nolongerinbetween

Posts Tagged ‘trump

How do you talk to a deluded individual? How do you get inside his brain and pop his narrative bubble? How do you cure his blindness? How do you deprogramme his tunnel vision? When someone is intellectually disingenuous at least there is a break in his defence since deep down he knows he is in the wrong and that he acts in bad faith. So playing the morality card against him might push him back on the path of truth. But someone deluded is not necessarily disingenuous no matter how insane his narrative might seem to us. He believes his falsehoods so, technically speaking, he is not lying and he is acting in good faith. If you listen to these guys storming the Capitol you can be surprised by their conviction that they are doing the right thing and that they are on a mission to save their country. They are genuine in their patriotic insanity. They are violent and murderous but they think they are on the right side of history. Like any entitled crusader. So how do you reach them? How can you make them snap out of their delusion? How do you bridge two minds that don’t share the same reality? And just because they truly believe in their deluded reality does it mean they are absolved of all blame and responsibility? I don’t think so. The road to delusion is a long journey made up of small moments of concession, disingenuity, downplaying, indulging, covering up, looking the other way etc that finally added up. Trump didn’t just happen. He didn’t force himself on us. He got there because some people put him there. He couldn’t keep going without his followers and his enablers turning a blind eye to his insanity at every step. Delusion might be an excuse when the reality you see is what you genuinely perceive as reality through the tainted lens on your eyes. But the lens didn’t get there without your consent.

The refusal of the Republican Party to investigate and condemn the attack of their main democratic institution speaks volumes of their true identity. Underplaying the American Reichstag moment is a national disgrace of historic proportions. To witness firsthand that turmoil and then to claim there was no insurrection but a peaceful protest is beyond belief. To listen to Donald Trump orchestrating the coup and then blaming Nancy Pelosi for it is surreal. To watch the violent uprising unfold in front of your very eyes and then to listen to Donald Trump praising the rioters as if they were some hippies at a Love Fest: “There was such LOVE at that rally. They were PEACEFUL people, these were great people, the crowd was unbelievable and I mentioned the word ‘love.’ The love is in the air, I’ve never seen anything like it.” is almost comical. How on earth can someone listen to any of these without snapping out of their deluded reality? How can someone witness this level of scripted, deliberate brutality and still pretend it was just a peaceful protest that got out of hand? Perception doesn’t just happen to you. You might not have a full control over it but some of your perception is maintained clean and healthy at your will. Delusion is a lame excuse and if you suffer from it you are responsible for it. There’s no such thing as innocent delusion.

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The election of Donald Trump as president of United States is one of the biggest events in the recent history of mankind, after the Holocaust. If there’s any lesson that the Second World War and Shoah taught us was that underneath the surface of civilization lies barbary. If you scratch the shallow surface of an otherwise civilized man you will find a terrifying beast. After Auschwitz the idea of firm progress and definitive civilization is just a convenient delusion. We can no longer take for granted our humanity and our mankind moving forward. The claims of historicism, that our civilization goes inexorably and necessarily toward a determinate end, supposedly great, we all know by now that are untenable.

Trump’s election as the president of United States is yet another living proof that we don’t learn anything from history and our past mistakes. After 80 years our civilization was tested again and it failed big time. Humanity stumbled once more into one of its darkest moments of toxic populism. And the fact that Christianity is the one that invested Donald Trump with power and crowned him as the ruler of our world is a demise of the Christian Church as the Light of the world and speaks volumes about the hidden darkness that lies deep within religion. The legend of the Grand Inquisitor where the Church turns the teaching of Christ upside down and rejects Him while embracing the Inquisitor is more actual than ever. The idea that a decent Christian can vote for someone who is overtly the exact opposite of what Jesus taught us and he urges us to be the same is beyond comprehension. If you look at his ideas and his facts you will find hate, division, lies, exclusion, disdain, bullying, misogyny, mockery, pride, greed, racism, deceit, sexism, cowardice. You will find biblical illiteracy (“When I drink my little wine and have my little cracker in church”). You will find lack of remorse (“Forgiveness from God? No, I never ask for it. I don’t bring God into this”). You will find vengeance (“My favourite verse from the Bible? That’s easy: an eye for an eye.“). You will find cruelty (Waterboarding? I love it!!!! We should make it even tougher!“) etc How on earth is this Christ-like? How on earth can a Christian witness all that horror and then vote for him because he defends the Christian values? Am I missing something? Is hatred a Christian value? Is disdain for the poor and underprivileged a Christian value? Is lying a Christian value? Is sexual assault and cheating on your spouse a Christian value? Is defending a pedophile a Christian value? Is lack of compassion for the oppressed and victims a Christian value? Is breaking your promises a Christian value? Is making fun of disabled people a Christian value? Is denigrating war heroes a Christian value? Is blaming others and taking no responsibility for your actions a Christian value? Is racism and telling black American women to “go back” to where they came from a Christian value? Is bragging about the size of your genitals on television a Christian value? Is paying porn actresses and prostitutes to silence them a Christian value? Is praising murderous dictators like Putin or Kim Jong-un a Christian value? Is admiring a dictator like Rodrigo Duterte for his sinister extrajudicial executions a Christian value? Is defending the royal Saudi when they brutally kill and chop up dissident journalists into pieces while they are still alive (Jamal Khashoggi) a Christian value? Is separating babies and children from their mothers before deportation a Christian value? Is demonizing migration and calling the migrants rapists a Christian value? Is, for the love of God, demonizing refugees, people who are fleeing war, starvation and rape a Christian value? I can’t think of a more grotesque situation than when I saw those crowds of Christians cheering when he started demonizing and speaking ill of refugees escaping war and persecution. Refugees, for Christ’s sake, not migrants! For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you didn’t take me in, I was naked and you didn’t clothe me. Whenever you did not do it for one of these, you didn’t do it for Me.” (Mathew 25) How on earth can you be a Christian, look Christ in the eyes and then cheer for such a disgrace? Mocking starved and displaced refugees who are running from brutal wars and to whom you are supposed to offer sanctuary and protection, while telling me and yourself that he, Donald Trump, the most ungodly president of the United States is the saviour of your Christian values? Are you for real? Don’t you have any shame? Just because it happens to have the same stance on two issues (homosexuality and abortion), even though we all know he just capitalizes on them for electoral purposes, doesn’t mean he is a supporter of the Christian values. Hitler too had the same stance on these issues, for goodness’ sake, but that doesn’t make him a defender of Christianity. You could easily tell his real identity if you bother to expand your tunnel vision and look at the entire picture!

