I feel, therefore I am
Which of us has never made an impulsive decision and lived to regret it? When the mind clears, we look back and say to ourselves, “what was I thinking?” In actuality we weren’t . . . thinking. Another part of us took over. In the deep recesses of our neural system a chemical was released that made us feel good at the moment of decision. We reacted emotionally and found ourselves stuck with the consequences of a bad decision.
Whenever I go to the mall, I like to drop in the sporting goods store to have a look at the weaponry. Bright, shiny, new side arms glisten behind a glass case. Behind them the latest from Remington and Winchester are displayed side-by-side on a rack for long arms. The shotgun I bought three years ago is now available in camo. A black-powder muzzle-loader is on sale for $199. I am tempted to slap down the old credit card and walk off with a new firearm. “I need to get out of here before I get impulsive,” I say to the clerk, “bet you’ve never seen that happen in a gun store?” The comment never fails to evoke a chuckle from the crew behind the counter.
I try to be a thoughtful man. I don’t need another caliber. I have one gun for each of several purposes: large game, small game, birds, and home defense. A rational cash benefit analysis would prove that I’m already overbought; the game I have taken in the field has cost me more by far than the best cut of steak available at the grocery store. Of course, one must weigh in the pleasure of the hunt, but economically it makes no sense. I conclude, quite rationally, that I don’t need another gun.
Have you seen the latest .45 from Kimber? Ooh, what a sweet piece!
Now imagine if you will a person who always reacts on the basis of emotion. The chemical surge takes over in almost every situation and the person acts like an automaton. Later they will say, “Well, it felt right at the time.” I suppose it did. What a poor barometer are feelings. And these people never get it right because the rational faculties are always suspended at the moment of decision. They live their lives dealing with the consequences of one bad decision after another. Throw sex into the mix, the ultimate of all feel-goods, and you get a template for disaster. It’s a wonder that Homo Sapien ever made his way out of the trees. But then, the species, as the name implies, is supposed to be the thinking man. Well, maybe sometimes.
The liberal is an intensely emotional creature, and he will say so to your face: “I don’t feel that’s right.” It does no good to argue with a liberal because the rational faculties will not displace his feelings. What you get instead is an angry opponent. “You’re nothing but a racist, bigot, homophobe!” They lash out because you made them feel bad, the sum total of the reaction. I know these people well because I work in the public schools, a place stocked with liberals like no other.
The other day I had to substitute a class for a liberal colleague. She left behind a film called Poverty in America. I viewed it along with a class of mainly twelve year-olds. The film was completely anecdotal in nature and emotional in its appeal. There was nothing of substance to this film whatsoever. I asked the class to identify the causes of poverty. “Poverty is caused by illness and accident. Anyone can fall into poverty; it’s just a matter of bad luck.” The class had correctly interpreted the theme of the film be it ever so erroneous. I had to disabuse them of the conclusion based on facts. Poverty, you see, is correlated most directly to a lack of education, followed by out-of-wedlock births, and the tendency of the underclass to live in single parent households (where they continue to breed indiscriminately). I received a complaint from the regular teacher via the principal that I had denounced the film as silly and pointless. My conclusion must have made my colleague feel bad. Oh, well.
What would lead a teacher to show a film based completely on emotional appeal? In this case, my colleague is trying to “teach kids to be good citizens”. By this she means an ability to empathize with those less fortunate. She wants her students to be caring and compassionate. This teacher is doing these kids a great disservice because she is teaching them to emote rather than think. But that’s how my liberal colleague deals with life, and she thinks herself virtuous based on her tolerance and compassion. The belief that one is morally superior generates warm fuzzies when the proper chemicals are released. Mmmmm, am I not just the spitting image of the enlightened American? After all, I care.
The individual who answers life’s problems by emoting instead of thinking will lurch from one self-induced crisis to the next. But what happens when such a tendency reaches the level of national policy? In wartime? Can we trust liberals to make rational decisions that can mean life or death to millions? Do we want a statesman to deal with a sociopathic dictator based on his feeling that Kim Jong Il wouldn’t really use a nuke? Would you like a madam president who makes decisions based on the adulation of crowds because that’s how she generates her chemical fix? (Her husband suffers from the same pathology, a form of malignant narcissism.) Do you really want to hear from anyone who says they feel that violence is a last resort?
God save the republic!
You can’t make a liberal think. They are like drug addicts who need their emotional fix on a daily basis. You can make a liberal mad, but you can’t change his mind. His moral superiority is not arrogance; it simply makes him feel good. But then, neither should you trust a liberal. He lacks the ability to make decisions based on rational analysis. The liberal can’t make a logical decision because the right decision might make him feel bad. So he won’t. Count on the emotional response and you’ll be right nine times out of ten. Be prepared to count the dead when emotion becomes the basis for national policy.
My advice to conservative friends and colleagues is to go out and buy a Kimber chambered for .45 ACP. You may not need it, but I guarantee it will make you feel better. Mine does.