[Previous] Liberalism + Popper = TCS | Home | [Next] Fake Burke Quote Attacking Godwin

By Any Means Necessary: A Violent Marxist Cult

(Co-authored with Justin Mallone.)

When you see violent thugs rioting in the streets, you may assume they're strong, scary zealots. They claim to care deeply about strongly-held political views. They present themselves as being so inspired and motivated that they're willing to fight for their ideals.

I want you to reconsider. Most of them are ignorant victims. They are abused and controlled by a few leaders (aka "community organizers"). Just like how cults control, indoctrinate and abuse people. Most of the violent thugs are actually weak, pathetic wretches with no money, no control over their lives, and no idea what's going on. They're sad victims to be pitied, not strong zealots to be feared.

Violence is a serious matter and the police need to provide protection and arrest rioters. Don't walk up to these people for a chat; they're dangerous. But do change your perspective on them.

Yvette Felarca & BAMN

Yvette Felarca is a leader in a left-wing, American, political cult called By Any Means Necessary (BAMN). They use violence for political purposes. They indoctrinate and abuse children. They're Marxists. They've been in the news recently for violently shutting down speeches by conservatives.

The ridiculous full cult name is Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration, and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary.

BAMN was created in 1995 by Attorney Shanta Driver, in Berkeley, California, in order to oppose Proposition 209. Proposition 209 ultimately ended affirmative action in the state's university system. Affirmative action is racist – it's literally about treating people differently according to their race – so BAMN is a racist group. More about BAMN.

Riots and Violence

BAMN participated in violent riots that shut down Milo Yiannopoulos's talk at Berkeley earlier this year, and Felarca defended the riots on TV! She said rioting was necessary to shut down Milo, who she victim-blamed as a fascist. She defined fascist as "someone who’s organizing a mass movement that’s attacking women, immigrants, black people, other minority groups in a movement of genocide." Milo hasn't called for killing anybody. Felarca is a liar who wanted violence first (to suppress ideas she hates) and made up an excuse second. BAMN's violence also led to suppressing the free speech of Ann Coulter and David Horowitz, and the students who invited them, at Berkeley.

Felarca has a history of personally participating in violence. She attacked a man and incited others to attack him at a gathering of white nationalists called the Traditionalist Workers Party in Sacramento in June 2016. That violence left seven people stabbed and nine hospitalized. A California Highway Patrol officer said Felarca's group started the violence, “If I had to say who started it and who didn’t, I’d say the permitted group didn’t start it." A statement from the California Highway Patrol agreed, saying that the Traditionalist Workers Party had obtained a permit and that "non-permitted groups confronted the permitted group, leading to violence."

And this violence is all part of a conscious strategy of, in Felarca's own words, building a "mass militant" movement.

A Danger to Children

This would all be bad enough if Felarca was a full time communist activist working for George Soros. But she's actually a teacher at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley. She uses her position of authority over children to recruit for BAMN during school. She pushes her political agenda when she's supposed to be teaching.

And BAMN isn't just a group of violent communists (that'd be bad enough!). It's worse. It's a cult which abuses children. BAMN lures children to join (including directly from public school) and uses intimidation, threats and force against its own members to prevent them from leaving. It has dozens of dirty tactics including lying to get people psychiatrically institutionalized when they try to leave BAMN and placing guards on people to prevent them from leaving.

BAMN Cult

There are numerous testimonials regarding BAMN's cult-like operation and recruiting methods. Secret Survivors of BAMN is a blog where people who escaped discuss their trauma and how the cult operates. They made it private after BAMN's recent rioting drew attention, but a copy remains publicly available.

I'll present three testimonials so you can judge for yourself what BAMN is really like and whether the police should shut them down:

Jevon's Testimonial

Jevon (PDF mirror) is a UC Berkeley Alumni. He was recruited into BAMN at age 14 and then pressured to leave his family (in Detroit) and live with BAMN members in Oakland. BAMN said he could get legally emancipated soon after and rejoin his family if he wanted to. But after he arrived in Oakland to live with Yvette Felarca, Jevon was instructed to change his name and cut off all contact with friends, family, and even other BAMN members in Detroit. (Isolating people and cutting them off from their old life helps cults control them.)

Jevon wound up being told he could go home after some time had passed, but the time to return home never came, a charade that continued for almost a year. Eventually he reconciled with his family and his mother bought him a plane ticket back to Detroit. But cults don't let members just walk out the door:

When they realized they could not talk me out of leaving, they got physical. Yvette Felarca came into my room one night and instructed me to read out loud a statement that Shanta Driver had written and convinced me to sign about how my family was abusive. Tired of debating my decision with them, I refused. That night, Yvette and other BAMN members took turns sleeping by my bed to “make sure he doesn’t go anywhere.” They confiscated my house keys to restrict my movement.

