The Left/Right paradigm

Posted on June 13, 2010. Filed under: social ideology |

I have often wondered why it is that in this country we the people have come to be placed into two main ideological camps, the “Left” and the “Right”.  Is this a natural tendency, a mechanism of our psyche, are we creatures that for some genetic reason are predisposed to form belief systems that fall into these almost polar opposites?  Surely this has not always been so, during our very early days on this planet we were a scattered group of clans focusing on the basics of survival, trying to stay alive and procreate, fighting with other clans who were competing for the same resources.  I’m sure that within these groups there were differing ideologies, religious practices, social hierarchy, etc., but for the most part there was a commonality of purpose and a similar social structure.  Can you imagine in the world that existed 10,000 years ago humans that believed they were entitled to be supported in almost every way by their fellow clan members?  Or that certain individuals who due to their inherent genetic traits lacked the same intelligence, sense of initiative, or creativity should be given equality with other members who did exhibit these traits?  I believe that back then, these people held a place in society befitting their status, not that they were put to death or banished, they just were relegated to positions that derived naturally.

Sure, as humans evolved socially and technologically, we naturally moved towards systems that differed dramatically from our early days as scattered tribes.  With the ability to exploit resources on a wider scale, there was less of a need for all members of society to “pull their load” and classes of people  formed that took on positions of leadership and keepers and distributors of knowledge, they took on roles that allowed them to be supported to a larger extent while they focused on the day to day tasks of running the villages, kingdoms, empires, etc.  More and more people were placed in roles that made them rely on being protected, on being kept safe against outsiders who they were still in competition with for resources.  I can see that with the advent of more modern social structures, the individual traits of self reliance and initiative may have started to be replaced with acceptance that more and more needs could be satisfied by the leadership, and these groups on the top of  the pyramid had a vested interest in supplying these requirements for survival to their subjects who were in turn ensuring their continued survival.  This doesn’t seem like such a bad deal, everyone gets what they need, though increasingly there were people who may have wanted something more for themselves, people who asked why they had to grow corn and give a portion to the leadership when maybe they wanted to turn their excess production into something they could use to benefit themselves in some other way, use their labor to increase their position in the society.

There will be more on this topic soon, hopefully we can start to form a hypothesis on the Left/Right paradigm that exists in most modern societies today and try to see through the reasons that certain classes work very hard to perpetuate this ideology.  Is it possible that the more we evolve we in fact see a devolution of human characteristics that are inherent in us, or are we actually moving towards a place where we all achieve an “equality” and is that beneficial or not?


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Posted on June 13, 2010. Filed under: social ideology |

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