Commentary - Social Solutions
There are no such things as social problems and the suggestion that there are is only possible because the nature of society is misunderstood. Society is a collection or group of individuals identified by some common characteristic, usually geographic, (for example, the citizens of a country) or cultural (for example, the members of a religion).
What would a social problem be? If no individual in society had a problem, there would be no social problems. If only one individual in a society had a problem, that would not constitute a social problem. If only two individuals in a society had a problem, there would still be no social problem. At what point are individual problems suddenly transformed social problems?
A specific example is employment. If only one person in a society was unemployed, there would be no employment problem. Even if there were two, three, or a dozen, in any large society, there would not be a societal employment problem. Just how many people have to be out of work before it is a social problem?
If you are unemployed, there is an unemployment problem. It is not a social problem, it is your individual problem. If a thousand people are unemployed, a thousand people have an unemployment problem. If you are one of them, your problem is no worse because there are nine hundred and ninety nine others unemployed, than if you were the only one. The problem is still your individual problem, and this is true for the other nine hundred and ninety nine, as well. If you are employed, for you there is no unemployment problem, even if everyone else in your society is unemployed.
- The worst evils ever imposed on mankind are solutions to social problems.
Some tyranny is simply evil but most tyranny is carried out in the name of some social cause bolstered with terms like "justice," "morality," "peace," "fairness," "rights," "compassion," and, "protection." The object of these causes are never
the healthy, self-supporting, self-sufficient, morally decent producing adult members of society. The object of these causes is always some group of individuals deserving of special attention because of some failing, fault, or frailty with which they have been blessed, thus qualifying them for special programs, laws, and benefits.
These special people are called variously, the disadvantaged, handicapped, poor, sick, the endangered, disenfranchised. Notice that those who are not qualified for special advantages are disqualified because of what they do, that is, produce; while, those who are qualified for special advantages are deserving, not because of what they do, but because of something that happens to them, how they were born, how they were reared (brought up), an accident, a disease, or simply the fact that the world is hard place to live in and they are forced to live in it.
The very interesting thing about this is those who are not qualified for any special consideration at all could get along very well in a world without any of those who qualify for the special programs and benefits "society" is required to provide them. Those who are qualified for these benefits, however, could not survive in a world without those who get no special consideration. This is almost never discussed or even thought, however, for two reasons: those who benefit from this scheme have no reason to want attention brought to this fact and those at whose expense the benefits are provided are generally both generous and benevolent by nature (the result of knowing one is adequate to live successfully in the world), dislike unnecessary conflict and animosity, and don't mind that their inferiors are benefiting at their expense.
What always happens, however, is the parasites that run this scheme cannot help seeking more and more power and wealth, and continually expand the scheme, until the amount that is being confiscated from the producers for the sake of the non-producers becomes oppressive. At this point, the benevolence of the producers is pushed too far and they begin to resist. This is obviously a threat to the ruling parasites who respond to the resistance with their only weapon, accusations of "selfishness," "hard-heartedness," even "cruelty," and as a last resort, force.
Eventually, this pushes the producers from resistance to rebellion, which the parasites will, if possible, put down with the utmost force. Thus these social solutions to social problems always lead from simple confiscatory policy to total oppression, including, imprisonment, enslavement, starvation, torture, and large scale executions.
Have you read the news lately?
- Though, in fact, there is no such thing as a social problem, if some problems faced by some individuals are nevertheless labeled social problems, there would still be no solution. All problems are caused by people. To solve the problems it would be necessary to change the people.
The honest student of history cannot help noticing that human civilization is a great irony. While providing great benefits, eliminating the diseases that plagued mankind for generations, providing the means of production, transportation, and sanitation that enable the least able members of any society to live in relative comfort and convenience only dreamed of by kings in ancient ages, the knowledge and developments that enable man to cure disease, eliminate famine, and conquer space also enable him to develop weapons that destroy cities and keep mankind in constant fear of sudden destruction. While innumerable device has been invented to make human life more comfortable and communication between men easier and simpler, the world is dominated by hate, crime, disease, conflict, famine, and war.
