Can You Hear The Echoes Of The 1920s On Our Streets?

The 1920s were a tumultuous time in the Western World. Rebuilding from the carnage of World War One, Westerners – especially Europeans – found themselves unable to decide on a peaceful way forward, and this absence of agreement expressed itself violently in the streets. This essay examines whether or not we’re looking at a repeat.

The German defeat in World War One saw a revolution that swept away the monarchy of Wilhelm II, replacing it with a fragile democracy known as the Weimar Republic. The well-founded fear of those who wanted peace in Central Europe was of a civil war between the socialist forces that had inspired the revolution and the reactionary conservatives representing those who held power and wealth under the Second Reich.

Communist agitation, inspired by the Russian Revolution of 1917, was eventually put down by an alliance between the ruling Social Democratic Party of Germany and right-wing paramilitaries known as the Freikorps, and peace finally reigned.

But it wasn’t to last.

The severe economic problems of the 1920s, coupled with a sense of humiliation at the restrictions imposed on Germany by the victorious Allies, alongside continued communist agitation and growing nationalist sentiment, meant that chaos would soon usurp the shaky peace.

The far left didn’t like the Weimar Republic because they considered it to be holding back a communist revolution, and the far right didn’t like it because they preferred the authoritarianism that existed under the previous monarchy.

This state of affairs is very similar to what faces the West today.

Just like 1920s Weimar, the streets are again filling with far-left and far-right extremists who want to fight each other

Communist agitators have made a significant impact on Western society in recent years. They have successfully destroyed belief in tradition, resulting in plummeting birthrates, mass immigration that has changed the make-up of Western nations forever, and widespread and righteous anti-white racism.

Nationalist agitators have also made significant strides recently, most notably with the election of Donald Trump to the American Presidency. Many Trump supporters are shameless authoritarians, and much of the appeal of this authoritarianism lies in the belief that they are protecting the West from degeneracy.

The surge in both groups of extremists has led to increasing levels of street violence in America, most notably at the ‘Battle of Berkeley’ and then last weekend in Charlottesville. A sense of unfinished business lingers over both of these incidents, and after a fatal terrorist attack in Charlottesville the desire for revenge is a factor predicting further bloodshed.

What is the most foreboding is that Antifa is growing in strength because of rhetoric about the need to resist Nazism, and the far-right is growing in strength because of rhetoric about the need to resist Communism.

The echoes of the 1920s come from the fact that both sides are correct in their basic fears of the other side. Both sides are growing in strength because of sharply increasing dissatisfaction with the idea of liberal democracy, in a very similar way to how increasing dissatisfaction with the Weimar Republic led to widespread street violence.

The left opposes liberal democracy because it wants to shut down free speech and free expression. The Communists believe that they need to control the narrative in order to bring about revolution, and this demands that even scientists like Richard Dawkins be denied the right to speak at a university.

The right opposes liberal democracy because it wants to shut down the free movement of people. The Nazis believe that the West is sinking into chaos, anarchy and degeneracy, and only by rallying around authoritarian figures can a sufficient degree of order be imposed upon society.

Both of these sides, therefore, have grounds to eschew dialogue and democracy in favour of raw assertions of power in the streets.

Also foreboding is the belief, shared by many commentators, that the economic hardships of the Weimar Era laid the foundations for massive German discontent with the idea of democracy, which paved the way for extremists like Adolf Hitler.

The West has not really recovered from the Global Financial Crisis of 2008. Employment prospects are poor all across the West, with the dream of owing your own home now out of reach for most young Westerners, and working-class resentment at the amount of money spent on refugees risks growing into further discontent.

Perhaps all of this is building towards another climactic struggle.

The Great Fractal

In the beginning was consciousness. This is the same as God, and it is the same as yourself. God is consciousness, and God is you, and you are consciousness. This didn’t really happen in the beginning, because there’s no such thing as time, but it’s the start of the story.

All religions and spiritual movements are inspired by gnosis about the real nature of God. It’s very simple – God is consciousness because consciousness is sufficient to create the entire physical world (and all possible worlds), and consciousness is outside of time and space and is complete even in division.

