Category Archives: Ethics

Why “Jesus Loves You” Might be the Most Offensive Statement of All Time: The rational failure of unconditional love

It happens every so often.  You’re driving or walking along and you spy a bumper sticker, or a shirt, or a lapel pin sporting the (ostensibly) encouraging words “Jesus Loves You”.  Sometimes this proclamation is prefaced by “Smile!”, or punctuated with an actual smiley face.  My father in law had one of those stickers on his mini van for years.  He replaced it with a “Jesus is the answer” sticker.  That one was swapped out for a “Trump” sticker.  That one didn’t last on account of him discovering Trump’s affinity for whores and “pussy-grabbing” braggadocio.  Now I think he just sports the slightly jaded yet never truly out of style “Jesus saves”.  Yes, even my father-in-law finally came to see that for all of Trump’s virtues, avoiding fleshy hedonism isn’t one of them.  Of course if you think this means that he won’t be voting for the Donald again in 2020, you’ve got another thing coming.  Yet before we cry hypocrite, let’s remember that the left side of the political spectrum, which declares itself the true home of feminism, has never sufficiently condemned Bill Clinton for using the power of the Presidency to secure oral sex from a White House intern.  Clearly on both sides of the aisle there is a certain subjectivity we accept with respect to the moral character of our politicians.  I actually think it’s rather hypocritical to call Christians hypocrites for supporting Trump.  For Christians to shelve virtue in the interest of seeing their particular political aspirations realized in government doesn’t make them any more inconsistent than other constituency.  Christians, like everyone else, realize that you can’t always have your morality cake and eat it, too, when it comes to the fetid witches brew that is American politics.  All of us understand on some level (unless we are insane or idiotic) that government IS vice, pretty much by necessity, and this axiom isn’t lost on Christians, and rightly so.

So no, my devout orthodox Christian father-in-law sporting a Trump sticker on his mini van does not offend me.  The mini van might, but not the sticker.

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“Jesus loves you” is a statement I will not accept from a stranger on the street.  In that context, I find such a claim fatuous, vapid, and presumptuous…at best.

First of all, how do you know Jesus loves me?  You don’t even know me.  I mean, the presumption and fake sentimentality is so odious and so gushing that one almost chokes on it.  You don’t know anything about me.  Maybe I’m lovable.  But maybe I’m intolerable.  Maybe I’m a miserable prick (true); a misanthrope who would push you into the Grand Canyon just to see the face you’d make as you went over.  Maybe I cheat on my wife or girlfriend, or steal from work, or lie to get my way.  Without knowing anything about me or the company I keep or if I even believe in God at all, you claim that I provide value to the Almighty as a function of literally nothing more than the fact that I exist, because that is ALL you actually know about me.  Further, you insinuate me into a relationship that I might not want and might not have asked for, and even more egregiously you do the same thing to Christ.

I already know how you will defend your position.  And I know you think it is rational and encouraging, but it is truly not these things at all, and is likely even worse than you can imagine.  The fact that “Jesus loves you” is purely meaningless bromide when absent any frame of reference is the least of its problems.

You’re going to say that Jesus loves all of his children, both his loyal followers and his wandering strays alike, and that there is nothing about me, my life, my choices, or my actions that his love does not (as opposed to “cannot”…and this is very important) overlook.  “Jesus LOVES you” you say.  It is not that he will or would love me IF if I happened to repent of my wicked ways and embrace a new moral compass, with a commitment to his specific brand of religious ethics.  It’s that it DOESN’T MATTER, you see.  He loves me…now.  Right now.  He loves me not IF I repent of my evil and rebellious ways and embrace his version of righteous living, but IN SPITE of those evil and rebellious ways…meaning his love utterly ignores them.

Um…what?

Jesus might like to see me repent, in the interest of a broader morality and a desire for peace and harmony amongst humanity, as an expression of his recognition of the general value of humanity at large, but this is not the same thing as loving me, specifically, for nothing.  In other words, Jesus may want the asshole to repent in order to make life for the non-assholes better.  But this does not imply love for the asshole. It implies mercy on him, perhaps, from a general recognition of the worth of human life, but not love.

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The context-less claim that “Jesus loves you” implies that there is no cost to love…no value which must be provided in exchange for it.  Love is free; it costs one nothing at all; comes with no expectations of any kind; asks no committement to change, not even an attempt.  It implies that the love of God, and thus by extension love in general, is VALUELESS; and being valueless, is IRRELEVANT.  And being irrelevant, isn’t love, or anything else for that matter.

Unconditional love is unconditional precisely because it is completely meaningless.  It can afford to be unconditional because there is no practical difference between being granted it and NOT being granted it.  The outcome is the same.  That which requires NOTHING of me does not and cannot affect me.  It is categorically pointless.  Christians think that love is a cause, rather than an effect.  That is, once granted, it generates a character worthy of it.  They never seem to realize that if it is given away for free then there is no reason for the recipient to bother altering his character in the first place.  You don’t give money to someone out of the blue and then wait around for him to come back later, having conjured up something you want.  Why would he?  You’ve asked zero responsibility of him.

It doesn’t work that way.  You find the value you want FIRST, or you ask someone to manufacture it, or retrieve it, and THEN you give them your resources.  Love is not a magic potion…it is a currency that is given for something you want that the other party ALREADY POSSESSES and is a position to trade.  It is not unconditional.  Like any currency it is UTTERLY conditional upon the person with whom you are exchanging goods ALREADY POSSESSING or BEING ABLE TO POSSESS that which you find valuable.

Do you have any idea how evil and destructive this notion of unconditional love is?  Do you not understand the implied DEATH which haunts it?  To give love to those who need not earn it is a recipe for human annihilation.  If it is implied that love must be given unconditionally then what is to prevent it from being DEMANDED by the selfish and violent and manipulative among us?  And what is to prevent them from defining it in whatever way they choose?  Unconditional love is love that is at root valueless, and thus it is in essence meaningless, which means it can be defined in whatever way the oppressor decides is most efficacious to his wicked scheme…your money, time, property, or your life.  To consider it a moral imperative (because “GOD does it”) to give love to he who need not earn it is to concede that he thus has a right to demand your plenary sacrifice.  Mark my words, this philosophy enslaves humanity, and underwrites the logical defense of ALL manner of carnality, calumny, oppression, exploitation, and murder.

I submit that in addition to my father-in-law and other well-meaning Christians, there is someone else who desires that the random stranger on the street know “Jesus loves him”.

The Devil.

END

What Ayn Rand Gets Very Right and Christians Get Very Wrong (and why Christian Orthodoxy is Not About Love but Loathing)

The greatest contribution to ethics in the twentieth century I submit is Ayn Rand’s popularization of the Virtue of Selfishness.  Because what she gets so very right, up to the point of being utterly axiomatic (if our ethics are indeed rational), is that one who acts wholly in his own self-interest cannot but help be concomitantly acting in the interest of his neighbor.  Without fully delving into the metaphysics behind this axiom, in the interest of time and context, the root of this perfect ethic is that others are the complete existential equal of the Self.  This means that the default root moral status of all others is existential equality to the Self, and thus when one’s Self is pursued and its interests sought, the interest of the Other is a natural consequence, and manifests to a qualitatively equal degree.

Allow me to explain. And here, understand, is where I will deviate from Rand’s specific metaphysics, and exposit my own defense of virtuous selfishness.  The following exposition very much depends upon a completely different metaphyscial primary than the one subscribed to by Rand (existence).  My primary is Ability, and from this I assert that individual consciousness is a proper and necessary component of any rational metaphysics; and, being the ONLY thing which can develop and apply reason (conceptual consistency), which is how reality and truth is established AT ALL, consciousness, itself, at root, is an ENTIRELY objective manifestation of reality.  Conversely, Rand rejects consciousness as having any particularly necessary function within reality taken holistically, and sees it as intrinsically subjective, as its primary function is, as Objectivism implies, to interpret that (existence) which is fundamentally exclusive of interpretation.

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Every individual human being exists metaphysically as a Self qua Self (YOU (or I) as a function of your SELF…the “you-ness” which IS YOU in the most fundamental sense); and the FACT of that existence is itself the PROOF of the propriety of one’s existence.  In other words, the FACT that one exists is the proof of the de facto NECESSITY of one’s existence—reality NEEDS one’s existence to be, in fact, REAL, you might say.  Reality cannot be absolutely real if its components—e.g. one who exists—are not essential.  For example, it is irrational to assert that one who exists could just as easily not have existed (been born); this means, effectively, that their existence is not fundamentally necessary to reality.  The reason this is irrational is simple.  We have NO frame of reference for the non-existence of what exists, because non-existence and existence are mutually exclusive contexts.  Or, simplified, IS and IS NOT are mutually exclusive frames of reference.  If I AM, then my frame of reference is from the place of WHAT IS (what is real, and exists, period, and absolutely).  Which means that I can ONLY observe and describe what likewise IS.  In order for me to talk of you, for example, not needing to exist, you NEED TO EXIST.  Do you see the contradiction?  I cannot claim that your existence is not necessary since it is necessary that you exist in order for me to make the claim in the first place.  Whatever exists, exists; whatever is real is real.  Period.  The hypothetical thought experiment of “what if X did not exist/had never been born” is INIFINITELY hypothetical.  It is entirely irrelevant to anything, except perhaps, a good science fiction story.  Now, it is quite tempting here to dive into the rabbbit hole of choice and free will, but I have to end this article sometime before retirement, so let’s just leave it at that for now.

