Topic: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

Man needs society.  That has been commonly said and we accept it as true.  But it is also the case that society needs man.  There is more.  Society needs man as society conceives man to be.  And society conceives man as society needs man to be.  This will be a work in philosophical anthropology.  I want to talk first about the liberating effect--freedom and spontaneity--of this discipline.  As the word philosophy suggests, we do not commit ourselves in this essay to hard or empirical so-called facts.  Precisely because we are only creatively objective we are sensitive to the high-sounding moralistic notions of other theoriests--notably with regard to the concepts "human" and "humanity" that parade as empirical science.   Obviously the scientific method gives proven results; but its methods are plodding and unimaginative.  Science has come to be the haven of dull personalities (consider archeologists).  The great advantage in garnering facts that hard science has is offset, in part, by the extreme lack of creativity of science.  I would suggest that world knowledge advances through philosophy, or soft science, rather than through strict empiricism.  Positivism is a case in point.  As a dominant position in philosophy, positivism shows this stiffling and deadening effect of science.  The history of science is full of creativity.  Though the history of science shows moments of intuition and creativity, such intuition is not science itself; rather intuition is philosophical.  The plodding methods that have been practiced in recent anthropology tend to dull, rather than inform, the general questions intelligent people have regarding their own existence as human beings.  I began my philosophical adventure 50 or more years ago, probably on the beaches of northern Michicgan where I whiled away the (then) long summers in protracted periods of introversion.  I grew up in the leisure class of America, in the summer wonderland of Lake Michigan where I was unsucessfully admonished  that, if I did not care to have a summer job I should take up water skiing (or something like that).  This was the wisdom such as it was of my parents.   But I just read.  I will talk sometime about the books I read, above all Schopenhauer who was my first and still beloved mentor.  My path continued more or less constantly in a winding and plodding course toward my goal.  I believe in something called destiny.  My conception of destiny is nothing supernatural, on the other hand, but is an idea one has in one's head that will not let go of one.  For someone who did not want a regular workaday life and or kind of finance-oriented discipline, I was nevertheless focused.  The path I took and the stops I made along the way were all related, I feel, to the topic taken up by Philosophical Anthropology.  I married a future professor of German partly because I was attracted to German philosophy; in Germany, in those early years, I bonded with my wife but also I bonded simultaneously with Germany which I love as much as my own Country.  In Tuebingen, where I was with my wife,  I took a course titled Philosophische Anthropologie under Otto Friedrich Bullnow, who I consider a mentor of mine.  After Tubingen there was a winding road which led to a doctorate in anthropology, a termination at the University of Mississippi on grounds reported to be, but not officially announced, of "unprofessional remarks of a racial nature."  As Oscar Wilde would put it:  I know these statements to be true but I only wish I could have said them about myself.  But that is all past history.  I have no regrets about this period of my life.  I want to avoid the whinnyness that creeps into many Conservative writings and speeches.  After Mississippi I took a short bumpy road to my present university, where I have now spent 39 years.  Again, there are no regrets.  This is the place where I was "destined" to be.  I will, on the other hand, put my own work up against the work of any other man, and that includes another mentor of mine--and a great enemy--Friedrich Engels.   I will talk later of his argument with Eugen Duehring.  To conclude my authobiographical section:  I was a landlord for many years where I sought to bolster my teaching salary.  My wife and I put for children, all white (in case there is any doubt), through The University of Illinois.  My outward life has been one of a staid professor (with a little real estate on the side).  It remains only to be said that my great love of Philosophical Anthropology, which has been my guiding light, has shut as many doors to me as it has opened.  That is, in a practical sense.  America is simply not ready for Philosophical Anthropology.  This has nothing to do with any ideology, since PA is more liberal than conservative, but simply a suspicion that Americans and British have of "anything German."  The British anarchist, who had a small newsletter called The Egoist, SE Parker, has truthfully characterized me as follows:  "Swartzbaugh is a mix of soft science and German metaphysics."  I feel that Parker was being seriously unfriendly; but I will accept his statement as flattering to me and definitely true.  I make no apology for "soft science"; and metaphysics is my aspiration.  Finally it remains to be said what the goals of this essay are.  A complete theory of society does not avoid, as theories unfortunately always seem to do, the relationship that society as a creation of man has with biology as a creation of nature.  Sociology does not commonly look at the foundation of society.  That foundation is biological.  The idea that concludes our statement is this:  The idea that society presents as its own subject and object, the so-called human species, is not at all science.  Homo sapiens is studied even by biological science without clearly descerning whether the entity talked about is fact or, on the other hand, a creation of moral philosophy.  Science is likely to be a product of society itself, and reflect social values, all the more in the so-called science of man, when man, precisely, is simply an ideal citizen and one who supports society in the face of nature.

