Friday, March 30, 2012

White Men as Modern Scapegoats

I look at the Gospels not so much as religion but as good practical wisdom about people, their motivations, and their behavior.

There are at least four archetypes in the Gospels that applied not only then but also today. They are the State, the Mob, the Leaders, and the Scapegoat/Human Sacrifice. The leaders incite the mob into a frenzy, and both then call for the scapegoat/human to be sacrificed through the power of the state.

The Gospels tell us that the leaders of Jesus' time saw him as a threat, one whom they erroneously thought would bring the Romans to destroy their nation. They incited and united the mob against him by claiming he was a danger. He was then turned into a scapegoat and sacrificed by using the power of the Roman state — and the mob howled for his death.

Those four archetypes exist today, and unfortunately White men are the current scapegoats.

Notice I did not write “White people.” It’s White men, because there is a wedge being driven in-between White men and White women, and has been since the ‘60s. Not so long ago I talked to a woman, in her late 40s, who told me men were responsible for almost all the trouble in the world. She was, not at all surprisingly, unmarried and childless.

Where did she get this idea? From being inundated with it from the media all her life? Ya think that might have something to do with it?

There is also a wedge driven between blacks and Whites, and “Hispanics” (whatever they are) and Whites. The target is White men, and everyone who is honest knows this.

Why is he the target? I think a lot of it is envy, and again I turn to the Bible for the explanation.

I consider a fair amount of the Bible to be myth, and by myth I do not mean “untrue,” but instead universally true, applicable to everyone, through the telling of fictional stories, and through the use of metaphor, simile and allegory.

Let’s take the myth of the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve get kicked out for breaking the rules, and when they’re caught, Adam blames Eve, and Eve blames the serpent — which is a symbol of envy. Adam is telling Eve, “It’s your fault,” and Eve responds, “No, it’s the serpent’s fault.” In other words, Adam uses Eve as a scapegoat, and Eve uses the serpent.

And out the door they go, and human evil comes into the world.

There we have the explanation, and I believe it’s a true one. Almost all — probably not all, though — scapegoating is caused by envy. And people who are envious want to bring down those they envy — even if they destroy themselves in the process.

Since Whites have been so powerful and successful throughout history — and I’ll be the first to admit they has done a lot of wrong things (as have all races and ethnic groups), they of course will be the target of the less successful, and therefore envious.

If there is one emotion that has caused more trouble in history than any other one, I’d pick envy. Whoever wrote the story of the Garden of Eden apparently felt the same way. And Helmut Schoeck, who wrote a famous book, simply titled. Envy, thought so, too.

Where you have envy you have resentment and hate and the desire for revenge, and when you have all of them, you have revolutionaries who wish to destroy. As Eugene Ionesco wrote about the envious, hate-filled, wannabe-world-destroyer Karl Marx: “[He] must have suffered a secret wound to his pride, as did all those who want revolutions. It is this secret wound he hides, consciously or not.”

That “secret wound” was his envy — in his case of aristocrats, who were the only people he respected. And envy is probably the hardest emotion for anyone to admit. Marx never admitted it, or any of his immensely destructive followers.

There is another Biblical myth that is relevant — that of Cain and Abel, the first recorded murder. Cain slays Abel out of jealousy and envy, because Abel had something Cain wanted — for God to accept his offering. It was a murder born out of rivalry and vengeance.

The main weapons — propaganda — the envious use to bring down the envied are the attempts to instill guilt and shame. Tellingly, child researchers believe children feel shame before guilt, which is also illustrated in the story of the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve don’t feel guilty about being naked; they feel ashamed.

The fact that shame becomes before guilt makes it a more primitive, powerful and more effective weapon. Saul Alinsky (perhaps unwittingly) noticed this is his Rules for Radicals, when he wrote the first weapon to use is ridicule.

Adam and Eve don’t feel shame until they become self-conscious. That’s important too, because these attempts to instill shame and guilt will not be successful until the scapegoat incorporates them into his self and becomes self-conscious about them.

If these attempts to instill shame and guilt work, the scapegoat will in fact participate in his own destruction, and even go so far as to pass laws against himself. In other words, he’ll commit cultural suicide.

Whites throughout history are supposed to have been the perpetual victimizer of the innocent (as the resentful, envious and vengeance-minded Susan Sontag so infamously claimed, “The White race is the cancer of human history”). Now White men have become the victims, but they still clamed to be the victimizers.

Whenever you have scapegoating, the scapegoat has to be determined to be not only guilty, but evil. Then he has to be destroyed or expelled.

White men have now become the victims, but that fact is denied — people’s eyes are averted from the truth. Even today, I still run across the terms “White privilege” and even “patriarchy,” neither of which I have ever seen.

What is happening these days is the belief in group guilt, a thing which does not exist. So now we have an entire innocent group considered to be guilty and evil, and scapegoated. And the scapegoat, I repeat, has to be destroyed or expelled.

I believe the whole sequence of this scapegoating starts with belief in a Golden Age in the far past. If it never existed, then create one. Call it Atlzan, or Afrocentrism, or Ice People and Sun People. What George Orwell wrote is true: he who controls the present, controls the past. And whoever controls the present, controls the future.

Claim this Golden Age no longer exists, not through any fault of your own, but because of someone evil, usually engaged in a conspiracy. These evil people become the scapegoat that must be eliminated.

An example of this belief in a (mostly nonexistent) Golden Age are Arab Muslims who blame every one of their problems on Israel, and who believe if it is destroyed, their Golden Age will magically return. How? Somehow.

The French philosopher and theologian Rene Girard, author of Violence and the Sacred and Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World, writes there are two functions to the scapegoat: to unite society, and renew it through the destruction of the scapegoat. By focusing on White men as the scapegoat, aggrieved minorities are united in blaming their problems on them.

Girard’s believes societies, especially in their beginnings, were subject to plagues of rivalry and vengeance (the introduction of murder into the world by Cain and Abel). In fact, he considered these perpetually escalating cycles of vengeance, retaliation and murder to be the original cultural disease. Original Sin, if you will.

Societies always found a way to treat this disease — the use of a scapegoat. At some time, sometimes spontaneously and always irrationally, mob violence erupts against some person or group. They are accused of the worst crimes imaginable, crimes that by their enormity have caused the terrible plight the community now experiences. They are then, in one way or another, lynched.

Girard noticed that in myths there is always a “founding murder” on which societies are based. As an example, the killing of Jesus was the founding murder of Christianity. The difference with this murder, Girard writes, is that it was the first time in history the murder was told from the point of view of the scapegoat.

As such, Girard believes Christianity finally broke the function of the scapegoat (and also introduced repentance and atonement). Unfortunately, since American society these days is more pagan than Christian (no matter what people claim) the scapegoating mechanism is back in place — and White men are now supposed to be the founding murder for societies based on the non-existent Golden Ages, ones created by envious, revenge-minded anti-American “intellectuals.”

Those who are lusting for the destruction of White men and their culture are convinced they are innocent and oppressed, so there will be no repentance and atonement. In a nutshell, they have no conscience.

You’d think the tens of millions of illegal aliens the United States has allowed in, in their search for a better life, would be grateful. Unfortunately, mobs (in this case “ethnic tribes” might be a more accurate word) always respond with envy and resentment and never gratitude. They always believe they are entitled to handouts from their “oppressors.”

Girard identified the founding principle of societies as “Satan,” since that term mirrors Jesus’ description of “the Prince of this world,” who was motivated by envy and hubris and was “a liar and a murderer from the first.” (Martin Luther, in a similar vein, referred to the world as “the Devil’s Inn.”)

By sacrificing his life to expose and then overthrow this kingdom built on lies, envy, hubris and violence, Girard believed Jesus introduced the world to a new world built on repentance and atonement for sins (actually hamartia — literally “missing the mark”) instead of the catharsis of scapegoating, and love of God and neighbor instead of war. It’s not working all that well today.

Identifying a scapegoat allows envious groups to unite, these days through the creation of a false, idealized history, then after blaming all of their ills on the scapegoat they try to get him to disarm himself through the use of shame and guilt, and then after his expulsion or destruction through the use of political power, they believe once they are the majority their Golden Ages will return.

The only way the scapegoat can be successfully attacked is through political power, that is, the State. This means passing laws that give special rights to anyone, or especially any group, is the worst possible thing that can be done. It is, again, cultural suicide.

All propaganda is ultimately based on scapegoating, on splitting things into a narcissistic “all good” and “all bad.” The all-good is idealized (the non-existent Golden Ages) while the all-bad is devalued as evil, and determined to be the cause of all problems.

Girard, however, considers propaganda to be a parody of scapegoating, because, as he claims, “There is no such thing as conscious scapegoating,” and those who use propaganda are conscious of what they are doing.

When people are aware they are the objects of the envy, hate, resentment and revenge of the envious, when they are aware of what’s being done to them, that is the first step to becoming immune to the propaganda, and refusing to feel guilt and shame.

To the ancient Greeks Dionysius was the Mob (I am reminded of the Biblical scene in which the demons say “My name is Legion [sometimes translated as “Mob”] for there are many of us”). And the followers of Dionysius, in their riots, murdered, dismembered, and sometimes devoured their scapegoats. That is a warning for today.

Mobs don’t always necessarily act on their own, spontaneously. They usually have leaders, to excite them, to justify their beliefs and actions. This means those aggrieved minorities attacking White men and their culture have intellectuals who are leading the mobs. Those intellectual leaders are the ones who are truly the enemy.

Mass Man — the mob — has no intelligence and is incapable of reason. This herd, which is motivated by the most primitive of feelings, can be easily manipulated, and is in fact little more than sheep led by wolves.

