Totalitarianism for Housewives

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8 Responses

  1. Han Fei says:

    In ancient Chinese erotic flipbook “Lupin III”, there was a character named Ishikawa Goemon who was a living image of an Edo period figure, down to the antiquated manner of speech, the kamishimo outfit and a steel-cutting sword tucked in his belt. When people questioned his choice of fashion and conduct, he would reply “I’m the one who dresses and acts normally. It’s everyone else who’s gone insane”.

    At the end of your video I couldn’t help but notice an untenable contradiction. You said something to the effect that people in the society whose principles have been compromised, can’t help but take normalcy to be walking in step to the direction that the compromise has taken.

    Uh huh.

    I told you this several times before but please don’t take offense at my words. In Eastern Europe, your notion of normalcy, in spite of all the economic dissatisfaction you might experience, is still tied to the patriarchal, “backward” way of life embraced by your cultures since times immemorial, which despite all the upheavals and tragedies faced in recent history, has never been eradicated. In other words, the normal perception of life and the world held by people is still rooted in a cultural background, and I won’t dispute this claim, of a metahistorical character.

    But take a step in an “enlightened”, modern EU state, perhaps Netherlands, Germany or Sweden. A person like yourself will immediately find yourself to be alien, because your notion of normal all of a sudden becomes completely extreme according to the prevailing standards of society. The notion of totalitarianism is not to make everything in life political, but rather the other way around, to turn that which has its origins in political ideology, into something most people take to be normal, even self evident. This is why the majority of people nowadays take for granted the moral stances, beliefs, and token opinions once held by radical minority, namely those stemming from the neo-pagan circle of “Enlightenment”, especially when it comes to the notion of a linear technical progress espoused by history. It is precisely on this grounds that they reject everything from traditional culture as a carry over from those backwards, “medieval” times which modern technological bourgeois society has thankfully, to them, discarded or in the process of doing so. In this situation, how can you speak of normalcy in the way you put it?

    Therefore to be normal, in the sense of being true to your human character, would necessitate one to adopt a radicalism at the cost of freedom, and even life.

    This is by far not a unique example of history demonstrating to us that this is to be the case. What was so “normal” about the Christians in the Roman Empire?

    • Malić says:

      The fool denies, the man of culture debates.

      Yet noble man neither denies nor debate,

      For Tao that would not be present even in erotic manga,

      how could that be the true Tao?

      The man who affirms this truth,

      This is the man who doesn’t ask for hyperlinks;

      In his ignorance, he is wise, like babe suckling on mother’s breast;

      Googling nothing

      • Han Fei says:

        Oh how you tickle my precious sinaboo heart (and possibly other organs too). But I can assure you Branco, I would love nothing more than to nod my head and aye to everything you said, but were it not for the sake of other readers who might be entertaining similar questions and looking to the comments section for resolution. Therefore you should consider the words I offer in critique hardly attempts at refutation.

        Regarding this idea of normalcy, which I consider to be quite substantial, we all seem to agree on its presence, but yet have a different understanding of what it is and under what situation does it apply. Extreme ideas, especially what we consider here, of a right wing variety, have a tendency to grasp a person’s mind whenever they feel that their surroundings are becoming increasingly, insufferably abnormal. Therefore they tend to seek extreme solutions to their predicament. For example Mussolini felt it a necessity to conduct “minor victorious wars”every now and then for sport, just to prevent the classic Italian “la bona viva” attitude from setting in again, in opposition to which his regime emerged in the first place. The consequence of this thinking, was of course the adoption of ideological policy that was completely incompatible with human nature out which we derive this notion of “normalcy” in the first place.

        Now regarding Mrs. Ulrike Meinhof, is the case not similar? How would you feel knowing that the institutions, power structures and even figures of the Third Reich, in spite of the total ruination of the past out of which Germany had to reconstruct itself, still remained in place? Sure, the esoteric weirdos largely found their place under the earth (if you believe some people, quite literally), but the local gauleiter and former camp director was still there, it’s just that he was now a respected leader of business or a top political figure. I can perfectly understand this lady’s emotions, even if I don’t approve of her actions.

