Our coddled First World Problems students at the universities, like all leftists, are children of privilege.
We did not have leftists in the West until the French made life so much better for the poor that those r-strategists outbred their superiors so greatly that revolution was sure to follow as soon as a crisis occurred that could be blamed on leadership and not merely overpopulation. Leftists follow this model: superior forces create and stabilize, leftists breed like yeast, then blame their superiors and take over. Classic rebellious child with too much free time scenario.
Humans do not like to face reality. That is in fact the primary challenge of life itself: learn reality. Deal with what is actually there, instead of your thoughts about it, your interpretive dance, your blogs or excuses. Politics falls mostly into the latter camp of “excuses.” Excuses for the lower echelons of society and their low performance. Excuses for those who act in criminal ways. This disguises the fundamental psychology of the leftist, which is excuses for himself.
Leftism demands equality but what it actually wants is state-sponsored individualism. Or: I don’t have to discipline my inner monkey. I can be as useless as I want to be, so long as I tip-toe around the rules and don’t get caught, but I do not have to participate in any kind of plan, social standards or even measures of competence. I am perfect, just the way I am, and no one can tell me “no” — in fact, the rest of you should get out of my way because I am the original Precious Snowflake.
If you want to know why Leftism is eternally popular, it is this attitude. Like Mr. Rogers, it tells people they are OK just as they are. There is no need to discipline themselves to stop their inner monkey from raging, or to shape their minds to understand reality outside of them, or even to worry about the consequences of their actions and be accountable through them, which occurs before those actions through a mental process we call “morality.” They just need to be. They’re beautiful just for being humans and doing the monkeyshines that humans all can do because they’re lowest common denominator: dancing, making “art,” copulating, chatting, getting drunk, eating and posting to Tumblr.
This is what conservatism is up against: inertia. Liberalism validates human behaviors that are useless by declaring them “equal” — just as important as — heroic acts, essential acts and exceptional acts. Liberalism is the anti-Darwin. It argues that people do not need to improve themselves at all, but most be easy on themselves. It is anaesthesia for a dying species. It says don’t worry about the obvious failure that we are undergoing, just bend over and think of England.
The conservative impulse toward religiosity comes from this realization. We see life as a moral battle for mental clarity. We recognize that most people are still monkeys, and by most we mean 98.6% or so. They live through their impulses, are in denial about realities, and their agenda is wholly based in a fascination with their own appetites, lusts, shopping and desires. As a result, they have abdicated the higher mental functions that allow planning and creation, including of civilization itself.
Zen Buddhism bases much of its approach on the same idea. To a Zen Buddhist, the problem of life is that most people are mentally undisciplined monkeys who are destructive by the very nature of their careless, solipsistic, self-obsessed and oblivious behavior. This is the essence of the Zen master slap: “Wake up! Reality is out here, not in there, inside your head! Your life is illusion and you have no idea what you’re doing!”
In the West we refer to this tradition as esotericism. An initiate, usually a teenage boy, is put to a quest as part of his study. On that quest, he has to snap out of the umbilical sac of solipsism and start looking at life not just as real, but through a critical eye. What are the actual motivations of others, despite what they say? What are the strategic positions people take and what are they protecting? What does this tell us about them? You may notice that the same questions arise in the analysis of religious texts, or in a good literature degree, which you can still get in some rare places. They call it critical thinking there.
The point of this is that the appeal of liberalism is entirely a lie. It justifies ignoring the essential task of life and replacing it with an easier task. This appeals to idiots, lower castes, and neurotics, and these types will never stop pushing this agenda. In sensible societies, those in power are aware of this and constantly exile such people. You cannot do that with the rule of law; you need the rule of exceptional and far-sighted men. If you stop, the insane people build up and then they overthrow you with superior numbers, since oblivious people think they are immortal — after all, they’re solipsists — anyway and so are prone to attack in thoughtless groups.
With this in mind, the last thing we want on a college campus or anywhere else is a “safe space.” Safe spaces are solipsism bubble zones where people can go if they fear someone might mention reality. In safe spaces, people can bloviate on about their ideological ideas without being contradicted by someone who has noticed flaws in their narrative, i.e. reality peeking through the carefully-constructed artifice. Safe spaces are designed to blot our reality and replace it with a giant neurotic and morally flatulent human mind. They are the triumph of narcissism, fear and intolerance (of reality!) over common sense, logic and survival. They are suicide cults.
Bashing college kids for this is like swatting a piñata or shooting fish in a barrel. We all know they are delusional; they’re kids with no experience of the world. They are simply acting out the stuff their professors taught them, and in this case, their professors are neurotic Generation X-ers re-enacting what their neurotic Me Generation parents taught them happened in 1968. But looking past this easy game, we should think about safe spaces in general, and the tendency of societies to make them.
The first people to found a society are conquerors, which means both warriors and nerds. The warriors clear away the other monkeys who will steal, sabotage and subvert — they call this genocide sometimes, but it’s the same reason that American settlers killed Indians and Israelis blew away Palestinians — and the nerds start putting together irrigation, sanitation, libraries and other essential things for civilization. At some point they both look at each other and shrug. The basics are done. Now all that is left is to improve what is there. And here is where the problem enters.
When a society is first minted, it has a goal: push back against that which holds it back, including nature and ignorance. This is a forward moving task. After it loses that simplicity, it needs a new task. The most obvious is to try to protect its people from the dangers of life. This is a backward moving mentality, and it always takes the form of looking at who is hurt or gets hurt and trying to “fix” situations that are the consequence of these people’s inabilities or solipsism. This is the start of the idea of safe spaces; society itself is the safe space.
I say we undo all of it. Abolish the FDA; take whatever drugs you want and if you die, we throw you in a ditch. Remove the warning tags from mattresses. Get rid of speed limits, DUI laws, handicapped parking, movie ratings, the lot of it. Those things create a mentality that destroys civilizations because they create an intermediary in place of reality. People no longer worry about the consequences of their actions, but whether those actions are legal. Get rid of all of it. 99% of our laws need to go into the dumpster with the rest of the “think of the children!”-style neurotic rule-making.
We need a society where for every action, the person making it is thinking, “What will happen when I do this?” Not lost in a fog of assurances about how the government would ban it if it weren’t safe, or how he has guaranteed health care, or how his friends think and that might make him a YouTube star. Have him thinking solely about the results of his actions. Don’t give him a forest of laws and nagging nanny moral codes so he can attempt to justify what he is doing. Measure it all by the outcome. If you try to shoot Hitler and you blow a hole in an orphan instead, it really is not different from killing that orphan any other way. Reality matters. Consequences matter. And in the end, you either helped a situation or hurt it — but helping can be hurting, if it enables weakness, stupidity and solipsism to thrive.
I remember the rise of the administrative state back in the 1980s. Suddenly there were warning labels on everything. As a result, people stopped thinking about the consequences of their activities. They just looked for the warning label and, if they didn’t see one, went ahead. If things went wrong, they blamed the government: “There should have been a warning label!” Government gladly paid the fines from these lawsuits because it saw an unstoppable, infinite way to justify increases in its power. All they had to do was find some poor idiot who couldn’t figure out that pulling the pin on a hand grenade and inserting it in his rectum was a bad idea, and boom! another 400 bureaucrats and cops were hired, another 10,000 lines of regulations and twenty federal laws were added, and the great leech-off-society parasitic jobs program called Government could continue.
What encouraged them further was the fact that people — who are basically monkeys — liked this condition. It meant there was always someone else to blame for their own stupid acts, and they could “save face” by blaming the government or some poor manufacturer for whatever stupid thing they did with a product. If the mattress does not tell you not to light it on fire and ride it into a pool of gasoline, your life-changing injuries are certainly not your fault, Mr. Plaintiff!
I’m sure the original intent behind these laws was to protect the poor and stupid from destroying their lives, but like any true evil, the laws took on a life of their own (like a cancer, come to think of it). The dumbing-down of our society really began at that moment. No one was any longer accountable for understanding reality and making the moral decision to ensure their actions did not end in bad results. Nope: there was a warning to read, and someone to blame if it went badly, and because Government was now running the show, there was always some kind of benefit to apply for when you maimed yourself and could no longer work.
No consequences for anyone. That’s what a safe space is, and that’s why all of them should be abolished.
