Friday Night Fragments #4

At the end of my last post, I tried to tell you to avoid toxic relationships with crazies, but I couldn’t bring myself to say it. Why not? Because you learn more about yourself and about human nature if you spend some time in the kind of relationship normal people fear than if you spend years studying psychology.

This is not a good reason to do it, of course, but the world belongs to those who dare. Many avenues are closed to those who are not strong enough, but the far extremes of understanding require sacrifice on the part of those who would seek such knowledge.

If you dare walk that path, be sure that you have the strength to endure it.

More on this coming soon.

Speaking of things that tie into previous posts, it turns out that women enjoy increased sexual competitiveness if they possess dark triad traits. This, of course, leads to an interesting question: if both men and women enjoy greater sexual success if they are inclined towards dark triad traits, why don’t people possess these traits in higher quantities than they already do?

Obviously, the degree to which dark triads traits are not hereditary will temper this, as well as the degree to which society rewards a lack of dark triad traits with reproductive success (to say nothing of the discrepancy between sexual success and reproductive success). What happens in a society that has no checks against dark triad behavior, though?

I really must get around to writing about this Sigma Point thing.

I mentioned in my last Friday Night Fragments that I tend towards anti-authoritarianism in my personal life. What draws me to Neoreaction, then, which does not shy away from advocating authoritarian solutions? Two things. One, after a lifetime of dealing with idiotic authority figures and incompetent authorities, I am sick of being told what to do by people who are dumber and more foolish than me. This, of course, means that I have nothing but respect and admiration for those few authority figures who are competent and capable, and I think we should have a lot more of them. I may swing towards anti-authoritarianism, but a competent and capable authority acting in a reasonable manner is fine in my book (whether this makes me a true anti-authoritarian is debatable, but given my disdain for our current authorities, I do not shy away from labeling myself as such).

The second point is that any true anti-authoritarian these days has to be anti-progressive, for progressivism is the mandate upon which our authorities base their legitimacy.

One of the search terms that I got hit with this week was “neoreaction mbti”. I can only assume this person was trying to get some data on the Myers-Briggs classification for most neoreactionaries (and not a neoreactionary version of the Myers-Briggs, which seems highly-unnecessary). While I can’t speak to hard data, I think it’s fairly safe to postulate that INTJ and INTP are represented far out of proportion to the general population, with a couple ENTJs and other types thrown in there as well (plus one ENTP who did a fairly good job of hiding it until he started putting out a paean to his lack of focus every Friday evening).

Speaking of search terms, another search term I got hit with this past week was “legionnaire with wild tiger movie”. I have no idea what movie this person was thinking of, but whatever it is, it sounds fantastic and I want to see it, so if any of you have any idea which film this might be, please let me know.

There are those who claim that the truth is illuminating, and who will then turn around and claim that here is such a thing as a dark truth. A contradiction arising from a bad metaphor? Perhaps. But if we think this is an insufficient explanation and play with the metaphor a bit, we are forced to either conclude that the truth is light and that we are too dark to be able to comprehend it without pain, or that the truth is dark and that we are not strong enough to be able to handle it without a filter of some kind. Either one seems unpleasant in its own way, and I bet you can predict with decent accuracy which interpretation people will lean towards based on whether or not they believe in God.

Sooner or later, there is going to be a full-scale conflict between and Private Military Corporation and a state military. I’m tempted to say that the future profitability of private contractors is going to hinge on the outcome, but it seems more likely to predict that either way, the PMC market is looking forward to a bountiful future.

Related to my last point, every business has an incentive not only to expand their market share, but also to increase market size. There is a major incentive to create new business. Any business that purports to solve a problem not only has incentive to perpetuate the issue, but exacerbate it.

This same phenomenon is why NGOs have incentive to hinder international development, feminists have incentive to make women worse off, and weight loss companies have incentive to promote non-permanent solutions.

This incentive is tempered by professional reputation, which rests on being able to solve said problem (and has become even more important in this age in which information is so readily available and so easily dispersed). It is this tension that explains much in the way of consumer/corporation behavioral dynamics. It is also a reason to trust small mom & pop establishments, which rely much more on reputation and quality products & services than market share, advertising tactics, and economies of scale.

How is this related to PMCs? Well, do PMCs benefit from a peaceful world with little in the way of conflict and instability?

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to date a horse? Aimless Gromar wants us to know. Is there something that he’s not telling us, perhaps?

Kidding aside, I got two big takeaways from this. The first is that feminist logic of verbal consent is ableist:

“Second, if someone is mute and can’t write or give you a verbal response, are you allowed to have sex with them? Even if they are an adult and mentally sound? Are words the only way to get consent?”


There are some interesting arguments to be played with if anyone wants to yank on that thread.

The second takeaway I got from this was the thought that if Neoreaction ever starts hazing newbies, we should make them perform this article by way of song and interpretative dance before an assembled audience of the Eldars and other important NRx-type folks.

Several weeks ago, I had some harsh words to say about the hit song “All About That Bass”. I wasn’t the only one. It turns out that a few other people felt the need to skewer the piece. In their cases, however, they used parody as the weapon.

