On Ideology as a Reverse Euphemism and The Myth of Twitter’s Left Leaning Bias
I’ve been trying to understand the spectrum of politics for quite some time especially because it is relevant to my (specific) studies on economics. However, definitions are a weak-point for me. I’m not strong with language and in particular I have problems sorting out a lot of social and political type spectrums that many people seem to easily understand.
I am getting better but admittedly I’ve learned enough to know I’ve said, wrote, and held beliefs that I don’t (anymore) think are “correct” or accurate and I definitely don’t fully understand the definitions of political type words such as conservative versus liberal etc.
At the same time I have noticed a phenomenon that I don’t necessarily think is growing at a significant pace but I think it is coming to a forefront and a head. It is a phenomenon I have written about in regard to a peer’s position on the yellow vest movement and how I got him to admit it is a largely composed of leftist Marxist socialists even though he wouldn’t admit that they are fighting for polices that lean these directions. He claimed they were just deceiving themselves and working for the intentions of the right.
I would argue a faction (and fraction) of the world’s population shares this kind of incoherent perspective in which they don’t know that by the common definition of these words they are in fact the “thing” they are calling the “other side”.
The argument seems to be “I heard Marxism is bad, that person does things I think are bad, that person is Marxist.”
Such reasoning would allow polar opposite ends of a political spectrum to think they are aligned based on hating “Marxists” only to find out later that they are in such disagreement about living that they actually enter rising conflict the more they talk in protests (and pro the very policies that they are proclaiming they are fighting against).
Here definitions become important, not that a word has a specific definition, but that both “sides” come to a reasonable agreement that there is a shared definition for key words being used. Of course there isn’t really a falsifiable test that proves when two people are sharing a definition but I think all too often its observable that at least one party has no intent on sharing definitions.
(Debating publicly can sometimes help this if the public demands a shared definition to hold the participants to).
Re-visiting the Reverse Euphemism
I have written in the past about a concept I call a Reverse Euphemism (perhaps there is an actual word for this) which is created when a person loads a word up in their argument to have a definition which hides the part of their argument in which the reasoning is problematic.
I feel that I have shown in past writing about a peer, and in regard to some of Jordan Peterson’s work, that they have used reverse euphemisms to cover up that their arguments have non sequitur components to them.
The Alleged “Right’s” Problem With The Alleged “Left Leaning” Twitter Policies
Here we can watch a perfect representative of a faction that accuses Twitter of being anti-free speech and left leaning, Tim Pool, basically head to head with the representative of Twitter’s policy team:
Over and over Tim brings up examples of what he feels are pro-left policies and Vijaya’s continued response is to awkwardly point out (without seeming like she’s talking down to him) that their policies are to not meant to police content but (targeted) harassment.
Tim disagrees time and again and wants an explanation and she can’t give one because Twitter’s policy is to police harassment and targeting not content.
Here slides the goal post in my opinion.
Tim says he understands she believes that but he continues to give examples that show, by HIS understanding, that Twitter’s policies are unfavorably directed at right leaning content and accounts.
There is a part at 7:15 where Joe Rogan says:
“If you say that you believe someone is biologically male even though they identify as female that’s a perspective that should be valid. First of all its biologically correct. So we have a problem in that if your standards and your policies are not biologically accurate then you are dealing with an ideological policy.”
First of all I want to note two things in Joe’s defense. First I don’t think he meant “standards and policies” so much as “beliefs and standard definitions”. I think the former might be taken as a offensive by some and I don’t think he meant it by such an offensive set of implied definitions.
Secondly he goes on to very clearly and seemingly honestly state that he has no problem calling a biological male a female if that’s what she identifies as (and no doubt if the genders were reversed).
A Side Note On Religion and Science
Today I had some Twitter dialogue that started in a thread with someone saying that they were quite upset that they were about to get in trouble from the police for misgendering someone:
If you look around the internet however you can see the popular definition of these words that shows that biology speaks to the sex but not a gender of someone. At best we see that some people want XX to mean female by the semantic argument’s sake. But of course this just means having definitions that aren’t shared. Biology isn’t proving or saying anything to this regard.
Intersex people are individuals born with any of several variations in sex characteristics including chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, or genitals that, according to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, “do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies”. Such variations may involve genital ambiguity, and combinations of chromosomal genotype and sexual phenotype other than XY-male and XX-female.
This is part of that faction that is coming to surface in which I don’t necessarily think all of the people being highlighted share views that wouldn’t cause conflict among them in a protest (where they would eventually share their beliefs with each other while marching “irl” perhaps out of boredom).
This topic is one that @benshapiro speaks of and as I understand he shares Joe Rogan’s views (including that out of a form of politeness he would generally intend to call a person by their preferred pronoun but simply that a biological male cannot be a biological female.
What I realized when I thought of Shapiro and his other posts (and retweets) of obsessively calling @IlhanMN anti-semetic and participating in with a network of others constantly and obsessively doing the same on a daily basis I was reminded that Ben is probably at the heart quite religious as he is openly of Jewish background/culture (perhaps I am wrong to assume this).
