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Joe Biden’s victory marks a return to Enlightenment principles of science and rationality, from which it was only temporarily diverted by the dark forces of populist reaction and retrogression represented by Donald Trump.

It is good that the US is not an obscurantist theocracy such as Iran that exalts its political leaders into the ranks of sainthood.

 

 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    Commenting rules. Please note that anonymous comments are not allowed.

  2. You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.

    • Agree: Svevlad
    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
    @128


    You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.
     
    Where's Max Zorin when you really need him?

    https://youtu.be/RCzC3ZeMxws

    Replies: @Mr. Hack, @showmethereal

  3. How many of you can identify the twelve deceased Iranians/Shia? Steve Sailer has written obituaries for all four Americans, so they are easy to identify.

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Blinky Bill


    they are easy to identify.
     
    I believe that Death mistook John Lewis for Elijah Cummings, and then months later rectified his mistake, without even knowing, when it was Lewis' time.

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

    , @Yevardian
    @Blinky Bill

    I noticed you seem to have a thing against Steve Sailer. I never found him at all interesting anyway, but I have seen quite a few people turn on him recently, for whatever reason. To me he seems to be posting the same snarky alt-lite stuff for the ADHD crowd (not that there's anything wrong with that) he always has.

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

    , @yakushimaru
    @Blinky Bill

    I know one of the black men is e.e. cummings. :-p

    And Khomeni is the rightmost one.

    , @yakushimaru
    @Blinky Bill

    I know one of the black men is e.e. cummings. :-p

    And Khomeni is the rightmost one.

  4. Joe Biden’s victory marks

    Why “neoliberalism”, when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word “liberal” (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone’s views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore “liberalism” today, refers to what in a 20th century was “centre-left” ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology “neoliberal” was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate “neoliberal” concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against “neoliberal” views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    @Dmitry


    Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.
     
    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    The libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that's why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with 'abolish money' and 'let's die to get a few virgins' in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme. As long as modern conservatism and nationalism are polluted by the sociopathic libertarian ideas, they will keep on failing when confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Grahamsno(G64), @Mark G.

    , @TG
    @Dmitry

    I'm sorry, I must seriously disagree. Modern 'liberals' are in no way 'center left,' they are extreme far-right anti-worker pro-super rich extremists.

    Sure, they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. 'The poor, they have no bread? Then let them eat diversity!'

    Ignoring social frippery like transgender bathrooms, what are modern 'center left' liberals in favor of? (And I mean REALLY in favor of, not paying lip service to during a campaign).

    - A bankruptcy law that turns regular workers into lifetime debt slaves (the founders of this republic, no liberals they, did not believe in debtors prisons and very much felt that there should be a mechanism for non-rich people to discharge unsayable debts).
    - A privatized health care system that costs about double what any other industrial health care system does, while the new innovation of 'surprise medical billing' is driving even people with 'good' (i.e., expensive) insurance into poverty.
    - Spending trillions of dollars on endless winless foreign wars that serve to benefit only wealthy defense contractors (and I suppose also Israel).
    - An open borders immigration system that pushes wages down and rents and profits up. No, this is not 'liberal' (check out: FDR), this is a far-right cheap-labor-uber-alles policy, always has been always will be.
    - Trillions of dollars in bailouts and subsidies for the super rich and Wall Street (remember: Obama after he won the election?). Meanwhile the real economy is starved of capital.
    - An education system bloated out of control, driven by subsidized profits to the big banks, driving a generation into lifetime slavery. It really doesn't cost that much to actually teach people, most industrialized countries manage this feat with little direct cost to the students.
    - 'private-public partnerships' where the public puts up the cash, and takes all the risk, and wealthy investors are guaranteed a profit regardless of how it turns out. A nice deal if you can get it! (No, YOU can't).
    I could go on. Bottom line: yes indeed, Obama and Biden ('The Senator from Mastercard') etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do, and then talk pretty.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Dmitry

    , @Daniel Chieh
    @Dmitry

    Ron, can we have an Autism tag added to Agree/Disagree/Etc?

    , @Anatoly Karlin
    @Dmitry

    https://i.imgur.com/WP4483u.jpg

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @Yevardian
    @Dmitry

    Biden would still be considered centre-right in any Western country just a decade or two ago. As I recall his running mate Kamala Harris' husband pursued some vicious anti-labour legislation against uber drivers, drop the identity politics garbage and there's no conceivable way most Democrat politicians could be considered at all 'left'.

  5. Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    • Agree: Nodwink
    • Thanks: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.
     
    That would depend on what your definition of 'Now' is. It would seem that accepting death is a more generic concept than something purely tied to religion. But you are on to something.

    We are not entering a new age of Enlightenment, that way of thinking is too far in the past. We are living in an age of peak liberalism and the liberals have just reasserted their dominance. If you want to be more precise, we are living in the age of Secular Judaism that almost perfectly overlaps with what is described as liberal these days. NY Times has been the voice of Secular Judaism ideology for generations and they have slowly expanded and took over all of the American society and are on their way to spread around the world. They do use nice fonts.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @mal
    @AaronB


    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.
     
    Yea I don't know about immortality but everyone who is reading this (even if you are a dog or other small animal) is around 4 billion years old. With probably at least few hundred million years left on the clock. (Planet will start acting funny after that).

    Your current form doesn't really matter all that much, what matters is the genetic material you are carrying and the evolutionary process by which it gets expressed and propagates. We are all derived from the Last Universal Common Ancestor and then ran through different environments to generate solutions to the adaptation problem.

    Religions are simply fairy tales that attempt to capture this reality however imperfectly (Hindus with reincarnation stuff, Abrahamic religions with common point of origin).

    Therefore, anybody who takes the long view will come off sounding a bit religious. Transhumanists take the longer view, so yea, there will be some of that vibe going on.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption
     
    This is more of a calvinist heresy, than how Christians traditionally thought. Christs kingdom is not of this world, its beyond this fallen world, but every Christiam can by faith and through good works enter to that everlasting and perfect kingdom. But I have already once mentioned this to you.

    People of the Middle Ages even believed that their world is slowly dying and decaying, that they were born when the world was old. It was totally different view of progress than that of englightenment philosophers.

    What sins men have made that such gross heresy as calvinism could rise and live? And that many even now think that its mistaken and deluded beliefs are somehow normative in Christianity.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @advancedatheist
    @AaronB


    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.
     
    When a technology can actually keep you from dying, we don't call it a "religion." We call it something more like "effective health care."

    Replies: @Kent Nationalist

    , @Dieter Kief
    @AaronB

    This down in the blockquote does not work (is not free of performative self-contradiction) because there is no such a thing as living for the moment without having a philosophy (= a plan to do so) in the first place.


    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.
     
    I could have also put it this way: Jean-Jacques Rousseau's ideas were not naive (= natural), but rather - elaborated results of a long line of predecessors in the European and Middle Eastern history of thoughts.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @Jake
    @AaronB

    They derive from in order to subvert and then replace. The 'religion' of Enlightenment is to replace historic Christianity.

  6. I remember landing at JFK in the early 2000’s and being met by the New Deal-style wall art. It was something with workers in factories, farmers on the field, and some bn playing basketball. Romanians just scraped off the walls displaying something similar, and ours didn’t even show the Gypsies!

    • LOL: Anatoly Karlin
  7. As a non-American, I am just curious who the “blessed spirits” watching for Biden and Harris are. Second on the left is John McCain, I think, while last to the right is Ruth Ginsburg, am I right? The other two I cannot recognize.

    • Replies: @Shortsword
    @Carlo

    I think it's John Lewis and Elijah Cummings. Both recently passed away. They're only famous inside USA.

    Replies: @songbird

    , @Almost Missouri
    @Carlo

    What Shortsword said. And Lewis and Cummings aren't even really that famous inside the US . Most Americans don't recognize them and if they do, they often can't tell them apart, and if they can, they usually can't tell you why you should think well of either of them.

    So in other words, they are Affirmative Action Saints.

    Replies: @Carlo

  8. Is that Suleimani coming to islamic heaven? If not homo, he really should be fucking pissed when found all those dudes waiting instead of dozens and dozens of promised female virgins 🙂

    • Replies: @AnonFromTN
    @sudden death


    promised female virgins
     
    You forget that there is nothing virgin about promised Houries. They are reusable “virgins”: after sex, they become “virgins” again the next day, ready for the next “martyr”. Heavenly prostitutes would be a more fitting description.
    , @AltanBakshi
    @sudden death

    Those two guys with funny helmets are in all likelihood the successors of Muhammad (pbuh), Ali and Hussein, who both died as martyrs.

  9. @Carlo
    As a non-American, I am just curious who the "blessed spirits" watching for Biden and Harris are. Second on the left is John McCain, I think, while last to the right is Ruth Ginsburg, am I right? The other two I cannot recognize.

    Replies: @Shortsword, @Almost Missouri

    I think it’s John Lewis and Elijah Cummings. Both recently passed away. They’re only famous inside USA.

    • Agree: Blinky Bill
    • Replies: @songbird
    @Shortsword

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    Replies: @Morton's toes, @Not Raul, @Almost Missouri

  10. @sudden death
    Is that Suleimani coming to islamic heaven? If not homo, he really should be fucking pissed when found all those dudes waiting instead of dozens and dozens of promised female virgins :)

    Replies: @AnonFromTN, @AltanBakshi

    promised female virgins

    You forget that there is nothing virgin about promised Houries. They are reusable “virgins”: after sex, they become “virgins” again the next day, ready for the next “martyr”. Heavenly prostitutes would be a more fitting description.

    • LOL: Rattus Norwegius
  11. @Blinky Bill
    How many of you can identify the twelve deceased Iranians/Shia? Steve Sailer has written obituaries for all four Americans, so they are easy to identify.

    Replies: @songbird, @Yevardian, @yakushimaru, @yakushimaru

    they are easy to identify.

    I believe that Death mistook John Lewis for Elijah Cummings, and then months later rectified his mistake, without even knowing, when it was Lewis’ time.

    • Agree: Blinky Bill
    • Replies: @Blinky Bill
    @songbird

    He should of got the tattoo.

  12. @Shortsword
    @Carlo

    I think it's John Lewis and Elijah Cummings. Both recently passed away. They're only famous inside USA.

    Replies: @songbird

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    • Replies: @Morton's toes
    @songbird

    Nobody has a clue what Jesus looked like. The most popular image I have seen is Sallman's.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Head_of_Christ

    Warner Sallman imagined this.

    What I would like to know but am too lazy to google is who painted ghost of John McCain smiling down on Jack Off Joe and the Skank Ho. If I worked in an office I would seriously consider subjecting my co-workers to that shit if things got anxious.

    , @Not Raul
    @songbird


    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.
     
    Binladen
    , @Almost Missouri
    @songbird

    I'm guessing Jesus, but I've only ever seen that image as part of various shitpoasting memes, so I concluded it was never meant to be taken seriously as the other two images were.

    Replies: @songbird

  13. RTS index is going nowhere fast, I remember monitoring it 10 years ago it is almost unchanged now from where it was 10 years ago. That spike at the end of last year seems to have been just irrational exuberance.

    https://markets.businessinsider.com/index/rts

    • Replies: @mal
    @128

    Well it went from 250 to 1250 in less than 20 years so I wouldn't say it went nowhere.

    But yeah, if you want it to go higher, you need to phone Nabiullina (Central Bank of Russia Chair) and tell her to spin up those money printers like the Federal Reserve does. It will have to happen eventually anyway.

    Replies: @JL

  14. I believe neoliberalism to distinguish it from classical libertarianism? Or new deal liberalism? That spike in the RTS for end-2019 seems to be just a case of irrational exuberance.

  15. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    …The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    That would depend on what your definition of ‘Now‘ is. It would seem that accepting death is a more generic concept than something purely tied to religion. But you are on to something.

    We are not entering a new age of Enlightenment, that way of thinking is too far in the past. We are living in an age of peak liberalism and the liberals have just reasserted their dominance. If you want to be more precise, we are living in the age of Secular Judaism that almost perfectly overlaps with what is described as liberal these days. NY Times has been the voice of Secular Judaism ideology for generations and they have slowly expanded and took over all of the American society and are on their way to spread around the world. They do use nice fonts.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I think religions are what has been called "immortality projects".

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego - that element that is "above" your nature directing events - vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China's dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.


    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn't mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to "ingathered" from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Beckow, @AltanBakshi, @AltanBakshi

  16. @Dmitry

    Joe Biden’s victory marks

     

    Why "neoliberalism", when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word "liberal" (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone's views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore "liberalism" today, refers to what in a 20th century was "centre-left" ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology "neoliberal" was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate "neoliberal" concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against "neoliberal" views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    Replies: @Beckow, @TG, @Daniel Chieh, @Anatoly Karlin, @Yevardian

    Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    The libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that’s why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with ‘abolish money‘ and ‘let’s die to get a few virgins‘ in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme. As long as modern conservatism and nationalism are polluted by the sociopathic libertarian ideas, they will keep on failing when confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    • Agree: dfordoom
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Beckow

    Trump speaks about business and free market, as if they are holy religious doctrines, and this is probably the most common theme in his speeches. His way of speaking sounds like a product of the 1980s neoliberal ideology, when this rhetoric was very common in America, and used in an almost messianic way against a background of the final stage of the Cold War.

    However, Trump is not someone who read Hayek and Milton Friedman He was also promoting mercantalist ideas in foreign trade, which are against the neoliberal emphasis on free trade, and the theories of the liberal thinkers of the 19th century. So Trump was neoliberal except in rhetoric of trade policy, where he contradicted classical liberalism.


    libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that’s why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with ‘abolish money‘ and ‘let’s die to get a few virgins‘ in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme.
     

    Yes the libertarianism in America, ultimately just supports "neoliberal" or 19th century liberal (Gladstonian style) policies for society.

    But libertarianism is marketed at a different audience in the USA. So the end policies it supports are similar, but the packaging of "libertarianism" has been quite different, and targeted at a different type of people.

    Libertarianism in America is promoted as a kind of eccentric moral philosophy and theory of society, and therefore it can be marketed as an alternative for people who would be left-wing idealists, as well as more rightwing "rebels" and "survivalists".

    Whereas the neoliberalism/classical liberalism is promoted for a more cynical bourgeois audience, who have rather less interest in moral equality, but which have the real power in the country. Of course Trump is in the latter category, and is never going to believe in the idealistic form of libertarianism. But he is fully into the neoliberal ideals of the 1980s.

    Speech of Gordon Gekko in the film "Wallstreet", sounds almost exactly like Trump. Trump almost seems to conceptionalize himself like a character from a novel of Ayn Rand (even living inside a skyscraper, like an Ayn Rand hero).


    confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

     

    Although Margaret Thatcher was very popular in elections in the United Kingdom, despite her speeches almost sociopathic inability to soften the rhetoric of social darwinist aspects of neoliberalism ("there's no such thing as society") - although she is a very divisive memory figure in the Kingdom.

    In the 1990s, Bill Clinton was attempting to balance neoliberal policies, with a more emphatic centrist rhetoric.
    , @Grahamsno(G64)
    @Beckow


    Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.
     
    Don't forget the masterpiece gutting Obamacare in the middle of a raging pandemic. Utterly tone deaf
    psychopathic bastards.
    , @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.
     
    Trump was in no way libertarian. Government spending increased under him. The Fed adopted a policy of low interest rates to benefit Wall Street and then bailed them out this year when they got in trouble. He wasn't a free trader. He did follow a noninterventionist foreign policy but increased, not decreased, military spending. As long as we have a large military, it is likely to lead to future wars because, as Madeline Albright once said, what's the point of having this superb military if you aren't going to use it.

    People who label Trump libertarian are doing so for a reason. When his nonlibertarian policies fail, as nonlibertarian policies always do, Trump's nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government. To win elections, people will say, we need the Republicans to adopt big government policies. You will then have a big government right and a big government left and there will be no brakes on more government spending. This is already happening with trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.

    Replies: @Beckow

  17. That woke msm standard narrative about Iran and martyrs you used in this faux edgy comment is kamalaish🤷‍♂️
    A true martyr always go to heaven, that is a Christian doctrine to😏
    So your brave and stunning mainstream buzzfeed attempt at being edgy falls flat for anyone with an iq above 75.

  18. @128
    RTS index is going nowhere fast, I remember monitoring it 10 years ago it is almost unchanged now from where it was 10 years ago. That spike at the end of last year seems to have been just irrational exuberance.

    https://markets.businessinsider.com/index/rts

    Replies: @mal

    Well it went from 250 to 1250 in less than 20 years so I wouldn’t say it went nowhere.

    But yeah, if you want it to go higher, you need to phone Nabiullina (Central Bank of Russia Chair) and tell her to spin up those money printers like the Federal Reserve does. It will have to happen eventually anyway.

    • Replies: @JL
    @mal

    The RTS is a dollar based index, really a 90s/00s artifact, so Nabiullina turning on the printing presses will not do anything to move it. The way they're printing dollars in the US these days, though, might help. The Ruble based index is MOEX (old MICEX), which is doing just fine even with relatively high interest rates. The question of which index matters is one of perspective. For domestic investors, MOEX is pertinent, for foreign investors it would be RTS. Commenter 128 is either behind the times or just out of it.

  19. @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.
     
    That would depend on what your definition of 'Now' is. It would seem that accepting death is a more generic concept than something purely tied to religion. But you are on to something.

    We are not entering a new age of Enlightenment, that way of thinking is too far in the past. We are living in an age of peak liberalism and the liberals have just reasserted their dominance. If you want to be more precise, we are living in the age of Secular Judaism that almost perfectly overlaps with what is described as liberal these days. NY Times has been the voice of Secular Judaism ideology for generations and they have slowly expanded and took over all of the American society and are on their way to spread around the world. They do use nice fonts.

    Replies: @AaronB

    I think religions are what has been called “immortality projects”.

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego – that element that is “above” your nature directing events – vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China’s dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.

    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn’t mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to “ingathered” from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.
     
    It seems like in Christianity the 'battle' is over and has already been won, there could never have been an actual battle with Satan, given he is just a minor creation of God. He is just a defective angel wandering around with other similar angels causing trouble until a final end is put to him at the second coming.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @Beckow
    @AaronB

    You hide behind theology, good, evil, manicheanism, categories that mean different things to different people at different times. What matters is how we live, what we get out of life. The theology stuff is a distraction, an attempt to obfuscate the obvious.

    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn't bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and - as always - taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.


    ...current China’s dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.
     
    I don't know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye... (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.

    There are a lot of bad ideas that originated in Christianity, so what? There are also some good ones. The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state - sooner or later the people wise up. For one reason or another a lot of Secular Judaism, especially after WWII, has seen any nation-state (other than their own) as a potential threat. So you get the NY Times ideology that roughly corresponds to what the elites are trying to implement in the world. Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less 'elite'.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB

    In Christianity nations and governments are part of this fallen world, they are not part of heaven, but they definitely are part of this world, read St Augustines De Civitate Dei if you dont believe. He himself says that there is the earthly kingdom or civitate and kingdom of heaven and that they are two different things.

    I have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins.

    , @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB

    Like an animal? So like the original cynicists of Diogenes? Cynic literally means dog-like, and Diogenes lived outdoors like an animal, masturbated, urinated, defecated and so on in public, praised the good qualities of dog and even wanted and tried to live like a dog. Theres AaronB a good model for you to follow if you want really to live in the "Now" and naturally! And no more words, do it, just follow your heart and nature! You know what to do!

  20. @Dmitry

    Joe Biden’s victory marks

     

    Why "neoliberalism", when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word "liberal" (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone's views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore "liberalism" today, refers to what in a 20th century was "centre-left" ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology "neoliberal" was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate "neoliberal" concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against "neoliberal" views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    Replies: @Beckow, @TG, @Daniel Chieh, @Anatoly Karlin, @Yevardian

    I’m sorry, I must seriously disagree. Modern ‘liberals’ are in no way ‘center left,’ they are extreme far-right anti-worker pro-super rich extremists.

    Sure, they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. ‘The poor, they have no bread? Then let them eat diversity!’

    Ignoring social frippery like transgender bathrooms, what are modern ‘center left’ liberals in favor of? (And I mean REALLY in favor of, not paying lip service to during a campaign).

