Monday, July 27, 2020

The nightmare is upon us

The postmodernist nightmare that Helen Pluckrose and others have forecast is now upon us.

In the document tranch that follows, you will meet a group called ZYD, which apparently plays a role within the government of King County, Oregon. ZYD stands for "Zero Youth Detention.” Their online materials seem laudable enough — but behind the scenes, they are distributing pure anti-white racism and anti-Enlightenment propaganda. Their thinking has clearly been molded by the postmodernist race-obsessives who dominate our universities.

The following documents were uncovered by a writer/filmmaker/propagandist named Christopher Rufo. I don't know very much about him, but he seems to be a YAFL -- Yet Another Fucking Libertarian. You know how I feel about those guys.

So don't count me as a member of Rufo's fan club. That said, I strongly doubt that he concocted this evidence; the documents speak for themselves.

Apparently, there really is a plan afoot in Seattle to abolish -- not overhaul: abolish -- the justice system. I strongly doubt that this scheme has the support of the majority of black people. Most African Americans are more conservative and level-headed than the "woke" would have us believe.

Dig it: Objectivity, individuality, the written word and politeness are now considered evil -- the identifying markers of the fallen white race. (What, no reference to the insidious Dr. Yakub?) ZYD implies that Black people are not capable of politeness, objectivity, progress, or any of the other "sins" traditionally associated with Enlightenment values.

In the second paragraph of this post, I described these documents as examples of anti-white racism. Actually, these texts exemplify anti-black racism.

You may be puzzled by the reference to "defensiveness." This term means that white people may not counter any claim or argument offered by a black person or by a "Woke" thought-controller like Robin DiAngelo. If you are white, you are not allowed to speak one word which might upset your racial betters. Reality must always be determined for you, not by you. Interracial dialogue on the basis of equality is considered offensive. 

The texts also categorize "either/or thinking" and "power over others" as uniquely white characteristics, a formulation which will surprise anyone who has studied the history of, say, China -- or any other nation, for that matter. It seems to me that the "Woke" scoundrels who gave us cancel culture are the guiltiest of "either/or thinking," and they have obviously become power-mad.  

If you have followed the work of Helen Pluckrose, you'll recognize this language. These texts offer classic examples of postmodernist thought, or anti-thought.

Helen Pluckrose has been one of a handful of people demanding that the left formulate a response to this madness; other voices include Stephen Fry, John McWhorter and Bill Maher. If the left doesn't find some way to counter this attack on classic liberal values -- if the left does not stand up for free speech and against Identity politics -- the right will take on that task. Even if Trump is defeated in November, Trumpism will gain new adherents. The madness of today's pseudoleft will make the right seem like the only option.

(Being a stye-eyed pessimist, I'm still betting that Trump will eke out a win, using a combination of elaborate smears and vote-rigging.)

Thanks to the public's disgust with Identity politics, libertarians have been regaining their muscle. Only a few years ago, some observers wrote about that movement in the past tense. Now Rufo and Jordan Peterson and a growing army of right-wing intellectuals have achieved new prominence by offering this argument against the Woke: Identity Politics is "Marxist" and only unfettered capitalism can save us. Young people -- those perpetual suckers for the false dichotomy -- are being told that they must choose between Ayn Rand or Robin DiAngelo. No third option.

Here's a paranoid-but-necessary question: How much of this allegedly "left-wing" madness is actually being promoted by the Russians? And how much "left-wing" online discussion is actually the work of far-right wolves wearing sheep's clothing?

I'm not the only writer to suggest that the Trumpists invented the "defund the police" mantra. That crazy proposal serves their interests, not ours. It also serves Trump's interests when leftists attack Mount Rushmore, the Star-Spangled Banner, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and the very foundation of our democracy.

One of the founders of Black Lives Matter, Patrisse Cullors, wants "defund the police" to be part of the Democratic platform, even though that idea is hideously unpopular. In other words, she wants Trump to win.

