Sobriety Bias Syndrome

Sobriety Bias Syndrome is the tendency for people to erroneously assume that, if there are two competing perceptions of reality, the one that was arrived at while sober (or the most sober) must necessarily be the correct one. This line of thinking has retarded our cultures and had a grossly retrograde effect on our spiritual awareness.

The logic behind this is usually given thus: psychoactive drugs disturb the normal thinking processes of the brain, and these normal processes have evolved to make us optimally adapted to the environment around us, therefore without the influence of psychoactive drugs we will remain in the undisturbed and pure state best suited for accurately perceiving the material world.

This state is known as sobriety, and the term has become a synonym for clear-headed and rational thinking.

It is a very strange belief if one examines it, because it’s not clear what sobriety actually is. Our everyday experience of reality is formed by the interactions of several dozen neurotransmitters in our brains – and that’s even if we don’t smoke, snort, swallow, insufflate or shelve anything.

Even in a state that most people would consider to be fully sober, the conscious experience is strongly influenced by these neurotransmitters. Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, GABA, adrenaline, and dozens of others exist, and our mood at any time is mostly a function of the complex interactions between these.

So a sudden spike or trough in any of them can cause a profoundly different mood or attitude – an experience as strong as any “drug” trip.

Not even by meditating can one arrive at a state in which one is not influenced by these neurotransmitters. Meditation might help to inhibit the release of some of these natural drugs (especially noradrenaline), but in doing so it will merely facilitate the release of others (especially serotonin).

In other words, meditation advocates can legitimately be accused of being mere 5-hydroxytryptamine junkies.

Because one is always under the influence of these neurotransmitters, no-one has any way of knowing what sobriety even really is. The usual assumption is that the average, everyday or most common experience must be the natural one and therefore the state in which one does the most rational thinking.

But no person, even if they have definitely not taken any external drugs into their body, has any way of knowing whether their natural neurotransmitter levels are correct.

Many, many people have near-permanently elevated levels of noradrenaline and adrenaline as a consequence of all the stresses of living in a city, which is an extremely unnatural environment and which does not give people in it much opportunity to relax and to find homeostasis of anxiety levels.

It’s very plausible that these elevated levels of what are essentially endogenous war drugs have pushed us into a collective stupor in which we no longer can make decisions with an intelligent long-term perspective.

It’s easy to believe that we are so full of adrenaline that we can only make decisions with immediate rewards in mind, because this would explain the obesity, violence, callousness and stupidity that characterises our societies.

So we’re already not making sober decisions, and so changing the drug laws to reflect that exogenous drugs are not categorically worse for a person than endogenous ones will not necessary lead to the breakdown of social order.

In fact it could be argued that some exogenous drugs – and cannabis is the obvious example – actually serve to reduce the levels of some harmful or stupefying neurotransmitters and therefore cause the smoker to become more rational (this is why Rastafarians call their smoke-ups reasoning sessions).

Sure, we don’t need surgeons taking a hit on the crack pipe before they operate, but a change in attitudes to exogenous drugs need not lead to change in attitudes to professional workplace conduct.

The truth is that people arrive at all kinds of enhanced insights that can be, and have been, used to improve the quality of human life as a consequence of a drug-induced altered state of consciousness.

After all, how else would they do it? Novel solutions demand novel thinking. Novel thinking is certainly not achieved by repetitively going over the same neural pathways for years and years on end.

Some thinkers, like Terence McKenna, even credit the use of psychoactive drugs for much of the initial impulse to civilise our species and for the first stirrings of spirituality in the human creature. It’s also an open secret that much of the creative technological thinking that made reading this website possible was sparked by LSD.

The Sobriety Bias Syndrome, a kind of Puritanical abuse of the bandwagon fallacy, makes all of these insights harder to achieve by binding people’s thinking to the most mundane, banal, plebian simplicities that can be devised.

The sobriety bias is usually promulgated by a decidedly mediocre sort of person, best characterised as being incredibly boring, and sufficiently so to have long since driven all interesting people out of their social circles.

Is It Time For Drug Licenses?

It’s obvious by now that New Zealand politicians have completely lost all control of the drug laws. From the legal highs circus to the disaster that was the Psychoactive Substances Act to the obstinate refusal to even discuss medicinal cannabis, we all know that they’ve lost the plot.

