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Chaos USA

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  • #31
    Originally posted by In_Loos_Ptokai View Post

    Fast forward to the accession to power of the Federal Secretary of Silly Tweets, the Tweeterbator himself, and his reaction on hearing the Danish Prime Minister saying he couldn't buy Greenland? Same crocodile tears, accusing the Danish Prime Minister of being cruel to him for merely telling him the truth - Greenland was not for sale.

    (Though, mind you, it was there in the US reaction to the New Zealand Nuclear Weapon Free policy first declared in 1984. Self-pity is not so easily forgiven in a superpower ... )
    The amount of unrealistic victimization that makes up most of the American right’s grievance politics has become part of their political model period. It’s hard to believe that people with such privilege and power are so terribly victimized by the left that they demonize as weak and ineffectual. It also contributes to their claims
    of blamelessness when anything that goes wrong in the nation.

    And somehow these are the people who admire strength?

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by Doc View Post

      ... It’s hard to believe that people with such privilege and power are so terribly victimized by the left that they demonize as weak and ineffectual. It also contributes to their claims of blamelessness when anything that goes wrong in the nation.

      And somehow these are the people who admire strength?
      Doo dee doo doo, doo dee doo, doot de doo doo, dew dew dhoo.

      What is "...the followers of Ur-Fascism must also be convinced that they can overwhelm the enemies. Thus, by a continuous shifting of rhetorical focus, the enemies are at the same time too strong and too weak."

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by Doc View Post

        The amount of unrealistic victimization that makes up most of the American right’s grievance politics has become part of their political model period. It’s hard to believe that people with such privilege and power are so terribly victimized by the left that they demonize as weak and ineffectual. It also contributes to their claims
        of blamelessness when anything that goes wrong in the nation.

        And somehow these are the people who admire strength?
        It doesn't seem to be their strength, does it? It's always a Great Leader of some sort or other. There was an experiment I read about - I found it both distasteful and enlightening - when I was learning about neuroscience. Someone had put two kittens in a couple of baskets connected by a bar hung from its centre. One kitten had holes in its basket and could move its legs. The other didn't have those holes and thus couldn't move its legs. The kitten that could move its legs and investigate stuff, grew up normally. The other was passive for the rest of its life.

        I look at the right and that is what I see.
        sigpic Myself as Mephistopheles (Karen Koed's painting of me, 9 Nov 2008, U of Canterbury, CHCH, NZ)

        Gold is the power of a man with a man
        And incense the power of man with God
        But myrrh is the bitter taste of death
        And the sour-sweet smell of the upturned sod,

        Nativity,
        by Peter Cape

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        • #34
          Originally posted by Heresiologist View Post

          Doo dee doo doo, doo dee doo, doot de doo doo, dew dew dhoo.

          What is "...the followers of Ur-Fascism must also be convinced that they can overwhelm the enemies. Thus, by a continuous shifting of rhetorical focus, the enemies are at the same time too strong and too weak."
          This is right out of the handbook. I wish I could fake a laugh.

          It’s almost unbelievable to think about the scale the right has chosen for the scapegoated enemy. It’s (appallingly) easy to imagine creating an enemy out of a relatively small group. The enemy is now everyone who isn’t them.

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by In_Loos_Ptokai View Post

            It doesn't seem to be their strength, does it? It's always a Great Leader of some sort or other. There was an experiment I read about - I found it both distasteful and enlightening - when I was learning about neuroscience. Someone had put two kittens in a couple of baskets connected by a bar hung from its centre. One kitten had holes in its basket and could move its legs. The other didn't have those holes and thus couldn't move its legs. The kitten that could move its legs and investigate stuff, grew up normally. The other was passive for the rest of its life.

            I look at the right and that is what I see.
            I don’t think I will stop thinking about this for awhile.

            Learned helplessness is a real thing, and to play psychologist for a moment, that is an ingratiation strategy. The codependency of Trump and his cult is predicted by kittens. Take that, tough guy! 😂

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by Doc View Post
              ...
              It’s almost unbelievable to think about the scale the right has chosen for the scapegoated enemy. It’s (appallingly) easy to imagine creating an enemy out of a relatively small group. The enemy is now everyone who isn’t them.
              I see it from the extreme left as well. Perhaps especially. The modern left in America requires group-think: think as we think, speak as we speak, do as we do, or you are the enemy demeaned by applying whatever labels we find to be evil upon you. The Left, then, has somehow made it morally deficient to have been born anything but a victim. This carries its own dangers and is perhaps more insidious to society than the obvious evils and failings of the right.
              "In omnibus requiem quaesivi, et nusquam inveni nisi in angulo cum libro"
              --Thomas a Kempis

              Comment


              • #37
                None of the leftists I know, from the US or elsewhere, think or behave that way. I've had leftists tell me about other leftists behaving that way, but it's always at least two degrees of separation distant.

