Thursday, 19 October 2017

The Big Shut Up is coming



Superheroines are fiction for a reason


"Dude, are you doing the Weinstein thing now? That was so October 8th...?" Yes, I realise I missed the meme train, but it's better to be correct than be part of the debate, especially when there is no debate.

Go get the rum, we're going to need it.

No, all of the rum.


I

Newspapers are running wall to wall op-eds about Harvey Weinstein's grabby-hands, 90% of which are written by females. Yup, I checked. All of the articles.

One angry keyboard basher is New Zealand journalist Nadine Higgins. She's a nice person, I suppose. We both worked a trade conference once, she was the emcee and I was covering it. All I remember is her red lace dress and tight camisole. I shouldn't have to mention that, but when she wrote about the Weinstein scandal her clothing choice became very relevant:
"His sloppy drunken descriptions of what he wanted to do to me, up against the bar where we'd been drinking with our workmates, mortified me. I told him as much, and his indignant response is seared in my memory. 
"Oh, come on, you wouldn't come to work dressed like that if you didn't want it."  
Um, what? 
I offered my senior colleague a random selection of expletives in response. They sounded brave, but I felt like I'd had the wind knocked out of me. Was that how everyone saw me?"
I call bullshit, Nadine. You're lying. First, "senior colleague" is just code for "white older male." just say what you mean. Second, every attractive girl knows how she looks to men. Do you realise how much power men need to give up in order that you can refuse to engage with a man's perception of sexual relations in a bar? That guy had a point: how can you dress like that and not expect the attention? Are you just going to play dumb? I bet you have hopes and dreams about being seen as something other than a sexual object, don't you? Aren't you suspicious that the reason no man has corrected you on this is that they want to have sex with you?

Let's start from first principles: what does she wish to be true?

You notice her outfit, I notice they cropped away her wedding ring.
That's why you're normal and I write on this stupid blog
"Hey baby, nice dress" is one thing and groping another thing entirely, but sexiness isn't a homing missile, a woman can't select the targets. I don't know what Higgins (pictured) was wearing that night at the bar, and the dress was probably worn for not-him, but she knew there was going to be collateral damage.

Higgins is just a normal hot girl. She doesn't want to be seen as a sexual object but has no clue of the irony of her thinking. She wants people to have a certain thought, yet also demands they don't have a certain thought. She's trying to control other people's minds just as much as she claims men label her. As much as she wishes she could make everyone else accept the identity she's invented for herself of being a smart, capable journalist, the ugly existential truth is everyone has their own mind and they have decided she is a sex object. They may be wrong or correct, and she can certainly try and change this perception, but she cannot tell other people not to have it.

I'll accept she won't want to hear that I sat at her table because I wanted to see the shape of her neckline. I'll even accept I may be wrong to have thought like this. But I will not accept that my experience as a human and the information she was broadcasting led me to make conclusions about her that I am not allowed to have. No one has that kind of power, not even women.

She might retort that even if her sexual messaging was misplaced and I at least shouldn't conclude anything until I knew her better. But that's my point, if she knew who she was she wouldn't be playing multiple characters: eye candy and serious journalist. It may be wrong to expect a reporter to be sexy on stage, but if you say you have to be sexy as part of the job, you can't double back and say you weren't being sexy.

Hot girls are never told they are responsible not just for the words they say, but for what other people hear  not for the sexiness broadcast, but the sexiness received. Because if I were to ask if she'd like some magic to remove her hotness right now, she'll tell me to piss off. The things she wants are mutually exclusive, they cannot coexist. This is the root of her anxiety.

II

Why should I enjoy living in a world where being a man is a horrible thing, and no matter what a woman does, it's a wonderful thing?

Something bad happened to Gweneth Paltrow years ago, sure, but her aside, the real question is not how many women have ratted on Weinstein, but how many women haven't. Obviously, if some blonde from Nebraska agrees to follow him to his hotel room to "get a videotape" and Paltrow doesn't want to do this, that blonde will get all the good acting roles. Don't get angry about that. Paltrow is conveniently forgetting the Pretend Contract she already signed: we all make-believe her looks aren't part of the reason she gets acting jobs, and she pretends no one is looking at her that way.

