Friday, November 23, 2012

#13.7 Peace Revolution Podcasts 51 thru 55

Episodes 51 through 55 – Education and Freedom

2012-3-25: #51 Truth is the Enemy of the State / The Irony of Secrecy

Those who have been following along with us, that is you have now become somewhat more aware of what Solzhenitsyn had to teach us, you'll love how Peg Luksik explains Outcome Based Education * (OBE). The parallels are obvious, especially regarding remediation. Succinctly, this changes the role of education from training people, of whatever age, how to use their minds (how to think in order that one's actions produce more accurate and reliable results) to assessments of people based on arbitrary standards of performance. The ultimate goal is collectivism.

A few notes of our own that relate: Notice the word “control” in common usage is always to be observed as a presumption of authority, whereas in normal human relations we recognize true leadership in any human enterprise by attributes of “command” which bear on our assessment of how well that person uses, or has used, their mind to determine actions which are more accurate and reliable than your own or than most others you know. We audaciously condemn this practice as a system of mis-education run erroneously and unlawfully (natural law) by the authorities. Consider the ramifications and make your educational decisions accordingly based on your own circumstances.

By the way, the very same paradigm described here as applied to education also has even wider reference to science and is enforced through research grants, promotions, lectureships, etc. This marks a distinct corruption of science itself. As we have already seen, that is if you have been following along so far, this corruption is not new. We reiterate that the “feet of clay” of science, so called, is limited to what it studies (what is allowed and disallowed to study) and in this regard what outcomes are prescribed beforehand determine what science studies; data that supports an outcome desired by those who pay for the science (from whatever source or motives, public or private) will be accepted, that which does not will be discarded. We would normally consider this practice fraudulent, but factors such as “the noble lie” take care of this so that the truth is rarely seen by the general public.

Then the episode turns to a brief discussion of the related subject of social psychopathology. After all, if there are such who would deliberately attempt to control others (psychopaths) through whatever means (OBE and its equivalents in science) and many of these people do tend to gravitate to the levers of state power, I don't see how any possible effort to establish (the or an) VEN can avoid considering this subject and its implications.

Richard Grove describes the Trivium, the way to learn anything as:

Grammar -> Logic -> Rhetoric
Knowledge -> Understanding -> Wisdom
Input -> Process -> Output

Learning the fallacies provides self defence (there are extensive notes on the link). Grove considers belief systems as counterfeit knowledge; illusion accepted as truth, which is inherently irrational. This ultimately leads to democide; the killing of people by their governments, whether it's through conscription into armies or simple genocide. Combined with occulting (secreting) of useful information and substituting this pre-defined dataset, the system becomes a control mechanism by deception. Belief is regarded as the rest stop on the way to knowledge.

This episode closes with Corbett Report Interview 475: Curing Statism with Stefan Molyneux, the Canadian podcaster philosopher.
Homework:

Psychopathology:
Hervey Cleckley- The Mask of Sanity
Martha Stout- The Sociopath Next Door

Learning Fallacies:
Aristotle- On Sophistical Refutations

2012-4-1: #52 The Art of Observation and the Law of Identity

Lysander Spooner (1808-1887) certainly figured it out at least by 1870. We should all pay attention as we want to make sure we do not repeat the history he describes. We shall eventually bring his critique to bear on the recently re-encountered John Galt speech as part of the dung sifting required to separate truth from deceptions.

You may likewise possibly enjoy Leonard Peikoff (the philosophical heir of Ayn Rand), his Introduction to Logic, as he reels off all the excuses for irrationality, including the amusing one that one should throw away that which has always worked simply because it is too old or out of fashion! The implications of these views have been all around us for more than 150 years at least.

It is of course one of the intentions of this episode to place Spooner's critique alongside the irrationalist's attacks on logic so that the picture emerges of a group of unscrupulous people whose law among themselves is “do what thou wilt” regardless of logic or any other consideration but what they can and intend to do. This too is the fatal flaw in Rand's work as she on one hand extols logic while giving a pass to irrationalists if they are among a certain group of people she refers to as “producers.” The implications here are obvious as well.

Then Grove and Heller discuss predators, which ties all this together.

This episode concludes with a discussion of the trivium method with Gene Odening. Of interest is his discussion of the relationship between inquisitions and trials for witchcraft and laws etc. directed against modern terrorism as fundamentally motivated by the desire of some (using the church or government) to steal the property of others (terrorists or witches). His discussion of logical fallacies is core material of the course.

