Heaven And Hell

There is a theological explanation of heaven and hell that I’d like to borrow for non theological purposes.

So, in hell, everyone has a six foot long spoon, and free soup. No one can eat, because of course you can’t feed yourself with a six foot spoon. BUT in heaven, everyone has a six foot long spoon, and free soup, and everyone is well fed, because they all feed each other.

It’s cute. It’s simple. It sort of makes sense (but not. I mean, look, some of us would be cutting the spoon against some rocks. Using the scraps to make new spoons and selling them for…. something. Others would simply grumph and grab the spoon near the bowl, wildly waving the rest of the handle behind, as a protective shield. (That’s me.)) Except where it doesn’t, because if you’re required to constantly feed others…. well. If it’s heaven you’re all past a redemptive event where everything works. But in the world, with normal humans, you know it just turns to hell, because there’s always that guy, and then it ripples through the whole fabric of society, till no one will feed anyone because “f*ck that guy.”

Note that I’m not Ayn Rand. (Nor even her child by Robert A. Heinlein, whatever that chick who picked a fight with the blog said a few years ago.) I don’t try to fight altruism. Some forms of altruism are not only good, but civilization maintaining or enhancing or even necessary. Like your altruism in marriage guarantees a happy marriage. Each of the spouses should want to make the other happy. (Not unlimited, though, because if you don’t rein each other in, the other becomes a monster.) And the same with children, particularly very young children. If you’re not altruistic in looking after them, you won’t raise them. Then again, if you always do things for them, sacrificing yourself forever, you also raise monsters.

In all things you must strike a happy medium, though she’ll rarely stay happy after you strike her, to be honest.

But what we saw during the covidiocy was the result of extolling that model of heaven. “Well do all this for others, look how wonderful we are.” And that’s great, except for when the entire premise is false and there is no sparing the neighbor by your sacrifice, so you’re just depriving/destroying your life for no reason.

Mind you, I think humans have a built-in need to be self-sacrificing/do things for someone else. Maybe an evolutionary need, because if you weren’t useful to the band, you might end up in the cooking pot when things went wrong.

Which brings us to the whole heaven and hell thing again.

I realized recently that the left is inherently very unhappy. No seriously. We can be unhappy ABOUT this and that. And humans are humans, and sometimes we get very unhappy for a while. BUT the left are unhappy all the time.

I have found myself talking to people I considered sane and nice, and suddenly they start talking about how everyone needs to die/there needs to be an extinction level event for…. reasons, and only then will we have paradise.

The reasons range from of course, overpopulation/gaia/etc. to things like “because that’s the only thing that will cure us of capitalism” or “so the smart people are the only ones that survive” or whatever.

The reason is actually unimportant, what comes through in rage-flecked spite is that what they are in it for is the destruction. That’s what makes their soul sing.

How angry do you have to be to be that hateful at all of humanity, sometimes all of existence?

It took me a while to figure out how it was even possible. And then I realized…. They live in a very frustrating world. First of all, they thing that the metaphor for heaven really is, and really works, every time and perfectly, and they should feed and be fed, or even not feed, and just be fed, because why not. And everything will be perfect.

And the world is never perfect. And they’re frustrated. And they imagine that it’s perfect for other people: whiter people. People who are richer. People who aren’t them.

Because no one ever told them “Life is pain, princess. Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something.”

Now, this isn’t an absolute, anymore than life is perfect is an absolute. It is just that life is mixed. There is no perfection. Ups and downs.

And if you think you’re having a really hard time, maybe you are, but probably there are people out there having more challenges and doing better. Same as there are a lot doing a lot worse.

Imagining that everyone has it easier just messes society — and you.

Until you hate everyone who is not you, or you think that everyone has it better.

And then you want to kill them for whatever reason, including because you think the landscape would be prettier without them.

And that’s a good way to go to hell while looking for heaven.

145 thoughts on “Heaven And Hell

  1. They’re coming to take me away ha ha,
    They’re coming to take me away ho ho, hee hee, ha ha
    To the Funny Farm where life is beautiful all the time and,
    I’ll be so happy to see those nice young men in their clean white coats
    And they’re coming to take me away Ha Haaaaaaa!

    Would that it were that simple! I agree. There are a lot of people who resent anyone who has ‘one thin dime’ more than they do. Usually they are undeveloped souls who are what we call LOSERS.
    Not that I am knocking anyone or anything…

    1. Also… To be clear; A loser is not someone who fails (Boy, Would I be the poster child if it were so…) A loser is someone who never tries, or wants something for nothing, or never learns from their mistakes and usually blames nebulous outside forces for their situations. -Like I would’a been a contenda, but I took the dive for the quick buck – See: Theodore Roosevelt’s essay on the arena.

      OH! and pet peeve #2948: A LOOSER is someone who releases something. What that is I leave to your imagination.

      1. It’s usually stupidity. If they were to lose it once loosed and replace it with something smarter, I wouldn’t mind so much, but it never seems to work that way.

        1. And here we are again, with comments from the phone flying off into the void, never to be seen again. Except for that meanspirited little crack I wish I hadn’t made.

          But this one here’s coming from a regular computer, so we’ll see what happens. (Sorry for the extra comments, if anyone sees this; trying to figure out what the heck is going on.)

