Review of “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test” by Tom Wolfe

Certain parts of history are very tough to understand. Some parts of history are really boring. In general, it’s also very difficult to understand more recent events. Nevertheless, I find the late ’60s/early ’70s to be particularly difficult to understand.

Imagine being at Leonard Bernstein’s fundraiser for the Black Panthers. That shit actually happened. Even terrorism was cool. It certainly wasn’t the sort of activity that would prevent you from teaching at major universities or associating with future Presidents.

In some ways, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test may help you understand these times better. However, in general, it just adds a lot of items to the list of things that happened in the late ’60s/early ’70s that don’t make any damn sense.

The book follows Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters as they sort of invent/discover Hippiedom.

Wolfe’s description of it all is fantastic, and I’m sure realistic (which is perhaps why none of it makes sense to me). Wolfe claims he didn’t try LSD, but it seems like he must have.

My favorite part was the pranksters at a Unitarian conference. Their sex and drugs bit didn’t play too well. But the Unitarians wanted to be non-judgmental, I guess.

I suppose if you want to under this time period, this is required reading. On the other hand, I’m not sure it’s possible to understand this time period.

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124 Responses to Review of “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test” by Tom Wolfe

  1. Toddy cat says:

    Trust me, I was there, and it didn’t make any more sense in person. A lot of us who lived through that time are still trying to figure out what exactly “went down” as we used to say, without a whole lot of luck. Suffice it to say, it was a real revolution, just as real as the French or Russian Revolutions. Don’t let the lack of guillotines and GuLags fool you. Just look at images, TV shows, and read books from 1960, and then 1970. The difference is massive, astonishingly so. Changes like that don’t happen without a revolution.

  2. idealart says:

    Radical chic wasn’t all that new though. Ever since Rousseau and the “noble savage” western elites have been drawn to the primitive and exotic. Captain Cook brought back one “Omai” from Polynesia. He was adopted by the Earl of Sandwich and introduced to fashionable London, including the royal family, around 1775.

    The 60s were many things but they were really a popularization of a lot of ideas that had been in circulation in aristocratic, intellectual and artistic European society for many decades. For example, something known as “feminism” was current at least by the late 19th century.

    Gnosticsm has been around since Sodom and Gommorah, the tower of Babel and golden calf worship.

    • Foseti says:

      Radical chic was indeed not new and it hasn’t gone away.

      Today’s elites still think they’re cool with the Black Panthers, perhaps. But they wouldn’t invite them into their homes!

      • idealart says:

        Maybe not, but they sure let ’em mau-mau the flake catchers. And that’s far more widespread than the 60s. Now, its not just bureaucrats but the Republican Party.

      • idealart says:

        Sorry, that’s “flak” not “flake”.

      • The Justice department is backing the New Black Panthers, indeed they are basically an astroturf organization manufactured by the Justice department, and if they would not invite the new Black Panthers into their homes, it is because it would make it obvious who was the puppeteer and who was the puppet.

        Major Hasan and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf advocated and promised terror, and they got invited, and Rauf continues to get invited, to all the right places.

      • josh says:

        Foseti,
        Have you read “The Slaughter of Cities”? You need to. It helps a little.

      • sardonic_sob says:

        @James A. Donald: That reminds me of a joke I read a while back about the modern KKK having about a thousand members, of which 950 were meth cookers who had joined to infiltrate the group on behalf of the FBI and get their sentences reduce. Sadly, it’s funny because it’s so believable.

  3. PA says:

    Black on white crime, and mass exodus of whites from cities were the guillotines and gulags.

    Early 90s was the revolution’s second, smaller offensive. Compare popular culture of the late 80s to the mid 90s.

    • Toddy Cat says:

      That’s a very good point, and yeah, there was a “mini-sixties” about the time of the whole Anita Hill – Clarence Thomas BS…

      • Steve Sailer says:

        Right, 1991-1992 was kind of mass nervous breakdown, with the bizarre Anita Hill thing being the peak.

    • josh says:

      1968. Riots in 100 American cities in one year and almost nobody considers this a particularly important historical event. Kids today don’t even know (and are not taught in schools) that this even happened. Now that’s power.

      • Foseti says:

        That’s definitely part of what makes this period so confusing. All this stuff happened, and then it was totally forgotten.

      • PA says:

        I also read somewhere recently (forgot where) some detail on various killings during the 68 riots. Many victims in several afflicted cities were young white teens on school trips. More than one case involved white teenage boys trying to intervene in a gangrape of a classmate.

      • Have these events really been forgotten? I’m an oldster without kids, so I don’t know what kids these days are taught and young people these days do or don’t know. But I was under the impression that “the ’60s” were widely resented for being such a huge, overknown cliché …

      • Foseti says:

        I was (officially) taught about free love, flower power and the anti-war movement (I’m 30). Mention was made of violence only the context of blacks rioting against injustice.

        So much other weird, incomprehensible shit happened though and it was basically forgotten – even by your generation! Why isn’t Bill Ayers in jail? None of you seem to think it’s in any way weird that he instead spent his time grooming the next generation of leaders.

        The whole university-level education system was basically overthrown, in some cases violently. Everyone was basically instantly cool with the results.

        Etc.

      • josh says:

        I taught American history for 4 years. It’s not in the textbook nor part of the curriculum. I taught AP US Government which referred to the 1968 Chicago “Police Riots”, but that’s it. (I may have let a few things slip out).

      • So “the ’60s” is taught, but they skip the dark side of it, is that right?

      • Foseti sez “So much other weird, incomprehensible shit happened though and it was basically forgotten – even by your generation! Why isn’t Bill Ayers in jail? None of you seem to think it’s in any way weird that he instead spent his time grooming the next generation of leaders.”

        Hey, watch your generalizations. There were a lot of different sub-generations among the Boomers, a lot of different subcultures, and a lot of people who didn’t/don’t conform to the corny images people generally have of the ’60s. MANY of us think it’s weird that Ayers isn’t in jail, for instance. But we don’t run magazine, edit textbooks, produce TV shows, run for office, etc.

        Foseti sez: “The whole university-level education system was basically overthrown, in some cases violently. Everyone was basically instantly cool with the results.”

        Not at all true. I arrived at college in 1972, for instance — just after the rioting and upheavals stopped. And me ‘n’ my cohort were VERY conscious of having arrived in a wasteland. It was like a still-smokin’ battleground just after the armies departed. We were aware of it, and we were pretty miffed (if in a rueful way) about it too. We hadn’t gotten to have the fun of throwing rocks thru windows — but we were being stuck with the consequences. (Eviscerated curricula, silly “progressive” shit, new rules, etc.) We felt like the guys who clean up after a circus, not getting to enjoy the show but being stuck sweeping up all the sawdust and elephant shit.

      • Foseti says:

        You should find a mainstream high school textbook and read the bit on the ’60s. You might be surprised.

        I guess what seems weird is that the rest of you didn’t really clean up after the circus. You note that you got stuck with the crazy educational theories without the fun. But the same could be said for every generation after yours. It would appear there’s still some cleaning left to do.

      • Foseti sez: “You should find a mainstream high school textbook and read the bit on the ’60s. You might be surprised.”

        I definitely should. Fun to learn about your impressions of the era, what you’ve been told about it, your attempts to puzzle it out, etc.

      • Foseti says:

        might even make for a decent blog post

      • josh says:

        Kids *love* hippies! It’s all putting flowers in gun barrels.

      • asdf says:

        I read a Japanese history in Japan. Giant hole between 1932 and 1944. This is par for the course.

  4. I was there. Made sense at the time. Still makes sense.

    That stuff got you laid, and promised political power. And, did I mention, it got you laid.

  5. idealart says:

    Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) wrote the Port Huron Statement in 1962. In it they carefully outlined the necessity and steps needed to infiltrate academia. Welcome to their world.

  6. idealart says:

    The interesting thing about the cultural revolution – it was an incremental progression towards anti-tradition. It blossomed in a complete way spiritually, if you will, in the 60s. But it took several decades, with both political parties working together, to realize. Now, intelligent young men like Foseti cannot fathom how, or even if, it happened.

  7. WillieMaize24 says:

    I remember reading somewhere that in the 60’s the GRU put massive amounts of money into the anti-war and other leftist movements so maybe that had something to do with the change.

    There was no internet back then (I don’t remember if we even had electricity ) so it was easy to get caught up in the fad of the moment, without having any blogs to read to keep your head screwed on straight. Just look at the way the Viet Nam vets were treated by their own people when they came home. It was absolutely insane.

    As for Tom Wolfe, before you take him too seriously read Dwight MacDonald’s criticism of an earlier book of his in Masscult and Midcult. He raised some seriious questions (imo) about Wolfe’s accuracy. That doesn’t mean that Wolfe can’t be trusted, but it did make me wonder about how accurate he was in other things..

  8. WillieMaize24 says:

    Pressed the send button too soon

    I have to wonder how much the 60’s were simply the natural outgrowth of the Progressive influence starting with Teddy Roosevelt and working its way through the New Deal and then aided by Socialists or Communists or their sympathizers in positions of authority in government and education. I mean when you had so much of it for so long, it had to lead somewhere.

    • Toddy Cat says:

      I’m sure you wre probably correct about this, but a lot of this stuff was very much under the surface, and the surface itself was pretty placid. When the storm broke, a lot of us felt like Poles getting out first taste of the Blitzkrieg. I was a kid in 1968, and I thought that the world was ending. Close enough, I guess.

      • josh says:

        SDS was the youth organization of the League for Industrial Democracy (which is another name for communism) started by some famous American socialist (Upton Sinclair and Jack London among them). There is obviously organizational continuity. London, btw, also a founding member of the Bohemian club, which is naturally located in San Francisco, had many obvious proto-hippy elements, and was made up of both leading left-wing artists and industrialists.

