Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Putting the "Psycho" in Psychoblogging

As you know, there are a number of fine conservative or old-fashioned liberal psychobloggers out there, such as Dr. Sanity, ShrinkWrapped, Neo-neocon, Assistant Village Idiot, and Sigmund, Carl and Alfred. In fact, ever since I started blogging last year, I’ve been looking for a leftist psychoblogger to ridicule when I don’t have anything else to write about, but couldn’t find any.

It is somewhat surprising that there aren’t more moonbat psychobloggers, since the vast majority of my colleagues are default leftists. Most of them know nothing at all about economics, political philosophy, or theology, but this hardly stops them from having strong opinions. But their opinions simply mirror the drearily predictable leftist subculture in which they were indoctrinated. Not only do you know all of their opinions ahead of time, but they are almost always felt and not thought. This is not surprising, as most people who study psychology are more irrational “feeling types.” Intellectually deep psychiatrists and psychologists are somewhat few and far between.

This morning I found a leftist psychoblog linked to dailykos, Psyche, Science, and Society, run by psychoanalyst Steven Soldz. It is a goldmine of leftist foolishness, cant, and cliché, and you understand in a second why this man would be linked to the breathtakingly infantile dailykos. This blogger vividly demonstrates the axiom that education has nothing to do with wisdom. More often than not, the two are inversely related.

In his “about me” page, Soldz sets the tone, making reference to how the American public has “rallied around a mythic ‘war on terror’” which “is built on a simplistic duality of good versus evil.” In other words, the terrorists are not actually evil. Rather, it is just that we have projected all of our “undesirable characteristics” into the so-called “evil” other. Evidently, it is we who actually want to chop their heads off and murder their children just for the hell of it.

This arrogant moral equation is so amazingly simplistic that one hardly knows where to begin. First of all, it reflects the boilerplate leftist idea that evil does not actually exist. Rather, there is only “so-called evil”; there are only “undesirable characteristics” that we project into others. Apparently, people who project evil are evil, but evil behavior isn’t. So Americans are evil projectors, but the terrorists who slashed the throats of stewardesses and flew airplanes into the Twin towers were not evil. No, it’s just our projection.

If that is true, one wonders why Dr. Soldz focuses only on our so-called projection of evil into the terrorists, but not on their projection of evil into us. After all, they started it. I promise to stop thinking they're evil if they promise to stop trying to kill me. (By the way, you'd think Soldz might take a bit more offense at the idea that the terrorists also want to kill him merely for believing in "Jewish psychoanalysis." After all, they're not going to give him a pass just because he appeases evil. In fact, they probably won't even extend the professional courtesy of killing him last.)

Soldz rhetorically asks “Why does this trick [of projection] work? Why are people willing to put their critical faculties to sleep and line up behind their side in the ‘clash of civilizations?’ Ah, there’s the question! Simplistic answers won’t do.” But what could be more simplistic than believing evil only exists in the mind of the person who perceives it, or that there is really no clash of values between Western civilization and whose who openly wish to destroy it? Talk about somnolent critical faculties. Soldz does not have to project. His overwhelming denial of reality makes it redundant.

Amazingly, Dr. Soldz welcomes the launch of al Jazeera in America, stating that “I, for one, wish them well. I hope they will continue offending the powers-that-be by telling the truths that others suppress.” In other words, Dr. Soldz not only aligns himself with this invaluable propaganda tool of our terrorist enemies, but regards it as a courageous conveyer of suppressed truth. No, people aren’t offended by al Jazeera because -- like virtually all of the Arab Muslim world -- they are steeped in vile lies about America and Israel. Rather, they are offended because they do not want to hear the suppressed “truth” about Jewish conspiracies and genocidal Americans.

This man is beyond simplistic. He is beyond ignorant. He is even beyond stupid. I have no compunction whatsoever in saying that he is, at the very least, a moral imbecile.

Speaking of which, his views on religion betray a level of hermetically sealed ignorance that is truly astonishing. He muses that “As we ponder the spectacle of America legalizing torture, some wonder why the religious community doesn’t come out gung ho against torture.” He notes what should be a truism, that the more religiously inclined actually “support torture in some cases,” while “secular people have the lowest rate of support.”

