Friday, September 21, 2018

Trial by Ordeal and Ordeal by Trial

Regarding the malignant spectacle to which the left has been subjecting us this week (and what is the left itself but a malignant spectacle?), it is a perfect exemplification of Schuon's solid gold maxim:

In reality, man has the right to be legitimately traumatized only by monstrosities; he who is traumatized by less is himself a monster.

This is precisely the dynamic that is playing out this week. To imagine that being groped in high school is a legitimate trauma is to not know what trauma is. Not to say it wasn't unpleasant, but words have meanings.

I see this all the time in my clinical practice, and the maxim has never failed: people who claim to be traumatized by the less-than-traumatic inevitably turn out to be self-centered, narcissistic, weak, hysterical, melodramatic, and of generally low character. They imagine they are being bullied ("Dr. Ford won't be bullied into testifying!") when they are the bullies.

It's breathtaking, really. Imagine slandering a man 36 years after the fact, and insisting that he defend himself against the charge before he even knows exactly what it is! It makes Kafka's The Trial look fair by comparison. Here's how it begins, with a bit of light editing consisting of a single word (Brett instead of Josef):

Someone must have slandered Brett K., for one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was arrested.

A few paragraphs later:

"You can't leave, you're being held." "So it appears," said K. "But why?" "We weren't sent to tell you that. Go to your room and wait. Proceedings are underway and you'll learn everything in due course."

In the present case, Brett K. actually survived the legal proceedings. Hence Plan B, the extralegal ones:

"How can I be under arrest? And in this manner?" "Now there you go again.... We don't answer such questions." "You're going to have to answer them," said K. "Here are my papers, now show me yours, starting with the arrest warrant."

Show me yours. Nah. What do you think this is, America? You testify first, then we'll let you know what you're being charged with. "But that's not justice!" That is correct. It is social justice, good and hard.

My recollection is that the book goes on in this vein for a few hundred pages, with no resolution (nor did Kafka actually complete the book in his lifetime). Let's cut to the chase and find out how K.'s ordeal-by-trial ends. A figure appears before him:

Who was it? A friend? A good man? Someone who sympathized? Someone who wanted to help? Was it one person only? Or was it mankind? Was help at hand? Were there arguments in his favor that had been overlooked? Of course there must be.... Where was the Judge whom he had never seen? Where was the High Court, to which he had never penetrated? He raised his hands and spread out his fingers.

But the hands of one of the partners were already around K.'s throat, while the other thrust a knife deep into his heart and turned it there twice. With failing eyes K. could still see the two of them immediately before him, cheek against cheek, watching the final act. "Like a dog!" he [K] said; it was as if the shame of it must outlive him (emphasis mine).

That is definitely the operative phrase, because we already know the left's machinations are designed so that the shame of the accusation will outlive the proceedings (as in the case of Clarence Thomas). Indeed, Democrats are already gearing up to impeach Herr K. once they take control of congress in January.

And now I'm almost out of time for the real post! Again, we're on the subject of Beginnings -- beginnings of everything, from interior to exterior, vertical to horizontal. Hayek begins his introduction with a comment by historian Guglielmo Ferrero, that "there seems to be only one solution to the problem: that the elite of mankind acquire a consciousness of the limitation of the human mind..."

This brings to mind something I heard from Ginator Sillibrand yesterday, that she believes Professor Ford. Why does she believe her? Because she's telling the truth. That's not circular logic. That's unalloyed female logic, as any mature conservative woman knows.

First of all, like anyone could know that. But that's just a tiny example of ignorance-of-ignorance in action. If Hayek is correct, then ignorance of ignorance may be man's deepest and most persistent problem, perhaps even worse than knowledge of what is untrue.

After all, science for example, in the ultimate sense, is always "knowledge of what is untrue." It operates via the principle of falsification, such that it eliminates errors without arriving at an unchanging positive truth. In the words of the Aphorist, Being only falsifiable, a scientific thesis is never certain but is merely current. So long as we bear this in mind, then we are respecting the limits of science.

Nevertheless, Each one of a science’s successive orthodoxies appears to be the definitive truth to its disciple, the dim ones, anyway.

