HISTORICAL NOT HYSTERICAL

Is it due to the immediacy of the touch screen and the ephemeral nature of modern communications which so concentrates the moment? There is, so it seems, little which has the power to distract. Palm up, neck bent, finding, covering, finding conferring, searching; but for what? Even a child in a stroller is insufficient to draw its mothers attention from her screen. The ease of communication is dissolving it’s very value. Effortless eyeball and digital retrieval of a plethora of information means there is little incentive for retention. There is a sequence of instant messaging and inconsequential reaction which precludes the absorbing of meaning. This in turn results in a lack of understanding. Now as understanding is a primary driver of discovery and learning the resulting outcome is widespread ignorance.

It is a somewhat frustrating tendency of some modern thinkers and communicators, even bloggers, to draw conclusion without reference to, or knowledge of recent social history. Frustrating for the observer of such fundamental gaps in comprehending what has gone before. In an era of repetitive hollow sloganeering it would be amusing to witness the empty echoey clanging of rhetoric from these so called enlightened ones, if the stakes were not so high. It may be worthy enough to desire equality of life. It is however dangerous folly to be empassioned of a cause which, in ignorance and delusion, one advances as if to be trail blazing. The truth I’d venture to suggest is that there is very little new thinking, however much it is felt, that the times are changing. This isn’t to say society is in a state of stasis. Far from it, society is by nature organic and dynamic. The mistake resides in the belief that social change can in some way be successfully Engineered. Unfortunately, as in the discovery of the delights of sex, ideas of radical social reform are among the horizons that young people are mistaken in their view that their role is something of that of the pioneer. Almost all reforms, systems or revolutions have already been actioned. Recent history of the twentieth century alone illustrates the point. There are few successes which have resulted in benefits for the masses. Revolution brings not change but a return to the starting point. Advancement is achieved not by revolving but by incremental linear improvement to a persons social condition. As yet the concept of mutual trade has not been made redundant. It is therefore by exchange the individual finds the means to meet the needs of living. Unfortunately not all exchamge is of equal value. Achieving equilibrium at this level is where the true challenge for society is to be found.

(C)2018 Christopher Thompson