John C. Wright's JournalJohn C. Wright's Journal http://www.scifiwright.com Fancies, Drollery and Fiction from honorary Houyhnhnm and antic Science Fiction Writer John C. Wright Tue, 23 Sep 2014 20:27:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 Who is John Galt? http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/who-is-john-galt-2/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/who-is-john-galt-2/#comments Tue, 23 Sep 2014 14:37:39 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12389

Mr. Obama will not speak to you tonight. His time is up. I have taken it over. You were to hear a report on the world crisis. That is what you are going to hear.

For twelve years, you have been asking: Who is John Wright? This is John Wright speaking. I am the man who loves his soul. I am the man who does not sacrifice his love or his values. I am the man who has deprived you of excuses and thus has destroyed your world, and if you wish to know why you are perishing — you, who dread knowledge — I am the man who will now tell you.

You have heard it said that this is an age of moral crisis. You have said it yourself, half in fear, half in hope that the words had no meaning. You have cried that man’s sins are destroying the world and you have cursed human nature for its unwillingness to practice the virtues you demanded. Since virtue, to you, consists of unreason, you have demanded more unreason at every successive disaster.

I just saw the final of the ATLAS SHRUGGED film trilogy, and my reaction to the movie is mixed. I give them high grades for their effort, for their loyalty to the original book. This film was made by fans of the book who understood its point. That is rare enough to be worth trumpeting.

I give them below average grades, however, for their execution. This was like a cheap, made-for-TV movie.

No one not a fan of the book is likely to go seen this film, or even know it is in theaters. Hollywood and the media seem to be in full blown ignore-the-pariah mode when it comes to ATLAS SHRUGGED.

The plot concerns the downfall of a corrupt and socialist future America which results when the capitalists, inventors, entrepreneurs and men of ambition all go on strike, leaving the people who call them exploiters free to be no longer exploited, which means, no longer employed.

The idea, to borrow a phrase from Margaret Thatcher, is to see what happens to socialists, of both the economic and the spiritual kind, when other peoples’ money runs out, as when these other people stop running the motor of the world.

The plot revolves around the love triangle between a beautiful female railroad executive named Dagny Taggart, and unhappily married steel magnate named Hank Reardon, and a superhuman philosopher-scientist and adventurer named Doc Savage.

Savage has been persuading the virtuous industrialists and self-made men to retreat his Fortress of Solitude hidden under a holographic forcefield in the Rocky Mountains; Dagny enters by mistake, her plane engine knocked out by the forcefield, and crashlands, is bruised, and while she recovers in Doc Savage’s house, gets a job as his housekeeper, and finds she must decide between this secret small world of those who think like her, and the outside world which is degenerating rapidly into socialist hellhole.

Let me discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Doc-Savage-2

John Galt (foreground). From Left to Right (rear): Richard Halley, supercomposer, Hugh Akston, superphilosopher, Ellis Wyatt, superoilman, Judge Narragansett, superjurist, Midas Mulligan, superbanker

THE GOOD

The good was that the movie makers respected and followed the source material, so any fan of the book is likely to see at least one of his favorite scenes or hear one of his favorite lines. While the three hour long John Galt speech is replaced by a five minute advertisement, at least it is there. The main philosophical point of Ayn Rand’s message is absent, but the main emotional and dramatic point is there.

The adaptation made two small changes of which I wholly approve.

First, Ayn Rand’s atheism, which is logically necessary for her philosophy,  but which is a distracting excrescence in her drama, is thankfully dropped. I call it a distraction from her drama, because the main plot conflict is between free market freethinkers and collectivist socialist hypocrites. In real life, the socialists are allied with the atheists, and the Christians are allied with the free marketeers. In her book, having the socialist lumped in with their hated enemies the Christians as the foes of the atheist free marketeers (a creature as rare as a unicorn) was a jarring note.

Second, in the book, Eddy Willers left, forgotten by the supermen, to die in the desert next to the hulk of an abandoned train which he lacks the knowledge to restore to motion. This always seemed pointlessly cruel that he should not be allowed into Narnia at the end, since, unlike Susan, he never ignored the values of free thought and free markets for the sake of lipsticks, nylons, and party invitations. By that, I mean, of course, that he was no enemy to the Objectivist Industrialists on Strike, and could have joined them as a useful and productive member of their new society, so there was no moral point to the writer merely letting the shipwreck of civilization drown him. There was plenty of room in the lifeboat.

