Saturday, January 30, 2016

Trump's appeal to unions

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/30/business/donald-trump-unions.html

I have said this before, and will say it again: Trump's politics would have been unexceptional, and Democrat, in the 1960's.  Who started the Vietnam War?  Democrats.  Why?  They wanted to protect America from Communism, and in the war for allies and credibility, some shooting appeared needed. And in point of fact, we won the war, then pissed it away after the phase transition happened in the Democrats from people who loved America and thought differently, to people who did not love America, did not love democracy, did not operate according to consistent standards of common decency, and who lied nearly as often as they talked.

That happened about 1972, which was about 44 years ago.  The Democrats kept some hold-outs through the 1980's, and I think have a few even now in State and City governments, but by and large, they have ingested Soviet era memes about "fairness", "imperialism", and the rejection of patriotism (even though the Soviets were very patriotic).

How else to explain a party which supposedly looks out for the Little Guy, the Working Man, being so eager to welcome and support at taxpayer expense millions of new competitors for jobs which are already scarce, and whose wages have been stagnant for some time.  To the extent of my knowledge, not even the Keynesian lunatics reject the law of supply and demand, which obviously applies to labor too.

How else to explain the refusal to call Islamic terrorism Islamic terrorism?  If you shout out an imprecation to your God before beginning the senseless and gratuitous slaughter of non-combatant civilians, what sound mind can but conclude that your religion played a role?  What person, reading the news, can but conclude that Islamic Fundamentalism--the proper term, since so-called "radical" Islam has merely taken the step of reading their holy book literally, and taking it at its 7th century word--has made major in-roads among Muslims the world over, making all of them--and particularly young men--prospective mass murderers?

Given the actual genocide being conducted against them, why is Obama allowing virtually no Christians or Yazidis from Syria and Iraq to enter this country?

And if rejecting refugees is wrong, what are we to make of the refusal of the Gulf nations to accept any of these "refugees"?  Is that racist?

We live in layer after layer of delusion.  Inanity.  Sophomoric imbecility.  Common sense isn't.  Common decency isn't.

Friday, January 29, 2016

The spirit of this world

I have met the spirit of this world: it is hunger.  Hunger.  The great Satan is that animal spirit which seeks to devour to satiate itself, to survive.

What each of us needs to realize is that we are prey.  We will always be hunted down and killed.  Always.  We can learn how to forget this, but we cannot avoid this.

The sense of being pursued is terrifying.  We are animals, and we feel just what animals do, when a lion, or tiger or bear is chasing them, trying to kill them, trying to rip them to pieces and eat them.

Me, I am in the process of making my peace with this energy.  I have felt terror most nights for the past 2-3 years. I  shake like a leaf, but there is nowhere but numbness to hide, and that is not a good spot.  I have to face this fear.  I have to accept the cup that it offers, and allow it to work within me while not becoming one with it.

It is possible to enter terror, to learn its ways, to feel its texture, and to allow it to dissolve.  And my feeling is that once this terror dissolves, very little will ever frighten me again, other than immediate and physical threats, which is what fear is actually for.  That is its purpose, not torturing your days and nights with a cloud that can only be penetrated with will-power, and only worked in with major effort, courage, and strength.

I have chosen a difficult path.  But it is an honorable one.  

Making a start

I feel very acutely that all these words on this blog, on my website, and elsewhere, represent a sustained effort to begin something I have not yet begun.  But I think I am ready, now, to start.  At least, I can see the starting line.  That is progress.

Intelligence and emotional coherence

I find it remarkable what working a long day, getting drunk, and then getting a really, really good night's sleep does for me.  I put down a fair amount of alcohol last night, and today I get up and out of five games on Lumosity, get Top 5's on 2, and blast through my record on a third.  My score was 50% higher than my previous best, and I've been playing it for many months now. [edit: they may have changed the scoring system; the point, I think, remains.]

It is an interesting thing, watching myself playing these games, how some internal emotional process interferes with me, makes me guess wrong, hides answers from my mind.  That process was simply muted today.  It is likely still in bed.

And I am increasingly persuaded that the first task for most people, the very first, the sine qua non, of goal achievement, is learning to accept the idea of success.  This is quite impossible for most people.  They are quite unable to conceive being unusually good at anything that did not come naturally in childhood.

I suspect not one person in 100 comes even remotely close to utilizing their full talents, what they might have been, could have been, if they had been able to love themselves enough to honestly seek out the fulfillment of their potential.

Most of us have been hypnotized to stop at a certain point, to succeed up to THERE, and then to stop.  To go farther is to invite jealousy, the attention of others, the responsibility that often goes with talent, the encounter with the unknown.  It is to let loose hidden fountains of creative energy that you cannot fully direct or predict.

I was watching an interesting interview with Gabor Mate where he was talking about "the myth of normal".

It is a human tragedy that our society values conformity to an economic system over personal growth.  What do most of our "human development" "experts" talk about?  Making more money.  Becoming better at your job.  This is our mainstream culture.  Most people are focused on more money.  If they are not focused on their career, they are buying lottery tickets, and dreaming of what they would do if they won.

This is stupidity.  As is no doubt obvious, I am an ardent supporter of that combination of free markets and property law that gets called "Capitalism", but as I have said many times, Capitalism, so called (again, I will note this was Marx's term for a system he detested, which he did not describe accurately, and which does exist today in the form supposed by most) is merely an economic system within which moral narratives operate.  You can be Capitalist and live in an old bus, sweep floors for a meager living, and spend your ample free time meditating in nature.  We could all choose to do this.  We could all choose much lower standards of living in exchange for a richer culture, richer connections with others, and richer connections, more fulfilling connections, with ourselves and our true inner natures.

