Thursday Afternoon Tidbits

Some quick points for today:

1. Social Media PR Campaigns

I mentioned elsewhere that many people – perhaps even a majority – are engaged in a constant social media PR campaign.

By this, I mean that folks take a strong interest in appearances on social media. They will post things that make them look like good, moral people (without regard to actually being good, moral people), or post things that make them look rich, interesting, trendy, whatever (again, without regard to actually being any of those things). This may very well make up a majority of social media posts, outside political arguments and cat memes.

Now, folks have always signaled status and virtue, since the dawn of time. So by itself, this concept is not new. What social media has brought to the table is a sort of marketing and PR angle to it. It’s like every individual has a miniature marketing and advertising campaign running. Constant pictures, link shares, and quick tidbits become advertisements of one’s value. Facebook is like “free” ad space for your personal PR campaigns. Instagram, of course, is even more dedicated to this. All social media platforms have shades of this, though at least on Facebook, we spend some of the time hating each other for various political positions, or posting stupid (but oddly addicting) memes.

There is a gradient between this activity, and the so-called social media “influencers”, whose personal PR campaigns have succeeded to sufficient degree that they can be monetized. They are those who appear most moral, or most trendy, or most interesting, rich, whatever…

…but still irrespective of actual morality, trend awareness, uniqueness, and wealth.

Pretending to be something you are not is so much easier on social media than it was in the past. But the competition is fierce.

2. Trump and Collusion – Nobody Knows Shit

Pardon my bluntness, but it’s true. Something like half the political conversations I overhear or see on social media invariably sink into the pit of Russian collusion and Donald Trump. By itself, this wouldn’t bother me. Yes, it’s stupid and probably completely fictional, but it’s conversation material.

What is annoying is everyone involved pretending they understand even a minute fraction of the legal wrangling and political bullshit surrounding it. A Leftist will say that some dossier is going to lead to an indictment, which will in turn force Trump to testify or be interviewed by such and such. Whatever. These are armchair lawyers who know nothing about any of this. They just repeat mainstream media talking points and fantasize about Trump getting impeached and Hillary Clinton somehow being installed as Empress, starting a dynasty of female Clintons ruling the world until the end of time. Or something vaguely like that, anyway.

It’s all fanciful bullshit. Nobody understands what’s going on. Not even, I suspect, a great many of the people who are involved in it in one way or another. This is a problem with any investigation or witch hunt (whichever you prefer) that happens at the federal level. It soon becomes a bureaucratic brier patch that nobody can navigate or understand. It’s a mess.

Many Rightists have taken to arguing with the Lefties in the same manner, saying that such and such document really says some other thing, and their legal interpretation is wrong, and Mueller is… well, some damned thing. I’m not much of a fan of this method, either.

I will be clear: I don’t think there was any collusion. I think the Left is using this narrative to distract from the fact that they colluded with pretty much everybody on Earth who would give them some campaign support, and is using this to try and limit the reach of Trump’s administration by tying them up in endless red tape. But I have no specific legal or technical arguments around this. I base this on the general hostility of the media, and the fact that most people involved have a track record of being corrupt liars.

Most of the people arguing this case don’t know any more than I do, but couch their arguments in legalese to appear like they do. It’s rhetoric pretending to be dialectic.

3. Facebook’s Stock Dump

I’ve been waiting for a long time to see Facebook suffer some consequences for their behavior. Zuckerberg appears to be in a world of hurt, insofar as a billionaire can possibly be said to be “hurting.” Facebook, like many social media outlets, has engaged in a stealth campaign against Rightists. Or, perhaps more accurately, has engaged in a stealth campaign to support Leftists.

I’ve spoken at length about the double standard before, and have witnessed it in person, and seen it well documented by others. But always, Facebook retains an air of plausible deniability. At first, they claim it’s an accident, or that there are no double standards. When the truth is discovered, they retreat to “individual employees did it.”

We all know this is horseshit. But for the longest time Facebook suffered no real penalty for it. Leftists control the establishment in the West, and their money can cover for a great many flaws, but not forever. It seems they may be reaching the limits of their pocketbooks. George Soros himself has said as much in recent days. Mark Zuckerberg’s troubles may be a bit of confirmation of the same.

