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Culture War Roundup for the week of December 26, 2022

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Okay. But when the whole world is liberal and TFR has crashed to 1.2, what's the plan?

The TFR crashing to 1.2 is not that big an issue. Japan/SK/Singapore etc. have had this for decades now and they're still mostly fine. Yes there is economic stagnation in the case of Japan but their social structure and order still survives and will continue to do so.

The reason western culture is incompatible with a long term TFR of 1.2 (and no migration) is because their brand of atomised individualism relies on a strong welfare state to ameliorate the mistakes humans naturally make when removed from a social system that tells them what to do based on metis and a welfare state is what is incompatible with a low TFR (barring the AI singularity leading to Luxury Automated Gay Space Communism). This doesn't mean that all worldly cultures are incompatible with such a TFR and most will actually be fine.

With such a low TFR the Western welfare state will eventually have to go out with a whimper and individuals will be forced to confront the full consequences of their poor choices. The lack of family ties and bonds (promoted indirectly by Western culture itself) mean they'll have very little recourse to relief and there will unfortunately be generational scale suffering as people slowly realise the value of kith and kin and shift to a social contract more long term suited to the human psyche.

We'll probably end up going back to a nuclear or extended family model where the young earn and use the money to support their parents etc, not too different from the conservative social structure currently in place in Eastern societies. One person may end up having to support up to 2 parents each, but equally they get free childcare at home and someone always available to look after kids (with huge skin in the game) which is a huge benefit people pay tens of thousands for each year nowadays. It'll all probably even out to not be too much of an extra burden on the breadwinner. Once that happens on a societal scale things will by and large be fine around the world, and the march of technological progress should continue to make the Earth a better place to live for all of humanity long term.

I think when the inverted pyramid gets to top heavy, the West would rather open the borders than make the hard decisions and live with it. At that point, everyone I know and loved (and their few children) will likely be long gone and the populaces values so far removed from my own it might as well be a foreign country. So I guess I don’t really care.

The TFR crashing to 1.2 is not that big an issue. Japan/SK/Singapore etc. have had this for decades now and they're still mostly fine. Yes there is economic stagnation in the case of Japan but their social structure and order still survives and will continue to do so.

Unclear. Having a sub-replacement TFR presents a different sort of problem as the tendency continues. Right now Japan is old, but not catastrophically so; their largest cohort is in its 50's, and so at the peak of their earning potential. However, in 20 years those people will all be 20 years older, and given improvements in medical technology, not many of them will have died. A society where the single largest cohort is retirees is not something that has been seen before, and will stress the system in different ways.

Politics is war by other means.

Yes, this is basically how I feel after coming across leftist youtube, reddit, public behavior, twitter, or just your posts

Most of us already know what leftists are planning to do to our children, but thank you for saying it louder for the people who haven't realized it yet. I hope it inspires them to be more diligent about defending our community from threats by bad faith actors

"malding"?

Going by hamming distance, you should probably grab a mirror and check whether your hair's still all there.

"Hamming distance"??

The number of substitutions required to turn one string of characters into another. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamming_distance.

Thanks much!

GenZ/gamer slang for "really mad and causing a scene about it".

Initially used when someone bald was getting mad because bald people getting mad is apparently funnier. lol.

How do you keep up with what the kids are saying these days?

Because I am one. I'm a zillenial (I'm 25). I tend to interact with people 20-25 more than 25-30. And I use more social media than I should. Also play CSGO a lot, which is mostly under '20s.

If you want to keep up with the kids, just scroll TikTok a bit and read through the comment sections, you will pick up their slang pretty fast. Localized slang isn't much of a thing anymore. It's all universal TikTok slang. Even kids in remote parts of the world are using TikTok slang.

Luckily I've managed to resist TikTok, Twitter and Instagram so far. It's not worth it to me to delve in just to keep up with slang I guess. Alas.

Yeah, it's not worth it at all. It's really amazing how vapid most of the content is. Atleast with TV shows you consume some "culture" or learn a thing or two here and there, similarly with Youtube but to a lesser extent. Short-form videos are just pure stupidity all around.

And the algorithm doesn't help with that either.

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So basically Catholics versus Protestants and the other sides views are so evil and wrong we need to kill each other.

When the war starting?

Personally I think liberalism has proven stupider and the data like rising mental health issues, obesity, drug abuse, suicides, etc strongly support a belief that human utility is improved in traditional societies. I’m down for killing the pronoun brigades.

And I don’t think modern liberals are liberal. I think their Christian’s disagreeing on who gets to play Christ

https://twitter.com/antoniogm/status/1606723411287605248?s=46&t=5nMr6txFQK8ZMReHs4j1zA

(Link by part affiliation on whose most oppressed today and hence societies redeemer by hanging on the cross)

We’ve already played this game. We had trads and prots and came to America to start a new country that agreed we wouldn’t kill each other over Christ. Now once again we have trads and prots (who don’t realize their prots) deciding we need to kill each other again.

Please use the correct form of they’re my friend.

I agree with your point that modern liberals don’t support liberty in the truest sense. They got so much liberty they didn’t know what to do with it.

It’s unlikely that illiberality is genetic, because its modern instantiation is new (1960s onward), the ancestors of the liberals were all at one point monarchists, and it’s correlated to where you are born.

If you believe that aggression and selfishness are partially influenced by genetics, as I do, there are more humane ways to guide the breeding of humans. In Europe’s past, they executed criminals for murder and theft over a certain amount, and the “social reinforcement propaganda” led to kind/sharing people having many children. Any breeding program would have to solve the border crisis though, or develop insular endogamy practices.

You are muddying up the waters by using labels that have loose meanings. 'Liberal' or 'Monarchist' is a placeholder. Relying on a culture relative historical definition of monarchism to pontificate on what a 'monarchist' person was like in the past is nonsensical. Our historical definitions have no relevance to what people were actually like. They tell us nothing about what stimuli it was that made someone, in whatever sense you want to interpret it, a 'monarchist'.

Every single psychological trait is heritable. You are an expression of your genetic material in an environment. There is no partial cause. It's 100% total. Your response to stimuli is not accidental. I'm sure that, through some extreme environmental control, you could pacify someone by controlling their stimuli, but in a modern society, with the stimuli as they are, the people are as they are. If your reaction to the stimuli of modern society is anything other than acceptance you have in you some form of maladaptation to modern society that is incompatible with it.

This incompatibility is an existential threat to modern society as it creates bothersome things like the paradox of tolerance. If modern society wants to survive then people who are not compatible need to disappear from the face of the earth. It has no mechanism for that type of existence.

Why omit the possibility that the environment might change? It certainly does faster than genetics.

I don't understand what you mean.

I always disliked that essay. Society is not fixed, there are such things as revolutions and social changes. Where was 'society is fixed' when the US was introducing civil rights, abolishing slavery, mainstreaming homosexuals?

Drugs can be stamped out if you put in a lot of energy. China no longer has an opium problem, for example. If you send all the addicts to labor camps and shoot the drug dealers, the drug problem disappears. It's really not that hard to find a drug dealer and shoot them - if drug-addled losers and criminal gangs can manage it, so can billion-dollar armed bureaucracies if they deign to try.

For schools, we could simply reintroduce discipline and academic rigor.

Japan doesn't have an obesity problem. Why not copy their diet? Out with Coca Cola and McDonalds, in with sushi. Less corn and more fish.

The whole essay is like saying 'I can't get into this car, I've used 15 little plastic screwdrivers and can't see any way to unscrew the doors - I'll go find the owner and persuade them to let me in'. Well maybe you need a hammer to break the windows, maybe you need a rock, maybe you need a specialized pick for the lock, maybe you need a shaped charge...

Just because ineffective methods don't work, it does not follow that no methods work and you have to go around the inherent meaning of the task.

There's a reason petty criminals are not considered the same as sovereigns waging war, and it is perfectly compatible with this conception if you recognize the difference.

