Resurrecting Knatz.com / Teaching / Society / NoHier / Institutions
@ K. 1999
Purpose in Institutions
Any authority always has at least two purposes: a theoretical purpose, the purpose claimed; and at least one more: a purpose which can only be inferred by analysis of actual experience with the authority.
The advertised purpose will seldom be the “real” purpose.
Thus: a church may claim to speak for God; but in fact arrest Jesus, burn the heretic, put a contract out on Luther … A democracy may claim that it grants freedom to its citizens; while in fact it kidnaps children (compelling them to attend school), drafts young men, denies young women their choice of medical treatment … A democracy may teach that it guarantees freedom of speech to the kidnapped children; but in fact may send the intelligent kid to the principal’s office as a trouble maker, approve a flattering press, jail a free speaker as incendiary …
But then don’t all authorities have one purpose? To discourage the spread of ideas perceived to be incompatible with the perceived health of the institution. To maintain power! (And bloat!) (See Purpose PS: following post.)
Monopolize Record Keeping
2010 12 09 Whatever the initial purpose of an institution that institution will begin keeping records, then will want to monopolize the record keeping. Mohawk records of their ancestral territories are not likely to be vividly displayed in the Library of Congress. The Vatican archives might have records of the beliefs of a heretic burned eight hundred years ago, but any mention the congregation may hear will be written by priests whose orthodoxy is accepted by the Church.
If the deceivers can just keep the truth teller from being heard long enough to starve him, jail him, crucify him, then the deceivers can refurbish him, resurrect him: only it will still be the deceivers doing all the talking: all the talking that gets heard: not the truth teller.
Always ask yourself one question: Are your institutions there to serve survival? of a sane, viable, sustainable mankind?
Or are your institutions actually serving other purposes? the perpetuation of fraud? the protection of vested interests?
Are we like Jesus? challenging institutions? Or are we like Peter? denying the heroes? Or are we like the Romans? doing whatever is expedient: with soldiers to enforce it? and factory-manufactured lawyers to explain everything away?
Obviously, pk’s life has been dedicated to challenging institutions: from church, to school, to government … That’s why my work has never been reflected accurately, seldom amplified, little passed on. But: I’ve yet done little work under that formal rubric in this my Society section. Expect this sub-folder to expand and to mature.
Institutions buffer human experience before it can reach human intelligence. The Church, the University, the State … tag team data, ideas, observations … before Life Magazine … or the local teacher or priest spread any words, maps, descriptions. Jesus did just fine out in the sticks but Jerusalem was equipped to swallow him.
Thus, only the god, the genius, the saint, the madman … are capable of raw experience: all in society is filtered. Had the normal peasant, the normal astrologer, the normal professor … looked toward Jupiter through Galileo’s telescope, they would “see” nothing abnormal, nothing revolutionary. Thus, the same people who spread palms for Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem, on Golgatha saw only a criminal being punished.
See my recent post on “obverse” ambiguity (an idea I’ve been discussing publicly since 1969) when a Paul Lauter and Florence Howe article first showed me that the school system had a stated purpose and a hidden purpose and that the hidden purpose was the “real” purpose: to regiment the population in the name of “learning.” Those arguments were developed in my FLEX files, which got censored and which I hope to remount in my InfoAll blog: critiquing the particular institution of school, and telling how Ivan Illich designed learning networks to offer an improved substitute for schools and I founded it, ran it, and talked and wrote about interconnecting the networks, thereby “inventing” the internet in 1970-71.
I came online this noon to declare that the purpose of institutions is to sauté the unconventional in a shortening which will assure than no resources stick to them. pk for example: my GRE’s have demonstrated that I’m in the top 1% of professional Americans in reading abiilty (ie, intelligence); but have never been employable, not even at minimum wage, for a half century! People say my ideas are good, but don’t contribute, watch while I sink lower and lower. But now I see that I did say that above: just minus the pk details.
My adult thinking about institutions’ purpose was stimulated by an NYR artile by Lauter and Howe deconstructing schools’ purpose. That article preceded Ivan Illich’s articles that prepubbed chapters from his Deschooling Society. (All that was online at InfoAll.org, some now online at the InfoAll blog, the domain destroyed by the fed in a domino effect.) I’m now recreating InfoAll’s Reasons for School there, spun off from Knatz.com. I’m gathering them in a pseudo temporal sequence beginning at 2010 Janurary 1. My personal school stories illustrating civilization’s non-convivial (anti-Christ in Illich’s and my view) behavior starting at “2009 April 1.”
I said above (as I’ve written and said more than once): “Don’t all authorities have one purpose? To discourage the spread of ideas perceived to be incompatible with the perceived health of the institution.”
In other words: any institution represents a culture, any culture is a belief system, a set of belief systems. Science is the only belief system even theoretically based in evidence, in experience: where the evidence, the theory about the evidence is falsifiable. Culture is represented by illusionists. Science is theoretically composed of ghost busters: but science is funded only by other institutions: and how much funding did church-tied universities give to Darwinism? how much funding did Fortune 500-related institutions give to pk and the deschoolers?
No: all conspire to substitute faith for evidence: so that the majority can go on believing in their own immortality, their infallibility, their justice, their right to a high standard of living: while the earth, the biosphere, truth … go to hell. Never mind God: truth will have the last word. Only no one will hear it. Dishonest, disintelligent, sentience will be wiped from existence: along with beaucoup species.
This is rhetoric, not science, not math. Strict logic and language don’t normally match one-to-one, especially when the speaker is a Samson trying to pull down the temple. My point is: Get the point before you quibble, before you quarrel with the point. Don’t correct the style of the guy yelling that the Titanic has a hole below the water line. (In other circumstances, his style might be impeccable.)
May I further point out that I initiated this blog to try to fill the void created by the censoring of my five domains with their thousands of graphics and multi-thousands of essays, stories, critiques … They’re are not a single essay with an editor and a publisher. Jesus’ words had blood on them, so do mine. The society’s everything has blood on it.
These statements are intrinsic to a number of sections of Knatz.com: