Anthony Fauci’s Noble Lying

Before reading this blog, I recommend you read this July 21 blog, On Herd Immunity, Establishment Disinformation, and Gain-of-Function. There you will learn about several recent development that inform the present blog. I have written many things on the coronavirus, but one other entry bears considerable interest in light of the present blog, Some Virus Did Something. There, in the early days of the pandemic, I prepare readers to detect the presence of the corporate state project to amass wealth and subdue popular uprising against technocratic control by exposing the Orwellian function of war metaphors. In conjunction with the present entry, that April 2020 blog is useful in showing how propaganda tactics evolve. Now, there is a vaccine and the unvaccinated and those who criticize vaccines have become the enemies. But with vaccines failing to live up to their hype, and, moreover, the growing list of their negative effects—Bell’s palsy, clotting blood, Grave’s disease, Guillain-Barré syndrome, myocarditis, pericarditis, and even death—the narrative is evolving again.

The Associated Press headline, “Fauci says US headed in ‘wrong direction’ on coronavirus,” provides an opportunity to make an important observation: The US is indeed headed in the wrong direction on coronavirus and Fauci is the tip of the spear. The truth of the matter is that, from the git-go, world leaders, governed by corporate power and not the people who suffer that power, took the wrong path. We should never have locked down. We should never have masked up. We should never have suppressed therapeutics. We should never have put our hopes in a vaccine. We should have never hesitated for a second to investigate China and the Wuhan Lab, or Dr. Anthony Fauci and the US National Institute of Health and Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Challenges to these errors haven’t gone away (they are growing) and the establishment, faced with mounting evidence that the vaccines don’t work, is desperately trying to save the project.

We are in the witch hunt phase of the moral panic (see my Priming for Control: How Mass Psychology is Used to Transform Lifeworlds; Panic and Paranoia Deaden Humanity and Sabotage Its Future; A Moral Panic. A Year Later). The Seattle Times goes after physician Joesph Mercola, whom the dark money funded pro-industry outlet Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) declared in their report public enemy number one (the White House is using the CCDH hit piece to persecute experts who challenge the industry narrative). The Seattle Times accuses Mercola of saying that the injections do not prevent infections. Nor do they provide immunity or stop transmission of the disease, he is accused of saying. The Seattle Times tells us that these “assertions were easily disprovable.” Only we are now being told that the injections do not in fact prevent infections, provide immunity or stop transmission of the disease. Apparently the Seattle Times didn’t get the memo that the propaganda message has shifted. The propaganda machine is vast and, however nimble it can be, there are still true believer outfits that fall behind.

The new message is to pretend that Big Pharma was saying these things all along. Therefore, those who tell you tell you things are trying to make something out of nothing. The Seattle Times also goes after Mercola for saying that the shots “alter your genetic coding, turning you into a viral protein factory that has no off-switch.” But that’s what mRNA technology does. They’ve been saying this all along, too. The inventor of mRNA platform himself, Dr. Robert Malone, is warning people that these vaccines were rushed and the side effects that are making people very sick and even killing them were unavoidable. He hopes next generation product addresses the problem of the toxic effects of the spike protein the mRNA technology teaches your cells to produce. But in the meantime, there is no good reason for most people to get the shot. Indeed, there are a lot of good reasons for not taking the shot. Malone tells us that, for sure, these shots will not get us to herd immunity because the shots are not designed to do that. No T-cell memory. No antibodies. Again, the shots were only designed to train cells to produce a toxic protein in the hope that this would reduce the risk of severe illness from COVID-19. But the shots don’t do that, either. The Seattle Times, by treating the telling of a simple fact as the work of somebody who wants his audience to believe a terrible thing about the Pfizer shot telegraphs the terrible thing about the Pfizer shot: that it will “alter your genetic coding, turning you into a viral protein factory that has no off-switch.”

As I reported in my previous blog on this topic, after terrifying the public into getting injected with the experimental mRNA technology, so-called “breakthrough cases” started popping up everywhere. As I explained there, this is the rationalization covering cases where a fully vaccinated person is infected with the virus. We now know that breakthrough cases are hardly rare. CNBC is compelled to report that “Israel says Pfizer Covid vaccine is just 39% effective as delta spreads,” while hastening to add “but still prevents severe illness.” We were told that these vaccines were over 90 percent effective against the virus (Israel led the cheerleading with that statistic, you may recall), leading the public to believe that the vaccine was highly effective in conferring immunity, and that therefore they could go about their daily lives again (now states are preparing to mask up the vaccinated).

CNBC assures its readers, the vaccine “still works very well in preventing people from getting seriously sick, demonstrating 88% effectiveness against hospitalization and 91% effectiveness against severe illness, according to the Israeli data.” What CNBC fails to tell readers is that the vast majority of people who contract SARS-CoV-2 will also never develop serious illness nor be hospitalized. CNBC can leave out this important fact knowing that more than 40 percent of US progressives believe COVID-19 puts half of those who get in the hospital and a majority of British citizens and residence believe COVID-19 has killed ten percent of those who contracted the virus. This is lying by omission to a gullible audience. It’s shocking (not really) to learn that those who tell me to “believe in the science” can be counted among those possessing the same quality of mind progressives mock for believing in the devil (except many of the latter aren’t stepping up to participate in a reckless and sloppy mass experiment).

The public is now being told that no authorities ever claimed those who were vaccinated were immune from the disease or wouldn’t wind up in the hospital. According to Dr. Malone, the Pfizer and Moderna technology was never tested for efficacy to infection and transmission (the government told Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., there were never any studies on human safety at all). These shots were only designed to reduce the severity of illness—they believed. Moreover, the technology was rushed to market. They knew that the spike protein the recipient’s cells are taught to manufacture is a toxin (which is why the technology is sickening so many people) but they jabbed people with it anyway and have now pushed the experiment down to twelve-year-olds. They have so manipulated the public that progressive moms are frantically asking when their infants can be jabbed. And please don’t forget that the misleading messaging surrounding vaccines has made those who received the shot believe they are immune when, in fact, not only risk contracting the virus, but they risk spreading it to others. Those who cannot get vaccinated (for example, those who suffer from autoimmune disorders) are thus put at risk by vaccinated people who think they can’t catch and transmit the virus. Don’t kill grandma!

Skyhorse publishing (the same publisher that published a new edition of The Communist Manifesto with yours truly penning the Introduction), is out with a book by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. The Real Anthony Fauci: Bill Gates, Big Pharma, and the Global War on Democracy and Public Health. Kennedy knows as much on this subject as anybody and, crucially, operates from a critical populist framework that puts the interests of people ahead corporate profits. Our democracy and our freedom depend on people understanding the problem of regulatory capture, technocracy, and corporate governance, and acting on this understanding.

From The Real Anthony Fauci web page:

When the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since November 1984 and the leading architect of “agency capture”—the corporate seizure of America’s public health agencies by the pharmaceutical industry—happen to be the same man, conflicts of interest arise. Wearing both hats, Dr. Anthony Stephen Fauci, tasked with managing the COVID-19 pandemic in the US, peddled and back-pedaled his prescriptions as Pharma profits and bureaucratic powers grew and public health waned.

Working in tandem with his long-term partner, billionaire Bill Gates, to corral Americans toward a single vaccine solution to COVID, Dr. Fauci committed zero dollars to studying or promoting early treatment with various drug combinations that could dramatically reduce deaths and hospitalizations. Meanwhile, in an assault on our First Amendment guarantee of free speech, Dr. Fauci’s Silicon Valley and media allies dutifully censored criticism of his policies on mainstream social media and collaborated to muzzle any medical information about therapies and treatments that might end the pandemic and compete with vaccines.

