(This article originally appeared on the Unz Review.)
In 1999, a big hit movie was The Matrix. I went and saw it but I don’t recall it making much of an impression on me. At the time, my understanding of the world was pretty conventional. I believed the things I was told — for example, that a lone nut by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald had shot President Kennedy, and another lone gunman named James Earl Ray later shot Martin Luther King. Of course 9/11 hadn’t happened yet, but, when it did, a couple of years later, I assumed that the official story was broadly true. In retrospect, I am not sure whether, at the time, I even knew the term “false flag terrorism”. Probably not. In general, I believed that the way to stay informed about world events was to watch CNN and the BBC or read the New York Times. I also held rather typical mainstream liberal/progressive views that a North American university graduate would hold. In short, I was a typical overeducated idiot.
Not very long ago, since it was linked on a web page, I watched the famous red pill scene again and it was a shock. I thought: “But my God, that’s… that’s… absolutely uncanny!”
So much had happened in the intervening decade and a half, and I had undergone such an intellectual evolution that, of course, my reaction to the scene was bound to be very different. It was really thought provoking.
On further consideration, though, I realized that, as compelling as the red pill scene is, it still basically begs the question. In the real world, there is no such red pill, either at the local pharmacy or from the neighborhood drug pusher. So, how would a real-world Morpheus get Neo to perceive the Matrix that surrounds them?
You see, the red pill is basically a sort of deus ex machina. The character takes the pill and voilà! If you think about it, it’s understandable that they introduce such a plot device. That way, the film avoids having to explain how the characters came to perceive the Matrix. Actually I can’t even imagine offhand how the movie would go about explaining that, but if it did, it would end up being a very different sort of film, much more complex and psychological. Too intellectual. It would bore most people. This way, the character wakes up without taking too much time away that could be better used in slick martial arts scenes, which are, after all, what most moviegoers want to see.
Another interesting aspect of this is that, in the moral universe of the Matrix, the character must choose the red pill of his own free will. Morpheus gives Neo the whole spiel and Neo has to decide. Okay, obviously we know he’ll choose the red pill because if he chose the blue one, the movie would be over before it had hardly started. But he is offered the choice. If Neo had chosen the blue pill, the other characters weren’t going to jump him and pin him down and force him to ingest the red pill. Though, actually, come to think of it, for all we know, that was the backup plan. But no, I’m pretty sure that the ethos of the Matrix is that a person must consciously choose the red pill. In other words, people have the right to delude themselves.
Another movie that came out a decade before that, the John Carpenter film “They Live”, has a similar theme, where the characters perceive a reality that others don’t. Like the Matrix, it has a deus ex machina plot device that “explains” how the characters come to perceive the nature of the world they are in. Instead of the red pill, it’s these special sunglasses.
But there is a very basic difference in a somewhat analogous scene. When the main character in “They Live” wants his best buddy to see reality, i.e. put on the sunglasses, the friend adamantly refuses. However, the protagonist won’t take no for an answer and a really violent broken down fight ensues. Finally the main character forces his friend, kicking and screaming (and punching and head-butting), to put on the sunglasses and see reality.
This crazy fight scene is also something that I perceive very differently watching it now than when I first saw it many years back. On the superficial level, the scene makes no sense. You just think: this is silly, nobody would go to such lengths to avoid trying on a pair of sunglasses. He would just humor his friend and try them on before it got to anything like that! On a deeper level, though, once one understands what the sunglasses represent, one cannot help but feel that, as over-the-top as the scene is, it is, on some level, far more realistic than the Matrix red pill scene. The adamant refusal of the character in “They Live” to put on the sunglasses is actually far more like the way people in the real world behave than when Neo eagerly grabs the red pill in the Matrix. It would be even more realistic if, instead of shouting “you crazy Mother” while fighting to avoid putting on the sunglasses, the character shouted instead: “You crazy conspiracy theorist!” (In fact, the “conspiracy theorist” label is the most basic weapon of these reality avoiders and this essay will address this question later.)
BDQ, high IQ idiocy, and the Ludek Pachman Moment (LPM)
Getting back to the real world, we still have the observable fact that some people perceive the propaganda matrix and others are oblivious to it, and we don’t have any red pills or sunglasses to explain this. Just as some people get calculus and others don’t, some people see through the bullshit and others don’t. That’s pretty clear…
Now, when it comes to calculus or other academic subjects, we have IQ; we say the higher IQ people do better at school, or at least it comes easier to them. However, the ability to see through the propaganda, bullshit generally speaking, does not seem to have much (if anything) to do with IQ. There are people with a very high IQ who are just completely helpless when it comes to seeing through the propaganda. The technical term for such a person is HIQI, or “high IQ idiot”. The term is not really as contradictory as it seems, since, properly understood, there is another kind of intelligence in play than IQ, that allows people to see through the bullshit. The technical term we shall use for this is BDQ, which stands for Bullshit Detection Quotient. The term “high IQ idiot” does not originate in this essay. A quick google search reveals prior usage here and there, but this essay may be the first to provide a formal definition of the concept:
A “high IQ idiot” is somebody with a combination of high IQ and very low BDQ.
