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Even more than new energy sources, America needs less destructive ways for wealthy white narcissists to feel good about themselves. We are embarked on disastrous energy policies that are literally all cost and no climate gain. We do that so white narcissists can feel morally superior for Saving the Planet. We let criminals out of jail, let the homeless degrade downtowns, destroy universities with DEI, insanely pretend that “male” and “female” are optional labels, and do all of that so that white narcissists can get a buzz for being compassionate, antiracist, non-[whatever]-phobic and generally feeling like a transcendent being.
We let them dictate COVID policy. They still feel proud of themselves because of their self-perception of being sciency and noble despite getting literally everything wrong and causing horrible damage.
Every major current policy or social disaster is the result of efforts to make white narcissists feel good about themselves. “Antiracism” may be completely condescending, irrational, and a net harm to black and brown people, but damn if it doesn’t make white narcissists (and white narcissistic-adjacent POCs) feel good.
Can we build a theme park or a sensory immersion experience or maybe deploy a large cadre of butt-kissing professional esteem polishers? Maybe tell them they are so special, so much better the world can never measure up, so leave the world alone. Anything other than letting twits do policy. The need for this innovation could not be more pressing.Published in General
“We” let “them” dictate Covid policy? Who was that tall, heavy-set man with blond hair who stood next to Fauci at innumerable daily press briefings? For months and months?
An effing bystander, just trying to avoid blame.
The Venn diagram of those who said that no masks, open schools, no lockdowns, and voluntary vaccination meant wanting Grannie to die and those who see racism and sexism everywhere, and those who think that polar bears are nearing extinction because of SUVs is almost a single circle.
Like many people, I got a lot wrong about COVID, but I was calling for focused protection on March 20, 2020. Me and Jay. We’re that tight.
You and I got some stuff wrong because we kept trying to do science. If you and I had done The Science(TM) instead we would always be morally and politically right with a lot less effort
Because Being The Science means never having to say you’re sorry.
OB, they already have their “theme park.” New York Times (e.g. Pravda 1); Washington Post (Pravda 2), the networks (all Ivestia clones). And strut before them every day.
All the white narcissists, not just the wealthy ones.
Maybe a gallery full of cheap copies of the great artists’ work where they could glue themselves to things, throw paint and vomit and lay down and get in the way of people.
And the white narcissists were totally supported by the terrified masses who knew that if anyone dared to breathe on them, they would die an ugly painful death. What a great combination!
I would favor government-funded research into the role of “feeling good about themselves” in political discourse and action, because I am not so sure that’s the driving factor, or that it’s a factor that much distinguishes left from right. I don’t deny the possibility, either, but I would want to see some solid research on it before coming to that conclusion.
As for less destructive ways to do politics, I am in favor.
From the OP: “Can we build a theme park or a sensory immersion experience or maybe deploy a large cadre of butt-kissing professional esteem polishers? Maybe tell them they are so special, so much better the world can never measure up so leave the world alone.”
Seems to me, a narcissist would very much welcome that, as opposed to being in any way deterred by it. As in:”Oooh, a theme park where, as often as I feel like it, I can have my butt kissed, my self-esteem polished, and be told that I’m really, really special? You mean, I can be in heaven without having to die first? Yeah, baby!”.
Well sure, but that’s the point: they get what makes them feel good, without doing damage to anyone else like they do now.
As for alternatives to the “feeling good about themselves,” theory, I used to suggest that leftists all be provided with a yellow dog to kick around so they could take their aggressions out that way instead of beating up on the American people. But I didn’t have any research to back up that theory, either, and besides, I hate for so many yellow dogs to have to suffer.
Maybe they could just kick around other Democrats, the “yellow dog” type?
They can kick around Never-Trumpers instead of yellow dogs. I think Never-Trumpers derive pleasure from being abused by narcissistic white leftists. It’s a win-win.
Well, he did say “white narcissists.”
We can name the park Brave New World.
Good one. And let’s have our own “Atlas Shrugged” park. Think it was in Colorado. Will check out the area in a month or two.
So, narcissists and neurotics. That sums up things during the WuFlu very well.
