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kaminoshiyo

The New Savages?

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I was listening to the news- or quasi-news- that is the Daily Show (no, I don't watch this show because it's almost nakedly biased, but my brother watches it and I can't save him) and there was a section where they are talking about Westerners who join ISIS and how evil and misguided it is.

And then a thought slipped into me head...

Many of the slanders they use against ISIS are the same slanders they used against Native Americans- a people with a very sympathetic circumstance to anyone whose morality came an inch ahead of their self-interests. Not only that, but there were people who tried to defect to the Native American way of life. These people were ostracized, penalized, and laws were sent not only against that kind of act, but marrying a Native. They were branded as savages and kidnappers. They were regarded as hyper-violent and hell-bent on the destruction of the colonial societies. And when the Native's did retaliate in kind, it was all the more proof.

And I wonder how many people fell for it back then?

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  1. Smith's Avatar
    I was going to write a lengthy response but I don't know how I feel riding the cultural relativism merry-go-round again.

    I'm not saying there's no truth to what you're getting at. I'm criticizing what comes across as a refusal to acknowledge that anything is true about the criticisms of ISIS or that of the Native Americans. It seems as if there's no real room for discussion because it appears as if you're just taking an inverted but equally hard stance. Hence, the cultural relativism.
    Updated March 1st, 2019 at 10:41 AM by Smith
  2. kaminoshiyo's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Smith
    I was going to write a lengthy response but I don't know how I feel riding the cultural relativism merry-go-round again.

    I'm not saying there's no truth to what you're getting at. I'm criticizing what comes across as a refusal to acknowledge that anything is true about the criticisms of ISIS or that of the Native Americans. It seems as if there's no real room for discussion because it appears as if you're just taking an inverted but equally hard stance. Hence, the cultural relativism.
    Well...it's not that I don't choose to acknowledge what's real. It's that I understand I don't know what's real and what's not.

    A lot of people claim to know, but they only know what they have been told or shown. People claim to have research, but there is such a thing as being well versed in misinformation. Consider the extreme pushes that went into the Iraq campaign...and then Syria. How broken the story is and yet how neatly these inconsistencies get pushed aside when a new push to action via shock or outrage is prompted.

    I brought it up because I think there's an increasing gap between reality and conception on all sides. Nikola Tesla mentioned something similar, but he was talking about how scientists were becoming increasingly reliant on mathematical projection over objective proof of a thing to fill in blanks. For this example, I'd say people are reliant more on information rather than objective proof. For instance...how can you vote on a thing you really have no depth of understanding about? And yet millions of people vote.

    My example is not a defense of Native's it's a condemnation of us. The reflex of a person when criticized is to point the finger and shift focus to the accuser- reducing their credibility. Thus their is an attempt to excuse "us" by pointing out the flaws of Natives, but whether or not Natives were flawed or not does not excuse our own actions. The classic defense is also that "everyone did it". However, everyone does not suppose to be the moral arbiter of the world. The one with the flaming sword who considers it their role, alone, to inflict violence for the sake of justice especially when we know how corrupt they are. I'm sure there are terrorists, but I am in no way convinced that they operate to the extent they are portrayed to, nor am I convinced in this cartoonish idea that they want to take over the world and make war by blowing up random, strategically meaningless targets. No one knows that all this is true, but we proceed on it because...boom...something else got blown up. A hundred different terrorists claim responsibility, but somehow it's always the big bad of the time that's at fault. Al' Qaeda, ISIS, Russia, China...vague, abstract generalities. Proof? Isn't it obvious? ISIS, that's the proof, and don't dare not support the troops. Sprinkle some crying babies and mistreated women on it also. Look how evil and corrupt their religion is. Not like our own. That's proof.

    The you have the rise of these false intellectuals like Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris who sound legit to people looking for sophisticated blabber, but under the microscope they're really just a mildly educated opinion column. Yuck... But people flock to them like they've discovered a prophet because...people tend to flock. I don't know why...

