On the “Radical Self-Love” Movement: Beware of “positive attitude” advocates

By   /   July 9, 2015  /   26 Comments

TDB recommends Voyager - Unlimited internet @home as fast as you can get

Radical self-love gurus do not tend to promote or even really engage in discussions on privilege or the disadvantages people are born into; that shit would undermine the cause of “changing yourself, not the system.”

There is an endless supply of people who are ready and willing to inform us about what we are doing wrong, and how we can alter our behaviour so we can “get ahead” and inject magic and happiness into our lives. Between modern day “guru” Gala Darling who believes “positive thoughts generate positive realities,” and you can “manifest” your own destiny, to capitalist public thinkers such as Oprah Winfrey telling us positive thinking can help us obtain “the sweet life,” it is easy to get misled into a muddle of mistruths.

A recent blog by Gala is entitled “Happiness is simple: why too many choices make us miserable and 5 ways to improve your life!” Yeah? Nah. Too many choices are not the issue for a huge majority of the political underclass; a lack of choice is exactly the problem. Whether it be lack of choice when it comes to quality of education, or lack of access to higher education because you were not born into wealth and privilege, or lack of choice when it comes to nutritious food or warm dry housing because wages are often too low in this country, too often, too much choice is not an issue for the growing majority of the 99 percent; restricted choice is.

Gala and magazines such as Oprah Winfrey’s O Magazine, tell us:

If you just change your attitude and think more “positively” over time, your life will get easier. Over time, you will land a job that affords you a contract guaranteeing you some security and a pay-check which does not leave you in poverty. You simply have to manifest what you want. Drink a couple of litres of soda pop, add diamantes to your manicure, wear a fake moustache all day long (as Gala really has suggested as a remedy for the blues), put on a nice pink dress and smile a bit more then BOOM! That suicidal depression over the stresses of life such as being unable to buy food because you are on minimum wage, working depressing precarious jobs, and/or the debilitating anxiety over whether your welfare will be cut this week will suddenly melt away.

Middle or upper class young white women seem to be the demographic of the radical self-love movement. It is all well and good to tell them to “smash that class-ceiling” and just work hard to achieve your dreams and the “bling” and designer shoes will follow, but as Laurie Penny points out in her book Unspeakable Things, there are a lot of women drowning in the basement, in particular women of colour, trans, and queer women who disproportionality suffer from poverty, depression, feelings of alienation, and are discriminated against in the work-place:

1435441498934

It is hard to “think positive” when treated so negatively based on the colour of skin and/or sexuality, when facing hate crimes, targeted violence, and when there are so many structural hurdles put in your way to “success” and “triumph.” Radical self-love gurus do not tend to promote or even really engage in discussions on privilege or the disadvantages people are born into; that shit would undermine the cause of “changing yourself, not the system.”

In a powerful piece for The Guardian, “Oprah Winfrey: one of the world’s best neoliberal capitalist thinkers,” Nicole Ashoff writes,

Oprah is one of a new group of elite storytellers who present practical solutions to society’s problems that can be found within the logic of existing profit-driven structures of production and consumption. They promote market-based solutions to the problems of corporate power, technology, gender divides, environmental degradation, alienation and inequality.

[…] A stream of self-help gurus have spent time on Oprah’s stage over the past decade and a half, all with the same message. You have choices in life. External conditions don’t determine your life. You do. It’s all inside you, in your head, in your wishes and desires. Thoughts are destiny, so thinking positive thoughts will enable positive things to happen.

I used to watch Oprah when I was unemployed, with no money, and feeling utterly crap about my situation. I even started cycling religiously a few years back because Oprah told me exercise would help to reduce my feelings of worthlessness; my arse got smaller but my anxiety and panic attacks over my future, and how I was ever going to pay back my student loan, did not. I even read O Magazine for a while until I realised I was not an idiot and my situation was not my fault. I saw that there are external factors which can offer some pretty challenging barriers to success which no number of pictures of green meadows and calm beaches and deep breathing and kitchy “nick naks” can elevate.

