I thought I'd review a book for a change. Actually, I'm getting ready for my own review of Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein, but I really wanted to pick up Evan Sayet's book on psychopaths, Kindergarten of Eden-How the Modern Liberal Thinks, because I saw this classic YouTube speech he gave at the Heritage Foundation that seems like ages ago, before the Dark Times, before the Empire.
Then I saw the interview he gave on PJTV about his book, and I immediately downloaded it because, well, I had nothing better to do, and I read clean through it, though it is not the complete book, as I understand.
Watching this classic speech, Evan Sayet points out the salient points of the book, but the book goes further in depth.
There are four laws of Modern Liberal (I call them Leftist) thought:
Law 1: Indiscriminateness - the total rejection of the intellectual process - is an absolute moral imperative.
Law 2: Indiscriminateness of thought does not lead to indiscriminateness of policies. It leads to siding only and always with the lesser over the better, the wrong over the right, and the evil over the good.
Law 3: Modern Liberal policies occur in tandem. Each effort on behalf of the lesser is met with an equal and opposite campaign against the better.
Law 4: The Modern Liberal will ascribe to the better the negative qualities associated with the lesser while concurrently ascribing to the lesser the positive qualities found in the better.
This is because, as Evan points out, that the Leftist believes that discrimination of thought has not brought us the kind of utopian society that he wants, that everything from the past 10,000 years has to be rejected on this basis. That no religion, no philosophy, no science or forms of government has created the pure egalitarian life and world, the Paradise of Eden if you will, that he believes is possible. So he rejects the very basis of rational thought as evil, which is to discriminate between right and wrong, good and evil, and excellent versus poor. In so doing, he believes that if you don't believe in a right and wrong, good and evil, excellent and poor, which are merely the results of your personal and cultural prejudices, you will have nothing to fight for. And if you have nothing to fight for, you won't have anything to go to war over.
This naturally gels nicely with what I've been saying from the start in this blog. Mindset is everything, and it is critical to understand how not only your own mindset affects who you are and what you do, but your adversaries as well.
Because the Leftist doesn't believe in a right and wrong, everything becomes merely a flavor, as Evan Sayet puts it, not intrinsically or particularly better or worse than any other. But because there is a right and a wrong, because there is a good and an evil, the Leftist must do what he can to bring both things to parity, by tearing down what is right and elevating what is wrong so that there is no distinction.
For example, homosexuality has been, for the past 40 years or so, been elevated by the Left to be as viable and normal a lifestyle choice as heterosexuality. More than that, they believe it's not a lifestyle, not a choice, but an inherent characteristic. There is no scientific or medical basis for this belief, but they do not care. That doesn't matter to them. What matters is that there is no right and wrong, no good or evil by which anything can be judged. Those that do judge things on that basis, however, are to be vilified as evil.
Whenever there's a sex scandal involving a Democrat, you will see Leftists of all stripes come out and defend the creep, ridicule the issue as being trivial, and vilify anyone who dares to cast a moral judgment on the man.
Whenever there's rockets being fired into Israel, the Leftist will invariably side with the faction that is attacking the tiny state, in this case Muslim Palestinian Jihadists such as the PLO, because they are considered the lesser than the Israelis. They will say that Israel is an apartheid state (clearly false to anyone who knows better), they will see any act of retaliation by the Israelis as not only evil, but an act of bigotry.
In any garden variety issue, it's so easy to predict how these people are going to side, because they cannot make rational judgments.
Evan separates the Leftist, the Modern Liberal, into two camps, the True Believer, and the Mindless Foot Soldier. What separates the two is that the latter doesn't think about anything; he just reflexively goes with what sounds the most tolerant and the least judgmental.
Without going over everything in this book, which you should go out and get, I'd like to add a few comments of my own that coincides with all this, hopefully not to steal any valuable information that will, no doubt, come in volume two.
This is more than an ideology to the Leftist, but it is his religion. He doesn't think of it as such directly, because he doesn't think. Thinking requires rational judgment that seeks objective truths and wisdom; the Leftist is intentionally doing anything possible to avoid all that. This is why he never evaluates his own beliefs. He doesn't feel he has to. He feels he is good and just, therefore he is.
What is the alternative for him? What takes the least effort to do?
I know Leftists. I live among them in Portlandia. A great many of them have told me to my face that they do not want to think too hard about anything. They do not want to be convinced that I might be right, and they might be wrong, and that something or other is wrong or bad or evil.
