HomeArticleDissident Circles Too Often Become Another Nerdy Hobby Group

Dissident Circles Too Often Become Another Nerdy Hobby Group

On the whole and in general, anti-establishment circles are just another nerdy hobby group. Leftist groups, populist groups, conspiracy analysis groups, groups centered around revolutionary ideas–if you actually look at them and look at what’s actually happening in the discussions therein, most of the time it’s nothing more than a bunch of nerds arguing in the exact same nerdy ways as people who are really into Star Wars or video games. And accomplishing just as much.

The mind can turn anything into a toy for the ego, and this is never more clear than in online discussion forums. Even forums that are explicitly dedicated to disentangling from the ego are consistently dominated by Buddhism nerds or Advaita nerds ego-sparring with each other about nerdy aspects of their particular nerdy obsession. This is equally true of anti-establishment discussion forums of all sorts, where there’s generally very little difference between people who spend all day debating whose sub-sub-subfaction of leftism is better or whose coronavirus theory is right and people who argue about Marvel movies or Dungeons & Dragons.

It’s important to hold an acute awareness of why you got into this stuff in the first place. Whatever your individual ideological position, you got into this because you want to actually change things; to change the world, to cause a movement away from humanity’s unhealthy patterns and toward health. It’s not about petty vendettas against opposing factions or subfactions or individuals who don’t see things exactly the same way you do. And your energy expenditure should reflect this.

Generally, people in dissident circles are under the delusion that this whole thing is about having the perfect beliefs in your head. That if you can just have exactly the right opinions about what’s going on, you “win” in some way, so a ton of energy goes toward finding what looks like the very best set of opinions and arguing with anyone who sees things a tiny little bit differently. And that’s just not what this is about.

This thing is about changing the world, and changing you. That’s it. If you’re not actually, concretely doing one of those two things in any given moment while engaging in dissident circles, you’re just participating in another nerdy hobby group, with about as much consequence.

It’s not enough to have the right ideas in your head. That’s a foundation for doing real things, but it’s only a foundation. This adventure should change you. Radically transform you. In real ways that you can watch happen day by day. Otherwise it’s just more glorified escapism, not in any way better than or different from other nerdy obsessions people throw themselves into to escape from reality.

Ultimately what we are doing here, if we’re really doing something real, is bringing consciousness to our species and to ourselves. Shining the light of truth on our dark dysfunctional areas both inside and outside. Winning debates about slight ideological differences or scoring ‘likes’ by dragging some neolib on Twitter or whatever does not accomplish this.

Truth changes the world. Truth changes people. An interest in truth should change you.

Politics should change you. Revolutionary thought should transform you. Dismantling establishment narratives about the world should dismantle your own narratives about yourself. And those changes in you should shape the world, in large and small ways. Anything else is just glorified escapism.

It’s so easy to become hardened and rigid and sink into set patterns, especially in online forums which reward egoically pleasing behavior with the egoic currency of accolades and attention. But we started off on this adventure to actually change things, and bring truth to untruth.

Try asking “What is this changing?” If you can see the potential for movement in yourself or in the world, then it’s a worthy expenditure of energy. If it’s just spinning the same old wheels in the same old ways, then it’s probably not, and maybe your energy should be moved elsewhere.

It’s hard to get this right, and I know I myself have poured energy in directions which in hindsight proved to be entirely fruitless. But the more awareness we bring to what we’re really doing here and what this revolution game is really about, the more useful and productive this adventure can become, both inwardly and outwardly.

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Latest comments

  • Caitlin,
    Your advice is solid, and I thank you for it.
    There will always be nerds who delight in thought-play, just as people delight in nice food or days at the beach. From what I understand, the revolution you are talking about will only ever be grasped by a tiny minority. Most people cannot throw off the narrative, and don’t even want to. All that will happen is that they will accept a new narrative, with no shift at all in terms of critical thought, original thought or wisdom. Even the Buddha could only teach those who were willing to be taught. Everyone else just went along to see what all the fuss was about.
    .
    STEPHEN MORRELL, has a valid perspective. He is saying that certain types of change can happen without enlightenment, and that sometimes a call for self-knowledge is just a front for cowardice, self-interest or apathy. Is he wrong? He is also saying that details can be important. Is he wrong?
    .
    JERRY FISCHER says that “All dharmas are .. mutually-conditioned = interdependent”. This can be interpreted as a restatement of the universal law of karma – impersonal, ever-changing interdependent cause and effect. Each moment creating the next moment.
    .
    The path towards self-awareness is karmic. Action leading to result. The path towards revolution is also karmic. Action leading to result. So long as you have a correct understanding of what results can be expected from which actions, then the path is clear. Both you and STEPHEN MORRELL agree that incorrect understanding of cause/effect is problematic, and you also both agree that action is required for there to be a result. You say that “This thing is about changing the world, and changing you.” You also say “people in dissident circles are under the delusion that this whole thing is about having the perfect beliefs in your head.” So how do you gain “a correct understanding of what results can be expected from which actions” (my words)? The only possible answer must be trial and error (and perhaps some good advice as a starting point). You can’t rely on “perfect beliefs”, but you need to be either changing yourself or changing the world. You don’t understand yourself (isn’t that the assumption underlying a to self-awareness?). You don’t understand the world (because of narrative). So your actions inevitably lead to unexpected outcomes. What we might call mistakes. To some it might look misguided. To some it might look like nerdy quibbling. To some it might look like ego-stroking. And it probably is. But given who and what we are, what else can be expected? Those who seek truth will find truth. Those who seek change may be disappointed in the change that transpires.
    .
    Your words inspire me, and challenge me to be more honest.
    Thanks, Glen.

  • In defense of the nerds.

    Did you know that those who actually made actual revolutions were very nerdy, very ‘sectarian’ and very dogmatic? Yet they made a revolution. Did you know they were very few in number and fought tooth and nail over such programmatic minutiae that seemed so esoteric and bizarre to the ordinary person that they therefore must be ‘insane’ to waste so much energy and time on them? Did you know that for most of their political lives these nerds were marginalised, repressed, ridiculed and otherwise regarded as crackpots and cranks? As ‘nerds’ in today’s parlance? Did you know that the day they became popular, was the day of revolution? Did you know that they actually carried out the revolution when the hour struck and didn’t run away in fright when people were finally taking their ‘dogma’ seriously, when the messy reality of revolution meant bloodshed, repression, ‘excesses’, and all the rest? Lenin and his Bolsheviks were all of this, and no-one to this day has repeated their feat of overthrowing the capitalist order with a workers revolution.

