The Bee and the Lamb, Part 10

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The essay below is the tenth in a series by Takuan Seiyo. See the list at the bottom of this post for links to the previous installments.

Left: Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Dance at Le Moulin de la Galette, 1876
Right: George Grosz, Metropolis, 1916/17

The Bee and the Lamb
Part 10

By Takuan Seiyo

In the bog of Demonic Mendacity

The undead zombies of the academy

The academic creators of postmodernism, most of them PhDs in philosophy of the German kind, were all far-left socialists around the time that their creed showed its decisive failure as theory and as morality. The booming prosperity and relative freedom of the West and of its working class, particularly in super-capitalist America of the 50’s, belied Karl Marx’s dialectics. The Western proletariat, instead of rising against its capitalist masters, was busy buying homes, cars and TVs, and enjoying the good life. Meanwhile, the communist Valhalla, the Soviet Union, revealed itself after Stalin’s death to have been a machine of mass murder of the malnourished, run by a megalomaniac monster.

“Postmodernism,” wrote the philosopher Stephen Hicks in Explaining Postmodernism, “is the academic far Left’s epistemological strategy for responding to the crisis caused by the failures of socialism in theory and in practice. Confronted by harsh evidence and ruthless logic the far Left had a reply: That is only logic and evidence; logic and evidence are subjective; you cannot really prove anything; feelings are deeper than logic; and our feelings say socialism.” [1]

Conveniently, by the middle of the twentieth century, epistemology and linguistics had already turned into gibberish, not the least due to earlier efforts by illustrious names such as Russell and Wittgenstein. Hicks quotes the German philosopher-scientist Moritz Schlick whose prolific output in the 1920’s revolved around issues such as the meaninglessness of the proposition: “Does the external world exist?” and the corollary issue of the null connection between cause and effect, belabored by Wittgenstein.

Of course any Zen adept would react to the question “Does the external world exist?” by whacking the questioner with a staff, thereby proving the existence and, later, when the blue-red welts formed on the budding philosopher’s backside, the causality as well. But the peculiar perversions of 19th century German philosophy and the great catastrophe of World War I have somehow leeched the vital sap of life from European culture. Instead of climbing or hewing or just classifying rocks, the philosophes preferred being chained to them in Plato’s cave, arguing endlessly about the flickering images.

While Reality’s thorough thrashing of socialism sent many Left intellectuals into terminal despair, for others the crisis meant only that a more radical assault on capitalism was needed. Instead of accepting that Reality had proved them wrong, determined academic socialists declared Reality itself null and void, along with reason and even the possibility of telling true from false and right from wrong. Consequently, as Hicks puts it, postmodernism has recast the nature of rhetoric into “persuasion in the absence of cognition” — a sheer political weapon with which to swat aside and overpower any opposition to socialism in any form.

“The regular deployments of ad hominem, the setting up of straw men, and the regular attempts to silence opposing voices are all logical consequences of the postmodern epistemology of language. Stanley Fish [snip] calls all opponents of racial preferences bigots and lumps them in with the Ku Klux Klan. Andrea Dworkin calls all heterosexual males rapists and repeatedly labels ‘Amerika’ a fascist state. With such rhetoric, truth or falsity is not the issue: what matters primarily is the language’s effectiveness.” [2]

Postmodern (“PoMo”) ideology explicitly rejects truth and logic. In such a framework, it’s easier to understand the curious mixture of presentism and relativism we visited earlier. Hicks summarizes this perverse phenomenon as: “On the one hand, all cultures are equally deserving of respect; on the other, Western culture is uniquely destructive and bad.” He adduces enduring examples of postmodernist theory blatantly at odds with historical facts:

Postmodernists: The West is deeply racist.
Fact: The West ended slavery for the first time ever, and racist ideas are on the defensive only in places where Western ideas have made inroads.

Postmodernists: The West is deeply sexist.
Fact: Western women were the first to get the vote, contractual rights, and the opportunities that most women in the world are still without.

Postmodernists: Western capitalist countries are cruel and exploitive of their poorer citizens.
Fact: The poor in the West are far richer than the poor anywhere else, both in terms of material assets and the opportunities to improve their condition.

The place of honor in the postmodernist Pantheon belongs probably to Jacques Derrida (1930-2004). Derrida’s main task in life was to help advance Marxism by deconstruction of the rational foundations of the West. An academic superstar, the list of universities where he coughed the infecting mist into the brains of adoring tens of thousands included, among others, France’s three most prestigious universities: Sorbonne, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and École Normale Supérieure (ENS), Johns Hopkins, Yale, New York University, The New School for Social Research, Stony Brook University and the University of California at Irvine.

The Australian mathematician and architectural critic Nikos Salingaros summed up Derrida’s “contribution” to Western Civilization as a lethal virus absolutizing subjectivity, motivated by the will to destroy [3]:

“Deconstruction asserts that texts have no ultimate meaning, and that their interpretation is up to readers. Deconstruction [snip] erases associations that form coherent thoughts. It acts like a computer virus that erases information in a hard disk. The Derrida virus seeks to undermine any original meaning via a complex and entirely self-referential play of words.

Deconstruction devalues common sense and rejects customary wisdom. [snip] As a virus, it has invaded civilization, erasing collective common sense while spreading with astonishing rapidity.

Deconstruction is not simply a worldview among others. A method to erase knowledge, masquerading as a new philosophical movement, cannot be quarantined within academia. Indoctrinated students eventually enter the real world threatening to create havoc. [snip]

Deconstruction has been remarkably successful in dismantling traditional literature, art, and architecture. Like a biological virus [snip], it only partially destroys its host, because total destruction would stop further transmission. It breaks up coherent sets of ideas by separating natural modules into submodules. Some of these submodules are then selectively destroyed in order to subsequently reattach their components randomly into an incoherent construct.[snip]

Once formed, worldviews are unlikely to change and are trusted more than any direct sensory evidence. These internal worldviews become so much a part of oneself that they are unlikely to undergo any modification, unless one is forced to do so. For this reason, those who have adopted a cult philosophy deny all evidence that threatens the cult’s vision of reality. Rational arguments make no difference.”

Salingaros quotes Derrida himself:

“All I have done … is dominated by the thought of a virus, what could be called a parasitology, a virology, the virus being many things … The virus is in part a parasite that destroys, that introduces disorder into communication. [snip] This is what happens with a virus; it derails a mechanism of the communicational type, its coding and decoding … is neither alive nor dead … [this is] all that I have done since I began writing.” [4]

If Derrida infected the culture with an intellectual virus, Michel Foucault (1926-1984) carried this one step further by sparing no efforts to infect himself, eventually dying of AIDS after a promiscuous sweep of the homo bathhouses of San Francisco.

A graduate of the two aforementioned citadels of French learning, Foucault is acknowledge as perhaps the preeminent social theorist and historian of ideas of mid-20th century, though he was, to be blunt, simply a malevolent intellectual masturbator in the solipsistic German tradition (e.g. Hegel, Heidegger). A prolific one, though, with a recondite vocabulary and soporifically impenetrable style, which, along with his membership in the French Communist Party, later supplanted by Maoist idolatry, qualified him for admission to France’s most august intellectual body, Collège de France, as — this bears reflection — Professor of the History of Systems of Thought.

Like Derrida, Foucault spread his intellectual HIV over much of the world in person. In addition to his teaching positions in several French universities, he held academic posts in Sweden, Germany, Poland, Tunisia and, in the United States, at the University of Buffalo and at UC Berkeley.

We will not waste time perusing his books, though various dystopian afflictions plaguing the West now are the result of eager university students absorbing their postmodernist teaching and then inflicting it upon their lessers after assuming responsible positions in society.

Among others, we owe the pervasive odor of urine and the pitiful shrieking hobos in our center cities, and not a few small genocides by obvious madmen left to live among the sane, to Foucault’s 1961 book, Madness and Civilization and its critique of domineering Reason suppressing the truth of madness. Those who wonder how Europe could have possibly committed the prima facie insanity of importing millions of sharia pollinators might peruse Foucault’s panegyrics to the new form of “political spirituality” he perceived in Muslim turmoil during the 1979 Iranian mullahs’ revolution [5].

How vast and demented Foucault’s influence has been might be inferred from a peek into Journal of Research in Nursing that, one might assume, exists in order to publish learned articles about the swabbing of wounds and intravenous nutrition. The abstract of “On the constitution and status of ‘evidence’ in the health sciences” reads:

“Drawing on the philosophy of Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze, this paper interrogates the constitution of ‘evidence’ that defines the evidence-based movement in the health sciences. What are the current social and political conditions under which scientific knowledge appears to be ‘true’? Foucault describes these conditions as state ‘science’, a regime that privileges economic modes of governance and efficiency. Today, the Cochrane taxonomy and research database is increasingly endorsed by government and public health policy makers. Although this ‘evidence-based’ paradigm ostensibly promotes the noble ideal of ‘true knowledge’ free from political bias, in reality, this apparent neutrality is dangerous because it masks the methods by which power silently operates to inscribe rigid norms and to ensure political dominance. Through the practice of critique, this paper begins to expose and to politicise the workings of this power, ultimately suggesting that scholars are in a privileged position to oppose such regimes and foremost have the duty to politicize what hides behind the distortion and misrepresentation of ‘evidence’.” [6]

Professor Hicks summarizes Foucault in these words:

“In his ‘Introduction’ to The Archaeology of Knowledge, Foucault [snip] speaks of his desire to erase himself. [snip] Foucault extends his desire for effacement to the entire human species. At the end of The Order of Things, for example, he speaks almost longingly about the coming erasure of mankind: Man is ‘an invention of recent date that will soon be erased, like a face drawn in sand at the edge of the sea.’”

What civilization, then, could possibly enshrine a death-craving, babble-spouting sodomite nymphomaniac, but one that has been similarly infected? Except it’s not the civilization that has been infected but just its official custodians and their acolytes whom another Frenchman, Julien Benda, accused of treason already in 1927. The simpler folks had just been seduced to turn away. They inhaled in increasing doses and came to like a compound of dumb digital diversions, sex, porn and pop, uppers and downers, slavery to credit and status shopping, and news and entertainment programs programmed by programmers with hidden agendas and degrees conferred by the same loci of treason and insanity as had enshrined Messrs. Derrida and Foucault. And Herbert Marcuse (1898-1979) too, the guru of the 60’s and the most influential peddler of the Frankfurt School’s tainted goods in the United States.

The Institut für Sozialforschung had been established at the University of Frankfurt in 1923 by an endowment from German expat Felix Weil and his father, a prominent grain merchant in Argentina. It was a particularly German concoction, heavily influenced by Hegel and Heidegger, and imbued with the notion that Western Civilization, having mortally injured itself in Word War I, was fit for the trash heap and had to be replaced. Mutating a new form of Marxism, the Frankfurt School taught that power lay with the institutions of culture, rather than with those who controlled the means of production. Thus was “Critical Theory” born, by which all Western cultural precepts and institutions could be taken down one by one, so that Revolution might finally succeed.

The raison d’être for this work being to plow through where there is too much beating around the bush, let us redefine “German” as “German-Jewish.” Practically all the big names of the Frankfurt School were Jews: Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Herbert Marcuse, Friedrich Pollock, Leo Lowenthal, Kurt Lewin, Adolph Lowe, Erich Fromm, David Riazanov (Russian) [7]. The gentiles were a small and less distinguished minority: Karl Korsch, Karl August Wittfogel, the fabled Soviet spy Richard Sorge.

Why would the wealthiest (and Jewish [8]) grain merchant in the world want to fund a Marxist institute is as much an enigma as why the wealthy (and non-Jewish) industrialist Friedrich Engels would finance Karl Marx or why hundreds of the wealthiest Americans, many from old American families and, again, with a disproportionate Jewish participation, would actively, passionately, devote so much energy and money toward the destruction of their own country and their own ethny. The American evolutionary psychologist Kevin MacDonald who reconstructed the previously semi-taboo Jewish components of major Leftist calamities like the Bolshevik Revolution, Communism, and the Frankfurt School, has built a theory around that. Alas, the theory he laid out in his The Culture of Critique trilogy and other writings is little more than a medieval blood libel: the Joos have a genetic evolutionary strategy to dominate and feed off their “white” host [9].

A credible theory, instead of sieving out all the contradictory data and making unwarranted generalizations based on the hand-picked remainder, would account for and integrate the counter-indicators; for instance, that the Jews were among the most patriotic segments of the German population: from a community of under 600,000, an estimated 90,000 Jews served in the German Army during World War 1 and 12,000 lost their lives. Likewise, whereas the most consequential proponents of Marxism in all its forms have been Jews, the most consequential proponents of libertarian freedom were also Jews: the important ones include Mises, Hayek (1/4 Jewish), Rothbard, Ayn Rand, Friedman.

In logic and social phenomena, the proposition “Many X are Y” or even “Most X are Y” does not allow for reversibility into “Most Y are X.” Moreover, much has already been written to explain Jewish Leftism (e.g. in the Jewish neoconservative monthly Commentary), and the issue is of current relevance only with respect to the United States and, arguably, Great Britain. Europeans should rather ask themselves what propels the rabid German and French Leftism.

How come the “Frankfurt School” is still strong and thriving in Frankfurt, its old Jewish pillars now feted as German intellectual giants, and its newer all-German issue Jürgen Habermas the country’s No. 1 public intellectual? Why is there a party in Germany that proposes to tax income above €500,000 at 100%, and a party is actually ruling in France that passed a 75% income tax? Why are French icons Bardot and Depardieu seeking freedom in Russia, and Germany is a fiscal and religious police state searching cars on the Swiss border more rigorously than the Nazis did and jailing resistors to Islamization? Why is the money confiscated from German and French citizens used to subsidize Muslim minorities that in turn beat up, rape and burn [10] the people whose money was so confiscated, with the people severely punished by the state when they draw the logical conclusions? Not nearly enough Europeans have been asking those questions.

Adorno Monument, Theodor W. Adorno-Platz, Frankfurt

When the Nazis came to power, the Frankfurt School was disbanded and its denizens had to flee Germany. Between 1933 and 1939, the most important of those neue-Marxisten, including Marcuse, found their way to the United States and obtained academic posts there, mainly in New York (Columbia, New School of Social Research) and California. And so the infection spread, under the commie-friendly Franklin Roosevelt government.

Marcuse’s unique genius in adapting Marxism to the self-regenerating resilience of American capitalism was in marrying the old concepts to Freudian psychology — oppression plus repression. Since the proletariat was content in acquiring wealth and the comforts that go with it, wealth per se had to be demonized as the purveyor of goods and comforts that were “enslaving” the working class.

Productive work diverted one from pleasure — hence the call for “polymorphous perversity,” “Make love not war,” and other Marcusean mottoes plastered all over the West’s 1960s — in Europe as “Marx, Marcuse, and Mao,” and in the United States as Timothy Leary’s “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” Marcuse even managed to transform laziness and rejection of personal hygiene into positive cultural values, thereby spiking, as far the 60s generation was concerned, the Protestant work ethic and body deodorant.

To demonize capitalism and its wealth creation further, it was necessary to link it in a zero sum formula to the destruction of nature, as an inevitable consequence. Thus was modern environmental socialism born, with the farce of “environmental justice” serving now as a bludgeon with which to take from those who have the ability (Whitey), and transfer it to those who do not (i.e. not-Whitey). Seeing the importance of this new New Marxist ju-jitsu throw, Marcuse played a pivotal part in the “Ecology and Revolution” symposium in Paris in 1972, and devoted his last essay to it: “Ecology and the Critique of Modern Society” (1979). [11]

Marcuse’s famous essays “Repressive Tolerance” (1965) and “An Essay on Liberation” (1969) even recast the West’s tolerance as repression. In his book Intellectual Morons Daniel Flynn laid bare Marcuse’s trick as converting reality into its opposite, i.e. “freedom is totalitarianism, democracy is dictatorship, education is indoctrination, violence is nonviolence, and fiction is truth.” To this could be added Marcuse’s other fraudulent memes transplanted straight from the Frankfurt School, i.e. that Nazism was a consequence of capitalism, Communist Parties are the sole anti-fascist power in the world, fascism is an extreme right-wing ideology, and God-Family-Country conservatives are fascists who are not just wrong but mentally deranged.

From that, directly, was born the political culture of bold lying, smearing political opponents, oppressive political correctness and the persecution of political dissent by Marcuse’s children at the helm of all power in the West today. But Marcuse raised not just one but the two most noxious plagues decimating the West today. He proposed “Archimedean points for a larger emancipation” through which a revolutionary minority could apply leverage in order to topple the large edifice of capitalist society.

These points would be the “marginalized and outcast elements” deemed irrational, immoral, or criminal by capitalist definition: women, teens, sexual deviants, psychos, felons, immigrants, the black and the brown and the handicapped. It’s their activism, Marcuse prophesied, that would topple capitalist society where workers’ activism had failed. Moreover, only such minority groups legitimately deserved tolerance, relabeled as “liberating tolerance”. The erstwhile stakeholders, i.e. the autochthon, the male, the Christian, the sane, the family-oriented, the patriotic and the striving (i.e. “capitalist”) ought to be restrained in their liberty so that the balance of power could shift to the Left. This would be, and is today, nothing but redistribution of political, social and cultural capital, on top of the redistribution of financial capital which is already one of the primary activities of the modern Western-Socialist (they are all Socialist) state.

The notion of “liberating tolerance” that is in fact oppressive intolerance is now played out daily in the life of the West. The view of numerous Black “intellectuals” that no Black can be a racist is now the accepted view in America’s Progressive circles, and the American Muslim provocateur, Zaid Shakir, says that no Muslim can be a terrorist. What’s worse, quite a few once-normal Whites believe all that. Thus is the Inversion of Reality, attained.

The pre-eminent historian of Marxism, Leszek Kolakowski, named Chapter 11 in his seminal Main Currents of Marxism: “Herbert Marcuse: Marxism as a Totalitarian Utopia of the New Left.” You who are reading this are already living in the completed rough design of that construction, a couple of years before the painted Styrofoam beams give way.

Marcuse’s superstar status allowed him to spread the infecting spores throughout the West, just as Derrida and Foucault were able to do. He taught at the University of Frankfurt, at Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Brandeis, UC San Diego, and in hundreds of speaking engagements around the world. It’s remarkable that the résumé of the fourth major pillar of postmodernism, Jean-François Lyotard, includes teaching high school in Algeria, then University of Paris, Derrida’s American beachheads at UC Irvine, Johns Hopkins and Yale, Foucault’s nest UC Berkeley, Marcuse’s UC San Diego, and then Emory University in Atlanta, University of Montreal and University of São Paulo in Brazil.

From those hubs of viral transmission, the plague spread. First, thousands of Western academics and intellectual opinion makers and, by now, tens of millions of university graduates who run all government and all cultural and educational institutions in every country of the Euro-peoples between Berlin and Brisbane.

The two most salient of the intermediary disseminators were celebrated American academics Edward Said (1933-2003) and Howard Zinn (1922-2010). Both excelled at the obsessive picking at the West’s motes, and suffered from major blindness relative to all the Eastern and Southern beams-in-the-eye — i.e. the classic case of what we defined earlier as double cognitive exotropia.

According to his 26 September 2003 obituary in The Guardian, Edward Said was “widely regarded as the outstanding representative of the post-structuralist left in America. Above all, he was the most articulate and visible advocate of the Palestinian cause in the United States.” Said is also revered in the cultural establishment as one of the leading literary critics of the second half of the 20th century, a revolutionary reformist of the field of Oriental Studies, a sage, a philosopher, and what is known among French sophisticates as homme d’action culturelle — though those bumpkin Anglos may use an easier French term, saboteur.

All this and Said’s professorship of English and comparative literature at Columbia University could not have been attained had he not produced his celebrated books by perverting the history he knew and inventing the history he didn’t know — particularly the history of Western Civilization and the Middle East, his major subject. He also tampered with quotations, falsified translations, constructed incoherent arguments based on faulty methodology, ignored anthropology, sociology and psychology, ignored the bulk of Orientalism’s important literature because he didn’t know German, misrepresented the work of many scholars, and flung willy-nilly pejoratives, hyperbole, hysterical exaggerations and false imputations of racism and other guilt [12] — all in the holy cause of postmodernism’s jihad against whitey and his civilization, bolstered by his personal bile as a torch-bearing Arab living in an Israel-supporting Anglo country.

Said credited his politics to his reading of Antonio Gramsci, Adorno, Foucault and Raymond Williams. Gramsci had been the inventor of the Cultural Marxism idea later perfected by the Frankfurt School; Adorno was a main pillar of the Frankfurt School alongside Marcuse; Foucault has been our subject here, and Williams was a Welsh New-Leftist communist. Said’s Orientalism (1978) was an application of the Gramscian concept of controlling hegemony in combination with the Foucauldian bla-bla of discourse and knowledge in the service of power.

Said used that mélange to deconstruct and malign the West’s attitudes and interactions with the Arab or otherwise Muslim East. His particularly bizarre charge was that the academic study of Islam in the West has served as a tool of imperialist domination

One of the most influential books of the last 50 years, ever since its publication Orientalism has been obligatory reading in every field of the arts and humanities where the Frankfurt School’s Critical Theory has any sway — which means all of them. Above all, it has fueled the field of postcolonial studies — one of those academic disciplines that grow in a society of spiritless capitalist surplus like mold does on leftovers from a sumptuous picnic. But the book is just an exercise of a misshapen pot calling a big, sturdy kettle black, though the pot be the blacker one by a factor of three [13].

One could hardly deconstruct the Palestinian deconstructor’s famous book better than the erudite Ibn Warraq has done in his Defending the West [14]:

“What makes self-examination for Arabs and Muslims , and particularly criticism of Islam in the West very difficult is the totally pernicious influence of Edward Said’s Orientalism. The latter work taught an entire generation of Arabs the art of self-pity — “were it not for the wicked imperialists, racists and Zionists, we would be great once more”- encouraged the Islamic fundamentalist generation of the 1980s, and bludgeoned into silence any criticism of Islam. [snip] The aggressive tone of Orientalism is what I have called ‘intellectual terrorism’, since it does not seek to convince by arguments or historical analysis but by spraying charges of racism, imperialism, Eurocentrism [snip]; anyone who disagrees with Said has insult heaped upon him.”

A longtime contributor to the communist magazine The Nation, in 2001 Said published there an attack on old-school Harvard professor Samuel Huntington, whose “Clash of Civilizations” we reviewed earlier. Said titled it, “Clash of Ignorance”. What he writes there is beside the point; it’s a waste of time like anything this and other poststructuralists have written. More cogent and closer to the core of Reality is what Ross Douthat wrote about Said writing about Huntington:

“There is something sad, truth be told, and a little desperate about Said’s essay: It reads like the flailings of an intellectual who realizes, too late, that history is passing him by. He lashes out indecorously, calling Huntington “a clumsy writer and inelegant thinker” — an odd accusation from a essayist [sic] whose prose often reads like something badly translated from an obscure Eastern European tongue.”

Again, that desperate flailing of failed Marxism, in Said’s case channeled to power the threshing of a failed culture, Islam.

Edward Said was Barry-Barack’s professor at Columbia and later, a pal. Dinesh D’Souza credits him as one of now-President Obama’s three “Founding Fathers,” the other two being the black America-haters Frank Marshall Davis and Jeremiah Wright. Nor is his impact confined to America alone. The Saidian brain-disabling mutation is now manifest in the daily life of all the subject peoples of the West’s Progressive Ruling Oligarchy. To apprehend Said’s ghost conducting The Fools’ Symphytic Orchestra of Norway [15], one need only read “Spreading a Romantic View of Islam” at Gates of Vienna.

The historian Richard Landes has argued that Said had deliberately misconstrued Islamic culture by ignoring its unique honor-and-shame aspects, demonizing studies of that culture that showed its “otherness” and cowing the entire Oriental Studies field into a position of academic fraud and politically correct disconnect from Reality. I would rephrase that as weaving a massive net of deception — indeed taqiyyah — that has undone not merely the field of Oriental Studies but the entire standing of the West in the Muslim Orient, with incalculable consequences with respect to the aiding and abetting of the most fanatical strains of Islamic activism everywhere, and sharia-importing at home. All this due to a Saidesque projection of Western rationality and humanistic values onto a tribal, emotions-driven, savagely sanguinary, intensely ethnocentric and religiously fanatical Muslim culture that can buy and deploy the West’s technology, but not its 2500 years of cultural, moral and intellectual development.

The affairs of the West are now managed by people who had their brains exchanged in school and now believe that given the voting ballot and a daily bowl of Western foreign aid rice, Mahmoud from Aswan will soon sit with Larry from Sheboygan to discuss over a non-alcoholic beer how jointly to contribute to world Peace, Justice and Equity. Incidentally, Sheboygan, Wisconsin, is a small city (pop. 49,000) founded in 1846 by German immigrants. It is now home to an estimated 6000 Hmong, 100+ imported Muslim families that have now graced the community with a mosque, and an indeterminable further number of decidedly non-Germanic refugees whose origin may only be guessed from info releases of Wisconsin welfare and church refugee aid programs. According to those, Sheboygan will be further enriched in 2013 with hundreds more arrivals from East Africa, Iraq, Afghanistan, Burma and Nepal. As they say in the American vernacular, Sheboygan rocks; its Strength-in-Diversity will grow by leaps and bounds onto a glorious future.

Wikipedia has an 11,164 word hagiographic article on Edward Said; in comparison, Aristotle gets 10,795 words of much more lukewarm prose. Let that fact sink.

As there are so many Said/ Zinn parallels in output and impact, let us get started with Howard Zinn as we did with his dear friend, Edward Said: in a eulogy — by another dear friend, Noam Chomsky. It was published, significantly, in Al Jazeera.

“Zinn was an award-winning social activist, writer and historian,” reads the editorial intro. “His best-selling A People’s History of the United States spawned a new field of historical study: People’s Histories”. The link to Zinn’s most famous book leads to a website named “History Is a Weapon.” Much to think about, right there.

The Chomsky text that follows defines the message of A People’s History as “the crucial role of the people who remain unknown in carrying forward the endless struggle for peace and justice, and about the victims of the systems of power that create their own versions of history and seek to impose it.” Of course, had Zinn and his ilk been really interested in giving a voice to the oppressed, they would have given it to the non-brainwashed white autochthon, the white ethnocentric, the generic white male, the traditional Christian, the American constitutionalist, the European traditionalist, the patriot, the heteronormative, the successful small entrepreneur and the middle class as a whole — the “bourgeoisie” that has been the backbone of the West and is now squeezed out of existence by a pincer envelopment of the rich globalists and the poor tribalists: a Davos-Detroit-Damascus triple tap.

Howard Zinn was indeed the most influential American historian of the last 100 years, though he was a lifelong Communist propagandist and perhaps the most successful saboteur America has ever experienced. By the time he died, A People’s History had sold over 2 million copies. Though published in 1980, it still sells over 100,000 copies a year. The book is required reading in thousands of American high schools and colleges, and not only in history studies but in fields ranging from economics to literature.

A People’s History strings together the black spots from American history, omitting the rest. It’s Columbus from the point of view of Caribbean Indians, then the American Indian tribes’ ‘Trail of Tears,’ the slave trade, the indentured poor exported from the British Isles, the paternalistic “tyranny” of the American Revolution, oppression of women and of “people of color,” American conquest of Mexican territory in 1848, the class struggles of the 19th century, the slaves’ emancipation that was no emancipation, the robber barons etc,.—and that’s before we get to the 20th century [16]. The effect is as though a psychopath has taken a walk in a mountain meadow and brought back home not the wildflowers, wild strawberries and shapely leaves but all the cow pies, poison mushrooms and broken twigs he could find.

A celebrated example of postmodernism’s Critical Pedagogy, A People’s History is a Marxist Trojan virus whose RNA consisting of “class, race, and gender discourses” dribbles in school and via mass media at home into the brain cells of the young, stupid and impressionable. When they have grown up and now teach, judge, “inform” or “entertain” others, the virus does what it’s programmed to do: multiply itself and jam the host society’s immune system.

Tellingly, Zinn penned a “Progressive Manifesto,” clearly echoing the lineage of the Communist one in a May 2009 column that he wrote for The Progressive:

“Yes, we’re dreamers. We want it all. We want a peaceful world. We want an egalitarian world. We don’t want war. We don’t want capitalism. We want a decent society.”

One could find no better substantiation of Leszek Kolakowski’s “Marxism as a Totalitarian Utopia.” Why such mendacity is demonic we will see later through the prism of the originator of this term, Eric Voegelin. But to assess the scope of the damage that Zinn’s and Said’s postmodernist rewriting of history and cultural anthropology has wrought, we have to turn again to that part of the world where, under a Marxist jackboot, truth could grow in hard crevices that it has not found under the Marxist velvet slipper in the soft West.

Upon receiving the Kluge Prize in 2003, Professor Kolakowski gave a speech entitled What the Past Is For. He said:

“We must defend and support traditional research methods, elaborated over centuries, to establish the factual course of history and separate it from fantasies, however nourishing those fantasies might be. [snip] And we must preserve our traditional belief that the history of mankind, the history of things that really happened, woven of innumerable unique accidents, is the history of each of us, human subjects; whereas the belief in historical laws is a figment of the imagination. Historical knowledge is crucial to each of us: to schoolchildren and students, to young and old. We must absorb history as our own, with all its horrors and monstrosities, as well as its beauty and splendor, its cruelties and persecutions as well as all the magnificent works of the human mind and hand; we must do this if we are to know our proper place in the universe, to know who we are and how we should act. [snip] It is important to keep on repeating [these points] again and again, because [snip] if we forget them, and they fall into oblivion, we will be condemning our culture, that is to say ourselves, to ultimate and irrevocable ruin.”

To which must be added a phrase from the Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz’s 1980 Nobel Prize acceptance speech: “Those who are alive receive a mandate from those who are silent forever.”

We have been spectacularly derelict with respect to fulfilling this mandate. Remembering those who are silent forever, truthfully, is perhaps the most vital emergency rescue a tottering civilization needs. But “remembering truthfully” is as Kolakowski defined it: it does not consist of advancing a bleached out version to counter the selective Communist blackening. To find a path out of the bog of Demonic Mendacity, we have to remember the path that brought us into it, with no convenient memory blackouts.

Those who blame the Reformation or the Enlightenment for the waning of Christianity, must open to perceive the rot in the Catholic Church that caused the Reformation, and the obscurantist rigidities in Christianity that called inexorably for a beam of light [17]. Returning to the cause of failure, obscurantist rigidity, cannot produce a different effect the second time.

Those who invent racist theories to explain the involvement of Jews in socialist movements, or who deny the Holocaust, are offending history too. In the first case, socialist parties since the 1870s were an innovation in Europe partly on account of their welcoming of Jews. But all Nationalist parties were strongly Antisemitic [18]. And the Holocaust is among the best documented event in history; those who deny it are not helping their cause but engaging in what Rudyard Kipling called “the Fool’s bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire.” If there are new roads to chart for the Western peoples, it’s better to avoid those that can only result in more bandage.

Those who want to defeat the current swelling of socialism must first reckon with the precedent outrage of global financial capitalism. Those who rage at Obama must first rage at Bush. Those who decry Muslim depredations in the West must praise Muslim immunity to the West’s diseases. Those who rail at feminists must remember that when the world was last run entirely by males, the males-in-charge cooked up World War I and World War II.

Conservatives who want to conserve must first know what to conserve, and why. Trying to reform the present by restoring a bleached past that never was seeds the inevitable failure of the future. The false and the wrong have to be accounted for; only then an endurable alternative to the Left’s malfeasant cures of past diseases may take hold.

History is where the DNA code of the West is to be found, and from which a therapeutic salve may be distilled. But history as relayed by its mendacious Left or Right manipulators is useless, for it obscures the causality of things. America’s history as relayed by Zinn can no more explain America than MacDonald’s history can explain the Jews or Said’s the Arabs. But honest history reveals the Yin-become-Yang-become-Yin eternal wheel of polar delusion and mendacity. Only when that arc is perceived in our time will it be possible to get out of the PoMo drowning bog onto solid ground.

Or else, it’s back to Sisyphus’s fate, with one variation: each time the boulder of history rolls downhill, it rolls over us.

Still frame from the 1974 animated short Sisyphus, by Marcell Jankovics


1.   Stephen R. C. Hicks, Explaining Postmodernism: Skepticism and Socialism from Rousseau to Foucault, Ockham’s Razor, August 2011. My references and quotes come from an earlier 2004 edition by Scholarly Publishing, available online. This quote, p. 90
2.   Ibid., 178
3.   Nikos Salingaros, “The Derrida Virus,” Telos, No.126, Winter 2003, pp. 66-82; reprinted in Anti-Architecture and Deconstruction, Umbau-Verlag, Solingen, Germany, 2008.
4.   Jacques Derrida, Positions, Chicago & London: University of Chicago Press, 1981, pp. 95—6.
5.   Foucaultiana being one of the best naturally composted fields of Western academia, the interested reader may find a whole book devoted to just one narrow angle of this issue: Janet Afary and Kevin B. Anderson, Foucault and the Iranian Revolution: Gender and the Seductions of Islamism, University of Chicago Press, 2005.
6.   Journal of Research in Nursing, vol. 13 no. 4 July 2008 pp. 272-280, abstract.
7.   In addition to Marcuse, two more major postmodernists of the five discussed in this chapter were Jewish: Jacques Derrida and Howard Zinn. It’s regrettable that this ethnic angle has received attention only from Nazis and ideological Antisemites, but not from traditionalist conservatives trying to rebuild the West. It ensures that the subject won’t be discussed truthfully, and without identifying the truth a true antidote cannot be devised either.
8.   The Jewish ethnicity of Weil is practically undiscoverable in any encyclopedic source in English. It’s easy to get a fuller background from Argentine sources, e.g. here.
9.   Full disclosure: I have criticized Dr. MacDonald’s work before. His response to my critique was that I was attempting “to draw boundaries of acceptable political discourse in a way that is acceptable to Jewish interests.” Mark Steyn once addressed such infantilisms in a column for National Review entitled “Espying the Jew”.
10.   The same principle of logic applies to Muslims as applies to other minority groups: “Most X are Y” does not convert into “Most Y are X.” However, when the X is such a big subset of Y — i.e. Western Muslims’ terrorism, violence, rape, “grooming,” massive welfare mooching, racial hatred, religious fanaticism, subversive agendas etc. — and when the whole group Y has been imported to the West only in the past 50 years, and without the people’s consent at that, it’s legitimate to weigh the aggregate value of the entire set Y, i.e. the Muslim community, including those who are peaceful and self-supporting, in light of the terrible and growing damage wrought by the X subset.
11.   To realize how many dragon teeth Marcuse has sown, see this essay by UCLA Professor of Philosophy Douglas Kellner, “Marcuse, Liberation, and Radical Ecology”. What’s important now is not what Marcuse wrote in 1979 but how destructive solipsists like Kellner get to occupy in 2013 endowed chairs of philosophy at major American universities.
12.   All these statements are either direct quotes or synthesis of quotes from two books about Said, Daniel Varisco’s Reading Orientalism: Said and the Unsaid and Ibn Warraq’s Defending the West: A Critique of Edward Said’s Orientalism — both reviewed in Robert Irwin’s “Edward Said’s Shadowy Legacy”.
13.   This is in some ways a poetic exaggeration and, in others, an understatement. It’s difficult to allege Occidentalism bias to Muslims’ study of Western civilization, because Muslim societies have no Occidentalism studies. Indeed, they have no fields of study at all, except those in which Western knowledge is recycled in areas Muslim states deem useful. On the other hand, the infidel dog Islam-domination concepts and the anti-crusader, anti-colonialist, anti-Zionist and Arab-supremacist concepts have been strong and ubiquitous, and supported by nothing more than hot emotion-driven, shame-honor impulses with not even a notion that they have to correlate somehow to an objective reality.
14.   Ibn Warraq, Defending the West: A Critique of Edward Said’s Orientalism, Prometheus Books, 2007, p.18. This quote served the Norwegian “Orientalist” Fjordman well in his “The Failure of Western Universities”.
15.   Symphytic, in pathology, indicates an abnormal adhesion of two or more parts of a structure. In the case of Norway and the rest of Eurabia, a forced imposition of one of the parts, and a forced and spectacularly failing adhesion.
16.   A good resource for more Zinnology is in Discover-the-Networks.
17.   Stephen Hicks calls Postmodernism the Counter-Enlightenment. The Enlightenment was all about reason, individualism and liberalism (i.e. what I call freedomianism). Postmodernism is all about raging negative emotions, collectivism and restraints of freedom, e.g. Marcuse’s “liberating tolerance.”
18.   For example, in France, the leftist Human Rights League, founded in 1898 to defend Capt. Alfred Dreyfus against the Antisemitic plot that had destroyed him, was open to and friendly to Jews. The French Mouvement Fasciste, on the other hand, was little different from the Nazis’ Brown Shirts.

Takuan Seiyo is a European-born American writer living in exile in Japan. For his previous essays, see the Takuan Seiyo Archives.

