"...it's not the training to be mean but the training to be kind that is used to keep us leashed best." ~ Black Dog Red

"In case you haven't recognized the trend: it proceeds action, dissent, speech." ~ davidly, on how wars get done

"...What sort of meager, unerotic existence must a man live to find himself moved to such ecstatic heights by the mundane sniping of a congressional budget fight. The fate of human existence does not hang in the balance. The gods are not arrayed on either side. Poseiden, earth-shaker, has regrettably set his sights on the poor fishermen of northern Japan and not on Washington, D.C. where his ire might do some good--I can think of no better spot for a little wetland reclamation project, if you know what I mean. The fight is neither revolution nor apocalypse; it is hardly even a fight. A lot of apparatchiks are moving a lot of phony numbers with more zeros than a century of soccer scores around, weaving a brittle chrysalis around a gross worm that, some time hence, will emerge, untransformed, still a worm." ~ IOZ

Nov 16, 2010

What Liberals, Democratic Centralists, Hegelians and Good Progressives Cannot Admit

The purpose of the State is self-perpetuation.


Anonymous said...

A minor quibble: [A] purpose of the state is self perpetuation. The purpose of the state is to accrue power for and serve the interests of a few. Self-perpetuation is a by-product.

Randal Graves said...

I always assumed the purpose of State was to make a BCS bowl where the big bucks are.

Jack Crow said...





Jack Crow said...


I actually disagree. I was coming back to edit the original, but I'll just add my thoughts in reply to you:

If you establish a hierarchy you are establishing the means by which power duplicates itself over time.

(And the hierarchy doesn't care about noble intentions.)

The interests of the few are indistinguishable from this self-perpetuation. Their interest is, materially, self-perpetuation. The State is the few perpetuating their wealth and power. The wealth and power don't exist without the State, because it is the state which defines what wealth and power are, and who can and cannot have it.

This is not to suggest that people cannot accumulate wealth, staff and resources before they formalize a state - but that accumulation is always itself the State - be that a modern state governing hundreds of millions, with a larger total "few" than might be found in a so-called primitive state governing a few thousand



Charles F. Oxtrot said...

I like drip's comment and your reply, Jack. I had another thought on your comment, drip.

Once created, the State exists to justify and perpetuate itself.

The public rationale offered for creation of the State is always benevolent and far-reaching: we will protect you and your interests.

The private rationale is always the same: We will use you as slaves to generate our private gains.

Once created, the State just has to do two things to be successful for its creators and their heirs -- continue the profiteering, and continue the charade of promoting the public weal.

Anonymous said...

The State is the few perpetuating their wealth and power. got it, just so long as it is clear that the self-perpetuating state does so for the few and not for the future. This is what the leftists (and the rightists, for that matter) cannot bring themselves to say and it is why they cannot change anything.


Landru said...

It bums me out when all the good smartass comments are taken. Cheers to Randall and Drip.

I don't agree that the sole purpose of the state is self-perpetuation. I do still believe in the commonweal. Do I think the state is a good guardian of it? Hells no. Do I agree that states evolve to a place where the self-perpetuation motive is stronger than all others, far stronger than it should be? Sure.

Does all of this make me a sap? Whatevs.

Jack Crow said...

Is the commonweal something a person may opt out of, Landru?

Randal Graves said...

I think an individual can believe in the idea of the commonweal, enacted especially on the personal, local level where some Human Being control outside the machine, while still realizing the State doesn't care outside of bread and circuses.

By that I don't mean "working within the system to make it better even though I know it'll never kick mucho asso" (I don't know if this is what you're saying, Landru, and I don't presume to speak for you without a generous fee).

I'm sure I've got a point in there somewhere.

Landru said...

Well, you've pinched the nub, Jack--people try to opt out. Of course, semantically, definitionally, logically, realistically--they can't.

More later, abbreviated lunchtime surf today.

And no, Randal, I was mostly just whining and pretending to be hurt. Which I'm not. Though it's unclear precisely which of the labels applies to me.

almostinfamous said...

all the talk about 'sustainability' is a synonimized version of trying to figure out how to perpetuate the status quo, no?

and given that we have a natural drive to perpetuate our species(thanks a lot, DNA!), i dont see why this is something that anyone is(or should be) in denial about.