    One big gaslight to me based on the fact that people don't really stop think about what they're thinking about. I think the world would be better served if people kept this in mind...

    Be skeptical of the things you don't believe in, and twice as skeptical of the things you do.
  3. Winston's Avatar
    The metaphor fails. Native Americans were defending their tribal, ancestral land and their way of life. ISIS invented a "Caliphate" based on an interpretation of the Koran.
    A better metaphor would be the establishment of Mormonism under Joseph Smith. But even in that case, the fringe, separatist group was generally non-violent, insular and did not partake in forced conversions. Compare that to ISIS' brand of Islam that wants to expand via violent takeover of all institutions, secular and devout.

    Those that fought with, and eventually became members of First Nation peoples did so for a number of reasons. Mostly, it was shared values. Living on The Frontier changes a person. The pejorative "going native" comes to mind. I'm sure many white, Anglo folks in NYC, Chicago and Boston thought that people in The West were "savages". But, there is a BIG difference in a settler traveling along The Oregon Trail and some 20 year old buying a plane ticket to Raaqua. They both wanted a better life, but as they say, the Devil is in the details. A kid in college today knows (or should reasonably know) the consequences of their action if they give aid and comfort to a group that espouses violence to accomplish it's ideological goal. Whereas, those that joined the "savages" in the 19th Century did so mainly as ignorant happenstance of being at the the wrong place, at the wrong time.

    The "caliphate" was a bad idea, and deserves the inglorious death it received. Those that ran to it, and supported it in any way were fools of an epic stature. Excusing their behavior in any way, including faulty metaphors, dishonors the victims that died at the hands of truly evil people.
  4. Smith's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kaminoshiyo
    A lot of people claim to know, but they only know what they have been told or shown. People claim to have research, but there is such a thing as being well versed in misinformation. Consider the extreme pushes that went into the Iraq campaign...and then Syria. How broken the story is and yet how neatly these inconsistencies get pushed aside when a new push to action via shock or outrage is prompted.
    Right, and I could brush aside anything you say with the same line of logic. You've just been told and shown different things.

    And that's about as far as we can get in that model of conversation.

    I brought it up because I think there's an increasing gap between reality and conception on all sides. Nikola Tesla mentioned something similar, but he was talking about how scientists were becoming increasingly reliant on mathematical projection over objective proof of a thing to fill in blanks. For this example, I'd say people are reliant more on information rather than objective proof. For instance...how can you vote on a thing you really have no depth of understanding about? And yet millions of people vote.
    Because every individual has a voice and a right to politically express it in this country. Whether they're right, wrong, misinformed, informed, uninformed, is irrelevant.

    Nikola Tesla does point out a legitimate problem, but it's a bit vague. I know you were only going off memory here but my point is that there's not much more I can say about that because it isn't specific.

    My example is not a defense of Native's it's a condemnation of us.
    I get that. I'm more interested in the perspective that takes the whole into account, rather than just being critical in the opposite direction. I spent several years criticizing the US and it bore some fruit, but at some point you get lost in it and you end up warping your worldview in the opposite direction.

    Thus their is an attempt to excuse "us" by pointing out the flaws of Natives, but whether or not Natives were flawed or not does not excuse our own actions.
    True, and this ought not be conflated with pointing out the flaws of the Natives for the sake of trying to come to a greater understanding. That is, outside this argumentative courtroom context.

    In other words it's worth pointing out *not* because it excuses the actions of the other groups (note that I removed "our" for a reason that ought to be self-evident), but because it makes the actions of the other groups easier to understand. Because, like, context matters. A person who steals food because they're starving versus a person who steals food because they don't want to pay or whatever. Same crime with totally different intent should bear different punishments.

    The classic defense is also that "everyone did it". However, everyone does not suppose to be the moral arbiter of the world.
    Well, the defense I've most commonly encountered is *not* everyone did it.