        The associations between socialis, new age-ism (the Theosophists adopted “Bellamyism” as the official political doctrine of the religion, and California are too numerous to mention and also quite confusing. Has anyone ever written a history of all of this?

        I’m not sure how much there was that was new in hippydom other than that it started being used to sell fabric softener.

    • sardonic_sob says:

      Oh, it started much earlier than that.

      “If some alliance of democrats so much as renders the king subject to the rule of law, they are transferring the king’s judicial powers not to no one, but to a concrete human body – a judiciary. They have fragmented the imperium and produced the constitutional solecism of imperium in imperio. Their monarchy is certainly doomed, at least in any substantive sense. And thus men laid, centuries ago, the foundation for all our feral subway yoofs. Imperium fragments irreversibly and entropically – monarchy descending to oligarchy, oligarchy to aristocracy, aristocracy to democracy, democracy to mere anarchy.

      Which fruit has taken many a year to ripen. But what a fruit it is! Now, at last, we see it in its glory. No other recent day knew such a thing. Yoofs! ”

      http://unqualified-reservations.blogspot.com/2010/03/divine-right-monarchy-for-modern.html

  9. spandrell says:

    The 60s is the best argument against natalism. Too much young people can’t be a good thing.

  10. A Comment says:

    The 1967–1969 Revolution was in essence a perverted Christian revival.

    Compare it to the equally spontaneous flowering of the 1904–1905 Welsh Revival:

    “”The Revival”… has been the absorbing theme of thought and discussion. Before it, the War, the state of trade, ordinary and extraordinary political topics, and even football, have been thrown into the shade as topics of general conversation.
    Drunkards have been soberised, publicans have lost much business, conduct on public streets has been elevated, and the police and magistrates have had quieter times… The bottom of the pits have been utilised as centres for prayer and praise meetings, and there has been a general raising of the standard of public life.
    The “Revival” still continues to monopolise general attention, almost everybody is talking about it, thinking about it, or working in its interests, and the movement does not seem to flag at all… Converts are being made nightly, and the enthusiasm is intensifying and spreading…”

  11. I’m a Boomer but I was a little too young to make it to Woodstock or riot on campus. Still: lived thru it all. I often find myself wondering what my parents made of those years — it must have seemed like everything was going straight to hell. And so quickly. NYCity in the ’50s, for instance, was a pretty shiney and bustling place. By the early ’70s it was a dangerous (if somzetimes exciting) shithole. Amazing how quickly that happened.

    A lot of it was the Boomers — just the huge quantity of them. A lot of it was post-WWII prosperity. A lot of it was drugs. Some of it was the impact on whitebread America of certain far-out thinkers, some of them Jewish and therapy-oriented. (Check out Paul Goodman and Norman O. Brown, for instance. There’s a good doc about Paul Goodman — “Paul Goodman Changed My Life” — on Netflix streaming.) But a lot of it’s pretty mysterious. One historian of religion I once read ventured the thought that the U.S. simply goes thru religious revivals — Great Awakenings — on a fairly regular basis, and that the ’60s can be best understood as one of these Great Awakenings. As an explanation it works for me. That’s certainly what it felt like at the time.

  12. BTW: Tom Wolfe’s a caricaturist and a satirist. He’s a good reporter — he’s true to the facts in his own way. But he hyperbolizes everything. And good for him! Just don’t take it too too literally at least not in the sober sense.

  13. Toddy cat says:

    “Why isn’t Bill Ayers in jail?”
    It’s never too late, although I hear that he has friends in high places…

    “I guess what seems weird is that the rest of you didn’t really clean up after the circus”

    A lot of us tried – that’s what a lot of the whole “Reagan Revolution” was. The “second-stage” Boomers are one of the most solidly conservative generations in American history.And as for cleaning up after the circus, the clowns were still running around the tent, trying to get the circus rolling again, and interfering with the clean-up in every way possible, and they’re still around (see the aformentioned Bill Ayres). And of course, now the clowns are in charge of the clean-up operation. Iwonder why everything is such a mess…

    • It wasn’t really possible to clean up the tent given that the people who trashed it then proceeded to take the circus over. That’s a simple fact of economic history: the early Boomers (the ones who wept for JFK, boogied to the early Stones, rioted on campus, went or didn’t go to ‘Nam, and got high at Woodstock — the cliche Boomers) emerged into a hugely thriving economy. They helped themselves to a lot of fun jobs, and often advanced very quickly. And some of them were shrewd entrepreneurs — Rolling Stone’s Jan Wenner, for instance. By the time my cohort came along (roughly 4-7 years later), the economy was in the toilet — gas crisis, stagflation, J. Carter, etc. It was a worse economy and job-market than any post-WWII stretch until the present. So we got in, if we could get in at all, at the bottom of the ladder — and from down there we watched our elders scramble to the top, from where they’ve been running many things ever since.

      As Toddy Cat points out, it was Boomers who helped elect Reagan. It was also with some Boomers (often Christian kids who’d rebelled against their families and then found themselves alone and confused once the drugs and the revolutionary high wore off) that the Jesus Freak movement started. They’d alienated their real fathers and needed to replace him with Him.

      One of the best books I’ve read about the period was Lichter and Rothman’s “Roots of Radicalism.” Very enlightening!

  14. Anonymous says:

    If you are interested in the 60’s you should also read Hunter Thompson’s “Hells Angels”, “Fear an Loathing in Las Vegas”, “Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail”.
    Also “Acid Dreams” and “Storming Heaven” about LSD.

  15. Steve Sailer says:

    I’d add that a lot of the Sixties, such as the Ken Kesey stuff, weren’t terribly political in most usual senses. Kesey, for example, was a farm boy from Colorado with literary talent. To make a little money in the late 1950s, he signed up for a medical experiment that turned out to be LSD.

    Another factor was the impact of California and its sunshine on sun-hungry Northern Europeans, promising a perpetual Rite of Spring. And California, back then, had a cheap cost of living. California in 1967 looked like what every European peasant had been dreaming of for thousands of years.

    • Foseti says:

      Wolfe makes basically no mention of politics in the book. I found that surprising, as I’d always understood the hippie movement to be political.

      • asdf says:

        The hippie movement was about getting laid and doing drugs. The political stuff was a sideshow to not feel so bad about the fact that you wasted all the shit your depression era Nazi defeating parents did for you. There was a purpose to your getting laid, after all.

        There are a bunch of hipsters in my neighborhood. They dress and act like its the 60s. It’s not a very political movement. It’s just about spending trust funds and getting tattoos.

  16. […] is trying to make some sense of the […]

  17. idealart says:

    If anybody’s interested read the reviews of Mailer’s Armies of the Night at Amazon. You’ll get a flavor of the whole self-righteous stinking mess of the counter-culture erupting in the 60s. Especially the one by John Hevelin.

    • Toddy Cat says:

      “the whole self-righteous stinking mess of the counter-culture”

      That about sums up a lot of what I remember about the 1960’s. It wasn’t just that a buch of kids wanted to do drugs, get laid as much as possible, and not fight in a war – a lot of people from previous generations might have signed on for that program. The striking thing was that they saw themselves as morally superior to those who didn’t trip, fuck everything that wiggled, and dodge the draft, and damned if they didn’t convince the whole damned society (or at least a lot of it) that they WERE morally superior, and I still just sort of stand in awe of this accomplishment. I mean, I did all sorts of crazy, reprehensible stuff when I was a young man, but I did not see myself as a hero for doing it, and certainly no one else saw me that way.

      • I certainly don’t disagree with any of that, but can I suggest that it’s worth remembering that a lot of what the protestors were protesting against WAS pretty awful? The Greatest Generation had overreached in numerous ways, Vietnam was a disaster — far worse than Iraq and Afghanistan. Urban Renewal was a mega-disaster too — thousands of neighborhoods plowed-under, millions of people forcibly moved to hideous block highrises. Imagine that — the feds coming in, forcibly taking you and your family from your house, plowing your neighborhood under, and planting you in an ugly concrete high-rise that quickly turns into a crime-ridden nightmare. And that happened to millions of Americans.

        I’ve got a half-drafted blogposting about urban renewal lying around somewhere, I should really get back to it …

      • jamesd127 says:

        Uh, the sixties generation was protesting in favor of gigantic government owned soviet style high rises built in modern brutalist style, and against small scale privately owned housing. Remember the song “ticky tacky little houses”. The stuff that was destroyed to make way for the massive concrete blocks of storage for human cattle was demonized, still is demonized, as slums, and those whose homes were destroyed were demonized, still is demonized, as slumlords.

        Vietnam was a bad idea, since it was foolish to engage communists in a war of conscript cannon fodder, but after Vietnam came the massive communist bloodbaths in Vietnam and Cambodia, where the sixties generation cheered on the torturers and demonized those fleeing the Khmer Rouge.

        It was on this issue, the venomous hatred and demonization of the victims of communism, in particular the refugees from the Khmer Rouge, that I parted ways with the left.

      • Back to the history books with you. Urban Renewal was entirely a project of the Greatest Gen:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urban_renewal

        So far as housing, architecture and such goes, the hippie movement was in rebellion against vast top-down concrete-blocks as well as vast, top-down automobile suburbs. (The post WWII American automobile suburbs weren’t the result of the free market doin’ its thing. It was a huge Greatest-Gen engineering project.) Hippie architecture was Jane Jacobs, smaller-is-beautiful, yurts, built-it-yourself wood cabins, reclaiming old houses, co-ops, hay-bale buildings … A lot of it kinda silly (though much of it I like), but ALL of it in reaction against gigantism, dictatorialism, uniformity …

        I think you may hate lefties and hippies so much that you’re associating them with everything bad in the world. But you’re just factually wrong where architecture-and-urbanism goes. Hippies were for decentralization, breaking-apart-the-giant-top-down-thing, building stuff with your own hands from the ground up (and from natural materials), human scale …

      • jamesd127 says:

        > “Hippies were for decentralization, breaking-apart-the-giant-top-down-thing, building stuff with your own hands from the ground up (and from natural materials), human scale …”

        Theoretically, but observe their reaction to Pol Pot’s centrally planned water works.

