Archive for the ‘Messing With The Heads Of The Prey’ Category

Neural Subversion

There is a science fiction story in which a future aristocracy dominates in part by means of mudras, or a language of voice, posture and gesture that automatically elicits awe, obedience and other desired emotions. This may only be an extension of present truth. Although youngsters fiercely resent being told to stop slouching and sit […]

The Myth Of Conscience

They tell us that depression is correlated with low social status or loss of social status. This would logically imply that satisfaction, indeed mental health, is correlated with high social status or gain of it. If self-acceptance is wholly a function of social rank, however, though, is there any place for conscience? If the high-status […]

On Morality and Environments

According to Mark Hauser of Harvard, human brains have a separate morality module. We learn, however different morality packages in different environments. Individualism and confrontation are the appropriate responses to a stable environment, he says, while collectivism and conformity to an unstable one. Well, he seems to be thinking of the instability in terms of […]

Grifter Epistemology

Despite the plot of the film Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, it has been said that every expert con-man immediately recognises another one. This means that the competent grifter has a different take on television evangelists, alternative healers and Deconstructionist professors than the rest of us; he wastes no time whatsoever wondering about the validity of their […]

Born, Not Made

People are so busy pointing out the various reasons why the film Basic Instinct is crap that they appear to have missed one. Catherine Tramell is portrayed as a world-class manipulator because she has a psychology degree. This tells us two things about the scriptwriters’ view of psychology as an academic discipline: what they think […]

Suffering From One’s Virtue

Homo sapiens is a predator. This does not mean merely that he eats meat, and kills to do so; nor even that he slays his own kind. The characteristic human form of predation is messing with the heads of designated prey, so that the food animals allow themselves to be predated in an orderly fashion. […]

You’re So Selfish!

Those of us who forever find ourselves stigmatised as “selfish”, despite all our efforts not to tread unduly on the toes of our fellow-creatures, may perhaps be excused for wondering what this word actually means and what its antonym might be. No society can endure without a modicum of “unselfishness”, that is, people putting themselves […]

Living For Others

Another term of reproach, “self-centred”, implies that we should all be others-centred, living for others. Perhaps it is merely further proof of our self-centredness that some of us wonder how such a thing is possible. Where else could or should a person’s centre be but in his self? I look out from my eyes, not […]

The Wickedness Of The Victim

Our confessional culture has taught us a very strange idea: namely, the moment I have told you about a great wrong that I have done you, it ceases to be my problem, and the only topic of discussion thereafter is your reaction to my misdeed. I am then allowed to treat your reaction as if […]

Posted on October 31, 2009 at 11:11 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · 4 Comments
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Messing With The Heads Of The Prey

You Give Me No Choice

A staple rhetorical device of the kidnapper and hostage-taker is that his deeds are in fact our own deeds. He tells us that if we do not pay the ransom or accede to his demands, the death of his captive will be our responsibility and not his. In terms of moral philosophy that is, of […]