Since the moment he got elected, four years ago, I live in a constant state of bewilderment. The stink and ugliness he brought to this world is unbearable to me. Most people, after the initial shock, got used to it. They became numb and desensitized to evil, their senses are now dulled and they witness his sordid behaviour with no outrage and indignation. He normalized evil. He normalized hate, injustice, lying, incompetence, threats, ignorance, violence, racism, nepotism, conflict of interest, tax avoidance, abuse of power, obstruction of justice, name-calling, contempt for experts, intolerance, misogyny, scapegoating, chauvinism, attacking the free press, pardoning criminal allies, mocking the weak and praising the strong, greed, you name it, to the extent that people no longer perceive his dereliction. They know he’s morally reprehensible and some of them will even admit it but he doesn’t offend their senses enough to make them outraged. Let alone sick or nauseous. When he was bragging about his sexual assault on women he was right in the way he described our dire reality: “I can do anything”. After two thousand of years of teaching that character matters, now the Christian Church all of a sudden tells us it’s not relevant anymore, providing the Church gets the power and dominant control of the culture. The end justifies the means is their latest addition to the Nicene creed. To think that such a terrible outcome where evil became normalized and people are no longer appalled by this vile moral landscape was done in the name of Jesus by a saviour (geeeez) of Christianity is ludicrous and reveals the rot, corruption and hypocrisy that lie at the heart of the Christian people nowadays. As far as I am concerned I will never get used to this despicable state of affairs. I will never cave in. I will never get numb and insensitive to this horror. Political is personal, not only the other way around. Whenever I come across stupidity or malice I feel my world is shrinking and it’s under attack. Stupidity suffocates me. Literally. It sends me into a frenzy state of despair. For the last four years the stench and the toxicity of his words poisoned my world and made it unfit to breathe. And the idea that this stink was brought into our world by Christians and my former brothers in faith and they are willing to do it again gives me the chills and horrifies me. They destroyed any notion of accountability by succumbing to a vessel theology, where their greater good is all that matters and so the vessel becomes irrelevant if not outright inerrant. If it rings a bell with you is because you heard all that before. You and six millions dead Jews. Heil mein Führer! Heil Hitler! The King Cyrus argument is just a poor rationalizaton of their corrupted soul. It was employed before for the likes of Hitler, Stalin, Franco, Pol Pot, Pinochet, Mussolini, you name it. And the lesser of two evils argument, employed by supposedly better Christians, who will follow him not wholeheartedly but by holding their nose, is not even worth refuting. Not being able to stop their glorious marching toward abyss while they follow their new Pied Piper is painful to say the least. The notion that Donald Trump saves Christianity under attack is surreal and farcical. If you manage to see through their denial and the charade they are playing, you will find, in most of them, the old dream of a theocracy still alive and kicking and their crave for revenge and power in a cultural war they are losing and about which Jesus made clear He took no part in :“My kingdom is not of this world.” (John 18:36) Two thousand years ago Judas didn’t get the point and he wanted to force His hand and make Him the King of this world. At all costs. Now the Christians fall into the same trap. Make the Christendom Great Again. Bring Jesus to Washington once and for all. Let’s tear down “the wall of separation between church and state” from our founding Constitution. The inability of the self-righteous to restrain their religious hegemony and not to impose their ideals on other people is well known and documented. Fortunately for them, in just a month, they can receive their share of the intoxicating power they so much desire and their thirty pieces of silver….

