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1 hour ago, anthony said:

But the neurosis is true to some.

Tony,

Crony elitist globalists certainly are narcissists.

They want to rule and consider most of mankind as livestock.

Some of them, like Soros, even look like James Bond villains.

:) 

As to psychologists, I don't put much faith in their consistency. Some are good and some are bad.

Often, lay-people have a firmer grasp on reality than they do. Lay-people, for example, work for a living.

:evil: 

Michael

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2 hours ago, anthony said:

My feeling is narcissism is poorly understood, much too often diagnosed lately. It might be used as a smear tactic against anyone who is considered too extroverted, brash, assertive or - "selfish". I have strongest doubts about President Trump's oft-called narcissism. But the neurosis is true to some. I once had occasion to research the condition (painful story involving a woman), and if I recall right, there is a craving common to such people involving getting their "Narcissistic Supply"- from anyone and everyone. Most often the prominent quality they have is a potent charm, like a powerful lamp which they can switch on for the fortunate recipient, then arbitrarily remove, holding one in their thrall for a long time. It is as if they create an addiction for their approval. Seldom, are they crass, blunt or plain-spoken, it is their suave, empathic outward demeanor which finds and attracts to them a constant, fresh "supply" of general adoration from people around them. No, I wouldn't say this of the President who reacts spontaneously, almost guilelessly (who can tell if/when he's deliberately sowing confusion in his opponents?) and without overmuch charm. However, I have suspicions of one or two others' narcissist traits... ?

I don't believe in "narcissistic supply" with people with the character defect of being narcissists.  Conceptually narcissistic supply will find its roots in either having low self-esteem, or fear, or both.  From my experience with narcissists, they don't have low self-esteem nor are they in fear.  In my thinking, those explanations are empaths trying to explain narcissists from a fundamental of empathy--but there is a contradiction to try to explain a narcissism in terms of empathy, they don't have it (or much of it).  So insofar as narcissism being poorly understood, the best that I have read about it is in the book In Sheep's Clothing.  The book doesn't directly cover narcissism, rather it covers aggressive personalities, how they operate, and why.  There isn't much in that book that I disagree with.  It provides a foundation that explains the roots of aggressive personalities being rooted in aggression---not self-esteem, not fear, nor both of these.

Narcissists are selfish---irrationally selfish.  They don't mind making sacrifices to others and others to themselves.  Rational selfishness wouldn't make these sacrifices, but could still exhibit some of the classic "traits" of narcissism, yet it isn't narcissism, it's rational egoism.  Regardless, concerning traits the key to differentiate is the sacrifices they are making, and Trump doesn't mind making a lot of them.

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6 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Tony,

Crony elitist globalists certainly are narcissists.

They want to rule and consider most of mankind as livestock.

Some of them, like Soros, even look like James Bond villains.

:) 

As to psychologists, I don't put much faith in their consistency. Some are good and some are bad.

Often, lay-people have a firmer grasp on reality than they do. Lay-people, for example, work for a living.

:evil: 

Michael

Michael,

Globalists are Ellsworth Tooheys, on a grander scale. When they've partially succeeded in collectivizing individuals into convenient 'groups', next and ongoing - collectivizing individual countries - One World, in loving harmony, and all that stuff. One noose for all necks, and guess who'll hold the leash. :) You have a good point, narcissism and power-lust-sacrificial altruism could be highly complementary in a person's makeup, in whom the psychological neurosis and the nasty moral philosophy would be self-reinforcing, I'd think.

I know you're funning about the looks of Soros and Bond villains. The aesthetic and style of political leaders today matters overmuch, I think, in an extremely image aware, media/movie-influenced period of unreality. Look at the string of boyishly urbane leaders, or the Mother figure (Angela of Germany) and one maiden aunt (Theresa of Britain). The superficial appearances and demeanor satisfy some emotional need in people . ( I get distinctly from actors and artists and that general type I know of here, aesthetes are the biggest anti-Trumpers. I couldn't care less and would back him if he looked like Quasimodo, which he doesn't).

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So did MSK and Anthony just form the principle that All globalists are narcissists?...  Are they?

I mean, what aboot the sociopath globalists, and the psychopath globalists?  We don't want to leave those out!

:evil:

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12 hours ago, KorbenDallas said:

So did MSK and Anthony just form the principle that All globalists are narcissists?...  Are they?

I mean, what aboot the sociopath globalists, and the psychopath globalists?  We don't want to leave those out!

:evil:

Look for commonality before dismissing: independence (and so, individualism) is loathed and feared by narcissist and globalist-collectivist. Both share a loss of selfhood, "self-sovereignty". There is or could well be, causal compatibility between a pathology and an ideology. (Within an individual).

But "all" of them? I didn't say or believe that.

All S is not P. 

All e.g. actors, are not narcissists. All career politicians are not narcissists. However, due to the nature of those professions, ie. receiving public attention and adoration -and having the power over others lives - it would be a very safe bet that there's a higher incidence of narcissists among them both, than the national average .