Not many months ago, Cullors heartily endorsed Bernie Sanders -- the candidate pushed by Russia, and by Russia-friendly pseudo-lefties like Krystal Ball and Matt Taibbi. At the time, Cullors made it clear that she detested Biden.

Cullors presumes that she speaks for all black people. Does she? "The Establishment" didn't give us Biden: Black voters did.

In recent years, three inherently racist words -- "looks like me" -- have crept into our national discourse. Certain sick pseudoleftists would have you believe that nothing matters but skin color. This attitude arrogantly dismisses the actual votes cast by black people: If African Americans cared only about the "looks like me" factor, they could have chosen Booker or Harris, but they didn't.

(I would have been happier with Booker than with Biden, frankly. But the decision wasn't mine.)

I am convinced that most African Americans are less radical than are those who pretend to speak for that community. From the NYT:
“To see people standing in Portland destroying property and not actually doing the work of advocating for Black people was disturbing,” said Rachelle Dixon, the vice chair of the Multnomah County Democrats and an organizer in the Black community. “I think they’re a distraction from the everyday needs of people of color, especially Black people. My life is not going to improve because you broke the glass at the Louis Vuitton store.”
The BLM movement deserved our wholehearted support until they became a de facto arm of the Boogaloo movement, which wants to ignite a race war. Never forget that the Boogalooers support Black Lives Matter. The advocates for a second civil war believe that BLM is, or can be, a catalyst for racial separation.

Are they right? I hope not.

The Russians also have an obsession with Black Lives Matter, and not as opponents. Putin would love to see the U.S. devolve into civil war.

Did you see this?
Riots in downtown Richmond over the weekend were instigated by white supremacists under the guise of Black Lives Matter, according to law enforcement officials.

Protesters tore down police tape and pushed forward toward Richmond police headquarters, where they set a city dump truck on fire.

Police declared the event an “unlawful assembly” and ordered people to leave, later deploying tear gas.

Six people were arrested. The mayor of Richmond thanked the Black Lives Matter protesters he said tried to stop the white supremacists from spearheading the violence.
This is Charles Manson's "Helter Skelter" scheme on steroids.

I think that this sort of provocateur action has happened a lot, both on the internet and in real life. In certain online Democratic forums, the most intransigent apostles of Identity politics may well be white supremacist infiltrators who have learned how to speak postmodernist argot.

Postmodernism is a form of Fascism. Although "fascism" is a famously difficult word to define, I've come to understand it as an anti-Enlightenment movement which denigrates reason, science and democracy while focusing on race and tribal identity as the most important factors of human existence. The Fascist wants to see the world's real estate apportioned by genetics. Separation -- physical and cultural -- is the goal.

By this definition, postmodernism is simply another form of Fascism. Postmodernism, like Nazism, is an anti-Enlightenment movement obsessed with tribal identity and cultural purity. Postmodernism, like Nazism, is opposed to science, democracy and reason. Adolf Hitler was the ultimate advocate of Identity politics.

In normal times, I prefer nuanced argument to absolutist statements. But history proves that nuance cannot defeat the swastika. Therefore, I offer this absolute:

Postmodernism is utterly evil. Do not interact with anyone infected with this variant of the fascist virus. No advocate of postmodernism should be allowed to hold a teaching position in any American university, or to have any influence on governmental decisions. Whenever you encounter an apologist for postmodernism, visualize a swastika carved into his or her forehead. Further debate is pointless. Implacable opposition is the only moral response.
Queer theory is the most evil and pernicious form of postmodernism. This is the nonsense that is underlying the trans movement, and it is all about destroying all appropriate boundaries between the sexes and the generations. Acceptance of aberrant sexual behavior, including pedophilia, is the goal. It also being codified into law, with women's sex-based protections and sports greatly at risk. It is closely tied to transhumanism, which is Mengele-style eugenics on steroids. This garbage is being taught in universities. It needs to be gotten rid of. JK Rowling and real feminists have gotten death threats because they recognize material reality, which has nothing to do with "identity politics." THIS more than anything is what prompted the Harper's letter.
In my head, I've been composing an essay along those very lines. Not that I oppose "aberrant sexual behavior": My attitude toward sex tends to be "anything goes," with a few obvious exceptions like pedophilia and the grosser forms of pubic indecency.