Today these enemies are in the government, the media, the universities, and business. They are prime examples of the old saying that cultures usually don’t collapse from attacks from without, but from within.

What will happen if these envious minorities ever gain enough political power? That result is foretold by an old German proverb: “No sword cuts more brutally than a peasant who becomes a lord.”

As Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn wrote in Leftism Revisited, “In the last two hundred years, the exploitation of envy — its mobilization among the masses — coupled with the denigration of individuals, but more frequently of classes, races, nations, or religious communities, has been the key to political success.”

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Faux Christians as Worshippers of Dionysius

Poor Nietzsche. Half genius, half insane — and after his untreated syphilis advanced far enough, totally insane.

The trigger for his breakdown was when he saw a horse being beaten. He threw his arms around it, sobbing. He never recovered, and ended his days in an insane asylum.

For all of his attempts to portray himself as a bad boy, Nietzsche (a pencil-necked mouse of a man whose one true love, Lou Salome, refused to sleep with him even once), was in real life anything but. For one thing, he was far too sensitive for his own good, even though he tried to pretend he wasn't sensitive at all. As hard as he tried to not to, he identified with victims, and that's why the horse being beaten broke him.

In one of his writings, "Dionysius vs. the Crucified," Nietzsche wrote about two totally different religions — one based on taking the point of view of the victimizer, and the other that takes the point of view of the victim.

The first religion he correctly identified as pagan, and it has nothing to do with the silly "kinder, gentler" faux-paganism that those repulsed by what Christianity has become are today trying to create (or in their minds, recreate).

The second religion Nietzsche identified as Christian. Although an atheist, he was in some ways more Christian than those who today profess to be. He could at least identify with those victimized, something today, in my opinion, many Christians cannot do.

The pagan god Dionysius, Nietzsche pointed out, was not the god of drinking and partying and having a good time. He was the god of drunken rioting, destruction, and at times tearing people to shreds. And although it sounds counter-intuitive, he was also a fertility god.

We've all seen Dionysius. Every time you see a mob of people rioting and destroying things, and breaking into businesses and carrying off the merchandise and hitting innocent people in the head with bricks, the way Reginald Denny was on the receiving of one, that's Dionysius at his worst.

There are many different myths about Dionysius — apparently each Greek town had its own version — but all of them employed the same concept: a god who is slain — in fact dismembered — and then restored to life. That's one of the reasons he was a fertility god — he died and then was reborn, just as the crops were every year.

Some of the ancient Greeks did engage in drunken destructive festivals, which brought the disapproval of the authorities, who feared revolution. A government afraid of revolution? We can use the Dionysian slaughter of the French Revolution as an example of that fear (if you want to understand ancient myths, look for the modern equivalent).

These drunken destructive orgiastic rites were finally tamed by being turned into plays, such as the ones about Oedipus and Agamemnon. In the original communal festivals, people, after their rioting, felt "cleansed" —then later, after the plays took the festivals' place, the same catharsis sent them home rid of what Aristotle famously called "pity and fear."

One of the most ominous things about these festivals is there was always a scapegoat, one onto which the sins and frustrations of the community were projected. Often they were killed. Later, in the theater, the characters were the scapegoats, only this time they were fictional and died imaginary deaths.

Scapegoating is why today in destructive rioting there are always people—the "oppressors"—who are targeted for attack (sometimes these scapegoats have been dead for hundreds of years, such as the infamous "Dead White Males" responsible for every problem in the U.S., and, indeed, the world).

After the rioting and attacks are over, those involved — however temporarily — feel renewed and rejuvenated, because they have "cleansed" themselves, not of their pity and fear, but their resentment and hate.

This scapegoating is the main thing Nietzsche noticed about Dionysius. All pagan religions, he told us, are Dionysian. They take the point of view of the victimizer; the scapegoats are always guilty and were killed for the utilitarian "greater good."

Christianity, on the other hand, for the first time in history took the point of view of the victim. As the Gospels show, Jesus was the innocent victim, although the religious leaders of the time considered him guilty ("It is expedient that one man should die for the sake of the people").

The Russian writer Dmitri Merejkowski saw the same division that Nietzsche did: he believed all religions could be divided into two basic ones: in the first, Man sacrifices Man to Man. In the second, God sacrifices Himself to Man.

Today, the French philosopher and theologian Rene Girard, author of Violence and the Sacred and Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World, is probably the most well-known writer about scapegoating. Not surprisingly, he has been influenced by Nietzsche, whom he considered a prophet. A crazed one, but still a prophet.

Girard thought the function of a scapegoat was to renew society, however imperfectly, and another theologian, Walter Wink, agreed with him, calling it "the myth of redemptive violence," i.e., the world can be reborn through violence.

Girard has suggested scapegoating should have ended with Jesus' sacrifice, because it was the first time in history the scapegoat was considered innocent. Before that, he tells us, people always thought the scapegoats deserved exactly what they got.

The psychiatrist M. Scott Peck said scapegoating is "the genesis of human evil," because when they do it people ignore their own guilt and other flaws and project them onto other people, whom they believe have to be destroyed to rid the world of whom they have defined as evil.

In the 20th Century the Nazis and most especially the Communists (who were far, far worse than the Nazis), were masters at this killing of those they defined as scapegoats, and therefore damned as evil. Each thought their society would be renewed after violently getting rid of their scapegoats.

Each of those ideologies, as Merejkowski wrote, sacrificed Man to Man. And, as Nietzsche predicted, each were worshippers of Dionysius and his destructive frenzies. His observations allowed him to predict the carnage of the 20th Century — and in his opinion, beyond.

I've read estimates of 177 million to 200 million people in the 20th Century killed in various wars. All, ultimately were scapegoats; all, ultimately, were sacrificed to Dionysius.

All this applies to Christians? To some, yes, I believe it does. I've heard them referred to as Christian Zionists, or more insultingly (or maybe just more accurately), Rapture monkeys or Rapture nutters.

I consider these types of Christians to be Christians in name only. CHRINOs, you might say. They do little more than give lip service to the teachings of Jesus, and would be much more honest if they just called themselves Zionists, since many of them think more of Israel than they do of Jesus.

Perhaps I should just call them worshippers of Dionysius.

At first these people, who have cobbled together their beliefs out of unrelated passages in the Bible (courtesy of two itinerant preachers named John Darby and Cyrus Scofield), thought the Soviet Union was the anti-Christ, which was going to invade the Middle East and bring about the end of the world. When that didn't pan out they started pinning their hopes on the Islamic world. First the U.S.S.R. was the scapegoat; now it's Muslims.

What these people hope to do is to kick-start the Apocalypse so Jesus will come back, destroy his enemies — currently Muslims; who knows who's next? — kill about two-third of the Jews in Israel and convert the rest, and then rule over a reborn world. That's why they have to support Israel — they are convinced it's the only way they're going to be Raptured into Heaven. Which means they don't have to first die to get there.

Israel comes first for these people; Jesus, second. They don't know this and certainly wouldn't believe it if told.

Unfortunately, these people are Biblical literalists, and when this idolatry of the written word takes hold of people, it invariably leads to the justification — indeed rationalization — for the worst of crimes.

To describe these "Christians'" doings in one word: Dionysius. These people want the world to erupt in slaughter, disease, starvation and war —the ultimate party hosted by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse — so their scapegoats will be destroyed, and then the world reborn. If that's not worshipping Dionysius in the worst possible way, then what is?

Dionysius belongs to what Mircea Eliade called "the myth of the eternal return." This myth has roots in non-Christian classical civilization, and in it the creation of society is followed by the degeneration of it and then by regeneration.

This notion helped the ancients deal with the uncertainty of the future, just as it helps CHRINOs deal with our uncertain future. Although, in their minds, there is nothing uncertain about it.

The writers I've quoted are telling us when certain groups of people believe society (or the world) is degenerating, a scapegoat must be found and destroyed (currently, the Islamic world, followed by the entire world), so society can be regenerated (the return of Jesus).

I doubt any of these CHRINOs has any conscious understanding that they worship a Greek god and also believe in a pagan concept — the Myth of the Eternal Return. Or, better yet, that they are scapegoaters par excellence, since they want to sacrifice the entire world, not just a goat, the way the ancient Hebrews did.

CHRINOs want to blood-sacrifice to their God millions of Muslims, Jews and Christians who do not believe as they do — in fact, everyone who does not believe as they do.

The most perverse things about these CHRINOs is that, contrary to what they so fervently tell us, they no longer believe in the sacrifice of Jesus.

If they really believed Jesus took the sins of the world onto himself to appease the wrath of God (and this belief is courtesy of St. Anselm), they wouldn't want to visit their own sins — their Dionysian slaughter and death/rebirth — onto the world. They wouldn't have replaced Jesus with Dionysius.

They wouldn't have sought political power (defined by Jesus as Satanic in one of his Temptations) in their attempts to start Holy World War I in the Middle East, or helped put into office George Bush (whose favorite "philosopher," Jesus Christ, apparently personally told him it was okay to start two unnecessary wars).

The political power of these people can be crushing. Bush once criticized something Israel did, and he received 10,000 angry emails from them. He never made that mistake again.

That's the rub. These people would just be harmless crackpots except for the fact they have gained such political influence they used the power of the State to start two wars, both still ongoing and with no end in sight.

These CHRINOs, with their lust for their "Left Behind" best-sellers, don't want to be around when the hammer comes down. They want to avoid the riots and dwell in their fiction until they get wafted up into Heaven — the Rapture — so all the unsaved can suffer the Tribulation. They want the world to end and be regenerated but expect to be watching it from on high. They don't want to experience the drunken rioting and destruction, the wars and disease and starvation.

