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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 12:12 am
by iambiguous
Yaa Gyasi

The need to call this thing “good” and this thing “bad,” this thing “white” and this thing “black,” was an impulse that Effia did not understand. In her village, everything was everything. Everything bore the weight of everything else.

How about in your village?

You cannot stick a knife in a goat and then say, "now I will remove my knife slowly - so let things be easy and clean; let there be no mess." There will always be blood.

Same with pigs too. And people.

This is the problem of history. We cannot know that which we were not there to see and hear and experience for ourselves. We must rely upon the words of others.

The winners in particular.

There should be no room in your life for regret. If in the moment of doing you felt clarity, you felt certainty, then why feel regret later?

Among other things, huh?

The white man's god is just like the white man. He thinks he is the only god, just like the white man thinks he is the only man. But the only reason he is god instead of Nyame or Chukwu or whoever is because we let him be.

Yeah, sort of.

They would just trade one type of shackles for another, trade physical ones that wrapped around wrists and ankles for the invisible ones that wrapped around the mind.

Of course even when you're free they do that.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 2:54 pm
by iambiguous
Henri Barbusse

I believe that around us there is only one word on all sides, one immense word which reveals our solitude and extinguishes our radiance: Nothing!

I left out his hopeful conclusion.

It is not a woman I want - it is all women.

All women. Right.

We have the divinity of our great misery. And our solitude, with its toilsome ideas, tears and laughter, is fatally divine.

Divinity. Right.

People are machines of forgetfulness.

But we forgot why.

At the touch of mankind, things wear away with heartbreaking slowness.

Or with wretched rapidity.

Two armies that fight each other is like one large army that commits suicide.

Tell that to the winners.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:48 pm
by iambiguous
Philosophy Tweets

"Why are philosophers intent on forcing others to believe things? Is that a nice way to behave towards someone?” Robert Nozick

On the other hand, it's only "up in the clouds".

"You can't satisfy everybody; especially if there are those who will be dissatisfied unless not everybody is satisfied.” Robert Nozick

He means the Commies of course.

"Every deep thinker is more afraid of being understood than of being misunderstood." Friedrich Nietzsche

He means me of course. If only in another lifetime.

“Happy is the man who has learned the causes of things.” Virgil

So, what's the cause of this?

“Time carries all things, even our wits, away.” Virgil

Okay, but to where?

"Freedom in Capitalist society remains about the same as it was in ancient Greek republics: freedom for the slave owners." Vladimir Lenin

Chattel slaves and wage slaves: let's finally distinguish them once and for all.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 9:48 pm
by iambiguous
Ben Jonson

To speak and to speak well are two things. A fool may talk, but a wise man speaks.

Let's decide who gets to decide that here.

There is no greater hell than to be a prisoner of fear.

What, in this world?

You learn nothing about someone by the way they win the fight, you learn everything about the way they lose and keep coming back.

The Stooges! Only here it's that they keep coming back at all.

Memory, of all the powers of the mind, is the most delicate and frail.

Ask me about the train trestle.

He who is taught only by himself has a fool for a master.

Among others, cue the autodidactic Kids here.

Ambition, like a torrent, never looks back.

After all, imagine the embarrassment.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 5:35 pm
by iambiguous
Emile Zola

If you shut up truth and bury it under the ground, it will but grow, and gather to itself such explosive power that the day it bursts through it will blow up everything in its way.


If you ask me what I came into this life to do, I will tell you: I came to live out loud.

You know, if they let you.

Civilization will not attain to its perfection until the last stone from the last church falls on the last priest.

Let's get started. Again.

Man's highest duty is to protect animals from cruelty.

Well, sure, it's certainly in the top 10.

Truth is on the march, and nothing will stop it.

On the other hand, to date, almost everything already has.

Governments are suspicious of literature because it is a force that eludes them.

Right, like most governments think of it at all.
Yo, Trump!

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 7:49 pm
by iambiguous
Philosophy Tweets

"Let us be terrible in order to prevent the people from being terrible themselves!” Georges Danton

How's that working out for you?

"Revolutionary constituencies always involve a tacit alliance between the least alienated and the most oppressed." David Graeber

Next up: reactionary constituencies.

“Knowledge is no guarantee of good behavior, but ignorance is a virtual guarantee of bad behavior.” Martha C. Nussbaum

Yo, Kids!