    It’s the ‘nerds’ of revolution who seek to unpack and understand the ramifications of the tiniest sloppiness in formulating of political demands or programs, and of such ‘trivial’ differences between one left faction or tendency versus their closest allies-cum-opponents. Such small, minor, trivial differences mean everything to the nerds, and they inevitably lead to splits, fusions and disillusion among them. That’s how leadership is steeled in struggle.

    Of course such differences mean absolutely nothing to our brainwashed, ‘educated’ ignoramuses whose condescending cynicism knows no bounds, who think, without thinking, that such disputes over ‘trivia’ can only mean unprincipled power struggles among an exclusive, ‘egoic’ coterie. Yet when revolution does come onto the agenda, then such tiny differences magically magnify to the extent of sending their proponents onto opposite sides of the barricades.

    Thus it’s always useful to keep in mind that while a revolutionary situation may seem to be some time off, ‘distant’ even, one can also arise quite suddenly and it will be a polarising moment, far more polarising than what today’s ‘left’ ignoramuses are bemoaning. The small differences of yesterday among ‘nerds’ will come to exercise the minds of a politically aroused and revolutionary-minded population. So it’s a good idea to pay attention to what the ‘sectarian’ disputes really mean and what class interests they might serve, and not simply or exclusively focus on the ulterior or ‘egoic’ motives of their proponents.

    • Hmmm

      The notion that our fate is in the hands of a tiny minority, be it the radical left/right/fascist/communist/zionist/etc., is firmly rooted in historical fact. But even more deeply rooted is the fact that for the most part, these “minorities” are rarely motivated by the best interests of the majority. Instead, these “nerds” are motivated by and act upon self-interest whose only connection to the majority is coincidence. Which is why allowing “tiny minorities” to make decisions for the majority is always doomed to failure. It also explains why the majority suffer so much more than those “tiny minorities”

      Oh and as far revolutions go; tiny minorities, like the zionists who have a stranglehold over much of the Western World today, create revolution, but it is now passe for these nerds to actually do any of the fighting and dying. Instead, they leave that to the majority….

      It time to end the latest minority control in America. An evil cabal which has once again brought us to the brink of revolution because of their delusional and warped belief that they have a right to manipulate the majority to serve themselves. Equally laughable is that they actually believe they have been chosen by god to do so….

      This spiel is of course an historical favorite among the tiny minority of” nerds” who periodically take a shot at ruling the world…..What is remarkable is that over the last 5000 years or so of recorded history it has managed to encompass virtually every major religion on the planet. And yet we still are being fed propaganda that we should head the call of the tiny minority.

      I will stick with the Constitution and Bill of Rights and continue to defend it against all enemies foreign and domestic. And I will ignore the call of the current “tiny minority” which is screaming from every major media orifice that we must except a new reality.

      To borrow a famous quote made in the face of overwhelming odds from a military force very much like the zionists in control today: NUTS!

  • .
    Broadly agree. I drop out of chattering circles that are not aimed at taking peaceful albeit disruptive action towards constructive ends such as M4A and better wages: Strikes, slowdowns, building consensus (but always towards action), worker’s co-operatives, and so on.
    .
    Most of the time, though, I run into well-intended folks who want or need to quibble over very, very detailed policy points, otherwise they’ll decline to move, decline to support third parties, work towards a common purpose. I admit I don’t have much patience, these days.
    .
    Even with how dismal things are, they’re going to have to get much, much worse for people to move and take action, and the oligarchy is far better organized than it was in the 1930s. I’m not optimistic.
    .

  • The people who keep quoting statistics about what age group the virus is infecting the most and where the greatest number of deaths have occurred are missing the point. It is that way because first off they are the most vulnerable due to age or health issues. That is what a virus attacks first and hardest. The most vulnerable. Secondly it is not attacking the other groups because most of those other groups have been sheltered in their homes away from the pandemic. We have seen case after case of healthcare workers catching it who are not old or health compromised because they are where the virus is. The rest of us are not. Now that things are opening back up, the virus will be seeking out the next most vulnerable group. That is what viruses do. That is why many people are being very cautious because of those who think the virus will never infect them and refuse to protect others.

    All dharmas are:
    multiple /mutually-conditioned = interdependent
    impersonal
    impermanent
    Empty in essence, cognizant by nature,arising appearances luminous clear light.

    https://www.npr.org/2020/04/05/823949176/little-demons-death-and-biting-dogs-how-we-picture-disease
    Picture an angry little ball, covered in spikes, perhaps equipped with arms and legs, and definitely an evil grin. That’s how cartoonists and animators are anthropomorphizing Covid-19. Which seems to make the coronavirus unique in our long history of anthropomorphizing diseases.

    Intentionality and evolution https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0376635795000577
    Abstract Three conditions are, according to Dretske, necessary for representations to be causal in an organism’s behavior, and typically not fulfilled by phylogenetic representations: 1.(a) The system must be able to pick up present information; 2.(b) it must use that information to satisfy its various needs and purposes; 3.(c) the piece of information to which the system responds must be available to it in some central way. Condition c is first discussed: it is argued that, in some plausible interpretation of ‘system as a whole’, at least some types of information can shape behavior in a teleological way without being available to the system ‘as a whole’. Then condition b is shown not to provide in itself any way of establishing the privileged status of learning over other kinds of flexible, information-driven processes in goal-oriented behaviors. A third section examines the notion of present versus past causal roles, which are supposed respectively to belong to informational contents and to genetic plans. To this, it is objected that learned correlations share with phylogenetic representations such a temporal gap and that informational content did play a role in recruiting a particular phylogenetic representation to control motor output.)

    61 Comments May 19,2020
    The people who keep quoting statistics about what age group the virus is infecting the most and where the greatest number of deaths have occurred are missing the point. It is that way because first off they are the most vulnerable due to age or health issues. That is what a virus attacks first and hardest. The most vulnerable. Secondly it is not attacking the other groups because most of those other groups have been sheltered in their homes away from the pandemic. We have seen case after case of healthcare workers catching it who are not old or health compromised because they are where the virus is. The rest of us are not. Now that things are opening back up, the virus will be seeking out the next most vulnerable group. That is what viruses do. That is why many people are being very cautious because of those who think the virus will never infect them and refuse to protect others. https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/05/19/nation/mass-reports-873-new-coronavirus-cases-76-new-fatalities-umass-model-predicts-death-toll-will-rise-over-8100/

    • Haha good one Jerry did the mainstream media tell you that? As in reality there is no “new deadly disease called COVID19” from a new virus called sars corona. Clearly no one has died from it.
      Elderly and diseased died and continue to die as they have and continued to do, 150,000 die on this planet everyday is there a death epidemic?