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Just laid my hands on a copy of The Mueller Report. As everybody knows by now, while it doesn’t state that Trump himself colluded with Russia in order to tilt US elections (even though they don’t use the term collusion, apparently it’s Trump’s defensive term), the report doesn’t exonerate him either. “The evidence we obtained about the President’s actions and intent presents difficult issues that prevent us from conclusively determining that no criminal conduct occurred. Accordingly, while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.“  I started reading the report out of curiosity and with the idea in mind that, giving its complexity and technicality, it could take my mind off personal anguish. I ended up dnfing the report as a whole (after all I don’t need to read 450 pages of technicalities in their entirety in order to get over somebody, one or two chapters will suffice) ( kidding) but I did have a flick through the rest of it. And boy, I cannot believe the extent to which the Russian meddling in the 2016 election is documented in the report. How on earth the cosmical joke that is Trump could say: “People came to me, they think it’s Russia (n.m. behind hacking DNC’s emails). I have president Putin, he just said it’s not Russia. President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today.” It’s beyond my understanding why the hell after such a professional, thorough and well-documented report about the Russian interference (some clearly linked to the government) the president of United States fails to take a stand and publicly condemn Russia. I wonder what all Trump’s supporters will do now while the official report is out. They could live in denial ignoring one huge elephant in the room, but they cannot ignore a room filled up with them trashing their resistance to truth.

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Ce distanta infima intre normalitate si patologie. Insanitatea intelectuala se afla la doar un cuvant distanta (all – some). Common grounds my ass. Doua specii total diferite, care nu au nimic in comun, decat faptul ca impart acelasi teritoriu si acelasi fel de aparenta trupeasca. Ceea ce trumpetii numesc chitibusareala si pedanterie lingvistica, ceilalti numesc rigurozitate. Daca as primi cate un dolar pentru fiecare data cand am purtat genul asta de conversatie, as fi milionar. Bloody hell, we need the patience of a saint…

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Once again, his comment on what opinion means is spot on. I’m always at a loss when a dispute reaches deadlock and when faced with a self-evident truth, as O’Brien would put it, in front of a moon rock, the other says in a pacifying and tolerant way “let’s agree to disagree, you call that a rock, I call that a piece of cheese, we are both entitled to a different opinion”. No nooo noooo no nooo. No fucking way. It is a moon rock. Opinion is something else, this is facts. You don’t have an opinion when you say the clock shows 9:15 or today is Thursday. It’s a fact. You don’t have an opinion when you say the earth is not flat but round. It’s a fact. You don’t have an opinion when you say Kevin Spacey played the lead in “House of Cards”. It’s a fact. You do have an opinion when you say Kevin Spacey is one of the best actors of all time. It’s not a fact.

/əˈpɪnjən/ noun

noun: opinion; plural noun: opinions

  1. a view or judgement formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

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N-am nici cea mai mica intentie sa iau apararea democratilor. It’s none of my business. Ma distreaza doar perspectiva asta puerila, reductionista, pe care am mai auzit-o de cateva ori in privinta negocierilor in general. E intotdeauna vina Celuilalt ca opune rezistenta si nu se ajunge la un agreement. Deadlockul nu se datoreaza niciodata rezistentei pe care o opui tu, ci doar rezistentei pe care o opune Celalalt. Nu spun ca unii nu pot fi mai incapatanati decat ceilalti, ca unii nu pot fi mai putin dispusi sa cedeze teren si sa faca compromisuri decat ceilalti. Spun doar ca, atunci cand nu ajungi la un acord, frazarea “ei sunt de vina, nu eu; ei nu cedeaza, nu eu; ei nu renunta, nu eu” etc nu are sens. Poate fi spusa, simetric, de ambele parti.

Cand o sa il auzim pentru prima oara pe Trump pronuntand cuvintele:“este vina mea”, pariez ca o sa intre brusc in ictus apoplectic si o sa cada secerat, pe loc, inconjurat de un stol de porci zburatacind…

 

