Bread and Circuses 

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Give them bread and Circuses and they will never revolt

[Juvenal]

So you come home from work and your absolutely wrecked, your shattered, your mind and body have given up, you’re drained of energy and the last thing you want to do is use your noodle. To over-exert that squishy organ in your head is too much, so you don’t do it.

So what do you do?

Netflix? (and probably chill for all you dirty dogs out there, wink wink). Maybe the football is on? A soap opera? Maybe something has caught your eye on Facebook or Snapchat or YouTube? The PS4 and XBOX are calling? Reality TV? This list is definitely not exhaustive…

We all at least do one of those things and it probably depends on certain demographics which one is used more, but the latent reason for using these methods of entertainment appears to be the amount of brain power required during each activity.

 It’s not saying that people who watch Game of Thrones or play Candy Crush are simpletons, but because it’s what is the easiest activity to so at that time. You may have had a shocking day at work, maybe the kids have you tortured, maybe your suffering from anxiety or depression, you could even just be bored, whatever the reason we do it is simply because it’s EASY. No one wants to break a sweat or concentrate hard when they have no energy left, only the proactive amongst us seem to be productive enough to ignore these basic distractions.

Now, here’s a thought, something I like to speculate on when I’m researching this topic: Is this a contrived situation that a group of people want for society? (By group of people I mean elites). Why would they want us with little energy and and with so little focus that any little distraction will do? I’m glad you asked…

I’ve come to understand in my life that there is a consolidation on wealth and power throughout the world by an elite, if it isn’t obvious to you by now, well you’ve probably been on Twitter complaining about Donald Trump too much. What this means is that the majority of material and informational resources are in the hands of a small cabal of elite families and business/bankimg partners who seek to use this position of theirs to take further control of what they don’t already have. The philosophy behind their desire for domination allows them to see human life as mere collateral and if it gets in their way well there’s too many of us anyway, a few million culled would do the world a favour, right?

As for the rest of us who are lucky enough to not be in the “Third World” or in the way of their plans, we better not poke our heads in, take the moral high ground and whistleblow on their illegal dealings otherwise we will be a very big unwanted thorn in their side and they don’t like big unwanted thorns in their side. Many people have fought against this as yet unnamed but very real threat to the future of our race (some prefer the Illuminati or the Committee of 300) and have not lived to tell the tale, just query into the death of President John F. Kennedy or weapons expert David Kelly for a just a snippet of what I mean.

Now while a few us may still be thorns, there is the huge bulk of us, especially in Europe, the United States, Canada and Australia (and any other developed nation who has the right to protest) who simply don’t care about the wider issues of society and civil duty is lost upon them. It’s exactly this stale apathetic climate amongst people in the developed world that allows our psychopathic oppressors to continue unimpeded. Something rings true about this in what Martin Luther King Jr. said but still isn’t being done enough: 

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Apathy is an awful state of mind, worse still when it is applied to a collective, it can be a powerful weapon, practically useful for the elite. If you instil apathy into society at large, no one will care what you do as long as their basic desires are met. One man who understood this was the 19th century French psychologist Gustav Le Bon, who pioneered the study into the dynamics of large groups of people and the psychology of the crowd. He was very aware of what can be done to sway the crowd in one direction or another like it was a hive mind. Just read this quote and judge for yourselves.

We see, then, that the disappearance of the conscious personality, the predominance of the unconscious personality, the turning by means of suggestion and contagion of feelings and ideas in an identical direction, the tendency to immediately transform the suggested ideas into acts; these, we see, are the principle characteristics of the individual forming part of the crowd. He is no longer himself, but an automaton who has ceased to be guided by his will

[Gustav Le Bon]

This is pretty much saying that “we have you all by the balls” by the elite, and much worse we don’t even know that we’re being directed en masse to their aims.  We are stripped of our individuality and as a result become hopelessly more impressionable, victims of our own instinctive nature, that is moulded by this group. Again let’s take a look at what he wrote: 

The masses have never thirsted after truth. Whoever can supply them with illusions is easily their master; whoever attempts to destroy their illusions is always their victim

What strikes me about this statement is it’s raw and utter truth. The masses (as he calls society) are like little children when they are herded together in large groups like cities or at sports games or music concerts; they are suggestible, gullible, naïve and most of all susceptible to powerful yet simple ideas. Crowds don’t think rationally, Le Bon observed, their affinity to relate to ideas through images are much more readily etched into their minds because of their quicker digestibility and their simplicity. Slogans are good example of this and can be made useful by charismatic leaders. 

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We are much further advanced in terms of technology these days than at the time Le Bon wrote these words, and I think it is reasonable to suggest that the private realm is affected far greater than has ever been done before by these methods. For example in the 19th century, the elite could only mobilise the masses only when in the public domain before the advent of t.v. and radio. Now we are saturated in social media and 24/7 television broadcasting to mould our collective unconscious so that we are directed by the powerful force of public opinion. 

Public opinion was successfully guided by public relations consultant Edward Bernays (Sigmund Freud’s double nephew) during the 20th century, so successfully he practically ended the taboo of women smokers singlehandedly in 1929, and this was done in the same manner as Gustav Le Bon had described his observations, particularly through the use of imagery.

The journalist Walter Lippmann, a strong influence on Edward Bernays, wrote a book called Public Opinion whereby he described the same observations as Le Bon but focused more on their application to the American society of his day.  One of his famous statements: “where all think alike, no one thinks very much” is the ultimate simplification of a what seems a very ancient idea; keep it simple and they will not cause you much trouble, which brings us back to Juvenal.

