The Leftist Sense of SelfLet me begin by stating that I am, at best, an amateur psychologist. If I found myself back in my college years, I’d multiple-major in Psychology (and Economics) in addition to what I did study; it’s really fascinating. But I have done a fair amount of reading on the topic.So if you’ll permit my observations of the stereotypical Leftist, let me begin with this excerpt from what I consider a seminal essay by Evan Sayet, Regurgitating the Apple:What I discovered is that the Modern Liberal looks back on 50,000 years, 100,000 years of human civilization, and knows only one thing for sure: that none of the ideas that mankind has come up with--none of the religions, none of the philosophies, none of the ideologies, none of the forms of government--have succeeded in creating a world devoid of war, poverty, crime, and injustice. So they're convinced that since all of these ideas of man have proved to be wrong, the real cause of war, poverty, crime, and injustice must be found--can only be found--in the attempt to be right.The moment I read this, doubly-reinforced when I saw his video about the “Unified Theory of Liberalism”, I realized he was spot-on correct: Leftists will deliberately choose evil, every time, to prove to others in their group (and themselves) that they aren’t trying to be right. (What’s that old joke? “A liberal is someone who is so open-minded they won’t even take their own side in an argument!”)There’s more in that essay and video, but I want to add my observations of the Leftist mind. Note that I also have started to read – warning, IMHO it’s pretty academic (and thus quite dry) so far – the book The Liberal Mind. I’m only in the first chapter, but it’s looking promising. (In parallel I’ve also started The Closing of the Liberal Mind: How Groupthink and Intolerance Define the Left.) Both being read, mind you, in my copious free time. HA!Just as one sample consider this. A gay pride parade banned displays of the Israeli flag and Magen David (Star of David)… why? Because it might offend their Fakestinian* buddy-buddies. You know, the same people who – in “Palestine” – kill gays. (Just as, more broadly, Muslims in general kill gays almost everywhere in the Islamic world.) It fits the theorem to a “T”: gays taking the side of those whose as-practiced ideology would throw them off a building, or hang them from a construction crane.The mind boggles.DRUG ADDICTSIn the days when I debated in the local paper’s comment section I was one of the few regularly-posting people from the Right. One day a Leftist sneeringly replied to one of my comments “Do you realize nobody ever ‘likes’ your comments?” My reply was something to the effect of “I didn’t realize we were in a high school popularity contest.”But that got me thinking that Leftists are herd-beasts (I started keeping track – all the good little Leftists would like-swarm each others’ comments). They move together. They think together. They studiously avoid thoughts that are not of The Collective. A former co-worker was, one day, ranting about eeeeeevil Conservative attacks on Planned Parenthood; he then commented “I don’t know anyone who is against abortion.” I raised my hand, and he sneered and dismissed me outright. That reprises the apocryphal quote “I can’t believe Nixon won. I don’t know anyone who voted for him.”Liberals are constantly checking their views against those of their fellows because, deep down, they’re not sure of their own. I think that it’s one reason they slide to further and further extremes. It also simply explains, as in Occam’s Razor, why they can turn on each other so readily when one strays off the reservation. But consider this essay, which makes me think that these people actually get a high off the rush of approvals by their fellow liberals. So what happens with drug addicts? They constantly have to increase the dose. So, liberals constantly go further and further in being SJWs to exceed the last person who got adulation.Ultimately, for the Leftist, it’s not about what they think, it’s about what others think about them. Read this essay by a psychologist whose work and essays I really like; alas, she’s gone dark after Obama’s re-election. And then READ IT AGAIN – it’s that good. They’re not strong enough to stand on their own convictions.PRETZEL LOGICSo the above explains the absolute contortions that Leftists will put themselves through to maintain the groupthink.Leftist will never grasp Occam’s Razor. They can’t. When the simplest explanation flies in the face of their preconceived prejudices, they would rather twist themselves into pretzels to make their bigoted explanation fit than to simply admit they were wrong.Why, because nothing terrifies a Leftist more than ostracism by their peers. Consider this video: AFDI Video at #WomensMarch: Violence, Profanity and Hate, Our Reporter Attacked; watch how viciously this reporter is treated for asking questions that violate the shibboleth that Islam is peaceful and tolerant (in general, note how they savage anyone who steps away from The Collective). Despite the actual facts of the Islamic Hijra Invasion, something I’ll speak to in another essay, they’ll deny-deny-deny – just as whenever any liberal, per Dr. Sanity above, will outright lie even when accused of something provable; and when the truth comes out, will admit to just a smidge of it, but deny the rest. Watch The Clinton Lie Ratchet as just one example.Consider the absolute insanity of a German woman, raped by an immigrant, who apologized to her attacker. Doubtless moving in social circles dominated by the Left, she accepted being raped rather than go after him legally – because to do so would lead to her being shunned. Further, I’ll opine that she received applause in her social circle for doing so. Another example: the Czech girl scout who I am sure not only believes what she said about getting over the physical harm of being raped by a Muslim immigrant, but I’d bet good money she got praises and letters and flowers too. That can be a serious dopamine rush!FLAWED FOUNDATIONI am convinced that, in addition to their desperate drug addition to the monkeys-on-crank applause by their fellows, they are wedded to a crippling lack of a core personality. What I mean by this is, to build on Krauthammer’s famous quote “Conservatives think they have better ideas; Liberals think they are better people.”Consider the following