May 26th., 2022, making changes to the common section, the AST definition.
Still having problems finding a way into AST for folks, this will be attempt number I don’t know any more, another series, I suppose. The plan is to keep them short and manageable, hope to make the point with a barrage from many angles. I’ll start with the definition for AST – here’s the first, it means Antisocialization Theory – and then how it alters the narrative of a number of topics.
AST redefines everything, but we’ll try to show how, specifically, for this list of ideas:
etc. Oh, forgot some (and this will be a feature):
trauma and healing, psychology
Redefinitions – 9. Strength
AST, a definition:
AST is the theory of our hurt, the human science of not deterrent and socialization, but of abuse, punitive and otherwise, and our antisocialization, which long word means exactly what it sounds like it means: to have been made antisocial. It is about the dark side of our social control, the stuff we supposedly don’t want to happen, beyond that the person maybe did what they were bloody well told.
The AST Theory of conflict states that the failures and ostensibly unintended consequences of our rough control are deeply and vastly consequential in human life, and its author can get very expansive, imagining it to be the post powerful and destructive force driving us.
The central idea is that structures and ways of being within the human social group – laws and punishments, ordeals, etc., – add up to pain and trauma for the individual, while laws prohibit simple reactive violence and simple revenge, and so the individual is “charged” with bad feelings, antisocialized and looking for a fight they are allowed to have. The group’s leadership – administrators of the law – can then exploit this reservoir of anger, point it at someone and allow the citizens the “freedom,” not an accident and not irony, we are always seeing this word, to deflect and unload their frustrations.
AST asks you to note, that our own people frustrate us, and exploit our frustrations at will in this system, using us to abuse some Other, some human group in a war or a pogrom, or an apartheid. That is what I call the AST theory of conflict, weaponized by our own, to be discharged in some group conflict.
Hmm. Not sure if that will be the one I use every time, but I like it for our first few entries:
New, May 26th., 2022: there seems to be a cyclic aspect to the life of conflict described, we see societies forever moving towards authoritarianism and war, followed by a relative peace and the slow buildup of bad feelings again, as the chaos fades and the social control is re-established, and . . . grows, relentlessly, towards conflict again. AST makes the point that this is a positive feedback loop, that a violent environment gets more so, that the people make adaptations for it that make it all worse in the next year and the next generation.
This feedback loop is not occurring in the wild violence of the chimpanzee, of the past, which, as we all perceive, is still waning in the human world. This is a feedback loop of the violence we like and do on purpose. Back to the “human nature” myth, why would a static nature have feedback loops and cycles?
OK, I did a lot of this in the “Abuse” entry, mostly in individual terms. I suggested that a hurt baby sees the disparity of the adult’s strength and smartly processes that if they, the baby were stronger, they could have escaped it, fought back or defended. It was too brief, but I offered that a more worldly, older person who is aware of the social control, rules, etc., may not see personal strength as a workable solution on first thought, but that this seems logical to me for an infant. I have said elsewhere that I think perhaps we all make that assessment along with a more general one about Human Nature with our first spanking, again, a smart decision about how to move forward for an infant who has encountered roughness from the world straightaway, likely from its own parents.
As I have said elsewhere, it’s the baby’s smartest move – but it’s a forced play, these decisions are forced upon the infant. These are good, smart decisions to cope with an abusive environment – and all must make them. It’s a system of forced philosophies, a rough, unforgiving world, strength, evil human natures and such, because we create the environment. We force this early, mode-setting choice of opinion on our babies.
Strength, or the love of it, is inescapable, ubiquitous, in human society, a forever, never achieved goal. No awful thing exists that doesn’t have the awful “silver lining” of the resultant “strength,” someone is supposed to gain from it. It’s posited as a sort of progress amid literal setbacks.
This, I believe, has been our “successful” group conflict strategy for a very long time, I mean, the living consider it successful. The victims of conflict and war might argue, if they could, but the living seem to approve, sadly, even the most damaged of them. We traded in quality of life for this life of strength, and we are told to be happy we’re alive, and that the dead would trade us for our life under this threat – it’s shut up and be happy you have a life, just like shut up and be happy you have a job.
Economics. Shut up, you too profit from the war.
Keep controlling those kids so your leaders can more easily do so, and we shall be a strong nation, with an angry population no-one wants pointed at them. A strong nation, the sort that disturbs the other nations’ sleep and spurs them on also, to more and more strength, so worrying us, etc., ad infinitum. This Red Queen’s game of people trying to become stronger than, hold on, checking . . . people, this is madness when we look at it in long perspective, of course. But it is madness by Bobby Jones’ definition, because it is something we do repeatedly, hoping for different results some day, something we do all the time. The strength of nations is our moral ceiling. Yes, we’d all like peace, but let’s be realistic. I think “realistic,” in these conversations means “conforming with my infantile, forced upon me view of “reality.”
I’ll spell it out, I never remember, that is literally a writer’s entire job: strength is bad, strength is hurt, desensitization, and violence. Strength is the direct result of abuse, according to this train of thought I am on, antisocialization theory, strength is stored anger: treat a human unfairly, and give them no outlet, and watch healthy anger slowly ferment into social “strength,” read war and conflict, hate and strife. A society that openly creates more and more of it is up to something, it’s a terrible non-accident looking for a place to happen, and it’s a positive feedback loop as stated above, it goes until the “accident” happens.
Getting long, but I hate to miss a chance to say, I despise the “strong” hashtags, the stay strong message in general, when are people supposed to cry or mourn?
People ought to be horribly ashamed that every time they say it, they are condemning and denying every young, sick and old person on earth, turning their back on everyone who needs them, including themselves, both coming and going in and out of this life.
June 13th., 2022