After effectively abolishing the First Amendment right to free speech, Dr. Fauci subverted our Seventh Amendment rights to jury trials by arranging to shield reckless and negligent pharmaceutical corporations from liability for injuries from any COVID countermeasures, including vaccines. His lockdowns targeted First Amendment religious freedom by closing churches—while keeping liquor stores open as “essential businesses”—and abolishing century-old religious exemptions to vaccination. Dr. Fauci’s enforced quarantine trampled the Constitutional rights of assembly, of association, and to petition the government, and our Fifth Amendment protection against uncompensated taking of private property. His arbitrary mask and lockdown diktats, without public hearings or rulemaking, strangled our Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment due process guarantees. His tracking and tracing initiatives bulldozed Constitutional rights to privacy and travel, and our Fourth Amendment protections against warrantless searches and seizures.

Finally, readers will see how Dr. Fauci and Bill Gates, asserting biosecurity rationales, worked together to finance and promote the very gain-of-function experiments in Wuhan that may have released the COVID-19 pathogen.

We have arrived at what Sheldon Wolin, in his terrific book Democracy, Inc., calls “inverted totalitarianism.” You must share this information. Please tell your family, friends, and neighbors about this book and about my blog. Tell them about Dr. Robert Malone, the inventor of mRNA platform (these faux-vaccines that are sickening people). He appeared on Steve Bannon’s War Room Pandemic yesterday (with Kennedy) and blew everyone away. I am sharing the podcast below. People need to know. Don’t believe the corporate propagandists. Follow the science. Follow the money.

Episode 1,120 – Dirty Dozen: The 12 Most Dangerous People in America Pt. 1
Episode 1,121 – Dirty Dozen: The 12 Most Dangerous People in America Pt. 2

Finally, have you seen this meme? I could not have designed a better illustration of elitism (read my The Cynical Appeal to Expertise for an analysis of this style of argument).

The fallacious character of the argument is striking. It’s textbook appeal to authority. It’s also misinformation. It’s hardly a “couple of discredited doctors” pointing out the problems with the vaccine and public policy about COVID-19. It’s doctors and scientists who are not driving the corporate gravy train. And that is a lot of experts. But, yeah, so expertise matters. And that is why you should come to Freedom and Reason and read my blog. I am a scientist with a PhD who understands demographics, epidemiology, and statistical inference. So when you question whether I should write about COVID-19 as somebody who is not an expert on infectious diseases, please know that, chances are, you are hardly in a position to really know who I should listen to. You said so yourself.

Somebody already conveyed the spirit of this post in a fraction of the words. Social influencer, Ethan Siegel, in a discussion about why we should just trust Fauci and the CDC put it like this, “Don’t Even Think About It Bro.” Now that’s a meme. What is so sad about all this is how many people will read the post and think, “Yep, that’s me, Average Citizen. I don’t know jack shit. I don’t even have the capacity to figure out shit for myself. Please tell me what to do.” I call that cerebral hygiene. This is the religion of the progressive: scientism. It leaves you with just believing the authority who agrees with you. That is what confirmation bias really looks like. Like all those people who for decades couldn’t believe the Catholic Church—and the congregants, politicians, and police who enabled the church—would lie about pedophile priests. Consider how massive that conspiracy was.

I will leave you with a few memes. A little heaven and hell:

The Michigan Kidnapping Plot and January 6—Is There a Connection?

On October 11, 2020, in a blog titled Antifa and the Boogaloos: Condemning Political Violence Left and Right, I included reporting on the Michigan kidnapping plot. Recall that the Justice Department alleges that, over several months in 2020, members of the extremist group Wolverine Watchmen plotted and trained to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer and put her on trial for tyranny. Authorities arrested the plotters before any part of the plan was executed. The men also discussed storming the Michigan capitol and taking politicians hostage. This is an important detail.

It is now being reported that the FBI allegedly used at least twelve informants in the Michigan kidnapping case, associates of that agency thus making up a majority of the plotters. Defense attorneys are crying entrapment, arguing that the FBI “induced or persuaded” the defendants to go along with kidnapping plot. If you are familiar with how the FBI works, it is not surprising that the plot was organized by or at least with the help of the FBI. The agency justifies developing apparent inchoate offenses to ostensibly disrupt the plans of domestic terrorists. There are hundreds of instances of the FBI doing this. The agency sees it as its job to have ears to the rails to hear approaching trains. (One may reasonably ask whether the practice gives the agency cover to run operations against political opponents.)

The mob at the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021.

I am not here to interrogate the Michigan case. Rather the case compels me to ask a more immediate question: How is it possible that, only a few months before the events of January 6, when a mob that included members of right wing extremists breeched the US Capitol Building at the nation’s Capitol (“A republic, if you can keep it”; A Peaceful Transition of Political Power), the very agency involved in hatching a plot that included plans to storm the Michigan capitol could be caught so flatfooted? No ears to rails for this train? Are we seriously expected to believe that January 6 was an intelligence failure?

At most, only one-tenth of Capitol arrestees can be classified as supporters of militias or militia-like groups such as the Oath Keepers and Three Percenters (“A New Kind of American Radicalism”: The Campaign to Portray Ordinary America as Deviant and Dangerous). Presumably Nancy Pelosi’s commission will show that a handful of organized extremists instigated the breaching of the Capitol building. However, especially considering her rejection of Jim Jordan to sit on the commission (an action prompting House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to pull all of his choices from the panel), one question that probably won’t be addressed is how many FBI informants were involved in the planning of the events on January 6. Not only would the FBI face charges of incompetence and illegitimacy as an intelligence organization for failing to thwart the breech that day, but they might also be implicated in it.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, decided to create a select committee to investigate the January 6 riot Senate Republicans filibustered a bipartisan bill to set up an outside commission.

What is the point of Pelosi’s commission? I grasp the importance of January 6 to the propaganda campaign to paint populist-nationalism as the greatest threat to American and marginalize those who question Joe Biden’s legitimacy as president. This is what was behind the Democrat’s (second) failed attempt to convict Donald Trump. Will the committee, in the context of a spectacle portraying January 6 as a Trump-inspired insurrection, cover up FBI involvement in it? (See also Cancelling Half the Nation: Progressives Reach for One-Party Rule.)

Far from attempting to preventing certification of the election, the riot instead stopped the process of interrogating state certifications, a process that would have returned the matter to the states, where there is clear evidence of election irregularities (see the Navarro Report). Is it not obvious that the establishment needs to raise the profile of a particular narrative of January 6 to distract from the November 3 movement to get to the bottom of the 2020 election? November 3 is what the Congress should be investigating. Where is that commission?

Will we learn the truth of Ashli Babbitt’s death at the hands of a gunman inside the Capitol? Who killed Babbitt? (To learn more about Babbitt see (“A republic, if you can keep it”; A Peaceful Transition of Political Power.) Will we learn the truth about what happened to Officer Brian Sicknick? We know that he was not killed on January 6. How did he die?

Update (July 24, 2021): On Substack, Glenn Greenwald echoes my points in his own report published today: FBI Using the Same Fear Tactic From the First War on Terror: Orchestrating its Own Terrorism Plots. His report provides much greater detail. Must see stuff.

On Herd Immunity, Establishment Disinformation, and Gain-of-Function

Sorry to wax all scientific but it is a well known fact that herd immunity is not only achieved through vaccination; it is also achieved by getting the virus. Indeed, for most of human history, this was how immunity worked (it still works this way). When the technocracy tells you that—oh, horror—less than half the population is fully vaccinated, what its authorized experts aren’t telling you is that a large proportion of the population has immunity from having had the virus. If you look at the data trends, you cannot miss the fact that case numbers peaked on January 8 and began declining drastically at a moment when zero percent of the population was fully vaccinated and only two percent had had at least on dose. Remember, it takes weeks for immunity to set it. In other words, the same effect would have been achieved without the vaccine.