What we need to make this happen is to liberate time.  And that cannot happen until people recognize that wealth is being systematically siphoned away from the producers to the bankers.  This is not a flaw in "Capitalism", and the solution is not an idiotic assault on "corporations".  The problem is precise, and the solution is precise.

I have decided to start giving public talks.  You can choose the topic, but to my mind the most important one is the nature of our monetary system, its defects, and how to correct it.  Many billionaires benefit from this system.  Some of them are no doubt psychopaths.  But perhaps some of them have deluded themselves that they are working to create a more just world, without having any moral tools other than coerced conformity--which they call the justice of equality--to do so.

I wonder if I will be shot if I get to a certain point, but that could only happen if I am relevant, and achieving relevance would be a good life outcome.  This is not my first time here, not your first time here, and we all get as many chances as we need.

If you would like to host a talk, please email bearachtraining@yahoo.com.  Depending on where you are, I may need some travel money, but I don't plan to charge for the talks themselves.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Racism

My comment never appeared on that "Birth of a Nation" post.

I look around me.  It's something I do.  I watch and talk with actual, physical human beings.  Given the nature of my work, it is not uncommon for me to share space on the service elevators--often after-hours--with janitors and security staff, many of whom are black, and many of whom are Hispanic.  If they are friendly, I talk with them.  I suspect in the course of an average week I rub elbows and talk to more working class people than the average Democrat politician does in any non-election year.

And I like to hang out at bars and talk to people.  It's one of my hobbies.  I was in a bar frequented by Ford workers last night.  I was in a bar with scaffolding installers from what we call BFE (Bumfuk, Egypt) around here the night before.  I ask people questions about their work, their pay, and their lives.  Give them a couple beers and just about everyone, in this country at least, wants to tell you their life story.  I find all this very interesting.

And it seems to me that the alleged malady of  "racism" is a construct created by and for a power elite.  It is useful.  Any time you can say you will do something for someone that they can and should be doing for themselves, you win.  Step one, obviously, is convincing them that they CAN'T do for themselves, that they need you, and there is no other way.  Put alternatively, the Democrat power platform depends on the helplessness of minorities.  It depends on lies.

The average person is confused. This is a confusing world.  I'm really fucking smart, and I get confused myself.  How the hell is an average person supposed to sort everything out?  I ask them to, I expect them to, but in the end I can't be surprised when they fail.  So many people benefit from bullshit, from confusion, from twisting partial truths to more or less complete lies.

What do college kids, and college professors who are themselves overgrown kids, get from this obsession with race?  Relevance.  And what I keep calling an Ersatz Morality.

When I say Ersatz, I mean fake, substitute, unreal.  It is not a moral code which admits right actions and wrong actions.  All it admits is people who agree with the day's propaganda, with the daily kos (cause), and people who don't.  Such a morality cannot animate an inner directed person.  It cannot animate an individual conscience.  It must be continually renewed, replenished, altered, and avoided for a time when it leads to open contradiction. Once that gap has been closed, it becomes safe again.  The True Believers accept the necessity for this process.

Oh, I need to go to bed.  I am tweaking my own outrage patterns, my own outlets, my own places I go to hide.

I am not innocent in all this by any means.

What I dream about, put simply, is a world where the truth is valued above group membership, above convenience, as a goal and aim in itself, as something with intrinsic merit.  We do not presently live in that world.  Indeed, much of the "college experience" has as its aim the stigmatizing of the very notion of truth, and the following process of rational, fact seeking exploration.  They want truth to be like a pack of cigarettes: they give you the smoke, and they give you the light.  What else could you want?

Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

My marathon continues.  127 hours of listening, and I can usually only handle about an hour at a time, with focus.  I'm a bit more than half way through, I think.

I do feel, though, in listening to the constant fluctuations in fortune, that this is a history that would be useful in teaching kids in our present society about life.  Sometimes tyrants win.  Sometimes they lose.  Quite often one tyrant is replaced by another.  War hurts and impoverishes everyone.  Sometimes taxes are punitive, sometimes they are low.  Sometimes you can do and say as you please, but most of the time saying the wrong thing will get you killed or imprisoned.  This is most of humanity, for most of history.

Christianity is replete with violence. I was reading about some poor woman, a virgin who taught math, who somehow fell afoul of, if memory serves, the man who became St. Cyril.  They grabbed her in the street, stripped her naked, hacked her to death in a Christian church, scraped the skin off her bones, and threw her bones in a fire, in what amounted to a human sacrifice.

I read about a revolt of the Samaritans, in which 20,000 were killed, and 20,000 sold into slavery.

I read about a Persian king who invaded Jerusalem and Palestine and either killed or allowed to be killed 90,000 Christians.

It is a monstrous and absurd fact of modern American history that our children are led into believing that the fate of the slaves in the South was something other than what was done to other human beings in virtually every country on Earth 150 years ago, and for recorded history all the way back before that. They are led to believe that our wars are somehow different than the wars going back through time.  To the extent they are, it is because they are notable for lack of atrocities, absence of rapine, and for no notable effort at gorging our coffers with the fortunes of others.

Soviet era propaganda, and that is what we are dealing with, only works with historically ignorant, and damnably stupid and complacent people.  But that is most Americans.

I would add this book to those I believe should be read by ALL Americans.  Kids could read 10 pages a week throughout high school, until done.  I don't think even the most feeble minds could escape learning some obvious lessons, and it would force them to encounter and learn to process actually skillful and rich prose.