134 thoughts on “The Bee and the Lamb, Part 10

  1. This is the most useful type of presentation, because it explains our concerns on the level of cause. We need to dig down to underlying views (philosophy/religion). This is the way we get back home, it’s the only way.

    Yep, the mass movements of humanity teach us to ride derelict to the mandate of history. Western classical philosophy, for all intent and purpose, was shoved underground two hundred fifty years ago. Eastern classical philosophies went down thousands of years ago earlier, almost identical debacles. It happened in the Garden of Eden, it happened in every advanced civilization, and now to our Western one. It’s called turning from God-essential reality.

    Whether or not it is time for a larger resurrection of sanity, it is our moral imperative to train ourselves in real philosophy and non-bogus religion, on a personal and some sort of group level.

    Takuan Seikyo, you are an example to be followed. Thank you for breaching this topic, the sticky demonic bog. I hope many will listen to your message about philosophy and ascertain it’s importance.

      • Hell, the pagan Nordic goddess of the underworld?

        Hell, quite literally, isn’t in any honest translation of the Bible, but it did become popular to insert the Norse mythology into the Bible in place of “the grave,” “Gehenna,” a valley, and the Greek mythological Hades, which most closely relates to the Nordic account.

        Or do you find “objective reality” in ancient Greek mythology?

  2. It is also possible that the employers/entrepreneurs imported immigrants to break the power of the uppity working class that didn’t know its place;

    Edward Said is a Christian who internalized Islamic Supremacism. Cultural “Marxism” parasitized on the Christian respect for the weak, whatever religion they may be. This is the central notion of “oppression”. If the tables were turned, no such respect may be expected.

    There is a lot of talk about the tolerance of Al-Andalus. Counter this with the tolerance of Sicily, where Christians were on top. It could also be argued that the tolerance of Al-Andalus was taqiyya to lure the Jews to their doom. Spread the meme that Islamo-critics, Anti-Semites and Christophobes can live in peace and harmony as long as the Anti-Semites and Christophobes are recognizable and pay a special tax.

    • Perhaps Ummayad Andalusian and Norman/Hohenstaufen Sicilian toleration were necessities generated by powers (Muslim and Christian) that depended heavily on the acquiescence, if not the goodwill, of large minorities (or subjugated majorities) of the “other” (For).give my use of Said’s term, for I see him as attacking the intellectual curiosity that made the West great.

  3. The success and promulgation of the works of Derrida, Foucault, etc. has nothing to do with their intrinsic methods or contributions to philosophy or knowledge. Derrida is at least a scholar; Foucault is a fraud in the grand French tradition of academic frauds (despite – or perhaps because of – Foucault’s sweeping claims, you will be hard-pressed to find a footnote in the works of Foucault, and when you do it will be to some totally obscure writer whom Foucault then cites as “typical” when he is nothing of the kind).

    Looking on this as a grand conspiracy theory by Marxists might catch on, but as someone who spent 15 years in acaedmia fighting these theories and their proponents (1980-1995), I can tell you that the people doing it were not motivated by any grand project, but by personal self-interest. Sociologists or economists will be best placed to analyse what happened in western academia in the past 50 years.

    Derrida, Foucault and the other post-structuralists are simply the tools by which bored academics in the anglophone world livened up their lives as “academics” and advanced their careers. Once it became clear that they were getting their work published, were becoming stars at conferences, had students clamouring to join their courses, were being promoted to professorships, then the herd mentality did the rest. By around 1995, they had gone from being the revolutionaries to being the new establishment.

    The advocates of Derrida, Foucault, Lacan were principally in departments of English and French. Consider where power and status comes from in such “disciplines”. It comes from the ability to produce novel interpretations of literature. That is what the adoption of Derrida, Foucault, Lacan, etc. gave these people. Whole new disciplines in “the arts” grew up (Film Studies, Media Studies, Cultural Studies, Women’s Studies, Post-colonial Studies etc.), and relied on these (barely comprehensible) theories to silence their critics and prove they were bona fide degree subjects.

    Academics, who had for decades relied solely on the novelty of their own (easily contested) interpretations of cultural artefacts, could now come up with (paradigm shifting) interpretations that were far harder to contest, because the were wrapped up not just in philosophical theories, but foreign philosophical theories (hence requiring knoweldge of the original language to contest the interpretation of the theories themselves). By making their interpretations relatively impenetrable, they made themselves look like great thinkers. By justifying their interpreations with “theory” (as post-structuralist philophy is known within those departments), they make their interpretations less contestable. Indeed, the irony is that in throwing out principles such as truth, knowledge, etc. they have ended up making subjects that might be important (e.g. media studies) into subjects where there is no right and there is no wrong. No-one who graduates in these subjects has any more knowledge of the supposed real object of study (say, television or advertising); most of what they leave with university with is these bizarre and relatively useless theories. And whilst our societies never articulate what the benefits are of someone being “a graduate” (rather than “a graduate in physics”), there is no measure by which anyone can judge whether or not there is any value at all to being a graduate qua graduate. Perhaps that question will be answered when most of the people stacking shelves in supermarkets can talk about Derridean interpretations of Madonna, whilst paying back their student loans for the rest of their lives.

    It is highly significant that the post-structuralists (and the structuralists for that matter) were never taken up by academic philosophers in the anglophone world (well, not until they’d been around for 30 years in other departments, when the career-minded in anglophone philosophy departments realised that it was a way for them too to make money, attain promotion, gain power).

    I spent years studying how it was that post-structuralims became the dominant paradigm in so many disciplines in western academia. By the time I finished my research, I decided there was no point in even trying to seek a career in acaademia, because there was no work unless one toed the party line. I moved into technology and finance instead.

    People like Derrida, Foucault, Lacan did not see themselves as belonging to the school of post-modernism nor post-structuralism. Post-modernism was not really articulated until 1979 (Lyotard, “The Postmodern Condition – a Report on Knowledge”). Derrida had given up philosophy and had become a celebrity by then.

    Postmodernism can be summed up as the period by which the belief in grand narratives was over. And capitalism, marxism, and class struggle would be 3 of the grand narratives which postmodernists would say were not longer believe and no longer operative.

    I don’t believe it does us any favours to collapse structuralism, post-structuralism, post-modernism, Frankfurt marxism and Gramscian marxism together. For a start, I would expect that any statistical analysis of academic publications in “the arts” in west in the last 25 years would contain 1000x more references to people like Derrida, Foucault, Lacan than they would contain to Marcuse, Adorno, etc.

    They exploitation of concepts such as “deconstruction” by anglophone academics in the last 30 years has not been primarily as a tool to bring about the destruction of the west. It has been far more petty than that: it served the careers of those who make money from demonstrating they are “clever” at understanding cultural artefacts. If western universities hadn’t had an explosion of useless subjects (film studies, media studies, women’s studies, queer studies, post-colonial studies, etc.) there would have been no feedback mechanism that rewarded these people. They would have remained in English and French departments, where they were oddities, rather like those odd professors who used Freud to produce their interpretations of novels).

    Once the economies of western countries collapse, the Ponzi scheme of degrees in useless subjects will also collapse (even if we were not 5 years into Great Depression 2.0, I believe the Ponzi scheme in degrees would eventually collapse). There will be a flight of students from universities, and those who do study will study real knowledge, not interpretational one-up-manship.

    To establish that the exploiters of Derrida were part of a grand Frankfurt School plot to destroy the west, one would need to show that the works of the Frankfurt School are foundationally and widely quoted within the works of post-structuralists and their acolytes. That, I contend, will not stand if investigated. And claiming that it is the case in the absence of evidence is to create a fictional enemy and accord them too much power. Indeed, it is assuming a conspiracy and ascribing organisational power, support and intention to a phenomenon that is best explained in terms of the economics of the university Ponzi scheme. The prevalent use of Derrida et al. has more to do with students flocking to quasi-serious “disciplines” that sound “more fun” than studying law, architecture, dentistry, history. If the university sector had not been massively expanded in the west (accompanied by a generalised cultural dumbing-down), no-one would know of Derrida outside of a philosophy department in France. And given the totally faddish nature of French philosophical fashions, he would have been a forgotten figure even there by now.

    The economic crash will serve to focus people’s minds. I hope to see a great number of Derrideans in the queue for unemployment benefit.

    Apologies if my comment is not as well-structured as the essay to which it is a response. I just typed it from start to finish, and don’t even have the time to re-read it let alone re-structure it.

    • You are a smart man to move into Technology and Finance. Can you deconstruct the “Ponzi Scheme” that is Finance in general and Wall Street, in particular, for us please. A serious question. Max.

      • All you have to do is go to YouTube and watch “What I Have Been Afraid to Blog About” parts 1-5. They can also be found on

        It’s 5 hours of this guy laying it out for you.

        You can also watch “All Wars are Bankers’ Wars” on YouTube. That one is a lot shorter.

        In a nutshell: the entire history of the US and all the wars we have got into have been when politicians here occasionally refuse to borrow our own currency at interest but instead want to print it ourselves without interest. When someone does that they get assassinated or they get us into a war. We’ve got into “fiat” currency like most of the rest of the world, and the only thing keeping the US afloat is first that the dollar is the world reserve currency and second that we are the kneecapper for the banking mafia that runs this [mess].

        The currency-rogue kneecapping industry is a brisk one, and our resources are funneled into this “enterprise” plus all kinds of black ops. The black ops also gets into smuggling of all kinds, and other mafiaesque stuff.

        The US will be allowed to fall and will be drained like a sore when we stop being so useful to the banksters anymore. All Ponzi schemes fail eventually and our time is near. We have a giant rotten dollar bubble and a lot of tasty natural resources for them to take.

        Hope that brightened your day a bit.

        • I must make a distinction between borrowing one’s own currency from a central bank at interest, and “fiat” currency. Fiat is based on nothing but faith. A country could have gold based currency and still be borrowing it. Two different things. But the reason why we went completely to fiat currency in 1971 was because we didn’t have the gold to pay off the French who wanted all their gold back at once that was stored here. Because we had spent it behind their backs!

          The Germans now want their gold back too. And we’ve been telling them they’ll have to wait. This can’t end well.

    • Can’t agree more.
      But one has to recognize that Foucauld was totally unaware of the Frankfurt School until later in life.

      I am working in the academic world and this content has waned. Nobody takes Derrida, Foucauld or the Frankfurt School very seriously anymore. Its too transparently playing the Race/Gender/Class card frivolously.

      Well, let’s see where the future takes us.


  4. Pingback: ZION'S TRUMPET » Truth – Philosophical Food for The Mind and Soul. Refuting Postmodern Bullshit.

  5. I love this essay, at now 61 I was one of the last of the “Grammar School” boys but the rot was setting in even then. We were told that ‘thinking for oneself’ was paramount, but the reality was soon demonstrated by the actions (rather than the words) of the teachers for whom ‘thinking for oneself’ was obnoxious and immature.

    Say one thing, do another – I had to grow up with this. One learned very quickly to bottle up one’s opinions in public, for only those with credentials could express a valid opinion, and as I approached those credentials, so they moved out of reach…..

    Somehow the glass ceiling was working against me too.

    I was supposedly fighting communism, but on behalf of closet communists and no wonder I was confused. At the age of about 30 I started studying history, at the age of about 50 I began to understand that much of published history is mendacious, then I discovered the internet……

    • The chieftest of the spoils of war is the writing of history.
      that is a quote but I cannot recall from whom. the post-world war II corporate white-wash of american and world history is a very good example of this. I am of the generation that was lied to by the fifth estate as to what was really ocurring in Vietnam. Had we been told the truth history would have been radically different, but looking back it appears that was part of the overall design.

      • [Pejorative redacted]. The bedrock of the West’s history, the Bible, was not written by victors, but by losers. It was patched into present form from the pre-exilic institutions of Moses and the Davidic kingdom by priests and rabbis (mysteriously guided by the Holy Spirit) who had been through the Babylonian Captivity.

        Also, as I look deeper into Confucius (whom I have taken to reading in the original rather than in translation), I am convinced that in him, as in Machiavelli, we have someone who wrote and taught because he’d lost his official “real world” job.

        A lot of historical and philosophic writing is done by losers. The winners are too often busy redistributing or administering what they have won.

    • Aahh, the Internet. The location of all data and knowledge and the tools to make sense of both. And one doesn’t have a priest looking over to make sure that thinking for oneself incorporates a smidgen of Vatican theory. Max.

    • I’m an ex-grammar school boy (ie English grammar school) too, 60 years, so maybe our experience is similar. I recall struggling against the system there, though I didn’t know what I was struggling against. I didn’t see it as a struggle for freedom of expression or even for the right to think what I wanted, and I still can’t see it in those terms – I wish I could, it might make me feel better!

      That said, school, university, and post grad prepared me for a life of toeing the line and for 20 years I toed a line that was easy to toe – I did it without thinking.

      Then reality intervened, suddenly, and the conflict between what I was supposed to do and what I felt needed doing was so great that it became impossible for me to function at work. My job became insane.

      It ruined my career and ruled out any allied alternative – I could no longer tell it like it was supposed to be told. Acting the part was just absurd, I had to tell it how it was.

      My guess is there’s an awful lot of pretending going on. The system is mostly floating on air, with very little foundation. Of those that do support it surely the majority do so only for what they can get out of it.

  6. For a long tme I viewed all these things (parts) as various traits of the modern Left. Incators and clues of today’s Leftists. But its important to look at them as symptoms; cohesive parts of the postmodernism it draws its sap from. Or mere symptoms, if you will. And in that way, maybe only that way, it makes some sense to critics and opponents alike. Thus to combat and call out leftists for practicing these traits is falling short of opposing the whole disease. Picture a school of fish swimming along o whereever the leaders are going. Many of the fellow travelers don’t know or care what the central motives are as they follow and swim along filling a spot. It changes enough to cover the tracks and keep them in the dark as to why the school is going where it is. So Leftists themselves just see and beleieve what they want. What is important is the school maintain its unified flow. T

    hat may be a stretched analogy, but it means that even many leftists don’t know the real roots. All their positions on issues are pieced out by the hiearchy as they move along. They don’t know and aren’t expected to. When we single their current positon on an issue it doesn’t get to the root of the problem with their ideology. (the rotten core)

    • Or as David Horowitz put it “The issue is never the issue.” Whatever the particular issue is that Leftists and Useful Idiots are marching on about (Gay Rights, Racism, Gun Control to protect children, Global Warming, etc, etc, etc), is never the real purpose or issue. Promoting homosexuality is about weakening the foundations of society attacking the traditional family unit and traditional sexual mores. If they really were concerned about homosexual rights, they would have marched on Castro’s Cuba for labotomizing homos, real human rights abuse of people who participate in homosexual behavior, for example.

  7. @Joe

    Thanks for sharing your view. As one who dropped out in disgust of not one but two PhD programs just before dissertation time at two elite universities, I can attest that your witness is genuine and your view sound. However, mind that this is not a scholarly article for peer review by a group of hen-pecking tea drinkers at the faculty lounge. It is a heuristic tool for a besieged people stuck in a foul labyrinth: a sort of Ariadne’s thread. As such, the yarn had to be spun quickly, the knots are rough, the original thread was too short in places and had to be supplemented from another batch, and so on.

    But this piece has one overriding advantage that hardly any peer-reviewed article in the social sciences and humanities has nowadays: it was written honestly. There is no tenure that hangs on it, or hope for a grant or for a publisher’s advance. No money exchanged hands in this endeavor. There is no fear of the consequences of poking at taboos — well there is, but it’s limited to the pseudo of the author’s pseudonym so that his pen won’t have to be muzzled the way it is for more mainstream diagnosticians such as Henson and Steyn. And there is one more thing – the author did spend years in various Oriental exercises to become self-aware, to distinguish between what the ego and the social conditioning and the emotions want to say, and between what a philosopher’s, historian’s and dramaturgist’s sacred duty once was and should be again: to discern by reasoning and then channel the truth. Not the truth of one’s emotions, or one’s checkbook balance, let alone some synthetic derivation from an ideology, but the transcendent truth (Voegelin echo here).

    For that reason, I did not do the thing you allege I did. I did not mention the word “conspiracy” nor stated that there is any formal connection, a joint plan, between the Marxists, the Frankfurtists, the postmodernists and the poststructuralists. I did not try to establish that the exploiters of Derrida were part of a grand Frankfurt School plot to destroy the West. To do so would have been to present a theory without marshalling enough evidence even for a hypothesis. It would have taken a detailed overview of at least 15 major names, whereas I presented an abbreviated view of five. The only connection I made between those five is that they operated within the same epoch, and the latter two had read and were influenced by the former three.
    I did not allege evil intent, except for Derrida and Foucault, and even for them I’d not say that either had as grand a design as “destroying the West.” As to the Frankfurt School and Zinn it’s quite the opposite, and that’s the source of my disagreement with MacDonald. Whereas he took a bunch of facts and built a theory of evil intent around them, I know from the hundreds of leftists Jews I have met or read that their intent is overwhelmingly pure and idealistic – they just want to improve the world, “tikkun olam,” with no ulterior motives (leaving aside the small group of opportunists such as served the Russian NKVD etc.) That there are evil consequences to such repairing of the world is another matter, and that’s what I am after. BTW, Howard Zinn seems to have been a lovable, upstanding man, adored by hundreds who knew him in person, and that probably goes for most of the German-Jewish names I adduced. But that’s separate from the evil effects.

    Moreover, the viral infection simile I employ does not imply a conscious plan of infection. While Derrida had such a plan, it was with respect to the academic disciplines that were of interest to him, e.g. linguistics, logic, philosophy. That a viral plague ensued is the consequence mostly of the life-in-the-academia phenomena you describe. In the previous chapter I mentioned Gaetan Dugas, alleged to be “Patient Zero” in the AIDS epidemic. But Dugas too had no design to spread a lethal epidemic. He just wanted to have a good time with as many partners as possible.

    Your critique was good in that it points to what I must tighten in later chapters or in this one, when redacted for the book.

    Takuan Seiyo

    • “Not the truth of one’s emotions, or one’s checkbook balance, let alone some synthetic derivation from an ideology, but the transcendent truth (Voegelin echo here).”

      If the feeling of love is an emotion does it not define the fuel for the continued existence of mankind and consequently form the basis of elemental truth? Max.

    • Takuan Seiyo, I’m glad that my perspective on this is not unknown to you. I take your point. But “our situation is the product of Cultural Marxism coming to fruition” is a powerful narrative in the counter-jihad world, and your article may just fit too easily into that narrative. Those who propound and reiterate this narrative often do not have first hand experience within these areas. In some senses it is not 100% wrong, in other ways it is fairly harmless to believe it; however, it is so wide of the mark that it would be harmful if most of us believed it and set about focussing on that at the cost of other causative factors which have played roles at least as significant.

