It’s easy to understand in math why you cannot force an incorrect formula to be correct. It would lead to the rewriting of math itself.
For instance, suppose that the below had to be true in order for your understanding of the world to work:
If 1 is greater than 2, then how can 1+1 = 2? That would mean 2=2 while at the same time 2>2. This is easy to understand with math, but a lot harder to understand with ideology.
Changing one variable can cause a whole system of values, presuppositions, and knowledge to become completely invalid. A minor change can make someone’s whole understanding of the world become incompatible with someone else’s. I believe this is what has happened with the average adherent to postmodern thinking when being compared to a liberal.
Some of the commonly agreed upon modern liberal values have been:
- Freedom of speech
- Freedom of the press
- Freedom of religion
- Free markets
- Secular governments
- International non-intervention and cooperation
- Civil rights
I don’t want to expound on how to make these values all work together in a society, as I think others have done better than I could in a simple blog. I leave it to you to read the writing of some of America’s founding fathers or John Locke.
What I want to talk about is how 1>2 became the required thinking within our society in many areas today and how a minor change like that can have huge impacts on how everyone views the world.
In the list above, civil rights and equality have been very important for making society into what we know today. The place we were 10 years ago as a society saw civil rights and equality removing all legal barriers to entry for people. Discrimination is illegal and everyone has an equal opportunity as long as they have equal abilities, motivation, and results.
1>2 is required when rewriting the liberal theories of our past with equality of outcome as the primary motivator for philosophy and law.
When you look at most liberal values, there is very little need to resolve conflict between the major axioms. My right to free speech does not impact your right to access the free market. My freedom of religion doesn’t impact your ability to consume or produce information or the news. Having a democratic government doesn’t make having a secular government harder.
Historically, having equal opportunity hasn’t conflicted with other values. Having civil rights just meant applying the rights that we value as liberals to everyone, equally.
Today, we have a new formula that is being tested. This formula is one where outcomes must be equal instead of the opportunity must be equal.
Postmodernism sees society as a power game. Those that are in charge are winning the power game and their power has to be taken away. The classes, races, and genders of people that are associated with being in charge must have their power taken away to make way for those who haven’t had power in society.
This requires getting rid of civil rights for classes of people that are doing well. This requires getting rid of free speech so that those without power can speak without threat. This requires getting rid of the free press so that information can be controlled. This requires the rejection of democracy since the majority isn’t doing the right thing. This requires abolishing the free markets since they aren’t fair for those without power.
All of this is required because of one minor change. 1>2 today, because all outcomes must be equal.