Also, I’m Annoying

I’ve been thinking about why my views tend to get such strong reactions from people. I’m generally polite and good-tempered with the people I meet, I’m not a Holocaust denier or 9/11 truther, I’m certainly no anarchist or anything of that ilk, I have nothing in particular against anyone of any race, and when I’m in someone else’s forum I try as much as possible to word things in an exact and polite way. So why does everyone, on both sides of the (American, at least) political aisle tend to end up angry beyond belief at the end of any long conversation with me on the topic of politics?

If I had to guess, it’s because I question, not just foundational political assumptions, but the foundational assumptions of people’s fundamental belief systems. I’m essentially telling people that not only are they wrong on this topic, they’re wrong about everything; they’re basically trapped in the Matrix. And no matter how nicely you word it, or how carefully you argue it, you are essentially calling someone else utterly ignorant or oblivious of the world around them. No wonder they get insulted.

And it’s more than that. I question the foundational assumptions behind our liberal government, namely, equality and fraternity as political ends in and of themselves. People have had it beat into their heads, have been utterly convinced, that denying those two things basically makes you Hitler, somebody left with no good argument against something like the Holocaust, or even – as has been leveled at me – a “slave in spirit”, a lesser man, a person who wishes that all of us would just be good little slaves to our cruel tyrant overlords. Supposedly, this is the logical endpoint of my beliefs. Given that, a certain zeal is to be expected from people who disagree with me, because obviously anybody making the sort of arguments I am must be evil.

The melting pot discussion is a pretty good example of what I’m talking about. I use Italians as my go-to example when talking about this because I’m descended from Italians and that makes it harder to level “Well if it doesn’t apply to YOU…” objections at me. But nevertheless, I am theoretically on the same side as people who think that, say, Irish shouldn’t have been let into the country (I have done next to no research on this and have no opinion on it, but I don’t think there’s a problem in PRINCIPLE banning the Irish from becoming citizens). People with Irish ancestors, who might have fought in wars, who tried to raise their children to be good Americans, are going to react to this opinion with anger, fair or unfair. It’s naive to think that you won’t get that reaction.

On the previous thread Cane Caldo said this to me:

On Wright: Some people don’t argue in good faith. His mischaracterizations of others’ comments are so frequent, and so gross, that I am convinced that he can’t. Perhaps that deficiency gives an earnestness to the characters in his books.

First, if you go through Mr. Wright’s comments you’ll find it surprisingly difficult to find something that looks like an outright lie directed at a specific person; at best you’ll find him making blanket statements about broad movements that are unfair, or debatable comments about history. But besides that, you need to remember that – as he basically admitted after the Big Monarchy Rumble from a few months ago – I’m the sort of guy probably a good 90% of Americans have never dealt with before. My views are so utterly alien to most of American society that I think his reactions to me or views like mine being so off-base is perfectly realistic. I’m a new breed, not just to him, but to MOST people.

And it’s worth noting that I will have this discussion on Wright’s blog, but I won’t have any sort of similar discussion on Vox Day’s. Right now it looks as if I’m siding with Vox over Wright, and indeed I am (at least in broad strokes) on the very specific issue of America’s status as a melting pot/proposition nation. But Vox’s alt-right views also lean heavily on the idea of liberty as a foundational principle of government and free speech as an important aspect of American society. I reject both of those things completely. How do you think that discussion would end? With hugs all around and a pat on the back? Me neither.

So I guess the answer to the question is threefold:

  1. I represent a view that is hostile to everybody else’s in contemporary America
  2. I press the point when it’s probably a better idea for me to back off
  3. I can be a real dick

So I really shouldn’t be surprised anymore when I manage to royally piss off somebody else I respect.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Also, I’m Annoying

  1. dpmonahan says:

    People raised in the Catholic liberal-arts tradition like to argue, it is a kind of sport for them. They have this sort of cold rationality about them so don’t take an argument as personally as other people.
    That makes them dicks.

  2. Crude says:

    People have had it beat into their heads, have been utterly convinced, that denying those two things basically makes you Hitler, somebody left with no good argument against something like the Holocaust, or even – as has been leveled at me – a “slave in spirit”, a lesser man, a person who wishes that all of us would just be good little slaves to our cruel tyrant overlords.

