This article applies as much to the Burning Man Project with its three decades of Ministers of Propaganda, as it does to the plague of synthetic terror events that have struck the country since President Obama signed an Executive Order permitting the government to launch propaganda attacks against the American people. It is really one of the best examples of logical and critical thinking that I have come across in my life.
I was recently on the island of Jura, in the Scottish Hebrides. Eric Blair, who studied under both H.G. Wells and Aldous Huxley at the ultra-exclusive Eton prep school and the world’s oldest University, Oxford, lived there for two years on the private estate of Lord David Astor while he wrote the famous book 1984 under the pen name of George Orwell. Wells, Huxley, and Orwell have defined society for the last century…along with another key member of their clique, Aleister Crowley.
Orwell famously said “in times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act“. We are indeed living in a time of universal deceit, where propaganda is used as a tool to control large populations. We are told that truth is relative, rather than objective, and anyone questioning the official narrative is ignorant, insane, or a troll.
Until you have your “LPM moment”, you are probably a HIQI. Once you wake up, you look around and realize that everybody else is in the same trance that you were in. The natural inclination is to try to wake up those around you. Buy guns, LGBT people. Don’t expect others to keep you safe, be it government or corporations or BMOrg.
BDQ, high IQ idiocy, and the Ludek Pachman Moment (LPM)
Getting back to the real world, we still have the observable fact that some people perceive the propaganda matrix and others are oblivious to it, and we don’t have any red pills or sunglasses to explain this. Just as some people get calculus and others don’t, some people see through the bullshit and others don’t. That’s pretty clear…
Now, when it comes to calculus or other academic subjects, we have IQ; we say the higher IQ people do better at school, or at least it comes easier to them. However, the ability to see through the propaganda, bullshit generally speaking, does not seem to have much (if anything) to do with IQ. There are people with a very high IQ who are just completely helpless when it comes to seeing through the propaganda. The technical term for such a person is HIQI, or “high IQ idiot”. The term is not really as contradictory as it seems, since, properly understood, there is another kind of intelligence in play than IQ, that allows people to see through the bullshit. The technical term we shall use for this is BDQ, which stands for Bullshit Detection Quotient. The term “high IQ idiot” does not originate in this essay. A quick google search reveals prior usage here and there, but this essay may be the first to provide a formal definition of the concept:
A “high IQ idiot” is somebody with a combination of high IQ and very low BDQ.
There is an event that I recall from a book that I read a long time ago that, I think, illustrates the concept quite nicely. It’s a rather obscure book, probably out of print now, entitled “Checkmate in Prague”. The author was a chess grandmaster named Ludek Pachman. I read the book back in my teens when I was a fanatical chess player. It’s partly a memoir of the author’s chess career but is mostly a political memoir of his time in Czechoslovakia under communist rule and it culminates in his defection to the West some time in the early 1970’s.
The event I have in mind goes like this: Ludek’s housekeeper is going off to the market to buy some food. As she is going out, Ludek tells her that he would prefer that she not buy pork. You see, Ludek had read some sort of popular science article that warned of how unhealthy it was to eat pork. He was concerned that he was eating too much pork and would prefer for her to buy beef or chicken instead.
His housekeeper, surely not a very educated woman, responded: “Oh, that is all nonsense, Mr. Pachman. They are telling us that pork is unhealthy because, at the moment, there is a severe shortage of pork and they don’t want people to notice.”
Ludek took this as an example of the kinds of misguided notions that uneducated people engage in. (I don’t believe he used the term “conspiracy theory”.) For Ludek, it was completely unthinkable that scientists would write an article like that saying that pork was unhealthy if there was not some real evidence that it was.
Well, some months after this, Ludek was reading some popular science article and the article was extolling the health benefits of pork. Now, apparently, pork was by far the healthiest meat, much better for you than beef or chicken. It struck Ludek as rather odd that the scientific consensus on this could change so quickly. Ludek looked into the question and discovered that, now there was a huge oversupply of pork. It seems that the authorities had overreacted to the previous shortage and now there was more pork than anybody knew what to do with. Thus, the authorities were desperately trying to increase the demand for pork by putting out articles telling everybody how healthy it was.
Many readers might chuckle at the above story, not think that it is very consequential. After all, when you think of the various abuses committed in communist regimes, a few porkies about pork surely do not rank very high. Nonetheless, this incident really did shock poor Ludek, and was, as I recall, one of the key events that caused him to turn against the communist regime and, ultimately, to defect to the West. He just really disliked living in such a corrupt, mendacious society, in which everything was a lie. (Whether Ludek was right to assume that the West was much better is another fascinating question, but is beyond the scope of this essay.)
Now, what I would point out about this story is that Ludek almost certainly had a much higher IQ than his housekeeper. And he was also far more educated. However, his housekeeper immediately knew that these articles appearing in the press — denigrating (and later extolling) the eating of pork — were bullshit, while Ludek was taken in by them. In short, Ludek’s housekeeper had a much higher BDQ than Ludek did.
Since I feel that the foregoing anecdote is such a good basic example of a certain phenomenon, I shall introduce some new terminology. This kind of realisation that Ludek has, when he sees how naive he has been and that his uneducated housekeeper, in a very basic way, is actually smarter than he is — let us call this a Ludek Pachman moment, or LPM for short
Along these lines, I thought about another movie I saw a long time ago. It came out in 1987, a year before “They Live”. I am thinking of “Who framed Roger Rabbit?”. That was, I think, the first movie in which human actors interacted seamlessly with cartoon characters. (There were other attempts before, I’m sure, but I think that Roger Rabbit took this to a very polished level.) I think that Roger Rabbit, i.e. cartoons being superimposed on reality, can be a nice metaphor for thinking about these kinds of issues. In fact, I believe that many an LPM that people have undergone is when it dawns on them that some story that is presented by the media is an RRN, a Roger Rabbit narrative.
