An Empty Mind — Is That What You Want?

I started this morning with a link to this post. In it, I see that my post, “Where Is He Wrong?” is linked. Why? According to the title, “Right-wingers mistake humorous Audi ad for Obama policy; embarrassment should follow.” It’s about a link to here, that I got from here, concerning Federal policy with regard to “environmental justice,” and it was one of seventeen distinct links in my post above concerning the sorry state of our current society, caused largely by government encroachment into private lives.

So what does the author say? Nothing, of course. Like everything else in the world babbling from the mouths of “thought leaders,” it says nothing, or it says lies. This is exactly what Greg’s book deals with, and one could hardly ask for a better example. Words are thrown out there, declarations are made, conclusions are implied, but no facts.

I could write a whole essay just on the title. “Right-wingers”…moi? No right-winger here, just a guy looking to live his own life. Maybe that’s “right-wing” compared to the commie-libs who want to live everyone else’s life, but I think that just makes me a person.

“Mistake”? What mistake? The link was to a site which I believe was the source of this story, but it wasn’t the story itself. The story is in a pdf document, put out by the government. No mistake — the document exists and it says what the source says it says.

“Humorous Audi ad”? The story, nor the pdf document, is about the Audi ad; it’s about government policy and it’s a direct cite of government policy.

Get it? Even in the title, words are bandied about as if they create reality, rather than reflecting reality. Here we have another “profound thinker,” who will tell you what to think, the facts be damned. Check out some of this “support” in the essay…

“…dull, run-of-the-mill document out of the Department of Homeland Security.” See, there’s nothing there, so move along folks. It’s just a “dull, run-of-the-mill document.” Well, what does that mean? How many people — how many millions of dollars — were involved in this? How many regulators need to follow up on it? How much will be sucked out of the economy in the name of “environmental justice for minorities?” The author will tell you; it’s just “dull, run-of-the-mill.” There’s nothing for you to think about.

“In contrast, environmental justice is, by now, a rather well-established movement…” This is covered extensively in Greg’s book. It’s “well-established,” so once again, there’s nothing for you to think about.

“…to marry civil rights laws and anti-pollution laws to prevent poor neighborhoods from being unfairly burdened by pollution, in a drive to clean up pollution for the benefit of all.” There it is — “benefit for all.” Not benefit for you, since you have to pay for all this waste, but somehow a “benefit for all.” Who’s “the public” — everyone but you, of course.

“It’s an old enough concept that it goes by its initials…” Once again, an “old concept,” so there’s nothing for you to think about.

“Could a serious-minded American citizen disagree with anything in those two definitions?” Get the “argument”? If you’re a “serious-minded American, then you couldn’t possibly disagree…nothing to think about.

Naturally no screed of anti-thought like this would be complete without some good shots of hypocrisy. “More than a dozen blogs, operated by at least a dozen bloggers — all of whom conserved a great deal of energy by failing to use any of their gray matter neurons before parroting a hoax.”

“Failing to us any of their gray matter neurons”? Too funny. What hoax? The relevant document exists. This author’s entire post is a plea for you to not use your gray matter, yet look at the charge here.

“My experience is that most of those blogs are terrified that someone will leave an opposing opinion in comments…” Ha…Greg and I have been practically begging for comments. Not only are comments allowed in each and every post, there’s even a link at the top for disagreements!

Alright, ’nuff said. I thought I was going to have to offer a retraction because I thought maybe I was snookered by an actual hoax. And of course, since I care about nothing but the facts, that’s what I would’ve done. But now I see it’s just more of the same, which is nothing. It’s just words bandied about, with no care whatsoever about the truth of the matter…just more implied accusations and more fallacies, all with the express purpose that you don’t think. That way you might not notice what’s happening to you.

That is the purpose of this site. This is the one place where you must think, which is to say that you must live. Your choice — death by nitwits like this guy, or the life of Splendor that you dreamt of as a child.

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  • Yes, you got hoaxed. Take your advice, and think for just a minute: Can you identify any “environmental policy” that is offensive to anyone, in the memo you complain about? No one has, yet.

    Worse, you dismiss the concept of environmental justice as if you think it’s fine to pour toxics into minority neighborhoods. Is that really your position? Have you given the topic the thought it deserves, or are you just snookered by the hoax?

  • “Yes, you got hoaxed.”

    Nonsense. All I care about is that the document exists. And it exists.

    “Can you identify any ‘environmental policy’ that is offensive to anyone, in the memo you complain about?”

    According to you, the document is okay precisely BECAUSE it does nothing. That is, because it’s a complete waste, accomplishing nothing but yapping.

    I’m sure you haven’t read Greg’s book yet, but this place is about moving forward. You’re defending either nothing, or something bad. That’s all.

    “Worse, you dismiss the concept of environmental justice as if you think it’s fine to pour toxics into minority neighborhoods.”

