Can North Korea Teach the West How to Have A Humane Cannabis Policy?

Our media has been giving us the Two Minute Hate about North Korea for over two decades. Anyone who has read 1984 knows that most of the reason for this is to distract from the crimes of our own politicians and industrial leaders. One of these crimes is the War on Cannabis: Western Governments could learn from the North Koreans how to have a humane, honest and fair cannabis policy.

For the past 40-50 years, Western Governments have conducted a War on Drugs against their own people, without the consent of those people. Trillions have been spent during these decades to persecute tens of millions of Western citizens, many of whom had not caused any harm to anyone. This mass human rights abuse – because that’s what it is – continues to this day, despite small wins for the people in some areas.

This War on Drugs has been justified with a rhetoric so clumsy and corrupt that even a 1930s-era propagandist would be embarrassed by the lack of subtlety. From the infamous “Reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men” to “Cannabis use causes psychosis” to today’s horseshit stories about how buying cannabis is supporting Mexican narcoterrorism, no more hamfisted effort has ever been made to sell anything.

For roughly half a century, Western families have been ripped apart from having one of their family members sent to prison for a cannabis offence. Tens of millions have been forced into a traumatic encounter with the Police and justice or prison systems, treated as criminals when most were mentally ill and needed help. In America in 2016, there were 574,641 people charged with the crime of simple cannabis possession.

One would expect then, that the punishment for cultivating cannabis in a place as fundamentally evil as North Korea would be horrifically draconian and senseless. If it’s up to seven years imprisonment in New Zealand it must surely be life in prison or even execution there.

To the contrary – far from scheduling cannabis as belonging to the most dangerous category of addictive drugs with no medicinal value as America does, North Korea doesn’t even consider cannabis a drug. Not only are people free to cultivate it without sanction, but it grows freely by the roadside in many places, being a weed and not being subject to eradication programs. North Koreans are free to harvest and smoke it every single day – and they do.

Many would personally be happy to trade all the supposed Western freedoms to drink booze, watch television and chase loose women for the freedom to smoke cannabis, have quality conversations with intelligent people and at the end of the night still be capable of maintaining an erection. So one has to ask: who’s actually better off?

The thawing of relations between the West and North Korea might have implications for cannabis policy in the West. Those Westerners who are still labouring under primitive superstitions such as “cannabis causes brain damage and therefore people should go to prison for it” might learn something from the more enlightened approach taken by the North Korean Government.

Perhaps North Korea could send advisors to the West to educate our politicians about how large industries conspired to make cannabis illegal for the sake of wiping out a competitor, and that keeping it prohibited is actually an immoral thing to do. These North Koreans could also be tasked with going through our Police and justice system employees to root out the sadists who believed that imprisoning someone was ever a fair or reasonable response to drug possession, because they are morally defective and cannot be trusted to serve the public.

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VJMP Reads: David Seymour’s Own Your Future III

A Liberal Vision for New Zealand in 2017

This reading carries on from here.

The second chapter of Own Your Future is titled ‘Tax’. Seymour opens with a complaint about wasteful government spending, citing the example of Gerry Brownlee flying to San Francisco on the taypayer’s dollar for a photo op. Indeed this was an appalling waste of money for no benefit to the nation, but Seymour leaps from this fact to the tacit assumption that all tax money is likewise wasted.

Seymour is right when he says it’s stupid that the Government is running surpluses while the average New Zealand household is at record levels of debt. The solution is, naturally, lower taxes. Here Seymour makes a sharp distinction between “our own” money, and “another person’s” money. Not for him the interdependence of all things. In Seymour’s world, there are very clear lines over who owns what.

Government takes in taxes equal to 40% of GDP, Seymour notes – “exclusively” another person’s money. Seymour doesn’t agree with the idea that the state is the most efficient provider of many services on account of the economies of scale afforded by its unique size. For him, the Government is merely a parasitic entity that sucks tax money out of hard-working Kiwis and wastes it frivolously.

Breaking step with the usual neoliberal choice of target, Seymour points out that there is a tremendous amount of corporate welfare in New Zealand as well. This only lasts for a few sentences, because he’s soon back to crying about taxation. Bracket creep comes in for particular ire – for Seymour, the wealthy aren’t getting a big enough share of the spoils of economic growth.

True to being a politician, he is dishonest. He claims that bracket creep happens because wages rise (which is true) but he also claims that wages rise to meet the increase in the price of consumer goods. The truth is that wages are not linked to the inflation of consumer goods – they are a function of the relative leverage that the employer has over the employee. When consumer goods become more expensive, this gives the employee absolutely no additional leverage through which they can negotiate a higher wage with their employer. If anything, it gives them less leverage because the lower standard of living makes them more desperate to settle.

