Saturday, May 12, 2018

Ayn Rand on Rationalization

"Men do not accept a catch phrase by a process of thought, they seize upon a catch phrase—any catch phrase—because it fits their emotions. Such men do not judge the truth of a statement by its correspondence to reality—they judge reality by its correspondence to their feelings.

If, in the course of philosophical detection, you find yourself, at times, stopped by the indignantly bewildered question: “How could anyone arrive at such nonsense?”—you will begin to understand it when you discover that evil philosophies are systems of rationalization.

...When a theory achieves nothing but the opposite of its alleged goals, yet its advocates remain undeterred, you may be certain that it is not a conviction or an “ideal,” but a rationalization."

-Ayn Rand

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Paycheck to Paycheck

According to CNBC, 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and 10% of people who make more than $100,000 yearly struggle to make ends meet

As a missionary, I witnessed many missionaries who I described as living "p-day to p-day" missionary work was drudgery unto them, and P-day was the only beacon of hope that kept them going. If missionary work would be particularly hard one week, they would burnout, and would crash, leading to petty-disobediences like sleeping in, dragging feet going out, hanging out at members, etc. These petty disobediences fail to adequately energize; a disobedience, to properly energize, must be deliberate (Rev 3:16). Say to your companion "I'm tired, lets take a break for one hour to just unwind at X member's house." This will give you very different spiritual results from saying "lets go to X members house for an active member lesson" when both of you know you will be there for hours and no lesson would be taught. 

The problem is that for many missionaries the day-to-day activities were more emotionally costly than they could afford. Its important to recognize when you are in a state of burn, and to switch gears to be able to make it over the hills. Switching gears doesn't have to mean disobedience; but one should work to save energy so that when horrible uphills hit, it doesn't zero you out. Here are principles to practice:

-Exercise to stay in shape, emotionally and physically and mentally. To continue the bike analogy, hills will always hit. Gears will help, but gears will help more if you're fit in the first place.
-Shift your stance to make your load more bearable. Lift with your back or with your legs. As a missionary: Lift with your sense of humor, lift with your charity. Whatever muscle is strong for you. Your inner self knows, you just need to let it drive. Some missionary's strongest muscle is their work-drive, but other missionaries are play focused and if they see work as drudgery they won't be able to keep up a high pace. They will need many breaks, losing efficiency. The best for such would be to see missionary work as play, so that they are lifting with their strongest muscle.
-Shift gears when hitting hills. Maybe the aforementioned missionary will hit an investigator who has no sense of play whatsoever. If the missionary expects play from them, they will be drained. The missionary must, in this instance, lift with a different muscle.
-Pace yourself. Relax. Don't make things more work than they are, especially in your mind. Dread increases weight and resistance.
-Save up. Carry a little bit of P-day with you, via memories, attitudes, learnings, etc.  I always was on the lookout for fun memories to write home about, and that helped it feel like I was having fun. 
-Learn to recognize burn. This single skill will allow you to address the situation in a mature way, rather than drift into the mire via petty thefts and disobediences.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

The Cult of the UPS

I just the other day applied for a job at U.P.S, and I thought that it would be great! I would do work, earn money, and make a living. I went eagerly in the interview, when I was shocked find UPS is a CULT! The BITE model illuminated my path, and I was able to escape without taking the job. Now I'm unemployed, but I am free. Tell your friends! Let them know that the united parcel service is a cult! Do you know any friends and family trapped in the UPS? Share the BITE model with them!

Behavior Control

1. Regulate individual’s physical reality - UPS workers must be located only where the UPS store is.

2. Dictate where, how, and with whom the member lives and associates or isolates - UPS workers must associate with UPS customers and coworkers (which reinforces the groupthink cult environment)

3. When, how and with whom the member has sex - You can't even have sex on the job! How totalitarian can you get!

4. Control types of clothing and hairstyles - UPS employees must wear UPS uniform. UPS members cannot even have facial hair or wear things that don't match UPS colors!

5. Regulate diet - food and drink, hunger and/or fasting -You can only eat at certain times. The give advice on what foods to use at work (sandwhiches and sugar for energy) and everything!

6. Manipulation and deprivation of sleep - UPS employees can have to wake up very early in the morning.

7. Financial exploitation, manipulation or dependence - UPS employees are forced to rely on UPS for money.

8. Restrict leisure, entertainment, vacation time - UPS employees can only take scheduled breaks!

9. Major time spent with group indoctrination and rituals and/or self indoctrination including the Internet - UPS regularly gives "training" (indoctrination) courses to its employees

10. Permission required for major decisions - you have a manager over you, and that manager has a manager over then, and you have to report anomalities to them!