                (Wait, I just remembered two small anarchist groups here that had leaders in the habit of demanding their followers accept their thinking and casting out those who didn't. Besides the obvious contradiction, the groups quickly split apart because that's what they mostly do. Plus, it wasn't so much group-think as cult-think. Also, remember they were small, even very small, groups because it's hard to get anarchists to agree among each other. Indeed, though the groups were separated by a decade, from what I heard, they would have been in conflict with each other.)

                Anyway, infighting and argument is a leftist pastime. Hence the joke about the leftist circular firing squad. It's also why the Python bit about the Judean People's Front versus the People's Front of Judea was so apt.

                Another example: pretty much from the start, the Occupy encampment here was absolutely riven by disagreements about what to do, how to do it, and how to discuss it. They held meeting after meeting to argue and argue about how to hold a meeting. I don't think that dispute was ever fully settled. From what I've read and heard that was how it went everywhere.

                It is prima facie ridiculous to assert antifa members think and act the same as the socialists, or that the socialists think and act the same as the social democrats, or even that social democrats think and act the same as democratic socialists, or that any of the preceding think and act the same as the much larger groups of people in nominally left of centre groups and parties, or, to circle back (because remember the firing squad), that even all antifa members think and act the same.

                There's also a big pacifist/not-so-pacifist split among pretty much all the just mentioned groups. Antifa had, maybe still has, a faction called Redneck Revolt which included Trump supporters. And there's a reason there's about a thousand flavours of socialism, and it sure isn't that they all think and act the same, let alone some insidious hive-mind forcing group-think on millions of people.
                Last edited by Heresiologist; 10-23-2020, 03:44 AM.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by Heresiologist View Post
                  None of the leftists I know, from the US or elsewhere, think or behave that way. I've had leftists tell me about other leftists behaving that way, but it's always at least two degrees of separation distant.
                  I envy you this, then. I have pretty much turned away from much of the left because of hate I have seen (and experienced) from a number of hard leftists. In fact, my brother's wife has become such a font of leftist hate that she has alienated herself from the entire family.

                  Mind you, I'm not attacking the left or some of the left's ideas--I am socially very left myself in many ways--but it is the militant left, the mindless zealots regurgitating whatever narrative or line of attack that is popular in that moment that have ruined the left for me.

                  Originally posted by Heresiologist View Post
                  It is prima facie ridiculous to assert antifa members think and act the same as the socialists, or that the socialists think and act the same as the social democrats, or even that social democrats think and act the same as democratic socialists, or that any of the preceding think and act the same as the much larger groups of people in nominally left of centre groups and parties, or, to circle back (because remember the firing squad), that even all antifa members think and act the same.

                  There's also a big pacifist/not-so-pacifist split among pretty much all the just mentioned groups. Antifa had, maybe still has, a faction called Redneck Revolt which included Trump supporters. And there's a reason there's about a thousand flavours of socialism, and it sure isn't that they all think and act the same, let alone some insidious hive-mind forcing group-think on millions of people.
                  Indeed. The non-homogeneity of the left is very important point and one that needs to extend to other political groups as well. I hesitate to provide myself with any single political label largely because of the trouble of having to explain, "no, that's not what that means" regardless which label I try on. Radical Centrist? Libertarian? So on. Libertarian is especially problematic now due to the promulgation of the Randian brand of Anarcho-Capitalism that come to the front of the American Libertarian movement but people fail to understand that libertarian in not synonymous with Randian policies any more than socialist is synonymous with Stalinist.
                  "In omnibus requiem quaesivi, et nusquam inveni nisi in angulo cum libro"
                  --Thomas a Kempis

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by EverKing View Post
                    I envy you this, then. I have pretty much turned away from much of the left because of hate I have seen (and experienced) from a number of hard leftists. In fact, my brother's wife has become such a font of leftist hate that she has alienated herself from the entire family.
                    ...
                    Yeah, that ain't good. But it's not like I haven't heard a lot of stories from the opposite direction.

