Sunday, February 18, 2018

What religion should be

Religion should be s technology of sanity, of mental health. It should be a means of balancing ones own internal emotional environment, managing interpersonal relationships harmoniously, and remembering and respecting the sacred without fetishizing it. We need air to breath, but it is useless trying to remember this continually. In a healthy world, what needs to be done, will be done.

The Alienist

Very few crime dramas survive any more unless they have spectacular crimes.

When I was growing up, the grotesque was rare and generally remarked upon.  An alien emerging from someones stomach was horrifying back then, even if by today's standards the SE were almost laughable.

Very few people rooted for the criminals, or so I suppose. But rooting for the criminal is the essence of most horror franchises any more, and they are very popular.  Hannibal Lector, the cannibal psychistrist (there is some symbology), became a hero.

Is it really asking too much to see connections between all this and, not the rate of violence, but the QUALITY of it, in our modern world?  

Protecting our children

My question is: what happens if the government--or de facto government--comes to control our every last action?  If we allow this, are we "protecting our children"?  Not if we believe, as I do, that freedom is necessary for a fulfilling life.

And where are we drifting?  Is it really an improvement if we are all wandering around by ourselves, lost in some VR contained in high tech glasses, consuming vicious scenes of torture, murder, and wanton cruelty, and completely emotionally separated from one another?  Would this be better, if all guns of any sort had been confiscated, and everyone had to content themselves to shooting or watching being shot, hundreds of people every day? Is this peace?  Is this freedom?

Think.  Look.  See.

Saturday, February 17, 2018


The Left likes to style itself as nuanced, as the side which avoids simplistic differentiations into good and bad, right and wrong.

But if you look more carefully, it is the conservatives who are willing to, as an example, admit honestly where America has fallen short of its ideals, but who are still fully engaged by the ideals embodied in our founding spirit and expressed concretely in our Constitution.  It is the political Left which wants to make of its enemies simplistic caricatures who are inherently evil.  There is no conversation wanted or needed.

Everything in their world is simple.  You want to end poverty?  Give poor people money.  You want to end gun violence?  Ban guns.  You want peace?  Get rid of all your weapons.

None of these political platforms are ever discussed honestly.  They are simply stipulated.  Being the intellectual equivalents of sugar cookies, they are tasty, simple, and easily washed down with a bit of cold milk.

But reality is complex.  It does not take much education or much experience to see this.  Conservatives are the only ones TRYING to solve real problems.  That is my honest view.  No one can claim to be trying to solve problems who is unwilling to engage with and understand alternative viewpoints. 

And as I have pointed out often, it is quite impossible to reach the age of 18 in this or any other industrialized nation without having had the simplistic propaganda of the Left fed to you daily for many years.  We GET what they are saying.  That is not the problem.  And speaking louder is no solution to the problem of intellectual incoherence and dishonesty.

I am a proud conservative.  I am proud to be INTELLECTUALLY superior to those who would want to argue with what I believe.

American culture

I got cable a month or two ago, after largely passing on TV for some 15 years.  It has long been a bit absurd for people to accuse me of being brainwashed by Fox, when I literally had no means of watching it.

I will tender an observation or two.

First, it is difficult to watch TV on nearly any channel for more than ten minutes without seeing someone shot, and/or handcuffed to a chair in some form, and interrogated.  You see it in ads for TV, with this show "The Alienist" making plain appeals to those fascinated by the horrific.  You see violence during the day, on substantially all networks, and with no honest or serious concern for viewers under 18, 15, 10, or even 5.

And of course most parents don't care.  Family friends of ours were letting their kids watch "300" when they were under age 10.

There is a part of our brains which is unable to fully and completely separate fantasy rendered realistically from reality.  It is in fact our emotional involvement with the actors portraying fantastic scenes which makes watching TV, watching movies, an emotional experience, which pulls us out of mundane homes, while sitting on large couches, eating fatty highly processed food, drinking alcohol, and makes us feel--SOMETHING.

And this violence, of course, is interspersed with clever ads telling us that things and experiences will complete our lives, that everyone else is happy, and we alone something else, but that buying and buying and buying, sooner or later, will fulfill us.

Most Americans are being indoctrinated/acculturated by this medium up to 10 hours a day.  Many wake up to TV, eat to TV, and go to sleep to TV.

Now, obviously many commentators have pointed out how ludicrous, stupid, and complacent this feature of our culture makes us.  It makes us afraid, manifestly, as well.  But is it not worth asking how we can change this again? TV is not satisfying.  It can't be.

And one particular recurring theme I would mention that I think is directly relevant to mass shootings, is that of the Man Wounded Seeking Revenge. I can't recall the first movie which used this theme.  Some innocent guy--who just happens to be a total badass--is hurt by some group.  They kill his family.  They betray him.  They hijack his ship.  And from this flows the rationalization of an hour or two of violence, of people being killed in as many creative ways as the writers can concoct.  Pencil through the eyeball?  Fantastic.

This pattern, of reacting to wrong with massive violence, is in fact the logic of the mass shooting.  Some group called on Leftists to shoot Republicans in the wake of the shooting in Florida.  Same logic.

Always your enemies are somehow different in kind from you.  They lose their humanity. 

I can't emphasize enough how much I think the REPEATED, continual reinforcement of this theme must be affecting our collective psyche.

Ponder, just for a moment, how our nation would change IMMEDIATELY, if all TV programming on all channels ended today.  Or even if we only broadcast actual history (rather than "Ancient Alien theorists believe the use of the circle in antiquity must imply alien visitation"), nature channels, and socially and emotionally complex dramas where most of the violence was psychological.

Small wonder, now that I think about it, that we are a nation of morons.

But what do we do about it?  This is the question, is it not?  How do we turn away from making things worse by making an already damaging system exponentially more harmful by making it fully immersive, via VR?

Who is still talking about this?  The Left talked about violence in the 1960's (perhaps), 1970's, and I'm pretty sure 1980's, as I recall.  The Alan Alda's and Sally Struthers condemned it, because politically much of it was unabashedly patriotic, and unabashedly in the service of black and white moral causes.

But all that has stopped.  We have famous actors like Alec Baldwin and directors like Martin Scorsese calling for the movie based on Sade's "120 Days of Sodom" to be made readily available because of its "artistic value".  This is where we live.  More or less pure cruelty and violence counts as art, because violence is somehow seen as profound.  Nothing could be further from the truth. Violence is only profound to the walking dead.

I ask again, though: how can or could we start talking about this again?  How could we put a mirror to ourselves, and try to learn something?  This would have been the job of intellectuals and academics and political activists, but it seems that, across the spectrum, EVERYONE seems to like the status quo?  Why?  Can I ask that question?