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Una din putinele calitati pe care le am, de cand ma stiu, este rezistenta totala la bullshit. La nonsense. La basini sau gogosi, cum le spun eu ireverentios. Spiritul critic. Circumspectia fata de fad-uri intelectuale. Fata de idei digerate de altii. Fata de metanaratiuni care se vor atotcuprinzatoare. Este unul din motivele pentru care nu ma alatur backlashului idiotic pe care il practica dreapta conservatoare fata de establishmentul politic cultural al vremii, si mai ales fata de stanga contemporana. Nu pentru ca nu e nimic de criticat in asezarea lumii de acum si nu pentru ca ideologia stangii ar fi fara de cusur. Far from it. Doar ca demonizarea stangii din circle jerk-urile internetistice, devenita, gratie mimetismului, mainstream intelectual, nu poate fi facuta fara sa inghiti, pe langa opiniile de bun simt, tone de nonsens. Ideea asta ca Raul de care are parte Fiinta poarta insemnele stangii (cu tropii binecunoscuti: politici identitare, feminism, corectitudine politica, postmodernism, globalizare, multiculturalism, politici de gen, egalitarianism etc) e reductionista pana la prostie. Raul nu stie geografie. Raul este democratic. Nu face discriminari. Este peste tot si vine de peste tot. Din toate directiile posibile. Efectul de echo chamber se instaleaza doar daca renunti la spiritul critic si la detectorul de minciuni si bullshit cu care ne-a inzestrat Dumnezeu cand ne-a dat darul gandirii.

But I digress. Nu despre contracultura dreptei reactionare, perfect legitima, voiam sa trancanesc. Ci despre trumpeti. Eroul meu preferat cand vine vorba de demantelarea BS-ului, a nonsensului, este James O’Brian. Neputinta lui funciara de a trece peste un bullshit livrat cu nonsalanta, incapatanarea cu care nu se lasa pacalit de tehnicile evazive, de dodging-ul celor intervievati, nerabdarea pe care o are cand acestia se duc pe piste falacioase si eficienta de a-i repune back on track-ul problematic, inversunarea de a opune faptele si logica vacuitatii impresiilor sunt admirabile. He can be a bit of a bully, dar numai daca iti bagi capul in gura leului pretinzand ca esti pe un teren safe si ca stii mai bine, in timp ce furnizezi verbiaj in loc de argumente. Vagueness instead of semantic clarity. Un exemplu magistral de caracter alunecos, de dodging, de shifting goalposts la nesfarsit, de imposibilitatea de a corner-ui un trumpet sa admita ca e gresit si ca e lipsit de onestitate intelectuala, este urmatorul:

Oh boy!

May the Lord open!

Minds and souls.

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Motto: “There are two types of people: those who try to win and those who try to win arguments. They are never the same.” (Nassim Nicholas Taleb – The Bed of Procrustes)

In orice relationare este inevitabil sa ajungi si in zone unde armonia dispare si in care opiniile diverg. No surprise here. Lumea nu e guvernata de Unu, ci de Multiplu. Ar fi fost o surpriza daca era invers, daca negotul nostru sufletesc si intelectual ar fi sfarsit intr-o inganare debila in care toti am spune, crede si simti la unison acelasi lucru. Ce e surprinzator, pentru mine, este insa altceva. Modul la fel de distinct in care gestionam Multiplul. Modul diferit in care ne confruntam opiniile concurente. Pentru unii confruntarea de idei e despre adevar si urmeaza niste reguli stricte de validare a argumentelor, in timp ce pentru altii e despre putere iar regulile sunt pastrate doar in masura in care le servesc interesul, devenind fluide pana la disolutie. Now. Tendinta de a forta plasticitatea argumentativa, de a trage de un argument intr-o parte sau alta si a-l face mai elastic decat s-ar cuveni e comuna, ne este proprie tuturor. Fair enough. Nimeni nu-si paraseste punctul de vedere la prima pala de vant a unei instante critice. Nu e nimic gresit (unless you make too much use of it, unless you abuse) sa te reinventezi epistemic si sa incerci un alt unghi de atac, o alta perspectiva atunci cand iti este demonstrata precaritatea unghiului din care ataci problema. La fel de comun tuturor e si orgoliul ranit atunci cand trebuie sa iti reconsideri pozitia si sa dai castig de cauza celuilalt. Nimeni nu exulta cand este nevoit sa admita ca a gresit si reluctanta cu care oamenii renunta la un punct de vedere dovedit subred, mai ales in the heat of a debate, e proprie tuturor. Altfel spus, suntem toti tributari, to some extent, aceleiasi psihologii auto-protectoare fata de sinele fragil. Nu e ca si cum, in prima categorie, a celor ghidati de adevar nu de putere, intr-o confruntare de idei, s-ar afla niste masini inferentiale reci, perfecte, incapabile de afect sau imune la vanitati. Doar ca in timp ce acestia pot transcende psihologia si face astfel incat confruntarea sa fie totusi despre adevar, cei din a doua categorie sunt guvernati exclusiv de psihologie, de dinamica puterii, de neputinta de a concede teritoriu pierdut.

