Cognitive inadequacy: history and the technocratic management of an artificial world

History is the dominant form of human self-comprehension in a world dominated by global capitalism: it is this system in ideal form. But this is an artificial world constructed against nature. It is governed by the disciplined studiousness that sustains the social historian-function. It is maintained by the history-focussed behaviour of the technocracy (administrators, experts, technicians, and – not least – academics) that manage it. But historical judgment is by definition faulty, its comprehensive managerial stance cognitively inadequate. As the examples cited here demonstrate, civilization based on it looks catastrophic: history compromises the very human existence it is meant to reassure. Nurturing its illusions, automatically imposing its disciplinary authority, history exposes its own redundancy.