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Sweeney's Journal
Sweeney's Journal
December 26, 2014

Honestum is moral good

And where money is honor poverty is dishonor.

In honor societies as opposed to money societies, if some one takes your stuff they take your honor, and if you don't take it back you have no honor, and are trash anyone can kick around, and so, useless in the company of free men.

What are we supposed to do then when the rich have stolen our whole commonwealth. We have run out of cheeks to turn. And you know the same thing happened in Judea. People were suing each other for their tunics and Jesus said offer them your pants too. The place was poor, squabbling over pennies, and sons were neglecting the care of their parent to give money to the temple.

All the money was in Jerusalem, enough for triumphs and the Colosseum which was a huge 40 year building project. There was plenty of money and the rich who where also in league with the priests had it all. Like Marx said, and I think quoting another: High profits are synonymous with glut. When all the wealth is in the hands of the rich, you have no economy.

December 17, 2014

Culture as the engine driving all human behavior

Morality is culture, and I am willing to defend this. But having been banned from a discussion of culture because it was in relation to the slaughter of children in Pakistan I make this offering here. And I would remind DU does spell du, and it is a big world out there full of places full of open minds. I am not justifying what people do. Often what is horrible to us is horrible to all; but it is like Apocalypse Now: The Horror. And the Horror is often how people win, when the other side can take no more of it.

Still it is not out of bounds to talk of culture since every war is a conflict of cultures. And to understand culture as the engine of human behavior is the correct analogy. No one ignorant of mechanics would look at any part of a motor and start ripping off parts that seem in their minds useless. Consider the ancient Egyptians who cared for their dead with great devotion to duty, and saved all the organs of the dead for their afterlife; with the exception of the brain, which they pulled out and threw to the dogs. They thought without knowing, that the brain only produced snot, and that is certainly true of some people here, but is not always the case. They were only saving the dead a future of running noses; but if their beliefs were true they were denying the dead their brains in the afterlife.

Cultures are not created out of theory, but out of reality. They may seem like an effect without a cause, but it is nonsense to look at a durable culture clearly able to defend itself as bearing the burden of so many effects without cause. Culture is knowledge as community is morality. Both culture and morality reflect what societies have learned through survival of what works for their survival. Anyone daring to start pulling characteristics out of culture, especially foreign cultures with out an extensive understanding of how these attributes came into being is not only insane, but a criminal.

These cultural attributes have a reason for being. If we do not have the reason for its being, neither do we have the attribute; but what vanity makes a person want to tamper with another complex human accomplishment that clearly works for survival on the basis of answered need? People judge, but it is prejudice. Knowledge is judgment, said Kant, but true judgment means true knowledge. We have no right to judge, but only because we do not have the ability to judge fairly. We judge out of ignorance of our own culture and theirs. And Here I admit that I should be PC because you are so PC; but I have a great regard for the truth, and if you folks find the truth offensive, then kick me out and close the door because I will not suffer fools in silence.

There are a lot of individual actions in this world that turn my stomach as much as they will turn the stomach of any decent human being. Every individual action is justified to a degree by culture. Culture can never be understood fully subjectively or objectively. We cannot gain perspective on our culture enough to grasp it as an abstraction. We cannot see other cultures clearly because of our own subjective prejudices arising out of our own cultural experience. Where is the possibility of seeing culture scientifically?

I understand the problem of any attempted objective examination of culture, and yet it is not too much to ask of any group which I associate with. I know it is impossible. I know it takes much anthropology and sociology studied to give anyone the ability to extrapolate information from one culture to another. But it takes nothing in this age of science to accept that nothing exist without a cause, and this is true of the characteristics of culture. To abuse me, to deny me privileges because I dare to tell this simple truth of the matter is childish. Do you burn books here; because I have a lot of anthropology and sociology in mind.

Culture is not an abstraction, but an accretion. Time alone builds cultures out of, and toward survival. If you judge culture you judge on the basis of ignorance which is prejudice. I am not saying what people did was right. I am certain they will learn how wrong and unproductive it was. What I am saying is we do not have the knowledge to judge even our own culture which can hardly be said to work justice for us, and increase our chances of survival.

I refuse to live with my own ignorance, and I have read extensively, and what is more; I refuse to live with your ignorance. I do not to expect to stop people from attacking or meddling in other cultures. Ignorance acts and knowledge observes. I will not be a party to it. and I will not be judged by ignorance. And I say this knowing full well that the ignorant are prejudiced.


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