As I was saying, the fact that one exists is proof of the de facto necessity of their existence.  And here is where it gets interesting…because here is where metaphysics inexorably incorporates what I call the Morality of the Metaphysical.  What I mean is that metaphysics, in order to mean anything, must have, itself, intrinsic value, and thus cannot be entirely cordoned off from eithcs.  It’s fascinating just how the five categories of philosophy (metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, politics, aesthetics) incorporate and even embody one another so precisely.  Because one’s existence is necessary, one’s existence is necessarily GOOD.  Put generally, existence (or reality…the two are essentially equivalent, metaphysically speaking) is Good, because it MUST BE; and since man exists, he likewise MUST BE, and therefore he is, in his root existence, likewise Good.

Thus, all men being equal in their metaphysical value (Good), and understanding that the Individual Self is that from which and to which all men (being at root Individuals) act, and understanding that the Self is the reference for reality, communicating meaning with other Selves (other men) and drawing a consensus of meaning together, then all men who thus act in service to their own Individual interests will necessarily and concomitantly act in service to the interests of their fellow man.  And this is what is meant by the “virtue of Selfishness”.

For example, if I choose to marry and have children with a woman I note to possess virtues I find valuable, based upon a RATIONAL definition of virtue, then in keeping and fulfilling my wedding vows I am serving my own interests as much as I am serving the interests of my wife and children, who have entered into the relationship voluntarily (the only way a true relationship is possible).  And, yes, I know the children didn’t “choose” to be born, but (without going into metaphysical detail here) it is simply irrational to consider anyone, even children, as someone OBLIGATED to a relationship against their will.  It is my job as a parent to make sure that I provide my children with an environment that reflects their right to the sanctity of their own lives, body and property, with abundant displays of affection and genuine pleasure and privilege with respect to their company, so as to accurately represent the context of what a voluntary relationship should look like.  In short, I am obligated to provide my children with an environment that they could CHOOSE to be in, by all rational standards (love, resources, negotiation, the absence of corporeal punishment,  shared responsibility to whatever degree possible, shared input, respect, rejection of any Authority/Submission dynamic, etc.etc.).

Getting married and devoting resources to having children then is not sacrifice, it is selfishness.  It utterly serves me…and in rationally serving myself, I have served my family.  And this is precisely why there is virtue in selfishness.  If I build a business to serve myself, the corollary is provision of value to my employees and customers.  I never have to think about their needs and desires directly or explicitly.  Their needs are fulfilled as a function of fulfilling my own.  All notions of altruism, sacrifice, charity (in the “giving of one’s self” sense) are entirely superfluous.  Real moral utopia then is not found in sacrifice, but selfishness.  And as scandalizing as this may seem, this is, in fact, the ONLY true and rational morality possible for man.  Period.

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In order to employ virtuous selfishness we must eradicate Self-loathing from ethics entirely.  In other words, we must understand and accept the inherent value of man at his metaphysical root.  Because man is metaphysically Good, he must possess an innate and existential sufficiency to the apprehension of Truth (epistemology), and Truth’s corollary, Good, and then make choices in service to these things.  Man is by his nature able to define and apprehend the distinction between truth and falsehood and good and evil and then make volitional choices based upon that knowledge.  Man possesses AGENCY, which is capable and efficacious, as a function of his very metaphysical IDENTITY.  Man in his natural state is Good, and thus in his epistemology (capacity for knowledge) capable of Truth, and thus in his ethics (capacity for morality) capable of choosing Good, and thus in his politics (capacity for efficacious moral action) capable of manifesting (acting out) Truth and Goodness.  Man’s sufficiency to the knowledge of the true and the good is one with his root nature…it is not bestowed upon him post-conception by some external force, be it God or be it Nature.  Certainly, man is not born knowing…he is not born wise.  This is not what I am saying.  I am saying that man IS born ABLE to know, and ABLE to acquire wisdom.  He learns because he IS.  His abilty to think and do is HIS, from himself, by nature.  It is not given to him…it IS him.  And it is here where my apostasy with respect to orthodox Christianity comes to a fine point.  Orthodox Christianity rejects this metaphysic to the point of war, literally.  And it is why Christianity is an unmitigated disaster by any rational measure: social, emotional, intellectual, psychological, political…it is a shared psychosis that eats humanity from the inside out.  It HATES humanity with a red hot passion…it knows absolutely nothing of love at root.  But we will get to that.

For man to act truly morally, he must accept a root nature that has endemic/intrinsic moral value; and thus, from this, knowing it and knowing its ethical implications, when he acts (necessarily) from and to himself in his own best interest, he concordantly and concomitantly acts in service to the Interests of his fellow man.  This is the reason why those who accept their own natural moral worth are the ones who are the most compassionate.  In almost every case, on the contrary, those who loath themselves prove to be the most insufferable and vile of the species, either explicitly or surreptitiously.  Every narcissist and psychopath in the world operates from the metaphysical principle that declares themselves to possess no root worth, and thus neither does anyone else.  Their occasional sense of grandiosity is a mask for their terminal and inviolable self-hatred.  I submit that this is axiomatic.  There is no way you can despise your fellow man and love yourself, where “man” is defined RATIONALLY.  There is only one rational morality, and it begins with innate Self-worth and bestows that same worth upon others.

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Here then we can begin to see the categorical failure of the orthodox Christian Ethic.  It is an ethic that asserts obedience to Authority (the divine Ideal, the Church, and the State…the unholy trinity of Platonist ethics) as man’s highest moral obligation, not the making of moral choices; asserts punishment, not rational self-inflicted consequence, as the proper outcome for ethical failure; asserts fear, not love, as the primary form of human motivation.  Bear in mind that this is NOT what Christ ACTUALLY teaches, nor what the Bible declares in either of its Testaments (though I will submit that the Apostle Paul’s grip on rational ethics often gets quite tenuous).  But orthodox Christianity has about as much use for Christ as Tiberius.  Christian ethics of the last 1500 years or so is a derivative of pagan gnosticism, with its interpretive lense brought to bear upon Christ’s legacy first by Augustine of Hippo and formally canonized and organized by the Martin Luther and John Calvin.  My point is simply:  don’t blame Christ for the abject failure of Christian ethics.

Orthodox Christianity espouses the metaphysical insufficiency of man.  He is not in his nature Good, but Evil, and therefore utterly incapable of apprehending Truth and choosing Good.  His very IDENTITY is antagonistic to TRUTH.  This is why Christianity asserts that all knowledge and morality must be DICTATED to man.  His natural insufficiency to Truth makes him capable of no real understanding.  He must thus be treated, fundamentally, as one would an animal.  He is to be trained, not taught.  He is to be motivated by threats and violence, and rewarded with condescension.  It is why the concept of “humility” has been bastardized by the Church to mean a rejection of the idea that one possesses an inntate, natural sufficiency to goodness and truth.  To take credit for one’s own success and accomplishments is viewed as “sinful pride”, because anything of true value comes not from within man, but from without.  Any moral behavior exhibited by an individual always occurs in SPITE of his humanity, not because of it.  It is why even “saved” Christians still speak of “needing the gospel”, and explain that they don’t actually do any good thing in and of themselves, but operate entirely “under God’s grace”.  It’s the whole false idea of “but for the grace of God go I”—an Individual making good choices according to his own volition, and reaping the benefits of such choices is anathema to Christian ethics.  In Christianity there is no fundamental difference between the unsaved criminal being marched to the dungeon and the saved Christian spectator observing from afar.  Both are criminals at root, as far as God is concerned, it’s just that by some divine mystery God decided to spare the Christian.  It has nothing to do with the Christian spectator actually CHOOSING to turn away from criminal activity and because of THAT avoiding a date with the iron maiden.  And even if Christianity might equivocate and concede that choice is possible, it is only because God grants one the “grace” to make that choice…so no, it’s not actually man making the choice at all, it’s God.  Left to himself, man will NEVER make the right choice.  And this assertion denies man any REAL choice entirely.

Christians understand, at least implicitly, because the doctrine declares it EXPLICITLY, that there can be no actual justification of or for that (man) which is absolute evil at its existential root.  The whole salvation process is very much an appeal to inexplicable mystical powers which transcend man’s “finite” reality; his intellect and his reasoning.  There are no answers to the paradoxes (rational contradictions) of Christian theology because they are utterly beyond the mind of man…beyond his very existence.  Man is saved, but he cannot say why beyond “grace”, and then a shrug as to what this actually means.  God chooses some people over others, seemingly at random.  There is some plan God has, we are told, but the wherefore and the why…who knows?  Christian metaphysics deny that a thing like salvation is possible, but somehow it happens anyway.  The whole philosophy is a massive boiling cauldron of contradiction simmering into a cosmic soup of “God’s mystery”.  Just take the cup and drink.  Don’t spend any time thinking about it.

So for all the talk of man receiving a “righteousness from God’, or a “new birth/new nature”, or being “Justified by Christ”, Christians implicitly understand that they are still Sin of Sin.  And this is why abject misery is so common in the Church. These aren’t congregations of broken people getting healed, as we are told.  These are execution chambers where people are slowly gassed into a brain dead stupor by contagious conginitve dissonance brought upon by the endlessly wafting sedative of rank mysticism.  The life of a Christian is not the fulfillment of the Self, but the sacrifice of it.  The Christian is not imbued with a sense of empowerment, but is instead entirely disarmed, intellectually, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually.  He learns not how to take upon himself true responsibility, but to hand off his duties and questions to God, letting “His will be done”, in yet another bastardization of the words of Christ.  The Christian does not learn to take up the mantle of his own cause and pursue his dreams with strength and confidence, but to utterly submit himself to “God’s plan”…outsourcing his brain to the Divine, as though God gave him a mind purely on a lark.  He is not given the freedom to exercise his own intellect, now unfettered by the lies of the world and the devil, in service to his own passions, but is sternly reminded that his greatest moral obligation is to obey Authority.  Once saved, the Christian soon finds himself under the “divine mandate” of the church leadership, who are expecting him to sacrifice his time and reasources in pursuit of not his own interests, but that of the greater Christian Ideal.  Of which, of course, they are in charge.

