Tuesday, December 08, 2009

You Don't Need a Weatherman to Know They're Blowing Smoke Up Your Behind

The preferential selection of certain ideas which give a unity and a coherence to one's worldview, is, in itself a sign of intelligence, but if these ideas are defended to the extent of putting them beyond critical study by not allowing the most essential among them to be examined, we must suspect that there is in fact some 'sleight-of-hand' involved, possibly because of doubts as to whether the whole position would be defensible if openly stated. --Robert Bolton

Yesterday a drive-by troll urged readers to pay me no mind about the weathergate scandal, since I am not a scientist. True, I'd be the first to acknowledge that psychology is not a hard science. But it quite obviously intersects with science in an irreducibly complex manner, and the whole point about reality is that this is the rule, not the exception. The most interesting (and prevalent) systems are complex, non-linear, and hierarchical -- the mind itself being perhaps the quintessential example. To try to reduce mind to brain is a non-starter, at least for those of us not scarred by autism or tenure.

But to exclude neurology, biochemistry, and brain anatomy is equally daft. The problem, however, is not this seeming dualism. Rather, the problem is in our insistence that reality conform to our assumption -- whether scientistic or religiously nondualistic -- that it must be as simple as the tools we use to explore it.

Again, this is one of the fundamental errors of the scientific materialist, who confuses method with ontology -- as if what we know isn't limited and even defined by the way in which we study it. In point of fact, the scientific reductionist has no idea whatsoever how mind and brain interact. Rather, he just makes the problem go away by defining it out of existence -- by what Bion called premature closure of the psychic field.

Back briefly to yesterday's drive-by troll; no, I am not a scientist. But I am, conveniently, a forensic psychologist, so I've spent many years gleefully blowing the legs out from under attorneys and unscrupulous psychiatrists who try to defraud insurance companies by using the deductive method to prove that their client has sustained an "injury to the psyche."

In this deeply corrupt approach, the psychologist begins with the conclusion that their client has a mental condition, and then they retrospectively cherry pick "stressful" events from the workplace in order to support the contention that the mental condition was caused by work, or by whoever it is they happen to be suing.

In so doing, these hacks have no interest in gathering a serious history from the patient, since it will inevitably turn up other causes of their mental illness, and thereby threaten the source of their larcenous "funding." Nor do they undertake a serious analysis of psychological test data. Rather, all roads of inference lead to the Rome of cash and other valuable prizes.

It's frankly very similar to what so many defense attorneys do. That is, they begin with the conclusion that "my client is innocent," and then desperately try to impose a narrative in which this could be true. For example, all of that DNA can't belong to O.J. Simpson, because those gloves are too tight. Here we can see how a bogus empiricism -- hey, the gloves are a little snug! -- overrules a mountain of evidence and common sense.

It's the same with the gaia worshippers at Our Lady of Perpetual Climate Change. Temperature goes up? Global warming! Temperature goes down? Natural causes! In short, heads I win -- I am man of science -- tails you lose -- you are a science denier.

As Bolton says in another context, "the sense of standing on moral high ground is satisfying [to say nothing of lucrative] enough to discourage any attempts to look very closely at the validity of this position." This is a fine example of how the ego may merge with the superego to create an omnipotent "epistemological morality" that vaunts one's intelligence while sealing one's stupidity.

But again, this corrupt mode of moralistic thought pervades the left. Oppose racial quotas? Then you, sir, are a racist. Oppose socialized medicine? Then you are no better than apologists for slavery. Oppose the redefinition of marriage? Then you hate homosexuals. Question the settled science of climate change? Then you are a holocaust denier.

Now, what does this have to do with the book of esoteric theology we have been discussing, The One and the Many? Plenty. For starters, I would commend for your review Letter IX of Meditations on the Tarot, in which UF explains how Christian metaphysics reconciles the otherwise irresolvable philosophical antinomies of idealism <---> naturalism, philosophical realism <---> nominalism, and faith <---> empirical science.

(And if for some silly reason you don't have MOTT, see these three posts from last year: Herman's Hermits and Toots' Drawers, Naming the Nameless and Doing the Reality Dance, and Do I Dare Disturb the Obamaverse?)

Bottom line: when dealing with humans, it's always word and flesh, not either or. And when the flesh is as corrupt as the weathergate researchers, well, buddy... Not what goes into his melon defiles a man; but what comes out of his piehole, this defiles a man.

As Bolton writes, "The oracular and the irrational, if held with enough determination, thus lead inevitably to tyranny and violence, which is an additional reason why cultic thought like that of non-dualism should be critically examined." But again, please note that religious nondualism and scientistic monism converge in their denial of the ontologically real degrees of reality, i.e., the vertical plane of qualities.