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13 hours ago, KorbenDallas said:

So did MSK and Anthony just form the principle that All globalists are narcissists?...  Are they?

Korben,

No.

The leaders and many followers of the leaders are narcissists.

But some are merely deluded followers and the rest are toadies.

:evil:  :)

 Michael

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As Robert Heinlein said in Time Enough for Love:

Quote

Political tags — such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, conservative, and so forth — are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire.

When I say elitist, I am referring to "those who want people to be controlled" and, generally, want to do the controlling and have massive exceptions for themselves. This is because they believe, deep in their souls, they can't exist without inferiors to look down on. That is the root of their metaphysics. They define themselves by those they deem inferior.

President Trump's very existence is a slap in the face to them. That he become President and is succeeding in actually doing good things is a repudiation of everything they believe in, i.e., their own superiority.

They hate him on a metaphysical level, not just a personal or political or psychological one. They believe if he exists, they cannot.

If that isn't one of the roots of narcissism, I don't know what is.

Michael

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It looks like President Trump is going to declassify the "muh Russians!" monkeyshines--including FISA warrant applications and lots of other stuff before the midterms.

He just tweeted this:

And he retweeted a clip from that program:

Devin Nunes states and he will make all House interrogations (or witness-interviews) on "muh Russians!" public before the midterms and categorically stated that President Trump has no choice but to declassify the "muh Russians!" monkeyshines. (I paraphrase. :) )

I read President Trump's retweet as agreement and a signal that it is coming soon.

Michael

 

 

 

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On 9/16/2018 at 11:51 AM, anthony said:

Look for commonality before dismissing: independence (and so, individualism) is loathed and feared by narcissist and globalist-collectivist. Both share a loss of selfhood, "self-sovereignty". There is or could well be, causal compatibility between a pathology and an ideology. (Within an individual).

But "all" of them? I didn't say or believe that.

All S is not P. 

All e.g. actors, are not narcissists. All career politicians are not narcissists. However, due to the nature of those professions, ie. receiving public attention and adoration -and having the power over others lives - it would be a very safe bet that there's a higher incidence of narcissists among them both, than the national average .

I really wasn't dismissing anything, my point was when MSK said, "Crony elitist globalists certainly are narcissists" it means All globalists are narcissists.  Which they aren't.  So when you say All S is not P, that's amphibole and it's ambiguous:  logically the statement could mean No globalists are narcissists, or it could mean Some globalists are not narcissists.  So by saying All S is not P to try to clarify things, it's actually not clarifying them.

On 9/16/2018 at 11:51 AM, anthony said:

Look for commonality before dismissing: independence (and so, individualism) is loathed and feared by narcissist and globalist-collectivist. Both share a loss of selfhood, "self-sovereignty". There is or could well be, causal compatibility between a pathology and an ideology. (Within an individual).

I don't agree with this necessarily.  Like I said earlier, I don't agree with the idea that all narcissists have low self-esteem or are they in fear.  You're saying here that a narcissist and globalist-collectivist has a loss of self, so they become collectivists.  But the problem is that many narcissists have a strong sense of self, and don't become collectivists.  I know two narcissists that are like this, meaning the Objectivist/NB pathological explanations for them do not fit these two at all.  For a principle to be valid, it has to work on all members of the class, and it doesn't.

On 9/16/2018 at 11:51 AM, anthony said:

All career politicians are not narcissists. However, due to the nature of those professions, ie. receiving public attention and adoration -and having the power over others lives - it would be a very safe bet that there's a higher incidence of narcissists among them both, than the national average .

[Some career politicians are narcissists], yes I agree with that.  And I agree that politics attract aggressor personalities.  But I don't agree that all narcissists need attention and adoration, that comes from Freud and not many psychologists still believe today.  Covert narcissism exists, convert narcissists don't need attention or adoration, and in fact they can be quite the loners.  I will agree that all narcissists want a measure of control over other people's lives.  You're right that in politics there are a higher incidence of narcissists and aggressive personalities.  You'll also find this in bureaucracies of any kind---hospitals, government, the red cross, etc---they love the power structure and manipulation possibilities and their ability to "hide" their true personalities.

Why do you think Trump was so attracted to government and politics?   He is the kind of narcissist that needs attention and adoration, his twitter feed screams narcissism, he lies, manipulates, deceives others, and he makes sacrifices to innocent people---and yet somehow isn't a narcissist?  Is he fit to be President because he's a narcissist?  I didn't vote for him, but I don't think he should be removed from office.  Certainly previous presidents have been narcissists.  But Tony, Steve Wolfer said Trump was a narcissist, and I am saying it, and other Objectivish people have said it, so I'm having a hard time understanding how you can think that he isn't a narcissist?

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23 hours ago, Jonathan said:

Check out this bumbling twit:

[...]

He makes Trump look like a genius and a poet in comparison.