Naturally, like all lying, agenda-driven leftists, Dr. Soldz willfully and misleadingly conflates torture with any number of techniques that do not deserve the term. But even then, what moral person would not waterboard a known terrorist to try to stop a massive terror plot? Thousands of people are only alive today because these techniques worked on people such as the number three man in al Qaeda, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. Soldz would rather see thousands of innocents murdered than to have frightened this poor beast of depravity into telling us what he knew about active terror plots. Our moral compasses are obviously quite different. I think his is broken.

In a stunningly ignorant statement, Dr. Soldz opines that “One might hypothesize from these data that religion fosters barbarism and that Secularism fosters humanism. Of course, a psychoanalyst might wonder if religion, rather, was a defense against one’s barbarous tendencies. If so, the people attracted to religion may have more brutal impulses evan than are here suggested.” Brilliant insight, Doc! This would explain the humanism of secular and atheistic societies such as Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, Castro's Cuba, and Mao’s China. And it would explain the barbarism of Mormons, the Dalai Lama, Quakers, and those genocidal Amish.

However, “Another possibility is that religious people are more likely to trust authority, such that they believe the authorities know what they are doing when they torture. If this view is true, one might conclude that religion is antithetical to democracy.” Right. Like most so-called “intellectuals,” Dr. Soldz won’t allow reality to interfere with a good theory. Never mind that the greatest democracy the world has ever known, the United States, is also the most religious, or that the most authoritarian and totalitarian places have been the most secular.

Like that other brilliant intellect, Dr. Elton John, Dr. Soldz proclaims that “At a minimum” we have “no reason to believe that the world would be a better place if people were more religious. But, given the state of the world, I can’t imagine anyone seriously arguing that, anyway. Can you?”

Who, me? Gee... let me think a minute...

Just imagine the vacuity of of this man’s impoverished imagination. Dr. Soldz cannot even imagine anyone seriously arguing that religion has any beneficial effect. No, he says -- un-ironically echoing the words of that beacon of morality, Karl Marx -- it is just an “opium that deadens the moral sense.” Indeed “We all know” -- yes, all of us who have received an authoritarian secular brainwashing via graduate school -- that “there are plenty of Christian and Jewish killers too. Is there any evidence that religion has a net positive effect in the world? Perhaps the amount of killing would decline if we had more atheists? I can’t see any contrary evidence.”

No contrary evidence. None!

Imagine the mentality of someone who “cannot see” the 200 million souls murdered in the 20th century as a direct result of atheistic ideologies. They are “invisible” because they do not fit into the twisted template of his ignorance and bigotry. What an imbecile.

But on the positive side, I now have a ready source of inspiration when there’s nothing else to write about.


Anonymous said...

Geeze, Bob. Nothing like going up to a bully and knocking the chip off his shoulder. LOL!

This oughta be a pay-per-view quality boxing match.

*goes to get the popcorn*

Anonymous said...

You beat me to it, Joan. Wait for the expected re-butt-al.


Anonymous said...


Correction -- them shoulders be too spindly to support a chip.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's just nice to see someone putting their pent-up aggression to good use. I almost feel sorry for whomever takes the bait.

It's not like we've been getting any quality trolls around here lately. Spindly shoulders or not, hopefully there will be something of substance to gnaw on.

Trawling for Trolls. A new blog-sport for those not afraid to scrape the bottom of the dismal sea of insanity that is the loony Left.

Tusar Nath Mohapatra said...

[ alan kazlev Says:

November 28th, 2006 at 6:30 am Re the blog comment:(Will said)
The process of transforming the body is literally “unnatural” - it’s an “upward” pull in a gravitationally “downward” pull world.

I strongly disagree, I think it is the basic principle of evolution; it is not “unnatural”, but a “natural” and central aspect of an evolutionary cosmos such as ours.