Despite the insane protestations of environmentalists and modern luddites, it is obvious no scientific discovery or technological development is the cause of human beings destroying one another and themselves with disease, drugs, and war. Knowledge of the means to prosperity, health, and the enjoyment of life pleads with mankind to embrace her and find all that life has to offer, but mankind spurns knowledge in preference for settling petty peeves, submitting to irrational desires, and following their superstitions to their own destruction and death.
Why!? Why would any person reject knowledge that would enable them to live successfully and joyfully in the world? There is a reason.
Though all that is worth having in this world is available through knowledge, knowledge is a ruthless ruler of those who choose to serve her. Knowledge demands absolute obedience. Anything less and she will not only not fulfill her promise but will replace it with a curse. Knowledge demands constant careful attention to every detail of every instruction. It is hard to follow knowledge because she does not give any reminders of her demands, for one of her demands is that those who follow her discipline themselves. She does not instruct, but will correct any who fail to follow her faithfully, even to their destruction and death.
Oh, this is hard. But those who have discovered the truth, which is what knowledge is, know that is what life, what enjoyment itself is. Here is a great secret, life is hard! Those who love life, love that "hardness," because it is proof that life is worth living. The hardness of life is not a penalty, not a curse, it is the very heart of the meaning of life. Life is that which is worth exerting every possible effort, expending every ounce of energy one has and exhausting one's self in pursuit of. That exertion, in fact is life, and the joy of it.
But, what if someone is not willing to obey the truth, to exhaust themselves in the pursuit of life? They will die, or go on welfare, which for a truly human being, is the same thing as death.
The human race, and thus every society, is comprised primarily of lazy, dishonest, ignorant, and superstitious people. No program, no government, no movement, nothing is going to change the human race, or even one individual in it. So long as most human beings are lazy, dishonest, ignorant and superstitious, a truly civilized society is an impossibility.
This does not mean that every member of a society is lazy, dishonest, ignorant, or superstitious. It means that some of these characteristics are true of most of the members of any society. While, some members may be fairly ambitious, they will be dishonest or ignorant to some degree. Others will be very honest, but lazy or ignorant, or both. Almost all members of all societies are superstitious to some degree.
Only a society consisting primarily of intelligent, healthy, honest, decent, productive, reasonable individuals can be civilized. Every other society is or degenerates into a society dominated by crime and savagery.
In those rare societies that have little coercive government, and little accumulated wealth, survival is dependent on each individual's own ambitions, integrity, knowledge and effort. Such societies are like star bursts in history, lighting up the darkness of human existence with dazzling displays of progress and individual prosperity, which quickly fade as the advanced society makes it easier for the lazy, dishonest, ignorant, and superstitious to survive, breed, and vote.
The fact that most societies are comprised primarily of the ignorant, the incompetent, and the immoral and the history of those societies and their relationships to each other has convinced many that mankind is essentially depraved. The teaching of some religions, especially Christianity, has intentionally reinforced this false idea.
Man is not depraved, man is a volitional being, which means everything he does he must do by conscious choice. The ability to choose makes knowledge both possible and necessary. To choose correctly, one must know what the consequences of possible choices are. The ability to choose makes reason both possible and necessary. To choose correctly one must be able to use knowledge to make correct judgments.
The ability to choose is not a guarantee one will choose correctly. The ability to have knowledge does not mean one will never be ignorant. The ability to think does not insure one will think correctly.
Since everything a human being does must be done by choice, to learn and think one must choose to learn and think. For knowledge to be useful it must be correct, that is, it must be the truth.
This is the very thing most human beings have chosen to avoid. Most human beings loath the truth. The reasons are many, but the main reason people prefer almost anything to the truth is because reality is demanding and truth is ruthless, and it is easy to swallow any falsehood that seems to promise and escape from reality and its demands.
But reality cannot be escaped, and every attempt to do so can only result in a life crippled or destroyed. This is the reason most people seem disconnected from reality, this is the cause of that behavior and those beliefs the religious attribute to human depravity. It is depravity, but it is depravity chosen by men, not thrust upon them.