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Cand si cand dai peste un astfel de individ, impermeabil la argument si pe care nu poti sa-l convingi de nimic. Sub niciun chip. Beton impenetrabil. Caramida. Zid epistemic. Nu pentru ca ai fi lipsit de persuasiune sau pentru ca argumentele tale nu sunt suficient de constrangatoare pentru a-l dovedi. Ci pentru ca individul este, ca sa construiesc un barbarism, nedovedibil. N-ai putea sa-l dovedesti nici daca ar trebui sa demonstrezi ca apa este uda. Nu exista nimic care l-ar dovedi. Daca l-ai intreba, in virtutea principiului falsificarii al lui Popper, ce ar trebui sa contina argumentul care sa-l faca sa isi schimbe opinia pe care o apara cu indarjire, nu ar sti ce sa iti raspunda. Pentru ca nu exista asa ceva. Intruparea exemplara a acestei categorii, the epitome of, ca sa continui barbaria anglizanta, o regasim zilele astea in persoana lui Trump si a celor care il sprijina entuziast. Poti inlocui bineinteles persoana lui Trump cu cea a lui Farage, Le Pen, Vadim, Dragnea, Badea, Ponta, Antonescu, Gadea, a sefului tau, a trollului de pe forum,  a colegului de munca, a fratelui, a pastorului din biserica, a prietenului, a parintilor, a exului, a vecinului etc, a oricarui altcuiva care are un negot dubios cu adevarul. Ceea ce au in comun este caracterul alunecos, faptul ca nici un argument nu se lipeste de ei, ca nu poti sa-i corner-uiesti argumentativ si sa inchizi confruntarea cu un q.e.d. Cand si cand livrezi sau esti martorul unui knock-down argument, al unui argument atat de constrangator incat te astepti sa ii vezi amutiti, adunandu-se de pe jos, bucatele, bucatele. Checkmate. Knockout. Yielding. Complete surrender. Throwing in the towel. Ti-ai gasit. Trumpetii sunt bine mersi, neclintiti, reinventandu-se la nesfarsit, ca o pasare phoenix imuna la silogism, din unghiuri si mai aiuritoare ca inainte. Moving the goalposts incessantly. Chestiunea nu e ca reusesc sa iasa din sah, legitim, prin refutarea argumentului tau, ci ca refuza realitatea categoriei de sah-mat. Caracterul definitiv al acestuia. Muta calul, aiurea, pe diagonala si il interpun blatant intre tine si regele lor. Muta nebunul, ilicit, in linie dreapta si ies din sahul constrangator. There. Infrangere evitata. Partida relansata. All is well in Gilead. May the Lord open.

“I didn’t say that. And even if I did, I didn’t mean that. And even if I did mean that, you don’t understand what I am saying. And even if you do understand, it’s not a big deal. And even if it is, others have said worse. And even if they haven’t I am right and you are wrong… “

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Ceea ce descriu aici e o forma de injustitie, de abuz, de violenta. Smintitoare. Daca am incerca sa translatam tipul asta de confruntare, din zona inferentei intr-o zona mai mundana, fluidizarea asta nepermisa a regulilor nu ar putea fi facuta cu impunitate. Acolo trisatul ar fi sanctionat cu un pumn si cu un nas spart. Violenta ar fi reglata fara probleme, barbateste, prin retaliere, prin violenta. In zona inferentei insa, un trumpet poate spune ca pipa de pe masa nu este o pipa, fara sa se trezeasca cu un pumn in mecla, ci doar cu pumnul tau in masa indignat. Poate infera cu impunitate ca din moment ce soarele rasare dupa cantatul cocosului, atunci rasare din cauza lui, fara sa-i poti sanctiona siluirea logicii. Poate spune, cu nerusinare, intru deplina ta exasperare, ca nu a spus ce tocmai a spus fara sa-i poti face nimic ipochimenului. Poate spune, in mod repetat, A si pretinde ca de fapt he meant B all along, vina fiind bineinteles a ta ca nu faci substitutille de rigoare hermeneutice. Poate sa isi schimbe opinia on the fly de cateva ori in aceeasi conversatie, sa faca backtracking on his previous stances, ca intr-o anarhie ideatica, neguvernata de nicio regula, fara sa-i poti sanctiona promiscuitatea intelectuala. Poate spune ca albul e negru, ca modernitatea nu e moderna, ca unu plus unu nu fac doi, ca patratul e un cerc imperfect, ca Matrix e un documentar istoric, ca numerele se gasesc in natura, ca nu poti picta un patrat alb pe un fond alb, ca pinguinul nu e o pasare, ca apa nu e cu necesitate uda, ca noaptea nu urmeaza dupa zi, ci invers. Poate spune orice si esti total dezarmat si lipsit de putere in fata infamiei lui. Pentru ca nu exista modalitati in care sa-l constrangi pe un trumpet sa admita ca e in the wrong. Si tocmai civilitatea, faptul ca nu poti regla diferendul prin violenta, ca nu poti retalia, ca nu poti raspunde abuzului cu aceeasi masura, violentei cu violenta, face ca situatia asta limita sa fie exasperanta si smintitoare. Intr-o relatie, mare parte din abuzul domestic, la asta se rezuma. La abuz epistemic, inferential. La aceasta dinamica oneroasa, dezechilibrata, instituita de necinstea si insolenta celui care abuzeaza. La mii de instante marunte in care unul calca in picioare logica, discernamantul, onestitatea, dreptatea, spre revolta si exasperarea celuilalt.