        I saw plenty of venemous hostility to suburbia, which is human scale buildings. Where was their alleged hostility to the Stalinist style housing projects.

        If you are going to do it yourself, you are going to do it for yourself, have your own little plot. Recall the fable of the little red hen – she grows her own wheat, and bakes her own bread, then everyone wants to share it, and she tells them to go pound sand. The moral of that fable is capitalism. The hippies wanted collective plots, which are, in practice, the vast Stalinist works of the housing projects and Pol Pot’s irrigation canals. They wanted collectivism without the horrors of collectivism, but, when real collectivism showed up with real horrors, were reluctant to acknowledge those horrors.

        And that is what caused me to part ways with the left.

      • Jamesd127 — You’re associating hippies with totalitarian architecture because it suits your ideas, not because of any actual history. In theory: hippies were totalitarians, thus they MUST have been supporters of Gulag-like building. In reality, they built log cabins, hay-bale houses, and Buckminster Fuller-domes, and they moved into old urban neighboorhoods and semi-abandoned country towns. They made a guru out of Jane Jacbos, not out of Le Corbusier. Simple facts, deal with ’em. And they didn’t hate the post-WWII automobile suburbs because of the scale of the houses — the houses they built themselves tended to be on that scale. They hated it for boredom, squareness, uniformity, excessive automobile-dependence … All of them fairly-valid criticisms, btw.

        I’m not someone who minds dissing the ’60s or the hippies — quite le contraire. I do think it’s worth getting our facts straight, though.

      • jamesd127 says:

        > you’re associating hippies with totalitarian architecture because it suits your ideas, not because of any actual history. In theory: hippies were totalitarians, thus they MUST have been supporters of Gulag-like building. In reality, they built log cabins, hay-bale houses, and Buckminster Fuller-domes, and they moved into old urban neighboorhoods and semi-abandoned country towns.

        I was there. I lived through the period. I was an insider. I helped organize protests.

        They thought and theorized and talked about this a lot, but did not in fact do this to any significant extent. If you actually do something like that, cannot be done collectively, except by collective that is an actual biological family. It is a lot of work, no one works except for themselves and close kin.

        What they were thinking and talking about was having collectivism, without the horrors of collectivism.

        But when actual collectivism showed its face, they somehow did not notice that it differed strikingly from the collectivism they envisaged.

        In the protests we cried “Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh” And then Ho Chi Minh, got to rule South Vietnam, and proceeded with the usual terror and bloodbath, while Pol Pot got Cambodia and proceeded with entirely unprecedented terror and bloodbath, to which the left politely closed their eyes, demonizing and savagely attacking anyone who mentioned what was going on.

        Somehow, the hippies mistook Pol Pot’s entirely real irrigation works for their entirely theoretical buckminster fuller domes.

      • OK, I can’t resist it, I’m back.

        jamesd127 — I dislike Brutalism as much as you do but please learn some history. It wasn’t hippie-era ’60s people who created Brutalism or who designed and built its most awful examples. It was (once again) Greatest Gen people. Check it out:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brutalism

        Brutalism got started in the ’50s, when Boomers were either children or as-yet-unborn. The famous Brutalist buildings of the ’60s and ’70s were built at a time when hippie-era architects were either still in school or were just getting started as architects (in other words, they were still assistants and apprentices — they were helping older architects realize their plans).

        As for domes … Sure I knew people who built and lived in domes. I’m amazed you didn’t, because you’re ‘way off in your guess that only a few domes were ever built. Some sources claim that 500,000 of them were built. Even if that’s wrong by a factor of five, that’s still many, many thousands of ’em. There were plenty of them around.

        I’m not an advocate of Bucky domes, btw. Most people didn’t like living in them, and they’ve been a flop as a building type. But they were mostly on a human scale, a lot of people built them on their own — it was a real do-it-yourself time in homes — and they were part of a general reaction against inhuman, regimented, top-down, oversized development.

        If you’re really desperate for a ’60s-era person/archtiect who’s currently designing loads of atrocious buildings, check out Thom Mayne. That’s the ’60s at its worst in architecture.

      • > Some sources claim that 500,000 of them were built. Even if that’s wrong by a factor of five, that’s still many, many thousands of ’em. There were plenty of them around.

        Were there? What happened to them all?

        I see loads of brutalist buildings built in the sixties and early seventies, built mostly in and by universities where these guys had taken over. Where are the domes?

        Google images for geodesic dome house. A handful of houses appear over and over and over.

        If there were thousands, indeed if there were several dozen, we would not hit so much repetition.

      • James — Wikipedia says 500,000 domes were built.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buckminster_Fuller#The_geodesic_dome

        And you’re just factually off on Brutalism. It started in the ’50s, when the Boomer/hippies were children or unborn, and the examples you remember from the ’60s and ’70s were designed and built by Greatest Gen types. The Boomer/hippies you despise were either still in school at that point, were enjoying a drop-out stretch, or were just getting started in their careers.

        (In architecture, you don’t generally get to design and build something for QUITE a while — as in decades after getting your degree. Architects usually don’t hit their productive prime until their 50s thru their 70s, in fact.)

        Time to adjust your ideas: crappy Brutalism as an architecture phenom had zero to do with hippies and Boomers. There’s plenty of reason to dislike and diss the Boomers and hippies, but Brutalism (and a preference for hyper-uniform, large-scale, topdown, totalitarian/corporatist development and building generally) isn’t one of them.

    • My final try: What does the enthusiasm of some lefties you knew for Pol Pot have to do with the general stance of hippies vis a vis buildings and architecture? I was around in the ’60s too, and I hung out with people who did indeed build log cabins, who lived in domes, who organized co-ops, and who introduced me to Jane Jacobs, The Whole Earth Catalogue, and Christopher Alexander. Build-it-yourself, smaller-is-beautiful, tradition (and natural materials) should prevail over totalitarian fantasy … That was as much a part of “the ’60s” as leftie politicos and their absurd carrying-on. But maybe we hung out in different circles. Nonetheless: these domes, co-ops, hay-bale houses, and log cabins really did get built, and Jacobs and Alexander really did become inspirational gurus for many thousands of people interested in the built environment.

      But I’ll give up now.

      • jamesd127 says:

        > “What does the enthusiasm of some lefties you knew for Pol Pot”

        “Some lefties”? Before January 1979, when the official line on Pol Pot reversed with suddenness of Orwell’s hate week, to doubt the greatness and goodness of Pol Pot was entirely outrageous and shocking. Anyone who doubted was read out of the left – though after the reversal their sins were forgiven, provided they made suitable repentance.

        Just as 100% of lefties today deny the blood bath that followed communist victory in South Vietnam, 100% of lefties then denied the blood bath in Cambodia.

        > have to do with the general stance of hippies vis a vis buildings and architecture? I was around in the ’60s too, and I hung out with people who did indeed build log cabins, who lived in domes, who organized co-ops, and who introduced me to Jane Jacobs, The Whole Earth Catalogue, and Christopher Alexander. Build-it-yourself, smaller-is-beautiful, tradition (and natural materials) should prevail over totalitarian fantasy

        But it did not. Totalitarian fantasy prevailed.

        I see the Dartmouth Campus, expressing in concrete the sixties vision of collectivism as steel boot stamping on the human face forever. Where do I see these domes?

        You hung out with people who talked about living in domes and thought about living in domes, but did not in fact actually live in domes.

        The characteristic and distinctive architecture that the sixties actually produced was brutalism, inspired by soviet pens for human cattle.

        When these people came to rule academia, what did they build?

        They built the new brutalism, they built pens for human cattle, for example the Joseph Regenstein Library and the Dartmouth campus of the University of Massachusetts

        In the sixties they talked about domes, but what they actually built was more in the style of Soviet housing for slave laborers.

        Where do we see brutalist architecture in the sixties and early seventies? We see it in academia, where the sixties generation first exercised power. We don’t see any domes.

  18. Nyk says:

    Maybe a bit OT but I just found a video series which piqued my interest: “The Skeptic’s Guide to American History” by The Teaching Company. Obviously, the Teaching Company is in general as liberal-biased as most of its academic lecturers. Although they did invite John Hawks for a course on human evolution (even if it contains very little or no HBD theory)

    I am wondering to what degree is this American History course in line with the reactionary version and if it is worth watching.

    • anonymous says:

      Probably chock-full of groundbreaking revelations such as

      Thomas Jefferson owned slaves (and had sex with them) EVEN THOUGH HE WAS WRITING THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE.

  19. RS-prime says:

    > Imagine being at Leonard Bernstein’s fundraiser for the Black Panthers. That shit actually happened.

    His ‘Romantic favorites’ recording of the Vaughn Williams Tallis Fantasia is required listening. The mp3 is cheap a la carte. Do it up.

    Then you have Robert Trivers, lol…

  20. Clutch Cargo Cult says:

    Let not forget this happened all over the western world. The soixante huitards in France, 68er Bewegung in Germany. The beginning of the final march through the institutions.

  21. RS-prime says:

    > I’m not sure how much there was that was new in hippydom other than that it started being used to sell fabric softener.

