Angilbert (fl. ca. 840/50), On the Battle Which was Fought at Fontenoy

The Law of Christians is broken,
Blood by the hands of hell profusely shed like rain,
And the throat of Cerberus bellows songs of joy.

Angelbertus, Versus de Bella que fuit acta Fontaneto

Fracta est lex christianorum
Sanguinis proluvio, unde manus inferorum,
gaudet gula Cerberi.

Friday, May 21, 2010

By Nature Equal: How Are Men Created Equal? Identifying the Host Property, Part 3

SINGULARITY IS THE NEXT CRITERION that Coons and Brennan explore in their survey of the Western convention of human equality. Having tentatively identified the host property of human equality to be the capacity of the self to accept or reject the duty of the lateral moral order (the duty of reciprocity) that arises from man's encounter with another of his kind, Coons and Brennan explore whether this tentatively-identified host property is sufficiently singular or unique as to form the foundation of human equality. Whether the host property is sufficient singular to meet the criterion of singularity is closely related to whether it meets the criterion of importance.

Coons and Brennan perceive the convention of human equality to spring from a certain dignity in man, one that is derived or is based upon a "discrete metaphysical status." (p. 58) Either the relation itself, or the host property from which that relation springs, must relate to a unique metaphysical feature in man if we are to be true to the Western convention.


Creation of Eve by Michelangelo
Sistine Chapel

Before his encounter with Eve, Adam had the power of moral commitment: he had moral duties to God, and he had some attenuated moral obligation to creation arising from his dominion over them. Following his encounter with Eve, however, this moral capacity in man underwent a radical awakening, a transformation. It was as if Adam was a complete man only in potentia, potentially, until his encounter with Eve, whereafter he became complete man in actum, in act. The transformation is so fundamental one can say that, in a manner of speaking, in Adam's encounter with Eve, humanity was born. It was not good for man to be alone, the Scriptures say God said within himself, implying that man's good required that there be more than one of his kind and that there be lateral obligations that arise from such encounter with another of his kind. Thus, this relation of Adam and Eve is a source relation because it is the cause or source of a host property. It would appear that the relation between Adam and Eve is what gives rise to the host property which Coons and Brennan have tentatively identified, that being the capacity of the self to accept or reject the duty of the lateral moral order (the duty of reciprocity) since it did not exist but in potentia before such relation. (pp.44, 59) This relation in fact meets the singularity criterion that Coons and Brennan had, at the outset of their investigation, set forth as an indicium of the host property of human equality. It is distinct from the ascendant and descendent moral orders, however important they may be.
[T]he relation of mutually conscious persons is a metaphysical novum. It literally springs into existence with the encounter [between Adam and Eve]. . . . [W]e have . . . [through Adam] encountered the homo sapiens next door and in her discovered a different kettle of moral fish.
(p. 60) Coons and Brennan insist that this source relation that gives rise to the host property of reciprocity presupposes an objective moral order, one independent of the will of Adam, that is, one independent of the will of man. Man is not the measure of the lateral order, but must discover it, must recognize it, and must conform to it.

Here arises a problematic. With increasing frequency in the West, the notion of a preexisting and objective moral order has been rejected. We are increasingly skeptical, increasing relativistic in our ethic. The rejection of an objective moral order is endemic in our academia, our intelligentsia, our media, and our political and legal institutions. There is a disintegration of our moral fiber, of our received conventions. As such, the convention upon which Coons and Brennan rely to identify human equality is seriously threadbare. Even if we still tenuously hold on to the convention that such an objective moral order exists, a "preinstitutional source" of morality, such a hold is accidental, as we have lost our theory of such an order. (p. 63) We have forgotten the natural law. It is as we have become Kakure Kirishitan: over time our Christ appears more and more like Buddha, our Mary more and more like Kannon, and our Pater noster sounds more and more like a Buddhist chant. Only instead of replacing Christianity with Buddhism, Christianity has been displaced with secularism, materialism, relativism, individualism, all products of a modernity that has sloughed of its Christian past with greater and greater relish and greater aggressiveness. Did the Christian faith leave the Kakure Kirishitan, and if it did, when? After so many planks of different wood have been replaced from the original, when does the Ship of Theseus lose its original character? When is it no longer the same ship? How much of our original convention remains? Are we as a society no longer Christian? No longer Western? Are we as a society no longer believers in an objective moral order? Are we as a society all relativists, all skeptics? Has that critical point been reached? It is a matter of debate.
If one concludes that belief in a natural and/or revealed order of morality is no longer typical, then for that individual our conclusion that Americans believe the convention defining human equality to be a statement of truth is simply wrong. Indeed, even the shared definition of equality could have evaporated along with the belief in an unchosen morality--another victim of modernity
(p. 64) Whether supported by the consensus of convention or not is ultimately immaterial as to whether this objective moral exists. If the consensus of convention no longer supports that there is a reality beyond mere convention, but the consensus of convention is now that all is convention, that says nothing about the real. It simply means that our convention is no longer reflective of, and, like an old and feeble man has become blinded to, the reality that is out there.

