Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Augustina's World.

I noticed this very moving comment over at Dalrock's yesterday on the subject of whether or not romantic love must precede commitment. 
I will wade in here, late, but hopefully I have something to add to the discussion. This is a subject that I know about from personal experience, as well as observing other women in similar circumstances to mine. So let me tell you a bit of my story. I am specifically responding to Deti and others who think that romantic love must proceed before a woman will remain devoted to her weakened husband.

I have never had romantic feelings for my husband. There was no falling in love period before we decided to get married. He asked me to marry him in a letter. We spoke over the phone a few times (he lived in a distant state), and I agreed to it. We were both socially conservative and I wanted a large family where I stayed at home and homeschooled the kids. This is also what he wanted, so I went for it. I never liked the dating scene and didn’t want to deal with it any more.

I agreed to marry him before I even met him. There were no tingles, no attraction, no romance. I went live near him and we spent a few weeks together before we got married. He was on the short side and slightly built. As far as sexual attraction goes, I would say it was neutral for me. He did not repulse me, but he didn’t make me tingle either.

Our wedding night wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t that great. As I said, neutral. I could work up a desire for him but it wasn’t there naturally. Immediately, our young marriage hit rocky shoals, because that’s just life. I immediately got pregnant and had difficult pregnancies which did nothing to help our sex life. He lost his job. We moved several times, across the country and in three different states. We ended up living with my parents. This did nothing to raise his sexual attractiveness to me. Hypergamy? What hypergamy?

Flash forward fifteen years or so. I had finally had it. I wanted to be the good Christian wife, and be submissive to my husband. But there was nothing to submit to. He didn’t lead. He drifted. It was like being on a ship, but with no captain to guide it. And the waters are full of icebergs, rocky shoals, submerged reefs, and vast stretches of the doldrums. It was terrifying to have my now large family on a ship with no one to navigate these waters.

He was passive, hesitant, didn’t lead as a father should, couldn’t discipline the children, and still couldn’t support his family. I was forced to make every decision, to consider our options with no input from him. I would wait for his input, request his input, but never got it. 

I can attest that a passive man who doesn’t lead will invite the fury of his woman. I was angry, furious, confused and resentful. He was, in addition to his passivity, also cold and difficult to reach. When I had tragic losses all I asked for was for him to hold me. He couldn’t do it. He could not comfort me. He also had a host of strange behavior, that I tried at first to pass off as eccentric. In short, he failed me in every way imaginable.

Finally, when I could take it no more, I considered divorce. I just wanted to be free of the emotional turmoil and unrelenting disappointment and resentment I felt towards him. But I did not consider divorce for long. I asked myself, what would it be like, to be free of him? And then I got a vision. There was my husband, sad, small and alone, in a dingy flat above a Laundromat, eating a bowl of ramen noodles. I knew that’s what divorce would do to him. And I couldn’t do it. I could not deprive this man of his family.

For all his faults, and they were legion, I knew all he wanted was a loving home for him and his children. I could not take that away from him. To do so would be bad, evil, disgusting, horrible and nasty. Marriage is fundamentally about trust. You make yourself vulnerable to the other person. You trust that they will stick by you, even if you are imperfect. I could not violate that trust, even if he didn’t live up to expectations. To violate that trust is evil. It is akin to murder.

So I dismissed the idea of divorce. Instead, I accepted my situation. I was forced, unwillingly, to be the leader of my family. I could not understand why. I did not want it, I was dragged to it, kicking and screaming (often quite literally). He didn’t ask me to be the leader, he just didn’t lead. So I looked for a career and went back to school and started working.

Once I accepted my situation, my attitude improved. I was less angry, less depressed, and more at peace. Not entirely, and this took a long time, but I felt noticeably better. It was only a few months after this that the full understanding of my situation came about. My husband’s brother was diagnosed with probably Huntington’s Disease. My husband was eventually diagnosed as well. 

This explained so much. Huntington’s is a neurodegenerative disease that affects all aspects of a person’s life: motor, cognitive and psychiatric. I would say all of our problems stemmed from the early symptoms of the disease. One of the hallmarks is loss of executive function. A man cannot lead a family without executive function. Poor executive function means no ability to make decisions, to initiate activities, to plan even in the short term. 

So what kept me loyal to him? A previous romantic attraction, that I could hold to? No. That was true of my SIL with her husband, but not for me. Hypergamy? My husband was not ever powerful, and never made much money. We were poor and dependent of family support through much of our marriage. I often felt embarrassed by his behavior. 