    Right, read Der Steppenwolf and check the date. Then you’ve got the beats. The idea was to be an ultra-high-O ultra-high-P intellectual-spiritual bum instead of a ski bum. There have also been climbing bums. The defining image I think is how when Ginsburg and Cassidy(?), Ginsburg and somebody, first met, they would sit in chairs face to face and talk for like ten hours a day. They liked doing cool new things like that. A bit artificial, perhaps, was all their enthusiasm, but it had /some/ charm, breath. They were pretty cool, though they are not very interesting writers in my experience. And of course some of them were wretched morbids, daily drugees, including Kerouac and Burroughs.

    Kerouac was fool enough to think that masses of people, considerably less talented, needed his kind of journeying — rather than tradition. Rimbaud — far /more/ talented — to the best of my limited knowledge, seemed to more or less grasp the arcane fact that his and Valery’s doing shedloads of drugs, slicing each other across the chest for erotico-asketic purposes, firing guns at each other, etc, was properly the preserve of high-O high-Ps, and a way of injecting cool new energies into high culture — not some sort of a model for a new society. Gaugin may also have sort of recognized this, don’t know. Schiele less so, as he failed to maintain decent standards of conduct vis-a-vis the ‘normal’ world. Obviously, what Rimbaud and Kerouac were doing degenerates totally easily in the hands of the indisciplined, so Keroac/Cassidy/Ginsburg and the boys begat a whole degenerate world (with some pretty great music though). It has like /no/ feedback, so it degenerates ‘hard’. Oh, hard. Like the humanities academy. Science degenerates less, due to feedback – contact with reality – results – but does seem to rather clog up with high-A high-Cs as described by Charleton, though I don’t think science has lost its mojo altogether. Alpinism doesn’t degenerate at all, and cannot, because it has zero institutionality and is utterly terrifying. The trades, and manufacturing, and farming don’t degenerate much because you can’t really do fake plumbing, you can’t make a fake airplane. At most you can get someone to lie about the true results, but the truth is going to be a non-secret to a lot of people. Unfortunately it is extremely easy to make a phony postindustrial economy — though you are certainly free to choose not to, see Volcker — and in fact the very easiest thing of all to make is an entire phony civilization.

    btw josh if you ever wrote at length about all that stuff, you would certainly have a close reader over here.

    • RS-prime says:

      > There are a bunch of hipsters in my neighborhood. They dress and act like its the 60s. It’s not a very political movement. It’s just about spending trust funds and getting tattoos.

      I was a college hipster in the early 00s. The center of things was art, music, living in a cool house with a bunch of people where really high-O things are happening………. and needless to say, feeling cool and high status because you are immersed in people who consider each other totally awesome for being all high-O — as is more or less true, mutatis mutandis, for other subcultures and spheres.

      The politics isn’t too serious, and I think has mostly to do with a hope of exerting cultural influence through (alleged) sheer cultural vitality (there was some decently interesting art and cultural stuff going on, not too much). I don’t know how there possibly could be serious hip politik in the mode of the 60s, because in the 00s the world at large is not paying attention to your hipness. You don’t have like 20% of youth associated with your ‘movement’ in any serious fashion, and Mankind doesn’t care. At most there was some mass attention paid to the opposition to the wars — in general, not totally focused on hipsters. Aside from that, hipness was a private kultur-ferment.

    • jamesd127 says:

      Please decode. This sounds like PUA terminology – nerds speaking to a narrow circle of fellow nerds, even when they are studying and explaining how to not be nerds.

      High-O? High A. high P? Alpinism? If Mencius Moldbug can have such great influence while never using sentence when twenty paragraphs can explain the same thing just as well, we don’t need to be cryptic.

      • idealart says:

        If Mencius Moldbug can have such great influence while never using sentence when twenty paragraphs can explain the same thing just as well, we don’t need to be cryptic.

        But then his more than passing acquaintance with the blarney stone would be noticed.

  22. Toddy Cat says:

    Personally, I like suburbs, but I can recognize how some people might not. But as has been pointed out here, the hippies attraction to localism was wholly theoretical, and it’s not just a coincidence that the sixties resulted in a massive growth in the Federal Government, more centralization (in the name of ‘fighting discrimination’) and less personal freedom in every area except sexuality. Yes, America in 1963 was not perfect, no country is, but it was better in most way then than it was in 1975. All the hippies and the New Left did in the long run was make things worse. And, Paleo Retiree, lets not forget what REALLY led to the growth of the suburbs – white flight from the cities. If people had been happy in the cities, the demand would not have existed for freeways and tract homes. And make no mistake, the demand was there. The Feds didn’t exactly ram Interstates and ranch houses down people’s throats. There’s a lot to like about New Urbanism, but there’s also a nasty coercive streak in it very reminiscent of 1960’s Urban Renewal.

    • idealart says:

      I disagree with the often repeated trope of white flight. I grew up in a midwestern capital city in the 50s and 60s. There were few blacks anywhere and my once middle class neighborhood declined as younger families refused to buy the older but much better constructed and elegant homes, instead opting for tract houses in the suburbs. The people who replaced them were poorer whites.

      Suburbia was a part of the American dream, like the California of cars, Annette Funicello and surfer movies. People wanted to live in the burbs because they were new, the home at the end of the yellow brick road, but not Kansas, California. Americans, even (especially?) socalled conservatives, love new things. New cars, new gadgets, new cults, new freedoms, new lives.

      • Toddy Cat says:

        Obviously, I can’t disagree with your own experience, and there were certainly other factors operating at the time, but I do believe that increases in crime were a significant factor in the decision many people made to move to the suburbs. What were crime rates doing in your neighborhood as it was declining? I’ll be I know.

      • idealart says:

        No crime. Zero. I can’t think of ever seeing a police car. We only locked our doors at night, never bothering when going on short trips.

        It must be hard for kids nowadays to even comprehend the idea of a high school without guards. We had none. And my graduating class had about 670 students.

    • Toddy Cat — Why do you say that the hippies’ attraction to localism was wholly theoretical? They really did build log cabins and Fuller domes, they really did re-populate semi-abandoned neighborhoods, and (food-wise) they really did set off what eventually became the localist food movement. (Slow Food descends pretty directly from the hippie/’68 movement.) More generally, Federal govt in the ’60s expanded NOT because of the hippies — many Boomers couldn’t even vote yet — but because of the Greatest Gen. Vietnam, ’60s welfare, urban renewal, the Civil Rights act, the immigration reform law — some Boomers may marched in support of some of those, but they were all Greatest Gen initiatives.

      “If people had been happy in the cities, the demand would not have existed for freeways and tract homes. And make no mistake, the demand was there. The Feds didn’t exactly ram Interstates and ranch houses down people’s throats.”

      You’re talking about the interstates and the automobile ‘burbs as though they were free-market phenomena. They weren’t. The fact that a lot of people took advantage of them doesn’t change that fact.

      Look: the feds built the interstates; a lot of local governments built freeways. All that made it much easier for people to move out. The feds sponsored urban renewal, which devastated the downtowns of a lot of cities, which made them less attractive. Developers, government, and the automobile industry weren’t exactly in a conspiracy against cities, but they almost might have been. Jane Jacobs often marveled at how the people in charge during those years — NOT hippies, but Greatest-Gen types — appeared to, and behaved as though, they had it in for cities.

      During the couple of decades after WWII, there was a triumphal mood in the air of “we can engineer everything!” “We beat the Nazis and the Japns, didn’t we? So we can solve poverty! We can get to the moon! We can re-engineer our living arrangements! We can do anything!” The automobile ‘burbs — which, btw, had never existed before in all of history, and which are still a largely-American phenom (in many other countries, middleclass and prosperous people live downtown to this day — hey, cities can be fun) — were an outgrowth and expression of that topdown, WWII-like Greatest Gen overreach, er, mindset/style/approach.

      You can like the American automobile ‘burbs or not, but this is the standard history of their development. I’ve run across all of one book that disagrees with this account.

      • jamesd127 says:

        > They really did build log cabins and Fuller domes, they really did re-populate semi-abandoned neighborhoods, and (food-wise) they really did set off what eventually became the localist food movement.

        If you look for photos of fuller domes, you will notice that the same domes keep showing up, from which we may conclude that every dome that was built, was photographed a lot, and rather few were actually built, and that few,possibly none, of these domes were ever genuinely inhabited.

      • K(yle) says:

        I wasn’t around in the 60s (I’m Foseti’s age), but I get the same general impression that jamesd127 is putting forward. I think there is also a stark difference between ‘founding’ hippies, that didn’t even really call themselves hippies and what would come just a few years down the road when the media conflated the vaguely lefty hippies with the radical chic new left despite the two having different origins, founding personalities, et cetera.

        The guys building log cabins and growing their own food were a tiny minority inundated with radical progressives that started growing their hair long and doing drugs but were in every other way still the same pinkos they always were, and really had no interest in ‘localism’ except rhetorically.

        Saying you support that stuff was part of the subculture while actually doing anything about it was not, in the same way modern Libertarianism has rhetorical boilerplate about freedom but you won’t find very many Libertarians that oppose “Civil Rights” for gays, which is obviously a concept contrary to the rhetoric of non-coercion, limited government, et cetera.

  23. RS-prime says:

    Jim — the OCEAN inventory of personality. OCEAN is an acronym of the five variables. They were allegedly empirically generated, though this is not actually true at all. It’s still very meaningful though. Openness to experience/ideas. Extraversion. Conscientiousness, which you’ve probably seen referred to a lot, as it and IQ are the two large (but not sole) determinants of performance in normal affairs, such as going to college, doing a job, etc.

