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By Alexander Kremer, John Ryder

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With selective insight, we can perceive a lack of consistency both in the social self and in the general sense of reality. The vocabulary most frequently used by public opinion (in Spain, perhaps in Europe, and up to a point worldwide) to face these deficiencies is tolerance, peace (against terrorism), territorial distribution or the recognition of social identity, social cooperation, on so on. This is a discussion currently enclosed in a kind of diffused tautology or truism. But we are forced to modify our way of thinking, precisely in order to combine individual aims and communal tasks, to improve the quality of education, economic productivity, and the like.

But this application appears to go beyond the actual intention of Peirce; we have moved from the original Peircean conception of the community of inquirers towards an emergent political community. Is this transformation pertinent? The answer will reveal our ultimately fundamental conceptual framework. If we were still Kantian, a normative community should be understood as a moral one founded upon the social will (Rousseau) rather than on tradition. However, after the 19th century naturalism that is clearly evident in Perice´s thought, we are compelled to recognize that morality itself is something between happiness and logic.

It appears that the reshaping of personal identity and the extraordinary recovery of collective vitality derive from a passive adaptation rather than from an active learning process. There is no common understanding of the past. The dictatorship has been condemned by the majority, but there is no explicit consensus in historical interpretation regarding the significance of the defeated Republic; public virtues or civil religiosity are still relatively weak, and pervasive consumerism coexists with an imperfect social state.

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