11. Thoughts, feelings, and activities (of self and others) reported to superiors - a log is kept of your day to day activities which you give to the manager over you.

12. Rewards and punishments used to modify behaviors, both positive and negative - A bonus is given for working every day of the week; the threat of being fired constantly looms.

13. Discourage individualism, encourage group-think - see everything above

14. Impose rigid rules and regulations - see everything above

15. Instill dependency and obedience - " "

16. Threaten harm to family and friends - the threat of unemployment. "Without us, who will feed your family?". Its all about control.

18. Instill dependency and obedience - " "

Information Control

1. Deception: -UPS employees kept in the dark about UPS' financial holdings

2. Minimize or discourage access to non-cult sources of information -You can't use a cell phone or computer on the job!

3. Compartmentalize information into Outsider vs. Insider doctrines -Managers are priveledged with more access and information than peons

4. Encourage spying on other members - employees are encouraged to report other employees violating "the rules" and there are even rewards for doing so

5. Extensive use of cult-generated information and propaganda - There is all kinds of pro-UPS propeganda on the wall, designed to make you feel like you're a part of the UPS "family"

6. Unethical use of confession - they can withhold raises or punish you if you admit to doing things wrong, and they can use it against you in the future!

Thought Control

1. Require members to internalize the group’s doctrine as truth

2.Change person’s name and identity - You're a UPSer now!

3. Use of loaded language and clich├ęs which constrict knowledge, stop critical thoughts and reduce complexities into platitudinous buzz words - all kinds of buzzwords and shortcuts are used in the propefanda and safety literature. "Never back, keep on track" for drivers, etc

4. Encourage only ‘good and proper’ thoughts - being depressed or performing poorly could lead to discipline!

5. Hypnotic techniques are used to alter mental states, undermine critical thinking and even to age regress the member -see propeganda

7. Teaching thought-stopping techniques which shut down reality testing by stopping negative thoughts and allowing only positive thoughts -I didn't see this, but I bet they do.

8. Rejection of rational analysis, critical thinking, constructive criticism -"we don't pay you to think!"

9. Forbid critical questions about leader, doctrine, or policy allowed - Check

10. Labeling alternative belief systems as illegitimate, evil, or not useful - Check

Emotional Control

1. Manipulate and narrow the range of feelings – some emotions and/or needs are deemed as evil, wrong or selfish - if you spend all day whining every day, you could be fired!

3. Make the person feel that problems are always their own fault, never the leader’s or the group’s fault - Check

5. Instill fear, such as fear of:

a. Thinking independently - Oh yes, you can't talk back to your boss and expect things to go well.

b. The outside world - We watched a video the first day about how dogs would chase and bite you.

c. Enemies

d. Losing one’s salvation (job) - check

e. Leaving or being shunned by the group -check

f. Other’s disapproval -check

6. Extremes of emotional highs and lows – love bombing and praise one moment and then declaring you are horrible sinner -praises/promotions/discipline/firing

8. Phobia indoctrination: inculcating irrational fears about leaving the group or questioning the leader’s authority - Again, holding a person's welfare above their head to keep them complicit is part and parcel for the UPS.

So that's like a 95% match. Which is more I think than even the LDS church.

Ever since Fred W Anson and other enlightened individuals shared the BITE model with me, I've been able to successfully evacuate a wide range of cults, including work, church, the military, the United States Government, my family, Facebook, my own mind, eating out, my sofa, Star Wars, and the internet. I spend all day doing nothing and believing nothing, but at least I am free.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Ayn Rand On Living Deliberately

"To the extent to which a man is mentally active, i.e., motivated by the desire to know, to understand, his mind works as the programmer of his emotional computer-and his sense of life develops into a bright counterpart of a rational philosophy. To the extent a man evades, the programming of his emotional computer is done by chance influences; by random impressions, associations, imitations, by undigested snatches of environmental bromides, by cultural osmosis. If evasion or lethargy is a man’s predominant method of mental functioning, the result is a sense of life dominated by fear-a soul like a shapeless piece of clay stamped by footprints going in all directions. (In later years, such a man cries that he has lost his sense of identity; the fact is that he never acquired it.)" -Ayn Rand, The Romantic Manifesto

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Peddled outrage

Beware the peddled outrage
Of fear and politics cheap
Beware the prophets of the net
Who spread shallow writings deep
There's a flavor for every variety
And there's a flavor for you
Distract you from true issues
About which you actually can do.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Re: 12 year old censored by Mormon church

I keep seeing this post about the poor brave 12 year old who the horrible Mormon church is censoring. Of course anything pro-LGBT in any way is "courageous" and worth celebrating, but I have some reservations here.