Aw comon', you know that video was a super-cut to make him appear to be that bad.  I'm no fan of Obama, but he's not that bad at his bumbling, "uhms", and stammers.

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20 hours ago, KorbenDallas said:

I really wasn't dismissing anything, my point was when MSK said, "Crony elitist globalists certainly are narcissists" it means All globalists are narcissists.  Which they aren't.  So when you say All S is not P, that's amphibole and it's ambiguous:  logically the statement could mean No globalists are narcissists, or it could mean Some globalists are not narcissists.  So by saying All S is not P to try to clarify things, it's actually not clarifying them.

I don't agree with this necessarily.  Like I said earlier, I don't agree with the idea that all narcissists have low self-esteem or are they in fear.  You're saying here that a narcissist and globalist-collectivist has a loss of self, so they become collectivists.  But the problem is that many narcissists have a strong sense of self, and don't become collectivists.  I know two narcissists that are like this, meaning the Objectivist/NB pathological explanations for them do not fit these two at all.  For a principle to be valid, it has to work on all members of the class, and it doesn't.

[Some career politicians are narcissists], yes I agree with that.  And I agree that politics attract aggressor personalities.  But I don't agree that all narcissists need attention and adoration, that comes from Freud and not many psychologists still believe today.  Covert narcissism exists, convert narcissists don't need attention or adoration, and in fact they can be quite the loners.  I will agree that all narcissists want a measure of control over other people's lives.  You're right that in politics there are a higher incidence of narcissists and aggressive personalities.  You'll also find this in bureaucracies of any kind---hospitals, government, the red cross, etc---they love the power structure and manipulation possibilities and their ability to "hide" their true personalities.

Why do you think Trump was so attracted to government and politics?   He is the kind of narcissist that needs attention and adoration, his twitter feed screams narcissism, he lies, manipulates, deceives others, and he makes sacrifices to innocent people---and yet somehow isn't a narcissist?  Is he fit to be President because he's a narcissist?  I didn't vote for him, but I don't think he should be removed from office.  Certainly previous presidents have been narcissists.  But Tony, Steve Wolfer said Trump was a narcissist, and I am saying it, and other Objectivish people have said it, so I'm having a hard time understanding how you can think that he isn't a narcissist?

Korben, "Why do you think Trump was so attracted to government and politics?" That question gets to the meat of it. Why, indeed?

(Going back over the political personalities I have seen, it may be that narcissism is a job requirement! I'm half serious,  narcissists are calculated as 10 - 15% of a population given by one psychologist - I wouldn't be surprised if politicians measured closer to 50%).

So what makes Trump any different, why should he be picked out when many others are not? 

Types of narcissism given in an online search: Overt. Covert. Seductive. Vindictive. Name any pol, and we can have a fun game pinning these simplistic labels on him/her. Obama, certainly "covert" (with some vindictive). Hillary? John Kerry? Biden? ha.

Donald Trump, for the sake of argument but I'm unconvinced - is let us say, an "overt" narcissist. 

Returning to your question, I have to ask: is it possible that an individual who's narcissistic may also possess rational convictions and purpose and do objectively good things? I think so - I guess a minority people are in absolutely perfect psychological health, and while he may be un-intellectual (I am sure not anti-, as some O'ists say) he is quite the realist and he has at least one high principle, not so distant from an O'ist intellectual. And I don't think that the President's motives are psychological and narcissistic-driven. Understand, I think any person is most often highly complicated, with mixed premises, but if I believed, from watching him from the start of his campaign, that Trump saw *only* his personal gain and was motivated *only* by self-aggrandizement, power lust and narcissism--I would not have gone on supporting him. I believe that he is the genuine article. He has from long ago seen and heard from the 'ordinary' people, those many side-lined and forgotten, and thinks that they, not the progressivist intellectuals, were the backbone of America. That they became his power-base because he understands them, is no more than what any politician will tap into, and has to, if he wants to effect change. There are also good and valuable uses and applications of power, and of course I take it that you are on the side of a Great America, (although it's fair and rational to query your President's definition of this, and his methods)..

On another level, his actions are kicking back against Socialists/altruists/Leftists, who were leading the USA on a dangerous path; that's more than enough reason for me.

There is also the nature (narcissistic, second handed, vile and sacrificial-of-the-nation) of the very worst of his outraged/scared opponents, e.g. glibly preaching "democracy" while trying to hinder/destroy any democratic processes. If one had recently dropped down to Earth from an alien planet, one would need only to take one look at them, and know they must be stopped and vote for Trump (again). By your enemies you can be known.

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14 hours ago, KorbenDallas said:

I really wasn't dismissing anything, my point was when MSK said, "Crony elitist globalists certainly are narcissists" it means All globalists are narcissists.  Which they aren't.

Korben,

This is a cognitive error I see often and, God knows, I've done it enough myself.