The past is never gone

I'm beginning to get the rudiments of honest self regulation starting up in me.  I have always gotten things done more or less by whipping myself into compliance.  It is very unpleasant, and it sets up conflicts within me which over time make me vastly less efficient.  I can't enjoy work under those conditions; I can't open up to it, and let it open up to me.

And I am realizing that, while you can't undo the past, and what is done is done, it is equally true that the past is present to our understanding.  We can inspect it and learn from it.  By understanding the past, we can engineer better futures.

And in the same sense that an apology cannot be sincere if the behavior does not change, likewise regret--as the inner form of an apology, that from which an apology flows--cannot be sincere if no effort is made to learn from past mistakes. 

People, all of us, are pattern forming organisms.  We repeat ourselves.  The power of habit has enormous survival advantages, but only if those habits are adaptive.  Sometimes we enter life with good habits.  Sometimes we have to earn them.  Such of course is my own case.

Friday, February 16, 2018

"Information warfare"

If this is a crime, when committed by entities not legally allowed to operate in the US, why not indict the CIA and the FBI, or at least their Directors?  How is it that Rod Rosenstein, who is clearly GUILTY of it, is the one announcing it?

I will say again, future historians, if the record of this time is not erased, will wonder how so many people were made so fucking stupid.

Here's an idea

How about if we compare the number of mass shooting deaths in the past twenty years, with the number of people killed either directly--by execution or exhaustion in a concentration camp--or indirectly through starvation or preventable disease, by the North Korean government the same people calling for gun control are praising?

How about we recollect the point of the second amendment, and compare the death tolls of rogue individuals with those of rogue governments?


I was told once, by a clever person, with regard to a woman I kept criticizing, "Methinks thou doth protest too much".  He was implying I had a crush on her.  He may have been right.  I never did decide, but there was SOMETHING there.

And yesterday, I was reading a column arguing that a lot of evangelical ministers who can't stop talking about homosexuality must have latent homosexual urges themselves.  This sounds plausible to me.  I remember reading about a hard core KKK member getting caught in public having sex with a black man.

So, obsessively, I first went to the obsession the Left has with Trump.  Here is the thing: to become a Leftist you have to renounce everything you knew, all semblance of home.  You have to kill all your natural impulses to love: to love our flag, to love "your race", to love people like you, to love your community (if it is not politically compliant), and to love any and all traditions which somebody somewhere decides to take from you by taking offense at them.  You have to renounce everything in principle, never knowing concretely what "they" are going to take from you today.  You have to become a simulacrum of an authentic human being.  You have to become Other directed.

What does Trump symbolize?  The opposite of all of that.  He is Inner Directed.  He is an unapologetic patriot.  While not being racist, he feels no need to apologize for the white race, for our history.  Thus, he embodies everything the Left has suppressed and left for dead within itself.  This is why the strong emotion.

Then, trying to be honest, I had to ask about my own obsession with the Left. I am well aware of the continual, almost manic focus on these people.  I bore myself sometimes.  I'm thinking sometimes, "shit, here I go again.  I've probably said this ten times or more."

Here is the thing with me: I would LOVE to be a Leftist.  It would make my life so much easier.  Almost all the women who interest me are Leftists.  I am a non-conformist by nature, and obviously a cultural critic.  I have never seen myself having a 9 to 5 for forty years, then retiring sensibly.  I have always felt wanderlust, and felt some kinship with the people who just can't fit themselves in boxes, who can't bring themselves to fully internalize--dare I say it?--bourgeois values.

In some respects my rational mind and my romantic mind are in conflict.  The rational mind has to win, logically, but that does not stop me from feeling what I feel.  So it puts me in an odd place.

And a big part of this odd place is wondering daily how so many otherwise interesting and intelligent people can be so fucking stupid.  I don't get it.  I write obsessively about it, but at root I still don't get it. 

So I remain a tribe of one.

Transsexual love poems

The notion that you can be whatever sex you want to be is rooted in the notion that all truth is created by language.  All you have to do is declare black white, and voila, "reality" has been altered.  It is a magic spell  As I said some years ago, the "vibe" of Deconstruction is that of men in thick robes waving braziers of thick incense over a mass of people crowded into an old church. It is mysticism without spirit, a mystery bred in fear which never left it.

I was contemplating this morning the change in sexuality since the 1960's.  Is there any more Mick Jagger in contemporary sexuality, when the most advanced tell us that it shouldn't matter who has male parts and who has female parts?  I use Mick specifically because he was, and presumably still is, bisexual. He was willing to fuck anyone, but ONLY IF HE FELT LUST FOR THEM.

We are not being told ugliness is beauty, and beauty ugliness.  We are being told our every last natural impulse is fake, and the political demands of the moment the only truth.

In my mind, nothing further from natural love could be imagined.  It is the logic of the machine, where all parts accept their role in the whole without question, where individual volition and choice don't matter, where "freedom" is merely a lie from yesteryear, and the manic compulsion to treat people--including oneself--as objects the only truth.

On his own account, Mick couldn't get no satisfaction, even thought he tried, and he tried, and he tried.  But he no doubt had some really great sex.  What is there now, when so many people think playing dress-up amounts to a type of sexuality?  Sex in such a world comes to be, or so it seems to me, not a personal act but a political one.  Everything is political.  This is the main feature of the totalitarian mindset.

Fucking is natural. What we see on display today is not.  Everything, in all spheres of our lives, seemingly, is moving us steadily away from life and nature as they are, into manufactured realities on untold danger.  Opportunity, too, perhaps, but what we had was already enough.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

"Gun Control"

Remember that "gun control" is synonymous with government monopolization of the effective means of using force.  Inherently, less guns owned by citizens, the less possibility of resisting potential tyranny.

Now, we are being bred to be risk averse, to be complacent, to do what we are told even when it is idiotic, to "trust authority", and the like, and all of these matter too.  But large numbers of Americans continue to exist who were brought up like I was, and who think like I do.  And many of them are veterans and LEO's.  Many of them are YOUNG veterans at that.

And I will share this video, too, because the propaganda organs of the Deep State will not:

Could she be covering for someone she wants to protect?  Possibly.  And possibly she is telling the truth, and this whole thing was manufactured based on the ready availability of a plausible patsy, and some hired psychopath managed to kill everyone he saw, then get away undetected.

Comprehending threat

I think the election of Donald Trump has made the existence of something most reasonably called "the Deep State" obvious.  The CIA, the NSA, the FBI, and others all colluded to interfere in our election.  They then participated in an "insurance policy" designed to, at worst, provide a major distraction to Trump, and hopefully help in mid-terms, and at best, enable an utterly cynical de facto coup through impeachment and conviction for crimes they knew he did not commit.  Mike Pence, of course, would then still be President, but Pence is not Trump.  And the whole thing would have raised such a stink they could use their howling propaganda organs to engineer a return to plan in 2020.