The way the experiment was rolled out, and this is a problem going forward, a confound was introduced in that many of those who have had the virus also got vaccinated. How did this happen? A textbook case of misinformation that somehow social media let through the filter: because public health authorities effectively changed the definition of herd immunity, they led the public to believe that, whether people had had this virus or not, they needed to be vaccinated. The propaganda push led to millions of people being unnecessarily injected with experimental corporate products. This push was facilitated by workplace rules and social coercion.

If we really wanted to get a sense of where we were on herd immunity, then we would take all those who had a positive test, separate out those who were vaccinated after infection, and then perform antibodies tests on those who have neither been vaccinated nor had a positive test. A representative national sample of willing participants would suffice to draw the inference. The best time to have done this was last year. But since we didn’t do that, the best time to do this is right now. With emergency use authorization, we are (in many cases involuntarily or without informed consent) participating in arguably the sloppiest experiment ever conducted.

All this presumes the technocrats actually care about science rather than corporate profits. Concern for science may have been the case when we had a functioning democratic republic (although corporate power has always been a complicating factor). But in the era of regulatory capture and corporate governance, the public can go fuck itself. And if citizens take issue with that, they can expect censorship, deplatforming, discipline, and ridicule.

* * *

Mika Brzezinski of the Morning Joe program told her audience that the unvaccinated are getting the vaccinated sick. You may have thought the reason to get vaccinated was so you won’t get sick. Think again. Now you are being told that the vaccinated can get sick. Vaccine defenders say that these are only a small number of “breakthrough cases.” But there are quite a lot of stories about vaccinated people getting sick. Vaccine defenders will stipulate with this claim: but they don’t wind up in the hospital. Actually, they do.

NBC Chicago affiliate recently carried the headline “‘Really Surprising’: Vaccinated Chicago Man Who Got COVID After Vacation Warns Others.” The story begins with Robert Coy, a young man who had had been fully vaccinated for months and decided to go on vacation with friends. “It was one of those things where, you know, we’ve been going out to places now at that point, maybe for a week or two, but we were able to take off masks, rejoin society, the CDC guidelines kept getting looser and looser and looser.” Coy and his friends vacationed in Provincetown, Massachusetts, where, it seems, they acquired COVID-19.

Provincetown officials confirmed recent spike in cases, particularly involving fully vaccinated people. Town Manager Alex Morse wrote on Facebook Sunday: “Overwhelmingly, the affected individuals have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19.” Morse tried to save the narrative with: “The moderate intensity of symptoms indicates that the vaccines are working as predicted.” But this is true even for the unvaccinated. COVID-19 is mild to moderate in the vast majority of people who get it, regardless of whether they have been vaccinated.

“It’s like a really nasty cold,” Coy said. “You’ll get a bit of a cough, maybe, and you just feel tired and it’s not fun, but I will say it’s definitely a lot less severe than I would have expected.” Why would he have expected anything different? As I reported in “‘Whatever that number is’: Vaccine Hesitancy, Common Sense, and Stigmatizing Christians,” a poll found that 41 percent of Democrats believed that half or more of those infected with SARS-CoV-2 would be hospitalized. Like tens of millions, Coy was misled. The NBC-Chicago story fails to correct the record. NBC-Chicago cannot be ignorant of the fact that the vast majority of people are either asymptomatic or experience mild cold symptoms, fully recover, and acquire lasting immunity.

NBC’s national bureau is reporting that fully vaccinated can become seriously ill and hospitalized. Like the Chicago bureau, they try to save the narrative with such claims as “Fully vaccinated people who become seriously ill following breakthrough infections tend be older or have serious medical conditions.” But, again, this is true for the unvaccinated. Healthy children and adults almost never developed serious medical conditions after acquiring the virus. The public would know this had those voices telling the truth about this virus had not been censored or deplatformed.

If the vaccine were as effective as the authorized experts claim (I will stipulate that Pfizer and Moderna’s mRNA concoctions are vaccines for the sake of the point), then you would expect a young man to not experience these symptoms. Even unvaccinated, he would likely not have experienced these symptoms (yet he and his young friends—all vaccinated—experienced the same symptoms). What’s the difference, then? Had he not had the vaccine, that would have been his inoculation and he would not have risked blood clots, Guillain-Barré syndrome, myocarditis, pericarditis, and the myriad of other health problems (including death) associated with the vaccines. To be sure, there are risks from the virus. But you may or may not get the virus. If you get the vaccine, then for sure you expose yourself to these risks.

Remember, these gene therapies and vaccines are being administered despite not enjoying FDA approval because the pharmaceutical companies who invented them having been given emergency use authorization to distribute them. We might grant that there is a need for emergency use authorization for the very old and those with comorbidities that put them at risk for serious illness. But there is no emergency for those who do not slot into these categories. Yet they have pushed injections of these products down to 12-year-olds. They have plans before the fall is out to push the vaccines down to 6-month-olds. There is no emergency among these populations.

Does getting influenza or the flu vaccine mean you never get the flu again? No. You get the flu even with a vaccine developed for the strain of influenza that makes you sick. Cases of COVID-19 are rising again. Why? Because the vaccines don’t work? It could be that like all RNA virus, SARS-CoV-2 mutates (although the mutations do not appear to change the virus into something the immune system wouldn’t recognized). Welcome to the world you have always known. By all means let’s make the known world strange. For what purpose? So the media can announce a “pandemic of the unvaccinated.” It sounds to me as if the efficacy of the vaccine is in question (or that it is not really a vaccine) and the vaccine pushers are demonizing the unvaccinated to distract the public from that fact—and shame the unvaccinated into taking these shots.

Let’s think through this logically. Assume the vaccinated can carry the virus. It is a safe assumption since clearly they can get sick. Some are even hospitalized. If the vaccinated can carry the virus, then they can infect other vaccinated people—and obviously unvaccinated people (unless, to a lesser extend, since they have had the virus, which confers immunity). This means that the vaccinated are getting the vaccinated and unvaccinated sick. A room full of vaccinated people is not a safe room to be in because any one or more of them could be carrying the virus—and any one of them can acquire the virus and get sick. Why are the vaccinated allowed to go around without masks if they can carry and transmit and contract the virus? Isn’t the vaccine really conferring a false sense of security rather than immunity to the coronavirus? I am not advocating masks. I am calling out bullshit.

* * *

Facebook didn’t appreciate being called a killer. Joe Biden clarified his remarks, saying he intended to shock Facebook and other social media platforms into censoring posts that contradicted the establishment narrative. He was, he insisted, calling on Big Tech to act. What does it mean for Big Tech to act? The corporations that control the means of communication should censor and deplatform those who post criticisms of corporate and government claims and practices. As open discourse is the lifeblood of democracy, it means that Biden is deeply illiberal in his attitudes towards freedom of thought and speech. In other words, the United States is governed by an authoritarian leader who was likely installed (of course, Biden isn’t governing anything, including his own mind).

In his rhetoric, Biden refers to a dozen people who are spreading disinformation about COVID-19 and the vaccine. Here is his source: The Disinformation Dozen: Why platforms must act on twelve leading online anti-vaxxers. The March 2021 report is published by the London-based propaganda outfit the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH). Number one and two on the list are Joseph Mercola and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. You can read CCDH’s About page to get a sense of who they are. Note that the CCDH brags about employing behavioral psychologists to develop their manipulative messaging. Imran Ahmed is the founding CEO of the CCDH. His site elevates him to the status of “a recognized authority on the social and psychological dynamics of social media.” Recognized by who? I outrank him (I have a MA and a PhD). I don’t recognize him as an authority.

