Tedenski izbor

branje2

Nemtsov had been preparing for an anti-Kremlin march scheduled for this Sunday. Hours before he was killed, he did a radio interview urging people to attend the march, and connecting the country’s economic woes to Putin’s policy in Ukraine. “The most important reason for the crisis is aggression, which led to sanctions and, in turn, isolation,” he said. Nemtsov understood that he, along with everyone else involved in anti-Putin politics, was being pushed to the fringes, having less of a voice and a foothold in Russian society than ever before. “Three years ago, we were an opposition. Now we are no more than dissidents,” he told the Financial Times earlier this week.

Then why was he killed? Without knowing who gave the orders, it’s possible to understand that the current political environment allowed for this to happen.

Assassination in Moscow – Joshua Jaffa, The New Yorker

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Ko našim družbenim problemom iščemo skupni imenovalec, v jedru najdemo nerazumevanje mehanizma kritike. Ovira nas pri vsem, česar se lotimo. Vzdržuje stanje, v katerem ni mogoče ničesar dobro začeti, kaj šele karkoli zaključiti. Recimo nujnih političnih in socialnih reform ali malo bolj drznih gospodarskih zamisli. Z njimi namreč pride kritika, utemeljena in deloma tudi neutemeljena. Pa zgrešena, škodoželjna, destruktivna. Pa nizkotna, taka, ki zgolj meče polena pod noge, in vedno tudi kritika, ki je uperjena proti osebi in ne njenim dejanjem. Problem s kritiko je, da si ljudje z njo ne znajo pomagati, da je ne znajo ločiti na uporabno in neuporabno. Ne vem, ampak sumim, da se nekaj zalomi pri permisivni vzgoji in socializaciji: niti primarna niti sekundarna nam očitno ne povesta, da je kritika, sposobnost podajanja in sprejemanja, temeljno orodje vsake spremembe in napredka.

(…)

Želja po vrhunskem rezultatu, ki bi izvirala iz sodelovanja, ne obstaja, obstaja le želja po samodokazovanju. Redki imajo vizije, ki bi segale čez nje same. Glavno vodilo vsakega početja je napuh. Namesto da bi dajali in podpirali velikopotezne zamisli, ki so potrebne temeljite kritike, preden lahko rodijo.

Nismo majhni, pač pa malenkostni. In razlika je velika.

To jemljem skrajno osebno – Mojca Pišek, Dnevnik

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Why are people so incredibly thin-skinned? I think it’s down to the politics of identity. I think the more we’ve made the personal political, the more we define our social and political outlook with reference to what’s in our underpants or what colour our skin is, the more we experience every criticism of our beliefs as an attack on our very personhood, our souls, our right to exist. The problem here is the terrifying wrapping together of the biological and the political, the packaging up of the accident of your gender or race or sexuality with your political persona, to the extent that debate itself comes to be seen as a form of hatred, a ‘phobia’.

Identity politics is spreading, filling the chasm where the politics of ideas used to be.

Identity politics has created an army of vicious, narcissistic cowards – Brendan O’Neill, The Spectator

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Several friends contacted me over the weekend with news that Wesleyan University has taken the ever-expanding list of initials used to refer to sexual identities to new heights of absurdity or sensitivity, depending on one’s perspective. We are now apparently up to fifteen letters: LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM.

It is easy to laugh at such gibberish on the grounds that it is as absurd as it is self-regarding. Yet that would be a mistake. First, there is the long-established inability of such groups to laugh at themselves. Indeed, the new libertinism often makes the old Puritanism look comparatively self-effacing and gently playful.

(…)

Wesleyan College is not to be criticized but congratulated, at least in terms of the transparency and consistency of its vision. It is simply an honest and consistent example of the moralizing amorality of this present age. It denies intrinsic moral significance to sex and enforces this through a proliferation of sexual categories designed to outlaw any claims to the contrary. It is therefore those who have campaigned to turn sex into mere recreation and who now express surprise and dismay that this has created a less, not more, liberal society, who are to be decried for the fools that they are.

