Propaganda

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Intersectional Torturers

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 04/05/2021 - 10:02pm in

Listen to this article.

https://medium.com/media/4bd67b46882bd08ef4e6a3c3dc84d2aa/href

Social media was ablaze yesterday over a CIA recruiting video which you should definitely watch if you haven’t seen it already, because it has to be seen to be believed.

The video features a Latina CIA officer proudly describing her ascent to her position in one of the most depraved institutions that has ever existed using a jaw-dropping fountain of social justice buzzwords and appeals to Latin American culture while wearing a t-shirt featuring a girl power symbol and the caption “Mija, you are worth it.”

“I am a woman of color, I am a mom, I am a cisgender millennial who’s been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder,” she says. “I am intersectional, but my existence is not a box-checking exercise. I am a walking declaration. A woman whose inflection does not rise at the end of her sentences suggesting that a question has been asked.”

“I did not sneak into the CIA,” says the officer over inspirational-sounding music, adding, “At 36, I refuse to internalize misguided patriarchal ideas of what a woman can or should be.”

“Know your worth, command your space. Mija, you are worth it,” the video concludes.

“People in other parts of the world who make even modest efforts to ‘command their space’ often end up murdered by the CIA or its proxies,” someone commented under the video.

https://medium.com/media/cf00652179d4f3d60aa103cc5cde1f26/href

It’s honestly one of the most appalling things I’ve ever seen. To see ideas and values that are intended to protect and elevate disempowered members of the human community exploited to promote an immensely powerful government agency notorious for its down-punching assaults on those very populations is horrifying, to put it mildly.

This would after all be the same CIA that has inflicted many murderous and catastrophic interventions upon the world in general and Latin America in particular. The same lying, drug-running, warmongering, propagandizing, psychological terrorizing institution whose extensive use of torture has reportedly included “Rape, gang rape, rape using eels, snakes, or hard objects, and rape followed by murder; electric shock (‘the Bell Telephone Hour’) rendered by attaching wires to the genitals or other sensitive parts of the body, like the tongue; the ‘water treatment’; the ‘airplane’ in which the prisoner’s arms were tied behind the back, and the rope looped over a hook on the ceiling, suspending the prisoner in midair, after which he or she was beaten; beatings with rubber hoses and whips; the use of police dogs to maul prisoners.”

So it’s understandable that a video promoting this agency using language intended to uplift women, Latin Americans, and those struggling with mental illness has been met with widespread ridicule and mockery. Of course, it was only a matter of time before this outrage elevated the video to the attention of mainstream conservatives and it was turned into another vapid partisan issue.

“China and Russia are laughing their asses off watching CIA go full woke,” tweeted Donald Trump Jr. “‘Cisgender.’ ‘Intersectional.’ It’s like The Babylon Bee is handling CIA’s comms. If you think about it, wokeness is the kind of twisted PSYOP a spy agency would invent to destroy a country from the inside out.”

Yes Junior, the CIA is trying to destroy the very empire it exists to defend, using “wokeness”. Fucking moron.

“The CIA once had a mission against the Soviets, then Al Qaeda, but it is now a slothful, wasteful bureaucracy, overrun with politically correct slogans and militant mediocrity- as is the whole ‘intelligence community’,” tweeted radio host Buck Sexton.

Yeah the CIA was awesome when it was murdering and torturing Muslims and communists, but now it’s just a wasteful bureaucracy. Putz.

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To be clear, here are the things we learned from the CIA’s “I am intersectional” video:

  • The CIA has unbelievable audacity.
  • There is no value system the CIA won’t exploit.
  • The politics of identity are not in and of themselves enough to meaningfully challenge power.

Here are the things we did not learn from the CIA’s “I am intersectional” video:

  • Inclusiveness is bad.
  • Republicans are smart.

The video is significant because it shows an agency staffed entirely by sociopaths using extremely manipulative language to advance its predatory agendas, not because it vindicates your dopey ideology. It’s so dumb and depressing how everything real gets twisted and bogged down into fake partisan bullshit.

The CIA can use, has used, and will use any ideological position to advance its agendas. That’s what’s so creepy about the video: it’s a high-budget, in-your-face example of how predatory manipulators operate, and it sets off our predation alarms. It’s not because “woke bad”.

Sociopaths don’t use language like normal human beings; normal people use language for connection and communication, while sociopaths use it for manipulation and control. Seeing it laid out openly, with language toyed with in a way that is entirely divorced from human value, is shudder-inducing.

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Still, it is in some sense comforting to know that after all this time, after all that practice, after all that research into the mechanics of the human mind, and even with all its vast resources, the CIA can still make a sloppy propaganda video that is subject to viral disgust. They might be sociopaths, they might have an immense budget supplemented by their own covert drug trafficking programs, but at least the missing empathy centers in their brains sometimes make it difficult for them to understand normal human beings enough to manipulate them effectively.

It’s just so crazy that people still support this warped, perverse institution. It says so much about the power of Hollywood brainwashing, and about the power of denial. People just assume the CIA no longer does the profoundly evil things we know for a fact it has done in the past, and this assumption is based on literally nothing. It’s based on no factual evidence whatsoever. It’s believed because it is comfortable.

You can be sure that when the next revelation comes out about some unfathomably evil thing the CIA did in the past, people will say “Boy I’m sure glad it’s not like that anymore! Today’s CIA is intersectional!”

Inept sociopaths go to prison.

Mediocre sociopaths become cops.

Effective sociopaths become CEOs.

Clever sociopaths join the CIA.

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Intersectional Omnicide

Our weapons will be manufactured by corporations
that have pansexual CEOs and Muslim shareholders.

The bombers will be emblazoned with rainbow flags
and flown by empowered women of all colors
who will scream “YAAASSS QUEEN!” as the mushroom clouds arise.

The desert sand will turn to glass in the blasts,
and that glass will become a ceiling,
and that ceiling will be shattered
by a lesbian CIA Director.

People will be vaporized on the spot,
or watch their own bodies fall apart like sandcastles,
but they will never be misgendered.

We will march as equals,
white, black, Asian, indigenous,
and whatever miscellaneous extras we can find
(so long as they’re photogenic enough for Instagram),
arm-in-arm singing “Fight Song” in one voice
beneath a drone-filled sky
to the edge of extinction
where we will leap together
screaming “This is all Susan Sarandon’s fault!”
into the face of the abyss.

It won’t be pretty,
it won’t be wise,
but at least,
for one glorious flash,
we will get to feel like we really tried.

___________________________

___________________________

___________________________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, or throwing some money into my tip jar on Ko-fi, Patreon or Paypal. If you want to read more you can buy my books. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge. The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here.

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Silicon Valley Algorithm Manipulation Is The Only Thing Keeping Mainstream Media Alive

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 03/05/2021 - 10:26pm in

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https://medium.com/media/c344ac34638407263c1f23286b500259/href

The emergence of the internet was met with hope and enthusiasm by people who understood that the plutocrat-controlled mainstream media were manipulating public opinion to manufacture consent for the status quo. The democratization of information-sharing was going to give rise to a public consciousness that is emancipated from the domination of plutocratic narrative control, thereby opening up the possibility of revolutionary change to our society’s corrupt systems.