The Roman satirical poet was right when he said that giving the population bread and circuses means they won’t protest or revolt. Fill their stomachs and give them entertainment and what else matters? They won’t seek to question or reflect on their own lives, much less the wider concerns of civil society once you place smartphones in their hands, televisions and games consoles in their rooms; fast food, fashion, mass sports events in their cities; and make them work like mules so that all these pleasurable diversions are very much welcomed when they have no brain power left to question their own personal issues and the elite’s consistent attack on our our freedoms.

Use your noggin more guys, come on! 

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Life Doesn’t Have A Purpose

Wow!

“Steady on, you can’t be saying stuff like that, you’re going to scare people and cause them extreme discomfort! You’re going to shatter their reality, you’re going to plague them with an idea that doesn’t fit with their preconceived notions of their place in this world and cause them to panic! Stop now you lunatic! Of course it has a purpose!”

This was me when I first heard the idea proposed by the philosopher Alan Watts. Life has no purpose? Then what’s the point, why continue to exist? Why not just end it right now if there is no end goal. I feel like I’m singing of the hymn sheet of Albert Camus’ The Myth Of Sisyphus, if there’s no reason to live is suicide a rational decision? Maybe for some it is, they go so far into the abyss, they swim in the waters of absurdity for far too long and drown in the depths.

(I hasten to add that I am not advocating that a life with no purpose justifies causing chaos for the sake of causing chaos or for that matter committing suicide. In fact I’m going to argue quite the opposite; that no purpose actually enhances life’s value.)

The man himself: Alan Watts – (Credit: mixedmartialarts.com)

There is an enlightening experience to be had in demonstrating that life has no purpose, it lessens the strain we feel when our ego-consciousness (the person we believe ourselves to be) sets limits, goals and desires in our daily lives, thus confining us to the drab perpetuity of repetitive routine and that hollow feeling of disappointment when they are not met. The basic Buddhist interpretation of this argument claims that having these desires set us up for failure, that we will sometimes not achieve them or if we do we still desire more; desiring cannot go on forever as we live finite lives, therefore amplified desire causes amplified suffering because we can never fulfil them all in our lifetimes. In my opinion it’s never to say that we should not set ourselves goals or that we should never desire, but that we should be aware of how elusive they can be and how they can be a detriment to our inner well-being. We just cannot get lost in the illusions and entanglements of desire!

Desire leads to suffering, desire implies attachment – (Credit: realbuddhaquotes.com)

There are two major reasons I believe life has no purpose:

  1. Purposelessness is observable in nature
  2. Human art forms are purposeless

Purposelessness is Observable in Nature?

I know I will be accused of atheism here, like it some form of heretical creed, however despite not directly saying it is atheistic, it shares many propositions with it. For instance atheism claims that life has no purpose, it claims that there is no personal god, that there is no divine guidance of any form, etc. Where is differs with atheism is that reality is not just limited to this one lifetime, there is the possibility of having the experience of further sentient life in this universe or in other realities if they exist. Some atheists would draw the line here, but let’s continue.

Theists will see a purpose to nature, especially those, like Christians and Muslims who believe in a god who chose to create this universe and endow it with his ultimate meaning, i.e. that law is written on the heart, nature is the means for our ends, etc.

The basic theist/creationist argument is based on the analogy of the watch, whereby a stranger stumbles upon a watch and looking at it’s mechanisms concludes that it is too complex to have just sprung into existence; it then follows from this that humans too are far more complex to be random accidents of nature, ergo a creator is implied.

In refuting this argument, it wise to begin with the fact that we endow the world with our own meaning, both at a psychological and sociological level. For example we see apples as food and we also see apples as a commodity to sell in our interactions with other human beings, when without a human observer they are just a fruit. (Even labelling it a “fruit” is endowing it with our own label). We give nature a purpose because it serves aĺl our needs, it’s raw materials have allowed us to expand our species beyond the confines of primitive life to the complexity of civilization. But this does not imply a creator however easy it is attribute reality to it’s existence.

But does nature having meaning in itself even without the implication of god? One classic example is demonstrated by Alan Watts himself (see youtube video below) when he talks about how a scientist will explain the mating call of a bird. Surely that mating call is a mechanism in order for the birds to reproduce. But then Alan asks this hypothetical scientist, why mate? The scientist replies, to survive! To which Alan again replies, why survive? And this is the catch for most people, you can’t explain why we survive or what benefit living longer has for us without getting all metaphysical!

The birdies have a mating display, but does their survival imply a purpose? -(Credit: culturacientifica.com)

To elaborate on the purposelessness of survival Alan provides us with the concept of “quantitive continuity.” This explains our desire to continue living on indefinitely but logically speaking we wouldn’t really want to live forever either, it’s like an internal contradiction ready to consume us! What good is quantitive continuity only for you to suffer more, not only that but you would be detached further and further from your most distant great-grandchildren you would hardly call them family. 

As a simple solution he describes how nature, in it’s wonderful demonstration of intelligence wants us to live on in a different way, through our progeny. What better way to live forever than through your genes? It’s almost like you be had your go on the merry-go-round of life, let your children experience it now…after all you’d be quite dizzy staying on it too long!

In neo-Darwinian terms, populations propagate their genes through natural selection, which is a random process of gene mutation that allows certain phenotypes to survive in their environment compared to those who don’t have the mutation. Most biologists would believe that genetic evolution does not strive towards an end goal such as the perfectibility of a species, it just continues indefinitely. This is the distinction between Aristotle’s “Efficient” and “Final” causes. Most people would tend to believe that nature has a final cause or purpose woven into it’s fabric, something it drives towards and will eventually reach; this is a teleological approach, a final outcome is always implied, but this approach is widely denied by the scientific community today. Whereas an efficient cause is the entity prior to the effect, such as a father who begets a son or Leonardo Da Vinci who created the Mona Lisa; there is always a cause prior to an effect and this is the basis for general scientific inquiry today, not just in evolutionary biology. They don’t assume a final cause for evolution, they only study what the causes and effects of mutations are, makung further predictions as a result.

