Lines of Departure 2.0

KRATMAN: It’s Up to You, Millennials. Deflect or Be Doomed

Dear Millennial:

“You’re in a heap o’ trouble, boy.”  Or girl.  What follows are the reasons – or at least the big ones – why you’re so thoroughly screwed, along with some suggestions for self-help at the end.

You tend to loathe Boomers and Generation X, I know.  I don’t actually blame you for that, at least not entirely.  Some of you, though, the Millennials who lump all the above together, without exception, strike me as singularly stupid and ignorant.  

Moreover, the reasons you have for loathing them are somewhat misplaced.  You tend to think – not without some reason – that the Boomers, especially, robbed their future, which is to say you, personally, to pay for largesse for themselves in the present.  

It’s true enough, but it is neither the really awful thing they did to you nor does the complaint portray you in any particularly favorable light.  “Those damned Boomers; they took everything and now there’s nothing left for us.”  Yeah…you know what that sounds like?  It sounds like the whining of one group of thieves over the success of a better or, in this case, merely luckier group of thieves who got to the big haul first.  Yes, it really does.

Sorry, but the damage the Boomers and Xers did to you wasn’t primarily fiscal.  No, no, the damage they did – or allowed – was to you, as a person.  That’s the real crime.  They didn’t’ just rob you of some money in advance.  They didn’t just vote for a series of politicians and political programs and giveaways that ran the economy into the ground.  

No, they stole from you – or allowed others to steal from you – some key elements of personhood, especially the ability to engage in critical, logical thinking.  That’s right, you were not educated, whether in kindergarten or in the kindergartenesque, safe space segregated, snowflake sanctuary schools we call colleges and universities.  Yes, these institutions of miseducation were supposed to teach you how to think.  Instead, they taught you what to think and stunted your native ability to think.  If you ever start to spout bright green feathers?  Yes, this is the reason why; your teachers demanded that you become a parrot.

This is, by the way, not restricted to your left-wing branch of Millennials; rightist, neo-right, and alt-right Millennials tend to show the same preferential substitution of the sound bite for actual thought and to be extremely vulnerable to propaganda.  Universal?  No.  Common?  Very.

Let’s look at a few examples, shall we?  The first of these is personal, to me.  I mention it largely because it was this precise instance that caused me to open my eyes to what academia has done to you.

A Millennial, then allegedly a law student at a top ten school, asserted that it was impossible for me to have taken a fifty percent overload in course work my last two years of law school, that there was an American Bar Association rule that forbade overloading in course work to that degree, so I was clearly a liar.  Unfortunately for his thesis, a) I did do that much course work, b) the rule dated from 1996, and c) I graduated in 1995.  

Assuming the kid wasn’t himself a liar, and was, in fact, enrolled at least in some law school, and maybe even a top ten law school, as claimed, there was no excuse for this.  He should have had a course in public law or legislation and should have realized, should have been taught, should have been made to realize, that dates matter and rules change.  Apparently, however, he never was.  Hell, he should have realized this even without a course in law or legislation; simple instruction in history, honestly applied in elementary school, should have been sufficient to give the stupid shit an understanding that things change.  

He lacked that understanding.  Rather, academia likely stole that understanding from him.  

Okay, okay; I hear you: “This was just a one off that proves nothing.”  Think so?  Read on.

As all right-thinking people know, Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was a right-wing atrocity against gays, hatched in the pernicious seventy-two degree corners of the doubleplusungood and evilwickedbadnaughty Pentagon, fought against nearly to the death by progressives…

That’s not remotely what happened.  Rather, the Uniform Code of Military Justice, as enacted by Congress, has long deemed Sodomy, which covered more than just homosexual conduct, as a criminal offense potentially carrying severe penalties.  Moreover, the procedure for entering into service demanded that prospective recruits deny or admit to homosexual leanings, in writing, which admissions would usually bar the man or woman from service.  Of course, back when the shame of being publicly homosexual was very great, people who wanted to join the armed forces simply lied about it and then, as a general rule, hid it while in service.    

Liberal Democratic President Bill Clinton, acting in his capacity as Commander in Chief of the armed forces, simply ordered that prospective recruits were not to be asked if they were gay or had homosexual leanings, and were not to volunteer the information.  That, young Millennial, is where DADT came from; it came from a liberal, liberally motivated, and pandering to his liberal base.

Did you know that?  No?  Well, then; ask yourself, WHY didn’t you know?

What the loss of history does to you, dear Millennial, is that it robs you of the ability to reason your way to cause and effect.  Never mind the crappy to the point of idiotic decisions and programs this might lead you to support, consider what it does to you as a person.  What, after all, is the effect of shielding people from contrary opinions by designating and maintaining, under color of law or regulation, “safe spaces” for this or that minority?  Does it make them stronger?  Better able to deal with a harsh world?  Does it change that objective world to something less harsh?  No and no and no; it does none of that.  Do you gain grit in a safe space?  Ha.  Do you learn endurance in a safe space?  Oh, please.  