Congratulating Wesleyan – Carl R. Trueman, First Things

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I’ll lay some of my cards on the table. It’s obviously a massive generalization to suggest that there’s a common “working-class” or “poor community” culture—in fact, one of the best contributions of Cherlin’s book is his delineation of the many ways in which working-class and less-educated people have adopted beliefs and practices which began as upper-class norms. But here are some things I believe which go against the norms of my own overeducated class. This list is not exhaustive:

  • It’s okay to marry young. It’s okay to have children before you’re financially stable. It is a good and beautiful thing when people without money have kids, even if they have little prospect of ever achieving financial stability. The problem is not with the parents, but with those who don’t offer material support so they can care for their kids.
  • Have more kids. The whole “have fewer, but invest in each one more” mentality, which Cherlin promotes, is the mentality which brought us helicopter parenting.
  • Playing in dirt is better than being shuttled to a score of structured, supervised afterschool activities.
  • Children should learn obedience as well as independent thought. We need to learn how to say “yes,” and to whom; we need more than critical thinking skills.
  • If you get pregnant in college, have the baby.

The point here isn’t that I want you to agree with me about each of these specific moral claims. Most of them can be abused. Some of them become much shakier when other elements of a coherent moral worldview are absent—delaying marriage but not childbearing isn’t the best possible path. And, most important, as a Christian I believe that “Judge not, lest ye be judged” is a central part of the moral life. My task is to love and serve regardless of what other people do, not come up with rules for how others should conduct themselves.

Sociology as Class War – Eve Tushnet, The American Conservative

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Putin has perfected the art of moistening the eyes of Russian elites assembled in opulent tsarist settings, plucking the strings of mystical pride in all things Russian and of ressentiment at all things Western. They see reason where critics see madness. From the Kremlin’s perspective, as Washington engages in stupid, hypocritical, and destabilizing global behavior, Moscow shoulders the burden of serving as a counterweight, thereby bringing sanity and balance to the international system. Russian lying, cheating, and hypocrisy thus serve a higher purpose. Cybercrime is patriotism; rigging elections and demobilizing opposition are sacred duties. Putin’s machismo posturing, additionally, is undergirded by a view of Russia as a country of real men opposing a pampered, gutless, and decadent West. Resentment toward U.S. power resonates far beyond Russia, and with his ramped-up social conservatism, Putin has expanded a perennial sense of Russian exceptionalism to include an alternative social model as well.

Paradoxically, however, all of this has only helped render Russia what the analyst Lilia Shevtsova has aptly called a “lonely power.” Putin’s predatory politics at home and abroad, his cozying up to right-wing extremists in Europe, and his attempted engagement of a powerful China hardly add up to an effective Russian grand strategy. Russia has no actual allies and has damaged its most important relationship, that with Germany.

The Resistable Rise of Vladimir Putin – Stephen Kotkin, Foreign Affairs

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Nikakor ne mislim, da je Grčija žrtev zarote finančnih trgov, saj so za trenutno stanje svojega dolga primarno krivi sami. Njihovo gospodarstvo je bilo enostavno predolgo nekonkurenčno – ali, če vam je ljubše, Nemčija je bila preveč konkurenčna, da bi si Grki z njo delili denarno politiko. Dasiravno so od rastočega grškega dolga imele primarno korist finančne institucije, te Grkov v dolg niso zavedle. Za to so bili dovolj že njihovi politiki sami. Še več, finančna plat njihovega trenutnega dogovora s trojko je videti malodane sanjsko. Za Grčijo namreč. Posojilodajalci, med drugim jaz in vi, jim v trenutnem aranžmaju denar posojamo skoraj brezobrestno. Dolg do EU je namreč obrestovan po približno 0,5-odstotni nominalni letni obrestni meri. Je torej praktično zastonj. Dolg preostalih članic EU bremenijo bistveno višje obrestne mere in tudi znatno krajše ročnosti od grškega.

