Moron bites (#1)

Time for a new occasional series here — devoted to persistent minimum-intelligence memes unworthy of serious attention, except as socio-cultural symptoms. To be exhibited in this series, an ‘argument’ has to be strictly beneath contempt. It’s sheer zombie thought — which means it isn’t thought at all. (Recommendations will be collected, with gratitude.)

To initiate Moron bites, it would surely be difficult to improve upon this:

It is obviously essential to the genre that its instances are inter-changeable, and familiar. They do not rise to a level of sophistication consistent with significant differentiation, and the moron reservoir from whose shallows they flop out onto the bubbling ooze, is thrashed by a ceaseless ritual of zombie generation. This one is of course a classic ad hominem argument, the laziest way to bury a provocation beneath a slur, and the refuge of the half-wit throughout history. Michael Anissimov has already done a sound job of incinerating it, noting its roots in infantile projection. Nothing further is really necessary (if, in fact, anything at all was).

Still, there is something that can be added, and it is articulated very clearly by Hans Hermann Hoppe in this talk (about 29 minutes in). Aristocratic privileges are not difficult to acquire today, by anyone of even very modest natural capability. They are distributed lavishly in exchange for services to the Cathedral, even of the most nominal kind. One need not rise to a position of special prestige within the academy, media, or state bureaucracy to enjoy a complacent sense of spiritual superiority, it suffices merely to identify with the Elect. Linking this (again) is irresistible. When you feel entitled — as a white person — to denounce white people in general without the slightest concern that such derision might be mistaken for self-criticism, you are not socially positioned as a revolutionary, but as a degenerate aristocrat. Your assumption of impregnable moral and social advantage is so great that it has become entirely invisible to itself.

NRx is formalist. Insofar as it obsesses on questions of aristocratic hierarchy — and this is far from a prevailing syndrome — it does to in order to draw attention to the conservation of social rank even (if not quite especially) in those social orders which most tediously flaunt their demotist credentials. Those reiterating moron bite #1 are unlikely to be the new nobles, but more probably low-grade flunkies, who nevertheless esteem themselves through the spiritual bond with their (academic and media) masters. In other words, they are scum posing as members of an aristocracy. Their facility at projection is remarkable.

October 2, 2014admin No Comments »
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Ebola Links

Don’t be alarmed: “Ebola now has its first diagnosis in the U.S., and while concerning, it’s not entirely surprising. Given how interconnected our world is, the CDC has long said that it’s possible Ebola could make it here, though it’s unlikely it would spread widely. Here’s what you need to know …” (Well, maybe just a little alarmed. (Or …))

Ezra Klein is on my unbelievably annoying people list, but he was only a kid when he got there, and this (interview) is really good work. Some additional recent articles, in escalating order of panic, plus some geopolitical complication.

EbolaChan02

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October 1, 2014admin 13 Comments »
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Quote note (#114)

Scott Alexander makes a striking observation:

… take creationists. According to Gallup polls, about 46% of Americans are creationists. Not just in the sense of believing God helped guide evolution. I mean they think evolution is a vile atheist lie and God created humans exactly as they exist right now. That’s half the country.

And I don’t have a single one of those people in my social circle. It’s not because I’m deliberately avoiding them; I’m pretty live-and-let-live politically, I wouldn’t ostracize someone just for some weird beliefs. And yet, even though I probably know about a hundred fifty people, I am pretty confident that not one of them is creationist. Odds of this happening by chance? 1/2^150 = 1/10^45 = approximately the chance of picking a particular atom if you are randomly selecting among all the atoms on Earth.

(The entire — long — post is fascinating. One of SA’s all-time greats.)

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October 1, 2014admin 29 Comments »
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The Network

(I can’t get enough of this stuff.)

October 1, 2014admin 3 Comments »
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Quote note (#113)

Elon Musk (in conversation with Ross Andersen) ponders upon the Fermi Paradox:

We might think of ourselves as nature’s pinnacle, the inevitable endpoint of evolution, but beings like us could be too rare to ever encounter one another. Or we could be the ultimate cosmic outliers, lone minds in a Universe that stretches to infinity.