Aristotle’s four causes: his final cause is purpose-orientated but modern science and spirituality (in my opinion) are not teleological

(Credit: historeo.com)

If we follow this logic then, nature cannot be said to have been endowed with a “purpose.” Evolution is just nature’s way of combining and recombining genetic material in effort to survive. One can argue that survival is a purpose but what is the purpose of quantitive survival as Alan Watts asks, if you’re going to perish anyway? Nature is playing, ceaselessly finding new ways to exist and express itself, as such it shouldn’t be necessary to attribute it with a purpose, should it? I’ll leave that for you to decide…

Human Art is Purposeless?

Alan Watts referred to music and dance here as prime examples of art being purposeless. If you think about it, no one listens to music or plays an instrument with a purpose, we do it purely for aesthetic pleasure; it pleases the “soul.” We don’t aim to be the fastest composer, like we are in a competitive match up or dance and aim to land on a particular place on the floor, no, we engage in these activities because they are enjoyable. 

Their purpose, it could be argued is that they are enjoyed as art forms purely in and of themselves. Being creative for creative’s sake is a corollary of human self-expression and it doesn’t require a purpose, only that we share a desire to articulate the common existential mystery of the human condition and bask in its emotional depth.

“The Scream” by Edvard Munch. Painting is a purposeless act, the painter is delving into the chaotic depths of imagination and expressing themselves. This painting is perfect for this because to me it expresses the existential anxiety of life, the ailment that we seek purpose to alleviate – (Credit: legomenon.com)

The Value of No Purpose 

I always believed that there HAD to be a purpose in life, it’s no uncommon thing to believe otherwise. It seems to be an instinctive drive in humanity to be curious and curiousity entails what we expect to be an explanation and further, a purpose. Scientific inquiry is settled with an explanation, however existentially speaking we like to impose the “why” onto these explanations and speculations are abound. Just because we exist and that we are extremely complex organisms we must imply a meaning or a purpose.

But what if we didn’t have to? Does that mean life has to be abandoned? Of course it doesn’t. I think adding meaning and value to life is psychologically helpful and healthy for humanity, but this is to maintain our relationships in society so that we may advance and discover the nature of reality unencumbered by the anarchy that would occur if we didn’t endow the world with some sort of value system.

But in a metaphysical sense, I believe reality is an end in itself, not a means to an end. It is self-perpetuating system that seeks it’s own continuing self-discovery through its emanation in the physical universe from it’s infinite depths. It’s emanations are represented by all sentient things, as finite, limited, organised units capable of awareness and in humans, self-awareness. It builds these fantastic worlds, showers the world with its endless imagination and through humanity it plays around a bit and experiences itself from innumerable points of reference. 

There is only one mind and that mind can be equated to the universe in a pantheistic sense, with each individual a limited aspect; we are it and it is us!  – (Credit: quotefancy.com)

Some of these points of reference form cultures and social organisations that impose a worldview that narrows the relation humanity has to it’s infinite origin. These cultures perpetuate fear for so long that collectively, over aeons of time, we develop what I earlier referred to as an ego-consciousness, a profound awareness of our individuality that while beneficial comes at a high price. It created the concrete distinction between us and the outer world and we forgot our infinite natures; we develop an unhealthy fear of anything foreign to us, and that is essentially anything outside our own flesh or immediate social environment.

We also lose touch with nature itself in this way, feeling boxed into our minds, the exterior world is far too complex to grasp, as a result we attribute every colossal event of nature to divine providence or a vengeful god. This is a simplified history of religion, but it should make clear how we endowed the world with purpose at some stage in our evolution and even though we are perceived to be have been secularised to a certain degree, we still hold on to the metaphysical notion of purpose.

This is the God some of us still believe in: that paternalistic, warmonger who, like a totalitarian watches over your every move and you feel guilty because of it. All part of the increasingly unhealthy divide between man and nature – (Credit: imgur.com)

In the end we create our own meaning, our own purpose and ultimately we are the universe in limitless forms; creating, experimenting, playing, experiencing, loving, thinking, feeling, you name it, you are the universe, you can do it! We don’t need an ultimate purpose because there is no purpose and therefore we create our own purpose! 

Disclaimer: This is not advocating cultural and moral relativism either; I do believe that morals and values evolve with humanity and have a positive impact upon our trajectory into the future, becoming more lucid with further evolution. You could argue that there are moral absolutes, but I think there are moral ideals that become beneficiary to life’s continuance that become more “concrete” as time goes on, leaving wiggle room for more “grey area” issues that we still cannot solve yet, i.e. abortion, stem cell research, sexual intercourse before marriage, etc. You could argue that we discover ideals that correspond to our idea of absolutes, but that there is always more to discover on how we conduct ourselves on a moral level.

Until next time!


Alan Watts video:


Modern Feminism Is Not What You Think 

For a long period of my adult life I would have believed myself to have been a feminist, I would have proudly worn that title like a king wears his crown. Who doesn’t like jumping on the bandwagon fighting for the downtrodden and the abused, it’s like a fashionable trend these days, I only need to point you in the direction of KONY 2012 and the insurmountable number of “pray for” hashtags on Twitter. Feminism was one of those causes for me.

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“The fleeting cycle of people pretending to care”

Credit: onsizzle.com

So as part of my youthful hunger for activism, I needed to defend women from the evils of the dreaded patriarchy and cement my place as a proud male feminist. There was a gender gap everywhere in society and I had to bridge it with all my might, but there was also the probable subconscious element of impressing my female peers for something more than friendship

…oh Matthew you sly dog.

I was genuinely for the cause albeit very impressionable and somewhat gullible, but this was wholly due to the fact that I was massively uninformed. And it’s a hunch of mine that many self-titled feminists today are in the same boat I was in, only their boat is overcrowded and ready to plummet to the depths of historical villainy.