Instead they want to read about those things vicariously, the way the Greeks had their Dionysian festivals turned into theater, then instead of going home purged of pity and fear, they expect to leave the theater permanently.

In fact, they appear to have no pity at all, but a lot of fear, which they have purged through their delusions. Perhaps they are also engaging in some gloating and self-righteousness, too. (Aristotle noticed their attitude in his Poetics, when he wrote, "If an enemy kills an enemy, there is nothing to excite pity either in the act or the intention... ")

I am not familiar with any belief in the history of the world to rival this perversion of Christianity, this replacing of Jesus with Dionysius.

CHRINOs have no guilt over what they expect, and indeed, they should be consumed with it, and as such, give up their beliefs. Where is their contrition, their sorrow for what they believe and want? It doesn't exist. They have no empathy for the innocent. They take the point of view of the victimizer, not the victim.

Instead, they believe they are innocent, their hands free of blood, because to them it's God's will. And they don't want to see it any other way.

When the Rapture and Tribulation do not happen (being that both are unbiblical), how are these people going to atone for what they've done? They won't. Instead of accepting responsibility they will instead find scapegoats and turn on them. But who will it be? That I don't know. Their own leaders, like obese blasphemer John Hagee? I certainly hope so.

Jacques Barzun, in his book, From Dawn to Decadence, wrote, "When people see futility and the absurd as normal, the culture is decadent. The term is not a slur; it is a technical label. A decadent culture offers opportunities chiefly to the satirist... "

Since what CHRINOs believe is both futile and absurd, it is not only decadent, but a parody of Christianity. That is why it is so easy to mock it. I'd have to describe these people the way Erasmus did in his time: "Christians... enslaved by blindness and ignorance."

I close with something Girard wrote in Violence and the Sacred: "Men can dispose of their violence more efficiently if they regard the process not as something emanating from within themselves, but as a necessity imposed from without... violence and the sacred are inseparable... violence seeks shelter in religion."

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Feminism is Based on Envy

The modern feminist movement can, I believe, be said to have been built on an impersonal, generalized envy...Most women would say, I suspect, that not envy but a strong sense of injustice powered the feminist movement. They would not be wrong, but I would only add that envy and a sense of injustice are not always that easily distinguished, let alone extricated, one from the other.-Joseph Epstein

Feminism, being leftist, is based on envy, as all leftism is based on envy. It is based on the envy of both sexes, of both women and men.

And, like all leftism, it can only be imposed by the force of the State. Of course it will never work, not in the long run, because, as Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn wrote in Leftism Revisited, "Leftists don't merely misunderstand human nature. They don't understand it at all."

Leftists, however, don't believe they are equal to others. Instead they believe they are intellectally and morally superior to the average person, and believe not only should they prescribe for them, but their prescriptions should have the force of law to back them up. Of course, these Anointed (as Thomas Sowell mocked them) don't believe they should follow their advice for others.

The original hard-care feminists were the oddest of oddballs: either man-hating lesbians or women who couldn't get (didn't want) husband, home and children. Therefore, they had to devalue women who wanted these things. And in many ways, it worked.

The also envied men, and since the main defense against envy is devaluation, they devalued men -- just as they had devalued women. For example, in the year 2011 I had two women tell me, "Men are responsible for all the problems in the world." (Neither of them had husband, home and children.)

Envy is the ugliest and most destructive emotion in history. It is the only one of the Seven Deadly Sins that isn't any fun. It is if anything an attack on goodness itself.

I've always been such a low-envy person it took me years to realize what a problem envy is. Now I realize it is the worst problem ever.

The destructiveness of envy has been noticed in one of the most well-known myths in the Western world -- the story of the Garden of Eden.

When Adam and Eve are caught breaking the rules, Adam immediately claims he is innocent and devalues Eve by saying, "She made me do it." Eve claims she is innocent and says the serpent made her do it.

The serpent is a symbol of envy and hate, as John Milton well-noticed in Paradise Lost.

This myth tells us than when people claim they're innocent -- and are not -- their first defense is to blame their problems on someone else. That blame is usually based on envy.

Example: some months ago I was watching TV and saw three coeds from the University of Georgia savaging the men in college. They had nothing good to say about them (one said they showed up on dates "In a dirty t-shirt and holding a bag of condoms"). Of course, not one of them suggested women had a problem, too. Apparently it never even occured to them.

Why were they doing this? In their minds, right or wrong, men were denying them what they wanted: ambitious men, who wanted to make a lot of money, and of course, good-looking and taller than they are. And would marry them, be faithful, and somehow support their careers and want children, too.

Because men were denying them what they thought they wanted, they envied men's power to make them happy and so had to devalue them. "I'm innocent're the one with the problem." They project their problems on other people.

Never disturb the innocence of the self-righteous. You'll get nothing more than outrage.

In other words, what these three women on TV are doing is putting angel's wings on themselves and horns, a spaded tail and a pitchfork on men. That is not conducive to seeing things clearly.

This blaming others for your problems -- projection -- is the first defense people engage in. What parent has not heard every child at one time or another claim, "You/he/she made me do it!"

The psychiatrists Melanie Klein and Joan Riviere wrote this about projection, "The first and the most fundamental of our insurances or safety measures against feelings of pain, of being attacked, or of helplessness --one from which so many others spring -- is that device we call projection. All painful and unpleasant sensations and feelings in the mind are by this device automatically relegated outside oneself...[W]e blame them on someone else. [Insofar] as such destructive forces are recognized in ourselves we claim that they have come there arbitrarily and by some external agency...[P]rojection is the baby's first reaction to pain and it probably remains the most spontaneous reaction in all of us to any painful feeling throughout our lives."

Another name for projection is "scapegoating." The French philosopher and theologian Rene Girard, author of Violence and the Sacred and Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World, believes function of a scapegoat was to renew society, and another theologian, Walter Wink, agreed with him, calling it "the myth of redemptive violence," i.e., the world can be reborn through violence.

In other words, feminism believes society and women can be reborn by devaluing and scapegoating men. Ultimately, this means trying to turn men into women.

For the last several decades psychologists and other scholars who study envy have noticed there is a sequence: envy, followed by guilt, followed by reparations, followed by gratitude. And, as has been noticed for several hundred years, if not longer, without gratitude you cannot be happy.

One of the worst things about envy is that you want to destroy the people who make you happy, because of the power they have over you to make you happy ("biting the hand that feeds you"). That should ideally lead to guilt, which leads to reparations, which then leads to gratitude. To quote Meister Eckhart, "If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, 'thank you,' that would suffice."

The Catholic church noticed several hundred years ago that people were absolved of their guilt by confession and penance (the word "atonement" reans "at-one-ment": to become one, i.e., whole again). In other words, guilt followed by reparation.

The ancient Greeks noticed it, too, which is why after Hercules went temporarily insane and slaughterd his family he had to do penance. That is, his twelve labors.

You can also see guilt followed by atonement in the movie, The Mission, where after Robert DeNiro murders his brother he has to drag his armor up a hill then devote his life to fighting the slavery he had until then supported.

Ideally, you get over your envy and instead are grateful to the person who can make you happy. As Carl Jung once said, you can have power or love, but not both.

In politics there are no shades of grey; everything is either black or white, good or bad. That is the nature of politics. So not only is it based on force, it is based on propaganda and setting people at each other's throats.

As John Mason Brown wrote, "Nowhere are prejudices more mistaken for truth, passion for reason, and invective for documentation than in politics. This is a realm, peopled only by villains or heroes, in which everything is black or white and gray is a forbidden color."

When everything is seen as all-good or all-bad, either innocent or guilty, envy and resentment is going to be ever-increasing, and as for gratitude and happiness, there will be less and less of it.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Wise as Serpents, Harmless as Doves

"Keep your friends close - keep your enemies closer" - Michael Corleone

"Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent." Who said that? Thoreau? Emerson? Nope. It was Salvor Hardin, Mayor of Terminus. Who's he? Well, he's not real, except in people's imaginations. He was one of the characters in Isaac Asimov's novel, Foundation.

Like all pithy sayings, it's not true all the time. But overwhelmingly, it is true. It's so true I've memorized it, and when I memorize something I consider important I move something old out of my brain to make space for something new. At this rate, in just a few more years I'll get rid of all the junk and just have good stuff.

What Asimov was pointing out is that people who use their brains, in the long run, beat the custard-heads and poltroons who don't. And those who don't use their brains usually rapidly resort to violence. Usually, they don't win. In the long run, I suspect, never.

To me, Asimov's fictional saying is related to a real saying: "Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves." (Matt. 10:16)

I once saw the above quote translated as "understand the intellect of serpents." I believe that to be more accurate. It intuitively makes more sense. Understand the intellect of the serpents you're dealing with, but be as harmless as a dove. (Anyone who makes it through middle school understands the intellect of serpents.)

There are a lot of ways that saying can be understood. Why is a serpent used? In the story of the Garden of Eden, the serpent is a symbol of hate and envy. He envies Adam and Eve and wants to "bring them down." This is what envy always tries to do. It usually tries to do it subtly, and not surprisingly, the serpent is described as "subtle." The most subtle of the beasts.

How about, "Understand those who are motivated by hate and envy (which very often leads to violence), so be as harmless as a dove"? What do doves do? For one, they fly away from trouble. They're free. They don't slither on the ground like snakes and their kin, politicians. They're not motivated by hate and envy. They've always been symbols of peace (they're also symbols of the Holy Spirit). I suspect they're a lot smarter than snakes. They're not totally non-violent, because they do occasionally peck in self-defense. I've even seen birds dive-bomb cats.

