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Redalgo
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« on: March 15, 2012, 06:20:06 pm »
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Allo and such everyone,

At the request of Nathan and Yel, who expressed interest in the matter, I want to set aside a bit of time to discuss a conceptual model I have schemed up. Having made several adjustments to an Aristotelian concept of virtue politics in an effort to make it more pertinent to modern politics, the Twelve Colors Model aims to offer laymen a means by which to convert some of their finer attributes of personal character into political principles to guide their development and advocacy of a coherent array of attitudes and ideological perspectives.

The approach in question is a response to the following line of thought:

1. Forms of capital are utilized extensively by individuals in attempts to pursue their interests.
2. Scarcity of resources begets interpersonal disputes, which in turn give rise to social conflict.
3. Social conflict is necessary for settling disputes but also generates forms of human suffering.
4. Managing social conflict is crucial to promoting human happiness and long-term satisfaction.
5. Government provides for us a tool with which to do exactly that, but its use is controversial.
6. Rationality cannot resolve political disputes without underlying priorities of subjective value.
7. But the human condition, and social creation of (perceived) reality are sources of ignorance.
8. Objective moral truths and most facts about reality are assumed - not actually known to us.
9. Politics is basically a game in which players try to alter the behavior of and persuade others.
10. Most of what is "wrong" with politics stems from not understanding the implications of 1-9.

What I propose is government be conceptualized as a person who should habitualize a wise "Golden Mean" of characteristics in keeping with virtue (i.e. a functional excellence which will lead it to the fulfillment of its purpose, which in this case is promoting human happiness) and not vices of deficiency or excess, which would result in the People's dissatisfaction, erosion of government's legitimacy, and a decline in the public's willingness to cooperate with leaders or adhere to laws meant to improve quality of life.

Because morality is relative, it is necessary for government to consult with the People for the sake of deciding which moral virtues on which to fabricate a rational set of political goals and corresponding public policies. Those goals and policies must represent a complete moral constellation, or coherent combination of virtues useful for guiding the formulation of political strategies and management of all facets of social conflict, lest government fail to do all that it can to fulfill its founding purpose. For the sake of this model I offer thirty-two of such constellations, though within any single one of them there are numerous possibilities for different kinds of institutions and policies to be implemented.

A constellation consists of five arbitrarily-selected political virtues to emphasize in ones efforts to make governing prescriptions. One should decide which of the following to champion in politics: vigilance or discipline; compassion or ambition; responsibility or magnificence; modesty or reverence; and gregariousness or assertiveness. Each pair of moral virtues is accompanied by two corresponding vices to be mindful of and - although I leave it to every individual to decide where to draw the line between virtuous moderation and vicious extremity - I recommend both government and the people try to strike balances between the values instead of pursuing some to the point of neglecting others.

The individual's role in this scheme is to project their interpretations of morality onto the government. If it is done by enough people the final outcome of their respective influences ought to represent a gradually shifting equilibrium of traits that, while subject to constant change, at any given moment represents the soul or collective character of society. In the book I am writing, this character personified in the States by the government as an embodiment "Uncle Sam" in an appeal to tradition and national myth. He is without his own conscience and quite obviously does not exist outside of the mind, but remains a useful metaphor to use in my explanation of how we build the character of nations.

For the sake of convenience I have associated each of the primary virtues in question with a color to distinguish it from the others. Knowing ones political colors is important, because if a person does not convert their morals into and rationalize their most fundamental convictions with compatible ideologies I suspect the political views they espouse and agenda they push will not, if implemented, bring about outcomes that will satisfy them on as profound of a level as they otherwise could have. People owe it to themselves to discover and promote the ideas they think will bring about a generally pleasant, morally beautiful society in which to flourish.

At any rate, I am only in a conceptual stage of developing this model and expect many revisions to be made over time. Also, a full explanation of the colors and corresponding ideologies would consume scores of pages and cannot reasonably be provided here so I will be condensing core concepts here to the best of my abilities.



Black Politics:

A "Black" perspective is that which emphasizes the virtue of visionary courage rather than the virtue of temperance. When perverted it gives rise to vices of recklessness or cowardice. Four Black attitudes pertain to the structural facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how government can best represent the public's values. More specifically, Blacks and Whites do not see eye-to-eye on to what extent government should shift from one order to another.

1. Radicalism advocates total, rapid transformation from the established order to another one.
2. Vanguardism proposes that a radical social movement be guided by temperate intellectuals.
3. Curatorism proposes a reactionary restoration movement be led by temperate intellectuals.
4. Reactionism advocates the restoration of a previous social order to replace the one in place.


White Politics:

A "White" perspective is that which emphasizes the virtue of expedient temperance - not the virtue of courage. When perverted it can give rise to vices of cowardice or recklessness. Four White attitudes pertain to the structural facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how government can best represent the public's values. More specifically, Whites and Blacks do not see eye-to-eye on to what extent government should shift from one order to another.

1. Vanguardism proposes that courageous, intellectual folks promote temperate reformation.
2. Progressivism advocates gradual reforms which may evolve the current order into another.
3. Conservatism proposes preservation of the current order but not necessarily all its policies.
4. Curatorism proposes that courageous, intellectual folks champion temperate preservation.