Zatakne se pri pogojih, ki jih morajo Grki izpolniti, da lahko sproti črpajo posojilne tranše. Ti so zadnjih pet let mlinski kamen okoli grškega gospodarstva in slednjega držijo v komatoznem stanju. Namesto da bi spodbujale potrebne in dolgoročne makroekonomske reforme, je njihov cilj kratkoročen. Varčevanje pri javnih izdatkih. To naj bi zagotavljalo redno poplačilo kreditov. Če pacienta pred tem ne pobere. Zdravnik je namreč med drugim predpisal zelo močne odmerke radiacije (4,5-odstotni presežek primarnega proračuna), pacient pa je bil poleg tega pred začetkom zdravljenja zelo šibkega zdravja. Zdravilo tako ni pomagalo pacientu, služilo je zgolj za mirnejši spanec posojilodajalcev. Grški BDP je še do lani strmo padal, lani se je padanje sicer nekoliko umirilo, a redko kdo v tem vidi uspeh politike varčevanja.

Kako torej rešiti Grke pred njihovimi »dobrohotnimi« rešitelji, je izrednega pomena, ne samo za izžete trenutne dolžnike, temveč predvsem za vse tiste, ki se bodo v prihodnosti kdaj znašli v podobnem položaju. Ne gre zgolj za tehniko pogojevanja posojil, temveč je vprašanje konceptualno. Ali vztrajamo pri katarzi, skozi katero morajo dolžniki, da bi jih spustili nazaj med polnopravne države, ali pa je s pogojevanjem treba najti recept, ki bo zagotavljal odplačevanje dolgov ter hkratno rast in razvoj dolžnika.

Kaj bo prinesla Siriza? – Črt Kostevc, Dnevnik

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Varoufakis was visibly relieved. He has – we think – averted a bank run and total surrender, but only by beating a retreat from what Syriza promised in the aftermath of the election.

Syriza’s left will criticise this – and they will criticise the conduct of Varoufakis and his team who seemed to have very few bullets left in the clip by this evening. But because Varoufakis can sell this as “better than it could have been” I would expect there to be relief, and the anger focused on Germany, on the Greek streets this holiday weekend.

Asked what happens if the IMF/EU do not agree the list Syriza presents on Monday, Varoufakis said, disarmingly, “then we are finished”. But if it can be agreed, there is a massive amount Syriza can do on policies not tied to its fiscal limits, and four months only takes us to the end of June, which has always been “riot season” in the Greek crisis.

The strategic crisis is not over. But the damage to trust and solidarity, with one nation – Germany – being seen to attempt to force another’s electorate into total surrender – is real.

Greece gets its deal: but if the detail’s wrong, ‘we’re finished’ – Paul Mason, Channel 4 News blogs

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With no journalists, local or foreign, able to operate inside Syria’s sixth-largest city, courageous local activists have given the Observer a detailed account of life under the jihadists’ totalitarian regime, a rare glimpse of everyday life in the city.

Their testimony reveals the evolution of a community brutally divided into haves and have-nots, with Isis enjoying well-resourced services including “private” hospitals and a relatively high standard of living as many residents struggle to make ends meet.

Inside the Islamic State’s Capital: Red Bull-drinking jihadists, hungry civilians, crucifixions and air strikes – Mark Townsend, The Guardian