First, it is said, man stands outside society "in nature."  This is where he began; but this nature was not a pleasant place.  Life there was "nasty, brutish and short," in the words of Hobbes.  But the state of nature was not to last forever.  Finally at some point in time, in a burst of understanding and inspiration, the human being "decides" to establish society.  The human for a moment stands still and reflects that he would be better off in something he spontaneously knows to be society.  Society magically appears at this precise moment in time.   The construction is a house, so to speak, which the human first builds and then enters.  There he is sheltered from the wild animals and forces of nature that tortured him in his previous life.  As we see, entering into society the human being is blessed with all sorts of advantages.  There is food and shelter.  Above all there is protection from humans of a preditory sort.   How, and on what terms, and whether this decision to build and enter society was a sudden or was gradual, are open questions.   I need not document the fact that this version of how human beings came to have society is central to any particular social theory in modern times.  Rousseau and Locke's social contract idea of society--that men voluntarily and for good reason entered society--can properly be called a "myth."   It is an idea whose origin is unclear but it was taken up by the communists and even Christians.   The implications of the idea are serious.  We understand that we must cherish society--it is fragile and hangs on a thin thread--and any disruption of this creation would be devastating.  The fear of losing society is perhaps what holds society together:  the consciousness that without it we would all be cast down into the abyss of raw nature.  This is something we have to be afraid of, it is said.   We need, in this view, above all to respect those few individuals who, by mysterious and solemn rituals, hold society together, in order that, in other words, we might not all perish.    The thought that society might perish through human thoughtlessness is the source of all morality, I suggest, and one that holds humans to a predictable, agreed upon course.  This course we call society.  The Social Contract is an idea of social origins that is several hundred years old; Philosophical Anthropology is more recent.  I suggest that the methods and basic concepts of PA suit it well to enter into any controversy over the origins of society and, because of new information available today--on apes, for instance and early hominid life--can rightfull take issue with the outdated concepts of Rousseau and Hobbes.  The Social Contract and Natural Law theories of society relate to a subject matter--ancient, pre-civilized life of human beings--that fall within the baliwick of Philosophical Anthropology.  This is a new discipline, one that has not so much new subject matter--since human origins have always been a subject of interest--but with new methods and general concepts.  I earlier talked about my own exposure to PA whose seminal work, Die Stellung des Menschen im Kosmos, by Max Scheler in 1930 antedated by own life by a mere ten years.  A major war involving Germany and America had to pass; but by the time I was twenty I was already planning to travel to Germany to begin my serious studies.  There is a long and tiresome story, which most do not want to hear, about how in my travels and even in my circumscribed life in Kentucky, Mississippi and Illinois I still managed to keep in touch with important Philosophical Anthropologists.  In Lexington at a convention on PA and Phenomenology I had a disappointingly short conversation with Helmuth Plessner (who wanted preferably to chat with some diminutive Hindu chap, a fact I have not forgotten) and Irwin Strauss, a Philosophical Anthropologist who was a refugee from Germany (I believe he was Jewish).  I mention these encounters because they reflect a commitment on my part to the agenda of Philosophical Anthropology.  I want to mention another important experience:  attendence at a lecture by the formidable Dr. D. Duke on the occasion of a memorial service for the late classics professor at University of Illinois, Revilo P. Oliver who was also an acquaintance of mine.  These were true friends, I have felt, and persons with whom I am ideologically compatible while, at the same time, thankful to my colleagues in PA.  Somehow, in the intellectual desolation of the Midwestern United States, rays of knowledge penetrated the gloom and kept me on track.  The story continues.  At one point in time, with my wife, I left the land of Ango-American empiricism to enter, for 14 months, what SE Parker has called the realm of "soft science and German metaphysics."   As I said before, here my alliance with Oliver and Duke did not serve me well;  the postwar climate of Germany was hypersensitivity to the old ideas, including Duehring (who is castigated as racist and antisemitic); I believe my own recent writings on a German webbsite have been deleted from their "cached" status by, probably, the German government itself as being "verfassungswidrig"--contrary to the modern German constitution. I was censored by this government!    But that is all water over the proverbial dam.   I believe with Spengler that philosophy springs inexorably from the land itself.  My land (heimat) is downstate Illinois where Philosophical Anthropology may or may not take root; but this is where I live and write.  Finally, at this late period of my life I came across the writings of Eugen Duehring, the German economist made famous through his disagreement with Friedrich Engles, the founder of modern socialism.  Duehring offered something he called Force Theory.  As for the theory itself, Duehring was not his own best advocate and his ideas at the time of first writing were sketchy.  I am borrowing his title FT but expanding on his otherwise incomplete ideas.  In his argument with Engels, Duehring was very much the loser.  In our present expanded version of Force Theory I will go head-to-head with Engels, I feel, on very much equal terms.  Engels as I said earlier is a worthy adversary and one to be respected; his statement on the transitions of society is of timeless importance.   What this argument is with Duehring I will shortly state.  But my emphasis is on the Social Contract theory of the origins of society.  At present it suffices to say that, as a theory of the origins of society, the Social Contract idea is deficient and in some points wrong.  The viewpoint submitted at present is that society began, as a matter of fact, with the first human technology.  This technics is an artificial creation that antedates, in fact, the enlarged human brain but provided pre-humans, anyway, a method of intimidating one another.  A simple stick waved by one man at another man, thereby inducing fear in the second man, constituted, by itself, society.  This is the "myth" of origin of updated Force Theory.   What remains is to see how humans "mitigated" this leveraged violence through contracts and agreements.  I discuss in this connection the "Rule of Thumb" and the significance of the handshake (to abjure weapons).   Finally,  I spoke earlier of "raw nature" which we are taught to fear; the word for this nature is "race."  Race represents in Force Theory the (Taoist) river which flows through reality and carries everything, including society, with it.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-04-28 14:09:22)

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

The first society was very small, I suggest, because the human species was very small.  The society that there was was for the species that there was.  A few people along with a few sticks and stones for artifacts was all that there was.  This a "homogeneous" society for a "homogeneous" group of people.  But there is more.  Society had the effect, even at a very primitive level, of locking humans and society together in a certain relationship that persists even today.  The basic relation between these two orders of being is the same relationship that we see in fully developed civilization.  The original tool was used for no purely material purpose--to turn over a stone or kill an animal--but to do precisely what it has come to do:  establish society as we know society to be.  The first idea of the stick or stone was to intimidate members of one's own familial group.  This same behavior is seen among chimpanzees, although it is not consistent as it is among humans.  We follow here the basic concepts and methods of Philosophical Anthropology as this discipline has developed since 1930.  Basic to PA is the idea that the elements of present day human life could have been seen, essentially, in the lives of the first people on earth.  If we are to understand man and society, then, we must consider these people.  We are not allowed to look at them directly since they are long passed.  We can imagine them, however.  In this regard--in looking at elemental human situations to envision complex ones--German anthropological philosophy departs from the metaphysics, prominently Hegel, of that nation.  Hegel begins with grand cosmic principles quite invisible but known only by intuition.  This is the Hegelian dialectic.  We aspire presently, in Force Theory (a version of PA) to arrive at a dialectical concept but one more closely related to the "dialectical materialism" of Friedrich Engels which does not so radically isolate principles from real situations.  In this Engels comes closer to what we understand "science" to be.  The German word Wissenschaft is rather vague; in English the word science has a more specific meaning, as suggested in the phrase "scientific method."  Still, with Engels there has been, as there frequently is, a confusion of scientific ideas and moralistic ones.  I want to comment in general.   Throughout the modern learned community there has evolved if not a cozy relationship then a comfortable one between science and moral philosophy.  This should be a relationship between competitors; it is more a relation between conspirators who agree to leave one another alone.  The two groups are highly tolerant of one another's weaknesses.  I have long pondered the actual tolerance that hard scientists (physicists and chemists, say) have with moral philosophers such as theologians and the preachy moralistic types that dominate universities.  We are aware of these different types of people.  The general view is that scientists can look after their hard facts and moralists can see to their grand principles, without either group interfering with the other.  I feel that they should interfere, however.  The general thought to emerge in these considerations is that scientists, in focusing on hard facts, actually blind themselves to the great pronouncements of theologians secular and religious.  At issue is what is meant by "fact" as opposed to "moral principle."  The positivist Carnap says that we cannot legitimately derive an idea of "should" from and idea of "is."  Facts do not lead to moral principles.  This is true.  Even so, the logical positivists for that precise reason do not intrude into the work of moralists.  Moral philosophies have virtually no limits as to what they can speculate; there are no facts to hold them down.  Fact-oriented thinkers or scientists on the other hand not only do not look to notions of "should" but look away from them.  One group, the scientists, is looking down; the other is looking up.  So they do not intrude into one another's space.  I have often observed that, assuming that moral ideas are still relevant to their personal lives and families, scientists are comfortable with the pronouncements of moralists.  This to me is all very interesting.  We will never see the moral order of humankind built upon facts.  No one seems to care.  But there is a further issue and one we will consider here.  I sense, from long personal involvement in the Philosophical Anthropology, that there is a discomfort throughout the length and breadth of the learned community with the principles of this discipline.  PA has never become popular even in Europe where it began; it is represented there only in a few courses, while the dominant philosophy is of the expatriate (mostly Jewish) positivists.  I mention also the role of Phenomenology, partly the work of the Jewish thinker Husserl as a movement most opposed to PA.  The path of PA has been difficult; now I see a reason.  PA is a discipline, while starting with certain facts--of upright posture say, and "ex-centric" thinking--has made an uninvited and unauthroized run into the territory of moral philosophy.  This invasion is on behalf of the idea of the "essence of man" (Wesensbegriff des Menschen) which is a biological fact with certain, we may say, moral pretentions.  I am confused myself with the pronouncements of earlier philosophical anthropologists such as Gehlen and Plessner as to whether their ideas are science or morals (the "science" of "should").  It seems to me that the ideas of PA do suggest a certain moral bias without being clear.  Certainly PA has taken up a position between science and moral philosophy where it, PA, has been able to push in both directions--into the sacred ground of science and the equally priviledged area of moral science alike.  PA in these terms would seem to have a rather aggressive stance and one that is likely to be unpopular.  The rules set down by empirical scientists and moral thinkers alike forbid the intrusion by the one into the territory of the other; this is the rule both are happy to live with.  PA transports facts that are decreed to belong in the realm of facts into the realm of morals and vice versa.  This is a highly unpopular--and actionable--instrusion.  The explicit political ideololgy of PA is rather liberal, certainly bland and uncontroversial.  It is rather, on the other hand, the purely learned pretentions of PA that cause it to be rejected.  This said--that we are in an unpopular area that does not respect established territory--we still continue our mission.

