Sunday, May 21, 2017

Power and Adequacy

Some people have accused me of being power-hungry. The real issues are a lot deeper.
Growing up, I was exposed to good ideas and good values. That was especially the case with people who had interest in literature and the arts. I saw these values a people who had them get stomped upon in society. They ended up finding themselves in powerless positions in which their values counted for nothing. I decided that this was wrong. Instead I have been looking for ways that these values can matter – and people who have them can have better lives.
I am not looking for power for myself. I am looking for influence of good values.
One time that I’d had it with the lack of value for poetry, arts and philosophy was high school. I began very aggressively challenging the way that people thought, at one point introducing annoying cognitions such as “You don’t exist.” At a more mature age I have been scrutinizing all sorts of issues from gender relations to different cultural practices to economics. I’ve found that it’s not enough to reach art history majors. I also have to reach people otherwise would not care.
Is it a power thing? Possibly in a way, but not quite as conceptualized. I myself do not want to rule anyone. I want good values to matter. And that means confronting the things that stand in their way.
Another claim that I’ve heard is that I’m driven by a sense of inadequacy. The intellectual influence behind this is Alfred Adler, who claimed that people were driven by “adequacy striving” and that everything else was compensation for inadequacy real or perceived. There is a problem with that – a big problem. This would pathologize everything that has taken humanity from caveman to man on the moon. No man is an adequate match for a tiger, nor should he strive to be an adequate match for a tiger. He outsmarts the tiger using superior methodology and in so doing advances the lot of humankind.
Occasionally the monkey-minded people will come in possession of human brain arguments and use them to advance the monkey agenda. We most certainly see that in action on both the left and the right. If someone is driven by adequacy striving, that is his business. It does not have to be my problem or that of anyone else. To hell with the atavistic concept of adequacy. Let ghetto thugs be adequate with one another and instead produce something that’s worthy of having been produced – in business, in science, in art, what have you.


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