RESTRING THE HARP

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     [Tom Baines]
     Dan Miller (940510):

     >>Do these people trade notes, manuscripts, library cards?<

     Jaques Elul and Thomas Kuhn would probably say they either do that or
     trade dreams.

     OK. No one has a good clue as to how a socioeconomic system maintains
     stability. Ted Gurr, M. Skopol, and some others have offered pretty
     high level "models" of what that kind of stability looks like, and how
     to recognize that it has been destroyed, but there doesn't seem to be
     much help if you want to know how relative stability is reached in the
     first place. Stephen Walt does a pretty good job of outlining why
     alliances form, and Terrel Arnold has insight into why people support
     terroristic rebellion. A number of writers (Seabury, Codevilla, DuPuy,
     Van Crevald) have gone beyond the dated premises of Clausewitz (even
     as "modernized by Harry Summers) with some sound discussion of what
     must happen to restore balance when instability turns into conflict.
     Nobody seems to have a better way of defining and evaluating social
     instability, however, which would seem to be the necessary starting
     place for better answers.

     So what exactly does PCT tell us about how two or more organisms move
     toward relative stability in relation to one another? What does
     Powers' premise that social systems really don't exist - that "Society
     is [merely] a perception" - really mean in terms of dealing with the
     needful behavior that leads to riots and war. Does the oriental view
     of socioeconomic activity as an analog of war inform us in any way?

     The "reorganization" discussions all work on reorganization of the
     INDIVIDUAL'S core references. The only discussion in depth that I've
     seen about how that gets dealt with by pairs, triads, groups, etc. is
     that between Martin Taylor & Bill P. about layered protocols.

     This is a great time for PCT to offer some new insights into how to
     analyze public policies with regard to social instability. Some one
     of you can win a Nobel prize if PCT can give us a better handle on
     this issue of how to even define social instability in more productive
     ways.