Coons and Brennan then recapitulate the results of their exploration before they turn to the last criterion of the host property that they have identified as the likely foundation of human equality: that is the criterion of uniformity.
If it exists, human equality will be a relation springing from the capacity to commit to the lateral good. In exercising this choice individuals assign meaning to themselves, forging a principal portion of their identity. Thus the specific capacity to accept or reject the search for the content of our obligation to others confronts us as both an opportunity and fate. It is opportunity insofar as the freedom to seek correct behavior makes moral self-perfection an option; it is fate insofar as that choice either to honor to to flout this obligation is inescapable. Each of us determines whether the dignity of others shall be honored; in so doing we settle our own identity. This capacity is the obvious host for the relation of equality, but only if it satisfies the final criterion of uniformity
(p. 65)

That will be the exploration of our next blog posting.

10 comments:

  1. WLindsay WheelerMay 21, 2010 at 7:57 AM

    First off, the phrase "Moral Order" is used. "Order" presupposes hierarchy, rythm, and repitition. Equality is not a part of Order. So right here, there is a logical inconsistency. The profs talk about an "objective moral order" and yet propose equality is the overriding principle. This is Illogical.

    Next, it is great that Adam and Eve are portrayed. There is no such thing as Gender equality; men and women are NOT equal. So trying to figure out that the procession and advent of Eve somehow proves equality is just wrong. Eve is the Inferior of Adam. Right off the bat. Man is made in the Image of God, females were started from Man. Woman is the glory of Man, but not its strict image of God. Man was made in the Image of God and then woman was made second! Right there is Order. Man is first, Woman second. The Objective Moral Order right here shows Hierarchy, that of precedence. And then woman was made from Man! The Order of Genesis shows Inequality, not equality. Woman is inferior to man. The relation of Man to woman is of Superior to Inferior.

    Second, Woman's reasoning is far different from Masculine reasoning. In his book, Sex Differences, Modern Biology and the Unisex Fallacy uses modern biology to show that science proves the inequality between man and woman. More specifically, the development of the corpus callosum, one of the most important parts of the brain, is hampered in development by Male Testosterone. In the woman, it grows thick, fat, and more heavily connects both sides of the Brain.

    This changes reasoning in the human brain. In a recent show, a scientist came forward to demonstrate the reasoning process between genders. The Male shows a linear thinking process that starts in the rear and progresses in a linear progression to the frontal lobes. A woman's thought process starts in the rear as well and then does a loop before going to the Frontal Lobe. Men's reasoning is far different from Woman's reasoning.

    Two completely different operations. Eve is significantly differnt from Adam, in more ways than one. The relation of Adam to Eve is NOT a relation of equality but of superior to inferior. So the relation created when Eve was generated was one of INequality not equality.

    And this is big, At the very beginning, at the core, Inequality is shown! Not Equality. Adam would have noticed immediately a Physical difference. The relation is one of Difference. If difference is shown, means that there is Inequality! In the system of Macrocosm/Microcosm, if there is a physical difference, then there is a soul difference and a mentality difference. We all know that there are hormonal differences as well. You can not come to any conclusion about Equality from the beginning! You just can't!

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  2. It is clear after reading this blog over a three months here and that several Christian intellectuals changed the definition of the Natural Law and upon further investigation, that nobody, but nobody has a clue on the real, original Natural Law.

    What I see is that these profs are using St. Alberts definition of the Natural Law saying that we have nothing in common with brute animals. That humans operate on "pure reasoning".

    Well, what is God creating in the Garden of Eden? He is not only creating two genders, he is creating a Family as well. See, man is not self-sufficient! The Lack of self-sufficiency is the sign of an inner core of inequality! Self-sufficeincy requires equality at the core. Man was made deficient; man is not able to reproduce himself! Man at his core is Inequal; he can not reproduce himself.

    In order to reproduce, he needs another. (Not to mention the psychological need for another.) Woman was made that can reproduce, but can not impregnate herself!

    Thus it takes two. The inner core law of the Family is Harmony. Harmony, (q.v. Aristotle's Metaphysics) is "The Mix between High and Low". This is the Natural Law. The Family is the central core of the Natural Law and the Family is Self-suffienct. It can reproduce itself! The Natural Law of Harmony immediately disproves the thesis of this book and their arguments from Genesis. God is creating a Family in Genesis, NOT individuals!

    One of the most basic premises of this book is looking at human beings in a sanitized, deracinated, bland individual person. They have compartmentalized the human being away from all his physical and sociological underpinnings. They define man soley "by reason" alone. Man is NOT just "reason".

    Another basic Natural Law, a law from Common sense (q.v. Jacques Maritain, Intro to Philosophy) is that "The whole is made up of parts". Man is not a whole, but a part of a whole, the Family. The whole is prior to the part as Aristotle teaches. The whole is marked by the Law of Harmony! Harmony teaches "the mix of the high and low". Right there, the real original natural Law disproves the thesis of these two Catholic Academia. Man is high and Woman is the Low because the two exist in a whole called the Family, which is self-sufficent! The relation between Man to woman is from Superior to Inferior--right out of the gate.

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  3. WLindsay WheelerMay 21, 2010 at 9:46 AM

    The title of this book is By Nature Equal,The Anatomy of a Western Insight "...must relate to a unique metaphysical feature in man if we are to be true to the Western convention."

    The title betrays a glaring error of this book.

    First, Equality is NOT a Western Insight! The authors here in this book acknowledge that Aristotle taught a "Natural Inequality" and their book is about refuting Aristotle. The rule of thumb is what comes first is usually more true.

    This book is not about a "Western Convention" whatsoever! Because right there in their mention of Aristotle, that this WAS NOT the case! Aristotle, the beginning of Western Thought, is about Natural INequality! So no this is not a Western convention.

    What is this?

    This is about proving and backing up Stoicism. This book is about defending an error in Western Thought, a type of Western Buddihism. From Wikipedia:

    "A distinctive feature of Stoicism is its cosmopolitanism. All people are manifestations of the one universal spirit and should, according to the Stoics, live in brotherly love and readily help one another. In the Discourses, Epictetus comments on man's relationship with the world: "Each human being is primarily a citizen of his own commonwealth; but he is also a member of the great city of gods and men, where of the city political is only a copy." ...They held that external differences such as rank and wealth are of no importance in social relationships. Thus, before the rise of Christianity, Stoics advocated the brotherhood of humanity and the natural equality of all human beings.

    This Stoic idea of that All men are created equal led to the killing fields of the American and French Revolutions. (q.v. The Origins of Socialism, George Lichtheim). It was the American revolution that fueled the French Revolution and it was the French Revolution that fueled, what Eric von Kuenhelt-Leddihn to title, the Three Centuries of the G: guillotines, gaols, gallows, gas chambers and gulags.

    The French Revolution spawned the 1848 Paris Revolution which spawned Karl Marx's Communism. Karl Marx's communism is formed around the Stoic Idea of Human Equality! Communism then spawned Fascism, its alter ego! The root and soul of Marxism of the egalitarian movement is Human equality and these two Catholic professors are giving intellectual support to something that has political repurcussions. This Stoic idea has found its way into Freemasonry, communism, modern republicanism and all forms of Democracy which have attacked Roman Catholicism!