      • The bit about dharmas is authentic. And I doubt if it came from the MSM. Jerry’s cleverness is revealed by placing this quote in the midst of unrelated and out-of-context, (although coherent) snippets of thought. Though impersonal and empty in essence, the mind can turn such truth into a toy for the ego – arising appearances, cognisant by nature. If you are interested in truth, then these truths (about dharmas) can guide you in your journey. If not, or if you have conditioned within yourself a different framework, then these truths will appear as just meaningless distinctions, trivia for nerds to bicker about.
        .
        I take your point about the death epidemic. The statistic that is never reported is that of excess deaths.

  • You can change the ego beliefs as much as you want, change them to any shape, make it interesting( non nerdy) for the egomind but that is not the point as it is just running in circles.

    The point is not to change, but to recognize (one Self as) the changeless , you cannot change the changeless.

    Best said as “Stop acting as someone you are not( ego)ego gratification as its inauthentic living”.

    Or you could see its not a circle but a point.
    All words are just pointers.

    • An Advaita nerd and a Buddhist nerd walk into a bar. The Advaita nerd said “The point is not to change, but to recognize (one Self as) the changeless , you cannot change the changeless.” The Buddhist nerd said “all phenomena are of the nature of emptiness, and all conditioned phenomena are impermanent. There is no changeless self.” The barman said “If you have no change, your glass will remain empty permanently”.
      Both nerds reached into their pockets and found some change.

  • Someones is in wrong circle if the jerking is nerdy.

  • My transformation lasted for about 4 years, nearly 40 years ago. I’m still changing some views and some presentations, but they are within the context of a transformation that let me see beyond a society imposing values upon its people that were consistent only with a positive and necessary view of unfettered capitalism.
    I speak what I believe – and what I have found, through research – to be truth. Unlike most others posting online, I am not a troll for any political party, not only minor parties, some of which seem to be saying what they think will fare well with dissidents. I’m not interested in being right, to prove others wrong – but mainly to see if I can open just one mind. I say what I say full well knowing that someone or more someones, rigidly locked into a false belief system, will assail me, since they are unable to see through the belief system they have built as a shield.

  • Actually, my transformation lasted for about 4 years, nearly 40 years ago. I’m still changing some views and some presentations, but they are within the context of a transformation that let me see beyond a society imposing values upon its people that were consistent only with a positive and necessary view of unfettered capitalism.
    I speak what I believe – and what I have found, through research – to be truth. Unlike most others posting online, I am not a troll for any political party, not only minor parties, some of which seem to be saying what they think will fare well with dissidents. I’m not interested in being right, to prove others wrong – but mainly to see if I can open just one mind. I say what I say full well knowing that someone or more someones, rigidly locked into a false belief system, will assail me, since they are unable to see through the belief system they have built as a shield.

  • Great article. Linking today @https://nothingnewunderthesun2016.com/
    as are most of your articles

  • **CJ** – people are not logical per se, we are psychological.
    THIS is our vulnerability used to manufacturers consent.
    Again, watch ” Century of Self ‘ ‘ to see what we are up against.
    https://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/the-century-of-the-self/
    `
    Speaking truth to POWER doesn’t work.
    Speaking truth to brain-washed folks doesn’t work.
    So the task becomes:
    How to get rid of the brain-washers and their patrons,
    and how to un-brain-wash the masses.
    `
    The most recent example being those of the Hong Kong protesters who look to the U.S. and to their former colonizer, Britain, as the model of ‘ ‘ freedom’ ‘ for Hong Kong.

    • ELKOJOHN, you are one of the few realists I see on this forum and I agree with Blair Schirmer’s comment above: “Even with how dismal things are, they’re going to have to get much, much worse for people to move and take action.”

  • This is the best article I have read for a long time, just when I was feeling jaded about humanity and my self, great thankfulness to all that is real, that a node of that reality still has a direct link to her/his self.

  • I dont waste my time trying to convince other people. Im 60 years old and learned many,many years ago how this is a fruitless enterprise. That does not mean I wont tell you what I believe to be true if you ask.Sadly I live in a world where my government tells me what I can and cant put into my body regarding my pain.Both my legs are shot out and on a good day I can make it to the bathroom. My own personal pet peave is that my government makes certain non harmful drugs that have been used for 1000s of years to raise consciousness illegal. I feel they have no right to hold my consciousness hostage. But again the last thing they want is the multitudes consciousness to be hightened.

    • As the saying goes, ‘Don’t tell them; show them.” For instance, Food Not Bombs — just give people food (communism) and do it without being organized by some authority (anarchism). The spirit is there — it just needs to grow. Look into making and giving away your own drugs.

    • I have not tried such drugs yet, but someday I might want to. I am angry our government has taken away people’s right to choose, purely from a civil liberties point of view. The drug war is separately a great evil. Here in Oregon there is a petition to legalize a therapeutic version of magic mushrooms. They had most of their signatures before the pandemic, and they are trying to gather the rest by having people download, print, and mail. I’m sharing the link around in hopes it will find more people registered to vote in Oregon who haven’t signed yet:

      https://yesonip34.org/

    • .
      Truly sorry to hear it, David. The approach to treating pain in the U.S. is obscene. My experience helping friends showed me that even the legitimate need for the opioid medications that make life bearable means being treated like a criminal. It also means being forced to submit to suspicionless drug testing that violates your 4th Amendment rights and destroys any sense of doctor-patient trust and confidentiality.
      .
      Chris Hedges wrote about The Last Days of Tomas Young, a veteran horribly wounded by an IED blast in Iraq, who was then brutalized by Bush and Cheney’s, then Obama’s VA, and denied necessary pain medication. Young was just one example among millions who suffer thanks to the “War on Drugs,” where opioid hysteria (it’ s more hysteria than it is an epidemic) routinely interferes with intelligent and humane pain management. In any case, very best wishes to you. I’m sure you know the above all too well.
      .

  • One of the ways you keep someone enslaved is by denying them leisure. If people have leisure, they start to get their own ideas about what their lives should be for. That makes them less compliant. They might start to organize politically to change their lives and create new and different opportunities for themselves. To deny people leisure, it’s necessary to deny them mental energy and to deny them education.

    Our system presently accomplishes this in two ways. First, by increasing economic precarity and forcing us to compete ever more heavily for an ever scarcer number of good professional-class jobs, we are pushed to use all of our mental energy trying to satisfy our current or future employers. Nothing is left for leisure, and whenever we have free time we can do nothing but amusement. This is where self-care comes in—self-care is a modern name for amusement. Right now, we feel we have so little free time that it’s necessary even to argue for our right to use some of our free time to prepare ourselves to return to work. Looking out for our own mental health has itself been painted as a radical assertion. But it’s not radical, because self-care is about surviving, about avoiding burnout, about continuing to be a useful tool. It’s amusement, not leisure.