Nothing over and above consciousness is necessary to create the appearance of the entire material world and everything in it, and the appearance of every possible material world and everything in that. In fact, all of these possible material worlds can be derived through repeated iteration of a simple fractal equation – the Great Fractal.

So when people say that God is omniscient and omnipotent and everywhere and eternal they are entirely correct, because all of these things are true of consciousness.

The only disagreement arises when people try to describe the precise nature of God. These efforts are doomed to failure because consciousness is more fundamental than language, and therefore cannot be defined in language. And so all efforts to describe God or to interpret the will of God are errors, usually made through a person conflating their ego with God and therefore confusing their personal desires for the will of God.

That’s all there is to life. You, being conscious, are conscious of things. This never changes, not even on the other side of the death of your material body.

The Great Fractal is the sum total of all of the possible phenomena that God can be conscious of. It is called the Great Fractal because all possible lives are similar to all other possible lives in ways that, if represented graphically, form a fractal of infinite complexity and depth.

Every possible life is being lived by God, right now, with full consciousness – and always has been and always will be. There is a being exactly the same as you who is right now living the life you lived up until ten minutes ago – and there are an infinite number of lives being lived inbetween now and ten minutes ago.

The Great Fractal is alive. It is bursting with consciousness. Every possible life that God can imagine – from the simplest flatworm to seventh-dimensional wizards, is consciously being lived right now, and always will be, forever.

How? God just dreamed them up, and God continues to dream as an act of will. That’s all that this – what we call life – is: just a dream. You know this because it’s not any more real than the dreamworlds that you experience at night. Nothing is different at such a time – you are consciousness, and you are conscious of phenomena, and that’s all there is to it, awake or asleep.

What you consider to be your life is just one infinitely small and infinitely limited perspective of the Great Fractal, at the human-on-Earth-in-the-21st-century level. Just like a computer program that can give you the impression of an entire journey merely through zooming in on particular co-ordinates of a fractal, so is your life just a pathway through the Great Fractal and what you see along the way.

You do have free will, only you are limited by certain laws whose purpose is to make this illusion more immersive. What you consider to be free will is nothing more than navigating through the Great Fractal to the degree that you are able – you decide on a part of the Great Fractal that you would like to experience and then – if it’s possible to get there from where you are now while obeying the laws of immersion – you go there.

Why did this happen, instead of something else happening?

Being pure consciousness, God is perfection. God resides in a state of perfect bliss, complete and without desire.

Although this is perfect on one level, it’s grossly imperfect on another: it’s not very interesting.

Simply put, the most enjoyable game that God can play is to look into a limited section of the Great Fractal for long enough so that God can actually come to convince itself that this limited section is really the whole thing – and then God can feel a sense of awe and grandeur by once again awakening to an appreciation of the whole, an appreciation of itself, an awakening from the delusion that God was ever something else.

And then to do it again, and again and again, forever – an unceasing pattern of forgetting and remembering, of mistaking the illusion of the material world for transcendental reality and then realising the trick and laughing about the fact that one could ever fall for something so obvious.

What we call enlightenment is what naturally arrives as a consequence of turning the common, understandable, materialist perspective around; from looking backwards at the uncreated consciousness instead of looking forwards into the created Great Fractal.

The Great Fractal is the sum total of all the contents of consciousness and all the possible contents of consciousness. It is what the ancient Vedic culture called Maya. We mistake it for reality to the extent that we are making a game of this life.

Why Anarcho-Homicidalism Is Not Terrorism

The obvious reaction of someone trapped in a slave mindset, when told that they have the right to kill anyone who is trying to enslave them, is to protest that such a thing must be “terrorism” or some other crime against good order. Learning to think like a free person means learning when your rights have to be defended, and an anarcho-homicidalist has taken steps to ensure that his actions are legitimate resistance and not terrorism.

They might overlap in a lot of ways, because both use violence to bring about a vision of correct order in the world, but anarcho-homicidalism is very distinct from terrorism.

The primary difference is that anarcho-homicidalism, being a branch of anarchy, does not tolerate either hierarchy or forced collectivism. This means that, not only is the anarcho-homicidalist forbidden from killing on command, but he is also forbidden from justifying an act of anarcho-homicidalism on the grounds that his target merely shared a demographic category with someone trying to enslave him.

