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Does society always move inexorably left in terms of social values over time? watch

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    It seems like this is the case, for the most part. I've really never seen a society move back towards right-wing values in a strong way after moving towards left wing values, even if popular opinion occasionally swings right for brief periods.

    It seems like people with left-wing values are always perceived to be future-oriented and have a moral high ground, while right-wing values are nearly always viewed as provincial and practical, yet selfish. And as a result, no one really wants to subscribe to such values because they're associated with backwardness.

    Is there anything that can be done to make right-wing social values seem less selfish/provincial, or are democratic societies stuck with a system that only ever seems to move in one direction on the social axis?

    I'm starting to think that there's something about human nature that will just push crowds of people towards compassion, adoption of foreign values, and/or generosity even when it becomes self-destructive.

    I don't know if I'd assert that such values are always correct, but it seems that they are always perceived as correct by the majority of people, which means that progress in that direction is only ever delayed to wait out a tide of unpopularity, and never halted or reversed under any circumstances. The way things were in the past is always viewed as a state of injustice or brutality, while movement towards the present is always viewed as progress towards some kind of fundamental goodness.

    Could this be a weakness of democracy, and perhaps a reason why democratic societies don't last in the end?
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    India brought back the British laws condemning anything "against the order of nature" a couple of years ago, so it can happen. The spread of Islam might also influence some movement to the right.

    I think it's because of what the 'left-wing' represents in European culture... The right-wing is basically the Christianity-influenced conservative culture that used to dominate Europe. The left-wing is the reform of that particular culture. Any reform is considered left-wing and so any "progress" in a society would have to be left-wing movement.
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    (Original post by yulebook)
    I think it's because of what the 'left-wing' represents in European culture... The right-wing is basically the Christianity-influenced conservative culture that used to dominate Europe. The left-wing is the reform of that particular culture. Any reform is considered left-wing and so any "progress" in a society would have to be left-wing movement.
    Well, what if someone wanted to actively push the idea that, say, moving towards a Christian-influenced conservative culture is progress rather than regression? How would they start a strong enough movement to go beyond just halting the erosion of what remains, to actually pushing toward society back towards those values as an ideal in general? How would they create the idea they, in fact, represent the future and progress?

    It seems like whatever values are represented as progress or reform are always the values that win in the end. And the values associated with tradition are always ultimately dismissed as dwelling in the past while not having a clear plan for the future. So the only way to actually move towards something as an ideal is to transform it into a left-wing movement, and somehow modify the perception of what is defined as progress and what is defined as traditional.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    Well, what if someone wanted to actively push the idea that, say, moving towards a Christian-influenced conservative culture is progress rather than regression? How would they start a strong enough movement to go beyond just halting the erosion of what remains, to actually pushing toward society back towards those values as an ideal in general? How would they create the idea they, in fact, represent the future and progress?

    It seems like whatever values are represented as progress or reform are always the values that win in the end. And the values associated with tradition are always ultimately dismissed as dwelling in the past while not having a clear plan for the future. So the only way to actually move towards something as an ideal is to transform it into a left-wing movement, and somehow modify the perception of what is defined as progress and what is defined as traditional.
    It's impossible to move towards a Christian-influenced conservative culture without going backwards to old Europe. The right-wing already has the concept of "progressing to the past" covered. It will never be progress in the common sense of the word, it will be "rectifying a failure of liberalism".

    Religion has been a good way of influencing the masses. As has propaganda.
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    (Original post by yulebook)
    It's impossible to move towards a Christian-influenced conservative culture without going backwards to old Europe. The right-wing already has the concept of "progressing to the past" covered. It will never be progress in the common sense of the word, it will be "rectifying a failure of liberalism".

    Religion has been a good way of influencing the masses. As has propaganda.
    That makes sense. But it seems like the fact that the right-wing is viewed as backwards makes right-wing movements a failure in the long run. Because forwards is generally viewed as the more correct direction due to technology being lumped in with progress, and nearly everyone agrees that more technology is good.

    So what I'm thinking, though... is that the only thing that could really help the right-wing in Europe would be a Christian revival. That is, if missionaries started going around within Europe trying to recruit disenfranchised young people into their congregations in order to sell their ideas.

    Ideally, they would need to marry Christianity with technology rather than just history in order to convince people. For instance, a movement like this:

    http://motherboard.vice.com/read/why...-transhumanist

    It might be hard to rid people of the mental image of Christianity as a religion associated with people who believe in a flat earth or reject evolution, but if it could be done... it would be interesting to see the results of combining the two strongest ideological forces in Western culture, technological progress and Christianity, into a single movement.