Politics is Marketing

Media talking heads have long understood an important truth that has eluded most conservatives. The truth doesn’t matter in a debate. Being right is borderline irrelevant. Popularity is far more important, and it is generated via marketing. A truism is true, it has rigidity; it is a solid thing. Marketing, on the other hand, is somewhat more elastic. It doesn’t hold shape the same way, though the best marketing is often related to the truth in some fashion. Consider truth to be concrete, and marketing to be really thick tar that can appear to hold shape for a time. It may even be made of truths, and yet still, underneath it all, be a bald-faced lie.

Journalists famously twist words, take things deliberately out of context, and spin them various ways. They are molding the tar to appear solid. And at first glance, it appears true.

Did he really say that offensive thing?

Of course he did, here’s where he said that. I have it on video.

Ah yes, but you edited out the rest of the speech.

So what? It was boring. Who wants to listen to all that anyway?

The marketing angle goes far beyond individual journalists, however. It operates at a meta level, in the way Leftists moralize every damned thing. For instance, if you oppose raising taxes, a Leftist might accuse you of being greedy and hating the poor. This is simple marketing spin. Taxation is good because poor people are helped. It’s like when a car salesman says something like “this car has amazing safety features, how could you possibly not want to be safe?” The salesman, of course, neglects to mention that the car’s performance is horrible, its gas mileage is terrible, and it looks like the wrong end of a donkey. Of course he’s going to spin the upside and imply that you’re crazy for not wanting it, while omitting all the issues.

The tar never holds up to close inspection. Debating politics, both in person and on the Internet, is rarely an exchange of facts, ideas, and concepts. Rather, it is more often a contest of opposing marketing schemes. Call it Ford vs Chevy. And its adherents often hold a quasi-religious devotion to their chosen brand. Which one (if either) is objectively better is irrelevant. The Left, for the most part, understands this. The Right is confused about it. Many Rightists still believe this is a contest of being right. Politics is seldom about that.

Consider it from a different angle. Imagine that, in the heat of an argument, someone called you a pinhead. Would you get out your tape measure to prove that your cranium fit within normal size specifications? That is how we on the Right often answer Leftist charges of racism, sexism, fascism, etc… And it’s incredibly stupid. In fact, it implies guilt. Most people are idiots. And so, being idiots, they place higher value on the testimony of an accuser than a defendant because the accuser, of course, is a victim. This is why our legal system was constructed on the basis of innocent until proven guilty. It was to avoid the very natural human tendency to give greater weight to a perceived victim.

Think about it, this mechanism powers the entire Social Justice movement. SJWs believe that because some demographic group has suffered some wrong in the past (i.e. it is a victim), its members now possess special powers to accuse people of what we might call cultural crimes, or thoughtcrimes. And in this court, you are guilty until proven innocent. You’re a pinhead, unless you get out the tape measure. But then attempting this makes you a laughing stock. “He said he’s not racist because he has black friends, lololol so stupid!” The proofs are not accepted, because this was never about being racist or not-racist, it was about marketing spin.

When you see a Ford and Chevy guy go at it, they might talk for a bit about the “facts”, i.e. engine power, reliability ratings, sales numbers, etc… but very soon, it will devolve into “Chevy is for fags.” If you responded with “but I’m married and I go to the strip club every Friday,” how would people react to that?

Are you seeing the pattern here? This is all bullshit, but only one side has, historically, realized that this is bullshit. Most of us on the Right who have a mind for actually figuring out what is correct have subscribed to the erroneous notion that the Left is also trying to figure out the right answers. Maybe once there were more Leftists who did this, but today? Give me a break. Every day it’s Nazi this, Hitler that. These are the techniques of bad, plaid-covered used car salesmen. These things don’t merit a serious response. Walk off the lot. Go somewhere else. Or if you do engage, ask the salesman if he tries to bend every customer over, or if today is just an ass-blaster special or something.

Yes, it’s crude, vulgar, and rude. Politics has always been those things. Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr fought a duel to the death over this kind of thing. This has always been a nasty business, when did the Right forget? Leftists don’t think we’re nice, moral people. Whatever. So what? I want to the throw Communists out of helicopters. Niceness has nothing to do with anything political. Fight, or go home.