In one paragraph, Seymour abandons even the pretense of reasoning and simply lists American libertarian slogans: “High tax rates… drag the economy down”, “people spend their money better than governments do”, “Money goes more good in the private sector than in the public sector.” Again one senses the cold shadow of the millions starved to death by Communism.

Seymour makes some good and fair points when he talks about the bureaucratic waste in the system. The problem is that this waste is the only thing he sees – all Government spending is hip-hop tours and junkets to San Francisco. He will not acknowledge that tax money is used for anything good, or that taxpayers get anything back for their tax money. National are the good guys because they levy less tax; Labour are bad and the Greens are the worst of all.

It’s hard to disagree, however, when he complains about the top tax bracket being $70,000. One doesn’t have to be wealthy to concede that someone earning $70,000 a year is far from loaded.

In all, one feels that Seymour is capable of making some good points but has a dishonest method for selecting and presenting them to the reader. Despite that, it’s easily arguable that Seymour and his party are tasked with playing an important role in New Zealand politics – that of keeping a check on Government waste – even though they are apologists for neoliberalism.

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Why the 2018 Labour Budget Was so Underwhelming

The 2018 Budget, like the 2000 one, was extremely tight; the 2020 Budget will be a lolly scramble, as the 2002 one was

“Yet, for all the hype, [the Finance Minister and the Prime Minister] were at pains to reassure big business and employer groups that this was above all a ‘fiscally responsible’ budget. Its commitments to social spending would not jeopardise Labour’s intention to maintain a surplus, they emphasised…” The two Labour Party politicians mentioned here are Grant Robertson and Jacinda Ardern, speaking in 2018 right? Wrong – they are Michael Cullen and Helen Clark, speaking 18 years ago in the year 2000.

The quote in the opening paragraph comes from this article from 2000, discussing the first Budget of the new Fifth Labour Government. Other quotes of interest from the same source are: “the increases fall far short of what is required to address the acute levels of social and economic inequality now embedded deep within the social structure”, “The majority of families forced to rent from private landlords will be no better off than before” and “Labour and the Alliance have done nothing to restore the vicious cuts to unemployment benefits and welfare that were implemented by the National Party”.

So if you’ve been listening to the Sixth Labour Government explain why this year’s Budget helps almost no-one and you’re starting to realise that you’ve heard this exact same bullshit story before, sit tight while we explain why – and what’s going to happen next.

After nine of years of neglect, including closing down rape crisis centres and overseeing the world’s highest youth suicide rate, the Fifth National Government was finally – although narrowly – voted out of power. The Sixth Labour Government came to power with a strong commitment and mandate to do something about the rape and pillage of the New Zealand populace by the plutocrats.

So the 2018 Budget surprised many commentators with how weak it was. The consensus described it as “National-lite”, and, indeed, it did almost nothing to help anyone. Many asked themselves why it was that an incoming Labour Government would deliver such a weak Budget. Didn’t they want to create the impression that they were doing something to help? Why miss this golden opportunity to set things right?

The answer to this conundrum comes from examining the 2002 Budget, which was released a few months before the General Election that year. That year’s Budget sent the New Zealand business community into paroxysms of rage.

The Employers & Manufacturers Association complained that “The huge $3.31 billion increase in new spending in the Budget for the next financial year is more than double the increase in new spending for the past two years combined”, and then National Party leader Bill English was enraged by “Labour and their higher operating balances, as well as higher taxes, increasing debt and billions of taxpayers’ dollars invested overseas”. There was even money for pure luxury items like refugee resettlement.

These increases impressed the population, as they were the first real relief Kiwis had been given in 18 years of relentless neoliberalism, and they duly returned the Labour Party to power. Kiwis contrasted this big spend-up with the cruelty of the National Party Budgets under Ruth Richardson, and the Nats were duly slaughtered, falling to 21% of the votes, their lowest result in 100 years.

It was a lesson for all, not least the Labour Party.

So the reason why the Sixth Labour Government did next to nothing to fix the nine years of neglect that the Fifth National Government put us through is simple: they’re saving the lolly scramble until just before the 2020 General Election. You can almost guarantee that, when the 2020 Budget rolls around, the grip of the New Zealand ruling class around the throat of the population will be loosened just enough to enable us to express our gratitude by returning Jacinda Ardern’s Government to power for a second term.

This is not a nefarious new trick, dreamed up by a crack team of political consultants – it’s straight out of the Helen Clark playbook. We can confidently predict another weak Budget in 2019 before the conspicuous generosity of the 2020 one, and we can also almost guarantee that if Labour wins a second term this would see us having two more weak Budgets in 2021 and 2022 before another lolly scramble in time for the 2023 General Election. Then, if they win a third, there will be weak Budgets in 2024 and 2025 before yet another lolly scramble in 2026.