I don’t get much out of my marriage. For all intents and purposes I am like a single mother, and I often wish I had romance in my life. I have never had romantic love, and doubt that I will ever experience it in my life. 

Perhaps I am devoted to a higher cause: my family. I have devotion to him, and fondness for him. I recognize now what a struggle it was for him and that he is not at fault for his ‘failings.’ But it is not based on ‘tingles’, attraction, previous romantic feelings or any other such thing. I took vows to love and honor him, in good times and bad and in sickness and in health. So be it.

Now Dalrock, you don’t know me, so feel free to edit my overly long post. I am not in the habit of baring my personal life on the internet, but as it pertains to your post, I thought I had something to add. In short: romantic love or sexual attraction are not necessary prerequisites to devotion to a weakened and ailing husband.
It the God of Biomechanics had a prophet, it would be Roissy, but his chronicler would be Michel Houellebecq. The power in  Houellebecq's novels lay in their ability to describe individual atomisation whilst in a crowd. Loneliness is the ever present undercurrent, and though his characters may form relationships, there is a realisation that once they are old, ugly or otherwise "inconvenient," the relationships will fail.  His characters only "love" contingent on the other having "something"; be that looks, money or fame. Once that "something is gone", so goes the "love". Lana del Ray's current song speaks about this angst. It's an ode to Roissy. All love is fleeting.

Hence the power of Game. Game is, simply,  cultivating that "something" which women will find attractive. It is the recognition for the need and the accumulation of erotic capital. But here is the kicker; time, entropy and the process of aging are in opposition to the hoard, hence, all of us will get old, ugly and undesirable. Thus the obsession with staying attractive and avoiding old age. In the sexual market place without erotic capital, the god of sexual biomechanics kicks in and we are all alone.

But contrast this with Augustina's type of "love". Here, there is minimal or no attraction, even repulsion at times, yet it still sticks with the other.  
I don’t get much out of my marriage. For all intents and purposes I am like a single mother, and I often wish I had romance in my life. I have never had romantic love, and doubt that I will ever experience it in my life. 

Perhaps I am devoted to a higher cause: my family. I have devotion to him, and fondness for him. I recognize now what a struggle it was for him and that he is not at fault for his ‘failings.’ But it is not based on ‘tingles’, attraction, previous romantic feelings or any other such thing. I took vows to love and honor him, in good times and bad and in sickness and in health. So be it.
This type of love is outside the jurisdiction of the God of Biomechanics, it's a different type of love altogether, and it is this type of love that is the basis of Christian marriage. People may stick together out of habit, social pressure, convenience and whatever other utility, but what makes them stay when there is nothing in it for them at all?

Augustina understanding of her motivations leads her to describe it as a kind of duty to her husband, but it is not a duty. When contemplating his potential plight, should she leave him, she is moved to pity. It's not duty that stopped her from leaving her husband but rather a desire not to do wrong by him, not to see him suffer. Whilst she is not attracted to her husband she still cannot do evil to him and it is this inability to be bad which is the basis of her love and provides sustenance to her marriage.

Good and Evil are moral polarities which are expressed through our actions. Augustina's marriage is sustained by her possessing a moral polarity of good, thereby stopping her from harming the marriage and her husband. Her actions are not based on rational calculation but on moral nature. She has no self interested reason to stay but she cannot be bad to the marriage. She possess Caritas.

From the wiki article.
The love that is caritas is distinguished by its origin, being divinely infused into the soul, and by its residing in the will rather than emotions, regardless of what emotions it stirs up. 
Executive summary: Possessing Caritas means being good despite of what you feel.

It's this type of love which keeps the marriage going when there is no reason for it to keep going any longer: It's the love that lasts. It is also the main reason why marriages break up today. Most people lack the moral polarity of goodness that Augustina has and thereby divorce. As the prophets would have said, we have become evil and are now suffering the consequences for it.( Note, I'm not retarded. The culpability attributable to divorce is contingent on particular circumstances.)

Aquinas understood Caritas as a type of friendship towards God and Man. Personally, and I know I'm on very shaky ground here, I think Aquinas' conception of it was limited. I would go further than he does and assert that Caritas, expressed in act, perfects all things.(Including marriages which would otherwise fail.) Caritas should not just to be thought of as a friendship towards God and Man but extending to all things, including the physical and animal world. It is the foundation from which all good things come. A man (or woman) in possession of Caritas has some of the "stuff of God" in him and thereby becomes sort of "related by substance" to Him and, as a result, assumes a limited God-like nature. Augustina God-Loves here husband whist most other women flesh-Love theirs.