While trying to make his flight, BAMN members tried to take away his suitcase. Then three cultists assaulted him to grab his phone to prevent him from arranging to leave. Jevon fought off the assault enough for his mom to hear what was going on over the phone, and she called the police. BAMN lied to the police who were then hostile to Jevon. He eventually managed to talk the police into letting him leave after BAMN stole all his money and ID cards.

With the help of a neighbor Jevon made it to the airport and escaped. BAMN still did what it could to punish him for leaving the cult:

When I tried to inform other BAMN members about what had happened to me, particularly other youth many of whom I had recruited and therefore felt responsible for putting at risk, I learned that BAMN had denounced me to everyone. They told people that I had went crazy and turned against the organization and went to the police and that everyone should call off all contact with me. They were also instructed to report my whereabouts to Shanta because they were looking for me to put me in a mental institution.

From talking with people afterwards, Jevon learned that BAMN had treated other people in a similar way to his own nightmare experience.

Alex From Detroit's Testimonial

Alex from Detroit gives an account (PDF mirror) of his experiences with BAMN. He was manipulated by his girlfriend who threatened to dump him if he wasn't in BAMN's inner circle. And he tells us about BAMN's recruiting methods:

So they start out luring kids with field trips and the chance to skip classes for meetings. When I was at [Cass Technical High School] they had a very strong presence because Steve Conn was one of the math teachers and most of their student leadership came directly from Cass. The kids who are just in it for ditching school are [used] mostly as bodies and extra mass during the rallies and protests. They could care less what happens to these kids but the more numbers they have on their side the better the protests look to the media.

School teachers exploit their captive audience to recruit for BAMN. Children come to meetings to get out of school. What kind of system is that? Teachers shouldn't be encouraging kids to cut class and attend Marxist cult meetings instead. And then they use bored, powerless students as extra bodies at political rallies and protests which they sometimes turn violent!

Alex explains how involvement escalates as children are pressured to do more and more BAMN activities:

If you are not just in it for ditching school and had actual political leanings, they invited us to after school meetings where we would discuss current group events or if there was a particular rally, protest or election coming up we would do things to contribute to that, such as making signs and calling people who had signed petitions with their contact information. Here again, is where I specifically was pressured into doing things that made me uncomfortable. I do not like talking on the phone. I can talk to family members and I have, after years of doing it, been able to be comfortable talking at work. I used to have extreme anxiety about it. I expressed this very clearly to my ex and to the leaders of BAMN but was given the impression that there would be consequences if I didn’t ie: Being ejected from BAMN’s inner circle which would lead to being dumped.

It's cruel to make Alex work the phones when he could have easily done a different task instead. But uncomfortable, stressed, anxious people are easier to control. BAMN wanted to keep Alex off-balance.

Alex also describes being pressured to attend events even when he didn't know what he was protesting or why. In one city council meeting, Alex read a new Harry Potter book and only looked up or chanted when another BAMN member elbowed him.

At a political debate, Alex didn't know what he was protesting. His mom asked him but he couldn't answer. He was "instructed to come along to the protest, hold a sign, chant something and walk in a circle within a specific radius outside of [the protest location]. There was no other information given."

Interestingly, BAMN seems to recognize the ignorance of its members. BAMN's own pledge says:

To those who criticize the legitimacy of our walkouts or other youth-led mass actions by saying “most of the students/youth cannot even say what they are fighting for”, I say rest assured we are always fighting for our dignity, equality, respect and justice.

So the kids don't learn anything at school from their BAMN teachers who tell them to cut class for BAMN, and then they don't learn anything at BAMN either!

Jason Wright's Testimonial

Jason Wright's testimonial (PDF mirror) is about the Revolutionary Workers League, a predecessor to BAMN involving some of the same people like Yvette Felarca and Shanta Driver.

Jason reports members being publicly condemned for their private romantic problems, and then engaging in "Maoist self-criticism" where they talk about the struggles of revolutionary consciousness under capitalism and profusely apologize to the group for their private behavior.

What happens if you privately question any RWL decisions, such as kicking someone out because he didn't want to financially support a jobless RWL member? Shanta Driver "began shrieking" that Jason was a racist (the person kicked out was white, the person to be financially supported was black).

Being denounced as a racist by a cult leader had consequences:

The experience had a somewhat scarring effect on me in that it showed a number of comrades, already [possessing] a certain appetite for Stalinist style [bureaucratism], that I was fair game for criticism in the leaderships eyes. As such my political life was for several months very difficult in Albany. Sarah W. and Yvette F. were continually denouncing me for one thing or another and I was held at [candidate] membership for an extended period of time.

