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Notes on Identity Politics

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posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 06:12 PM
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Notes on Identity Politics



There is something fundamentally stupid about those who think with their skin, their sexuality, their gender, or whatever other immutable property they believe groups them, and more, divides them from others. The adherence to this base tribalism is always a process of diminishing returns, and when centred around biological characteristics, it is fertile ground for superstition, hatred, and injustice.

Identity politics...from this one stupidity arises a cascade of countless others.

Foreseeing the rise in identity politics, the always prescient George Orwell wrote in his Notes On Nationalism that “[the] abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself, but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.” For Orwell, a fundamental problem with these “units” is that their existence can be seriously questioned, and in the end, the identity politician is seeking power and prestige for nothing in particular.

This is why it is necessary to point out the obvious when it involves people so far removed from the obvious—any and all groups are composed of individuals and are not themselves individual. How obvious, but how difficult this is to grasp for the collectivist. Maybe the thought-poor mind requires the levelling of particulars into all encompassing general ideas so as to maintain the ease with which to organize its mental furniture—who knows?—yet even the quickest glance at the world proves a different state of affairs. Perhaps their stupidity is a form of deception. Identity Politics is “power-hunger tempered by self-deception”.

Let’s be serious; when members of a supposed group are so distant, so disparate, never meeting each other, and without any connection save for maybe one superficial characteristic, there is no such group. The so-called “LGBT community”, “the white vote”, “Hispanics”, "the black community": these are all words connoting ideas made in abstracto, with reference to personal opinion and prejudice rather than any real connection between any real members. Hence, when they consider their imaginary collectives as a concrete entity, they make the mistake of reification, pretending and acting as if their abstract thoughts have a basis in the world.

When the reification of their fictitious collectives leads them to see a “community”, an “identity”, some affinity or other—even an enemy—among the superficial fever of their abstractions, they can pretend there is a shared “common experience” with a staggering amount of people whom they have never met, and therefor, could never judge or vouch for otherwise. When it is found that someone does not conform with his supposed collective, his membership is revoked, and he is banished as if he was really a member of that group to begin with.

They protest, advocate and show solidarity with people they have never met, against people they have never met. They gather only to superficial and never meaningful similarities and connections. Blinded by tribalism and seduced by the allure of crowds, they know nothing of the other members of their own group save for that they are on the same side. For all they know (or care to know), they could be marching arm-in-arm with a rapist, a child abuser, or someone they would never befriend on any other occasion. And among their make-believe enemies might be a potential friend, lover, comrade, or someone who might save their life, help them in need, uplift their spirits, if they weren’t already placed on the other side of some fantastic and abstract divide.

If you’re wondering why any criticism of today’s identity politics would fit perfectly on the identity politics of yesterday—the politics of caste systems, apartheid, segregation and race nationalism—it is because they are cut from the same blood-soaked cloth. It is no strange wonder that they all adhere to the very same language and hierarchies, evoking tribalism instead of repudiating it. They all rely on the same absurdities in order to assert themselves, and thus when taken too far, lead to the same injustices that convinced them to identity politics in the first place.

“Let justice be done though the heavens fall” reads an old maxim. It was Justice, not Identity Politics, that eroded caste systems, segregation, and apartheid. History will always shine upon those who live up to it. But if individuals are advanced or sacrificed according to group interests, justice will never be able to materialize no matter the state of the sky.

Identity politics is folly because the existence of identities can be seriously questioned, even laughably so. What it amounts to is the expression of the tribal and herd instincts found in people whom have yet to discover who they really are, and likely do not want to find out.

LesMis


edit on 31-10-2017 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)




posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 06:58 PM
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Identity politics is the most overt form of collectivism, all of such by design to appeal to groupthink mindlessness, possible.

It is PRECISELY what the Nazi's did.

The specific groups being combined as ONE into a political ideology is irrelevant in this discussion, this is all about methodology and no what matter groups of Homo sapiens this ideological methodology is applied to the same results can be expected.

And that's exactly what we've been seeing. A twisted hybrid between Nazi & Communists methods from top to bottom.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 07:02 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Sadly it's infected everyone.

Possibly having roots with the kkk and later politicians finding how useful racism is as a political tool created all kinds of groups (in terms of solidifying identity politics in the US).

Religious identity against the sjw's, white power in protest of white shaming....

It takes a real hard center to push away the insanity.
edit on 31-10-2017 by luthier because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 07:16 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Hi LesMis.