Is there a better modern translation of this saying? How about, "Understand the intellect of Yosemite Sam, or the Tasmanian Devil, or Daffy Duck, or Elmer Fudd, or Marvin the Martian, and be as harmless as Bugs Bunny"?

In other words, understand the mind of the psychotic, the psychopathic, the nutcase empire builders, the war-mongering, the cowardly...and outsmart them. And certainly don't be like them! Be as harmless and peaceful as a dove. Outsmart and out-trick your opponents, just like ol' Bugs. For that matter, Jesus outsmarted his opponents ("And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.").

The saying can be seen as the difference between coercion, and persuasion. Serpents are violent. And they're sneaky, too. I once saw a snake grab a toad from behind. The toad never saw what was coming. And I've lost track of the times I've been on top of snakes before I saw them. I've never had that problem with a bird. It's a good thing snakes don't bother me.

On the one hand we have the violent, the sneaky, the backstabbing, the hateful and envious (and aren't all those traits related?). And on the other hand we have the peaceful and the free. The philosophy of the Serpent as opposed to that of the Dove...which appears to be pretty much the same as the difference between the armchair-general Chickenhawks and the Doves ("therefore understand the intellect of chickenhawks and be as harmless as doves"?).

How does all of this relate to the undeclared wars the U.S. is in, the one planned and started by the neocons? If we look at the neocons as serpents, then they must be motivated by hate and envy. They have to be sneaky, backstabbing and untrustworthy. They would be violent and cowardly. They would be liars. Dang! Jesus was right! There are also some other sayings of Jesus that can be applied to the neocons. Here's some: "Be careful of false prophets. They come to you looking gentle like sheep, but they are really dangerous like wolves. You will know these people by what they do.

Grapes don't come from thornbushes. And figs don't come from thorny weeds. In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit. Every tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. In the same way, you will know these false prophets by what they do."

Does the saying about serpents and doves give us any clues as to how to deal with the wars? It sure does. In order to understand how, we have to look at the archetype of the Trickster. The aforementioned Bugs is a Trickster. He outsmarts his opponents.

Everyone has a bit of Trickster in him; that's why it is the oldest archetype known. If it is true that the late Osama bin Laden was behind the attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon, why did he do it?

He did it because he is (was) a little bit of a Trickster. He wanted the U.S. to overreact, which it did. He wanted to start a war between the US and Islam, which is what appears to be happening.

Let's look at some basic Trickster tactics from Sun Tzu's The Art of War. Do you think bin Laden read the book? I do. Did Dubya or the Kenyan read it? I doubt it.

How about, "All warfare is based on deception." Then we have, "Hold out baits to lure the enemy," like flying airplanes into skyscrapers. Another is to make him fight on many fronts, like Afghanistan and Iraq. Still another is to make it a long war to impoverish the enemy's citizens.

Another one is to win battles without firing a shot ("those skilled in war subdue the enemy's army without battle"). An example? The US getting rid of the apostate Saddam Hussein. I'll bet his fundamentalist opponents are cheering the fact the US did their work for them ("Ha ha! Dumb American government! Big and stupid!"). How about the current administration believing it can conquer the Middle East and remold it? Do they really believe millions of people can be shoveled around like wet concrete? Sun Tzu had a comment about that, too – "if he is arrogant, try to encourage his egotism."

What should the U.S. have done? Simple. Outsmarted our opponents by not falling into their trap. Since it takes two to have a fight, you can say we should have "turned the other cheek."

Imagine that the administration had actually used its brains. What if we have brought home all our soldiers from the 750 military bases in 145 countries, cut 90% of our taxes, retired the national debt, and deregulated the economy? What we if had gone 100% to the free market? What if we started drilling for oil in the mudflats in Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico? What if we started building safe nuclear-power plants?

There would have been an explosion of wealth in the U.S. Our opponents in the Middle East would sink further and further in the poverty that has characterized the region for a thousand years. Without oil, the whole area is blighted. What if we kicked out the uninvited and dangerous immigrants in this country, stopped interfering politically and militarily in the affairs of other countries, and instead told them, "We will trade peaceably with you, and that's all"?

Now that's what I call outsmarting our opponents! Instead, the administration has fallen into our enemies' trap, and we are in what appears to be a long war that's going to solve nothing.

Understanding the intellect of serpents...and being as harmless as doves. Truer words have rarely been spoken.

No One Believes in Equality

No one believes in equality, no matter how much they claim they do. To be totally equal, people would have to be totally identical, the way two quarters or two nickels are identical. And being identical, they’d be interchangeable.

The closest to total equality and total identicalness in nature are bees, termites and ants, but even they are not identical and still have a division of labor, so they’re not interchangeable. If we go to a level even more primitive than insects, we can go to amoebae, which reproduce by fission, so each offspring is identical to the parent. This concept, for people, sounds like something out of a bad science-fiction movie.

On TV and in the movies, the closest are the Borg from Star Trek, but they’re still not equal and identical. They’re close, though, for humans.

Incidentally, I was always amused by the Borg Queen’s puzzled question, “Why do you resist us? We only wish to improve the quality of your lives.” As both Jesus and Aesop noticed, all dictators call themselves benefactors. Both referred to tyrants as wolves and foxes, definitions Vilfredo Pareto used – he wrote the first used force; the latter, fraud.

Let’s do a thought experiment and imagine if people were totally equal and therefore identical and interchangeable. We’d be clones, meaning we’d have to take over our evolution, an idea which has made science-fiction writers salivate for a few centuries, long before H.G. Wells and his The Island of Dr. Moreau. We’d either be hermaphrodites or else sexless clones, with babies grown in artificial wombs (the artificial wombs were a staple of the TV series, Space: Above and Beyond).

Loveless, sexless clones, since love and lust are too upsetting to our well-ordered Myrmidon society. Aldous Huxley came close to visualizing such a society in Brave New World, but he didn’t go all the way. Kurt Vonnegut also came close, with his famous satirical short story, “Harrison Bergeron,” in which an attempt at love and inequality were ended with some shotgun blasts.

All of us would look exactly alike to avoid envy, unless we can rid ourselves of it. The British writer L. P. Hartley wrote a novel, Facial Justice, in which women got plastic surgery so no one would be any prettier than another.

We’d have to edit our genes and change our brains and get rid of not only sex and love, but families and religion and other “primitive” things we wouldn’t need anymore.

We’d have to think exactly alike. Isn’t that the goal of Political Correctness/Cultural Marxism, anyway? The only way that could happen is if we were a hive mind (bees, again), such as the one Orson Scott Card wrote about in Ender’s Game. We’d have no individuality whatsoever.

Since we’d be clones with a hive mind, the individual would mean nothing. The death of an individual would mean no more than clipping a fingernail. The white-suited Stormtrooper clones in Star Wars are a well-known example of those fingernails. So are the Borg, for that matter.

What an awful world! It wouldn’t be a Heaven on Earth; it’d be a Hell. Why would anyone want it? Don’t the supporters of “equality” ever think it though to its logical end? If they did, they’d be horrified.

I suppose a few lunatics, probably some man-hating atheistic nihilistic socialist/radical feminist anti-Western New York lesbians, fantasize about such a world, but the mentally-ill hallucinations of one out of every 50 million people don’t exactly count.

We don’t believe in equality in sports. You’ll never see Affirmative Action there. Yet we do believe in it economically, even though it’s a brake on wages and the creation of jobs.

Michelle Obama had a job at a Chicago hospital making some $300,000 a year. When she left the administration eliminated her job. It was a make-work job because she was (is) an incompetent Affirmative Action baby.

We don’t believe in Affirmative Action for romantic relationships. I’ve pointed out to people they should imagine if there were laws enforcing such equality, and to think about the trouble it would cause.

Imagine if women were required by law to ask out a certain number of men a week, keep track of it, and report every week to the Federal Affirmative Action Bureau of Dating and Romance. Then bureaucrats would call the men to make sure the women weren’t lying. If they were caught lying, there would be stiff fines, of course.

There would have to be re-education classes to forcibly remake the hearts/minds of resentful, recalcitrant women, the way men at corporations are required to attend “sensitivity” classes about workplace sexual harassment, etc.

Nonsense? Of course it is. But it’s not much more nonsensical than businesses having to file reams of paperwork to the federal government to make sure they hire they right number of women, blacks, Hispanics or whoever else is the “minority” du jour.

Since equality cannot exist, then what do words such as “sexism,” “racism,” etc. mean? They mean nothing, which means they can mean anything. They mean whatever those who have captured the culture want them to mean. No one talks about “white maleism,” even though Affirmative Action means, “white males need not apply, since you won’t be hired, even if you’re the best-qualified, and if you do get hired, you’ll be carrying the unqualified we have to hire by law.”

If “equality” is not about equality, what is it about? Ultimately it’s about special rights. It always is. It’s about money/political power, one of the worst banes of human existence.

Since we are not going to have equality, being that it is impossible, what we will end up with is what we always end up with until revolts overturn it: a vanishingly small minority of extremely wealthy and politically powerful people, who crush everyone else with the power of the State and try to force equality and poverty on them.

It’s why we end up with loons like the multimillionaire Al Gore (whose father made the family fortune through political connections), who insists everyone else make crushing sacrifices while he lives in a mansion that uses the energy of ten houses. Or how one percent of the population has used the government to appropriate 40% of the national wealth.

“Equality” itself is a fraud, one that many people believe in unwittingly. It doesn’t lead to equality at all, just wealth and power for a handful and poverty for nearly everyone else. The German psychotherapist Hans Prinzhorn called it “the tyranny of a clique in the name of the equality of all.”