But it never happened. Internet use has become commonplace around the world and humanity is able to network and share information like never before, yet we remain firmly under the thumb of the same power structures we’ve been ruled by for generations, both politically and psychologically. Even the dominant media institutions are somehow still the same.

So what went wrong? Nobody’s buying newspapers anymore, and the audiences for television and radio are dwindling. How is it possible that those same imperialist oligarchic institutions are still controlling the way most people think about their world?

The answer is algorithm manipulation.

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Last month a very informative interview saw the CEO of YouTube, which is owned by Google, candidly discussing the way the platform uses algorithms to elevate mainstream news outlets and suppress independent content.

At the World Economic Forum’s 2021 Global Technology Governance Summit, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki told Atlantic CEO Nicholas Thompson that while the platform still allows arts and entertainment videos an equal shot at going viral and getting lots of views and subscribers, on important areas like news media it artificially elevates “authoritative sources”.

“What we’ve done is really fine-tune our algorithms to be able to make sure that we are still giving the new creators the ability to be found when it comes to music or humor or something funny,” Wojcicki said. “But when we’re dealing with sensitive areas, we really need to take a different approach.”

Wojcicki said in addition to banning content deemed harmful, YouTube has also created a category labeled “borderline content” which it algorithmically de-boosts so that it won’t show up as a recommended video to viewers who are interested in that topic:

“When we deal with information, we want to make sure that the sources that we’re recommending are authoritative news, medical science, et cetera. And we also have created a category of more borderline content where sometimes we’ll see people looking at content that’s lower quality and borderline. And so we want to be careful about not over-recommending that. So that’s a content that stays on the platform but is not something that we’re going to recommend. And so our algorithms have definitely evolved in terms of handling all these different content types.”

https://medium.com/media/8093c4c66ce665482bd09d97ae4343c2/href

Progressive commentator Kyle Kulinski has a good video out reacting to Wojcicki’s comments, saying he believes his (entirely harmless) channel has been grouped in the “borderline” category because his views and new subscribers suddenly took a dramatic and inexplicable plunge. Kulinski reports that overnight he went from getting tens of thousands of new subscriptions per month to maybe a thousand.

“People went to YouTube to escape the mainstream nonsense that they see on cable news and on TV, and now YouTube just wants to become cable news and TV,” Kulinski says. “People are coming here to escape that and you’re gonna force-feed them the stuff they’re escaping like CNN and MSNBC and Fox News.”

It is not terribly surprising to hear Susan Wojcicki admit to elevating the media of the oligarchic empire to the CEO of a neoconservative publication at the World Economic Forum. She comes from the same elite empire management background as all the empire managers who’ve been placed in charge of mainstream media outlets by their plutocratic owners, having gone to Harvard after being literally raised on the campus of Stanford University as a child. Her sister Anne is the founder of the genetic-testing company 23andMe and was married to Google co-founder Sergey Brin.

Google itself also uses algorithms to artificially boost empire media in its searches. In 2017 World Socialist Website (WSWS) began documenting the fact that it, along with other leftist and antiwar outlets, had suddenly experienced a dramatic drop in traffic from Google searches. In 2019 the Wall Street Journal confirmed WSWS claims, reporting that “Despite publicly denying doing so, Google keeps blacklists to remove certain sites or prevent others from surfacing in certain types of results.” In 2020 the CEO of Google’s parent company Alphabet admitted to censoring WSWS at a Senate hearing in response to one senator’s suggestion that Google only censors right wing content.

Google, for the record, has been financially intertwined with US intelligence agencies since its very inception when it received research grants from the CIA and NSA. It pours massive amounts of money into federal lobbying and DC think tanks, has a cozy relationship with the NSA, and has been a military-intelligence contractor from the beginning.

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Then you’ve got Facebook, where a third of Americans regularly get their news. Facebook is a bit less evasive about its status quo-enforcing censorship practices, openly enlisting the government-and-plutocrat-funded imperialist narrative management firm The Atlantic Council to help it determine what content to censor and what to boost. Facebook has stated that if its “fact checkers” like The Atlantic Council deem a page or domain guilty of spreading false information, it will “dramatically reduce the distribution of all of their Page-level or domain-level content on Facebook.”

All the algorithm stacking by the dominant news distribution giants Google and Facebook also ensures that mainstream platforms and reporters will have far more followers than indie media on platforms like Twitter, since an article that has been artificially amplified will receive far more views and therefore far more clicks on their social media information. Mass media employees tend to clique up and amplify each other on Twitter, further exacerbating the divide. Meanwhile left and antiwar voices, including myself, have been complaining for years that Twitter artificially throttles their follower count.

If not for these deliberate acts of sabotage and manipulation by Silicon Valley megacorporations, the mainstream media which have deceived us into war after war and which manufacture consent for an oppressive status quo would have been replaced by independent media years ago. These tech giants are the life support system of corporate media propaganda.

__________________________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, or throwing some money into my tip jar on Ko-fi, Patreon or Paypal. If you want to read more you can buy my books. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge. The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here.

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The Criminalization of Dissent

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 03/05/2021 - 10:13pm in

One of the hallmarks of totalitarian systems is the criminalization of dissent. Not just the stigmatization of dissent or the demonization of dissent, but the formal criminalization of dissent, and any other type of opposition to the official ideology of the totalitarian system. Global capitalism has been inching its way toward this step for quite some time, and now, apparently, it is ready to take it.

Germany has been leading the way. For over a year, anyone questioning or protesting the “Covid emergency measures” or the official Covid-19 narrative has been demonized by the government and the media, and, sadly, but not completely unexpectedly, the majority of the German public. And now such dissent is officially “extremism.”

Yes, that’s right, in “New Normal” Germany, if you dissent from the official state ideology, you are now officially a dangerous “extremist.” The German Intelligence agency (the “BfV”) has even invented a new category of “extremists” in order to allow themselves to legally monitor anyone suspected of being “anti-democratic and/or delegitimizing the state in a way that endangers security,” like … you know, non-violently protesting, or speaking out against, or criticizing, or satirizing, the so-called “New Normal.”

Naturally, I’m a little worried, as I have engaged in most of these “extremist” activities. My thoughtcrimes are just sitting there on the Internet waiting to be scrutinized by the BfV. They’re probably Google-translating this column right now, compiling a list of all the people reading it, and their Facebook friends and Twitter followers, and professional associates, and family members, and anyone any of the aforementioned people have potentially met with, or casually mentioned, who might have engaged in similar thoughtcrimes.

You probably think I’m joking, don’t you? I’m not joking. Not even slightly. The Federal Office for Protection of the Constitution (“Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz”) is actively monitoring anyone questioning or challenging the official “New Normal” ideology … the “Covid Deniers,” the “conspiracy theorists,” the “anti-vaxxers,” the dreaded “Querdenkers” (i.e., people who “think outside the box”), and anyone else they feel like monitoring who has refused to join the Covidian Cult. We’re now official enemies of the state, no different than any other “terrorists” … or, OK, technically, a little different.

