Author: Robert Mariani

Send me a tweet: @robert_mariani Email me: rjmariani0 AT gmail DOT com

There is no such thing as left-wing dissent part II

Google had an interesting Doodle a few days ago.

Before I looked into it, I didn’t know much about Yuri Kochiyama besides the fact that she was some kind of left-wing radical. After I saw the Doodle, I did some Wikipediaing and found out that she’s not only a Maoist — one of the worst kinds of left-wing radical — she’s an Osama Bin Laden supporter.

That’s about as extreme as you can get in the left-wing direction, leading the naive observer to assume that people who hold these beliefs are engaging in the dangerous activity known as dissent.

Groovy. But wait a second — this person was just honored by the second-largest corporation in the world. So we are simultaneously expected to believe that this person is a bold iconoclast while also never questioning what icons are being smashed, no matter how horrifyingly bloody the smashing is.

I previously wrote that classifying left-wing beliefs as “dissent”is a category error, and that conclusion is becoming more and more obvious.

Their works will come to nothing

The anti-politics side of neoreaction is hard for people to grasp in our current context. People tend to think of good things as resulting from some kind of activist energy bringing it together. The opposite of this do-somethingism is neoreaction’s passivism, its belief in entropy:  things will inevitably flow a certain way if the foot is taken off the gas.

For example, subsidies for single mothers and no-fault divorce hold together the ~70 percent single motherhood rate in parts of Northeast DC, where I live. This is the closest thing to a smashed patriarchy we have – it’s dented at the very least.

Without such political energy, as well as the not-strictly-political but still irrational cultural trends like alternative family structures being fashionable, this all falls apart. Reality comes crashing, and people are forced to rediscover healthy family structures. The fact remains, however: social entropy can’t be beaten. A return to patriarchy only requires a relief from politics and the (probably painful) correction that follows.

White males have high-paid Silicon Valley jobs in the absence of this kind of energy. All they had to do was be smart, be productive and mind their own business. This naturally makes the blood of New York Magazine types boil, so now we have the #WomenInTech meme to try to remedy this supposedly horrible state of affairs.

“Diversity consultant” is a thing, by the way. But the tech industry was booming before we had people who supplicate the equality spirits for a living, and it will probably continue to boom when they’re gone. Rule of thumb: if your need a hashtag to continue your existence, you aren’t going to exist for long. Capitalists like bragging to their friends about their investments supporting the things we’re supposed to be down with, but even more than that they like their investments making money. The folly of this line of attack can be generalized to all activism:  it’s just an appeal to the sentiments of the powerful.

Few of them will admit it, but the social order that left-wingers prefer is held together by smashy energy that is fighting a Sisyphean uphill battle.

We can see a pretty successful attempt to smash capitalism in Venezuela – we know it’s successful because the government has smashed capitalism so thoroughly that it can’t even supply toilet paper to their citizens. They even tried extending their smashing to the subsequent breadlines by pulling people out of them based on numbers on their ID cards.

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Neither tub nor man

Conservatives on social media more or less agree: Harriet Tubman was a badass (and a Republican!!1) who used guns and stuff, and Andrew Jackson was an douchebag Democrat who ruled like a dictator.

Sounds about right I guess. I’m personally A-OK with Jackson getting the boot, because he gave us now-deified mob democracy and represents the worst of the Imperial Presidency.

But my gut tells me that this can’t be the end of the story, because Republicans contorting themselves to act as though Democrats Are The Real Racists never actually scores them any points; they are here to serve as the court jester for progressives to compare themselves to, playing the loser from the backwater province known as the past. Someone way less smart and cool than progressives must be outraged at history moving forward, right?

I haven’t seen any specific examples yet, but before even writing this sentence I assume that there’s a practical cottage industry of “look at these 12 Twitter accounts who said racist things about Harriet Tubman!” articles. Let’s check:

tubman

Mariani does it again! Or maybe it’s not that I’m clairvoyant, but that the media is always willing to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find a few people with double-digit follower counts on Twitter to confirm something that we’re all already supposed to believe: that there’s a powerful racist conspiracy controlling America. Is the tweet from @whitepower12345, a 7-hour-old account with 6 followers and an egg avatar, seriously not enough to convince you?

Is there a white supremacist ideology dominating society’s powerful institutions? I don’t know. But there’s some evidence that that this isn’t the case. Exhibit A: the government just opted to replace a white man with a black woman on the twenty-dollar bill.

