Saturday, May 27, 2017

A High Functioning Gamma Explains High School Popularity

An interesting essay from a Gen-Xer , who almost gets it but then at the last minute sheers away from facing the truth.

I know a lot of people who were nerds in school, and they all tell the same story: there is a strong correlation between being smart and being a nerd, and an even stronger inverse correlation between being a nerd and being popular. Being smart seems to make you unpopular.

Typical Gamma view. But let's see where he goes with it.

Why? To someone in school now, that may seem an odd question to ask. The mere fact is so overwhelming that it may seem strange to imagine that it could be any other way. But it could. Being smart doesn't make you an outcast in elementary school. Nor does it harm you in the real world. Nor, as far as I can tell, is the problem so bad in most other countries. But in a typical American secondary school, being smart is likely to make your life difficult. Why?

Okay here he is being out of touch. He clearly and obviously never went to high school in Japan for an outstanding example.  Bottom line it is the same everywhere.  Moving on...

The key to this mystery is to rephrase the question slightly. Why don't smart kids make themselves popular? If they're so smart, why don't they figure out how popularity works and beat the system, just as they do for standardized tests?

Now this is actually a good question. He gets the answer wrong but his question is a good start.

One argument says that this would be impossible, that the smart kids are unpopular because the other kids envy them for being smart, and nothing they could do could make them popular. I wish. If the other kids in junior high school envied me, they did a great job of concealing it. And in any case, if being smart were really an enviable quality, the girls would have broken ranks. The guys that guys envy, girls like.

This is why I say the guy is a high functioning Gamma.   He knows the answer isn't envy.

 Scalzi for an outstanding example still puts everything in terms of envy. Anyone who dislikes him must secretly envy him. For the Gamma male high school never ends.

In the schools I went to, being smart just didn't matter much. Kids didn't admire it or despise it. All other things being equal, they would have preferred to be on the smart side of average rather than the dumb side, but intelligence counted far less than, say, physical appearance, charisma, or athletic ability.

So if intelligence in itself is not a factor in popularity, why are smart kids so consistently unpopular? The answer, I think, is that they don't really want to be popular.

Here, he almost gets it.

If someone had told me that at the time, I would have laughed at him. Being unpopular in school makes kids miserable, some of them so miserable that they commit suicide. Telling me that I didn't want to be popular would have seemed like telling someone dying of thirst in a desert that he didn't want a glass of water. Of course I wanted to be popular.

But in fact I didn't, not enough. There was something else I wanted more: to be smart. Not simply to do well in school, though that counted for something, but to design beautiful rockets, or to write well, or to understand how to program computers. In general, to make great things.

At the time I never tried to separate my wants and weigh them against one another. If I had, I would have seen that being smart was more important. If someone had offered me the chance to be the most popular kid in school, but only at the price of being of average intelligence (humor me here), I wouldn't have taken it.

Much as they suffer from their unpopularity, I don't think many nerds would. To them the thought of average intelligence is unbearable. But most kids would take that deal. For half of them, it would be a step up. Even for someone in the eightieth percentile (assuming, as everyone seemed to then, that intelligence is a scalar), who wouldn't drop thirty points in exchange for being loved and admired by everyone?

And that, I think, is the root of the problem. Nerds serve two masters. They want to be popular, certainly, but they want even more to be smart. And popularity is not something you can do in your spare time, not in the fiercely competitive environment of an American secondary school.

At this point, he digresses for a bit while betraying his ignorance about life in other countries' school systems. The next few paragraphs are edited out....

For example, teenage kids pay a great deal of attention to clothes. They don't consciously dress to be popular. They dress to look good. But to who? To the other kids. Other kids' opinions become their definition of right, not just for clothes, but for almost everything they do, right down to the way they walk. And so every effort they make to do things "right" is also, consciously or not, an effort to be more popular.