    – A bankruptcy law that turns regular workers into lifetime debt slaves (the founders of this republic, no liberals they, did not believe in debtors prisons and very much felt that there should be a mechanism for non-rich people to discharge unsayable debts).
    – A privatized health care system that costs about double what any other industrial health care system does, while the new innovation of ‘surprise medical billing’ is driving even people with ‘good’ (i.e., expensive) insurance into poverty.
    – Spending trillions of dollars on endless winless foreign wars that serve to benefit only wealthy defense contractors (and I suppose also Israel).
    – An open borders immigration system that pushes wages down and rents and profits up. No, this is not ‘liberal’ (check out: FDR), this is a far-right cheap-labor-uber-alles policy, always has been always will be.
    – Trillions of dollars in bailouts and subsidies for the super rich and Wall Street (remember: Obama after he won the election?). Meanwhile the real economy is starved of capital.
    – An education system bloated out of control, driven by subsidized profits to the big banks, driving a generation into lifetime slavery. It really doesn’t cost that much to actually teach people, most industrialized countries manage this feat with little direct cost to the students.
    – ‘private-public partnerships’ where the public puts up the cash, and takes all the risk, and wealthy investors are guaranteed a profit regardless of how it turns out. A nice deal if you can get it! (No, YOU can’t).
    I could go on. Bottom line: yes indeed, Obama and Biden (‘The Senator from Mastercard’) etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do, and then talk pretty.

    • Replies: @Svevlad
    @TG

    Please, don't taint Marie Antoinette by implying the revolutionary propaganda is true, and even more so by comparing her to the arch-soyadeen/neoliberal/globohomo dogs. She was a very charitable woman

    , @Dmitry
    @TG


    they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. ‘The poor, they have no bread? ’
     
    Franklin Roosevelt's bailouts and stimulus packages were also aimed, ultimately, at saving country's ruling class, to which he belonged, from a collapse or revolution. But justification for policies like "priming the pump" relies on belief in things like Keynesian "multiplier theory".

    Obama's policies were outwardly justified with demand-side economics. For any common sense person in the street, it's predictable that a large part of stimulus money, actually resulted in government giving taxpayer money to CEOs' wallet (it's in Russia!). However, this wasn't Obama's belief. We cannot say that Obama was such a cynical or intelligent person that he didn't believe in the demand-side economic theories, as his advisors believed.


    Then let them eat diversity!
     
    Lol, yes it's an ersatz type of equality.

    Biden (‘The Senator from Mastercard’) etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do,

     

    If Biden really will raise corporation tax to 28%, as he promised?

    Although there is potentially something clever that Biden is planning to pressure OECD to prevent companies from re-incorporating in other OECD countries.


    Speaking to an audience of more than 300 institutional investors who control trillions of euro in funds, Mr Donohoe said a Biden administration would drive forward the OECD reform agenda on corporate tax, which would bring “challenges” for Ireland.

    The OECD is updating international tax rules for the age of digital commerce, in particular to put a floor on tax rates and discourage big internet companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon from booking profits in low-tax countries like Ireland instead of where their customers are...

    The proposed rules risk undermining Ireland's corporate tax receipts, which have bolstered the country's fiscal policy since the financial crisis and are a key component backing Covid spending plans. https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/irish-corporate-tax-take-could-be-negatively-affected-by-a-biden-presidency-39777128.html
     

  21. The core value of the NeoLiberals (f.k.a. NeoCons) is maximizing the number and intensity of foreign wars.
    ____

    Are you sure that Harris is hugging Biden?
    What does the fact that Biden’s face is not shown imply?

    The faces over Harris are incomplete. The image should include at least two more:
    -1- Chairman Mao — Representing their desire to serve CCP Elites instead of American workers.
    -2- A Ukrainian spirit — Representing their intent to wield nuclear weapons to “reclaim” Crimea, a place most Americans could not find on a globe.

    Use of The Stars & Stripes is an abomination unto SJW Globalism. These flags should be replaced by banners from Antifa and BLM.

    Additional symbolism would be gained by placing a burning “Slave-Owner Washington” Monument in the background.

    Joe Biden’s victory marks a return to Enlightenment principles of science and rationality

    AK,

    Do you actually believe that Joe Biden is Rational? His interaction with the American people proves that he is putting the DEM back in DEMentia.

    Also, it is far too early to declare “victory”. Not only is the Pennsylvania election for President in doubt. Every other race on the PA ballot has also been blocked pending judicial review.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/judge-blocks-certification-pennsylvania-election-results

    — How long did Al Gore backers keep his recount going?
    — Why do Biden backers keep trying to push a shorter timing for Trump’s vastly stronger cases across multiple states?

    NeoLibs seem quite desperate to “stop the counting”. What are they trying to conceal?

    PEACE 😇

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    @A123

    Your sarcasm detector needs a-fixing.

    Replies: @A123

  22. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    Yea I don’t know about immortality but everyone who is reading this (even if you are a dog or other small animal) is around 4 billion years old. With probably at least few hundred million years left on the clock. (Planet will start acting funny after that).

    Your current form doesn’t really matter all that much, what matters is the genetic material you are carrying and the evolutionary process by which it gets expressed and propagates. We are all derived from the Last Universal Common Ancestor and then ran through different environments to generate solutions to the adaptation problem.

    Religions are simply fairy tales that attempt to capture this reality however imperfectly (Hindus with reincarnation stuff, Abrahamic religions with common point of origin).

    Therefore, anybody who takes the long view will come off sounding a bit religious. Transhumanists take the longer view, so yea, there will be some of that vibe going on.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @mal

    Interesting thesis. I like it. It points to the fundamental unity underlying multiplicity. Its a nice little myth.

    Transhumsnists are interested in immortality and human perfectability, which are the basic religious themes. Of course there is nothing wrong with being religious.

    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best, but if you can't do that you should certainly join a religion.

    Replies: @SveVid

  23. @A123
    The core value of the NeoLiberals (f.k.a. NeoCons) is maximizing the number and intensity of foreign wars.
    ____

    Are you sure that Harris is hugging Biden?
    What does the fact that Biden's face is not shown imply?

    The faces over Harris are incomplete. The image should include at least two more:
    -1- Chairman Mao -- Representing their desire to serve CCP Elites instead of American workers.
    -2- A Ukrainian spirit -- Representing their intent to wield nuclear weapons to "reclaim" Crimea, a place most Americans could not find on a globe.

    Use of The Stars & Stripes is an abomination unto SJW Globalism. These flags should be replaced by banners from Antifa and BLM.

    Additional symbolism would be gained by placing a burning "Slave-Owner Washington" Monument in the background.

    Joe Biden’s victory marks a return to Enlightenment principles of science and rationality
     
    AK,

    Do you actually believe that Joe Biden is Rational? His interaction with the American people proves that he is putting the DEM back in DEMentia.

    Also, it is far too early to declare "victory". Not only is the Pennsylvania election for President in doubt. Every other race on the PA ballot has also been blocked pending judicial review.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/judge-blocks-certification-pennsylvania-election-results

    -- How long did Al Gore backers keep his recount going?
    -- Why do Biden backers keep trying to push a shorter timing for Trump's vastly stronger cases across multiple states?

    NeoLibs seem quite desperate to "stop the counting". What are they trying to conceal?

    PEACE 😇

    Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    Your sarcasm detector needs a-fixing.

    • LOL: A123
    • Replies: @A123
    @Anatoly Karlin

    AK,

    Sorry about that...

    I was trying to respond to your sarcasm with sarcasm, but apparently my sarcasm was not clear enough.

    HTML5 really needs sarcasm tags -- (sarc) (/sarc).

    PEACE 😇

  24. @Dmitry

    Joe Biden’s victory marks

     

    Why "neoliberalism", when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word "liberal" (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone's views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore "liberalism" today, refers to what in a 20th century was "centre-left" ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology "neoliberal" was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate "neoliberal" concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against "neoliberal" views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    Replies: @Beckow, @TG, @Daniel Chieh, @Anatoly Karlin, @Yevardian

    Ron, can we have an Autism tag added to Agree/Disagree/Etc?

    • Agree: fnn, Shortsword, Matra
    • LOL: Blinky Bill
  25. @Dmitry

    Joe Biden’s victory marks

     

    Why "neoliberalism", when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word "liberal" (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone's views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore "liberalism" today, refers to what in a 20th century was "centre-left" ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology "neoliberal" was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate "neoliberal" concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against "neoliberal" views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    Replies: @Beckow, @TG, @Daniel Chieh, @Anatoly Karlin, @Yevardian

    • Agree: Daniel Chieh
    • LOL: mal, Svevlad
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @Anatoly Karlin

    You are a blogger about political topics. I'm sure you are familiar with "neoliberalism" from politics books.

    Bill Clinton had incorporated some moderate aspects of neoliberalism, but also balanced it with some (more centre-left) policies which opposed this, such as increases in federal minimum wage. Obama is viewed as partly turning against neoliberalism, or signalling an "end of the era of neoliberalism", due to focus on increasing government and use of Roosevelt style "priming the pump" stimulus packages.

    To the extent there was anything substantial in Biden's election campaign and debate with Trump; his rhetoric seemed to be claiming to oppose neoliberal ideas: he will raise corporation tax, and his rhetoric was talking about using government power to enforce equality of outcomes in race, gender, and even possible "wealth tax" and complaining about “the one percent".

    http://library.lol/main/a4fe1f2735e9c3969c4d67161542bd8b

    https://i.imgur.com/smdol2m.jpg

    https://i.imgur.com/ZXLzH7A.jpg

    https://i.imgur.com/NbKCpJZ.jpg

  26. @mal
    @AaronB


    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.
     
    Yea I don't know about immortality but everyone who is reading this (even if you are a dog or other small animal) is around 4 billion years old. With probably at least few hundred million years left on the clock. (Planet will start acting funny after that).

    Your current form doesn't really matter all that much, what matters is the genetic material you are carrying and the evolutionary process by which it gets expressed and propagates. We are all derived from the Last Universal Common Ancestor and then ran through different environments to generate solutions to the adaptation problem.

    Religions are simply fairy tales that attempt to capture this reality however imperfectly (Hindus with reincarnation stuff, Abrahamic religions with common point of origin).

    Therefore, anybody who takes the long view will come off sounding a bit religious. Transhumanists take the longer view, so yea, there will be some of that vibe going on.

    Replies: @AaronB

    Interesting thesis. I like it. It points to the fundamental unity underlying multiplicity. Its a nice little myth.

    Transhumsnists are interested in immortality and human perfectability, which are the basic religious themes. Of course there is nothing wrong with being religious.

    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best, but if you can’t do that you should certainly join a religion.

    • Disagree: SveVid
    • Replies: @SveVid
    @AaronB


    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best
     
    The "living in the Now" philosophy has it's place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn't belong to anything bigger.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn't mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle....one follows the other...

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality....and its wrong...it's actually a circle

    Replies: @Daniel Chieh, @AaronB

  27. @Anatoly Karlin
    @A123

    Your sarcasm detector needs a-fixing.

    Replies: @A123

    AK,

    Sorry about that…

    I was trying to respond to your sarcasm with sarcasm, but apparently my sarcasm was not clear enough.

    HTML5 really needs sarcasm tags — (sarc) (/sarc).

    PEACE 😇

  28. @songbird
    @Shortsword

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    Replies: @Morton's toes, @Not Raul, @Almost Missouri

    Nobody has a clue what Jesus looked like. The most popular image I have seen is Sallman’s.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Head_of_Christ

    Warner Sallman imagined this.

    What I would like to know but am too lazy to google is who painted ghost of John McCain smiling down on Jack Off Joe and the Skank Ho. If I worked in an office I would seriously consider subjecting my co-workers to that shit if things got anxious.

  29. @songbird
    @Blinky Bill


    they are easy to identify.
     
    I believe that Death mistook John Lewis for Elijah Cummings, and then months later rectified his mistake, without even knowing, when it was Lewis' time.

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

    He should of got the tattoo.

    • Agree: songbird
  30. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I think religions are what has been called "immortality projects".

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego - that element that is "above" your nature directing events - vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China's dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.


    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn't mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to "ingathered" from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Beckow, @AltanBakshi, @AltanBakshi

    Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    It seems like in Christianity the ‘battle’ is over and has already been won, there could never have been an actual battle with Satan, given he is just a minor creation of God. He is just a defective angel wandering around with other similar angels causing trouble until a final end is put to him at the second coming.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    The battle is already won, true, but for the time being he is still a terrifying figure.

    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.

    Thats the classic manichean point of view. One side wins.

    In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @AltanBakshi

  31. Every nation gets the government religion it deserves.

  32. @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.
     
    It seems like in Christianity the 'battle' is over and has already been won, there could never have been an actual battle with Satan, given he is just a minor creation of God. He is just a defective angel wandering around with other similar angels causing trouble until a final end is put to him at the second coming.

    Replies: @AaronB

    The battle is already won, true, but for the time being he is still a terrifying figure.

    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.

    Thats the classic manichean point of view. One side wins.

    In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other.

    • LOL: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.
     
    I think I was referring to something different. AFAIK in Christianity there aren't two aspects of reality, because evil is non-existence or the perverted (destructive) use of things which are in themselves good. This mean that it can't be integrated into anything and it can't be a necessary part of anything.

    The terrifying problem, such as it is, is ignorance and alienation from God, leading to the failure to attain true human nature and the purpose of human life. Satan and other devils can play on men's weakness and deceive them but they don't represent any kind of force independent from God. On this topic, this is why a film like the Exorcist does not appear to be a Christian film, whereas the film Ostrov on a similar theme, is one (the demon runs tries to run away from the holy monk in Ostrov).

    I would agree that Christianity is not a dialectical religion. I would say current progressivism has a dialectical strand though, and that dialectical strains of it are at the forefront at the moment.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB

    "In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other."

    Once again you are talking out of your ass. In Buddhism there are things that make people suffer and things that dont make people suffer or are pleasurable, and things that we think that make us suffer, and things that we think are neutral or pleasurable. Its so simple! This metaphysical evil or good stuff is non-sense from a Buddhist point of view.

    Check out tree poisons AaronB! Those three are the roots of Samsaric existence, and true freedom in Buddhist sense is to be free from those three poisons, which twist and stain our cognition, which denies us the possibility to see the world as it is. Thus it can be said that those three poisons are evil in a conventional sense, for they are the root of all painful states.

    https://tricycle.org/beginners/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2020/05/three-poisons-scaled.jpg

    Tashi Delek! AaronB-la check out this stuff! Snake, Pig and the Bird, those are the three poisons!

  33. If you want to imagine the future of America, just imagine millions of white soyadeen praying to their intersectional overlords by violently smashing their heads against the floor until their faces are caved in, as a small exterminatus of some foreign power seeking lebensraum rains down upon them for the 15th time of the year

    By then, the intersectional minority majority would have scattered outside the large coastal cities into the interior, as the coastal cities would probably be treaty ports, mostly Russian and Chinese

  34. @TG
    @Dmitry

    I'm sorry, I must seriously disagree. Modern 'liberals' are in no way 'center left,' they are extreme far-right anti-worker pro-super rich extremists.

    Sure, they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. 'The poor, they have no bread? Then let them eat diversity!'

    Ignoring social frippery like transgender bathrooms, what are modern 'center left' liberals in favor of? (And I mean REALLY in favor of, not paying lip service to during a campaign).

    - A bankruptcy law that turns regular workers into lifetime debt slaves (the founders of this republic, no liberals they, did not believe in debtors prisons and very much felt that there should be a mechanism for non-rich people to discharge unsayable debts).
    - A privatized health care system that costs about double what any other industrial health care system does, while the new innovation of 'surprise medical billing' is driving even people with 'good' (i.e., expensive) insurance into poverty.
    - Spending trillions of dollars on endless winless foreign wars that serve to benefit only wealthy defense contractors (and I suppose also Israel).
    - An open borders immigration system that pushes wages down and rents and profits up. No, this is not 'liberal' (check out: FDR), this is a far-right cheap-labor-uber-alles policy, always has been always will be.
    - Trillions of dollars in bailouts and subsidies for the super rich and Wall Street (remember: Obama after he won the election?). Meanwhile the real economy is starved of capital.
    - An education system bloated out of control, driven by subsidized profits to the big banks, driving a generation into lifetime slavery. It really doesn't cost that much to actually teach people, most industrialized countries manage this feat with little direct cost to the students.
    - 'private-public partnerships' where the public puts up the cash, and takes all the risk, and wealthy investors are guaranteed a profit regardless of how it turns out. A nice deal if you can get it! (No, YOU can't).
    I could go on. Bottom line: yes indeed, Obama and Biden ('The Senator from Mastercard') etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do, and then talk pretty.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Dmitry

    Please, don’t taint Marie Antoinette by implying the revolutionary propaganda is true, and even more so by comparing her to the arch-soyadeen/neoliberal/globohomo dogs. She was a very charitable woman

    • Agree: Bill
  35. @songbird
    @Shortsword

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    Replies: @Morton's toes, @Not Raul, @Almost Missouri

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    Binladen

  36. @128
    You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.

    Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard

    You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.

    Where’s Max Zorin when you really need him?

    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    @The Wild Geese Howard


    Where’s Max Zorin when you really need him?
     
    Whenever I need a big lift, I watch Max (Christopher Walken) at his best right here. Watch the whole clip, even though he doesn't start flyin till 2:53.

    https://youtu.be/wCDIYvFmgW8

    Dang, white boy's got rhythm. :-)
    , @showmethereal
    @The Wild Geese Howard

    That James Bond film was exactly my thought when I read the comment above. Ian Fleming was a part of the British intelligence apparatus in real life. So it's not surprising that many plots in Bond movies fit with real life things we see in the news. The assassination of the Iranian nuclear scientist in the past 24 hours is another example.

  37. @Carlo
    As a non-American, I am just curious who the "blessed spirits" watching for Biden and Harris are. Second on the left is John McCain, I think, while last to the right is Ruth Ginsburg, am I right? The other two I cannot recognize.

    Replies: @Shortsword, @Almost Missouri

    What Shortsword said. And Lewis and Cummings aren’t even really that famous inside the US . Most Americans don’t recognize them and if they do, they often can’t tell them apart, and if they can, they usually can’t tell you why you should think well of either of them.

    So in other words, they are Affirmative Action Saints.

    • Replies: @Carlo
    @Almost Missouri


    So in other words, they are Affirmative Action Saints.
     
    Thanks. That explains why they are in "Libs Heaven".
  38. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I think religions are what has been called "immortality projects".

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego - that element that is "above" your nature directing events - vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China's dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.


    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn't mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to "ingathered" from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Beckow, @AltanBakshi, @AltanBakshi

    You hide behind theology, good, evil, manicheanism, categories that mean different things to different people at different times. What matters is how we live, what we get out of life. The theology stuff is a distraction, an attempt to obfuscate the obvious.

    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn’t bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and – as always – taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.

    …current China’s dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.

    I don’t know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye… (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.

    There are a lot of bad ideas that originated in Christianity, so what? There are also some good ones. The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state – sooner or later the people wise up. For one reason or another a lot of Secular Judaism, especially after WWII, has seen any nation-state (other than their own) as a potential threat. So you get the NY Times ideology that roughly corresponds to what the elites are trying to implement in the world. Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less ‘elite‘.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I'm not hiding behind theology, I'm just saying that the current ideas we live by are not Jewish religious ideas made secular. The Enlightenment is Christian ideas made secular.


    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn’t bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and – as always – taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.
     
    Okay, but none of these are Jewish ideas. Capitalism was developed intellectually by a slew of brilliant Enhlish writers, but was pioneered by Italian Renaissance states like Venice, which were merchant oligarchies.

    But ok, Jews did do very well under capitalism, but there is nothing in the Jewish religion about that. But how is anything goes personal liberty Jewish? Or taking care of an insider elite that is exempt from rules? (That seems rather common to all societies, unfortunately).

    I understood secular Judaism to mean Jewish religious ideas translated into a secular context. For instance, in Christianity there is supposed to be a supernatural redemption. The Enlightenment made that into a secular redemption through science. I dont see a similar process with Jewish ideas.

    don’t know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye… (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.
     
    Absolutely, China is modeling itself on a Western philosophy. Its exists in the West, its just more advanced in China. And China has explicitly adopted this philosophy without controversy at the state level, while its still controversial in the West and applied in a more piecemeal fashion. But we may yet evolve to China's level of authoritarian control, if people like Ron Unz have their way, and we are trending in that direction.

    Still, as of now the panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.

    The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state – sooner or later the people wise up
     
    .

    I would say, the main driving force is the Enlightenment ideal of creating rational man without primitive attachments, and to abolish conflict and war. War was endemic to Europe, and was seen as rooted in nationalistic attachments. The two world wars were absolutely catastrophic, and were seen as the culmination of nationalism.