I say villainy because throughout my research over the past year the realisation that feminism is being used as a wedging tool between the two genders is becoming increasingly evident.  It has began to poison what is the natural compatibility between man and woman. Who the real game changers are behind this movement and why they edging for social change in this direction  is beyond my scope here. 

Many people believe it to be egalitarian despite its etymological origin in the root word for women: “fem”. It can be argued that the cause was initially solely for women, especially pertaining to the courageous activism of the suffragette movement which fought for equal civil rights which is clearly justified. However, in the present day the people’s use of the word seems to include men theoretically but exclude them in a practical sense, which does very little to back up their claim that they represent both. 

As a result of this research, I have two main concerns for the movement as it is today which I will briefly try to explain.

The Patriarchy

1) The patriarchy is a structural concept and men are it’s personification; thus their very essence of being a male is sometimes deemed oppressive. Thus feminism seeks to effiminate men and as a result strip them of their masculinity. I’ve seen many feminists allude to masculinity as “toxic” and something that needs to be undermined significantly.

The concept implicit bias is important here because feminism will discuss how patriarchal institutions in western society are biased towards men and against women, thus men are inherently biased toward women on an individual level also (even without knowing it). The implication with this theory, even if it is true, is that you still can’t blame the vast majority of men for their actions, especially if they’re bias is…IMPLICIT! They wouldn’t knowingly suppress but society makes sure they do undercover, so now there is a war on masculinity itself because it is the problem. Put simply, all men are sexist a priori or without their own knowledge…

 

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“Huh?”

Credit: knowyourmeme.com

 

Gender Roles

2) It is so hyper-focused on gender roles to the point that achievement by merit means nothing. Despite seeking gender equality in politics and civil services, etc. they never tend to fight for equality in less desirable jobs such as plumbing or construction.

 

The desirability of a job appears to be correlated significantly with one’s gender. Socialisation and biology are factors that play a mighty big role in determining gender, the latter more so than the former. So, as a woman you are the only sex that can birth a child, it therefore follows that socially you have the capacity to care for a child you have nurtured in utero for as long a period as nine months; this does not say all women are socially or psychologically capable of motherhood but it does suggest it on a broader level that they later capable of nurturing a child. You would then expect that women are generally speaking, more capable of careers or social roles pertaining to emotional support and care. Somehow even to suggest this is sexist, but biology and society are two very powerful forces in and of themselves. It doesn’t imply that we should not change a few of our ingrained primitive beliefs and backward cultural practices that serve only physical or psychologically damaging ends (female excision in Islamic societies, honour killings, extreme objectification of women when used as ends for marriages purposes or advertising),  it is just that the social reality is not as flexible as feminist (and other postmodernist writers) believe it is.

It’s not as ignorant as saying “you are woman therefore you must work in careers A, B, and C” but more specifically put “you were born and raised as a female, your biology and nurturing tend to lead you to work in careers A, B and C but you have the freedom to work in careers X, Y and Z” just as the opposite would be true for men. This kind of logic would get you slandered by many feminists because it’s not “equality,” but we’re talking about reality here, not equality. It’s not denying a woman’s right as a human being to do as she desires (equality on an individual level is self-evident), I just don’t think it’s very wise to challenge millions of years of biological and social evolution as radically as feminists can do. You can read into this as more stereotyping from another sexist, but stereotypes don’t acquire their reality out of nowhere, they always have some basis in reality otherwise we wouldn’t talk about them (despite their inaccuracies in some particular cases).

But from personal experience, I can’t remember seeing a male midwife but I don’t deny they exist. Nor, following from this do I see the feminist brigades marching in solidarity to the beat of gender equality for males wanting to work in this role. Or what about male nurses? Social workers? Counselors? Advertising? Childcare? Domestics? Information clerks?

Image result for male midwife

“Genuinely the first male midwives I’ve ever seen, unless I just don’t get out that much…”

Credit: Daily Telegraph

Taken from another perspective, I can’t recall seeing a female electrician, or a female waste management technician, or a female plumber, etc. etc. Yet where is this feminist outpouring of gender equality in these roles? It seems to be (as I mentioned earlier) the desirability of the job that is one of the major factors in determining a woman’s choice of career role. Some jobs tend to be more or less equal in terms of numbers per gender, mostly white collar roles such as office temps, sales assistants, catering etc. but where men dominate certain job roles that appeal to a small number of competitive women in the population like politics, sport, business, etc. feminists are screaming like banshees for there to be equality when these roles again seem to biologically and socially suited to men. Yet there is silence when men go to war or face extreme conditions in the workplace; there is not a solitary feminist fighting for a women’s rights to work with shit in a sewer or come home with PTSD and two legs missing from army service, and if there is a I would like to meet her (or him)

But it’s a man’s job isn’t it?

Image result for female sewage workers

“Gender equality in waste management! You go girls!”

Credit: Daily Mail

Can I once more reiterate that I’m not saying women are not capable of achieving high status roles in male dominated roles, it’s just a choice that women make. You can argue till your blue in the face that it’s do with the pseudo-construct called the patriarchy all day long, but at the end of the day it is a choice we have, albeit limited  to some extent by society and biology, but not oppressively as many believe it to be. Again, feminist focus should be primarily other parts of the world where women are being trafficked, raped, prostituted, mutilated and humiliated in degrees none of us could fathom. But it’s not a big deal is it, a man sexually harassed you by approaching you with the offer of a date or commented on your beauty or he “mansplained” against you, remember you’re the victim here.

Get your fucking priorities straight feminism!

