The Ideological Method in Action: No Middle Ground on Vaccines.

I hate e-drama, but I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: you don’t choose drama, it chooses you. Recently on LinkedIn, a woman named Haley Lawrence made a post that popped up in my feed for some reason, since I’m not following her. Personally, I thought that the post was perfectly innocuous: she said “not anti-vaxx, I’m against mandates and coercion.” You can view the post here, at least while it’s still up, though you should also visit my archived version, this way you can see the post as I last commented on it, since comments are being deleted left and right, the post itself could be deleted at some point, and Haley could even get kicked off the platform. The archived version doesn’t show everything, so the comments pertinent to this article are below:

Frank Marcovitz: I disagree

Haley Lawrence: And that’s your choice to disagree and guess what? I respect that.

Me (replying to Haley): Unfortunately, this is why people like us (i.e. those who value personal liberty and medical privacy) always lose out to the authoritarian busybodies – WE respect THEIR choices, THEY do not respect OURS. Keep a sharp eye out for the strawmen, false equivalences, and ad hominem attacks that will be (well, they are already) thrown about in attempt to morally brow-beat us into compliance.

Trenton Schwarzer (replying to Frank): You disagree with ——- what, freedom of choice?

Steve Mccullough (replying to Trenton): knowingly killing others

Steve Mccullough (replying to me): respect your right to kill other? [sic]

Me (replying to Steve): That is a blatant strawman and a false equivalence. You just did exactly as I warned you would. Care to try this again, you narcissistic busybody? [this comment was deleted by LinkedIn, presumably after being reported, though over a dozen people liked it; I eventually re-posted it and left out the “narcissistic busybody” bit]

As more and more people piled on, arguing on both sides of the vaccine mandate argument, most of the comments were absolutely vitriolic tripe, though the authoritarians were clearly much more hostile, inarticulate and condescending. There was only one break, and that was when Shree Nanguneri entered the chat, trying to be diplomatic.

Shree (replying to me):

Your point is valid and the magical question may lie in how we work this inclusively to benefit everyone?

I am sure there has to be a way to work it out collaboratively and in a civil manner between all of us otherwise intelligent people, I suppose.

Why not ask questions on how solutions can be proposed instead of accusing the other side as killers or the other way as depriving people of their constitutional rights and freedom?

Your experiences please?

Me:

While I’d like to think that there is some sort of middle ground that can be reached, I’m afraid that there are far too many people who simply will not compromise on their own inherently incompatible positions, thus giving a sense of realism to an otherwise false dichotomy. The only thing that works in that case is if the belligerent parties simply agree to stay as far away from each other as possible.

In a perfect world, we could all be rational adults about it and simply agree to disagree, but it’s really hard to maintain a mature composure when there are a few voices screeching like spoiled children. You can’t take people like that seriously, so I like to indulge my own inner child and make fun of them. It usually blows up in my face (if you haven’t gathered, I’ve dealt with a lot of unreasonable people), but it’s tremendously cathartic and a far healthier coping mechanism than binge drinking.

Concerning vaccines, specifically, I am reminded of the old saying “you catch more flies with a teaspoon of honey than a gallon of vinegar.” If 100% vaccination is the goal, the hostile moral brow-beating of the “vaccine hesitant” has to stop, simple as.

Does this answer any of your questions?

As I have mentioned before, authoritarians are narcissists, and I’m not the first person to point this out. Narcissists are not willing to make concessions, and therefore, neurotypical people must continually make concessions for them, ultimately giving them exactly what they want. In the grander scheme, narcissistic politicians (which is redundant these days) foment the death of a liberal society, because a liberal society is based around a “live and let live” attitude, in which people are free to make their own choices, but are not free to impose those choices on others. The narcissist does not understand the very concept of personal preference, and therefore does not believe that people are free to do any different from them. When people like this make policy decisions, the result is totalitarianism. However, in the upside-down world of totalitarianism, if you do not obey all tyrannical diktats, then you are infringing on the rights of others, specifically the “rights” of the tyrant to dictate how you live your life. As I mentioned in my article about the ideological method, as the debate proceeds, then the proponent of the flawed ideology (in this case, medical tyranny) will resort to increasingly fallacious arguments and pure emotional appeals in a desperate attempt to morally brow-beat their opponents into submission – “if you don’t agree with me, you are literally killing people.” The tyrant cries out in pain as he whips you for disobeying him. It’s effective, but it’s fallacious nonetheless.

So, let’s break this down: there are two extreme positions regarding vaccines. On one end, you have the totalitarians, who believe that people who do not get vaccinated are walking public health hazards, therefore vaccines should be mandatory, and that this “should not be up for debate.” Those very words, “this should not be up for debate,” is a clear indication that they are not willing to move from this position by any measurable amount. On the other end, you have the anti-vaxxers, who believe that all vaccines are poison and that no-one should take them. Oddly enough, I have never heard of an anti-vaxxer who thinks that vaccines should be outlawed. Already, we have a bit of a disparity, since the anti-vaxxers don’t think that anyone should be coerced into doing as they do. But then, there is no limit to tyranny, the way that there is to liberty. Logically, the middle ground between anti-vax and medical tyranny would be vaccine choice: people are free to get vaccinated if they wish, and private enterprises are free to discriminate against vaccinated or unvaccinated people at their own pleasure. Haley and I both support the middle ground position, though our personal choices are different: she doesn’t want the CoVID-19 vaccine, whereas I’ve already received it (I’m not saying which one, since my vaccination status is none of anyone’s business anyway, I’m just revealing it to make a point).

When the totalitarians inevitably lose the argument, they must shift the goal-posts and either argue about philosophy or freedom of speech, which are somewhat intertwined. The free speech argument that they use is usually a variation of “hate speech is not free speech” or “harmful misinformation is not free speech.” Totalitarians generally pay lip service to freedom of speech and the problem of censorship, but this is a motte-and-bailey argument. They have different working definitions of censorship and free speech from those of us who actually support freedom of speech. This they exposed after Steve called Yelena Rakhimov “Hitler” later on in the chat. Since this is a far spicier insult than anything I’ve said on LinkedIn, there’s no way that this isn’t a violation of LinkedIn’s terms of service, yet it’s still there as of me writing this article.

Steve Mccullough: where’s the jeapordy, hitler. You get to decide who lives and dies?

Yelena’s initial response to this comment is no longer there, oddly enough. She made fun of him for calling her “Hitler.” I suggested, tongue-in-cheek, that she report his comment for abuse. I could have done so myself, but since the comment wasn’t directed at me, it’s not really my decision.

Me: You should report his comment for abuse. Steve is clearly a troll, he’s just here to disrupt the conversation and rile people up, not contribute anything useful.

Yelena: I don’t get easily insulted. I know how human mind works. People usually use insults when they run out of arguments. So I take it as a win.

Me: Steve ran out of arguments a long time ago. Meanwhile, Wales Nematollahi thinks I’m in favour of cancel culture because I want this already wonky comments section to not be so cluttered with such utter tripe. If LinkedIn’s comments functioned more like Disqus, this wouldn’t be an issue, I’d just block them both and get on with my day.

As I said, it’s not my decision, it’s hers. If she wants to let him get away with it and leave the comment there for all to see, that works just as well as getting him in trouble with the website. However, that’s not the standard that Steve’s ideological allies believe in, as I explain with the very comment that I mentioned.

Wales Nematollahi (replying to me): So you want cancel culture.

Me: That’s another strawman. Blocking a troll because he’s disrupting a conversation with total nonsense and cluttering up the comments section does not infringe on free speech. But then, this entire PLATFORM has devolved into the sort of infantile nonsense that one would previously see only on Twitter, so I’m not surprised you’d throw that at me.

The reason that Wales’s comment is a strawman (though one could also make the case that it’s a false equivalence, the two fallacies are quite similar) is because the decision to block or mute a person, if that option is available, is not “cancelling” them. Freedom of speech includes the freedom to choose what speech you are exposed to. If you wish to live in an echo chamber, that is your right. If you wish not to see irrelevant nonsense, that is your right. Reporting a single comment for abuse will see that comment removed, not the removal of the person’s account. I shouldn’t have to make this argument, but Wales just wanted to make me look bad, so he continued.

Wales: Your reply to me bolsters my belief that you support the far right wing version of cancel culture. You just don’t seem to like the fact that these flatheads aren’t echo chambers. Wouldn’t you be happier in 8kun or Parler?

Me: Great, another strawman, combined with a fallacy of projection. You know who really wants an echo chamber? Look in the mirror. Oh, wait, you already are. Seriously, why is your side allowed to be so vitriolic while brow-beating people, but no-one else is allowed to get annoyed and retaliate? Why the onus on ME to keep MY cool, but you can be as nasty as you please? Double standards? Seriously, next time you reply to me, leave out the logical fallacies, and make a real argument.

Wales has not replied to me. Personally, I don’t think he even knows what 8kun or Parler actually are, but he’s simply been told that they are “far-right echo chambers,” so they were convenient things he could throw at me to make me look bad. I don’t even know why he would assume that I’m “far right,” other than the fact that I called his ideological ally a “troll.” All but two of the comments that I made on that particular LinkedIn post are documented in this article, and I doubt anyone could honestly evaluate me as “far right” from those comments alone, unless that person is working with a definition of “far right” that includes everyone who does not believe exactly as they do. “Far right” is nothing more than a socio-political pejorative that leftists and authoritarians (and authoritarian leftists in particular) use against their detractors for ease of dismissal.

