Friday, September 6, 2013

The (A) Liberal Manifesto

1. Do not be absolutely sure of anything.

2. Accept claims at face value, if provisionally. Insist on style and evidence, whenever convenient. 

3. Applaud skepticism. Defend those who demand proof. Be automatically suspicious of unanimous opinion, bearing in mind that the majority may occasionally be right. 

4. Remember that statements and acts belong to a specific context. 

5. Often, there is little difference in value between a truth and its exact opposite, or between what did happen and what might have happened. 

6. Crassness may possess deliberately concealed subtlety. Always assume this to be the case. This will make the world even more attractive. 

7. Boundary conditions are another country. This is especially comforting when one is thrown into a filthy transport towards a prison camp. 

8. There exist closed systems; these do not entirely admit critical questioning. Respect them, as indeed everything else, as achievements of human imagination. 

9. All values, including the most deeply cherished ones, are arbitrary; assuming we admit arbitrariness in human affairs. 

10. No one is entirely good, or entirely evil. Also, at least some of human activity takes place beyond good and evil. 

11. Delightful and vital as privacy and solitude are, the universe has a right to your attention. This right expires with the end of the universe, or your demise, whichever occurs first.

No comments: