Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Os "pequenos pelotões da sociedade" e as associações voluntárias não são a mesma coisa

 Knock It Off With the ‘Little Platoons’ Already, por James Mcelroy (The American Conservative):

There’s a trend in conservative writing towards using a certain Edmund Burke quote. The 18th-century thinker has long been considered the grandfather of modern conservatism, yet his entire output has been largely reduced to two words: “little platoons.” Yes, Burke is important. But c’mon already. Is there a quota somewhere? A quick 30-second internet search shows the platoons quote here,here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and just a few days ago here. No other Burkean formulation is used so prominently. Is it picking nits to be annoyed by this constant regurgitation? Maybe. Yet it seems indicative of something important. (...)

The passage in Reflections on the Revolution in France where “little platoons” appears is about French aristocrats who led the Third Estate against other aristocrats. “Platoon” doesn’t reference local government. It doesn’t reference volunteer organizations. It doesn’t even directly reference community. It references class. Yuval Levin, who helped popularize the term in our time, made this point in his book The Great Debate: “Burke’s famous reference to the little platoon…is often cited as an example of a case for local government or allegiance to place, but in its context in the Reflections the passage is very clearly a reference to social class.”

It might sound pedantic to say that community-focused conservatives misuse the quote. They are, after all, expressing the same essential idea as Burke: society depends on intermediary institutions between the individual and the state. However, when Burke is distanced from the aristocracy to which he referred and interpreted through a modern liberal lens, we arrive at the conclusion that any self-chosen association is a boon to society. It is important to acknowledge the origins of the phrase because it implies that part of the significance of the platoon is precisely that it is not chosen.
Ainda a esse respeito, ver o meu post A opinião de um esquerdista sobre o liberalismo e o conservadorismo.

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