Archive for March 2015

What happens when people think American gung ho cowboyism is bad?

March 17, 2015

Obviously obeying your society in return for security is better… except when stuff doesn’t work, apparently.

From a Bookworm room post.


Pillars of Eternity releases March 26 2015

March 14, 2015

Some interesting back story leading up to it.

Chris Avellone’s name usually comes up in association with Planescape Torment, but I think Colin McComb contributed significantly more to the lore and the background. Chris’ idea of role playing didn’t suit the single face, single perspective of the Nameless One as it came out. If they had more resources, Avellone would have made the Nameless One more customizable so that the people can make them look like X. That is not quite the narrative people got at the end, however. I followed Avellone’s later games, and they all had a different philosophy compared to Planescape Torment rpg. I didn’t figure out why until recently.

Role play, as in putting yourself on the stage and playing a role you created for yourself is one thing. Role playing as in reading a story and putting yourself in the main character’s shoes, is something else. Planescape Torment is considered great, I suspect, because of the latter narration style, not the former.

Now back to the Pillars of Eternity summary:

Fall from Grace, a party companion character in PST, is done in a reworked fan art portrait there. It shows too much skin compared to her modest and reserved personality, but highlights well her charisma and coolness. Kuudere is what the Japanese might call that personality, which they polished over several generations of media marketing. Grace also has elements of the rich girl, the higher class, hard to obtain prize, without the arrogance. Annah would be a tsundere, of course, as I wrote about in a previous write up. Has the companion banter dialogue. More nostalgia.

Want to see Chris Avellone interviewed with detailed design decisions?

March 10, 2015

Music via artists on youtube

March 10, 2015

There is a calming emotion, with a slight bitter sweet aftertaste, sent through the melody and vocals. I remember the feeling from various Japanese works of art of a similar tone and aesthetic.

Feels like a Latin aria, flying through the air and journeying into new vistas.

Leadership, social hierarchies, and US 1820-1880 history

March 6, 2015

In a hierarchy, the leadership usually occupies the alpha position in part or in whole. Marc MacYoung wrote some interesting social descriptions of what that entails, although he gets into too much playing his own role with the violence vs prison debate.

A leader usually has to have someone who obeys them, male or female. The group can consist of 2 people or more. In exchange for fealty and loyalty, protection and resources are offered, along with civic virtues or social harmony. Similar to feudalism in that respect.

Most of MacYoung’s social descriptions can be found at no non sense self defense dot com.

Principally, an alpha would be at the top of one hierarchy, so would command obedience and loyalty from their group. If there is evidence of contested issues, or there are rebels there, and basically if people in the group don’t look like they obey one leader, then the alpha’s position is eroded in the views of others. This often incites verbal or physical violence, in order to discipline members. Which is often why people part of gangs cannot backdown when they are in sight of their women or their male subordinates, it is a loss of face or respect. People who might normally backdown if they were alone, would refuse to in a group, because they are thinking of the future social status they would lose.

Cockney humour, being crazy, or escalating violence to a point where it pressures the entire mob, may be used as justifications for the group backing off. If everyone in a group is scared or doesn’t find it offensive, then they are just waiting for the leader to tell them all to go, there will be less reasons to contest that decision later on.

There’s usually that one guy, the lieutenant (beta or gamma), who might find certain things offensive, whether to himself, his group, or his leader. So to defend his leader’s honor, he often picks or starts fights with people. That’s because in a sense, the lieutenant’s social status is dependent upon his leader and group’s social status in the urban jungle. If it there is insult or decline in it, then his own status also declines. For someone lower on the totem pole, that’s not really a concern, but for someone near the top of his own social hierarchy, it is a concern.

The ideal of an alpha is one that has hidden resources, talents, powers, or non physical traits like ruthlessness backing it up. That makes em like a superhero or masked ally of justice, to his own team. But only to his own team. This resource may be political or alliance connections. It may be economic wealth. It may be physical prowess or mastery of arcane or lethal force.