Now I harp on about Caritas (no one else seems to in this corner of the blogosphere) because the lack of Cartitas is THE fundamental problem ailing the West. Caritas makes you stick at it when the everything is bleak. We divorce, because we find our partners unattractive and thus screw them over. We let the Left win because we feel like lounging poolside. We allowed ourselves to be silenced by PC because we're scared of what other people may think of us. But look at the early Christians. They were flogged, tortured and fed to the animals, but they would not renounce the faith or do evil. They were full of Caritas, we are full of shit.

We've rejected God's nature and have reverted back to our default Pagan mode--look about you--except this time, with far less discipline than in the early stages of Ancient Rome or Greece.  We all know how Rome and Greece ended up.


As an aside, and pertinent to my recent posts on the role of language and conceptual development/retardation, the wiki article also notes the danger of conception failure due to the non specificity of the word "love"; 
Confusion can arise from the multiple meanings of the English word "love". The love that is caritas is distinguished by its origin, being divinely infused into the soul, and by its residing in the will rather than emotions, regardless of what emotions it stirs up.


Note that the King James Version uses both the words charity and love to translate the idea of caritas / ἀγάπη: sometimes it uses one, then sometimes the other, for the same concept. Most other English translations, both before and since, do not; instead throughout they use the same more direct English word love, so that the unity of the teaching should not be in doubt. Love can have other meanings in English, but as used in the New Testament it almost always refers to the virtue of caritas.
Rigorous minds, aware of the distinction will appreciate the contextual difference in meaning but weak minds, some in places of high authority will not. The Biblical meaning of love is quite specific to Caritas. I honestly wonder why English translators of the Bible did translate the word as Caritas and avoid confusion of meaning rather than using the word "love" which opens up the Bible to "Eat, Pray, Love" types of interpretations.

Deus Caritas est is translated in English to God is Love, but since love can have so many different meanings in the English language this translation is wide open to abuse. Since Caritas is a specific type of love with no equivalent English word, the translation, no matter how stylistically awkward, should be God is Caritas.  It's just another example of how limitations in language can sytmie concept development and further the development of bad thought.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Happy Festive Season my arse. It's Merry Christmas.

De-Christianising Christmas is not a new concept. Back in the 1940's, Mustachio had the same idea.

It didn't look like he was having much fun.

The Daily mail has run a couple of articles on the subject which are worth looking it.

How Hitler's Nazi propaganda machine tried to take the Christ out of Christmas.

Hitler's Christmas party: Rare photographs capture leading Nazis celebrating in 1941

The second article describes the Hitler's view on Christmas.
But the Nazi Christmas was far from traditional.
Hitler believed religion had no place in his 1,000-year Reich, so he replaced the Christian figure of Saint Nicholas with the Norse god Odin and urged Germans to celebrate the season as a holiday of the ‘winter solstice’, rather than Christmas.
Now Nazism, as I've shown before, is a left wing ideology tailor made for stupid right wing people genetically disposed System 1 thinkers. The Left has always waged a war against Christmas and whilst the Nazi ideology is almost dead, the other variants of Leftism still carry on with the project.  

I''m of the opinion that we are living in times akin to the 1930's and how this ends I don't know. But Hitler is dead and from Stalin's Russia comes a new respect for religion. The thousand year Reich and the Gulag have gone to dust.  On the militant secularism of the West remains.

It too will pass.

Even so, normally, I'd be rather pessimistic, given the cultural triumph of the Left, but this Christmas there seemed to be a "disturbance in the Force". Perhaps its only in my little bit of the world, but the kids seemed to remember Jesus's birthday, the parents seemed to be less apologetic for going to Church and more people seemed sick of the blatant materialism. There's a whiff of something in the air. That's not to say that the secularisation project is being reversed, rather, there is a tangible sense of pushback, be it ever so mild.

I don't know what 2014 is going to bring,  but let's say I think it's going to be interesting.

To all my readers I want to wish you a Merry Christmas and happy New Year. May God bless you all.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Peak Democracy.