RWL did not care about Jason's health or well being. People are easier to control while in extreme poverty and dependent on the cult for shelter and food:

While formally enrolled in college I neither attended classes nor worked. The RWL did not have many paid staffers, nonetheless I was subsidized (in an extremely minimal manner) by the organization in order so that I could work for the org. full time. I was constantly broke, without money for books or an adequate diet, couch surfing at various comrades apartments.

Later, RWL lied to have Jason involuntarily held at a psychiatric facility in order to prevent him from dissenting at an upcoming meeting. Jason explains:

I was horrified, I never felt so trapped against my will.

[...]

the RWL, in ordering comrades to undergo treatment, is utilizing a form of [bourgeois] medical process to marginalize inactive or oppositional cadre and isolate them from the party. This is horrible.

Cults don't allow dissent.

When Jason and his girlfriend decided to leave the cult, he was in a such a powerless situation that they had difficulty with basic matters like bus fare and packing luggage.

The RWL must have sensed [something] was amiss [...] From that moment on we were never left alone together.

They actually risked packing luggage to leave while being watched by a spy who, thankfully, didn't rat them out.

Felarca Indoctrinates Students

The Berkeley Unified School District has catalogued allegations against Felarca going back to 2009 which it detailed to Felarca in a 30-page letter. These included "immoral conduct, evident unfitness for service, persistent violation of or refusal to obey school laws, dishonesty, unprofessional conduct and unsatisfactory performance." Berkeley Unified School District's complaints include:

  • In 2009, Felarca "repeatedly solicited students to participate in protests" against a proposed charter school during the work day, in defiance of a formal reprimand.
  • In 2011, she asked for permission to take an after-school club on an all-day field trip to protest against Proposition 209, and was told she couldn't because it would be a chance for her to "indoctrinate" students and violate what she'd been told in 2009 regarding non-permitted activities.
  • In 2013, Felarca repeatedly used leave to attend immigrant rights marches in Washington, D.C., which is not a permissible purpose for leave. They docked her pay and told her to stop, but she kept doing it. When they tried to have a private meeting with her, “employees in the District office were confronted with a loud group of over ten young people … chanting and carrying signs” protesting “teacher harassment.” Felarca refused to answer how the students knew about the meeting.
  • Felarca wrote a celebratory Facebook post that the District was backing down on discipline and "encouraged supporters to sign a petition that called Felarca a hero and role model, and said she should be allowed to use personal leave at her discretion."
  • The District said “it was evident that you and your [By Any Means Necessary] representatives were actively trying to brainwash and manipulate these young people to serve your own selfish interests in not being held accountable to the same rules that apply to everyone else. As a teacher, your conduct was particularly reprehensible.” [Emphasis added.]
  • In 2014, Felarca allegedly misused her leave again, protesting UC regents and participating in Black Lives Matter demonstrations. She then lied and claimed she had no recollection of these events, despite the fact that:
    [Felarca] had taken two full days off work to attend, had spoken during public comment [as documented on YouTube], had a large bullhorn in [her] hand outside and spoke to a large group of students, and passionately and loudly advocated for [her] cause; and despite the fact that [she] clearly wanted the attention and media coverage. [Felarca's] continued and repeated claims, frequently accompanied by long pauses and a smirk on [her] face, that [she] could not recall being there, were patently dishonest.
  • In 2015, Felarca requested permission to take students to immigration court for the hearing of a woman seeking asylum, and didn't disclose BAMN's involvement in the case. Felarca's request was denied, but she went anyways and was interviewed on TV during the event.
  • The District also claims that a parent contacted them and said Felarca had “marginalized Caucasian students” in her classroom and presented controversial issues in a biased manner.

After all this and her Sacramento violence, Felarca finally was put on leave in September of 2016.

What was Felarca's reaction to being put on leave? She followed her previous pattern of weaponizing her students and other supporters against the administration in a high-pressure campaign.

At an October 5, 2016 meeting of the Berkeley School Board, various Felarca supporters spoke out, with some making references to Felarca teaching them their "rights" as immigrants as they were cheered on by the crowd. One particularly troubling scene makes clear how much this was an organized political action and not a spontaneous outpouring of support from students. A young boy appears to be directed to read a statement by a woman wearing a BAMN t-shirt. In the course of the statement, he says "That's not fair, that the District don't let Yvette bring kids to protest." A young girl speaks immediately after (with the BAMN minder still present), repeating the same theme and saying "It's not fair what you guys are doing, because Ms. Felarca deserves to take kids out to protest on her free time" and concluded her statement by bashing President Trump. Observe that this defense of Felarca is the very behavior the District had been asking her to stop since 2009 (that is, taking students to political protests).

