Problems In Projection

It is a sad fact that our contemporary political world is at the space where an understanding of projection becomes the most obvious way to understand the behavior of various would-be political elites.  Today I would like to talk about this issue in one case that has proven to be deeply interesting and complicated, and that is the problem of Ukraine.  I wish to note at the outset [1] that I am hostile to Russian expansion and inclined to support the desires for obtaining and maintaining of independence for any nation that wishes to escape or preserve its freedom from being swallowed up by the Russian bear.  It is furthermore my belief that Russia is going to have to eventually be able to endure being next to Western culture without attempting to seize other territory to serve as a buffer to protect its insecure culture from more dynamic Western culture.  I have little sympathy with those who wish for Russia to view itself as having a legitimate reason to dominate its smaller neighbors.

I feel it necessary to say that because it appears as if the good people of Ukraine and their leaders have been fed some bologna sandwiches by certain grifting political figures in the West that claim that only one-world leftist elites have the best interests of the Ukrainian people (and other small peoples of the world) in mind and that those who are less internationalist in their leanings are in favor of bullying and swaggering world leaders like Putin who have a fondness for oppressing others.  There is no doubt that this sort of libel is useful for the grifters themselves, who seek to pose as friends in order to place their corrupt friends and relatives and advisers in lucrative positions for fun and profit, and who gain in influence in foreign countries out of appeals to fear that the victory of those who are opposed to left-wing international socialism would mean harm to countries like Ukraine that want to be free and want a good international reputation and some standing in international institutions and be able to chart a course of its own that is free of domination by imperialist neighbors.

As a point of fact, it has been my own personal experience that those who have a healthy and moderate form of nationalism that seeks to encourage people to vote for those who will serve the best interests of their own country also tend to be in favor of similar attitudes in other nations.  For example, I find that people who tend to support moderate populism in the United States also support it in the UK when it comes to supporting those who want to leave the EU.  By and large, these people are also fond of Taiwan and freedom in Hong Kong and are more than a bit suspicious of China.  This can be repeated throughout the world, depending on the extent to which these people are aware of what is going on around the world.  A mistrust of corrupt institutions tends to lead to a degree of empathy and support for those who struggle against the same corruption and grift that can be found not only in our own country but around the world.  And such incidents of grift are all too easy to find wherever we look around us because one of the benefits of being an elite is seeking to gain personal profit from the increased power of the state as well as supranational institutions and crony capitalist firms.

It is in this atmosphere that projection becomes such a serious problem.  For example, the accusation that someone is involved in corruption in a given country by contemporary leftists (and their fluffers in the mainstream media) is usually a giveaway that they themselves are involved in that sort of corruption themselves, as has been discovered about our former Vice President as well as the Speaker of the House.  And there are no doubt other people who will likely be caught in similar problems themselves as more time is spent investigating the matter and determining who it is that has profited from being executives in firms that profit from the aid that has been given to Ukraine and other countries.  Where large amounts of money flows, large amounts of grift can also be found, and this grift can reliably be found to profit local as well as Western corrupt elites, to the detriment of the legitimacy of such governments in the eyes of their people and in others who feel that the contemporary world is designed to skew in favor of some classes of people and not others based on political power and influence.

How do we stop projection?  On the one hand, we cannot stop other people from projecting, although we can disarm it through recognition of the pattern that people will often accuse others of what they are themselves guilty of.  But it is immensely useful that we not be guilty of the same thing ourselves, lest our loud condemnations of others send others looking in the darker corners of our own closets and in the messier aspects of our own existence.  Knowing that human beings tend to be quite sensitive to matters where their own conduct is not above board, we can cultivate patterns of reflection and self-awareness so that we are not self-deceived and blinded by our own protestations of moral superiority to those around us.  Being honest with ourselves and others in an age where such honesty is viewed as folly is by no means easy, but we can be less foolish as we are honest if we recognize that the accusations of others are often the most fruitful places we can investigate what others are up to.  The fact that others are often blind to their own problems means that we can often have an advantage in dealing with the inevitable hurly burly of life in the public world in being honest as well as shrewd, as wise as serpents and harmless as doves.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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