 

 

 

The Appeal to Misanthropy 

Courtesy of stateofmind.com

It is easy these days to blame everything going wrong on humanity. We have slaughtered billions of our own kind throughout our history, never mind the destruction of our natural environment that provides for and sustains us. As technology has advanced these processes have only grown on an industrial scale and as a result our suffering accumulates exponentially.
The gap between rich and poor widens, the earth’s natural resources such oil, coal and gas deplete at a far faster rate than we can replace them, terrorist attacks are seemingly commonplace, conflict is abound within nations and between them, norms and values that once stood as pillars to maintaining societies across the West are being obliterated by extreme moral relativism, while practices such as gential mutilation, subjugation of women, honour killings, genocide, infanticide, etc. etc. are still widespread in what is supposedly a civilised age. 

You cannot help but imagine a world without this level of human intervention, how the world would flourish without these deplorable acts of savagery. This appears to be the opinion of a significant portion of society today, and not without justification. It seems entirely self-evident that human beings continue to be on the same destructive path toward extinction that they have always been on; that they deserve their fate and that it is wholly rational to believe so. 

I wish to examine this claim because, despite the overwhelming observations to the contrary, human beings are more than capable of turning this situation around. There is a rose to our many thorns because, in spite of all the destitition we are an abundantly creative species, capable of expressing the deepest empathy for ourselves and our fellow inhabitants of earth. And despite this potential, a defeatist attitude that still resonates with the generic misanthropist, one that is self-perpetuating because, if you believe humanity is a hopeless, ungrateful and sadistic species then you help spread that pessimism like a pandemic. That hopelessness then quickly metamorphoses into a misguided belief in fatalism; that nothing can be done and we should just accept it. This is a very dangerous belief indeed and translates very easily into the minds of the impressionable. It’s became the “trend” or “cool thing” to believe in. 

Courtesy of firstcovers.com

There is a persistent and perverse sense of misanthropy almost everywhere you go. I would speculate that it is more common in the Western Hemisphere where our technological advances far outstrip our social responsibilities when using this technology. For example, the speedy development of the Internet in the previous decade has opened up a vast array of social and legal conundrums that involve things such as privacy invasion and online black markets that we are nowhere near close to resolving. However, with our social development and sense of morality nowhere near it’s zenith (if there is one) I believe that the potential is still there in humanity to change and adapt to these bewildering and confusing times. Yet, the extreme pessimism our society exuberates is horrifying, and this concoction of pessimism and misanthropy is too much for the human soul to take. This darkened worldview of a collective self-hatred only helps so far as to continue to very our own extinction, so much so that it is fast becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. (You only have to understand that a sizeable portion of our race, with their faith in Christianity, willingly welcome an apocalyptic event to alleviate their guilt when faced with their creator).

Courtesy of SO4J.com

An argument that aptly reflects humanity’s self-hatred is preached by the environmentalist movements across the globe. Obviously there is every right to campaign against the destruction of nature insofar as it isn’t beneficial to our survival i.e. corporate monopolisation or weapons testing. However, despite the minority of human beings who make decisions to destroy our environment irreparably, many advocates of “green” movements and those who loosely associate with their ideals, act like humanity is a plague on the earth. They insist that if we weren’t here the environment would be as right as rain, we are only a virus that needs to be contained. But how are we to be contained?

The solutions that are proposed here are terrifying if the modern world allowed some deeply masochistic people to take the reigns of power. One solution, the idea of overpopulation, is a highly controversial topic of debate and one of it’s main premises is that there are too many of us on the planet and we are a constant drain on our limited resources. The earliest proponent of this theory was the Anglican parson Thomas Malthus and his ideas are still held in high regard today. They met their most sinister interpretation in the eugenics movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries that bluntly speaking, sought to weed out “inferiors” Some groups with elitist values in our society still espouse these ideas albeit hidden behind their facade of “philanthropy.” Some well meaning people however buy into their cheap emotional pleas to “save the planet” and regard the enemy as the masses…which ironically includes them, but obviously that doesn’t register.

So humans are the source of the problem, or more precisely, the masses, or “useless eaters”. These attitudes have been filtered into the education system and as a result public opinion, ironically like a virus (much like how humanity is described by the misanthropists). This process is systemic and everyone is affected by it, but some more than others. I don’t know how many friends and acquaintances I have spoken too who don’t espouse some kind of belief that humanity is a problem that needs dealt with, but it is enough to be concerning. One of my friends said he couldn’t wait till humanity was extinct so the earth could heal itself. There is also the modern depopulation propaganda message that without bees the world would die, without humans it would thrive even more than it does now. While the bee theory may be true, the same sentiment toward humanity is inherent.

Courtesy of AZ Quotes

(And I love Bill Hicks too…)

There is a logical fallacy at the crux of many environmentalist theories, especially the radical ideas. They persist that humans are like a virus, or at least are a cause for concern. What they don’t appear to mention is that humans (as far as we know) are native to the planet, it sustains us, it created us, but most importantly we are the earth. We seem to believe that we are this bag of skin that is separate from our environment despite the fact that we are as much as part of the environment as the sky and the seas. This argument should sway us to look after our habitat more carefully, instead it relentlessly drives many of us to believe we are like a fleshly tumour upon the earth that needs to be excised before we destroy it. Yes, you read it right, we are likened to a cancer, but this idea is watered down to friendly, “let’s save the planet” slogans that disguise our deeply ingrained self-hatred.

“Retards…retards everywhere”

Courtesy of unitedliberty.com

There are clearly unconscious, masochistic drives that manifest themselves in individuals that bring them to these attitudes, no matter how strong their beliefs are on humanity as a problem. 

 

Freedom of Speech: The War Against Your Expression of Thought

As a little one playing about the streets I remember quite clearly when someone said something nasty or hurtful they used to exclaim afterwards: it’s a free country, I can say what I want. Long ago are those days, and as much as I hated that saying I can’t help but wish it applied to adulthood in the present day. It’s increasingly commonplace now to see grown humans act like spoilt children if someone says something they disagree with and they immediately seek an apology like a crime has been committed. 