I’m starting to really hate LinkedIn, but if I can use it to direct more people here to my WordPress blog or to Hive, then it’s worth the headaches that I suffer until I get kicked off the platform – just as Shaista Justin was. Yes, I’m throwing an awful lot of names around today. It must be done, because in these trying times, we need to know whom we can trust.

Brainlets, Midwits, Ideologues, and Grifters

In my previous editorial, I explained precisely what the ideological method is. However, it is important to note that not everyone who uses the ideological method is an ideologue. Most are just repeating the lies that they’ve been taught to regurgitate. They are the useful idiots, and while some are true believers, most know better, but remain dishonest because they stand to benefit from their continued sycophancy.

To begin, only two of the terms in the title are mutually exclusive: brainlet and midwit. “Brainlet” is a colloquialism for someone who is quite stupid, usually with a two-digit IQ. A midwit, by contrast, has an IQ between 110 and 125, though not all people in that IQ range are midwits. Midwits are intellectually dishonest individuals who are perfect examples of the Dunning-Kruger effect, and most show the signs of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. They are typically popular, straight-A students in public school, and in homeschooling circles, are derisively referred to as “pleasantly gifted.” Brainlets who use the ideological method do so because they have been told to. Midwits engage in intellectual dishonesty of their own volition, because they wish to avoid any possibility of being wrong. Unlike the brainlet, who is obedient because they know no other choice, the midwit necessarily has a vested interest in propping up flawed ideologies: the protection of their ego.

The Dunning-Kruger effect visualised

In the context of an ideological argument, midwits will use every dirty trick that true ideologues use, so distinguishing between the two is damn near impossible in such a setting. However, midwits generally aren’t creative enough to come up with their own ideology, and instead must adopt the ideology of another that has egotistical appeal, usually some derivative of Hegelianism. For this reason, midwits revel in their own sycophancy, whereas true ideologues usually aren’t anyone’s sycophants. The true ideologue, as opposed to the colloquial ideologue (the colloquial definition of “ideologue” includes midwits, and that the definiton that I used when I warned people not to debate ideologues), is creative enough to invent their own ideology, and is probably far too intelligent to qualify as a midwit, though they are typically afflicted with the exact same mental illnesses (personality disorders ARE mental illnesses, despite what the DSM might say). True ideologues usually know at some level that their ideology is flawed, which is precisely why they overwhelmingly reject empiricism. If they can throw out the very basis of rational thought, then they can assert whatever they want, and still be completely correct by their own standards. Midwits, on the other hand, don’t think this far ahead, so they can be easily rebuked simply by pointing out the severe flaws in their argumentation itself.

A true ideologue is, by definition, a true believer of their own bullshit, which is why they must internalise their own apologetics in order to comfortably reinforce their delusions. However, there is another type of person, again usually afflicted with the same personality disorder, and again probably too intelligent to be a midwit, who uses the same methods to propagate an ideology, but they know it’s nonsense: the grifter. “Grift” is the diminutive form of “graft,” which is a practise in botany of splicing two different plants together, usually a male and female of the same species, such that a single plant may produce fruit (not all plants are natural hermaphrodites). Once upon a time, however, the word “graft” had an additional meaning, and that was a con such as a ponzi scheme. A “grafter” was a large-scale con artist or corrupt politician, whereas a “grifter” was a small-scale con artist, as one might describe a sleazy used car salesman. Since the word “grafter” has since fallen out of favour, “grifter” can now be applied to any con artist or corrupt politician. Like the ideologue and the midwit, the grifter has a vested interest in propagating a flawed ideology, but whereas the ideologue and the midwit do such to satisfy their egos, the grifter does so purely for material gain.

Grifters, by themselves, are not very dangerous. Since they are concerned purely with material gain, they don’t have a vested interest in eliminating competing ideas or relentlessly pursuing the one person that they are unable to con. However, when a grifter decides to propagate someone else’s dangerous ideology for profit, they become a useful idiot for someone who is genuinely dangerous. Funny, I did say that grifters are usually too smart to be midwits, didn’t I? I guess you have to be rather intelligent to be a useful idiot, after all, there are some ideas so stupid that only academics will believe them.

Grifters and ideologues are not mutually exclusive, but instead two extremes on the ends of a sliding scale. One on end, there is the pure grifter, who knows that what they are peddling is total nonsense, but they do it anyway because they have something to gain. On the other, there is the pure ideologue, who truly believes that what they are peddling is true and good, and they feel compelled to confront opposition to it in order to spread the words and satisfy their own conscience. However, it is very difficult to find a person who fits one of these extremes. After all, sometimes it is necessary to convince yourself that the nonsense you’re peddling is true, in order to put on a convincing act. Likewise, no true ideologue has such an unshakable faith in their ideology that they will subject it to meaningful criticism, and every one of them must, by necessity, resort to some measure of intellectual dishonesty in order to promote their ideology. Incidentally, this is precisely why I refer to the slow creep of global tyranny as the “Great Authoritarian Grift,” because even if the people promoting bigger government genuinely believe that it is a good idea, the GAG itself is a power grab that benefits only the political class, and some of them have admitted that in hot mike moments; to them, true believers in the beneficence of big government, midwitted or otherwise, are simply the useful idiots required to brow-beat the rest of us into submission. The GAG is one grift that cannot succeed unless everyone is complicit in it, because, in the words of Jacob Tothe, the subject is not content in his servitude if others are free.

Determining the type of person promoting an ideology requires an evaluation of both their character and their motive. For this, the RAVEN method can be used:

Reputation

Ability to see

Vested interest

Expertise

Neutrality

This is a method that I became aware of thanks to The Pholosopher, and she goes into it in detail here. Of course, as with most things, the closer you look, the more complicated it is. Reputation and expertise are relatively easy to determine; vested interest and neutrality are not, as they require some digging into a person’s past behaviour. I’ve already touched on the subject of vested interest here, and perhaps I’ll devote a future article to each letter of the helpful corvid. Thanks to the internet, digging into a person’s past is a lot easier now than it used to be, and if you are deeply entrenched in internet culture, determining whether or not someone is a troll is quite easy. Some people act like trolls in real life, however, and those can be some tough nuts to crack, as far as their motive is concerned. Trolls, incidentally have a vested interest in keeping up their act: they find people’s reactions to be amusing. I’m speaking from experience, by the way, since I like trolling the crypto-tankies (authoritarian collectivists masquerading as left-leaning libertarians) and getting them to show their true colours; it’s easier than you think, by the way, since they will compulsively go after nonexistent bait and thus can be tricked with almost no effort into making a reverse motte-and-bailey argument, all while hilariously accusing their detractors of doing exactly what they are doing.

With all of this said, perhaps now you are sufficiently armed with the necessary knowledge to quickly assess with whom you may end up in an ideological argument online. After all, I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, but don’t bother debating ideologues, but how would you know if someone is an ideologue without debating them or watching their conduct during a debate with someone else? Well, I never said that it was a quick process. Perhaps some people can form quick assessments of a person’s character, but I can’t, I have little to no social instinct, and must instead make a very careful analysis.

Remember, don’t debate ideologues, because you can’t win, but you can still mock and debunk them behind their backs. The same goes for grifters. Midwits and brainlets are fair game, however. Be nice to the brainlets, because you may actually be able to win them over. Midwits that you victimise, however, will forever be useful enemies to you; they can hold one hell of a grudge, but that can work in your favour, since their detractors will inevitably come across their unhinged bitch-fests about your counterarguments.

The Ideological Method

This post is long overdue. I have used this phrase multiple times, but have never fully explained it, and that is to be rectified now. Those of you who stand for truth, regardless of whether or not that truth is comfortable, need to know what you’re up against. Effectively, the ideological method is the exact opposite of the scientific method, but there is much more to it than that. Thus, before the ideological method can be properly defined, it is necessary to define the scientific method for contrast.

The scientific method is the process of creating a hypothesis, performing experiments to test the hypothesis, observing the results of those experiments, and drawing a conclusion from those observations. The conclusion will either confirm or debunk the hypothesis, and in many cases, hypotheses are formed from observation of the natural world to begin with. Any hypothesis that is inconsistent with the facts must be either discarded or revised. The philosophy that this method is based on is called empiricism; the opposing philosophy is called sophistry. Empiricism is a very simple philosophy, whereas sophistry is absurdly complicated.

The ideological method is the process of creating a presupposition and accumulating only the data that supports it, whether by very careful selection or outright fabrication. Any facts that are inconsistent with the presupposition are discarded. For those who are familiar with the logical fallacies, this is the process of cherry-picking, or painting bulls-eyes round arrows. However, there is a lot more to the ideological method than that. Every logical fallacy has been used to defend flawed ideas, and every flawed idea requires logical fallacies and other forms of intellectual dishonesty in its defense. It requires a great deal more intelligence and creativity in order to craft a sophistic defense of an idea than an empirical defense.

It takes a great deal more intelligence to lie than to tell the truth. Lies also require creativity, from the small amount needed to twist the truth in one’s favour, to the large amount to fabricate a tall tale. Because most people lack the intellectual capability to craft a big lie, and naïvely assume that more intelligent individuals are both honest and benevolent, the plebians of society have a greater proclivity for believing eloquent sophistry than blunt empiricism. A comforting lie is easier to accept than an uncomfortable truth.