So when we get rid of them, we might as well get rid of their whole rotten system (founded on lies) and start from scratch, basing our drug policy on scientific evidence instead of the hysteria, primitive superstition and vicious envy that has characterised the standard approach until now.

If we start from scratch, what would our system of drug laws, restrictions and prohibitions look like?

This article suggests that the best model would be to have a system of different classes of license to purchase different classes of drugs.

This would operate much like the current system for licensing of motor vehicles. In the same way that anyone wishing to operate a motorcycle must demonstrate competence in a different set of skills to someone wishing to operate a regular car, so too does anyone wishing to use a drug safely need to understand various sets of skills relating to the class of drug.

For example, tobacco is a very safe drug in terms of how difficult it is to overdose (basically impossible) and how long it takes heavy use to kill you (several decades on average). So getting a license to buy tobacco would be very simple. Probably little more than demonstrating an awareness of the effects of tobacco and how to get help if they feel they are addicted.

Methamphetamine, on the other hand, is not so safe. It is very easy to use methamphetamine in a way that inadvertently leads to health problems.

So getting a license to use recreational methamphetamine might be more like getting a helicopter license – it may take a few years, it may require character references, it may require an absence of prior criminal convictions, it may require that the individual’s methamphetamine use is accounted for by a pharmacist who would notice a creeping addiction etc.

If anything, requiring a license to drink alcohol would make more sense than anything else. For one thing, people already have to prove that they are 18 years of age or older before they can buy alcohol, so having to have an alcohol license would not be an extra hassle.

For another – and this is the major advantage – an alcohol license would make it much easier for the justice system to deal with alcohol-related misbehaviour: simply take the alcohol license away.

Drunk in charge of a motor vehicle? Loss of alcohol license and driver’s license. Drunk and bash someone over the head for a laugh? Loss of alcohol license and a fine or imprisonment. Drinking yourself to death and your GP knows he’s watching you die? Loss of alcohol license and the option of an addiction management course.

As it stands currently, you can get drunk, bash someone, get a suspended sentence because prison for common assault is considered a bit heavy, and then be back on the piss that afternoon.

Curiously, there is already an example of such a thing in Polynesia: alcohol licenses in Tonga.

If one imagines a system in which a person could use basically whatever drug they wanted as long as they could complete a reasonable, objective, intelligently-designed series of tasks that demonstrated competency to use it with a minimum of negative externalities on society, it seems so much better than the stupidity we now have.

It would also bring some respect back for the mental health services, as it is currently impossible to have any when they lie to their patients about the medicinal value of various drugs: it would be impossible to get away with telling such lies under an evidence-based system.

This would also circumvent other problems, such as the potential for drug tourism. People who come on short visits to New Zealand won’t have drug licenses, and Kiwis will be reluctant to use their licenses to buy drugs because, if caught, they would lose them.

Such a system of licensing would make it much easier to correctly respond to societal health and crime problems than the current “destroy the drug user” model.

The Fundamental Conceit of the Mental Health System

Being forced to try to fit into our extremely unnatural society causes all kinds of mental health problems

The strangest thing about being a mental health patient is that the mental health services act as if fitting into our society in a productive capacity is natural and normal, and that anyone who cannot do this for whatever reason must be abnormal.

The attitude that fitting into our system is natural and normal is the fundamental conceit of the mental health system.

The truth is that the human animal has evolved to fit an ecological niche that is almost nothing like the lives we actually live today, which are as artificial as Disneyland.

Humans have evolved to suit a reasonably specific set of social conditions. In the biological past, it was rare to live in a group of people larger than about 150. This was because the nomadic lifestyle that was the norm back then could not support larger groups, primarily because of the absence of agriculture.

In these groups of 150 or so, there was very little in the way of social order. In this chaos, however, there was a degree of freedom that humans have adapted to. There was never an authority that made some behaviours against the “law”, as there was no agricultural surplus and therefore no way of maintaining an enforcer class.

As a consequence, humans were able to live in accordance with the natural curiosity that has provided our species with a decisive survival edge.

This is not an argument for anarcho-primitivism and is not intended to romanticise the past. The point is simply to describe the distance between the degree of freedom that we have evolved to consider natural and the degree of freedom currently afforded to us in modern society.