If you prefer your parodies to be scathing attacks, stabbing like a knife at the soft spots and showing no mercy, click here.

If you prefer your parodies to be full of attractive women in tight outfits, click here.

If you like both, you’re my kind of guy.

SPQR

Hell hath no fury…

I had planned on putting out the next part of my Theory of Mind series, but there have been a few things brought to my attention that necessitate further research and synthesis. While I let all that simmer, I figured I would once again turn the lens of this blog towards pop culture. The value of art and culture as a teaching tool is significant, and so it pays off to keep an eye on what our culture is trying to teach us. Let’s dive in!

Hey look, beautiful people in the setting of classic southern aristocrats! What a great aesthetic! I’m sold! Sure, it’s a bit ridiculous at times, but I think we can suspend our disbelief long enough to allow for Taylor Swift to keep her horses and deer inside her mansion (with interesting implications depending on how we choose to interpret that symbolism).

As it turns out, this song is a treasure trove of important lessons. There is much to discuss here, but let’s start off by just looking at the lyrics.

Nice to meet you, where you been?
I could show you incredible things
Magic, madness, heaven, sin
Saw you there and I thought
Oh my God, look at that face
You look like my next mistake

Looks don’t matter. Looks matter. Looks don’t matter. Looks matter. Post-hoc rationalization or a perfectly human reaction to stunning good looks? Can we ever really know? Can the singer tell us? Does she even know herself well enough to answer?

Can any of us know ourselves well enough to be able to comprehend the machinations of our unconscious?

You can’t underestimate the effect a first impression has on how people perceive you. I chalk it up to 50% of the way they view you. Forever.

What impression do you give off?

Love’s a game, want to play?

And what a game it is, but beware of any woman who knows that it is a game. If they’ve figured that out, they probably know how to play it better than you. If this intimidates you, you’re normal.

If this excites you, then maybe you’ve got the balls to play this game right, but you’ll need more than balls alone. Balls without anything else are soft and easily crushed. It is only when attached to something dangerous that they count for anything.

New money, suit and tie
I can read you like a magazine
Ain’t it funny, rumors, lie
And I know you heard about me

Illusionism and divination. Two sides of the same coin. Absolutely instrumental in playing the social games that require intense theory of mind.

People who deal well with ideas spar with each other in the realm of the abstract (i.e. philosophical discussions). People who are good with people spar with each other in the realm of social engagement, sizing each other up and testing their social savvy, trying to see if they can find cracks in the facade or make the mask slip a little bit. Charisma, cunning, and dissimulation oft go hand-in-hand, and people who possess these traits are very good at figuring out who is on their level and who isn’t.

Most of the time, this is unconscious, automatic behavior. At higher levels though, a good deal of conscious effort is put into it, supplementing and guiding the instincts and behavioral patterns that are being relied upon.

So hey, let’s be friends
I’m dying to see how this one ends
Grab your passport and my hand
I can make the bad guys good for a weekend

You can’t change people, but that doesn’t stop us from trying now, does it?

So it’s gonna be forever
Or it’s gonna go down in flames

Either/or thinking. Very easy to fall into. Very dangerous if you do.

You can tell me when it’s over
If the high was worth the pain

No. You can’t. No matter how much time passes, no matter how many years go by, you can’t tell. You never figure out if it was worth it, and you realize that you’re afraid to make the call either way.

 Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane

First off, it definitely sounded like she was singing “Those lonely Starbucks lovers”, which led me to initially write this: “If some dude at Starbucks tells you that a chick is crazy, proceed from the assumption that you have no reason to doubt him.”

Having checked the official lyrics, I present them without comment.

‘Cause you know I love the players
And you love the game

Reality 101.

‘Cause we’re young and reckless
We’ll take this way too far

“We”? What’s this we? Sure, it takes two to tango, but in this situation, you really only need one person to drag things into dangerous territory. What happens next though, does rely on the actions of both people.

It’ll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar

Who says it has to be one or the other? These kinds of relationships are the kind of wild ride that becomes addicting because the highs are higher and the lows are lower. Women especially can get addicted to these cycles, but you’re a fool if you think it doesn’t happen to men as well…and more than you might think.

Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane
But I’ve got a blank space baby
And I’ll write your name.

A scary thought, but also a titillating one. This is exactly the sort of thing that Nietzsche was talking about when he said that to man, woman is both danger and play.

Every man needs a little bit of both from his woman (and vice versa), but the level of danger that will elicit the strongest emotional reaction is higher than either is willing to admit. Perhaps this is because they do not know this about themselves. Perhaps this is because they are unwilling to admit it to themselves…

Cherry lips, crystal skies
I could show you incredible things
Stolen kisses, pretty lies

Not exactly the foundation of the healthiest relationship, but definitely the foundation of a passionate, mad whirlwind of a relationship that will make you feel out-of-control emotions and leave you changed forever. In other words, a dangerous potion indeed.

Combine this with the tumultuous cycles of insanity depicted in the video and you have an insane maelstrom of every emotion humanly possible. The brain cannot help but get addicted to this kind of stimulation.