“Peoples do not judge in the same way as courts of law; they do not hand down sentences, they throw thunderbolts; they do not condemn kings, they drop them back into the void; and this justice is worth just as much as that of the courts.” Maximilien Robespierre

My guess: For better or for worse.

“When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty.” George Bernard Shaw

Or God's will.

“There are crimes of passion and crimes of logic. The boundary between them is not clearly defined.” Albert Camus

Your particular context or mine?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 9:59 pm
by iambiguous
Michael C. Hall

There are no secrets in life; just hidden truths that lie beneath the surface.

Secrets, he means.

It's interesting to play a role where you don't really have to preoccupy yourself with any need to convince yourself that you're not acting.

My guess: there's a "real life" version of that too.

Honestly, I think some of my family members of a certain generation were more skittish about me playing a gay character on Six Feet Under than watching me play a killer.

Imagine then if Dexter was gay.

I don't think closeted homosexual morticians have the market cornered on self-loathing or sense of shame.

How about closeted homosexual morticians who are serial killers?

Dexter's a unique killer in that his father saw his dark impulses, shined a light on them, and told Dexter that he saw them, he accepted them, that Dexter is good and that he is worthy of love. And I think that's what enables him to focus his energies in this unique way.

Also, he kills only the really, really, really bad people.
People that you might kill yourself, right?

People feel like they know me from the work I have done, but it's not me.

That can spoil things for some.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2020 5:16 pm
by iambiguous
E. O. Wilson

A lifetime can be spent in a Magellanic voyage around the trunk of a single tree.

I'll take his word for it myself.

Moreover, we look in vain to philosophy for the answer to the great riddle. Despite its noble purpose and history, pure philosophy long ago abandoned the foundational questions about human existence. The question itself is a reputation killer. It has become a Gorgon for philosophers, upon whose visage even the best thinkers fear to gaze. They have good reason for their aversion. Most of the history of philosophy consists of failed models of the mind. The field of discourse is strewn with the wreckage of theories of consciousness. After the decline of logical positivism in the middle of the twentieth century, and the attempt of this movement to blend science and logic into a closed system, professional philosophers dispersed in an intellectual diaspora. They emigrated into the more tractable disciplines not yet colonized by science – intellectual history, semantics, logic, foundational mathematics, ethics, theology, and, most lucratively, problems of personal life adjustment.

See, I told you. Well, if this is what I did tell you.

The competition between the two forces can be succinctly expressed as follows: Within groups selfish individuals beat altruistic individuals, but groups of altruists beat groups of selfish individuals. Or, risking oversimplification, individual selection promoted sin, while group selection promoted virtue.

Next up: phoneutria tells us if this is really true.

The most successful scientist thinks like a poet—wide-ranging, sometimes fantastical—and works like a bookkeeper. It is the latter role that the world sees.

Next up: the least successful philosopher.

Here indeed is a major difference between people and ants: where we send our young men to war, ants send their old ladies. No moral lesson there, unless you are looking for a less expensive form of elder care.

Okay, but suppose it was a moral lesson?

For the entire course of evolution leading from our primitive mammalian forebears of a hundred million years ago to the single lineage that threaded its way to become the first Homo sapiens, the total number of individuals it required might have been one hundred billion. Unknowingly, they all lived and died for us.

Yo forebears, thanks!
[for nothing]

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2020 6:52 pm
by iambiguous
sad socrates

I practice social annihilation.

Let's join him!

A One Step Guide to Wasting Time:
1. Start Thinking

Hmm, let's think about that...

There is nothing to gain from tomorrow, and a lot to lose today.

That can't be good.

Philosophers claim everything is real so you don’t panic.

Next up: Buddhists claim nothing is real so you don't panic.

Joy is the acceptable form of ignorance.

Not only that but right around the corner from it is bliss.

Meet every disaster as it meets you—with complete disregard.

My guess: that can be easier said than done.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Sep 17, 2020 9:45 pm
by iambiguous
Louis-Ferdinand Celine

Even diseases have lost their prestige, there aren't so many of them left. Think it over... no more syphilis, no more clap, no more typhoid... antibiotics have taken half the tragedy out of medicine.

Diseases: they're back!

A man should be resigned to knowing himself a little better each day if he hasn't got the guts to put an end to his sniveling once and for all.