The October 5 meeting ultimately descended into chaos when protestors started shouting & chanting when the Board attempted to move to the next agenda item.

Felarca also filed a lawsuit against the District in October, claiming that "BUSD had interrogated her students, removed her from a staff meeting, and threatened to withhold funding, for longstanding programs, from colleagues who expressed support for her." And Shanta Driver filed a lawsuit on behalf of 8 students against the District in November "alleging [the students] were racially targeted and intimidated by district officials."

Felarca was ultimately reinstated on November 2, 2016. One might reasonably think this a result of Felarca's high pressure tactics and the use of her students as weapons against the BUSD. But it may be more because Felarca has friends in high places: the Mayor of Berkeley, Jesse Arreguin, is a member of BAMN's Facebook group and Facebook friends with Felarca.

And what did Felacra do in 2017 after keeping her schoolteacher job? Organize anti-free-speech rioting (discussed earlier) which destroyed over $100,000 of property.

It's disturbing that Felarca still has a job as a school teacher after all this violence, indoctrination of children, and refusal to do what her employer asks.

A Sad Story of Victims

Members of BAMN and other "anti-fascist" organizations present themselves as zealots so committed to their political cause that they're willing to use violence.

But the reality is different. We've seen that many members are children abused by the BAMN cult. People join to skip school classes or get lured away from their family and aren't allowed to leave. Children are tricked by authority figures like their teachers. Many are victims, not zealots.

And then BAMN uses criminal tactics to prevent members from leaving: violence, guards, lying to members, lying to the police, and lying to psychiatrists. As well as pressure, psychological manipulation, denunciations, etc...

This is a monstrous evil. The cult leaders should go to jail. But the victims actually could use rescuing.

Perspective

BAMN's leaders are violent criminals who are a lot better at exploiting children than understanding politics and economics. They should be prosecuted and shut down.

The bulk of BAMN's membership are abuse victims who would benefit from learning American values and the American way of life. They're not protesting because they disagree with society – they never learned how to be part of society in the first place.

Next time you see an anti-free-speech riot, remember it's just a facade. Behind the mask of strong, violent zealots are weak, pathetic sheep. They may be able to throw a few rocks and start fires but, as usual, evil is impotent.


Elliot Temple on May 9, 2017

Comments (59)

It's not surprising people like Felarca can be found teaching in schools. After all, dreadful Marxist books like "The Critical Pedagogy Reader" are popular at teaching colleges. "Critical Pedagogy" used to be fringe stuff. Now mainstream.

Anonymous at 11:10 PM on May 11, 2017 | #8575
Bill Ayers the Weather Underground terrorist embraced and wrote about Critical Pedagogy.

Anonymous at 11:18 PM on May 11, 2017 | #8576
Antonia Darder, who wrote “The Critical Pedagogy Reader” admires Paulo Freire. He wrote “The Pedagogy of the Oppressed”:

http://www.historyisaweapon.com/defcon2/pedagogy/index.html

In this book, Che Guevera is spoken highly of. Eg:

> Even Guevara's unmistakable style of narrating his and his comrades' experiences, of describing his contacts with the "poor, loyal" peasants in almost evangelical language, reveals this remarkable man's deep capacity for love and communication. Thence emerges the force of his ardent testimony to the work of another loving man: Camilo Torres, "the guerrilla priest.”

To help develop his argument, Freire brings in Lenin:

> Lenin's famous statement: "Without a revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary movement"1 means that a revolution is achieved with neither verbalism nor adtivism, but rather with praxis, that is, with reflection and action directed at the structures to be transformed. The revolutionary effort to transform these structures radically cannot designate its leaders as its thinkers and the oppressed as mere doers.

Marx gets referenced numerous times to develop a point. Eg:

> 11. This rigidity should not be identified with the restraints that must be imposed on the former oppressors so they cannot restore the oppressive order. Rather, it refers to the revolution which becomes stagnant and turns against the people, using the old repressive, bureaucratic State apparatus (which should have been drastically suppressed, as Marx so often emphasized).

Teachers College Columbia University gave Freire some prestigious award:

http://www.tc.columbia.edu/articles/2005/november/four-institutions-educators-receive-honor/

> The Center for Education Outreach & Innovation (CEO&I) of Teachers College at Columbia University today announced the four winners of its first annual Lifelong Learning Award: the Chautauqua Institution (and its president Thomas Becker), Brazilian educator Paulo Freire (posthumously), educator Maxine Greene and PBS (Public Broadcasting Service).