    As I said elsewhere, until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare, there will be widespread opposition to it, because modern technology has the potential to destroy human civilization. This is a serious concern that is just ignored by nationalists. I myself am sympathetic to nationalism, but this issue must be addressed. For instance, the Austro-Hunfarian empire kept the peace between various groups, who descended into vicious warfare the moment they became independent nations. Its hard not to conclude an empire, scaled up globally, is better for peace.

    Without question, business interests saw they could benefit from this in the form of cheap labor at home and abroad, but they did not lead this movement.

    Again, I do not see how this is a Jewish idea made secular.

    As far as I understand your argument, you are saying Jews benefited from capitalism and globalism, so you call them secular Judaism. But Jews did not create these trends, and they are not characteristic ideas of the Jewish religion. A whole host of groups benefited from these trends, and they were developed by European philosophers and implemented by European elites.

    Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less ‘elite‘.
     
    That's not necessarily true. Elites may be more elite within their nation than in a global system. It just depends on particular circumstances. The Chinese elites are not benevolent, they ruthlessly exploit their people. Its just that for the moment, their particular economic circumstances allow them to be more elite in a nationalistic context.

    Assuming your idea that elites will always further and defend their status is correct, they will choose whatever system is best for that. So nationalistic elites are that way because it best preserves their status.

    However, I am wary of reducing all human behavior to considerations of efficiency, because I think ideology plays a very real role, and ideology can lead to very inefficient behavior. And ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.

    Replies: @Beckow, @Beckow

  39. @songbird
    @Shortsword

    Who is that ghost behind Trump? Rasputin has a longer beard, and he seems too sinister-looking to be Jesus.

    Replies: @Morton's toes, @Not Raul, @Almost Missouri

    I’m guessing Jesus, but I’ve only ever seen that image as part of various shitpoasting memes, so I concluded it was never meant to be taken seriously as the other two images were.

    • Replies: @songbird
    @Almost Missouri

    The artist should have used the Sacred Heart.

  40. @Almost Missouri
    @songbird

    I'm guessing Jesus, but I've only ever seen that image as part of various shitpoasting memes, so I concluded it was never meant to be taken seriously as the other two images were.

    Replies: @songbird

    The artist should have used the Sacred Heart.

  41. @The Wild Geese Howard
    @128


    You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.
     
    Where's Max Zorin when you really need him?

    https://youtu.be/RCzC3ZeMxws

    Replies: @Mr. Hack, @showmethereal

    Where’s Max Zorin when you really need him?

    Whenever I need a big lift, I watch Max (Christopher Walken) at his best right here. Watch the whole clip, even though he doesn’t start flyin till 2:53.

    Dang, white boy’s got rhythm. 🙂

  42. @Anatoly Karlin
    @Dmitry

    https://i.imgur.com/WP4483u.jpg

    Replies: @Dmitry

    You are a blogger about political topics. I’m sure you are familiar with “neoliberalism” from politics books.

    Bill Clinton had incorporated some moderate aspects of neoliberalism, but also balanced it with some (more centre-left) policies which opposed this, such as increases in federal minimum wage. Obama is viewed as partly turning against neoliberalism, or signalling an “end of the era of neoliberalism”, due to focus on increasing government and use of Roosevelt style “priming the pump” stimulus packages.

    To the extent there was anything substantial in Biden’s election campaign and debate with Trump; his rhetoric seemed to be claiming to oppose neoliberal ideas: he will raise corporation tax, and his rhetoric was talking about using government power to enforce equality of outcomes in race, gender, and even possible “wealth tax” and complaining about “the one percent”.

    http://library.lol/main/a4fe1f2735e9c3969c4d67161542bd8b

    • Thanks: AltanBakshi
    • LOL: Daniel Chieh
  43. @Beckow
    @Dmitry


    Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.
     
    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    The libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that's why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with 'abolish money' and 'let's die to get a few virgins' in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme. As long as modern conservatism and nationalism are polluted by the sociopathic libertarian ideas, they will keep on failing when confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Grahamsno(G64), @Mark G.

    Trump speaks about business and free market, as if they are holy religious doctrines, and this is probably the most common theme in his speeches. His way of speaking sounds like a product of the 1980s neoliberal ideology, when this rhetoric was very common in America, and used in an almost messianic way against a background of the final stage of the Cold War.

    However, Trump is not someone who read Hayek and Milton Friedman He was also promoting mercantalist ideas in foreign trade, which are against the neoliberal emphasis on free trade, and the theories of the liberal thinkers of the 19th century. So Trump was neoliberal except in rhetoric of trade policy, where he contradicted classical liberalism.

    libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that’s why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with ‘abolish money‘ and ‘let’s die to get a few virgins‘ in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme.

    Yes the libertarianism in America, ultimately just supports “neoliberal” or 19th century liberal (Gladstonian style) policies for society.

    But libertarianism is marketed at a different audience in the USA. So the end policies it supports are similar, but the packaging of “libertarianism” has been quite different, and targeted at a different type of people.

    Libertarianism in America is promoted as a kind of eccentric moral philosophy and theory of society, and therefore it can be marketed as an alternative for people who would be left-wing idealists, as well as more rightwing “rebels” and “survivalists”.

    Whereas the neoliberalism/classical liberalism is promoted for a more cynical bourgeois audience, who have rather less interest in moral equality, but which have the real power in the country. Of course Trump is in the latter category, and is never going to believe in the idealistic form of libertarianism. But he is fully into the neoliberal ideals of the 1980s.

    Speech of Gordon Gekko in the film “Wallstreet”, sounds almost exactly like Trump. Trump almost seems to conceptionalize himself like a character from a novel of Ayn Rand (even living inside a skyscraper, like an Ayn Rand hero).

    confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Although Margaret Thatcher was very popular in elections in the United Kingdom, despite her speeches almost sociopathic inability to soften the rhetoric of social darwinist aspects of neoliberalism (“there’s no such thing as society”) – although she is a very divisive memory figure in the Kingdom.

    In the 1990s, Bill Clinton was attempting to balance neoliberal policies, with a more emphatic centrist rhetoric.

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
  44. @TG
    @Dmitry

    I'm sorry, I must seriously disagree. Modern 'liberals' are in no way 'center left,' they are extreme far-right anti-worker pro-super rich extremists.

    Sure, they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. 'The poor, they have no bread? Then let them eat diversity!'

    Ignoring social frippery like transgender bathrooms, what are modern 'center left' liberals in favor of? (And I mean REALLY in favor of, not paying lip service to during a campaign).

    - A bankruptcy law that turns regular workers into lifetime debt slaves (the founders of this republic, no liberals they, did not believe in debtors prisons and very much felt that there should be a mechanism for non-rich people to discharge unsayable debts).
    - A privatized health care system that costs about double what any other industrial health care system does, while the new innovation of 'surprise medical billing' is driving even people with 'good' (i.e., expensive) insurance into poverty.
    - Spending trillions of dollars on endless winless foreign wars that serve to benefit only wealthy defense contractors (and I suppose also Israel).
    - An open borders immigration system that pushes wages down and rents and profits up. No, this is not 'liberal' (check out: FDR), this is a far-right cheap-labor-uber-alles policy, always has been always will be.
    - Trillions of dollars in bailouts and subsidies for the super rich and Wall Street (remember: Obama after he won the election?). Meanwhile the real economy is starved of capital.
    - An education system bloated out of control, driven by subsidized profits to the big banks, driving a generation into lifetime slavery. It really doesn't cost that much to actually teach people, most industrialized countries manage this feat with little direct cost to the students.
    - 'private-public partnerships' where the public puts up the cash, and takes all the risk, and wealthy investors are guaranteed a profit regardless of how it turns out. A nice deal if you can get it! (No, YOU can't).
    I could go on. Bottom line: yes indeed, Obama and Biden ('The Senator from Mastercard') etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do, and then talk pretty.

    Replies: @Svevlad, @Dmitry

    they will TALK like FDR, but they WALK like Marie Antoinette. ‘The poor, they have no bread? ’

    Franklin Roosevelt’s bailouts and stimulus packages were also aimed, ultimately, at saving country’s ruling class, to which he belonged, from a collapse or revolution. But justification for policies like “priming the pump” relies on belief in things like Keynesian “multiplier theory”.

    Obama’s policies were outwardly justified with demand-side economics. For any common sense person in the street, it’s predictable that a large part of stimulus money, actually resulted in government giving taxpayer money to CEOs’ wallet (it’s in Russia!). However, this wasn’t Obama’s belief. We cannot say that Obama was such a cynical or intelligent person that he didn’t believe in the demand-side economic theories, as his advisors believed.

    Then let them eat diversity!

    Lol, yes it’s an ersatz type of equality.

    Biden (‘The Senator from Mastercard’) etc.etc. are indeed neoliberal scum whose only real policy is to do whatever their wealthy patrons tell them to do,

    If Biden really will raise corporation tax to 28%, as he promised?

    Although there is potentially something clever that Biden is planning to pressure OECD to prevent companies from re-incorporating in other OECD countries.

    Speaking to an audience of more than 300 institutional investors who control trillions of euro in funds, Mr Donohoe said a Biden administration would drive forward the OECD reform agenda on corporate tax, which would bring “challenges” for Ireland.

    The OECD is updating international tax rules for the age of digital commerce, in particular to put a floor on tax rates and discourage big internet companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon from booking profits in low-tax countries like Ireland instead of where their customers are…

    The proposed rules risk undermining Ireland’s corporate tax receipts, which have bolstered the country’s fiscal policy since the financial crisis and are a key component backing Covid spending plans. https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/irish-corporate-tax-take-could-be-negatively-affected-by-a-biden-presidency-39777128.html

  45. @Beckow
    @Dmitry


    Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.
     
    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    The libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that's why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with 'abolish money' and 'let's die to get a few virgins' in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme. As long as modern conservatism and nationalism are polluted by the sociopathic libertarian ideas, they will keep on failing when confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Grahamsno(G64), @Mark G.

    Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Don’t forget the masterpiece gutting Obamacare in the middle of a raging pandemic. Utterly tone deaf
    psychopathic bastards.

  46. @sudden death
    Is that Suleimani coming to islamic heaven? If not homo, he really should be fucking pissed when found all those dudes waiting instead of dozens and dozens of promised female virgins :)

    Replies: @AnonFromTN, @AltanBakshi

    Those two guys with funny helmets are in all likelihood the successors of Muhammad (pbuh), Ali and Hussein, who both died as martyrs.

  47. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption

    This is more of a calvinist heresy, than how Christians traditionally thought. Christs kingdom is not of this world, its beyond this fallen world, but every Christiam can by faith and through good works enter to that everlasting and perfect kingdom. But I have already once mentioned this to you.

    People of the Middle Ages even believed that their world is slowly dying and decaying, that they were born when the world was old. It was totally different view of progress than that of englightenment philosophers.

    What sins men have made that such gross heresy as calvinism could rise and live? And that many even now think that its mistaken and deluded beliefs are somehow normative in Christianity.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.


    have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins
     
    .

    Yes, Judaism is actually very hard on the Jews. Its not just daddy's special boy who can do no wrong.

    The good thing about this idea, is that it saves us from self-defeating follies like antisemitism, where you blame all your problems on someone else, which is a natural tendency of the human mind. It prevents scapegoating and puts responsibility on ourselves, where we can actually do something about it.

    Many Jews are becoming secular and leaving the religion, but the idea that some outside group is manipulating us, like the antisemites think, would never take root in the Jewish community.

    The idea that our misfortunes are our own fault, leads to a kind of self respect and sturdy independence. We definitely acknowledge when someone hurt us or is our enemy, but the kind of self image the antisemite has, as a helpless victim, is not consistent with Jewish self respect, based on the idea that we are authors of our own fate in an ultimate way (God letting others hurt us is punishment for our sins)

    ------

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.

    The problem with Cynicism is that it is too "in your face" - it tries to outrage society, so is ultimately still bound by it.

    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn't live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don't even know what we like, we have to discover it.

    -----

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.

    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @BlackFlag

  48. @Beckow
    @Dmitry


    Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.
     
    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    The libertarian ideology is basically liberalism for assh..les, that's why they often come across as assh..les. It is also an ideology that has at most 15-20% support, similar to peak communist support (except after WWII). That means libertarians have to hide behind something else, as Trump did for a while.

    There is no more dysfunctional and idiotic ideology than libertarianism. It is right there with 'abolish money' and 'let's die to get a few virgins' in terms of the kinds of morons it attracts. It cannot work. But it takes the liberal individualism to its natural extreme. As long as modern conservatism and nationalism are polluted by the sociopathic libertarian ideas, they will keep on failing when confronted by what is after-all a more emphatic mainstream liberalism. Privatising sidewalks and worshipping oligarchs is no way to win an election.

    Replies: @Dmitry, @Grahamsno(G64), @Mark G.

    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.

    Trump was in no way libertarian. Government spending increased under him. The Fed adopted a policy of low interest rates to benefit Wall Street and then bailed them out this year when they got in trouble. He wasn’t a free trader. He did follow a noninterventionist foreign policy but increased, not decreased, military spending. As long as we have a large military, it is likely to lead to future wars because, as Madeline Albright once said, what’s the point of having this superb military if you aren’t going to use it.

    People who label Trump libertarian are doing so for a reason. When his nonlibertarian policies fail, as nonlibertarian policies always do, Trump’s nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government. To win elections, people will say, we need the Republicans to adopt big government policies. You will then have a big government right and a big government left and there will be no brakes on more government spending. This is already happening with trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...Trump’s nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government.
     
    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism and its ability to solve everything without changing any of the building blocks of the current de facto libertarian economy:

    - open borders and a flood of cheap migrants to destroy labor markets for younger people
    - low tax policies that benefit slightly middle class people, but they really benefit the top 0.01% (Bezos made a killing under Trump)
    - increasingly gig economy that simply doesn't account for the need for social services that like health care, pensions, education, etc...

    The celebration and boosterism about the 'best economy ever' cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That's why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.

    The current economy simply doesn't and cannot work for large numbers of mainly younger, not well connected or not-the-right-colour people. That means enough people will say: 'screw it, I am screwed anyway, let the government do it' In this way the sociopathic libertarian policies actually encourage big government. In other words, if Bezos and Co. were not an ass.holes, there would be less political demand for government solutions. But they are ass..oles and unfortunately Trump mostly joined them. That cost him the election.

    trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.
     
    What exactly is the meaning of deficits in an economy based on virtual money? Would Bezos be worth $100 billion if US had real money and not fiat currency dumped at will by the government bank? Think about it, and figure out who the real beneficiaries of deficit spending are.

    Replies: @Mark G.

  49. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I think religions are what has been called "immortality projects".

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego - that element that is "above" your nature directing events - vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China's dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.


    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn't mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to "ingathered" from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Beckow, @AltanBakshi, @AltanBakshi

    In Christianity nations and governments are part of this fallen world, they are not part of heaven, but they definitely are part of this world, read St Augustines De Civitate Dei if you dont believe. He himself says that there is the earthly kingdom or civitate and kingdom of heaven and that they are two different things.

    I have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins.

  50. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I think religions are what has been called "immortality projects".

    Ernest Becker thought civilizations, which all have a religion at their core, are all immortality projects. They are all based on the denial of death.

    All attempts to create meaning and significance in the future, are attempts to transcend death. But if you accept death, you can simply live in the eternal now, like an animal, according to your nature, enjoying what is natural to you, like the old Taoists would have it. Looking at the world without any desire to change it is what many traditions called contemplation, and gives you a glimpse of eternity. Living according to your nature without believing you are a protagonist in a story, your ego - that element that is "above" your nature directing events - vanishes, and you live according to what you naturally enjoy.

    I would say several key ideas in our culture are Enlightenment ideas, and am curious as to which you think are Jewish. The Enlightenment has diverse strands. We are moving away from liberal ideas of freedom and towards ideas of moral and perfectability and rationality displacing primitive emotions, but both are rooted in the Enlightenment. Any program of human perfection through reason is Enlightenment based. Its often forgotten, but National Socialism, Bolshevism, Maoism, were Enlightenment based ideologies, as is current China's dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.


    Anti-nationalism is not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later an Enlightenment idea. Judaism actually thinks distinct nations have distinct roles in the divine plan. Eradication of evil is also not a Jewish idea, but a Christian and later Enlightenment idea. Of course Judaism wants you to live morally, but there is no Satan figure, and the world is not a battleground between the forces of good and the forces of evil, as it is for Christianity and the Enlightenment.

    Tikkun Olam is widely misunderstood. It actually means making the world whole again, by uniting the broken shards of a primordial unity. It doesn't mean eradicating evil. In the Kabalistic system, evil is merely the stern face of God, justice, without the soft face of God, mercy. Tikkun Olam is to unite the two faces of God. Evil is to be integrated into a larger whole, not eradicated. The broken shards of a primordial unity have to "ingathered" from across the world. Judaism is a dialectical religion, while Christianity and Enlightenment are manichean.

    Enlightenment ideology believes in the final eradication of secular evils like poverty, violence, irrationality, etc, and that derives from the Christisn notion of the final triumph of good over evil.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @Beckow, @AltanBakshi, @AltanBakshi

    Like an animal? So like the original cynicists of Diogenes? Cynic literally means dog-like, and Diogenes lived outdoors like an animal, masturbated, urinated, defecated and so on in public, praised the good qualities of dog and even wanted and tried to live like a dog. Theres AaronB a good model for you to follow if you want really to live in the “Now” and naturally! And no more words, do it, just follow your heart and nature! You know what to do!

  51. @AaronB
    @mal

    Interesting thesis. I like it. It points to the fundamental unity underlying multiplicity. Its a nice little myth.

    Transhumsnists are interested in immortality and human perfectability, which are the basic religious themes. Of course there is nothing wrong with being religious.

    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best, but if you can't do that you should certainly join a religion.

    Replies: @SveVid

    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best

    The “living in the Now” philosophy has it’s place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn’t belong to anything bigger.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn’t mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle….one follows the other…

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality….and its wrong…it’s actually a circle

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    @SveVid

    Profoundly boring way of living, too.

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @AaronB
    @SveVid


    The “living in the Now” philosophy has it’s place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn’t belong to anything bigger
     
    .

    Not necessarily. In Taoism and Chan Buddhism, the metaphysical basis for living in the Now is that you are already identical with everything there is, so there is nowhere you need to get to. You are already part of something much bigger than you.

    But yes, living in the Now does mean leaving behind all the collective social and religious goals of mankind, so in that sense its selfish. But if one sees that these old goals are merely deluded immortality projects, that need not be a bad thing.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn’t mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle….one follows the other…

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality….and its wrong…it’s actually a circle
     
    Agreed, accepting death means accepting the death of this ego of mine - this particular story, this particular instantiation of the world soul, so to speak - but death-life forms a unit, and if there is death, there must, as its polar opposite, be life, as opposites mutually arise.

    That is why the fear that there can one day be Nothing, is baseless, because nothing cannot exist without Simething.
  52. @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    The battle is already won, true, but for the time being he is still a terrifying figure.

    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.

    Thats the classic manichean point of view. One side wins.

    In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @AltanBakshi

    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.

    I think I was referring to something different. AFAIK in Christianity there aren’t two aspects of reality, because evil is non-existence or the perverted (destructive) use of things which are in themselves good. This mean that it can’t be integrated into anything and it can’t be a necessary part of anything.

    The terrifying problem, such as it is, is ignorance and alienation from God, leading to the failure to attain true human nature and the purpose of human life. Satan and other devils can play on men’s weakness and deceive them but they don’t represent any kind of force independent from God. On this topic, this is why a film like the Exorcist does not appear to be a Christian film, whereas the film Ostrov on a similar theme, is one (the demon runs tries to run away from the holy monk in Ostrov).

    I would agree that Christianity is not a dialectical religion. I would say current progressivism has a dialectical strand though, and that dialectical strains of it are at the forefront at the moment.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.

    The secular "war" on poverty and racism and death and illness comes from this way of thinking.

    I am curious - how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.

    Replies: @Coconuts

  53. @Blinky Bill
    How many of you can identify the twelve deceased Iranians/Shia? Steve Sailer has written obituaries for all four Americans, so they are easy to identify.

    Replies: @songbird, @Yevardian, @yakushimaru, @yakushimaru

    I noticed you seem to have a thing against Steve Sailer. I never found him at all interesting anyway, but I have seen quite a few people turn on him recently, for whatever reason. To me he seems to be posting the same snarky alt-lite stuff for the ADHD crowd (not that there’s anything wrong with that) he always has.