Thus the Christian, now saved and yet still lacking ANY REAL understanding of his own innate worth, is incapable of Self-love, and thus is likewise incapable of loving his neighbor.  The ONLY real, necessary, and ultimately relevant difference between one who is saved and one who is not is that he who is saved has recognized that the sum and substance of his life’s meaning and purpose is to annihilate himself in service to the Christian Authority placed over him, which is God and his Will as manifest by the ecclesiastical powers of the pulpit.  In other words, he is saved in order to sacrifice himself to the worldly ambitions of other men.  Period.

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According to the ethics of Christian orthodoxy, Self-loathing, not Self-love, is one’s default ethical frame of reference. Through the instruction of accepted orthodox doctrine, consistent in its essence amongst all protestant denominations and Catholicism, man is taught to hate his own existence as an act of his own First Sin (his birth) and thus concomitantly the existence of his neighbor.  He therefore implicitly yearns for the destruction of both.  In other words, as the orthodox Christian proclaims his love for God he implies his disgust for humanity.  The relationship betweeen loving God and hating man is indeed direct.  And this is scarcely surreptitious amongst Christians today, though perhaps not said quite as bluntly.  I have heard it stated this way:  that as one’s recognition of God’s glory (i.e. God’s supreme existential moral superiority) grows, a recognition of one’s own moral insufficiency (i.e. man’s supreme existential worthlessness) likewise grows.  And THIS, it is said, is the mark of a true Christian.  The mark of true salvation is that he continues to grow in the understanding that he HAS NO RIGHT TO EXIST IN THE FIRST PLACE, because his very existence at root is an offense to God.  And from this we can extrapolate further to see then the FOUNDATIONAL mark of one’s salvation:  the growing knowledge that he, being evil incarnate, is unable to possess a frame of reference for SALVATION AT ALL.

How is that for a kick in the crotch with irony?

It is this basic orthodox Self-loathing which is the reason Christians are so in love with rules and obsessed with punishment.  Man, being morally defunct in his existence, is insufficient to truth and to moral behavior.  And thus control, not freedom, and dictated behavior, not choice, is how the ethics of one’s salvation are to be worked out.  It is why Christianity has always promoted corporeal punishment for children, and has lusted endlessly after the power monopoly of the State—the Church almost ubiquitously imitates their own brand of absolute power (dictating behavior, punishing rulebreakers and wrongthink), routinely implementing Authority-Submission polity to the greatest extent it can get away with.  It is why churches are so often brothels of the worst kinds of moral degeneracy imaginable, like blackmail, child rape and all other varieties of sexual abomination, extortion, manipulation, deception, indoctrination, intimidation, oppression, theft, and murder.  It is why Christianity holds excommunication over the heads of the laity like the sword of Damocles, and why church schisms occur as often as Communion.  It is impossible to show love to others or one’s self when the metaphysics of one’s philosophy declare man’s very birth an act of moral corruption and a violation of God’s perfect creation.

Love, you see, is the desires and behavior generated by employing rational ethics.  Rational ethics places the Self as the moral frame of reference.  Rational ethics recognizes the legitimacy of man at his natural root, and understands the Self to be the singular essence of each human being, and which is necessarily good, and thus shall not be violated.  It shall be free to exist, not enslaved to Authority.  And since all men are equal Selves at root, making the SELF the reference for truth and morality (virtuous selfishness), it is ensured that an Individual, unfettered by the false chains of Authority, who will thus freely act in service to his own wishes and wants, will necessarily act in service to those of his neighbors in the form of cooperation.  All interactions with one’s fellow man will result in the mutual benefit of value exchange.  But again, notice how this—how this rational love—demands that man have intrinsic natural worth.  It concedes that man’s birth is an act of Divine Expression, not an offense to the Divine.  Since Christianity asserts that the birth of a human being is an expression of one’s natural depravity, and as such is an act of rebellion against God, rendering unto man an existential worthlessness to an infinite degree, love by any measure is simply impossible.  Man possess no frame of reference from which to give love or receive it.  And this is why salvation comes from God to man in SPITE of himself; indeed, all expressions of “love” from God or from others comes to man in spite of himself.  And all his acts of “love” are never done BY him, but THROUGH him, by the Spirit.  In other words, man qua man (man, himSelf) is merely a bystander to love and morality in general.  He is a two-dimensional character in a predetermined bit of theater, written and directed by the Divine Author.  He, himSelf, thus, being wholly unnatural with respect to God’s perfect and perfectly moral reality, doesn’t actually exist at all.

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In order to truly love—that is, in the way that Christians cannot—humanity must accept its own innate natural worth, and reject the satanic notion of innate moral failure.  This is the difference between Self-love and Self-sacrifice (or Self-loathing)…and yes, these are mutually exclusive concepts.  The former always acts in love whilst the latter never does. The former always saves, the latter always murders.

END

You Pay for the Protection of Political Correctness with your Life (PART 3)

The United States Constitution declares, under penalty of punishment via the most powerful and one of the most violent political ruling classes in the history of the world, that ALL citizens be granted the right of equal opportunity under the Law.  There is no LEGAL sanction in this entire nation given to anyone who wishes to marginalize, disadvantage, discriminate against, oppress, exploit, enslave, or annihilate another person when it comes to political representation, life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness.  No public university, business, bureau, department, or institution of any kind can disadvantage anyone; they cannot limit the ability of anyone to pursue their own desires and ambitions under the Law.  In addition, I submit that only the insane and/or the self-loathing private proprietor would discriminate in the practices of employee-hiring or customer service on the basis of some group identifier like race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, etc..  When it comes to private interpersonal value exchange, I can think of no typical collective attribute which can amount to any rational decrease in benefit.

But the Constitution assumes an Individualist metaphysic (albeit insufficiently by virtue of the fact that it legitimizes government, which is necessarily collectivist at root), and THAT, if one’s metaphysic is Collectivist, makes it entirely useless when it comes to guaranteeing “true equality”.  Therefore, because Individualism means that everyone gets to play the game, and everyone starts at the same place and with the same number of cards.  Collectivism means that the governement PUTS everyone in the same place and GIVES everyone the same number of cards…and it further means that that IS the game, period.  Because there can be no difference in outcome for any of the players, there IS NO game. There is nothing to do at all. Everyone STARTS at the place the government wants them to end, so there is nowhere else to go.  For the individual, this kind of existence is the equivalent of hell.

So, for all intents and purposes, the place everyone under collectivist ideology begins and ends is the grave, and the number of cards everyone eventually collects in the game is exactly zero.  Because eventually the ruling classes run out of people to rob.  Steal from the producers long enough, and they are simply unable to sustain production.  It is the elementary logic of cause and effect.

Collective/Collectivist “equality” has nothing to do with asserting the notion of all individuals possessing the very same root moral existential value, but rather has everything to do with forcing all individuals to submit themselves to the Collective Ideal, where the foundational existential frame of reference for humanity is not the Individual (i.e. One’s Self), but the Group.  Those deemed antithetical to the Ideal because they do not and/or cannot possess the necessary group characteristic (e.g. race, political party affiliation, socio-economic class, religion, nationality, etc.) are scapegoated as the root of all that is evil, by nature, and the bane of and stumbling block to the Collectivist Utopia (for example, the bourgeoise in Marxist ideology is the scourge of the Working Class) and therefore are oppressed, exploited, and murdered.

The ideology of Political Correctness (PC) claims in essence to provide socioecopolitical protection for “minority” groups (i.e. the “disadvantaged”; the “marginalized”; the “underrepresented”) against the “majority” —and in the case of the U.S., “majority” means straight white males, whose oppressive nature as a class has compelled them to create a rival Collective Ideal (e.g. the Patriarchy), which represents an existential threat to these “minority” groups.  PC does not claim protection for the individual, fundamentally, because the needs of the individual are not considered…because the individual HIMSELF is not considered.  Political Correctness by logical necessity assumes a collectivist metaphysic.  It doesn’t care about the Indiviudal because there is, at root, no such thing.  There are only rival socioecopolitical classes, period.  To consider the Individual is to contradict Political Correctness at its very foundation.  According to PC, there is no such thing as a “minority” individual …there is either the “truth” of the COLLECTIVE minority, or the lie of the Individual. A black individual, according to PC metaphysics, is a contradiction in terms.

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Remembering what I said in part one of this three-part article, what happens to individuals when they are stripped of their individual identity and collectivized is that they are destroyed.  Group identity does not protect indivuals from the destruction they shall reap under Collectivist metaphysics.  Therefore, PC ideology is not a hedge against ANY ONE’S exploitation, exploitation being the corollary to destruction.  Being black will not save you from the inherent authoritarian violence necessarily to be manifest by an organization like Black Lives Matter should this group ever acquire a monopoly or a large percentage of political power; just as being a member of the working class did not protect Soviet workers from Stalin’s fire squads and Siberian gulags; just as being a Cuban in Fidel Castro’s Marxist-Nationalist revolution did not serve as incentive enough to dissuade thousands of Cuban’s from to sailing to Florida on what amounted to bits of floating garbage and random scraps of driftwood.

