On July 4, the people of the U.S. marked the passing of another year's perfunctory, Independence Day festivities. The date, also, was occasioned by the formal announcement from physicists at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) that, according to the banner headline at CERN's official website, "Higgs within reach ["] Our understanding of the universe is about to change ["] [Our] experiments see strong indications for the presence of a new particle, which could be the Higgs boson."
Thus, augur the smart people at CERN, a change in our fundamental understanding of the universe, and our place as human beings in it, is at hand. From their lips to the mouth of the God Particle, this development, if true, would be cause for celebration -- that a display of fireworks should be in order -- because of an embrace of the philosophical and social implications of this discovery could be the starting point of a profound form of independence: the release from ossified systems of thought and being, such as those dominating the present era, including the hagiography of U.S. Independence Day.
The people of the U.S. need independence from the demonstrably false notion, held by so many that within their debt-enslaved, corporate interest-beholden lives, they possess any degree of meaningful independence. As U.S. citizens, we are free to, without question, proclaim to the now credulous world how free we are-- but when a citizen resists and takes action (e.g., Bradley Manning) he will, in rapid order, grasp the true nature of this sweet land of liberty. As OWS activists have recently apprehended, under the present order, an individual is at liberty to practice freedom of speech, as long as by doing so, one does not threaten the agendas of the privileged and powerful.
Any fireworks tracing the night sky should be viewed as a demand for
the explosion of self-deception. Withal, the concept of independence,
clutched by so many under late U.S. empire, is loud and showy, but
ultimately evanescent and leaves one feeling empty at its conclusion"a
hollowness that traditional Forth of July fare, in the form of obscene
portions of hormone-injected, antibiotic-ridden, industrially
slaughtered, barbecue-charred animal flesh and beer (the true opiate of
the masses) can never sate.
The indicators strongly suggesting the existence of the Higgs Boson -- a particle that serves as a creator and connecting principle of (seemingly) disparate matter -- comes to us in an age, when the people of the U.S. seem unwilling or unable to connect the fact that greenhouse gases, emitted from the tailpipes of their automobiles idling at drive-thru windows of fast food outlets serving industrial bred, raised, hideously exploited, cruelly slaughtered, and carelessly processed animal flesh (an even larger contributor to Climate Chaos than the aforementioned automobiles' exhaust particles) are responsible for less than propitious changes to global climate patterns.
News of the Boson particle -- the so-called God Particle -- into public consciousness arrives, as well, at a time, when as Carl Jung aptly posited, "the gods have become diseases." In short, estranged gods (i.e., patterns of the human psyche that are analogs of terrestrial and cosmic patterns) invade the ego and reside therein as pathologies i.e., compulsions, depression, anxiety, addiction, because their purpose has been discarded and forgotten e.g., the recognition of the sacred quality of life and the evocation of the numinous through ritual. And mainly to bring to humankind the recognition that we, most definitely, are not gods ourselves"to the understanding that our mastery of fire and machine should not infect us with the hubris to believe we are the masters of the universe.
Moreover, we can start with a bit of humility regarding our relationship to the planet upon which we reside and depend on for our survival. The heat waves, droughts, wildfires, and super storms extant should serve as warning enough that there are forces larger than ourselves (that are beyond the control of our tiny, mad will) afoot in the world.
The existence of the Boson Particle would pose essential questions regarding the nature of interconnection and interdependence, cosmological and terrestrial, and our place, as a species, among the order of things. For example, through our hubris, we have conjured raging fires and rising sea levels. Ancient poets would have grasped and vehemently chanted tales of warning"that the gods of fire and the sea had taken offense at our arrogance.
We have reached an age when their metaphors are being made manifest.
Yet, give Americans the choice between freedom, art, and science or all-you-can-eat buffets and the viewing of Jersey Shore, and, well"they have already made their choice clear. Hence, we find ourselves, as a people, stranded in a howling wasteland of destiny deferred.
In a banana republic, there exists a vast stratification of wealth, wherein the middle and merchant classes have been conditioned to harbor little identification with the poor, but feel affinity, thus side with, an economic and military elite. In these societal structures, militarized police are used to quell dissent. The military is glorified and intellectuals are scorned. The function of the political class is to serve the status quo, and they are generally well rewarded for their efforts in behalf of their economic betters.
Any of this sound familiar?
Rather than bananas, we have fast food burgers (grass fed, free range variety, of course, for the minority endowed with economic privilege).
Would you like an order of fries (or, in the case of the latter class, an arugula salad) with your fascism?
Due to the consolidation of wealth and privilege into fewer and fewer hands, requiring escalating amounts of officially mandated surveillance and brutality to maintain social order, the natural trajectory of late stage capitalism tends towards hyper-authoritarian excess, even towards fascism.