      I’m not entirely dismissive of “conspiracy theory”, but I am dismissive of those who want to deny there are any conspiracies. I don’t pretend to be any kind of thought leader in all of this. There are far too many things I can’t fit together yet.

      If you wish to ask for my input on any of this, you can contact me by 4F, or GoV can give you my email address. My particular knowledge is on anglophone philosophy, 20th century French & German philosophy, structuralism, post-structuralism, post-modernism, cultural studies, queer studies, film studies. I went from being a communist, to an anarchist, and now I’m interested in the work of people like Hayek and James Burnham (I still don’t see myself as “right-wing”, just as someone opposed to collectivism).

      I have in mind to write some books, but in the realm of history, where I think we need more shovels. There’s been so many lies and misrepresentations that more uncovering the past is needed, but then we have to start articulating how to get to a better future than that which is coming down the road.

      • Re: ‘It is so wide of the mark that it would be harmful if most of s believed it and set about focussing on that at the cost of other causative factors which have played roles at least as significant.”

        I’d not agree with you here. Islamization is the product of Cultural Marxism, and I speak as one who tasted both Islamization and Marxism in person, both the hard and the “cultural” variety, in several Asian and African Muslim countries, in Europe on both sides of the Iron Curtain, in the United States, and even in their curious Japanese mutations. But I agree with you that that was not the sole causative factor.

        I have made several references in this work to complex military maneuvers of envelopment, double envelopment., “5th generation warfare” etc. That alludes to the variety of the forces and tactics arrayed against us; some by collusion, some by chance, and others because that is perhaps a dialectic that any rich, powerful and jaded culture generates whose inner fire has burned out. I mean to describe the whole battle theater, with all the forces in the field, in the next two chapters.

        Takuan Seiyo

        • “Islamization is the product of Cultural Marxism”.

          I think you will have trouble proving that. But then I will at least expect to see you try to prove it. Most who make this claim are clutching at straws. I attribute the 20th century islamisation of Europe to the capitalists and the political class (who mostly are not Marxists). I think that Bat Yeor is closer to the mark in explaining modern day islamisation than anyone else.

          FWIW, I think that process of islamisation long precedes the existence of Marxism. I think Marxism is a product of islamisation. To prove that will require a much wider historical perspective, hence the shovelling I see is needed.

  8. Quote:
    I spent years studying how it was that post-structuralims became the dominant paradigm in so many disciplines in western academia. By the time I finished my research, I decided there was no point in even trying to seek a career in acaademia, because there was no work unless one toed the party line.

    I have suffered the same disappointment.
    I encountered two things that poisoned whatever academic ambitions I may have had.
    1. The irrational privileging of postmodern ideologies
    2. The equally irrational privileging of students, e.g. negotiating for grades, the student end-of-semester critiques submitted to departmental and university authorities.
    My impression was that the institution was assembling the tools of blackmail.
    I have an uncompromising attachment to democracy, I’ve always believed that the teaching and learning experience, regardless of where it happens, must be a democratic exercise or it is meaningless.

  9. @Max

    Love as the fuel for the continued existence of mankind is perhaps what the lesbian pastor in your local Peace, Justice and Equity church teaches on Sundays, but it’s certainly no such fuel. It is a potent and positive fuel additive, and served Christian civilization very well, as long as there were other, harder and more structured edifices that served as its trellis. Primarily virtue, valor and manhood.

    Now, virtue and valor are gone, except among professional killers that we call commandos, SEALs, Deltas etc. And they are each capable of smothering an exploding grenade with his body, not because of love, but because of a complex bond of loyalty and fidelity to their not-very-lovable comrades.

    Love is now everywhere, gushing yin bleeding for the “downtrodden.” It has become half of the content of Christianity and almost the entire content of Judaism. But the sturdy trellis is gone; love is now not an ornamental rose but wild, smothering kudzu.

    See the evil that “love” brings in this, “The Love Song of Edward Kennedy”. And Kennedy was a serious Christian, knowledgeable about and devoted to his faith. Johnson too, perhaps even a greater destroyer than Kennedy and a vile man personally, conducted his policies as a loving Christian (and son of a minister), by love – for the underprivileged, the poor, the black etc. And his “Great Society” and the civic legislation he signed in 1964/5 are what smashed the main pillar from under our roof.

    Give me reasoning, give me simple decency and the stoic conscious pursuit of virtue and avoidance of vice — by means of Socratic (or rather Epictetan) self-examination, over “love.” Maybe not always, not in Jesus’ times, not under the main left dictators, but nowadays. There is one land parched for want of love: Dar-al-Islam. The day they discover love, it may indeed become a fuel for their stunted civilization.

    Takuan Seiyo

    • Before you mock Christianity using Ted Kennedy and LBJ, could it be that the Old Serpent continues to exploit the “arum” (“naked” or “guileless”) character of the original Adam?

      It is one thing to have a fundamentally true system in which some elements are false or falsely and badly used; another to base oneself on a lie while hanging a few true elements on it.

      • @Kepha

        If you have problems with my approach to Christianity, you also have a problem with America’s Founding Fathers, Isaac Newton, Gibbon, Albert Schweitzer, and a thousand other men rather greater than you . I refer you to a previous chapter where I dealt with all that.

        For the future, I require that unless you can warrant you have studied the New Testament in at least two of its pertinent languages: Koine Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew, plus have read at least two books by a competent historiographer of Christianity such as Bart Ehrman, keep your comments about Christianity to yourself. What you learned when you were nine years old, however bolstered it may be by decades of confirmation bias, is of no interest to the larger public.

        If my comments about Christianity offend your personal beliefs, don’t read what I write. Throwing things back at me is silly; you are not equipped for the battle.

        Takuan Seiyo

        • Gents, I was just waxing a little pedantic in the sense that when I see a beautiful woman I am overcome with emotion which instantly and instinctively, initiates a chemical reaction, the inevitable outcomes of which are (1) procreation which keeps mankind going, (2) rejection which leaves me emotionally deflated but out of jail (women are not allowed to reject in Islam), or (3) perhaps arrest as a consequence of my lack of control of my emotions (said arrest will not occur within Islam as women are possessions and consequently are guilty of the crime of disobedience under Sharia). It is about emotions. I was being cheeky with the scribe, the first opportunity to throw a pebble.
          This then gives rise to a more important perspective, which ultimately proves the scribe correct, which is that Christians are generally encouraged to seek their partners freely, and typically as a consequence of the emotion of love (and I’m aware that it is argued that lust is not an emotion), whereas in Islam women have no stature beyond chattel and are assigned to partners (generally cousins and other close family members within the larger tribal structure). Inbreeding has its societal consequences and has been rife in Islamic culture for centuries.
          My message is that life decisions based on the primitive instinctive, emotion of love gives us better outcomes than those based on control. When I am confused about the vagaries of life and society I close my eyes and I imagine the first man and the first woman sheltering in the cave. There is a small fire providing a little light in the recesses of the cave aside which the first woman, with a small swell to her belly, cooks a strip of meat from the small animal the first man, who is glowering out at the emptiness in a defensive posture, killed that afternoon. It’s the Celt in me. I will kill to feed and protect my family and my culture which springs from it. Max.

          • I am not in disagreement with this take on things, but note that there are complications. There is little evidence that “love” as we understand it existed in a similar sense in Western culture prior to the 11th century. The way you seem to relate to it, which is also my way, immanent in my native and highly romantic Eastern European culture, likely did not exist until the onset of German romanticism in the 18th century.

            Much that is defined as “love” is really the fog of lust that eventually dissipates. Yet it’s still an emotion, nay, probably the most potent force there is. As are all those other potent forces you iterate: love for the children, protectiveness of family, the push to perpetuate your genetic code etc. Moreover, one of the aims od this work is to revive once-powerful emotions that have gone the way of the dodo: love of one’s soil and the impulse to protect it.

        • Takuan, I have a Master of Divinity degree from Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, and read the New Testament REGULARLY in Koinee Greek, thank you. I also read the Septuagint. As for your mention of Bart Ehrman, I think his Loeb Classical Library edition of the Apostolic Fathers infinitely inferior to the earlier edition by Kirsopp Lake (Ehrman loses himself in post modern irrelevancies, such as apologizing for the “patriarchialist” stance of his subject matter). Come to think of it, his notes are inferior to those of Archbishop Ussher’s from the 17th century, come to think of it.

          As for the Hebrew New Testament, produce an ancient one for me, please–although I own and sometimes use Dr. Franz Delitschz’s translation. I’m glad you honor the Aramaic version, but please identify a known edition older than the versions commonly called Syriac (Tatian’s 2d century Diatessaron Harmony of the Gospels; the Peshitta). Granted, sometimes the oldest existing texts aren’t the urtexten (as is known from some of the famous papyri from Egypt), but please inform me of extant Semitic versions older than the ones I’ve mentioned. I would be most curious AND grateful.

          The last sentence is one hundred and fifty percent sincere.

          I am always amused by those who choose the seat of the scornful blithely assuming that those of us who take the Christian faith seriously (especially if Protestant) have to be ignorant of the Scriptures in their original languages.

          Of the historical name-dropping in which you engage, Isaac Newton spent a lot of time trying to unravel Scriptural prophecies; several of the American founders were orthodox Protestants (George Read of Delaware, Roger Sherman of Connecticut, John Jay of New York for starters).

          • I do not doubt your proficiency in the version of the truth you studied and internalized. I doubt your taking umbrage at those who subscribe to a different version of the same truth – and I am staying just within the confines of Christianity.

            The Aramaic and Hebrew are not necessary to read the whole New Testament in – obviously, it was written in (different grades of) Greek, so that would be the most reliable version. Knowledge of the Semitic languages is necessary to understand what you read in the Greek NT, so that you know where what’s written could not have been possibly said as written, or why there are significant differences in the four Gospels, or what the words or terms Amen or Hosanna or alma or Son of Man really mean, or why 666 really stands for Emperor Nero rather than for some future Satanic apparition (you have to know the Hebrew alphabet for that) and so on.

            Somewhere in the comments you relayed that you consider the Scriptures divinely inspired. I do too, but only to the extent that I consider some musical compositions divinely inspired (Bach, Beethoven etc). I suspect that we have a very different view on that; I am not jumping on you because of your view; I don’t care for your jumping on me.

            I have already devoted in this work a whole chapter and parts of others to the practice of Christianity in Colonial America, so there is no need for you to drop off names of the orthodox Protestants; we know all that. The issue is that the most important ones weren’t, and even those who were, e.g. John Witherspoon, were far more tolerant of the rationalist view of Christianity than you were in the comment I objected to.

            As to Ehrman, I am sorry; what you write about what he writes is the candle calling the sun dim. I am not an acolyte; I don’t believe the man is without blemish – there was only one such man in history, to the best of my knowledge. But an educated, well rounded person reading Ehrman, if free of political programming or religious fanaticism, can separate the gold from the dross. There is plenty of gold there for me.

            Please leave Mussulmanist-like zealotry at home. I respect your faith; you respect mine.

  10. Thank you Takuan Seiyo for another dissection of the pretentious.

    Pardon a plain and possibly clumsy comparison.

    One benefit of coping with an academic environment is the pragmatic experience of dealing politically on a local level with the fantasists who are Derridoodlig their way along the tortuous paths of professional advancement. They can be recognized by their execrable grammar, malnourished vocabulary–except in their ”specialties”–and their tendency to sprinkle their conversation with “words of power” like ten-syllable technical words, foreign phrases and obscure statistics. What practical effect their thoughts may have on their students, beyond advancing impractical social theories, is not a consideration. Whether their students are learning to think critically or simply lazily is of no concern.

    Their uniting principle in all endeavors–ethereal or mundane–is a kind of misty-eyed narcissism. There is, after all, a reason it is called the “ivory tower.” The “good of the community” has less to do with actual people than with the ideal conceived in “the life of the mind.”

    They will conjure with all the names in the above article, and will waste little or no time on such an exhausted, ill and physically unimpressive philosopher-poet as Friedrich Schiller, who despaired of matching the effortless genius of his friend, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Who, but for specialists, remembers his theory of drama and poetry? Who but aficionados recalls his gripping ballads like “The Bell” and “The Pledge”? And yet, which of the great names mentioned above can lay claim to having inspired anything as stupendous and lasting as the choral version of his ode to humanity’s unflagging hopefulness. as it is ensconced in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony? And which of them can claim to having universalized the legend of William Tell and inspired the Rossini overture that can still inspire Italians and all opera lovers to head-nodding and foot-tapping? To say nothing of a generation of children who identified it with the exploits of the Lone Ranger?

    A simple man in many ways, a rebel against tyranny in his own life, and a man who appreciated courage and patriotism. But instead of contemplating the lessons of his life and poetry, and what they generated, the dilettantes direct their attentions to the professional purveyors of silliness. How could such an institution fail to prepare our degeneracy?

    G. E. Lessing

  11. Thank you for this. I first encountered deconstruction in the 80s. Until then I was innocently and ignorantly trying to make sense of my chosen discipline in rational ways. All this new ‘theory’ started to pour in and I got the distinct impression that I could see the emperor’s private parts, but this article helps me to realise that Derrida, Foucault and all those who peddled this intellectual self-abuse actually had a real and positively destructive purpose in mind. Perhaps now it enables me to make sense of it. I become very emotionally disturbed when things aren’t in accord with reason. At least there’s a smidgin of reason, even if perverse, in deliberately being destructive.

  12. A virus doesn’t have to be intentionally propagated to be effective. It simply has to replicate itself efficiently — that is, to make copies of itself more rapidly than they can be destroyed — within its given environment.

    This is just as true in our modern meme-space as it is within pond scum. Ideas that are replicated efficiently within their host substrate drive out their rivals and — if they are especially virulent — destroy their host. Derrida and Foucault need not have intended this result for it to have occurred: their ideas could just as easily become destructively viral without their having planned that result.

    The same is true of Islam. It is a particularly virulent and deadly meme, one of far more ancient lineage than Deconstruction and likely to far outlive the latter. Yet how plausible is it that Mohammed — or the cabal of warlords who invented him — thought, “I’ll generate a mind-virus that will destroy entire civilizations”?

    Mindfulness is not a prerequisite for any of this. No one involved need have any motive beyond the immediate gratification of whatever bodily lusts preoccupy one’s conscious thoughts. The meme simply spreads, regardless of any individual’s intentional actions.

    I find an instructive model in Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson.

    • Hopefully I’m not too late to this discussion of memes for my post to get noticed, but I have found in my own personal intellectual journey that the paradigm of memes offers a straightforward and elegant explanation for everything going on in the world today.

      And I don’t mean the aborted concept of memes that is promoted on the TED Talk circuit by Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennett. I’m referring instead to a full theory of memes, built up from first principles, starting with their introduction in the “The Selfish Gene”; but then doing something that R. Dawkins was apparently incapable of doing, and that was to apply the selfish-gene concept he had just proposed to his concept of memes. Then, logically build up from there a theory of memes pulling from the fields of information theory (math & physics), AI, computer systems design, biology and genetics.

      Whether it’s genes or memes, it’s all just coded information for the creation of self-organizing and self-replicating entities; genes code for life forms, memes code for thought patterns. It follows then, that for every process or relationship one finds in the biological realm, there should be a counterpart or equivalent one in the meme realm.

      A simple example of this “equivalency” game is to start with the common notion of a meme as a virus, but then ask, “What is a virus?” A virus isn’t just a glob of DNA/RNA. It’s a shell that acts as a delivery system for a small snippet of genetic code. A given virus can only attack certain cells within a narrow range of species. It has to have an attachment point to gain access to a cell’s interior, and once inside, that virus’s snippet of genetic code has to be able to trick the cell into incorporating it and replicating it. For a meme to infect a human mind the way a virus infects a cell, then everything about a virus that leads to a cell’s infection needs to have its equivalent in the meme/mind realm.

      Not only is a theory of memes built up this way perfectly descriptive of everything we are experiencing in the world today, it also has the attribute of being predictive. That is, given the dominant memes sets in play, it will tell you the possible behavior patterns that individuals will fall into. But most importantly for the purposes of this forum, it shows you the mechanisms you have to engage in society and in people’s minds if you want to change things.

      I’ll just try to give a simple glimpse of where a theory of memes leads to. I’ll start with Rodney@Feb16,9:29’s comment; “memes only exist in human minds so I don’t think they can really be separated from human agency.” But from the point of view of memes, that’s exactly wrong. In the paradigm of memes, it is the meme-sets themselves that are the active players; individuals are just inert carriers; irrelevant, replaceable, and disposable.

      To understand how this works, one needs to go back to Richard Dawkins’ book “The Selfish Gene” where he first introduced into the public consciousness the concept of memes; the main thesis of which was that the basic unit of evolution is not individual life forms but rather the genes and gene-sets that code for those individual life forms. In other words, R Dawkins’ thesis was that we had been misapplying Darwinian selection; that the actual working unit of Darwinian selection is the gene-sets, not their corresponding life forms. To paraphrase Mr. Dawkins, a chicken is the chicken-gene-set’s way of making more copies of itself.

      The step in logic that R. Dawkins apparently could not take was applying his concept of the selfish-gene to his concept of memes; that if done would have required him to assert that human consciousness is just a meme-set’s way of making more copies of itself. That just as Darwinian selection should be applied to gene-sets not life forms, Darwinian selection also should be applied to meme-sets directly and not to those individual humans who are only functioning as their carriers.

      I think the toughest part about a theory of memes for most people to accept is what it implies about one’s sense-of-self. For many people, their sense of individual identity is entirely tied to their physical body. But in a theory of memes, it is one’s thoughts that are primary, not one’s physical presence.

      Oddly, as a Christian (subspecies Confessional Lutheran) the theory of memes is an easy step for me. I’ve always thought of my body is nothing more than a mule that is carrying my spirit through this life and … that whatever it is that makes me, me, it has an extension that goes beyond my physical body and the short lifespan that has been allotted to me.

      So ironically, I think the people who are most able to grasp (from the pov of a theory of memes) what is going on in the world today are those who already see it as a spiritual battle. The ones I worry about are the secularists like Pat Condell. As eloquent and insightful as he is, the fact that he categorically rejects the spiritual aspect of life means that (again from the pov of a theory of memes) he has rendered himself powerless to effect any actual changes in the world.

      And just as a footnote, in the paradigm of memes, what we call our sense-of-self can be seen as that layer of programming that writes itself as we grow from infancy to adulthood and the memes that make us, us, try to come to terms with the genes that make us, us.

  13. Deconstruction and the like sometimes seem to take a profound insight and go overboard with it. The profound insight is that, from one point of view, everything we perceive is our own construction.

    The mistake is to conclude from this that the constructions are all equally subjective.