First: She is 12 years old. I don't want to be the one who says "a 12 year old can't have sexual identity" but... think of when you were 12 years old. You had /just graduated elementary school/. Seventh grade. Maybe you had crushes at that point, but you certainly weren't anywhere near developed enough to take stands this way. She is being fed ideas if not lines from somewhere, as I will argue further shortly.

Second: This was obviously a publicity stunt, as they recorded the thing. Video recording in the chapel is against church policy, and you can see that they are holding the phone camera low so as not to attract attention.

Third: Gay people in church is totally chill. Gay people bearing testimony in church is totally chill. Gay people bearing testimony about their gayness, how its influenced them, how it makes their walk with God more difficult, etc, is totally chill. A gay person standing up and telling everyone that the church is wrong and should change and basically praising themselves for being gay, in church? That is out of line. It wasn't a "courageous testimony", it was a prepared speech, which is not what testimony meeting is for. You're allowed to believe whatever you want in this church. You are not allowed to tell other people what to believe. A ward building is not a government-protected free-speech zone, and the Councillor was well within his bounds to ask her to sit down. They do this when people are going over time, and it is not shocking that one would do it when someone is preaching against the church from the pulpit.

Fourth: We're told she prepared it, with help from her parents. Okay. It sounds more like canned LGBT talk points, but if they want us to believe that she did it all by herself without any influence, whatever. But then submitting this to major news outlets afterward? That's pushing an agenda. /the church is not the place for you to push your agenda/. This should cast some serious doubt on the authenticity of the whole thing.

Fifth: This darling is now the star of the week for the LGBT community. She's going to enjoy a bunch of fame, and then they're going to discard her for whatever new controversy comes up like they always do, and I think it is wrong for her parents to embroil her in that. Most left-politics works this way, feeding a frenzy of pathos swooning media articles, but children should not be used as a hammer for your political issues. A sort of political child sacrifice.

Sixth: You can't feel the spirit watching it. The spirit left the chapel when she started her speech. It always does when you try to push your viewpoint down someone's throat, whether you are pushing a correct viewpoint or not.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

"Thought Prison" by Bruce Charlton

Bruce is a nice fellow over at and, and he wrote a nice book about political correctness, attempting to define the undermining philosophy of the left, though he notes it permeates the political right to a great extent also.  Here are some excepts:

Whence comes the sheer venom of PC?
How is it that people who believe in nothing (or, if they believe in anything, it is supposedly in tolerance, pacifism, ‘relativism’, social constructionism…stuff like that) - how come these people are so vicious?
I think it is because they fear that their own pleasurable distractions – their lifestyle choices - will be constrained or even taken-away by the opponents of PC.
And for the PC, pleasurable distraction is life itself.
I say this without a shred of exaggeration.
If you believe in nothing, if life can have no real objective meaning and all is socially constructed; then pleasure is absolutely necessary as an analgesic, and distraction is the primary philosophical argument.
The politically correct are nihilists, that is reality-deniers, and when there is no reality then the only positive is pleasure.

The venom of the politically correct is the venom of a person faced by the extinction of those pleasurable distractions upon which they rely utterly to keep themselves going:

Since PC is a wave of moral 'progress' which leaves-behind all previous moral standards and behaviours - there can be no accumulation of moral capital.

But the news is not all good for victim group members - because as a PC-indulged victim you lack moral responsibility, which means you are treated as a child or an imbecile.Because by merely existing you are regarded as special - therefore anything that you personally might think or do is automatically invalidated, rendered invisible.

(Patrons expect beneficiaries to be grateful. However, it has commonly been observed that patrons are in fact always hated. Do a man a good turn, and you will have an enemy for life. The patronized will not rest until they have expunged their sense of dependent gratitude in the cleansing act of biting-off the hand that has been stroking and feeding them.)

PC altruism can therefore be seen as objectification of Christian ‘charity’. Charity is an individual, chosen expression of Love; by contrast PC altruism is a coercive, measurable, procedural transfer of quantifiable ‘goods’.)

Whatever state of affairs existed in the past or currently exists in the absence of an abstract system of allocation is regarded by PC as intrinsically unjust on principle, and without need for evidence of injustice. So, actual, real world equality of outcome is a matter of near indifference to political correctness; except as ‘evidence’ of the need for PC systems of allocation.