    I'm sure there are terrorists, but I am in no way convinced that they operate to the extent they are portrayed to, nor am I convinced in this cartoonish idea that they want to take over the world and make war by blowing up random, strategically meaningless targets.
    Their ideology intends to take over the world, and that's their words, not mine. Whether specific actors or proponents of that ideology have those intentions is another matter.

    I think you haven't thought about it deeply enough in order to describe it as "random, strategically meaningless targets". When your friend, co-worker, family member, neighbor dies in a car bombing, is attacked for their faith, for not covering up, for being homosexual, it hits close to home. That's the whole point. That's why they're called terrorists. The idea is to strike terror into their targets. The only possible way that can be called random is if you have no consideration beyond the scope of a military campaign. But it isn't just a military campaign. They can't launch a military campaign against most of the west.

    Perhaps an immature metaphor but I'm sure you're familiar with the game of Civilization. One can win by purely militarily means, but even then there are a lot of other factors involved such as economy, industry, and science. But in the video game Civilization, religion and culture can be just as big of threats to your nation. This is why they've realized they don't need to resort to just killing or beheading. Simply harassing people in the streets and attacking their beliefs is enough to cause sufficient unrest and upset communities. There's no social cohesion in this country because the United States doesn't have any sort of fundamental values (or, at best, has forgotten / discarded them). It's become victim to the very thing that Nietzsche warned about: the death of God. There's no unity. Just a lot of nihilistic doubt. I wish I could find the quote (haven't been able to since I first saw it years ago), but the paraphrasing is that unchecked questioning and doubt can be dangerous, to the point that one outright doubts himself out of existence.

    This is merely a continuation of a struggle that has gone on since Islam harassed, invaded, and conquered Christian territories for hundreds of years before Europe had enough of it, banded together, and retaliated.

    Muslims are simply taking advantage of apathy masquerading as "tolerance" (diversity, globalist-corporate multi-culturalism); a tolerance similar to that which was shown them before the Crusades.

    Look how evil and corrupt their religion is. Not like our own. That's proof.
    I'm not one for keeping score usually, but on the whole I'd say Christianity has a far better track record than Islam. Out of all the religions, Islam is the monkey. The one that stopped evolving. I'm being generous because I'd really prefer to say they are devolving.

    Qualifiers like "moderate" are relative to a certain extent. A moderate Christian and a moderate Muslim are quite simply not the same. There are not tens of millions of Christians in the world who tacitly support the IRA.

    The you have the rise of these false intellectuals like Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris who sound legit to people looking for sophisticated blabber, but under the microscope they're really just a mildly educated opinion column. Yuck... But people flock to them like they've discovered a prophet because...people tend to flock. I don't know why...
    I don't even agree with Sam Harris on most things and I wouldn't call him a false intellectual. He's wrong about religion but right about Islam. Same as Christopher Hitchens.

    They're popular because they're good speakers and good at marketing themselves, and are well connected.

    Jordan Peterson never intended to become what he is now. He stood up for bullshit legislation in his own country and people loved it and came to support him. Through that, millions have found his psychological and biblical lectures to be of tremendous benefit, not to mention his self-authoring program which seems to produce positive results. His research into the psychological underpinnings of political disposition is also interesting, but still in the infancy stages.

    Likewise, I find Jonathan Haidt's work to be of great interest.

    He's also criticizing the west's failing educational and scientific institutions.

    There have been a few times Peterson has made mistakes, and to my knowledge he's always come out and admitted them and adjusted course. He also seems cognizant of the areas in which he is not knowledgeable. Neither of these are traits of a false intellectual.

    I've had the fortune of meeting him in person after seeing him speak at a free-speech conference in Canada. He was very tired but I could tell from the way he spoke to me and others that he genuinely cares about people. He is, after all, an educator (Harvard and now UofT) and has had a clinical practice for decades.

