"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Friday, December 15, 2023

Hardwired Cultural Genes - The Folly Of Trying To Reform America

America's cultural DNA is hardwired.  No matter how much the Left may insist on the possibility of change and inevitable progress towards a peaceful, verdant community, it will never happen.  America is still the Wild West, disputes settled in gunfights, capitalism still as potent and universal as in the days of the Robber Barons, Puritanism the law of the land despite the Sixties, and Hollywood and Las Vegas - cities of glitz, glamour, beauty, and image - are still the heart and soul of America. 

Governments have come and gone, demographics ebb and flow.  We are less white than we were, but everyone from top to bottom is middle class at heart, believer in the ethos of opportunity, advantage, hard work, and success. 

The bottom tier is no different, albeit with a different interpretation of the moral code.  The ghetto to the outsider is a place of dysfunction - a horribly misshapen, misruled, and chaotic place of crime, abuse, and indifference.  To the insider, it is just like the rest of America, fighting for turf, wealth, influence, respect, and recognition.  The gangs of Anacostia are no different than the investment banks of Wall Street - cabals of smart, determined, ambitious men out to get their at any cost.  The ghetto man is no different from America's early industrialists - Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, and their competitors - raw, unrestrained, unrepentant men bent on power, hegemony, and domination. 

What is governance in America other than the Gangs of New York - the Irish and the 'Natives' both out for control of the city's streets or the nation?  Absent the fist fights or shoot-em-outs, the Congress is no different from the lawless corrals of the Arizona Territory; or from Conrad's Heart of Darkness.  Compromise is a weakness, a de facto capitulation, an unnecessary retreat from a winnable battle. 

There is no civility in New York real estate, Silicon Valley, Detroit, or Hollywood - the moguls there are not so much out to make a buck, but to make barrels and vats of it; and on the way to smother, dismember, and neuter all competitors, 

The American Left is trying its best to smooth the edges, unruffle the feathers, and pat out the wrinkles of America.  'Why can't we just all get along', said Rodney King, lionized by those who saw him as the victim of the police state but who had to eat crow when he got thrown back in the slammer.  An unchanged, unreformed social reprobate.  He never wanted to get alone with anybody; and no one does unless it suits them.  Societies whether families, gangs, or political parties exist only for influence and strength in numbers against The Other.  We make nice when it is in our interest. 

Which is why the country is restive at best, angry at worst at progressives' constant hammering about doing good.  Gays, blacks, transgenders, women, immigrants all are to be loved, respected, included, and cared for, social reformers insist.  

The environment cannot be left alone, they say; yet in total historical ignorance forget that Man is part of the environment both influencing and influenced part of the ebb and flow of geologic time. 

No wonder why the bile is rising.  Who are they to give us our marching orders?  The Biden years of idealistic moralizing, pie-in-the-sky utopianism, and a simplistic view of human nature, human society, and the inevitable repetition of history have only served to rile up the population. 

Why are they so surprised that Donald Trump whom they have branded as the anti-Christ, Beelzebub, Satan, and the very incarnation of evil, is beating their man in the polls by substantial margins while his numbers are underwater?  In facile, dismissive language, they add fuel to the fire.  Voters for Trump are simply stupid, they say, ignoramuses who are too dumb to know better. 

'America is changing', idealists claim.  We are a rainbow nation of beautiful people of color and vibrant sexual identity - all of whom want nothing of the identity politics of their sponsors.  Black, brown, yellow, and everything in between want what Americans have wanted since 1776.  'Government is not the solution', said Ronald Reagan, 'it is the problem'; and decades later Democrats have failed to understand, have ignored human hardwiring and history, and have plodded on as though government is a right, not an unnecessary evil.


Why are thousands of immigrants crossing the Rio Grande to El Norte? Because of our compassionate, knowing, sympathetic, harboring government? 

Despite the hand-wringing faux compassion of the Left, these immigrants are not oppressed, abused, and put-upon refugees but economic migrants who want what Italians, Irish, and Poles wanted.  While we may have no storied cultural history and have nothing to compare to the grandeur of European, Russian, Japanese, Indian, and Chinese empires, our culture is procedural - a place where anyone can make money, opportunity is sacrosanct, and the individual, not the government, is the core of democratic enterprise. 

The first colonizers of America set tone for our ethos.  Spanish, French, English, and Dutch colonists came here to make their fortune, took land, tilled it, built on it, and expanded their territories.  Early Americans followed suit and soon America was a Republic from East to West.  Farmers, miners, sailors, fishermen, merchants, builders were all out to settle and profit.  Those who came here after those first Americans were no different.  They wanted theirs and got it. 

'Oh, but the poverty', reformers moan, and start dismantling and disabling private enterprise in the vain hope of rooting out inequality.  Social castration, no more no less - an attempt to neuter and spay the body politic. 

Conservatives, however, are in the wings, waiting a few more months to have a say.  'There is nothing permanent but change' says the Buddhist adage, and if anything was ever true, it is that; and the ebb and flow of politics is its headliner.  For all the true belief behind the social justice movement, and for all the sweat and tears to create a more equitable, fair inclusive America, it is a waste of time.  Americans haven't changed one bit since the first Pilgrim stepped off the boat, and won't change till Armageddon. 

Social Darwinism has been replaced by Cultural Genetics.  Societies - collectivities of individuals - behave in like manner.  Their members are hardwired for aggression, territorialism, and self-interest, and so inevitably are they.  Conservatives understand human nature and the nature of hardwiring; liberals deny it.  A comedy of errors or Buddhist wisdom? 

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