Monday, June 20, 2011

A Featured Reader Comment on the Power of Willful Denial (Continued): Of Genocide and the Barbaric and Ruthless Efficiency of the Corporation



Barbaric and ruthless efficiency.

Corporations have no ethics, or friends, or patriotic loyalties. Given that fact, it is tragically funny that so many still pray at the altar of the free market and view the invisible hand as a force that works for the common good.

The bottom line and the dollar is all that matters to the Corporation. From the economies of scale necessary to support the Transatlantic Slave Trade, to the "human traffic management program" of the death camps, ingenuity in the service of exploitation and death dealing seems to know no limits.

For all of our enlightened talk, and the musings of lessons learned in the aftermath of World War 2, I do wonder if civilization has progressed all that much, or if we are only a system shock away from descending into a primal abyss.

On that point, Daniel had a wonderfully reflective comment on today's earlier post that is worth bringing up to the top for more discussion:
What can one take from the Shoah? From Rwanda? From South Africa? From the U.S. and Native Americans? That humans are capable of the most unspeakable horrors, that individual virtue, as important as it is, is typically an inadequate buffer against groupthink and authority (think Milgram), that evil is truly banal (the agenda at Wannsee indicated a morning meeting to discuss the murder of the remaining Jews in Europe and then noted that breakfast was scheduled)? That liberal education is no proof against such evil (9 of the 14 attendees at Wannsee held doctorates)?
Very dense. We have questions of nature or nurture; the shield and inoculation of "education" against evil; and making sense of some of humanity's greatest crimes. I wonder, is humankind more good than it has any reason being, or are these lapses into mass killing the true face of the homo sapien?

Perhaps old Sigmund Freud was right in his Civilization and its Discontents, that we need society and rules to control our most base impulses because we are at the core irrational and monstrous:

27 comments:

CNu said...

I wonder, is humankind more good than it has any reason being, or are these lapses into mass killing the true face of the homo sapien?

It's the "true face" of the status-seeking social primate - all the way down to the primitive little meerkat.

The human ranchers have understood and exploited the nature of their herds for a very, very, very long time - and their human husbandry skills have undergone a quantum leap in efficiency and efficacy over the past 500 years, with special acceleration over the past 100 with the advent of mass media and mass communications...,

Daniel Goldberg said...

Wow, elevated to a post on WARN. You do me far too much honor, CDV.

Thanks.

Oh Crap said...

@DG

What can one take from the Shoah? From Rwanda? From South Africa? From the U.S. and Native Americans? That humans are capable of the most unspeakable horrors, that individual virtue, as important as it is, is typically an inadequate buffer against groupthink and authority (think Milgram), that evil is truly banal (the agenda at Wannsee indicated a morning meeting to discuss the murder of the remaining Jews in Europe and then noted that breakfast was scheduled)?

Honestly? I've given up on the concept of "never again". At this point, post-Apartheid, post-Rwanda, post-Srebenica, post-Shoah, post-Killing Fields, post-Iran/Contra, post post post, it's just a slogan backed by a wish.

The issue today is how to transform that wish into "it stops with me."

Daniel Goldberg said...

@OC: No argument. I'm not much for that slogan.

CNu said...

The issue today is how to transform that wish into "it stops with me."

lol,

That would require a mass transition to real religious practice and official sanction for real religious freedom.

Since neither one of you scholars can put your finger on exactly what that entails...., yes, it is an utterly and completely lost cause and the human ranchers will once again accomplish their ugly herd-culling business - and on a scale never previously witnessed.

How do "teachers" of religious rubrics rest easy at night - knowing full-well that they are at a complete and total loss to explain the material they are presenting to impressionable young heads full of mush?

When you sincerely answer the question concerning how you could perpetrate such a colossal hoax on those you purport to teach, you will have more closely approached the answer to why the next cull is an inevitability, will be of such epochal proportions, and its victims won't have any inkling about what is headed their way...,

Oh Crap said...

@CNu, I'm not a scholar or teacher, so I'm not sure what you're on about.

CNu said...

My bad OC...,

I'd taken for granted that the bulk of CDV's coterie was comprised of the higher edu leisure class.

As for what I'm on about, why of course it'd be the only proven - and therefore heavily suppressed - means of mass transformation of consciousness.

Oh Crap said...

@CNu

Have you taken any Religious Studies courses? If not, they might surprise you. RS is not seminary or religious practitioner training. The material presented is never theological or explanatory in nature ("descriptive" might be a more accurate term). Theology and "religion" the way it's taught in higher ed are two different things.

CNu said...

The material presented is never theological or explanatory in nature

How could it be otherwise?

("descriptive" might be a more accurate term). Theology and "religion" the way it's taught in higher ed are two different things.

mmm, hmm...,

both the functional equivalent of training for a mixed martial arts contest by playing rock'm sock'm robots, or watching somebody else play rock'm sock'm robots....,

which is precisely why either camp full of maroons can abide the patently ridiculous propositional nature of contemporary "religious" praxis.

neither the theological or the religious studies camps has even the barest inkling of what they're on about - in my estimation - these hoaxsters are the only ones I know whose mendacity exceeds that of economists - and who subserve much the very same role - OBSCURANTIC PRESERVATION OF ELITE RULE via systematic fraud perpetuation.

CNu said...

The power of willful denial of genuine religious praxis and the barbaric and ruthless efficiency of the theological and religious studies establishments...,

Oh Crap said...

Lol what "theological and religious studies establishments"?

They're just academic disciplines like any other. Nothing special about either.

CNu said...

They're just academic disciplines like any other. Nothing special about either.

Surely you jest...,

How many theology departments aren't funded by church denominations, and how many religious studies departments aren't similarly tainted by the same underlying influences?

Please, just provide a few examples to show that somewhere there exists an objective 4th leg to this 3-legged stool of data, denial, and vested interests - a 4th leg capable of clinically and objectively evaluating the ethological structure and function of religion?

It doesn't exist.

That's why there's so painfully little transparency and understanding when it comes to this topic.

Once escaped from the propositional forest, and free to look at the thing in itself, it's almost trivially self-explanatory.

Oh Crap said...

Unless a RS department is at a religious or church university it's secular. Why would you think they have the same "underlying influences"?

Lol, you really ought to go to your local community college and take just one course. The first thing you'll learn in Religion 101 is that none of it's "objective" and good luck trying.

But I suppose I'll have to endure more of these empty insistences you have bigger better faster more understanding than anyone else. You keep saying stuff like that, but I don't believe you. I'm even willing to bet you don't care.

Kant's your man for things in themselves, so is Heidegger. You'd like them, if you haven't read them. In fact, we would not be having this little convo about "Religious Studies" without them.

CNu said...

Lol, you really ought to go to your local community college and take just one course. The first thing you'll learn in Religion 101 is that none of it's "objective" and good luck trying.

lol,

One doesn't look to the humanities for anything objectively useful (i.e., scientific)

The religion in question here has had an easily discerned common underlying objective going as far back with the peoples of the book as it's possible to go.

Corporations have no ethics, or friends, or patriotic loyalties. Given that fact, it is tragically funny that so many still pray at the altar of the free market and view the invisible hand as a force that works for the common good.

Corporations owe their existence to the objective work of a real religionist - see John Dee's evocation of the egregore.

Kant's your man for things in themselves, so is Heidegger. You'd like them, if you haven't read them. In fact, we would not be having this little convo about "Religious Studies" without them.

You might not have a diletantte's "bone in your nose" miseducation about religion if you'd managed to avoid those two propositional frauds...,

CNu said...

But I suppose I'll have to endure more of these empty insistences you have bigger better faster more understanding than anyone else. You keep saying stuff like that, but I don't believe you.

lol,

I love that OC spunk!!!

I'm even willing to bet you don't care.

Quite right. I am, however, greatly amused.

Oh Crap said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Oh Crap said...

Feh, preview THEN post, OC.

Redo:

You might not have a diletantte's "bone in your nose" miseducation about religion if you'd managed to avoid those two propositional frauds...,

I see you still believe engagement with ideas means personal acceptance and belief in them, so I'm guessing you did not see the response in the other thread.

Of course they're full of crap. That's what makes them so much fun. And none of us in this society can escape Plato and Pythagoras. Sadly. It's even reflected in your last post. I like the humanities for similar reasons that you hate it. Poets REALLY work the nerves of the absolutist/idealist. I think it's funny.

From your link:

The growth of European\ science in the Renaissance and afterwards was influenced by contributions from the Islamic world and from India and China.

Yeah, it's that old joke/not-joke we used to tell: Europeans went on the Crusades, and came back with math and science. It's not a new idea.

Your entire view of yesterday's/today's topic is just a re-do of the same old book-based literalism that plagues our entire culture, regardless of what anyone "believes". I'm no less or more miseducated in it than you or anyone else, especially if you truly believe (which I doubt) we're all just apes in the end.

So this silly one-upmanship of one has once again ended up where we often land, with you playing whose is bigger with a dumm ol' gurll. :p

Now for why you believe Religion departments are tainted by, uh, whatever you said it was. How would you know?

CNu said...

Your entire view of yesterday's/today's topic is just a re-do of the same old book-based literalism that plagues our entire culture, regardless of what anyone "believes". I'm no less or more miseducated in it than you or anyone else, especially if you truly believe (which I doubt) we're all just apes in the end.

The generativity of language-based subjective self-awareness demonstrates that we have possibilities in excess of what those other simians got.

Where that generativity comes from and how it can be utilized is always and everywhere the stuff of real and true religion.

As Arthur C. Clarke said of the motives of the First Born, "mind is the most precious thing in the Universe".

That the historical record persuasively shows a collective preference (or an elite governance preference) for wallowing in the lowest common denominator barbarian culture of killer-apes - rather than the metaphysical precincts of real and true religious work - shouldn't really be a controversial assertion.

That the killer-apes fit'na do what they do best - driven by either the perception or the reality of resource constraints effecting their non-negotiable conspicuous consumption - should also not come as any surprise to anybody paying attention to their apish antics.

{personally, I study the hairy, nitpicking, butt-sniffing muhphuggaz like it was my job...., because they're known to be quite dangerous}

So this silly one-upmanship has once again ended up where we often land, with you playing whose is bigger with a girl.

lol,

Don't become a stereotype OC with this "playing whose is bigger with a girl" canard.

Our exchange is only one-upsmanship if you presume that we're equals in our knowledge and understanding of the subject matter.

While I can easily understand why you might make such a presumption, I'd recommend you open your mind to the possibility that your baseline could be flawed and that I'm gently pointing you in the direction of something unfamiliar to you that is very much worth your consideration.

What have you got to lose?

Now I can't just come out and tell you this unfamiliar something lest I run the risk of having your Saul on the road to Damascus moment discounted as just more "playing whose is bigger with a girl" one-upsmanship.

As for my motives, you needn't worry about those until and unless you receive a personal email soliciting tithes..., (^;

CNu said...

Now for why you believe Religion departments are tainted by, uh, whatever you said it was.

OBSCURANTIC PRESERVATION OF ELITE RULE via systematic fraud perpetuation.

How would you know?

Cursory review of their syllabi noting what they exclude/suppress.

Back in the day when I first took note of the existence of afrodemic afrofuturism, I had a cordial relationship with a pair of technocreative cronies who called the taxonomic habits of google search "Frank" - short for Frankenstein - as in the monster.

They would put on regular demonstrations of the "hidden racism" of Google.

Priceless comedy gold..., and most informative too.

These interwebs and undernets are a masterpiece of unintended cultural and collective psychological self-disclosure.

The way you know that Religious Studies departments and Schools of Theology have been co-opted to serve the preservation of elite rule is quite simply by the "hidden in plain sight" material that they omit and/or suppress.

CNu said...

Frank....,

Oh Crap said...

Cursory review of their syllabi


Yeah, about like I thought. Take a course if you ever get a chance. It might/not surprise you, dunno. Anyway, were you on Afrofuturism, with Harry Allen and all them? I was for a while but that was in the bygone era of the mid-late 90s, so long ago I don't even remember what name I made my littl 4 posts under. :/

Oh Crap said...