Perhaps the most unnatural thing about our society is the nuclear family. When there were tribes of 150, young children had almost infinite access to social reinforcement – it was possible to play with cousins of a similar age, and to talk to people much older than one’s parents, at almost any time one wanted.

In modern society, the early social development of a child is restricted to what they can get from the nuclear family unit. So instead of playing with cousins they watch television or go on the tablet, and instead of listening to stories from their elders they watch more television.

This means that almost everyone in our society grows up with a grossly unnatural deficit of both quality and quantity of social contact.

Because social contact is necessary to release oxytocin, and because oxytocin is necessary for proper brain development, the inevitable consequence of the nuclear family model is an increase in social retardation, reflected in our skyrocketing autism rates.

Neither is it at all natural to be forced to wake up early in the morning from the age of four so that one can go to school.

The natural sleep-wake cycle of a child is similar to that of a cat – one sleeps when one is tired, and is awake otherwise. In a state of nature, a child will nap frequently throughout the day.

This is not permitted under the mass education model. Under our model of schooling, even five year-olds have to stay awake all day uninterrupted, which is extremely unnatural. Should this cause them sleep deprivation they just have to suffer it.

Perhaps the worst is that it isn’t natural to not be able to discuss these things. If you go to see a psychiatrist in our mental health care system it is not possible to discuss whether these problems have been caused to you by our culture.

The attitude, which cannot be questioned or discussed, is that our culture is perfect; any problems you have fitting into it are yours and yours alone.

If sleep deprivation makes a child misbehave they just have to go on sedatives. If it causes an inability to concentrate they just have to go on Ritalin. Should it be so bad that they start to hallucinate they just have to go on anti-psychotics.

This conceit alone makes for terrible treatment outcomes for patients. Because the mental healthcare system may not acknowledge the real cause of the suffering of its patients, neither can it actually treat that suffering. The best it can do is to treat the symptoms by dishing out mountains of highly profitable pharmaceuticals.

New Zealand is Now More Backwards Than South Africa

A New Zealand family is torn in half because draconian laws prevent them from accessing the natural medicine their daughter needs to prevents seizures. Corporate interests have made all alternatives to pharmaceuticals illegal, so the family is forced to flee to South Africa to get healthcare.

It sounds like a dystopian cyberpunk novel along the lines of The Verity Key, but this is actually the reality of New Zealand today.

Kiwis like to smugly think that their country is more socially advanced than the others: after all, we gave women the right to vote in 1893. Surely we’re more advanced than South Africa, in any case. But on the major moral issues of the day, New Zealand is already more backwards than South Africa.

A court in the Western Cape just ruled that cannabis can be used in the home without fear of prosecution. This means that South Africa has a more enlightened, compassionate and mature approach to the War on Drugs than New Zealand.

Does any court in New Zealand have the courage to do that? Not a chance in hell. Our judges and justice system representatives happily lick the arses of the politicians who command them to put Kiwis in cages for their use of a medicinal plant.

This comes after Uruguay fully legalised cannabis in 2013.

It might come as a blow to the pride of Kiwi readers to hear that their country, long considered forwards-thinking, is now more culturally backwards than South Africa and parts of South America. But it’s true, and we’re going to have to get used to it. They have surpassed us in cultural advancement, because we have stagnated so badly.

The total failure of the New Zealand Baby Boomers to hold the political class to account has meant that New Zealanders actually lack rights than people in certain parts of Africa enjoy.

When South Africa legalised gay marriage in 2006, Kiwis who knew about it mostly wrote it off as a fluke, one that went against the run of play. But now that a South African court has ruled cannabis legal – again, well in advance of any New Zealand court doing so – we Kiwis have to accept that we are now the socially and culturally retarded cousin in the relationship. They have surpassed us.

Even prisoners in Uruguayan jails have access to medicinal cannabis.

Considering that one of the major psychiatric uses for medicinal cannabis is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and considering that misbehaving on account of having complications from PTSD is one of the major reasons why people end up in prison, withholding it from prisoners in New Zealand seems inhumanely cruel.

Cruel, but reflective of who we really are, not who we pretend to be. Our reputation as a world leader on social issues is gone, gone, gone. We pissed it down the toilet for tax cuts and a lift in the value of our property portfolios.

