Who we are up against

Steve Kinney admin at pilobilus.net
Mon Dec 14 12:50:52 PST 2015

Hash: SHA1

On 12/14/2015 03:11 AM, Zenaan Harkness wrote:

>> I have been pushing this packet of books for around a year
>> now, and from time to time it seems to have been well
>> received:  It's a course in remedial politics, intended to
>> fill basic gaps in people's information about how populist
>> a.k.a. anarchist politics actually works:
>> http://pilobilus.net/strategic_conflict_docs_intro.html
> Thank you. Added to my to read list.

Ding!  Another customer enters the shop...

>>> Another shot to prod you along a bit further:
>>> Those who are compliant with despotic external authority in
>>> the face of their own inner conscience of right and wrong,
>>> ought be regarded as other/ outer/ "them", and treated with
>>> extreme caution!
>>> "Those" sheep happens to be about 60% to 90% of everyone!
>>> You wanna sweep -that- under the carpet of your politically
>>> correct boat?
>> The presumption that people who are notably compliant with 
>> illegitimate  authority have a "conscience" and fixed notions
>> of right and wrong is questionable.
> We're talking about the Milgram experiment - instructor
> (authority, actor), teacher (the sheep), learner (electro shock
> pain receiver for wrong answers, actor).

[ ... ]

> The results speak for themselves!

Indeed they do.  In a context where the test subjects are
self-selected (volunteers) from a population and culture deeply
committed to elaborate, labor intensive submission to authority
(college students), with "the boss" hovering over them demanding
compliance (politely of course), most will continue "only
following orders" to the point of endangering the lives of
anonymous strangers.

I'm not sure this generalizes to describe the behavior of whole
populations in the wild, though.  Certainly, every country of any
size has more than enough pathological "followers" to field
military forces, run concentration camps, etc.  But I think "60%
to 90%" of any population is a very high estimate.

> The results speak for themselves. You keep apologising in
> subtle(?) ways - "oh, it's only the most eager sociopaths" and
> "all the others must have had some other disorders".
> Seriously?

Nope:  I was expressly talking about "Those who comply most
eagerly", not the much larger number whose compliance is marginal,
grudging, or largely pretended.

> This result doesn't need our qualification nor any apology!
> 'We' need a solution to educating 'ourselves' - our 'fellow
> sheep'!

You'll get no arguments from me on that point:  If I could find a
way to put that on a paying basis, I would probably not be flat
broke today.

Major clue:  The most persistent and effective populist resistance
movements have emerged from religious communities.  Our
adversaries understand this well, and spare no expense promoting
atheism to the demographic groups most likely to engage in
political activism.

Terminally corrupt, easily bought clergy - a minority among that
occupation - are kept front and center in public view by mass
media outlets, for the dual purpose of alienating as many 'natural
born rebels' as possible from religion in general, and recruiting
as many 'natural born killers' as possible into a "God and
Country" eg. God IS Country cult paradigm.

>> But as the gap between rewards promised and rewards delivered
>> continues to widen, and the violent excesses of our rulers
>> become more and more obvious, compliance will continue to
>> decline.
> Please - "obviousness" is not a citation!

More obvious to the general public:  As an example consider the
unprecedented mass media coverage of violent crimes by police
officers, and social network propaganda campaigns like those run
by Black Lives Matter, Cop Watch, etc.

Likewise, Liberals and Conservatives are acutely aware of mass
scale economic crimes by our rulers:  The Liberals are taught to
blame Capitalism and the Conservatives to blame Socialism.  The
real perpetrators are billionaires who use Capitalist or Socialist
models where and as they provide maximum advantage; as long as the
general public fails to recognize this the game can continue - but
no matter what, the looting of national economies and attendant
reductions in the rewards of obedience continues.

> And then "we" all suffer your proposed "violent excesses of
> our rulers" - what sort of solution is that?!!!

I have not proposed violent excesses, I have observed them.  Big

> As history shows, not until WAY after its much too late to be
> relevant to those who suffer the torture and or death arising
> from your stated "violent excesses of our rulers".

History:  Satyagraha, Civil Rights, People Power and the Zapatista
movement never happened?  The Dutch did not bring Nazification of
their country to a grinding halt, and Iceland is still controlled
by a gang of criminal bankers?

As rationalizations go, imagining State and Corporate actors to be
all-powerful and civil society weak and helpless, is a GREAT
excuse for personal non-action.  That's why State aligned actors
consistently present these Big Lies as Eternal Truths.