* * *

Watch the video above to see US Senator Rand Paul dismantle Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) with the National Institutions of Health (NIH). Fauci denies lying to Congress in previous testimony in which he dismissed NIH funding of gain-of-function research, but Senator Paul references the following article, “Discovery of a rich gene pool of bat SARS-related coronaviruses provides new insights into the origin of SARS coronavirus,” in which efforts to produce “chimeric” coronaviruses, the fruit of gain-of-function experiments. The paper lists the NIH as a source of funding.

Gain-of-function research involves altering a pathogen to make it more transmissible in order to better predict emerging diseases. What would make a pathogen more transmissible in nature? Random mutation. Random means that something happens without method or conscious decision. So how does a methodical and conscious decision anticipate natural random mutation? 

What are the odds of scientists predicting a natural random mutation? For example, in the creation of the Harvard mouse, what are the odds that a mouse with that genome would have appeared in nature? The answer is probably effectively zero. Does aybody really believe that something like SARS-CoV-2 would appear in nature after having been invented by researchers? Why would it need to? It has already been invented.  Do they think we’re stupid? Yes. And a lot of us are. 

Gain-of-function research isn’t to better predict emerging disease. People, they’re lying to us. Gain-of-function research is a method of inventing and manufacturing pathogens that are more transmissible so that the pathogens can be patented, giving corporations exclusive rights to products surrounding the pathogen which generate profits. For example, since the RNA sequence used to manufacture the virus would be known to vaccine manufacturers, inventing a pathogen allows for the rapid production of a vaccine. Of course, gain-of-function could also be bioweapons research. It functioned as both in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Imagine if the fruits of gain-of-function research were released and spread around the world and in less than a year vaccines appeared (while effective therapeutic were suppressed). You don’t have to imagine it. It appears to have happened. See, there is a trick to corporate profit. Corporations don’t wait for demand to form around an organic need for a response or solution to a problem. Corporations create the need by creating a problem.

The Postmodern Condition: Human Nature, Tribalism, and the Future of the Nation-State

Globalization and its attendant political-ideological system of globalism are disintegrating populations heretofore organized by nation-states to the detriment of individual freedom and human rights. Globalism seeks denationalization, promoting balkanization by encouraging the creation and restoration of subnational identity groups. Globalism is the antithesis of nationalism. Humanity ignores the problem of globalization at its peril.

Under the influence of globalism, there is a shift in emphasis from economics and individualism to ethnicity, gender, race, religion, and the myriad of other ways to divide populations. Globalist are opposed to assimilation, borders, and a common culture and language because they stand in opposition to individuals and the structures necessary to preserve and protect personal sovereignty and advance individual interests. Condemning assimilation and national culture as chauvinist and racist, globalists demand the free flow of non-Western populations into Western countries. This is the postmodern condition.

Over the last few decades populist-nationalist sentiment has emerged and resistance to globalization is growing. We see with it reaction to the postmodernism that has corrupted the cultural and social institutions of the West. The rise of nationalism has fractured the Republican Party, pushing the Party of Lincoln back to its roots as a populist democratic-republican movement. Nationalist are standing up in open forums at city council and school board meetings and demanding public institutions quit such divisive teachings as critical race theory and the 1619 project.

When proponents of globalism and multiculturalism warn in response that nationalism is (just) another form of tribalism, they are either confessing to ignorance of nationalism or engaged in deceit. Civic nationalism, which is the form of nationalism practiced across the West, is the antithesis of tribalism; a nation based on civic virtue detribalizes populations by liberating individuals from their identity-based associations, reincorporating them into a greater juridical-political unit that regards them equally alongside their fellow citizens without respect to group identity. The secular nation-state provides individuals with a common language and a common law that incorporates persons into a greater whole, treating people as individuals rather than personifications of identity groups. The secular nation-state rescues people from the backwardness of primitive social relations.

The problem lies in our nature. Homo sapiens is an animal species. Humans are social animals. Social animals are tribal by nature. It is in the nature of social animals to seek out those who resemble them, to find affinity and feel safety in identity, even in the variation of a species. Tribal organization in human populations is the reflection of this natural tendency in social behavior. But tribal organization is not conducive to human progress. Human tribes, like all animal tribes, exist in a state of nature. In a state of nature, there is no social development, only the chaos of natural history. In a state of nature, or at least on the continuum closer to it, humans have difficulty in creating and sustaining civilization because potential is constrained and intergroup conflict is continual.

As societies detribalize, human potential becomes available to a greater population. Ideas and resources are accessible to the many, and common understanding and cooperation allow for the rapid transmission and adoption of forward-leaning ideas, where humans organize or are organized beyond the tribal level. Detribalization diminishes or eliminates intergroup antagonism and conflict, stabilizing social relations across large culture areas. As world history makes obvious, the most advanced societies are those that are the most effective at alienating the individual from his instinct to organize along tribal lines. Citizens exist in a more advanced state than subjects.

The extent to which a population is detribalized predicts progress. Detribalization is a process of liberating individuals from backwardness and reintegrating them into a common sociocultural structure, a unified legal and political framework, and a shared language. Defending the nation-state from the disintegrating force of globalism is desirable because it preserves those institutions that promote the individualism necessary for the development and perpetuation of advanced civilization.

Not all nations are created equal in this regard. Across the globe, there is uneven development in cultural, economic, and social systems. Not every nation and region is as advanced as other nations and regions. It is the West that most aggressively promotes the individualism necessary for rapid expansion of science, technology, and the humanist values of liberalism and secularism. This is why the West must be defended against woke ideology.

Woke ideology is an expression of globalist desire. With its identitarian politics, the woke seek to return human populations to tribes, to fracture national populations into identity groups based on, among other things, skin color. The woke tell a history without progress in order to deny the power of nationalism in advancing the common interests of human beings. As such, globalism and multiculturalism are regressive developments, elements of a countermovement against the Enlightenment. Social justice advocates encourage individuals to give themselves over to tribal instincts, to see themselves in terms of skin color and other stigma.

Globalization is the force that is undermining the ability to maintain national structures. We are seeing, across the world, the continuation or return of tribalism where the state and law are weak or insufficiently liberal and secular. Globalization is weakening the state and the law. Corporations, innately illiberal structures, are feeding intertribal conflict—both organically and by design. Corporate power is transforming capitalism into something different. It shifting the gears of social development in reverse. Transnationalization is a return to feudalism. The globalist desire is neofeudalist.

Establishment Myths About Race and Violence

The media makes it sound like blacks continually suffer violence at white hands. At times, it sounds like the lynching days of old (Agency and Motive in Lynching and Genocide). Black people can’t leave the house without fear of facing white supremacist violence. Black fathers dread “the talk” with their black sons.

All this has got to be terrifying to black children—to be told that white people are out to get them, that they aren’t safe around white people. Moreover, just as a belief that black poverty is caused by white racism may justify robbing a white-owned store, a young black man may find in his outsized perception of the white threat justification for perpetrating violence against white people.

But the white threat isn’t real. It is an establishment myth. A myth that puts the lie to the claim that blacks suffer under white supremacy. For why would the white establishment lie to make white people look bad?

One quarter of lethal civilian-cop interactions result in the death of a black suspect. You wouldn’t know that a minority of those killed by police are black listening to CNN. The fact is that most of those killed by the police are white. (Disappearing the White Victims of Lethal Police Violence.) Why don’t you know this?

