The Definition and Use of ‘-ISMs’


What do we mean when we use “-ism’s”?

noun informal

“a distinctive practice, system, or philosophy, that provides categories, values, epistemological methods, and means of decidability in a domain of preferences: typically a political ideology, philosophy, institutional framework, economic model, or an artistic movement. isms separate the categories that are defined by the constant relations of the physical world from the inconstant categories of the preferential world that we call the sciences. A science does not account for preferences in inputs or outputs, but an ‘ism, as a means of decidability between preferences must.”

So one must know the ism’s to debate them. To know the isms requires one know the categories, values, methods of epistemology, and means of decidability that they refer to. So in systems of preferences, ism’s are identical to any other taxonomic categorization in any other specific domain, such as that of family, kingdom, genus, and species.

When referring to ‘isms’ we can use other ‘isms’ to reinterpret them – using a different set of categories, values, epistemological methods, and means of decidability.

if we are confused by one another’s arguments we can clarify our arguments by increasing the precision of our arguments, by referring directly to categories, values, epistemological methods, and means of decidability.

When one criticizes the use of ism’s one is criticizing a taxonomic reference to a set of particulars: categories, values, epistemological methods, and means of decidability, one does little more than (a) demonstrate one’s ignorance of the topic, (b) demonstrate one’s arrogance from a position of ignorance, (c) attempt to steal from others by demanding that they pay the cost of educating you, or tolerate the existence of your theft, and the consequences it might have if your attempted theft is interpreted by others as an inability to construct a counter argument. In other words, arguments from ignorance are a form of blackmail. And those who conduct blackmail are those we wish to punish for their crimes.

The ethical, moral, and non-criminal means of requesting information is this: “I don’t understand, would you mind answering this question: what do you mean when you say….”

To which the other will respond either with reciprocal ethical and moral and non-criminal means, by saying “Ok.(attempted clarification)”, or some variation on “I can’t afford to make that investment now, but here is where you may look do it yourself”, or “I just don’t have the time or inclination to invest in that question at the moment”.

Curt Doolittle
The Cult of Non Submission
The Philosophy of Aristocracy
The Natural Law of Sovereign Men
The Propertarian Institute, Kiev, Ukraine


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