Guest Contributor: Marie-Thérèse on the self-fulfilling prophecy

“I’m sick of hearing ‘bout the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’
Have some personal accountability”
(Nine Inch Nails ‘Capital G’)

My old sociology lecturer once talked about how the entrapments of modern life had deliberately and systematically siphoned us all off from one another; interrupted the social communication intrinsic to more communal ways of living, and how detrimental that had been in terms of rallying for a common cause. Now, more than a decade on, I think I finally understand the point that was being made, from observing the hostility towards the various forms of protest this year.

There is a growing voice of disdain toward any actions viewed as dissenting. Whether they be ‘middle class students’ protesting about tuition fees, ‘unemployed scum’ rioting on the streets of London, or ‘scrounging hippies’ pitching a tent in cities worldwide, we are increasingly scornful toward anyone we view as going against the grain.

I’ve been guilty of the very criticism I’m levying here. During the riots this summer, I angrily disparaged what I viewed as the lack of socio-political motives of the looters. I didn’t go so far as the ‘stop their benefits’ and ‘scum’ contingent, but that doesn’t make me any better than those who did. I still chose not to consider why people might feel so disenfranchised that destroying local businesses became a viable option.

This constant desire to pull people down, where does it come from? We are dismissive, often without having the courtesy to educate ourselves on what these groups believe, or oppose. We absorb sound bites filtered through the media and think we know all we need to, in order to reject them.

What I felt whilst watching the riots was a combination of frustration that these people had gotten the attention of the ‘establishment’ and were – in my view – squandering it. Then, further beneath the surface: resentment – that I had come from a similarly disadvantaged background, yet managed to turn it around without resorting to half-inching some trainers from JD Sports.

I had a similar reaction to the Occupy movement: I don’t have the luxury of protesting anymore. Sitting in a tent for months on end won’t make the rent or pay my debts. So instead I opted to shout down the idealists from the comfort of my armchair and broadband connection.

(photo: Bob Rafferty)

The ethos of the Occupy movement is that we are all the 99%; that we’re all in this together. The people on the streets want to represent all the people who can’t be: people with rent and debts, benefits, jobs and childcare issues. The inequalities they are challenging affect the majority of us. Yet we back-peddle furiously, keen to disassociate ourselves, more willing to continue the everyday struggle than to lend our support to those better able to sit and wait. We all agree that the system doesn’t work, but rather than engage in the dialogue, we challenge their ideology, their methods, even their right to be there.

I arrogantly asserted that the Occupy movement would come to nothing; that they lacked cohesion and had no realistic solutions. Then I started to notice others all saying the same thing – repeatedly and aggressively and directly. We are creating a self-fulfilling prophecy and imposing it on people with the audacity to demand a fairer society.

Is this our message? That if we have to struggle to make ends meet, then you damn well better struggle too? Put up and shut up until you’ve earned the right to moan about it – by which point you’ll be so disillusioned with wasted votes, and endless strike action, that you’ll simply be grateful to be in a job at all. Have we become so disconnected from one another that we’d sooner see those around us suffer than take a stand?

More importantly, is this the attitude we want to pass on to the next generation of kids sitting in over-crowded classrooms: Know your place. Don’t stand up for what you believe in. Above all, never ever think that you might be worth more.

When did we stop believing that we mattered?

I haven’t quite come full circle. I still retain a degree of cynicism; I still believe that amongst all the good intentions, there are those motivated by self-interest. But I am coming to see that the same could be said for every one of us choosing to cut the protestors down to size, rather than encourage their willingness to try…

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16 Comments

  • Brian Findlay
    November 18, 2011 - 3:38 am | Permalink

    Thank you for writing :)

    I shall now ramble.

    If I were to pick a fault with the Occupy movement, it’s “99% vs 1%” paradigm, would be it; Firstly it is grossly inaccurate, but more importantly it points a finger at specific persons rather than show the larger cultural issue which will ultimately lead to the extinction of our species (and most life on this planet) if we do not act quickly.