Add in a cycle of abuse to make the ride even more extreme, and you have a powerful emotional connection that most people will never have the strength to break.

When you muse on this, you realize the dark truth. People do not stay in tumultuous, abusive relationships despite being abused. They stay in them because they are tumultuous and abusive and nothing else can give them the kind of stimulation and satisfaction they’ve become wired to need.

You’re the king, baby, I’m your Queen
Find out what you want
Be that girl for a month

So soon into the relationship? Warning sign. It is easy to say you want a girl who will submit to you and act for your pleasure, but this is not the way you should want it to happen. Very, very bad things will occur if you let this be the case.

Wait the worst is yet to come, oh no
Screaming, crying, perfect storms
I can make all the tables turn

“…And will blame it on you. It’s your fault you put me in this state. How can you do this to me? What’s wrong with you? Look at what you’re doing to me!”

Hey look, there’s that abuse that is painful to hear at first, but becomes soothing and comforting if you don’t out of that relationship right then!

These situations are tricky because the angrier person is usually the one doing a better job of holding frame, leaving the less angry one in a situation that the overwhelming majority of people are incapable of handling. This is not very conducive to a successful extrication.

Rose gardens filled with thorns

Blatant symbolism with a dangerous message. Does true beauty necessarily have to come with pain? Yes? No? If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, even partially, and the dangerous pattern I described above is fairly accurate, well…

Careful you don’t trip down that rabbit-hole.

Keep you second guessing like
“Oh my God, who is she?”
I get drunk on jealousy

That rush of jealousy. It can have…unpredictable effects. What’s the old saying? The dose makes the poison.

But you’ll come back each time you leave
‘Cause darling, I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream

How easy it is to find yourself enjoying a nightmare. The rush of adrenaline…the relief when the tension dissipates…it’s the same mechanism that make people enjoy riding roller coasters or watching scary movies. How easy it is to take pleasure in it. How easy it is to get addicted…

So it’s gonna be forever
Or it’s gonna go down in flames
You can tell me when it’s over
If the high was worth the pain
Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane
‘Cause you know I love the players
And you love the game
‘Cause we’re young and we’re reckless
We’ll take this way too far
It’ll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar
Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane (Insane)
But I’ve got a blank space baby,
And I’ll write your name.

I think I’ve said all I need to about the chorus.

Boys only want love if it’s torture
Don’t say I didn’t, say I didn’t warn ya
Boys only want love if its torture
Don’t say I didn’t, say I didn’t warn ya

A male artist saying this about women could never get away with saying this, but truth finds a way to slip out. Particulars often mask hidden generalities.

It’s very easy to call this projection, but the truth is a bit more complicated than that. Just because it’s projection, doesn’t mean that it’s entirely wrong. Just because it’s projection, doesn’t mean it doesn’t cut both ways.

So it’s gonna be forever
Or it’s gonna go down in flames.
You can tell me when it’s over
If the high was worth the pain.
Got a long list of ex-lovers
they’ll tell you I’m insane.
‘Cause you know I love the players
And you love the game.
‘Cause we’re young and we’re reckless
We’ll take this way too far
It’ll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar
Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane
But I’ve got a blank space baby,
And I’ll write your name.

In recent days, the words of the Marquis de Sade have weighed heavily on mind: “The way to a woman’s heart is along the path of torment. I know none other as sure.” The “red-pill” guys think they know what that means. They have no idea how much they underestimate what de Sade meant by that.

On top of that, a lot of the neuroses and psychological quirks that manosphere and red-pill guys attribute to women apply in significant measure to men as well. Anyone who says otherwise is a fool lacking in either honesty or self-awareness…if not both.

Granted, it takes slightly different emotional triggers to elicit the same reactions, but the fundamental principles that underlie human psychology aren’t that different between men and women.

People tend to fool themselves into thinking silly things. It’s how we deal with the world. To assume that to be wise means inverting foolish beliefs is equally mad. People are rarely 100% wrong, and when they are, it is very easy to convince them of this. It is when they are part wrong and part right that the process becomes tricky.

Think of the aggressive, amazon-type women who think that only a “real man” can handle them and that people who avoid them do so because they are afraid. They’re not exactly wrong on the first part (though roughly 90% wrong on the last bit). It really does take a Frank Underwood to marry a Clarie Underwood and make it work. If a good, quality woman to raise your children is your only end, you are more likely than not going to be better served by staying away from that type. If your ends are slightly different, though, it’s not necessarily not a bad idea to get wrapped up with that type…especially if you can handle it.

The men who fantasize about such alpha women are actually governed by the same dynamic behind fantasies of banging a lesbian: the idea that your woman will submit to no man but you. Marrying a meek wife who is loyal and chaste is one way of ensuring that this happens. Taming a true amazon is another.

Make your bed and lie in it.

Perhaps this is the bit where I’m supposed to tell you to avoid ball-busters, crazies, and other kinds of “wrong” women. Perhaps this is the bet where I tell you to avoid toxic relationships with unstable people. That’s a good moral. It’s certainly what “Blank Space” is telling us to do.

That’s what I should tell you. That’s what I should say.

So why can’t I bring myself to say it?