A young woman attended a rock concert in Paris and terrorist guerrillas attacked the civilians inside. She wrote her thoughts on the event in James Joyce style stream of consciousness, and the media picked it up. It seemed to express something that others also wanted to express.
Here is her text:
You never think it will happen to you. It was just a Friday night at a rock show. The atmosphere was so happy and everyone was dancing and smiling. And then when the men came through the front entrance and began the shooting, we naively believed it was all part of the show.
It wasn’t just a terrorist attack, it was a massacre. Dozens of people were shot right in front of me. Pools of blood filled the floor. Cries of grown men who held their girlfriends’ dead bodies pierced the small music venue. Futures demolished, families heartbroken. In an instant.
Shocked and alone, I pretended to be dead for over an hour, lying among people who could not see their loved ones motionless. Holding my breath, trying to not move, not cry — not giving those men the fear they longed to see.
I was incredibly lucky to survive. But so many didn’t. the people who had been there for the exact same reasons as I — to have a fun Friday night — were innocent. This world is cruel. And acts like this are supposed to highly the depravity of humans and the images of those men circling us like vultures will haunt me for the rest of my life.
The way they meticulously aimed at and shot people around the standing area I was in the center of without any consideration for human life. It didn’t feel real. I expected any moment for someone to say it was just a nightmare.
But being a survivor of this horror lets me shed light on the heroes. To the man who reassured me and put his life on the line to try and cover my brain whilst I whimpered, to the couple whose last words of love kept me believing in the good in the world, to the police who succeeded in rescuing hundreds of people, to the complete strangers who picked me up from the road and consoled me during the 45 minutes I truly believed the boy I loved was dead, to the injured man who I had mistaken for him and then on my recognition that he was not Amaury, held me and told me everything was going to be fine despite being all alone adn scared himself, to the woman who opened her doors to the survivors, to the friend who offered me shelter and went out to buy new clothes so I wouldn’t have to wear this blood stained top, to all of you who have sent caring messages of support — you make me believe this world has the potential to be better, to never let this happen again.
But most of this is to the 80 people who were murdered inside that venue, who weren’t as lucky, who didn’t get to wake up today and to all the pain that their friends and families are going through. I am so sorry. There’s nothing that will fix the pain. I feel privileged to be there for their last breaths. And truly believing that I would join them, I promise that their last thoughts were not on the animals who caused all this. It was thinking of the people they loved. As I lay down in the blood of strangers and lay waiting for my bullet to end my mere 22 years, I envisioned every face that I have ever loved and whispered “I love you” over and over again reflecting on the highlights of my life. Wishing that those I love knew just how much, wishing that they knew that no matter what happened to me, to keep believing in the good in people. To not let those men win.
Last night, the lives of many were forever changed and it is up to us to be better people, to live lives that the innocent victims of this tragedy dreamt about but sadly now will never be able to fulfill. RIP angels. You will never be forgotten.
You don’t come to Amerika for the usual tripe and drivel that is designed to make you feel better about your society failing by blaming scapegoats and inventing unicorn crusades to “fix” the wrong problems. You come here for the skinny.
There’s one word to describe the above:
This is not an attack on Ms. Isobel Bowdery, who realized her career was about to get a huge bump if she caught some fame, so she wrote down the right clichés in the right order expressing the right sentiments, illusions and pretenses. She is no different than a good student writing down what his teachers want to hear and handing it in.
But still the same, this is comical. It’s someone writing from Teletubby World where everyone is a happy little bubble, dedicated only to their own introspective personal drama, and the world is just a backdrop for that which never changes. It is the typical effete, narcissistic and oblivious outlook of late civilizations.
In Isobel-Teletubby World, society is not a struggle for anything. It exists for the citizens to do — to do whatever they want, of course! There are good people, and bad people, and the good people never hurt anyone or stop anyone else from doing anything. Nope, even when attacked in a theater where they outnumber the attackers 400 to 1, they will never step on someone else’s dream. No, it’s better to die in clumps and then engage in emotional self-expression on Facebook.
No one wants to use such strong language, but people in the West today are spoiled brats. They think the world exists for them to make the choices they want on an arbitrary basis, and that if it it does not, it is just mean. Upside-down frown goes here. They have a strong moral commitment to the idea that it should be a nice place where everyone nice can do whatever is nice and everything will be fine and maybe we will never die.
But that’s not real, or even all that interesting.
Nietzsche tells you to blame Christianity, and surely the good/mean fantasy dichotomy could come from that. Others blame commerce, and definitely the idea of life being like a shelf of products with arbitrary appeal fits in there. I tell you that what you see here is what happens when people no longer have a goal and have taken society for granted: the narcissism which is always lurking in each one of us comes out. This narcissism predates our passage from ape to human. It is the oldest sin, which is for an animal to assume that because he conceives of the world through his mind, it exists in his mind. If sin is error, this is the grandaddy of errors: a denial of reality.
And yet that denial is the idealized behavior in the modern West. For Isobel, the world does nothing but exist as a support structure for personal drama. It is a world of feelings that can be shared with other people (if they’re “good” — meanies don’t have feelings). It is brutally human to use our ego as a counter-attack against our smallness, and to not claim but treat the world as if it is a giant buffet for us to sample, which requires we imagine it has no significant consequences. Sure, we cannot murder or rape, and we must go to work and pay taxes, but most people avoid those crimes and do those activities anyway so that is not an imposition. To someone in that frame of mind, an act of terrorism seems like the hand of Satan reaching in to paradise for no purpose other than cruelty.
Most voters not only live in this nonsense world, but they created it by refusing to listen to any candidate who does not endorse it. Intellectually, it is baby food; like the half-lies of a salesperson who just needs to make enough fools buy his product for him to have that house in the suburbs. Morally, it is deceptive. We all know the world cannot be this simple, but we want it to be. As soon as we have the wealth and power, we insist that everyone else agree it is this way, so that we “feel” safe even if we are not.
What Isobel expresses is a consequence of this control, or the forcing of everyone else to act as if reality is not real and the fantasy world is the ultimate reality. Like domesticated animals, they do not fight back, but go trembling to their doom. They blame the instrument of their demise, not the illusion that led them to this point. Control creates a mirror image in citizens, much like their mirror neurons learn the world around them by mimicking its structure. People who are controlled come to rely on that control, in the Stockholm system way, but also blame that control for all their problems, which is why they like it. People enjoyed the Soviet Union because no one was ever accountable for their own behavior; the State was, because it had total control. That was why individualists supported it in the first place: much like regulation of an industry removes the onus from that industry to act responsibly, since they only need to comply to laws, total control removes responsibility for one’s actions and accountability for the motivation behind them. Under total control, everyone is a rodent acting in self-interest and no one ever is to blame.
Our method of control in the West is what Isobel expresses in her message: socialization, or people getting along with others. Teachers love it when everyone gets along, as do housewives and Republicans. They don’t want to see conflict, because conflict is “bad” because it interrupts our perfect solipsistic paradise. They want everyone to be nice and to exclude those who are “mean,” which translates to conflict never arising because we are in good conformity. No one will raise a controversial issue for risk of being not-nice. Everyone will agree everything is fine because they want other people to like them. The only things that can be attacked are those that people universally agree are mean, and those are uncontroversial, so people use them merely to signal their own nice-ness. It is a perfect world, a perfect illusion, and it is how societies generally self-destruct: they domesticate themselves, lose their ability to respond to reality, and then fall apart when reality intrudes.
Let us look at the big point that Isobel makes:
It didn’t feel real.
I’m sorry, is this planet earth? The one that has been wracked by wars from its earliest days, where Barbary Pirates roamed the seas and bandits lurked in wait throughout the countryside? The one where various ethnic groups are always murdering each other, frequently successfully, and the globe is a map of bones? Or even the place where drive-by shootings and knife fights are common? What about the periodic outbreaks of disease, the huge hurricanes, or the asteroid that will eventually, statistically speaking, eliminate all life here? The only way one can have such an outlook is to exist in a constant state of denial.
And yet Isobel is not the only one.
Lunatic socialist president Francois Hollande doubled down on the illusion by saying that France not only refused to awaken from the dream, but would enforce the dream on its citizens further in order to keep them asleep:
Hollande said the nation will honor its commitment to take in 30,000 refugees over the next two years, assuring the mayors, “France will remain a country of freedom.”