As The New York Times reported last week (German Intelligence Puts Coronavirus Deniers Under Surveillance), “the danger from coronavirus deniers and conspiracy theorists does not fit the mold posed by the usual politically driven groups, including those on the far left and right, or by Islamic extremists.” Still, according to the German Interior Ministry, we diabolical “Covid deniers,” “conspiracy theorists,” and “anti-vaxxers” have “targeted the state itself, its leaders, businesses, the press, and globalism,” and have “attacked police officers” and “defied civil authorities.”

Moreover, back in August of 2020, in a dress rehearsal for the “Storming of the Capitol,” “Covid-denying” insurrectionists “scaled the steps of Parliament” (i.e., the Reichstag). Naturally, The Times neglects to mention that this so-called “Storming of the Reichstag” was performed by a small sub-group of protesters to whom the German authorities had granted a permit to assemble (apart from the main demonstration, which was massive and completely peaceful) on the steps of the Reichstag, which the German police had, for some reason, left totally unguarded. In light of the background of the person the German authorities issued this “Steps-of-the-Reichstag” protest permit to — a known former-NPD functionary, in other words, a neo-Nazi — well, the whole thing seemed a bit questionable to me … but what do I know? I’m just a “conspiracy theorist.”

According to Al Jazeera, the German Interior Ministry explained that these querdenking “extremists encourage supporters to ignore official orders and challenge the state monopoly on the use of force.” Seriously, can you imagine anything more dangerous? Mindlessly following orders and complying with the state’s monopoly on the use of force are the very cornerstones of modern democracy … or some sort of political system, anyway.

But, see, there I go, again “being anti-democratic” and “delegitimizing the state,” not to mention “relativizing the Holocaust” (also a criminal offense in Germany) by comparing one totalitarian system to another, as I have done repeatedly on social media, and in a column I published in November of 2020, when the parliament passed the “Infection Protection Act,” which bears no comparison whatsoever to the “Enabling Act of 1933.”

This isn’t just a German story, of course. As I reported in a column in February, The “New Normal” War on Domestic Terror is a global war, and it’s just getting started. According to a Department of Homeland SecurityNational Terrorism Advisory System Bulletin(and the “liberal” corporate-media propaganda machine), “democracy” remains under imminent threat from these “ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority” and other such “grievances fueled by false narratives” including “anger over Covid-19 restrictions.”

These Covid-denying “violent extremists” have apparently joined forces with the “white-supremacist, Russia-backed, Trump-loving “Putin-Nazis” that terrorized “democracy” for the past four years, and almost overthrew the US government by sauntering around inside the US Capitol Building without permission, scuffling with police, attacking furniture, and generally acting rude and unruly. No, they didn’t actually kill anyone, as the corporate media all reported they did, but trespassing in a government building and putting your feet up on politicians’ desks is pretty much exactly the same as “terrorism.”

Or whatever. It’s not like the truth actually matters, not when you are whipping up mass hysteria over imaginary “Russian assets,” “white-supremacist militias,” “Covid-denying extremists,” “anti-vax terrorists,” and “apocalyptic plagues.” When you’re rolling out a new official ideology — a pathologized-totalitarian ideology — and criminalizing all dissent, the point is not to appear to be factual. The point is just to terrorize the shit out of people.

As Hermann Goering famously explained regarding how to lead a country to war (and the principle holds true for any big transition, like the one we are experiencing currently):

“[T]he people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.”

Go back and read those quotes from the German Interior Ministry and the DHS again slowly. The message they are sending is unmistakeably clear. It might not seem all that new, but it is. Yes, they have been telling us “we are being attacked” and denouncing critics, protesters, and dissidents for twenty years (i.e., since the War on Terror was launched in 2001, and for the last four years in their War on Populism), but this is a whole new level of it … a fusion of official narratives and their respective official enemies into a singular, aggregate official narrative in which dissent will no longer be permitted.

Instead, it will be criminalized, or it will be pathologized.

Seriously, go back and read those quotes again. Global capitalist governments and their corporate media mouthpieces are telling us, in no uncertain terms, that “objection to their authority” will no longer be tolerated, nor will dissent from their official narratives. Such dissent will be deemed “dangerous” and above all “false.” It will not be engaged with or rationally debated. It will be erased from public view. There will be an inviolable, official “reality.” Any deviation from official “reality” or defiance of the “civil authorities” will be labelled “extremism,” and dealt with accordingly.

This is the essence of totalitarianism, the establishment of an inviolable official ideology and the criminalization of dissent. And that is what is happening, right now. A new official ideology is being established. Not a state ideology. A global ideology. The “New Normal” is that official ideology. Technically, it is an official post-ideology, an official “reality,” an axiomatic “fact,” which only “criminals” and “psychopaths” would deny.

I’ll be digging deeper into “New Normal” ideology and “pathologized totalitarianism” in my future columns, and … sorry, they probably won’t be very funny. For now I’ll leave you with two more quotes. The emphasis is mine, as ever.

Here’s California State Senator Richard Pan, author of an op-ed in the Washington Post: “Anti-vax extremism is akin to domestic terrorism,” quoted in the Los Angeles Times:

“These extremists have not yet been held accountable, so they continue to escalate violence against the body public … We must now summon the political will to demand that domestic terrorists face consequences for their words and actions. Our democracy and our lives depend on it … They’ve been building alliances with white supremacists, conspiracy theorists and [others] on the far right …”

And here’s Peter Hotez in Nature magazine:

“The United Nations and the highest levels of governments must take direct, even confrontational, approaches with Russia, and move to dismantle anti-vaccine groups in the United States. Efforts must expand into the realm of cyber security, law enforcement, public education and international relations. A high-level inter-agency task force reporting to the UN secretary-general could assess the full impact of anti-vaccine aggression, and propose tough, balanced measures. The task force should include experts who have tackled complex global threats such as terrorism, cyber attacks and nuclear armament, because anti-science is now approaching similar levels of peril. It is becoming increasingly clear that advancing immunization requires a counter-offensive.”

We’ll be hearing a lot more rhetoric like this as this new, more totalitarian structure of global capitalism gradually develops … probably a good idea to listen carefully, and assume the New Normals mean exactly what they say.

#

CJ Hopkins
May 3, 2021
Photo: 1918 flu pandemic

DISCLAIMER: DISCLAIMER: The preceding essay is entirely the work of our in-house satirist and self-appointed political pundit, CJ Hopkins, and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Consent Factory, Inc., its staff, or any of its agents, subsidiaries, or assigns. If, for whatever inexplicable reason, you appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to support it, please go to his Substack page, or his Patreon page, or send your contribution to his PayPal account, so that maybe he’ll stop coming around our offices trying to hit our staff up for money. Alternatively, you could purchase his satirical dystopian sci-fi novel, Zone 23, or Volume I and II of his Consent Factory Essays, or any of his subversive stage plays, which won some awards in Great Britain and Australia. If you do not appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to write him an abusive email, feel free to contact him directly.

