anubis2814

Religion, Politics, Science, Skepticism

Hip-hop is Truly the Music of African Slavery and Disenfranchisement but I May Never be Able to Enjoy It, and That’s the Point.

Growing up in southern indiana, during the 80’s we began hearing about these weird things black people did that they somehow classified as music and dancing   We knew of them as rap and breakdancing.  We openly laughed and mocked the idea of this.  This wasn’t music, that wasn’t dancing.  This was replacing music with loud noise and talking.  As we progressed into the 90’s our understanding of it became a little more clear, but we still don’t like it nor view it as music, though we did hear i invade some of our music and movies.

Even to this day, I do not enjoy most hip-hop, and there is a reason for that.  It is actually a very good and lucky reason that I don’t enjoy it.  I have privilege.

What I didn’t realize was happening at the time I first heard snippets of hip-hop was that for the decades before my birth, neighborhoods in the Bronx became filled with African americans from the great migration from the south for good paying jobs at the time such as slaughter houses and meat packing plants, along with Afro-caribbean, and Latino populations, majority of the slave descendants.   As refrigeration and logistics picked up, many of the good city jobs were decimated as jobs moved to other areas where land was much cheaper, and many didn’t have the money to move away.   This was completely the opposite of what is happening now where all the good jobs are moving to the city due to better educated people and infrastructure for tech and manufacturing causing massive gentrification, while rural regions are becoming a new easily ignored ghetto.

The sonic environment of the times in the bronx prepped the hop-hop scene.  Afro-caribbean peoples brought their drums with them which they were able to keep from Africa, while they were banned for American slaves.  Bongo and other drum playing happened on the roofs of of the Bronx, the heavy beat was normalized in their minds and many african americans embraced it as a lost heritage.  Stereo equipment was very important to families there, and people with the loudest and best sound equipment brought them out for street and block parties, playing the music all across the spectrum, from jazz, Big band, blues, to latin music.  Every one of them merged in the minds of the kids.   Then in the late 60’s, money for the bronx essentially died as factory after factory shut down and moved away.  They were black neighborhoods so the average person in the US didn’t care.

Insanely rapidly, The bronx experienced what rural regions have experience over the past few decades, all the good jobs were gone.  The bronx cut funding to police, street lights and art and music in schools.  

Before black kids would learn to make music, now they had no means.  They worked on art, now it wasn’t available. Feeling hopeless and broke they did what many rural white people have now done namely, drugs and crime.  Gang warfare became rampant   The Bronx essentially became a war zone with no cops available.  The soundscape was loud, grating, violent and chaotic.  All the elements so many dislike about hip-hop.

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Graffiti became the new creative outlet. and cops did nothing to stop it.    DJ Kool Herc discovered at a party that if he reworked and sampled music clips over a break beat in a creative way he could make some music the kids loved at the parties he would DJ.   Hip-hop was born and DJing became a self-taught stand in that used to be fill by music class and music theory.  It was necessity being the mother of invention.

Afrika Bambaataa began using the same technique and would employ street poets to come in and talk over the hip-hop music he would play which became rap.  Beat boxing became an artform all its own as well.   He created a street organization called Universal Zulu Nation, centered around hip hop, as a means to draw teenagers out of gang life, drugs and violence.

From there it spread all over the bronx, it was raw and it was angry and at times nihilist in how bad they had been abandoned, ignored and forgotten.  They would hold street parties and have the power of street lights, that had this been a functioning area would have been shut down immediately.  As underfunded as the cops were, even though they got complaint after complaint by older residents who hated the sound, the cops did not interfere so long as it wasn’t violent because at least if these parties were going on they could keep track of these kids and they were a lot safer than gang brawls.    Hip-hop spread out of the bronx due to the proximity to the train lines that had easy access to wealthier cities.  

In fact it was because of hip-hop that the Hoes Avenue Peace Treaty was even possible and brought all the gangs together, ending much of the gang violence almost overnight.         

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Since that point, many places worldwide in similar poverty have embraced the hip-hop culture, as they have a similar socin experience and upbringing, and they know that it comes from the Bronx.

I always felt like maybe I was a bit racist for not enjoying hip-hop.  I was relieved with the lecture below to know that I am not, I am just privileged and lucky to not have experienced a sonic landscape and en experience that hip-hop evolved from.  Hip-hop is meant to be loud, grating, in your face, abandoned, hopeless and sometimes nihilistic, It is a cry for help and an attempt to establish some form of self esteem.  It a replacement to other creative outlets stolen, and a return of an instrument to to a group it was stolen from.  Just as there are many other cultures music I can’t really enjoy such as throat singing,  Koranic chants, polka and many other cultures because I wasn’t raised in their aesthetics, I can still appreciate them, just like I appreciate Bjork even though I couldn’t enjoy a lot of her music without a lot acid.  

Hip-hop is truly the collective music of former slaves, and will continue to be enjoyed by by their descendants and others as their heritage and legacy for many generations after this version of racism ends assuming, it truly ever does.

 

.https://www.c-span.org/video/?425793-1/hip-hop-began-bronx

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/new-graphic-novel-details-how-nyc-gangs-treaty-formed-hip-hop-20150701

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I am Thinking about Being More Careful with the Term “Racist”

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Now that I have whittled down many of the trolls that were clogging my feed as opposed to people with genuine differences of opinion or misunderstanding, and my life had a lot less stress, I’m beginning to once again see patterns in miscommunication and confusion people are having.  An example of this is using the term racism.  Any time an issue involving race including microaggressions pop up, we label it as racist.  

The thing is we get people mad at us and reply angrily for being called racist, and the funny thing is, both of us are right, but it depends on the bubble we are in.  One of the things that bubble cults do is have a set of jargon that makes it harder to communicate with people outside of that bubble.  