…“Some have wanted to link the influx of refugees to Friday’s acts of terror,” Hollande said, evoking calls by French and American conservatives to close the borders to fleeing refugees. But he declared the nation has a “humanitarian duty” to help migrants escape war-torn Syria.
Whatever happens, we must be nice. And if our policy is completely nonsense and stupidity, we’ll generate a whole lot of rules to bind it so that people feel better about it. Reality? That’s on another planet, man, no one is paying attention here anymore.
But this is typical. As Richard Fernandez points out, people would rather save the pleasant illusion that feel a small amount of pain by facing reality and acting on it:
The dilemma the West now faces is that it cannot survive on the basis of the platform which its elites have carefully constructed since WW2. They are being beaten to death with their own lofty statements. They must either continue to uphold the vision of open borders, multiculturalism, declining birthrates, unilateral disarmament and a growing state sector at all costs — in other words continue on the road to suicide — or retreat. As recent events at American campuses have shown, when faced with the choice of saving the Left and saving the actual world, the odds are that “the world” goes over the side first.
What needs to be done? This isn’t rocket science. It’s clear that cultures do not mix, but can only assimilate each other after a long period of conflict, which means that diversity is both suicide and genocide. The solution is to shut the borders, deport anyone who is not indigenous genetically to each country, and then resume what worked before the mass appeal madness of the liberal century, namely building up culture and the moral and intellectual quality of individuals instead of relying on liberalism and its illusions to be our substitute.
Our world is formed of three forces — diversity, democracy and pluralism — that are different faces of a single force, individualism. Individualism is the oldest evil of humankind because it always leads to narcissism; first, the individual says that his needs come before all else; second, when he is protected from accountability and consequences for his actions by the first postulate, he becomes narcissistic. Imagine a Hollywood star living alone in a vast mansion, with enough money that he must never face society, and you see the kind of spoiled, bored, empty and miserable brat that modern society creates out of its people. It does so with diversity, democracy and pluralism as methods of isolating the individual from accountability to reality.
As others have pointed out, reality-denial is a sin, and like all sins, it eventually becomes deadly, because like the asteroid it is statistically certain that over time, the piper will have to be paid — it is just not clear when. Like Malthus and other dire predictions of our illusion, its date of impact is unclear, but the inevitably is clear and just makes us more nervous and defensively vapid as time goes on.
Europe’s embrace of secular humanist multiculturalism as a belief system in place of religion and nationalism will not go away anytime soon, if ever. If it persists as the dominant Weltanschauung Europe is likely doomed. Change, if it comes, will emerge from popular opinion among the non-Islamic European masses, and the movements and parties that represent them, like the National Front in France, or Pegida in Germany. This is something that the elites will battle vigorously, possibly with both police and military forces. Civil unrest and the repressive measures that they may provoke may weaken Europe further, undermine democratic principles, and possibly make things even easier for Islamic radicals. But if European elites will tolerate popular change without imposing authoritarian crackdowns, Europe has a chance in this regard.
What no one will tackle is that this is a two-way relationship. Establish democracy, and the voters will demand illusion. Establish illusion, and you force people to engage in it exclusively. At that point they become domesticated animals, shaped by the hand that disciplines them, and when the control illusion fails, they simply fragment because they know no other way of life. This means that no one can even discuss the issue honestly because they are too busy emulating the past, and even that past is not what they think it is:
As Charles Cooke writes:
In the last two hundred years, there have been periods during which there were no immigration laws at all, and periods during which those laws were complex, and even evil. There have been periods during which outsiders flooded in, and periods during which the borders were all but closed. The system has been unpredictable: A Japanese expat heading for California in 1885 would have been welcomed with just an inspection; his grandson, applying in 1933, would have been summarily turned away. Romanticize it as we may, this area is just not as simple as we pretend it is. When a free-speech or Second Amendment advocate notes in absolute terms that this is a nation founded upon certain political precepts, he is correctly reminding his audience that the government is legally allowed to restrict his liberty in only a small number of ways. When an immigration advocate appeals to history, he is doing little more than begging the question.
What he doesn’t say here is that history runs in cycles, as de Tocqueville and Huntington noted, because democracy consists of pleasant-sounding ideas that unite people, but when they are applied, it turns out that reality is more complex than the universal homilies that attracted democracy. Mob rule is based on feelings, and then when those feelings produce disaster, there is a backlash. American immigration consists of repeated attempts to let in everyone, followed by disasters, at which point American law allowed people to either remove the immigrants or exclude them, at which point they self-deported. Europe has a similar history marked more by pogroms than democracy natterings, but the cycle remains the same. The domesticated sheep lunge after their feelings in order to show everyone how nice they are, and then it explodes in their faces and the remaining adults — a dwindling group over the years — take over and fix the mess.
The latest terrorist drama in Europe represents just another iteration of this pattern. In Isobel-Teletubby World, everyone is nice and pleasant and just wants to have a good time. But then some meanies appeared, and they have done something terrible and it is very sad, but that does not mean we should change what we are doing, because — unlike them — we are nice. Nice is sociable and should be rewarded through more socialization, and if another terrorist attack comes, it will feel just as unreal because we have shut it out of our minds, eyes slammed tight shut as we distract with mindless self-indulgence and hope for painless deaths.
I am not asking for five minutes of your time today to preach a gospel of kindness, equality and tolerance. If you’re looking for such a thing, you have plenty of other people to choose from. The whole world, from the Pope in Rome, to the President of Russia, the CEO of Coca Cola anyone you’ve ever heard of claims to stand for these values. These values are universal, they govern our societies, we see them as so self-evident that we never even question them.
As civilized beings, we take over certain values we interpret as self-evident. They are self-evident to us, only because we are genetically programmed to adhere to them. Our brains are smaller than those of our ancestors and our digit ratios reveal our genetically emasculated nature. It is us alone, who eschew violence. It horrifies us to our very core. What happens among chimpanzees on a daily basis hits the news when it occurs among our own specimens.
There is a simple factor here at work. The secret of our success is that we export violence. The industrialized holocaust that happens to the beasts delivered on our plate, or the various organisms killed to make way for our farms and plantations are kept out of the spotlights. To us this is not violence because it affects non-humans. To us this is a way of life. And as our numbers grow, so too grows the violence that we export.
After successful genocides, streets and landmarks are renamed, as new people take up residence, hoping that nothing will remind them of the slaughter that created space for them to live. So too, nothing serves to remind us of the vast forests that covered all of Europe. There exists no monument for the trees that were felled to grow the grain that sustains you. The giant oyster reef that once covered the bottom of the North Sea before its eradication through bottom trawling is memorialized only by a late 19th century British atlas. Nothing serves to remind the world of the violence we have inflicted on the entire non-human world. To us a new normal exists, of a sea composed of desert and a countryside composed of grain.
It’s easy for us to say that some hypothetical future person should not come into existence, especially when we reduce them to a number. Nobody would mourn if he heard today that the projections by the United Nations are wrong, that Nigeria by 2100 will not have 900 million people, but rather, a mere 800 million, because women decided to start using contraception. We don’t mourn those who do not come into existence, even though each and everyone of them is as unique as those of us alive today.
When more people come into existence, we collectively accept that this will be a mistake that we will have to cope with. We convince ourselves that something will show up in the near future that will turn what has been a zero-sum game played between humanity and non-humans since the dawn of civilization into a scenario where both can benefit, even as all evidence shows that the destruction accelerates.
But why should it be a given that only those who might be born in the distant future might be excessive? Could your neighbor’s pregnancy be an excessive one? Could someone you know be the product of a birth that should not have happened? We forget to take contraception, pregnancies happen, then our flexible and irrational minds adapt to reinterpret another burden as a gift. Margaret Sanger declared in 1919 that the world is already overpopulated. Such an observation implies that most of us should never have come into existence.
The question we ought to ponder is what added value the billions of us who now clutter up this planet serve. What is something you would genuinely miss, in a world with half as many people? To you there would be nothing but benefits. There might still be fish in the ocean. You might not have to spend until retirement paying back the debt you had to enter just to call a plot of physical space your own.