The final ascendancy of such people--as combined with the Artificial Intelligence they seemingly fetishize, and perhaps will not be able to control-- is the most pressing existential threat our children face.  The liquidation of political freedom in our lifetime is a very real possibility, and it is clear that well placed, well organized, well funded and highly motivated people are trying to bring it about.

Given that, the presence of a well armed populace as a counterweight to the government--the 2nd Amendment CLEARLY being a part of the "checks and balances" system we all learned about in school--continues to be an absolute necessity.  Yes, I get that technology at some point might make all our efforts in vain, but until that point--and it is hard to know where and when it might occur--it is absolutely vital that the citizenry be empowered by law to resist ACTUAL tyranny with force if necessary.

17 dead teenagers is a bad statistic, but consider, as one contextualizing statistic among many, that 2,820 teenagers died last year in car crashes.  The entirety of mass shootings in the worst year ever--which may well be the past year--doesn't come close to the car crashes, heroin overdoses (over 20,000), or even cancer (1,140 for ages 1-14)

And to my mind, the biggest issue here is the death of our cultural bonds, the death of communal feeling, the ease with which troubled minds can detach and attack their peers.

As I think about it, in the old days, it was always possible to find some conflict, some us versus them.  The Dagos hated the Pollacks, and everybody else hated them.  There was always some group your group could hate, could dehumanize, could attack verbally and sometimes physically.  The Jews were a common target.  Still are.

In an age where this instinct can find almost no expression, could we say that these shooters are creating their own tribe of one, that they are trying to create a sense of self through violence, as seems to be wired in us evolutionarily?

Where does the hate go, if we don't process it, don't get to the roots of it?  You can indoctrinate kids not to hate, but what do they do?  Patently, they hate people they mislabel haters.  This is a willfully disingenuous ploy on the part of some, but most are quite sincere in their delusions.  The problem has been masked and displaced, not solved.

It should be possible for every single living human being to have a gun on their hip, and still fear no one.  That would be a civilized nation.  Obviously, most would not feel the need to be armed if they feared no one, but the point remains.

The core issue that needs to be addressed, in my view, is the pervasiveness of emotional poverty.

What we don't need is another marketing bonanza for AR-15 dealers.

All of our suicides

I continue to have very evocative dreams.  It is as if the multitudes within me are slowly waking up, and I am remembering what I couldn't see when it happened.

I was dreaming of a bridge where people went to kill themselves, and some part of me decided to jump off.  Some other part of me was left to wonder, with my ex-wife, what happened, to process the unfathomable.

We say, sometimes, "why did they do it?".  But I think we all know, at some level.  Many of us, at any rate.  There are some sufferings which seem to skip over the more fortunate (perhaps the braver, or more clever) among us, but they land all the more powerfully among those of us left.

Denial is a form of suicide.  Dissociation is a form of suicide.  Chronic anger is a form of suicide.  Chronic depression is a form of suicide.  You are killing a life within you which was possible, but which cannot now be, which you don't or won't allow.

I have been contemplating in recent months the similarities of the Buddhist and Christian messages.  The Buddha might well have said "I am come that you might have life, and have it more abundantly."  Christ  might have said "your life, however wonderful you think it is, is suffering, and I will show you a better way."

Both had a human and a divine nature.  For the Buddha, it was called Buddha nature.

For me, it is almost like traveling backwards in time psychologically.  I am seeing what I had to pay as a cost of psychic survival, what I had to lose, to sacrifice.  One was my marriage, which I never talk about.

But to be clear, all this is to the good.  Good things are happening for me.  I feel better and better every day.  I still have some hellish nights, but they are getting fewer and farther between.  The combination of Kum Nye and Neurofeedback is working well.

I am realizing that I am extraordinarily emotionally perceptive. I  see and feel everything, to a fine degree of detail.  And what I am realizing is that to LIVE requires, particularly of the sensitive, the ability to process and digest experience.  You can only see, can only feel, what your unconscious--your guardian--feels you can handle.  Most people can handle very little, and thus see very little.

One quote I saw somewhere the other day went something like "Most of us are born geniuses, but it is quickly trained out of most of us."

My work continues

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Living in the shadow of Mount Doom

It really is a minor miracle to be able to be awake--in an honest sense, rather than in the sense of responding in the intended way to agitation propaganda--while contemplating the sundry ways in which humankind might meet an awful and final end.

But you know, the Buddha said some 2,600 years ago that the future is uncertain, inherently, and Jim Morrison added back in the 1960's that the end is always near.

Miracles happen every day, though.  Breath itself is a miracle.

And I have decided that my dying words will be derivative, from Slaughterhouse Five: hello/goodbye, hello/goodbye.


The capacity for reverence springs from the same root as the capacity for unselfish, authentic love.  I don't think anyone unable to understand the impulse towards the sacred can possibly aspire to love anyone or anything.

Bon Mot

Socialism is the immortality of atheists.

Corollary: the machine is the God of atheists.

As I continue to insist, the existence of something best called God, and the existence of the soul after bodily death, are properly scientific questions.  And self evidently, evaluating Christian (or any other) scripture is a stupid way to go about it.  Reject all prior concepts.  Test what can be tested.  That has not yet been done within mainstream science, although people like Gary Schwartz and Dean Radin have shown such work will consistently yield positive results.

Why not replicate good work which has the capacity of expanding our visions of what it means to be human?  Hubris and stupidity are the answers, but they are not good answers.


Imagine there are ten souls floating out there in space for every star we can see.  No one knows where they come from, but they seem to be thrown into being by an infinite flame we call God.

Imagine Earth as a giant halfway house, for those who are defective in some way, who have lived somewhere, and moved away from order, into chaos. Imagine Earth as a compassionate offering to souls which would otherwise have no chance at redemption.  Imagine it as a source of light in the darkness, and a welcome respite from eternal wandering.

Theodicy is not so hard then.  I feel keenly all the things mortal flesh is heir to.  We can be raped and killed, tortured, imprisoned, separated from love and our loved ones, made to wander without rest.  And if we live in peaceful times, we are slowly separated anyway from those we love, and eventually our health and life.

Imagine the plan for this planet is to create a place of relative calm and peace, for souls to be born and die, having learned how to be better.  Imagine realities much better than this one, which we simply cannot yet see.

This is the universe as I believe it exists.  It is an odd thing, believe in immortality.  It is absent from our science.  It is posited, mostly, as fantasy in our TV-based indoctrination.  But if you drive through most American cities, you will see churches--edifices and, at least at one time, a body of people--dedicated to the proposition that we are eternal creatures.