    Most of my reading over about the last 3 years or so has been on this topic, and one revelation I have discovered is that it’s not a “Western” problem, or a “capitalist” problem, or a fiscal problem, or an oil problem. The problem is global, it affects socialist and communist countries, no amount of budget rebalancing will fix it permanently, and even if we converted 100% of our oil based requirements to sustainable sources tomorrow, it would only defer the issue until a later time.

    The issue is quite specifically our culture itself.

    We (You – be it that you are British, German, Chinese, American or whatever else) as a culture have decided that we are better than everyone else, both at personal and national level, and on a religious/spiritual level, as well as many other levels that we might find useful for classifying ourselves as better than others. This can commonly be called the ego, but it’s actually non-existent within the biological mind.

    There is no part of the brain that deals specifically with being competitive, or being arrogant, or being corrupt. These are learned behaviours, and despite what we commonly believe are no more ingrained within us than reading a newspaper every morning, or a preference for cycling to work or walking.

    When you are a child growing up, the behaviour of your parents and the local tribe to yourself (being your neighbourhood community), is responsible for about 90% of what you do in life thereafter. This is not to say that if you are born into a family that supports Man United, you can’t change to being a Chelsea fan, or change sport and support the Bears, prefer to do sports rather than watch them on TV, or even just forget about sport all together and do something else for kicks.

    It is almost impossible however to stop being competitive.

    It’s easier to just bite the bullet, and pay higher fuel prices for your car, than it is to stop using a car altogether, and bike it in. Most people who have ditched their cars recently have not done so because of the environmental impact, it is the fuel costs talking, but it does not take too much imagination to believe that most of these people will still say that it was the environmental impact that was the decision maker. We do not like to have to deal with something that will lower our standing in the eyes of those whom we identify as peers. It is just much easier to deal with it that way.

    The desire to classify and disregard the political change movement is simply our way of dealing with something we would rather not have to deal with.

    Sooner or later we will have to face up to the fact that practically everything our socio-political system outputs is, at best, farcical. We will have to face the shame of understanding that everything our mothers and fathers told us was nonsense, that most of what our teachers taught us was irrelevant. We will also have to realise that our “ego-dominant” culture is what manufactured the Nazis and the Catholics, and the Conquistadors. These are not just some horror stories of our past; they are the result of our culture, and our desire to be dominant over everything.

    I support the Occupy movement, simply because they recognise that there is something badly wrong, even if they are a little frayed around the edges. The requirement is for humanity to regain consciousness in both a metaphorical and spiritual sense, and even if the OWS crew doesn’t know all the reasons why, they are the somewhat unwitting alarm clock.

    • marietherese
      November 18, 2011 - 4:50 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for this – makes for interesting reading! I especially liked the alarm clock analogy!

      So what would your suggestion of a ‘fix’ be?

      • Brian Findlay
        November 23, 2011 - 2:17 am | Permalink

        Hi Marie,

        Apologies for the long delay…….. and now back to more rambling.

        When we start to talk about a “fix”, we invariably turn on our engineering brains and get to work. So the first point of call is the science that deals specifically with the survival of our species, and that is of course ………… oh, wait, there isn’t one.

        This should come as a bit of a shock really, that despite many branches of our institutions of thinking touch on it a bit (most notably biology) there is no dedicated study into keeping our species alive. We have plenty to keep the individual ticking over, of course, but nothing about keeping us all going.

        The closest thing that we have is what is known as “systems theory”, and you can add to that the life work of a gentleman named Jacques Fresco called “The Venus Project”, which is quite explicitly an attempt at a working social model, based around the tenets of industrial design and social engineering. One problem with Fresco’s model is that he is the sole researcher for the most part, so his ideas, despite looking very futuristic and having plenty of wow factor, are a little on the rudimentary side when considering that the model is only really intended to last a few hundred years, and we’ve been about for 2 million in some form or another. Look up the Venus Project though, as it’s an explanation of how good we could make the world for ourselves, should we choose to grow up a bit, and if nothing else it’s a solution that looks workable.

