Quote of the Day: Individual Sovereignty

 

“Your group identity is not your cardinal feature. That’s the great discovery of the west. That’s why the west is right. And I mean that unconditionally. The west is the only place in the world that has ever figured out that the individual is sovereign. And that’s an impossible thing to figure out. It’s amazing that we managed it. And it’s the key to everything that we’ve ever done right.”  – Jordan Peterson

This quote is key to understanding why Martin Luther King’s desire to that his “children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character” resonates so much. It also exposes the fraud that is intersectionality and identity politics. Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign, we sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

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  1. Fred Cole Inactive
    Fred Cole
    @FredCole

    Good! Now vote that way, dammit!

    • #1
  2. Ekosj Member
    Ekosj
    @Ekosj

    A wonderful quote @seawriter

    The whole ‘Groupthink’ thing has had me in a funk lately.    Thanks for re-focusing me on what’s right.

    • #2
  3. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    Seawriter:

    Your group identity is not your cardinal feature. That’s the great discovery of the west. That’s why the west is right. And I mean that unconditionally. The west is the only place in the world that has ever figured out that the individual is sovereign. And that’s an impossible thing to figure out. It’s amazing that we managed it. And it’s the key to everything that we’ve ever done right. – Jordan Peterson

    This quote is key to understanding why Martin Luther King’s desire to that his “children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character” so resonates with people. It also exposes the fraud that is intersectionality and identity politics. Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign we will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

    Why did the West figure out what was “impossible to figure out”? Could it have been an effect of the Judeo-Christian religious heritage that the left is so intent on stamping out?

    • #3
  4. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron
    @JamesGawron

    Seawriter: This quote is key to understanding why Martin Luther King’s desire to that his “children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character” so resonates with people. It also exposes the fraud that is intersectionality and identity politics. Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign we will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

    Sea,

    Thanks for this paragraph. Jordan Peterson is right on the target and is fighting the good fight to keep us from going over into the abyss.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #4
  5. Vectorman Inactive
    Vectorman
    @Vectorman

    Seawriter: Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign we will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

    Another great comment quote within a Quote of the Day – only on Ricochet!


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    • #5
  6. TheSockMonkey Coolidge
    TheSockMonkey
    @TheSockMonkey

    Seawriter: Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign we will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

    If we’re not there already.

    • #6
  7. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester
    @KentForrester

    “Your group identity is not your cardinal feature.”  Right there may be the most important difference between the Left and the Right.

    Seawriter, I see you’re a fan of Churchill, in my estimation the finest political writer of all time.  When it really counted, his words were powerful enough to move the Western World into action.

    Kent

     

     

    • #7
  8. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    TheSockMonkey (View Comment):

    Seawriter: Should we abandon the concept that the individual is sovereign we will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister by the lights of perverted science.

    If we’re not there already.

    That’s what many people believed in the spring of 1940. A few did not, and changed things.

    • #8
  9. Danny Alexander Member
    Danny Alexander
    @DannyAlexander

    The quote is excellent but I think it provides only half the picture, so to speak.

    The great discovery of the West is the ability of mankind to live, and to allow others to live, in/with a state of dialectical tension such that:  a) a person’s group identity is not his/her cardinal feature; while b) a person is morally accountable to God as God’s creation.  Note that the individual sovereignty of “a” provides latitude to a person to determine whether/how/to what extent a mediating body/institution/group/etc ought to be involved in that person’s experience of “b” — but “a” does not and cannot cancel out “b.”

    This dialectical tension doesn’t “cure” anyone of politics, incidentally.

    Just as I personally don’t cotton to the neologism “social justice,” I tend to take a dim view of the term “identity politics” — all justice has social functions/mechanisms/repercussions, and all politics have an identity component.

    In any event, in an American context, this dialectical tension might be most aptly expressed and understood as a juxtaposition of two famous Founding Father observations/contentions:  The first being Madison’s statement about the necessary evil of forming governments given that men are not angels; and the second being John Adams’ statement that the American polity under the Constitution must needs be based on the populace being a moral one for the whole setup to even work.