        So in other words we encounter a problem of how seeking the return of a perceived normal state of society imperils an even further drive from it. Would this be a clearer way of putting forward the question I raised without seeming too argumentative?

        • Malić says:

          I wasn’t denigrating your comment, just got overwhelmed by the idea of erotic manga Tao. Than the poetry just poured …

          As I try to keep these podcasts/videos under 30 minutse, I leave some stuff on the cutting floor and one of those things was precisely the one you point out: the Nazi legacy in Germany that overwhelmed the post War generation. Meinhof, as far as I recall, was definitely one of those people who were fighting to liberate themselves from it and it is partly the cause that draw them to violence and insanity. I would agree on that wholeheartedly.

  2. Don Segundo Sombra says:

    This is very interesting, but maybe the point you raised at the end needs further development, some (e.g sophisticated leftists) will precisely claim that “common sense” is “colonised” (I´m thinking in gramscianism). Is there any way out from the maze of idealism?

    • Malić says:

      For run of the mill Left culture critics, some of whom are pretty good at what they do and some of whom are privately as decent people as one can get, this poor lunatic is just themselves if they were pushed to draw practical consequences from their theoretical outlook. They don’t know this, but the idea of which you’re speaking of is precisely what Meinhof enacted in practice: she decolonized her common sense and in the process dissolved it. The way out is rejection and marginalization of people of this kind of mindset, which happens spontaneously in balanced society, i.e. society which is minimally free from perpetual crisis.

  3. Mihai says:

    When talking about the normal man I cannot help but think of a conversation from the Adolescent by Dostoevsky that I really liked. The character Versilov says something like (paraphrasing): “I think that the normal person is something so simple, that we have been passing him by without noticing him for the past two thousand years”.
    When reading the Gospels, for example, there seems to be support to Dostoevsky’s idea, since the main “characters” there are the type people who would never make any historian’s account, in any time.

    However we must be careful, since “normalcy” is something indeed very tricky to understand and is very far from obvious, by today’s standards especially. Hence its elusiveness.
    If someone would ask me, the only answer I could give is to point to our iconography, but then the conversation would experience an immediate short-circuit. This is because our minds have been conditioned and shaped- for the last 1-2 hundred years (depending on location)- by the petty-bourgeois idea of normalcy- that is the complacent, “well-adjusted” individual whose main trait is banality. Thus, what the above mentioned iconography would seem in this case to imply for this mentality is something completely abnormal to the extreme.
    Here we also must be very careful, lest we make the same mistake of people like Julius Evola, who lump together under the petty-bourgeois banner things that are very nuanced and have their roots in times and concepts that have nothing to do with modern bourgeoisie. Such is the family, for instance. Though the family can be- and has certainly been- co-opted in that “well-adjusted” banal lifestyle mentioned above, its origin and reason to be far transcends it.

    So we cannot even begin talking about normalcy, without discussing proper anthropology. And all of this takes way too much knowledge and time and hence the activists and agitators of all sorts will have a winning hand each time with their slogans and propaganda.

    I think Branko is right: one obvious trait of the revolutionary is precisely the politicizing of every single aspect of life. In pre-revolutionary Russia, for example, smoking was a badge of honour for most revolutionaries. Smoking has also been used in feminist propaganda as a sign of “independence” and “liberation”.

    I also understand what Han Fei is talking about. Romania, especially, among the older generations still retain plenty of the patriarchal lifestyle and conceptions he mentioned. But working in a multinational corporation (like I do) always gets you closer here to a mentality of the most westernised and “progressive” kind. And sometimes I am quite taken by surprise and dumbstruck when I hear and see things that I instinctively know that don’t belong here and are completely derailed from any sane lifestyle and view of the world…

  4. Cartman says:

    That was well expressed. It’s hard to articulate what common sense is. I call it intuition or instinct but by its nature it can’t be embedded in a system without doing violence to the living quality of it. Probably why Socrates never wrote down his words. I’ve been listening to Jordan Peterson a bit recently and he is quite refreshing in the context of academic leftism with its mutilations of language and common sense. He’s not saying anything original but the culture is so degraded he is being latched onto like a lifeboat especially by young men. I think he’s a good influence overall , better than the alt-right or the old left of academia.

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