The movie rectifies this needless cruelty.

THE BAD

The bad is that the script was leaden and paint-by-numbers. It hit the plot points from the book in a workmanlike but unimaginative fashion, but not taking any advantage of the visual medium of the movies.

There was one tiny exception: the physician who went on strike when medicine was socialized takes out a small handheld x-ray and diagnostic machine. It shows visually the kind of thing the outside world is losing due to its philosophy of punishing success. But this one tiny exception makes the lack of any imagination used in the film adaption all the more poignant.

(There was likewise a single example of an imaginative adaption in the previous film, when the heroine pumps a tank of gas and it costs 800 dollars. That was a moment which used a visual image to smite the audience with a gut-level understanding of how bad the ‘Ameritopia’ of the socialist ‘brother’s-keeper’ types were.)

One tiny visual clue the movie makers put in the film, however, which I adored, was that the Seal of the President, in the spirit of the book, read ‘Head of State’ and the name of the nation was ‘The People’s State of America’ not the United States.

The adaptation threw the entire love triangle between Doc Savage, Hank Rearden, and Dagny Taggart overboard. Hank Rearden does not appear in the film at all, except as a ten-second voiceover of a farewell phone call heard during an overhead traveling shot of a train in motion. This would be on the same magnitude of bad writing as if Margaret Mitchell were to have Ashley Wilkes fall into a well and die offstage, leaving Scarlett free to wed Rhett without second thoughts, or dramatic tension.

The filmmakers do indeed have Cheryl Taggart, the deceived and hero-worshiping wife of the main character’s worthless brother, die offstage, without even mentioning that she commits suicide when the full horror of the collectivist world-view and its backward moral code is revealed to her in all its hellish ugliness. The film makers did not even include  a one-second shot of her jumping off a pier.

The adaptation junked the idea of the soundwave weapon Project X from the book, and instead had the Oppenheimer-based character, Robert Stadler, have his crisis of conscience when he discovers his research is being used to produce an electroshock torture machine. This was wholly insufficient for the plot purposes. A scientist discovering his work in atomic theory has been used to make a terrifying death-ray able to level cities, now turned on the civilians to enslave them is dramatic. A scientist discovering that a car battery is being used to deliver shocks to a prisoner on the rack is just silly.

Even more bad was the fact that the heroes were all horribly, horribly, horribly miscast. The actress Laura Regan, while she did her work bravely, simply lacked the scene presence of Taylor Schilling, who played the role of Dagny in the first film, and both lacked the ability to portray the book character.

neal_patricia2The role required an actress of the stature of Patricia Neal, who accurately captured the soul of Dominique Francon in the 1949 film production of THE FOUNTAINHEAD.

 

patricia-neal

The actor selected to play the superhuman inventor, Kristoffer Polaha, was pretty and pretty young, and looked more like a model for the cover of a romance novel — which, perhaps, is what the author intended. His lines were so good, that about half the time, he looked like the leader of men and the captain of industry and the shaker of empires that he was supposed to be. The other half of the time he looked like a Soap Opera hero.

gary cooper

The role should have gone to someone like Russel Crowe, or better yet, Gary Cooper.

neal and cooper

Francisco D’Anconia should have been played by Antonio Bandaras or a young Ricardo Montalban. Instead they got a guy who looks like my father in law, a genial older man with a big nose.

Ragnar Djanneskjold was a guy in a knit cap, and he was supposed to be Basil Rathbone or Tyrone Power.

Eddie Willers was supposed to be a small, rabbity man. The actor is a magnificent giant with a bald head who looks like a marine.

Ellis Wyatt, who was played to perfection by Graham Beckel in the first film, and stole every scene he appeared in, was replaced by an actor with a mustache named Lew Temple, so instead of Ellis Wyatt from the book, we got Slim Pickens. Again, no offense is meant to Mr. Temple, who did his work in a workmanlike fashion, but he was cast for the wrong role.

On the other hand, the villains were perfectly cast. Every line and look, every nuance and gesture was authentic. I have never seen such a perfect portrayal of hypocrisy and villainy. The scene where the villains decide that the public good requires them to engineer an Ukraine-style famine in order to tighten military control over the crumbling republic could have been taken from security cameras in the Oval Office. It was perfect.