SJWs are not a bubble cult, they are more like ivory tower academia and if they get too deep into nuance and jargon it can make them completely unable to communicate with the outside world.   Academic jargon is incredibly useful in academia it is the best way to get on the same page and analyze deep concepts.  Bu when you cross the academic/colloquial barrier things can break down fast.

In any scientific paper if you use a term that has extra meaning beyond the dictionary or deeply known jargon of the field you must define your term, after that you can use it all you want    Problem is so many SJWs don’t define their terms when stepping out of the SJW bubble which can offend a lot of people.

Racism by all dictionary definitions requires the motivation to be coming from a point of racial supremacy.   In sociology and academia, racism is a lot more complex, systemic and unconscious.  An unconscious racial bias is according to sociology racism.  According to the dictionary, it is not.  

Many of the people we are calling racist don’t think they are racially superior to minorities, they may have racial prejudice, or cultural supremacy, but they don’t believe they are genetically superior to them at all.  By Dictionary definition that makes them not a racist.  It can make them prejudiced and bigoted, but not a racist and for people who are not in academia, the dictionary is their bible and go to reference point of how to communicate.  

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Race realists are racists, nazis are racists, people who unconsciously favor a white person over a black person are not racist, they are racially prejudiced thanks to inherent biases of the system.  But they are sociologically racist.  

We are often making the same mistake creationists do when they try to come into a science discussion and push their colloquial definition of theory on us,   When crossing that academic/colloquial barrier, we must define our terms and which definition we mean or expect an angry defensive backlash from people.   Add to that fact that racism begins to lose its social stigma when the phrase “we are all a little racist” is used.  It doesn’t mean we are all a little racial supremacist, it means our biases gets in the way, and the system reinforces them.  This may have helped to weaken the taboo of being an actual racist.

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I’ve had discussions with fellow SJWs and some claimed that the dictionary was written by white males and words are fluid and sociological racism is a better definition than the dictionary definition.   You may have a point, and it may not be fair to have had white men define you words, but words made by white men control the language at this point. and if you want to use the language to let people understand stuff you either have to define your terms every time you talk to a different person or use the dictionary definition until the dictionary changes as it does over time to catch up with society.   Sadly thanks to the fact that we are a democracy, on top of being oppressed, the oppressed have had to do the long difficult work of communicating in language the oppressors understand, to gain allies and votes.  In the discussions neither of us were able to convince each other, but this is my list of arguments about it.  

Scientists have discovered that when they use certain primed terms it triggers a mental shutdown in discussion.  Evolution, climate change, global warming, these triggers cause people to mentally shut down and prevent them from listening to anything any further.  They found that if they dropped the use of these trigger terms and explained it without them, people were more likely to have their position changed.  Using the sociological term for racism, as opposed to the dictionary definition of racism, without defining your terms may be triggering people to mentally shut down as they feel you are insulting them and comparing them to Nazis.  We had a lot of cultural kick back from using the word privilege but for the most part, its definition seems to have permeated the culture better than sociological racism did, because it’s probably half as offensive as being called a racist.  Also there really sadly isn’t another word to encapsulate that definition though perhaps there should have been to make the medicine go down a little easier.

When talking to anyone about racism, defining your terms is essential or you will be talking past each other, once the terms are defined you can use them all day long.  Sociological racism, racial prejudice, racial biases, systematic racism may be better terms to use, on the outset of a discussion on sociological racism until the term is defined, or at least you can link people to the concept so they can understand what you mean.

It may do nothing, it may be splitting hairs but if we can increase dialog in any way to change minds, I’m going to try it.  These people aren’t monsters, they just have some deep seated ideals that haven’t been challenged, and the harder we make it for them to challenge those ideas and create a distressful paradigm shift the harder our fight will be.

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Be Careful of Agitprop, Even If It Is 100% True

At the moment thanks to the internet, we have become more and more aware of our nation’s dark history and current flaws.   Some people for the first time are woke and see how awful our nation is and always has been and if you only look at the bad, this nation should burn down to the ground.  

History is great because you can spin it to say whatever you want it to because it is so dense and there is so much of it.  For the most part US history in schools tells you all the amazing things about america and glosses over the bad parts of history that America did.  The amount of attention spent on a subject indicates how important it is. The thing is, for the most part, all of those good things done are true but all the bad things done are also true and just as real and paradigm shifts are harsh and people can freak out and lose perspective.   

I follow a group called “shit bootlickers say” on facebook.  It is an anarchist group that makes fun of anyone not them. I follow them because as I’ve said before I 75% agree with them and I learn some bits of info you won’t get from the usual liberal outlets.  However 2 things i hate about the group is the level of pro-violence they call for and the use of the liberal as a whipping boy for licking to boots of corporations

 

 

Agitprop is a term that is a shortened form of agitation propaganda.   This was used by the soviet union but also used in WWII against the germans by the british of using misinformation and pointing out the the faults of the government they are attacking in stark contrast, while appearing to be one of them.   There are many methods of doing this.  

One is destroying or bringing into question cultural norms and things the average person takes for granted. For example, the demonizing of once iconic heroes like columbus or Teddy roosevelt or Jefferson.  The same is true with turning history on its head when the Government was long believed to being the good guy and it turns out they did some horrible things in the process.  Questioning police brutality.  All of these things are good advancements in our coming to terms with the truth of reality.  Our founder fathers were 50% great men and 50% horrible monsters, and throughout time our goal is to change that percentage difference to all great men and women.  But the world is complicated and there are often forces outside of a leader’s control.   

Black lives matter and antifa hate the police but they are attacking the wrong body when they attack the federal government.  State and local governments hire and maintain cops, but you will see in a lot of anarch, BLM and antifa groups the federal government blamed while state and local involvement and elections continue to draw anemic crowds which is the only way to end police brutality.  So they encourage the idea of using violence because cops are racists.   This is where agitprop take facts and neglects other facts to try and get people to cross the line into violence.

