Two Little Subjects: The Internet and Racism

The Internet has indeed arrived for all of us, and it is now complete. Here we go, 24/7, every day: Problem x. Problem y. This bad thing, that bad thing. Unsolvable problem Z! This stupidity, that assclown. Fucked-up shit here, crapola there. Dumbass humans, idiot politics, dead people for no reason, mysterious plagues, psychopathy in power, drinking, my views of this or that, plenty of nonsensical religious testimonies, hurt feelings, weird compulsions of the human enculturated brain- me. mine, the outside world and its irredeemable awfulness, and then the good stuff, the hopium windup, this proposal for social uplift that can’t even get out of its weed bed, that big thinker’s quotable quote for this or that, that big work of art, that inroad that will lead to world peace and wealth down the line, sometime, if we make it.

Against this now universal techno-dystopia, Jonathan Crary asserts in Scorched Earth the sacredness of face-to-face meetings, New England Town Meetings, and various big artists of the past. Fine critique, wrong solutions, as is usual at this level. Art Prof. Crary writes with deep research and with great command about the dysto-present, but, well, – face-to-face meetings were demystified by Erving Goffman’s everyday sociology decades ago, New England Town Meetings are the definition of tedium, and neither art nor the canon of rarified intellectual thought has done thing to stop the relentless damage to human potential wrought by the inherited supersystem. Neil Postman was the proto-Crary in going after TV in the 80s and 90s, and Crary just updates the target, with the same method of bilious discountenance of any pleasure to come from any generational forms of Big Tech, which is seriously wrong. A life of nose constantly stuffed into books is the same denial of life’s plenitude that is or has been exemplified by the cultural obsessives of any given post-WWII period: comic-book aficionados to gamers to sports fans to Facebookers. Humans deserve their cultural trinkets wherever they can be found on the ground. Let us, let them, grub-snuffle around while we can, OK, Art Prof?

What humans don’t need, they will get, and what they will get today is more anti-sociology, which is even worse than anti-history. The US, for example, has been home to the two worst holocausts visited on any group of people, but that’s not what concerns the new editors of Free Inquiry, a once-lively mostly-atheist micro-production with far livelier articles than most any other surviving periodical. They were warned in a letter to the editor that they risked becoming “an old boys club, of mostly male, mostly older authors,” but boy oh boy did they double down on that angle in an issue entitle “Humanism and Wokism – and the Way Forward.”

If you want to read further on this line of skeptical inquiry, or whatever you want to call it, you would have to forget entirely A) the recent election of an out-racist white power President still breathing out toxic fumes to his racist followers and B) the historical holocaust against racialized minorities in the US. If you can disregard those two mighty factors, why then, you are ready for the asinine piffle that Ayn Rand libertarians like to trumpet about the alleged sanctity of the “individual.” Here’s the American Legion pledge of humanism in the editorial by Robyn E. Blumner:

Not only is one’s individual sovereignty more essential to the humanist project than one’s group affiliation, but fighting for individual freedom – which includes freedom of conscience, speech, and inquiry – is part of the writ-large agenda of humanism…. Good people with humanist hearts have been pilloried if they have don’t subscribe to every jot and tittle of the identitarian gospel.

“Robyn E. Blumner, ” Identitarianism is Incompatible with Humanism, Free Inquiry June/July 2022, pgs. 4-5.

Ms. Blumer, and her slavish cohort of knuckle-dragging libertarians featured in the issue, wrap themselves in the mantle of “individual freedom,” like the neocons and the fascists, because it is a convenient shield against the inherited group identity that has benefited them in ways they are too obtuse or small-minded to consider. Sooner or later, for just about every white intellectual or writer of any stature, opining about race gets them into contortions to justify their inane or puerile anti-sociology. Racism was built on the fictions of race as science, but the reality of social consequences of racism throughout generation after generation should be undeniable. Exactly who has been “pilloried” other than jackasses who mostly deserved it? Sure, an excess or two here or there, but a entire mass of innocent folks being “pilloried”?

That’s so to Barry Kosmin, a former quasi-academic.

We secular humanists should have the courage of our convictions and reject all types of unearned preferences and privileges, including an explicit racism that professes to be anti-racist. Only a return to policies based on individual worth and competence can prevent divisiveness in society, dysfunction in working environments, and the marginalization of minorities. In today’s dangerous world, liberal democracies are under economic and security threats, so they need to harness all the human talent they have available by expanding educational opportunities and inclusion.

Barry Kosmin, “Op-Ed: Exclusion. Inclusion, Talents, and Quotas, ” Free Inquiry, June/July 2022, pg. 11.

This idiocy is not from the Cato Institute, or from the KKK, or from Donald Trump, Jr., but from within the walls of secular humanism itself. This is a backlash to a whiplash, the one from 2016 to 2020 that saw up-front racism once again on center stage, and it reveals the out-of-touch insipidity of the superficial professional class. Metrics of racial disparity abound from top to bottom in American society, reflecting the dismal inheritance of the top two of history’s worst holocausts of the mass murder of people by other people based on a a fatuous group identity (white Christian conquerors), yet instead of talking about the real r-word, reparations, these professed liberals join with their eliminationist, death-dealing conservative “opponents” to sign praises to the almighty “in-de-vid-ju-auwule.” (Check Brain Regan for his epic pronunciation of the term in a jaunty bit).

Sure, we can dream, as not-nearly -as-bad columnist Shadia B. Drury does of “a plurality of diverse cultural elements mingling through the creative powers of individuals to create a single shared reality,” but this is La-La- land pie-in-the-sky, very convenient bafflegab for those whose lives have been born aloft through the invisible magic of fictitious group advantage. If you want to take a peek around outside the gated community or the ivory tower, racism continues to exert horrific suffering and death evident in the bantustans and war zones and redlined districts of the US, it’s back bigger and better than ever, and yet it’s in fashion in former intellectual circles to complain about some geezer losing their award or coffee privileges. If we want to actually get serious in this late stage of “civilization,” let’s start with reparations, and let’s start with Mitch McConnell’s houses and money, and go from there. If there’s an “individual” to blame, and there really would be no shortage of suitable “individuals,” why not start with him?

2 Comments

  1. Yeah, what kind of “sick son-of-a-bitch” would even imply that Muricans of both sides of the two inch-wide poles are racist?

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