AMOR ET MELLE ET FELLE EST FECUNDISSIMUS

Friday Night Fragments #3

If asked, most people will claim to desire peace:

Techno-commercialist: It does not benefit us to go to war. We gain far more from the current arrangement.
Ethno-nationalist: We simply wish to live in peace among our own kind. We do not care what other people do.
Religious-traditionalist: Peace is harmony is love. God did not make us to be bloodthirsty savages.
All: We desire only to be left alone in peace and live our lives the way we best see fit.

And yet, it is so easy to rile them up for war:

Techno-commercialist: We must eliminate this threat to our stability and prosperity.
Ethno-nationalist: The burden falls upon us to protect our race.
Religious-traditionalist: Deus Vult.
All: We will do what we must to protect ourselves against this threat to us that cannot be stopped any other way.

What shall we make of this?

Bryce Laliberte has been thinking about the destructive effects of public school on children.

I want this sound bite plastered on the doors of every school in this country.

This brought to my mind a memory from this summer when I was meeting up with Aimless Gromar. At some point I mentioned to him that I had gone through my entire K – 12 indoctination education process in the public school system, and he had half-jokingly asked how I had managed to get through it without ending up seriously messed-up.

Let me tell you all a story. In second grade, I was identified as one of the “gifted” children and sent to a special study group with other “gifted” children. We were given more difficult math problems to work on than the other students. The teacher in charge of this group had, for whatever reason, not worked out the answers to these problems beforehand, and so was concurrently attempting to solve them at the same time as her charges. This became an issue when I needed to check my answers, because it was discovered that I was solving the problems faster than the person who was supposed to be teaching the concepts to us.

Experiences like that do not set one up very well for a lifetime of respecting authority and following orders.

Perhaps because of numerous experiences like this one, I’ve always had a bit of an anti-authoritarian streak and a tendency to question the ideas most people want me to have. I credit this tendency — along with my auto-didactic impulses — as being key to my getting through public school without becoming a brain-dead zombie.

Side thought: If you wanted to find a living, breathing example of a philosophical zombie, a public school would be a good first place to look.

In a previous Friday Fragments, I asked which president was the best (as defined by neoreactionary terms). George Washington and Andrew Jackson seemed to be the most common answers (though there was some disagreement on that front). The general theme seemed to be that the earlier presidents were considered more aristocratic, and thus better, than the ones who came afterwards. Given this, I find it especially surprising that no one suggested Thomas Jefferson, who would be my pick for the top spot (edging out George Washington by virtue of the Louisiana Purchase).

Mark Yuray wonders if Neoreactionaries should speak and write in Latin, coming to the conclusion that you should speak the language of those whose ideals you wish to uphold. I wonder what the guy who ENDS HIS POSTS WITH LATIN QUOTES and goes by the name of LEGIONNAIRE thinks about this? Such a pity I can never decide which empire was the best: British or Roman.

For what it’s worth, however, I think the Ottoman Empire was the next-greatest after those two, but don’t expect to see blog posts written in Turkish any time soon.

Intuition is a beautiful thing, and I admit I rely on it more than a careful person should (but not nearly as much as I think would provide me with optimal benefit). Sometimes I get burned (usually when relying on it for trivia and other minute facts), but my biggest mistakes in life have been those when I didn’t follow my intuitions.

Some people have intuitions geared towards big picture ideas and unseen connections, but they can’t see all the steps that are needed to confirm these connections as valid. Some people have intuitions about the inner workings of things, but have difficulty seeing the big picture. As you can probably guess, I think this a manifestation of the verbal/mathematical split I discussed here.

Is progressivism an ideology, or is progressivism a vector?

The new video game Assassins Creed Unity recently found itself being blasted by some left-leaning Frenchies (original french here) for portraying the French Revolution as a chaotic and unstable time period and the revolutionaries as bloodthirsty savages driven by less-than-noble ideals. Quelle horreur!

Yes, the game does do that, which is a major point in its favor. The best part of this portrayal, however? The subtle way that the game paints Napoleon as not only supremely competent, but also dangerously ambitious. It is equal parts impressive and foreboding and is, all in all, a sublime characterization that deserves much credit and acclaim.

That said, the game does not include two of the most interesting characters of the time period: Joseph Fouché and Charles-Maurice Talleyrand, so it loses major points in my book for that.

Also of note: towards the end of the game, the main character has chased down Robespierre and is interrogating him for the location of an assassination target. Robespierre isn’t talking, so your female companion shoves a pistol in his face, blows his jaw off, and orders him to shut up and write down the location in one of the most gloriously satisfying acts of historical license I have ever seen. So there’s that.

If you’ve ever read The Gervais Principle, you’ll understand this next bit, though I’ll try to make it clear to those who haven’t perused that work. I had a realization the other day that the official branches of the US government are made up of losers and the clueless (this is so obvious in retrospect that I cannot believe I didn’t realize this sooner).

Now for the creeping horror: If the official branches are full of these types, then where are the sociopaths who always end up running the show? I’m not sure I can think of a stronger argument than this for the existence of a deep state.

Counter-argument: High-level politicians need to be sociopaths in order to attain their positions.