The theory of systemic racism predicts that the white establishment distorts the facts of police violence in such a way as to erase or obscure, in a collectively self-serving way, black people killed by the police. Instead, the establishment erases the white victims of police violence while dwelling on, in excruciating detail, the black victims of police shootings. How does this advance the cause of white supremacy? One might say that it doesn’t, except that white supremacy is a vanishing thing.

To be sure, blacks are overrepresented among those killed by police officers. But there is no evidence that this is because they are black (The Myth of Systemic Racism in Lethal Police-Civilian Encounters.). Black people are disproportionately poor. The dynamic at work in lethal civilian-police encounters is social class, not race. Just as blacks are 2.5 times more likely to be poor compared to whites, they are 2.5 times more likely to be shot by police. Moreover, blacks are overrepresented in the most serious crimes, which means that they are proportionately more likely to come into contact with police officers compared to other racial groups. Poverty plays a role here.

Perhaps systemic racism explains why blacks are overrepresented among the poor and violently criminal. However, there are lots of reasons for racial disparities across a range of variables that have nothing to do with present-day racism, which, again, is vanishing.

To explode yet another myth about race and policing, very few people killed by the police are unarmed (which doesn’t mean they weren’t a threat, of course). For the record, most unarmed victims of lethal police action are white.

What about civilian-on-civilian violence? Most homicides are committed by black men, an astonishing fact considering that black men are only around six percent of the population. Their victims are mostly black people. I need to emphasize this point: black people are more likely to be the victims of homicide and their perpetrators are almost always black. You should find the fact that most murder victims are black in a population that’s only around twelve percent of the population alarming. Black lives matter, after all.

Imagine if a significant portion of the thousands of black people killed every year in the United States were instead the victims of white perpetrators. Do you think the media would then tell us about the black victims of homicide?

Black people, we are told, face racist violence every day. Whites are their oppressors. But the facts are clear: when it comes to interracial violence, most crime involves a black perpetrator and a white victim. (Why are there so Many More White than Black Victims of Interracial Homicide?)

Antiracist activist occupy restaurants and harass patrons

The inversion of racial significance is found elsewhere. For all these people saying that if it had been black people who had entered the Capitol building on January 6 instead of white people that the police would have treated the black people much more roughly, I would just remind them that for the entire summer and much of fall of 2020 across the United States black people burned down police stations and torched churches, terrorized residential neighborhoods, overturned police cars and assaulted police officers, defaced and toppled monuments, attacked and even killed civilians,  looted stores and wrecked businesses—they even occupied parts of cities and surrounded the White Housing forcing the First Family into a bunker. Billions of dollars in property damage and more than a dozen dead, with hundreds if not thousands injured. Were these violent and sometimes armed rioters treated anywhere nearly as severely as those who entered the Capitol on January 6?

I don’t say these thing to make blacks people look bad. Most black people are not engaged in violent crime or riotous action. There is nothing in the nature of a black man that makes him criminally violent or rebel against imagine conditions of oppression. I say this because the media makes whites appear as violent racist oppressors. It is not true. We must ask ourselves: why does the media make things appear to be the opposite of what they actually are? Why, if America is a white supremacist country, would the media manufacture the perception that whites are the the chief perpetrators of serious violence in America?

Nationalists and Patriots: Revisiting Orwell’s Worst Essay

[Nationalism] “does not necessarily mean loyalty to a government or a country, still less to one’s own country, and it is not even strictly necessary that the units in which it deals should actually exist.” —George Orwell, Note on Nationalism (1945)

“Remember this, take it to heart, live by it, die for it if necessary: that our patriotism is medieval, outworn, obsolete; that the modern patriotism, the true patriotism, the only rational patriotism, is loyalty to the Nation all the time, loyalty to the Government when it deserves it.” —Mark Twain, The Czar’s Soliloquy (1905)

The Happy Patriot, the Unhappy Nationalist, in The Atlantic, by Arthur C. Brooks, a professor of management practice at the Harvard Business School, is a bit dishonest, albeit not in a straightforward way. In fairness, Brooks is not alone in pulling quotes from George Orwell’s 1945 essay Notes on Nationalism and using them in the way he does. I do not think that he or others who use the essay in this way are being sloppy. Orwell announces his hedges throughout, clearly uncomfortable with his own argument.

I am a massive fan of Orwell’s work, but Notes on Nationalism is arguably his worst piece of writing. To wit: “Nationalism, in the extended sense in which I am using the word, includes such movements and tendencies as Communism, political Catholicism, Zionism, Antisemitism, Trotskyism and Pacifism.” His attempt to explain pacifism as nationalism is lazy at best. And this: “Jewry, Islam, Christendom, the Proletariat and the White Race are all of them objects of passionate nationalistic feeling: but their existence can be seriously questioned, and there is no definition of any one of them that would be universally accepted.” Odd for a socialist to suppose that the proletariat may rest upon a subjective basis, no? (Yes, Orwell was a socialist.)

Orwell makes clear in his essay that he is not using nationalism in the ordinary sense. Indeed. It would be helpful if those using his argument would be as honest as Orwell is about this. Rather, he explains that what he is after is an emotion that sometimes attaches to “what is called a nation—that is, a single race or a geographic area.” Since words are so important to Orwell, and since he has, however bad the essay, opened an important avenue of discussion, it is important as well that we get right the meaning of words. Clarification: I am not here to deconstruct Orwell’s essay. I am really after Brooks’ argument and the project he represents. However, getting the terminology right is key to understanding what’s wrong with Brook’s Atlantic piece, so please bear with me. As it will turn out, I won’t have much to say about Brooks’s piece, since correcting and updating Orwell makes the problem with Brooks rather plain.

By “race,” Orwell means what modern sociologists call ethnicity. Long before Orwell sat down to write his essay, race had become a biological construct referring to one’s genetic lineage and organized by a typology used to differentiate human populations. Obviously groups differ in other ways, such as culturally and linguistically. The construct of ethnic was developed only shortly before Orwell penned his piece and was soon being used to differentiate human populations without reference to race. Prior to this, cultural, linguistic, and even religious differences often came under the label “nation” or “nationality.” Long ago the concept of nation came to stand for a defined territory with a common state and system of law containing a body of people of one or more races. One’s nationality is determined by one’s birth in this territory and to its inhabitants (jus sanguinis) or, in some countries with the English common law tradition, one’s birth in this territory (jus soli). Given this, it is important to differentiate these words, with race referring to a biological entity, ethnicity to culture and language, nation to a juridical-political system with geographical boundaries, and nationality to one’s place of citizenship, either by birth or through naturalization.

With these distinctions in mind, there are two types of nationalism determined by the relationships between race, ethnicity, and nation. One type is found in a state that may be multiethnic or multiracial but where one or more ethnic or racial group is privileged in law, with other ethnic or racial groups existing in a lower status under that same law. Such a state is founded upon ethnonationalism or racial nationalism. Modern-day Israel, with its law reflecting the ideology of Zionism, officially recognizing Israel as a Jewish state, is an example of formal ethnonationalism. Arabs living in Israel have rights, but they are second-class citizens with respect to law and property. The other type of nationalism is civic or liberal nationalism, where different ethnicities and races stand equal before the law without respect to their ethnic or racial identities. This is accomplished by regarding citizens and residents as individuals first and as groups second (if at all and ideally only when group identity bears on individual liberty and rights). The United States is an example of a liberal nationalist country. In fact, it is the paradigm (which is why it is so great).