 They also use the fear of racism in our nation to encourage violence and stoke fear.   Nazis aren’t on our doorstep, 1/3rd voted for trump, a majority for racist reasons but they wanted deportation not death or mexicans they deemed illegally here and muslims they were fed since 9/11 were going to kill them.  Only a tiny tiny minority of trump supporters have a nazi level of racism, and the law will still in the end see them brought to justice if they exact violence on a minority.  If it doesn’t happen then voting in state and local is the only way to fix that.  

The Limits of Legal Free Speech is in No Way Simple

 

I had someone ask me recently, at what point does the law divide free speech and intimidation?   At what point is allowing the National Socialist party to have a parade through a jewish part of town not intimidation and a threat to one’s life?

I didn’t know so I contacted profmth, and He sent me this response.  I consider myself pretty well versed the in the first amendment and I didn’t know this so pretty sure the majority of people screaming that PC culture is destroying free speech sure don’t know this.

Here is his response, sadly he does not have times to make videos but he gave me permission to cite him.   

In response to where is the dividing line between something like freedom of assembly and threats? because that neo-nazi group that the ACLU defended (in that famous case) the group was going to march through a majority jewish neighborhood. Was that not intimidation? what do you think of laws in europe against holocaust denial, or against nazi symbols and groups?’

It’s a good question with which courts have been wrestling for a long time and in response to which they have provided little clear guidance beyond the proposition that the First Amendment does not protect what are called “true threats.” At the general level, a true threat is speech (verbal or symbolic) that seriously communicates possible future violence or unlawful use of force against a person and/or a person’s property and/or someone close to the person to whom the threat is communicated. Something can be a true threat regardless of whether the speaker intends to carry it out.

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For example, Alice calls the local airport to say that she will place several bombs in the main passenger terminal. Alice has neither the intention nor ability to place bombs in the main passenger terminal, nor does she know anyone who has such intent and ability; her intent is solely to communicate a possible threat of violence that will scare people and provoke a significant response, e.g., deployment of resources to check for explosives over a period of time. When a group of Nazis marches through a Jewish community, prominently displaying swastikas, are they communicating a true threat or a political/ideological message, albeit it a vile, offensive one? When KKK adherents burn a cross, is a true threat or a political/ideological message being communicated? Does it matter where they burn the cross? Is the speaker’s intent determinative or the listener’s response to the speech or both? Courts have been all over the place and often unclear in cases with these and similar facts; they have sometimes been unsure whether threat analysis is even appropriate, and they have offered various tests for determining whether something is a true threat which when applied to the same facts conclude to contradictory results.

For example, in Virginia v. Black, a 2003 SCOTUS case, the Court dealt with a challenge to a Virginia statute that made it a felony “for any person with the intent of intimidating any person or group to burn a cross on the property of another, a highway or other public place.” The statute went on to say that “any such burning shall be prima facie evidence of an intent to intimidate a person or group.” The Court said that “[t]he First Amendment permits Virginia to outlaw cross burnings done with the intent to intimidate because burning a cross is a particularly virulent form of intimidation.” However, the Court struck down the part of the statute that made cross-burning itself evidence of intent to intimidate. The Court noted that “a burning cross is not always intended to intimidate;” sometimes it is “a statement of ideology [or] a symbol of group solidarity.” There must, the Court said, be an “effort to distinguish among these different types of cross burnings.” So, “a cross burning done with the purpose of creating anger or resentment” is protected by the 1st Amendment, but “a cross burning done with the purpose of threatening or intimidating a victim” is not protected by the 1st Amendment. How can a court decide which is which? The Court did not say. In sum, this area of 1st Amendment jurisprudence is, at best, muddled. It doesn’t look like it will be clarified any time soon–though legal scholars have floated various tests for sorting out what is and is not beyond the 1st Amendment’s protection. What *can* be said unequivocally is that people’s being offended or angered by speech (verbal or symbolic) does not place the speech beyond the 1st Amendment’s protection. That would gut the 1st Amendment’s free speech protection, which is primarily there to protect unpopular speech. Additionally, to the extent that courts have carved out an exception to the 1st Amendment’s protection for intimidation/threats, it has been narrow and inconsistent.

 

So there we have it.  One of the biggest problems we have when it comes to defining the limits of civil free speech is that we don’t even have a good defining line for the limits legal free.  

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What is offensive versus what is intimidation is a very thin and murky wire.  Is shouting sieg heil or even leading a twitter troll attack free speech or intimidation?  Either way we shouldn’t socially let that slide.  When alt-righters/freeze peach warriors claim that free speech is under attack they often don’t even have the first clue what free speech is.  Is social kickback of any kind intimidation?  They sure think so even though their free speech is often intimidating to another group of people.  And with some, they don’t actually intend to be intimidating, they just find what they are doing funny because it’s taboo because it has been a source of intimidation for generations and there are deep scars that still ache and they they get pissy that other people get pissy when they use that language, and they view the negative treatment as a form of silencing and intimidation and everyone else just needs to grow a thicker skin when what they are actually doing is akin to the porch monkey scene in clerks 2. Because they are lucky enough to have never experienced real intimidation or discrimination they can’t see what the big deal is, all they know is that because they are getting a reaction from what they see as self-righteous virtue signaling people who are over reacting it just makes them want to do it even more.  Even moreso they get approval and often money for saying it because they get a lot of views on the internet as they figured out the way to break the algorithm or someone makes it funny or cool on the internet.  

The further we get from a bigotry or fascist saturated era the more people forgot or never learned how bigotry and fascism operates, and how it uses arguments of free speech and intellectual openness and honesty to sneak its way into society  and infect the more intellectually vulnerable.

