Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Ethical Socialism

"Ethical-socialism is neither more nor less than the sentiment of action-at-a-distance, the moral pathos of the third dimension; and the root feeling of Care-care for those who are with us, and for those who are to follow."

OSWALD SPENGLER, THE DECLINE OF THE WEST, p.178, of the abridged edition, Helmut Werner, ( translation by C.F. Atkinson and re-prepared by Arthur Helps), The Modern Library, New York.)

"If we allow that Socialism (in the ethical, not the economic, sense) is the world-feeling which seeks to carry out its own views on behalf of all, then we are without exception, willingly or no, wittingly or no, Socialists. Even Nietzsche, that most passionate opponent of the ‘herd morale’, was perfectly incapable of limiting his zeal to himself in the Classical way. He thought only of ‘mankind’, and he attacked everyone who differed from himself. Epicurus, on the contrary, was heartily indifferent to others’ opinions and acts. But Nietzschean Zarathustra – though professedly standing beyond good and evil – breathes from end to end the pain of seeing men to be other than as he would have them be, and the deep and utterly un-Classical desire to devote a life to their reformation – his own sense of the word, naturally, being the only one. It is just this, the general transvaluation, that makes ethical monotheism and – using the word in a novel and deep sense – socialism. All world improvers are Socialists."

(OSWALD SPENGLER, pp. 176-177).

By virtue of Nietzsche’s hostility to mob values (in Nietzsche’s Vedantist terminology i.e. Chandala morality), he has been accused by some Marxoids of being a reactionary,and many degenerate laissez-faire economic-elitists, such as Ayn Rand, have hailed him as one of their own. Both of these views are completely incorrect, as will be demonstrated by reference to Nietzsche’s writings.

"For what drove me to the poorest, O Zarathustra? Was it not disgust with our richest? – disgust with those punished by riches, who glean advantage from all kinds of sweepings, with cold eyes, rank thoughts, disgust with this rabble that stinks to heaven, disgust with this guilded, debased mob whose fathers were pick-pockets or carrion-birds or ragmen with compliant, lustful forgetful wives – for they are all of them not far from whores – mob above and mob below! What are the ‘poor’ and ‘rich’ today! I unlearned this distinction – then I fled away, far away and even farther, until I came to these cows."

(FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE, THUS SPOKE ZARATHUSTRA, Penguin Classics (translation by R.J. Hollingdale), p. 228)

" ‘Good manners?’ replied the other king indignantly and bitterly. ‘What is it we are avoiding then? Is it not good manners? Our good company? – Truly, better to live amongst hermits and goat herds than with our guilded, false, painted rabble – although it calls itself ‘nobility’. But there everything is false and rotten, most of all the blood, thanks to old evil diseases and worse quacks. – I think the finest and dearest man today is a healthy peasant, uncouth, cunning, obstinate, enduring: that is the noblest type today. – The peasant is the finest man today; and the peasantry should be master. But ours is the kingdom of the rabble – I no longer let myself be taken in. (F.NIETZSCHE, pp. 258-259).

"But whoever wants to eat with us must also lend a hand, even the kings. For with Zarathustra even a king may be a cook." (F. NIETZSCHE, p. 295).

" ‘The moon has its court, and the court has its mooncalves: to all that comes from the court, however, do the paupers and all the adroit pauper-virtues pray. ‘I serve, you serve, we serve’ – thus all adroit virtue pray to the prince: so that the merited star may at last be fastened to the narrow breast. But the moon still revolves around all that is earthly: so the prince too, still revolves around what is most earthly of all: that, however, is the shopkeepers’ gold. The God of Hosts is not the god of the golden ingots; the prince proposes, but the shopkeeper – disposes!’".

" ‘By all that is luminous and strong and good in you, O Zarathustra! Spit upon this city of shopkeepers and turn back! Here all blood flows foul and tepid and frothy through all veins: spit upon the great city that is the great rubbish pile where all the scum froths together! Spit upon the city of flattened souls and narrow breasts, of slant eyes and sticky fingers – upon the city of importunate, the shameless, the ranters in writing and speech, the overheated ambitious: where everything rotten, disreputable, lustful, gloomy, overripe, ulcerous, conspiratorial festers together – spit upon the city and turn back!’"

"But here Zarathustra interrupted the frothing fool and stopped his mouth. ‘Have done!’ (cried Zarathustra). ‘Your speech and your kind have long disgusted me! Why do you live so long in the swamp that you had to become a frog and toad yourself? Does not foul, foaming swamp-blood now flow through your own veins, so that you have learned to quack and rail like this? Why did you not go into the forest? Or plough the earth? Is the sea not full of green islands?’"

" ‘I despise your contempt; and since you warned me, why did you not warn yourself? My contempt and my bird of warning shall ascend from LOVE ALONE; not from the swamp! They call you my ape, you frothing fool: but I call you my grunting pig – by grunting you are undoing even my praise of folly. What, then, was it that started you grunting? That nobody had flattered you enough: therefore you sat beside this filth, so that you might have cause for much grunting – so that you might have cause for much revenge! For all your frothing, you vain fool, is revenge; I have divined you well!’"

" ‘But your foolish teaching is harmful to me, even when you are right! And if Zarathustra’s teaching were a hundred times justified, YOU would still – USE my teaching falsely!’ Thus spoke Zarathustra; and he looked at the great city, sighed and was long silent. At length he spoke thus: ‘This great city, and not only this fool, disgusts me. In both there is nothing to make better, nothing to make worse. Woe to this great city! And I wish I could see already the pillar of fire in which it will be consumed! For such pillars of fire must precede the great noontide. Yet this has its time and its own destiny. But I offer you in farewell this precept, you fool: where one can no longer love, one should – PASS BY.’"

(F. NIETZSCHE, pp. 195-198).

"Watch and listen, you solitaries! From the future come winds with a stealthy flapping of wings; and good tidings go out to delicate ears. You solitaries of today, you have seceded from society, you shall one day be a people: from you, who have chosen out yourselves, shall a chosen people (my note: not to be confused with the "Chosen People", chauvinistic psychology of Talmudic Zionism, as according to Nietzschean philosophy, such a psychology is incompatible with mental hygiene) spring – and from this chosen people, the superman!"

"Truly, the earth shall yet become a house of healing! And already a new odour floats about it, an odour that brings health – and a new hope!"

(F. NIETZSCHE, pp. 102-103).

As a sample of Nietzschean philosophy, the cited extracts are more than decisive in establishing that he certainly was not a reactionary. A reactionary is one who desires to return to some previous Golden Age. Nietzsche who had a natural respect for the past believed that it would serve as a measure by which the future could be anticipated - his Golden Age is the New Dawn which will follow the great noontide of our Western Judaeo–Christian civilization. Neither was Nietzsche a conservative – he believed that all which was withered and devoid of objective organic vitality, should be toppled so as to permit new nascent life to replace it.
(All of the above is a selective sampling of an article by Alec Saunders entitled Nietzsche And Ethical Socialism For The New Millennium located on the Australian Nationalist site RADNET)