Freedom of speech to me was always say what you want as long as it’s not threatening or inciting violent behaviour. Words are just words, they can’t physically harm you, no one goes into the Oxford Dictionary to be beaten up by the word “fuck” or “cunt,” they are just vocal expressions that we use to describe reality in the most accurate manner we can. Words can express the most abhorrent ideas and create the most insidious of ideologies, yet on their own they cannot harm anyone unless, subjectively, a receiver chooses to allow them to cause emotional distress. Offence is subjective, it doesn’t send you into intensive care fighting for your life, so grow the hell up. 

Yet here we are in 2017, where the world of identity politics has gone absolutely maniacal. You put one foot wrong on twitter or publicly have an opinion against societal consensus and you are the equivalent of Hitler. (If I was Hitler I’d have to start with exterminating myself because apparently the Nazis believed red heads to be possessed, so there you go)

That’s so offensive! 

Such is the backlash of many progressive (regressive) advocacy groups and individuals, we begin to alienate ourselves sometimes for fear of social exclusion and worse, our actual physical safety. For the sake of simplicity, these groups largely seem to stem from the Left of the political spectrum, they have been poisoned by a toxic, radical transformation of the genuine liberal ideals they probably once stood for, culminating in aggressive and sometimes violent action as an effect of extreme emotionalism. This flies in the face of freedom of speech and their own valued principles as fascist tendencies overthrow what was once good intentions. 

The biggest assaults on our freedom of speech are embedded within social justice movements, advocacy groups that include including third-wave feminism,  multiculturalism and LGBTQ groups. All these groups have equality at their heart, and it doesn’t take much effort to realise that there is genuine cause for concern in the injustices they purport to be fighting, however, the pendulum for equality seems to be swinging towards an inverted inequality as these groups begin to radicalise. For example, feminist movements are fighting for abolition of the most mundane issues such as mansplaining, manspreading, cat-calling, etc. and they have become extremely vitriolic in their demonisation of masculinity, trying to cultivate a culture of strong independent women in need of no man but who need extra privileges, which contradicts the equality they fought hard to achieve. The hypocrisy knows no bounds. 

Credit: quickmeme.com 

These groups claim to believe in free speech, but like to demarcate it with hate speech. What counts as hate speech is another factor we need to include, because someone saying they hate gay people could be seen as hate speech when it is in fact just an opinion. At other times a person may target an individual specifically and incite hatred or constantly bully, this would be a clearer example of hate speech. Yet these groups have began to use hate speech as an umbrella term that could theoretically cover anything that hurts their poor little feelings

You might speak out against an Islamic cultural practice, but your Islamophobic and your speech needs to be censored, you are an enemy of multiculturalism and therefore diversity. You may disagree with transgenderism, now you’re a transphobic bigot. You could even point out that crime is at a disproportionately high rate in black American communities than in predominately white communities, but here you’d be an ignorant racist for reporting an observable fact.   

What goes hand in hand with all this “offensiveness” is a an intense, zealous plea to censor and ban certain words and phrases in the name of protecting a person’s feelings. Sentimentality is the name of the game now and you have to be careful not to tread on another person’s toes. But the problem persists in that everyone is offended by something, and when all this allowed to continue we’ll be permitted to say absolutely zilch; we’ll be stood round each other in silence, all our words banned, our language restricted, conversation sanitised, and what fun is that? I like a little debate, it’s exciting! 

The elite love this, they crave having us at odds with each other, they’re like a crack addict watching us impale one another under the name of “equality” and destroy ourselves in their grand social experiment.

The diversity of life is beautifully indescribable, each one of us has a unique existence that will contribute to this world in fascinating ways, it is expressed that way and that is nothing to be ashamed off. Yet, in the name of defending this diversity we are simultaneously homogenising it with ridiculous laws that will severely restrict our wholly expressive nature as human beings. Let’s do our part to never let this happen. 

Please comment and share, unless you disagree with me! Ha! Me and and my sarcasm…

Credit: steemit.com

The Story of Your Enslavement

I am an avid YouTube user, I love it for learning and gathering more knowledge in audio form rather than purely just from books. I do distract myself from time to time with songs and “try not to laugh” videos but who doesn’t? (FYI they are worth the watch!)

But cutting to the chase, I would like to discuss the content of one YouTube user many of you may know called Stefan Molyneux, described as an Irish-born Canadian “cyberphilosopher” on Wikipedia (a term which sounds class if I must say, it’s like Terminator meets Plato). 

Terminator photo by Michael Howard (Bemyapp Media) Plato photo by Lapham’s Quarterly. 

I don’t know much about the guy, but his accent and manner of speaking seem to be powerfully alluding, he comes across as very intelligent and charismatic and he has the determination to churn out video after video on his channel in quick succession. All in all he is a very interesting, hard-working man. 

The video I want to focus on here, I actually watched years ago without knowledge it was him, I have become acquainted with some of his other ideas only recently. The video is called The Story of Your Enslavement and it touches upon the topic of covert human slavery through the analogy of industrialised farming. I thought the wedding of the two ideas was succinct for describing the society we live in today. 

It is conveyed much like a dystopian novel, something 1984-esque, describing humans like they are animals that are there to be dominated and managed for their resourcefulness. He speaks of a very profound yet sinister idea that sets us aside from our animal cousins, one that drives us everyday but we like to repress it and that is the fear of death. 

Okay, you can torture and hurt an animal, it will feel pain, it will suffer and it will try to avoid the cause. In behaviourial psychology this is explained by reinforcement that it will learn to avoid pain, even in the future, because it now has a learnt pattern of behaviour deriving from a stimulus, this also applies to humans. 

But what happens if you kill an animal? In the moment yes, it will panic; its predicament at this time is one of fear and a realisation of its death but that’s it, it’s over. Humans on the other hand have a self-awareness beyond any other animal (that we know off) and as a result of this capacity we can project our fear of a future death into the present reality. It doesn’t matter how we die or when we die, the fact is that we know we WILL die. This knowledge of our finitude and the eventual cessation of our lives is enough to arouse very stessful reactions even if we are comfortable and safe in the present moment. 

Molyneux acknowledges that this fear of death is a useful control mechanism in the subjugation of their stock by the farmers. Resourcefully, we are worth more than they could have bargained. They can only get so much out of animals, but humans, they are now infinitely more controllable and valuable. 

The farmers are now getting “more for their money” than they ever have. Ancient farmers (Kings and Queens of empires) needed to put all their resources into the machinery for physical control and the output was profitable in that they maintained their control but not for long. Now, in the present, all they have to do is manipulate the human fear of death and voila, hey presto, you can get them to do almost ANYTHING! Fear of future suffering or death will provoke the best of us into irrational action, even if that means blind complicity. 

I believe this is the primary fear, one that exists alongside and reinforces the fear of psychological and physical torture, the fear of censorship, the fear of social exclusion etc. These fears are seen as threats to be used by our masters against our freedom and all at once they can be implemented in societies: Nazi Germany being the prime example in modern history. 

Threats, says Molyneux, are useless against animals, they have no sense of “future loss” of life or the concept of tomorrow

“You can’t get more eggs by threatening a hen, but you can get a man to give you his eggs by threatening him.”

This is what gives the human farmer an advantage in controlling his human livestock. (That phrase sends shivers up my spine, the image conjured up is that of the movie Daybreakers below). 

Photo by Wikipedia 

This whole human farming analogy isn’t far from what many researchers predict our society is in at the current moment and that we are steadily moving towards in the form of a one world government, a global human farm. 

If you think about it, most of us work in dead-end jobs we don’t want to be in, those of us who work in white collar jobs are penned in offices like livestock until we retire and are no longer useful to the state (farmer). Our eyes focused on screens and undetermined to fulfill our creative propensities because of hours of banal, repetitive administrative garbage. But hey, we all love some good old iron cage bureaucracy, it gets things done!

Photo by the Brain of Bryan

People say we have benefits of living in our society (farm). This is a point Molyneux hits on very well, but counters it by suggesting how there is not much difference between regular farm animals and us. They get fed a lot, they are watered, they are given heating and shelter much like we do in the form of social benefits from the state (farmer). They uphold us for as long as we are useful and then sacrifice us when our role is defunct. We are cramped in small areas in concrete jungles and left in squalor. Much like, you guessed it, farm animals! (We may have more freedom of movement than farm animals, but even that is restricted or at least discouraged.) 

Yet we are still content in our squalor, we still feed from inside the chicken coop, we still love our servitude (Aldous Huxley would be so proud), we still work like minions on a clockwork basis and in our free time we drug ourselves to remain blissfully unaware of this gruesome reality. We are just intelligent enough to be a useful cog but not intelligent enough to know we are expendable to the machine. This echoes what the great American comedian George Carlin once said:

By Daily Kos

In other more decrepit ways, we are like farm animals for the slaughter. Don’t pretend like the expenditure of blood and sacrifice of young lives in war is not a method of productive human farming akin to cattle butchery. There is no difference. Profit is still made on the massacre of millions.

Another analogy can be made in terms of milking an animal; they can drain us of many creative talents and ideas to better their own system, to make the farm more efficient. They employ some cows and some chickens to help build the infrastructure of their own farm and to keep all the other animals in line. God forbid if Daisy knew she’d been used for her milk and would be a cheeseburger tomorrow.

It might sound deeply depressing to describe our society in terms of something like intensive farming like Stefan Molyneux has done in his video, but you cannot escape the reality of the parallels he draws between the two. I’ll let you guys delve further…

(I still love the image of Plato as some kind of cyberphilosopher who protects John  Connor as his part-time job, oooooooh, it cracks me up!) 

You can find Stefan’s video via this link:


The Demonisation of Conspiracy Theory 

I’ve had a lot of stick in the past few years about being a conspiracy theorist, which is not surprising because I do purport to research into conspiracies, so I’ve only got myself to blame I guess. Yet, there is a social taboo with having a belief or supporting a conspiratorial view, and a very powerful one at that.

It only takes you to say “9/11 was an inside job” or “Big Pharma is destroying our health” or “JFK was murdered by the CIA” to invoke an hysterical tirade of your peers, keyboard warriors, and YouTubers lambasting you for every inch of your intellectual integrity. 

They have one major stick to beat conspiracy proponents with if logical, civil discussion does not go in the direction they hoped; condemn them with the conspiracy theorist label, that’ll sure show them. And what’s shocking is that this character assassination through labelling is ultra-effective. It can shut down an argument in seconds flat because why would you want to continue to debate with a paranoid, delusional, fact-avoiding, tinfoil-hat wearing lunatic?

By Sizzle (Facebook) 

Personally this attitude has been taken to great lengths when I’ve been discussing topics that have the aura of conspiracy. One person who proclaimed to be studying at the prestigious Oxford University in England, once offered to call me a psychiatrist because I told him I read a book by conspiracy theorist David Icke and supported some of his theories. SOME (before people pull the lizard card out). 

By DP Quiz Live 

I also told him I believe secret societies exist and that they must have some degree of control over social and political change if their members are scattered across the globe in various, influential public and private institutions. But no, he needed to add his friend to the Facebook chat to confirm with him that I needed help. So yeah, now I was convinced:

“It was at this point I knew I was suffering from mental health and all my beliefs were irrational, I needed two random students from London who know nothing about me to confirm this” is what I would have said if I was insane. 