In O-Land, this is called dropping the context. There are times when one is discussing all-or-nothing cases, and other times when one is generalizing. There is no way to discuss the topic we were discussing without generalizing. We weren't talking about, say, a scientific experiment and falsification controls. We were talking about broad categories of people. And when you do that, you can't even say all people have two arms and two legs. So dropping that context to apply a different standard, then point out your own error as if it were the error of the other is... well, an error. :) 

btw - The fake news media does this (especially progressives), albeit in a more dishonest manner. They know they are dropping context when they do it. In fact, they seek opportunities to drop context to make it look like someone said something stupid or outrageous. (Now stop and ask yourself if I am talking about every single case that the fake news media has presented--every one that has ever existed and ever will exist--or a generality. :) See what I mean about context?)

Since I like precision of communication, I have been guilty of this a lot. Nowadays, I try to figure out who I am talking to and what is it they are talking about, including if it is general or specific, i.e., if it is induction or deduction, before digging into their errors and feeling all superior and stuff. :) 

Michael

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9 hours ago, anthony said:

Donald Trump, for the sake of argument but I'm unconvinced - is let us say, an "overt" narcissist. 

Tony,

I am totally unconvinced. I find the idea that President Trump is a narcissist laughable. Mental health professionals who claim this show, to me, just how much quackery there still is in this field.

For example, President Trump is not a control freak who avoids putting himself in vulnerable situations at all costs. Avoiding embarrassment through excessive control is a universal among narcissists. On the contrary, Trump openly invites high-risk situations.

A good example is at his rallies. He will often bring a total stranger on stage and hand over his microphone. Does he know what the person will say? No. He may have a good idea, but ultimately, he hands over control. A true narcissist would never do that. Ever. The risk of being embarrassed would be too great to even contemplate for him.

Narcissists love to be scripted in their control freak situations. When they go off script, they tend to stomp on their dongs and get entangled in unending bickering over nothing. So they just don't do it.

Narcissists don't tell people to rise and achieve excellence. On the contrary, they pick at the faults of everybody so they can pump themselves up. President Trump said many times he wants everybody in America to become as rich as he is. A narcissist says get used to no longer being self-reliant, get used to the government handouts he controls, because those jobs are never coming back. (Remind you of someone? :) )

Here in O-Land, it's surprising to see people criticize a man with a healthy dose of egoism, self-esteem and high-productive focus as pathological precisely because of those traits, but there it is. I don't know what they see when they read Rand. It's obviously not the same thing I see.

Winners are not narcissists by definition. The idea that they are is a cultural sickness promoted by our current victimization media where everyone is either an oppressed slave, a heartless master, or the hero rescuer and savior--the government.

Underneath, to these people it's all about tearing down greatness. That's easier than becoming great themselves. When they look on the greatness President Trump has achieved and look at their own lives, it's like a loud hard slap in the face. It's so much easier to try to tear him down than try to live up to the promise of what he represents in America--where all men and women can become great, individually great, if they work at it.

And when they can't get sanction of the victim to work on President Trump to make him feel guilty, but instead get a haymaker of a counterpunch as response--without apology, they hate him all the more as they pick themselves up off the floor.

Narcissist don't like earning things. The feel entitled to them by default. They even feel entitled to tear down greatness in the human spirit.

President Trump stands for earned winning. Working hard and winning. Becoming great from focused effort at excellence. But earning victory is not for everybody. Many prefer to have it handed to them by their peers whether they deserve it or not.

Michael

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5 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Here in O-Land, it's surprising to see people criticize a man with a healthy dose of egoism, self-esteem and high-productive focus as pathological precisely because of those traits, but there it is. I don't know what they see when they read Rand. It's obviously not the same thing I see.

They see suave, debonair Frisco giving a philosophically deep money speech, or John Galt taking over a radio presentation and addressing the audience in the manner of a professor. If they don't see that style in someone real life, then they don't see that person's intelligence and productivity that they themselves will never match, and they look down their noses at the substance and accomplishments. They're kind of living in the aesthetic trance from having read Rand's novels, and having cast themselves as being equal to her fictional heroes, despite not really having accomplished shit.

They also tend to forget what a "bad boy" Roark could be.

 

5 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Narcissist don't like earning things. The feel entitled to them by default. They even feel entitled to tear down greatness in the human spirit.

President Trump stands for earned winning. Working hard and winning. Becoming great from focused effort at excellence. But earning victory is not for everybody. Many prefer to have it handed to them by their peers whether they deserve it or not.

True narcissists promise things that they don't deliver. Obama did a lot of that. He was stylistically smooth and gave the appearance of being an intellectual, and of knowing what he was doing. He made people feel that he looked as if he should be in charge.