Both of these qualities are distinct from terrorism. Although there are terrorists who act on their own initiative, the majority of terrorist deeds are carried out by individuals who have been coerced, intimidated or tricked into action.

Also, a clear majority of terrorist actions are carried out to further one side in some “us vs. them” narrative. The Muslims who kill themselves in suicide bombings are able to motivate themselves to take action by rationalising that the collective benefit to Islam of killing many of Islam’s enemies outweighs the individual loss of life.

The anarcho-homicidalist is different from these in that he must arrive at the decision to kill out of his own philosophical reasoning, and that his efforts must be targeted upwards at an authority figure, not sideways at the lackeys of one.

The secondary difference is that anarcho-homicidalism leads to less violence – in contrast to terrorism, which leads to more violence.

In fact, a crucial element of anarcho-homicidalism is that the action ought to decrease the amount of suffering in the world. Therefore, it is legitimate to kill a politician whose actions are causing suffering, but not to start a blood feud between one group and another group that the politician just happens to belong to.

The usual example given when arguing for the merits of anarcho-homicidalism is that of conscription. It’s trivially easy to see how widespread anarcho-homicidalism would make raising slave armies impossible, because an anarcho-homicidalist would simply shoot any conscription officer that came to their house.

A terrorist, by contrast, is unlikely to shoot a conscription officer. This is because nothing about terrorism explicitly goes against the idea of hierarchy. A terrorist is more likely to bend the knee and take orders from a conscription officer, in the hope that they will get the chance to kill the enemies of whatever collective the terrorist considers themselves part of.

Another stark difference is that a terrorist is usually happy to create collateral damage. Bombing a civilian airliner is a common terrorist act, for the reason that it makes people afraid to get into planes, and because the targeted country tends to waste enormous resources on security in the aftermath.

All of these terrorist actions have the effect of causing more violence to happen, because they will either provoke the authorities into crackdowns or provoke the groups whose members were killed to violently retaliate.

An anarcho-homicidalist, by contrast, will not cross the boundary into terrorism. His action is surgical, clinical, unpredictable, unstoppable. The only terror created by the anarcho-homicidalist is in the hearts of those who would rule, and the effectiveness of his action is not determined by the destruction of an enemy but by whether it persuades the ruling authorities to treat their subjects correctly.

Social Justice Warrior Culture Is The Totalitarianism of Our Age

Every age has its evil. The last century gave us Nazism and Communism, the century before that gave us colonial genocides, the centuries before that gave us horrific religious persecutions and mass murders. This essay looks at the totalitarianism of the early 21st century: SJW culture.

Totalitarianism is defined by a striving to regulate every aspect of both public and private life wherever possible. It’s the antithesis of freedom. Benito Mussolini, one of history’s most infamous totalitarians, declared that even the spiritual life of the citizenry is to be controlled to the finest detail.

According to Hannah Arendt, the appeal of totalitarianism lies in its ideology, which, like religions, provide “a comforting, single answer to the mysteries of the past, present, and future.”

Theocracies achieve this with an ideology about the nature of God and the inevitable triumph of the followers of that God. Nazism achieved this with an ideology about race struggle and the inevitable triumph of the Aryan race, and Communism achieved this with an ideology about class struggle and the inevitable triumph of the proletariat.

The essential point that distinguishes these ideologies from free thought is that an ideology offers an easy, pre-packaged answer to any question that might arise. Because of this it is never necessary to actually think about anything, much less discuss anything with another person – all answers derive directly from reference to the ideology.

Much like a religious scripture does for a religious fanatic, an ideology forms the basis of reality for political fanatics. If a person has a powerful desire to remake the world in their image for political reasons, there will be an ideology at the bottom of it.

Social Justice Warrior culture is a form of Communism, in that it is explicitly horizontalist. Like all other horizontalist ideologies, anyone who distinguishes themselves, for any reason, is assumed to have done so by immoral means. The logic behind this lies in the ideological assumption that all are equal.

Because the belief in the equality of all people is fundamental to SJW culture, a natural corollary is that anyone who has achieved an outcome that elevates them above the masses must have necessarily done so by immoral means.

And so, the higher standard of living in the West, when compared to the Middle East and Africa, cannot be explained outside of the template of colonial oppression. All Western wealth is considered stolen; a crime that needs to be redressed by horizontalist action.