And this is where the violence comes in, for scientistic or nondual monism can only be a complete account of man if great violence is done to man -- and therefore God -- which is to say, the totality of that which is.

35 Comments:

Anonymous slackosopher said...

In some form or other this is the conversation I've been having with pomo/nondual/lefty types since college. Still I find I am always purging myself of the disease.

Honestly it was so prevalent in college (esp. as I went to an artsy school) it was nearly impossible to avoid entirely--though I went for music which was relatively immune from postmodernism. Thankfully.

Of course it is sometimes nearly impossible to actually *have* an intelligent conversation with the pomo/nondualist, as they feel they can always slip out of any mere "logic" or need for "consistency" as a relic of a small mind. *sigh*

Occasionally I have made small headway and they might concede a point...but I find it rarely if ever sticks. The pull of pomo/nondualism is still too strong...perhaps because it does allow one to define anything however one wants-- and then call everyone *else* small minded who opposes them.

They so inconsistently feel they are on the side of a truth, that doesn't even exist. So odd!

It is telling that the most committed of these are so virulently anti-Christian (in a way they could never be in regards to other religions...even if they are anti-religious in general).

I have a few friends of this type who are also football fans. They cannot refrain from nasty, fairly extreme comment whenever a player reveals himself as a Christian. It borders on a mania. Definitely seems compulsive.

Anyway.

12/08/2009 09:00:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

"Back briefly to yesterday's drive-by troll; no, I am not a scientist. But I am, conveniently, a forensic psychologist, so I've spent many years gleefully blowing the legs out from under attorneys and unscrupulous psychiatrists who try to defraud insurance companies by using the deductive method to prove that their client has sustained an "injury to the psyche.""

Bob did not come to bring peace...

RR :-)

Talk about yer good news!
That's the sword we're talkin' about..

12/08/2009 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger walt said...

"...the problem is in our insistence that reality conform to our assumption..."

Yes, there's a lot of that going around! A regular pandemic! And it's likely that's another reason the Hermit kind of keeps to himself ....

12/08/2009 09:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Despite your professional experience, your understanding of legal procedures seems to be as shallow and misdirected as your understanding of science. What a shock, that an attorney should try to make the case for his client.

It's also no surprise that your psychological career should involve taking the side of large corporations vs. individual plaintiffs. You seem to be just the type, a friend to the bully and an enemy of the weak -- a true conservative.

12/08/2009 09:47:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

"It's also no surprise that your psychological career should involve taking the side of large corporations vs. individual plaintiffs."

Other way around. It's actually taking your side against liars and frauds who make everything more expensive for you. So you're welcome.

12/08/2009 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

Anon, if you would like a definition of "conservative", you should just ask a conservative for one. Don't make up your own. You just sound silly.

RR

12/08/2009 10:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Cousin Dupree said...

Especially because socialism is the system through which "the poor will get much poorer and a certain subset of the very rich will get much richer. The problem is that people are beginning to understand this: that Socialism is for the few, not the many" (Belmont Club).

12/08/2009 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

I can’t remember if it was St. Schumer or St. Durbin who asked Judge John Roberts during his SCJ confirmation hearings, but the dude asked him oh so smugishly, “If you are confirmed and become a Supreme Court Justice…will you be for the little guy?...or for the big guy?” (drool)

Anybody remember Roberts’ response?
I do.
Because I loved it.
And if libs had brains, they’d love it too.

RR

12/08/2009 10:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Or as the Torah wisely puts it, You shall not show partiality to a poor man in his dispute (Ex 23:3).

12/08/2009 10:30:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Speaking of bullies and the big government-big science-big media (or power-truth-money) complex, Climategate's Bullyboy Scientists.

12/08/2009 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Full disclosure: perhaps I should acknowledge that if Al Gore and the weather fairies are correct, there's a good chance that I'll have beach front property with a spectacular view of the ocean, since I'm a few miles inland from Malibu. Not to mention the flooding of Barbra Streisand's compound.

12/08/2009 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Beach Head said...

I mean, honestly. That’s what this is about, right? Extract billions from the little guys so The Babs can keep her perch?

Go GW. I’m about 2 miles or 30 feet from MSL, whichever comes first...

12/08/2009 11:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Cousin Dupree said...

Just the thought of the New York Times under the ocean puts a tingle in my thigh.

12/08/2009 11:51:00 AM  
Blogger Beach Head said...

Uncle!

12/08/2009 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Not what goes into his melon defiles a man; but what comes out of his piehole, this defiles a man.

Also,

By their fruitcakes shall ye know them.

That actually came to mind yesterday, after anony's first comment.

My own understanding of law is admittedly laughably poor, especially given DH's career. But one thing that has become clear to me is that large corporations, even sometimes when their owners/ CEOs are completely psychotic, can in fact do a great deal of good by providing jobs, goods and services that thousands or even millions of people desperately need.

