In keeping with my interest in writing something every day, I was going to post some fiction. However, perhaps I should bore you with that another time.
I want to share a thought. A thought and a link to something… let’s say semi-related.
In life we are to follow the rules (whatever they happen to be at the time), unless we are fighting for the rules… in which case there are no rules. This is similar to the idea that all is fair in love and war. With respect to war and civilization (thus far, man and wife), in vying for the ability to write history, dictate who is beneath you, write the rules of all subordinates… it does not reduce to a lack of rules in this realm. On the contrary, when a nation, an ideology, or a single man fights for his existence there is one rule to follow, the imperative of survival.
Here’s the link which I promised
It is ‘The Ultimate History Lesson: A Weekend with John Taylor Gatto’, a 5 hour, 5 parter which deals with the influence of certain persons and groups on the education system such that the efficacy of each is reduced for the greater working of the larger system.
Really, it’s about getting rid of skilled labor and making sure everyone is able to function within a factory, corporation, or system (to speak generally). It is troubling in the sense that we have fewer people who are enlightened, and at the same time it makes a certain amount of sense. Every parent wants their kid to be successful, however you cannot have ~7 billion entrepreneurial CEOs going about their lives on Earth. You must have a very small supply of thinkers and a relatively large group of doers… consumers… fodder even.
Now before you paint me as an apologist, hear this. In this aforementioned link it is said there is a difference between accepting an idea and entertaining it. I believe it is that latter which I am doing.
In short, the rule which the people of the world seem to follow in shaping it
- Follow the rules laid down by those with power (knowledge + violence).
- In the pursuit, or in defending the right to make these rules, there is no rule but that which demands victory.
Much evil could be done to justify the desired ends. And who sets the ends? Why, those with the monopoly on knowledge and violence. This does seem rather terrible. And as one who reaps the rewards from these means (young white upper middle-class male), there is something troubling (beyond the horrors of war and the like), namely the fact that the internet decentralizes information and the existing monopolies on violence seem to be ineffective at getting at the grass-roots resistance which is popping up all over the world. The worry here is that desperate people (even those high up) can be lead to make some pretty terrible actions and/or mistakes.
This is really the problem that humanity is facing in this post-information age… what do we do with the information? We’re really through the looking glass. How this works out in the end, I do not know.
This idea of sucking the brains out of the masses and keeping the knowledge of navigation with the captain and his aids seems as terrible to me as the idea of a philosopher king. Sometimes I imagine myself as such a king… but I always know in the back of my mind that I am not this, nor could I ever be so. I am too much tied to humanity, to the individual, to those beautiful moments and experiences that all people are entitled to. I’m digressing.
The cold calculation of a true philosopher king, I can understand, but pruning a tree so that it grows better is not the same as culling humans for the greater good. Similar, perhaps… but it’s not the same.
These primal rules which I have repeated aren’t the end-all, be-all of rules. I will talk of normative ethics, rules which I believe exist (as real as you or I exist), but I will do so another time. I just wanted to here outline the way which I believe the present rulers/influencers of the western world are operating by. And I don’t believe it is something nefarious or new, but rather it is a medley of long-term interests and continuity.
And I think what we can take away from this ‘win at any cost’ and ‘educate people for productive ends only’ is that the world really is changing… changing like it has not in a long time. A reevaluation of the worth of these means… even of our ends, I believe, will soon appear on the horizon as a new imperative.
Destroying ourselves would be so much simpler than taking this hint (just as the over eater knows when he/she wants to be healthy but succumbs to the ease and cheap pleasure of eating him/herself to death). But, as I outlined in a previous piece (and I will go over in a future piece), I truly believe it to be in the interest of the power elite to take heed to these changes. It’s better to go with the flow (and then to guide it) than to try and dam it up and have the whole apparatus come crashing down.
A lot said. Little achieved. Just another day.
Peace, love, and progress.