        The first thing we need to recognise when designing our future is that the human race is tied into 1 huge symbiotic natural being, our planet. If you consider the sociological paradigm of interdependence, where if you remove a few cogs from the giant human clockwork, the whole of society can break down; Symbiosis is basically the same thing but on a biological level. Humans have certain requirements for continued existence, and these are supported by several other species, and we know for sure that we would die out if they ever became extinct: worms, bees, trees, and several others that we already know about, and most likely a few that we don’t yet know about.

        In my previous post I stated how the problem is our core value system, and not any particular annoyance of the human experience. The interesting thing is that there are people who live in sustainable communities, and have done so since pre-history. I am speaking of the remaining indigenous tribes, whom our “ego-dominant” has done it’s best to wipe out forever. For those peoples the importance of living in harmony with nature is one of the central values of their belief systems. Now, I’m not going to suggest that we should go back to living in tents in the forests, and restoring our hunter-gatherer nature; but it is clear to me that we need to re-adopt those value systems.

        It’s all a question of education really, and the education of future generations would simply need to be geared in a different direction. If we did this, the world would change for the better. We do not currently educate our children to preserve the Earth first, and progress the species second. We teach them to make money first, rely on people who must be smarter than them to progress the species second, and when it comes to planetary preservation, the elephant enters the room third, and is duly ignored when the teacher produces something shiny.

        What get’s me is when people bring up the idea that it is human nature to be the way we are, and that we cannot change. Human nature, as currently perceived, is entirely environmentally determined, so it is human behaviour. Human nature is more to do with our biology, our breeding window and our key development windows during life when the brain is growing, for example puberty. There are no “personality traits” which are written in to our genetics, despite what many right-wing and/or ill-informed nuggets keep trying to tell us. The first pointer to this was the genetic predisposition to developing breast cancer. Not all women found to have this gene will develop breast cancer, and most cases of breast cancer are women who do not have this gene. Further study has now shown that our behaviours are actually a heck of a lot to do with this too, as I shall describe. There is a gene which determines your predisposition to violence, for example, however it is not guaranteed that it will “activate”. Those who become “super-violent” are those who have the gene, but have an upbringing in which they are exposed to shocking violence, which studies show activates the gene. This process of genetic predispositions becoming active traits is now known as “epigenetics”.

        Once you realise that all of our supposed flaws are not solid at all, then you realise that a redesign of our education system will utterly alter our species, and thus the core value system. Once this is done then the futuristic eco-cities like those you see on the website of the Venus Project become very easy to do, as you would have a society that wants to live in harmony with nature, but still wants the best that technology can give it. We would thus make a combined effort with no argument, and the entire species behind the project, rather than just one little old man named Jacques.

        Many people make the argument to me, that if we change to the type of system that is proposed, then we will cease functioning as we will have nothing to do. This is easily shot down however, with the simple question “have you ever been bored?”; I can make a pretty good guess that it was a blend of boredom and curiosity that first inspired humans to master fire, and build wheels etc. Everyone gets curious, everyone gets bored, where is the problem?

        Ramble over, please feel free to fire questions at me, and accept my thanks for asking me to ramble on.

        • marietherese
          November 27, 2011 - 4:05 pm | Permalink

          Ok, I get that you’re quite into the whole Zeitgeist/TVP thing, but I (personally) don’t buy the latter at all.
          I’ve had a look at the website, and whilst he talks a good game, it seems to me that that is all he’s doing. I noticed the request for financial donations towards making the film (the donate button also gives the option of regular payments). Surely that flies in the face of the resource-based economy he advocates? It’s not an encouraging first impression when you go to the website.
          It also states that after the film (phase 2) that he intends to build a proto-type city (how would this be funded? how would they select the test inhabitants, how representative of current society would it be, in order to test his theories?) and a ‘theme park’, to further the aims of TVP. I have to admit I’m very skeptical of this – his solution for evolving beyond the monetary system is to throw money at it, for a prolonged period, in order to pass on his vision of what the world could be?

