Guest Post: Reality Has Consequences

Tyler Durden's picture

Originally posted at Monty Pelerin's World blog,

The world no longer makes sense to most people over forty years of age. Much of what we thought was true is now denied. What to us is obviously false (or at least always was) is now accepted as being true. Here are examples from Frick at Bias Breakdown that show obvious contradictions between popular belief and what we hold as reality:

If every Arab in the Middle East laid down his weapon, there would be peace in the Middle East. If every Israeli laid down his (or her) weapon, Israel would be annihilated.


Likewise, if government stopped all spending, the deficit problem would be solved. If government confiscated the gross annual income of every individual in the country making over $66,193, the deficit would destroy our country.


In a sane world, politicians would cut every last dollar of government spending they could in order to bring financial order back to an entitlement-happy society. After government’s debilitating spending habits were slashed or restructured, only then would the conversation shift to taxes and revenue to make up the gap.


Of course, this isn’t a sane world. It’s the world in which it’s Israel’s fault for every ill in Palestine and Republicans are evil and stupid for wanting to cut spending.

Fantasies like these might are satisfying to many, but they are ultimately destructive. Truth cannot be changed by repeating falsehoods. Nor can it be altered by more people believing untruths. But, when these fantasizers overwhelm society with their false beliefs, society will no longer function. Society cannot invent its own truth based on convenience, prejudice or popularity. Truth, not manufactured myth, is key to survival. Societies which deviate from it, don’t survive.

As Ayn Rand stated:

You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality.

The avoidance of reality has overtaken our society. The consequences of doing so have been building for decades and will soon overwhelm us. On our current path, much of what we knew and cared about will be destroyed.

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fijisailor's picture

" Republicans are evil and stupid for wanting to cut spending"


More political propaganda.  The Repubs had record deficits under Bush and now we have new records with Obama.  Neither party offers a solution.  It's only a matter of where the trillions go.

Toolshed's picture

I think the author was attempting to use sarcasm, or something, to make his point........whatever his point was. The article is so poorly written it is really hard to tell though. I would like the 5 minutes or so it took to read this drivel back please.

Incubus's picture

It took you 5 minutes to read that?

Lebensphilosoph's picture

[quote]Truth, not manufactured myth, is key to survival. Societies which deviate from it, don’t survive.[/quote]


I take issue with several matters in this piece, like the modern misuse of the word myth and the conflation of truth and reality, but this really takes the cake. In all of the historical record, has it not been precisely the most 'advanced' and 'civilised' and 'enlightened' societies, the ones that have abandoned their myths and their fanatical belief in themselves in the face of all 'objective' evaluation, that have crumbled to dust?

Incubus's picture

We're not quite there yet.

All great societies up until this point have facilitated sorts of freedoms.

We've got the physical freedom thing down, for the most part.  We're still working on the "free mind" thing.  Maybe in another two or three "advanced civilizations" we'll figure it out.  A truly advanced and enlightened society would be a place without a need for laws, or coercion. 

Despite my optimism, I don't think we'll ever be able to realize such a society, because frankly, at our core, we're just animals that succumb to our instincts.  We'll die on this rock, chasing delusions and thinking ourselves something great.


AnAnonymous's picture

As Ayn Rand stated:

You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality.


Another piece of 'american' genius.

As shown by 'americans', you might prefer propaganda and fantasy over reality (as proven by the statement of this 'american' philosopher) and avoid the consequences of prefering fantasy and propaganda over reality.

'Americans' have been doing this for centuries now and such have proven the possibility of doing it.

Will they ever succeed into doing it? Maybe not.

But 'americans' have proven you can do it. All it takes is to find people to foot the bill of consequences of avoiding reality.

But as this 'american' thinker is 'american', she had to prefer fantasy over reality and claim that the 'american' experiment is not enough of an evidence of the possible evasion from the consequences of avoiding reality.

'Americans', their nature is eternal and they consume, consume, consume...

d edwards's picture

Reality avoidance: think bread and circuses in the crumbling Roman Empire.

Today, far too many people avoid reality with modern bread and circuses: fast food gluttony and distractions such as mindless TV shows, movies, sports obsession, video games, etc.

Have you seen the Person on the street interviews of people who are totally clueless about current events? Welcome to the new empire in decline: the US.