What bothers me most is the insistence that it is "hate speech" even to consider the possibility that gender dysphoria might be a form of mental aberration. That idea is a scientific question which must be addressed in a scientific manner -- through uncensored debate and a search for evidence. The left now insists that the question is settled, and that any further inquiry is just an excuse for hate. The desperate intransigence of this attitude suggests that the underlying science for their position must be questionable or nonexistent. If the evidence were conclusive, open debate would be welcomed.

This issue is difficult for me because the historical figure I most admire is Joan of Arc, who was a transvestite (although most Catholics are loathe to use that word). Then again, she also had conversations with angels -- which means that she may not be the best example for those who argue that transvestites are mentally normal.
Oops. Obviously, I meant to write "PUBLIC indecency."
Well, one thing I agree with is that agents provocateurs are the source of the violence and property destruction at these protests, so I don't think it's accurate to say that such things are not helping minorities........since the ACTUAL protestors are not doing any of that stuff (I'm sure there are also opportunists involved as well, the "just want to watch the world burn" know, real anarchists). I've seen pictures from Portland from people who actually live there and drive around the areas of protest in the morning to take the photos. Aside from a bit of graffiti and a couple boarded up areas (some of which were boarded up even before the protests began), it doesn't look anything like a war zone, but rather like a normal city doing normal things. So I think a lot of the violence and destruction had been blown out of proportion by the media (MSM and "independent"). What isn't blow out of proportion is federal agents shooting tear gas canisters directly at protestors and making the situation far worse than it previously was.

As to the rest, I tend to agree. I have a good friend who is trans, and she simply wants to live what she sees as her best life. She's not an activist and simply wants to be acknowledged as the person she believes she is. She also came to the realization that she was a she and not a he, when she was in her 50's, so it wasn't youthful gender confusion or encouragement or anything. She certainly would have preferred to keep living as the gender she was born into. Of course, I agree that scientific study should be made (unbiased, hopefully) into the issue to determine if there really is a scientific explanation or if it is merely a psychological issue.
99.99% of the American populace, reading the names of the exotic cranks whom Mr. Cannon, for reasons which continue to escape me, considers mortal perils to the Republic, would perform their best imitations of owls.

"Who? Who? Who? Who? Who?"

Very funny, Bill. Those alleged "exotic cranks," and the mind-set they represent, are actually quite famous. The right makes them so. You should traverse that side of the web every so often, just to see what's going on. Donald Trump would not be president without the fury engendered by rightists as they discuss political correctness and Identity politics.

I've seen this "imitate the ostrich" stance before. In the 1970s, many on the left denied that the evangelicals would ever attract real numbers or might ever attain political power. The "Jesus freaks" were dismissed as cranks -- a fringe movement destined to remain a historical footnote.

Ever since, I've understood that today's fringe could well be tomorrow's unstoppable force.

Al Qaeda and ISIS began as fringe movements. So did the Boxers...the Jacobins...the Lutherans...the Nazis...Marxism...Christianity...
Gus, I understand your concern about your friend. Many of us have met people like that, and I certainly don't enjoy making such people feel bad. That said, I refuse to "list my pronouns" or to perform any other annoying acts of virtue-signalling. Gender dysphorics are only 0.06 percent of the population. They have no right to demand that everyone else -- 99.4 percent of the population -- must identify themselves in a certain way. How would you respond if Bronies or Furries demanded that all others must explicitly identify themselves as non-Bronies or non-Furries?

Besides, how do they propose to ENFORCE this demand?

