Disproportionate Response, Right-Wingness And Intuitive Martial Arts

Some headline, eh? The reason I wrote “several headlines” instead of one is, obviously, because I want to equate the three and explain why they are interchangeable.

Lately, due to personal events in my life, I found out that as an individual, I can’t help but internally react in “biblical moral terms”, namely: when someone infringes on my trust, rights, reputation, honor, etc. – I intuitively wish to avenge sevenfold.

Obviously, since I wasn’t entirely raised in the jungle, this is rarely what I do, but the sting is there, the desire to exact painful and regrettable revenge exists, and this is probably true for a lot of people who never consummate this desire.

Why Right-Wingness? Well, I’ll add several knots into one by saying that right-wingness as a political view is the sum total of rationalizations for what is indubitably an irrational worldview: that power ultimately is the sole means in which welfare, success and pretty much anything else can be obtained.

This is a sad state of affairs not because “power doesn’t achieve anything” (something I’m sure only the staunchest pacifist would claim) – but because power alone never does.

And just to clear up my intentions: when I’m hurt, I get irrational because I’m mad, afraid and injured – and as a result, I tend to inflict knee-jerk reactions that in retrospect seem barbaric and stupid.

When someone inflicts me with pain, he does that for a reason, and his behavior can be explained. But my ape-brain can’t compute all this when it happens, so instead of trying to figure out an elaborate way of healing my wounds, I just feel like raking the person’s skull. This is how I equate right-wingness and “intuitive martial arts” – I, like most right-wingers, am under the illusion that disproportionate response will bring results in the long run, and even while I know this, I can’t help but feeling otherwise.

There is one thing that is true, or at least, true in the short run: if you inflict disproportionate response, you inflict something akin to “teaching” or “taming”. It never succeeds in the long run, but the fact that it succeeds at all gives the illusion that it can be employed indefinitely.

The real solution is merely displaying no intention of approval for any crimes committed (and this can be relevant to international disputes as well as to personal conflicts, and that does include the use of force) – while making a firm agenda of non-violence. Violence is a force too reckless and sporadic to be employed continuously, and this very fact is something I’ve learnt in a lifetime of being surrounded by it –

Which is why I’m leaning much more to the left side of the political spectrum,

and why I will never trust violence as a long-term solution to anything.

*I wish to emphasize that by “right-wingness” (which is probably a very broad term) I mean the variety of malign idiots who subscribe to the definition I’ve described in this post – obviously, a lot of different instances of “right-winger” or “left-winger” exist in the spectrum separating the “right-winger” I’m describing in this post (and people like that do exist, in their millions), and those people who are committed pacifists.


10 Responses to “Disproportionate Response, Right-Wingness And Intuitive Martial Arts”

  1. Nessa Says:

    when I’m hurt, I get irrational because I’m mad, afraid and injured – and as a result, I tend to inflict knee-jerk reactions that in retrospect seem barbaric and stupid.

    Liked that part a lot, probably because it relates to me.

  2. Uzza Says:

    Been waiting for a post like this. Here is how I would put it:
    We are biologically programmed for Fight or Flight: when our low brain perceives a threat it instinctively prepares our bodies for fighting, the desire for revenge is instinctive, and dominating an opponent produces chemicals in our brains that make us feel good. Martial arts, in the physical realm, and right wing-ness, in the political realm, follow this as their basis.
    The function of our neocortex is to inhibit the actions of the low brain. It allows us to suppress our instincts so we can apply whatever is most effective rather than what makes us feel good. This takes self-awareness and self-discipline, traits lacking in right wing conservative politicians as in novice budoka.
    Both these groups react to threats by ‘disproportionate response’ of undirected flailing at their antagonist, driven by a desire to injure and dominate in revenge. This makes them feel like they are doing something, and it releases psychoactive chemicals that make them feel better, even though it may not be effective and generally traps them into a cycle of violence.

    Politicians are rarely budo masters, but, ideally anyway, training would break the chain of hurt → anger → revenge → repeat. The ‘expert’ would deal with threats dispassionately, without ego, and with patience to forgo immediate gratification and apply long-term solutions. The low brained right winger uses aggression and justifies it as self defense. The left wing master employs non-aggression in such a way that defense becomes unnecessary.

  3. Uzza Says:

    You’re way too hard on yourself, but let’s take you at your word.
    “I am a terribly, almost dangerously emotionally imbalanced person.” + “The purpose of martial arts is to destroy another human being.” = “Karate is ideal for my benefit.”
    ***Does Not Compute**
    I know the talking point, karate teaches you to not use these waza (which makes all the training rather pointless) except ____ (fill in justification). Lip service aside, my experience of Shotokan provided no mechanism by which this purported teaching might be accomplished. If you are “more trained and skilled,” but “still found it almost impossible to fully contain my anger” perhaps the training does not perform as advertised?

    Few people are astute enough to make the connections you do equating ‘intuitive (aren’t they all intuitive? Mushin?) martial arts’ with right wingers. When attacked they can do not contain their anger, become irrational, let their ape brains take over. That is the problem; the solution is not developing more and better weapons, it is developing ways to control anger.

    Should we train to give an ape waza like Gyaku Tsuki, whose purpose, you say, is the same as that of a bullet or a Qassem—to kill others? Or should we train to control the ape brain so it does not take over? I think you’ll find that was Shoto’s goal, though he was not very successful at it.

  4. Uzza Says:

    You and I have a lot in common. We both have budo stories!
    When I was Sankyu, my spouse slapped at me playfully, apparently triggering some subliminal response, as my right leg came up and executed a perfect yoko geri, knocking said spouse across the room. Fortunately no injuries but I was mortified; it was as if my leg had a mind of its own.

    Fast forward several years, I am Shodan, feeling unworthy of the rank, in a managerial capacity and trying to defuse a tense situation with people fighting and screaming, when I felt something brush against my collar. Instantly I spun around, my technique was perfect, launched Jodan Gyaku Tsuki, and saw who was back there when my fist was maybe four inches from a woman’s face. She was merely trying to get my attention (Dumb Move!) and her eyes were as big as dinner plates when my fist stopped. But it stopped! Even in the heat of the moment, I stopped it, so I felt for the first time deserving of a black belt.

    Trouble was, my knife hand block as I turned around broke the woman’s arm. They talked about suing me, but we all knew they didn’t have a case, yet still, the injury was uncalled for. Effectively speaking, all the waza I had been taught were offensive, even the so-called defensive blocks. I needed something better …

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