Martin Luther King, Jr., Middle School’s “Edible Schoolyard” has a link to some Freire-inspired school:

http://edibleschoolyard.org/program/paulo-freire-social-justice-charter-school-community-garden

“Edible Schoolyard” itself looks like an implementation of “critical pedagogy”. Director Kyle Cornforth’s resource list includes

http://www.conspireforchange.org/?page_id=4

This has things like Thanksgiving is a celebration of genocide. Her complete resource list is here:

http://edibleschoolyard.org/resource/edible-schoolyard-anti-oppression-resource-list-2016

Kyle Cornforth and Yvette Felarca don’t seem very dissimilar.

It’s very scary that Marxism and Critical Pedagogy are so mainstream in American schools. How is this stuff so popular?

Anonymous at 9:51 PM on May 12, 2017 | #8578
Banking concept of education in "Pedagogy of the Oppressed":

http://www.historyisaweapon.com/defcon2/pedagogy/pedagogychapter2.html

> In the banking concept of education, knowledge is a gift bestowed by those who consider themselves knowledgeable upon those whom they consider to know nothing. Projecting an absolute ignorance onto others, a characteristic of the ideology)of oppression, negates education and knowledge as processes of inquiry. The teacher presents himself to his students as their necessary opposite; by considering their ignorance absolute, he justifies his own existence. The students, alienated like the slave in the Hegelian dialectic, accept their ignorance as justifying the teachers existence—but, unlike the slave, they never discover that they educate the teacher.
>
> The raison d'etre of libertarian education, on the other hand, lies in its drive towards reconciliation. Education must begin with the solution of the teacher-student contradiction, by reconciling the poles of the contradiction so that both are simultaneously teachers and students.
>
> This solution is not (nor can it be) found in the banking concept. On the contrary, banking education maintains and even stimulates the contradiction through the following attitudes and practices, which mirror oppressive society as a whole:
>
> the teacher teaches and the students are taught;
> the teacher knows everything and the students know nothing;
> the teacher thinks and the students are thought about;
> the teacher talks and the students listen—meekly;
> the teacher disciplines and the students are disciplined;
> the teacher chooses and enforces his choice, and the students comply;
> the teacher acts and the students have the illusion of acting through the action of the teacher;
> the teacher chooses the program content, and the students (who were not consulted) adapt to it;
> the teacher confuses the authority of knowledge with his or her own professional authority, which she and he sets in opposition to the freedom of the students;
> the teacher is the Subject of the learning process, while the pupils are mere objects.

Some of this sounds superficially like things TCS would say.

Anonymous at 10:32 PM on May 12, 2017 | #8579
> It’s very scary that Marxism and Critical Pedagogy are so mainstream in American schools. How is this stuff so popular?

Almost everyone is a socialist.

The schools are controlled by the left.

People don't like Ayn Rand.

People are tortured for the first 20 years of their lives to ruin their minds.

Anonymous at 11:14 PM on May 12, 2017 | #8580
> Some of this sounds superficially like things TCS would say.

it's got some liberalism and anti-authority stuff.

ppl take bits of liberalism and bring them up when it favors some conclusion they want. it's very biased. they'll use a little liberalism here and there to serve their purposes, but they won't be consistent, principled liberals.

Anonymous at 11:17 PM on May 12, 2017 | #8581

By Any Means Necessary? No! Let's Bring Down BAMN By The Peaceful Legal Means Necessary

Thanks for this. I've used as the basis for my daily video.

By Any Means Necessary? No! Let's Bring Down BAMN By The Peaceful Legal Means Necessary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CuqaR85IEs&feature=youtu.be

Simon Harris at 4:27 AM on May 13, 2017 | #8582
Nice video, Simon. I like clips you mix in. Good points about how the Sacramento violence was an intentional, planned tactic!

Elliot Temple at 7:23 AM on May 13, 2017 | #8583
Simon's other video on BAMN has more good info:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mf5QKM81Z14

Anonymous at 8:50 AM on May 13, 2017 | #8584
> ppl take bits of liberalism and bring them up when it favors some conclusion they want. it's very biased. they'll use a little liberalism here and there to serve their purposes, but they won't be consistent, principled liberals.

Yes. Freire was aware of Popper, references him and draws on some of his ideas. It's sad. Like Soros, Freire is an enemy of freedom. Freire's "Education as the Practice of Freedom" sounds good but he twists so the result is Marxism, not freedom.

Anonymous at 5:14 PM on May 13, 2017 | #8585
Popper is a pretty bad liberal, he's just good on epistemology. He was for TV censorship and government doing various stuff. He never wrote good things about capitalism.