In modern society, people follow orders because their Authority told them to, but their Authority is generally the Law or some nebulous, arcane, or abstract figure who they don’t know. I think people are usually somewhat dissatisfied with that. Women used to subordinate themselves to the authority of their father, mother, older brother, older sister, etc. Which seemed to work fine, mostly. Now they are told they are equal to everybody else, except the Omnipotent Abstract Authority on the throne of political and legal power. And they don’t feel comfortable with that position of equality. They don’t feel confident, they rebel at any hint of disrespect, questioning, or challenge from their significant other. There is no hierarchy, and that usually means war and conflict. It was one thing for their ancestors to rebel, they knew what they were getting into with feminism and lobbying for equal voting or work opportunities. They had a chance at motherhood and even tried it out, but wanted something more. These days, the modern “normals” are on the path because somebody told them to get on that path. Which is little different from the patrician authority the feminist first wave ancestors fought against, refusing to do as they were told.

[Transition to the writing about the South before and after Civil War I]

The legions still loyal to the Democrat culture and cause, must paint Lincoln and Sherman in one fashion because of how they defeated their enemies, even though Grant killed a lot more on both sides. Much in the same way Pinochet is feared and reviled for killing Leftists. It’s because he actually killed Leftists, too many of them, and the majority weren’t just innocents, which the Left would prefer in the case of Ted Kennedy at least.

The Democrat cause became aligned with the Leftist cause soon after they joined into an alliance. Never were they for civil rights, state’s rights, or anything else that the propaganda claimed. It was mostly to support the Democrat aristocracy’s base of power, economic or political.

As a result, most of America’s recent wars have been literally sabotaged by Democrats for one reason or another. Even in the countries that America’s military was not told to go to, such as Cuba, Iran, Rhodesia, etc, the Democrats still helped them to be destroyed. The war thing is mostly a distraction or an unintended consequence of two different factions fighting in the US, and when one loses the fight, the allies overseas is lost as well. It’s not just a proxy war between the Taliban and America in Afghanistan, or the Soviets and the US in Vietnam, those conflicts are also proxy wars between Democrat traitors and every other faction in the US.

Democrats own blacks as slaves because blacks were always told that the Man was keeping them down and only white Democrat politicians could give them jobs and freedom from tyranny. Ironically, that’s what was told to white Southerners to get them to die for the Democrat power base in Civil War I. Somebody had to be a villain back there.

Reconstruction failed mostly because Sherman didn’t kill nearly enough of the Southern aristocracy. That was intentional. All the starvation, looting, and economic collapse was mostly the result of Democrats hoarding all the money and wealth in order to gain absolute control over the people, by conveniently finding a scapegoat while controlling the economic handouts. The KKK was ordered back then to lynch white Republicans, black Republicans, and anybody else that opposed Democrat political control. Any money that might have flowed in from Northern investors were killed off by assassinations and then Democrats took it over. But it was never going to be enough to actually feed the people or fix the broken Southern economy.

The Southern economy wasn’t fixed until people admitted openly to voting in Republicans and breaking the Democrat stranglehold. To the point where even now, Democrats have never forgiven the betrayal of the “Bible and gun clinging” Southerners. But that doesn’t mean the propaganda from 1820-1880 was merely forgotten by descendants of propagandized and manipulated families. Black families often believe Lincoln was a Democrat, thus giving their fealty to an enemy of their race, the Democrat machine. It is easy for them to justify, and that was only a few decades under Democrat rule. The Southern families have been under Democrat rot for a lot longer than that.

Sword History in Britain

March 4, 2015

Courtesy of a mailing list from Sword Buyer’s Guide Online. I did quite a bit of research there in the beginning.

Hardcore fighters vs moderate majorities

March 1, 2015

VoxDay wrote up an interesting piece concerning different fighters or humans in a conflict/war, with Christianity being the focus.

