AuthorTopic: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize  (Read 13503 times)

Offline RE

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Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« on: July 24, 2016, 07:57:03 AM »


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Published on The Doomstead Diner on July 24, 2016



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Discuss this article at the Psychology Table inside the Diner



The reasons people become Kollapsniks (followers of Collapse Dynamics) vary quite a bit.  I came to collapse from the economic end, looking for the reasons behind the collapse of the investment banks Bear Stearns and Lehman brothers in 2008.



My early investigation led me to deduce it was primarily energy related, which led me to the Peak Oil forum.  That forum had it's heyday slightly before I arrived on the scene in around 2006, although it was still a highly active forum with 100s of posts a day going up in 2008 when I got there.  The preponderance of collapse discussion at this time revolved around economics and energy, and climate was only tangentially discussed occassionally.



human-extinctionDuring this period also, you were considered a fairly serious doomer if you suggested we would need to drop back to a 1750s style of living in order to deal with the lack of FFs and that a fairly significant number of people would have to die since the planet is in overshoot WRT Homo Saps without the extra energy input from fossil fuels.  You were REALLY serious as a Doomer if you suggested the best we could do is Stone Age technology living as Hunter-Gatherers.  There were a few people suggesting Extinction might be in the cards, but none of them suggested it would happen on an extremely short timeline, on the order of 20 years from present day or even less.  Even those who did suggest it were a relatively small number in the commentariat.



In the intervening years though, deterioration in the climate with more and bigger disasters each year and steadily rising concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere has brought a new and rising number of Kollapsniks into the community, the Klimate Kollapsnik.



The KK is barely concerned with economics at all, what worries her or him are all the dieing fishes as the ocean acidifies, along with dying phytoplankton who we will suffocate without their production of oxygen.  All of this gets blamed on the Great Evil occupying the Planet, Homo Sap.  VERMIN IN NEED OF EXTERMINATION! Homo Sap is responsible for all our ongoing and escalating problems due to burning FFs and turning the planet into an industrial sewer.  As a result, folks holding these views are becoming increasingly more prevalent across the collapse blogosphere, increasingly more nihilistic about possible outcomes and increasingly more misanthropic in their attitude toward their fellow Homo Saps.  A fairly common meme now amongst this crowd is that Homo Saps DESERVE to DIE, and the SOONER THE BETTER!



extinction-buttonIdentifying where this meme began is fairly EZ if you have been following collapse dynamics on the blogosphere these last 8 years, it began on Guy McPherson's Nature Bats Last website.  Guy was one of the first people to call for not just Human Extinction, but NEAR TERM Human Extinction, with his timeline constantly getting shorter on this, now to the point of calling it for 2020 according to some of his readers, although last I checked it was 2030.  Either way, that is a remarkably short timeline to 7.2B DEAD PEOPLE!



I participated on NBL for a couple of years in the commentariat, generally making the case that Extinction is an inevitability but that such a short timeline is highly unlikely and in the meantime you need to figure out how to survive a changing climate, because for whatever the underlying reasons are for this, it's definitely changing.  However, my attitude of trying to find solutions to a very nasty problem here was not well received in the NBL commentariat because it was deemed to be infused with too much HOPIUM.  Having ANY hope whatsoever that ANY Homo Saps can survive coming changes was considered DELUSIONAL.  Dr. McStinksion, the Great Guru of Death himself has proclaimed that it is HOPELESS.  We're ALL GONNA DIE.



The effect of this leadership position by Guy drew in to the NBL commentariat a lot of serious nihilists and misanthropes, mainly from long time environmental activists who have experienced failure after failure for the last 40 years in terms of trying to get anything about BAU changed in any real significant way.  Their conclusion now is that the BEST outcome that can occur is for Homo Sap to DIE as soon as possible, in order to perhaps save a few beloved trees and other animals.



extinction2There is a kind of confirmation bias ongoing here amongst these folks, Dr. McStinksion included.  Since they WANT Homo Sap to die, they cherry pick every piece fo data they can dig up to demonstrate it will happen. AND SOON!  No evidence to the contrary is tolerated, no argument that we can transition off FFs is acceptable.  If you have the temerity to make such an argument on NBL you are brigaded in the commentariat as the Extinction Hound Dogs are let loose and ridicule you as hopelessly deluded.