And so I thought of it as interestingly coincidental that he would be citing science for what is really a belief in the construct of or framework set by the story of “Adam and Eve”.
So it occurs to me that many people that are seemingly citing science as a basis for their arguments really have what Joe Rogan would call an ideological basis for the reason that they are making their argument.
What is also of note is that Ben Shapiro is brought up in the Rogan video as a an example of a person that would suffer from Twitter’s bias. But you can see Shapiro’s daily targeted harassing at Omar which is also coordinated with other significant accounts that themselves have millions of followers.
I think given this observation Tim Pool would be forced to agree Shapiro is a counter example of Twitter’s political bias.
Ideology as a Reverse Euphemism
I caution to the reader. Words don’t have definitions but they can have shared meaning. Here are some possible meanings for these words that could be implied or shared:
An ideology is a collection of normative beliefs and values that an individual or group holds for other than purely epistemic reasons. The term is especially used to describe a system of ideas and ideals which forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy. In political science it is used in a descriptive sense to refer to political belief systems. In social sciencethere are many political ideologies.~https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ideology
relating to knowledge or to the degree of its validation.
Normative generally means relating to an evaluative standard. Normativity is the phenomenon in human societies of designating some actions or outcomes as good or desirable or permissible and others as bad or undesirable or impermissible. A norm in this normative sense means a standard for evaluating or making judgments about behavior or outcomes. Normative is sometimes also used, somewhat confusingly, to mean relating to a descriptive standard: doing what is normally done or what most others are expected to do in practice. In this sense a norm is not evaluative, a basis for judging behavior or outcomes; it is simply a fact or observation about behavior or outcomes, without judgment. Many researchers in this[clarification needed] field try to restrict the use of the term normative to the evaluative sense and refer to the description of behavior and outcomes as positive, descriptive, predictive, or empirical.!https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normative
But ‘ideology’ has a strange background if we go further into the wiki history for it. We have a Marxian flavor:
In the sense defined by French Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser, ideology is “the imagined existence (or idea) of things as it relates to the real conditions of existence”.
And here we can look into Jordan Peterson’s intended and implied definition of ideology:
Peterson has been teaching people to be anti-Marxist (as I understand and anti-leftist) and that Marxism is a negative thing such that the word then becomes a pejorative. He might answer “It is! When you understand what it means!”
But here he has created a reverse euphemism with the word ‘ideology’ I think where his argument stems from the negative views he has on Marxism. He implies the Marxist evocation of the word, through their defining of it, and then implies that it runs counter to science and is therefore bad.
Ideology is counter to science and therefore bad. But that is by the Peterson framework and definition. Not necessarily by everyone’s common understanding and/or use of the word:
The term was coined by Antoine Destutt de Tracy, a French Enlightenment aristocrat and philosopher, who conceived it in 1796 as the “science of ideas” during the French Reign of Terror by trying to develop a rational system of ideas to oppose the irrational impulses of the mob. However, in contemporary philosophy it is narrower in scope than that original concept, or the ideas expressed in broad concepts such as worldview, The Imaginary and in ontology.
Here we note one stated archaic definition along with a modern definition:
a system of ideas and ideals, especially one which forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy.
“the ideology of republicanism”
synonyms:beliefs, ideas, ideals, principles, doctrine, creed, credo, teaching, dogma, theory, thesis, tenets, canon(s); More
the science of ideas; the study of their origin and nature.
In some sense the modern use that Joe Rogan uses (that was no doubt partially formed from his talk with Peterson) is seemingly at odds with a previous definition.
Conflict and Core Beliefs
I think what we are really witnessing is a type of person that feels a need to test their beliefs in a way or to use their reasoning to dispel ignorance and when they breach a policy it feels to them as though their core beliefs are being attacked (or suppressed). Here I say attacked because there is a sort of feeling of fight or flight (where the tendency is to fight because there is nothing to gain otherwise and nothing to lose).
I think this is why the lady in the OP of the Twitter thread was so distraught she couldn’t sleep. Did she make a innocent and simple error and she was worried that the police will arrest her anyways? I don’t think that is the worry. I think the worry is that she feels her use of the pronouns were correct and justified and now her rights are being trampled on.
I think her story gets lumped into the belief that twitter favors the left but only because she is citing science that she doesn’t understand or believe in.
On Natural Rights
My definition of natural rights is loosely our ability to endeavor to do whatever we want provided we don’t encroach on another’s endeavor.
I think what is happening is many people endeavor to express their beliefs out to world and no one in particular and many other people believe it is their right to profess logic in the face of “ideology”.
And that the latter is to be covered under free speech.
Twitter’s policy doesn’t enforce this right. Twitter’s policy allows you to proclaim anything you want publicly. But the aim of it is also that you cannot continually send your beliefs “@” someone.
You cannot shit on the expression of there dreams and beliefs. You can disagree with them through your own unaimed expression. But you have no upheld right to “@” them (constantly or en coordinated masse etc). That is not a right that twitter upholds.
You can have your pursuit but you have no right to encroach.
So if your intention is debate “@” people that have contrasting views and the conclusion is that you upset persons gravely you will be policed regardless of the political slant of your views.
And I think many people that claim to be anti-left have this personality.