Good liberals are people like Mises and Rand. Popper's politics was nothing like theirs.

curi at 6:08 PM on May 13, 2017 | #8586
> Popper is a pretty bad liberal, he's just good on epistemology. He was for TV censorship and government doing various stuff. He never wrote good things about capitalism.

What an arse. He would have been anti-Trump had he been alive now. Even in his epistemology he had a tendency to drone on and use convoluted sentences. Random example from quick google search:

> This allows us to think of knowledge produced by men as analogous to the honey produced by bees: the honey is made by bees, stored by bees, and consumed by bees; and the individual bee which consumes honey will not, in general, consume only the bit it has produced itself: honey is also consumed by the drones which have not produced any at all (not to mention that stored treasure of honey which the bees may lose to bears or beekeepers).

Take a fucking breath man. And who uses two colons in a sentence as well as parentheses? Academic blowhards it seems.

Anonymous at 11:36 PM on May 14, 2017 | #8587
[Comment removed by Elliot Temple. I think anon meant well but I still don't want to leave information about how to find my location in comments here.]

Anonymous at 4:42 AM on May 15, 2017 | #8588
Popper advocated simple writing. He just wasn't great at it. He did better than most of his colleagues. He came from Austria and and had to learn both English and also the writing style of the English-speaking world (which is different and better than what he was used to in Austria). and yeah Popper was around academics when learning English writing. I think Popper also improved his writing over time.

Most people are bad at simple writing. DD is worse at it than me (and his books are worse at it than his IMs). i think DD was partially trying not to violate audience expectations. btw people care enough about shit like *lowercase letters*, and other casual stuff, to actually complain to me about it.

People in general put lots of work into trying to sound smart. even dumb, unimpressive people. like if you look at FI posts, you can see some posters ask short, simple questions. and then other posters are always writing something more complicated. they won't do it. they take whatever they write and fuck it up by adding complexity to make it fit what they think intelligent writing is like.

curi at 8:09 AM on May 15, 2017 | #8589
I was going to add a comment to say remove my comment but see you have already done that. Be more careful in future.

Anonymous at 10:05 AM on May 15, 2017 | #8590
> People in general put lots of work into trying to sound smart. even dumb, unimpressive people. like if you look at FI posts, you can see some posters ask short, simple questions. and then other posters are always writing something more complicated. they won't do it. they take whatever they write and fuck it up by adding complexity to make it fit what they think intelligent writing is like.

They want to give their words authority. They want to protect themselves from criticism. They want fake agreement. They want not to be understood. They are scared of being judged.

Anonymous at 1:55 AM on May 18, 2017 | #8591
> They want to protect themselves from criticism.

But it *causes* criticism.

They try to protect themselves from conventional false criticisms instead of typical true criticisms that would be posted to FI. Doesn't make much sense...

Similarly they do get judged for this. It's a terrible strategy for FI. Maybe it'd work better on some other people.

Anonymous at 3:14 AM on May 18, 2017 | #8592
They wrote to impress, which caused criticism they did not want, then doubled-down on their mistake. Doubling-down happens so often.

Anonymous at 1:14 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8593
@#8593

☹️

how to fix?

Anonymous at 1:27 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8594
#8593

will you link some examples?

Anonymous at 2:44 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8595
This is very eye opening and frightening. We need to be more vigilant and protect ourselves and our children. Very well written. Thank you
Elliot Temple and Justin Mallone.

Isabella Svott at 3:56 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8596
> how to fix?

The problem is very difficult. Their need to impress and to lean on authority is so ingrained that solving the problem is tantamount to taking apart their mind and reassembling it.

The only real hope is finding people whose minds are not so broken. That Is also hard - children are not very accessible for example. Trying to spread good philosophical ideas in the culture in an easy to access way is the best approach I think. Most people are just gonna continue doing whatever they are doing but if you reach thousands and turn a few then the seed will blossom in time. The people you most need to reach are children.

Anonymous at 10:58 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8597
> Trying to spread good philosophical ideas in the culture in an easy to access way

have you done any of this?

curi at 11:04 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8598
No, I am not good enough at philosophy,

Anonymous at 11:12 PM on May 18, 2017 | #8599
> No, I am not good enough at philosophy,

why not?

Anonymous at 1:06 AM on May 19, 2017 | #8600
>> No, I am not good enough at philosophy,

> why not?

I love recursion lol.

Anonymous at 11:36 PM on May 19, 2017 | #8601
#8601

so? that is a non-answer

Anonymous at 11:38 PM on May 19, 2017 | #8602
it was a joke. a generic true answer to the question "why are you not good enough at philosophy" is "because I am not good enough at philosophy". learning philosophy makes one better at learning philosophy.

Anonymous at 11:51 PM on May 19, 2017 | #8603
so why don't you learn philosophy?