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Din descrierea mea de pana aici se desprinde cu usurinta portretul robot al unui trumpet. Trasatura definitorie a acestuia este lipsa de onestitate intelectuala. Reaua credinta. Este semnatura lui indelebila. Faptul ca va exaspereaza afirmand tot felul de bazaconii va poate face sa credeti ca este prost. Nu e obligatoriu. Prostiile pe care le auzim de la un trumpet pot veni intradevar de la deficientele lui intelectuale, insa cel mai adesea vor veni de la lipsa lui de onestitate. Delictul lui intelectual este de fapt un delict de caracter. Sursa abuzului nu este prostia, ci lipsa de caracter. Daca zgarii putin suprafata prostiei, dai peste altceva: incapatanare, vanitate, perfidie, narcisism, orgoliu patologic. Cum altfel iti poti explica toxicitatea unei relatii pe care o ai cu cineva indeobste inteligent? Cum altfel iti poti explica inferenta stramba cu care te copleseste cineva care stapaneste acelasi aparat tehnic de rationare ca si tine? In toate relationarile toxice si disfunctionale pe care le avem cu iubiti, prieteni, rude, sefi, necunoscuti, totul se rezuma, in cele din urma, la o intrebare simpla: este prost sau canalie? Bineinteles ca cineva poate fi, in mod tragic, ambele, dar din experienta mea, este mai degraba una sau alta. Contorsionarile logice si fundaturile in care sfarseste un trumpet nu tin de o neputinta funciara a acestuia de a rationa corect (daca asa ar sta lucrurile, ar insemna, ca e nevinovat) ci de orgoliul lui nemasurat, de incapatanarea lui patologica. In other words, he’s more of an ass than a dumb chicken.

Now. Discursul meu poate fi chestionat din mai multe unghiuri. I se poate reprosa ca este maniheist intr-un mod nerealist, ca este subiectiv, partinitor, ca presupune, de la sine inteleasa, atat integritatea mea intelectuala si morala, cat si indignitatea celorlalti, fara insa sa le demonstreze vreodata. Fair enough. Mult mai importanta insa mi se pare alta obiectie. Mi se mai poate reprosa ca toata discursarea mea se bazeaza pe o conditie psihologica – lipsa de onestitate – presupusa adevarata, dar nedemonstrata, si care, daca ar fi refutata ar demola intreaga mea diagnoza, intreaga mea constructie ideatica prin care incerc sa explic trumpismul. Lipsa de onestitate presupune constiinta transgresiunii morale, a inselarii, a perfidiei, presupune o atitudine in raspar cu ceea ce cunosti. Stii ca este A, dar pretinzi ca este B. De unde stim noi insa ca in miile de instante in care trumpetii sustin bazaconiile de care vorbeam sunt lipsiti de onestitate? Poate ca ei performeaza acrobatiile acestea logice onesti, in good faith, convinsi, in naivitatea lor, ca au dreptate. Conjectura mea, ca ceea ce se naste din relationarea cu ei este o forma de ABUZ, de violenta, se bazeaza, obligatoriu, pe reaua lor credinta, pe faptul ca acestia STIU ca NU au dreptate si se incapataneaza sa sustina un neadevar, dintr-un deficit de caracter. Daca trumpetii ar crede in mod autentic ca au dreptate, ceea ce la urma urmei e propriul oricarei fiinte umane, chiar daca se inseala, atunci nu mai putem vorbi de abuz. Putem vorbi de exasperarea si frustrarea noastra, de tormentul nostru intelectual, dar nu mai putem vorbi de abuz. Raspunsul s-ar muta dinspre un capat al spectrumului spre celalalt, dinspre deficitul moral spre deficitul intelectual, dinspre canalie spre prost. Trumpetul ar fi mai degraba un imbecil decat o lichea.

