Monday, May 12, 2014

Fruits of Postmodernism

Take a look at this blog post I just saw on facebook. It’s a professor who has served on a jury and seen a poor black couple who don’t have a mental framework that allows them to interact successfully with the court system.
This is what post modernism does to it’s weakest. It degrades and humiliates those who can’t defend themselves against it.
This is the attitude I see demonstrated in this article:

    I have this system of civilization that uses knowable truth, and the justice of equality before the law, and respect for authority. I don’t believe in truth, or blind justice, or authority. Or at least I don’t think they are worth defending as true virtues. But the system works well enough, and we don’t have anything that might be better. So by pragmatism we keep using this system.
    I keep pushing buttons and pulling levers in this system even though they don’t have any real meaning for me. This works for me because my cultural programming tells me what buttons to push and what levers to pull, but I don’t believe in any overriding principle that distinguishes moves with an abstract value from the ones that are purely cultural. In fact it makes me feel uncomfortable and like I have to defend myself against a charge of insensitivity to even glancing mention the pattern behind which behaviors that are practically useful.
    So I’ll retreat from that uncomfortable feeling. I’ll keep promoting nihilistic epistemology and moral relativism in the name social justice and multiculturalism. I’ll let it flow down hill until it arrives, striped edifying allusions and cushioning academic detachment, among the poor and the socially disconnected.
    bounty from your champions on high: the process of taking the identity “helpless victim” labeled as empowerment; substituting faceless and undefeatable enemies for practical problems labeled as constructive action. pounding on the table without reference to either facts or law labeled as meaningful communication.
And when I see the poisoned lives and blighted hopes. I’ll recognize that all post modernism has to say is tut-tut, so sad, not my job. And I’ll recognize the inadequacy, but I won't have anything else to offer.
Pounding on the table from Hucksters
I don’t know if the professor that wrote this particular blog post is personally postmodernist or just subconsciously infected by its meme floating around academia. And yes, I’ve pounded on that table a little myself here. But I do think there is a real fact at issue here. A philosophy that denies any legitimate judgment between different “ways of knowing” or different “ways of experiencing reality” is helpless to explain, and therefore can teach, why some stories must be both internally consistent and externally congruent with reality. When someone is caught by a fact check in a legal or professional situation, all postmodernists can do is shudder as the social solecism and turn their backs on the unfortunate faux pas. They can’t put up warning signs ahead of time. So to the extent postmodernism has infected our education system under the guise of cultural sensitivity, it is making social mobility very hard and causing the currently excluded a lot of pain.     
A can’t do much by myself but I can tell friends the truth rather than the common lies that make that make them feel good so that we can all feel good about each other. And I can recommend other to do the same, because a little honesty now could save a friend a lot of pain later.