The third world country at the bottom of Africa that had apartheid based on race until 1994 is now more socially advanced than New Zealand. That’s how far behind we have fallen. That’s how badly the Baby Boomer intellectuals have failed us.

Kiwis, we are now more backwards than South Africa, and this is not a new idea that has fluttered into the consciousness but a grim reality that has been bitterly chewed over for a decade. Is there anyone left with the will to challenge this?

Alt-Centrism: A Political Philosophy Whose Time Has Come

The cozy political paradigm that most of us went into 2016 with has now been completely shattered. Way back then, there was still some vague kind of belief that it was possible to strike a meaningful compromise between the various political actors on the world stage.

Now, everyone to the left of Adolf Hitler is screaming “Nazi!” at everyone to the right of Bernie Sanders, and those people are screaming “Cuck!” right back.

This means that most people are both Nazis and cucks, depending on the degree of political fanaticism of whoever is screaming at them at any given time and to which pole that person happens to have gravitated towards.

It’s an ugly scene all round.

Simply speaking, the left is a reaction to the right. The right are the same people who naturally have all the power (namely, the orderly) and the left is a reaction to this. In particular, it is a recognition by the disorderly that they have to impose some order upon themselves or lose ground in the political battlefield.

The centre is a reaction to both the left and the right. More precisely, it is a reaction to the constant fighting that once characterised the two-party (or two-pole) system. It’s an attempt to put peacefulness above all.

The alt-right is similar. The alt-right is a reaction to the left being shit and then a counter-reaction to the right being also shit. The alt-right cannot be understood unless it is seen as a double rejection, of both the left and the right.

The alt-centre, therefore, is a rejection of all of the left and the right and the centre, not to mention the alt-right and – in anticipation of it ever standing up – the alt-left: in other words, it’s a rejection of the entire political system.

This triple rejection of tired old political dogmas makes alt-centrism the real alternative way of political movements. It finally provides a solution to the balance fallacy when applied to politics.

The balance fallacy in politics occurs when a person or voting bloc decides that some kind of vague middle ground between the demands of capital (right wing) and the demands of labour (left wing) is necessarily the best compromise solution.

Note that pointing out this fallacious reasoning here does not mean that one is saying that a balance is bad in and of itself, or that either of the two extremes of left and right would be better in charge.

That is a false trilemma, which is what you get if you see through the false dilemma posed with left and right.

All three positions – pro-capital, pro-labour, and pro-compromise – are all terrible positions because they are all necessarily pro-political system. They are all positions within the broader paradigm of legitimising the use of the political system as a mechanism by which one can exploit one’s class enemies.

The reason why it is impossible to simply strike a balance is that the two wings of the political system co-operate to take power incrementally away from the populace under the pretense of striking a balance. This works in the same way that a cartel works – the members of the cartel agree to offer an equally bad deal to different groups of people.

The way forward will be the way promoted by neophyte political movements like Not A Party. This rag-tag bunch of New Zealanders, led by whoever a random number generator says is the leader on any given day, run in elections with the specific intent of losing.

They then claim the people who have not voted are their supporters, which gives them the largest number of seats in the Not A Parliament. Control of Not A Parliament allows them to not pass any laws, which makes them not responsible for things like cannabis prohibition, which costs New Zealand $400,000,000 per year.

The delusion that all questions of human suffering must be solved first and foremost through the political system is one that has to be rejected if we are actually to make any progress on those questions.

Because there are very, very, very few politicians who could rightly claim that their actions as a politician resulted in a net win for the human survival project.

The Left Needs to go Back to Its Working Class Roots

The sentiment expressed here – that if you do a working class job you must be a piece of shit – is depressingly common among people who claim to be leftists

A common sentiment among many leftists today is that the working class is fundamentally deplorable, as if everyone who works with their hands or rides the bus is something out of Romper Stomper, just waiting for the chance to bash some poor transsexual or Muslim and get away with it.

These regressive leftists even use codewords like “fascist” to disguise their contempt for the working class. That this has been allowed to happen is the reason why left-wing politics are in such a state of complete disarray in the modern West.

In many ways this is deliberate. The children of the political elite know that the more effectively they can destroy working-class movements, the more power they will inherit when they inevitably do inherit it, and so they have gone to some effort to cause them to rot from within.