There is an event that I recall from a book that I read a long time ago that, I think, illustrates the concept quite nicely. It’s a rather obscure book, probably out of print now, entitled “Checkmate in Prague”. The author was a chess grandmaster named Ludek Pachman. I read the book back in my teens when I was a fanatical chess player. It’s partly a memoir of the author’s chess career but is mostly a political memoir of his time in Czechoslovakia under communist rule and it culminates in his defection to the West some time in the early 1970’s.
The event I have in mind goes like this: Ludek’s housekeeper is going off to the market to buy some food. As she is going out, Ludek tells her that he would prefer that she not buy pork. You see, Ludek had read some sort of popular science article that warned of how unhealthy it was to eat pork. He was concerned that he was eating too much pork and would prefer for her to buy beef or chicken instead.
His housekeeper, surely not a very educated woman, responded: “Oh, that is all nonsense, Mr. Pachman. They are telling us that pork is unhealthy because, at the moment, there is a severe shortage of pork and they don’t want people to notice.”
Ludek took this as an example of the kinds of misguided notions that uneducated people engage in. (I don’t believe he used the term “conspiracy theory”.) For Ludek, it was completely unthinkable that scientists would write an article like that saying that pork was unhealthy if there was not some real evidence that it was.
Well, some months after this, Ludek was reading some popular science article and the article was extolling the health benefits of pork. Now, apparently, pork was by far the healthiest meat, much better for you than beef or chicken. It struck Ludek as rather odd that the scientific consensus on this could change so quickly. Ludek looked into the question and discovered that, now there was a huge oversupply of pork. It seems that the authorities had overreacted to the previous shortage and now there was more pork than anybody knew what to do with. Thus, the authorities were desperately trying to increase the demand for pork by putting out articles telling everybody how healthy it was.
Many readers might chuckle at the above story, not think that it is very consequential. After all, when you think of the various abuses committed in communist regimes, a few porkies about pork surely do not rank very high. Nonetheless, this incident really did shock poor Ludek, and was, as I recall, one of the key events that caused him to turn against the communist regime and, ultimately, to defect to the West. He just really disliked living in such a corrupt, mendacious society, in which everything was a lie. (Whether Ludek was right to assume that the West was much better is another fascinating question, but is beyond the scope of this essay.)
Now, what I would point out about this story is that Ludek almost certainly had a much higher IQ than his housekeeper. And he was also far more educated. However, his housekeeper immediately knew that these articles appearing in the press — denigrating (and later extolling) the eating of pork — were bullshit, while Ludek was taken in by them. In short, Ludek’s housekeeper had a much higher BDQ than Ludek did.
Since I feel that the foregoing anecdote is such a good basic example of a certain phenomenon, I shall introduce some new terminology. This kind of realisation that Ludek has, when he sees how naive he has been and that his uneducated housekeeper, in a very basic way, is actually smarter than he is — let us call this a Ludek Pachman moment, or LPM for short.
I believe that, for people who belong to what we could broadly call the Deep Politics Community or the Truth Community, the LPM is a very basic recurring theme. For example, Ron Unz has published a series of articles under the rubric of “American Pravda” in which he documents just how unreliable the American (and really, Western) media is. The facts that Ron documents are indeed compelling, but the articles can also be looked at another way: you see, besides just covering various factual material, he is recounting his own personal intellectual journey, his own personal “Ludek Pachman moment”, or perhaps really a series of LPM‘s.
About a year ago, Jeff Brown wrote an article about what he calls the Great Western Firewall. He outlines at great length a series of facts, but properly understood, I would say that Jeff is also describing his own LPM. While Jeff Brown outlines a completely different series of facts in GWF than Ron Unz in AP, one could say that, in deep structure, if you will, they are broadly the same. In each case, the author is describing his own LPM, or a series of LPM‘s that constitute an overall awakening.
The reason that I found the aforementioned articles by Ron Unz and Jeff Brown so compelling is that I myself went on a similar journey and it is still fairly recent. I surmise that the people who react negatively to those articles (and I recall that Jeff Brown’s GWF article got a lot of negative comments) are people who have not (yet) had their own LPM. I guess the most basic diagnostic self-test in this regard is that if you believe that the way you get educated about the world is to watch CNN and BBC and read the New York Times, then you have not yet had your own LPM. And certainly, if you still think that calling somebody a “conspiracy theorist” is some sort of meaningful insult, you are in dire need of your own Ludek Pachman Moment.
BDQ and Roger Rabbit Artefacts (RRA’s)
When I started thinking seriously about the whole BDQ issue, one aspect of it occurred to me fairly quickly. People have a strong baseline of bullshit detection capability when dealing with direct visual stimuli. By that, I mean pictures of things that are obviously absurd. For example, however low your BDQ happens to be, if somebody shows you a picture of a car with square wheels, you immediately identify this as impossible. So it stands to reason that if you want to bullshit somebody, it is easier to do so verbally than visually. I guess the issue is that a visual stimulus goes directly to some part of the cortex that, on a non-conscious, non-verbal level of reasoning, just immediately identifies the input as absurd and impossible.
