repression the only way out for morality?

I just question the enterprise of thinking like this. But maybe that’s how I’m programmed. I’m a lazy, short-sighted, self-interested individualist capitalist pig, and proud of it. It’s my response to the doctrine that life is short and brutish anyway, and this biological doctrine was authored long before statesmen put quill to paper. I grew up believing John when he said: You tell me it’s the institution / Well you know / You better free your mind instead.

When I think of the discontents who busy their minds with political theory, absent a phase prompted by schoolwork, I wonder whether they are neglecting other more pressing matters, like all the low hanging fruit unplucked in their OWN LIVES that continues to go unplucked while they take on massive macro-systemic issues of country and planet. I don’t mean this as an ad hom. I’m rather advancing the idea that macro-thinking is counter productive. Agile thinking (focusing on what’s in front of you, selective blindness) is more rational for humans who are pursuing happiness.

As I get older I am continuously surprised by the harsh cruelty and majestic flaws of the human condition and human animal. My empathy for others grows and my awareness spreads to places I wish it wouldn’t. But still, in the end, the words haunt me: But if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao / You ain’t going to make it with anyone anyhow

And that’s all we really want to do isn’t it? Before it’s too late? Make it with someone. Start there.

And for all the little piggies life is getting worse / always having dirt to play around in

Then Manson comes to give the piggies a damn good whacking, but you can’t smack the pigness off a pig no matter how hard you hit 'em. So you might as well love 'em instead, and be the best pig you can be.

And if you go talking about repression, don’t you know that you can count me out.


 Exactly: this is such a formal argument for it"s own sake, so obvious, gotta hand it to you , that, it's obviousness shows a kind of intrinsic truth, with or without homework.  Therefore  I will just disagree, to agree only on one interpretation: the other can be found when the teeter goes totter. Which will make me crap out, or cop out if not a gamble.  But a calculated one, if it is, and not just to give an impression of trying to cover both basis.

Nice post, style and content both.
John,john…thing is if people Before John didn’t Think it was the institutions he would have had a hellava lot more trouble with the law and much of his Music would never have been put out. I don’t Think we have to choose however, either to take Everything, even the distant stuff, as a given, or our own contribution to our problems. Not saying how or even if one should divvy up one’s time between activism or even voting and getting what one wants for one’s self. Also just the way Elvis, to go back in time, moved his body, since he was a charismatic White guy, changed a lot indirectly. If you are freer in your body and can allow certain movements, this allows thinking to change. So a quite selfish non-political act no doubt led to bodyminds to be more open in certain ways, and this led to Changes in what was considered possible, including obviously by John.

Loved the unplucked fruit metaphor. Hear, hear.

An related experience. I noticed in the parts of the black Community I became friends with that, for example, a kid would get in trouble in school or with the law. Even after very critically looking at police and school behavior for elements of racism and putting up a potentially (but not Always) very critical outward front with the relevent White folks, when that kid got home he or she was told what he or she needed to do and not do and was treated not as a victim - unless that truly was the only or primary factor - but as someone who needed to take responsibility, and not fuck up. It was a dual positioning, not an either or. The Children did not get to say, but you thought that cop was racist. yeah, but what the hell were you doing down on the train tracks in the first Place.

When you happen to find yourself on the wrong side of the tracks, it isn’t always a matter of choice. Sometimes you just happen to be there.
After finding out what the wrong side means, then it becomes a problem. A problem either accepted, by trying to redefine right from wrong, or rejected, by either staying in the neighborhood, or trying to find a way of getting out of it.

 If you went there to play, or stay, then it's not reprehensible. 

 In this scenario repression is a matter of coincidental factors edging in.  If a kid, who has gotten to the wrong side, but managed to fit in, may even resent any effort to dislodge him, to the "right" side of the tracks.  Right or wrong are reversible.

And even if they are not, as in certain special cases of politiicising experience, one never really can tell the pigs from others,only from the point of view the right attitude. Attitude is not necessarily a function of understanding, but of the heart. It’s a focused kind of silent understanding, which exists in the ghettoes of people’s mind, one of feeling, one of acceeding to overbearing insecurity, one that can singularly stand on it’s own, and can treat others, as they would likely treated. At this point, leaving their ego at the the doorstep. People here have existential preoccupaations of the literal kind, leaving little time to burn that midnight oil. They become very early aware of that.

I was talking about being on or near the rail tracks, which is something I did as a kid. It was illegal, clearly posted and somewhat dangerous. So my Point was that the parents, in this instance, reacted to a systematic abuse - where, say, black kids get pulled in where White kids might be warned, or maybe the officer threatened them, etc. IOW on the one hand the parents do criticize the system and Lennon was wrong it is not just about changing your head. But then internally, in the family, the same parents would demand that their Children not go there, not take such risks, not break the laws. It wasn’t either or, it was both and.

You seem to be using tracks metaphorically. I was using it literally and if my kid Went down there I would get upset. Whatever his or her intentions.

It seems like you are describing a meta or transcendent attitude, which is fine, but can be present with the attitudes I was expressing, I Believe.