    • Replies: @Blinky Bill
    @Yevardian

    Thank you Yevardian for such a insightful/inciteful comment. 😄

    Let me start off by saying AK and SS are on very good terms and highly supportive of each others work. Therefore I don't believe this to be the appropriate venue to discuss my opinion of SS. But I will make this anodyne comment!


    I noticed you seem to have a thing against Steve Sailer
     
    This statement is not correct, my opinion of SS is complex and has changed over time. I can proudly say that I'm probably one of the few people who comment here, that have read all SS main works. He clearly is an original thinker with the moral courage to speak his own mind. A trait that is as rare as it is impressive. He also has the ability to explain complex ideas in a simple manner, perhaps this is also a weakness. For he attracts untold numbers of knuckle-draggers as supporters. SS then panders to them with numerous low quality post and articles, half of which I think he struggles to write.

    I don't blame SS for this, a man must eat. I can truthfully say that if I were him, I would do the same! But his works no longer have the same draw they once did for me.

  54. @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    The battle is already won, true, but for the time being he is still a terrifying figure.

    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.

    Thats the classic manichean point of view. One side wins.

    In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other.

    Replies: @Coconuts, @AltanBakshi

    “In dialectical religions, both sides are a necessary part of a larger whole. In Judaism, evil is just the divine quality of justice unsoftened by the divine quality of mercy. In Buddhism and Taoism, ultimate reality transcends good and evil, and both exist in a polar relationship where they define each other rather than oppose each other.”

    Once again you are talking out of your ass. In Buddhism there are things that make people suffer and things that dont make people suffer or are pleasurable, and things that we think that make us suffer, and things that we think are neutral or pleasurable. Its so simple! This metaphysical evil or good stuff is non-sense from a Buddhist point of view.

    Check out tree poisons AaronB! Those three are the roots of Samsaric existence, and true freedom in Buddhist sense is to be free from those three poisons, which twist and stain our cognition, which denies us the possibility to see the world as it is. Thus it can be said that those three poisons are evil in a conventional sense, for they are the root of all painful states.

    Tashi Delek! AaronB-la check out this stuff! Snake, Pig and the Bird, those are the three poisons!

  55. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    When a technology can actually keep you from dying, we don’t call it a “religion.” We call it something more like “effective health care.”

    • Replies: @Kent Nationalist
    @advancedatheist

    When it's just a promise, we call it 'a fantasy'

  56. If you had an equity mutual fund, you probably would not call neoliberalism a bad thing.

  57. And whatever its moral effects, neoliberalism and lowered trade barriers had clearly led to billions of people in the third world in places like China and India, plus Asia a lot better off financially than if rich countries had sharply restricted people, trade, and capital flows to and from the third world. Say, if American and European companies were not allowed to move capital to build factories in China, or if the US decided to ban Japanese imports in 1955.

  58. @Blinky Bill
    How many of you can identify the twelve deceased Iranians/Shia? Steve Sailer has written obituaries for all four Americans, so they are easy to identify.

    Replies: @songbird, @Yevardian, @yakushimaru, @yakushimaru

    I know one of the black men is e.e. cummings. :-p

    And Khomeni is the rightmost one.

  59. @advancedatheist
    @AaronB


    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.
     
    When a technology can actually keep you from dying, we don't call it a "religion." We call it something more like "effective health care."

    Replies: @Kent Nationalist

    When it’s just a promise, we call it ‘a fantasy’

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
  60. @Blinky Bill
    How many of you can identify the twelve deceased Iranians/Shia? Steve Sailer has written obituaries for all four Americans, so they are easy to identify.

    Replies: @songbird, @Yevardian, @yakushimaru, @yakushimaru

    I know one of the black men is e.e. cummings. :-p

    And Khomeni is the rightmost one.

  61. Somehow I posted the same comment twice.

    Recently the CDN service used by Unz (Is that cloudflare?) began to block access from China. It is kind of depressing.

    I believe it was in 2016 when some conservative websites began to block access from China. I even wrote to one of the owners to complain at the time, but they obviously thought it was justified.

    So depressing. It makes coming here quite a hassle.

    And the weird auto capitalization of words in the comment box.

    • Replies: @128
    @yakushimaru

    Well, how much do the posts of the Chinese posters here represent the opinions of "real" China anyway, basically the Chinese version of the blue-collar Trump voter from the smaller Tier 3 and 4 cities from the interior provinces that people have to resort to Google to find out even basic knowledge of? I mean any Chinese posters that has enough knowledge of English to post in a forum like this is most likely basically the Chinese version of the suburban never-Trump Republican or Biden voter, basically a highly-educated cosmopolitan white-collar type of person who lives in the big cities. Basically, the Chinese version of the rural Trump voter does not know enough English to post in a forum like this.

    Replies: @yakushimaru, @Svevlad

  62. @yakushimaru
    Somehow I posted the same comment twice.

    Recently the CDN service used by Unz (Is that cloudflare?) began to block access from China. It is kind of depressing.

    I believe it was in 2016 when some conservative websites began to block access from China. I even wrote to one of the owners to complain at the time, but they obviously thought it was justified.

    So depressing. It makes coming here quite a hassle.

    And the weird auto capitalization of words in the comment box.

    Replies: @128

    Well, how much do the posts of the Chinese posters here represent the opinions of “real” China anyway, basically the Chinese version of the blue-collar Trump voter from the smaller Tier 3 and 4 cities from the interior provinces that people have to resort to Google to find out even basic knowledge of? I mean any Chinese posters that has enough knowledge of English to post in a forum like this is most likely basically the Chinese version of the suburban never-Trump Republican or Biden voter, basically a highly-educated cosmopolitan white-collar type of person who lives in the big cities. Basically, the Chinese version of the rural Trump voter does not know enough English to post in a forum like this.

    • Replies: @yakushimaru
    @128

    This is a fringe website for sure. I just do not like the categorical blockade from the US side given esp. that there are constant jeering about Unz.com not being able to exist in China for it is such a bad country.

    , @Svevlad
    @128

    in most cases it seems that the ones who are "internet literate" enough to get here are unspeakable soyadeen - there are exceptions though. This "netizen" class in Serbia for example is 50/50 soy (mostly older millennials) while the other half are fierce nationalists

  63. Basically some blue-collar or even white-collar office workers from cities like Mudanjiang, Mianyang, or Dezhou.

  64. @Beckow
    @AaronB

    You hide behind theology, good, evil, manicheanism, categories that mean different things to different people at different times. What matters is how we live, what we get out of life. The theology stuff is a distraction, an attempt to obfuscate the obvious.

    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn't bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and - as always - taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.


    ...current China’s dream of the surveillance state, the panopticon, and mass social engineering and control.
     
    I don't know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye... (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.

    There are a lot of bad ideas that originated in Christianity, so what? There are also some good ones. The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state - sooner or later the people wise up. For one reason or another a lot of Secular Judaism, especially after WWII, has seen any nation-state (other than their own) as a potential threat. So you get the NY Times ideology that roughly corresponds to what the elites are trying to implement in the world. Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less 'elite'.

    Replies: @AaronB

    I’m not hiding behind theology, I’m just saying that the current ideas we live by are not Jewish religious ideas made secular. The Enlightenment is Christian ideas made secular.

    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn’t bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and – as always – taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.

    Okay, but none of these are Jewish ideas. Capitalism was developed intellectually by a slew of brilliant Enhlish writers, but was pioneered by Italian Renaissance states like Venice, which were merchant oligarchies.

    But ok, Jews did do very well under capitalism, but there is nothing in the Jewish religion about that. But how is anything goes personal liberty Jewish? Or taking care of an insider elite that is exempt from rules? (That seems rather common to all societies, unfortunately).

    I understood secular Judaism to mean Jewish religious ideas translated into a secular context. For instance, in Christianity there is supposed to be a supernatural redemption. The Enlightenment made that into a secular redemption through science. I dont see a similar process with Jewish ideas.

    don’t know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye… (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.

    Absolutely, China is modeling itself on a Western philosophy. Its exists in the West, its just more advanced in China. And China has explicitly adopted this philosophy without controversy at the state level, while its still controversial in the West and applied in a more piecemeal fashion. But we may yet evolve to China’s level of authoritarian control, if people like Ron Unz have their way, and we are trending in that direction.

    Still, as of now the panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.

    The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state – sooner or later the people wise up

    .

    I would say, the main driving force is the Enlightenment ideal of creating rational man without primitive attachments, and to abolish conflict and war. War was endemic to Europe, and was seen as rooted in nationalistic attachments. The two world wars were absolutely catastrophic, and were seen as the culmination of nationalism.

    As I said elsewhere, until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare, there will be widespread opposition to it, because modern technology has the potential to destroy human civilization. This is a serious concern that is just ignored by nationalists. I myself am sympathetic to nationalism, but this issue must be addressed. For instance, the Austro-Hunfarian empire kept the peace between various groups, who descended into vicious warfare the moment they became independent nations. Its hard not to conclude an empire, scaled up globally, is better for peace.

    Without question, business interests saw they could benefit from this in the form of cheap labor at home and abroad, but they did not lead this movement.

    Again, I do not see how this is a Jewish idea made secular.

    As far as I understand your argument, you are saying Jews benefited from capitalism and globalism, so you call them secular Judaism. But Jews did not create these trends, and they are not characteristic ideas of the Jewish religion. A whole host of groups benefited from these trends, and they were developed by European philosophers and implemented by European elites.

    Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less ‘elite‘.

    That’s not necessarily true. Elites may be more elite within their nation than in a global system. It just depends on particular circumstances. The Chinese elites are not benevolent, they ruthlessly exploit their people. Its just that for the moment, their particular economic circumstances allow them to be more elite in a nationalistic context.

    Assuming your idea that elites will always further and defend their status is correct, they will choose whatever system is best for that. So nationalistic elites are that way because it best preserves their status.

    However, I am wary of reducing all human behavior to considerations of efficiency, because I think ideology plays a very real role, and ideology can lead to very inefficient behavior. And ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.
     
    The massive surveillance is also a way of life in the West and the population is largely ok with it. You see the distracting noise of meaningless controversy, because it has been a Western cultural tradition to allow unhappy dogs to bark, it changes nothing.

    ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.
     
    I agree with your elevated explanation, but there is also greed. In life ideology and greed always combine: ideology triggers greed and greed facilitates ideology. The current liberalism is largely carried by Secular Judaism, as nicely represented by NY Times, their priorities and goals are identical and the main proponents tend to be disproportionally secular Jews.

    In the past there was a complex interplay of native liberalism with Christianity and the dominant carriers were Anglos, but that is no longer the case. After WWII the tide has shifted. Today we live in an era of peak liberalism and the difference between what rules over us and NY Times (=the acknowledged voice of Secular Judaism) is non-existent. I am less concerned to what extent it came from the actual Jewish religious tradition; religions are very broad and one can find almost anything in them.

    The fact that libertarian, globalist capitalism has been good for the Jews adds the inevitable element of greed. For a long time it was also very good for the Anglo and French upper classes, I am not sure that is true anymore and we see a shift to the second-tier status for most of them.

    One thing you are I have agreed on is the idiocy of reducing life to 'efficiency'. And an ever expanding increase in 'efficiency' is at the heart of liberalism or libertarianism. Sometimes with a dose of empathy, but increasingly not. That is an existential cul-de-sac and systems seldom manage to remain at their peak for too long. We are living through peak liberalism - almost everywhere - so the inevitable unraveling cannot be that far off.

    , @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare
     
    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing 'regimes', dead people and destroyed societies everywhere - and none of it had anything to do with 'nationalism'.

    It turns out that people will fight wars when they think they get something out of it, national aggrandisement being only one of many reasons. People mostly fight wars if they can, if there is no possibility of them personally suffering - so on we go from demented Allbright, through Cheney ('Nice, it had to be done."), Obama with his Nobel Price, and so on... Can national states with defined sovereignty really be worse?

    Replies: @dfordoom, @AaronB

  65. @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption
     
    This is more of a calvinist heresy, than how Christians traditionally thought. Christs kingdom is not of this world, its beyond this fallen world, but every Christiam can by faith and through good works enter to that everlasting and perfect kingdom. But I have already once mentioned this to you.

    People of the Middle Ages even believed that their world is slowly dying and decaying, that they were born when the world was old. It was totally different view of progress than that of englightenment philosophers.

    What sins men have made that such gross heresy as calvinism could rise and live? And that many even now think that its mistaken and deluded beliefs are somehow normative in Christianity.

    Replies: @AaronB

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.

    have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins

    .

    Yes, Judaism is actually very hard on the Jews. Its not just daddy’s special boy who can do no wrong.

    The good thing about this idea, is that it saves us from self-defeating follies like antisemitism, where you blame all your problems on someone else, which is a natural tendency of the human mind. It prevents scapegoating and puts responsibility on ourselves, where we can actually do something about it.

    Many Jews are becoming secular and leaving the religion, but the idea that some outside group is manipulating us, like the antisemites think, would never take root in the Jewish community.

    The idea that our misfortunes are our own fault, leads to a kind of self respect and sturdy independence. We definitely acknowledge when someone hurt us or is our enemy, but the kind of self image the antisemite has, as a helpless victim, is not consistent with Jewish self respect, based on the idea that we are authors of our own fate in an ultimate way (God letting others hurt us is punishment for our sins)

    ——

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.

    The problem with Cynicism is that it is too “in your face” – it tries to outrage society, so is ultimately still bound by it.

    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn’t live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don’t even know what we like, we have to discover it.

    —–

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.

    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.
     
    Its an utmost importance to have a good translation and not such shitty halfly cooked wastepaper.
    The Awakened Ones dont discriminate phenomena to good, bad or neutral like we Samsaric beings do. How I can convey this crucial and important philosophical point to you?

    Samsaric mind works by thinking that some things are pleasant and desirable, and that some things arent comfortable and should be avoided or averted, Buddhas see through the impermanent nature of such phenomena, and are not under the carrot and stick of the external and internal phenomenas of Samsara, which conditionalizes us and keeps us as prisoners of cyclic existence.

    If your discriminating awareness would work, you would right away understand that words like good and bad are too vague for precise definition of Buddhist philosophical ideas in this context and cant convey the meaning properly. Its very important to choose well translated book. First Rule: never ever read Buddhist books translated from Japanese to English. You should understand that if you translate Buddhist philosophy from Sanskrit to Chinese to Japanese to English, is a leap too far! Especially when keeping in mind the extremely sectarian and conflictive nature of Japanese Buddhism, where every school has its own understanding of important concepts.

    Second rule: Its often no good to read old translations of Buddhist books, they have too much cultural baggage and misconceptions of Buddhist ideas. There are some good late 19th century translators, but its mainly Theravada stuff. Rhys Davids is good one from that time period, I recommend his books heartily.

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.
     
    A grave misunderstanding, depends on ones motivation, if one does good deeds, but does because of self-interest, like for ones family or something like that, then yes one is still chained in the Samsara. Only genuine altruism can and will liberate one from Samsara.

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.
     
    Still they believe that this world is fallen and can only be saved through divine intervention at the worlds end, which will happen when Christ will himself return to this Earth in bodily form. So theres a difference between Judaistic belief that Messiah, who is not God, will come and create the perfect society led by the Jews.

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.
     
    That story is completely apocryphical. You just dont have balls to really live according to your ideals.

    Not necessarily. In Taoism and Chan Buddhism, the metaphysical basis for living in the Now is that you are already identical with everything there is, so there is nowhere you need to get to. You are already part of something much bigger than you.
     
    Quite odd that Chan Buddhism and Mahayana deny the Monistic philosophy. Once again you and your lies, oh sorry I mean delusions... yes Aaron maybe its nice to take some shrooms and think that you are one with everything else, but Aaron its not Buddhism.... and it will never be....

    Replies: @AaronB

    , @BlackFlag
    @AaronB


    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn’t live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don’t even know what we like, we have to discover it.
     
    Seems like the nature of humans is to live for a purpose that transcends their own finite life. Why do you advise fighting this nature by living in the Now?
  66. @Almost Missouri
    @Carlo

    What Shortsword said. And Lewis and Cummings aren't even really that famous inside the US . Most Americans don't recognize them and if they do, they often can't tell them apart, and if they can, they usually can't tell you why you should think well of either of them.

    So in other words, they are Affirmative Action Saints.

    Replies: @Carlo

    So in other words, they are Affirmative Action Saints.

    Thanks. That explains why they are in “Libs Heaven”.

  67. @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    But the point is, that there was a battle, between two aspects of reality so to speak, and that one side of reality is supposed to have won. Evil is an independent force, not part of a whole, and not ultimately integratable into the whole as a necessary part.
     
    I think I was referring to something different. AFAIK in Christianity there aren't two aspects of reality, because evil is non-existence or the perverted (destructive) use of things which are in themselves good. This mean that it can't be integrated into anything and it can't be a necessary part of anything.

    The terrifying problem, such as it is, is ignorance and alienation from God, leading to the failure to attain true human nature and the purpose of human life. Satan and other devils can play on men's weakness and deceive them but they don't represent any kind of force independent from God. On this topic, this is why a film like the Exorcist does not appear to be a Christian film, whereas the film Ostrov on a similar theme, is one (the demon runs tries to run away from the holy monk in Ostrov).

    I would agree that Christianity is not a dialectical religion. I would say current progressivism has a dialectical strand though, and that dialectical strains of it are at the forefront at the moment.

    Replies: @AaronB

    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.

    The secular “war” on poverty and racism and death and illness comes from this way of thinking.

    I am curious – how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.

    • Replies: @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.
     
    As I was saying evil is an absence of being i.e. it is nothing, so it can't be made part of a larger whole. Elimination of evil would be maximising the level of being of things so that they fulfill their nature completely. Created beings always desire and act to try to maximise their own perfection; with background assumptions like this in place it is hard to make sense of it being necessary for things not to do this and persist in imperfect states relative to their natures.

    Manicheans believed that evil was a kind of being, for example I think they thought all material things were evil, and that good and evil types of being were at war, this is why I wasn't sure I followed the point you were making.

    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God's mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God's justice, which is the same thing as God's wisdom, which is the same thing as God's goodness and so on.


    I am curious – how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.
     
    In this way:

    Thesis: Whiteness (i.e. Whiteness is a system of power for progressives)
    Antithesis: Blackness
    Synthesis: Diversity of narratives and systems; the post-racial future.

    Thesis: Masculinity
    Antithesis: Femininity
    Synthesis: Universal Queerness

    I think this is probably some kind of latent inheritance from Marxist dialectical materialism, but progressives seem to be obsessed with breaking down binary oppositions.

    Replies: @AaronB, @AltanBakshi

  68. @SveVid
    @AaronB


    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best
     
    The "living in the Now" philosophy has it's place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn't belong to anything bigger.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn't mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle....one follows the other...

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality....and its wrong...it's actually a circle

    Replies: @Daniel Chieh, @AaronB

    Profoundly boring way of living, too.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Daniel Chieh

    Instead of dreaming of future perfection, living in the Now leaves you free to enjoy all the varied excitements and pleasures of life.

    But if your Now is boring, then yes, not working towards a better future will leave you with nothing but your boredom. That logically follows.

    However, some traditions think that your Now is experienced as boring because you are focused on the future. That losing future orientation leads to experiencing the Now as satisfying and mysterious.

    But if you cant learn to find satisfaction in the Now, then you should certainly focus on the future, or take up a religion (the same thing, really). You won't find satisfaction there either, but you will at least be distracted from your unhappiness.

    Unlike moralists, I am not attacking distraction - distraction may be the wisest counsel for those who can't endure the present, and it can be said that nearly all of mankinds frenetic activity is a form of distraction.

    Not everyone can handle living without consolation, and its silly to try and be a superman and go against your nature. I am built in such a way that I experience giving up consolations as exhilirating and freeing, and I find hopes, expectations, and consolations as imprisoning. But others are built in such a way that they prefer security to the joy of freedom, and thats a perfectly legitimate choice. Such people should take up a religion - it can be one of the traditional ones, or a modern secular one like transhumsnism or progressivism. Traditional ones, with rituals, are best imo.

    But there is a path and a Way that suits everyone's nature.

    Replies: @Daniel Chieh

  69. @SveVid
    @AaronB


    I think accepting death and finding life just as it is enough is best
     
    The "living in the Now" philosophy has it's place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn't belong to anything bigger.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn't mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle....one follows the other...