How about this: no guts, no glory. You know, if that's even applicable here.

If you aren't rich you should always look useful.

Or start a revolution.

People don't deserve the restraint we show by not going into delirium in front of them.

Yes, here, that includes virtually.

Poor people never, or hardly ever, ask for an explanation of all they have to put up with. They hate one another, and content themselves with that.

Not only that but some of the assholes will vote for those who actually create what they have to put up with.
Hint, hint.

Reason died in 1914, November 1914 ... after that everybody began to rave.

My guess: We still are.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 5:42 pm
by iambiguous
Helen Macdonald

When you are broken, you run. But you don't always run away. Sometimes, helplessly, you run towards.

Being helpless. That'll do it.

It took me a long time to realise how many of our classic books on animals were by gay writers who wrote of their relationships with animals in lieu of human loves of which they could not speak.

Sure, this has that "ring of truth" for me.

'Nature in her green, tranquil woods heals and soothes all affliction,’ wrote John Muir. ‘Earth hath no sorrows that earth cannot heal.’ Now I knew this for what it was: a beguiling but dangerous lie.

Two words:
1[ Natural
2] Disasters
The woods on the West Coast for example.

Like a good academic, I thought books were for answers.

On the other hand, what's the question?

It happens to everyone. But you feel it alone. Shocking loss isn’t to be shared, no matter how hard you try.

Look, I won't share mine if you don't share yours.

The kind of madness I had was different. It was quiet, and very, very dangerous. It was a madness designed to keep me sane.

Of course that didn't work for me.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 8:32 pm
by iambiguous
Elena Epaneshnik

You can only feel truly divine when you know that you're someone else's personal demon.

Yo, Curly!

Looks like Kanye's brain has once again taken a sabbatical.

On the other hand, he insisted, black lives matter.

The least frequently asked question in 2020: "Where are you going?"
The most frequently asked question in 2020: "Are we there yet?"

For some of us, of course, not unlike all the other years.

Heard a theory that every time you fall asleep you die. So, if it's true, that must mean that God doesn't want me, Satan doesn't want me, either, and then I wake up, with lots of WTF, not knowing what I've done in my life to end up so bad.

Not the theory you heard, is it?

Over the years, I've received a bunch of idiotic insults on Twitter. However, there was—and still is—only one serious threat, and it comes from Twitter itself. It says, "No one has engaged with your tweet...YET.

So, is this a real thing?

I wish there was a dating app for the demons trapped inside of us.

Me, I'm for keeping it all to myself.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 2020 10:08 pm
by iambiguous
Billy Wilder

You're as good as the best thing you've ever done.

Well, after you run it by Curly, anyway.

The only pictures worth making are the ones that are playing with fire.

Yo, Hollywood!

The best director is the one you don't see.

Unless, of course, you're Alfred Hitchcock.

Make subtlety obvious.

Or, sure, here, sneak it in.

Money makes even bastards legitimate.

Let's introduce money here and see what happens.

The Austrians are brilliant people. They made the world believe that Hitler was a German and Beethoven an Austrian.

Among other things, is it important to know this?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 6:45 pm
by iambiguous
Georg Buchner

The breath of an aristocrat is the death rattle of freedom.

How about we snuff it? Then deal with the breath of a revolutionary.

Government must be a transparent garment which tightly clings to the people's body.

If only on paper.

We are always on stage, even when we are stabbed in earnest at the end.

The play must go on. On or off the stage.

You women could make someone fall in love even with a lie.

Not unlike you men. Depending, of course, on who is keeping score.

That is a long word: forever!

And then the longest word of all to seal the deal: death.

A good man with a good conscience doesn't walk so fast.

A little help with this one, please.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:17 pm
by iambiguous
Werner Twertzog

I have lost weight during the pandemic because I am thinking so much more about the end of civilization.

The next new diet craze!

Humanities professors have a duty to appear wretched, pathetic, and impoverished to prevent others from following in their footsteps.

And we surely have our own rendition of that here.

93% of humanities graduate students will not work as professors, and so it is important that they continue to be trained to do nothing else, I am told.

Well, there's always McDonalds.

Dear Students: In the event of my death, the one of you with the highest current grade will take my place.

Of course: Meritocracy!

Dear America: Whom will you blame now for this obvious demonstration of God’s wrath?

Anyone else here thinking Trump?