As I move through the world, I feel much pain and confinement, but I also see possibilities.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Yeah, there's that


You know, when you reach a certain point of awareness, you realize most people tell little lies all day long.  You realize that some people who are polite to you don't like you, that your bosses lie nearly continually, that most people are greedy and self centered, that most people don't really listen--well, here's Lou Reed's list, in his ode to Lady Jane (Cowboy Junkies version):

And there's even some evil mothers
Well they're gonna tell you that everything is just dirt
Y'know that, women, never really faint
And that villains always blink their eyes, woo!
And that, y'know, children are the only ones who blush!
And that, life is just to die!
And, everyone who ever had a heart
They wouldn't turn around and break it
And anyone who ever played a part
Oh wouldn't turn around and hate it!

Bottom line: cynicism is not an unreasonable viewpoint.  But what I see is that there is a place behind it.  It may be that EVERYONE is a liar.  But this doesn't mean I have to lie to myself. This doesn't mean I can't influence others.  This doesn't mean I can't live my own bold and courageous life.  This doesn't mean I have to be like other people.

And of course there are honest people in this world, although in my own experience, most of them are weak.  If you want to be yourself, you need a high pain tolerance.  But what else is there?  Between this moment, and the next corner of life, nothing is pushing me.  I can choose what I want, and my existential pain is slowly receding.

Philosophy and Technology

You know, in some respects I am quite open to the charge of being a dilettante, an amateur, of pretending to vastly more knowledge than I actually possess.  Clearly, I don't know about economics what a professional does.  I don't know the philosophy that a Ph.D in the subject knows.  I don't have advanced degrees in psychology, or anthropology, or any of a host of other topics I still don't hesitate to render opinions on, some of them firm.

So let me do it again.

It seems to me that, broadly speaking, when one is discussing Western Philosophy, as it has come down to us in the Greek word for the activity, based on the Greek conceptions of the activity, it is oriented around thinking.  To be a philosopher is to think.  Your "philosophy" consists in the thoughts you regularly think, those you emphasize.  Even, say, the Stoics, offer "meditations", but these meditations consist in structured thinking, albeit perhaps with some structured visualization.

Broadly speaking, in the 20th century prominent philosophers pointed out that words are not and cannot be truth.  They then posited that words have been used to CREATE truth, and can thus be used to create any truth anyone wants, which means that all truths are contingent.  This means, practically, that philosophy, as the process of thinking about truth using words, is empty and useless, except as a vehicle for the acquisition and maintenance of political power.  We continue to see the results of this process.  We have men saying they are women, and using this exact argument to claim their "personal" truth is irrefutable. It is as absurd as it is logical, within this paradigm.

I have always been a bit fuzzy on Sartre and Heidegger, since although I have read summaries of their work, listened to a lecture series on Existentialism, and read the comic books about them, I have never actually read their work.  I have not read Sein und Zeit, or L'Etre et le Rien.  They are thick, difficult books, and I already know I disagree with their conclusions.  Why allocate that time?  I haven't read William James to my satisfaction either, and I know I like his ideas.

But this concept of Being is the logical antidote to the "malady" of language.  What you cannot say, you can still be.  This is reasonable enough.  It leads away from philosophy, but towards something other than functional nihilism (although not far enough, from what I can tell).

What is missing in all this, and this is my point, is a "technology of Being".  Most Eastern meditative practices focus on wordlessness, of growing beyond concept.  They are able to do this because they have a METHOD.  They have many methods.  There are hundreds of ways to "meditate".  In the Sanskrit, the phrase usually translated as meditation means literally "To give attention".

And I can't help but feel the inherent, latent elitism in all this, from a Western perspective.  Philosophy was the domain of the leisured gentleman, who at some point became the leisured intellectual.  It was what smart people with time on their hands did to convince one another of their genius, to pass the time, and to enjoy the delights of elaborate intellectual artifice.  Thinking can be a type of artwork.  I myself, skeptical as I am of the orthodox Darwinian ideas regarding speciation through Natural Selection, share an aesthetic appreciation for the simplicity and grandeur of his scheme.  But science, of course--TECHNOLOGY--does not deal in aesthetics as a primary concern.

I see people talking about "mindfulness" as some sort of cure-all.  Then the next minute I read that meditation doesn't help people be much less pissed off at all.

I think it is hard to embrace spiritual technology when you refuse to accept a role for the spirit.  I have more to say, but it hasn't formed into words yet.

Monday, February 12, 2018


Someone posted this quote today on my social media:

“I understand, all right. The hopeless dream of being - not seeming, but being. At every waking moment, alert. The gulf between what you are with others and what you are alone. The vertigo and the constant hunger to be exposed, to be seen through, perhaps even wiped out. Every inflection and every gesture a lie, every smile a grimace. Suicide? No, too vulgar. But you can refuse to move, refuse to talk, so that you don't have to lie. You can shut yourself in. Then you needn't play any parts or make wrong gestures. Or so you thought. But reality is diabolical. Your hiding place isn't watertight. Life trickles in from the outside, and you're forced to react. No one asks if it is true or false, if you're genuine or just a sham. Such things matter only in the theatre, and hardly there either. I understand why you don't speak, why you don't move, why you've created a part for yourself out of apathy. I understand. I admire. You should go on with this part until it is played out, until it loses interest for you. Then you can leave it, just as you've left your other parts one by one.”Ingmar Bergman

Without examining it too closely, without commenting that the whole POINT of Buddhist meditation is Being (rather, without extending my commentary), I simply wanted to say that on my reading of this he is referencing the Existentialist theme of Authenticity.

This thirst, this honest and sincere sense that something is lacking when one is inauthentic, seems to me to have largely disappeared.  I look at all these ghouls hating Trump in unison, who could be, and largely have been, trained to chant in unison "I am an individual.  I think for myself.  I hate inauthentic people.  I value life and justice." And similar folderol.

Who is Donald Trump?  It's really not a hard question because, whatever else he is, he is authentic.  He says what he feels.  There is really no inside and outside.  He clearly doesn't say everything he thinks, but he says a large portion of it.  He is someone who loves attention, money, beautiful women, and winning.  Winning is playing competitive games, putting together great teams, and outworking and outfoxing everyone else.  This is his greatest passion.  None of this is complicated.  You can judge him for his values, but you can't judge him for failing to live his life his way without apology.  He should be an Existentialist hero.

Inherently, when understood sincerely, authenticity is individualistic.  No one can tell you who you are.  You have to figure it out for yourself.

And I have to wonder if his very brazenness, his AUTHENTICITY, is why so many people hate him.  They are too afraid to be who they are, to think independently, to risk censure, to risk being separated from the ghouls on their right and the ghouls on their left.

It's not just his policies which make the Left so afraid and infuriated: it is his PANACHE.  He is a relic of an age when people still sought to stand for something, and to be somebody, and when this was perfectly OK.

I hesitate to say this, but would it not be in some respects accurate to call Trump's style Gallic?  He is a womanizer with a big ego, who loves the good life.

And for those who want to claim Trump has no substance, what recent President has been more consistent in pursuing his campaign promises?

