CONservative Societies are Stagnant

As many of you know, I am agnostic when it comes to ideologies because.. face it- they ALL represent various versions of zero sum game. They all defend some status quo that is not particularly favorable to me, and most likely you.

Having said that some ideologies are worse than others. CONservative ideologies, western or eastern, come under the group of especially toxic ideologies. So what makes CONservatism more toxic than LIEbralism?

The simple answer is- Long Term Effects.

Can you think of even ONE civilization that did not stagnate after it went CONservative?

It may surprise you, but almost every CONservative civilization and culture had periods where it advanced quickly, made great contributions to human knowledge and did great things. So why did they stop?

In each and every case where they were not destroyed by natural causes or their sequela, they became smug and CONservative. Civilizations that achieve big leaps over their neighbors often suffer from a set of delusions including- they have ‘found it all’, ‘are all powerful’ and ‘nobody can ever catch up or surpass them’. This set of delusions by itself does not cause CONservatism, but sets up the next two steps that ensure it.

The next logical, if not rational, step after the delusion of “we know all” is the ape mind trying to play zero sum games. The result of these games is a rise in the power of the priesthood of that society, required to legitimize the scams perpetrated by the rich CONmen. The unfortunate secondary effect of this change is that the innovative are either working for the CONmen or being opposed by the priests.

This leads to a further lack of innovation and the appearance of two more self destructive behaviors- navel gazing and nostalgia. While neither introspection or nostalgia are by themselves problematic- in combination with each other and a zero sum zeitgeist they set in motion the next step.

The next step is a general social attitude that looks upon distorted, fraudulent and rose colored visions of the past as a guide for the future. This is what most of you know as CONservatism.

CONservatism is fucked up because it believes, and builds a whole world around, one fatally flawed idea.

The best way to solve new problems is through the use of old methods.

That is in essence why CONservatism causes stagnation. The assumption of total knowledge results in the inability or unwillingness to solve problems other than those encountered in the past. Moreover, old problems are solved only as well, and frequently worse, than in the past.

Since the world, physical and human, is not constant- sooner or later CONservatives will encounter a situation that will either destroy them or cripple them. Paradoxically, crippled CONservatives often become even more CONservative- largely because they refuse to believe that they were wrong.

Consider the track record of CONservatism. Have cultures and civilizations that embraced CONservative ideologies ever progressed after that? Why did India stagnate after the 6th century AD? China stagnated even earlier.. inspite of a brief reprieve under the Song dynasty. What about Japan? In every case it took multiple phases of colonialism, warlord-ism, violent civil wars and in the case of japan- two black ships and a world war to get them to look at the world around them. In each case they lost about 1-2 thousand years which could have been used for advancement and progress.

Europe itself progressed only after the black death, renaissance and printing made people aware of the folly of their old ways. LIEbralism, while irritating and occasionally frustrating, carries within it the ability to change, innovate and adapt as necessary- CONservatism does not, nor can it admit to be anything less than complete.


  1. Negative_Sum_Behavior
    September 13, 2010 at 9:22 pm

    It’s ironic that you talk about zero-sum behavior when most behavior today is… insanely so by the way…. negative sum. In fact, that is a fraudulent statement as well.

    Most “behavior” today is negative value for most or all parties involved.

    Conservatives lock up non-violent, tax-paying, with children, pot-smokers at the cost of tens of thousands of dollars a year.

    Now, they are paying all that money… a negative value.. but at least they are DESTROYING THE LIFE of that pot-smoker, right?

    Zero Sum leads to Negative Sum.

    They are willing to pay the cost to inflict a higher cost on another. Very Russian.


  2. namae nanka
    September 15, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    I like this line: Liberals are conservatives of a utopia that they believe they can reach.

