“Just follow the science” has been the incessant refrain of those pushing everything from climate change to dangerous injections. Because their claims with regard to these sinister objectives are in conflict with reality and reason, it should not be surprising that they have abandoned the most fundamental of all the sciences: epistemology.
Derived from the Greek ‘epistēmē’ (knowledge) and ‘logos’ (discourse), epistemology is defined as “the science that investigates the origin, nature, methods, and limits of knowledge.”
Ultimately, all true science involves a search for knowledge and truth. Every science therefore rests upon its own epistemology to validate the truth or falsehood of its knowledge obtained against the test of reality.
Unlike the physical world, the political world is a world of abstractions (left and right, conservative and liberal, capitalism and communism, tyranny and freedom, etc). Politics is about ideas, concepts, and theories in conflict. But as with the physical sciences, if those concepts are flawed, tragic consequences may result.
For those on the Right, one of the most destructive concepts to the cause of freedom and individualism is the anti-concept of “polarization,” along with a dismissal of the terms “left” and “right” as being no longer distinguishable.
Those accused of “polarizing” an issue or debate, or of being “extreme right wing,” have found themselves on the defensive, thanks to a mistaken belief that these attributes are something negative. This is evidence that those on the Left have been incredibly successful at concept destruction.
“When (polarization) is used as a pejorative term,” warned Ayn Rand in 1971, “this means that men should not differ in their views – that such differences are evil, that men must not disagree. In the absence of intellectual polarization we are witnessing the growth of the ugliest kind of divisiveness (driven) by a common hatred of some other group – not by choice – but by terror.”
In politics, there are only two directions in which to move: Leftward towards tyranny, or to the Right where only Freedom and Capitalism reside. By retreating from accusations of “polarization,” those on the Right are missing a golden opportunity to define and describe the values that distinguish Left from Right.
“What this country needs above all is the clarifying … guidance of fundamental principles: intellectual polarization,” advised Rand. “This would bring to our cultural atmosphere an all-but-forgotten quality: honesty, with its corollary, clarity. It would enable men to know their own stand and that of their adversaries. No open disagreement can be as destructive as the secret nameless virulent hostility now splintering this country.”
Contrary to popular opinion, political polarity is a healthy and positive attribute of a free and open society. Rather than being a cause of divisiveness and disunity, under the polarity of open debate “divided we stand and united we fall” may prove to be the true formula for a unity that’s Just Right.
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