Roissy was in fine form the other day with his take-down of the pyjamaboy and the associated left mindset. However, one bit of his piece disturbed me, and that was comment he quoted from Randal Parker's blog. "If we had real democracy":
The elite support democracy but democracy of the sort the Western industrialized nations have in which all but the most trivial decision-making processes have been removed from elected representatives and placed in the hands of unelected judges, bureaucrats, and trial attorneys.
Populism is in complete opposition to this type of democracy. If the people could vote directly on each individual issue, they’d support all these things: an end to almost all immigration, legal and illegal, and sending back people in the country illegally. Strong defense, but non-interventionist foreign policy. Strong tariffs on just about everything to put American workers back to work. Tough crime laws and severe prisons. Death penalties after one month. Gun ownership, but with licensing. Removal of vagrants from the streets. Forcing the mentally ill into institutions. Equitarianism not egalitarianism. Forced government jobs for everyone who can’t find one in the public sector. An end to affirmative action. You get the idea, they are on the opposite side of the elites on all issues.
Yeah, sure.

By and large, the elections in Western Countries are free and fair. Political and policy change is only an election away. If people were seriously pissed off about current policy they would look for alternatives. They don't. Third party politicians and their parties rarely make any headway. Every cycle of the electoral process offers a chance for change, and yet with every cycle the incumbents remain the same.

Conservative pundits, despairing of the slouch to the left,  proclaim that the public are being "tricked" and that if only the public could be better informed then people will see the errors of their ways. Bit like arguing that the way to lose weight is by more information about diet. Despite the plethora of diet books, magazine articles and internet sites, how exactly has that notion worked out?

The current political landscape is the way it is because voters have voted for it. Yeah; sure, the voters may complain about illeagal migrants but they sure as hell love the government largesse. And when it comes to a tradeoff between national good and personal interest it always ends up being a tradgedy of the commons.

Here in Australia, the electoral cycle would swing between the economic incompetence (usually through largesse) of the Left, followed by the unpopular but necessary austerity legislation of the Right. The "system" was balanced. However, the net result of several cycles of this political pattern has resulted in the Left being percieved as the "caring" party whilst the Right is seen as heartless amongst the mind of the local mass-man.  Astute Conservative politicians here have recognised that there is little to be gained by being fiscally responsible, especially when the electoral margins are tight, as it will ensure electoral wipeout and have also begun with the social security largesse.  The system is now in a positive feedback loop.

The reason why there is always some second rate tool heading a Western Government is because a good man is unelectable. Any good politician, genuinely concerned for the interest of his nation, given the current state of the West, would have to implement anti-populist policies and would thus be thrown out in the next electoral cycle. In trying to convince the people with rational arguments for his policies, he would pass the microsecond attention span of Joe Sixpack, and besides, X factor and American Idol are on. He's also boring. Not like the football.

Thought experiment. In imagining who pyjamaboy would vote for, is not Obama the perfect fit? Could you see him voting for Reagan or Eisenhower?

Mencken laughs to scorn.
The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of his personality. But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. 

The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
Hope and Change. Pyjamaboy-Obama. Menken's prophecy is realised.

And for the poor bastards who bled for democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan--I weep for thee. Here is the wiki article on Support for Gay Marriage in the U.S.

That even 50% of American would support a notion,that as little as 20 years ago was though of as ridiculous,  would confirm Menken's notion that American is nation of morons and repudiates Randal Parker's commentator. Amongst my friends here in Australia, I can't believe the amount of positive talk I'm hearing from people who only years ago thought such a notion insane.

The fact is that popular opinion on the subject has swung because the Left has, through a carefully thought out psyche ops, program "convinced" the "rational" voter. The convincing has involved nothing more that simplistic, childish pseudo-philosophical arguments, careful media presentation and soppy sentimentality. It was an appeal to the emotions and not the brain. Classic Advertising 101.  The fact that the public have fallen for them is not proof of Left trickery but public stupidity. Con men are most successful with morons. That's not to say that the Left are "conspiring to trick the public"---they believe their own bullshit, it's just that their smart enough to realise that when it comes to convincing the "common man" they've got to aim for heart, which is easy, since he hasn't much of a head.

In a democratic society, the foundation material of the body politic is an idiot.

It's high time Conservative, especially Christian commentators, re-evaluate their approval of non-qualified democracy. Remember how Christ was put to death.

That's right, by democratic vote.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Goldstein's Book was a Dictionary.