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality....and its wrong...it's actually a circle

    Replies: @Daniel Chieh, @AaronB

    The “living in the Now” philosophy has it’s place and uses, but it can only really work if you only see yourself as an isolated individual who doesn’t belong to anything bigger

    .

    Not necessarily. In Taoism and Chan Buddhism, the metaphysical basis for living in the Now is that you are already identical with everything there is, so there is nowhere you need to get to. You are already part of something much bigger than you.

    But yes, living in the Now does mean leaving behind all the collective social and religious goals of mankind, so in that sense its selfish. But if one sees that these old goals are merely deluded immortality projects, that need not be a bad thing.

    Accepting the death of the individual doesn’t mean life ends. Life-Death is a endless cycle….one follows the other…

    The linear view of reality ending in Death (Armaggedon) is indeed the Jewish view of reality….and its wrong…it’s actually a circle

    Agreed, accepting death means accepting the death of this ego of mine – this particular story, this particular instantiation of the world soul, so to speak – but death-life forms a unit, and if there is death, there must, as its polar opposite, be life, as opposites mutually arise.

    That is why the fear that there can one day be Nothing, is baseless, because nothing cannot exist without Simething.

  70. @Daniel Chieh
    @SveVid

    Profoundly boring way of living, too.

    Replies: @AaronB

    Instead of dreaming of future perfection, living in the Now leaves you free to enjoy all the varied excitements and pleasures of life.

    But if your Now is boring, then yes, not working towards a better future will leave you with nothing but your boredom. That logically follows.

    However, some traditions think that your Now is experienced as boring because you are focused on the future. That losing future orientation leads to experiencing the Now as satisfying and mysterious.

    But if you cant learn to find satisfaction in the Now, then you should certainly focus on the future, or take up a religion (the same thing, really). You won’t find satisfaction there either, but you will at least be distracted from your unhappiness.

    Unlike moralists, I am not attacking distraction – distraction may be the wisest counsel for those who can’t endure the present, and it can be said that nearly all of mankinds frenetic activity is a form of distraction.

    Not everyone can handle living without consolation, and its silly to try and be a superman and go against your nature. I am built in such a way that I experience giving up consolations as exhilirating and freeing, and I find hopes, expectations, and consolations as imprisoning. But others are built in such a way that they prefer security to the joy of freedom, and thats a perfectly legitimate choice. Such people should take up a religion – it can be one of the traditional ones, or a modern secular one like transhumsnism or progressivism. Traditional ones, with rituals, are best imo.

    But there is a path and a Way that suits everyone’s nature.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    @AaronB

    I can't wait until there's a path that involves you actually living up to your words and donating your worldly possessions to Mr. Karlin, but most likely you'll just continue prattling about your mental issues as if they are some form of wisdom.

  71. @128
    @yakushimaru

    Well, how much do the posts of the Chinese posters here represent the opinions of "real" China anyway, basically the Chinese version of the blue-collar Trump voter from the smaller Tier 3 and 4 cities from the interior provinces that people have to resort to Google to find out even basic knowledge of? I mean any Chinese posters that has enough knowledge of English to post in a forum like this is most likely basically the Chinese version of the suburban never-Trump Republican or Biden voter, basically a highly-educated cosmopolitan white-collar type of person who lives in the big cities. Basically, the Chinese version of the rural Trump voter does not know enough English to post in a forum like this.

    Replies: @yakushimaru, @Svevlad

    This is a fringe website for sure. I just do not like the categorical blockade from the US side given esp. that there are constant jeering about Unz.com not being able to exist in China for it is such a bad country.

    • Thanks: Blinky Bill
  72. @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.


    have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins
     
    .

    Yes, Judaism is actually very hard on the Jews. Its not just daddy's special boy who can do no wrong.

    The good thing about this idea, is that it saves us from self-defeating follies like antisemitism, where you blame all your problems on someone else, which is a natural tendency of the human mind. It prevents scapegoating and puts responsibility on ourselves, where we can actually do something about it.

    Many Jews are becoming secular and leaving the religion, but the idea that some outside group is manipulating us, like the antisemites think, would never take root in the Jewish community.

    The idea that our misfortunes are our own fault, leads to a kind of self respect and sturdy independence. We definitely acknowledge when someone hurt us or is our enemy, but the kind of self image the antisemite has, as a helpless victim, is not consistent with Jewish self respect, based on the idea that we are authors of our own fate in an ultimate way (God letting others hurt us is punishment for our sins)

    ------

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.

    The problem with Cynicism is that it is too "in your face" - it tries to outrage society, so is ultimately still bound by it.

    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn't live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don't even know what we like, we have to discover it.

    -----

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.

    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @BlackFlag

    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.

    Its an utmost importance to have a good translation and not such shitty halfly cooked wastepaper.
    The Awakened Ones dont discriminate phenomena to good, bad or neutral like we Samsaric beings do. How I can convey this crucial and important philosophical point to you?

    Samsaric mind works by thinking that some things are pleasant and desirable, and that some things arent comfortable and should be avoided or averted, Buddhas see through the impermanent nature of such phenomena, and are not under the carrot and stick of the external and internal phenomenas of Samsara, which conditionalizes us and keeps us as prisoners of cyclic existence.

    If your discriminating awareness would work, you would right away understand that words like good and bad are too vague for precise definition of Buddhist philosophical ideas in this context and cant convey the meaning properly. Its very important to choose well translated book. First Rule: never ever read Buddhist books translated from Japanese to English. You should understand that if you translate Buddhist philosophy from Sanskrit to Chinese to Japanese to English, is a leap too far! Especially when keeping in mind the extremely sectarian and conflictive nature of Japanese Buddhism, where every school has its own understanding of important concepts.

    Second rule: Its often no good to read old translations of Buddhist books, they have too much cultural baggage and misconceptions of Buddhist ideas. There are some good late 19th century translators, but its mainly Theravada stuff. Rhys Davids is good one from that time period, I recommend his books heartily.

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.

    A grave misunderstanding, depends on ones motivation, if one does good deeds, but does because of self-interest, like for ones family or something like that, then yes one is still chained in the Samsara. Only genuine altruism can and will liberate one from Samsara.

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.

    Still they believe that this world is fallen and can only be saved through divine intervention at the worlds end, which will happen when Christ will himself return to this Earth in bodily form. So theres a difference between Judaistic belief that Messiah, who is not God, will come and create the perfect society led by the Jews.

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.

    That story is completely apocryphical. You just dont have balls to really live according to your ideals.

    Not necessarily. In Taoism and Chan Buddhism, the metaphysical basis for living in the Now is that you are already identical with everything there is, so there is nowhere you need to get to. You are already part of something much bigger than you.

    Quite odd that Chan Buddhism and Mahayana deny the Monistic philosophy. Once again you and your lies, oh sorry I mean delusions… yes Aaron maybe its nice to take some shrooms and think that you are one with everything else, but Aaron its not Buddhism…. and it will never be….

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi

    Some versions of Buddhism for what you say, and i should really be more clear that I am talking about Chan.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-


    The Great Way is not difficult
    for those who have no preferences.
    When love and hate are both absent
    everything becomes clear and undisguised.
    Make the smallest distinction, however,
    and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart.
    If you wish to see the truth
    then hold no opinions for or against anything.
    To set up what you like against what you dislike
    is the disease of the mind.

    Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject
    that we do not see the true nature of things.

    When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
    your very effort fills you with activity.

    The more you talk and think about it,
    the further astray you wander from the truth.
    Stop talking and thinking,
    and there is nothing you will not be able to know.

    Do not search for the truth;
    only cease to cherish opinions.

    To live in the Great Way
    is neither easy nor difficult,
    but those with limited views
    are fearful and irresolute;
    the faster they hurry, the slower they go,
    and clinging cannot be limited;
    even to be attached to the idea of enlightenment
    is to go astray.
    Just let things be in their own way,
    and there will be neither coming nor going.

    Obey the nature of things [your own nature],
    and you will walk freely and undisturbed.
    When thought is in bondage the truth is hidden,
    for everything is murky and unclear,
    and the burdensome practice of judging
    brings annoyance and weariness.
    What benefits can be derived
    from distinctions and separations?
    If you wish to move in the One Way,
    do not dislike even the world of senses and ideas.
    Indeed, to accept them fully
    is identical with true Enlightenment.
    The wise man strives to no goals
    but the foolish man fetters himself.
    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.

    To seek Mind with the mind
    is the greatest of all mistakes.

    Rest and unrest derive from illusion;
    with enlightenment there is no liking and disliking.
    All dualities come from ignorant inference.
    They are like dreams or flowers in the air:
    foolish to try to grasp them.
    Gain and loss, right and wrong:
    such thoughts must finally be abolished at once.

    One thing, all things:
    move among and intermingle,
    without distinction.
    To live in this realization
    is to be without anxiety about non-perfection.

     

    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.

    The point is, any motivated action is karmic action, because it is self seeking. Being good as part of a religious path is self seeking behavior, it is a form of attachment, and thus it binds you to the world of Samsara.

    But again, there are versions of Buddhism that are like what you say.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

  73. @128
    @yakushimaru

    Well, how much do the posts of the Chinese posters here represent the opinions of "real" China anyway, basically the Chinese version of the blue-collar Trump voter from the smaller Tier 3 and 4 cities from the interior provinces that people have to resort to Google to find out even basic knowledge of? I mean any Chinese posters that has enough knowledge of English to post in a forum like this is most likely basically the Chinese version of the suburban never-Trump Republican or Biden voter, basically a highly-educated cosmopolitan white-collar type of person who lives in the big cities. Basically, the Chinese version of the rural Trump voter does not know enough English to post in a forum like this.

    Replies: @yakushimaru, @Svevlad

    in most cases it seems that the ones who are “internet literate” enough to get here are unspeakable soyadeen – there are exceptions though. This “netizen” class in Serbia for example is 50/50 soy (mostly older millennials) while the other half are fierce nationalists

  74. @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    The dirty truth about Trump and most so called right-wing pro-business nationalists is that they are libertarian, meaning classical liberals in the 19th century sense.
     
    Trump was in no way libertarian. Government spending increased under him. The Fed adopted a policy of low interest rates to benefit Wall Street and then bailed them out this year when they got in trouble. He wasn't a free trader. He did follow a noninterventionist foreign policy but increased, not decreased, military spending. As long as we have a large military, it is likely to lead to future wars because, as Madeline Albright once said, what's the point of having this superb military if you aren't going to use it.

    People who label Trump libertarian are doing so for a reason. When his nonlibertarian policies fail, as nonlibertarian policies always do, Trump's nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government. To win elections, people will say, we need the Republicans to adopt big government policies. You will then have a big government right and a big government left and there will be no brakes on more government spending. This is already happening with trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.

    Replies: @Beckow

    …Trump’s nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government.

    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism and its ability to solve everything without changing any of the building blocks of the current de facto libertarian economy:

    – open borders and a flood of cheap migrants to destroy labor markets for younger people
    – low tax policies that benefit slightly middle class people, but they really benefit the top 0.01% (Bezos made a killing under Trump)
    – increasingly gig economy that simply doesn’t account for the need for social services that like health care, pensions, education, etc…

    The celebration and boosterism about the ‘best economy ever‘ cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That’s why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.

    The current economy simply doesn’t and cannot work for large numbers of mainly younger, not well connected or not-the-right-colour people. That means enough people will say: ‘screw it, I am screwed anyway, let the government do it’ In this way the sociopathic libertarian policies actually encourage big government. In other words, if Bezos and Co. were not an ass.holes, there would be less political demand for government solutions. But they are ass..oles and unfortunately Trump mostly joined them. That cost him the election.

    trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.

    What exactly is the meaning of deficits in an economy based on virtual money? Would Bezos be worth $100 billion if US had real money and not fiat currency dumped at will by the government bank? Think about it, and figure out who the real beneficiaries of deficit spending are.

    • Replies: @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism ...
     
    You don't have a very good understanding of libertarianism. Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street and wealthy people who own a lot of stocks while not helping the average person. The Federal Reserve didn't even exist in the 19th century so Trump isn't following 19th century policies in this case.

    The celebration and boosterism about the ‘best economy ever‘ cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That’s why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.
     
    Trump lost because he followed pro-Wall Street policies, as I said above, and because he funneled even more money to the already bloated military. He also lost because he pandered to blacks by promising to direct more government money to them with his Platinum Plan. There was no Platinum Plan for working class whites. Trump cut taxes but he didn't have matching spending cuts so that just means there will be higher taxes in the future when we have to pay back the money we borrowed to make up the difference. None of these Trump policies are libertarian.

    Replies: @Beckow

  75. @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.
     
    Its an utmost importance to have a good translation and not such shitty halfly cooked wastepaper.
    The Awakened Ones dont discriminate phenomena to good, bad or neutral like we Samsaric beings do. How I can convey this crucial and important philosophical point to you?

    Samsaric mind works by thinking that some things are pleasant and desirable, and that some things arent comfortable and should be avoided or averted, Buddhas see through the impermanent nature of such phenomena, and are not under the carrot and stick of the external and internal phenomenas of Samsara, which conditionalizes us and keeps us as prisoners of cyclic existence.

    If your discriminating awareness would work, you would right away understand that words like good and bad are too vague for precise definition of Buddhist philosophical ideas in this context and cant convey the meaning properly. Its very important to choose well translated book. First Rule: never ever read Buddhist books translated from Japanese to English. You should understand that if you translate Buddhist philosophy from Sanskrit to Chinese to Japanese to English, is a leap too far! Especially when keeping in mind the extremely sectarian and conflictive nature of Japanese Buddhism, where every school has its own understanding of important concepts.

    Second rule: Its often no good to read old translations of Buddhist books, they have too much cultural baggage and misconceptions of Buddhist ideas. There are some good late 19th century translators, but its mainly Theravada stuff. Rhys Davids is good one from that time period, I recommend his books heartily.

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.
     
    A grave misunderstanding, depends on ones motivation, if one does good deeds, but does because of self-interest, like for ones family or something like that, then yes one is still chained in the Samsara. Only genuine altruism can and will liberate one from Samsara.

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.
     
    Still they believe that this world is fallen and can only be saved through divine intervention at the worlds end, which will happen when Christ will himself return to this Earth in bodily form. So theres a difference between Judaistic belief that Messiah, who is not God, will come and create the perfect society led by the Jews.

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.
     
    That story is completely apocryphical. You just dont have balls to really live according to your ideals.

    Not necessarily. In Taoism and Chan Buddhism, the metaphysical basis for living in the Now is that you are already identical with everything there is, so there is nowhere you need to get to. You are already part of something much bigger than you.
     
    Quite odd that Chan Buddhism and Mahayana deny the Monistic philosophy. Once again you and your lies, oh sorry I mean delusions... yes Aaron maybe its nice to take some shrooms and think that you are one with everything else, but Aaron its not Buddhism.... and it will never be....

    Replies: @AaronB

    Some versions of Buddhism for what you say, and i should really be more clear that I am talking about Chan.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-

    The Great Way is not difficult
    for those who have no preferences.
    When love and hate are both absent
    everything becomes clear and undisguised.
    Make the smallest distinction, however,
    and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart.
    If you wish to see the truth
    then hold no opinions for or against anything.
    To set up what you like against what you dislike
    is the disease of the mind.

    Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject
    that we do not see the true nature of things.

    When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
    your very effort fills you with activity.

    The more you talk and think about it,
    the further astray you wander from the truth.
    Stop talking and thinking,
    and there is nothing you will not be able to know.

    Do not search for the truth;
    only cease to cherish opinions.

    To live in the Great Way
    is neither easy nor difficult,
    but those with limited views
    are fearful and irresolute;
    the faster they hurry, the slower they go,
    and clinging cannot be limited;
    even to be attached to the idea of enlightenment
    is to go astray.
    Just let things be in their own way,
    and there will be neither coming nor going.

    Obey the nature of things [your own nature],
    and you will walk freely and undisturbed.
    When thought is in bondage the truth is hidden,
    for everything is murky and unclear,
    and the burdensome practice of judging
    brings annoyance and weariness.
    What benefits can be derived
    from distinctions and separations?
    If you wish to move in the One Way,
    do not dislike even the world of senses and ideas.
    Indeed, to accept them fully
    is identical with true Enlightenment.
    The wise man strives to no goals
    but the foolish man fetters himself.
    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.

    To seek Mind with the mind
    is the greatest of all mistakes.

    Rest and unrest derive from illusion;
    with enlightenment there is no liking and disliking.
    All dualities come from ignorant inference.
    They are like dreams or flowers in the air:
    foolish to try to grasp them.
    Gain and loss, right and wrong:
    such thoughts must finally be abolished at once.

    One thing, all things:
    move among and intermingle,
    without distinction.
    To live in this realization
    is to be without anxiety about non-perfection.

    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.

    The point is, any motivated action is karmic action, because it is self seeking. Being good as part of a religious path is self seeking behavior, it is a form of attachment, and thus it binds you to the world of Samsara.

    But again, there are versions of Buddhism that are like what you say.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.
     
    Who has claimed anything else? By becoming Buddha we have the best possible capability to help sentient beings. Soon you say that Bodhisattvas stay in Samsara, yes because gaining Buddhahood is different from the state of Arhat who abides in Nirvana. Buddhas go beyond Nirvana and help forever sentient beings, this is the view of Mahayana, but Hinayanas have somewhat different view.

    By helping others we help ourselves, by helping ourselves we help others, there is ultimately no difference for a truly altruistic mind.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-
     
    Its extremely hard to translate from the Classical Chinese and to convey properly the precise and the profound meaning to English language. Your translation is made by some guy named Richard B. Clarke, who died couple years ago and I cant even find his lineage of Dharma transmission.
    https://www.livingdharmacenter.org/rc1.html
    Seems that he was follower of Japanese style Buddhism, I cant even find which sect of Japanese Buddhism, but no matter, he probably in all likelihood translated the poem by using Japanese Buddhist manuals or commentaries.

    Here on this site there are about 30 translations of Xinxin Ming
    https://terebess.hu/english/hsin.html
    They differ quite much from each other. I think that its extremely hard to translate Classical Chinese texts from the time of the Sui and Tang dynasties to modern English, and I think that our Chinese posters here on this site also share my opinion.

    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.
     
    Still even this translation of dubious origins does not claim that all is one or that reality is somehow monistic. Yes there is only one Dharma, quite basic stuff in Buddhism, does it in your mind somehow mean that all is one or something?

    Replies: @AaronB

  76. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    This down in the blockquote does not work (is not free of performative self-contradiction) because there is no such a thing as living for the moment without having a philosophy (= a plan to do so) in the first place.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    I could have also put it this way: Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s ideas were not naive (= natural), but rather – elaborated results of a long line of predecessors in the European and Middle Eastern history of thoughts.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Dieter Kief

    If you like, we can call it the philosophy of no-philosophy.

    But you are quite correct it is only arrived at by a process of thought. Wittgenstein said the purpose of philosophy is to deconstruct philosophy. This is similar to Buddhism.

    By the time we reach adulthood, we have implanted in us all sorts of ideas that are part of our culture. The true task of philosophy, and Buddhism, is to get rid of all that abd live naturally.

    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.

    Replies: @Dieter Kief, @Mr. Hack

  77. @AaronB
    @Daniel Chieh

    Instead of dreaming of future perfection, living in the Now leaves you free to enjoy all the varied excitements and pleasures of life.

    But if your Now is boring, then yes, not working towards a better future will leave you with nothing but your boredom. That logically follows.

    However, some traditions think that your Now is experienced as boring because you are focused on the future. That losing future orientation leads to experiencing the Now as satisfying and mysterious.

    But if you cant learn to find satisfaction in the Now, then you should certainly focus on the future, or take up a religion (the same thing, really). You won't find satisfaction there either, but you will at least be distracted from your unhappiness.

    Unlike moralists, I am not attacking distraction - distraction may be the wisest counsel for those who can't endure the present, and it can be said that nearly all of mankinds frenetic activity is a form of distraction.

    Not everyone can handle living without consolation, and its silly to try and be a superman and go against your nature. I am built in such a way that I experience giving up consolations as exhilirating and freeing, and I find hopes, expectations, and consolations as imprisoning. But others are built in such a way that they prefer security to the joy of freedom, and thats a perfectly legitimate choice. Such people should take up a religion - it can be one of the traditional ones, or a modern secular one like transhumsnism or progressivism. Traditional ones, with rituals, are best imo.

    But there is a path and a Way that suits everyone's nature.