Just one attitude can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colors to identify with and this selection does not represent part of ones moral constellation. It represents a person's political attitude in the specific context of their own society's political culture. After determining which other colors you relate to, compare them to those which would best describe the policies currently enacted in your country to double-check your initial choice in attitude.



Yellow Politics:

A "Yellow" perspective emphasizes the virtue of individual vigilance instead of the virtue of discipline. When perverted it gives rise to vices of arrogance or complacency. There are three Yellow ideologies relating to the structural facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how government can best represent the public's values. More specifically, Yellows and Browns diverge on to what extent the political elite and masses should influence public policy.

1. Libertarianism favors empowerment of the masses via minimizing or abolishing the state.
2. Liberalism favors empowerment of the masses via a government which limits elite power.
3. Communitarianism favors empowerment of both via open state support of popular values.


Brown Politics:

A "Brown" perspective emphasizes the virtue of collective discipline rather than the virtue of vigilance. When perverted it gives rise to vices of complacency or arrogance. There are three Brown ideologies relating to the structural facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how government can best represent the public's values. More specifically, Browns and Yellows diverge on to what extent the political elite and masses should influence public policy.

1. Corporatism favors empowerment of both via state promotion of inter-group collaboration.
2. Authoritarianism favors empowerment of elites via a strong state, and decisive leadership.
3. Totalitarianism favors empowerment of elites via a state with high capacity and autonomy.


One ideology can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colours to identify with. This selection indicates the first of the five sub-components in your moral constellation. Yellow and Brown have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neither of them is inherently worse than the other. Also, just for reference, Communitarianism and Corporatism are the most moderate options provided while Libertarianism and Totalitarianism are most extreme.


« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 06:30:01 pm by Redalgo »Logged

"I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to see realized." ~ Nelson Mandela
Redalgo
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« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2012, 06:21:45 pm »
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Red Politics:

The "Red" perspective emphasizes the virtue of cooperative compassion over the virtue of ambitiousness. When perverted it can give rise to vices of selflessness or greediness. There are three Red ideologies relating to the productive facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how society can best manage resources. More specifically, Reds and Blues do not agree on what is merit and what the purpose of the economy ideally should be.

1. Communism proposes that workers ought to be free to exercise self-determination in life.
2. Socialism proposes a utility economy to optimize the distribution of capital and privileges.
3. Social Democratism proposes that the government intervene to safeguard human dignity.


Blue Politics:

The "Blue" perspective emphasizes the virtue of competitive ambitiousness over the virtue of compassion. When perverted it can give rise to vices of greediness or selflessness. There are three Blue ideologies relating to the productive facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how society can best manage resources. More specifically, Blues and Reds do not agree on what is merit and what the purpose of the economy ideally should be.

1. Neo-mercantilism proposes that the government intervene to guide national development.
2. Capitalism proposes a profit economy to optimize production and incentives for innovation.
3. Voluntaryism proposes markets should be free so folks can trade and use what they want.


One ideology can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colors to identify with. This selection indicates the second of five sub-components in your moral constellation. Red and Blue views have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neither is inherently worse than is the other. Also, just for reference, Social Democratism and Neo-Mercantilism are the most moderate options provided while Communism and Voluntaryism are most extreme.



Green Politics:

The "Green" perspective emphasizes the virtue of restrictive responsibility over the virtue of magnificence. When perverted it can give rise to vices of frugality or indulgence. There are three Green ideologies relating to the productive facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how society can best manage resources. More specifically, Greens and Cyans do not agree on how to sustainably, morally develop resources with future generations in mind.

1. Ecologism advocates harmonization of interests betwixt human beings and non-human life.
2. Personism advocates treatment of life forms in accordance to their degree of "personhood."
3. Environmentalism advocates careful stewardship of nature to save it from being destroyed.


Cyan Politics:

The "Cyan" perspective emphasizes the virtue of expansive magnificence over the virtue of responsibility. When perverted it can give rise to vices of indulgence or frugality. There are three Cyan ideologies relating to the productive facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on how society can best manage resources. More specifically, Cyans and Greens do not agree on how to sustainably, morally develop resources with future generations in mind.

1. Conservationism advocates maintenance of nature so human needs will continue to be met.
2. Cornucopianism advocates consumption and continuous exploration for additional resources.
3. Technocentrism advocates using technologies to help humanity adapt to and exploit nature.


One ideology can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colors to identify with. This selection indicates the third of five sub-components in your moral constellation. Green and Cyan views have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neither is inherently worse than is the other. Also, just for reference, Environmentalism and Conservationism are the most moderate options provided while Ecologism and Technocentrism are most extreme.



Pink Politics:

The "Pink" perspective emphasizes the virtue of inclusive modesty over that of reverence. When perverted it can give rise to vices of sacrilege or intolerance. There are three Pink ideologies relating to the normative facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on which cultures and social groups should prosper. More specifically, the Pinks and Purples do not agree on how they should respond to diversity within society.