Following up on my previous post, it's important to note that while concept development may be hampered by a lack of word to explain a thought, a far more insidious mechanism by which the Cathedral stifles realthink is through word-concept manipulation. Ever wondered why the Cathedral prefers the term "undocumented immigrants" to illegal aliens. ( In Australia the preferred left term is "asylum seekers") or why "tolerance" means being unable to say no to anything you don't like? It isn't an accident.

Advertisers have long known that when it comes making a pitch for their product they have to appeal to the "gut instinct" more than the head.  When Ford or GM want to sell a product they try to associate the product with other stimuli that will generate positive feelings. They're doing this because it has long been recognised that a person's emotional state influences their cognitive thought patters and that decisions tend to be congruent with the induced emotional state. The important point to recognise here is that information is is processed at both an instinctive and cognitive level. The automakers want you to "bellyfeel" their product.

"Bellyfeel" is an important concept which modern political science has seemed to avoid (the philosophical implications would destroy democracy) but which most modern dictators have understood implicitly.   I've proposed the word autognosis for the phenomenon but I'll use the Orwellian version of it since most people prefer Anglo neologisms.  Bellyfeel is not gut-instinct, rather, it sits between gut instinct and rational thought. It is System1 thought.

System 1 "thinking" is not really thinking at all, more like a very high order reflex that seems to be triggered in response to wide range appropriate associated stimuli. The important point here to recognise is that System 1 thinking is emotionally driven and not strictly rational. By manipulating emotions and their associations, System 1 thought can be manipulated. A significant portion of Cathedral resources are devoted to "emotional association management."

One form of emotional association management is euphemism generation. Now, just as images can have emotional associations with them, so can words. The words "Alien", "illegal", 'fat" and "black" conjure up negative emotional associations,  The Cathedral's objective is to coin euphemisms which have the affect of  disassociating the emotional response from information component. Undocumented immigrant has less of an emotional connotation than illegal Alien and thus a System 1 thinker (common man) is more likely to view the cause of undocumented immigrants more favourably.

A far more devilish Cathedral device is word redefinition. To illustrate just how powerful this effect is, consider the word gay.  The traditional definition was "lighthearted and carefree", but it's continual association with homosexuality has redefined its meaning to the extent that one cannot think of "gay event" without homosexual associations being formed. No one from the Left changed the word officially, the word was changed by a deliberate use of it outside its appropriate context.

Perhaps the most insidious and hence difficult to spot variant of this is word conflation, especially amongst concepts which are closely linked. Take "tolerance" and "acceptance" for example. Intuitively (System 1) the two concepts appear the same. It takes some higher order thought to recognise the difference. Tolerance is putting up with stuff that you don't like. Acceptance, is giving cognitive and moral assent to an action.

Words with closely related meanings are prime targets for Cathedral manipulation. The Cathedral does is by this by effectively (not explicitly) redefining the word through strict control of its practical usage. Uncritical thinkers (Conservatives and most Liberals) don't notice the difference in usage. By continually referring to those who uncritically accept its view as "tolerant", whilst brandishing those who oppose them as "intolerant", the System 1 thinker is conditioned into a new meaning of "tolerance". It never occurs to the System 1 thinker that the "tolerance" of Theodore Roosevelt is totally different to the "tolerance" of Barack Obama.  Thus the Left wing agenda of Obama is justified by the Right wing rhetoric of Washington.

It's horrifying to see how a bunch of Newspaper Editors (unelected and unaccountable), influenced by the Left wing arts/media faculties, are able to redefine words and so profoundly influence thought, especially amongst mass-man.   Whoever would have thought that dictionaries were so important?

Orwell's Newspeak is around you.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Neologisms and Concept Development.

 It's interesting how things sort of align.  I've been thinking a lot about Orwell and his observations on cognition and concept development.  As Orwell noticed, Newspeak was an attempt to selectively de-conceptualise a language, thereby preventing the preventing the formation of ideas which were inimical to the regime. The important point here is that conceptual development is severely constrained by language limitation.

Without an appropriate word for a concept it becomes difficult to communicate the concept accurately, and consequently, difficult to analyse it and cognitively manipulate it appropriately.
For example; the word, proton, is specific for a positively charged particle in an atom's nucleus, as opposed to "that positively charged "thingy" located in the middle of an atom." The cumbersomeness of the second phrase makes thinking about protons difficult and prone to error.  It appears that the ability to name things is a precondition to thinking about them properly.