Homework:

Lysander Spooner- No Treason: the Constitution of No Authority (1870)
Sr. Miriam Joseph- The Trivium
Logical fallacies:
http://www.don-lindsay-archive.org/skeptic/arguments.html
Steve Snyder's speed reading method (mentioned by Gene Odening.

2012-4-8: #53 Philosophy Beyond Doctrine / The Constitution of No Authority

This episode is almost 4 and half hours long, devoted to Spooner's 1870 essay, No Treason, The Constitution of No Authority. If you hadn't decided to read it before (as it was previously referenced under Homework), you'll get to hear it here. His critique, what he knew then is astounding in itself, is certainly relevant right now. You also get to know Manly P Hall's lecture, Philosophy Beyond Doctrine. Regardless of its length, we consider the information and ideas in this episode of vital importance in regard to the formation of (the or an) VEN.

Hall gives us a useful definition of selfishness, which Ayn Rand never does; selfishness is that which deliberately takes advantage of others. One therefore cannot be selfish all alone, it requires others either as pawns or hosts, since this definition of selfishness defines parasites. Once selfishness of this kind is dispensed with, we can get rid of the desperate ideas to always be right or to greedily possess all, leaving just how to be intelligently unselfish as a result. Of course there will always be those who assume quite incorrectly that the only way to become unselfish is to allow the state (or those who stand behind it) to act selfishly instead. If you have been following along, you'll be able to pin the appropriate logical fallacy to arguments of this kind and dispense with them.

Homework:

Stanley Milgram- Obedience to Authority: An Experimental View
The Lysander Spooner Reader

2012-4-14: #54 The Law of Personal Liberty / Outgrowing Slavery, Oppression, and Legal Plunder

This episode is dedicated to The Law by Frederic Bastiat (1850). I recall mentioning this work in another paper. If you have never heard of this great work before, well now's your chance. Of course it's important as a basis for (an or the) VEN.

I also note that Bastiat's observation that the law is a negative is echoed in the work of the Polish mathematician, Alfred Korzybski (despite his non-Aristotilian perspective), who pointed out the obvious nature of positive and negative statements, giving the negatives the greater importance entirely due to their relative scarcity; in any situation imaginable the positive statements easily outnumber the negative ones. In this light, the current public relations campaign against “negativity” is a deliberate attack on your ability to think for yourself because of course the negative statements about anything are more significant and will always make more difference in any decision than the more abundant positives. The truth of this is self evident to every normal child, why shouldn't it be obvious to more adults? Ah yes, most people have come through the public schools. That mostly explains it. They prepared us for belief over actually knowing and having an adequate ability to differentiate reality from illusion, the calculated assaults of the media on our thinking, etc. Bastiat's frontal attack on all “social engineers” was way ahead of his time, and of course remains relevant.

Bastiat's fundamental principle is that law is FORCE. We are obviously all ruled by natural laws, which include the weather (until certain people are found to be attempting to alter it – HAARP, etc. - stop it you fools, you'll kill us all! – ah yes, that's what they have in mind, be it noted, for after all they be psychopaths, if you have been following along). As examples of natural law being FORCE, consider that those who live in Southern California are FORCED to endure warm, sunny and dry weather most of the time, while those who live in Arctic Norway are FORCED to live with far more variant weather. It starts from there. But of course each place will have momentary dramatic reversals from the norm from time to time, and that too is by the law of nature. Since law is FORCE it should therefore be limited to things like protecting the lives, liberty and property of people who together agree that they will voluntarily pay for such services on some subscription basis. Anything more is strictly speaking, tyranny. Bastiat also later says that law is justice.

By the way, I find Bastiat's “pulling the pants down” off his targets, the socialists, social organizers, social engineers, legislators, etc. extremely humorous. Please enjoy this reading as the reader at least pronounces the French words and names correctly.

Homework:

Frederic Bastiat- The Law (1850)

2012-4-23: #55 Only Wisdom is Freedom / Why Tyranny Needs Your Ignorance to Exist

More grammar and applications of the course. You'll get to hear a 1961 lecture by Aldous Huxley (1894-1963) at the end of this episode among other things.

Homework:

H. G. Wells- The Open Conspiracy

INTERMISSION

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