The second question to ponder is the inherent mediocrity of most of human existence. We value all human life that exists over non-existence, but why? When children are asked what they wish to do when they are adults, none of them respond that they wish to sit in cubicles and stare at screens. Nobody ever chooses to be born to a mother like June Shannon, who invites a man into her house who sexually abused her daughter. Those of us who are born into such circumstances tell ourselves that we have to cope with it, a price worth paying over non-existence.
When we are born into mediocrity, it is hard to acknowledge that our mediocrity should not exist, but perhaps we are capable of recognizing it when it affects others. If you imagine, that God informs you that by 2050, your nation will be identical to its current state, except for the addition of 50 million people who will live in slums, their existence characterized by illiteracy, open sewage streams and rampant rape, drug addiction and prostitution, would you consider that an enrichment? If not, then why should West Point, Monrovia exist today?
When you take a honest look at the world, how many billions of people live lives that you would not prefer over non-existence? Would you thank the Angel Gabriel, if he informed you that after hard negotiation he had managed to arrange a reincarnation for you as a young Ugandan girl who will have her breasts ironed by her mother to protect her against rape by adult men?
To me it is self-evident, that most people alive today should never have come into existence. Nor am I ashamed in any way to differentiate, to declare that some births were a better decision than others. It’s obvious to me that June Shannon should never have reproduced. If she had abstained from reproduction, some space would have been freed up in another family, where a girl might be born who would not be sexually abused by her mother’s boyfriend, a girl who might have an enjoyable life worth living.
There is a Dutch expression that soft healers make stinking wounds, meaning that solutions that avoid pain tend to exacerbate the underlying problem. Is it not a soft solution, to implore the teeming masses through soft rhetoric to abstain from suppressing their own misery by bringing more of it into this world, only for us to be ignored time and time again?
Africa will have three and a half billion people by 2100, forced to share a continent that will not grow in size with them. If those people had a say in the matter, most would not choose to be born in Africa, nor would they choose to be born as Muslims. They would make the same choice that most sensible people around the world would make. They would choose to be born in rural Scandinavia, to good looking upper-middle class friendly parents.
To abstain from cruelty, can sometimes be the biggest cruelty. The cruel question that has to be pondered, is whether it is time by now to start over with a clean slate. Most of humanity exists in a state of mediocrity, a mediocrity that has to destroy the lives of elephants, orangutans and other animals for us to be able to sustain it. Most of them will never be great poets or artists, functional literacy is the most they can hope for.
There is no reason to think that anything of genuine value would be lost if most people were to disappear today. The science of biotechnology would allow us to preserve those who are capable of producing societies worth living in, the type of societies that people risk their lives on the Mediterranean sea for to reach. I would say that it is long overdue.
It might seem like a massive cruelty to some of you. I can not help but wonder however, what the opinion on this matter could be of the orangutan mother who escaped with her child from the man-made fires that destroyed the Indonesian rainforest she lived in, only to be physically attacked by people whose village she fled into. Perhaps she is able to judge our species more objectively.
“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” – John 8:32
The truth is not comfortable. The truth is not easy. The truth is a bitter pill to swallow. One can no longer justify the comforting illusions one once held. You drink too much, or you are too fat, or you spend irresponsibly, or have character defects — most people cannot even stomach these simple truths. How can we expect them to digest the far more bitter fruit of the reality of Crowdism, parasitism, and the rather unfortunate fact that no, we cannot all just cannot get along?
Nikolai Gogol, one of the greatest Russian authors, towards the end of his life changed his liberal attitudes towards the Russian serfs, who he had previously advocated educating. Instead, Gogol told landowners that they must not beat their serfs, but instead of teaching them to read, the master must instead read Scripture to them, encourage Christian piety and become “a patriarch, the inceptor of everything, the vanguard of all things.”
But if knowledge is knowing the truth, should we not seek to educate everyone of it, to proselytize the anti-modernist way of seeing things, so that others may know the truth?
The answer is, of course, no.
Questions about truth become entangled with questions about education, and even more mixed up with issues of morality. It is true that it is worse to have a misleading or bad teacher than to have never learned anything at all. And it is also true that most people would likely misuse or misunderstand whatever they are taught. But these are questions of education, learning, exercises of the mind and not of the soul.
But education is not truth, and truth is not education. The fact that we conflate the two shows how deeply most of us have ingested the progressive narrative. What they mean by “education” has no relation to the truth: outside of the teaching of concrete theory like mathematics, it tends to be post-modernist propaganda. A false education can lead one so far down the path of nonsense that one may be completely lost. And when surrounded by an echo chamber of one’s peers in which everyone is trying to show off by demonstrating how “educated” they are, one can then never escape that false education.
A true education though, besides subjects like history and mathematics, is primarily the trivium, which is not comprised of knowledge itself but tools for assessing and applying knowledge: rhetoric for persuasion, logic to ensure consistency, and grammar to be able to communicate.
All of these things are separate from the truth. But what is the truth? In our context, what is true is what is in accordance with physical, logical, and spiritual reality. As such, the truth is something that can be checked and communicated by those who are properly educated- its existence is prior, and it does not depend on “educated” people to discover it.
But one needs to be properly educated to begin to understand more detailed formulations of the truth, and even more educated to engage with them philosophically and otherwise. So do the common people need to be educated, or know the truth, or both?
The answer is, to adopt the attitudes of Gogol. The common people need the truth; they have always needed it. Each man cannot be expected to be his own Aristotle. He needs the truth conveyed to him in a way that he can absorb, through myth and storytelling, and through heuristics, or homegrown wisdom born of experience. And he needs an example, a signor or patriarch to demonstrate to him virtue in action. This is why great epics like the Odyssey, Bhagavad-Gita and even The Bible exist: to tell us truth through concrete cause-and-effect histories like parables. These take the form of myth, but they show us the pattern of life: a decision presents itself, a character either overcomes his inner flaws to make a right decision or gives in to the wrong, and a result occurs that shows the consequences of his actions.
The best myths convey truth on multiple levels of understanding, and heuristics come into being due to wisdom being past down by those with concern for the truth. So must each man be educated? No, a thousand times no. But for each man who is educated, it will be his obligation to set an example to those beneath him and how he must conduct himself, and reinforce and re-sacralize the myth that teaches those beneath him each generation. Further, the gentleman, the signor, must allow and encourage the development of good heuristics amongst those who stay uneducated, understanding that if the right example and direction is set, the earthy wisdom of the common man will fill the gaps with heuristics.
So must each man be taught the truth, so that he might be set free? Yes, is the reactionary answer, yes, but in a way that matches his ability to understand. But shall each man be educated? No, is the answer. But if the example and environment is made that he lives in a place that loves truth, and loves wisdom, then wisdom will be all the education he ever needs.
Humans like to think they walk a fine line between metaphysically-defined good and evil, but what they really navigate is a path between success and error. Evil is a form of error brought on by human solipsism, akin to the ancient sin of hubris, where we assume our intentions are more important than the structure of reality, originally called “the will of the gods.”
Solipsistic evil can take many forms. One is failure, where we achieve nothing by chasing illusions and ignoring real issues; another is success, where we use our human powers to banish the mathematics of nature from our interactions and in doing so, create a greater failure. This often takes the form of entropy. Consider a company that by being ruthless and dominating the market, succeeds to the point where it drives others out. Now there is no longer a goal, or a challenge, and so the company lapses into apathy and incompetence, eventually failing. This is how humans fail by succeeding, by exceeding the natural parameters of an activity and creating a model of our dominating ego in the world.
As part of our naturalistic — or some might say “feral” — side, many of our greatest thinkers have recognized our need for the beast within. This beast does not aim for morality in our sense of success and failure, but perpetual conflict. While this seems wasteful despite its popularity in nature, it does achieve one thing humans cannot: it avoids entropy by keeping every activity forever in the middle between success and failure. In the natural world, species struggle for survival every day and this keeps them fit and adaptive. In the human world, we either abandon things or dominate them to avoid all risk, in the process creating our doom.
Some call this our “Faustian spirit,” and Date Jesus explores this idea briefly:
We are traditionally Faustian, conceptually and physically spanning time and place, as if prepared long ago to explore the cosmos and enjoy the wealth of having many homes, thankfully gifted with ability to tend each of them.
