ChockrickBear Gaming

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General Discussion

ChockrickBearMar 26, 2020 3:20pm EDT
I suppose I could start making use of my own forum system by posting some short, random thoughts.
[t]On Us-Versus-Them[/t]
Us-versus-them is a non-explanation of group conflict. It sounds academic, but it does not address any of the arguments being made. It does not see groups as people with common interests that they are entitled to protect, and instead, sees conflict in terms of nothing more than aggressor and victim with a clear moral power dynamic.

Its only solution to conflict is to eliminate the concept of "them" by being infinitely inclusive of who belongs to "us", which requires the erasure of differences and the assimilation of everyone into a collective hive mind. The goals of the collective are ultimately just an extension of the goals of only a handful of people at the top. Its failure to understand what different people want and its maintaining of distance from perceived aggressors is precisely the kind of dehumanization and othering that it claims to be against.
ChockrickBearMar 27, 2020 10:59am EDT
[t]Social anxiety and criticism[/t]
A major reason why I run this website is because I do not like socializing with people. The prospect of having to deal with people fills me with dread, and I wish I could just live my life being invisible. However, I know it is not possible to live comfortably without other people because they produce the things I like. Even posting on a public forum makes me tight in the chest. I know that I have only one chance to make a good first impression, and if I blow it, it will ruin any chance of me succeeding. I will attract bullies who will see me as easy pickings. If I stay invisible, at least I have the potential, the benefit of the doubt. I can prepare and wait for an opportunity to make my entry grand.

I am not so much afraid of people as I am afraid of being judged. It is ironic because I am a critic; my job is to judge. However, being afraid is not a good thing because it will not get me anywhere. No one respects cowards, and expecting others to cater to my weakness as the socialists do is the greatest cowardice. In order to not be afraid, I have to understand the thing that makes me afraid; I have to face my fear. Because I am afraid of being judged, I have to understand judgment, I have to tackle the criticism I am afraid of. Thus, I criticize in the way I expect to be criticized. And to be protected from criticism, I have to associate with the highest truth that cannot be criticized.
ChockrickBearMar 29, 2020 11:41am EDT
[t]The paradox of tolerance and free speech[/t]
An argument I have seen to justify deplatforming conservatives is that a tolerant society cannot tolerate the intolerant or else the intolerant will destroy the tolerant and make society no longer tolerant. This is a reference to [l=]Karl Popper's paradox of tolerance[/l]. However, to use this to justify restrictions on free speech is a gross misrepresentation of what Popper actually wrote.

The "intolerant" who Popper was referring to are those who not only refuse to debate, but go out of their way to prevent other people from listening to the other side of the argument. In other words, it is ironically the left who are the intolerant ones by deplatforming people no one is forcing them to listen to while teaching others to "punch Nazis". They are authoritarians deciding on your behalf who you are allowed to listen to and what you are allowed to like. If the relatively tolerant does not stand up against them, they will dominate public discourse and hijack the mainstream.

The whole point of free speech is to find the strongest arguments that supersede all other arguments so that everyone can associate with the irrefutable truth and benefit from the innovation. But to do so, you must listen to all arguments in the hopes of discovering new insights even if not everything one says is correct. If what you believe is truly correct, you should be able to refute the other side. You should have a mental network of arguments for why you believe the things you do relative to your opposition, so listening will not harm you unless you are intolerant. Free speech is not an arbitrary law, it is the very principle underlying tolerance.

You could say that there are reasonable limits to free speech, such as defamation and incitement, but free speech can counter those things, which is why I do not consider those to be reasonable limits. When people call for restrictions to speech, they are concerned about the connection to harassment and violence. However, those things are already illegal, but that has not stopped people from doing them because coercively stopping people from doing something does not address the underlying human motivation. Differences need to be resolved, and free speech is the most civilized way to do it.

A reasonable limit to free speech is preventing people from yelling over each other, which disrupts organized discourse and infringes on people's ability to speak freely. Free speech is about the transparent communication of ideas, not the unlimited flow of sound from one's mouth, so it is reasonable to control the flow of speech so that everyone gets their turn. Shouting "fire" in a crowded theatre disrupts the free speech of the theatre. Even then, the concept of incitement ignores the agency of the incited people. Every single person in the crowd is morally responsible for their actions. Speech is never the cause of harm, people acting upon it is. If you want to prevent incitement to violence, then exercise your free speech and educate people.
ChockrickBearMar 29, 2020 8:17pm EDT
[t]Consequences of expression, discrimination, and the lie of equality[/t]
Freedom comes with benefits, but it also comes with responsibilities because a free society is not some magical fantasy land where you can give everyone everything they want. If you present yourself differently, it is your responsibility to justify it. As leftists keep repeating, freedom of expression does not mean freedom from consequences. What they do not realize is that it goes both ways, but they only want to regulate in one direction. To them, there is harm if it is against minorities, but no harm if it is against conservatives. They do not understand that they are only a minority because they are unpopular.

Anti-discrimination laws present an exhaustive list of factors you may not discriminate against because leftists want to reserve the right to discriminate against the specific groups they want, reinforced by the fact that they came up with affirmative action exemptions because they do not know when to stop. Getting rid of Jim Crow laws weren't enough for them, they just had to force diversity on everyone, and now they are trying to push intersectionality to n-tuple-dip on entitlements. Anti-discrimination laws are not inclusive, they are redistributive. Someone has to fail for another to be given success, and leftists think it is their right to decide on behalf of others who should succeed and fail. You can rest assured that they won't choose themselves to fail because that would defeat the point of their activism.

Leftists take advantage of the nebulous definition of equality so that everyone agrees with the law using their own definition. The left wants it for equal outcome, the right wants it for equal opportunity. Then, the left uses this opening to push hard on their definition using the idea that unequal outcome is proof of unequal opportunity to get further bipartisan support. What nobody realizes is that you cannot have equal opportunity either because opportunities are created by the outcomes of the previous generation. In order to create equal opportunity, you must undo the previous unequal outcomes, completely undermining the distinction.