    Human equality is not a Christian teaching. Stoicism is not Christianity. The materialist sophists, Epicetus and Democritus are also part of the West, but their sophistry is not part of the "Western convention", so why is Stoicism! Look there are many intellectual streams in Western Culture. Not just one. And Stoicism is NOT it.

    If there is such a thing as a Western convention, it is Plato and Aristotle! Plato and Aristotle are the foundation, base and cornerstone of Western culture, and civilization. Not the Stoics! When these two authors attack Aristotle, it is not because of a "Western convention". Their title is the complete opposite, they are attacking Western convention with Stoicism and calling it "a Western Convention". That is how convulted this book is!

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  4. I probably won't be here over the weekend, so I have to cram my objections in this post here.

    Next thing to consider is that I read the conclusion of this book. On page 247, they have race called a "race problem". Race is a problem? Right from the get go, they intimate that Race is not real. On page 248, they call it a "plague".

    On page 251, they write this: "In defining human excellence, the gnostic properly abandons the empty distinction of race;..."

    Race is an "Empty distinction".

    The whole thesis of this book is based on "Individualism". That man is portrayed as simply an "Individual". This runs the whole gamut. They then deracinate further and degenderlize man as well when they create this "Host" meme to demonstrate their thinking. They have divorced man from his surroundings, environment, relations, in order to create a sanitized relation. Man is stripped bare, put ontop of a telescope and then evaluated.

    Aristotle writes "Man is a Social Animal". In Genesis, after awhile, God comes to the point and creates the family when he creates the female. At there, God makes man a SOCIAL Animal. Not an individual. From the Family comes Race, the second Group; The next social organization. Family-Race. Man is NOT an Individual. This is the Enlightenment/Masonic idea of man, but not the Will and Plan of God. To stress "indivual" is the sign of Masonic, even Libertarian, Liberalism passions, but is not the Natural Law.

    These professors, in that last chapter discussing race, Race is of no importance to them. All men are individuals. Duty to one's race, loyalty, feelings of cohesion, are all nonsense to them, and these Professors then have the gall to talk about "Moral Perfection"? What virtue teaches to not favor one's kind? That I should treat a different race the same as my own? That is MORAL PERFECTION?

    We are part animal for god sakes! Where is Love here in the discussion of these professors? Jesus Christ said, "you can not serve two masters". Either you will love the one and hate the other" Or you should love the other and hate the one! The Natural law is "the Rule of One is Best". Moral perfection requires our love of our kinsmen---FIRST! Kinsmen go first! Love is not reason! Love is an emotion. Love is felt in the Breast! We are Attracted to our kind. Man is a social Animal. Blood is thicker than water which Reason does not intrude. Moral Perfection is about obeying those instincts! How can we be a member of a group, and then have love of another race? We can't serve two masters! This is NOT Reason--This is How Nature works! How can you have Moral Perfection outside a group? Outside of the Family? Outside one's Race?

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  5. If what Coons and Brennan argue is true, that two host bodies, Adam and Eve are equal, due to their reasonings and able to chose freely their moral perfection, then that ought to be transmitted through Macrocosm/Microcosm.

    But the concrete physical appearance of the female body is different and unequal to the man's. Women's legs are in general much shorter than a mans. Women have no upper body strength. If the body is different and unequal, under the Natural Law system of Macrocosm/microcosm, then the mind as well is different and unequal.

    See, in Metaphysics and discusing the Natural Law, one must use skelton of the natural law, which is the principle of Macrocosm/microcosm. This is where Socrates gets his principle of consistency. If it works in one sphere, it ought to work in the next sphere. Coons and Brennan think they are talking the Natural Law, but macrocosm/microcosm does not appear, nor figures in their text anywhere, and then their supposition is not carried to other spheres. If there are differences in the physical, there are differences in the Soul! One can't have equality here, and then be absent equality there. Either it is equality across the board, or it is Inequality across the board. No in-betweens. That is the Rule of Macrocosm/microcosm. These two profs do not test their thought. Macrocosm/Microcosm disproves their theory.

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  6. Next, what should be considered is Georges Dumezil's finding of Trifunctionality in the European races. Dumezil did extensive studies of language and came to find a certain "trifunctionality" characteristic to Europeans. This manifests itself in the language. Language is the physical representation of thought, and thought is the product of Reason.

