I've been having some right hand, arthritis related, problems lately. Last night, having overdone mousework during the day (I'm trying to integrate more keyboard shortcuts) I decided to try reading some Christopher Lasch--whom many praise. I tried The Culture Of Narcissism: American Life In An Age Of Diminishing Expectations (1973), but found it turgid. So I picked up The Revolt Of The Elites And The Betrayal Of Democracy (1994). That, so far, is much more to my taste and has the advantage--again, so far--of being far more connected to our current situation. I was struck by this passage in the first chapter which, in a partial way, plays into the themes we explored a bit yesterday (The Plight of Privileged Private Education):
Control has become [the Elite's] obsession. In their drive to insulate themselves from risk and contingency--against the unpredictable hazards that afflict human life--the thinking classes have seceded not just from the common world around them but from reality itself.
The culture wars that have convulsed America since the sixties are best understood as a form of class warfare, in which an enlightened elite (as it thinks of itself) seeks not so much to impose its values on the majority (a majority perceived as incorrigibly racist, sexist, provincial, and xenophobic), much less to persuade the majority by means of rational public debate, as to create parallel or "alternative" institutions in which it will no longer be necessary to confront the unenlightened at all. (20-21)
Lasch speaks, even two and a half decades ago, of a growing 'populist' sentiment in America. He describes the Elite's obsession to control not only their own lives but the lives of their children as well--to guarantee their children's place within a type of hereditary or, at the least, ideological elite. That certainly resonates with Bari Weiss's description of the privileged parents, who will tolerate or remain silent about almost anything in order to ensure their own and their children's continuing elite status. Of course the children are insulated from Deplorable America by attending the right Left schools, as the parents are by living in Holmby Hills. Above all, however, these are class markers, and these parents are engaged in a gentrified form of class warfare.
Now, it's true that we're seeing far more aggressive efforts on the part of the Left to coerce the majority. Note that well. The Left is not engaged in what Lasch calls "rational public debate." In fact, "rational public debate"--how surprised would Lasch really be at this development?--is now viewed as an instrument of White Supremacy by the people who run elite schools and most of our public life. They are interested in conditioning, control, coercion--they feel that they have an ascendancy fueled by social media. But at bottom this is still mostly a defensive effort at insulation from the real world, as Lasch says.
‘If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?’ReplyDelete
Sounds like Blue Anon did not read Shakespeare.
I would watch what Trump is doing. There is an Overton window here, and a huge opportunity that is a perfect fit with Trumps base to mobilize his base.
Yes, good insights by Lasch so far as they go but badly off as to the Oligarchy receding into their own, separate world. As you observe, the upper crust Left has always sought to impose their views on the great, unwashed proletariat (the same ones that they righteously claim to represent when it suits their criminal enterprise). Go back to Woodrow Wilson, Margaret Sanger, and their ilk in the early 20th century.ReplyDelete
For whatever reason, there is always a class of people who delude themselves into believing that they deserve to rule over others without consent or restrictions. Americans seem so sunk in luxury and easy living that it will take a very nasty collapse to shake us out of that cocoon. If then. If the CCP is any guide, they will give us just enough material comfort and unmistakable lessons in repression to keep us down.
In a way Narcissism is an apt analog. We normies or deplorables or Trumpistas or conservatives or whatever we would like to call ourselves keep waiting for the Left to "snap out of it". But just for fun take a look at this list of 12 things Narcissists hate and substitute our ascendant leftist elites for the Narcissist and see if you aren't persuaded just a tiny bit that the only solution is breaking up with them. https://kimsaeed.com/2020/08/12/how-to-make-a-narcissist-miserable-12-things-they-hate/ReplyDelete
The elites are on both sides, but the ideological left have gained control of the culture war. Trump was instrumental in opening many of our eyes and providing a populist alternative. It seems inevitable that there will be a wider public reaction against these excesses of the left, but then they use lawfare to consolidate their power and election reform (not to mention fraud) and immigration to overwhelm our electoral system. They have mass media and the education system. What will it take for the left to realize that their elites are working against their interests?ReplyDelete
“The elites are on both sides”
Yes, but the right elite, besides being fewer in number, are very similar to the right deplorables, mainly just wanting to be left alone. The left elite are like the rest of the left, wanting to impose their beliefs, opinions, prejudices, and sins on the rest of us. That gives the left an awesome force multiplier. It is this fanatical need to control that gives the left their reason for being, and that gives them the ability to plan and execute over long time frames, which gives them the ability to overwhelm and destroy institutions. Kind of like termites, only more lethal.
