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(45) Gelb



I dislike the common right-wing argument that the left is “incompetent”—perhaps this is because I fear I am incompetent, yet, nonetheless, I feel I am correct in this regard. Stalin died in his bed with the Soviet Union and world Communism more powerful than ever—I struggle to characterise him as incompetent. I struggle to characterise the KGB as incompetent. Actually, I even struggle to characterise the progressive left and the “clownish” LGBT movement as incompetent—after all, they have achieved a great many of their goals, whereas the right has (incompetently?) failed to stop them. Well, perhaps they are incompetent at “real” activities, their political acts are substitutes because they are incompetent at activities that create value—yet their success seems to indicate a certain competence that must be generally transferable…


Wisdom of child, idiocy of adolescent: the world is not complicated—when the ten-year-old says, “It’s because they’re bad men,” he is correct. When the teenager says, “You need to consider socio-economic conditions—you need to look at the structures of society, it’s really complicated. Look, I have a YouTube video that explains it,” he is wrong. The problem is that most people never move beyond adolescence, they just get better and more plausible about the “multi-variant factors” that supposedly cause negative events to happen; and I think the “competence” argument is one more adolescent attempt to look sophisticated (“I got more As on my exams than him.” Nah-Nah).


The competence argument is ultimately a practical dodge for the more metaphysical—therefore, unscientific—assertion that some people are evil. I have been reading up on serial killers lately, and the true-crime journalists who write the factual novels about murderers always engage in psycho-theory about “why” the killer is that way. The answer is more simple: they are born with a bad character, born evil. At age three, Ted Bundy stole into his sister’s bedroom while she slept—she awoke to find herself surrounded by sharp knives…Age three. Wisdom of child.


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