to reign in hell… .. and the orderly free West

A conundrum, metaphysically it is impossible to truly reign in hell.
And no one with any sense would want to.

The statement fits, whether you literally believe in hell or not, it works as a general analogy

I leave it to you, dear reader, to figure out why as fun exercise of intellection and ratiocination.

It was the late Charles le Gai Eaton who once quipped that men are only truly equal in two places, a monastery, and a brothel.

There may be an inverted hierarchy of sorts in hell, by the very nature of a hell-like condition there is no stability, no firmness. The absence of order.

On the Free West.

“I may be a peasant, but I’m a clever peasant” – John Constantine, Hellblazer

So this is likely to royally piss some people off. And this is a pity, these ideas can be debated but you might want to, well, think it over deeply a bit before letting yourself get emotionally carried away.

I might re-visit this idea in greater depth, but is it possible that one reason the Western World is so orderly and well managed may have less to do with certain genetic propensities (sure to make the HBD folk gnash their teeth) of Western populations – an idea that should be examined, whether there may be a role genetics plays, in averaged behavior of populations, but both sides of the essentialist versus environmentalist debate are prone to spates of dishonesty and stupidity in exploring the idea – and more to do with climate and feudalism.

This comes out of a friendly discourse over coffee with Khalid Bey. He pointed out, as a native of North Africa but having lived in Northern Europe and Scandinavia, the immense need for social organization in cold climes. Having visited Maine in the middle of one of the worst winters in recent history, I’m inclined to agree with this point. In near glacial environments there is no room for a lack of social organization.

Just keeping food and wood stocked, and a village’s streets clear of snow enough for the local doctor to make rounds is a feat of personal and social organization. “Home economics” acquires life and death significance when a miscalculation in drying or storing food leaves you 3 weeks short of victuals. If your fields are under 6 feet of snow and so is your roof, and you’ve improperly judged the strength of your support beams, then you and your family will be buried alive and your neighbors will not remotely be able to save you, or even notice your demise for quite some time.

Living in the far north requires certain skills of cognitive organization on both the individual level and the collective. And such collectivities will be small, due to environmental pressure. Extreme northern environments are incapable of hosting large human populations without modern technology. Eskimos display such skills, northern Mongols and Siberian populations do as well as Northern Europeans. 

Among them is a type of individualism. in small populations surrounded by environmental extremes the need for individual personal judgment is immense. This has nothing to do with abstracted ideas such as IQ, I’m talking about something more solid and tangible. It is an adaptation beneficial in some environments and harmfully deleterious in other environments. Period.

Other equally rigorous conditions require different survival skills in other climes. Living in a desert for example. Desert populations have to cultivate specific cognitive skills to survive. Your average Swede, Dane, Yakut or Eskimo would have died rather quickly in pre-modern times if thrown into the middle of the Sahara or Hadhramaut Yemen (whose name literally means “presence of death”). In fact, they still will die in modern times if caught without modern technical aids or wild-craft training for these environments. Social organization in desert areas are adapted, and people cognitively and emotionally adjust in a way that assists in survival.

More temperate climes are less demanding and this will show up in social organization.

Next, you add a second factor of feudalism.
Yes feudalism.

Khalid Bey made this point – pre Volkerwanderung Germanic Europe had modes of social organization that really weren’t terribly different from pre or barely literate village folk cultures anywhere. The only “civilization” in Europe of any appreciable level was in Greece and Italy, close to the Mediterranean sphere and thus part of a general civilization continuum that originated in the middle east, in the greater Arabian peninsula (Iraq) and down in Egypt. Gaulic peoples were certainly settled, and the Celts certainly had a high culture that in many ways rivaled or even exceeded the Greeks (the Greeks can be over-rated at times). Still, the Celts didn’t have civilization per se, or at least not in the Mediterranean and Near Eastern sense. And Northern Europeans had basically a village folk culture

There is nothing wrong with this.

If you find yourself getting defensive or offended over this patently obvious historical fact has not reflected on the nature of civilization itself. Sometimes it’s highly over-rated and is appropriate for certain modes of people at certain times, and in certain places. And not others.

Civilizations” in the sense we are inclined to see them are not always what they are cracked up to be. There is both benefit and loss in simple barbarian folk culture, and similar modes of organization, just as there is in monumental highly organized civilization.

Rome was an anomaly in early European history, and a somewhat successful one – but it was a rather fragile success. Consider that barbarian and illiterate Huns only had to knock a couple of arches out of one aqueduct to subjugate civilized Christian Rome, in a matter of few short weeks. This is an immense weakness in their dependency infrastructure. Doesn’t sound too glamorous now, does it? The very fact of their high civilization achievement, wealth, and the resulting decadence precipitated the very seeds of their destruction.

But Rome’s nucleus of organizational institutions and structures produced far more lasting effects in the sense of breeding and cultivating an somewhat orderly and well managed population, when incubated in feudalism.

Yep, feudalism.

On the basis of the small local cultures of a few Hellenic city states, during a mere blip in time of human history (though a significant blip when you look at what the Hellenes and those inspired by them did in late antiquity) it is popular for some people to beat their chests, wax proud, and to talk about the great Western culture of freedom and democracy.

Khalid Bey pointed out that historically there was no such thing, or where there has been it’s been on an absurdly small level. The myth of the Greeks giving us democracy is pernicious, stupid, and historically inaccurate. Contrast the number of free men with agency in some non-Greek non-democratic ancient civilizations and cultures, with the absurdly small elite in Athens to whom alone democracy applied.

Most Westerners throughout history were slaves, or rather serfs which, if we drop a rather absurd general mendacity, it becomes readily clear that the two concepts are not only etymologically related but are pretty close to being identical.

In Greece, huge numbers of people were Hellots. In the Roman Empire a substantial portion of the population were Slaves, or plebs who frankly lived in sub-serf conditions. Ah, and then we come to the middle age Serf, from servus and the word slave from servus, plus or minus a few transformations here and there. The underlying concept is that you had a population that was legally owned by certain individuals and families and legally bound to do work for them.

Until fairly late in history almost the entire population of England, for example, outside of a narrow clerical and warrior class, were legally property. Owned by Lords. Entire populations were given away as marriage dowries in the middle ages. Only the most mendacious could possibly pretend this state was not servitude, and slavery. If the Duke of Lancaster literally owns you and your family, you can “work out the math” in your head.

Westerners, en masse didn’t largely gain the sort of legal freedom we think we enjoy, in the West, until rather late in history. In the case of Russia, feudalism persisted almost up to the 20th century. And arguably until the 1980s if Russian communism was simply a feudalism in the folk’s name.

Serfs are slaves. Whether you like it or not.

If you were speaking Arabic, the word that would have described most, if not all, of European peasantry would have been mamluke. What’s a mamluke? Why a slave, of course.  And, in any case, urban slaves in the Arab world were treated better than even the early European Burgher middle-classes were in the late middle ages – many of whom were still legally owned by feudal lords for generations after ascending to the middle classes. For more on this, research the dynamics of the English peasant revolt for a fascinating look at this.

The term wage slave exists today for a reason.  If you step back and remove the terms, and just look at the essential reality of things, you cannot escape noticing that, in a sense, the vast majority of us, myself included, are still trapped in a soft form of slavery. If you don’t believe me then stop giving the state a good deal of your labor, in the form of property taxes, and see how quickly a tax lien is slapped on your property.