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

The open society requires an open man.  Philosophical Anthropology is comfortable with the basic assumptions of liberal academic ideology.  Gehlen, Plessner and Scheler, the main founders of this discipline, all stress the amenability of the human being to ideas of freedom.  The key word is "openness," whether this openness derives from a weakness of the human being or a special trait.   Gehlen proposes that the human being is a mangelwesen--creature of deficiency--who must complete himself through culture.  Plessner says that the quality of humanness consists of an ex-centric, or detached, point of view.  Scheler calls the human being weltoffen, or "open to the world."  These are all views of Philosophical Anthropologists and ones that have secured them in German universities before and after the Fascist period.  There is no suggestion in any of these characterizations of the human being of resistance to precepts of modern political institutions.   Force Theory, as what might be called a sort of "generic fascism" might, if linked with PA, change that.  In the meantime, however, while we understand the mere survival of PA we also are surprised by its low rank among philosophies that there are.  German universities are dominated by expatriot philosophies of Adorno and Marcuse as "New Left" ideologies.  I have already provided some answer to this issue.  The real threat from PA results not from its conception of man, as such, or its compatibility with liberal ideologies but with its failure to restrain itself within certain boundaries set by academic divisions themselves.  Empiricists abide within their own realm; moral philosophers--Adorno and Marcuse were essentially ethical theorists--did the same.  Neither group troubled the other because the fences between them were clearly visible.  No fact-oriented person was going to intrude (so the rule went) into the realm of the "should"-oriented thinker.  And so this tradition of separation passed from generation to generation primarily within the universities.   PA with its conception of the "essence of man" posed the threat of intrusion into both established territories.  The "essence" idea was suspiciously ambiguous as to whether it pretended something factual or something ethical.  There was the threat in the idea of an "essence" of a foray into the territory of either fact or "the good," where it was not welcome.  Above all PA constituted the possibility that facts would be tracked into the realm of the good and the good would be secreted into the realm of facts.  In short, PA was "inappropriate."  It brought disdain from the fact people and the moralists both.  We may try to draw this issue out further.  There was first and foremost a lack of clarification on the issue as to whether the human being "is" something or "should be" something; whether the essence of man compelled the man to act to be that something.  The policy of the university was to contain PA to one or two courses and then--keep it from spreading.  While New Left ideology spread to America (like many other bad ideas have spread here) PA did not cross the ocean.  When I was a student in the 60s and 70s, PA was confined to a few courses, as I say, in a few universities.  A triadal structure exists with its three points being the idea of the moral good; the hard fact; and finally the amenability of the human being to democracy.  We are inclined to assume that modern social institutions bring these three things together into a single concept; nothing could be further from the truth.   The existence of democracy depends on keeping them apart.  Thus Philosophical Anthropology, in being a synthetic discipline, intrudes as a decided disruption of the structure.  Finally, the methods and concepts of PA have contributed if nowhere else, than in the present essay, to a point of view that is assertive both as to facts and as to moral principles; but one that comes not with a liberalistic bias but with, as I have described it, a certain "generically fascist" point view.  I am talking about the Force Theory concept, within PA, of society as being constituted essentially by slavery.   The position here is that man's release from nature--his freedom from instincts and his reliance on the open possibilities of his intelligence--has been essentially closed through his own predilection against freedom.   In the New Force view, bolstered by Philosophical Anthropology, society began as, in the first instance, unilateral slavery and continues as bilateral or mutual slavery.  This relationship among humans came about through the agency of the tool, or our proverbial "stick."  Eugen Duhring, from whom I have taken the word Force Theory, puts it this way:  "The relation between general politics and the forms of economic law is determined in so definite and at the same time so original a way that it would not be superfluous, in order to facilitate study, to make special reference to this point. The formation of political relationships is, historically, the fundamental fact, and the economic conditions dependent on this are only an effect or a particular case, and are consequently always facts of the second order." [cite]     I have said the slave completes the stick.  That is true. The slave provides generality to the specificity of the stick.  But this is only in service of a general human being.  There is no society without slavery; humans have been driven to end slavery only by providing new layers of slavery to offset the old.  Marriage is a case in point.  The ownership by a man of a woman is offset by the ownership by the woman of that same man.

