Our problem is that our people have lost the reason to unite and stay together. This often happens with majority groups, unlike the envious minorities who want to take power from them. Because we already have the power, we have turned to other things for our quest in life, things which are more specific to the individual, things that divide us and weaken us.
The ultimate consequences of our present trajectory are extremely negative, but it is hard to get people to recognize this simply by pointing out negatives. These are obscured by the ambiguities of the future and human psychological traits, like time preference habits, which focus on immediate positives at the expense of distant negatives.
In order to move people you need to recognize this simple rule: people respond more to visions of a possible future that is good than to warnings about the negative results of present day actions. Quite simply, you have to show them an ideal of what is better, because, by the principle of competition, people will pick whatever offers them a better way of life.
The kind of world we want to show them is a world where there is no guilt and no feelings of inferiority, where we are free to do what comes naturally, a world where all attempts at the "One Right Way" for "all people" have been abandoned.
Most of us â€“ if we can get it â€“ want to live in a small city or big town, have a happy nuclear family, work less, and spend more time enjoying life, while feeling that we have a sense of purpose. A good way to get people thinking about this is to propose a simple thought experiment: If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you do?
Likely answer: Move out of the city apartment or cramped gated community, and take the family to a gentle and pleasant place. Live out my life doing things that fulfill me.
Not everyone can win the lottery but suppose we adapted that to reality: advocating a society where your money went farther, where you had better options for where to live, nicer choices for potential spouses, and a safer way of life.
What I am describing is America before the great social experiments of the 1820s â€“ 1960s. It is an America that devoted itself not to ideology, but to practical, good living.
In it the first rule was that you owed nothing to anybody. You could associate with whomever you wanted and ignore everyone else. If there was a beggar in the street, you might give him a coin or not, and no one would think you were a subhuman jerk for turning him down.
There was no sense of guilt or inferiority. Everyone had a place, mainly because you could make a decent living and have a perfectly decent house outside of the city. It was boring, if you consider nightlife, crime, noise, pollution and other city stuff fascinating. People were not "intellectual," they merely thought about things.
They had more time to do it, too, because they were not constantly working to assuage those feelings of guilt and inferiority. They did not pay the 60% or higher of our tax burden that goes to welfare, government programs to save us from ourselves, social engineering and the like. Government took money to build roads and keep an army and not much else.
They also felt no guilt about associating with people like them. Protestants hung out with Protestants, Catholics with Catholics. You expected to find your spouse in your community and have a boy-next-door-girl-next-door courtship and marriage.
People were also genetically healthier. Instead of having mix-n-match genetics, they were German. Or Swedish. Or English. Or Scots. Or some mix of the above with other Western Europeans. People generally were blonder, better looking, and had better overall longevity.
Think of the pictures you see from the past. Everyone looks very similar. This meant that there were not huge variations between potential spouses, physically. You found someone you liked and wanted to form a family with, and went from there.
Jobs were not jails. You could work for a company your whole life, and no one cared if you smoked or had a martini at lunch. You left early when the work was done. There was simply less competition so there was no need to "fly the flag" and work late to show you were more obedient than the other guy.
Fewer rules defined this society as well. A few general principles went far and after that it was "use your best judgment." People were promoted on the basis not of being obedient, but because they were morally good and competent. The people making decisions above you were more careful and paid less attention to appearances.
No one expected everyone to get along. You did what you needed to, and others did the same. Crime was lower and costs were lower and people did not constantly obsess about health, money, public image and sexuality. All these things were under control of the basic goal, which was to live a normal life.
At some point the idiots and chattering neurotics got in and started convincing people that we needed an Ideology and purpose. This is what happens when societies are prosperous and happy; the people who are not happy inside start raging at those who are, and form plans to destroy them. Thus our limited democracy became demagoguery.
We can reverse this process. Already the signs are in the air politically: people know we have gone down a bad path and want a U-turn. That U-turn comes about when we throw out all the anti-discrimination, anti-poverty, and civil rights laws designed to make us live in guilt and inferiority.
With those gone, normal life returns. People attend to their own business. Better people make it up the chain of command, instead of reptiles getting promoted because they have the right ideology. And not everyone wants to come here. Why? Because the people here look a certain way and they like it that way.
It all starts with breaking the spell of appearances, and shakingÂ off the sense of guilt and inferiority. We need those less than a hole in the head. What we need instead is to trust our natural instincts and get back to the life that makes sense to us inside, instead of worrying about these outside ideologies and the way they make us all slaves to a false purpose.
Top picture: Reading in The Valley of Arconville, 1887 painting by Theodore Robinson.
Brett Stevens blogs at Amerika.org. The above article is reproduced here with his kind permission. To see more of his articles on this site search for Brett Stevens using the search box at top right.