Musk has a more sinister theory. ‘The absence of any noticeable life may be an argument in favour of us being in a simulation,’ he told me. ‘Like when you’re playing an adventure game, and you can see the stars in the background, but you can’t ever get there. If it’s not a simulation, then maybe we’re in a lab and there’s some advanced alien civilisation that’s just watching how we develop, out of curiosity, like mould in a petri dish.’ Musk flipped through a few more possibilities, each packing a deeper existential chill than the last, until finally he came around to the import of it all. ‘If you look at our current technology level, something strange has to happen to civilisations, and I mean strange in a bad way,’ he said. ‘And it could be that there are a whole lot of dead, one-planet civilisations.’

September 30, 2014admin 15 Comments »
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The Inhumanity

NIO found something fascinating. It’s called a Civil Rights CAPTCHA. The idea is to filter spam-bots by posing an ideological question that functions as a test of humanity. The implications are truly immense.

The fecundity of Alan Turing’s Imitation Game thought-experiment has already been remarkable. It has an even more extraordinary future. The Civil Rights CAPTCHA (henceforth ‘CRC’) adds an innovative twist. Rather than defining the ‘human’ as a natural kind, about which subsequent political questions can arise, it is now tacitly identified with an ideological stance. Reciprocally, the inhuman is tacitly conceived as an engine of incorrect opinion.

Even the narrow technical issues are suggestive. Firstly, the role of the spam-bot as primary Turing test-subject is an unanticipated development meriting minute attention. It points to the marginality of formal AI programs, relative to spontaneously emergent techno-commercial processes (whose drivers are entirely contingent in respect to the goals of theoretical machine-intelligence research). Due to evolving spam-onslaught, many billions — perhaps already trillions? — of imitation games are played out every day.

Spam is a type of dynamically-adaptive infection, locked in an arms race with digital immune systems. Its goals are classically memetic. It ‘seeks’ only to spread (while replicating effective strategies in consequence). Clearly, the bulwarks of visual pattern-recognition competence are already crumbling. As a technical solution to the spam problem, CRC makes the bet that tactical retreat into the redoubt of higher-level (attitudinal-emotional) psychology offers superior defensive prospects. Robots are expected to find humane opinion hard.

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September 30, 2014admin 20 Comments »
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Hyper-Racism

While this blog generally seeks to spread dismay whenever the opportunity arises, it cannot pretend to a huge obsession with what might be described as ordinary racism. When perusing the thought-crimes of the mainstream racist community, it is continually afflicted by a sense of overwhelming unreality. This is not (of course), because races do not exist, or do not differ significantly, or … whatever. The most politically incorrect cognitive position on almost every point of this kind is reliably closer to reality than its more socially-convenient and comforting alternatives.

The problem with ordinary racism is its utter incomprehension of the near future. Not only will capabilities for genomic manipulation dissolve biological identity into techno-commercial processes of yet-incomprehensible radicality, but also … other things.

First, a sketch of the existing racism-antiracism contention in its commonplace or dominant form. The antiracist, or universal humanist position — when extracted from its most idiotic social-constructivist and hypocritical alt-racist expressions — amounts to a program for global genetic pooling. Cultural barriers to the Utopian vision of a unitary ‘human’ gene pool, stirred with increasing ardor into homogeneous intermixture, are deplored as atavistic obstructions to the realization of a true, common humanity. Races will not exist once they are reduced, by practical politics and libidinal indiscriminacy, into relics of contingent historical partition. In contrast, racial identitarianism envisages a conservation of (comparative) genetic isolation, generally determined by boundaries corresponding to conspicuous phenotypic variation. It is race realist, in that it admits to seeing what everyone does in fact see — which is to say consistent patterns of striking, correlated, multi-dimensional variety between human populations (or sub-species). Its unrealism lies in its projections.

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September 29, 2014admin 51 Comments »
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Chaos Patch (#29)

(Weekly open thread, and stuff)

The Hong Kong situation is a nightmare. This tweet gets it right:

Soap Jackal is putting together a Cameralism reading list, so far (that I’ve seen) it includes:
(1) Mercantilism Re-Imagined (essay collection)
(2) The Cameralists: The Pioneers of German Social Polity (Albion W Small)
(3)Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought (Murray N. Rothbard)

Neoreaction @ 8chan, and 8chan @ the Encyclopedia Dramatica. (XS is still reeling from the sudden intelligence is explosion the seems to have taken place in the reactopunk net.) The fact it all seem to have followed upon a black op. makes the situation especially exquisite. Predictable response: More beatings necessary. (Free Northener is on it. NIO urges moderation. Anarcho-Papist tries to stay out, fails.)