“Of course, a transforming material reality would involve considerable disturbance, just as a transforming physical body does. You know, disturbances like climate changes, quakes, tsunamis, etc. ”

I think all this New Age sensationalism about Earth Changes and so on is misleading and incorrect. Regardless of humanity’s idiotic and short-sighted actions in relation to the exploitation of the natural world, it’s important to let go of this misleading “old age’ thinking about apocalypse and so on. That sort of attitude is tied up with people’s feelings of guilt and negativity, and a morbid love of death and destruction (notice how the news is always bad? Uplifting stories are very rarely reported, giving a very juandiced and negative view of teh world. And there are TV shows about “air traffic disasters”, but never about all those planes (the vast majority) taht don’t crash and are noit hijacked. And Hollywood movies are so often about disasters, crime, horror, etc). It is also imho an insult to the natural world to assume that it is not capable of receiving the higher light but has to be purged through catastrophes and disasters. But it fits in with these exoteric religions that are obsessed with punishment and suffering, rather than with joy and delight.

It’s not suffering and negativity and morbity that will bring about a new creation, but light and joy and true and selfless activity in harmony with the larger Whole. ]

Anonymous said...

Aw, Tusar, that's so sweet!

Do you ever clip your toenails? Or do you just let them delight in the light and harmony and selfless abandon of their growth?

Seriously, what do you do when they are not in harmony with the larger Whole?

Anonymous said...

Presumably, when someone in your profession uses the phrase "moronic imbecile", it carries more weight than when I use it, but I'm pretty sure we mean it in the same way. In addition, I consider such folks to be "actually dangerous". It seems to me that what-is-called the leftwing agenda has so spread into the culture and the political infrastructure of this country as to make it nearly unrecognizable, when I closely examine it. This is what I mean by "dangerous". But they say that you're not paranoid if people are actually out to get you.

Anonymous said...

Bob, I had the impression you were going to post a continuation of your discussion on the gradiations of the cosmos (including that intriguing allusion to "two levels below matter"). You had written "more on the seven levels tommorrow!"

Why the sudden switch in topic matter? This has left me feeling jarred and yes, a little disappointed.

Iggy Bliss said...

Dr. Soldz reads like an evil character in C.S. Lewis' "That Hideous Strength".

In fact - looking at the world recently has me thinking about that book more and more. I might just dig up my old copy for a re-read.

Bob, you certainly gave him both barrels. Funny...I didn't feel at all bad for him.

[Heh, my comment 'word verification' is "FFOUL". Fits]

Sal said...

Wonderful, Bob!
Not really OT -

Mimi wants well-armed grandchildren for the civilizational clash. So, input on good Western Civ Christmas gifts, please.

For a smart almost five girl.

So far, we're reading:
Mother Goose
a little Grimm
Kid's poetry

Boss has returned, more later...

Anonymous said...


I'll have to chime in with those who find the sudden change of topic jarring. I too was really looking forward to your continuing discussion on levels. But if you woke up grumpy and felt a desire to unleash on a hapless and pitiable lefty, then by all means have at it and we'll just grab the popcorn for now. ;)

Anonymous said...

NoMo here - I came to conclude some time ago that "liberalism", for lack of a better term, is not simply an intellectual / moral alternative, but an honest to goodness mental disorder. As you illustrated yet again today, it goes way deep and affects every aspect of the afflicted's being. Is "mental disorder" an honest conclusion? And, if so Doc, what is the treatment? Is there a cure?

Having graduated from liberal arts in the early 70s, I was well on my way there myself. I know what cured me, but is there a secular way to one.

Anonymous said...

GK Chesterton said something that I filed away years ago in my mental trivia drawer - "The world is not evil; it is full of wild and wasted virtues."

He makes an excellent point about motive and intent. Any fanatical type including Soldz, Dawkins, Islamofascists in general, too many politicians, and even misguided fundamentalist Christians (e.g. Fred Phelps, who IMHO isn't really a Christian at all) would obviously be offended by being called evil. "Who, me?! I'm trying to make the world a better place!" Instead, they see themselves as possessing a far higher virtue than others; therefore they must, as a civil duty, spread their wisdom through the rabble as far and wide as possible, by words or even exploding ticket-to-heaven devices when necessary. The result is often great evil, the opposite of their intent. So what is evil then? Although true primal malevolence certainly does exist, the most damaging seems to be more of a perverted result or consequence than a force in itself.

