Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Leftist false gospel of self-esteem

"Blessed are the meek" certainly does not get a mention

One of the big pieces of the psychobabble industry is the promotion of "self esteem" at the expense of self control and personal responsibility. But, contrary to popular myth, self esteem is not the holy grail of psychological health. In fact, it is not necessarily even good for you, and most bullies, tyrants and other dysfunctional people fairly ooze self esteem.

Most people confuse "self-esteem" with a "sense of self". It is the latter--not the former, that is so often screwed up in the angry, violent, grandiose, and generally narcissistic people in the world. If you have a healthy "sense of self", you are likely to have a healthy self-esteem; and a healthy self-esteem is not the same at all as a high self-esteem.

The psychological defect that leads to so many problems for people in their lives is a defective or distorted sense of one's SELF. The excessive self-esteem you see in a bully comes from a distortion of reality that person develops with regard to their self. It used to be widely believed that low self-esteem was a cause of violence, but in reality, violent individuals, groups and nations happen to think very well of themselves. Do you really suppose that individuals like Ahmadinejad or the Iranian mullahs suffer from poor self-esteem? Do you think bullies like Saddam or thugs like Zawahiri had "fragile" egos as they made their way through life? And that they were simply misunderstood or had unhappy childhoods and that is what made them so bad? If only social conditions be improved and poverty eliminated then the world would not see the development of such people--or so goes the thinking, anyway.

I'm afraid not. The reality is that human nature is what it is whether you are rich or poor; or what color your skin happens to be; and without regard for the particular political structure you live in. Exaggerated self-esteem that is not based on personal achievement or responsibility is one of the hallmarks of a pathological narcissist or psychopath.

The pop-psychology that promulgated the widespread belief that if you nurture kid's self-esteem neglected to mention that if the sense of self was already damaged, all the social engineers would manage to do was to create a narcissistic monster. That is why our society is filled with the pursuit of unhealthy narcissistic gratification. In this new century, that narcissism seems to be morphing into an even more malignant sociopathy that pervades society and impacts almost all our social, political, and educational institutions.

Our cultural focus on enhancing "self-esteem" has resulted in the near-worship of emotions and feelings at the expense of reason and thought; on emphasizing "root causes" and victimhood, instead of demanding that behavior be civilized and that individuals exert self-discipline and self-control--no matter what they are "feeling".

Source. See also here. The Christian teaching is here: Matthew 5:3-5; 18:4; 23:8-12.



The paradox of moral equivalence: "I used to believe that the world essentially divided into two types of people: those who were broadly tolerant, and those who felt threatened by differences. If only the former ruled the earth, I reasoned, the world might know some measure of peace. But there was a problem with my theory, and it was never clearer than in a conversation I had with a Pakistani friend who told me that he loathed people like George Bush who insisted on dividing the world into "us" and "them". My friend did not realise that he was in fact falling straight into the camp of people he loathed. This is a political version of a famous paradox formulated by Bertrand Russell. The stronger you insist on the necessity of tolerance, the more intolerant you become toward those who disagree. The moral lesson is that there is no such thing as unqualified tolerance; ultimately, one must be able to expound intolerance of certain ideologies without surrendering the moral high ground normally linked to tolerance."

French revolution? "Unveiling his domestic reform agenda in Paris Tuesday, Nicolas Sarkozy called for "a new social contract" for France. His proposed revision of French socialist tradition going back to Jean-Jacques Rousseau is nothing short of revolutionary. His ability to deliver will make or break his presidency. True to character, Mr. Sarkozy came out swinging. The new President declared that France's generous welfare state is "unjust" and "financially untenable," "discourages work and job creation," and "fails to bring equal opportunity." The result: France's jobless rate is the euro zone's highest. The President wants "a new social contract founded on work, merit and equal opportunity." He promised to loosen restrictions on working hours and toughen up requirements for jobless benefits, to ease hiring and firing rules and reduce incentives to retire early".

The usual military equipment bungling: "After six years at war, some Army National Guard units are still struggling with less than half the equipment they need to do their jobs at home, the top Guard general said Wednesday. He said it will take an extra $13 billion over the next five years to get them 90 percent of the gear they need. Lt. Gen. H. Steven Blum, chief of the National Guard, said that while Guard units heading to Iraq and Afghanistan have all the necessary equipment, all units at home are short at least 30 percent of the equipment they need."

Senate rejects measure attempting to regulate length of combat tours in Iraq: " Democrats' efforts to challenge President Bush's Iraq policies were dealt a demoralizing blow Wednesday in the Senate after they failed to scrape together enough support to guarantee troops more time at home. The 56-44 vote - four short of reaching the 60 needed to advance - all but assured that Democrats would be unable to muster the support needed to pass tough anti-war legislation by year's end. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., was seen as the Democrats' best shot because of its pro-military premise".

Wes Clark: Petraeus told the truth: "Gen. Wes Clark was asked by Matt Stoller, a lefty blogger, about MoveOn's Betray Us ad. Clark said it was a big mistake. Clark also said Gen. Dave Petraeus told the truth. The ad was a big mistake, Clark said, "because it distracted attention from focusing on the failures of the policy and let the other side play a game of personal attack again and you know sort of outrage at that. That's a mistake. It distracted us from the dialogue we needed." Later, Clark said: "I'd say it was a mistake tactically. But I also, I know Dave Petraeus, and he's not gonna say something he thinks is incorrect, he's not gonna lie... Gen. Clark is the left's military man. Lefties might want to listen to him."

Victimhood: "In the quasi-religious cult of victimhood that is part of today's leftist dogma, "victimhood" has been identified as the key quality deserving of attention and pity. This is in part because many on the political left have an intense narcissistic need to see themselves as "champions of the oppressed", hence the constant need to find and maintain an oppressed class of people to champion. But it also dovetails nicely into the the Marxist dialectic that underlies that ideology. The world is divided up into two groups, you see: the oppressors (i.e., white, male,heterosexual, Republican, Americans or Israelis) and the oppressed (everyone else)."


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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


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