Calculated Covert Control Part 2: Bread and Circuses
By M. Ruppert
End the Lie editor
This is the second installment of our Calculated Covert Control series, and this is just the beginning. Thus far I have no less than 12 topics that I will cover in these works. If you would like to suggest a topic/idea for me to cover or have a specific issue you think demands attention, I would love to hear what you have to say. Please stay tuned for the rest of this series, by the end of which you will be able to compile an entire tome of my writing on this subject, all for free, of course! E-mail [email protected] with any subject recommendations, research recommendations, comments, questions, and article submissions.
In the uncertain times in which we live, one can look to the past for clues as to the direction we are heading towards in the future. While the globe is being strained by an engineered food crisis, imperialistic interventions continue to be lauded while preparations are made to wage yet another war, and torture is supported, life among Americans seems to be business as usual.
The people of the United States seem to be in a daze, gone are the protest signs of the Bush regime, gone are the protests and civil disobedience and gone is the resistance to tyranny. During the era of George H. W. Bush and the completely beginning of the unnecessary and illegal war in Iraq, protests, anti-Bush bumper stickers, t-shirts and so forth were ever-present.
What has changed? Now instead of being embroiled in two conflicts based upon falsified evidence, we are in four. It does not seem as though this number will go down any time soon either as evidenced by the rising tide of fingers pointing to Pakistan. Why are the people of the United States sitting back and letting this happen? Where have we gone astray?
The answer is one which many wise men and women throughout history have seen as a grim portent for the degeneration of a society. In Athenian democracy, this was called idiocy and those absorbed by the culture of egocentrism and narcissism were called idiots. This term has been more pertinent than ever. I would like to point out that usually in my writings here when I say “idiot” or “idiocy” I am usually referring to the Athenian meaning, not the more common definition, “an utterly foolish or senseless person” or “a person of the lowest order in a former classification of mental retardation, having a mental age of less than three years old and an intelligence quotient under 25.” I make this distinction because there is a strong political connotation that must be recognized, many in America today are not just foolish but completely self-obsessed or absorbed in things that have absolutely no relevance to the real world.
“Bread and circuses” comes from the Roman poet and satirist Juvenal, specifically from Satire X,
… Already long ago, from when we sold our vote to no man, the People have abdicated our duties; for the People who once upon a time handed out military command, high civil office, legions — everything, now restrains itself and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses (or games)…
[...] iam pridem, ex quo suffragia nulli / uendimus, effudit curas; nam qui dabat olim / imperium, fasces, legiones, omnia, nunc se / continet atque duas tantum res anxius optat, / panem et circenses. [...]
Today Juvenal’s satire is more poignant than ever, the American people have abandoned their posts and ignored their duty to defend their freedom. The majority of the public in the United States display nothing short of pure idiocy, spending more time playing fantasy football or watching Jersey Shore than they do staying informed. Today’s society has involved into a cultural dichotomy; some people are informed, educated, concerned, and active participants in life and their futures while others are completely passive and seek only entertainment or short term pleasure.
Is it just a coincidence that we have slid down the slippery slope of idiocy towards a society that cares more about “bread and circuses” than our freedoms? I think not. Exerting top-down control over a large, informed, and active public is much more difficult than controlling a populous comprised of narcissistic imbeciles more concerned with the lives of celebrities than their own. The same can be said for a people who are perpetually in a drug-induced stupor, as seen in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. In the real world, many people do exist in a Brave New World-esque false reality while those who are not being subdued by constant drug intake are lobotomized by television, celebrity worship, and an intellectually-devoid social structure.
Do not think that I am attempting to be condescending, and I am definitely not speaking of you, dear reader, when I say this. By reading this page, you are already leaps and bounds ahead of the majority of the American public. In opening your mind to alternative opinions and news that is not fed to you by the mainstream media, you are taking command of your future and your own mind. Thusly, when I speak of a lobotomized, celebrity worshiping public, I am speaking of those who never research anything for themselves and just passively go through life like cattle to the slaughter. Thankfully there are people, like our readers, that are breaking out of this engineered paradigm of control and perpetual ignorance.