It isn’t YOU, the Person, that the Collectivist ruling class—which exists as the physical and practical incarnation of the Ideal in order to wield its Authority to compel obedience—cares about, no matter what you are told in the propoganda and bromide which passes for purpose amongst the socialists in our midst.  It’s the Ideal…that is, the Abstraction—the fantasy of group-think philosophy—which matters.  It is the notion of Collective Perfection which exists only and ever in the transcendent ether of a “reality” beyond the Individaul…beyond YOU qua YOU.  What this means in practical reality is that it is ONLY the ruling class which profits from Collectivism (and this only temporarily, until the experiment inevitably collapses under the weight of its own rational and moral bankruptcy).  And this is because the Ideal has no relevance nor meaning absent those who assume the LEGAL right (those espousing the PC Ideal are always statists at root) to compel humanity—to sacrifice it to the Ideal (i.e. themselves).   An Ideal with no rulers is null and void in any empirical and relevant aspect.  It is a law with no law enforcement…a self-contradiction, self-nullifying, irrelevant, pointless clanging of cymbals.  Noise, nothing more.  And so the Authority—the rulling class—IS, for all relevant purposes, the Ideal, itself.  And the IDEAL is all that matters.  Not you; not me, no matter who we are, where we come from, what we think, or what we look like.

So to all of you who laud the strengthening storm of Political Correctness and its evil twin sister, Social Justice, because you believe that it will usher in your long-awaited political and social and economic salvation, with commandeered wealth and a nexus of succor and self-aggrandizing satisfaction…

I laught at you.  I pray for you.

END

You Don’t Have Free Speech and Never Did

ALL governments, no matter the form, and without exception, depend upon the metaphysical presumption that the Individual is a function of the Group, not the other way around.  The Collective, being at root an IDEAL (the People, the Nation, the Race, the Class (e.g. the Workers), the Kingdom, the Church, the Tribe) demands that the Individuals within that group be defined fundamentally according to Group Identity.  And THAT definition naturally and necessarily cannot be determined by the Individual, who, in his SINGULAR metaphysical frame of reference (one’s Individual sense of Self…the reason we all use the pronoun “I”) has no root existential context for the Group.  Thus, a Ruling Class of political elites are put in charge of the Individual, and are tasked with being the incarnate representation of the Ideal and then using a codified system of ethics, known as Law, to compel Individuals into their group identity by force.  Absent this Authoritative Force, there is no Law, and without the Law there is no Collective Ideal which can be practically realized.  And unless the Collective Ideal be realized, it is no longer an Ideal at all.  In other words, Law, if non-compulsory—if optional—is not Law at all.  If the Indiviudal can CHOOSE to act in accordance with the collective Ideal, then clearly the Individual precedes the Collective in the metaphysical context.  The Individual who is free to choose whether or not he acts in accordance with group ethics is not defined by the group, and thus has no foundational collective identity, which means he cannot be beholden to a Collective Ideal…he has no Authority over him to compel him.  And an Individual who cannot be compelled by force into obeying an ethic meant to promote the Collective Ideal is an Individual who is not governed.

To be governed is, at root, to be controlled, you see.  The Individual who is in control of himself then is not governed.  Which means government is fundamentally unnecessary, and cannnot exist, because there can be no way to quantify or even qualify its efficacy in a context where it has no Authority to compel by force.

Based the above, I submit three things are certain:

  1. Government is necessarily Collectivist, making the Group the head of the Individual, metaphysically, which means that the Group forms the basis for the interpretation of reality when government is established.
  2. Government shall and must use force to compel Individuals into collective behavior, and this by its Authority to represent the Collective Ideal as its practical incarnation.
  3. Indiviudal freedom is impossible within the Collectivist Metaphysical paradigm of Goverenment/Authority/Law.  The ethics of LEGALITY demanded by the Collectivist metaphysics of Governemnt preclude CHOICE as the means by which ethics are realized. Obedience is the only means by which the Law can be satisfied.  To claim that the individual is free to choose to accept and adhere to that (the Law) which he is obligated under threat of punishment, all the way unto death, at the hands of the ruling classes, is a contradiction of reason and logic.  Choice qua choice…the ability of the Indivudal alone to determine his own outcomes at a fundamental level, from the place of a singular “I”, contradicts the very philosophical foundations of Government, and this categorically so.

Often, in response to the assertion that all Governments are fundamentally tyrannical because all Governments exist for the sole purpose of compelling the Individual into a Collective Ideal, people will bring up “free elections”. Unfortunately, the idea of citizens deciding who will represent them in Government is a thin veneer of liberty, but contains no real substance beyond the surface. I would think this obvious based on the clear contradiction imbedded in the idea:

We freely select those who shall rule us.

First, who is “We”, pale face? “We”, when we are speaking of how reality shall be organized (sociopolitical context) is a Collectivist term, and specifically rejects the idea of the Individual at the metaphysical root. Second, to vote upon which manifestation of Governing Authority one will obey is merely the illusion of choice.  True choice is not the ability to decide whether one will accept A or B, but whether he will accept A or NOT A, and B or NOT B.  In other words, true choice is that in which the indivudal is not obligated to make a choice at all, so to speak.  Even under “free” democracies, those who refuse to choose (to vote) are nevertheless obligated, by the force of Government, to obey the outcome of the vote.  This is not freedom of choice, but slavery to the State.  The faces of the State may change, but its Authority to compel individuals by violence is constant.

The illusion of choice is the illusion of freedom.  There is no freedom which can exist under the auspices of the Absolute Authority of Government, which exists ENIRELY as a function of Collectivist Metaphysics and which therefore defines Ethics in terms of Legality, not Morality (the Individaul Ethic); and Legality is entirely about FORCE, not Choice…about obedience to the Collectivist Ideal, which is practically manifest as obedience to the Ruling Political Elite.  And that which is entirely about Force cannot, by definition, have anything to do with Freedom.  All the Individual does within the context of a society ruled by the State is a function of not his freedom to choose, but of what the Government ALLOWS him to do.  The Government owns the Individual because it has the power and the purpose to define him according to the Collective Ideal, which means, necessarily and effectively, to eradicate Individuality qua Individuality entirely in favor of the metaphysics of Collectivism.

*

It has been shown that all Empires rise and fall in the same way and in approximately the same amount of time, regardless of their political structure (autocracy, democracy, monarchy, etc.).  This, I submit, is because of the inherent impossibility of combining the false reality of a Collectivist Ideal, practically represented by the State, with the rational reality of the Individual and Individualist metaphysics.  Even here in the United States, which is currently undergoing its own tragic and frankly embarrassing undulations of late-state empire behavior, is not immune from the rational cause and effect of root metaphyscial assumptions leading to inevitable social conclusions.  Which is egg on the faces of all who have lauded the uniqueness of America’s Enlightenment-influenced ideals, and the unshakable moral integrity of its founding documents.  For all of its appeals to the enlightened principles of the Rights of Man, the United States is yet again proving that when we define man collectively, society inevitably collapses.  And I must admit that of all the Empires I have studied, the fall of America is perhaps the most sickly-sentimental, the most self-loathing, and the most cliche…it’s a shameful wad of the worst and most embarrassing aspects of empire decline: gushing feminine sentimentality (every country song on the radio for example and every commercial on TV), pining for “old main street” traditions and in-your-face-flag-waving, insatiable consumerism and life-by-debt, the rampant acceptance of rank idiocy into the public discourse (e.g. daytime talk shows), immigration as a crutch for the rich and the ruling classes, and the plain old boring corruption of the selective application of Law for personal gain…and so on and so forth. And for those of you not convinced that we in the U.S. are not in the least bit unique and are merely yet another Collectivist Ideal on the verge of inevitable collapse, ask yourselves why the U.S. Constitution begins with “We the People…”, as opposed to “We the Persons…”.

It’s because Persons don’t need government.  PERSONS choose; People are ruled.

*

The following is the philosophical process of collectivism—based upon its metaphysical premise—from Epistemology to Politics; and it illustrates why, under government, you do not have freedom of speech (or any other freedom for that matter) and never did.

(an) Idea = (a) Truth (or a proposed Truth); (a) Truth = (an) Ethic; (an) Ethic = (an) Action; (an) Action = Violence (fundametally); Violence = Coercion; Coercion = Legality; Legality = (the) State

I know that this is a bit abstruse. Please bear with me.

From this we can see that ALL ideas are the purview of the ruling class. ANY idea from and by an individual thus is subject to the Authority of the State…because ideas equal actions, and these actions MUST at root serve the Collectivist Ideal; and since the realization of that Ideal is dependent upon Law, and Law is FORCE, all ideas—under the auspices of the Collectivist Ideal which in that reality DRIVE IDEAS—imply force.  And force belongs to the State.

Okay…still abstruse.

Keep bearing.

To allow the Individual to own his ideas, beyond the Law and thus beyond the coercive power of the State, is to invite a challenge to Authority, at the metaphysical level—Individualism—which the government by its nature cannot accept…ever.  To claim one’s speech is free is to claim that the Individual has a right to his ideas INDEPENDENT OF THE COLLECTIVE…that he has ownership, utterly, over his own mind, which is entirely an affirmation of INDIVIDUALIST metaphysics.