    As a favorite thinker of mine said,

    “…thinking must never be regarded as merely a subjective activity. Thinking lies beyond subject and object. It produces these two concepts just as it produces all others. When, therefore, I, as thinking subject, refer a concept to an object, we must not regard this reference as something purely subjective. It is not the subject that makes the reference, but thinking. The subject does not think because it is a subject; rather it appears to itself as a subject because it can think. The activity exercised by man as a thinking being is thus not merely subjective. Rather is it something neither subjective nor objective, that transcends both these concepts. I ought never to say that my individual subject thinks, but much more that my individual subject lives by the grace of thinking.”

    • The Renoir depicts an organic reality in which a still-healthy culture finds beauty and coherence in the mundane life. It’s not a sanitized life; I mentioned in a footnote when I first introduced these icons that the owner of the “moulin” shown in this paintings had been hanged by the German military in the Franco-Prussian war, just a few years before Renoir painted the place. Renoir himself would spend the last decades of his life in great physical suffering, but he continued painting the beauty he saw around him.

      The Grosz painting shows a world upside down, in which all traditional values have been inverted, nihilism and decadence infect the land, strife and chaos are rampant. That was the world of the Weimar Republic, and this is the world into which we are coasting.

      In a way, the Renoir stands for the “bee” in the title, and the Grosz for the “lamb,” or rather for the inevitable consequences of our ovinitiy.

      Takuan Seiyo

      • To some extent the history of Western painting seems to be a coherent process unfolding according to a sort of necessary sequence — perhaps somewhat as the mental “structures” of maturing children unfold according to a necessary sequence (if Piaget is right in his account of child development).

        Ancient Greek and Roman painting has not yet totally distinguished the inner and outer worlds, but focused increasingly on the physical world, which, at least among the classic Greeks, was still somewhat enchanted with spiritual power and glory. Early Christian painting continues not to distinguish very sharply the physical and spiritual worlds, but adds spiritual and Christian themes and symbologies.

        During the late medieval period, artists struggle increasingly to look more exclusively at the physical world. In the Renaissance this drive to see and understand the physical on its own terms, severed from all non-physical and religious factors, develops and intensifies through people like da Vinci and Michelangelo, who took leaps in the understanding of physical anatomy. Then the Baroque, while including the new, heightened knowledge of space and the physical world, in some ways rebelled against the sobriety and classicism of the Renaissance, and added disequilibrium, dynamism, emotion, much detail, and drama. This reaction to the restraint of Renaissance classicism is again heightened in the Rococo period’s excess of ornament and lush and florid detail. As a reaction to Rococo, neo-classicism arises, and then against that, Romanticism arises on a yet higher turn of the spiral.

        From the Renaissance through Romanticism, one sees a sort of historically undulating alternation between formalism and phases of more expressionistic, sensual, free emphasis, an alternation by which the West very gradually cultivates, explores, develops and liberates individual awareness from pre-individual collective, traditional forms of awareness. From Renaissance classicism, to the Baroque/Rococo, to neo-classicism, to Romanticism, it’s as if the boundary between self and world were being repeatedly explored and crossed, back and forth, back and forth, in a half-conscious effort to attain self-knowledge and more individualized consciousness. Yet the alternation between the various stages of classicism/formalism on the one hand and the stages of a more expressionistic, romantic, dynamic approach on the other, seems to be an alternation between two modes of subjectivity, an alternation subconsciously seeking to understand and fathom subjectivity, and by the same token to attain something beyond it.

        After Romanticism, the last reaction to classicism, a kind of Realism emerges. Painters at that point seem to have finally swum around in and sufficiently explored various kinds of traditional forms of perception and subjectivity to begin to incline toward something free of subjectivity, free of any traditional symbols and ideas and formal or romantic authorities. Painters simply want to see more nakedly than ever before. So a movement toward self-conscious “realism” emerges. But this effort is so in earnest that it leads in almost the next historical moment to a slight inward turn, executed by the Impressionists. In the effort to fathom what they are seeing, they turn inward, into the eye itself.

        But in moving slightly inward in that way, they find a form of mind that, more than any previous painterly mentality, is free of assumptions, beliefs, and symbols. Impressionists pay such close attention to what they see, that they begin to paint, not the “outer” world, but something like the inner surface of the eyeball in all its evanescence.

        But Impressionism takes place at the boundary where the eye meets the perceptual activity of the mind. Impressionism doesn’t actually paint “impressions.” It looks so closely at things that it rediscovers them as activities. It paints not apples or atomic “impressions”, but the process of “appling.” It paints not grass, but “grassing.” This is a realm of transformation, of death and rebirth, of creative process, where the sense-perceptible and the mind or the spiritual are discovered (for those with the eyes to see) to be interprenetrating and one.

        With the Post-Impressionists, such as Van Gogh, the painter’s observation then moves a bit further inward — the post-Impressionist is painting somewhat less of what the retina sees, and somewhat more of mind and ideas. But because the impressionist and post-impressionist visions have emerged so gradually from the most intense living observation, the “ideas” the post-impressionist paints often have the inexhaustible richness of living perceptual realities fully seen — they are not mere inventions, or arbitrary abstractions.

        Then from the Post-Impressionists we come to the Expressionists, who begin to depart even more from the perceptual world, but still retain a certain living connection with it. This is the point where a danger of nihilism really starts to come in. The Expressionists begin to cut so many ties with the perceptual world that less and less guides them. Nothing seems to compel them. Having moved so far inward, in tune with a vast historical process unfolding with a curious inner logic, the German expressionist feels more and more thrown back on himself alone for the content of his painting. But through oneself alone it is difficult to rediscover objective sources of meaning. Yet that seems to be the challenge for human beings into the future: to discover the sources of spiritual meaning from within. For some, that could mean a rediscovery, though in an individualized way, of their own spiritual traditions. For others, it could mean a complete departure from traditions. But in either case it means a turn to experience and away from authority.

        For the early expressionist painter, all the given structures and colors seem to be collapsing. He still often paints brilliantly, because he has within himself the history of painting, to one or another extent. Yet he paints in an increasingly arbitrary fashion. He begins often to paint meaninglessness, because he often fails to rediscover the world’s meaning from within, apart from authority and tradition and what the outer world can impose.

        Then people begin to make a transition to abstraction and “non-objective” painting. Inevitably, painters come to the point of wanting to cut all ties to outer perception. They try to move toward something that has no imitative source, something that is supposed to be pure creativity. Kandinsky was an impressionist and then an expressionist, and only gradually tried to go purely abstract. Some love Kandinsky’s abstractions. I think he to some extent lost the link to anything fully living when he cut the ties to perception in the way he did. But the point is, he is the end of a long process of painters spiraling round and round exploring the relation between outer and inner, not in a repetitive way, but each time at a higher turn of the spiral.

        Partly in reaction to the self-conscious emergence of “Realism,” painters begin increasingly to consider Plato’s notion that painting merely makes a feeble copy of what nature does best. Was that all painting could do? Realism? A feeble imitation of nature’s glories? Moreover, photography had appeared as well, and could do a better job of mere imitation than could a painter. The evolution of individualized awareness over the course of centuries and millennia leads more and more painters to recognize that some kind of creativity — not mere imitation — must be centrally involved in the painter’s vocation.

        This leads to the drive to cut ties to the perceptual world, as in Kandinsky. But I think Kandinsky more or less failed in that respect. If one is no longer going to “imitate” or reproduce the outer perceptual world or even living perception of it, one will become barren and impoverished unless one finds a way to experience and then paint living non-physical realities, not a world of mere abstractions. To perceive a living spiritual world, which will be ever in process of creation, one must find disciplined ways of becoming more purely creative so that one can enter and experience those worlds. Such creativity is not at odds with imitation. One’s own creative process and spiritual activity is the lens through which one perceives and can imitate those worlds.

        Many of the abstract painters did not have any clear or strong perceptions of living spiritual realities, and thus tried instead to get away from outer imitation negatively, i.e., by mere elimination, reduction, simplification — till you get blank canvases presented as works of art, or canvases with three color planes and nothing else, or canvases of almost pure chaos, without any recognizable shapes or forms. One also got canvases with very simple, pared down geometric forms, supposedly “archetypal” or “essential” forms that the artist pretends reveal the purest essence of reality stripped of all the inessentials. I think of Mondrian’s little colored rectangles. But those rectangles and those colors are just one lens, and an incredibly impoverished one, for looking at the essence of a reality that is inexhaustibly rich. Even if one wanted to pretend that the essence of reality is only geometric, and everything else is inessential, still, there is so much more to geometry than rectangles!

        In my view, the early abstract painters mostly failed, because instead of employing all the resources of color and form supplied by reality, they tried to reduce down to some supposedly more minimalist and static essence (even Pollack’s supposed dynamism is actually rather static or uniform, a repetition of flying drops everywhere, not really a metamorphosis of diverse forms or colors into one another), instead of seeking to maximize qualitative and formal richness as happens in processes of metamorphosis and transformation in which no qualitative and formal possibilities are permanently or totally excluded.

        • I ask you, where can you find so many smart, educated readers?

          I have little expertise in painting, unlike the house patron here. I just know what I like and what I don’t like, plus biographies of the great ones, plus time spent in the great museums. But your analysis strikes me as spot on. BTW, in the book I referred to, by Stephen Hicks, he sees dadaism as the arts’ manifestation of postmodernism, and appearing at about the same time too. If you think about it, there is a direct line from Duchamp’s 1917 “Fountain” and Serrano’s 1987 “Piss Christ.”

        • A painter’s work is inevitably a reflection off of his philosophy or lack thereof, whether or not those ideas have been consciously considered. This is true of art in any medium.

          Consider Musashi’s work.

  14. Did Foucault and Derrida believe that Marxism would have led to a better world? Most probably. It’s hard to deny that there have been individuals who are noth idealistic and subversive, without any (in their view) “bad” intentions… however, could such individuals have not received a gentle “nudge” from somewhere, in the form of funding for lobby groups?

    As has been mentioned before, those in the “counterjihad” have a tough time, because not only are they concerned about the Religion of Peace and want to counter it – but they (mostly) have jobs, and kids to look after… meaning hardly no time to fight the Islamisation that threatens us. The most effective “fighters” in this regard would be dedicated activists – someone who has the money to make fighting Islamisation a full-time job. Robert Spencer or Pamela Geller being two such people. But how many others…?

    Leftists on the other hand seem to have time to organise endless letter-writing campaigns, phone calls, canvassing, sticking up posters on university walls etc. Are these all similarly people with wives and kids and jobs? Or are they unemployed university students? Or could some be receiving a small amount of money from some source to spread their wonderful progressive opinions?

    This 1-hour talk by the ex-KGB agent Yuri Bezmenov explains the KGB’s strategy in this regard… just 15% of their resources was concentrated on assassinations and blowing up bridges. This talk discusses the other 85% – the subtle attempts to support “friendly” elements in Western universities and other institutions… could this have been how “progressive” ideas started to get promoted, leading to them becoming so pervasive today?

    • The Left has a hard core of activists on welfare. I am on welfare, and often I do not have any money to buy anything. I have to beg from my father, mother and brother. I have nothing to lose. In the Netherlands, I am the person most hated by the radical Left. But their ideology cannot explain why I am more dangerous than Geert Wilders or Constant Kusters. That is why I am still alive.

    • Clearly, funding and propagandistic exhortation from the Soviets was part of the worldwide development and popularity of Marxist ideas. As soon as the Soviet Union collapsed, one noticed that Marxism suddenly became much less of a live option in global media and public discourse. Yes, the change in beliefs globally was in part because people looked at the collapse and thought, “gee, it doesn’t work.” But it was also because funding and Soviet propaganda suddenly dried up and was gone. A lot of people in the West were like more or less mental puppets manipulated by the Soviets. When the Soviet puppet masters were gone and no longer pulling strings, lo and behold, huge numbers of the puppets suddenly thought differently about communism.

      You’ll see the same if Islam ever collapses. Suddenly, a great deal of Western apologetics for it will mysteriously dry up and disappear. A good deal of it is there now only because Saudis and others are funding it, terrorizing on its behalf, propagandizing for it, and exhorting suckers in the West to defend poor “victim” Islam.

      As for Foucault and Derrida, I think they both believed in democracy and free institutions — I think they were, at most, social democrats of some sort, not hard core Marxists.

  15. I read Spengler’s Decline of the West years ago, but his idea of the morphology of culture still makes more sense to me than does any other explanation. Is it not possible to incorporate the assaults on the West as discussed by Takuan Seiyo into Spengler’s thesis and by so doing find guidance in how to oppose them?

  16. Couldn’t agree more Baron Bodissey I think you’ve hit the nail (a nail) on the head with that comment. The threat or “enemy” (whatever you want to call it) we face is not a secret cabal of illuminati masters holding anual general meetings where they discuss progress in world domination (“agent Foucault has accomplished his mission master”). The enemy is simply a meme, a very powerful, very effective, very destructive meme, spread by mostly sincere well meaning hosts. The question is is there any hope of a vacination before it is too late or can we do nothing more than simply chronicle the fall of a once great civilization.

    • There is no need for us to deny human agency, and no need for us to deny the force of circumstances. Even the determinist Karl Marx was able to say: men make history but not on grounds of their own choosing.

      It is obvious that most of the major decisions made in our democracies are not made by the people; they are made by a very small sub-set. And power-mad individuals will scrabble like dogs after a bone to get into that sub-set, and then to assert themselves within that sub-set. There are other small groups of powerful people within society who unknown to us are working to effect change or prevent change. Still, not all their plans will be put into effect, and even when they are put into effect, they will have unforeseen consequences. In the wider world, there are millions and millions of daily decisions made by ordinary individuals that collectively effect change.

      And that is all against a background of natural impulses that are often immutable, and against a shared history and culture that may hinder or enable certain changes.

      • “There is no need for us to deny human agency”

        Memes only exit in human minds so I don’t think they can really be seperated from human agency.

        I more saying what the Baron says below namley that “The preoccupation with conspiratorial explanations for the current mess we’re in is a waste of time.”

        There ARE powerful individuals in any number of organsiations consiously working for the rule of the social Marxist meme. There may even be a real secret society or two that none of us know about working for its rule. There are certainly plenty of not so secret society working for its rule.

        The point is these societies are not all powerfull all knowing impossible to oppose entities but rather as you yourself said “Even the determinist Karl Marx was able to say: men make history but not on grounds of their own choosing.”

        It is not that there is not considerable human agency at work. For example al Qaeda has shown considerably human ageny for example 911. But you can kill all the current al Qaeda leaders and that won’t stop a new Islamic terror cell rising up out of the blue and setting of a new major terror attack. One might think the new terror attack resulted from a super secret terrorist leader above both al Qaeda and the new terror group that US drones failed to identify and kill. Where as in fact the true uniting unfluence is the Islmaic meme as ambodied in the Koran.

        In World War II we fought the Meme of racial supremacy (German racial superiority in the West and Japanese racial superiority in the East). In that case when we defeated the human agents militarily we also deleted the Meme.

        In the cold war we fought against the Meme of economic Marixism (whatever you want to call it).

        Some Memes such as Islam and Social Marxism cannot be destroyed simply by militarily conquering an army of human agents here or there. In both cases the lack of central leadership means that you can’t just take out a central leadership or force them to surrender and you’ve conquered the meme. The adherents to the meme will go on working for it even when a particular leadership is removed.

    • The preoccupation with conspiratorial explanations for the current mess we’re in is a waste of time.

      If an all-powerful secret conspiracy is responsible for our destruction, then debating it and engaging it are pointless. If it is all-powerful, opposing it is impossible, and its secrecy will remain unassailable. The very premises of the assumption guarantee failure.

      If, on the other hand, the cultural quagmire in which we find ourselves is the result of more mundane causes — mostly corruption, driven by a few power-hungry ideologues who harness the widespread venality — then it can be resisted without discovering the Grand Conspirator, without exposing the “man behind the curtain”.

      If the meme propagated by our enemies is more appealing than our own, then they are stronger than we are, and we will lose in any case. If their meme is weak — which I believe to be the case — then they are weak, despite having their hands on the levers controlling an unimaginable amount of political power.

      The case is similar with Islam. It is a actually collection of memes, all of which are weak. Their virulence has only been maintained through the “death to apostates” meme — which, as acknowledged by Qaradawi, is the sole reason that Islam did not die in its infancy.

      Islam cannot survive the mass exposure of its essential weakness. Our job is not to keep haring after needless distractions, but to patiently propagate our own memes, which are strong.

      Yes, Obama may well have been born in Kenya. Yes, the strings of major Western political leaders are probably being pulled by a combination of the Bilderberg Group and the Muslim Brotherhood. But to be preoccupied with such matters, to spend valuable time trying to track down all the details, is to lose sight of what will be effective in the long run.

      They are weak. Their house of cards, constructed so carefully over the past century, is on the verge of collapse.

      It’s more important to build on our “shadow” culture, to propagate our own ideas and values. They are strong and durable, and will succeed in the end, despite the horror that must precede them during the chaos after the Collapse arrives.

      To quote Wretchard once again (comments seem to have been removed from his post since I originally collected this one):

      There must be hundreds of sites out there saying I’m a jerk. So what? This blog is just a meme, that’s all. I am nothing. I don’t even have a name. There must be zillions out there who disagree with my ideas. But so what? If my ideas are wrong they’ll die. If they are right, not even I can stop them. Scary when you think of it.

      • This preoccupation with who/what is at the epicentre of this “conspiracy” reminds me a little of “The Prisoner” – a 60s TV series I once watched. The main character – a British former agent who is abducted to “The village” – a secret location, where everyone has a number, wears uniform clothes, but has a comfortable lifestyle. In each episode, he tries to escape. Once by swimming, another time by trying to catch a helicopter, and several other attempts. Each time a baloon sent by “number 2” (the leader of the village) stops him from escaping by smothering him. And in each episode, the Prisoner asks “who is number 1?”, only to be told “You are number 6”. In the last episode, the Prisoner escapes, and finally finds Number 1 – in actual fact, it was himself.

        Back to real life – most phenomena on this planet have more than one cause. Perhaps (and lately I’m also suspecting this) the current “deconstruction” of the basis of our civilisation is due to a concerted effort – and the Russians, Saudis, Chinese or possibly others certainly have the resources to mount such an effort. However how much of this is also caused by aspects of our own civilisation and nature of being? We try to be nice, not to offend, have inclination to being defensive, and try to be part of a group… could these inclinations also be facilitating the deconstruction of our culture?

