Comment: Confusing loyalty with integrity is neither

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Confusing loyalty with integrity is neither

It seems to me there's all to often a sophomoric moral paradigm among some of the DPers. One day we say, "Hey, this guy's really cool and on our side." The next day we say, "No one should trust that guy because he said this or did that."

There's a real lack of humility in such an inability to see leaders, i.e. people, as just people -- trying, failing, getting back up, honing their weapons, trying again.

There's an immature morality that pits loyalty against integrity. Immature in that it lacks humility.

The first impulse, that rah-rah, he's one of us, is, I suspect, deeply rooted in the evolution of human bonds. It's tribal morality. We're always looking for our tribe, whether linked by blood, locale, political philosophy. We want to latch on to it, in part, because it helps assure us that we're part of a group -- a tribe. But because we are no longer dependent on the tribe for anything more than how we feed off it, we're oh-so quick to condemn a person when our association with him/her isn't meeting our sanctimonious needs. Because we aren't operating in loyalty as it evolved -- for a real person who will have our backs if we have his. We were only loyal as long as our cheerleading for that person continues to make us feel good and right.

Woe to those we put on our pedestals constructed of our own needs. Because if they prove themselves mere mortals, if we start feeling shaky about our own ideals because of our declared association, we're quick to run away. Because we're modern folk with notions of integrity. We won't stand behind someone who says does something that doesn't fit our basement-dwelling, self-serving notions of integrity.

Except people are just people. They will always fall short; they will always disappoint. And the world is always going to be broken and we're always going to be sweeping up shards. The pure only stay pure as long as they never go out.

Go out and try to make something right happen. See what you get to work with. You don't get pristine philosophy. You don't get pristine goodwill, and even when you do, one person's goodwill may very well be the dragon you're trying to slay.

You want to make a difference anyway? You're willing to slog in the trenches, where it's mucky and the guy on your right and left may not have such uncompromising ideals? People will call you names. DPers certainly will. In the words of polar explorer Cherry-Garrard, "And so you will sledge nearly alone, but those with whom you sledge will not be shopkeepers: that is worth a good deal." He was speaking of the shopkeepers as those afraid to risk material goods. It applies as aptly to those afraid to risk their pristine notions of right/wrong on which their shaky notions of themselves are constructed. Shopkeepers. They will always be the majority -- yes, in the liberty movement by about the same ratio as anywhere else.

To the Rands and the Amashs and to those folks I know personally in the liberty movement, who don't succumb to the fickle loyalty of a tribe of shopkeepers -- no matter what label they stick on their foreheads, sledge on.