        1. Mayhap we’re looking for a tightener? Some sort of hook-and-turnbuckle thingy? Because nobody wants loose cables just flopping about in the breeze.

      1. “When Mum locked me in the coal shed, after the… incident… with the chainsaw and the latex rabbit, and the Girl Guides..in the tent.. she fed me pancakes under the door. She gave me a radio! I’d drool and smile and swivel that dial to the Dr. Demento show. I’ve stayed tuned in for twenty years, but now it’s plain as plain, oh come on Mum, let me out! Compared to ‘im, I’m sane!”

            1. Well, if sitting on your bum until your brain goes numb would prove fatal, at least she would have the solace of knowing her sister would be the first to go, considering where hers is located.
              Be That As it May,
              It became a trope in our family that if so and so did such and such bad behavior, we would lock them in a closet with no carpet. That offer extended, over time to children, dogs, cats, horses, and cows. (No fish)

        1. Hey, at least you got pancakes…

          Way back when I was just a little bitty boy
          I lived in a box under the stairs in
          The corner of the basement of the house
          Half a block down the street from Jerry’s Bait shop
          You know the place

          Well, anyway
          Back then life was going swell and everything was juuuuust PEACHY!

          Except, of course, for the undeniable fact that every single morning
          My mother would make me a big ol’ bowl of sauerkraut for breakfast

          Awww, big bowl of sauerkraut!
          Every single mornin’!
          It was driving me crazy

          I said to my mom
          I said, “Hey, mom, what’s up with all the sauerkraut?”
          And my dear, sweet mother
          She just looked at me like a cow looks at an oncoming train
          And she leaned right down next to me
          And she said, “It’s good for you!”
          And then she tied me to the wall and stuck a funnel in my mouth
          And force fed me nothing but sauerkraut
          Until I was twenty six and a half years old

  2. I heard this once and I wish I could credit the woman I heard it from. “If we all could throw our problems in a big pile, then choose another problem to take out instead, we’d most likely take our own problems back”. I think it’s a good thing to remember when I’m in a self pity mood.

    1. Sometimes it is fair. Sometimes the person who smirks and says life is unfair when it’s, rather, him who is unfair, finds his victims depart as soon as is feasible.

  3. I was going to write about how, yep, everyone needs to die else we’d be kneed deep in chicken feathers, to bake a simile with mixed metaphors but,
    I’ve got 4 inches of fresh snow that needs plowing before it becomes 8 or 12 so
    long.

  4. I’ll be honest, back when I worked at The Supermarket, I walked out of the building after my shift more than once (okay, full disclosure: a LOT more than once) hoping and praying and wishing for an Extinction Level Event to occur. In my defense, our customer base consisted mostly of proto-Karen Leftists and management’s collective view of reality was so messed up that us counter jockeys couldn’t win even if we tried. I swear, the only reason Captain Kirk didn’t believe in a no-win situation was because he never worked customer service.

    But I digress.

    I think that the Modern Leftist is ultimately incapable of happiness. Not just because reality does not and cannot ever meet their idea of perfection, but because their religion (and yes, I believe Leftism has become a religion) demands that they root out and denounce all of the world’s “imperfections,” i.e. things that they or anyone else (except us icky Deplorables, of course), might find offensive. Doesn’t matter how trivial or innocuous the thing is, or how tenuous or nonsensical the alleged offense might be, they MUST find something wrong with it and denounce it loudly and publicly. And if they don’t find something offensive, or somebody else determines said thing to be offensive, then they are clearly not ideologically pure enough and must themselves be denounced. So they have to go around being offended by (or at least pretending to be offended by) everything that doesn’t fall 100% in lockstep with their worldview. And, as a result, they cannot be happy about anything.

    Example: again, back at The Supermarket, the bakery sold iced sugar cookies baked in seasonal shaped w/seasonal icing designs. Snowflakes in winter, butterflies in the spring, turkeys around Thanksgiving, you get the idea. I happened to be the employee that got confronted by an irate proto-Karen who was foaming-at-the-mouth pissed-off about the “racist cookies” we were selling. Said cookie was one of those seasonal cookies shaped and iced like a ladybug. Except, as proto-Karen angrily informed us, the cookie was not, in fact, depicting a ladybug, it was depicting an African-American child eating a slice of watermelon.

    She complained to store management and threatened to call corporate, the news, etc. Nothing ever happened AFAIK, and it was pointless to order the bakery to stop making them because the cookie themes were changing designs from spring to summer the next day anyway.

    But yeah, a Leftist found a ladybug cookie offensive and racist.

    1. “the only reason Captain Kirk didn’t believe in a no-win situation was because he never worked customer service.”

      The more I meet our current Karens, the more I think the Albigensian Crusade had a point.

      Progressives are Cathars. Down to the “if one wrong thing turns up in someone’s past everything good they have done is automatically invalid” – and thus races to rebaptize if one of the Perfecti stumbled.

  5. Hell is going to be full of people who did things “for our own good.” I can’t remember who said it (probably lots of people) but the biggest evil is often done in the name of good. And it’s only too late when they realize that what they were doing was not “for our own good.”

