Yesterday, I decided to write an entry on the rationalisation that is increasingly taking part in today’s society. I think it’s an important issue to raise since I believe that it is extremely dehumanising and denies people’s individuality and free development, especially that of children, and especially regarding the fact that they will be in charge once we are gone (or almost gone).
In my opinion, many people decide to have children because that is what one is ‘ought’ to do, treating their child like an accessory, without the resources to emotionally nourish them, and for them to subsequently be able to unfurl. Education has increasingly not become about learning and developing, but rather it focuses on intake of information and can turn children into information machines, ready to function properly in their forthcoming career, its aim being to make money. If the child has not been able to achieve the right grades, it could end up hard-working, maybe in a factory, carrying out the same tasks over and over again (as is the case in many developing countries). This means they will be not working for the joy and the ability to make use of their own potential and talent, but they will be working for the sake of making money, and for the economy to function effectively and efficiently (how many times have I written these words in a job application?). Another important point is that most education leaves out the teaching of life, and the advocacy of feelings and the right to becoming an individual.
These examples may be seen as an exaggeration, but it is just a possibility of what the rationalised society can lead to. And also, one should take into account the internal factors that may lead to these examples given, which may have nothing to do with society, but more to do with the family circle. But does society form the individual, or does the individual form society… who knows. It’s probably an interactive process though.
I believe that the current societal system is very much focused on “functioning for profit”. This change from mysticism to rational thinking developed in Western society once states’ governments increased, especially as a result of the Industrial Revolution. According to sociologist Max Weber (see e.g. The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism), the increase of population and space that had to be administered, and the complexity of the administrative tasks that came with it alongside the existence of a monetary system, lead to the need of better administrative system, which thus resulted in rationalisation. According to sociologist George Ritzer, society has shifted from traditional thinking to rational thinking and scientific management. He believes that this rationality is really irrational though, since it denies basic humanity, and keeps people trapped in a system in which they can’t always behave as what they are – HUMAN.
Thus, I believe, that when the structure of the society is determined by fast and efficient economic gain, and sees people as a means to this gain, but the people themselves (their beliefs, motivations, and feelings) go against this, then surely they are left to feel confused, and maybe even frustrated or angry. It could be argued that mental illness (which is predominant in western societies, or at least the way it is dealt with) is partly caused by this system, or if not, it is exacerbated by it, which can be noticed by large amounts of stigmatization, labelling (the invention of mental illnesses without any biological proof), and psychopharmaceutical-prescription (bringing immense profit to Big Pharma). The commercialisation of happiness could also be a result of this rationalisation. Since many people cannot fulfil their own potential in their work, they are kept “happy” through the selling of certain foods, brands, music, T.V. etc., and if that doesn’t work, they are advised to pop some pills.
I am, however, in no way blaming businesses for this rationalisation. There is no point in blaming anyone, since we all need to take responsibility and realise that we are not powerless!
If you are worried or fed up as I am about the current state of society, it is very good to know that this can be changed. As a Simpol supporter, I believe that the cause of the rationalisation of society, and putting sales and money before people and culture, is due to our current global system of unbridled competition. Businesses can’t and shouldn’t be concerned with people and culture since they are a different entity – they have to abide to the business system and the law pertaining to it. The highest goal of corporate law is to maximise returns to shareholders, and this law ranks highest to the other laws. Thus, businesses have to do everything to be able to live up to this law, and even if they do want to make changes in the system, they can’t because of global economic competition, and the threat of takeover and potential legal challenge from its shareholders.
What needs to be done to combat rationalisation, is for modern governance to provide a counterbalance to the effects that rationalisation has on society. However, just like businesses themselves, governments are not able to provide this counterbalance, also due to global economic competition. If they were to implement any kind of changes, corporations will move to other countries, leaving the previous country economically uncompetitive. In this way, both governments and corporations are powerless, and are forced to focus solely on money and sales. In this way, the whole system becomes fundamentally unbalanced.
Simpol seeks to redress this imbalance by handing the power back to businesses, governments and its people in a balanced way. By adopting Simpol, corporations and governments will no longer have to fear economic competition, since simultaneous policies mean that they will be implemented in every country simultaneously, leaving no incentive for businesses to move to another country. Money and business will become democratised, achieved by monetary reform and through remodelling business to become stakeholder governed. However, we have to accept that due to the present system, rationalisation will always exist to some extent, but the clue is to balance it against social justice.
Simpol has loads of other policies on stock which will all lead to a decrease in rationalisation, and an increase in individual freedom. You will be able to find all these policies on the new website that is being currently developed, and you will be able to be a part of choosing policies and suggesting (?) new ones. If you want to feel unburdened from rationalistic oppression, become a Simpol adopter! There is no trick behind it or anything, you don’t have to pay or will be sucked into an obscure cult. In my opinion it’s the most logical way to make a change, and it is peaceful and strategic, bringing back power to the people and enabling the individual to flourish.