I seem to remember Narcissists and Neurotics opening for Twisted Sister back in the ’80s.
Galt’s Gulch, wasn’t it?
Got a map? Will ask barfli and W. Chauvinist who I hope to meet soon. Just hope it’s not some underground crap. I was not a Marine.
Does anyone, ever, consider that the man you speak of, was try to simultaneously win an election, deal with a national emergency, that no one was prepared for, and riots in major cities across the nation?
Did he handle it poorly? Possibly. Could he have handled it better? Possibly. Could anyone else, have done better, or worse? Absolutely.
I’m seriously, over Trump. That said, what is to be gained by re – hashing the past , looking for scapegoats? Fauci, district attorneys, who created a revolving door of non prosecutions of rioters. A media empire who conducted a symphony of fear inducement, that heretofore seemed incomprehensible. The list of other possibilities, seems too difficult to consider.
It’s all Trump’s fault!
At the risk of opening a thread that hijacks my own post…. Yes, Trump should have fired Fauci and that buffoon Birx. But we all know that the ensuing hysteria about the GOP war on science etc would have been a political disaster–and have little policy effect because blue state governors would not have changed course. As long as the federal health establishment was run by venal weasels (persuade me that I’m wrong about that inference) the same BS interventions would have been hyped as The Science. The betrayal of the public interest was broad and deep, just one more branch of The Swamp that is never drained.
I recently finished The War on the West by Douglas Murray and Woke Racism by John McWhorter. Two very different approaches to the woke mind virus. Murray focuses on the weird drive to attack one’s own heritage and McWhorter analyses wokism as a quasi-religious phenomenon.
Conservatives ( Burke/Locke variety as opposed to “blood and soil” types) find it difficult to erect a “cancel culture” of their (our) own because it is too weirdly contradictory to claim the right to browbeat others into accepting the notion of freedom of conscience, freedom of thought and beliefs. The woke do not believe that infidels have any entitlement to dignity or freedom of speech so firing, silencing and mob violence are features not bugs.
My take is that while there is a Weimar-like appetite for meaning and membership among a lot of damaged people that provides troops for Antifa, DEI politruks and “studies” majors but that it only comes together because a lot of privileged people inadvertently created a monster when all they wanted was credit for easy virtue-signaling and the concomitant enjoyment of despising the deplorables. Narcissism tipped the scales.
I suspect that for many the real problem with membership in Western culture is not slavery, colonialism or capitalist inequality but its greatness and it’s moral claim on us. Real virtues are hard to live. A conscience formed by religious heritage (however tenuous an residual) is still an annoyance at a buffet of sexual opportunities. Being the Real Me as defined almost entirely by my baser appetites is not consonant with growing in personhood so as to rightfully accept the baton passed from pioneers, hardy immigrants and those who defeated Hitler and Soviet Communism.
Obviously, there is a hell of a lot of subjectivity in the preceding. But how exactly would one empirically test the degree and role of narcissism? What studies could have predicted the rise of Hitler, Robin DiAngelo or Greta Thunberg?
It’s difficult to live up the virtues of our country, if a person only cares about their baser desires and indulgences. Religion calls on us to at least try to be selfless some of the time. That doesn’t jibe with the people you describe, OB
I’m going to “like” your comment because you used “jibe” not the common mistake of “jive.”
I don’t think we need to predict the rise of individuals in order to evaluate your hypothesis, which seems to me more about a cultural/political phenomenon. I think it would be more promising to look into what’s been already done in the way of research on self-esteem to help us think about what researchers have left out and what needs to be done. But I wish someone else would do it. I like learning anthropology to help me understand historical cultural phenomena, even though I’ve never had so much as a single course in the subject, and any topic in anthropology is surrounded by leftists of the activist kind. But sociology and/or psychology? I wish somebody else would do that one. It would take a strong stomach and in my old age I’m getting to be more of a wuss.
Jonathan Haidt has done wonderful work in that area. I read both Coddling of the American Mind and The Righteous Mind. A non-woke conventional liberal , he is scrupulously honest about acknowledging that outlook and rigorous in his loyalty to empirical method. I can recommend without reservation.