Freedom is relative perhaps, and so is slavery

I’m not making a value judgment here, obviously the system persists because it works. For some anyway.

What I am doing is saying, let’s cut out the feel good myths, the pernicious identity politic myths, and call a spade a spade and realize that we are, by and large, still slaves in many ways – essentially. The greatest mistake is mistaking a term for essential reality.

The vast majority of people can be easily fooled by simply re-naming matters.

If you change the words, change the names of a situation then a large number of people will easily be suckered by this. It is all how you phrase it. The better schooled we become, the more we become weak to this ploy because of the very tendencies to abstraction that our schooling engenders. Sometimes, it is comforting to call a spade a pitchfork.

Feudalism was an extremely well organized social management system. It is no surprise that the descendants of feudal serfs, about 90% of the West’s population, are so good at following orders in an orderly manner. Whereas the recent descendants of hunter gatherer or formerly .. less urbanized populations with limited village structures are not quite so good at organizing matters in the Western way. Look at how third worlders often drive. Or cross the street.

To be polite I will go no further, other than to point out the universal recognition of “Arab People Time” “Black People Time” and the tendency to postpone some things por la mañana. Muslim People Time is a good international compromise between the general excesses of Black Folk Time and Arab People Time..

Neither approach to life is bad, both work in their respective spheres. It is all a matter of context. I believe less has to do with genetics (or whatever genetic hereditary influences there may be are more weak tendencies) and more to do with centuries of cultural and linguistic habit.

I’ve been to England and found it amazing how orderly the English are about their queues. Even the lower classes. I was and remain quite impressed. The English habitually stand in line with a discipline exceeding that of any other race or population I’ve observed.

Maybe feudalism wasn’t such a bad thing after all, for some people anyway.

For some people, anyway. There are always winners, and losers, in history.

It is possible to argue that feudalism never ended, but simply transformed into something else less recognizable, but essentially the same.

But that’s food for another day.

_EOF

16 Comment

  1. Enough With These Men! says:

    Poor boy. Looks like no one reads or comments on your blog.

    Regarding East and West or developed and developing nations/countries: let’s talk about hypocritical men.

    Tonight I was conversing with a tall, dark (very dark, looked part African to me) and handsome Saudi Arabian guy who admitted that he was a hypocrite for criticising American women for being “sluts” while he himself frequented strip clubs looking to “score”.

    He went on to describe numerous Saudi guys who had harems of multiple girlfriends but would go back to Saudi and marry “good Muslim wives” whom were expected to be virgins.

    He also said men can’t be “sluts”, there is no such thing has a “man-whore”.

    He said he wouldn’t go out of his way to save a drowning woman if she were wearing a bikini because that woman has no “respect” for herself.

    Meanwhile, the dude can’t even swim and I said I wouldn’t go out of my way to save HIM if he were to drown because he goes to strip clubs and has no “respect” for himself.

    Even though he is proud of himself for never having drank alcohol or taken drugs (against Islam) yet he feels no guilt over having sex outside of marriage (also against Islam), and even feels it’s “natural” for him “as a man” to do so.

    Women: beware of tall, dark and handsome dudes from the East. They will use you until they return to their countries to marry virgins.

    Also beware of Muslim or otherwise “religious” guys with double standards!!!!

    In fact, we as women should boycott all of them!!!

  2. Welcome to my blog.

    I actually agree with you, your abortive attempt at snarky humor notwithstanding. Snarky humor that has the vague ring of autobiography.
    But it’s actually kind of cute, in a bratty sort of way. It amused me, and more it challenged me. And I like being challenged.

    You speak truth here, so I cannot fault you in it.

    But what I can fault is a basic human tendency, one we are all prone to. Universalizing experiences. At best it’s a necessary defense mechanism, but at worst it can become idiotic. In your case it is not idiotic, but it does bespeak of lacking exposure.

    To universalize general swine like tendencies of some Muslim men, based on a few uncouth types, is actually a form of hypocrisy. Because I suspect you wouldn’t do the same upon clearly examining the negative traits of women of your kind, your race, your religion and region. And trust me, women can display some real swine like tendencies…

    I won’t say “I’m different” but I will say that I try to look at everyone for their weaknesses and strengths both, with prejudice towards none. Not even those who see themselves as my enemy. I try to see their virtues, along with their absurdities. And I admit my absurdities before whatever virtues may be gifted to me.

    I’m Black, and I freely admit many Blacks are idiots – male or female. I’m Muslim, fervently, and freely admit that many Muslims are often bigger idiots than American Blacks (not African Muslims though, a different class of idiot there). I’m American, and I freely admit that a HUGE, huge portion of Americans, WHITE AND BLACK, and Brown for that matter, are uncouth, uneducated, half literate, overly-brainwashed, media drenched, fat assholes. Who are also mono-syllabic, or mono-linguistic, or both.

    But then again, many are not – in all of those categories. I try to keep the good sense to realize that human nature is complex.

    As for men, I freely admit male swinishness – while squarely looking at female examples. Having a rather large circle of female friends, including a couple of lesbians, I’ve heard plenty of insider sister-speak and can fairly say that the female sex is equal to the male sex in sheer idiocy and tendency to try to project delusions on reality.

    So we are equal, men and women, or at least equivalent – in our stupidity and crassness. In our sheer humanness.

    It is often those people who typically have not actively engaged in any sort of real spiritual path with any rigor, who can be the most cynically moralistic and judgmental of others failings. While themselves wallowing like pigs.

    The act of rigorously engaging in real spiritual worth, not a prayer here and there but the sort of real psychologically painful treading through “the dark night of the soul” awakens a real realization, in wading through the psyche’s dreck, of the real extremes and lows that we are capable of inside, and real compassion for others, and a realization both of how dangerous we can be, and how delusional and dangerous others can be.

    It breaks you down and lets you realize how low you really are, but also how high you can aspire to, and you see in yourself as a microcosm the whole of the human drama and scenario, the ugly, and the beauty.

    “and suddenly I found myself in love with the world….”

    Most people never question their most fundamental assumptions about the world, and their selves, until their death beds. How miserable it is to go your whole life as in a dream and then waking up from it realizing “I have learned nothing about myself truly, I have learned nothing about others truly, what have I really done of any worth?”

    Since you have the courage to post what you posted I trust that you are actually one of the self-examining and reflective types. If so then you should continue. It’s a good way to be.

    There are subtle forms of bias that few people escape from.

    Let’s pretend that I have a few bad interactions with a sirdar-ji restaurant owner or something, from there I universalize his bad traits upon every Sikh. Or say I meet a few Appalachian girls and they are full of certain noxious and pigheaded traits so I universalize them “I’d never date an Appalachian girl, guys stay away from them because they are such and such and such” and then even the nice ones I meet I imagine the bad traits on them, or an Iranian girl, or a German one, or a Desi one, or I have a couple of bad brush ins with thugged out Black guys walking in front of my car in traffic and yelling at me, so I universalize this into a general disdain for them all.

    All stereotypes have their roots in reality. However people with discernment and intellect know how to weight matters. People who are primarily emotive and conditioned do not.