    It seems that both have something the other needs. Transhumanists are obsessed with progress, but have no popular appeal or compelling moral justifications for their position. Christians have popular appeal and know how to create compelling moral justifications by reading the Bible in a certain way, but they aren't adapting to an increasingly technological world quite as well as more secular movements.

    I's possible that they could be compelled to work together if a common banner or rallying cry could be invented. Then we would have a proselytising faith with popular appeal that provides a moral justification for the promotion of both continued technological progress and Western values. Imagine a society that pursues technological progress with religious zeal and moral certitude, rather than one that's pulled back and forth between amoral progressive scientists and passionately ethical atavists.

    I mean, I'll grant that it's very, very unlikely to happen... but it would be really interesting if it did.
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    Left wingers praise peace and love but right wingers praise patriotism and war. Right wing ideology IS more selfish than Left.

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    History is full of instances of the revival of what we would now consider conservative values, as well as the spreading of intolerance.

    The Roman emperor Augustus instituted a programme of moral cleansing in Rome when he came to power, with the aim of restoring traditional family values. He had the poet Ovid exiled to a small village in Romania for 'corrupting the morals'. Muslims have been getting increasingly more conservative over the past 50 years. Countries like Syria and Turkey were no more Right Wing than the USA during the 1950s and '60s. Muslim young people in the UK are often more conservative than their parents. Nazi Germany is a great example of people democratically voting in a politician who wanted to restore what they saw as traditional German values, by stemming the tide of 'degenerate' Jewish-driven modernity in culture and the arts, as well as in socioeconomic terms.

    The Florentine religious leader Savonarola led a crusade against the secular and classicising themes of the Renaissance which he saw as unchristian. He inspired a puritanical campaign by violent youths which expelled the Medici family from Florence and created an independent Florentine Republic (which ironically went on to produce Machiavelli, perhaps the most classicising and secular of all Renaissance figures). A similar thing happened in England under Cromwell. I could go on...
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    Not in my view. Left and right are misnomers: the true difference is reforming and conservative, and reform is by definition progressive.

    For example, when the nation-state first came to prominence it was a pretty communistic concept compared to the feudalism that had gone before. A single system of law, language imposed on a state that basically had no demos other than happening to have a single king. Usually by weakening the feudal lords the king empowered the people. Since then, the nation-state became almost the epitome of the establishment and now it is usually seen as right-wing or reactionary to be nationalist.

    And how about individualism? Even until very recently the right-wing establishment view was that we were all subject to the prevailing religion or state establishment. The individualistic philosophies of the French Revolution and the free trade philosophies of the Whig parties are now the distillation of conservative thought. I understand why this appears on the surface like society is moving left, but since it has increasingly been left-wingers calling for national unity, controlled markets and social programmes that obviate individualism, it begins to look more like a pendulum, although in their time it always looks like the country is moving left.

    There does appear on a scale of millennia to be a trend towards more densely populated societies which require ever increasing levels of bureaucracy, technology and notional capital to function. Even excluding the recent spike sustained by fossil fuel extraction, and despite reverses associated with the rise and fall of empires, human society had still been getting steadily "bigger" in the above senses since the end of the Ice Age. I can't tell where we will end up.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    It seems like this is the case, for the most part. I've really never seen a society move back towards right-wing values in a strong way after moving towards left wing values, even if popular opinion occasionally swings right for brief periods.

    It seems like people with left-wing values are always perceived to be future-oriented and have a moral high ground, while right-wing values are nearly always viewed as provincial and practical, yet selfish. And as a result, no one really wants to subscribe to such values because they're associated with backwardness.

    Is there anything that can be done to make right-wing social values seem less selfish/provincial, or are democratic societies stuck with a system that only ever seems to move in one direction on the social axis?

    I'm starting to think that there's something about human nature that will just push crowds of people towards compassion, adoption of foreign values, and/or generosity even when it becomes self-destructive.

    I don't know if I'd assert that such values are always correct, but it seems that they are always perceived as correct by the majority of people, which means that progress in that direction is only ever delayed to wait out a tide of unpopularity, and never halted or reversed under any circumstances. The way things were in the past is always viewed as a state of injustice or brutality, while movement towards the present is always viewed as progress towards some kind of fundamental goodness.

