I just can't seem to fit into society
I hold no hope for this dim simplicity
Of law and order
By whose rules?
I see no rhyme and no reason
I hold no hope for this holy treason
Of love and so soft
By whose standards?
By my standards
The song has a time metric of 11/8, hence the title of the song.
An interesting comment to my post, The Law (No, Not THAT One), offered by Voluntaryist June 27, 2017 at 10:23 AM. Let’s jump right in:
Are "old & good" two ideals by which to judge?
We must judge by some “ideal.” As “old” suggests predictability in the law (a tremendously good characteristic, if you ask me), I guess it depends on your definition of “good.” Do you offer a better “ideal”?
Is "because we've always done it that way" a valid argument?
Did I make that argument? It really depends on your definition of “good.”
How is "good" defined?
That’s the question, isn’t it. As long as two or more humans are destined to interact, someone (or something) must define it. It’s kind of tough to agree to disagree on something like this.
Isn't it done by consensus?
Not in the Germanic Middle Ages; every individual noble could veto the king. But, of course, he only had legitimacy in this if he could lean on old and good law and if his peers generally agreed…so…yes. Kind of circular, I know; things get messy when dealing with humans in the real world.
Do the majority ever hold a "bad" as a "good" and evolve ethically? I think so.
Yes, it has happened. At least according to my ideal, my standard. Maybe not to theirs.
If we accept a current "good" as valid, in spite of its irrationality, are we independent thinkers?
Who is to judge the rationality of “good”? Who is to say that one’s independent thinking is more independent than another’s? What standard? What ideal?
If not, is that immoral?
Based on what standard? What ideal?
Is it moral to renounce conscience in favor of custom or consensus?
Maybe no renouncing is involved. Who says an individual’s conscience is “moral”? Based on what standard?
Is that what the optimal human does?
“The optimal human”? Is this a lab experiment?
Really, it depends on a chosen standard. Who is to say who (or what) is “the optimal human”? Is it appropriate to describe as “the optimal human” one who acts in an immoral (based on what standard?) manner as long as he is following his conscience?
Or is it slavish obedience to authority?
Not if it is reasonably consistent with one’s standard. When interacting with humans, “reasonably consistent” is pretty good.
And common practice, but inhuman all the same?
I wouldn’t describe following common practice as “inhuman.” In fact, it is very human; most people do it, sway with the wind. The key questions (and I know I sound like a broken record):
What is the standard? Who decides?
Two thoughts come to mind: first, when dealing with humans, perfect is not an option; second, you can’t replace something with nothing.
Dreamers of all types have failed to understand these; schemers of all types know all too well that there is an infinite supply of dreamers. The world is littered with the dead bodies of the beneficiaries of the schemers’ schemes – to include many of the aforementioned dreamers.
Which leads to a third thought: every dreamer’s dream starts out with a promise for a more peaceful and just world. None have ended this way.