The writer Richard K. Morgan (author of the amusingly preposterous satire, Market Forces, a leftist stab at what I call Cosmodemonic Transnational Megacorporations, the kind that finance both sides in a war) made this comment about such a tyranny: "Society is, always has been and always will be a structure for the exploitation and oppression of the majority through systems of political force dictated by an élite, enforced by thugs, uniformed or not, and upheld by a willful ignorance and stupidity on the part of the very majority whom the system oppresses."

About the time Morgan was born, back in the middle Sixties, Norman Spinrad wrote a bloody, gruesome and sometimes repulsive novel illustrating Morgan’s comment – The Men in the Jungle, a book that is an example of Dostoevsky’s observation in The House of the Dead that "Blood and power intoxicate; coarseness and depravity are developed; the mind and the heart are tolerant of the most abnormal things, till at last they come to relish them. The man and the citizen is lost for ever in the tyrant, and the return to human dignity, to repentance and regeneration becomes almost impossible."

It’s not that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. There are people who haven’t been corrupted by power. It’s far more accurate to say: blood and power intoxicate, and immunity corrupts. If one sentence defines the abuse of government, that’s it.

There are people who believe they are intellectually and morally superior to everyone else, and who are convinced they can “rationally” plan society and move people around like chess pieces (Michael Oakeshott called these people “rationalists” and Thomas Sowell sneered at them as “the Anointed”). I don’t really understand the mentality, being that it is so alien to me, but it certainly exists.

It’s a tribute to the empathic power of the human imagination that I can comprehend at all the mentality of such people. Still, I find it nearly impossible to understand their blindness and hypocrisy.

Their names are legion – Ralph Nader, Michael Moore, Barbra Streisand, Betty Friedan, Gloria Steinem, Noam Chomsky, the Clintons, the Obamas, the Kennedys, Nancy Pelosi, Cornel West, John Hagee, Jesse Jackson, George Soros – and all of them believe they are better than the dim-witted unwashed masses and should rule ever them. As long, of course, as they are extremely wealthy and politically powerful -- and their subjects are not.

In other words, everyone but them is supposed to be an identical, expendable worker-ant. Does anyone really believe that universal health-care and the rationing and lack of quality it will create will apply to our rulers? Of course not. It’s only for the anonymous, expendable masses, not the politically powerful.

I am amazed that so many people are hypnotized sheeple who never wake up until many of them have followed their leaders off a cliff. The blind leading the blind, right into a ditch. Many see the government as a never-empty breast from which all goodness flows – ignoring the fact that perhaps 200 million people lost their lives in the 20th Century to government-created wars. Only those who have been blinded by propaganda believe the State is their friend.

Maybe the Grand Inquisitor was right in The Brothers Karamazov when he said that people are desperate to give up their freedom to a leader who will take care of them. Apparently there are contradictory impulses in people: one for freedom and one for being taken care of, which, when it comes to the State, is another word for slavery.

I am quite sympathetic to libertarian anarchists who believe there should be no government at all, although they live in a fantasy world that will never exist. Americans at one time understood the government is not reason, it is force and fraud – as George Washington noticed, it is, like fire, a handy servant but a dangerous master.

Some writers have been so frustrated with the blindness and stupidity of people/herds they’ve written novels in which we’re ruled by benevolent robots. Harry Bates wrote a story – “Farewell to the Master” – which was filmed as The Day the Earth Stood Still and featured the famous robot, Gort.

Jack Williamson wrote The Humanoids, in which each person had a personal robot to watch over them and make sure they did no harm. These stories may sound silly, but I understand the sentiment -- left on their own, the narcissistic/psychopathic minority appropriates wealth and political, economic and often religious power and crushes the half-asleep sheeple.

One of my friends, who is over 80 years old and who was involved in politics his entire life, told me he’s met one honest politician in his career. The rest had sex, money, drug and alcohol problems. I think history confirms his observations. And it’s the public that pays the price for politicians’ flaws.

What to do? The public schools, from beginning to end, are hopeless about teaching children about the nature of the State and the tyranny of the few and the forced equality and poverty of the many. If I had my way, I’d close them down. These days, much of the time, they’re not educating children; they’re traumatizing them with leftist fantasies.

Churches have failed, too, being that so many are busy with their Tribulation/ Rapture fantasies about how Jesus is going to come back, kill two-thirds of the Jews in Israel, convert the rest to Christianity, then rule the world for a thousand years. If they’re not teaching these “Left Behind” hallucinations, they’re supporting open borders to increase their congregations.

So it’s up to people to educate themselves. Government should be the servant, not the master; the more local and smaller it is, the better and more efficient; politicians are always to be closely watched, never trusted and to understand they can be removed in a heartbeat. The federal government, which originally wasn’t to do much more than build some roads and run the Post Office, has now turned into an unmanageable, unsustainable, war-mongering, economy-and society-destroying behemoth, one that is the implacable enemy of the citizenry.

Since we’re always going to have government, I’d be satisfied if people stopped seeing it as an omnipotent benevolent parent and instead saw it as the eternal oppressor and murderer that it is.

The political scientist Kevin Phillips pointed out that countries go through three phases – agricultural, industrial, financial. In the past when they have become financial empires they have always collapsed. The United States has become a military/financial/corporate empire, with a concentration of financial and political power in a few hands and the enforcement of an impossible equality – but a most definitely possible poverty – on everyone else.

Being that such empires are houses built on sand, I see no way for the United States, in its current form, to be able to endure.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What My Last Girlfriend Did to Me

Everyone is quasi-insane, some more than others, and love is where you find it. You just have to find someone whose quasi-insanity dovetails with yours, and that is why I am a magnet for Women of Unusual Personality.

My last girlfriend, for one perfect example out of many perfect examples I have, told me that not only was she lots smarter than me, but that she could also beat me up. Her father was 6’4” and one of her brothers is 6’6” and 300 pounds. The other brother is 6’8” and 320. She says one of them looks like Bull in the “Night Court” TV program. I forget which brother she meant, but does it really matter?

She is 5’8” and 145 pounds. She lifts weights and is so strong she can curl her toes down and pop the soles off her shoes. I’m 6” and 175 and to this day she insists she can beat me up. Or down, depending on your definition.

I will admit she is an amazing natural athlete, was a soccer fanatic for years (which is why she has no cartilage in her knees), and once got knocked cold by a line-drive softball to the head.

I never beat her in air hockey. She just destroyed me. I held my own against her at miniature golf. The only thing I always beat her at was slot cars, which made me cackle evilly and really pissed her off.

She got an MBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago and told me her IQ is 143, which is why she insists she is smarter than me, which if I didn’t let her think that she probably would have started crying, which girls do a lot. She got a job with the federal government and made $120,000 a year on my tax money, which always made her smirk when I bought it up.

Her sister and her husband got in early on Microsoft and are worth about 20 million dollars. They not only have an ocean cabin cruiser and an airplane, but also a house on the beach with an elevator, for God’s sake! Her sister knows Bill Gates and said when she wasn’t married Gates was clearly interested in her, but she was not interested in him, which doesn’t surprise me at all, and shouldn’t have surprised him, either, because this girl is six feet tall.

That was her background. Then she met me. She immediately gave me the icy eyeball when I showed up in my summer uniform of beige short pants, a Hawaiian shirt, a baseball cap, and white socks with white sneakers. But I melted her cold, cold heart because I made her laugh, as I make many women laugh. and then their clothes fall off, and they’re never quite sure how it happened. They’re always really grateful, though, even though they’re embarrassed afterward what with the baby talk and passing out and all.

She was also instantly horrified by my car. She waxed wroth and frothed at the sight of it. I have only bought one new car in my car, because new cars are a con. This one was the one new car. It was a Chevy Cavalier and I had it towed to the junkyard with 480,000 miles on it. She told me if I hadn’t she was going to have it towed away and crushed into a cube. She hated it that much.

When she got in it, she shrieked like a bunny what got dumped into a blender. She stopped at Wal-Mart and bought a bagful of cleaning supplies, and spent an hour scrubbing the inside of my car, claiming it was disgusting. She was hallucinating, the way women always hallucinate dirt.

She kept hollering, “Dirt! Dirt! Look at all this dirt! Dirt! Dirt! Dirt!” even there was no dirt in the car. She even bought a scrub-brush, which I still have, although I now have a van. She’s never been inside it. She’d start scrubbing, I guarantee you.

She did worse things to me. She got me in headlocks and dragged me to Hugh Grant films. I had to watch Bruce and Arnold and Clint on Netflix in the garage, where I had a TV, a fridge and my Barcalounger. That’s where she banished me while she Martha Stewarted my apartment.

When she first saw my apartment, her eyes rolled up in her head. I will admit it looked as if someone had loaded all my belongings into a cannon, opened the front door and fired it, along with a bunch of cheeseburger wrappers and empty bottles of Yoo Hoo. But it wasn’t that bad.

She also threw away all my clothes, including my underwear and shoes. She said she would not be seen in public with me wearing my sneakers, which were the very spiffy kind with the Velcro straps. I felt like I had licked a car battery when I saw my shoes were gone. Where was my guardian angel on that one?

She threw away my tighty-whities and made me wear boxer briefs, which she said were “hot.” Sure, whatever. She never wore the Kendra, Warrior Babe of the Galaxy outfit I bought for her. She also laughed at my Star Fleet Command shirt, especially when I unlimbered my “phaser.”

She took me to a clothing store where she and the female clerk basically stood on my feet and used me as a dummy for different outfits. I walked out in that metrosexual layered look. I looked as if I should have minced down the street and flapped my wrists and lisped about what a wonderful color puce is. It was horrible! I was about ready to cut her into little pieces and put her in freezer bags after doing that to me.

She bought me a pug puppy and on the way home held him in her lap the entire time. I had to roll up my window every time a vehicle passed, because she thought the noise would wake him up.