1. Multiculturalism posits we ought to celebrate our differences and accommodate minorities.
2. Pluralism posits we should embrace diversity, but not necessarily accommodate minorities.
3. Amalgamism posits we should adopt a "melting pot" culture of merging groups and norms.


Purple Politics:

The "Purple" perspective emphasizes the virtue of exclusive reverence over that of modesty. When perverted, it can give rise to vices of intolerance or sacrilege. There are three Purple ideologies relating to the normative facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on which cultures and social groups should prosper. More specifically, the Purples and Pinks do not agree on how they should respond to diversity within society.

1. Ethnocentrism posits we ought to tolerate minorities but also favor traditional ways of life.
2. Nationalism posits we should adopt the ways of, take pride in, and be loyal to our people.
3. Imperialism posits we should propagate our customs and subdue folk who do not conform.


One ideology can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colors to identify with. This selection indicates the fourth of five sub-components in your moral constellation. Pink and Purple views have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neither is inherently worse than the other. Also, just for reference, Amalgamism and Ethnocentrism are the most moderate options provided while Multiculturalism and Imperialism are the most extreme.



Orange Politics:

The "Orange" perspective emphasizes the virtue of extroverted gregariousness over that of assertiveness. When perverted it can give rise to vices of timidity or aggressiveness. Three Orange ideologies are related to the normative facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on which cultures and social groups should prosper. More specifically, the Oranges and Grays do not agree on what to prioritize in international relations.

1. Cosmopolitanism calls for unification of people of all nations under a common government.
2. Humanitarianism calls for folks to peacefully coexist and help those who are most in need.
3. Internationalism calls for stability, peace, and alliances between nations with similar aims.


Gray Politics:

The "Gray" perspective emphasizes the virtue of introverted assertiveness over the virtue of gregariousness. When perverted, it can give rise to vices of aggressiveness or timidity. There are three Gray ideologies relating to the normative facet of social conflict, i.e. disagreements we have on which cultures and social groups should prosper. More specifically, the Grays and Oranges do not agree on what to prioritize in international relations

1. Neo-realism calls for pursuing self-interest while avoiding consideration of morality abroad.
2. Hegemonism calls for developing supremacy of soft and/or hard power within ones region.
3. Colonialism calls for wielding influence to acquire control of assets outside of ones country.


One ideology can be selected from one of the two before-mentioned colors to identify with. This selection indicates the last of five sub-components in your moral constellation. Orange and Gray views have their own strengths and weaknesses. Neither is inherently worse than the other. Also, just for reference, Internationalism and Neo-realism are the most moderate options provided while Cosmopolitanism and Colonialism are the most extreme.



Mind you, each of the colors and corresponding ideologies merit at the least a few thousand words of elaboration and it is worth noting that I have taken the liberty of redefining a few ideologies, but for now it is merely a work in progress. The point of mentioning this is mostly to establish that my thinking is not quite so simplistic. There are a lot of caveats and far richer explanations of how some of the pieces have been fit together. It is also not unknown for me to tinker with a couple of the virtues featured, or change one of the ideologies altogether (it has even crossed my mind to write about another eight moral virtues which are without color because they seem generally better suited to improving the quality of political campaigns and debates).

As it stands, the before-mentioned colors (black and black excluded) can be arranged in 32 ways. Many have temporary names affixed to them just to help me keep track of which sets are which, and in fact were presumptuously reverse-evaluated via their positions and I have since changed the model just enough that I doubt more than half or so of these are accurate. Feel free to check it out though either way. The first letter is always Y(ellow) or B(rown), the second R(ed) or B(lue), the third G(reen) or C(yan), the fourth Pi(nk) or Pu(rple), and the last O(range) or (G)ray. Bear in mind that this leaves room for a lot of diversity in each of the moral constellations. The number of potential ideological combinations is significantly higher.

1. YRGPiO: Mandelist
2. YRGPiG: Lulist
3. YRGPuO: Gandhist
4. YRGPuG: ?
5. YRCPiO: Nehruist
6. YRCPiG: Olavist
7. YRCPuO: Chávist
8. YRCPuG: Gurionist
9. YBGPiO: Trudeauist
10. YBGPiG: Goldwaterist
11. YBGPuO: Kohlist
12. YBGPuG: Sharifist
13. YBCPiO: Azikiwist
14. YBCPiG: Aquinoist
15. YBCPuO: Sharanskyist
16. YBCPuG: Yoshidist
17. BRGPiO: Bogdanovist
18. BRGPiG: Kirchnerist
19. BRGPuO: Wojtyłist
20. BRGPuG: Tsirananist
21. BRCPiO: Trotskyist
22. BRCPiG: Attleeist
23. BRCPuO: Sukarnist
24. BRCPuG: Maoist
25. BBGPiO: Rooseveltianist
26. BBGPiG: Johnsonianist
27. BBGPuO: ?
28. BBGPuG: Thatcherist
29. BBCPiO: ?
30. BBCPiG: Kagamist
31. BBCPuO: Adenauerist
32. BBCPuG: Dengist

There are too many documents here for me to comb through them all for details on everything pertinent to the model but I would gladly answer questions, elaborate on points of interest, and try to respond intelligibly to any ideas or points of criticism folks have. This whole thing is only a portion of a larger project plucked out for examination and I have not gotten most of the material in my head down on paper yet so this is still a pretty good time for me to get a bit of feedback and make adjustments before sinking too many hundreds of hours into it all. xD
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 06:24:15 pm by Redalgo »Logged

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« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2012, 08:14:04 pm »
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You, sir, have blown me away.  When you publish the book can I get a signed copy?