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But if ISIS are a heresy, their spiritual rejection and condemnation can only come from religion. Heresy is crushed by orthodoxy, not by the emperor (or any other secular institution). Though we may continue to deplore ISIS’s screech that ‘God is on our side’ with calls of ‘theocrat’ and ‘fascist,’ we should remember: Messages can only be understood and countered in the mode in which they are given. Meeting a religion of death with a vague liberal humanism is about as rhetorically sufficient as meeting an insult to your mother by seeking to prove, scientifically, that the insult could not be true. A perverse theology is met by a real theology: God is not on your side, He is with His Church, and He will wreak terrible justice on the wolves who seek to scatter His flock. Your god is not God, he is an ‘it,’ an idol, snapped in half by the living God. Your name is cursed. Your creed is a creed of demons. You use ashes and ghosts to fortress your vanity; your moronic, masturbatory TV-drama of death. You oppress the poor, the widow, and the orphan, and your sins cry to Heaven for vengeance. You have no god, neither in your theology nor in your heart, and your fate is the fate of the godless. Repent of your sins and be saved.

Such speech would hardly do for our politicians, but it is the only speech I have found properly satisfies a a spiritual need to confront the murderers we cannot fight, a rhetoric alongside of which the rhetoric of post-Christianity appears wasted and wan.

Insulting ISIS – Marc Barnes, Bad Catholic

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Both Christian and Islamic fundamentalism are traditionalist in some respects but quite modern in others, and some of the most important elements in their back-to-the sources vision tend to be only comprehensible in a modern political-intellectual context, both as reactions against and imitations of secular trends and patterns and ideas.

In the Christian case, as I’ve argued elsewhere, everything from the pseudoscientific rigors of Ken Ham-style creationism to the detailed apocalyptic roadmaps of dispensationalism owes much more to the Social Darwinist and Marxist milieu of the later 19th and early 20th century than it does to older forms of Christian orthodoxy. The Islamic case has its own distinctives, not all of which I’m qualified to address. But much of what we think of as Muslim fundamentalism seems to be linked 1) to Islamic civilization’s unhappy encounters with Western imperialism and liberal modernity, and 2) to a kind of modernity-influenced Islamic reformation that already happened (…), that democratized religious interpretation and undercut an older clerical-theological consensus, and that in so doing opened doors for the kind of theological autodidacts currently running the Islamic State.

(…)

The important truth here (…) is that ISIS is not just comprised of “modern secular people” in a religious disguise; it is comprised, at least among its more sophisticated adherents, of sincerely religious people who reject secularism and liberalism no matter how many times they eat at Pizza Hut. But this truth should not obscure the fact that these people and their motivations are themselves modern in some important ways, that to be anti-secular and illiberal is not necessarily the same as being medieval or traditional, and that just because ISIS is at war with the secular and liberal does not mean that its claim to speak on behalf of pre-modern Islam against some impure modern variant is necessarily legitimate or should be given the benefit of the doubt.

In Defense of Islam – Ross Douthat, The New York Times

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V eseju Duša Evrope sem napisal nekaj misli o tem, da je vprašanje, kako muslimane integrirati v evropsko razsvetljensko tradicijo, veliko vprašanje prihodnosti. Danes je to videti kot kvadratura kroga. Seveda gre za ekstremizem, ampak bistva evropskega razsvetljenstva ni mogoče determinirati znotraj religioznega območja. Krščanstvo je pristalo na kompromise z velikimi reformami, pretresi  — pa ne samo z reformacijo, tudi s poznejšimi. Adaptiralo se je, pravzaprav je pristalo na neko laično obliko, medtem ko v islamu očitno in zaenkrat to ne gre. Evropski muslimani si verjetno želijo, da bi se te stvari spremenile. Tudi v Sloveniji to slišim, ampak glede tega je še veliko vprašanj.

Po drugi strani pa nas tudi mora biti strah lastne ksenofobije, ki je neprijetna in lahko povzroči strahotne pretrese. Seveda pa je tu problem njihove adaptacije — torej vprašanje, kako ohraniti in dovoliti svobodo za ene in druge. Zdi se mi, da bo ta vojna še trajala, preden najdemo nek modus vivendi. Zaenkrat pa smo v alarmantnem in napetem položaju.