Orwell stresses throughout his essay that he is using the term because he cannot find another that expresses his point. We must therefore recognize that Orwell’s argument is already limited by his qualified use of a term that means in the ordinary sense the desire by a group of people who share a common sense of purpose, culture, and language to form an independent country. Moreover, nationalism is ordinarily understood as a feeling of pride in one’s country, an expression of patriotism, which can include a feeling that one’s country or region is better than others—what we might call chauvinism but for the popular understanding that chauvinism is characterized by aggressive and unreasonable belief in national superiority. (Some countries are better than others, so what may appear as chauvinism to those who regard one’s reasons as unreasonable may be warranted. For example, my bragging about the United States.)

Orwell was writing about nationalism of a particular sort in the wake of WWII—the experience of National Socialism and the attitude of putting nation, in this case explicitly associated with race, beyond decency. Orwell’s extraordinary use of nationalism was to attempt to describe a blind loyalty to a party appealing to such indecencies, especially ethnonationalism or racial nationalism.

Orwell distinguishes nationalism from patriotism, the latter defined as “devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force on other people.” Orwell defines nationalism in contrast: “Nationalism is power hunger tempered by self-deception.” Patriotism is defensive. “Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.” They appear as opposites, but Orwell’s definition of patriotism is nationalism in the ordinary sense. He twists into knots sentences to escape ordinary meaning. This essay was apparently written by the anti-Orwell.

I can understand Orwell’s claim that nationalism is power hungry given what Great Britain had just been through with Nazi Germany. But why would a term explicitly hedged from an emotional and time-trapped essay be the basis of a contemporary argument against nationalism? The Happy Patriot and the Unhappy Nationalist is propaganda work in the service of the globalism project. The give away is when Brooks writes, “Populism and demographic tribalism are on the rise worldwide.” This is true, but insinuating the two together means to taint the one with the other.

Populism is a political approach appealing to and organizing those ordinary people whose concerns and interests established power disregards. Only to the elite is organizing ordinary people to challenge the status quo in a truly democratic way seen as manipulating the rabble with demagoguery. We can understand this when we see that populism stands in contrast to progressivism and other elite approaches to shaping and steering popular desire and sentiment. Demographic tribalism occurs when a population is divided or divides into ethnic, gender, racial, and religious groups that operate as (apparently) politically-interested parties. That is certainly dangerous and it describes rather precisely what is presently threatening national integrity throughout the West.

I have read a fair bit of Brooks’ writing. He is a libertarian who served for many years as the president of the American Enterprise Institute before joining the faculty at Harvard. My interpretation of Brooks’ attitude, especially his understanding that populism is not a marginal movement but a major player in the culture war, is that he fears nationalism for its potentially constraining effects on free enterprise. In his mind, nationalism is closely aligned with statism.

What he is attempting to convey with this essay is that one should be patriotic about free market capitalism while opposing nationalism since it threatens his favored mode of production. He is a patriot for capitalism. At the same time, he is plugged into the sentiment that America should be fairer and more equitable. He strives to provide conservatives with moral arguments with which to defend capitalist foundations and encourages focus on neoliberal solutions to poverty. These arguments necessarily accept certain premises of corporatist ideology found in progressivism. Brooks is thus well situation in the Democratic-Republican Party establishment. And, today, that is globalist.

Brooks does not appear to grasp that the real threat to free market capitalism is not populist-nationalism but progressive corporatism (I will soon publish a lengthy blog on this subject, so stay tuned). Brooks’ essay is thus part of a campaign to delegitimize populist-nationalism by arguing that it is an expression of tribalism (racism, in particular), even while he is part of the established order that promotes demographic tribalism. In fact, populist-nationalism is the antidote to the demographic tribalism those managing the decline of the West organize and wield against the individual.

Intelligent, well-meaning, young people are willing to call white black

In 1949, George Orwell published his dystopian novel Nineteen Eight-Four. The book tells the story of a man named Winston Smith, a citizen of Airstrip One, and an employee of the Ministry of Truth, the organ of government in charge of an ever-changing historical narrative functional to the interests of the Party. The plot has Smith taken by an official named O’Brien to the Ministry of Love and rehabilitated for thought crimes. There, in Room 101, O’Brien explains to Smith that such truths as two and two makes four may be changed to fit the needs of the Party. Two and two may make five. Two and two may make three. Whatever the Party says. Of course, Smith knew this, as he was always changing history at the Ministry to Truth. But Smith became deviant because he failed at doublethink, the quality of mind that allows the subject to hold two contradictory ideas simultaneously.

In the end, Smith learned to love Big Brother. But coercion is not the only way to align one’s thought with the interests of the Party. Italian communist Antonio Gramsci argues in his prison notebooks that the elite control the masses not only through violence and economic (or structural) coercion, but also through culture and political ideology. Elites establish a common sense in which its interests are presented as ordinary social logic. Thus citizens are conditioned to accept elite interests as their own interests. Those so conditioned not only do not require discipline and punishment, but they often serve as social controllers for the elite on their own volition. Sometimes, they take up the duty with zeal.

Gramsci’s theory is concerned with identifying those institutions that function to bring the masses under hegemonic control, primarily by constructing a consensus reality that conceals or distorts objective reality and dissimulates power. Hegemony recreates Plato’s Cave without the prisoners feeling the weight of their chains or the dimness of their confines. What is undeveloped in Gramsci’s work is the social psychology that facilitates the process of hegemony. Unfortunately, man’s evolutionary history prepares him for elite manipulation.

In the early 1950s, social psychologist Solomon Asch found that people deny, ignore, and lie about reality even when the truth is in right in front of them and people can know they are lying. Some do this to conform to group expectations because they fear loss of solidarity. But others do this because they become unsure that what appears to their senses is actually what they should know it to be. For them, Ashe’s experiments were experienced as a gaslighting exercise.

Here’s what Asch did. He recruited eight male college students to participate in a “perceptual task.” But he actually only recruited one student. The other seven were confederates instructed to lie about task. The task involved the presentation of two cards, one with a line on it and another with three lines on it, each associated with a letter: A, B, and C. One line on the second card matched the length of the line on the first card. The other two were unmistakably different lengths. As the research went around the table, leaving the experimental subject last to respond, the confederates were unanimous in selecting a line that did not match.

Although most subjects resisted agreeing with the manufactured consensus, more than a third consistently conformed with the consensus reality. That was scary enough. However, in multiple trials, three-fourths of experimental subjects agreed with the incorrect answer in at least one of the trials. In debriefing, many subjects who aligned their answer to the false consensus reported knowing the group was wrong but did not want to be the dissenting voice. Again, scary enough. Others doubted their own ability to correctly determine reality. I don’t know which effect is more terrifying—not standing up for the truth or losing confidence in your ability to know an obvious one. Either way, the results troubled Asch. “That intelligent, well-meaning, young people are willing to call white black is a matter of concern,” he writes.

Indeed. Conforming to the consensus reality leads to terrible consequences. Hannah Arendt in her 1977 Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil describes the “banality of evil,” where mass murder in the twentieth century was not only a consequence of the dehumanizing effects of high modernity amid capitalist crisis, but also the result of the human tendency to go along with the herd. To obey the expectations of others. At the social psychological level, in a series of experiments performed a decade after those of Asch, Stanley Milgram confirmed Arendt’s assumptions by showing how ordinary people obey authority even when the task is unpleasant.

Add to the effects of peer pressure and obedience to authority to the deployment of coercion techniques. One need not turn to extremes of Winston Smith’s experience in Room 101. Consider what is nowadays being called “cancel culture.” In sociology, we have a term for this method of bringing about ideational and behavioral alignment in this way, namely social coercion. Bullying, gangstalking, gaslighting, mobbing—all of these are manifestations of social coercion tactics. Social coercion is mob action in which a false consensus about an issue is manufactured through intimidation, marginalization, ostracization, and even punishment. Those who are using social coercion tactics to control those around them often came willingly to false reality they play a role in manufacturing and perpetuating.