Now for some constructive criticism.  It may be that my politics are not defined well enough to place definitively in this schema, but I feel like a person can hold multiple ideological stances within each color group.  For example, after reading the Red/Blue section, I felt like the government should both "intervene to safeguard human dignity" and "intervene to guide national development."  The first of those is Social Democratism, Red 3, while the second is Neo-mercantilism, Blue 1.  Another thing that jumped out to me in the Red/Blue section was the identifycation of "selflessness" as a vice.  Perhaps it's just my cultural bias, but "selflessness" seems like a virtue in every use of the word.

I had the same problem in the Green/Cyan group.  We should, in my opinion, protect nature from destruction, while at the same time developing technologies to more efficiently exploit nature.  Perhaps those are oposing viewpoints, as Environmentalism and Technocentrism are not near each other on the schema, but they make sense together to me.  A note on that grouping, how does "Miser/Myserly/Myserlyness" sound instead of Frugality?  Because frugality does not sound like a convincing vice to me.

As to your eight additional ethics related specifically to the political sphere, I suggest saving them for another work.  The "Twelve Colors of Virtue" is universal.  I presume (perhaps I'm wrong) that your eight political ethics are composed with western democracy in mind.  Perhaps an idea for a sequel?

I'm going to mull over the options for a while longer before picking my colors.
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« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2012, 04:39:27 pm »
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If I finish the book at some point I would hope to post it online as a free download provided I have enough work by that point to be doing alright financially. I will need to wait and see how a lot of things turn out before deciding whether this is worth trying to get into print one way or another.


...after reading the Red/Blue section, I felt like the government should both "intervene to safeguard human dignity" and "intervene to guide national development."  The first of those is Social Democratism, Red 3, while the second is Neo-mercantilism, Blue 1.

I think part of the problem is that in a threaded context I'm unable to fully elaborate about what kind of positions fall under the umbrellas of which of the ideologies. I, too, find that most of my stances draw upon ideas from multiple ideologies. The catch is that one usually seems to stick out as being a stronger match than the others. What I would say about that, in other words, is these political categories are not meant to sever a person off from outside influences so much as better familiarize them with what kinds of ideas may warrant more investigation on their part above and beyond what I am able to offer them.

For instance, in regards to productive conflict, I would say a social democrat is certainly allowed to promote state intervention in the economy to help guide national development - it is just that their top priorities in this area of public policy are probably going to be centered upon a strong, universalized welfare regime, promoting a healthy balance between work and leisure, redistributing resources to provide for the basic needs of the citizenry, and generally trying to make the rules of competition in markets more "fair," even if it sometimes means a bit of loss to overall economic performance. The Red/Blue difference is fundamentally about whether it should be compassion or ambition that predominately influences the functions of our economy. The former may be tempted to focus on the process of how business is done, wanting it to be nicer and not hurt folks, while the latter may look more at the end outcomes and argue growth eventually helps everyone or, to use a platitude, rising tides lift all boats.

So for the neo-mercantilist, using regulations and some kind of social safety net is perfectly alright too (as it is in the ideology of capitalism), but in this case the government is going to work more so with businesses to help them thrive and/or nudge them toward achieving strategic economic goals than to place notions of "social justice" or more equality between the classes among their highest priorities. Not so concerned with promoting market forces and privatization as capitalists, the neo-mercantilist may favor forms of protectionism, subsidies for certain kinds of businesses within their country, extensive usage of tax incentives to encourage desirable behaviors in the private sector, seek to use forms of "fair trade" as a method to protect the jobs and livelihoods of workers in their own country, or desire greater self-reliance - e.g. "bring industrial jobs back to the United States" or "lower our dependency on foreign oil." Their approach is mixed but fundamentally pro-growth and willing to distort markets if it seems likely to help us prosper.

At least within the model, I recommend erring Blue if your main motive on matters of economic policy pertains to promoting the people's overall prosperity, or erring Red if you consider it to be more important to (perhaps unconditionally?) lend a hand to the disadvantaged. Mind you, picking a "side" does not mean one is devoid of the values and interests espoused by their counterparts. One of the greatest strengths of a moderate person can be their ablity to see and appreciate the considerations everyone, regardless of ideology, brings to the table. It is also one reason why I think White and Black political attitudes are important to understanding how a person tries to develop ideas and later convert them into realities.


I had the same problem in the Green/Cyan group.  We should, in my opinion, protect nature from destruction, while at the same time developing technologies to more efficiently exploit nature.  Perhaps those are oposing viewpoints, as Environmentalism and Technocentrism are not near each other on the schema, but they make sense together to me.