“Society has moved away from what works and moved toward what sounds good.” – Thomas Sowell

“If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit.” – Aron Ra

When I warned my readers not to debate ideologues, I did so with good reason. Professional pompous postmodernist pontificators, or as I like to call them, forsaken princesses, are widely known to toss word salads at their ideological opponents, and the winner is the one who uses the most flowery language. This is nothing new, in fact this is the very criticism that Plato (423-347 BC) made of sophists, and Cicero (106-43 BC) later echoed the exact same sentiment in his repudiation of direct democracy, because the public is too easily manipulated by the honeyed words of demagogues. However, while word salad may work on the uninformed, easily impressed plebians who enjoy watching political debates or internet blood-sports, the deceptive wiles of the forsaken princesses ultimately fail to convince anyone who has a sufficient command of language to be able to see through the veil of nonsense.

A quote commonly attributed to Winston Churchill is that a lie gets halfway round the world before the truth can even get its pants on. There is little evidence to suggest that Churchill actually said this, but the point still stands. In addition to flowery language that entertains more than it informs, the ideological method is more about propagating control than propagating truth. Truth moves slowly by design, because the truth is complicated. The big lie, however, whatever lie that may be at the time, is usually quite simple, but merely cloaked in complexity. Again, we see opposites: the truth itself is complicated, but the method to determine it is simple, whereas the big lie is simple, but the method to justify it is complicated. Since the best lies all have a grain of truth to them, the ideological method partially relies on self-evident truths in order to stand up to superficial scrutiny. Here is where we see the invocation of the second logical fallacy: the double standard.

The double standard is one of several logical fallacies that fall into the category of motte-and-bailey arguments, so-named for a type of early Medieval castle. In such a structure, the bailey is a small fortified town where most of the inhabitants live, easy to access but difficult to defend. When under heavy siege, the defenders will retreat to the heavily fortified motte, which is difficult to access, but easy to defend. In an ideological argument, the bailey is a generally unpalatable idea that the ideologue wishes to propagate. When subjected to criticism, however, the ideologue will retreat to the proverbial motte, which is a much more palatable idea that many more people would agree to.

For those of you who know Medieval history, you will be aware that castles were as much offensive structures as defensive ones. Castles projected power, since they were places where armies could safely gather and launch attacks from. Another type of motte-and-bailey argument is the armoured strawman, which one could also call the hollow steelman. The steelman is the most charitable interpretation of an opposing position, and generally the most honest. A strawman, on the other hand, is a deliberate misrepresentation of an opposing position that is designed to make it look as weak or malicious as possible, and it is a logical fallacy in itself. Since the strawman is such a well-known tactic, thanks to creationists in the early days of YouTube, it is such an obvious fallacy that virtually no-one uses it on its own anymore. Instead, in a deceptive effort to appear honest, ideologues will first prop up a steelman, but then later transform it into a strawman when it is convenient for their position. One could also call this a bait-and-switch method of argumentation, and I find it profoundly telling that ideologues habitually accuse their opponents of “baiting” them whenever they ask an inconvenient question, because this is the fallacy of projection.

Accusing one’s opponent of that which one is guilty is another fallacy. If the opponent is actually guilty of this accusation, it is called tu quoque (Latin for “you too”), or the pot calling the kettle black; if the opponent is not guilty, it is called projection, or the pot calling the silverware black. Curiously, this is one of Saul Alinsky’s rules for radicals, taken directly from the book bearing that title. Rules For Radicals effectively teaches the ideological method, in other words, it directly advocates for people to use intellectually dishonest tactics in order to win ideological arguments. This is nothing new, either. All religions advocate for the exact same thing, teaching people to use the ideological method to propagate their beliefs. Oh, but curiouser and curiouser, there is one particular fallacy that I once thought was unique to religious apologetics, yet I have since encountered it typed by the fingers of secular ideologues.

It is no secret that the most vocal atheists, anti-theists in particular, were once highly religious people. The more radical and dangerous the religion that they once belonged to, the more they oppose religion later in life. In order to dismiss their arguments, however, religious apologists will attempt to smear these individuals as “never having been true believers.” This is not an invention of the apologist making the argument, but instead an instruction in many religious doctrines: he who loses faith was never a true believer to begin with. This is a justification for constantly testing the adherents’ faith, usually through abuse. The statement itself, however, is a “no true Scotsman” fallacy, though there is more to it. It presents itself as a false Scotsman, but it is also a strawman, implying that the person was not sufficiently indoctrinated into the religion to keep the faith in the face of an inconvenient truth (which is another curious admission), and it is generally meant as an attack on the person’s character, and thus an ad hominem fallacy. The dismissal of an ideological traitor as “never having been a true believer” is therefore a three-for-one fallacy, one of many compound fallacies. A compound fallacy is any single statement that contains more than one logical fallacy, and amounts to telling multiple lies at once. This is how it is possible to tell more lies in a sentence than there are words in that sentence. By the way, the secular example that I came across was the statement that “anyone who voted for Bernie Sanders and is happy with the job that Trump is doing never believed in what Bernie really stood for.” This statement is flat-out wrong, because the main reason to vote for either Sanders or Trump was simply a dissatisfaction with the political establishment (represented by Hillary Clinton in 2016). Of course, believing that a vote for a politician is a total endorsement of that politician’s stated position is a fallacious assumption; generally speaking, people vote against politicians as much as they vote for them, if not more so.

Every politician has a personality cult, though some have it to a greater extent than others. In a representative democracy, it is important to remember that not everyone who votes for a particular politician is a part of that politician’s personality cult! Generally speaking, people who accuse those who vote for a different politician from the one that they support of being in a personality cult are themselves in a personality cult. This is another accusation of that which one is oneself guilty. In a two-party political system, this is also a false dichotomy, and therefore another compound fallacy. Political zealots have also been known to level the accusation of “being part of the problem” not only at their political opposites, but also at those who are apolitical and don’t vote at all. Depending on the motivation and the exact rhetoric used in the accusation, one could spot the fallacies of projection, false dichotomy, strawman, and who knows what else, potentially resulting in a compound fallacy containing six or more fallacies. There is a good reason that politics is said to be even more irrational than religion.

Since the ideological method is the basis of debate, rather than investigation, it is more important to be convincing than earnest. As the debate continues and all fallacious statements cloaked in a veneer of factual accuracy are debunked, the ideologue will resort to emotional appeals, since emotions are easier to manipulate than knowledge. This is true not only within individual debates, but within larger societal debates. When the “factual” claims of an ideological movement have all been debunked, the ideologues will default to emotional appeals in each new encounter with their ideological detractors, attempting to morally brow-beat people into compliance, while smearing those who stand in their way, undaunted by their screeching, as “cold, uncaring, and violent” thus projecting their sociopathic lack of compassion onto their enemies. At first, this begins as pure projection, but when those who desire truth and freedom begin to fight back, it turns into tu quoque, partially vindicating the vicious ideologues, and that’s how they win over more people. Ultimately, appeasement doesn’t work, standing your ground doesn’t work, fighting back doesn’t work, and beating them doesn’t work; ideologues have answers for all of these. The proper approach is to mock them, and then walk away when they demand you fight them, but pursue them when they attempt to flee; the spectacle you must put on for the plebians is to show the vicious ideologues that they are not your equal, but instead are beneath contempt. Disengagement is the key to victory, in other words, debunk, but do not debate.

Spooky Language

Words have power, they evoke emotions and convey ideas, one of which is fear, but it doesn’t need to be. I decided to write this article as an antidote to fear, because people are afraid of things they ought not to be – one of which is me.

I’ve been told that I scare people. While you might not guess from looking at me (I’m 170 cm, 57kg, and I look like a girl), when it comes to the ideas I believe in and the labels I wear unironically, it’s easy to see why people might find me a bit scary. However, what you demystify, you disarm, and what you daemonise, you attract the impressionable to. My beliefs are not as radical or nihilistic as they may seem, and I’ll explain why, by breaking down the actual definitions of several spooky labels that I wear.

Atheist – a person who lacks belief in any deities. Anyone who is not convinced that an actual deity exists is an atheist, and this definition certainly applies to me. This is a label that typically alarms religious people, because there is a common misconception that atheists are opposed to a belief in god, and while some atheists certainly do oppose any sort of religious belief, there is a different term that describes such a belief: anti-theism. All anti-theists are atheists, but not all atheists are anti-theists. Furthermore, I’d like to take this opportunity to remind American Christians that Madalyn Murray O’Hair did not take prayer out of schools, she took state-mandated prayer out of school, because it is a violation of the First Amendment for any public institution to show deferential treatment toward any religion. Prayer cannot be banned in school, because that too, would violate the First Amendment. For the most part, I take no issue with Christians, in fact I’m more likely to have disagreements with my fellow atheists. Just don’t try to convert me – that would not go well, because for everything that you may think requires a divine explanation, I have a secular answer, including morality.