    “The greatest evil is not done in those sordid dens of evil that Dickens loved to paint…but is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clear, carpeted, warmed, well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices.” —C.S. Lewis

    BTW, aside, one of the best explanations of Hell I ever heard was from a sermon years back. Hell is basically God saying to the sinner, “You don’t want Me in your life? Okay. shrug” And he gives the sinner exactly what he wants…a place completely free of God. Never mind that without God’s protection, Satan can do whatever he wants to the sinner. You didn’t want God, so you don’t have Him. You made your decision, now live with it for eternity. (I am not a theologian and I’m not even that great a Christian, no warranty neither express nor implied is granted, your mileage may vary, void in California and where prohibited.)

    1. This brings to mind another quote:

      “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.” — C.S. Lewis


      And a similar one I came up with for a story I’m writing:

      “I don’t think it’s even possible to create a Perfect World, when it has to be full of imperfect people. I don’t think I’d want to live in a Perfect World anyway. What would there be left to do? If the world was Perfect, any change would by definition make it imperfect. Nobody could be allowed to introduce anything new, or retire anything old. I think after a while such eternal sameness would have to become a fair imitation of Hell.”

      “But for the ones that want to create a Perfect World…no cost is too high, no sacrifice too great, no atrocity too horrendous. Their goal is so noble and lofty that it justifies anything — like changing all those imperfect people that don’t fit in their Perfect World. And if they won’t change, if they can’t be made to fit — dispose of them. We’ve seen that, over and over. When you start to learn about this planet’s history, you’re not going to like a lot of it.”

      ———————————
      How can imperfect people create a Perfect World? How could imperfect people live in a Perfect World?

      1. It’s not merely that these moral busybodies have the approval of their conscience when they’re making everyone else miserable; their conscience (if you can call it that) actively DRIVES them to torment. Being unable to control others would be sheer torment to them.

      2. How can imperfect people create a Perfect World? How could imperfect people live in a Perfect World?

        To the first, that’s why Marxists now refuse to be “utopian”, and instead focus on the almost alchemical method of tearing down everything related to the current world. When this is done, and iterated, via the proper gnosis Marxist understanding of historical processes, this will eventually yield the perfect world.

        To the second, read up on “inverse praxis”: where praxis has people changing the world, the inverse means the gradually-perfecting world will also gradually perfect people who can live in it.

        TL;DR:

        Tear down everything.
        ????
        If Utopia has not yet been achieved, return to Step 1.

        1. They believe they can create a Perfect World merely by destroying everything that is not Perfect.

          “In a Perfect World no one would need guns to defend themselves; therefore, if guns are banned, the World will be Perfect!”

          I saw Geraldo Rivera on Watters World yesterday spouting a variation on the same theme: “These ‘mass shootings’ are awful; Something Must Be Done; banning guns is Something; therefore Guns Must Be Banned!”

          That’s what passes for logic on the Left. In fact, that’s a particularly coherent example of what passes for logic on the Left. Most of them make even less sense.
          ———————————
          If you call 9-1-1 and tell them that somebody with a gun is breaking into your house, they will send two cops in 10 or 15 minutes. If you tell them that somebody is breaking into your house and YOU have a gun, they will send 10 or 15 cops in two minutes.

      1. Which very much echoes (one way in space and time or another) a Certain British Writer* at the end of “When Earth’s Last Picture Is Painted” —

        And each, in his separate star,
        Will draw the thing as he sees it.
        For the God of things as they are!

        *Why, J. Rudyard Kipling of course, did you really need to ask, here?

  6. “Well do all this for others, look how wonderful we are.”

    Even if the premise isn’t false like the COVID mask/vax charade, even if it seems everyone is convinced they’re doing good, the truth remains that if somebody has commanded it and opting out isn’t allowed, somebody aims to make you either a prisoner or a slave.

    Has anybody ever made a movie about what happens when the intended victims realize someone has been purposefully turning the knob on the gaslights all along?

  7. My particular clinging sin is envy. I have to remind myself that envy means I think Himself made a mistake and gave my blessing to someone else.

    Mmmm. No. 🙂

    1. At the moment I’m inclining toward sloth, except I failed at it today. 😉

      Envy, wrath, and lust for power seem to be popular at the moment. And of course the classic: pride.

      1. Let us not forget that oft forgotten little sin: despair. The fear that nothing will get better, ever, no matter what you do. Mighty is he who spits in the eye of despair, undaunted, and continues to Do The Right Thing. Especially when the Right Thing is unpopular, hard, dirty, dangerous, and difficult.

        All the sins have their place in the temptation to do good, badly. Sloth, because coupled with despair it destroys motivation. Lust makes energetic fools of men (and women, on occasion). Envy is a poison that eats away at respect, work ethic, and honor. Wrath destroys without thought, and is the tempting path that passion takes when it goes wrong. Gluttony is what lust and envy become when they achieve their goals, thoughtless consumption.

        And pride… Pride is the darker half of the reasonable satisfaction one finds in a job well done. The sin of pride whispers sweet nothings into one’s ear, raising one’s own accomplishments up and lowering the skills, accomplishments, and personhood of others at the same time. One must be able to rationally assess their own life and works without tipping over into such foolishness. A happy medium, indeed.

  8. “and suddenly they start talking about how everyone needs to die/there needs to be an extinction level event for…. ”

    I think of those people as closet sociopaths.

      1. They are not serious people. Telling me we need to end fossil fuels while filming yourself on your iphone from your gasoline powered Honda? Yeah, we see that. Viz: Davos, et al.

  9. The fortunate thing for me is that God stomped the Pharisee out of me.

    [Insert long, boring, TMI cancer story here.]