        The last aspect – “being part of a group” – is often something that middle-class teenagers in Western countries have a tendency towards. They will try to be trendy, to “fit in”. The athletic ones won’t have a problem – they’ll gain respect by being the “jocks”. The musical ones likewise – they’ll join a band and might even have a throng of female followers. But what about those (the majority?) being the moderate ones, not fitting into either category? They’ll need something else to make them stand out… hence many trying to portray themselves as “one of the people” by being left-wing or even joining groups like the (British) Socialist Workers’ Party? A certain “comedian”, going by the name of Johnnie Marbles, and infamous for throwing a foam pie at Rupert Murdoch, comes to mind… The Guardian even allowed him space for a defence of his actions. Alas, on this occasion, those commenting were none too impressed… But could this desire to do anything to be “cool”, driving him to perform such an act, not be also one of the reasons for why Western middle-class students often want to be seen as “progressive” – or, in any case, not ‘reactionary”?

      • All this is so simple to lay out for people with the minimum of unadulterated higher education that’s worth something, as opposed to the current kind. An introductory course in research methodology will take one past concepts such as dependent, independent and concomitant variables, and this golden rule: concomitancy does not demonstrate causality.

        There is no need to waste time on conspiracy theories because it’s based on attributing causality to a number of phenomena about which one can only know that they are concomitant. It’s a great and useful discovery to merely discover that some variables are dependent, e.g. the higher the number of university graduates the higher the propensity for liberal politics. But that is far from a valid observation of a conspiracy.

        On the other hand, I have a different view about “memes.” I don’t believe it’s just memes contending each with the other, out there. It’s the fire within of the meme pollinators that counts, their tactical smarts, and their number. Muslims have this in spades as do Progressives; both are dogmatic religions purporting to represent exclusively an infallible source. And we have to find our own power generator.
        Takuan Seiyo

        • Well, obviously there is more to the whole business than memes. Zeal (a.k.a. “fire in the belly”) is crucial to the “the turmoil of history”, as Ted Hughes put it. In fact, zeal is inextricably intertwined with the memes of Islam, since the core imperative for the Islamic believer is that he must have rageful, murderous zeal against anything that impedes the global dominance of Islam.

          On the other hand, we — modern, cultured, sophisticated, deracinated, rational Westerners — are burdened with an imperative not to have zeal. Fire in the belly is uncool, and being cool is the most compelling meme of all in a culture that has abandoned almost all public embrace of religion, spirituality, and meaning. Being ironic, disconnected, detached, and uncaring is all that’s left to many people, especially the young.

          If the only competing forces at work were zeal vs. irony, Islam would win hands down. Fortunately for us, much more is involved in the current praxis than that particular twilight struggle.

          • The Baron captures the symptoms:

            “Being ironic, disconnected, detached, and uncaring is all that’s left to many people, especially the young.”

            The DSM gives pretty much the same symptoms for a diagnosis:

            “Signs and symptoms common to all types of dissociative disorders include:

            * Memory loss (amnesia) of certain time periods, events and people
            * Mental health problems, including depression and anxiety
            * A sense of being detached from yourself (depersonalization)
            * A perception of the people and things around you as distorted and unreal (derealization)
            * A blurred sense of identity”

            Applied to a society, does not that describe a modern Westerner’s sense of life and lack of attachment to their culture? The “trauma” comes from and during their education in our current institutions.

            All that’s left is the treatment plan!

          • I am more the student of urban culture than of flyover country. What I see in American cities is a whole second layer of young people who are not merely cool, practicing the obligatory sarcasm they picked up in HS etc. I see whole neighborhoods of young white — always white– people who said FU to their country and their civilization. By the time they are 19 they’d received huge amounts of negative programming in schools — sort of what we used to call commie propaganda but with the postmodernist twist. Part of it is Boasian anthropolgy, and that is what’s on display, carved into their bodies. The tattoos are Polynesian, the ear plugs African. The body piercings in sensitive places are Mayan and the toe rings are Indian. And they pile them on in such grotesque size and quantity that it tells you these people don’t have a desire to ever hold a real job, support a family etc. They are the ideal fodder for socialist Dear Leader’s freikorps.
            Obviously we, the happy few, cannot be bothered by being few but still, I keep thinking what could spread the zeal to a large number of Westerners, particularly the young. I’ll take a stab at it in the last chapter of this work.

      • But how many of us could agree on what the good culture, the good ideas and values we need to be propagating are? We might have a common enemy but that doesn’t mean we otherwise have common political/religious views. For example I personally am an evangelical Christian (I use the word “evangelical” because it sounds a lot better than “fundamentalist” even though I do believe in all the fundamentals of the Christian faith). Unlike many in the anti-Islamisation movement such as Geert Wilders (who I admire and respect) I can’t really describe myself as either pro-gay or pro-feminist. Not that I wish to regulate other peoples nocturnal activities with the force of law (nor do I believe that the New Testament calls Christians to concern themselves with what those not of our faith are getting up to in the bed room) but I have a definite Christian moral view on such matters. Feminism and biblical morality is just one thing on which there would probably be quite a split among the anti-Islamisation forces. Even belief in God would be something we would be quite split on.

        You might say that religious matters should not be an issue and that the thing we anti-Islamisation peoples have in common is a desire for freedom and to respect each others right to their own religious and political view points. But then we are not that far from the social Marxists.

        The social Marxist meme takes a good idea “we are all equal” (whatever that means) and takes it to an extreme, an extreme that means in the name of not abusing people for being female we will probably have women being drafted to the front line in the US one day and that in the name of religious freedom you are not free to pray to God in any US public school. An extreme that means we try to psychologically castrate little boys to turn them into little girls (at least in Sweden), in the name of equality.

        But are we to say – that you are free to be Christian, or atheist or Buddhist but not free to be Muslim? How do we explain that to people.

        I think most of us can see that importing large numbers of Muslims into Europe will one day lead to a future with majority Muslim populations and hence Sharia law and hence no freedom. So not a good idea that. That’s just being realistic. But how do you put that into an acceptable meme “we are all equal but Muslims need to be equal in their own country”?

        • “You might say that religious matters should not be an issue and that the thing we anti-Islamisation peoples have in common is a desire for freedom and to respect each others right to their own religious and political view points. But then we are not that far from the social Marxists.”

          Many of us involved in 4Freedoms are convinced that we are failing precisely because we have not articulated a positive politics of freedom, a project that is to be counter-posed to the threat of collectivism (marxism, socialism, fascism, islam, national socialism). In 1943 Hayek outlined the threat that collectivism poses (it leads to serfdom). In 1961 he stated why he is not a conservative (conservatism is just a brake on those who do have a project, at that time the socialists in the west, and now islam is just adding to that collectivist project).

          I think we should drop all talk of “social marxist”, “cultural marxist”, etc. In the 30 years when I was mixing on a daily basis with communists, none of them talked in these terms. These are terms basically invented by those outside of communist to try and identify a more nebulous, softer form of communism. National Socialism was opposed to communism, but it was just as much of a threat to freedom as communism. If you wish to identify those in whakcademia who are propounding “social marxism” or “cultural marxism” you will find these are straw men. If you wish to turn students and future students away from these “social marxists” the students will think you are bonkers, as they will know that such people are not to be found: they are a chimera.

          When islam has the chance it will destroy communism and socialism (witness what happened in Iran, and read the hostility of Qutb to socialism). Unless that socialism is islamic socialism, in which case it is just islam.

          It is all these forms of collectivism which we should see as the enemy. We needn’t concern ourselves with why it is that sometimes muslims and socialists will work together. We need to see them all as the enemy. But then we need a project which builds a positive politics of freedom. Without that we will lose. Socialism has already defeated conservatism in the west. No-one heeded Hayek.

          If you described the contemporary British Conservative Party to a 1950s socialist, she would think it was a socialist utopia. Half the banks have been nationalised. Everything is taxed (they are currently discussing tax inspectors entering people’s homes to examine what possessions can be subjected to new taxes). The government bans marches and proscribes free discussion. The borders are open to foreigners who only have to arrive in the country with no documentation to be sure of staying here and being supported forever. A Conservative candidate has just been forced to resign for stating that National Socialism was a form of socialism.

        • “But how do you put that into an acceptable meme “we are all equal but Muslims need to be equal in their own country”?”

          A key point… but how was it that racism or homophobia came to be seen as so unacceptable? After all, they were normal traits in society, just a few decades ago… so, would it be impossible to portray Islam in the West as being similarly unacceptable? At the moment, perhaps that’s the case – we don’t want to be seen to discriminate against “other” religions, and certainly don’t want to be seen as racist… but what if we put the message out, successfully, that – 1) being against Islam is nothing to do with race, and 2) that importing millions of adherents of an ideology that says “fight the nonbelievers until they submit and pay the tax” is not a good idea? Will Islam stand a chance of defending itself? But to do that, you need to get those hordes of teenagers and students (especially the “intellectual” ones) tohear that message. How to do that – if not through films and books? Is it now so hard to see why Muslims get so worked up every time a book or film appears that they don’t like? And hence the other memes: that the West was racist, had slavery, is imperialistic, immoral etc are stronger, and the status of Islam grows…

          • There are too many important points in this thread to do justice to in a comment window. But this series attempts to grapple with such issues, particularly Christianity that I see as a potential unifying force many times as strong as it is now. However, it cannot be Christianity as presently represented in the spectrum of Christian denominations. More on this will follow.

            As to “acceptable” memes I don’t think we need to worry about what’s acceptable, except what’s acceptable to God. That’s why I devoted a lot of space in previous chapters to discuss America’s Founding Fathers and their intellectual-religious background. There is a natural right for a people to hold on to a territory in which its ancestors lived and for which they died. That right comes from God; it need not be justified.

            As to Green Infidel’s comment about how racism and homophobia came to be unacceptable, I’ll adduce what the Polish novelist-film scenarist Tadeusz Konwicki described about an encounter he’d had with an airhead German woman. He wandered, did she understand that the Holocaust (I use it in the plural, he in in the singular) wasn’t a normal heinous crime but something that had upended the entire moral order of the world? Is it understandable at all? After all, he says, it’s impossible to cope with this knowledge, this Holocaust experience. It poisoned our civilization and from that stem its nihilism, lostness and despair.

            There are well founded motivations to most of the plagues corroding us now. The issue is not that racism, homophobia etc. were good and we ought to restore them, but rather that the remedies deployed range from the silly to the evil. We have to offer our own remedies, within the realm of of a Christian civilization’s morality but without the sacrificial lamb complex that propels so many well-meaning Westerners to their doom.

          • @Takuan Seiyo – my intention was not to advocate a return to racism – rather, that an ideology such as Islam should be seen in exactly the same light as racism, or Nazism. An aggressive, bigoted ideology seeking to subjugate all others – as verses such as Quran 9:29 clearly indicate. And given that racism has come to be seen as so unacceptable, perhaps there is a grain of hope that the same will happen with Islam. But for that to take place, we need to get past the censorship that Islam tries to impose. Such censorship, together with Islam’s aggressive nature, being key weapons in combatting those who try to expose this aggressive nature. Meaning that Islam becomes stronger, and even more aggressive. Hence resulting in a “positive feedback” mechanism.

            A side-note about racism and “homophobia”: the latter has been a hot topic in Poland recently. Especially since voting on “civil partnerships” for gay (and straight) couples took place about 3 weeks ago. Contrary to the liberal media’s expectations, the bill was rejected – largely due to 46 rebels from the ruling party. Among them, Poland’s first black MP – John Godson. The reaction of the “tolerant” readers of Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland’s most liberal newspaper, being to call for Godson to “go back to Africa” or climb up a tree. The latest (and perhaps most colourful) example of such “tolerance” is an email to Godson, posted on his Facebook wall and recopied here

            Moral of the story – the fight against “racism” is not the be-all and end-all for the far-left elite. When faced with a choice to deconstruct one’s own culture, this takes precedence – even if it means calling a black man against such changes (the equivalent of) a n***er or telling him to “go back to Africa”…

      • Baron, I wholeheartedly agree with what you say. As a government teacher in an American public school, I am happy to report that I’ve gotten a roomful of kids to see that the “free stuff” they expect from Obama is actually paid for by others.

        • Green Infidel,

          “my intention was not to advocate a return to racism – rather, that an ideology such as Islam should be seen in exactly the same light as racism, or Nazism.”

          The problem in a nutshell is that the sociopolitical situation is (and has been for years) precisely the reverse of what you advocate. To be anti-Islam, and anti-Muslim, is seen by the Western mainstream as tantamount to racism and a nascent Nazism. Turning that Titanic ship around will be a gargantuan effort, and may not happen without Muslims committing horrific massacres among us in the coming decades — all of which could be prevented, if we just relocated our collective head.

          But let’s not get ahead of our lost head with flights of fancy that mistake a fashionable error with some kind of profound existential diremption — thus missing the pragmatic mark.

          • @Hesperado – If Hollywood directors could be persuaded to make films exposing Islam – not necessarily centered around portrayals of Mohammed, or other aspects that may exacerbate the Mohammedans’ fragile sensitivity – perhaps it would be possible to attain greater awareness of Islam’s Nazi-like attributes without the massacres of which you speak? The problem seems to be that today’s directors prefer to make films about wizards, witchcraft, monsters and just about anything apart from the very REAL threat which we now face…

      • Yes. We are engaged in a war of ideas, a multigenerational battle of memes. If we can dominate the memetic battlefield we win the war. THAT is the essential struggle. To be sure, those who believe in the ideals of the Enlightenment must be ready to protect themselves and their ideas. One critical area where we can take a page from our enemies is to establish private academies to propagate our ideas.

  17. Recently, without having read this author, it occurred to me that cultural Marxism might be thought of as societal HIV, with Islam the opportunistic infection. What hadn’t consciously occurred to me till now, strangely enough, was that the deconstruction virus would appear to have infected even science, in particular theoretical physics (which on reflection was likely to be a receptive host). Hey ho.

  18. Much has been said here to describe the way western civilization was atacked and sabotaged by a cultural virus designed by prizewinning bad guys . This image rings true in my mind , but dosnt go far enough .
    What about the imune system , why didnt i do anything effective to repel the invading sickness ?
    Several answers are possible to this strategic question . The virus could be of a completely new kind , but if that was the case , then ALL cultures would be vulnerable and not just the former-christian democracies . A better image would be for the virus to be specifically fitted with the ability to prevent the imune system of former-christian cultures from identifying it as an enemy . In our leal-life case , the pseudo- moralistic THEME of the virus is perhabs what confuses the imune system , who for thousands of years have lived with the moralistic theme of Christianity .
    The Idea that Political Corectness is a corruption of Christian morallity is not new , but when combined with the image of a designed cultural virus , and the failure of the imune system , it might lead us to ask new questions . Such as what exactly is the relevant paralel to an imune system in a nation state ?

    • This is a work in progress, actually a book published as a rough draft chapter by chapter. I have a plausible answer to your question, listing not one but some 40 causes. All that will be in later chapters.

      However, one principle insigtht for now is that Western Society was smashed from the Right quite as lethally as it was from the Left, though with no malicious intent. The problem is just as the last few paragraph in the above chapter elucidate: it’s pervasive lying, on both sides. When you read left-oriented content it has, among its propaganda lies, various truthful critiques of the Right. And when you read Right-oriented content, though usually truthful in its criticism of the Left, it’s lying by omission by consistently ignoring its own moral failures or errors and distortions in doctrine and deed. Read the Wall Street Journal or watch Fox News for a few days, keeping this in mind.

      Generally, what’s know in the US as paleo-conservatism seeks to cut itself off from various Right dysfunctions, but even it does not go far enough.

      Takuan Seiyo

      • I drew the same conclusions years ago. The “radical left” (communists) and the “extreme right”(national socialists) tell more or less the truth about each other, but tell lies about themselves.

  19. I can see why Hicks places Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” as the source of postmodernist thinking. The noumena–what is really “out there” in reality–can never be approached directly, for we interpret everything through our third party sense organs: our eyes and ears, smell and touch, etc. Reality to us is always a mixture of the noumena and our interpretation of it….but wait !…could it only be our interpretation? Could we be brains in a vat? Therefore we can make the world what we wish. And surely all wishes and wants are relatively equal. There is no wiah that could be superior to another. Relativism arises here.

    Everything in postmodernism falls out from this idea except for one: the peculiar leftish slant of all its practioners. Even Hicks marvels and wonders about this. They didn’t all have to be socialist, communist, leftist. What caused this? No answer was given in Hicks book except that he implies that they were all leftist to begin with and seized upon Kant’s idea to support their politics.

    I think we can go back and revisit Kant’s paradox….i.e. we can re-argue whether or not there is really something “out there” beyond our sense organs’ and their recordings of it. This time we can win the argument and show that we are not brains in a vat. We can use some interesting ideas from physics about time to do this. Then we can start deconstructing the edifice of postmodernism itself.

  20. While Seiyo shows some competence in the recent French philosophy of Derrida and Foucault, and while he even makes some telling remarks on the corrosive effects of their methods and their social critiques, he clearly has a very limited and distorted understanding of the German tradition in philosophy, whose most powerful exemplar in our time is to be found in Martin Heidegger. If the current crisis in western thinking is to be overcome it will come about by pursuing the paths Heidegger opened up. As for members of the original Frankfurt School, they were impelled by anti-German sentiments from the beginning. During the War, and for decades after 1945 their writings were eagerly taken up by the Anglo-Saxon liberal elite as well as by Marxists to criminalize the entire German people. But now the chickens have come home to roost, and this same elite is surprized to find that their history now stands before the bar of marxist defined historial judgement, just as the German nation was condemned in the showtrials of the victors in 1945.

    • I defer in my understanding of Heidegger to the better informed mind of a greater man, Eric Voegelin. I will deal with his view in a later chapter; you will then see how Voegelin pegs Heidegger as a key linchpin of demonic mendacity.
      Takuan Seiyo

      • Voegelin’s smackdown of Karl Popper, in a letter to Leo Strauss, is one of the most delicious things I’ve ever read. So on that basis alone, I’m well disposed toward Voegelin. However, I’d dispute that Voegelin really understood Heidegger. I think Strauss had a much better understanding of Heidegger — that not all of what Heidegger wrote was “demonic mendacity” and that there’s no one who has given a more profound analysis of the nihilism into which the West has descended than Heidegger. See Jerry Weinberger’s penetrating essay, “But Which Gods Will Save Us? The Political Legacy of Nietzsche and Heidegger”. Also Mark Blitz’s essay published at the Claremont website, Reading Heidegger. Also Blitz’s Heidegger and Postmodernism.

        • Thank you for the valuable references. I have a reserved esteem for Nietzsche, but my prejudice against Heidegger is so strong, only partly due to Voegelin, that I doubt anything can sway me. Still, we shall see.

          • If you like Voegelin, you’ll never make the mistake of esteeming Nietzsche. Voegelin only gives him the backhanded compliment of noting that while various atheists of the educated rabble of the 20th century are “small men”, Nietzsche at least was tragically great in his revolt against God; but in the end he was, so Voegelin minds us, nothing short of a madman in the Biblical sense.