Anarchist – a person who believes that government is not necessary for a functioning society. There is a common misconception that anarchists are violent, irrational and hell-bent on abolishing society as we know it. Again, some anarchists are violent, but an awful lot of self-described anarchists aren’t interested in abolishing government itself, they wish to abolish all vestiges of the current power structures and replace them with another system of government, albeit with a name other than “government.” At some point, the revolution ends, and the revolutionaries become the political establishment. Most self-described anarchists, especially the violent ones, are secretly totalitarians. This does not describe me. My desire is to promote greater individualism and slowly, peacefully, erode the government’s power until there is none left. Anarchism is the ultimate goal of true libertarianism (an ideology no longer promoted by the US Libertarian Party), that is to keep making the State as small and unobtrusive as possible – therefore, the logical conclusion is no government at all. I don’t think that this goal is achievable (certainly not in my lifetime), it is simply an ideal that we need to keep working toward if we value liberty. Unlike many of my fellow anarchists, even those with whom I ideologically align perfectly, I am willing to participate in the civic process (this includes voting) if there is a possibility that it will help to curtail government control. In other words, in order to create a society with the smallest amount of government interference possible, we must strive to eliminate it altogether, because it is the logical limit of the saying “he who governs least, governs best.”

Capitalist – a person who engages in Free Market activities and is able to keep the resources they earn and do with them as they see fit. Most capitalists know exactly what capitalism is, but most non-capitalists, socialists in particular (not every non-capitalist is a socialist; you can divest yourself of the free market but not believe in socialism), believe in a strawman parody of capitalism that is purely exploitative and reinforces entrenched power structures, such that western society is “socialism for the rich, dog-eat-dog capitalism for the rest.” This is flat-out wrong, because wage slaves don’t engage in capitalism. Not only that, but there is a constant conflation of “capitalist” with “bourgeois,” “hierarchical,” “selfish,” and “greedy.” Not all capitalists are wealthy, not all believe in static class structures (in fact, most don’t, because capitalism is a system that enables social mobility, rather than stifling it), not all are selfish (some give quite generously to charity) and not all are greedy. Of course, if you are a socialist, then you probably think that “capitalism” is the same as “corporatism,” the latter of which I am opposed to as well. Furthermore, if you are a socialist, you probably believe that being generous makes a person a socialist – it does not. Socialism is a system of forced altruism, and forced altruism is false altruism, which is why socialism tends to foment resentment, rather than good will.

Liberal – effectively, a person who adheres to philosophy based on a “live and let live” attitude. This may seem like a contradiction, since I’ve already revealed that I’m an anarchist, but in this context, I’m not referring to political beliefs, but in social beliefs. Many conservatives, and also many self-described liberals as well, mistakenly believe that liberalism is “left-wing.” I’ve already discussed this at length, but having liberal views on social issues does not make a person left-wing. Liberal simply means “permissive,” which means that having “conservative” views on social issues simply makes a person an authoritarian, and what is “conservative” is completely arbitrary, and entirely dependent on the context of the culture that one is examining. Being opposed to discrimination based on ethnicity or gender is a liberal position, but it is in no way leftist. Being opposed to the criminalisation of certain substances (alcohol, marijuana, etc.) is also a liberal position, and in no way leftist. People who are familiar with the political compass may disagree, but while I like the political compass itself, I’ve already addressed the problems with political compass tests, and I plan to examine those flaws in greater detail some time in the future.

Conservative – in the context of finance, a synonym for “frugal.” I have already explained the paradox of how it is possible to be both a liberal and a conservative at the same time, even when the context is not limited to finance. My point is that I’m not a big spender as it is, I resent having to tighten my own belt because the government keeps loosening its own as it becomes increasingly bloated, and I’m sick of hearing that “socialism is the solution,” because anyone who understands economics knows it would actually exacerbate a lot of the current problems. Then again, people who are fiscally liberal, even those who aren’t outright socialist, are usually such because they can’t do basic math, and therefore can’t manage money.

Ex-Soviet – self-explanatory, at least in the ideological sense; I’m too young to have grown up in the Soviet Union. A lot of people that I’m ideologically aligned with currently get spooked when I tell them that I used to a communist, and not a fruity, woke anarcho-communist, but a tankie, an unironic Soviet, and a Stalinist specifically (I believed some weird shit as a teen-ager). In fact, the woke nonsense was the main reason I abandoned communism in the first place, because back when I still was a communist, I learned about the existence of social justice, and upon discovering that most SJWs, whom I have always despised, were also communists, I almost blew my lunch. Upon going further down the rabbit hole of communist philosophy (and I was already deep enough that I was a Lysenkoist before I had ever even heard of Trofim Lysenko), I realised that the soc-jus nonsense was simply the purest form of communism, and I was cured almost instantly. Mind you, there are still certain things about the Soviet system that I like – mostly having to do with public education and the arts – but they are the decidedly meritocratic, non-communist parts of it, some of which have actually been preserved in the modern Russian Federation. I didn’t immediately become an anarchist after abandoning communism, I was a bit of a milquetoast centrist for a while, then a libertarian, and ultimately I started to embrace the label of “anarchist” for the same reason I embraced the label of “atheist” – I learned what the terms actually meant.

I hope I have sufficiently demystified the spooky language, and put at least some readers at ease. I doubt my ideological opponents will think any better of me as a result, in fact, I suspect that the vicious ideologues out there will probably think worse of me for trying to calm people down, instead of riling them up. What do you think? Have I succeeded in making some of these labels appear less threatening? Have I changed your mind in any other way?

Escaping Mass Psychosis

Cognitive dissonance is a bitch. Ever since a certain YouTube video appeared, the problem of mass psychosis has been discussed far more widely than ever before. For the record, I was one of the first to watch it, as it appeared in my feed mere hours after it was published. Anyway, while I had intended my next post to be either another GAG file about spooky language or some more lore about the Nine Empires, I would like to elaborate on a comment that I posted in response to Shaista Justin on LinkedIn, because there is a character limit on LinkedIn comments, and I have too much to say on the subject.

Anyone who creates a system of mass psychosis does so with malicious intent, but that doesn’t mean all who actively participate in the system also do so from a place of malice. This is especially true of religion. In the modern day, most new religions die (sometimes, along with their followers) quite quickly, and are dismissed simply as “cults.” It should be noted that, in the common vernacular, the word “cult” is far more simplistic and derogatory in its meaning than in either clinical rhetoric or historical context, but I’m not going to discuss that here. For now, just keep in mind that every religion started out as what we would call a “cult,” and Christianity is no exception.

Whenever religion has rule over law, it is a net negative for society, because it puts religious doctrine ahead of both truth and personal liberty. However, though it is a net negative, not all aspects of religion are negative. Religion provides many good things for people, otherwise it would not be so popular. Religions may be formed by individuals who have no motive other than control, but they are adopted and propagated by individuals who have benevolent intent, and who also value truth. Since the truth can stand up to scrutiny, true believers of any religion are far more likely to engage with ideological opponents than grifters. As a religion ages, it becomes more common for its adherents to be open-minded true believers, rather than grifting intellectual cowards.

Though most people think of the Roman Catholic Church as an obstacle to scientific progress, people need to remember that the oldest European universities were all founded by the Church for the purpose of educating the clergy. The curriculum was four years: medicine, mathematics, law, and rhetoric, and after completion, the student would be ordained as a priest. Priests were not only preachers, they were also advisors to nobles, and acted in many other civic capacities according to rank. A knight or baron, for instance, may have taken personal council from a mere priest, whereas a duke would take council from a bishop, and a king would take council from a cardinal. Priests may have also dabbled in naturalistic pursuits, contributing their knowledge of the natural world to the university in turn. The very first “scientists,” i.e. those who acted in such a capacity before the word “science” was even coined, were all aspiring Catholic priests at one point. So long as none of the knowledge discovered through naturalism conflicted with Catholic doctrine, there was no reason to stifle any such pursuits. The problem arose when the geocentric model of the Solar System was challenged – and we all know how that went. For the record, geocentricity is an Aristotelian idea – the actual Christian doctrine explicity describes the Earth as flat, and that the sun and moon are both inside it, though even most YECs don’t believe that.

Had the Catholic Church wished to retain complete control over European society, then it would have not been so lenient concerning the intellectual pursuits of its aspiring clergy. While the Church may have been founded for the sole purpose of controlling people’s minds, that was a thousand years before the hypothesis of the Heliocentric Solar System was first proposed, and, coincidentally, the invention of the printing press, the latter of which helped to start the Protestant Reformation. While it is true that the Church did not want common people reading the bible (nope, still not capitalising), had the Catholic Church actually qualified as a cult, the Church would have done everything in its power to stifle technological progress, rather than encourage it. Actual cults adhere rather strictly to something called the BITE model – Behaviour, Information, Thought, and Emotion control. Though the Church sought to control all of these initially, not only was that control very difficult to enforce, but over the course of a thousand years, it was gradually relinquished in favour of a less theocratic civic model. I could write an entire book on the subject of how, in its efforts to bring more people into the Christian fold, the Catholic Church had no choice but to integrate pagan traditions (Christmas being a particularly famous example), so I won’t bore you with every detail of how the Church stretched itself thin while also being undermined from within, sometimes even at the highest level.