I apologize for wasting so much time on the circus, because now I'm out of it. Perhaps that is part of the left's strategy: to cause us to waste all our time and energy in defense of the obvious.


Gagdad Bob said...

Oops: when you think you're going to get liberal female logic, but get logic instead.

julie said...

I apologize for wasting so much time on the circus, because now I'm out of it. Perhaps that is part of the left's strategy: to cause us to waste all our time and energy in defense of the obvious.

Yes, I think you're right about that. As someone pointed out about one of the recent occasions where the NYSlimes put out a blatantly false article, only to "retract" it within an hour, the damage had been done. They had created a false narrative which would be parroted around the world, while few would bother to look for the retraction. Even just wasting energy refuting the obviously false feeds into the falsehood, and while the decent are thus distracted, worse deeds by the liars are given cover.

Fake news: Kavanaugh might have tried to get to second base as a teenager. *Reeeeee!!! OMG we can never have a creep like that sitting in a position of power!!11!!!! Reeeee!!!*

Real news: Ellison beat his girlfriend. There are police reports, photos, dates and times to back it up. *Crickets.*

julie said...

Also, just had a discussion with another good point re. K, the false freakout gives rinos who oppose him cover for voting against him as the election comes up. "Oh, we wanted to approve the nomination, but how can we when he might have once made a pass at a girl at a party?!?"

julie said...

Good summary of the truly kafka-esque situation here:

Gagdad Bob said...

About that first comment: it is indeed a stretch to imagine that some kid who merely wants to cop a feel actually intends to rape you!

Hysteria is a real thing. It's how the unconscious mind was formally discovered.

Gagdad Bob said...

Hysteria "means ungovernable emotional excess."

"The rate of hysteria was so high in the socially restrictive industrial era that women were prone to carrying smelling salts about their person in case they swooned, reminiscent of Hippocrates’ theory of smells coercing the uterus back into place."

Gagdad Bob said...

Sometimes I think the true test of conservative womanhood is a desire to repeal the 19th amendment.

julie said...

It's a sad commentary on womanhood that if we didn't have the vote, everyone would be better off. We thought we were gaining a voting bloc made of mature women with a motherly wisdom and sensibility; a century later, and instead we have rule by child-hating trigglypuffs.

Gagdad Bob said...

I'm quite sure women were wiser 100 years ago than today, if only because they weren't subjected to a left wing indoctrination in college. Prager often mentions this -- that his Yiddish speaking grandmother had more wisdom than the highly educated feminists of today.

Gagdad Bob said...

"It’s the half-educated, as usual, who’s the enemy. He always is. The Wise Men and the shepherds both knelt in Bethlehem."

Gagdad Bob said...

I can't wait to finish Heather MacDonald's The Diversity Delusion. It's making me sick.

Normally truth is exhilarating, but this is nauseating. Like chemotherapy, I suppose. Except I'm not the one with the ideological cancer.

Gagdad Bob said...

Which is a good metaphor, because MacDonald explains how there is a University 1 which transmits truth and conducts genuine research, and diversity-obsessed University 2 that is parasitic on it. And University 2 is rapidly swallowing up University 1.

julie said...

I haven't read the book but the gist is clear enough. It is sickening; I think the current term is "black pill," because it is so tremendously depressing. The implications are horrible, but it's hard to see how they're wrong when we can watch it play out on a daily basis.

Gagdad Bob said...

Another sickening catastrophe of literature, only from the other direction: Trump and a Post-Truth World, by Ken Wilber.

To think that I once looked up to this ignorant jackass!

I'm tempted to get the book and do an extensive review.

Gagdad Bob said...

Can't be reviewed. I read the sample, and it's just poorly written pretentious gibberish.

julie said...

I love the pearl-clutching shrieking about "Populism!!11!11" They must have figured out that crying "fascism" isn't working, since people are noticing that the only ones acting like fascists are leftists.

Frankly, populism sounds pretty darn appealing, considering that it implies things like "your vote matters," and "people should have a say in what their government actually does."