    The practical problem nowadays is that:  a) Woodrow Wilson was possessed of a near-total defective comprehension of “a” and “b” (per the above dialectical-tension elements) — yet somehow managed to get elected; and b) Marxism in its Leninist manifestation assumed the reins of power in a massive if moribund quasi-empire — thus providing succor and stimulus for Marxism’s adherents already in or eventually to arrive in the US.

    Obviously, Marxism seeks the extirpation of “b,” while simultaneously forcing the establishment of new modes and orders for “a,” meant to annihilate prior group identities and affiliations.  Marxists in the US managed to weather the siege imposed by Wilson and thereafter took note of how, ironically, his tactical playbook (if not his specific worldview) could enable them actually to thrive and attain significant social, cultural, and thus political sway.

    N.B.:  For the dialectical tension aspect, please refer to the following — though self-evidently Jewish in expression, these ideas comport entirely with what “the West” and the US in particular are about.

    http://etzion.org.il/en/6-majesty-and-humility

    (Sorry — There’s a Part 2 of 2 to this essay, but the Yeshivat Har Etzion site is behaving erratically and preventing my finding the 2nd URL.)

    • #9
  10. Derek Simmons Member
    Derek Simmons
    @

    Seawriter (View Comment):

    If we’re not there already.

    That’s what many people believed in the spring of 1940. A few did not, and changed things.

    And where do you see or plan on finding today’s “few”? Have you identified a ‘back-bencher’ up to the task of leadership? If not political leadership, then perhaps spiritual? Joel Osteen? If not spiritual, then perhaps an oligarch as one of the “few”? Zuckerberg?

    I like NOT to think we’re already there–so names please. If not names, then perhaps a likely venue or two.

    • #10
  11. Theodoric of Freiberg Member
    Theodoric of Freiberg
    @TheodoricofFreiberg

    Fred Cole (View Comment):
    Good! Now vote that way, dammit!

    How can you when, as Jonah Goldberg has said, you have a choice between two crap sandwiches on different kinds of bread?

    • #11
  12. Theodoric of Freiberg Member
    Theodoric of Freiberg
    @TheodoricofFreiberg

    Seawriter: The west is the only place in the world that has ever figured out that the individual is sovereign.

    I don’t believe the west’s conception of liberty is that “the individual is sovereign.” That idea would lead to anarchy. Thomas Jefferson put is thusly, “Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the limits of the law,’ because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.”

    • #12
  13. Valiuth Inactive
    Valiuth
    @Valiuth

    JoelB (View Comment):
    Why did the West figure out what was “impossible to figure out”? Could it have been an effect of the Judeo-Christian religious heritage that the left is so intent on stamping out?

    It certainly is a popular way to think around here that this is the reason. Recently I’ve been listening to a history of China. What struck me is that in their long philosophical tradition they had numerous thinkers that started formulating thoughts very much in line with the western conceptions of humanism and natural law that emerged at the end of the Medieval period and ushered in the Renascence and subsequently the enlightenment. They did not become the dominant views of Chinese philosophy and practice, but they were there. What it made me wonder though is if the West was just more lucky to have latched on to them more so than in being unique in developing them.

    • #13
  14. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    JoelB (View Comment):
    Why did the West figure out what was “impossible to figure out”? Could it have been an effect of the Judeo-Christian religious heritage that the left is so intent on stamping out?

    It certainly is a popular way to think around here that this is the reason. Recently I’ve been listening to a history of China. What struck me is that in their long philosophical tradition they had numerous thinkers that started formulating thoughts very much in line with the western conceptions of humanism and natural law that emerged at the end of the Medieval period and ushered in the Renascence and subsequently the enlightenment. They did not become the dominant views of Chinese philosophy and practice, but they were there. What it made me wonder though is if the West was just more lucky to have latched on to them more so than in being unique in developing them.

    @valiuth

    I am not familiar with Chinese philosophy, or even Western philosophy, but I find it interesting that the two diverged on this issue. The relevant question is how did we get to where we are. There must have been historic events and trends that led to the difference. I think it was more than the roll of the dice.  If you or anyone else has some ideas to share along these lines, I would be glad to read them.

    • #14

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