The key is not to break that contract. Paltrow knows deep down the movie industry made big head goofy girls the standard of pretty. If she were a fat girl, she wouldn’t exist. She forgot that when a woman is chosen for certain reasons, she is also the kind of woman who wants to be picked for those reasons. That's the contract. You can't market yourself on looks and then pretend it wasn't the looks that go you here. You might wish people saw you as more, but you can't control what they see. No, yelling won't make this any less true.

Let me offer a contrary position, unpalatable but worth considering, and entirely invisible to Paltrow and Higgins: Harvey Weinstein needed to own and operate a multi-million dollar company, work for decades at a skill, earn a fortune and outmanoeuvre every other male competitor just to have the chance to have sex with a woman like Gweneth Paltrow. Do you see? He needed to lift his stature from a default level of zero just to get to the level a woman is already at by existing. And women complain that men control the sex?

In this world, a woman's sexual value is unbelievably overpriced, but it still doesn't give them any power. Put it this way: men have no ceiling on how valuable they can become in the eyes of a woman. But a woman can never be better than her vagina. What's enraging for men like Weinstein isn't that women are sluts, but that they are not sluts  that they are able to manipulate men and get what they want, without paying for it.

Weinstein shouldn't have done what he did, but his actions were only bad if you accept that a woman's sexual value is higher than zero by default. The answer isn't "teach men not to rape." The answer is to remove value from sex. All Nadine Higgins had to do was lower her vagina's sexual value to zero and her anxiety would disappear like the Madison Avenue-fuelled illusion it really is. That would be equality.

III

Higgins pretends to want to be free of male pressure, yet the pressure to look a certain way is actually much worse from women. A "patriarchal" controlling force, unacceptable if coming directly from men, is maintained by giving the whip to other women. Imagine if a boss man who isn't Weinstein said to her: "hmm, you should put on some makeup, doll yourself up a little bit." He wouldn't survive the time it took to pivot on his brown suede Hush Puppies. And yet women say this to other women all the time. Why is that less damaging? Don't show me the final calculation. Show your work.

But even if boss men don't tell Higgins to wear makeup, she does anyway. To her job. Why does she need makeup to host a trade conference? If women aren't objects then why is she painting herself? Makeup accentuates a woman's sexual attractiveness, so the only appropriate time to wear it is to look attractive to men. I'm not saying you have to look good for men, I'm saying that if not wearing makeup for men makes you feel better about yourself, you don't have a strong self. Everyone knows you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, now you're saying the cover of the book influences how the book feels about itself?

How is a father expected to raise a daughter in this reality?
Neither Paltrow nor Higgins can ever know if they succeeded in life because of their talents or because they have a vagina. That information is literally unavailable to them. Every day Higgins has to play a game in her head that men see her as an equal and not as a potential sexual partner, living in an exhausting state of permanent disavowal. No woman can ever know if it wasn't just a decision-making man who saw it as a chance for sex.

They want to both be part of the male world but retain their feminity, to exist in a state of "almost." Their complaints aren't part of a big power struggle. It's simpler than that. Women don't really like being women. They see men as unconstrained, free individuals, and themselves as constrained baby-carriers. And if they can't be free of their biology, then men can't be free either. It's the tri-force of ignorance, arrogance and resentment.

But embracing feminine sexuality can be a powerful thing when used correctly. Higgins and Paltrow should study former UK prime minister Margaret Thatcher. They could learn something important. Christopher Hitchens understood when he wrote about it back in 1997:
Yet, at the party conference and in Shadow Cabinet meetings and in Parliament, she regularly reduced these chaps to mush. It was at the annual conference that, as I stood in the body of the hall, it hit me. That feline smile, the composed but definite body-language, the voice at once stern and cajoling... to say nothing of the Valkyrie helmet of blond locks. My god! She has them in her thrall! And she knows it! The minx knows it! It was for writing this that I got into the hot water of what nobody then called political correctness.
Mark the sequel: Not long afterwards, I was at a reception in the Rosebery Room of the House of Lords. She came. (I’ll try and keep this brief.) A mutual Tory friend offered to introduce us. I agreed with some alacrity. The subject of the moment was Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe. I held one view on this. She held another. The introduction was effected. Did I imagine it, or did she recognize the name of the scribe who had hymned her feminine allure? At once we were embroiled in an argument on the subject of racism and decolonization. I was (I only mention it) correct on my facts as well as my principles. She was lousy on both. But what a bonny fighter! She wouldn’t give an inch. I found myself conceding her a trivial point, and bowing as I did so. She smiled.
“Bow lower,” she said.
Suddenly robbed of volition, I complied. 
“No — much lower.” 
By now near to drowning in complicity and subjection, I obeyed. She withdrew from behind her back a rolled-up copy of the Parliamentary orders of the day, and she gave me a sound smack before I could —how does one put this? — straighten up. I regained the perpendicular in some blushful confusion and difficulty, to see her swing away and look over her shoulder, the words “naughty boy” floating over me in my near trance-like state, as the journo witnesses closed in to say, “What was that all about?” I told them they would never understand, and — what do you know — they never did.
And if you're thinking, "eww, gross. How could anyone find Thatcher sexual?" then you're missing the point. Your mistake is to assume men think the same as women. They don't. Stop lying to yourself. Which brings me to my next point.

