on constructs

this is quite randomi was going through a site the other day where they were trying to figure out the best way to select moderators/admins.someone said respect needs to be commanded, someone else said it needs to be earned. which of course led to me wondering about the systems in play behind these constructs.for example; extrapolating Camus’ master-slave relationship in rebellions, one might imagine all social constructs as an infinite (well, finite, but  uninterestingly large a number to bother counting) set of master-slave relationships.i believe it was Geertz who called culture “webs of significance” that we weave around ourselves. these webs, then; are constructs, in which we choose to take the lead, or sit back and let others. each decision, then, is an acceptance of being a master or a slave for the purpose of that decision.by extension, rebellion must imply the slave who rebels, which in the case of the master implies that the master becomes/is a slave to a yet higher system of order. where does this chain start, and where does it end? or is it one of those constructs without beginning or end, always in flux?i suppose by my own statement at the beginning (of an infinite set of  master-slave relationships) it is always in flux.how can this idea help greater understanding, better decision-making? how valuable is the knowledge of where you stand in each master-slave relationship, and more importantly, what each master-slave relationship is?the plot thickens.

the world in flux

the world has changed many times over in the past few years–and we’ve heard that particular quotation so many times, that it probably sounds hollow, even. indifference has always been the price of undying vigilance.

of course, the vigilance in the case of the World is perceived vigilance–the belief that (ideally) governments care about what’s happening in the World, and are trying to do the right thing. American foreign policy has been over the past many decades rather myopic in its World view; always seeming to cut corners in trying to make the metaphorical “fast buck”.

we’ve seen it with the many problems that have arisen from American military intervention over the past many years, over and over again. in the past, threats were in the form of the Great Powers (like the former USSR) . today, threats are less specific. the threats are people, ideas, systems of discontent that are partially the creation of democracies–and the failed policies of democracies. very often, these failures have been highly avoidable.

while the first few paragraphs of this were written a while ago; i’m adding this part now as a note of sorts.

i have been writing up an essay on the Naxal “problem” recently, as a project in Contemporary Issues. i will put up the essay in some time when it’s ready; and i think it will go some lengths in explaining not just my perspective on these issues, or the foundations of discontent in society, or why i refer to it as the “Naxal problem”. watch out for that coming up in another week or so.

you might wonder what i’m on about, starting off with American foreign policy and centering on Indian domestic policy, but I guess the essay will be self-explanatory.