We sit eating our picnics, talking of sweet little things. Forgetting the boulders shifted and pyramids build in order for us to live like Eloi; forgetting the hard times that are coming due to our malaise and complacency in standing up to a corrupt order that still exploits us but in ways wholly different to the ways it exploited our forefathers. We look back to them with pride and respect, but they are still here and living.
They serve our plates from an underworld far away from the underworld which our own forefathers used to tunnel through to fuel the mouth of a machine, still in its infancy. But that machine was allowed to grow into a monster; we let it do so, because our minds were put at ease by never-seen-before food luxuries and sentimental TV dramas, panning home the message that all is well.
This monster now controls the whole world, but it is a parasite which takes more than the world can afford to give.
People are still living like our forefathers, so we can eat the scones with the cream on a lovely hill in a tourist spot, crystallising all its beauty by using our digi-cameras, so that the beauty will always surround us. But the veneer is cracking, rips are starting to appear in our sunset happy ending; and what waits on the other side is an harsh confirmation that our day-dream is gone, and the utopia we had been promised is never to arrive.
The impetus on growth suggest that such a place is where we are heading, but you have to keep one eye shut to the billions who have already arrived in an anti-utopia. But this task still isn’t too hard to do; you can always turn the channel and watch the Sunday night drivel. Hopefully when you turn the channel back, some fresh-faced man will be making you feel nice by talking about more growth – lovely growth.
Phew! things are all-right after all; you can sit back, relax, and wait for utopia to arrive. But in those passing moments, when the sun isn’t lighting up the park and the scones hadn’t filled your belly, a thought keeps drifting into your mind; a voice which seems to be speaking of another world, but claims to be speaking of this one. It says “when are you going to make that change? when are going to be part of that change? you know this life you have cannot be like this for much longer, and the longer you leave it the worse it will be when things begin to fall apart. We don’t eat scones and jam; we eat oil, and that oil is running out”
“surely this can’t be my world?!” you say “everything seems to be OK, I cant see anything on the horizon?”
Rest assured! You should ignore that thought anyway! You’re meeting Matt and Susan and kids for lunch in half an hour; the footballs on the TV this afternoon, and you’re having dinner tonight in that lovely new Tapas bar!. Today’s going to be a lovely day!!
The bigger picture
Capitalism sucks the money out of your pockets by, first of all, sucking your sense of self-worth out of you; making you buy it back through product purchase. The collected advert suggestions combine, almost in mutual agreement, to create the feelings of inadequacy in the individual. They support each other by collectively making this environment of eternally dis-satisfied ‘Consumers’ constantly trying to buy back themselves; each company feeds off this mental environment. Capitalism is a parasite on the human being.
The two words I never hear any of the politicians say are ‘Capitalism’ and ‘inequality’. We hear the words ‘growth’ and ‘fairness’ mentioned countless times; and although they seem to be familiar words, to the respective former, they generate profoundly different thoughts. Growth always generates optimistic thoughts, and even in those who out and out oppose Capitalism. However, the ‘growth’ mentioned is entirely for the benefit of Capitalism, and getting it moving again. However to say this would sound profoundly less positive, and would receive a much less agreeable the reaction from the majority, Barr the few who actually benefit from the system.
‘Fairness’ is subjective. What is viewed to be fair by one person may not be fair to another. So ‘Fairness’ doesn’t necessarily mean tackling inequalities, which is the real issue – which, I am sure, if most were completely aware of the actualities and and consequences of it, would want action on.
‘Equality of opportunity’ are words that are widely used by the advocates of Capitalism, as if it equates to some kind of overall fairness, but it is a fundamentally flawed promise; life chances and social mobility are more favorable to those who are already more privileged/affluent. You will never hear a spoke-person for one of the major parties say “We aim to tackle inequality” or “We aim to do more to distribute the nation’s wealth”; to say this would be counter-productive to the Capitalist forces always whispering in their ears.
Because we are constantly diverted from the bigger picture of the consequences of global capitalism, as if it didn’t even exist, (we are much more likely to bring the other ‘isms’ into a conversation, such as Fascism and Communism, and look baffled if anyone mentions the C word) we collectively talk its talk without even realising it.
I was talking with a friend, about a year ago now, who was telling me about a television program he had had mis-fortune of viewing. The program was about the advertising of fashion/glamour products. One of females speaking within the show was talking about the techniques used by an advert aimed at young women. Apparently she said the advert was great because it stole the lady’s sense of self-worth, making her feel inadequate without possessing the product the advertisement was selling.
My friend found it baffling how this woman could see this as a good thing – and he was right to feel this way. He was justified in thinking that what this woman thinks is a good/positive thing – making ‘consumers’ feel inadequate and not good enough (which if prolonged, leads to mental suffering) – equates to a cruelty, even evil-mindedness
I think that the context of what she said, on its own, does equate to evil, but I do not think the woman was evil for saying it. Commerce takes precedence over all other factors that are essential to a society, under capitalist order. It is seen, always, as a positive thing, linked with the thoughts about ‘growth’. I believe she, like many others, cannot see the deep negativity in what she said; blindfolded to the social consequences caused by a commerce that is given free reign over everything else.
For example: people can pity the Anorexics, starving themselves to be as good as the ‘digitally-perfected’ models on every screen, but they never dare to come to question the source of all of this pain, from which they’d cease to see commerce as a wholly positive thing.
Of course, we are never encouraged to look at the bigger picture; the politicians carefully construct their sentences to avoid using words which would prompt us to do so; they tell us that justice is being done and fairness is being brought in, without actually changing anything, execpt the alteration of a few words. Like George Orwell said in the 1940’s “Political language is deisgned to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind” today the main political parties tell us they are making a fairer Britain and that they will take steps to tackle Climate change, when it is all lies, becasue they refuse to even mention the source of these problems, never mind challenge it, which is the stubborn system of Capitalism, which is well past its sell-by date. When we smile at the words ‘Growth’ and ‘Fairness’ we view the world through Capitalisms persuasions, and we see through the politicians’ tunnel-vision outlook, which is why advertisement techniques, a new Starbucks opening in town, or new advert on the bus stop billboard, greet us with a feeling of positivity, as if it is one more step up the staircase to a utopia.