Secularism *is* pretty powerful.Worldwide, secularism allows for treaties to take place.

Secularism *is* pretty powerful.
Worldwide, secularism allows for treaties to take place. In fact, secularism predates the term secularism, as even in cultures which had strong representation from religious leaders, such as Byzantium, the political leaders STILL behaved like political leader do now:

But Zack Lilly – theology is built into secularism. English Common Law _is_ the christian equivalent to Sharia law.-

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There is no “true secularism”. It’s a useful value for governments to hold in a pluralistic society, even if other values are within the government along with secularism.

Governments typically function in a secular manner unless they have a singular people. Most societies are pluralistic to some degree. That automatically makes their governments HAVE to have some aspect of secularism built into it.

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oh don’t get me started on Pinker. He bought into the Evo stuff. He missed the boat by rejecting connectionism.

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Pinker *is* amazing, although I haven’t read him since reading The Language Instinct back in the 90s.

But the areas i disagreed with him then haven’t changed. At least with regards to language, he buys into the Chomskiesque modularization and evo-hard wiring stuff.

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There’s alternatives to Meritocracy for an egalitarian civilization though.

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America’s never been a meritocracy anyway.
How many academic geniuses sit at home on the Internet, twiddling their time ’til they die instead of working in a field where they could cure cancer or lead people?

“You’re capable, so you deserve it” was never an American value.

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The only evidence I can find in the USA that was a Meritocracy was in the creation of the Civil Service.

But as a society I don’t think the USA has ever been a Meritocracy.

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My mother got hired in a Civil Service position just before things changed in the late 1970s in a NJ Prosecutor’s office. [same as District Attorney in other places].

Everything was testing. She was a good test taker, so she rose fast.

Somewhere in the 80s, they made a failed attempt at a quota system; the first application of Affirmative Action was a dismal failure as it was quota-based.

There’s been great improvements since then, but AA has remained difficult to implement properly, although it’s resulted in opportunities otherwise impossible for many people.

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The shame of it is, conceptually, it’s a good idea. In some places, equal opportunity *is* implemented properly.

But in many human resources depts around the USA, it’s botched daily.

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The US education system is a meritocracy failure. It’s the primary place where the USA is a meritocracy at present… or it was supposed to be. But it never became so.

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Meritocracy AS INTENDED _should_ lead to egalitarianism. But it doesn’t. What it does instead, is serve as a weak justification for those “with more”.

“They must have earned it”.

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The Bell Curve annoys me in many ways. I can’t believe they haven’t improved upon it but they haven’t.

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a) Refers to someone as [name]
b) Repeats referral to someone as [name]
c) Is satisfied that person is [name].
d) Builds argument upon [name]
e) Repeat:

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Nobody on the Internet except those that come from the chans use > = implies. For the rest of the ‘net, > means “quoting”. Makes a channer easy to spot in the wild tongue emoticon

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he group was created to house the alt.right away from the main Philosophy group. It’s not really for serious debate although sometimes it happens, just uncommonly.

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Theoretically, identical education opportunities would lead a rational people to eventually create a society whereby performance leads to promotion.

I haven’t seen where that’s worked though.

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The Meritocracy has been a 150 year social experiment in the USA.

Maybe it’s worked and I just haven’t seen it. I suspect it’s a meritocracy for some but despite all the testing they’ve done, it still seems to be a failure for most.

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I’ve tested on those political tests as “Social Anarchist”. I suppose it’s close enough:

It’s somewhat similar in that I don’t mind a government being there, doing it’s thing to keep full anarchy in everything from taking over and preventing excessive abuses of localized power… but otherwise allowing people individual and group freedoms generally speaking.

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I dunno. When I think of full anarchy, I think of the old Chinese gangs that people would have to pay for protection because the police were corrupt. Kinda like what growing up in NJ was like, just a lot worse tongue emoticon

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I tend towards an anarchistic view.

That being said: There’s several levels of freedom:

You have the “freedom to”.
But you also have the “freedom from”.

Those freedoms aren’t without a cost of some kind. The question is: What costs do you consider reasonable and what do you consider unreasonable?

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That’s a democracy. I have no idea what a democracy would truly be like. The closest thing I can find to one is how the UN operates.. and that’s not without its issues as well.

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ik but they’re trying to provide a hard balance between non-interference while also providing generally secular guidelines to allow for SOME peaceful co-existence of diverse nations.

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To get the “freedom to” do things, you need the simultaneous “freedom from” oppressive forces that constrain your “freedom to”.

