Saturday, January 21, 2017

Feeling dissociated

I have alluded to this, but I have in recent days realized that you can touch the feeling of dissociation directly.  Now, the idea of dissociation is that you are disconnected from your emotions, but the feeling of being emotionally disconnected is a feeling too.  It is neither a painful nor a scary feeling.  Nor is it a good feeling.  It is a bit like just being there, just being a set of eyes and ears.

A few days ago I was getting my oil changed, and the main guy was actually pretty genuinely friendly, which is rare for those places, which do a lot of the fake peppiness, and I was just sitting there, and I was feeling odd.  He noticed it and asked if I was OK, and I said sure I'm fine.

But what I now realize is that I was being openly dissociated in public.  Normally I hide.  I know how to be social, how to make small talk, how to make jokes.  I can talk with nearly anybody about nearly anything.  I have a lot of practice with this.

Sometimes--some weeks in the past, frequently--I use anger to separate myself.  All the yelling and upselling (which is actually a good idea where maintenance is concerned) gets on my nerves.  It's insulting when I have to put my keys in a can, or be "escorted" to the bathroom as if somehow their capacity to navigate that 20' is superior to mine.  It's lawsuit-avoiding corporate America at its worst.

But that day, I was just sitting there naked: openly a man apart.  I paid my bill, headed off, and worked a hard week, mostly by myself.

What I am realizing though is that emotionality is a way of avoiding a core sense of disconnection, one which I feel runs strongly through American life.  I feel most Americans feel disconnected from the streams of HONEST emotional life, of honest emotional connection, and that most of them don't even know it.

Anger, of course, is a common reaction to an inner sense of disconnection.

I was pondering the Headless Ones, the fascists, the authoritarian mobs, and it occurs to me that the sort of fascism on display on college campuses--most recently at the University of Washington, where Milo was speaking--is really a way of building mass social connection based upon anger and fear, which is to say based upon the limbic system.  If everyone is feeling the same thing as you, at the same time, in response to the same stimulus, then you are PART of something, aren't you?  Nothing good is ever built on anger and fear, but that is not the point of the exercise: the point is to exorcise anomie, alienation, as many have pointed out in commenting on the authoritarian ethos.

Some commentators as well have claimed to see sexual repression behind fascism, with the obvious counter-fascist prescription being more sex.  And of course the Headless Ones are hyper-sexualized.  Sex and sexual orientation is almost all they seem to talk about sometimes.  But for all that, it seems to me the amount of SATISFACTION they get from sex is quite low.  Theirs is a  low trust culture.  They must be constantly ready and willing both to change everything they said they believed, AND to denounce and distance themselves from anyone who proves a heretic and must be burned.

Simply having sex--even weird, deviant sex--is not satisfying at a deep level.  There has to be connection, openness, intimacy, emotional risk, and I feel all these things are quite impossible in conditions of chronic emotional arousal, of chronic anger, and chronic fear, especially the fear of social isolation and banishment.

So I think even a modern Wilhelm Reich could look at the campus Brown Shirts and see and recognize a clear affinity between their mass emotional gestalt, and that of the Nazis.  Plainly, all of them are willing to countenance mass violence against people whose only crime is ideological difference.  These street demonstrations are merely the best they can do.  They would much rather lock people up, banish them, beat them or kill them.

I read that the Seattle Police took pipes, sticks with spikes on them, sharpened sticks and the like from the demonstrators there, who seem to have literally intended murder.  One person was in fact shot.  Last I read it was unclear who shot who why.

It is certain though that the Left has developed and deployed their own Sturmabteilung, for the same reasons the Nazis did.  They are capable of murder.  Thank God they don't have Hillary in the White House giving them cover.  Quite the contrary.

I continue to believe though that Trump can pressure these major universities--all of which get a lot of money from the "Federal Government"  (which is to say money first taken from the people of America, then given back to them in ways the people running the government see fit)--to protect on their own nickel dissident speakers, arrest violent protesters, expel any students caught in acts of violence, and fire or retire anyone preaching anything but a Constitutional Republic in America.

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