          As for the nature/nurture thing. I used to fall on the whole tabula rasa side, but actually, I don’t think you can dismiss genetic predisposition, or heritability, so easily. I’m not a scientist, so I can’t profess to have the definitive answer, but I reckon it’s a combination of both genetics and environment. You say human nature is more to do with our biology – then aren’t you just saying that we are biologically determined to behave a certain way?

          I don’t disagree on your comments about how we educate children though. I think you make a good point there!

  • November 18, 2011 - 12:10 pm | Permalink

    ”The guide is definitive,. Reality is frequently inaccurate.”
    (Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the end of the Universe.)

    It seems to me the biggest issue facing all of these ‘occupy’ protests is the fact the protest alone don’t change anything. So far in the last few years I have watched protests fail to stop the war in Iraq, the rise of student tuition fees, miners strikes, G8 and a ton of other topics ranging from drug reforms, equal rights to marry for homosexuals, to nuclear dismantlement. If protest worked then the Fastlane PeaceCamp? would no long exist and my gay friends could get married and give blood.

    Its my opinion that the only protests that appear to have ever been somewhat successful is either when they have been combined with violence and real civil disobedience, or in foreign countries where external governments have had an agenda to implement a regime change. Within western culture the only semi-successful protests were in the USA during the mid-20th century with the Vietnam war and campaign for racial equality.

    With this taken into consideration its hardly surprising that people at best are sceptical and at worse, hostile towards the idea of protesting. In the case of the occupy movements it’s not unlike sitting outside the lions cage at the zoo and asking to the lions to reform their nature. Until people realise what the system is designed to do in its entirety it will not be changed because they are still conforming within its operational functions.

    Protest are supposed to be a form of civil disobedience, they aren’t. London is a great example of this, true civil disobedience would have been setting up camp in the financial district rather than in the police approved St. Paul’s location. This is civil obedience. This is long established, protests applying to protest in designated areas. Following police guided routes to an nice area where they can be kettles and detained.

    At this point I think its worth noting that protests are only violent when the crowd fights back. The police are never ‘violent’… Only protesters. The failed G8 protests in london were a example of this.

    So with all of that understood it is my position that protests do not work. More often than not all they do is create a group of targets for the police to monitor, beat, pepper spray and add to the growing databases.

    Yes, its a good thing people want the world to be a fairer place. Yes, the world is completely run in a two tier class system. Masters and slaves!.. and The majority of the worlds population falls into the slaves category. Working 5 days a week to pay for a minority group to stay in power. The fuel for this throughout the 20th century has been money and pseudo-social/moral responsibilities. The very idea that people have a social responsibility to work for at least 50 years, 8 hours day, 5 days a week is so ingrained into the populous that it’s self policing. Despite the fact that nearly 75% of all jobs could be performed by machines, which in turn would give people a hell of a lot of free time. In fact its amazing just how many made up make-believe jobs only exist to keep the system moving. But this is going off topic.

    With the rise of the internet it has given birth to a wealth of new tools for social development and protest. Communication has evolved into a true world stage where people from many locations communicate on social networks, sharing ideas, dreams, art, plans and opinions. A lot of the old barriers are being broken down. To watch the actions of blogs like Wikileaks or the front lines of anonymous shows that people are empowered. We the people can mobilise and actually shut down and cost these banks and companies money. They can be attacked and held accountable without a single persons head connecting with a police baton. We can spread the dubious behaviours of governments and police overseers on youtube and do our own news reports without the bias media objectives. Without all the left/right political nonsense.