No, It merely makes of them mollycoddles, weaklings, and in some important ways barely or not even human.  That’s the effect of a safe space, to render those who hide in them weak and ignorant.  

There are things worse than the safe space, though.  That only weakens your brain by making sure you never have to reason about or argue in defense of your beliefs.  And, at least, this moral weakening and brain-deadening thing is voluntary.  Much worse is the movement to restrict free speech and to manipulate speech for political ends.  This does what the safe space does, of course, but a simple saunter down memory lane shows it does so much more.  Want to starve ten or twenty or fifty million of your own people to death?  Want to gas a few million members of a despised minority?  Want to hack to death half a million countrymen?  Job one is attack speech.

Don’t you find it odd that your teachers have led you away from any history that would tend to show you that destruction and perversion of free speech is generally followed by massive murder?  Don’t you find it a little odd that they place offending someone as worse somehow than starving, gassing, or shooting them to death?

One might want to claim that these things only occur on the left-hand side of the Millennial generation, that the rightists, usually the alt-right, are immune to it.  Sadly not, the brain damage crosses all political lines.  Let me give you a related one from the other side of the spectrum.

A frequent plaint of the Millennial end of the Alt-Right goes to the effect of, “What did conservatism conserve, anyway?”  The presumptive answer is “nothing important.”  It’s also the complete bullshit answer.  

In order to arrive at that complete bullshit answer, one has to be, like the idiot law I mentioned, above, detached from history and from cause and effect.  The history is that for about forty-five years we were engaged in a life and death struggle with communism, the most bloody-handed political and intellectual atrocity in human history.  “Oh, but that was just a ‘Cold War’,” We hear from the peanut gallery.  Yeah.  No.  It was a long war, with several active campaigns, with casualties that rivaled those we suffered in the Great War, and where the country was fairly thoroughly infiltrated by the enemy’s acolytes and minions, who arose before the Boomers did, and where the United States also had serious internal problems not of our recent making for the enemy to exploit.  What conservatives preserved, through all this, were the forms of republican government, and a fair amount of the substance.  They did this while carrying on that very expensive cold war to victory.  Moreover, the odds were against them.  These were not nothing.

Do you like being able to keep and bear arms?  Do you appreciate that the left cannot ultimately win because you retain the ability to physically fight them?  Are you happy that you needn’t stand for the playing of The Internationale? Thank a conservative of the sixties and seventies who fought the good fight, him- and herself, holding on, delaying the left, until, finally, with Heller and McDonald, the reborn conservative Supreme Court could send the gun grabbers running for their fainting couches, after Reagan saw the Soviet Union into the trash heap of history

In short, the plaint, “What did conservatism conserve, anyway?” is just another whiney bitch meme of people detached from history and from cause and effect.  Yes, that’s probably you.

That’s okay; cheer up.  Why?  Because if you’re reading this you’re probably not the worst among your generation.  Apparently, about forty-five percent of you would vote for a socialist.

“What’s wrong with socialism?” a Millennial may ask.  There’s nothing wrong with it, of course, except that it never has worked and never will.  That, and the lawlessness, the tyranny, the starvation, the shoddy products, the secret police with unappealable power of life and death, the hopelessness and helplessness, the mind control, the incredible damage to the natural environment, the labor camps – which included forced prostitution, by the way, the tens – nay, probably the hundreds of millions of dead, all laid at the feet of communism and socialism.  

For Jesus’ sake, about a third of you think George Bush killed more people than Joseph Stalin!  That’s the world prize of ignorance!  It doesn’t get any more complete than that.

You cannot believe that there is nothing wrong with socialism – even educated and thoughtful socialists know there are problems – unless you are, again, detached from history, unable to link cause and effect, unable to think, and abysmally ignorant.  

(Oh, yes, and all you idiots sporting “Che” t-shirts?  I have it on pretty good authority that communist revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara died shrieking and crying like a little girl, and begging for mercy.  So do, by all means, continue to wear those shirts.  Really.)

And I’m not even going to touch on the dunder-headed idiocies of the neo-confederates or the alt-Reich.

All this is only the tip of the iceberg.  Look around, examples of your generation’s stunted ability to reason and weak, ranging to non-existent, grasp of history are not hard to find.  Look inside yourself, too, even if you might not much like what you see there.

There would be little point in writing this without holding forth some hope for you, as well as holding forth on the reason to change yourselves.

Why should you change?  I won’t spout love of country or preservation of our civilization to you.  Too many of you prefer communism to democracy – and lack clue one about what either is – for me to expect much from that.  Too many of you have been propagandized into the belief that the United States of America is unutterably evil, wicked from the beginning, and fit only for destruction.  

But you are going to grow old.  You will want to do so in a country that isn’t a ruin.  Between now and then most of you will marry and have children.  You’re going to want your children to have a decent life, and certainly not to end up turning on a spit over low coals amidst the burnt-out ruins of our cities.  In short, you need to change for the best of reasons: self-interest.

