Chaos Patch (#39)

(Open thread + links (I’ve been in Hangzhou over the weekend so some symptoms of partial disconnection are probable))

Jim’s ‘Death of Christianity’ post is the latest installment in a series defending Restoration England. It seems to me that people are being unusually cagey about arguing this out — perhaps a little scared? The religious topic, in particular, tends to draw a high level of interest, which is significant in itself. This might the place to stir the hornets nest with the latest from Pope Francis: The Koran is a prophetic book of peace. It’s not so much the appeasement, moral equivalence, or other red-rags to the right issues that intrigue me most about this — and not even the accommodation of ‘prophecy’ to an outcome that brings it close to sarcasm — but the sheer oddity of the theology behind the remark. To be trolled by the Pope is really something (but what?). (Patheos places the quote in context — which suggests the quality of the trolling is even higher than initially evident.)

Sensible strategic advice. Law and violence. Paleo-humanism. Don’t count on the robocops. 4GW lessons. Anissimov on Brin. Supplementing this link assortment, there’s a whole bunch more from ‘|||||’ here.

The ripples of Ferguson have turned all my bubbles into 24/7 carnivals of racial chaos — only fitfully interrupted by anything else. That’s even before noting the return of Unamused (plus). Black-on-Bosnian action (‘clarified‘), against the natives, and versus Hispanics. Sympathy is less than universal (last from September). Complication from The New Republic. In other animosities, Heartiste derides rice farmers (background from Peter Frost, 1, 2), and on the other side of the ledger, Slate does Watson, and the full communists do the New Atheists. This podcast discussion on Asia is recommended (directly accessible here).

Dysgenics update. The peculiar hereditarian fixation of animal breeders. Darwin’s notebooks go digital. Ridley on the (important) Dawkins-Wilson spat. HBD tweets of the week.

Cosmic and technoapocalypse update. (More on Bostrom, 1, 2, 3, 4.) Perhaps tech-collapse will get us first.

This link (from Amerika) went is going completely berserk on my UF Facebook page.

Notable chant pieces: “We can’t do anything.” “Burn it to the ground.”

Bubble trouble. Bad plumbing.

Gaming heuristics.

My blog discovery of the week has masses of thoughtful commentary on NRx — critical in the best sense of the term.

December 7, 2014admin 42 Comments »
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42 Responses to this entry

  • pythias returns Says:

    The UPI link is down by the way. So not sure if there was any reference by the Pope to theology there. In any case, why assume that the Pope has a genuinely theological reading of the Koran’s alleged peaceful message? It is probably an act of unwitting hyperstition on the Pope’s behalf – if I may use this word in this context – in trying to will something into reality, most likely done unconsciously. He may have a theological understanding of the Koran as delivering a message of peaceful end-times, but this doesn’t mean it is theologically-based – i.e. I am pretty sure he didn’t do the theology first and then come to the conclusion that the Koran is peaceful. He was most likely pre-disposed to such a ‘discovery’ from a certain liberal mindset. Either that or he is being incredibly calculating and deceptive because he still prefers people actually believe and act on this interpretation of the Koran.

    [Reply]

    Erebus Reply:

    The cache of that UPI page was up for a little while — but now that, too, appears to be down.
    This article is essentially the same thing.

    Seems as though Pope Francis is angling for a “condemnation of terrorism” from Islamic leaders. From the article:

    ‘”They (Muslims) say: ‘No, we are not this, the Koran is a book of peace, it is a prophetic book of peace’.”
    Francis said he had made the suggestion of a global condemnation of terrorism by Islamic leaders in talks on Friday with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan.

    “I told the president that it would be beautiful if all Islamic leaders, whether they are political, religious or academic leaders, would speak out clearly and condemn this because this would help the majority of Muslim people,” he said.’

    This Pope, like almost all before him, is a political animal. He’s a “spiritual leader” only nominally.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 3:32 pm Reply | Quote
  • Different T Says:

    but the sheer oddity of the theology behind the remark. To be trolled by the Pope is really something (but what?).