The worst trick the Left has played on us is making us think we have to be seen as nice, polite people. Why? Do the opinions of our enemies dictate our behavior? That’s dumb. Leftist peer pressure should be ignored, or responded to in kind. In that, Donald Trump has done the Right a truly awesome service, in the old sense of the word: inspiring awe. He has shown us that insults, comic one-liners, and obnoxious rhetoric actually work on these cretins. Look at how he has gotten under their collective skin.

And boy, the Left doesn’t like this one bit. Ugly rhetoric and high school insults have been their political bread and butter for decades, now they face someone who can lob the grenade right back, and it’s working. If they want to stop and put away childish things, I might be inclined to do likewise. It would take a lot of convincing for me to believe they are serious. But for now? Hell no. It’s all marketing spin, it’s all bullshit, it’s all high school popularity contests. And if that’s how they want to play, fine. I didn’t make the rules, but I can play by them just fine.

Stop caring if they think you’re nice and moral. They don’t care what we think of them, why should you care about their opinions? They aren’t interested in truth, they are interested in power. That’s why every “solution” to every “problem” involves the government granting Leftists more power. Create a marketing campaign to convince everybody they have a problem, then have a slick salesman offer a government “solution” to the problem. Rinse. Repeat. Put another way, if every bank error is in the bank’s favor… you need a new bank. Don’t ask for the bank’s opinion on whether or not you should stay.

I know, some of these people are friends, family, coworkers, or otherwise. And it’s not always easy to break with such people. But if they’ve insulted you thusly, if they’ve treated you like this, then perhaps you don’t mean as much to them as you thought. And believe me, dumping truly toxic people from your life is great. You’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.

When Will The Other Shoe Drop?

Francis penned an article this morning that bears some further questions. I encourage you to give it a read. As others have explained recently, including Ace, Kurt Schlichter, Tom Kratman, and many other luminaries on the Right, we are perched on the edge of a knife. Violence is simmering beneath the surface – perhaps even a full-blown Civil War. Francis explains:

There’s no reasoning with one who considers you evil. There’s certainly no compromising with him. He’s out to destroy you. He’ll take whatever opportunity you offer to slip the dirk between your fourth and fifth ribs and twist it. Nor is there any way for you to convince him that you’re not evil. He assumes a priori that everything you say is ultimately aimed at his destruction.

At that point it becomes war to the knife.

We haven’t yet seen violence with actual casualties. But we will.

So what gives? Why hasn’t it started yet? I was discussing this with a personal friend yesterday, a veteran, MMA fighter, and all-around guy you don’t want to fuck with. He is the sort of man that, were the war to start tomorrow, would be on the front lines. He expressed to me his fear, not for himself, but for his wife, his children, and the end of a relatively prosperous life. For even if he survived the conflict, he mused, life would never be the same.

Veterans are largely Rightists, and Leftists are largely pussies who have spent their lives avoiding any kind of real physical risk. So the Right has a much better sense for what a war within our borders would really look like. The Left, as Francis notes in the following quote, has no idea because they have not suffered consequences for this behavior up until now.

Bad behavior must be punished. The Left’s decision to use harassment and intimidation against conservatives and Republicans is about as bad as behavior gets without becoming legally actionable. Up to now, it’s met no significant degree of punishment. Therefore, as it’s getting its practitioners some of what they want (including a shameful degree of satisfaction), it will increase.

If it increases past a certain level, it will trigger lethal violence.

Rightists, like my friend, are rightly fearful of the consequences of this thing going bad. We have some idea of what this really means, and so we hold back earnestly hoping for another way. This, in turn (and sadly), emboldens the Leftists, most of whom have no Earthly idea what they are really agitating for, or the risks they are taking, because they have no experience with risks like these.

However, at some point Leftist derangement will exceed the Rightist’s reluctance to resort to violence. And when that Rubicon is crossed, there is no going back. Leftists are quicker to violence, but Rightists are far better at it. The consequences of this will be grave.