As a result of this, I left the NBL commentariat behind a year or two ago now.  Although I enjoy a good argument, the place was simply too fucking DEPRESSING.  Not a thread goes by where people don't talk about suicide.  You can't propose ideas for making things better because…IT'S HOPELESS!  So all that gets discussed is how Evil Homo Saps are and whether suicide is a good option here?  Even if you believe this to be true, is this really the way you want to spend your last days on Earth?  Wallowing in Suicidal Misery?



Now, this would not be a terrific problem if it was confined to NBL, I just knock that one off my Blogroll of websites to read and chat up collapse issues.  In the last year or so though, I am noting that the problem has metasticized.  I also participate on the Reddit Sub r/collapse, and haunting the commentariat there are numerous fans of Dr. McStinksion, led by one regular commenter FishMahBoi who is obsessed with the possibility that Cannibalism will be a prominent feature of the oncoming extinction.



I also cross post and regularly talk on the Collapse Cafe with Gail Tverberg who runs the Our Finite World blog.  I don't drop in the commentariat there too often, but after her last article I did so because I take issue with her cockamamie anthropological arguments that Homo Saps must have Fire because we have small jaws and need to cook our food.  Mostly we had a fairly genial discussion about our conflicting opinions on this topic, but again OFW has a very prolific poster Fast Eddy, who is yet another nihilist/misanthrope.  You can't make a positive comment on OFW these days without FE dropping in to accuse you of holding a passport to DelusiSTAN.  The commentariat of OFW USED to be fairly balanced with people proposing different ideas and possible solutions, but they seem to have mostly disappeared as the overwhelming meme now in that comentariat is that Homo Sap is doomed and no solution will work.  Although she is more cagey about it than Dr. McStinksion, you can tell Gail herself holds out no hope.  She is convinced Homo Saps must have fire to survive, convinced we will be unable to extract the expensive FFs left due to economic reasons and then will proceed to burn down all forests on earth in the insatiable Quest for Fire.  So this attitude attracts the nihilists and misanthropes into the commentariat, and then they come to dominate because they depress the hell out of everyone else and then people holding opposing opinions stop reading and/or contributing.



psychology-illustration-man-depressed-stateNow, given the fact I titled my blog the Doomstead Diner, you probably figure I am a pretty negative person myself WRT how things are going to progress as we move further down the Collapse Highway.  Compared to the average J6P and even many people who frequent collapse websites I am pretty Doomy, since I forsee a large scale die off of the Homo Sap population occuring over the next century, 90% or even 99% of current population seems likely to me to go to the Great Beyond.  That could cut Homo Sap population down to the millions from the current billions.  That's a lot of DEAD PEOPLE.



I also am completely aware of the climate problems we face, and the likelihood that over some timeframe here we will get an ocean level rise which will inundate most of the major cities, which is one of the many areas die off will come from.  We'll also have disease problems as sewage systems go offline and as clean water becomes less available to the population.  We'll have famine as aquifers are drained dry and we'll have wars as the remaining populations fight over the few resources that remain.  This is an old story, the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse, with the only real significant difference the scale of the operation they will undertake this time.



the-four-horsemen-of-the-apocalypseOne difference from prior events of this type often brought up is the presence of the NUKES, specifically the spent fuel ponds which need to be actively cooled for decades.  While they are a nasty problem, I don't see them as existentially threatening, at least not the reactors, the ICBMs could be.  One can only HOPE the maniacs with their fingers on the Button have enough CFS to keep from pushing that button in the MAD scenario.



