Ernie: "For all their many flaws, I actually am grateful to the social constructivist
for reminding us that we never know our own blind spots." For sure, point well taken. However, where I am these days is in full dudgeon against the extremes of subjectivisim. The valid insights of, say, the feminists of the 1970s or the social critics of the 1980s, are now ancient history. There was, for certain, real need to become aware of our biases, something often unlikely during the post Viet Nam era or the era of Reagan. But the pendulum has not only swung the other direction, in cases it has been separated from reality altogether. This is especially notable in two instances, feminist theory and so-called "queer theory," and we might mention a third case, black separatism, i.e. black nationalism. Who is most to blame? I don't know but certainly Jacques Derrida and the other deconstructionists played a leading role; so did at least a few thinkers associated with the Frankfurt School, although I don't want to go too far in criticizing the Frankfurt people since that line of attack can easily slide over into conspiracy theory. Regardless, we are now reaping the whirlwind, Queer theory effects me the most simply because I have done as much research into the pathologies of homosexuality as I have and, accordingly, there has been no escape from the phenomenon. You know, blaming straight white males for you-name-it, for example Re: "heterosexist bias" in pointing out that kids do best, are least likely to suffer psychological maladies, when they have two opposite sex parents. But queer theory goes much further in claiming against all objective evidence that we are 'evolving' toward the rise of a homosexual society in which all religious values will be replaced by homo-normative values. It is the rise of Altman's "homosexualization of America" thesis of the 1980s, now being mainstreamed and, in the process, infecting private consciousness on the part of virtually everyone who, these days, argues on behalf of "gay rights." They are oblivious to the source of their ideology and oblivious to the real world objectives of that ideology. All of this and they feel so "proud" to be "enlightened." The weakness of current critiques of objectivity, said to be impossible anyway, is that where this gets us is to that place where, in the 1920s, Weimar Germany was getting, a breakdown in credibiliity in just about all "family values." This opens the door wide to nihilisim, to anything goes libertarianism, and, hence to virulent strains of populism. Mind you, I am pro-populist, but this refers to the 1890s version of populism, not to the authoritarian forms that have arisen since. It is the authoritarian forms that all-too-easily slide over into full fledged hard Right and hard Left authoritarianisms. Finally, I define RC in large part as research centered. This refers to the scientific method, or as much of that method as we can make use of in ordinary prose. For me this means that objectivity, as much objectivity as possible, is the necessary foundation of Radical Centrism. Billy =============================== ________________________________ From: firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com> on behalf of Centroids <drer...@radicalcentrism.org> Sent: Tuesday, March 6, 2018 8:41 AM To: RadicalCentrism@googlegroups.com Subject: Re: [RC] Fwd: [FoRK] Science Wars: Is Science a Social Construct?, Women's Studies as Virus Hi Billy, I wonder what Ernie's take on the video is. Mostly I thought you’d enjoy a good kindred spirit rant, from the email as much as the video. However, I must also confess to being a “weak” social constructivist. :-) Obviously I agree that the long term answers of science are determined by the evidence. But the questions considered worth asking – and how those answers are interpreted – are very deeply socially constructed. One interesting example I I heard from the humanities is how there was no “philosophy of religion“ before the enlightenment, because religion was just assumed. Just as there is no “philosophy of secularism“ now. For all their many flaws, I actually am grateful to the social constructivist for reminding us that we never know our own blind spots. 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