What Nicole suggests in her piece is that Oprah just reinforces the focus on the “individual,” which hides the role of political, economic, and socio-economic structures in our lives,

O Magazine implicitly, and sometimes explicitly, identifies a range of problems in neoliberal capitalism and suggests ways for readers to adapt themselves to mitigate or overcome these problems.” She advises us to turn our gaze inward and reconfigure ourselves to become more adaptable to the vagaries and stresses of the neoliberal moment.

Changing your attitude is not going to change or help to dismantle structural injustice and a failed and unstainable economic model which serves only the elite rich of this world, and exploits the rest of us, particularly the working class and those living in poverty. As far as I am concerned positive thinking will fucking ruin your life.

“Just think positive” is a precursor to “it gets better,” and the hard reality is it is only going to get much, much worse for our most vulnerable. With social bonds being introduced into our public welfare state, financial incentives will now be provided to bully people who have mental health diagnoses, or disabilities, or who are likely unable to work in Aotearoa anyway. Life for those who need support from the state is only going to get more grinding and unmanageable.

My friend, who suffers from a generic connective tissue disorder, pointed out to me when I told him I was writing this blog,

“When it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter how positive I think, my joints are still going to dislocate and I’m still going to be in constant pain. Work will still be hard to find, my options will always be limited and I’ll never have the full capacity and range of freedom in this area as someone healthy.”

Multiple WINZ (Work and Income New Zealand) case-managers have told me to think “positively” over and over again, often in response to my having told them “The reason why I am struggling to find any work is because we have a flooded job market with countless over-qualified graduates.” Often the message to “just think positive” is not only divorced from reality, it is an unhelpful and patronising statement to say to someone who is struggling to secure work and to stay above the poverty line, especially if they have a disability or other barriers that may regularly prevent them from obtaining a job or better quality of life.

Ultimately, the “positive thinking” spiel is a form of coded victim blaming. This may sound like hyperbole but telling someone who is trying their best to get ahead in a world that is so unfair, unjust, and unequal, to simply change their attitude puts the blame squarely on that person.

“Positive thinking” and “affirmations” are now being used as a form of psychological coercion against beneficiaries. A first research paper by Hubbab titled, Unemployment being rebranded as psychological disorder expands on what exactly this coercion looks like.

The authors documented the physiological toll on beneficiaries in London who are subject to these practices, “from unsolicited emails extolling positive thinking to attitude changing exercises, with people looking for work frequently perceiving such interventions as relentless, humiliating, and meaningless.

Attitude changing exercises” and similar strategies that people like Oprah and radical self-love promoters such as Gala Darling use to “lift people up” are now being employed by state workers to harass and demean people who are struggling to find work.

Perhaps this is why I find it so hard to stomach people who tell me to think more “aspirationally” as some kind of solution to a stagnant job market, where any work I can get is underpaid and stressfully precarious. These “positive” attitude advocates remind me of WINZ case-workers who would phone, without warning, to grill me about what jobs I had applied for, and how many. One in particular spent a good twenty minutes telling me how I needed to “change my attitude” and that I should take any job, even cleaning toilets at minimum wage. I got off the phone crying, not because I think I am above cleaning toilets, but because I felt harassed and humiliated. It was a defeating experience.

I understand that people like Gala are trying to help; in fact I know Gala personally. She gave me a job many years ago at Lush Cosmetics. She was, and I am sure still is, a very caring and generally lovely and a kind hearted person. As Gala has said on her own blog site, radical self-love helped her overcome an eating disorder and depression, and she continues to help other women. Some of the help and advice Gala has on offer comes free of charge but she also charges a mint for her “Radical self-love Boot Camps” which cost a staggering $197. Unless you are a high income earner this amount of money is unaffordable.