The meaning of life

I am inclined, at this exact moment in time, to say that the most reasonable aim of life is to get from one side to the other with one's dignity approximately intact.  This means you have not sold your soul either to convenience, nor to any of the manias hanging low off of the tree of life, including that of religious zeal.

Meaning is a quality of feeling.  It is not a thing, and it cannot be had.  Felt, it cannot be held.  It is nothing more or less than what guides our decisions on the path of life, which we can never see very far down.  It is always the next turn.  After that, we are clueless.  But habits accrue, and good habits are very useful indeed.

I am very fond of Buddhism and Sufism, but the spirit to which I return again and again is that of the Tao Te Ching.  Renounce sainthood.  And sometimes all the world asks is nothing.  Do something, then, and you are off the path.  Sometimes it asks something.  Then, do something.

My work continues. As does my laughter at my own foolishness and, indeed, that of all of us.

Be well: this is perhaps the shortest version you will see.


As my perception evolves, it is becoming clear to me that the path is never to discard anything, but rather to grow beyond it.  In my view, no person can claim to be spiritual who does not understand nihilists, Satanists, hedonists, cynics, and everyone else who cannot make this world make sense for them within anything approaching a healthy paradigm.  There is so much that all of us cannot see.  Learning is a process of seeing blindness.  We live within layer upon layer of not-seeing.

If I might paraphrase and mildly amend the Tao Te Ching, though, those who know they can't see are not quite as blind.  Or, as some Sufis put it, learning begins with learning how to learn.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

America and the Olympics

I was wondering, again, as I do every four years, why nations like Norway, with a population of about 5 million, can outperform America, with a population of 350 million or so.  Are we that much more decadent and lazy?  This was my question.

But as I ponder more, it occurs to me our cultural sports priorities are completely different.  It is quite likely there are more competitive cross country skiiers in Norway than there are here.  It is a certainty there are more biathletes.  Same with Nordic Combined, ski jumping, and frankly most of the sports in the Olympics.  Have you ever seen a luge track?  I haven't.

This thought makes me feel a bit better about the whole thing.

I would add that more generally Americans value a small number of sports, where we put the overwhelming bulk of our effort, where we spend our money, and which attract our best athletes.  I mean football, baseball, and basketball.  Even track and field, which we don't ignore, is vastly more important and valued in other countries.

Saturday, February 10, 2018


I'm watching the Olympics, and the top Ice Dancers, a pair of Canadians, selected for their music "Sympathy for the Devil", "Hotel California"--which has long been rumored to be about the Satanic Church, and which certainly seems to feature Anton Lavey on the balcony when you open the album, which I used to own--and, if I'm not mistaken, "Black Magic Woman", from the album Abraxas (" The Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jungtranscribed a short Gnostic treatise in 1916, attributed to Basilides in Alexandria called The Seven Sermons to the Dead, which called Abraxas the supreme power of being transcending both God and the Devil and unites all opposites into one Being"), by Santana.  Not hard to see a pattern there.  They wore black of course.

And I look at that, and it might well be their version of an inside joke.  Most Canadians are socialized to be atheists, like most Europeans.  Within such a world view, Satan is as irrelevant as God, with the difference that talking about Satan pisses people off who atheists see as enemies.

I will append to this an article I read about an overtly Satanic ice cream chain out of Canada:

Again, might well be their version of an inside joke.   For everyone who laughs at Christians, why not make of sacrilege a political act indicating solidarity with the forces opposing, as they see it, reaction?

But as I have said over and over, there is something deeper in the appeal evil makes to people who lack a moral compass.  If you make a religion of being nice--if it is never acceptable to demand people respect non-negotiable, firm, unchanging boundaries--then the anger builds up.  It has nowhere to go.  The ego has no way of asserting itself, and thus firm individuation becomes impossible psychologically.  If you cannot be yourself, you have no home.  You belong nowhere, to no one.  And this is immensely frustrating, infuriating even.  This of course is why we see all this irrational and frankly stupid rage being directed at Trump.  But it is a very, very deep current of closely held emotion within people who are outwardly "progressive", as they see it, nice, socially conscious, "good" people, like Justin Trudeau (who shows every sign of being Castro's bastard son: look it up, the resemblance is textbook).  Rage can be redirected in many ways, and one of them is in structured, serious, long term destructiveness masquerading as niceness.  

Friday, February 9, 2018


It seems to me that there are spheres of fear.  There is immediate fear, chronic fear, anxiety, then what might be termed existential fear, the fear of being alive.  These fears have differing qualities, but the outermost--well, so far, from what I can tell, but I am wrong continually--is very subtle.  It is the root of clinging, the root of rejecting.  What I see is that to get beyond it, I have to expand beyond its reaches.  To overcome fear, you have to become very large indeed.

While on this note, it occurred to me this morning to wonder who exactly is asking for safe spaces for our kids.  I actually don't think it is the kids, although they are being taught to demand them.  I think it is the "adults" in these colleges and schools, who themselves never differentiated, never individuated, never completed the psychological task of maturing in our admittedly complex and frightening world.

What more obvious, of people who fear the world, to project their own fear onto largely helpless children we have entrusted them to teach and lead, and to feel that if they can just keep them infantile and helpless, the existential crisis of realizing their massive life failure will never occur. In large measure, these "adults" are, if I am right, demanding safe spaces for themselves since, in their narcissism, they cannot properly differentiate their own needs from those of the kids in their care.

Something to ponder.  As with all complex things, the exact realities differ no doubt considerably from place to place and even time to time and person to person.  This never negates the possible utility, though, of speaking in the abstract.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Where we're at

Where I'm at, I'll let you know at some point.  I'm pretty convinced there is truth at the bottom of the bullshit, but I'm still digging.

Actually, I find that funny.  Maybe that means something?  

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Text I sent my oldest

I had some interactions with my oldest this weekend, and at some point realized she doesn't need me any more.  She has things figured out, or in any event, has figured out how to figure things out.

Now, I don't like sharing personal stuff, but I am increasingly of the opinion that there is a deep order in things, and it is useless worrying about everything.  Things which should not work out often do, and things which are easy and obvious fail at the gate.  None of us really understand all of it.

In fact, and I've never thought of it this way that I can recall (although there is much I can't recall), perhaps the lust for power is at root a need to make the world comprehensible, orderly, fathomable.  The world is orderly, for you, because you control it.  You control your destiny by making it hard for others to control you.  A world where you never have to say you are sorry is an orderly world, is it not?  A world where other people are behaving in seemingly random, chaotic ways can never feel predictable and thus safe.

Be all this as it may, it occurred to me it might be useful to give her explicit permission to grow up, to be herself.  I said: "X, I realized this morning you have become an adult.  I think that I, like a lot of parents, have been slow to realize this, since it is bittersweet.  It marks the end of an era.  I'm proud you are on your way, off to who knows what life adventures, but sad because parenting is a precious experience, and it is largely over now for you.  But I will be excited to watch you in coming years.  I think some really cool stuff is coming.  Have a great day, and please do what you can to get a full nights sleep once in a while!!  I'm asking, not telling!!" 