    An interesting form of reductive argument, reductive in trying to reduce the one being attacked, is the “shaming tactic” a snarky verbal remark designed to belittle or chip/whittle down the one attacked.

    While I have an ego, and a rather large one, I spend an inordinate amount of time contemplating the factitious absurdity of many aspects of my character – which tends to make me immune to snark attacks that start with the words “poor boy..” knowing your limitations, and mortality (actually watching people die while you stand helpless, or almost having died yourself) does convey some realization of your limitations, and your absurdity. In fact I camp it up, hence the diction I adopt on this blog. It is partially self-parody.

    So as to this “poor boy’s” blog, several people do read it, the log files show a rather large readership and I do frequently get private email, links, trackbacks on it.

    Even if this were not the case it wouldn’t concern me. I write because I enjoy doing so, about what I enjoy writing about.

    If people find what I write to be interesting this is secondarily, a matter of participating in a discourse. If they do not care for it, then also great. Writing this stuff is an exercise for me and it lets me express things rattling around in my head. Whether or not anyone comments on it or even reads is not my concern.

    You, however, did read it. And also you did comment on it. And I am glad that you took the time to do so.

    1. Saudi Arabs. None of this surprises me in the least, Saudis are primarily Nejdis.
    Nejdis are the Redneck “white trash” of the Arabian Peninsula. Most of these guys were sitting around in goat hair tents sharing their bowls of water with their camels up to 3 generations ago. Even most Arabs would admit that the people of the Nejd tend to be crass. Granted compared to Westerners in many ways their etiquette, their adab, does stand out in a few areas – and their overweening pride, self-regard, arrogance, and puritanical fanaticism with the most trivial aspects of my religion whilst blithely ignoring more serious matters, such as saving drowning women, or speaking kindly to people.

    Most Muslims, most Arabs even, who have experienced Saudis in great quantities tend to have a bad taste in their mouth. They were a marginal tribe in a backwater area of Arabia known, prophetically known primarily for earthquakes, plagues, strife, bad and uncouth manners, and “the horns of Shaitan” the only reason why they rule Arabia and have molded modern Arab culture is because a bunch of idiotic Britishers thought it was a good idea to give the Hijaz to illiterate goat herders and send the Hashemites into Iraq and Jordan.

    2. What you describe equally describes to men of many other nationalities. And you know it.
    Hell, I’m American. I can find you thousands of douche bag guys just as swarmy or more so within a 20 mile radius of where I sit. Both White and Black. For the HBD white guys out there, especially white. At least the most crass Black douche bags I’ve known do not try to hide it under social niceties.

    And don’t get me started on the British..

    3. Both of the sexes are absurdly hypocritical and display a noxious lack of consciousness about their sexual motives and yearnings and actions. Women included. Again you know this. We know this. If you want to bait me on Arab men, when I’m not even Arab, then excuse me if I refrain from getting started on women. In general, much less than from certain regions. Why ? Because I facetiously style myself as a gentleman.

    And besides, there are plenty of blogs out there bashing women (just surf around..)

    I try to cultivate a humble realization of both the failings of men and women, and how both men and women can navigate each others’ bad trait, and connect with each other’s good traits, and surprise grow from the experience.

    That said as a man I find swinishness and pigheadedness in my own kind to be more abhorrent. Because I have known many good women who were hurt by men who were not so good. And this saddens me. It is to be noted that in many of these cases the women were warned “this guy is a douche bag, you should look elsewhere”.

    4. Anyone who runs around with double standards is a hypocrite and, thus, by definition a shit-head. Doing what is opposite of your ideas isn’t hypocrisy it’s a failing, pretending to do what is your ideal while actually having other standards and actually doing other things however is hypocrisy.

    5. Anyone who wouldn’t go out of his way to save a drowning woman is clearly a troglodyte, at that point why were you even still talking to him? He’s an idiot, and a dangerous idiot. Since this is, in effect, homicide by omission. Your continuing to talk to a moron of this degree doesn’t reflect well on you. When you see monkeys throwing poo around in a room you do not converse with the monkeys lest they throw smelly poo all over you.

    6. I could care less if half educated Nejdi teenage boys born in lives of privilege and wealth and typical Arab arrogance happen to pat themselves on the back for not having drank while running around slutting it up. It means the man clearly does not understand his din (religion, or let us say dharma) and is simply adhering to some tribal cultural traditions colored by Islam.

    Doesn’t matter if they are Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, or Atheist, to pretend to be something that one is not, or to maintain double standards because one is lazy, is shit-headed.

    Moreover being crass towards women is the definition of shit-headed in my book. I don’t like crassness towards women. Part of it is because I have 4 sisters who have dated crass guys, and I want and expect better for them, and the other part is that I genuinely actually honestly like women as human beings. I like femininity, and I instinctively do not like seeing women treated crassly.
    I couldn’t care less what your race or religion or ethnicity happens to be, crassness towards women is something I abhor.

    But I also do not like hypocritical hyperbole directed at one group while remaining blithely silent on the ills of other groups. I can’t respect women who only criticize men but never women, just as I can’t respect men who only criticize women but never our fellow men. Misogyny and Misandry are inverse mirrors of each other. Both receive my scorn.

    I personally have no double standards when it comes to women. My standards are
    1. Are you sane?
    2. Are you kind hearted and compassionate?
    3. Are you intelligent?
    4. Do you have some spiritual instinct?

    Some things trump others, good heart and compassion trumps intelligence. Sanity is a matter of relative degrees, and it is hard to stay sane and balanced in an insane world.

    Much factors into my “would you be a good mother to my children and a good life partner and not likely to spazz out and slit my throat and set us all on fire due to a chemical imbalance” equation.

    Other than that I am surprisingly open. I am also pretty straight forward about my moral failings. I don’t present myself as a model Muslim because I am not, though most critics are typically not models of, well, much of anything. I do have certain concerns about how I want my children to be raised, the culture I want for my children, but these can be navigated with an open minded partner. And myself too I try to remain very open minded myself. When you have two open minded partners and a clear understanding of what both can, and cannot, compromise in and where both can, and cannot, connect, and a mutual willingness to extend the self and worth together, then I personally believe many problems in cross-cultural and cross-religion unions can be navigated through.

    It takes mutuality, mutual respect for what the other partner holds as sacred, and mutual grace to support each other.

    Most couples even of the same religion, the same race, the same culture, lack this. Same sex couples are not exempt by a long shot, the problems just seem to manifest in slightly different guise. Most people solve this by trying to find clones of themselves and their value systems, because they do not want to work.

    And for good reason, the stakes of failure are high, especially when children are involved. So I can’t blame people who want to give up and not try. But there will always be a few people who have a mutual reciprocal respect for each other and love. As the Quran says “Garments for each other” – reciprocity and mutuality.

    There are two types of people in the world, those who challenge themselves and those who are lazy asses.

    The former takes work, the later is a normative state of the vast majority of mankind.

    In my mind this is to be scorned, first in myself and my own heart and mind, and then in others. The somnambulistic sloth of the masses, us all included of course. It is something to be overcome, to be worked against in our own lives.

    Or to shamelessly rip off the band, KMFDM – “kein mitleid für die mehrheit”

  3. Enough With These Men! says:

    1. “In your case it is not idiotic, but it does bespeak of lacking exposure”.