We civilize and make functional the most barbaric, hostile, or ruined land, but more importantly our spirit thirsts for perpetual expanse. This is our gift and curse, for it propels us beyond all limits and sensibility and affixes our focus on targets others dismiss as unattainable or never stir within enough to ponder, happily dull and incurious. This feeling for reaching beyond the present births our technology, art, exploration, and is the ever replenishing pool of our aspirations.
While I think his basic analysis of the Faustian is good, I think he confuses a few things with his term “perpetual expanse.” It is true we always need new mountains to climb when they become available, but that makes us entirely dependent on our external world, which is a smaller struggle than that of the world within. There, we need a more important thing: perpetual improvement in quality. Like an athlete trying to beat his own best time, we are forever trying to improve ourselves and our abilities. This bleeds over into technology, but some eternal skills like self-discipline, refined intelligence, meditative awareness and mental organization are the real battlefield where we must be victorious.
This desire for qualitative improvement is what drove Western Europeans to write the great symphonies and novels, to make art that most accurately showed our world in both realistic detail and transcendental setting, and to improve our philosophy to a point of clarity. Where others wanted to improve in quantity, and produce “new” ideas, we settled for taking what was there and improving it to a point of mastery, but never completing settling all questions because to do so would be to run ourselves into entropy. That has been reversed with Ideology, which democratizes intellect by making it externally-accessible through a few simple principles that cover all situations with extremely generalized, universal notions.
Our human tendency, when we fail, is to find something to blame. This substitutes for what scares us, which is that our brains have been hacked by our own failure to notice reality, and that one of the assumptions upon which our vision of the world rests is false or partially false.
In political terms, we create a scapegoat: a symbolic enemy who is responsible for our failure, and whose purging will result in our victory. This takes the most convenient form of human thinking which resembles our method of cleansing our homes, removing the bad and leaving only the good. It is still superstition much like a talisman in inverse, feeling that if we remove the totem of evil we will have removed the root of evil, which is in our error.
As Nick Land writes, the scapegoat psychology takes a pseudo-xenophobic form:
“Our entire history is something that’s been done to us by tricky outsiders — especially the bad stuff!”
This is not actually xenophobia, which is a healthy thing because all other groups differ in abilities and inclinations, and nature puts us into competition. Fear the Other; the Other means to remove you and take what you have. This pseudo-xenophobia instead takes the form of us casting out evils through a symbolic sacrifice, a scapegoat, in the form of a group in which we see similarity to our own mistakes. It is not Other that we cast out with this; it is our wishful thinking that we could exile what is wrong in ourselves.
Convenience in thinking revolves around what is easily and quickly comprehended, not what represents reality in any form. Convenience makes an idea more likely to be adopted by a group which is why large groups are usually wrong or insane in their choices. It also appeals to the weakness in individuals, a type of solipsism, that says what we intend to be the case should be the case and therefore, filtered through social pressure, “is” reality. Scapegoating is one of the many forms of human convenient thinking.
Scapegoats prevent victory. They take the place of the real problem, leaving it unsolved with the assumption that it has been solved. They encourage atrocities as the people involved attempt to violently rip out their own mental dysfunction through the symbol of the scapegoat. Worst of all, they point the finger in the wrong direction and, by being easier means of motivating masses, thrust all of our energy into the wrong places. When the scapegoat is dead and the people exhausted, those who notice the problem still remains will not be very popular.
We have spent too long looking for an external source of our misery. It is within us, which means that groups — the Rich, the Blacks, the Jews, the Whites, the Christians — are not to blame. It is inherent in our thinking as a group, and through that psychology, in our behavior. We must change the thinking and behavior simultaneously because they cross-influence one another, which requires both an individual and cultural revolution, and the strong monarchs who can protect it as it grows. Democracy will never allow us to escape the scapegoat.
When we discuss race, we often mean “ethnicity” or “ethnic group” or “ethny,” as some have advanced the term. However, ethnic group includes both race and the specific ethnic strain, which makes people nervous because they are unsure how to apply scientific definitions and feel uneasy using animal or plant terms for human beings.
In The Race FAQ, John Goodrum used the term “subspecies” to designate animals which can interbreed with others, but have chosen not to, providing a population with distinct genetics:
Whether a population has had a unique natural history can be inferred from its degree of differentiation with respect to other such populations. The arbitrary division of an interbreeding, genetically unstructured group will result in subgroups that are genetically indistinguishable, whereas populations that evolve more or less independently for some length of time will accumulate genetic differences (divergent gene frequencies, private alleles, etc.) such that they “exhibit recognizable phylogenetic partitioning.”
His point is that a group which separates itself from the rest in terms of its breeding will over the generations come to have a unique pattern or collection of traits, despite still being part of the same species. This explains the duality of race: how ethnic groups can be so different, yet can clearly reproduce as part of the same species. This has led many scientists, who look for signals and not causes, to exclaim that race does not exist, when the truth is much simpler.
Another definition in particular offers an insight:
Cultivar, n. A variety of a plant that was produced from a natural species and is maintained by cultivation
A cultivar, in other words, is a group of plants or animals selected for some traits which are then enhanced by selective breeding. It starts as itself, but then improves in quality rather than changing form, and by so doing, isolates those traits so they become strong. This creates a pattern of unique traits which together make up what it is.
While this gets us around the chicken-versus-egg problem (which came first) of genetic traits, it also points us toward the future of any cultivar. It either keeps refining itself in quality to maximize its traits, or stagnates, and through a process of degeneration loses those traits. For example, plants grown only under controlled conditions gradually lose their quirks and chaotic tendencies that help them survive in the more varied environment of the wild.
Who does the cultivating? We do, the members of the group. A cultivar starts with several noticed traits which are preserved; similarly, a race or ethnic group starts with unique abilities which lead certain individuals of the larger species to find commonality with one another, and come together to form a breakaway population. The seed of a new ethnic group may be a moral belief, or even a technique for adaptation. Over time with gradual improvement the group becomes isolated and distinct.
All of the above point to a new way of looking at race and ethnicity. Ethnic groups are not random events, but cultivation by humans of themselves. They represent unique traits that show a strength not merely for adaptation, but adaptation according to some utility or ideal perceived by that population. If admixed, they are destroyed. If kept domesticated, as modern society and totalitarian centralism do so well, they lose their traits outside of obedience and become weaker. Like all good gardens, the one in which a cultivar is planted must be tended carefully, with an eye towards not merely next season but every season thereafter.
Recently, some European cardinal or other made the statement that European needs immigration because its blood is tired and exhausted and its needs replacing. We hear this trope frequently, which means it is most likely a distraction or deflection and surely a lie, so it is worth looking into.
The idea of blood being “exhausted” — as if its vitality was spent in the past — makes no sense. Children are born as vital as ever. Something crushes them in adulthood. This suggests, then, that our problem is not exhaustion but a society which is exhausting, or “grinding its wheels” by engaging in unnecessary, unproductive and paradoxical activity. This describes modern society beautifully.
Most environmentalists attack modern life as “not natural” which quickly collapses on them when it is pointed out that very little, natural or human, is actually “natural.” It is just a talking point, an advertising term. But looking closely at it, it is self-defeating. Working all day to support parasites, commuting through ugly cities, shopping among commercial charlatans, marrying whores or liars, and listening to absurd nonsense from government and media that our fellow citizens will enforce on us as truth or ostracize us… well, that is exhausting.
In other words, our problem is not that our blood is tired but that our leadership — including this nitwit religious leader — is tired, because they are repeating slogans and ideas which conflict with reality but even more importantly conflict with what we need. We need more time for family and friends, being outdoors and working on things meaningful to us, and less time in meetings, filling out paperwork, shopping, watching television and indulging in other activities which are nonsense proxies for real life experience.
We can lose our tiredness right away by facing the difficult truths that are suppressed in this society: equality is a nonsense concept because most people are bad or at least nothing more than “talking monkeys with car keys,” the good should not work to support the less-than-good, and the good life does not consist of material goods but rewarding, engaging and challenging situations. Our one-size-fits-all bite-sized-pieces modern reality is as toxic as the smoke from our factories, and if there is any exhaustion it is in feeling that we must continue this way, and can thus be quickly removed.