(See Witch Finder Boylan: Free Speech and Mass Hysteria; Living at the Borderline—You are Free to Repeat After Me; The New Left’s War on Imaginary Structures of Oppression in Order to Hide the Real Ones.)

New Religious Zealots

The remains of ten America Indian children who died more than one hundred years ago while attending Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania are being to their communities in Alaska and South Dakota, according to a notice from the Department of the Army, which oversees the cemetery.

The Carlisle Indian School student body circa 1885

Life expectancy in 1900 was around 45 years of age. If you lived to 60, your life expectancy going forward was at the beginning of the century comparable to what it would be at the end of the century. The low life expectancy was attributable in part to a high rate of child death. Children in orphanages, asylums, and other institutions for children suffered a particularly high rate of death.

The normal practice of the day was to bury the dead on the grounds of the institution. If we start digging up cemeteries, we are sure to find a lot of skeletons. If we do it selectively, then narrow claims may be manufactured. This is not to excuse the practice of removing American Indian children to industrial schools. Nobody alive today is responsible for that practice. It is to note sociological processes that manufacture social problems and the interested ways in which such manufactures happen.

Watch for moral panics useful for political agendas. We are living in a time where people use ghosts to extort the living. Ancestor worship and intergenerational trauma are primitive and irrational notions. The regressive demand that we act as if crimes are passed through our genes is part of the war on reason and justice waged by those who want stuff for nothing. Lots of stuff. For literally nothing. (See For the Good of Your Soul: Tribal Stigma and the God of Reparations; also A specter is haunting America—the specter of reparations.

Have you read Caroline Randall Williams’ June 26, 2020 essay on her “rape-colored skin”? Folks are sharing it again. In the essay, published by The New York Times, William’s offers her body as a monument. It is bad enough that she repeats the false claim that race is a biological reality; on that basis, she claims trauma from events that she could not possibly have experienced in order to insinuate that white people are guilty of crimes they could not possibly have committed. She writes as if she were a rape victim. Raped by history. Wearing rape-colored skin.

There is a very obvious psychological need here to draw attention to herself by claiming the mantle of martyrdom and the status of the victim—while politically reducing generations of white men to rapists. This way of thinking is simultaneously crazy and despicable. Why are we promoting crazy rather than treating it? Why are we tolerating the ideology that gives rise to racial hatred? (See The Endless Relitigating of the Past as a Postmodern Condition.)

* * *

Have you seen this circulating on Facebook?

A meme circulating on Facebook

I don’t believe in Jesus (I don’t think he was a real person). Why would I care if he waves my flag? But I should care when those who believe in Jesus or any other mythological figure try to tear down my country. Putting religion before country is not exactly the point of enshrining secularism in the First Amendment of US Bill of Rights. Indeed, the First Amendment was established precisely to counter the destructive notion that a people organize first on the basis of religion.

Why a destructive notion? In a theocracy, there is no freedom of conscience or freedom of thought. If the secular nation-state has any primary function, it is surely to protect the individual from forces that would deny his human rights to freedom of conscience and freedom of thought. The type of Christianity expressed in this sentiment is the political and moral equivalent of Islam. Very dangerous.

I remember quite clearly all of us folks on the left condemning conservative Christians for telling us what to think, how to organize our culture, how to live our lives. But there is another moral and political equivalent to Christian theocracy. And it hasn’t yet been reformed. The Woke crowd are the new religious fanatics. And anti-Enlightenment is the driving force behind their interventions in the world. Is it any wonder that the social justice warrior is so eager to defend Islam? (Islamic hostility to homosexuals and women may not signal a contradiction.)

I oppose organizing the world by the lights of Woke with the same enthusiasm as I do with any other theocratic endeavor. A diversity, equity, and inclusivity workshop is a come-to-Jesus meeting. Teaching children critical race theory in public schools is Bible study. Teaching it to soldiers is ideological indoctrination. Working it into law and policy violates the First Amendment. All this betrays the nation’s principles, which are humanist, rationalist, and secularist. Why are we allowing this to happen to our country?

God is Everywhere—On the Ontology of Systemic Racism and the Faith-Belief of the Progressive

I realize a lot of people disagree with me on my rejection of the systemic racism thesis. My rejection of the thesis (which is based on evidence and logic) is not the main reason I oppose teaching critical race theory to children. My objection there is not that it is wrong but that it is taught as if it were the truth. It is wrong to lie to children. So while I teach critical theory in my law courses, I do not teach it as gospel. However, opposition among conservatives to the teaching of critical theory is formed on the basis of a correct understanding of race relations in contemporary United States. I suspect that one of the reasons so much energy is spent mocking and ridiculing conservatives is the need to poison the well on this issue.

A Yahoo News/YouGov poll is out indicating an association between support for critical race theory being taught in public school and belief in the notion of systemic racism, with conservative respondents skeptical of the existence of the phenomenon and therefore less likely to support the public instruction of critical race theory. (See Are Teachers Really all in on Critical Race Theory?) Critical race theory, boiled down, is an academic theory developed in law school rooted in the assumption that racism is embedded in the US legal system and American institutions. (See Crenshaw Confesses: Critical Race Theory is About Racial Reckoning. Also State Media Defends Critical Theory.)

Buckner, Kentucky, June 28, 2021

One might look at American history and note that the system of de jure (that is legal) racism was dismantled more than half a century ago and wonder what the claim that racism is embedded in the legal system could mean. The response to incredulity is that racism is axiomatic and that, therefore, the absence of a race-conscious legal system and of race-conscious institutions and policies is the manifestation systemic racist. In other words, colorblindness, equal treatment, race-neutrality, etc., equals racism. The response is similar to the response I get when I ask a believer how he can believe in God when there is no evidence for God’s existence. The believer responds, “Just look around you. God is everywhere.” I have also been told that the greatest trick the Devil ever played is telling me that God is not real.

It’s a cute trick that I confess falling for at first. Not the God thing. The systemic racism thing. But the God thing compelled me to ask about evidence for the systemic racism thing. I have tried to live my life beyond faith-belief. It’s why I became a scientist. So I took a look and, to be sure, the facts indicate that blacks trail whites in every significant social category. Putting this in sociological terms, life chances for whites are on average better than they are for blacks. Whites as a group enjoy better health care outcomes and longer lives, higher levels of educational attainment, greater labor force participation rates, higher salaries and wages, nicer homes, less criminality and violence, and their children are more likely to live in two-parent homes. These and other group disparities are often cited in defending the claim that whites enjoy a racial privilege.

However, the distribution of situations and life chances internal to respective racial categories are more variable than average differences between groups on these factors and, moreover, whereas variability concerns individuals, statistical averages are abstractions. I can see, for example, that there are many more poor whites than blacks (three times more), whereas a greater percentage of blacks are poor relative to demographic proportion (see They Do You This Way). I agree that statistical aggregates are useful in predicting other statistical aggregates. But to draw assumptions about individuals based on abstractions commits both the ecological fallacy and the fallacy of misplaced concreteness (or reification). Even at the level of statistical abstraction, group disparities do not explain those facts. Unexplained variance is just that.

Social facts accepted, the western system of jurisprudence developed in the context of adjudicating disputes between actually-existing individuals and formal groups. Put another way, the common law developed to deal with the matters of concrete fact not statistical abstraction. Moreover, the burden of proof rests with the accusers, while the accused is presumed innocent. The court does not accept prima facie an accusation as correct until proven otherwise. This gets the burden wrong. First impressions are often incorrect or inaccurate. A disparity is not proof of an injustice. Effects are not their causes. Any claim made about causal forces must identify and specify them and show empirically that the outcomes in question result from them while ruling out other causes. The foundation of the democratic republic is secular and supernatural claims are walled off for this reason. Yet the advocates of critical race theory ask us to substitute for the absence of evidence for systemic racism in law and institution results of unidentified or unspecified processes that lie beyond the law.

