The Optimist Club Incognito

Posted by mshupe 6 months, 3 weeks ago to Culture
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Selected Quotes:
1. "People were to be given authority in this new order not in recognition of their gifts, hard work, accomplishments, or contributions to society, but in inverse proportion to the disadvantages their group had suffered."
2. "I saw this inverting worldview swallow all of the crucial sense-making institutions of American life. It started with the universities. Then it moved on to cultural institutions—including some I knew well, like The New York Times."
3. "In reality, these words are now metaphors for an ideological movement bent on recategorizing every American not as an individual, but as an avatar of an identity group."
4. "DEI is about arrogating power. And the movement that is gathering all this power does not like America or liberalism. It does not believe that America is a good country—at least no better than China or Iran."
5. "It demonizes hard work, merit, family, and the dignity of the individual. An ideology that pathologizes these fundamental human virtues is one that seeks to undermine what makes America exceptional."
SOURCE URL: https://www.tabletmag.com/sections/news/articles/end-dei-bari-weiss-jews


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  • Posted by j_IR1776wg 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    We Humans are complicated beings. We are, at base, mammalian hunters (Eyes in the front, loves to hunt). When this aggressiveness is combined with our unique abilities of Reason, Emotion, and Imagination we do both, soar to the highest levels of achievement in Business, the Arts, Sciences, Technology, and Philosophy, and yet, sink to the lowest levels of savagery imaginable as was exhibited in Israel on October 7th. We just left a century behind that witnessed both incredible achievement and incredible cruelty and bloodshed. This Century shows little abatement in the slaughter of innocents. Why have we come so far and done so well only to continue the Century after Century practice of killing each order?

    On a local level (Individual), the two worst traits of Humans are Taking and Lying. Taking that which belongs to others (Plato) includes Life, Property, Liberty, and Dignity, among others. Lying (Joe Gabriele and millions of others) seems to erupt from minds so afraid of the reality of their senses that they seem compelled to construct their own version of reality and hope they can convince others to go along.

    A perfect world would begin with the concept that what is yours is yours, what is mine is mine, and where we disagree, we can settle in an objective court (blind justice).
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    • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      At the risk of being simplistic, I think this was a primary conflict in Atlas Shrugged: The Mind Body Dichotomy. Hank Rearden's morality when dealing with the metaphysical world was impeccable. His moral code in ethics was critically flawed. One major theme of the novel was his journey toward recognizing that and resolving it. The Mind Body Dichotomy has as much power as ever.
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      • Posted by j_IR1776wg 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        I think that the inability of Humans to separate themselves from their hunter-gatherer nature and rely instead on their native Reason, Emotions, and Imagination is key to understanding the endless centuries of warfare.
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        • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
          You may be on to something there. While that may be true for the majority of people, does it not presume that we are of a collective mind? Does it not presume that evil potent? Is that not deterministic, thereby dismissing free will? What about ideas driving culture instead of culture driving ideas?

          On another note, whereas this forum is administered for mediocrity, and whereas we can make strong case the God of the Machine series and Ominous Parallels series are the greatest content this site has ever witnessed, and whereas the best content is now hidden and titled The Optimist Club, we leverage the distinction of being Hidden as the place to be in GG online. After all, the Gulch was Hidden.
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          • Posted by j_IR1776wg 6 months, 2 weeks ago
            https://www.primatespark.com/what-ani...

            On a physiological level (DNA), our closest non-human relatives are chimpanzees. Per the above site
            “What animal has the closest DNA to humans? Ever since researchers sequenced the chimp genome in 2005, they’ve recognized that people share about 99% of our DNA with chimpanzees, making them our closest dwelling relatives.”
            This implies that a human-to-human comparison picked from anywhere on Earth would result in a 99.99…% similarity or greater.

            https://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...

            “Humans are known for sporting big brains. On average, the size of primates' brains is nearly double what is expected for mammals of the same body size. Across nearly seven million years, the human brain has tripled in size, with most of this growth occurring in the past two million years.”