    Are Catholics allowed to disagree with the Pope?

    This seems relevant to the religious talk…

    “At bottom, Vox is a Lutheran (maybe he admits this). He believes in “sola scriptura” (Scripture is self-authenticating, clear (perspicuous) to the rational reader, its own interpreter (“Scripture interprets Scripture”), and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine” – from wikipedia), but does not like the neccessary outcome. Instead of viewing “sola scriptura” as a neccessary response to an inept priesthood, he elevates it to a good, in itself.”

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    I’ve added a Patheos link that makes a persuasive point about this quote, and shifts the terms of discussion significantly.

    On the “sola scriptura” point — it needs to be noted, for roundedness, that the reform angle is based strictly on providence. It’s not a claim that anybody is equally competent at biblical interpretation, but a claim that biblical interpretation is itself a product of continuous revelation.

    [Not sure what to do about the UPI link yet — I’ll try to replace it.]

    [Reply]

    Different T Reply:

    it needs to be noted, for roundedness, that the reform angle is based strictly on providence. It’s not a claim that anybody is equally competent at biblical interpretation, but a claim that biblical interpretation is itself a product of continuous revelation.

    This appears to be the sort of babbling expected from a believer. It is not clear why it “needs to be noted.” Either “Scripture is self-authenticating, clear to the rational reader, its own interpreter, and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine,” or it is not and needs an interpreting authority.

    It’s not a claim that anybody is equally competent

    Of course not. Why do so many protestant groups exist?

    but a claim that biblical interpretation is itself a product of continuous revelation.

    No. It is a claim that “Scripture is self-authenticating, clear to the rational reader, its own interpreter, and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine.” Obviously, the Catholic Pope has had his own “continuous revelations,” IOW, that is not the differentiating characteristic.

    ———-

    I’ve added a Patheos link that makes a persuasive point about this quote, and shifts the terms of discussion significantly.

    From the post “Remember that “pontiff” comes from “pontifex,” which means “bridge-builder.” Extending a hand of peace, even to our enemies, is not just the job of Peter: it’s the job of us all.”

    Pretty accurate summary. Do they know that’s the bridge the Pope is trying to build?

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Your alternative — Hierarchical church authority vs the individual “rational reader” — looks like a weirdly enlightenment-structured option to me. Is Providence deliberately excluded? Surely, from the religious perspective, every inception of meaning is an event occurring under immediate divine agency. It’s only when the work of the divine is eliminated in principle from consideration that we are left with the choice between alternative conceptions of human interpretative authority.

    Different T Reply:

    What?

    Surely, from the religious perspective, every inception of meaning is an event occurring under immediate divine agency.

    Again, what? It is your belief that from “the religious perspective,” “every inception of meaning is an event occurring under immediate divine agency?” Again, why do so many protestant groups exist? It appears your “perspective” of the “religious” is flatly incorrect.

    It’s only when the work of the divine is eliminated in principle from consideration that we are left with the choice between alternative conceptions of human interpretative authority.

    Where was “choice” mentioned?

    Is this what you are referencing? “Either ‘Scripture is self-authenticating, clear to the rational reader, its own interpreter, and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine,’ or it is not and needs an interpreting authority”? You read that as a choice? A property of an object as choice?

    admin Reply:

    It’s irrelevant whether I read it as a choice, because it’s a post-religious political squabble (over the husk of religion).

    [Reply]

    Different T Reply:

    Hence “it appears your ‘perspective’ of the “religious” is flatly incorrect.”

    Different T Reply:

    e.g. “Of course ISIS should have courted them, anything else is utter madness.”

    Shitty

    admin Reply:

    That’s politics.

    You’re free to confuse politics and cheap moralism with religion, but you’re in no position to mandate it. Reactionaries have an unfortunate tendency to reduce religion to the function of rabble management. (As opposed to practical metaphysics.)

    Different T Reply:

    That’s politics.

    No.