This pattern is no less predictable than the General Electoral Cycle itself is, and could even be said to be part of it. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

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How to Detect An Anti-White Bigot

Everyone’s obsessed with making a show of fighting bigotry nowadays. Paradise could have befallen the Earth by now, we are told, if only haters didn’t oppress the disadvantaged. The problem with this attitude is that many anti-white bigots have slipped under the radar in the guise of social justice warriors. As this essay will examine, the easiest way to detect an anti-white bigot is by observing hypocritical double standards.

There’s little reason to be prejudiced against anyone unless you hate them. Hating someone may or may not be justified at any given moment, but an inevitable consequence of hating someone is that you will judge them by high standards, while allowing people you don’t hate to get away with low standards. This reveals itself primarily as hypocrisy.

So one way that anti-white bigots give themselves away is in the explanations they give for individual success. For instance, high achieving Asians or Jews are credited with working hard and being from a culture that values scholastic dedication, but high achieving whites are considered merely the beneficiaries of a white supremacist system.

By itself, that means nothing, but anti-white bigots will also make the claim that low achieving whites have failed morally by not valuing education enough, or because they lacked the discipline to study hard or are naturally just dumb, whereas low achieving blacks and browns have been failed by that same white supremacist system.

An objective person would credit both high-achieving Asians and high-achieving whites with having earned at least some of their personal accomplishments, because even with the easiest of upbringings it takes a lot of will to dedicate oneself to learning. If high Asian or Jewish achievement need not be explained by structural racism or exploitation of dark-skinned people, then there’s no reason to attribute white achievement to such things either.

Either that, or they would excuse the failure of low-achieving whites with the same appeal to social and environmental factors that they appeal to when they excuse the failure of black and brown people. After all, it genuinely is a lot harder to succeed when you face prejudice from society – but low-achieving white people have inevitably encountered as much difficulty on account of class prejudice as equally low-achieving brown and black people have encountered on account of race prejudice.

Another way to detect an anti-white bigot is that they will make accusations of racism when unwarranted – but only if a white person is speaking. If a Malaysian says that Muslims are terrorists because of the troubles in the South, or a Chinese says that Muslims are terrorists because of the troubles in the West, the anti-white bigot will say nothing. But if a white person points out that the Koran condones and encourages terrorism, the anti-white bigot will start the attacks.

By contrast, the anti-white bigots will excuse all manner of racism or bigotry from non-white people. This is especially notable in the case of attitudes to homosexuality or gender equality. Anti-homosexual bigotry is rife among brown and black communities, which is believed to contribute heavily to the high rates of youth suicide in those communities. Anti-white bigots will excuse this, however, by saying that these communities have somehow absorbed the prejudice from white people.

A third way to pick an anti-white bigot is that they will blame all white people for actions that are or were committed by a minority of white people, such as owning slaves, or bombing the Middle East. Related to this that the anti-white bigot will often blame a much larger amount of the world’s suffering on white people than what is fair or reasonable. For instance, it will often be claimed that Africa would be a peaceful and highly technologically advanced society if only white people hadn’t ruined it all.

When one gets down to the bottom of it, if a person claims to hate white people, what they often really mean is either that they hate the white working class (because they look down on them) or they hate the white ruling class (because they have caused so much historical damage). A class prejudice is expressed as a racial prejudice and thereby misunderstood.

A real anti-white bigot will make no distinction. They will still blame middle-class white people for the crude violence, abuse and neglect of the white working-class, and they will still blame working-class white people for the greed and duplicitousness of the white middle-class. Even more tellingly, both will be asked to carry the blame for the historical misdeeds of the white upper classes.

In summary, detecting an anti-white bigot is little different to detecting any other kind of bigot. They will hold the object of their hate (white people) to an unrealistically high moral standard, while allowing those who they don’t hate to be judged by a very low moral standard. The greater the double standard, the greater the prejudice.

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Moral Outrage is a Crude Thrill But an Addictive One

It’s evident from the body language of virtue signallers that they exult in the feelings of moral superiority provided by their aggression

It’s possible to become addicted to a wide range of different thrills. Adrenaline, oxytocin, endorphins, dopamine and a slew of other neurotransmitters all create a very specific kind of pleasurable buzz that a person can easily become hooked on. This essay examines the most fashionable addiction in current year: the addiction to moral outrage.

Moral outrage belongs to the class of ego thrills. Within this class are all actions that lead to pleasure on account of letting you think, even if only for a short moment, that you’re better than other people. Belonging to this class are a large number of activities relating to competition and domination.

Alchemically speaking, there are three ways that one person can dominate another person, and these correspond to the three orientations of bravery. One can dominate physically, one can dominate mentally, or one can dominate morally.