Counter-counter-argument: The sociopath-clueless-loser dynamic is based on relative differences. The real power players are going to be the sociopaths of the sociopaths (or, perhaps even more dangerously, the sociopaths of the sociopaths of the sociopaths).

Every woman wants you to hurt her, and if you don’t hurt her enough, she will never forgive you for it.

SALTUS IN DEMONSTRADO

A Theory of Theory of Mind: Part One

(Reader Beware: Highly-concentrated theorizing ahead. Not suitable for the literal-minded and those averse to highly-speculative ideas. Here be dragons.)

Many months ago, in the heart of Sodom, I met up with a rather aimless fellow for lunch and high-level conversation. One of the things we touched on briefly was how the people who are really good at rigorous, objective analysis tend to have poorly-developed theory of mind, and how this is especially true at the level of really high-level analysis.

Granted, of course, one could apply objective analysis to people and come up with some very good theorems. This is, after all, what the early pick-up artist community did (and what the game community continues to do). I’m loath to call this theory of mind, however. It is one thing to have abstract knowledge and another thing to have visceral understanding, and this is a case in which one can possess the former and not the latter.

Or, to put a new twist on an old thought experiment: Mary understands everything about human beings except human beings.

It would also be easy to chalk this up to the inability of very intelligent people to be able to comprehend the average mind, due to the gulf in cognitive capacities. I’m not satisfied by this answer though. There are a lot of very intelligent people who are able to perfectly comprehend other people. In fact, high intelligence seems to be very helpful in this regard.

It would be equally easy to postulate that underlying brain processes tend to steer someone towards one strength or another. This certainly makes sense, but it it only kicks the can down the road in regard to underlying explanation.

This is something I’ve been trying to figure out for a while now, and I think I’ve finally worked out an important piece of the puzzle.

As I’ve suggested before, I think theory of mind is connected in some way to verbal IQ. Furthermore, let’s also assume that differences in cognitive process styles become more pronounced as intelligence increases (one explanation for the observation I noted a few days ago if we assume that 130 is around the mark that such differences become noticeable).

What this would mean is that although general intelligence is correlated with both verbal and mathematical intelligence, greater intelligence also leaves more room for a difference in the relative levels of each (I suspect that the correlation between different types of intelligence breaks down as people become more intelligent, though I wish I could find some hard data that deals with this point).

This would indicate the verbal IQ results from a mind wired for a certain type of processing, with mathematical IQ arising from a different type of mind. This difference can only be observed at the far end of the spectrum as a result of the differences in brain structure and activity needed to produce a high-level intellect.

Plausible? I suppose the key point here is the degree to which a brain begins to specialize as it becomes more intelligent (whether intelligence causes specialization or specialization causes intelligence is trivial to what I am trying to propose here, though it does bring up interesting avenues of research for people who study intelligence). Let us assume I am generally on the ball here, as the alternative is to assume I am off my rocker and end this post here.

It seems that the underlying mechanism behind verbal IQ is that of synthesizing and simulating new possibilities, while mathematical IQ is that of logical deduction and drawing valid inferences from prior knowledge. I’ll be one of the last people to ever deny that you can be good at both, but I will posit that almost everybody’s cognitive processing is going to be dominated by one process or the other.

Second (and this is another crazy intuition here), verbal IQ is more strongly connected to associative horizon than mathematical IQ is. Why would this be important? Well, let’s see what happens in a mind lacking associative horizon:

If associative horizon is depressed, one might still be a good bookkeeper, clerk, banker, translator, corrector, editor, lawyer, diplomat, politician, public servant, or scholar in the “humanities”. In fact one might be good at any one of a whole lot of things more, but show a lack of originality and humour…

 

They feel less attracted to the natural sciences (although they may be intelligent enough for those) because of the strictly empirical nature of those disciplines, which requires one to change one’s point of view or paradigm whenever the empirical data contradict one’s expectation. And persons with narrow associative horizons are not able to change paradigms as they are rigid. They prefer the “alpha” sciences, which traditionally employ an a priori paradigm or model that is imposed upon reality and not adapted empirically. Their high intelligence enables them to argue or debate endlessly in apparently logical constructions of infinite complexity, while their narrow associative horizon keeps them from seeing the larger picture, the road ahead, and therefore keeps them from being goal-directed, so that their apparent logic does not bring them any closer to truth or righteousness in the end…

 

If associative horizon is depressed, this too may make a “stupid” impression. For example, not grasping subtle humour or irony, not recognizing brilliant new ideas, not getting “the bigger picture”; those are all behaviours that make someone appear “stupid” despite being of higher intelligence.

  –Paul Cooijmans

There’s a lot of important information there, but here’s the most relevant passage:

Persons with narrow associative horizons are not able to change paradigms as they are rigid. They prefer the “alpha” sciences, which traditionally employ an a priori paradigm or model that is imposed upon reality and not adapted empirically. Their high intelligence enables them to argue or debate endlessly in apparently logical constructions of infinite complexity…their apparent logic does not bring them any closer to truth or righteousness in the end.