She cried, of course.  It was my intention.  We have a family policy that periodic tears are necessary for mental health.

I share this because I am not alone.  But I do feel warranted in my belief that I can sometimes put to words things everyone feels, but which confuse them.

And I do think that the scariness of this world, the seeming precariousness of it, the sense that as fantastically built and developed as we are, it could all come tumbling down in a cataclysmic instant, makes many parents scared to let go of their children.  And it makes it scary for the children to go out in the world in the faith that whatever they build will stand, that we will all be here in 20 years.

I don't know what will happen, of course, but I do know I have wasted many years in pointless fear.  As someone put it, Worry does not rob tomorrow of its pain.  It only robs today of its delights and pleasure.

It is appropriate to plan for what you can, but a faith in a deeper order is a more consoling and effective friend.

May this help you in some way.

Monday, February 5, 2018

The crash

This is straight ahead economic warfare being waged by an elite against Trump.  Do you think there is s CHANCE this is unconnected to the FISA memo and the enormous boost in confidence in himself and his policies Trump engineered with his SOTU speech (admittedly with no smalll assistance from the Democrats, but he KNEW that was how they would react.)?

No, I don't think so. There are no market fundamentals driving such an enormous drop. As Sun Tzu wrote, it takes no great power of observation to see lightning or hear thunder.

The potentially HUGE upside to this though is that the Fed may have just put itself on Trumps radar. No serious discussion about any power elite can fail to put front row and foremost the secretive banking canal that has the power to create for itself and its clients literally infinite sums of money, and do so with no accountability or transparency even remotely appropriate for such an enormous power.

Do you think you could buy somebody off for a billion dollars? How about ten billion? How about a hundred billion? All chump change for people who have a magic keyboard where they put in as many ones and zeroes as they like, and nobody other than those involved is ever the wiser.

We have s lot of f great people in our government. But we have some sons of bitches too, and they are the bankers muscle and enforcers. That has to stop.

Sunday, February 4, 2018


It seems to me that goal of a parent should be to foster happy kids who know how to work. Work without happiness is no life, and happiness without work soon becomes unhappiness.

And I would further say that there are three basic ways of framing "the world":

1) the world is rough and if a man's (or woman's) gonna make it, they gotta be tough. (those might make good lyrics to a song).

2) The world is rough for some people, but you will be taken care of.

3) The world needs to change to suit your needs.  Any pain or difficulty anywhere is cause for outrage.

Expectations set moods, and moods set lives.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Living a creative life

The paradigmatic creative act is seeing the world with your own eyes, unconditioned by what the "world" tells you you should see, both as the world exists today, and as it has existed in the past.  This of course applies to all the senses, and to the realm of ideation.  What we call creative work had to begin with seeing (hearing, feeling, thinking) what could be, but was not yet.

To copy others is uncreative.

To ask others to copy you is anti-creative.  It is rooted in a fundamentally destructive impulse.

The demand for perfect conformity is the polar opposite of the creative, living, soulful temperament.


I'm pretty sure I mentioned at some point a little routine I started doing a while back, where I take my fancy little iron Japanese teapot I got from Teavana, put a pinch of black tea in it, fill it with water, and pour it into a teacup to the point of overflowing, while focusing on what I am grateful for.  I got the idea from a Tibetan who did this every day.  Your blessings overflow.

It hit me this morning, while I was thoughtlessly saying something like "God, may you find me a worthy vessel today", that God is not demanding anything of us.  God does not demand worship.  God does not demand devotion.  These are human activities, demanded by humans.  As an infinite Being, God does not need us.

There is a blending of Theism and Humanism which is salubrious, in my opinion.  Getting rid of the Church is likely a good thing, but this does not imply attacking belief in God, the connection of all life, or the survival of death.  Those are two discrete things.

What I think we should reasonably ask of ourselves is that we consciously try to live lives that are as happy and harmonious as possible, and that we make a daily effort to be more grateful--because gratitude is a key element in happiness and well being--and to be more aware of who we are spiritually.  God does not move, but our awareness does.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018


Won't see me posting literal tree hugger articles too often.  But I like this idea of "doing" nothing.  I don't speak Dutch, but it seems reasonable to suppose the niks part of it is related to the Germans "Nichts", in which case a more or less literal translation is nothing-ing.

We all need to do nothing sometimes.  No schedule.  No plan of attack for our relaxation. I will wonder aloud again if it is perhaps their Day of Rest which has, at least in some measure, made the Jews so creative.  That, and 3,000 years of cultural natural selection, in what has been a hostile environment for most of it.

Spiritual technology

None of us have seen an atom.  How do we know they exist?  Because people who study these things tell us they exist, and more importantly, because the belief that they exist has concrete tangible benefits.  We can predict chemical reactions.  We can build new materials.  This idea has clear utility.

Should we not demand the same of spiritual paths?  What spiritual technology does, for example, Christianity offer?  Where does it say "if you do x, y, and z, then a, b and c will happen"?

The thing is that much of the purported benefit of Christian (and Islamic) belief rests in what will happen in the NEXT life.  And for a great many people, as this creed is received, it amounts practically to a system of social control through conditioned terror of unseen but important realities.  People cross lifetimes afraid of sinning, because they fear hell.  In such conditions, true personal learning is impossible.

What I want to help develop is something which reliably builds perceptual coherence, personal moralities based on that perceptual coherence, and social realities that are desirable that are an emergent property of the pervasive presence of the first two.

All the contemplative/meditative practices have what they claim to be technologies of the spirit, but we have reached a time where we need to make them actual technologies, to test them, to apply the methods of science.

I am being a little foggy, but this is something I felt today. I will allow it to continue to develop.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

The poetic spirit

Is a "poetic spirit" what leads to poetry, or the possibility of creation what leads to a poetic spirit?

Is art the point, or the artist? I believe the latter. I believe Kum Nye is a way of becoming an artist of experience. Every time I do it, something new flows through me.

Monday, January 29, 2018

The Eagles

I think they are about the only team in the league that could make most Americans root for the Patriots, if they even watch the game, which I won't be doing.  My football season ended with a tough loss by the Georgia Bulldogs. And a victory by that other team.

The Mad King's Idol

There was once a violent, ignorant and idolatrous king.  One day he swore that if his personal idol accorded him a certain advantage in life, he would capture the first three people who passed by his castle, and force them to dedicate themselves to idol worship.

Sure enough, the king's wish was fulfilled, and he immediately sent soldiers on to the highway to bring in the first three people whom they could find.