Sovereigns are already engaged in mortal combat against each other in which there are no rules, they live in anarchy. Whereas petty criminals deliberately chose to break the existing rules of society and leave its compact even though it's not even in their own long term interest. Nobles didn't kill and rob because they are high time preference (for the most part), and that's the behavior that's supposed to be selected against here.

If there's anything to complain about it's that those that do not rule in such an arrangement are bred to be meek but in pretty much all moral conceptions of civilized peoples across history, this is seen as a moral good. Because it's stable.

I agree. Outwardly signaled Political Illiberality being genetic in any reliable, context free way strikes me as absurd because it would require that George Washington and Harry Washington had completely different underlying genetic motivations, though both perceived themselves as fighting for their own freedom.

Are the left-leaning posters all riled up because it's Christmas and everything is plastered in Christian iconography or something? Or are you just a troll?

The reason they should be killed is to prevent them from harming more people, and to make sure that the bad genes that they hold that make them predisposed to bad behavior are not propagated into the next generation. Likewise, some people are born with an evil sense of morality that makes them predisposed to being fascists and reactionaries (yes, trad morality is illiberal and thus evil, it is a result of moloch) including religious ones (which is basically fascism except even worse because they scare people with made up notions about the afterlife, hence the term 'christofascist'), and other forms of anti liberal people.

So in the last 60 years has the decline in 'christofascists' been due to brave warriors like you exterminating them from the gene pool? I mean...those people are passing on their 'bad' genes at least as, if not more, frequently than secular folks. It's almost like...there's a strong environmental component!

Not to mention the hilarious lack of self-awareness behind 'My opponent's ideology is so toxic we must kill them before they can tell anyone about it or reproduce.' If anything, people like you who (if you aren't a troll of course) soberly cheer for conflict theory and ethnic cleansing are the true dangers to society.

Zunger said it better, and like six years ago. Policy starvation's a bitch, ain't it?

What's policy starvation?

One of the observable mechanisms of social decay.

Long ago, I promised to write an effort post about this, but then I kinda lost the ability to write effort-posts. Here's the short version:

People want a thing. People clamor for the thing they want. Lots of different would-be leaders step forward offering to help organize the getting of the thing. These would-be leaders each have a different plan for how they'll get the thing. The plans tend to differ a lot their projections of how much effort and extremity will be required to get the thing.

As a rule, people don't want effort or extremity, so they tend to go with the plans that promise the easiest solutions first. When those don't work, they grudgingly accept the plans involving a little more pain and effort, and so on. Ideally, they reach a plan that gets them at least an approximation of what they want without too much pain and hardship. The people get what they want, the successful leaders are lauded for their excellent work, and everyone goes home happy.

But suppose people decide they want something that can't actually be gotten? The process above is carried out, starting with the easy plans, then the moderate plans, then the serious, hard-nosed plans. One by one, these plans are attempted, fail, and are discarded, but the people are still unsatisfied. Failed plans might be tweaked, but after a number of attempts grow discredited, and people stop backing them. If the thing people want isn't achievable by the means available, and people won't stop wanting it, you get policy starvation: people gravitate to to solutions and the leaders proposing them that under better circumstances would never be given the time of day, but now amass credibility as the only people offering solutions that haven't already obviously failed, if only because they haven't been tried yet. In the same way that physical starvation drives people to the extremity of eating spoiled food, and ultimately grass, shoe-leather or human flesh in an attempt to satiate their physical need for sustenance, starvation of policy drives people to extreme political acts: insurrection, revolution, civil war, democide.

Look around you, and you'll see it everywhere, on both sides. In this case, troll or no, Liberalism's promise was that once we adopted its norms, everyone would just sorta chill out, everything would work out, reason would carry the day, mumble mumble you get the Federation from Star Trek. It hasn't worked out like that. His generation did not, in fact, get it right, and they were, in fact, making promises, promises they were powerless to fulfill. And so they gifted us a world where people have lost confidence in the moderate Skokie solutions, and turn to Zunger's extremist zealotry instead.

What did liberalism promise that it hasn’t fulfilled though? You say people haven’t chilled out but then again we haven’t had a major war or civil unrest for decades.

Also we have done a decently good job of living together in a diverse society. It’s not perfect, but I doubt it ever was. Dissidents were just silenced in the past or didn’t make it into the history books. Now we’re letting that frustration out, which is on balance a good thing if we can figure out how to address it.

we haven’t had a major war or civil unrest for decades

Who exactly is "we"? There's a shooting war almost a year old in the middle of Europe. There's several billions of damage from riots just recently, and some cities are more dangerous than war zones. Kids are graduated from schools being illiterate and unable to do basic math. War on poverty is going so well people are living on the streets permanently in virtually every major city and seeing people shitting on sidewalks became a routine occurrence. Oh yes, and we also are doing so great that record numbers of people kill themselves with hard drugs in prime of their life. I'm not sure it's as spectacular record as we'd like it to be.

What did liberalism promise that it hasn’t fulfilled though?

The part that's being used to drive current policies is "equal outcomes for women and minorities". (It doesn't matter if liberalism didn't actually promise that, many people who believed in liberalism believed it did)

Don't mistake eloquence and verbosity for truth and just roll over and abandon your point because people posted 15 links to their extensive post histories from the last three years. There's a steelman to be had for things aren't as bad as the terminally online make them out to be, that liberalism has been remarkably successful and is worth fighting for, and that this is still the best time and place to be alive bar none.

It's easy to paint a grim picture of liberalism and the West when it's failures are trumpeted to the heavens while it's successes are the water we swim in.

Good point! I suppose I don’t see it as rolling over because my views genuinely have changed on this point recently. I agree though that the amount of doomsaying on this forum is unwarranted!

It's easy to paint a grim picture of liberalism and the West when it's failures are trumpeted to the heavens while it's successes are the water we swim in.

You have a very warped view of what "trumpeted from the heavens" means if you believe this.

Last night, I turned on NPR in the car and listened to some guy expound about how the last 20 years of Ukrainian history are entirely the West's fault as we supported neo-nazis and genocide in the Donbas. Depending on the political party in power, half the country and media ecosystem is in hysterics about FEMA death camps/alt-right neonazis/excessive taxation/insufficient taxation/so on and so forth.

This morning, I open up globaltimes.cn and read about how Actually, China's COVID response has been entirely rational, orderly and planned this way from the beginning by our hyper-competent, divinely ordained leadership.

Criticism is good, criticism and awareness of our failures is important to (try and) hold politicians accountable and identify problems to be solved. We've blown way past that to screaming from the rooftops and rending our clothes about Trump lowering the corporate tax rate/Obamacare/children in cages/whatever outrage you want to pick that we promptly forgot as the news cycle churned over. Nobody bothers to defend the West anymore; it's imperialistic, misogynistic, anti-white, anti-black, antipathic to the middle and lower classes, exploitative of labor, sclerotic, bureaucratic, autocratic, whatever you want it to be man. Someone's gotta pick up the standard - we may not be improving lives as much as we were a half-century ago, but as far as I can tell, nobody else is doing better and this is still the system to emulate for innovation and human progress.

To your other post:

Sure! As long you're upholding their principles, rather than deconstructing them in hopes of delivering something even better. But it seems we're way past that point.

Someday, I'm sure humanity will come up with something better. I'm not going to buy into the hubris of the End of History and claim that we've solved the problem guys, it's liberal democracies all the way down and all we need to care about is execution. But like I said, I don't see anything better in the marketplace of ideas at the moment.

I may have phrased my posts poorly, because funnily enough I think the first part of your comment addresses my second post better than the latter.

On messages being shouted from the rooftops:

We've blown way past that to screaming from the rooftops and rending our clothes about Trump lowering the corporate tax rate/Obamacare/children in cages/whatever outrage you want to pick that we promptly forgot as the news cycle churned over.