    Second, by focusing our universities ever more heavily on job placement, we are ensuring that our young people spend their time at university cultivating résumés for future employers. This means they don’t receive an education which is about teaching them how to think about what ends are good or worthwhile. Instead, their training is increasingly vocational in nature, even when the degree is a professional degree like engineering, computer science, law, medicine, or business. These degrees are still about job placement. They don’t prepare students to think about what kind of ends are worth having. Students’ degrees aren’t leisurely, and when they have free time outside of their degrees their energy is depleted and they are pushed to engage in amusement and self-care to rectify their mental states. Their available time even for amusement is shrinking and rates of mental illness are increasing at universities.

    The result is that many people—including many of the people with secure professional-class jobs—never acquire a substantive set of ends for themselves beyond amusement itself. They end up like overgrown high schoolers. In high school, everyone is tired and stressed out all the time, and the result is that high school students are desperate for amusement. It’s so important to them that when they are away from school they be permitted to de-stress, and if their home environment is toxic and disallows this the demand for amusement can spill out into all sorts of unhealthy activities. High school students build friend groups around shared amusements. If you watch the same shows, play the same games, read the same books, listen to the same music, buy the same clothes, or do the same drugs, you’re cool. If not, you’re lame. A mark of maturity is moving on from these aesthetic identifiers and acquiring a life project that is bigger and more meaningful than “have a good time this weekend.” But because high school kids spend most of their time and energy doing pointless work assigned to them by other people, they are starved of leisure and desperate for amusement. So their lives are built around instant gratification, hedonism, and self-care.

    We are increasingly denying people the temporal and educational resources to grow beyond this, and now adults have childish interests and build their lives around gratifying themselves by purchasing garbage which vaguely relates to whatever lame thing they do on the weekend. There’s little ambition beyond this. On some level they know that living their lives for the weekend is more than a bit vacuous. The result is a superabundance of culture which is nihilistic, absurdist, or existentialist in tone, alongside a thriving industry of YouTube pseudointellectuals selling young people books which promise to give their lives meaning. Politically, it also gives rise to new radical and reactionary political movements that sell young people on making their online lives about social causes. But these people don’t have leisure. They are mentally unwell, lack access to non-vocational education, and must spend the bulk of their free time on amusement. Without these things, they cannot think about different sets of ends in a sophisticated way or decide among them. So even in their attempts to find meaning, these people end up slaves—foot soldiers in other people’s cults.

    A common theme among self-destructive anti-authoritarians is a deterioration toward self-absorption. An obsession with one’s moods can result in feeling even more overwhelmed by pain, which fuels compulsive unwise actions. A sense of humor is vital for anti-authoritarian survival and joy, and, when self-absorption displaces their sense of humor, anti-authoritarians find it painful to be with themselves—and so too do others, which, in a vicious cycle, makes anti-authoritarians even more self-loathing, which creates more pain and makes anti-authoritarians more vulnerable to unwise actions. This can include a lack of attention to physical health and personal finances, along with unwise relationships with abusive and exploitative people. Relationships are critical. If an anti-authoritarian lacks anyone they trust, they are highly vulnerable to unwise actions fueled by their pain. And if they trust untrustworthy people, that too can result in self-destructive behaviors.

    One of the central problems in left-wing organizing today is that by putting the lived experience of the oppressed at the center of things, left-wing organizations suffer from a persistent leisure shortfall. When our organizations are run by mentally ill people trying to use left-wing politics to amuse themselves or fill existential voids, they become vehicles for self-care instead of real political organizations with plausible strategic orientations. We need some people in the left to do the thinking, or we won’t be able to achieve the institutional and policy changes that are necessary to widen access to leisure. But leisure is in short supply precisely because we haven’t yet achieved these changes, and therefore competent, thoughtful leadership is always a scarce commodity in left-wing politics. The more the left fails, the worse this becomes, because as the position of the worker is eroded by right-wing economic policy, life becomes more precarious, competition becomes fiercer, and amusement deficits pile ever higher. The longer we stay on the amusement treadmill, the harder it is to get off, both individually and collectively. Slavery degrades the slaves, and self-care does not free the self, much less the other.

    Of course, being crazy is probably necessary—just need to be the right kind of crazy. It may seem crazy to risk your safety, your life, for that of a stranger, but if one firmly believes that it is the right thing to do, then it is in fact crazy to not do so. Morality and insanity, within the current frameworks of thought that govern our perception, go hand in hand; they are the catalysts for societal change. The crazy, the marginalized, the suicidal, the forgotten—the most necessary ingredients for producing foundational, revolutionary change which strikes at the core of our structures and ripples out across the globe. It is those they label as crazy who can see the only way forward. John Brown was crazy and fought for a deeply moral cause. John Brown lives on in each one of you crazy people. Jesus lives on in each one of you crazy people. We will be morally insane, the forgotten-no-more; the ground will shake and the sky will thunder, old ways ripped asunder.

    So here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.

    November 2024: We’re the right kind of crazy.

    http://www.mediafire.com/file/k1omyaf0r73shvk/Twenty-Twenty-four.pdf/file

  • The by far most concentrated, largest, and pointless waste of effort and energy is politics. Enormous investment is devoted to which psychopath should be given authority over our lives, with never a flicker of thought that perhaps none should. That no one has a higher claim over your life and how you live it than you do. Any who presume to do not have a scintilla of concern for your welfare, except as it may serve theirs. We can govern ourselves or be governed by monsters.

    • And how do working people seize power if they are not organised and have leaders?

      • They could take back their own power. Great leaders exist only because people follow them.

        • Some revolutionary leaders have a vision to share and a few vague ideas but not a successful, clearly defined plan of action for achieving that goal. Those who work for change must share the Great Liberator’s Vision and Mission and this must become a grass-roots, social, spiritual, tactical movement, networking around the world. The revolutionary Liberator I refer to is Yeshua, a Hebrew name which means LIBERATOR. Unfortunately, His revolutionary strategy and tactics are so brilliant, exceptional and powerful that this is way above the mental abilities even for highly intelligent and well-educated people who fail to grasp what Yeshua said and meant. Read more of this here: http://www.wisdompage.com/2013%20Articles/Molyneaux%20essay.pdf

  • Jarring disconnect between Caitlin’s post and much of the following commentary. Wonder whether Caitlin considered cutting off comments on this particular piece, assuming the blogging format she uses so allows.

