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I'm One of Those People
“I'm one of those people ...
My father tells my sister not to go out with” - Lee Jackson (song lyric)
Why do so many of us fall for 'those people'?
First of all, who are they? Which is to say, what do they do?
Our head prefect at school was a chap called Harris (not his real name). Being something of a tin Hitler, he was not a popular person. One night someone spray painted 'F**k Harris' in 3 foot letters on the wall against which the school photographs were taken. It proved impossible to remove the graffiti completely as the wall was made of sandstone which is quite absorbent - so Mr Harris was immortalised in countless class photos over the following years. In fact, that was probably his greatest achievement. The spray painter went on to hold a senior position in government.
What happened to the likeable rogues that many of us encountered in our youth? The ones who seemed so appealing at the time – subversive, attractive, articulate, witty, socially skilled, unflappable, spray painters - naughty but nice.
Most came swiftly to anonymity and mundane jobs. But some went into big business, government, big charity or other large scale grifts where they could get paid big bucks and do some serious damage. Size matters, whether it's in business, industry and commerce, government, a trade union or an NGO. Small fry have no heft in our culture.
The people who get to the top of big organisations have done so using the kind of behaviour we see in domestic abuse. Their colleagues and subordinates respect them and are scared of them. They'll do almost anything to stay on their good side.
Symptoms of abuse include
Complying with the abuser's demands (“I will wear a mask because it’s the right thing to do”)
Catering to the abuser (“I will save grandma by calling out those nasty vaccine-deniers”)
Being subservient or submissive to them (“Bill Gates is a modern day saint”)
Finding your life centred around them (“I support digital ID cards”)
They have got to the top because the ecosystem in which they operate selects for sociopathic, hubristic bullies. Their skill sets include the ability to think quickly and throw up faux-scientific smokescreens or straw men arguments to disarm their critics. They're usually academically or professionally qualified which gives them an undeserved gravitas over those they dominate.
What is this ecosystem and why has the behaviour of one class of humans become such a problem? After all, modern humans have been around for several hundred thousand years.
The Hierarchy Extended
“big business is no fan of free markets and never will be. big business is a fan of staying big and the best way to do so is not to invite competition but to quash it. they seek not to create markets governed by consumer sovereignty bur rather to bet on sure things mandated by edict and regulation. politicians and legalism are always the tools for this” - el gato malo
Modern society started, arguably, with the technology of instant communication. The electric telegraph was commercially developed in the 1830s and the telephone followed a few decades later. Fortunes (and peerages) were made in the mid 19th Century installing trans-oceanic cables to speed the flow of messages – and money - around the world.
The net effect was increased centralisation. Now, even on another continent, subordinates could be instantly made aware of their master's wishes. It's no accident that the first huge industrial and business empires arose in the Victorian age – Jardine Matheson, Standard Oil (J D Rockefeller), Carnegie Steel. (Andrew Carnegie started work as a telegraph operator in 1848 aged 12).
Later developments like radio, communications satellites and the internet made it even easier to extend hierarchical control with the result that the Robber Barons of the 19th century have become the Pirate Emperors of the 21st.
Global information reach has given unreasonable power to individuals like Bill Gates, Larry Fink, Tony Fauci, etc. who use international 'charitable foundations' and 'revolving doors' to influence and control the direction in which entire countries move. This would be fine if these people were indeed the all-knowing, all-seeing, beneficent gods they claim and are claimed to be. But they are only too human - with all the frailties and defects which accompany that – and they worship another god who isn't the kindly, fatherly one we in the west grew up with.
Don't get me wrong here, I'm not blaming the people who are involved in this – it's the ecosystem that they, and we, work under that is the issue.
We can't change the human predilection for hierarchical control. Nor can we make the technology of instant communication go away. Nor can we remove the unseen cancer of global old boy networks.
So we must channel information technology into serving us and not the technocratic emperors.
Our panocracy is a free market of ideas and policies where individuals decide for themselves whether to participate, what to sell, what to buy and how much to pay. Not a rigged market in which dissembling demagogues determine what and whom is bought and sold and at what price.
As I’m only (very) part-time on this project, progress is snail’s pace! Please comment and throw your ideas and criticisms into the hat.