(4:05 “There’s no proof of anything. There’s no proof of anything. But it could very well be.” He needs a lecture on Bertrand Russell’s teapot analogy for the philosophic burden of proof. 😀 )

I strongly disagree. O sa ma intorc putin la inceputul discursarii mele. Divergentele dintre noi si ceilalti acopera o paleta larga de diferente – diferente in preferinte, in judecati de valoare, in opinii estetice, in asteptari, in interpretari, in definirea termenilor etc. Nu ma intereseaza insa sa le inventariez din punctul asta de vedere, ci doar dintr-un unghi relevant in chestiunea onestitatii intelectuale. Din punctul asta de vedere, dam peste o bifurcatie simpla, avand doua tipuri de divergente. α) Uneori opiniile noastre divergente se refera la chestiuni complexe, echivoce, complicate, cu zeci de fatete posibile, imposibil de redus la scheme simple fara a le mutila esenta, care suporta interpretari posibile multiple, fiind deci generoase cu spatiul pe care il ofera pentru opinii contrare. Cazuri care permit, in mod rezonabil, puncte de vedere diferite fara sa contrarieze bunul simt intelectual. Cand ai divergente cu cineva in marginea unei chestiuni evident complexe stii ca opiniile celuilalt, oricat de diferite de ale tale si oricat de inadecvate ti s-ar parea, sunt legitime, daca se pastreaza in range-ul opiniilor posibile. Ca sa folosim aceeasi metafora a sahului, oricat de contrarianta ti s-ar parea pozitionarea lui pe tabla de sah, ea este din aria posibilelor. Daca ai de-a face cu un trumpet, una din posibilitati este ca acesta sa ajunga sa sustina un punct de vedere contrar tie nu din convingere ci din spirit de fronda, din orgoliu, din rea credinta. Dar nu poti sti. La fel de bine, data fiind complexitatea cazului, poate fi autentic in ceea ce sustine. Gresit poate, dar genuin. Since you can’t tell, there’s no room for outrage, you cannot call him out for being a contrarian or intelectually dishonest and you can’t see his epistemic positioning as abusive, even when that is or may be the case. β) Uneori opiniile noastre divergente se refera insa, dimpotriva, la chestiuni simple, univoce, usor de inteles, care nu permit interpretari multiple, care nu ofera un spatiu de manevra larg pentru opinii divergente, care te forteaza sa te pozitionezi intr-un anumit fel. Intr-o astfel de situatie, data fiind simplitatea cazului, nu-l mai poti credita cu buna credinta pe cel care contesta un adevar manifest si sustine o bazaconie. It’s obvious now that we have an instance of arguing in bad faith. Este exact punctul nodal in care trumpismul se transforma in abuz. Cand contesti blatant evidenta. Cand cobori atat de jos nivelul discutiei, pozitionandu-te in raspar cu poncife indeobste acceptate de toata lumea. Aici se afla cheia raspunsului nostru la intrebarea “prost sau canalie?”, in aceasta impartire a divergentelor. Daca in primul caz, data fiind complexitatea chestiunilor disputate, nu-l poti clasa niciodata pe celalalt in tagma indignitatii, a trumpismului, chiar si daca ar face parte din ea, in al doilea caz, data fiind simplitatea situatiilor in disputa, nu ai de ales. Exempli gratia. Una e sa chestionezi varianta oficial-canonica a Holocaustului, metodologia de calcul a cifrelor, a motivatiilor exterminarii, a modalitatilor in care ea s-a petrecut, a responsabilitatilor celor implicati etc (chestiune complexa – α) si alta e sa negi genocidul in sine, sa negi ca Holocaustul a avut loc (chestiune simpla – β). Una e revizionismul istoric al lui Paul Goma si alta e negationismul lui David Irving. Prima e o pozitionare controversata, la limita antisemitismului, dar intrutotul legitima, din aria posibilelor, intr-o chestiune complexa, a doua e o pozitionare absurda, nelegitima, contestarea unei evidente istorice, intr-o chestiune simpla. Sau, una e sa spui ca in ciuda profilului controversat si imoral pe care il are Trump, este potrivit in postura de presedinte (chestiune complexa – α) si alta e sa spui ca e un personaj onest, strain de impostura, mai degraba victima a fakenews-urilor decat sursa a lor (chestiune simpla – β). Prima e pragmatism, legitim, oricat de narod mi s-ar parea mie, intr-o chestiune complexa (profilul potrivit pentru guvernare – does morality has any bearing on leadership qualities?) a doua e trumpism ignar, intr-o chestiune simpla (evaluarea morala a unei persoane – is Donald Trump really a genuine person or an impostor?). In the same vein, Cartea sfanta a musulmanilor, Coranul, opereaza hermeneutic la fel, cu doua nivele de complexitate epistemologica, impartind versetele in versete muhkam, care sunt simple, clare si care pot fi interpretate doar intr-un singur fel si versete muttashabih, complexe, care contin alegorii si pot fi interpretate, de catre oameni, in mai multe feluri, sub rezerva ca doar Dumnezeu este exegetul ultim, Cel care cunoaste interpretarea canonica. “[O Muhammad], it is God who sent down to you the  Book; in it are verses that are precise, clear statements, which accept no interpretation – they are the foundation of the Book – and others that are unspecific, allegorical, which may have several possibilities. Those whose hearts are perverse, follow the unclear statements in pursuit of their own mischievous goals by interpreting them in a way that will suit their own purpose.” Quran 3:7