This is one aspect of the postmodernist left that has always bugged the hell out of me: They act as though they have Ultimate Power to tell everyone else what to say and how to act. Whenever I hear someone like Virginia Heffernan snootily insist that so-and-so must be "cancelled," I wonder: "What gives HER the right?" When she exits her home and encounters rain, does she point at the sky and ORDER the rain to stop? What's the enforcement mechanism?

Back to your friend: Maybe she's suffering from a mental problem, and maybe she isn't. I don't know. The science, insofar as I've looked at it, is far from conclusive. What I cannot abide are activists who insist that the issue is settled, because I know for a fact that it is NOT. We'll probably be studying this one for the next hundred years.

I've seen estimates that one out of eight people in this country have mental health issues. Some say that the percentage is even higher, but for now, let's go with the "one out of eight" figure. If your friend is Individual #8, is that REALLY so bad? I've also read that business leaders, artists and other high achievers tend to be Individual #8. It's possible to be a highly functional member of society while also having, shall we say, a major psychological quirk.

Again, Joan of Arc provides us with an excellent example.
Sorry. I made a typo. I should have said "0.6 percent of the population."
Joseph, King County is in Washington state, not Oregon. The Zero Youth Detention program is on the county website. The program appears to be trying to improve community involvement with youth and to use alternative conflict resolution to reduce juvenile detention. I don't think that would work in all cases, but it might have a positive effect. They have a goal of reducing youth detention to zero -- not the same thing as abolishing prisons, especially not for adult convicted criminals. Here is the website:

Mr. Rufo should name names. Who authored the documents he obtained and what position(s) does/do the author(s) hold? When were these ideas presented and to whom? This looks like a PowerPoint presentation to me, with one or more person's views. J

Mr. Cannon, I think I will pass on your invitation to go and survey the fever swamps of Da Intertoobz, whether Right or Left. I suspect that your sojourns there have given you a different sort of mental fever. You spend so much time reading these wackos that you have come to regard them as more significant than they are. While I have no statistics, I would guess that for every one fringe group that actually climbs to prominence, there are at least 99 others which vanish into oblivion.

However, if Corona-chan had never invaded this country, and the economy were still limping along under a facade of health, as it had been doing in the Benedict Donald years before Corona-chan struck, then such "culture war" issues might indeed ascend to prominent places in the alleged minds of my fellow White Amurkans.

But not now. Things are bad enough now that my fellow palefaces will actually need to THINK before they vote, rather than voting from their tribal reflexes and primitive emotions, or sitting on their sorry lazy butts and not voting at all. (Of course, some people do want to vote, but are prevented from doing so by Russopublican dirty tricks, or other factors beyond their control. I do not derogate them; they are victims, not slackers.)

Yeah, I agree with you completely, actually. My friend does insist that family and friends refer to her as "her", "she", etc. and not use her "dead" name (birth name). I think that's reasonable and she certainly doesn't expect total strangers to be able to guess (though, despite being older, she doesn't look much like a male anymore, aside from the fact she is 6'5" tall).

As to mental issues, I've been a "creative" type my whole life, and have had to subsume a lot of those creative urges in order to have a reasonably financially secure life for myself and my loved ones. It has never been particularly easy, though I don't know if I qualify as a #8 (I was treated for depression in my 20's, which my dad was also treated for in his 40's). But yeah, I think brilliance in any field tends to go hand in hand with psychological "quirks". At least it seems that way to me (and I'm certainly not suggesting I or my friend are brilliant in any way......just, different, as you said in a previous post).
J, I apologize for getting the state wrong. I may rewrite the post slightly. Thanks for pointing that out.

I looked up other documents placed online by ZYD, and they seemed quite similar in terms of fonts and layout and writing style. Obviously, a paper meant to be published online will be more circumspect than a paper meant for internal distribution. I don't think that Rufo concocted the things. (Why would he open himself up to a lawsuit?) The question is, how seriously are these ideas being taken behind the scenes?
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