Equality is a disingenuous concept to manipulate the desirable into sacrificing themselves for the undesirable. No one treats everyone equally because it is physically impossible and socially dishonourable. You will just end up with a whole lot of shallow relationships, and there will still be plenty of people you have not gotten around to who you don't even know about. No one really cares about your ability to say "please" and "thank you". They care about whether you will actually commit your limited time and resources on them. If you do not give them what they want, they have no reason to give you what you want. To demand equality in this regard is evil.
ChockrickBearApr 1, 2020 1:21pm EDT
[t]The echo chamber of comment voting systems[/t]
What I have noticed about online communities is that like-minded people tend to cluster together. Most people don't like being disagreed with, so they will find communities that support their views and make them feel confident in themselves. Politically left-leaning websites tend to attract left-leaning audiences and right-leaning websites tend to attract right-leaning audiences. This ends up being reflected in the prevailing direction that comment votes go. Dissenting views get heavily downvoted without voters needing to justify their choice, creating a majoritarian pressure that discredits and discourages dissent without rational argument while making the majority more smug about themselves. There is no way of holding moderators to account for their biases, so they may end up suppressing valid criticism if it harms their side. People who do not know much about anything are inclined to just go with the majority and add their vote to reinforce the groupthink. As such, communities have a tendency of becoming echo chambers, and voting systems end up being useless at representing truth.

Comment voting is a misapplication of democracy. Just because the majority believes something does not mean it is true. Democracy gives the ignorant the same voting influence as the intellectuals, and the ignorant are much greater in number. Democracy is not for making the best decisions, but for limiting the power of the highest authority because there is no other civilized way to hold the government to account should it be corrupt. In an internet argument, words do not force you to do anything, so there is no need to limit a commenter's power. You are supposed to use your own judgment in deciding whether a person's words are valid, ask if you are not sure, and reserve judgment if you are still not sure. In a free society, you are supposed to be your own ruler fixing your own weakness and negotiating your place with others, not forcing others to bail you out of your own stupidity.
ChockrickBearApr 2, 2020 3:50pm EDT
[t]The musical art of gameplay[/t]
I have been thinking about how being a skilled musician is prestigious, that if you can play a musical instrument beautifully, you are a high-value person. Playing music is an art, but at its core, it is pressing buttons, blowing into a tube, or plucking strings to make a series of sounds that resonate with our biological rhythms.

Gaming is not really that different. You are pressing buttons and swiping a mouse to create images on a screen. There is a certain elegance to being good at a game, and it is this experience that makes gaming artistic like playing a musical instrument. There is a cathartic flow to having a threat appear in front of you, lining up the crosshair on the head, and then bam! Shooting the head directly targets the essence of a person and punishes their arrogance in the most deliberate fashion. Even more satisfying when this is done to many enemies in quick succession. In contrast, it is cringy to watch a bad player spray everywhere while barely killing anything.

Good shooters emphasize this catharsis and include a sense of rhythm that lets you kill, kill, kill. I recall Doom (2016) feeling slightly off to me in that staggering enemies and moving in for the glory kill didn't have reliable flow. Staggering enemies felt like guesswork due to the shotgun having too much spread, and movement speed was too slow relative to engagement distances to make glory killing a reliable rhythmic follow-through to shooting, which is why I increased damage and movement speed in my custom map.

Like an instrument, a game needs to be accurately tuned for best results, and I think games should go beyond simple difficulty levels by letting you tweak the balance while still retaining the game's characteristic experience. I play games not to prove that I am better than everyone, but to feel the flow of the action. Sometimes, I watch other people play to experience their style and even adapt some of their techniques to my own.
ChockrickBearApr 4, 2020 12:56pm EDT
[t]My political orientation and the problem of political categories[/t]
I decided to take [l=]The Political Compass[/l] test, and I scored (1.5, -1.59). This means that I am close to the centre with a bias towards right-wing libertarianism. In other words, my overall way of thinking is not extreme, even though I hold some views that are not mainstream. I suspect I always had a right-wing bias because as a kid, I was attracted to technological superiority, so I liked the Protoss in Starcraft, the Predator in Aliens vs. Predator, and the Brotherhood of Steel in Fallout. I have a natural preference for strength and nobility.

I get the impression that political categorization is not a well-understood concept by the average person. My theory is that a lot of people are not heavily invested in politics, so they just take what other people tell them at face value. In order to judge left or right, and consequently good or bad, they use an availability heuristic to attribute certain views to certain people they were told to be left or right. If the media keeps emphasizing that a terrorist is right-wing and keeps referencing terrorists when talking about the right, it would plant into gullible people's heads that right-wing is pro-terrorism. It becomes the image that is immediately available in their head when you talk about the right, which means the media representation had a propagandistic effect. This is especially a problem if the media fails to report on motivations or downplays them if the terrorist is left-wing.

You cannot trust that the allegedly "authoritative" source does not have an ideological bias when they tell you to ignore other sources, especially when their career depends on maintaining their credibility. It is a massive stretch to think that violence is motivated by nothing more than seeing people on a hierarchy because everyone perceives and acts on hierarchy whether they admit it or not. Trusting authoritative sources is engaging in hierarchy. Following game reviews is engaging in hierarchy. Preferring white, feminine, noble women is engaging in hierarchy. It is your dishonesty, hypocrisy, and self-righteousness that fuels hate against you.

One of the questions on the test asked whether you believe electronic surveillance is a problem only if you have something to hide. It is definitely a problem because of the mental heuristics regular people use to judge you on the spot, especially when it comes to politics, which means they cannot be trusted to interpret alternative views with an open mind even though you are not an actual threat to them or anyone. There are plenty of people who cannot handle the truth, which is why privacy is important for everyone. Reality has a right-wing bias, otherwise people would not be trying to regulate it.
ChockrickBearApr 6, 2020 3:30pm EDT
[t]Appealing to authority and the difference between science and philosophy[/t]
When you are constantly told to trust only authoritative sources, you have to ask, what defines authoritative? The most basic form of authority comes from studying something and reporting on it truthfully. Everyone has a baseline ability to study things just by looking at it, so what an authority says should agree with what people can observe, but with a greater level of depth. However, problems arise when other people who also studied the same thing report conflicting results. It is possible that what you observed was an illusion, like a magic trick. Of course, once you explain the magic trick, it should align with people's common understanding of reality.