My favourite example of an escape from mass psychosis is the collapse of the Soviet Union, not because of what I know (I know more Soviet history than even the average communist professor, incidentally), but because of what I don’t know. I could explain, in great detail, precisely the mentality that existed in Russia in 1917, and what sort of sentiments had been simmering since 1905 at least. I could also explain precisely why Stalin rose to power and was able to dispose of Trotsky, Lenin’s heir apparent, with relative ease. I could explain why Khrushchëv was such a failure, and even why the Soviet Union persisted in spite of his blunders. However, there is one major gap in my knowledge of Soviet history: what the general sentiment was in the country round the time I was born. For those of you who don’t know, whenever I meet a new friend from the former USSR, and they ask my age, I respond “I was born when the Soviet Union collapsed.” To be precise, I was born three weeks after the collapse, though I don’t know how accurate my official birth-date actually is – I tell people I was born in St. Petersburg, but for all I know, I was actually born in Leningrad. Anyway, this gap my knowledge is largely due to two things: with one exception, anyone I know who grew up in the Soviet Union defected to America in the 1980s. As for anyone I know who lives in Russia, they are, again with one exception, all younger than me. Knowing what I know about Russian culture, however, I would not be surprised if the mass psychosis had died along with Stalin himself, because unlike every other Russian leader, Stalin had a large personality cult (every politician has one, by the way, but seldom is it large enough to extend to the entire system of government). Most Russians don’t care about politics, so give them democracy, and they probably won’t bother to vote, especially if their own lives are reasonably comfortable. To over-simplify for the western observer, Russian culture is effectively “do whatever you must to survive, and if it’s illegal, just don’t talk about it.” This has seemingly always been the case – under the tsars, under the Soviets (even Stalin), and it’s still true now. What strikes me as odd is that the collapse of the USSR took the rest of the world by complete surprise, apparently. Perhaps if I can’t get an answer to the question I seek about Russia, I may have to get it…

…from China. Don’t check your calendar just yet, but China has been communist (at least in name) for about as long as Russia was. My point is that, despite the incessant and ludicrously over-reaching power plays, both domestically and internationally, China may be on the verge of collapse. After all, an animal is most dangerous when wounded, and while the CCP may be willing to sacrifice every aspect of communism except the nifty-looking symbolism (you have to admit, the hammer-and-sickle looks cool) in order to maintain political stability, how far can they go before they lose control? I don’t know what the situation is like on the inside, but if the Epoch Times and the Podcast of the Lotus Eaters are anything to go by, it would seem that the CCP itself is on the verge of collapse. The party members are certainly frightened, which is why they have been in full damage-control mode for the past year-and-a-half, between both the virus that we’re not allowed to talk about and the election that we’re not allowed to question the results of. Despite all the bravado, I suspect that the Chinese government may collapse any day now, and we’ll all soon learn precisely how that happened.

The point of all this is that mass psychosis is something that people who fall into may not be able to escape – it may be something that takes generations, particularly when the psychosis is systemic. After all, it is easier to get someone to believe a lie than to convince them they’ve been lied to. Delusions are easier to create than to destroy. The process of succumbing to and recovering from delusions is also considerably quicker with individuals than with societies, hence the longer lifespans of mainstream religions than tiny cults.

The Narcissism of Altruism

Forced altruism is false altruism, and those who would force others to be altruistic are entirely self-serving, even if they act altruistic themselves. It should come as no surprise that such hypocrisy is rife among the sociopaths who desire to control everything, because in the upside-down world of totalitarianism, the words used in propaganda typically mean the exact opposite of what they should in the context where they are used. With this in mind, I shall now explain precisely why I chose the title that I did.

It’s no secret that I despise the mainstream socio-political labels. After all, “progressives” wish to undo all of the progress made since the Civil Rights Movement, “liberals” are about as illiberal as it is possible to get, and “anti-fascists” beat people in the streets while wearing black shirts. Since I, an actual liberal (philosophically speaking; politically speaking, I’m an anarchist), thoroughly detest the Orwellian wordplay of the legacy media, I shall henceforth refer to all irrational leftists as “lolberals,” a term which I must credit Tarl Warwick with the creation of. See, since he and I are too smart to be midwits (his IQ is 132, mine is 155), we are both creative enough to invent our own linguistics and turn it against the propagandists. If you don’t like it, you might just be a propagandist – or a midwit who’s green with envy. Either way, with such a cutting introduction out of the way, I regret to inform you that the rest of this article is going to be rather dry by comparison.

The old saying goes “charity begins at home.” As it suggests, that means that someone who gives generously to charity must have a comfortable home life, and any excess material wealth can be distributed elsewhere. This certainly explains why lolberals tend to be much more charitable than conservatives, but there is more to the story. After all, why would there be such an “epidemic” of homeless and destitute American and European citizens, but the governments of these countries still have mountains of cash earmarked for foreign aid… and also be pushing for open borders? One would think that a functioning government would postpone all foreign aid until such time that domestic problems have been solved, such as when Vladimir Putin diverted an oil shipment when he learned of a home heating fuel shortage in Siberia, but alas, the governments of western nations seem to care more about the third world than their own people. However, there is a perfectly rational explanation for such irrational behaviour, and much like the root problem of authoritarianism, it is narcissism.

Most people have an in-group preference, unsurprisingly. There is one notable exception, however: white lolberals. Oddly enough, many of them come from “conservative” backgrounds. However, what I found entirely predictable, is that most of them come from abusive households. It all came together: people who would take care of total strangers at the expense of their own family do so because they hate their family, and they act like insufferable narcissists because their parents are insufferable narcissists. Remember that abuse alone does not turn a person into an abuser; Narcissistic Personality Disorder is genetic. It all makes perfect sense now, why lolberals hate the family so much, and believe, just as Karl Marx did, that it is an outdated social unit that needs to be abolished, and that the State should take the place of one’s parents. I could end this article right here, and simply refer you to the study that brings all of this nonsense together, but I have an example of an “exception that proves the rule,” as it were.

It’s no secret that I used to be a communist. It’s also no secret that I have an abusive mother. So then, why have I since done a total 180 on my socio-political belief system and abandoned Soviet communism (and Lysenkoist feminism) in favour of an anarchist form of English liberalism? Well, it’s also no secret that I wasn’t raised by my biological mother. What a relief, I didn’t inherit my personality from the abusive witch who raised me! I’m still fucked up, but I’m not a narcissist, and I never was. Mind you, my real mother is a bit stuck up herself (assuming she is who I think she is, then I’ve actually know her for my entire life, funny that), but I can’t say that she’s downright narcissistic. The thing is, I’ve matured and developed a “live and let live” attitude toward others, thus abandoning my notion that all of society’s problems would be solved if a uniform system were imposed, forcing everyone to live in a way that benefits people like me. Oh, the hubris, I know, but teen-agers are known for being cocky. The reason that so many lolberals act like teen-agers, even though some of them are in their seventies, is simply because, as genetic narcissists, they are pathologically incapable of growing up. This is not just a sarcastic dismissal, by the way, there is actual science behind that statement, so brace yourself for a bit of a lesson in tetrapod psychology.

Mirror neurons are responsible for the feeling of empathy in all tetrapods (terrestrial chordates). Other animals may have them as well, but since I’m not an expert on evolutionary neurophysiology, I couldn’t tell you precisely when such cells first appeared. Oddly enough, it was once thought that only endothermic (warm-blooded) animals had any sense of compassion, but we can go off on that tangent in the comments. Anyway, the purpose of mirror neurons is to create a mental connection between animals, reinforcing the herd mentality in the name of survival. Social animals tend to have many more mirror neurons than solitary animals for this reason, and anyone who has live on a farm can tell you that a herd can have more than one species. By the way, donkeys make better sheep-dogs than actual dogs, because they are more cost-efficient, more independent, are considerably more dangerous than most dogs, and get along with sheep much better than any dog. Incidentally, since most animals don’t know what they look like, or even how big they are, and can’t even recognise their own reflection, it is not common for animals to reject a member of the hard that looks different, as long as that individual appears healthy. While the fable of the ugly duckling has a good lesson to teach, it’s not realistic, and if you’ve ever had baby birds imprint on you, you know exactly what I mean. All of these social connections are due to the activity of mirror neurons. With respect to narcissistic personality disorder, the direct effect of the abnormal gene responsible for it is a lack of mirror neurons.

Without mirror neurons, it is impossible for an individual of any species to properly form social connections. Among most tetrapods, such an individual simply won’t be part of the herd, and will probably be the first to get eaten by a predator, thus nipping the problem in the bud, and preventing the defective genes from spreading. Among humans, the ostracisation of such individuals is practised only among the most “primitive” cultures, and even then, there are warnings against it; there is an ancient African proverb that goes “the child that is rejected by the village will burn it down to feel its warmth.” There is another reason that socially “inept” children should not immediately be dismissed as defective, and that is because the inability to form social bonds is also a sign of autism. Autistic people aren’t afflicted with a deficiency of mirror neurons, in fact, many have the opposite problem, leading them to mentally shut down from sensory overload. Incidentally, a person who is extremely sensitive to the mere existence of other people’s emotions is called an empath. On the opposite end, a person born with no mirror neurons and who simply can’t acknowledge, much less care, about the feelings of others is called a sociopath – though there is more to being a sociopath than being pathologically inconsiderate.