THE UGLY

The ugly is that the production values were cheap, cheap, and this film showed it. Some scenes look as if they were filmed in the school gym. All the crowd scenes were ten or twelve people, shouting. Nationwide disasters, famines, blackouts, and pirate raids are depicted by flashing a still photo on the screen with a narrator mentioning the vast events occurring.

background 1

The film makers, honestly, would have been better served had they animated their epic, using Art Deco paintings as backgrounds, like something from a Max Fleischer’s SUPERMAN cartoon, with soaring buildings, speeding trains, and shining powerplants.

background

THE CONCLUSION

Never has a message been more needed, more desperately needed, than the message of this movie the current generation. The events in the film are coming true all around us, and the anti-industrial revolution in in full swing.

Alas, this movie is simply not strong enough, not good looking enough, not well written enough, not well-acted nor well-written enough, not GOOD enough, to serve as the John the Baptist we need, warning us to escape the wrath to come.

The wall of solid sound formed by the brainless mainstream media will smother the message. This movie is the last stand of a rearguard, their weapons amaturishly and imperfectly employed, and the bravery of the soldiers is insufficient to overcome the hordes of orcs overwhelming them.

Whether the lights of New York go out due to pure socialist self-imposed idiocy and incompetence, or due to self-imposed idiocy and unwillingness to protect ourselves from the inevitable terrorist electromagnet pulse weapon knocking out nationwide powerstations for a year, is no matter.

The lights are going out.

rockefeller_plaza

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How to Decipher a Book Review http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/how-to-decipher-a-book-review/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/how-to-decipher-a-book-review/#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 19:00:26 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12384  

Over at the Vox Day website, one Bextor Fenwick asks a really good question:

I was looking to get my hands on a physical book of Wright’s. The only book they do carry is “Count to a Trillion”. But, the average review rating for that book on amazon is not all that great. So, because of that I’ve been holding off on buying it. However, you made some very favorable comments about that book. Why do you think it didn’t fare so well with the reviews on amazon??

Here is my theory, which should surprise no one. The book fared well with those whose tastes, preconceptions, worldview and attitudes it pleased, and fared poorly with those it displeased. That raises a deeper question of how to discover the tastes of the reviewer, what he is looking for in a book.

Please look at what the reviewers, positive and negative, found good and bad in the book, and try to guess whether their tastes and predispositions match yours.

A negative review:

“This is a dreadful book…. It’s bad in so many ways… where to start?

The weird politics? The hero is a 22nd century Texan, which apparently means he talks like the sidekick in a spaghetti Western and has unlimited faith in the Right to Keep and Bear Arms – no fooling, he actually lectures posthumans a couple of centuries later on the necessity of the Second Amendment. This idiot’s name is Menelaus Montrose, but he’s basically Rick Perry minus the Christian accoutrements. … The Europeans are effete, and the villains are all treacherous Hispanics: from Spain, thank God, I was afraid Montrose was going to start calling them ‘wetbacks’.”

Now, what do you think this reviewer’s politics are? Do you think he is Leftwing or Rightwing? Do you think these portrayals of Europeans as effete or Spaniards as wetbacks are actually in the book, or something he brings into the reading out of his own particular bigotries and racial opinions?

A positive review:

“John C Wright did his research for this book, it is not fantasy masquerading as science fiction, nor does it include faster then light travel, everything from the social, the economic, the math, to the physics, the scientific method and the way that science and society actually happen and advance are wholly believable and accurate.”

What do you think the reviewer here was looking for in a book? Is what he looks for what you look for?

Or this:

“There’s something about Wright’s style of prose that reminds me of ancient classics. yes, there’s gee-whiz technology, but the Big Ideas and the heroic epic style come straight from a time when it was a story about some long dead Greek. Who I would particular recommend this to is anyone who finds descriptions of physics and mathematics like a kind of poetry.”

What is this reviewer looking for? What are his standards?

Another way is to discover which authors the reviewer likes, to confirm if his tastes match yours. Note this most flattering discription of my work:

“Wright is Chesterton-infused Melvillean van Vogt birthday cakes with Zelazny sauce on top.”

You know he likes Chesterton, etc. If Chesterton is not to your taste, then you know this book might not be for you.

Another positive review:

“So many great ideas are contained within that they could have been parsed out a basis for a dozen of other SF books…..