If an alleged authority is telling you to deny your own observations and blindly trust their observations, you are not being educated, you are being indoctrinated. You are an observing individual, and they are observing individuals. The onus is on them to convince you, not on you to believe them because you cannot know what kind of personal or political motivation they have for telling you the things they do. The World Health Organization [l=]first claimed that there was no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus[/l], yet we are now dealing with a pandemic. Public health "experts" have claimed that [l=]travel bans and quarantines do not work[/l], yet here we are isolating ourselves. Trusting these authorities created response delays that allowed the disease to spread uncontrollably.

Authorities end up making judgment calls in areas they actually have little authority in because different fields are often intertwined, especially with economics and politics, and they cannot afford to be paralyzed with indecision. We created a society that promises free speech because it is important to question authorities when they say things that do not make sense. The appeal to authority is always a logical fallacy, even if it leads to a correct conclusion with above chance consistency. The fallacy of division can also lead to a correct conclusion with above chance consistency, but people will deny racism with absolute certainty. The idea of peer review is also flawed as it is possible for the peers to be in a sort of academic clique uncritically propping each other up (see [l=]the Grievance studies affair[/l]).

Realize that there is a distinction between science and philosophy. Scientists who know statistical methods do not necessarily know what is morally right, and philosophers who know what is morally right do not necessarily know how to collect and represent accurate information. You can measure and report on the negative mental health and socioeconomic outcomes of marginalized groups, but that does not mean that we as a society should do anything about it when it would violate the rights of everyone else. The science demonstrates inequality exists, but the philosophy dictates inequality is not a useful measure for a just society because equality is not necessarily a good thing within the confines of a resource-limited reality and the human nature to want nice things. The lessons to take away are to be open-minded to different perspectives and be prepared to defy authority if they expect you to act against your own interests.
ChockrickBearApr 10, 2020 5:18pm EDT
[t]Spoilers and the importance of critical analysis[/t]
Why is there an aversion to spoilers? There is an expectation that learning the story beforehand would make it boring when you finally experience it yourself. It is based on the idea that the novelty is what gives the story value, that being ignorant of what happens next is what drives you to keep going, that learning the story is the point of it.

In a world where there are so many stories competing for your time and money, knowing key things about a story can help you decide whether the story interests you enough to commit yourself to it. It is not enough to just know the premise of the story, you have to know important plot points to know what themes it covers and how deep the story goes. Reviews are untrustworthy without supporting examples, so you cannot know much about the quality of a story without being spoiled. Unless you have photographic memory, it is best to go through a story at least twice in order to fully appreciate it. A lot of details that were not immediately meaningful become meaningful once you know everything, so you can make connections you did not make the first time, thus enjoying the story with a greater level of depth.

Even though we experience stories from start to finish, stories are not written from top to bottom; ideas are spontaneously brainstormed, rearranged, and discarded. If a story has lots of foreshadowing and hints, the writer wrote them knowing full well what will happen later. Writers experience their own work from a birds-eye view of the whole thing, jotting down random ideas and figuring out where to put them in the grand scheme. To experience the story the way the writer did is to know the story beforehand and see how everything fits together. The process of writing does lead to some emergent ideas you would never have realized had you not taken the time to work out the logic, but it is understanding the logic that creates a deep experience, not from merely knowing the conclusion without regard to context.

The idea that novelty is what makes a story valuable is a shallow way of experiencing it. It treats the story as a disposable, hedonistic experience to be taken for granted rather than as a narrative of the writer's mind with assertions that are not entirely correct, but made to appear correct. Uncritically absorbing stories makes them potential vectors of political propaganda because they promote world views that support dangerous social policies. Stories that sympathize with the poor inspire mass immigration, which drives down wages and inflates housing prices for the middle and lower classes, threatens the culture of the host country, and exposes innocent people to foreign criminals. Stories that see good and evil as intrinsic properties of people encourage prejudiced and intolerant attitudes towards political opposition and blind trust towards the alleged good guys. Spoiler analysis allows you to understand the broader implications of a story's themes and protect yourself from indoctrination.
ChockrickBearApr 14, 2020 1:16am EDT
[b]Update:[/b] Just to be clear, I am not being pro-suicide in this post. This is an account of my own internal struggle that is ultimately up to me to resolve through reason and willpower. The subtext to this is to focus on what you have rather than what you don't and hang on to the faintest glimmer of hope because you do not truly know what will happen in the future.
[t]Coping with inferiority[/t]
It is just a fact of life that people are not equal. Some people are able to figure out more and do more than others. Even if you have skill, if you cannot communicate your skill to others, you might as well not have it. I constantly struggle with my own inferiority as I look at my work here and see that no one is reading any of this. Self-promotion is looked down upon and the nature of my work is divisive and niche, yet it is the only thing I can focus on, the best work I am able to do. However, my focus is wavering after years of making no public progress and doubting whether my ideas will gain any sort of acceptance.

I do not write with the authority of an elite scientist who works at a research campus with fancy glass buildings, has advanced calculus for common sense, can speak five languages simultaneously, and whose only weakness is being unable to juggle more than two balls. My mind is prone to looping and blanking out, I have a hard time participating in other people's conversations, and I have reached the point in my life when I have no legitimate reason to approach anyone without looking like a stalker. However, I will not blame other people for my own weakness because they did not cause my existence and they have a right not to waste their time and money on me when they are too busy living their superior lives surrounded by superior people.

What is an inferior person to do? Suicide seems like an easy out. We are all equal in sleep, so sleeping is a source of dignity. When you do not want to face another day of being reminded of your inferiority, you would want to sleep forever so that the morning never comes. When there are already plenty of talented people maintaining society, what use is a lone, talentless hack? People are born into this world without purpose, so they can leave without purpose if they don't like what life has given them. But the thing is, everyone dies eventually, so does it really matter if you die now or later? If you are inferior, you are invisible. At the very minimum, you can be a passive observer of life, a background character in other people's stories until your time comes. Being inferior gives you a unique perspective you can write about with a sliver of hope that it might be interesting to someone.

