Mid-March Elon Musk rocked the Twitter styrofoam raft by posting a recent version of the NPC meme:
Myself I think it’s good to have Elon around: a national figure who says what he thinks rather than spreads wokisms.
And I like the NPC meme, though I find it toothless given where we're at. Since this is a serious article, I’ll explain myself via pro wrestling. Yup, serious. It's a post I saw today. Someone wrote:
Remember when everyone knew pro wrestling was fake and they finally admitted it and the fans continued to watch it anyway?“We’re not almost there,” I replied. “We’re already there, and have been for years. Worse, this fakery is not a bug, but a feature.”
We’re almost there with politics and the media.
All around us fake news is known to be fake but is still aggressively touted as news. And oddly, it’s our “educated” who are most adamant about touting it. This didn’t use to be the case. I'm old enough to remember when it wasn't. So how did we get here?
I can answer that question. It's the universities, stupid.
In classrooms and seminars across the country, academics have for decades been teaching that “there is no truth, only narratives". I won’t go into the intellectual background of the doctrine. But starting in the 1980s, our left took it and ran with it.
"No truth, only narratives" has since trickled down and oozed beyond the campuses. It's seeped into every corner of American culture. And it's changed the way Americans process reality. As follows: A huge swath of the citizenry now watches news not to find out what is really happening, but only to find out what Today's Narrative is. For millions, what is really happening is tacitly assumed to be irrelevant.
It’s hard for a lot of us on the right to really grasp this. But we need to grasp it, because this is the country we live in.
We call them NPCs and think they're dumb sheep--but by doing so we ignore what they're about. Because for them, to be sheep, sheep out to trample all others into silence, is the very meaning of being educated. It’s what their whole education has taught them to do and what all their peers do 24/7.
Which is what makes the NPC meme toothless. At least to them. Because it’s not that our NPCs are especially dumb, but rather that they're deeply indifferent to the facts underlying the social realities in question. They are entirely creatures of the Narrative, they know they are, and they're even proud to be so because they assume the Narrative tends to "the right side of history”.
This latter idea of the "right side of history" is perhaps the only Truth our lefties still subscribe to: they believe in Progress religiously.
And here, if you’re paying attention, you’ll maybe see that we’ve caught them in deep self-contradiction, because the claim that progress is inevitable, that it’s somehow built in to history, is a truth claim. Here, in other words, is where our lefties truly are dumb.
But good luck trying to get that point across. The Enlightenment myth of progress is so deeply embedded in the modern world that almost no one recognizes it as a myth. Especially not our lefties, who breathe it through their cloth masks as their very air.
We've now tens of millions of these people. They're scaling the ladders in every corporation and instution. Since the point for them is to enact the Narrative, calling them NPCs carries no sting. As you may have noticed. They'll just bleat at you--Baaahhh--and move on. Because as they see it, it’s you who are backward to stick to that outmoded concept: truth. To stick to things like facts, constitutions, law, transparent elections.
This is also, by the way, why it’s become impossible to debate our leftists, as you also may have noticed. If there’s no truth, and if it’s virtuous to believe there isn’t, what weight will be given to “evidence” or “reasoned debate” or “analysis” or “statistics”? Our lefties officially don’t care about such things. Debating them is wasted time, and has been since about 2010. They won’t recognize defeat, because they never recognized the validity of reasoned argument to begin with.
So if our politics and media now seem to have no more reality than pro wrestling, and if the mainstream “virtuous” voices keep cheering ever louder, you can blame our fallen universities. They made it possible. And the triumphal march of that key claim "there is no truth" was made all the easier because it played off the Deadly Sin called sloth. Anyone who spends time around our academies can attest this: laziness has played an enormous role in our cognitive decline. Because whether you're an academic or a student, it’s much easier to enact narratives than to seek truth. It’s also much easier to bend to the Narrative than to defend any truth that is unpopular. And since the postmodernism that rules our universities gives our lefties “intellectual” cover for being lazy in just this way, why not just go with it? All the kids at the cool table are.
Calling them NPCs is accurate, sure. But the malaise runs deeper than just dumbness + conformity. It derives from a systemic discrediting of truth in favor of narrative. How we might proceed is a more difficult question, but that we’re dealing with a large and now dominant “post-truth” culture is a brutal fact we have to face. I'd say the best use of our energies is in building an alternative education system, whether through homeschooling or classical schools.
More on how we got here:
The Left is a Religion
Fakes upon Fakes: Why the Left has Become so Completely Daft
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