Anonymous at 11:52 PM on May 19, 2017 | #8604

Anonymous at 4:19 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8605
> so why don't you learn philosophy?

my problem is living by it. example: i know "paths forward" but how good at it am I? shit. like i don't post to FI list. i read philosophical stuff but don't test my understanding by posting about it. i tend to be reclusive and let very few people get to know me and my ideas. i hate social stuff. i often cut off communication with people cuz i get bored or am preoccupied with something else or can't be bothered replying or something.

if u ain't living by philosophy u don't really know philosophy. i need to learn to live it more.

Anonymous at 9:11 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8607
> my problem is living by it. example: i know "paths forward" but how good at it am I?

why do you think you know it? what have you done to test that claim?

and knowledge of paths forward comes in degrees. not just you do or don't know it. maybe you know half of it but you don't know some parts and could learn more details for parts you do know.

> preoccupied with something else

what other stuff do you prioritize above reason/ideas/etc? why?

curi at 9:23 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8608
I know knowledge comes in degrees. you're reading what I wrote too literally? my post says i'm shit at paths forward and concludes I don't really know it very well at all. I think I know some stuff about it cuz I've read the blog post here, FI posts, and watched Alan Forester's youtube vid. i've also explained the idea in convo.

> what other stuff do you prioritize above reason/ideas/etc? why?

what stuff wouldn't involve reason/ideas/etc? i see social stuff might not. i avoid social.

Anonymous at 10:48 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8609
> you're reading what I wrote too literally?

you seem to be blaming me for replying to what you wrote instead of what you meant.

it would have been better if you replied to what i wrote more literally. i asked 4 questions and you didn't give direct, literal answers to any of them. (though I guess you're intentionally avoiding answering what you do instead because it would receive criticism.)

> I think I know some stuff about it cuz I've read the blog post here, FI posts, and watched Alan Forester's youtube vid.

it's very easy to completely misunderstand it after doing that. errors are inevitable and you don't mention any error correction in your list of things you did.

in addition to knowing this for theoretical reasons (like the error correction argument), we can also observe it IRL. e.g. millions of Ayn Rand readers have badly misunderstood Objectivism.

curi at 11:13 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8610
revising my sentence above to:

> i often cut off communication with people cuz i get bored or am preoccupied with something else or am scared of criticism or can't be bothered replying or something

i missed something important didn't I? That'll be why I don't do "paths forward" right?

Anonymous at 11:48 PM on May 20, 2017 | #8611
me being scared of criticism is fucking stupid. I need to resolve that problem.

Anonymous at 12:34 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8612
so like millions of Ayn Rand readers think she's into induction and not falllibility?

The only error correction I did was thinking about it in my own mind and I know that is a bad path forward.

Anonymous at 12:40 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8613
> so like millions of Ayn Rand readers think she's into induction and not falllibility?

yes. also tons of them don't understand capitalism. and don't understand that socialism is authoritarian and incompatible with freedom *in all cases* (rather than just sucks in some cases but it could work if you got the details right with enough voting or the right rulers in charge or if you could just persuade people to be nicer or whatever).

and you know all the people who think Ayn Rand's ideas are "childish" or dumb or wouldn't work? they are revealing their own ignorance of her actual ideas. sometimes they know some of her conclusions but not her reasoning. but lots of times they just get her conclusions wrong too. like some people think she decided that business monopolies were an acceptable downside of capitalism that's worth the price in return for the various other benefits of capitalism. (she didn't ever say that? of course. people just make stuff up all the time, often relating to their own assumptions about how stuff works.)

curi at 12:47 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8614
> also tons of them don't understand capitalism. and don't understand that socialism is authoritarian and incompatible with freedom *in all cases* (rather than just sucks in some cases but it could work if you got the details right with enough voting or the right rulers in charge or if you could just persuade people to be nicer or whatever).

yes, there is no good path for socialism. it is an horrifically bad idea. any socialist is a would-be tyrant. people in their millions died awful deaths in places like the Kolyma Peninsula and somehow, despite these ghastly atrocities, the idea of socialism survives and keeps coming back. it is responsible for more deaths than any other idea in history. as you said, it is authoritarian and cannot be otherwise. socialism cannot be allowed to get a grip on America. the free world would come to an end. the enlightenment would be in grave peril. unfortunately, too many americans don't understand this.

Anonymous at 1:55 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8615
similarly all modes of reasoning other than the Popperian one are authoritarian and incompatible with freedom *in all cases*.

Anonymous at 2:12 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8616
question to FI people: you guys are rea

Anonymous at 2:28 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8617
Sorry phone glitch

Anonymous at 2:29 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8618
> me being scared of criticism is fucking stupid. I need to resolve that problem.

why did you say "fucking"? maybe you're disgusted of it? hate it?

it would help to change that disgust/hate to curiosity.