    In a few sorts of affairs, like what we do (philosophize — hard), C still has a large role to play but creativity + IQ are more determinative. (Though a few people deny that creativity exists distinct from intelligence). Creativity may be considerably associated with Psychoticism, which was constructed by one Eysenck (race realist) to measure/index the relative similarity of non-psychotics to a clinically psychotic phenotype.

    Creativity is basically measured as divergent response. I ask you to give a list of twenty large mammals in one minute, tell you (I think) that you are being judged on divergence, and then see how divergent you are: whether you name the same old shit as everyone else, dogs and elephants and stuff, or come up with a bunch of odd and interesting animals which are seldom named by other persons being studied in the same way. The relative uniqueness/banality of all your animals is then toted up for a quantitative score. Actually that’s not a great example since some people will just have much larger stores of knowledge of animals than other people ; presumably ‘they’ have some more refined and clever way of going about this, that minimizes such problems.

    Alpinism just means climbing big mountains. I think it generally implies that there is some scary ‘technical’ climbing, not sure. I think the great majority of big peaks have plenty of that. Climbing Mt McKinley, though it is very high, is said to be much more about (a) not falling into glacial fissures, which can be hidden, and which sometimes kill people there, and (b) potentially polar-like conditions, which kill lots of people there. There may also be avalanches. I myself have never climbed, so far ; I’ve only read about it. It tends to spring to mind as an obvious counter whenever I debate people about whether secularism entails utilitarianism or ‘hedonism’ (in the common sense), a claim which is clearly wrong.

  24. Oh, I forgot the mortgage-interest deduction. Interesting article about it:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/05/magazine/305deduction.1.html?pagewanted=print

    Excerpt:

    “In the 1930’s, the mortgage industry got a huge assist from the feds — not from the tax deduction, but from agencies like the Federal Housing Administration, which insured 30-year loans, and, over time, the newly created Federal National Mortgage Association, or Fannie Mae. Before then, the corner bank would issue a mortgage and wait for the homeowner to pay them back; now savings and loans could replenish their capital by selling their mortgages to Fannie Mae — meaning they could turn around and issue a new mortgage to someone else.

    By the time the G.I.’s returned from World War II, bursting with dreams of homeownership, the mortgage industry was ready for them. It wasn’t until after 1950 that the majority of homeowners had mortgages. And thanks to this ready financing, renters suddenly became owners. After hovering around 45 percent for the first half of the 20th century, the proportion of owner-occupied homes soared. By 1960, 62 percent of Americans owned their homes. (Today, the figure is only slightly higher: 69 percent.)”

    In other words: the postwar auto-suburbia boom was caused (at least in part, maybe in large part) not by some pre-existing free-markety “demand” but by such government-sponsored efforts as superhighways, freeways, urban renewal, Fannie Mae and the FHA. (Not even mentioning govt’s devotion to Detroit, GM, automobiles and oil.) That’s a lot of government; that’s a lot of incentives. It wasn’t something that just happened because a lot of people wanted it to happen. Loads of people took advantage of of the opportunities, sure, but the opportunities were there mainly because government and big-biz created them.

    • Toddy Cat says:

      “Loads of people took advantage of of the opportunities, sure, but the opportunities were there mainly because government and big-biz created them.”

      You could say the same thing about the railroads in the 19th Century. For that matter, you could say the same about a good many cities workldwide, which often came into being as a result of government programs/incentives. And if a lot of people had not wanted it to happen it wouldn’t have happened – last time I checked, the U.S. was a democracy in 1962, and most politicians are not in the habit of doing things that will lose them votes. And lets face it – up until the 20th century, most people have lived in small farming villages, not cities or suburbs. It’s not as if hyper-dense cities are the “natural” way to live, assuming there is such a thing, and if there is, it would appear to me that living amongst a bunch of grass and trees comes closer to it than living stacked on top of each other in cities. I simply don’t understand your hostility to suburbs, PR – no more Janes Howard Kunstler for you, young man!

  25. fnn says:

    Anyone read E. Michael Jones’ book on White Flight?
    http://www.culturewars.com/Reviews/SlaughterReviews.html

  26. Toddy Cat says:

    “Why do you say that the hippies’ attraction to localism was wholly theoretical?”

    Because when they actually got into power, localism and any kind of local autonomy was the first thing to go, in every area possible. States Rights? No. Charter Schools? Nope. Splitting cities up into smaller administrative entities. No way. Freedom of Association? Are you kidding!?! Local schools controlled by local school boards? That’s racist! Yes, the hippies might have claimed to be in favor of localism, but I see very little evidence that they actually tried to put this into practice at any substantive policy level. Surely there is more to localism than gentrifying neighborhoods, shopping at whole foods, and claiming that “small is beautiful” while stamping on every manifestation of localism that does not conform to one’s ideological agenda.

    Yes, the “Greatest Generation” certainly made some mistakes, but all the hippies did, in the long run, was make things worse, and they lacked that generation’s many real virtues. Unlike PR, I see almost nothing of value in waht they advocated. I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree…

    • ToddyCat — You’re talking about the Boomer/hippies as though it was one large entity. But it wasn’t. The ones that went into politics (and into Wall St, and academia, and the media) weren’t the same people who built the log cabins and Bucky domes and who grew their own vegetables. Generalizing from what the political ones have done and then saying that that’s what the entire Boomer generation did and stands for is misleading. It’s like (for instance) associating me with Bill Clinton’s policies, just because I’m more or less Bill Clinton’s age. In fact, besides our age, Bill Clinton and I have very little in common.

      In any case … There was a Whole Earth Catalogue, Smaller-Is-Beautiful element in the Boomers that wasn’t much concerned with politics or policy, but that was very concerned with educating their kids freely — the home-schooling movement got its start in the ’60s and ’70s with people like John Holt and Ivan Illich — with building their own houses (inspired by Jane Jacobs, Christopher Alexander, Bernard Rudovsky’s “Architecture Without Architects” ..), with growing veggies of their own, etc. That whole sub-segment of the Boomers was seriously into decentralization, local food, ground-up self-organization, cybernetics, etc. It helped lead not just to the current locavore thang, but also to the personal computer. Steve Jobs used to credit the Whole Earth Catalogue as an inspiration. (The Whole Earth Catalogue itself was a kind of proto World Wide Web.) And many programmers have found themselves inspired by the general “patterns” ideas of Christopher Alexander. Check out Stewart Brand and E.F. Schumacher too. Kirkpatrick Sale’s another interesting guy — very leftist (actually an anarchist), but not at all a topdown Stalinist. He’s such a decentralist that these days his main involvement is with the Vermont secession movement. But there were a lot of break-it-apart movements in the ’60s and ’70s. I was a student in Brittany circa 1970, for instance, and one of the main things happening politically there was a rebirth of Breton culture and a pretty serious (a few bombs, some semi-significant numbers at the polls) secession movement.

      Incidentally, I’m not sure where you get the idea that I dislike the American automobile suburb. It isn’t for me but I’ve got nothing against it — though I do like pointing out that it’s largely a result of social engineering, not the free market. It’s a bit of American social history that’s interesting and that many people are unaware of. (Most people seem to think that the automobile suburbs just kinda happened. They take ’em for granted. But in fact they were engineered into existence.) I do know that some people who like the automobile suburbs feel defensive when the fact that the ‘burbs were engineered into existence is pointed out. They feel like they’re being attacked, I guess. But I don’t what to do about that. Some people should just toughen up a little, IMHO.

      • The hippies, all of them, genuinely believed in collectivism with a human face.

        But collectivism does not genuinely have a human face.

        Capitalism produces homes, collectivism produces housing. Predictably, the hippies failed to produce homes,succeeded in producing housing. Thus, brutalist student dorms everywhere, but you cannot find any domes.

  27. Small thought? It can be helpful to think of the ’60s (and the Boomers) not as One Big Thing but as many different things. If you search for the One Big Generalization about the ’60s that somehow Explains It All, you’re going to wind up misleading yourself. It wasn’t all peace and love, of course, but it also wasn’t all totalitarians-with-a-hippie-veneer either. There was a political element. There was an intellectual element. There was a cultural element. The high art people went off in a bunch of directions and the pop cult people went off in a bunch of directions. The early computer people (you like your personal computers? B. Gates and S. Jobs are/were boomers) were a factor — read Steven Levy’s “Hackers,” and one thing you’ll learn is about the interconnections between the hippie ethos and the early days of personal computing. There was a Whole Earth Catalogue crowd. There was a burning-up-the-trust-fund sex-and-drugs crowd, but it’s just as true that Goldwater was an inspiration to many, and that the Young Republicans got a boost during that same era. Younger boomers could be VERY irreverent about older boomers. The Punk rock moment was an expression of younger boomers’ impatience with their older hippie siblings, for instance.

    It ALL happened. There are a few markers that nearly everyone shared, sure — most people watched some of the same TV, had an opinion about Woodstock, Vietnam and Nixon, and heard some of the same pop tunes. And “the ’60s” itself was certainly something that did happen. But people experienced the time in a whole variety of ways. Best just to admit that straight-off and give up the effort to put One Big Label on what was in reality a whole bushel full of phenomena.

    IMHO, of course. But picturing the era this way has certainly been useful for me.

    • > “It ALL happened. ”

      No it did not all happen, because the biggest thing they intended to happen was collectivism with a human face, which they could not make happen any more than they could make unicorns happen.

      The domes were part of a vision of collectively produced homes. Instead, they got collectively produced housing, and thus, few domes, and those few soon abandoned, but plenty of vast masses of brutalist concrete.

      • idealart says:

        Disagree. If anything the 60s was about rampant self-realization and unbridled adolescent rebellion to the past. You pretended to be collectivist because it drove your parents starkers. This was the generation of the Permissive Society. The Graduate, with Dustin Hoffman. And the pill. As someone said earlier on, getting laid. Collectivism is not being a libertine.

