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Virtue-signalling Into Tyranny

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posted on Dec, 28 2017 @ 06:46 PM
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Virtue-signalling Into Tyranny

I love the word “virtue-signalling”, not only because it is accurate and mentally encapsulates the idea, but also because it tends to piss off its worst offenders. Despite its hilarity, and beyond the self-seeking and self-aggrandizement of its perpetrators, this behaviour can often lead to injustice.

Late in the summer of 2017, tens of thousands of people protested a free speech rally held at the famous Boston Common in Boston, of which there were approximately 50 attendees. (If you want an analogy for the state of free speech in the west, 50 free speech advocates surrounded by tens of thousands of censors might do the trick.)

The reason for the protest of the rally, we are told by the media, was to “display solidarity” and to “protest hate”, and other therapeutic piffle found among the minutae of an earlier rally in Charlottesville, where one protester was murdered by a white-nationalist. But absent any other societal benefit besides mass therapy, the more obvious reason for the protest was public relations.

Up until the date of the event, the media class, in all its idiocy, panned it as “controversial”, “right-wing”, “alt-right”, suspiciously putting “free speech” in quotation marks as if it was not a free speech rally. Taking cue from his ideological handlers, the city mayor labelled the attendees white nationalists and Nazis, banking on whatever the media was reporting as the cold hard facts. Except those tasked with informing the people left the people misinformed.

The organizers of the event noted the mischaracterization. They were not what the media said they were. In fact they, like the media and city officials, denounced the voices of hate and bigotry.

The effort to connect the free speech event to the tragic white nationalist rally held the week before was immediately apparent to anyone whose emotions don’t tend to run on group-think. As the numbers attest to the amount of people sufficiently conditioned by the propaganda, sadly, that’s not too many people anymore. It had its desired effect and the parrots marched.

The surge of protesters, with signs denouncing the KKK, fascism and Donald Trump (of course), got exactly what they wanted, namely, the chance to signal the very virtues they could never earn otherwise, and to do so to a wide audience of fellow virtue-signallers. Except outside the solipsism of their fee-fees and mental servitude, they engaged in tyranny.

The Boston authorities, perhaps noticing the vast chasm between their own portrayal of the event and that of the organizers, had denied media access, silencing freedom of the press, and ultimately, the truth of the matter.

So called civil rights activists, without any irony, took part in the demonization. Iván Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice, joined in the fervour.

“You have the right to speak. You don’t have the right to threaten or intimidate people. You don’t have a right to promote racial violence.”

Mayor of Boston Marty Walsh, in a mealy-mouthed public relations attempt, applauded Boston’s censors with a flurry of euphemistic virtue-signalling:

“Today Boston showed there's no place for hate in our City. TY to all who peacefully stood up for our values, and the @bostonpolice.”

But as it is with nonsense like this it was quite the opposite. Boston showed that there was indeed a place for hate and bigotry in the city, so long as the gutter press, celebrities and the city officials had given the go-ahead. Throwing rocks and bottles of urine, clashing with police, and harassing and jeering at the few people who wanted to attend the rally, the protest as a whole was essentially a hate mob hell-bent on catharsis and megalomania, which they always disguise beneath the rubric of “solidarity” and other convenient words. Of course it was peaceful, until it wasn’t. And if we need to remind ourselves, all of it was against a free speech rally, which the press had routinely mischaracterized.

No matter. While the shouting down and heckling of people exercising their rights continued, the virtue-signalling had its desired effects. Queue the reward, namely, to garner applause and hashtags from journalists, politicians and celebrities, with which to bolster their own social media profiles.

But the whole charade resembled something far worse. The denial of liberties is an ancient and common affair, after all, and this was simply another. The behaviour and the setting brings to mind the activity of over 150 years earlier at Tremont Temple, near the Boston Common, where an abolitionist meeting was descended upon by protesters hell-bent on censorship.

First was the media’s mischaracterization, demonization, misinformation regarding both the group and free speech.

“The right of free speech, like every other right, may be abused and turned into licentiousness,” wrote the editors of the New York Herald. “The harangues of the abolition crusaders have brought the Union to the verge of dissolution, and vast multitudes of the population to poverty and starvation.”

Then came the subsequent mob violence. Many people were beaten. The venue was overrun by hecklers screaming epithets. The Boston mayor and police had earlier sanctioned, and finally, took part in the censorship, blocking the venue from access. It was tyranny.

Noticing the threat to fundamental liberties, Fredrick Douglass, an appalled attendee of the meetings, penned one of the greatest arguments for free speach ever written.