Nerds don't realize this. They don't realize that it takes work to be popular. In general, people outside some very demanding field don't realize the extent to which success depends on constant (though often unconscious) effort. For example, most people seem to consider the ability to draw as some kind of innate quality, like being tall. In fact, most people who "can draw" like drawing, and have spent many hours doing it; that's why they're good at it. Likewise, popular isn't just something you are or you aren't, but something you make yourself.

These last two paragraphs, he gets it right but in the next two he gets it wrong.

The main reason nerds are unpopular is that they have other things to think about. Their attention is drawn to books or the natural world, not fashions and parties. They're like someone trying to play soccer while balancing a glass of water on his head. Other players who can focus their whole attention on the game beat them effortlessly, and wonder why they seem so incapable.

The secret king who only uses his mind to contemplate higher things is now making his presence felt.  What nerds cared about deeply in those days was Star Trek, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings plus Dungeons and Dragons.  Nerds had their own hierarchy about these things with the Sci Fi fans looking down on Fantasy fans.

Sure nerds are planning ahead to college but so are the kids at the top of the popularity ladder.  

Even if nerds cared as much as other kids about popularity, being popular would be more work for them. The popular kids learned to be popular, and to want to be popular, the same way the nerds learned to be smart, and to want to be smart: from their parents. While the nerds were being trained to get the right answers, the popular kids were being trained to please.

Edited for further digression on his part....

Because I didn't fit into this world, I thought that something must be wrong with me. I didn't realize that the reason we nerds didn't fit in was that in some ways we were a step ahead. We were already thinking about the kind of things that matter in the real world, instead of spending all our time playing an exacting but mostly pointless game like the others.

The secret king has arrived in earnest. Nerds are unpopular because they are secretly superior. 

I was recently on Mackinac Island. For those of you who don't know, there are no cars allowed on that island.  If you want to get somewhere you go either by bicycle or horse.  It makes it a popular with some branches of the Amish.  And while I was there a group of kids clearly on the start of their  rumspringa.  Bikes are kind of reserved for adults if the Amish group in question rides them at all.  The social stratification on display was just as familiar as it was obvious.  The male at the front was clearly used to riding a bike already, he was handsome, smiling, laughing and carefree.  He was constantly popping wheelies for the fun of it.  The Amish girls fluttered around him cooing like doves.

The male at the back of the group was a cringe inducing figure. Stringy, gawky, thick glasses and a hair cut that must have literally required the use of a bowl.  His hair just screamed, Mom Haircut.  The coordination required to ride  a bike was utterly beyond him.  He could barley manage to get one foot on a pedal at a time as he would try to push the bike forward and get both feet on the pedals.  He thrashed the handlebars repeatedly over correcting in his futile attempt to find balance on this machine that he had clearly never been allowed to touch before.  He fell over and landed in a pile horse shit.   His humiliation was steaming off of him in the morning sun. 

The sad truth is that most of the kids who are easily identifiable as Gammas have one thing in common, high functioning autism.  It wasn't that they had more intelligent things to occupy their mighty brains.  It was because they didn't have a choice.

Know yourself, then seek improvement.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Convergence Comes to La La Land

The fuck did you expect?

Yang described a conversation he had recently with a casting executive at “one of the studios” in Hollywood. Yang wanted to know if the person cared how many Instagram followers someone had before hiring them. In our social media age, having a large cyber following can be attractive to some employers.

“I do check the Instagrams to see if there’s anything weird, if they get drunk every day or if they’re a Trump supporter,” Yang recalls her saying. “Then, I don’t know. I would have a hard time…”

“That’s messed up, though,” Yang says about her confession. “Aren’t you being a bigot in a way?”

Tim Allen's Last Man Standing was just sent to the Land of Eternal Reruns and it was the third highest rated show on ABC.  Now these days ratings don't mean as much as they used to and costs need to be controlled. But if you think for a second politics didn't enter into ABC's decision you are high on something that is drastically more powerful than is generally available in Hollywood.