The West Goes Insane Over Ukraine

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 30/04/2021 - 3:01pm in

The deflationary gap & death spirals In the penultimate chapter of his book, Grand Deception, Alex Krainer refers to a phenomenon known as the ‘deflationary gap’. Despite the fact that the deflationary gap led to the tragedy of two world wars, and is usually the pretext to wars in general, very little has been written […]

The post The West Goes Insane Over Ukraine appeared first on Renegade Inc.

The West Goes Insane Over Ukraine

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 30/04/2021 - 3:01pm in

The deflationary gap & death spirals In the penultimate chapter of his book, Grand Deception, Alex Krainer refers to a phenomenon known as the ‘deflationary gap’. Despite the fact that the deflationary gap led to the tragedy of two world wars, and is usually the pretext to wars in general, very little has been written […]

The post The West Goes Insane Over Ukraine appeared first on Renegade Inc.

Reject Mainstream Culture: Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Wed, 28/04/2021 - 10:03pm in

Listen to this article:

https://medium.com/media/1a0e8ee2821e32020a1dbb61f5ca3b32/href

Hey remember when we learned that the CIA unilaterally funds its own clandestine operations via drug trafficking without the permission or oversight of any elected body and then everyone went “meh” and forgot about it?

It’s strange how many westerners who grew up watching Star Wars still side with the evil empire on every foreign conflict.

A foreign policy perspective which does not begin with and account for the fact that the US government is the most powerful and destructive force on earth, and that its behaviors are aggressive instead of defensive in nature, is a foreign policy perspective based on fantasy.

People tell me, “You just hate America!”

I don’t even know what this means. What specifically is it that I hate? The people? The dirt the country is built on? Or is it possible that my actual target is the most powerful and destructive government in the world and the oligarchy which runs it?

“I hate the USA” is as nonsensical a statement as “I love the USA”; the land that label points to is so vast and its people so diverse that nobody can have any emotional relationship with it. Beyond that it’s a just collection of conceptual constructs which exist only in our imagination.

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Americans: Help!

Republicans: Fuck you.

Democrats: We need to come together and have a conversation about the help you need because these things take time and there’s a process and really it’s not just about the what it’s also about the how and the how sometimes gets lost in the what of the how of the how what how…

“The Oscars” is a big fancy party where vapid airheads who’ve profited immensely from the status quo give each other trophies for making movies which reassure everyone that the US empire is awesome and capitalism is totally working.

It’s not just mainstream politics and mainstream news media, it’s the entirety of mainstream culture: all its movies, books, music, values systems, ideals. It’s all inseparably intertwined with the sick status quo we now find ourselves in and the manufactured worldviews which consent to it.

Teenagers understand this better than adults. There’s an intuitive rejection of mainstream culture; it feels weird and dissonant. Adults make fun of them for it — “Ooh, it’s not ‘alternative’ enough for you?” — but that rejection is arising from a very healthy impulse. Mainstream culture should be rejected, because it’s what got us into this mess. It’s sick. The instinct to reject it is as healthy as the immune system’s instinct to attack a pathogen.

Every part of this tweet is hilarious:

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The more you read it, the funnier it gets.

The US Coast Guard is where now? On the other side of the planet from any US coast? And they’re being “harassed”, are they? Oh, by the Persians? Where are the Persians harassing them? Oh? In the Persian Gulf? The US Coast Guard is being harassed in the Persian Gulf, by Persians?

This is like saying “Burglar Harassed In Living Room By House Occupants”.

Our media are so truthful and objective that they always take care to give us all the different perspectives from the full range of political opinion: both liberal corporate warmongers and conservative corporate warmongers.

Telling the mainstream media to do their job and report the news truthfully is like walking into a shoe factory and telling them to do their job and make dentures. It isn’t the mass media’s job to tell the truth, it’s their job to administer propaganda. And they do a great job.

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It sure was nice, that brief window between the fall of the Soviet Union and the rise of China where westerners temporarily paused their hysterical shrieking about communism.

When people object to criticisms of the US-centralized empire, it isn’t because those criticisms are unfounded. It’s because if those criticisms are valid, it will mean everything they believe about the world is wrong. It would be a kind of death for them, and people fear death. Because perception is reality, finding out that your entire worldview is wrong is experientially the same as losing your entire world. Losing your entire world, your belief systems, your knowing, your understanding and all the stability it gives you, is like experiencing death.

That’s why we’ve got whole cognitive defense systems in place designed to keep information that is incongruous with our worldview out of our heads. We protect our worldview like we’re protecting our own identity, because, in a very real sense, we are.

It’s funny how of all the many desires people have, the desire for their own minds to be purged of illusion barely features. Some want for themselves, some want for others, but hardly anyone even considers the possibility that the mind which forms those wants could be deluded.

If people just put the desire for freedom from delusion above all other desires, the other desires would quickly fall into their proper place.

_______________________________________

I’m celebrating the hardback release of Woke: A Field Guide For Utopia Preppers by making a pay-as-you-feel PDF available.

The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, or throwing some money into my tip jar on Ko-fi, Patreon or Paypal. If you want to read more you can buy my books. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge.

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Feature image via Pxhere.

The Mass Media Will Never Regain The Public’s Trust

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 26/04/2021 - 10:04pm in

Listen to this article:

https://medium.com/media/684a936ad9b5eaaea2ff3d6ad1af2240/href

This year has marked the first time ever that trust in news media dropped below fifty percent in the United States, continuing a trend of decline that’s been ongoing for years.

Mass media punditry is divided on where to assign the blame for the plummet in public opinion of their work, with some blaming it on Russia and others blaming it on Donald Trump. Others, like a recent Forbes article titled “Restoring Public Trust In Technology And Media Is Infrastructure Investment” blame it on the internet. Still others, like a Washington Post article earlier this month titled “Bad news for journalists: The public doesn’t share our values” blame it on the people themselves.

The one thing they all seem to agree on is that it’s definitely not because the billionaire-controlled media are propaganda outlets which manipulate us constantly in conjunction with sociopathic government agencies to protect the oligarchic, imperialist status quo upon which the members of the billionaire class have built their respective kingdoms. It cannot possibly be because people sense that they are being lied to and are fed up with it.

https://medium.com/media/2ee9b5dd931d64a9c4f30922ecbfdf7d/href

And actually it doesn’t ultimately matter what mainstream pundits and reporters believe is the cause of the public’s growing disgust with them, because there’s nothing they can do to fix it anyway. The mass media will never regain the public’s trust.

They’ll never regain the public’s trust for a couple of reasons, the first of which is because they’ll never be able to become trustworthy. At no point will the mass media ever begin wowing the public with its journalistic integrity and causing people to re-evaluate their opinion of mainstream news reporters. At no point will people’s disdain for these outlets ever cease to be reinforced and confirmed by the manipulative and deceitful behaviors which caused that disdain in the first place.

