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The Appeal of Ideology

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1y Jul 12, 2020
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VIDEO ESSAY: The Appeal of Ideology

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Far left ideology is riddled with contradictions. In truth, ideology in general is plagued by contradictions, not just far left ideology. This is so by the very definition of ideology which is a set of beliefs of philosophies which are often held for reasons that are not purely epistemic. Ideology appeals to people precisely for this reason - it obviates the need to think for yourself and to analyze the reality before you, a reality that is often subtle and complex.

Far Left or woke ideology is laden with so many internal contradictions that it is nearly impossible even for someone who wishes to signal their acceptance of it to keep it all straight. Since there is no internal logic to it, it becomes an exercise in memorization in which adherents have to reference spreadsheets to identify which beliefs are acceptable within the far left canon.

Take the far left’s relationship with science. The Left often criticizes the right wing for its supposed rejection of science. The Left now espouses the belief that gender and sex are social constructs not grounded in biology. Of course, any biologist will tell you that gametes are binary, namely egg and sperm. Sex, therefore, is binary as well.

It may be true that gender—the behavioral expression of sex—is far more variable, continuous even. But it is still noting like “a bell curve” as leftists claim. Even if gender is bimodal and fluid, that does negate the 500+ million years of binary sex.

Still, in other cases, the Left insists on rigid scientific and biological explanations. It is not uncommon in the context of abortion debates, for example, to hear leftists protest referring to an unborn fetus as a baby or a child. These terms, they insist, are not scientific at all and we can only refer to a fetus. Baby, they say, is not a scientific term.

This inconsistency, namely playing fast and loose with biology in the case of gender and sex discussions, while demanding rigid biological terminology in the case of abortion, is a pure expression of ideology. Science is held up as the arbiter when it’s convenient and casually dispenses with when it is not.

In all cases, the conception of reality precedes observation and an attempt to understand the phenomenon. A person who is seriously involved in the pursuit of the truth first carefully gathers the facts and then, guided by reason and various cognitive tools, such as Occam's razor, tries to uncover the underlying, more foundational causes that account for the phenomena he observes. Ideology, on the other hand, proceeds by solidifying a set of beliefs and sees no obligation to modify or abandon beliefs that do not seem to coincide with reality.

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Our society and politics appear to be on the edge of a precipice. If we are to avoid violence, the only tools we have at our disposal are dialogue and conversation.


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