So a question then, on a personal level, is how can a person be sure he/she is culturing real Virtue into actionable and effective goodness rather than the opposite? That may be a no-brainer in this little sanctuary, but a whole lot of folks don't seem to get it. Opinions?

ximeze said...

Beaky, Simon(tuxedo cat) & I read with great relish today's post. Way to go Doc!

Simon says that he enjoys the analytical & clarifying stuff, but does need a good snort sometimes & a scratching post is good for his nails.

The three of us discussed the change in "promised topic" & concluded: 1)whatever GB cares to share with us is just fine, 2)this gives us a chance to reread & absorb prior posts, 3)if/when he gets back to a topic, likely it will reappear transformed for the better & 4)digestion between meals is a good thing.

Oh, a troll this...
Beaky, who is an excellent judge of human character, says she thinks you are a legend in your own mind and a bore, but she is willing to get to know you more closely with her mandible.

Anonymous said...

Off topic because I just found it: I think our One Cosmos Theme Song rocks!! We used to sing Amazing Grace to that same tune. Try it! You'll thank me later.

And Cuz Dupree, if anyone takes the troll-bait, can we count on you to call their attention to the especially visceral parts of the field manual for applied medieval science and punishment?

MikeZ said...

It didn't take him long to return fire. But such large rounds! Such withering repartee.

Also interesting that both Soldz and Gagdad Bob have "resigned" from the APA - Bob because it has been taken over by the Left (as nearly as I can remember his comment), and Soldz, because it has been taken over by the right (the torturers at Guantanamo).

His "About Me" page is actually called "About Us" - evidently one of the few remaining uses of the Royal We (e.g., Queen Victoria's famous comment, "We are not amused".)

Gagdad Bob said...

George, Brian--

Sorry to disapppoint you, but I can't write to order. Whatever comes down, comes down.

DK said...

You see, I was discussing pacifism with a friend once. I tried to explain that while nonviolent solutions are generally preferred, they are not always realistic. He took the stance that there is always a nonviolent solution because reason would eventually prevail. I guess this mindset comes from those who have never met a TRULY unreasonable individual. Yes Virginia, there are people who will kill you to get their way.

I think back, Bob, to your idea of language and the cosmos being a sort of language. For some, violence is language. It's hard for a reasonable person to accept that there are unreasonable people in the world. It's also hard for an unreasonable person to accept that solutions can be found in reason and understanding. Some only understand fighting, so we have to speak their language.

In some ways, it's also an issue of economics. What is freedom worth? What is worth fighting for? It's sad that today's left forgets that the very freedoms they enjoy (and are willing to throw away to the terrorists) were bought with the blood of men and women. This country (the US) is soaked in the blood of men and women who thought freedom was a worthy enough cause to lay down their lives for. Today's leftist isn't even will to stand up to tyrants and killers and say something unkind.

Blood is an expensive currency. However, the folks who decided to run some planes into our buildings upped the ante.

So there are two conflicting views in the way I see it:

Peace at any cost
Freedom isn't free

Ultimately the left wants to sell peace at the cost of freedom.

I hope that made sense, I kinda started to rant there for a minute.

Anonymous said...

Excellent expose, Bob!
Soldz is a poster boy for Delusional (big "D").

I saw a leftist/new age psychologist once.
It didn't work out.
She annoyed me, but she was the one who refused to see me again.
She said I was too unteachable and closed-minded.
Her Code words for Christian and conservative I guess. Heh! Eh?! What?!
After seeing her a few times, I actually felt more self-confident and capable of dealing with my unteachable closed-mind.
It can always be worse, I thought.

Anonymous said...

"...there is always a nonviolent solution because reason will eventually prevail."

dk, when confronted with that sort of argument, I have been very tempted to just shove the person after they make that statement. Maybe a quick jab in the solarplexus. Then keep doing it. If they make an appeal to reason, or offer to pay, immediately agree, then punch them again. Keep pushing and punching until they decide that it's worth taking a swing of their own in self-defense. Maybe knock a little sense into them along the way...

