Bullies

Jun. 20th, 2014 10:07 am
vostoklake: (punch)
"There are some people so repugnant that we refer to them as Icons of Hate." - St Janor Hypercleats

Some people have the wrong idea about bullying. I'm not talking, here, about childhood bullies, the beat-you-up and take-your-lunch money bullies, the chant-rude-names-at-you bullies, the ones who do bad things but do it in private because, really, they know they're being wicked and they don't want people to find out. (I'm ignoring here the phenomenon of teachers ignoring or encouraging bullying against students that they think "deserve" it.)

Nor am I talking about the equivalent among adults, the sexual harassers, the domestic abuser, the tyrannical boss. Again, that's far too obvious.

What I'm talking here is about the kind of people who misuse a precious gifts given to us by the holy Muses direct from Mt Helicon. I'm talking about the people who misuse satire.

As anyone familiar with Irish bardic lore, or at least Robert Graves' wacky distillation of it in The White Goddess, can tell you, satire has always been a powerful weapon. It's "left-handed" poetry. The paradigm of satire is: you follow someone down the street, mimicking him exactly, then you trip and fall, making sure to fall soft while he falls hard. Any decent comedian or political cartoonist has to learn to do this, and done right it's glorious, the Fool taking his privilege to point out that the emperor has no clothes.

But the bullies I'm talking about break a cardinal rule of comedians. They punch down. The Fool kicks a helpless stray dog.

This is different from other forms of bullying because it's not a dirty secret between the abuser and the abusee. It only works because it happens in public, with the abuser's buddies watching. It's a form of social control within groups.

Generally the victim is an outsider to the group, or one of those people only allowed on the fringes of the group if they accept their inferior status. Part of that status is to accept being the butt of the Satirist-Bully's hilarity.

Now there's nothing your average human wants better than social status. And sometimes one of these "beta wolves" will want to climb the pack hierarchy. They find something within themselves that they think might bring them status within the group - or they want to share it to see whether they can open stronger affinity channels that way.

That's when the Satirist-Bully goes to work. He ruthlessly mocks what the Inferior is bringing to the table. Not only is this new thing worthless and foolish, but the person who presents it is worthless and foolish. And he mocks and belittles it, and humiliates the Inferior, with enough skill that anyone else will think it's freakin' hilarious. It's "manufacturing consent", to use a Chomskyism, for social control and violence. Because the Satirist-Bully is a good guy, one of the team, then other people will tolerate or even support him using his skills of humour to break an "inferior's" attempts to gain status. Because they're already in the in-group. They're not under threat.

And then people like that end up in comfortable, middle-management jobs, occasionally honing their skills on trying to break the wills and independence of their own children; while the Inferior is lucky to go through life with nothing worse than negative self-esteem at having their attempts to just "be some one" ripped up, thrown back at them, and mocked as always having been worthless. If they're less lucky, they end up permanently damaged, on welfare, in hospital, on the streets, dead.

Mr Satirist-Bully, you gain your social status at the expense of the mental health of others. You misuse a holy gift which could be used to make the world a better place. My aim in life is to make sure that you end up chewing on broken glass, before you die, alone and in the dark.

vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1q6SPom at June 12, 2014 at 10:32PM
""In the Monkey school, the devotee actively clings to god, who saves him through his grace, just as..."


"In the Monkey school, the devotee actively clings to god, who saves him through his grace, just as a baby monkey clings to its mother as she moves through the trees.

In the Cat school, by contrast, the devotee is passive and is saved through grace alone, as kittens allow a mother cat to pick them up by the scruffs of their necks and carry them without any effort on their part. Indeed the Cat devotee should not make any effort, should go limp as a kitten, since any effort would simply get in the way of the mother cat.”