In the event of a crash of the system, the spent fuel can be moved to places like Yucca Mountain.  In the absence of active cooling, this stuff will melt down, but not go super critical if not packed too tight.  The desert there is going to be unlivable ANYHOW due to climate change and there is no water table left to speak of to pollute there.  It just becomes a no-go zone for a million years or so.



Some radionucleotides will be emitted as gases, and this will likely raise background radiation levels up some, but not by that much we can't survive it.  Likeliest outcome there is a rise in infant mortality, greater cancer frequency and a shorter overall lifespan, at least at the beginning.  Over time however, this radiation will dissipate.



So what you are left with here is a Binary if you are a serious Kollapsnik.  Either there will be SOME people left (however small the number), or there will be NOBODY left.  For the Nihilists & Misanthropes, they HOPE for the termination of Homo Sap as a species, so they latch on to every piece of evidence they can find to justify this conclusion.



For myself on the other side of this binary divide, I look for evidence to establish the opposite is true, that SOME people can survive.



https://arizonadailyindependent.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Phanerozic-temp.jpg



The most important piece of evidence in this respect is the geological history of the Earth, which has gone through numerous periods of heating and cooling, numerous periods where carbon was released into the atmosphere and then re-sequestered, up to something like 4000ppm, an order of magnitude higher than the current atmospheric content of carbon.  The Max AGT the earth experiences during these cycles has an upper limit, around 11C above the current baseline.  So the question is here, can Homo Sap survive an environment where the AGT is 11C above the current one?



http://rhc-2876.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/three-bears.jpg Well, not in many if not most places on the earth we currently inhabit, that's for sure.  The Tropics are pretty certain to be Hell Holes, they already are in some places during summer with new records being set all the time for high temps.  We already postulated we will lose a lot of current low lying coastal areas to sea level rise.  So habitat will shrink, but will it entirely DISAPPEAR?  Never has before, so I don't see why it would this time either.  Both the upper latitudes and the upper elevations on the remaining land mass are likely to have survivable habitats.  Rainfall in some areas is increasing to flood proportions, in other areas decreasing to drought proportions.  Between the two, there are "sweet spots" where just the RIGHT amount of rain falls.



What about the fact that certain crops are adapted to certain environments, and because this change is occuring rapidly they won't have time to adapt?



Well, in this case Homo Sap can actually be HELPFUL, since as we migrate we can bring the seeds from one place to another and back into a suitable climate to grow those crops.



What about Poor Soil in many places in the North which have not been suitable for growing plants over the last few millenia?  Well, soil isn't really necessary, plants can be grown through Hydroponics and Aquaculture.  Over time, the compost from this can be used for soil ammendation, and gradually improve that end of food production, thus gradually bringing the population back up from a period of Undershoot to one of stability and sustainability.



You can of course go on and on with what the logistical problems are and why our current political systems will not allow for the necessary changes to be made fast enough.  However, one thing is pretty certain here, which is that once we hit a period where half the population on earth dies within a few years, there will be significant changes in the political will of the people still left standing!  Will they be able to organize and make the necessary changes as this progresses?  That is an open question you can't answer for sure, since at least in recorded history Homo Sap has never faced such an existential challenge.  However, this again is an area where I prefer to think POSITIVELY rather than NEGATIVELY, and simply assume everybody will start cannibalizing everyone else.  Cannibalism may occur, it certainly has in the past in times of deprivation.  It has limits though, and people generally only do this down to a certain point where they can once again gather enough other foods than their fellow Homo Saps.






In the end here if you are a Kollapsnik, you have 2 choices.  Either you can be nihilistic about the whole thing and QUIT with the philosophy that there is nothing you can do to stop it or even just help yourself survive a bit longer, or you can take a POSITIVE philosophy and make attempts to survive and also to sow the seeds of a better society and a Better Tomorrow sometime in the admittedly distant future, as it appears now.  Your days on earth are numbered no matter which way this goes, everyone ends up dead in the end no matter what.  So WTF does anyone want to live out their last days on earth mired in misery bemoaning their own extinction?



