Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Hatred, the Leftist Emotion?

You’re a white racist.

This is one of the lovely epithets being slung around today. If I were on the receiving end of such hostility, I would have to respond by saying that I do not believe in turning the other cheek. Therefore . . .

You’re a totalitarian, postmodern progressive irrationalist, which means you are a communist/socialist/fascist/Nazi polylogist leftist and wannabe dictator whose only method of accomplishing anything is through physical force masked by governmentally initiated coercion and legal plunder called laws and regulations.
Other comments could be added, such as, “you’re a racist against whites, a misandrist, and a heterophobe,” but let’s just say, for short, that you are a communist/fascist leftist.* Your motivation is envy and hatred.

Envy has been covered by Helmet Schoeck and Ayn Rand, though Rand said envy is not the right word. Hatred of the good for being the good is more correct. So, let’s look at the psychology of hatred.

“Hatred of the good” is not envy because bad students who express this emotion do not want to be good students. They want the good students to fail, or at least be dragged down to their level. The same can be said for today’s entitlement poor. They do not want to work hard to become rich like successful business people. They want the rich to suffer (ignoring the history of rags-to-riches stories) and become like them.

Hatred, according to psychologist Edith Packer (Lectures on Psychology, chap. 4), is an emotion that begins with anger and resentment. If unchecked, that is, if underlying evaluations of the emotions are not examined for truth or falsity, and when false, not corrected, anger and resentment can develop into rage, hostility, and aggression.

Underlying anger, says Packer, is the universal evaluation that “an injustice has been done to me,” the word “universal” meaning all instances of anger express the same evaluation. That evaluation in any specific instance, however, may be valid or true, as when someone rudely cuts in front of us in a movie line, or invalid or false when it turns out that the cutter was joining his wife who was holding his place, or the cutting was inadvertent.

Anger expresses an injustice resulting from a specific action. Resentment expresses stored-up anger, stemming from a belief (valid or invalid) of long-term unjust treatment that has been neither confronted nor resolved. This can then lead to hatred.

Hatred says the target of the emotion is totally contemptible, that the person’s character, not just his or her specific action, is despised. To quote Packer, “an individual who feels hatred usually also feels helpless to correct the injustices committed by the person he hates. While hatred can be justified in some rare cases, almost always it is neurotic or pathological”** (Kindle loc. 1527-31).

Rage, an out-of-control fury deriving from the conviction that somehow I am the cause of this injustice, often follows from hatred and is pathological. As is hostility, although hostility is a defense mechanism that only looks like anger. Deriving from self-doubt that is projected outward at an alleged injustice, the aim of hostility is to make the target suffer. Aggression, finally, is the behavioral manifestation of hostility, verbal or physical actions to deliver the intended injuries.

Hatred of the good that we see today is rage, hostility, and aggression, by way of shouting down speakers or banging on windows to disturb them, blocking street intersections or entrances to venues, and, in the worst cases, hurling rocks and other missiles at the targets and destroying their property.

Such hostile behaviors are criminal, driven by frail egos filled with self-doubt, and are not new.

Recall the decidedly un-civil-disobedient student demonstrations of the 1960s, the seizures of property, kidnappings of college deans . . . and bombings and killings. Or recall 1920s Weimar Germany and its street clashes between red-coated communists and brown-shirted Nazis, not to mention Hitler’s Beer Hall Putsch.

The pathological and contemptibly immoral goal in both time periods was to tear down and destroy the accomplishments of capitalism and, ultimately, replace it with some form of totalitarianism. The same is occurring today.

Marx and Engels advocated violent revolution. Lenin, Mussolini, Stalin, and Hitler were just carrying out the communist/fascist founder’s wishes.

Marx’s method of argument was to declare to his opponents, “you’re just a bourgeoisie.” We can’t reason with you, he would say, because you don’t understand proletarian logic. That’s the meaning of “polylogism.”

Today’s Marxists, that is, the postmodern progressive Leninist, Mussolinian, Stalinist, Hitlerian leftists, do not even pretend to offer arguments. They smear opponents—people of prominent positions in universities, business, entertainment, and, especially, the media—by calling them names: “You’re a white racist, misogynist, homophobe.”

And they intimidate and threaten them, by pouring money into campaigns of vilification. If the targets do not toe the politically correct party line, or apologize grovelingly when they cross it, the leftists step up their campaigns to have them removed and their careers destroyed.

If this is not hatred—hatred of the good, the competent, the able—I don’t know what is.

(By the way, communist/fascist leftists, all crimes are hate crimes. That pickpocket who relieves you of your wallet is not doing it out of warm, fuzzy love.)

Postmodernism, and its leftist activists, reject the Enlightenment’s values of objective reality, reason, logic, individual rights, and capitalism. Stephen Hicks, in his book Explaining Postmodernism (1, 2), eloquently dubs postmodernists the Iagos to the Enlightenment’s Othellos. Their goal is to inject doubt into modernity’s values and, as it did with Othello, “let that doubt work like a slow poison” (Hicks, p. 200).

Or, as Hicks elsewhere describes the activists on college campuses (whom he denies the epithets “snowflakes” and “delicate flowers” because their tears, he says, are a tactic): the “grievances are not meant to be resolved. They are meant to fester and be used in the service of power-politics strategy. . . . The protesters’ point is to make unreasonable demands, and their goal is to see how much they can get away with.”

Calculated hate? How can it not be!

The antidote to this festering poison is a rational psychology that the Iagos do not possess, but if they did, it would consist of independence and a commitment to facts and truth.

In particular, it would be a commitment to the Enlightenment’s values that there really is an objective reality “out there,” that we can identify it through reason and logic, that we each individually possess rights deriving from our nature as human beings and applying universally to every person on earth, and that laissez-faire capitalism, or the closest thing we have ever come to it, has cured, and continues to cure, dread diseases, and has abolished, and continues to abolish, poverty in cultures worldwide by providing abundant opportunities for all to rise above their original stations in life.



* I’ve been struggling for some time to come up with an appropriate sobriquet to describe the far leftists. “Communist/fascist” works because differences between the two systems are superficial and Marx, Engels, and Lenin considered communism and socialism to be synonyms. “Left” on the political spectrum means total control of life and economy—this includes fascism—so “totalitarian leftist” becomes redundant.

** A justified emotion of hatred, for example, might be that of a victim of the Holocaust whose hatred is directed at the Nazis and their modern-day sympathizers.


No comments :