Along these lines, I thought about another movie I saw a long time ago. It came out in 1987, a year before “They Live”. I am thinking of “Who framed Roger Rabbit?”. That was, I think, the first movie in which human actors interacted seamlessly with cartoon characters. (There were other attempts before, I’m sure, but I think that Roger Rabbit took this to a very polished level.) I think that Roger Rabbit, i.e. cartoons being superimposed on reality, can be a nice metaphor for thinking about these kinds of issues. In fact, I believe that many an LPM that people have undergone is when it dawns on them that some story that is presented by the media is an RRN, a Roger Rabbit narrative.
Though it was quite a technical achievement at the time, one thing is clear about this: everybody can identify which elements on the screen are cartoons and which ones are real. A cartoon building or a cartoon car just doesn’t look like a real building or a real car. And most certainly cartoon characters cannot be confused with a real human actor. So, again, when there is a direct visual stimulus like this, we all possess the wetware to identify effortlessly and immediately what is real and what is a cartoon, at least in a Roger Rabbit sort of movie in which cartoons and real people share the screen. So if we were watching one of those Bin Laden videos and some actual cartoon Arabs were to come out in the video, characters out of a Disney animated Aladdin or Sinbad, we would all presumably realize that the video is fake.
While nobody has any problem identifying a cartoon image, people frequently do have problems with a cartoon narrative. In May of 2011, in the first version of what happened in Abbottabad, Pakistan, a White House spokesman claims that Osama Bin Laden, when cornered, tried to use one of his wives as a “human shield”. They did later change the story, but this first version is a clear case of a cartoon element being overlaid onto something that is supposed to be a real event. My terminology for this is RRA, which stands for Roger Rabbit artifact.
Admittedly, since no photographic or video evidence was ever produced of this Abbottabad raid, it is not an RRA in the more literal sense of involving video fakery. (Video fakery is frequent in other hoax events, but not this one.) I still classify this as an RRA, since an event is alleged to occur that clearly emerges from a cartoon or Hollywoodian universe. You see, the “human shield” story requires Osama Bin Laden, who is ostensibly a real person in the real world, to exist mentally in a sort of cartoon universe. Upon realizing that agents of the U.S. government have arrived to liquidate him, he reasons that these are chivalrous individuals who would not shoot a woman. Therefore, he can prevent himself from being shot by getting behind a woman. People, let’s think about this: would anybody in the real world ever reason this way? Surely, anybody — and I mean outside of a Hollywood movie or comic book — on realizing that professional assassins are coming to kill him, would try to put as much distance between himself and his family members as possible. Putting them between him and the shooters would only get them needlessly killed as well!
Properly understood, it does not at all matter that the authorities later denied the human shield story. It really doesn’t, because, you see, once you identify an RRA in the narrative, even if it is later amended, you know the whole thing must be fake. This is because there is really no way that an RRA can just slip into a real event. No, there must be actual fiction writers involved! And that means that the event really must be a hoax. Why would you hire Hollywood scriptwriters, say, to write a script for something that really happened? Also, professional writers don’t write that fast. They have to have had the script written before the event (allegedly) happened!
When the story contains what is clearly an RRA, and then no actual evidence is ever provided that any of this happened, we can say that the event must be some sort of hoax. (To be clear, I don’t mean to say that nothing happened. Some operation of some sort occurred and possibly somebody was killed. Something happened but we have no way of knowing what it was! We do know, however, that whatever they say happened is not what happened!) I hereby propose a basic principle of detecting official bullshit:
If there is a single RRA in an official account, then the whole thing is an RRN.
BDQ and the ISIS Beheading Videos
It was less than a year ago that I watched one of those ISIS beheading videos for the first time. I had frequently run into claims that they were fake, but had always refrained from watching any of them. I doubt I’m the only person in this situation. After all, even if you think there is only a small chance that you will see somebody really getting beheaded, do you want to take that chance? Still the problem remains: how do you resolve the issue other than looking and seeing for yourself?
When I finally steeled myself and watched some of these videos, it was shocking. The videos were not just fake, they were comically fake! Chock full of Roger Rabbit artifacts. I have to admit that it was only afterwards that I realised something about this that should have been obvious. You see, really, the ISIS beheading videos had to be fake. In fact, some variant of this could, I think be a basic question on a BDQ test:
Does a political movement ever make propaganda films that are designed to portraythemselves as villains out of a comic book?
Really, think about it. You know, even without checking, I am absolutely certain that you can go and look back at any of the propaganda films from Germany in the Nazi period or from Soviet Russia and they never portray themselves as evil. No! Of course not! They portray their enemies as comic book villains, not themselves! That these videos therefore must be fake really ought to be obvious to anybody with, let’s say, an average BDQ (which, we could say by analogy, with IQ, is 100). However, it is clear enough that, in the society in which we live, people who immediately see through the absurdity of this have much higher than the average BDQ, surely 120 or far higher, I would say. And, actually, though I am a bit ashamed to admit it, this did not immediately occur to me. I don’t know what my BDQ is currently since I have never taken a BDQ test (due to the little technical obstacle that they don’t exist). I am, however, quite certain that my BDQ is vastly higher than it was ten years ago!
Another odd aspect of these fake ISIS beheading videos is just how much of an open secret it is that they are fake. Most of the western media pretends they are real, but occasionally, somebody doesn’t get the memo, it seems. So, for example, you have this deconstruction of one of the fake videos in the British newspaper, the Daily Mail:
You can see the actual fake video that the article refers to here along with some analysis:
This article quotes an informed source that says that these fake beheading videos are probably made by some production company in California, filmed possibly in Mexico (I guess because production costs are cheaper down there) or alternatively the work was outsourced to Europe, in which case it was probably done by a Spanish company. I have no way of verifying any of the above, but it rings true. In any case, it hardly matters whether the video was filmed in Mexico, Spain, or in Timbuktu. It’s fake.