    Personally, I don’t think that the public distain towards the occupy movement is misplaced. Because simply, it ISN’T ENOUGH. At the end of the day its a bunch of people still submitting to the system, sitting about complaining that it isn’t fair. Like this is new knowledge… Asking a corrupt system to right itself isn’t going to work and until people ”Have some personal accountability”, and until people have genuine accountability, taking charge of society nothing will change. And you can tax as many banks and jail as many bankers as you like, that will not fix the problem.

    • marietherese
      November 18, 2011 - 1:48 pm | Permalink

      I think we tend to overlap a bit in our viewpoints, but possibly part ways on the methods. See, I think that protests can be effective if the numbers are great enough and the message clear. Not always, granted, but it worked for the Poll Tax demos back in the day. More recently, and relevantly, it has caused significant changes in Iceland, with the resignation and arrest of key officials regarding involvement in the banking crisis, referendums on whether the Icelandic people should have to pay back the debts to overseas countries and election of a constitutional assembly of regular (‘common’) people to their parliament. It’s not perfect, but it’s a huge achievement for a country with a population of about 300,000. So think what could potentially be achieved with the sheer numbers involved in the Occupy movement worldwide.

      I think if the protesters had broken the barricades outside LSX to set up where originally intended, then it would have been in complete opposition with the aim of peaceful protest. I don’t know quite where I stand on the whole peaceful protest vs civil disobedience angle, but I suspect it HAD to be peaceful to try and limit a repeat of the summer riots, which – regardless of motive/background – have been devastating for local businesses. I’m not sure public opinion would have been on their side had that happened again so quickly. Maintaining the non-violent resistance allowed them to at least gain a foothold in our tolerance levels.

      I dunno. Mostly my point is that I think the people demanding to be heard should feel able to make those demands. It’s bad enough that governments ignore protests, but when we ignore them too then we are just as culpable when nothing changes.

      I think that if we have such great ideas about why their methods don’t work, and how they can make it work better, then we should accept the repeated invitations to go along to one of their regular General Assemblies and actually give our tuppence-worth in a constructive way. Instead we just sit back and bitch about how they are doing it all wrong, and expect them to figure out how to do it to our preferences through the power of telepathy!

      • November 18, 2011 - 4:21 pm | Permalink

        I still stand that protests don’t work. What stopped the poll tax was that people simply didn’t pay it. The protests simply announced that no one intended too. And also those protests result in violence. Which simply re-enforces my original statement.

        As for iceland, that is a some what different story and I am not informed enough on the details to debate the pros and cons of it. I need to brush up on my reading there.

        I believe that a great deal could be achieved with the occupy movement should it be motivated in the right direction. In those numbers a great deal could be achieved should it be mobilised. But again, it simply isn’t realising its potential. Its simply doing what protest do, talking…

        Now I am not a proponent of violence or violent revolution. I personally don’t believe in wars or fighting. The only time it’s justified is in self defence. But while I agree that London doesn’t need anymore inner city violence right now, timing really isn’t the issue here. It’s all caused by the same motivating factors, so if it had erupted into police/protester clashes it would hardly have been surprising.

        Again, you see the governments involvement in actually tackling the issues that caused the riots of the summer. They aren’t doing a thing to address it. Like so many of the important issues that they are payed to address its swept under the rug. And this is what I believe will happen with the occupy movement. They appear to just be waiting for the attention to shift to another issue, because this is how the political system works in the UK and through out a large amount of the world.

        While I can understand that people wish to heard, this isn’t the way to do it. As far as I can see people need to be pro-actively addressing the issues here because the government isn’t going too. Money should be completely withdraw from banks, companies boycotted, websites crashed, flash mobs mobilised in multiple locations, the fake economy that this made up nonsense is all built on needs to be pulled down, other wise this ”revolution in awareness” will be nothing more than a distraction while they install the economic control system 0.2. If there was one thing that the london riots showed in summer was that large numbers of small groups can mobilise and disperse quicker than can be controlled, if you have to be on the street, then they should be everywhere and moving, never staying still… Although even that isn’t something I can really support.