    Could this be a weakness of democracy, and perhaps a reason why democratic societies don't last in the end?
    I don't see where this information has come from, we aren't moving left and most of what is now the atypical left is actually what used to be the right - limitation of freedom of speech for example. The left is an overused term, the USA is as right wing as ever, it's barely gone more to the left since president Lyndon Johnson's great society reforms. The UK has barely gotten more left wing, in fact realistically the UK's economic policy has barely gotten better since the liberal reforms. Really, we've had some improvements to democracy but democracy isn't inherently left or right, it can exist on both ends of the spectrum, similarly to anarchy and fascism. So economically, the USSR never was communist, Maoism was never full communism and was reformed in the 1970s, and that leaves us with what? Uruguay, Vietnam, Cuba and Norway being our most left wing countries? How in any way are we moving to the left? Social policy is of course why you think this, people harp on about leftist marxists etc, but lets be honest Karl Marx didn't care very much about feminism or social justice, hell he even became anti-Semitic in his later years. We have social equality, a decline in public liberty and no economic progress outside of charities, and in terms of Trotskyism we have a handful of good charities like doctors without borders and the world health foundation, and then NATO and the UN which in recent years have been allowing murder in Libya and Iraq and Afghanistan, whilst ignoring places like Nigeria and Somalia, Sierra Leone and Ethiopia.

    What I'm trying to say is we haven't actually made any economic progress towards the left outside of things like equality of the sexes. The garbage that the right declare to be the left these days is usually just fascist nonsense, and exists independent of the left right spectrum. Historically, we were closer to a left wing revolution in the late 1700s and 1800s then we are now. Don't pin radical stupidity on the left, because anyone who studied Marx, Engels, Trotsky, Lenin and Mao will tell you this much : This muttering idiot in Canada combined with Bernie and Corbyn would still result is a barely centre-left government. I like Bernie and Corbyn, but lets face it the real left is dead and has been replaced by someone who thinks its acceptable to say segregating train carriages is left wing. Karl Marx would literally commit sepuku sooner than stand beside these goons.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    It seems like this is the case, for the most part. I've really never seen a society move back towards right-wing values in a strong way after moving towards left wing values, even if popular opinion occasionally swings right for brief periods.
    Russia? Just a few decades ago they were the foremost socialist state on Earth, but since the collapse of the Union, they have been moving further and further towards the traditional right, socially and to a lesser extent economically.

    And I do believe much of Northern, Western and Central Europe are going to see a massive swing towards nationalism and reactionary, right-wing values over the next few years. It has been building for some time now and this migrant crisis may well be the straw that breaks the camel's back.
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    Its just outward appearance. Of course people would wish to appear to support the left wing as it has been heavily popularised and it can considered acceptance. This left and right perspective is wrong in approach and should be more 3 dimensional. Its not just left and right its also about upholding things beyond them like dignity, safety, opinion, free will all of which have been advertised to be supported by both sides in a way or another. The current political systems are critically flawed and will need to be resolved.
    I however blame dividing opinion and uncapablility of comprehension to be a more crucial problem. In a perfect world both left ring and right wing would work best. In out materialistc world it focuses on increasing possesion whether that be money, objects, knowledge, physical ability or production the basic ethics of human life need to be sorted not just for the benefit of removing differentiating opinion but bringing justice and human law above all. Religious or not complete dominance of one side will be able to succeed if only weren't humans.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    It seems like this is the case, for the most part. I've really never seen a society move back towards right-wing values in a strong way after moving towards left wing values, even if popular opinion occasionally swings right for brief periods.

    It seems like people with left-wing values are always perceived to be future-oriented and have a moral high ground, while right-wing values are nearly always viewed as provincial and practical, yet selfish. And as a result, no one really wants to subscribe to such values because they're associated with backwardness.

    Is there anything that can be done to make right-wing social values seem less selfish/provincial, or are democratic societies stuck with a system that only ever seems to move in one direction on the social axis?

    I'm starting to think that there's something about human nature that will just push crowds of people towards compassion, adoption of foreign values, and/or generosity even when it becomes self-destructive.

    I don't know if I'd assert that such values are always correct, but it seems that they are always perceived as correct by the majority of people, which means that progress in that direction is only ever delayed to wait out a tide of unpopularity, and never halted or reversed under any circumstances. The way things were in the past is always viewed as a state of injustice or brutality, while movement towards the present is always viewed as progress towards some kind of fundamental goodness.

