Sunday, June 07, 2020

Individualism cures racism.

This article quoted a psychology study that a lot of us probably heard about some few years ago.  All about how all white people have internalized racism because when given pictures of black people we all reacted in a way that indicated the perception of threat.  I can't promise it was the same study as the one cited here, but I'd be willing to put money on it.

The important quote:

"Psychology research tells us that seeing people as individuals, rather than as members of groups, helps reduce social prejudice. The psychologist Susan Fiske showed exactly how easy this is, if we put our minds to it. In a 2005 neuroscience study, she found that when white participants saw photos of black faces and had two seconds to judge whether the people in these photographs were over the age of 21, they showed activity in the area of the brain called the amygdala, which indicates a high level of alertness and emotional arousal. In other words, they saw a threat.

But she discovered a neat trick to defusing this automatic fear response. In some cases, her research team asked the white participants to judge what sort of vegetable the people in the photos would prefer to eat. In those cases, where they were prompted to see the people as individuals with their own personal tastes and preferences, the amygdala activity looked the same as when participants saw white faces, suggesting that they were able to individuate, that is see the faces as individuals, rather than group them into a category perceived as “other.”

Unfortunately, the process of individuating has come under furious assault in recent years. More and more, elites in media and politics are encouraging us to think about ourselves as archetypes of groups rather than as individuals."

 We're bombarded with demands that white people develop "white consciousness" when an honest, thinking person must know that this will lead to more racism, not less.

But it makes sense.  If people started to view individualism as the cure for racism the entire intersectionality empire comes tumbling to the ground.

Is it possible that anyone who makes a living as a full time "Studies" professor was unaware of the second part of this study?  Because I don't see how they could have been.  Is anyone who studies race as their profession following up on this to find out the best ways of changing how people think about race?

Or are they writing another book about how white people are racist if they aren't racist enough?


Link to the study cited.

Friday, June 05, 2020

The Intersectionalist High Church

           It seems to me that the "conversation" about Black Lives that is focused on intersectionality is focused on doctrine to the exclusion of life itself; the exclusion of physical, actionable life itself. Rather than focus on how people live or even what they think and feel, the focus is on confession, language, and conversion to a doctrine.
           Someone asked if what was going on was a religion.
           Not only is it a religion but it can't even really be discussed without using religious terms.
           There's a Church, now, more concerned with exclusivity than with reform. More concerned with an Inquisition than with reform. It's not that some people are going to do it all wrong, are going to address Black Lives wrong, but that anyone outside of the Fellowship can not be ALLOWED to address problems which nearly everyone, to a person, agrees upon.
           Not because their ideas are bad.
           Not because they don't hate racism.
           Not because they aren't focused on practical or even utilitarian change.
           But because they aren't "of the body". They haven't confessed the faith.
           I've said before and often that "woke" and SJW's, the ideas of White Privilege are toxic, harmful, self-important and ultimately disastrous ideologies. There's no *mechanism* for reform. Only confession and a sort of public theater where the "believers" hammer out the number of angels on the head of a pin, except they really mean it instead of viewing it in a Historically accurate way as a game of logic and intellectual practice. As IF perfection of doctrine will spark a spontaneous regeneration of human nature.
          This is instead of focusing on the personal, the individual, the practical, and sometimes messy. This is instead of allowing chaos and heresy and a true LOW CHURCH solution to a profoundly human and fundamental problem.
          And when someone wants to pick up the issue of the day with a practical sensibility they're called racist or other names by people so tied up in their OWN value that they can't imagine sitting down in the dirt and simply *being* with other people and trying to win a single soul.

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Monday, March 09, 2020

Efficient Lies

Distributed systems are always more flexible and more responsive than centralized systems. It doesn't matter what the subject is, this is always true. The current push towards centralized decision-making and authority, to emphasize groups and government instead of individuals, and to insist on the assumption that one overarching enormous system is more efficient than distributed, duplicated, and independent systems, is profoundly untrue and terrifyingly dangerous.

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Sunday, March 01, 2020

When Evil Pretends That It's Good, or How Dare You Not Be White.

A friend is reading a book about critical race theory or some stupid stuff. A white author writing to a white audience. The author INSISTS that it's racist to avoid having a white racial consciousness. We're SUPPOSED to have a white racial consciousness, and she knows that makes white people uncomfortable because we've been taught that this is racist, but we have to get past that and learn to identify as and think about our whiteness as our identity.
Just reading a paragraph, yeah, sure, it made me more than uncomfortable. It made me angry. Yeah, sure, we've been taught that we're not supposed to do this. But part of the anger I felt was that I recognized in my own self a growing desire to give her just precisely what she was demanding of me. Good. And. Hard.

I wanted to shout, FINE, I'm going to Be White, now. I'm going to think of myself that way and I'm going to LOVE IT.

Idiots. Complete and utter idiots. They don't want an end to racism, they want to insist upon it. They want white racial identity to be the most important parts of our lives. They want white people to band together according to their race and identify and value their race.

You know, like white supremacists do.

And when they get what they want they're going to feel like the Good Guys about it. Because they're fully and profoundly evil. All of them.

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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Watercolor

Elijah 2019 - a freckled elf.   My kids are remarkably talented. (I've just been informed this isn't completed yet.  So maybe I'll get to post an update.)

Update:

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Thursday, December 19, 2019

"Unthought" by John Worthington


Text © John Worthington
Images © Synova
Linking to this post permitted. Not copying, storing and/or re-posting without express permission.