    NOT AT ALL. I’m an “internationalist”. The bottom line is MOST men from the East have a similar attitude to this Saudi guy. The West, thanks to FEMINISM has brainwashed such crap out of our men. That a handful of MRAs or PUAs who can’t get a date off a calendar spout similar rhetoric just shows how backwards and desperate they are.

    2. “They were a marginal tribe in a backwater area of Arabia known, prophetically known primarily for earthquakes, plagues, strife, bad and uncouth manners, and “the horns of Shaitan” the only reason why they rule Arabia and have molded modern Arab culture is because a bunch of idiotic Britishers thought it was a good idea to give the Hijaz to illiterate goat herders and send the Hashemites into Iraq and Jordan.”

    IT’S BECAUSE MECCA is there. The capitol of the Islamic World.

  4. Welcome back.
    Again, I’m not sure if I’m really disagreeing with you, except in emphasis. And in pointing out things I think you may be missing or glossing over.

    It takes a real stretch for Men to find sympathy or empathy for the things women do, that infuriate and befuddle us. Likewise it takes a real stretch for women to do the same. Both men and women display a contrariness that appears hypocritical but, on close examination, is closely connected to the real differences in priorities and needs each can have.

    The reality is that neither side wants to look at their own absurdities. Hence the war of the sexes is an un-self reflective war, men and women have overlapping needs and also differing needs. Both often make the idiotic mistake of not understanding this. And modern cultures, West and East, are rapidly losing mechanisms to help both navigate through these while maintaining their own priorities and needs. Both are being reduced to the lowest common denominator, which makes both easy to control, easy to manipulate, and easy to milk money from – or witness the success of the porn industry, cosmetic industry, and other industries feeding off our sexual and romantic un-ease.

    As for Mecca – is in the Hijaz, the Saudis are from the Nejd.
    There is a huge difference in the cultures of the two regions, even though they both are Arabia. The Hijaz is the heart of Arabia and Arabness, what is noble about the Arabs is essentially Hijazi. The Nejd is, to paraphrase Islam’s Prophet, a place of earthquakes, turmoil, tribulation, and uncouthness.

    The tribes of the Nejd, Eastern Arabia, have been known as uncouth harsh and fanatical for well over a thousand years. What was true 1400 years ago is true today.

    The British essentially gave Arabia over to the most harsh, most overbearing, most uncouth, of people from the marginal rural hinterlands of Arabia, and sent its most cultivated, urbane, cosmopolitan and educated denizens into exile. Since the 1940s the people of the Nejd have essentially culturally dominated modern Arabian culture. Added to this a large infusion of wealth.

    Bestowing massive wealth upon the most poor is frequently a destructive mistake and culturally upsetting. If you want to destroy a poor virtuous person make him a billionaire overnight without time to earn it or reflect upon it. “Rags to riches” as they say.

    The Nejdis culturally lack a certain nobility of character, they actually bombed Mecca. No Hijzai would ever commit such an outrage.
    I am NOT condemning all Nejdis, there are many virtuous and generous people among them. But there are certain cultural traits, a tendency to harshness and crassness, that when accentuated and when divorced from other traditional virtues, can become very dangerous.

    The Nejdis are people who demolished most of Mecca’s artifacts, relics, tombs, works of archeological and historical note. In fact they still do, these people are building a multi star massive hotel overshadowing the Kaaba, any Hijazi would see this not only as bad taste but as insane hubris and stupidity. Many non-Nejdi Saudis would in private admit much of this. Again, they are not without their virtues. No one is.

    2. It is perhaps unfair to say that most men from the East have the attitude that you describe, to that extreme anyway. I can certainly agree that such attitudes are probably EXTREMELY common in less extreme degrees, but then again there are thousands upon thousands of men who do not have this attitude.

    But they are probably at home with their family and hence not open to queries on this point… Anyway, how much of this is due to native culture and religion, and how much is due to influence from post-modern Western cultural imports intermixing. Exported by people with a demonstrable cognizance to the cultural disasters that certain attitudes and behavior causes. Witness:

    “Constant Conflict,” by Ralph Peters
    http://www.carlisle.army.mil/usawc/Parameters/97summer/peters.htm

    Commercialized Sexual revolutions produce havoc and chaos in traditional societies by producing schizoid split mutually contradictory worldviews in the minds of men and women.

    It’s the “Madonna/Whore” dichotomy amplified by a huge order of magnitude.

    There may be some evolutionary psychology to it, a biological stratum – universally men in general tend to trust less, for long term mating, and esteem less a woman who is sexually loose, by the standards of their community, than a woman who is less sexually active. There are profound reasons for this, whereas women universally tend to have different standards for trust and esteem of men as long term mating prospects. Cultures refine and mold this, and I don’t think the science is cut and dry.

    But there are some interesting ideas out there on this. That biologically a woman who has been with more partners is seen as less sexually or romantically valuable, whereas for women to some degree a man who has been, or potentially could be, with more partners may be more valuable. In other words it may not be as much a double standard as a dual standard, males and females have different priorities in such matters because of their differing biological roles.

    As an American man what I observe are attitudes like you describe being common among American men, more so than you may imagine. But most guys are bright enough not to openly judge or shame or talk about it. But it’s lurking there, sometimes not so deep, in many men’s minds.

    There is a clear idea with some American men, White or Black, that some girls are good for a fling or a one night stand, other girls are good for settling down with (for those men who still believe in settling down). This is NOT limited to so-called “PUA” types or even conservatives, it’s a rather diffused set of cultural attitudes.

    And honestly, are not both men and women allowed to have criteria for their partners or for the future co-parents of their children?

    For example many women I know have clear standards of what guys are a good fling or a good one night stand, what guys they would take home to meet their parents, and what guys are marriage material. And I know girls who are extremely ruthless on this. And again they are bright enough not to talk about it.

    Then again there are many people for whom this attitude does not describe them. In other cases there are unconscious nuances that affect people’s behavior and perception (for example, why do so many boy and girls alike call certain types of people “skanky” or “nasty” when it comes to their sexuality? There is a clear judgment in this. Or why are some boys “bad boys” and some girls ‘bad girls” but such “bad” boys and girls may be preferred for certain flings or sexual experimentation and exploration, and then dumped for someone “nicer”)

    People are bloody raving unconscious contradictory hypocrites, often. East or West. But certain aspects of popular culture and the media accentuates some things to degrees that become socially dangerous.

    Where the extreme version of this attitude is found in Eastern men, it is not limited to Muslims alone or Arabs alone, but can be found among non-Muslims as well. Hell look at Greeks. I know Hindu guys with this attitude, I know Sikh guys with this attitude, I know Christian Arabs with this attitude.

    As for America, such attitudes are not confined to a handful of “PUA” or “MRA” types, the PUA celebration of “pumping and dumping” women and “playing the field” perpetually or at least before settling down is an extremely old attitude. It used to be called “tomcatting” and “sowing wild oats”. Most PUAs are imitation players or players by “paint by numbers” and non-PUA guys who “get around” are often, actually, far less sentimental and far more harsh in such attitudes.