    To me it seems genuinely unfair to call Peterson a pseudo-intellectual, assuming that's what you mean by false intellectual; regardless of one's opinions of his fanbase, most of whom are just ordinary people who like his message about taking on responsibility. I'm inclined to take his word (since I have no reason not to, as of yet) that he does receive a lot of fan mail from people who have been inspired by him to enact positive change in their lives.

    None of that you'll get from a Washington Post hit piece. Mainstream "journalism" in this country is a sick joke.

    Now, admittedly not all of that is entirely related to whether or not he's an intellectual. But based on his lectures that he uploads on YouTube, his book Maps of Meaning, his research into the psychological underpinnings of political disposition, his understanding of myth and stories and the Bible, his understanding of the field of psychology and his experience as a clinician, I'm inclined to believe that he's not a false intellectual.

    Stretching himself and dabbling into sectors that he hasn't mastered? Perhaps.
    Updated March 4th, 2019 at 09:29 PM by Smith
  5. kaminoshiyo's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Winston
    The metaphor fails. Native Americans were defending their tribal, ancestral land and their way of life. ISIS invented a "Caliphate" based on an interpretation of the Koran.

    A better metaphor would be the establishment of Mormonism under Joseph Smith. But even in that case, the fringe, separatist group was generally non-violent, insular and did not partake in forced conversions. Compare that to ISIS' brand of Islam that wants to expand via violent takeover of all institutions, secular and devout.
    Well...I don't know if that's their actual aim or not. Sounds a bit like the Monroe Doctrine and White Man's burden. It's not as violent in form because in the West we sugarcoat our aggression. However, comparatively, the resulting violence and atrocities committed by the Monroe Doctrine and White Man's burden dwarf anything ISIS could even dream to aspire to. And yet these very nations are now moral judges over everyone else.

    I'm not sure what you mean by no forced conversions. Mormons or no, people from Europe landed on the east coast and took everything from the Rio Grande to the Arctic; from the Atlantic to the Pacific. And all this with no forced conversions... This benign air people lend to the Church continues to stagger me. I think they get wrapped up too much in the wording of some book and not the actions of the people holding it.

    Those that fought with, and eventually became members of First Nation peoples did so for a number of reasons. Mostly, it was shared values. Living on The Frontier changes a person. The pejorative "going native" comes to mind. I'm sure many white, Anglo folks in NYC, Chicago and Boston thought that people in The West were "savages". But, there is a BIG difference in a settler traveling along The Oregon Trail and some 20 year old buying a plane ticket to Raaqua. They both wanted a better life, but as they say, the Devil is in the details. A kid in college today knows (or should reasonably know) the consequences of their action if they give aid and comfort to a group that espouses violence to accomplish it's ideological goal. Whereas, those that joined the "savages" in the 19th Century did so mainly as ignorant happenstance of being at the the wrong place, at the wrong time.

    The "caliphate" was a bad idea, and deserves the inglorious death it received. Those that ran to it, and supported it in any way were fools of an epic stature. Excusing their behavior in any way, including faulty metaphors, dishonors the victims that died at the hands of truly evil people.
    I'm probably going to sound a tad psychotic here, but I don't even see the big difference. The Caliphate is probably another brutal regime, sure, but...who isn't? Point one out to me? What great nation didn't raise itself on atrocity, murder, theft, violence, and mass bloodshed? You endorse your country and yet it committed so many horrible acts to get what it has today. Now that it has what it sought through violence it can play like St Peter and condemn everyone else trying to get a piece. (not that it actually stopped using violence to get what it wants, it just pretends not to) Not saying one side is right or wrong, I'm just amused that people seem to think this a question of good versus evil rather than champion versus underdog.
  6. kaminoshiyo's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Smith
    Their ideology intends to take over the world, and that's their words, not mine. Whether specific actors or proponents of that ideology have those intentions is another matter.
    Perhaps, but I doubt this differs much from the overall objective of, say, the US, China, or Beijing. Even so, I doubt terrorism is the preferred method of achieving it. It makes absolutely no sense.