I reproduced my comment reply here.

Over the last number of years, from around 2005 perhaps, I’ve found interesting clues that Western modern education doesn’t tend to touch upon.

“Out of every one hundred men, ten shouldn’t even be there, eighty are just targets, nine are the real fighters, and we are lucky to have them, for they make the battle. Ah, but the one, one is a warrior, and he will bring the others back.”

This statistical narrative falls in line with the US Revolution, where 3% were the firebrands and active pushers. 33% was Loyalist. 33% was moderate or stuck on the fence looking. 33% was slightly in support. That 1-3% chunk, though, were the ones pushing it, however. They were outliers.

I’ve heard that Japanese colleges teach about the trial of Socrates, studying the accusers and the defendant’s wording. It was all documented too, for us in the modern times, since the Islamic Hordes failed to burn all of it at Alexandria.

I would rather die having spoken in my manner, than speak in your manner and live. For neither in war nor yet in law ought any man use every way of escaping death. For often in battle there is no doubt that if a man will throw away his arms, and fall on his knees before his pursuers, he may escape death, if a man is willing to say or do anything. The difficulty, my friends, is not in avoiding death, but in avoiding unrighteousness; for that runs deeper than death. – Socrates before the Athenian death panel

I thought Socrates was being obedient to Law, when taking his sentence and refusing Plato’s and his student’s escape plan. But judging by the long list of words he lectured the Athenians on, Socrates was taking the opposite stance, it seemed. He was contemptuous of the state’s ability to deal death when it comes to forcing people to obey, because he was only obeying his own conscience and ensuring that future generations would know just who did what in those days. Which turned out to be true, people still remember that, and if not the West, then the Japanese.

Some other quotes highlight risk taking vs conservative risk avoidance.

“‘He either fears his fate too much,
Or his dessert is small,
Who fears to put it to the touch,
And win or lose it all.’ – Montrose’s Toast

“Cause pain before you injure. Injure before you maim. Maim before you kill. And if you must kill, make it a clean kill. Squeeze every drop of life from the opponent. Because life is so precious, it cannot be wasted, even in death.”

“Let him cut your skin, and you cut his flesh. Let him cut your flesh, and you cut his bones. Let him cut your bones, and you cut off his life.”

I think from an end retrospective, 30% of frontline fighters being backed up by 70% back end support is workable. Obviously it can be said that people are in war in Iraq while others are shopping at the mall, but in a modern culture that’s somewhat unavoidable. It’s not necessarily bad either, it’s only bad when the 30% gets sent off a cliff, while the 70% vote on whose bipartisan interests it would be best to fund. 2 Wolves and a lamb voting on what’s for dinner. Even in WWII, the people who refused to shoot the enemy or otherwise couldn’t do so with any real accuracy, at least loaded the guns for the shooters that did want to and could shoot the enemy in the face. While that is not necessarily ideal, it is not something to be ashamed of either. Humans have always specialized in a free economy, with war being free in one sense of the term. You’re free to die or win based upon your own contribution and your side’s contributions (or lack of).

This would explain why I often said in 2008 onwards that what people needed to feel was hate or any other strong emotion that motivated them to fight. It appeared to me at the time that many people just didn’t want to confront or fight the Left. They were satisfied with diplomacy or bipartisan deals. The only people the American people were willing to fight were foreign jihadists, and part of that was due to social conformity and propaganda.

I wanted people to be personally motivated in fighting the enemy, which just happened to be closer to us than most people wanted to realize.

While warriors and soldiers can fight an enemy without feeling hate, fear, anger, or love, the same cannot be said for risk averse moderate majorities. And without the moderate majority, we don’t really have an army. We just have a bunch of targets that is going to get sliced off in a pocket and then annihilated. That is often enough to generate an Alamo, an infamous Last Stand, or the Battle of Thermopylae, but that isn’t enough to win a war.