- Description of two opposing philosophical schools of the Shri Vaishnava sect of Hinduism, from Wendy Doniger, The Hindus: An Alternative History
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1xC0Svt at June 10, 2014 at 08:58PM
tastefullyoffensive: [wierddad]
tastefullyoffensive:

[wierddad]
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1xC0Sf2 at June 10, 2014 at 08:51PM
"Economists have a singular method of procedure. There are only two kinds of institutions for them,..."
“Economists have a singular method of procedure. There are only two kinds of institutions for them, artificial and natural. The institutions of feudalism are artificial institutions, those of the bourgeoisie are natural institutions. In this, they resemble the theologians, who likewise establish two kinds of religion. Every religion which is not theirs is an invention of men, while their own is an emanation from God. When the economists say that present-day relations - the relations of bourgeois production - are natural, they imply that these are the relations in which wealth is created and productive forces developed in conformity with the laws of nature. These relations therefore are themselves natural laws independent of the influence of time. They are eternal laws which must always govern society. Thus, there has been history, but there is no longer any. There has been history, since there were the institutions of feudalism, and in these institutions of feudalism we find quite different relations of production from those of bourgeois society, which the economists try to pass off as natural and, as such, eternal.”
- Karl Marx, The Poverty Of Philosophy (via foucault-the-haters)
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1kFAuvj at June 06, 2014 at 08:10PM
When Clambakers AttackWhen Clambakers Attack:

David Farrier finds out what happens when you write favourably about Tom Cruise and Scientology.

… basically you get your comments box deluged with the denizens of the excellent Underground Bunker blog, calling you every name under the sun, accusing you of being an OSA agent in a “stat push”. Then, when befuddled Kiwis who couldn’t tell an e-meter from an e-mail join in to tell the screaming anti-Scienos that they’re making themselves look as crazy as a cult, the anti-Scienos start accusing other commenters of being Scienos, OSA, and yelling inside jokes like “get your TRs in for CoB!” 

Way to go, guys, you just made anti-Scientology look stupid. Meanwhile, David Farrier is cool because he’s going after the Tickle King.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1kzGBBb at June 05, 2014 at 02:42PM
When Worlds Collide
FOOTBALL TEAMMATE: So how did you spend the long weekend?
ME: I was at a political conference.
FT: What kind of politics?

ME: Radical left-wing.

FT: So… the Greens?
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1p3M1V3 at May 19, 2014 at 08:47AM
Given the two totalitarian propaganda images above, is any else...
Given the two totalitarian propaganda images above, is any else but me mentally writing uniform fetish fanfic about the Sea Org lady and the DPRK soldier lady, er, discovering some mutual interests?

llladies
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1kanMUK at May 17, 2014 at 04:10PM
The Auditor, global journal of Scientology, puffing up their...
The Auditor, global journal of Scientology, puffing up their most recent celebrity Clear, William S. Burroughs, in 1968. Though WSB  believed that Dianetic “tech” did have something to it, he broke with the Church soon afterwards over their dictatorial internal culture and secrecy, and wrote this.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1uXtTAq at May 13, 2014 at 04:26PM
That’s not what the Church of Scientology says.
That’s not what the Church of Scientology says.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1sFAuxj at May 13, 2014 at 08:38AM
Mental health and activism: answers to a survey
1) Do you believe there is prejudice amongst activists/anarchists toward mental illness, in what ways do you see it? using crazy as a negative adjective? Health concern trolling? disregarding of personal experience/ trauma related stuff?

I think that many activists’ prejudice consists in seeing mental health issues as either personal weakness/moral failure/not being tough enough to be a real activist; or, alternatively, a belief that anything that’s wrong with you can be cured by being “involved in the struggle alongside the working class”, because “real workers” don’t have time to be crazy what with all that struggling.

2) Has this prejudice made difficult for you to reach out when in need? has it made it difficult to challenge certain behaviour/attitudes. Do you sometimes wonder if people “gaslight” you?

Basically these ideas have - in the past - led me to be simply marginalised and ignored by the organisation, because if you’re not In The Struggle your opinions are more or less irrelevant. I was seen as a passenger, something not useful. Once a comrade screamed at me for “playing the victim”.

3) If you do not have lived experience what are/have your ideas of mental illness been? what have your experiences been in terms of support? N/A

4) Have you ever tried to access mental health addiction services? how easy/hard was it. What barriers did you face?

My experiences of mental health services have been positive, although: a) it did take me a while to get through to them; b) I’ve never tried to access a crisis team because I’ve heard that it’s pot luck whether you get a competent person or a bozo.