157 years later, and a mere stone’s throw away, a petulant mob under the spell of government and media sanctioned propaganda, threatened, harassed, and assaulted their fellow Americans, whom were all advocating for the same, most fundamental of human rights.

All of this without so much as a peep from the same people who claim to care about civil liberties. You know, It’s a bloody shame how history repeats itself, or in this case, never changes. But it’s downright pathetic, pernicious and dangerous when a mob propelled by group-think and propaganda begins virtue-signalling into tyranny.

LesMis

edit on 28-12-2017 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 28 2017 @ 06:55 PM
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I agree actually, to an extent.
It’s a common thing.

The only problem I have with the accusation of virtue signalling is that lately it has been directed at practically anyone who stands up for a cause, whether it was done out of selfish egotism or genuine passion to stand for a certain cause.


Which ruins it all really, because now it has become almost a default response by many trollish people who just want to disregard people’s concerns, no matter their intentions.


But it is certainly true that virtue signalling is a real and tangible thing...
Whether it will actually lead to tyranny however, is probably unlikely.



posted on Dec, 28 2017 @ 07:00 PM
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a reply to: Hazardous1408

I agree that it can be used wrongly. But I think I argued exactly how it can lead to tyranny.



posted on Dec, 28 2017 @ 07:47 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

I agree with you.

I had a day with nothing to do when the Boston rally happened, and so I watched livestreams of the whole event.

Here is a thread I did on it, though unfortunately it looks like the live stream video has been removed.

www.abovetopsecret.com...

Tens of thousands showed up to stop a few dozen people promoting free speech.

The video showed protestors attacking, harassing, surrounding and bullying these people.

The protestors clashed with police, and in some cases threw things at them.

And yet this was celebrated by people in the boston administration and media as a victory of love over hate.

Many people on that thread laughed off the abuse and silencing of the people promoting free speech.

However, I can tell you on the live thread where ATS was watching, even some liberal ATS members were disgusted by the attacks on the free speech people.

But this is the Orwellian future were are heading in.

Free speech = hate, censorship = love.



posted on Dec, 29 2017 @ 04:03 AM
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a reply to: Grambler

It’s everywhere. It becomes apparent that civil liberties and human rights are not the motivation for marching.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 01:49 PM
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Boston is a great city - and Music Hall has a fame almost as extensive as that of Boston. Nowhere more than here have the principles of human freedom been expounded. But for the circumstances already mentioned, it would seem almost presumption for me to say anything here about those principles. And yet, even here, in Boston, the moral atmosphere is dark and heavy. The principles of human liberty, even I correctly apprehended, find but limited support in this hour a trial. The world moves slowly, and Boston is much like the world. We thought the principle of free speech was an accomplished fact. Here, if nowhere else, we thought the right of the people to assemble and to express their opinion was secure. Dr. Channing had defended the right, Mr. Garrison had practically asserted the right, and Theodore Parker had maintained it with steadiness and fidelity to the last.

But here we are to-day contending for what we thought we gained years ago. The mortifying and disgraceful fact stares us in the face, that though Faneuil Hall and Bunker Hill Monument stand, freedom of speech is struck down. No lengthy detail of facts is needed. They are already notorious; far more so than will be wished ten years hence.

The world knows that last Monday a meeting assembled to discuss the question: "How Shall Slavery Be Abolished?" The world also knows that that meeting was invaded, insulted, captured by a mob of gentlemen, and thereafter broken up and dispersed by the order of the mayor, who refused to protect it, though called upon to do so. If this had been a mere outbreak of passion and prejudice among the baser sort, maddened by rum and hounded on by some wily politician to serve some immediate purpose, - a mere exceptional affair, - it might be allowed to rest with what has already been said. But the leaders of the mob were gentlemen. They were men who pride themselves upon their respect for law and order.

These gentlemen brought their respect for the law with them and proclaimed it loudly while in the very act of breaking the law. Theirs was the law of slavery. The law of free speech and the law for the protection of public meetings they trampled under foot, while they greatly magnified the law of slavery.

The scene was an instructive one. Men seldom see such a blending of the gentleman with the rowdy, as was shown on that occasion. It proved that human nature is very much the same, whether in tarpaulin or broadcloth. Nevertheless, when gentlemen approach us in the character of lawless and abandoned loafers, - assuming for the moment their manners and tempers, - they have themselves to blame if they are estimated below their quality.

No right was deemed by the fathers of the Government more sacred than the right of speech. It was in their eyes, as in the eyes of all thoughtful men, the great moral renovator of society and government. Daniel Webster called it a homebred right, a fireside privilege. Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one's thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down. They know its power. Thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, founded in injustice and wrong, are sure to tremble, if men are allowed to reason of righteousness, temperance, and of a judgment to come in their presence. Slavery cannot tolerate free speech. Five years of its exercise would banish the auction block and break every chain in the South. They will have none of it there, for they have the power. But shall it be so here?

