Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Reality is Not Liberal

"Reality has a well-known liberal bias" seems to be a common response to complaints of liberal bias in the media and academia.

Let us state the obvious: reality has no bias... how people react to it does.

We hate suffering, especially the closer it is to "home" and our own situation. But, hating suffering does not make "reality" liberal. In fact, it makes reality absurd, cruel, and indifferent to human emotions.

Floods, fires, famines, diseases, and other disasters have no political agendas. How we react to them does.
Rhetorical flourishes that try to naturalize political beliefs are silly. If one political or economic model were "natural" and inherent in humanity, why has it not dominated? In fact, the only "natural" order I can see is that people try to protect themselves and their closest group -- regardless of what political or economic model might work at a given moment.

Reality is unpredictable. It requires flexibility. It is not one thing... unless you try to define "liberal" in the classical sense, which would mean humans need to adapt to this absurd universe.

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