After studying the works of Robert Anton Wilson for over 20 years, i can't shake this general love for all humanity and the ongoing practice of tolerance and forgiveness, at the heart of his works. When his daughter was beaten to death, and they found the culprit, he and his wife did not call for the death penalty. Instead, they managed to find it within themselves to forgive, and even love the murderer. I wonder why forgiveness can make many people so angry? who continue to bang the drums of retribution?
I get the impression from social media, especially Facebook, that this angry mob have studied torture techniques, writing without missing a beat, of what they would 'do' to their enemies. Anything like a fair trial, or non-violent punishment is simply out of the question for them. Angry people full of hate want to get even and inflict an equal amount of suffering upon their enemies. The cycle of violence and retaliation continues. The work of RAW has been a countermeasure to this kind of certitude, and hate fueled ignorance. I sincerely wish more people would read his work, and have the courage to act upon it.
I do not expect an immediate change in the minds of the people that most matter to me, after this UK election tomorrow. These people are those i know who choose to vote conservative, and in particular those who lean to the right (and are not rich) rich to mean, say, own property worth over half a million quid! Of course, dude, the concept of rich is relative. r e l a t i v e. I have a few rich friends who i respect and admire, and who are not nasty or ignorant, i want to add.
Compared with most of the world, the poorest people in the UK are pretty well off. Yet, at the other end you have the billionaires, who it's easy for me to understand, may have an interest in voting for whoever is best for their business. Self interest is a natural human condition, i understand and i can respect you. Good luck. Yet, those few who seem to have a hatred for Corbyn and the left principles of social justice, human rights, national basic income etc, and who exhibit a hatred stronger than their love for the conservatives baffle me. A typical line i hear is 'they're all liars' and then...'I'll never vote for that...insert ad-hominem waffle...' about Corbyn. Like something straight off the front page of The Daily Mail, The Sun. You know what I'm talking about: tabloid news for the sad droid blues.
One common thread between both ends of this conservative voting, that i have noticed, is that both the rich and strategically smart, and the relatively poor and angry (my own binary division) become ignorant to what they don't 'like', or don't agree with. They tend to show a low tolerance for new information (neophobes) Don't get me wrong now, dear readers, cognitive bias, media bias, and the conceit of scholars are not limited to conservatives. This seems to me like one major truth for us all to face: we colour and make the world as we like it, editing out what we want (usually simply what we don't like) both consiously and subconsciously, way more than we often realize. 'we are all greater artists than we realize' as Nietzche said.
An explicit example of this bias or ignorance seems to me to occur in the conservative right-wing, the ugly argumentative methods (you couldn't really call it debate) act more in line with the concept of fillabusting, at the high-brow end, combined with some neuro-linguistic programming and a shit load of data-intelligence (a.k.a Cambridge Analytica) for good measure. A powerful mixture. Oh, and lets not forget the rude and violent trolling which many alt-right groups (high and low-brow) have perfected recently.
Yes, the left (and those perpendicular to the left/right axis) also do this, but, perhaps in the tradition of Paul Krassner, Lenny Bruce, Bill Hicks, Robert Anton Wilson, Steve Coogan and other social activists. Their taste and sense for wit, even at the worst of moments, remains funny as hell to me. I am biased of course.