Tuesday, January 31, 2012

On the Hypocrisy of Doing Nothing, Part 2

In response to Part 1, JM writes:

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?

Rebellion is always going to be "unacceptable" inasmuch as the powers-that-be are concerned; if the question is whether or not this one believes that any sort of rebellion is acceptable that does not include violence, most certainly.  Acceptable, but unlikely to accomplish anything other than pressure release and the overall maintenance of the system.

The boggle here is likely how difficult it is to accept that nothing will tip the system without violence.  It took the panthers shooting back and fear of race war to shake off token civil rights; it took the socialists fighting strikebreakers to do the same for labor laws in the early chunk of the 20th century.  All of this one's whining and accurate criticism about Obama/Bush/Whoever will accomplish nothing except personal stress relief and intellectual development, just like the accumulated complaints of Silber, Floyd and IOZ.  Worthy--very worthy, and of priceless human value, and not in any way bad, yes--but the fact remains that it will not change anything.  The little brown kids are still being starved and murdered, and all we're doing in Anglo-America is whining about how bad it is.  To no geopolitical end.

Take a cue from the NRA on this one--politicians DO prefer unarmed peasants.  And for a very good reason.  Like, Robespierre and stuff.  Nach, a few pea-shooters will do little-to-nothing against the current FIRE/MIC without herd theory, but the essence of the message is true.  They're going to keep slaughtering the planet until someone makes them stop.

The angry reaction here comes from someone who has convinced her or himself that by posting on blogs, sharing articles describing horrible things, chatting up friends or reading books, one will help "build awareness" and be able to positively influence the policy of nation-states without the shedding of blood.  Nope.  This train ain't stoppin' until it's blown off the rails.

No harsh judgment to those who read/share/exchange, or who exhibit private horror.  That's human, good, priceless, and should never be stopped.  What should drop, however, is the illusion that, by being peacefully outraged by things, even in the company of physical or internet friends, one will fix the problem.  Accept that you're doing nothing, or perhaps, that you can do nothing--that you're powerless to change things, even if you did start breaking the rules, or that you're not willing to make change because you don't want to get yourself or your loved ones hurt.

It seems like a tough pill to swallow.  The cognitive dissonance, and resulting fury for some in realizing that, is caused by their defensive subconscious belief that some form of raising awareness is going to help stop the killing.  The "I believe in peaceful talking to stop the murderers from committing further genocide and environmental suicide for the entire species" ruse is as desperately important to most of these bloggers as is the beaten wife's belief that her husband really cares deep down, and will soon stop drinking.  Hey, good for you.  I hope it works out that way.  Why so serious?

The choice myself > murdered little Afghani kids or my family > murdered little Pakistani kids is like the hypothetical, "If there was only one coconut on the island, enough to sustain you or the other lost traveler until help arrived, but not enough for both of you, would you kill her/him to get the coconut for yourself?"

Yes?  No?  Would you sit there and die while complaining about it?  Noble--but then, paying your taxes to the MIC to fund nukes and soldier salaries and armored humvees is not just sitting there.  Refusing to lift strong arms to stop someone from murdering thousands of innocent children a year is not just.

The selfish, horrible choices are being made here, too.

Therein lies a solution: let's all be honest about it.  Go on the news, or just in your social circle, and stop dicking around.  Instead, say, "God yes, Obama's a murderer, but I'm not going to stop him; I'm too afraid of his security forces."  Let's have a large population of acknowledged realists, instead of an internet population-in-hiding of people pretending they're accomplishing something just by typing and whining.  This one is comfortable with it--this one's choice is to take that coconut, baby.  Get enough people in a country with that attitude, not hiding it behind silk, and that's where the mob comes from.  Vague notions of white social justice touched with "don't hurt a flower"-style pacifism have a zero percent record of accomplishing anything.

Sharpen your aim--don't hate the player; hate the game.

Not a very good piece on the whole, but the refrain sentiment echoes real: you're playing the game too, in your own interest, and you have the luxury and freedom to whine about why Obama is beating you.


  1. You yourself sir, haven't done shit.
    I would love to go out and bomb the shit out of places willy nilly, but presidents and army recruitment offices are replacable and well, I think you're really, really underestimating the people participating in Occupy, here is some of the shit they go through:
    Hell, even Chris Floyd was optimistic about the Occupy demonstrations, no really.
    So my question is what do you suggest is an alternative to the Occupy demonstrations. I really would love to have an actual answer and not some vague bollocks with a Ice T Video embedded. And maybe you should show some initiative too because you're doing the same damn thing you hate others for doing.

    1. Long reply:


  2. jm, you may be missing something.

    (i'm not sure where ows comes into play, except that ioz cheers them on. strange bedfellows though, if i read the young occupiers right.)

    i read the critique of ioz' following as: couched in ioz' own critique of the dempublican american nation are unstated moral pre-&proscriptions. the natural implication (though vehemently denied at ioz) is that, were these moral pre-&proscriptions given force, the world would be a better place. therein lies the strangeness of ioz. a better world awaits, if only X. and yet, we will not X, but rather, blog. (but this states it inaccurately, because ioz' real answer is: don't be a jerk.)

    but that's the point. "don't be a jerk" is a moral proscription on the same order as "don't sin"--and first, as nebulous. (in other words, don't be a jerk. how? the lack of clarity births hypocrisy. but as importantly, why? the function, too, births hypocrisy.)

    second, ignores certain truths to human existence, not the least of which is a game of survival in a finite world. arka's line of thought runs close/parallel to my own. simply: we do not live in a meritorious world. (digressing, but also, more: we cannot live in a meritorious world. true for two reasons: 1. the whole of the world is not ours to create meritoriously. and 2. humans cannot be habituated to life in a meritorious world.)

    i think, at the end of this line, the result is generically equivalent. no matter lib, con, dem, rep, anarchist, occupier, capitalist, socialist, &c., the human challenge is (and ever was): in a chaotic universe, construct an ordered haven (read "society")--not so ordered as to stifle--not so chaotic as to overwhelm.

    (lately, borrowing heavily from jordan peterson.) http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4655083947961373668#

    1. Very good points, puppy, and ones that IOZ has lamented often. JM is being defensive without reason; there is no hatred of "JM" or "IOZ readers" or "IOZ" coming from here. The reason for an angry reaction to this one's point is that someone doesn't want to admit that blogging, or making peaceful, obedient "demonstrations," do nothing. Of course they do nothing--we all know it--but having it pointed out can be painful if you're trying to live in the illusion that you're effecting geopolitical change just by blogging.

      Salons didn't change France; guillotines and communards did.

  3. i should have appended to "overwhelm":

    "done right, you/we live. done wrong, you/we die."