When the demand for success outstrips the supply, there are people who find a way to make more. When people suffer from a lack of purpose in life, talented people can play the role of villains and manufacture problems within the safety of an imaginary world for the plebs to feel like heroes beating them. Video games exist so you can feel like the skilled good guy without being truly skilled, good, or even a guy. Romance stories are a way to experience perfect love without needing to be the perfect person finding the perfect partner under perfectly coincidental circumstances. Programming a website, writing my thoughts, and putting them on a publicly accessible web server lets me feel more important than I really am.

If you are going to die anyways, immersing yourself in the grandest illusion is the most dignified death you can get. Those who died in front of their computers, lived the greatest life they could realistically achieve. You can pretend to care about them, but if you were there, you would have ignored them like everyone else in their life. Do not claim to believe in helping people when you will just push the responsibility onto others. Real life is not some RPG where the world only moves when you do, you can go around bothering everyone to find out who needs help, and the good option just presents itself for you to click on to create the best outcome without any long-term commitments and opportunity costs from you.

In reality, what can be done for the weak has already been done by the heroes who created the virtual worlds we enjoy. If you have access to video games, you are already living large, you just have to recognize it. The Sims 3 gave me access to the nicest mansion I could imagine. Assetto Corsa gave me access to the fastest cars that let me feel the curve of a road. For a nobody, I have lived a pretty good life, although it would be nice to find some real-life success.
ChockrickBearApr 16, 2020 6:10pm EDT
[b]Update:[/b] Improved wording for clarity.
[t]The meaning of the 1984 slogans[/t]
George Orwell's 1984 states the three slogans of the ruling elite:

These seem nonsensical at first glance, but they line up with socialist thought perfectly.

[b]WAR IS PEACE[/b] - Socialists that use the paradox of tolerance to justify shutting down those they deem as intolerant fulfills this slogan. They believe that in order to create a peaceful, tolerant society, we must wage war against the intolerant. For fear that they will wage war against us, we must preemptively wage war against them, which completely lacks self-awareness.

[b]FREEDOM IS SLAVERY[/b] - Capitalism is a system that ensures everyone has the same freedom. You are free to do what you want on your own property, but you may not violate other people's property or else you are taking away their freedom. However, socialists see capitalism as being enslaved to an employer, that the average person is not free because they have to work for someone else to live, that freedom enables inequality by allowing the competent to freely use their skill to help themselves. Therefore, in order to free people from the slavery of capitalism, we must enable people to live without being tied to an employer by redistributing the employer's wealth without needing to do any work for the employer. It is an ironically selfish view that does not recognize work as helping people in exchange for their help, nor does it recognize that it is not someone else's fault that you hunger and have bills to pay. It believes true freedom should not come with responsibilities as if reality can become a utopia of free stuff just because you want it to be.

[b]IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH[/b] - Socialists engage in censorious behaviour because they are ill-equipped to counter the other side of the argument. Instead of responding to opposition views, they remove the person saying them or use insults to drown out and dismiss them. They don't need to hear your side of the argument because they have already decided it is not worth listening to under a prejudiced assumption that your views necessarily lead to harm. They feel that if they listened, it would cause them suffering, not because your views are so wrong that it would require an uncomfortable amount of time and effort to dig into all of the underlying and interconnected assumptions, but because your views create a cognitive dissonance against their preconceived and non-negotiable moral axioms. To stay ignorant of the other side means they can feel confident in their innocent image of pretending to believe in helping everyone while continuing to live in luxury.

There is a Pavlovian conditioning in associating moral absolutes with images of beauty and heroism, and a lot of works of fiction facilitate this by making the good characters beautiful and the bad ugly. It takes a bit of deconstructing to realize that even heroes have limitations that unconsciously create emergent immorality due to factors beyond their mental capacity, which is why socialism is actually a terrible ideology pushed by doublethinkers. It is easy to be a hypocrite who only says things that are socially convenient and helps people at other people's expense. Reality does not make it easy to tell who is good or bad, you have to compare what they say versus what they do, and analyze the cost-benefit of what they offer versus what they demand from you.
ChockrickBearMay 1, 2020 12:35pm EDT
[t]Interpreting God and other Christian concepts[/t]
Even though I have referenced Christian ideas in my writing, I still consider myself to be atheist. The biggest problem with believing in God is that if God created the universe, then who created God? If we can say that God always existed, why can't we say the universe always existed in some form? I thought that the idea of God was nothing more than superstition, but after listening to some of Jordan Peterson's interpretations of biblical stories and learning about the concept of grand narratives, I came to understand that the Bible is fundamentally just ancient people's writings trying to establish the truth about how the world works. It is a collection of stories that can be interpreted like any other story without regard to whether it is historically accurate or not.

This led me to consider, what if God is not a magical man in the sky, but an abstract representation of the universe itself? God's will is not the literal will of an intelligent being, but simply the fact that the universe being what it is creates the emergent outcomes we see in nature. The universe being what it is led to the creation of Earth and all of its life, and that is good. Survival is good. Reproduction is good. Creation of a prosperous, civil society is good. Competition rewarding the best is good. Good parents tend to produce good children. Talented people seem like they are divinely blessed because of their ability to come up with things no one else can, so it is good to follow their example to repeat their success. What is good is what aligns with the grand narrative of reality, that is, to continue existing and evolving within the rules of nature when the alternative is death and nothingness. There is no need to believe in anything supernatural when nature is already above us and defines everything about how we live.

This leads to the idea that anything that undermines survival, reproduction, and prosperity is bad. Fornication and adultery create broken families, which undermines the survival and prosperity of children, and thus the future of society. Homosexuality produces no children, making it bad for the long-term survival and prosperity of society, which is why it should not be taught to others as a perfectly viable way of life to be copied. The kingdom of God is an extrapolated end-state of a human society made up of the most talented and honourable people who have created a technologically and morally ideal paradise. However, it still operates within the limits of nature, so it is not all-inclusive, especially against those who would ruin it by not conforming to the culture while net leeching off of its success.

The Ten Commandments were created because being oppressed did not automatically mean the Hebrews were good people. Once free, they became complacent, unproductive, and immoral. Believing freedom was objectively good, they took it to its extreme and became an embarrassment of a people who fooled around with no direction and harmed each other in the process. Their behaviour demonstrated a need for a minimum level of law and social structure to restrain their behaviour and create a nation rivalling that of their oppressors. It is possible to interpret the Ten Commandments through a secular lens:

1. To have no other gods before God means to not believe that reality works in any other way, that the objective, empirical reality is the true reality that is immutable. But why would anyone deny the objective reality? Postmodern liberalism is the belief that everything is subjective, so everyone can live the life they want without judgment. Established social norms are regarded as arbitrary social constructions that were made specifically to benefit certain people and oppress others, not to impartially and efficiently manage a scarce and unequal reality. It implicitly believes that people are on the level of God and can reshape reality so that everyone can be included in the grand utopia. It does not understand why people were excluded in the first place, until people start disagreeing with each other and expressing mutually exclusive interests. In the end, it is a false god that will create the oppressive system it claims to distance itself from.

2. Idolatry is the fixation on artificial images that distract you from observing and understanding reality. Immersing yourself in fiction runs the risk of you losing sight of reality, leading you to neglect your real-life duties to pursue unrealistic fantasies. I don't consider fiction to be bad in itself, but it can be a vector of uncritically examined ideas that misguide you, such as socialism. Chronically wanting to escape from reality is a sign of deeper psychological issues rather than caused by the mere existence of fiction, although fiction can exacerbate it by distracting you from dealing with your problems.

3. To use God's name in vain means to appeal to authority on a subject to make people believe you on blind faith regardless of what is actually true. Appealing to authority is a way of gaslighting people to uncritically accept nonsense. There is no need to tell people that your ideas are scientific when you can just explain and demonstrate them in reality.

4. To keep the Sabbath day holy means to take a step back from your work to reflect on where you came from, why you work, and whether you are moving in the right direction in the grand scheme of things. Without reflecting on your ultimate goals, without looking at the big picture of your existence and the existence of society, it is easy to get sidetracked and spend time and resources on counter-productive things.

5. Honouring your parents is about recognizing the fact that you only exist because of them. They did the things that worked, just as their parents did the things that worked, so you should understand their success and carry forward their legacy or else everything they have worked for will crumble and have been for nothing. If you do not respect the fact that you have ancestors who worked for your existence, you run the risk of forgetting that you have a duty to continue the cycle or else you will terminate it with your inevitable death that will leave nothing behind. Great nations are not created in a single generation, and betraying your ancestors is a betrayal of society.

The rest are pretty self-explanatory, but this shows that Christian teachings are compatible with a secular world view. It suggests that Christian values were created in good faith, and countries built on these values became the most desirable countries in the world. I do not identify as a Christian because I do not practice its traditions nor do I restrict my beliefs to group associations, but I am willing to seriously engage with its teachings to understand where it comes from. Everyone picks and chooses individual beliefs to suit them, which is why associating with a religion is inflexible and largely pointless.
ChockrickBearMay 18, 2020 6:21pm EDT
[t]Brainwashing versus reason[/t]
A scare tactic pushed by leftists is the idea of going down a right-wing rabbit hole of seemingly reasonable ideas that are a slippery slope to antisocial extremism. To them, there are ideas that are just so dangerous that they must be suppressed to protect innocent minds from being corrupted into hateful bigots who will carry out the next mass shooting.

The irony in this is that those who want to prevent you from seeing things are the ones actually trying to control how you think. You cannot derive a conclusion that depends on knowledge you don't have, so controlling available information controls your thoughts. Leftists are the ones doing the actual brainwashing, or more precisely, keeping your brain "clean" because they have an interest in protecting their ideas and credibility from incriminating evidence. They do not consider that perhaps it is themselves who are fuelling rightist hatred, that the right hates them because they are trying to impose their ideas on people while having the arrogance to believe they are the enlightened ones acting in good faith.

The concept of the right-wing rabbit hole is not a counter-argument to rightist ideas, but an outright dismissal with prejudice. It is a dehumanizing claim that rightists are an other group that have no legitimate concerns and should not be engaged with, and it is all to the advantage of the leftists in charge. Do you really think they are objective robots who will report on things that will make themselves look bad and undermine their own goals? The media smeared Gamergate as a misogynistic harassment campaign because the movement was about criticizing the media's credibility.

If you are truly correct, you should be able to convincingly argue against the lesser ideology. But rather than do this, leftists resort to censorship or demonizing the opposition, which is the mark of holding a belief system built on emotion over reason. They are not concerned with what is objectively true as they are concerned with creating an idealistic community they imagined off the top of their heads. As a result, they end up creating conflicts of interest that lead to a shifting definition of "inclusive", which is why the left eats itself through victim competition, such as transtrenders versus truscum, radical feminists versus TERFs, and anti-Islamophobes versus LGBTs.

It is not the mere perception of hierarchy that leads to hate. Why would you perceive someone inferior to you to be a threat? If anything, hate spawns from the perception that someone else is powerful enough to cause your miseries, so lashing out with all of your might is the only way of matching their power. In other words, it is leftism that is at the root of hate because it involves blaming an entire class of people for society's problems. It is no surprise that all of the genocidal regimes of the 20th century were built on socialism because genocide is a manifestation of revolution against a entire class of people for the sake of social progress.

Brainwashing involves appealing to emotion, not reason. You are truly brainwashed when you believe that national socialism is right-wing, when you rely on appeals to authority or the majority to tell you what to think instead of connecting the dots yourself, when you avoid engaging with controversial ideas out of an irrational fear of a slippery slope, and when you sacrifice your own interests for people who do not sacrifice theirs for you. Brainwashing is the giving up of your individuality to submit to the will of other people under a delusion that they genuinely care about you beyond a surface, utilitarian level.

