What is this Opposition to Modernity
What was the loyal opposition?
The Loyal Opposition to Modernity was Göran Therborn’s phrase for Marxism, and while Loyal Opposition to Modernity here takes a much broader meaning, it is in that notion: pointing out the central problems,contradictions, paradoxes, and failures in contemporary society and politics from a skeptical and marginally left-wing perspective. The spirit of modernity, in the author’s view, is embodied in the various reactions to The European Enlightenment and then its expansion in the 19th and 20th century globalization and the modes of capitalist production that then emerge worldwide. This not naive anti-modernism or anti-capitalism, but an attempt to look at it from a critical perspective. It is also not the ideas of any particular group or organization, nor does this any writer at this blog speak for any organization in their pieces unless it is explicitly stated otherwise. If this has any political importance, which one would be foolish to see a blog as having alone, it is to ask pre-political questions.
The motto of this blog is “Skeptically, Analytically,
Dialectically Dialogically, and Honestly”
Skeptically is embodied in the spirit of critical doubt: not of the Sextus Empiricus or even Humean bent, but that science and various modes of logic are useful tools for dealing with innate and inherent human irrationality. The author believes this embodies a variety of modes including rhetorical, analytic, classical dialectic, and psychological heuristics. While the author believes that science is the best combination of empirical and rational methodologies in dealing with questions of physical world and rejects general supernaturalism, he also believes that there are real demarcation line(s) to scientific enterprise and naive naturalism are to be rejected.
Analytically is embodied in the idea that claims should be dealt with in various forms of linear and syllogistic logic. This means claims should be subject to first-order, second-order, and modal logic as well as critical psychology and linguistic framing. Contradictions should be exposed whenever possible. Despite the “spirit of the Enlightenment,” the author believes that we have never been modern at the biological level in regards to logic. It is not rational to expect people to be rational, and even the author realizes that he is subject to same irrationality that everyone is subject to and that this should be rooted out.
Dialogicly-the author used to have dialectically here, but realizes that while Hegelian dialectics may be useful in the sense of the classical forms of argument, it has ontological and teleological commitments that the author no longer can be certain of their use or truth value. Dialogical, however, means allowing sides to speak to each other and let’s truths stand or fall based on the honesty, precision, and logic aided through rhetoric and semiotics. In classical sense, this would have been called the dialectical argument, but is easily confused with ontological claims necessary in Hegelian dialectics that seem to fall apart when applying other formalized forms of logic to the question.
Honestly is embodied in admitting when one wrong, and trying not to favor the opinions that are close to the author’s own. The author will try to admit mistakes when he makes them, which he often does, and will be honest when his position and opinion changes over time and in regards to evidence.
While the Loyal Opposition to Modernity does then to favor a left (although not liberal in the American or European sense, but in a class conscious) perspective and tends to come out of a philosophical bent (including Historical materialism, Humean empiricism, object realism, realist logic, etc), topics covered can included politics, sexuality, religion, philosophy, current event, culture (popular, high, low, middle, folk, etc), aesthetics, and whatever touches the author’s mind at the time.
But we are no longer a “Loyal” opposition: we are now a disloyal opposition.
What is the Disloyal Opposition?
The Disloyal opposition takes the principles of the Loyal opposition but has expanded its sense of urgency while being more skeptical of the alternatives that are readily at hand. Still coming from a largely Marxian framework, but more diverse in the geo-political perspectives with a clearer sense that capitalist-liberal modernity may be holding on far past its prime politically, culturally, and economically, and may not contain the liberating elements it once had. Our motto has been expanded: “Urgently, Angrily, Skeptically, Critically, Dialectically, and Honestly”