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Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Random Ramblings #4

I received a snowstorm for my birthday this year.
I have shit to do but I thought I'd let out some steam:

To everyone who is in this territory known as "New Hampshire" right now: yes, we get snow in the winter. And yes, we get quite a lot of it. I'm amazed how few of you were prepared for it this year, and this is obvious by your online posts in which you whine about how you've never had to deal with weather like this before when you lived in Texas/California/Arizona/ Florida/Georgia/Auburn, AL.

But seriously, for all your cries that government spending on anything constitutes a broken window fallacy (I hope to god Scumbag Fred is burning in the fourth ring of Hell right now, and not just because I'm a mutualist), and your fetishes for "self-sufficiency", you certainly tend to think that the town or state government is going to plow your neighborhood. We don't do that here in NH. We plow our own streets and do it multiple times during a blizzard so we're only pushing around four inches of snow at a time instead of a foot. We know PSNH is incompetent more often than not so the majority of us have generators as well. It's not because we pay so few taxes, it's because we know what we're in for so we know how to deal (La Loi de Say is still bullshit, folks).

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Ever notice how in radical circles there's an increasing tendency to reject the use of logic on the basis that (aristotelian) logic is a tool of oppression (in particular, cultural hegemony)? I've been in a few conversations where I've heard comrades say things like: "(aristotelian) logic is imperialist!" every time logic is used to justify something they don't like. However, they will flip their entire position and use logic to justify something they do like (or just point out that their enemies are not using logic in their arguments in their bullshit justifications for oppression). But really - logic is imperialist? Am I missing something here? Logic (of any philosophical school) is not inherently anything; logic is merely a tool like a hammer or a knife. One person can use a knife to cut apples off a tree for food, another can use a knife to stab someone. See what I mean?

I don't give a shit if you think that logic is completely euro-centric and should therefore never, ever be consulted by political radicals because anything euro-centric is somehow evil (although, wasn't it the very non-European Arabs who preserved the philosophical texts of the Greeks?); what I do find puke-worthy is the inconsistency. Either you reject logic completely like you say you do or you don't, just don't be a hypocrite about it. Gah.

And I will say, Dr. Bradley told us first day of logic class that we think logic explains the universe but it really doesn't. Logic is constantly changing just like mathematics or physics. A huge misconception is the notion that everything known in logic today was known since the time of Aristotle, but in reality new shit is being discovered and old things are discarded all the time. Logic is in no way a magic bullet; like I stated previously, it is merely a tool, and it seems that both the people who deny logic and who tote logic as the greatest thing on earth have very little understanding of this particular tool.

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Is it just me, or does it seem like the people who criticize Marx and/or Proudhon have barely read Marx and/or Proudhon? I'm seeing this quite often on Facebook, Reddit, and Youtube. What's worse are the people who refuse to pick either of these dudes up and read them in-full because they're worried about all their little orthodoxies being challenged. You make me laugh.

On the same note, I would highly recommend that sociology students who read snippets of Marx in their SOC classes read the man's full texts. Most of these students grab on to quasi-marxism without knowing anything about the Labor Theory of Value or the Hegelian Dialectic; in other words, they have no fucking idea what they are truly reading! Maybe all you social justice types would be quite shocked to realize that Marx rejected the concept of social justice and even mocked Proudhon for basing his mutualist ideas on such! (Though to be fair, any marxist will tell you that marxism has absolutely nothing to do with morality, so I don't think I'm misrepresenting anything here.) Jussayin'.

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As well, quoting-out-of-context makes you a fucking moron. As a student of philosophy, quote-mining is a huge pet peeve of mine that I'm also seeing more often than I used to, particularly on Reddit and various blogs, and mostly for the purpose of using an ad hominem attack. Ugh, grow up people, either make a valid argument or don't.

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Something I see way too often concerning political/social leftists is the fetish many of them seem have for their own victimhood. Many times people on the left appear to love thinking of themselves as victims, no doubt because their movements rely a lot on gaining sympathy as their primary means of getting support (leftists also tend to think that numbers matter in every case, which is just not true depending on the situation).  I even see this on the free market left, where small businesses are the ones propped up as "victims" of Big Government, Big Business, and so on, which is true to an extent but it falls into the same holes that similar leftist ideology does.

The thing is, I'm starting to think that this "we are the victims" mentality and all the sympathy created from it is one of the reasons why people on the left are so hesitant to resist their oppressors. Instead of crying about victimhood, why not celebrate the resistance - or even start the resistance? But I've found that proposals for acts of resistance (not even violent ones, but things as small-scale as starting a coop or taking over abandoned buildings) are continually shot down. Why is that? Is it because we'd rather keep sobbing to gain all the attention than do what needs to be done to liberate ourselves?

Anyway, I know that's a touchy subject but I've been thinking about it lately.

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I get bothered by the fact that both market anarchists and anarcho-communists (not all of them, but a good amount) promote ideologies that rest on some kind of absolutism or perfect property relation. For example, many market anarchists will envision some kind of "totally free market" that's absolutely perfect in every way, and will propagate the notion that all that's wrong with society stems from a deviation from this "perfect totally free market". It's the same way with many communists who promote the idea of a "full communism"; relying on anthropology - in other words, naturalistic fallacies - they point out that human society began in full communism, and that internal issues within society only came about as soon as full communism was deviated from. I love anarcho-communists very much but I just don't think full communism is at all possible, and I find the dogma present in much of their ideas problematic.

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Okay, I've been drinking way too much for these past few days and can't think of anything else. So happy new fear and happy new debt everyone. Feel free to comment, criticize, post this shit to Facebook, whatever.

Bring me to Liberty Forum this year and I will find some way to semi-troll the place like Comrade Keating and I did back in 2010. 'Twas fun. The ad for the event makes me sick.


2 comments:

  1. LOL...i just checked out the website for the liberty forum; keynote speaker from the Ludwig von Mises forum?!?!...getting zonked and spending a day LMAO at those people might just have to happen....anyway, I really enjoyed this blog! it gave me a lot to think about!

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  2. The speaker is Tom Woods, a pseudo-historian who propagates anti-union and market fundie rhetoric (he's a Merrimack Valley native from North Andover, to add). I'm thinking I might want to troll him, but it would need to be something big.

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