Why Progressives Are Always Wrong
The Objectivist Ayn Rand wrote a lot about the Aristotelian Law of Identity – where A is A – and the associated (Platonic) “Law of Non-Contradiction,” where a thing must be what it is and it cannot be something else. Liberals believe in subjectivism, or solipsism, that way they don’t have to be held accountable by reality.
In the progressives’ world there is no such thing as contradiction – only “false choices.” One could even say that Marxist theory (based on Hegelian theory) wars against the notion of non-contradiction by posing that thesis and anti-thesis are united in a synthesis.
Yet things are not this way. Either there is objective reality or everything is as a dream, with no causation (like Hume argued) and no consequences (as the Frankfurt School would have us believe). It cannot be that there is a half-way objective reality and half-way a dream that are synthesized. Ontologically speaking, it is either one way or the other. Either there is a real world that exists independently of our minds that we perceive, or everything is an illusion of the mind. The latter alternative is impossible, because a universe cannot be the unity of one mind, the product of a self-generated illusion with no external causes. This idea is non-sensical.
Thus all progressive arguments, based on post-modernism, post-structuralism, subjectivism, intrinsicism, solipsism, radical skepticism, and pure idealism, rest on feet of clay because these ideologies’ ontological assumptions are simply wrong or even absurd.
Note: Occasionally you will get the pseudo-intellectual who holds up the Wave-Particle Theory of Light as an example of how the Law of Non-Contradiction is incorrect. Yet light is a phenomenon that we perceive in a distinctly human fashion; we receive and interpret sense-data using our eyes. Our minds thus use concepts to describe the sense-data we refer to as “light.”
But even if we explain light’s behavior as exhibiting characteristics of a wave in some circumstances and as a particle in other circumstances, we should not conclude that light is both two different phenomena at the same time – simply because our apprehension of its behavior at the sub-atomic level is only indirectly observable and not fully understood. Ultra-violet and infra-red light are not directly perceivable, but since some physicists’ rationality indicated to them that these types of light must exist (in the wave spectrum) they invented instruments to detect these other wave-lengths.
An excellent supplementary example of how rationality can guide our interpretation of sense-data, and actually our discovery of new forms of sense-data, is the history of the concept of the atom. The idea that material reality is composed of miniscule discrete units was first formulated in ancient Greece by Leucippus and his student Democritus. The concept of the atom was confirmed empirically much later using electron microscopes.
The formulation of the related concept of the molecule was developed in the early 19th century by such physicists as Avogadro.The structure of molecules was later confirmed empirically by the “evil” corporation IBM.
What led to real progress is the acknowledgment that there is an objective reality by such men as Sir Isaac Newton and Sir Francis Bacon. Their pioneering in the philosophy of science fostered a neo-Aristotelian scientific revolution whose tangible benefits we are still reaping today, and whose base ontological assumptions the political left directly war against. The way to preserve the legacy and the ideological integrity of Western Civilization is to understand and appreciate its philosophical and cultural heritage.