> Why do you keep qualifying this as though it's somehow "ok"
> and "explainable" - are you proposing to remove the "reward" of
> all salaries of all government employees? I'm sure Juan and I
> would agree - but do you think that would be attainable? Right,
> just like before Libya got blown up by the USA - refer Hillary
> "We came, we saw he [Gaddafi] died" Clinton?

An angry fighter is a losing fighter.  Things that are not "OK"
are in fact explainable, and if your explanations accurately model
the causes of Bad Things, they will enable you to develop
effective strategies for reducing or eliminating those Bad Things.

We have all been taught that Bad Things are done by Bad People,
and that the universal solution is to identify, hate, and destroy
those Bad People.  We are taught this by propagandists employed by
Bad People, so that our responses to the bad things they do will
be self defeating.  The same naive beliefs are essential for
promoting wars of economic conquest, where people must be
persuaded that certain foreign leaders are Bad People who must be
hated and destroyed.

As for removing the promised rewards of full compliance with
illegitimate authority, that is a self-solving problem if one
waits long enough.  Right now in the former Western Democracies,
those rewards are being removed by the ruling class, via wholesale
looting of national economies at the fastest pace that will not
cause them to immediately collapse.

This looting is necessary to sustain the exponential growth of
corporate enterprise, which is necessary to its own survival and
to the financial ambitions of our billionaires:  The exponential
growth of the global industrial economy has reached hard limits
imposed by geophysics; the only way to keep our billionaires'
portfolios growing is redistribution of wealth from the poor and
middle classes to the very rich.

>> This creates a growth market for populist political agitators
>> - a market that opponents and supporters of authoritarian
>> rule are already competing to capture.
> What do you mean by "this"?  I cannot comprehend this
> sentence.

What I mean by "this" requires the context of the paragraph the
sentence above has been removed from:  "This" is the growing gap
between rewards promised and rewards delivered, in return for
committed compliance with the demands of illegitimate authority.

>> Politics is about power:  Who has it, who doesn't, and how
>> these groups interact.  The object of political activity is
>> to obtain and exercise power, toward whatever ends one
>> chooses.  Political
> That might be your idea.

You might say that I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.

> Politics is a little about power, but more about authority - 
> exercising authority in the context of a shared common delusion
> of "democracy" or whatever the regime of the day is spouting to
> its sheep!

Power creates authority.  Authority is the exercise of expressly
defined power.

> And Milgram showed us definitively that most people are sheep
> who will submit to any and every external authority firmly put
> to them (eg verbally), right up to and including the point at
> which that sheep will be applying deadly force to another
> "fellow sheep".
>> models and strategies that actually work in this context are 
>> "correct" while those that do not work are "incorrect."
> What do you mean by "work"?

Something "works" when it has the desired effect in practical

> Note to yourself - my definition of "works" may be different to
> yours. These generalisms slow the conversation down.

I'm a think I wandered into Monty Python's Argument Clinic.  The
best I can hope for is to avoid 'being hit in the head lessons.'

>> There is a time and place for everything,
> Like ritual human sacrifice?

I hate to say it, but yes.  Example:


Bear in mind that she was a volunteer.  She could have stood down
at any moment.

>> but rarely a time when elitism, or driving wedges between
>> groups who have political enemies in common with oneself, is
>> "correct" in a functional sense.
> So your position is that Milgram, by doing his experiment, and 
> empirically showing us that humans are despotically submissive
> sheep, is fundamentally being elitist?
> Or pointing out Milgrim's result is elitist?
> Or warning that a huge percentage of humans are despotically 
> submissive is elitist?

My position is that holding oneself to be inherently superior to
most of the human race is elitist.

> Or that this mass debate you're engaging in is your hissy fit
> over the term "sheep" to describe humans? Humans as
> demonstrated to a shocking degree by Milgram's experiments? In
> that case, the term sheep is seriously understated!

If you refer to my first post in this thread, you won't find a
hissy fit.  You will find a simple statement about my dislike for
the term 'sheeple'.

> How about this then eh:

Ooh, I'm gonna get it now!  :D

> Humans are breathing, eating, sleeping and shitting (BESS)
> drones, easily caused to submit their wills to comply with
> external commands and to do absolutely despotic acts; witness
> Milgram, witness Nuremberg trials.
> Humans, the BESS drones man, just the BESS!
> Better?

Sure, as long as we are clear that the entity making that
statement is a human.  Personally, I imagine that humans in
general, and you in particular, are much more than that.


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