During the Todd Akin squabble, I told one young Lefty that what he was basically saying was that murdering an unborn baby because it was conceived in an act of rape is as wrong, if not more so, than the rape itself. She did not want to hear that. No Lefty has an adequate response to that. Indeed, they then rationalize the act of murder in various ways. Once, I debated with an abortion supporter who compared pregnancy with a disease. I'm not kidding. He was saying that it was a biological infection, and infestation, that compromised a woman's body, and she therefore has the right to murder it if she so chooses. The young lady I was talking to about Akin told me to my face, "Well, so what? Akin is an ass." And that was that.
She didn't want a debate. She didn't want to think maybe executing someone else for a crime they didn't commit was wrong. All she could see was a woman's right to choose. That's all that mattered to her.
Evan Sayet says that it is this mindset that the Modern Liberal, the Leftist, is locked into, akin to being locked into that precocious age of 5 when you had no responsibilities, nothing to be worried about. In Eden, he points out that there was no worries. God took care of everything. You didn't need to worry about your food, your clothes (since everyone was naked), your health, or whatever. It was Paradise. The Leftist is trying to get back there, and he doesn't care who he hurts or kills to do so.
It's happened before. 100 million people murdered by Socialist states over the 20th Century, not counting Nazi Germany, attest to the lengths to which these people will go to achieve their aims.
Where I disagree with Evan Sayet is their condition of Evil. I come at this from a metaphysical, theological point of view, which says that we're all evil. Even the saints are evil, and that nobody deserves Heaven on their own. He contends that a lot of Leftists aren't evil, but those who do evil, even with the best of intentions, are by definition evil. The question is then, what do you do about it?
See, these people absolutely will not stop. They have the courage of their consciences, or lack thereof, guiding them in what they do. There will never, ever be a point where these people will ever stop. Today, same-sex marriage, tomorrow the castigation and persecution of faithful Jews and Christians. Why? Because we discriminate on the basis of right and wrong, good and evil.
Paradise and perfection are not for this world, but you can't tell these people that. They will not stop.
It is important to understand why if we are going to beat these people, and take back our nation.
I can't wait for volume two!
In mere moments after the horrific massacre of 27 people in Newtown, Connecticut, including 20 children, the Left is on the march for more gun control. They do not stop. They take any and every opportunity to promote their agenda. They never let a crisis go to waste.
I'd like to remind my fellow conservatives out there that Life is perpetual War. Our enemies do not stop, ever. They don't stop their attack on us, who are their number one enemy. Why are we their number one enemy? Because we represent the most direct threat to their power. We're determined, self-reliant, capable, and moral.
Life is perpetual War. To win, we must declare war on ourselves first, and weed out any dilemmas and issues which may inhibit our capabilities, our tactics and our strategy. If we are to take the nation, and perhaps the world back, we need to be ready for the war.
Which brings me to our leadership. I'm not happy with the current Republican leadership. It is clear that they are aimless, clueless, and idiotic. Purging key congressional seats of conservatives is not going to win them elections. John Boehner is so demoralized that he needs to leave. He's too far gone. We need new warriors in this fight. And that's what we need, warriors.
We need men and women who are willing to take it to these people in the Federal Government, and unapologetically make the case against them. It is time we declared war on the Left; they have already done so with us.
There is a cold, hard, and terrifying truth about Life that everyone must face in some way. If you accept it, you're probably a Conservative, and if you reject it, you're definitely a Statist.
It is: Nobody will care about your needs, wants, and desires nearly as much as you will.
If you rely on someone to get something done for you, whether or not you pay him, whether or not he's related to you or whatever, in truth they will not care about your priority unless they make it their number one priority. They are individuals, and unless what your priority is has to do with life or limb and they deeply care about your existence, then chances are they're going to put your priority at a lower priority in their lives than you ordinarily would for yourself. This isn't good or bad; this is reality.
You ever ask someone to pick you up something from the store, and they forget about it? You ever ask someone to pick up your dry-cleaning, and they forget? How about something a little more important; surely in your life you had to be somewhere, but you were helpless to the whim of someone else who didn't see the urgency or importance of being somewhere the way you did? And as a result, you were late, or you lost an opportunity to get what you wanted, a job, a contract, something you needed for school or a project, etc.
It's part of Life, but that the more you rely on others, the more likely you are to be disappointed. This isn't to say that everyone else but you is selfish, but they are all individuals. We do not share each other's minds. So our priorities will rarely ever be the same as anyone elses. Anyone who's ever employed people to work knows this; just because you pay someone doesn't mean you're getting 110% out of them all the time. Again, not that they're selfish, and not that they're lazy, but that they have lives apart from yours.