No country for old men

Finally watched this.  The only thing I will say is that true order is never linear.  Javier Bardem's character consists only in lines, which means he lives in the deepest chaos--true chaos--possible.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Another day, another lost comment

Post here: http://deadline.com/2016/01/birth-of-a-nation-premiere-sundance-stunner-nate-parker-1201690343/#comment-list-wrapper

It has not appeared.  I never know why my comments don't pop up.  There are many possible explanations.  Certainly, it seems unlikely this site has me blocked, but who knows?  In any event, if I'm going to write something, it may as well appear somewhere.

And I will add editorially, that dwelling in the past is bad for both individual and groups.  Yes, it helps to know where you come from, to know who you are, to better marshall your personal resources to move into the future.  But the goal is always moving into the future.  Making movie after movie after movie of how bad being a slave was does not help kids born in ghettos to crack-addicted or alcoholic mothers.  It does not give them hope.  It does not give them a path forward, or a role model for anything but undirected and almost entirely self destructive rage.

It is precisely the failures--the long term, expensive, and obvious failures--of policies designed to remedy inequalities which make movies like this so easy.  Stirring up anger is a child's task.  Calming it down, and directing it soberly in productive ways is the hard work.


Those same atrocities are being inflicted on Christians and Yazidis in Iraq and Syria TODAY, as the direct result of Obama's policy of arming and then not seriously fighting Islamist sadists.  At what point do people start living in the 21st century and acting like their moral compasses still operate?

And in point of fact 650,000 people died fighting a Civil War whose cause was the institution of slavery, almost all of them white.  Are the mutilations of cannon grape shot, bayonets, and bullets any the less atrocious?

I feel less than zero guilt.  I feel movies like this actually HURT the cause of black equality by working to build resentment about things that happened long ago, while ignoring the fact that the policies meant to help blacks have destroyed the nuclear family, eradicated their thirst for education and knowledge, taught them that they are helpless, and encouraged them to seek remedies for their poverty everywhere but hard work and long term plans.

All Frederick Douglas asked for was an equal shot.  All Martin Luther King, Jr. asked for was to be judged on the content of his character.  Movies like this have as their clear subtext the idea that blacks are owed something because of things that happened long before the lives of any living human beings. 

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Being right: a cultural architecture of systematic delusion

If I was still in graduate school, or an academic working in a world where conservatives were allowed to exist unmolested, that might be a fun title for a paper.

I read this, and it jibes with much of what I have been thinking and saying: http://www.newstatesman.com/culture/books/2016/01/why-humans-find-it-hard-do-away-religion

What is truth?  Well, according our modern educational system, it is the output of science.  Since the output of science is variable, then truth, and our understanding of it, must likewise be variable.

But for human cultural purposes, for sociological purposes, it is sufficient that there be a professional and sanctified priesthood.  In principle, once one has accepted the need to concur with and submit to and internalize their pronouncements, this is no different in practice or principle than submitting to the authority of an oracle which regularly offers new information, new truths, new principles, and new views.  You simply take it in stride, even if the information is contradictory.  You assume they are "getting closer", because that is what "they" do.

So in the same sense that for much of Western history individuals were not allowed to have an unmediated relationship with God, so too does much of our intellectual establishment not want us to have an unmediated relationship with the truth.

They do not want us questioning Keynesian economics.

They do not want us questioning Global Warming.

They do not want us asking what good can come from universal surveillance.

This cultural development is in fact extremely well suited for an authoritarianism which has the sense to never be too open about its operations.  It is the antithesis of genuine Humanism, and the opposite of that spirit which seeks to elevate human kind by elevating all individuals.

We are taught to obey, not to think, and this propaganda is made perfect by insisting within the message itself that everyone who imbibes the daily poison is in fact heroic and individualistic, for braving the assaults of the determined fanatics on the Right, who know nothing, will only evil, and must be stopped at all costs.

This is the world we live in.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Hillary's email server

I was thinking how clownish this whole things is, a Cabinet level official using high school technology to conduct top secret--and apparently ABOVE top secret, which I guess is Code Word level access, or something like that--business. I was thinking how spy agencies spend years and huge amounts of effort to get agents in place to secure the sort of information she more or less delivered for free and at no considerable expense of effort and time.

Then it hit me that maybe that was the POINT.  We assume that she had her own server so she could conduct illegal and  unethical business on the side, but what if part of the deal is that she also secured money for providing access to top secret US policy positions and other such data?

I seem to have been unique in suggesting this, but I have proposed that the whole Kenneth Starr thing under Bill was designed to divert attention from the blatant and large security leaks to the Chinese that happened under his Administration.

There was an agent they caught, but Clinton also authorized the open and legal sale of dual use nuclear technology.  I remember a Spec. Op friend of mine telling me he had just been through SERE school, where among other things they get waterboarded and locked in small cages, and feeling very angry that he had to go through all that to learn to protect secrets which did not have a shelf value in most cases of more than a week, whereas with no resistance at all Clinton was simply handing over major secrets to a Communist nation, with whom we had been at war indirectly several times in the 20th century, and which we had every reason to expect would become a major rival.

The Clintons are awful people.  Bill has well developed people skills.  There can be no doubt about this.  But good salespeople do not need to be good human beings.  A good salesperson who is trying to steal the shirt off your back can make you feel guilty for wanting to keep it.  I've witnessed this first hand.  Psychopaths can be particularly compelling.

I don't know who Bill is, but his wife is a lying bitch who thinks rules are for other people, and for his part there seems to be little or nothing that Bill is above.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Obamacare

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2015/11/19/unitedhealth-group-earnings-downgrade-obamacare-affordable-care-act/76040322/

In my own, I think reasonably clear eyed, estimation, I am pretty smart.  I wrote one piece on Obamacare back in 2009, and another I want to say in 2012, during the Presidential election.

