Anyone out there still on the fence about whether feelings are more important than truth-telling? Seriously, I can clear this one up for you with one thought-experiment. Simply consider this: We are living in a moment when there is a very real possibility that you can be charged with a hate-crime, for objecting to a war-crime.
That’s an extreme example, and I must apologize for that, because extremity is used far too often nowadays – but I wanted to be clear and get it out of the way quickly, because there is much more to address, of greater importance. Very simply – when we fear truth and debate, we empower harm.
Get up and have a look (top photo)
It’s worse than that, though – because we also silence people who want to discuss the range of truth, rejecting their contributions to the whole with dogmatic insistence, and creating instead furious oppositions. (Newtonian and just as inescapable, really)
This has nothing whatsoever to do with who is correct – it’s about who is acting like a jerk, extending their particular ideas into a worldview, and then using them to justify taking pleasure in being mean to those who disagree.
I’ve mentioned before that it’s a commonplace on the left, that sadistic nuns in parochial school were especially effective at creating legions of ex-Catholics, who resented the witnessed hypocrisy, and discarded the whole teaching with the one bad – but very personally and painfully experienced – example.
What drives me crazy is that there are uncountable bullies on the left who have been doing the exact same thing for decades, on the basis of ideas which may or may not have merit – and cruel conduct which cannot ever be justified.
I’m not making this up, or sniping from theory. I’ve worked in a variety of teaching environments over the years, and seen it with my own eyes, repeatedly – along with many of the more commonly observed vices.
And yes, for the record, I have tried to reach out afterward, to say – “Yes you are entitled to think for yourself – everyone is – and you’re right – their hostility wasn’t fair to you.” (I’m captain acknowledgement – it’s what I do for all humans – because I remain keenly aware of how it feels to be silenced and discarded, and know also that this is a life inflection-point for many young people, where hurt can enter, and bitterness take root).
Now as I mentioned I have several things to say – so I’m moving along again.
Cheap fake fancy, over real solid work
Here’s the big one today – almost everyone is acting like an idiot. I don’t mean we are incapable of any thought whatsoever – I mean that the ideas most express which come under the heading of ‘politics’ really belong to the world of sports.
Purest tribalism. I like MY team – they think just like me! Like I say – idiots!
In the old days, there were quite a few social mechanisms which were designed to make idiots too ashamed to interrupt serious discussions (because some things actually need to be solved). These have now been rejected wholesale as cruelties, (much as saying a stern and heartfelt “no” to a child is widely seen as inhumane, but giving them powerful experimental psychoactives for many years, has somehow become completely normal).
The result of this and many other forms of mass-empowerment of half-wits (social media among them) is this mess we’re in – Babel made manifest – a chaos that accomplishes nothing so well as infuriating everyone involved.
Anytime a sincere person tries to reach from one side to the other, they are likely to experience a wave of contempt from their own tribals. Worse still, the odds are good that the emissary they meet from the opposition, will turn out to be an idiot after all, and give them real cause to suspect the whole effort futile.
Now here’s the reason I’m doing my best to call bullshit on the whole culture-war (aside from the fact that I am sick of listening to spite-filled shameless hypocrites!).
Both sides – left and right – not only know their constituency are emotionalist idiots, they are actively encouraging them to be increasingly idiotic, at every turn.
What is a great idea in the hands of a fair minded genius? – power for good.
What is a great idea in the hands of an IDIOT? Really not the same at all.
Now step back and listen again to the self-important nonsense going around – anyone hear a lot of principled geniuses, wielding all this extreme rhetoric? Any sign of serious sacrifices (even of luxury and convenience), to go with all of the righteous demands? (no laughing in the back row, please)
Now – just to prove that the threads really do come apart, and I am not a tribalist – let me explain why Wynne and her government really was quite done – and it’s surprisingly similar to the reason Hillary was always a stupid idea.
They had both reached their idiot point, and were arrogantly confident about it’s righteousness – patronizingly so (always insult to injury, sexism irrelevant). In Wynne’s case – the labour law she introduced to compel employers to extend the exact same benefits to casual help as full-time employees was an example of socially damaging idiocy. Only an academic could be so dumb.
Let me be clear – I am a part-timer and have been for decades, benefits would be lovely – but I’ve also worked many years as a full-timer, and when you do – rewards that you earn for years of loyal and excellent service COUNT. They mean a great deal of dignity and pride to those who earn them, and if they are given away by fiat, the meaning and all of the earned pride of those workers is destroyed, and management is deprived of effective range of action, to sort the most useful from the least (which is a legitimate and quite necessary management function).
Not to mention casual help (so many people’s first job) becomes too costly for many small firms to offer. Nice.
Contempt for labour, strangely, features in a lot of current leftist thinking – and while this subject is huge (and due it’s own separate consideration) the fact that the NDP hasn’t even noticed that it lost the sympathy of the ACTUAL workers two full generations ago, continues to amaze me – it’s now an almost completely bourgeois-thinking government union (confucian bureacracy) ‘leftist’ party – which seriously makes me puke, I have to tell you. Endlessly contemptuous of the small and medium scale business which create the jobs that people badly need, and contemptuous too of any contradiction of their smug pronouncements about ‘what’s best’ for those unwashed vermin they look down upon, so wildly proud of their own pity.
Do I sound a little bitter? I’m a retail man, which means I get to see how people act when they think they have a special-case license for sociopathy. Believe me, people who self-describe as lefties treating the working-class they interact with, with serious respect? That just doesn’t happen – they glory in their disdain. IDIOTS.
For anyone feeling indignant right now – try this thought experiment – what did the NDP learn from Bob Rae’s term in office? (Clue: it starts with “sweet” and ends with “all”)
Hillary’s idiot point? (no, I didn’t forget making that set of people angry, too) the Albright doctrine. Look it up, I’ll give you a minute. It’s a philosophy that says the US doesn’t get into enough wars yet – they should try to interfere even more often with their military, to ‘fix’ other countries. She is the last powerful proponent of this insane doctrine. Plus, I’m sorry, but the Clinton presidency was a history of unending “Aw-shucks” capitulation to Republican ideas. IDIOTS!
To say that everyone who opposed her was a sexist, is to say all women are in favour of embarking upon a predictable course of mass-murder – (why she lost the kids that Bernie would have won) – seriously?
So – are there still enough non-idiots around to have any sort of a conversation? I must admit to having serious doubts – but I’ve learned something excellent and powerful from my friend Nada over the last few years – when we assume we know the shape of something from old impressions (in that case, my own home town) we can easily be very pessimistic, because we so often filter our awareness for entertaining outrage, (since this satisfies a basic need in us to have someone be wrong, when things feel like a mess).
But when we actually get out there and look at the reality of the situation – stick our necks out and give the world a chance to pleasantly surprise us, we find that alongside the already known frustrations, a whole lot of new and unexpected possibility has also begun to form, while we were busy brooding and seething about our precious treasured resentments in the basement!
So – this is me – out of the basement – reaching out for other non-idiots from all corners. Hi!
Hope you’ll give us a chance to be the non-idiot leftists of legend (and try to forgive us the occasional irate outburst, as we try to forgive those who outburst, also). Getting very tired of unending futility. Digging-in is an understandable panic reaction all ’round – but it can’t possibly be the way out for any of us.
Anyhow – a little bit of realistic hope would be a heck of lot more fun, no?