There is no room in Social Justice Warrior culture for anyone to put effort into bettering themselves – everything that betters a person is considered to be the result of unfair privilege. As this column has previously pointed out, this ideology is what Nietzsche would have called a slave morality, in that it is fundamentally based in resentment and a desire to rip everyone down to the lowest level.

Where this ideology really goes wrong – and where it is in danger of becoming a totalitarianism akin to Nazism and Communism – is its utter failure to accept that certain mentalities and cultures create poverty among their victims of their own accord.

And so, the sorry state of the Middle East cannot be explained by the legendary unwillingness of Middle Easterners to live in peace, and neither can it be explained by the extremely high rates of religious fundamentalism, nor the appalling human rights record of their rulers, nor the cultural indifference to education and free thought, nor the widespread practice of infant genital mutilation.

It’s all the fault of colonialism, or America bombing them.

Likewise, the near-infinite hatred that some disadvantaged groups have for other disadvantaged groups is all blamed on influence from the West. The utter contempt that Muslims have for homosexuals cannot be blamed on Muslims themselves, because to do so would be to imply that a disadvantaged group can be less moral than an advantaged one – and this is in direct opposition to SJW ideology.

All of this would be just another half-arsed theory were it not for the demonstrated ability and willingness of this ideology to destroy the lives of anyone who opposes it. The most striking recent example was the sacking of a Google employee for questioning the social engineering practices of his company. James Demore wrote a manifesto that made the assumption that biology trumps SJW ideology, and this was decreed to be wrongthink punishable by the destruction of his career.

Believing that biology is real is a thoughtcrime when it is considered to advance “harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace” – in other words, biology is what we tell you it is, and any disagreement is grounds for retaliation.

The firing of one engineer is not comparable to the historical crimes of 20th century totalitarian states, true, but this example shows how far SJWs will go to deny reality where it conflicts with their ideology, and this bodes poorly for a peaceful 21st century.

The simmering powderkeg is the tens of millions of Muslims who now live in the West, and who can never integrate. The mass resettlement of Muslims into the West was never carried out with the consent of Westerners, and it was never carried out with reference to any study that demonstrated improved social or economic outcomes for Westerners.

This social engineering was, and continues to be, forced on Westerners by people who have adopted SJW ideology. If it leads to a civil war in Europe, then this ideology will be justifiably ranked alongside Nazism and Communism as one of humanity’s greatest mistakes.

VJMP Reads: Anders Breivik’s Manifesto IV

This reading carries on from here.

Much of this section (pages c. 200-286) relates to further elucidation of the nature of the relations between Muslims and Christians. Here Breivik takes care to ensure that the Christians are always cast as the victims. When recounting the Muslim conquest of Lebanon, he draws special attention to the fact that the percentage of Christians there has declined from roughly 79% to 25% in the last century.

One point that is hard to refute is that Islam conquered immense swathes of territory in the century after the death of Muhammad. Breivik points out the unlikelihood of a fundamentally peaceful religion spreading so rapidly and so violently so quickly – indeed, such a rapid, aggressive expansion can only be explained by the religion being fundamentally violent.

This perhaps has led to the world-view expressed in the early part of the document as being one of noble resistance against the plundering Islamic hordes. It also explains why much of this document painstakingly recounts the specifics of the conflicts.

This world-view has led to some far-reaching conclusions, such as that a reluctance on the part of European leaders to protect Christian communities in the Middle East is the equivalent of high treason. This might make some sense if a person considers themselves part of the Christian yang locked into an eternal struggle with the Islamic yin, where all Christians are part of the same “team”.

Most of Breivik’s rhetoric appears designed specifically to appeal to Christians: the “us and them” nature of relations between Christendom and the Islamic world is emphasised. There doesn’t seem to be much room for people who aren’t particularly enthusiastic about Christianity – if these people are Westerners, they have let Team Christian down by refusing to join them in their eternal struggle against Islam.

That concludes this section of Breivik’s manifesto. The next section looks at the problems currently besieging Europe.