Freedom of expression is important for giving your enemies something with which to destroy you.

Yo, Curly!

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 2020 9:53 pm
by iambiguous
Akwaeke Emezi

There is no right thing, Pet replied. There is only the thing that needs to be done.

Our way, for example.

The worst part of embodiment is being unseen.

Indeed, I see, hear, touch, smell and taste that.

We're afraid for you, they said. It's like you're on this thin line between being alive and being dead, like one small shift could send you either direction.

Not only that, but: at any time, in any place, for any reason.

The gods do not care. It is not them, after all, that will pay the cost.

Perhaps, but they are still all you've got if you want to be, among other things, immortal.

If nobody sees you, are you still there?

For some of us, more than ever.

I have lived many lives inside this body. I lived many lives before they put me in this body. I will live many lives when they take me out of it.

And, so, she believed it. And, so, it came to be.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:17 pm
by iambiguous
Yaa Gyasi

Forgiveness, they shouted, all the while committing their wrongs. When he was younger, Yaw wondered why they did not preach that the people should avoid wrongdoing altogether.

My guess: It wouldn't work?

What could be worse than dead? But all around him, the evidence was clear.

BLM? You bet.

Theirs was the kind of life that did not guarantee living.

What kind of life ever does?

The convicts working the mines were almost all like him. Black, once slave, once free, now slave again.

Close enough?

Sonny would tell Marcus about how America used to lock up black men off the sidewalks for labor or how redlining kept banks from investing in black neighborhoods, preventing mortgages or business loans. So was it a wonder that prisons were still full of them? Was it a wonder that the ghetto was the ghetto?

You know, until Biden is in the White House.

You can learn anything when you have to learn it. You could learn how to fly if it meant you would live another day.

Good to know, right?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:16 pm
by iambiguous
Existential Comics

The horror of socialized healthcare is that people have to wait in line to get surgery.
The horror of free market healthcare is that the poor don't get surgery at all, and they die.
Which of these two things you find more horrifying says a lot about you.

Yo, phoneutria!

aspire to have the confidence of people who believe they are going to get into heaven by tricking God on a technicality

I'll tell you my trick if you'll tell me yours.

The year is 2050. Everyone subscribes to their favorite corporation, who provide all the necessities of life. For a premium subscription, they will also entertain you.

He means 2030 of course.

FYI, "pack the court" should be the moderate, centrist position at this point.
The leftist position would be to abolish the system where 9 unelected elders create our laws based on their hermeneutic readings of the sacred text passed down to us from our ancestors.

Substituting in its place the dictatorship of the proletariat.

One of the Supreme Court's main functions is to protect the sacred right that is above all other sacred right in America: property.
What are they protecting it from? Democracy.

"Political economy" let's call it.

Democracy is when an unelected 87 year old dies and now all the laws might change for some reason.

Hey, I don't call it objectivism for nothing. Or, sure, nihilism.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:29 pm
by iambiguous
Isabel Wilkerson

They did what human beings looking for freedom, throughout history, have often done. They left.

They leave here too.

It occurred to me that no matter where I lived, geography could not save me.

Still, it can make some things considerably better.

The measure of a man’s estimate of your strength, he finally told them, is the kind of weapons he feels that he must use in order to hold you fast in a prescribed place.

For the serious philosophers, of course: words.

That's why I preach today. Do not do spite, he said. Spite does not pay. It goes around and misses the object that you aim and comes back and zaps you. And you're the one who pays for it.

He thought: "That depends on how close it comes to revenge."

The price of privilege is the moral duty to act when one sees another person treated unfairly. And the least that a person in the dominant caste can do is not make the pain any worse.

Next up: actual reality.

A caste system is an artificial construction, a fixed and embedded ranking of human value that sets the presumed supremacy of one group against the presumed inferiority of other groups.

For example, all the way to the bank.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 5:03 pm
by iambiguous
Ben Jonson

My thoughts and I were of another world.

Mine too. Would you like me to give you directions?

Calumnies are answered best with silence.

Not counting the Stooges of course.

The dignity of truth is lost with much protesting.

Me, I'll take my chances.

To struggle when hope is banished!
To live when life's salt is gone!
To dwell in a dream that's vanished!
To endure, and go calmly on!

Sometimes in exactly that order.

They, who know no evil, will suspect none.