IV

Put Nadine Higgins aside for a moment. The male commentary on sexual harassment always makes the same basic mistake that men think women are just female versions of them. They think women are attracted to good looks and repelled by chubby, overweight men with shower fetishes. Wrongolongadingdong.

If your first thought about the Weinstein scandal was, "how could that man get those women" then I know for a damn fact you are both a man and have never been powerful, and more importantly, will never be powerful. A man cannot be powerful and think women are his equal. And I'll risk the blowback by saying a man cannot be powerful and think of anyone as his equal. You have to say out loud - "I am better than them/him/her." Say it straight to their faces, but say it righteously. The magic won't work if you don't believe it. They will eat you alive if they smell even a molecule of insincerity.

People want to be told what to do so badly, they'll listen to anyone. All you have to do is believe the message you're screaming. If your superiority isn't true, then make it true. That's how magic works. And do you know what happens once you think you're better than women? They like it. They respond to it. Women want a leader, they don't want to lead. They want to be able to look at their powerful man and say "he's mine." And if you think I'm only talking about women, then you're more broken than you realise. I'm free next week at 2 pm for a follow-up therapy session.

Most men don't know that women face an incredible amount of pressure to be looked at. The smart ones, like Thatcher and Victoria's Secret models, capitalise on this by trading their sexual attractiveness for resources and power. Which means we're not looking at the Weinstein thing correctly. We have to appreciate how the women who didn't complain see things. The silent ones.

Maybe they're silent because they're scared. Or maybe it's because women are attracted to what a man is, not what he looks like. An ugly millionaire like Weinstein can still get girls because of the status and resources he has, but an ugly female millionaire better have enough rooms in her mansion for ten generations of cats. She's gonna need the wall space.

Women and men aren't the same, even though that's the progressive narrative. But if this were true, did anyone stop to ask what the default desires would be? Would it be the males' or the females'? Why? If you're scratching your head, then try asking it from the system's perspective: which default mode would sell more consumer goods?

V

That's why I wanted to write this. All this talk of sexism and the patriarchy and culture wars are just distractions. The system doesn't care if you're a girl or a boy, it only wants you to act in the required direction. You gave the system you hate a spectacular blowjob, and then try to punish it by making it want you more. From the system's perspective, not only did it still get blown, it liked it even more. Why were these women fighting? "Is it freedom of choice?" Here's a hint, that's never the answer. Who cares what they were fighting for? All anyone wins is more ways to be obedient consumers. Wrong battlefield, ladies.

Men have been leering at women like Nadine Higgins and "abusing their power" for millennia and no one has ever done a thing about it. And yet this event, this stupid story, covered the headlines like a cold wind. Why now? I can't be the only one who noticed the curtain swaying.

Over the weekend, I watched the 1981 movie Quest for Fire. It's a French-Canadian film about cavemen. Shut up, I thought it was cool. Plus it got me thinking.

What bothers me about Higgins lying about her reality is I can feel the Quest for Fire coming out in men. Women keep getting louder and more shrill with their nonsense. Everybody is fake mad with fake outrage because they have nothing else to do. "I'm outraged!" That's such a vaginal term. Men never say that. It's all a game. No one should be "outraged" if they aren't shaking pitchforks. Anything else is just frantic energy.