Modern society--essentially, democracy--comes about as slaves take possession of their own masters as slaves.  This act does not end slavery, on the contrary, it strengthens it.  The word we can use for democracy is bilateral or mutual slavery.  We begin with marriage.  Marriage begins with the leveraged intimidation by the male of the female.  This unilateral slavery is made possible through the "authority of the stick," symbolized even today in some places as the staff or rod of the king.   The woman for her part was not a technician and had no understanding; she was simply mesmerized as the male waved a stick in her face.  The male was master, the woman was a slave.  This relationship was short-lived, however.  I talked earlier of consent.  Black's Law Dictionary says that  if a person consents to an act upons his or her person, such act cannot be considered criminal.  This is an important principle of law and it is important here.  Marriage decriminalizes the use of leveraged force in the relationship between a man and woman, not by suspending use of a stick but by establishing an ownership by the woman of the man, her husband.  The "rule of thumb" applies:  the man shall not strike his wife with a large object.   But how does the woman accomplish this ownership?  First by resisting as opposed to consenting.  Even an armed man in relation to a physically weaker woman begins to weary;  he would only destroy his wife by hitting her.  Then he consents to becoming, himself, a slave to her.  But what is the weapon the woman holds?  I suggest that her weapon is the contract which basically is simply the witness--and the disposition of likewise armed males in her group--that she has "rights" in relation to her husband.  Indirectly the woman appeals for support to the other armed men that there are in her group; these have a coercive effect on her husband.   This is all there is to marriage, or what I have called "the rule of the thumb."  This is all there is to contracts, which are agreements that are witnessed and enforced by the group at large.  In the contract the narrowly armed person has to answer, finally, to the generally armed group.  The male in marriage is cocerced or forced by the group in general.  In the evolution of complex human relations this simple thread can be seen:  the specific relationship, because it is first of all lopsidedly leveraged, is resolved into a general relationship on the legal and cultural terms of the whole group.  Now there are rules and laws that are constituted through the general entity that is generally armed and potentially violent.  The individual plight of the woman in the face of her armed husband evokes finally the general reaction of the whole armed group.  What is a private and personal feeling parlays itself, through language and technology and the symbols of culture, into something that the entire group is.  There is a difference between the individual and the group.  While the particular individual is focused upon the individual whom he intends to slave, the generality of humans, while armed and leveraged, for its part needs laws and general principles to guide this group.  This point concludes, then, Force Theory's summary of the evolution of society.   A lesson is learned from Philosophical Anthropology.  That lesson is that general principles follow out of simple situations which, though now ancient history, and are also concrete and material rather than abstract, were present in the lives of much smaller and earlier groups.  The dialectic, or creative opposition, of forces appear as simple and concrete instances before these resolve themselves, through conflict, into the so-called universal principles so buried and obscure in modern civilization.  The expression "nothing new under the sun" applies here.  I spoke earlier of Philosophical Anthropology as leading the way in this new perspective.  Sociology--and as an anthropologist living among sociologists I have had to defer to this field--focus first on the large issues of a large civilization.  Students themselves, it appeared, are mesmerized by the pure grand scope of sociology and are bored with the small perspective of anthropology.  Anthropologists themselves, focused as they are on so-called facts that are infinitessimally small, seem to disappear in their own facts.  They are blind to the essentially "moral" vision of their colleagues.  This is a relationship that could exist only within academia. Again, as I said of the relation between moralists and empiricists, these are people who should be adversaries and enemies; instead they are political friends who conspire to stay out of one another's territory.   After considerable frustration I now see the point--and the utter political futility--of Philosophical Anthropology.  Finally, then, there is a last point to be made regarding the evolution of society.  Armed men faced each other with the potential for leveraged--and mutually destructive--violence.  This was likely essentially a standoff punctuated by sporadic waring.  Force Theory proposes that what ultimately has come to be known as cooperation was a way to resolve the stalemate of bilateral arms.  Men could not fight--the fight would destroy everyone--so they turned to cooperation.  On this point--of cooperation--Force Theory opposes the other theories, communistic and so forth, that there are.  Engels' view is that humans are "naturally" cooperative but get sidetracked through violence.  Force Theory takes the opposite view that, in a standoff of armed men, the only way to resolve the standoff is to cooperate.   Cooperation in these terms consists of turning technology--and "technical" ways of interacting (making humans a part of their own technics)--toward so-called practical objectives.   This was never the human's original intention.  His only intention, at first, was to dominate another human being through the stick or (symbolically) the rod. Men who faced each other with sticks, on the other hand, whiled away the time hunting and farming with those same sticks.  Of course there were sports.  Sports--hitting a ball with a stick--may have provided a transition between the stalemate of armed men and, on the other hand, domestically "appropriate" activities of hunting and farming.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-05-01 14:20:48)

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

Food, shelter and a few creature comforts are what a human being works for.  These are his "needs" and the focus of his life.  Such is the assumption of Engels and the "materialist" philosophers.  There is no reason to challenge Engels for making the bare physical needs basic to human life; that is why they are called necessities.  It has been said before, however, that food and shelter and shallow entertainment are not all that is basic to human life.  I would stop short of saying humans have "intellectual" needs, since most do not.  What humans do have is a desire for social status, something animals fight for with teeth an claws but which in the case of humans are achieved, or were first achieved, by the mere waving of a stick.  This is where society comes from:  a use of tools to raise one's status within his social group.  Where Engels is mistaken, we say, is in deriving society as the most general human relationship from this need gratification in the simplest terms.  The human being is materialistic; but his society does not derive directly from his materialism.  It would make as much sense to say that status and such vague but powerful motives as honor would be the source of society.   Engels goes too far in making "materialism" the motive and cause of society.  I should not single out Engels for criticism:  the capitalist apologists say the same thing--that primitive needs are basic--but add what is obviously true, that property and acquisitions raise social status.  This too is not what we are talking about in Force Theory.   We are suggesting here that society originates rather out of an impulse that is not materialistic in the narrow sense of the word materialism but relates, rather, to the human inclination for status and interpersonal dominance.  What exists as inclinations of dominance and submission among animals in general, then, even among birds and mice, are in the case of human beings leveraged through technology.  We say the materialist notion of society does not go far enough.   Because materialism has so long been defined in a narrow way we must, finally, simply distance ourselves from this idea.  What human beings aspire to do, is to dominate one another by threatening them with sticks and stones, essentially, or whatever is at hand by way of intimidating technics.     With these technics, of course, come all the rules as to how to use these sticks and stones.  Society consists first of the use of tools (because "use" is the human side of technics) and then a multitude of other behaviors, all unique to the human species, as to how to use--and disguise--them.   I spoke earlier of the idea basic to Philosophical Anthropology that simple and primitive human situations show relatively clearly certain basic motives present in the modern day; and show, too, how these motives play out in human interaction.  The motives may be buried under layers of customs and habits that have been built up over time by multitudes of people.  The principle is the same.  We do not need to construe society differently today than society has always been.  We see clearly that the materialist philosophy of human history is deficient on account of its limited or partial view of human motives.  This is a discussion that should not be taking place here for the first time.  Important issues are raised presently about certain politics of the sapientes, or wise men of the universities.  I believe the people most competent to pronouce on these important issues have sequestered themselves, as they have been reputed to do, in ivory towers.  What an ivory tower means for our purposes is a place where, whatever meaningful goes on within it--and there is much that is meaningful--the tower exists not so much to promote ideas as to defend them.  The idea behind the ivory tower is that the sacred wisdom of professors is vulnerable to attack.   Professors--my colleagues-- have so far avoided the internet and prefer to rest their reputions on books they have published and sequestered in libraries.  The library enshrines the works of professors; but it also insulates them from unwanted exposure.  The irony is that the most intelligent people are not doing what the average humans are doing--joining the internet.  Philosophy forums, likewise, seem to attract average minds rather than the best.  Professors are protective of their reputations; they do not take risks.  Salaries and reputations (among their own kind) are at stake  The internet should change this.   For my own part, I live on the internet as an exile from my original homeland, which was the university.  There is nothing for me there now.  No academic press will look at my modest book on Philosophical Anthropology; I have stopped trying.  There is freedom on the internet but, perhaps, until later, no one to seriously talk with.  I feel that I should be talking with other professors; I am not doing that.  But this is all whining that I want to avoid.  I am saying something very simple.  There should be an open discussion here and now, given the freedom of the internet; but the professors think perhaps this would cheapen their work.  Full disclosure of ideas would also open them to unwanted attack; colleagues would turn upon colleagues with easy criticisms.   Again I raise a point about Philosophical Anthropology, that it is not so much advanced in the German university (and nowhere else) as it is sequestored there and rendered impotent.  The internet would seem to raise the possibility that PA could easily cross the ocean and begin here, in America, a serious debate.  So far this has not happened.    Finally, to conclude this paragraph, we are saying that technics are not so much purposefully used to make a mere living, provide the simple necessities, as they are used by humans to intimidate one other.  But this purpose tends to be highly disguised.  Humans pretend to use tools for a practical purpose, and so distract one another from the fact that, essentially, the tools still threaten one another.