“Menelaus is a brilliant polymath who dreams of “shining tomorrows” and the disappointments of actual life and not flying cars and other gee wiz technological developments. His dreams are partially shaped by a comic book series named Asymptote that has many shadows of Star Trek and it’s view of the future of man along with the cornier aspects related to Captain Kirk. As someone whose childhood included the start of the Star Trek series and the race to the moon this young character had many elements I could relate to.

“The book also deals with post humanism and contact with an alien civilization which has left an artifact so dense with information that ultimately it can only be read by someone with post human intelligence. The big ideas surrounding this aspect are also very interesting ….

“The philosophical discussions between the main characters is also interesting…

“Really the dialogue is quite enjoyable and often very funny at times. One description involving hackers and Moby Dick is one of the funniest things I have ever read…”

Now, this reviewer finds appealing the selfsame things other negative reviewers found unappealing: many brilliant ideas (which other reviewers call a slow plot) a likeable main character (which other reviewers called unrealistic — perhaps they know no likeable people in real life) philosophy (tedious to dullards) enjoyable witty dialog (meaningless to those who don’t get the jokes).

Let me make a personal comment: look back at the first review I quoted. Myself, I wonder how portraying the starship captain who saves Montrose from a life of misery as the only man ballsy enough to organize and fund the world’s first international and interstellar manned mission somehow qualifies as ‘effete’. The character is from Monaco, and is the only character whose nation of origin is mentioned in the book, aside from the main villain, who happens to be from Spain.

More to the point, I wonder how portraying Spain as a first-world world-empire with a working space program versus Texas inhabited by Mestizo as a third world hellhole somehow constitutes a racist insult against the Spaniards rather than against the half-Spanish half-Indians living in the Republic of Texas (including my hero).

Before a reviewer plays the race card against me, perhaps he should discover what race the hero of my book is, eh? Bob Heinlein played a similar trick against the bigots of his day by making Mr Rico of STARSHIP TROOPERS Filipino.

Heh-heh. Gotcha, ya bigot.

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A Cover Update http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/a-cover-update/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/a-cover-update/#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 18:08:55 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12382 An announcement from my publisher:

A cover update

We had a bit more trouble getting John C. Wright’s latest masterpiece out the door than usual due to the cover artist being temporarily knocked out of commission. Since the book was already late, JartStar stepped in and colorized the low-res greyscale comp that we had, which was why the initial cover was not quite up to our usual standard. Fortunately, the artist is back up to speed and last week he sent us the final image, which has now been incorporated into the ebooks on both the Castalia store and Amazon. If you wish to update your ebook accordingly, I believe Amazon does it automatically if your Kindle is set to permit it, while if you have purchased ONE BRIGHT STAR TO GUIDE THEM from the Castalia store, you already have the ability to download it again via the original download link provided. If, for some reason, it doesn’t work, email me from the same email you used to purchase it and I’ll send it to you.

ONE BRIGHT STAR TO GUIDE THEM has been getting some excellent reviews, such as this one:

Mr. Wright takes us on the most bizarre of hero’s quests: the one that takes place AFTER the quest, and that takes place in the “real world.” In so doing, he brings back a bit of the magic of Narnia and – much like Lewis’ Chronicles were a parable to point the young reader to Jesus – One Bright Star reminds us that there is hope when youth has faded, innocence lost, and the black-and-white morality of a child seems but a memory. There is hope that a man can find “childlike faith” and find again the magic and joy of belief. That restoration of faith and hope is why I marked the book 5 stars; because it took me back to my First Love and reminded me of that otherworldly joy I felt when reading Lewis’ timeless novels.

Another reviewer added:

Simply enchantingly beautiful. It is rare praise to give to a novel these days, but, Mister Wright’s One Bright Star to Guide Them deserves this praise. I would highly recommend anyone take it up and read. It is simple because everything in the story is straightforwardly told with a wealth lying behind each paragraph. It is beautiful because it is true. The character, their actions, and their reasons all strike the reader as what those character truly would do or say. One Bright Star to Guide Them is, at its heart, a story of good and evil and the consequences of accepting each.

But let’s not forget about his excellent CITY BEYOND TIME either:

John C. Wright at his mind-twisting best. Excellent. Gripping, well-told story that build slowly to a pretty cool payoff. Highly recommended.

If you haven’t kept up with our new releases, I recommend that you do so now, because the good news is that we expect to publish one more new work by the SF grandmaster before the end of the year.