The reason why we have free speech is because no one is infallible and completely trustworthy. Everyone is first and foremost interested in their own success and are distanced from those their political ideas affect, so there has to be a constant threat of public scrutiny to ensure no one gets away with actual brainwashing. Neutrality and credibility operate on an honour system that has no mechanism of self-regulation beyond alternative sources. Peer review is just alternative sources agreeing or disagreeing through reasoned arguments, public opinion is a basic form of peer review, and free speech is the underpinning philosophy behind all of it. If you have a problem with what someone is saying, you have the freedom to argue against it, but you also have to be prepared to be wrong.
ChockrickBearMay 25, 2020 1:08am EDT
[t]The morality of conservatism[/t]
It is worth noting that [l=]conservatives understand liberals better than liberals understand conservatives[/l]. Liberals believe conservatives are evil because conservatives are against government policies intended to ease the suffering of others. However, it comes from a misunderstanding of what conservatism represents.

At its core, conservatism is the ideology of limits. It recognizes that it is physically impossible to give everyone everything, that sharing wealth dilutes it and any cutoff is arbitrary and hypocritically exclusionary. It recognizes that not everyone produces the things everyone wants, so resources are best allocated to those who are the most productive. It recognizes that empathy and kindness are worthless if they are not backed by an exchange of tangible value, that no amount of someone thanking you will put food on your table, pay your bills, and get you laid. It recognizes that having the ability to help does not make you responsible for someone else's suffering because otherwise, it would be a moving goalpost that will result in you having to do all of the work for none of the reward. It recognizes that quality over quantity is a more honest and sustainable attitude towards people. It recognizes that liberals are just looking for free stuff at other people's expense.

Conservatism is the logical conclusion of working out an honest, realistic, and internally consistent moral code. Realistically, you don't care about everyone because you just don't have the mental capacity, time, and resources to understand and satisfy the desires of every single person. Choosing to help someone creates an opportunity cost to helping someone else, so you have an incentive to only help those who are of most value to you. The liberal belief in helping everyone violates the principle of loyalty because you are diverting your limited time and resources away from your own people to chase outsiders who could care less about your people. You jump around in your relationships to take advantage of everyone instead of focusing your attention on a limited group, so you are shallow in your relationships and unreliable when you are needed. Liberals have breadth, but conservatives have depth.

Liberals are not necessarily better people than conservatives. Why do poor conservatives vote against their own interests? For the same reason they do not believe in stealing. Liberals do not understand what government is and do not distinguish between self and other, which is why they can so easily advocate for wealth redistribution policies and are baffled by poor conservatives refusing government help. If you want to help people, why don't you just do it? Why do you feel the need to create a bureaucratic system of coercive control over the fruits of other people's labour? Because it is easy to be generous with other people's money. You want to play saviour without any major sacrifices on your part. You think you have the right to control what other people do with their money because you arrogantly think you know better than those who are more popular and make more money than you. This is why us-versus-them is not the problem liberal academics make it out to be. Without a clear distinction between self and other, you think you are entitled to decide things on other people's behalf and treat their stuff as your own.

Liberals tend to be more intelligent than conservatives because it takes intelligence to utilize the advanced cognitive technique of doublethink. You are honest because you are too dumb to place layers of mental abstraction between yourself and the truth to filter and change it to whatever you need it to be; you are not smart enough to see the emperor's new clothes. Liberals are so intelligent that they exist in a state of cognitive superposition so that their mind becomes whatever is convenient for a given situation. They do not care about objectivity and internal consistency because it is restrictive and illiberal, but they will appeal to objectivity when it gives them the advantage in an argument. They only believe in freedom when it liberates themselves. They only believe in equality when it allows them to assert their moral superiority over the stupid conservatives. They believe in helping the poor under the belief that the poor are simply unlucky, but then they use cancel culture to deliberately make conservatives poor. Funny how the poor suddenly deserves to be poor when liberals are in charge. Being intelligent just means you know how to wear sheep's clothing.

Conservatism is about being realistic rather than idealistic. You do not become conservative because you want to create an egalitarian fantasy land, but because you realize that trying to create one is dangerously prone to hypocrisy and you will end up with the short end of the stick. A lot of people are swayed by liberal rhetoric because it is easy to hold a spiritual belief in an equal, inclusive, and carefree utopia without understanding the details of how it will work. Conservatives are just honest about what they will and will not do, what they like and do not like, and what works and what doesn't. Liberals care more about creating a perfect image of themselves to inflate their social status. This is why conservatism is still relevant in the modern world.
ChockrickBearJun 2, 2020 10:19am EDT
[t]Leftism as hate speech[/t]
You have probably heard about how mass shootings by white supremacists are motivated by rightist ideology that should be eradicated from our diverse and inclusive society, but leftist media outlets not only fail to blame the recent Black Lives Matter riots on leftist ideology, but even go as far as promoting it. Notice how [l=]the CBC emphasizes the anti-racism message and focuses on the peaceful protests[/l], downplaying the violence, theft, and [l=]destruction of property ruining the lives of people who had nothing to do with the death of George Floyd[/l]. Even more amazing when you have an MSNBC reporter standing in front of a burning building and claiming, "[l=]This is mostly a protest. It is not generally speaking unruly.[/l]"

The riots are an indication that the real hate speech is pushed by the left. The history of socialism demonstrated that people are incited to mass violence because they are led to believe their problems are caused by an other group who is somehow getting away with it, with inequality being the (weak) proof. The idea of systemic racism is a leftist conspiracy theory claiming that blacks are inherently equal to whites, but whites have established a socioeconomic system specifically to oppress blacks, so blacks have no choice but to rise up to overthrow the system to establish a more "equitable" system along racial lines.

Never mind that [l=]despite making up only 13% of the US population, blacks make up 52% of the violent criminals, and 92% of black murder victims were killed by other blacks[/l]. Never mind that blacks keep getting killed by the police because they keep doing things that attract the police to them and escalate the situation. Never mind that they only riot because they choose to instead of doing something peaceful and productive with their time and energy. Never mind that there was no mass outrage when white men, [l=]Tony Timpa[/l] and [l=]Daniel Shaver[/l], were also killed by police brutality. Never mind that the whole thing is a problem with psychologically incompetent individuals working as police officers, but leftists make it about race to inflame division and push their anti-capitalist agenda forward. The rioters riot because they have been told that racism is an objective evil that is behind all of their problems, and leftists are the ones who taught them this.