Somebody’s gotta provide the “freedom from” part so you can do your “freedom to” because we’re not all on equal footing, especially when people start forming groups.

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It’s the only group on the planet where _some_ kind of representation exists between warring parties so that they can have some level of discussion.

I don’t think there’s a country on the planet that meets the UN guidelines on everything or even most things. But at least the guidelines are there as _some_ kind of measuring stick.

The USA sucks on some areas. Israel sucks on some things. Saudi Arabia sucks on some things. etc. They’re called out on it there. The UN reps have to see it and hear about it and talk about it, and bring this back to their governments and peoples to try to do something about it.

Does this work well? I dunno. But it’s something.

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The problem I see with the UN is that the diplomatic mask *is* the reality of it.

The UN operates “above everybody”. They’re superior. So is the UN rep for, say, Somolia REALLY representing the interests of Somolia, or the UN rep for Iraq REALLY representing Iraq’s needs, or are they enjoying their diplomatic status and travel funded by their people?

Plus, the countries are free to ignore, or sign, or agree to various declaration as they see fit.

There’s some ganging up that happens of course. Over the past few years, some of the Middle Eastern reps have tried to put together a justification for Sharia law but the rest of the UN isn’t buying it yet because the gaps *do* leave room for problems, even though Sharia and English Common law are *generally* comparable to each other… with some glaring exceptions.

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Large groups = power. That’s the incentive.

ndividualism would need to be protected somehow though. You say there’s no incentive: Here’s an example of incentive:

Your neighbor likes a different band than you and your friends. Incentive is to gang up and force your neighbor to listen to your favorite band until they like it.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_anarchist_communities I think we’re all in agreement to _some_ level of anarchy here.

More or less pure anarchy communities don’t have a terribly good track record: 2016 isn’t the first time anybody thought of trying something novel out.

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Then for full anarchy to exist, the whole world would have to follow the same ideology. One world government called anarchy.

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It’s a nice Utopia. I have yet to see any Utopian vision work out the way it was planned though.

I see no reason a Utopian vision would suddenly work.

Right now, I’m writing a check to my brother. I run a family business. The closest thing *I* can functionally come to an anarchist yet cooperative system is to issue him 1099s, having him as an Independent Contractor, which means I can’t tell him HOW to do his job, just THAT he does his job.

It’s minimal. His relationship to the fed govt is his own, as mine is to me. It’s a slim business model. The company makes no real profit to speak of and most of it goes to advertising and other expenses.

It’s the best I can do for a “lean govt” in my own little corner of the world.

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They grow if they have a growth mindset. If they have a stability mindset, they can stay small.

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Sure. If it’s bordered by other countries with stable borders. Countries have maintained borders for many centuries maintaining status quo.

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Oddly enough, you can thank the Ottoman occupation for… I dunno, about 500 years of Greek stability.

One thing the old empires believed in was Status Quo. It was a big deal for stability: Keep things as they are.

Byzantine Empire lasted 900 years that way.. more or less…. so did the Ottoman empire for about 500 years after that.

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It led to stability for many centuries in past civilizations. But I agree: status quo is not a post medieval Western European value.

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I don’t think it’s fear. It’s logical. No evidence that we could ever have a government-free society beyond a small number of people anyway.

I like the _idea_ of anarchy : I just can’t see it happening.

I also don’t see the necessity for a hierarchical government either. I think there are other models that are possible.

For example, small cells with diplomacy. That’s a minimal hierarchy. Stuff like that. [more of a network model].

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The USA is kind of a network model.

Imagine this:

A society that’s cell-based. The state’s main task is to protect the organism from outside intruders but to have a minimal impact on internal activities except for one:

The cells would each have a maximum number of occupants. Say, 150?

Of course then you have subunits like… families… to contend with.

So it’s probably impractical.

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Always nice to try new things. Which planet shall we inhabit in order to conduct these experiments? This one seems to be wrapped up in other things.

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It could, but then it would be a religion.

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I’m actually a fan of the majority of the US Constitution as it is.

I like the checks and balances. I especially like the States rights vs Federal rights. I think it does an ok job. But there’s a lot of mess that grew up from there that could use some fixing

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I never felt represented by any of my representatives. The government is mostly invisible to me. I vote because I was a Boy Scout and believe in doing it. I pay taxes because, shit, it’s taxes. I don’t bump heads with the existing laws, so I don’t even know they’re there most of the time.

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