Thursday, February 10, 2011

Political Correctness Distilled

For some reason I find the subject of Political Correctness fascinating. I guess I'm not the only one. Bruce Charlton, a professor at University of Buckingham, UK, authors a teaching blog called Bruce Charlton's Miscellany that delves deeply into the subject. Lately he published an interesting digest of what Political Correctness (or Post Christian, if you will) really is. I want convey the way I see it - my comments in red.

For PC the ultimate evil is selfishness - therefore the highest good it can conceive is unselfishness: i.e. altruism.

This worldly altruism is operationalized in terms of the allocation of 'goods' (money, power, status etc).

But PC sees humans as innately selfish - therefor the allocation of goods must be done impersonally - in practice, by rules and bureaucracies.

The organizational enforcement of Political Correctness is primarily through government and NGO bureaucracies because they are normally faceless non-individuals. However, the PC attitude is practiced in nearly all organizations to prevent any possibility of public shaming. In order to be spared the PC wrath most organizations and individuals simply play along. Any that stand against conventional PCism suffer a robotic and unrelenting attack. A good example of a specific organization under PC assault is the Boy Scouts of America. Or, of course, the Republican Party in general.


What governs the principles of PC? Reaction, rejection. The past is tainted. There must be a fresh start. The good is the opposite of what people used to believe. Hence moral inversion.

This is the core of PCism. To color traditions as backward and invalid is the PC way. In Western cultures Christianity in particular must be invalidated. We see the ultra toleration of Islam, an intolerant religion, and the routine intoleration of Christianity's mores, symbols and holidays by the media and by secular institutions. By extension traditional American values of individualism and the ownership of private property must be denigrated at every turn.

The fact that all this is anti-spontaneous, anti-natural, alien, scary - is actually taken as a sign of its virtuousness. The truly altruistic must sacrifice themselves.

The mass media is essential to this since it fills our minds everyday, continually displacing the past - so whatever is in the mass media is reality.

The mass media and the education cabal has attempted to rewrite much of Western history. For the incurious and self absorbed what they see on TV is truth, history is unimportant and passe. Even when history is presented factually the modern sheen of PCism is applied to the motives and actions of historical figures in order to discredit them as self serving misogynists.

Atheism leads to this-worldliness, and to relativism, and to the working rule that the inversion of the traditional is virtuous.

Reinforcement for this tendency comes from population growth, meritocracy, division of labour, prosperity and the mass media.

Unlimited mass immigration then favouring immigrants over natives, damaging economic productivity by taking from the productive and giving to the unproductive (in order to generate dependency), enforcing laws with zero-tolerance against the well-behaved while being soft on bad people, foreign policy which attacks allies and builds up enemies, attacking normal sexuality and the family and allocating status to everything else - all the usual stuff.

The fact that we see this everyday has made us numb to its insidiousness. A traditional family of a mother, a father and few children is often treated as odd in popular culture, where the father is either enslaving his wife and damaging his children or he is completely and utterly inept (except the Huxtables, of course). Whereas racially blended or homosexual families are enlightened and rightous, beyond reproach.

It has gotten to the point where the truth is skirted, often on critical issues, because it is impolitic to actually verbalize plain facts. A study that concludes based on the facts that black men commit more crime will not get cited except in the most obscure journals. A incident that involves Islamic terrorism is couched in conciliatory or apologetic language regardless of how egregious the act. Celebrities, CEO's and politicians are shunned and even forced to resign if they stray by speaking of obvious truths. Clumsiness is not a sin.

PCism has become entrenched and immovable. It is the very reasonableness of human nature to not want to offend unnecessarily that gives political correctness surface validation. The problem comes when reasonableness crosses the line into unreasonableness. When the power of government policy or law enforcement (like hate crimes) is applied based on political correctness and not objective facts we are all a little less free. Piece by piece, issue by issue PCism destroys freedom. In the end PCism is enslaving, and inhuman. Until we systematically and forcefully reject it we will continue to lose individual freedom.