    • Sometimes a surprising disconnect helps to underline the content for those who’s eyes can see.

      • Me again! Also, when you feel that jarring disconnect, it is a sign that you are holding onto a perfect belief. This is an opportunity to examine that belief and let go of it.

  • http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/05/war-of-attrition.html
    The pattern which seems to be governing this terrifying-pandemic is that of differential damage, imposing massive damage and losses on groups which are non-tributaries to a particular power structure.
    The US seeks to impose unlimited losses upon Chinese interests. Fear must remain in place at home, to assure compliance of the masses, so actual cures, or relief from fear are banned on YouTube for going against WHO/CDC edicts.
    WHO/CDC have been harmful, not helpful to public health, to date.
    The overarching need of the current elites is to maintain power and control through this crisis, preferably to increase it.
    That form of insecurity and grasping too hard, while obscuring or outlawing remedies they don’t control SHOULD be their downfall. We’ll see how this plays out.
    Let me clarify that I see all elites as amoral and self serving.
    None of them appear to represent the interests of life on Earth. Sociopaths all the way down…
    I’m backing cheap public health measures like vitamin-D, zinc, NAC and growing fresh vegetables.

    Craig Murray points out that only PROFITABLE “solutions” to this crisis will be considered by the financial masters.
    Please submit conforming proposals!
    …the UK and the US are attempting to hide their vaccine and treatment research results from the rest of the world to make money out of them.
    ​ ​Much has been written about the possibility for a new and better kind of world to emerge after coronavirus. Yet our governments cannot conceive of any model for fighting this threat to the whole world, other than the capitalist, money-making model. The much-touted “race to develop a vaccine” is not a race to save lives. It is a race to make billions.
    ​ ​The United States and the United Kingdom are working in all international fora to head off efforts to pool global research and to make any vaccine or medicine a good for the world.
    … the failure to set up a worldwide shared scientific database on all coronavirus vaccine and medicine research, and the failure to set up a prior agreement on free manufacture worldwide of effective resulting vaccines and treatments, is the most revealing fact about the entire coronavirus episode.
    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2020/05/profiting-from-coronavirus/

    • Who are these Elites you talk about are you talking about 100. 1000. 10,000 a million. How many? If you can’t give numbers come up with names. You got to know who it is your wanting to change. You all have a safe and peaceful day.

    • It’s critical to understand that there are not just a couple of pharma drugs that are effective in the treatment against Covid-19 but also a natural very safe cheap remedy that’s BOTH a preventative and therapeutic against Covid-19, the proper use of vitamin C — see orthomolecular d ot o r g (click on ‘Library’ and then ‘News Releases’ and read the editions from about February of 2020 on forward)

      A lot of this is based on Nobel laureate Linus Pauling’s pioneering work. HOWEVER….. everyone should keep the following in mind, especially now with the corona scamdemic going on: there are many bogus voices around who strive to distract the public from (1) the value of vitamin C therapy and (2) the fact that Pauling’s VALID work with vitamin C supplementation has been “falsified” by data distortions and lies, and he as a person (a double Nobel laureate) has been slandered as some deluded idiot by the criminal medical establishment and its countless quackwatch shills, lackeys, ignoramuses, and trolls for decades and it continues today — search for the scholarly report “2 Big Lies: No Vitamin Benefits & Supplements Are Very Dangerous” by Rolf Hefti (a published author of the Orthomolecular Medicine News organization). The same corrupt criminal people (and their uninformed followers) are behind the organized suppression, lies, and half-truths spread about the value of vitamin C therapy against covid-19 — see orthomolecular d ot o r g

      But you can’t discredit the facts with lies. That only exposes and discredits the liars (see citations above).

      The fact that we are dealing with a VERY CRIMINAL OFFICIAL POWER STRUCTURE (the Deep State, governments, WHO, official corporate medicine, the mainstream media, paid off scientists, etc) that constantly hoodwinks the unsuspecting public with MANY BIG LIES can easily be recognized by anyone with two working brain cells when reading this one sentence by a former US government official, Paul Craig Roberts, Ph.D., in his article ‘The Cost of Big Pharma’s Covid-19 Vaccine Will Be Paid in Lives and in Billions of Dollars’:

      “A corrupt establishment and media that can sell us 9/11, Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction, Iranian nukes, Assad’s use of chemical weapons, a Russian invasion of Ukraine, Russiagate and a large number of other lies can also sell us on locking up a successful treatment in the closet while we await a vaccine.”

      or from another article of his:

      “In “freedom and democracy” America there is only official truth, and it is a lie. […]. […] when I told the truth that Russiagate was a hoax, which it has proved to be, an anonymous website, possibly a CIA or NATO operation called “PropOrNot,” included this website among its fake list of 200 “Russian agents/dupes.” The Washington Post, a believed long-time CIA asset, hyped the PropOrNot revelation as if it were the truth. With “Russiagate” in full hype, the purpose was to scare readers away from those of us who were exposing the hoax. […]. The way those with agendas control the explanations is by shouting down those who provide objective accounts. Social media is part of the censorship. Explanations out of step with official ones are labeled “abusive,” and in “violation of community standards.” In other words, truth is unacceptble. […]. Everyone who uses social media is by their use supporting censorship. Facebook imposes fascist censorship in order to protect official explanations. The presstitutes and universities do the same. In America truth has lost its value. […]. Even a public health threat like coronavirus is politicized. […]. If you are Big Pharma, NIH, CDC, or the research professionals dependent on grants from these sources, you want a vaccine, not a cure. This means a long wait, assuming an effective and safe vaccine is possible. […]. The hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), zinc, and intravenous vitamin C treatments, which have proved to be effective, are badmouthed by Big Pharma and its minions. In other words, the profit agenda over-rides health care and the saving of lives. […]. It is all about money. There are no profits for Big Pharma or a chance for patents for Dr. Fauci unless inexpensive HCQ, zinc, and Vitamin C can be sidelined.”

      But having true knowledge like that is not enough in itself, YOUR BEHAVIOR must reflect the implications of that knowledge…. ESPECIALLY NOW IN THE FACE OF THIS MASSIVE EVIL SCAM. As the American social critic Paul Rosenberg pointed out in his article ‘Nothing Changes As Long As You Obey’:

      “I hear the same complaints about politicians that you do. And while I understand them, the fact is that complaining accomplishes almost nothing. And there is a very simple reason why complaining has no real effect: BECAUSE THE COMPLAINERS KEEP RIGHT ON OBEYING. As long as you obey, the things you complain about will keep on happening.”