First there were just two humans and, between them, a stick.  The stick allowed one man to be master, of course, and the other to be slave.  But more than that, the stick compelled the men to be--and to remain--Homo sapiens.  The relations between the men were very simple, based as they were on the violence of this one artifact.  There is something else we need to talk about here.  That is,  there was then only one race--the human race.  These two men plus their wives and children were all there were to the species Homo sapiens.  Four or five beings constitute only a species, we may say, but have no room among them for several races.    The species was itself a race, of course, emerging out of some other species; but for our purposes the race, defined by the technology that set it apart from other races, was the species that was to be.  The human species was at that time what may be reasonably called the human race.  This race, the human race, was also the future species; but the relations among members of the group, though they were few, were unlike relations within other groups.  These were relations of technological prowess.  Apes fight each other for group dominance; but they do not hit or threaten to use sticks and stones to hit one another in this fight--humans do.   Thus far we have looked at the beginnings of humanity, when humanity was the species Homo sapiens and when the species Homo sapiens was the human race.  These considerations can be set against a background of similar anthropological speculation.  In the conventional view, culture changes allow the human being to remain human.  By giving humans new possibilities for adaptation, their species itself does not have to change.  We accept this general statement as true.  What is less obvious, however, is that such a release from evolutionary ebb and flow is replaced by a new constraint.  Culture not only allows the release from evolution, it acts to stop such evolution altogether.  We have talked extensively about this confinement and restriction through culture and artifacts.  As the tool is shaped, so the human species is formed.  This may be our aphoristic expression.  The stick forces humans to be just that, human.  I spoke earlier of the profile of humans to be either masters or slaves.  These traits define the human species, not only, but retard evolutionary development.  The first relationship, a triadal one as I said, defined the species; and that species is the species that exists today as foundation for the complex structures of civilization that there are.  I mentioned the role of Philosophical Anthropology in coming to this conclusion.  This new discipline, which distinguished itself not just as a body of factual material--which existed long before PA--but as a program for investigation, can be understood against a background of "biological philosophy" that ran through German intellectual history.  Vitalism, of course, as proposed by among others Hans Drietsch, developed further as the "organic" philosophy of history of Oswald Spengler.   There are too many names to mention.  Vitalism sought to introduce a notion of "force" into biology, now the force of arms alluded to here as the basis of social relations, but a power in nature.  Such vitalism was the bane of Friedrich Engels who sought to steer German philosophy toward English "materialism."  To relate all the issues that there were would detract us from our main purpose.  When I studied in Germany in 1965-6 [exact date?] the postwar mentality of that country, and the uncertainty within the university regarding the general German political climate and direction, Philosophical Anthropology was making small and tentative forays in the directions both of Darwin and, on the other hand, the vitalistic biologists, such as --- of that period.   The very word race was at that time proscribed.   Nowhere in the works of Gehlen, Scheler and Bullnow does the word race appear.  Fundamental to the vitalistic theory, revived and renovated under the title Force Theory, is the idea of race as the most immediate expression of the creative power in nature.  Race is what is becoming; the species--and the species Homo sapiens too--has become.  The species is decadent.  I want to clarify the source of possible (really, most certain) misunderstanding:  we are not talking here of "racial superiority" or even "racial differences" as such.  This is the material of garden variety racism that we encounter here and there.   We mean something different.  To contrast races in terms of their different and distinctive traits (we affirm that these differences do exist) is not what we suggest in Force Theory, rather, simply, the directions which different groups are progressing evolutionarily.  Thus what distiguishes black from white groups is their direction in evolution.  They are passing "like ships in the night," to use an old but appropriate expression.  Black and white can never be reconciled because they are separated by the tracks they are taking.  These separate directions are the creative moves of biological nature and ones which bring about new species.  We still must however reckon with society and culture:  these are forces that humans impose upon themselves which attempt to deter the creative ebb and flow (the River of LeoTse) of nature.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-05-03 13:51:35)

