This grew out of a debate with man about town, radio show host, and general radical Tom Lynn. A man I greatly respect and love. Ironically enough in his peer group he is seen with respect and some deference which places him in a de-facto non-stated hierarchy whether he is comfortable with this or not.
My dad used to say, all of life for a man is a pecking order, whether you realize it or not.
Whether you realize it or not… this is the key.
To me, hierarchy is neither good nor evil. It is innate to the human race, in some way a constant part of the human condition, and an emergent phenomenon whenever more than two people get together and start doing something.
One of my best friends gave me grief over this one, I think it’s because we often have an emotional reaction to hierarchy and authority. And we do not look at subtle dynamics in human relationships, and moreover project our experiences and our culture’s experiences on others and in a desire for a liberational strategy, if we tire of authoritarianism, we may be prone to letting our desires – sincere and well meaning as they are – cloud the way we see things.
There is always a pecking order in things, having hung out with a good many anarchists in my life; I’ve noticed pecking orders in DIY and anarchist circles. The pecking order originates in competence in one sphere, and the respect of one’s peers towards that competence. The mistake is in not seeing hierarchy as situational in such matters, a temporary office that one occupies due to one’s competence by degrees, and others lacking competence in a specific area.
Hierarchy exists even among the most so-called “primitive” and “savage” peoples in the world. Including those people whose communitarian and consensus based systems are often admired by anti-authoritarians. Just about every single non Western culture pays massive deference to its elderly as wise founts of communal authority. Hierarchy and authority rear their head. Go through reams of anthropological fieldwork, leadership and decision making structures in which specific individuals hold a qualitatively ‘higher’ position are to be found all over the human race.
Human survival trumps our scruples. IF some form of hierarchy (and I’m ignoring, for the time being, a metaphysical perspective here) were not useful to human biological survival then it wouldn’t be near universal. Honestly, I think one vice of the Modern West is the habit of trying to pin the entire world into our own limited domain of understanding, and when we try to escape this we still do it anyway, while projecting our fears, concerns, anxieties, and bad experiences.
As I see it, it’s natural for some to lead in a matter, and for others to accept their leadership.
Leadership doesn’t have to be absolute servility and I think it’s an error to think in this way. A matter of exaggerating the subtle.
The key to authority and hierarchy, I think, is to tame them and mitigate their excesses.
If you deny this, it will just creep up on you unseen – it’s good to remain conscious and focused.
The key to understanding elites is there is always one at the top. One focal point, someone always calls the shots in a social system, the error is in not seeing soft power and influence for what they are. Governance is a pyramid; over one layer of jerks is a smaller one. The falcon never hears the falconer; it does its job, however, as trained.
The way we use words greatly affects the way we think about things. Take, for example, authority. What is authority? The word has certain connotations, but what is it?
First used in English in the early 13th century, as autorite “a quotation or book that settles an argument,” taken from Old French, first appearing one century before, auctorité (in modern French autorité). This comes from Latin’s auctoritatem / auctoritas(nom) “advice, opinion, invention, influence, or command” in turn from auctor “master, leader, author” (hence the modern word author).
Only in the late 14th century did it acquire the meaning of “the power to enforce obedience” and in the early 1600’s “people in authority.” The modern usage of “Authorities” to mean police powers, or generally “those in charge” is first seen in the mid-19th century.
Auctoritas in Latin could also have other connotations, some verge into the metaphysical, a spiritual authority, but also it carried the idea of knowing one’s self, and possessing gravitas, a certain dignity and weight about one.
Authority can be as simple as advice, advice that settles an argument, or an opinion or an influence.
Authority is, what’s important is false authority versus true authority.
If you look at all human social organization on a non romantic level, from simple friendships between buddies to clan, tribal, family, national structures, you find the phenomenon of leadership and hierarchy.
There are people I respect and defer to in some matters, there are people who respect and defer to me in some matters. This is the point, when we talk about hierarchy this needn’t imply a Pharaoh or other god-king tyrant overseeing millions of slaves dragging 20 ton stone blocks, it’s more subtle than that.
Hierarchy is neither good nor ill, it simply is, and it is what you make it into, by correct and careful cultivation or by abuse.
Not being conscious of this can lead to the very things you fear creeping up on you unaware.
– Ke$ha, is like the Tracy Twyman of popular music. I deleted the rather insulting verbiage following that observation about both women, both are not without their talents and … public roles.
On Kesha, doubtless there are a few perverts reading this blog. What follows is simply out of an aesthetic appreciation of her dancing abilities. Obviously the girl started young.
Obligatory Jail-bait warning concluded.
Talented girl. Whatever became of the kid with the hat anyway? Thank god digital camcorders did not exist when I was in high school, neither did YouTube. It made it difficult to capture on video douche-like moments. We weren’t deprived though, we did have bbs’s, ascii art, and Fidonet..
– Bands like Dimmu Boigor, are evidence of something. What, you ask? That a steady diet of fantasy novels and psychotropic drugs can damage both good taste and sanity. A tendency to take H.P. Lovecraft novels as somehow indicating reality is linked to this. A tendency to take Peter Levenda’s Necronomicon as anything other than really creative occult fiction, well ditto.
Musically Dimmu Boigor are talented musicians. I do not deny this, most Black Metal bands are insanely talented on a technical level. But no Skarsgård, the dark creeping chaos beneath the occeans depths will not respond to your Enochian calls embedded in half-growled lyrics, underneath a 200bpm drum track…
-Sanity can be defined in a simple way: as the degree to which we recognize reality as real, and deal with it instead of escaping it.