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September 28, 2014admin 35 Comments »
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Open Secret

NRx has been accused, by its friends more than its enemies, of talking about itself too much. Here XS is, doing that again, not only stuck in ‘meta’ but determinedly pushing ever deeper in. There are some easily communicable reasons for that — an attachment to methodical nonlinearity perhaps foremost among them — and then there are cryptic drivers or attachments, unsuited to immediate publicization. These latter are many (even Legion). It is the firm assertion of this blog that Neoreaction is intrinsically arcane.

We do not talk very much about Leo Strauss. Once again, there are some obvious reasons for this, but also others.

Steve Sailer’s recent Takimag article on Strauss makes for a convenient introduction, because — despite its light touch — it moves a number of issues into place. The constellation of voices is complex from the start. There is the (now notorious) ‘Neo-Conservatism’ of Strauss and his disciples, or manipulators, and the other conservatism of Sailer, each working to manage, openly and in secret, its own peculiar mix of public statement and discretion. Out beyond them — because even the shadowiest figures have further shadows — are more alien, scarcely perceptible shapes.

Sailer’s article is typically smart, but also deliberately crude. It glosses the Straussian idea of esoteric writing as “talking out of both sides of your mouth” — as if hermetic traditionalism were reducible to a lucid political strategy, or simple conspiracy — to ‘Illuminism’, politically conceived. In the wake of its Neo-Con trauma, conservatism has little patience for “secret decoder rings”. Yet, despite his aversion to the recent workings of inner-circle ‘conservative’ sophisticates, Sailer does not let his distaste lure him into stupidity:

We haven’t heard much about Straussianism lately due to the unfortunate series of events in Iraq that befell the best-laid plans of the sages. But that doesn’t mean that Strauss was necessarily wrong about the ancients. And that has interesting implications for how we should read current works.

As the approaching 20th anniversary of the publication of The Bell Curve reminds us, the best minds of our age have reasons for being less than wholly frank.

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September 27, 2014admin 40 Comments »
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Quote note (#112)

Some Horror Night samples from the Old Master:

The first Book proposes, first in brief, the whole subject, Man’s disobedience, and the loss thereupon of Paradise wherein he was placed: Then touches the prime cause of his Fall, the Serpent, or rather Satan in the serpent; who, revolting from God, and drawing to his side many legions of Angels, was, by the command of God, driven out of Heaven, with all his crew, into the great deep. Which action passed over, the Poem hastens into the midst of things, presenting Satan with his Angels now falling into Hell described here, not in the center (for Heaven and Earth may be supposed as yet not made, certainly not yet accursed,) but in a place of utter darkness, fitliest called Chaos …
— PL I The Argument

… who shall tempt with wandering feet
The dark, unbottomed, infinite Abyss,
And through the palpable obscure find out
His uncouth way, or spread his airy flight,
Upborne with indefatigable wings
Over the vast abrupt …

— PL II 404-9

Which way I fly is Hell; myself am Hell;
And, in the lowest deep, a lower deep
Still threatening to devour me opens wide,
To which the Hell I suffer seems a Heaven
.
— PL IV 75-8

And on Milton’s blindness, a key unlocking the gates to abysmal depths of visionary accomplishment:

… Thus with the year
Seasons return; but not to me returns
Day, or the sweet approach of even or morn,
Or sight of vernal bloom, or summer’s rose,
Or flocks, or herds, or human face divine;
But cloud instead, and ever-during dark
Surrounds me, from the cheerful ways of men
Cut off, and for the book of knowledge fair
Presented with a universal blank
Of nature’s works to me expung’d and ras’d,
And wisdom at one entrance quite shut out.
So much the rather thou, celestial Light,
Shine inward, and the mind through all her powers
Irradiate; there plant eyes, all mist from thence
Purge and disperse, that I may see and tell
Of things invisible to mortal sight.

— PL III 40-55

September 26, 2014admin 11 Comments »
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