History as psychosis?


 

Paul Wallis, Sydney Media JamThe definition of psychosis is: “ A severe mental disorder in which thought and emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality.” If you consider that as a description of humanity’s relationship with other people’s realities, psychosis covers it nicely.

Humanity is its own worst enemy, and worst friend, in some cases.  In this time of global disasters, it’s worth looking at how thought and emotions have basically lost the plot.

Psychotic is definitely a word which can be applied to the current mess.  This world is so bad now that losing contact with reality is probably a better option than facing it. Thought and emotions, however basic and delusional, paranoid and absurd, were the mechanisms which caused it.

The mere fact that a collection of brattish fools and criminals of various kinds are now in charge of a disgusting global dunghill should be proof enough.  Poverty, slavery, gigantic pandemics, you name it; it’s the Middle Ages with smart phones.

Psychosis in history

Psychosis, you say, Aarfy? Nah…

This has happened many times before. It’s a textbook case, in fact. The diagnostic pattern couldn’t be more obvious. The more out of touch and delusional a ruling clique, the more catastrophic the backlash. History is full of ruling cliques who were running empires one day and being executed or assassinated the next.

Yes, this type psychosis is stupid, as well as delusional. The bigger, more obvious targets are the first hit. One of the reasons that astonishingly untalented people become “leaders” is that everyone else isn’t quite stupid enough to make a target of themselves, particularly in dangerous times. In the corporate world, the least mentally agile or most trusting are the ones given responsibility for failures, etc.

Power does more than corrupt. It rules rulers. It makes them its slave. The most idiotic actions in human history can be traced to the incompetent being “given” power.  In practice, the “gift” is a trade off with those ruled. Real power exists in its exercise, not in titles like Emperor, President, etc.

Psychoses don’t need conspiracy theories. This book is history. Consider.

The Roman emperor Augustus, one of the smarter leaders of all time, basically disappeared from sight while ruling. It’s an almost unique achievement. He continued to actually rule, but from a safe distance, away from the poisonous and dangerous Roman Senate and the entrenched politics of his time. He became a god, in fact, rather than theory, because he could override the Senate and anyone else. That was a mix of personal and national survival, about as sane as any leader needs to be. He basically dodged the psychosis of power and the psychoses of history. His successors, with a few exceptions, did the exact opposite, and destroyed the empire.

The psychosis finds a home among the stupid, the greedy and the lazy. Those who perpetrate history’s horrors are never truly intelligent, but they are psychotic by any standards. The politics of the cave, the friends of the powerful and the corrupt, continue, and that really defines the problem.  The stupid, greedy and lazy always associate with the powerful. Even if the ruling clique isn’t psychotic by nature, it will become so, sooner or later, because of the corrupting influences on it.

Didn’t know that, eh?

The psychosis becomes the norm. Loss of contact with reality requires a particular type of logic. Some subjects are forbidden. Others are ignored, or ridiculed.  Facts are interpreted, rather than understood correctly. In a truly psychotic environment, there’s little point in understanding facts, anyway. There’s nobody there who’ll be prepared to do anything about them.

The loss of contact with reality, however, includes a fatal flaw in the psychosis; it also means denial of real dangers which can destroy it. The dangerous enemy is devalued. Even actual attacks are downgraded to nuisance value, not seen in their true light. The psychosis thrives on its achievements, whether they exist or not. Therefore, anything which contradicts those achievements is not accepted as fact.

The psychosis, like a disease, also has a weakness. It tends to kill its host. That’s long been argued by biologists as an own goal for diseases; it’s anti-survival. That a psychosis, the epitome in human history of anti-survivalism, acts against its own survival is rather reassuring.

Psychosis  as a living thing

Isaac Asimov wrote a story published by Galaxy Science Fiction in 1951 called Hostess about a parasitic species which existed only in the minds of people and aliens. It was an intelligent species, but it didn’t have a particular form, just a mentality. The parasite can breed by mixing hosts, and then the hosts are no longer required. The parasitic species continues its existence at the expense of the host species. It actually is a typical parasite.

There’s nothing at all unlikely about this scenario. A psychosis, created by chemical actions, is alive by most definitions, if it acts consciously and reproduces in some form. It’s a bit strange, in fact, that humans, so obsessed with their own mentalities, don’t recognize the difference between parasitic behaviours and natural behaviours. The historical psychosis has a long list of examples of itself in genocidal maniacs, serial killers, tyrants, religious nuts, and megalomaniacs. About 10% of managers, in fact, are believed to be psychotic, and they sometimes show all the traits of true human-hating psychosis.

Do you see it?
I see a herd of beautiful wild ponies.
Thanks, Daria.

Much less reassuringly – There’s no credible, survival-based rationale at all for humanity’s seemingly endless psychotic social, military, religious, psychological and economic wars against itself. It’s as if an anti-human psychosis was a sort of plague, acting the way it does, for thousands of years. Whole civilizations have come and gone on the basis of psychotic behavior.