To top it off, nobody really knows exactly where the Rubicon is, in this political mess. Will it be gun control or confiscation? Will it be the next time a Democrat wins control over the federal government? Will they be hellbent on revenge and do something they shouldn’t? Will it be getting Rightists fired from their jobs, destroying their businesses and ability to earn, such that they have nothing to lose? Or will it be a cumulative ‘death from a thousand cuts’ situation, where all of these smaller, lesser attacks will, in aggregate, finally exceed the Rightist’s ability to tolerate?

I have no Earthly idea. But I do know that the Rubicon is somewhere, and that across its shore lies Civil War, or something approximating that. And so, in this, we are generally wiser (though not wise, see: Socrates) than our Leftist counterparts, who haven’t a clue about the hornet’s nest they’ve been poking.

If and when the Left crosses the Rubicon, they will certainly be surprised at what lies on the other side. One thing is certain, nobody is going to like it.

Western Self-Loathing: The Disease

Today, I intend to be very plain with my readers. I tire of beating around the bush. And to be frank, that is what I have been doing for quite some time, though this was not my intention.

You see, I have fallen victim to describing in detail the symptoms, and how they might best be treated, with too little regard for the disease itself. This is a common affliction during the twilight of the West. Left and Right alike know that the West is dying; that it is deeply ill. The Right proposes to treat the symptoms, the Left prescribes euthanasia. For them, death is the only cure to any disease.

My ancestor is reputed to have said, when given the opportunity to inspect the ax that was to behead him, “this is sharp medicine; but it is a sure cure for all diseases.” Perhaps the Left has taken this too literally, or perhaps theirs is a cult that worships death. We can only speculate.

Our first instinct as men, when accused of a crime, is to plead our innocence and to offer our proofs. With an impartial jury, this may work if the proofs are good. If the accuser is malicious, however, and merely intends harm regardless of innocence, the pleas will please him. The proofs will be laughed at. He will feel powerful, presented with your own weakness.

Right now, as I type this, debates are raging across social media, and many of them are loaded with accusations of moral violation. These do not even contain the pretense of an impartial jury, as a legal violation might, but the consequences can be just as dire. Your job, your business, your possessions, your relationships, and reputation are all on the line. Are you, perhaps, a racist? Do you hate the poor? Do you stand on a cliff ready to push granny to her doom?

Plead your innocence and your accuser will laugh. Fail to plead, and your guilt is established. It is a Catch-22, a Kafkatrap. The mind recoils from resultant feelings of guilt and shame. This weapon is the most powerful one in the enemy’s arsenal. We have survived by ignoring it, hiding from it, or dismissing it, depending on one’s inclination. Facing the guilt and shame head-on is a daunting task only a few are truly capable of.

How did it come to this? Why is the weapon so effective?

Deep down, many people in the West feel guilty. We live comfortable lives, we have plentiful wealth. Few in the history of man have possessed such plenty. I cannot speak for everyone, but at least for myself, there are times I look at what I have and think that I do not deserve it. Greater minds than I have done things for civilization that I could only dream of doing, and possessed far less.

Our problems are often laughable. Listen to any conversation where people are complaining about this and that. The complaints are small-minded. Perhaps someone is having trouble with love or sex, another complains that his car has broken down, or perhaps his toilet will not work. Another complains of crushing debt from his state-of-the-art smartphone, sitting in his brand-new vehicle. The Internet is slow today, or the air-conditioning unit has broken down again.

With the exception of love and sex, perpetual problems for the race of man, these are not problems in any historical sense of the word, not even for many of the poorest among us. Such things are small, and deep down most of us know that. Problems we face are preferable to the problems of our ancestors, for whom food was difficult to obtain, work was brutal, and life short and filled with pain.

For a time, the West prided itself in having banished many of the ills of our forebears. Indeed, we even traveled to the moon! Some wished, perhaps, to spread our plenty to the rest of the world. We could export our ways, our culture, and our way of thinking to others, so that they might enjoy the same rich rewards.