I think this particular video stars the infamous Jihadi Joseph. Jihadi Joseph, judging by his English diction, seems to have grown up in the United States. There are also Jihadi John videos. Jihadi John has an English accent. Basically, these black-clad knife waving native English speaking head slicers are stock comic book characters being portrayed by actors, thus an RRA, but the videos contain a host of other RRA’s, as you can see if you read the above-linked Daily Mail article.
All that said, properly understood, the entire video is one big Roger Rabbit artifact, a cartoon being superimposed on reality. Now it does seem that there really are these thug/mercenary/gangster types controlling large parts of Syria and Iraq. It is also possible that they do execute people, maybe even a lot of people. However, these fake videos are really a kind of cartoon element being superimposed on what is really happening in the Middle East. The people behind all of this are crafting a kind of Roger Rabbit movie.
The videos are so poor and so obviously fake that it must be that the people behind this have calculated (correctly) that very few people will actually watch the videos anyway. Besides this, and perhaps more importantly, very few western journalists will ever say openly that the videos are fake. This isn’t even a hypothesis. The Jewish-American feminist author Naomi Wolf, openly said that the beheading videos were fake and came under a very concerted character assassination attack. Here is just one example:
Ay, she has gone stark raving mad, the poor dear, claims the videos are fake. It’s so sad but hey, that’s what happens when you spend too much time conversing wit’ yer hoo hah…
But seriously, I feel that, whatever one thinks of Naomi Wolf and the third wave of feminism, whatever that is, and despite my own inability to resist making a joke at her expense, I strongly feel she should be applauded for having the ovaries to tell the truth. She didn’t have to stick her neck out and she had to know what she was in for. People come under concerted attack for telling the truth about these things. Yet, for all of that, it is so well known in certain circles that these videos are fake that they are fodder for comedy. Consider this video put out by some Israeli comedians:
The people who made this video simply take for granted that their public know that all these beheading videos are fake. I infer that anyway, because if their audience actually believed that the beheading videos were real, the skit would be outrageously tasteless. I’m not familiar with these comedians, but it really seems to me that they just assume that their entire audience is hip to the fact that all these beheading videos are fake. It may be that the targeted audience for this group’s comedy videos is a demographic with a far above-average BDQ.
Wings on Pigs: the 9/11 Narrative
Now, I have to make some comments about 9/11 because it is, by far, the biggest of the false flag psy ops. I’m loath to go on that much about it because there is so much material by now. Here we are 14 years after the event, and, like the JFK assassination, it has spawned a vast literature. Of course, like any body of work, it’s a mixed bag, but certainly, just as in the case of the JFK research community, there are some extremely capable people who have worked on this. I myself have not done any independent research. The only novelty I can bring to the table is presentational in nature. It’s the same basic ingredients but maybe I can present them in a somewhat fresh way.
Here is a basic point to consider: the official 9/11 story is a WOP narrative. No, I don’t mean like the Godfather or Goodfellas. The WOP acronym stands for “Wings on Pigs”. Let me explain. There is a standard idiom in the English language:
If pigs had wings, they could fly.
Like any idiom or cliché, we rarely think about it, I suppose. But, one day (I guess because I’m a weirdo) I was actually thinking about this. It struck me that the idiom was obviously false. I mean, think about it. If you could somehow transplant the wings of an eagle, say, onto a pig, you think the pig could fly? Not that I have any background in any of the relevant scientific fields, but it really seems that a pig’s body is too heavy and dense and not the least bit aerodynamic. Surely the eagle’s wings will only work for the eagle, as the eagle’s body has the appropriate characteristics. So, on consideration, it occurred to me that the correct idiom really should be:
Even if a pig had wings, it still couldn’t fly.
So, hopefully you understand what I mean by a WOP, Wings on Pigs narrative. If you tell me a flying pig story, I can take two basic approaches. I can just say: sorry, pigs don’t have wings. Or if I want to be more clever about it, I could pretend to believe that, okay, maybe a pig could have wings, and then argue that, even so, given the properties of a pig’s body, it still can’t fly! In other words, a WOP narrative is when the story is so many degrees away from being possible that you could concede (just for the sake of argument, really, like pretending that pigs have wings) any specific point and it doesn’t matter: the story is still crazy!
Much of the 9/11 truth debate centres around whether the fires that were burning in the buildings could have melted or weakened the supporting steel frame of the buildings sufficiently to cause a structural failure. Well, the answer, on investigation, is pretty clearly no. The fires weren’t anywhere near big enough or hot enough. Much more intense fires have raged far longer in steel-framed high-rises and not once has such a building ever collapsed as a result. Never. It really is that simple. (Propagandists try to complicate the matter by deliberately confusing the temperatures that can be reached in a blast furnace, but in the conditions of these fires burning this way in the open, they’re nowhere near hot enough.) This seems clear enough, but to make matters worse, even if we assumed that the temperatures of the fires were hot enough to significantly weaken steel columns (i.e. if we assume that pigs have wings) the result would never be this kind of straight-down symmetrical collapse. (i.e. the pig would still not fly!)