Dominating physically is generally looked down upon as an activity befitting children and thugs. Dominating mentally is the obsession of the young adult learning to be a man of silver, and incredible amounts of energy are expended to this end at universities, but most people soon grow out of that.

Dominating morally is where the real self-aggrandisement comes into play, because if this can be achieved then the other forms can be dismissed as less worthy or meaningful. It doesn’t matter if someone dominates you physically or mentally, because you can claim that the act of domination is itself immoral by virtue of being aggressive, and that therefore you, in fact, dominated them where it counts – morally!

As it happens, the modern world gives us plenty of opportunity to get a kick out of moral outrage. So much so that some people may have become clinically addicted to the thrill. Much like smoking cigarettes or snorting cocaine, working oneself into a towering moral fury has a near-immediately gratifying payoff and is therefore more likely to become habitual.

Signs of addiction can be seen in the compulsive bleating of “Racist!” whenever someone criticises a group of people that contains some black or brown individuals. Here, the person getting a buzz off moral outrage doesn’t bother to wait to make sure that the person they’re attacking really is a racist, because that might mean that they don’t get to accuse anyone and so don’t get the buzz.

Other signs include getting outraged at things that are entirely natural, such as the gender pay gap. Taking something that’s clearly the result of female choice and spinning it to make out like there’s a massive anti-female conspiracy to drive down wages is the kind of thing that could get someone a diagnosis of paranoia in other contexts, but when politics are involved no pile of bullshit is too high.

In truth, moral outrage is a form of bullying. It’s a way of running another person down because of their perceived lack of virtue, and this moral shaming is little different to shaming someone for being fat, poor or slovenly. The main distinction is that it is more passive-aggressive than physical bullying.

The driving force behind moral outrage is a combination of slave morality and mob mentality. The slave morality is always a feature because people susceptible to moral outrage have inevitably been told what their morals are, and usually told early enough in life that, by adulthood, they’re convinced their behaviour is natural. The mob mentality, likewise, is always a feature because people need to whip each other up into a frenzy to generate the self-righteousness necessary for a truly gratifying state of moral outrage.

The question then arises: should crude expressions of moral outrage be banned, or at least socially discouraged? It’s possible to combat them by making the virtue signaller look bad themselves.

For instance, virtue signallers shrieking “Racist!” when they hear criticism of Islam could be discouraged by being told how stupid they are for not being able to see the difference between dislike of a religion and dislike of a race. After all, the two concepts are radically different – the first is a meme complex, the second is a gene complex. It could fairly be pointed out that someone unable to tell the difference is pretty thick.

Even better, when someone is aggressively expressing their moral outrage at you, is to ask that person if they think they’re better than you on account of their beliefs. Of course they think they are, which is why they’re outraged in the first place – but if they admit that, they immediately lose their moral high ground on account of confessing to egotism.

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21st Century Christianity and Its Manifestations

Opinions on how to treat homosexuals wax and wane with social fashion, but masochism is an eternal element of Christianity

Christianity hasn’t died yet, and it never will, for there will always be a niche for slave morality anywhere there is interpersonal conflict. Fittingly for the receptive, yielding principle that it represents, Christianity has morphed into a near-infinite variety of different doctrines depending on the time and place in which it was trying to be relevant. This essay examines the characteristics of 21st century Christianity.

The sort of person who finds themselves attracted to a slave morality such as Christianity remains the same as ever, much like human nature itself. Their essential characteristic is resentment, and their essential motivation is the destruction of that which inspires envy in them. They are like pathological horizontalists, who want to level every dominance hierarchy out of resentment for not being able to climb them.

The Christianity of our century has found an equivalent for all of its ancient tenets and dogmas. For instance, in this new manifestation of Christianity, America are the Romans. Representing the men of iron, America has a vast military empire that brings humiliation and subjugation to its rivals. Anything that happens in the world, no matter where and no matter who to, can be blamed on American influence.

An Islamic suicide bomber who walks into a mosque in Pakistan and kills a hundred other Muslims has nothing to do with America. But neo-Christians will say that it’s still America’s fault because they “destablised” the country somehow, or because America gave money to some unsavoury politician somewhere alsong the line, or because the CIA financed the bomber, or equipped the bomber etc.

The neo-Christians rarely know anything about the Sunni-Shia divide and how murderous it has become. They don’t appreciate that a Muslim has a hundred times more to fear from a fellow Muslim than he does from the average American. It doesn’t matter to them. All Muslims are low status, and therefore they are elevated above the wealthy, c.f. “The first shall be last and the last shall be first.”