As Sartre put it “Never believe that anti-Semites are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. The anti-Semites have the right to play. They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors. They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past.”

Social free speech is a prisoners dilemma, to make yourself and society politically vulnerable to new ideas, the people putting forth those ideas must also make themselves vulnerable mentally and intellectually as the human mind is often more easily manipulated by showmanship and emotion over actual facts and logical arguments with a foundation in evidence.  You can make any idea sound reasonable using logic if you can obfuscate that the founding premise is false.  Especially if that argument is that a certain group does not deserve equal rights, or known arguments used such as race realism that has in the past helped fuel these arguments and in turn, laws.

I believe in equality and freedom of speech and expression . Except when a person uses that opinion and speech to threaten another person’s ability directly or indirectly to the same freedoms of speech and expression or even ability to exist or feel the same level of personal safety.  We can no longer have a real vulnerable discussion, all ideas aren’t now being discussed, the rarely spoken rules of the game of free speech are now broken and it becomes the difference between a game and guerilla warfare in hopes of leading to war or total takeover while pretending to be super polite and above the fray.

Free speech is a very new concept in terms of human evolution.  Which means it is fragile and easily broken, and its scaffolding is delicate and took generations to build.  It requires societal agreements or free speech can be destroyed if people wish to use it with no social repercussions, and free speech can be used to destroy free speech if that speech discusses removing rights of certain people in the population.  The people claiming to be the defenders of free speech most often don’t understand what it is and how their abuse of free speech could damage it..   

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The only person you should not tolerate is the intolerant.  That ceases to be free speech and becomes a one sided declaration of war on free speech.  They believe that not everyone has the right to free speech.  The only way they should be given even close to a platform is on an interview with very tough questions by an expert in the actual field of study to show why there are serious problems with the person’s ideas.    Should violence be used against them? Not unless they are threatening violence and even then, de-escalating the situation is the best case as was shown with the Portland stabbing, and they tried to de-escalate the situation.  Using violence without a threat of violence just allows them to smugly watch a stupid liberal go to jail and they can sue you for damages, which is often what WBC is always hoping to incite when they exercise their free speech.   By the same legal metric, pro-lifers could punch anyone who stated a position of pro-choice because they think we are pro-genocide even if the science doesn’t back them up.

What must be done is social pressure and protesting of platforms, but do it smartly.   Letting these hateful people march and protest is actually the best thing, if they are unarmed.  It allows them to be exposed to the public and people have used pictures of them at these rallies to make them lose their jobs, which has a way bigger impact on them than a physical punch.  They are hoping for a reaction to put you in a legal bad light, it’s a tactic snic knew very well and why the non-violence policy is essential.  If they can’t get an illegal action out of you, it’s hard to vilify you and disregard your opinion and make them look like the victim.   They like WBC will shrink into the background noise as a failed idea into the dustbin of history like the horrible spot in history they deserve.

Tired of Spoonfeeding and Handholding Conservatives? Thats too Damn Bad.

I had someone block me after complaining he was tired of having to handhold and spoon-feed facts to the rest of america, but he didn’t know the basic differences between single payer and public option.   This indicates a belief of serious intellectual superiority of many people, who believe themselves to have figured out the best way of doing things and are tired of explaining things to people as if it was brand new.  It should be just natural to everyone by now because it makes so much sense obviously.  

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Every group has people like this.  They think because they get it, other people who don’t get it are just idiots.  They should just smarten up or I should give up explaining anything to them because they are stupid anyway or just assholes.   I see this alot with people who claim there is no point in engaging racists, we should just punch them.  For one thing most racists in america are sociologically racist because of their biases and not white supremacist nazis.    

Most of them just fear what they don’t understand, and are made uncomfortable by it.  Most fear mexicans from taking their jobs and muslims coming to bomb them.  It is fear that drives racism, that and decline in wages, which studies show decreases IQ, and decreased IQ increases racism.  Most of the trump voters don’t consider themselves nazis, or feel they are genetically superior to blacks, mexicans or muslims, they feel they are culturally superior to them. And if they would just pull their pants up or stay in their own country and fix it they wouldn’t have to come to my country with their drugs and crime even though all the data shows everything about these assumptions are wrong.

 They were taught to assume the best about the police and the government.  They assume that blacks were asking for it when they get shot and the cop needed to defend himself.  Not because they believe blacks are inferior but because they believe cops are righteous knights of justice and only shoot bad people.  They would rather make excuses for the cop than have this fantasy shattered. Racial Bias just helps make this easier. Systematic racism is much more dangerous than the Klan or Nazis, evil is much more boring and banal. Voting in state and local elections for the people who hire and fire cops is the only way to fix this.

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Sadly many people who are for black lives matter don’t understand the importance of voting in state and local elections.  But are sick of explaining it to white people and are ready to punch them and brand them as nazis.  Once you say you can’t reason with someone, especially if they are someone you falsely equate with a non-human or evil villain, you are correct,there is no reasoning with them.  Changing minds does work through communication, but as our schools have failed to teach basic civics and persuasion and communication science, punching and violence begins to seem like the only option to some.

You aren’t as smart as you think you are, this a democracy, not  a purist ideological rule.  Change doesn’t come the more ideologically pure you are, it comes from number of votes, and the way to change votes is to use communication science to spoonfeed your message slowly and carefully to everyone.  How do you think fox news got so good at brainwashing an entire generation?  They have communication science down to an art.  Everyone needs some hand holding and spoon feeding at times, it’s the best way to learn.  At a point when they get it they can pass that info on to others.   The only reason why any of us has the good ideas or changed outlook that we have is because some one spoon fed it to us in a way we could get or we got little snippets of the big picture over a long period of time and we finally were able to put it all together for ourselves.  