Drago Jančar: “Usodo je treba ubesediti” – Zora Jurič, FokusPokus

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Ba co více: středověké křesťanství (které nebylo dobou temna, nýbrž dobou velice barevnou) mělo v sobě zabudovaný zdravý sebeironizující prvek jako obranu před idolatrií, modlářstvím v podobě masopustní karnevalové kultury – před přísným postem a po něm mniši „vypouštěli měchy“ a kostel se třásl smíchy, před nímž nic nebylo chráněno. (…) Masopustní humor má svůj zdravý smysl, je-li vyvážením asketické doby postu; masopust bez postu a ironie bez víry je jako most bez řeky či údolí. Na Havlíčkově rabelaisovské satiře ve Křtu svatého Vladimíra zkušené oko pozná, kolik si Havlíček přese všechno zachoval z víry svého mládí a jak se vyrovnává s jejím zraněním; „takhle se dovede rouhat jen katolík,“ říkával Jiří Němec.

U levicových ateistických „osmašedesátníků“ z redakce Charlie Hebdo těžko něco podobného najdete: za výsměchem je jen smutný a prázdný cynismus bývalých marxistů, kterým jejich bůh umřel a teď jim už nic není svaté. (Naše kdysi marxistické „osmašedesátníky“ paradoxně před kocovinou a nihilismem zachránila normalizační perzekuce, která jim umožnila najít novou identitu a smysl v disentu.)

Náboženství – ona vnější společensko-kulturní forma víry – jistě nemá být a nepotřebuje být chráněno před kritikou, humorem a satirou o nic více než třeba politika. Křesťanství neobyčejně získalo tím, že jako žádné jiné náboženství bylo vystaveno očistnému ohni osvícenské kritiky. Má vlastní teologie – stejně jako téměř celá současná křesťanská teologie – by byla mnohem chudší a povrchnější, kdyby nevzala vážně kritiku upadlých forem náboženství z úst Feuerbacha, Nietzscheho, Marxe či Freuda.
Avšak mění-li se kritika v hrubý výsměch, a nejde-li jen o náboženské instituce, nýbrž o víru, o intimní vztah člověka k Bohu, který souvisí s lidskou identitou stejně hluboce jako rasa, národ a rodina (ať už se člověk do rodiny víry narodil, nebo si ji zvolil), tam by kulturní člověk měl sám cítit jistý ostych. Nedejme se mást tím, že západoevropští křesťané jsou už zvyklí být fackovacím panákem liberálních médií a i většina církevních představitelů ví, že je moudřejší projevy blasfemie na divadelních a festivalových scénách či na televizní obrazovce ignorovat, aby jim svými protesty nedělali zbytečnou reklamu. Trénovat v tom muslimy je poněkud bizarní koníček.

[Še več: srednjeveško krščanstvo (ki ni bilo obdobje temačnosti, temveč barvitosti) je v sebi imelo vgrajeno zdravo samoironično varovalo pred malikovalstvom, ki se je odražalo v karnevalski kulturi pustnega obdobja: pred postom in po njem so menihi dali prosto pot svoji hudomušnosti in cerkve so se tresle od smeha, pred katerim nič ni bilo varno (…) Pustni humor ima svoj zdravi smisel, če je v ravnovesju z asketskim obdobjem posta; pust brez posta ter ironija brez vere sta kakor most brez reke ali doline. V Havlíčkovi rabelaisovski satiri v Plesu Sv. Vladimirja lahko pozoren bralec opazi, kako je v Havlíčkovem norčevanju iz religije vendarle mogoče zaznati prvine njegove mladostniške vere: tako ”tako bogokletno se zna rogati le katoličan,” je rekel Jiří Němec.