Similarly, the Original Sin is no longer sexual desire, because that has been fully monetised by now. The Original Sin is now racism, with racism being defined as solidarity with white people. All (white) people are guilty (of racism), and all have fallen short of the glory of (the colour-blind) God. We have all had thoughts about how we liked white people better, therefore we are all guilty of Original Sin, and are thereby associated with the Great Adversary of 21st century Christianity: Adolf Hitler.

The only solution for this Original Sin is self-flagellation. However, because corporal punishment isn’t fashionable in the Soy Era, this self-flagellation has to take a metaphysical form, and so the 21st century Christian gets their masochistic thrills from disparaging their own family, nation, race, class etc.

It has to be emphasised that Christianity doesn’t care for material concerns, and it never has. Inherent to Christian dogma is the meme that the cult comes above all other considerations, such as family, nation or class. So it’s natural for the 21st century Christian to say things like “White people have a uniquely brutal history of imperalism and racism.”

It’s therefore no accident that Christian churches are often behind the political impetus to allow hordes of Muslim and African refugees – who will never integrate – into the West. For thing, the Muslims also worship the God of Abraham, so they’re fundamentally on the same side as the Christians anyway, but more importantly, their arrival degrades the strength of the national bonds that people have with each other.

These national bonds are competing paradigms of solidarity to neo-Christianity and therefore have to be attacked so that it can take a central role in everyone’s life. Like its Abrahamic brothers in Islam and Judaism, Christianity is a totalitarian ideology, and it seeks to control every last aspect of the people under its thrall. This is why Jesus is quoted as saying in Matthew 10:34 that “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”

All other culture must be bulldozed out of the way to make sufficient space for Abrahamic universalism. This belief is as common among the 21st century Christian as is was of the Taliban who erased Afghanistan’s history of Buddhism, or of the Jews who rewrite Western history to glorify themselves and to hide their own crimes. All other bonds of friendship or brotherhood must be smashed, so that the God of Abraham stands unchallenged above the world.

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How to Tell If A Political Ideology Has Failed

The genesis of the Soviet failure was the failure of their philosophers to accurately understand, and to account for, human nature

All political philosophies, when first expounded, claim to have a special and unique insight into the truth of human nature. This claim is the basis for the legitimacy of each one. However, this also gives us a limit point at which a political ideology can be said to have failed – when those expounding it will be trying to change human nature instead of change their philosophy.

Machiavelli was correct – human nature never changes. It is the one constant through which the rest of the world can be understood. Human nature is the same in all times and places and therefore anyone who understands it might as well be able to see into the future. This gives immense power to those who do understand human nature. They are able to flow with the waves of it, instead of being dashed upon the rocks.

Communism failed because it did not account for the masculinity within human nature. The assumption was that, after the structures of cruelty and capitalism were dismantled, we would all go back to a bonobo-style level of caring, sharing and free love. Everyone would have what they needed because those able to provide it would simply do so out of inherent kindness.

It did not account for the chimpanzee within us, the hypermasculinist who desires verticalisation. The fact is that resources are extremely limited in a state of Nature, which means that when times of scarcity roll around, some have to go without. There is an immense evolutionary incentive, for obvious reasons, for social creatures such as humans to evolve to fight like hell rather than go without, and so primates have evolved dominance hierarchies.

This means that a state of perfect solidarity, and full sharing totally free of resentment, is unnatural. Humans are a hierarchical creature in a state of Nature, and the attempt to reform humanity and the nature of humanity – as if it was a field that could simply be sown with a higher grade of crop – was the folly that killed a hundred million people last century.

Nazism failed for similar reasons. Their great error was to assume that the nature of the German people was more morally upright than what it really was, which created a cognitive dissonance that found resolution in the scapegoating of the Jews. Externalising the blame for personal failure is typical of the sort of person who finds merit in Nazism.

Neo-Communism, in its manifestation as social justice warrior culture, is failing because it failed to account for how unwilling young people are to be programmed into parroting utter bullshit, especially when that bullshit denies aspects of human nature that even children can observe. The neo-communist attempt to reform human nature into some kind of non-racist, non-sexist and non-judgmental perfect niceness is doomed to fail, as all people smarter than dogs can see the distinctions between the various types of humans everywhere they go.

Instead of accepting that the bonds of solidarity and philia that held society together have now been shattered by relentless waves of mass immigration and the ruthless application of neo-liberal ideology to every facet of life, the neo-communists try to brainwash everyone into denying their natural instincts by browbeating them into submission with terms like “Racist!”. This is clear evidence of failure.

Likewise, the neo-nazism of our age serves to misdirect blame rather than accept that its conception of human nature is inaccurate. The neo-nazis often have intelligent and accurate criticisms about how the current system has failed, and how the Marxists have failed, but their downfall lies (as with the Marxists) with their solutions.

