Thursday, August 27, 2015

J.C. Wright Always Lies

Footnote 1

My introduction last time around didn’t, I now see, capture the full absurdity of the situation. I said that we needed to imagine an organization so secret that its own members don’t know it exists; so powerful that it controls the Vatican and the scientific community; whose only aim is to lie about everything at all times.

What we actually need to imagine is a second organization whose only unifying principal is a belief in the existence of the first organisation.

J.C Wright is not, so far as I can tell, actually for anything. He is against a thing he calls P.C or S.J.W. But P.C. and S.J.W. don’t, so far as I can tell, have any characteristics apart from the fact that they control everything and everyone and always lie.

Puppy: A person who believes in a thing called an Essjaydoubleyoo.

Essjaydoublyoo: A thing which a Puppy believe in.  .

Footnote 2

We can tell that the feminists have taken over the Hugo Awards because in the olden days before they did Ursula Le Guin kept on winning prizes.

Footnote 3

One of the things which genuinely upsets me is other people being illogical. Other people being stupid and being wrong I can cope with.

I think it goes back to school. There was a thing which went on which I think the teaching profession would now recognize as “inverse bullying”, where a group of little kids would select a big kid to torment, sometimes physically, mostly psychologically. It might, for example, involve following him around repeating the same word, pretty much any word, say “haircut” [irrespective of whether or not the mark had recently had his hair cut] over and over again, every lunch break and play-time, sometimes for months at a time. The intention was to induce what we would now call "a meltdown" - to make the mark lose his temper or throw a tantrum. When this happened, a member of the mob would shout "look, Miss, he's bullying me" at the first available authority figure. Although this happened regularly, the authority figures were always taken in. (I suppose that most of the school teachers were former bullies themselves: in those days it was a natural career progression.)
If, before we got to this point, the target went to an adult and explained the situation, the adult would without exception say “you don't need to ask me for help, you are, what, twice his size" but if the target retaliated and took matters into his own hands in any way, the adult would say “how dare you retaliate or take matters into your own hands, you are, what, twice his size."

C.S. Lewis remarks that the theory that bullies are always cowards comes from a radical misunderstanding of the idea that brave men are always chivalrous. [*]

A rather more insidious version of the game, best played in the lower school years, was the reverse insult game, which went, if I remember correctly, like this.

“You are Jewish / gay / a P*ki”

“No, I’m not, I have light coloured skin and unlike you actually go to Sunday School. Not that it would matter if I was, of course.”

“Anyone who says they aren’t Jewish / gay / a P*ki is Jewish / gay / a P*ki”

“Very well then, I am Jewish / gay / a P*ki”

“He admits he’s Jewish / gay / a P*ki! He admits he’s Jewish / gay / a P*ki”

“Only because he had previously established that anyone who admits being Jewish / Gay / a P*ki is not one, and anyone who denies it, is. And in any case, you can see that I am not, say, by skin colour and the fact that I don’t have to leave early on a Friday”

“Anyone who denies being Jewish / gay / a Paki is Jewish/ gay / a Paki. You said you weren't, so you are"

"Very well, I am..."

And so on, again, sometimes for months. 

It might have been a joke or a game. Or it might have been intended to induce “meltdowns” in people with a tendency to be too logical. Or it might just be that absolutely everything that happens when you are ten seems awfully important in retrospect.

At any rate: I experienced literally those same feelings of anger and frustration and the wish to lash out reading Mr Wright and fellow sufferers from the essjaydoubleyoo delusion explaining that they were pleased that no-one had voted for them in the end of term prize giving; that they hadn't wanted anyone to vote for them in the end of term prize giving; and the fact that they had lost proved that they had won and this was exactly what they had wanted all along. 

"Would you have said it was a crushing defeat if you'd won all the prizes?"
"Ha-ha that’s what essjaydoubleyoos always say. That proves we are right." 

In the days when I still read Dave Sim’s encyclicals I never once felt like that. Bemused, yes; disgusted, sometimes; pitying, possibly; but more often a sort of intellectual joy at discovering a particularly wonderful specimen. And Sim, obviously, had already earned the right to my attention by producing the best single issue of any comic book ever. [Terms and conditions apply] And his crazy was at least interesting crazy.

If not for their gate crashing of an award ceremony that I don't even specially care about, there is now reason at all for me to be interested in the Doggies. They don't even do bigotry particularly well.

Truthfully: if tomorrow, Wright announced to the world that he was a left wing atheist, had always been a left wing atheist; that he had been deliberately writing terrible books with terrible arguments in them to make Catholics look silly; and the fact that I had taken the trouble to show why his arguments and writing were terrible proves that he, J.C Wright, had fooled me and was much cleverer than me and had won the game, would anyone be ever a little bit surprised?

In fact, now I’ve said, I almost expect it to happen. I might even place money on it.

The other thing that the teachers — the same teachers who would threaten to hang, draw and quarter children for what they called “cheek” — used to say if you complained about psychological or reverse bullying is “Just ignore them and they will go away.” I don’t expect the Doggies to go away, but I do think we should probably go back to ignoring them.



[*] Brave men are not always chivalrous; brave men are in fact likely to be bullies. The Western tradition, in an attempt to make war less awful; invented the idea that brave men ought to be chivalrous; and for a long time many of the brave men believed in it.  See also: sportsmanship.

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