    Could this be a weakness of democracy, and perhaps a reason why democratic societies don't last in the end?
    Depends how you define right and left wing. Milton Friedman (right wing economist that advised Margaret thatcher and Ronald Reagan) supported gay marriage which from the tone of your thread you imply is left wing.
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    (Original post by garfeeled)
    Depends how you define right and left wing. Milton Friedman (right wing economist that advised Margaret thatcher and Ronald Reagan) supported gay marriage which from the tone of your thread you imply is left wing.
    I'm mostly thinking of left-wing as stuff like white privilege, racial quotas, positive discrimination, cultural appropriation, and support for mass immigration, along with this sense that Western cultures and peoples should be punished or even destroyed to make amends to minority groups they've harmed in the past.

    I view right-wing as everyone opposed to all of that for various reasons, but unfortunately destined to fail because the left is always viewed as the correct direction of progress.

    I was left-wing a long time ago, mostly because I'm an Atheist and supported gay marriage (that was basically the only reason), but the left moved too far left for me, and now I'm right-wing by comparison, and I'm seeing how younger people are growing up seeing the current left's values as legitimate and the current right's values as broken or obsolete. I used to think they were compassionate, but now it seems they're authoritarian and punitive.
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    (Original post by jeremy1988)
    That makes sense. But it seems like the fact that the right-wing is viewed as backwards makes right-wing movements a failure in the long run. Because forwards is generally viewed as the more correct direction due to technology being lumped in with progress, and nearly everyone agrees that more technology is good.

    So what I'm thinking, though... is that the only thing that could really help the right-wing in Europe would be a Christian revival. That is, if missionaries started going around within Europe trying to recruit disenfranchised young people into their congregations in order to sell their ideas.

    Ideally, they would need to marry Christianity with technology rather than just history in order to convince people. For instance, a movement like this:

    http://motherboard.vice.com/read/why...-transhumanist

    It might be hard to rid people of the mental image of Christianity as a religion associated with people who believe in a flat earth or reject evolution, but if it could be done... it would be interesting to see the results of combining the two strongest ideological forces in Western culture, technological progress and Christianity, into a single movement.

    It seems that both have something the other needs. Transhumanists are obsessed with progress, but have no popular appeal or compelling moral justifications for their position. Christians have popular appeal and know how to create compelling moral justifications by reading the Bible in a certain way, but they aren't adapting to an increasingly technological world quite as well as more secular movements.

    I's possible that they could be compelled to work together if a common banner or rallying cry could be invented. Then we would have a proselytising faith with popular appeal that provides a moral justification for the promotion of both continued technological progress and Western values. Imagine a society that pursues technological progress with religious zeal and moral certitude, rather than one that's pulled back and forth between amoral progressive scientists and passionately ethical atavists.

    I mean, I'll grant that it's very, very unlikely to happen... but it would be really interesting if it did.
    The right-wing are formed of people who mostly reject new goals and objectives and want to "conserve".

    The left-wing are formed of people who introduce new goals and objectives and want to "reform".

    You forget that Christianity is the culture of Europe. It is inseparable from Europe. It is engraved in European history forever.

    Nearly all of European philosophy has been influenced by Christianity. It is to Europe, what Hinduism is to India, or Buddhism is to China. Even liberal policies look "Christian" when viewed from an outsider's perspective.

    I think for conservative Christian policies to be revived in Europe, there would need to be a large disenfranchisement from mainstream parties due to their liberal policies. If one assumes that the Conservatives gain on the failures of liberal parties, then the liberals would only need to fail dramatically at something for the conservatives to capitalise on it.
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    What are "left wing values" and "right wing values"? There are no such thing. The concept of left and right only works when you're talking about economics. Otherwise, there are really only authoritarian values and libertarian values. Everyone is somewhere in-between. Many leftists have been highly authoritarian, while many right wingers have been very socially liberal. Just look at Stalin (left wing) and John Mill (right wing).
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    (Original post by That Bearded Man)
    Left wingers praise peace and love but right wingers praise patriotism and war. Right wing ideology IS more selfish than Left.

    Posted from TSR Mobile
    it's lucky that this is only a generalisation because I'm very right wing but I love peace/love and hate war. I also find it unfortunate that "socially left wing" always has to mean libertarian when left wing values objectively are more coercive than right wing ones...well, much more, actually
 
 
 
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