    So I had all my supports knocked out from under me and had to lean only on God’s grace. And now I’m able to rejoice.

    Thanks, Sarah! Looking forward to more Rhodes.

      1. Well, it is, sadly, a part of the English language now. And while I am sorry if you took it as an attack on yourself; but I was talking about me.

        Also, sadly, the right of free speech means we will all, occasionally, and hopefully unintentionally, offend others and be offended.

        If we ever met, I’d be happy to buy a seasonally-appropriate office beverage;… were you allowed to eat and drink with folks like me.

      1. I know, right. Always felt a little strange about (insert team mascot here) pride as well. Many people (not leftists of course) say, “I’m proud to be an American.” I always say, “I’m lucky to be an American.”

  10. About “Capitalism”. Ask them to define capitalism. I’m sure they can’t come within a country mile of the definition since it’s a slur invented by Marx anyway. Capitalism as Marx described it is death by Communism, just more slowly. Marx defined Capitalism as the control of wealth by the few who try to control everything. That would be those who gather in Davos. “You keep using that word. I don’t think you know what that word means.” (said to them not you Sarah)

    What I, and Adam Smith et all, advocate is Free Enterprise. Everybody gets to freely exchange their labor for money and gets to decide what to do with their earned money and property. How did Bill Gates and George Soros get so rich that retired to tell us plebes what to do? It was through that old Capitalist trick of rigging the markets. Did they suddenly find Jesus? I see no such evidence. They’re still trying to rig the game for their own profit. “You’ll own nothing, and you’ll be happy,” anybody?

    1. Capitalism: people trading stuff with each other, freely.

      Nobody does pure capitalism. But I’d like to get closer to that, than more socialism. Capitalism feeds the world, and raised millions (billions, more like) out of poverty. Socialism kills millions and keeps billions in poverty.

      1. You can’t do pure capitalism because pure capitalism requires everyone to have perfect knowledge. But that’s far easier to approximate than the requirements for perfect communism or even socialism.

  11. Being a retired military guy, making the other guy extinct is the normal method of solving the problem. The reason being that it works, and zero recidivism. Removing the other guy’s ability to fight, either by breaking his toys, or breaking his will, works too; but leaves him around and able to cause problems again at some later point. Unless you manage to recruit him reliably to your side.

    1. @ Mike Houst > “but leaves him around and able to cause problems again at some later point”
      Historically, when a king is dethroned (violently or otherwise), the first act of the usurper is to kill all the old king’s kinfolk, especially sons.
      There’s a reason for that.

  12. My personal discovery about the nature of Hell is that it is simple.

    Seriously. Hell is simple.
    Are you angry? Lash out!
    Are you lustful? Take them however you want!
    Are you hungry? Devour those that would care about you!

    Hell is the simple answer, the “easy” way out, the “nobody will ever know.”

    And, the scary thing is that most people are that kind of simple. It’s discouraging when you hope that more people should be greater than the simple and easy.

    1. More than simple and easy, I think: It’s infantile. Little humans are tiny sociopaths that must be carefully trained to become properly civilized adults.

      Default human nature is all kinds of awful. But there are also the seeds of greatness there, too. Altruism, kindness, responsibility, truthfulness, work ethic, and charity live within the human soul as well. But they need to be trained in order to become the virtues that they might yet be.

      This means that civilization is unnatural. Sounds obvious, right? It is an artifact created by mankind, not nature itself.

      This leads me to believe that leftists are not completely worthless. Because they can be trained, as little infants and toddlers are, with difficulty. Much more difficult when they are grown adults (physically speaking).

      One of the main problems with this is that there are forces with vested interests in keeping leftists’ infantile mentality intact. Thus the opposition when we say, “no, teaching grade school kids about sexual kink and perversions is not only Not A Good Idea, it’s an abusive, awful idea that should be discarded immediately, if not sooner!”

  13. Wow. I used to joke with my soldiers that the way to be happy in the Army is to lower your expectations to the point that they’re already being met.
    I didn’t realize this extended to all of life!
    Now I’m a sad panda. 😉
    Seriously, though, I think you’re definitely on to something. Imagine being told your entire life that if only everyone [INSERT MARXIST DOGMA HERE], the world would be all unicorn farts.
    NO WONDER they’re always mad. And always looking for the next person to blame for all the world’s problems.

  14. I always wonder why the person calling for the extinction level event always assumes that he will be one of the privileged afterwards, and not one of the eliminated.

    1. If it left humanity free to grow free without the curse of Marx, you can drop that asteroid on my position. Worth it.

      I assume no survival. Thus each day is a gift. My current existence is already a series of highly improbable evasions of early endings.

      No, I do not wish the dinosaur killer rock on the innocent. But the marxoid nincompoops are working on trying for a 10 figure event. They got 9 last century, and are determined to try harder.

    2. I do not think they always do. A lot of them seem to loathe themselves. I think someone over at scifiwight said that leftist is a religion with all the sons and no redemption.

      Live long enough, and like the in the old Anglican prayer book, the weight of one’s vices, betrayals, losses and failures becomes unbearable.

      Also, there’s a funny Screwtape (?) quote about a woman who “lives for others”. You can always spot the Others by their hunted expression.