Dingbat Ocasio-Cortez is currently trying to do the same, but not succeeding as well at the pose. She's recently been asked a few times by members of the press about how she intends to pay for her 40 trillion dollar proposed commie spending spree. She has been able to come up with only 2 trillion by proposing seriously putting the wealthy through the ringer (and disregarding the consequences of doing so). And then she starts to promise what narcissist Obama had promised: Socializing shit will actually SAVE lots of fucking money! Yeah! Hoorah! We can give shit away, left and right, to millions of more patients, students and consumers, and even do more consuming than producing, and the result will be savings and cheaper prices and rainbows and gumdrops and happiness! Cuz we're the richest country so we can therefore afford to raise our moral standards and become just as civilized as all of the countries which are poor due to having adopted Ocasio-Cortez's wonderful ideology. 

And, yet, Trump, whose ideas deliver more than promised, is accused of being a "narcissist"?

Hahaha!

J

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What are the most useful trait criteria for a presumed  personality disorder of Narcissism? Or, what characterizes the suite of behaviours that constitute this presumed disorder?

Are these criteria appreciably different from common usage of "narcissism"? Moreover, without an operating definition, how will we avoid speaking past each other?  A question I have in my mind is "what are the most common meanings/usages of the term right here?" (eg, what is the "control freak" criterion?)

7 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:
17 hours ago, anthony said:

Donald Trump, for the sake of argument but I'm unconvinced - is let us say, an "overt" narcissist. 

Tony,

I am totally unconvinced. I find the idea that President Trump is a narcissist laughable. Mental health professionals who claim this show, to me, just how much quackery there still is in this field.

For example,

For example, the diagnostic criteria for Narcissism from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals over time?  Who first identified observable trait syndromes?

What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?  How is it diagnosed?  Is such a diagnostic entity a relict or artefact of psychological guesswork, bias, conceptual emptiness -- or other epistemic barrier to its reality in people we live with?

Once these questions are adequately answered in your mind, dear reader, would it be useful to cite a particular argument that ascribes narcissism to the President?

Edited by william.scherk
Clarification, grammar

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1 hour ago, william.scherk said:

What are the most useful trait criteria for a presumed  personality disorder of Narcissism? Or, what characterizes the suite of behaviours that constitute this presumed disorder?

Are asking, or are you assigning someone homework?

If asking, I'd suggest Google as a starting place.

1 hour ago, william.scherk said:

Are these criteria appreciably different from common usage of "narcissism"? Moreover, without an operating definition, how will we avoid speaking past each other?  A question I have in my mind is "what are the most common meanings/usages of the term right here?" (eg, what is the "control freak" criterion?)

A bit of a tangent here, but if I wanted to make the world a better place, ya know what I'd do? I'd make a million clones of me.

Can't afford to pay for my mandates? Heh. Fucking loser. I can't be held responsible for every undercapitalized business.

You didn't build that. Someone else made that happen (me, community organizer clones of me, me, me, me, etc.)

1 hour ago, william.scherk said:

For example, the diagnostic criteria for Narcissism from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals over time?  Who first identified observable trait syndromes?

Phil Coates? Phil Coates replacement wannabes?

1 hour ago, william.scherk said:

What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?  How is it diagnosed?  Is such a diagnostic entity a relict or artefact of psychological guesswork, bias, conceptual emptiness -- or other epistemic barrier to its reality in people we live with?

Once these questions are adequately answered in your mind, dear reader, would it be useful to cite a particular argument that ascribes narcissism to the President?

It certainly would.

J

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2 hours ago, william.scherk said:

What are the most useful trait criteria for a presumed  personality disorder of Narcissism? Or, what characterizes the suite of behaviours that constitute this presumed disorder?

Are these criteria appreciably different from common usage of "narcissism"? Moreover, without an operating definition, how will we avoid speaking past each other?

William,

Why... we never started speaking past each other on narcissism before. So why now? Hmmmm... We never did until I started laughing about it mocking it right now. Imagine that...

In all other times candidate--then President--Trump has been called a narcissist (and mocked for it by anti-Trumpers) right here on OL, I don't recall you asking about what that term means. Not once. Not even when I posted videos from a site about narcissism by a man helping people get out of relationships with narcissists. (I guess that guy looked like alt media, not anything respectable like CNN, huh? :evil:  )

It's funny now that the idea is laughable and tanking the good tank how you suddenly became interested in defining it...

:evil:  :) 

(You know that name's not going to stick to President Trump with the general public. It did not stick and it will not stick. You're intelligent enough to know that. Not after a bunch of mental health clowns wrote a full friggin' book about it with millions of dollars in free publicity claiming they were big shit mental health experts so they should know--and all the book did was entertain anti-Trumpers in a Jerry Springer sort of way. See here.)

Michael

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2 hours ago, Jonathan said:

They see suave, debonair Frisco giving a philosophically deep money speech, or John Galt taking over a radio presentation and addressing the audience in the manner of a professor. If they don't see that style in someone real life, then they don't see that person's intelligence and productivity that they themselves will never match, and they look down their noses at the substance and accomplishments. They're kind of living in the aesthetic trance from having read Rand's novels, and having cast themselves as being equal to her fictional heroes, despite not really having accomplished shit.