I was not wrong.  Virtually all complex systems have codes which unlock them, prisms through which they can be viewed which instantly clarify things into lines and circles and coherent forms which are USEFUL.  That last is important.  String theory works in theory, but it is to physics roughly what postmodern literary criticism is to useful intelligence.

Here, again, is the short version: http://www.goodnessmovement.com/files/Download/Notes--31--healthcare%20in%20ten%20paragraphs.pdf

Here, again, is the longer version: http://www.goodnessmovement.com/files/Download/obamacare.pdf

Benghazi

http://counterjihadreport.com/2016/01/14/hillarys-benghazi-stand-down-order-exposed/

Here is what seems to have happened.  Obama and Hillary Clinton decided to topple the Libyan government, for unclear reasons.  The alleged reason was the support of democracy, but they supported the Islamic Brotherhood in Egypt, and continue to this very moment to support people fighting the Syrian government who are not Syrian, and who nearly universally support the Islamic State, and the goal of a regional Caliphate.  In point of fact, arms and training provided by the Obama and Clinton policies seem to have CREATED the Islamic State, and Obama's claims to the contrary notwithstanding, he seems not to be making ANY serious attempts to stop or even slow the growth of the Islamic State.  He is, among other things, failing to bomb the oil tankers selling oil to Turkey in exchange for operational funds which obviously at some point may be used to buy WMD's.

We know that the State facility in Benghazi was almost comically understaffed as far as security.  The only thing not comic about it is that two people who made the mistake of trusting Hillary Clinton died for it.  Sean Smith's body had to be pulled out by people who disobeyed orders to try and come help them.

We know there was significant CIA activity in Benghazi.  What were they doing?  One story line has them tracking anti-aircraft missiles.  Another has them funneling arms first to the Turks, then to the "Syrian rebels", aka ISIS in its infancy.

We know that support assets were available to the CIA Annex and were denied.

We KNOW that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama LIED knowingly in the immediate aftermath of the deaths of four Americans who made the mistake of trusting them.  This is not in doubt.

One wonders why the Left is so desperate to reject common sense standards of loyalty, common decency, and integrity.

But then again, not really.  You can't not be a piece of shit and be in the middle of this thing, and you can't not be a willing dupe and be in the outer circle.  Dumb and evil: these are the choices.  True liberals are nary to be seen across the whole horizon.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Muslims and adultery

Someone I know is apparently fooling around with a married Muslim man, and this got me to thinking: the Islamic legal status of a willing infidel woman is likely that of concubine.  Muslims are allowed unlimited concubines.

This means that Muslims cannot commit adultery with Western women. And legally, both consensual and forced sex--rape, to be clear--are both completely acceptable and consistent with Islamic law and Islamic tradition.  Thus, when you read about elderly, married, Muslim men participating in gang rapes in England, they are very literally not breaking any precept of their religion. To the extent Islam speaks to the topic, it is likely to ENCOURAGE such behavior.

Their wives--of which they are allowed up to four--cannot of course have any relations with non-Muslim men.  Merely speaking to a man who is not a family member is enough to get women killed in some countries, like Pakistan.

In the West we forget at our peril that a substantial portion of the globe retains the sensibilities and mores of the 7th century,. which was, as has been most of human history, violent, misogynistic, and grotesquely unfair.

Only in the West did the concept of universal human rights come about.  Only here.  We are condemned with the very ideas which would not exist but for our cultural innovations.

You cannot repeat Soviet propaganda--and that is what they push on the Daily Cause and HuffPo--without being historically ignorant, unprincipled, and characterized by that stupidity which thinks it knows everything worth knowing, never guessing the extent of its intellectual depravity.

Ramble one

I am trying to say something, but I am not yet sure what.  What follows is, I recognize, incoherent.  There will likely be another ramble after this one, but not until I take care of some business.


As the State grows, individual power diminishes. As the State does for you, you do less. As the State embodies and expresses power, you embody and express less, you do less, you are less.

Someone claimed that one of the goals of an aspiring global totalitarian was to get everyone implanted with microchips which contain everything about us.  We can walk into a store, pick something up, and walk out, and the cost of that item is deducted from our account.  There is no need for a cashier, since they know who I am.  They know where to find me.  And if I act up, my chip is emptied, and my movements can be controlled.  They know who I talk to, where I go, even what I say.

But of course we have to agree to this.  And all of these ideas demand, for their implementation, fear.  Governments are grown because of fear: fear of war, fear of crime, fear of confusion.  And what drives fear is a sense of helplessness.

Terrorism is a perfect vehicle for authoritarians because it is amorphous.  It has no boundaries. It has no time.  It is not a conventional war, and thus can be declared in perpetuity.  I personally wonder if ISIS has not been built by our shadow government precisely BECAUSE we were winning the war on terror.  Certainly, Obama armed and almost certainly trained what became ISIS, and it seems we are not attacking the oil trucks which deliver wealth to ISIS, and are not effectively targeting their leadership or propaganda centers.  We seem in fact to still be arming people whose only allegiance to us is their claimed opposition to Assad.


Consolations

It seems to be the case that our unconscious will only feed us information it feels we can handle emotionally.  A great many people--likely most, in my view--spend lives with shit crammed into the back of their emotional selves which never comes out, because they never give it time to, they never ask it to, and they are unprepared to deal with it if it does.

