The working philosopher and the what-if philosopher

Wednesday, 27 February, Year 11 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

The working philosopher is a man, in the classical understanding of the term, who manages, day by day and year by year, the two universes dependent upon him and borne of his presence : the harem, and the workshop. The private, and the public, aspects of man's life on this here earth. The first's fulla sluts, the second's fulla grunts -- what precisely "full" means and just how slutty or tame the sluts are, just how capable or useless the grunts are we'll leave to the side. What matters is that the man provides meaning for both these groups ; not merely in the shape of the substance in "Our Lord, our daily bread", but essentially in form.i

What he does is something all-important : in the daily flow of problems, he recognizes the issues encountered for what they truly are, and perpetually makes sure the solutions deployed are derived from the global maximum, and not some local maximumii. He spots the measles and doesn't call them merely "some pox", he spots the chancres and doesn't call them "warts", and this not on the body of his women but on the whole, complexiii and extensive corpus of reality!

Obviously this process will leave him in posession of some notation, scribbles indistinct and incomprehensible, that nevertheless permit him to answer unexpected questions of unbounded domain in a timely manner. This is the philosophy of the working philosopher, a tree that reaches all the way to the core of all things but which nevertheless is kept pruned by mighty strong winds and pressures. The ticking clock, which forces the scribbles into their peculiar shape, the demands of workshop and harem (and therefore, the limits they impose) magically permit reliable structure and also comprehensibility -- because these problems are universal then therefore the working philosopher can spark the gap of being, and understand others -- not merely other men, but also other men's grunts and sluts, rendered to him comprehensible by their fundamental commitments.

The "mandate of heaven", so to speak, is this peculiar relationship with meaning, where one can make the sovereign promise : that whatever any other comes up with, it'll have been included already.

The what-if philosopher is an idle fellow, rather in the vein of the "idea man" ironized in Bitcoin for years (not that it started there), fretting importantly about "what if the pie in the sky had hostile intentions". Whether he's a shy (and fundamentally boring) child, born of the femstate and surviving off its many teats as a friar 2.0iv, or whether he's a deranged (and fundamentally sad) adolescent, "seeking" in poverty and howling confusion as a mendicant monk 2.0v... I suppose the only proper way to describe him would be "a grunt, working in someone's workshop", which readily brings the problem into view : there can not be such a thing as "a grunt's philosophy".

Yes, a man could perhaps pick up what the grunts grunted out, and from those disparate and by themselves deeply useless and entirely meaningless parts fashion himself a philosophy. But only a man could! "A man, Jerry! People with jobs! And secretaries!"

So no, there's entirely no reason to fret about things like say the French "public intellectual", the Derridas and Baudrillards of this world. There's no such thing, and pretense to the contrary howsoever buttressed doesn't resolve the problem. We were discussing "cool" in the harem the other day, and they pressed me to come up with someone I think was cool. I had never considered the matter, or in any case not in a while long enough to have meanwhile forgotten what results if any the consideration might've produced, but as I was dithering through the ample space trying to organize myself I idly mentioned -- to their shock -- that it couldn't be a musician.

It can't be one, rockstars aren't cool enough to be cool. You see ? "Fans" isn't on the "sluts", "grunts" list, and the fundamental problem with Cocksucker Blues as with the other, many, countless attempts at faking being me without actually being me is always the exact same : they didn't own those whores, did they ?

Howsoever reproduced, as an "elected representative" or "public intellectual" or whatever else -- the rockstar fundamentally isn't cool enough. He's not important anyway, what's important is philosophy : the problems rockstars encounter in their quest to meaning, doomed to failure from the onset as it is, are indicative of a problem with the rockstars in question! Their model's broken, they're defective series products. If some dork keeps trying to skate and keeps falling on his dumb head, or consistently breaks one of his four noodly appendages, the conclusion isn't, nor ever could possibly be, that "there's something wrong with skating". Skating's fine, it enacts a partition in the world : between they who can, and they who can not.

A stone stands, context irrespective -- whether you think "it stands in the forest" or "it stands in the parking lot behind Olive Garden" is entirely irrelevant. Some touch it and it hums, some touch it and nothing happens. Just because every time a schmuck in "office appropriate attire" touches it nothing happens doesn't say something about the stone!

  1. Now tell me which of these two's the ousia.

    No, but seriously, consider : the substance's subordinate. The form's dominant, and more important. A crust of bread will be found for all whores as for all knaves. That much's a given, and therefore unimportant. What matters is the how, specifically how was the crust found, and what that finding means, and what that finding stands for. The forms of the finding stand above the substance of the finding, because the substance's given implicitly -- what lives will have sustenance, and daily, and of its exact kind -- whereas the form's left libre to signify.

    Thus what's essential is the form, not the substance. Now tell me how you translate ousia. []

  2. It's not really this simple -- if it were, everyone'd be doing it. In a quest for expressive precision, doomed to failure from the onset as we find ourselves, we could nevertheless attempt "maintains the communication with the global maximum open", as a second approximation.

    You know, like if you were playing Bridge, the card game. Gotta keep communication and control, right ? []

  3. Understand : no one's safeguard from the whore's conundrum ; nor I. The day he said that and I failed to say my piece in response is the day I fail ; and contrary to what "everyone" thinks, everyone's life is composed entirely (and to the shining exclusion of all else) out of exactly such failure. The objection to one, pick one, any one -- RMS, say, or the golden bolix boys or whatever you might pick -- is precisely that they failed this one, first, foremost and only job, duty and constitutive substance of the existence of man on Earth. []
  4. These prefer being called "academics", notwithstanding that is the one thing they are not. []
  5. These prefer being called many things I've not the patience to delineate. []
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2 Responses

  1. IIRC Aristotle covered this one in detail, in "Politics".

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Wednesday, 27 February 2019

    Quite so, we have a return of the blathering magicians.

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