            Whether our ability to Reason, Emote, and Imagine is embedded within that 1% difference of DNA or within the unexplained growth of our brains, it does not appear to be the case that our ability to do these three things has not replaced the aggressiveness we share with our chimpanzee cousins.

            https://www.livescience.com/56306-pri...

            “Why do humans kill each other? It's a question that has been posed for millennia. At least part of the answer may lie in the fact that humans have evolved from a particularly violent branch of the animal family tree, according to a new study.

            From the seemingly lovable lemur to the crafty chimpanzee and mighty gorilla, the mammalian order of primates — to which humans belong — kill within their own species nearly six times more often than the average mammal does, Spanish researchers found.”

            And goes on to say
            “The researchers calculated that about 2 percent of all human deaths have been caused by interpersonal violence — a figure that matches the observed values for prehistoric humans such as Neanderthals, and most other primates. [8 Humanlike Behaviors of Primates]
            "[This is a level of] violence we should have only considering our specific position in the mammalian phylogenetic [evolutionary] tree," Gómez told Live Science. "Within primates, humans are not unusually violent." Yet unlike violence among other mammals, the levels of lethal interpersonal human violence have fluctuated throughout history — from low levels during nomadic periods, to higher levels when plunder and conquest became profitable, to lower levels in the era of civilized societies.

            This implies, perhaps optimistically, that human culture can influence our evolutionarily inherited level of lethal violence, the researchers said. In other words, we can control our propensity for violence — however deep-rooted it may be — better than other primates can.”

            Evolution moves slowly. A statistical analysis cannot be performed on a population of one. We are aware of only one Human race in Earth’s history. Perhaps it will take another 7 million years of constantly evolving away from our cousins before we are capable of living in peace as fully developed Humans – totally dependent on Reason and Imagination with control over our Emotions and without our primate heritage of violence.
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  • Posted by mccannon01 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    Excellent article! Thanks for posting, mshupe.

    From the article: "I was told by most Jewish leaders that, yes, it wasn’t great, but not to be so hysterical. Campuses were always hotbeds of radicalism, they said. This ideology, they promised, would surely dissipate as young people made their way in the world." If I recall my history it seems some German Jews were saying similar statements around 1933.

    Someone brought up the observation that DEI had it's last two letters reversed and it should be DIE.
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    • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      Thank you, and in that vein, here is an excerpt from The Ominous Parallels series:

      "Progressively abandoning their Aristotelian heritage, the philosophers of the Enlightenment had reached a state of formal bankruptcy in the skepticism of David Hume. By the time of the Weimar Republic, Germany’s intellectuals had reached a consensus. As they conceived it, as described by Walther Rathenau; an admired liberal commentator, a practical man, and a Jew: “Understanding will never be able to tell us what to believe, what to hope for, and what to offer up sacrifices for.”
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  • Posted by VetteGuy 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    Excellent article. Quote #2 above reminds me of the education chapter in "The God of the Machine".

    I fear that we are too far down the slippery slope to claw our way back. The universities have corrupted the teachers, who have corrupted the children, who become the next generation of teachers.

    Reversing this trend would require the universities to start teaching logic and traditional values (like "hard work, merit, family, and the dignity of the individual"). Unfortunately, today's universities are the least likely places for these values to be taught.
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    • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      Yes, thank you! For the benefit of those who are reading this but not The God of the Machine Series, here is a relevant paragraph.

      "There can be no greater stretch of arbitrary power than to seize children from their parents, teach them whatever the authorities decree they shall be taught, and expropriate from parents the funds to pay for the procedure. The intrinsic nature of the power was so little realized that this was called “free education,” the most absolute contradiction of facts by which language is capable. A tax supported, compulsory educational system is the complete model of the totalitarian state."
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  • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    To me, this belongs in the Optimist Club because this is a well-known member of MSM, formerly an editor at the NYT. They are finally coming around!
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