Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Return of Shame

Law, at its best, prevents people from doing bad things.  And that's at its best.

A lot of times people just don't obey laws (criminals) and even when they do obey laws, they may not be moral.  In other words laws prohibit bad behavior, but can not compel good or moral behavior.  So while I may not murder somebody, law doesn't prevent me from racking up more credit card debt than I can afford or standing somebody up for a date.

However, society did have a tool that picked up where laws left off - shame.

Though not codified or written down, society had their own set of unspoken rules or laws called "standards" and if you violated these social standards you would be shamed and scorned.  This shame would compel you to behave appropriately and was a vital and necessary component of society in order for it to survive and succeed.

However, shame is very interesting in that it's very much like "paying taxes" or "having to work for a living."  It's a fact of life nobody likes.  You step out of line you may not go to jail, but you will be shamed by society.  Therefore, you don't get to do whatever you want to do all willy nilly.  However, also like paying taxes and having to work for a living, shame can be used as a political tool.  Specifically, when it comes to a democracy, an amoral political party can ignore the importance shame plays in society, capitalize on childish-mentalities of the lesser members of the electorate, and promise a world with no shame.

You don't want to work?  Fine!  We'll tax other undeserving people to finance your life.

You don't want to pay taxes?  Fine!  We'll make a villainized group pay them for you!

You don't want shame?  Fine!  We'll launch an all out assault on traditional historical standards, the country's historical culture, and institute moral relativism.

In short, promising the electorate the elimination of shame is nothing more than bribing them.  However unlike welfare, medicare or EBT cards, it's a psychological benefit, not a financial one.  And thus, just as sure as leftist parties across the world promise their voters other people's money, they also do their best to eliminate shame.

We see this everyday.  The idiot who couldn't do basic math and bought a house he couldn't afford is a "victim."  The unemployed Music Therapy major, living at home is "just down on his luck."  And there is no better example of the elimination of shame as we replace military veterans with "single moms" as our nation's greatest hero. So successful is the left that the political and social environment is now so hostile that it's now "shameful to shame."  If you dare criticize somebody for failing to meet a standard you are the one that is shamed.  You are accused of being rude.  Your target of shaming is even arrogant and entitled, yelling "HOW DARE YOU JUDGE ME!!!"  And if your target of shame happens to be in a "victim class" you are immediately called an "ist" (even though you are criticizing their actions and not their race, ethnicity, sex, etc. etc.).

Additionally, since shaming by its nature is a public or publicized action (i.e. - you can't secretly shame someone) you are immediately alienated and ostracized from society.  Dare you demand EBT cards be the size of a poster for all to see on a blog or a forum, employers will no longer hire you.  Dare you criticize illegal immigration and are consequently accused of racism, you cannot run for public office.  And dare you criticize single parenthood, you can forget finding a date.  In short we have fully eliminated shaming from society and all the benefits (personal responsibility being the key one) that came with it.

Naturally, a shameless society will fail.  You can make all the laws you want, but without the social norms and mores that force people to be self-reliant, responsible, and respectful units of society, those individual units will revert to their basic human instinct and decay into shameless and parasitical ones.  However, there is a consequence to society failing.  Specifically, those people who are vested in society and are moral, are going to lose the only thing that matters to them - society.  And while a high percentage of them may still be too intimidated or brainwashed to speak out, bluntly and truthfully, a certain percentage of people will realize the cost is too great and start shaming again.  Specifically, those people who have nothing left to lose.

Understand that the reason most people don't speak out against and shame the social atrocities occurring in the US is because they have too much at risk.  They have a house, they have a family, they have a career. Their entire lives have been built within this system and are thus dependent on it.  And dare they get out of line, and dare they publicly shame the wrong group, the political and social cost for them daring to point out the emperor has no clothes is that they will lose it all.  An HR nazi will be auditing your facebook posts.  Your hiring manager will get a complaint.  An Adria Richards will narc on you.  Careers in America are so fragile and employers so spineless, you dare don't rock the societal boat with shaming.  You watch that recent immigrant use her EBT card at your expense and you shut up and like it.

But what if you're part of a group with nothing left to lose?  What if you're young, endebted by previous generations to the tune of $225,000, facing a lousy job market, and no future?  What if you're part of a group that is just assumed to have benefits and privileges when that is not the case, and you're constantly accused of bigotry and being part of a "patriarchy?"  Oh, and by the way, what if a mental illness has infected the half of society you SHOULD have gotten the greatest joy out of in life and instead corrupted and spoiled them leaving you little-to-no shot in life at marriage of family?  What if your future was just plain taken away?

Why you'd be the typical young man in America today.

And it is here where shame is not only going to have a triumphant return, but it is already back in full force. 

I hate to inform all the various political groups, victim groups, protected classes, sacrosanct faux heroes and other shameless classes the left has formed, but your strategy to "shame the shamers" won't work on this group of people.  And the reason why is that your strategy hinges on one thing - that there would be an economic cost inflicted on anybody who dares to shame.  But if they have no money, no job, no career, no hope, and no future, there's nothing you can take from them.  Worst still, as they slowly start to wake up and realize just how much your anti-shaming campaign has screwed up society, they will blame you  (rightly so) for stealing and destroying their futures.  And with nothing left to do and at no cost to them, shaming you and your ideological adherents is going to become their favorite hobby.

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