This is why social justice movements are so often full of middle-class people who aren’t really serious about the issue. It’s also why so much mainstream media attention is given to leftists who are fighting for issues that only, or primarily, affect the middle class.

Essentially, the middle and upper classes have infiltrated the political and media structures that used to give a voice to working-class people, and have twisted them to middle-class interests, or simply destroyed them where this was not possible.

This is how we have ended up with a situation where the white working class votes for a Republican like Trump, and those claiming to be in favour of the disadvantaged force those same disadvantaged to compete with refugees for housing, jobs and public space.

No-one in the working class could give a damn about gay adoption, or Syrian refugees, or transsexual toilet rights, or global warming.

If you’re hungry, the only thing you care about is food.

If you’re sick, the only thing you care about is medicine.

If you’re cold, the only thing you care about is shelter.

If you’re broke, the only thing you care about is money.

If you’ve had a hard day, the only thing you care about is chilling out for a bit.

Watching Jacinda Ardern on television passionately arguing the need for homosexuals to be allowed to adopt kids, while her party has gone silent on meaningful questions like cannabis law reform and the TPPA, is a disgusting sight to the working-class people who used to be represented by the Labour Party.

As mentioned above, much of this is deliberate. The Labour Party are, despite their rhetoric, ultimately as conservative as National, because ultimately they are part of the same establishment. Just look at the ease with which Shane Jones shifts from one wing to the other if you doubt that the ruling class is on the side of the ruling class and the rest of us are on our fucking own.

Ardern’s objective, as it was for the multimillionaire David Cunliffe, is to waste the energy of the people who wish for social change, and to misdirect it to where it can do no damage to the establishment.

This is why the Labour Party promotes gay adoption, which affects perhaps a hundred Kiwis, and ignores cannabis law reform, which affects four hundred thousand.

After all, fucking another man in the arse does not generally bring about patterns of thought that are dangerous to the control systems of the establishment, whereas taking psychoactive chemicals regularly does.

A far higher proportion of cannabis users than prospective gay adoptive parents are societal outcasts, which is hardly surprising when you can be put in prison for being one.

Until such a time as the left goes back to its roots – which is giving a voice to the truly disadvantaged, not merely to whoever’s cause is the most fashionable this moment – it will continue to lose influence.

Chains of Clay and a Universal Basic Income

A universal basic income could be expected to drastically reduce the number of women forced into prostitution by poverty

Some forward-thinking people are starting to discuss the idea of a universal basic income. This is the idea that the Government would make a small but weekly payment to each adult resident citizen, just enough to keep them alive but not enough for any luxuries or even any decencies.

Predictably, the idea that the Government might help the poor in some new fashion has resulted in cries of communism from those who expect to inherit large amounts of property.

But there are reasons to believe that bringing in a universal basic income, even if it was as little as the current unemployment benefit, would significantly raise the standard of living of the average New Zealander.

For instance, a universal basic income would, at a stroke, remove all the cruel things that people do to each other out of desperate poverty.

One might object here that they would not remove all the cruel things that people do to each other out of greed – and that’s true in some cases – but consider this.

Every great dictator or tyrant who convinced a mass of people to go against their better nature, and to later regret that they had done so, convinced those people by offering them money.

How?

They just looked for desperately poor people. Poverty is control. That’s the way it has to be understood for the psychological reactions of people to the question of a universal basic income to be understood.

Hitler could not have achieved what he did without the Great Depression and the economic restrictions imposed on Germany as a consequence of the Versailles Treaty.

People like to make a big deal about Hitler’s rhetoric and oratory skills, but the naked fact is that the NSDAP paid men to serve in the military, and they could pay a lot of men for not much money because those men were all as poor as shit.

This is why getting the rich to give up some of the money they have extorted out of the poor through their control of the Police and of private property is not a simple matter of appealing to the simple fact that it would reduce the sum total of human suffering.

One must also take into account the loss of power this entails.

Think of all the women in history who were forced to accept the sexual advances of a man they didn’t like because they needed the money.

Think of all the men in history who have wound up doing violence to strangers because they were forced to be obedient to someone violent for the sake of money.

Think of all the kings and queens who were able to raise an army to invade some other peaceful place because the peasants of their kingdom had no access to the commons on account of enclosure, and therefore were forced to take the monarch’s silver or starve.

