The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Monday, November 4, 2013

I Sometimes Wonder...

Do we realize how programmed we are by society? By our cultures?

I realized when I was quite young that school not only gave us an education but molded us into loyal citizens. Or, at least, attempted to do so. That revelation came to me as I looked back on the daily recital of the the Pledge of Allegiance. I was maybe 10 when I first did this... reflect on the pledge, that is. And, of course, that made me wonder about other conditioning regimes we run into throughout our lives and, especially, during our childhoods.

Don't misunderstand, I am not opposed to this conditioning. I think it is probably necessary. And all societies, even the most primitive, engage in it. As we moved from clans to tribes to villages to cities to nations, this conditioning has been a major part of the process. It is, I believe, the source of patriotism, nationalism, and much more. It gives us a commonality, a linkage for the vast majority of members of a society.

The pledge I recited each day was just a tiny part of it. We are socialized by our parents; molded into basic members of society. And then we are turned over to teachers who continue the forging of the raw materials (children) into productive citizens. We learn to conform to the social construct which is a citizen of a society.

It's not a perfect process, of course, what system or process is perfect? Various children fall through the cracks in it. They become criminals and eccentrics (who can be inconsequential or, sometimes, dangerous). But most, the vast majority become useful to society. The work the fields, toil in the factories, cook, clean, lead and follow... do all the things that make up the fabric of a society.

Look around you and at your upbringing. You can find all sorts of ways you are/were conditioned; schooling, peer pressure, stories, legends and myths, heroes and even villains... all have a part in that conditioning. And all, I think, voluntarily; both on the part of the conditioner and the conditioned. It is human nature to want to belong, after all.

For an example, see Hamas Creates it Own Textbooks.


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