Gala’s position that she just wants to help women transform their lives does not negate the fact what she and so many others are selling is a flawed ideology which preys on feelings of insecurity and isolation for a lot of women, and especially women who sit a little or a lot lower on the privilege ladder and do not benefit from being in a higher social class. Offering solutions to these feelings of disconnection and discontent, such as looking “inwards,” and changing how you behave, is absurdly reductionist, over-simplistic, and problematic. Gala believes “The more you think your life sucks, the more it sucks.” But as I have already pointed out, welfare reforms and callous policies penned by predominantly older white male politicians among other external factors that we virtually have no control over, all have a lot more to do with our lives sucking than our simply believing it sucks.

The disenfranchised, poor, and working class need to collectively band together to restructure the systems, and to expose the neoliberal policies and thinking which has helped create feelings of disconnection and discontent in the first place. Adherence and adaptation will further exasperate the situation, endorsing solutions built on neoliberalism to solve the very problems it has helped to create—which is exactly the thinking that people like Oprah and Gala promote—is truly next level insanity. It doesn’t even make sense!

My spiritual guru advice to you is:

Think revolutionarily. No amount of positive thinking can fill the bellies of the 280,000 children living in poverty in this country. I fully support declaring mutiny against governments who pass welfare reforms that push people further into crippling poverty, instead of waging mutiny against ourselves. Radical self-love and positive attitude advocates such as Oprah and Gala are more about adapting to a world “gone mad” and systems that do not serve you, than really improving your life.

It really is your choice: adapt, or disrupt?

Fight for a different paradigm! It might be a tad more productive than trying a green tea diet to purify your body, or rearranging your stationary draw so your pens are in harmony with your paper clips. Fighting for a new paradigm may bring you enemies and some deeply negative reactions but would you not rather seek out that brutal truth than live endlessly on in someone else’s brutal fairy tale? It is a fairy tale which tells you:

If you change your attitude and enough of yourself maybe someone might love you. If you work hard enough and want it badly enough maybe you will land some dream job which pays you enough to afford both rent and food and a bit of financial security. If you just play by the “rules” and adapt to a brutal capitalist system while changing what colour lipstick you wear and your “negative” thought patterns, your life will become easier and better.

If radical self-love and all that glitter and sequins and pink bows and “positive thinking” has worked for you and you have managed to manifest your dream life, then cool, I am stoked for you. But for many of us it is not the answer we are looking for: it part of the problem, not the solution.

This is a cross-post from Chloe King’s own blog Posse.  

***
Want to support this work? Donate today
***
Follow us on Twitter & Facebook
***

About the author

The Daily Blog contributor

WEBSITE: www.acitivatingtheglobalposse.com TWITTER: https://twitter.com/#!/GGrucilla

26 Comments

  1. countryboy says:

    “Those who fail to exhibit positive attitudes, no matter the external reality, are seen as maladjusted and in need of assistance. Their attitudes need correction. Once we adopt an upbeat vision of reality, positive things will happen. This belief encourages us to flee from reality when reality does not elicit positive feelings. These specialists in “happiness” have formulated something they call the “Law of Attraction.” It argues that we attract those things in life, whether it is money, relationships or employment, which we focus on. Suddenly, abused and battered wives or children, the unemployed, the depressed and mentally ill, the illiterate, the lonely, those grieving for lost loved ones, those crushed by poverty, the terminally ill, those fighting with addictions, those suffering from trauma, those trapped in menial and poorly paid jobs, those whose homes are in foreclosure or who are filing for bankruptcy because they cannot pay their medical bills, are to blame for their negativity. The ideology justifies the cruelty of unfettered capitalism, shifting the blame from the power elite to those they oppress. And many of us have internalised this pernicious message, which in times of difficulty leads to personal despair, passivity and disillusionment.”