The clearest case to consider is building 7, which was not even hit by a plane, and its collapse is on film from several different angles:
What is fascinating about this is that the implosion of WTC building 7 is more impressively clean and vertical and symmetrical than even most controlled demolitions you can look at on youtube! There is an interview one can still watch on youtube where the late Danny Jowenko, a Dutch demolition specialist, when shown the building 7 footage for the first time (without initially being told that it happened on 9/11) expresses obvious admiration at how well executed a demolition job it is.
He says: “Those guys really know what they’re doing.” At this point, anybody with a reasonably high BDQ would realize that the official story — that this building collapsed as a result of unplanned, uncontrolled fires — cannot possibly be true. If all of this is not enough, a further point to ponder is that demolition specialists sometimes mess up, on occasion spectacularly, and the demolition fails. Sometimes, the building just partially collapses, or tips over, or something like that. It is utterly preposterous that a perfect symmetrical collapse as we see in the video could occur just by fires spreading in an undirected, uncontrolled manner. It took me a decade to realise this, but a person with a higher BDQ could realise instantly that something this perfectly symmetrical has to be engineered.
The above is how I came to realize that the official 9/11 story could not be true — that, in fact, it is preposterous. What is funny about this is that, once the spell was broken, I started realizing all the other absurd aspects of the story. Consider the hijacking part. Here is a basic BDQ test question:
Would a terrorist mastermind ever send his agents to the target country for a suicide operation over a year before the operation?
It really seems like the answer must be no. Just think about the following considerations:
- The willingness to kill oneself is not a normal state of mind for a person to be in. If somebody is willing to die for the cause now, in February of 2016, is it feasible to plan an operation that depends on that person still being willing to kill himself in August of 2017, say? This seems especially problematic if the person is dropped into a completely novel environment, which the U.S. would be for them. Could anybody really count on people going off to live in another country and then, a year and a half later, being in the exact same state of mind where they are willing to kill themselves? Is there any suicide operation in history that has ever worked like this?
- Moreover, why would you ever send the operatives to the target country over a year before the operation anyway? They were there in Venice, Florida to learn how to fly the plane, eh? You think the U.S. is the only country in the world where you can learn to fly an airplane? Wouldn’t the presence of your operatives in the target country for over a year prior to the operation drastically increase the chance of them being identified and having the plot foiled by organs of the State in that country?
- It’s a lesser issue, but getting a visa to live in a country for over a year is far more difficult than getting a short-term tourist visa. Of course, one could visit a country on the short-term tourist visa and overstay the time limit, but that also introduces an extra risk factor, getting detained or deported for violating the terms of the visa.
If you think about these questions, it becomes obvious fairly quickly that no real operation would ever work the way the 9/11 operation was alleged to work. Any real terrorist organization would have its agents go to the target country at the last possible moment before the operation. They would fly in on a tourist visa, saying they were middle class Arabs there to see Niagara Falls or Disneyworld, and then carry out the operation shortly after arrival.
Again, as in the previous example of the ISIS beheading videos, it seems like a person of average BDQ ought to realize that the whole hijacking story is preposterous. However, that is obviously not the case, not in western countries anyway. If the average BDQ in the West is assumed to be a baseline 100, then it seems just offhand that, to realize the above requires a BDQ of at least 130. Or possibly higher. It should be immediately obvious, yet I have to pinch myself to realize that it took me well over a decade to get there myself.
Fool Me Once, Shame on You…. Fool me twice…
While the BDQ of the general population in the western countries is horrendously low, I have little doubt that the worst of the lot is the United States. Perhaps the most important factor in this is the general ignorance of history. It is not for nothing that the late, great Gore Vidal referred to the U.S.A. as “the United States of Amnesia”. One aspect of Vidal’s insight is that the American people, as a group, have next to no real collective memory, so they can just keep falling for the same propaganda over and over again.
Doubtless, low BDQ and ignorance of history tend to go hand in hand. After all, much of what we call “intelligence” amounts to pattern recognition and the form of intelligence that we call here BDQ, the ability to detect bullshit, is definitely no exception. This is because the bullshit is surprisingly repetitive in nature. For example, in early August of 1914, the German army invaded Belgium. The British government had already decided to get into the war but needed a pretext, so they were shocked, outraged, that the Germans had violated Belgian neutrality. They further claimed that the Germans were committing horrid atrocities in Belgium, “bayoneting Belgian babies” among other things.
A full 76 years later, in 1990, to get the American public behind a war against Iraq, they invented the story of the Iraqis taking babies out of the incubators in Kuwait. Now, you would think that anybody who knew history, when they see basically the same war propaganda recycled, they might think, like Roger Daltrey: “won’t get fooled again”.
So, let’s say that, tomorrow, it is claimed that ISIS (or whatever Bogeyman du jour) has massacred a bunch of babies, this is intolerable, and we must go off to war. It stands to reason that people who know the historical precedents are far less likely to buy the story. Once you know that they have used these stories about babies to sell more than one war, you will be very loath to accept any similar warmongering story without strong proof. You can also be sure that when you do ask for proof of the story, none will be provided; you will be denounced as a “conspiracy theorist”.