I agree about Trump, but cannot seem to get my arms around the reasons for so many accepting whatever the left is passing around at any given time. It just doesn't make sense, to me.
Personally, I don't think the left is capable of realizing their elites are working against their interests. Like every other totalitarian movement, none of the true believers can ever admit they're wrong.
Get a large trackball. I use the Elekom "HUGE" trackball. No weird hand-muscle cramping now.ReplyDelete
Tx. I'll check that out.Delete
Agreed on a large trackball.Delete
Also, consider Glucosamine Sulphate. I have early signs of arthritis in my hands (confirmed by X-ray), started taking 1 500mg pill a day for the past year. It seems to help.
I think I've heard of that. I'll check that out, too. Tx.Delete
My DIL swears by Aspercreme. No nasty smell and it does work.Delete
I'll keep it in mind. What happened is I developed a ganglion cyst near my wrist/thumb. Went to a hand doc who had done carpal tunnel procedure years ago (broken wrist) and he told, btw, you've got plenty of arthritis. But I don't have arthritic pain. The cyst is impinging on tendons or such like so I'm using a brace at night to try to reduce it, with some success. However, reducing other inflammation via keyboard shortcuts, GS, and trackball might be a very good idea. I've done some of that in the past but got lazy. Tx.Delete
I would recommend a couple of shorter, current, very to-the-point reads by Victor Davis Hanson and Kurt Schlichter, respectively:ReplyDelete
Trying to read up on the psychology of what is going on is rather like asking the elephant why he is standing on your foot instead of telling him to get off...
I read some of that this morning. What's going on is all so over the limit that I don't even go there. I figure sooner rather than later they'll have to pull the plug on him. The question is: Will Americans feel duped? I think many will.Delete
I don't think so. We are dealing with people's deep seated assumptions and they have TDS in the worst way. They have a sense of what a "well mannered" society should look like. Now if the price of gas goes to $8, wars all over the Middle East with US troops deployed, blue cities burning and the stock market crashed 50%...then they might want to examine their assumptions.Delete
It reminds me of a scene in DR ZHIVAGO where the workers were marching and the Cossacks came on horses to break it up. The scene was played with Omar Sharif face. Very impactful. Meanwhile the party went on inside. The Biden voters are inside enjoying the party unless they are Victor Komarovsky (Rod Steiger) who are the Mark Elias, Ben Rhodes of this period.
Reality has to hit them in the face so hard they can no longer deny it.
When I get stressed my wrists act up, when I’m keyboarding all day.ReplyDelete
What has helped me:
- Microsoft ergonomic keyboard
- wrist braces at night
- wrist exercises
- setting keyboard at correct height
- good chair at right height with good support
- braces when typing
Braces I have not had to go for a while. Perhaps better stress management?
For me I think the tension mostly comes from the mouse.Delete
Recommend trying a vertical mouse and moving the mouse to a place where your forearm is resting on a surface.Delete
Sounds like a great blog post!ReplyDelete
> What's going on is all so over the limit that I don't even go there.
Meanwhile seldom heard of investigative reporter Debra Heine keeps plugging away. Few of us probably recognize her name. This is something I haven’t read anywhere else:ReplyDelete
Newly Revealed Emails Show Green Bay Officials Gave Keys to 2020 Election to N.Y. Dem Operative
The Wisconsin House of Representatives on Wednesday held a hearing to review election irregularities after newly revealed documents obtained by Wisconsin Spotlight revealed that Democrat activists, funded by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, were able to infiltrate the 2020 presidential election in Wisconsin’s five largest cities. In Green Bay, a Democrat activist was actually given keys to the room where absentee ballots were stored before the 2020 presidential election. The city received a total of $1.6 million in grant funding from the Zuckerberg-funded Center for Tech and Civic Life, according to Wisconsin Spotlight. A Democrat operative from New York named Michael Spitzer-Rubenstein became a “grant mentor.”