    • Derrida’s concept of deconstruction is lifted from Heidegger. Heidegger took it from Husserl. Wrenched away from the rest of Husserl’s philosophy it is as if someone tried to build a house using only an axe.

      Descombes articulates to some degree how Hegel, Husserl & Heidegger are the background against which late 20th century French philosophy must be understood. I don’t recollect that he had seen that deconstruction also is something lifted from Heidegger (and thus Husserl).

      Heidegger was a full-blown Nazi. The fashionable Left in the French, British and American universities have done their best to ignor that. Mind you, since they are collectivists (socialists) like the National Socialists were, it’s not that big a step from one political philosophy to the other. Collectivists really aren’t that bothered when genocide is required in the implementation of their philosophy (witness the relative silence on the genocides by islam and by Stalin).

      • You are exactly right. That’s why I called an essay dealing with Derrida & Co. “Demonic Mendacity,” even though the originator of this term, Eric Voegelin, used it not with respect to postmodernism but relative to Hegel, Marx, Comte (there’s the Frenchman for you) and Heidegger, and to a lesser degree, Nietzsche and others. Hicks on the other hand, dealing strictly with postmodernism, sees its roots in Rousseau.

  21. Just as a broad observation, albeit one cutting to the heart of the matter, while the focus of this essay is certainly useful on one level and from a particular perspective, I find its fixation to be massively beside the point of the problem (the main problem we face today, the only problem I’m interested in: recovering our memory and rationality vis-à-vis our perennial enemy, Muslims) — to wit, that we find today that the majority of non-Leftist, non-Marxist conservatives and centrists (along with that vast demographic swath broadly cultivated in the West but often overlooked, the Comfortably Apolitical & Functionally Agnostic) basically follow and more or less passively enable, if they do not even support, the politically correct multiculturalist paradigm — not with regard necessarily to diversity in general or cultures in general, but ONLY WITH REGARD TO ISLAM AND MUSLIMS.

    This to me is the far more interesting, perplexing, and important dimension of the Problem than yet another treatise diagnosing the Dead Horse of Leftism/Marxism (even granting that that animal continues to spasm with St. Vitus’s dance).


      You are flat wrong. Or maybe you are right with respect to the country where you live (Spain? Brazil?). In the Anglophony at least it’s the opposite of what you stated.

      As to your opinion of the value of this chapter that’s not something I am in the position to contest; however, remember that it’s one of some 15 chapters that, when completed, will have dealt with Marxism/Leftism in no more than 10% of the content.
      Takuan Seiyo

  22. If god exists- and i dont think so- he (off course it would be a he) would write this 10 article essay.

    The enemy is so well defined. It will be a hell of a task to counter this infection but the infected ones are the stupid.

    First step will be reforming the way we govern ourselves. No “representatives” like Barry the Jeremiah Wright/Edward Said poodle. Direct rule rules!

  23. Takuan Seiyo,

    Wouldn’t mind having a couple of drinks with you and talking about things. I’m in Montana and you are probably in Timbuktu but who knows.

    In the meantime, maybe we do get Peter/Pedro/Petrus the Roman as our last pope and then we won’t have all this to worry about anymore.

    • Thank you for the kind overture. Having lost my longtime California home to a nightmarish combine of Aztlan/Alinsky/Abzug I have nonetheless not given up on plans to resettle in the U.S. To this purpose, wherever I may live at the moment I visit the U.S. at least twice a year, looking for a community where I and my family (Japanese and German) can feel at home. Regretably, I have not found such a place yet, though I have found good material in those visits for a book about the astonishing decay of urban and suburban United States. I’ve published excerpts from the chapters about my impressions of Denver and Seattle; alas currently available DTO only. Impressions from a visit to Portland are still online — BTW, I coined my term there for the Pacific Northwest: Zinnlandia. St. Paul and Philly are still in my notebook. Who knows, Montana may round this selection nicely and perhaps serve as a counterpoint.

      • Stay away from the cities, TS. The day the EBT cards stop working, all the urban elements of the Left coalition – blacks, browns, [Arabs], white cosmics, and Jews – are going to be at each others’ throats. Find a small town in Flyover Country. Incidentally, your connection between disappointed Reds and the PoMo crowd is spot-on.

        • You are absolutely right. But eventually, we have to stop running and make a stand where it counts. Running away from the cities just because some demented saboteur judges ordered busing, and demented/corrupt white pols opened up the public purse to incoming nonwhite moochers was a strategic and moral fault of the greatest order. That was the time to take to the streets, by the hundred thousand–in each city.

          Instead, we ran away. But it’s the cities that are the depository of our culture and the operational nerve centers of our countries too. We cannot survive in the countryside except as a powerless minority stretching the time before the hammer falls, not unlike the Boer settlements in South Africa now.

      • Disagree with you as I may about Christianity, I wouldn’t mind you as a neighbor in the Washington Suburbs. If you’re worried about how your family might be received, my Euramerican/Chinese family gets along fine with the neighbors.

        • Thank you. I am sure that if you and I had a beer summit, like the famous Irishman in the White House, we’d end up friends. Still, I wonder about a state that I call alternately Sweden-West or Zinnlandia , currently contemplating a bill mandating annual visits by the local sheriff to inspect the homes of “assault-weapon” owners. I have given some serious thought and boots-on-the ground to the Pacific Northwest, and found the Pogressive tail that’s wagging that dog among the craziest and most contemptible in the world. The place where I’d most like to live is Bainbridge Island, but give me one week there and I’ll either bloody someone’s nose, or he mine.

          You put me in East Washington or Oregon, where the cowboys are, I’d find people I can identify with — but then there would be difficulties of another kind…

  24. Takuan Seiyo,


    “You are flat wrong. Or maybe you are right with respect to the country where you live (Spain? Brazil?). In the Anglophony at least it’s the opposite of what you stated.”

    While there are conservatives in the West who are beholden to broader axioms of PC MC with regard to “minorities” in general, I wouldn’t say the *majority* of them are — which is what I stipulated. One will often find non-Leftist/non-Marxists who otherwise are very concerned about Hispanic immigration, or inner-city black crimes, etc.; but when the topic of Islam and Muslims comes up, they suddenly clam up and go into PC MC mode, or its Counter-Jihad flavor, what I term “asymptoticism” (which is basically the posture of trying to sound tough and no-nonsense about “radical Islamism” but meanwhile the fine print anxiously worried about “bigotry” and “tarring with a broad brush” augmented by “I know many fine Muslims” taketh away the large print ostensibly pledged to defend our societies.

    I thus stand by what I said.

    As for your larger series, would I be off the mark to say that if it doesn’t focus on Leftism/Marxism, it makes up for that by depicting the problem as one of “liberalism” and thus ignoring the broader problem of the traditional virtues of Western Civilization succumbing, through a process internal and hence immune from scapegoating demonization and too complex for chemotherapy or invasive surgery to be useful (and not rather disastrous), to a hectic “excess of health” — for which the remedy cannot be allopathic but more… holistic (the antonym I use, coincidentally, for “asymptotic”).

    • “it makes up for that by depicting the problem as one of “liberalism” and thus ignoring the broader problem of the traditional virtues of Western Civilization succumbing, through a process internal and hence immune from scapegoating demonization and too complex for chemotherapy or invasive surgery to be useful ”

      Consider this gloss on James Burnham’s thesis that liberalism is actually the symptom of a civilisation in a state of terminal decay: “liberalism has come to be the typical verbal systematization of the process of Western contraction and withdrawal; liberalism motivates and justifies the contraction, and reconciles us to it.”

      • Empirically it is about lies and liers

        In the early 20th century, lies were acceptable only if not found out by the general public. The consequences of lying were profound and instant. However the 20th century dictators knobbled the means by which lies could be made public.

        In the mid to latter 20th century, lies became tolerated with no dire penalty attached to them, and recently lies have become acceptable and encouraged as part of government.

        A government lies when it feels it cannot trust the citizens with the truth, either because the truth is unacceptable to them or that the truth is damaging in some way.

        This comes across as a breakdown in trust. Who, writing in this GoV blog, imparts trust to our various governments?

        Judeo-Christian values uphold ‘truth’ as a virtue to be sought at all times, Islam and the various forms of socialism regard truth as a flexible tool that can be used and abused at will, and is particularly effective against Judeo-Christian societies (who have a nurtured assumption of honesty).

        For many now, truth is that which comes forth from their television, which is placed in their living room, and before which they are able to ‘wind down’ and ‘switch off’. They do not understand that the ‘moving wallpaper’ is intrinsically poisonous.

        Who needs red guards or brown shirts when terror and lies can be broadcast at will to people at their most receptive.

    • I disagree with respect to the first and think you are off the mark regarding the second. I have, so far, devoted at least 400% more space to the problems of Christianity than I have to the problems of “Leftism.” And I am about to go into the problems of “Rightism,” and than back to Christianity. In my mind they all interlock. Alas, I think you will think even more harshly of the way I see and would like to see Christianity than you do of my treatment of Leftism. Moreover, without in any way minimizing the problem of Islamization and my own related dread, I see it as one carbunkle, if a large one, on this gravely sick body. I see no allopathic cure for it that can succeed on its own, but only in a framework of a holistic treatment. Maybe we just have different visions, but that’s OK. There is still room for cross-pollination.

      • There is NO holistic cure for Islam, it can’t be changed and grows too fast to be ‘ treated ‘. The only way to deal with it, as we all recognise that it is in effect evil, is to exclude it from one geographical area after another until it is gone forever. Theory is one thing, what works in practice is something else altogether.

        • That is exactly right. That’s why I don’t write much about what’s sick in Islam. It’s none of our business, anyway. Our business is what’s sick in the West that brought Islam in, and how to countervail.

          • “That’s why I don’t write much about what’s sick in Islam. It’s none of our business, anyway. Our business is what’s sick in the West that brought Islam in, and how to countervail.”

            Of course, I agree. There is the problem of Islam; then there is the Problem of the Problem — which is the West’s persisting myopia to the problem of Islam. I just disagree with the diagnosis by certain elements of the “Gates of Vienna Circle” of what constitutes the problem. Not only do I find it distracting and counter-productive to sublimate the Problem of the Problem into an existential and cosmic level (where often the primary problem — of Islam — shrinks in comparison to what is considered to be the “real” problem, some gargantuan evil of a West supposedly increasingly rotten to the core, with Gnostic overtones of a cosmic battle between Good and Evil, where the aforementioned myopia of the West, and the PC MC which frames it, becomes transmogrified into a Satanas Ex Machina as the only way to explain the Problem of the Problem. I think such a tendency, needless to say, could have disastrous consequences.

            This talk of a “solution” to the primary problem (of Islam) was nicely dispatched by Hugh Fitzgerald in his essay, When It Comes To Islam, Please Stop This “Problem” and “Solution” Business. Fitzgerald regularly tried to remind enthusiasts in the Counter-Jihad that the best we can hope for is management of that problem, not a “solution”.

            In addition, the Problem of the Problem reveals, on closer analysis, subsidiary problems — one of which is this unnecessary, if not reckless, transmutation of a pragmatic war of ideas predicated upon faith, hope and trust in the health of our Western civiliation, into a cosmic, quasi-apocalyptic civil war a-brewing. Nota bene: One doesn’t have to frame the Problem of the Problem explicitly in these terms to be, nevertheless, participating in fomentation thereof. It all depends, again, on how the Problem of the Problem is diagnosed. (For more, see my essay, only partially facetiously titled The problem: the problem of the problem, the problem of the problem of the problem—and the problem of the problem of the problem of the problem.)

          • Thanks for the link to your essay The Problem of the Problem and The Problem of the Problem of the Problem…Hesperado.

            I dont agree with the entirety of it, but it is a useful conceptual construct for thinking about these Problems.

          • And yes, there are no solutions for Islam, especially that we can impose from the outside. However we can protect ourselves and non-Muslims from Islam and that means it’s adherents, via a policy of containment.

        • “The only way to deal with it, as we all recognise that it is in effect evil, is to exclude it from one geographical area after another until it is gone forever.”

          Good luck with that. The only areas its been excluded from once it has taken root are Andalusia, Sicily and Israel. Those areas constitute less than a 1% loss of territory in 1300 years. Islamic fascism is the oldest form of fascism.

          Islam has now taken root in Britain, Ireland, Netherlands, France, Germany, Norway… you get the picture? Demographers say that the white British population will be a minority in our own country by 2066. The west has no future now but civil war. Even if european countries eventually found the stomach to do what the Algerians did in 1960 (telling non-muslims to chooose “the suitcase or the coffin”), that came after a decade of terrorism and civil war.

          That Europe has gone was realised years ago by major chroniclers of 20th century europe, such as Walter Lacqueur.

          • Thanks Escape Velocity. I find these rather grotesquely baroque preoccupations with everything other than the pragmatic concern of self-defense against Muslims — which, perforce, will always be imperfect but not necessarily ineffective for our practical (as opposed to amorphously defined spiritual) purposes — to be increasingly fascinating, and irksome, as they continue to morph in the Blogosphere.

          • I think that these self reflecting ruminations are the result of being unable to legislate policy. Debating and developing practical (imperfect) policy is important, for when public opinion finally shifts, when the current zeitgeist is finally abandoned by enough people to implement it. The search for understanding how we got to the point of self immolation as a people and that people’s culture. I think this is important as well. Know thyself and know thy enemy. This besides the job of informing the public caught up in the PC-MC zeitgeist of what Islamic immigration means for your future and posterity, by documenting and reporting the depradatons of the followers of Islam, as well as the capitulation and aiding and abetting by the governments and institutions of the current Western Zeitgeist.

            I do agree with you that many Conservatives are beholden to the PC-MC zeitgeist. Post colonial guilt has them on their heels. But it is the Left that is driving PC-MC and self destruction self disempowerment and diversity as policy. If their were just a bunch of people standing around that felt badly about colonialism, this wouldnt be happening.

          • @EscapeVelocity
            “when public opinion finally shifts, when the current zeitgeist is finally abandoned by enough people to implement it. The search for understanding how we got to the point of self immolation as a people and that people’s culture. I think this is important as well. Know thyself and know thy enemy. This besides the job of informing the public caught up in the PC-MC zeitgeist of what Islamic immigration means for your future and posterity, by documenting and reporting the depradatons of the followers of Islam, as well as the capitulation”

            I have seen the attitude of the people of Britain shift in the last 3 years (clearly the muslim infiltrators complaining about islamofauxbia passing the dinner table test have seen it too). EDL are to be commended for enabling that shift in attitude. But all the signs are that a) some muslims are going into stealth mode, b) others are ramping up claims that they are innocent and they are victims, c) the elite are prepared to do everything they can to protect their mascots. I’ve spoken to trade union officials who have gleefully told me about the abuse that observant muslims are receiving in the workplace (from unobservant “muslims” as much as from non-muslims). And within 10 years I expect to see some changes in immigration and to benefit systems that encourage muslims to be religious, to be welfare parasites, and to be replicating at a rate that is 10x greater than any other group in society. Muslims are already probably double what the official census figure of 5% says (muslims themselves comment gleefully that they are probably most of the 7% of the population who refused to specify their religion on the last census – the first time that option was permitted). Once changes are made that they can claim are aimed at hampering islamization, I can imagine that muslim terrorism is going to get considerably worse. I don’t see them going, I see them continuing to double in number every decade, until there are not enough police, army & secret service agents to foil their terrorist activities. We will reach the point where the non-muslim population fights back. There will be genocide or there will have balkanization.

            “many Conservatives are beholden to the PC-MC zeitgeist. Post colonial guilt has them on their heels. But it is the Left that is driving PC-MC and self destruction self disempowerment and diversity as policy. If their were just a bunch of people standing around that felt badly about colonialism, this wouldnt be happening.”

            Which is exactly Hayek’s point. Ideologically, conservatism will only ever be a brake on “progressivism” [fascism and nazism were both considered “progressive” in the 1920s and 1930s]. The 20th century should have taught people that a new ideological project of liberty was needed. 50 years after Hayek explained it, most people still don’t get it.

            Even under Thatcher, in 1989 there was no sign that her government was prepared to do anything when the meaning of islamisation first manifested itself (“British” muslims marching through the streets, promising to murder a novelist because they didn’t like the content of his story). Now with the attempt on Lars Hedegaard’s life, the mainstream media (mostly not owned by socialists) are averting their eyes.

            Thatcher’s government was prepared to take on the trade unions and neuter them. Her government was prepared to bring in anti-gay legislation. Her government was prepared to act tough on the EU, yet sign away more soverignty. But they wouldn’t do anything but elevate to high office muslims who were part of those anti-Rushdie lynch mobs.

            If you accept what Bat Yeor has promulgated in her latest book, you will know that for 40 years the leaders of the EU countries have been in cahoots with the OIC.

          • That is the eventual policy that must be implemented though, first through a policy of containment, reversing Muslim immigration from the West (and elsewhere like Africa). The public space for Islam should be shrunk, not expanded. Then you can if you so choose, squeeze that public space smaller and smaller, via territorial reduction and active discrimination.

            No doubt there is going to be trouble on the streets of European Christendom, in the near to medium future.

  25. TK ( and Gault III)

    TK: you seem to looking at big towns. How about Boise, Idaho? For a semi-small town, Fredricksburg, TX may be a consideration. If you want to go real small you have a cornucopia. B and D have my email if you want to correspond. Good luck.

    • Thank you for your concern. I’ve had to look at big cities because of some limitations that my family imposes. If they were willing and able, and I ten years younger, I’d just buy land in Wyoming or Montana and homestead. I don’t hovewer belong in such places myself: have too many cultural layers and languages, a different manner of (old-style European on my side) dress, a drastically different pattern of consumption of either cultural or real goods, including food. It doesn’t matter that I and the next-door rancher think the same in so many ways — we wouldn’t be able to get past that other stuff. That’s why I dream of a wagon train –2000 wagons from the East, 2000 from the West, to some small town in Idaho, Montana etc. Wagons piled with all the goods that wagons are suppposed to be stocked with: tools, furniture, firearms, ammo, Bibles, framed copies of the signed Declaration of Independence, barrels of provisions. But this would be a a hijra of a particular demographic segment, to which I belong, which means that the wagons would also carry pianos and little busts of Beethoven, tons of books including in French, German and Latin, DVDs of Czech movies, Italian olive oil and Japanese fish knives. I am quite serious; I believe that the great handicap of the real America, the Red one, which is outside of its big cities, is that such sympathizers as it has among intellectuals and higher net worth people are cut off from it geographically, therefore no real symbiosis can take place.

