Counter-Conduct: "Any action that reasserts the primacy of the right hemisphere."
That is my McGilchristization of Foucault's "counter-conduct."
The immediate implications: Any action that beats down the left hemisphere in favor of the right hemisphere is counter-conduct. Because modernity is the left hemisphere's usurpation of the right hemisphere's primacy, actions that contradict modernity tend to be counter-conduct. Any action against a modern characteristic tends to be counter-conduct.
One defining characteristic of modernity is restlessness: the need to move and escape one's roots, the inability to see that the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence, the lack of appreciation for one's home.
Language tends to "make the uncommon common." Nietzsche.
This inability to appreciate home is related to the left hemisphere's dominance. The left hemisphere conceptualizes and articulates: it reduces the novel and beautiful to the familiar and average. Once you label something, you can move onto the next thing: you've put the thing into a box and that's that.
If you live in a small town, you can label and box up everything pretty fast. You've seen it all, your left hemisphere has put it into boxes, and now there's nothing else to see or do.
It's time to move to New York or L.A., or at least Seattle . . . maybe Chicago (or Austin these days).
“[H]ypermobility . . . is the great undiagnosed sickness of our age.” Bill Kauffman, Look Homeward, America
But the right hemisphere demurs. It's the hemisphere of poetry and imagination, and those things see that every place bristles with newness. You never step into the same river twice, said Heraclitus. I'd argue that you never step into the same Dollar General twice. A poetic approach lets us see this:
Poetry lifts the veil from the hidden beauty of the world, and makes familiar objects be as if they were not familiar . . . It creates anew the universe, after it has been annihilated in our minds by the recurrence of impressions blunted by reiteration. Percy Byshee Shelley
The Midwest has suffered greatly by the left hemisphere's dominance for one reason: poetry teems in its miles and miles of fields, but all the fields are in one prosaic box labeled "fields."
Is "localism" merely a foil for racism? For isolation and distrust of outsiders?
Perhaps, but it's just the way we're wired. Ethnic diversity in a community "seems to cause a reduction in social capital." J. Haidt, The Righteous Mind, 360, citing a Robert Putnam study. We ignore it to our own detriment, says the self-professed lefty Haidt. The liberals' zeal to help victims, combined with other traits,
often lead them to push for changes that weaken groups, traditions, institutions and moral capital. For example, the urge to help the inner-city poor led to welfare programs in the 1960s that reduced the value of marriage, increased out-of-wedlock births, and weakened African-American families.
Of course, it is very possible that the gnostics on the left did that on purpose. They wanted all mediating institutions to die so a grand Marxist plan to replace everything with the Federal Everything would prevail. If you're interested in that line of thought, check out Darryl Cooper's Martyrmade podcast. I wish I could pinpoint the exact needle where he makes this point, but I can't find it in the hay.