"That's my story and I'm sticking to it, 'cause I got no reason to lie..."
- lyric from the Black Sabbath song, The Thrill of it All
The word for today is Verisimilitude.
In a recent discussion I was in with The Bombastic Bardamu , he made a point that resonated with me regarding blogging:
Verisimilitude and ethos are nearly impossible to fake. Indeed, verisimilitude is practically the coin of the realm in the blogosphere - without knowing who each other are, we have to judge each other based on the truthfulness (intentional and/or inadvertent) in each other's writing...
...indeed, the best writers in the manosphere - has this verisimilitude.
I agree, not only is it the coin of the realm...it is the defining trait of any blogger in any sphere of teh interwebz. As I wrote in A Salute to Conventional Wisdom:
I learned far more about the world as it really is, and about myself and my place in the real world, from the influences and insights gained from blogs, message boards and websites that inspired true introspection and productive ruminations…than I ever did watching tell-a-vision, the movies, or from the approximately 13 wasted years I spent in the State of Hawaii’s institutionalized public schooling system.
I discovered that everything I thought was real and true, were nothing but lies, misconceptions, misdirections and misinformation designed precisely to capitalize on, and exploit my health and my productive capacity, all for the benefit of the system…at the expense of my mental, spiritual and physical well-being.
It was never a case of simply falling for any old story found anywhere on the world wide web. Like everything else in so-called civilization, it’s full of bullshit and lies as well.
But the difference is, you can actually read something that may sound crazy on the internet…
…but ruminate on it…and observe various manifestations of those ideas in real life…or even experiment on yourself…
…and eventually discern which virtual tirades, manifestos, declarations or diatribes are justifiable and based on truths…and which ones are crackpot lunacies and monomaniacal mental disorders vomiting their mental wastes into the virtual ether.
There is nothing more convincing than experiences and anecdotes from anonymous authors who may be writing thousands of miles away from wherever you are logged on…who can describe behaviors, results or phenomena exactly the way you perceive or experience these things too. Similarities in human experiences that cut across cultural, socio-economic and religious differences are compelling anecdotes that can override the powerful influence and the illusory authority of so-called conventional wisdom.
Verisimilitude is the defining factor in determining the veracity of any particular writer's advice or observations that run counter to the conventional wisdom.
Before becoming an avid blog reader, I was an avid mass media consumer.
I used to read a variety of newspapers, magazines, and watch a lot of television "News" and "Journalist Investigation" type shows. I used to think I knew a lot about a whole range of topics. I did not realize just how much of what I thought I knew was nothing more than literal Mass Media PROGRAMMING.
When I first began reading anti-establishment blogs and alternative media articles, I often encountered a writer saying "everything you think you know is simply what has been told to you by those who control the mass media narrative." I used to have a knee jerk, defensive attitude towards that observation: "Whatever...I think for myself!"
Except that up until I discovered the vibrant underground of politically incorrect blogging (on a whole host of topics), my thoughts were completely influenced by the TV and all of the reinforcement of the mainstream narratives from the mainstream print media.
Thanks to the verisimilitude of many excellent bloggers, I've discovered just how extensive and pervasive this programming was. I now recognize so many lies and deceptions the moment I see them...on TV, in the movies, in advertising and in print.
Lies. Everywhere you look in our Brave New World Order.
It's why I no longer read newspapers, nor watch any kind of news shows or any other sort of TV programming that's supposedly "FACT BASED REPORTING."
Thanks to the verisimilitude of people who blog, I've embraced a radical, anti-establishment lifestyle.
By eschewing commodity crops and advocating the consumption of grass-fed meat, pastured eggs, and local produce, we are making several very, very powerful enemies.
The medical and nutritional establishments hate paleo, because we’re exposing the fact that they’ve been wrong for decades and have killed millions of people with their bad advice.
The agribusinesses and industrial food processors hate paleo, because we’re hurting their business by not buying their highly profitable grain - and soy-based products.
The mainstream media hates paleo, because they profit handsomely from advertising those grain- and soy-based products.
The government hates paleo, because they’re the enforcement arm of big agribusinesses, industrial food processors, and mainstream media—and because their subsidy programs create mountains of surplus grain that must be consumed somehow.
Is anyone surprised that a government which spends billions of dollars subsidizing the production of corn, soy, and wheat, would issue nutritional recommendations emphasizing the consumption of corn, soy, and wheat?
And this is why, despite all their rhetoric, the vegans end up on the same team as Monsanto and Pepsico: their interests are aligned. - J. Stanton
I used to minimize my consumption of animal foods, and try to avoid saturated fats as much as possible. And I kept steadily gaining weight and trending towards obesity in my late 20's and early 30's. Thanks to the verisimilitude of bloggers in the "paleosphere", I now eat a diet heavy in animal protein and saturated fat. I avoid processed convenience and fast foods, and I've lost all that excess weight and find myself trim and in better shape at 38 years old, than when I was 28 years old.
I use salt at nearly every meal. I eat eat fried foods all the time too. The difference is I use naturally derived, minimally processed sea salt and I deep fry with coconut oil and pan fry with saved bacon grease and lots of butter. According to mass media conventional "wisdom," I'm supposed to be fat and suffering from high blood pressure. My latest blood pressure measurement from a couple of days ago? 116/72. I've been eating like this for years now.
Verisimilitude. The mass media narrative doesn't have it. The problem is that it is so pervasive, and broadcast through so many various mediums that reinforce each other, that it induces the illusion of verisimilitude. It took extreme cognitive dissonance to finally face the ugly truths after a lifetime of being steeped in the pretty lies of mass media programming. In other words, after years of eating non-fat dairy, vegetarian meat substitute products, non-dairy creamers, non-fat/non-stick cooking sprays, and a daily diet of whole-grain products and 'cholesterol free' spreads, I hit the point where I could no longer close the top button of my pants because my belly was sticking out. BUT I'M EATING HEALTHY?!?!??!?! WTF?!?!? So I logged on to the internet and began googling diet and weight loss, and eventually discovered the Weston A. Price Foundation...which eventually lead me to the Paleo Blogosphere.
Other ways in which the verisimilitude of certain writers in the blogosphere have influenced my life:
~ I avoid fluoridated water and use fluoride-free toothpaste.
~ I avoid using sunscreen, and sunbathe at every possible opportunity during the window of time for which conventional wisdom deems most dangerous - 11:00am to 3:00pm.
~ I occasionally smoke tobacco.
~ I eat as much red meat as I can afford.
~ I quit chronic-cardio exercise in an attempt to control my weight, and focus solely on weight lifting and high-intensity/interval training exercise.
Oh, and of course, thanks to the verisimilitude of guys like John Ross and other anonymous bloggers, I figured out my former attitudes and beliefs about gender and relationships were a recipe for failure. I didn't even grasp how I put the female gender on a pedestal and followed the mass media's emasculation program.
Recognize it when you see it. It just might change your life.