“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

“He Was a Lone Wolf” and Other Ideological Memes

“So pure”

The fascist killer in Norway has already been described as a “lone wolf” and as a “madman.” This follows the regular borrowed-kettle script that the media like to rehearse when a fascist kills someone:

1) “He was insane”
2) “He acted alone”
3) “He wasn't a Nazi”
4) “His enemies were Nazis”
5) “His victims were asking for it”

Now you don't have to run through every item on the script here, but they are all forms of exoneration.

How many of these lone wolves does it take to convince regular people that fascism is at present carried out by a massively distributed PACK?

Aside from playing into the individualism meme—it's better to be a lone wolf than to be part of a collective—the image is bad for wolves, who are very compassionate to other wolves.

Of course the image is supposed to naturalize the killer. And by extension it makes us be chickens or some other feminized farm animal.

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