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  Education, organization, networking and fundraising are the 4 pillars of activism, so get to handholding, and spoonfeeding and stop complaining about other people being uneducated or stupid, the only reason you know what you know is because at some point someone held your hand and helped you learn.

Rich Mouse vs Poor Mouse

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Back in indiana, wealth was not really a thing.  I grew up what would have been a middle class income except we had 6 kids so we lived in cycling poverty.  I worked since I was 16 at one job or another to pay for every vehicle I’ve ever had, cycling in and out of debt to my parents, till I joined the military where I was cycling in and out of debt for the first two years to my roommate until I figured out a method of savings that worked for me and ceased having financial problems.  After the military, I went to college on a mix of GI bill and student loans while working full time and still have student loans after 10 years to pay off as the value we put on paying scientists is pathetic at best. Not to mention the financial stress of the economic crash.

I moved to indianapolis and cycled in and out of terrible jobs for 5 years as I graduated at the beginning of the financial crisis.   Everyone around me was in pretty much the in same boat as me some better, some worse off.  The only people doing really well were people several decades older than me.

Then we moved to northern virginia.  Northern virginia in an interesting area to say the least.  DC pretty much spurts money all around the area if you have the right jobs and connections and so many people around there are loaded which makes cost of living in the area through the roof.  Top it off that it’s a right to work state and minimum wage is the same as it is in Indiana, and one’s ability to thrive in the area if you haven’t figured out how to get yourself into one of those high paying government contract companies is very low.  My partner had to spend time wasting her degree as degree inflation around here is also through the roof, educating children in enrichment classes, or to the parents babysitting.  

The number of self-important entitled negligent parents who don’t really seem to want to actually take care of their kids and want to pawn them off on someone else was a massive shock.  Many of the educational activities required one-on-one with parent and child, but the parents would throw a hissy fit when they found out they couldn’t just dump their kids off and get away from them, and many would just sit on their phones and expect the educators to babysit the kids for them, ignoring them.  Educational “enrichment” classes are all the rage here, because everyone wants the “best” many trying to push their kids into the most competitive most rigid most structured schedule so they can have the “best” kid, claiming their child is advanced for their age so their 3 year old should be allowed to take this class that all science shows is pretty much psychologically impossible.  Also children need to play and have some flexibility or they will grow up as uncreative and inflexible as their parents, who would be floored that my partner was good at basic problem solving and puzzled by her DIY skills and attitudes. They just pay someone else to do everything unless they want a hobby to be socially active.

Status symbols are huge here, so if you have the right purse you are given special status, as are kept wives who live like pets whose job seems to be micromanaging their nannies and au pairs which are foreign exchange nannies that can be sent back home the second one of these mothers gets a hair up their asses if the au pair assumes the child should be smart enough not to accidentally kill themselves or god forbid an older child take responsibility for a younger sibling.

Because of this mindset sexism is surprisingly higher in this area which was a shock than even is red state indiana.   We have a shared bank account and when my partner took money out to buy a car, the teller just handed me the receipt to sign.  I, a little thrown off said no, she needs to do it.  The lady goes “oh that’s so nice of you, like I was doing my partner some great service and both of us were stunned, I was able to go “its her money” which confused the teller and made things rather awkward for the rest of the transaction.

Culture around here is pretty much non-existent except in little pockets.   Culture has been replaced with materialism.  Their malls are their culture spaces, or manufactured hipster districts pretending to be organic but designed by corporate interests, or they spend a lot to travel to go get culture somewhere else.  

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Sadly this heavy amount of wealth is also the part of millennials that are the target of most marketing, and are who most researchers stereotype as millennials. When many people think millennials, they think spoiled, self-centered, selfie taking, kids who have everything handed to them.  When I think millenials, I think somewhat confused kids with good intentions and a great amount of empathy working 3 jobs with a bachelor’s cause they can’t find a steady decent paying job and they were lied to about how much they would make after school and they are just barely paying off their student loans. That is how a larger chunk of the millennial population lives than the also large but smaller than the rest of the millennial poption upper middle class/upper class millennials. People here also are just ceo’s or vice presidents based on what social circle you live in.  In Harvard and yale business you are taught how to only socialize with the right people, meaning people who are wealthy or powerful and how to ingratiate yourself with them, and avoid the common riff-raff, or anyone below your level of income.  It’s just expected you will get to be in that and the rest of your lowlies are peons and you know what is best, and it is a constant fight to keep them productive while trying to cut their wages at any turn you can.

Sitting on boards is a thing out here, and if you know the right person, you can make $20,000 attending 4 meetings a year on a board.  Our DC metro leader came in to fix our crumbling subway system and had to boot 4 members of the safety board because they had zero credentials for safety they just knew the right people.

We need to begin looking at extreme wealth for what it is.  A mental health crisis.  Extreme wealth completely isolates these people as they literally can have no friends and they assume everyone else is after their money.  They can trust no one but their most loyal financial advisors which is the closest thing they have to friends. the more extreme that wealth gets the worse they get.  Their empathy is damaged because of this, and in their boredom they think that building even more wealth regardless of who gets hurt in the process means they win the game.  70% of wealthy people also just inherited it so they enter into the game as children isolated from the opposite extreme and barely understand they even exist.    Wealth for individual merit is a great thing.  however it leads to negative happiness, not only for them, but for all the people who could never be their friends as they are all desperate.  This is why I am for the estate tax and heavy taxes on wealth and investment transactions.  Wealth as a reward is a great thing. Wealth just because, corrodes the world and the minds of the very wealthy.   