    Hypocrisy and myopic blindness to our motivations and intent and aspirations and desires and yearnings is found as much in women as in men, it manifests a bit differently in each but the honest truth is that both Men and Women alike need to look in the mirror for the cause of their, or our, relationship, marriage, romantic, and erotic frustrations, failures, and unhappiness.

    And most people never figure this out until it is far, far, too late.

  5. Also for the record, while it seems a little strange to abruptly change a posts topic in a comment, the more I think about it, this is pretty much what happens in a natural conversation anyway, topics naturally do shift and non sequiturs can lead to interesting side digressions.

    So in real conversations I’m king of tangents, much to the annoyance of people who want to stay focused on one topic. Sometimes changing the topic can lead to fruitful discussions.

    A couple of add-ons.
    1. Any man who goes to a strip club to “score” is a bloody idiot. I don’t go to strip clubs, because they offend my sense of dignity. That said, I’ve met and known a few exotic dancers.

    Everyone knows that you one doesn’t “score” at strip clubs if you are a “customer”, the only guys who do “score” at strip clubs are insiders in whatever social scenes exotic dancers tend to float in, and they don’t go in as “customers” or marks. The purpose of a strip club is to extract money from a customer while giving the simulation of sexuality. It is all about money and performance, and not intimacy – Baudrillard’s simulacra and simulation. The whole point of strip clubs is the illusion. It is performance, the fact that a few dancers here and there may turn tricks in a few seedier clubs doesn’t take away from this essential reality.

    2. I’m increasingly liable to consider any man who actually goes to strip clubs as a bit deficient in his intellect. I used to “live and let live” on this point, but honestly it’s paying for a tease, most dancers secretly disdain most of the men who go there, and such dynamics and places probably tend to bring out the worse in both male and female nature.

    The fact that exotic dancing is mainstream nowadays is a sad statement of the decay of Western society. The fact that few actually see this is a sad statement of the decay of the Western intellect. I’m not even looking at it from a moralistic standpoint. People are free to do what they like, few examine broader implications of their actions.

    3. If this Saudi guy is “proud of himself” for not drinking or doing drugs, for doing something that is among the bare minimums of Muslim virtue, well this again shows he has no understanding of his religion and likely received it by rote from people who received it by rote from illiterate goat herds. No Muslim who actually studied his religion, or received spiritual instruction or training from a traditional teacher would EVER call his or herself proud of doing anything, much less than something that’s generally expected with minimal fanfare. And that even if indulged in is more of a minor moral failure.

    Besides, technically fornication is considered a worse moral failing than drinking or drugs. And even here, we are not looking at moralism. The Modern view of morality is bourgeois and hypocritical, the traditional view is existential and metaphysical.

    Moralism can be idiotic, hypocritical hyper-moralism can be worse. I distrust moralists in general because their prissy moralism is TYPICALLY the externalization of their own defects, their own insecurities. The Mullah who throws acid in the face of a loosely dressed girl is probably jacking off to the memory back at home. Seriously none of this is difficult to figure out.

    Moralism is not about doing the right thing in the right context, it is about obeying a checklist of good deeds received from authority.

    Moralism is a shibboleth for people lacking the intellect to examine ethics and morality and use their reason, and hence morality is made into an idol because of their laziness. My understanding of traditional Islam is far removed from bourgeoisie conventional moralism.

    Wrong is “sharri” and is a matter of hurt, Good “khayri” is a matter of benefit – what is “evil” is what is hurtful, to others – like pumping and dumping girls while beating your chest about your “prowess” to yourself, like smoking toxic substances that rob your mind of sharpness – hurtful to your lineage, to your people, or to others around you.

    When “sharr” – the “evil” or harm – is subtle and defused to the point that the intellect is not easily able to recognize it, that is where the Quran makes prescriptive statements many of which, contextually, point out why they are made. But people are generally too lazy to read, to reflect on what they read, and to contemplate.
    When the “khayr” – the “good” or benefit- is subtle and not easy to recognize, the same.

    Your Saudi acquaintance may well be neck deep in bank interest or similar matters. He should pull his inverted moralistic head out of his rear end.

    In Islam giving or paying, or demanding, interest is considered to be more abominable than fornicating with your mother in the open next to the Kaaba. What most people think of as morality, and what actually is truly moral, suffers from a disconnect. I could go hire a busload of call girls to service me for a week while smoking a bushel load of weed and singing ghazals in a falsetto voice while being served flagons of Merlot by nude chubby midgets in body paint, and it wouldn’t reach the moral ill of economic oppression of others. Of defrauding others, of taking interest on loans from them. Hard to understand?

    How many Indian farmers have killed themselves in the last 15 years because of hiked interest rates on their agricultural loans? How many widows, how many poor little daughters, how many farmers have lost their lands and starved so that this woman

    and her damned husband
    , could have their precious organic food exports for bourgeois European sustainability health food nuts?

    http://www.businessworld.in/index.php/Life-Beyond-Telecom.html

    http://heretic.blastmagazine.com/2007/11/from-india-to-your-dinnerplate/

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/1500-farmers-commit-mass-suicide-in-india-1669018.html

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=KUM20090602&articleId=13820

    There is so much wrong with the world I barely have words to begin, other than that most people are highly myopic in the world and lack a basic understanding of the wider consequences of things going on in our collective backyards..

    5. Again I see the point of pointing some things out, but it is insulting and vile to off of the good and loving and supportive husbands, fathers, and partners out of roughly 500 million Muslim men, the vast majority of whom are honorable, loving, and probably more decent individuals than myself or you both, and focusing on privileged upper class Saudi idiots whose beliefs about “pumping and dumping sluts” really are no different than a large percentage of men in America (walk into any frat anywhere in the country), seriously read Maxim Magazine. Read the UK Maxim and FHM better yet.

    I freely admit to having experimented with and explored certain things in my life, and I am better for it. Most people are content with getting things by rote and being told what to do. It is far better to have singed your fingers and learned from it.

    What is also important is not being a selfish ass, and not deliberately trying to hurt other people. This is something people are taught in pre-school. Intent matters. Going out and trying to take something from someone and manipulate and use them, versus going out to share something or explore something with someone even if that exploring turns out to have been a mistake of sorts.

    And again, women have vices and failings in these matters aplenty. They just have better communication skills and are better at rhetorically casting blame at others. Really, in the battle of the sexes what I increasingly see is that each side can be equally wretched needy and pathetic and self-focused, focused on his or her needs, his or her desires, and not looking at the needs and desires of the other.

    What is needed is reciprocity and greater understanding of both men and women. What little writing I do on this area, or what reading I do in this area, is a way of sorting such matters out in my mind with an eye to latter participating in the cultural conversation on such matters to greater depths. There are blindingly obvious things that I think neither side is addressing well. And it saddens me because it leads to mutual suspicion, mutual heartbreak, and mutual anger.

    Which are far from harmony. Both Feminism and Men’s Rights are two dialectical halves in all of this, both have a distorted but valid – on its own level – picture of the broader picture. Both are incapable of transcending their limitations unless looked at as simply contingent views with limited validity in certain areas.

    Somewhere somehow people are making billions of dollars off this, mark my words, and they are laughing their arses off at the rest of us.

  6. Enough With These Men! says:

    “But there are some interesting ideas out there on this. That biologically a woman who has been with more partners is seen as less sexually or romantically valuable, whereas for women to some degree a man who has been, or potentially could be, with more partners may be more valuable.”