Leftists have no concept of individual responsibility and blame outside forces for their problems because they cannot conceive of how other people can be miles better than them and have preferences that differ from their own. They don't realize that people are treated differently because they think and act differently. They want to punish the law-abiding because they are easier to force into submission to give up their stuff. They dogmatically assume that all races are the same and should have the same outcomes in the hypothetical absence of racism. They treat individuals as nothing more than members of groups, so they attack good people under the belief they are fighting the system. That small business that had nothing to do with anything? It represents capitalism, therefore burn it down and redistribute its wealth because it is still richer than the looters. That cop who never did anything wrong? He represents the system that allowed other cops to kill in cold blood, so shoot him in revenge. The death of one man is a tragedy, but a million is a statistic to these people.

Even the peaceful protests are pointless. What do they hope to accomplish? There is no systemic killing of black people just for being black, only the failure of black people at becoming better people. You see, racism has always been about judging the races by the content of their character. It exists because people can see the differences between the races. It persists because events like the riots only prove it right. Leftists are merely taking advantage of a tragedy to boast about their own virtue while implicitly encouraging black people to bring out their barbarism to tear down the system. As a result, nothing will change as blacks will just keep repeating history and never move forward.
ChockrickBearAug 2, 2020 1:12pm EDT
[t]The morality of self-sacrifice[/t]
The principle that the captain is expected to go down with the ship is a peculiar case of morality that expects the captain to put the lives of others before himself. On one hand, you can interpret it as an egalitarian principle, where the goal is to maximize the number of lives saved and that it is the responsibility of the strong to sacrifice themselves for the weak. On the other hand, it is an anti-utilitarian principle that sacrifices the least replaceable person who has the competence to carry out future missions to secure the victory and prosperity of the people, so it is something that should only be done in a die or die anyways situation.

If you have ever seen Star Trek, the thing to observe is that in a dangerous mission, it is not the captain who dies first, but the lowly security officers. The captain should be protected because his talent is hard to come by and he can do the most good over the long run. First and foremost, the captain's job is to complete missions in accordance to the goals of the organization he works for. He is basically a middle manager conducting business on behalf of his employer to turn a profit. He is to get the job done at minimal cost, not be a martyr for his crew who also signed up knowing the risks. If he cannot complete the mission, he must preserve as many (human) resources as possible so they can be reused. If the ship is reaching the point of no escape and it is not possible to save everyone, the captain should save himself to avoid being just another casualty.

Self-sacrifice is not intrinsically virtuous because it is basically suicide under a delusion of grandeur. It only makes sense when the alternative is a life not worth living, but suicidal people tend to have a biased judgment of alternatives. A captain who chooses to go down with the ship when he can still save himself is likely depressed about his failure and should be dragged off of the bridge, not canonized as a paragon of moral leadership. He has not transcended human nature, he just knows that he will be considered incompetent and fired from his job with a massive red flag on his work history, so he thinks he might as well die with his career to retain his dignity.

If anything, first-hand experience of such an epic failure makes him the best person to understand and prevent it from happening again. Good leaders do not let people's deaths turn them into a brooding, useless husk of a person. They learn to develop a level of psychopathy because the only way to do the most good is to focus on the bigger picture and push forward. They understand that their careers exist because they do far more good than bad, that economic growth creates more life and satisfaction than it costs, that they risk their lives because there is no more fulfilling way to live.
ChockrickBearAug 10, 2020 3:15pm EDT
[t]Why gray morality is the whitest morality[/t]
[l=]Polygon published a face-palming article arguing for more black and white morality in games[/l] on the basis that there are people who are so morally degenerate that they must not be sympathized with and should be exterminated. Of course, the author did not explicitly write those words, but that is the logical implication of what the author is arguing. Seeing the world in such binary terms is the very definition of extremism, and there is great irony in arguing for black and white morality when it puts the author firmly in the black.

It is not that moral grays create a slippery slope to accepting and fostering evil, but that evil is often committed under the belief that you are pursuing the highest good. How can someone overcome the "palpable sense of discomfort even as they commit to a dark path"? By basking in the light without noticing the dark shadow cast behind them. You can see this mentality in the article. The author romanticizes the conviction of the hero without considering the effects of the hero's actions on others, nor does she consider the difference between conviction and self-righteousness. She does not consider that just maybe the bad guys do what they do because they too are in an "endless struggle to remain alive without losing their humanity". She does not consider that wars happen because people try to self-righteously impose their morality on others and strip the targeted people of their sovereignty. She does not consider that "burgeoning social change" is at the heart of every genocide in history.

The author believes in objective morality, but fails to explain who decides that morality and by what criteria. Has she considered that morality is a social construct? Her binary concept of morality makes moralqueer people like me feel unsafe ;). Rather than consider a compromising solution that allows different people to have the different things they want, she unilaterally decided what is good and evil through the examples she gives.

She claims "underpaid and oppressive labor practices" by billion-dollar corporations are evil, yet does not consider that is what it takes to operate a successful business that delivers finished, quality products in a timely manner. The wealth of a company does not change human limitations nor the laws of physics, so you have to work hard regardless. If anything, it is small businesses that cannot afford the fancy equipment and lax schedules to allow their employees to work with less effort, nor can they afford to pay to poach good employees, yet they are still under the same pressure to deliver finished, quality products in a timely manner.

The idea that corporate employees are overworked and underpaid is nonsense when the alternatives have even less capacity to offer anything better. What are you going to do about the small business employees who suffer more despite having less inequality with their top manager? Leftist ideology inevitably leads to the corrupt centralization of power because the only way to include and equalize everyone is to bring them under the rule of one omnipotent, infallible authority that controls all of the wealth in order to "equitably" distribute it, only to realize there is not enough for everyone, so the wealth ends up in the hands of the elite while everyone else is equally miserable.