        1. SheSellsSeashells they kind of do have reconciliation if you mean it in the Catholic Church’s sense that involves confession and penance. Basically you confess your various failings (Whiteness, heterosexuality, willingness to work etc.) and then provide penance in the form of reparations or similar (e.g. making wedding sites for to the preferred downtrodden). That last step of forgiveness never happens though. No one can remove the stain of original sin in their theology, this is convenient (for them) as it means you have to keep providing reparations and it keeps their racket running. The “Enlightened” priestly class are preternaturally free of the stain of their original sin or so it seems.

    3. @ DrTanstaafl > “always assumes that he will be one of the privileged afterwards”

      Sometime in about 1975 IIRC, I was listening to a radio broadcast of an interview with Isaac Asimov.
      Note required for context: Dr. Asimov’s family were Jewish refugees from Russia, arriving in America when he was 3 (h/t Wikipedia).

      As I remember it, he was talking about a conversation he had recently had with his wife, where she was waxing nostalgic for the “good old days” when everyone had servants to do all the hard work of keeping house and wished they had lived back then.
      “Ah, yes, my dear,” he recalled answering her, “but remember: in those days, we would have been the servants.”

      This quote from Wiki is relevant to the topic:
      “I have had a good life and I have accomplished all I wanted to, and more than I had a right to expect I would.” — Asimov, 1990

  15. I always wonder why the person calling for the extinction level event always assumes that he will be one of the privileged afterwards, and not one of the eliminated.

  16. There is a reason why the leftist death cult echoes Agent Smith from The Matrix declaring that humanity is a virus that needs to be wiped out.

    They really do hate people and believe that utopia requires a very small population that lives “in harmony with nature”, i.e. on the perpetual edge of extinction. Yet somehow they think in such a world they would get to keep all their modern luxuries. The level of double-think they need to achieve to believe this is basically psychotic, which is why they all scream like utter lunatics at anything that challenges their worldview.

    They also engage in what is essentially the old medieval practice of people buying “grace” by giving money to the church. They think that as long as they proclaim the right mantras and promote “the cause” that they will be guaranteed a place in the neo-Marxist “heaven”, never understanding that posturing doesn’t matter, it is genuine actions and deeds that matter. They never grasp that they are simply tools of a corrupt clergy getting rich off of the “useful idiots” and has no qualms about them languishing in squalor while the elite lives in their palaces and lives like royalty.

    As the Black Sabbath song goes:
    “The world is full of Kings and Queens
    Who blind your eyes and steal your dreams
    It’s Heaven and Hell, oh well
    And they’ll tell you black is really white
    The moon is just the sun at night
    And when you walk in golden halls
    You get to keep the gold that falls
    It’s Heaven and Hell, oh no!”
    (Writer(s): William Ward, Terence Butler, Tony Iommi, Ronald Padavona)

    1. The whole magic words trumping earthy deeds is as old as the Sadducees*.

      And yet, I think it is worse for the poor chick’s growing up today. They live in a magic world where words and poses make or break you. As near as I can tell the glowing little pocket moloch is as real as, or more real than, the human beans around them.

      I cannot grok it.

      *Yes, I know. Ideologically orthogonal possibly. I forget which bunch were the ones who let their parents starve while making a meaningless symbolic offering of worldly goods. 😋

    2. I don’t think most people spend much time thinking about it that hard. They just know if they rub the blue mud they get rewarded, and if they don’t they get cut out of society. Since rubbing the mud doesn’t seem to cost them much, why should they care?

      And then they go about the rest of their day focusing on things they actually care about.

  17. D-mn and blast woman! you’re reading my mind again. The wife and I were talking about just this in the car today with the example of that Congress critter’s ANTIFA daughter/son, or whatever he/she/it is today and the white trash soap opera that is the Clinton’s and the Biden’s.

    They are just bad, miserable, unhappy people. I pity them, I really do. the problem is that they want me to be miserable and unhappy too.

    1. Since I was a small girl I have gone by, “Choose life that you and your family may live.”

      Weeds the evil doers out very easily. Does what someone proposes involve killing another for any reason or ruining their lively hood so they can’t support themselves or their family? They mean evil no matter what they say.

      And that is especially true of those who think OTHER people need to sacrifice for the good of humanity.

      1. “Does what someone proposes involve killing another for any reason ”

        The ghosts of Hitler, Ceausescu, etc. would like a word. So would their victims, who might have had that if someone had gotten through earlier.

      2. No. The question is, does it involve killing or oppressing innocent people for your own gain? Or just for disagreeing with your politics? Because there’s some varmints that just need killin’ because of what they’ve done, and what they will do if not stopped. They have to be permanently removed from society. Used to be, we could lock them up in jail for life, but now some liberal wanker will let them out for ‘equity’ so they can rape and murder again.

        Did we really gain anything by keeping Charles Manson alive for 50 years?

      3. Well, yes, I suppose teleporting all the GOP and Dem elitists to the French Antarctic Islands could be considered ruining their livelihood. On the other hand, they could still theoretically support themselves, IF they worked their butts off, or cooperated with each other.

        1. And if they don’t feel like working their butts off then Skua or whatever is the local scavenger will take advantage of it. As Mssrs. Niven and Pournelle said “Think of it as evolution in action”. It is probably a bit rude to the scavengers though, rotted flesh is probably far more palatable then brahmandarin.