Showbiz has always been Lefty as hell.  And I do mean always.  There was a reason the Romans wouldn't allow actors to vote.  The kind of creativity required to be an actor tends toward a mindset that is given to malignant narcissism.  It's nearly a job requirement, you have to be aware of how you look 24/7.  

In the days of the Moguls, Hollywood was sort of politically balanced.  The talent was Left wing, the bosses were Right wing. That they spent most of their time bumping heads is a fact that is well known.

However both sides routinely buried the hatchet whenever something came along to threaten their industry.  

The Communists that they embrace as martyrs today, were outliers at the time. The regular Hollywood was just as happy to purge them, as the Moguls.

But of course they didn't stay purged.  The Hollywood Ten was routinely getting work under the table all the while they were black listened.   The real horror so far as they were concerned was that they couldn't use their own names.  And on the off chance you were wondering.  Yes, they were in fact all Communists.

None the less for a while there was a certain political balance that worked in the industry's favor. The actors union would run interference with the Left and the Moguls would do the same for the Right.

That all started to change in the late sixties and early seventies when the Baby Moguls started taking the reins away from dad.  The Baby Moguls were all good solid Lefties themselves and were anxious to prove it.

The political Right was unusually powerless during this period, so there was no threat from that quarter.  The film industry began indulging itself. The American Left wing acting community began to worship British actors who were openly avowed Communists.  Vanessa Redgrave comes irresistibly to mind.  This is a woman who found her father in bed with her husband.   None the less she was lionized by the likes of Jane Fonda.

If you were on the Right, this was the period where you first learned it was a good idea to keep your mouth shut.

When the eighties came along the Right wing was resurgent politically and probably strong enough to damage the film industry.  However in 1980 a long term investment by Lew Wasserman paid off, when Ronald Reagan was elected president.  Reagan was not one to forget about outstanding debts that had to be paid.  Any talk of seriously censuring Hollywood for it's excesses, quietly died.

Right wing actors at this time found themselves walled in to the action ghetto of the 1980s.  However it was well paying ghetto and none of them seemed to mind all that much.  In fact it seemed to give the roles they played a certain amount of legitimacy.

The new rules were, so long as you can still put money paying asses on seats everything else could be over looked provided you weren't too in your face about it.  And yes you could easily go too far.  Charleton Heston was a pariah towards the end.

However SJWism has now arrived in LaLa Land.  Bad business decisions are being made in the name of SJW approved politics.  ABC's giving  the highly rated Last Man Standing the boot, after having green lit a second season of that ratings crater, Agent Carter, demonstrates the kind of thinking that is now starting to infect the American film industry.   And the twitter stasi are referring to the likes of  Adam Baldwin as "the one that was on Firefly that I don't like anymore".

SJW converged businesses always inevitably liquidate.

Honestly, it's as well that that gold plated house of cards will finally collapse.  Although it could easily be sped along if the GOP passed Glen Reynolds 20% tax on entertainment venues.

Good luck getting Ryan to uncuck long enough to go along with that.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

ISIS: Who Are You Tell Us We Are not True Muslims


From Dabiq magazine (their official propaganda organ and always a rib tickling read. If you are into extracting someone's ribs before tickling them.

"Many Westerners, however, are already aware that claiming the attacks of the mujahidin to be senseless and questioning incessantly as to why we hate the West and why we fight them is nothing more than a political act and a propaganda tool,” the article says. “The politicians will say it regardless of how much it stands in opposition to facts and common sense just to garner as many votes as they can for the next election cycle.”

There it is in black and white.  We are doing these things because we hate you and want to kill you.  Why is this so hard to understand?

It must be incredibly frustrating as an Islamic terrorist not to have your views and motives taken seriously by the societies you terrorize, even after you have explicitly and repeatedly stated them. Even worse, those on the regressive left, in their endless capacity for masochism and self-loathing, have attempted to shift blame inwardly on themselves, denying the terrorists even the satisfaction of claiming responsibility.

It's like a bad Monty Python sketch:

"We did this because our holy texts exhort us to to do it."

