Friday, 1 April 2011

Political Correctness

Or Ideological Correctness

"Political correctness (PC) is the dominant ideology of the Western intellectual world – PC is what the West has instead of a religion.

Political correctness obviously dominates its core territory of politics, public administration (the civil service), law, education and (especially!) the mass media. But PC also substantially shapes everything else: foreign policy, the military, policing, the economy, health services, and personal life: the mating game, friendships and even family life.

Therefore political correctness is objectively totalitarian. Just as with the cruder totalitarianism of the mid-twentieth century, PC has created a population that lives in fear: fear of being denounced and losing everything – committing a thought crime or uttering a hate fact for which there is no defence, and the sanctions against which range from social ostracism, through loss of job, financial penalties, impoverishment, mob violence and imprisonment (for ‘hate crimes’).

Consequently the mass of people, especially those of status - with power and influence – have learned and internalized the constraints of political correctness, so that it is now something inside us, as well as pressing upon us. The lies, shabbiness and wickedness of PC now permeate our very thought processes.

So, political correctness is the ruling ideology of the West, and it is everywhere, so it cannot be attacked or overthrown without attacking and overthrowing pretty much everything. Political correctness is therefore de facto unrefutable, immovable, expansile... and yet, of course, as we all recognize, PC is self-destroying.

Am I saying that Western civilization is doomed? Yes, very probably it is doomed.

Can anything be done to prevent this, anything political perhaps? No – I don’t think so."


The Drive to Audit Everything

"Summerhill School -- successful even by conventional measures such as examination results, and widely respected for its extraordinary contribution to democracy and for fostering of all kinds of intelligence, creativity, enterprise, and adaptability -- was put under threat of closure for no other reason than daring to take a stand against the rigidity of audit-culture principles"

"The only cloud is a bad report from the Quality Assurance Agency – which has the power to recommend Buckingham lose its royal charter – but Kealey says the agency never went into classrooms, and just looked at paperwork and committee minutes. "It's really a process assurance agency." He points out that Buckingham consistently tops student satisfaction surveys. That is probably because its student-staff ratio is the best in the country and, since they're paying full fees, students have to convince themselves the courses are worth it."

" Patent examiners `measure their own performance in terms of their output', which of course is the number of patents approved, regardless of whether the patents make sense... Goodhart's law cuts deep."

`When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure.'

"So, for instance, a typical neo-Benthamite public-policy construction needs a measure of national utility, such as "GDP" (roughly, net business-to-consumer sales)...
For instance, America has built an enormous debt by consuming beyond its income - thus maximizing GDP. Oops."