Don't look at me, of course.

Peace is never more than one thought away.

Right, but neither are all those other things.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 7:40 pm
by iambiguous

I like my women like my haunted houses: have a horrifying backstory & could kill me at any moment.

You know, on Twitter.

Waking up always raises an age-old dilemma: why

Yo, dasein!

A french kiss is when you use tongue. A goth kiss is when you bury their heart beneath the floorboards.

Next up: a goth fuck.

The monster isn’t under your bed or in the woods, it’s you. The monster has always been you.

Anyone here actually doubt that?

What you do at night is between you and the fucking moon.

And, for Fixed Jacob, the fucking stars.

When I was 16 I watched 3,000 people die on live tv

You know, from a distance.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:00 pm
by iambiguous
Gary Oldman

Any actor who tells you that they have become the people they play, unless they’re clearly diagnosed as a schizophrenic, is bullshitting you.

Not counting Sid Vicious of course.

What other people think of me is none of my business.

True. Unless they come after you.

I enjoy playing characters where the silence is loud.

Deafening even.

You choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color.

Well, not counting Nazis. And some of the Kids here.

Wanting to be a good actor is not good enough. You must want to be a great actor. You just have to have that.

So, does that work the same for philosophers?

I like these calm little moments before the storm, it reminds me of Beethoven.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 4:32 pm
by iambiguous

The mysterious path goes inward. It is in us, and not anywhere else, where the eternity of the worlds, the past and the future are found.

See, I told you.

A hero is one who knows how to hang on one minute longer.

Any actual examples of that?

We are more closely connected to the invisible than to the visible.

Any actual examples of that?

Friendship, love, and piety ought to be handled with a sort of mysterious secrecy; they ought to be spoken of only in the rare moments of perfect confidence, to be mutually understood in silence. Many things are too delicate to be thought; many more, to be spoken.

Well, it does sound like it ought to be true.

When you understand how to love one thing, then you also understand how to love everything.

Or, if you prefer, loathe.

Poetry heals the wounds inflicted by reason.

Or at least muddles them.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 6:28 pm
by iambiguous
Jan Mieszkowski

Freedom is
Leibniz: self-rationalization
Kant: self-determination
Hegel: self-transcendence
Sartre: self-delusion
Camus: a joke

I know, I know: Sartre and Camus. But too close to call.

You are born free but
Rousseau: live in chains
Lacan: love in chains
Sartre: die in chains
Camus: chain-smoke

At least we know it involves chains.

It's Mary Shelley's birthday. Celebrate by creating something you can't control and wondering whether it wants to exalt or kill you.

Obviously: dasein.

I usually solve problems by letting them devour me. Kafka

After all, they will eventually.

From the true opponent, a limitless courage flows into you. Kafka

Or not of course.

Life is
Kierkegaard: anxiety
Schopenhauer: despair
Bataille: terror
Benjamin: guilt
Beckett: all that stuff, but really, really funny

Let's all laugh on cue.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:51 pm
by iambiguous
Edward O. Wilson

The predisposition to religious belief is an ineradicable part of human behavior. Mankind has produced 100,000 religions. It is an illusion to think that scientific humanism and learning will dispel religious belief. Men would rather believe than know...

See, I told you. Over and over and over and over again.

The true cause of hatred and violence is faith versus faith, an outward expression of the ancient instinct of tribalism.

See, Satyr told you. Over and over and over and over again.

If there is danger in the human trajectory, it is not so much in the survival of our own species as in the fulfillment of the ultimate irony of organic evolution: that in the instant of achieving self-understanding through the mind of man, life has doomed its most beautiful creations.

That can't be good. Unless of course that can't be true.

The creation myth is a Darwinian device for survival.

Our survival and not theirs, anyway.

We need freedom to roam across land owned by no one but protected by all, whose unchanging horizon is the same that bounded the world of our millennial ancestors.

Sounds like Commie crap, he thought.

The human mind is a product of the Pleistocene age, shaped by wildness that has all but disappeared. If we complete the destruction of nature, we will have succeeded in cutting ourselves off from the source of sanity itself. Hermetically sealed amidst our creations and bereft of those of the Creation, the world then will reflect only the demented image of the mind imprisoned within itself. Can the mind doting on itself and its creations be sane?

Mr. Pleistocene, meet Mr. Trump.