Sunday, April 11, 2010

The complexity of individual choices in a capitalistic society

There is a mouthful. I am watching a totally hilarious 1990 movie called Mindwalk. It is essentially a huge propaganda discussion about the different views of political problems. A political viewpoint versus what some people would claim is the intellectual viewpoint.

The “intellectual” argument against “global warming”, the destruction of the rain forest, the costs of health care, the “mechanistic” ideology is provided by a woman who is playing a physicist.

In a totally ridiculous analogy the two viewpoints discuss a clock and how the mechanism of a mechanical clock are replaced by quartz and electronics. The physicist discusses how much things have changed and the politician is left speechless. Unfortunately the reality is that the underlying concepts of both the mechanical and the electronic mechanisms are the same. At the core there is no real difference. Both are calibrated mechanisms that display regulated changes. The core principles are the same. Hilarious.

The argument moves into discussions about how perception causes people to take actions and those actions are often bad for them resulting in negative consequences.

This is really a movie advocating mind control and that is a scary subject.

Mind control is actually relatively easy and it is commonly practiced by the advertising businesses as well as political organizations and movie makers. People make decisions based on their perceptions. When you change the perceptions people have you change the decisions they make.

There are times when people have core beliefs that they refuse to let go of no matter what happens. I can give a couple of examples.

I knew a really friendly, nice guy and his wife. Over time I realized that the guy was an abuser. I watched the behavior of the couple and when I could see that they were building themselves up to a conflict I told the woman that when her husband beat her she could come over to my place and he couldn't get at her there. He beat her. She showed up. She was a very nice person and if she hadn't been such a screwed up drunk when she started walking around naked I might have done something. I didn't and I think that offended her. I think she had expected my offer was more than safety and help.

When her husband showed up, as they always do, he accused us of sleeping together (which we weren't) and then made a sudden movement holding something shinny (a Zippo lighter) in his hand. Being trained the way I am, and with him knowing I had been trained in martial arts and in the Army, showing up at my door angry and making a sudden move with a metallic object should have been something he was smart enough not to do. Anyhow, he ended up on the ground. I didn't hurt him. I doubt if I even bruised him because I realized it was a lighter.

She left and went back with him. She ended up dead less than a year later. He died back in 2007.

People do not always make what we think of as good choices. Those choices always belong to the individual. Only screwed up control freaks want to force everyone to make what they consider as the “right” decision.

When I was a child my mother was pretty radical politically for a child of the 1920's. She and a friend of hers once explained to me that “right” wing people were people who wanted to force others to make the “right” choices.

Over the years I have learned that it is fascists who try to force people to make the "right" decisions. Not Republicans or Democrats or any specific political party or ideology. Fascist is derived from the Latin “To Make”. It is a term coined by Mussolini to describe one of the Marxist political steps necessary for the conversion to a Communist society. The proletariat will not act on their own. They must be guided into violent revolution. They must be forced to accept Communism by a benevolent dictatorship and then there will be a withering away of the State.

The terms Fascist, Fascism, is an attempt by Mussolini to describe the time period where Communism is forced on the proletariat.

Capitalism describes the open market idea. Capitalism is more related to democracy since it depends on individual decisions.

Capitalism only works properly in Open Markets where the playing field is level and everyone is equal. Advertising is a method of controlling perception and skewing the playing field. Politics and closing specific markets is another way of creating an un-level playing field. When something happens to give one person/group much more control of a specific resource than any other group Capitalism is no longer Democratic, it becomes Fascist.

Controlling the choices people can make through laws, advertising, hoarding, monopolizing, propagandizing is all fascism. It does not matter if the fascism is intended to “help” or “hurt”. The thought does not count. The intent does not count. What matters is the end result, "are you deliberately trying to control other people"?

My intent with my blogs is to educate people. I do not attempt to control, I constantly suggest that people should do their own research and make their own decisions.

Just like the decision Kelly made to go back into a situation that could only result with her eventual death your decisions are yours to make. My decisions are mine to make no matter how horrid you or anyone else may think they are. We need to be able to accept those decisions without judging people no matter how screwed up our individual perceptions make them seem to us.

Christ gave us the ultimate example of sacrifice when Christ allowed people to break the commandments of God by crucifying him. Christ could have forced people not to break that commandment. Christ offered salvation to us by showing us that even the worst we could do to each other could be forgiven by God. By the crucifixion and the shedding of blood and the relinquishing of control over us God gave us the ability to choose to follow the example of Christ. Through the resurrection God proved that the choices we made really don't matter because they can be easily overcome, even unto death.

The resurrection is awesome because it is the only way to prove that the actions of those who came against Christ were impotent without taking away the free will choice of those who committed the atrocity of the crucifixion.

Christ chose to educate. Christ chose not to control. I hope I always make the same choice in my life.

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