uziq wrote:you are having a hard time following my point. my point about the hairdressers and grocers wasn't being bothered that they had a vote or a political opinion, it's that they are evidence that people have been brought to great levels of passion and anger about 'issues' and events which heretofore they didn't give a fig about. that's my point about the perils of your much-vaunted 'political commitment'. i don't see much to applaud in a world where people who were never much bothered about politics are suddenly whipped into an anti-EU or anti-migrant frenzy by facebook ad campaigns, suddenly becoming obsessed with something like the EU when for decades prior, of literally much the same thing, they didn't care at all. but you seem to think having an out-and-out political conviction is great.
you are propped up in this thinking by ridiculously naive and jejune thinking by people like rorty, written no doubt in the 1970s or the 1990s or something and echoing many fine and noble sentiments by the likes of habermas and, yes, kant before it. it has very little purchase in the way electoral politics are conducted (and influenced) in 2020. we don't have the same public sphere, the same stable fourth estate and independence of fact/truth, or the same liberal 'sensus communis' (if you really want me to get into kant). god knows why you keep banging on about 'edifying exchanges' and dialogue like some undergraduate at the debating society. how much edification goes on between the remainers and brexiters, do you think?
the EU is a done deal, i give it the decade to die out or else convulse into something else other than its current form. once merkel goes, france and germany will soon be butting heads again, much to the expense of the other paltry powers left in the bargaining ring. not only are they age-old economic rivals, but now they are forced into contrary ideological positions vis-a-vis europe and hot issues like migration: macron going for a unifying approach but the germans being forced into making concessions to, quelle surprise, anti-migrant right populism. you have lean years of recession ahead with leaders merely paying lip service to the 'ideals' of the union, an empty rhetorical exercise but with no one daring to leap into the abyss. enjoy!
My argument for democratic participation did not imply that I'm alright with outright manipulation and abuse of the political process. I have as little regard and tolerance for cambridge analytica as do you; it's a blight on democracy. But people heretefore not caring about politics is exactly part of the problem. It's current events forcing the complacent to suddenly adopt a political stance. If political activism were more widespread and culturally embedded I believe we'd have a (slightly) more informed but also more tolerant democracy less vulnerable to this sort of chaotic upheaval. Perhaps wishful thinking, but even among intelligent people (not tracy the hairdresser) actual political involvement and participation is shockingly low and has been declining for years. What's left are parties that are disconnected from the population at large, seem stuck in the 60s in their modus operandi and who are very prone to takeovers by tiny radical elements, allowed to thrive by the absence of reasoned opposition or really anyone else.
As if the ideal of democratic participation started and ended with Rorty, or as if I copy pasted his book into my own convictions. Simply put I find the edifying conversation and underlying reasoning of why it's important compelling. Which, shocker, was based on the notion that real objective truth doesn't exist and that it isn't an independent concept. But as I stated I don't share his overly optimistic outlook on what it will achieve, but do see it as the right way forward for multicultural and democratic societies. It's pretty fucking inane that you completely discard these ideas because they stem from the 80s, as they're now more relevant than ever. Keep quoting poets from the 1900s reflecting on world war 1 and the struggle for irish independence though, that'll sure be relevant contemporary insight.
People (especially in the UK) have been predicting the EU's imminent demise for decades. While of course I can't deny that I'm uncertain about its future as well, I wholeheartedly support its continued existence. If for the mere fact that were the EU to be destroyed today it will simply be rebuilt again tomorrow. It's a necessary part of European life and it's part of the process of normalisation of that institution's place in society that people will question and oppose its continued relevance. The same thing happened with literally every national government we have today, the position of which in your every day life and its right to rule hardly being uncontested in its formative decades if not centuries.
Last edited by Larssen (2020-04-02 08:29:26)