In my opinion, there may not be a more destructive philosophy stalking the land than political correctness.
When you break it down, political correctness is akin to a religion where instead of worshipping gods people worship an ever-widening universe of ‘approved’ human traits and beliefs while damning others.
Being a transsexual is on the approved list, being a miner, petroleum engineer or increasingly a middle-aged white guy is on list to be damned.
The danger lies in the fact that there is no ‘bible’ for this particular religion. Therefore, by extension, there are no defined parameters for that which qualifies as worthy of worship or damnation.
Instead, the lists are determined by the very worst category of people: bleeding heart liberal bureaucrats and their supplicating supporters and media masters.
And, of course, those who feel they should be included on the list for special treatment.
In the beginning, political correctness primarily embraced the notion that no one should be discriminated against based on race, religion, gender, etc. Fair enough, you might say.
The problem with this nub of an idea is that when you view the technicalities, it becomes immediately clear that passing laws to enforce these ideas invariably runs contrary to the foundation stones of a free society.
One relatively recent example was that of a Colorado baker who, despite his strong religious beliefs to the contrary, was forced by a judge to make wedding cakes for gay marriages.
In a free society, the gay couple would take their business elsewhere. And, for good measure, they might even organize a protest in an attempt to get the baker to reconsider his position.
That’s not how it works today.
The real problem, however, is not about Colorado bakers and gay wedding cakes, it is that such ideas invariably spread like intellectual kudzu and in no time at all choke all competing ideas.
Moreover, the idea begins to morph and the next thing you know the umbrella over real or perceived discriminations covers virtually everything that any group with any grievance trots out.
In today’s world, we are told the following groups are now targets of discrimination and should therefore be treated as members of a special victim class:
All races, except whites who are considered “privileged” and therefore fair game. In a recent posting I pointed to the hard statistics documenting that people of a certain color were far more likely to commit violence than other colors in the proverbial rainbow. I can assure you, facts or not, my sharing that information would be considering politically incorrect.
All religions, no matter how warped. Did you know Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the Sudan -- where something like 80% of the women have had their genitals mutilated, and keeping slaves is still part of the social norm -- are members of the United Nation’s Commission on the Status of Women? When I first heard that, I thought it was a joke, but the only joke is that the US and other civilized countries continue to foot the bill for the UN.
All sexualities. I was surprised to learn that the acronym for the victimized sexual groups has been expanded to LGBTQIA. I was able to figure out the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transexual and Queer components, but was stumped by the “I” and “A”? The answer I subsequently learned is: “Intersexual” which is apparently someone who doesn’t consider themselves of either sex, and “Asexual” someone who doesn’t care much either way.
While I consider marriage as something the state – and the church – should stay out of, the way things are going can anyone doubt that it is just a matter of time before we see the legalization of polygamy in the western countries?
Women. According to the PC crowd, it is a no-no to rape, enslave or beat women. Unless, of course, you are a practicing Muslim in which case allowances must be made. Regardless, it is against the law in most civilized countries to rape, enslave or beat anyone… so special rules to protect women in particular are redundant. But it doesn’t stop there, as the new PC protections treat women like helpless kittens, making dating an actively risky proposition for men. Get the signal even a little bit wrong, or piss off a former lover and next thing you know the PC police will have you in manacles. Or, like Julian Assange, hiding out in some foreign embassy.
Children. In Scotland every child at birth is now assigned an state employed “guardian” whose job is to look after their rights until they attain the age of 18. That the state would assume onto itself the role traditionally fulfilled by parents is about as arrogant and PC as it gets. And it is a very big step onto the down escalator to a fascist society where the ‘right’ sort of people dictate every move of the ignorant plebs (i.e. the rest of us).
There are other protected classes of people and even a movement to extend human rights to animals but as things are starting to get a little wobbly, I think it’s a good time to stop and actually define the meaning of ‘politically correct? According to one comprehensive online guide on the topic:
"Politically correct" is a bit of a misnomer—it isn't about being right, it's about being respectful and considerate. Being politically correct means that you avoid expressions and actions that may exclude, marginalize, or offend a particular group of people. The term first became popular during the 1970s and 1980s. Political correctness has an important purpose: it promotes equality by demonstrating an understanding that all people and groups are valuable to society regardless of race, culture, religion, gender, or sexual orientation.
To be sure you don’t step on the wrong side of the PC line, here’s a link to the guide. I am so glad I took the time to read it carefully or I might not have learned this interesting fact:
“Some women have penises and some men have clitorises”
Who could have known? In addition, I learned…
“Keep your questions respectful and not too personal. "What do your genitals look like?" is a very private question.”
Of course, unless you are a bible- or koran-thumper or shy about using the same bathroom as a gender-challenged individual, a person’s sexual preferences should be of no consequence.