    • jamesd127 says:

      On 9/20/2012 6:20 AM, Foseti wrote:
      > wasn’t all totalitarians-with-a-hippie-veneer either.

      The evidence you point to shows a widespread, genuine and heartfelt desire for collectivism on a human scale and with a human face.

      And probably also a widespread, genuine and heartfelt desire for collectivism with pink unicorns.

  28. And one more book rec: Rick Pearlstein’s “Nixonland.” Pearlstein’s a leftie but it’s a really fair and open discussion of Nixon’s emergence and significance, as well as a terrific social-history-type discussion of the ’50s-thru-’70s. It isn’t a bore — Pearlstein’s too young to have been involved in the era’s arguments, so he isn’t just re-hashing all the old battles. He brings some actual perspective to bear. I dreaded reading it but wound up being glad I did read it.

  29. In a spirit of muddying the waters further, lemme point out that some of the gurus of the current Paleo movement are Boomers — Gary Taubes and Mark Sisson, for instance. So we owe not just the Berkeley-vegetarian-socialist side of the health-and-fitness discussion to the Boomers, but also much of the low-carb-Paleo-libertarian reaction against it.

    You can certainly state that the general health-and-fitness, food-and-exercise-and-lifestyle concern that’s such a factor in contempo life got a huge boost thanks to the ’60s — that’s where jogging started, for instance, and god knows a lot of lousy “health food” was consumed. (And very few publications prior to the ’60s ran “lifestyle” sections — lifestyle journalism was definitely a Boomer creation.) But which side of the debate do you assign to “the Boomers”? Socialist-veggie, or libertarian-Paleo? It’s both, really.

  30. Awesome, James. I’ve shown that Brutalism wasn’t a creation of the Boomers and hippies … I’ve shown that tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of domes were built … I’ve provided names and information about a sizable and influential bottom-up, local-is-good-and-smaller-is-generally-better wing of “the ’60s” … And, despite the many facts I’ve offered up, you’re still asserting that the hippies were ALL top-down collectivists who imposed a lot of Brutalism on the rest of us. OK, don’t let me (or well-established history) get in your way.

    If anyone else is intrigued, though, Wikipedia’s entries on The Whole Earth Catalogue, on Kevin Kelly, E.F. Schumacher, Buckminster Fuller, Stewart Brand, J. Baldwin, Kirkpatrick Sale, Christopher Alexander, and Jane Jacobs are all good intros to the phenom. The various links that branch off from those articles are worth exploring too.

    • ”I’ve shown that Brutalism wasn’t a creation of the Boomers and hippies ”

      Brutalist architecture goes all the way back to the nineteenth century, foreshadowing the totalitarianism of the twentieth century. But the brutalist architecture that most people encounter today was built on college campuses after the hippie takeover of academia.

      I suppose they thought they would build geodesic domes, but somehow, they did not.

      That umpteen thousand domes were built is a statistic on par with joyful peasants on the collective bringing in the bountiful soviet harvest.

      They intended small geodesic domes, rather than brutalist concrete masses. in the same way that the communists intended joyful peasants rather than the Ukraine famine.

      Somehow it just did not work out that way, and I don’t think they deserve credit for their perfectly genuine good intentions.

      > you’re still asserting that the hippies were ALL top-down collectivists who imposed a lot of Brutalism on the rest of us.

      The presence of Brutalist architecture on campus, and the absence of domes, tells us what became of all those good intentions.

      Good intentions are easily claimed, and even actions are hard to see, but buildings are permanent and visible. What the hippies talked about building universally expressed their good intentions. What they actually built universally expressed malevolence, hatred, and the arrogant lust for power.

  31. RS-prime says:

    > Disagree. If anything the 60s was about rampant self-realization and unbridled adolescent rebellion to the past. You pretended to be collectivist because it drove your parents starkers. This was the generation of the Permissive Society. The Graduate, with Dustin Hoffman. And the pill. As someone said earlier on, getting laid. Collectivism is not being a libertine.

    Am 30ish, but strongly tend to agree. This may not Explain it all, but it’s the main dish here.

    Nietzsche discussed this, probably in ‘Jenseits’: Societies exist under discipline because of danger ; they may ultimately become stronger than the various plausible combinations of dangers, and then the individual, particularly every kind of divergent person, comes increasingly to the fore. (The divergence is why there isn’t One True theory of the 60’s, and yet at the same time, there is.) An obvious example is Rome. This process has good and bad aspects. Conversely, societies under discipline enforce a narrow spectrum of utterly pragmatic mores, roles, and types: be thus, or thus, or pretty freaking close, because that’s what we need to protect this society from destruction — everything and everyone we have known. Look, life has fucking nil to do with your precious particularity and your ‘thoughts’ on shit. ‘Your parents’ along with a bunch of horrid squares understood this from congenital instinct and experiences like 1914-1945, which is why they went snorting mad.

    Sure, some handful of people were seriously fired up, from the fucking soles up, about collectivism — to the extent that it considerably displaced many other concerns — not too many. Jim is probably projecting. He likes to contemplate society and history minutely, sweepingly, repeatedly, to an extent that considerably displaces many other concerns. Most people are way more into watching mediocre TV shows, or, what’s better, just going swimming and doing various stuff like that. Easygoing. As much as a fair fraction of people may have at least some redeeming value in their nature, they don’t feel serious passions for things like knowledge, or superb physical challenges, or meditation, or painting — on the regular, month after month, year after year. They may be pretty passionate about their children or something, which is certainly an excellent thing, and more common and natural.

    I was talking about much the same thing as you are talking about. Hesse, Gaugin, Kerouac, Rimbaud, already did all these things… ‘no rules’ … ‘no gods, no masters’. So did Nietzsche, Blake, Socrates. Many other pre-moderns as well, to the more limited extent that they could get away with it. But being fierce-hearted, well-born to varying degrees, they performed their libertinism under (perhaps wavering) autonomous discipline, being congenitally disgusted by degeneracy and treasuring the ideal very genuinely. They did not really need to be disciplined by social structures, these structures had almost no marginal value for them personally. And all of that is manifest in their work: they did a good job (perhaps excluding Kerouac, a cool man but a rather lesser light). Some disintegrated partially like Klimt and Schiele, they indulged a bit much. They couldn’t handle quite the same heights that Kokoschka repeatedly occupied, he was just a hair stronger and freer. Kokoschka’s advantage over those two was very subtle, though well worth having, but the point is more that the large majority of people would be noticeably-to-grossly devalued or ruined by imitating the lifestyle of any of these libertines. And indeed they are.

    • RS-prime says:

      > Sure, some handful of people were seriously fired up, from the fucking soles up, about collectivism — to the extent that it considerably displaced many other concerns — not too many.

      Not too many _people_, that is. Some handful.

    • RS-prime says:

      Ordinary people do not understand things thoroughly, extensively. They cannot get a handle on it. I’ve mentioned the high excitability of libertines like Gaugin, Nietzsche, or Alexander (earlier named Christopher) McCandless, by way of which they envisioned the ideal again and again, every week, and bucked wild against ugliness, weakness, mediocrity, stupidity — over and over, refreshing themselves. (“Not the intensity but the duration of high feelings, makes high men” — this seems at least mostly true.)

      Normal people draw strength, energy, passion from tradition, which supplements their lower levels of excitability. This helps them to avoid being, basically, lame, being Nietzsche’s ‘last man’. They also draw tons of sheer practical information from tradition, and wind up getting an extensive handle on things. That’s the only way they can halfway figure out what will happen if they do X. McCandless already understood what would happen, by intuition. His intellect, taste, were vibrant but crude, partly because of his young age, yet he truly did ‘see the world in a grain of sand’ and had direct access to both spiritual and practical wisdom, though he also built it up through experience like everyone. He had a handle on a ton of things. (He didn’t die because of idiocy about pragmatic affairs or an inability to perceive and prepare for them. He intentionally placed himself in a thinly-prepared, thinly-comprehended situation in order to heighten his vitality. Ie, he understood what an amazing resource a fine map of wild country is, which is why he didn’t bring one.)

      Ram Dass really did have ‘fierce grace’, even though he was very dumb, like Kerouac, in maintaining that large numbers of people ought to imitate him (the very opposite libertine is Nietzsche, the wisest and cleverest one of them all, who maintained the exact opposite). The idea that large numbers of people ought to imitate you is very flattering, and Dass did not have much of a handle on how stupid this idea was — but he had a huge handle on tons of practical questions. I’m not saying these men were geniuses in practical affairs, /truly/ distinguished — merely that their practicality was high, excellent. In excitability they were truly distinguished. But Socrates was not truly distinguished in practical understanding, so he tended to be somewhat damaging to Athens, as described by Nietzsche in his repeated contemplations of Socrates — though it was also already damaging itself or in any case being damaged somehow.

      Alrenous has a plan for man which is hyperliberal at the top, but which he suggests will probably result largely in potent, firmly-acting aristocracies and such, after a renovating episode of radical incoercion: so it’s a plan for incoercive coercion, a plan for people to freely go and find the coercion that matches their nature. This could be compared, in spirit and radicalness though probably not in detail, with Stirner’s plan for free unions of enlightened egoist libertines. Alrenous holds that normal people will be able to figure out where they belong, which I doubt will really happen to the extent he thinks: instead, they will be more than half confused.

