17 08 10 - 23:46From Paul:
I enjoyed reading the information on this website (as a web designer, I like the layout as well). You touch several aspects of society that need to be poked and prodded. Here in the US, shit like: emotional politicians, religion, bigotry, and illogical ideologies spread like cancer. Not to mention the population is too large, and it continues to increase (along with the emotional delusions). I've continued to observe and analyze the conservative social norms of society, and as I do so my empathy has corroded. I'm only seventeen years old, and I know I'm not a genius or wiseman. In fact, I'm simply a small speck within the confines of the expanding universe. Due to this, how could I along with others change society? Even just to simply push it into the outer fringe? I know this site contains info on the process behind spreading the truth, but idiots (therefore idiocy) continue to multiply...... Forgive me for my apparent apathy, but I don't see any point in me trying.
We live in a time when idiots rule because idiots are popular and many people benefit from the Invisible Tyrant that is the rule by the tastes of the masses. After all, if you're a cynical manipulator, you really make out like a bandit: you dangle symbols out there, the Crowd lunges for them, and the ensuing mess is not your fault, so you get to keep any money you made. Who are these manipulators? People like you or me, who want good schools, medical and home amenitites for their families.
The only way to reverse this situation is to get enough of the thought leaders -- writers, philosophers, police, teachers, priests and artists -- to agree on some simple ideal of what would be better. When you get 2-5% of a population motivated, and it's mostly people from this group of thought leaders, they can create enough havoc to enforce change. But first they must all agree on the basics of what they want.
We can start with the following basic idea:
There are two basic paths people take in life: either they see the individual as responsible for finding decisions that adapt to reality, or they expect to create a false human reality that then panders to the individual so the individual does not have to change/adapt/strive (and possibly, "lose") in order to be accepted and get their piece of the pie.
While good modern/postmodern trained monkeys are busy deconstructing and other pursuits that separate cause from effect and increase the distance between related concepts in our minds, we can be re-constructing a framework of actual understanding. Don't accept the partial truths; instead, offer up whole truths wherever possible to those who are capable of understanding them. Build the framework for a new culture, and you'll start the overthrow of this sick system.
As painfully slow as this process sounds, it's not -- it's how our system was overthrown. People working together, building critical mass around a meme ("liberty, equality, fraternity") and then a relatively small number of people going crazy nuts with rifles. In addition, develop your entreprenurial spirit and become influential in your community so that people have a reason to listen to you. This is how we make change in an organized society, and anything more direct is usually only good for making a brief media splash before the police snipers take you out.
The way I see it, the US along with other societies, will eat themselves shortly after crumbling down. Although I'm fairly happy as an individual, I can't say that I'm not bothered by the cancerous ways of general leaders & managers. I only fear that my lack of action will be my downfall.....but at the same time I've stopped caring. My peers and I constantly receive those generic motivational speeches, and my contemporaries (99%) fall for the delusions without a hint of critical thought. If we are the future, then the future is the past.
I agree. Past, present and future are a continuum. They create one another and transition between stages. If we look to the past, we can see a record of what has or has not worked, and since humans have not fundamentally changed, we know those designations are still true. So we should pick what works, unless we want to fail. Most people lack the ability to be so reflective; they are basically big bundles of nerves that react to stimulus, and without that external stimulus, they lose direction entirely.
Most people at this point in time are paralyzed by their desire to avoid being wrong. When we start a process of socialization, we begin considering symbols from others as equal to our own thought-tokens, and so they are almost literally "in our heads." As a result, social humiliation becomes one of the greatest fears we have, and we become addicted to some kind of social reward to carry us through. This is what it means to be externalized. Some externalize themselves through PDAs and iPads, but most do it by relying on the opinions of others, emulating their idols, and following perceived social norms (which often are the work of a zealous smaller group and not society at large).
From E.T. Myers:
Your thoughts on the anarcho-primitivism movement, especially as represented by the likes of John Zerzan?
I like John Zerzan, but what I got out of his writings was a confirmation that localization is necessary. I think we need for towns or suburbs to be able to make their own rules, so that in a conservative suburb you might find that homosexuality, premarital sex, drug use and interracial dating are illegal, but in a town a few miles away, total anarchy might rule. I think this is fair because then we see what works. If five years on, the anarchistic town is a wasteland and the conservative town is thriving, we have an answer -- and that's why very few anarchists/liberals will sign up for this plan.