          1. I derive a certain amount of happiness from the thought that Merrrick Garland may lie awake at night dreading the possibility that people like me ever get that ability to teleport people anywhere.

            1. I fear Mike that Mr Garland’s mind is far too closed and stodgy to ever come up with the scenario you suggest. However, perhaps he has enough knowledge to remember the French revolution and how it slowly ate itself. We can only hope…

              1. When the tumbrils came for Maximilien de Robespierre and Louis Antoine de Saint-Just…

                Come to think, the French Revolution was run by ‘Intellectuals’ wasn’t it? Ours are even stupider than theirs were. Garland is certainly no Saint-Just.

  18. A brief notice for readers of The New Neo and/or American Digest by Gerard Vanderleun.
    Please check the top post at either or both.
    The news about Gerard is not good: he has entered hospice care.
    Neo is relaying reports, and is on her way there.

  19. Sometime around thirteen or so every one of my children has complained that “If everyone would just do what they should ought to . . .”
    I simply stand there, look at the child, look at the sinkfull of dirty dishes, and wait for the embarassed mumble amounting to “I guess I don’t.”

    Yeah, assigning the oldest to do dishes at that phase worked so well that it’s been a feature ever since. Not for getting the dishes clean without drama, nothing works for that, but for convicting them that everyone, including especially themselves, is never going to “just do what they should ought to.”

    Funny part is, not a one of them has realized that’s why I’m always fighting with a thirteen or fourteen year old about doing the dishes. Of course the dishes need to be washed, it’s a simple enough chore, anyone could do it . . . and it goes to the child at that phase of development when they revisit the idea of ‘fair’ and realize that’s where we show livestock and baked goods, not that everyone gets what they want without effort.

  20. Serendipity for the win.
    From Not the Bee: The FDA is now proposing that we get an annual Covid shot until the end of time
    “You have to get the Fauci Ouchie once a year or else the vaccination won’t work. It still doesn’t stop the spread or prevent hospitalization or death and there’s a bunch of side effects, but you don’t want to be labeled an extremist, do you?
    You still have to do it to be a good person, don’t you know!

    1. You have to go to confession to get right with God.
      You have to receive communion every week in order to maintain a state of grace.
      You have to get Ashes every Ash Wednesday.
      You have to get some palms blessed and put them on the crucifix every Palm Sunday.

      You know, that COVID shot mantra sounds a lot like religious indoctrination; and probably less effective than the four instances I started with.

    2. No. And Hell NO. Not only that, I’m not getting the annual flu shot, anymore, either. Wasn’t consistent getting it in the past. Now just tell doctor “already got it at the pharmacy” which, for whatever reason, never ends up in the medical records.

  21. It does not appear that Ayn Rand was actually opposed to the things you are calling “altruism.” Rather, she was opposed to calling them “altruism.” In the first place, because they were not what Auguste Comte, who at least popularized and probably coined the word, meant by it. Comte’s definition of altruism was total dedication to the welfare of others, in complete disregard of your own welfare. Some years back I edited a scholarly biography of him that quoted him as saying that Jesus was an unsound moral teacher, because he said, “Love your neighbor as yourself” (recognizing that how much people loved themselves set a high standard), but a morally good person would not love themself at all, and a proper teacher would tell people not to love themselves; I thought that was pretty telling.

    And in the second place, because she thought that by equating courtesy, or generosity, or kindness to altruism—as admirers of Comte quickly did, starting with his correspondent John Stuart Mill—those admirers were blurring the distinction, getting people to accept the poison of self-contempt and self-hatred by mixing it with the sweetness of good will (or “benevolence,” which in her vocabulary was always a term of praise).

    (I’ve noticed that you like to insist on using words in the exact sense—as in our recent discussion of “romance”—and this seems like a parallel case.)

    In a curious way, C.S. Lewis was making a similar point when he said that the Christian virtue of “love” should not be confused with “selflessness.”

      1. I don’t think Comte was REdefining “altruism”; I think he was defining it in the first place, ideologically, as a total denial of any ethical basis for seeking one’s own interests or one’s own happiness. It was later people like Mill who were redefining it to make it more acceptable, in a classic “motte and bailey” fashion. And the fact that most people hear “altruism” and have warm feelings just reflects the success of that redefinition.

        I think that may be what you were saying, but my first thought was the exact opposite, so I thought I had better spell my view out and check . . .

      1. I looks to me as if what you are saying is the opposite of what Rand said, though. That is, you seem to be saying that altruism is a basically good idea, but that evil people have seized on it and perverted it to rationalize destructive beliefs and behavior and policies. But what Rand is saying is that altruism is an essentially evil idea, but one whose adherents have called all sorts of other things “altruism” to make it seem desirable—rather in the way that adherents of the essentially evil idea socialism like to say that having a police force or a fire department or a post office is “socialism” and that once you have those you can have no objection to having the government run every economic enterprise in an entire country.

        And given the actual intellectual history, going back to that malignant little man Comte and his apologist Mill, it looks to me as if Rand’s take on the matter is accurate and yours isn’t. At least, if you want to say that words have essential meanings (as in our discussion of “romance”), then the essential meaning of “altruism” seems to be Comte’s definition of it.

        1. No. That’s not what I was saying. Not even vaguely. I was saying it’s necessary in some very intimate high trust situations but even there it should be kept under control. I have no idea where you got your interpretation but it is almost the anthetesis of what I said, except for being slightly sideways. Dude. When have I ever done the evil people changed a whole behavior. Do I look Marxist to you?

