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You are being manipulated because purposeful social change without a common good caveat is a form of social evil

… Continued from Part 1

“The gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom nor our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile.” (Robert Kennedy, 1968).

We live in a manipulated, failed economic system where unregulated capitalism (in the absence of anything better) rules the day. But we are manipulated into believing that this failed system is the best economical solution. It is, however, a system where a small privileged few are rich beyond conscience, and almost all others are doomed to be poor at some level.

We want our children to have a better education, and they are getting it. The current generation has more tertiary qualifications than ever before. We have more experts, less judgment and more problems. This is probably because education is presented as a means of obtaining wealth rather than as an altruistic pursuit that might make humankind better.

The current Morrison cabinet has more degrees from the best schools globally, but their governance has been pathetic. Yet, their party has now won the past three elections. Why? Because they know how to manipulate you.

I call it ‘manipulated competitive capitalism.

We now live in a society where science is only respected to the point where it conflicts with profit. Then the conservative right, together with vested media interests, manipulates facts and distorts the truth to discredit them.

The environment is but one area where we are manipulated by uncredentialled fools who tell us that science knows nothing.

By people like John Howard, said he would instead rely on his instinct than scientific evidence. It was probably his instinct that sent us to war in Iraq. A decision that certainly wasn’t evidence-based.

Now I wonder what price the people of tomorrow will pay for the stupidity of today’s environmental vandals. We have allowed ourselves to become so manipulated that we have lost any commitment to the use of critical reason, factual evidence, and scientific methods of inquiry as to the best way of providing solutions to human problems.

The ability of thinking human beings to blindly embrace what they are being told without referring to evaluation and the consideration of scientific fact, truth and reason, never ceases to amaze me. It is tantamount to the rejection of rational explanation.

We would be a much better society if we took the risk of thinking for ourselves, rather than allowing ourselves to be manipulated and obstructed by the unadulterated crap served up by the media, self-interest groups and arguably the worst government Australia has ever had.

Politicians manipulate truth because power is all-important. They have lost any semblance of public morality and duty to the collective common good. And we have seen how they will even manipulate racial hatred if it advances their power.

Continued Thursday with… “You are being manipulated much more than you think”

My thought for the day

The common good should be at the centre of any political philosophy. However, it is more likely to be found on the left than the right.

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17 comments

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  1. Phil Pryor

    Education is really self education, a journey, not a destination with assured results. Jack Howard, mentioned here, invites comment, even at risk of attracting censorship, for he underwent a type of fuhrer conversion at the age of sensitivity, with the death of his father, and he seemed to fixate on a need to be worthy, ultimately and successfully noticed, to justify existence, overcome fears and doubts, thrust back perhaps at low opinions of his value. He had an iron hard attitude to outbursts, being noticed, resisting close scrutiny, friendships, investigation, challenge, with a core of righteousness of one who may have felt chosen, gifted, blessed, selected and being, (then currently) entirely misunderstood as he was obviously a magnificent prospect. Debating “saved” him, for he realised you could contrive, weave, thrust and conjure without any restraint in truth, fact, even any burden of proof or responsibility. So law suddenly appealed as a career, but to be a stepping stone to an invulnerability he needed. So, it was appearance, face, front and bluff, triumphal, invulnerable, eternally “correct” because you can get away with any shit if your are popeish, fuhrerlike, imperious, dictatorial and above science, logic, “law”. reason, and dangerous challenge, Amazingly for one who was an inflated mediocrity, he made it work by nagging persistence, unreasonable indifference, righteous magnificence,plus cronies, donors, sponsors, leeches, actual workers in the cause. Having such a leader, and he is one of many, has been highly detrimental, even injurious to this nation and its people.A rubber blowup doll, over inflated is no Caesar, Napoleon, FDR or Churchill (his middle name is Winston). Never, ever. Yet he strutted around the quad as a lad, proclaiming to the captain and others that he would become our great leader.., and he got up there…

  2. Harry Lime

    And who better to spread this hokum than the Great Pretender?Winning elections is all,no matter the cost to the future of our descendants.This cretin is a walking ,talking narcissist..a clear and present danger,and judging by the Hunter by election,we have yet to hit rock bottom.

  3. wam

    A recurring thought, lord?
    Science knows that climate change is natural, lord, do you?
    ps
    Loved the by election only the loonies maintained their vote <1k.
    Nats 11k exhausted 10k and labor 9k getting close to first past the post and how will labor go when that kicks in?