Children are self-centred by nature. They cannot survive on their own, and require the attention of adults in order to function. As they mature, they develop more mirror neurons and naturally become more considerate to the needs and feelings of others. However, if they are raised according to the methods prescribed by the self-esteem movement, these connections don’t develop, and they remain emotionally immature well into adulthood. Such people appear as narcissistic spoiled brats in adult bodies, but there is hope for them. The ones who never mature, on the other hand, the ones who are still pushing the childish soc-jus inanity at an age when they ought to be playing with their grandchildren (if they even have any), are the ones that are, most likely, incapable of doing so. If one is born with a genetic defect that prevents the creation of mirror neurons, then no real social bonds may ever be formed, and that person will never consider the needs and desires of others. That person will, instead, seek to exploit the needs and desires of others in order to achieve their own goals. To them, love of one’s fellows is a weakness that works in their favour, which is why such individuals habitually use the fallacy of the collective good in order to manipulate large crowds into doing their bidding. Since people tend to be irrational, the analytical person (usually autistic) who points out the plot holes in the act seems uncaring, and thus the sociopath is able to easily turn the crowd against the rational person who sees through the grift. Are you starting to see the deep, psychological root to all the socio-political problems that plague decadent societies?

None of this is new information. All I did was put the pieces together. I’m not the only one doing so at this time, I simply have a different approach. The most important piece of information was the following study:

https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/706889?journalCode=jop

This and other studies were discussed in the following two videos:

Why Do People Grow More Conservative As They Age? and The Appeal To Community

I’d like to think that the majority of people are both perceptive and rational enough to see enough of the big picture by now, but I’ve been wrong before, and I become disgusted with more people as a result. Reason must prevail, to quote Evgeniy Zamyatin, and it looks like I’m going to be at this for a while.

Collectivism and Militarism are Inseparable

Every soldier sacrifices their individual needs and desires for the benefit of the unit. This is neither good nor bad, it simply is. However, this is not how a liberal society operates. Rather than the citizen’s purpose being to live one’s life to benefit society, society operates to benefit its citizens. The reason that the military operates on the reverse principle is because it has a clear goal and purpose, whereas society at large does not. Individual organisations may be run in a similar manner to the military, if they have clarity and urgency of purpose, but for the most part, civilian organisations function for the benefit of their individual members as much as for the organisation itself.

The collectivist mindset, that is to say, the willingness to sacrifice one’s individuality for the benefit of the group, is a martial mindset. There is nothing wrong with having such a mindset, in fact it is necessary for the military to operate efficiently. However, what I thoroughly resent is the permeation of the collectivist mindset throughout liberal societies, which are supposed to preserve individual rights and freedoms. Unlike the military, society at large HAS NO GOAL that it is working towards. Individuals may have goals, organisations may have goals, but society cannot – humans don’t have a damn hive mind.

First, let me explain why I resent the collectivist mindset so much. I know who I am (sort of) and I know what I want from life (again, sort of). Like all humans, I have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I also plan to exercise those rights, not throw them away by joining an organisation that makes all of my decisions for me. Collectivists do not believe such rights even exist, instead they believe that rights are “material things you should have,” which defies the very definition of a right, and I’ll explain why in another article. Collectivists believe that you should sacrifice whatever is necessary for the benefit of society, possibly including your own life, to which I say “you know what, fine, you do you, and if you get killed, good riddance, you narcissistic busybody.”

Second, the militaristic vision that collectivists have for civil society is laughably hypocritical, considering how many collectivists, particularly socialists and progressives (which are basically the same, but hey, I like being inclusive, and self-described progressives usually hate being called “socialist”) claim to be anti-war and anti-military. The truth is, collectivists actually love the military, but not all the fun parts about it – you know, the cool toys, fun exercises, and pretty uniforms that make every young boy want to join. What collectivists love about the military is the bureaucratic organisation and the brainwashing. In fact, as modern warfare becomes smaller in scale, with soldiers being both more specialised and more versatile thanks to technology, it would seem that modern militaries are actually becoming more individualistic in terms of their approach to personnel, abandoning the model of the “soldier,” and reverting to the much older “warrior” culture in some respects. Oddly enough, this is something that self-described progressives who have an interest in the military (including the top brass in both the US and UK) seem to have the biggest problem with, rather than more important things, such as replacing the aging, outdated weapon systems that make western militaries look like a joke compared to Israel or Russia, or cutting ties with defense contractors who keep supplying the same over-priced trash, just in shiny new packaging or with the latest generation of bells and whistles (looking at YOU, General Dynamics). Look, the purpose of the military is to kill people who threaten your country, not set a cultural example by going woke. But then, since “get woke, go broke” is a thing, I guess the only way to push the woke agenda is to get a taxpayer-funded organisation to adopt it. Perhaps now you understand why I say “taxation is theft.”

Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system, I need to explain how the modern military mindset arose in the first place, and why it is permanently bound to collectivist ideology, specifically socialism. The modern military, as we know it, is largely based on the Roman legions. For a time, however, there were no Roman legions, and for a bit over half the Middle Ages, wars were fought on a much smaller scale in a manner consistent with a feudal society. While we, in the modern day, think in terms of nations when it comes to land, for the first half of the Middle Ages, no such concept existed. The law of the land was the law of whoever owned the land. Possession is nine tenths of the law, and the ability to maintain possession is the tenth. In order to protect his land, a lord would retain several men-at-arms to repel trespassers. Now, in the modern day, trespassers aren’t typically a problem for rural landowners, but in Medieval England, those trespassers might be dangerous vikings, so trespassing was taken a bit more seriously back then. Anyway, the lord’s fighting force was typically quite small, maybe as few as ten men. A wealthier lord may have many more, and that alone would grant him some authority over the lesser lords within his reach. A king had claim to all the lands within his reach, but the lords maintained their property with little interference as long as they promised to contribute their men-at-arms if the king needed to raise an army to fight off a large invasion. Feudalism is actually a good bit more complicated than this, but the bottom line is that a king did not hold absolute power, instead he relied on his vassals to carry out his will. In England, specifically, the king derived his power from the consent of the barons. The arrangement was largely the same all over Europe, at least until 1230.

In 1230, the Teutonic Order launched the Prussian Crusade with the goal of converting the Old Prussians to Christianity. After their success, the Teutonic knights settled in eastern Prussia, which is now northern Poland. They launched quite a few crusades in the Baltic region, and are probably best known for their disastrous defeat in the Battle on the Ice in 1242, during a crusade against the Republic of Novgorod (for the record, it was actually an autonomous branch of the Teutonic Order called the Livonian Order, formed in 1237 and operating in what is now Latvia). Anyway, the point is that the nation of Prussia started out as a crusader state. Unlike the crusader states in the Levant, however, this one persisted, as the others were utterly steamrolled by the Ottoman Turks in 1453. Prussia was, effectively, the first military dictatorship. The earliest Prussian nobles were all former Teutonic knights, and they ruled lands that they conquered for the church, rather than receiving those lands from any king. They were warriors first, rulers second, unlike most nobles, who were the opposite. Prussia became a duchy in 1525 and a kingdom in 1701, the whole time slowly taking over lands of the Holy Roman Empire, which accelerated under Frederick the Great, who became king in 1740. In 1805, the Holy Roman Empire was dissolved after Napoleon Bonaparte’s victory at the Battle of Austerlitz, and replaced with the Confederation of the Rhine. Outside of Austria and Switzerland, the German-speaking lands remained divided and in a state of constant reorganisation until their unification in 1871 – under Prussian leadership, of course. By the way, this was in the middle of the Franco-Prussian war. Germany, as a unified nation, was born during the middle of a war against the French.

It is important to note that Otto von Bismarck, Chancellor of Prussia, later Germany, was a champion of public welfare when he wasn’t helping the Kaiser win wars. Under his administration, the German Empire had a rather extensive welfare state, almost comparable to what is seen today in many European countries, but completely revolutionary by the standards of 1880. Plenty of other countries had been enacting labour reforms, especially when it came to coal mining. A particularly interesting tale is that of Mines and Collieries Act of 1842 in England, which barred women and children under 13 from working underground – not just because of safety concerns, but also because of Victorian prudishness. Deep in the mine shafts, it was so hot that hurriers – a mining occupation made obsolete by the introduction of pit ponies – tended to work topless, and sometimes completely naked, even the women. Anyway, the point of this little tangent has to do with the rise of socialism, and why such an idea took hold in some places, not others. In societies that are already highly regimented, those in which people simply do as they are told, problems do not get solved except by those whose job it is to solve problems, and this requires a very high authority to identify a problem and decree that it must be solved. In a more liberal society, any individual can take the initiative to solve problems that they may have no obligation to do anything about, just as Anthony Ashley Cooper did with the conditions in British coal mines. In terms of liberal initiative, at that time, it was highest in the United States, which is why labour unions formed to protect the rights of workers, and Britain was not far behind. Germany, however, had the least amount of such initiative, and so it took a blathering busybody named Karl Marx to write down what he thought all of society needed to be like in order to solve the plight of the proletariat. Perhaps Bismarck took some cues from Marx when he created the prototypical German welfare state, perhaps not, but in either case, such reforms were the reason that no “workers’ revolution” took place. Likewise, the success of labour unions and individual activists in the UK and the US are probably also significant contributing factors regarding why no socialist revolution has taken place in these countries.

If all this serious history is making your eyes glaze over, don’t worry, I’ve made my point. By now, the connection between militarism and socialism should be evident. No doubt there will be people who insist that there doesn’t need to be a war in order to get people to join together and work toward a common goal, and that’s true, to an extent. The issue I take is the sickening hubris of the activists who insist that everyone must drop what they’re doing and work toward their goal, else they’re part of the problem, perhaps even “working with the enemy.” These people are a bunch of moral busybodies, and we don’t need them – they need us, whether they like it or not, so just ignore them, and don’t let the constant brow-beating get to you. Remember, the purpose of collectivism is to take advantage of strength in numbers to wage war – and when there is no-one left to fight outside of the collective, the members of that collective will inevitably turn their guns on each other. There is a reason that the left eats itself, and socialist countries always purge themselves. Oh, sure, “this time will be different,” but it’s a lie, and people need to stop falling for it.