Rigid, objective models that are imposed upon reality. Does that sound like the sort of thing a verbally-inclined or a mathematically-inclined person would gravitate towards?

This is my theory: people who tend towards mathematics-style processing have terrible theory of mind because they are constantly reaching conclusions about what people should do and how people should objectively behave. These are, of course, conclusions that in no way describe what people actually do. Hence, poor theory of mind among mathematical IQ-dominant types.

(Side note: I shared a simplified version of this idea with some of my engineer friends. They were all in agreement that people are stupid and do stupid things that they shouldn’t do.)

Of course, this is a fairly self-evident proposition, as anyone who has spent time around such people knows (there is a reason we have the stereotype of the socially awkward but intellectually-gifted nerd). The bit that took some effort to dig up was the underlying mechanism by which a mathematical IQ-dominant brain will tend to have poor theory of mind.

What this doesn’t tell us is why a high verbal IQ might be associated with good theory of mind. That said, it does leave us some dots to connect. Verbal IQ is possibly linked with associative horizon. A lack of associative horizon leaves one unable to shift paradigms in the face of empirical evidence, and leaves one to prefer objective, internally-consistent models that disregard empirical evidence to the contrary. Ample associative horizon will allow one to see indirect connections and update their mental schemas in light of new evidence. People don’t make sense if you start with a priori notions, but you can build frameworks that make sense in light of new evidence. Ergo, if I am generally correct in my assertions, verbal IQ is linked to theory of mind by way of associative horizon.

But is there possibly a direct connection between theory of mind and verbal IQ? Well, there is a reason that this is only Part One.

ADAEQUATIO INTELLECTUS NOSTRI CUM RE

Friday Night Fragments

Given how my thoughts continue to be disjointed and chaotic in recent weeks, it seems only fitting that this post is going to have much the same structure as my last one (for what it’s worth, I’m tossing around the idea of making this a regular thing). Let’s hop in!

I can’t say that I’m the first person to have noticed this, but it has become increasingly clear to me that something fundamentally changes in a person around the 130 I.Q. mark. People below this point generally all process things the same way, just with some people better at it than others. Past 130, the underlying cognitive process seem to change. People being to think about things using process that just don’t exist in the minds of most.

Furthermore, there is a diversity in the way intelligent people process things that does not exist among the mere average. Some are able to make analogies that go above the heads of other people. Some are able to visualize the world and think in symbols instead of words. Some have what can only be described as an insanely powerful intuition, with brilliant answers to problems popping into their heads without conscious thought.

Two people around the 120 mark will generally process things the same way. Two people around the 140 mark might have very different processing styles. Two people around the 160 mark might as well be different species, not just compared to the average 98-IQ rube, but (depending on processing styles) also possibly to each other.

If I recall correctly, Kant once postulated that a perfectly rational agent would voluntarily subject itself to a logical morality (though this might have been someone else…I can’t say I’m all that brushed up on my Kant). I was thinking to myself the other day that the debate over whether God is subject to the laws of nature takes on a very different character if one postulates that God created the laws of logic and the universe and then subjected itself to them.

There are three parts to the great trifecta of mass indoctrination: education, news, and entertainment. The greater prevalence of transsexual characters and actors in the third is one of the opening salvos of World War T.

Take for instance, the show Sons of Anarchy, which has now has entangled one of its main characters in a relationship with a male-to-female transsexual. Surely this is capitulation to the progressive imperative at work?

On the other hand, this is a relationship between a transsexual hooker and a sexually-depraved biker who in previous seasons was implied to be a necrophiliac and who has expressed joy at the thought of doing things such as shoving a flute up a man’s ass when torturing him for information. Both characters have been depicted as sexually deviant (bordering on deranged). They freely admit that their relationship is partly a means of signalling just how far beyond the pale they both are. This subplot might be a means of signalling progressivism, but it’s also a natural development for both of these self-styled “freaks”.

Sons of Anarchy isn’t exactly a progressive show. If anything, it’s anarcho-fascist. It would not be a stretch to think of this show as the narrative version of The Way of Men. This is a show about violent outlaw bikers, after all (one that manages to pull off a level of graphic violence that frequently surpasses anything you would see on HBO).

Side note: Funny how an anti-progressive show like Sons of Anarchy manages to have some of the strongest female characters on TV. It’s almost as if progressivism undermines the ability to create complex, interesting female characters.

It’s a pity that we live in a day and age in which the personal is political, because this is a storyline that is interesting and worthwhile and makes sense for both characters, and now it’s been tainted with the lingering feeling at the back of the mind that this is a bone that had to be thrown to the progressive inquisition.

Do social justice warriors make such a big deal about cultural conditioning and social constructs because they tend to be more impressionable and less capable of discerning good ideas from bad? If this were the case, they would need the heavy hand of an intellect with more agency and cognitive firepower to tell them which ideas are good and bad.

Social Justice Warriors. The natural slaves?

Neoreactionary karaoke.

The trick to being a proficient writer is to write a lot. The trick to writing anything interesting is the a result of having had interesting experiences. The trick to being a writer that can transcend time seems to be to have a remarkable associative horizon. If this is lacking, drugs and altered states of conscious (anything from tiredness to insanity) can serve as a crutch. They can’t match the same heights, but they still provide a boon to the normal, unaltered mind.