If you believe and understand this truth, you will more than likely try to do something about it. This is at the heart of why I'm a Conservative.
I try to make myself as self-reliant as possible where I can, when I can. Whenever I have a problem or something I need to get done, I first always look to myself. If I can't look to myself for some reason, I consider why; what skill or tool do I lack to get the job done myself? I then determine if it's worth my while to get that skill or tool, and do things myself.
The more skills and abilities and tools you have to accomplish a job, especially little jobs that happen in day-to-day living, the more powerful you become and the more useful, not just to yourself, but to others.
It's one thing I notice about Leftists and Statists; very few of them really know how to do much of anything useful. Very few of them own basic tools, and even fewer of them own the kinds of tools I have in storage. Among my own apartment building in Portlandia, I seem to be the most useful person there: I can cook, clean, fix cars, build furniture, lay carpet, do plumbing, fix electrical, fix HVAC, fix holes in drywall, fix washers and dishwashers, iron, sew, shine boots, paint, change oil, tires, and gaskets, mend shoes, fix bicycles, fix balconies and stairs, fix a roof, pick a lock, render first aid and CPR (and I'm up to date), do taxes, write up resumes, write cover letters, play piano and saxophone, and fly helicopters and airplanes, among other things.
I put myself out there to help others if and when I can, and when I do I try to do my very best effort. This isn't to say that their priorities become my priorities, but the way I see it this is a chance to test and refine my abilities. This makes me more powerful, and it also shows these people that I'm not the monster the Democrats paint me out to be.
What often strikes me about Leftists is that they do not see the power of self-reliance. Many of them think they're self-reliant, but if that's the case why do these people come to me to fix their bikes? I've noticed that their self-reliance is interdependent on government services, and they think this makes them more self-reliant. Unfortunately, what they don't understand is that government is largely inept and incapable, principally because your priorities will never be their priorities.
Anyone who's ever rode on public transit knows you got to wait as the bus stops several times at other stops before you get to the one you want. You have to conform your activities to the bus's schedule. If you have to be at work, you better get to the bus stop at a time that would factor in how long it would take it to get at least close to where you need to be, and that could take a lot longer than if you drove yourself.
God forbid a disaster happens and you need to get out of town before the hurricane shows up. As Hurricane Katrina showed, public transit and government services aren't going to get you out.
Similarly, police, while invariably capable, are generally reactive to crime, and only devote a smaller percentage of their resources to pro-active crime prevention. That means that if you encounter an assailant somewhere, whether on the street or in your home, the police will not be able to help you right there and then unless they happen to be right there and then. This is why Conservatives, naturally, are big on gun rights; it's not to hunt game, but to protect yourself.
Government is the only institution that can rob me of any of my resources legally. Every dollar taken from me is a dollar I cannot use, and that means I'm less capable overall than I might otherwise be. That means I have to work that much harder to stay capable and functional, both to myself and for those I care about.
Leftists cannot seem to understand this because they do not see the value of self-reliance, because they do not ask themselves "What if?" What if the men with the badges aren't there to protect you? What if disaster strikes, and you need to get out of town? What if there's nobody to help you?
It's this kind of forethought that it seems Leftists lack, and I'm talking about the rank-and-file Leftist, not the leadership kind.
The more you can do for yourself, the more you can do for others. And the more you can do for others, the more powerful you can be, especially if you exceed their expectations in terms of quality and reliability.
Bert Gordon: Eddie, is it alright if I get personal?
Fast Eddie: Whaddaya been so far?
Bert Gordon: Eddie, you're a born loser.
Fast Eddie: What's that supposed to mean?
Bert Gordon: First time in ten years I ever saw Minnesota Fats hooked... really hooked. But you let him off.
Fast Eddie: I told you I got drunk.
Bert Gordon: Sure you got drunk. You have the best excuse in the world for losing; no trouble losing when you got a good excuse. Winning... that can be heavy on your back, too, like a monkey. You'll drop that load too when you got an excuse. All you gotta do is learn to feel sorry for yourself. One of the best indoor sports, feeling sorry for yourself. A sport enjoyed by all, especially the born losers.
Fast Eddie: Thanks for the drink.
---The Hustler (1961), starring Paul Newman and George C. Scott.
Go to a book store, particularly one with a business management or leadership section, and you will see scads of books on how to develop the proper attitude to succeed at business. Why? Because it all begins with you. If your mind isn't in the right place, it affects your attitude. If you're attitude is wrong, over time you will fail to succeed. You may fail anyway even with a good attitude and proper mindset, but at the least you can be sure that it wasn't entirely your fault.
