Virtuous Villains

Beyond a crimp on traditional good behavior and a brake on personal responsibility and positive determination, the surfeit of progressive virtue among the pseudoppressed creates even more havoc: it causes an increase in bad behavior.

Virtuous Villains:
Those pseudoppressed who justify their traditionally bad acts as caused by oppression, or even think of them as virtuous acts of liberation.

Virtuous Villains rationalize their wrongdoing as being created by oppression. It’s a license to be bad. The thinking is, “Why should I worry about doing wrong since I’m overflowing with virtue?” or even, “I am fighting for what is right.” If a tinge of conscience does become conscious, everything can be justified because bad behavior is perceived to be caused by victim-hood, not by free choice. In addition, in the mind of a Virtuous Villain, it’s not really bad behavior: it’s righteous payback. During the 1992 Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, one African-American rioter, who was taken into custody after using a car for batting practice with the European-American passengers inside, said repeatedly in the squad car, “This is right, this is right, this is right.”* It was right – but only by the code of political correctness. His act, while clearly not good under traditional morality, was filled with progressive virtue.

Virtuous Villains rationalize their wrongdoing as being created by oppression. It’s a license to be bad. The thinking is, “Why should I worry about doing wrong since I’m overflowing with virtue?” or even, “I am fighting for what is right.”

The Enlightened have a guilty conscience due to their perceived oppression of the assorted pseudoppressed groups. This “liberal guilt” filters through to the rest of society in various degrees and leads to a coddling and non-confrontational relationship with the pseudoppressed. The rest of society tends to treat the pseudoppressed with kid gloves. For example, because the poor are thought to be generally more virtuous than the wealthy, and because their condition is thought to be due to oppression, progressive society has a diffident attitude toward them, and little inclination to promote self-improvement and self-responsibility among them. Liberal guilt and the kid-gloves treatment it encourages solidify the dysfunctional relationship between the pseudoppressed and the rest of society.

* Lou Cannon, Official Negligence: How Rodney King and the riots changed Los Angeles and the LAPD, (Westview Press, 1999), p. 283.

How Pseudoppressors Gain Progressive Virtue by Embracing the Progressive Worldview

Pseudoppression is a mostly unconscious belief, imbibed during childhood and reinforced by progressive culture. For the great majority of progressives, it’s an unconscious way of seeing the workings of the world; it is to them an unspoken truth that society comprises warring groups which either dominate or are dominated. But for the elites who are conscious of the dynamics and opportunities of newthink, the belief in pseudoppression is an opportunity to control the mindset of a group by creating imaginary enemies – a technique straight out of 1984.

Because of their belief that society is a battlefield composed of groups that either dominate or are dominated, devout progressives search for security. They unconsciously seek protection from a social world perceived to be inherently hostile. For this and other reasons, newthink moves people away from individualism – except in superficial and pseudo-independent matters – and toward group identification. Unlike Americanism, which led people to focus on individual success, newthink focuses on group success – where success is defined as victory against an oppressive group.

Personification of virtue (Greek ἀρετή) in Cel...

Personification of virtue (Greek ἀρετή) in Celsus Library in Ephesos, Turkey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you’re a newthinking member of a pseudoppressed group, — if you are poor, of non-European ethnicity, female, or homosexual, etc. — your group provides perceived protection. In reality, pseudoppressed group status in progressive society provides more than protection: it provides positive advantages. Group preferences tilt in your favor. Progressive society and its media sympathize with your plight. And because of your group status, you have inherent progressive virtue.

As a progressive, if you’re a member of a pseudoppressor group – if you’re American, of European ancestry, Christian, male, wealthy or heterosexual, or may the universe help you, all of them – your initial balance in your progressive virtue bank account is sorely lacking.  That’s not a small thing; progressive virtue and vice are equivalent to good and evil under the traditional American worldview.  Under newthink, the best way for a pseudoppressor to gain progressive virtue (and gain social power) is to renounce his pseudoppression and become one of the Enlightened.

The Enlightened, as defined earlier, are the progressive elite. They are pseudoppressors who have renounced their pseudoppression, or pseudoppressed who have embraced newthink morality. They are filled with progressive virtue; they are devout adherents of most or all of newthink’s unconscious beliefs; they consciously believe in the need to change the culture; they often become Progressive Missionaries or Progressive Crusaders. Because they often come from a perceived oppressor class but choose not to oppress, they have a strong sense of superiority; because they are so certain of the justice of their beliefs, they are intolerant of the beliefs of others; because they are trying to transform an unaware or recalcitrant culture, they are often duplicitous by necessity and without guilt.