People Like To Watch What Others Are Naturally Good At

Vladimir Klitschko and Anthony Joshua are both close to 2m tall and 110kg heavy – and it follows naturally that more people want to watch them fight than have sex

Why does the world’s most popular female porn star get paid orders of magnitude more than the world’s most popular male one? And why does the world’s most popular male athlete get paid orders of magnitude more than the world’s most popular female one? The current fashion is to attribute all manner of prejudice behind these two facts, but the reality is that it’s just a reflection of nature.

A bird looks awesome swooping through the air, but there’s nothing graceful about a waddling duck. A shark looks awesome sliding through the water, but on the floor of a boat a fish looks ridiculous. A cat looks awesome stalking some prey, but looks much less so when licking its own arse, as cats do.

There is a reason behind all of this. We humans appear to derive some aesthetic pleasure from observing parts of nature doing what they have developed to be the best at.

A bird is a creature of the air; naturally it looks best when in the air and not on the ground. A fish is a creature of the water; naturally it looks best when in the water and not on the ground.

Every creature looks the best in the environment that they have adapted the most to thrive in. This follows naturally from an appreciation of basic principles of biology.

And this is why the world’s highest paid porn star is, and always will be, a woman, and why the world’s highest paid sportsperson is, and always will be, a man: women are made to make love and men are made to make violence.

Both of those truths are highly unfashionable at the moment, because the zeitgeist is that all are equal in every single way. The trend at the moment is to insist on equality to the point of rejecting all evidence to the contrary (which even goes as far as some suggesting that the skill levels are equal in international men’s and women’s soccer, for example).

They are true nonetheless. Females were more than capable of reproducing asexually – the point of sexual reproduction is develop a subgroup within each species that is specially adapted to violence so that they can better protect those not adapted to it.

But because women are made to make love, the demand for watching them make love is (and always will be) much greater than it is for men. A woman is in her natural element when making love, and so looks better making love than fighting, and therefore people are much more willing to pay money for a chance to watch one do so.

And because men are made to make violence, the demand for watching them fight (and play sport, which is just ritualised violence) is and always will be much greater than it is for women. A man is in his natural element when fighting, etc.

Women’s sport can only catch on to the extent that it is a contest of skill, because that is essentially a contest of brainpower and men and women are not different there. So a sport such as cricket has a much greater chance of becoming a mainstream phenomenon than one such as soccer or rugby, much less boxing or MMA.

Even so it will never be as popular as the men’s version, because the demand (among both men and women) to watch men compete at sport will always be much greater. This will be true as long as men are better at fighting than women.

If Materialism Is False, Death Is Nothing To Fear

Materialism is such a dominant perspective in today’s culture that we’ve almost forgotten that it is a perspective. The near-universal assumption is that consensual reality is a mindless collection of atoms and molecules, and of temperature and energy, and that the brain generates consciousness. This essay is a reminder that this perspective is just a perspective, and not necessarily the truth.

Thinking logically, it soon becomes apparent that there’s nothing especially rational about adopting the perspective of materialism, although doing so may be temporarily useful for anyone trying to run a scientific experiment.

From an existential perspective, the only thing you know for sure is that you’re conscious. That’s it. Existence precedes essence – this is another way of saying that consciousness precedes the contents of consciousness.

At this point, most people will protest that they are also aware of the material world. This conclusion follows naturally from the assumption that the brain generates consciousness, because once a person has made this assumption it seems natural to think that the brain has developed to become aware of the material world.

But no-one knows for sure that what they are aware of is a material world. A person might be conscious of a perspective that relates to some mental attempt to make sense of the stimuli that they have received from what appears to be a material world, but this is in no way evidence that such a material world exists – the map is not the territory.

Some might argue here that the sensory impressions that impact upon our consciousness are, nonetheless, impressions from the material world, and that we know that our sensory organs have made accurate impressions of this material world because of our successful adaptation to it.

But the worlds that we encounter in our dreams, which can be as real and as detailed as this material world, are evidently not creating impressions on our eyes, because those are closed and we are asleep. From this we can deduce that eyes are not necessary to create an illusion of a material world realistic enough for a consciousness to want to survive in it.

And from this it follows that a material world is itself entirely unnecessary, because consciousness could simply dream one up in its absence and would be unable to tell the difference.