    ― Chris Hedges

  2. TE says:

    What a brilliant piece of writing Chole I thank you.
    As a person of colour … did you like that *positive* spin on,
    I am Maori,

    I use it oftentimes to avoid the usual negative overview of my race
    as somehow sometimes I’m expected to be the chief spokes person to have a ready acceptable answer for the same old tired questions
    like “yea well what do you think of the …blah blah blah that YOU people do.”

    If I display a negative, ‘who gives a fuck attitude,’
    all hell is let loose on me, isolate, attack go for the jugular kind of shit. “Well maybe if YOU cared YOU people would be different”

    If I display a positive “well show me the stats and look at Maori that succeed te me te me” they don’t like that and start picking hole’s in ME forgetting about the race they were just debasing,
    most times with snarlying lips bared to show extreme racism.ffs

    Positive negative which or who can or should I be?

    Because being myself sometimes is a very hard thing to do.
    Arguing with people who *know* me better than I know myself is
    Like playing poker with penguins
    Just doesn’t work

    So I will be me thats a positive/negative Maori somewhat sometimes balanced person and I will just love myself, and just smile and say
    Yes today is a good day.

  3. Archonblatter says:

    The silliness is that “being positive” is used to cover older, varied approaches to human difficulties and impasses. There used to be words like optimism, hopefulness, faith, trust, or enthusiasm. We could be aspirational, ambitious, buoyant, overenthusiastic, ever cheerful, utopian, gushing, raving or whitewashing. Or perhaps conservative, pessamisic, sad, without hope, disappointed, diffident, having misgivings, anxieties, nervous apprehensions or the collywobbles.
    What are we when clutching at straws, counting chickens, engaging in wishful thinking, or are self deluded? Or if we are have a glimmer of hope, or are wearing rose coloured spectacles or living in a fool’s paradise?
    Our very cells are positively and negatively charged. Electromagnetic force, one of the four forces in our universe occurs because of positve and negative poles.
    No need to flounder about in all the pathos of New Age kool aid and candified crap.

    • Hugh Young says:

      “Our very cells are positively and negatively charged. Electromagnetic force, one of the four forces in our universe occurs because of positve and negative poles.”
      Fortunately, you seem to be using this as a metaphor, because in literal terms, except that the number of fundamental forces is indeed four, both sentences are confused and/or meaningless.

  4. PirateCaptain says:

    thank you for the read.
    It is frustrating being in need of help only to discover a web of confusion.

    My experience is with anxiety
    if you don’t LOOK like you need help it can be impossible to get it. Fit young male? too scared to leave his house and for no real reason? Not really the image most of us hold of “helplessness”. hard to convince people of physical and emotional abuse when genetics make you look like an athlete.

    I was trying my hardest to look ok in social settings, started to make progress among friends but it was bumpy. Experiencing success can make you look as though you don’t truly need help in the eyes of your support person(s), like your effort is the truth and your struggles the lie. Its now that a call for help comes as a surprise and is seen as unnecessary, “we fixed this already!” and they are left to wonder why, “is it for attention?”.

    they looked for motive behind my uncontrollable irrational fear. With their conclusions I don’t blame them for not wanting to be in contact with me, i only wish the process by which they came to their conclusions was based off communication and understanding.

    most people you ask would say they would help a friend or loved one with depression or isolation, but they have no obligation to see you as needing help, or responsibility for them personally to be the one to help, so they are free not to give it

    they are not bad people, they are stuck in that web of confusion too

  5. Jono says:

    Good post Chloe. I don’t know why but it seems most job adverts require this. The only reason I can think it is creating a fantasy world where people don’t see reality of situations around them. ie low wages, oppressive conditions, long hours etc etc.

    Chris Hedges quote above appears true.

  6. esoteric pineapples says:

    People who believe thinking, positive or negative, determines your spirit have things the wrong way round. The soul/psyche is infinitely deep and our thoughts are a surface level expression of this pyramid. I personally believe things deeper inside us determine what we think, what ideas come up in our heads etc. It’s good to try and look on the positive side of life but the philosophy of “positive thinking” is essentially quite a shallow analysis of the human experience. The notion that “I think so therefore I am” is essentially a very “materialist” point of view that is likely to be believed by extroverts (in the Jungian sense, those who believe what they see externally is reality) rather than introverts (those who identify more readily with their inner selves as being reality).