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

In Rousseau and Hobbes' view, man was suddenly intelligent enough to perceive that living in a state of nature was no longer in his interests; he therefore decided to enter into a state of man, which we call society.   There was a certain loss of freedom in making this decision; but there were also benefits in doing so; escape from the violence of nature was a main consideration.    I emphasize that these Social Contract thinkers saw the earlier life of human beings as fraught with agression wherein man assaulted man.  The primary motive in entering society, then, was that here such violence was abjured; humans would live in peace and not  fear one another.  We may note that this view sounds naive; violence continues today and will always continue.  But there was a more serious mistake, we suggest, in assuming society is inherently a non-violent relationship.    The contrary is true.  Human beings, we are saying, are no less violent,  or nonviolent for that matter, within society than they are outside society.  It is the nature of violence within society--that producing slavery--that distinguishes human from animal life.  Violence is no more or less intense in society; but in society the violence is leveraged.  Apes are violent, so are humans; but humans hit each other with sticks, apes do not, and that is the difference between an apelike state of nature and human society.    What is different about human beings is that humans have tools as weapons; again other animals do not.  Force Theory takes a stand in this matter.  For FT, society in fact represents a certain kind of violence that came into being with technology--technological violence.  We are saying that the first tool, as we call it, was for no peaceful purpose, on the contrary it was used as a weapon.  If the weapon did not kill a human victim, then that person was made a "slave."  Slavery became an established way of life that has never been overturned.  If we assume society is a relationship of peace and freedom from violence we are making a serious mistake as to the essential nature of society; every particular statement regarding this institution is likely to be mistaken on account of its false context.  We are making no claim about so-called "human nature," whether that nature is violent or non-violent; we are rather making a claim about the nature of violence within society and outside of society.  To repeat what I just have said:  outside of society, "in nature," fights are with teeth and claws and the natural abilities of an individual; outside nature, in society, fighting is leveraged with sticks and stones.  These statements derive from Philosophical Anthropology as reworked by Force Theory.  Natural law philosophers had the same subject matter as FT, essentially, but imposed certain ideals and values on this speculation; their methods were flawed.  They aspired to build new democratic institutions and establish, once and for all, an ideal relationship between leaders and followers.  As I say, their theory was flawed.  Philosophical Anthropology was long in coming; and even today no final conclusions have been drawn as to correct institutions.  There is confusion and controversy, even, regarding the central ideas of PA--that of a so-called "essence of man"--whether this is a fact or value.  These and other considerations force us to reconsider the main points of traditional social philosophy--by which I mean not only Rousseau but Engels and the communists.  We say, under the banner of Force Theory, that the essential nature of society is indeed slavery, enforced by the tool, or as we say "the authority of the stick."  But there is more.  Slavery endures into modern times as a real institution--Africa is still an example--but, more importantly, as a threat.  The threat of enslavement through the leveraged violence of weapons drives people, even where no "traditional" slavery exists, such as the cocobean fields of West Africa, to predicate their relationships on the mere threat of slavery.  Society begins with unilateral slavery, with a clear master and a clear slave, and proceeds to bilateral or mutual slavery. 

The person who was first the slave, forced into this condition through the threat of weapons, may take possession of his or her master through a certain "symbolic" ownership.  This is what a contract is.  The contract itself is force, but it is force diffused throughout the entire society.  The contract enlists support from men who are likewise armed and ready for violence.  But their violence in this case is focused on the master, that, namely, he treat his slave in a respectful way.  The master, because there are other armed men close by other than he, himself becomes subject to the force of arms.  This relationship, when it is between a man and woman, is the essence of marriage.  Society in a very general way is a continuation of the ancient idea of servitude, not by abandoning forced servitude, but by balancing one man's weapons against others in complex political relationships.  Having said that, we must also remark that slavery as the absolute condition of mastery by one man over another still exists and always has existed.   Human beings have always practiced slavery.  It is remarkable that Engels never dwells on the issue of slavery.   There was slavery by the Vikings in the prefeudal period of Europe; there was slavery in the classical civilizations of Greece, Rome and China.  Slavery springs up in one form or other.  Slavery was a common form of punishment for crimes or debts, and even kings could be subjected to it, a fact of Babylonia and Sumer.   The "modern" or democratic societies that appear now and then are simply, in a way of speaking, pockets or sequestered institutions of mutuality surrounded, commonly, by great areas of hard, unilateral slavery.  Democratic institutions of Greece and Rome were achieved among smaller groups of men, similarly armed and in a physical standoff with one another; here agreements and contracts served simply to institutionalize this standoff and call it statis quo.  Of course, progress in machines both as weapons and producers of consumer goods has had a great effect in human relationships, wherein--and particularly we are talking about enslavement precisely to produce consumer goods--the slave has become obsolescent.  Finally, with a larger group of free (but essentially armed) men the element of contract has become more prominent in forming society.   A contract in these terms is simply a recognition of equal strength and an agreement not to fight.  I talked about agreements and contracts in an earlier section. 

Society as leveraged violence, a relationship formed with the first human beings whatsoever, has a singleminded purpose.  That purpose is to enforce the species character--the slave character, essentially--of the human being; and at the same time thward the race character.  Society is an institution solely of the human species as a species.  Our considerations so far have been very general.  Where Force Theory is presently lacking is any sort of compelling analysis of present day human relationships, an area where Engels was particularly brilliant.  We must defer to him and, finally, emulate him.  We must provide an idea of modern society that is not necessarily truer than Engels', but one that is just as good (!).   One, that is, that is just as satisfying.   Engels, following Lewis Morgan, has provided a very convincing account of the transition from feudal to capitalistic society.   Communist theory has dealt less with ancient man and more with the historical basis of modern society; the two ideologies have not yet faced each other squarely on ancient versus modern society.  In fact, FT acknowledges the great accomplishment of Morgan and Engels.  Also in Force Theory there is no economic philosophy--yet.  What I plan in this paragraph is to suggest a possible relaltion between the specific phases of economic history and, on the other hand, the tension that I have talked about earlier, between the species and the race.  Human beings assert themselves to express their individual and race character; we are making the very sweeping statement that phases of the economic system, say from feudalism to capitalism can be thought of as a struggle, in fact, between the principle of species and the principle of race.  Goods of consumption have transitioned from individual and racial goods to species goods.  The goods of the feudal period were made to individual tastes and expressed racial character.  Mass production that replaced the feudal workshop also replaced individual goods with goods more appealing to a generic or mass human being.  These are considerations I will take up shortly.

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

Eugen Duhring in reflecting on Robinson Crusoe presents a "myth" of the origins of society.   He depicts two men on an island, one enslaving the other.  I have not lately read Robinson Crusoe, but must say, too, Duhring's run at the subject of man and society begins as ours does.  What the present Force Theory proposes is that, as in the Crusoe story, there are two men together where one manages, by holding (not a sword but...) a stick, to enslave the other.  This may have been a single event ushering in the era of man; or this scenario may have appeared more or less gradually, developing in stages throughout the paleolithic period.  Anyway, this--the two men together--is our "myth."  Engels mocks Duhring's small tale of Carusoe but in doing so misses the point.  Engels asks, what is Carusoe's motive in enslaving Friday?   Because Crusoe has to support Friday as well as himself,  Engels finds no economic or material advantage to Crusoe in doing so.  What we are saying here, in Force Theory as begun by Duhring, that thre need be no economic motive or consequence at all; the relationship between Crusoe and Friday is one simply of dominance and submission, an ancient animal disposition to build a hierarchy.  The so-called economics of a given human  relationship simply confuses the issue:  dominance and submission, on the other hand, is a simpler explanation and that is a fact of human life everywhere.   Here Force Theory breaks from Engels' idealistic fantasy of men everywhere desiring simple cooperation.  We do not evoke competition, either, as an important motive; we say only the the human being strives for rank order in his group.  What follows out of this hierarchy--whether the order becomes an order with a material or objective cooperative, practical purpose--is another question.  It may or may not be some material (economic) advantage.  We look again at the relation between Crusoe and Friday.  We see clearly the fact of dominance and submission.    But there is more.  Such dominance and submission is not precisely that between animals.  We are talking here about something unique to human beings.   What distinguishes Crusoe's case from animals is the fact, simply, that he had a sword rather than just bare hands to accomplish his mastery.  Crusoe, like the first humans, was not an economic theorist.  Nor was food and material things first on his minds.    Some human societies, such as those of Africa, are nothing but pecking orders with little or no material strategy or support.  We see kings lording over starving subjects.  White people are not really different; simply, their order is adapted, secondarily we are saying, to a material coordinated, cooperative effort.  But this effort does not account for the way society originally appeared or has become.    This is what happened--the mastery of one man over another--in the first encounter wherein a stick was used as weapon.   This was a formative event in human existence and one that set the course of human history forever.  Engels' vision of human nature was quite at odds with the view of Duhring.  Engels saw humans as occupied first by the simplest of material needs and, we may had, the most shallow of entertainment.  But Engels was wrong. Still today, economics and so many pots and pans and chickens in the oven are not what concern humans generally.  The "myth" that we are presenting, rather, and the one that accounts for human character, is strife towards high social rank order.  But there is more.  Such strife, against the background of human technology and weaponry, constitutes a new problem in nature:  how to keep humans from using this weaponry for what would be mass destruction.  Thus we see the rise of contracts and agreements in human relationships.  .