At this point a materialist might continue to object, claiming that although the dreamworld that the dreamer experiences is evidently non-material (despite being equally as real from an existential perspective), the appearance of it is nonetheless created by the brain, wherein it resides.

But at this point the materialist has allowed themselves to become a magical thinker. The belief that consciousness resides in the brain does not follow from any logical process.

Usually the materialist will continue to profess that science will one day prove what the “origin” of consciousness is, and that when it does so this origin will doubtlessly be material, but this line of reasoning is just the mirror opposite of what materialists deride as “the god of the gaps”.

In other words, it’s magical thinking, not rational thinking.

Talking to a materialist about the idea that consciousness itself has generated the contents of consciousness (i.e. it has dreamed up the material world as a particularly convincing delusion) is like talking to a medieval theologian about the idea that man has generated the idea of the Christian god – their basic existential assumptions about reality make a conversation about it essentially impossible.

If one refuses to make the assumption that the brain generates consciousness, then there is no reason to believe that the death of the physical body and brain should affect the experience of being conscious. Therefore, it follows that, if the existence of consciousness is not predicated on temporal phenomena, consciousness must be eternal.

And if consciousness is eternal, then all the contents of consciousness are just forms – things that come and go. And your body, being nothing more than some of the contents of your consciousness, is one of those things that comes and goes – but it isn’t you.

Therefore, there is no significant difference between the death of the physical body and any other major change in the contents of consciousness. The death of the physical body might portend a great change in the contents of consciousness, but there is no logical reason to think that this necessitates a change in consciousness itself.

How Cyberpunk Did The World Become?

It’s now 33 years since Neuromancer was published – establishing the cyberpunk timeframe as near-future – and that’s as long as either Alexander the Great or Jesus had in this world. It’s long enough for this essay to look back from the vantage point of 2017 and see how cyberpunk Planet Earth ended up becoming in this timeline.

Where Neuromancer and Snow Crash were half right was in their prediction of a matrix within cyberspace that filled the human need for societal interaction. FaceBook and the other giants of social media certainly led the ordinary citizens of meatspace to spend a lot more time in cyberspace, but we are still limited to the bulletin board model.

Advancements in virtual reality technology have been limited, to a large part, by the need for extreme amounts of processing power. A VR setup must be capable of generating a sufficient rate of frames per second to avoid latency from the perspective of the user, because this leads to simulator sickness, which decreases the level of telepresence.

So nothing really like the eponymous all-encompassing virtual environment in The Matrix, or the metaverse, has yet arisen.

Where all of the cyberpunk classics got it right was in the widespread adoption of novel classes of synthetic drugs.

Humans have always loved to experiment with consciousness – use of magic mushrooms, cannabis and alcohol all predate the use of writing. So it was fairly predictable that new advances in chemistry would lead to new frontiers in the exploration of mental space.

Although most of the chemical enhancement in cyberpunk literature has been for the purposes of increasing martial aptitude, as in Lucifer’s Dragon, most of its use in consensual reality has been psychonautic. In other words, here on Earth people mostly use the new waves of drugs to get high – but that doesn’t make for very good fiction.

Blade Runner didn’t foresee much different in the way of human drug consumption, but it did anticipate how close artificial intelligence came to passing the Turing Test. Many people chat with bots on social media without even knowing it – especially in online poker rooms and on large politics pages.

Certainly this film, based on Philip D Dick’s Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, accurately captured the uneasiness of being a human and dealing with something that appears entirely human but for subtle differences.

Where the classics tended to get it wrong was politically, especially the diminished role of territorial governments. There seemed to be a glib assumption, perhaps expressed in extremis in Snow Crash, that corporations and the influence of corporations would expand to the point where 20th century-style governments no longer held any power.

In reality, hard iron laws like “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun” continue to hold true, and any government capable of raising sufficient taxation to raise an army or secret police will still be a force on the world stage.

In the world of soft power, Transmetropolitan correctly predicted that the political landscape would be as shallow and insane as ever. The absurdity of the various political candidates in Spider Jerusalem’s life are an eerily accurate foretelling of the rise of the Donald Trump/Hillary Clinton circus.

Corporations have started implanting microchips in their employees, which has been a staple of cyberpunk horror for a long time. My own The Verity Key, however, predicted a different path of adoption for microchips under the skin: I figured that people, especially the technophilic, would adopt it themselves for increased access to private space.