Not to pull any punches here, WTF don't these folks just OFF THEMSELVES NOW?  They might save a few trees and cockroaches, both of which have more redeeming social value than nihilists.  Do everyone a favor and pull the plug already!  At the very least, it would make the Collapse Blogosphere a whole lot less depressing!



http://www.drakearnold.com/OldWebsite/development_files/tradart/paintings/watercolor/seppuku1.jpg



For the rest of us, where there is life, there is still hope.  It looks grim to be sure, but it is always darkest before the dawn.  It's not OVAH until the Fat Lady Sings, and she's not singing yet.  Skinny Little Girls are singing though, and cheer up here!  The SUN☼ will come out tomorrow!




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Offline jdwheeler42

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2016, 10:53:09 AM »
You know, I never thought I'd see the day when VHEMt.org, the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement, seemed moderate.  Their motto is "May We Live Long and Die Out".  They simply advocate not having any more children.
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Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2016, 12:08:21 PM »
You know, I never thought I'd see the day when VHEMt.org, the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement, seemed moderate.  Their motto is "May We Live Long and Die Out".  They simply advocate not having any more children.

AKA. Children of Men.

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Offline Eddie

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2016, 12:59:53 PM »
So civilized.

How about, "Kill All The Ones Who Look Different and Let God Sort 'Em Out"

A much more likely approach to population control, given our history so far, I'd say.

Death to the Nihilists! (They're just asking for it anyway.)
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Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2016, 01:07:50 PM »
Death to the Nihilists! (They're just asking for it anyway.)

Bring on the Orkin Man.  :icon_sunny:


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Offline K-Dog

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2016, 02:13:10 PM »
You know, I never thought I'd see the day when VHEMt.org, the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement, seemed moderate.  Their motto is "May We Live Long and Die Out".  They simply advocate not having any more children.

Having no children does not make for a better world if you have any hope at all.  Consider the Shakers.  Evidence seems to be that except for being totally repressed sexually they were good people.  By having no children their legacy died out.

Shaker, the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing, a celibate millenarian group that established communal settlements in the United States in the 18th century. Based on the revelations of Ann Lee and her vision of the heavenly kingdom to come, Shaker teaching emphasized simplicity, celibacy, and work. Shaker communities flourished in the mid-19th century and contributed a distinctive style of architecture, furniture, and handicraft to American culture. The communities declined in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Shakers derived originally from a small branch of English Quakers founded by Jane and James Wardley in 1747. They may have adopted the French Camisards’ ritual practices of shaking, shouting, dancing, whirling, and singing in tongues. The Shaker doctrine, as it came to be known in the United States, was formulated by Ann Lee, a textile worker in Manchester. “Mother Ann,” as she was known to her followers, had a troubled marriage and had suffered difficulties while pregnant (she had four children, all of whom died young), and in 1758 she converted to the “Shaking Quakers.” After enduring persecution and imprisonment for participation in noisy worship services, she had a series of revelations, after which she regarded herself—and was so regarded by her followers—as the female aspect of God’s dual nature (e.g., male and female) and the second Incarnation of Christ. She developed an elaborate theology and established celibacy as the cardinal principle of the community.

In 1774 Mother Ann came to America with eight disciples, having been charged by a new revelation to establish the millennial church in the New World. Settling in 1776 at Niskeyuna (now Watervliet), New York, the small group benefited from an independent revival movement that was sweeping the district, and within five years it grew to several thousand members.

After Mother Ann’s death (1784), the Shaker church came under the leadership of Elder Joseph Meacham and Eldress Lucy Wright. Together they worked out the distinctive pattern of Shaker social organization, which consisted of celibate communities of men and women living together in dormitory-style houses and holding all things in common. The first Shaker community, established at New Lebanon, New York, in 1787, retained leadership of the movement as it spread through New England and westward into Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana. By 1826, 18 Shaker villages had been set up in eight states.