    I think you haven't thought about it deeply enough in order to describe it as "random, strategically meaningless targets". When your friend, co-worker, family member, neighbor dies in a car bombing, is attacked for their faith, for not covering up, for being homosexual, it hits close to home. That's the whole point. That's why they're called terrorists. The idea is to strike terror into their targets. The only possible way that can be called random is if you have no consideration beyond the scope of a military campaign. But it isn't just a military campaign. They can't launch a military campaign against most of the west.

    Perhaps an immature metaphor but I'm sure you're familiar with the game of Civilization. One can win by purely militarily means, but even then there are a lot of other factors involved such as economy, industry, and science. But in the video game Civilization, religion and culture can be just as big of threats to your nation. This is why they've realized they don't need to resort to just killing or beheading. Simply harassing people in the streets and attacking their beliefs is enough to cause sufficient unrest and upset communities. There's no social cohesion in this country because the United States doesn't have any sort of fundamental values (or, at best, has forgotten / discarded them). It's become victim to the very thing that Nietzsche warned about: the death of God. There's no unity. Just a lot of nihilistic doubt. I wish I could find the quote (haven't been able to since I first saw it years ago), but the paraphrasing is that unchecked questioning and doubt can be dangerous, to the point that one outright doubts himself out of existence.
    I see what you are trying to say, but I don't think it holds up here. The kind of terrorism that would dissuade a more powerful opponent is more aptly called guerrilla warfare and the point is not to take over, but to harry off a more powerful opponent- usually an invading or occupying force. When attacking innocent people here and there, however, the result has been proven that it only inspires aggression from an opponent. This is basic knowledge and the reasoning why a nation would stage false-flag attacks. For instance, if the US wanted people to go to war against someone than they would display a terrorist act 24/7 nonstop so as many people see it and get angry as possible. That kind of killing enrages, not demoralizes, and would be counterproductive to any political or military power or aspirant seeking to harm or make war against another. At most, their main goal at their level in the game would be to simply gain or regain concrete control over their own locale- let alone "the world".

    This is merely a continuation of a struggle that has gone on since Islam harassed, invaded, and conquered Christian territories for hundreds of years before Europe had enough of it, banded together, and retaliated.

    Muslims are simply taking advantage of apathy masquerading as "tolerance" (diversity, globalist-corporate multi-culturalism); a tolerance similar to that which was shown them before the Crusades.
    Tolerance? Lmao. You confuse American civil politics for American foreign policy.

    I'm not one for keeping score usually, but on the whole I'd say Christianity has a far better track record than Islam. Out of all the religions, Islam is the monkey. The one that stopped evolving. I'm being generous because I'd really prefer to say they are devolving.

    Qualifiers like "moderate" are relative to a certain extent. A moderate Christian and a moderate Muslim are quite simply not the same. There are not tens of millions of Christians in the world who tacitly support the IRA.
    I'm not sure tens of millions of Islamist's support Jihad or even if the term "Jihad" means the same to Muslims all over the world as people in different places think differently. I don't have an understanding of how "Muslim" people think because I don't think all Muslim's think the same at all, or that just because two people are Muslim it will make them anymore violent than Christianity would make any two people holy. I'd have to stress, again, that some of the worst human atrocities and the most violent acts have been instigated by Christians. If you compare the historical acts of Christians to Muslims, Muslims could not hope to achieve the level of carnage Christians have wrought. Christians have exceeded many other culture in may respects- including violence. Muslim's- or the people who would become Muslims- have been victimized by Christianity since it's ascension through Roman power. Christians were wed to violence long before Muslims was even a thing.
  7. Smith's Avatar
    1. I'm not here to give feedback on their methods. I don't have anything more to say on this beyond acknowledging what their ideology is.

    2. Who said anything about dissuading? Obviously they're not trying to dissuade anybody from attacking them by means of terrorism. A terrorist attack isn't supposed to be a military operation by definition. Obviously it's different from guerilla warfare.

