Discover more from Panocracy
“Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all.
We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education.
We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all.
We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality.
And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.” - Claude-Frédéric Bastiat, The Law, 1850
When those not on the 'left' challenge socialism, what they're really objecting to is totalitarianism whose state control is what they see as the defining aspect of socialism. Curiously, those on the left who challenge 'right' ideology start from a similar viewpoint.
This time we're looking into totalitarianism – or perhaps that should be “we're looking into the abyss of totalitarianism”.
In his recent book, Mattias Desmet has much to say about totalitarianism:
“Those plans and visions for the future are not so much 'forced' on the population. In many ways the leaders of the masses – the so-called elite – give the people what they want.
The 'plans' do not precede the developments, as a conspiracy logic likes to suggest. They rather follow them”- Mattias Desmet, The Psychology of Totalitarianism (my bolding)
Totalitarianism is not dictatorship or fascism as many seem to think. It's characterised by a master/servant relationship in which both parties devoutly believe in a particular ideology - the masters more than the servants. Such belief overrides reality to the point of outright denial of indisputable evidence.
Humanity is an imperfect species. Amongst the many failings of our race we can include pack behaviour. We each have feelings of dominance and subservience to others and this leads us to form hierarchical societies. It's so ubiquitous that we mostly don't even notice we're doing it.
Our language and daily communications are stuffed full of terms that expose our true nature: top dog, authority, fan(atic), loser, them (and us), the powers that be …
The recent 'pandemic' has shown how easily certain types of character fall into the role of conforming to ‘the science' that is pushed at them at every opportunity. These are the same types that make a show of religious belief or the ones that fanatically follow a sports team or a political party. This should be unsurprising in a population a significant fraction of which still believes in the paranormal.
The population has been inured to pronouncements by top dogs through its exposure to TV and online shows on which various pundits and experts are consulted. For example, innocuous cookery shows and popular interviews have given viewers the idea that simple answers to all questions can be obtained by simply asking an 'authority'. It has become very easy to stick a few professional charlatans up in front of the cameras with their ludicrous graphs purporting to tell the future and have their speculations believed without question. If recent events have shown us anything it's how amenable we are to scare stories, especially those put about by men on a small screen in suits or white coats.
This is of course fertile ground for the totalitarians within the G20 group as this White House briefing of 16th November 2022 demonstrates:
In section 23 we see a recommendation “... to facilitate seamless international travel, interoperability, and recognizing digital solutions and non-digital solutions, including proof of vaccinations.”
These will be the vaccination passports that were never going to happen.
In section 24 of the same document: “We acknowledge the importance to counter disinformation campaigns, cyber threats, online abuse, and ensuring security in connectivity infrastructure.”
What this document reveals is just how far current leaderships have fallen for their own propaganda and strayed down the path to totalitarianism.
We must remember that the National Socialist Party of German Workers (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, NSDAP) - the Nazis - sincerely believed in the goodness of their cause - as was evident from their testimony at Nuremberg. They believed, like the mediaeval burners of heretics, that they were doing those they murdered a favour by giving them a 'medical' death or saving their immortal souls. This was all in aid of making society 'healthy'
.My first reaction to the G20 announcement was sheer horror that someone could so blatantly state their openly totalitarian objectives. I had hoped that there would be time to heal some of the wounds of the Covid disaster; I had hoped that there was enough time left to get people back behind fixing our corrupted democracies; I had dared to hope that the voices of reason were beginning to have some impact - but apparently not on those who 'lead' us. But we have to remember that – as Mattias Desmet points out - totalitarian leaders follow what they think is the mind of the population. So the statement from the G20 is little more than a formalisation of the echo chamber they've all been living in for the past few years. The rest of humanity has moved on and they will too.
The current crop of (useful) idiot leaders is not the problem – it's the raptors in the shadows waiting to capitalise on the chaos that has resulted from their incompetence and failed policies. This happened 100 years ago in Italy when Mussolini grabbed power from a supine elite and then a decade later in Germany. Dire economic policies and ensuing misery allowed a small cadre of ideologues to dupe the German elites and people into supporting what they believed was right.
I said our beat here is to look optimistically to the future but I confess that sometimes it feels like our future is being taken from us for what the powerful believe to be ‘the greater good’. So I apologise if I've strayed from my objective.
Next time I'll start looking at the workings of the panocracy (the antithesis of and the antidote to totalitarianism!) in more detail. I hope you'll join me and together we can find a way to stop the madness continuing to happen.