A Collectivist Authority cannot recognize an Individual’s ideas, and therefore it cannot accept them, and therefore it cannot accept the Individual speech which expresses those ideas.  It can only recognize ideas which affirm the reality of the COLLECTIVE IDEAL…which doesn’t fundamentally recognize the EXISTENCE of the Individual qua the Individual. It does not recognize the legitimacy of ANYTHING about the Individual—his thoughts or anything else.  Your “free speech” as far as the Collective reality of the Collectivist Ideal is concerned, is, like everything else, something the Government ALLOWS. And what is allowed is not, in itself, free.  It is enslaved.

*

The Collectivist Ideal is metaphysically the ROOT of reality itself, and requires a concentrated, centralized, Authoritative Force (the State) to compel Individuals into that reality.  ALL epistemology (proposed truth; ideas and speech) necessarily implies force as the means by which the Ideal will be served and become efficacious and practical in reality.  All ideas then, from the point of view of Government, can occupy one of only two possible categories:

  1. Ideas which affirm the State (Government)
  2. Ideas which threaten the power of the State (Government) and seek to replace it with a different version of Centralized Force (new Laws).

And when I say all ideas I mean ALL…from your views on heady subjects like term limits and abortion to what you want from breakfast.  All ideas, when viewed from the position of the Authority which exists soley and utterly to make the Collectvist Ideal THE standard of reality, can fundamentally ONLY mean affirmation or denial.  Period.  Full stop.  The State cannot recognize ANY OTHER MEANING.  Because all other meanings imply individual thought.  What YOU want for breakfast, from the point of view of the COLLECTIVIST AUTHORITY, has nothing whatsoever to do with YOU.  It has ONLY to do with whether or not your idea—in this case, your breakfast selection—represents a challenge to (its) power and to Collectivist reality or not.  It may sound absurd, and on some level absurd it may be, but when the categorical suppression of the Individual metaphysic is the sum and substance of Authoritative Power, it is impossible for ANY idea to mean, fundamentally, anything else.  Impossible.  All that matters is control.  Everything about the State is about control.  THAT’S what the State is.  Governement IS Force.  The two are unavoidably corollary.  There isn’t one without the other.  And thus, there isn’t any meaning to ANY idea that isn’t fundamentally about control.

And this is why speech is not, cannot, and never will be free within the context of Government, its Authority, and its Law.  All speech, like all actions and all thoughts and all ideas, is purely a function of what the State will allow.  And to do only what you are allowed to do means that fundamentally what you want to do or think or SAY is as far from free as east is from west.

END

 

 

Douglas Murray and Jordan Peterson: The terrible and fascinating car crash of IQ and moral worth

I know in my last article I said would deal with the difference between mystery, paradox, and contradiction.  But alas, I must detour. Because yesterday I stumbled upon a video that I simply must address.  Thank you for your forbearance.

It was a discussion between Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray, two of arguably the greatest libertarian (I mean ideologically, not politically) social commentators of our time.  (If you don’t know who they are, just look them up on YouTube…you’ll find as much information as you want.) They were discussing, adroitly, as is expected, a myriad of things, among which was the controversy of Intelligence Quotient (IQ) and race.  Unsurprisingly, the notion of some races performing better on IQ tests than others came up, and with that, the concern that this information may cause some manner of genetic superiority collectivism to rear its ugly head and begin to categorize human worth based on quantifications of intelligence. That this method of collectivizing humanity is so particularly scandalous seems at first surprising, given that humanity has been collectivizing itself, to disastrous moral effect, for thousands of years, based upon almost any reason at all.  Since any group characteristic can be and has been used to classify humanity into superior and inferior classes and castes since time immemorial, why is this so particularly shocking to heady thinkers like Murray and Peterson?

Well, the reason is pretty straightforward, and you’ve probably already figured it out.  You see, intelligence is a scientifically proven and statistically verified means of predicting future life success, even correcting for race, language, social context, socioeconomic status, and any other factor you can think of.  It has been used since the early 20th century and has never failed, as a general instrument of measure, to gauge intelligence and then empirically verify the results through objective evaluations of life performance.  Put simply, IQ tests are overwhelmingly effective at predicting life success (where “success” is defined according to socioeconomic scales in a given sociopolitical context), no matter who is being tested or where or when.  Okay, not so controversial…so far so good.  But here is where intellectuals and moral men like Peterson and Murray get the vapors, and you saw this coming a mile away.

Which groups, pray tell, score highest on IQ tests?  Asians, Jews, and Whites.  Now, in this day age of rampant, insatiable, and insidious social Marxism in the West, the first two aren’t much of a problem.  But the last one…the Whites…well, to say that Whites are more intellegent than Browns is like saying the Devil is more powerful than God.  The argument that “Jews and Asians are smarter that’s Whites” is irrelevant to the rabid masses of Marxist ideologues rampaging through the West with their bike-locks-turned-cudgels and their Malotov cocktails, both literally and figuratively.  The fact that a white person is more intelligent than a brown person on average is the problem, and is a fact that must be denied, and is just one more example of Western “institutional racism” and the white man’s inherent existential proclivity towards deception and manipulation and of course his endemic natural evil; and just one more reason white people need to be destroyed en masse. And make no mistake, to marginalize any group by claiming an inherent existential moral deficiency, which is exactly what the left is doing with whites, is to declare the need to wipe them out.  Regardless of what anyone tells you, if you concede the root existential moral failure of a group of people, the only rational means of dealing with them to murder them.  If the white man is evil because he is white, which is a function of nothing more than his birth, then he has no right to live.  If the existence of the white man means that he is inexorably White at his very natural root, and White is evil, then the white man has no right to exist, period.  The logic is clear, it is simple, and it is utterly consistent if we concede the metaphysical premise that Whitness = inherent moral depravity.

Now, as I said, the left explains the discrepancy of IQ between whites and browns on institutional racism, social manipulation, and outright perfidy and mendaciousness on the part of the western “White Patriarchy”, due to the natural depravity of white people, who are born this way.  But see, Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray know that this is not the case.  At the same time, the empirical and statistical evidence cannot be ignored.  The scientific fact is that, on the whole, white people are more intelligent than brown people.  And because it is a fact, there is some concern amongst both Peterson and Murray, that this information will be used by some right-wing ideologues to declare whites a superior class, and, necessarily, to seek to demonize and politically (and eventually, ACTUALLY) eliminate the inferior classes.  Because, well…let’s be honest.  It’s not like it hasn’t happened before.

As a hedge against this kind of argument, Peterson quickly, and rightly—for morality obliges him—points out the fact that the level of one’s intelligence does not determine the level of his moral worth.  And “moral worth” means the value of an individual’s life qua life…of their root existence.  And with that, all the controversy dissolves into mist, right?  It seems logical, after all.  Only a fool would deny such an obvious assertion.  How much your brain can do has no bearing how good you are as a person.  And…well, this is true.  I’ve no problem asserting that as an axiom.

But here is where it gets messy, and here is where I DO have a problem with the assertion.

Both Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray know that this is true, but they do not know WHY it is true.  And this is where it gets so, so interesting to me.  Because there is nothing more fun and fascinating than watching men who are geniuses in their fields venture into intellectual areas where they are so very clearly NOT geniuses.  Whilst there, they make some observations, and then never, ever address the gaping rational errors behind their ideas.  They talke about IQ and morality, utter an axiom, and then never address the problem of their premises not actually leading to the conclusion that the axiom is in fact axiomatic.  And you can hear the uncertainly in their voices…the cold, sharp claws of that thing digging into their brains telling them that no, it is not actually resolved at all.  That they haven’t any idea how to handle this.  And why?  Why?  They don’t know…it’s a big blank space.  Nothing is there…but is that because nothing is there, or something is there and they just can’t see it?  The axiom is clear:  Intellgence doesn’t define your moral worth as a person.  This is so intuitively true.  And it IS true….so why the hesitation?  Why is there no satisfaction in asserting something so true?

I will tell you why:

Peterson and Murray’s declaration of the truth that intelligence is exclusive of moral worth flat out contradicts their assertion that IQ is, in fact, an objective measure of objective outcomes. Because you cannot have it both ways.  You cannot divorce intelligence from morality AND claim that intelligence has objective VALUE.  Because value is, itself, at root, a function of morality…it is a matter of ethical truth, not epistemological truth.  To claim that something is objectively useful to reality, in some context or another, like, for example, the prediction of one’s socioeconomic performance via intelligence levels, is, in fact, a claim of objective moral worth.  In other words, to say that intelligence is objectively useful to man is to imply that it has value.  And value judgements—the degree to which something is good or bad, which can also be rendered as “useful or degrading”; “helpful or harmful”—are judgements at root of morality (meaning, they fall into the philosophical category of ethics, which deals with the distinction between what is good and what is not).  If high levels of intelligence are objectively useful to objective success then high intelligence must be said to be objectively GOOD.  Which in turn must mean that low intelligence is objectively BAD.  And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the rub.  You cannot divorce the “OBJECTIVE usefulness” of high intelligence from the “OBJECTIVE morality” of high intelligence.  The fact that having high intelligence produces “objectively” good outcomes for people and societies means that the people who possess high intelligence must be morally superior to those who possess low intelligence. If, of course, you accept the premise that the “success” intelligence predicts is objective. Which I promise you Murray and Peterson do.

And THAT is the nagging, gnawing thing in their brains which torments them.  They know, somewhere inside, that this must be the case (that intelligence = moral value) but the abomination of such an idea offends, and rightly so, their sensibilities as good and honest and kind and empathetic men, which they clearly are.  They know there’s a monster in the woods, but they have never seen him, so can they be so sure?

