Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Anger Gambit

     Quite a bit of our political discourse is, to put it non-discoursively, nothing but shouting. The participants, whether consciously or otherwise, simply reject the use of facts and reasoning. They shout by preference.

     Time was, this was not considered acceptable conduct in a discussion intended to establish which of two policy directions was the preferable one. Today it appears to be the default route. Moreover, Left-inclined persons typically adopt it from the outset of any exchange, under the pretense of having been “triggered.”

     This video, supplied by commenter Brinster, provides an example. Though it’s unpleasant to watch, the illustration it provides is valuable:

     The young black woman who leaps into the fray screeching about how she’ll owe a substantial amount of money for her college education while her white contemporaries won’t – a dubious assertion, to say the least – is practicing the Anger Gambit. It’s a tough thrust to parry, because for some decades now whites have been conditioned to respond to an angry outburst with conciliation, especially when the angry person is black. This overlooks the tactical nature of the outburst. It is essentially tactical rather than sincere even if the speaker is sincerely angry.

     There is no calm-yet-profitable way to reply to such an outburst. Conciliation is the least desirable route, as it tends to ratify the speaker’s complaint as legitimate and relevant. That is seldom the case in political discourse.

     Yet consider the roots of the speaker’s complaint, assuming it’s factual:

  • She attends a college that charges tuition and fees, as most such do.
  • Her earnings and savings aren’t adequate to meet those charges.
  • Her parents, assuming they’re alive, can’t or won’t defray the balance.

     Look at the assumptions behind those assertions:

  • She assumes she has a right to attend that college.
  • She assumes that other people have an obligation to pay for it.
  • She assumes that being black will protect her from counterfire.

     The appalling thing is that such assumptions go unquestioned far more often than not. But would it be effective to respond as follows:

  • “What makes you think you have a right to go to college?”
  • “Why didn’t you work and save for a few years, so you could afford it?”
  • “Why are white people responsible for giving you what you want at no cost to you?”

     Scorn and laughter will occasionally carry the day against the Anger Gambit – but seldom. They must issue from someone of impervious confidence and bearing. White men with such qualifications are rare in our time.

     Central to all this is our reluctance to meet anger with anger.


     I am a racist, a sexist, an ableist, a homophobe, and an Islamophobe. I admit it freely. Able-bodied white Christian heterosexual males built Western Civilization. Non-whites, non-Christians, homosexuals, the handicapped, and women have made only minor contributions, though they enjoy the benefits. If they can’t afford or partake of some of the benefits, it’s no fault of ours.

     That attitude equips me to meet the Anger Gambit with heavy counterfire of a sort that’s rare in such exchanges. It’s also why I rarely involve myself in such exchanges. They have a nasty habit of descending to violence. I dislike the consequences of interpersonal violence, even when all the bleeding and broken limbs accrue to the other party.

     But counterfire, even when the consequences are successfully weathered, doesn’t change anyone’s mind. If third parties, unpersuaded prior to the exchange, are listening, they’re likely to walk away thinking “A pox on both their houses.” So from the perspective of one who seeks improvement rather than the mere visceral satisfaction of meeting provocation with a good vent, there’s no point.

     In consequence, there’s essentially no discourse remaining. Instead, the Left keeps screeching to “keep the hate alive.” The reaction on the Right is usually something like this:

     I’m increasingly pissed off by what I’m seeing and I resent the people behind it. Guys like Juan Williams should be on TV demanding the cops round up every last Charlotte rioter and pack them off to Africa. The rich black guys on TV talking sportsball should be mortified that their co-ethnics are embarrassing their race with these antics. If the roles were reversed and it was whites making asses of themselves, you can be sure the honkies on TV would be furious and embarrassed, demanding a halt to it.