  4. Ross

    John Lord, I must take issue with your statement ‘arguably the worst government Australia has ever had’. There is no argument. It’s the worst of any government in the 70+ thousand years of human habitation of this island continent. The Rum Corps were complete novices compared to the current lot.
    What’s worse is these over educated cretins are an even money bet to get re-elected.

  5. Stephengb

    John you say (rightly)
    “We live in a manipulated, failed economic system where unregulated capitalism (in the absence of anything better) rules the day. But we are manipulated into believing that this failed system is the best economical solution. It is, however, a system where a small privileged few are rich beyond conscience, and almost all others are doomed to be poor at some level”.

    This documentary really does encapsulate the last 45 years of manipulation.

    https://thoughtmaybe.com/this-is-neoliberalism/

  6. guest

    John, you say we are being manipulated and therefore we should think for ourselves. And there is the rub: how do we avoid the external manipulation but create our own crazy deceptions?
    If we look at IPA publications about climate change they tell us that IPCC is a failed hypothesis, and gathering more data will show that climate change is the result of natural cycles and nothing to worry about. Meanwhile, as the editors of the IPA publication tell us, the collections of essays is full of contradictions and anomalies as they try to prove their “cycles” hypothesis.
    Alan Moran, of the IPA, tells us: “Contrary to assertions, the deleterious effects sometimes mentioned have not taken place: There has been no increase in hurricanes, bushfires or other natural disasters, no rise in the oceans, icecaps are not melting, polar ice communities are flourishing and as all Australians will be aware, the dams are full when activists claimed this would never happen again.” (The Australian”, 22/4/2021)
    The problem with this propaganda is that it is not true. As David Winchester said of Richard Koonin, another denier, it might sound reasonable, but the “willful damage” of climate change we see around us is real.
    And of course the bit here from Moran about the dams not filling is the misinformation about what Tim Flannery did not say (2007) conveyed by propagandists who never forget their own mistakes.
    Check also the propaganda promoted by Bjorn Lomborg about trying to reduce climate change being too expensive and we should solve other problems now because in the future we will be so rich we will be able to “adapt” at a far smaller cost. Really?
    Information debunking the propaganda and misinformation we are told about climate changeis to be found if we look. The trouble is, it takes time. But the usual suspects emerge over time and their propaganda can be seen for what it is. If still in doubt, look at desmogblog.com.

  7. Keith

    guest

    The problem with debunking what the denialists of climate change say is that the same debunked arguments are continually promoted. Sometimes what they suggest is partially true, such as, the climate has always changed. That is the extent of their argument; dig deeper and climate has never changed at the rate it is currently changing, and greenhouse gases were changing climate in the past depending on the amount of greenhouse gases.

    A couple of weeks ago a Crikey article was about young people taking the “government” to the Federal Court in relation to lack of action on climate change. Lawyers acting for the “government” acknowledged that there had been over a 1C increase in global temperature since the Industrial Revolution. Here is the rub … the “government” is arguing through their lawyers that they have no responsibility for young people or future generations. Choose your own expletives.

    Quote from “government lawyers:
    “Since 1910, Australia’s climate has warmed by just over 1°C, and the surface temperature of oceans around Australia have warmed by around 1°C. Consistent with global trends, eight of the 10 warmest years on record in Australia have occurred since 2005 … The observed changes in the earth’s climate are caused by increased greenhouse gases (GHG) … The main contributor to that observed growth in atmospheric carbon dioxide is emissions from burning fossil fuels, including coal, oil and gas … Some further warming of the Australian climate is unavoidable. ….”

    And:
    “In short, the government admits climate change driven by coalmining will harm Australians, but it has no legal responsibility to stop expansions in coalmining because that would require the government to actually protect future Australians.”

    Government admits coal = catastrophic climate change, but no legal duty to stop mines

  8. Gangstas Paradise

    “Now I wonder what price the people of tomorrow will pay for the stupidity of today’s environmental vandals.”

    Well John Lord, Australia will become the southern hemisphere’s Cuba.

    Thanks to Angus Taylor and his absolute need for a petrol driven car (he says he drives 65k- 75k a year) and a battery operated car just wouldn’t cut it.

    So fossil fuel driven cars will be dumped in Australia for the next decade.

  9. ajogrady

    Democracy is being gamed and played to benefit big business. If businesses pay large amounts of money to “influencers” to gain advantage over their competition then how much is the influence of the media outlets of Murdoch, 7 and 9 worth to the L/NP? Advertising with these media outlets should be counted as political donations to the L/NP.