The answer is: Yes they can.  But I promise you that they will not like the reason.  They will very likely not and never accept the reason…so it goes.

The truth, which reconciles the moral dilemma, is that the “life success” which intelligence predicts is, in fact, not objective at all.  And this means that intelligence is nothing more than a character trait, which, like skin color or the size of one’s nose, may or may not have any meaning or value to the individual, his life, or reality.  Intelligence, you see, being divorced from morality, which it must be in order to avoid the  very real ethical dilemma Peterson and Murray discuss (valuing an individual according to his intelligence) doesn’t really have anything to do with knowledge, and I mean in the philosophically primary sense.  Because the knowledge of what IS is inexorably bound to the knowledge of what is GOOD; and furthermore the knowledge of what IS and is GOOD is only relevant and therefore objectively meaningful if it drives behavior.  Since IQ does not and cannot incorporate the relevant knowledge of objective truth corollary to objective moral truth BY also incorporating actual observed objective moral behavior, then intelligence indeed has NOTHING to do with one’s moral value. This being the case, intelligence is not the equivalent of what we might call “wisdom”.  And wisdom is where the Truth is.  Wisdom is knowledge, and the knowledge of what IS includes the knowledge of what IS GOOD, and is made manifest—made REAL—by one’s actions.  Wisdom is really all that matters when it comes to OBJECTIVE success, I submit.  And by that I mean, success absolutely, existentially, forever and ever.

See…I told you they wouldn’t like the answer.  In fact, I’m willing to bet that you don’t like it either. Which one am I?  A fool?  Deluded?  Possibly both?  Lol…I take no offense, dear reader.  Correct me where I stray, and if you cannot, then accept it.  Those are your only two rational choices

Here is my point in summary:

“Intelligence has nothing to do with one’s moral worth” is the assertion made my Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray, and it is a correct assertion.  What this means is that intelligence doesn’t have anything to do with morality, in general, at all. Intelligence, in other words, having nothing to do with man’s moral value, cannot itself have any moral value, because MAN provides the only rational reference for morality.  MAN decides the value of intelligence, not the other way around.

What DOES have something to do with man’s moral value, and incorporates morality, itself, in general, is knowledge of the Truth, or Wisdom. Because wisdom is the understanding of Truth and it’s corollary, Good, and is made REAL and meaningful through man’s behavior.  How do we know whether or not a man has moral worth, or to what degree it is?  Watch his actions and gauge them against objective morality…objective morality being that which references the individual, and thus does not violate his sanctity.  Does not kill him, steal from him, lie to him, abuse or threaten him.

Intelligence then becomes a subjective predictor of success, which makes the success which it predicts necessarily subjective also.  In such a case we are forced to consider intelligence, again having nothing to do with morality, as little more than a character trait which may or may not have any actual value, depending on the individual in question.  It may have value, if one’s definition of his success is that which intelligence can predict, but OBJECTIVE success—that which is manifest by the implementation of wisdom—is not a function of intelligence.

END

 

You Want to Know the Real Problem of Evil? You Got It.

Now that we have—by illustrating the rank contradictions which make up its substrata of rationale—dispensed with the theological and logical fallacy of the “Problem of Evil” as presumed by Christian orthodoxy, we can talk about the real problem of evil.

But what do we mean by “evil”?  Well, first, we need a reference.  That is, in order to call something moral or immoral we must reference it to that which can rationally arbitrate ethical value.  Without such a reference, it’s impossible to ascribe a moral label.  So, what’s the reference? The only reference which is rationally consistent is the Individual. Now, please note that in this article I am not going to explicate ethics in detail at the philosophical primary level. You can find that elsewhere on this blog.

I thus define evil this way:

The willful action of one individual which violates another.

Think Old Testament.  Think Ten Commandments.  Stealing, hurting, killing, lying to yourself or others.

Now, there is a subsection of ethics which deals with “acts of nature”, so to speak.  Those incidents where the innocent are subjected to torment, neglect, and death that have nothing to do with the willful acts of other human beings.  Like natural disasters, accidents of poor judgment (e.g. getting lost in the wilderness at night and falling down a steep ravine), or even something like a bridge collapsing.  We can argue that these things are technically violations of human life, and thus may be described as evil.  But I don’t think they fall under the category of a “problem of evil”, unless you consider God the fundamental controller of everything and thus must implicate Him in some way.  But as I explained in my previous article on the subject, this is not really a problem, because it is not actually paradoxical. It’s a contradiction and thus a lie.  So, when we are talking evil, we’ll keep it simple…basic rational ethics a la the Ten Commandments.  Kiling, lying, stealing, and all their various forms (bullying, psychological abuse, manipulation or fraud, etc.). That’s basic rational ethics, and it need not be complicated.  What is complicated is dismantling the fraudulent ethics of irrational philosophies and other various hijacking of reason.  But true ethics is simple, and I would argue, innately understood by all of us as a function of our nature.  This innate understanding of goodness is corrupted by bad philosophies, and specifically bad metaphysics, not unlike those which underwrite governments.  All of them.  Which leads us to the main thesis of this article.

*

Why do people do evil?

Who are the greatest and most prolific and persistent culprits?

The answers to these questions most likely will surprise you, and I can tell you right now that the rest of this article won’t win me any friends, and will likely lose me some. Because the answer to the second question is: you.  And me, in the past.  And the why is this: because we think evil is good.

I must step carefully around this prickly subject. I am not trying to shame anyone.  I am not condemning you to fire and brimstone.  I am not ultimately imprecating the character of friends and family, or even of humanity in general.  I am not saying you ARE evil, because I know that that simply isn’t true.  This is an admonishment to a new thinking, not a condemnation of your soul.  I am aiming to help people to re-evaluate their root assumptions about he nature of man and reality, and to realize that those assumptions are the difference between our lives contributing, on the whole, to sublime morality or the utter abasement of God and the world.  Because no matter how good and reasonable and true and honorable we think we are, our root assumptions—and we all have them—define, ultimately and foundationally, our moral contribution to reality.  And that contribution is either evil or it is good, period.  The question begged, then, is this:  Can a person with evil assumptions who truly believes that these assumptions are good ultimately do good with their life?

I guess I should explain what I mean about “evil assumptions”.  What I mean is assumptions about the nature of man and his relationship to realty which nullifies man’s will, and demands him inadequate, by dint of no less than his very own birth, to existence, itself.  The philosophies in which this is done are varied and copious, and without any rival anywhere in the world I submit, but at root they all share the same theme:  Man is fundamentally controlled by some determinative force outside of himself, be it God, or natural law, or mathematics, or his own “sin nature”, or the Unknown, or evolution, or all of the above, and therefore his will—his sentience and agency—is, at the very foundation of his existential make-up, fraudulent.  Will is an illusion; choice is determined and thus a lie.  Man is incapable of being himself qua himself—there is no such thing.  And thus, for his own good, and to ensure his own real and true existence, his will must be censured, and he forced into “goodness”.  He must be forced to thrive because he cannot do it on his own.  Man speaks as if he is an individual, but this is a function of a root existential error, and his individuality is an illusion at best.  His reality is that he is collectively driven by a single Cause (God, Nature, some other Force), and thus his false sense of self must be oppressed so that his true self—his determined and collective self—can prosper.  He must be forced to thrive—forced into his proper collectivist role—because he simply cannot do it on his own.

*

People committing rank atrocities against their fellow man are easy to spot when the definition of evil is rational.  It is hard for the liar, or thief, or murderer to hide when the ethical context is clear.  They stick out like a dead fly in a glass of milk.  And thus, I don’t consider them, and whatever pathology drives them, be it physiological or behavioral or genetic or whatever, to be the real root of the problem of evil.  The liar lies, the killer kills, and the thief steals.  This is clear.  The real problem evil—of evil which is endemic and pervasive—my friends, is not the evil person, but rather the good one.  That is, real evil is found in the majority…the masses who wish to do good, to save and promote fellow man, but do so from a false assumption. The assumption is this: The only way to get men to behave morally is ultimately to grant a small group of people (or a single person) the power to compel human behavior by violence.

I’m talking, in essence, about government. And the fact that after thousands of years of state-sponsored mass murder, oppression, exploitation, slavery, torture, economic regression, and nepotism, we all still accept that the most moral form of humanity is that in which it is governed.  We accept that by eradicating morality, which destroys choice by forced compliance to legality, which is an entirely different ethic altogether, goodness can be brought about in the world.

It can’t.  It hasn’t.  It won’t.

What is the assumption which guides our moral code, almost to a person?  It is found in the answer to the question: Why government?  The answer is always the same, though in various semantic molds:  Without government, man is doomed.  Left to himself, man’s base natural instincts to oppression, exploitation, and murder will erupt and the earth will be a cauldron of misery…a hell, itself.  That man’s very inherent and natural ability to choose his own actions cannot be trusted.  And choice, dear readers, is the root of what makes a human being a human being.  Absent choice, there is no individual.  And thus, this concession to the necessity of government implies that man IS EVIL, ITSELF.  And that’s why government. That’s why human will must be replaced by obedience to law.

Of course, how the political elite get a pass on their own mendacity and natural depravity is a question that is alway punted into the cosmic abyss of grand Mystery.  The fact is, we are told, that our sense of One Self—of “I”—is by nature false, and our choice thus is the vehicle for our own destruction.  And therefore we must be ruled.  It is the only way to save us.  We must have ourselves forcefully denied so that humanity can survive.