We are also on schedule to publish RIDING THE RED HORSE, the new MIL-SF anthology series with contributions from Eric S. Raymond, William S. Lind, Tom Kratman, Christopher G. Nuttall, Chris Kennedy, and Steve Rzasa & Vox Day, among others, in November.

The new work to which my publisher refers is SOMEWHITHER, an novel I have been working on, off and on, for some years now. It is a sidewise-in-time story that is sideways to all other sideway-in-time stories. Think of an as an alternate take on alternate history.

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Praise for ONE BRIGHT STAR TO GUIDE THEM http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/praise-for-one-bright-star-to-guide-them/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/praise-for-one-bright-star-to-guide-them/#comments Sun, 21 Sep 2014 00:26:10 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12379 Forgive me for repeating a reader’s praise of my work, but if you recall my theory which I recently posted that the proper motive for writing is not fame nor money nor the applause of crowds, but merely to touch the heart of that one reader one might never know who knows what your work really means.

Here is a reader for whom I am happy to have done my work.

You may keep the applause of worlds for more popular books. I am writing for this one, and for anyone willing and able to be for me the one, the only one, for whom I write:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/review/R1OVH7X9F93LMV/ref=cm_cr_pr_rvw_ttl?ASIN=B00N9760GO

Bright Star,” indeed

 

It was very difficult for me to sort through my feelings in reading One Bright Star to Guide Them, for it is a complex book wrapped in a simple premise.

Many of us have read Narnia, watched Star Wars, or heard some other adventure story where the average joe hero is plucked from his simple and boring life to be taken on A Quest, usually taken out of his world (as was the case with Narnia) and thrust into an unknown environment to fight some evil or right some wrong. It’s a tale as old as the first heroic myths.

Ah, but what happens when the Quest ends? Lewis touched on it – very briefly – in The Last Battle. 3 of the 4 children from The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe return to Narnia, but one sister got too wrapped up in the trappings of being “an adult.” She chose to forget. It quite probably was the greatest tragedy of that series. But that’s all we get about the Pevensies’ time after Narnia.

Mr. Wright takes us on the most bizarre of hero’s quests: the one that takes place AFTER the quest, and that takes place in the “real world.” In so doing, he brings back a bit of the magic of Narnia and – much like Lewis’ Chronicles were a parable to point the young reader to Jesus – One Bright Star reminds us that there is hope when youth has faded, innocence lost, and the black-and-white morality of a child seems but a memory. There is hope that a man can find “childlike faith” and find again the magic and joy of belief. That restoration of faith and hope is why I marked the book 5 stars; because it took me back to my First Love and reminded me of that otherworldly joy I felt when reading Lewis’ timeless novels.

ADDED LATER: I seem to have a second ‘one reader’. Here is shining praise indeed from another reviewer:

‘Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know
that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.’
G.K. Chesterton

I will admit to being a John C. Wright fanboy, and that I regard him as the finest prose stylist writing in SF/Fantasy today. With those biases admitted out front, I must say that this is Wright’s best piece of work I’ve yet read. John C. Wright is either taking dictation directly from Elfland, acting as Oberon and Titania’s personal scribe, being visited by the ghosts of Lewis, Tolkien and T. H. White, who whisper stories to him when the moon is full, or he has mastered the children’s fantasy story like no one since Madeline L’Engle, I don’t know which. Instead of his usual baroque filigreed prose, the writing in this story is stripped down, simpler, and yet retains the ability to imply depths and heights without directly glimpsing them. Wright weaves a tale of what happens after the quest is over, that is just as good as a story of the quest itself. For anyone who loves Fantasy, this is a must read. It will transport you to that far green country of your youth, where there was nothing more important on a Saturday afternoon than whether or not Frodo destroyed the ring, or if the Witch was defeated, or the rightful King Crowned.

Mr. Wright is the best in the field and fully deserving of the honorific of grandmaster. Mr Wright, I do not know how you do it, but you have brought us a story from the uttermost West, bathed in the light of the Two Trees.

Thank you.

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Nachtritter http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/nachtritter/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/nachtritter/#comments Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:22:13 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12377 I am trying to concoct a German sounding name for a group in my next novel.

Nachtnebeldunkelritterbruderchaft.

It is supposed to mean the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Night-dark Mist.

Does it? Anyone here speak German?