That did not last long. Before long, Marxist subversion had wormed its way into media, entertainment, and education. Fabian Socialism was the method of subverting the West, for revolutionary Socialism had already failed. For a time, this was probably a deliberate instrument of the Soviets. We won the Cold War in an economic sense, and probably in a military sense as well, though nuclear weapons assured that this was never put to the final test. In a sociological sense, both sides lost, though for us the loss was worse. If the Soviet Union was the head of the Marxist animal, it was lopped off effectively. Like the Hydra, however, the body did not die, and new heads eventually sprang from the seeming-corpse.

Many theories exist for where the weapon was first forged, and by whom. Saul Alinsky is frequently cited, as is the Frankfurt school. The Gramscian Long March may also have contributed. On this matter, let smarter men than I speculate and theorize. The weapon exists, and its effectiveness cannot be denied.

Concepts of Socialism go at least as far back as Aristophanes, yet the method of civilizational guilt as a means of forcing it upon the citizenry is unique and relatively new. Further, it exists only in the West. Chinese do not worry about colonizing Africa, nor do Mohammedans moralize about the Christians and Jews they have subjugated and enslaved. Conquest is rarely regretted on a moral level by anyone but a Westerner. For most, it is a matter of some pride.

When reading the works of Western ancients, this sort of civilizational self-loathing is conspicuously absent. Guilt, where it exists, tends to be personal, or spun as a vendetta of sorts. It is difficult to imagine the Romans, for instance, worrying overmuch about the opinions of the Gauls. So even in the West, this is new.

Why do Westerners hate themselves so? There is no other explanation that fits. The West, at a meta level, feels that it does not deserve what it has, and now questions whether or not it should even continue to exist at all. Survival, most powerful of all human instincts, has been completely subverted, and now inverted.

This is the disease. Rightists will endlessly prattle on that they are not guilty for slavery, or for various wars, conquests, and other events in world history, because they were not alive, nor would countenance such actions if they were. This treats only the symptoms. The disease continues. Deep down, even many Rightists feel the guilt and the shame, and Leftists continue to exploit them. I know this, for the weapon once worked on me, and I see it continually deployed against my fellows.

Something very deep has rooted itself in the West, a civilization-killing disease of the mind, for which no amount of charity, submission, or moralizing is sufficient to extirpate. At no point may a Westerner regard his moral duty as satisfied. No amount of charity is sufficient, no flood of government programs, nor burden of taxation or public penitence will extinguish the disease. Indeed, these only worsen the symptoms.

If the disease is to be named, I can think of no other more suitable than Civilizational Self-Loathing. Pride in the West’s accomplishments was reduced to guilt for the West’s success. And now the guilt has mutated into self-hate. Ceaselessly, we are bombarded with declarations of how evil we are, how our ancestors did terrible wrongs, and how we are responsible for righting the wrongs, for paying a weregild with the death of our own evil civilization. Anything less is a moral evil, we are told. Give up America. Give up existence. Crawl into a hole and die, and give up everything you own, and even then you are still guilty and hateful.

Such bombardment has continued since I was a child. And I suspect even the strongest among us are worn down at some level by it. Once, when speaking with my friend Sarah Hoyt, she explained that Marxist morality, such that it is, has infected all of us to some degree. Even those who display few or no symptoms are often carriers of the disease.

If there is any hope, it is that like any virus, a vaccination might be possible. I am no stranger to people using guilt as an emotional weapon against me. It has occurred for most of my life in greater or lesser fashion due to many personal experiences I have little desire to discuss. As I look back, I am thankful for this at some level. I do not possess the strength of character that some do, but I was vaccinated somewhat against the disease, and that has helped.

Perhaps the next generation will be better inoculated against the disease. The distinct schadenfreude of Donald Trump’s victory of 2016 demonstrates that a wave of “don’t give a fuck,” as we might put it in vulgar terms, has swept the country.

Is it enough to treat the disease, and not merely the symptoms? I cannot say, but I can hope. One thing we can all do, however, is to stop looking back at our history in shame. For every great tragedy in history, there is wondrous discovery. For each moral failing, there is bright accomplishment. We must appreciate the good, and remember the bad so as not to repeat it, and let neither be used as a weapon against us, to make us hate ourselves, or where we came from. America has no reason to feel shame for her history. For if any have tried earnestly to be a just and moral people, though at times failing as all humans do, it is us. And those doing the criticizing have records far worse. If anyone should feel shame and guilt, it is they.