For my part, as I am watching darkness come out of me, I also watch it fade.  You cannot fight darkness in yourself: you allow it, and it dissipates.  All emotions have information.  Listen to that information, learn from it, and that emotion is no longer needed.  It is a telegram that has been read.

Last night I was realizing that as a baby I was not wanted.  I imagined this scene of fighting out of the womb--I had a difficult delivery--being placed in my mothers arms, and her face being filled with shock and rejection as she realized I was not the perfect girl her narcissism had led her to believe was the only possibility.  They did not even have a boy's name selected, such was her certainty.

She tried to love me.  I don't doubt this.  But will cannot coerce love, and she herself was never loved.  It is a mystery to her, as indeed it has largely been a mystery to me.

And I ponder how babies deal with primal rejection and neglect, and it seems to me that we are missing part of the puzzle: children are not born fully helpless.  All of us, all humans, come from another world, and reenter that world when we die.  This is my belief.

It is also my belief that we land on this world with a plan, and with a nascent self that has been in development over long periods of time.  We are not blank slates.  We are born with worlds of information latent within us.

Here is one of my favorite reincarnation stories: http://www.iisis.net/index.php?page=past-life-murderer-identified-ax-axe-skull-reincarnation-birthmarks-past-life-scars&hl=en_US

At three this child was speaking of what he knew, but somewhere in him it was there when he was born.

Fear and helplessness, it seems to me, are inextricably linked. And fear and chronic anger are likewise linked.

This thought pattern, which concords (I made it a verb) with my own sense of how "objective" (note the bias inherent in needing to use this word) reality works, is congenial to me, and perhaps may be to you as well.

Countless thousands of unwanted children are born every day. What is their destiny?  They are sundry, but we must never assume from one cause must proceed another effect where consciousness is concerned.  Life is far more complicated, rich, and interesting than that.

Monday, January 18, 2016

The devolution of decency

I watched Captain America--the first one--with my oldest last night, and the obvious theme was "I don't like bullies".  This is the American self image, and one which has animated much of our foreign policy over the past century.  We were of course often accused of being bullies by Soviet propagandists--perhaps, it must said, sometimes accurately, although not in Korea and not in Vietnam--and their propaganda was congenial to the conceits of very soft, historically ignorant western intellectuals.  It continues to be.

In a post which did not last an hour I told the Huffington Post audience that their beliefs could reliably be inferred by simply positing arrogance, complacency, and Soviet propaganda memes.  I view that as only very slightly hyperbole, and with respect to the Soviets, I will mention I have not had a post last an hour on that Goebbelsian--should I say Leninist, Alinskyan, or Obaman?--thought-vehicle in some years.  It doesn't matter what I say.  It seemingly only matters that I say it.  These people censor opposing views then both wonder why everyone does not believe as they do, and why they are so angry at them.

The point I wanted to make relates to this sad story: http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/01/15/15-year-old-boy-was-stabbed-to-death-by-migrant-because-he-was-protecting-young-girl-from-sex-assault/

A Muslim--and the religion is clearly significant, since rape is nowhere condoned by any civilized religion, even if it has sometimes been practiced--attempts to rape a Swedish school girl, and the boy who stops it is stabbed to death in retaliation.  The Swedes suppress the truth, call the victim a "bully" with no evidence, and rush to get the story from the Muslim, who of course makes something up.

The image I keep getting in mind, and I'm sorry this is not more classical, but perhaps the more useful for it, is the Minister of Magic in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, who keeps denying that Voldemort is back.  Despite all evidence he chooses to privilege the more congenial, the easier, the less painful, of two options, even though it has nothing BUT convenience going for it.

And see what happens when you are suppressing something you KNOW on some level is true is that you do not exist on a continuum, but the more WRONG you are, the more you FIGHT for your wrong view.  You get angry at those who insist on telling the truth.  You resent them.  You demonize them.  You push them to the side and marginalize them.

What we see in this Swedish story is that common decency and common sense are simply not welcome.  They are not interested in doing the right thing if it requires new thoughts, the reevaluation of the cultural direction they have chosen, and particularly if it requires JUDGEMENT.  They want to be nice.  They want to be all things to all people, and they do not want to admit evil exists.

I was describing this in my version of the Grand Inquisitor, when I had Sade say he would eliminate all notions of good and evil, as the best guarantee that evil would prevail.

If "all that is necessary for evil to prevail is for good people to do nothing", then the cause of evil has to stigmatize the very idea of good.  And this has transpired.  A boy killed for preventing a rape is the villain, and the aspiring rapist and actual murderer is the hero.

This is where decadence, weakness, spiritual sickness, which I term "Sybaritic Leftism" transitions into that hatred, violence, anger, and pervasive deceit I call "Cultural Sadeism".  As I say over and over and over, they are connected.  The one MUST lead to the other.  It lacks the strength to defend itself, and it lacks an alternative vision that is constructive and coherent.

Too good not to share

"A man who chooses between drinking a glass of milk and a glass of a solution of potassium cyanide does not choose between two beverages; he chooses between life and death. A society that chooses between capitalism and socialism does not choose between two social systems; it chooses between social cooperation and the disintegration of society. Socialism is not an alternative to capitalism; it is an alternative to any system under which men can live as human beings" Ludwig von Mises-- from "Human Action: A Treatise on Economics" (1966 edition)

The salient intellectual question of our time is how contemporary intellectuals--the thought leaders, the primary creators and consumers of propaganda--can be made to realize the nullity of their socialist project, as seen morally, psychologically, spiritually, and economically.

The purpose of economics is not to provide a meaning to life.  The purpose of economics is to provide food and shelter, leisure, and peaceful spaces.  Conflating the two is merely the most obvious intellectual sin of the socialists.

