Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Thought-Terminating Cliche

Al Fin has a link-rich post about groupthink and the hive mind:
A large part of the dominant left’s ideological battle against all others, is keeping alternative thought as far away from “authoritative” public platforms as possible. So no commencement address at Brandeis for Ayaan Hirsi-Ali.
A thought-terminating cliche is a canned response that drops a listener into a default protective mode where challenging propositions can be rejected out of hand.  These cliches have (as all cliches must) a kernel of truth surrounded by vast shades of gray that are skipped over.  The usefulness of the thought-terminating cliche is that the Faithful can resist sin.
When avoiding the group mind, one is not looking for things to believe. Rather, one is looking for provocative ideas capable of jarring the mind into alternative levels and avenues of thought. A mind looking for something to believe is a mind ripe and ready for recruitment into the hive.
This explains the hypocrisy of the Academic Left: in the 1960s and 1970s they were all for free exploration of new ideas, because they were on the outside looking to get in.  Free expression helped them.  Since the 1980s they have become the dominant ideology and so new ideas are most definitely not welcome.  Thus the focus on punishing thought crime (Campus speech codes) as being harmful to diversity.

Of course, "thought crime" and "diversity" are both cliches.  However, only one stops the thought process.


Mike Brahier said...

"Thus the focus on punishing thought crime (Campus speech codes) as being harmful to diversity."

We have a local talk radio guy who is pretty good, Burnie Thompson. He says that diversity to the Left is where everyone looks different but thinks the same.

I think you both have it about sized up.

Mark Philip Alger said...

This is why I think the best response to Leftist BS is immediate, aggressive, preemptive, destruction, in whatever venue makes sense. No mercy. No quarter. No prisoners. It is war, People.