What is of consequence, however, is the predictable outcome when we allow a group of PC-minded bureaucrats – and that is a prerequisite to work in government these days -- to redefine how the world should work.
Namely, leaving the definition of what’s right and wrong entirely to bureaucratic interpretation means these bureaucrats with all their committees and commissions can conjure up pretty much any rule and make it stick, because to argue against said rule would be to argue in favor of discrimination.
This is how you get quotas or the spread of notions that everyone should have everything in roughly equal proportions. Well, not quite: because of past discrimination, the protected groups are entitled to reparations in the form of special rights and privileges.
PC In Action
It has long been presaged that over the next couple of decades the European cultures of old will be overrun by former residents of the Middle East or, more correctly, their off-spring.
With the wave of refugees currently washing through the borders, that time-table has likely just been moved up and maybe by quite a bit.
Some have questioned, why now? There are a number of answers to the question, but it’s really not all that complex.
The Middle East sucks. Sorry, it just does.
The Middle East has, once again, been destabilized. Yes, Bush’s war played a big role and, yes, Obama doubled-down with the insane meddling in Libya and Syria, but the region has been unstable since the beginning of recorded history so one must keep these things in perspective.
Per #1, people who up and leave to find a better life know that life will be better in Europe than in, say, Turkey.
But, here’s the thing, the wave of refugees is only possible because of political correctness. If instead of all the public hang-wringing and debate, Europe’s leaders said, “Sorry, we have a process in place for allowing immigrants into the country and the line forms there” the refugees would have second thoughts about setting forth on their journey to Europe.
While there’s a good case to be made for getting rid of all borders, passports and other trappings of the nation states, given that we are talking about democracies then, should the majority of the citizenry wish to protect their national character and preserve their culture, having certain reasonable guidelines related to immigration is justifiable.
Instead what's happening is that the PC bureaucrats are erasing the rules of orderly immigration. They are doing so out of guilt and shame at their privileged circumstances (i.e. they weren’t born in the Middle East), then pushed into further action by the media and the heart-tugging imagery of dead children and other tragedies.
But actions have consequences and the consequences of recent proposals by European bureaucrats about opening their arms for the refugees across Europe is the equivalent of turning on the red light at a Krispy Kreme donut shop.
Except instead of signaling that the production line is baking hot fresh donuts, in Europe’s case it will be signaling to pretty much everyone in the Middle East and all the bordering countries that the doors are wide open.
Of course, everyone in the region knows that once you are in the door the European socialist states will shower you with subsidized housing, supplemental income, food handouts, free medical and more. And that makes the upside for uprooting your family and heading to Europe all the more attractive.
My prediction is that the current wave of refugees will turn out to be but a ripple compared to what’s coming: the equivalent of a European land rush. Apparently there is a boom market underway for forged Syrian documents.
Of course, there will be groups that push back – a friend in Germany reports that certain nationalist groups have begun setting fire to refugee camps, a sure sign of the societal stress that will only worsen as the influx of refugees accelerates.
But even such drastic and unpleasant actions won’t slow things down in the slightest, because the pressure is not just coming from the outside, it’s also coming from the inside – from the PC bureaucrats who are afraid of offending anyone by enforcing immigration rules.
In short, it’s the proverbial Pandora’s box. It’ wide open and the European bureaucrats aren’t about to do an about face and start deporting their new wards en masse.
Can anyone doubt that the traditional cultures of Europe are on the fast track to extinction or, based on the unbroken historical record of centuries of unrest and mayhem in the Middle East, are entering a new era of chaos on the continent?
Can Anything Be Done?
This is all just a matter of opinion, but I do think that as the native Germans, Austrians, French and so forth observe the accelerating death of their traditional cultures there could be a political backlash.
Which is to say that anti-immigrant parties may rise in the polls and even make it into power. That, in turn, will lead to conflict because once settled, there is no way the former refugees are going to return quietly to whence they came.
But I don’t see how the whole idea of political correctness will be uprooted. It is too deeply entrenched here, there and everywhere.
So, no. Like Marxism before it, political correctness will run its full course, remaking the world as it does.
What will that world look like in 5, 10, 20 years?
Given the lack of clear parameters for the movement, it’s impossible to know but I suspect it is not going to be the sort of world I’d want to live in.
Regardless, I do know I’ll be watching as events unfold from Cafayate, Argentina where life continues largely untouched by the PC crowd. I have mentioned this before, but it never fails to make me smile when I hear the locals affectionately refer to each other by their most prominent physical characteristics – baldy, fatty, skinny, etc. - and no one gets offended in the slightest.
I had planned on touching on investment markets this week, but got busy with other things so I’ll save that for next week… probably.
Until then, happy trails!