I disagree. You'll know a message is shouted from the rooftops when you can get in trouble for disagreeing with it. If you get fired, blacklisted in an industry, debanked, or arrested, or if alphabet agencies have taskforces dedicated to scrubbing or throttling your disagreement from the internet. If you are looking at spending tens of thousands of dollars a year to put your daughter into a private religious school for a religion you don't believe in, in the hopes of turning down the volume of the message, it's probably being shouted from the rooftops. But the things you pointed at are just background noise.

On upholding liberal principles:

Someday, I'm sure humanity will come up with something better.

Yes, yes, I'm sure of that too, but that's not what I meant. The point is that when we do come up with something new, it will be, well, new. Something different from the current liberal system. It will fly or fall on it's own, and thus have no claim to the successes of liberalism, even if it does turn out to surpass it. Likewise people who are arguing for violating liberal principles now in order improve society, even as they call themselves liberals from the other side of their mouth, shouldn't get to claim the successes of liberalism. To be clear, I don't think you're doing it, though I may have been poking you to find out if you will.

By the way, has your worldview changed somewhat recently? I might be misremembering your comments from the old place, but I've been doing some double takes reading you lately. I seem to be getting the vibe of just a bit more sympathy for the dissidents? Not that you agree with us, just that we're not insane for complaining.

Last night, I turned on NPR in the car and listened to some guy expound about how the last 20 years of Ukrainian history are entirely the West's fault as we supported neo-nazis and genocide in the Donbas.


This morning, I open up globaltimes.cn and read about how Actually, China's COVID response has been entirely rational, orderly and planned this way from the beginning by our hyper-competent, divinely ordained leadership.

That's a classic. "We're not perfect, but over here you're free to criticize the government" has been the staple of American propaganda since at least the end of WWII. I'll grant you that we're a little bit more subtle about it than authoritarian states, but as the past few years are showing, it's not that our rulers are allowing criticism as a matter of principle, they're not even allowing it pragmatically on the off chance that us plebs might have a good point every once in a while, and it would be unwise to shut us up. It's a calculated play, it's better to let crazy doomsday preachers rant on street corners, and have people completely ignore them as they walk by on their way to work, than to make a show of silencing them. Of course the moment the crazy preacher gains a following and so much as influences an election in an unsanctioned direction, the knives come out, and the show is over.

we may not be improving lives as much as we were a half-century ago, but as far as I can tell, nobody else is doing better

That's another classic. The issue here is that when you start on top, and have a long way to fall, you might be able to use "nobody else is doing better" as an excuse for a very long time, even as things are getting obviously worse. Hell, if the whole world is becoming more authoritarian, you might be able to claim you're "liberal" even after installing a dictator, simply because the other dictators are worse.

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Don't mistake eloquence and verbosity for truth and just roll over and abandon your point because people posted 15 links to their extensive post histories from the last three years.

This is extremely good advice, and I entirely endorse it.

On the other hand, would you agree that Liberalism has in fact made promises? If so, what specific promises do you recognize being made, and how do you think they've turned out? Is education a reasonable area to start with?

On the other hand, would you agree that Liberalism has in fact made promises?

Sure, although it's probably changed some over the centuries and depending who you ask.

If so, what specific promises do you recognize being made, and how do you think they've turned out? Is education a reasonable area to start with?

If you let me take credit for everything since the enlightenment and French/American revolutions, it seems like an easy answer; look at literacy rates, STEM knowledge in the populace (what fraction of 19th century mill workers could tell you the Pythagorean theorem or that the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell, I wonder?), and, at the risk of Goodharting myself, High school/college/doctoral diplomas. If you're slightly more stringent, you could control for general 'progress' by comparing these metrics with 'illiberal' countries, and I expect we'd outperform them over the last several hundred years. If you insist on controlling for disparities in wealth, well, aren't you conceding to some degree that liberalism has some comparative advantage?

At the risk of sounding high-school-essay-level trite, liberalism promises self-determination; the right to choose one's spouse, one's religion, one's vocation. It promises political self-determination, free speech, so on and so forth.

Much of the criticism put forth below is less about the ideals and goals of liberalism, and rather instances of failed execution. Freedom of X is important, but people didn't really believe in it. You could be handed stone tablets laying out God's flawless ideology for humanity, and if Jimbo down the street decides to covet his neighbor's wife, we're still out of luck. If you'd argue that theory is all well and good but we're consequentialists damnit, much like Winston Churchill on democracy, it still seems like western liberal democracies are getting better results.

If you let me take credit for everything since the enlightenment and French/American revolutions

Sure! As long you're upholding their principles, rather than deconstructing them in hopes of delivering something even better. But it seems we're way past that point.

I think this is probably about the best steel-man one could reasonably expect.

Are liberalism/the Enlightenment the same thing, in your view? Connected things? Entirely separate things?

Is the US a liberal democracy? Was it one prior to the civil rights act? Prior to suffrage? Prior to the abolition of slavery? If we reversed some or all of these policies tomorrow, would we still be a "liberal democracy"? Is "liberal democracy" applied based on objective criteria, or do we judge a nation relative to its contemporaries?

More to the point, do we label based on the ideological approach to policy, or do we judge based on the policies chosen and their outcomes?

I'm certainly willing to let you take credit for everything since the enlightenment and French/American revolutions, but shouldn't that credit be for the bad things that sprang from the ideology, not merely the good? And shouldn't we be rigorous in questioning whether any thing, good or bad, is actually attributable to the ideology, not merely coincident? Take Literacy, for example.

In early U.S. colonial history, teaching children to read was the responsibility of the parents for the purpose of reading the Bible. The Massachusetts law of 1642 and the Connecticut law of 1650 required that not only children but also servants and apprentices were required to learn to read.

...And of course that was only the continuation of previous policies among protestants, going back to the Reformation itself, if I'm not mistaken. Is Christianity part of the Enlightenment/Liberal Vangaurd? Does its centuries-old drive for universal literacy, valuing of education, philosophy and science get some credit for the water we swim in as well?

At the risk of sounding high-school-essay-level trite, liberalism promises self-determination; the right to choose one's spouse, one's religion, one's vocation. It promises political self-determination, free speech, so on and so forth.

The Soviets promised most of the things on that list, claimed to be motivated by Enlightenment principles while doing it, and insisted strenuously that they were delivering. Of course, we know they were "illiberal" thanks to hindsight, despite the fact that most of their unimpeachably liberal contemporaries completely failed to recognize that fact for a generation or two. Do you see the problem?

...I fear this is not cohering into a legible argument, only a series of disconnected gripes.

I think the term "liberal", by itself, doesn't actually mean much. I think the way people typically use it is as a synonym for Enlightenment ideology. The problem with this is that Enlightenment ideology has repeatedly resulted in wildly illiberal outcomes, and the most successful "liberal" societies have not actually hued very closely to Enlightenment ideology in a number of very important ways, among them a deep and abiding connection to the Christian faith. I note that societies that lacked or removed this connection in favor of pure Enlightenment ideology did very, very badly indeed, and I note that as Christian faith has passed the tipping point into serious decline, even anglosphere countries have found themselves in a protracted crisis of rising illiberalism.

I think the general argument you're sketching the outlines of papers over these realities in ways that are easy to miss if one simply goes with the cultural zeitgeist. Enlightenment ideology takes credit for outcomes it did not solely or sometimes even mainly create, and it ditches all responsibility for harms it very clearly causes. The Enlightenment is certainly one of the sources American Culture has drawn from, but it has drawn even more heavily from others; when it comes time to tally benefits and harms, all the benefits are tallied to the Enlightenment, whether it caused them or not, and all the harms are tallied to the others, whether they were responsible for them or not. Then too, one can simply ignore or define away harms in the present, and likewise for benefits in the past; history is just writing, after all, and statistics are famously malleable.

I think the above is how the liberal triumphalism you're describing is generated, and I think it's a fair start at describing why it is doomed to collapse.