Revenind la intrebarea noastra: de unde stim ca trumpetii nu sunt genuini, ci lipsiti de onestitate intelectuala atunci cand ne improasca cu inferenta lor stramba? De unde stim ca nu sunt imbecili autentici care chiar cred aiurelile pe care le spun ci mai degraba fairly intelligent people acting in bad faith? Simplu, in relationarile si dezbaterile noastre, ne deplasam back and forth intre cele doua categorii – complexe si simple – de care am vorbit. Inevitably, you’ll atomise a statement, you’ll break down an argument to its smallest pieces. Astfel ca, in orice conversatie vei ajunge inevitabil si la chestiuni simple, cu adevaruri manifeste, in care pozitionarea stramba a celuilalt va fi astfel revelatoare. Isi va demasca interesul pentru putere si nu pentru adevar. Din orgoliu si incapatanare va sfarsi prin a sustine tot felul de bazaconii aiuritoare, in aceste chestiuni simple, care il demasca, care ii tradeaza impostura, dat fiind caracterul self-explanatory al acestora. In orice disputa, fii atent prin urmare la acesti atomi conversationali, la aceste chestiuni simple, univoce, care nu suporta interpretari multiple, in care, prin pozitiile aberante pe care le va apara, isi va revela identitatea. It’s a simple technique that never fails to reveal someone’s true colours. Abuzul este resimtit ca abuz din aceasta batjocorire obvioasa a adevarului. Blatant. Pe fata. Pentru ca poate. Daca ar exista un feedback instant de stabilire a veridicitatii unei propozitii sau onestitatii unei opinii, ca in cazul ordaliei divine din Evul Mediu prin care se stabilea adevarul sau justitia, atunci aceasta batjocorire in care se instaleaza trumpetul nu ar mai fi posibila. Perfidia trumpetului se naste din faptul simplu ca poate sa conteste evidenta fara sa-i poti face nimic. Mai ales in discutiile one on one, cand nu va admite niciodata ca e nerezonabil in pozitionarea lui, intru exasperarea ta.

Ajungem astfel la un alt unghi din care iti poti da seama ca ai de-a face cu un trumpet, de data aceasta, plecand dinspre psihologia ta. Vei sti ca ai de-a face cu un trumpet, cand in relationarea ta cu cineva, ajungi constant in aceste ape tulburi, chinuitoare, toxice, si vei simti puternic nevoia “to go public”, dorinta sa nu mai vorbesti cu el decat in prezenta unor terti, unor martori, sau in prezenta unui recorder. Pentru ca deep inside trumpetul stie ca nu are dreptate, stie ca nu va mai putea fi alunecos daca va fi confruntat cu propriile declaratii, ca inferenta lui stramba poate fi usor deconstruita pana la layer-ul final al imposturii, stie ca daca va permite unor terti sa cantareasca cele doua puncte de vedere concurente, nu mai poate maslui talerul. In confruntarile one on one, isi poate permite luxul insolentei; in confruntarile publice, in fata unei jurizari externe, neutre, poate doar sa se eschiveze schimband subiectul sau sa duca in derizoriu chestiunea. Exasperarea si nevoia ta de a-l confrunta public e un semn ca ai de-a face cu un trumpet si in acelasi timp da masura autenticitatii tale. Nu a adevarului spuselor tale, ci a onestitatii tale. Pentru ca daca ai sti ca esti tu insuti un impostor, ca rastalmacesti ce ti se spune, ca negi sau reformulezi constant ceea ce ai spus, shifting the goalposts all the time, ca inferezi tot felul de absurditati, ca negi evidente copilaresti, nu ti-ai dori sa te supui privirii unor terti, nu ai avea indrazneala sa te livrezi judecatii publice. Sau sa iti imortalizezi spusele on tape, for future reference. Un trumpete nu va avea insa curajul sa se expuna altei priviri externe. Because deep down he knows he’s a fraud and appearance is all that matters to him. He trades saving his soul for saving his face. God save us all! Pe noi de abuzurile isolentei lui, pe el de el insusi…

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N.B. Postul acesta este despre trumpetii recenti. Sa nu uitam insa un trumpet avant-la-lettre, pe care am practicat rezistenta si diagnoza. Auto-citez dintr-un post despre onestitate din 2012, peste care am dat intamplator:

“Magistral. Ca de nspe ori in discutiile cu el regret ca nu avem martori sau un recorder.”

Ei bine, nu conteaza ca o stim amandoi, conteaza sa nu o spuna. Aparentele conteaza. Imparatul “nu” e gol cat timp nu o spune nimeni. Impostura trebuie jucata pana la capat. Caragiale. Ionesco. La un loc.”


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literatura e efortul inepuizabil de a transforma viaţa în ceva real

The priest: Aren't you afraid of hell? J. Kerouac: No, no. I'm more concerned with heaven.