But when all was said and done I took from this experience a very real concern that people will actually begin to believe that I’m psychologically unsound because of my beliefs. Up until this point I was happy enough to be criticised, that’s life, but to be categorised as mentally ill, that just took the biscuit. (And no one takes my biscuit if I can help it). 

This prompted me to go on a wee journey through the history of the term conspiracy theory to see the real reason behind its pejorative, popular use and why it such a powerful weapon of social control. 

I came across an article by an anonymous author under the pseudonym of “George Washington” on the ZeroHedge website: Here it was discussed how the term was originally coined in a dispatch by the CIA (this can be found online also) in April 1967 as a psychological warfare tool to discredit such theories that obviously were doing a lot of harm to the ruling elite of the day. Some of the methods of “countering” and “discrediting” included:

  1. Claim that it would be impossible for so many people would keep quiet about such a big conspiracy
  2. Claim that it’s irresponsible to speculate
  3. Accuse theorists of being wedded to and infatuated with their theories
  4. Accuse theorists of being politically motivated
  5. Accuse theorists of having financial interests in promoting conspiracy theories (1)

These are some of the hallmarks of defence mechanisms employed by the population when faced with conspiracy theories. It’s usually not what they know about the theories, but what they’ve been told about them that entails the character assassinations of conspiracy theorists. 

And I wouldn’t be surprised, in fact, I’m certain that poor mental health and conspiracy theory support/belief are inextricably linked in a method similar to those in the CIA dispatch. It would go something like “tell someone they are have a mental health issue if they propound such theories” and I can tell you it would and has worked a treat. 

In his postscript, the author writes that: 

The ridicule of all conspiracy theories is really just an attempt to diffuse criticism of the powerful

It immediately struck me just how similar this quote was with this popular philosopher’s well known quote: 

By Sizzle (Facebook) 

It is my belief that the powerful and influential elite need to keep a lot of their “web weaving” or covert social control under wraps. Any genuine attempt to expose these mechanisms and you’re a paranoid conspiracy theorist. 

Now of course, there is genuine reason to conflate conspiracy theorism with paranoia and delusion, as many individuals with diagnosed mental health conditions have been known to construct convulted fantasies of extreme complexity that simply aren’t true or have limited basis in truth.

These are usually based in the minds of those suffering from shizotypal personality disorder, schizophrenia, paranoia, etc. But are all conspiracy theorists mentally unstable? Does the amount of paranoid/schizophrenics equal the number of conspiracy theorists? This link is untenable, yet people seem to find solace in its value if they need to halt the “dangerousness” of a conspiracy nutcase; get out the stun-gun, the inmate has left the sanatorium again!

The dangerousness of a conspiracy theorist nut job has to be promoted extensively because the global elite of our world do not like us discussing dangerous ideas that could threaten their vested interests and monopoly on material, informational and social resources. Discrediting and countering these theories is of utmost importance to keep their ideal of progress in motion and their ideal of control firmly in tact. 

It is worthy here to mention that many conspiracy theories are entangled with mixtures of truth and misinformation, some with varying degrees of both. The saturation of information in our technological age spirals us into extreme depths of confusion and the nonsensical. We need to be wary of what is worth being aware of and what to avoid. 

I conceptualised terminology that may help with this but it’s very simple at the moment. So, we have two types of conspiracy theories in my my mind: 

  1. Essential 
  2. Non-essential 

Essential are those that have a profound effect on politics, society, individual rights, etc. Whereas non-essential are those that are trivial, in that there is no difference either way if they occurred or not. 

Examples of an essential conspiracy theory would be 9/11 or the influence of the Tavistock Institute on covert mind control, etc. Examples of the non-essential conspiracies are Elvis is Alive! Or Paul McCartney is a clone! They are usually the ones that are sensationalised and rubbed in the faces of those who are unfortunately more gullible. 

The problem persists here in that you can’t talk about 9/11 (essential) without being mingled in with supporters of the Elvis isn’t dead supporters club. You are a conspiracy theorist. Full stop. Stereotyping is helpful when trying to process our complex social environment, but not here when we need to be more specific to proceed on the path of logical discussion. 

But do the elite want us to have logical discussion and reasoned debates? The advent of political correctness in close parallel with complete denunciation of conspiracy theories as a whole is, I believe, slowly killing off our avenue to freedom.

I just need to find my tinfoil hat in the meantime…

Further Reading:

  • Conspiracy Theory in America by Lance deHaven Smith 
  • Phantom Self by David Icke 
  • Suspicious Minds by Rob Brotherton
  • Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures by Cass Sunstein & Adrian Vermeule (academic paper) 

References:

(1) http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-02-23/1967-he-cia-created-phrase-conspiracy-theorists-and-ways-attack-anyone-who-challenge

Join Me On An Adventure! 

Dear Reader

This is the start of a journey for me and you. Here, I can project the vast swathes of ideas swirling around in that big old head of mine into concrete form, whereas usually they’re just like mushy abstractions I can barely keep up with.

For you, it’s a chance to engage in conversation with me, tell me what you think, debate with me, agree with me, correct me, entice me (that sounded sexual in my head) stimulate this mind of mine and your own to the furthest depths we can. It’s a popular phrase, but the world is your oyster and I intend to help us explore it, inside and out. 

You’ll find me blubbering on a lot in detail about social issues, political events, spiritual and psychological theories, philosophical inquiry, conspiracies, maybe even some football because it is a game of life and death (or more than that according to Bill Shankly). So strap yourselves in, it will get more heated than a ginger with a temper! (Trust me I am one so I know).

I’m just a man seeking to understand what the hell this life is and what the hell is going on; I hope you will join me on my crazy adventure:) 

Take good care

Matthew 🙂