The neo-nazi solution is still, as it was, to fundamentally change human nature by exterminating those who don’t fit in, the belief being that the remainder will become something like the perfect human. This was, and remains, a failed philosophy for the reason that human nature does not and will not change in response to human meddling.

Liberal democratic capitalism, for all of its flaws, tried to change human nature much less than either Nazism or Communism, and that’s why it defeated them both last century. The Anglo-American system accepted from the beginning that Nature will throw up a wide range of variance among her children, an acceptance made easier by the brilliant insights of Charles Darwin into the subject.

This meant that the Anglo-Americans, and those influenced by them, focused on building a system that would accommodate the widest variance of human behaviour. Their version of liberal democratic capitalism was able to account for both noble and debased natures, and find a place for both to contribute, meaning that it wasted much less energy on fighting itself and imposing order upon itself, relative to the competing philosophies.

The Anglo-American system deserves much criticism, particularly when it comes to how willing it is to sell its own people for small amounts of money, but it is less bad than anything hitherto attempted, on account of it making more accurate assumptions about human nature. This has minimised the desire of its political rulers to attempt to reshape human nature, which has minimised the risk of gulags and gas chambers.

Future political philosophies, when they arise, will not and must not be mere throwbacks to the 20th century way of doing things. The political philosophies of the 21st century will take into account an extra century’s worth of insights into the reality of human nature, and the reality of the Nature that spawned us, and they will be more accurate and more humane as a consequence.

The risk of the 21st century is that this new psychological knowledge inspires new attempts to remodel human nature under the delusion that “we know enough now to get it right this time.” The possibility of mass non-consensual medicating with psychiatric drugs cannot be discounted, and neither can some kind of virtual reality system created with the intent of brainwashing people more effectively than ever before.

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Lies Are Far More Toxic Than Drugs Ever Could Be

Illegal drugs are illegal, so we are told, because they harm the brain. Drugs such as cannabis are apparently toxic enough to cause brain damage in those who use them, rendering them mentally defective and often permanently so. One notable thing harms the brain more than cannabis though – lies.

The brain is an extremely plastic organ, and it has a number of defences against injury and poisoning, notably the blood-brain barrier which prevents poisons reaching the brain from the main blood supply (contrary to popular belief, smoking cannabis doesn’t cause psychoactive molecules to enter the brain directly through the lungs). It’s a terrible idea to mistreat your brain, but the fact is that the brain can deal with a lot.

The human mind is also extremely plastic, but, also like the brain, there are circumstances in which it is not. Under these circumstances, suffering can cause part of the mind to solidify so that it fixates on a certain belief or impression. This is very common in the case of trauma, because there is a clear biological imperative to learn quickly to avoid it.

A great example of this is how a religious upbringing often leads to people who hate religion with a passion. It is traumatic to be subjected to the heavily guilt and shame-based psychological manipulation that is a cornerstone of many religions (particularly the Abrahamic ones). Many women and homosexuals grow up hating themselves because of religious abuse, and if/when they realise as adults that this abuse was unnecessary, they come to hate the culture that abused them.

When people are told that, for example, male infant gential mutilation is a good thing, or that Johnny from down the street is going to hell forever because his family are the wrong denomination, they learn to hate and fear. When these people grow up and become adults, and realise that they now need Viagra because of lost penile sensitivity from the mutilation in infancy, the natural response is to hate the religious and anyone who claims to speak for the spiritual.

Perhaps the most disgusting, harmful and shameless set of lies are those stemming from the War on Drugs that the Government is conducting against us. These lies have been destructive in two major ways. Not only have they obscured the truth about the medicinal value of the cannabis plant, but they have also eroded public trust in institutions that society relies on to function.

For instance, many people who distrust and despise Police officers do so because they had a Police officer come to their school and lie to them about the alleged negative effects of cannabis use. It’s distressing to have an authority figure and representative of the state come and lie to you in order to justify their War on Drugs, and doubly so when you have family members who benefit from the medicinal use of cannabis, as many people do.

Many people have similar feelings towards, psychiatrists, who have also been willing tools in the Government’s war against drug-using members of its own population (i.e. us). It’s an awful feeling to be told, by a supposed mental health authority, that cannabis only causes psychosis and brain damage, while also being aware of the reality that medicinal cannabis is helpful for a range of psychiatric conditions – a reality that is becoming ever more apparent as research progresses.

It’s hard to overstate the amount of psychological damage that such actions cause. Many of the students who see a Police officer lying to them about cannabis – like the patients who hear a doctor lying about cannabis – come to lose trust in all authority figures. This makes it harder for the Police to find witnesses to crimes, because any witness who also happens to be a cannabis user will not want to volunteer their contact details, and it makes it harder for psychiatrists to convince patients to take medicines that do benefit them, because the patients suspect that the doctor is lying.

