The mental plane of intellect recognises the individual’s ‘right of opinion’ since opinions evolve from infinite combinations of circumstance and upbringing. Unfortunately communities with multiple conflicting opinions tend to be chaotic - a principle well known to political and military leaders who apply the principle ‘to divide is to rule’.
On the intuitive plane of right action, universal truths are buried deep within the feeling mode of human sentiment - a knowing inside that bubbles up in a feeling that things are not right. Poverty in developed countries is not right; prejudices that maim, kill and incarcerate are not right; processes that divide communities are not right. Collectively this ‘knowing’ is expressed in group sentiments that are arbitrated by democratic processes.
But are our elections really democratic when governments and their corporate masters know that society’s ‘feelings’ can be divided and distorted by the promotion of inflammatory public debate? As sides coalesce around opinions, arguments become heated and concepts of equality get lost in the rhetoric.
Meanwhile the feeling that ‘I should be happier’ pervades for vague background issues of health, material sufficiency, security, alienation, fear and unfulfilled potential.
The Technology Revolution of the late 19th Century accelerated the growth of our consumer based, material culture by way of innovations surrounding oil products and the development of internal combustion engines; the manufacturing of steel and alloys; the building of railroads; the use of chemicals; and the development of electrical engineering, which in turn led to global communications.
The intervening period between there and now has seen a Great Depression, two world wars, and the expansion of commerce into a global matrix that has taken control of governments with its unquestionable assumption that economic growth supports ‘The Wealth of Nations’. Forgotten is the understanding that ‘true wealth’ resides in personal growth and in communities that support personal growth while providing safe nurturing environments that downsize the killing effect of fear.
‘This fear factor breeds more violence, mental illness and trauma, social disintegration, job failure, loss of workers’ rights,
and much more. Pervasive fear ultimately paves the way for an accelerating authoritarian society with increased police power, legally
codified oppression, invasion of privacy, social controls, social anxiety and PTSD.’ - Alternet: Fear Dominates Politics, Media
and Human Existence in America—And It’s Getting Worse
‘This fear factor breeds more violence, mental illness and trauma, social disintegration, job failure, loss of workers’ rights, and much more. Pervasive fear ultimately paves the way for an accelerating authoritarian society with increased police power, legally codified oppression, invasion of privacy, social controls, social anxiety and PTSD.’ - Alternet: Fear Dominates Politics, Media and Human Existence in America—And It’s Getting Worse
The capitalist system has become the imprint upon which our future development is layered and in the process inequality has been promoted by a propaganda of blame. The 21st Century has seen capitalist structures of power, wealth and inequality, rise to their zenith - a zenith that has reached the point where global debt cannot be paid back through the capitalist process of economic growth.
Perhaps this is where we need to be, since the point of no return is the phoenix of paradigm shift; a realisation that collective lifestyle choices for the future should be built on foundations of humanitiiarian well-being, along with a dutiful respect for the myriad life forms that exist on our living planet.
Governments must now accept the community’s feeling that something is not right, and shift their platforms towards regulating productive employment, generating shared rewards, taking responsibility for environmental outcomes and generally shifting society towards a higher state of consciousness and interconnectivity. It’s time to build new platforms based on human needs - for work, for play, creativity, health, happiness, family and friends.
The 21st Century has already experienced a financial meltdown created by unscrupulous investors; followed by inequality uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Syria, Bahrain; as well as protests in non-Arab countries brought about by political corruption, human rights, economic decline, unemployment and poverty – all indicative of inequalities that have been badly addressed by governments who don’t have consensus support and don’t deal with root causes.
The sales pitch of economic growth is the simplistic notion of happiness being contained in hierarchical levels of ownership. The wings of capitalistic triumph are built on the fantasy tales of promotional advertisements beckoning delusionary personal goals that are unattainable for most, while leaving an exalted few with a dubious prize and the dilemma of turning it into something meaningful.
In the 21st Century we don’t need economic growth; we need the creation of infrastructures that recognise the gamut of human endeavour and provide avenues of recompense such that money is recycled, growth is related to wellbeing and the planet benefits from our presence.
Franklin D. Roosevelt: Presidential Acceptance Speech (1936): A Rendezvous with Destiny
‘For to many of us the political equality we once had won was meaningless in the face of economic inequality. A small group had concentrated into their own hands an almost complete control over other people's property, other people's money, other people's labour - other people's lives. For too many of us life was no longer free; liberty no longer real; men could no longer follow the pursuit of happiness.’...
‘These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power. In vain they seek to hide behind the flag and the Constitution. In their blindness they forget what the flag and the Constitution stand for. Now, as always, they stand for democracy, not tyranny; for freedom, not subjection; and against a dictatorship by mob rule and the over-privileged alike.’...
‘We are poor indeed if this nation cannot afford to lift from every recess of American life the dread fear of the unemployed that they are not needed in the world’...
‘...here in America we are waging a great and successful war. It is not alone a war against want and destitution and economic demoralization. It is more than that; it is a war for the survival of democracy. We are fighting to save a great and precious form of government for ourselves and for the world.’
Henry George, Progress and Poverty:
‘I propose to beg no question, to shrink from no conclusion, but to follow truth wherever it may lead. Upon us is the responsibility of seeking the law...If the conclusions that we reach run counter to our prejudices, let us not flinch; if they challenge institutions that have long been deemed wise and natural, let us not turn back’
Wealth without work
Worship without sacrifice