A propaganda outlet will never be anything other than a propaganda outlet. A lot of half-awake people with one eye open and one eye closed will notice how the news media don’t practice journalism and don’t report the facts, and they’ll assume that something went wrong at some point. “Just do your jobs and report the news!” they’ll shout in frustration.

But nothing has gone wrong, and they are doing their jobs. They are doing their jobs extremely well.

Telling the mass media to “just do their jobs” and report the news is like bursting into a shoe factory yelling “Just do your jobs and start manufacturing dentures!” Their job is not to report the news, their job is to manipulate public perception for the benefit of the media-owning class. And toward that end they’ve been immensely successful.

There’s no point admonishing the mainstream press for the public’s plummeting trust in it, because a thing that has only ever existed to administer propaganda can’t suddenly become journalism. It’s like yelling at a rock for not being a tree.

The mass media are completely and utterly irredeemable, and always have been. It’s a waste of energy to try and get plutocratic propaganda institutions to suddenly begin doing journalism; that’s not what they’re for. Instead, our energy is better spent teaching people to stop seeing them as journalistic outlets.

https://medium.com/media/6a3d652e1428a50cd33220c458da890c/href

The other reason the mass media will never regain the public’s trust is that humanity’s relationship with narrative is evolving too far beyond the level that once saw Americans gathered around the television listening with Bambi-eyed faith to the words of Walter Cronkite. That level of widespread blind credulity in the official stories of the day will never again exist.

Our old relationship with narrative is crumbling, and people’s old ways of understanding what’s going on in the world just aren’t holding together anymore.

As cold war tensions with Russia and China continue to mount while the US-centralized empire fights with increasing desperation to retain its dominance, we’re seeing propaganda hit white noise saturation levels to such an extent that we’ll likely soon find out how aggressively the collective consciousness can be pummelled with mass-scale psyops before it snaps.

America just went through four years with a president whose words had no relationship with facts or reality, and who made no attempt to pretend otherwise.

The mainstream public is becoming increasingly aware of the widespread nature of disinformation and propaganda.

Deepfake technology means we soon won’t even be able to trust video anymore.

Ordinary people are hurting financially while Wall Street is booming, a glaring plot hole in the story of the economy that’s only getting more pronounced.

There are numerous different narratives about Covid-19 and the government responses to it running parallel to each other with everyone still to this day absolutely certain that their position is the only correct one.

The entire media class is acting stranger and stranger, now routinely reporting bogus stories en masse like the Russian collusion narrative or the “Bountygate” narrative and then simply acting like it’s no big deal when those stories they’d fed us with such urgency are completely discredited.

Now we’re even seeing headlines about UFOs in esteemed mainstream publications, not just once but regularly, which would have been unthinkable a few years ago.

You can’t twist and shove the collective consciousness around like that without something snapping. Without people beginning to look at the thoughts in their heads with suspicion and beginning to question their sense of reality. Without people wondering if everything they believe is a lie.

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We’ve been seeing signs that humanity is moving into a new relationship with narrative for some time now as people learn across all sectors of society that so many of the seemingly solid rules we once took so seriously are just empty thought fluff that we are free to rewrite at any time.

Atheism and secularism, once fringe positions, are now mainstream as people have discovered that they don’t need to allow their lives to be controlled by words written by long-dead men in far off lands from cultural and historical contexts which have no relevance to our own circumstances.

People are beginning to recognize that money is made up and we can collectively change the rules of how it works whenever we want, with the rising popularity of both socialism and cryptocurrencies capturing the public imagination of what’s possible.

People are beginning to understand that what we call gender is a large network of conceptual constructs which we have overlaid upon human anatomy, and that we are free to disregard and re-author those conceptual constructs if that feels right to us.

People are beginning to understand that romantic relationships don’t need to look the way they’ve been modeled for us across the centuries, with unmarried, same-sex, polyamorous, or other relationship models also being perfectly acceptable options.

People are beginning to understand that “family” doesn’t need to refer to people to whom we are related by blood, with the concept of chosen family gaining in popularity.

People are beginning to understand that the failed drug war is an immoral abuse and that we should be allowed to experiment with our own consciousness using whatever substances we see fit.

These are all signs of a growing awareness that the “How It Is” narratives we’ve been fed by culture do not have the concrete reality to them that we once assumed they did. We’re beginning to see them as what they are: stories. Stories that we are free to ignore or re-write to whatever extent we find useful.

For propagandists whose manipulations depend on their targets imbuing their narratives with a great degree of significance, this recent development is very problematic. If a How It Is narrative isn’t taken seriously, it can’t be used to manipulate the way people think, behave, and vote. And this seriousness is exactly what we’re seeing deteriorate in humanity’s relationship with narrative.

This could end up being a very, very good thing. All human destructiveness is ultimately caused by our taking thought seriously instead of simply using it as the tool it’s meant to be and setting it down when we’re done with it; look at any manifestation of human self-destructiveness, no matter how large or how small, and you’ll find a belief being taken too seriously underlying it. This shift in our relationship with narrative could end up being what saves us from our self-destructive patterns as a species.

But it won’t lend itself to trust in the mainstream media. This too would be a very good thing.

______________________

I’m celebrating the hardback release of Woke: A Field Guide For Utopia Preppers by making a pay-as-you-feel PDF available.

The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, or throwing some money into my tip jar on Ko-fi, Patreon or Paypal. If you want to read more you can buy my books. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge.

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Maturity Is Discovering How Everything You Believe Is A Lie

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 25/04/2021 - 11:26pm in

Listen to this article:

https://medium.com/media/3b1e53034ec17cdbfa958a4aba98c7e6/href

You get your first taste of it when you’re little. You find your Christmas presents in your parents’ closet in early December, or maybe some older kid just tells you that Santa Claus isn’t real.

What the hell? What the hell is this? Some freaky psyop run by your parents, just for kicks? And all the other parents are in on it too? And Hollywood? All those movies and TV specials about Santa were just lies? How far does this go?

What is this strange reality?

Ah well. We’ve all got to grow up sometime. From now on you only believe in real stuff, like the Tooth Fairy.

Thus begins a maturing process of discovering the various ways you’ve been deceived about what’s real which, hopefully, continues for the rest of your life.

When you get a bit older you might start gathering information which causes you to realize that some of the people in your life might not have been telling you the truth about some things. Soda and Pop Rocks can’t really cause a dangerous explosion. Your eleven year-old friend probably hasn’t “boned” every girl in class. You actually haven’t been seeing Dad much since the divorce.

And that’s usually about as exciting as it gets for a while, because you’re a young person trying to learn how to function in the world and you can’t learn if you believe everything you’re being taught is a lie. But that period of credulity doesn’t last long. Not if you’re lucky.

Maybe you start questioning this religion thing. It sure seems weird how they tell you you’ll be rewarded with eternal bliss if you espouse a belief system around which entire empires have been wrapped, which still to this day influences political thought and makes a whole lot of money for some people, but you’ll be tortured forever if you don’t. That sounds made up. Like the sort of thing you’d make up if you were trying to manipulate a large number of people into believing something that benefits you.