Med levičarji ”generacije ’68” iz redakcije Charlie Hebdo boste težko našli kaj podobnega: iz njihovega humorja veje zgolj prazni in žalostni ateizem nekdanjih marksistov, za katere je Bog umrl in jim nič več ni sveto. (Naše nekdanje marksiste iz ”generacije ’68” je, paradoksno, pred mačkom nihilizma ohranilo preganjanje s strani ”normalizacije” /evfemizem za režim, ki je sledil praški pomladi, op. ur./, ki jim je omogočila, da so našli nov smisel in identiteto v disidentstvu.)

Religija – zunanja, družbeno-kulturna oblika vere –si zaščite pred kritiko, humorjem in satiro seveda ne zasluži nič bolj kot politika. Niti je ne potrebuje. Krščanstvo je ogromno pridobilo s tem, da je bilo, bolj kot katerakoli druga religija, izpostavljeno očiščevalnemu ognju razsvetljenske kritike. Moja lastna teologija – kakor tudi malodane vsa sodobna krščanska teologija – bi bila mnogo revnejša in bolj površna, če se ne bi morala resno soočiti s kritikami okostenelih religioznih form, ki so jih podali Feuerbach, Nietzsche in Freud.

Toda ko se kritika sprevrže v grobo posmehovanje, katere tarča niso le religiozne institucije, temveč sama vera kot intimni odnos človeka z Bogom, ki je tako tesno povezana s človeško identiteto kot rod, narod ali družina (pa naj se je posameznik rodil v določeno vero ali si jo je prosto izbral), bi moral vsak kulturni človek začutiti določen sram. Ne pustimo se zavesti dejstvu, da so zahodnoevropski kristjani že vajeni tega, da so vir posmeha liberalnih medijev, in da celo večina cerkvenih predstavnikov ve, da je brezštevilne manifestacije blasfemije v gledališčih, na festivalskih odrih in televizijskih ekranih modreje ignorirati, kot da bi jim s svojimi protesti po nepotrebnem delali reklamo. Treniranje muslimanov, da se tega navadijo tudi sami, je dokaj bizarni konjiček.]

Humor k náboženství patří, hrubý výsměch ne – Tomáš Halík, Lidové noviny

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The world, to be sure, is a complicated and often tragic and often deeply unfair place. It contains famines and genocides and war, births and deaths, Katy Perry and Björk, Big Macs and kale and Bloomin’ Onions, privilege and the lack of it, llamas that are caged and llamas that are free. And we humans—animals who are striving to be so much more—have a big say in the balance between the good and the bad. We should not be glib about any of that. Nor should we lose sight of the fact that, if you find yourself with the ability to use the most transformational communications platform the world has ever known to engage in debates about the color of a dress being sold on Amazon dot com, you are, fundamentally, extremely privileged. And thus in a better position than most to make the world better. Attention is a valuable thing; we have an obligation to be selective about where we direct it.

And yet. The problem with attention-policing—besides the fact that it tends to be accompanied by humorlessness and marmery, and besides the other fact that it serves mostly to amplify the ego of the person doing the policing—is that it undermines the value of Internet memes themselves.

(…)

Theorists of play, from Huizinga to Piaget, have pointed out how powerful the infrastructures of games can be. They allow us to explore ideas and bond in a mutually-agreed-upon environment.

(…)

And what are memes if not games? They are small; they are low-stakes; they are often silly. (Sorry, #llamadrama.) But they are also communal. They invite us to participate, to adapt, to joke, to create something together, under the auspices of the same basic rules. That is not a small thing. That is, in fact, a huge thing—particularly when it comes to the very concerns the attention police like to remind us of. If we have any hope of solving the world’s most systemic and sweeping problems, we will have to come together.

#TheDress and the Rise of Attention Policing – Megan Garber, The Atlantic

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One must note the obvious fact that real villages/towns are limited in time and space. They are necessarily small, while also being inescapably diverse: they hold people of different ages, interests, vocations, ideas, and values (while it is still worth noting that some communities are not diverse enough, and can fall into the sort of tribalism that is, in fact, deleterious to true community).