…on the negative side, the Enlightened are characterized by arrogance, close-mindedness and easy duplicity. On the positive side, they are often very intelligent, well-meaning, hard-working and persistent… Think of some famous progressives — don’t these traits seem familiar?

So, on the negative side, the Enlightened are characterized by arrogance, close-mindedness and easy duplicity. On the positive side, they are often very intelligent, well-meaning, hard-working and persistent – traits that you would expect in a devout missionary or crusader. Think of some famous progressives — don’t these traits seem familiar?

Public Opinion Management

The Enlightened — the progressive elite — believe that their virtue and wisdom give them the responsibility to shape our culture like a good mother shapes her child. One way the Enlightened shape public opinion is through public opinion management (POM) by the media.

public opinion management (POM) n : low-intensity but constant propaganda that surreptitiously shapes public opinion by highlighting events or opinions that illustrate politically correct positions; by ignoring events or opinions that contradict progressive beliefs; by framing issues as exploiter vs. exploited; by attaching virtue to politically correct positions and people; by implicitly reinforcing politically correct assumptions

pom vb pommed, pomming : to manage public opinion

On the national and international scale, what we used to call news is now mostly public opinion management. The progressive bias of the national media is well-documented and acknowledged by all objective self-shoe-tiers. But it’s more than a bias: it’s a constant, partly unconscious, and surreptitious process of shaping public opinion in a progressively-virtuous direction. I suspect that the higher one goes up the ranks of the Enlightened, the more clear-eyed and conscious they are of the nature of their POM.

On the national and international scale, what we used to call news is now mostly public opinion management.

Perhaps in every society some are called to be priests. Under newthink, membership in the Enlightened is the form priesthood takes. But the Enlightened are not motivated solely by their progressive virtue. The power progressive priesthood entails is enticing – the power to shape public institutions, shape law, shape thought, shape the next generation.

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A Progressive Belief: Progressive Virtue Trumps Human Law

Traditional Americans believed that good and evil ultimately trump human law. Many of them believed that in extreme circumstances they were obliged to follow the higher good even if it violated the law. Our Declaration of Independence says as much:

English: This is a high-resolution image of th...

English: This is a high-resolution image of the United States Declaration of Independence (article (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it [my italics], and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.”

In the same way, progressives believe that society has no ultimate right to dictate to them and that their virtue system ultimately supersedes human law.

The unconscious logic supporting this belief goes like this, starting from the “Human beings are inherently and transcendentally noble” branch of the newthink worldview tree:

• Human beings are inherently and transcendentally noble.
• Our motives are inherently noble.
• We are progressively virtuous.
• Progressive virtue is supremely important.
• Society has no ultimate right to dictate to us because progressive virtue and progressive unvirtue ultimately trump human law.

The unconscious logic branching out of this belief is:

• It is our responsibility as the most virtuous and best-informed in a godless world to steer and shape the culture.

 

The Enlightened believe that, because of their enlightened minds and progressively-virtuous emotions, traditional standards don’t apply to them. Furthermore, they believe that their virtue and enlightenment give them the responsibility to steer and shape our culture in the same way a good mother steers and shapes her child.

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The Enlightened

Progressives tend to see themselves as progressively virtuous.  They don’t need to do anything to achieve this state of virtue; they are virtuous by default under their worldview because of their beliefs.

The unconscious logic branching out of this belief in one’s own progressive virtue is:

• Everything we do will be progressively virtuous.
• Progressive virtue is supremely important.

 

Social dynamics under each worldview create character archetypes — paradigmatic personality types shaped by the positive and negative rewards of a society — specific to that worldview.  Devout progressives believe they and their actions are progressively virtuous. This has led to the development of a character archetype among the progressive elite – The Enlightened – who feel superior to the less virtuous masses. They perceive their own motivations as noble, they feel infallible, and they appropriate the right to ignore, as much as possible, society’s dictates.

The Enlightened:
The progressive elite – devout and progressively virtuous, they feel superior to the general public. They have a sense of mission focused on promoting their morality and culture, and fighting oppressors. They feel relatively infallible since they are inspired by their presumably inherent and transcendent nobility. Because of that, they are close-minded.

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