Notes and Thoughts

Discursive working and evergreen notes


The kek wars

Author John Michael Greer
Sources (1)(2)(3)(4)

Very interesting! Probably bullshit, but thought provoking with some important kernels of truth. I wonder what the author thinks of the Social Justice movement, which has its own gods, and seems to have seized the energy and the religious fervor from the right. I feel a tad uncomfortable trying to parse the true from the false in this text because I'm conscious the road to epistemic hell is short and paved with Woo, but I appreciate the generativity of this regardless.

  • Aristocracies are defined by who they exclude. Education has long been, and is currently, the means of exclusion.

  • The word 'villain' used to mean belonging to the lower class.

  • Cultural institutions have also become exclusionary, and are a means for the aristocrats to distinguish themselves from the masses. Art used to be popular, now it's a means of signaling sophistication.

  • The author suggests that the rise of occultism is a direct response to the closing off of mainstream institutions for representing the interests of the masses.
    • Magic and witchcraft are, almost by definition, anti-institutional forces and represent the masses/oppressed.
  • Magic was "defined by the great twentieth century mage Dion Fortune as the art and science of causing change in consciousness in accordance with will."

  • Aristocracies win power by being in touch with reality. This sounds a lot like the concept of alive vs dead players

    "Every aristocracy begins as a set of tough, capable individuals who come to terms with some reality the previous ruling elite has ignored too long, and use that reality as a battering ram to break down the doors of the status quo and take power from the overly delicate hands that previously held it."

  • Aristocracies are in danger of falling into a circumscribed bubble, where they believe that the policies they advance that help themselves are the only moral policies; that there are no alternatives.

  • In the 1980s a single income working class family could afford a house and a car. in 2010 that wasn't possible. Is that true? Certainly in large cities that seems true.

  • The author says that meditation is a form of privileged people magic, aka systematically causing changes in consciousness. Corporations and the upper class started practicing this as a way of maintaining and strengthening their reality distortion bubble (for themselves).

  • The blowback came from the working class and also from Elite Overproduction.

  • Aristocrats trained more people than there was space for in the elite managerial structure - this creates a savage competition for spots that increases the efficiency of the structure.

  • The also-rans - the ones who have lost the game, who haven't gotten the life they were promised - ranging from the type living in their parents basement to the successful but not elite successful type - congregated in anonymous forums free of the limitations of elite discourse.

  • The also-rans have freedom that their "successful" counterparts do not. To be successful in this type of competition you need to tightly conform to the system, because anything less is a weapon in the hands of a rival. Because the aristocrats have bubbled themselves a way from reality, the also-rans are the ones who have the freedom to talk about the negatives of that reality for everyone else. They can talk about the thing that appeals to the masses.

  • The author suggests Curtis Yarvin's founding of the neoreactionary movement in 2007 was the first breakthrough from a dead conservative ideology. He introduced the idea of the Cathedral, an enforced mainstream consensus of the elites that justifies their rule. Many things got looped under the heading Alt Right, some of it very racist and fascist.

  • What ideology becomes central to the opposition movement can be a wild card. It doesn't have to be a fascist, terrible one, it doesn't have to be a nice one. If it's one that has guerrilla warfare elements and appeals to military veterans theirs more likely to be a violent civil war.

  • The other option is magic. (?) Chaos Magic became popular on the chans in 2015. It was another entry in the genre of magic that tries to bridge the gap between it and modern science. Magic and science have similar relationship to cultural institutions where, when a new strain of magic terminology comes along, scientists try and distance themselves from it.

  • Chaos magic treats gods, demons, etc. as imaginary constructs that focus the latent magic of the practitioner. The author prefers different branches, but says hey whatever works. This seems like an alternative description of Memetics

  • Chaos magic was well suited to the internet. The basic working tool of chaos magic is the sigil, a picture representing the "workings" of a magical construct. Internet memes make good sigils. Chaos magic has a low learning curve. It also doesn't, as the author suggests, tell you how to interact with non-human spirits.

  • The chan's have always been a fertile field of internet culture. Many memes have been born there. They are also a place for banned conversations.

  • Repression has always spurred people to do the repressed thing. War on drugs led to more drug use (actually I think it maintained constant but wtv), Victorian England had a lot of brothels, and campaigns against hate speech spur non-PC conversation.

  • Running jokes/inside culture references were common in the chans. kek came from World of Warcraft. If you type lol at a faction in WoW it came out as kek. Pepe the Frog became a mascot for the /pol/ crowd - it came from a webcomic about a slacker. If there's a repeating number in the post's digits, then it's called a 'get'.

  • Posts about trumps seemed to have an unusual number of 'gets'. A random anon posted "trump will win" and it got straight 7s. Kek turned out to reference an egyptian god, which was found to be (erroneously) represented as a frog god.

  • So the channers adopted Trump as the representative of their god naturally . They focused their magic on making Hillary collapse in public, they adopted a song w/ a frog on the front of the CD called shadillay.

  • The other half of the magical war of the 2016 election was the way in which the Clinton campaign isolated itself from reality. The author suggests meditation and yoga, when detached from their usual context, become ways of blinding yourself to reality and convincing you that everything is ok. Sometimes thats good, but sometimes you need to realize that everything is not ok.

  • Carl Jung described a pattern of synchronicities that binds the planet together. When many synchronicities cluster together around specific images or ideals, he called it an archetype. Archetypes are the underlying whales of the subconscious. They are clusters of arational images with lots of emotional energy. Seems like a base frame from which people orient

  • The Shadow is the archetype of the enemy. It represents everything we hate, fear, and as psychologists note it represents the things in us we hate, fear.
    • You might encounter someone who you arationally despise. Everything they say makes you hate them more. In Carl Jung's world the Shadow has seized your thinking and is projecting itself onto the other.
      • Everything you hate about the other in this instance is an example of the thing you hate in you. If you see them as lying and arrogant, it's a projection of your own distrust.
      • You can separate the Shadow from ordinary dislike by seeing if you can list positive things about the person. If you can't, your in the Shadow
  • Carl Jung thought Hitler and the Nazis were dangerous well before others, because he thought they embraced a Germanic archetype, that of Wotan, a huntsman like figure that rides down his enemies.

  • In Native American mythology there's the story of the Changer, the moon, who in one interaction after another changes people, many who resisted because they didn't want the world to change. No grand climactic battle, just interaction after interaction reshapes the world.
    • Having refused to change, the beings are changed regardless into their established routine. They were continuing in their established patterns, and then they're changed into beings that just did that. The author suggests thats happening to Trumps opponents, being cast into default, repetitive role like protestor.
  • The author thinks that Trump will continue, and will win, because he is some type of avatar of this archetype and is a shadow to the left.