Friday, January 01, 2010

Social Creationism

A common accusation hurled at those who support a market without a central plan, is that of "Social Darwinism." The term is never explicitly defined in these particular cases, because a precise definition of the term renders it useless as any sort of attack against those who prefer markets that lack central plans.

But taking the critics of the free market at their words, hypothetically assuming there may be a basis to the epithet that is used in place of an argument, what exactly is the antithesis of Social Darwinism?

Since in the debates between science and religion the term "Darwinist" is used as an epithet against scientists by creationists, then would it not be proper to consider those who use the term "Social Darwinist" against free markets to be "Social Creationist"?

It may seem a silly line of reasoning, but consider the implications of "Social Creationism." It would imply that each person is born into a specific set social class and that the classes, like the species, are immutable. True, there may be "Micro Social Darwinism" where someone in the lower class can become a wealthier member of the lower class, and an aristocrat can fall upon hard times and become a less wealthy aristocrat, but no matter how wealthy a peasant is always a peasant and less of a person than the nobility. These roles are defined at the moment of creation and cannot be changed.

This fits very neatly with Marx' "class logic' where there was a 'proletarian logic' and a 'bourgeois logic'. One is a member of their class and it cannot be changed. In Marx' system, the different classes were inevitably at war and cannot be reconciled.

That is a point of view that also fits neatly with the pre-enlightenment mentality of nobility itself, that the peasants were beneath the nobility. Thus Aristocracy and Marxism are both Social Creationist philosophies.

It's an interesting mental exercise, and it would probably confound the person using "Social Darwinism" as an epithet if the rebuttal is to call the person a "Social Creationist."

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