Re: Life Duty Death

Marty G. Price (mprice@Ra.MsState.Edu)
Sun, 24 Sep 1995 09:15:07 -0500

On 24 Sep 1995, Javilk wrote:

> FREEDOM is what ENABLED us to live better lives! Just look at what
> went on when Serious Laws were passed to prevent any kind of environmental
> degradation in the planned economies of the former soviet union -- they
> were ignored to meet government mandated quota's! Result -- one of the
> worst ecological messes in the world!
> When people are left free to do what they wish, they WILL improve not
> just their lives, but the world they live in. But when something, be it
> a large governmental agency, or a set of large corporations, runs shotgun
> over any kind of process, the environment suffers. Oppressed peoples
> care more about their own lives than those of others. Look up Masilow's
> Hierarchy of Human Desires.

[Excerpted a central point from a long discussion.]

It's "Theories of History" time folks, so put on your B.S. filters and
your hip waders. Yes, I am fully responsible for whatever nonsense follows.

Marx was right in his notions of societal evolution, but wrong as to what
nineteenth century "civilized" societies were evolving toward. In the
later years of the twentieth century, we find ourselves in the Age of

Hitler *may have* been trying to impose his vision of the monolithic
bureaucratic state on Germany. If so, he blessedly failed. China
(especially the China of the immediate post-Red Guard years, but
contemporary China too) seems to have unpleasantly succeeded.

Other models of the bureaucratic state have been messier. In the West,
where bureaucratic government and bureaucratic corporations have
differing goals, there have been no total "successes," which means our
economies still function and we still have liberty.

In the former Soviet Union, where the government bureaucracy and the
corporate bureaucracy were the same, the country drowned itself in its
own inefficiency.

Third World nations, whose bureaucracies almost parody the "Great
Nations" and "Great Corporations," tend to function nearly as badly as
the former Soviet Union.

And what is the cause of this great stagnation? (Danger: Grand
Generalization Follows!!!)

In a vast bureaucracy, no one is "responsible" for anything, therefore
nothing ever is done right. Javilk, with his lassaiz-faire (sp) agenda and
I with my pre-Marxist utopian vision, are working from the same roots: [or
appear to be. Please forgive me if I'm misconstruing your arguments] the
notions of freedom, responsibility, and liberty that date from the
European Enlightenment.

Javilk sees much regulation as just more weight in the bureaucracy; I see
questions of forcing responsibility on bureaucrats (be they corporate or
government) who are insulated from the consequences of their worst action
and all too likely to be held liable for the costs of their best.

Are our disagreements relevant to the human future? I hope so. And is
there a future for humanity outside the regimentation of China or the
disorder of the Third World & former Soviet Union? I sincerely hope so,
but am not optimistic. It seems our current corporate and political
worlds reward the greedy and the short-sighted rather than the many who
would plan, build, and behave reasonably. Civilizations have collapsed
before; ecological and economic issues have likely been involved. We are
not immune.

Blessed Be,

Red Deer

[Bumpersticker of choice: You are Responsible for the Safe Operation of
this Planet]