    Bullshit. Otherwise Vikram and Gurjeet would be listing all their previous “lays” in their bio-datas on Shaadi.com.

  7. I have a reply for this, but for the record I’m not ignoring you. I’m just really busy right now.

    Just a head’s up and acknowledging your comment.
    -Kamal

  8. “the math seems to work” – I’m not an evolutionary psychologist nor do I play one on TV.

    That said, their theories on these matters seem to have some coherence and accurately describe some aspects of human behavior. I really do think there are biologically driven differences in male and female behavior when it comes to matters of multiple partners and the impact of these partners in one’s “mating value” to another prospective partner.

    Now these could all be culture and what they call “memetics” – not genetics. A matter of language religion cultural transmitted ideas about gender, sexuality, family arrangements, proper behavior, and so on.

    If it is culturally created and constructed this does not change its reality, just its source – it also means that changing such attitudes is a matter of changing minds and emotions and the environment that creates them.

    If it is biological and hereditary then culture can suppress it, or encourage it, but not really do away with the underlying driving forces. Just re-channel them. Which accounts for the differing ways different cultures deal with courtship and marriage and sexual rituals and practices, but the underlying tensions (monogamy versus polygamy, adultury versus fidelity, jealousy, and so on.)

    If something is biological in its origin this does not mean that we as people can not overcome or modify it, to degrees, or that real world social institutions will not trump it – but it does mean tat under the surface it will remain and perhaps emerge itself in other ways.

    I think there are profoundly innate reasons for slight differences in the instinctive behaviors of men and women when it comes to love marriage sex and family.

    These differences can be over exaggerated and used as excuses for particular types of pet behavior that either men or women want to indulge in, or they can be looked at something that people should conquer, or any number of views in between.

    But dismissing the very possibility of biologically driven differences between men and women in this matter seems to be a mistake to me, often human realities are not as we would want them to be, or in accordance with our ideals or emotional yearnings. I try to see things as they are, not as I or anyone else would like them to be, there does appear

    Of course I could be wrong, unlike a lot of people, I’m not emotionally attached to being right on this point or wrong, I could care less, I’m more interested in seeing what’s there. For now biological explanations regarding the differences in male and female roles and how males and females react to the number of partners the respective other person has, makes more sense. But I can clearly see that culture matters, what does one culture encourage and another culture despise?

    The only thing I am emotionally attached to, is the idea of honestly trying to figure it out, without projecting my desires or ideals on the matter.

    Some ideas in the field of evolutionary psychology seem to accurately model and give reasons for differences in male and female behavior when it comes to matters of multiple partners.

    But some of what I am observing around me might simply be cultural traces, leftovers from past social engineering, by elites, of male and female roles in the West. There is an old history of social engineering marital, romantic, and sexual roles in the west going back centuries.

    There is actually literature from clergy or from aristocracy discussing, and proposing, policies to alter the common folks morality. Anything that hits print (even when print ws limited to the elite, when only the elite could even read) is going to be more circumspect and only roughly describe what people were actually doing and implementing on the ground.

    Anyway, it it all ends up being wrong then I’ll just change my mind to reflect what then appears to be true from the evidence on hand. Period. Unlike either Mens Rights/MRA or Womens Rights/Feminists I don’t have an underlying agenda to push, other than trying to observe, reflect, experience, read, weigh and figure what really appears to be going on. In truth.

    But to each their own.

  9. Enough With These Men! says:

    “There is actually literature from clergy or from aristocracy discussing, and proposing, policies to alter the common folks morality.”

    What does that literature say?

  10. Good question. Though it deals with American realities and not British ones, there are overlaps – I recommend quickly skimming through the book “Making Men Moral: Social Engineering During the Great War” – it’s an academic source, dealing with the USA and not England, but it’s a good place to cherry pick names and themes.

    The topic is far broader than the WW I era, I’m looking at themes going back to the beginning of British Empire. But WW I is a good place to start.

    I’m not giving you a cop-out answer or a slippery answer, but it’s a huge topic and difficult to summarize – a 300 year long intellectual conversation and time consuming discourse between generations thinkers and writers, on a blog comment. I will say a few things and from time to time perhaps post more on it.

    I could say that Bertrand Russell and certain elite thinkers in his circle wanted – at one point – to abolish marriage and the family, sterilize most workers and keep only a few as breeders, and encourage a light hearted mirthful promiscuous sexuality without practical consequences to the state (e.g. no pregnancy) – and that the abolition of the family theme was withdrawn from at another time. I could point out that other elite circles were interested in engineering mass sexual morality along a different line, e.g. Victorian morality and the glorification of family. I could pluck a dozen other themes out of thin air, contradictory themes because this was a conversation and debate, not a consensus.

    But what I will do is point out a few things, quickly, as far as sources and people. It’s hard to cover a couple of centuries, but here is where you might find yourself wanting to start. Pick here and there, and build a larger web of readings.

    There was a general literary and intellectual conversation, along the lines of ‘what is to be done with the masses’ appears in upper class English thought from the 1600s to the 20th century, shortly before WW II it sort of submerges.

    In it Anglican clergy, economists, belles letterists, socialists, liberals, conservatives, royalists and republicans (with a small r) all initially of upper class, and then of upper middle class as well, discussed the morals of the English common classes, social engineering, desired aims for society, and debated these matters. Reading this literature with a careful eye (which most people lack) reveals a good deal about the assumptions of these classes, their hopes, and their fears. Reading the Imperial and Colonial conversations alongside brings out nuances to your understanding of British Imperialism.

    Paying attention to interconnections (University connections, peerages, Clubs attended, family ties and marriages, feuds and debates) is important.

    And paying attention to the intended audience of these books and authors is critical. None of these guys wrote in a vacuum. Most people today read and they are missing something – the context. Who is the intended audience, what were their assumptions, what was important to them?

    Before I go on, context is important – vital.

    One feature of British reform and social engineering writings was understatement. Understatement was a general feature of upper class speech and writing – period. Knowing with whom you were speaking, their level, their likely education, what was appropriate to disclose and speak of and what was frankly not of their concern – today we would speak of “plausible deniability”, there was a tacit assumption that select readers would have hermeneutic tools to unlock more certain writings, and non select readers could read into things as they will.

    I had a couple of older professors in my first few of years of college. Guys in their 70s (they would be in their late 80s or pushing 90 now) who were educated in a very different way that contemporary scholars.

    I had more than one professor point out to me that older writers wrote on more than one level, employing subtle allusions, a type of “coded speak” to carry on more subtle conversations in their books with people of their own circles or class – you wrote one level for a general readership (which back then was almost elite by today’s standards anyway, few people read much less than read well), and then you wrote on a different more subtle level for a more closed inner circle.

    Amusingly enough, at a cafe I ran into an older lady, who was feeling very chatty, she was quite wealthy with a classical Liberal Arts education, and was intrigued by the fact that I was actually reading a book. We chatted for a bit and she started talking about the lost art of literacy, I mentioned a couple of older authors and off the back she said (to the general effect, a paraphrase) ‘those guys wrote for a different audience. If you weren’t their audience you would walk away with quite a different impression of what they were trying to say. You have to read between the lines boy’

    I found it interesting that she agreed with a few of my professors, also of the same generation. The philosopher, Leo Strauss, reportedly often would impress on his students the understanding that when it came to readings of Enlightenment era philosophers, you have to understand that they often wrote on three or even four levels. One for fellow enlightenment philosophers, one for the State and their government or crown patrons, one for the clergy, and one for the few middle class “commoners” who actually could, and would, read and get a hold of their writings.

