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Name Is Important
Name of a philosophy, project, movement, group, ideology etc. plays a more significant role than a common man believes. A naive view is that name is just an identifier, a common man will rather believe promise of politician than the name of his party; however name is much more than a mere string of letters, it is the single most stable defining feature of an entity; everything else, all the books and knowledge associated with it may be distorted by history, but the name will always stay the same and will hold a scrutiny over all actions of the entity, it will always be a permanent reminder to every follower of what he is trying to achieve. But what if the name of the movement changes? Then it is to be considered a new, different movement. The name usually holds the one true goal.
For this we have to keep in mind two things:
- When encountering a new movement/philosophy/ideology etc., we can tell a lot about it from its name: the name is its ultimate goal which will be pursued on detriment of other goals. A lot of times the bad movements are those named after the means (e.g. capitalism or open source) or people (e.g. Maoism) rather than goals (e.g. pacifism) because by this dominance the focus on means will inevitably subordinate the goal.
- When starting a new movement, we have to pay very careful attention to giving it a name.
Nevertheless keep in mind that while the power of the name is great, it is not infinite and the above may not hold if stronger forces are at play -- there have been many cases of name abuse in history, notably e.g. by Nazism whose name stands for "national socialism" but whose actions were completely anti-socialist, or so called "Anarcho" capitalism which abuses the name anarchism despite being completely anti-anarchist.
Let us comment on a few examples:
- Capitalism: The goal is maximization of capital -- capital should be the means to achieving "something" (what lol?), but it instead becomes the goal. There is no promise of a good society, it is not mentioned in the name, and indeed what we get is a system that evolves corporations that get progressively better at maximizing capital, on the detriment of people.
- Free Software Movement: The movement is about user's freedom and therefore ethics. Notice that even though definitions of free software may slightly differ between different branches of it, the groups calling themselves free software movements always pursue freedom. This is why capitalism couldn't embrace free software: because thanks to the name it always firmly stands against abusing the user. Of course, even the meaning of the word freedom may eventually be shifted and the movement may get spoiled too, but it has stood for a long time and has already proven a great resistance.
- Open Source Movement: The movement has been born from the Free Software Movement with a specific goal of abandoning ethics and supporting business. The ethics (freedom) has been dropped from the name and was replaced with the word "open", and indeed what we're seeing is software that is somewhat "open" -- whatever that means -- but mostly capitalism software abusing and restricting its users by means other than proprietary licenses (see e.g. Firefox).
- Feminism: The goal is to benefit the females, i.e. make the superior to males. There is no mention of equality of sexes in the name even this idea might have appeared somewhere in the movement's beginning. And indeed, what we're seeing is a progressively more aggressive fascist movement that is downright hostile to males, is completely uninterested in inequality in the opposite direction and only ever looks for empowering the women, without any concern of equality.
- LGBT: Same as feminism.
- Anarchism: anarchism means "without a ruler" which has shown to be a good name, clearly opposing the idea of one man standing above another and so, again, keeps resisting attempts at being twisted to go against this basic goal. We rarely see the name being abused by the powerful because someone who wants to rule others simply cannot promote something that clearly indicates there should be no rulers. Indeed, there exist attempts at abusing the name, such as "Anarcho" capitalism, but we observe the shear absurdity of such attempt is quickly spotted by most people who know what the word anarchism means.
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