Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Why Corporations Go Left

Because you do, and you are a wishful thinking idiot!

There is a very smart article explaining why corporations are siding with the tranny side in the bathroom controversy. Read it here. In a nutshell, the author says it is because corporations promote a globalizing ethic based on consumer choice, away from one with region-based values. You will have to read the article more carefully than I did to make sure I have interpreted it correctly.

I just want to offer a few thoughts on this phenomenon that interests me.

My take is this, and perhaps it operates as the broader umbrella in which that author's (Turley's) observations fit.

It is easier to say yes than no in the modern world.

No requires an objective claim to value.

Yes simply requires any argument to relativize a traditional claim.

It is far more difficult to say why a thing is objectively morally good or bad because one has to then lay out a coherent worldview, one that is strong enough to overcome any relativizing arguments.

Yes simply requires finding one case of a short-term unpleasant outcome.

For example, to argue that homosexuality is wrong one needs to define the purpose of sex, love, and marriage. To argue that it is good you need only point to one apparent case of love between homosexuals.

This is why we have gone from approving of aesthetically hygienic presentations of same-sex relationships by Hollywood, to where we are now with carefully manicured presentations of transgenderism (i.e. Bruce Jenner), to--soon--carefully manicured presentations of polygamy and pederasty.

But surely I exaggerate, say you.

Let me respond this way: we all know it was outlandish in 1980 to assume that in 2015 transgenderism would be treated as a normal expression of healthy sexuality. What argument was able to stem the tide over those 35 years? Answer: obviously none. So what argument will be offered to suggest that polygamy and pederasty are objectively wrong? None. All that is required are a few presentations of clinically hygienic polygamists and pederasts, couples that are wealthy, attractive, apparently happy and evidently in love. Picture a young boy like Justin Bieber when he was 12 and a thin, cool, twenty-five year old. You are now sold on pedophilia.

But why do we tend to find metaphysical arguments so vexing, rather than signs of wisdom, the Greeks, the Medievals and Early Moderns did?

Another way to ask this is why do we equate happiness with freedom of choice unbridled by custom rather than being a part of a culture or world view that has stood the test of time ('local customs,' in Turley's language)?

To answer this we need to say something about the every day life of modern people that cannot be said about the Greeks, Medieval and the Early Moderns. The answer is rather simple: to make money we do not need to be a part of a closely-knit culture, as they did. Imagine trying to run a business in the pre-industrialized world while publicly rejecting its accepted moral norms. Then you needed your neighbour to help you do everything. Today you do not. Take the example of the cake-baker. If a company does not want to bake a cake for a gay wedding, by market forces alone (baring activism) it would hurt perhaps 1% of their bottom-line. Imagine the same in a Medieval village. If you denied one of the central tenets of their world view you would simply not survive, literally. No one would help you take in your crops, sew the field, buy your product, inseminate your livestock with theirs, etc. I am reminded of a problem in Augustine's time when the dominant Donatist sect would not let Catholics use their ovens to bake their bread. Each village had one public oven for this.

What moral views stand up in a trans-global marketplace? The values of yes. The values that are easy to comprehend and that reflect a simple sense-based kind of pleasure.

See, black people are nice, not scary! And all gays are happy and clean!
Corporations want to sell things. They know people are not prepared to give their products too much thought. Why do people choose Apple over PC, Japanese cars over American, etc., because they have really looked into it? Of course not. I hardly do more than glance at the insurance policies connected with my cars and mortgage. I do not know what the best 32 inch TV is. I could not tell you the difference between a plasma and an HD TV. I do not know what kind of toothpaste I should be buying for my family. But, if the corporation tells me that I am capable of bringing about my own happiness and wealth, I like to hear that. I do not want to hear that eating Subway subs does nevertheless require strenuous exercise if I am to loose the 30 lbs I want to loose.

With their advertisements the Bank of Montreal or whomever tells me that happiness and wealth is possible to everyone: black people, Chinese people, gay people. If it is within their grasp, then surely it is within my grasp. Target tells me that transgendered people are good, happy and healthy, so I don't have to focus on negative ideas, so I will continue to believe that happiness is within my reach, and it includes buying the things that Target sells.

But if you start to bog me down with metaphysical concepts than I loose my conviction that happiness is possible to me by means of my simple choices. Take the problem with Mexican immigration. If you tell me that the government can solve their poverty than I don't have to think about what I have to do about it. Of course, this is false, because the American debt is becoming unmanageable, and therefore the government should be spending less not more. But is an unpleasant solution because it involves me admitting to myself that my material good is more important to me than that of Mexicans. Therefore I have to believe that the 1% have enough money to pay for anyone who comes across the border without it effecting me at all.  How logically sound is that when I don't know how much spare money the 1% have and how many immigrants we are talking about? But I been accustomed to thinking that all solutions are possible and easy, and so why wouldn't this one be more of the same? It couldn't actually be the transgendered people are actually psychologically troubled, because that would require a difficult solution.

There is an amusing clip of Ezra Levant attending a global warming protest. See it here. It becomes quickly evident that the people there think the solution to global warming involves no sacrifice on their own behalf.

Therefore, if Target has to choose between bogging their customers down with subtle philosophical musings about the meaning of sexuality or the idea that there are no bad (sick) kinds of people, they will choose the more pleasant-sounding and easier side.

Choice = happiness. You can choose the kind of clothes you want here at Target just like you can choose your gender. If we show you enough pictures of apparently happy people you will not get bummed out and so continue to live on the superficial level of the consumer.


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