Civilization creates its own fatal disease which is the predominance of popular notions over realistic ones. This disease proves difficult to diagnose because it is invisible, intangible and omnipresent. Like a virus in a computer network, it spreads through any and every program, elusive in its lack of a center to attack.
If these writings seem to rage too much against scapegoats — The JewsTM, “thugs,” The Rich, government itself instead of the voters who empower it — it is to avoid falling into the pitfall of popular notions, which perpetually prefer a tangible and easily-understood target to the more complex task of unraveling different threads and separating truth from lies.
Other popular illusions get short shrift sometimes but merit our attention, with two of them being the “fact”-based narrative and the obsession with details that demands lengthy research and vocabulary to merely discuss an item at a deeper level than “insight porn,” the pop culture styled contrarianism that creates a Thomas Kinkade level of philosophy: bright colors, simple scenes, and essentially a pleasant illusion avoiding the deeper problems within.
Many of us distrust the “fact”-based narrative for a simple reason:
There are no facts, only interpretations. – F.W. Nietzsche
That is to say: our language cannot convey wholly what is in reality, so it is inherently selective. This extends to fact-finding itself, which must choose facts to fit a narrative instead of assessing all facts and then looking to see what remains. A selective narrative produces a 300-page book of compelling ideas, where an assessment of all facts would produce a 10,000-page spacy analysis that few would read, until a final chapter appears which seems to magically make broad conclusions.
The left will always attack with the idea that conservative ideas are not “fact”-based, because the left specializes in cherry-picking data especially within a recent time frame, mainly because their goal is to explain away the unbroken historical record of failure to democracy, egalitarianism and subsidy-based economies (“socialism”). They have more to conceal than they have to say, so they specialize in generating “facts” that are in fact a very selective reading of reality, transferred into narrow categorical containers to produce a binary, and then spun into broad universal conclusions derived from relatively thin evidence.
Over the course of my life, I have seen both popular wisdom and the latest scientific studies fall. Not just arrive at a state of doubt; outright fail. This is because there are numerous levels of selection bias. Paul Krugman, a talented writer whose conclusions are often wrong because they are based on false assumptions, hits the nail on the head — broken clock right twice a day, perhaps — with this statement:
It doesn’t matter that the skeptics have been proved right. Simply raising questions about the orthodoxies of the moment leads to excommunication, from which there is no coming back. So the only “experts” left standing are those who made all the approved mistakes. It’s kind of a fraternity of failure: men and women united by a shared history of getting everything wrong, and refusing to admit it.
In other words, there is a selection bias among those who have become recognized leaders in their field, and it is not unfair to assume that much of this consists of destroying any ideas which conflict with their own. Their careers are based on their ideas; unlike even fifty years ago, when people were promoted based on their character and generalized abilities, in the current time people are vaulted to the top of their profession for attracting public interest. This leads to the second form of selection bias.
Crowd selection bias exists as a positive distinction, meaning that the masses reward what they find appealing. Note that these are not the masses as a whole, but the specific plurality which consumes news and intellectual products (usually books and movies). They ignore anything which is too complex or offends their conventional wisdom, but if they find a champion for an idea they find compelling, they will lift that person up through their purchases and attention. These heroes are the talk of the town for a few years, then are forgotten because their theories did not redefine the world. Thus Thomas Piketty passes into history and joins a list of other names I could cite here, but none of us would recognize them. They are past favorites, now comfortably serving as heads of departments or laboratories across the West.
In addition to the above selection biases, a type of negative selection bias exists which is fear of offending. We on the realist fringe are familiar with this one! Any idea that is too dangerous, or too insane — and the opposition likes to conflate these two much as the Soviets did — will be viewed as potentially incurring risk of offending either a plurality that is vocal or worse, a group or individual with protected pity-status. Those are dangerous and must be avoided, and so these are filtered out before they reach the surface.
Those three alone guarantee that “facts” as released into the mainstream will rarely provide useful information; “useful” is a better test than crowd favorite “valid,” which merely means placed in a form that is coherent. More likely, the facts issued forth will take the form of the far wall of an echo chamber, repeating what is already believed by excluding anything which does not fit that narrative.
Some useful facts make it through. These are either advanced by those who know their importance, or sneak past in a variety of guises. The best guise is insignificance, or the noting of a small detail and allowing others to interpret it. Another is as internal criticism within already accepted theory or ideology. Yet another is the infamous backwards attack, in which the researcher or writer advances a terrible argument in favor of an idea in order to show how hollow the idea is. These different types of guises are generally employed by those who work for the crowd heroes who run the departments.
None of these filters however disguise the raw problem with “fact”-based reasoning: the facts are chosen in order to be popular, and the method is bad. Modern science consists of surveying data, picking a factor to look at, and implying a causative relationship through statistical means that address only the data itself. Inherent in that are a number of assumptions which rely on universal tendencies to data, or similarities between context based on the form of information and not the specifics of its derivation, and these fail time and again. No one cares: this is an industry, not a moral crusade to be realistic.
On the other side from the “fact”-based narrative is another narrative which seems to be different: the detail obsession of specific domains of knowledge and vocabulary, which hold that to discuss a topic you must have read thousands of pages of dense material and mastered many small nuances. If humans retained their ancestral intelligence, they would see this for what it is, which is job protection through obscurity. Remember “security through obscurity,” the idea that if you make your computer products cryptic enough no one will hack them, despite the fact that hackers specialize in the cryptic because much like regulation offers more options to cheat, it offers more different wrinkles to exploit? Job security requires that specialized workers make their tasks so obscure and rife with tedious detail that outsiders cannot critique, oversee or redesign them. This perpetuates “the way we do things around hereTM” in perpetuity, guaranteeing jobs but reducing competitiveness. The same is true of academics and other thinkers, who want to claim ideographic space on the great blueprint of known ideas, and the defend it by making entry impossible, and forcing those who would enter to adopt enough of the language of the discipline as to force them to accept the specific precepts of its owners.
Within this topic, I side with the philosophers: all ideas reduce to a very simple core, and there are not many actual ideas, so generally what one finds is a variation on a previous idea. What is needed is not an in-depth look, but a clarification of the basic concepts in as few words and specialized terms as possible, or discussion is moved into a domain controlled by the specific knowledge which makes extrusion to other domains of knowledge nearly impossible. Academia hates this idea because it would put the philosophers and literature teachers back in charge, and since the best of those tend toward realism, they would focus on collapsing the empty spaces of rhetoric and domain-anchoring dogma and replace it with simpler, clearer concepts. Compare The Republic or Reverence to the average book of academic writing and the difference leaps from the page: good thinking expresses itself clearly in few concepts and then reveals their depth; bad thinking expresses itself in a nearly flat hierarchy of specialized concepts, hiding meaning within, then explains it through examples which only gradually reveal what is actually being said.
As always, the problem of humanity chases us here. Why is it that all of our knowledge is corrupted, all of our leaders are bad, and all great civilizations extinguish themselves? The only smart money says that a similar pathology, or repeated behavior that is indifferent to its results, explains all three. We got a hint of this in the news this week when attention whoring made the news:
Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) on Saturday backtracked from recent comments in which she seemed to suggest that Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) was getting more attention than she deserved by admitting what’s widely known about Washington: everyone seeks attention.
So that we all catch the tacit admission here, let us look at the normal, healthy leadership. A good manager seeks what must be done to succeed and then works to accomplish it. But as McCaskill says, democratic Washington acts on the opposite principle: it seeks what is popular, and then finds a way to justify it by arguing toward some recognized policy goal. In other words, we are no longer in the domain of leadership, but in entertainment, except that it uses the mantle of authority given to leaders to grant itself gravitas and extort money from us all. People, she said that politicians make their careers by attention-whoring; no one mentioned leadership or acting on what is important here. Grab headlines and win, just like the “fact”-based studies, and do what is right and be ignored.