As a social being the human being acts to keep his species supportive of his society.  The basic human effort is to keep human beings where they were and how they were at that first encounter that was mediated by the stick as weapon of enslavement.  The human species is now confined to its role that was set by primal slavery in the paleolithic period.  Oppression is a favorite word among Engels' communists; we will use it here.   Human oppression means to keep humans what they always were, simply human.  The human being, in a relationship mediated by society, is oppressed by his own species.  Society is the agent or tool whereby humans are imprisoned in their own species.  The satisfactions that they have are only species ones.  Animals are different in this.  Animals are the way they are without being forced to be so; that is not the case with humans.  Social oppression means first and foremost to that humans are coerced simply to remain as they always are, a species amenable to slavery.  Society aspires to this end not only in its creation and use of weaponry, but in the very economic processes that pretend to be "practical":  thus consumer goods themselves enforce, indirectly, a certain species character that confines the human being to the species Homo sapiens.  A topic that will be treated at greater length is economic evolution, the topic of Engels.  Here it must suffice to say that the so-called means of production and exchange work as they do only on the assumption that they work through and around human beings as the species Homo sapiens.  The economics of Force Theory refer directly to species needs and race needs.  The larger society and its supporting economy becomes, the closer goods conform to the species standard:  universality and triviality.  Tempting as it is for the consumer to break beyond this mold, the fact is that any disruption of the sort that brings down the economy brings down the society with it.   The double burden that human beings bear is that the species Homo sapiens is the standard for all behavior and thought.    Humans could live without the species, they think, but they could not live without society.  Through its human agents and representativces, therefore,  society decrees that humans will not evolve further or higher than they are;  to evolve to a higher level would negate society itself as an institution of slavery. "Humanity" is a finished product for all times; the human species remains, as a social entity, just that--Homo sapiens.   Human beings are virtually forced to be human, something contrary to what they are, as the race appears, willingly.  This is all society has accomlished.  Where humans pass beyond the human species--in their racial evolution--society stands as a gatekeeper to keep them within their former confines.  The human species, as a species, is a prison; it is a prison established by society.  We may say this without exaggeration.   I spoke of the destructive effects of race upon the species, and how the race supplants the species as a biological form.  This is next topic in this forum.

The stick completes the man; the slave completes the stick.  This is the primal fact upon which Force Theory is based.  This "myth" of the origins of society may be a fact, indeed, or it may be merely a premise for a broader theory.  Either way, we face a mass of confused material when we come to the question of modern society:  what is it?   I am satisfied with Engels statement in his work Socialism.  Engels speaks in a thorough way about the relation between social institutions, such as the feudal clan, and institutions such as the small workshop which was the basis of the feudal economy.  He speaks with authority on the destructive effects upon these institutions by large-scale division of labor, manufacturing and finally machine technics.  We do not feel compelled to offer anything better under the banner of Force Theory.  Where Engels was wrong, we say, was in assuming there is anything real that conforms to his idea of "humanity" and "mankind."  If there is no goal to human effort then, or no real value system that would lead humans in a definite direction, then the end of human effort, or communism, is pointless.  Communism is a moral viewpoint whose end or goal is humanity.  But humanity does not exist.  We may talk about this further.   In the idea of humanity, formal economic analysis, such as Engels so brilliantly carried out, meets Philosophical Anthropology.  It is critical to know whether this humanity Engels talks about is already, by itself, a creation of society; or whether, on the other hand, humanity is biologically real.     We are saying that when Engels says that "mankind" aspires to a universal economy and society commensurate with these things, he was simply wrong.  By humanity he meant some moral purpose or goal which, for our part here, does not exist in the real world.   No such thing can be found.  If we say on the other hand that all that is meant by humanity is simply Homo sapiens, a static or finished biological form, then the conclusion is obvious: an economy that serves one member of the species would serve all members.  But Engels would be wrong in one important point:  society began in slavery; society would not have completed its agenda or mission until every Homo sapiens was enslaved.  Any thought of "freedom" or the "brotherhood of man" would be out of the question.  The idea of humanity was established, we are saying, in the first social act whatsoever, when one man "enslaved" another by using a stick.

If the slave completes the stick, as we say he does, then it is also true that a stick would extend the work of the slave.  The mastery that the master has would likewise be extended.   The thought of mastery is the guiding thought of the economy; the economy begins with the master's desire to satisfy himself, selfishly.  But the master must also support the slave.  This consideration was raised by Duhring and Engels, both, in their argument regarding Crusoe and Friday.  Engels dwells on the pure practicality of Crusoe having to support Friday, another man whose needs are almost as great as Crusoe's own.  At this point--where the needs of both men are considered--society as a simple agent of (through technics) leveraged dominance becomes a more purely economic question.  That is, now we are thinking not directly about the need of one man to dominate another, so much as the question of the dominant man regarding pure subsistance of both men and the viability of the whole system.  The master is now thinking, not of how he will keep the slave in line and doing his job, but of how he will support the slave and himself.  As I said before, there is no issue here of "mehrwert" or surplus value, as Marx identified that issue.  The overriding thought by the master was of the means to subdue his slave; but once this problem is sloved, an issue on a secondary level is how to provide for both.  Here we enter the domain of economics as this field is construed by modern economists.  For these specialists the focus is on ways and means to grow food, say, or make pots and pans.  The modern economy of the world is huge.  In such a complex structure there would be no way of knowing who is dominating--or has the advantage over--whom.  Conventional economics, whether it be biased towards free market trade or communism, does not even raise the issue.  Human beings are now locked into their system by simple physical need.  What restrains and contains human beings is the fact that they need certain goods and they must cooperate with one another to get these things.  It would almost appear that the beginnings of society, in the relation between the man with the stick and the man without one, is irrelevant.  The master's tool has developed into tools for the "slaves" and the terms of ownership, or contracts, dominate those who would in a simpler place and time be masters. 