The Fallacy of the Collective Good

Those who can get you to believe in absurdities can get you to commit atrocities, and every atrocity has been committed in the name of the greater good, for the greater good is nothing more than the alibi of tyrants. That sentence combines three great quotes regarding the fallacy of the greater good, and that is where the argument should end. However, you know me, I don’t write short articles, and now that I’ve made my point, I shall explain my reasoning, provide some examples, and hopefully put this fallacious argument to bed once and for all.

The fallacy of the collective good is based around the phrase “the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” That premise, in and of itself, is fairly innocuous and damn near impossible to argue against, but while it may hold water in a purely academic setting, it quickly crumbles when you start throwing historical examples at it. One particularly absurd example that I’ve come across is a society that is 90% vegans and 10% cannibals. If the needs of the few are respected, then the cannibals would be allowed to eat the vegans, whereas if the needs of the many take precedent, then no-one gets eaten. That example, of course, is purely hypothetical and ludicrously simplistic. Real-world examples of this mentality overwhelming work against the needs of the many, because “the needs of the proletariat outweigh the needs of the bourgeoisie,” and “the needs of the Aryan outweigh the needs of the Jew.” With these examples in mind, all of a sudden, the vegans and cannibals example suddenly seems far less straightforward. After all, if the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, then the vegans would be telling the cannibals what they can and cannot eat. Again, this seems innocuous, but what about a less extreme example: let’s exchange “cannibals” for “meat-eaters.” If the vegans are allowed to tell everyone in the society what they can and cannot eat, then the meat-eaters will again be oppressed, and you can’t make the excuse that they are being oppressed “for the collective good,” unless you are a vegan yourself (most vegan believe that it should be illegal to eat animals). As you alter the example, using less and less extreme positions than “vegan” and “cannibal,” then the clear distinction of oppressor and oppressed becomes blurred. Vegans, for example, will argue that any consumption of animal products is a violation of the animal’s rights, and their position is so extreme that they can use their ideology to justify controlling the behaviour of people who do not believe as they do. The welfare of the downtrodden is nothing more than a shield that narcissistic busybodies hide behind while they morally brow-beat people that don’t want to go along with their agenda.

With the absurd example out of the way, let’s look at a more nuanced example – once which is partially inspired by everyone’s favourite BreadTuber, Vaush. Suppose there are ten people on a deserted island, but there is only enough food for nine of them. Now then, we already have a problem: the people on the island aren’t going to know that there is only enough food for nine people until they actually start gathering it. For the sake of this argument, let’s assume that all food automatically replenishes every single night, so this little scenario can go on indefinitely. There is another problem regarding food collection, and that has to do with the mentality of the person posing this little hypothetical situation, be they collectivist or individualist, and this will affect the actions of the hypothetical people involved. The collectivist will most likely insist that all ten people make a camp, gather food, bring it back, and distribute it evenly. The individualist will most likely insist that every person eat the food that they are able to gather on their own. Already, there is an irreconcilable difference between individualist and collectivist thinking – the individualist will probably assert that anyone too lazy to gather food shouldn’t get any, whereas the collectivist will assert that if people eat only the food they collect, then one or two people might collect all the food, and everyone else will starve. Both positions are inaccurate, because if people are stranded on a deserted island, realistically speaking, one of them may be injured and thus unable to collect food. Most humans act toward each other with sufficient good will that the injured party probably won’t starve immediately. Nonetheless, if the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, it would actually justify letting one person starve so that the others have enough food. Therefore, the collectivist mindset actually encourages looking for a difference, some trait that only one person has, that the other nine people can point to and justify letting them starve to death.

There is a second part to this deserted island example, and this one is more closely in line with Vaush’s depraved thinking. Suppose, of the ten people, there are nine men and one woman. I think you know where I’m going with this, so you may wish to skip to the next paragraph. Since people have certain “needs,” suppose, for the sake of argument, that all of the men find the woman attractive. If the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, then that would justify all nine men having sex with the woman, with or without her consent, in order to satisfy their needs. It is possible to take this one step further, because perhaps two of the men are gay, and find one of the straight men attractive. If the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, that would justify allowing the two gay men to rape the straight man, in order to satisfy their needs. There are many more variations of this line of thinking, and in every single case, the needs of the many can be used to justify over-riding the consent of any individual.

Most collectivists will probably insist that my examples thus far are all strawmen. Perhaps, but in order to refute my arguments, it is necessary to invoke individual rights. Collectivists will attempt to avoid such an invocation for as long as possible, but unless they resort to dishonesty or intellectual cowardice, the Socratic method can be used to eventually tease it out. If one does not believe in individual rights, than the collective good may be used to justify doing any terrible thing to any person, if that person’s words or actions are not in line with the prevailing groupthink. If one person speaks out against government propaganda, then silencing that person is justified in the name of the public good, usually something banal, such that even the most innocuous rebuke may be associated with malice. Any action taken against an individual may also be taken against a minority, if the minority group can be smeared as a threat to the public good. Public health and safety are the cudgels most frequently used to brow-beat those who speak out against the wall of propaganda. These are purely emotional, subjectively moralistic arguments that can be used to justify objectively immoral treatment of those who refuse to conform with despotic government diktats, and because the masses are so irrational, they fall for it and turn against rational individuals. Thus, for the sake of their own preservation, people who know better eventually stop speaking out, allowing the mass psychosis to spread.

The fallacious reasoning doesn’t end there, incidentally. Every society that prioritises the collective good over individual rights is inherently murderous, if not outright genocidal, and it should come as no surprise, given than the collectivist mindset is the military mindset, and I will explain why in my next editorial.

The Great Reset is Anything But

When I started the GAG files, I initially intended to write in a chronological order, detailling the slow, unrelenting creep of authoritarianism throughout all of human history. I may still do that at some point, perhaps as a stand-alone book under an obscure pen-name (“Oleksander Vinogradov,” perhaps, or some other deliberate red herring), but for now, I think it far better, for a number of reasons, to simply make this particular section of my blog a stream of consciousness, with my increasingly sarcastic rhetoric.

The most famous line regarding the Great Reset, by far, is “you will own nothing, and you will be happy; everything you want will be rented.” Contrary to a common criticism of younger generations, people are not steadily becoming more materialistic, in many ways people are becoming less materialistic, but not in the way you might think. My generation, the dreaded millennials, are every bit as materialistic as previous generations, but most of us value non-tangible material items, rather than tangible ones. If that confuses you, then allow me to explain in terms of my favourite hobby: wargaming. Wargaming is a far older hobby than most people realise, in fact, I would personally argue that chess is the original tabletop wargame, and it is certainly the oldest one that is still regularly played. Chess is very abstract, and quite far removed from actual warfare in terms of how it functions. Wargames have gotten much more realistic, and by extension, much more complex, in the centuries since. In the last decade of the 20th century, wargaming finally became computerised, and while early games were nothing more than digital versions of turn-based tabletop games, computers allowed for the creation of real-time virtual warfare, including my personal favourite gaming genre, real-time strategy, or RTS. Now then, the reason I bring this up is simply because of something odd I found among players of the popular online game World of Tanks. Many players like to own tangible models of their favourite tanks, and I know this because I supply them. This is where the concept of materialism, tangiblity, and ownership overlap, but not completely. The point is that, if most of your material possessions are non-tangible, rather than tangible, you don’t need as much space to store them. If a house is “just a place for your stuff,” as George Carlin once said, then you need a large house in order to store a vast library of books, boxes full of board games, tables with miniature dioramas, and walls decorated with maps and paintings. All of the items I just listed can exist in digital (i.e. non-tangible) format, and if you own purely digital books, games, dioramas, and images, then you don’t need a large house, and probably wouldn’t want one.

The most prized material possessions that a person can own are typically status symbols. Among older generations, that status symbol is a house, a car, or a purse – not kidding, purses are status symbols, mainly because they are much more recognisable than items of jewellery. Among millennials, however, the primary status symbol is not tangible, but digital. The number of FaceBook friends, Twitter followers, or YouTube subscribers, is the main mark of status, and people will go to great lengths to portray a fake lifestyle in order to get what they want from social media, because social media tends to favour idle nonsense and vain talk, for some reason. The actual status symbols, incidentally, aren’t just the numbers, but the little virtual badges that come with them – the “verified” check mark, the gold status, etc. Hive, as much as I like the platform, is the worst when it comes to badges, two of which reward users for posting every single day, thus encouraging quantity over quality. Returning to the subject of electronic games, lots of my age-mates play MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role-playing games), most of which allow a great degree of character customisation, thus any player can create a character that is truly their “own.” The character isn’t the player’s de jure property, of course, and there are very limited options for creating a tangible version of the character. Between levelling up a character and collecting in-game items, people who put a lot of time into their game characters have a lot to show for it, and can become very attached to them as a result, so getting hacked and losing one’s game account can feel like a great loss. No tangible item has been lost, and in most cases, nothing of monetary value was lost, yet it is still a material loss. Digital property is still property, after all, and there is a massive debate still going on about how it should be treated in the legal sense. Nonetheless, I shall reiterate: a digital item is as much a material possession as a tangible item.

