Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Intellectual Honesty is like a Flower that Blooms Once a Thousand Years

On my way to get a hair cut this morning, I realized that most people thrive on the idea that "reality is what they make of it." They support this fallacy by talking about how good or bad they feel in relation to events that occur in their lives.

But imagine what would happen, if all the sudden, an intellectually honest person came along and objectively deconstructed the whole facade we have created for ourselves of a comfortable existence and made life much harder, how much harder would it be to argue for ideas we hold dear to us when they could actually cost us something?

This is why it is important to 1.) understand what you are arguing for and 2.) make sure you argue for it well enough to convince others in its validity. If popularity is the surrogate of intellect in the feel-good society we can welcome the brave new world with all the psychotropic drugs we want, but the reality of all situations comes crashing in sooner or later to establish itself as a new functional reality with the values someone else has chosen for you rather than the values of your choosing or that you assert.

Libertarianism is hard to argue for in a feel-good society, tolerance is hard to argue for when intolerance in codified into a norm, prosperity outside of the government subsidy is hard to argue for when people depend on the government, and expect it to force them into certain behavior patterns. But all things worth arguing for are with self-assessment and intellectual honesty and if I know anything about intellectual honesty, and I am not so sure I do, it is big enough to include both my subjective "feeling" and my objective and rational belief in reason.

Is that too little too late for a post-modern world obsessed with its own identity while the world around it slowly deconstructs its fallacious imagination? The Enlightenment is just beginning, but intellectual honesty must be tough enough to admit all we are going to have to lose for it to blossom; it is like a flower blooming once every thousand years. Reason is the stepping stone for all important achievements in thought, and as much as some may not like to admit it, Libertarianism is the progenitor of every liberty every person, everywhere enjoys in one form or another.

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