Much of the antagonism that Police officers face on a daily basis is a consequence of the lies that their authority upholds by virtue of upholding the drug laws. In the Netherlands, where these lies are not told (at least, not about cannabis), relations between the Police and their communities are much warmer. Dutch people don’t have to worry about the insult of getting arrested from using or cultivating a medicinal plant, and so they have little reason to see Police officers as enemies.

Another extremely damaging set of lies relates to the “Wir schaffen es!” mentality of Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats with regard to the hundreds of thousands of allegedly Syrian refugees that have poured into Germany in recent years. We were told they would integrate, work, learn the language, pay taxes, abide local laws, but these promises turned out to be lies also.

They should have told us the truth about all of these things. Lies generalise, so that when a person suffers trauma from believing one they learn to distrust not only the person who told the lie, but also any other people who belong to groups that the liar also belonged to. And so, one doctor lying about cannabis one day leads to a parent refusing that doctor’s advice to vaccinate their children on another day.

The real danger for the West is that authority figures have told so many lies now, and for so long, that no Westerner has cause to trust any authority at all any more. If the masses decide that religious, political, academic, scientific and business authorities are all just liars, they will be primed for the coming of a demagogue and the catastrophes that demagogues bring with them.

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If you enjoyed reading this essay, you can get a compilation of the Best VJMP Essays and Articles of 2017 from Amazon for Kindle or Amazon for CreateSpace (for international readers), or TradeMe (for Kiwis).

Truthophobia

A new mental illness has been observed in the modern world. It’s found among people who have irrational, fear-based responses to hearing true statements. Instead of responding to these statements like rational adults, and acknowledging their truth value, they tend to have abusive outbursts: they have truthophobia.

We can define truthophobia along the lines of other phobias, which are defined as: “exaggerated usually inexplicable and illogical fears of a particular object, class of objects, or situation”. In short, truthophobia is an exaggerated, inexplicable and illogical fear of statements of truth.

It may have a second meaning, along the lines of homophobia and Islamophobia, which is to say a political meaning alongside its linguistic meaning. In this sense, truthophobia refers to the act of denying the truth specifically because that truth is politically inconvenient.

Characteristic of a truthophobe are theatrical displays of moral outrage intended to distract from good points made by truth-tellers. For example, they like to scream “Racist!” when statistics about the sexual assault rates of Muslim and African immigrants to Europe are brought up. They also like to scream “Racist!” whenever criticisms of Islam are made, even when those criticisms have nothing to do with any racial distinctions.

What’s telling here is that truthophobes don’t ask questions about these true statements in an effort to understand them, like an honest person would do. The truthophobe simply reacts, on the basis that the truth might harm a belief that they hold, and that this belief needs to be defended by any means necessary. They are dishonest as well as cowardly.

Any learned Buddhist could quickly determine what was wrong with the average truthophobe. Clinging to material phenomena causes suffering, and clinging to a particular interpretation of reality so tightly that expressions of any alternative interpretation are taken as threats is a fitting example of such. The more truthophobic a person, the harder they dig in; the harder they dig in, the more suffering they cause themselves and others.

Why do people become truthophobics? We can group them into three major groups.

The first are the simply dumb. Being dumb is not enough by itself to be a truthophobe, but it can be a major contributing factor, especially if the dumb person has already been brainwashed into believing something untrue. Dumb people mostly are truthophobic because of the cognitive dissonance arising from really thinking about things properly. Consequently they prefer comfortable lies to truths.

This first group are arguably the least malicious of the three, because they are the most likely to admit the truth once it is evident. Being dumb doesn’t necessarily preclude one from being honest, and dumb people are often capable of seeing the truth if they are given the time and space in which to do so. The other two groups lack the shame to admit the truth no matter how evident it is, but this first group will often change their mind if the truth is presented to them correctly.

The second group of truthophobes are the fanatics. This group believes fervently in a particular doctrine, usually political, and so much so that any statement contradicting it is aggressively attacked regardless of any truth value that statement may possess. This group is worse than the first, because not only do they refuse to accept the truth when it’s presented to them, but they actively talk a lot of shit and thereby obscure the truth from those honestly seeking it.

Fanatics are also dumb, because their fanaticism invariably creates more suffering than their ideology would prevent, even under the best possible circumstances. Fanatics degrade the quality of public discourse by being unreasonable and dishonest, which makes the truth harder to see. In this group can be found a large number of Marxists as well as the religious fanatics that they resemble.

The third group are evil. The unfortunate truth is that a particularly malicious strain of truthophobes exist – one who tell lies and deny the truth specifically because to do so brings suffering into the world. Many in this category spread confusion and fear because they directly profit from it. Invariably they don’t simply reject the truth but actively seek to destroy the reputations of anyone speaking it, so as to discourage them from trying to speak the truth again.