One of his proudest moments as an associate was taking an active role in just such a situation: a corporation everyone's heard of was in bankruptcy, thanks in no small part to the crazy family that owned it. However, by coming up with a reasonable plan for recovery and essentially acting as a diplomat between debtor and lenders, his restructuring group were able to save the company. This left basically all parties better off than when they started, and if memory serves tens of thousands of ordinary people were able to keep their franchises and their jobs, wherein they provide convenient services that most everyone needs from time to time. Everybody wins.

But really, according to anony, that's evil because big corporations are "bullies and enemies of the weak."

12/08/2009 12:02:00 PM  
Blogger Mizz E said...

The social dominance of scientistically oriented spiritually deficient men is under attack.
MORE LEAKS - COPENHAGEN IN DISARRAY

12/08/2009 12:35:00 PM  
Blogger Warren said...

>> they feel they can always slip out of any mere "logic" or need for "consistency" as a relic of a small mind

Slack,

In the trade, it's officially known as "The Advaita Shuffle". But the more traditional term for it - "sophistry" - is still very serviceable as well.

>> It is telling that the most committed of these are so virulently anti-Christian

Oh, yeah. No accident there.

12/08/2009 01:39:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Oh, God help us: More stinky government cheese is being offered up on the platter of globull warming, er, "energy efficiency."

Never mind that the $12k is likely to be coming right back out of our own wallets, with interest (the money has to come from somewhere), aren't there still a lot of car dealerships who got completely shafted for going along with cash for clunkers? How the heck is this supposed to work, then? I bet in the microscopic print buried somewhere at the bottom of that brilliant proposal is the stipulation that actual funds may not be reimbursed until sometime after 2012.

From the article:

"Not only will [such legislation] increase our energy security and transform our energy infrastructure to a modern, clean and efficient one," Senate Energy Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., wrote in a recent op-ed column in the Hill, a Capitol Hill newspaper. "But it also will position the United States to lead in the development of clean energy technologies."

They have faith that if they just keep squeezing the people's stones, they're going to reap the water of an economic turnaround and the longed-for anthropogenic udopia. No matter how many times it's failed already.

12/08/2009 03:35:00 PM  
Anonymous slackosopher said...

Warren-

Sophistry seems exactly right. Both in the pejorative sense and philosophically in that "Man is the measure of all things" (or should I say "humanity" or is it "Womyn" is the measure of all things?). Which makes it impossible for them to account for their "morally superior" stance on just about everything.

How could any stance be superior if we are all our own measure?

This is a cognitive leap that they have not made or do not allow themselves to make.

The pomo/nondual is assumed as "true" (whatever that means) because they like the "results" that flow from it, not least of which is the ability to indulge nearly any behavior and be safe from "judgement" (which, to them, is a big no-no unless directed at Republicans and Christians--and if you are both! Watch out!).

The nondual is a very permissive "god" far less a moral source than justification of their own narcissism. Spiritual status seeking and display become paramount. It is not uncommon for such types to label themselves "very spiritual"...which seems to mean "more spiritual than you". oi.

The attempt to extract moral precepts from nonduality seems dodgy at best and most likely impossible...and I think that is *exactly* what is being sought after. What better way could their be than to live in a world of easy and meaningless sexual hookups and ego-display and get to call it "spirtual". The triumph of idiocy.

12/08/2009 03:49:00 PM  
Blogger Warren said...

Slack,

Agree. I once pointed out here that the entire materialist project is driven by nothing more exalted than the adolescent desire to indulge total sexual license without feeling guilt or having Daddy (God or the Church) sitting in judgement. That's pretty much all there is to it - lust and "Daddy issues". It's all very banal. (The usually placid scientistic jester - Ray - became quite defensive at this remark, so it apparently hit a nerve.)

All of the above remarks hold for materialism proper, as well as for "spiritual" materialism of the kind you're describing.

I used to know a Unitarian who was an atheist and materialist. He did not believe in purpose, meaning, free will, etc. But boy, would he ever bristle at any suggestion that he was not an extremely "spiritual" person! It was really too ridiculous.

12/08/2009 06:28:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

In point of fact, the scientific reductionist has no idea whatsoever how mind and brain interact. Rather, he just makes the problem go away by defining it out of existence -- by what Bion called premature closure of the psychic field."

Aye. They are, afterall, at war with Reality, seeking to impose (by force, if they are allowed) their own wishes and desires.

IRT AGW, I find it both sad and funny that anyone would have so much faith in "scientists" who can't even accurately predict the weather two weeks from now, let alone years and decades, using computer simulations (and incomplete data) that can't accurately predict the known history of climate, let alone the future, and has been demonstrably wrong at every turn.