Anonymous said...

Let the games begin!

Anonymous said...

NoMo -

Paul G, I've tried that and it works! For some strange reason this discussion reminds me of a favorite Firesign Theater phrase, "We too want peace...of Nigeria."

Anonymous said...

This is funny.
Dr? Soldz says he has modest readership, which is a overstatement, because I saw one, only one comment out of several.
And that comment wasn't supportive of Dr? Soldz's irrational pacifileftist idea's.
He doesn't even attempt to debate Bob or address anything Bob says.
"A man's gotta know his limitations", a famous actor once said.
Dr? Soldz has certainly founded his.
As Bob said in a prior post:
"He's so wrong he's not even wrong".

Robert Pearson said...

I went and checked it out, and there was his non-response response...I left a comment commiserating with the gentleman over his obvious unhappiness with Reality.

I hope, Gagdad, that you don't mind my telling him that your life is a happy one because you aren't Horizontal Man.

Anonymous said...

The Royal We
Used to share in the credit for something you have no right to or to spread the blame for something only you are at fault for.

River Cocytus said...

I actually feel sympathy for Soldz, Bob. Not that it makes his irrationality okay; it's just a sort of empathic reaction. I know none of us 'round here are actual 'big' guys, like the 'blogfather' or whatnot... and I guess the rising hero has to level a few chumps on the way up ;)

Of course, this might explain why there are few psychologist-bloggers on the left. (To the extent that what he is saying, albeit in psychological terms, is identical to what kos et al say in political terms.)

It would be like you writing k stories only-- we already have a Lileks.

I'm really looking forward to your 'seven levels' thing.

Anonymous said...

Were we to recommend 8th levelling to Dr. S, we would suggest Karamazov. Us being Brothers and all.

Anonymous said...

Lessee if I can sneak one in (please).
Dreams, they aren't just for breakfast anymore.
This was a preliminary O--k experience.
One po' boy's rejection of "something better." Are you listening, Charles Rangell, you ass?

I wanted to be a hero. Not for glory, because I never craved notoriety, or being famous.
No, this was about honor.
I was jubilant about joining the Navy, because I was determined to accomplish something by myself. To attain honor...true honor, not that crap that those terrorist psychopaths call honor.
I knew honor was about protecting in a selfless way.
Integrity, doing the right thing, loyalty, truth, justice and the American way.
Yes, perhaps I read too many comics when I was a kid, and watched too many John Wayne movies.
But my Grandpa (a retired sheriff's deputy, among many things) taught me that honor is many things, all good, and sacred.
It was a code to live by; to do and be.
I didn't fully comprehend, but that's what I wanted to be: a man of honor.
But my joy would soon turn to hurt and and deep sorrow.
A man I had deep respect for, my history teacher in junior high school who taught me chess, and a love for history, had plans for me that I was unaware of.
He thought I was a chess prodigy (but I knew I wasn't).
He had contacted my Mom, asking if I could stay with him and his lovely wife, knowing about my problems at home, and he intended to send me to college on his dime, and coach me in chess, as far as I could go.
My Mom said yes, and he was jubilant about this.
He told me about this generous offer, before I could mention the Navy.
When I told him I joined the Navy his joy was replaced by shock.
He asked for my Recruiters number, and said he would be back.
I was in the delayed entry program (DEP),and had a few months before I had to report to the Naval Training Center (NTC) San Diego, CA.
When he returned he says, "Don't worry, I took care of it and you don't have to go. The Recruiter said you could cancel, since you haven't taken the oath yet. I'll take you there tomorrow so you can sign some papers."
Now I was shocked.
What do I do?
Coach's offer is so generous, and very tempting.
"Coach, I really need to do this.
I really appreciate all you have done, but I need to do this" I said, trying to convey why I had to do this with my eyes.
"But Ben, look, at least go to college, and if you still want to join the Navy you can be an Officer. This is the best opportunity for you at this time.
You don't want to rush into something you'll regret," my Coach said, sincerely I might add.
"I'm sorry Coach.
This is something I have to do.
I have waited for this and I thought about it and prayed for a long time.
I have to do this, but I'll write.
We can play postal chess." says I, hesitantly, because Coach was turning red, and I knew he was hurt, and upset.
"Fine!" he shouted, and walked briskly out of the room.
Coach was like a father, a teacher, a friend. It felt like a punch to the gut seeing him hurt.
I tried to talk to him again, but he had closed himself off.
He had nothing more to say.
I was devastated. Why was ths happening?
To this day he has never returned a letter, but his wife sends Holiday cards without anything personal to say.
It still hurts a bit, because I know Coach wanted the best for me, and in his mind I had basically told him to pack sand and stay out of my life.
I rejected his love for me.
But that was not what I intended at all, and I wasn't rejecting our bond.
I felt horrible, but I could not back out of my preliminary committment to the Navy.
That would be dishonorable.
I sure didn't feel honorable at that time.
But I knew...I KNEW I couldn't break my word, and I didn't want to.
I hurt, but I knew I was right.
God forgive me, I prayed.