After overcoming the false belief of systemic racism, I wondered why conservatives are immune to the fallacious manner of thinking that propels the myth of systemic racism and white privilege even while they admit that personal prejudice and discrimination exist and are wrong. Here’s what I think is going on.

A thought-stopping mechanisms was put in me from a very young age wherein, if I were to blame individuals for their situation, I would find myself blaming the victim if the individuals in question were black and feel ashamed. Asians and Jews, two groups who have historically suffered remarkable levels of racism (or, in the case of Jews, at least something very much like it), overcame their situation in the United States through the ethic of hard work. Asians and Jews emphasize the importance of family, community, initiative, and responsibility. One can say this in the present of progressives without much controversy if certain comparisons are not made. One may not ask the same questions about the disparities between blacks and whites.

One may note the failures and pathologies of whites. Did they have babies too young and too often? Is the father involved? Does the parent surprise and discipline her child? Does she emphasize educational achievement? Does she drink and drug? To be sure, there are other reasons why there are poor white people. Corporations shipped the factories overseas. Politicians opened the border to mass immigration. But the point is that we’re allowed to include everything in the analysis. For sure, we may not claim that the situation of poor whites is the result of systemic racism. 

A conservative will tell you that everything I above identified played some role in creating and perpetuating white poverty. Globalization has made life difficult for the white working class. But members of that class have also often made life difficult for themselves. Not all poor white people were always or will always remain poor. That tells you a lot. Some change their lives for the better and they would take offense at the suggestion that they played no role in overcoming their circumstances. However, unlike the progressive, the conservative will also consider all these same possibilities with respect to the situation of a black person. He is open to explanations that rest on class and economics. But he is also open to cultural explanations. Too many children born out of wedlock? Fathers involved? Children supervised and disciplined?

The progressive cannot be open to cultural explanations with respect to blacks because he believes that to do so makes a man a racist. To be a good men, he must be the opposite of a racist. He must be the antithesis—the antiracist. The antiracist assumes group disparities, where those groups are differentiated by racial identity, are the result of injustices visited upon all members of the victim group. He has a priori excluded from all possible explanations the role of attitudes and behavior among those judged victims of circumstance. The progressive is still allowed to use the cultural explanation for groups not judged victims. He has no problem condemning the backward and ignorant whites who vote Republican and complain about critical race theory at meetings of their local school boards. In this instance, what a conservative believes is what explained his behavior. The white murderer chooses to pick up a gun and murder his victim. The black murderer kills because white supremacy put a gun in his hand.

Progressives believe in critical race theory being taught in public schools because they believe in a thing without evidence, indeed, a belief that flies in the face of the evidence, as well as defies logic because evidence and logic do not apply to faith-belief. Faith-belief is stood up on ideological ground. They also believe in teaching CRT to children because this makes them an antiracist and therefore a good person. In contrast, conservatives are immune from belief in systemic racism not because they are racist or bad people but because they neither reflexively nor selectively disallow cultural explanations for the outcomes progressives accept as prima facie evidence of systemic racism. Progressives want you to believe conservatives are backwards and ignorant. But, at least on this matter, they are thinking for themselves.

Can I Get an “Amen” to That? No, But Here’s Some Fairy Dust

I am wondering if anybody can help me understand something. I am having trouble understanding why, if it is wrong to discipline or punish people for not adhering to religious beliefs others hold, for failing or refusing to take up a given religion’s doctrinal language, how can it be okay to discipline or punish people for not adhering to doctrinal language of critical race and gender theories? If I cannot be forced to believe in angels (or to not believe in angels), how can I be forced to believe that all whites enjoy racial privilege or that sex is not a biological reality or that 2+2=5 or that there are only four lights no matter how many lights they want me to see? Why is it not immediately grasped as the nightmare par excellence the act of forcing somebody to deny what they see before their eyes or know to be true or to believe something they neither see nor know? Or is the greater nightmare that some people find comfort and safety there?

When an employer requires an employee to attend a diversity workshop where he will be instructed to speak in a particular way and accept as true and good (or at least pretend that he has accepted some thing as true and good) things based on one theory among many about race or gender, why is that any different than requiring that employee to attend Bible studies and expect him to accept Jesus into his life? Doesn’t the Constitution protect individuals from having to accept the beliefs other people think are good and proper? Are we not as citizens of a constitutional republic based on Enlightenment principles of free thought and conscience with a bill of rights securing these protected from forced association and assembly and compelled speech around religion and political ideology? Critical race and gender theories are at least political (I argue they’re religious given references to impossible or at least supernatural things, but the status political is good enough).

A society that punishes people for words is a society that compels people to exist in bad faith. I am all for persuading people to take up or leave behind positions based on evidence and reason. I would be an unethical person if I were satisfied that others agreed with me because they didn’t want to hurt my feelings or because they were scared of what would happen to them if they didn’t. Imagine we live in a fascist society (we’re on our way). I am sure many of those reading this would be compelled by fear to participate in the indoctrination sessions necessary to bring the population around to the fascist point of view. Winston and Picard were stubborn men. Then again, they were fictional men. Can we regard those who live under fascism a free people? Can we regard any man who must believe and speak an ideology free? Wouldn’t an objective condition of freedom necessarily be that a man is never forced into the delusions of others?

If you want to understand why it is so important to religious or, more broadly, ideological zealots that you believe as they do, you must grasp this—that many of the things the zealot believes (or pretends he believes) exist only because he believes they exist. If too many people stop believing in them, the phantoms of his beliefs lose light and power. Skeptics are trouble. Apostates, heretics, and infidels. If the phantoms dim or evaporate, then that means the zealot loses you. But he wants you to live in his world so he can control you. He wants this so bad that he feels he needs it. If he didn’t want to control you, if he didn’t need to control you, then he would leave you alone. However, if he commands societal power, then he can make you live in his world. What’s wrong with him?

Remember Tinker Bell from Peter Pan? Remember how when her light is going out Peter Pan turns to the audience and in a dramatic display of emotional blackmail exhorts them to chant, “I do believe in fairies! I do! I do!” Millions of children have over the century been coerced by parents and peers to chant along with him, “I do believe in fairies! I do! I do!” Doesn’t that give the away the game? Isn’t Pan telling us that Tinker Bell only exists because you believe in her? How horrible it would be to let her light go out. What’s wrong with you?

Margaret Kerry in a scene from Disney’s Peter Pan (1953)

Pan (actually playwright J. M. Barrie) is telling us something essential. He is telling us that the fantasies of other people depend on our assisting them in upholding their voracity. When people tell us to affirm with them that some thing they believe is true, they are telling us that they aren’t sure it is, or that other people have doubted it, and they need us to help convince them and others that their delusions are not delusions, but that they are real. They need an “Amen.” Can I hear an “Amen”? The desire to compel other people to uphold one’s delusions is often unthinking, habitual, reflexive, sometimes even required. But sometimes it indicates a psychiatric disorder. And sometimes people who are mentally ill don’t want therapy. They want the rest of the world to join them in their madness.

In a revision to Barrie’s play, the invention of “fairy dust” was introduced. The fairy dust was necessary for the Wendy and her siblings to fly. Before, they could just fly without any special sauce. They could fly because they believed they could fly. But too many real-world children were jumping from beds and windows in an attempt to get to Neverland and its never-ending adventures. Some were badly injured. Without fairy dust, they were grounded. Sadly, it took a fiction to negate a fiction. Of course, they were children. What did they know?