Although often persecuted for pacifism or for bizarre beliefs falsely attributed to them, the Shakers won admiration for their model farms, orderly and prosperous communities, and fair dealing with outsiders. Their industry and ingenuity produced numerous (usually unpatented) inventions, including, among other things, the screw propeller, babbitt metal, a rotary harrow, an automatic spring, a turbine waterwheel, a threshing machine, the circular saw, and the common clothespin. They were the first to package and market seeds and were once the largest producers of medicinal herbs in the United States.

Shaker dances and songs are a genuine folk art, and the simple beauty, functionalism, and honest craftsmanship of their meetinghouses, barns, and artifacts have had a lasting influence on American design. The greatest example of such influence is Shaker furniture.

The Shaker movement reached its height during the 1840s, when about 6,000 members were enrolled in the church. It later declined, however, because of changes in spiritual needs and the church’s insistence on celibacy and its opposition to childbearing. In 1874 the society was advertising for members, emphasizing physical comfort as well as spiritual values. By 1905 there were only 1,000 members. At the turn of the 21st century there was one working Shaker village, Sabbathday Lake, near New Gloucester, Maine; it had fewer than 10 members.


The Voluntary Human Extinction Movement seems like a benign idea on the surface but people participating in the movement guarantee a particular kind of future.  They flip survival of the fit on it's head with bad results.



A pleasant vision but this will be the reality.



It has happened before.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 02:20:48 PM by K-Dog »
Under ideal conditions of temperature and pressure the organism will grow without limit.

Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2016, 02:30:53 PM »

Having no children does not make for a better world if you have any hope at all.  Consider the Shakers.  Evidence seems to be that except for being totally repressed sexually they were good people.  By having no children their legacy died out.

Given that at the time methods of contraception were fairly primitive (sheep intestine condoms, etc), I'm not sure you can call them "sexually repressed".  How else could they stop making babies?  OK, I suppose they might have become Squishy Friends with same sex members of the shaker community.  ::)

It is nice to know though that Nihilism has been around since at least the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.  The obvious good result here is that Nihilists voluntarily self-extinguish.

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Offline monsta666

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2016, 02:58:38 PM »
Given that at the time methods of contraception were fairly primitive (sheep intestine condoms, etc), I'm not sure you can call them "sexually repressed".  How else could they stop making babies?  OK, I suppose they might have become Squishy Friends with same sex members of the shaker community.  ::)

It is nice to know though that Nihilism has been around since at least the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.  The obvious good result here is that Nihilists voluntarily self-extinguish.

Despite their vows of strict celibacy the Shaker movement lasted over a century. I am guessing a big chunk of their longevity was the fact they recruited loads of members from the general public. Perhaps the same will be true of nihilists in the article you speak off: they will draw many to their group even after the original founders perish. As for contraception there are ways of doing this without using anything if the couple apply the natural family planning method of the woman keeping track of her menstrual cycle while the guy pulls out. Taking both measures would reduce the chances of pregnancy dramatically provided both partners maintain discipline.

Offline JRM

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2016, 03:25:20 PM »
A cursory investigation shows that there is no single thing known as "nihilism," unless it is described by someone not acquainted with the word and its many variants, types and sub-types.

Oddly enough, Wikipedia is better on this topic than some websites claiming to be "philosophical".

Wikipedia lists these various kinds of nihilism, and I don't doubt that it leaves some important variants out.:

   Forms of nihilism

1.1   Metaphysical nihilism
1.2   Epistemological nihilism
1.3   Mereological nihilism
1.4   Existential nihilism
1.5   Moral nihilism
1.6   Political nihilism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nihilism

  • I'd like to add to this list
    Social nihilism.