While Ben Bernanke, of the private Federal Reserve, continues to hold down interest rates in order to artificially prop up the governmental Ponzi-scheme, much of America has no clue what is going on. Meanwhile, the president of the Richmond Federal Reserve, Jeffrey Lacker has said that interest rates will likely be raised this year. Lacker has based this statement on the supposedly strengthening economy, a notion which is so far from the truth it is laughable to anyone who has been paying attention to economic news. However, if the Fed raises the interest rates without a strong enough economy, we will witness nothing short of an economic collapse. The scariest part is that most Americans have no idea what the Federal Reserve is to begin with. What do you think will happen when these ignorant individuals wake up one day to find their savings worthless, with no ability to afford food? Do you think these people will just go back inside, watch “Dancing with the Stars” and starve to death? I doubt it. These witless individuals will likely panic and great civil unrest will ensue.
Ignorance does not breed preparation or forward thought; in fact the culture of celebrity worship intentionally keeps people more worried about how the date between Celebrity A and Celebrity B went than they are concerned about being able to feed their children. While our president supports the torture of Americans, the extra-judicial murder of unarmed, innocent people, and our dollar becomes worth less by the day, these individuals do nothing other than pick up their McDonalds drive-thru and speed home to watch Jersey Shore. These realities are a grim portent for those of us who are aware and prepared for a potentially tumultuous future, as we will be few in a sea of witless, terrified sheeple.
However, one need not worry or fear the future, fear and anxiety will do nothing for you. These are utilized by those in power to control the masses, as we are witnessing with the re-birth of the Osama bin Laden boogeyman and his al Qaeda patsies. We, of the informed and educated public, can see through these attempts to force submission and obedience to an unconstitutional police state. Similarly, we must see that the Earth will keep on spinning in place while hurtling around our Sun, even if every society and economy on the planet completely collapses. Thus, we must stay informed, stay prepared, and stay vigilant while not succumbing to the culture of fear and anxiety to which many are subjected. We must not allow fear to cripple us or anxiety to weaken our resolve. We must realize that an educated public is a dangerous public and a non-idiotic American people will weather any economic or socio-political storm, no matter how dire it may seem. When we succumb to fear and anxiety, we are just as easily controlled as those too busy reading US Weekly to realize there are four wars being waged in our name around the world.
Today’s “bread and circus” culture is quite a bit more diversified and opaque when compared to the historical accounts of the Roman Empire in its decline. Now we have Xbox 360s, PlayStations, high-definition televisions, 3D movies, and computer games that are so addictive people actually die playing them. Do we think all of these distractions, some of which cause obsessions that consume infinite amounts of time, are purely a product of technology and a free market? Do we see someone playing World of Warcraft 20 hours a day as nothing more than an individual enjoying a well-made product? I believe it would be ignorant to think that the entirety of the entertainment industry, from films to video games, has grown to the behemoth size it has today without any nudges in the right direction.
While our economy is about as strong as a 120 year old with osteoporosis and a faulty hip replacement, items like lottery ticket sales have actually grown. Those who have even a basic grasp of statistics know that it would be quite a bit more prudent to save the money one might spend on a lottery ticket in order to buy something that you know you will be able to use, like food. Similarly, the uninformed public would much rather be mindlessly entertained than educated on the real world or the geopolitical events that will determine their futures. Back in 2008, during a massive economic downturn, this notion was proven correct. Like in the Great Depression, much of the American people sought not to make changes in their lives or to prepare their estates to mitigate any unforeseen tragedies but instead they looked to escape from reality. When the economy makes a downward spiral as we saw begin in 2008 and continue to this day, ticket sales for movies see growth.
Instead of taking the $20+ one might spend on taking one’s family to the movies and investing it in a home garden or a business of some sort, much of America flushes their dwindling funds down the toilet of the entertainment industry. While the global food crisis becomes more serious than ever and people take to the streets across Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, Americans cheer the death of “Saddam Hussein” while pounding Natural Ice.