Being anti-human also  isn’t any kind natural human mental state. Humans are basically co-dependent, whether they like it or not. The only reason humanity survived prehistory was because people cooperated.

Humans survive a lot better when they’re not at war with each other in any form. Another friendly human is a major asset. Anything which promotes human conflict is anti-human, anti-survival, and therefore psychotic. Anything which poisons the social environment, like bullies, criminals, etc. is also anti-survival on the same basis, simply because they disrupt valuable natural cooperation.

So – The psychosis is anti-survival, but it’s also a historical fact. There’s a trail of disasters all the way back to the beginning of human history showing how useless this psychosis is and always has been. Did humanity defeat all its natural enemies and simply replace them with itself? Or is there some serious disease affecting people throughout history which is a real risk to future human survival?

Paul Wallis, Sydney Media Jam, Paul Wallis books

Still working on the upgrade, sorry, and working pretty much all the time otherwise. It happens when it happens. 

The dynamics of social insanity networks


 

Wasp2There seems to be some sort of perceived “mystery” about how so many utterly useless people come to be running major issues around the world. It’s really quite simple, and the resulting social insanity is a natural product of its dynamics.

The mechanics of this process follow from the never to be sufficiently damned theory of “social IQ”. On the basis of this theory, getting tuberculosis is a social positive, mainly because everyone else is doing it, and you can relate better to people by getting the disease yourself. You’re more credible if you’re rotting away with the crowd.

The diagram below is a different type of flow chart. The elements in networks are a selection of basic, easily recognizable, types. Connections can be systematic or random. They may occur in several groups or just a few. (Sorry, maths guys, got a bit tired of the idea that networks are based on natural connections. There’s nothing natural about these elements in the network.) I couldn’t include all the sub-groups, obviously.

Dynamics of social insanityAs you can see, you don’t even need raving lunatics, corporate hangers-on or others to form a very messy network with any range of possible effects on societies. A few groups can create their own networks. Technically this is called an ad hoc network.

The drivers for the selection below are a sort of synthesis, a committee-like grouping of types. Each has their own reasons for being part of this network. They use their own groups as networks, which become sub-networks in this greater network of networks.

Each group has a function which defines it within the network. Parasites may include criminals, shills, fraudulent spruikers, PR, politicians, etc. The working dynamic at inception is that none of these groups have any natural opposition to each other. They can work together. They have natural roles in such a group.

By rights, most of these groups would qualify as having serious psychological and existential issues which would qualify them for welfare support and shelters. They’re like social eunuchs, able only to work in friendly environments. The heavyweights in their professions are outside the groups, mainly because they don’t need their support.

The art of being a Somebody front coverThe numbers game, however, creates a platform where individual performances would create only contempt. Groups, however ridiculous, have traction where individually pitiful jerks don’t. Ironically, or perhaps naturally, the recognition of their lack of personal power acts as the catalyst for group formation.

The result is social insanity. The least qualified, personally or professionally, receive credibility where they could never otherwise expect it. A dribbling buffoon of commerce, for example, despised by the real market, can become a somebody in these environments.

The social status whores are a natural fit in this sort of network. They may have nothing to do with the network’s activities, but they’re participants, delivering verbiage and bile to reinforce their own images, therefore contributing to the network as a whole.

There are some natural network members. The most tedious plodders, too, those who can bore rocks to death with their appearance alone, also find a home in this ecology of the execrable.  They need that home, because they’re the also-rans in natural groups. They’re the hostile gut flora of societies, spreading their tiresome, turgid toxins in a sheltered place. The joke is that their dogmatic drivel often becomes the sole record of their “thinking” and record keeping.

Wanderlaugh_Cover_for_Kindle 300PPIThe result, of course, is a decision making process dictated by those who are mediocrities by definition, leading to social insanity.

Social insanity can be defined as deliberately doing what’s worst for the society, particularly on a regular basis. Mismanagement cripples societies. It has destroyed whole civilizations.

It is possible that these networks seriously believe they’re making correct decisions, but delusions tend to be like that. These decision makers tend to be purely machine-people, delivering the products of the network(s). Denialists are often part of networks like these, professional career liars who seriously believe in their statement that black is white and expect others to believe it. Academic cowards, who never disagree with anyone senior or able to destroy them with a sneer, add a veneer of opaque respectability to otherwise transparent bull on gigantic scales.

Note also that this is an almost completely decentralized network. There’s no single point of attack to kill it entirely. The individual elements, down to the individuals themselves, can survive the end of a network or major networks. They simply graft themselves on to other groups.

What’s needed is a vaccine, preferably based on proofs and logic. The one weak point of networks of this kind is their total inability to deliver consistent logic or manage emerging situations. Like most parasitic organisms, they need a host, not new environmental dangers. They don’t adapt well to innovation or new elements in their areas of interest.

If you’re thinking of joining one of these networks, never come anywhere near this blog again. I’m training it to immunize itself against social insanity.

www.sydneymediajam.com