    Replies: @Daniel Chieh

    I can’t wait until there’s a path that involves you actually living up to your words and donating your worldly possessions to Mr. Karlin, but most likely you’ll just continue prattling about your mental issues as if they are some form of wisdom.

    • Thanks: Bill
    • LOL: Mr. Hack
  78. @Dieter Kief
    @AaronB

    This down in the blockquote does not work (is not free of performative self-contradiction) because there is no such a thing as living for the moment without having a philosophy (= a plan to do so) in the first place.


    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.
     
    I could have also put it this way: Jean-Jacques Rousseau's ideas were not naive (= natural), but rather - elaborated results of a long line of predecessors in the European and Middle Eastern history of thoughts.

    Replies: @AaronB

    If you like, we can call it the philosophy of no-philosophy.

    But you are quite correct it is only arrived at by a process of thought. Wittgenstein said the purpose of philosophy is to deconstruct philosophy. This is similar to Buddhism.

    By the time we reach adulthood, we have implanted in us all sorts of ideas that are part of our culture. The true task of philosophy, and Buddhism, is to get rid of all that abd live naturally.

    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.

    • Replies: @Dieter Kief
    @AaronB


    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.
     
    Aaron, if you don't mind, I make now a somewhat - dialectical - - joke - - for the 'appy few**** - - - Your Buddhism is kinda - Hegelian!

    After Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, you can't even be sure, whether Buddhism could have been rightfully understood - before the Swabian had come along. No Siddharta without C. G. Jung's influence on Hermann Hesse too. OK - my last joke for today!

    **** think of Francois Hardy pronouncing these words with a lispy lilt added too - - - (almost heaven = innerwordly transcendence = almighty Hegel again, full philosophical circle, hehe).

    , @Mr. Hack
    @AaronB

    Samsara?

  79. @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.

    The secular "war" on poverty and racism and death and illness comes from this way of thinking.

    I am curious - how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.

    Replies: @Coconuts

    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.

    As I was saying evil is an absence of being i.e. it is nothing, so it can’t be made part of a larger whole. Elimination of evil would be maximising the level of being of things so that they fulfill their nature completely. Created beings always desire and act to try to maximise their own perfection; with background assumptions like this in place it is hard to make sense of it being necessary for things not to do this and persist in imperfect states relative to their natures.

    Manicheans believed that evil was a kind of being, for example I think they thought all material things were evil, and that good and evil types of being were at war, this is why I wasn’t sure I followed the point you were making.

    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God’s mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God’s justice, which is the same thing as God’s wisdom, which is the same thing as God’s goodness and so on.

    I am curious – how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.

    In this way:

    Thesis: Whiteness (i.e. Whiteness is a system of power for progressives)
    Antithesis: Blackness
    Synthesis: Diversity of narratives and systems; the post-racial future.

    Thesis: Masculinity
    Antithesis: Femininity
    Synthesis: Universal Queerness

    I think this is probably some kind of latent inheritance from Marxist dialectical materialism, but progressives seem to be obsessed with breaking down binary oppositions.

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @Coconuts

    Thanks.

    Evil according this is things existing in an imperfect way. Therefore imperfection has to be eradicated. You seek to maximize one state and minimize its opposite. It is manichean with regard to states of being. Even preferring being to non-being is manichean (dualistic) :) Many traditions give non-being full rights.

    When you judge one thing or state preferable to another, and strive to achieve the preferable thing and eradicate the other, you are creating a manichean value system.

    Preferences are manichean. Dialectical systems have no preferences- they recognize the necessity of everything. Taoism for instance recognizes the importance of imperfection and says it has a necessary existence.

    Check out my comment above quoting Seng Tzan. Although I will agree with you that your description isn't classically manichean, but nevertheless I think it reflects the same kind of dualistic thinking.

    I would deny that every being wants to perfect itself. Animals are clearly happy as they are. Rather, I would say every being wants to live according to its nature. Unhappy humans strive to perfect themselves - although ideas of human perfection are as diverse as anything- but this may be the very source of their unhappiness. Many traditions have thought so. If everything wants to be itself, then trying to change may be a denial of its nature.

    Perfection is an ambigious term, and generally measured against use or function. But what is the function of the human? Perfect ones nature can only mean we would become more useful in some way. But can human life be thought of in these terms? Thinking up some ideal of perfection, and trying to conform to it, is a denial of our nature. And if every being endeavors to be itself, the source of man's frustrations may be his attempt to conform to ideals of perfection he has dreamed up.

    Thanks for explaining how progressivism is dialectic. I would have to disagree here too, and I think it is aiming at the complete eradication of what it regards as evil.

    Although I couldn't agree with your comment, it was intelligent and interesting, so thanks.

    , @AltanBakshi
    @Coconuts


    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God’s mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God’s justice, which is the same thing as God’s wisdom, which is the same thing as God’s goodness and so on.
     
    Divine Simplicity is a western Christian or a Catholic doctrine, I dont know if Orthodox Christians follow it. Judaism also has somewhat similar view with the absolute oneness of God, maybe Muslims too.
  80. @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.
     
    As I was saying evil is an absence of being i.e. it is nothing, so it can't be made part of a larger whole. Elimination of evil would be maximising the level of being of things so that they fulfill their nature completely. Created beings always desire and act to try to maximise their own perfection; with background assumptions like this in place it is hard to make sense of it being necessary for things not to do this and persist in imperfect states relative to their natures.

    Manicheans believed that evil was a kind of being, for example I think they thought all material things were evil, and that good and evil types of being were at war, this is why I wasn't sure I followed the point you were making.

    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God's mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God's justice, which is the same thing as God's wisdom, which is the same thing as God's goodness and so on.


    I am curious – how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.
     
    In this way:

    Thesis: Whiteness (i.e. Whiteness is a system of power for progressives)
    Antithesis: Blackness
    Synthesis: Diversity of narratives and systems; the post-racial future.

    Thesis: Masculinity
    Antithesis: Femininity
    Synthesis: Universal Queerness

    I think this is probably some kind of latent inheritance from Marxist dialectical materialism, but progressives seem to be obsessed with breaking down binary oppositions.

    Replies: @AaronB, @AltanBakshi

    Thanks.

    Evil according this is things existing in an imperfect way. Therefore imperfection has to be eradicated. You seek to maximize one state and minimize its opposite. It is manichean with regard to states of being. Even preferring being to non-being is manichean (dualistic) 🙂 Many traditions give non-being full rights.

    When you judge one thing or state preferable to another, and strive to achieve the preferable thing and eradicate the other, you are creating a manichean value system.

    Preferences are manichean. Dialectical systems have no preferences- they recognize the necessity of everything. Taoism for instance recognizes the importance of imperfection and says it has a necessary existence.

    Check out my comment above quoting Seng Tzan. Although I will agree with you that your description isn’t classically manichean, but nevertheless I think it reflects the same kind of dualistic thinking.

    I would deny that every being wants to perfect itself. Animals are clearly happy as they are. Rather, I would say every being wants to live according to its nature. Unhappy humans strive to perfect themselves – although ideas of human perfection are as diverse as anything- but this may be the very source of their unhappiness. Many traditions have thought so. If everything wants to be itself, then trying to change may be a denial of its nature.

    Perfection is an ambigious term, and generally measured against use or function. But what is the function of the human? Perfect ones nature can only mean we would become more useful in some way. But can human life be thought of in these terms? Thinking up some ideal of perfection, and trying to conform to it, is a denial of our nature. And if every being endeavors to be itself, the source of man’s frustrations may be his attempt to conform to ideals of perfection he has dreamed up.

    Thanks for explaining how progressivism is dialectic. I would have to disagree here too, and I think it is aiming at the complete eradication of what it regards as evil.

    Although I couldn’t agree with your comment, it was intelligent and interesting, so thanks.

  81. @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...Trump’s nonexistent libertarianism will take the blame. There will then be calls for even more government.
     
    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism and its ability to solve everything without changing any of the building blocks of the current de facto libertarian economy:

    - open borders and a flood of cheap migrants to destroy labor markets for younger people
    - low tax policies that benefit slightly middle class people, but they really benefit the top 0.01% (Bezos made a killing under Trump)
    - increasingly gig economy that simply doesn't account for the need for social services that like health care, pensions, education, etc...

    The celebration and boosterism about the 'best economy ever' cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That's why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.

    The current economy simply doesn't and cannot work for large numbers of mainly younger, not well connected or not-the-right-colour people. That means enough people will say: 'screw it, I am screwed anyway, let the government do it' In this way the sociopathic libertarian policies actually encourage big government. In other words, if Bezos and Co. were not an ass.holes, there would be less political demand for government solutions. But they are ass..oles and unfortunately Trump mostly joined them. That cost him the election.

    trillion dollar a year deficits now turning into two trillion dollar a year deficits.
     
    What exactly is the meaning of deficits in an economy based on virtual money? Would Bezos be worth $100 billion if US had real money and not fiat currency dumped at will by the government bank? Think about it, and figure out who the real beneficiaries of deficit spending are.

    Replies: @Mark G.

    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism …

    You don’t have a very good understanding of libertarianism. Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street and wealthy people who own a lot of stocks while not helping the average person. The Federal Reserve didn’t even exist in the 19th century so Trump isn’t following 19th century policies in this case.

    The celebration and boosterism about the ‘best economy ever‘ cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That’s why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.

    Trump lost because he followed pro-Wall Street policies, as I said above, and because he funneled even more money to the already bloated military. He also lost because he pandered to blacks by promising to direct more government money to them with his Platinum Plan. There was no Platinum Plan for working class whites. Trump cut taxes but he didn’t have matching spending cuts so that just means there will be higher taxes in the future when we have to pay back the money we borrowed to make up the difference. None of these Trump policies are libertarian.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street
     
    Would you prefer higher interest rates? Do you understand what higher rates would do to the financial system with trillions of dollars in un-payable debt? Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.

    Libertarianism believes in 'invisible hand', a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different? The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk and disregard for what isn't working in America (labor markets, higher education, health care, housing for young people...) lost support among enough people who are betting that a bit more empathy or government help is needed.

    I agree with you on the bloated military and pandering to the blacks. It had an effect, but they all pander so the differentiating factor was more likely that Biden came across as more empathetic. He was lying, but at least he pretended. Boisterous capitalism-uber-alles, de facto libertarianism as most people see it, is not a winning electoral strategy.

    Replies: @Mark G.

  82. @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    As I pointed out above, libertarianism is nothing else but a warmed up 19th century liberal capitalism. Trump massively celebrated this capitalism ...
     
    You don't have a very good understanding of libertarianism. Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street and wealthy people who own a lot of stocks while not helping the average person. The Federal Reserve didn't even exist in the 19th century so Trump isn't following 19th century policies in this case.

    The celebration and boosterism about the ‘best economy ever‘ cost Trump 5% of his white, male voters (drop from 2016 to 2020). That’s why he lost, or why cheating by Democrats became mathematically possible.
     
    Trump lost because he followed pro-Wall Street policies, as I said above, and because he funneled even more money to the already bloated military. He also lost because he pandered to blacks by promising to direct more government money to them with his Platinum Plan. There was no Platinum Plan for working class whites. Trump cut taxes but he didn't have matching spending cuts so that just means there will be higher taxes in the future when we have to pay back the money we borrowed to make up the difference. None of these Trump policies are libertarian.

    Replies: @Beckow

    …Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street

    Would you prefer higher interest rates? Do you understand what higher rates would do to the financial system with trillions of dollars in un-payable debt? Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.

    Libertarianism believes in ‘invisible hand‘, a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different? The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk and disregard for what isn’t working in America (labor markets, higher education, health care, housing for young people…) lost support among enough people who are betting that a bit more empathy or government help is needed.

    I agree with you on the bloated military and pandering to the blacks. It had an effect, but they all pander so the differentiating factor was more likely that Biden came across as more empathetic. He was lying, but at least he pretended. Boisterous capitalism-uber-alles, de facto libertarianism as most people see it, is not a winning electoral strategy.

    • Replies: @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.
     
    Whether they are a good thing or a bad thing, the government intervening to lower interest rates is not libertarianism. Trump supports that interventionist policy.

    Libertarianism believes in ‘invisible hand‘, a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different?
     
    I'm not saying they are different. They are about the same and Trump is neither one. Exactly what minimal government policies did Trump follow? Government spending increased under him and the government national debt increased by seven trillion dollars during the four years of his presidency.

    The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk ...
     
    Most political leaders engage in happy talk about how great things are under them. Does this mean most political leaders are libertarian? No, it doesn't. Trump engaging in happy talk doesn't make him a libertarian. I agree with you, though, that the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class, who voted for him in 2016 to not do so this time.

    Replies: @Beckow

  83. @Dmitry

    Joe Biden’s victory marks

     

    Why "neoliberalism", when politics of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris correspond to the modern use of the word "liberal" (i.e. centre-left, with support for some aspects of welfare state and social justice in terms of outcomes, rather than opportunities)?

    Joe Biden is very generic, central left politician, in the context the current Western world i.e. he is a standard liberal (in the 20th century meaning of the word, rather than the 19th century meaning).

    In the first debate with Biden vs Trump, the only important policy they discussed was about corporation tax, in which Biden says that he will reverse modest reduction of corporation tax which was the most significant policy Trump has achieved in the 4 years as president of USA.

    An original liberal (in 19th century sense), would support corporation tax rate reduction. Liberal in the original sense, would correspond to Gladstone's views . However, the meaning of the word liberal changed across the 1920s-1970s, to refer to a centre-left ideology, as aspects of support for a welfare state and social justice (equality) in terms of outcomes. Therefore "liberalism" today, refers to what in a 20th century was "centre-left" ideology in Western democracies.

    Subsequently, terminology "neoliberal" was invented by leftwing writers in the 1980s, to refer to attempt to revive a Gladstone type of liberal ideology, by Hayek, Milton Friedman, and then pejoratively used to refer to controversial and hated (by leftwing writers) dictators Pinochet, Fujimori, and more democratic politicians Reagan and Thatcher.

    Nowadays, most of politicians in Democrat Party in the USA corresponds to the modern sense of liberal (centre left), with this trend increasing since Obama. Bill Clinton had been more centrist emphasis on social and economic topics, while Obama became more liberal by the second term of power, and focused more on rhetoric about equality of outcomes, especially in terms of equality of outcomes between categories like race and gender. Republican Party in USA, tries to incorporate "neoliberal" concepts, although recently with Trump there was a rebellion against "neoliberal" views on free trade. Although earlier George W. Bush had also followed some protectionist policy (for example, with steel).

    Aside from trade, in most of his other views, Trump was close to the neoliberal ideologies that became fashionable in his youth in the 1970s and 1980s. And Trump has in some sense an religious way of speaking about American capitalism and business, that reminds us of 1980s Cold War rhetoric.

    Replies: @Beckow, @TG, @Daniel Chieh, @Anatoly Karlin, @Yevardian

    Biden would still be considered centre-right in any Western country just a decade or two ago. As I recall his running mate Kamala Harris’ husband pursued some vicious anti-labour legislation against uber drivers, drop the identity politics garbage and there’s no conceivable way most Democrat politicians could be considered at all ‘left’.

    • Agree: dfordoom, AnonFromTN
  84. @AaronB
    @Dieter Kief

    If you like, we can call it the philosophy of no-philosophy.

    But you are quite correct it is only arrived at by a process of thought. Wittgenstein said the purpose of philosophy is to deconstruct philosophy. This is similar to Buddhism.

    By the time we reach adulthood, we have implanted in us all sorts of ideas that are part of our culture. The true task of philosophy, and Buddhism, is to get rid of all that abd live naturally.

    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.

    Replies: @Dieter Kief, @Mr. Hack

    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.

    Aaron, if you don’t mind, I make now a somewhat – dialectical – – joke – – for the ‘appy few**** – – – Your Buddhism is kinda – Hegelian!

    After Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, you can’t even be sure, whether Buddhism could have been rightfully understood – before the Swabian had come along. No Siddharta without C. G. Jung’s influence on Hermann Hesse too. OK – my last joke for today!

    **** think of Francois Hardy pronouncing these words with a lispy lilt added too – – – (almost heaven = innerwordly transcendence = almighty Hegel again, full philosophical circle, hehe).

    • Thanks: AaronB
  85. @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi

    Some versions of Buddhism for what you say, and i should really be more clear that I am talking about Chan.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-


    The Great Way is not difficult
    for those who have no preferences.
    When love and hate are both absent
    everything becomes clear and undisguised.
    Make the smallest distinction, however,
    and heaven and earth are set infinitely apart.
    If you wish to see the truth
    then hold no opinions for or against anything.
    To set up what you like against what you dislike
    is the disease of the mind.

    Indeed, it is due to our choosing to accept or reject
    that we do not see the true nature of things.

    When you try to stop activity to achieve passivity
    your very effort fills you with activity.

    The more you talk and think about it,
    the further astray you wander from the truth.
    Stop talking and thinking,
    and there is nothing you will not be able to know.

    Do not search for the truth;
    only cease to cherish opinions.

    To live in the Great Way
    is neither easy nor difficult,
    but those with limited views
    are fearful and irresolute;
    the faster they hurry, the slower they go,
    and clinging cannot be limited;
    even to be attached to the idea of enlightenment
    is to go astray.
    Just let things be in their own way,
    and there will be neither coming nor going.

    Obey the nature of things [your own nature],
    and you will walk freely and undisturbed.
    When thought is in bondage the truth is hidden,
    for everything is murky and unclear,
    and the burdensome practice of judging
    brings annoyance and weariness.
    What benefits can be derived
    from distinctions and separations?
    If you wish to move in the One Way,
    do not dislike even the world of senses and ideas.
    Indeed, to accept them fully
    is identical with true Enlightenment.
    The wise man strives to no goals
    but the foolish man fetters himself.
    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.

    To seek Mind with the mind
    is the greatest of all mistakes.

    Rest and unrest derive from illusion;
    with enlightenment there is no liking and disliking.
    All dualities come from ignorant inference.
    They are like dreams or flowers in the air:
    foolish to try to grasp them.
    Gain and loss, right and wrong:
    such thoughts must finally be abolished at once.

    One thing, all things:
    move among and intermingle,
    without distinction.
    To live in this realization
    is to be without anxiety about non-perfection.

     

    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.

    The point is, any motivated action is karmic action, because it is self seeking. Being good as part of a religious path is self seeking behavior, it is a form of attachment, and thus it binds you to the world of Samsara.

    But again, there are versions of Buddhism that are like what you say.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.

    Who has claimed anything else? By becoming Buddha we have the best possible capability to help sentient beings. Soon you say that Bodhisattvas stay in Samsara, yes because gaining Buddhahood is different from the state of Arhat who abides in Nirvana. Buddhas go beyond Nirvana and help forever sentient beings, this is the view of Mahayana, but Hinayanas have somewhat different view.

    By helping others we help ourselves, by helping ourselves we help others, there is ultimately no difference for a truly altruistic mind.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-

    Its extremely hard to translate from the Classical Chinese and to convey properly the precise and the profound meaning to English language. Your translation is made by some guy named Richard B. Clarke, who died couple years ago and I cant even find his lineage of Dharma transmission.
    https://www.livingdharmacenter.org/rc1.html
    Seems that he was follower of Japanese style Buddhism, I cant even find which sect of Japanese Buddhism, but no matter, he probably in all likelihood translated the poem by using Japanese Buddhist manuals or commentaries.

    Here on this site there are about 30 translations of Xinxin Ming
    https://terebess.hu/english/hsin.html
    They differ quite much from each other. I think that its extremely hard to translate Classical Chinese texts from the time of the Sui and Tang dynasties to modern English, and I think that our Chinese posters here on this site also share my opinion.

    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.

    Still even this translation of dubious origins does not claim that all is one or that reality is somehow monistic. Yes there is only one Dharma, quite basic stuff in Buddhism, does it in your mind somehow mean that all is one or something?

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi


    One thing, all things:
    move among and intermingle,
    without distinction.
    To live in this realization
    is to be without anxiety about non-perfection
     
    .

    Its not monism, but non duality, interdependence, mutual arising, polarity, opposites implying each other. The Sing Sing has more quotes about non duality, too.
  86. @Coconuts
    @AaronB


    Ok, but this still leaves evil as that side of reality that has to be eliminated and does not form a necessary part of a larger whole. So in that sense, it is manichean.
     
    As I was saying evil is an absence of being i.e. it is nothing, so it can't be made part of a larger whole. Elimination of evil would be maximising the level of being of things so that they fulfill their nature completely. Created beings always desire and act to try to maximise their own perfection; with background assumptions like this in place it is hard to make sense of it being necessary for things not to do this and persist in imperfect states relative to their natures.