She also informed me she thought about keeping him because she told me I would kill him by dropping him, stepping on him, sitting on him, poisoning him, losing him, rolling over on him, sneezing on him, or looking at him wrong. But she did relent and let me keep him. Later on, when he grew up and ran in circles all the time, she didn’t want anything to do with him. She also didn’t like the fact he tried to fill her ears and nostrils with dog spit.

She told me I snored like a chainsaw and always slept on the couch in the other room. When I did start snoring – if I did snore, and she had no proof I ever did – she would jab me in the ribs with her elbow and wake me up. And she jabbed hard, too.

After all this I was about ready to roll on my back with my feet in the air like a dead bug, or maybe one of those plastic soldiers little boys pose in war scenarios.

Women always try to change men but they never realize it’s not possible. It doesn’t stop them from trying, though. And they never realize how obvious they are with the attempts at manipulation.

I gave up my man-slut ways for her (although I am now back to them) and what did she do? Try to remove all my good manly-man Cigars&Whiskey software and install her own.

Either that, or else they try to suck the soul right out of your body, like one of those undead zombies when they clamber out of the grave looking for a snack. Blech! Give me back my soul right now, you wench!

Life is messy, like a Lab with diarrhea. Would that every piece fall into place, that couples understand each other, that soul mates really did exist. Instead, generally, people semi-suck.

Do people ever give up on attempts at relationships? Never! And the Dark Gods laff and laff and laff at us, amused to no end.

And women think men are the crazy ones. Hah! If it wasn’t for us they would cry themselves to sleep every night.

Humiliating People to Death

Certain episodes stay in my mind.

When I was 16 years old I was walking down the street one Friday night, heading toward a party, when I saw a girl I knew from high school walking toward me. I did not know her personally, but recognized her, as she recognized me.

She was walking her dog. I had mixed feelings about that: surprise and pity. I was going to a party, and knew I was going to have a great time. She, on the other hand, was walking her dog on a Friday night.

She was not an attractive girl. She was fairly tall and chunky and even plastic surgery wouldn’t improve her looks all that much. And even if she lost weight, she’d never have a nice body.

As she got closer to me, I saw something in her eyes that really surprised me to the point of shock: fear. A lot of fear. I intuitively knew the reason why: she thought I was going to humiliate her.

I was so disconcerted by the fact she was afraid of me I walked by her without saying a word or looking at her.

I doubt anyone had ever purposely humiliated this girl. But she knew what she looked like, and was never invited to parties, and had ever had a boyfriend, and had never even been kissed. That’s pretty bad.

In college I knew a girl who one evening, for some unknown reason, told me that in seventh-grade she had been ostracized. She showed me a picture. A little overweight, with glasses set crooked on her face. But not bad; even kind of cute.

But she had been ignored and ostracized. Over the summer she became the proverbial ugly duckling blossoming into a swan. She got taller, lost weight, got contacts. When she got back to school all the kids who had ostracized her wanted to be her friends. She ignored every one of them.

Hers was a case of feeling humiliated followed by revenge. That’s generally what happens. In fact, it’s so common it’s a law of human nature. Just look at the story of Cain and Abel: Cain feels humiliated, so he gets revenge on his (innocent) brother.

The word that means overwhelming humiliation, namely, mortification, comes from Latin roots that mean "to make dead" {mortis, dead, and facere, to make). This is an old truth that is true today, and it’s a universal one: overwhelming humiliation can kill people.

I don’t mean mortification kills their bodies: it kills their selves. The evidence is so overwhelming I don’t even have to quote anything: all know that the overwhelming humiliation of children, for all practical purposes, kills their selves. And how do you resurrect a dead self?

Then they become adults they end up in prison after committing various appalling crimes, ones committed to get their revenge on “society” and to regain some sort of pride and self-respect.

I remember reading a comment from one teenage school shooter: “The world has wronged me, and I could take it no more.” The feeling of humiliation followed by revenge, which is in a sentence the attempt to replace humiliation with pride – and doing it by violence.

It puzzles me how this truth about humiliation followed by revenge (or as the ancient Greeks described it, Hubris followed by Nemesis) is so little-known. The humiliation of Germany after WWI (and England and the other countries, including the U.S., were just as guilty) led to the revenge know as World War II.

9-11 was revenge on the United States for supporting repressive regimes and overthrowing governments in the Islamic world for some 60 years. Yet, not so mystifyingly when you understand propaganda, it was fed to the American people as an attack by the “Evil Ones” on our “goodness.”

When you understand that natural law of humiliation followed by revenge, you can predict the future. It ain’t hard. And when people flunk their history lessons they have to keep going back to class until they pass.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

I'm Okay; You're Not so Hot

The title of this piece refers to the the attitude of every person, country, ethnic group and tribe that has ever been toward Outsiders. This belief -- which is really, "We're human, but you're not quite -- or not even close," has been one of the pre-eminent causes of war and genocide throughout history. Technically, it's called narcissism.

One of the few decent contributions that Freud made to psychology was his study of narcissism. Wacky he certainly was, but he made up for it by being a superb diagnostician. He was the first that I know of who wrote about "infantile grandiosity." Adult grandiosity has been noticed for thousands of years. The Greeks called it Hubris, always followed by Nemesis. The Bible speaks of "pride going before a fall" (the correct translation of "pride" is the same as "Hubris"). Satan's catastrophic flaw was that of pride, or a completely unrealistic and self-deluded grandiosity that led him to believe he could be God. But Freud was the first to locate this grandiosity as starting in our infancy (Thomas Hobbes came close when he noticed, "The evil man is the child grown strong").

Psychologists of the Object Relations School believe that every infant goes through a period of splitting their selves--and the world outside -- into "all-good" and "all-bad." In a sentence, the "all-good" is grandiose; the "all-bad" is envious, rageful, and hating. Those who don't outgrow this, when they grow up, are afflicted with (among other things) Narcissistic Personality Disorder or, much worse, Anti-Social Personality Disorder (those with Anti-Social Personality Disorder used to be called psychopaths or sociopaths).

Satan, too, is the story of a psychopath--grandiose, rageful, hating, envious. Psychopaths have no conscience, leading them to believe people are things to be exploited and manipulated for their benefit. They are almost always quite charming, too.

I am familiar with only one fiction writer who has consciously written about our tendency to split things into all-good and all-bad, and that is the humorist Tom Bodett, who, in his book The End of the Road, writes about a liberal vegetarian bubble-headed woman who cannot stand the fact her true love has joined the Army. And she cannot forgive him. "Tamara's personal iron gates were guarded by a demon that painted everything black or white," writes Bodett. "Black or white. And she was the only cold judge of which was what. This was black, and her demon would not let her see the light even as it burned inside her." The result? She leaves him, forever. "And Tamara Dupree, soldier of conscience, paragon of wholeness, went out to her bus, looked at the lit, empty windows of a Holiday Inn, and fell apart." Hubris, followed by Nemesis.

Probably the most well-known writer who unconsciously portrayed everything as black or white was the narcissist Ayn Rand, who tried to elevate her mental illness to the status of something divine (she grandiosely called herself "the perfect woman" and the "second- greatest philosopher ever," and denigrated her opponents as "sub- humans" living in "a hell"). Her long-time friend, the psychologist Alan Blumenthal, diagnosed her as suffering from Narcissistic, Paranoid, and Schizoid Personality Disorders. If you know what to look for, all three of these disorders are easily discernable in Atlas Shrugged.

Unfortunately, all of us are prone, in greater or lesser degree, to splitting the world into "all-good" and "all-bad." Tragically, it is part of our nature, and we especially engage in it when under great stress. One of the problems is that we don't know we do it. Since we can't stand the rage, hate and envy in ourselves we cast it onto others. This is scapegoating. We blame the other person. They're the ones responsible for my life, my problems, and my bad feelings! The perceptive and wise story of the Garden of Eden explains it well: Adam scapegoats Eve ("It's her fault!") and Eve scapegoats the serpent ("It's his fault!") The serpent, not at all surprisingly, is a symbol of envy, meaning envy is the basic cause of narcissism and scapegoating (this is exactly what Object Relation theorists have concluded, a few thousand years later). This is also why one of the Ten Commandments reads, "You will not envy." Envy oftentimes leads to murder and theft -- two of the other main prohibitions in the Commandments.

The worst eruptions of rage and hate I have ever witnessed came from envious people. And it was directed at people who weren't much better off than they were. It was then I realized the envious are truly greedy -- no matter how much they're given, it's never enough. What they really want is to drag everyone down to their level. No matter how much taxes are raised on the rich, it will never be enough for the envious.

Rage may be hot, but hate is ice-cold. Only that kind of complete cold-heartedness could allow people to pilot planes into buildings, knowing that children and babies would die.

Every tribe that has ever existed has grandiosely called itself "the Humans" or "the People," devaluing outsiders to the status of sub- or non-humans. Group narcissism, Erich Fromm called it, in such books as Escape From Freedom. Group narcissism explains why tribes could do such bizarre things as treating their own with great kindness and spitting outsiders' babies on spears. Every religion has tried to overcome this Original Sin of ours with such commandments as "Love your neighbor as yourself" or "Do to others as you would have them do to you." The Golden Rule, as C.S. Lewis has pointed out in The Abolition of Man, exists in every religion.

I find it curious, and somehow significant, that the word Jesus used -- "Gehenna" (mistranslated as "Hell" in some Bibles)--is a valley in which infants were sacrificed to the idol Moloch. Human sacrifice is a form of scapegoating; it's also based on our narcissism. Little noticed is that when Jesus drove the money-changers from the Temple he also drove out those selling pigeons and doves for sacrifice to God.

