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, â€œFrance will remain a country of freedom.â€
…â€œSome have wanted to link the influx of refugees to Fridayâ€™s acts of terror,â€ Hollande said, evoking calls by French and American conservatives to close the borders to fleeing refugees. But he declared the nation has a â€œhumanitarian dutyâ€ 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.
Europeâ€™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:
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.