 Moreno: right: I was looking at it more as a metaphor for reasons of repressiveness, where the values can be turned around as a consequence of changing attituides towards it.  I meant to express, that it's not always the situation, but the reaction, the attitude toward it, that can seemongly reverse the scenario.

OK, I wasn’t sure if I was taking your post in the right spirit. I agree with this, I Think. It’s at a fairly abstract level, so I can’t be sure, but I Think so.

that said…
I Think repression has failed. It just keeps seeping out somewhere else. And in today’s high technology World, one can calmly do unbelievable damage to people. someone losing Control and going off on a berserker murderous rampage, cannot come Close to the violence that can be done by signing papers, making bribes, having a meeting, pressing a button, all very calmly. We have to get in to the heart of the problem. And we assume this cannot be solved, so we encourage people to be their own jailers.

And which ones listen to that?
And which ones do not?

This thread has done a huge glissade and jete into nonsense. Wish you were as good at it as Lennon, who said, “I can write that crap too…” :smiley:

Liz: as far as it goes, there is a tendency for themes to go off track, but these branches, however irrelevant and useless they seem on first notice, always can be pulled together on some level. I believe, that all writing have redeeming qualities, and it is that which is to be looked for, as far as consistency, and association is concerned. One thing is for sure, repressive attitudes, techniques and trends can be seen in most all of the blogs here, and whether, as Moreno points out in his more literal interpretation, or, as the intent can be seen post sriptively, as more abstract, it really does not matter. Your blog describing the various historical and political tie ins in the slScotus decision was very insightful. Admitting not only repressive-ness leaking into the various institutions which we hold dear, the courts, the media, the law enforcement, the military, by the use of intrusive technical scrutiny, in direct violation of rights to privacy, a derivative of the constitution, these tie ins show patterns of unlawful govvernment interference.

Is it a crisis in the very law of the land? No. It is an attitude people who have seen themselves as loosing ground in this society developed. This is indisputable. Attitudes basically are personal views culminating in social movements, such as the patriots of just recent history, the 99% disenchanted of the great recession, the large homeless populations, victims of corporate and ponzi scheme greed, corruption on all levels, the immigration/drug problem , terrorism and its aftermath, the middle east wars, the chinese economic espionage on US industries, illegal political contributions, the right to own and bear arms controversy, the list is almost endless. What is important to note, that people have always gone along with the impression that the Constitution like some sacred cow, can protect individual citizens by virtue of the ink that’s printed on it, forgetting the fact, that a vast number of citizens are excluded from it’s protective cloak. An example is equal opportunity. The act was put into place, to assure all eligible workers of insurance that they will not be hindered from gaining employment, irrespective of any racial, religious, national origin, type of profiling. However, in times of economic hardship, where super qualified people settle for underpaid jobs, vying against illegal aliens, the crisis is not a political/legal one, but one where equal opportunity being a secondary consideration, points to the shifting alliances of non caring home based corporations.

The faith of people in the country’s ability to keep jobs at home, and prevent companies to source out, is another issue undermining the credibility of trust that has also eroded. This is critical to some, and when repression becomes systemic, it almost seems like a thin veneer of a change in direction,but what it reaally is, is a dramatic shift in policy.

As large and prosperous the US is, it’s progressive cyclical ups and downs, is a reflection of profit taking, after a period of over-valuation. With Reagan, de regulation encouraged this, and I bet every time there is a run up, those who allow things like this to happen, only consider the upside, and don’t have much regard for those, who can’t take their profit before the inevitable downturn. Dramatic loss of values follow, and then, another period of uncertainty and fingerpointing begins.

This is at the heart of the system, and discouraging wild speculative fever is somehow akin to un americanism. If this is not a critical and dire state of affairs, it is because it can always be downplayed as just the passing of another economic event… But it doesn’t mention the fact, that many victims are left in it’s wake, because the disenfranchised become only another statistic, and the whole imbroglio seemingly is woven into an acceptable scenario of the gold rush mentality that has to this day survived, almost becoming a mythological social heritage.

Why any forum goes downhill, which I don’t believe is quite the real case,l, is because there is, as Moreno noticed, a mix up in interpreting the literal and the abstract, wherein, truly, even if this happens, down the line they could and often are realigned. So there is hope, both, in the description of what may be going on, and the actual testament of it. John lennon did have a message, and his words describe a time when some of these very issues were song about, their lyrics sometimes hidden with meaning. Pregnant, relevant to those who gave ear to listen.

The root of the problem is crime, if we reduce crime, we reduce the need to violate our rights.

Easy. The best way to reduce crime is to reduce the number of possible crimes. So repeal laws, and make lots of stuff legal.

 But very practically the crime as symptom may be aligned with an earlier diagnosis : the vanity of greed.  This pre-forms and in a sense denies this pseudo flight into meaninglessness, as a dissemination of  seminal ideas.

 There is a difference between equivication, and equalization, by a relaxation of misidentification of  paradigmn concepts.  