I don't see a point to primitivism beyond understanding the killing effect of luxury. When you create layers between yourself and reality, you become entirely detached. Those layers can be diverse, from the 5000 square foot house to the Mexican gardeners and maids doing work you should do yourself, or even a BMW with comfy suspension. Luxury makes you not give a damn because you're no longer in contact with reality. But primitivism requires we go backward down the ladder of technology and learning, when those are not our problems. The dominance of the Crowd is our problem, and they'll be creating problems whether we all live in mud huts under "anarchy" or not.
Regarding anarchy, it's for morons. On paper, it sounds great -- this big abstraction that seems to encompass every social condition. In reality, it's the anti-civilization. Instead of mastering civilization, you run away from it, and lose the ability to collaborate in an ordered setting. I've worked with many non-profits and all of them face the same problem: if people aren't compelled to do things the right way, they do what's convenient for them, whether that's just what they find fun or just a job half-done. You need money and cops to keep order. Even people I consider enlightened drift away from "do what's right" when you're in a no-rules zone. For this reason I'm really suspicious of anything with "anarcho" attached, although I'm fond of Zerzan's writings and share much in common with him in spirit.
What role would Jesus Christ and the bible play in the reformed Christianity you are proposing?
Jesus: minor prophet, known for his doctrine of forgiveness, re-read as more of a warlike insurgent than friendly Communist.
Bible: let's revisit that Old Testament and see what we can learn from it...
Is there any âcureâ for the belief that every life is sacred?
Not to be flippant, but a good war. When the bodies pile up, and lives are threatened, people drop the whole sanctity of life argument. It's a luxury. In a greater sense, I recommend that everyone study Paul Woodruff's "Reverence" or the Bhagavad-Gita. Part of loving life is being able to fight and kill those who cause problems or are simply of a lesser degree of complexity. That's natural selection, and if we love life, we must respect and uphold that. It needs to become a cultural value, because nothing else will make a firm enough bond -- political ideology doesn't do it, and in the hands of thugs Social Darwinism and natural selection become excuses for stupid brutality like The Holocaust.
If you could bring back one person from the dead, who would you choose?
I'd probably resurrect a great scientific mind and put them to work on today's problems.
If you could vote for any person, living or dead, to be president of the USA, who would you choose?
George Washington. He was a great uniter, and a great pragmatist. He would not hesitate to tackle difficult issues and sever our connections to foreign lands.
In your interview with Metal Crypt, you state that â[t]he A.N.U.S. website will ideally bring people who are sick and tired of society to certain revelations, which they will then apply in their own lives, or will fight with every ounce of their spirit and thus mark themselves forever as a certain type of intellect.â Have there been any examples of the latter thus far?
Yes -- in fact, these are probably our only successes. A number of people come through this site, often professing to hate/fear/scorn it at first, and later finding in it some wisdom and more importantly, a direction with a reading list attached. These then go on to have more life experiences and carry these revelations with them. Because they had something vital coming into the experience -- namely, honesty and bravery -- they tend to be shaped by their wisdom and stand out from the crowd as not unique/different but realistic/awakened. As a result, they often find the old intellectual excuses and social diversions are no longer sustaining them in denial, and are forced to keep pushing themselves. It's a harder path than most choose, but not as much harder as many suppose. I stay in touch with as many of these as I can, because I consider them the foundations of whatever will rise out of the third world remnants of the industrialized world.
Do you plan to engage in any formal, oral debates in the future, if you have not already done so? Do you think such debates would go a long way in giving A.N.U.S. more publicity?
I don't think such debates would be effective because the audience at large both (a) has no clue what a clear argument is, or when a speaker is committing a huge fallacy and (b) think that they do know this difference, so tend to favor the more dramatic party in any argument or the one whose view is closest to views they already hold. As a result, writing longer pieces of text -- which baffle these people -- is a more effective way to reach those who can understand and have open minds toward even views that other people(tm) tell them are closed-minded.
What are the five most beautiful books you've ever read?
Who doesn't love a reading list? You'll find this one somewhat redundant:
1. Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
2. The Iliad & Odyssey
3. The Aeneid
4. Tender is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald
5. A sentimental journey, Lawrence Stern
If you became the last person in the world tomorrow, how would you live the rest of your life?
I would shift efforts from explaining our existing situation to humans, and instead describe human history and a diagnosis of our problems and triumphs so that it could be encoded in a relatively neutral form and broadcast to (potentially, but not certaintly, extant) alien civilizations. I'd create the equivalent of the Voyager gold disc with as much human learning and history as possible.