The rich make up a tiny minority world, they are kings and lords and disconnected from the world like celebrities, but their measure of winning the game of life is the amount of money they’ve hoarded.   For their and our own mental health and wellbeing we need to increase their taxes or balance their comparative income to the lowest employee.  They are so isolated and trapped in their own wealth they are lonely and neurotic.  Unfortunately they have the power to take that neuroticism out on the rest of us, and the damage is incredibly real.  

Getting over White Male Guilt is Essential for Progress

You’ve been taught a certain narrative throughout your life, you believe there is justice in the world and the rules apply to everyone.  As you get older, you begin learning your nation’s actual history without the nationalistic cherry picking and find out data showing how the justice system and social biases impact everything giving you free passes over minorities and women.   You realize that as your family wasn’t impacted by generational poverty, you were allowed to play by the rules of a game that others weren’t even allowed to participate in.  

You are then told that some of your habits and mindsets help to perpetuate them and media and stories you hold dear are also full or ideas that help to perpetuate them.  Your first reaction is that of a potential paradigm shift, and the world in your head and this new information are clashing causing mental distress.  You also have cognitive dissonance because the ideal you and the real you are now at odds.  This generates guilt because that is what the brain likes to do to you.  It is especially so if a person is telling you that you should feel bad or guilty or you perceive it as such or you are getting jumped on as being a horrible person if you didn’t say the right thing out of pure ignorance.  

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These people are frustrated and angry that this mindset exists in this time period and although they may be right, they are often very oblivious as to how long it took them to come to that position and how they were initially impacted by the paradigm shift, or they were raised in a social class or bubble where they always believed it and don’t have the first clue how to communicate and how rough paradigm shifts are.

When it comes to racial and sex based justice, learning the past and statistics can hit you hard, it’s painful mentally, it’s like hallucinating when your sensory inputs and sensations don’t match. causing disorientation.   And the worst part happens when you feel guilt or are made to feel guilt.   First things first, do not feel guilty for having privilege, it might take you some time to adjust but there is nothing you can do to change your past, and up until that point, if you were trying to be a good person as best you could with the knowledge you had, you are already doing better than most people.   Now you have to non-judgmentally take this new information and carefully adjust your manners and habits and be aware of the world around you.  It will take time, habits don’t change overnight.  Ignore people who try and guilt you for not changing fast enough.  the brain is slower to change than they even begin to understand.  The only purpose of guilt is to induce change, once you have changed you have no reason to feel guilty anymore or it will just cripple you or you will act like a white knight or a white savior trying to save women and minorities instead of just giving them the respect they deserve, or treat yourself as a lesser being.  

Life is a crap shoot, some of us are given particular advantages over others.  I can’t change that I wasn’t born a millionaire any more than I could change myself to be born an impoverished african child with sleeping sickness.  There is no reason to feel guilty about the privilege you have even though that may be your first response.  What you do moving forward is what matters, you can either resist the paradigm shift and find websites with cherry picked data that tell you what you believed before is true and this new information is a lie, or you can do the mentally painful task of processing the paradigm shift and getting over that hump and become a better person and have a happier world.   

Paradigm shifts can be confused for white, male guilt, it’s disorienting, a large section of your knowledge is wrong and too shallow and ideas and mindsets dying can feel like an actual person dying because that is a part of you that has to be changed and purged and you will never be the same person entirely again.  Guilt just adds salt to the wounds and the brain hates cognitive dissonance more than a paradigm shift and will tie itself in mental knots to resist that, please get over your white male guilt when people tell you about things your ancestors did, or what your government did.  Your past was the best you could do with the knowledge at hand, the future and what you decide to do from that point on decides whether you should feel guilty or not.

They Can Divide us by Tactics Alone

I got unfriended by someone on facebook by someone I respect for the first time.  Belief and politics wise we are pretty much identical.  We’ve been facebook friends for years now.

The problems I’m having the most issues on is discussing tactics and communication. The issue at hand was about using violence in a democracy and if it actually can make things better.    Now mind you it doesn’t help that I was in one conversation, on the subject, thought it was posted by the same group, then went into the discussion was the mindset of dealing with the other group.  I have not seen any evidence that violence changes things in a democratic society.  Any time I tried to use arguments against it, they pretty much all shot me down with the fact that I was privileged and weren’t actually affected by the issues at hand.   I used every argument I could and every social tell I could to let them know the I was one of them but as they could not see my face and how much I cared and how much empathy I had, they read troll on me and called me an elitist snob.  He ended up blocking me because he didn’t like my arguments against violence.  Since I wasn’t for violence, I obviously didn’t care as much as they did, and my privilege was shut down.   

This is one point where we share disagreement, tactics not substance, and the bubble was tightened, one trip up, one disagreement on even the smallest level and you get removed from someone’s bubble.  And since they can’t tell if you are genuine or not and can’t see your emotions, you must be a troll and I can’t really blame them.  

Another discussion I had was with an issue on communication, it was on the topic on mansplaining vs other kinds of communication of feminism to men.  I left the tactics against mansplaining and manterrupting other sources but was trying to focus on what scientists said about how communication works and the best tactics.  All of a sudden I got dogpiled by people accusing me of mansplaining, and nothing I could say could save me from their taunts.   My being a man was enough to shut me down.  Questioning tactics is off limits even genuine allies.  

Unfortunately once again because they weren’t there with me in person and see I was genuine they heard every well actually smug male asshole you could think of.  Every time the bubble closes off, people have divergent evolution on thinking and when they come back together they are unrecognizable in language and beliefs.  This division is what caused the Bernie/Hillary divide in the party, Bernie supporters were talking about stuff we had no idea what they were talking about because they only talked to other bernie supporters.  We all want the same thing but we are divided by tactics and if your side doesn’t want or approve of the tactics your group uses they are secretly colluding with the enemy and are just as bad.   

