The human in political science Ruthless Criticism

The world is full of humans. You are one, I am too, even the President. But what is our common concern? Who is the human in us all? These are questions that cry out for clarification, and science keeps its promise: it knows the human very precisely, depending on the different discipline. This time:

The human in political science:
A violent anarchist with the will to submit to state power

Political scientists proceed from the idea that unless humans are subordinated under a law-imposing ultimate power, they would constantly clash in the pursuit of their interests – whether in purchasing a car, building a house or going to a concert. Without a state, a “war of all against all” would break out; and without rights and laws, there would be chaos and nobody would stand a chance. Thus this proves that where interests act without constraint, they cannot be met because they mutually oppose each other.

This paradox is treated by political scientists like an empirical fact: by looking at this world as it exists, they want to have established that conflicts of interest always and everywhere appear wherever interests are asserted. Certainly, conflicts flourish in this world, between tenants and landlords, husbands and wives, wage laborers and entrepreneurs, creditors and debtors, and so on – but not a single one occurs “without the state.” The material that gives political scientists’ their idea is a world in which everything exists under state supervision; in which humans who are are subordinated to state power dedicate themselves to proving themselves in conditions set by the state; in which all interests, ranging from property to the family, are legally defined; and in which the clashes of interests therefore always have the form that legitimate interests strive to eliminate each other.

Political scientists wish to have discovered in this world, of all things, how the human behaves without a state. They relocate the reason for the conflicts brought into being by the state reality so that it exists outside this reality – and inside the human. However, the human, abstracted from the state reality in thought, is not abstracted from this world; the human is a phantom subject. On the other hand, and in contradiction to this, this phantom subject is said to be the reason for all the collisions of rights which political scientists know from the state reality, and thus they assign to the human a characteristic which reveals that the pre-state political animal is here defined by observance of the state order: without a state, the human would violate everything that the state dictates. Even though without a state there would be no dictates at all! Political scientists need their bourgeois state fantasy to picture this contradiction: the human in political science is the barbarian turned citizen, the enemy of every traffic regulation, the competitive maniac who ignores all the officially set rules of competition, in short: the disturber of all state order in principle.

For political scientists, this image of the human seriously justifies the restraint of this creature. They derive the necessity for state power from the need in human nature to break laws. Their state fanaticism prevents them from looking at an asserted interest any differently than the way the state prosecution looks at violations of the law. What they offer as a derivation of the state from human nature is their point of view that there must be a state so that its own order takes effect. And from this point of view, they mold their image of the human.

This has another decisive snag for them. In particular: with the violent anarchist they present, no state can come about; he is extremely poorly suited for practicing obedience. They themselves notice that their alleged necessity for the state only has a moral nature, that they have justified the thing according to its impossibility, and from there they perform the logically dubious transition to looking for the possibility of the state in the human. Barely have they discovered the wolf in man and, of all things, a need for rule in this beast, when they deal with this by allowing their human to sign a “social contract” by which he voluntarily submits to the power of the state.

Now one may imagine the human as someone who shares the political scientists’ understanding of the necessity for the state. That his interest can only be asserted if it is shown to be within bounds is a contradiction that makes sense to him, so he is in favor of his own restriction. Only: precisely this makes the force of the state, whose necessity the political scientist wants to have discovered, seem fairly superfluous; one's own success must not be obtained by force. Nevertheless, one must also think back to the big bad wolf – political scientists maintain that the state conforms to the human. They do not explain that he is well suited for a state that orders his obedience because of some beneficial qualities of state power. Its the other way around – they construct a human who corresponds to the state. In doing so, they are very consistent. Out of this comes an idiot who thinks of every restriction as his freedom. This doesn't tell us anything good about the state.