In the beginning of time, when we start our story, the master was simultaneously a race-person and a species-person.  He contained within him both the will to surpass himself and the desire to stay the same.  All these threads of personality were contained within one man.  But as the person who was creative and self-serving the race principle began, within him, to emerge as dominant.  In the slave, Friday, on the other hand, the creative urge began to sink and was replaced entirely by Friday's species side.  This was the story of Robinson Crusoe and Friday, or essentially the first humans on earth.    There were only two people who were both the race and the species.  The master was the assertive person; through assertion he expressed the racial idea of "becoming."    The race is assertive; the species on the other hand is passive and submissive.  We may think of Friday, the slave, as acquiescing, whether through fear of force or for some other reason.  In the beginning, the race principle was strongly emerging as the master was clearly and authoritatively showing mastery, if only by beating his slave.  Here is where biological nature in general was "becoming," producing new and creative forms.  There was only one person asserting himself, and he was the race.  The effect of culture, on the other hand, was to distribute the authority of the master to persons who were now multiplying themselves as social beings.  Slaves increased in numbers, and their needs increased.  Technology was diverted from its original intended purpose, which was simply to subdue someone as slave, to the problem, merely, of providing food and consumer goods for slaves.  When the slave has a stick, we may say, though that stick was first to extend the slavery of the slave, the slave will turn the stick against the master.  Society became at this time an entity constituted by contracts, which are agreed-upon statements containing the threat of physical leveraged force.

[technology ostensibly for practical purposes are actually, in original intent, for purposes of subjugation.  how machines do not liberate persons from work but harness them to it.  it was never the purpose of society, as we construe the word society, to "free" human beings, only to restrict them.  but this point must be proven here]

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-05-06 14:43:15)

Re: 34. FORCE THEORY AND PHILOSOPHICAL ANTHROPOLOGY: RECENT THINKING

Mastery is our present topic.  What it is and what its purpose is we shall shortly say.  Meanwhile we must emphasize certain main topics developed here.  Society in its basic structure--and that structure is all we are concerned with here--was in place when a man first beat another man, or threatened to beat him, with a stick.   An order was mediated by "authority of the stick" that endures to this day.  All society is today is mediated--leveraged through some artifice--violence in which some persons rise and others sink.  This was and still is a ranking that animals do not have; because, obviously, animals do not use sticks to coerce behavior of one another.  Of course there is another side to technology and one which economists tend to focus on exclusively, on the grounds that technics serve primarily a benign purpose.  This should not confuse us here.   It is true that the order that once oppressed primal humans could be turned in modern times to so-called "practical" activities; this was an afterthought and one with differing results among different demographic and racial groups.   There was obviously a practical thought behind the division of labor which appeared in Europe to begin the industrial revolution.  But these practical results--practical in that they provided all the foods and pots and pans that Engels dreamed every man would have--were slow in coming and were of secondary importance beside the effect of tools and technology in subordinating humans to one another.  Engels quotes Marx in saying that the instruments of production serve under capitalism simply to oppress the masses of people; people have become enslaved by their machines.  This is true.  Engels speaks of instruments of warfare but only as a diversion from "materialist" or consumer-oriented production.  We would that through the technics of war  the tool (now called the weapon) shows its true purpose.  Industrialism whether under capitalism or communism did not change this violent mentality even as tools transitioned to machines.  The oppression grew stronger.   Meanwhile, on the other hand, humans lived among themselves relatively peacefully, in fact, insofar as they reached agreements regarding the use of technics in relationships (example that I use frequently, the "rule of thumb").  In all the technical exertion, however, there has been only one overwhelming objective, that is to achieve "mastery."  What mastery is and what its purpose or objective is we shall shortly say.

The purpose that a master has in being master is to develop and enhance his own mastery.  I think the whole issue is mostly lost in the imponderable facts of biology and instinct.  Animals (I've already spoken of a certain "baboon fascism" that seems to exist throughout the animal realm) aspire to a mastery; but these aspirations are limited to what the individual being can muster by way of teeth, claws, strength and just charismatic bluff.  Humans carry out their agenda of mastery by means first of technology; this is the way it was in the paleolithic period as the ancestral human picked up a stick and used it to beat, or threaten to beat, another man (or woman).  An important point is raised here and one that is central to Force Theory.  The human being can extend his mastery only by extending his technical force.   The quest for power now depends on intelligence; but particularly it depends on intelligence regarding technology and what surrounds technics, the entire strategy of domination through cooperation with humans who are likewise armed.  Few opportunities exist to rise in dominance by developing personal attributes, such as strength and personal charisma.  The only possibilities are in fact in the technics of leveraging force; and these technics include rendering one's personal slaves more formidable in opposition to the slaves of another master.   They must be better armed.  The Pretorian Guard were the bodyguards of the Roman emporer; they were fierce and loyal in that capacity.  But they came to be stronger than the king.  Roman kings repeatedly tried to disband them; they would not be disbanded.  There is a point to be made about slavery--in the end the effort is self-defeating.  This differs from small groups to large ones.  In small groups there is a definite order of individual ranking.  In large societies, "democracies" so-called, the force and violence is still present in relationships; the force simply has no order or predictability.  Force Theory as a "generically fascist" ideology proposes a society with a definite order of force--force being an inescapable fact of life.   

In human life, peacekeeping is essential; and peace depends upon agreements that are based on trust and agreements which are enforced by contract.  But the overall principle remains valid.  That is, ultimately--because the slave completes the stick that completes the individual arm--the master can extend and enhance his mastery only through his slaves, by ensuring that they are useful and effective slaves.  There are words we could use other than "slave."   But there is more.  The mastery of the master is extended and enhanced insofar as the technics in the hands of slaves or servants is extended.  The authority of the master, at first limited and dwarfish, grows exponentially as this authority is leveraged through slaves and servants.  We have the sense in this material, in purusing the basic facts of history, that all sight is lost as to the original source of authority.  We have the sense, examining today's society, that the people who are oppressed are really oppressed; but, on the other hand, the people who think they are in charge of society are not in charge.  The people who are thought to be in charge are not in charge.  We have the image of a train running down tracks, somehow, with no engineer at the wheel.    The authority that there was in the first master/slave relationship has become a circle of force with no beginning or end; the slaves that receive the force to act simply pass this force on to other slaves, and so forth.