Nations are just tribes writ large. They grandiosely call themselves "the Fatherland," "the Motherland," or speak of "God and Country." I've come to the conclusion it is possible for the citizens in nations to be hypnotized into a mass psychopathology. If they couldn't be then all those millions of soldiers would not have marched off to be slaughtered in WWI and WWII (I've had this fantasy for years that when governments try to start wars everyone in all the countries involved says, "Naw, I don't think so...I'm just fine in my recliner here. Beer?")

Propaganda works by appealing to our narcissism. Propaganda dehumanizes, then demonizes and scapegoats "the enemy," then calls for their destruction, supposedly leading to peace. Steven Spielberg, for a good example, did a despicable thing in his pro-war propaganda film, Saving Private Ryan. He did not portray one of the Germans as a human being. All are cowardly, murderous, shaven-headed thugs (and being shaven-headed they are as interchangeable as cogs. And cogs are things, not humans). I wonder if he's familiar with All Quiet on the Western Front or the movie, The Boat?

The U.S. government, sadly, is no different than any other government in the history of the world. We were founded as something truly different, but now it has gotten to the point where our government has relegated many other nations -- outsiders -- as Not Quite Human. It has meddled for decades in the internal affairs of other countries, supporting murderous tyrants who have slaughtered and abused their citizens. Is it surprisingly the U.S. government is absolutely hated by so many people in the world? That it is called "the Great Satan"? The USG is engaging in a type of human sacrifice: "We have to sacrifice them to save ourselves."

I honestly thought after the collapse of the Soviet Union we were looking at new era of peace. I did not believe the American Empire, without the Cold War to restrain it, would just simply explode across the world, interfering and meddling in nearly every country's business. We have troops in 140-145 countries, and some of the lunatics in the administration believe we should have troops in every country. If other countries had troops here, how would we feel about that?

When you apply the concept of narcissism to politics, it explains many things. Let's take the late Osama bin Laden. Here was a guy with grandiose, unrealistic fantasies covering up the humiliating fact his religion had its Golden Age 1000 years ago and has been left behind by the West. The Islamic countries are so weak we can conquer all of them, although I'm sure it would be a Pyrrhic victory because of guerilla warfare and the loss of domestic liberty. I'm sure bin Laden was eaten alive by envy, hate, and the desire for revenge. I'm also sure he scapegoated the West and blamed all problems on it (I think one of the reasons the WTC was targeted because the essence of envy is to "bring down" the envied. I'm sure most of the Third World envies us and wishes to bring us down, even if they go down with us).

Yet, for all his delusions, bin Laden was right about the U.S. government committing genocide in Iraq. After all, we had to sacrifice them to save ourselves. And it certainly was "worth it," as the oozy Madeleine Albright put it (whenever I see her on TV, I close my eyes and see Jabba the Hutt).

While everyone else was narcissistically idealizing bin Laden as some sort of satanic genius, I instead saw him as a deluded, envious nut, who covered up his humiliation and feelings of inferiority with grandiosity, and who had no idea of what the United States military could do to anyone who got in its way. Stupidity is envy's retarded little brother.

Much of the Islamic world scapegoats Israel ("That country is the cause of all our problems"). If Israel ceased to exist would the Islamic Golden Age bloom again? Nope. What would happen is the standard of living of everyone in the area would collapse. Then someone else would be found to fix the blame upon. And you would find people saying, "We need another 60 years to overcome the fact Israel was here for 60 years," just they way I've heard Americans say, "We need another 300 years to overcome the fact we were slaves for 300 years." It's denying self-responsibility, the bane of humanity.

The United States scapegoated alcohol and tried to get rid of it with Prohibition. What we ended up with is organized crime, which still plagues us. Currently the State is scapegoating drugs, which is why we have that catastrophic failure known as the "War on Drugs."

The essence of narcissism is abuse. In a sense, all countries, politically, are psychopathic in their dealings with other countries. They try to exploit, abuse and manipulate them. This is why I consider the State to be a satanic entity. It's chaos intruding into order.

Narcissists also can't take a joke. They are completely lacking in a self-depreciating sense of humor. That's also of the main characteristics of the State. And most politicians, too (when I think of the typical politician, I think of C.S. Lewis' description of Hell: "a state where everyone is perpetually concerned about his dignity and advancement, where everyone has a grievance, and where everyone lives the deadly serious passions of envy, self-importance and resentment").

The U.S. government has been narcissistically abusing the citizens of other countries, treating them as expendable things, while seeing itself as "good" (This is why Dubya said, "They hate us because we're good"). Foreigners returned the favor and flew planes into our buildings, treating us as things. So we returned the favor again, speaking of "the axis of evil" and "the evil ones" while bombing the rubble in Afghanistan into even smaller rubble. It sounds like children hurling insults at each other--"You're the Great Satan!" "No, I'm not, but you're the Evil Ones!"

Because governments are consistently psychopathic in their dealings with each other, and because they are consistently trying to scapegoat each other, the best thing countries can do is have as little political dealings with others as possible. They should engage in little more than free trade.

Around and around and around we go, and when everyone learns their lesson no one knows.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Oodles of Popularity

An "Oodle" is a unit of popularity discovered -- or maybe just created -- by me when I was about 21. Oodles range from 0 to 100, with 100 being the same as One Bob, and 0 being absolute unpopularity

Since I was so popular, I figured out some things about women.

I have noticed women who are unattractive in face and figure are never going to be popular. This is sad, but it is true. Oddly, women who have nice faces but are fat can be popular, although it is always with short scrawny guys. I do not understand that combination, but I see it at Wal-Mart a lot.

However, fat women with nice faces have to be friendly, talkative and approachable. That's what makes them popular.

The most popular women, as everyone nows, have nice faces, nice figures and are friendly, talkative and approachable. This is obvious and everyone knows it.

A woman with a nice face and figure, if she is unpleasant (and most of them do not know they are) can get laid but cannot attractive a long-term boyfriend. Or, for that matter, any kind of boyfriend at all.

Most of this is an illustration of that old saying, a man can get married but a woman can get laid. However, some can do neither.

I've been told by some elderly women that when they were growing up, their mothers told them to not turn down guys for a date, since they never knew how it would turn out. And they were told to be friendly.

This doesn't happen anymore, for that most part.

In college women were often whining to me there "are no guys." I told them straight out, be friendly, talk to them, and be approachable. They gaped at me like I had sprouted antennae, even though what I was pointing out was obvious!

They apparently thought they were supposed to sit there like bumps of a log and Prince Charming was supposed to show up and sweep them off of their feet, no matter what kind of bores they were.

Parents apparently don't give their children any practical advice about these things. And I'm still having to explain these things to women. And they're still gaping at me like I have antennae.

I also get the antennae look when I point out a woman who describes herself as "strong, independent, successful, smart," etc., can be described in one word: unpleasant. That's why men don't want anything to do with them.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Conspiracy Bugs

"Paranoia is reason in the service of the irrational." - Pat Santy

I recently saw the 2006 movie, "Bug." It bombed at the box office, and no wonder: there is a scene in which the main character, who is a paranoid schizophrenic, wrenches out two of his teeth with a pair of vice grips, because he believes the government has implanted insect egg sacs under his fillings. He also has sores all over his body from digging out non-existent bugs.

It's a bloody, violent, repulsive film. That's on the surface. Underneath, it's a brilliant.

Here's why: mental illness is just normal traits taken to an extreme and made permanent. The main character, being a paranoid schizophrenic, is grandiose, paranoid, and believes there is a -- non-existent and impossibly complex -- conspiracy out to get him. Sounds familiar? It does to me.

There is a lot inherently wrong with the human race. One of those things wrong is the belief in non-existent, indeed impossible conspiracies. It's been noticed as far back as Isaiah in the Old Testament, which warns against falling for such beliefs.

These days, it's the 9-11 "Truthers" who are the nuts, who believe the impossible and the non-existent. Of course, they are not the only ones, just these days the most obvious.

Those who are obsessed with 9-11, and write about it all the time, and devote their lives to it, and who will never, ever give it up, no matter how much evidence is against them, are showing signs of mental illness. That's what the movie is saying.

I wouldn't call them mentally ill, just pretty damn close. Whatever they are, they are not right in the head.

Going on fifty years later, there are still people who refuse to believe Oswald was the only one who shot Kennedy. They have 20 books and boxes and boxes of papers, convinced there were three shooters triangulating on Kennedy, or his driver turned around and shot him, or who knows what else. They will never give it up, just the way people who think the moon landings are a hoax will never give up their beliefs.

Vincent Bugliosi correctly called the obsessive belief in non-existent conspiracies "poison." He is exactly right: it is poison that will ruin peoples' lives.

There is something else in the movie: a lonely woman who has pretty much ruined her life. She's a loser in the correct sense of the word: she had lost almost everything.

She gets sucked into the schizophrenic's world and comes to believe as he does. She comes to believe there are bugs everywhere. She sees them where there are none. In the end, they both die.

What the movie is saying about her and people like her, is that those who have no meaning, importance or community in their lives are the ones who get sucked into believing non-existent conspiracies. It makes them feel important.

If they are not the center of a plot, the focus of terrible, brilliant evil enemies, then what are they? Insignificant? Unimportant? Nobody? At the least, the belief in these conspiracies allows them to blame their problems on someone else.

Chris Hedges, in his book, "War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning," writes this: "The enduring attraction of war is this: Even with its destruction and carnage it can give us what we long for in life. It can give us purpose, meaning, a reason for living. Only when we are in the midst of conflict does the shallowness and vapidness of much of our lives become apparent. Trivia dominates our conversations and increasingly our airwaves. And war is an enticing elixir. It gives us resolve, a cause. It allows us to be noble."

