- The dominant system, perhaps best thought of as an organism, cooperates with competing structures (viruses) by subsuming them rather than fighting them forever. Endogenous retroviruses are an excellent example of the system incorporating these new or “usurper” things into itself. The structure always remains, but the names and details can change.
- Martin Luther King Jr represented a particularly virulent virus that might have killed the system had his movement won quickly. His “virus” idea of black emancipation - freedom from the system - eventually diluted when the system figured out how to use this virus for its own benefit/profit. The system thought: More black people earning money=more goods consumed=maintenance of the status quo (the system always wins). More equal black people=widening pool of influence/votes/agreement for those in power. And so the system incorporated the virus, becoming stronger.
- The same was true for feminism. More women in the workforce=more goods consumed+more voting=victory. The success of modern feminism was achieved because the males in power accepted the alterations to the status quo. The trick was to offer females the trappings of power (money, titles, access to institutions), not real power (ability to create new parts of the system, to deny, to have agency, etc). Feminism succeeded only in supplying more human workforce for the sleep/consume cycle which previously had been accessible only by men. The system was strengthened, not weakened.
- Jesus also came up with a virulent virus. “I come to bring a sword…” was his first attempt at figuring out how to run his ministry, but it didn’t work. And whether he knew it or not, the virus he represented was gradually pared down. The abrasive movement became “render unto Caesar…” The key is that Jesus knew (although, how much was luck over skill is debatable) that a clean break with the system, a victory for the virus not the organism, would result in Christianity’s early death (as the organism fights back, as it did to Jesus' contemporary ministries in the Near East and to the Jewish Great Revolt). To get the nascent Christianity to take, it needed to carve pieces of its puzzle to fit exactly over the top of the existing system. This is the only way new ideas can be successful against the organism.
- Instead of destroying the system, historically significant people are included in history because they were useful to the status quo. Only rarely does the system change so drastically that a historically significant person can truly be called a usurper. Even the barbarians who sacked Rome maintained the system, they simply took the positions of power for themselves. Often their success was only to change the names of parts of the existing system/organism. New structures can emerge, such as a fresh arm or sense organ, but the overall system stays the same. A natural selection of the evolving sections of an unconscious society - the sum of individual vectors pointing in different directions.
- When two systems clash - for example, Alexander the Great and Darius - the stronger will always dominate or subsume the weaker. Clashing occurred regularly in the ancient world. Until Alexander, no other people group showed interest in spreading their system to the entire world. Since Alexander, the Western system has not been defeated by another version. It has however radically evolved to now reflect little of its earliest iteration under the Macedonian king. The entire world is now split between the majority of people groups which adhere to the Western system, and the tiny minority which do not. The latter is isolated, bullied and beaten into eventual resignation. The final goal is to eat the earth and bring it under a single dominant system. This is an inevitable outcome under the Western model, which is a mix today of Greek rationality, Alexandrian political unity, Christian universal belief and liberal post-Christian notion of progress.
- Christianity exists today because it merged into the Roman system of power structure, and did not defeat it. The idea fit over the top of the Roman system and survived by changing the names of the institutions: temples to churches, priests to bishops, emperor to Pope, war to holy war, superstition to religion, polytheism to monotheism, piety to absolution, taxes to tithes, ethics to godliness, citizenship to belief, etc. It may look different to us, but a Martian would see everything is still the same, only with different rulers.
- The example of the government as a faceless Leviathan is exactly how Google and other internet giants are now viewed by the public. All the arms and utility of the structure fulfilled by the government - the modern system - are being filled by the new digital structure as the latter now creates fresh appendages and organs for it to use. Power (sovereignty) is always conserved. It cannot be destroyed or created, it only flows. And as power flows it leaves in its wake the appearance of culture wars.
- A corporation is defined as a group of people working towards a common goal. There is a wrestling now between two corporations: the nation state (government) and the market state (shareholder business).
- Even the media shows this. Modern movies and TV display government employees with names, emotions and faces, going about their jobs in “pretend” reality. The movie is not the fiction, it is the reality which is the fiction. A disempowered power structure can be freely portrayed in art, an empowered structure allows specific artwork and censors all others. It might be entertaining, but it is actually the public-facing portrayal of a massive shift in power. The government is no longer protected as a nameless entity, an object, an entity. It is humanising a power structure, which is the same as defanging the structure. Humans treat individuals radically different to objects.
Monday, 20 June 2016
Thoughts on the system - 1
There’s no way to describe the system, the organism. Its vocabulary so grossly underwhelming. The following rough thoughts are an attempt to outline the unoutlineable: