Archive for October 24, 2021

The Diminishing Contact of Western Liberals with Physical Reality: 3

October 24, 2021 57 comments

In the previous post of this series, I made the point that so-called “intellectuals” are far more susceptible to groupthink and other mindless fads which demonstrate their mental limitations than people who work with their hands. Then again, the “intellectual” class of all societies throughout history (from priests and brahmins of yore to managers and bureaucrats of today) have always been parasites whose lifestyle was supported by grifting off productive members of society.. you know the people who actually perform the real work. This problem has been greatly exacerbated in past 40 years, especially in the west, as the number of these clueless parasites had greatly increased. To make things worse, almost all of the previously productive and innovative institutions in those societies are now full of these parasites, to the general detriment of the functionality and reputation of those institutions.

Now let us talk about MikeCA- specifically his fixation with “Russian conspiracies” against this country. Based on some of his earlier comments on this blog and others, it is reasonable to assume that the person in question is indeed a recently retired programmer with a long career in Silly Valley. So how does a person who is definitely not brain-damaged or retarded believe that everything which contradicts his self-selected “liberal” world-view is the result of “foreign misinformation” and “Russian conspiracies”. And more importantly, why would he want to keep believing in those fairly tales even after Biden assumed office in 2021? To make matters more interesting, MikeCA is not alone in wanting to desperately believe in that bullshit. Recently, even a minor liberal TV “celebrity” such as Bill Maher was desperately trying to convince himself that “Putin” and “Russia” were definitely behind Trump’s win in 2016.

But back to MikeCA.. how does somebody with above-average intelligence and ability to think rationally (at least in his field) believe in what can be charitably described as adult fairy tales? Why does the skepticism he can demonstrate in his field of expertise not extend to areas even a bit beyond them. To understand what is going on, you have to understand where people such as MikeCA fit on the ideological spectrum. I can bet you a lot of money that he started out as a Reagan Democrat or even a Republican. But so what? Didn’t many of people of a certain age vote for Regan and Bush before voting for Clinton and Obama? Well.. yes, but those who took that specific path and also live in costal states have certain other interesting characteristics. The vast majority of those who went that ideological journey in coastal states are what one might describe as member of the Professional-Managerial Class (PMC) or adjacent professions. Here is a book which explains that phenomena in some detail.

And you can’t really blame them for going in that ideological direction. The period between 1984-2008 was amazing for these people, as they were the only group (other than the “elite”) whose relative income and wealth kept on increasing relative to rest of people in this country. There was no shortage of those jobs and careers, their houses and holiday homes kept on appreciating in value, their investments kept booming, their kids still had a decent chance of getting into “prestigious” universities. You could hire Mexican immigrants for a pittance to do all of the hard and unpleasant work, travel to exotic locations in luxury (especially after 1991). It must have been amazing to be a member of upper-middle class in this country during that period. And then it came to an end after 2008. Of course, inertia kept the party going for a few years more, but by 2013 it was obvious to the smarter members of that group that it was over. But how does that explain MikeCA behaving like a “liberal” reactionary?

To understand that, we have to accept that more people than just parasitic PMCs believed in a certain flavor of neoliberalism. Which brings us to the next question- why am I using “liberal” reactionary to define MikeCA? What do people like him want to preserve? The simple answer is that they want to go back to the 1990s when everything was great for them and the world looked full of endless possibilities. But don’t I also express sentiments about the 1990s being the last great decade for western countries? Yes, I do but with a major difference. See.. I understand that the 1990s and early 2000s were possible because of a unique constellation of factors (cold war over, economic growth in most Asian countries starting, introduction of last generation of truly innovative technologies etc). I understand that it cannot be replicated, though it could have been prolonged for a few more years if Bush hadn’t invaded Iraq in 2003.

The type of beliefs exhibited by self-anointed “liberals” of the PMC or PMC-adjacent (MikeCA) type can be best understood as a reaction to the loss of a fairly straightforward and easy life trajectory enjoyed by them through most of their adult life. In that respect they are not different from all those white blue-collar workers who went Republican after the late-1970s and especially after NAFTA was approved. However unlike members of that group, “liberal” reactionaries have to maintain the pretense of cultural and moral superiority to justify their membership to others of their class. You might have noticed that, over the years, MikeCA more than once mentioned about the solar rooftop panels. I can bet you that he also thinks hybrids automobiles are amazing though they offer very little advantage over conventional cars on the highways and are far harder and expensive to repair. You can bet that he also wears ineffectual face-masks outdoors to blend in with the other members of his class.

It comes down to a combination of posturing and belief. Consider this.. do you really think MikeCA gave a fuck about “Putin” and “Russian interference” as late as the early evening of November 8, 2016? Nope.. because every “smart” person knew that Hillary Clinton was going to win on November 8- and then she lost. Once most people in his social circle tried to blame the outcome on the devil.. I mean “Putin”.. he went along, because people of that class are unusually conformist. This is also why members of the PMC- and PMC-adjacent classes will happily go along with outrageous scams such as critical race theory training sessions, drag-queen story time for little kids, the explosion of trans “rights” and pretty much anything which does not immediately hurt their wallets. But how does this imply that they are losing contact with reality? Let me ask you another question- how many of the rest (and absolute majority) in this country want to all along with such stupid virtue signaling- which is now increasingly hurting them economically (environmentalism)?

Will write more about the degree of groupthink and lack of ideological diversity in opinions exhibited by liberals in the next part.

What do you think? Comments?