Monday, January 23, 2012

Zombie Or Free Thinker?

Zombies are everywhere. Not in a George A. Romero sort of Living Dead, I'm going to eat you sort of way, but if you ever watch a (Night, Dawn, or Day) of the Dead, you'll see the same shiftless gait and lack of higher brain function in would be political activists. They even, in a metaphorical sense, seek to consume you, if not so literally, their aim is to "infect" others, thus increasing their numbers to the point that even a shit load of guns does you no good.

How can you spot these people? They might be your friends, your family, even your dog! Well fortunately for us the Political Zombie makes himself known. They want you to join them after all. Pick a socially divisive topic, doesn't matter what, say how Obama is doing as a president. One of three things will happen 1). he/she will shrug and give a response like "meh". 2). He/she will go on a rant, about either he hasn't done enough or will fall all over themselves to attempt verbal fallacio, do not expect many actual facts here, but undoubtedly some great talking points. 3). They go into a rant about how he and his cronies are corrupt and not only selling us down the river, but expecting us all to smile while he does it. Here you should expect a few good talking points perhaps a few well documented facts (that have become talking points)

While one most certainly has more independent thought than the other these are typical responses we expect and sadly they are the responses of Zombies. There is a fourth far rarer response and that is of the educated individual who seeks to broaden horizons. They will respond: I support/oppose [insert issue here] because [insert reason here], and will follow up with well reasoned arguments for their position. This it the oh so rare Free Thinker that *most* of the Left's Zombies claim to be. 

To say the FT's of society can not have passion is to do them a disservice. They can get very passionate, but again they have firm reasoning on their side when they do. The FT does not like dramatic displays, but doesn't mind when proven *dramatically* right. But where the FT really rises above the Zombie is the ability to admit when He/She is wrong. How many times did you hear "hey hey LBJ, sorry for calling you a baby killer. We really don't agree with this whole 'Vietnam' thing, is it really worth fighting for, could we maybe find some other way to resist communism?" actually if you heard that chanted I would be freaking shocked.

The Tea Party, tends not to chant, but they are not immune to Zombieism.   Because they're so good at spotting I'm sure CNN and MSNBC highlighted (numerous times) all the Zombies they could find in an attempt to paint the larger movement as a largely Zombie movement.  It hurt the general cause of fiscal conservatives (note: key emphasis on fiscal).  But really with all the charges of racism and plain backwardness you'd have thought that there would be reams of evidence on the subject.  There are just a few examples (Birthers are a great example) of people who are as bat shit crazy as they are portrayed to be.

Now let's look at the Anti-war (pick a war) movement, Pro-choice, Occupy Wall Street, etc.  Lots of chanting going on there isn't there.  Lots of talk about what you shouldn't do, and what a nasty person you are if you do.  When it comes to offering new ideas, or solutions to current problems. . . well only OWS has even made an attempt at such, and their answer is simply put to throw down the system.  Ok . . . and replace it with what?  Their ideas on how to "fix" everything are couched and book-ended by fluffy terms that make us all feel happy about it, but if you actually listen to many of the proposals there is either an expectation of something from nothing, or far more horrifying making something into nothing.  All the while we get to see the fruits of a truly progressive society, and what we see is a society most of us want nothing to do with.  Even Leftist senators and representative are starting to get fed up (which is actually quite ironic). 

You can see that Zombies (despite all attempts to state otherwise) tend to gravitate more towards the Left, than the Right.  This is not to say that there are not FT's on the Left.  Nor, is it to suggest that FT's are always morally correct.  Lets face it, if there are puppet masters, they will be the very few FT's, those who enjoy the freedoms they use Zombies to take power away from others.  Even the "meh" crowd has FT's who choose non-involvement as a philosophy over actual apathy.  In the end the FT's will always live better, and in a way freer than Zombies, who are by their very nature chained.

Left or Right, Male or Female, you are an individual.  You can choose to be a Zombie, but unlike George A Romero's Zombies there is actually a cure for Political Zombies.  That cure is to stop what you're doing and really examine what the hell you're advocating.  Some people have actually done so and "come in from the cold", this tends to happen a lot when one has a family (though sadly not always, which sadly spreads the infection to the children).  Being a Free Thinker, is never easy.  Indeed in some cases it can be quite painful to admit the error of your ways.  It also means that you must place upon yourself a constant vigil, to ensure that your thinking, though influenced by others is not controlled by others no matter how charismatic.  The painful part of being an FT is knowing that you must always stand on your own.  Your thoughts and beliefs are and will always belong to you and you alone.  