     That’s not how it works and that’s what is getting tiresome. Those two black girls get the idea in their heads to make a nuisance of themselves in the street and I’m supposed to feel guilty about it. Frankly, Glenn Reynolds was right. Let’s have a few motorists drive over these people and then we can talk about feeling guilty. Let’s have the cops unleash the dogs and water cannon on these rioters and then talk to me about feeling guilty. I’ll be happy to feel guilty as long as the streets are clear.

     I’ve simply had enough.

     Open-if-insincere anger versus repressed-but-justified anger. Who wins?


     Mind you, this is not an argument against getting angry. It’s about what anger-in-discourse means and how it can be used.

     The Left’s adoption of a politics of division compels them to brandish anger as their principal weapon. And to the extent that it gains its objectives, it will be emulated and intensified.

     To prevent Leftist anger-in-discourse from gaining its objectives, we must meet anger with anger – and our anger must be of incomparably greater magnitude.

     There’s already a perceptible movement in that direction. Whites are sick and tired for being blamed for the myriad failures of American blacks. Christians are sick and tired of being persecuted de facto for their beliefs. Men have pretty much had it with feminists and their endless shrill denunciations. And so on.

     It’s a start, but only a start. It must grow, and become vocal, and to the extent required by circumstances – girls, hold onto your boyfriends -- it must meet violence with superior force.

     That will be a sticking point for many, who prefer to leave “that sort of thing” to the politicians, organizers, and commentators (and the superior force part, of course, to “the authorities”). However, dealing ourselves out because we’re private persons who “just want to be left alone” is no longer viable...especially as “the authorities” are tacitly complicit in the Left’s tactics. Consider the “official” reactions to the rioting in Ferguson, Baltimore, Charlotte, and Milwaukee.

     Paddy Chayevsky’s Howard Beale had the right idea:

     I don't have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It's a depression. Everybody's out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel's worth, banks are going bust, shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter. Punks are running wild in the street and there's nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there's no end to it. We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat, and we sit watching our TV's while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that's the way it's supposed to be.

     We know things are bad - worse than bad. They're crazy. It's like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don't go out anymore. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we are living in is getting smaller, and all we say is, 'Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials and I won't say anything. Just leave us alone.' Well, I'm not gonna leave you alone. I want you to get mad! I don't want you to protest. I don't want you to riot - I don't want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn't know what to tell you to write. I don't know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street. All I know is that first you've got to get mad. You've got to say, 'I'm a HUMAN BEING, God damn it! My life has VALUE!'

     So I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window. Open it, and stick your head out, and yell, 'I'M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!' I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell - 'I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!' Things have got to change. But first, you've gotta get mad!... You've got to say, 'I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!' Then we'll figure out what to do about the depression and the inflation and the oil crisis. But first get up out of your chairs, open the window, stick your head out, and yell, and say it: "I'M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!"

     But yelling out the window mustn’t be the end of it. The Anger Gambit is too resilient to be defeated that way.

     Give it some thought.

7 comments:

  1. I can't help thinking, "I never owned any slaves, and you never picked any cotton."

    ReplyDelete
  2. First, I have been enjoying your blog tremendously. I'll look into your novels as soon as I've worked through the stack-in-waiting currently on the Kindle. But, Good Lord do I know the anger. When I look around it seems as though I've awakened in some badly written dystopic sci-fi novel where everything is inverted, and the government and machines control it all. My perspective is somewhat skewed compared to that of everyone I know. This is because I haven't had TV in my house for decades. I don't have a smart phone, just a walkie-talkie flip model. I get my news and information on line.
    I didn't make it very far in the video. I have enough anger and disgust without needing to add more to my day. The fat negro doesn't belong in a university anymore than I belong in the NBA. But she is very typical of the blacks I have encountered. Abysmally stupid, self righteous, aggrieved, and wholly and totally impervious to reason. Dey knows wut dey knows and they ain't no cunvinssin' 'em udderwise. Beside- yoo rayciss. But I am not the only one feeling the rage. We all talk in code words until we get a hint that the one with whom we're speaking has been red-pilled. And then it comes out in torrents. We are living in what I call "The Great Inversion". There will come a reckoning.