    Keep in mind that for a lot of these people, their beliefs and their expression of them on this topic is one of their cornerstone defenses in a world that is generally hostile to them as well.

    The people you argue with lately generally aren’t establishment scions, parroting party boilerplate. They’re people who have endured quite a lot of shit, been accused of racism and hatred and this and that. And in part as a result of that, they have fashioned themselves a network of beliefs and statements and postures and narratives that are in part meant to insulate them from those attacks. It’s meant to keep them intellectually alive, and as healthy as possible, and give them some firm ground to stand on while they counter-attack.

    That’s something to remember. You’re annoying? Everyone saying something interesting and controversial is annoying. But I think a more meaningful difference between yourself and others may be – and you know better than I – that when someone calls you a bad name or this or that insult, it rolls off you with greater ease. Someone calling you a racist, a fascist, a sexist, a heretic, a this or that, doesn’t seem to give you much pause or self-doubt in and of itself. They better have an argument, a good one, illustrating a real wrong on your part – the accusation alone doesn’t mean much.

    To others, that shakes them. Those words cut, and worry. And they have constructed a worldview in part where it is emphasized that they are absolutely NOT that thing they are being accused of. Defeating that accusation is important, even centrally important, to the point where other things are a little more secondary.

    Then along you come along and find some holes in their shield? That thing that keeps the Bad Words out, that they’ve invested a whole lot of time into building and perfecting and which actually has, to some degree, kept them nice and insulated? Yeah, most are not going to appreciate that too much. You’re, by and large, an ally – you’re supposed to admire and compliment their shield on how well it’s made and how thoroughly it insulates them from attacks. Not tell them that it’s flawed.

    It’s not just your views which may be alien to most people, but your attitude. It’s no coincidence that Vox Day’s battlecry on these topics is ‘We Don’t Care’. That’s a theme he goes back to over and over, and there’s a good reason for it – it’s one of the things he gets very, very right.

    • But I think a more meaningful difference between yourself and others may be – and you know better than I – that when someone calls you a bad name or this or that insult, it rolls off you with greater ease. Someone calling you a racist, a fascist, a sexist, a heretic, a this or that, doesn’t seem to give you much pause or self-doubt in and of itself. They better have an argument, a good one, illustrating a real wrong on your part – the accusation alone doesn’t mean much.

      It’s eyeroll-worthy for me at this point, or if I respect the guy enough annoying. But it took me some time to get like this.

      The thing is, as you said, folks like John C. Wright, Tom Simon, and Vox Day are basically allies. But unlike some people, even being insulted and spat upon by allies is no longer really enough to discourage me. Yes, yes, you’re very insulted. Let’s move on.

      • Crude says:

        The thing is, as you said, folks like John C. Wright, Tom Simon, and Vox Day are basically allies.

        I can relate. Case in point, McGrew. Who I’ll give due to when she’s right (SCP) even if I go off on her failures (Trump, etc).

        What does irritate me is when their attacks are suspiciously leftist-like, which isn’t a Vox thing, but is at times a Wright and company thing.

      • Mcgrew is the one person I’ve lost basically all respect for. After her comments on abortion I’m finding it very hard to take her seriously.

  3. Chad says:

    Welcome to my world.

    The other part is that people alien to liberal world views have often read and thought about it a great deal. When someone intuits that fact, and that you are going to be an immovable rock unless they overthrow great authorities of thought withing our Christendom, they start flailing around for a life preserver.

    Sadly, few realize they had previously been drowning, and you’re the one offering the preserver to begin with.

  4. “as he basically admitted after the Big Monarchy Rumble from a few months ago”

    I remember that, good times, it reverberated across the internet. I respect and admire Wright even though his ignorance and frankly, wrong, opinions on that matter (Slaves in Spirit, nothing was more riseable or offensive to honour than such a slander) resulted in a hilarious debacle and his astonishment at such a ferocious reaction was amusing and informative, though not neccessarily surprising. I’ve been getting similar reactions for years now from people all over the West.

    As to your opinions, while I do not agree with all of them, I can certain sympathise with them and where you are coming from. Indeed, I have been spending these past few months studying the alt right because I find the movement fascinating, everything from Vox Day to listening to TRS podcasts to get the perspective of the fascists, to occasionally reading the Manosphere which is undergoing a profound and interesting transformation and a pivot towards a kind of quasi traditionalism.