    Manicheans believed that evil was a kind of being, for example I think they thought all material things were evil, and that good and evil types of being were at war, this is why I wasn't sure I followed the point you were making.

    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God's mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God's justice, which is the same thing as God's wisdom, which is the same thing as God's goodness and so on.


    I am curious – how is modern Progressivism dialectical? For instance, it wants to completely eradicate racism, and does not recognize any way that consideration of race can be integrated into a benevolent whole.
     
    In this way:

    Thesis: Whiteness (i.e. Whiteness is a system of power for progressives)
    Antithesis: Blackness
    Synthesis: Diversity of narratives and systems; the post-racial future.

    Thesis: Masculinity
    Antithesis: Femininity
    Synthesis: Universal Queerness

    I think this is probably some kind of latent inheritance from Marxist dialectical materialism, but progressives seem to be obsessed with breaking down binary oppositions.

    Replies: @AaronB, @AltanBakshi

    Another thing which might be relevant, a relatively common Christian belief about God is that God is completely simple, incomposite and has no parts, even metaphysical parts like properties. In this respect God’s mercy is thought to be ultimately the same thing as God’s justice, which is the same thing as God’s wisdom, which is the same thing as God’s goodness and so on.

    Divine Simplicity is a western Christian or a Catholic doctrine, I dont know if Orthodox Christians follow it. Judaism also has somewhat similar view with the absolute oneness of God, maybe Muslims too.

  87. @AaronB
    Enlightenment values themselves derive from religion, specifically Christianity.

    The belief that mankind is different from the other animals, that history is a story of progress towards redemption, and that mankind can live rationally are all religious beliefs that are delusions.

    So its not surprising that Enlightenment based value systems have saints.

    Transhumsnists are also religious. Any system that puts value in the future perfection of mankind and strives for immortality is religious.

    The only alternative to religion is to accept death, forget about the future, forget about human perfection, and live in the Now, not according to a philosophy or theory, but spontaneously.

    Replies: @Beckow, @mal, @AltanBakshi, @advancedatheist, @Dieter Kief, @Jake

    They derive from in order to subvert and then replace. The ‘religion’ of Enlightenment is to replace historic Christianity.

  88. @AltanBakshi
    @AaronB


    Altruism for the sake of liberation os not altruism.
     
    Who has claimed anything else? By becoming Buddha we have the best possible capability to help sentient beings. Soon you say that Bodhisattvas stay in Samsara, yes because gaining Buddhahood is different from the state of Arhat who abides in Nirvana. Buddhas go beyond Nirvana and help forever sentient beings, this is the view of Mahayana, but Hinayanas have somewhat different view.

    By helping others we help ourselves, by helping ourselves we help others, there is ultimately no difference for a truly altruistic mind.

    Are you familiar with Seng Tsan, the Third Patriarch of Chan, and his poem the Sing Sing Ming? Its quite brief and multiple translations are available online. Here are a few excerpts from that poem-
     
    Its extremely hard to translate from the Classical Chinese and to convey properly the precise and the profound meaning to English language. Your translation is made by some guy named Richard B. Clarke, who died couple years ago and I cant even find his lineage of Dharma transmission.
    https://www.livingdharmacenter.org/rc1.html
    Seems that he was follower of Japanese style Buddhism, I cant even find which sect of Japanese Buddhism, but no matter, he probably in all likelihood translated the poem by using Japanese Buddhist manuals or commentaries.

    Here on this site there are about 30 translations of Xinxin Ming
    https://terebess.hu/english/hsin.html
    They differ quite much from each other. I think that its extremely hard to translate Classical Chinese texts from the time of the Sui and Tang dynasties to modern English, and I think that our Chinese posters here on this site also share my opinion.

    There is one Dharma, not many;
    distinctions arise
    from the clinging needs of the ignorant.
     
    Still even this translation of dubious origins does not claim that all is one or that reality is somehow monistic. Yes there is only one Dharma, quite basic stuff in Buddhism, does it in your mind somehow mean that all is one or something?

    Replies: @AaronB

    One thing, all things:
    move among and intermingle,
    without distinction.
    To live in this realization
    is to be without anxiety about non-perfection

    .

    Its not monism, but non duality, interdependence, mutual arising, polarity, opposites implying each other. The Sing Sing has more quotes about non duality, too.

  89. @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...Trump pressured the Federal Reserve to follow a low interest rate policy that benefits Wall Street
     
    Would you prefer higher interest rates? Do you understand what higher rates would do to the financial system with trillions of dollars in un-payable debt? Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.

    Libertarianism believes in 'invisible hand', a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different? The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk and disregard for what isn't working in America (labor markets, higher education, health care, housing for young people...) lost support among enough people who are betting that a bit more empathy or government help is needed.

    I agree with you on the bloated military and pandering to the blacks. It had an effect, but they all pander so the differentiating factor was more likely that Biden came across as more empathetic. He was lying, but at least he pretended. Boisterous capitalism-uber-alles, de facto libertarianism as most people see it, is not a winning electoral strategy.

    Replies: @Mark G.

    Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.

    Whether they are a good thing or a bad thing, the government intervening to lower interest rates is not libertarianism. Trump supports that interventionist policy.

    Libertarianism believes in ‘invisible hand‘, a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different?

    I’m not saying they are different. They are about the same and Trump is neither one. Exactly what minimal government policies did Trump follow? Government spending increased under him and the government national debt increased by seven trillion dollars during the four years of his presidency.

    The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk …

    Most political leaders engage in happy talk about how great things are under them. Does this mean most political leaders are libertarian? No, it doesn’t. Trump engaging in happy talk doesn’t make him a libertarian. I agree with you, though, that the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class, who voted for him in 2016 to not do so this time.

    • Replies: @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class...
     
    Agree, that's is a key point that many still don't understand. He lost because he basically betrayed his base.

    There are different kinds of happy talk. Trump engaged in 'a free market, business boom, we need more workers, more immigrants, blabla...' boosterism - that had to grate workers with less of a foothold in the economy facing expensive housing and school debts. These younger workers need to make more money and that requires a tight labor market. Trump was blatantly taking that away from them because businesses are scared of a balanced labor market. That's why he lost.

    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he? Other than some speech-making and marginally protecting the nation-state - the 19th century liberals did that too - a few interventionists policies that almost all helped businesses not workers, how exactly wasn't he a libertarian? Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.

    You place the bar so high that no actual government could be called 'libertarian' while in practise almost all 'conservative' ones are. You do that to absolve the dysfunctional libertarian ideology of responsibility. One more time: it is simply not popular because it doesn't and cannot work for most people. Until conservatives abandon this dog-eat-dog nonsense and understand that functional national societies require social stability and that means that some things are not left to the 'market', they will keep on losing and their ethnic nations will keep on being taking apart.

    At the end it's your own ideology that is the biggest enemy.

    Replies: @Mark G.

  90. @AaronB
    @Dieter Kief

    If you like, we can call it the philosophy of no-philosophy.

    But you are quite correct it is only arrived at by a process of thought. Wittgenstein said the purpose of philosophy is to deconstruct philosophy. This is similar to Buddhism.

    By the time we reach adulthood, we have implanted in us all sorts of ideas that are part of our culture. The true task of philosophy, and Buddhism, is to get rid of all that abd live naturally.

    Buddhism can be said to be the religion of no-religion.

    Replies: @Dieter Kief, @Mr. Hack

    Samsara?

  91. @Yevardian
    @Blinky Bill

    I noticed you seem to have a thing against Steve Sailer. I never found him at all interesting anyway, but I have seen quite a few people turn on him recently, for whatever reason. To me he seems to be posting the same snarky alt-lite stuff for the ADHD crowd (not that there's anything wrong with that) he always has.

    Replies: @Blinky Bill

    Thank you Yevardian for such a insightful/inciteful comment. 😄

    Let me start off by saying AK and SS are on very good terms and highly supportive of each others work. Therefore I don’t believe this to be the appropriate venue to discuss my opinion of SS. But I will make this anodyne comment!

    I noticed you seem to have a thing against Steve Sailer

    This statement is not correct, my opinion of SS is complex and has changed over time. I can proudly say that I’m probably one of the few people who comment here, that have read all SS main works. He clearly is an original thinker with the moral courage to speak his own mind. A trait that is as rare as it is impressive. He also has the ability to explain complex ideas in a simple manner, perhaps this is also a weakness. For he attracts untold numbers of knuckle-draggers as supporters. SS then panders to them with numerous low quality post and articles, half of which I think he struggles to write.

    I don’t blame SS for this, a man must eat. I can truthfully say that if I were him, I would do the same! But his works no longer have the same draw they once did for me.

  92. @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    Low interest rates are an absolute must, unless you think a financial meltdown is a good thing.
     
    Whether they are a good thing or a bad thing, the government intervening to lower interest rates is not libertarianism. Trump supports that interventionist policy.

    Libertarianism believes in ‘invisible hand‘, a fully private economy where business maximize their profits and the government role is minimal. That happens to also be the definition of the classical 19th century liberalism, so how are they different?
     
    I'm not saying they are different. They are about the same and Trump is neither one. Exactly what minimal government policies did Trump follow? Government spending increased under him and the government national debt increased by seven trillion dollars during the four years of his presidency.

    The basic philosophy is exactly the same, and Trump with his happy talk ...
     
    Most political leaders engage in happy talk about how great things are under them. Does this mean most political leaders are libertarian? No, it doesn't. Trump engaging in happy talk doesn't make him a libertarian. I agree with you, though, that the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class, who voted for him in 2016 to not do so this time.

    Replies: @Beckow

    …the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class…

    Agree, that’s is a key point that many still don’t understand. He lost because he basically betrayed his base.

    There are different kinds of happy talk. Trump engaged in ‘a free market, business boom, we need more workers, more immigrants, blabla…‘ boosterism – that had to grate workers with less of a foothold in the economy facing expensive housing and school debts. These younger workers need to make more money and that requires a tight labor market. Trump was blatantly taking that away from them because businesses are scared of a balanced labor market. That’s why he lost.

    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he? Other than some speech-making and marginally protecting the nation-state – the 19th century liberals did that too – a few interventionists policies that almost all helped businesses not workers, how exactly wasn’t he a libertarian? Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.

    You place the bar so high that no actual government could be called ‘libertarian‘ while in practise almost all ‘conservative’ ones are. You do that to absolve the dysfunctional libertarian ideology of responsibility. One more time: it is simply not popular because it doesn’t and cannot work for most people. Until conservatives abandon this dog-eat-dog nonsense and understand that functional national societies require social stability and that means that some things are not left to the ‘market‘, they will keep on losing and their ethnic nations will keep on being taking apart.

    At the end it’s your own ideology that is the biggest enemy.

    • Replies: @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he?
     
    Trump ran in 2016 as a paleoconservative. His intellectual predecessor was Pat Buchanan and he advocated the same kind of immigration, trade and foreign policies as Buchanan. There is some overlap between libertarian and paleoconservative beliefs. They both believe in a noninterventionist foreign policy. The paleoconservative belief in lower immigration would also lead to the libertarian goal of lower spending since immigrants use more welfare than natives. The two are not the same, though. Buchanan advocated policies that would benefit the working class. Once in office, Trump partially abandoned these policies which is why working class support dropped for him this time around. The number of manufacturing jobs did not increase and the trade deficit didn't drop under Trump because of his pro-Wall Street focus.

    Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.
     
    Politically connected rich people using the government to benefit themselves is not libertarianism. I explained this before but it doesn't fit in with your preconceptions so you keep ignoring what I say. Instead of looking at the evidence and then deciding what you believe, you decided what you believe first and are now ignoring any evidence that contradicts your belief system.

    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism. It is socialism for rich people. Both the Democrats and Republicans believe in this corrupt crony capitalism. That is why the stock market continued to go up after Biden got elected. Wall Street and wealthy stock owners know that the Biden administration will have the Fed continue the same policies that the Trump administration followed. The military-industrial complex isn't worried either since the neocons who jumped on board the Biden bandwagon will advocate a bellicose foreign policy that will require a large military.

    Replies: @dfordoom, @Beckow

  93. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I'm not hiding behind theology, I'm just saying that the current ideas we live by are not Jewish religious ideas made secular. The Enlightenment is Christian ideas made secular.


    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn’t bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and – as always – taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.
     
    Okay, but none of these are Jewish ideas. Capitalism was developed intellectually by a slew of brilliant Enhlish writers, but was pioneered by Italian Renaissance states like Venice, which were merchant oligarchies.

    But ok, Jews did do very well under capitalism, but there is nothing in the Jewish religion about that. But how is anything goes personal liberty Jewish? Or taking care of an insider elite that is exempt from rules? (That seems rather common to all societies, unfortunately).

    I understood secular Judaism to mean Jewish religious ideas translated into a secular context. For instance, in Christianity there is supposed to be a supernatural redemption. The Enlightenment made that into a secular redemption through science. I dont see a similar process with Jewish ideas.

    don’t know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye… (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.
     
    Absolutely, China is modeling itself on a Western philosophy. Its exists in the West, its just more advanced in China. And China has explicitly adopted this philosophy without controversy at the state level, while its still controversial in the West and applied in a more piecemeal fashion. But we may yet evolve to China's level of authoritarian control, if people like Ron Unz have their way, and we are trending in that direction.

    Still, as of now the panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.

    The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state – sooner or later the people wise up
     
    .

    I would say, the main driving force is the Enlightenment ideal of creating rational man without primitive attachments, and to abolish conflict and war. War was endemic to Europe, and was seen as rooted in nationalistic attachments. The two world wars were absolutely catastrophic, and were seen as the culmination of nationalism.

    As I said elsewhere, until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare, there will be widespread opposition to it, because modern technology has the potential to destroy human civilization. This is a serious concern that is just ignored by nationalists. I myself am sympathetic to nationalism, but this issue must be addressed. For instance, the Austro-Hunfarian empire kept the peace between various groups, who descended into vicious warfare the moment they became independent nations. Its hard not to conclude an empire, scaled up globally, is better for peace.

    Without question, business interests saw they could benefit from this in the form of cheap labor at home and abroad, but they did not lead this movement.

    Again, I do not see how this is a Jewish idea made secular.

    As far as I understand your argument, you are saying Jews benefited from capitalism and globalism, so you call them secular Judaism. But Jews did not create these trends, and they are not characteristic ideas of the Jewish religion. A whole host of groups benefited from these trends, and they were developed by European philosophers and implemented by European elites.

    Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less ‘elite‘.
     
    That's not necessarily true. Elites may be more elite within their nation than in a global system. It just depends on particular circumstances. The Chinese elites are not benevolent, they ruthlessly exploit their people. Its just that for the moment, their particular economic circumstances allow them to be more elite in a nationalistic context.

    Assuming your idea that elites will always further and defend their status is correct, they will choose whatever system is best for that. So nationalistic elites are that way because it best preserves their status.

    However, I am wary of reducing all human behavior to considerations of efficiency, because I think ideology plays a very real role, and ideology can lead to very inefficient behavior. And ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.

    Replies: @Beckow, @Beckow

    …panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.

    The massive surveillance is also a way of life in the West and the population is largely ok with it. You see the distracting noise of meaningless controversy, because it has been a Western cultural tradition to allow unhappy dogs to bark, it changes nothing.

    ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.

    I agree with your elevated explanation, but there is also greed. In life ideology and greed always combine: ideology triggers greed and greed facilitates ideology. The current liberalism is largely carried by Secular Judaism, as nicely represented by NY Times, their priorities and goals are identical and the main proponents tend to be disproportionally secular Jews.

    In the past there was a complex interplay of native liberalism with Christianity and the dominant carriers were Anglos, but that is no longer the case. After WWII the tide has shifted. Today we live in an era of peak liberalism and the difference between what rules over us and NY Times (=the acknowledged voice of Secular Judaism) is non-existent. I am less concerned to what extent it came from the actual Jewish religious tradition; religions are very broad and one can find almost anything in them.

    The fact that libertarian, globalist capitalism has been good for the Jews adds the inevitable element of greed. For a long time it was also very good for the Anglo and French upper classes, I am not sure that is true anymore and we see a shift to the second-tier status for most of them.

    One thing you are I have agreed on is the idiocy of reducing life to ‘efficiency‘. And an ever expanding increase in ‘efficiency‘ is at the heart of liberalism or libertarianism. Sometimes with a dose of empathy, but increasingly not. That is an existential cul-de-sac and systems seldom manage to remain at their peak for too long. We are living through peak liberalism – almost everywhere – so the inevitable unraveling cannot be that far off.

  94. @Beckow
    @Mark G.


    ...the gap between what Trump was saying about the economy and the reality for many people contributed to his loss. There was a slight increase in incomes under him but the difference between what was promised and what was delivered disappointed enough of the people, particularly the white working class...
     
    Agree, that's is a key point that many still don't understand. He lost because he basically betrayed his base.

    There are different kinds of happy talk. Trump engaged in 'a free market, business boom, we need more workers, more immigrants, blabla...' boosterism - that had to grate workers with less of a foothold in the economy facing expensive housing and school debts. These younger workers need to make more money and that requires a tight labor market. Trump was blatantly taking that away from them because businesses are scared of a balanced labor market. That's why he lost.

    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he? Other than some speech-making and marginally protecting the nation-state - the 19th century liberals did that too - a few interventionists policies that almost all helped businesses not workers, how exactly wasn't he a libertarian? Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.

    You place the bar so high that no actual government could be called 'libertarian' while in practise almost all 'conservative' ones are. You do that to absolve the dysfunctional libertarian ideology of responsibility. One more time: it is simply not popular because it doesn't and cannot work for most people. Until conservatives abandon this dog-eat-dog nonsense and understand that functional national societies require social stability and that means that some things are not left to the 'market', they will keep on losing and their ethnic nations will keep on being taking apart.

    At the end it's your own ideology that is the biggest enemy.

    Replies: @Mark G.

    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he?

    Trump ran in 2016 as a paleoconservative. His intellectual predecessor was Pat Buchanan and he advocated the same kind of immigration, trade and foreign policies as Buchanan. There is some overlap between libertarian and paleoconservative beliefs. They both believe in a noninterventionist foreign policy. The paleoconservative belief in lower immigration would also lead to the libertarian goal of lower spending since immigrants use more welfare than natives. The two are not the same, though. Buchanan advocated policies that would benefit the working class. Once in office, Trump partially abandoned these policies which is why working class support dropped for him this time around. The number of manufacturing jobs did not increase and the trade deficit didn’t drop under Trump because of his pro-Wall Street focus.

    Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.

    Politically connected rich people using the government to benefit themselves is not libertarianism. I explained this before but it doesn’t fit in with your preconceptions so you keep ignoring what I say. Instead of looking at the evidence and then deciding what you believe, you decided what you believe first and are now ignoring any evidence that contradicts your belief system.

    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism. It is socialism for rich people. Both the Democrats and Republicans believe in this corrupt crony capitalism. That is why the stock market continued to go up after Biden got elected. Wall Street and wealthy stock owners know that the Biden administration will have the Fed continue the same policies that the Trump administration followed. The military-industrial complex isn’t worried either since the neocons who jumped on board the Biden bandwagon will advocate a bellicose foreign policy that will require a large military.

    • Replies: @dfordoom
    @Mark G.


    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism.
     
    The problem with capitalism is that it just hasn't been tried properly!

    Every ideology, from Marxism to libertarianism, works brilliantly in theory. Not quite so well in practice. In practice I think it's likely that free market capitalism will always end up morphing into crony capitalism.

    The problem is that the only force in society capable of preventing capitalism from becoming toxic is that state. So a balance between capitalism and the state seems to me to the most desirable system. Of course in a country as corrupt as the US that will be a problem, but then in a country as corrupt as the US every system will be a problem.
    , @Beckow
    @Mark G.

    To summarise, Trump won as a paleo-conservative, governed mostly like a business libertarian, and lost.

    Your tiresome argument about 'this is not the real capitalism!!!' is desperate. Well, actually, this is exactly what real capitalism is: liberal and libertarian, crony and corrupt. I think dfordoom said it better than I can:


    In practice...free market capitalism will always end up morphing into crony capitalism.
     
    That's the way it works, something to do with human nature. Or would you propose changing the human nature? Self-regulating profit seeking is an oxymoron.

    The 'invisible hand' that you devoutly worship is called invisible for a reason - it does not exist. But enjoy that Bezos has amassed $100 billion and that one day - and day now - America will have those private sidewalks, private police and uncorrupted private courts... Because only 'socialists' and governments steal and lie, once embracing liberal capitalism that behaviour is unthinkable...Right?