                    Really though, militant zealots, barfing up received wisdom, are not confined to any particular ideology or blanket grouping of ideologies. Young or new converts seem particularly prone to it. Sometimes its a lot like how ex-smokers behave. It is, I believe, a very human problem. I've occasionally had leftists literally voice the exact same complaints rightists have when I've applied the critical faculties to claims I found shaky.

                    Anyway, in a no doubt futile effort to get back on the Chaos USA rail, but also nicely segue into it, I'll mention that my neighbour is a retired prosecutor and self-described "pretty conservative guy" and we get along just fine. However, "knuckledraggers" is what he calls a large portion of the conservative population up here.

                    Regarding Chaos USA, he's said to me, "I used to prosecute sociopaths like Trump all the time. None of them are smart." And back when the possibility of Trump running for president was first getting floated, he said, "I was told the Mob was involved in any concrete pour in New York worth $2 million or more."
                    Last edited by Heresiologist; 10-23-2020, 02:43 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Heresiologist , I couldn't more vociferously agree with your assessment of zealotry. I wasn't intending to pick on the left as much as point out, as you did here, that the problems are extant in both camps.

                      As for Chaos USA, the fact is that the likely results of the coming election will give ol' DT das boot (and hopefully sink him in the process). I won't go so far as to say it is a foregone collusion...I mean conclusion (there is no collusion, right?) as I said that regarding Ms. Clinton four years ago and we all saw how that turned out but I think the odds are very much in favor of such an outcome. What remains to be seen is the fallout from his ousting.

                      The nihilstic part of me wants the fallout to be catastrophic to give us the not just the chance but need for a dramatic rebuiding of our political systems. I, unfortunately, don't have enough faith in the American masses to take the actions we need under any but the direst circumstances.

                      The more reasonable part of me hopes we can manage a peaceful transition and the loss forces the GOP to restructure (or shatter and be replaced by something more reasonable) into something that can effectively govern hand-in-hand with a likewise more reasonable DNC.
                      "In omnibus requiem quaesivi, et nusquam inveni nisi in angulo cum libro"
                      --Thomas a Kempis

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        I'm pretty much with you on most of those points, EverKing. However, I'll refrain from being so pessimistic about the people of your country as it's just not my place. That said, I'm also not going to disagree with you, just say thanks for your thoughts.
                        Last edited by Heresiologist; 10-23-2020, 07:09 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by EverKing View Post
                          The more reasonable part of me hopes we can manage a peaceful transition and the loss forces the GOP to restructure (or shatter and be replaced by something more reasonable) into something that can effectively govern hand-in-hand with a likewise more reasonable DNC.
                          I'd like to see the fringe elements of the GOP kicked to the curb once and for all. The remainders could then eat some crow and possibly join with the more centrist dems. Leaving the more progressive dems (Bernie, AOC, etc) the room to form their own party. But I'm not going to hold my breath in anticipation.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            I hope the U.S. isn’t broken as a nation. The idea that a Biden win returns things to normal is false hope. The right (and the Republican Party as its political cover) are
                            fantastic as an opposition faction, and they will continue to erode civil discourse and maybe even democracy as the opposition. They are unified behind what they are not more than they are unified what they are, and they have very few “purity tests” that the left seems to have. The echo chamber that defines their ecosystem keeps the outrage going. Yes, this is also part of the authoritarian potential of the right.

                            The left is obviously not as unified. Part of this is because so much of the supposed left in the U.S. is still completely pro-capitalism and pro-capitalist. The Cold War made the dance with socialism too unthinkable in too many circles. (Obviously the right doesn’t have a problem with the redistribution of wealth as long as it goes uphill). This means that much of what would be center right in most places is considered moderately left in the U.S. Add the purity tests and the lack
                            of compromise in a coalition that doesn’t exactly make sense and you have a recipe for a government that will
                            struggle to get out of its own way while facing a unified (and angry) opposition. That’s a version of what happened in Obama’s first two years in office.

                            This is a long way to say that things may only get marginally better in January. Going from pretty broken to systematically damaged may not be so great.

                            Sorry to not add to the ongoing discussion directly, but some of this is relevant. And it is certainly relevant to the thread.

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