  7. K16 says:

    This is the ‘jist’ of the thinking positive situation. It is always good to think positively on any situation even if its is bad…

    Take into consideration this:

    Your mind is a radio. You decide what frequency your brain sits on.

    You can choose to either ‘be positive’ or ‘be negative’ these are the two frequencies you can choose from. If you choose positive, positive things will come into your radio… If you choose to be negative, negative things will come to your radio…

    As far as changing your life, it takes time and a lot of positive thinking and action. Positive thinking alone will not bring about change, change is brought about by you and what actions to take to achieve your dreams.

    I am a person who has used this ‘positive thinking’ to get myself out of the ghetto… It wasn’t really positive thinking alone, but mainly determination to change my life… To escape the poverty that I grew up in.

    Think however you want, but being negative about anything will make any situation worse regardless of what you believe…

    • K16 says:

      Don’t over-think things. Being a positive person isn’t hard to do… And it isn’t going to make you rich over night… But it is going to help you, people react better to people who are kinder more positive etc… Than people who make them feel negative aswell…

      Instead of focusing on how you can’t get a job (negative side)
      Focus on different ways of how you can go about getting that job (positive side)

      Can (positive)
      Can’t (negative)

      At the end of the day, thinking about anything gets you nowhere… The actions you take define the thoughts you produce.

  8. Mike in Auckland says:

    Once someone recommended to me to read a book called “Think and Grow Rich”, I knew that “positive thinking” is often an exploited concept, simply to excuse the better off doing well, and the not so successful to be blamed for their “failure” to think “positive”.

    The ideologues behind neoliberal politics, behind the laissez faire, Chicago Boys concepted approach, they know full well, it is all BS, but they get away with manipulating the desperate, downtrodden, the poor and ever so “hopeful”, to make them believe, it is all about “attitude”.

    Screw that kind of stuff, if you are denied basic food on your plate, or a decent, humble place to rent and live in, this has NOTHING to do with “positivity” or “self love” and bizarre psychological recipes, it is a material fact and injustice. Fact is, the preachers of “positive thinking” are often the ones confusing cause and effect, I have no trouble thinking “positive”, if my parents pave my way through life with nice advantages, I may struggle to do the same, being totally disadvantaged.

    • Shona says:

      Thanks Mike. Thanks Chloe. I thought I was the only one who saw all this positive thinking shite for what it is.
      My heart goes you to you Pirate Captain I have suffered from anxiety too, for over 20 years it plagued my life and now 2 of my offspring suffer as well. Positive thinking didn’t do a damn thing to help me on that .

  9. Jono says:

    Here’s a video that I thought was quite relevant called ‘Smile or Die’ it is one of the RSA animate videos. Hope you enjoy.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5um8QWWRvo

  10. sceptic says:

    While advice to think positive is simplistic, the alternatives suggested above are far worse – good luck with “changing the paradigm” but in the meantime you might just need to pay the rent and buy food.

    If the only choices really are to adapt or disrupt, in my experience adaptation is more successful economically than disruption. Darwin even wrote a book about it which is even more famous than “The Power of Positive Thinking”.

    Who are generally more successful or contented – adaptable people or disruptive people?

    • Jono says:

      If you read Chris Hedges quote from Country Boy above you will see your argument is flawed…

    • Archonblatter says:

      Emphatically, Darwin did not write a book about social Darwinism. He was talking about cellular adaptation to circumstance not behaviourism. Actually the disruptive personality from Socrates to Russell Brand is often hugely successful. Get real. What you are promoting is sleazy conformism, always a recipe for somnabulism and living death.