-Blood Money: bring back weregild and diyaat. Most people oppose ‘Blood money’ on an ethical and pseudo-moral level. This is an error, for one the world generally pisses on your morals and laughs at the inside joke. For two, blood money is actually a deeply ethical and moral concept. Whenever someone is killed by an act of homicide or manslaughter does the “state” suffer?
No, people do.
People suffer emotionally, and they suffer financially. The Sharia’s diyaa, and the old Gothic/Teutonic Weregild recognized this, in compensating heirs and dependents to ease the economic impact of loosing a loved one. Do you have any damn idea how expensive funerals are? I regard this as self evident, so let’s move on.
-Dueling should be brought back. Have I gone too far man? No, not really.
It’s like, people talk about having abolished slavery, but slavery was never abolished. In fact it still exists on a far more massive scale than ever. Google “modern slavery” and “human trafficking” if you have any questions. Chattel slavery was just made formally illegal, on the level of private ownership.
Sorcery and magick are of language, twist words and definitions and lo, you can hide an elephant in drag under most people’s noses. The magick is in language. Slavery exists and certain people benefit from it to the tunes of hundreds of billions of dollars a year. (On a public level felons and military personnel are still 0wned by uncle Sam, but back to private slavery).
People have a ludicrous and cartooonish view of what bondage and slavery legally are, and are not. What do you thing wage slavery is? We should grow beyond entertaining verbally expressed mendacity and disingenuous speech.
Slavery still exists and in some form it will always exist. This isn’t an apology for it, it’s discussing reality.
So, on the same level – retributive violence still exists, as do blood feuds, and always will on some level.
That’s why I say, “Bring back the duel.”
Yes, the duel. Why? Well, it is simple, legal duels could decrease violent crime rates, while re-instituting some semblance of a culture of honor.
The West will never have a true culture of honor again, but you shouldn’t romanticise these things anyway. Overly honor bound cultures have deeply disturbing aspects, but so does a culture full of honorless geldings.
Honor in general is a good thing, in my eyes, and we can take a step back a bit to a world in which some small semblance of honor, enforced by the notion of someone you insult blowing your head off in a field in front of spectators, returns.
For the record, I’m actually serious about this, bring back dueling.
Why do people flagrantly cut each other off, spit on them in public, berate each other and act without couth?
Because they know the probability of someone whipping out a gun on them is remote.
So, if someone cuckolds you, takes your girlfriend from behind like a bitch in heat on your bed, and you walk in and catch them, then what?
Simple, call the authorities on the iphone, inform them you are challenging such and such to a duel, and let the registry of dueling malefactors schedule you two for a time on the green. If the guy is a dishonorable bastard, you can always kick him in the pecker and beat him senseless. Since he’s in your home, in your bedroom, I think assault charges will be hard to stick.
But the duel is preferred. And it shall solve problems. 50/50 chance one or the other will survive, honor and face restored.
I see nothing wrong with letting people kill each other over matters of insults and honor in controlled environments, where bystanders cannot be hurt.
The problem with our culture is a culture of coward geldings who are content to outsource their violence to other countries, drone bombings and watching out of shape mercs (aka contractors) doing it on TV.
Except the working classes and the poor, they know how to get real about such matters. I respect this, if someone says something that dishonors you and you punch him for it, frankly I think that’s a justifiable assault. But the middle classes and upper classes, cowardice. It makes it easy to do things to other people and only face the prospect of lawsuits and legally destroying the other’s life, if you have enough money.
To hell with this, a pistol, and 50 steps on the green.
Objections can be distilled to “dueling is violent and immoral, and so is killing people.”
I agree, with a few tiny caveats. However it remains that dueling will restrict the natural and inevitable violence that will occur anywhere you have a population of men who are not geldings and who are possessed of a reasonable amount of testosterone. How many people die in accidental bar fights every year? People who object to this stuff typically lead sheltered suburban lives.
Violence is inevitable, you want to limit it to a small circle. This will prevent murders, hits, and assassinations.
It’s a better alternative to drive by shootings.
So again bring, to deal with the results of duels, the old germanic/Anglosaxon weregild (what the Muslim Sharia calls diyaa) as a formal public welfare function. Murder isn’t a crime against the state, it’s a crime against specific people who are financially affected by it. If you kill someone then you damn well need to be able to pay up, this fits well with dueling.
I’m serious. The benefits are too obvious to go into, I trust and respect my reader’s intelligence. I mean, just think it over for a moment.
[Ladies, you have got to develop better choices in men.. fer real.
I tend to disagree with ‘Whiskey’ on most things – but he’s always been pretty square on the mark about the general tendency to ‘thug it up’ in American culture. People should reflect that this was the default state in the Western world excepting a narrow period between 1870’ish and 1990’ish
2. This is really sad and really tragic, I recognize this girl from around town, I’ve seen her and her friends around. One of the guys I work with lived down the street from the shooting. He buys the story of an ‘accidental shooting’.
Ultra violent skinheads beat homeless guy to death under a bridge, girl starts mouthing off about her boyfriend’s guilt, and his best friend by mistake shoots her with boyfriend’s gun, boyfriend then promptly gets a tattoo of dead girlfriend’s name as a memorial.. My condolences to the girl, her family, and friends. And may justice be served.]