Just as the warmongering propaganda gets recycled over and over, the modus operandi of Deep State operations does not change that much either. If you look at the Kennedy assassination of over fifty years ago, you have a patsy, a designated fall guy who is to be framed for the crime, Lee Harvey Oswald. In the assassination of the black civil rights leader, Martin Luther King, four and a half years later, the patsy was a man named James Earl Ray — like Oswald, another white American. Today, the same pattern is repeated over and over: specialists carry out the operation and one or more patsies are framed for it. Typically, the patsies are killed, giving the authorities quite a bit of liberty to say anything they want afterwards. Nowadays, the patsies are almost invariably Muslims, because that is the Roger Rabbit narrative being pushed.
When a HIQI professes amazement that you could even consider the possibility that deep State agents would commit a crime and then attempt to frame somebody else for it, what he is doing of course, is exposing his own ignorance of history — in a rather cringeworthy fashion.
High IQ Idiots and the Conspiracy Theory Shibboleth
All of this brings us to one key thing about High IQ idiots. Granted, it is subjective in nature, I think it will ring true to most readers:
A HIQI is far far more annoying and obnoxious than a garden variety low IQ idiot.
You see, the conventional idiot, the low IQ idiot, does not typically use his own low IQ as proof of how clever he is. Okay, he may well say something like: “Sure, I was never very good at school but I’m nobody’s fool.” And, fair enough. In my view, that’s actually a reasonable thing to say. But he will just about never say something like: “I don’t understand calculus (or whatever) and that shows how clever I am.”
The high IQ idiot will take his own idiocy, specifically his own inability to see through these Roger Rabbit narratives, as well as his own woeful ignorance of history, as proof that he is more clever than you are! I can only speak for myself, but I find that pretty damned annoying! In fact, it’s so annoying that one can lose one’s cool, when, really, what is needed is to think very coldly and analytically about how to approach this problem.
One of the first issues to discuss in this regard is this whole “conspiracy theory” construct and the associated insult, where they call you a “conspiracy theorist”. Quite typically, this is the only rhetorical weapon they have, and as such, they always pull it out and keep trying to bang away at you with it. In fact, if you can wrest this single weapon from them, they are essentially disarmed. They don’t have anything else!
The most important thing to understand about the CT concept is that it is utterly meaningless. This becomes quite obvious when you ask people for proof of whatever official, Roger Rabbit narrative they are espousing. For example, if you simply ask people to provide proof of the government story of 9/11, without suggesting any alternative theory yourself, you will pretty much invariably be called a “conspiracy theorist” even though you have yourself offered no theory! On reflection, the whole thing is really very odd, because the government story would seem to be a “conspiracy theory”, as it is a theory and it does involve conspirators conspiring. So they propose a conspiracy theory, you request proof of that theory, and they respond to your request by saying that you are a conspiracy theorist!
It is as if, when you say that you don’t believe the stories in the Bible, people were to respond by accusing you of being a religious fanatic!
Eventually, one comes to the understanding that a CT is just any avenue of investigation that the authorities want to discourage you from exploring! And this is the case even if no conspiracy was posited. Or even any theory at all! At various times, I have heard people refer to the proposal that the Federal Reserve should be independently audited as a “conspiracy theory”. I recall Donald Rumsfeld saying that the belief that the Iraq war had something to do with oil (as opposed to the U.S. government’s official explanation, the non-existent WMD’s) was a “conspiracy theory”!
Calling something a CT is simply an illegitimate way of trying to shut down a conversation and it may well be that the most important cultural/intellectual divide in our current day world is between those who realize that and those who don’t. Finally, the only way to deal with this “you’re a conspiracy theorist nya nya” sort of thing must be something analogous to Godwin’s law. I guess I could immodestly propose that this be called “Revusky’s law”:
Anybody who starts with this vacuous nonsense about “conspiracy theories” and/or calls you a “conspiracy theorist” has thereby conceded the debate.
When the HIQI professes his belief in whatever Roger Rabbit narrative, it is up to him to tell you what the proof is for the story. Simply calling you a name, in particular a name that is meaningless anyway, does not cut it.
Overall Tactics: Retaining the Initiative
The above brings us to something that is, properly understood, a more general point that goes beyond the issue directly at hand here. This may seem like a tangent but bear with me.
Across a wide variety of different competitive activities — sports, games and so forth — any proper analysis of strategy and tactics will refer to a very basic concept: the initiative. At any given moment, the person who holds the initiative is the one who is forcing his opponent to react to him, rather than the other way round. Consider, for example, two games that seem, on the face of it, to have absolutely nothing in common: chess and tennis. Nonetheless, there is actually a thread of commonality. In both games, holding the initiative is a huge advantage, at least at a professional level of play. In chess, the white pieces move first, and, in high level play between comparable players, the vast majority of games with a decisive result are won by the player playing white. For broadly similar reasons, in tennis, in a match between players of comparable level, the player who serves in a given game is vastly favored to win that game, because he begins each point holding the initiative.
Looking at this in a very general way, we could say that it is somehow in the nature of things that passivity is rarely a winning strategy in this life. Thus, across a wide variety of games or competitive activities, the expert practitioner will not readily cede the initiative. No, it is the weak, inexperienced player who readily adopts a passive, reactive stance.
This all has a direct application to the topic at hand, which is how to deal with the HIQI’s and their Roger Rabbit narratives. Much to my amazement and exasperation, what I continually observe in debates is that people who really ought to know better make the basic tactical mistake of ceding the initiative to their opponent. Time and again, they allow themselves to be maneuvered into a passive, reactive stance.
This is really quite a striking phenomenon when you examine it. Earlier I introduced the concept of the WOP (Wings On Pigs) narrative. A WOP narrative is so many degrees away from being possible that a full refutation tends to be complete overkill. The flying pig story is impossible because the pig does not have wings and, moreover, even if the pig did have wings, it still would not fly.
So, if you are facing a WOP narrative, how can you fail to win the debate? Well, the first thing to understand is that, if somebody has to use legitimate arguments, based on facts and logic, to defend an absurd story, his position is completely untenable. Or, to use the more lively vernacular, he is up (bull)shit creek without a paddle. And this has a simple logical implication. A position which is indefensible (by definition, really) will not be defended. Your opponent understands (consciously or not) that he cannot defend his stated belief. The only thing he can do is go on the attack. What they will typically do is demand that you tell some alternative story to their flying pigs narrative and then, if you are silly enough to do so, they try to pick holes in your story. So it becomes: “If it wasn’t the official story (flying pigs) then you tell me what happened!”
The answer must be something like: “Sorry, dude, you have to defend the flying pigs story before I tell you any story myself, i.e. I’m not ceding the initiative. So, flying pigs you say… now, could you explain this aspect that I never had clear…. how do these flying pigs, given their body mass, ever get airborne? Have you ever personally seen a pig with wings?” And so on…
A related tactic is when, in response to the most obvious common-sense observation, they will attack your qualifications to say whatever it is. You point out that pigs don’t have wings and they start asking you where you did your ph.D. in zoology. Or if you say that, even if a pig did have wings, it still couldn’t fly, they say: “Well, you obviously have never studied aerodynamics.” Essentially, the idea becomes that, in order to make the most obvious common sense observation about the world — pigs do not fly, bears do shit in the woods…. — you must possess multiple doctorates from M.I.T. or someplace.
Regardless, the underlying point is that, by necessity, they will go on the attack and grasp for some way to make you respond to them. Once you understand the concept of the initiative and apply it to this case, it becomes obvious that you have to make them answer your questions. So, if they’re defending their WOP narrative, you keep the pressure on: “So, pigs may possess wings, you say…. can you point me to any evidence for this?” Or: “You say pigs can fly, eh? Well, that’s fascinating. I can’t find any evidence for this. Can you help me?” Obviously, the defender of a WOP narrative is in a completely untenable position when facing such straightforward questioning and must try to turn the tables and make you respond to him.
So it is with a key event like 9/11. You ask them: “Can you point to any example of a steel-framed high-rise building collapsing in a perfectly symmetrical manner from randomly spreading office fires?” They’re obviously not going to give you the only straight, honest answer which is: “No, steel framed high rise buildings never integrally collapse from randomly spreading fires, and certainly not in a perfectly symmetrical manner.” They have to confuse the issue by trying to make you answer their questions or by attacking your qualifications or something like this.
What tends to happen is that, once you understand the basic game theory here, that you cannot voluntarily cede the initiative, the debate is over very quickly. For example, if you ask any of the defenders of the official 9/11 story a simple question: “Could you please outline the best evidence available that the government story is true — specifically that the attacks of 9/11 were orchestrated by a man named Osama Bin Laden from faroff Afghanistan?” The question is obviously legitimate and a defender of the official story has no excuse for not answering you, yet you will never receive a straightforward answer. If you don’t believe me, go ahead and try it.
At the time of this writing, the recent (November 2015) events in Paris are still quite topical. The French authorities claim now that the terrorist mastermind was a young man, an ethnic Arab named Abdelhamid Abaaoud. Here are the photos of this “mastermind” that appear from a google image search.
We should strive not to speak ill of the dead, but look at the photos: does this fearsome terrorist mastermind look capable of masterminding the tying of his own shoelaces? I think not. Now, people can jump on me and say that one should not judge a book by its cover. After all these Ay-rabs are devious, and Abdelhamid, in all these photos, may have just been pretending to be a dork.
Well, in all honesty, one must concede that this is possible. Still, my response to this is that if you say that the above pictured kid was the mastermind of these terrorist attacks, I’m going to demand the proof from you. And said “proof” really should not be one or more of:
- They told me on the TV that he was the mastermind, so he was.
- It’s true unless you can demonstrate that it’s false, i.e. you ask me to prove the negative.
- You’re a conspiracy theorist nya nya.
The basic concept here is this: if somebody is peddling whatever Roger Rabbit narrative, that Jihadi John and Jihadi Joseph are real individuals, this kid Abdelhamid Ibn Oswald was a great terrorist mastermind, or some other folks bayoneted some babies just for the pure fun of it — then they have to tell you what specifically the proof of this is. You cannot let them turn the tables on you and put you in a defensive position.