So it was interesting to see to Vox link to this article by an American Professor who spent actual time living amongst Africans. It's interesting to see just how deficient the Africans are in higher order concepts and terminology. It's also interesting to see how this impacts upon the actual practical functioning in society.  It's a very good article and worth a read. It's especially worth dwelling over his thoughts about dictionaries.

Secondly, interesting story was run on local television (American readers may not be able to access it.) about a hospital ship that travels around Africa performing lifesaving surgery. It was very moving story but what was quite interesting were the candid comments made by Africans during the show. Firstly, they were all grateful for the service, however, it became apparent during the show that the European/whites were definitely considered as the "other". In fact, several times they spoke of the European stock more as if they were aliens than fellow human beings. One fellow, upon seeing the hospital ship for the first time quite candidly mentioned that "we Africans could never build anything like that".*  There was a strong sense of fatalism and lack of personal agency amongst the Africans.

Now, I'm more hopeful than most of the Manosphere with regard to Africa and Africans. Personally, I think there is a lot of low hanging fruit there that could easily utilised improve the material quality of African life with minimal effort. IQ is important, but so is morality.  But what's really interesting to see is just how miserable life is, and just how depended men become, where they are stripped, haven't developed or are incapable of higher cognitive thought. Orwell's dumbing down is truly terrifying.

Now, some may argue that the concepts need to be there before they can be named and that Africans lack the ability for concept generation ( I dispute this--with qualifications) but what's important to recognise is that higher order thought appears to be impossible without higher order concept generation and analysis, something that is facilitated by the development of a neologism for the concept.

Which leads me to Conservatism.  As I've said before on this blog, the story of Conservatism in the 20th Century is one of continual defeat. Defeat by an enemy that has out thought and maneuvered it. Part of the reason, I believe, is that conservatism has been brain dead for the past two hundred years or so. Even concepts like doublethink and prolefeed came from an author whose intellectual heritage was from the Left.

That's why I think it's important for conservatives to coin neologisms (where appropriate) in order to both describe observed phenomenon and to be able to develop the concept.

For example, take the current observation that most people tend to congregate amongst others of their own race. The standard left take on this is that it is a manifest example of racism (thereby, through frame-shifting,  justifying their social engineering projects). Is there another more accurate word for the phenomenon?  Well, yes there is, homophily, the empirically observed tendency for people to associate with like. The Right is never going to win a battle (nor it should) based upon a justification for racism, but it may win adherents by arguing a case for a society based upon homophily.  Stable societies are built on an accurate understanding of human nature, not a denial of it.

The point is that the Right shouldn't be afraid of coining new words to describe new concepts. Roissy's contribution has been particularly invaluable. The hamster, hypergamy and carousel get an idea across more efficiently than their non-neologisic equivalents. As far as I'm aware, the concept of an  "alpha-widow" has no equivalent in the academic press. Consequently, there has been greater development of the ideas of intersexual and socio-sexual dynamics in blogspace than there has been amongst the "formal" academic conservatives. I'm not being hyperbolic here but the ideas have developed to the point where these ideas, if taken up, are a serious threat to feminism.  It's the first serious pushback.

*The Japs thought exactly the same thing till this bloke came along.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Orwell and Newspeak.

As I mentioned in my previous post,  I've gained the impression that Orwell developed his Newspeak dictionary in order to explain the cognitive phenomena he observed about him with regard to those committed to the Left.  That's not to say that the same cognitive phenomenon can't be observed amongst the Right, rather, Orwell realised that many mass movement type ideologies are logically contradictory and to sustain themselves their adherents must engage in mental gyrations to maintain their belief in them. Where I feel that Orwell erred in his understanding of Newspeak is in its relation to the human intellect of the average man.

Orwell understood Newspeak as being part of the apparatus of totalitarian control: something forced onto an unwilling and unwitting public. And to a degree it was, but what I don't think Orwell ever grasped was the devilish mechanism by which Newspeak operated.

In 1984, Orwell felt that masses would "wake up" if they had access to Goldstein's revolutionary book. It never occurred to Orwell that the masses wouldn't care as long as their animal pleasures were provided for. The Party, much like Juvenal before them, recognised that public would not care much about higher concepts such as truth or freedom as long as they were provided with bread and circuses; or in the Party's cynical terminology, Prolefeed. The average man, provided with a diet of booze, sports, porn and simple material comforts could be relied upon to never trouble his head with higher concepts such as truth, justice and love. In fact, trying to pry them away from these things in the name of "truth" would likely cause them to support the existing regime. (Note: this means that a capitalist totalitarianism, with its superior ability to provide for material goods, will be harder to dislodge than a socialist one.)