      • Sceptic says:

        Social Darwinism is a pernicious philosophy – the disadvantaged need to be helped, not ignored.

        Positive thinking is a simplistic platitude, but the alternative advice offered above is even less helpful. Social reform is an admirable goal, but telling the unemployed and/or depressed not to adapt but to disrupt the system and “change the paradigm” won’t do them an iota of good in the short term, and is politically motivated claptrap.

        Adaptability and versatility are very useful and practical skills in life – if you think this is the same as being sleazy, conformist and sleepwalking then you’re doing it wrong.

        • How does one adapt to ongoing pernicious poverty? High power prices and cold houses? Lack of adequate food? In effect, it’s telling the poor and powerless; “suck it up”. (Usually said by people with full bellies, warm houses, and a decent, regular income.

          When food banks were set up in the 1980s, early 1990s, this was the community engaging in “self help”. They were also meant to be a temporary measure.

          Instead, successive governments took full advantage of food banks as a “stop gap” measure that effectively let them off the hook. Instead of decent welfare benefits, WINZ (and it’s various incarnations) simply shunted beneficiaries off to foodbanks. It was hand-wiping as state policy.

          The increase in inequality, poverty, housing shortage, etc, all points to one inescapable reality; “self help” is useful only to a degree. After that, it becomes another means of beneficiary/poor-bashing.

          You had it right with the first sentence; “Social Darwinism is a pernicious philosophy – the disadvantaged need to be helped, not ignored.”

          • sceptic says:

            “How does one adapt to ongoing pernicious poverty? High power prices and cold houses? Lack of adequate food? ”

            The only advice offered here is that its all the government’s fault and there’s nothing any individual can do to better their personal circumstances except band together and change the government.

            There’s something profoundly depressing about that philosophy.

            • Just one quick example; the government’s raising of prescription charges from $3 to $5. If you on a low income or a beneficiary, paying high rent, power, food, etc, that extra $2 can mean the difference between picking up your meds or leaving them at the Pharmacy. I deal with low-income people on a daily basis, and I see them counting out their coins when trying to balance their expenditure.

              You and I might toss our coins into a jar and forget about it. For low-income people, a few left-over coins is their discretionary spending.

              Yep, that’s how far we’ve come as a country.

              So yes, in this case, it is the government’s fault because;

              (a) they cut taxes in 2009 and 2010 for higher income earners;

              (b) raised GST which affected low income earners disproportionately;

              (c) raised other user pays charges (eg, prescription charges)

              It is a transfer of wealth from low (and medium incomes), to higher incomes.

              That is a direct consequence of government policy.

              Banding together to change the government and implement different policies would be a good start. That is a form of self-help I can relate to, as it involves grass-roots participation in the democratic process.

              • sceptic says:

                “Grass roots participation to change the government” is just an alternate version of the “positive thinking” platitude.

  11. Archonblatter says:

    Would you rather be a pig happy or Socrates unhappy?

  12. anker says:

    What the evidence says about psychological interventions for people with depression, is that thinking positively doesn’t work, because positive thoughts aren’t credible to a depressed person (sometimes for good reason). I think what is most helpful in terms of thinking is thinking realistically (as opposed to negatively). So if two hundred people are going for the same job, realistically, I am not likely to get it. So then I can think about what the most adaptive thing is to do in a situation like this. In some cases the most adaptive thing to do is to protest, join a political party and get active.
    Positive thoughts on their own don’t make positive things happen. That is magical thinking. Taking some sort of action is what makes things happen. Evidence based therapies will take this approach. For example CBT where the situation the person is in is highly factored as a reason for their feelings such as depression.

  13. Archonblatter says:

    Found the quote on Socrates and the pig. It is by John Stuart Mill from his UTILITARIANISM of 1863.

