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The Etymological Animal Must Slip Out of the Cage of Habit to Grasp Truth

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Tap roots of a wild Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg.)
Tap roots of a wild Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg.)
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Etymology - from Greek, etymos, true, real, actual (the study of roots)

By Edward Curtin

Life is full of slips.

Words slip out of our mouths to surprise us. Thoughts slip into our minds to shock us. Dreams slip into our nights to sometimes slip into our waking thoughts to startle us. And, as the wonderful singer/songwriter Paul Simon, sings, we are always "slip sliding away," a reminder that can be a spur to courage and freedom or an inducement to fear and shut-upness.

Slips are double-edged.

It is obvious that since September 11, 2001, and more so since the coronavirus lockdowns and the World Economic Forum's push for a Fourth Industrial Revolution that will lead to the marriage of artificial intelligence, cyborgs, digital technology, and biology, that the USA and other countries have been slipping into a new form of fascist control. Or at least it should be obvious, especially since this push has been accompanied by massive censorship by technology companies of dissenting voices and government crackdowns on what they term "domestic terrorists." Dissent has become unpatriotic and worse - treasonous.

Unless people wake up and rebel in greater numbers, the gates of this electronic iron cage will quietly be shut.

In the name of teleological efficiency and reason, as Max Weber noted more than a century ago in The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, capitalist elites, operating from within the shadows of bureaucratic castles such as The World Economic Forum (WEF), the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), The World Bank (WBG), The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Google, Facebook, the National Security Agency (NSA), the CIA, etc., - run by people whose faces are always well hidden - have been using digital technology to exert increasing control over the thoughts and actions of people worldwide. They have been doing this not only by diktats but by manufacturing social habits - customary usages - through which they exert their social power over populations. This linguistic and ideational propaganda is continually slipped into the daily "news" by their mainstream-media partners in crime. They become social habits that occupy people's minds and lead to certain forms of behavior. Ideas have consequences but also histories because humans are etymological animals - that is, their ideas, beliefs, and behaviors have histories. It is not just words that have etymologies.

When Weber said "a polar night of icy darkness" was coming in the future, he was referring to what is happening today. Fascism usually comes on slowly as history has shown. It slips in when people are asleep.

John Berger, commenting on the ghostly life of our received ideas whose etymology is so often lost on us, aptly said:

Our totalitarianism begins with our teleology.

And the teleology in use today is digital technology controlled by wealthy elites and governments for social control. For years they have been creating certain dispositions in the general public, as Jacques Ellul has said, "by working spells upon them and exercising a kind of fascination" that makes the public receptive to the digital life. This is accomplished slowly in increments, as permanent dispositions are established by slipping in regular reminders of how wonderful the new technology is and how its magical possibilities will make life so free and easy. Efficient. Happiness machines. A close study of the past twenty-five years would no doubt reveal the specifics of this campaign. In The Technological Society, Ellul writes:

... the use of certain propaganda techniques is not meant to entail immediate and definite adhesion to a given formula, but rather to bring about a long-range vacuity of the individual. The individual, his soul massaged, emptied of his natural tendencies, and thoroughly assimilated to the group, is ready for anything. Propaganda's chief requirement is not so much to be rational, well-grounded, and powerful as it is to produce individuals especially open to suggestion who can easily be set into motion.

Once this softening up has made people "available," the stage is set to get them to act impulsively. Ellul again:

It operates by simple pressure and is often contradictory (since contradictory mass movements are sometimes necessary). Of course, this dissociation can be effective only after the propaganda technique has been fused with the popular mores and has become indispensable to the population. This stage may be reached quickly, as, for example, in Germany in 1942, after only ten years of psychic manipulation.

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Edward Curtin is a widely published author. His new book is Seeking Truth in A Country of Lies - https://www.claritypress.com/product/seeking-truth-in-a-country-of-lies/ His website is http://edwardcurtin.com/

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