    You’re free to confuse politics and cheap moralism with religion, but you’re in no position to mandate it. Reactionaries have an unfortunate tendency to reduce religion to the function of rabble management. (As opposed to practical metaphysics.)

    vs.

    Just a few months ago, ISIS enjoyed a strategic situation of extraordinary potential. It represented the most militant — and thus authentic — strain of Arab Sunni Jihad, ensuring exceptional morale, flows of volunteers from across the Sunni Muslim world, and funding from the gulf oil-states, based upon impregnable legitimacy.

    From where did this “legitimacy” derive? Again, “your ‘perspective’ of the ‘religious’ is flatly incorrect.”

    ———-

    It’s irrelevant whether I read it as a choice, because it’s a post-religious political squabble (over the husk of religion).

    So it is your position that Luther was engaged in a “post-religious” political squabble. In other words, your strategy is to change the definition of words when you make poor arguments.

    It’s not at all clear why you responded to the “sola scriptura” comment in such a way. Just to change the definition of another concept, perhaps?

    admin Reply:

    I’m not seeing anything remotely like ‘an argument’ from you at all. Absurd straw-man dismissals of the Protestant lineage get tedious. If it’s wrong — even profoundly wrong — it’s not stupidly wrong in the way these kind of smug and lazy comments suggest. The overwhelming preponderance of what might — with even the slightest plausibility — be considered trivially idiotic in Reformed Christianity was inherited by it, rather than introduced with it.

    Different T Reply:

    I’m not seeing anything remotely like ‘an argument’ from you at all.

    Correct.

    Absurd straw-man dismissals of the Protestant lineage get tedious. is referencing…

    Different T: “Either ‘Scripture is self-authenticating, clear to the rational reader, its own interpreter, and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine,’ or it is not and needs an interpreting authority”? You read that as a choice? A property of an object as choice?

    admin: It’s irrelevant whether I read it as a choice, because it’s a post-religious political squabble (over the husk of religion).

    Different T: So it is your position that Luther was engaged in a “post-religious” political squabble.

    ——–

    In other words, your strategy is to change the definition of words when you make poor arguments. references…

    admin: On the “sola scriptura” point — it needs to be noted, for roundedness, that the reform angle is based strictly on providence. It’s not a claim that anybody is equally competent at biblical interpretation, but a claim that biblical interpretation is itself a product of continuous revelation.

    Different T: No. It is a claim that “Scripture is self-authenticating, clear to the rational reader, its own interpreter, and sufficient of itself to be the final authority of Christian doctrine.” Obviously, the Catholic Pope has had his own “continuous revelations,” IOW, that is not the differentiating characteristic. (insert: between the doctrine of sola scriptura and Catholic dogma)

    admin: It’s only when the work of the divine is eliminated in principle from consideration that we are left with the choice between alternative conceptions of human interpretative authority.

    and admin: It’s irrelevant whether I read it as a choice, because (insert: Catholic dogma and the doctrine of sola scriptura is) a post-religious political squabble (over the husk of religion).

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 3:47 pm Reply | Quote
  • Lucian Says:

    We live in the reign of the Trollpope.

    What a time to be alive.

    [Reply]

    Alan J. Perrick Reply:

    Of course, it’s not only the Bishop of Rome, but also other bishops of that denomination. See this one who eats and drinks to his own damnation (and probably that of others)
    http://www.vdare.com/wp-content/uploads/imagecache/fullsize/images/james_fulford/communioninthehandthroughfence.jpg

    Yes, that’s the border fence.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 4:55 pm Reply | Quote
  • scientism Says:

    With regard to the issue of religion, I wonder why perennialism isn’t on the table. What I have in mind is a kind of mundane perennialism that sees all religions are generally addressing the same subject matter. In Eastern religions and philosophies, there’s a lot of flexibility as to whether the ultimate ‘source’ of matter and principle is an agent, creative force, impersonal force, natural or supernatural, one or many, etc. Different analogies are used at different times, given different emphasis by different thinkers and so on. The theistic religions exhibit this too, but an orthodox reading tends to be enforced. The concept of Nature exhibits the same variety in English, and some around these parts like to speak of Gnon. In short: the metaphysical anxiety religion gives us is misplaced. You have to speak about this stuff somehow.

