31st July

Nought to report on this day. Instead, here’s something for you to chew on:

“Modern industrial civilization has developed within a certain system of convenient myths. The driving force of modern industrial civilization has been individual material gain, which is accepted as legitimate, even praiseworthy, on the grounds that private vices yield public benefits, in the classic formulation. Now, it has long been understood, very well, that a society that is based on this principle will destroy itself in time. It can only persist, with whatever suffering and injustice that it entails, as long as it is possible to pretend that the destructive forces that humans create are limited, that the world is an infinite resource, and that the world is an infinite garbage can. At this stage of history either one of two things is possible. Either the general population will take control of its own destiny and will concern itself with community interests, guided by values of solidarity, sympathy and concern for others, or alternatively there will be no destiny for anyone to control. As long as some specialized class is in a position of authority, it is going to set policy in the special interests that it serves. But the conditions of survival, let alone justice, require rational social planning in the interests of the community as a whole, and by now that means the global community. The question is whether privileged elite should dominate mass communication and should use this power as they tell us they must — namely to impose necessary illusions, to manipulate and deceive the stupid majority and remove them from the public arena. The question in brief, is whether democracy and freedom are values to be preserved or threats to be avoided. In this possibly terminal phase of human existence, democracy and freedom are more than values to be treasured; they may well be essential to survival.” – Noam Chomsky

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4 Responses to 31st July

  1. Paul Wyrd says:

    Noam, Noam, Noam, always gives me lots of ideas to munch on!

  2. Tony says:

    Denis Diderot, the French Enlightenment writer/philosopher, died July 31st 1784. Curiously, he bore an uncanny resemblance to our current master of the unenlightened, David Cameron.

  3. Jan says:

    “As long as some specialized class is in a position of authority, it is going to set policy in the special interests that it serves”

    Indeed. But all is control; power, corruption and lies.

    Anyone – even Forward Thinking MoFo’s – have an agenda. At some scale (micro to macro) we all become a “specialized class” at some point in our battle for survival. I’d love to opt out; but that would be setting my policy. Which would impact on others. And if they decided to join me, would I cede my authority to the common good? I’m a bloke. I’d need (yet more) re-configuring of my hard-wiring!

    The trick is, to keep it micro. Don’t cause hurt. Not in my name.

    Interesting post though. Beats the wall to wall Olympics.

    Smashing site, too 🙂

    • Eric Blair says:

      I really like this comment. Nice to see someone who is in touch with alternative political thought but points out the problem of macro projects. Thank you.

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