The Party understood the cognitive mechanisms of the average man better than Orwell did. Newspeak was a thought control mechanism aimed primarily at the natural intellectuals of the society, and the way it worked was by forcing intellectuals to think like the common man. Newspeak, was in essence, a mechanism to force thinking people into  "prole-mind".

Take, for example, the concept of Doublethink; the idea of keeping two mutually opposing ideas in one's head without noticing the difference. Orwell saw this mode of thought as an aberration with regard to normal thought but never realised that this state of affairs is the common mode of cognition (Cognitive dissonance) of the average man.

Or take for example the sublime concept of "Bellyfeel". Orwell describes the phenomenon better than I can;
Consider, for example, such a typical sentence from a Times leading article as "Oldthinkers unbellyfeel Ingsoc." The shortest rendering one could make of this in Oldspeak would be: "Those whose ideas were formed before the Revolution cannot have a full emotional understanding of the principles of English Socialism." But this is not an adequate translation. ... Only a person thoroughly grounded in Ingsoc could appreciate the full force of the word bellyfeel, which implied a blind, enthusiastic, and casual acceptance difficult to imagine today.
Orwell was trying to express what cognitive neuroscience is only now beginning to formalise.  In trying to understand the blind enthusiastic support Democrats have for Obama, the statement "Democrats bellyfeel Obama" is a far more accurate understanding of the pseudo-cognitive process involved in their support of the President than, "Democrats give their full and enthusiastic support of the Obama presidency after a careful consideration of his policies". "Gut-instinct", more than reason, is mass-man's mechanism of political orientation. This is why Fascism and Socialism are better understood as appeals to the "gut-brain" rather than logically and empirically justified modes of political thought. Orwell really needs to be recgonised as the father of modern political neuroscience.

Totalitarian regimes cannot solely rely on oppression for their survival, they also need to rely on some measure of co-operation amongst the populace. The way they do this is by exploiting the cognitive miserliness of the average man. The five minutes of "hate", the glorification of Big Brother, the endless propaganda all work by exploiting and conditioning System 1 thought processes. Newspeak was a language which forced those of any intellectual ability to think like the average man thereby rendering them susceptible to the cognitive conditioning techniques.  To think in Newspeak is to think like a prole and avoid System 2 thought.

Orwell, like most other left wing intellectuals, never fully appreciated just outside the mindset of the proletariat he was. Though a committed Socialist who felt that he belonged to the "workers", there is plenty enough evidence that he had a hard time mixing with "the people." He just simply wasn't one of them. His understanding of prole stupidity, based upon his won frame of reference, was that Newspeak was "forced" onto the proles, whereas, in reality, it was their natural mode of thought(System 1). Orwell's fundamental misunderstanding of Newspeak lay in the assumption of what I call the  rationalist fallacy.

The rationalist fallacy assumes that the average man is "rational" when it counts. The problem is that average man is not, cognitive miserliness is the norm. Therefore any system of thought or organisation which relies on the rationality of Joe Average is going to fail in the long run. The problem is that a lot of mainstream conservative thought is based upon this premise which in turn undermines its own survival and helps feed the leftist beast. Any Conservatism which believe in the right of the cognitive miser to choose is a dead man walking. This criticism of the prole-mind is not based upon any snobbery, rather it is of functional basis. Competency, not class, should be the sole criteria for decision eligibility.  The Left needs the stupid to survive.

Monday, December 02, 2013

Cathedral Ops: Vitaly Churkin Edition.

One of the early scholars looking at communist "brainwashing" techniques was American psychiatrist was Robert Lifton. As a result of his studies he published a book, Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism. Here, he set out to identify the various mechanisms that totalitarian regimes used to manipulate people's thinking.

A powerful mechanism that emerged was that of Milieu Control. Briefly, Milleau control involves the control of information that an individual receives. By controlling factual data and use of language, totalitarian regimes can influence the milieu in which thought occurs. Suppressing information that is not conducive to "the cause" is one such way of exerting control. The other is by painting the accepted cause in a positive light and the negative view in its opposite.

Areas in which Milieu Control is particularly powerful is where the media are the only source of information on the subject. Foreign policy is particularly susceptible to this kind of manipulation.