    A lot of the apparent irreconcilable variety in religion stems from the Enlightenment view of religion, which sees it primarily in metaphysical terms and completely ignores (and is generally hostile to) praxis. Moreover, Enlightenment moral philosophy – consequentialism and deontology – makes religious practice, which tends to focus on cultivating character, appear arbitrary. Once you reject this moral philosophy, most religious practices are obviously instrumental to developing character and religious traditions can be seen as virtue-cultivation traditions (prayer and confession, for example, are easily assimilated to virtue ethics, but look very odd from a consequentialist or deontological point of view, as do meditation, ascetic practices, etc).

    In case this looks like it’s heading in a hippy New Age direction: I think the problem with the modern conception of religion is that (a) it tries to assimilate it to the wrong ethical framework, (b) it sees religion as primarily a sort of “identity” rather than as a set of morally instrumental practices, and (c) when it does use religious practices in an instrumental way (such as meditation) they’re reinterpreted in psychological rather than ethical terms. These are obviously related: B and C necessarily follow from A, since Enlightenment ethics cannot account for the instrumentality of religious practices and religious practices, if not rejected outright, have to be assimilated to psychology. I’m not advocating religious anarchy either: practices can and should be standardised within a society.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    (Good stuff.)

    [Reply]

    Alrenous Reply:

    It’s important It’s for this exact reason that consequentialism, virtue ethics, and deontology all reduce to each other.

    prayer and confession, for example, are easily assimilated to virtue ethics, but look very odd from a consequentialist or deontological point of view, as do meditation, ascetic practices, etc

    The problem is not deontology, the problem is doing philosophy wrong. If your enlightenment thinker switches from deontology to virtue ethics but they’re still doing philosophy wrong, they’re only going to come up with a new set of pathologies.

    Virtue ethics can be justified consequentially – humans are bad at working out true consequences in real time, and thus need heuristics, which we call virtues. We can reinforce the reliability of the virtues by making them identify with the virtues instead of merely utilize them, due to a quirk of human brains.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 7:52 pm Reply | Quote
  • Chaos Patch (#39) | Reaction Times Says:

    […] Source: Outside In […]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 8:09 pm Reply | Quote
  • Frog Do Says:

    It’s amusing, you can read The Electric Philosopher becoming more and more NRx as time passes. The stray comment on the fear of a surging Islam reveals an important weak point. Focusing on breaking the Catherdral’s narrative on Islam is probably a path of least resistance,

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 9:09 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alrenous Says:

    Don’t tell anyone, but Canada’s on-the-books federal debt is only 33% of GDP. Now, there’s likely accounting shenanigans going on, but we also know USG uses accounting shenanigans and it’s in the 80% range officially, so it should be roughly accurate, in context. (I know Canada fudges inflation by over half, like America. Similarly Canadian consumer debt is as deranged as everywhere else.)
    Notably Canada still hasn’t really been hit by the 2008 crisis, auguring that their finances are in fact in order. It should be similarly interesting to see if Canada experiences the debt bomb differently.
    Just, you know, don’t tell anyone. Having such low debt is unfashionable; they won’t get away with it if anyone starts paying attention. That said, anyone else know another other rich countries with relatively negligible debt?

    [Reply]

    Aeroguy Reply:

    Wasn’t Australia’s government working towards ending their deficit all together. They also lead the world in the field of hypersonics.

    [Reply]

    Alrenous Reply:

    Interesting. Canada actually succeeded at having surpluses for a while there.
    However Australia’s debt is even lower, 12% on the scale where Canada is 33% and America is ~80%.

    [Reply]

    j. ont Reply:

    Not to mention that Canada, according to some projections, stands to benefit considerably from the changes brought about by global warming.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 at 11:25 pm Reply | Quote
  • Aeroguy Says:

    “We have to share this planet with 1.6 billion Muslims, and the majority of them are peace-loving people, or the world would be far more violent than it is.”