    “Now it is an unquestionable fact that those who are equally
    acquainted with, and equally capable of appreciating and enjoying,
    both, do give a most marked preference to the manner of existence
    which employs their higher faculties. Few human creatures would
    consent to be changed into any of the lower animals, for a promise
    of the fullest allowance of a beast’s pleasures; no intelligent
    human being would consent to be a fool, no instructed person would
    be an ignoramus, no person of feeling and conscience would be
    selfish and base, even though they should be persuaded that the
    fool, the dunce, or the rascal is better satisfied with his lot than
    they are with theirs. They would not resign what they possess more
    than he for the most complete satisfaction of all the desires which
    they have in common with him. If they ever fancy they would, it is
    only in cases of unhappiness so extreme, that to escape from it they
    would exchange their lot for almost any other, however undesirable
    in their own eyes. A being of higher faculties requires more to make
    him happy, is capable probably of more acute suffering, and
    certainly accessible to it at more points, than one of an inferior
    type; but in spite of these liabilities, he can never really wish to
    sink into what he feels to be a lower grade of existence. We may
    give what explanation we please of this unwillingness; we may
    attribute it to pride, a name which is given indiscriminately to
    some of the most and to some of the least estimable feelings of
    which mankind are capable: we may refer it to the love of liberty
    and personal independence, an appeal to which was with the Stoics
    one of the most effective means for the inculcation of it; to the love
    of power, or to the love of excitement, both of which do really
    enter into and contribute to it: but its most appropriate
    appellation is a sense of dignity, which all human beings possess in
    one form or other, and in some, though by no means in exact,
    proportion to their higher faculties, and which is so essential a part
    of the happiness of those in whom it is strong, that nothing which
    conflicts with it could be, otherwise than momentarily, an object of
    desire to them.

    Whoever supposes that this preference takes place at a sacrifice
    of happiness- that the superior being, in anything like equal
    circumstances, is not happier than the inferior- confounds the two
    very different ideas, of happiness, and content. It is indisputable
    that the being whose capacities of enjoyment are low, has the
    greatest chance of having them fully satisfied; and a highly endowed
    being will always feel that any happiness which he can look for, as
    the world is constituted, is imperfect. But he can learn to bear its
    imperfections, if they are at all bearable; and they will not make him
    envy the being who is indeed unconscious of the imperfections, but
    only because he feels not at all the good which those imperfections
    qualify. *It is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig
    satisfied; better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied.*
    And if the fool, or the pig, are a different opinion, it is because
    they only know their own side of the question. The other party to
    the comparison knows both sides. ”

    All magical thinking starts with the assumption that wishing makes it so – that one’s state of mind, given sufficiently pure concentration, can effect changes (improvements) to physical reality.
    Nowadays, magical thinking has to assert itself over scientific knowledge, even teetering into sociological schizophrenia (the inability to distinguish fantasy from reality), because any advantages humans may have previously derived from optimistic delusions are now foundering on very serious, planet-threatening shoals. What has intensified is the degree of disconnect from sanity and the scope of consequences from continued insanity.

  14. Gosman says:

    My understanding is that you took an arts degree. Arts degrees are notoriously difficult to translate in to high paying jobs. this is a pehnomenon not just in New Zealand but around the world. One of the main areas of higher wage work for Arts graduates is the public sector. However the public sector tends to have lower wages than the public sector. If you do want to improve your own situation you may well need to take some of the advice of Oprah and company because otherwise options for you are far more limited than people with other qualifications.

    • Why do you right wingers always feel the need to be so judgmental, as if you alone are privy to how to live life successfully?? Tell me, Gosman, dos it give you a sense of superiority to tell another person how they should live their life and what mistakes they’ve made?

      I guess it makes up for whatever shortcomings you must have in your life. (Not that we’d know. Chloe has given us her full name and shared her life with us. You, on the other hand, hide behind a cloak of anonymity. No wonder you feel so brave proffering judgement and advice.)

      By the way, whatever degree or qualifications you took has done little for your writing skills.


 
Authorised by Martyn Bradbury, The Editor, TheDailyBlog,