    If political nihilism is the belief or attitude that politics doesn't matter -- either because "it can't matter" or because
    "if it did matter, it doesn't matter, because 'nothing can be done about it--,'" social nihilism would have a similar definition. But it would address broader social concerns than merely the political. E.g., "social change activities or movements don't matter because they must necessarily always fail to achieve their purpose, aims, goals or agendas."


Probably, most who use the word without having investigated its variants in any depth have "moral nihilism" in mind when using the word. Moral nighilism, on the other hand, may be nothing more than an epistemolotical nihilism applied to ethics and morality. But you can believe that the topic is more complex ("deeper") than one would imagine upon a cursory glance at it.

Half of the people who subscribe to some superficial notion of nihilism ("I'm a nihilist") are probably simply in a protracted bad mood (read "depressed").  Most of the remaning half are probably just ignorant and flippant about it. ("Fuck it! Philosophy sucks! It bores me. Another glass of tequila please.")
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 03:38:45 PM by JRM »
My "avatar" graphic is Japanese calligraphy (shodō) forming the word shoshin, meaning "beginner's mind". --  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoshin -- It is with shoshin that I am now and always "meeting my breath" for the first time. Try it!

Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2016, 03:33:41 PM »
. As for contraception there are ways of doing this without using anything if the couple apply the natural family planning method of the woman keeping track of her menstrual cycle while the guy pulls out.

PULLING OUT?
  ::)

This is right up there in success ratio with "Don't worry sweety, I won't cum in your mouth"

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Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2016, 03:55:04 PM »
A cursory investigation shows that there is no single thing known as "nihilism," unless it is described by someone not acquainted with the word and its many variants, types and sub-types.

So WTF is your point here?  Some types of Nihilism are better than other types?   :icon_scratch:  We need to understand Nihilists better and make a Safe Space on the internet for them?  :icon_scratch:  We should open up our websites so Nihilists have unrestricted Free Speech?  :icon_scratch:  We need to go into a detailed analysis of the types of Nihilism in order to better understand this philosophy?  :icon_scratch:

Feel free to enlighten me how you would deal with Nihilists if you ran the fucking Diner.  I will honestly consider your suggestions.

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Offline JRM

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #11 on: July 24, 2016, 04:10:28 PM »
A cursory investigation shows that there is no single thing known as "nihilism," unless it is described by someone not acquainted with the word and its many variants, types and sub-types.

So WTF is your point here?  Some types of Nihilism are better than other types?   :icon_scratch:  We need to understand Nihilists better and make a Safe Space on the internet for them?  :icon_scratch:  We should open up our websites so Nihilists have unrestricted Free Speech?  :icon_scratch:  We need to go into a detailed analysis of the types of Nihilism in order to better understand this philosophy?  :icon_scratch:

Feel free to enlighten me how you would deal with Nihilists if you ran the fucking Diner.  I will honestly consider your suggestions.

RE


Consider this list:

bucket
box (wooden crate type)
rock (large enough to sit upon, but without being too big for such a purpose)
books (a stack of them)
old broken television set
chair
bee hive (in a commercial honey production, known as a "super")
pile of lumber
small, low-lying table

All of these are things which can be sat upon.

Only one is a chair.

It would be odd to think of them as all varieties and types of "chair" on account of them all being useful for sitting upon (You've got to turn the bucket upside down to sit on it).

That there are many items which all can rightly be named "chair" is true.

That there are many varieties of nihilism is true. 

But all chairs have more in common with one another than varieties of nihilism do, and it's more confusing to the understanding to call somebody a "nihilist" than to call a three legged stool a "chair".

Which is just to say that when we utter the word "nihilism," it's similar to saying "large fluffy thing."  A cloud is a large fluffy thing, but so is a large pillow, certain breeds of dog, and most of the political statements issuing forth from Donald Trump's odd-looking mouth.
My "avatar" graphic is Japanese calligraphy (shodō) forming the word shoshin, meaning "beginner's mind". --  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoshin -- It is with shoshin that I am now and always "meeting my breath" for the first time. Try it!