These three were, as it happened, a scholar, a Sayed (descendant of Muhammad the Prophet) and a prostitute.

Having them thrown down before his idol, the unbalanced king told them of his vow, and ordered them to all bow down in front of the image.

The scholar said: "This situation undoubtedly comes within the doctrine of 'force majeure'. There are numerous precedents allowing anyone to appear to conform with custom if compelled, without real legal or moral culpability being in any way involved."

So he made a deep obeisance to the idol.

The Sayed, when it was his turn, said: "As a specially protected person, having in my veins the blood of the Holy Prophet, my actions themselves purify anything which is done, and therefore there is no bar to my acting as this man demands."

And he bowed down before the idol.

The prostitute said: "Alas, I have neither intellectual training nor special prerogatives, so I am afraid that, whatever you do to me, I cannot worship this idol, even in appearance."

The mad king's malady was immediately banished by this remark.  As if by magic he saw the deceit of the two worshippers of the image.  He at once had the scholar and the Sayed decapitated, and set the prostitute free.

Idries Shah, Wisdom of the Idiots. 45-46


I was contemplating this morning that Courtney Love/Harrison is one of the only people to have spoken out publicly about Harvey Weinstein before this whole thing exploded. I was contemplating the hypothesis that it cost her movie roles--she made no acting appearances as far as I can tell between 2002 and 2017--but then I read she had MAJOR drug and following behavioral problems, so that could also explain it quite nicely.

But I was also drawing an interesting, to me, analogy, between the failure--the near universal failure, outside of one sidelined "fuck up"--to speak out about abuses that were widely known, and the failure of Christ's followers to admit who they were.  Peter famously denied knowing him three times.

Later, the martyrdom which followed refusing to repudiate their faith created many Christian saints.  Regrettably, Christians are STILL being martyred in the Middle East, in many cases by people Obama actively supported.

But if you BELIEVE something, really believe it, really feel it from your toes to the top of your head, IT SHOWS.  Meryl Streep, Oprah, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck: they don't REALLY believe in the rights of women.   Not when it is inconvenient.  And nobody was going to die if they told the full truth publicly.  They weren't going to die.  It might not have even hurt their careers, which is to say their bank accounts and their vanity.

By their fruits ye shall know them applies equally to people who spout off about egalitarian virtue and human rights as Christians, who at least knowingly accept a standard of accountability.

Why I am a conservative

I'm up early, behaving myself, executing plans, and I got to thinking about how terrifying it must have been for Courtney Harrison to be nude dancing for adult men at age 16.

Here is the thing: I do not feel hate in my heart for people who are different.  I myself am different, and always have been.  What I feel hate for is the people who want to destroy EVERYTHING.

It might be that, say, conservative Christians sometimes make homosexuals feel unwelcome.  This is bad, in some ways.  I continue to believe that exclusive homosexuality--versus bisexuality--is psychologically driven, but whether true or not, some people find this the most congenial, best way to live, and I don't fault them for it.  It is none of my business, so I would back them in opposing any laws restricting their freedom of behavior, at least until it came to adopting children.

But all that convoluted thinking aside--and this was not the point of this post--NIHILISM HURTS EVERYONE EQUALLY.  It makes life a horror for all human beings.  It makes it impossible to figure out where you are, who you are, where you are going, where it is worth going to, how to connect with others, and how to derive any enjoyment from life at all.

If I believed that believing nothing was the prerequisite for accepting homosexuality--I don't, to be clear--then I would reject homosexuality.  This would be better for everyone but homosexuals, and if I were a Christian, it would still be my duty to love them even though--and perhaps particularly because--they were sinners.

I take homosexuality as perhaps a bad example out of many.  The choice is not between nothing and bigotry.  This is the point I am making.  There is always space for creative negotiation, reconciliation of difference, and the finding of common humanity WITHIN the domain of principle and belief.  This is the whole point of the Enlightenment.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Forgotten work

I was noodling around on my other website, and found some stuff I forgot about.  Here is one, that is not linked on the main page:

This one deals with economics.

This deals with  the Vietnam War.

Finally, here is a commentary on Socialism:

I read things I have written in the past, and sometimes I think I have gotten stupider, but what I think has lessened is my obsessiveness, and that is getting smarter, by any reasonable standard.

Positive Christianity and Franco

This is interesting.  I have often seen the claim that Hitler was a Christian, which was absurd, but never seen his own skillful lie embedded in his term "Positive Christianity".

 Non-denominational, the term could be variously interpreted. Positive Christianity allayed fears among Germany's Christian majority as expressed through their hostility towards the established churches of large sections of the Nazi movement.[2] In 1937, Hans Kerrl, the Nazi Minister for Church Affairs, explained that "Positive Christianity" was not "dependent upon the Apostle's Creed", nor was it dependent on "faith in Christ as the son of God", upon which Christianity relied, rather, it was represented by the Nazi Party: "The Fuehrer is the herald of a new revelation", he said.[3] To accord with Nazi antisemitism, Positive Christianity advocates also sought to deny the Semitic origins of Christ and the Bible. In such elements Positive Christianity separated itself from Nicene Christianity and is considered apostate by all of the historical Trinitarian Christian churches, whether CatholicOrthodox or Protestant.
Hitler was supportive of Christianity in public, but he was hostile to it in private. Hitler identified himself as a Christian in an April 12, 1922 speech.[4] Hitler also identified himself as a Christian in Mein Kampf. However, historians, including Ian Kershaw and Laurence Rees, characterize his acceptance of the term "Positive Christianity" and his involvement in religious policy as being driven by opportunism, and by a pragmatic recognition of the political importance of the Christian Churches in Germany.[2]Nevertheless, efforts by the regime to impose a Nazified "positive Christianity" on a state controlled Protestant Reich Church essentially failed, and it resulted in the formation of the dissident Confessing Church which saw great danger to Germany from the "new religion".[5] The Catholic Church also denounced the creed's pagan myth of "blood and soil" in the 1937 papal encyclical Mit brennender Sorge.
I have been reading the history of the Spanish Civil War and that of Franco, and Franco strongly disliked Hitler's de facto rejection of Christianity.

There is a, to me, interesting point here, which is that Franco alone, as far as I know, called himself "right wing".  I read Spanish historians do not call him "fascist".  They call him authoritarian.  He was a monarchist, and cultural traditionalist.  Hitler and Mussolini supported him, as I understand it, in effect because they liked his style, and because he specifically opposed Communism, with Fascism and National Socialism having both been formed in large measure to oppose Communism, while keeping many of its elements.

Thus, there is a cultural and political divide here which is not insignificant.  Franco was not Hitler.  He WAS "right wing", on his own account, but this meant that he believed in an authoritarian government based on God and Country, which he specifically did NOT equate with Fascism, which he considered not quite godless, but close enough to spark dislike on his part.