This has to stop, or they will continue to divide us until we are nothing.  This is how the spanish civil war happened with partisanship reaching violent levels and any form of disagreement met with violence leading the the rise of fascism as a backlash to the leftist violence.  The left and right were fairly evenly matched and the left looked like it was going to win, but the left ended up eating itself because they disagreed on tactics and they couldn’t compromise at all and new fights broke out between factions.   Thanks to the internet and you can surround yourself with people who agree with you or at least don’t openly disagree with you for fear of unfriending you can happily live in a bubble thinking you are the most righteous.  Pick your battles, there are certain things worth blocking over, there are certain people worth blocking or attacking, but the assumption that everyone is an asshole or a troll for disagreeing with you is exactly what their strategy is and we can’t organize or compromise on anything or we aren’t purist enough.   MLK was able to get the pro violence black groups and the anti-violence conservative black groups to work together and they accomplished something amazing, and since we live in a democracy that is the only way to change anything.  If we can’t even question tactics without getting blackballed from the bubble, no change will come and violence will truly end up having to be the only answer.

 

 

We no longer have the same reference points.

One of the things I used to pride myself was that I could dumb down and break down anything to nearly anyone.  I learned this with my mother because I wanted her to understand things I enjoyed.  I got the bug for it on the rare occasion that I did substitute teaching after the navy. During the middle of the recession I worked as an adjunct teacher at a for profit college on and off and would take 50 year old people who never had math above 6th grade always thought they were bad at math and taught them algebra with A’s and B’s.  This teaching bug is why I started making videos.  I’ve been here 9 years this march, but around 2012, I began having problems more and more explaining things to people.

My last two videos on free speech and safe space are great examples.   One of the advantages I relied on back in the day is that we were all starting from the same reference point of knowledge and understanding and from there I could build on it to explain things. The people who disagree with me in the comments section of those videos and others don’t have the same reference point as I do on really, really basic things.  Take for example when you use an analogy.  So many either don’t understand how analogies work and their limits, or they are deliberately playing ignorant as a trolling mechanism.  An analogy is a quick simple comparison to easily transmit an idea to another person.  For an analogy to work is for you to focus on how things are alike get the concept and ignore everything else.  What many will do is then try to infer or expand the similarities which completely breaks the analogy making it a useless mechanism.

This is causing a lot of framing to break down in the younger generations, as not everyone holds the same ideas and underpinnings about a certain idea which has some advantages as it’s harder for political think tanks to target, but also bad because you can’t have a mutual discussion where everyone is on the same page.       Only the very rarest of person back in the first 4 years of youtube would do this.  It was such a useful tool.  Now it’s actually a large number detractors who do this and take your analogies literally and break them.  Another problem is the fact that the internet has created completely different frames of reference and thinking understandings that really don’t work with how most of my generation was taught to communicate.  Internet bubbles are also creating new common knowledge, reference points and jargon and ideas so we end up completely talking past each other.

Take for example free speech.  I was taught how free speech works, its advantages, its legal limitations, its complex legal terms and history, and a nuances rubric of how free speech works, is perpetuated and is enforced legally.  The people who disagreed with me in the comments seemed to just start with the strong belief that what they think free speech is and it should be defended at all costs, and fuck anything that gets in its way be it laws or real serious damage it can do to people.  We are coming from two completely different ends in this discussion.  There is too much information they don’t have, I would literally have to travel back in time, make series of videos on the basic building blocks that they are missing in their knowledge, then work my way up to the videos at which point we would be at the same nuanced understanding and if they still disagreed with me, we could have a real nuanced discussion and they may be right and change my opinion on the issue.

As it stands, I know too much nuance on the issue and they are completely oblivious what they don’t know about the issue and are completely lacking nuance, just a dogma of free speech good, safe spaces bad, but at this point I’m a fucking cuck mangina and they have to fucking own my ass and win.  Nothing I will say at this point in the learning cycle is going to nudge their mind one iota.  I have a complex set of building block that scaffold off of each other, they are just willing things to work a certain way.  It’s like trying the discuss nuances of the rules of the complicated game I assume people know and they don’t actually understand the rules or they know like a few vague rules and want to hang their entire argument on why they won on those rules they know.

Do not teach unless they are willing to learn- Confucius

Part of this problem I fear comes from the teach to the test mindset and if it wasn’t on a test, they never learned it like we who went to high school back in the 90s.  On top of that it kills their love of learning worse than school did for us and makes it even harder for them to learn.  When i tutor these days i feel like there are two types of kids I deal with, the type who might as well be college level and just need help with nuances I’ve long forgotten, and kids whose teachers do things like use only notes and no books for complex subjects and never required them to learn things that for decades were just basic parts of learning,  mind you the differences are often based on income and who could afford the better schools, better teachers and whose school could take the hit if their standardized tests were too low.

This leads to my being really bad at not making people feel stupid when I’m shocked that they don’t know something

The amount we don’t know drifting.  In every generation there is lost information that must be relearned based on what they focused on.

The only time I’ve really been able to break down and discover misunderstandings was when I asked people about the regressive left and asked for examples, and it was not fun but I think I made some breakthroughs with people.  The research was like reading a lot of angry confused horrible scientific papers, most of them with horrible sources that insulted you.

While arguing with people on my sj videos in my comments section it always throws me at the level of ignorance people have about basic subjects i just assume they have.  They are missing key steps of knowledge in the logical process i always assumed everyone understood.    Often they will react to an argument I am making trying to argue something I actually believe but left out because it should be obvious that I believe it. When you tell them,  “well of course i believe that” it looks to them as if you are back peddling or making ad hoc addendums, or they made you admit something and therefore have you on the ropes.  I wonder if the only way to fix this as they already think you are a cuck mangina and all your topics trigger mental shutdown is to create another completely different non partisan channel to teach basic underpinnings of ideas of ignorance that you find people in your comments just don’t understand about the topics at hand.  Then maybe get someone else to read your script for you so you can link it and they wont realize its you.  Maybe even do a collaborative channel like Dnews or Crashcourse.