It remains to be seen if this will happen – the expense involved in reaching a sustainable critical mass might make private adoption of RFID networks unworkable.

Things didn’t really get as dark and dystopic as cyberpunk predicted. This was always the probable outcome for a literary genre that consciously adopted elements of horror from other genres and from film noir. Things really just became weird. Perhaps the most accurate of all – predicting the current obsession with transgenderism – was Joe Haldeman’s The Forever War.

If there are new avenues of cyberpunk still to be explored, it’s possible that they will feature characters who are unrepentant rebels with regard to questions of cognitive freedom, in particular characters pushed underground by new technologies that make intrusion into the mind possible.

That’s one way in which the brilliant anime series Psycho-Pass blazes a new path: from the harder, engineering and physics based sciences towards the biological ones. Much like The Verity Key, the Psycho-Pass series raises the question of what life will look like when neuropsychological technology advances to the point where the private thoughts of every individual have become a public matter.

The controllers of the mindreading technology in Psycho-Pass are public entities (or at least government ones), which makes for an oppressive totalitarian atmosphere, as opposed to the nihilistic anarchy of The Verity Key. Probably this timeline became more nihilistic than totalitarian, but who knows what might still happen?

With news that remote-controlled drones and tank-like war machines running off AI might soon become cheap enough for terrorists or rogue states to use every day against enemy targets, the most cyberpunk elements of human history, fictional or otherwise, may be still to come.

*

Vince McLeod is the author of cyberpunk novel The Verity Key and of the upcoming cyberpunk novel The Man With A Thousand Fathers, to be serialised here starting from the summer of 2018.

VJMP Reads: Anders Breivik’s Manifesto III

This reading carries on from here.

In this section (pages c. 90-200), Breivik details the history of relations between the West and Islam. In his analysis here, there is nothing peaceful – Islam has been attempting to conquer the West since its inception, and would have succeeded already if not repelled at either Tours or Vienna, or other places.

The destruction of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War One, Breivik claims, is how the West has earned some breathing space against this relentless assault. The Caliphate was shattered after the Battle of Megido in 1917, and only because of this has Islam been unable to attack Europe in recent decades.

With sentences such as “the Islamic sources make clear that engaging in violence against non-Muslims is a central and indispensable principle to Islam,” and “Those cultures and individuals who do not submit to Islamic governance exist in an ipso facto state of rebellion with Allah and must be forcibly brought into submission,” a particular kind of Nordic bleakness shines through in this document.

It’s a kind of bleakness that has resigned itself to violence as a grim but inevitable outcome of the play of natural forces. They are attacking us is Breivik’s message. They always have been attacking us and they always will be.

Perhaps the following paragraph summarises this section of the document best:

The spectacular acts of Islamic terrorism in the late 20th and early 21st centuries are but the most recent manifestation of a global war of conquest that Islam has been waging since the days of the Prophet Muhammad in the 7th Century AD and that continues apace today. This is the simple, glaring truth that is staring the world today in the face — and which has stared it in the face numerous times in the past — but which it seems few today are willing to contemplate.

In this section Breivik continues to emphasise the point that no reformation of Islam is possible, for the reason that would-be reformers are unable to refer to any scriptural injunctions towards peace with non-believers. The example set by Muhammad himself was an example of war and of violence, so anyone with a will to reform is snookered from the beginning.

Essentially, anyone trying to move Islam away from violence has to work against the scriptures. Therefore, Islam cannot be used as a civilising force in the same way that Christianity could; no-one could discover through serendipity a message of peace and tolerance in their study of the Koran.

From reading this section there are two elements of Breivik’s reasoning that seem objectionable.

The first is that, although the list of historical atrocities by Muslims and modern apologies for these atrocities by Muslims is long, there are over a billion Muslims and Islam stretches back to the seventh century. As an inevitable consequence of existing for that long on a planet as violent as Earth, a cherry-picked list of bad things committed by or in the name of a group that large and old is going to be lengthy.

There’s no doubt, for example, that one could compile a hundred pages of grossly supremacist and chauvinistic admonitions to violence from a number of nationalities, including the Spanish, the French, the Germans, the British, the Russians, the Chinese, the Japanese, the Mongols, Huns, Persians and others, not to mention every other major Abrahamic sect.