    Now, it really does dissuade cartoonists from making fun of Mohammad.

    3. I'm not confusing them at all.

    4. *Tacit* support.

    One point I genuinely think you're wrong about is thinking that Islam is in any way equally violent as Christianity. The former religion is literally founded by a pedophile warlord. God's wrath in the Bible isn't pretty, but I'm interested in actions that I can be certain happened. That is, how the religion was initially founded, who it was founded by, and what were their teachings. As far as I'm concerned, ISIS actually have a far more traditional understanding of their religious texts. Gotta' give credit where it's due. Islam was founded with every intention of violently imposing on every infidel.

    The worst thing that Jesus did was what... drive some money launderers out with a whip?

    Yeah, I can agree (for sake of argument) that every group has bad actors. The thing is, the terrorists aren't *bad* actors. They're actually doing what they're supposed to be doing as per their religious beliefs.

    Regardless, I really don't understand what you're even trying to achieve here with this relativism. Is nobody supposed to say or do anything about Islam, its fundamental incompatibility with the west, or even ISIS, because "we did bad things too"?

    Let's try this one. Imagine: it's 1940. Ignore the gulags! Ignore the concentration camps! Ignore the racism of the Nazis; slavery used to be legal in this country. They're wiping out the Jews? Well, we did kind of wipe out the Native Americans.

    For me, there quickly comes a point where the self-criticism gets uselessly neurotic. You would have a point if you were pointing out current hypocrisy. But as far as I'm concerned, it's as if a person named Usa says, "Hey Isis. You're a liar man."

    Then you come in and say, "But you lied too Usa, 43 years ago back in middle school."

    So? I'm interested to see where you're drawing the line, because if you follow your logic to its conclusion, basically there is no forgiveness or redemption or otherwise ability-to-move-on from anything, and therefore no means of criticizing the actions of another, as they can merely be cancelled out by some thing your great-grandfather's great-grandfather did.
    Updated March 7th, 2019 at 04:46 AM by Smith
  8. Kevin's Avatar
    I don't know how you can draw such absolute conclusions without a more extensive knowledge.
    As far as which religion historically was worse, how do you define worse? by types of acts, by overall numbers? by how long these acts went in for?
    Q: Which was worse...the Islamic conquest of Andalusia, or the Reconquista by the Christians? And the aftermath of each conquest, the occupation... How about living in Andalusia or living in Spain? Which one was better? What levels of repression..? How do you compare? What do you really know?
    Here's a more recent one to question your ideas:
    https://www.mintpressnews.com/as-mai...g-ship/255223/

    Is diesh more evil than the rest or not? Did they have to go?
    I know people from there so I have my opinions partially based on theirs.
    Updated March 6th, 2019 at 07:15 PM by Kevin
  9. Smith's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin
    I don't know how you can draw such absolute conclusions without a more extensive knowledge.
    As far as which religion historically was worse, how do you define worse? by types of acts, by overall numbers? by how long these acts went in for?
    Q: Which was worse...the Islamic conquest of Andalusia, or the Reconquista by the Christians? And the aftermath of each conquest, the occupation... How about living in Andalusia or living in Spain? Which one was better? What levels of repression..? How do you compare? What do you really know?
    Here's a more recent one to question your ideas:
    https://www.mintpressnews.com/as-mai...g-ship/255223/

    Is diesh more evil than the rest or not? Did they have to go?
    I know people from there so I have my opinions partially based on theirs.
    If you're asking me, I care primarily about what's happening currently, what the religious texts say specifically regarding the founding, the teachings (see: instructions), and whether or not the religion has evolved or stayed a monkey (see: reformation).

    Digging up dirt on Christianity or Islam is about as useful as this conversation about the Native Americans. So yeah, I shouldn't have bothered bringing up the Crusades, since I was committing what I see as a mistake.
    Updated March 7th, 2019 at 04:55 AM by Smith
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