The Sociopathic Society: 1
The idea I am about to propose is not fundamentally a new one and many people including myself have previously written about the issues involved, but mostly in a peripheral manner. However few writers, if any, have dared to point the central issue- largely because it is so unpleasant to admit.
Have you ever considered the possibility that post-WW2 “civilized” western societies are actually sociopathic systems masquerading as just and benevolent entities?
Note that I said ‘sociopathic’ not ‘cruel’, ‘barbaric’, ‘unjust’ or ‘unequal’. The reasons behind my choice of that particular word will be clearer as you read this post.
Human history shows us that societies, civilizations and “nations” which are deeply fucked up, sadistic, barbaric, repressive and otherwise overtly repulsive are rather common. They however differed from contemporary post-WW2 western societies in one fundamental way.
They did not pretend to be just, fair, nice, decent or caring!
One could argue that west-European societies, especially anglo-saxon ones, did exhibit the beginnings of sociopathy as early as the mid-1800s. However even at the height of their pre-WW2 hypocrisy it was common knowledge to even the most illiterate villager in any given colony that west-Europeans were greedy human scum.
But WW1 and then WW2 changed things.. A combination of technological developments and the aftereffects of these wars made it clear to everyone with more than half a brain that the old ways were unworkable. It is no coincidence that the modern model of a supposedly caring and benevolent state which provided for its “own people” came into being after WW2 and under the threat of communism. But old ways of perceiving the world die hard. The supposedly caring, just and benevolent society was a mask for the ugly human mind underneath it. A lot of the hostility, savagery and repressiveness got sublimated into general society giving us the dystopia we live in today.
Though modern western societies frequently proclaim that they are good, just, fair and decent institutions- it is now becoming obvious to many that they are not what they fervently claim to be. And that is my point- They have become systems that try to rule via polished deception, scams, fraud and propaganda. This hallmark of sociopathy is especially obvious When you look at how they treat individuals who trust them and work for them.
Consider the following..
1. “Law and Order” is supposed to protect the rule-abiding citizen from criminals. How does that work in practice? Most of the people currently in jail or probation are small time crooks or unfortunate people. How often do you see supremely corrupt people caught, let alone prosecuted or jailed?
But isn’t it supposed to protect you from thugs who want to steal your stuff or harm you? Isn’t that all of main-stream media keeps on telling you? Isn’t that what society keeps on telling you even when it is clearly not the case. Contrast this to old monarchies or dictatorships which seldom tried to hide the real reason behind ‘law and order’ which has always been repression and assisting the rent seekers.
2. Consider banks and other financial institutions. Modern western societies portray them to as fair, “legal” and objective handlers of money. But is that true? Aren’t they just officially sanctioned oligopolies who lend money they don’t have to collect money obtained through real work? And what is with nickel and dimming their customers and trying to screw them over with ‘gotcha’ clauses. Then there is the issue of differential conditions for lending whereby a well-connected conman can get and default on millions or billions while they chase some guys who took a student loan for a four year degree from some state university.
But western societies portrays their banks as well-meaning, decent and law abiding- even when the converse is true. Society will cover all loses incurred by banks who conned everybody else while treating the average citizens as indentured laborers who were trying to con the banks.
3. Have a look at the medical systems, private or public, in western countries. Why are they so inefficient and expensive? Why doesn’t increasing expenditure improve outcomes and patient sanctification? Some of you might think of doctors as poor souls doing a thankless job for moderate wages. But is that true? Isn’t the medical profession really about making ever-increasing amounts of money from sick and dying people regardless of the outcomes? You might have noticed that western doctors don’t like less expensive competition. Is it about protecting the patient or their income stream? Are they really so good and the others really so bad?
But everywhere you look physicians are glorified by society as selfless heroes who will move heaven and earth to help their patients. How can societies act as if plainly observable reality is false?
4. Society portrays corporations as job creators, but who really creates jobs? Doesn’t demand for a product or service by consumers who happen to have money create jobs? But contemporary western society seems to forget that and portrays people who spend as stupid and impulsive while glorifying those who “save” money thereby removing it from public circulation. Who will buy stuff or services if everybody saves lots of money? and where are the jobs to redistribute that money come from, especially in our era of outsourcing and automation?
While some of the more socialistic countries are more restrained in their praise and adulation of corporations, there is no mistaking the general attitude of western societies towards them, which can be summed up as- corporations are almost always right unlike the median citizen.
5. The educational system in western countries is another class of protected holy cows who can do no wrong. But does the current educational setup facilitate any learning- other than teaching students how to kiss ass and follow the herd? Now that may be the real reason behind their existence, but why are those in the system and society so unwilling to call them out on the con? How can the majority of people go on blathering about improving our schools and universities when their very existence is the real problem?
You can look at the few examples I have given above in isolation and see them as individual problems. But is that really the case? Aren’t they the small-scale outcomes of a larger phenomena- namely that modern western societies have become slick, unscrupulous and dishonest systems who constantly and loudly preach something while setting up things to generally do the opposite of what is advertised?
Isn’t the relationship of contemporary western societies with citizens functionally identical to the one between a sociopath and his/her victim.
What do you think? Comments?