"No you didn't."

"Wait, what? Yes we did..."

"No, this has nothing to do with religion. You guys are just using religion as a front for social and geopolitical reasons."

"WHAT!? Did you even read our official statement? We give explicit Quranic justification. This is jihad, a holy crusade against pagans, blasphemers, and disbelievers."

"No, this is definitely not a Muslim thing. You guys are not true Muslims, and you defame a great religion by saying so."

"Huh!? Who are you to tell us we're not true Muslims!? Islam is literally at the core of everything we do, and we have implemented the truest most literal and honest interpretation of its founding texts. It is our very reason for being."

"Nope. We created you. We installed a social and economic system that alienates and disenfranchises you, and that's why you did this. We're sorry."

"What? Why are you apologizing? We just slaughtered you mercilessly in the streets. We targeted unwitting civilians - disenfranchisement doesn't even enter into it!"

"Listen, it's our fault. We don't blame you for feeling unwelcome and lashing out."

"Seriously, stop taking credit for this! We worked really hard to pull this off, and we're not going to let you take it away from us."

"No, we nourished your extremism. We accept full blame."

"OMG, how many people do we have to kill around here to finally get our message across

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Oh Please Glod NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooo!!!!!

Well this is going to suck.

Having paid loving tribute to the 1980s of my comparative youth. Netflix has of course decided to soil one my more beloved memories of that decade...Probably forever.

I note with considerable sourness that the Netflix pagew for this still reads The Dark Crystal: Age of Rebellion.

The Born Losers

From person experience I can tell you that president Trump couldn't be more right about the Jihadis. Losers they were born. Losers they lived and Losers they shall die.

Scott Adams explains:

President Trump just gave ISIS its new name: Losers. (Short for Evil Losers).

If you think that’s no big deal, you’re wrong. It’s a big deal. This is – literally – weapons-grade persuasion from the most powerful Master Persuader of our time.

As I have taught you in this blog, President Trump’s clever nicknames for people are not random. They are deeply engineered for visual impact and future confirmation bias.

In this case, the visuals will be provided by future terror attacks. That reinforces the “evil” part, obviously. But more importantly, the Losers will be doing nothing but losing on the battlefield from now until “annihilation.” They are surrounded, and the clock is ticking. Oh, and the press isn’t allowed to watch the final battles. In other words, we won’t need to build new holding cells on Guantanamo Bay this time. No press means no prisoners, if you know what I mean. (American soldiers won’t be shooting the prisoners. We have allies for that sort of thing.)

As you know, “annihilation” of the Losers in Loserdom won’t stop the loser’s ideas from spreading. You still have to kill the ideas. And that takes persuasion, not bullets. President Trump just mapped out the persuasion solution: Evil Losers.

Quickly, name one other way you could label/insult the Losers that would be as powerful as the word Loser. You can’t do it with any other name or insult that is also repeatable in polite company.

What kinds of people join the Losers? Mostly young males. And you know what brand young males do not want on them? Right: Losers.

If you call them monsters, they like it. If you call them ISIS or ISIL they put it on a flag and wave it around. If you call them non-Muslim, it just rolls off their backs because they have Korans and stuff. Almost any other “brand” you can imagine is either inert or beneficial to Loser recruitment.

Loser is different. No one joins the Loser movement. Try at home, with your family or friends, to concoct a more effective brand poisoning than Loser. You probably can’t. Remember, your brand has to fit with future confirmation evidence. The Losers on the battlefield will continue to be losing, so the brand is engineered to get stickier over time. Your alternative idea for a brand solution has to have that quality of future confirmation too. Good luck finding a better persuasion brand.

This is not accidental. President Trump does (laugh if you will) have the best words, at least for this sort of thing. He’s proven it over and over. Just ask Jeb, Ted, and HIllary.

This attack was a last ditch effort on the part of the Caliphate. They are desperate to go war with "Rome."

The God Emporero has set yet another nail in their coffin.

Everything is Fine in Britain