Even here in Boston, and among the friends of freedom, we hear two voices: one denouncing the mob that broke up our meeting on Monday as a base and cowardly outrage; and another, deprecating and regretting the holding of such a meeting, by such men, at such a time. We are told that the meeting was ill-timed, and the parties to it unwise.

Why, what is the matter with us? Are we going to palliate and excuse a palpable and flagrant outrage on the right of speech, by implying that only a particular description of persons should exercise that right? Are we, at such a time, when a great principle has been struck down, to quench the moral indignation which the deed excites, by casting reflections upon those on whose persons the outrage has been committed? After all the arguments for liberty to which Boston has listened for more than a quarter of a century, has she yet to learn that the time to assert a right is the time when the right itself is called in question, and that the men of all others to assert it are the men to whom the right has been denied?

It would be no vindication of the right of speech to prove that certain gentlemen of great distinction, eminent for their learning and ability, are allowed to freely express their opinions on all subjects - including the subject of slavery. Such a vindication would need, itself, to be vindicated. It would add insult to injury. Not even an old-fashioned abolition meeting could vindicate that right in Boston just now. There can be no right of speech where any man, however lifted up, or however humble, however young, or however old, is overawed by force, and compelled to suppress his honest sentiments.

Equally clear is the right to hear. To suppress free speech is a double wrong. It violates the rights of the hearer as well as those of the speaker. It is just as criminal to rob a man of his right to speak and hear as it would be to rob him of his money. I have no doubt that Boston will vindicate this right. But in order to do so, there must be no concessions to the enemy. When a man is allowed to speak because he is rich and powerful, it aggravates the crime of denying the right to the poor and humble.

The principle must rest upon its own proper basis. And until the right is accorded to the humblest as freely as to the most exalted citizen, the government of Boston is but an empty name, and its freedom a mockery. A man's right to speak does not depend upon where he was born or upon his color. The simple quality of manhood is the solid basis of the right - and there let it rest forever.

- Frederick Douglass



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 01:58 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope



But it’s downright pathetic, pernicious and dangerous when a mob propelled by group-think and propaganda begins virtue-signalling into tyranny.


I actually agree. Mob mentality and such can be dangerous when the group thinks their beliefs or ideas are more virtuous.

We can witness the same mindset at many of the Trump rallies from the campaign. That mob mentality and sense of mighty virtue causes people to beat others because they were exercising free speech.

Goes to show it's well beyond politics and about human nature.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:07 PM
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You REALIZE the entire topic is predicated on, and IS "virtue signaling" itself...

...RIGHT?



"virtue signaling"...
Just an alt-right neo-reactionary buzzword...




posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:14 PM
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originally posted by: DanteGaland
You REALIZE the entire topic is predicated on, and IS "virtue signaling" itself...

...RIGHT?



"virtue signaling"...
Just an alt-right neo-reactionary buzzword...



There is difference between espousing virtues For the sake of freedom, and espousing virtues for the sake of self-aggrandizement. I suspect you’re a proponent of the latter.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:17 PM
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originally posted by: introvert
a reply to: LesMisanthrope



But it’s downright pathetic, pernicious and dangerous when a mob propelled by group-think and propaganda begins virtue-signalling into tyranny.


I actually agree. Mob mentality and such can be dangerous when the group thinks their beliefs or ideas are more virtuous.

We can witness the same mindset at many of the Trump rallies from the campaign. That mob mentality and sense of mighty virtue causes people to beat others because they were exercising free speech.

Goes to show it's well beyond politics and about human nature.


The difference is that interrupting and disrupting speech and heckling is a form of censorship. What little violence there was against anti-trump protesters was the result of their disruption and censorship, not for any reason of virtue.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:17 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

No possible way you watched the ENTIRE video in that span of time. TEN min video, you posted a reply SEVEN min later.

STOP VIRTUE SIGNALING AT ME BRO!



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:17 PM
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a reply to: DanteGaland

Recall #BringBackOurGirls?

That is a prime example of blatant virtue signalling. Everyone tweets on it to show how much they care about the kidnapped Nigerian school girls, but it actually achieves nothing of any real consequence except to show everyone else how much you care.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 02:18 PM
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originally posted by: DanteGaland
a reply to: LesMisanthrope

No possible way you watched the ENTIRE video in that span of time. TEN min video, you posted a reply SEVEN min later.