statement:I hold this set of beliefs; therefore, I am a good person.Mull it over for a while.A BIT OF HISTORYI was raised liberal, very liberal. As I said in my Introduction, I was born in the “People’s Republic of Massachusetts”. My parents were far left, as was virtually everyone I knew; I believed all the “correct” things – that tax cuts were bad, guns were evil, abortion was fine, Republicans were racist and selfish, the military should be slashed, and so on. Name the Leftist belief, I believed it. Like a fish, I didn’t notice the waters in which I swam because I knew no different.I was living in the Midwest when my police officer neighbor remarked that I should get a gun for self-defense. Having been raised, all my life, to believe that civilian gun ownership was wrong, it shocked me to my core that – of all people – a cop was telling me this.Unlike most Leftists – and have no doubt that I still was one – I didn’t dismiss this as a flier data point stated by a knuckledraggingslopedforeheadredneck, but rather it made me think those great two words that often stand at the threshold of a new insight: That’s weird…I started to pay more attention to the ads being put forth by the gun control lobby; data that, hitherto for, I had accepted at face value because they matched what I already thought (i.e., confirmation bias). I wrote to the NRA and what was then Handgun Control Inc. I would follow up with requests for more information on specific topics; e.g., I’d get something from one side, so I’d write the other side for their data on the same topic. I wrote to the researchers whose works were being cited to ask follow-up questions based on their works (most responded!). And I’d cross-check, compare, and lo and behold, I realized something very fundamental – something that, of course, the Rightward side already knows: In virtually every instance, the NRA was far more accurate and complete in its picture.One egregious example was this famous ad by gun controllers (multiple versions exist). Utterly convincing on its gut-reaction face, upon considered reflection I realized it did not normalize for the population size. Just that fact alone made me suspicious; years later I heard the phrase “Local instability means global instability” as related to my career – the same holds true for propaganda: once a side is shown to be not just biased (after all, every side puts forth information sympathetic to its argument!), but outright deceptive, all credibility falls away. I, like most people, have a strong aversion to being intentionally lied to.As a result of this revelation, not only did I switch from being a ban-them-all gun controller, but it was one of the defining moments in my move away from the Left and towards the Right.STRENGTHS & WEAKNESSESSo think back to that phrase I told you to mull over.I, even in my callow youth, had the strength of personality to not tie my image of myself as a good person to any one specific belief. I knew who I was. My sea-change awareness and switching sides on gun control, and subsequently more issues, did not change who I fundamentally was or how I viewed myself.But for the average Leftist, their sense of self is fundamentally tied to their belief they are a good person because they believe certain things. That belief system is constantly reinforced by their peers and their enemedia intake. Force them to confront a belief founded on flawed information, their very personalities are threatened as you are undermining their view of themselves as “good people”.This is, by the way, why the Left so nastily attacks conservative ideas – for fear that the above revelation, as happened to me, might happen to others. Take their utter hatred for Rush Limbaugh (and Conservative talk radio in general). For years I had heard only the worst about him. Racist. Misogynist. Selfish. Hater!!!!!!!!! I very deliberately avoided listening to him because of what my peers said about him. One day I was radio-channel surfing in my car and I stumbled across a man talking. I didn’t know who he was, but he had a nice voice and what he said intrigued me. I listened to him, agreeing with most everything and accepting the well-laid-out persuasiveness of his argumentation on the remainder, when he identified himself before a commercial break.I was utterly floored. I had been assured that Rush was one small step away from the Devil Himself, but I’m agreeing with him. Again, that’s weird…; Rush had two books out – The Way Things Ought to Be and See, I Told You So – so I bought them at a used book store and devoured them. Wow. Even, at the time, still believing myself a liberal I found very little to disagree with him. It was then that I realized: maybe I’m not a liberal.What do both events, and others, have in common? That I was willing to accept information that didn’t match what I already “knew” was true, because changing my mind didn’t affect my core perception of who I was. Compare and contrast this with a Leftist who is confronted with, say, strong and hard evidence that “global warming” is a fraud; even with charts, graphs, data, etc., they will not accept the information – even if published in peer-reviewed venues – because to accept that their core belief about saving the world from eeeeeevil CO2 is wrong, would mean they are no longer a good person.THE LEFTIST MINDTo sum up, the average Leftist:
- Has beliefs, but these beliefs are more based on what is popular amongst people with whom they associate, rather than stemming from true conviction.
- Holds beliefs that form the foundation of why they believe they are good people; any questioning of one of their beliefs is taken as an attack on their goodness – not just on the belief itself.
- Will twist themselves into pretzels to explain away hard and provable information that contradicts those beliefs lest they not only undermine their sense of self, but risk exclusion from The Collective.
- Is quite literally a drug (dopamine) addicts looking for their next fix, which drives them to ever-greater extremes of Leftism to get lauded as the edge constantly moves farther Left.The above essay and bullet points yield clues about potential strategies to deal with them in a debate, which is a whole different essay… as this has gotten a lot longer than I planned; my apologies.L’nitzakhon. (To Victory.)
Monday, July 10, 2017
The Leftist Sense of Self
- Guest Blogger Nitzakhon
Posted by Dave in PB at 2:00 AM