As for the Green/Cyan pairing in productive conflict, elaboration is once again necessary. For the environmentalist the wishes of humanity are subjugated somewhat in favor of advancing the interests of nature as a whole whereas the technocentrist will see technical advances as a way for humanity to dominate the environment, reshape it to fit their fancy, or continue to damage or alter the environment without needing to worry about the consequences putting our survival as a species in jeopardy - i.e. the solution is not to alter our behavior so much as to take human evolution into our own hands, building tools and applying techniques that will ensure we survive and the carrying capacity of the Earth will be (at least temporarily) raised.

The primary difference is the Green sees nature as something to nurture, protect, and only exploit to a modest extent to keep ourselves alive and healthy. Efficiency is important, and using new technology may be a great way to help us respect nature without needing to reduce our species' population by billions and return to low-impact, pre-industrial lifestyles. The Cyan looks at nature as more of a resource people are entitled to use as they please - one that we simply have to be careful not to exhaust. At least in this model, the Cyan bloke also tends to be more likely to set aside resources to create grand, beautiful, and luxurious things even if they are not always technically necessary to satisfying our most basic needs.

I struggle on this particular pairing somewhat as well, at least in part because I have a soft spot in me for testaments of culture such as monuments, museums, concerts, etc., and also happen to think some luxuries are fine since supplies of resources seem almost inexhaustible provided we pace ourselves well enough. At least for me though, what makes the Green side attractive is a nagging suspicion it is better to limit consumption and incrementally dial down the economy several notches to chug along at a safer, more sustainable pace than to plow on ahead at full speed in hopes that technology will later dispel or at least mitigate the dangers posed to humanity by unsustainable economic practices. Once again though, there are a lot of ways to go about this. Cyans can also work to protect the environment; it is just that in major conflicts of interest they more often than not do what seems best for economic growth.


Another thing that jumped out to me in the Red/Blue section was the identifycation of "selflessness" as a vice.  Perhaps it's just my cultural bias, but "selflessness" seems like a virtue in every use of the word.

I initially looked at it that way too but eventually settled on a rationale that if a person does too much to help others, she or he runs the risk of neglecting their own needs and by doing so both undercuts their own quality of life and future capacity to continue being charitable. Perhaps at some point I should try to replace it with a word with a less positive connotation. What makes a trait vicious is its extremity; in the Red/Blue context it is good to be ambitious and compassionate but at some point selflessness becomes too compassionate and greed becomes too ambitious for one to fruitfully improve both their own lives and those of folks around them. What do you think?


A note on that grouping, how does "Miser/Myserly/Myserlyness" sound instead of Frugality?  Because frugality does not sound like a convincing vice to me.

I strongly support this suggestion and will incorporate it into the model unless there are any objections. Miserliness implies a lack of generosity with money, which I initially thought might offer too strong a semblance to greediness in the Red/Blue pairing, but then again seems to provide a stronger contrast with magnificence. Frugality was briefly considered as a potential virtue for Green Politics because responsibility strikes me as a bit too similar to discipline. One way or another though I ought to go back at some point to consider some alternative words.


As to your eight additional ethics related specifically to the political sphere, I suggest saving them for another work.  The "Twelve Colors of Virtue" is universal.  I presume (perhaps I'm wrong) that your eight political ethics are composed with western democracy in mind.  Perhaps an idea for a sequel?

Yes and no, really.

The heavy influence of Aristotle weaves Western biases into the model but at the same time I intend for the virtues to be fully compatible with democratic, aristocratic, or monarchical systems. A section of the book discusses not the desirability of Western-styled democracy so much as it attacks ochlocratic, oligarchical, and tyrannical forms of government as corrupt and vicious. My bias is primarily that in favor of constitutionalism and the republic.

A reexamination of the colorless virtues will be necessary at least in part because at least a few of them are incompatible with the political realities of developing countries. One of the best examples coming to mind is a discussion I had many months ago with a friend who lives in Lebanon. He pointed out that honesty or transparency in the politics of his country, and an unwillingness to manipulate people to ones own ends would at best make a person unable to thrive, competitively, or at worst lead to being killed by extremists. I would say the colorless virtues are ill-suited for places where political violence and forms of patrimonialism are socially acceptable since they are more idealistic and anti-corruption than their colored counterparts.

For now I intend to include all twenty virtues in the book but may as a way of compensating set aside some space for discussing the importance of adapting ideas to ones own political culture rather than trying to use the prescriptions as a "one size fits all" recommendation for all countries. Either way, I encourage people to adapt my ideas and reject others at their own discretion. No matter how thoroughly I think things through I will sometimes be far off mark. :]
« Last Edit: March 16, 2012, 05:10:06 pm by Redalgo »Logged

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« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2012, 07:28:35 pm »
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-elaboration-
Thanks, that clears it up for me.  I think I will go with Neo-Mercantilism and Environmentalism.

