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158 . comunidad los horcones with Burris. Frazier, although apparently concealing his part in the founding of Walden Two, is obviously proud of his “creation.” He explains his pride, and other “negative” emotions, by saying that he is “not a product of Walden Two” (233). It is quite possible that Robinson views himself similarly. His autocratic behavior and theory combined with his efforts at keeping himself in the background seem to point in that direction. Perhaps the majority of the members of Los Horcones have recognized Robinson’s extraordinary status but believe it to be a problem that will solve itself in time, as Joseph Wood Krutch has remarked about Frazier: “Frazier himself is compelled to make a significant confession: the motives which led him to undertake his successful experiment included a certain desire to exercise power over his fellows. . . . But he insists that the danger will disappear with him because those who succeed to his authority and inherit his techniques will have enjoyed, as he did not, the advantages of a scientific conditioning process and that therefore such potentially antisocial impulses as his will no longer exist” (203). If this is what the communards at Los Horcones hope for, their community stands on shaky ground.Who is to say if and how a void left by an absent leader can be filled? The past has shown that many communities centered around a charismatic person fall apart as soon as they lose their center. It is my guess that the stability of Los Horcones will be put to its hardest test when Robinson is not there anymore to guide the community.It may be that Los Horcones will disappear along with the “danger” of an individual’s “desire to exercise power.” 18 Behaviorism as Religion the communards at los horcones firmly believe in the possibility of establishing objectively definable moral values. They regard themselves as scientists who have arrived at their own community’s values—cooperation, pacifism, egalitarianism, and ecological consciousness—from scientific, objectively obtainable data. This leads them to believe that Los Horcones is the “product of a science,” not of a “particular ideology” (“Los Horcones” 4). In the communards’ opinion, this fact sets Los Horcones apart from all prior and current attempts at designing a new society: 04.133-162_Kuhl.indd 158 3/29/05 4:02:37 PM Several ways have been proposed in the past to change these [accidental] societies to other,more planned ones.Unfortunately,these proposed changes have taken into consideration only philosophical, historical, political, economic, or religious suggestions. None of these fields has provided the objective data through which a culture can be designed to survive and produce happy people who do not harm others. Sometimes other proposals have been offered that are said to be based on “science,” but the term “science” has been used in very different ways. Usually the so-called “science” is not based on scientific experimentation, which is the major requirement of a natural science. Such a “science” has nothing to contribute to cultural design. Nor can a useful contribution be made by a philosophy that is not based on a concept of man which is compatible with the image of man that scientific experimentation gives us. There is no reason to permit opinions from such a philosophy to intervene in the design of a culture. (Los Horcones, “Pilot” 25) One is to understand that scientific experimentation alone is an eligible means of discovering and defining human values. In the opinion of Los Horcones, although “no single science is adequate for the task of designing the physical and social environments that comprise a society,” nothing but natural sciences based on scientific experimentation have a “place in the process” (“Social Change” 36). The communards at Los Horcones thus fully agree with Skinner that facts can produce values. The communards state that science can be used to design a culture that is “to survive and produce happy people who do not harm others” (“Social Change” 36). Yet by designating survival, happiness, and harmlessness as their goals, the communards are already making a moral judgment, namely that the survival of the human species is desirable, that the end product should be happy people, and that these happy people should not harm others . As we have seen, in discussing their governmental system, they started out by asking what “type of government would allow our citizens to participate in all governmental functions,” without explaining...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780252091650
Related ISBN
9780252029622
MARC Record
OCLC
811409117
Pages
264
Launched on MUSE
2013-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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