She claims police violence is evil, yet does not say anything about criminal violence. Does she not realize that the police have no need to be violent if criminals were lawful and co-operative? Does she not realize that criminals commit far more violence than police? Has she consider the possibility that the oppressed are not necessarily good people because your social status says nothing about your moral philosophy? It is amazing that she accuses the police of engaging in a dishonest publicity stunt by kneeling with protesters when Black Lives Matter itself is a mass hysteria that uses one criminal suspect's death to push a neo-Marxist ideology. It has killed innocent people, destroyed the livelihoods of many others, and is threatening "burgeoning social change" that involves controlling people on the basis of race in an attempt to redistribute outcomes based on willful ignorance of human differences. The fact that she considers peaceful revolution "infuriating" only proves the point she is trying to argue against: She is even worse than the people she criticizes.

She claims authoritarianism is evil, yet she considers race to not be a valid personal preference people should be allowed to have. Her idea of freedom excludes those who have what she considers morally degenerate preferences based on slippery slope reasoning that it will lead to criminal behaviour that is already illegal. She does not consider the possibility of a heterogeneous society where polar opposite people can have what they want in their own isolated space. She does not realize that the alternative to the Civil Rights Act is not Jim Crow, but rather, nothing at all to allow people to choose what they want for themselves.

She does not consider that those "championing civil rights" are also "looking out for their own interests", and there is no reason why their interests should take precedence over anyone else's. "Politicians who take away healthcare" are doing what they were voted in to do as the whole point of democracy. But in her view, those voters do not count as people being championed, and politicians who act against her interests cannot be legitimate because there is no way that a sizable number of people can want anything different from what she does. She does not realize that black and white morality is fundamentally authoritarian against whoever she decides is black.

All of her attempts at defining white morality ends up being gray, even dark gray. "Civil rights" is a gray that has been uncritically presented as white, and it has led to the kind of extremist thinking that spawned the article and its acceptance into mainstream media.

The most objective morality I can think of is that which allows people to have what they want without taking away what other people want. There should only be expansion, not redistribution. Being denied access to other people's stuff is not taking away from you, it is protecting their right to use their stuff. If someone refuses to give you what you want, move on and pretend they never existed in the first place. What would you do if there were no wealth? Where do you think everything comes from? All conflict stems from people being entitled to other people's things because life boils down to a game of acquiring the things that make you happy. There can be no fun without acquiring the toys to play with, there can be no love without acquiring the nice, beautiful people to connect with, figuratively and literally. For there to be lasting peace, people must be willing to accept what they have, work for what they want, and not succumb to violent jealousy of those who have more. That is what makes this gray morality the whitest morality.
ChockrickBearNov 15, 2020 3:43am EST
[t]The two kinds of empathy[/t]
The thing about empathy is that it is not telepathic. You cannot actually know what other people think and feel, and you cannot factor in knowledge you don't have. I see the idea of empathy used to support leftist perspectives, but seeing the infiltration of Marxism-inspired ideologies into mainstream academics and media, the mass hysteria of the Black Lives Matter movement, the presence of Islamic extremists in Europe, and the attacks on free expression to protect certain groups over others, it is clear that empathy is not a simple concept.

The first kind of empathy is simply inserting yourself into someone else's position. You become the other person and feel as if what happened to them happened to you. You believe that the problem should be resolved as you would want it to be resolved as someone in that position.

A major problem with this kind of empathy is that you don't consider the context of the situation, nor how the other person is different from you. You just drop yourself into it as if it were a completely random event inflicted on you, disconnected from any sort of coherent narrative of why someone like you would be in that situation in the first place. Without context, it fundamentally biases in favour of perceived victims over perceived aggressors. When you insert yourself into the place of the victim, all you know is that the aggressor is hurting you, so you believe in stopping the aggressor. When you insert yourself in the place of the aggressor, you are just attacking the victim out of rage, psychopathy, racism, or whatever mentality that you treat as self-evident and without nuance. You don't need context to empathize with a victim, but you need context to empathize with an aggressor, so you are prone to dismissing legitimate points the aggressor has, such as the victim being high on drugs, having a criminal record, and resisting arrest. It is hard to empathize with aggressors who know things you do not and have factored that knowledge into their thought process. You have to fill in the gaps with your own assumptions, which makes you prone to straw-manning them, which is ironically lacking in empathy.

This empathy also facilitates a hive mentality. Not only do you lose your individual identity to become someone else, the person you empathize with may not even be the one with the actual problem. A victim suffering leads to an empathizer suffering, which leads to another empathizer empathizing with the empathizer, creating a chain of empathy by proxy. When it has reached a critical mass, more people join simply out of group pressure to conform, which creates a false consensus. There is no consideration whether the original victim is actually worthy of such popularity, no consideration that the empathizers are ignorant and hysterical, and no consideration that a large number of people can be wrong because they are just repeating someone else's delusion to avoid being ostracized. It becomes a collective delusion where everyone is mirroring the next person, which can be traced to only a handful of instigators making a big deal out of nothing in the hopes of consuming [i]your[/i] resources to pursue [i]their[/i] goals. Suffice to say, this kind of empathy is not robust and should not be relied on to establish truth.

* * *

The second kind of empathy is virtualizing the other person's thought pattern as a separate process from your own. Rather than simply insert yourself into the other person's position, you analyze their words and actions and construct a narrative of how they think and how they were led to the situation they are in. You can compare their mentality to your own or others to decide whether they are worthy of praise or criticism. You can even go further by comparing the mentalities of different people, constructing a meta-narrative of what mentality is best, and then composite the most robust mentality.

This kind of empathy is about critical thinking. You do not presume someone is right simply because they suffer, nor presume someone is wrong simply because they hate. You understand that trying to fix a problem can lead to creating an even greater problem because you are choosing between different people's mutually exclusive interests and establishing an order of precedence of whose interests take priority based on your own subjective criteria. The problem with this is that it is highly dependent on your background knowledge and reasoning capability, and you are still capable of making mistakes. When you theorize about people, there are a lot of gaps that need to be filled, and it is easy to spiral into paranoid, conspiratorial thinking. You still need to be a reasonable person who gives people a chance, so it is important to withhold judgment until you have clear evidence of one way or another. Even I fear for my own sanity at times, but I also get the feeling that I am on to something.