And maybe that opens up a bunch of other areas of exploration. Maybe it’s no big deal if someone loves somebody who’s the same gender as them. Maybe the hard labels and roles we assign to gender aren’t necessarily as solid and real as we’ve been told. And maybe relationships don’t need to look a certain way at all. Maybe relationship structures are completely made up, and people can write their own rules with consenting adults in whatever way they like, even if it’s unusual and doesn’t seem like something you’d enjoy.

Maybe it’s okay for everyone to find their own way in this life, since there don’t appear to be any trustworthy roadmaps of authority on the matter. Maybe it’s okay for people to take up any philosophy or approach to living they find useful, for however long they find it useful, and then take up new ones when the old ones aren’t useful anymore. Maybe it’s okay if they want to smoke a joint or have sex with many different people, or do anything they like as it doesn’t harm others.

Maybe you start to wonder if the political ideology of your parents is stupid. Hey, who knows? Maybe what they’ve told you about the world and how it works is no more true than what they used to tell you about Santa Claus.

If you continue to mature, at some point you’ll start to notice that the news isn’t being entirely honest about things. Is every single war of the US and its allies really good and just? Are the nations which aren’t aligned with the US really nefarious monsters who constantly plot our downfall and commit atrocities? That sounds made up. Like something you’d make up if you were trying to manipulate a large number of people into believing something that benefits you.

As you discover more and more things you’ve been given false or misleading information about by the “reputable sources” in the mass media, at some point you’ll notice that the picture you are now seeing of the world is completely irreconcilable with what you were taught in school about your nation, your political system, your government, and your world.

You were lied to. You do not live in an imperfect but well intentioned democracy in which the people determine the best course of action for their government using votes, you live in an oligarchy with no meaningful separation between corporate power and state power, whose fate is determined not by votes but by a loose transnational alliance of plutocrats and sociopathic government agencies. You do not live in a separate nation in a world full of other separate nations, you live in a globe-spanning power alliance which functions as a single empire controlled by unaccountable elites who use governments as tools to advance agendas of control and domination.

The economy is a collective delusion. Money is a conceptual construct that’s only as real as we all agree to pretend it is. All the written and unwritten rules which govern our society are made up, and if enough of us wanted to we could simply make new ones. All the stories about what our world is and what it should be are constructs of the human imagination, and we are free to collectively re-imagine or simply dispense with them if we collectively choose to do so.

As you uncover more and more lies and mature even further, you start getting curious about what other beliefs in your head are false. Beliefs about life itself. Beliefs about society. Beliefs about your loved ones and your relationships. Beliefs about yourself.

Maybe you begin unearthing beliefs you didn’t even know you’d had that had been lurking in your subconscious mind, pulling the strings of your life from behind the scenes. Beliefs like, “The world is a dark, scary place.” Or, “Life is supposed to be hard.” Or, “I have to stay in this marriage because I promised I would.” Or, “I have to maintain a relationship with my mother even though she’s horrible to me.” Or, “I don’t deserve to be happy.” “I am disgusting.” “I am ugly.” “I am unworthy.” “I am unlovable.”

And maybe you start changing your life so that it aligns with what you know to be true instead of with your old false beliefs. Maybe you find love. Maybe you quit your awful job to take a chance on something you enjoy. Maybe you leave your unfulfilling marriage. Maybe you begin creating a whole new life based on truth and consciousness.

And maybe, just maybe, at some point you discover that even the thing you take to be “you” isn’t real. That there is no solid separate self to be found anywhere outside the realm of mental narrative, and that all of your psychological suffering has been caused by the fact that most of your thoughts revolve around a “me” character who has never ever existed. Maybe you discover that separation itself is a lie that is only given the illusion of reality by belief in mental labels, and that beneath the false narratives of the labeling, dividing mind, it’s all one.

And maybe you keep right on maturing, remaining curious about what’s really true for the rest of your life. And the more clearly and truthfully you perceive what’s going on in yourself, your life, your society and your world, the more efficaciously you are able to move through it all. And maybe you discover that this brings an amount of happiness, love and beauty to your life that you never would have previously dreamed possible.

Or maybe you don’t. It’s your adventure, and I could be lying as much as your parents were as they set out the milk and cookies for Santa. I just wish you a fulfilling journey into your own relationship with truth, for as far as you want to take it.

___________________

I’m celebrating the hardback release of Woke: A Field Guide For Utopia Preppers by making a pay-as-you-feel PDF available.

The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, or throwing some money into my tip jar on Ko-fi, Patreon or Paypal. If you want to read more you can buy my books. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge.

Bitcoin donations:1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Featured image “Santa’s Tombstone” via Steve Jurvetson, Creative Commons 2.0 license.

What If EVERYONE Threw Shoes At Bush? Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 23/04/2021 - 10:51pm in

The US didn’t re-enter Iraq in 2014 to stop ISIS, they re-entered Iraq in 2014 to stop Soleimani from stopping ISIS.

This is important to note right now, because that’s the main argument we’re hearing against withdrawing from Iraq and Afghanistan: “Oh the terrorists will take over and we’ll just have to go back like in 2014.” They didn’t have to go back in 2014; the people who actually live in the Middle East could’ve resolved it on their own if there wasn’t a world-dominating empire trying to control everything.

The “war on terror” has never been about defeating violent extremist factions, it’s been about keeping the nations in the region from relying on Iran to defeat them, and about justifying endless military expansionism in a key geostrategic part of the world. It’s been about ensuring the US power alliance, not Iran, is the dominant military force in the Middle East.

Soleimani was the strongest argument that the “war on terror” isn’t actually necessary. And that’s essentially why he’s dead now.

I’m thinking of writing a horror story about a dystopian world where weapons manufacturers are allowed to pay large amounts of money to agencies called “think tanks” which circulate narratives designed to convince government policymakers to start wars that profit the arms industry.

It’d be just like those other dystopian horror novels about giant corporations butchering the poor for money, except instead of selling human flesh they’re selling the weapons used to kill them.

What do you think? Too out there and unbelievable?

In tyrannical regimes they don’t let political dissidents speak. In free democracies they just refuse dissidents any influential platforms and use algorithms to keep revolutionary ideas from being heard by a significant number of people.

The US has killed millions and displaced tens of millions just since the turn of this century and its Secretary of State spends all day tweeting about how other countries are human rights abusers.

No other government has done this. No other government has killed millions and displaced tens of millions since the turn of this century. Yet when you say this, you get accused of “whataboutism”. No, idiot, distracting from the world’s very worst offender is the “whataboutism”.

Even if all US narratives about China were 100 percent true (and they aren’t), Washington would still be a far, far worse human rights offender than Beijing and in no position to criticize human rights abuses at all.

Every time George W Bush makes news headlines and it’s not because of a war crimes tribunal, it’s a reminder that laws are for the little people.

What if EVERYONE threw their shoes at George W Bush?

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In a remotely sane world creatures like John Bolton would not be given mainstream platforms for decades on end, they would be driven out of every town they enter until they’re forced to crawl into a cave eating bats in the darkness for the rest of their miserable lives.

