In this day and age we are inundated with information, this can only be a good thing, the more informed individuals are the better decisions they will be able to make, or so the theory goes. I think this theory leaves out two very important factors, those who are willfully ignorant and I think by and far the most important, distraction of dancing mice. The first factor is a matter of individual choice, I will not place an absolute value judgment but I will opine that I believe it is poor way to go through one’s life; blissful ignorance is like complacent slavery. Not to forget, the former leads to the latter. I believe it is more important to think about the distraction of the dancing mice, the willfully ignorant do not detract from the numbers who are thinking and informed the distracted, however are.
Traditionally people believe there is false information out there and that is all there is to be wary of, I personally disagree, I think there is also a lot of true information that individuals might as well ignore, especially if you are among the ranks of the well informed. False information does not last in the light of the skeptic’s lanterns; lies often fall away and are forgotten by well informed individuals, specifically because they question everything. What doesn’t fall away are things with a shred of truth, if there is a nugget of fact in a story however small or trivial it gives the notion of the whole story some sort of ontological validity. I think the adaptation of the human to this reality is the discriminating mind, being able to discern the important from the trivial, the vital from the dancing mice.
Let me please highlight some examples of what I am speaking of:
I have friends who are working in support of this project deeply, Pvt. Manning was arrested is being held and if he is not dead he will be severely traumatized if he is ever allowed his freedom again. I do not understand the infatuation with this young man, a great injustice has been done unto him but people are kidding themselves if they truly believe anything they are doing will improve his fate one iota. I will never suggest that people abandon Pvt. Manning; surely if he did what he is accused of he is a man of heroic stature. Though I will mention I do find it a bit peculiar that this man is still alive, that some terrible accident or terrorist car bombing did not befall him before he was “caught” is short of miraculous to say the least.
What he is doing through Wikileaks is an astounding effort, he is doing something the mass media has dropped the ball on for far too long, with that said, people are advertising every trivial piece of flair about this man. He is not releasing anything any truly informed individual is ignorant of, we all know the reality of the occupation of the Middle East was based on a sham, we all know the military is doing a smash up job of killing children. Now we are supposed to be benefitted by knowing the exact details regarding the government being a piece of shit in regard to other national representatives whose homelands we are not currently dropping bombs in the children thereof? Was this something we were uncertain of, are we being honest with ourselves? Individually are we truly enlightened to know the internal business of banks, we long admit are in the pocket of the aforementioned corrupt government, that are not on the up and up? Much like Manning, especially in the light that the DHS has taken down 70+ websites in the last (was it a week?) without any judicial approval, I am a little bit skeptical because Wikileaks still exists, that and Julian is still walking the Earth.
Another event everyone seems to be jumping on the bandwagon of is the TSA scanners and mass scale second base attempts, anyone who does not live under a rock knows the scanners are not reliably safe, there is a lot of dissenting opinion of their safety in the medical field, need I say more? Any idiot should be able to reason that getting a pat down when you are not in custody (that means under arrest) is a violation of your privacy and personal property. George Donnelly and his We Won’t Flycampaign is on the right track, but that is it, stop flying, boycott air travel all together, there is enough media buzz about this that one cannot honestly believe they will convince people who are about to go into a terminal to not get on that plane. I feel for Meg, subjectively she went through a shitty situation when all she wanted was to go home, but she is not the only one who has gone through this type of thing, surely she will not be the last. Much of the last decade I was getting felt up by TSA agents every time I was going to fly, maybe I should have cried, we could be that many years ahead on this one, or maybe we should just stop talking and start doing?
I have a personal bone to pick with this one, I mean FUCKING REALLY, who the hell is surprised? This is a particular point I severely disagree with Dr. Rothbard, engaging the system is a complete waste of fucking time, call your senators and congress people, it does not make a lick of difference. As we have seen in the 2010 cycle there was no overwhelming majority of government reducing candidates to choose from and did any of them make it into office, the answer is FUCK NO! Now what, the government is on the verge of making rain water collection illegal as well as having loose enough language in the bill to eliminate small farm competition on the food market and potentially personally grown food? Is anyone who is marginally informed about the government surprised, anyone who is not directly affected by this does not care, when they will feel the effects of higher food prices it will be too fucking late anyhow!
There are a plethora of other issues, baby Cheyenne, police brutality, the list is endless and I feel for all the people who suffer needlessly at the hands of the state they do not consent to, but at the same time I can’t help but imagine what strides could be taken if people would look at the situation and say, “Damn that’s Fucked Up!” and then move on to something more productive.
It is almost as if we are being set up to be lost to astonishment, no one who is in any shape or form truly informed has a doubt that tyrants kill, with sadistic glee, does it follow that when their panties are in a bunch, they are not killing people off because of it? What people are doing may be honorable but we have to look beyond that, and see that natural cause and effect is being violated. Maybe these people are allowed to live solely because it is advantageous to have the information distraction? It seems to me that this is more a seamless web of existence to someone trying to control a large population with an information addiction.
I know Ayn Rand is not so popular with many people, but I think there is a valuable lesson to be learned from her first novel We the Living, a depiction of life in Soviet Russia in the years following the Bolshevik Revolution.
One of the things she notes about communist life is that there is always some busy work to do, between clubs, organizations, party meetings that if you were not involved in, you were suspect to being a party traitor. The insight she makes of this is very relevant to the topic, it seems to her through her character personification Kira, that all the “volunteer” activities are really just a distraction to keep people from thinking. Maybe informed individuals too are given enough information rope to hang ourselves with, to keep us stagnant and there is obvious peer pressure to keep up to date with the latest state sponsored atrocities.
I know is it almost guaranteed that someone is going to say, “But Harry, they are providing the proof for the people who deny the truth, it is a valuable weapon for recruitment.” I have an answer for that, those who are willfully ignorant will remain as such and it is their will. This is not a fight for “hearts and minds” this is a fight for survival, time is short and getting shorter every day, is it wiser to try to enlighten someone who wishes to reject it or to begin working toward your own future? I also know someone will say, “It is not about my life but that of the children, I am sacrificing myself for them.” And I am calling bullshit on that as well. If there was no expectation for even a marginal improvement in one’s own life, there would be no logical point to keep doing this, as there is no guarantee that someone will pick up the torch after you and continue the job when you are dead. If the thought then goes to recruiting people, scroll your ass back to the top of this paragraph and read it again.
I do not mean to sound pessimistic, I do not mean to be rude, but at this point maybe we should not be wasting so much time being involved on spreading spread news, keeping up with the Jones’ on the amount of factoids we can cram into our heads. Maybe we should be looking to hone skills that will bring ourselves or prepare ourselves for the next level of the game. There is stagnation, it is the wall between theory and practice that many seem almost unwilling to scale and overcome, I am unsure if it is fear or that people do not believe the talk they are talking but one thing is certain, people are not doing very much.
Various efforts are showing things are not working, collecting in a specific area to effect the elections is obviously not, bringing messages to the masses is not, maybe doing things that do not work is not the way to go. In the words of my good friend Jim Davidson in an unrelated topic, “Do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.” at this point I can fairly ascertain much of what is being done is not working what so ever. What is getting a lot of lip service is agorism, but again I do not see much of that being done, maybe that is an indication of the tree bearing much fruit, maybe not, either way it is walking the walk rather than talking the talk. The Dancing Mice are all well and good I am sure the .0001% of the population enlightened by their presence is of some value but at this juncture we can either get busy living in their system or get cracking in a counter-economic system, the choice is yours.