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What did liberalism promise that it hasn’t fulfilled though?

Briefly? The same utopian outcome all reformers expect will happen: clear away the dead wood, take the heavy hand of the past and outmoded traditions from round the throat of present-day humanity, allow liberty to flourish and expand, and believe that humans are naturally good and it is only the existence of laws that make them criminals. Take away impediments, and we will all naturally be good, just, law-abiding, productive citizens who spend our spare time in being creative and doing works of charity.

Does that sound like modern-day humanity to you, in the mass? Many people are indeed nicer, more charitable, etc. But many more people have taken the liberties and now demand their 'rights' without feeling any corresponding sense of citizenship, duty or responsibility. I think some of the more stringent online types describe this, uncharitably, as gibs. I do think that is tarring everyone with the same brush, but on the other hand I have seen it for myself in a previous job where people looking for social benefits did parrot off a line about being denied what they felt they were entitled to as down to 'racism' (just to clarify, all parties here - the clients and the clerks administering the government schemes - were white). These young persons had clearly been taught this line of baloney in school about how if they didn't get all they wanted, well, racism sexism homophobia discrimination (fill out the rest of the bingo card yourself). That they should play their part in society as citizens and participate for the common good of all? What kind of crazy, bigoted, conservative, right-wing idea is that? Classic Liberalism, but now it's deemed wrongthink.

What did liberalism promise that it hasn’t fulfilled though?

Freedom of thought, religion, speech, and association? Equality between races and sexes, and lowering of class differences?

Also we have done a decently good job of living together in a diverse society. It’s not perfect, but I doubt it ever was.

Yes, and it only requires a level of surveillance and propaganda, that was the subject of tinfoil-hat conspiracy theories a mere two decades ago.

Now we’re letting that frustration out

No. The levels of social , economic, and political pressure preventing letting frustrations out has gone up exponentially even within the last decade. You are trying to use the fact that it's not completely stamped out to claim that it's allowed beyond what it used to be.

Other people have offered replies, and @gattsuru in particular brings the receipts as usual, but I wonder if this is something one really needs to see for themselves to appreciate. If you want to see it, you need to go back and really look at the things people were saying decades ago, the pictures they were painting about what the future world was supposed to look like, the promises they were selling to people about the concrete things their ideological proposals would achieve.

You also, probably, need to understand that your own experience doesn't generalize. I'd imagine just on general demographics that you're probably doing pretty okay, and so is most of your social circle. You have far less reason to notice or care that, say, every political speech on education in the last fifty years has effectively been the same speech on repeat, explaining how the things that never ever change are totally going to change this time. For you, I'd imagine, that lack of change isn't too bad. Other people's experience is different.

For a longer if not terribly adequate treatment of the issues, try this multipart comment, especially starting in the last paragraph of the first part. The problem your argument faces is that it doesn't convince the people it needs to convince, because it doesn't actually address their concerns. Hence BLM, hence Trump.

You are correct that dissidents have always been silenced. What you're missing is that a lot of our current society was built on the promise that there was a better way, that silencing dissidents wasn't necessary. That promise is now load-bearing, with the increasingly tenuous peace we enjoy depending on its maintenance: it allowed a great increase in the values-diversity of our society, to the point where it's no longer possible to get a workable agreement on who the dissidents are and how to suppress them. Consequently, censorship no longer functions to maintain social cohesion, but further erodes it.

Yeah, this comment was pretty out of touch, not gonna lie.

I dunno, it's the sort of reply I get pretty frequently on this point, actually. The social consensus slides freely between "change is long overdue, no more waiting, it's time to force the issue" when it's a change the consensus favors, and "what's the problem, everything's fine" when a change opposed to that consensus is proposed. Once you see this tendency once, you see it everywhere. it's completely endemic.

In my defense I was pretty drunk when I made this comment. As much as that's a defense.

I've personally shifted in the last couple of years from the 'everything is fine' camp to the 'change' camp, so perhaps it's just vestigial thought patterns rearing their head.

I will say that I was curious to see what the promises people came up with were, but probably shouldn't have defended liberalism so hard.

Rather famously, we spent and continue to spend a ton of money on the liberal promise of education for everyone, and it turns out that they can't do that; FCFromSSC had a pretty entertaining post on CultureWarRoundup about it when DeBoer finally admitted to the writing on the wall, though given he got modhatted for linking it contemporaneously I'm a little hesitant to link it now.

More broadly, though, there was a short time where people said "live and let live", and even if you couldn't exactly believe they meant it, they at least were willing to put more than a little lip service to the concept. And then theory encountered practice, and it was easier to believe in Santa Claus.

Firing people for their bad speech or associations was so beyond the pale that we built entire structures and train every teenager with stories of how important it is to resist, until it turns out that this was a useful power to have, and then an entire administrative infrastructure was developed to provide corporate liability should sufficiently large businesses not do it fast enough. We've found that protest is the voice of the unheard, until the wrong unheard do it, and then when countries declare martial law and confiscate bank account there's just a bit of a shrug. We've found that political abuses of law enforcement powers were so unacceptable to earn consent decree after consent decree, until it could happen to someone who 'deserved' it. We've found that government pressures to restrict free speech were awful, until they happened in ways people liked and then became a nothingburger. Freedom of religious belief was absolutely vital for two decades, then turned into lacite, and then every so often even the mention of those beliefs becomes its own violation.

And this goes on for even the small stuff, in a thousand different ways, on a thousand different topics. Anything that could be remotely read as celebrating violence was so unacceptable as to result in new reddit rules... and people who should have noticed patterns just keep missing these certain occassions. Taking kids from their own flesh and blood was to be a last-resort, even under violations of some criminal law, the sort of atrocity that left people walked in dazed horror, and also perfectly acceptable as an administratively-designed ad-hoc threat against someone using their constitutional rights. There's been a few places like EFF that at least drop a mention to their principles against their politics every few years, but the fall of the ACLU and other core institutions has been legendary; where they could once at least use a fig leaf and pretend they merely ignored rights that they didn't like because other groups focused on them, they now highlight individual people they don't like.

You're right that dissidents were silenced in the past, but the liberal movement was built, in no small part, about protecting the rights of those dissidents to speak more publicly! And then it turned out, no matter how much we avowed generalized principles that would protect everyone, the people actually making decisions and a worrying number of hangers-on either (charitably) designed their reference classes in such specific ways as to carefully exclude everyone not on their side or (less charitably) just wanted their dissidents freed.

This may not be especially severe by some historic standards -- and I agree we're pretty far from the KKK-era South, at least -- but if you wanted to do a hard comparison to the McCarthy era it's at least within an order of magnitude, and the McCarthy era is far from what the liberal movement considered a best alternative to negotiated agreement.

Rather famously, we spent and continue to spend a ton of money on the liberal promise of education for everyone, and it turns out that they can't do that; FCFromSSC had a pretty entertaining post on CultureWarRoundup about it when DeBoer finally admitted to the writing on the wall, though given he got modhatted for linking it contemporaneously I'm a little hesitant to link it now.

I'm not. @FCfromSSC's comment was amazing and deserves to be spread. Context.

FCFromSSC had a pretty entertaining post on CultureWarRoundup about it when DeBoer finally admitted to the writing on the wall

Though I disagree with Freddie on a ton of stuff, I do respect him for things like this: he sees and has seen the reality on the ground, and pushes back against the idea that all that is needed for every kid to go to Harvard is moar money. He acknowledges that - gasp! cover your ears from the horrid notion! - there is indeed a range of intellect and intelligence, and not every kid is as bright as the others. That you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

This does not mean ignoring the less academically able kids, but it does mean facing up to the truth: some kids are never going to go to any sort of college at all. That is a truth that can't be accepted, however, because we've constructed society (or are being swept along by the whirlwind of technological progress) where in order to get any kind of decent life you need that degree. Permanent, pensionable jobs have pretty much gone by the wayside as what you expect to do: get a good job, stay with one company for most of your career, retire from there. The world of work is much more fragile, transient, and vulnerable to shocks and upheaval now, and you have to be constantly re-inventing yourself, upskilling, keeping on top of new tech, jumping from company to company to get promotions, and so on. Even the white collar world is not immune to this, and unless you have a good education in the desirable skills that will land you a decent job where you can be fairly sure you can sell your skills for good salaries and have a career, then you are looking at the uncertain world of the gig economy, the temporary contract, the freelancer, and now the threat of being replaced by AI.