    1. ‘Altruism’ in that sense does not exist. Everybody always chooses what they value most. If they value a smug sense of self-righteousness, and the adulation of abusive ‘liberals’ for submitting themselves to privation, they’ll do it. “Look what I have sacrificed for our Noble Cause! Ain’t I great?”

      Every choice somebody makes reflects their values and their own self-interest. Which is why they are always so quick to demand sacrifices from others. (Or demand that others be sacrificed)

  22. They are miserable because their model is based on a complete lie.

    Rousseau put out the goofy theory that all people are innately good. So if “bad” people are made by civilization then we can jigger civilization to make “good” people. The truth is all people are born selfish and bad but have the capability to be noble and loving. Anyone with a 2 year old knows this truth!

    They hate the bible because the bible teaches us this essential truth – we are born bad but can be redeemed if we follow our loving God. This is the foundation of most religious belief systems. And guess what? People who believe in God, on average, are much happier than those who don’t. They give to charity more and have more babies and believe in a future. They are just better people!

  23. From mid-1948 to January of 1950, the NBC Radio Network aired a half-hour Serious Drama show called, “Radio City Playhouse.”
    Definitely not for the children…!
    One of the stories was titled, “No Shoes.”
    The protagonist was in the hospital waiting room; his wife was having their baby delivered…
    He was talking with another man, who had much greater problems than this guy, with his nerves on edge.
    The title is explained near the close of the story:
    “I used to complain that I had no shoes— until I met a man that had no feet
    Truly a great lesson for us all!

  24. Leftists are always angry because their world view is outwardly focused, and the world will never conform to their desires. Instead of improving themselves, they rage about others not doing what they want. And the act of war called Covid-19 really brought that out.

    The glee with which they attacked others for not masking. The calls for incarceration of the unvaccinated, wanting to let them die instead of receiving medical care, denying them access to public events. They wallowed like a pig released into a mud pit. They loved it. No wonder they’re despondent that we dropped masking, and no wonder they want to restore lockdowns. I have lost friends over this, but I’m glad I did. These people were never my friends.

  25. Rand’s attack on Altruism makes a lot more sense when you recognize that she was attacking a deranged form of the idea which holds that to help your child, or a friend, or even someone that you judge worthy of help is not altruistic. Because that is something you value, by your judgement, thus it can’t be truly selfless.

    According to this idea the only altruistic behavior would be to help someone you never know. Or someone you are actively disgusted by and think utterly undeserving of help.

    Now consider the narratives around homeless people. Or the endless “screw local problems: help the third world only” ideas.

    The parasite is alive and well, and continuing to feast.

    1. I prefer the concept of reciprocal altruism. You do nice things to help out other people in the hope (wonderful word, hope), that they will return the favor if you’re ever in need yourself.

  26. This post and comments turned out to be very inspirational. Literally.

    As Sarah called it recently, this is “in a character voice” — I’m pretty sure someone from that near-future World Federation setting, if so almost certainly one of those countless French Countryside Deplorables all good socialists so love to hate.

    “The one thing you most have to remember about Marxism is that it’s not just a religion, it’s a fundamentally demonic one — its promises are as false as its worldview. You remember all those old end-of-the-world cults, many of ’em back in the 19th century? Believe that the end of the world is nigh, go sell all your stuff, lose all your friends (but gain some mighty sketchy instant new ones); then, when the appointed time comes round at last, go put on a clean white robe of purity and stand on some particular mountaintop, waiting your rightful, just reward as one of the new Chosen?

    “Then get real surprised when the world just keeps on turning its same old way, and the faith, the promises, the gaslighting, turn to mud and leaves like Faerie gold. Well, the Marxist millennialism is just like that, only with no set magic date for the clouds to part and no specific mountain to go stand on in your spotless linen bathrobe while you wait. It does not even offer you the honest, testable touchstone of that point in space and time; so if you haven’t got your perfect socialist workers’ paradise yet, it must surely be your fault! Go confess your sins to the Holy Collective at the next meeting of your local Party or Soviet, Comrade! Be shriven of them in front of your layman Priests of Marx, go forth and sin no more!

    “Except of course, Jules, there will never be a socialist millennium, the sky will never rip open in glory; ‘all religion and all deities are folly and delusion — and ours too!’ It’s not just a cult, not just a cult that falsely promises an earthly paradise, it’s built and run to deny you as surely as possible every opportunity to spot their swindle and catch them at it… even logical thought and analysis is ‘false consciousness’ to be denounced and then submerged into some silly collective, but always quite dogmatically-pure collective, groupthink. Get re-baptized, Comrade, early and often, but always in the latest eternally-true Pravda of the week!

    “It’s a bucket of crabs designed to grab you as hard as it can every way it possibly could, heart, mind, spirit, and soul; to pinch you as hard as could ever be done while you’re in it; to take as much as it can from you first if you ever do manage to find your way out of it — because it will and can ultimately deliver just about precisely nothing in exchange for all you have and could be in our real, beautiful, horrible, actual, world.

