Liberty & Democracy in Western Civilisation by Roger Scruton

Conservative philosopher Roger Scruton delivers the keynote address at the Institute of Public Affairs' 2014 Foundations of Western Civilisation Symposium.


The Pyramid Of Power by Major C. H. Douglas
The English Review 28 (1919): 49-58
At various well-defined epochs in the history of civilisation there has occurred such a clash of apparently irreconcilable ideas as has at this time most definitely come upon us. Now, as then, from every quarter come the unmistakable signs of crumbling institutions and discredited formulæ, while the widespread nature of the general unrest, together with the immense range of pretext alleged for it, is a clear indication that a general re-arrangement is imminent......

The other aspect of the problem, the overwhelming importance, at the moment, of the reaction of economics on psychology, is due to the attempt to fit economics into a system which can only make the individual the complete slave of environment.

If any genuine attempt is made to extract a useful lesson from the history of human development, the conclusion is irresistible that the process is one long and, on the whole, continuously successful struggle to subdue environment, to the end that individuality may have the utmost freedom. Now, by the operation, misunderstanding, and misuse of our financial and industrial system in its application to economics, we have created an economic position which is such a formidable threat to the material existence of the individual that he is obliged to subordinate every consideration to an effort to cope with it. Partly by education and partly by what may be called instinct, it is increasingly understood that misdirected effort and unsound distributing arrangements, while operating to minister to the will-to-power, are entirely responsible for the position in which we find ourselves.

The practical issue at this time, therefore, is not at all whether this condition is to continue—it is simply one regarding the number of experiments, all very probably involving great general discomfort, which we are to endure until the inevitable rearrangement in alignment with the purpose of evolution is satisfactorily accomplished. And the suppression and perversion of the facts, on which alone sound constructive effort can be based, can have but one result—to increase the number of these experiments and the discomfort of the process.



 

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Thursday, 29 September 2022