So to get on the career ladder, you need a college degree (let's put aside all the Caplan stuff about signalling for the moment). In order to do that, there is the idealistic notion of "everyone can go to college" and the practical realisation that if you admit that not all can or should go, and that merely having a degree is no longer in itself the guarantee of upward mobility and security that once it was, then you are saying "a lot of kids are going to be, for all intents and purposes, on the scrapheap once they are adults, unwanted by society since they can't contribute anything useful to the new knowledge economy".

That last is political suicide and also possibly setting the scene for widespread social upheaval and unrest. So you put pressure on the schools and the education system to pass everybody, to put them all on the college (any kind of college) track and you ignore or bury any evidence to the contrary that yeah, you do need streaming in schools because not everyone is equally able for the subjects and yeah, not everyone is fit for college so how about we tailor their education to what they can do?

That blue-collar work (unless you're a tradesman, and even that is hard work and no guarantee that everyone is going to be an independent small businessman) is diminishing, that we've outsourced it overseas for cheaper labour, and that there aren't the traditional manufacturing industries to soak up labour around anymore means that a lot of people in the lower half of the population are facing a future that is grim; possibly go into service work, which is low-paid, low-status, and biased towards shift work and cutting down hours so that employees don't hit the limits at which legal entitlements kick in. For a section of the upper half of the population, in certain white collar jobs, that future is already there (journalism) or looming with the threat/promise of AI.

Freddie sees this because he's been at the coalface. But there are a lot of people in power in the existing system for whom it is imperative that they turn a blind eye to all that, hence "all kids are equally smart and capable, it's down to grit and growth mindset, and if that doesn't work then it's the fault of systemic racism, and all must have prizes".

Thanks for the explanation!

What does "Skokie" mean, though?

Presumably it’s a reference to the KKK’s demonstration in Skokie, IL in the 1970s. The ACLU defended the KKK’s right to peacefully march.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Socialist_Party_of_America_v._Village_of_Skokie

A famous court case from the 1970s - neo-Nazis wanted to march through a Jewish neighbourhood, and the ACLU controversially defended the neo-Nazis, on free speech grounds. It's one of the most famous examples of publicly fighting for a "I may disagree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it" position.

This incident, one of the iconic incidents on which 90s liberalism was founded. Shorthand for the dominant social consensus in favor of expansive freedom of expression, which used the case as a common-knowledge touchstone.

Your satire needs work.

This post is not really that funny, and it's not really fooling anyone either.

Can we have a rule where people who post long walls of texts like this get banned/warned? Paragraphing is an important skill.

Also, people need to go and spend some time on less classy internet forums so they learn how to avoid getting baited like this. There's a ridiculous number of comments for a post that explicitly calls for this very forum to be banned.

I see wokism as a first step into this plan, if you think wokism is trying to brainwash you, your right, and its a good thing that they are, because the alternative is being brainwashed by default oppression. This is why I support woke nonsense, as a pragmatic measure.

I understand that this is a low effort troll but this line of reasoning is so feable. If it's nonsense and you are creating systems founded on it then it's going to fall apart or turn on you. If you think this is some kind of clever turning our beliefs back in on themselves you are not as smart as you think you are because this whole thing is painfully incoherent.

Why stop there? The only way to be sure is to kill everyone. Can't have war and suffering if nobody is alive to experience those! Maximise those paperclips!

Thomas Aquinas said that the saints in heaven will rejoice over the suffering of the damned in hell, this is the telos of their existence.

I have a feeling you misunderstand the meaning there. The contemplation of the perfect justice of God is what is part of the joy of the blessed, not the suffering in itself. To quote from Canto IX of the "Paradiso":

'Yet here we don't repent, but smile instead,

not at our fault, which comes not back to mind,

but for that Power which ordered and foresaw.

		 

'Here we contemplate the craft that beautifies

such love, and here discern the good

with which the world above informs the one below.

You can just say you believe in exterminationist revolutionary terror against your class enemies and enemy ethnicities...

You don't have to pretend this somehow has something to do with the ideology of John Stuart Mill.

You can just say "Indifferent universe I've seen what you've done for Mao and the Khmer Rouge, and I want that for America."

.

Like what parts of liberalism do you even think you believe in? Clearly not freedom of concience, association, speech, contract, travel... nor the right to life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness.

Wow, few things:

  1. Paragraphs help most writing by breaking it up into readable chunks. I'm not saying this will help here, but it does seem like the most easily addressable aspect of this ... thing?

  2. I'm not sure why you think you are liberal. Do you just like the way the word sounds? I can't figure it out. You are at most a "progressive" but I don't want to insult all progressives by lumping them in with you. I think you fit in best with communists / maoists / stalinists / etc. They share your belief in "everything will be great once I kill all the people on the right that disagree with me".

  3. Its always possible that you are a troll, and that is what some people will think here. I've become a big believer in a variant of Poe's law: doesn't matter how crazy it sounds there is someone out there that believes it. I'll treat the views you espouse seriously, even if the actual person writing them doesn't see them as serious.

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Most of the arguments I’ve read against transhumanism seem to boil down to some variant of:

I find that distasteful on a gut level.

I don’t find this convincing? If your best argument is “I don’t like it,” you may want to reassess your position.

I don’t find this convincing?

Was he trying to convince you, or just describe his reactions?

If your best argument is “I don’t like it,” you may want to reassess your position.

Quite the opposite, always beware anyone that tells you to ignore your gut.

Feeling your way around an issue beats reason and knowledge any day. The illiberal trads and woke can agree on that.

Not just wokes and trads, everyone. Never met a centrist that was guided by reason over emotion.

I'm sympathetic to the idea that my gut instincts have evolved over millions of years of pressure, and wouldn't have done so for no reason. When I'm disgusted by the smell of shit, it's because it's unclean and I'm being warned to stay away. When I get an "off" feeling about someone, it's some long-buried threat detection instinct briefly flaring to life again.

I'm sympathetic to the idea that my gut instincts have evolved over millions of years of pressure, and wouldn't have done so for no reason.

Check what were instinctive "gut reactions" of "the people" to wearing glasses, autopsy of the dead, vaccination, anesthesia, open body surgery, blood transfusion, organ transplants and other medical treatments we now take for granted when they were first introduced.

ANCESTOR: Grandson? Are you mad? You let a Jew to poison you till you are unconscious, cut you open with knife, and then suck blood from someone else and pump it into your body? And you even pay the Christkiller for this satanic black magic? Are you even good Christian?

Pointing out the lack of limiting principles is always fun, and the best part about it is that it can be done both ways.

DESCENDANT: Happy birthday Grandpa! Go ahead open it! It's a gift card for the local CRISPR clinic, they have a new treatment for making penises grow out of your forehead, the first 5 are free! What do you mean you don't want it? Why do you always have to stand in the way of progress, grandpa?

Comparing my gut reaction to getting a dick on my forehead somewhere in old age to my gut reaction of succumbing to dementia and osteoporosis in old age... I'll take the dicks, thanks.

Sure. If there weren't obvious temptations to transhumanism, I wouldn't find it half as dangerous as I do.

That said, are you going to stop at dicks, gramps?

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Check what were instinctive "gut reactions" of "the people" to wearing glasses, autopsy of the dead, vaccination, anesthesia, open body surgery, blood transfusion, organ transplants and other medical treatments we now take for granted when they were first introduced.