Anonymous at 4:31 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8619
> the idea of socialism survives and keeps coming back. it is responsible for more deaths than any other idea in history.

how many people died due to socialism?

how many people died due to Islam?

Anonymous at 4:34 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8620
> the idea of socialism survives and keeps coming back. it is responsible for more deaths than any other idea in history.

Islam is a type of socialism. So do you count the deaths from islam as deaths from socialism ?

Anonymous at 7:36 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8622
> Islam is a type of socialism.

explain

Anonymous at 10:31 AM on May 21, 2017 | #8623
>me being scared of criticism is fucking stupid. I need to resolve that problem.

Do you know why you are scared of criticism?

Anonymous at 1:09 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8624
>> Islam is a type of socialism.

> explain

Socialism is a system where the individual is controlled by the collective by controlling wealth.

Islam is a system where the individual is controlled by the collective too. What is controlled? Wealth -- you're supposed to give 2.5% of your wealth each year, up to 20% for certain kinds of wealth. And thoughts.

Anonymous at 2:44 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8625
Islam's control is more religious/ideological than wealth-based.

Socialism isn't just any form of collectivism. It's a specific thing.

Anonymous at 2:46 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8626
i don't see how 2.5% tithes compare to not having private property. just because a religion has some collectivist elements and a price above 0 doesn't make it socialism. you haven't identified what the major, important attributes of socialism or Islam are.

> Socialism is a system where the individual is controlled by the collective by controlling wealth.

you ought to find a good statement from e.g. Mises.

Anonymous at 3:47 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8627
Hey anon debating Islam and socialism you are answering as though you are me and confusing ppl. my last comment was #.8616. I'm signing as SOL from now on.

SOL at 5:30 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8628
Typo #8616

SOL at 5:32 PM on May 21, 2017 | #8629
> why did you say "fucking"? maybe you're disgusted of it? hate it?

i don’t think i get disgusted at myself or hate parts of myself. maybe i’m wrong? wrote i wrote sounds like part of me in contempt of another part of me.

> it would help to change that disgust/hate to curiosity.

i like the idea of being curious about one’s own mind. i’m thinking whether i’m curious enough about my mind. i suspect not. i can see it’s very very common that people do not have curiousity about their own minds - they lost their curiousity growing up.

SOL at 12:39 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8630
> how many people died due to socialism?

> how many people died due to Islam?

What problem are you trying to solve?

SOL at 12:42 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8631
> Do you know why you are scared of criticism?

not really. I can offer some guesses. like maybe i have some image of myself and i’ll find out i’m not living up to that image and feel bad about myself or something. or maybe part of me is scared about change it could bring?

SOL at 1:29 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8632
>>> the idea of socialism survives and keeps coming back. it is responsible for more deaths than any other idea in history.

>> how many people died due to socialism?

>> how many people died due to Islam?

> What problem are you trying to solve?

i think the idea of islam is responsible for more deaths than the idea of socialism.

i already knew of islam's death count: ~270million. and this figure does not include muslim on muslim killing and also muslims killing exmuslims.

http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2014/05/the_greatest_murder_machine_in_history.html


i just did a search for deaths due to socialism. it numbers less than 150million.

http://www.wnd.com/2012/08/socialisms-death-count/


Socialism did it in a much shorter time though, like the last 100 years. compared to Islam's 1400 years.

Anonymous at 4:03 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8633
> i think the idea of islam is responsible for more deaths than the idea of socialism.

Are you claiming then that Islam is more dangerous? If so, what's the explanation for that?

for the Islam deaths figure you quoted there is a lot of estimation going on. do you agree with how they've done that? have you checked the sources? I agree Islam has caused a great many deaths but is the 270 million figure something that would stand FI level scrutiny?

SOL at 4:48 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8634
>> i think the idea of islam is responsible for more deaths than the idea of socialism.

> Are you claiming then that Islam is more dangerous? If so, what's the explanation for that?

i think that islam wouldn't be very dangerous without non-muslims helping islam kill non-muslims. so i think a bigger problem than islam is ideas non-muslims have about how to deal with islam.

> for the Islam deaths figure you quoted there is a lot of estimation going on. do you agree with how they've done that? have you checked the sources? I agree Islam has caused a great many deaths but is the 270 million figure something that would stand FI level scrutiny?

i haven't researched that.

Anonymous at 5:08 AM on May 22, 2017 | #8635
> i haven't researched that.

why?

SOL at 5:55 PM on May 22, 2017 | #8638

What do you think?

(This is a free speech zone!)