Sunday, 20 July 2008

In Answer To The Querying Mind Of My Esteemed Friend Jonathan Mark Tillotson...


“Oddly enough I’m very optimistic about our culture.” Jonathan.

“I’m a child of this age, a decadent, but only I know this.” Nietzsche.

“It is the organism which has not specialized to its environment that has
the best chance for survival,” it has often been said. And the fact that
evolution not infrequently proceeds through the elimination of ‘specialized
types’ and the survival of the simpler and more adaptable forms of life, is
really a good summary of the irreconcilable antagonism upon which it is based.
Much would depend, of course, on the nature of the decline. Dumbed down into a
service culture with no real sense of its own purpose, the emancipated West has
never recovered from the scourge of political correctness which taught its youth
to be ashamed of their history. We have nothing to offer but apologies, which is
the meanest of all legacies to pass on to the emerging New World. In fact, we
are probably engaged in the most radical overhaul ever to alter any
retrospective reading of the past, preoccupied as we are with the very rejection
of the values upon which it is based. Indeed, the remarkable story of Western
imperial expansion, once endowed with grand and epochal meaning, is today so
universally maligned as an unprincipled if highly successful history of
money-grabbing, and its massive civilizing force invested with so many ambiguous
and frequently abusive meanings that, for all its rapacity, nobody seems to want
to notice anymore how decisive the pursuit of geographical discovery has been
for the future of human civilization.

Imperial growth was an inevitable evolutionary process, and I sincerely
believe that the only honourable and well-intentioned thing that the
Cosmopolitan West can do for its successors is to retain its expansive genius.
“Adapt or perish,” said H. G. Wells. And the problem was as well stated by
Stephen Hawking when he announced that the survival of the human race depends on
its ability to spread out into Space.

It may strain credulity, but it is an astonishing fact that the total military expenditure for the war in Iraq has
been estimated at some $ 2000 billion. This is the more remarkable when it is
remembered that the total cost for the Apollo space program which put the first
man on the moon was less than $ 25 billion. The pursuit of knowledge is the
cornerstone of our civilization, and while American, Russian and European
technologies are still engaged in a series of evolutionary research projects,
especially in the fields of cosmology and planetary physics, it is
understandable, perhaps, that the idea of interplanetary migration is the
furthest thing from the minds of those still in the process of industrial
development. Futurists might well be excited about the prospect of a racially
heterogeneous planet, but I, myself, wonder sometimes if it is not up to “us” to
force the pace and light the fuse that leads into Space, rather than succumb to
the law of diminishing returns and face the potential collapse of our advanced
technological societies and a possible reversal of human existence, through
sheer force of numbers, to the primitive subsistence level?

The US population clock continues to tick upwards at the rate of one
person every 11 seconds. But, unless I’m much mistaken, each person is born into
the dawn of a new age. An age, in fact, on the brink of changes more sweeping
than any the world has seen for centuries, for the winds of those changes, I’m
afraid, and the conflicts that engender them, will be absolutely massive.


Dreamy

P.S. Parts of this post have already appeared in previous publications.

9 comments:

mutleythedog said...

Well you are in a funny mood.. I have laid in seveb cans of Asda Irish stew, seven fray bentoes pies, a box of candles and some string... shall I survive the coming mother of all conflicts?

Captain Swann said...

You're lovely.

Jonathan said...

'Dumbed down into a
service culture with no real sense of its own purpose, the emancipated West has
never recovered from the scourge of political correctness which taught its youth
to be ashamed of their history. We have nothing to offer but apologies, which is
the meanest of all legacies to pass on to the emerging New World.'

Masterfully put. Oddly disorienting, too, to those emerging countries which wish to ape and imitate our economic and material success. People from the developin world want to learn from us, study in our universities, make use of our economies in our lands while residing here, while exporting what they have learnt back home, inso far as their traditionalists will let them. And yet we tell them that we are shit.

How surreal is that? And we only believe we're shit because we think they do, that they have a reason to, and that we need to appease them in their postulated anger against us (ok, there is some anger, I grant).

Of course I realise they want the best of both worlds - knowledge and progressive technological, economic examples from the west, but without the western political dominance that was thrown off in the 20th century, and cultural dominace which they fear, reasonably enough to an extent, threatens their own cultural integrity. And I agree that they have the right to both worlds, why not?

But why does this mean that we need to lacerate ourselves, however, in paroxysms of shame? While those few amongst the developing world who do hate us will thank us for this self-hatred for the opportunities our effeteness gives them, I suspect most will think we're crazy.

I agree Captain, she is lovely.

Jonathan said...

Which publications? How do I get my paws on them? Please don't be shy now.

I am presuming that by 'publications' you are not referring only to previous blog posts?

Selena Dreamy said...

I’m referring to a publication that appeared in 1996, but, due to some perceived homophobic (!?) sleight was never actively promoted. Sporadic passages from it have appeared throughout my blogs. A 2007 publication will - in a rehearsal of the real confrontation to come - be outed on this blog at a time of my choosing.

D.

Selena Dreamy said...

Oi, Mutley, my boyfriends want to know if you and I are engaged...?

Jonathan said...

I look forward to the outing Selena!

'Shyness is nice but shyness will...'etc

mutleythedog said...

I am certainly up for it - can I do it with the boyfriends as well...a kind of group civil partnership.. oh have I caused the collapse of western civilisation at all?

Selena Dreamy said...

Yep, you're the living embodiment of it!