Mindsets lead to attitudes which can be infectious on others you deal with, especially if they haven't developed the habits of forming and focusing their mindset. Most people haven't, by the way. People gravitate to those who seem confident, have a good grasp of what they're doing, and demonstrate good performance. Conversely, there are also grumblers, people who are dissatisfied with the status quo, and either want things their way (control) or they want to get out. They rarely get out. So they spread their disaffection about, and people do gravitate to that because pessimism can also sound reasonable.
The passage I cited above from one of my all-time favorite films, The Hustler, points out the mindset of the grumbler. In that film, Paul Newman plays Fast Eddie Felson, a hustling pool shark who, in the beginning of the film, plays the best pool player in the country, Minnesota Fats, played by Jackie Gleason. During a marathon session, he actually manages to beat Fats to his desired goal, winning $10,000.00. But, then, he gets drunk, and he begins to lose. Fats doesn't quit, and even takes the time to refresh himself in the middle of their impromptu tournament. He drinks about as much as Eddie does, but he never got as drunk. In the end, Eddie decided to lose.
Because then he'd be the best in the country, and he'd have to continually prove it, or so he believed. But what Eddie didn't understand is that winners have a goal, and they go out to achieve it. They don't let people push them into anything they don't want to do. Eddie literally begged Fats with a measly few hundred he had left at the end, but Fats left. He won, and everyone knew it. There was no sense in stealing from a great pool player who had fallen down drunk.
Winners don't have to prove anything, unless they want to. They strive to achieve a goal. In order to achieve that goal, they focus on what they need to in order to succeed.
Survival experts will tell you that a proper attitude is essential to survival. Without that will, without a good attitude that is optimistic, that motivates you to do what you need to do to survive, your odds of survival drops through the floor. You will begin to shut down in despair, self-pity, and eventually you will die.
An improper mindset isn't just bad for an individual, but for a group as well. Grumblers, as I've mentioned, can get a group of people killed. If you are in charge of a group of people, whether it's a team, a business, an organization, a military unit, or even a nation, you have to deal with the grumblers under your command. You have to prevent their attitudes from infecting the rest of the group. If that means you have to straighten them out, kick their ass, kick them out, or, if the situation warrants, have them killed, that's what you have to do. Nothing can kill a team like a poor spirit.
Leaders have a responsibility to see to the team's success, and letting grumblers hold sway over the attitude of the team is going to cause them to lose. Morale is important to the success of any mission, whether it's your own, or the team's. Morale, by the way, isn't happiness; it is the willingness to do what is required.
You can read hundreds of stories about all this if, for some reason, you're born yesterday and haven't intereacted with people all that much.
I think a great success story is the legend of the 300 Spartans at the Battle of Thermopalae. Together with some 3,000 to 5,000 or more other Greeks, the Spartans held off the advance of a vastly larger Persian Army for three days by cutting off access to the rest of Greece at a very narrow path. If King Leonidas and his Spartans didn't take charge, or if they, themselves, weren't capable or prepared for this kind of fight, they wouldn't have succeeded as well as they did. In fact, they wouldn't have gone in the first place. What? They lost the battle, you say? Leonidas did not go there to kill every Persian that landed on Greek rocks, though he would've if he could. He was buying time for the other states in Greece to muster their own forces and evacuate the cities. In that, he succeeded brilliantly at the cost of his life and the lives of his soldiers.
An example of a bad failure is, undoubtedly, the infamous Mutiny on the Bounty. The mission, chartered by the Royal Society, was to go to Tahiti, pick up a thousand breadfruit plants, and take them to Jamaica where they would be used as a main food source for the slaves there. Lt. William Bligh also had designs on circumnavigating the globe, as he had done with Captain Cook a few years earlier when he served on the HMS Resolute.
After failing to pass through the treacherous seas around Cape Horn, Bligh replaces the ship's sailing master (executive officer), John Fryer, with Fletcher Christian, a man of modest experience. This would serve to undermine the morale of the crew, because now Christian was under the gun, and if he failed to motivate the crew beyond what they ordinarily would be prone to do, it would be Christian's butt, not theirs.
They get to Tahiti after ten months at sea. There, the botanist has them wait five more months so that the breadfruit trees they collect are grown and mature enough to survive the trip to Jamaica. Bligh lets his crew effectively have several months of liberty, having the time of their lives ravishing the gorgeous Tahitian women. Most of his officers partake of this, including Fletcher Christian, whom Bligh has to order back on the ship.