    Georges Dumezil right there shows the incompleteness of the thought of Coons and Brennan. They are not aware. How does this """"Fact"""" of observable reality mesh with their sophistry? Philosophy, as Jacques Maritain points out, is based on the """data""" of experience. Nature must guide our reasonings. European "reasonings" are different from African reasonings, from Asiatic reasonings from Semitic reasonings. They deracinate man, give him "pure unadulterated reasoning" and then conclude man's equality! The Being of reasoning is the same in all men, but the Act of reasoning is very different amongst men. Race impacts reasoning. So this blows their whole thesis out of the water.

    Again, a guy by the name of Thorleif Boman writes a book titled Hebrew Thought Compared to Greek. How can this guy write this book when Coons and Brennan advocate that all men reason the same. That reasoning is what makes man equal. Boman places Jacques Derrida in the Hebraic tradition of deconstructionism. Jacques Derrida is the Father of Deconstructionism. Is this part of the "Western Convention"?

    This all gets kind of silly, they write a book saying "Equality is part of the Western Culture" and yet to use the word "Western" automatically differentiates it. Is not the West DIFFERENT from the East? And that difference is result of polylogicism.

    See, Ludwig von Mises, (don't be fooled by the 'von' for he is a Jew) writes that all men think the same. (Curious because he is one of the Fathers of Libertarianism another Enlightement sophistry and libertarianism promotes Individualism over race.) In his book Human Action, he has a chapter called "Economics and the Revolt against Reason" and in a subchapter has an essay on "polylogism" which he calls a fallacy but here he writes:

    Quote:
    "Marxian polylogism asserts that the logical structure of the mind is different with the members of various social classes. Racial polylogism differs from Marxian polylogism only in so far as it ascribes to each race a peculiar logical structure of mind and maintains that all members of a definite race, no matter what their class affiliation may be, are endowed with this peculiar logical structure."

    I concur. There is such a thing as polylogism. That is only true if there is such a thing as Race. And so no, reasoning does not prove equality for in the very act of reasoning, different tribes of men think differently! As the Scripture proclaims, God made man's ways diverse. What is the "way"? How they think upon things. Coons and Brennan like many Catholic Academia disprove of race. That is an error right there. They are nihilists.

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  7. What Coons and Brennan are doing, is making metaphyical errors in logic; they are dicombobulating, what is termed in Biology, "Family, species", or "Genus and Family" and Species.

    Coons and Brennan do not have to go "reason" to attempt to preach "human equality"; they could have just gone to the physical body!!!!!

    Do not women have two arms just like men do? Yes. That means men and women are equal!

    Do not women have two legs just like men do? Yes. That means men and women are equal.

    Do Germans have two legs just like Frenchmen do? Yes. That means Germans and Frenchmen are equal.

    You can take their argument and apply it just the same to the physical body. All humans share the same BASIC human shape---ergo--all men are created equal!

    But basic human shape and reason is the core of what is a "Human being" which is the """"Genus"""" but not the Species!!!! Socrates makes this very clear in logical discussions, is that the Genus/Family is not confused with the Species. There is the Bovine family. All bovines are in the same family, but all the bovines within the family are different. The species Bison are not the species Herford cows. Bison are not the species Brahmins. And vice a versa.

    They are committing the error of monomanicalism. They are destroying distinction of rank; the distinction of caste; of classification! They are destroying the species and converting it all to the "Genus".

    There is in Reality, a General idea and then the specific idea. Deductive and inductive reasoning. They are overwhelming the deductive with the Inductive and making all things One. When that is NOT the case! Yes, all human beings are human beings. We all belong to the same Genus, Homo Sapiens, but there are Breeds (French word, Race) of men! They are deconstructing and destroying species by conglomerating all things into the Genus!

    We are Equal and yet Unequal at the same time! We are all Human beings, but those humanbeings are divided into Spaniards, Africans, Arabians, Chinese, women and males. This is the Golden Mean. We are equal in our Genus but unequal in our Species! We are equal in that we all have the being of reason but we are unequal in the act or use of reason. We are equal in that we all have the same body shape, we are unequal in the act of the body shape.

