It is just over a year since the last issue of this magazine appeared and indeed it looks as though we shall continue as an annual. Everyone knows the drawbacks of irregular appearance but perhaps it is worth mentioning one of the advantages, namely that sufficient thought and research can be put into each subject as to enable the editor to hopefully contribute something original to the debate in question. As our regular readers know, we are not in the business of propaganda in the sense that it is commonly understood. We are doing something much more long term, namely helping to provide a comprehensive philosophical and cultural basis for an alternative world view. Our intention is to educate, so the very purpose of this magazine is covered by the subject of the current issue. If we are unable to educate, to convince, to lead into a new world, no other success of any kind, political or economic, will last. The originality of organisations like GRECE in France lay in the fact that they understood the importance of education before political change. It is a common error to believe that education follows political change. While not going so far as the Jesuit who said give us your child only until he is 8 years old and we have him for life, it is unquestionably true that the education a person receives in his early years has an immense influence on the rest of his life, an influence furthermore which it is impossible to entirely ignore. This is not simply a question of what we have learned or not learned at school but of a range of feelings and emotions that are also part of an education and which determine to an extraordinary degree our approach to political, moral and not least important, cultural issues. For conservatives to admit to the influence of education is admit to the influence of environment in shaping character, something which conservatives by their very nature are reluctant to do. For this reason conservatism, with its belief in the inborn character and the importance of the family, has been reluctant to play more than a negative role in debate about educational priorities, the role of advertising in shaping the attitudes of generations etc. Those who already believe in the power of the environment to influence character are less scrupulous about influencing the educational process. This magazine shares the environmentalist view to the extent that we acknowledge that human character, especially personal priorities are formed by education at least as much as by inborn traits. Education determines in many ways our tastes: what we are accustomed to we tend to identify with, how we chose our clothes, our career, how we esteem ourselves and others and our attitude to nature. Finally, education, as its name implies, is about leadership, indeed it is the argument of this magazine that discipline is impossible without authentic leadership. And it is leadership which is lacking in the modern school. That role is now in the hands of the media, especially the advertising media. A new education must regard the advertising industry as broadly speaking its enemy, with an agenda ultimately political, to break down human identities, thereby, as Alain de Benoist justly observed, depoliticising the individual. Modern education, which preaches liberty, prepares its pupils for a life in which the they are politically emasculated. Education is about the state, it is about how society is organised, it is political first and last. And no educationalist is more political than the one who claims to be non-political.
What has happened to The Sting? The answer is that it has gone into cold storage until such time as enough persons show an interest in its survival. Neither Sting nor the editor's play, The Temptation has been forgotten; they are waiting for better times. In the meantime this magazine will continue to do the best it can in helping to discredit and eventually destroy an educational environment whose only understanding of value is contained in the word price.
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