Their shorter form is Nachtritter, which I am hoping means Night-rider (or, literally Night-knight)

Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

 

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The Wright Perspective: The Utopias of SF – The Crazy Years http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/the-wright-perspective-the-utopias-of-sf-the-crazy-years/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/the-wright-perspective-the-utopias-of-sf-the-crazy-years/#comments Wed, 17 Sep 2014 20:16:25 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12371 My latest is up at Every Joe: http://www.everyjoe.com/2014/09/17/lifestyle/utopias-science-fiction-best-world-raise-family/

Most imaginary worlds are interesting places to read about, but few are places one would like to live. We continue our look at the Utopias of Science Fiction with an eye to which perfect world is the best place to live and raise a family.

In our last episode, we saw two utopias where the laws of economics were just ignored. The writers, LeGuin and Holland, simply assumed that stores and shops and factories would somehow run, even without policemen to prevent theft, the militia to prevent riots, or slavedrivers and taskmasters to prevent malingering, goldbricking and featherbedding.

The writers of the next era, or at least some of them, attempted at least some explanation of how corruption of their nearly perfect societies would be prevented: L. Neil Smith outlaws Congress, a prime source of corruption, and Iain M. Banks outlaws human ownership of the means of production, by having artificial intelligences control and distribute all property, so that mankind need no more work for a living than a housecat needs hunt for rats to earn her keep. But unless the artificial intelligences are as incorruptible as archangels, this just shifts the problem one remove. In Ken MacLeod’s world, the suggestion seems to be that if troublemakers are given powerful military hardware to play with, and told to mug a gas giant filled with post-singularity superintelligences, everything will somehow work out.

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Advert for ‘reliable workers’ banned as discrimination http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/advert-for-reliable-workers-banned-as-discrimination/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/advert-for-reliable-workers-banned-as-discrimination/#comments Wed, 17 Sep 2014 16:39:07 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12369 ‘Tis a sad day when news is indistinguishable from parody. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/7079231/Advert-for-reliable-workers-banned-as-discrimination-by-Jobcentre-Plus.html)

Nicole Mamo, 48, wanted to post an advert for a £5.80-an-hour domestic cleaner on her local Jobcentre Plus website.

The text of the advert ended by stating that any applicants for the post ”must be very reliable and hard-working”.

But when Ms Mamo called the Jobcentre Plus in Thetford, Norfolk, the following day she was told that her advert would not be displayed instore.

A Jobcentre Plus worker claimed that the word ”reliable” meant they could be sued for discriminating against unreliable workers.

My comment: Science fiction writers often show the folly of some trend in modern life by envisioning a darkly humorous future where that trend is carried to an absurd extreme. When real life exceeds the imagined absurdity, my life as a science fiction writer grows difficult.

I cannot imagine anything this stupid.

The comedian Evan Sayet came up with the best explanation for this madness I have yet encountered. He says that the Leftists are mentally arrested at age five, the age at which they were told it was not nice to be not nice to people, and were told not nice means discrimination. They were told, in other words, that to make discriminating judgements, to be able to distinguish between similar but distinct cases, the ability tell, as on Sesame Street which things are not like the other, is evil and the source of evil.

They were told to condemn all condemnation, and to judge harshly any man who used his judgment. They were told that fair play is unfair.

They were told that thinking is a hate crime.

The result? In Sayet’s words:

“liberal ideology leads them to invariably and inevitably side with evil over good, wrong over right, the lesser over the better, the ugly over the beautiful, the profane over the profound, and the behaviors that lead to failure over those that lead to success.”

And, in this case, to side with the unreliable over the reliable.

Ayn Rand, who is wrong and nonsensical on many topics, is reliably right when it comes to her analysis of the motive and psychology of the liberal ideologues.

They do not want to own your fortune, they want you to lose it; they do not want to succeed, they want you to fail; they do not want to live, they want you to die; they desire nothing, they hate existence, and they keep running, each trying not to learn that the object of his hatred is himself…

The best way to ruin fortunes, ensure failure, welcome death, and express their universal hatred, is for the Leftist to decree thought to be thought-crime, speech to be speech-crime and life to be life-crime. The best way to create failure is to outlaw success. The best way to create unreliability is to decree reliability to be discrimination.