A conversation with a radical progressive about women:

“I’m very attracted to Asian women.”

“That’s pretty creepy, dudebro. Better rethink your preferences.”

“I find Latina women to be very attractive.”

“Sounds like you’ve internalized socially constructed stereotypes of Latinas as sensual and hyper-sexual. I’m not even going to go into how wrong that is.”

“There’s something about black women I find very appealing.”

“Congratulations, you’ve just turned them into exotic sex objects. Way to treat them as human beings, asshole.”

“I like white women.”

“Racist.”

“I like women”

“Stop objectifying them.”

“I don’t like women”

“Misogynist.”

Neo-paganism serves as anti-modern signalling far more than any sort of framework for religious guidance, but that’s the point. You’ll notice that political moderates and people who are generally mainstream don’t claim to hold such beliefs. Pagans are generally divided between the (far-larger) left-wing, hippie camp and the reactionary/identitarian right-wing brigade.

I’m not opposed to the idea of promoting right-wing paganism as a way of driving people to reaction, but any broad revival of paganism is going to require an incredibly potent necromancy. I won’t profess to any skill in this field of magic, but it strikes me that this is an instance in which pagans could learn from Christians.

There is a long history in the Christian tradition of claiming that saints and other important religious figures have appeared to people to give them guidance and advice. If the pagans want to start taking ground in this new culture war, they might want to try this approach (i.e. “I follow *Odin/Athena/Horus/insert deity* here because *he/she/it* appeared to me and gave me guidance and strength when I needed it most.”)

Feminists make a big deal about violence against women (probably because it secretly turns them on, but that is another discussion entirely). They also claim to stand for equality. Women are subject to male violence at far lower rates than men. Sounds pretty unequal to me.

Promote equality. Slap a feminist today!

SPQR

Dark Linkage and Fractured Thoughts

The recent election in the United States shows that the bifurcation of American politics is becoming more and more pronounced (this is, of course, a symptom of the boiling over of the culture war). Hostilities continue to escalate, and even the New York Times noticed recently that political discrimination has become far more pronounced than even that great progressive boogeyman: racism.

Commenters across the Reacto-sphere have penned various takes, including the expected invectives against participating in the act of voting (though notably, TRS has a different take). Of particular note is Nick Land, who takes a quick moment to display the kind of evil cunning that American politics is sorely lacking.

Some have claimed that what we are seeing is not a culture war, but a race war, and that soon it will be Whites (and maybe Asians) versus everyone else. This is incorrect. The central conflict is between Whites. Blacks? Hispanics? Asians? Jews? Pawns in the Great White Civil War.

Some forms of governance are more scalable than others. Democracy, for example, is not nearly so dysfunctional in a group of 50 people than it is in a country of 50 million. In fact, the dysfunction per capita is also markedly lower. Similarly, fascism works very well in small groups, though fascist governments on the level of nation-states have a poor track record of longevity.

The degree to which a type of government can be scaled would seem to suggest a certain type of internal efficiency, which would seem to reflect well on its suitability (as well as ease of use). However, unless one is planing on taking a population of 1,000 to a nation-state on the order of 10 million, there is no first-order reason why this should be a factor of any relevance whatsoever. This is, I think, a clear example of the importance of understanding first- and second-order consequences (and possibly third-, fourth-, fifth-…etc).

The cosmopolitan/nativist dichotomy in Neoreaction is no doubt related to (if not just another way of expressing) the brahmin/vaisya dynamic that I explored here. I believe a balance between the two groups to be beneficial. Some people will always be drawn to the idea of travel and foreign adventures. Not everyone is wired to stay within the borders of the motherland and uphold the time-honored traditions of family and culture. That sort of activity is absolutely necessary to the survival of a nation (which is why most people should do it), but assuming that everyone will do it is another way of making human nature a bug, not a feature, of your system.

A nation that wants to thrive will leverage all of its assets. The cosmopolitans will always be with you. Find a way to channel their preferences in such a fashion that benefits you without weakening your culture.

That’s what a smart society would do. That’s what a wise sovereign would promote.

Good fences may make good neighbors, after all, but that’s no reason not to trade gifts on Christmas.

On Twitter this week, new Twitter follower Thorgeir Lawspeaker declared to me his distaste for how certain historical figures are retroactively being declared gay.

There are grounds to contest that some of the figures he named did, in fact, bounce around a bit on the Kinsey Scale (Turing, for instance, stated himself that he was in a sexual relationship with another man when questioned by British police). Besides, worrying about which historical figures are being retroactively being declared “gay” is quibbling over trivialities. Someone who lived 800 years ago might have had a taste for men. So what?

We could, of course, take the position that nobody was gay until Oscar Wilde burst onto the scene, but come now, that would be ridiculous. There are Neoreactionaries who aren’t straight. It would take someone in massive denial to suggest that all notable historical figures were 100% heterosexual.