      And there are the profound words of Martin Luther King, Jr.:

      And Edmund Burke said:

      “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good people do nothing.”

  • I guess that is why the saying “Talk is cheap” came into being.

  • Dissent, revolution, oppression, colonialism and patriarchy.
    An alternative to Caitlin’s is Portuguese Boaventura’s End of the Cognitive Empire. It takes some work to understand it: the translation causes hardship handling word choices.
    Assange and de Noli, Professorsblogg.com, say become a Wikileaker, that’s how to fight, not legal wranglings.
    Jim Lafferty: it took twenty thousand body bags bringing hundreds of thousands into the streets to force the administrations to stop Vietnam
    And I say turn the tables and demand Julian’s immediate freedom or extradition. Get him to the USA and let us hold their feet to the fire. The lawyering result: ten years of incarceration. The Emperor is naked.

  • I know a lot of Trotskyists. They are sincere and intelligent. But worthless in the physical world. They couldn’t organize and lead a bathroom line. They posture as being so wise, ever lecturing others about what the correct line is. But you won’t find any of this lot on an organizing picket line at 6 AM.

    Walk your talk. As best you can. Or get called for being a blowhard.

    • They are MUCH worse than merely “worthless”. They are like a disease that prevents the Common People from uniting to organize a genuine resistance to the power of the Elites.

      I’m not talking about only ‘the Trots’, the Socialist Workers’ Party, but ALL the existing ‘Marionette Left’ that is dancing on the ends of the Elites’ own strings, helping them to “divide and rule”.

      These people are ‘religious’ fanatics, and their ‘religious’ beliefs have just become ever more bizarre as their years of marginalized failure have piled up into decades, and then into eras. (As a leftist since the late 1960s, I’ve seen this Marionette Left ‘religion’ develop into the bizarro entity it has now fully become).

      They are still promoting Marxist ‘socialism’, for example, even though they have completely abandoned Marx’s primary Class Analysis, in favor of ever more divisive and hateful Identity Politics, which doesn’t merely abandon the working class, but actually demonizes working people for having been duped by the Elites’ propaganda.

      I am trying hard to make people ‘on the Left’ realize that this Marionette Left is the FIRST dragon we must slay! We can NEVER organize in resistance, let alone revolution, as long as this Marionette Left’s Identity Politics is helping our Enemy, the Elites, to divide the Common People into mutually hateful tribal factions.

      Identity Politics is a blatantly racist and blatantly sexist ‘religion’ that denounces racism and sexism, and demonizes any among the Common People who will not ‘drink the Identity Politics kool-aid’. This is a full-blown ‘religious’ CULT! Pure and simple.

      Any person who does not believe, for example, that a person with a penis has the RIGHT to shower naked alongside high school girls with natural female genitals, (or vice versa), is ‘branded’ as an evil ‘sexist’, and is therefore defined as an ‘enemy’ of the American Left.

      THAT is how dingbatshit CRAZY the American Marionette Left has gotten.

      Anyone who does not yet ‘see’ how this Marionette Left is our Enemy’s, the Elites’, FIRST line of defense, still needs to ‘open their eyes’, to expand their consciousness, to the reality we face.

      How can we EVER organize any genuine resistance as long as these dingbat crazy ideologues dominate the Left?

      How can an AUTHENTIC Left be built so long as people continue to drink the kool-aid of this dingbat crazy religious cult?

      Yea … I know … ‘The Trots’ have their own ‘religious’ sect. They are but one sect among many on the Marionette Left who dance so enthusiastically on the ends of their own Enemy’s strings.

      If all the self-appointed ‘leaders’ of the Marionette Left were actually on the Elites’ payroll, the Elite Paymasters would not have them change their behavior one iota. Hmm … Come to think of it … How do all these self-appointed ‘leaders’ pay their rent? Who are the primary donors who pay the salaries of all these ‘Executive Directors’, (and how their ever thirsty egos do LOVE their job titles), of all the tax subsidized 501(C) corporations that butter the Marionette Left’s bread?

      Soros is only one. Even the surviving Koch brother, (Charles … David recently died), is now funding the Marionette Left’s tax-subsidized corporations.

    • Let me try to tell a ‘quick’ story. (A writer always has trouble being ‘quick’, because she or he knows that essence of truth lies in the details).

      In the early years of the new century, after 9/11, I had hung up my own tool-belt, laid down my trusty 20 oz Eastwing hammer, and shut down my small construction contracting business. I had seen, first hand, the devastation that the Elites’ deliberately engineered tsunami of immigration had already, (even at that time), wrought in the lives of American working people, which has just gotten worse since then. First the Elites exported all the jobs they could, then they used the terms of NAFTA to engineer the mass migration of fully 10% of the ENTIRE population of Mexico into the US, in effect importing a massive quantity of ‘excess labor’ to break the back of American Labor.

      First they exported all the jobs they could, then they imported 12-15 million destitute foreign workers to do those jobs that could not be exported.

      Up until about 2006, (I think it was), I was working with groups of dissident American autoworkers, who were trying to get their collusive union, the UAW, to ‘fight back’! I lived in Kansas City (my hometown) at that time, and I was driving thousands of miles, all over the Midwest, to towns like Peoria, (site of a Caterpillar plant), and other small towns where plants were located, to attend meetings with groups of dissident autoworkers, to try to help them organize ‘fight back’ resistance. (My writing was distributed in many a newsletter, and in many handbills printed up and handed out at plant gates).

      Every meetings I attended was dominated by a handful of people who would give long, (seemingly interminable), speeches on why these American working people must embrace and espouse marxist socialism.

      These groups consisted on not just line workers, but also of many men and women who had been the heroic leaders of some of the most hard fought strikes in American Labor history.

      One day I sat down to lunch with a man who had been a past president of his UAW local, and had once actually led his entire plant of thousands of people out on a wildcat strike.

      “This is how it always is, Ray”, he said to me. “We can never get anything done in our meetings. We can never make any headway, because “the marxists”, (the actual term he used), ALWAYS show up, and it only takes a couple or three of them to bore everyone to death preaching their marxism, and pretty soon people stop showing up at all, until every meeting consists of just the steering committee that called the meeting and a couple of marxists”.

      Beaten bloody by the one-two, left hook-right cross combination of jobs exported and foreign workers imported, the dissidents failed to get the UAW to ‘fight back’. (A whole ‘long story’ in itself, and most people on the Left do not even understand ‘bupkis’ about the blatantly collusive nature of the people who now run most unions). In 2006, the UAW signed the contract the dissidents were fighting. The old workers were offered a $30k buyout, and wages for new-hires were cut in HALF!

