Tuesday, October 22, 2013

"Skank! Skank! Skank! Skank-Ass Skank!"

"Most people who complain about the backward, violent, vengeful side of the Culture of Honor, as contrasted with the progressive, peaceful, neutral-third-party side of the Culture of Law, overlook honor's twin -- hospitality. Honor means, you f*ck me, I f*ck you ten times harder back. But hospitality means, you host me, I'll host you ten times as lavishly next time around. The Culture of Honor is therefore really a Culture of Reciprocity, only one-half of which is "an eye for an eye." Guided by a framework of hospitality, pastoralist peoples can expel an immigrant group for having worn out its welcome." - Dusk in Autumn



There are two things I've learned from the Greeks. One is that the phrase in Declaration of Independence, "the pursuit of happiness," is a mistranslation of the Greek, eudaimonia, which means "well-being/flourishing." It's achieved by arete, or excellence.

The second thing I learned is the concept of Hubris. Hubris originally meant to humiliate someone in public (often with a sexual connotation to it) and the Greeks considered it so obscene they banned it from the theater.

Later it evolved to mean a kind of grandiosity (these days called narcissism) and it still meant to humiliate people. Hubris is followed by Nemesis, which means to exact revenge.

Revenge is the attempt to erase shame/humiliation and replace it with pride. Hence, we get that scene from Breaking Bad where the woman's "boyfriend" says such bad things about her that she kills him to restore her self-image.

My experience has been that I don't see a lot of people being excellent at something and so achieving flourishing/well-being, but I see an awful lot of Hubris/narcissism leading to people seeking to restore their pride through revenge. And it just astonishes me the number of people I see who can't handle the slightest bit of authority without it going to their heads and then attempting to humiliate people.

And they don't even know they're doing. And they are just astonished when people get back at them.

Example: nearly every school shooter was bullied and so got revenge. And these dumbass cops shooting innocent dogs and crashing into people's houses and murdering them are going to be shocked when it comes back on them. Jason Dorner, for example, is a warning shot across the bow.

Dorner may been been a monster, as were the school shooters, but I am again going to point out that the word "monster" means a demonstration and a warning.

This is why I pay attention to monsters so I can determine what they are protesting. Because if you don't and instead do the foolish and naive thing and just dismiss them as "evil" you are completely missing the lesson.

When people see their lives as about doing the best they can, their lives, and society, will improve. When they don't see anything wrong with humiliating people, their lives, and society will go backwards, and sometimes collapse.

I'd say that people who are busy doing their best don't want to humiliate people instead want to help them do their best. For example, isn't that what a teacher is ultimately supposed to be about?

Because the lesson is: if you continually humiliate people they are going to turn on you and do to you what was done to them. Perhaps, ultimately, they will do worse to their tormentors that was was done to them.

Such as, in one form or another, smashing their heads flat with an ATM machine.

By the way, people will sometimes give up their lives to get revenge.


"Eventually Nemesis overtakes Hubris, and the results aren’t pretty." - Justin Raimondo

3 comments:

Quartermain said...

Here is the latest on the recent school shooting:

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/10/23/21097431-anti-bullying-video-may-have-played-a-role-in-fatal-nevada-school-shooting-student?lite

Bob Wallace said...

The best way to deal with school bullies is to beat them up. Then they might even become your friend after.

Herb Nowell said...

My experience has been that I don't see a lot of people being excellent at something and so achieving flourishing/well-being

What is even more distressing is that much of that flourishing is not in the achieving excellence but striving to achieve it. People have a great source of well being that can be brought about just by the expenditure of a small amount of effort.

Consider someone learning a new skill from computer programming to auto mechanics to the guitar. The new programmer who writes a program to print out his calendar, the new mechanic who changes his oil for the first time, and the new guitar player who s learns his first chord change all experience well being from that simple task. Anyone who has learned anything has experienced that achievement.

Yes, the programmer who writes a a budget program such as YNAB, the mechanic who can rebuild a transmission, and the guitarist who can plan his favorite solo have more well being. In turn they are not as well as the programmer who rolls his own OS, the mechanic who restores a vintage car, or the guitar player who creates his own famous (even if just on the local bar circuit) solo.

However, those are all differences of degree, not kind.

Instead, today, we intentionally rob people of that well-being. Participation trophies and no score sports are cruelty incarnate regardless of what their proponents claim. Welfare that allowed you to live as a king is crueler to the soul than any menial job in a culture where work is respected.

Is it any surprise a generation intentionally robbed of the key thing that leads to human well-being, the opportunity to strive to achieve, is so cruel.

They only reflect what was done to them as children.