Did you answer my question about consumerism? In all their "outrage," did Paltrow and Higgins ever pause to ask why so many women are allowed into historically-male positions of power and status? I assume they still believe men are in control, right? So why don't they tell me about the Great War of the Sexes when the Female 3rd Mechanised Infantry Brigade rolled their tank forces over the crushed and defeated Male Army and took power? I think I missed that part in the history books. Oh, wait, that didn't happen. Women didn't take power, they were given it. And now they're yelling? What happens next, ladies?

Did you see the wind move the curtain? I did.

That bitter taste isn't misogyny, it's just consumerism. The system wants you to be a battery. That's why you feel anxious. I think it's great when an individual woman succeeds, but I am asking, how does that help women in general? Female prime ministers reach that level because the system wanted her to. Affirmative action. Feminism. Civil rights. Gender equity. These "political" movements are only allowed to exist because they don't threaten consumerism. More women, gays and minorities as batteries? Sure, bring it on. Don't worry, they won't ever own the capital, and the minimum wage can be lifted gradually so long as the price of goods rises in concert. Oh, you thought that was to help the worker? Yeah, Girl Power!


How long would Paltrow last?

VI

People don't like it when I say this, but I want you to ask how much more money men need from women until they say: "Shut Up!"

Who knows what the maximum wealth of consumption really is? It could have 40 zeroes, or maybe 100. But that's not the end of the spectrum I'm worried about. The dangerous side is the minimum. Once GDP slips and enough people (men) go unemployed, this whole "emancipation" thing goes the way of the dinosaur right quick. Same goes for minorities, by the way. Or did I miss the Great Coloured Revolutionary War as well? Damn history books, always leaving out the good stuff.

Women and minorities don't notice the curtain swaying. And it sways for thee.

The men they keep messing with won’t take the whining forever. Women can yell and scream only because of the restraint of men. And they’re not giving us any credit for abiding by our social contract to choose not to slap them upside the head. Women have to understand that for them to be in positions of authority is not a guaranteed thing. It’s not natural. A few thousand years ago it was Quest for Fire everywhere. Men today are restraining themselves because consumerism rules the world. No one owns any of this, we're all just renting.

If women continue to put us in this little pokey spot with their harpy cackles of "misogyny," "sexism" and "patriarchy," one day men are going to stand up and say, get out of my face. Shut Up.

VII

I saw two tiny, 5'3 female cops walking down a street today. Tiny, tiny lady cops. And I thought: no one should be a cop if they can’t arrest me when they aren't wearing a uniform. Even some male cops are tiny, little baby cops. These people are police because I let them be police. I think all cops should be big enough to stop the largest dude in the city if he decides to get high on meth and start a rampage.

The only reason girl-cops can arrest me is if I let them. In any world of nature, there should only be giant cops. A small blonde lady telling me what I can’t do is just ridiculous. Sweetcheeks, you have five seconds to call two bigger actual cops, or I'm going to chew you like bubblegum. “Ten-four, there’s a guy treating me like a girl!”

At least that would force her to think about WHY calling the precinct solved her problem. In a world that reflects the nature of reality, the social contract and my respect for the law are the only reasons she gets to jab me in the ribs with her stupid stick. It used to be Quest for Fire. I can’t fight a cop. This has nothing to do with hitting females. The social contract stops me from hitting anyone who wears a blue uniform. If the lady cop thinks she has power, it’s only because of the uniform.

I really want you to meditate on what happens when GDP drops for too many quarters. I want you to comprehend what happens when enough men decide the social contract no longer makes sense for men. Because when that happens, there isn't a girl cop in the world who could walk safely by herself. Her authority is based on men allowing the handcuffs to be placed on him. This stuff you call society is really thin. And people like Nadine Higgins and Gweneth Paltrow with their nonsense want to scratch away at this veneer? I hope they know how to catch small mammals for dinner.

When women get a little power, they lose their minds and forget it can all go in the other direction. They are being allowed to invade male spaces because consumerism wants them there. Minorities and women will always feel anxious about living with white men for this reason. They have been given something that can be taken away. The freedom they have is entirely conjectural. It doesn't exist. It's a made-up theory. Deep down, they know this to be true.

The Big Shut Up is coming. You can smell it.

Artificial intelligence is a short con wrapped in a 200+ year long con

I approach this from a different direction: there’s a difference between doing work and doing a job. Jobs change all the time, but productive work is something everyone can do, even if people classify productive work in different ways. Success is defined differently by everyone.

