> |Spudboy100@aol.com wrote:
> |> Oh boy, a futuristic, nazi mailing list.
> In the olden days, there existed a bunch of
> humans called the ``futurists''. They later
> became fascists (in Italy) and communists (in Russia).
> Change is certain, progress is not.
Quite right. Worse still, the potential for fascism often has
very little to do with the doctrinal content of the
church/movement/organization that becomes fascist. "We're
libertarians! Libertarians CAN'T be fascists by definition!"
(That would be precisely the moment to get worried, and, above
all, to whip out your can o' philosophical whoop-ass.) It's more
a question of how the prominent figures in a movement conduct
But it's quite difficult to know how to predict fascism. A lot
of studies were done after WWII, though, which shed some light
on the matter. There are certainly some disturbing signs among
members of Extropians (but, of course, it's not clear how less
present such signs would be on any other list): a VERY strong
"us vs. them" mentality, strong resentment towards groups
thought to have more power than they deserve (environmentalists,
Jews, feminists, etc., etc., etc. -- the circumcision
discussions are always good for a laugh: no, no, seriously,
these ZOG minions -- or would that be "minion"?... -- can
certainly be annoying; but the point about the danger manifest
in the reaction is _attitude_, not _content_).
The danger is particularly great among a group that generally
doesn't believe in the irrational (in the Freudian, not
cognitive or neuro-psychological sense), in part because such a
group generally won't agree with, or understand the force of,
the point above about the irrelevance of doctrinal content.
Speaking of Italy and Russia, I'm thinking of the end of Buber's
anti-Marxist book, _Paths in Utopia_: I think the risk, if not
underbelly, of Extropianism is "Rome"; elements of the WTA:
perhaps "Moscow"; the alternative? Well, probably not Jerusalem,
as Buber predicted... -- let's say Stockholm.
On the other hand, any attmpt to articulate an alternative, to
take a stand against elements of contemporary society, creates a
risk: "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss."
And saying more with less (also known as "negative dialectics")
may not minimize the risk much, except insofar as it lapses into
quietism (i.e. to be Hamlet or not-Hamlet).
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Jul 27 2000 - 14:12:20 MDT