Corporations have been undermining the concept of personal property for the entire 21st century, so far. Software companies are the worst, as they have, in almost perfect lockstep, moved away from allowing consumers to “own” copies of their software, and instead switched to subscription services, in which the software is perpetually rented. This is a shady (more like “shitty”) business practise that allows companies to continually siphon money from their customers on a single product, rather than having to regularly introduce new products in order to get repeat customers (though they still do that, too). Since it is such a successful business practise, companies that produce tangible products are looking to do the exact same thing, and some already do. If you have a gas-powered stove, for instance, you might not own the gas tank, and instead have to rent it from the gas company, perpetually paying them for its use, regardless of how much gas you actually use. It isn’t much of a stretch to see how this might work with other tangible items. This, combined with the steadily decreasing quality of physical products, only serves to contribute to our “throw-away” society, which is something that people have been complaining about for decades. The Great Reset is not a reset at all, just the logical conclusion of the current trend – corporations own everything, you rent everything, including your house, from them, you must work for them in order to have the money to access to the things that you want, and if you don’t work for them, you can’t do or have anything. This sounds an awful lot like communism, and it seems to me that the only gripe that communists have with this arrangement is that corporations own everything, rather than the public or the government. In other words, the Great Reset is just more of the “privatise the gains, socialise the losses” trend that critics of private prisons and defense contractors have been pointing out for years now.

So then, if the Great Reset is just more of the same, how did it get its name? The answer is simple: linguistic propaganda. I opened my previous post by refuting several examples of linguistic propaganda, mainly to scare off anyone stupid enough to defend them. You can’t argue with someone who uses linguistic propaganda, because they aren’t just wrong, they are lying. They know that what they are saying is wrong, but they either don’t care, or they can’t help themselves. Klaus Schwab, for instance, can’t help himself. Schwab seems to be so hopelessly in love with socialism (he is German, after all, and socialism is a German invention), but he knows enough about economics to understand precisely why socialism can’t work. The same can be said of Lenin, Mussolini, and Hitler. All of them were socialists who had broad enough understandings of human nature (at least compared to Marx, who didn’t understand people at all), that they tweaked the original doctrine to fit their respective societies. Thus, Communism (i.e. Soviet communism), Fascism, and Nazism can all be said to be variations of “post-Marxist socialism.” “Stakeholder capitalism,” as Schwab deceptively calls his ideal economic system, is another form of post-Marxist socialism, a “second generation” of post-Marxist socialism, if you will, or a “kinder, gentler fascism,” as I would prefer to say, since the Germans are still totalitarian asshats, but no longer seem to have the stomach for mass murder.

Don’t Debate Ideologues

Simply mock them, because that’s what they will do to you, whether you are aware of it or not. This is going to be an unusual post, even compared to my other editorials. I want to start off by mentioning that I fully intend to translate my previous article (which is not an editorial), but I need to take a break from translation to get something off my chest.

The Patriot Act wasn’t patriotic

The Affordable Care Act wasn’t affordable

Black Lives Matter doesn’t care about black lives

Antifa is not opposed to fascism

Fascism is not right-wing

Liberalism is not left-wing

Critical Race Theory is not anti-racist

Money is not speech

Corporations are not people

And the bible is not the word of god

There, now that I’ve (hopefully) scared off all the ideologues who are so deeply entrenched in their false dichotomies, you and I can have a serious discussion (in other words, feel free to leave a comment or write an entire article in response). I have mentioned the ideological method in passing several times already, though I never explained in detail what it is. I have mentioned that it is based on logical fallacies, cherry-picking especially, but I haven’t gone any further than that. I currently have a draft saved in which I explain it in greater detail, and I fully intend to publish it at some point, but the bottom line is that if you know all the nasty little tricks that narcissists use to get their way, then you already have an intimate knowledge of the ideological method at work. Today, I am going to tell you how to deal with these people.

First of all, it should be stated that if you engage in a serious intellectual debate with anyone, you automatically concede that their position may have merit. Scientists engage in serious intellectual debate all them time. Politicians do not. Political debates are nothing more than a debased form of musical theatre, and this is coming from someone who doesn’t even like musicals (I prefer ballet and opera, old-fashioned snob that I am). Ideologues do not engage in intellectual debates, they engage in political debates disguised as intellectual debates. If you choose to debate an ideologue, and you should not (at least not in a live setting), you must first be aware that you will not be having an intellectual debate, you will be having a pseudo-intellectual political debate. Vicious ideologues are intellectually dishonest so that they can lure unsuspecting opponents into a trap. Don’t fall for it. Likewise, should you ever challenge an ideologue to a debate and you open with a variation of the line “show me the evidence,” be prepared to be greeted with a cloud of dust as that person flees into the distance. Behind all the bravado is an intellectual coward. Ideologues are not prepared to deal with people who are confident and quick-witted, they are prepared to deal with people who are sheepish and naïve. Knowledge and expertise are irrelevant in a political debate; confidence and wit are everything.

Second, political debates, ideological debates very much included, are debates about what should be, not about what is. Regardless of whether the topic is nominally about what path we should take in the future or not, the ideologue will always invoke some form of moralism. Young-Earth creationists do this as much as communists, and I will continue to compare those two groups specifically, because I know how much they HATE being tarred with the same brush, despite absolutely deserving it. While creationists tend to focus on the past, and are attempting to debunk a scientific theory about something that has been happening for several billion years, they do so on purely moral grounds, arguing that modern society is corrupt because of the Theory of Evolution. Incidentally, both creationists and communists have a skewed, if not outright inaccurate, picture of human history, 20th century history in particular.

Third, many people innocently believe that people who spout inane nonsense on the internet are simply misinformed, and will attempt to correct the nonsense in a matter-of-fact manner. Before you issue a correction, however, it behooves you to look through the person’s comment history, where possible (neither BitChute nor WordPress allow you to do this, the way that LinkedIn and Hive do, as well as Twitter, to a lesser extent), to find out what sort of person you are dealing with. There are a lot of people who are genuinely misinformed, and while no-one likes to be wrong, such an individual will likely respond with something like “really?” and that will be that. Should the person be an ideologue (or a troll), expect a litany of insults to follow. The intellectual level of such insults will vary by platform, with Twitter being the most infantile, and LinkedIn, unfortunately, not far behind. If you find yourself unable to determine what sort of person you are dealing with in a reasonably short amount of time, then you can bait them into telling you: ideologues are pedants, and will jump at any chance to correct one of your mistakes in order to satisfy their need to feel intellectually superior; a common but slight grammatical mistake ought to do the trick, as many of them cannot resist the urge to police the language of others.

Fourth, it is important to remember that ideologues have a certain image that they want to project, an illusion of virtue, that is, in order to present themselves as morally superior to their ideological opponents. The smear merchant cries out in pain as he defames you. The ideologue values purity, and sometimes will feign purity of more than just ideology. What I mean by purity of ideology, incidentally, is that many will claim to have never read (and most really haven’t) the doctrine of an ideology that they find abhorrent, and that they have always believed as they do now. Heresy is unforgivable to these people, even if it is in the past. “The past and future have been erased, there is only an endless present in which the party is always right,” is a line right out of 1984. The obsession with purity, however, does not stop there. Many of them will feign innocence of things that they ought know about, such as the meanings of common colloquialisms that are frequently used in a derogatory manner (“snake oil salesman” is a perfect example). Many of them will claim, falsely or otherwise, that they have never partaken of alcohol, tobacco, premarital sex, or pornography. If they claim the last one specifically, then I am immediately curious how that person would respond if it is suggested that they secretly have a stash of yaoi or futanari hentai – and if you don’t already know what those are, do not type either of those terms into your favourite search engine if you value your sanity.

Fifth, debunking a flawed ideology doesn’t require debating anyone, much less does it require actually winning said debate. The proper way to debunk an ideology is careful cross-examination, and every true ideologue knows this (most midwits don’t, however, which is why they habitually suffer the sort of mental pitfalls that their intellectual masters know to avoid). Should you ever get far enough in a debate with an ideologue to be able to critically examine their claims, this is where the ideologue will resort to goalpost-shifting. Ideologues do not want their ideas scrutinised, because internal inconsistencies are bound to be exposed. At this point, double standards may be invoked. If the entire premise of the ideology is so weak that no part of it stands up to empirical scrutiny, then the ideologue may reveal that they don’t believe in empiricism, but standpoint “theory” or some other philosophy, in which case the argument will become philosophical. Few ideological debates ever get this far, but if the subject is changed enough times, then eventually, the ideologue will find an area that their opponent is weak in, and finally “win” the debate. The point is that unless your opponent is willing to argue philosophy, most ideologies can be debunked simply by pointing out logical fallacies. You don’t need to know too much science to be able to debunk young-Earth creationism, and you don’t need to know too much economics in order to debunk Marxism – in both cases, the ability to point out logical fallacies will be enough to demonstrate that both ideologies are so deeply flawed that nothing worthwhile can be salvaged from either of them.

There you have it, five things to keep in mind if you ever meet an ideologue. I decided to post this in The GAG Files, because ideologues are responsible for keeping the grift going. As long as people take them seriously, they are a threat. Once people see them for the self-serving grifters that they are, they lose all their power.