    As if? You mean as if the world were as you imagine it? Sorry bud, it isn’t. I don’t think it’s fine to pour toxics anywhere that other people might get injured.

    The world, including me, is as it is, not as you bullshit that it is.

    “Is that really your position?”

    How could MY position be what YOU make up in YOUR mind?

    “Have you given the topic the thought it deserves, or are you just snookered by the hoax?”

    On this topic, I’ve only come across one hoax so far. Nice to meet you, Ed.

  • If this trivial sub-sub-topic happens to interest anyone, please be aware that it has continued, at least for a bit, over at Mr. Darrell’s place…

    In deference to Greg–because he’s right–I’m trying to keep stuff that’s “negative on the number line” to a minimum here. Mr. Darrell appears to be a “thoughtful” man of precisely the sort Greg describes in “Man Alive!” Hopefully there’ll be something on the positive side of the number line that we can bring here.

  • “Yes, you got hoaxed.”

    Nonsense. All I care about is that the document exists. And it exists.

    I hadn’t paid enough heed to that before: So you don’t care about accuracy, only whether someone made a statement somewhere.

    Another way philosophy differs from science these days: Accuracy, and finding the facts and the truth, are valued in science.

  • I like cute, Ed, and that was cute.

    [This conversation took place at Ed’s site.] I don’t know how many ways I can explain it—my link (one of 17 similar) was intended to point out the document and I did it through the site which led me to it. I’ve already conceded at least twice that it likely would’ve been wiser to link the document directly.

    You’ve spent ALL your time evading the focal point, which I’ve repeated time and time again. The document was evil. It was either intended to do absolutely nothing as you suggest, in which case it’s just an evil waste of tremendous resources. Or, it’s intended to direct action, in which case it’s evil in virtue of the nature of that action.

    Yet all you keep yapping about is that some site presented a Super Bowl ad as if it were reality. Frankly, I don’t think that’s even right and I don’t really care. The “accuracy” I care about is the nature of the document in question, and that document is both real and evil. Your appeal, the rare moments when you even make one, is to emotion, as if anyone who recognizes the document as evil must be in favor of dumping toxics in poor neighborhoods.

    Virtually everyone reading this site knows this is standard fare for commie-libs. If you don’t believe in the unbelievable sinkhole that is our educational system, then you must hate kids. If you recognize the horrendous damage of the Drug War, then you must be in favor of junkies breaking into houses. If you don’t believe in turning this nation into a bankrupt hell-hole, then you must want old people to suffer and you must be against having police and the military. These are all classic fallacies intended to shut down sensible thinking and instead appeal to emotion.

    IOW everything is exactly as I have stated and implied. Greg is precisely right about “thought leaders” and that their goal is to have other people NOT think. That is, they WANT people to have an “empty mind” and fail to see the facts right before their eyes.

    I did not fall for any hoax, the document exists, my points in the post were valid, and you have been an extraordinary example of everything Greg and I charge. So thanks for that, anyway. Now go have a pleasant day preaching to those empty minds who enjoy railing against businesses on their broadband internet connections that they couldn’t have produced in a million years.

    • Mike Arst

      It is impossible to have an actual discussion with people for whom the straw-man/J’Accuse style of argument is _the_ way to score the required points — “as if you think it’s fine to pour toxics” (and so forth) being a typical enough example. Your argument is invalid; why, look — you are precisely the bad person whom I’ve just invented; dismissed! It’s been this way since the first Neanderthal crawled out of the cave, powered up his laptop, and began posting. It’s tedious and childish and stupid and sometimes even infuriating, and I’m damned if I have ever been able to figure out how to get past it.

  • Here’s the really sick part, Mike. Those “arguments” lead to exactly what they pretend to fight against. People die BECAUSE of the FDA. Old people suffer BECAUSE they bankrupted the country with their folly “to help old people.” Children’s minds turn to mush BECAUSE they “fight for the children.”

    It would be entirely comical if it weren’t so tragic.

    • Mike Arst

      Richard Mitchell is on my mind a lot these days, as I read through Gift of Fire (and plan to re-read the rest). I was going to say that there’s an epidemic of slipshod thinking…but no, it’s endemic, not epidemic — chronic, not acute. “America is back.” “Our best days are ahead of us.” “Corporations aren’t people” — the latest noble sentiment; some of the local 99% [cough] were on a freeway overpass today, displaying an American flag and waving a sign reading “Corporations aren’t people”; if that doesn’t get enough traction, maybe they could try “Kulaks aren’t people.” If you don’t agree to pour yet more money down the education-hole, you don’t care about The Children. If you aren’t against gay marriage, you’re against the family and the sanctity of marriage. If you’re against gay marriage, then you’re heartless and hateful and bigoted and possibly a Nazi. There are more of these If you [think something I don’t like], then [something bad about you] neuroses than Carter’s has Little Liver Pills [you have to be about my age for that to mean anything]. Some days the web seems to me like little more than an endless episode of Kristallnacht for Dummies.