Bloody Shovel 3

We will drown and nobody shall save us

Posts tagged as: culture

On Drilling

Aretae writes how he likes my insight but disagrees with my position. He hates drilling "with a white hot passion". Actually I do too. Bores me to death. Actually, and I guess Aretae feels the same too, drilling offends me. Because I don't need it. I understand all those dull kids around me probably needed to be drilled to get a handle on what was taught, but I didn't. I was always ahead. And receiving equal treatment made me mad. I deserved better.

Still that doesn't mean that drilling should simply be made away with. I argued against it here. The fact remains that 80% of people need drilling to learn any skill set. But not just skills, just about every concept our brains manage is imprinted. Language, identity, all is created by large scale drilling. The very fact that nation states exist says a lot about the power of drilling. Nations are defined as any group of people who have a shared history, culture and blood ties. But that's patently false. Nations are a group of people who have been drilled into thinking that they share a history, culture and blood ties. An inhabitant of Nice has no more history, culture and blood in common with someone from Calais, than it has with someone from Torino. Garibaldi, the Italian nationalist was from Nice! But alas, in 1860, not than long ago, Napoleon III seized the area, and a...

On Kindness

Professor Charlton writes that our society is very nice.

Modern society exceeds all previous societies in terms of its kindness - it is the least-cruel society ever. Naturally - if we focus on this single virtue to the neglect of all other virtues and sins, then we can regard ourselves as more virtuous than anybody else.

It caught my attention, not only because its rare to read Professor Charlton praising any aspect of modern society, but because it reminded me of a quote by the late Aldous Huxley, who said:

It's rather embarrassing to have given one's entire life to pondering the human predicament and to find that in the end one has little more to say than, 'Try to be a little kinder.'

As much as I admire Huxley, I thought he was being too clever there. He never thought about kindness when he was young, and admired beauty and boldness. He only thought of it when he grew old, and needed people to be kind to him.

But the concept of modern society as kind especially reminds me of the last chapter in Kenneth Clark's Civilisation series, which I blogged about a while ago. He talks among other things of the birth of kindness as a social value:

It's an almost incredible fact, tha...

Tribes and Jobs

With all the late talk about median wages falling and the rich getting richer, it seems capitalism is becoming unfashionable again. Now I don't define capitalism by any economic or policy parameter. I define capitalism as the system that supports and gives status to business owners. When you see students demonstrating against "capitalism", they aren't arguing against private property. They won't share their precious iPhones, will they? They're cool about people owning stuff. What they don't want is status linked to the amount of property you own. I think this theory applies to the golden age of the labour movement a hundred years ago.

As a non billionaire with little interest in sleeping 4 hours a day and donating millions to sodomy activists to become one, I am naturally inclined to sympathise with the anticapitalists. Not only wages are going down, hours are going up,  and the poor fuckers who can still find a job are caught in a rat race of who is able to outwork others and lick more ass while convincing themselves they love it. It's harsh.

So the push for higher taxes on rich people and higher median wages is understandable, if simplistic. But that's only one part of the picture. As easy as it is to blame everything on business, workers are a handful themsel...