The trick about the AI debate is that it says people should work for companies. Whenever there’s a problem in the market, it’s always the lack of jobs, not lack of work. Economic success is measured by the number of jobs. This makes people think success is being employed by someone else. Company owners don’t want people to compete and beat their company. So they are nudged in the wrong direction when the narrative is that AI will take away jobs. That’s called controlling the capital.

The question you should be asking is: how can I use the AI to monopolise an industry? Forget competition. Competition is for losers. The goal is always to own every property on the game board. I appreciate that AI sounds scary, but think about the competitive advantage to a person who shed that fear early? And how useful would it be if everyone else continues to worry about AI? You're not supposed to have this thought. Can you feel us being nudged in the wrong direction? I can.

I don’t know how much I buy the quasi-religious fears either, to be honest. AI folk display many hallmarks of the superstitious. Just because a person has four degrees in rocket science doesn’t mean they’ve escaped their human nature to see false patterns in noise. Smart people can believe irrational things just as deeply as non-smart people, they just use better arguments to convince themselves.

But nonsense is nonsense, and every generation thinks theirs will be the final one. People, especially in the Christian West, tend to start with the premise that humans are special and somehow apart from the natural world. So long as humans retain centre stage in the world, even if we think we’re destroying it, we’re happy. We have to be the main character in the story of life. But this is just a superstition. For all we know, ants might be the main character.

Also, every culture has some sort of idea that life exists after we die. Why would the “secular” crew in Silicon Valley be different? The AI folk tend to see its creation as both a terrible thing to be feared, while also hoping it will allow them to “upload” their consciousnesses into that AI, and therefore live forever. How exactly is this different from the twin ideas of God and Heaven? It’s the same thing, just with new names.

I don’t believe for a second Musk is an atheist. Nor is Ray Kurzweil. They’re both just crypto-Christians pretending to have transcended the natural human tendency and need for religious and narcissistic belief. Their desire to believe humans are important of course means they think AI will overtake human intelligence and threaten the universe (the universe, for crying out loud!!). The important thing for Musk is not that AI is a threat, but that AI is a threat that humans invented.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

On manners, arrogance and the Game of Nations

George Friedman, who I really like, wrote recently about manners in the political system. It's worth the read. He’s not the first person to reprimand the nastiness, but he’s the first to make me want to write about it.

It's always interesting that Americans want to throw the tea into Boston Harbour while holding onto some of their "father" country's ideals. You've written before about how the American empire is in its adolescent stage with a long way to go, and I agree. The way Americans talk about upper-class and aristocracy is like a teenager yelling at his parents, but stopping short of leaving because they still need to play Xbox later that evening. You either have a revolution and emancipate yourself from the "oppressive" father, or you stay a dependant. You can't split the difference.

The British adopted manners and customs when they were improvements. But it also knew - not suspected, knew - its core customs were superior. It wasn't shy about this. Recall the Indian custom of suttee (sati) in which a widow is immolated to symbolically meet her husband in the afterlife. The British were outraged when they saw this and said to the men with torches it was British custom to execute a person who murders. Suttee stopped pretty quickly after that. When Americans hear this story they scoff and mention colonialism and imperialism, but they are wrong. There are actual inferior practices, manners and customs. The British were proud of their heritage and India is better because of their conviction.

Only an American could write: "...manners are the foundation of democratic life." This is the problem. Americans do not practice manners for their own sake, or because those manners are superior. Americans practice manners because it is good for a specific type of government. No wonder your manners are falling apart. If they depend on the coherence of government, and that political base ruptures, then so do the manners. That is simply not good enough. This is an adolescent structure, and it bothers me that it takes a non-American to see this. What is it about the American system that precludes it from seeing itself as it really is? Where are your mirrors?

It shouldn't matter what political constitution possesses a country. What matters is a shared understanding and acceptance that a particular set of cultural values is maintained. America is singularly bad at doing this. In fact, its elite class not only attack core American values on an hourly basis, it refuses to codify its own set of values lest it become like its "father" the British and allow an upper-class through the back door. As if that would be poison to the present toxic system!?