      But ‘the marxists’ had already gotten the whiff of a new constituency. They fully embraced not just the desperate immigrants who, like all labor ‘scabs’ do, had helped defeat American working people. The Marxists started their Marionette Dance on the ends of their own Enemy’s strings. They embraced not merely the immigrants, (who themselves are very good people who had been victimized by the Elites), the Marionette Left fully embraced immigration itself, and soon began refining racist and sexist Identity Politics.

      And any American working people who wanted to ‘fight back’ for their own families security found themselves ‘demonized’, as ‘racists’, by the Marionette Left. Any American working people who recognized that tens of millions of foreign workers being imported was devastating the lives of American workers’ families were demonized as racists.

      It did not take long for a clever Snake Oil peddler like Trump to recognize the opportunity. It has been the American Marionette Left that has provided Trump with the opportunity to bamboozle the largest faction of the American working class into forming up into his ‘power base’.

      “I can hire half the working class to kill the other half”. — J Gould, 19th Century American Industrialist.

      • “The old workers were offered a $30k buyout, and wages for new-hires were cut in HALF!”

        jesus h christ…

      • Caliban, your posts are 100% spot-on. I wish more people could see what you clearly see. It’s obvious to anyone who’s been fighting for labor over the years. We will never win the war of labor over capital if every discussion is framed around identity politics. It is a poison fed to us by capital and their lackeys in the media.

        • Thanks for these comments, JM.

  • Nothing can be done, the common man is so stupid that he handed complete power to the Imperialists and their capitalist owners. Any attempt to organize will be monitored. Wait for the inevitable disaster and hope to survive. Go from there.

    • The elites were already in a power struggle just-past-the-end-of-growth when this militarized lab virus leaked out of Ft. Detrick, and they have been playing grab-ass since last fall. There is hope for us sheeple in this mess, a fighting-chance.
      http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/05/answers.html

  • To bring about changes, power is essential. We have examples in history of revolutions. A quote of Lenin’s comes to mind. If you want the majority of people to support change you must first control the state. In which case the transfer of power requires sufficient numbers to do what is required to take the power but the changes in peoples thinking might take decades if not generations after that but its impossible to do this without first having the power. I was wondering what your ideas are for achieving this?

    • The system has laid the groundwork for it’s own destruction, if only those who have had a chance to step through the door first realize it.

      The narratives which animate the masses are weak and rotted to the core, they only continue to control because we continue to stick with the same old tired nonsense.

      What most fail to realize is the response to failure is not always dialing things back—it’s to get even more radical, even more demanding, even more uncompromising.

      So lets be radical, let’s be uncompromising. Let’s seize that power by whatever means ultimately prove necessary. And when we do, let’s tear the door off the hinges so it can never be easily shut again.

  • To bring about changes, power is essential. We have examples in history of revolutions. A quote of Lenin’s comes to mind. If you want the majority of people to support change you must first control the state. In which case the transfer of power requires sufficient numbers to do what is required to take the power but the changes in peoples thinking might take decades if not generations after that but its impossible to do this without first having the power.

    • Just surviving the transition is pretty key, too.

  • The ” owners and the masters ” have groupings that get things done. Money and power make it easy for them to herd and brainwash us peons. ” Going against the tide ” is way too strenuous on any individual for them to be concerned about who else is doing so. I am old but I got more done by doing things my way alone. Help is needed in any endevour but the commitment and dedication needed to divert or change ” the tide ” must be deep within you to keep you ” on point ” towards your goal and never sidetracked by anything or anyone. Ms Johnstone’s dedication and strength are those of a leader for the betterment of all humanity.

    • Those who work for change must share the Great Liberator’s Vision and Mission and this must become a grass-roots, social, spiritual, tactical movement, networking around the world. The revolutionary Liberator I refer to is Yeshua, a Hebrew name which means LIBERATOR. Unfortunately, His revolutionary strategy and tactics are so brilliant, exceptional and powerful that this is way above the mental abilities even for highly intelligent and well-educated people who fail to grasp what Yeshua said and meant. Read more of this here: http://www.wisdompage.com/2013%20Articles/Molyneaux%20essay.pdf

  • Can’t say i go along with this one…i think our minds and the entire world is papered with attempted conspiracies. more than not. half of what capitalists do is conspiring to defraud someone somehow.
    who took windows from Apple? if that story is even true. we waited 100 years to find out the USSMaine remember the Maine? it was bombed from the inside out. because no divers could drop that deep until that time.
    do not trust anyone if you are shopping for a used car. who put the poison into those little Tylenol bottles?
    inside jobs and patsies are well-rehearsed for centuries old kinda gig.
    i believe Booth shot Lincoln but someone let him in and where were the president’s loyal guards. maybe our best prez. and who shot Gandhi? one shot and the Entirety of India is free! one shot. heroes just gotta go. Qui bono? Pearl Harbor. we knew their code way before that entire massive fleet arrived. lotsa dead young men to start a friggin war. if we’d a let Japan pump oil out of indonesia, what was our fight in that deal…..? it would not have happened. except stupid Hitler was attacking Russia. And France.
    he reminds me of Trump. exchange jews for Mexicans. and grandiose speeches for tweets.
    lies are everywhere in this world and by this president. i could never relax in this world.
    become a zombie! that’s timothy leary’s idea. and they will follow. build it an’ they will come. ghosts came.
    nope is better than false hope. anytime. just tell me the facts. Monroe Doctrine, IMF, USAID, WorldBANK?
    andmore…CIA DOD. lies abound. And LSD always tells you you don’t need it.
    wonder what Bush And Cheney were talking about: how to get more money to the black people?
    nope. even Oblama was a little bit trigger happy. Qaddafi wanted a pan African currency. Nathan Rothschild said once–“I don’t care what party wins, he who controls the currency controls the Gov’t and I control the currency.” Kissinger called a very big chunk of humanity “useless eaters.” so we got to keep our eyes open for shenanigans. the NEW WEIRD ORDER. They even advertised a new a Feral Harbor was needed.
    the Bush and bin Laden families were friends in a course way, i suppose.
    Why were the cout columns whisked away so fast…and to India and China as if we could not melt steel ourselves? hell, we had just done that. How come #7 went down at all? not the same technical theory for sure. it just happened to have inside 400 FEC investigations on Enron Accounting i US corpos. all gone cases closed. rewards for shut up.
    Iraq was a complete lie from the start when we put Saddam in to when we took him out and not until today do we leave. promise me we’re leaving. soon. huh. Romney gave him the WMDs if you wanna call nerve gas that. but he used it on our new friends the Kurds. and then we also had to attack Afghanistan for 17 years then make a treaty with the meanest ass-holes on Earth. this will cost the women their many lives.
    so one might ask WHY?
    Why all the bullshit?
    Unless one is asleep at the wheel…in our nascent democracy. no one does it for ya in a democracy. this is do it yourself GOV’T. and we gotta start asking “why?”
    heck, i’m beginning to think the entire Dept of Defense is a conspiracy. More accurate to call it DOO….huh…for Offense.
    BTW, who shot the guy who shot the guy who really did not shoot JFK? oh, and who strangled Epstein?
    Who was the lady in the white and black polka dot dress? Who killed Allende?
    Two Indian men arrested recently, very recently, by FBI, for stealing samples from North Carolina U. of neo corona viruses…and the FBI arrests them for uhmmm…conspiracy!
    Mrs. Qiu got away. with it. 1,000 Talents. Bond, James Bond. Died of natural causes. Who found James Webb?