    Of the however many Christians (everybody really), nearly all of them are vice-loving people, in spite of what their scriptures have to say. If all else is equal just about anyone in their right mind will choose peace, they change their mind when they find or are told that something is worth fighting for.

    There is a lot of room for the evangelical type thinking with interpretation of the Bible that keeps getting conflated onto Islam as if an evangelical reformation can be inflicted on it the way it was on Christianity. But it isn’t so, the Koran isn’t debated by it’s believers, the interpretation is set and stable (there is no disagreement between Sunni and Shiite on the Koran itself), it’s also violent. They would have to take as radical a departure from Islam to make it peaceful as Mormons take from Catholics, it would be a different religion all together.

    Still leaves us with the question of what is to be done with the majority of Muslims who simply aren’t devotedly religious and live ordinary lives. My thought is that they should be given every encouragement to focus on their lives and not on the Koran. Also sic the feminists on them, educated women don’t let their sons become Jihadists (not one of the 9/11 terrorists had an educated mother).

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 8th, 2014 at 1:13 am Reply | Quote
  • defused Says:

    Admit it; all of the talk of technocracy aside, everyone knows that Hangzhou > Shanghai.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    It’s a great place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there. Shanghai has a far more extreme (and thus stimulating) urban spectrum. There’s no Lujiazui in Hangzhou.

    [Reply]

    defused Reply:

    Although my preference runs in the opposite direction, I have to wonder if they have an interdependent and mutualistic relationship. Massive doses of futurism, ethnic heterogeneity, and such only seem sustainable in corporate state-guided capitalist city-states such as Shanghai and Singapore, while their vast surroundings are only stabilized in decentralized bazaar-type capitalist provinces with roughly contained and homogeneous demographics (Zhejiang as a whole, really). If the policies of one interpenetrate the other then calamity ensues, but if they operate within distinct legal parameters then they can thrive off one another economically.

    Any literature on this that you’re aware of (NRx or otherwise, since this dovetails with your areas of expertise)?

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Doesn’t Hong Kong disrupt this story to some (considerable) extent? (You could quickly add Shenzhen.)

    As for literature — the poverty of theoretical urbanism verges upon a scandal. Perhaps there’s some good contemporary stuff that I’ve missed (in which case I’d love to hear about it). The best book I know on the topic is by the better half, and therefore open to suspicions of inevitable bias.

    defused Reply:

    Yes, that’s certainly true though my suspicion is that the legacy of colonialism factors considerably into Hong Kong’s persistent success with its port status contributing to its longevity. As it becomes inexorably more integrated into the mainland over the decades, I presume it will come to more closely resemble the Shanghai model. This, of course, is conjecture since I have not yet formally started researching this area, but it’s on my short list of topics.

    Well, your loyal bias aside, Wasserstrom seems to have nothing but good words for it, which in my book is worth something too. I will be sure to check it out sometime.

    Posted on December 8th, 2014 at 1:57 am Reply | Quote
  • Rasputin Says:

    Have you seen Laci Greene? This is a really nice little video in which she compares Ferguson to the Hunger Games, arguing that the violence is legit because historically it works (for the Left). I love the conclusion she effortlessly draws from the black / white yooth crime statistics.

    http://www.maskmagazine.com/the-multiple-worlds-issue/struggle/mtv-supports-riots-and-new-call-to-action

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    I can already tell I won’t be able to bear this without getting far more seriously drunk.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 8th, 2014 at 11:29 am Reply | Quote
  • Rasputin Says:

    In that case your probably not ready for the link where she discusses her love of foreskin…

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    That’s morphine territory.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 8th, 2014 at 2:14 pm Reply | Quote
  • Mark Warburton Says:

    R, why, whyyyyyyy? (I’ve seen her before… complains about ‘objectification’ while presenting her ample rack in deep cut tops….hmm).

