Archives for posts with tag: Authoritarian

Your humble correspondent and his amazingly tolerant spouse spent last weekend with family, preparing for all manner of family-altering events. In the course of that, we were exposed to Cable “News” of various flavors (we don’t typically watch that kind of crap at chez Blunt and Cranky) on family members’ TeeVees, as they keep those channels on during waking hours. This was a depressingly revelatory experience, and it explained a lot about how America has would up so close to becoming a Dystopia on the order of Brave New World, 1984, or one of such.

What this writer saw was a load of propaganda, innuendo, speculation, dissimulation, distraction, obfuscation, panic-mongering, manipulation, and outright lies: call it 90+% of the programming. Any actual news appeared at random and infrequently. This, whether one was subjected to Fox, CNN, or MSNBC. The vast majority of airtime was swallowed up by “panel discussions”, “analysis”, and members of the the Punditocracy doing their Pundit thing.

So this morning, listening to the Beeb on the car radio, all one heard was the Brit Flavor of the same programming. Perhaps a bit more news there, but not by a lot. And it brought home the pervasiveness of the phenomenon: we are getting the same sort of near-as-no-matter brainwashing as described by Huxley or Orwell. Big Brother may not be watching us 24/7/365 yet, but He is most certainly doing His very best to control our thinking. And having great success at it, too.

Ebola? Be afraid, shun the infected!
A mass shooting? Be afraid, buy more guns and hide!
Terrorists? Be afraid, elect authoritarians!
People of Color in our country? Be afraid, vote to take away their rights!

On and on, on nearly every topic (except the occasional cat video), fear was the product being sold. And a neo-Fascist, authoritarian approach was the lone solution being presented as the “only way” to be “safe”.

America has gone down this road before: the “Redskins”, the “Yellow Peril”, and the “Red Scare” are just a few examples of how the powers that be use the media to manipulate us, mislead us, and bit by bit, enslave us. By pitting us against the “Other” du jour, we are led down a twisted road to a Dystopian nation, in which we will all be at risk of being “Othered” if we don’t stay in line.

One bright spot: our President doesn’t watch cable news: http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/jay-carney-president-obama-is-various-reader-of-print-does-not-watch-cable-news_b243577 One very dark spot: this is presented as a very unusual and possibly negative thing. By, of course, cable news:

STELTER: Is it true the president doesn’t watch any cable news?

CARNEY: It is true, which doesn’t mean that he doesn’t get news, in a real time basis. He does. He’s a voracious consumer of the printed word, even the electronic printed word, and but he doesn’t — he doesn’t watch cable news. I have spent, you know, countless hours with him on Air Force One, especially, in the conference room where we always had the TV on, and it was never in any of the trips I ever took with him, tuned in to cable news.

So hey, cool, the Prexy isn’t getting the full brainwash treatment. Yay. He’s not peddling as much fear and loathing as most DC Politicos. But of course, most people don’t like him much, so who cares what he has to say?

I know most people don’t like Obama; after all, I heard it on CNN this weekend…

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

Prologue: Not all churches are covered by this post – only the authoritarian ones. Not all businesses, either (this writer’s employer is blessedly rational on this topic, for instance), nor government entities.  So if your organization does not fit the bill, please refrain from getting your hackles up and screeching on the comments section. If it DOES; well then, you are either screwing others or being screwed by others, and so deserve whatever you read below. All clear now on respecting the sensible organizations? Yay.

As discussed previously, there is no government war on religion, regardless of the bushwah that has been dumped into the zeitgeist by the punditocracy and the advertisers they serve (faux “Wars” make for good ratings and that makes money).  Nor does the money that has been invested in creating this false notion make it any more true. A big, well-polished and expensively-promoted turd remains a turd.

Here’s the deal: After removing the money factor, the so-called “War On Religion” is nothing more or less than another tool to help institutions to take away freedom from individuals.  These institutions can be church, state, or businesses, but they all have the same goal of control. Anyone who has been thus affected by a large organization’s attempt to do such is likely nodding their head; anyone who hasn’t is likely scratching their head; and anyone who is trying to make this happen is likely having their head turn purple upon reading this thesis statement.

What allegedly caused the most recent blowup? A requirement that employers pay a few pennies for birth control for their employees who want and need such medical care. So, two things happened: first, there was money involved, and the churches didn’t want to pay it – times are tough and all that, ya know. Second, the more authoritarian churches saw a threat to their control over their flocks, and immediately fought back.

We can tell who is who by their reactions to the resolution of the money problem: most churches shrugged and moved on, problem solved. The Catholic Church, as well as some other authoritarian church, state and commercial groups continued to squawk.  This betrays an agenda that is far more of a threat to our nation than an argument over the price and availability of hormone tablets.

The agenda is to change who controls the lives of the American people:  from themselves to their institutions. Most Americans like to think we are in charge of our lives, but there are many institutions that don’t like that idea at all. Not that this is a new phenomenon: the Islamic Jihads raped, pillaged and murdered many infidels, as did the Crusaders in their time; the Inquisition did likewise to Jews and Protestants; so too did the Marxist/Leninist regimes of the last century.  “Kiss the cross or kiss the sword”, as one tyrant put it. Be controlled or be killed. That is how these types of slimeballs used to assume and maintain control.

In modern times, authoritarian regimes have gotten a bit smarter if no less venal – they would rather keep the sheep alive longer so as to fleece them more often, instead of killing them.  However, this only works for sheep, and not everyone in America aspires to that status.  If people think for themselves, institutions lose control: if people do what they are told, institutions gain control. Not hard to guess which scenario the control-freaks prefer, so they do their best to encourage sheeply behavior.

For sheer power over the behavior of humans, religion is one with few rivals (mind, it is not all bad – lots of good is done by those with a spiritual bent): it has proven itself a potent force in controlling the thoughts and actions of human beings for millennia.  In this case:  these churches are attempting to control health care decisions that previously belonged to individual American women (“this church does  not believe in birth control, therefore we  will make it difficult/impossible for you to get birth control”. “Oh, and to Hell with your charming little notions of individual religious freedom, by the way”).

Of course, these churches like to pretend they are “victims of Obama’s War on Religion”. Bull-F***ing-S***. Churches can do almost anything they want, as can their followers, and the more realistic among them know this full well: but playing this card helps them to gull the gullible and confound the sensible. Authoritarian churches pretend to be powerless while accreting power. It is a scummy, dishonest and revolting, but regrettably effective and time-honored tactic.

Never mind the Constitution, the laws, or even the words of their own Holy Books; these power-hungry churls are following the path of Paul by setting up their Church as a political and economic force that can dictate terms to civil authorities. Nothing new: it has been done in Constantinople, Rome, France, England, Iran and many other principalities. Now they want to do it to America. It is our responsibility as citizens to not be controlled by such authoritarians: if we roll over and take it like stupid little baa-ing sheep at shearing time, we deserve whatever screwing we get.

Mr. B & C

Tomorrow, the debut of a new feature – The Lying Sack of S*** of The Week