People in this third group are mostly afraid of the truth about themselves, because it’s this fundamental fear that motivates their evil. Their ultimate fear is that they are truthfully not worth very much themselves, and the key to defeating these people is to never let them suspect otherwise.

Anyone trying to speak the truth in today’s environment will certainly encounter all three of these types in short order.

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If you enjoyed reading this essay, you can get a compilation of the Best VJMP Essays and Articles of 2017 from Amazon for Kindle or Amazon for CreateSpace (for international readers), or TradeMe (for Kiwis).

The Real White Privilege Is Not Being White – It’s Being Around White People

If you live around white people, you’re generally in good hands

Some say that it’s a privilege to be intelligent, but genetic studies have shown that it’s actually of more benefit to be around intelligent people than to be intelligent oneself. In a social species such as homo sapiens, the real privilege is to reside in an environment that has intelligent people in it, thereby reaping most of the benefits of intelligence for none of the costs. This essay will argue that a similar scenario exists in the case of being white.

Being intelligent has clear benefits. It’s easier to see patterns that lead to dangers, it’s easier to remember dangerous things that happened in the past, it’s easier to come up with new and creative ideas. These abilities have a massive benefit to the survival prospects of those few who possessed them, creating immense selective pressure in favour of more intelligence.

However, being intelligent also has less obvious drawbacks. It’s much easier to get depression or anxiety if you’re hyperaware of all the dangers out there. It’s also much harder to get over trauma if you have a good memory, which the vast majority of intelligent people have. Many intelligent people are also more sensitive, which makes them more prone to psychological trauma.

So the real benefit to individual intelligence is gleaned by the friends and family of that individual more than by that individual themselves. This is the real privilege of intelligence, and it’s the same with being white. White privilege doesn’t come from being white. It comes from being around white people.

The wealthiest countries are wealthy not because they have high IQs or the right skin colour, but because they are not corrupt. Corruption – not intelligence or skin colour – correlates the most highly with national wealth because in a corrupt environment, intelligence and hard work are not rewarded.

The correlation between wealth and white people can be explained by that white people are less likely to be corrupt. This can be proven by noting that where white people are corrupt (i.e. Russia) they tend to be poor, and where non-white people are not corrupt (i.e. Japan and South Korea) they tend to be wealthy.

An understanding of reciprocal altruism reveals the brutal truth behind all these figures. The reason why white people have it good is because people trust them to reciprocate mutually beneficial acts of social benefit, and one of the results of a high level of mutual trust is wealth. The easiest way to understand all this is to think in terms of investments.

When a person has to decide quickly whether or not to trust a person they don’t know, they will make their judgment based on any recognisable cue. Skin colour (alongside skin health, clothing quality, posture, general grooming, tone of voice, display of status symbols) is one of those cues that tells you what’s likely to happen to your investment.

The point of weighing up these cues is to answer these questions: If you treat a person kindly, will they treat you kindly in exchange? Or will they use your kindness as an excuse to get into a position to exploit you? Because if having white skin correlates with a propensity towards reciprocal altruism, then living around white people is likely to make a person both wealthier and more trusting regardless of their own skin colour.

We could talk about Asian privilege in the same way – after all, it’s fundamentally a matter of investment. Some would argue that investing social capital in an Asian is unwise because it’s less likely to be reciprocated, but most would disagree. The fact is, history shows that when a large number of Asians move into an area the local standard of living either increases or stays the same.

Indeed, we can see that wealthy Asian countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan also rank among the least corrupt, while corrupt Asian countries like China are poor despite their high IQs. All of this is because acts of reciprocated kindness increase trust, which increases wealth. It’s a privilege to be trusted, true, but it’s also a privilege to live around trustworthy people – and it’s the trustworthiness that leads to being trusted, which leads to wealth, not the other way around.

Ultimately, the reason why white people are frequently favoured for certain roles and positions is because the people putting them there have good reason to expect that their largesse will be reciprocated. White privilege, then, can be boiled down to the fact that people have learned to trust individual white people more than individuals of other races on account of historically getting rewarded more for doing so.

This is certainly unfair to two groups of people: low-value whites who get a free ride on the erroneous assumption that they are high-value, and high-value non-whites who get offered worse deals on the erroneous assumption that they are low-value. The best way to combat this unfairness is not by shrieking about how racist and evil white people are, but firstly by rewarding other people’s trust and secondly by learning to make more sophisticated and accurate appraisals of other people’s trustworthiness.

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If you enjoyed reading this essay, you can get a compilation of the Best VJMP Essays and Articles of 2017 from Amazon for Kindle or Amazon for CreateSpace (for international readers), or TradeMe (for Kiwis).