And that is REAL evil.  That idea…right there.

So you shall never get to experience life out from under the unblinking eye of Authority, no matter how benevolent or special or God-ordained that authority is claimed to be.  The Bill of Rights, Magna Carta, Pax Romana…it’s force, force, force.  It’s the State, and it means law, and law is the eradication of choice by its nature, and this means the nullification of morality, which means that there is no longer any  consequence for actual evil…because evil becomes not that which violates the individual—YOU or ME—but which violates Law.  Because YOU and ME are a lie, we are told and believe.  So, you will never know what it means to be you, ultimately.  You will never know the freedom of You qua You.  You must always have an overlord, and a cage in which to put you, even though its borders be the size of a continent.  You may have a shadow of freedom, but you will never have it in the flesh.  You will never get to be the real You.  The Self is dead at birth.

And now, right now, you’re telling yourself that I’m a fool…a nut, a radical, a denier of reality, lost, or angry, or irrational, or all of it.  Perhaps you should no longer associate with me, you’re thinking. Perhaps you will unfriend me on Facebook…or perhaps you already have.  I’m a bad influence, a reprobate, a rejector of clear truth.  An arguer, a rebel, a non-compromiser, a denier of God’s sovereignty, a rejector of the empirical, unenlightened, unsaved, a know-it-all, arrogant, and without faith.

Of course we need government, you’re thinking.  Of course we can’t just let people do whatever they want!  That’s complete madness! The death of us all! Idiotic!

Nothing I can say will change your mind. Nothing I can do will cause you to question. I can show you the graves of the millions that government has slaughtered; the starving children ravaged by polical despots who are called the “savior of the people”, the “dear leader”, the “Fuhrer”.  I can show you internment camps and gas chambers and killing fields and nuclear craters and whole cities on fire and severed heads on poles on castle walls and bodies littering the colosseums and the crucifixion of Christ, and all of it a government program, and yet you shall reject the idea that government, and in particular its philosophical roots, might just be the source of the horror. No, in your eyes, I am forever the fool.

And that, my friends…is the problem of evil.

 

 

The Point of Law is to Eradicate Moral Consequence, Not Enforce it (PART THREE)

In the world today, collectivist metaphysics are a philosophical juggernaut, with virtually every school of thought, field of study, and religion in the world, including and perhaps especially the “hard sciences”, conceding these metaphysics as a priori, whether they are consciously aware of it or not.  Which, they usually are not because…well, who needs philosophy when you’ve got math, right?  Numbers beat reason every time.

Hmmm.  To that I’d say: numbers are units of infinity, nothing more.  So be careful.  It’s easy to replace truth with abstraction when the abstraction you’re working with is designed to be rendered an infinite number of ways.  Give me infinity to work with, and I can come up with anything…by definition.  And thus, for mathematics to be in any way reasonable and relevant on the level of arrant and object reality, we must hem them in by rational consistency.  That is, by truth. That is, by understanding what is rationally possible and what is not, and from this, what is actually good and what is actually not.  And truth is a function of philosophy.  Period.

Anyway…

By the collectivist metaphysical premises which underly practically all subjects it seems, and along with these subjects society at large, the denizens of society seek to eradicate the “illegitimate” and “invalid” moral consequences of an “illegitimate” ethic.  Which is to say, of morality, as opposed to legality.  And thus the metaphysic in which this ethic is rooted, the Individual (I, the Self) is marked for death, figuratively unto literally, by “the people” demanding that the government nullify moral consequence through the power of Law, which government wields alone, as the One, True Authority.

To put it much more bluntly, people who have conceded the collectivist ideals of all the “truths” upon which a collectivist society is based will appeal to the State to use its giant hammer of coercive monopolistic brut force to pound into a bloody mash the individual freedoms of everyone in response to the unwanted moral consequences brought about by the choices of the evil or irresponsible.  In a society ruled by Law, and not morality, everyone is a sinner.  Everyone is guilty for the sins of everyone else.  And this is because under Law, there are no individuals, and this due to the collectivist metaphysics which imply legal ethics.  Man as an individual is insufficient—morally, intellectually, existentially—and thus the failure of some men (criminals) is merely the reflection of the failure of all men; so how can the Law treat those who commit no crime as innocent?  All individuals are merely latent criminals, which is why the Law is declared necessary in the first place.  The innocents therefore are punished for the crimes of the guilty, and this is how we think justice is done and how humanity is protected.  By using the State to destroy the distinction between the good and the evil, the innocent and the guilty, the responsible and the deadbeat, the giver and the taker, the host and the parasite, we wreck the individual at the point of his very metaphyscial reality, and by this we think we can eliminate his curse—his natural ethical failure, due to the choices he makes as an individual.  We take guns away from the non-violent; fossil fuels away from good stewards; money away from the generous; tobacco and other “vices” away from the moderate; and force licenses to ply trades upon the honest and compassionate; and so on.  We do this thinking we are protecting the innocent public, while all we are really doing is punishing the innocent for being individuals.

It need not be said that this never, ever works in the long run.  Appeals to the Law as a panacea for social ills merely enlarges the State, which like a gravity well draws to it every sadist, narcissist, and greed-monger who has the means and intelligence to get there, and heaps exponential misery upon the nation, compounding the very moral atrocities it claims to alleviate.  Without a shred of irony this farce continues, day in and day out, election cycle after election cycle, and no one seems to notice.  It’s shocking.

To remediate unwanted moral consequences, we, the lemmings of collectivist ideology, appeal to government violence—the use of state force to compel obedience through death and threats of death—to fix and prevent the fallout of poor moral choices…to clean up the messes left by individuals who have committed specific immoral acts.  Instead of encouraging better choices through a saturation of society with rational philosophy, we, without a hint of irony, appeal to the monumentally immoral act of using violence to force the innocent to comply with legal regulations which are deemed a collective necessity due to the immoral actions of some. In short, we use the law to burden the innocent for the crimes of the guilty.  This is not only irrational, it is an object evil.

As I have said, this will never work because to apply legal solutions to moral problems denies the real and root truth of the individual.  The individual is truth, the collective is a lie, metaphysically speaking.  Which means, when we are talking about the fundamentals of human existence, the individual is that from which reality flows.

The Law seeks to regulate the choice out of reality by using regulation to compel obedience, which is the antipode of choice with respect to root ethics.  But choice is actual reality, because the individual, not the collective, is what is real.  The individual is concrete; the collective, abstract.  To attempt to subordinate the concrete to the abstract is at best hope over reason.  To attempt to solve ethical problems by destroying that by which ethics has any meaning in the first place—namely, the individual—is the mere substitution of soundness for madness.  And this only ever multiplies and compounds unwanted ethical consequences.  It sews misery among the populace, it doesn’t resolve it.  Further, the implimention of an irrational ethic like legality is, itself, patently unethical, because it is immoral.  And it shouldn’t have to be said that you cannot solve or prevent immorality by appealing to immorality.  Yet, this is precisely what the Law is.

Replacing morality with legality destroys and brings abject misery to humanity for the simple reason that collectivism is a lie by virtue of it being a metaphysical contradiction. That is, it defies reality.  And there is no power in the universe which can change reality.  This is because power is, itself, real, and therefore can only ever confirm reality.  Even if that confirmation comes in the form of a Roman cross, a guillotine, a killing field, a concentration camp, a gulag, mass starvation, or a mushroom cloud.

END PART THREE

The Point of Law is to Eradicate Moral Consequence, Not Enforce it (PART TWO)

As I stated in my last article, the bigger the State the smaller the moral consequence. To be clear, the reduction in moral consequence is more of a psychosis, rather than a manifest reality, and this due to the substitution of morality for legality in the minds and thus the practical sociology of the populace which has been incessantly indoctrinated into the collectivist metaphysical premise for thousands of years.  There is of course no actual eradication of moral consequence, because this is impossible via legality. Collectivism, you see, due to its object rational error and its rank violation of that which makes consciousness, conceptualization, agency, and all by which truth can be known and thus reality defined, experienced, and made possible, is a lie.  A fantasy.  Thus, all such “effects” of collectivism, whether they be described as positive or negative, are purely psychosis—a belief that that which cannot exists does exist, and efficaciously so.  Further, the actual destructive consequences of collectivism are not due to collectivism qua collectivism, or collectivism per se, but to the attempt to apply madness to a reality that is ipso facto utterly exclusive of the collectivist lie, and can only respond to truth, even if the truth is that society is attempting to conjure up a lie and make it true. Which is what governed societies do. And which is why they all torment the denizens of the world to some degree or another and collapse so dreadfully.

At any rate, because morality and legality are entirely different ethical systems, legality will not merely augment morality, but must necessarily replace it.  The greater the replacement of moral consequence with legal consequence, the greater the perception that moral problems—everything from crime to education to economics—are being handled.  Though this is the perception, and may perhaps be true by strict collectivist definition, the remediation and prevention of moral problems in society is only because the individual—he who exercises morality, itself…who exercises will and choice—has become more and more marginalized under Law.

The individual is antithetical to the collective ideal, which is the philosophical rationale for all societies which are ruled.  Which is to say, all societies.  That is, to governments and “the people” as a collective Ideal which the government represents as its tangible incarnation; which is to say, as It’s Authority to assert itself through violence upon individuals.  The individual, being an agent of will, is the practical manifestation of morality, whereas the government, being an agent of force, is the practical manifestation of legality.  Thus, individual moral consequence is perhaps technically mitigated by government, but only because government mitigates the individual at his very existential root.