    JWM

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for the acknowledgement Francis. This sort of thing is happening in more than one institution of higher learning. Yeah, white kids get free college, don't have to struggle, and live blissful lives free of worry. Not to mention (keep this under your hat), we white guys get $125,000 tax free when we turn 21!

    JWM, you are absolutely right. There will be more Charlottes. No telling when a white cop decides to assassinate an innocent black guy. Two things about the Keith Lamont Scott killing: The cops repeatedly telling him to drop the gun, and Mrs. Scott shouting "don't do it Keith" at least three times. Don't do what? Break dance?

    God help us all.

    ReplyDelete
  4. There's a quote by Sun Tzu that effectively goes "Better to underestimate yourself and overestimate the enemy and be surprised with the outcome, than the other way around". Using the scientific method and basic logic, the 'right' in this country and others, assumes it can use rational, non-violent methods to achieve its logical and rational goals. Would it make sense for a logical, rational and 'fair' person to use violent means to achieve their goals at the drop of a hat? - No,of course not. And yet this is where we find the left currently. The left will always side with blacks when they riot because they are using irrational, self destructive violent means to achieve irrational and destructive goals. The left will even side with the meteor worshiping death cult when one of its believers kills 50 in a gay nightclub, essentially the ultimate leftists conundrum, two 'minorities' in flux, directly negating leftist 'logic' and undermining core leftist beliefs. The reaction in turn was to blame guns of course and bury it. Not to mention the executioners father, smiling, and front row center behind the traitorous snake at one of her rallies. Without digressing further, you mentioned a fundamental flaw that has been addressed for thirty +years in the 'movement', which is essentially that just prepping, turtling and hiding 'innawoods' will miraculously save liberty and your family. This is not only a cowardice cop-out, it's always dead wrong and akin to the kind of spinelessness that we see when hordes of millions of fighting aged males leave their suffering, starving families to rot in the desert, so that they may pursue the ultimate prize, a white woman's womb. The solution of course, is to become a target, sacrifice it all, believe in the divine providence of god,nature, the universe or whatever else, because standing for liberty, justice, and the principles that Washington did,and put his life on the line for, are more worthy a cause then chasing the HEMI pickup and a bigger flat screen. The left is willing to die for these self destructive, genocidal beliefs. Are you, and in turn the 'right', willing to die for truths that have been made self evident, in the kingdom of nature, man, the universe and God?

    ReplyDelete
  5. JWM- you're right there; I could have written that pretty much word for word.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Your post is excellent. You may consider the "Kafkatrapping" concept as part of the method of Politically Korrect forcing of opinion on people. You can read about it at http://esr.ibiblio.org/?p=2122 and consider the implications.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Another good rant

    http://thezman.com/wordpress/?p=8635

    I’ve simply had enough. I’m all blacked out. I’m tired of the blame shifting and excuse making. I’m tired of seeing people, who know better, lying to me on TV. Those rich sportsball talkers ain’t living in my neighborhood. They are as far away from the Black Lives Matter types as possible. They live in gated communities with the honkies. Their honky cohorts on TV are not even driving through my neighborhood. They are despicable hypocrites, who deliberately say things on television that make our lives worse.

    Black America does not have a race problem. It ain’t honkies robbing, looting and killing in the ghetto. They don’t have a cop problem. The cops shoot fewer black offenders than white offenders. They don’t have a gun problem either. Black America has a black guy problem. They have far too many black guys robbing, looting and killing, almost always doing so at the expense of blacks. They won’t let me fix that problem, so stop demanding I feel bad about it. I’m done. I’m all blacked out.

    ReplyDelete

Comments are moderated. I am entirely arbitrary about what I allow to appear here. Toss me a bomb and I might just toss it back with interest. You have been warned.