5) How does you mental health intersect with other forms of oppression/privilege you face?

Certainly mental health issues intersect with gender/sexuality issues. It’s no coincidence that the leaders of these hyper-activist organisations where “throwing yourself into the struggle” is the sole test of your personal worth and right to be listened to are cis het white males (with a couple of CHW females for balance).

6) what would an accessible and supportive movement look like to you?

A supportive movement would be ones where comrades’ emotions and personal issues aren’t seen as unnecessary, crippling distractions from The Struggle; one which doesn’t replicate capitalism’s control mechanisms, bullying and alienation on the inside; one which values the ability to empathise and express emotion as well as being able to write a cogent article, sell a newspaper or start a fight with a cop on a picket line.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1llCLe4 at May 12, 2014 at 05:01PM
Bishop Brown loved Joe Stalin (attn Out To...
Bishop Brown loved Joe Stalin (attn Out To Lunch)

levantineviper:

Teachings of Marx for Girls and Boys (1935) was written by American Anglican bishop William Montgomery Brown who intended for it to be a tool to teach children about Marxism and communism. Brown was tried for heresy because of his communist views in 1925, making him the first Anglican bishop to be tried for heresy since the Reformation.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1gbLWPo at May 12, 2014 at 08:48AM
Scientologists having a “Star Wars” party....
Scientologists having a “Star Wars” party. You’ll shit bricks.
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/SNBlQl at May 11, 2014 at 01:56PM
Satan: the true God of fundamentalism
"Satan was a BFD in the Pentacostal religion of my youth. They talked about him at least as much as they talked about Jesus and way more than God. God was distant and mysterious but Satan was in your day to day life — causing car accidents, messing with the radio, making kids fall asleep in church, causing men to cheat on their wives. Hell of a good scapegoat."
- from a comment on Tony Ortega’s excellent Scientology blog
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1fVq6PD at May 10, 2014 at 10:50AM
L. Ron Hubbard called this a “noisy investigation”....
L. Ron Hubbard called this a “noisy investigation”. There is a whole “spiritual technology” about intimidating anyone who gets in the way of the Chosen Ones.

clams
vostoklake: (Default)
Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1iZ61Zl at May 08, 2014 at 02:57PM
Gift

In English, a present or donation; in German, poison. Is there a way in
which the poison of clinical depression can be seen as a gift? Or, at
least, can we radically accept it, if all the pills, thrills, and
therapist’s bills in the universe won’t get rid of it?

"There’s nothing so dangerous as a man with nothing to lose", as I think
Dead Can Dance said at one point, and if there’s no hope or light or love
in the universe, you have nothing to lose. Think on it - everyone in the
universe, to the best or worst of their ability, acts in the way that
might bring them happiness, pleasure, or what the economists call
“utility”. And if nothing brings you pleasure, if your life is
meaningless… you can do what you like.

Of course, this means you can kill yourself right now. Or you can make the
rest of your life mean something by devoting it to something better than
feeding your face or your genitals or playing some other game that offers
the prize of being Better Than Others.

Of course, you have no way of known that the subject of your devotion (in
Sanskrit, bhakti) is worthwhile. You might end up in a mind-control cult.
But - if you can’t feel pleasure anyway - is that worse than lying in bed
all day, eating chocolates and posting to Tumblr? Really? Devotion is a
superset of romantic love - it’s not rational, it’s blind, and no-one and
nothing in this physical universe is really worth it. And yet, without it,
there is absolutely no point to anything except a monkey masturbating in a
cage after eating its full of bananas.

Christian mystics call this “the dark night of the soul”, but for you
atheists, I think that Jean-Paul Sartre got to someplace very similar in
his philosophy. Me, I just think it’s helpful to think that depression
makes you stronger and capable of more - if it’s not misdirected into
self-destruction, which is just a waste of… everything.
vostoklake: (plath)
When you finally realise that you have no control over outcomes, only your own actions - and that only marginally, over the top of bad habits, avoidance patterns, and the rules of your personal identity game - you understand that you only have what you give away, and that any action must be meaningful in itself. Then the goal of survival as a living creature becomes the question of what goal you survive for - or, in other words, which fire you will walk into, as a sacrifice to What Really Matters.
vostoklake: (commie)
KJU

Now this is a story all about how
I rose to political and military power
So I’d like to take a minute - what do you say? -
To tell you how I became the boss of the DPRK.