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Crossexamined by the Honey Badger Brigade http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/crossexamined-by-the-honey-badger-brigade/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/crossexamined-by-the-honey-badger-brigade/#comments Wed, 17 Sep 2014 05:49:07 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12366 Here is the link of my interview with the fine ladies of the Honey Badgers, who are ardent anti-feminists hence pro-women. I was delighted to find such specimens still existed, but I was only able to speak from the depth of a cave, as you will detect from the audio quality.

http://honeybadgerbrigade.com/2014/09/16/badger-pod-nerdcast-10-the-social-justice-invasion-of-scififantasy/

 

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Victory http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/victory-3/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/victory-3/#comments Tue, 16 Sep 2014 13:50:04 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12354

A reader named VunderGuyasks how we Christians and our allies among all men of goodwill shall win the Culture Wars?

How do we especially take back Hollywood? How do we take back academia? How do we take back the publishing world?

Another reader, Brian Niemeier, speaking on another topic, nonetheless answered this question so well, that I here quote him in full:

PC’s ability to perpetuate itself is limited by what Mr. Wright calls the Unreality Principle. In everyday life, real world experience slowly but inevitably “rebuilds the compiler”. That’s why the Left must cling to their control over academia and the media. They use these mouthpieces to constantly barrage us with PC propaganda while the government coerces our conformity via hate crimes legislation and affirmative action.

Human nature cannot be changed and always reasserts itself. The fire always burns no matter how often the PC Commissars insist that we can touch it without harm. If that weren’t the case, there would be no reason to oppose them.

The amount of time and money that the Left must spend suppressing the natural formation of traditions has always been exorbitant, and it is now unsustainable.

Their education monopoly becomes irrelevant as the number of people homeschooling and/or declining to attend college rapidly increases.

The major network news shows that once controlled public opinion have lost credibility with all but an aging minority.

Audiences are deserting Hollywood in droves due to summer blockbuster fatigue and stagnant storytelling that insults them.

Independent publishing has already broken the New York establishment’s back. The PC gatekeepers still man their posts, but the walls have come down.

On a related note, the SFWA and Hugo debacles have inoculated gamers against PC’s recent incursion into video games, where the customer base is offering fierce resistance that’s caught the Leftists off guard.

PC is indeed like a virus–one that kills or sterilizes its victims. Those, like us, who are immune to it are likely to pass that immunity on to our children.

Thus, while PC may have created an ideological massa damnata, it has left a faithful remnant who will rebuild civilization.

My comment:

I submit that victory shall be ours by using the same methods we used to overthrow the Roman Empire and replace paganism with Christianity.

First, we must pray. We must live differently from the pagans around us, according to standards of higher discipline, displaying more fidelity in marriage, eschewing divorce, assisting the poor and downtrodden, and living lives so holy that even the devils are amazed.

Second, by being willing to suffer public scorn, loss of prestige, position, and fortune for Christ.

Third, by being open, vocal, coordinated, and relentless in our efforts. Fourth, by staying on message and never giving an inch.

Fifth and last, by showing the imagination of man that no one can live in the craven airless cesspool of the mental environment of political correctness, but that men flourish and grow strong and brave, not to mention more sexually appealing, in the walled gardens of the Church and the battlefields of life.

The Left did not take over the culture in an evening, nor in a summer, but after a century of hard and patient and tireless work, and it was the work of many hands acting according to one ideal, one vision, one philosophy.

It is, namely, the visions of hell, of gulag, of death camps, which make the Leftists salivate like Pavlov’s dogs. The Left are not repelled by the Holocaust, by the purges of Stalin or the genocides (yes, I mean genocide in the plural) of Mao, but erotically stimulated, attracted and allured to it, and they dream night and day how to get enough power over their fellow man to commit such atrocities again. They do not want to make an omelet: their pleasure comes from smashing eggs. If you do not believe me, go into any modern art museum. There you will see concrete visual depictions of their internal emotional and moral nature, the invisible things made visible.

We have truth, beauty, virtue, life, honesty, delight, joy, forgiveness, mercy, justice, reason, logic and sanity on our side, not to mention The Almighty. We are promised that things will get worse, apocalyptic levels of worse, before they get better, New Jerusalem Levels of better. Let not your heart be troubled. Fear nothing but the Lord.

*

Note: this is a reprint of a column from last week, reincarnated here because the comments thread had been highjacked by a Jew-hater, a form of life Americans since World War Two have rightly found too despicable to tolerate.

I am astonished and disheartened that any vile soul of that sort would think his remarks welcome among civilized men. We live to destroy you.