He became Green Bay’s "de facto election chief”… Many more details here:
Yes, I saw that yesterday. The story had actually been out for a few days. Similar thing was discussed shortly after the election re Kenosha, Milwaukee, and Madison. The Zuckerberg money given to cities was totally illegal.Delete
Mark, sorry about your hand, but I can so NOT wait for your post on this Georgetown law professor getting fired today...I can tell you when your firing is at the top of the Daily Mail and you've pushed little Miss Markle below the fold, you have accomplished something of note!ReplyDelete
Get well, get well soon, we want you to get well (h/t to Seinfeld)
Heh, I read about that this afternoon.Delete
Not sure what to say ... Never had an elite education... inner big city public education for my first 14, suburb public for rest, state u afterwards.ReplyDelete
I worked my way through state u (USNR and low paying jobs as dishwasher, convenience store clerk, etc) and it paid for itself with my first job.
A fellow high schooler went to Stanford, USN officer, and then Microsoft. He is retired.
Him and I converse regularly. We are more alike than not by a wide margin. Granted, he was not elite prior to university, but he was studious in school while all I cared about was my girlfriend and football.
To this day over 30 years graduating high school, I can tell you all the “keys” for all the offenses we faced as a linebacker. I can still remember how the d line should be and recognize potential pass/run threats. Chuckle. My passion did not match up to my body.
Point is, him and I went different paths and he could have went “elite” because he was, but he is just like me in how this world has flipped.
Oh, that girlfriend became my wife.
The elite, due to their power and money, do not realize that the status is mostly ephemeral, but they are trying hard to make it permanent.
To show you how different things were--and to date myself totally--when I was in law school I lived at home but earned enough to pay for tuition and books working part time $3.50/hr. jobs.Delete
My first quarter tuition at Ohio State was $200 in 1972. Like most of us we could pay our way through school. No spring break, no overseas sojourns just education.Delete
But with the spigot open with student loans and Federal regulation the overhead bloat grew and grew and grew. My daughter's final tuition bill was $12K.
The easy way to fix this is to have the Federal Government pay the tuition for the student and it be the direct cost of instruction + 20% overhead fee. The balance of costs will have to be paid from the schools endowment. You will see costs slashed and a whole of new instructors in a hurry. The student still pays the loan off but it will be a lesser amount and not so crippling. Additionally if the student still hasn't paid off his loan by ten years the school get the pay the remainder from it's endowment. You will see a lot less Gender and Race studies in a hurry.
Oops meant till I was 14 in the inner city ... Dallas.Delete
I read The Revolt of the Elites last month and came away feeling that Lasch would be despairing for democracy's prospects. The common school, common culture, and common morality have all disappeared along with common sense. Our elites have lost all connection to the roots of western civilization. Attempting to follow the purposefully arcane 'discourses' of academia nowadays reminds me of the Orwell quote that, "There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them."ReplyDelete
Good luck with your paw. When I quit trading 3-4 hours per day two years ago, my issues with my mouse hand subsided pretty quickly. We would all miss your work, but maybe you needs some time away from the fray?
Re Lasch, I saw that as one of his main themes re narcissism--cutting oneself off from the past. A society that does that loses purpose.Delete
Funny - I read it too last month. Basically your summary is dead on. It all starts with the loss of faith in one God that is external to us. If you have no belief in hell then whatever you do now that pleases you is okay.Delete
Fear of Eternal Damnation kept a lot of people on a path of discipline including the elites. You may argue it was observed in the breach but it was observed. And people expected more from you.
Has anyone every watched to British documentary The Century of the Self about Edward Bernays' work in propaganda using his uncle's (Freud) work as a basis for mass population persuasion?ReplyDelete
Being mostly about retail and marketing it worth checking out where applied marketing meets with political division.
Congrats if you can make it though the third segment but the first two are a shortcut wake-up call to the ego.