  10. Josephus

    It is obvious that capitalism in no more compatible with democracy or liberals than was or is communism. China has embraced capitalism because its one party state knows that a history of starvation meant that for the citizens slavery was a price worth paying in return for having enough to eat and access to consumer goods.

    Capitalism controlled by a one party state ensures compliance. In Australia too the promise of lower taxes ensures that greed wins out over the freedom to think and to question.

  11. guest

    Keith, “If the law thinks that then the law is an ass” was something said a long time ago.
    We can see why climate deniers are so upset by someone like Greta Thunberg, an eighteen year old student who is making deniers look very ignorant.
    As well, I am very concerned about young people, like my grandchildren, so many of whom under normal circumstances could live beyond the end of this century. They are being let down by a bunch of denier politicians who are not even responsible for present citizens, let alone citizens of the future.
    Perhaps it has something to do with the intervention of the Rapture imagined to occur in the near future. I was told only last night in our city that Jesus is coming soon!

  12. DrakeN

    “Simples”, as my grandkids used to put it – we have been, are being and always will be subjected to exploitation by competent confidence tricksters.

    As for becoming “… the southern hemisphere’s Cuba.” that might be somewhat desirable when you look at their society as distinct from their lack of economic wealth.
    Free education of world beating quality;
    Free medical services of the highest standard;
    Political and social stability;
    High levels of community cohesion;
    Little commercial exploitation;
    And lots of classic motorcars 🙂

    Without the embargos imposed by the USofA, Cuba could have been very successful economically, too.

  13. Stephengb

    Manipulation (exploitation) is a feature of every society where the few are seen as deserving whereas the many undeserving.

    When oh when will the masque of anarchy be unleashed

    “Rise, like lions after slumber
    In unvanquishable number!
    Shake your chains to earth like dew
    Which in sleep had fallen on you:
    Ye are many—they are few!”

    The Masque of Anarchy 1819 – Percy Bysshe Shelley

  14. Wam

    Keith, The deniers, like us, know climate changes naturally. They, unlike us, deny man is a factor. They are unwilling to attribute the recent and accelerated changes as being sourced in man’s returning greenhouse gases, in 200 years, that nature took billions of years to sequester. Talk reality: greenhouse gases = greenhouse effect = disaster for life on earth, as it is on Venus.
    ps DrakeN the septics did the same to Vietnam out of spite.

  15. DrakeN

    wam, Venezuela has suffered similarly; Chile got Pinochet courtesy of the CIA; Australia lost its most progressive government in 1975 likewise, but with the help of British Royalty and the rest of their establishment; et-bluddy-cetera.

  16. New England Cocky

    @ John Lord:I call it ‘manipulated competitive capitalism.‘

    I call it socialised capitalism, share to losses with the public and keep the profiits for the bosses.

    There is little doubt that the underlying strategy id for the Liarbral Nazional$ to make Australia the worst export economy in the OECD.

  17. Williambtm

    Mr. John Lord, your advice please? Given the judgment handed down to Susan Ley, Minister Australia’s Environment, including all its waters (the whole of the continent of Australia) I hope to be satisfied that this admonitive legal precedent will be black-inked into the all-time annals of Australia?

    Also, I agree with your given “We live in a manipulated, failed economic system where unregulated capitalism (in the absence of anything better)
    is in itself quite a profound and decidedly accurate assessment.

    My question; do you believe the above judgment provides the scope for additional “whole of the continent Australia” challenges relative to further acts of negligences & including failures resultant from and within Australia’s policy and agenda lacking L/NP party government?

    Below is the full text accompanying the above landmark decision as was handed down by the court.

    “E.G. It is difficult to characterise in a single phrase the devastation that the plausible evidence presented in this proceeding forecasts for the children. As Australian adults know their country, Australia will be lost and the world as we know it gone as well.

    The physical environment will be harsher, far more extreme and devastatingly brutal when angry. As for the human experience – quality of life, opportunities to partake in nature’s treasures, the capacity to grow and prosper – all will be greatly diminished.

    Lives will be cut short. Trauma will be far more common and good health harder to hold and maintain.

    None of this will be the fault of nature itself. It will largely be inflicted by the inaction of this generation of adults, in what might fairly be described as the greatest inter-generational injustice ever inflicted by one generation of humans upon the next.

    To say that the children are vulnerable is to understate their predicament.”

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