Instead, the American elite says things like this (Friedman in a response article to his subscribers) :
"The danger, of course, is that manners can be weaponized. They are used to marginalize and ostracize and to consolidate the power of a class. English upper-class table manners were not simply a means of binding society together; they were a method of identifying those who were not in the upper class and a way to justify their exclusion."
And I can feel the contempt for an upper-class oozing out. You don't even try to hide it. But why? What is so bad about an upper-class? Is it because not everyone could get in, by definition? Or is it because you might not get in, and if you can't, then it shouldn't exist? And yet no matter what the American elite tries, an upper-class exists in the US. Sure, it drapes itself with the semiotics of equality: philanthropy, gifts, grants, ripped jeans, baseball caps, driving its own cars, etc. But the poor know what's going on, they always do.

Americans are teenagers. They want to hang out with the underprivileged by day but return to gated communities before the street lights come on. They disparage upper-class manners in a paranoid fear of "dad" but know a lower-class can't exist without its counterpoint. Upper-class is inevitable, so it's up to the members to ensure its values are legitimate, proud and superior. Society depends on the aspirational. Consumerism depends on aspiration. Advertising is based on one thing: happiness, but it must be forever just out of reach. That's upper-class. But Americans are acting like Peter Pan without a NeverLand.

The only way manners can survive in America is if its people accept theirs are objectively better than anyone else's. It might be a matter of faith to believe this, but who cares? Everyone else makes that leap. Why does America always think it has transcended the necessary components of what makes a good society? Why does it fantasise about equality, when all the evidence says it is impossible? Millions of people risk life and limb just to get into the US. They don't do it because of Medicaid and SSI. They do it because migration is a vote with one's feet that the place you depart is inferior to the destination.

Here I have to point out that this specific American disease of cultural relativism has reached our fine shores too. A Chinese girl recently complained to me that too many Asians now live in Auckland, New Zealand. She doesn't like what this city has become and said the more Chinese living in Auckland, the more Auckland mimics China. She left China to get away from that culture. Now it follows her? She was the most defensive person of New Zealand culture I've met in a long time. She knew whatever it is that makes this country New Zealand is superior and should be maintained. I can't tell you the last time I heard that from a native New Zealander. This is a disease, and it's spreading.

That's why we need people like you, George, to confidently state that American manners and customs are better. No argument. State outright and proudly that the country you love must be maintained. Not because "democracy" is your political structure, but because American manners and culture are objectively better. And if they aren't, make them better! You already know how to do this. There's no need to adopt anyone else's.

If you can't do that, then not only will you have failed to learn the central lesson of the rise of Donald Trump, the "barbarians" circling your borders will notice and tear away at everything you love. You have to be arrogant in the Game of Nations. You have to think your culture is worth more. Otherwise, those with deeper cultural convictions and higher bravery will take it all from you.

It's time to grow up, America.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

The Puritan origins of Trump hatred

To Americans, religious conflicts happen in other countries. The Sunni fights the Shia in Iraq, which is why the country is broken. Hindus don’t like Muslims (and vice versa) in South Asia, explaining the nuclear-tipped tension. And Russian Orthodox Christians still don’t get on with Roman Catholics in Europe.

Yet modern Americans think of themselves as "freethinkers" and “progressive,” reinforcing the narrative that faith is something other people do. But how is it that the US displays all the hallmarks of a religious conflict and yet simultaneously denies it? This hatred of Donald Trump is no ordinary revulsion. It deserves a better explanation than “racism” or “nationalism.”

Judging by intellectual descent, teacher-to-student, modern American progressivism is not a secular ideology at all. It is a Christian ideology. "Progressive" originates as an adjective to Christianity. Modern American progressivism is a Puritan revival, with roots in the Social Gospel movement of the late 19th century. There is no serious historical dispute of this – it is traced superbly over 350 years in George McKenna’s The Puritan Origins of American Patriotism.

The title is slightly misleading – it might as well have been called The Puritan Origins of Everything Everyone Believes, Or At Least Is Supposed To – and it focuses a little too much on the US and not enough on English thinkers. McKenna should have at least started at the Cromwellian period. But it’s a masterly intellectual history of the modern universe and it’s published by Yale, so it must be right.

Studies like this show left-wing “atheism” is really just an extreme version of the Puritan opposition to idolatry in religion. The Puritans hated Christmas for exactly the same reasons: as an idolatrous, superstitious festival. Removing the theological component once and for all is simply the natural last step in the Puritanisation of Christianity.