Breivik may well have a point that most Westerners are not taught a deep general historical knowledge of Islam, but this only reveals a kind of autism on his part – after all, most people couldn’t care less about history full stop, let alone someone else’s.

The second obvious point of objection is that, although Breivik is correct in many ways when he criticises the unwillingness of Western historians, historical educators, or politicians to write or speak honestly about Islam, he doesn’t say much about an alternative.

If his contentions about the warlike nature of Muhammad and of Islam are accurate, and that they intend to subjugate the entire rest of the world, then there is a very good reason to not acknowledge this: doing so would be tantamount to an immediate declaration of war.

If Western leaders chose to go on television and say that the Prophet Muhammad was a pedophile and that the history of Islam was one of bloodshed, it would become a self-fulfilling prophecy in short order.

They appear to be gambling on the idea that, if left for long enough without provocation, Islam could reform itself. In this they stand in complete opposition to Breivik.

However, a wiser head might make the claim that if faced with an apocalyptic war today, just about any alternative is preferable, and therefore if there’s any doubt about the willingness of Islam to subjugate the world we should accommodate that doubt in our conversations with them.

New Zealand Should Only Let Female Refugees In

The hordes of refugees that Europe has let in have mostly been male, and the results have been catastrophic – let’s do the exact opposite

New Zealand, like much of the rest of the Western world, is stuck between a rock and a hard place on the refugee issue. On the one hand there are humanitarian concerns, on the other there is evidence that letting people from certain cultures into your own country drastically lowers your own quality of life. This essay explores a middle ground: only let female refugees in.

With regards to the humanitarian concerns, it can fairly be stated that one refugee life saved is equal to any other refugee life saved. Therefore, if New Zealand could take an extra 1,000 female refugees at the cost of taking 1,000 male refugees, it would not be a net loss on utilitarian grounds.

So this policy is neutral in terms of humanitarian impact. But with regards to lowering one’s own quality of life, it’s obvious that the refugees who do lower the life quality of their host societies are almost always men.

The European experience has demonstrated that to open the door to males from the sort of cultures that are currently producing the majority of refugees is to betray your own womenfolk.

It’s now common for European women to report feeling too afraid to go outside at night – an absolute disaster from the perspective of law and order, let alone the perspective of needing to protect your society’s most vulnerable.

Given that letting male refugees into your country has had the proven effect of inviting the sexual harassment and rape of your own women, why not simply refuse to let in male refugees full stop?

Female refugees don’t commit crimes at anywhere near the rate of males, and they almost never commit the violent sex crimes that often create life-long psychological trauma. So why not cut the supply of these criminals off at the source?

Doing so would also have the effect of greatly allaying the entirely reasonable fears that members of the host society have about mass resettlement of refugees in their neighbourhoods. Banning men would have the effect of banning virtually all crimes of sexual or physical violence, which ought to make the host population much more receptive to the humanitarian needs of the women who would be let in.

So if there are genuine humanitarian reasons that obligate the West opening its borders to the world’s rejects, it’s best to do so in a way that minimises the potential blowback from the host society. This means filtering out those among the refugees who cause most of the blowback.

After all, not much makes a person want to burn down a refugee shelter more than hearing news about another young girl molested by an adult male refugee.

From the perspective of the other side, nothing would incentivise the remaining men in fucked-up countries to unfuck themselves more powerfully than raising the spectre of a future without women.

They would be forced to choose between settling their petty squabbles and religious shitheadedness and finding a way for everyone to live in peace, or living in a world where sexual opportunities were limited to goats and camels.

Some critics might contend that such a policy will just make those places crack down on women’s rights harder and restrict their freedom of travel even more.

If that was the result, that would simply prove that the culture of these places was fundamentally opposed to women’s rights and to freedom in general, and thereby demonstrate the moral obligation that we have in the West to give women shelter from the men enforcing the values of that culture.

Perhaps the best aspect of this policy is that it appeals to the innate sense of justice that most people have. After all, it is the men of these places that are creating all the conflicts that are causing each other to flee, so why should women be punished for any of it?

Let the men sort it out in the absence of women, as they were forced to do in Lysistrata.