I initially looked at it that way too but eventually settled on a rationale that if a person does too much to help others, she or he runs the risk of neglecting their own needs and by doing so both undercuts their own quality of life and future capacity to continue being charitable. Perhaps at some point I should try to replace it with a word with a less positive connotation. What makes a trait vicious is its extremity; in the Red/Blue context it is good to be ambitious and compassionate but at some point selflessness becomes too compassionate and greed becomes too ambitious for one to fruitfully improve both their own lives and those of folks around them. What do you think?
I understand what you mean, though I agree that a word with a less positive connotation might be better.  The key is that your audience understands what you are saying.  Perhaps "Fecklessness" (I don't know if that's a word; the root is "feckless" or not being careful with how you spend or give your money) could work as a substitute for "Selflessness"?

Yes and no, really.

The heavy influence of Aristotle weaves Western biases into the model but at the same time I intend for the virtues to be fully compatible with democratic, aristocratic, or monarchical systems. A section of the book discusses not the desirability of Western-styled democracy so much as it attacks ochlocratic, oligarchical, and tyrannical forms of government as corrupt and vicious. My bias is primarily that in favor of constitutionalism and the republic.

A reexamination of the colorless virtues will be necessary at least in part because at least a few of them are incompatible with the political realities of developing countries. One of the best examples coming to mind is a discussion I had many months ago with a friend who lives in Lebanon. He pointed out that honesty or transparency in the politics of his country, and an unwillingness to manipulate people to ones own ends would at best make a person unable to thrive, competitively, or at worst lead to being killed by extremists. I would say the colorless virtues are ill-suited for places where political violence and forms of patrimonialism are socially acceptable since they are more idealistic and anti-corruption than their colored counterparts.

For now I intend to include all twenty virtues in the book but may as a way of compensating set aside some space for discussing the importance of adapting ideas to ones own political culture rather than trying to use the prescriptions as a "one size fits all" recommendation for all countries. Either way, I encourage people to adapt my ideas and reject others at their own discretion. No matter how thoroughly I think things through I will sometimes be far off mark. :]
I see.  Another relevant anecdote is a discussion I had with a guy from Croatia.  We were talking about civil service, and he basically said that in Croatia it is culturally unacceptable to not engage in nepotism.  The mid-level bureaucrat who passes over a family member in favor of a qualified applicant is shunned by his family and looked down upon by everyone else, even the more qualified applicant would be a little weirded out.  It just goes to show how different cultures treat politics so very differently.


Here is what I cam up with for my colors.
White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Liberalism
Blue: Neo-Mercantilism
Green: Environmentalism
Pink: Multiculturalism
Orange: Internationalism

That combinations means I am "9. YBGPiO: Trudeauist".  May I ask why the Black-White category was excluded from the schema?

One last little comment; you might want to replace "vanguardism" and "curatorism" with two other terms in the White category, since you already used them in the black.  I don't have any good suggestions though Sad
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« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2012, 08:33:23 pm »
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According to your metric, I am a:

White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Communitarianism (varies from communitarianism to even totalitarianism at times)
Red: Social Democratism
Cyan: Technocentrism, though all at various times with occassional excursions all the way to environmentalism
Pink: Amalgamism
Orange: Humanitarianism (with cosmopolitanist leanings at times)

I'm a Nehruist primarily, and sometimes a Trotskyist, Mandelist, or a Rooseveltianist depending on the variations I listed above.
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« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2012, 11:52:46 pm »
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White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Between liberalism and communitarianism, usually
Red: Socialism, occasionally wavering towards communism  or social democratism, but definitively always red
Green: Environmentalism, though with sympathies for conservationism on the other side and occasional forays all the way to ecologism
Pink: Somewhere in pink or very soft purple, but I'm uncomfortable aligning myself with the descriptions of most of the subcategories
Orange: Humanitarinism.

YRGPiO

Mandelist. Is this Ernest Mandel or somebody else?  If I indulge my occasional purplish flashes I become YRGPuO, a Gandhist. I can, occasionally, make accidental right turns into mildly brown territory, in which case I become a Bogdanovist or a Wojtyłist.
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« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2012, 01:45:52 am »
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I understand what you mean, though I agree that a word with a less positive connotation might be better.  The key is that your audience understands what you are saying.  Perhaps "Fecklessness" (I don't know if that's a word; the root is "feckless" or not being careful with how you spend or give your money) could work as a substitute for "Selflessness"?

I'm not sure feckless would lend quite the right connotation but yeah... one way or another I'll definitely need to find something to swap out selflessness for.


I see.  Another relevant anecdote is a discussion I had with a guy from Croatia.  We were talking about civil service, and he basically said that in Croatia it is culturally unacceptable to not engage in nepotism.  The mid-level bureaucrat who passes over a family member in favor of a qualified applicant is shunned by his family and looked down upon by everyone else, even the more qualified applicant would be a little weirded out.  It just goes to show how different cultures treat politics so very differently.

Yeah, exactly!


Here is what I cam up with for my colors.
White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Liberalism
Blue: Neo-Mercantilism
Green: Environmentalism
Pink: Multiculturalism
Orange: Internationalism

That combinations means I am "9. YBGPiO: Trudeauist".

