Cowardice is the luxury of they superlatively safe & secure, and similarily a principled life is the exclusive appanage of they wealthy enough to afford it.
Incorruptibility isn't some kind of virtue in se, but merely a proxy for virtue, in some contexts -- namely, those contexts where it is a distinguishing characteristic.
The "incorruptible cop" of proto-socialist fiction (irrespective on which side of the divide) is only remarkable at all because he's the only one (and a fundamentally comedic character specifically because cops are poor, and therefore the pretense to incorruptibility as inappropriate on them as tits on a boar). Were the entire department equally principled, this wouldn't make the world somehow better. (On the contrary, it does, as a factual matter, make it worse. Much, much worse.)
The fundamental problem with the pretense to principles, the tragic flaw in the childish "incorruptibility" of every two bit nobody is that, in failing to reflect genuine inequality, in being sourced other than from the Zipf curve, in being a proxy for indistinct equality rather than distinguished inequality it therefore fails to be virtuousi, and instead embodies viceii.
Ultimately, the world can't be improved by faking improvement. A whole bunch of plebs going about acting as if they were counts and grafs and freiherren aren't, thereby, anything. Not counts nor grafs nor anything else ; and it doesn't matter how they go about faking it. Copying the tricorns isn't going to do it ; copying the language isn't going to do it ; copying the "moral values" or whatever else, no matter how "even more abstract" isn't going to do itiii. The problem with the copyist's worldview isn't that he is copying the wrong things. The problem with the copyist's worldview is that he's copying at all. He, that's the problem, his unwelcome, inappropriately continued existence. Nothing else.
In other words, the insurmountable problems are structural, and insurmountable. It is very much this moral myopia (alternatively expressible as "the common man doesn't have a soul" quite adequately) that makes money a socially preferable (in the sense of, producing better outcomes over a society-wide summation) to say nothing of practically superior (in the sense of, actually delivering results in specified contexts) instrument of organizing pleb life. Both society as well as people individually are infinitely better served by the model wherein Eminescu's whoreiv is monetarily constrained rather than by the US model of "independent careerwoman hear her roar" because in the former the bioblob gives out of itself as
much little sense and meaning as there could have possibly been in there (and often enough even more than that) whereas in the later the self-same, forever identically self-same bioblob sucks in all sense, and meaning, its idle pretense become such a drain on the world around as to suck it dry.
It is at best short sighted (and in any case idiotic) to permit the pretense to human existence for any and all comers ; but, blessfully, inasmuch as the situation only arises in very imbalanced economic conditionsv it is also self-righting.vi———
- The definition of virtue is "what the rich, powerful, superlative &c do". That's the fucking point, there's no virtue outside of the elite because, simply put, there can't be. [↩]
- The definition of vice is "whatever the mass does". It doesn't matter what it is ; as long as "everyone agrees", it's vicious. [↩]
- If the emarpsamen scene doesn't make this point for you, it's not a case of moral myopia any longer. It's straight blindness.
What, pray tell, do the distant beauty of a free people's language have to say to the proles of Rimini lungomare ? Or any others ? [↩]
E atâta martiriu în căderea fiecărei femei sărace, atâta martiriu în furtul celor ce-l comit de nevoie și atâta orbire-sacrilegiu în cei ce-i condamnă.
Când am citit istoria acelei sărmane fete care ședea într-o mansardă, lucra ziua și noaptea spre a se hrăni cu pâne goală, ca dejunul ei, cum zicea ea, care-n frig, la lumina de petroleu, își rănea degetele lucrând, care era silită ca din 45 de franci să mai îmble și curat îmbrăcată, atunci întreb cine dă dreptul în lume burghezului a-i cumpăra lucrul, ca s-o silească pe această fată să moară de frig și foame pentru ca el să se-mbogățească?
Sărmană față palidă de Madonă! Câte lacrimi te-or fi brăzdat până ce te-a cuprins sicriul, până ce ai murit și te-ai înturnat în pacea neființei din care ieșiseși. Și cine-ți va plăti ție, martiră a capitalului, degetele tale rănite, plămânii tăi asfixiați, foamea, frigul, mizeria, cine a ști în lume că tu ai suferit, că ai existat măcar? Naștere și moarte au trecut fără de urmă, puteai trăi bine și rău: tot atâta amintire, adică niciuna. Ai fost virtuoasă, ce ți-a ajutat, de-ai fi fost coruptă, cine-ar fi avut dreptul să te condamne, cei ce te-au făcut ca să mori de foame și frig?
The genius never read Justine, what can I do. [↩]
- If there weren't enough plasticrap flowing out of a magic hole in China to "convincingly" (to pleb standards) back up the pretense of subsidising "the population" (aka, "viermii neadormiti") to the tune of "ten thousand dollars" a year, there'd be no universal pretense to franchise &c. either. The fake abundance of people in name only is entirely the fermentation byproduct of the fake abundance of goods in name only. [↩]
- To answer an ancient inquiry, perhaps best summarized by Ballas though I don't rightly remember where right now, the right thing to do as a responsible parent of your baby daughter is to sell her off to the "sex traffickers" (that aren't), rather than ship her off to the "university" (that isn't).
Oh, yes, I remember now. Here.
In this case, you are seeing a shift of power be repackaged as a gender battle. And it's quite apparent that power is a generation or so ahead of you, so in 1990 a 40 year old who grew up around successful lawyers then says to his 5 year old, "daughter, you should become a lawyer!" and she probably at one point collaborates to decry the lack of female role models, and then by the time she graduates law school she discovers she's a dime a dozen, power has been withdrawn, one step ahead; and at this rate I fully expect 2013's Aspirational 14% to nudge their 5 year old daughters towards investment banking so they can be part of the big Women In Investment Banking conference of 2033. Don't bother, it'll be in Newark.
From the other side : my junior slavegirl recounts this anecdote whereby some (not-cool) dude she was fucking at some (early) point in college "left her the room", in the sense of offering up the valuable consideration of the indifferent hotel room he had paid for, which she doesn't have to immediately vacate and so... Her (unspoken!) retort being something along the lines of "what the fuck, I spent my 16th year in a hundred different hotel rooms, how could this possibly be something anymore" ?! Because, you see... she's not retarded, what. [↩]