I cannot change you.  And my tools for helping you to change yourself are limited, but here they are.  

STEP ONE: Realize Everything You Were Taught in School Is a Fraud.
 
And, if it wasn’t all fraudulent? No matter, “almost all” is enough that you ought to doubt everything. That doubt is good. Run with it.
 
STEP TWO: Start Reading History, Damn it.
 
And you can start with these:  
  1. The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
  2. The Great Terror and Harvest of Sorrow by Robert Conquest
  3. Intellectuals and Society and Black Rednecks and White Liberals by Thomas Sowell.
  4. Mexifornia by Victor Davis Hanson
  5. The Koran by Allah. Here, I advise you to read it twice, the first time to get used to the language and imagery, the second so you will understand that they really mean it.
  6. Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell. When you read it, remember that Orwell isn’t really talking about communism or socialism, but of a fascism that has taken control of the trappings. I assure you, antifa are absolutely fascists.
  7. Sorrows of Empire by Chalmers Johnson. I suggest this one for unusual reasons. It is almost certainly the worst book of nonfiction I have ever read in my life, averaging at least one lie or one emotionally charged irrelevancy for every page. Read it with care. Find the lies. Find the misleading irrelevancies. Learn to recognize them when you see them.
  8. Allan Nevins’s monumental eight volume series on the American Civil War and what caused it.
Those 17 are enough for starters, I think; Rome wasn’t burnt in a day.
 
And my final advice. Many of the things you will read will go against the narratives drummed into your head from kindergarten on. You will instinctively want to reject them. Don’t; put them aside and keep reading. Eventually you will come to something that you will recognize as true, but is also in opposition to your early propagandization. When that happens, be it sooner or later, it will be time to go back to those earlier instinctive objections and start some serious thinking about them. 

Good luck.  And you’re welcome.

Tom Kratman is a retired infantry lieutenant colonel, recovering attorney, and science fiction and military fiction writer. His next novel, A Pillar of Fire by Night, will probably be released next year.  A political refugee and defector from the People’s Republic of Massachusetts, he makes his home in Blacksburg, Virginia.  Tom’s books can be ordered through Amazon or baen.com.

8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Nohbody

    December 6, 2017 at 3:52 pm

    Regarding the recommendation for 1984, it should be noted that the book was a warning, not an instruction manual. I imagine the author is aware of this, but recent behavior (including but not limited to Hillary Clinton totally mischaracterizing the message of the book, saying that its message is that individuals should trust the government) suggests that such knowledge is sadly not universal.

    • MyddrinEmrys

      December 6, 2017 at 4:49 pm

      I’d also add Brave New World. While not as well written as 1984, it speaks to allowing that which brings us pleasure to destroy us. You see that with the utter dependence some people have on their smartphones for every little thing.

      Were an EMP to hit the US, the vast majority of Millenials would be unable to rebuild society after they recovered from going through their technology withdrawal symptoms.

    • Tom Kratman

      Tom Kratman

      December 9, 2017 at 3:41 pm

      It was a warning, but it’s not exactly the warning we usually think. Orwell was really warning against fascism, as he saw it, in the guise of socialism, rather than actual socialism. Now contemplate how ANTIFA is engaged in street theater to touch (mostly their own) emotions. Pure fascism.

  2. Pierre Savoie

    December 6, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    Millennials also have gotten less unsupervised play, less exploration of their neighborhoods, and have developed less ability to deal with other children WHEN PARENTS ARE NOT AROUND. They become “snowflakes” and beg the government to act as a parental proxy to monitor their behavior constantly, as they were never given free time to make their own decisions and develop their own judgment. That will contribute to the yearning for destructive socialism.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2011/10/all-work-and-no-play-why-your-kids-are-more-anxious-depressed/246422/

  3. Steve O

    December 7, 2017 at 7:54 am

    One important difference between millennials on the Left and Right is that there are no “safe-spaces” for anyone on the Right. They are pretty much hammered with the Leftist worldview in an unrelenting barrage from the media, teachers, other students, movies, popular bands, and so on. We all are.

    Millennials who come through that and have still developed a conservative worldview have done some critical thinking. Many on the Left, by contrast, can’t even articulate the mainstream conservative views on any topic.

    • Tom Kratman

      Tom Kratman

      December 9, 2017 at 3:40 pm

      We’ve always understood them better than they understand us.

    • Tom Kratman

      Tom Kratman

      December 9, 2017 at 3:41 pm

      That’s why I addressed only a couple of fringe groups on the right; they’re every bit at dumb as dirt, thoughtless, ands ignorant, as the lefties.

  4. Daniel Day

    December 11, 2017 at 11:34 pm

    Sir: The corners of the Pentagon are actually 108°. Each side subtends an angle of 72°, but I suppose the so-called “perfumed princes” usually meet *in* the building, not out near the center of the yard. Otherwise, well done. Thank you.

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