      • You need to seriously consider a suburb of Houston then. Second choice would be a suburb of Dallas/Ft. Worth. You will find plenty of like-minded folks and the cosmopolitan luxuries you crave.

        • Thank you, Dawn. “Cosmopolitan luxuries” are no such thing. They are “Western culture.” It’s a terrible pox that the Right in America has left the Left in custody of high culture. You will not find many symphonic orchestras, the concept of slow food or well designed artifacts in Red America. Until Starbucks, you could not find good coffee there either. A terrible omission; just what are the conservatives are trying to conserve when they have let so many of the best achievements of their civilization slip outside of their radar altogether?
          Texas is California 15-20 years behind. Demography is destiny; mark my words.

          • Luxury- desirable objects or experiences that are difficult to obtain.
            Cosmopolitan- familiarity or ease with different countries and cultures.
            No, not an equal term to “Western Culture” although Western culture often provides cosmopolitan luxuries.
            I understand your point about demographics. The border is a big problem, no doubt about it, as are the locusts descending from other states looking for viable opportunities here. But you fail to consider the cultural self-identity of Texans. Californians we are not.
            Besides, remember your own words “But eventually, we have to stop running and make a stand where it counts.” Texas is wealthy, resource rich, and Red with a large and valuable location on the Gulf Coast. What better place to make that stand?
            I wonder if you have put boots on the ground in DFW or Houston. Obviously the inner cities are out of the question but there are a plethora of stores, restaurants, cultural experiences, and educated yet like minded thinkers with whom you could interact. Although, I believe your contention that Starbucks makes good coffee damages your credibility.
            Or, I could give you my papa’s version of Bless Your Heart. “Well then, go on and do what you think’s right”. We Texans can be a prickly sort. If you had given August as your counter argument to emigration to Texas, I would have had no response but sad acknowledgment. But now I leave you to your own devices.

      • @ Dawn 3:08 (no room for comment at that entry)

        Right about both cosmopolitan and luxury, but wrong at once. For neither ought to be rare, expensive and outside of the reach of the lower middle class, especially in flyover country. As to “cosmopolitan,” watch attentively American films from the 30s -40s. You have comopolitan characters galore, dialog in European languages that Hollywood did not feel required translation, references to various European details of history and customs that were assumed to be commonly known lore etc. Nowadays, “cosmopolitan” out there in prairie and mountain country means Mexclish stations on the radio dial and take-out chow mein.

        As to luxury, if “hard to obtain” stand for the Neiman-Marcus catalogue, yes. But what I am after is common objects of everyday use and the very basic provisions one stuffs into one’s belly. What I mean is that the lower class Brit family that was finally able, due to mass production, to buy a Wedgewood china set 200 years ago, was getting a far superior product to what the equivalent family can buy now at the local Walmart. When I was a child in commieland — and we were middle class, no Com-Party membership and thus no privilege of any kind — I wore bespoke tailoring. All the buttons were sewn-through, the lapels and collars hand-turned, the buttons horn or pearl. Compare this to what’s on offer at Target.

        And don’t get me started on food. The food that’s available and accessible to the lower middle class is junk of the worst kind; it makes people fatter, dumber (yes), less fertile, more prone to infections etc. Why should proper food be a rare luxury? It wasn’t before to such people.

        And yes, all that is Western civilization. The physical artifacts of a civilization, its nourishment etc. are an immensely important part of it. By delegating the former to lowest-cost giant China, and the latter to giant agribusiness and giant box stores, we have wrought enormous damage to ourselves. I’ll write more about that in a later chapter, but that’s part of what I mean by “Smashed-by- the-Right; not-only-the Left.”

  26. Hooray, late to the party!

    On the subject of deconstructionist thought, I read a great essay a while back by an engineer, called How to deconstruct almost anything. He concludes that the process contains some valid ideas but it’s clear that post-modernist thought has never faced any real-world challenge.

    They’ve also, in my opinion, taken it to a rather silly extreme by transforming reality itself into a text to be deconstructed.

    • ” taken it to a rather silly extreme by transforming reality itself into a text to be deconstructed”

      99% of the time when someone talks about deconstructing something, they mean “analysing” it. They take the word “analysis” to sound as though the result could be opinion, interpretation, or otherwise open to question. They apply a word taken from the context of “house building” or “engineering”, and think that the result of their analysis is somehow proven and incontrovertable.

      This is truly ironic, given the context in which Derrida uses the concept of “deconstruction”.

      Husserl was a foundationalist; a mathematician who wrote a book on the psychology of arithmetic, then spent the rest of his life trying to prove that knowledge and truth and logic were not psychological artefacts but were in some sense objective and eternal. Book 1 of his “Logical Investigations” is a refutation of psychologism (i.e. that form of relativism which claims that things like truth are no more than subjective psychological feelings). Book 2 was where he began to outline his new, absolutely certain study of the forms of the conscious mind. (Although, in all fairness, much credit must be given to Husserl’s teacher Brentano).

      Derrida began as a Husserlian, except Derrida concluded that Husserl never managed to prove that there are any foundations. For Derrida there is a gap, a difference, a deferment of the moment of truth, and therefore the foundation is never reached. There are no foundational truths, just the interplay of signs. And with that, he gave up philosophy and became a writer, some kind of prose poet. Most of the output of Derrida would be of no interest to a genuine philosopher.

      For all their ideological certainty, those who follow Derrida do not believe there is truth. They are relativists. And as Husserl showed at the beginning of his career as a philosopher, relativism is self-refuting.

      It’s now the 100 years anniversary of the 2nd edition of Husserl’s “Logical Investigations”. And the end of the 20th century had the majority of “thinkers” in the humanities in the west rolling around in the pigsty that is relativism.

      Because of the expansion of higher education and the mass media, we now have world-famous “thinkers” who are unfit to have been a secretary to great philosophers of the past like Husserl.

  27. Great Essay Seiyo! These Intellectual Charlatans need to be exposed for the talentless self-hating hacks they truly were and we in the West need to begin to wake up to the fact that, in the war against the forces of evil (for that is, in truth, what Communism is) we are only fighting, halfheartedly, on one front, the military. Because all is ‘quiet’ on this front our population seems to think their is no threat. What they don’t realise is that the Communists long ago virtually abandoned that front for the ‘Cultural’ Front which had been left virtually undefended. It is unfortunate that we in the West will now have to start to view EVERYTHING from the point of view of defensive action against these monsters. They have truly opened up a ‘total war’ on ALL fronts (Political, Cultural, Sexual etc etc) and we will be destroyed if we do not reply in kind. Btw I especially enjoyed this line ‘The effect is as though a psychopath has taken a walk in a mountain meadow and brought back home not the wildflowers, wild strawberries and shapely leaves but all the cow pies, poison mushrooms and broken twigs he could find. ‘-Excellent!

  28. This has been an impresive discussion in many ways . I love this kind of stuff . Even so , I still feel the need to quote the madman from ”The best there is” :
    ” I am DROWNING and you are DESCRIBING the water ! ”
    This has been an impressive exersise in exactly that , trying to find a model of thought ( wether building om Memes , Viruses or sociological constructs) which helps us describe the way our culture is sinking , Titanic style .
    Time has come to think about controling the acses to the lifeboats , and perhabs some swimming lessons .

    • Re: I am DROWNING and you are DESCRIBING the water.

      You are right, and that has been my complaint for years, particularly for top-shelf conservative commentators like Mark Steyn and Victor Davis Hanson. But I have tried to alleviate that: this work, for instance, is about the inner spiritual axis we need to develop in order to prevail. I am more of a novelist than a political activist so this is rambling and going into all kind of side territory, but by the time you have read the last chapter this will have become clear.

      I devoted a whole different series to the issue of how to get out of the drowning water, published at this website. You’ll find it, in five parts, under “The Art of Strategic Citizenship.” While that is built around the situation in America, the principle for Europe would be similar: it’s built around the old German tactical concept of Schw¬er¬punkt. It translates into our reality as the call to move your body to serve the purpose of your heart.

      Let’s suppose that you are a Scandinavian, and you can’t stand seeing what the ruling oligarchy is doing to your country. I would first liaise with other Scandinavians who feel the same about their own respective countries. Then I would select one city, in one Scandinavian country, to which all of you should relocate. Start new lives there, make friends, run in local elections. The idea is to concentrate in such a way that your values come to dominate and find political and economic expression in every facet of life of one, medium-size city. And make that city work like a well-oiled clock. From there, things will take on a new dynamic.

      Of course this would require enormous sacrifices. It would call for your exiling yourself from a country and language you love, abandoning you existing home and job, separating yourself from a part of your family. But the time has come to recognize that this in no longer politics-as-usual territory. This is territory explored previously in the nonviolent mode only by the resistance in Iron Curtain countries.

      As a Scandinavian, one’s preferred intellectual input should now come from Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary. Read Solzhenitsyn, Havel and Kundera, see films based on Kundera’s novels or films by Andrzej Wajda.

      Anyone who would want to explore what inner resources are required would do well to see the recently-released Polish film, “80 Million.”

      There are various other practical solutions: in a federation such as the United States or Switzerland, secession is a possibility too. There is much discussion in the American blogosphere of the why and how of secession; Germanic-Italian Switzerland may have to come to that point too concerning its marriage with the Francophone part.

      • Thank you for the honest answer . I am , or was Scandinavian . 3o years ago there was no intellectually developed oposition to political correctnes in Denmark , So there was nobody to cooperate with . Chance and pure luck brought me to Israel ( and I am not jewish) . To me Israel is the one place where it is possible to do exactly what most of us want deep down in our true selves : to fight Islaam with weapons in our hands , come hell or high water .
        I have done that , and brought up 4 sons who are doing it much better .
        Perhabs we’ll all end up as nuclear dust , but even if that should happen I will have no regrets .
        Things have changed , though . If I was 20 years old today in Denmark I would probably have stayed and fought for my birthcountry , because today it IS possible to join up with other similar minded individual who are willing to enter into a lifelong struggle to opose Islaam and thereby redeem our former proud nations .

      • “Then I would select one city, in one Scandinavian country, to which all of you should relocate.”

        Does this need to be a city in Scandinavia, for Scandinavians – or can it be on a wider scale – a place in Europe, for Europeans? Here in Poland, it seems that a vast amount of people – possibly a large majority – have deep suspicions of Islam, coupled with a historical hostility towards leftism. Perhaps somewhere like this would be the perfect place for such a concentration of counterjihadis?

        • Of course, such things have happened in history. To simplify things greatly, the Russians and Ukrainians used to be Scandinavians, and every Eastern European country used to have large, prosperous settlemenst of Germans emigrated hundreds of years earlier. So some place in Eastern Europe might again become a place of Scandinavians’ refuge.

          But that’s a different scenario. That’s when your country is beyond salvation. But assuming that at least one of the three Scandinavian countries will not be submerged by its Socialist-Muslim regime, dissidents might want to stay closer to home, in a closely kin culture, and radiate influence from there.

  29. It’s just because of these superb conversations, the essence repeated ad infinitum over the Net and within the social networks around the world, that Islam will gain Love–as Takuan yearned–and we will begin to see a wonderful phase shift. The survivability of our collections of ideas are as good as theirs. These discussions give each of us enhanced self-immunity, what we call in biology “autophagosomes”–an cellular organelle giving us the ability to degrade viruses, bacteria, and other damaged proteins. With enough herd immunity the Islamic prion will begin to lose its transmissability. After all, radical Islam nearly faded away in the ’20’s. It can happen.

    • Islam is not a system that can be altered by massive and sustained doses of love, it doesn’t work like that. In the first place Islam is a
      constantly pressurised system, it is always pushing outwards,
      expanding. Like a cancer, Islam’s growth off healthy humanity, acts as its own momentum. Secondly, growing Islam is like growing mushrooms, keep in the dark and feed on [excrement]. Thirdly islam is an army, and not the type of army that will ever surrender. Fourthly, as said elsewhere, Islam in its relationship with the rest of us is the ‘ revenge of failure ‘. That’s partly the reason they keep
      attacking peacful Christians, who, however rich or poor, are generally happy-go-lucky folks.

  30. Pingback: Takuan Seiyo: The Bee and the Lamb, Part 10 | Western Rifle Shooters Association

    • yes – the good old days when Lambeth was a “nuclear free zone”, seemingly everyone wanted to kill Maggie Thatcher (but somehow she still kept getting re-elected) and flats had posters saying “no [police] hats in Brixton”. In hindsight, the makings of the crazy new Britain we have today…

      As for the GLBT lobby & propaganda in school books – it’s exactly what’s happening now in Eastern Europe. Sponsored by EU funding. And Poland’s first openly gay member of parliament – Robert Biedron – was once famous for distributing leaflets to teenagers in schools telling them how to masturbate. Sexual habits are possibly the most important area of the “deconstruction” of a society – having a direct effect on the lifestyles of the parents of tomorrow.

    • Once you have been through a good university, or even a good prep school, you acquire a vocabulary that becomes inseparable from your ability of verbalization. And in this forum you have people with graduate degress, and people with 4-5 languages. No one is trying to put on airs; this is not your average postmodern scholastic article. Besides, education and erudition per se are a bad foundation on which to despise individuals, however justified one’s loathing of intellectuals as a class. Think Pol Pot, executing people who wore eye glasses.

      I would therefore invert your point; I’d say that the problem of Red America is that it does not have enough intellectuals. And intellectuals who share Red America’s values ought to be valued, precisely because there are not many of them. Red America needs such people desperately, for only they have the tools with which to cut through the fog emanating from the ruling elite. So if I were a blue collar person reading a partly-impenetrable text, I would make an effort to understand it, for the sake of my own improvement. It goes the other way too; I would exchange much of what I learned in fancy places (while working manual jobs) for the ability to drive a tractor or skin a deer.

      • you wnat reach more people? who do you suppose has reached more (and influenced)people? a man that could communicate with the simplist soul and whose life has inspired millions. Jesus.

        • We each deploy the gifts we were given. I recall someone in the comments section at GoV counseled Fjordman to start giving speeches instead of writing. Me too, if I were a gifted speaker, and if I had the knack for kissing strangers’ babies, I’d have become a public speaker and politician. My particular gifts suit me for focusing the thought of educated people in my own camp and poaching educated people from the enemy’s camp. That will have to suffice, unless I develop some capabilities I don’t currently have.

        • Hi Hardy,

          Comparing these writings to Christ’s teaching…I suppose that could be a great compliment.

          To me, any person honestly pursuing truth with humility is rare, and I will consider them my ally on the spot. They will be treated with respect and care, because speaking with honesty in a dishonest world is an act of sacrifice. I’m thankful to every person who teaches the truth.

          The simplistic, altered, second-tier teaching about Jesus is a part of the problem; the honest, difficult teaching, real religion, is the solution.

          Seems like the seed of truth doesn’t “take” every time, even if it’s Jesus doing the farming:

          ….as he sowed (seed), some fell by the wayside, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: but when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.
          And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.
          And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased, and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some a hundred.
          And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

    • You must realize that it was not a bunch of semi-literate hillbilly simpletons, who wrote the Constitution of the USA. Do you “despise” the American Founding Fathers, because they were intellectuals ?
      People find themselves in disagreement with certain intellectuals (or influential groups of intellectuals) all the time. But a totally hostile anti-intellectual attitude is not helping to challenge the ideas and philosophies you disagree with. It is impossible to win on the battlefield of ideas and overcome the current civilizational crisis without the intellectuals.

      Try reading these books : “Intellectuals and Society” by Thomas Sowell, “The Return of the Primitive – The Anti-Industrial Revolution” by Ayn Rand, “Socialism – An Economic and Sociological Analysis” by Ludwig Von Mises, “The Road to Serfdom” by Friedrich Hayek. The authors are all serious prominent intellectuals, but you’ll notice that their popular books are not hard to read and understand.

  31. As one reads Hicks on Postmodernism, there comes a sort of epiphany “Yes, this disorder of thinking–now present in academia and in many of the world’s elites–could be the reason for most of our problems.” Whew! It explains so much. I was so glad that Takuan landed on this.

    In review, Hicks says Postmoderism all begins with Kant. Kant says that it is impossible to know objective reality. We can only know our subjective thoughts and feelings which have to be, at best, a second-hand reflection of reality. Whatever reality is actually “out there”, what he calls the noumena, is always of course filtered through our sense organs and interpreted by our brains and minds. And these filters can alter the genuine objective reality quite thoroughly, either by adding, subtracting or changing it so that it is quite unlike the true noumena. Apparently there is no way around this dilemma of epistemology. In fact we could be brains in a vat; how can be ever be sure?

    And, because our desires and emotions can so alter what we can learn about reality, we cannot ascribe absolute values to anything. We have all been fooled by our sense organs. If we can wish most of our reality, how can we prove our version is the truth? Everyone’s ideas are valid. Relativism can run amok.

    I think we can re-argue this conclusion in light of some ideas in physics. That is, I think it is possible for a brain in a vat to know that there is something “out there”, to know that there are at least some components of a noumena and to learn something about their nature. To give a taste of this reasoning, consider the concepts of time and duration.

    The isolated brain could have either 1. an infinite series of neural memories, mental images and recollections–if it had lived in a magical world for eternity–or it could have 2. a notion of duration….that it was born or created at a certain time and that it did not exist before this early time because retrograde thoughts cease at some point. Our memories only go back to a finite time. If you were a brain in a vat and you searched your memory you would find a time of your earliest memory, just as you do in real life. These neural traces would not go back in time to accumulate an infinity of memories.

    We know from physics that anything that senses duration can sense the passage of time and this tells our brain-in-the-vat that it has a speed less than c, the velocity of light. Anything that cannot sense time or duration has a speed of c. E.g. photons do not experience time. Anything that senses duration has to have mass and has to travel at less than c.

    Thus begins the learning of the brain-in the-vat, It now knows a little of the noumena. It now knows that it has mass and that it was created or born at a given time and has not existed for eternity.

    This tells that brain that there is something “out there”, an agent that created it and has given it mass.

    Probably a thousand holes here? and getting rather silly, but possibly one start in eliminating this postmodern psychosis.

    • We know about the Heisenberg principle and all that. But it does not necessarily apply to macro phenomena. The issue is that European philosophy has quit our mundane reality in order to contemplate the abstract. Yet knowing worldly reality is entirely possible — all it takes is that you learn the reality about yourself. No easy task, admittedly, it requires quiet introspection — what’s known as Zen, or in Chinese Chan, meditation — for years. One of the reasons I chose a pen name after a Japanese Zen master.

      Difficult to lay out in a the space of a comment. I wrote a short piece about this years ago, here: On Schrödinger’s Cat and Joshu’s Dog.

      • Know thyself.

        And as Sun Tzu added….

        Know thy enemy.

        So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss.

        If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.

        If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.

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