The belief in these conspiracies is always connected to scapegoating, to paranoia, then to murder and human sacrifice. This is something that those who believe everything is a conspiracy don't understand. The Nazis believed in conspiracies against them, as did the Communists.

The death toll for the 20th century through war bought around by the belief in non-existent conspiracies -- 177 million to 200 million.

People who believe in non-existent and impossibly complex conspiracies believe they are at war. And they enjoy it, because it gives them what they lack: meaning to their lives. That is, until the war comes home to them.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Everyone Envies Me

Actually they don't, but I am so low-envy that for many years I was essentially clueless about it. Then after thinking about it for many years, and reading about it, I realized it is the worst and most destructive emotion in the world. It is in fact the only one of the Seven Deadly Sins that isn't any fun at all.

When I was about 21 I had a very attractive girlfriend. I was mystified at the things she told me -- guys telling her (but not to my face) that she could do better than me. And telling me to my face they were going to steal her from me (I laughed at them about that one and told them they were welcome to try).

Then there was the problem with short guys with the Little Man Complex.

There are two main defenses against envy. The first is to devalue the person, which was what has happened to me once than once -- and it has always involved guys trying to get women who were with me.

The second one is to overvalue yourself, and that's what I've notice about Obnoxious Midgets with the Little Man Complex. ("You may be taller than me, but I'm smarter than you, I make more money, I lift weights and can beat you up, etc. etc.")

I think that both defenses go together, but it's that one defense tends to be stronger than the other.

This defense against envy is why there is such a brutal attack on white men as the Cause of All Evil in the World. It's a defense against the fact that white men have created about 97% of everything in the world.

These defenses against envy have even poisoned the relationships between men and women, since so many women put men down, i.e., devalue them. "Men are the cause of all the problems in the world...I can't find one who is tall, handsome, well-to-do, loyal to me...won't give me home, husband, children.." so as a defense against the perceived power of these men (and the envy of them) they have to be devalued.

Since 49% of people are not married (and 60% of those in college are women) we are looking at a coming devastation that is even worse than the problems we have now.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The War of Perverted Religion

Some time ago a friend of mine, who teaches college economics, called me in a semi-panic. "Tell me what you know about Nietzsche," he asked. It turns out he had jokingly told a philosophy professor he would cover one of his classes, and, the next thing he knew, he was scheduled to be a substitute teaching Nietzsche. About the only thing he knew about Nietzsche, he told me, was that he had a ferocious mustache and a genuis-high forehead.

"Tell the students," I suggested, "that when Nietzsche said, 'God is dead,' he meant the educated classes of his time had lost their religious faith. He believed that with no one to forgive them, their guilt would cause them to hate themselves, and ultimately, hate others. He claimed that because of this loss of faith the 20th century would have what he called 'wars such as have never happened on earth.'"

Nietzsche never meant there had been a heart attack somewhere up in the clouds. He concluded educated people had lost their faith because of 250 years of a science that had aggressively attacked religion, apparently believing the eradication of it would be a benefit for humanity. Nietzsche, even though an atheist himself, thought otherwise.

It turned out he was right, when he wrote his prophecy in 1882 in his book, The Gay Science. Although I've never considered him a philosopher in the traditional sense of the word, since he never wrote about universals or epistemology or any of the other topics philosophers usually cover. But he was a heck of a prophet. One who, when he was right, was terrifyingly right. He cannot be dismissed, even today.

He believed that when the people of his time lost their old religious faith, they would replace it with the new modern faith in rationalism and science -- with atheism, philosophical materialism and evolutionary theory. Science would become the new god, he suggested -- the new idol to be worshipped.

He also warned that when people gave up religion, which is international, they would instead become barbaric nationalists (as if there's any other kind), worshipping the idols of nation and "race."

He could see it coming, but like nearly every prophet in history, could do nothing about it. Rarely do more than a few listen. Usually, they end up as little more than a voice crying in the wilderness.

The Nazis and Communists were so influenced by the ills that Nietzsche diagnosed that historians estimate they murdered a figure beyond imagining -- 177 million people in the 20th century. But why?

Nietzsche claimed it was because of guilt. Guilt, he believed, was instilled in people before the age of reason. For all their vaunted belief in reason and science, there was still that guilt -- and no one to forgive them anymore. And that guilt led to self-hate and the hatred of others.

Yet, I wonder if Nietzsche was completely accurate in his observations. It seems to me the problem has been, more than anything else, the lack of guilt. What guilt did the Nazis and Communists ever feel about their genocide?

I believe the ancient Greeks and the Hebrews had a more accurate analysis. It's not guilt, as Nietzsche thought. It's something that has nothing to do with guilt, except the lack of it -- what the Greeks called Hubris, and the Bible, "pride."

During Nietzsche's time, when the educated ceased to believe, the only thing left for them in their nihilism was one of the greatest horrors ever: the worship of Man. Man will always worship something, even if it's, like Narcissus, himself.

This worship of Man as God is one of the main tenets of Leftism. And not surprisingly, the horrors of the 20th century were Leftist horrors. Nazism, Communism, Socialism, Fascism and Neo-conservativism -- all Leftist.

That witch's brew of Leftism is what led to the catastrophes of the 20th century -- the loss of religious faith (indeed the hatred of religion), the worship of man, race and nation as God (and the concomitant lack of guilt over what they do to others), and a gross misunderstanding and misapplication of science.

Naive science may say man is an animal, but every time man believes it, he has to turn himself into a god in order to deal with it. Otherwise, he will hate and despise himself -- and others. Yet when he sees himself as a god, he will hate and despise not himself, but others.

Blaise Pascal understood those points: "It is dangerous to prove to man too plainly how nearly he on a level with the brutes without showing him his greatness; it is also dangerous to show his greatness too clearly apart from his vileness. It is still more dangerous to leave him in ignorance of both. But it is of great advantage to show him both."

It is because of the conflating of nationalism with race that those outside of the nation become less then human, even non-human. That, along with the materialistic assumption that Man is little more than an animal who had meaninglessly evolved, led Nietzsche to write: "If the doctrines . . . of the lack of any cardinal distinction between man and animal . . . are hurled into the people for another generation . . . then nobody should be surprised when . . . brotherhoods with the aim of the robbery and exploitation of the non-brothers. . . will appear in the arena of the future."

In reality, humans are imperfect, but they are not merely animals. In religious terms, they are "fallen." But when man is seen as God, he has to be perfect. And the belief in that perfection of one's own self, or race, or nation is pure grandiosity. And "grandiosity" is just a modern term for Hubris and the overweening pride condemned in the Bible.

One of the reasons for the condemnation of grandiosity is that when one believes he is perfect, then there can be no guilt over what he does to others. If there are problems, they have to be someone else's fault. All problems -- all evil -- are projected onto another person, or race, or nation, or religion. The term for this is "scapegoating," which the psychiatrist M. Scott Peck correctly identified as "the genesis of human evil."

The scapegoater says, "I'm not the one with the problem. You are. And once I kill you, there will no problems in the world." I know it sounds like a simplistic explanation, but I do not believe it is. The Nazis said, "Once we get rid of those pesky Jews and Christians, our problems will be gone." The Communists echoed them with, "Once we get rid of these exploiting capitalists, our problems will be gone."

What will supposedly be left after the "evil" are eradicated? A perfect world. Yet, it never has worked, and never will. How can perfection come about through murder and destruction? Yet humanity never seems to learn this lesson -- it goes straight down the memory hole with every new generation.

Too bad Nietzsche is not around today. I wonder what he would make of the 21st century? I think he would see there are enough cracks in the false materialist and naturalist foundations of science to realize that it's no longer the Frankenstein's monster that it used to be. That's a good thing about science; it's self-correcting, even if it takes decades. Sometimes even centuries.

I think he would see something that might surprise even him: a century of religious warfare. One caused by the perversion of religion through Hubris.

Different religions, and moral codes, always agree there are three things needed for any society to be successful: don't murder, don't steal, and keep your word. When religion ceases to support those three things, it ceases to be true religion, and instead becomes perverted. That is one of the problems today.

Just as bad, and maybe even worse, is when religion becomes allied with the idol of the State. Then we get the grandiose "God and Country" (which is really "God and State"). The Nazis had their own term: "Gott mit uns." The Russian Communists: "Holy Mother Russia."

Since all States are based on the Political Means (stealing and murdering), all are, in religious terms, Satanic. This leads to the bizarre spectacle of those supporting "God and Country" (again, "God and State"), not realizing they're really saying "God and Satan."

This confusion is cleared up by the Commandment that reads, "You shall not use God's name for vain causes." It's the one that's almost always mistranslated as, "Don't take God's name in vain." It's got nothing to do with cussing.

Bush thought God has chosen him, and not only that, talked to him. That lead to him starting World War III, with the accompanying murder, destruction and theft, I would bet that if anyone talked to him, it was
the other guy.

Our enemies say the same thing: they have God on their side, and we are "the Great Satan." If I was the Devil, I'd be chuckling to myself, "I've got these fools unable to tell the difference between me and God!"

The problem is what I believe to be the basis of all crime: Hubris. God has chosen me. I am right and you are wrong. I am good and you are evil. We are going to kill you, or invade and "change" you. But Hubris, as the Greeks and the Bible both pointed out, is always followed by Nemesis. "Pride goes before destruction," goes the actual saying, "and a haughty spirit before a fall."

Those observations not only apply to individuals, but countries. It's why all empires have fallen. Even if they're convinced they won't.

Even if Nietzsche isn't around today, there are still enough prophets to see what is going to happen. Even if they don't have ferocious mustaches or towering foreheads.