In north-west Korea I was born and raised
In Switzerland is where I spent my school days
Learning foreign languages, eating steak
And racing some jetskis out on the lake
When my brother, who was the successor as planned,
Got caught sneaking into Disneyland
So when my dad dropped dead, the whole Party gang
Said: “You’re ruling with your aunty and uncle in Pyongyang.”

I whistled for a tank, and when it came near
They called me “Brilliant Comrade” and saluted in fear
I told them they were spending 20 years in the camps
But then I said “Only joking. Yo! Home to Pyongyang!”

I pulled up to the palace ‘bout 7 or 8 
And I took out my uncle and shot him as a traitor
Looked at my kingdom, what a glorious day
To sit on the throne of the DPRK.
vostoklake: (plath)
I wake up depressed. No matter how organised and routine-oriented I try to be - shower, dressed, breakfast, coffee, meditation, medication, briskly run through my email and favourite website - by the time it comes to sitting down and actually being productive, I have a headache, I can't concentrate, I have that sinking feeling in my gut which can't consider anything more than just going back to bed. Under stress, I have a tendency to disassociate - to escape the anxiety and feeling of impending doom by stepping "outside" my body and watching it sadly as it goes through the motions.

I know that time is stupidly precious and it's a terrible crime to let it slip away into this kind of squalid inertia. But what else is possible when your head is full of clouds and your belly is full of muck? No pills and no drinks and no sugary foods will help for more than a few moments. "Manning up" only produces more resistance from the forces within you which tell you that the world is unbearable and failure is inevitable, demanding that you go away and hide somewhere.
vostoklake: (emo)
Everything I've ever done in my life is to make others think well of me. I never particularly wanted to be a university lecturer or make big money or be a professional musician. I just wanted those things because those are things that "normals" understand and respect - or, perhaps, things that even my oafish stepfather would have understood - and I just didn't want people to look down on me and consider me worthless like they did for most of my life. Because I have never learned how to actually value myself in my own terms - I value myself by how much others value me, which is never enough.

The word which has chased me all my life is self-indulgent - that chasing my own visions and desires is shameful and slightly disgusting, on the level of public masturbation. (And don't ask about the sexualised undertones of that discourse.) I have gotten really good at repressing and hiding what I want, to please and impress others. But it's never been enough to prevent me considering myself worthless.

My life is wonderful at so many subjective levels - I earn my living self-employed doing intellectually challenging work I enjoy, I am engaged to be married to the most wonderful <strike>bag full of gremlins called Batman</strike> woman on the planet, I have my health and a nice place to live and a delightful cat. But I can't point to anything in my life which would have made my stepfather or my grandmother - probably my internal guide for "what normal people are like" - think I was worth anything. A PhD, articles in communist newspapers and a couple of albums with a total sale of under 100 don't count. So I don't feel I'm worth anything.



vostoklake: (joss)
You know, we all know how Luke Skywalker reacted on finding out that Darth Vader was his father. I don't think there's been much exploration on how Vader reacted...

"Master?"
Yes, Lord Vader, what can I do for you?
"Military intelligence reports that... the rebel responsible for the destruction of the Death Star... was Luke... Skywalker."
Oh yes. That'll be your son.
"My son??"
Yes, old friend, how many Skywalkers do you think there are in this galaxy?
"But... you told me..."
That Padme's child died with her, yes. I was lying.
"...lying."
Yep, lying through my teeth. Have you got a problem with that?
"..."
This is the Dark Side of the Force, Lord Vader! Lying is all good if it leads to more power! Have you got a problem with that? Hmmm...?
"... no, Master."
Good. Anyway, I'm not going to take moral lessons from the guy who murdered an entire kindergarten of Jedi younglings. Now, go find that kid and bring him to the Dark Side. Tell him we have cookies, if necessary.