"They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown."

You're using cherry-picked examples. I'm sure you can think of plenty of other things that people's gut reactions told them to laugh at and which turned out to be laughable.

And even your cherrypicked list includes things that didn't work well when they were introduced (operations before sterile conditions were understood, blood transfusions before blood types were known.) And I know of no evidence that glasses were ever rejected using gut feelings.

If your best argument is “I don’t like it,” you may want to reassess your position.

"I don't like it" is the only argument ever uttered against any political position by the nature of political positions.

Any political statement is ultimately a moral statement about what ought to transpire which is ultimately an aesthetic statement about what good circumstances and good lives look like.

All of the arguments that could possibly exist for trans-humanism boil down to "I like it" and vice versa.

Wars have been fought over lesser sentiments than disgust.

All of the arguments that could possibly exist for trans-humanism boil down to "I like it" and vice versa.

Ah, but you forget the «otherwise you're getting made obsolete and reduced to praying for generosity of your superhuman overlords» argument, which is a pragmatic appeal to values of self-determination and self-preservation the other party plausibly (and in most cases, including this one, obviously) shares.

Transhumanism proper isn't about fetishistic bullshit like embedding chips into the skin, nor is it analogous to casual sex. It's not merely a moral hazard to conservatives, and doesn't really allow for smug prudish attitude.

It doesn't really matter that little people find transhumanism icky, except for those unfortunate enough to depend on their goodwill. The class that holds power will be augmented, by more or less icky technical means. One can argue it already has been.

The idea that normative beliefs are ultimately founded on aesthetic instincts is a strangely exuberant and infantile one to be proposed by a conservative. Maybe that's a stage preceding acknowledgement that your worldview has been deboonked in your own mind and only hinges on obstinacy. Generally, people think their oughts are derived from what is, and I'd charitably assume they are informed at least by what these people believe is factual truth.

a pragmatic appeal to values of self-determination and self-preservation the other party plausibly

Ah yes, "Gott mit uns".

If we grant the transitive argument, this still rests upon the axiom that living the life that is being proposed is better than death, which, again, relies on an aesthetic framework which is non obvious. And I think it's obviously anathema to my own. "Live free or die" and so forth.

Consider the supposed irrelevance of John the Savage v. The World Controllers. Now which is the good man?

Transhumanism proper isn't about fetishistic bullshit

I hear you, it is about something much more sacrilegious, which is transcending the human condition to become something else. It's about bringing heaven on earth and other such utopianism. You will find nothing more opposed to the goals of conservatism and traditionalism, which hold our nature to be immutable and that one should refrain from immanentizing the eschaton.

The idea that normative beliefs are ultimately founded on aesthetic instincts is a strangely exuberant and infantile one to be proposed by a conservative.

I'd refrain from calling Aristostle a child if I were you.

Now how exactly do you propose to "deboonk" unfalsifiable metaphysics? I mean seriously, when someone claims to have solved the problem that has stumped all occidental philosophers since the modern period you'd think they would bring some receipts.

What's it going to be this time, logical positivism?

Generally, people think their oughts are derived from what is, and I'd charitably assume they are informed at least by what these people believe is factual truth.

That people delude themselves into thinking that their moral tastes are dictated by reality does not make them right about such things. For surely if they were right, they would all agree or be able to debate themselves to agreement. And yet that is not the case. Even among especially reasonable people.

The existence of the is-ought gap should be enough to convince anyone of the vacuity of this idea, but we now have studied moral impulses enough that we can model how people react to dilemmas. And it has basically nothing to do with reason, facts or truth.

People do not reason themselves into morality, they create rationalizations for their preexisting moral jugements.

This still rests upon the axiom that living the life that is being proposed is better than death, which, again, relies on an aesthetic framework which is non obvious.

Hey, I totally dig the aesthetic of suicidal resistance.

But the point is, there's a great deal of difference between mere dislike and maximally committed antagonism. For most people, their life (and related issues, such as avoidance of suffering, enslavement and mental decline, which I'll omit for simplicity) ranks very highly in the hierarchy of values, so when facing the choice between certainly losing their life and embracing some disliked proposition, they don't hesitate long (this is why mugging works). Indeed, they may fold even over minor discomfort, seeing as they routinely hand over chunks of their autonomy and privacy and ability to shape future to save a bit of time or mental energy, to get a nugget of entertainment or stick it to the outgroup.

Thus for them this is a pragmatic, not aesthetic argument: a factual claim about ways towards realizing their own genuine desires; their aesthetics are compatible with transhumanism by default.

And many arguments are pragmatic in this sense. Outside the context of soapboxing, people rarely deal in absolutes, and live lives full of contingent compromises. On this topic, too, we know the score. Had OG Luddites known what fate awaits them, I'm sure most of them would have made peace with machines; just like most other workers have.

You will find nothing more opposed to the goals of conservatism and traditionalism

Eh, I may be able to think of a few competitive options. What's the trad opinion on subhumanism? It's my invention, fresh outta the oven. The gist is that, forget immanentizing eschatons, being a baseline human is a chore, and most reasons to be one have been diminished by progress, so we should accept being less than that. We should return to monke, to a masturbating animal with shriveled neocortex, an irrelevant and fungible load-balancing appendix to corporate economics, and burn out in sedated contentment.

(This is plausibly the sort of shape your descendants will assume, should they inherit your obstinacy. Seeing as transhumanism is the worst thing possible, would this alternative make you happier?)

For surely if they were right, they would all agree or be able to debate themselves to agreement.

And I wouldn't be so sure about that: people are very good at motivated reasoning, to which they owe their prowess at denying reality.

there's a great deal of difference between mere dislike and maximally committed antagonism

One of intensity, not of nature.

Start turning people's children against them, see how much they value their lives over your doom.

You can boil the frog because people don't like to think much about where things are going or don't have the ability to see very far. But when things are clear the moral calculi can become quicker than even conscious thought.

Thus for them this is a pragmatic, not aesthetic argument: a factual claim about ways towards realizing their own genuine desires

And pray tell, what are those "genuine desires" and how are they decided?

I'm sorry but you're just repeating the same objection and it doesn't work. Just because one can make instrumental arguments about what works doesn't answer the underlying question of "works in the service of what?".

We should return to monke

No. Nor are we able. Nor are we able to advance to krab either.

We're not Australopithecus and we're not something beyond either, we're Homo Sapiens, and that's what we must deal with instead of dreaming of reforming humanity in the image of modernism.

That said I'm not against adopting new useful technology. I'm against the idea of pretending that compromising our humanity over it is useful or even possible.

My view of the far future is far closer to Dune than it is Eclipse Phase. We may get more sophisticated or different gizmoes, but for all intents and purposes we'll still be the same great apes and given all attempts at turning us into something different have ended in massive fucking disaster, I'll hold that it is the inevitable consequence until proven wrong.

But as I've often mentioned in this place, if it comes to my descendants having to be space north korea to remain humans, so be it. That's still the preferable option in my opinion.

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I think IGI would say: What exactly is wrong with being "made obsolete and reduced to praying for generosity of your superhuman overlords", other than us not liking it?

For what it's worth, I agree with you that this is the likely consequence of avoiding transhumanism, but I think IGI is saying that both sides of the argument are simply pointing to consequences and pointing out how undesirable they are.

Ah, but you forget the «otherwise you're getting made obsolete and reduced to praying for generosity of your superhuman overlords» argument.

The thing about ought and is, is: it's as much a compelling argument to join the Borg, as it is a compelling argument to declare the Butlerian Jihad now, rather than later.

Upvoted for cogent analysis, though I'll add that as a staunch transhumanist myself it felt a bit like pulling teeth.

Go away. This is either another adequacy.org style troll, or a strawman.

And people, please stop responding seriously to it. The chance that he actually believes this is just about zero. The rhetoric is written to be maximally inflammatory, rather than to express a position. Anyone who actually thought evil needed to be destroyed wouldn't use negatively emotionally charged words like "genocide", "cancer", and destroying "heresy" to describe what he wants done.