  95. @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he?
     
    Trump ran in 2016 as a paleoconservative. His intellectual predecessor was Pat Buchanan and he advocated the same kind of immigration, trade and foreign policies as Buchanan. There is some overlap between libertarian and paleoconservative beliefs. They both believe in a noninterventionist foreign policy. The paleoconservative belief in lower immigration would also lead to the libertarian goal of lower spending since immigrants use more welfare than natives. The two are not the same, though. Buchanan advocated policies that would benefit the working class. Once in office, Trump partially abandoned these policies which is why working class support dropped for him this time around. The number of manufacturing jobs did not increase and the trade deficit didn't drop under Trump because of his pro-Wall Street focus.

    Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.
     
    Politically connected rich people using the government to benefit themselves is not libertarianism. I explained this before but it doesn't fit in with your preconceptions so you keep ignoring what I say. Instead of looking at the evidence and then deciding what you believe, you decided what you believe first and are now ignoring any evidence that contradicts your belief system.

    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism. It is socialism for rich people. Both the Democrats and Republicans believe in this corrupt crony capitalism. That is why the stock market continued to go up after Biden got elected. Wall Street and wealthy stock owners know that the Biden administration will have the Fed continue the same policies that the Trump administration followed. The military-industrial complex isn't worried either since the neocons who jumped on board the Biden bandwagon will advocate a bellicose foreign policy that will require a large military.

    Replies: @dfordoom, @Beckow

    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism.

    The problem with capitalism is that it just hasn’t been tried properly!

    Every ideology, from Marxism to libertarianism, works brilliantly in theory. Not quite so well in practice. In practice I think it’s likely that free market capitalism will always end up morphing into crony capitalism.

    The problem is that the only force in society capable of preventing capitalism from becoming toxic is that state. So a balance between capitalism and the state seems to me to the most desirable system. Of course in a country as corrupt as the US that will be a problem, but then in a country as corrupt as the US every system will be a problem.

    • Agree: Beckow, AnonFromTN
  96. @The Wild Geese Howard
    @128


    You can still have a revolution and a hypothetical nuking of Silicon Valley with a dozen missiles.
     
    Where's Max Zorin when you really need him?

    https://youtu.be/RCzC3ZeMxws

    Replies: @Mr. Hack, @showmethereal

    That James Bond film was exactly my thought when I read the comment above. Ian Fleming was a part of the British intelligence apparatus in real life. So it’s not surprising that many plots in Bond movies fit with real life things we see in the news. The assassination of the Iranian nuclear scientist in the past 24 hours is another example.

  97. @Mark G.
    @Beckow


    If Trump was not a libertarian, or a classical liberal, what was he?
     
    Trump ran in 2016 as a paleoconservative. His intellectual predecessor was Pat Buchanan and he advocated the same kind of immigration, trade and foreign policies as Buchanan. There is some overlap between libertarian and paleoconservative beliefs. They both believe in a noninterventionist foreign policy. The paleoconservative belief in lower immigration would also lead to the libertarian goal of lower spending since immigrants use more welfare than natives. The two are not the same, though. Buchanan advocated policies that would benefit the working class. Once in office, Trump partially abandoned these policies which is why working class support dropped for him this time around. The number of manufacturing jobs did not increase and the trade deficit didn't drop under Trump because of his pro-Wall Street focus.

    Spending too much of the government issued virtual money to mostly benefit his business friends is a natural corruption in all systems, libertarians are not angels.
     
    Politically connected rich people using the government to benefit themselves is not libertarianism. I explained this before but it doesn't fit in with your preconceptions so you keep ignoring what I say. Instead of looking at the evidence and then deciding what you believe, you decided what you believe first and are now ignoring any evidence that contradicts your belief system.

    The type of capitalism we have now is a form of crony capitalism rather than free market capitalism. It is socialism for rich people. Both the Democrats and Republicans believe in this corrupt crony capitalism. That is why the stock market continued to go up after Biden got elected. Wall Street and wealthy stock owners know that the Biden administration will have the Fed continue the same policies that the Trump administration followed. The military-industrial complex isn't worried either since the neocons who jumped on board the Biden bandwagon will advocate a bellicose foreign policy that will require a large military.

    Replies: @dfordoom, @Beckow

    To summarise, Trump won as a paleo-conservative, governed mostly like a business libertarian, and lost.

    Your tiresome argument about ‘this is not the real capitalism!!!‘ is desperate. Well, actually, this is exactly what real capitalism is: liberal and libertarian, crony and corrupt. I think dfordoom said it better than I can:

    In practice…free market capitalism will always end up morphing into crony capitalism.

    That’s the way it works, something to do with human nature. Or would you propose changing the human nature? Self-regulating profit seeking is an oxymoron.

    The ‘invisible hand‘ that you devoutly worship is called invisible for a reason – it does not exist. But enjoy that Bezos has amassed $100 billion and that one day – and day now – America will have those private sidewalks, private police and uncorrupted private courts… Because only ‘socialists’ and governments steal and lie, once embracing liberal capitalism that behaviour is unthinkable…Right?

  98. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I'm not hiding behind theology, I'm just saying that the current ideas we live by are not Jewish religious ideas made secular. The Enlightenment is Christian ideas made secular.


    I said that current ruling liberalism is very similar to Secular Judaism, and the Secular is very important in it, NY Times doesn’t bother with theology. But the precepts are the same: uber-capitalist free market economy, anything goes personal liberty, no responsibility for society, and – as always – taking care of the insider elite that is exempted from all rules.
     
    Okay, but none of these are Jewish ideas. Capitalism was developed intellectually by a slew of brilliant Enhlish writers, but was pioneered by Italian Renaissance states like Venice, which were merchant oligarchies.

    But ok, Jews did do very well under capitalism, but there is nothing in the Jewish religion about that. But how is anything goes personal liberty Jewish? Or taking care of an insider elite that is exempt from rules? (That seems rather common to all societies, unfortunately).

    I understood secular Judaism to mean Jewish religious ideas translated into a secular context. For instance, in Christianity there is supposed to be a supernatural redemption. The Enlightenment made that into a secular redemption through science. I dont see a similar process with Jewish ideas.

    don’t know about China, but the surveillance state is very much omnipresent in the West. If you see a speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye… (theology for you). Stop projecting Western faults and practices on others. It is demeaning to the Western civilization because it smells of weakness and lying.
     
    Absolutely, China is modeling itself on a Western philosophy. Its exists in the West, its just more advanced in China. And China has explicitly adopted this philosophy without controversy at the state level, while its still controversial in the West and applied in a more piecemeal fashion. But we may yet evolve to China's level of authoritarian control, if people like Ron Unz have their way, and we are trending in that direction.

    Still, as of now the panopticon is the official state ideology of China which the population is largely ok with, whereas in the West it is just a trend.

    The main driving forces against nationalism have been the international elites, Christian hierarchy, and oligarchic interests that understand that it can be hard to hide within a functioning nation-state – sooner or later the people wise up
     
    .

    I would say, the main driving force is the Enlightenment ideal of creating rational man without primitive attachments, and to abolish conflict and war. War was endemic to Europe, and was seen as rooted in nationalistic attachments. The two world wars were absolutely catastrophic, and were seen as the culmination of nationalism.

    As I said elsewhere, until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare, there will be widespread opposition to it, because modern technology has the potential to destroy human civilization. This is a serious concern that is just ignored by nationalists. I myself am sympathetic to nationalism, but this issue must be addressed. For instance, the Austro-Hunfarian empire kept the peace between various groups, who descended into vicious warfare the moment they became independent nations. Its hard not to conclude an empire, scaled up globally, is better for peace.

    Without question, business interests saw they could benefit from this in the form of cheap labor at home and abroad, but they did not lead this movement.

    Again, I do not see how this is a Jewish idea made secular.

    As far as I understand your argument, you are saying Jews benefited from capitalism and globalism, so you call them secular Judaism. But Jews did not create these trends, and they are not characteristic ideas of the Jewish religion. A whole host of groups benefited from these trends, and they were developed by European philosophers and implemented by European elites.

    Having socially healthy national state where people can pursue their lives in relative comfort and peace is not what elites will ever want. It would make their lives less ‘elite‘.
     
    That's not necessarily true. Elites may be more elite within their nation than in a global system. It just depends on particular circumstances. The Chinese elites are not benevolent, they ruthlessly exploit their people. Its just that for the moment, their particular economic circumstances allow them to be more elite in a nationalistic context.

    Assuming your idea that elites will always further and defend their status is correct, they will choose whatever system is best for that. So nationalistic elites are that way because it best preserves their status.

    However, I am wary of reducing all human behavior to considerations of efficiency, because I think ideology plays a very real role, and ideology can lead to very inefficient behavior. And ideology is an attempt to cheat death and extract meaning from life, its rooted in our refusal to accept death.

    Replies: @Beckow, @Beckow

    …until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare

    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing ‘regimes’, dead people and destroyed societies everywhere – and none of it had anything to do with ‘nationalism’.

    It turns out that people will fight wars when they think they get something out of it, national aggrandisement being only one of many reasons. People mostly fight wars if they can, if there is no possibility of them personally suffering – so on we go from demented Allbright, through Cheney (‘Nice, it had to be done.”), Obama with his Nobel Price, and so on… Can national states with defined sovereignty really be worse?

    • Replies: @dfordoom
    @Beckow


    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing ‘regimes’, dead people and destroyed societies everywhere – and none of it had anything to do with ‘nationalism’.
     
    For a significant section of the American elite liberal globalism just means American imperialism.
    , @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I agree. Globalism was an attempt to overcome the violence of nationalism, but as you say, it has become its own source of violence.

    Because all ideals and ideologies- all attempts at perfect solutions to human problems- require massive violence to implement and get the unwilling to comply.

    Universal ideals are inherently violent as they must be imposed by force.

    That is why there will be a swing back toward nationalism, but hopefully in a different way than in the past.

    What we need is a genuine pluralism. My thesis is that old school nationalism was hidden universalism - each nation was competing to impose its values on the world, with the Anglos having won. In other words, there was no genuine respect for separate nations, or a desire to perpetuate a system of separate nations. Instead of universal ideals we recognize everyone is different and there are several different ways humans can live well. There is no one right way for everyone.

    No more universal ideals and no more ideology. The belief that the world can arrive at a state of final perfection if one set of values is implemented globally is the problem.

    The problem is, that this is a pipe dream. Human beings will never give up their ideology or their universal ideals. They will always think they have the universal formula that that they have the duty to impose on the world, by force if necessary. Islam, Christianity, modern liberalism, are all this way.

    Maybe Asia is different, but China seems to have drunk of the Western Kool Aid and become ideological.

    But it is worthwhile to have seen through the illusion of globalism. Its universal ideals are their own source of horrific violence. Its good to have no illusions. Nationalism may lead to violence, but so does globalism. There is no solution. We must live with the problem.

    Best to not get any hopes up and expect much. The best we can hope for is probably some kind of half measure nationalism and muddling through that may give us a period of relative, imperfect sanity, until the ideologies spring forth again.

    Humanity is what it is. Best not to take it too seriously :)

    Replies: @AaronB

  99. @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare
     
    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing 'regimes', dead people and destroyed societies everywhere - and none of it had anything to do with 'nationalism'.

    It turns out that people will fight wars when they think they get something out of it, national aggrandisement being only one of many reasons. People mostly fight wars if they can, if there is no possibility of them personally suffering - so on we go from demented Allbright, through Cheney ('Nice, it had to be done."), Obama with his Nobel Price, and so on... Can national states with defined sovereignty really be worse?

    Replies: @dfordoom, @AaronB

    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing ‘regimes’, dead people and destroyed societies everywhere – and none of it had anything to do with ‘nationalism’.

    For a significant section of the American elite liberal globalism just means American imperialism.

  100. @Beckow
    @AaronB


    ...until nationalism can be shown to not lead to incessant warfare
     
    I agree that has been the history and reputation of national states. But is it really true? We have had with liberal globalism a war after war, invading countries, bombing, changing 'regimes', dead people and destroyed societies everywhere - and none of it had anything to do with 'nationalism'.

    It turns out that people will fight wars when they think they get something out of it, national aggrandisement being only one of many reasons. People mostly fight wars if they can, if there is no possibility of them personally suffering - so on we go from demented Allbright, through Cheney ('Nice, it had to be done."), Obama with his Nobel Price, and so on... Can national states with defined sovereignty really be worse?

    Replies: @dfordoom, @AaronB

    I agree. Globalism was an attempt to overcome the violence of nationalism, but as you say, it has become its own source of violence.

    Because all ideals and ideologies- all attempts at perfect solutions to human problems- require massive violence to implement and get the unwilling to comply.

    Universal ideals are inherently violent as they must be imposed by force.

    That is why there will be a swing back toward nationalism, but hopefully in a different way than in the past.

    What we need is a genuine pluralism. My thesis is that old school nationalism was hidden universalism – each nation was competing to impose its values on the world, with the Anglos having won. In other words, there was no genuine respect for separate nations, or a desire to perpetuate a system of separate nations. Instead of universal ideals we recognize everyone is different and there are several different ways humans can live well. There is no one right way for everyone.

    No more universal ideals and no more ideology. The belief that the world can arrive at a state of final perfection if one set of values is implemented globally is the problem.

    The problem is, that this is a pipe dream. Human beings will never give up their ideology or their universal ideals. They will always think they have the universal formula that that they have the duty to impose on the world, by force if necessary. Islam, Christianity, modern liberalism, are all this way.

    Maybe Asia is different, but China seems to have drunk of the Western Kool Aid and become ideological.

    But it is worthwhile to have seen through the illusion of globalism. Its universal ideals are their own source of horrific violence. Its good to have no illusions. Nationalism may lead to violence, but so does globalism. There is no solution. We must live with the problem.

    Best to not get any hopes up and expect much. The best we can hope for is probably some kind of half measure nationalism and muddling through that may give us a period of relative, imperfect sanity, until the ideologies spring forth again.

    Humanity is what it is. Best not to take it too seriously 🙂

    • Replies: @AaronB
    @AaronB

    Our problem may be we think there are solutions to human problems. But what if there are no solutions?

    Nationalism brings war. So does globalism. Ideologies cause conflict, but most of mankind can't live without ideologies. Religions cause conflict and irrationality, but life without religion is empty.

    They say about life, none of us get out of this alive. We may say this about the human race - it will not end well. Our problems are intractable, we will never solve them, and the human race isn't getting out of this alive.

    Instead of a future where we solve all our problems, we will end up destroying ourselves or the planet.

    This need not be depressing. Freedom from hope and illusion can be exhilirating and liberate one from futile anxiety and misplaced effort. The task for the individual is to live well in the meantime, and instead of dreaming of a future to find satisfaction in life as it is.

  101. @AaronB
    @Beckow

    I agree. Globalism was an attempt to overcome the violence of nationalism, but as you say, it has become its own source of violence.

    Because all ideals and ideologies- all attempts at perfect solutions to human problems- require massive violence to implement and get the unwilling to comply.

    Universal ideals are inherently violent as they must be imposed by force.

    That is why there will be a swing back toward nationalism, but hopefully in a different way than in the past.

    What we need is a genuine pluralism. My thesis is that old school nationalism was hidden universalism - each nation was competing to impose its values on the world, with the Anglos having won. In other words, there was no genuine respect for separate nations, or a desire to perpetuate a system of separate nations. Instead of universal ideals we recognize everyone is different and there are several different ways humans can live well. There is no one right way for everyone.

    No more universal ideals and no more ideology. The belief that the world can arrive at a state of final perfection if one set of values is implemented globally is the problem.

    The problem is, that this is a pipe dream. Human beings will never give up their ideology or their universal ideals. They will always think they have the universal formula that that they have the duty to impose on the world, by force if necessary. Islam, Christianity, modern liberalism, are all this way.

    Maybe Asia is different, but China seems to have drunk of the Western Kool Aid and become ideological.

    But it is worthwhile to have seen through the illusion of globalism. Its universal ideals are their own source of horrific violence. Its good to have no illusions. Nationalism may lead to violence, but so does globalism. There is no solution. We must live with the problem.

    Best to not get any hopes up and expect much. The best we can hope for is probably some kind of half measure nationalism and muddling through that may give us a period of relative, imperfect sanity, until the ideologies spring forth again.

    Humanity is what it is. Best not to take it too seriously :)

    Replies: @AaronB

    Our problem may be we think there are solutions to human problems. But what if there are no solutions?

    Nationalism brings war. So does globalism. Ideologies cause conflict, but most of mankind can’t live without ideologies. Religions cause conflict and irrationality, but life without religion is empty.

    They say about life, none of us get out of this alive. We may say this about the human race – it will not end well. Our problems are intractable, we will never solve them, and the human race isn’t getting out of this alive.

    Instead of a future where we solve all our problems, we will end up destroying ourselves or the planet.

    This need not be depressing. Freedom from hope and illusion can be exhilirating and liberate one from futile anxiety and misplaced effort. The task for the individual is to live well in the meantime, and instead of dreaming of a future to find satisfaction in life as it is.

  102. @mal
    @128

    Well it went from 250 to 1250 in less than 20 years so I wouldn't say it went nowhere.

    But yeah, if you want it to go higher, you need to phone Nabiullina (Central Bank of Russia Chair) and tell her to spin up those money printers like the Federal Reserve does. It will have to happen eventually anyway.

    Replies: @JL

    The RTS is a dollar based index, really a 90s/00s artifact, so Nabiullina turning on the printing presses will not do anything to move it. The way they’re printing dollars in the US these days, though, might help. The Ruble based index is MOEX (old MICEX), which is doing just fine even with relatively high interest rates. The question of which index matters is one of perspective. For domestic investors, MOEX is pertinent, for foreign investors it would be RTS. Commenter 128 is either behind the times or just out of it.

  103. @AaronB
    @AltanBakshi

    AFAIK, all Christian sects believe in the second coming of Christ, which history is moving towards.

    All Christians also believe the appearance of Christ in time, marked a historical watershed that forever changed the world. For Christians, salvation is an event in time, and history matters.


    have always wondered how hard religion Judaism is for Jews, every suffering happens because God is angry because men have sinned. Thus it can be said that the Judaist religion has quite uncomfortable implications if one thinks about the history of the Jews. Even Maimonides says that Jews or Israel suffers because of their sins
     
    .

    Yes, Judaism is actually very hard on the Jews. Its not just daddy's special boy who can do no wrong.

    The good thing about this idea, is that it saves us from self-defeating follies like antisemitism, where you blame all your problems on someone else, which is a natural tendency of the human mind. It prevents scapegoating and puts responsibility on ourselves, where we can actually do something about it.

    Many Jews are becoming secular and leaving the religion, but the idea that some outside group is manipulating us, like the antisemites think, would never take root in the Jewish community.

    The idea that our misfortunes are our own fault, leads to a kind of self respect and sturdy independence. We definitely acknowledge when someone hurt us or is our enemy, but the kind of self image the antisemite has, as a helpless victim, is not consistent with Jewish self respect, based on the idea that we are authors of our own fate in an ultimate way (God letting others hurt us is punishment for our sins)

    ------

    Diogenes is a fascinating character, and once dismissed Alexander the Great with contempt, who accepted that from him. Clearly his indifference to social morns commanded respect.

    The problem with Cynicism is that it is too "in your face" - it tries to outrage society, so is ultimately still bound by it.

    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn't live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don't even know what we like, we have to discover it.

    -----

    In Buddhism, being a good person is said to chain yourself to Samsara with golden chains rather than iron chains. But its still karmic action and will cause uou to be reborn in the world of suffering.

    Yes, Buddhism is concerned with what does and does not cause suffering instead of evil, but it amounts to the sane thing, and in the Chan texts, it says the root of our suffering is our tendency to distinguish between good and bad.

    So in Buddhism, our obsession with making distinctions between good and bad is whats making us suffer. Ultimately, reality is beyond that.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi, @BlackFlag

    When I say live like an animal, I am referring to the Taoist idea that each animal has its own nature. The nature of humans is not that of dogs. We shouldn’t live like a dog, we should live in a way that is an expression of human nature.

    The main thing is, we should not fight our nature or seek to transcend it. The good life is not a creation of our conscious thinking, its a discovery. We don’t even know what we like, we have to discover it.

    Seems like the nature of humans is to live for a purpose that transcends their own finite life. Why do you advise fighting this nature by living in the Now?

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