In this light, our society resembles a closed circle: each of us does what is popular, so that we may become popular, based on what has been popular in the past. Surface-level alterations, such as what hipsters excel at like adding tubas to indie-rock bands and proclaiming it “a new sound,” are in fact affirmation of sameness in the same way the exception proves the rule: if the only differentiation possible is aesthetics only, then no other idea is possible, which affirms the predominance of the idea. This closed circle means that we as a society are like a dog chasing its own tail, entirely self-referential and oblivious to the larger reality around us. “Fact”-based argument, and argument from detail-obsessive specialized domains of knowledge, are methodologies which endorse and promote this outlook. Its end result is that reality is ignored and supplanted by social reality, or the collective consensual hallucination formed of what people desire, judge or feel — in other words, what they wish were true instead of what they deduce or induce to be true. This is the end result of all crowd selection algorithms, whether democracy, consumerism or simply social popularity, and constitutes a revelation of the implicit goal in those methods which is to obscure difficult truths by re-directing our focus elsewhere.
All of this leads to the point of the essay you are now (still?) reading: universalism creates subjectivity. Our theory is that in order to find objective truths, we must create an objective truth which is shared among people. However, by doing so, we grant a weight to that objectivity which guarantees it will be manipulated, and because people have different levels of the power of discernment — this is distinct from subjectivity; it suggests that we have different degrees of the same abilities, not different abilities which produce different truths — they will then use the same objective symbols and tokens but mean different things, gradually poisoning the objective truth by redefining its tokens. A better approach is to reject the objectivity/subjectivity dichotomy and instead take an esoteric approach, which may be summarized as “the truth reveals itself to those who are ready, in varying degrees according to readiness.” With esotericism, we expect no objective truth to be universal, and correspondingly guard against poisoning by cherry-picked facts (in “scientific” “studies”) and biased language controlling specialized domains of thought alike.
From an interview several years ago…
Nihilism, in a nutshell, argues that life is without objective purpose or value. This philosophy is something that has always seemed to cause controversy, as it seems society has always a some sort of fear when it pertains to Nihilism. Briefly describe what Nihilism means to you, and its relation to Parallelism.
What is Nihilism?
Nihilism is a philosophy based on the idea that reality alone is important. It rejects belief, faith, wishful thinking, ideology, morality and socialization as in any way a form of reality and/or “inherent”; these are human projections. All potential actions are choices we can make. However, nihilists are not relativists. We do not say all choices are equal, because equality is also a human projection. All choices are simply whatever their results are, because intentions exist only within the human mind and are not important.
Most people want to read into nihilism the typical kiddie-rebellion fatalism that infects the industrialized nations: “Nothing matters, so do whatever you want!” This is broken, because nihilism eschews the yes/no question of “matters,” since even having something matter at all is a choice. Nihilism also avoids the “do whatever you want” because to prescribe that is to give it a value. The only statement nihilism makes is that nothing is real except reality. Human projections are irrelevant because they are unrelated to outcomes.
Every action we undertake on earth is a choice. Do I eat the red-spotted mushroom? The utilitarians will say that if most people like eating them, you should do it; the formalists will say that if it’s socially approved, you should do it; the instrumentalists will ask if the goal of eating the mushroom is moral; the materialists of course will say that it depends on what comforts or wealth it gets you. A nihilist says to use the scientific method and look at what the whole of the results are. Will it poison you? Will it mislead others? Will it harm the forest? Will it bring about any gain of any kind? These are all choices, and must be considered in turn.
Nihilism is not a morality. Morality is what comes between humans and making choices. I can choose to commit crimes, but if morality exists, I will be reacting to the moral judgment of right/wrong instead of the consequences of my actions. This puts us back to measuring our acts by intentions, when we really should instead look at what the results will be. We then have to confront those results and say, “The result of this crime is that I’m going to force this person to work another 40 hours to pay for what I took, and my reward will be 10% of the purchase value, and it’s likely that more people will follow my example and commit crimes.”
That sort of measurement is emotionally heavier than saying some action is bad or good. If an action brings about good results, we can talk about those anticipated results by looking at past similar actions and pointing out the similarity. In the same way, if a proposed action is likely to bring about bad results, we need to only compare it to past events. “Last time we lit our cigarettes off the propane tank, we blew up three houses and a dog. Is that the result we want again?”
Nihilism is not negation. If there is religion in a nihilist world, it is esotericism, or the discovery of religious principles from patterns in our environment. If there is morality in a nihilist world, it is unceasing awareness of consequences. These things can exist, but they, too, are choices. However, as mentioned above, nihilism is not relativistic, so “it’s a choice” doesn’t mean “it’s accepted” as it does in pluralist moralist societies. It means instead that the burden of consequences is upon the person who makes a choice.
Nihilism is also not anarchy. Anarchy is a moral judgment that a leadership structure should not exist. A nihilist will reject the idea that a State is necessary, but by recognizing that leadership is a choice, forces us to consider the consequences of types of leadership versus no leadership. Nihilism does not choose what “ought” to be; it chooses what works. And so the first nihilist question to an anarchist would be, “Where can I find a successful anarchist community?”
Unlike ideological political systems, nihilism does not view wishful thinking — what “ought” to be, what society “should” do, or a moral jihad for equality — as useful. It questions causes->effects and by looking at effects, chooses to pick the corresponding cause (action) that can be undertaken to achieve those effects. As a result, it is pragmatist, or non-utilitarian consequentialist. This makes it more like the paleoconservative right and less like modern post-1789 state/ideology-based systems.
As a philosophy, nihilism recognizes that rejection of all values negates itself because it is in itself a value. Instead, nihilism views all values as choices. When these values are based on aspects of reality, they are nihilistic, but the creation of values like morality is dangerous because it removes us from thinking about reality and instead has us thinking about the words, symbols and relationships that comprise those values. A nihilist would suggest that the healthiest human system is one where we look at consequences alone.
Nihilism is ultimately a philosophy of affirmation. When we clear the human projection out of our heads, we are like children again, and can instead of reacting blindly to social projections, choose what we want out of life. As a conservative nihilist, I choose what Plato found to be the apex of human existence: the good, the beautiful and the true.
Why society fears Nihilism
I no longer believe that society exists. I should say instead that it’s a moving target. Societies have a life cycle just like humans. If you take care of your society, it can last for a really long time. If you do not, it self-destructs quickly. The remnants of destroyed societies are what we call third world nations. In each of these, there was once a prosperous society led by intelligent and noble people. These people pitied others, and so made life more hygienic, safer, abundant and easier for them, which resulted in incompetents outbreeding competents and dooming the society to failure.
During the early days of a civilization, there is no need for formalization. People recognize a shared purpose and set of values to achieve that purpose. It can be as simple as adaptation to a geographic area, but only if it includes an added dimension, which is the desire to not just survive but to thrive. Essentially, the best human value is laziness, because it causes us to want to improve our knowledge and self-organization such that we have more time to relax, ponder, create music, wage war, fall in love, etc. You know of Mazlow’s pyramid of needs; in my view, civilization begins in the upper parts of this pyramid where emotions and the need to use the mind like a weapon are found.
Unfortunately, over time, the aforementioned process of “helping others” leads to a proliferation of incapable people. These people do not mean badly, but they have a fatal flaw, which is that they are thoughtless. They will either overpopulate their geographical area or cause some other tragedy of the commons (an event where a public resource is exploited unto destruction because its cost to each individual is free) and as a result, will find themselves starving, diseased or in wars they can’t win. At that point they turn on their leaders, who are usually the people who had been trying to stop the decay and getting beaten back by the crowd of people who want to believe in what they wish were true, not what they can discern is true.
As a result, wishful thinking predominates up until the very end, where there is a sudden and conclusion confrontation with reality itself, and the civilization falls apart. It doesn’t just explode, but all the levels of civilized behavior drop precipitously until it is corrupt, dishonest, whorelike, ugly, dirty, commerce-ridden, violent, and directionless. It is usually ruled by warlords or a military junta because such disorder requires authoritarian government to keep it in line.
During this process people attempt to enforce their wishful thinking because (a) they want to stay in denial about the collapse and (b) this enables them to control others and get ahead through manipulation. As a result, they invent the myth of inherency. These words we use to describe things are not just token symbols we exchange in their view, but are the actual names of things. Our religions are not interpretations of metaphysics, but the whole truth. Government and collective approval are the only legitimate ways to make decisions. Good is a certain list of things; bad is anything that opposes it. Soon we are living in a world of “inherent” symbols that are human-created and often either arbitrary or deliberately controlling.