For Western intellectuals, the Spanish Civil War was a major event.  I am surprised at myself that I have never taken the time until now to learn more about it.  I knew the very rough outline, but have not read any books on it.

I do think, though, that Franco "rescued" Spain from what likely would have become a Soviet aligned abusive dictatorship.  He killed a lot of people in the process, which is awful, but no Communist can say they oppose that in principle.

So often in life, when we become extreme in one thing, we conjure into being the very opposite.  In important respects, then, we fight in the other what we cannot own in ourselves.  The Communists, in my view, created Franco, Hitler, and Mussolini.  And collectively they killed VASTLY more people than Hitler ever dreamed of. It may well be that in the Spanish Civil War Franco was the more prolific murderer, but no one can say what would have happened if the misnamed "Republicans" had won.  The history of other Communist victories does not give one much reason to believe it would have ushered in an era of peace and goodwill, to put it mildly.

The hippies lament

"Ah", I can hear them muttering plaintively "at least when we were destructive we felt creative".

This murmur lies over our political landscape even now.  Burning down the world can feel exciting.  This is why war has been so common in human history, and war is what they  are waging.

The dead end

Something made me look up Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh just now.  I read he was also called Osho, and it is astonishing to me that I still see people quoting "Osho", despite the fact that he went to jail for a likely role in one of the only biological warfare attacks in the United States which put 45 people, I think it was, in the hospital, and sickened thousands.

And again, obviously I am in an unusually contemplative mood.  I had some odd stuff come up this morning I won't talk about, and have had some very odd nights I also won't talk about, other than they include things like being forced to do long ruck marches in the middle of the night, and succeeding.

But it seems to me the hippies pursued a thousand dead end roads, if the goal was reforming American culture.  True, they have created a tenuous mass of lies buttressed by an obsessive moral certitude, extraordinarily aggressive energy, and a very organized system of signals designed to support the GroupThink they have developed over the past 4-5 decades.

But what they were seeking they did not find.  As Paul Johnson asked of the Communists: if you 'need to break a few eggs to make an omelet', where is the omelet?  One can ask of the hippies: if your goal was to create something new and better, where is it?  Craft beer and good coffee don't qualify.  Yoga classes on every corner don't qualify.  Where is the culture in your "counter-culture"?  We had a culture.  You did your best to destroy it, and are continuing that process.  What, now, do you want to replace it with other than a repressive tyranny you will call liberating because lying is simply what you do?

No honest conservative ever need apologize for what they believe.  We can and have made mistakes, but it is quite possible, on our side of the aisle, to discuss errors, and figure out ways to do better.  That is all anyone can ask.  The political Left, on the other hand, has vastly more to answer for, including perhaps most saliently and pressingly its inability to EVER admit fundamental error, or to admit that--like the austistic savants I keep speaking of--it does not understand humanity in the first place at all.


When I read that Courtney Love (Harrison) was diagnosed as having "signs of autism" at age 9, it occurs to me that having a really fucked up childhood will create a lot of the same symptoms.  Emotional dissociation, particularly, is a de facto symptom of autism, but has nothing to do with the disorder per se.  Autism is genetic.  It is in the bones and blood and DNA.  Trauma is not. 

Dissociated people have trouble connecting with others for the simple reason that that part of their brain was short-circuited at some point.  How could any child trust a mother like that?  But if the psychologist was a hippy too, as they likely were at that time in Portland, how could they tell the mother "You need to fucking grow up and create a stable home for this child."?

I see bullshit everywhere.  It is my blessing and my curse.

Why I hate most hippies

To be clear, I am sympathetic to some aspects of the hippie movement. I am strongly aware of changes which need to happen in our society.  I am not counter-cultural so much as pro-evolution.  I can't use the word progress because it has been destroyed by the fucking hippies.  And I get the importance of exploration and experimentation.  What I DON'T get is absolute solipsistic selfishness masquerading as something else.

What prompts this was reading up on Courtney Love.  She was in two Milos Forman movies, and I realized I didn't know much about her, so I looked her up.  This is what Wikipedia has to say about her childhood:

Love was born Courtney Michelle Harrison[a] on July 9, 1964 in San Francisco, California, the daughter of Linda Carroll (née Risi) and Hank Harrison, a publisher and road manager for the Grateful Dead.[3][4] Love's godfather is the founding Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh.[5][6] Her mother, who was adopted as a child, was later revealed to be the biological daughter of novelist Paula Fox.[7][8] Love's great-grandmother was screenwriter Elsie Fox.[9] Love is of CubanEnglishGermanIrish, and Welsh descent.[10]
Love spent her early years in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco until her parents' 1969 divorce, after which her father's custody was withdrawn when her mother alleged that he had fed LSD to her as a toddler,[11][12] which he denied.[13] Love's mother, who was studying to be a psychologist, had her in therapy by the age of two.[3] In 1970, her mother moved the family to the rural community of Marcola, Oregon, where they lived along the Mohawk River,[14] while her mother completed her degree at the University of Oregon.[15] She described her parents' household as being full of "hairy, wangly-ass hippies running around naked [doing] Gestalt therapy. My mom was also adamant about a gender-free household: no dresses, no patent leather shoes, no canopy beds, nothing."[16] Love was adopted by her then-stepfather, Frank Rodriguez.[14] He and her mother had two daughters and a son who died in infancy of a heart defect when Love was ten; they also adopted a boy.[17]Love attended a Montessori school in Eugene, where she struggled academically and had trouble making friends.[18][19] At age nine, a psychologist noted that she exhibited signs of autism.[16][18][20]
Love resided in Northwest Portland, Oregon in the early 1980s, supporting herself illegally as a topless dancer
In 1972, Love's mother divorced Rodriguez, remarried, and moved the family to New Zealand.[21] There, she enrolled Love at Nelson College for Girls, from which Love was eventually expelled.[22][23] Love's mother sent her back to the United States in 1973, where she was raised in Portland, Oregon[24] by her former stepfather and other family friends.[25][26] During this time, her mother gave birth to two of Love's other half-brothers, Tobias and Daniel.[14] At age fourteen, Love was arrested for shoplifting a T-shirt from a Woolworth's,[27] and was sent to Hillcrest Correctional Facility, a juvenile hall in Salem, Oregon.[19][28] She was then placed in foster care until she became legally emancipated at age sixteen.[12] She supported herself by working illegally as a topless dancer[29][30] at Mary's Club in downtown Portland[31] adopting the last name "Love" to conceal her identity; she later adopted "Love" as her surname.[14] She also worked various odd jobs, including picking berries at a farm in Troutdale, Oregon,[32][33] and as a disc jockey at a gay disco.[34] During this time, she enrolled at Portland State University, studying English and philosophy.[35][36] Love has said that she "didn't have a lot of social skills,"[37] and that she learned them while frequenting gay clubs and spending time with drag queens.[38]