Ignoble Savages and Tenured Apes
Noble Savages provides fascinating insight into the Stone Age savagery out of which civilization evolved, and the tenured savagery to which it has devolved.
I'm not sure which type of sadistic violence is more harrowing, that which takes place among the higher -- which is to say, pre-Chávez -- primates of Venezuela, or in the ivy-covered jungles of academia.
"When Napoleon Chagnon arrived in Venezuela’s Amazon region in 1964 to study the Yanomamö Indians, one of the last large tribal groups still living in isolation, he expected to find Rousseau’s 'noble savages,' so-called primitive people living contentedly in a pristine state of nature."
But "instead he discovered a remarkably violent society. Men who killed others had the most wives and offspring, their violence possibly giving them an evolutionary advantage.
"The prime reasons for their violence, Chagnon found, were to avenge deaths and, if possible, abduct women. He spent years living among the Yanomamö, observing their often tyrannical headmen, learning to survive under primitive and dangerous conditions" (Professor Backflap).
But in the archaic environment of academically correct cultural anthropology -- a malignant leftist fantasy world of crude neo-Marxism, soul-destroying deconstruction, tenured superstition, and hostility to science -- such observations, let alone conclusions, are Impermissible. Thus,
"When he published his observations, a firestorm of controversy swept through anthropology departments. Chagnon was vilified by other anthropologists, condemned by his professional association (which subsequently rescinded its reprimand), and ultimately forced to give up his fieldwork."
The one thing I can criticize Chagnon for is being more than a little naive about academia. You see, those tenured barbarians obviously evolved from the Stone Age ones. In fact, this is true of all of us. We all carry the prehistory of man, not just in our genes, but in our psyche (one way of looking at "original sin"). The more one is aware of this, the less likely is it to overwhelm us, either covertly exerting a malign influence or hijacking the ego altogether.
But the first thing that occurred to me in reading the chapters about the ordeal with his fellow anthropologists was that the latter were behaving exactly as the savages he had studied in the physical jungle: they were paranoid, vengeful, sadistic, and homicidal. They were out to kill -- no, not his body, but without question his ideas and his career.
Instead of doing anything -- up to and including murder -- to ensure the survival of their genes into the next generation, his credentialed assassins were willing to destroy a man -- to symbolically murder him -- so as to ensure the survival of their memes -- their precious ideas -- into the next generation of idiot college children. Same tune in a different key.
In fact, Chagnon became quite ill amidst the controversy, due to the stress of fending off these barbarians. I'm sure he would say that the incredible struggle of living in the jungle -- one time for 17 straight months -- was a cakewalk in comparison to having to deal with the violent barrage of tenured kooktalk.
For me, the more interesting question is why the left behaves in this way. Again, it is a truism in psychoanalysis that -- to express it as simply as possible -- we are composed of higher and lower selves, and that the lower can never be eliminated (because it's really one self that gets split in two for a variety of reasons). Rather, the task before us is to integrate it, hence the commonality I see between religiosity (especially the Judeo-Christian stream) and psychological development.
Indeed, for me, the Incarnation implies that Jesus truly embodies and integrates the complete human spectrum, from the lowest to the highest -- hence, for example, his easy interaction with prostitutes and even the IRS, not to mention the full post-Crucifixion descent into hell. Take the latter literally or figuratively, but the principle is the same: Jesus is a bridge spanning all degrees of human existence, rejecting none.
But we should never be surprised to find someone who pretends to be living on one of the higher rungs secretly living on a lower one. Take a Bill Clinton, who pretends to be adept at policy wonkery when he's really in it for the phallus wankery. Like the Yanomamö, it all comes down to accumulating women and avenging slights. If you should cross the Clintons, one way or another you will end up f*cked.
Sorry to leave you with that crude image, but this barbarian has to pretend to be civilized and get ready for work.