    Take the melting pot debacle. I am of the opinion integration and assimilation is possible, the History of Ireland, for example, has always been one of assimilating its own conquerors, the Vikings and the Normans, with only difference in Religion ever proving an obstacle to such. (which means the Muslims are going to be impossible to assimilate, but they’ll be in for a rude shock once they start kicking off here like they do in Europe) and America is an interesting case regarding melting pots. In short, I agree with almost nobody on the matter. Not the propositionists, not Vox Day and not Wright, at least not wholly.

    For example, I believe it is a stupid and bizarre stance to say, ban Irish from citizenship, but perfectly acceptable in principle to do so to literally any other race of people in Europe. Allow me to explain. How can it be, that from the beginning of America’s nationhood, it was primarily for the posterity of the Anglos, but not for the Irish, the Scots-Irish, or the Welsh? Was it just the northern colonies who were American, and Maryland was left, for basically being a Catholic colony founded by an Irishman? Or did it also exclude the Southern states which were awash with Scots-Irish? Who were the Americans with the rights of posterity? The Anglo Yankees and literally nobody else? To ban one race of people from the British isles from citizenship is as retarded as declaring only the Scots-Irish as having posterity and banning the Anglos. The logic doesnt follow for the nation. Or is it simply no celts may apply? Which is in retrospect, embarassing since only 17% of white Englishmen at home are of Saxon stock and almost all of the rest are the same base Brythonic celtic population thats been there since before the Romans who somehow failed to leave a genetic imprint thats detectable, with the same being true of the Vikings and the Normans, hell the Scottish and Irish have more viking blood in them. Which is why I disagree with Vox’s opinion based on the genetics, since most Anglos, prior to the flood of Germans in America, were of primary celtic genetics, distinguishing between could only really be made on grounds of culture and breeding, if genetics determined culture wholly and non-Anglos were incapable of understanding the English nature of the American government and its guiding principles, this wouldn’t follow.

    At the same time however, it is perfectly in their interest to ban all the Germans from citizenship until a few generations had passed. But whatever one’s opinion on it now, is besides the point. American whites are mixed to a hilarious degree and whats done is done. Wether or not the ban on non-whites and non-Christians was too broad and open 200 years ago is irrelevant, its the only possible and defensible stance now.

    • In retrospect, the whole monarchy thing bothered Wright FAR more than it bothered me, and it makes sense now. To John, it must have been like arguing with Hitler, trying to claim that just because Nazis want the Jews to leave doesn’t mean they hate them.

      When you connect the dots and realize that folks like John consider thoughts like mine literally dangerous and even evil, the anger becomes more understandable. I see the matter from a wholly different perspective – Nazism was a reaction to the utter failure of liberalism, classical or otherwise.

      The alt-right is another reaction to that, though less dangerous. Like Nazism, the alt-right recognizes that the previous prevailing philosophy failed but DOESN’T recognize that the philosophy was liberalism, though it comes closer by rejecting equality. This makes them interesting if for no other reason than as a sociological study.

  5. Cane Caldo says:

    First, if you go through Mr. Wright’s comments you’ll find it surprisingly difficult to find something that looks like an outright lie directed at a specific person; at best you’ll find him making blanket statements about broad movements that are unfair, or debatable comments about history. But besides that, you need to remember that – as he basically admitted after the Big Monarchy Rumble from a few months ago – I’m the sort of guy probably a good 90% of Americans have never dealt with before. My views are so utterly alien to most of American society that I think his reactions to me or views like mine being so off-base is perfectly realistic. I’m a new breed, not just to him, but to MOST people.

    IOW: He responds to caricatures in his own mind instead of what you actually wrote. That is a type of argument in bad faith. I’ve read his comments, and yours, and others. Everyone is writing in English using common words. I find no excuse for his fictionalization of others and wish he would limit it to his books.

  6. A lot of human communication is non verbal.

    Online interaction completely lacks this.

    That’s it.

    Without any clues as to the emotions behind the words we all will general read onto text the mood we are in at the time of reading. Now imagine how moods are in disagreements. The rest, as they say, follows.

    • Very true.

      Glad to see you here. Sorry how I treated you at our last big interaction (the thread about Roosh). That was on me; I was frustrated at people’s responses to me, but that wasn’t your fault, and how I responded to it I can only blame on myself.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s