They also tend to forget what a "bad boy" Roark could be.

Jonathan,

I think you're right.

Style over substance added to delusions of grandeur and an aesthetic trance based on Rand's storytelling skills.

It's not often I read an insight like this these days. I love the term "aesthetic trance."

Thanks.

Michael

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1 hour ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Style over substance added to delusions of grandeur and an aesthetic trance based on Rand's storytelling skills.

Jonathan,

Incidentally, here is an insight right back at you. (Not competing... just sharing...)

First a small literary detour.

Here is a five-act structure that is just as old and probably more universal than Campbell's Hero's Journey. I got the from a book called Into the Woods: A Five-Act Journey Into Story by John Yorke added to a rather difficult but profound book by David Mamet called Three Uses of the Knife.

Once you know how to look for this pattern, you see it everywhere. And that is the reason it's one of the ancient patterns that are still with us.

Here is a gross outline of the way it is given in The Seven Basic Plots by Christopher Booker (which I mention because Yorke used his version as a kind of starting point):

Quote

1. Anticipation.
2. Dream.
3. Frustration.
4. Nightmare.
5. Death (of protagonist or monster).

Booker elaborates on this often through his book (as does Yorke and Mamet, although Mamet, talks about a three act structure with the second act being the equivalent of Acts 2, 3 and 4 in the others). For instance, when he talks about the plot of a normal James Bond story, he writes the states as:

Quote

1. The "Call" (or Anticipation Stage).
2. Initial success (Dream Stage).
3. Confrontation (Frustration Stage).
4. Final Ordeal (Nightmare Stage).
5. The Miraculous Escape (and Death of the Monster).

I only mention this because it's an extremely flexible pattern. (It works in Shakespeare and it works in Rand. And it goes waaaaaay back into ancient mythology.)

When applied to real life (from whence it came), I even see it in the way I went through Objectivism and the way I see most people do when they get deep into the philosophy.

1. The "Call." This is first contact with Rand's works. This tends to release a lot of dopamine and feels wonderful.

2. Initial wins. This is when a person starts winning arguments he never used to win, discovers other Objectivists, reevaluates everything he has learned through this different lens, etc. There's a lot serotonin released and even more dopamine. Life can't get any better.

3. The Reality Stage. I'm indebted to Mamet for calling the frustration stage "reality." This happens when the high of the first epiphanies and wins (Acts 1 and 2) slam up against the mundane aspects of reality that just won't go away (Act 3). If you want to be a great musician, you have to practice scales during long hours each day and that is boring. If you want to be a great engineer, you have to study math and other stuff for hours a day that is boring. If you want to become a great philosopher, you have to read tons of philosophy from obscure books each day and that is boring. It never seems to end and it's so damn slow and hard. You can't get away with gushing about stuff and instantly become an expert. You have to a lot of boring-ass donkey work during this third act. 

3-a. There's a midpoint during the third act Yorke talks about where a person has to come to grips with something he has to change inside himself, otherwise, he doesn't make it through the third act convincingly. (That's when stories seem to dip and meander.) In real life and according to my application here in O-Land, I believe this realization is an intellectual humbling. A person has to come to the conclusion that he is not Francisco D'Anconia, who never seemed to hit snags during the donkey work of developing a skill, and decide he wants to become proficient at the skill more than he hates the boredom and frustration and sheer amount of it. Only then can he can plow through the dull stuff and finish. This realization can take many different forms, but it has to be on the intensity level of a religious experience to work. Just saying you want to doesn't work. 

4. The biggest nightmare I have seen in this O-Land situation is an inner crisis of doubt--wondering whether this path will actually work out in triumph or whether there is something wrong with the person because he can't seem to get out from underneath the enormous pressure he feels to live up to the standards he imposed on himself and his constant fuck-ups. Even after he's made it through the third act, he still fucks up at times and wonders if his chance to become one of mankind's greats just slipped his grasp. The irony here is that Objectivism comes with an anti-guilt proposition, but this Act creates massive guilt in many people. Based on Randian archetypes, he doesn't believe that a hell of a lot of fucking up is the only way to eventually get it right consistently, so he feels guilty for essentially being human (and taking the only path that will get him to anywhere near to becoming a Randian hero).

5. For the final act, the person comes out of the nightmare by becoming a true-believer, or he walks away from the philosophy, or he chooses his own independent path, but takes a lot of good from Objectivism with him. (Guess which one I am? :) )

After years of online O-Land discussions, I find that most pro-Rand people are still stuck in Act 3. (Not all, of course, but many, many, many.) They're chasing the high of the first two acts and can't figure out where the joy went when they try to apply the philosophy to their day-to-day grind. So they repeat passages from Rand when they get confused, but can't go very deep into what those words mean other than the traditional boilerplate arguments. They worry a lot, though, and keep trying to square the circle of how to keep the high going. I think the irritation in this phase is one of the reasons Objectivists have a reputation as unduly snarky. They've read Rand do constant putdowns and that's about all they've got for response when challenged that makes them feel a bit better until they figure out how to push through this boring painful phase and actually become competent at something.