People always say "Freedom isn't Free", while there's unbelievable amounts of truth to this simplistic saying, they should have added "Or easy"


Anonymous said...

I'm sure you will find lots of zombies on both sides. I'm pretty sure statements like "zombies tend to gravitate towards the left" are the exact opposite of anything resembling free thought.

You're right about the tea party tending not to chant--they tend to get powerful right wing think tanks to do their chanting for them.

Your implication that the correct response to brutal death being rained down upon several southeast asian countries which we now know was started with a false flag and perpetuated almost solely because of nixon's pride is a polite letter to the reigning CIC is nothing short of preposterous.

I believe you need to drop the false left-right dichotomy. There is only one party in America, the party of Profit and Power. Left and Right have for a long time been nothing more than convenient distractions from the wholesale violent exportation of American influence throughout the world, and the exploitation and extraction of wealth domestically. This is quite poetically demonstrated by our 2012 presidential frontrunners Obama and Romney. Both the Tea Party and OWS have, at different points in their existence, been a protest of this fact and therefore have both drawn the ire of the pundit class. The only difference of course being which corporate-propaganda outlet treats which movement with mild condescension or a vitriolic hatred.

The Mad Medic said...

my first troll. . . I'm so proud of myself.

Yes actually Zombies tend to be Leftists. The Sheep Marx referred to. As for "Powerful Right Wing think tanks" there are always think tanks, but actually you will find (again) more Left leaning ones, many funded by George Soros. And when it comes to Conservative arguments, there are rarely a way to make a cogent argument into a chant (hence why the Left does it)

Nixon's pride. . . Did you forget that it was Johnson who started the war, and Nixon who actually fought it?

I also find it interesting that you tell me to drop the Left v. Right, yet vociferously attack the Right and boisterously defend the Left. This is pure Zombieishness.

To suggest that the TEA party and OWS sprang up because of the same reasons is disingenuous and smacks of intellectual cowardice. The Tea Party sprang up because people (average citizens) were terrified at the amount of debt incurred and the fact that monstrous bills were being pushed through both the house and Senate which, even with a super majority the President had issues passing (that in and of itself should tell you something).

OWS sprang up because recent college graduates, who, normally would have a job pro forma, are now unable to find the high paying jobs that were the unspoken promise of the College Degree. Never-mind that a lot of the degrees gotten were in things that have no practical application. They discovered that it kinda sucks to work yourself out of debt when no one takes your diploma seriously. They wanted a "bail out" too, and figured if the banks could get one students should get one. The protestors forgot that under bush plans the banks had to pay the money back. Under Obama the Car companies had a clean slate and the holders of their debt got screwed in the process. Essentially you are demanding that contract law, which is the basis of our currency, be null and void which would really cause the economy to go to shit.

So there you go the Tea Party was formed demanding that the elected officials actually do their Job. OWS was formed to make sure Rich people gave them jobs (and not the really hard ones either)

Unknown said...

B, I don't think Anonymous is a troll. A troll is intentionally boorish and full of personal insults. Anonymous is someone whose opinions differ from yours. Keep your mind open, my friend. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Mad Medic,

Thank you for removing your previous condescending remark, and engaging me! I'm no stranger to being called a troll but I hope you will listen to the wise words of Ms Lang.

Re: "More think tanks on the left" please see this:
Recently a study came out confirming conservative think-tank brookings institute as the most influential in washington.

The tea party sprung up because of average citizens as you say, in addition to a whole lot of money from the Koch brothers.

Your analysis of OWS is blatantly untrue. OWS was started as a protest of, among other things, massive corporate influence over our leaders in washington, exemplified by such things as TARP in combination with the continued failure of the obama administration to prosecute for financial fraud, the deep involvement of campaign money in politics, etc. The "I am the 99%" campaign was certainly spun to give the idea that they were looking for handouts when, actually, it was about the deep extralegal injustices we see in our economy.

The tea party has expressed outrage over the bailouts, although of course they come at it from a different philosophical angle. I know neither side sees it this way (esp. not TP) but from where I stand they have more in common than they realize. Obama's actions are understandable--he is wall street's golden boy, as the company he keeps (rife with financial services industry execs) proves. I assure you Obama is not popular with the OWS crowd. The vast majority of OWS is employed. I am not advocating the elimination of contract law--quite the opposite.

Yes I am aware that nixon did not start the vietnam war, that's why I said "perpetuate", i.e., continued to fight when it would have been more sensible to stop.