    So I am repeating this to the point of tediousness, not just to hear myself talk. It should not be forgotten that it used to be widely understood by well educated individuals that peoples in certain periods typically wrote on multiple levels, one addressed at their explicitly intended audience with specific subtexts understood by individuals who shared a technical vocabulary within their own circles or classes.

    The context missing when people happen across certain older books is a milieu of active debates in high Society regarding what were regarded as the common classes (all of us, in essence) – their morals, occupations, virtues, and defects. Active conversations and debates in person, in parlors, in gentleman clubs, in salons, and through books and papers and University lectures, on the directions policy should be implemented on these matters.

    Writings operated as prescriptive suggestions regarding policy and societal directions. This was to be read, thought on, and acted on by a narrow (though broadening) elite participating in the literary conversation. Many regarded such writings as explicitly prescriptive as well as propaganda. On this point, Carol Quigley is explicit in his “Anglo-American Establishment” that in Imperial discussions within Cecil Rhodes’s and Lord Milner’s circle they regarded policies of various editors and writers of the Times – editors who were within their group – straight forwarded as propaganda. They used the term propaganda in regards to other persuasive writing.

    Themes and Writers.

    In the 18th century Thomas Malthus, is an interesting writer. In the 20th century Bertrand Russell’s more obscure works deal with social and moral engineering and a vision of an ideal society shared widely within his class – some are broad, others go into some detail as for as specific social prescriptions. His thoughts on Education in Education and the Good Life. The Impact of Science on Society is a short read but vital, Proposed Roads to Freedom – basically pick out his works that are more obscure. Some are difficult to order on Amazon and absurdly expensive so hit up your library.

    John Ruskin is an important writer, who widely influenced a large and highly influential group. A Christian Socialist (in spite of being identified thusly, he really wasn’t all that “socialist” and his Christianity was.. nuanced) John Ruskin, is a good example of an advocate of moral and social engineering to achieve an ideal society. Some of his prescriptions are very interesting, some are quite bizarre.

    In Ruskin’s essays on the ideal society, some proposals dealt with a more heavily structured education – which puts him in the educational reform tradition. Ruskin was also a fan of book censorship and made many suggestions of wider state control, including explicit government regulation of marriage as a subtle behavior modification tactic – essentially giving or withholding state permission to marry to specific people as a reward or punishment for ideal, or not ideal, behavior as good citizens. He also suggested regular systems of State enquiry into family lives by means of community civil overseers or even clergy, bishops, who would send their reports to central authorities, all run by a type of graded bureaucracy.

    He displayed a sort of paternalism in with the landed country gentry would play a role as an aristocratic directorate (quite socialist eh?). Ruskin condemned equality and felt that in any community people could be divided into either “servile” and “lordly” peoples.

    This informed his thought on Empire. Ruskin’s Oxford lectures were essentially pro Imperial propaganda that animated in many thinkers of the time a sense of mission, of the absolute need to extend British sovereignty – or at least the sovereignty of English speakers – around the world as a civilizational mission.

    Ruskin’s writings were concerned with a chief aim, determine who was the most noble type of man, and who was the most wholesome type of subordinate man, and maintain the largest possible numbers of Noble types while maintaining an ideal number of such healthy subordinate classes.

    I’m paraphrasing according to my understanding. Read Ruskin yourself and see if you come to the same conclusion. Don’t read just one book or a few lectures though. It’s important to get a broader picture.

    Ruskin’s specific ideas of social engineering were echoed by the Christian Socialists in Maurice’s Circle, both Ruskin and the Maurice circle were widely influential on the Rhodes Group and Milner Group (and by extension on the thinkers who became the core of the Royal Institute for International Affairs/Chatham House) but they were also very influential on the more secular, and in some cases anti-religious, Fabian socialists and reformers. Elite class Fabian writers and speakers have a rich body of literature on these matters, enough to distract you for months or years of reading. Just read lots of H.G. Wells, not his fiction but his non-fiction. He was explicit on matters that Bertrand Russell was implicit in.

    There is literature regarding the legal status of Prostitution, which was seen by some thinkers as a way of “keeping middle class women pure” from the “debasement” of their husband’s sexuality by giving their husbands “defiled women” with whom to enjoy their lusts, and thereby preserve the sanctity of the middle class home. Never mind that these lower class common women were seen as essentially disposable tools of lust, defiled and dirty receptacles of lust to keep pure middle class British women high minded and free of sexual depravity. There’s a ton of literature on this, I leave it to those interested to dig around for it.

    At the same time there were other elitist thinkers who advocated a considerable loosening up of sexual morality and using government policy to encourage this, along with projections of future ideal situations. Much of this was wrapped up with Eugenics, the more liberal elitists saw sexualities’ chief troubles in the field of disease, and child bearing.

    Since many of the “common folk” who were bearing children as a result of their sexual habits were seen as rather flawed beings (don’t forget that one of the older connotations of commoner was one who bred in common, in other words one so lowly as to simply breed indiscrimiate and bear children without any clear sense of lineage). By even some of the most “liberal” elites in these circles, an idea existed that the humane and compassionate thing was to allow the “degenerate elements” among the commoners to be bred out of existence, so to avoid spoiling the gene pool. Many of the early Birth Control reformers hailing from upper class backgrounds held similar opinions – though reformers who were born on the lower margins of society and worked their way up naturally held different views…

    Anyway while reading any of this stuff keep in mind who the intended audiences are, their assumptions, their disagreements, their agreements, the trait of aristocratic understatement, and of the essentially upper class location of debates on social policies and agendas to mold Common and mass morality and behavior. Some of these people occupied a more Left Wing side, others a more Right Wing side, but they all operated on very similar assumptions.

    They are very interesting, and when you read some works in detail, you will find some interesting matters indeed – in particular looking at the Colonial and Imperial debates.

    And this is all I have time for now.

    -K

  11. Enough With These Men! says:

    Just wanted to acknowledge your reply to me and tell you that I’ve looked up the names you’ve mentioned and read a bit.

  12. No problem. Ruskin is very fascinating, Cecil Rhodes credits Ruskin with his own vision, as did a few other influential imperial reformer types. Sometimes a man is more important by those he inspired. The entire Fabian circle also stems largely out of Ruskin as far as inspiration and major themes.

    When my headache goes away i could probably also recommend a few other names.

    k.

  13. Enough With These Men! says:

    Some of the sites I visited, such as The Schiller Institute’s, write about the personalities you’ve mentioned in a way so as to prove that they wanted to replace traditional Judeo-Christian culture and ethics in the West with a multi-culti “pagan” ethos. In other words, Abrahamic ways = good and anything else = bad, which I don’t agree with at all.

    And what is it with this over-extended use of the word “pagan” as a catch-all phrase for ……….? What is it a catcha-all phrase for anyway?

    So that is normally why I don’t side with the conspiracy theorists.