Anyway, food for thought.

btw - Mamet was funny in characterizing the grandiosity of feeling of the first two acts (using the 5 act division) against the reality slam of the third act where everything seems to go wrong all of a sudden. He said it's an old joke, but it's hard to remember to drain the swamp when you are out in the middle of it and up to your ass in alligators.

:) 

Michael

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1 hour ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

For instance, when he talks about the plot of a normal James Bond story, he writes the states as:

Here's the full quote by Booker if anyone is interested:

Quote

... one of the key reasons for the initial success of the Bond stories, even before they were translated to the cinema screen (increasingly modifying Fleming's original versions), was precisely the way they tapped so unerringly into those springs of the human imagination which had given rise to similar stories for thousands of years. So accurately did the typical Bond novel follow the age-old archetypal pattern that it might almost serve as a model for any Overcoming the Monster story.

    As conceived by Fleming, the basic Bond story (one or two vary the pattern slightly) unfolds through five stages rather like this:

    1. The `Call' (or Anticipation Stage): The hero, a member of the British Secret Intelligence Service, is summoned by `M, head of the service, and told of suspicious goings-on somewhere in the world which appear to pose a deadly threat to Britain, the West or mankind as a whole. Bond has been chosen to track down and confront the source of this evil, and the general mood of this opening phase is one of anticipation of the immense task to come. To prepare him for his ordeal, Bond may visit the armourer, `Q, to be equipped with special weapons, such as a new gun, a sports car fitted with a smokescreen device or a rocket pack which will enable him to fly. These are exact modern equivalents to the `magic weapons' of ancient myth, such as the sword, the `helmet of invisibility' and the winged sandals enabling him to fly with which Perseus was equipped by the gods before his journey to confront Medusa.

    2. Initial success (Dream Stage): Bond has first brushes with the `monster's' agents or even the `monster' himself, in which he is victorious (he catches Goldfinger or Drax cheating at cards or golf). There may be attacks on his life, but he survives these, and the general mood of this stage is a dream-like sense of immunity to danger, with the full horror of the monster's power and ambitions not yet in full view.

     3. Confrontation (Frustration Stage): Bond eventually penetrates the monster's lair to get closer to his enemy and then suffers his first serious setback, when he falls into the monster's clutches. But this enables him to get a full view of his sinister and repulsive opponent for the first time.2  Because the villain thinks he has Bond in his power, he reveals the full scale of his intentions, e.g., to rob Fort Knox or to drop a nuclear bomb on London. Bond's frustration at not being able to communicate this vital information back to the outside world is redoubled by knowing that the monster also has in his grip some beautiful girl or captive `Princess'.

    4. Final ordeal (Nightmare Stage): Bond is now forced by the monster to face the `terrible ordeal, which seems fiendishly designed to lead to his painful, long-drawn out death: e.g. having to endure a deadly obstacle race, crawling through a subterranean tunnel, where he has to run the gauntlet of poisonous spiders, roasting heat and finally a battle with a giant squid.

    5. The Miraculous Escape (and Death of the Monster): Bond survives the ordeal and then, by a miraculous feat of ingenuity and strength, manages in the nick of time to turn the tables, outwitting and killing the villain. He thus saves not only his own life but Fort Knox, London, mankind or whatever has been threatened with destruction. The monster is dead and Bond is free to end his adventure locked in fond embrace with the liberated `Princess.'

Believe it or not, President Trump has countless five act stories along his career. (And, no, dear anti-Trumpers, he's not the monster. :) )

Michael

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33 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Jonathan,

Incidentally, here is an insight right back at you. (Not competing... just sharing...)

First a small literary detour.

Here is a five-act structure that is just as old and probably more universal than Campbell's Hero's Journey. I got the from a book called Into the Woods: A Five-Act Journey Into Story by John Yorke added to a rather difficult but profound book by David Mamet called Three Uses of the Knife.

Once you know how to look for this pattern, you see it everywhere. And that is the reason it's one of the ancient patterns that are still with us.

Here is a gross outline of the way it is given in The Seven Basic Plots by Christopher Booker (which I mention because Yorke used his version as a kind of starting point):

Booker elaborates on this often through his book (as does Yorke and Mamet, although Mamet, talks about a three act structure with the second act being the equivalent of Acts 2, 3 and 4 in the others). For instance, when he talks about the plot of a normal James Bond story, he writes the states as:

I only mention this because it's an extremely flexible pattern. (It works in Shakespeare and it works in Rand. And it goes waaaaaay back into ancient mythology.)

When applied to real life (from whence it came), I even see it in the way I went through Objectivism and the way I see most people do when they get deep into the philosophy.