    These two guys are destroying logic.

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  8. The book is all about "Moral perfection".

    Okay, what is moral perfection and these two professors say it is "freely chosen". I can chose to make my own "moral perfection".

    Wow.

    Perfection. That is certainly a Western convention. It is called "Arete" in Greek. It was the central driving idea/value/ideal/motivation of the Greek soul. Arete is translated as "Virtue" in English. Virtue is that "moral perfection". Here is the definition of Righteousness which is a Virtue. (From the psuedo-Aristotelian Virtues and Vices)

    "To righteousness it belongs to be ready to distribute according to desert, and to preserve ancestral customs and traditions and the established laws, and to tell the truth when interest is at stake, and to keep agreements. First among the claims of righteousness are our duties to the gods, then our duties to the spirits, then those to country and parents, then those to the departed; and among these claims is piety, which is either a part of righteousness or a concomitant of it. Righteousness is also accompanied by holiness and truth and loyalty and hatred of wickedness".

    Duty to country and parents? To uphold customs and traditions? Who created those customs and traditions? The Parents and the forefathers.

    How can you have Equality, hate racism and then have duty to your parents and forefathers and uphold traditions and customs? This right here refutes every single word of that book. The object of loyalty, as Jesus said, is of One Master. A person can only have One Master. This is the mystery of Reality. Either you Love your kinsmen and hate the Other ORRRRR you hate your kinsmen and love the other. There is No in between. That is why you see Angelina Jolie and Madonna go run off to adopt foreigners. That is why the Liberal establishments of the European countries are in love with foreigners and betraying their kinsmen.

    Moral Perfection? Love starts at Home. Love is not a reason. It doesn't flow from mental calculations. Love flows from the Heart. Love is an animalistic character. Like produces Like and Love likes its kind. I find it unnerving that humans are reduced to thinking machines in this book. No emotion, no spirit, no familial connections; Man is simply a thinking machine.

    This Virtue of righteousness, which is Moral Perfection, counterdicts all what Coons and Brennan are trying to advocate. Loyalty has only one Master for its object. If it is not by blood, then it is not right. What Coons and Brennan are really teaching is that I must hate my own and adopt Everything as my friend. I can make no distinctions or otherwise fall into the plague.

    Right!

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  9. FYI from The Protocols of the Elder Zion.

    Chap I "The would-be wise men of the goyim, the intellectuals, could not make anything out of the uttered words in their abstractness; did not note the contradiction of their meaning and inter-relation: did not see that in nature there is no equality, cannot be freedom: that Nature herself has established inequality of minds, of characters, and capacities, just as immutable as she has established subordination to her laws:..."

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  10. By chance, Lawerence Auster, who blogs at "View from the Right" posted something that concerns the thesis of Coons and Brennan.

    This is from Leo Strauss passage for context:

    "Man cannot reach his perfection except in society or, more precisely, in civil society. Civil society, or the city as the classics conceived of it, is a closed society and is, in addition, what today would be called a "small society." ... A society meant to make man's perfection possible must be kept together by mutual trust, and trust presupposes acquaintance. Without such trust, the classics thought, there cannot be freedom; the alternative to the city, or a federation of cities, was the despotically ruled empire (headed, if possible, by a deified ruler) or a condition approaching anarchy.... Only a society small enough to permit mutual trust is small enough to permit mutual responsibility or supervision--the supervision of actions or manners which is indispensable for a society concerned with the perfection of its members; in a very large city, in "Babylon," everyone can live more or less as he lists. (Natural Right and History, pp. 130-131.)

    What Strauss doesn't know is that this is a description of Sparta! And notice that here Leo Straus talks of a society, the need for society, mutual trust, mutual responsibility, the need for a small coherent group in order to reach perfection! Wow. That man does not "freely" chose the his moral perfection and that two man is not an individual, he needs a group!

    This quote is placed opposite of the liberal viewpoint of cosmpolitianism or one World Government. Here is the full post and a confession of an ex-liberal, and his old wish for cosmopolitianism: http://www.amnation.com/vfr/archives/016512.html The Liberal Vision of a fulfilled Society.

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