However due to these mixed reference points now every internet disagreement, even with people you agree with on almost everything suddenly becomes hostile and combative.  They assume you mean one thing through the lens of their reference point while you meant something entirely different and took a certain additional piece of information as obviously included because we have the same frame of reference.  Also I think a lot of us are also extra combative because we are used to being attacked and it’s nearly impossible to relax and chew over an idea from someone on the internet as trolls view that as a sign of weakness and try to treat your openness as an invitation for them to go for the jugular.

Mind you, since I’ve started blocking people who deny climate science and the Russian hacking and trolling, The number of people who have had these misunderstandings has dropped significantly.  So maybe it’s a pretend ignorance just used by trolls to fuck with us.

The Renaissance Man vs The Organizer/Coordinator

Growing up i was taught to admire, look up to and aspire to be like the great thinkers and renaissance men,  multi faceted multi talented wealth of knowledge.  Einstein,  da vinci, Tesla, Jefferson, Franklin, Edison, Ford.  Intellectual giants of their time.   They changed society as we know it and i was told i could too.  

  The corporate cubicle work drone was looked down on.  Materialism was as well.   Sales and marketing were looked on as dishonest.   People knew how to do one thing and didn’t question things beyond an industrial cog in a wheel

 I am a former naval nuclear electrician. Current microbiologist with a minor in chemistry with 9 years work experience,  i know a semester’s worth of programming in 6 different programming languages two of which area obsolete, i have an intermediate fluency rate in German and French,  i have 3 years experience in self taught 3d printing,  i was a adjunct instructor for 2 years at for profit colleges in 7 different subjects,  i am teaching myself android slowly,  i study psychology and history for fun and keep up on all the latest science findings.  I can cook, clean and sew.  I was a semester’s worth of classes away from associates in electronics tech before i moved.  I took extra classes to try and prove hypothesis i had from anatomy and physiology for massage, to air conditioning for long  discarded ideas.   I know how to and enjoy editing sound and videos.  I have 3 bachelors degrees worth of college credits all paid for either the military or out of pocket i can tutor you in almost anything.

My gf has an equally impressive collection of skills but as this is my blog i won’t go into more details   When people talk to us they just assume we must be absolutely loaded professionals, or at least comfortable enough to travel to exotic places.   I have been to 4 countries because of the military and she had never left the country not for want of trying.

However learning a lot does not make you rich in this day an age.  It barely puts food on the table.  The lauded renaissance man is not recognized by the modern world as being worthwhile.  Individuals who are really good at a certain skill set are people who make a living wage, but the people who make the most money and breakthroughs are the organizers.

The organizers know enough to get many people who are really good at their field, get them to communicate, collaborate and work together, blending their talents, spitball ideas in a safe space, try and fail, and eliminate bad ideas.  Warren Buffet made it rich not because he knew everything but because he knew just enough to spot a good idea and the way it was organized to project a good investment win.

Every person at the center of a movement who changed anything politically was a great organizer, they motivated and inspired people to work, deliberate discuss and brainstorm ideas.  They brought people together who should have been enemies and made them co-workers in a bigger cause.  Sadly all of these people are painted as the great man myth or a renaissance man who were just so genius they did it all on there own, and you can’t do anything like that because you will never be a genius renaissance man.   

The problem with the renaissance man is that they are trying to do everything themselves that a collection of individuals would do so much better.   The organizer has employees that have knowledge on the tip of their tongue, can much better spot errors, they don’t have to struggle and do research themselves, it’s right there for them.

The renaissance man myth has lead to the libertarian ideals of “we don’t need to help out other people we can do it all for ourselves, otherwise you are just weak.”  Dexters lab while funny is ridiculous, same with Batman with his many skills that would actually just make him really crappy at a ton of different things, including construction in a cave, auto maintenance, and suit and gadget assembly.    People spend their entire lives getting good at each of these or even subsegments of these, yet he can do it all BECAUSE HE’S BATMAN!

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Other than being interesting to listen to, assuming the person doesn’t think I sound like a know-it-all, my overload of things I know and the ability to explain them to the average person has given me zero material benefits, and hasn’t helped me invent anything, or become an entrepreneur as it’s often assumed. All the major discoveries and technological advancements that one person by themselves can do have already been discovered, now it requires collaboration of many people to create ground breaking change.   It may someday in the future, but I will have to develop marketing skills as well as convincing investments into my ideas as people tell me that anytime I try ebegging on here I just sound desperate.   I will have to focus on organizing people.  Or maybe I will have to focus on learning to write and publish which is a collection of things to know on a level on its own.  I also may want to go get my masters in biomedical engineering someday.  Sadly my choices on which areas to focus on are made incredibly difficult by how much I know and how many options I have which causes me to lock up.  If we had a living wage or knew I had a thousand years to try everything, being a renaissance man would eventually pay off but you can see why it is so rare these days.

We are a social species and only made it big for social reasons because of division of labor and knowledge.  Sadly the people who are best at their jobs are absolutely ignorant of politics, science and societal issues, as they focus all of their brain power on doing the best job they can to make the most money and never really thinking beyond that.   So I recommend a balance somewhere between myself, and these people.  If you are around someone who appears smarter than you but you are really good at what you do and love it, enjoy learning from them.  Focusing on what you need to know politically and societally and knowing enough science that you know who to trust and who to be skeptical of is essential as is cultivating empathy.  But don’t try to be batman or the da vinci or the other great polymaths back when what there was to know was exponentially less.  And if you want do real change, learn how to organize people and bring out their creativity and utilize their knowhow.  You will make a much bigger difference than some over educated no-body like me on youtube.

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