It's like having someone argue in favor of abortion by saying "we should commence baby killing". Real abortion supporters wouldn't call it that.

It's not believable enough to be inflammatory.

It's like having someone argue in favor of abortion by saying "we should commence baby killing". Real abortion supporters wouldn't call it that.

Not precisely, Jiro. The scholarly and academic papers that I've looked up online (insofar as I can since you have to log in as part of an academic institution to get the full articles) refer to the "fetus" (American spelling) if they ever tip-toe up to mentioning "killing".

It's only a very few feminist theoreticians who will go Abortion involves killing - and that's okay! and even they won't out-and-out mention "babies":

I agree with Nelson. There is something infantilizing about denying the fact that embryos die when we scrape them out of the bodies of which they are a part. It sentimentalizes pregnant or potentially pregnant humans as fundamentally nonviolent creatures to imply that we can’t handle the truth about what we are up to when we opt out. And it patronizes abortion-getters to insist that we are only making a health care choice, rather than (also) extinguishing a future child. In my view, recognizing that gestating manufactures a proto-person requires acknowledging that abortion kills a proto-person. A baby is completely dependent on human care in order to stay alive, but its needs could be filled by any person—whereas a fetus, a proto-person, is ineluctably dependent on specific person.

...This might seem counterintuitive in the context of an argument in favor of abortion-as-killing, but the distinction between making fetuses killable, and making it easy and stigma-free for people to take the decision to kill a fetus, is significant. The former refers to casting something (a lab rat, for example) out of the sphere the grievable, thanks to a tidy and final verdict on the permissibility of systematically sacrificing its life to a greater cause. The latter, while expanding access to the means of feticide, does not necessarily require any such sanitization of violence.

There seems to have been a fascinating case back in 1975 (the things you find when you go Googling!):

Roe and Doe also did not specifically define abortion, leaving another open question whose answer could affect Edelin's fate. If abortions presuppose the death of the fetus, as Edelin claimed, then his entire procedure was legal and immune from prosecution. But Flanagan's medical experts insisted that an abortion was nothing more than the termination of pregnancy, which could sometimes result in a live birth.

The definition of birth itself became pivotal as witnesses raised questions of fact about the procedure Edelin used and the exact moment the fetus died, Doctors testifying against him agreed that birth means the separation of the placenta from the wall of the womb, the moment at which the fetus "goes on its own systems" for nourishment and oxygen. Defense witnesses repeated the more commonly understood definition of the word as involving expulsion or removal from the mother's body. And Judge McGuire supported that understanding of the word in his charge to the jury.

The distinction was crucial, for Edelin was accused of killing the aborted fetus before removing it from inside its mother. Flanagan charged that he held it motionless inside the womb and watched a wall clock for three minutes as it struggled for air and died. Edelin, supported by testimony from two nurses and a medical student, denied the three-minute wait, and claimed that in fact there was no working wall clock for him to watch. But he did not deny that he had no intention of delivering a live baby: "It would have been contrary to the wishes of the mother."

You do get the canned responses to give to awkward questions worksheet that relies on parroting "there is no one-size-fits-all legislation". Also, seemingly, shoes are very important in making these decisions - you can't make the decision if you haven't walked in the shoes:

When people are making difficult, complicated, personal medical decisions, one-size-fits-all laws don’t work.

2. Why haven’t you taken a stand against infanticide or killing babies who survive an abortion?

What you should avoid

Don’t say "partial-birth," "late-term," or "born alive."

Murder of any person, including newborns, is already a crime, as it should be. This question is not rooted in medical care or science, but rather an intentional disinformation campaign.

Tragically, sometimes a woman gets a diagnosis of a serious health complication that threatens her life or health. Other times, a family learns later in pregnancy there is a very serious fetal diagnosis, or the baby is dying and can’t survive for long. When people are making difficult, complicated, personal medical decisions, one-size-fits-all laws don’t work. We cannot make a woman’s decisions because we haven’t walked in her shoes.

This seems like a troll to me. But if it's not a troll, then it's you wishing death on your outgroup without really engaging the argument in a plausibly serious way--for which you have already been banned once.

This is a discussion forum. If you aren't interested in engaging seriously and charitably with the thoughts of people whose views you abhor, then maybe this is not the place for you.

Banned for three days.

Banning comments like this is bad considering how rare they are. If they were more common I'd agree with a ban, but there is a genuine discourse to be had when people have put their obvious intent of destroying the outgroup into the open. Preventing people from engaging with it by banning the person who opened up leaves this space poorer for it.

If banning comments like this keeps them rare, then I'm happy with that. While the original is a troll, I don't think that there are very many genuine posters on here who do have an "obvious intent of destroying the outgroup" and if there are any, then I prefer that they realise this is not a space where "let's kill everyone we don't like and everyone we disagree with" is welcomed (it may be debated, but not that it is "welcome fellow traveller, yes indeed let us wade in blood up to the ankle!"), and if they see bans and think "Aw man, I thought these guys were dependably [whatever colour of being '-pilled' we're up to now, between redpilled, blackpilled and the rest of it] but they've just succumbed to the Woke Menace" and betake themselves elsewhere, then good.

A few comments like this that get ignored (if obvious trolls) or debated (if they seem sincere) is tolerable. A flood of them is not.

Any discourse that happens ends up happening downthread, not with the actual user. And that discourse between actual contributors ends up being about how evil outgroup is for their "obvious intent of destroying the outgroup." No one would deny people like the troll exist--imagine a viewpoint, and there's always someone, somewhere out there who believes it--but it's just burning down a strawman of those views. It generates a significantly worse ratio of heat to light.

We've got a fairly good thread going here. Do you think your assessment of the likely outcome stands?

It's better than I'd have expected. On the other hand, the original poster has in fact been banned; if he weren't, he'd be in the thread throwing shit everywhere.

A fair point.

Leaving the banned OP’s manifestopost visible and allowing us to “poke the corpse with a stick” is certainly entertaining and enlightening, on the other hand.

I think it's kind of pathetic to not let the guy have a chance to respond. Just looks like effeminate bullying.

There are community standards and legal reasons which both need to be upheld.

This comment is irrelevant to what I wrote. I'm not unaware that there are rules and preferred etiquette here. The point being made was that due to the rarity and novelty of the post you can let it slide.

On the other hand, no, there are not legal reasons at play here. The post did not break laws, which is why it was not removed and the user only got a 3 day ban. You can, in fact, make very provocative statements about what you think should have happened or what you think will happen or should happen in some undetermined legal manner in the future to some group.

To clarify, I meant that the post itself did not break laws, but allowing the user to generate and gather followers here through potential responses would put the site in jeopardy.

'Gather followers'? This is silly. Akin to calling someone responding to your comments 'harassment'.

More comments

Just looks like effeminate bullying.

And what is wrong with effeminacy, you big burly butch man, you? 😘

The bullying part.

Verbal jousting is surely more entertaining but given the guy basically said that all his enemies should be silenced and killed, I think the irony is fitting.

This is kinda sneery but I've always wondered how the IQ realists here square the fact that high IQ is more corelated with liberalism than with any marker of social success; and that low IQ is more corelated with conservatism than with any marker of failure (other than getting charged for felonies).

I guess it just sucks to suck

  • -37

What are you basing this off of?

Given that white liberals are on average richer and better educated than white conservatives, it’s probably true that once you adjust for race there’s probably a correlation between having a higher IQ and voting D. But it’s a much stronger claim you’re making, and I’d like to see the evidence.

In elizabethan england, having a high IQ was correlated with the queen's court, probably. It's possible for smart people to be wrong! Also see how half of the first post in 'open minded progressives' is just shitting on conservatives. Conservatives are wrong too!

high IQ is more corelated with liberalism than with any marker of social success

this seems to evoke a study or poll or something. What study or poll? It'd be kinda weird if IQ is more strongly associated with being a liberal than things that are determined by standardized test scores like college admission, income, etc, although that might be explained by liberalism being continuous while 'social outcomes' being relatively binary.