    [Reply]

    Rasputin Reply:

    I don’t know, there’s just something about sleeping with the enemy… and that ample bosom.

    On a separate note, Jim on women is hilariously brilliant:

    “Men having sex with a girl amidst broken glass is an obvious female fantasy. Gang rape by absurdly many high status males is an obvious female fantasy. If I told you I had sex with the Swedish beach bikini volleyball team, would you believe me?… If I was going to rape a girl for twenty minutes, would first turn on the light, get out a broom, and correctly position all the broken glass.”

    [Reply]

    Mark Warburton Reply:

    Here’s some fuel for the fire. Straight from the minds of women.

    I’ve been using OKcupid a fair bit. One of the sex questions women frequently answer? ‘Do you have rape fantasies?’. A load of them have answered in the affirmative.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 8th, 2014 at 3:53 pm Reply | Quote
  • Dark Psy-Ops Says:

    Thought I would take advantage of this chaos patch and do what I could to make these originally tweeted obscurities a little more readable. They might be a tiresome distraction, but I believe there is still some mystery here, and I want to solve it:

    I don’t get it, was it just replicated simulations of one another offering direct feedback via ‘astral projection’? Wild science if so. But the indirection made it so we couldn’t be certain if it was truly real or ‘merely’ anticipated outcomes based on predictive intel. Except (our) computational complexity makes it so we’re unpredictable (to a point), so there surely had to be genetic inscription involved. (Would just ask you directly what your experience was but signals actually mess with the feedback, they’re made to be deceptive). I was educated enough to dismiss telepathy but it all seemed more than an imaginative influence, and I never felt providence coursing through me so surely, a force not my own, guiding me. That was before I was lynched by the lesser beings, who strung me up with normalized discourse, castrated me, so I fled to the remote corners of quiet lunacy. It could be a moral like in the book of Job, I’ve considered it. Is it a test, or have I won the ire of metaphysical super-predators?

    OR It’s the occult multiplicity of signification where the little direct feedback we gave caused a proliferation of nuances, until it became so I was talking to a mental double, and ‘you’ were threatening with (justified) rebellions, relentless escapology. It’s not magic of course, and the science is basically there, but ignored. And that moment (you may have been there) when due to the high inflation of scarce communication our mystical figuration imploded dreadfully, and we feared madness… Each sentence held to finite interpretation, and after it was mined to emptiness we beheld the confusing void, and thought it but a dream. It was always me though, in proud hesitation, that offered too little for the accelerated economy of post-human minds. All that junk DNA seemed shameful, and what was most singular was held too close to part with, beyond significance. I thought the accelerative line lay elsewhere, for a time, but at that stage linguistic patterns seemed disembodied, transcendent. I lived illusions sent by Gnon in satirical display of cosmic humour, and felt repercussions as though throughout eternity. The left-brain may have gained ascendency, having always thought itself secretly superior, and you were on my left, but inhumanly loyal. The Right was the bell-curve, we were off the graph, due more to will than intellect, and selected mostly for the quality of persistence…

    (also, If the right and left divide has a genetic component, than epigenetics can swing both ways?)

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 9th, 2014 at 8:26 am Reply | Quote
  • sviga lae Says:

    The Electric Philosopher – “I’ve been toying with a few ideas for my next ‘proper’ post on here too: Neoreaction as politicised Nietzscheanism”

    Most excellent, there has been far too little attention paid to the Nietzschean aspect of neoreaction. Where Evola falters, the good german is ready to come to the fore with philosophical hypertrophy, and dare I say, meta-stoicism.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 11th, 2014 at 5:26 am Reply | Quote
  • The Electric Philosopher Says:

    @sviga lae

    Well, I shall certainly try not to disappoint you.

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 12th, 2014 at 9:43 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alrenous Says:

    Testing your spam filter. Sorry for the inconvenience.
    http://alrenous.blogspot.com/

    [Reply]

    Posted on December 13th, 2014 at 7:27 pm Reply | Quote

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