Offline JRM

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2016, 04:17:29 PM »
Feel free to enlighten me how you would deal with Nihilists if you ran the fucking Diner.  I will honestly consider your suggestions.

You're doing a bang up job of it, actually.  I don't have any complaints at all.  I think you've been using the word "nihilism" to mean "nincompoops who cop out by insisting that "Nothing can be done to make ours a better world, so we should all just give it up and accept our fate as a doomed species on a dying planet."

This seems to be a mash up of some newfangled mix of idiot despair blended heavily with ignorance, depression and aloof arrogance.  But is it nihilism? Perhaps. But if it is I'm not sure how it fits with the previously defined parameters.

My "avatar" graphic is Japanese calligraphy (shodō) forming the word shoshin, meaning "beginner's mind". --  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoshin -- It is with shoshin that I am now and always "meeting my breath" for the first time. Try it!

Offline RE

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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #13 on: July 24, 2016, 04:29:20 PM »
A cursory investigation shows that there is no single thing known as "nihilism," unless it is described by someone not acquainted with the word and its many variants, types and sub-types.

So WTF is your point here?  Some types of Nihilism are better than other types?   :icon_scratch:  We need to understand Nihilists better and make a Safe Space on the internet for them?  :icon_scratch:  We should open up our websites so Nihilists have unrestricted Free Speech?  :icon_scratch:  We need to go into a detailed analysis of the types of Nihilism in order to better understand this philosophy?  :icon_scratch:

Feel free to enlighten me how you would deal with Nihilists if you ran the fucking Diner.  I will honestly consider your suggestions.

RE


Consider this list:

bucket
box (wooden crate type)
rock (large enough to sit upon, but without being too big for such a purpose)
books (a stack of them)
old broken television set
chair
bee hive (in a commercial honey production, known as a "super")
pile of lumber
small, low-lying table

All of these are things which can be sat upon.

Only one is a chair.

It would be odd to think of them as all varieties and types of "chair" on account of them all being useful for sitting upon (You've got to turn the bucket upside down to sit on it).

That there are many items which all can rightly be named "chair" is true.

That there are many varieties of nihilism is true. 

But all chairs have more in common with one another than varieties of nihilism do, and it's more confusing to the understanding to call somebody a "nihilist" than to call a three legged stool a "chair".

Which is just to say that when we utter the word "nihilism," it's similar to saying "large fluffy thing."  A cloud is a large fluffy thing, but so is a large pillow, certain breeds of dog, and most of the political statements issuing forth from Donald Trump's odd-looking mouth.

I would not sit on a beehive regardless of it's utility as a chair.

I would not sit on a cloud, because it is just water vapor.  I would sit on a pillow though.

IMHO JRM, you are at LEAST as Out to Lunch as AZ.  Get a grip on reality dude.

RE
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Re: Nihilism, Misanthropy & Misery Metasticize
« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2016, 04:40:27 PM »
Feel free to enlighten me how you would deal with Nihilists if you ran the fucking Diner.  I will honestly consider your suggestions.

You're doing a bang up job of it, actually.  I don't have any complaints at all.  I think you've been using the word "nihilism" to mean "nincompoops who cop out by insisting that "Nothing can be done to make ours a better world, so we should all just give it up and accept our fate as a doomed species on a dying planet.

I'm a pro at this shit.  I've been an internet moderator since the Wild West days on AOL.  Before that I did IRC, but there wasn't ANY moderation there.  You are talking over 20 year here of experience in fielding internet shit.  You can't find anyone anywhere who has done this longer and survived to talk about it. lol.

Quote
This seems to be a mash up of some newfangled mix of idiot despair blended heavily with ignorance, depression and aloof arrogance.  But is it nihilism? Perhaps. But if it is I'm not sure how it fits with the previously defined parameters.

Give it the Duck Test.


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