Think of all the times a parent who, on account of stress from worry about where the next meal was coming from, took a short-sighted decision in the heat of the moment and came to regret it.

Go back as far in history as you like. How many robberies, how many burglaries, how many thefts, how many assaults and murders could have been prevented had we merely seen to it that people didn’t need to go hungry, and did so with a similar effort to what we already put into punishing and protecting ourselves from robbers, burglars, thieves and murderers?

We’re not talking about an equal distribution of luxuries, or even decencies. A person living merely on a universal basic income will be too poor to afford much beyond food and shelter – but at least they will not be so poor that they will take violent actions out of desperation.

One might raise an objection to this on the grounds that, if people were willing to look after each other enough to introduce a universal basic income, they would have done so already and would not need coercion through Government taxation.

This objection is only reasonable up to a certain historical point. When the productivity of the average citizen has advanced to such a degree that simply by pressing a button they can cause machines and computers to produce a million dollars worth of goods, there’s no reason barring a sadistic need for control to cut non-machine-owners out of this cornucopia.

Of course, much of this discussion is academic in the case of New Zealand, which is 20 years behind the rest of the world in progress on questions like this and getting worse. Medicinal cannabis was legalised in California in 1996 and we are yet to even have a proper discussion about it, so we will likely be several decades behind the rest of the world on the basic income question too.

The Need For Luciferianism in the Modern World

The symbol of Lucifer is of an angel who descends from some higher place to bring enlightenment to the beings in the darkness below. In some forms, like in his incarnation as Prometheus, this is done out of a love for humanity. In others, like his incarnation as Satan, this is entirely accidental. This essay will argue that – despite what appears to be commonly believed – there always will be a need for Luciferianism this century.

Asking what value Luciferianism has to the modern world can be answered by looking at the people who fear it. One can soon notice that they are the same kind of people who have always feared it.

They are the benighted, those who quiver in fear at the light because they know that it illuminates something within themselves that they are ashamed of, something that would make them appear undignified to those who look on and judge.

These people have a reason to oppose Lucifer because their power comes from the gossamer shadows of lies that they cast on the rest of humanity. Lies about God, about human nature, about the world, about the future. Politicians and priests.

Anyone who, like Lucifer, brings light to people is the enemy of anyone who controls those people with lies.

If one goes back far enough, it is possible to imagine a situation where there were a number of primitive ape-men watching a burning tree that had been struck by lightning or similar. The natural reaction of all animals, like it was for us, is to be afraid of fire, and so they would have kept back from it.

But one of those ape-men would have carried within him the spirit of Lucifer, and he would have gone forward (striding or creeping, it doesn’t matter) and approached the fire without fear, eventually learning to tame it. Such an ape-man (it could just as well have been an ape-woman) would have been responsible for the development of firecraft and therefore, eventually, of civilisation.

So it can be said that, were it not for Lucifer or one like him, we would all be eating raw meat still, cowering in the shadows.

So much for the past. Because the age we live in now is extremely materialistic, even a metaphor such as Lucifer will often be dismissed as a religious delusion. The very idea that Lucifer represents a courageous rejection of stagnant dogma is often itself considered part of the cultural baggage of religion.

The mastery of fire was so long ago that it’s almost irrelevant, says the materialist. Now, we have mastered almost all of reality: we have sent a man to the Moon, we have built atomic bombs and power plants, we have built computers powerful enough to simulate weather.

The truth is that our modern material advances are the yang to the yin of spiritual enfeeblement. As Tyler Durden told us in Fight Club: “Our great war is a spiritual war.”

Even if all of the problems in the world had been solved and we were living in utopia, there would still be a need for Lucifer to come in and to break up the lazy, complacent lies that we would be telling each other, lies that would risk us falling back into an animal state.

After all, we know that nothing lasts, that yang falls into yin before yang reasserts itself.

Lucifer represents the spirit of anyone who asks questions to authority. For example, who will question the cozy idea that our current time and place is the most morally and philosophically advanced of all times and of all places, and that our current crop of leaders have everything under control, and in doing so protect us from the stagnation that creeps in to every successful society? Only Lucifer.

Therefore, Luciferianism has the potential to protect us from the arrogance or hubris that inevitably destroys a culture once it has started to believe its own bullshit.