It's clear that various factions in the community are keen on the West intervening in the war in Syria. My own view, based upon discussions with Syrians is that the situation is far more complex than what we have been shown on the television and whilst Assad has his faults, the opposition aren't much better. It's a choice between bad and worse.  Should the West choose to support the anti-Assad forces, they would be in the curious position of fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan and supporting it in Syria! Still there seem to be many "hawks" eager to embroil the West in another war.

Recently CNN invited Vitaly Churkin to discuss the matter. CNN "edited" the interview to such an extent that Churkin had to formally complain about the network's misrepresentation of his position.
Maria Zarkharova a spokesperson from the Ministry of Foreign affairs had this to say about the incident.

"The principal comments made by Russian permanent representative to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, on Syria in his interview on CNN were cut from the screened version of this interview. Actually it is hard to understand why one of the major news channels is not interested in presenting Russia’s position on Syria crisis, especially regarding the upcoming conference Geneva-2. Unfortunately, it is not the first time when Russian diplomats and officials interviews have been censored in western media."

The reasons that the CNN television network "edited" an interview with Russia's Permanent Representative to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, is beyond understanding, Maria Zakharova said in statement on Facebook:
"The fact that CNN cut a fundamental assessment on Syria out of the interview with V. Churkin is beyond unprofessionalism, and generally beyond understanding. This Western media’s practice of throwing away passages or assessments from an interview that are “unnecessary” for their audience became not the exception, but the norm, especially in relation to Russian representatives. But, unfortunately, this is not the pinnacle of cynicism. A couple of phrases were cut out, so what? You can always say that the broadcast time did not allow everything to be shown."

Maria Zakharova pointed out that Russia’s essential views were not allowed on air at the crucial moment of negotiations ahead of the Geneva-2 peace conference:

"Such situations, when a high-ranking Russian representative of a state or business structure is invited to the editorial office of this or that periodical, where ON THE RECORD he talks to journalists for about an hour and answers ALL questions seem inexplicable. As you may have guessed, the next day, to the delight of the press service, nothing is published either in the printed or electronic version of the periodical. The same zero result is repeated one day later, two days later, a week later. To your question “Why?” you receive an astounding answer: “Because he has not said anything interesting”. How about that? Here sits an iron man of Russian politics in a Manhattan office and answers questions for an hour non stop and then it turns out that he's a boring, uninteresting person."

1) Russia's insistence that the people of Syria be allowed to choose their leadership.
2) The fact that aid to the victims of the war was being stopped by the Rebel leadership.
3) Refugess were fleeing the conflict and heading towards areas controlled by the Assad forces. 

CNN were basically editing out any information that could be construed as either pro-Assad or anti-Rebel. They were essentially shaping the information milieu of their audience.

Maria Zakhrova seemed also keen to offer some advice on how to deal with the media. (She's been reading this blog.)
1. Always record the interview on a dictaphone and in the presence of a personal camera operator. If the foreign media should say that they do not allow duplicate shooting because the interview is their intellectual property, answer that, first of all, it's the intellectual property of the interviewee, who has absolute freedom to dispose of it after the agreed interview broadcast date.
2. At the coordination stage, receive written confirmation from the democratic press that the interview will be aired in full, unabridged and any changes should be agreed and another thing, I don't know how CNN will behave, how it will justify and explain it. I don't know, whether M. McFaul, who has a made lot of claims in the RUSSIAN MEDIA, is going to comment on this story with an AMERICAN channel. But I know that Vitaly Ivanovich Churkin is the highest class professional, who speaks perfect English and is a welcome guest with all the world's media. I am speaking competently, as I had the honor to be his press secretary in 2006-2008. So, any and all attempts to say that the interview was edited due to lack of air time or that the edited sections do not seem relevant are groundless.
CNN has refused to comment.

Russia Today however, decided to do a story on the matter. It's worth a look at.

And on another semi related issue, it appears from reports in the media that the Gay marriage issue is unstoppable. Yet it is. Croatia yesterday had a referendum on the subject and despite all the efforts of the local media and the Left wing government, resoundingly defeated the proposal to legitimise gay marriage. The local media, who have been relentlessly pushing the case for gay marriage, seemed to have missed that event. Another example of milleu control.

I'd never thought I'd see the day where I would be getting more truthful news from RT and Al-Jazeera  than from the Western Media. The world is insane.