North Korea : The Sidis Connection

There was this bit on Nightline…

They had a bit about North Korea.

And they were talking about how all the people, including the kids in N.Korea are taught that the US invaded Korea way back then…and the Nightline people are making it sound like it’s ‘lying communist propaganda’ that’s drilled into the brainwashed Korean masses who have ‘no access to American sitcoms’….I’m paraphrasing…

And I’m thinking – well, er…where’s the lie? It’s not like Korea tried to invade America.

I mean – I like to take a bird’s eye view of these things.

And at no point were there thousands of Korean troops, in say, New York…or in Los Angeles. However, US Troops were all over Asia. So – I don’t see what the ‘lie’ part is…

And then – this is the shit part. They show this footage…

4 year old Korean kids playing the piano perfectly.

8 year old kids illustrating beautifully

10 year old kids diving fantastically off boards…

6 year old girls playing UNFRETTED string instruments beautifully.

And the reporter dude…starts talking about how, although they are very skilful – he can’t help but feel they are ‘mechanical, robotic’ – and I’m thinking YOU COCKSUCKER.

Talk about defensive psychologies of denial.

I’m sitting there watching prodigies, child prodigies. Fucking geniuses…a culture that appears much defined, very stylized – and very skilled…

And he needs to feel and tell the US and global audience that the ‘cost’ of this ‘skill’ is that they mechanical and robotic, he even implies that although ‘they appear to be smiling’ – they are ‘taught’ to smile during performances – so ‘we can’t tell how they’re really feeling’.

And I’m thinking Jesus Christ – this is somebody who has no skills, he has no idea how it feels to play an instrument beautifully, to draw fantastically, etc…skill is largely it’s own reward.

And he’s just a resentful cocksucker who can’t believe that these little kids could be talented, and better taught that the average Western/American kid.

And then – it reminded me – of William James Sidis.

William James, the psychologist – knew this guy – a psychologist from Poland, I think it was? Or Czech…I forget. Called Boris Sidis…Anyway, he helped Boris come to the states. And Boris had a son, who he named (in honour of William James) William James Sidis – and William James was his godfather.

Anyway – Boris was nowhere near stupid, nor was his wife. And by the time William James was 4 he could read several languages. Speak Latin, Greek, Etc…etc..

And by the time he was 8 he was doing higher mathematics, etc…Lectured on 11th Dimensional mathematics at Harvard or whatever at age 10 or 11. He was the youngest student ever admitted into Harvard. And by all accounts, he was not only a multi-faceted genius; he was also a remarkably kind man.

He wrote a book called ‘The Animate & The Inanimate’ – which predicted black holes, long before Einstein did. And postulated two chronologies…two timelines…that things that appear to us inanimate are going opposite us in time, and vice-versa, etc…it’s a whole thing he’s got thought out, it’s an interesting book, came online about 2 years ago.

And besides that, he also wrote a book, which nobody ever agreed to publish – this was still the 1930’s, 1940’s…called ‘The Tribes & The States’. In which, well…Sidis – believed that the ‘cowboy’ had ‘stolen’ the identity of the Native American.

He argued that all the values that people chose to endow the cowboy with in popular culture, plain, straight talk, savage nobility, etc…were in fact the traits of the Native Americans – not something that the European invaders had brought along with them. In fact, history had shown them to be filthy, uncouth, etc..etc…and that all the values they were ‘proud’ of – were b
asically aped from the Native Americans.

He also apparently wrote about how the US government had suffered an early coup d’etat early on, a bit after the ‘revolution’ and that since then it’s been not quite a democracy, as it was originally intended to be.

In any case, none of this got officially published.

The point is – that …although Sidis himself was intelligent, kind, etc…

By the time he got to Harvard, and was admitted to a school – where all the other kids were much older…well, the kids there had a field day with him. They mocked him, had jokes at his expense and basically did their best to make him feel like a shit.

Norbert Weiner – heard of him – saw some of this first hand – he was a prodigy too, but he had a thicker hide, and was older. But he saw what they did to Sidis.

Sidis – at first – well, the papers loved him, the press loved him, and he was a social novelty. Then their attitude changed – he went from being ‘cute’ and ‘novel’ to being a freak. He hadn’t changed – at all – but they decided to treat him that way. He got sick of it, and eventually became a recluse. Started taking menial jobs, stupid-ass jobs he could do with both eyes closed and with his brain taped under his chair. When people would ask him simple things, he’d use a calculator, as though this was not the same man who could compute astronomical figures instantly in his head.

And he disappeared from public view.

Years later, the NY Times did a novelty feature ‘Whatever happened to?‘ and they brought him up again and it was horrible. Cruel. They made him out to be a disappointment – a genius who had burnt out early. Became a nothing.

He was infuriated. Came out of hiding to sue them.

They said he couldn’t – since he was a public figure – they had a right to talk about him He said he wasn’t a public figure. In court, when asked about his previous feats of genius, etc…he admitted to almost none of them, didn’t want to seem special in any way.

“Do you speak foreign languages?” they asked.

“No”, he’d say.

“But you translate, like..9 languages”, they’d ask.

“Yes.” He’d admit, reluctantly.

“But you just said..”

“You asked me if I spoke them. I choose not to.” He’d say.


Eventually, he lost the case. And meanwhile, the NY Times had made him seem like a loser, a total burnout. In the meantime, though, he’d adopted what he considered Native American ideals of anonymous utility…

Well, they didn’t know that.

Anyway – in the meantime, he’d written things under assumed names.

And he’d written ‘The Animate & The Inanimate

And ‘The Tribes & The States

And apparently was working on at least two other manuscripts, who the fuck knows.



Painfully sad.

So here, I am – watching a whole generation of potential Sidis…and what does Nightline have to say about those kids? That they are mechanical, robotic, and what does the reporter do, he even tries to rape their smiles.

There you go.

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  1. not sure what is my opinion on sidi, the korean and what have you.

    but thanx for a great and most enjoyable post.

    keep the good work

  2. Here is my bird’s eye view:

    This “invasion”, as the North Koreans call it, was a part of 2 wars, the first was when the Soviet Union invaded Korea to get rid of the Japanese occupation after World War II and to force Korea to join the communist side, and in response the USA landed it’s forces in the South to prevent the USSR from eating up the entire country.

    The second war was after North Korea invaded the South in 1950, and as a response the United Nations sent forces from 16 countries (including the USA) to join the South in their battle against the communist invasion which was supported by China and the USSR.

    I am not surprised, however, that a regime like the North Korean one would portray the American presence in that country as an evil thing, while not saying the same about the USSR, China, the rest of the UN forces, or the North Korean regime itself.

    As for those talented children, every totalitarian regime presents its cream for world to enhance its image.

    As for the smiling part, it is a known practice (in any place) that actors or children are taught to smile during a performance, not to mention in a repressive country ruled by a dictatorship that wants to present a certain image to the rest of the world.

    So in reality, in a country where people seek freedom and political asylum by escaping to CHINA of all countries, I don’t think I will automatically believe everything presented to me in that country.

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