Lucifer will always live on in the spirit of anyone willing to give the middle finger to an authority figure spouting lies or fearmongering. It doesn’t matter if there lies come from the left or the right, or from anywhere else.

Go back far enough and there would have been a cowardly faux shaman telling someone else not to go too close to the fire under any circumstances, for it simply could not be mastered – and there would have been one who chose not to believe him.

Whenever lies and untruths start to act as chains weighing down the soul of a people – family, tribe, nation, race, species doesn’t matter – there will be a need for people to summon the spirit of Lucifer to burn them away.

Is this the Age of the Pleb?

There are many systems of thought that describe various times, epochs or ages that humanity appears to pass through on its collective historical journey through the Great Fractal. Plato’s Republic described it alchemically, the Hindu cosmology describes it in a similar fashion and many other traditions have a time of increasing disorder leading to a climactic revolution.

In Republic, Plato laid out how culture disintegrates over time. Society begins in a Golden Age, according to Socrates in Book VIII, and gradually deteriorates.

It begins with rulers who put virtue above all, and who accordingly cannot own property. Because of the errors that these good people inevitably make as a consequence of being fallible, they are replaced by an inferior and greedier set of rulers.

Eventually the greed of the society leads to money being lent out at high rates of interest, which inevitably concentrates wealth in the hands of a very few. Society degenerates further into the rule of the mob, when doing whatever one wishes to do is the only value.

Here there is little of the higher order that an alchemist would associate with gold, silver or iron. Indeed, the men of gold have vanished by the time it comes to democracy. The man of clay takes charge by convincing the man of iron that the man of silver wishes to enslave him, and by convincing the man of silver that the man of iron wishes to kill him, and so ensures that those two mutually destroy each other.

The Hindu timeline tells a fantastic – and weirdly similar – story. Each Great Year, or Age of Man, or Maha Yuga, itself consists of four smaller Yugas.

The first of these, the Satya Yuga, is also known as the Age of Truth, and it corresponds very closely to what an alchemist would call a Golden Age and what Plato would have called rule by aristocracy. Here it is the gods that are, rightly, in charge of their creation, and everyone knows their correct place.

In the next age, the Treta Yuga, righteousness gradually diminishes. An alchemist would call this an Age of Silver – spirituality begins to give way to materialism, and kings and rulers must use cunning to get their will through, no longer able to rely on the confidence that the ruled have in them.

The final stage is the Kali Yuga, which is known in Hinduism as a Dark Age.

Both of these systems of thought, like the Norse Ragnarok and the Abrahamist Armageddon, suggest that the human experience starts good and gradually gets worse until it has to be restarted in violent revolution. Before we get to this point, however, things have to become genuinely terrible.

An alchemist might point to the immense population surge of the last 150 years and declare that this must be the time of the man of clay, because it appears that no longer does anything other than sex matter. People breed mindlessly, with no thought to the long-term benefit of their actions or whether more offspring are desirable, and so the human population has exploded.

A consequence of this is a resurgence of lowest common denominator culture. American popular culture seems to have sunk to an almost childish level, with the people happy to accept any display of gross incompetence or unfitness for leadership from their ruling class.

In New Zealand it can be seen with the increasing media attention given to soccer, which is the McDonalds of world sports, at the expense of excellent sports such as rugby and cricket, and with the degeneration of the nation’s most popular media portals into click-baiting drivel.

Perhaps all of these systems of thought are all correct and we are currently living in the Age of the Pleb, ruled by the worst among us, and by the worst instincts within ourselves.

The good news is that, in all systems of thought that warn us of such a thing, the Age of the Pleb is always replaced by a new Golden Age.

To some extent, how this develops is inevitable. The man of gold, born into the age of the man of clay, finds himself impelled to take action. The degree of degeneration strikes him as obscene, and out of righteous anger he takes action.

This action usually has the effect of bringing fire into the world to burn away the rot and filth of the Age of the Pleb. Sometimes this means war – and with a massive and still-growing human population creating ever more pressure on ever depleting natural resources, this seems very possible.

The other way we might exit the Age of the Pleb is by a fiery revolution of thought, in which the mental cobwebs of long-decayed religions are burned away by righteous fire and the brutal monkey instincts at the bottom of our brains are tamed and sublimated into something valuable.