Nick Land has been an even more fertile source of unique ideas for me than usual this week. Through him I came across this gem asking if we need another East India Company. I’m not sure I want the US government doing any such thing, though I wonder what China would do if someone suggested the idea to them…

Feeling subversive, I suggested to a female friend with a scholarly interest in international development that she could blow the entire field wide open if she examined the EIC from the lens of being the most effective international development organization in history. After a little convincing (her incredulity could have been measured on the Richter Scale), she said she’d be willing to look into the idea.

She’s probably still trying to figure out if I’m some kind of genius or if I’m just insane. Despite my best efforts though, I’m afraid I fall just a bit short on both those fronts. I’ve been wondering lately if a large enough dose of LSD would be enough to push me over the edge into either of those categories (I’m really not picky about which one I end up with, though both would be ideal). If any of my readers have ever tried it, let me know how it went. If anyone feels the need to convince me that this is a really, really bad idea, be sure to speak up.

Who would Neoreactionaries label as the best president? Yes, yes, I know that we all have signalling to uphold and the correct answer is “none of them”. Spare me. Stop playing that game and instead play this one. Which of the 44 men who have held the office of US president did the best job? Don’t be an ass and say Zachary Taylor for dying before he could do anything.

Speaking of labels, let’s talk about labels. Labels can apply even if we don’t want them to, or even if we don’t know that certain labels apply to us. This indicates that identity (being as it is a set of labels that can be conferred) does not rest solely on personal perception. The accuracy of a label derives not from an internal sense of satisfaction, but from a correspondence to the external world.

Social Justice Warriors. The Socratic Method. Labels as contingent on an external world. Connect the dots for fun and games.

The Cathedral as we might normally understand it is switching its loyalties. Where it once supported Israel wholeheartedly, it has now begun to extend its sympathies to Palestine. The proper progressive position is now to uphold the cause of the pooroppressedpalestinianpeoples. However, the US government still stands firm behind Israel. Given that the official government is both the public front and the armed wing of the Cathedral, this is a most interesting tension.

An easy explanation for this dynamic is that the full Cathedral feedback loop hasn’t kicked in yet (in 30 years, the US government might very well be throwing Israel to the dogs for the sake of the Palestinians). Another is that concentrated Jewish influence is enough to counter Cathedral doctrine. The farfetched and highly unlikely explanation is that this signals an internal division in the Cathedral that will be exacerbated as the coming century of fragmentation and disintegration warms up.

One can only hope.

SPQR

The Mask behind the Man…

What is Halloween? It’s a question we don’t normally ask ourselves. I could tell you about my Halloween, I suppose. I spent my Halloween consoling a drunk and heartbroken friend while wearing an SNL-inspired “dick in a box” outfit. Well, to be honest, not all of my Halloween. Not even most of it. Just enough of it to be memorable.

While soaking in his agony, he confided in me that last year he’d been secretly dating a certain girl whom we’d both known. This was interesting news to me, as this was a girl I’d been casually involved with at that time. It seems that he’d been the main man while I’d been the excitement on the side.

He didn’t know about me. I hadn’t known about him. I decided not to enlighten him. Some secrets need to be kept.

Overall, it was a less degenerate Halloween than I’d been hoping for, but it was still pretty weird. I’d give it a B+ overall.

I can tell you about Halloween in general. I can tell you it was a pagan holiday that was co-opted and re-purposed for Christian culture. I can tell you that much of the influence probably comes from ancient Celtic festivals. But that too seems insufficient…

So what of the way we act on Halloween? What of the way we cede responsibility to the masks we wear and let ourselves do things we wouldn’t otherwise have done? Therein seems to lie the real treasure of Halloween…

What is Halloween? Halloween, fundamentally, is a ritual. It is an excuse to don a mask and loosen some of the tensions and attitudes that we need to uphold the rest of the year. It is a way to cede responsibility, to let out some of the madness within, and then go back to our daily lives.

A good Halloween serves much the same purpose as a Dionysian rite, undergoing ritual madness in order to uphold sanity the rest of the year. It is that moment of weakness that makes one’s strength stronger.

In this way, it can be hypothesized that annual rituals like “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” might serve as support for traditional patriarchy and gender roles. Remember, it is not just in college towns that the culture of this cult classic proliferates, but also in blue-collar, small towns across the United States. Does breaking out the fishnets and garters on this one day of the year cement conformity to gender roles the other 364? Given the Dionysian nature of the occurrence, it seems we shouldn’t rule this hypothesis out completely.

In a life devoid of ritual, it is little wonder that we accord Halloween such a place in our culture. Halloween antics (or the memory thereof) suggest a kind of ritual that is all too lacking in this day and age.

In an age devoid of magic, such rituals hint at a type of mystic sorcery that normally we can only conjure up in our imaginations. They are by their nature infused with magic, perhaps even more so than we realize. It is through such magic that communities can come together, winnowing away destructive urges and preparing ourselves for the times ahead.

Halloween is a spiritual successor to the Dionysian rites of old. All the debauchery and degeneracy is channeled for the greater moral good of the community. In this way, Halloween is not only the most paramount of customs, it it arguably the most Neoreactionary of all holidays.

 

NULLUM MAGNUM INGENIUM SINE MIXTURA DEMENTIAE FUIT