Our Discordia

General Category => Why Bother? => Topic started by: Kaspar Hauser on July 10, 2014, 12:10:40 pm

Title: Why Bother With This Message Board?
Post by: Kaspar Hauser on July 10, 2014, 12:10:40 pm
Well, in an attempt to answer the question, "Why bother with yet another message board that will surely end up vanishing into the void?", I refer to George Orwell's WHY I WRITE and a little encouragement from a guitarist/philosopher who posted years ago at whywork.org.

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Putting aside the need to earn a living, I think there are four great motives for writing, at any rate for writing prose. They exist in different degrees in every writer, and in any one writer the proportions will vary from time to time, according to the atmosphere in which he is living. They are:

(i) Sheer egoism. Desire to seem clever, to be talked about, to be remembered after death, to get your own back on the grown-ups who snubbed you in childhood, etc., etc. It is humbug to pretend this is not a motive, and a strong one. Writers share this characteristic with ... the whole top crust of humanity. The great mass of human beings are not acutely selfish. After the age of about thirty they almost abandon the sense of being individuals at all — and live chiefly for others, or are simply smothered under drudgery. But there is also the minority of gifted, willful people who are determined to live their own lives to the end, and writers belong in this class. Serious writers, I should say, are on the whole more vain and self-centered than journalists, though less interested in money.

(ii) Aesthetic enthusiasm.

(iii) Historical impulse. Desire to see things as they are, to find out true facts and store them up for the use of posterity.

(iv) Political purpose. — Using the word ‘political’ in the widest possible sense. Desire to push the world in a certain direction, to alter other peoples’ idea of the kind of society that they should strive after. Once again, no book is genuinely free from political bias. The opinion that art should have nothing to do with politics is itself a political attitude.

Maybe a combination of sheer egoism and political purpose.  I consider wanting to have a forum for stating unpopular opinions to be "political" in the widest sense possible. 

So, why post on this message board?  When "isis" was up - strangely, as of 2014, now ISIS is an acronym for something totally unrelated to what we had been discussing (strange coincidence) - one I will refer to as Q, the guitarist/philosopher, had given me a pleasant shock when he wrote the following:

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Life is a mess. I once referred to you (elsewhere) as "perhaps the greatest thinker alive" and although that's hyperbolic, it isn't too far from the truth. I certainly ain't too impressed with the thinkers the mainstream keeps telling me are geniuses. But I also understand you are deeply troubled. Hell, how could you not be, by now? I'm fairly troubled myself.

The world, such is as it is, will probably never know you for anything but some "crazy" guy who gets drunk, does disturbing things, and gets arrested. It's all they CAN see, so it's all they WILL see. But please do remember that at least a few of us do see far more in you. So much more that it makes your treatment seem tragically comical. I'm not hesitant to say this because I believe you see it the same way.

I've missed posting here. Maybe I shouldn't have run off, I dunno. It is what it is. This forum, although populated mainly by crickets and tumbleweeds, remains one of the most highly-concentrated truth and sanity sources anywhere - but of course not mainstream "sanity." Insane sanity, I guess. The sort of sanity you have to go crazy to see.

I still think that having a "highly-concentrated truth and sanity source" is reason enough to forge ahead even if it is another exercise in futility.  How else am I to show the side of me that a money-based status-symbol based society is incapable of receiving or acknowledging in any meaningful way?

I tried the blog, and yet, when I get some kind of comment, I want to engage in a dialogue ... so the blog, while it serves as a storage bin (a cloud that does not depend on me to preserve the actual hardware its stored on), it is not very good for engaging with the one or two like-minded individuals who wish to step up and validate my presence as more than just some "crazy" guy who gets drunk, does disturbing things, and gets arrested.

As far as the name of the message board goes, the seed is "Why Bother?" - but, knowing me the way I know me, I might as well confess right now that, as long as I am able to change the name, I most likely will keep changing it ... Let's just say, the name of this message board is dynamic.  It is only a label, after all.

If anyone strongly objects to any "administrative adjustments" I make, since there are so few of us, your input will be influential. 

Should some unexpected disaster occur to any of us, it is difficult to tell what happened.  Some people like to dodge the radar.  If I stop posting for a stretch, keep checking in ... I might eventually post some interesting new chapter covering the details of real life.  When I stop posting, then, that's it.  It happens to all of us eventually.  We just disappear into the void.


Title: Re: Why Bother With This Message Board?
Post by: Kaspar Hauser on July 28, 2014, 08:01:26 pm
Flipping open a notebook from this past winter, I was taken aback by how the entry I was reading was so close to what I feel right now.  I did a search for this particular entry in Dead End to see if it had been typed into the collection of excerpts, and, sure enough, it had been.  I imagine myself reaching into a chest and picking up Notebook #29 from 1991 when I declared myself to be a Schopenhauer Disciple.  I wonder if I knew the full implications of that back then.  Now, I see myself today, this Steppenwolf a couple years away from the midnight hour (age 50), and I recognize that I certainly was not playing around when I made that decision.  I was crystal clear.

And even this past winter, even in the midst of binge drinking, I was still very aware of my stance.

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2013.11.18

Global outrage over climate change caused by emissions from a way of life dependent on fossil fuels, i.e., automobiles and furnaces … Meanwhile, my voice is shot from singing and shouting yesterday. Now that all funds have once again quickly dwindled, I prepare to heal from a long binge, the longest binge I remember having engaged in in a long, long time.

I am just so disgusted with the systematic stupidity of my contemporaries. This arrogance and stupidity is reflected in their lifestyles, their large vehicles, and the corporations they serve – their Masters. As our industrialized society seems incapable of resisting this systematic stupidity, I am becoming more and more scornful of the hordes who enthusiastically conform to this meaningless way of life. My refusal to own a personal motor vehicle is an organic protest. If we are going to ween ourselves off dependency upon fossil fuels, we might start by sharing community vehicles that we share in an organized manner.   Would that be pure communism or basic communalism?

My literary interests reveal just how marginalized my intelligence is in comparison to mainstream culture. Have I finally come to appreciate the futility of concerning myself with public opinion?

Seeing people gather in stadiums and pay subscribers for cable television, identifying themselves with the cars they drive, buying status symbols to impress strangers who don't give a lick damn, it all leaves me with the feeling of living in an Orwellian Nightmare.

orwellian nightmare (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XrpJgX9yga8)