River Cocytus said...

ben: Man, its like the phone conversation I have with my brother every other week.

My brother: *harassing statement/currently impossible request*

Me: *wry/shocked rebuttal*

My brother: *never talking to me again*

Until the next time he needs something. I don't know what it is... the never talking to someone again? It takes some crazy unforgiveness, doesn't it? I've never been able to do it. So I stopped promising I would.

Ah, the depths of the knowledge of God...

Van Harvey said...

Paul G said..."when confronted with that sort of argument, I have been very tempted to just shove the person after they make that statement."

LOL! Can't tell you how much I like that!

Regarding Quackter Soldz, isn't it just a little dissapointing when the looming shadow turns out to be cast by a sock puppet when the lights come on?

Anonymous said...

Why flip burgers when you can be a new age psychoanalyst like Steven Soldz?

Anonymous said...

Ben, thanks for continuing with your story. Your coach sounds like an interesting fellow. It's too bad he couldn't accept that you had to make your own decision about where your life was headed. I was in a similar place with my dad at that age - he wanted me to attend a state college near where my uncle lived (so I could stay with relatives instead of paying for a dorm, and still be relatively close). Instead I went to a private school across the country. His bitterness about my choice combined with his anger at my mom eventually led to us not speaking for several years (my choice - I wanted an apology he didn't know how to give). I finally let it go when my sister got married. We talked and he apologized, and we get along fine now. However, if he hadn't been family but rather a father figure like your coach, I probably would have regretfully moved on, as you did.

Anonymous said...

I wonder who the psychos really are?
Have you really looked in the mirror lately.
Meanwhile please check out this reference on the psychosis of the Reagan years.

sarah said...

Ben, I am so sorry that happened to you. Thanks for telling us the story.

My reaction is two-fold.

First, Coach clearly did not love you as much as he thought he did, for if he had, he would have had more respect for your decision, or at least he would have had glimmers in that direction, such as making a sincere attempt to understand. (That's not a criticism of him; he may have loved you as much as he could.)

Second, in my view, the fact that there was some love between you means that there is always hope for that love to blossom anew. I hope you have been able to continue to love him in some way, despite the pain of this experience, and I hope -- for his sake as much as yours -- that he will find his way to the wellspring of Love so that he may renew what might have been, and perhaps could still be, an important relationship. He has much to learn from you; my wish for you both is that this may someday manifest.

My very best,

Anonymous said...

A very evil article, Bob! Do you write to impress yourself and others, or to "find the truth"?

You seem somehow to relish the thought that your readers might be inspired by you in some way --let dog taste blood-- is that why you write nasty ad hominems like this, Bob?

You write well, in a technical sense, but so what? There's a soulless and dead quality to your verbal acrobatics. -Are you heartless, or is it that you just seem to be so?

Why not discuss & analyse ideas instead of attacking people?

Why not write with your heart and mind integrated? -It can be done, you know!

Gagdad Bob said...

Well, duh!

Of course I'm evil, soulless, and dead, and write to impress myself and others. You must think it's easy to integrate vacuity and hysteria in the manner you do.