Tuesday, January 31, 2012

On The Hypocrisy of Doing Nothing, Part 1

Elsewhere on IOZ this one said:

All the commentary here, or Floyd, or Silber (would he allow it) or similar seems to be endlessly swirling around the concept "We're screwed; let's complain about it." Which does indeed have some value. Yet, is there the nexus of a change here?

To which responded an anonymous as follows:

"We're screwed; let's complain about it."
Or let's post, hmmm...pictures of armed mercs, a helmeted skull, a fat guy kissing a cross, a medieval crucifixion scene, prisoners at Guantanamo, dead children, American flag draped coffins, more dead children with bullet holes in their heads, a portrait of a war criminal,...
And Tupac. Oh yeah, "Fuck all y'all"

Response log:

Note the "which does again have some value"  Complaining about it is good.  There might, though, be more fun for all beyond complaining.
The things you are mocking, incidentally, are things that you may find of value in reaching those who don't already agree with you.  Have the courage to help your lesser-aware sisters and brothers come to see some of the things that most people reading IOZ already know.  Even if they scorn you at first.
There is a certain level of elitism among the IOZ/Silber/Floyd crowd that, while deserved (as much so as the Jon Stewart audience "knowing" more than the Hannity & Colmes audience), serves only to separate them in dialogue and action from their fellow humans who are not quite as intelligent.  Or, alternatively, who may have different life experiences and pressures that don't allow them the time or freedom to follow certain avenues of learning and inquiry.
We are our sisters' keepers.  The clannishness developing here risks evolving into the same deadly morass that has ensnared most everyone else.  Reach back into the tar pit, baby.  You might be a little closer to the edge, but you're sinking anyway.  It's going to take one hell of a human chain to have any chance of getting out.
Lastly, 2Pac pwns you.  

Issues here orbit the traditional realization of the Stage Third entity: "I live in a planet controlled by violent, selfish elites and the idiots who serve them.  I know that there is no way to stop them save by force, but am unable to risk my life and/or property in doing so."

Which is fine.  Elites do tend to kill and steal from those who oppose them.  The choice to limit one's actions and tolerate the brutalizing of others may need to be made.  Making that choice, and yet still lamenting the awful state of the world, is just fine.  There's no inherent hypocrisy in it.  Pay your taxes, or you go to jail.  Don't defend your fellow humans in the Middle East, or you will be killed/tortured.

The pointing out of the sad state of only being able to whine about it, though, is not a bad thing.  It is true that all "we" can do is whine about it, unless we want to increase the risk to our lives/property.  There's no shame to admitting that--unless one feels, well, shame, deep down, about not doing something more than whining.  It is morally permissible to not start a revolution in order to preserve one's life or the life of those who depend upon one.

Which is to say, of course, that it is terrible and morally impermissible.  Let there be no illusions about the selfishness of the partially-enlightened American choice to whine on blogs but never pick up the pitchforks and torches.

Hypocrites.  Because if it was your family or loved ones, you'd probably fight back.  So where's the human connection?  It should be just as strong for others.  That lack of connection is why we're all suffering.  If we all fought back when sick tyrants like Obama killed our families and children far away, the tyrants wouldn't last.  So lament our sickness.  Treat it.  Hope it can be cured; work at curing it.  But don't pretend there's no built-in hypocrisy and cowardice in the decision.  This one lives contentedly with it.  In the jungle, you fight as hard and as nastily as you can.  Which is why it's always going to be the jungle.  Lightspring embrace.


  1. ". This one lives contentedly with it. In the jungle, you fight as hard and as nastily as you can. Which is why it's always going to be the jungle. Lightspring embrace. "

    Like supporting or participating in an OWS event for instance? Oh wait..never mind. It's only physical confrontation that's acceptable for any sort of rebellion, right?

  2. Dear JM, your response warranted a new post: