The Inverted Ambiguity of the Post-Modern Public, or Not


One of the interesting things about living during the completion, which simultaneously means the inversion, of metaphysics, is that all the basic metaphyical positions are inverted. Once you understand this, reality itself, particularly social reality, makes a little bit more sense. Not that it ever makes a lot of sense, if all of a sudden “everything makes sense” it’s probably time to see a psychiatrist, because you’ve lost contact with reality altogether.

The most naive of people in the west to day are those that consider themselves scientifically enlightened (think of the phenomenal naivety of Sagan or DeGrasse Tyson), while the most cynical are the fundamentalists, who startt from a tacit admission that naive mechanistic science is all completely true, and proceed to completely ignore it and use whatever is available that will get them ahead materially.

The only “true believers” left are the atheists. The most superstitious people left in the west are the material reductionists. The most pragmatic of people are religious leaders, whiile technologists are the most mystical. Even within the sciences, the most insistent physicalists are in the sciences that ostensibly study the mind, such as cognitive science and psychology, while the most idealist of sciences, that even posits matter itself as nothing but a symbolic idea, is physics. The most pure ideology is found in the world of finance and accounting, while the only pragmatic politicians left are the socialists.

If you take Republican opposition to scientific evidence as mere ignorance, you’ve missed the clue train. In studies where scientific questions are posed with qualifiers such as ‘scientists believe’, or ‘most scientists think that’, fundamentalist Republican science-denyers score twice as high on average in terms of their actual knowledge of science as pro-science liberals do. Nearly all the dictatorial mercenaries are American educated. Nobody has the equivalent disdain for the World as ecologists. Finally, it is “humanists” who most consistently reduce human beings to “nothing but” whatever oversimplification they happen to favour.

On top of this, the ambiguity inherent in publicness has become itself ambiguous, so that not only can it be ambiguous whether someone is completely naive or fully understands something, truly believes something or is just using it for personal advantage, etc., that very ambiguity is inconsistent: at time it appears fully ambiguous, at others that it is clearly one or the other, in the same person insofar as they are public.

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