The behaviour of our world leaders is extraordinary. These creatures trot out one ridiculous line after another about whatever and whoever, seemingly oblivious to the irony of their expedient relativism, all the while projecting as if theirs was the light and the way. They make policies based on any outlying prediction of convenience that their hypothetical histrionics can fashion and these become as the self-fulfilling prophesies of their tragic little imaginations. I’d say you couldn’t make it up but I reckon they do.
The scope for all manner of catastrophe by their obnoxious, cynical hands is horrifying. And we keep being told that there’s no alternative; that it’s competence or chaos; mainstream or radical fringe; with us or against us; deserving or undeserving; ally or monster; either-or. Always either-or… To do this they oversimplify each issue and circumstance, scapegoating or sexing up, until it is reduced to a catchy, polarizing meme and then they feign consternation over all the threats and distress they’ve conjured. Or do they conjure up a load of threats and distress and then simplify them to polarize everyone…?
How are we continuing to tolerate such an industrialised scale of hypocrisy and hubris? How on earth are we still bearing their cold indifference to cause and consequence; the expedience of their cruel, misguided pragmatism? How do we stomach the interminable provocations and funnelled paranoia? I don’t believe our modern species is so readily predisposed to such superficial extremes. I think we’re far too full of contradictions and nuance once you get underneath the first couple of layers. Why are these creatures still being allowed to get away with their obscene behaviour? At what point will we admit we are complicit and have learned to love our chains? For, if we are not; have not: where are our blazing pitchforks?
And Mainstream News’ content and delivery? It mostly seems to collude to serve the Powerful. We get fed shallow headlines followed by even shallower analyses; celebrity big-up or tear-down; something about someone, who apparently should know better, not toeing the latest line; a report about a report on something so appalling that people cannot understand how it could ever have happened at all, must ‘never again’ but probably will; a few temporary and meaningless economic numbers, followed by even more meaningless analysis; another story of hair-raising incompetence or fraud, quickly justified or deflected; another populist policy to tempt, punish or placate, framed as anything but the tinkering that it is; merit given to sheer electioneering mischief… And on and on. Every day more surreal and yet so sterile.
There are moments, some days and some whole days when it’s as though my outrage and numbness have been whisked into a solid fusion. It’s like I’m flung, for a period, into suspended animation. The passion of impotent protest, crowding in and freezing my whole being. I know it’s a fleeting overwhelm of emotion and thought but, well, it’s visiting more often and staying longer. Sometimes I think I’m only saved from losing ‘it’ due to lashings of healthy irreverence, an eye for the wry and a great deal of there but for the grace of… And I wonder at the leadership which creates and depends on a world of fight or flight for its profit; at all those around the world for whom this designed overwhelm is an imposed, perpetual constant. How are there not more people running around, demented, with wild eyes, pulling their hair out? Or curling up in a corner and rocking? I think we are, though, in our souls. Is it just me being temporarily consumed by the fanned extremes of my own angst or am I tripping into the angst of collective consciousness?
For the global atmosphere is a heavy fog of fear and denial, so widespread, so deep, so prevalent that, whether consciously or subconsciously, it must overshadow and infiltrate every individual to some degree. Even if you’re paying only a little attention to national and international affairs and conditions, you surely cannot fail to be at least uneasy about the interminable, mind-blowing ineptitude that has put our world in such a state – however you measure yourself by pressing ideological instruments. And they are pressing, aren’t they? In this reckoning coming – for reckoning is our current trajectory – there will be teeth-gnashing and hand-wringing for everyone.
I have hope. It’s in that inextinguishable light contained in Humanity’s heart and mind and an enduring faith in our capacity for enlightenment and generosity of spirit. And I tell my shadow self that this grotesque age, too, shall pass. That the People will rise. That these monsters of narrow, selfish ideology will surely be slain lest our doom be sealed because, simply, it’s the grotesque or the rest of us. And I tell myself that, whether I’ll still be sane (please smile at that) or even still around for our healing, it matters little. Others will be. However long it takes. And that those generations will conduct themselves a bit better, perhaps for longer, next time around.
© 2017, Juli [Juxtaposed]
3 thoughts on “A Frozen Spring”
This is a wonderful issue and a fitting closure to the year. I wish I had the opportunity of contributing to it and wish you all a happy and peaceful Christmas. Hope to read another in the New Year
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“the angst of the collective unconscious”…I think this is true. It’s so easy to be overwhelmed and yes, numbed by all of it. But like you, I cling to hope – that one, small light in the darkness. And I wonder if the world is just going through growing pains on the edge of a collective awakening? I would like for it to be so. Maybe all we can do on an individual level is make sure that our own lights shine just a little bit brighter to cut through all the bad. Thanks for sharing with us this month. You’ve nailed what I think a lot of us must be feeling.
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This is such an intelligent articulation of almost everything I (and maybe we) feel about our unbalanced world. You’re right, as Corina said, this must be the source of (your very apt phrase) “the angst of collective consciousness”. It is a searing analysis of truth, or lack of it. Each paragraph could be a piece in its own right; each sentence a useful reference. No words are wasted here. Brava Juli; I would like to be your friend, if I were to know who you are … But then, I fear that I may not be your intellectual equal!
Nevertheless, the answers to your many questions here are not beyond the collective conscience of those who frequent this space, here at the Bardo, amongst the Bezine/Beguine Again sorority and fraternity; not beyond those who are capable of clear objective thinking; those who at least seek the truth and can see through the many and varied vehicles of deception amongst our (so called) leadership. That leadership, who are consummate liars, who can speak untruths without flinching or giving a tell-tale sign of a lie – a flicker on the facial muscle, a momentary averting of the eyes – ultimately achieve high office, by virtue of this sociopathic ability. I have seen few exceptions, at least amongst UK political personalities as well as many billionaires.
However, I do suspect that there is a large and influential proportion of the electorate, who do not like to, cannot, do not read beyond the tabloid headline, listen beyond the sound bite, the convincing meme. There is clearly too much talk about the process of politics, about it its tactics and stratagem; too much talk about our need for a healthy economy, but not enough words are written and spoken about the issues that really affect a majority of people; about WHY, for example, we need economic growth!?! A majority of people, myself included, find it difficult to cut through the complex process of government and the legislature and the language it employs, which may be designed by lawyers to to make it so. Even amongst those, whose education and apparent wisdom may suggest otherwise, there may be too much material comfort and status – at least sufficient for their ambitions – to want to risk stepping away from their comfort zone or risk their pensions. We don’t want anarchy, but nor do we want any more of this incessant march towards the destruction of our planet, the deterioration in our mental health, caused by increasing dependance on material consumption, digital technology and the dissociation from all things natural.
The solution seems to remain tantalisingly out of reach.
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