The simple fact that this reptile keeps getting platformed is by itself complete evidence that our world is dominated by psychopaths. You never see anti-imperialists on the mainstream media, but John fucking Bolton gets the spotlight whenever he wants it. That’s how bat shit crazy our world is. The status quo has no legitimate claim on anything ever.

The rising threat of nuclear war is the most urgent matter in the world and it’s insane that we’re not talking about it all the time.

The day the world ends will start like any other. People will go to work, argue with strangers online. No one will expect it. Then there will be a miscommunication, misfire, miscalculation or malfunction which leads to a nuke being deployed among heightening cold war tensions.

The end of the world won’t be the result of some epic Hollywood struggle between good guys and bad guys. It will be the result of garden variety human stupidity. Someone being a little careless amid the day-to-day management of the US empire’s struggle to maintain global hegemony.

It will be a stupid mistake, just like all the other stupid mistakes humans have made since we first stood upright. Only difference is we won’t be around anymore to recognize and appreciate how stupid this particular mistake was, and to learn from it, and to grow.

There are mountains of evidence that the US and its allies bombed Syria on false grounds in 2018, and yet people who point this out get called “Assadists” and “atrocity deniers”. For scrutinizing the most powerful and destructive government on earth using evidence and journalism.

The entire argument that the OPCW scandal is fake boils down to a bizarre conspiracy theory that OPCW investigators collaborated with Damascus and Moscow to spin Douma as a false flag for some reason. This would’ve been laughed out of the room if it weren’t backed by the empire.

It’s freakish that you get accused of war crimes denial when actually trying to get a war crime solved. The facts are in, the Douma incident needs to be ripped wide open, and Aaron Maté needs to be showered with awards for his excellent work exposing this scandal. It’s crazy that it’s 2021 and people are still acting like you’re a treasonous freak if you believe the US power alliance might lie and manipulate about a government it openly wants to topple, whose country it has been bombing and occupying, right next door to Iraq.

It will never stop fascinating me how full online discussion forums are of accounts who spend their time supporting the foreign policy objectives of the most powerful and destructive government on earth while pretending they’re brave, up-punching rebels.

Someone could publish all the darkest secrets of the western empire online and within hours the imperial narrative managers would have everyone convinced that the leaks don’t matter because the person who published it knows somebody who knows somebody who is anti-semitic.

White supremacism is a lot easier to see when you zoom the camera all the way out and look objectively at the way resources, bombs, and human labor are moving on the world stage as a whole.

The majority of people get that the news is at least somewhat bullshit; the problem is there’s no consensus on why. Is it incompetence? A liberal conspiracy? The plutocratic class protecting its interests (ding ding)? Our job is to clarify both that the MSM lies to us, and why.

If people understand that plutocratic and imperialist interests are being protected by the billionaire media, they know what lies to watch out for. Otherwise all the confusing white noise leaves them screaming at the TV about trans people trying to destroy society or whatever. There’s so much bullshit swirling around that it’s hard to know which way is up. The key is to help people figure out what way’s up, using simple pointers, so they can orient themselves to truth and reality.

Watch this video if you’re unsure why I focus on US politics over Australian politics:

https://medium.com/media/2aa52a95f59a63e3544a1fe946c3900c/href

People are so kind to me. I’m basically a digital street busker, relying entirely on reader donations, and I somehow wound up on the kindest, most generous online street corner where people give me money to do what I love full time. I’m really lucky, and I’m very, very grateful.

The internet is a consciousness-expanding substance and our rulers are working to censor it for the same reason they censored psychedelics: dysfunction and awareness cannot coexist.

It’s also the same reason abusers work to isolate their victims and cult leaders seek to isolate their members: outside eyes bringing consciousness to their abusive dynamics makes the abuse much harder to perpetuate.

It’s also the same reason the ego tries to convince us not to look too hard at its nature. At every level of the human fractal it’s a struggle between consciousness and unconsciousness, and between those forces who would benefit from each.

People fail to live their lives in awe, wonder, delight and deep peace for the same reason people keep consenting to abusive governments: our lives are ruled by narrative. And the solution to both is the same: intense curiosity about what’s going on underneath the narratives.

Governments are made up and their economies are collective hallucinations and their money is imaginary and our society is pure narrative construct and the individual self is an illusion.

Have a nice day.

____________________

I’m celebrating the hardback release of Woke: A Field Guide For Utopia Preppers by making a pay-as-you-feel PDF available.

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The Covidian Cult (Part II)

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 22/04/2021 - 1:08am in

Back in October of 2020, I wrote an essay called The Covidian Cult, in which I described the so-called “New Normal” as a global totalitarian ideological movement. Developments over the last six months have borne out the accuracy of that analogy.

A full year after the initial roll-out of the utterly horrifying and completely fictional photos of people dropping dead in the streets, the projected 3.4% death rate, and all the rest of the official propaganda, despite the absence of any actual scientific evidence of an apocalyptic plague (and the abundance of evidence to the contrary), millions of people continue to behave like members of an enormous death cult, walking around in public with medical-looking masks, robotically repeating vacuous platitudes, torturing children, the elderly, the disabled, demanding that everyone submit to being injected with dangerous experimental “vaccines,” and just generally acting delusional and psychotic.

How did we ever get to this point … to the point where, as I put it in The Covidian Cult, “instead of the cult existing as an island within the dominant culture, the cult has become the dominant culture, and those of us who have not joined the cult have become the isolated islands within it?”

To understand this, one needs to understand how cults control the minds of their members, because totalitarian ideological movements operate more or less the same way, just on a much larger, societal scale. There is a wealth of research and knowledge on this subject (I mentioned Robert J. Lifton in my earlier essay), but, to keep things simple, I’ll just use Margaret Singer’s “Six Conditions of Mind Control” from her 1995 book, Cults in Our Midst, as a lens to view the Covidian Cult through. (The italics are Singer. The commentary is mine.)

Six Conditions of Mind Control

1. Keep the person unaware of what is going on and how she or he is being changed a step at a time. Potential new members are led, step by step, through a behavioral-change program without being aware of the final agenda or full content of the group.

Looking back, it is easy to see how people were conditioned, step by step, to accept the “New Normal” ideology. They were bombarded with terrifying propaganda, locked down, stripped of their civil rights, forced to wear medical-looking masks in public, to act out absurd “social-distancing” rituals, submit to constant “testing,” and all the rest of it. Anyone not complying with this behavioral-change program or challenging the veracity and rationality of the new ideology was demonized as a “conspiracy theorist,” a “Covid denier,” an “anti-vaxxer,” in essence, an enemy of the cult, like a “suppresive person” in the Church of Scientology.