Some other folks I've found to fit into this constellation include: Paul Wellstone, Wangari Maathai, Robert Hawke, Václav Havel, and David Lange. It seems like a position common among modern liberals in North America and Third Way-leaning labourites elsewhere but there is much to be done before I can try to accurately connect dots with these things.


May I ask why the Black-White category was excluded from the schema?

One last little comment; you might want to replace "vanguardism" and "curatorism" with two other terms in the White category, since you already used them in the black.  I don't have any good suggestions though Sad

Part of it I suppose is because the Black/White pairing is less developed at this point than the others, conceptually. Traditionally there have only been four political attitudes: radical, liberal, conservative, and reactionary. I felt this was inadequate and wanted to add two more so as to offer something in-between radical and liberal on the left and conservative and reactionary on the right. Trouble is, in my model the vanguards and curators cannot neatly be sorted into only Black Politics or White Politics... and calling them Gray won't work because that is already taken up in the Orange/Gray pairing. Bringing up the total number of attitudes to eight would needlessly complicate things but one way or another something needs to give. Hopefully it is something I will make some headway with later on. Also, although I think the word "curator" provides a good description for the type of attitude I am trying to describe, it really makes an awful "ism" rolling off the tongue. omgz :<

Aside from that, they are not part of the moral constellations because they are attitudes, not ideologies. Nonetheless, I am presently arguing with myself right over whether to incorporate them into the constellations but am somehow losing. I will ruminate about the idea for awhile and see - maybe it would be a good idea after all.


According to your metric, I am a:

White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Communitarianism (varies from communitarianism to even totalitarianism at times)
Red: Social Democratism
Cyan: Technocentrism, though all at various times with occassional excursions all the way to environmentalism
Pink: Amalgamism
Orange: Humanitarianism (with cosmopolitanist leanings at times)

I'm a Nehruist primarily, and sometimes a Trotskyist, Mandelist, or a Rooseveltianist depending on the variations I listed above.

My initial gut reaction looking at this is your selections at least partially align with the European notion of Christian Democracy. Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Wei Jingsheng, Andrei Sakharov, Joseph Chifley, and Karl Branting are included in the Nehruist constellation.

Yet looking at this result opened my eyes to a dilemma regarding the ideological combinations and I am starting to think narrowing it down to thirty-two for the sake of simplicity is painting with so broad of a brush that the results, at least so far as they refer to a name, may border on being meaningless. At some point when I have a lot of spare time on my hands I am probably going to need to expand the number of moral constellations so that they are based on specific ideological selections rather than the colors in which they fit. Or I can stick with the lower constellation count and scheme up a new way of naming them that won't compare the readers with political figures who differ with their political views in many substantial respects.

Either way, I am glad this was revealed to me. I was probably overestimating the extent to which people can be neatly lumped into categories with similarly-minded political role models.


White: Vanguardism
Yellow: Between liberalism and communitarianism, usually
Red: Socialism, occasionally wavering towards communism  or social democratism, but definitively always red
Green: Environmentalism, though with sympathies for conservationism on the other side and occasional forays all the way to ecologism
Pink: Somewhere in pink or very soft purple, but I'm uncomfortable aligning myself with the descriptions of most of the subcategories
Orange: Humanitarinism.

YRGPiO

Mandelist. Is this Ernest Mandel or somebody else?  If I indulge my occasional purplish flashes I become YRGPuO, a Gandhist. I can, occasionally, make accidental right turns into mildly brown territory, in which case I become a Bogdanovist or a Wojtyłist.

On the Mandelist side of things the grouping contains the likes of Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, Shirin Ebadi, Tony Blair, Aung San Suu Kyi, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, Juan Morales, Eleanor Roosevelt, Albert Einstein, and Noam Chomsky. The Bogdanovist constellation has Alyaksandr Malinovsky and Julius Nyerere whereas its Wojtyłist counterpart includes Pope John Paul II and, maybe, Fidel Castro. Two examples of folks in the Gandhist grouping may be Mohandas Gandhi and Kevin Rudd. I have not checked out enough political figures to get more moderate names into the mix but hopefully with time tweaking some things will help me ensure the ideologies become less difficult to select and the examples of people referenced as related to each constellation more accurately representative of the reader. Hmm... oh well though. I suppose that's to be expected from a work in progress!
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« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2012, 02:22:18 am »
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Interesting that JP2 and Castro end up in the same constellation. I can actually see it--they often had a better rapport than one might have expected given what their positions ostensibly were.
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His idea of freedom is - it is a bad thing and should be stopped at all costs.

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« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2012, 03:37:12 am »
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Black: Vanguardism
Yellow: Liberalism
Red: Socialism (socialist aims, social democratic policies)
Green: Environmentalism
Pink: Permissive Amalgamism (something between a blend of multiculturalism and amalgamism)
Orange: Internationalism

This is brilliant, Aristotle himself would surely approve of this effort.

Pierre Trudeau maybe?
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« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2012, 05:58:21 am »
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Wow, this is pretty impressive indeed. I'm not entirely sure I'd categorize ideologies the way you do, but your classification makes sense and is extremely comprehensive. Congratulations !