When it came time to leave Tahiti, the Bounty had a completely demoralized crew. Bligh's own inept leadership caused the mutiny; he did not do anything that would've sharpened the men's morale to do the job they needed to do. By removing Fryer, he undermined his own chain of command aboard the ship. By putting Christian in his place, the crew found a buddy, not a tyrant, over them. By letting his officers and crew delight in Paradise and sexual bliss for a few months, Bligh did nothing to give them any loyalty to England and their homes, especially when you have men pressed into service as was the custom of the era. Had he kept Fryer in charge, and kept the men busy by sailing around on "make work" while the botanist grew his plants, he might've averted the mutiny that robbed him of his command.
It's telling that this would only be the first mutiny Bligh would have. He had another. Though Bligh was an outstanding seaman, an excellent navigator and sailor, he was a horrible leader. To be fair, he served under Captain James Cook, and Cook probably made his job look effortless.
Mindset can spell the difference between success and failure, but more importantly mindset is important when you do fail. This is so you don't give up; you may lose battles, but in the end, with a proper mindset, you can win the war.
When I was a kid, with dreams of conquering the world (literally), I wanted to make some money. And I did what a lot of kids that age did, I delivered newspapers. Max Wylde...Paper Boy!
This was not an easy job at first glance. When I first got the job, I was not prepared for getting up at 4 AM just to roll up newspapers or put them in plastic bags in case it rained. Then, after that, I realized how important it was to keep my BMX dirt bike in tip-top shape. Because, if I went out to the track each afternoon after school to do my jumps and tricks and such, I might crack up the bike and then I'd be hard-pressed to deliever a hundred or so papers each and every morning to my customers. But, I did it. I lost customers, but when I got it down pat I didn't lose any, and I got paid.
After I got the toys I wanted (Omega Supreme - the last line of Autobot defense - pictured above), the next thing I knew I had money. Lots of it.
Unlike most kids, who bought lots of toys, I did something else; I bought people.
That's right. There were kids in my school who I gave money to. In exchange, they became part of my gang. One kid, in particular, didn't have money for lunches and his parents didn't give him much in the way of food, so I paid his way. He became one of my best lugs. Nobody messed with me.
On occassion I'd get some kid who didn't care for me for some reason, and want to kick my ass. The next thing he knew he had fifteen boys coming at him. They would harass him, TP his house that evening, steal his lunch, put yogurt in his backpack, all before the end of the day. He would come crawling to me apologizing.
It felt great to have that kind of power. One of the ancillary benefits of that power was I could play with any toy I wanted from my "employees." One kid had the G.I. Joe Aircraft Carrier, the USS Flagg. Whoa, boy, this thing was awesome!
But, I didn't really have an idea of what I was actually doing to some of these kids. When my father was ordered to move to Fort Ord, California, I had to leave. But, strangely, we came back a year later to the Fort Lewis area, and what I saw kind of disturbed me.
I had created a gang of cretins. Not one of the kids I paid ever got a paper route of their own, or any means of making money. When I had left, the poor kid that I bought his lunches for resented me leaving and was hoping that I'd help him out again (which I did). Many became bullies. And when I got my old paper route again and began making money, I kept most of it instead of buying a mob and began buying things like rockets, fireworks, and all sorts of goodies (I had this explosives phase that I'm still going through).
I literally had kids coming to me for a hand out. That sucked. And then some of them tried to beat me up for money. They knew I had it, and they thought that if they could harass me that I would pay them extortion money. That didn't work, but it almost did. My entire sixth grade was not a fun time for me.
Fortunately, my father was ordered to somewhere else and I got away from that environment.
But you see this in so many ways in society today. And I'm not just talking about people who are on welfare, but people who have jobs and are living paycheck to paycheck for some reason. They become dependant on the job and not on themselves to be self-reliant. When I get a new job, I save my first two paychecks, or at least most of them. Then, I try to build a savings program so that, in the event I lose my job for some reason, I have something to fall back on until I find another job.
When you become dependant on someone, they have power over you. When you rely on them for your needs, and most particularly your wants, they get to call the shots for you, or your cut off. Conversely, if you are not careful, you may end up with a pack of cretins who will take your paycheck for granted and demand that the payments never cease.
Power requires a mindful responsibility. Looking back, I should've taught that poor kid how to fish, helping him get a paper route so that he wasn't so dependent on me or anyone else. I was too blind to see the problem. I was just a kid, what did I know? Taking care of people means helping them to become self-reliant, so that they see you as a friend, not as a meal ticket.