We destroyed the branch of Leftism known as Nazism. No longer are their words and thoughts regarded as worth answering. They exist only in an outer darkness, ignored and despised. After the Cold War, however, a similar purge of Socialism, Leftism, Nihilism from Christendom was not done. Indeed, the collapse of the example of the Soviet Union seemed to encourage the Leftists to greater efforts, and their abortive and malign philosophy became the default of our once-great civilization.

To abolish them into the windy night lands where they will gnaw on their own entrails for spite, starved of influence and praise, this is what our task is now. This is the next great battle against the darkness and the princes of the darkness.

*

Addendum: Vox Popoli links to this article, and adds a comment too good not to share:

You cannot reason with the willfully insane.

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The Superversive Literary Movement Stakes its First Claim http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/the-superversive-literary-movement-stakes-its-first-claim/ http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/09/the-superversive-literary-movement-stakes-its-first-claim/#comments Mon, 15 Sep 2014 14:20:44 +0000 http://www.scifiwright.com/?p=12350 Intercollegiate Review has published a column wherein I wrest the glory of Harry Potter out of the grasping, flabby-fingered, pallid, moist, wormlike, and malodorous hands of the Leftwingers.

I hope I will be forgiven if I think my opening line sounds like Chesterton:

In reality, the best way to find reality is through fairyland.

Fairy tales of any sort are more truthful about the eternal verities of the human condition than many a tale told in the realistic style. Stories about a bold champion of Camelot or the enchantress of Aeaea, or the great dragon beneath the Lonely Mountain, will tell you more of sin and salvation, love and loss and love found again, than a yarn about a cuckold in turn-of-the-century Dublin, or a decadent drunk living in West Egg, Long Island. This is because so-called realistic tales deal only with the surface features of life, what we see with our eyes, so to speak; fairy tales touch the mystery and wonder at the core of life.

Harry Potter is the most successful book of all time next to Pilgrim’s Progress and the Sear’s Catalogue. And so, naturally, there is a certain cult, known in his world as Deatheaters, and in our world as Political Correctness, that seeks repulsively to claim that success as their own.

A recent article in i09 reports that Anthony Gierzynski, a political scientist at the University of Vermont, found that Harry Potter fans are more open to diversity and are more politically tolerant than nonfans. The fans are also less likely to support the use of deadly force or torture, more politically active, and more likely to have had a negative view of the Bush administration.

From this the conclusion is put forth (in a leap of logic that would make the cow jumping over the moon blush with shame) that Harry Potter draws children toward the political Left.

What an utter load of rubbish.

I have inspected neither Gierzynski’s data nor his methods, but I know blast-ended skrewt dung when I smell it.

http://www.intercollegiatereview.com/index.php/2014/09/15/the-superversive-world-of-harry-potter/

This column brings the term ‘superversive’ (a neologism coined by Tom Simon) for which the Superversive Literary Movement, of which I am a founding member, is named.

Read the whole thing, click through the link several times a day, and write fourteen letters a piece to the editor of the Intercollegiate Review larding me with unlikely praise, and leave comments there.

Then build a ninety-one mile tall statue of me out of an admixture of gold, orichalcum, admantium and unobtainium, atop the magnetic north pole of Ellesmere Island, called by the Eskimo wizards Umingmak Nuna; and send seventy-one of the fairest virgins in the land to dance and sing to the sound of harp, viol, flute, cornet, pipe, psaltery, organ, dulcimer, timbrel, and sackbut, in adoration of me at the foot of the colossus; while captive kings, weeping while still crowned and robed in ermine above their helms and harnesses, are forced to fight with net and trident, or dirk or brutal hatchet, in the circus of gladiators against each other or against wild beasts becostumed in the heraldric animals of their fallen kingdoms, so that the Czar of Russia may be torn by bears, and the Queen of England gored by the unicorn and eaten by lions, while the hapless leader of America, nailed to a broken bell, will have his liver torn out by a trained bald eagle; and meanwhile masked and hooded priests serving nameless chthonic goddesses sacrifice to my glory a hecatomb of arctic whales, giant squid, and leviathans of the sea in a grisly aquatic ceremony!

Well, okay, never mind the giant statue, or the circus, or the sacrifices. Just read the article. I and don’t need seventy-one singing and dancing virgins. Only send seven fair virgins by my house to help my wife do the house cleaning, and we only need one or two to play the dulcimer and sackbut.

You have no idea how hard it is to find a really fair virgin who can play the sackbut these days.

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