It doesn’t take a priest or ascetic to see that our society has been perverted and is being driven down a dark path of narcissistic self-worship, self-aggrandizement, and Madison Avenue’s engineered self-consciousness and sense of worthlessness. You may characterize it as sin, evil, greed, idiocy, or whatever you would like, but in the end they all lead down the same shadowy road to total oppression and imaginary freedom. Like Brave New World Americans are increasingly unaware of their shackles, uninterested in learning about politics, economics, psychology, philosophy, or art, and most frightening, growingly apathetic about the societal changes around us. Seeing people unquestioningly walk through Michael Chertoff’s golden ticket, also known as the naked body scanners or ionizing radiation baths, makes me weep for the future of America.
When I talk to fellow college students and get questions like, “Wait, what is the Federal Reserve?” or responses like, “I don’t really care about all of that politics stuff, I mean it doesn’t even affect me!”, I feel my gut sink. When I sit in a restaurant and overhear people discussing “politics” to learn that their view of politics is which potential presidential candidate they “like” the most, I truly find it hard not to slam my head onto the table and bemoan our nation’s current state of affairs.
We, as the informed and active participants in our world, must carry the burden of educating, or “waking up” those around us. When you are discussing domestic politics, economics, geopolitics, or history with someone and they attempt to force you to drop it and talk about something that doesn’t make them “sad” or “worried”, you must inform them that it is their duty as citizens to take an active role and know these things. We must not allow our friends and family to tune out reality because they think it is too grim, or seeking to escape to the fairytale world of a television situation-comedy. We must take the future of our nation into our own hands, because I think it is very clear at this point that the mainstream media and entertainment industries have absolutely no interest in educating or empowering the public.
One might say that this evolution, or devolution, from a Constitutional Republic with an active and informed citizenry to a slovenly television-obsessed public controlled by a Crony-Capitalist Kleptocracy is a natural product of a free market directed purely by public demand. This very well might be true, if it wasn’t the case that the Department of Defense funds Hollywood films. Instead of doling out “Soma” as in Brave New World, we are fed constant, rapid-pace entertainment and intellectually bankrupt education. Instead of teaching our children to appreciate and value critical thinking and a genuine hunger for knowledge, we are teaching them to employ rote memorization and, by example, that we should be spending our spare time watching television instead of reading a book. While obviously there are many exceptions to this over-generalization, as is probably the case with yourself, as you have enough wits about you to be reading this, a growing proportion of Americans are best characterized as Athenian idiots.
If we give up now, we will devolve into a purely “bread and circus” society and thus witness the completely collapse and destruction of America, a mirror of the fall of the Roman Empire. Our culture has become one in which people are more interested in entertainment than education, more excited by hedonistic pleasure than intellectual growth, and more concerned with staving off boredom for the next five minutes than protecting our civil rights. The fight for freedom will be long and hard but only through an active and informed public can true change be wrought in Washington, and nothing short of a massive amount of Americans demanding the restoration of our Constitutional Republic will bring any meaningful change. We must take back our power as the taxpaying citizens and remember the hints left to us by history. If we continue down the path we are on, we will collapse just like those before us, or even worse, fall into a complete slave state even more so than we currently are subjected to.
Say no to bread and circuses, say no to taxation without representation, and most of all say no to becoming a lobotomized slave of the corporate elite. You can do this only through informing yourself and those around you, through arming yourself and your family with an arsenal of facts and critical thinking skills instead of frozen dinners and American Idol. Take a stand and refuse to live your life as an ignorant cretin being mindlessly entertained and controlled by the invisible hand of the Corporatocracy. Voraciously consume the unparalleled beauty of the written word, our Earth’s implicit order and serene beauty, and the empowering knowledge of politics and philosophy. Only then will we be able to rise up, without violence or bloodshed, and enact real change in our world.