    “Religions like that — the Kobayashi Maru of secular or sacred faith, the kind that are as no-win-possible, as possible — all tend to break their people one of two ways, Jules. Either they become utter fanatics who can never even consider they’ve been wrong all along, and are willing to say and do anything at all to others trying to still that soft honest little voice in their own heart and mind. Or else they do see through the con; but with an unwavering faith that the entire world’s a swindle too, that since it’s made of nothing else, they ought make this world a temple to their own vices, because why not? And of course the second kind usually end up running the all-powerful anti-church staffed mostly by the first.

    “I know you’re a believing Christian like me. So sometime in that warm open cathedral quiet of your own heart, go ask yourself — or maybe even Someone wiser — this one specific little thing.

    “If the Devil Himself had designed a religion to work best for his ends, not one to most glorify that Old One but faithfully implement his desire, in what ways would His Own Trap have ever been any different from that?”

    Or to put it far more shortly and less eloquently, myself: perhaps the truest horror of Marxism isn’t that it never, ever works; but rather that this has quite possibly never been a bug, but instead always a feature.

  27. People are always going to ‘disagree’, it’s the LEVEL of disagreement that is important to some people. Rather than go along and get along, they want to be in charge… sigh

      1. Duh! We argue about everything. When Napoleon (who emancipated Jews in lands he conquered) fought the Czar (Jews are a barely tolerated minority in areas where they are already are, and may not move anywhere else in Russia), some Jews were on the Czarist side (https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/1155/jewish/Bonaparte-and-the-Chassid.htm). Even a theoretically self-evident truth like “Nazis are bad” wasn’t at the time beyond dispute (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lehi_(militant_group)#Nazi_Germany). Let alone something unseen like the afterlife.

  28. I went to a management training session once upon a time and for a change it was not repackaged drek and actually had some very good ideas. The one that sticks with me is the idea of thus:
    Do the right thing, for the right reason at the right time.

    Sounds simple but it isn’t. An example cited was a police district on ‘extra duty’ during an event (sports event, or whatever) and it gets extended. So the Capt. gets bottled water and snack bars to deliver to all the troops standing posts who can’t get away for a meal break. At delivery, he covers while the assigned office gets a bathroom run. Meantime the Sgt. types are charged with doing the same and follow the example. Was it required? Nope. Was it in the planning? Nope, should have been but we know how that works. It was taking the ‘next step’ and doing so thoughtfully for a “good” outcome. Not sitting at a desk “directing” but taking part and “doing” is something of value too.

    The military types know the Non-Coms and Officers that “inspire” are rare but when found to be valued and appreciated. Standing on a cliff doing a repelling rope exercise with a bunch of raw troops and turning to your left to the guy next to you asking him to quickly help belay and he jumps right in – it is telling when said random guy turns out to be the Capt. and he’s as tired, dirty and sweaty as you.

    Somebody I think once said that Heaven was just getting it right and Hell was having it all go wrong. Hopefully I work toward getting it right even if I fall short.

  29. I took the whole “long spoons” allegory a little differently.
    The afterlife, be you of whatever faith, will be spent with people just like you.
    For some people, that will be heaven. For others of us, that will be hell.
    Either way, you’ll be comfortable with your company.

  30. One thing that’s got me worried is the latest round of DC prosecutions and convictions make me wonder if we are or have crossed a Rubicon.

    Wondering if we may soon be waking up to our version of the proscriptions. Don’t know if we have any history of going through this sort of thing though. And on the other hand, as near as I can tell, the Roman proscriptions were only in the city proper, so maybe they’ll just stick to DC?

  31. Because no one ever told them “Life is pain, princess. Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something.”

    But they have been told that. They’ve also been told that when the System is sufficiently torn down, this will no longer be the case.

        1. Look, at this point old Norse religion is saner and more functional.
          If I had the power I’d deploy a million missionaries into their neighborhoods. “Have you heard of Thor?”
          They’re walled in against the other religions, but maybe we could get through with that one. Has to be better than Marx.

              1. “Earnest kids in horned helmets and just-pressed tunics…”

                I would dearly love to have that as a cartoon to pass around to at least some members of our congregation.
                (with a h/t to Wednesday’s post on family & group in-jokes)

                “What do you know about Valhalla? Would you like to know more?”

  32. I’m trying to remember an analogy that our pastor from a few churches back frequently used (it wasn’t original to him). It always annoyed me.

    Something about whether we should be a bag of marbles, always in collision, etc., or a bag of grapes, squishing into each other, with the juices mingling. The answer was supposed to be the grapes, of course.

    But every time I heard it, I got really annoyed. I’d far rather be an intact marble than a squished grape that no one would want to eat.

    And there was a line in there that went something like “No one cares whether there are 99 or 100 marbles in the bag.” Like they care about the number of grapes? But every time I heard that line, I thought, “The little boy (or girl) who owns that marble bag cares. They could tell you the history of each marble, and how they are different than all the rest of the marbles, all sorts of things.”

    I never understood the attraction of that metaphor, or why the pastor kept using it.

    1. I guess you could be going somewhere with making wine, but… uh….

      And there was a line in there that went something like “No one cares whether there are 99 or 100 marbles in the bag.” Like they care about the number of grapes? But every time I heard that line, I thought, “The little boy (or girl) who owns that marble bag cares. They could tell you the history of each marble, and how they are different than all the rest of the marbles, all sorts of things.”

      …Did he forget there’s a parable from a better source, about whether there are 99 or 100 sheep in the fold?

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