There are perceptions … but there are also time-honoured, extrinsic realities

In one of the best Morse episodes – Death of the Self – con-artist Russell Clarke [Michael Kitchen] diddles rich customers in Italy with the help of his ex-jailbird lassie Maureen [Jane Snowden] by telling them they must deconstruct and throw away their old perceptions, all the old realities, all the interrelationships – in short, one must kill off the old self and then start a new one.

Given Clarke’s record back in Blighty, where people hanged themselves and all sorts of thing happened, Morse, given his grip on reality, is going to expose this charlatan and appears to be obsessed in doing so. Actually, the real game behind it turns out to be shifting forged artworks.

In the end, it’s a fortuitous afterthought which exposes the scam and as Clarke is led away, he says: “It must be difficult living with your degree of suspicion, Morse.” He might well have said it must be difficult living with Morse’s grasp of reality.

In the political arena, many see the game as being between Statists and those anti-State control. In the world of religion or metaphysics in general, even philosophy, the opposed sides are those trying to deconstruct reality with this openhanded “have you ever considered that all reality is relative” and the other side holding onto fixed realities which they know to be true.

The relativists v the realists.

The former try to prise these realities away from the believer using every stratagem – sophistry, philosophy, the eastern mystics – every tool possible, clever diatribes at Zero Hedge, for example [H/T Rossa] – but those with a quite robust sense of what is real and what is not ain’t buying.

There are external verities in our eyes, there are external texts which refer to that, e.g. “love thy neighbour”, don’t divorce your wife except for adultery and so on.

Those rules serve well and a society more or less observing them functions well. “Well” is defined as “in reasonable safety and with a certain well-being, give or take”.

Which is not to say that everything in such an article is wrong, quite the opposite. The only way the PCists can deconstruct reality though and set up a brand new reality – as the Marxists did – is to be plausible and the only way to be plausible is to tell at least some truths in one context but it’s in the juxtaposition of those truths that the real naughtiness lies – “the devil’s in the details”.

The writer mentions an agreed, shared perception being reality.

Oh how clever.

It denies anything extrinsic exists and once you have people accepting that only perception is reality, the vista is wide and fertile before such programmers. There’s a field day for the neuro-linguists. The very lexicon can be redefined and people’s idea of what words even mean can alter.

Therefore, a PCist’s version of what Equality means – in reality discrimination against another section of society – is different to what many of us believe it means – that people are of equal value, though that comes through in different forms and in different roles, in different ways. Different but of equal value.

The writer writes of cognitive dissonance. He suggests that the cognitive dissonance stems from the accepted realities.

Bollox. I’d suggest it stems from the newly introduced doubts about accepted realities.

Minette Marin wrote on this in 2002 when she mentioned women suddenly discovering, after a Cosmo magazine article on the topic, that they had, in fact, been raped all those years ago. Similarly, men are told that all women are after is their money. Very difficult to expunge that from the mind once it’s in there. It always hovers in the background.

And the reason it’s so virulent is that the idea always starts with observations of behaviours and phenomena most people would accept and then extrapolates, reinterprets them. The devil’s right in there, in that extrapolation and reinterpretation.

It’s like asking someone don’t they believe in freedom because you are offering a way for them to be free – let the State take over all those pesky little matters of life and that leaves you free to masticate and fornicate but no time to cogitate. It’s not my definition of freedom.

The wider game – I hesitate to call it the greater game – known by its exponents as The Great Work of Ages – is all about deconstructing people’s systems which worked by now saying they don’t work and using exceptions to prove the truth of that, then replacing them with new, contrived realities, a new Narrative in fact – a faux Narrative which can only be maintained at enormous cost but heh – what’s cost, say the exponents?

Briefly applying a biblical colour to this, there was much talk of false prophets, such that the very elect are deceived. The fact is that there are many charlatans out there and the only way they can con you is to first chime in with your grievance, then deconstruct what you believe, sell you a different reality and construct a new values system – theirs.

This can be as simple as a salesman selling double-glazing.

No thanks, I believe there are extrinsic realities, e.g. you don’t murder, you don’t lie and I need no other narrative to tell me that. Same with freedom – I know what it is, what it means and OoL is one site fighting for that. It’s known by many as classical liberalism, it can be seen as libertarianism for the most part. We need no new realities to understand those principles quite clearly, whatever differing directions our belief systems subsequently take us, you and me.

3 comments for “There are perceptions … but there are also time-honoured, extrinsic realities

  1. July 15, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    Thank you, James.

  2. Rightwinggit
    July 15, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    “It must be difficult living with your degree of suspicion”

    My favourite rejoinder is; “I’m never disappointed”

    • July 15, 2014 at 9:04 pm

      Ah, a pessimist? That is still largely my motto! 😉

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