This is the origin of modern control. Unlike ancient control, which was cooperation based on having a hierarchy, or a decent authoritarian state, which is essentially paternalistic pragmatism (a form of consequentialism — the idea that we measure our actions by their results, not their intent — that, unlike utilitarianism, is based on reality for society as a whole and not the approval of a majority of its members, a subjective…or should we say “wishful thinking”….measurement), modern control is individuals controlling one another to keep any of us from upsetting the fragile balance created by a civilization dedicated to equality. In practical terms, “equality” means pluralism or that there is no right/wrong except for what is proscribed by the dominant ideology which we see as giving us equality and thus “freedom.” To a modern person, freedom and equality mean the same thing, which is pluralism or no social standards, which is naturally extended to diversity/multiculturalism/internationalism (these terms mean the same thing) and approval of every underdog group that doesn’t violate social/political norms.
Nihilism shatters this control by attacking inherency. As a nihilist, you realize that everything is indeed a choice. You can choose to deny reality. You can choose to eat feces. You can choose to shoot yourself in the head. All of these are possible choices, and there’s only two ways to make such choices. The first way is wishful thinking; the second way is reality-based thinking. Since we know wishful thinking varies with the quality of the individual, and it can be easily observed that most individuals (I’ll add the Southern hybrid between good-will and pity, “Bless their hearts!”) make most decisions poorly, it makes zero sense to pick wishful thinking, or a subjective standard. Instead, it is logical to pick a reality-based standard. The prole has trained themselves to say “but who decides?” and the answer to that is obvious: we pick the best among us. However, to a non-nihilist, that answer seems dangerous. Someone is more than equal? There are differences between people? But you can’t say that in polite conversation! You will never get laid!
This is why nihilism is controversial. It destroys control, but unlike anarchy, does not affirm the necessity of control through picking an opposite model. Instead, it tells us we have choices. We can choose a rising society, or by making a different decision, choose to have a dying one. The results of our decisions are clear because similar types of decisions have been made in the past, and we can compare cause->effect and see what effects our actions are likely to have. Most people get freaked out by that “deterministic” view of life, so choose to believe that they can choose an effect, and then assign to it any cause they want, thus they can do whatever they want and claim they “intended” to have a certain effect. Tee hee, aren’t they clever! Logicians will know this as a B->A error: If all A->B, then all A are B, but not all B are A (B->A). Mistaken cause->effect reasoning is the foundation of our declining society today.
On a simpler level, nihilism is controversial because people prefer pleasant/easy lies to complex/difficult truths. They want to hear absolute and universal guarantees, like the talismans of an ancient religion: just slaughter a lamb to Baal, and you will get rich. Don’t worry about your decisions, and trying to figure out if you do the right one; get the right symbol on there, and everything will be OK. Social decision-making works this way, interestingly enough. If I say nice things to my friend, and then answer with wrong information when she asks me a factual question, I don’t get blamed or seen as having failed because the link in the friendship is the social kindness, not accuracy. People want that level of acceptance-without-challenge extended to all portions of their lives.
What is Parallelism?
Parallelism is a solution to linear thinking. Nihilism has us thinking in terms of choices; parallelism has us realizing that to make these choices, we need to compare more than one factor out of many to consider the before-state and after-state of our decision. Humans tend to project their own arbitrary choices onto situations by choosing one factor out of thousands or millions to look at when evaluating a decision.
For example, “Will this new car produce more or less carbon output than my old car?” If you look only at that one factor, you’ll go buy a Prius, but then there’s the question of what environmental damage is caused by the batteries in the Prius and the energy required to make it. There are other questions to be asked as well: am I more likely to be in a wreck, and thus send both cars to the junkyard? Will this be as reliable as a “regular” car? Is a better use of the money required to pay for its higher cost to simply purchase a few acres of forest land? Can I drive less with my existing car? These questions involve the assessment of environmental impact only.
Parallelism suggests that decisions are made according to indicators found in parallel between multiple factors. This reduces the arbitrary nature of linear decision-making. As a corresponding notion, parallelism also suggests that structures exist in parallel throughout the universe. This includes the vertical dimension of complexity and the possibility of metaphysics. “As above, so below,” would be an expression of parallelism; another way to view it is that there are no structures in the cosmos which are radically incompatible with any others.
As such, parallelism is an attack on how most people conceive of religion. The average person is either (a) a materialist, believing that there is nothing but physical matter and thus enhacing physical comfort for people is the best goal (utilitarianism), or (b) a dualist, believing that there is some “other side” where all things are pure and clear and people will live in perfection in the order of God or gods. Parallelism suggests instead that any additional metaphysical dimension will resemble what is here, because in all aspects of reality, nature uses mirrored structures to create an architectonic or self-balancing order. The greatest is found in the least and vice-versa. It is a perfect design.
In addition, parallelism points out another structure in nature, which is a natural selection-like mechanism that is found in nature, but also in mathematics and thought. Roughly speaking, for any possible action there are many parallel impulses, and each one reflects a certain degree of maturation toward completeness of organization. The most organized tend to form a parallel harmonic level — imagine the parallels themselves as verticals, and a horizontal line being drawn where completeness of order occurs — and thrive, while others go away. Our thoughts are like this: we have many impulses in response to stimulus, and our brain selects those which are the most complete and which do not trigger any negative feedback loops.
Parallelism also has political implications, notably that it’s nonsense to base a society on a single arbitrary idea (equality, finance) when many other things need to be considered. We need to consider happiness, and more importantly, being a rising society where we’re constantly getting better at what we do, instead of a declining one. Physical health needs to be considered as well, as does environmental impact, as does social consequence. There is no “freedom” from any of the consequences of our actions.
Further, parallelism suggests that different civilizations go through the same patterns if they use similar forms of organization. This ratifies Plato’s “civilization cycle,” by which nations are born, age and die. Every nation that undertakes the attitude and organization typical of a senescent nation will become senescent; any nation that adopts the attitude and organization typical of a new nation will be reborn. Further, parallelism suggests that the fortunes of our societies are not caused by geography, but by where in the cycle we choose to put our effort. In addition, parallelism would have us thus separate these societies so that each can evolve according to its choices.
A parallelist worldview also includes that idea that we cannot divide leadership by separating it into different subject matters. For example, financial decisions have effects on the same things that legal or social decisions do, but so also do non-government actions like those of the media, religions, social groups etc. It makes more sense to organize government by the things upon which we are having effect, than by the flavor (religious, economic, social, political) of activity undergone.
As such, parallelism is an entry point to the birth stage of the cycle of civilizations, called Tradition, and is utterly incompatible with modernity. However, since parallelism is reality-based, it explains the consequences of choices rather than formulate an ideology toward their ends. For this reason, it is a useful tool for diagnosing modern stumbles and finding ways to work around them.
What are some important figures in history that have shared the same viewpoint, to some degree?
Every great leader in history has recognized these principles to some degree. Nihilism belongs to strategic realists like Niccolò Machiavelli and Kautilya, but also to clear-minded thinkers like Siddhartha and Eckhart. Parallelism has to my knowledge never been articulated as such, but was an understood (which is better than written down — it lives in the culture and, as culture shapes its population through natural selection according to Race-Culture Theory, becomes part of the genetics of that population) part of ancient cultures.
Because these viewpoints are more descriptive (analysis of cause->effect decisions) than prescriptive, or ideological and moral values imposed on a population to control it, they do not comprise an ideology per se but are methods that can be applied by anyone. Josef Stalin can be said to be a nihilist with his pronouncement “no man, no problem”; then again, Bill Clinton also displayed nihilistic thinking when he adopted the practice of creating his current political platform by reading the polls and selecting any idea that polled highly as something he would support. However, none of these consciously adopt a nihilistic or parallelist viewpoint.
I would imagine that artists share a good deal of these philosophies because artists are naturally outsiders, since their job is to notice what society cannot. Further, artists are naturally realists, because in order to portray life accurately, one must notice how it functions and not the type of social statements that can be made to gloss-over that or make it sound appealing. Finally, art is inherently meditative; meditation is the root of all understanding, since it calms the mind and allows exploration of all factors at once. To be an artist, you must find what is hidden in plain sight and style it so that it and any solutions needed to it are appealing, making people want to engage with it. Artists fight back against numbness induced by social conformity of behavior which in turn exhausts the mind of any possibilities other than obedience and reward.