Moral consequence is a product of one’s will, choice, and action.  The individual is existentially—by his nature, that is—in direct contrast and opposition to government, which is a product of force, compulsion, and obedience.  And therefore individuals who accept that government and law have legitimacy—or, as is so oft annoyingly equivocated, have a “legitimate role”, whatever that means…it’s double-talk, really—must necessarily accept that their own individuality is an impostor, or an illusion, or a lie, or all three, regardless of what they might say, or think, or think they think, because collectivism and government are corollary.  You do not get government without a prevailing societal acceptance of the collectivist metaphysic.  Period.  Full stop.  And if collectivism is the metaphysical standard of society, which the presence of government objectively proves, then legality must be the ethical standard.  And if legality is the ethical standard, then morality is irrelevant by definition, and thus so is the individual.

The Point of Law is to Eradicate Moral Consequence, Not Enforce it (PART ONE)

Under a legal system reigns legal ethics. Legal ethics are exclusive of moral ethics because morality has to do with choice and legality has to do with obedience. Another way we could put it, so as not to completely nullify either concept within the framework of ethics, is this: obedience drives individual will under a system of legal ethics and will drives obedience under a system of moral ethics. Because of the root mutual exclusivity of these two ethical categories, morality has fundamentally no meaning nor relevancy to or within a legal system. That is, in a society governed by a political ruling class, which we call Government, or the State, this ruling class will necessarily appeal to the Law for its legitimacy of purpose and power. It exists to make sure everyone is acting ethically. All that is necessary is to convince the masses that legality is the best way to do this. Which isn’t difficult because it seems that humanity almost universally accepts the collectivist metaphysical premise: that the individual is a product of some greater collection of parts—the tribe or the nation or the race, for example—or some outside force of nature or of the divine; that the individual, as a function of something outside of him, is, in fact, an existential illusion, or a mystery, or a lie.

Since morality has no meaning nor relevancy under the auspices of government, because government is necessarily rooted in legality, then moral consequence likewise has no meaning.  Society is organized according to legality, and this enforced by government. In a framework like this, moral consequence then can have no place in the organization protocol. Society is to be ruled, and this makes it fundamentally subject to obedience, not to the choice of individuals living out a distinct and metaphysically singular existence. The point of the State is to eradicate the consequence of moral choice in order that perfect legal order can be established and realized, and by this, the perfect ethical utopia—perfect goodness—and this as the proof of the legitimacy and efficacy of government, which really means the legitimacy and efficacy of the ruling class, and this really means the manifestation of the zenith of power, which is absolute, which is the point of collectivism.  And this is why we see, as the nations wear on in their programmed and inevitable way, from rise to certain collapse, more and more reliance upon the law for the remediation and prevention of social woes, and less and less on individual choice and responsibility.

The reason the State gets bigger, up until the point the State no longer asks what its citizens want or think, is no mystery, and yet the amount of woe and teeth gnashing and shaking of fists at the heavens at every expression of government excess and increase by those of a more conservative or libertarian political bent belies the simplicity of what should be perfectly obvious. The reason the State gets bigger is because the people want it bigger. Period. To vote for government, because of the very nature of government and because of the metaphysical and eithical presumptions one must accept in order to accept the existence of government in the first place, is to tacitly or implicitly, at best, desire government to grow; to desire the reduction of individual choice and the increase in government control. You cannot affirm government (by voting, for example) whilst simultaneously demand it contradict itself by giving you more freedom and itself less authority.  That’s like getting a cat, buying it litter and cat food and cat toys and scratching posts and calling it Felix and then decrying the fact that it’s not a dog.

So, yes, the State gets bigger because the people want it bigger. And its not hard to see why people want this, and are so tempted by government, and why it seems to win every time when it comes down to choosing how society will be organized.  People WANT to be ruled MUCH more than they want to be free. It’s obvious, its arrant, and here’s why:

The existence of the State is a hedge against moral consequence, by the very fact that it supplants morality with legality. The bigger the State then, it is eventually assumed, the smaller the moral consequence…and the smaller individual misery due to bad choices. In a legal system morality is null, and thus unwanted moral consequence should likewise be null and this should translate into people no longer feeling such consequence. And if you think people don’t know this, or don’t understand it on some fundamental level, just look at how quick people are to appeal to the Law when some shit goes down that they don’t like. Don’t like abortion, make it illegal; like abortion, protect it by Law. Don’t like guns, make them illegal; like guns, waggle your finger emphatically in the direction of the second amendment. Don’t like illegal aliens, have the government build a wall; like illegal aliens, have the government provide them with public subsidies and sanctuary. And the list goes on and on and on—education, healthcare, poverty, war, etc. etc.—unto absolute power. Without getting into the minutiae of it right now, it will suffice to say that all of this can be handled by appealing to choice and the responsibility of individuals to deal with the consequnces of those choices. Why don’t we, then, you ask. Well…I suspect because it’s not as linear; not as mathematical; not as ostensibly simple. Legality is also very abstract, which makes it look and feel very intellectual, requiring a high degree of erudition and competence to mange it. Which makes people feel safe in the hands of those who say they shall wield it for the common good.

The bigger the State the smaller the perceived moral consequence.  The smaller the moral consequence the greater the perception that social woes are being or have been handled. And, well, they have been, legally. But not morally, which is why moral degeneration continues not only unabated but even exponentially, whilst legal intervention increases likewise exponentially, as though there is an inverse relationship between the two. But people, confusing moral ethics with legal ethics, continue to vote for this person or that, swinging back and forth with the regularity of a pendulum between the conservative parties and liberal ones, seeking out more and more radical players, in the futile hope that if they just get the right person in charge everything will be fine. Instead of blaming the philosophical assumptions which legitimize government, they blame rulers for not ruling properly. As morality then declines in a morality-less system, and as moral consequence continues to be felt with greater severity, the people begin to vote in greater numbers for ideologues and authoritarians…people who will push or promise to push their agendas with greater force and less compromise. This is because once you’ve accepted that government is good and government is truth and authority is reality and legality is ethics, you understand—though perhaps subconsciously; or even emotionally—that the more despotic the ruler, and the more worthless and disinterested he is at doing anything other than slaking his own thirst for power, the BETTER he is at ruling. Because power IS the only rational objective of ruling Authority, period.

END PART ONE

 

 

If it is Good That Guns be Made Legal Then it Must be Good That They be Made Illegal: Legal Ethics Belong to Authority, Period

     Though I do understand why we are concerned that America’s second amendment may be suspended by an increasingly overt form of government autocracy, what we should not be is surprised. Once morality—moral ethics—has been replaced by legality—legal ethics—then we must understand that what is legal may be rendered illegal at any moment and for any reason without any hypocrisy nor rational violation on the part of the Authority (the State, in this case), which exists as the practical and necessary manifestation of the Law.
     Why is this?
     Well, legality itself is the problem. You see, legality makes all men criminals because it criminalizes will. Our (mine and yours) own choice to act on our own behalf is subordinated to the Law….indeed, that’s the whole point of law—we may act only insofar as we are allowed to act. Our individual wills then are not free…they are hedged in by the law, and guided necessarily to their eventual and inevitable complete nullification, which the Law implies according to its philosophical premises. This nullification of will by law grows more overt and obvious over time by nature and necessity, regardless of what kind of political officials are put in charge of the law’s carrying out. The pebble which is dropped will fall, no matter the character of the man who lets it go. This is why all governments must and do eventually snap the bloody trap of collectivist despotism…government, ironically, is the trap which becomes trapped. It’s in the premises. That is, it’s the nature of government. Government by its very root philosophical purpose and meaning is independent of man’s will. That’s the whole idea. Under law, which means under authority, which means under government, it’s not about will and choice, it’s about obedience. This is obvious and I hope needs no explanation…legal dictums are commands, they are not suggestions. And the most benevolent ruler of all cannot change this fact, because if he did, he would not be a ruler in the first place. A contradiction in terms—e.g. a ruler who does not RULE, for example—cannot be made manifest. It cannot be made real.
     To summarize the above, man’s will is nullified by law. Obedience to the law is the ethical standard, not morality, which has to do with will…with choice. And obedience to the law really means obedience to the Authority, without which the law has no practical relevancy and thus no functional existence.
     So now to guns, specifically.
     The problem is not that guns may be made illegal (and almost certainly will be), the problem is that some ruling class of political elites think that they have the right to subordinate man’s will to that which they decide to allow…by law. The problem is not that guns (or anything else for that matter) may be deemed illegal, it’s that we accept that our lives are futile absent an Authority (government) which claims for itself the right to allow man to act—which means to exist, at root, once the logic is teased out—by placing him under law, and thus which subordinates his will entirely by making it subject to an external ethical standard (the Law) utterly in the hands of this Authority. So, while it’s technically correct to state that it’s wrong to make guns illegal, the bigger issue is that we accept that they should be subject to legality at all.
     My overarching message here is that you cannot synthesize morality and legality. They are completely antipodal ethical premises. If we accept that guns are properly subject to the law, then why do we cry foul when the Authority makes them illegal? To accept legal ethics is accept that the Authority—which IS the practical incarnation of Law—knows what should and should not be allowed at any given moment. What you want became irrelevant the moment you agreed that the Law was good and by extension that government was good and by extension that your existence should be ruled, not chosen by you. So to say that guns should be legal and not illegal is some very, very fine hypocrisy, quite frankly.
     Unless you happen to be one of the ruling elite.