    Winnipeg.
    Dr. No may have won.

  • Tune in… turn on… and drop out… I’m old now but I remember this from my youth

    I’m not old enough to remember the depression but I think general strikes were very effective for getting poor people what they needed to get through the depression and it just occurred to me that it may be the perfect time for this to work again…. because they need to open up so badly… and there is a lot of sympathy for all the people who are really suffering so old people like me (who don’t work) can stay home in sympathy.

    I love your work, thank you so much. This could bring the whole house of cards down. It’s time for a change

  • Yes, but until we have some organizational structures we can gather around in order to actually work together to change the world, this is all just rhetoric. Radical politics have always been mired in rhetoric. “This is not about talk, this is about ACTION!!!!!” – and then they just keep talking. So much of it is futile. We need organization and coordinated efforts. And to get that, we have to agree about a number of basic points of ideology and objective – and action. So leading intellectuals such as yourself, Caitlin, should formulate the tenets of a new group or party that like-minded people can rally around. This is what is needed. And it probably can’t get off the ground until there is a group of very ideologically strong and close-knit people to keep it all together and on point. A unifying vision is what such a group need in order to become a movement.

    • Sweden, with voluntary social distancing, approaches “herd immunity” sooner than other countries. A lot of Swedes take vitamin-D and fish oil supplements… They figure you get the same number of deaths eventually, no matter what.
      “I think there is relatively little chance of stopping this whatever measures we take.”
      https://www.unz.com/mwhitney/in-the-race-for-immunity-sweden-leads-the-pack/

      ​Reminder: When the very rich are done with us, they plan to leave us behind
      (or worse, but I don’t think it will work for them. dead end)​
      https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2020/05/reminder-when-the-very-very-rich-are-done-with-us-they-plan-to-leave-us-behind.html

      Hamsters in cages with coronavirus blown onto them by fans have 2/3 reduction in cases of infection if they wear masks.
      https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-05-hamster-masks-coronavirus-scientists.html

      [action-oriented blogger pictured with curing concrete work slab by workshop by Mexican avocado orchard] http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/05/war-of-attrition.html

    • Indeed, a new vision is needed. The Power of Narrative will be shattered, the wheel will be broken. For those that truly want this nation of hate and violence to end, self-defense, conflict resolution, and revolutionary justice are proven ways forward. It is important that the way through these tragic times not just be personal but also collective. Everything in this book is hacked, remixed, and presented from the author’s point of view. Challenge it! There is no one way forward, just powerful ideas.

      All you need to do to start is to tear this text apart. Praise what you like, eviscerate what you don’t. Run it through a grinder and see what comes out. Spread it, mock it, preach it, shame it:

      http://www.mediafire.com/file/k1omyaf0r73shvk/Twenty-Twenty-four.pdf/file

    • Tue, Caitlin is talking about her vision in every post. You can comment on every post. Maybe you can offer what you see as the tenets of a new group. Just a first draft. Put Caitlin’s ideas into your own words. A unifying vision for a group can come from the group itself, make it a group project. You yourself can be a leader.

  • So the object here is to get people who are manifesting escapist behavior to stop by telling them to stop? Because it’s not being productive toward a professed goal of theirs?
    If someone is engaging in escapist behavior, doesn’t that imply that there’s something freaking them out–meaning maybe they can’t stop the escapist behavior even if they want to?
    Emotions always override intellect; if that weren’t so, none of the typical schmucks that run for office would ever get elected. If people were capable of looking dispassionately at the CVs of candidates and voting as they would decide if they were hiring someone for a job at a company, the current crop of politicians would all lose their jobs.
    The thing the politicians hate most about Trump is that he’s so out there about it. He’s blowing the cover, the patina of niceness they’ve relied on for generations to keep things calm while they systematically looted the population.
    But anyway.
    Maybe the task at hand is to identify and try to deal with whatever is freaking people out to the point of reverting to escapism. If they find that it’s safe to poke their heads back into reality, they probably will.

    • The Buddhists affirm “I come to the Dhamma for refuge”. The deep meaning of this is “Reality is perfectly safe” (not to deny that people get hurt and die, there is a deep meaning there). By the time you fully understand this, you are already enlightened. It’s like dying to yourself and awakening to eternal life. It’s like laying your burden down. For most people, unfiltered reality looks very scary, and it’s always been like that.
      .
      I think you are onto something when you say “the task at hand is to identify and try to deal with whatever is freaking people out”. What do you think that is? You imply that it’s emotional, not rational. If that’s the case, then dealing with the intellectual stuff won’t help. Sounds like some sort of counselling or therapy could be useful. Will only work if the person has decided to engage in the process. You personally can learn and develop listening, communication or counselling skills that can be useful from time to time. Sometimes just a smile or a kind word is enough. Make sure it’s for them and not for you. This is where your own self-awareness comes in. Also, be real. Your motivation is to encourage them to face reality. Don’t sugar-coat it with fantasy. One powerful understanding is that you can feel emotions fully and remain safe. Fear is scary but it is just an emotion. It’s not who you are, and it is not a reliable indicator of reality. You can just experience it like you might experience wind or rain or sunshine. It’s just fear, and this is what it feels like – scary. Once you learn this, you can experience fear (or any other emotion) without being burdened by it. Once you learn this, you can teach it to others. There is no magic cure. It’s slow and incremental.

  • excellent.

  • I continue to be impressed by your writing and by your ability to adapt, evolve, and advance.

  • In him (that is, in God) was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
    –John 1:4-5

    this verse appears to be telling us that our “light,” that is our very awareness, is a characteristic of God. If so, I think this is an extremely useful thing to know.

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