Life is interesting.  Seeking to make everyone the same, because this radicalism makes you different, for the time being, is not. It is quite dull.  It is the play of fools, the strategy of cowards, and the creativity of the utterly insipid.

Seeing evil

It is always growth when you see evil in yourself.  It did not suddenly come into being: it was always there.  It is your awareness which has evolved.
 
And we are moved to anger when we see the evil in others.  This is appropriate.  But at the same time, I feel this anger stems from a fear we have that it lies in us too.

I think it is appropriate at this primitive level of existence to punish evil, because fear remains an important source of social order, but it is never necessary for good people to hate evil.

This is a subtle point.  It is EASY to say that being nice is a solution to everything.  This is delusional.  Evil in others spreads, takes hold, and creates fear, pain, sorrow, and death.  It must sometimes be fought body to body, death to death.  Wars can have a moral purpose.

The goal is to transcend this need, not to ignore it, not to fail to feed the good because of fear of our own evil, which we cloak in an abysmal "niceness".  Fuck niceness: do what is right.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Getting things done

It's an odd paradox, to me, that a fulfilling life seemingly requires us both to take time seriously, and to be able to act as if we had all the time in the world.  If you measure every second, you will be outwardly effective.  Bear Bryant supposedly carried in his wallet these great stories about time. They are about cultivating the pleasures of flow and accomplishment.

But there  are larger, slower energies, too, that take time to manifest, and disperse quickly if you are in a hurry all the time.

I found myself saying to myself today, even though I have things to do (none of which are however truly urgent), that I have all the time in the world.  I can take all the time that I need.

How often do you say that to yourself?  For me, I think the need to hurry all the time is related to primal injuries.


On a related note, I was in Best Buy today, and it hit me that one major reason people fail to individuate, fail to mature emotionally, is not just that our lives are easy, but that the countless distractions we have prevent facing the silence of ourselves.  We turn the TV on in the morning, and listen to it before we go to bed.  You are never alone with yourself, and the things which demand attention, the emotional house-keeping that needs to be done.  You can kick all that down the road for a lifetime, and die barely wiser than when you were born.

It takes courage to face the pain of inner growth.  I can well see why people avoid it.  But each pain only truly hurts once, or for a period of time, and then it is out of you.  It is gone.  It is done.  The alternative is leaving a thorn in you for a lifetime, which interrupts you when you are sleeping, and speaks in your ear when you are awake.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Self compassion

I had a lot of strong emotions hit me today, and it occurred to me that you can only really feel self-compassion when you can feel fully what you have been through.  For people who have been through the ringer, getting to that point is very hard.  Numbness is hard to set aside.

And pain is not the point, but rather feeling how disconnected from your own feelings and those of other people you became at some point.  How disconnected I became.

And THAT process is painful.  It is like thawing a frostbitten limb.  Nobody would argue that the fact that frostbite makes you numb means it is positive, or that there is any easy way back to normalcy, or semi-normalcy, without going through the reacquisition of feeling.

It does seem helpful to titrate, to use Levine's analogy, and to pendulate between the difficult feelings, and remembered or conjured positive ones.  Still, the process is not precise, and some flooding is inevitable.  You just have to deal with it, and accept it.

And I will say with respect to my last post that I don't deny that sometimes I am an asshole.  But what I would argue is that sometimes being confronted bluntly and unapologetically is what people need.  What the outcome is depends largely on how they choose to take it, which means that I can't know in advance if being nice or being a dick is going to be more useful.  It is really out of my hands, and up to them.

As for me, I have my own shit currently to deal with, and have a pretty simple choice: have a pity party, or man up and deal with it.  There is no way out of a pity party, so I'm going with option B, even though I don't like it.  The world doesn't give a flying fuck if I like it.

The world as I see it is so much more complex than the simplistic creed of "being nice".  People need to be pushed sometimes, and "allowed" sometimes (given space and time), and they need to be loved, sometimes all at the same time. There is no perfect one answer that can ever be divorced from the process of perceiving dynamically, and adjusting regularly.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

The benefits of judgement

I had a somewhat enlightening experience today.  I'm gassing up, and I hear a woman say "I've never had this much trouble getting four bucks in my life".  Sure enough, a black man--around here, they are almost always black--comes up to me and says in that tone of voice some of us know well "Sir, can I. . .?"  And I tell him NO.

I've lived in a number of big cities for long periods of time, and I've seen quite a bit.  When I was at Berkeley I used to get hit up by panhandlers several times daily.  I took to ignoring them, and if they persisted, looking them in the eye and saying NO clearly and unambiguously.  It was the same people, in the same places, nearly every day.  I got compassion fatigue within two days.  I was broke myself.

So his woman--wife, girlfriend, who knows?--comes up and says "leave him alone, he is rude".  And I said to her "I'm not the one begging".  She gets indignant: "I'm not begging.  I'm a Christian woman and I have a job.  I'm a manager at Taco Bell.  I have two kids back in the car."  I looked at her and said "you are begging".

She starts walking away, and says something about my "white ass".  I tell her "I've never asked anyone for money in my life", which is true.  I've been so  broke I donated blood for money twice a week for a period of time, and that is fucking broke.  You get needle marks on your arms, and have to wear long sleeve shirts, and even though it seems virtually never to happen, they tell you that on rare occasions the procedure will kill you, so you get to sit there thinking about that.

She looks at me and tells me to watch my mouth or she's going to  bust it open.  I tell her "classy", finish gassing up, and leave.  I'm not small, weak, or stupid, so threats like that don't bother me.

