[extropy-chat] Re: A view of what politics is

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Sun Oct 16 06:22:09 UTC 2005

On 10/16/05, Jack Parkinson <isthatyoujack at icqmail.com> wrote:
> Rafal said
> On 10/15/05, Jack Parkinson <isthatyoujack at icqmail.com> wrote:
> I posted this before - I still think the best definition of politics is:
> The
> relationships between groups! At any level - from office factions to
> negotiations between superpowers. Politics is only incidentally social
> decision making. It is wholly about interacting communities.
> ### Is buying T-shirts from China a form of politics?
> No! Unless you are doing this as an expression of group values concerning
> Chinese group values...

### Now it is getting more complicated - so politics is not merely
"relationships between groups" but rather "relationships between groups
expressing group values". And what are "group values"? It's getting
positively baroque.


> Is imprisoning an individual dissenter not a form of politics?
> Yes! The group expresses it'd disapproval of dissent - by sanctions
> against representatives of groups that oppose it...

### Oh, our dissenter has not joined a group. Is he a group all by himself?

So you seem to say that imprisoning a single dissenter is politics. What
about hiring a hangman? Is this politics ("a group's expression of approval
of willingness to kill for money")? What about a town hiring a garbage
collector? A group of garbage collectors? Which one is not politics?


I think something is missing from your definition of politics.
> Rafal
> I don't think anything is missing!

### I do think a bit more of my questioning will convince the onlookers that
a lot is.

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