  14. Fair enough, I don’t represent the Schiller Institute and they don’t represent me so I really can’t speak for them and vice versa.
    In fact I didn’t realize they were writing about some of these guys – I’d simply stumbled across some other stuff by them in the past.

    It is important to look at information and gauge it’s reliability apart from the source, and come to your own conclusions unfiltered by the source.
    The source matters insofar as it may taint, confuse, misdirect, either on purpose or unconsciously due to their own preconceptions and obsessions.
    Even this is useful, a person’s obsessions allows one to see what they are noticing to a hyper focused degree, and what they are missing.

    There’s a technique one sometimes run across in Intelligence and propaganda literature, it’s called “poison the well” – similar techniques are discussed (by other names however) in Christopher Simpson’s “Science of Coercion”, published by Oxford University Press.

    Basically an idea can easily be “tainted by association”. Let’s say a radical feminist says something that is true, and a conservative MRA blogger won’t believe it because of the source. A “game” blogger writes something true, and everyone at jezabel.com refuse to touch it with a 10 foot pole because of the source. Let’s say a madressa student happens to be apartment flat-mates with a pick-up artist, they become buddies and are seen often together in public.

    Or let’s say a local anti-immigration tea-party activist is seen having lunch several times with some local Chicano businessmen known to financially support Nation of Aztlán . You get the picture, “guilt by association” the well is poisoned – it makes it possible to hide things in plain sight with absurd ease, because plain sight is where few will ever think to look..

    This happens accidentally often enough, since coincidences do exist. However one would be surprised at the degree to which such things are consciously done in public open sources as a propaganda technique (Science of Coercion covers old pre-war realities but is very useful. The Michael Wilson archive I posted here has some interesting articles on this, Chomsky is a good source, there are several academic, non-conspiracy theorist sources on propaganda and psychological warfare that go into these techniques in painstaking detail. Once one learns how to recognize them it’s child’s-play to see them in use.

    Sometimes if one is lucky one can even find these things verified. I could say more but won’t. Anyway read the literature, it’s fun.)

    I think it is best not to let the over-extended usages of one group distort material too much. Take note of it, yes by all means. Because it indicates their mindset and their obsessions, which could very well indicate things to take very seriously such as a source’s tendency to lie about certain things, or to fail to mention other things, or to mention other things too much.

    As for “pagan” they are probably using it to describe anything non-Judeo-Christian. Or representing non Judeo-Christian moral values, which is a bit of a canard – of course they doth protest too much.

    The term, Judeo-Christian, is in itself a bit silly, “Judeo-Christian”, because Christians 200 years ago sure as hell wanted nothing to do with Jews, and vice versa. But I’ll save that for another day..

    Ancient Roman pagans used to criticize Christians for being debauched sluts. While it’s hard to know if ancient writings are truthful or not, there may have been some grounds for this. The Christian agape feast (the ancestor of the mass) was highly suspect to Roman pagans, who thought this “agape” or love, was really “love” of an immoral sort, en masse. Images of orgies in catacombs come to mind. Fornication in graveyards is something that some people have done now and then, but whole bloody orgies in the crypts of dead saints is taking it a little too far.

    Then again, these were the Romans complaining. The Roman pagans were the enemies of the Christians. And your enemies are liable to make up any-old-thing about you. Like Mullahs make up stuff about pandits, or like Hindutva agitators make up stuff about Muslims, or like Fundamentalist Protestants make up stuff about Catholics, or like traditionalist Catholics make up stuff about freemasons. Or like blacks make up stuff about whites and whites make up stuff about blacks, or Mexicans.

    In all cases there is truth behind the lies, sometimes obvious truths – the best stereotypes are the ones most obvious on the face. But the lie is in the truth as it filters out exceptions and may skew things to make the small look big, and the big look small. Pagan in contemporary Christian parlance means morally depraved, debauched, dissolute, ungodly, worshiping many gods and generally un-wise in the ways of the soul, and too clever in the ways of the world.

    1500 years ago Pagan just meant redneck, more or less. And to Roman non-Christians, who we now call “pagans” Christian meant someone who took this “love everyone” business a little too liberally, under the robes or sheets. So to speak.

    This is a matter of history and people can simply look it up. Now, it’s possible these pagan Roman perceptions could simply have been the result of propaganda, or perhaps they had some truth to them. And maybe it was both. Later Christian ideas of pagan Rome was that it was a debauched place of whoredom and filth. Maybe both of them were right and wrong at the same time. Who knows.

    But this does show that one man’s pagan is another man’s moral and ethical person, and another man’s Christian is yet another man’s amoral emotional debauchee. Among modern Conservative Christians, Pagan means “morally depraved and ungodly” so whenever you see the word pagan in their literature, just substitute that phrase and you’ll do fine..

    Personally, I read sources from the left wing to the right wing, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Traditionalist Catholic, I read Atheists, I read Communists, I read neo-Pagans, I read Right Wing conservatives, I read HBD types, I read Progressives. I read all with my own criteria but also open to what they say because my aim is truth not their preconceptions, nor my own preconceptions.

    I try not to allow the fact that someone else’s worldview differs from mine to distract me from the possibility that what they are talking about may have some validity.

    One person’s conspiracy theory is another person’s meta-politics. And vice versa. Right Wingers think people like Noam Chomsky are conspiracy theorists – the fact that he’s one of the biggest names in modern linguistics and is an intellectual heavyweight somehow doesn’t matter. On the Other hand people like Chomsky look down upon and call John Birch Society types paranoid conspiracy theorists.

    Both are right and both are wrong. In any case, I recommend casting a very wide net and looking at many sources, from many perspectives, if you have the time. If there is a good university library near you, then you may want to look for academic works on Ruskin, Rhodes, Milner, Malthus, the Fabian society, Victorian era social engineering, education reform, Prussian education and British sympathizers, and similar topics.

    If it’s a really good library then it may also have some of the primary sources. To be read with real caution and an eye out for double meanings and coded-language directed at the writer’s own peers and classes. Academic works sometimes allude to certain things that you can then follow up on via footnotes and just check the original sources, “read between the lines” and figure out pretty quickly the dominant themes in the discourses these writers participated in.

    A lot of internet sites are only useful in terms of pointing out a direction or mentioning specific sources to check. Sometimes very useful information is given out by people one might find noxious, in a sense I’ve always had the gut feeling this was a consciously employed ploy. You put interesting information in front of people where they will either be disinterested in looking, annoyed to look, afraid to look, or simply too nauseated to look.

  15. Enough With These Men! says:

    Quite frankly, I wouldn’t go to the University Library to read these guys. I’m just not interested in what they have to say beyond what I can easily glean in my own home on the internet. There are so many ideas and ideologies out there – millions! What is the point in reading about them? We already know that this duniya is a web-like matrix of impermanant ideas and illusions.

  16. I don’t blame you actually. It is a web, a matrix, and half the fun is seeing through its shifting illusions.

    Sometimes it is seductively, hauntingly, beautiful. And then it melts into heart rending horror. And then it reappears to us in strange amusement…

    I just have an unusually active interest in these things. If you ever happen to stumble on anything about Ruskin though, you might find an interesting read. Don’t go out of your way looking for it of course.

    Interesting information tends to have a knack of finding its way to us when we least expect it.

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