Clarifying PEMES II

Freespeak (
Sun, 22 Mar 1998 06:32:06 -0700

.[Note: Earlier parts of the peme debate --
including the "peme rules" -- can be found
at: '#TL075: Pemes = Political Memes' --
and '#TL076: The Twilight of the Phobocrats' --
which are periodically updated.]

At 02:53 PM 3/21/98 -0500, "Karl R. Peters" <> wrote:
>Scarily enough, I actually agree with 'Freespeak' on something...
>On Fri, 20 Mar 1998, Freespeak wrote:
>> Consider the possibility that in the same way
>> the fish lives in an environment where the
>> primary element is water, you live in a world
>> where the primary element is words. The fish
>> lives in a water culture and you live in a
>> word culture.
>This is *definitely* true. Many of our problems are caused
>not so much by other people as simply by the way we *all*
>look at the world, and plow into each other blindly.
>Think of it this way. Either we can get into massive fights
>every time we get into an accident at a road crossing, or we
>can erect traffic lights to help us avoid one another. The
>former is continuing to use non-productive ideas ("moral obligation",
>"free-will", "God", "materialism") to guide our behavior, while
>the latter is discovering some new way to think which causes
>the old problems to become *irrelevant*.

At 07:33 PM 3/20/98 GMT, wrote:
>> The following is from
>> <>:
>> "The breakthrough in memetics is in extending
>> Darwinian evolution to culture. There are several
>> exciting conclusions from doing that, one of which
>> is the ability to predict that ideas will spread
>> not because they are "good ideas," but because they
>> contain "good memes" such as danger, food and sex
>> that push our evolutionary buttons and force us to
>> pay attention to them."
>Cool insight!
>It has occured to me that one clarifying principle
>so far missing from the peme discussion is that many
>of the memes we are calling "pemes" have very positive
>uses in human behavior. A good example is the "protect
>the children" memes. Clearly it's necessary for our
>race to do just this, protect the children, and we
>have a genetic predisposition to do so. It's only
>logical that "memes" indicating how to do this should
>evolve and be transmitted.
>So when we go about protecting kids under our own
>motivation and in an appropriate context, the memes
>involved don't justify being classified as "pemes"
>-- they're not being used for political purposes
>It's when the memes are invoked by political cliques
>to manipulate or as an excuse to steal, for THAT
>PARTICULAR USE of the "protect the children" memes,
>etc., they can usefully be called "pemes."

Yes! There's a whole range of survival memes which,
if hijecked by phobocrats for nefarious purposes,
become surface pemes.

>Further, it is this confusion -- having legitimate
>instincts and memes labeled with the same symbol but
>used for BOTH "positive" and "negative" purposes --
>that makes it so difficult to separate the political
>cliques from the power they can get from invoking them.

Good point! Phobocrats are very good at using survival
memes to "justify" their coercive actions. To the
superficial "masses" anyone who questions phobocrat
programs can be branded a "child hater," "job
destroyer," etc.

>...I would suggest the same logic applies to
>ALL "pemes" whether "deep" or "surface." The
>logic's just, probably, more difficult to apply
>to presumably more subtle "deep pemes."...

The most powrful deep pemes depend on their survival
for the bicameral need for "external authorities"
-- see <>.

>...The strong "political" memes must, if the above
>logic is correct, count for their strength on
>hijacking pre-existing human instincts...

We could call the bicameral need for idols a
primitive human instinct. The Follower worships
idols; the Rebel hates and tries to fight them.
(The Deep Anarchist seeks to expose their falsity.)

>In general, strong political memes work by evoking
>instinctive behavior, often by a simple S-R (semantic
>shorthand for signal-response or stimulus-response)
>I would also suggest that it's possible so-called
>"deep pemes" may make people confronting them
>uncomfortable because such a confrontation might
>challenge deeper needs for a feeling of "stability,"
>which can be severely challenged by reductionist
> "Our raw material consisted merely of events;
> but when we find that we can build out of it
> something which, as measured, will seem to be
> never created or destroyed, it is not surprising
> that we should come to believe in "bodies."
> These are really mere mathematical constructions
> out of events, but owing to their permanence
> they are practically important and our senses
> (which were presumably developed by biological
> needs) are adapted for noticing them, rather
> than the crude continuum of events which is
> theoretically more fundamental." -- Bertrand
> Russell, 'ABC of Relativity,' pg. 117.
>The implications of such insights seem to sometimes
>evoke some sort of "terror of chaos," or something in
>some people. Perhaps such fears are more common than
>I think?

Maybe at certain levels of development, human consciousness
takes the form of an interdependent network of basic
concepts, such that if any one concept is threatened,
then the threat tends to be perceived as being against
the whole of consciousness. "If I lose this one precious
deep peme, then my entire consciousness will collapse."

For many people, this may apply for deep pemes such as
"society," "constitution," "president," "emperor," etc.

At 03:36 PM 3/21/98 EST, ARTSCHOLBE <> wrote:
>Nice thoughts, Fred, but neither you nor Jason will
>ever be free as long as the state can grant special
>privilege to the few at the expense of the many. Right
>now, you, all of us, and our progeny, owe someone
>for the right to place our foot on the earth from the day
>that we were born. And that never stops. In fact, if
>those who hold title to the land decided not to allow
>you to set foot on it, you would not be able to earn
>a living in any form, or find shelte for the night. Does
>that sound like freedom to you? Or do you like living
>out of a packing case over a grate?

The peme program has spoken.

The fish can't be free, unless all the sharks have been

Poor victim ARTSCHOLBE can't be free because the big bad
ogre "state" grants privileges to the horrible exploiting
few at his expense.

Poor ARTSCHOLBE lives in a world in which there are no
privileges, except those granted by the big bad ogre
"state" and by the horrible exploiting few.

Poor ARTSCHOLBE is at constant risk of greedy, selfish
landowners revoking his permission to be on their land,
condemming him to live "out of a packing case over a
grate. "What a shame!

Poor ARTSCHOLBE doesn't know how to grant himself even
greater privileges than those supposedly granted by the
big bad ogre "state." What a shame!

Now imagine that you're a deep peme called "state,"
sitting on a throne in ARTSCHOLBE's brain in the form
of the top-dog mind parasite. What attitudes would you
want to induce in your victim? Abject helplessness?
And what would you want your victim to say? What
messages would you want poor ARTSCHOLBE to spread?

Frederick Mann

"The [one] who knows what freedom is will find a way to be free."
-- Robert LeFevre
"We are free not because we claim freedom, but because we practice it."
-- William Faulkner
"The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed."
-- Steve Biko
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