1. The "Call." This is first contact with Rand's works. This tends to release a lot of dopamine and feels wonderful.

2. Initial wins. This is when a person starts winning arguments he never used to win, discovers other Objectivists, reevaluates everything he has learned through this different lens, etc. There's a lot serotonin released and even more dopamine. Life can't get any better.

3. The Reality Stage. I'm indebted to Mamet for calling the frustration stage "reality." This happens when the high of the first epiphanies and wins (Acts 1 and 2) slam up against the mundane aspects of reality that just won't go away (Act 3). If you want to be a great musician, you have to practice scales during long hours each day and that is boring. If you want to be a great engineer, you have to study math and other stuff for hours a day that is boring. If you want to become a great philosopher, you have to read tons of philosophy from obscure books each day and that is boring. It never seems to end and it's so damn slow and hard. You can't get away with gushing about stuff and instantly become an expert. You have to a lot of boring-ass donkey work during this third act. 

3-a. There's a midpoint during the third act Yorke talks about where a person has to come to grips with something he has to change inside himself, otherwise, he doesn't make it through the third act convincingly. (That's when stories seem to dip and meander.) In real life and according to my application here in O-Land, I believe this realization is an intellectual humbling. A person has to come to the conclusion that he is not Francisco D'Anconia, who never seemed to hit snags during the donkey work of developing a skill, and decide he wants to become proficient at the skill more than he hates the boredom and frustration and sheer amount of it. Only then can he can plow through the dull stuff and finish. This realization can take many different forms, but it has to be on the intensity level of a religious experience to work. Just saying you want to doesn't work. 

4. The biggest nightmare I have seen in this O-Land situation is an inner crisis of doubt--wondering whether this path will actually work out in triumph or whether there is something wrong with the person because he can't seem to get out from underneath the enormous pressure he feels to live up to the standards he imposed on himself and his constant fuck-ups. Even after he's made it through the third act, he still fucks up at times and wonders if his chance to become one of mankind's greats just slipped his grasp. The irony here is that Objectivism comes with an anti-guilt proposition, but this Act creates massive guilt in many people. Based on Randian archetypes, he doesn't believe that a hell of a lot of fucking up is the only way to eventually get it right consistently, so he feels guilty for essentially being human (and taking the only path that will get him to anywhere near to becoming a Randian hero).

5. For the final act, the person comes out of the nightmare by becoming a true-believer, or he walks away from the philosophy, or he chooses his own independent path, but takes a lot of good from Objectivism with him. (Guess which one I am? :) )

After years of online O-Land discussions, I find that most pro-Rand people are still stuck in Act 3. (Not all, of course, but many, many, many.) They're chasing the high of the first two acts and can't figure out where the joy went when they try to apply the philosophy to their day-to-day grind. So they repeat passages from Rand when they get confused, but can't go very deep into what those words mean other than the traditional boilerplate arguments. They worry a lot, though, and keep trying to square the circle of how to keep the high going. I think the irritation in this phase is one of the reasons Objectivists have a reputation as unduly snarky. They've read Rand do constant putdowns and that's about all they've got for response when challenged that makes them feel a bit better until they figure out how to push through this boring painful phase and actually become competent at something.

Anyway, food for thought.

btw - Mamet was funny in characterizing the grandiosity of feeling of the first two acts (using the 5 act division) against the reality slam of the third act where everything seems to go wrong all of a sudden. He said it's an old joke, but it's hard to remember to drain the swamp when you are out in the middle of it and up to your ass in alligators.

:) 

Michael

Excellent!

A few whom I've seen hit level 4 and 5 run with some standard O-acceptable excuses, such as that they're "on strike," just like Frisco and Johnny and Ragnar. That phase doesn't last too long, though, since you still pretty much have to show some competence before anyone is going to believe that you walked away from success versus that you never developed the means to achieve.

A variation in the arts is that the styles that Ovishes create in are just too good for today's society. Garbage art has taken over, and real, true artistry has been abandoned. That only briefly fools a few fellow Ovishes until they're shown lots of successful realist visual artists, or songwriters who create beautiful melodies and traditional harmonic structures, or novelists and dramatists who deal in heroics and happy endings, etc.

So, yeah, um, O-kiddies, step on up to level 5, put on some bravery, set aside the excuses, realize that you're you, and maybe that means being something closer to Eddie Willers than Frisco, or a more like a random brakeman rather than a Dagny. Nutting' wrong wit dat.

Also maybe consider that Rand's belief that anyone can be great at anything they choose isn't realistic. Don't let Rand's unsupported, romanticized opinions of such things guilt you into unrealistic standards and expectations. Personally, my experience is that if a person hits level 3, and generally finds the work boring, and needs to crack the whip on himself most of the time, then he's not going to succeed in that field. It chooses you, you don't choose it. Rand could not have chosen to be a painter, or a surgeon, or an airplane pilot, and succeeded to anywhere near to what she did with writing fiction.

Anyway, thanks for the literary tie-in, MSK.

J

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