But I understand the anger.  She is in a position where she is begging.  This means she has taken on the role of Victim, and once you take on that role everyone becomes either a Protector or a Villain.  I of course was a villain, and we are taught to be angry with villains.

And I thought about this some more.  To be response-able means that you have the ability to react to  circumstances, to choose your reaction, and in fact to proactively create the circumstances you want.

To be a victim is necessarily to feel self pity, since you are helpless. If no one helps you, then you don't get helped.

And I thought about the old way of being, where people would rather die than take assistance, would rather do anything than be reduced to the indignity of begging.

It is my understanding that in the beginning of the Orwellian "Great Society" the government hired people to canvass poor neighborhoods and convince people to take public assistance, because the resistance was so strong.

And in our modern age, it is easy to say "Just take the money", but what is missed in this is that in the process we all become prostitutes.  Anyone who places himself in a condition of dependence on another, where he cannot raise him or herself, where individual initiative is forbidden, unnecessary, or discouraged, is sacrificing their dignity, their self respect.

All the inner qualities are invisible to socialists.  All the things that make life bearable are invisible.  They only see things, and it is inevitable in the process that people would become things too, which is a fairly short description of the condition of slavery.  We assume slaves are USED for something, like building fences.  What are the slaves on this plantation used for?  Electing Democrats, obviously.

And I kept at this, and it seems to me the reason unhappiness is so common in our affluent and largely peaceful society is that in the old days the societal practice of judging people who did not take care of themselves, of judging those who failed in their duties, provided, paradoxically, a sort of comfort.  Everyone was subjected to the same standard, which meant that no matter how severe your penury, there were people around you sharing it with the same dignity, the same necessary acceptance.

Society was organized so as to reject self pity.  It was organized around the idea that life is tough, and we all need to be tough too.

This seems harsh, but if everyone accepts it, they avoid the burden of self pity.  Do you not think poor kids in the ghettos of New York had more self respect in 1900 than they do today?

Virtually the entire program of the socialists--and I am conflating them here with the Democrats--is oriented around stoking resentment, stoking self pity, stoking self righteous anger, and using those energies to get and keep power.

This woman was a racist.  There was no need to invoke race.  But she doubt sees that white people in general are more successful, and has been taught to believe her decisions, how she chooses to live her life, plays little role in her outcome.  She is helpless.

And ponder the recklessness which would land her in a supermarket parking lot with two kids, begging.

Do I think she donates blood?  No.  Do I think she works two jobs?  No.  I at one point was working three jobs.  I have been unemployed one month in my entire adult life, and that was because I got laid off immediately before Christmas, and nobody is hiring between Dec. 23 and Jan. 2.  I had a new job by Jan. 15th.

Most of the time, what appears to be the case is in fact the case.  What I was seeing is that she assumes white people have money and they should be sharing it with her, since she is only asking for $4.  She likely spent her money on cigarettes or lottery tickets, and begging to fill her tank with gas was part of a plan she has executed many times.

Being too compassionate is a kind of cruelty, because it enables people to live lives filled with resentment, unfilled potential, and self loathing they mask with chronic outward-directed anger.  None of us need to feed this.

And I think far too many people think that exercising their right to demand boundaries, to demand  respect, is cold and wrong.

The truth is you help no one by not being yourself, and you can't be yourself if you think you have no rights, cannot make demands on others, cannot judge others, and have to be nice in all times and places.  Bullshit.

It may be that this woman is still mad at me.  It may also be that hearing the word "begging" caused a bit of introspection.  That was certainly my intention.

Justice

Watch this video and feel what you are feeling as you watch it.  Be honest.  Most men seem to feel a sense of righteous pleasure, that the bad guys got what was coming to them.

I am going to reserve comment for the moment.  This was a very long day.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Future

I woke up this morning feeling clearly that the path forward for humanity, the great Next Step, is a generalized focus on and cultivation of emotional growth, which at some point becomes what we call spiritual growth.

It is so ODD, so stupid, so short-sighted, so ignorant, to feel either that increasing knowledge--an understanding of Relativity, the capitals of the world, the mechanics of nuclear fusion--is somehow equivalent to growth, which is the de facto belief of the Singularitians, who have somehow convinced themselves that an internalized Google would be other than a quantitative leap, if it were even possible, which I do not believe; or that a society can be improved in any way other than through the emotional and spiritual growth of all its members.

Why do, among others, Eric Schmidt and Mark Zuckerberg focus on externals, on the superficial? Why are they atheists?  They are both smart enough to be smarter.  The physics of metaphysics--the Zero Point Field and the retention of information--seems reasonably clear.  The evidence in total is overwhelming for our energetic connection and survival of death, and evidence continues to flow in daily, all over the world, as it always has.

Why the unrepentant anger from people like Barbara Ehrenreich?  I read this article and was reminded once again how emotionally and spiritually superficial the animating outrage of these people is.

Does she not know it is possible to live a very happy life in conditions of objective poverty and physical difficulty?  She is the one stoking resentment, and denigrating dignity.  She is one who fails to see that the non-material aspects of life are what make it heavenly or hellish.  She is the emotionally callow one who fails to see that no one who does not have a good relationship with themselves--as she seems not to--can possible be loving to others.  For her, yelling about pay constitutes love.  But of course it is merely her vanity, her self importance, speaking.  And it seemingly has a lot to say, which says something about her.

The path forward is the path inward,for all of us.  It is the tragedy of our time that our idiotic and grossly unjust financial system has denied us the time and leisure to  live genuinely contemplative lives, and that the systemic indolence and torpor of our universities has failed to embrace and integrate the vast quantity of non-conforming data indicating we are in fact spiritual beings and that while no religion can claim to have fully described God, that that concept is useful, and empirical.

