23 February 2013

How food handling regulations at the Belga Café create surprising frictions with customers

- by the emperor

Dr. Henry A. Murray, Analysis of the Personality of Adolph Hitler: With Predictions of His Future Behavior and Suggestions for Dealing with Him Now and After Germany's Surrender 

I haven't looked into it, and won't do so in the near future as I have other things to do. But from the little bit I can see right away I will only look into it to see how close they come to what people like Eric Voegelin or Karl Kraus already saw in the 1930s. The Americans had Eric Voegelin at their disposal starting from 1938, but he didn't like the East Coast establishment very much and went to work in other places. Eric Voegelin explains it very clearly in his 1964 lectures: there were of course quite a number of decent Germans, people who weren't taken in at all by his so-called charisma and saw him for what he was, "ein Trottel". When some of those came into direct contact with Hitler, it was typically a one-time event, Hitler didn't want to repeat it. That's exactly the William Blake quote on Richard Landes's masthead. ["Always be ready to speak your mind and a base man will avoid you." - William Blake, 1796]

The kind of question I find interesting is how this sort of dialogue could also be established in public discourse. In other words, how the leaders of the other powers could have recreated that situation in which Hitler would have been exposed as "ein Trottel" to the world. A thing that would have induced decent Germans to feel less helpless. So that they might have been encouraged to come out with their exact same opinion about Hitler, and would possibly have been able to simply shame him into resignation. If you think that that is just speculative dreaming and not applicable to the real world, you must also realise that you are actually saying that politics always and everywhere is like war, and that there is simply nothing we can do about that, at all.

I'm quite certain that the fundamental reason why foreign leaders did not succeed in exposing Hitler to the world as an idiot is that they never even thought of trying to do that. And they never even thought of trying to do that because they couldn't see him as an idiot themselves. Which says a lot about them, about politics, and about the crime story that was the nazi-period. And the same stupidity is being played out again for 65 years now in world politics, with Israel being just one of the more obvious examples.

Democratic politics is dangerous. Very dangerous. Especially as long as people are unable to see that it is not the best available option. Which they aren't as far as I can tell. In that same café, I met an Englishman with his wife, and showed him my piece on "Natural law and Nietzsche's discovery of the individual; or how it is not the madness of the prophet that is the problem, but his godforsaken self-righteousness and disrespect of the natural law". Asking him whether it made any sense to him. He said it did. But then immediately continued saying that it would never be enough, because we live in a society, and simply leaving people to their own devices is something we definitely shouldn't do, the law of the jungle would prevail, etc, etc. His wife weighed in to explain the benefits of social security and publicly funded education. I tend to be distracted in cafés, and simply forgot to ask them the question: fine with me, but why don't you give us backward people who would like to go back to the 13th century the opportunity to opt out of your beneficial system? Well, as I forgot to ask the question, I can't tell you their answer. But I'm sure they have one. An answer that is somewhat similar to that of the prophet: if you're not with us, you're against us, and we will deal with you accordingly. See how dangerous it is?

There was another nice girl in that café, working, preparing the food behind a counter, in an almost transparent light t-shirt showing her bra and beautiful breasts. When I came back to her to ask for more bread because I was hungry, she started to do complicated things with gloves on her hands and a pincer, while there was a whole pile of baguette ends they are apparently instructed to discard right in front of her. I stopped her: just give me some of those, I like crusts. She reluctantly dropped the pincer, and grudgingly gave me what I wanted with her gloved hands. I must find a way to make up with her the next time I'm hungry in that café. 

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