      Blathering abstractly is not intelligent. Let us consider concretely what sorts of utterly practical affairs people do not understand, which they ordinarily grasp through tradition. The best example is epidemic betaism-herbism in men and androgyny and stupidity in women. Foseti was just citing the silliness of careerish chicks who fail to comprehend that their aging, defeminization, and reduced sexual-emotional innocence renders their plans for marriage at age 30 impractical and strange. They do not grasp that normal women’s relationship to their man, and the world, increasingly takes place through their children, as they reach ages like 38, 47, and become not so exciting sexually. Being 21, 25, they do not deeply cognize the concept of ever /not/ being hot as hell, while men of the same age do not deeply cognize danger and death (this causes some casualties, but is actually less of a problem because many times fewer people get damaged). Roissy, while not emphasizing children, otherwise does a powerful job of pointing out the opposite of this (namely reality) to college-age girls, granting them phronesis (practical wisdom) which they could not possibly achieve inside our antitraditional reality-distortion field. This is absolutely concrete information about reality and what will happen in it (divorce, spinsterism, frustration), quite different from anything high-flown, refined, and spiritual which tradition might /also/ grant a person. Needless to say he has also pointed out a thing or two to guys. All gamers agree that phronetic cues for men about what women seek, sexually, were utterly omnipresent in the semitraditional culture of the west up through the peri-WW2 period. You can just watch the movies yourself and see. Most people were probably semiconscious of the sexual phronesis they imbibed from these movies and could not give a good account of it in explicit terms, they just learned how to do it. These cultural cues still exist in periods like the 1990s (a few of them quite striking and incredibly concentrated: Fight Club) or 2004, they are just 5-10x thinner on the ground whereas there is lots of disinformation.

      The application to thinking about the 60s and about 1965-2008 is presumably obvious. I’m not saying these processes born from the 60s largely ceased to advance after 2008, but they may have.

      • Alrenous says:

        Is there a story why you’re now RS` instead of plain RS?

        I use a technical definition of coercion, which excises some of its growths so that I can contemplate the consequences more precisely. My coercion is essentially a precise definition of aggression, such that it is impossible to choose to be coerced. So, to be exact, the idea is that the individual can be assumed to endorse their system of physical enforcement of norms, because they’re allowed to exit it if they don’t.

        I’d like to think most will be able to figure out where they belong. What I actually think is that the aristocracy would compete for followers. Most people, being gullible, will fall for one or another. However, having de-ligitimized coercion, someone who doesn’t fall for it is no longer forced to pick one. As a result, libertines no longer have the urge to try to enact a ’60s, because it simply isn’t necessary.

        The other thing is I don’t want to argue about what would happen. I want to take a volunteer town and try it to see what would happen. A trial is worth a thousand arguments.

    • jamesd127 says:

      > “Jim is probably projecting. He likes to contemplate society and history minutely, sweepingly, repeatedly, to an extent that considerably displaces many other concerns. Most people are way more into watching mediocre TV shows,”

      Your argument is similar to the argument that 99% of Muslims are harmless. 99% of Muslims are harmless, but in that they piously subscribe to a doctrine that is deadly if sincerely believed and firmly acted upon, they provide a favorable environment for the one percent that actually take these beliefs seriously and act upon them.

      And 99% of hippies were harmless in the same sense as 99% of Muslims are harmless, which is to say, not harmless at all.

      • RS-prime says:

        hmmm interesting

      • RS-prime says:

        Still, the goodly majority were mostly out there for the permissiveness, no? So ‘permissiveness’ and ‘collecto/dove/collectodove power’ probably aren’t highly antagonistic lenses on the 60s, instead they may be pretty complementary.

        Islam is comparable inasmuch as it has excitement and a concerning political program, but quite contrasting in that it’s fueled by normal people coming out for an /im/permissiveness of sorts, a tradition.

  32. RS-prime says:

    > The other thing is I don’t want to argue about what would happen. I want to take a volunteer town and try it to see what would happen. A trial is worth a thousand arguments.

    RS began to be inconsistently accepted at several wordpress blogs, could be a matter of my scurrilous conduct but I think it’s just technical.

    I am unconvinced by your experiment because there just isn’t that much in the way of salient institutions/customs and salient identitary concerns at the town level. I mean depending on what you mean by town — but still. And certainly there are no military concerns. So at that small level, you won’t be disrupting all that much through your renovation. It’s primarily at a larger scale that we see human ecologies manifest really saliently — to start with, identitary groups (mostly racial, also religious) hewing together for self-defensive and spiritual-affective reasons, inter alia.

    I guess I’m not staunchly opposed to the enactment of your renovation (or pan-secessionism more broadly) or elements thereof, just really skeptical. And I of course confess to White preservation desires.

    Your renovation also seems more like something that would happen in an engineered future world with an IQ mean of 120, and also the kind of Agreeableness and Conscientiousness that tend to be found with such IQs. In that world, newly-formed poles or polities might refrain from conquest and violence ; in this world your renovation seems considerably more apt to degenerate to warlordism than it would be in that world.

    • Alrenous says:

      Re: warlordism, two things. You seem to be thinking democratically still. Aristocracies bottom out around 120. Even if there were indeed warlords at first, they’d rapidly grind each other’s property to dust, and run out of things to make war with. You can only survive being dumb enough to go to war if it’s okay to spend other people’s stuff to do it.

      Second, every single time someone has proposed more freedom, you get these kinds of ‘but everything will break’ objections, and nearly every time, the opposite has happened.

      In my case, any institution you think is necessary…well, it is possible to re-create it through contract law. Or simple persuasion. Freedom includes the freedom to hew to tradition.

      With the Dunbar number at around 150, fragmenting a town is easy. Heck, if that’s your real objection, I could intentionally fragment it.

      Secondly, there’s a scaling part to the plan. The idea is to find the smallest scale it breaks at, then stop. Fix it if possible, abandon if not. Soviet systems break under 150. Imagine they actually cared about workers instead of power – they could have abandoned the plan with only one or two dead instead of what they got.

      Evolution works by killing off bad ideas. Technically humans can be convinced instead of having to be overthrown, but in practise that’s not important.

      Having a superpower means a huge number of people need to be thrown into chaos for a bad idea to die. Which in turn means huge numbers want to keep bad ideas alive, chaos being worse. In turn, entropy being what it is, it means hugeness directly endorses bad ideas.

      • jamesd127 says:

        Your assertion that aristocracies bottom out at IQ 120 is consistent with Lord Garnet’s observation that the Ashantee aristocracy and royalty were typically as intelligent as English gentlemen, despite the fact that Ashantee commoners were mentally similar to children.

        Do you have any other evidence on the topic? It seems plausible, and I would like to believe it true.

        Obviously the dysfunctional remnant of an aristocracy that no longer rules nor is capable of ruling (for example the English aristocracy) could well bottom out a lot lower, so it is not a matter that the aristocracy is guaranteed to be smart, but that if it does not keep itself smart, it will not be able to rule.

      • Alrenous says:

        I don’t have good specific estimates, but for example I was able to confirm Moldbug’s assertion that the monarchies weren’t murdered, they committed suicide.

        Louis XVI was well aware of the growing discontent of the French population against the absolute monarchy. The first part of his reign is marked by his attempts to reform the kingdom in accordance with the Enlightenment ideals (abolition of torture, abolition of the serfdom, tolerance towards Jews and Protestants, abolition of the Taille etc.)”

        Compassionate. Knowledge-loving. Therefore, unfortunately, incompetent. But noble.

        I don’t have much direct evidence, just a big pile of this kind of circumstantial evidence. Off the cuff;

        The very association of ‘nobility’ with virtue and not oppression and graft.

        It’s consistent with competition for power. Legally, estates may pass to elder males regardless, but in practice if your eldest is dumb then the estate won’t survive…or else the eldest will have a hunting accident.

        The main purpose of human brain evolution is to hack the brains of other humans – there’s a natural aristocracy.

        The popularity of personal libraries – to the point where unread libraries was a common joke.

        The Royal Society appeared spontaneously. And was endorsed, not ridiculed from envy.

        Et cetera.

  33. RS-prime says:

    Why after all is it cool to be gulled, but not to be coerced?

    It wouldn’t have anything to do with the fact that /you and I/ will never be gulled, and we fuckin’ spit-hate to be coerced — ? An awesome teacher told me everyone likes, praises, and promotes those conditions under which he himself succeeds.

    Not to blow my own horn, but you’ve led me right to an interesting thing: isn’t tradition largely about the (partial) ‘right’ /not/ to be gulled? Not to wake up and realize you’ve been playing the fool all along, going backwards, arrogating what you shouldn’t, being led around by evolutionarily-novel ‘superstimuli’, and so forth — that you’ve been ushered since years and years toward a vacuous chamber? I’m grasping for something vague…… but I think that’s a lot of what I was trying to describe about tradition in my posts. It too will gull ye, but it’s kind of a ‘noble gull’.

    • Alrenous says:

      Gulling is unavoidable. Technically speaking you could teach the average to use logic and stuff. It’s not physically impossible. Also, you could buy me a pony. Also also, it would solve the confusion problem.

      Technically speaking, you could reduce lying and delusion to minimal levels. See pony.

      I disagree about tradition. All that I’ve looked at seem to be exquisitely designed to lead the average around by the nose. But let’s say you’re correct.

      Either the average can keep to a tradition, or they are vulnerable to being pulled away by superstimuli and the like.

      If the first, aristocrats hawking tradition will win the race for followers. If not, it doesn’t matter what system your society uses.

  34. RS-prime says:

    > Even if there were indeed warlords at first, they’d rapidly grind each other’s property to dust, and run out of things to make war with.

    Why do you seem to be envisaging a deputation of 462 Vikings — I grant, I’m in a sour mood and being hyperbolic — instead of 100,000 airplanes? Flying back and forth hundreds of times each, with enormous bombs? It seems like people may lose sight of your whole politik in the considerable jostling produced thereby.