The “virtual village” (…) on the other hand, is a mass. It cannot be easily defined, and does not have limits. It is movement-driven and emotionally-oriented, a beast quick to react with passion instead of with reason—and thus, interestingly enough, prone to the same sort of tribalism that is so often condemned in real-world villages. On social media, you can choose and curate a “village” according to ideological or characteristic preference—by unfriending or following, you create the space and listen to the voices that you prefer, those that suit your own virtues and vices. This can lead members of the virtual village to become calloused or ignorant toward issues outside of their sphere of interest.

Second, while real villages/towns are often nosy and gossipy and contentious, the people within them live, work, worship, and rest together. Their lives are inexplicably intertwined, and cannot be turned off or logged off. Thus, people in a real village must learn to forgive, to work through differences, to heal hurts and find societal solutions to real-world dilemmas. The “virtual village,” on the other hand, gives us the opportunity to disconnect whenever we become offended or angry. It enables us to be as nasty, narcissistic, and demeaning as we please—with very few real-world consequences. And this creates a dangerous sort of atmosphere, one that is in fact poisonous to real community.

The Internet & Parched Souls – Gracy Olmstead, The American Conservative

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So if people with depression show classic sickness behaviour and sick people feel a lot like people with depression – might there be a common cause that accounts for both? The answer to that seems to be yes, and the best candidate so far is inflammation – a part of the immune system that acts as a burglar alarm to close wounds and call other parts of the immune system into action. (…)

As evidence like this continues to stack up, it’s not surprising that some people have shifted their attention to what might be causing the inflammation in the first place. (…)

Add this to the fact that stress, particularly the kind that follows social rejection or loneliness, also causes inflammation, and it starts to look as if depression is a kind of allergy to modern life – which might explain its spiralling prevalence all over the world as we increasingly eat, sloth and isolate ourselves into a state of chronic inflammation.

Is depression a kind of allergic reaction – Caroline Williams, The Guardian

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American media, medical authorities, corporations, and other agents have decided to ignore these cultural differences in favor of promoting a one-size-fits-all model of mental distress. The only cultural narrative they will accept is the American narrative: Distress and suffering are illnesses like any other; human beings are fragile physical vessels, easily broken by trauma but fixable by medication and therapy; other people’s religions and traditions may be nice ornamentation, but the real treatment comes from psychiatrists and drugs; what works in Schenectady will work about as well in Suriname.

Watters exposes the assumptions and blithe overconfidence behind this worldview. He also suggests a deeper, implicit critique of American atomistic culture. The chapter on Sri Lanka shows how Sri Lankans understood trauma as stemming not from individual suffering but from loss of social support; misery could be bearable as long as it had company. This communal culture provided resilience that was often overlooked by the individualistic symptom checklists of American therapists.

America’s Imperial Mental Illness – Eve Tushnet, The American Conservative

***

Trying to push society even deeper into the denial of religious conscience, some of the world’s most prestigious medical and bioethics journals have published articles arguing that nursing homes should be legally required to withhold spoon feeding from incompetent Alzheimer’s patients when the person’s written advance directive so instructs. A lawsuit toward that end is currently pending in British Columbia. Imagine: If this proposed policy is implemented, nurses will be required to starve some of their patients to death—even if the care receiver eats willingly or begs for food.

If these trends continue, twenty years from now, those who feel called to a career in health care will face an agonizing dilemma: either participate in acts of killing or stay out of medicine. Those who stay true to their consciences will be forced into the painful sacrifice of embracing martyrdom for their faith.

The Coming of Medical Martyrdom – Wesley J. Smith, First Things

***

Ida reveals history is bloody and messy. And if there is one truth that reigns, then it’s the Girardian one that victims frequently become victimizers. (…) It is the real genius of great art to unveil these uncomfortable truths to us subtly. Ida does this exceedingly well.

1 Thing Nobody Noticed about Oscar Best Foreign Film Winner Ida – Artur Rosman, Cosmos The In Lost

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