    During the Song Dynasty (960 to 1276) the position of women in society dropped to a new low. Until this time women had been schooled in the arts and versed in the classics; they held independent rights to property and wealth, and could marry or remarry at will. New ideology, however, redefined their status, laying the groundwork to keep nearly half of China’s population obedient and limited in skill and ability. Women’s roles were defined only in the context of complete dependence upon men: a female was to remain in the home, where she was required to obey her father and older brother in childhood, her husband in marriage, and her son if widowed. It was considered unwise to educate women, supporting the belief that “in a woman stupidity is a virtue”.

    doesn’t sound like LIEbral to me

  3. Wald
    September 17, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    I’ve noticed that there is more advertising; specifically, there are ads under you articles.

    Do these ads pay website upkeep?

    I did too! supposedly puts ads on popular blogs.

    So either my blog is getting popular- according to their metrics, or they are putting ads on even average blogs. I still don’t make a cent, but that could change..

  4. September 17, 2010 at 8:04 pm

    I would beg to differ on the subject of Europe. Although granted they weren’t “conservative” as such. Europe certainly picked itself up after the decline of the Roman Empire, which I suppose could be considered a empire that started off strong and virile, and then let itself become fat and complacent.

    The downfall of the western roman empire was the same as for every empire (and every overachieving parasite)- it ran out of hosts.

    Adopting and developing technology led to things like the heavy plough, which in turn allowed greater food production which meant people could become more urbanised and spend more time developing other technologies.

    That was in no way harmed by the constant friction with the Muslim empires, which forced the development of weapons and armour. By the 16th century the Europeans were basically lords of all they surveyed.

    No! Europeans only won lasting victories against stone age societies. Look at Asia- see many whites? Why not?

    Of course complacency allows others to compete, and the West has become fat and complacent, ready in turn to be replaced by new up and comers. Chesterton summed it up when he said that the true conservative had to be utterly radical in order to maintain the status quo, left to itself decay is inevitable. In that respect there’s no difference between liberal and conservative. The conservative says that the boat is fine, the liberal says it needs a coat of paint, the realist says there’s a hole in it and it’s sinking.

    Hubris is not complacency, though it can lead to it.

    Say hello to Davy Jones for me.

  5. slumlord
    September 19, 2010 at 4:46 am

    You might be interested in this discussion I’m having with Jim Kalb on the subject.

  6. slumlord
    September 19, 2010 at 4:47 am
  7. K(yle)
    September 19, 2010 at 8:01 am

    The divide between ‘Conservative’ and ‘Liberal’ isn’t a useful distinction. As another poster pointed out, the Song Dynasty is seen as ultraconservative for the most part by historians, but you see it as Liberal because it was forward thinking.

    Everything that you attribute to Conservatism is also true of Liberalism. Everything. How do you classify people who look onto a Progressive period of history with nostalgia and want to bring back the ethos of that time to their conservative culture? Liberals or conservatives? What about people that want to try the same solutions that are proven to not work over and over again based on ideology? Any different than Conservatives wanting to try old solutions to new problems? It’s the exact same psychological phenomena, no matter if they got it from the Bible or their Gender Studies textbook.

    Of course the roots of those Liberal beliefs are in fact truly ancient themselves. As Conservatives we simply revere the past, and as Liberals we pretent the things we stole are brand new. It’s still the same thing though. Conservatives appropriate the ancient as their own. Heirs to an ancient dynasty. Liberals appropriate the same and obfuscate the origins of their beliefs in order to better take ownership of the belief.

    They then inherit those beliefs from generation to generation though, as white Western Liberals do the Enlightenment that they had nothing to do with, and modern college aged kids do the Civil Rights movement, Feminism, et cetera that they likewise had nothing to do with. They are part of a noble line of Freedom Fighters though, that extends to the Days of Yore in the long forgotten lands of their People that once existed in the 1960s, populated by mythical figures and martyrs like MLK and JFK; whose own teachings and beliefs a scant ~50 years away from their deaths are probably about as distorted as those of a historical Jesus if indeed such a person did exist.

    All in all I’d say you are deluding yourself. What you are observing isn’t two strains of ideology, but human nature regardless of ideology.

  1. September 19, 2010 at 2:30 am
  2. February 11, 2011 at 4:34 pm
  3. May 28, 2011 at 2:35 pm
  4. November 17, 2011 at 4:27 am

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