STOP VIRTUE SIGNALING AT ME BRO!


Yes, I didn’t watch your video. Surely you can make an argument yourself instead of passing off someone else’s opinion with your own.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 03:08 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope



The difference is that interrupting and disrupting speech and heckling is a form of censorship. What little violence there was against anti-trump protesters was the result of their disruption and censorship, not for any reason of virtue.


No. It actually falls right in line with your description in the OP.



But it’s downright pathetic, pernicious and dangerous when a mob propelled by group-think and propaganda begins virtue-signalling into tyranny.


We witnessed it many times at the Trump rallies.

Beating minorities...heckling Muslims that are peacefully protesting...etc. All because the group has been fed propaganda that their anti-whatever beliefs are morally-correct and superior.



posted on Jan, 6 2018 @ 06:34 PM
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originally posted by: introvert
a reply to: LesMisanthrope



The difference is that interrupting and disrupting speech and heckling is a form of censorship. What little violence there was against anti-trump protesters was the result of their disruption and censorship, not for any reason of virtue.


No. It actually falls right in line with your description in the OP.



But it’s downright pathetic, pernicious and dangerous when a mob propelled by group-think and propaganda begins virtue-signalling into tyranny.


We witnessed it many times at the Trump rallies.

Beating minorities...heckling Muslims that are peacefully protesting...etc. All because the group has been fed propaganda that their anti-whatever beliefs are morally-correct and superior.



It doesn’t. Heckling and disrupting a speech is censorship on account of it disrupting someone’s right to speak and another’s right to hear it. I used Frederick Douglass’ case as an example. People protested and disrupted his speeches. Hence his plea for free speech.

It was a trump rally, meaning it was Trump’s time to speak and his supporter’s opportunity to listen. It was routinely disrupted by so-called “peaceful protesters”, more accurately hecklers, suppressing the rights of both the speaker and those that wanted to hear it. Any backlash against the hecklers was largely over exaggerated. Mostly they were shown the door. But if Trump supporters showed up at a Muslim or Black Lives Matter rally and did the same thing, you might have a point.



posted on Jan, 9 2018 @ 06:03 AM
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originally posted by: LesMisanthrope

originally posted by: DanteGaland
You REALIZE the entire topic is predicated on, and IS "virtue signaling" itself...

...RIGHT?



"virtue signaling"...
Just an alt-right neo-reactionary buzzword...



There is difference between espousing virtues For the sake of freedom, and espousing virtues for the sake of self-aggrandizement. I suspect you’re a proponent of the latter.


I think what they're saying DanteGaland, is that espousing virtues for the sake of their 'freedom' is subjectively more virtuous than for self-aggrandizement for unimportant reasons or social justice or whatever else and therefore is more important to their self-concept and others like them D: D:
edit on 9-1-2018 by melatonin because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 9 2018 @ 06:10 AM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
a reply to: DanteGaland

Recall #BringBackOurGirls?

That is a prime example of blatant virtue signalling. Everyone tweets on it to show how much they care about the kidnapped Nigerian school girls, but it actually achieves nothing of any real consequence except to show everyone else how much you care.


Whereas this post, DanteGaland, is groundbreaking and doesn't show how much Ketsuko cares about this issue but will have real-world consequences beyond my response to this bunch of wordy things on the intertubz.



posted on Jan, 9 2018 @ 06:58 AM
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a reply to: introvert

Not to douse water.....but the thread is about free speech and its suppression in Boston. How did Trump get shoe horned into the topic?



posted on Jan, 9 2018 @ 08:05 AM
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a reply to: melatonin

Hardly, it's an example of what virtue signalling is.

You want to have an effect on something, go get involved in a meaningful way. What I do on my own time to get involved is not to topic of discussion here and if it became the topic, then it would be true virtue signalling. Do you want to talk about all the wonderful things you do to "be the change you want to see in the world?"



posted on Jan, 9 2018 @ 09:16 AM
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originally posted by: melatonin

originally posted by: LesMisanthrope

originally posted by: DanteGaland
You REALIZE the entire topic is predicated on, and IS "virtue signaling" itself...

...RIGHT?



"virtue signaling"...
Just an alt-right neo-reactionary buzzword...



There is difference between espousing virtues For the sake of freedom, and espousing virtues for the sake of self-aggrandizement. I suspect you’re a proponent of the latter.


I think what they're saying DanteGaland, is that espousing virtues for the sake of their 'freedom' is subjectively more virtuous than for self-aggrandizement for unimportant reasons or social justice or whatever else and therefore is more important to their self-concept and others like them D: D:


It is objectively more beneficial to society than any selfish preening you wish to take part in.



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