 This notion can be attacked by opinions of definition, but not by the very perspectivism which  brought it into focus.

obe, I will answer you when I can give my response the time I need. In the meantime, please understand I don’t disagree with what’s so far been said, at least not in substance. Until I can focus and concentrate, then, :neutral_face: Liz

Gee I never thought about it that way.
Did you swallow the post-modernist dictionary, and do you really think what you have said means anything at all?
The trick to using a dictionary or a thesaurus is to ALSO read the definitions and make sure you know what they mean.

Hobbs: my strength comes from, and I hope it doesn’t turn into an achilles heel, the notion that I can sense the identity of the person behind the thoughts. I assure you, nothing will dissuade me from my initial impression of You as one that passes all colors. And that goes mostly for everyone on this board, because I realize the need to imprint truth, as opposed to propaganda, one of Aldous huxley’s notions of things that are wrong with this world.

 Having said that, hobbs, I really think that movements of thought can go this way and that, going sideways when it should go straight for that time, right on certain occasions, left on others, as a matter of fact, it is not matter of inconsistency, or even opportunism, it is just the very grain of the utilitarian tree of knowledge that we have grown in our field of amazing variety.  We relish in variety, and I for my part, have a nearby garden under William James tutelage, as far as religious beliefs are concerned.  Having said that, I don't necessarily excuse that from the field, nor an existentialist take on it, with which I believe it has similarity.

 Hobbs, liz has taken a position that the sort of thing that I brought up was less defensible in kind, as in substance.  There may be formal weaknesses to the thesis if repression as a way out, most of those have been proven in the court of actual day to day existence, worldwide now, but originating with the major powers.

  It can be argued that even if trains of thought have no major accusative effect on modern morality, it at least interprets the correlation.  Interpretation and those who live by that, we are often reminded, are subordinate to those who change it, historically speaking.  So every once in a while it's helpful to look at the major shakers and movers, at times of great social change as an effect of those changes in thought.  

 I personally don't feel obliged to swallow modern or postmodern attitudes toward morality, as none of us do, hobbs, we all can presumably see through the value of propaganda these days, and the emergent philosophies of adjacent apologetics, which try to explain the effective but not the causitive factors.

 However facts are facts, they speak for themselves, undeniably present to be interpreted this way, or that.  

 Another way to go about it is to agree to disagree, or negative that, in order to dissuade those, who try to elevate a conflict in a conscious awareness into an unavoidable seemingly sacred personal viewpoint.  However all this is negotiable, as the present nomenclature tries to downplay political and personal disarray by using post modern notions of such concepts as signs and signaling.  Signs are Ok, actually what we are actually trying to use language for, is in itself has been considered the perfect tableau of signs with which to get this done.

 However, fairly recently, this view has not persisted, and literal signs have been discredited by the very pragmatic concepts toward learning, by way of language games, which have lost credibility, as far as discernability is concerned as to exact and intended meaning of language.  

  Above and behind this, there are views which seem to hold that, intended meaning is indisputable on a certain pre learned level.  I am not yet totally convinced, however there is room for doubt all around, and this view seems plausible, in spite of the fact that it invites the wrought of tightly held beliefs coming from the opposite direction.

 So it is in this light, that under certain conditions, as unfashionable as it may seem, it's possible to bridge this gap, of phenomenological incredibility, with the notion that the ought should bridge this doubt, by reason of the same aforementioned utility.

That this leads to un verifiable risk of indulging in the metaphysics of questionable and seemingly passe practices such as those associated with william james, jung, polanyi, in my mind, does not automatically discredit the methodology.

 I object to my own sense of inconsistency, as much, however it is not "my" thoughts which matter at this point, since it already has been established,, that there is no clear differentiation between my own thought, from those of others.  And that is after all, the only consolation, that all deeper inquiry works in this pre-differentiated field, which may in fact correlate with the post modern structuralist approach, with which I am vaguely familiar.

I think Post-modernist, is also post-structuralist. At least structuralism provides a means by which to understand the object through a framework of understanding; whereas, PM is more nihilistic, and undermines the value of the sign and the frames of reference offered by structuralist thought.

My sister has 1-2 weeks left to live. Of course, she isn’t ‘living’ any more–she’s existing. She’s chosen to die at home. I agree with her.

I’m going down to her home tomorrow to do what I can to relieve her care-givers–my niece, my sister, and my sister-in-law–until the home hospice nurses take over. Even then, we’ll probably stay on. That’s what we do.

It’s difficult to remove oneself from the reality of life–to isolate and segregate one’s emotions, box them, and tie them up with brightly colored string–label attached. There really are no labels, no words–no matter how hard we try to arrive at them–that can abstract enough from thought, memory, love, pain, joy or any other emotion. Words, in the depths of their abstraction, don’t begin to describe or define–segregate–isolate–or act as labels to reality.

Obe, I’ll talk to you when I can. --Liz

Sorry to hear about that.
The mix of emotions are the worst thing. Guilt and shame about the relief you feel when she is finally out of the pain and suffering will be difficult.
Be strong.