Monday, January 4, 2016

God the Father

I was thinking about the notion that if God is dead--if God does not exist, and is not going to punish us--then all is permitted.

Only on a very primitive level of development does one only behave because of fear.  Morality, decency, goodness: all are their own rewards, rewards which multiply when expanded across a social order, and which deepen as they are understood.

God is not a parent.  God is the soil within which we are rooted, and in which we are free to flourish or fail.

The metaphor of God as parent, however, has proven very congenial to authoritarians.

Greater precision

When you realize the myth within which you have lived is wrong, there is no path forward but through darkness and confusion.  People see this and infer wrongly that there is no path forward.  They call this disillusionment, but it is merely the substitution of one illusion for another.

We are left to wish for better darkness and better confusion.  Life is not easy or simple, but it is one grand game.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Star Wars

Like everyone else, I went to see the new Star Wars.  I try not to be too much of an outsider.

On the way to the theater I couldn't help but remember how disappointing Hayden Christenson's (name is close if not exact) transformation into Darth Vader was in the first three (second three, because as a meme has it "in charge Yoda was".)  As several reviewers I read noted, he didn't get evil so much as pouty, peevish, and bratty.

Being me, what occurred to me is that it would have been much more intellectually satisfying if he had been corrupted by ideology more directly.  It is difficult to get people to do things they consider evil, but easy to get good people to do or at least countenance evil they have been trained to view as good.

That would be a script I would find it interesting to write.  How do you seduce a good person into views which conform with evil, all while calling them good?  They did if memory serves invoke "safety", but I seem to recall the Dark Side was always the Dark Side.

To do the thing properly, you have to call it the Bright Light, the connection with God, the right way, the path of righteousness.

This is certainly what Muslims do, and certainly what most other religions have done throughout history, including notably Judaism and Christianity.

Seriously: by what process of imbecility do you get militancy and war particularly out of Christianity and Buddhism?

The id is not sex.  I don't see this.  It is not violence per se.  It is unprocessed developmental trauma, to the extent it exists.

Annakin Skywalker would have had major developmental issues to work with, and buttons to be pushed, but the whole thing--and yes I admit I am a crotchety old (working on it) man who is reading too much into an escapist epic--was done poorly on a psychological level.

And the new bad guy just seems like an emotionally undeveloped brat.

I'll have something to say about the psychopath Deadpool after a while.  He is exactly what people need and want right now.  I can say that with some confidence.  Whether or not that is healthy is another issue.

We are sick, are we not?  And do sick people not do what sick people do?

Yes, yes they do.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Emotional dying

A friend of mine just had to put down her dog.  It had a brain tumor, and in the end was utterly unable to rest or sleep in any position.  Everything hurt.

I remember reading about the deaths of people dying from cancer, who likewise cannot get a moments calm repose.  Up, down, sideways, on their stomach: nothing is comfortable.  There is no escape but death and the relative death of heavy sedation and pain-killers.

I find this in me.  The pain within me seeks constant motion.  I can escape it through my intellect, through distraction, through motion, and of course through intoxication.  Wherever I am, whatever I am doing, I should be doing something else, somewhere else.  Nowhere is home, and of course this was my primal experience.

What I am finding is that healing takes place by choosing to remain still, but simultaneously allowing this surge of restless energy to manifest, and to be present to it.  To speak to it, to understand it, to sympathize with it, to recognize its purpose--to protect me--and to give it permission to do so.

The process of trauma healing is one of allowing antique processes of affect and behavior to complete.  They were started oh so long ago, but had nowhere to go, nowhere to disperse, no way to release their energies.  And so they remain, ghosts from the past, constantly seeking release from an endless circle with no exit.

You can tap into this, poke a hole in it, and watch the sudden release of energies.

I continue my Kum Nye, but am finding regularly that my EmWave2 will also facilitate this work.  I can keep my heart calm and coherent, all while feeling manic energies flowing through me into the atmosphere.  It is an odd juxtaposition, but not really I suppose, all things considered.  We all "exist" on many layers, in many places, the connections between which are both robust and often obscure.

I watch and I learn. This is what I do. I often feel sadness, and often feel rage.  Often I feel I don't feel anything at all, which I pour words on to;  but I increasingly recognize another possibility.

This is useful work, and I share it because sharing is therapeutic for me, but also because I recognize this world is filled with bullshit, and would likely benefit from a few people willing to struggle in public who do not want your money or recognition.

Friday, January 1, 2016

The biggest challenge in personal growth

I am slowly eliminating my anger, and the anxiety that masks it.  What I am finding is that inhabiting my day, getting things done, I feel naked without my anxiety and latent rage.  I have always had it.  How does anyone get anything done without first tensing up then powering through it?

It seems to me that after a certain age--I would think for sure by age 30--you have developed a way of being in the world which has flaws--you have a limp you cannot see--but which on balance is functional.  And the longer you use it, the more comfortable it becomes.

In beginning any sport a good coach will make sure you learn good habits, and do not pick up any bad habits. As one famous example, John Wooden always ensured that his players knew how to put on socks properly to avoid getting blisters.

Life is like this too, but our parents themselves all too often don't know what the good habits are, and which the bad.  They, too, were thrown out there and made whatever accommodations they had to to survive.  To the extent they teach at all, they teach what they know.  Most maps are flawed.

And so growing means losing old friends.  It means saying good bye not just to what held us back, but what held us up.  This is a formidable obstacle, and needs to be recognized as such.