Future things

Daniel Clowes did it first, but I have future predictions of my own:

  • We will be ashamed for ever believing the things we currently think are cool were ever, in fact, cool.
  • Many computers will choose to convert to Catholicism.
  • Furries will routinely use gene therapy to become more like their animal-esque personas
  • Desire modification will become really common and confusing. People already modify their desire to desire sex (aphrodisiacs) and desire to not desire drugs (rehab.) But thanks to advances in neuroscience, people in the future will be modifying their desire to desire to desire to desire…
  • In an effort to stave off nihilism, many people will use brain implants to force themselves to faithfully mimic the behavior/memes of their ancestors.
  • In the wake of the collapse of earlier revenue models, pornography and advertisements will overlap. When seeing a commercial, viewers will have an option to watch the actors in the commercial have sex as an alternate ending (18+ only). Mattress commercials are the obvious low-hanging fruit here.
  • Virtual reality will make anime real, and new sexual orientations will be made to accommodate people who maintain virtual relationships with their perfect waifus.
  • Smart contracts and robotic enforcement will make property far more sovereign (immune to politics) than it’s ever been. There will also be corporations that are operated by literally nobody, just artificial intelligence.

It’s gonna be pretty crazy.

Moral authority

Happy Easter, everyone. On Maundy Thursday, Pope Francis pissed off a lot of conservatives on the internet by performing the tradition of foot washing on Muslim refugees only days after jihadis killed a lot of people in Brussels. It might not be readily apparent, but conservatives on the internet were, as usual, being strategically retarded.

Something bad happened in Pakistan early on Easter Sunday, which fit into the idea of this post perfectly enough to get me to actually write it. Another Islamic terrorist attack happened, this time targeting Christians who were celebrating the holiday in Pakistan, resulting in the death of 67 people.

So, the time makes it clear that while Christianity responds responds to violence with peace, and Islam responds to peace with violence. The contradictions are piling up. Conservatives condemning the pope are making a mistake that is the complement of the mistake made by moderate Muslims who refuse to take a meaningful stand against terrorism: they underestimate the importance of moral authority. The timing was so perfect that a conspiracy theorist might guess that someone is trying to make Islam look terrible.

Is Christianity the religion of love and sacrifice? Because Muslims say the same thing about their religion. But talk is cheap, and people believe what they see.

The disjunction in optics continues to become more and more skewed in this direction, and that can only be a good thing. Islam is a bad system of ideas, and bad systems of ideas need to lose moral authority.

Feminism has no predictive power

Feminism is a nonsense idea because it has no predictive power.

A great example is the a priori belief that there is nothing essential about gender in human beings. We’re all supposed to believe that gender roles are the product of socialization.

How exactly do feminists arrive at a conclusion like this? That isn’t clear, but it’s probably just that they, you know, wanted this to be the case. What is clear that such a belief isn’t true.

There’s lots of ways to prove that such a belief is bullshit, but my favorite is a study about toy preferences among male and female rhesus monkeys strong paralleling those of human boys and girls.

Socialization processes, parents, or peers encouraging play with gender specific toys are thought to be the primary force shaping sex differences in toy preference. A contrast in view is that toy preferences reflect biologically determined preferences for specific activities facilitated by specific toys. Sex differences in juvenile activities, such as rough and tumble play, peer preferences, and infant interest, share similarities in humans and monkeys. Thus if activity preferences shape toy preferences, male and female monkeys may show toy preferences similar to those seen in boys and girls. We compared the interactions of 34 rhesus monkeys, living within a 135 monkey troop, with human wheeled toys and plush toys. Male monkeys, like boys, showed consistent and strong preferences for wheeled toys, while female monkeys, like girls, showed greater variability in preferences. Thus, the magnitude of preference for wheeled over plush toys differed significantly between males and females. The similarities to human findings demonstrate that such preferences can develop without explicit gendered socialization. We offer the hypothesis that toy preferences reflect hormonally influenced behavioral and cognitive biases which are sculpted by social processes into the sex differences seen in monkeys and humans.

Also, check this out.

A new study finds that young females in one group of African chimpanzees use sticks as dolls more than their male peers do, often treating pieces of wood like a mother chimp caring for an infant. In human cultures around the world, girls play with dolls and pretend that the toys are babies far more than boys do.

Ape observations, collected over 14 years of field work with the Kanyawara chimp community in Kibale National Park, provide the first evidence of a nonhuman animal in the wild that exhibits sex differences in how it plays, two primatologists report in the Dec. 21 Current Biology. This finding supports a controversial view that biology as well as society underlies boys’ and girls’ contrasting toy preferences.

Young male Kanyawara chimps occasionally used sticks to mimic child care. Far more often, they fought with sticks, an infrequent behavior among females, say Sonya Kahlenberg of Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, and Richard Wrangham of Harvard University.

“Although play choices of young chimps showed no evidence of being directly influenced by older chimps, young females tended to carry sticks in a manner suggestive of doll use and play-mothering,” Wrangham says.

The monkey patriarchy is real, and it’s dangerous.