Listening to words and self-deception

A lot of what many conservatives say can seem like random ideas or speculations, not necessarily coherent, until you unpack them.Consider the poster below I made from the leader of the Australian opposition party’s words.

Click to engorge

Try to ignore the images, in the first instance, which I supplied to show the ramifications of this conservative’s agenda.On the surface of it, the speaker is simply calling for honesty and for balance in our thinking. We could read his words as saying, “Let’s not get all overwrought just because a boss, or other male representative does something wrong, sinning a bit. Instead, let’s open our hearts and realize that he does more good than harm.”

In fact, this seeming call for leniency and kindness hides a fundamental patriarchal ideological structure which is directly patterned by those right-wingers in the US who argue that it’s not so bad to be raped because at least that brings a child into the world.

So, Tony Abbott,  our opposition leader, is implicitly arguing that male energy, no matter how forcefully or wrongfully applied, is always for the good.  His words appeal to a traditional, metaphysical view that female energy is only ever passive and reactive, so it requires male energy to give it meaning, force and shape. That is why having a rapist’s child might be a good thing in the dark minds of sordid fellows — because a rapist is the embodiment of male energy and women allegedly need male energy if they are to become something other than dark matter.

Similarly, even a vicious boss or wife-battering husband could be considered to be doing women some good, by exposing women to the necessary male energy that she needs to come into being in a meaningful way. This is actually the conservative ideology that underlies a text that could otherwise seem benign or genteel to some ears.

2. “Metaphysical” means imaginary. 
It means it has no relationship to reality. Nonetheless, many people live their lives as if metaphysical notions about the world were true. If enough people do that, it can change the real texture and experience of reality for a lot of people. To take one example, if women believe they are inherently passive they will wait for men to act, and not enjoying life on their own terms. That is why metaphysical precepts are so insidious.


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