A cornucopia of intellectual Onanism

Rookwood, Going Postal
Allegory of Fortune (1658) by Salvator Rosa, representing Fortuna, the Goddess of luck, with the horn of plenty
Getty Center / Public domain

I’m quite sure there are a few readers at Going Postal who get frustrated with my writing style, or indeed any commentator who dares stray from the rugged pathway of the dry as dust academic or scientific treatise. Part of the appeal of being a proficient writer is that you can attach a human face to just about any subject matter, in a similar way that a redundant piece of furniture can be restored with the liberal application of some Fablon. In that sense, your author is required to be a Jack of all trades and master of none, as you would very quickly become bored with me rattling on in the same vein like a decrepit Victor Meldrew on steroids. Indeed, there is a limited audience for my “Speciality subjects”, and to be honest, most of my knowledge is probably out of date now. I come from the generation that was fascinated with crystal radio sets, OC71 transistors and NE555 integrated circuit timers. My value as a commentator, observer and all round faecal matter stirrer is not necessarily to be accurate to the nth decimal point, but to be sufficiently on point with the Zeitgeist to guide the reader in the direction of thinking for themselves and making their own mind up. I do my level best to see both sides of the argument, yet am not so lily-livered as not to have a strong and unwavering opinion. I may disagree with you vehemently, but I will respect you no less for that. Indeed, if you can persuade me to accept your point of view, I will probably become your strongest ally. Like all honourable individuals, I am on the pathway of truth and self discovery, and I don’t always get it right. That is the beauty of being able to grow as an individual, you never stop learning. Even when you are wrong.

So I must thank those at GP who have clearly being sending me positive vibes of late. I have been struggling on a number of fronts, and the death of the final therapeutic straw for me is when you are faced with a blank word-processor screen and cannot summon the courage to write. Part writers block, part deep depression as to where we are at, for someone who generally doesn’t have any problem communicating via the written word, it is an extremely uncomfortable place to be. It is a bit like getting up in the morning and not knowing how to dress yourself. Yes, I have a number of part-written articles on the back boiler, but they are very “Deep” and the personal emotional cost to finish them will be high. I will need some sunshine and a stronger constitution to wrap them up. That is for another day though. Meanwhile, inspired by the comments that nobody reads, I’d like to briefly touch on one of the more interesting consequences of democracy and globalisation, the rush towards a singularity, or more accurately, the forceful and violent polarisation that is occurring in society, particularly in the West.

Politics, in essence, is one giant Mandelbrot diagram. The deeper you dig, the more often the same pattern appears, only to suddenly transform into something completely different. On and on it goes, until you are back at the beginning again, albeit with different coordinates. The same corruption, malfeasance, greed and ignorance lives on as was portrayed in Hogarthian satirical art from the 18th century. Of these deadly sins, ignorance is probably the least forgivable in the current information age. Or is it? The major difficulty is establishing the provenance or indeed the motive behind the “Information” served. Take Hogarth for instance. Would he have achieved the same level of fame and fortune had he not been a Mason? On one hand, this is irrelevant, as many individuals who have been kind, benevolent, and brought much needed change to society, have belonged to this secret society. On the other hand, if he had not been a Mason, would he have been enable to exert the power and influence on society that his works commanded? Likewise, I am sure there are many good, decent police officers (amongst others) in the Masons. I should know, I was invited to join this, by invitation only, organisation. I politely declined, as I did Mensa. Who knows what power or influence I could have summoned if I had chosen not to? As the old saying goes, it is not what you know, it is who you know. More succinctly though, it is not knowledge per se that is the currency, but perceived wisdom and understanding. This is the common denominator that gains you entry into the hallowed realms of the movers and shakers, the real corridors of power. Provided you can at least pretend you understand and respect the group values, you are in. Once inside the all encompassing embrace, you don’t even have to try. Depending on the ethos of the particular group, you will either be promoted out of the way or your life made so difficult you depart, albeit with the sword of Damocles resting upon your head. The same rules apply be it local government, a blue chip or the local church. You are either with us or against us. Dare raise a fingernail against the current orthodoxy, ask pertinent questions out of turn or most damning of all, point out the elephant in the room, and your card is marked. No matter how “Ethical” the organisation is, your “Wisdom” will not be appreciated.

All around us, the traditional values of rich and poor, left and right, right and wrong are being socially and morally re-engineered to mean completely different values from what they once did. A single mother on welfare can now hold her head up high, her nest well-feathered, provided she came from the right generation. Rather than living on benefits and being a homemaker, she will now have to go to work, leaving a child parent-less on the one hand and ruthlessly exploited by a politicised education system that will indoctrinate, rather than teach, on the other. The age of quality housing for lone mothers has long gone. That is just one glaring example of the unintended consequences of the excesses of the welfare state, once the pendulum swings the other way. We now have multiple generations of women that don’t want children and men who don’t want to commit to long term relationships as just looking at at a woman with lust in your eyes is considered “Hateful“. The age old process of “Divide and conquer” has riven such deep divisions in our society that we no longer have any thought or indeed care for future generations. Or to be blunt, a child is the parents problem, a bastard, societies problem.

What has happened here is very simple. As Nietzsche predicted, the enlightenment and the death of “God” in the classical sense has led to mankind inventing “Sacred games”. The never ending cycle of the Mandelbrot left-right paradigm has ended up with countless new “Religions”, be it the environment, gender rights, welfare reform or just the desire to stay in a European dictatorship or indeed, leave one. The fragmentation of any cohesive society is relentless. Everything is now redefined as “What you believe” rather than “What you are”. Millions of words are spent persuading, cajoling, demanding worship at the new cathedral that houses no god, but contains in spirit, the souls of those sacrificed at the altar of the values of humanism. As the division continues, each group develops its own language, values and ethics. Blue hair? OK. Beards? Uh no. The supreme irony is that that those who should have defended Nietzsche, the Christian church, damned him to hell on the basis of a single quotation taken out of context ergo that “God is dead”. The life of Brian is another good example. Some people take things far too seriously. If God doesn’t have a sense of humour, I’m screwed. He made me, after all.

I’ve discovered the rational for all this ongoing COVID nonsense. If you take this perspective, you will be in a better position to cope with the absurdity. Look upon it as a new religion, and it all begins to come into focus and make sense. The worship, the instant offence, the blank looks and shunning of “Non-believers”. The crossing the street to avoid heretics. The fear. The control. The judgemental “I am right – you are wrong”. Most subtly of all, the ongoing pressure of jumping from the great ship consumerism to the sinking dinghy of austerity and dictatorship. Debt is dead, and there is not many lifeboats around. The reckoning is upon us, and not many are ready to swim. All the lies, the bullshit, are about to float to the surface, and when they do, there will be a global anger unrivalled in any time in history. Unless of course, the momentum of fear carries on unabated, continuing the paralysis. For ultimately, we are looking at a separation of the sheep and the goats. As a species, we are facing unparalleled challenges, and the time for keeping the source of our hidden light is indeed very short. Not only we will have to account for it, we may well have to die for it, should the conditions for an extreme dictator emerge. If you look in your bible, God hates religion. As do I. For all these false gods, these disparate man-made temples to right and wrong, as time will ultimately prove, are all are just a cornucopia of intellectual Onanism.

© Rookwood 2020

The Goodnight Vienna Audio file