Monday, December 09, 2019

Salvation Army

The current thing seems to be the burning moral need to oppose charities for wrong think. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

The Last Jedi Sucks


The never-ending saga of people insisting that you must love the dumpster fire of The Last Jedi goes on and on.  A "real" comic artist just wrote up a four panel comic warning women of "red flags" about guys they meet in fandom and proposed a test... find out if they loved The Last Jedi.  Points?  1) Was Canto Bight pointless.  2) Should Holdo have told Poe her plan.  and 3) Was Rose Tico useless and poorly acted.

These three things prove that 1) A person doesn't understand the connection of theme and plot.  2) Men need to face the consequences of their actions, and 3) he's probably a racist who hates women.

I will never tire of explaining all the myriad ways that The Last Jedi sucks. 

Was Canto Bight pointless?  In one sense it was one of the more fun parts and it was the only planet hopping that really happened in a franchise known for ridiculous planet hopping.  But what ever potential it had was wasted.  Part of the cringe were the words that the script put in Rose's mouth.  This was not her fault.

Was Holdo a stupidly stupid excuse for a leader?  Yes.  And having had even a smidge of military experience made her character and actions nearly unbearable.  Again, not the actor.  That a war hero was on the base originally meant that it was *impossible* that she and Poe didn't know each other. They would have *dined*.  This is not up for disagreement.  That she was a war hero with apparently no ability to manage a garden variety "hot shot" is absurd.  In fact, in the end, every single plot necessary action she took was in service to Poe's ham handed character arc, in service to the male character who seems to be one of the very few with an actual character arc.  It was, in the end, all about Poe.  But it was stupid.

Was Rose pointless and poorly acted?  No.  She was pointless and poorly *written*.  The writers and the director of The Last Jedi chose to "ship" the minority characters and turn both Rose and Fen (who had the potential to be *significant*to the story line,) into comedy relief.  And they stuck Rose with the single most horrifyingly saccharine line in the whole movie and had her deliver it in a contrived scene that made no sense at all... because of *course* she was going to stop Fen from being heroic because of *course* she didn't even notice all the people behind her getting slaughtered, people she'd known for years.  She knew them, even if we didn't.  And that's what the writers and director decided to do with it all.

The movie sucks.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Is a person smart, but people dumb?

You know that saying… a person is smart but people are dumb?
I think that in almost all of the very important ways that matter, it’s the opposite.
A person is dumb. That’s why people believe there’s some magical thing about being smart. They look around them and it’s a wonder any given individual can even function. And if that’s true, and it sort of is, then how could people, in aggregate, be anything other than dumb-multiplied?
So we need that super smart person who somehow can assure us that even if life is messy and scary and chaotic, that someone does know better. We don’t have to be afraid.
Except that even a dumb person knows more about their own life, what they need, and what’s possible, than the smartest person who isn’t them. And the inability of that smart person to know more about any given person’s life than them… well, *that* is what multiplies.
People with the freedom to make and then change any number of sub-optimal choices, to try and then fail and try again, to respond to their own life as best they’re able, well, it might be *chaotic* but in aggregate it creates a robust and dynamic system that actually comes up with the best answers, the best use of resources, the speediest adaption to change, and all around better results than centralized planning by “smart” people.
A person is dumb. People are smart.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Children are our Future

 This one is so general purpose (and wow do people never stop trying to use kids for advocacy because then anyone who doesn't "respect" them is MEAN) that it almost doesn't need a note that the current events prompting this is Greta Thunberg's Tour of Scolding.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Sounds like a hero to me



This teacher objected to the new policies in his school district (and indoctrination about why they were "good" policies) on the basis that it caused real harm to black students to be treated as if they were only capable of lower standards of behavior because of their race.
It's a toxic message to send.
And if it were voiced by anyone else, exact same meaning but with normal language instead of critical race theory jargon it would be just as shockingly racist as it really is. Because what it really is is this... morality and behavior is genetic, these children are less evolved.
It's disgusting, damaging, and repulsive.


Sunday, September 08, 2019

Fighting History


Over and over in one context and another, it seems that people today haven't anything to fight or work for and so they choose to go after History, borrow their battles from the past.

It doesn't seem to matter who fought those battles and won them or that those battles have been won.  When your identity centers on activism you can't allow victories.  And so what we see is people borrowing oppression that doesn't belong to them and borrowing it from people in History.

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Zoe Quinn

Well, it looks like Zoe Quinn wasn't getting enough attention lately (people who actually don't create anything worthwhile in the world often have this problem) and decided that she needed to find herself some victimhood to become important again. Which meant finding a person to destroy while her toadies and sycophants worshiped her bravery.

The fellow she destroyed killed himself.

You know... anyone with any understanding of human nature watched her during the early gamer-gate times and what they saw is someone who was self-aggrandizing to the extent that anyone working on inclusion and social justice who didn't *go through her first* was put on the list for destruction.

She was like the mafia don and you had to go to her first and get her blessing or she'd find some fault in your program to promote women and your plans to support trans people and she'd sic her mob on you.

She suffered no competition in her supreme righteousness.

I never thought that my sentiments were on the wrong side of those kerfuffles and the primary reason was that she was accepted as the standard bearer, the arbiter of who'd live and who'd die.

And she never actually created anything worthwhile or contributed anything to *anything* other than her own importance.

And it wasn't a secret. It was right out there in public, front and center. And she still collected that power and controlled that mob. I mean, any particular *person* can be understood to be ultimately self-interested. But what sort of garbage excuses for human beings *follow* her?

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Thursday, August 15, 2019

The Other Guys



There was a couple of items in the news lately where someone who was a zealous woke warrior ended up on the wrong side of accusations which required apologies and even a demotion for something which the fellow (I did look, several times) never actually said.

And I always sort of wonder how disorienting and confusing that must be.