    > You seem to be thinking democratically still. Aristocracies bottom out around 120.

    Having aristoi or aristo-oids head things up will not suffice to resolve problems placidly or semi-placidly.

    General antidemotism is a crucial principle, but it’s not a complete solution to the problems arising in your scenarios, nor is it a complete solution to anything.

    Mussolini, Stalin, Hitler, Lenin, and Trotsky were blisteringly talented and so were their pals. It might well be L0&05 itself to say they were not true aristoi, not being w i s e enough to be so accounted. What you cannot controvert is that they were high aristoi in almost all other ways, and took over tons of countries like it was no big thing. In particular, they reached high levels of discipline, realism, intelligence, perception, and bravery. Their successes speak for themselves, even though all their successes were transitory, except Stalin’s preserving Slavs from servitude and/or total annihilation-assimilation. (As I recall, there was a nazi plan to assimilate some fraction of superior Poles/Slavs.)

    It’s not super clear what antidemotism is or ought to be. We know that the above men, roughly aristocratic, indulged in something we recognize as demotism — and we know that instructors of theirs, such as Nietzsche and possibly(?) Machiavelli, and later critics, like Moldberg, warned against this. Yet they did it anyway, and avoiding it would seem to be far from trivial, and in particular somewhat more fraught than is cognized by you. Nietzsche of course never had to actually govern a land directly, and he also permitted himself a sort of manic hysteria which we can see probably greatly influenced the affect, meaning, /geist/, and concrete events of the early and middle 20th.

    > every single time someone has proposed more freedom, you get these kinds of ‘but everything will break’ objections, and nearly every time, the opposite has happened.

    That does not necessarily accord with your own picture of the present world, which you seem to dislike, as being, basically, festooned with vapid TV shows and other losses of virtue. Perhaps you really do consider this superior or at least equal to say Europe in 1902, but that is not the impression I formed of your feelings.

    • RS-prime says:

      > Perhaps you really do consider this superior or at least equal to say Europe in 1902, but that is not the impression I formed of your feelings.

      Continuing, your critique of the present has a further aspect, beyond a sensation of vapidity.

      Namely, you consider it a grotesque poverty that people be deprived — at least in a degree — of their ‘awareness of their own awareness’, under the epistemically dubious regime of ontological materialism.

      I don’t think you are calling this a logico-philosophical poverty, as if the problem were just “shit, man is holding a logically weak view”. I take you as saying that man is existentially, or affectively, spiritually, /geistig/ or…. somethingly… diminished by this delusion. His value declines, not just as a ‘logician’ — we agree that mankind in the main is no logician anyway.

      I already acknowledged that tradition(s) gull but I called it a ‘noble gull’ (noble lie). Some gull you less than others, like Zen or Tao. At the same time, as has been much discussed, there may be something of a ‘perennial Tradition’ in which they all participate in some degree. They all have something to do with states like prayer and meditation, also various allied states. Even the activity of an avowed atheist like Nietzsche is very concerned with, and includes, states with some of this approximate character, though I admit this is vague. Vaguer yet: sagacity may have something to do with these sort of states. Now, while you complain of the weakness of ontological materialism as episteme — i.e. it seems unlikely to be true or at least seems quite poorly supportable — you are also very critical of its effects, as I already said. I would suggest that Tradition can elevate people’s existence along roughly the same lines that ontological materialism, pace you (and me), can diminish it. Why this would not be fairly plain to you, I’m not real sure. As for all the superstition with which Tradition has been larded, I’m not necessarily much less patient with it than you are. Having attended very closely to the lectures of Nietzsche, I’m least patient with Christianity (Eastern Orthodoxy less so), and after that, Buddhism at large. Accordingly, I have arrived at the only reasonable position, viz. anti-materialist, identitarian (‘racial idealist’) Zen Vedanta Spinozan pan-atheism.

      • RS-prime says:

        Or should i say pan(a)theism. To see more exactly what I mean, simply watch a randomly-selected good movie on any subject.

  35. Alrenous says:

    I don’t see how it matters what the warlords decide to destroy themselves with. See the first paragraph under ‘Europe’ in Foseti’s newest. When A and B fight, the winner is C. Sun Tzu knew this well enough to write it down explicitly.

    Everyone prone to starting wars would run out of stuff to fund wars with, if they weren’t allowed to confiscate other people’s stuff to fund it with. It happens eventually even when they are allowed.

    Indeed. (Ctrl-f “heirs”) What current legitimacy structures mean is that the government is allowed to confiscate certain kinds of wealth if and only if they’re going to war. It is as if it were explicitly designed to keep their skin out of the game – the ruling elite has literally no use for this stuff except spending it on war.

    It’s not super clear what antidemotism is or ought to be.

    Hence the competition between aristocrats. They’ll differ; the better ones will thrive.

    The men you mention are all from the sophist tradition, which is inherently demotic. They could only thrive by suppressing competition, which they could only do because they had seized the legitimized-coercion structure that is their government.

    That does not necessarily accord with your own picture of the present world, which you seem to dislike, as being, basically, festooned with vapid TV shows and other losses of virtue.

    Deliberate and successful soviet psychological warfare strategy. Summary Long form. The soviets no longer exist.

    Even the activity of an avowed atheist like Nietzsche is very concerned with, and includes, states with some of this approximate character, though I admit this is vague

    I suspect I know what you mean. It’s normally misnomed spiritual and it has to do with transcendent vs. base values….yes? The difference between satisfaction by food and moral satisfaction.

    I would suggest that Tradition can elevate people’s existence along roughly the same lines that ontological materialism, pace you (and me), can diminish it.

    As before, freedom includes the freedom to hew to tradition. As before, if tradition is good, its followers will thrive. If tradition cannot withstand assault by superstimuli as so forth, it doesn’t matter what kind of society you have.

    I don’t know and I don’t much care. I’d rather create an environment where tradition’s enemies cannot use a veneer of legitimacy to violently suppress it. And vice-versa, of course.

    Or should i say pan(a)theism.

    Sorry, no idea what you mean. Assuming your explanation is true, apparently I’ve never seen a good movie.

  36. RS-prime says:

    > When A and B fight, the winner is C. Sun Tzu knew this well enough to write it down explicitly.

    Obviously a key insight, but totally, totally over reductive if you take it this far.

    > I don’t see how it matters what the warlords decide to destroy themselves with.

    So it doesn’t matter if 100,000 airplanes mount to the skies and lay waste to half of civilization — /again/. Yet you have elsewhere considered me hypo-empathic. (Granted, have done so quasi at my invitation.) hmmm.

    • Alrenous says:

      > Yet you have elsewhere considered me hypo-empathic. (Granted, have done so quasi at my invitation.)

      Which this is further evidence of. You really think that I’m proposing to let someone lay waste to half of humanity?

      Can you think of how I might think otherwise?

  37. RS-prime says:

    > The men you mention are all from the sophist tradition, which is inherently demotic. They could only thrive by suppressing competition, which they could only do because they had seized the legitimized-coercion structure that is their government.

    Yes but that’s what always happens, or very regularly does.

    Indeed, the dark, very dark interpretation is that you are, in a mass media/tech age, going to get more guys like them than you will get guys like George Monck or Napoleon. –Or even, that genomic clones of Monck and Napoleon would turn out, in a mass society context, to actually act and be more like those guys.

    That’s why I suggested a renovation like yours might be far more fitting in a near-transhuman future.

    If you accept, as I do, that the near-transhuman future will probably be much less prone to massive self-destruction, then you think about how we could possibly limp to that saving oasis by hook or crook, rather than focusing on doing grand Alrenic renovations right now because they are (according to some people) ethically right.

    As I originally said when I first started prodding you, why are you so focused on these ethical principles — when the world (or at least the West, but possibly the world) is arguably at major existential risk from things like dysgenesis, advanced cultural-intellectual decadence, and the demotic revolutions that could flow from them. You seem to give little consideration to the possibility that these concerns ‘out-salient’ your lofty ideals of noncoercion. Your mind is haunted by axioms and individuals when the total system matters more — even for the fate of the individuals. Any Slav would immediately say so.

  38. Alrenous says:

    >As I originally said when I first started prodding you, why are you so focused on these ethical principles

    My apologies, I totally missed that. (And still can’t be arsed to go look at what exactly I missed.)

    > You seem to give little consideration to the possibility that these concerns ‘out-salient’ your lofty ideals of noncoercion.

    Not exactly. I believe that all of those problems, without exception, are because of moral ineptitude. People do bad things and aren’t called on them. Specifically, all of these things are only possible because of legitimized coercion.

    Dysgenics – deliberate support of barbarous behaviour, suppressing natural self-defence, funded by coercive taxation.

    Intellectual decadence – perverse grant-writing incentives, funded by coercive taxes.

    Demotic revolution – suppression of freedom of association.

    Stop considering the imposition of ideology as legitimate, and a huge number of problems simply vanish. Unless, of course, they’re not problems at all, in which case they will be welcomed, instead of resisted.

    I’m always a little confused how someone can understand so much of what I don’t remember saying and yet miss things I have very explicitly said.

    I’m exquisitely sensitive to the plight of the Slavs.

    All such theories, promoting themselves as good-of-all-mankind theories, must manifest themselves as personal benefits to most individuals. I’m a mereological nihilist.

    Which is why I say, test it first on the smallest possible reasonable unit. I actually think 30 people or so would be a good prelim. This is in stark contrast to Sophist theories, which always must be applied to the most people possible, as soon as possible.

  39. “Review of The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test
    by Tom Wolfe Foseti” was in fact a very good posting.
    If it possessed even more pics it would likely
    be quite possibly much better. Cya ,Ashley

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