Gagdad Bob said...

'[P]olls consistently showed that people felt Trump was “more truthful” than Hillary Clinton (who, no matter how much of an atmosphere of “corruption” followed her, as many believed, she never set out explicitly and blatantly to lie, or certainly nowhere nearly as much as Trump).'

Er, what?

Gagdad Bob said...

I can't help suspecting Wilber has suffered some kind of organic brain damage.

Gagdad Bob said...

Dear readers: please notify me if I start to deteriorate like that. I like to think I'll recognize it, but you never know.

Gagdad Bob said...

And I did notice some deterioration for a couple months, but over the past week I've begun to feel back on top of things. Hopefully just one of those slumps rather than the beginning of a slow decline.

Gagdad Bob said...

Speaking of bad literature, I just received a copy of The Infernal Library: On Dictators, the Books They Wrote, and Other Catastrophes of Literacy. Sounds like a hoot.

ted said...

Wilber has become a caricature of himself, sadly. I loved his work once, and now I don't. It's like an ex-gf, and we're and non-reading terms now.

Gagdad Bob said...

I read somewhere that he refuses to allow any editor to touch his work, which no doubt contributes to the excruciatingly bad prose. I first noticed the downward trend after Sex, Ecology and Spirituality in 1995. His journals (1999) were cringeworthy, and the novel (2002) was just an embarrassment. He must have no self-awareness. Maybe that's it: no self and therefore no awareness that it's still there.

ted said...

Watch the first two minutes of this... what buffoon Moore is!

Gagdad Bob said...

I often wonder how one can have a conversation with someone like that. I think Davila has it about right:

"Engaging in dialogue with those who do not share our assumptions is nothing more than a stupid way to kill time."

Gagdad Bob said...

One other reason it can be so hard to debate a leftist is they literally aren't even wrong. I was looking into the origins of that concept last night, and it says here,

The phrase implies that not only is someone not making a valid point in a discussion, but they don't even understand the nature of the discussion itself, or the things that need to be understood in order to participate.

This is far more than just an argument leading to a wrong conclusion. The premises aren't even related to the conclusion or are themselves completely nonsensical.

The premises, their arrangements, the conclusion, all are so divorced from facts and logic that even attempting to rationally engage with it gives it too much credit.

Either through willful ignorance, or at best by being out of date with current research, they don't know enough about the subject to know what is needed to form a sensible argument. This can be caused by the Dunning-Kruger effect, where someone makes a not even wrong argument but lacks the meta-cognitive ability to recognize that they don't know enough even to make a wrong argument, never mind a right one.


That's Moore. One wouldn't even know where to begin. He's arguing so far downstream from his ignorance, misinformation, bigotry, and incorrect premisses, that one feels overwhelmed.

julie said...

It's sad when someone doesn't even reach up to the Donny level of discussion. They aren't just out of their element, they're out of their minds. One wonders how such a person manages to get a day, so disjointed and irrational is their thought.

We have a neighbor who suffers from (and occasionally enjoys) some pretty major hallucinations/ delusions. Apparently not quite bad enough to be institutionalized, unfortunately, but bad enough to pose serious problems for herself and the people around her. Even so, I suspect she's more in touch with reality than the Moores of the world. Certainly far less dangerous, as nobody agrees with her that airplanes have been landing in her back yard...

julie said...

*to get through a day, that is...

Anonymous said...

Well, we here at the NWO take credit for creating PC ideology, indeed it is a carefully crafted weaponized ideology, the most brilliant every devised. It propagates itself!

A 36 year-old grope recollection can be something significant. Pah, we who created the ideology know that is poppycock. What if some spiteful maven, at a family function, blurts out a charge of that ilk against the patriarch of the house? Laughter all around.

But the minions, in their millions, carry out a serious program. They have swallowed the Kool-aid. The fools. Useful fools.

Anonymous said...

Now then, let us consider Yoga. Is a Christian also a yogin? Yes they are. "Yoga" means "to yoke" and a "yogin" is a person who is yoked, as an ox is yoked to a cart. It is a metaphor for a human yoked to God.