It is the institutionalized left and right which I object to. For example the modern democratic party as all but sold it's soul to the military-financial-industrial complex while the republican party contains nary a trace of its stated small-government ideals. If you look at the big picture, you'll see that nothing gets done that doesn't have the almost unanimous support of the industrial class, while leaving the populace to squabble over issues like gay marriage and abortion.

I wouldn't see myself as defending the (institutional) left and in fact see a lot of good ideas in classical conservativism (as opposed to neoconservativism).

"Yes actually zombies tend to be leftists".
I think a cursory examination of history will show that people from both "sides" have proven themselves a wonderful substrate for manipulation, while the rulers (again, on both sides) seem to have no qualms about exploiting this. F.E. Nixon's Southern Strategy, the beatification of Reagan following his death, from the right. The Obama brand would be a fantastic example from the left.

The Mad Medic said...

To All I say "negative Ghost Rider, the Pattern is full"

First, "most influential" is not the same as Most. When you hold up one (repeat Uno for our Spanish speaking friends) really powerful conservative think tank against say Media-Maters (though not strictly a think tank offers the same function) and a whole host of others (to many really to name) you begin to see that Left leaning "think Tanks" vastly out stretch the COnservative ones. One might wonder why this is until one looks at actual voting history and sees that Democrats typically trend in the upper most, and lower most income blocks. The "Southern Poverty Law Center" for example is supported both by the poor and the "great society" Liberals at the top. That what they put out is drivel is beside the point.

Yes there was funding involved in the Tea Party, because unlike OWS (whose first act was to break the law regarding vagrancy) they actually filled out permits to be at the places that they held rallies. Further, once the message spread to the middle class it saw broad support from a lot of people who never protested before. Contrast that with OWS which is full of the people who are always protesting. I wouldn't be surprised if you saw the same faces at the G20 protests. When it became clear that material support was required, and that people were treading on the "good will" of the ner do wells, OWS got downright nasty. That there are thefts rapes and unsanitary conditions shows you exactly the society they would create.

Also you're ideas on Vietnam are laughable. Johnson's search and destroy missions were sheer lunacy. Body counts should never have been the focus. Also his refusal to cut the Ho Chi Mihn trail is just plain inexcusable. Now, throw in the fact the the VC were just as bad if not worse than most of the horror stories, is of no consequence I suppose. That the war was largely a defensive war is also something that escapes notice. Should we have been there? Perhaps perhaps not, but rather than phrase your statement in such a way you frame it in the usual zombieish mantra "bombing innocent children" or some such

And what's with you defense of the Left? You're attacks on the Right? I thought you said there is no left or right. Hmmmmm?

In the simplest terms, Conservatives are Individualists that believe in improving the Collective.

Liberals are Collectivists who believe in improving the Individual.

Now while I'll admit (i said so in my post) that there are Zombies on both sides, you're more likely to find an FT among the individualists than the collectivists.

Constitutional Insurgent said...

Good piece, Doc. Well reasoned and illustrative of zombies on both sides of the political spectrum.

I think similar analysis can be done with the zombie illustration, on specific subsets or issues that fall on various points on the scale as well.

Most of it can likely be chalked up to perception bias leading to confirmation bias.

Argent said...

Zombies is a good way to put it. It's like a mix of the sheep effect and disconnection to reality. Probably we all have a bit of zombie in us.

Left more than right? I'm not sure if i would back that up or deny it. No it's not a call I could make at this point. Too many either way really.

The Mad Medic said...

The reason Zombies tend to congregate on the Left is actually the main way they sell their points. If you sit down and talk with a Liberal you tend to find out that most of their positions are based on feelings. Feelings need not be rational.

Further chanting mindless things: My body, My choice. Hey Hey LBJ how many kids you kill today. Etc. Is a lot easier than chanting "I am not in favor of big government because I believe it will curtail my liberties."

Yes Conservative may froth with rage on the subject of Abortion. That is one area that is all feeling. But I invite you to go to a conservative Rally (because to my knowledge the Tea Party was really the only protest in recent years) and ask them clear characterization of their beliefs on issues, ask them why they believe that et al. Now do the same at a liberal Protest. I would say OWS but that's long since devolved into an anarchist colony. Next time the G-20 is in town. Ask them what their mad about, why, and what, in their view should the policies be set to to rectify this situation. Chances are that very quickly it'll go into lofty ideals with no basis in reality. Hence- Zombie.