Though it was quite a technical achievement at the time, one thing is clear about this: everybody can identify which elements on the screen are cartoons and which ones are real. A cartoon building or a cartoon car just doesn’t look like a real building or a real car. And most certainly cartoon characters cannot be confused with a real human actor. So, again, when there is a direct visual stimulus like this, we all possess the wetware to identify effortlessly and immediately what is real and what is a cartoon, at least in a Roger Rabbit sort of movie in which cartoons and real people share the screen. So if we were watching one of those Bin Laden videos and some actual cartoon Arabs were to come out in the video, characters out of a Disney animated Aladdin or Sinbad, we would all presumably realize that the video is fake.
While nobody has any problem identifying a cartoon image, people frequently do have problems with a cartoon narrative. In May of 2011, in the first version of what happened in Abbottabad, Pakistan, a White House spokesman claims that Osama Bin Laden, when cornered, tried to use one of his wives as a “human shield”. They did later change the story, but this first version is a clear case of a cartoon element being overlaid onto something that is supposed to be a real event. My terminology for this is RRA, which stands for Roger Rabbit artifact.
Admittedly, since no photographic or video evidence was ever produced of this Abbottabad raid, it is not an RRA in the more literal sense of involving video fakery. (Video fakery is frequent in other hoax events, but not this one.) I still classify this as an RRA, since an event is alleged to occur that clearly emerges from a cartoon or Hollywoodian universe. You see, the “human shield” story requires Osama Bin Laden, who is ostensibly a real person in the real world, to exist mentally in a sort of cartoon universe. Upon realizing that agents of the U.S. government have arrived to liquidate him, he reasons that these are chivalrous individuals who would not shoot a woman. Therefore, he can prevent himself from being shot by getting behind a woman. People, let’s think about this: would anybody in the real world ever reason this way? Surely, anybody — and I mean outside of a Hollywood movie or comic book — on realizing that professional assassins are coming to kill him, would try to put as much distance between himself and his family members as possible. Putting them between him and the shooters would only get them needlessly killed as well!
Properly understood, it does not at all matter that the authorities later denied the human shield story. It really doesn’t, because, you see, once you identify an RRA in the narrative, even if it is later amended, you know the whole thing must be fake. This is because there is really no way that an RRA can just slip into a real event. No, there must be actual fiction writers involved! And that means that the event really must be a hoax. Why would you hire Hollywood scriptwriters, say, to write a script for something that really happened? Also, professional writers don’t write that fast. They have to have had the script written before the event (allegedly) happened!
When the story contains what is clearly an RRA, and then no actual evidence is ever provided that any of this happened, we can say that the event must be some sort of hoax. (To be clear, I don’t mean to say that nothing happened. Some operation of some sort occurred and possibly somebody was killed. Something happened but we have no way of knowing what it was! We do know, however, that whatever they say happened is not what happened!) I hereby propose a basic principle of detecting official bullshit:
If there is a single RRA in an official account, then the whole thing is an RRN.
The most important thing to understand about the CT concept is that it is utterly meaningless. This becomes quite obvious when you ask people for proof of whatever official, Roger Rabbit narrative they are espousing. For example, if you simply ask people to provide proof of the government story of 9/11, without suggesting any alternative theory yourself, you will pretty much invariably be called a “conspiracy theorist” even though you have yourself offered no theory! On reflection, the whole thing is really very odd, because the government story would seem to be a “conspiracy theory”, as it is a theory and it does involve conspirators conspiring. So they propose a conspiracy theory, you request proof of that theory, and they respond to your request by saying that you are a conspiracy theorist!
It is as if, when you say that you don’t believe the stories in the Bible, people were to respond by accusing you of being a religious fanatic!
Eventually, one comes to the understanding that a CT is just any avenue of investigation that the authorities want to discourage you from exploring! And this is the case even if no conspiracy was posited. Or even any theory at all! At various times, I have heard people refer to the proposal that the Federal Reserve should be independently audited as a “conspiracy theory”. I recall Donald Rumsfeld saying that the belief that the Iraq war had something to do with oil (as opposed to the U.S. government’s official explanation, the non-existent WMD’s) was a “conspiracy theory”!
Calling something a CT is simply an illegitimate way of trying to shut down a conversation and it may well be that the most important cultural/intellectual divide in our current day world is between those who realize that and those who don’t. Finally, the only way to deal with this “you’re a conspiracy theorist nya nya” sort of thing must be something analogous to Godwin’s law. I guess I could immodestly propose that this be called “Revusky’s law”:
Anybody who starts with this vacuous nonsense about “conspiracy theories” and/or calls you a “conspiracy theorist” has thereby conceded the debate.
When the HIQI professes his belief in whatever Roger Rabbit narrative, it is up to him to tell you what the proof is for the story. Simply calling you a name, in particular a name that is meaningless anyway, does not cut it.
We concur. Revusky’s Law it is.
Read the whole article at Unz.com
Some terms and ideas here that may be useful in our discussions going forward, as we consider the prospect that Burners are Silicon Valley’s Secret Weapon.
Happy solstice honey moon from Paris. They say the last time this happened was 70 years ago, and the next one in 74 years time. If ever there was a day to wake up, today is a gr81.