For America, shame? No. Pride, perhaps. But never shame.

It’s Always About Power

Francis explains for us a common SJW technique, one so ubiquitous over the past few decades, that almost every institution has been terminally infected by it:

When persons of that stripe manage to gain entry into an organization, they immediately start to work at politicizing it in their preferred direction. It doesn’t matter whether politics has any relevance to the purpose of the organization. The infector’s purpose is politics and nothing but politics, regardless of whatever pretense they used to gain access to it. Often their intentions are opposed to the organization’s goals; they actively seek to degrade it, even if that would mean the loss of their positions, salaries, and status.

It is important to understand the scope and purpose of the SJW’s actions. For them, there is no other purpose to life than the battle for control over other human beings. Folks, I know I’ve said this many times in the past, but people really need to take this to heart fully. It’s very hard for a mind not bent toward power to comprehend fully a mind that is bent that way.

They do not care about safety, or the children ™, or equality, or any other excuse. Racism does not matter to them, nor does sexism. Wealth inequality does not matter to them. What matters to them is power, and these things are seen as convenient vehicles for this power. Were SJWs alive in 1930s Germany, they would have blamed all their woes upon the Jews, as they blame straight white Christian men now. It would have been convenient for them.

Were they around in during the Russian revolution, the Romanovs and the filthy capitalists would have been the excuse. Wealth inequality, mistreatment of the peasantry, whatever…

In this you find the most insidious component of SJW subversion: there is a degree of truth to the excuses. Americans know blacks got a raw deal in our history, as did Indians. We all know about segregation. We all know that America – like any nation in history – has sins buried in her history. To the SJW, this is the leverage, the crowbar, use to move us, so that he can gain power over us.

All these things are tools to the cynically-minded, gender-confused sociopath. And they care not for the nature of the tool they wield. Today it is white men. Tomorrow they may return to Jew-hatred – we’ve long seen strains of anti-Semitism among extreme black nationalists. Or perhaps it will be something different, who can say?

The tools morph and change with the culture. Today it is one tool, tomorrow it is another. The tool may be seemingly-innocuous, like a helmet law or a speed limit. Or it can be death camps and gulags. It can be forceful, with extreme physical violence, or it can leverage guilt and weaponized empathy.

The purpose is always power.

I shall repeat: the purpose is always power.

SJWs, like busybody tyrants throughout history, are extremely cynical and calculating about these things. This is how they can claim they are about peace, love, and diversity one moment, and shout “kill whitey” the next. Whatever works in that particular moment, that is what they will use.

This is why so many prominent SJW feminists have been outed as sexual creeps, rapists, cheaters, and otherwise. Feminism is a tool for them – they don’t really believe any of it. It is merely a crowbar to open a door to more power.

If they contribute anything to your organization, be assured that is merely another pry bar, another wedge, to gain power and convert your institution over to their service. They will do just enough to gain entrance and cover. It is only about power. Subversion is their way of avoiding triggering active resistance before they are ready to fully take over. Once they do, their power over the organization is already at critical levels. Infestations must be rooted out quickly, and early… or not at all.

In simple terms: good-natured people are too gullible. We think it is possible that they aren’t what they seem to be. And that indecision, that hesitation, is likewise another tool in the SJW arsenal.

For a casino to make money, it does not need to win every round. That would be counter-productive. It would scare away the gullible losers. Rather, the house merely needs a small advantage that, over time, adds up to complete and total victory. 51/49 odds played out over a long enough time results in the casino making wealth beyond the dreams of avarice.

For SJWs, politics is likewise. Their subversion does not need to avoid triggering resistance in everybody. Some will not be gullible. Some will not fall for it. They merely need a slight advantage, played out over decades. It’s the Fabian approach to tyranny.

If there is any hope for us, it is that awareness of this calculating approach to power is spreading, and that the would-be tyrants began moving too quickly. They thought victory was finally at hand, and all that was left was a mopping up of active resistance. Their impatience may be our salvation.

But regardless of all that, never let go of a central truth: it’s always about power. Always. All else is a lie.

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