Saturday, January 9, 2016

Culture-Wreckers and Culture Repair

It can be devilishly easy to wreck a culture, and devilishly hard to clean it up afterward.  If you want to wreck a culture, it helps to be very rich and to own most if not all of the main voices in the culture you want to wreck.  Those who have to clean up your mess afterward are usually people without a voice in the culture, and they find themselves facing the same set of issues, regardless of where the wreckage occurred.  So it is with those who have to deal with the messes made by the United States in various places.  For the Ukraine and Eastern Europe, the question is how to de-Nazify these places.  That Nazification took place over a period of several decades, amply funded both by neocon elements in the United States government and by some of its wealthiest citizens.  A key element of that Nazification was the wide dissemination of propaganda through various media outlets.  That process has resulted in a wrecked Eastern European country, and a number of other countries who have a dangerously inflated view of themselves, and who thus may no longer be able to live at peace with each other.  A similar process has taken place in Syria, where a culture has been partially wrecked by means of the funding of foreign rogues by the United States and its allies as they attempted to overthrow the government of President al-Assad.  The toxic culture created by the ISIS and al-Qaeda "moderate freedom fighters" funded by the U.S. and others has begun to damage even some Syrians.  It too was helped by American funded mass media.  The question, both in the Ukraine and in Syria, is how those who remain undamaged can clean up the toxic culture created in these places by foreign intervention.

But a similar question awaits those who seek to heal the culture of the United States.  For a lot of money, time and effort has gone into poisoning the culture of our nation.  Contrary to the propaganda many of us learned in grade school, the culture of the United States was never very virtuous.  But it seemed that during the late 1960's and 1970's, this country was stumbling toward the first grudging acknowledgement that all humans are created equal and ought to be treated as equal, regardless of race, creed, color, national origin, country of residence, or economic status.  However, there were people at that time who regarded such an acknowledgement to be an intolerable threat to their self-created identity as masters of everything, "more equal" than everyone else.  So these people began working to create a toxic culture which glorified the wealthy, the powerful, and the Anglo-American at everyone else's expense.  They began with people like Wally George and continued through the building of the radio empire of Rush Limbaugh and the rise of the media empire of Rupert Murdoch.  By now, their control over most of the organs of mainstream American media is nearly complete.  And they have done a really good job of poisoning the culture of this nation, having accomplished the revival of a sort of ugliness that hasn't existed since the Jim Crow days of the American South.

Cultural messes are created by people who want to legitimize the raw use of force to achieve selfish ends and to victimize the powerless.  And when cleaning up a mess, the first thing that must be done is to put a stop to whatever is making the mess.  If the pipes burst in your house and the floor gets flooded, it makes no sense to grab a mop and bucket until you've shut off the water.  Similarly, it may not be too useful to have public and private employers host "equity workshops" and "diversity trainings" for people who will simply turn around and sit in front of a propaganda-spewing TV set when they go home.  Maybe the first thing to do is to stop the river of sewage flowing from the outlets of mass media.

The thing is, it looks like that stoppage may be happening in the United States, and that it may be the result of the choice of an increasing number of people to get rid of the sewage outlet in their living room.  I've been reading lately about the increasing numbers of Americans who are going without TV, and the increasing number of households who do not even own a TV.  And while some analysts blame the decline in TV ownership on Internet entertainment and live movies, there are reports that revenues from online entertainment and live movies has also been dropping.  Here are a few links to what I'm talking about:
There's plenty more where that came from, but I'm sure you get the point.  These articles don't even touch the subject of the growing number of people who are not watching any kind of electronic media, or the increasing number of people who no longer go out to watch movies.  One of the primary means of wrecking a culture has been to buy up all the voices of mass dissemination of that culture.  But now, an increasing number of people in the culture are no longer listening to those voices.  The average age of the typical broadcast TV viewer is now over 50.  The empires of Rupert Murdoch and people like him are becoming less and less effective, and people are starting to engage each other in the face-to-face creation of cultures of their own.  This is a hopeful sign that a safe space may be opening for those who want to create healthy cultures.

Yet all is not rosy.  There are other ways of creating a cultural mess besides the use of legacy broadcast, cable and print networks, and these ways are being exploited by the supremacists who are behind the great American culture-wrecking project.  In the age of the Internet, our best weapon against such people and their tactics may well be to display an unwavering decency, both in realspace and in cyberspace.

1 comment:

Five Hundred Pound Peep said...

I'm waiting for the pendelum to swing on the "greed is good" and "materialism" is the great good paradigms [see smakintosh's video on my blog too I posted today]

Will the TRIUMPH of TRUMP wake people up if a sociopath extreme capitalist, is running the show?

Remember how in the 60s and 70s there was the whole home crafts and back to the land? Even that seems co-opted and only for the very rich now, like the foodies and local food movement types who sell home crafted jars of saukerkraut for 15 dollars and organic at home "chef" dinners for 80 dollar a pop. Fiver is an interesting place to look at at the sheer desperation of millennials and the dancing as fast as you can flavor. I worry that thinking people in America are too poor and beaten down and the rewards are only going to those who have sold out to the system.

I see the whole culture as being beyond repair. I meet thinkers who see through the system online but I get the feeling they are few and far between because I only meet the same "pod people" in every day life who believe in the system. By the way if you question said system even in the most mild of ways, they aren't too happy with you and I'm not just talking those of us who have left the churches but people who question the brainwash sessions from Fox news and CNN coming from the TVs.