Our exchange is only one-upsmanship if you presume that we're equals in our knowledge and understanding of the subject matter.

Well no, I've nothing to prove about my knowledge and understanding of the subject matter. That's what makes your tantrum-like, namecalling, indignant posts silly one-upmanship. I find it funny.

While I can easily understand why you might make such a presumption, I'd recommend you open your mind to the possibility that your baseline could be flawed and that I'm gently pointing you in the direction of something unfamiliar to you that is very much worth your consideration.

What have you got to lose?


I will if you will.

Take a class, learn something about an entire discipline you've written off, based on cursory knowledge.

Deal? I didn't think so.

Now I can't just come out and tell you this unfamiliar something lest I run the risk of having your Saul on the road to Damascus moment discounted as just more "playing whose is bigger with a girl" one-upsmanship.

Relax, it's just a running gag, nothing to take literally or seriously.

OTOH, I'm somewhat disappointed, CNu. You ought to know by now OC is no stranger to crises of faith.

Neither are most other sentient, mature adults.

CNu said...

Well no, I've nothing to prove about my knowledge and understanding of the subject matter. That's what makes your tantrum-like, namecalling, indignant posts silly one-upmanship. I find it funny.

lol,

tantrum-like, namecalling, indignant..,

I've stated a simple fact that folk credentialed to profess their knowledge of religion, who profess said knowledge in propositional terms, don't know what they're talking about, at all. I will give one final try to restate this characterization in terms you might understand, your theological and religious studies functionaries are the equivalent of "flat-earthers". I realize that it's jarring to be told that an enterprise that you take somewhat seriously, whose pronouncements you recommend to others, can be dismissed as "wrong as it's humanly possible to be" about the nature of the thing they've spent their lives looking at, and about the history of the thing they've spent their lives looking at - but sadly, that's the way it is.

OTOH, I'm somewhat disappointed, CNu. You ought to know by now OC is no stranger to crises of faith. Neither are most other sentient, mature adults.

rotflmbao...,

crises of faith = the earth is flat

As Fr. John Romanides would have put it, "faith is a neurobiological sickness".

One who is both sentient and mature ought to know better than to take anything on "faith"

Like any other mature discipline, there is an underlying science here easily discernable by its works/proofs - just as during the many centuries in which flat-earth ignorance and superstition prevailed as the official worldview, there always remained a gnostic minority who knew better and preserved and transmitted their knowledge for the benefit of present and future generations, carefully hidden in plain sight - lest the authorities punish them for their heretical understanding.

CNu said...

I'll take one final crack at trying to help you understand our relative positions with regard to this subject OC.

Do racists have faith in their beliefs about the inferiority, nay "speciation" of races deemed other/inferior?

Are racists mistaken in their beliefs?

Do you find it difficult/frustrating to engage/inform/persuade racists/racialist believers of the error(s) of their ways?

All of what you understand wrt racist "errors of cognition" and more, applies to my understanding of common but very widespread and officially sanctioned "errors of cognition" giving rise to the propositiional religious and religious studies establishments.

Just like the racist has to experientially figure it out for him/herself - so also the person deluded as to the nature of, history of, and cultivation of the human religious impulse...,

Oh Crap said...

I've stated a simple fact that folk credentialed to profess their knowledge of religion, who profess said knowledge in propositional terms, don't know what they're talking about, at all.

That is a belief, not a fact.

Do you find it difficult/frustrating to engage/inform/persuade racists/racialist believers of the error(s) of their ways?

...

Just like the racist has to experientially figure it out for him/herself - so also the person deluded as to the nature of, history of, and cultivation of the human religious impulse...


Terrible analogy. On a personal level, I don't bother trying to engage/inform/persuade racists or other sour grapes anti-intellectuals out of their deeply cherished beliefs, including those people convinced of the superiority of their self-delusions. Why should I?

Anonymous said...

This may open your eyes guys

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dVmwoR24rc