Can you name some of "the IQ realists here"? If so, would you care to guess at, say, how many of them voted for George W. Bush in 2000, or Romney in 2008?

Imposing a literacy test for voting would show us dumb hicks whose boss. Just look at all those graphs reddit likes to post about how uneducated southern red states are.

Surely that policy would result in a Blue Wave, right?

Most IQ realists tend to be liberals themselves, if only because they are aware that their views are very unpopular and vulnerable to censorship. But it's worth noting that high IQ does not necessarily mean having a correct ideology. The highest-IQ Europeans of a thousand years ago spent their intelligence on elaborate proofs for the existence of God. A hundred and fifty years ago, eugenics and scientific racism were the mainstream ideology. If intelligent people nowadays spend their grey matter on writing diversity statements rather than studying astrology, that reflects simply a change in fashion and culture.

I guess it just sucks to suck

This is very sneery.

This is low effort / boo outgroup. Its also not the kind of thing for a top level comment. 3 day ban. Don't do this.

You must be new to the IQ literature. Research shows high IQ is correlated with fiscal conservativism and that republicans have higher iqs than dems.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0160289614001081

Indeed given the demographics involved this is hardly surprising. Sucks to suck, for sure

Don't respond to trollish, rule-breaking posts with trollish, rule-breaking posts of your own.

I’m merely correcting the record. Not sure how citing data accurately makes me trollish

This:

Indeed given the demographics involved this is hardly surprising. Sucks to suck, for sure

Specifically, IQ is positively correlated with classical liberalism. As a classical liberal, this doesn't bother me much.

Specifically, IQ is positively correlated with classical liberalism. As a classical liberal, this doesn't bother me much.

The only (self selected and unrepresentative) survey of political opinions of extremely high IQ individuals (150+IQ) is here

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triple_Nine_Society

Rather dated, but it is the only thing I could find.

http://milesresearch.com/tns/summary.htm

Summary

The TNS opinions sampled here show a clear preference for minimal government involvement in personal lifestyle matters (drugs, alcohol, tobacco, firearms, pornography, gambling) and commercial business (subsidies, genetic engineering, Internet commerce, trade with China). In addition to preferring a minimum of government regulation, TNS members wish to see an overhaul of our present tax system, support greater funding for scientific research, and do not want the military used as an 'international police force.'

It's low IQ to assume that trends studied in America extrapolate to all humans everywhere across all times, especially in the domain of politics.

But IQ is correlated with trait openness which correlates with liberal temperament. Liberal in the "more free exchange of everything, including ideas liberal" sense.

That does not imply Woke "liberals", who are quite hostile to the free exchange of new ideas.

In short, the word liberal refers to a thousand things. And if you are gonna try to gotcha people, you need to be more clear about it.

IQ is corelated with socio-economic status, which is heavily correlated with ideological compliance since they intellgently intuit what's good for their careers and social advancement (though such a motive is disproportionately the subject of self-delusion).

The high-IQ in the Soviet Union disproportionately became Party Members.

The High-IQ in Medieval europe disproportionately held non-heretical beliefs.

The High-IQ in Imperial japan disproportionately worshipped the emperor.

The High-IQ in Nazi Germany disproportionately supported the Fuher.

The High-IQ in Saudi Arabia disproportionately support Wahhabi Islam.

The High-IQ in China disproportionately support "Socialism with Chinese Characteristics".

And the High-IQ in the US disproportionately support "Liberal Democracy"...and will endorse whatever economic and political system the US has as "liberal democracy" until someone in authority tells them those aren't the words they're using for the regime anymore.

They'll support "Our democracy" and the "liberal international order" no matter if a majority of the people oppose it, and no matter if it tramples every single liberty and free market norm ever referred to as "liberal"

One, rather liberal, answer is that conservatism is based on relatively unsophisticated heuristics for minimizing risk from novelty, exposure to outsiders and attempts at independent thinking – things beneficial for navigating modern society. Smarter people tend to be confident that they're better than that, and they're kinda right (thus, left).

Another, rather illiberal, answer is that IQ is relevant because it predicts comprehensive success at navigating society, from school to retirement. One of the most important components of such a success is generally avoiding pissing off people stronger than you. IQ is required to figure out their preferences regarding your behavior and modify it accordingly. In most cases it's far too frustrating and cognitively taxing to maintain a separate personality and worldview that's grounded in selfish preferences and unbiased exploration, so the mask becomes the face and people contort themselves into the form expected of them on the inside as well. «IQ realists» tend to be disagreeable, and are either good enough to maintain appearances while saying their true beliefs on anonymous forums, or don't care about the cost, or think they can afford it.

«IQ realists» tend to be disagreeable, and are either good enough to maintain appearances while saying their true beliefs on anonymous forums, or don't care about the cost, or think they can afford it.

Would there have been a cost for you to be an IQ realist in Russia?

Not as much as in the West/US, probably – I've always been open about this aspect of my views when asked, and, being able to argue for them politely and with discretion, got decent reception in most groups worth mentioning.

It may be a transient thing, the blessing of Millenials, the only generation that knew a sliver of freedom. Among zoomers and alphas there is growing (I believe) opprobrium evoked by beliefs coded as racist and "chud", because in a sense we are all living in America; and old people are of course influenced by the Soviet Marxist dogma (even though they overwhelmingly do not identify as Marxists), which is identical to the modern American dogma with regards to population differences and expected returns to nurture vs. nature.

IQ specifically is something of a dirty word, which is often justified with a reference to an article «The very best IQ test» by mathematician Vasiliev that made fun of test items in an error-filled translation of Eysenck's popular book «Test your IQ». I gather the original was also bad.

To anyone who has discussed the issue with pro-Ukraine people.

Why do people support Ukraine fighting against Russia, with a strange militaristic fervor, instead of supporting surrendering / negotiating peace?

Anglin makes the points that:

-the war is severely impoverishing Europe due to high energy costs

-the war is destroying Ukraine ( population + territory / infrastructures / institutions)

-continuing the war increases the chances of a world war

Is it cheering for the possible destruction of Russia?

Something to do with the current leadership of Russia, anti-LGBTQ, pro-family policies?

Is it about the 1991 borders of Ukraine, issues with post-Soviet Union border disputes?

Notion that 'if we don't stop Putin now he will never stop no matter what'? Is it something about broadly standing up against aggression of one state vs another, supporting the 'underdog'?

The issue with that one which seems to be central to Alexander's March 22 post is that there isn't much that seems capable of stopping Russia.

Sending another 100k Ukrainians to the meatgrinder for that end seems a little bit harsh coming from people with very little skin in the game.

Just signaling what they are told is the correct opinion?

Is it about saving face, sunk cost at this point?

What would be the best case scenario for a Ukraine/State Department victory?

To my understanding, Putin is not the most radical or dangerous politician in Russia, and an implosion into ethnicity-based sub-regions would cause similar problems to the 'Arab Spring'. Chechens for example would not appear very West-friendly once 'liberated' from Russia.

Not only that, but economic crisis in Europe could generate additional security risks.

  • -13

That and Russia’s eat making capacity appears heavily limited (and reduced from the start of the campaign). Fear of future Russian aggression should now be lowered heavily. Therefore a negotiated settlement that provides some tangible results for both sides seems in the best interest of the world.

Ukraine may balk but if you turn off the funding spigot then Putin can wait out Ukraine and win big. So the US should exert its funding power to get Ukraine to make reasonable concessions.

Ukraine may balk but if you turn off the funding spigot then Putin can wait out Ukraine and win big. So the US should exert its funding power to get Ukraine to make reasonable concessions.

What would you consider reasonable concessions that are not "accept Russia's terms"?