Post-truth – How America Lost Its Mind in the Madness of Emotions. Chuck Mason February 9, 2024

Post-truth – How America Lost Its Mind in the Madness of Emotions.

A madness of emotions drifts across America as post-truth captures the American mind.

A madness of emotions drifts across America. Men identify as women; women identify as cats. Joe Biden identifies as sentient; the border identifies as secure.  Marxists identify as democracy’s protectorate, and traditional Americans who dare question this nonfactual insanity are identified as Nazis. Facts no longer matter as feelings reign, and they don’t care about your reality.  Post-truth has come to America.

Post-truth, the Oxford Dictionary’s 2016 word of the year, best describes the West’s cultural ethos, mood, and preoccupations.  It was unexpected but accurate.  As the West replaced facts with feelings, Oxford recognized that the West had lost its mind.

Post-truth is the “circumstance in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”

Post-truth marks a new intellectual paradigm for America and the West.  Feelings and preferences became the arbitrators of our world, meaning reality no longer had to conform to objective facts parsed by rationalism.  When facts succumbed to the philosophical pressure of postmodernity, we lost the light of reason for humanity. Facts and rationalism led us out of the Dark Ages. Our future was uncertain without them, and the consequences were impossible to fathom.

Reality is tough to define but perilous to live without.  

Superstition, fantasy, and pagan expectation reigned supreme during the Dark Ages: evil spirits caused disease, werewolves were a thing, vampires drank blood, witches cast spells, mice generated spontaneously from grain, and monarchs laid claims to thrones by birth.  Rational thought dissolved all of them with a handful of facts and Aristotle’s rules of logic.

Facts, data, science, logic, and common sense accurately assess the real world. The Enlightenment’s focus on reason, science, and moral and political theory gave ordinary plebs the ability to steal reality from myth and reasonable belief from superstition.  They created a world of information and technology that liberated humanity from serfdom, slavery, disease, famine, ignorance, illiteracy, early death, child mortality, and barbarian pillage.  Rationalism created a civilization that had no equal. As Stephen Pinker documents throughout Enlightenment Now[i], humanity flourished in every conceivable measure.  Facts and reason revealed the true nature of reality and rescued humanity from the superstition and barbarism of the Dark Ages. Everything was bliss until postmodernity crashed the party.

Postmodernity dethroned rationalism when it successfully deconstructed our confidence that facts, data, logic, and common sense accurately describe the world.  Philosophers argued that rationalism could not intrinsically justify its claim that facts were derived from objective truth to ascend above all other estimations of life.  There was no objective truth; facts were theory-laden beliefs that made spurious claims to an objective realism that didn’t exist.  They were simply opinions in a world of moral relativism equivalent to feelings as arbitrators of reality. Rationalism became anathema in the minds of the Postmoderns as they deconstructed its foundations, which left them in a bind.  They needed another method of interpreting the world once they left rationalism behind.

Emotivism, the philosophical school that argued all value judgments express preference, attitude, or feeling, replaced rationalism as post-truth became the choice of a nation determined to bask in the glow of its emotions.

Feelings, preferences, and personal beliefs now define reality; the death of facts liberated them from the inconvenience of verification or falsification.  Ben Shapiro’s trope, “Facts don’t care about your feelings,” is accurate but nearly irrelevant when a near majority feel your facts are lies.  This is our reality as the Left and its sympathizers rejoice in the post-truth nightmare they’re creating.

Here’s a short list of their post-truth insanities that defy facts and common sense.

Transgender movement – This gem is the quintessential post-truth irrationalism.  It relies on post-truth social conditioning for its “relevance.”  Social conditioning sees all human behavior as social constructs learned through social experiences.  Gender becomes any concept society creates that’s affirmed by post-truth emotions.  Society constructs a concept of a female divorced from the facts of biology that a man adopts because he feels like he’s a woman.  Men invade women’s locker rooms and sports simply because of their preferences.

Post-truth social conditioning’s influence isn’t limited to gender; disability, race, and animal/human distinction are now on the table as the door to Pandora’s box is wide open.

Transableism – If you feel it’s real, then it’s real, right down to the disability you’d rather have in the able body that’s currently yours.  The medical community performs operations disabling healthy bodies because the people inhabiting them feel disability is their preferred state.  Physicians remove perfectly functioning limbs at the behest of their owners because feelings don’t care about facts that determine disability in a world that prizes health.

Transracialism – If gender isn’t determined by biology, then neither is race.  A white male can identify as black if his emotional resonance confirms his racial identity.  He can take it one step further by identifying as a disabled black woman to receive affirmative action preferences anywhere in society.  The black community is none too happy about this.

The furies (“otherkin.”)  – Yes, they’re real, although the litter boxes are largely a myth.  If everything is a construct and feelings arbitrate, identifying as an animal is a legitimate expression of reality. This has gone so far as people identifying as worms, fairies, gnomes, and ferns.  Illusions normalize when facts leave the building.

These are some of the more garish examples.  Others are still obvious but only slightly less offensive.

Post-truth narratives reframe the obvious as President Biden’s eroding cognitive decline is portrayed as idiosyncratic competence, COVID policies that claimed to follow science ignored the actual data, and conservative governors are slandered as xenophobic racists because they transport illegal migrants to self-proclaimed sanctuary cities.  These tropes fail facts tests to thrive under the post-truth pretense that we can conform reality to meet our preferences and desires.

There is a term for such mental histrionics.  In a saner world, we call it delusion – a false belief that is fixed and unable to change when faced with conflicting evidence.  We’ve always used facts to keep delusion out of the public sphere.  The death of facts robs us of the contradictory evidence we need to challenge a world intent on making their insanity our reality.  When physicians willfully create disabilities in people who had none by catering to their emotions, post-truth has crossed the Rubicon.

You wondered how the world went mad.  Oxford diagnosed the condition in 2016; post-truth followed by insanity.  If you think it can’t get any worse, post-truth smiles and says the best is yet to come.

Hang on because it only gets crazier from here.

If you’re looking for help fighting the culture war, you can find more resources here on our Battleground: Ideas website. Start with How Do I Respond To The Transgender Ideology? and What is a Woman? – Matt Walsh Here’s Your Answer. For a more in-depth look, get a copy of my book How Do I Talk to My Kids About Social Justice? and How Do I Respond to the Culture War? These will take you from a basic understanding of LGBTQ to drafting public policy statements you can use on your local school board. Let us know what you need and what you think. We are here to help.

Peace be unto you…CM.

[i] Stephen Pinker, Enlightenment Now (New York: Penguin Press, 2018) pp. 53-321.

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