Monday, August 13, 2007

a new covenant from the quorum

i said after the polls that turkey's future now rests with the ability of tayyib efendi & co. in working out a new "covenant", a social contract, that enables turks, who have become absolutely unqualified to live together as a "society", to reestablish the media of coexistence again.

that requires an intellectual acumen and faculty which obviously surpasses the ken of tayyib efendi & co., whose cerebral acuity is mainly honed by islam. however, the legitimacy they have harvested in the elections can only be turned into real political power if they can re-write the rule book of cohesion and diversity.

yes, certainly power writes its own truth; but if the rule book is to be convincing, applicable and workable, it has to be universally functional rather than local, regional, even national or otherwise parochial.

for a basically rural population that has resettled in urban surroundings and modified it to its taste physically,psychicallly and ethically, universality is hardly a priority. furthermore, whether they have a feel for its utility or not, the political cadres of such popular/ist movements as the akp are rarely accoutered themselves to administer and cope with a cognitive innovation that cannot be grasped by practice alone but requires a philosophical gestalt of knowledge and action.

paradoxically however, tayyib efendi & co. are better positioned than almost any modernizer in turkish history to lead a gradually modernizing and geographically urbanizing nation accross that rubicon: first, because the 47 percent poll victory does not give the akp any license to do what they were feared they would do. that leaves them to wear the universal armor of "westernization" for their own "protection". second, they must have realized that while they may keep the outside of their heads islamically geared, keeping time to the universal tango inside, brings more kudos. third, "they" (and relatively, turks) are indeed getting richer; and the hedonism that is the hallmark of richness, simply gets smothered by parochialism - look at the saudi youth finally launching their kind of a "protest" movement. fourth, tayyib efendi & co. are pragmatists enough to realize that their success at the ballot box owes more to the pro -eu policies they adopted in the first three years than abdullah gül's ouster-by-direct-order from the presidential race or the quasi-religious show of nationalism they tried to replace their slackening eu drive with. the eu, after all, is a milestone on the eternal course of universality.

"writing" a social covenant is quite different from writing and passinng a new constitution - you do not do it with your pen, you do it with your life. it is tough because when lives cannot meet and merge in legitimacy, they eventually jeopardize each other. that is why, only in the last week there were more than one "drunken driving caused deaths" reported in the peapers per day. that is why a poor rich not so little fashion model was put in prison, while a mother was murdered by her son after a family sanction. that is also why we have dried up, after very parochially, stealing from our own nature the lakes, wetlands, swamps, moors etc. to turn them into fields, hotels, factories and even universities.

a universal life code cannot brook privilege or exception or stupidity, that have become the aggregate root cause of the anomie that is consuming turkey.

and tayyib efendi & co. are the only campaigners, brave, powerful yet still desparate enough to seek and discover the order within chaos, to serve everyone. the polity quorum (*) they command is not complacent enough to refuse seeking assistance from opinion makers outside their turf, at home and in the world.

after all, tayyib efendi & co. set forth with the ambition of making islam an organic component of the dominant world-culture, what better chance can they expect to have than write its universal tenets into a life-saving covenant of coexistence?

(*) a polity quorum consists of the designers, deciders, advocates, implementers, alternatives, critics and opponents of policy, active in the fields of politics, academe, arts, media-communications, industry, finance, commerce and the clergy. it exercises its potency, among other matters, on the structures and contents of communication and , even when not directly involved in that trade, can function as a body of "communication elites" by means of its global social influence. a polity quorum tends to establish itself as the david that can slay any goliath threatening society. the polity quorum can sway the representations of truth to its will with recourse to the power of discourse by which it tacitly provides the public with templates of thought and political action.

and if they fail? too many unneccessary but inevitable deaths later, just as was the case in the wild west, the wild east of the third and a half world will also settle its frontier rules. or the frontier will settle its rules.

1 comment:

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