Let's see what I get :
- White (vanguardism)
- Yellow (liberalism)
- Red (social-democracy)
- Cyan (conservationism)
- Pink (amalgamism)
- Orange (cosmopolitanism)

YRCPiO, that makes me a Nehruist apparently.

The distinction between Green and Cyan was hard too. I support unlimited technological progress, but in a way which preserves nature in order not to harm future generations (I don't care about nature per se).
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« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2012, 12:03:02 pm »
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Interesting that JP2 and Castro end up in the same constellation. I can actually see it--they often had a better rapport than one might have expected given what their positions ostensibly were.

I was initially quite surprised, but it seems they serve as a reminder that people can reach sets of conclusions either by secular or religious means. Despite his advocacy of democracy abroad, JP2 had authoritarian tendencies in his leadership of the Church and both he and Castro are / were not very permissive on a number of normative issues. In hindsight, both might belong on the Cyan side of things (a few weeks back revisions to the problematic Green/Cyan pairing led to conservationism changing from the former to latter side) but it is quite interesting I think.


Pierre Trudeau maybe?

Trudeau was tricky for me to place, and it is quite possible that I was incorrect in how I opted to judge him. He started out as a socialist but in his career struck me as becoming more of a neo-mercantilist in practice with some social democratic tendencies. Given how cursory most of my reviews of public figures have been, however, I have little faith in the accuracy of their present associations to the various constellations.


The distinction between Green and Cyan was hard too. I support unlimited technological progress, but in a way which preserves nature in order not to harm future generations (I don't care about nature per se).

This is definitely a recurring theme here. I am not yet sure whether it is because I failed to explain each of the six ideologies in question thoroughly enough, because the Green and Cyan pairing as it stands fundamentally fails to offer a clear juxtaposition of perspectives, both, or something else I've yet to pick up on. This really demands more consideration on my part. *nods*
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« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2012, 01:20:29 pm »
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What on earth?

Ah, I see. I think this may be a GUT, or perhaps a TOE. Hahahaha.

Well then... I'm greatly tempted to sneer a little bit, before moving on to dismiss this wishy-washy nonsense as just that, and to leave things there.

Alternatively I could amuse myself for hours at a time in this thread. Hmm...
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« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2012, 02:33:26 pm »
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Well then... I'm greatly tempted to sneer a little bit, before moving on to dismiss this wishy-washy nonsense as just that, and to leave things there.

Alternatively I could amuse myself for hours at a time in this thread. Hmm...

It would be more constructive if you would elaborate a bit. It is not my intent to conceptualize a rationally airtight understanding of politics so much as to afford people who are not profoundly immersed in politics a place to begin in deciding what views they are best off fabricating and, if they do not already have a solid grasp of it, what makes those views defensible. I am used to most folks I meet with strong political opinions having a smug, if not condescending attitude that their rivals are delusional, disingenuous, and/or being irrational relative to oneself and like-minded people. It promotes ignorance and has a toxic impact on the quality of discourse.

I am open to making major revisions and giving serious thought to any arguments provided against the core assumptions being made here or ideas being pitched. My interests include sidesteping the absurd notion that utilitarianism alone can reveal to us a single, objective set of public policies that will reliably deliver "maximum social gain" for the public, that folks have a particular list of duties to uphold that can be objectively discerned, some political ideas are inherently superior to others unless a clear set of goals has been agreed upon, or state can function in practice without any creative element of art interwoven with political science, public management, etc.

It would be nice to create a tool of sorts here that folks could pick up for use in some contexts and then set aside in others given its many flaws and limitations. Such is the nature of most conceptual models utilized in the field of political science. The biggest difference is I am young, lack the resources to do years of empirical research before trying to give any sort of pitch on this topic, and am approaching this casually as a hobby without claiming to have authoritative standing on the issue. Is this all just bullsh**t? Are some of the initial assumptions completely false? Are there any aspects of this that make sense? Would it work much better if a few parts of it were stripped away? At least give me something worthwhile to read here or discuss, because for now I have no clue whether you are right or your post is something to completely shrug off as meaningless and inconsiderate. xD
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« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2012, 12:31:47 pm »
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White: Conservatism (Strongly against trying to fix things that "ain't broke" and looking back to solutions that have worked in the past)

Yellow: Communitarianism (I believe it's important for the state to have a role of influence in the individual's life, but not necessarily an omnipresent one--promoting national ideals via soft power should make sure that both groups are on the same page)

Blue: Capitalism (This is the only way innovation can happen, and it makes sense that this value would help inspire my technocentrism)

Cyan: Technocentrism (Though capitalism, we can find ways to exploit natural resources much more efficiently--moreover, Wal-Mart doesn't have to be part of our environmental problems, but can instead help drive the necessary solutions)

Pink: Amalgamism (I'm all for immigration, but I think it's important that a united country has a shared identity--Canada's cultural mosaic experiment, to me, has failed... it's a very splintered society)

Orange: Internationalism (This one was tough--For the most part, it's important to maintain peace and stability alongside nations that share similar values... even though, secondarily, staying on top via soft/hard power is never a bad thing)

So, I guess I'm YBCPiO.
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