Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Final Solution: Towards a Value Free Politics

Even in the most altruistically oriented social organizations, a top dog generally emerges. Hive mind is a much talked about in terms of social media, but ultimately humans function more like predators with ideologies only furnishing the silver coating for Darwinian survival of the fittest. Herbert Spencer’s Social Darwinism is actually the most profound synthesis of the biological and social drives. What differentiates the ethos of the current incoming administration from say the Obama era, however, is what might be called “value free” politics. President elect Trump’s early pronunciamentos and behavior have the quality of the reality TV world which is the school of thinking, if there was one, in which his candidacy was melded. The Apprentice is the name of the Trump’s show but one of the most popular reality shows on TV is called Survivor. The way in which potential candidates for cabinet positions have appeared in front of the cameras in the lobby of Trump Tower is probably a microcosm of the way in which both domestic and foreign policy issues will be dealt with during the Trump administration. Al Gore made a cameo appearance on the part of the environment (with Ivanka), but Scott Pruitt was Trump's choice for the EPA. Mitt Romney, who would have been a concession of the kind that Obama made when he chose Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, was trumped by Rex Tillerson, a protégé of one of the greatest survivalists of all times, Vladimir Putin. The one missing ingredient is values. You might say that making “America great” is a value, but it’s a value that flies in the face of the constitution which is all about means rather than ends and producing greatness through an emphasis on the kind of  process that Trump is already eschewing.

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