The conversion of American Puritanism – whose mainstream always has been, and always will be, whatever young people are taught at Harvard – from a Christian sect into a secular/civic religion is a fascinating process. Note, for instance, the political importance of institutions such as the YMCA a hundred years ago. The YMCA was holy when Washington was unholy. Now that progressivism has captured the Beltway, what is the YMCA? A gym.

Also, note separation of church and state doesn’t apply to progressivism because it is “atheistic.” Who cares where the lines are drawn, ask who draws the lines. History shows progressivism’s historical roots are in America's most prestigious and powerful form of Christianity – Massachusetts Protestantism. Only 60 or 70 years ago, this belief system was described as not just religious but fanatically religious.

The basic problem with conservative critiques of socialism is their refusal to recognise that socialism is fundamentally Anglo-American in origin. They focus on thinkers such as Karl Marx who, while born a German Jew, did most of his work in the British Museum and, when he wasn't leeching off Friedrich Engels, made his pay-check by writing columns for Horace Greeley's New York Tribune. Distracted by Marx's enormous beard, they miss the obvious (and much more embarrassing) WASP-Puritan connection.

Marxism has little to do at all with the modern progressive movement. Until the past few decades, the socialist and radical movement in the Anglo-American world was always associated with Christianity. Before the 1950s, the US as a Christian nation was generally accepted. But when the Warren Court revised this tradition by dramatically expanding civil rights, civil liberties, judicial power and the federal power, it had the letter of the law on its side. Effectively, progressivism rose to power through Christianity and then used that power to "pull up the ladder" – a classic Machiavellian manoeuvre.

It’s all the same Christian tradition. The details change. The details will always change. In French theologian John Calvin's day, they took Corinthians seriously that men with long hair offended God. Today, burning fossil fuels is bad for the environment. Logicians can argue either point. All kinds of evidence – biblical or scientific – can be deployed. But no progressive will ever conclude burning fossil fuel is good for the environment.

Religions should not be analysed by their doctrinal elements, which are constantly shifting and often intentionally confusing. It’s much more enlightening to judge them by the organisational structures they create in the real world. Only then can one understand this strange Trump hatred, and why progressives change the subject every time someone mentions Edward Bellamy's utopian novel, Looking Backward.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

A few thoughts on MMP and a constitution

I still don’t quite understand why we’re experimenting with MMP in New Zealand. It was imposed by Harvard and the State Department as a punishment for Germany after 1945. They did so to avoid a single party gaining power in that country through legitimate democratic means.

What cracks me up is that today the CDU/CSU and the SPD (its two main options) are pretty much the same party, but they can get away with forming a “grand coalition” only because they both comport with Harvard’s ideology and State's plans. So, in reality, the German system is set up like this because Washington doesn’t want certain types of democratic ideals gaining power. It’s a specific kind of prevention. Hmm, I wonder what those certain types could be…?

Why would NZ want a Constitution? Wellington already harmonises itself with Washington on damn near everything (at least, on everything important). I’m not saying I like being an American satrapy, but the point of a Constitution is to codify a government based on one’s own ideals, not someone else’s. And since NZ’s public policy “experts” aren’t anywhere close to being on the sufficient level to even begin thinking for themselves, a Constitution would just be theatre and unnecessary friction. Why bother?

And as far as I’m concerned, the longer MMP continues to fragment political power here and maintain the public illusion that voters “turf the buggers out” every three years, the better. Why? Because the system of government exported by Harvard is socialism, and socialism at its core is the rule of experts. So, under this structure, if "public policy" experts (mandarins, professors, journalists, etc) are able to get on with running the machine, the smoother it all flows. That’s the reality. Your vote is just a way to keep you busy. People don’t like it when I say this, but it’s true nonetheless.

Experts hate democracy like the devil and want politics shelved indefinitely. But there are still too many old people alive who believe in the WWII Allied propaganda and think democracy is the best of all possible governments.

It doesn’t ultimately matter because the civil service works on the scale of a full career, not 3-year cycles. Those officials will be around for 40-50 years perhaps. They’ve got plenty of time to chip away and side-line politics. We can already see democracy being belittled in the minds of younger people. For example, who hasn’t heard: “[insert politician here] is a [policy] denier! Listen to the [ministry] and [university]! They know best!”

The propaganda is simple: voting is good because it limits your political action to a single, benign action with zero consequence.