2. Control the person’s social and/or physical environment; especially control the person’s time.

For over a year now, the “New Normal” authorities have controlled the social/physical environment, and how New Normals spend their time, with lockdowns, social-distancing rituals, closure of “non-essential” businesses, omnipresent propaganda, isolation of the elderly, travel restrictions, mandatory mask-rules, protest bans, and now the segregation of the “Unvaccinated.” Basically, society has been transformed into something resembling an infectious disease ward, or an enormous hospital from which there is no escape. You’ve seen the photos of the happy New Normals dining out at restaurants, relaxing at the beach, jogging, attending school, and so on, going about their “normal” lives with their medical-looking masks and prophylactic face shields. What you’re looking at is the pathologization of society, the pathologization of everyday life, the physical (social) manifestation of a morbid obsession with disease and death.

3. Systematically create a sense of powerlessness in the person.

What kind of person could feel more powerless than an obedient New Normal sitting at home, obsessively logging the “Covid death” count, sharing photos of his medical-looking mask and post-“vaccination” bandage on Facebook, as he waits for permission from the authorities to go outdoors, visit his family, kiss his lover, or shake hands with a colleague? The fact that in the Covidian Cult the traditional charismatic cult leader has been replaced by a menagerie of medical experts and government officials does not change the utter dependency and abject powerlessness of its members, who have been reduced to a state approaching infancy. This abject powerlessness is not experienced as a negative; on the contrary, it is proudly celebrated. Thus the mantra-like repetition of the “New Normal” platitude “Trust the Science!” by people who, if you try to show them the science, melt down completely and start jabbering aggressive nonsense at you to shut you up.

4. Manipulate a system of rewards, punishments and experiences in such a way as to inhibit behavior that reflects the person’s former social identity.

The point here is the transformation of the formerly basically rational person into an entirely different cult-approved person, in our case, an obedient “New Normal” person. Singer gets into this in greater detail, but her discussion applies mostly to subcultural cults, not to large-scale totalitarian movements. For our purposes, we can fold this into Condition 5.

5. Manipulate a system of rewards, punishments, and experiences in order to promote learning the group’s ideology or belief system and group-approved behaviors. Good behavior, demonstrating an understanding and acceptance of the group’s beliefs, and compliance are rewarded, while questioning, expressing doubts or criticizing are met with disapproval, redress and possible rejection. If one expresses a question, they are made to feel that there is something inherently wrong with them to be questioning.

OK, I’m going to tell you a little story. It’s a story about a personal experience, which I’m pretty sure you’ve also experienced. It’s a story about a certain New Normal who has been harassing me for several months. I’ll call him Brian Parks, because, well, that’s his name, and I no longer feel any compunction about sharing it.

Brian is a former friend/colleague from the theater world who has gone full “New Normal” and is absolutely furious that I have not. So outraged is Brian that I have not joined the cult that he has been going around on the Internet referring to me as a “conspiracy theorist” and suggesting that I’ve had some kind of nervous breakdown and require immediate psychiatric treatment because I do not believe the official “New Normal” narrative. Now, this would not be a very big deal, except that Brian is impugning my character and attempting to damage my reputation on the Facebook pages of other theater colleagues, which Brian feels entitled to do, given that I am a “Covid denier,” a “conspiracy theorist,” and an “anti-vaxxer,” or whatever, and given the fact that he has the power of the state, the media, etc., on his side.

This is how it works in cults, and in larger totalitarian societies. It isn’t usually the Gestapo that comes for you. It’s usually your friends and colleagues. What Brian is doing is working that system of rewards and punishments to enforce his ideology, because he knows that most of my other colleagues in the theater world have also gone full “New Normal,” or at least are looking the other way and staying silent while it is being implemented.

This tactic, obviously, has backfired on Brian, primarily because I do not give a fuck what any New Normals think of me, whether they work in the theater world or anywhere else, but I am in a rather privileged position, because I have accomplished what I wanted to accomplish in the theater, and would rather stick my hand in a blender than submit my novels to corporate publishers for review by “sensitivity readers,” so there isn’t much to threaten me with. That, and I have no children to support, or administrations to answer to (unlike, for example, Mark Crispin Miller, who is currently being persecuted by the “New Normal” administration at NYU).

The point is, this kind of ideological conditioning is happening everywhere, every day, on the job, among friends, even among families. The pressure to conform is intense, because nothing is more threatening to devoted cultists, or members of totalitarian ideological movements, than those who challenge their fundamental beliefs, confront them with facts, or otherwise demonstrate that their “reality” isn’t reality at all, but, rather, a delusional, paranoid fiction.

The key difference between how this works in cults and totalitarian ideological movements is that, usually, a cult is a subcultural group, and thus non-cult-members have the power of the ideology of the dominant society to draw on when resisting the mind-control tactics of the cult, and attempting to deprogram its members … whereas, in our case, this balance of power is inverted. Totalitarian ideological movements have the power of governments, the media, the police, the culture industry, academia, and the compliant masses on their side. And, thus, they do not need to persuade anyone. They have the power to dictate “reality.” Only cults operating in total isolation, like Jim Jones’ People’s Temple in Guyana, enjoy this level of control over their members.

This pressure to conform, this ideological conditioning, must be fiercely resisted, regardless of the consequences, both publicly and in our private lives, or the “New Normal” will certainly become our “reality.” Despite the fact that we “Covid deniers” are currently outnumbered by the Covidian cultists, we need to behave as if we are not, and hold to reality, facts, and real science, and treat the New Normals as exactly what they are, members of a new totalitarian movement, delusional cultists run amok. If we do not, we will get to Singer’s Condition 6 …

6. Put forth a closed system of logic and an authoritarian structure that permits no feedback and refuses to be modified except by leadership approval or executive order. The group has a top-down, pyramid structure. The leaders must have verbal ways of never losing.

We’re not there yet, but that is where we’re headed … global pathologized totalitarianism. So, please, speak up. Call things what they are. Confront the Brians in your life. Despite the fact that they tell themselves that they’re trying to help you “come to your senses” or “see the truth,” or “trust the Science,” they are not. They are cultists, desperately trying to get you to conform to their paranoid beliefs, pressuring you, manipulating you, bullying you, threatening you. Do not engage them on their terms, or let them goad you into accepting their premises. (Once they’ve sucked you into their narrative, they’ve won.) Expose them, confront them with their tactics and their motives. You will probably not change their minds in the least, but your example might help other New Normals whose faith is slipping to begin to recognize what has been done to their minds and break with the cult.

#

CJ Hopkins
April 21, 2021
Photo: Cheri Scudder-Thomas/Twitter

DISCLAIMER: DISCLAIMER: The preceding essay is entirely the work of our in-house satirist and self-appointed political pundit, CJ Hopkins, and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Consent Factory, Inc., its staff, or any of its agents, subsidiaries, or assigns. If, for whatever inexplicable reason, you appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to support it, please go to his Substack page, or his Patreon page, or send your contribution to his PayPal account, so that maybe he’ll stop coming around our offices trying to hit our staff up for money. Alternatively, you could purchase his satirical dystopian sci-fi novel, Zone 23, or Volume I and II of his Consent Factory Essays, or any of his subversive stage plays, which won some awards in Great Britain and Australia. If you do not appreciate Mr. Hopkins’ work and would like to write him an abusive email, feel free to contact him directly.

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