Yes, of course, the answer to my last post about the dominance of the rational is ‘Well, what about the late pernicious rise of the irrational? What about the growing power (indeed real political power) of a mentality that rejects scientific method and consensus, and the authority of evidence or even of logic? What about the multitudes who indulge in magical thinking about economics or science or healthcare or national security? Who don’t believe in climate change or vaccinating their kids; who don't see a link between guns and gun violence; who are probably about to vote for Donald Trump?’ The prospect of America’s ‘id’ as president is alarming, as is the prospect of rising oceans and unbreathable air, the return of typhoid and polio, unending war in the name of freedom. A world like this would truly represent the triumph of the irrational.
To all of this I might answer that the irrationalist insurgence is not a sign of rationalism's decline but a result of its dominance. It's a revolt against authority, based on a suspicion (sometimes justified) that authority is both dishonest and self-interested, and an intuition that rationalism doesn't cover the waterfront of human life. And it might have been mitigated if the rationalists had been more tempered by their counterparts, the humanists. If rationalism had given more ground to the holistic, poetic aspects of human being, it might not have lost so much ground in the war against populism. The repression of ego left id and superego to battle it out. In other words, relegating the heart made room for the gut to mount a challenge against the mind. And gut is winning.