Wednesday 7 January 2015

Todays' events in Paris: a response re absolutism and persecution

There is a kind of absolutist radical politics that seeks to have the final showdown with the enemy. In this scenario, anything which brings about this final showdown is of itself good. It follows from this that nothing needs to be built or organised much beyond the cell or group you happen to be in. It follows from this that a major confrontation with people utterly opposed to everything you stand for is better than confrontations with people who would rather talk to you or negotiate with you. So when these 'true' enemies start implementing high security measures and military clampdowns this is a 'success'.

Meanwhile, the absolutist radical group will grow and develop in an environment in which the group can claim that co-nationalists or co-religionists are being killed, massacred or annihilated. At one level this need only be a matter of 'perceived to be massacred etc' but this can be stated with more objectivity than that. In a situation in which there is persecution over many years, there will often be millenarian, 'last days' type movements. These enable members (nearly always men) to appear to renounce common or ordinary existence and find purity in action - no matter the consequences in the here and now. That's because the adherents 'know' that there is a better life beyond. However, all this way of thinking needs persecution in order to prove itself. There's a symbiosis here: the absolutism needs the persecution. The persecution needs the absolutism.

The really difficult route to progress is to oppose both the persecution and the absolutism. And yet that's the only way to break the cycle.