This essay has been an attempt to address a very broad topic of discussion. To do so, I have introduced some novel terminology and concepts. One such is the RRN, which is the Roger Rabbit Narrative, in which cartoon elements are superimposed on reality. There is BDQ, the Bullshit Detection Quotient, the ability to see through the bullshit, which is a form of intelligence that does not seem very correlated with IQ. And then there is HIQI, the acronym for “High IQ Idiot”, which refers to people with a combination of high IQ and low BDQ.
When I showed earlier drafts of this article to some people, one comment I got back was that I should think twice about some of this terminology — well, in particular, HIQI.
You see, apparently, the conventional wisdom is that, if you want to win friends and influence people, you shouldn’t call them idiots. Yeah, that is probably a pretty well founded rule of thumb. So if I consciously break that rule and use the dreaded “I-word”, there ought to be a good reason. Or reasons. So let me explain.
First of all, I have not wanted for this article to be a pure exercise in venting my own frustrations. Since all of this is so utterly exasperating, that is an easy trap to fall into. I wanted to avoid that and actually write something useful. So, no, the novel terminology and concepts I have introduced, such as HIQI or BDQ, are not meant as throwaway insults. No, I really am trying to provide some useful framework of analysis. Really. But one problem is that if you are going to inform people that, unfortunately, they believe that cartoons are real, it is actually rather hard to sugar-coat this. I could not think of a euphemism that avoided the I-word, at least without using another term that is at least as derogatory. In fact, nobody who objected to my HIQI terminology ever proposed an alternative term.
But the thing is that I really am not trying to be derisive or scornful towards the people I refer to as HIQIs. No, because I make no bones about the fact that I myself was, by my own definition, a HIQI for most of my life. I believed all the bullshit too. So I understand. And I sympathize.
At the beginning of this essay, I linked the outrageous fight scene in the movie “They Live” and I said that I understood the scene much better now than when I first saw the movie when it came out so many years ago. Of course I understand why the character does not want to put on those sunglasses and see the world as it really is! Of course I do! It’s really depressing to put on those sunglasses or take that red pill and see the world as it actually is!
Now, the other side of this is that, when, for whatever reason, something snaps and you join the reality community, it is a real intellectual adventure. It’s exciting to learn, to start connecting the dots and understand things that you didn’t have the conceptual tools to understand before. But then the problem still is that what you do learn tends to be profoundly depressing. To realize what a rotten, corrupt society you live in is a real bummer. It’s not just realizing the truth about all the false flag terrorism. Sites like this one introduced me to economic analysis of people like Michael Hudson or Paul Craig Roberts and I started to understand how much of our economic order is utterly fraudulent. Sophisticated looting operations, Ponzi schemes basically, blowing bubbles and popping the bubbles and bailing out the fraudsters with public money. What are basically loan sharking schemes as you see there with Greece and other countries. Throughout it all there is a common theme, what Ron Unz calls “American Pravda”, the realization that the professional class that, in principle, is supposed to be informing you about the world, is devoted to lying and covering it all up. And heck, it’s not even normal lies in many cases. It’s the Roger Rabbit narratives, where people are pretending that cartoons are real! How utterly exasperating and infuriating is that?
So, yes. Hell yes. I now understand why the character in “They Live” fights like a possessed maniac to avoid putting on those sunglasses! And I understand why the people I refer to as HIQI’s are so resistant to being told the truth about a host of matters.
So, the point of this is not simply to heap scorn on the people I’m calling HIQI’s. I understand them. I was one myself.
The other thing this essay is not meant to be is some sort of call to the barricades. I myself am getting a bit too old to man any barricade. But to tell the truth, even at a younger age, physical courage and martial prowess were never my calling card. Anyway, if I was going to call on people to man the barricades, I’d have to know where said barricades are and also be able to make the case that manning them would do some good.
Still, I have used martial imagery right in the title, “battling” the Matrix — i.e. confronting the pervasive bullshit. So I am saying that this is a war. Of a sort. And a war has battles and skirmishes. Of a sort. To the extent that the analogy is valid, you do have to think about strategy and tactics.
I’m certain that if you study the great military leaders of history, Julius Caesar and Napoleon Bonaparte and the like, you see that they don’t engage in battle for its own sake. The goal is not to to engage in battle, or even to win battles per se. The goal is to win the war. In short, you only engage in battle when it makes sense to do so.
In our personal lives, we will interact socially or professionally with people who believe in all the Roger Rabbit narratives, and when you say you don’t believe it, the people will disdainfully call you a “conspiracy theorist”. Uh-huh, yeah, been there, done that… Certainly, there are cases where the situation can get sufficiently nasty and the people are so obviously a lost cause anyway, that there is little to do but to let the matter slide.
So, on the one hand, yes, I feel strongly that there is a real moral imperative in this life to stand up for the truth. That, after all, is why I wrote this essay. However, one cannot really advocate what amounts to pointless, self-destructive behavior.
I guess what it finally comes down to is that, in this infowar, like in a conventional war, you don’t engage in battle for its own sake, if nothing can be achieved. But if you judge that this is the right spot and you do opt to go into battle, you need a good understanding of the nature of the enemy, the basic strategy and tactics, and also the overall lay of the land. So, in this essay, I’ve tried to present some ideas in this regard. It’s not the last word on the topic, really more like an attempt to start a conversation.
Fan mail (as well as hate mail) can be directed to revusky at heresycentral.