The Rangers, Indians, animals and women
by Andrea Elizabeth
‘He [H.L. Mencken] … conducted an epistolary debate on individualism with a socialist acquaintance that eventually appeared in book form as Men versus the Man … Men versus the Man shows how his political thinking had solidified — hardened, really. The law of the survival of the fittest, he declares, is “immutable,” thus making socialism an absurdity; human progress is the product of the will to power, and all social arrangements failing to take this fact into account are doomed to failure; inequality is natural, even desirable, both in and of itself and as an alternative to mob rule; the world exists to be run by “the first-caste man.” ‘(quote in this very interesting, though sometimes disturbing, article by John Derbyshire. H/T facebook friend)
My newly awakened sense of ‘go get ’em’ in this World Series bid is leading me back to my individualistic political mindset. By the way, it is interesting to me that the article links individualism with nationalism, which is a group identity. I disagree with the point made about inequality, but see how one must accept a certain version of it to promote individualism. We do not all have the same abilities. My view on education has been that everyone can learn. I have not thought that much about can everyone think. I think my opinion about this comes largely from having a brother who was born with some brain damage. In many ways I think he was put in a category and not challenged enough. I think he could have excelled more than he did but for the “tyranny of low expectations” (G.W. Bush). I sense that tyranny in some places of the article.
On the other hand, for two of our six children it seems that most subjects come easier and more naturally to them than the other four, though of course they all excel in their own ways. The article does give a nod to people whose strengths do not match the current demand, and that this demand may change in time. For those two sons, however, it seems they have less blocks to learning. The wheels seem more greased. I think that everyone’s mind has a capacity to explore an infinite variety of subjects to an infinite degree, and some people’s bodies let them go further than others (because of the fall) in either sense. Inheritance (instead of “nature”), nurture, and will contribute to which limitations are placed on us. But we are not made to be limited. Our wills (still possibly shaped by inheritance and nurture) will keep us individuals though, even if all limitations are someday removed.
So here we are with varying strengths in varying areas. What about nationalism, which I’ll use as an affiliation with a group, and how we treat those “weaker”? Socialism seeks to even the playing field, which to some extent is the accepted thing to do nowadays. There are even new rules that keep rich baseball teams (Yankees) from buying all the best players. I don’t mind this, but what I mind more is that teams with a city’s name on them don’t have players from that area. But that’s not too irritating because I believe in adoption.
I also like the idea of the strong being able to see how far they can go. But that leads to the Yankees going to the World Series every year, monopolies, slave labor, genocide, extinction of animals and ancient trees, and women wearing burkas. Ideally strong people will be good sports and nice Christians and consider not only can we, but should we. Historically laws have to make this happen.
Back to the Rangers. On one hand I don’t like the Giants’ intimidating beards, or San Francisco’s non-Bible belt behaviors. On the other hand, I don’t want them to adopt our behaviors just to even the playing field. May the best team win, whatever that means.