The Lord's Prayer, recited by a Christian, is yoga. Therefore, yoga doctrine is applicable to Christians, as Christian doctrine is applicable to Yogins of any stripe, such as Vedantists and Hindus. The life story of Jesus dovetails seamlessly with the yoga doctrine of rebirth. Christianity and Yoga are materially one and the same.

That being said, a discussion of the benighted wrong-doer (the Leftist), would not be complete without scrutinizing the Leftist through the lens of yoga as well.

Unity, Sincerity, Equality, and Surrender....the four pillars of Yoga, would tend to see the Leftist as eminently curable. Albeit there may be a point where a person is too far gone to repent and fly right, however this point is reached by only a very few of the most willfullyt wicked. The others, are salvageable.

Daniel T said...

Trump should have gone with Amy Barrett.

Gagdad Bob said...

She's being held in reserve for when RBG is officially pronounced dead.

julie said...

Anyway, it doesn't matter who he nominates. The left playbook follows the idea of "show me the man, and I'll show you the crime."

As Christians (or at least people of faith), we know that everyone is a sinner. By grace, though, we know that through Christ we are forgiven, and once forgiven our wrongs are lifted from our shoulders for eternity.

To the left, it is believed that everyone is a criminal; conveniently, in fact, we have reached the point that most people unknowingly commit felonies on a regular basis. So long as we keep our heads down and don't, say, accept a nomination for a position of any power or consequence, it's unlikely that anyone will notice most of the more obscure offenses. However, the moment anyone attracts the notice of the left, it becomes simply a matter of time before they find something, anything, which they can use to try to ruin your life if not outright destroy you. There is no grace, nor mercy, for anyone who isn't in thrall to their side.

Amy Barrett? I don't know a thing about her, but I'll bet someone is already lined up to claim she tweeted something mean or used the n-word once in 1972, or maybe they'll just imply she had an abortion and a sordid past. Maybe she got drunk once in high school and there's a yearbook photo of her passed out somewhere, and if there is you can bet that every pixel will splashed across the cover of the Washington Post and the New York Times. And even if it's false, they'll publish the salacious details and then issue a retraction a couple of hours later after the damage has been done.

The better the person, the worse the treatment will be. This circus has nothing to do with a fair and reasonable evaluation of a candidate for an important position, and everything to do with getting their way by any means necessary.

Van Harvey said...

Gagdad said "...The phrase implies that not only is someone not making a valid point in a discussion, but they don't even understand the nature of the discussion itself, or the things that need to be understood in order to participate..."

It took me long enough to notice that, but once I did, that was when I began asking trolls and anninnies "What do you think an Individual Right is?". Their replies made it clear that attempting to discuss anything to do with Liberty or Justice or the Rule of Law, was a discussion that they were not even up to considering, let alone arguing about.

The sad fact is that many trolls, are trolls, because they aren't up to being anything more than a troll.


Anonymous said...

The prime individual right is (at least for that individual) some form of control over Rule of Law. But try telling that one to somebody who believes they know everything while actually controlling nothing.

Good God, if only you could see yourselves. The five proven senses cannot ever know truth. Only the one mythical sense can prove an unknown god who never shows up in any way which the five senses can detect. And if you don’t believe this then you’re pure concentrated evil.

And one still wonders why religion is in such a steep decline in this country.

julie said...

No offense, Anon, but your comment was clear as mud.

Just trying to understand where you're coming from: Do you mean that the senses can know truth and that God is knowable, or do you mean just what you said?

And do you assert that someone who believes God is knowable is evil, or do you mean the opposite?

Not being snarky, just genuinely confused. Clearly there is sarcasm in there, but the wording is such that I am too stupid to follow which direction it is intended.

Van Harvey said...

aninnymouse said "The prime individual right is (at least for that individual) some form of control over Rule of Law."

Thank you for that demonstration of being not even wrong.

Chris said...

That quote got my attention . Wilber is a smart guy - I have absolutely know idea how anyone remotely intelligent and/or honest could say such a thing . I must confess , I’d love it if you would review the book - your reactions will assuredly be awesome .