Good thread, and you did a good job to steer around using labels.
What part does labeling play in this?
When we view the world dualistically, we seek to differentiate ourselves from "the other".
Our ego stamps labels on others, and we give ourselves opposite, or same labels.
Is this playing a role in the identity politics you wrote about?



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:16 PM
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originally posted by: Nothin
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Hi LesMis.

Good thread, and you did a good job to steer around using labels.
What part does labeling play in this?
When we view the world dualistically, we seek to differentiate ourselves from "the other".
Our ego stamps labels on others, and we give ourselves opposite, or same labels.
Is this playing a role in the identity politics you wrote about?


In a sense, yes.

Labels are important, but more, entirely innocent. Without them conversation would be impossible. On top of that labelling others is a harmless endeavour.

What isn’t harmless is the manner in which we react to labels, or otherwise fear or exalt them. There is a superstition at work here. That’s where all the blood has been spilt. The problem arises somewhere between mistaking the map for the territory long before the territory has been mapped.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:24 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

As a leftist I am very disgusted by my fellow leftists. I believe there needs to be a reformation of the left by removing all regressive elements.

As a conservative leftist, I am sad that many of us over the years turned far left or far right (Many of us are Conservative Democrats aka Reagan Democrats).
edit on 10/31/2017 by starwarsisreal because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:30 PM
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Modern societies have difficulty with allowing people to individuate, to discover themselves and express themselves without fear of social disapproval. The Hit Like Button generation has gotten in to a habit of snap judgement, based on superficial appearances or tags hung by others. We are aware of the presence of many others though we know them not, this is why we fall so easily in to groupthink and identity politics.

People need time alone, truly alone, to find their true selves, their individuality that sets them apart. Something we all have but not all take the time and effort to seek out and persevere at times to attain it. I can't believe billions of people were created so we could all be the same. Surely logic dictates that for survival of the species and to broaden human experience we should all be different, finding new pathways of thought, process and expression. All species seek to fill every possible niche around them - only without chains binding us together are we free to do that.

Part of our survival depends on social contract, the lack of individuals is destroying our ability to live up to that.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:32 PM
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originally posted by: starwarsisreal
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

As a leftist I am very disgusted by my fellow leftists. I believe there needs to be a reformation of the left by removing all regressive elements.

As a conservative leftist, I am sad that many of us over the years turned far left or far right (Many of us are Conservative Democrats aka Reagan Democrats).


To me it’s not about left and right. We need both. Both sides need to be healthy.

I’m not American so I do not share the same political spectrum, but I am technically a liberal. Consequently, these days that also makes me a conservative. Everyone is conservative when it comes to what they believe.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:38 PM
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a reply to: Asktheanimals

That’s something I discovered with travel. That’s where we discover the true currency of humanity: body language, smiles, laughter, all of which is absent in any modern forms of communication. Face to face, body to body, individualism is the true social contract.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 09:38 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

I agree we need both. The problem is both left and right has been hijacked by radicals. I believe in order improve our country, both sides need to remove their radical elements.


edit on 10/31/2017 by starwarsisreal because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 10:28 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Exactly, responding to the other person is the social contract - you are a human being with needs and desires as am I. Today instead of talking to a person we find ourselves addressing entire groups almost by default. Something very fundamental in interpersonal relationships is being lost.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 11:05 PM
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a reply to: starwarsisreal

I honestly don't think as many people you assume are as far on the political scale away from liberalism than you think.
I'm also starting to think that today's internet is making politics far more biased than it really is. It's riddled with far left and right people who are way to out spoken which is rather in your face. The same can be said about throwing labels around.
As wonderful the internet can be, it is starting to become an ideological battle ground.



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 11:13 PM
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a reply to: strongfp

Depends on where you live though. Here in LA, there's a lot of radical leftists here. In my college you have SJWs pulling fire alarms, disrupt classrooms, and disrespect Conservative speakers.
edit on 10/31/2017 by starwarsisreal because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 31 2017 @ 11:49 PM
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Humans naturally identify with people of similar visual cues and appearance.

Preying on this ancient survival response is lower than low. It's politics.



posted on Nov, 1 2017 @ 12:01 PM
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Of course 'they' didnt show up for the occasion.

Wait a week and post the same thread piece but add "SJW" to the title, and then it'll turn into 8 pages of liberal outrage. They instantly trigger when they see SJW, otherwise they manage to hold their cool.




posted on Nov, 1 2017 @ 12:44 PM
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a reply to: Tempter



Humans naturally identify with people of similar visual cues and appearance.

Preying on this ancient survival response is lower than low. It's politics.


People naturally have wisdom teeth. But they don't have much of a function anymore. Of course humans, like all life, evolves.



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