Lefties are strongly attracted to grifters and will eagerly buy the snake oil they sell...especially with everyone elses money (although, clearly they don't see that they too will pay, far more than they think they will, and not just with money, but their very liberties).
That's an ongoing result when one denies Reality so vehemently.

Great post, Bob!

12/08/2009 11:28:00 PM  
Blogger Magnus Itland said...

I am not a climate change denier. I believe in the photographic evidence that Sahara is already shrinking. And just as we were about to build solar power plants there. It is all the Americans' fault as usual, no doubt.

wv:pipsible

12/09/2009 04:02:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

From Magnus' article,
"Images taken between 1982 and 2002 revealed extensive regreening.."

So...we have to look at 20 years worth of photos and climate models to detect this change, yet somehow we will not be able to react and adapt to it in time..hmmmm..

RR

12/09/2009 04:17:00 AM  
Blogger walt said...

RR worried:
"...yet somehow we will not be able to react and adapt to it in time..."

Rick, out here in the West there's a very old -- yet pertinent -- saying: "Ya gotta be fast!"

12/09/2009 05:05:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

Haaa!
Oh man, Walt, that hit the spot.

12/09/2009 05:08:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

The whole thing reminds me of that idiotic movie from a few years ago...Day after tomorrow, it was called, I think.
People were turning to solid ice in mid-stride trying to outrun the thing. I'm pretty sure it wasn't a comedy.

12/09/2009 05:11:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Who are you gonna believe, Al Gore or your own eyes?

12/09/2009 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

I believe there's a good chance he believes his own BS.

RR

12/09/2009 06:53:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Vanderleun eviscerates the poetry of Al Gore.

12/09/2009 07:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, your position is that global warming doesn't exist, but it's doing good things for the Sahara, so nyah-nyah-nyah you liberals and scientists. That makes a lot of sense.

The current effects of warming are most visible in the Arctice sea ice. This is alarming because of the positive feedback (a bad thing) due to the fact that open ocean absorbs a great deal of sunlight while ice reflects it back into space. So, the more the ice melts, the hotter it gets, and the more ice melts. If it gets hot enough, a second positive feedback cyle will result in the release of methane from melting of the Arctic permafrost, in which case we are truly fucked -- methane is a much more potent greenhouse gas than CO2.

12/09/2009 08:22:00 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

I'd start runnin if. I. were. you.

RR

12/09/2009 09:41:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

"You Don't Need a Weatherman to Know They're Blowing Smoke Up Your Behind"

True... but with a simple bureaucratic diagnosis,

"But Jackson's biggest applause line came when we said she was "proud" of the EPA's declaration Monday that greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare. "That is a decision that has been a long time coming," she said to a packed crowd in the U.S. Pavillion. "

you can call it a healthcontrol prescription, and order that you smile and bendover and then bill you for it.

(love that title though!)

12/09/2009 10:17:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

aninnymouse regurgitated "So, the more the ice melts, the hotter it gets, and the more ice melts."

Although from February, this is probably news to you,

"Eco-warriors and media hype aside, the fact is, as we head into 2009, that the world's ice mass has been expanding not contracting. Which will surprise evening news junkies fed a diet of polar bears floating about on ice floes and snow shelves falling into the oceans. But if a whole series of reports on ice growth in the Arctic, the Antarctic and among glaciers are right, then it is truth in the mainstream media (MSM) that's in meltdown not the polar ice caps. "

At the Oracle at Delphi, the Greeks had inscribed above it "Know Thyself" for those seeking guidance to take to heart before seeking after answers. The necessary transliteration of this for leftists approaching the Goracle, is "No thyself"... for they are true climate change deniers.

12/09/2009 10:46:00 AM  
Blogger Dougman said...

Minnesota-
"In more recent times, massive ice sheets at least one kilometer thick ravaged the landscape of the state and sculpted its current terrain.[10] The Wisconsin glaciation left 12,000 years ago.[10] These glaciers covered all of Minnesota except the far southeast, an area characterized by steep hills and streams that cut into the bedrock. This area is known as the Driftless Zone for its absence of glacial drift.[13] Much of the remainder of the state outside of the northeast has 50 feet (15 m) or more of glacial till left behind as the last glaciers retreated. Gigantic Lake Agassiz formed in the northwest 13,000 years ago. Its bed created the fertile Red River valley, and its outflow, glacial River Warren, carved the valley of the Minnesota River."

OHMYGOD! Gore-bull-warming stated sooner than we thought.
WE'RE ALL DOOMED!
HA-HA-HA

12/10/2009 01:15:00 AM  
Blogger Dougman said...

Death, by fertility!

12/10/2009 01:17:00 AM  

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