        The sad truth of it all is that money isn’t even a real thing, its a barter system. A form of exchange, an agreed reality. But it was deliberately built on a faulty premise and has been abused ever since. Campaigning for a another system of servitude isn’t something I can personally get behind. Simply put, all the worlds problems (aside a few mental health issues) can be traced back to money. We are in a position as a species where we don’t need this as a tool of motivation to strive to be better. We should be looking to dismantle that way of doing things completely and that’s the type of change we need.

        • marietherese
          November 18, 2011 - 5:11 pm | Permalink

          I actually don’t disagree with most of what you’ve written here, but how do you get the kind of change you’re proposing? I’m not a financial expert by any stretch (Foundation Maths FTW) but wouldn’t there still be a knock-on effect for everyday people if we all started withdrawing our money from the bank and transferring wages/benefits to be paid into credit unions? Would the banks start leaning on mortgage holders or small businesses? (I actually pay into my local credit union btw. I’m quite a strong advocate of grassroots solutions, I just don’t fully understand the ramifications of such a large scale action).

          I also agree with you about how the riots were effectively brushed under the carpet in terms of legislation to bring about proper change. However, the violent element enabled the government to tighten up it’s sentencing laws, and the well-intentioned ‘Clean Up Crews’ who mobilised via social networking gave Our Glorious Leader plenty of ammo to use when he next tries to foist his Big Society propaganda on us. So civil unrest did us no real favours there.

          • Niall Tracey
            November 18, 2011 - 6:23 pm | Permalink

            You can’t all withdraw from a bank at once, because that leaves the bank “illiquid” — the bank is left without enough cash (liquid assets) for its day-to-day running. It’s not insolvent because it in theory has enough debtors to cover the savers.

            In theory. Unfortunately, part of the problem is that banks have been lending money that doesn’t exist — hence the need for the bail-out.

            Any attempt to exit from the big banks, however slow, is likely to leave problems for the last man out. And this is why they can’t change the system: if the imaginary money disappears, we’re all stuffed.

            I’ll be slowly moving away from the big banks, but right now I live on an island and the only banks I can get physical access to are HBoS and RBoS, so my main accounts will stay with them for the time being. I’ll also be giving preferential consideration to mutuals when it comes to insurance.

  • Niall Tracey
    November 18, 2011 - 4:40 pm | Permalink

    I think the biggest problem with the system is best described in David Findlay’s word: corruption. Unlike him, I believe that humanity is predisposed to corruption, but unfortunately many people fail to understand what corruption truly is. True corruption isn’t when greedy people get themselves into positions of power for their own profit, but when people with good intentions end up doing bad things.

    There are very few people in the world who believe they are bad people, and people tend to confuse their actions and their intentions. Essentially, “I am a good person, so what I do is good.” People then lead on to rewarding themselves for being good, and I think we can all recognise corruption in ourselves for this: the dieter who rewards himself for his dieting with “a little treat”; the driver or cyclist who rewards himself for being a conscienscious road user by skipping a “harmless” red light.

    We have to recognise that it is THIS type of corruption which is troubling the world markets today.

    It doesn’t take too much of a stretch of the imaginateion to see that the bankers and politicians, like all of us, believe that they are good people, and that their bonuses and perks are rewards for them being good people. Their friends are also “good people”, so they reward them too.

    The problem, then, is how to show them the effects of their actions without attacking them personally. Placards decrying “greed” and “fat cats” aren’t helpful — they need to be shown that they are doing bad things despite being good people.

    Unfortunately, society is becoming more adversarial, and we believe more and more in “goodies” and “baddies” with every passing day….

    • marietherese
      November 18, 2011 - 5:23 pm | Permalink

      Do you really believe that there are people in the higher echelons who aren’t blindingly aware that what they are doing is harmful to the majority of everyday people, and choose not to care?

      I’d like to think you’re right, but the cynic in me extends both ways on that one m’fraid…

      I do think, however, that most people who are in the highest income bracket are completely disconnected from the struggles facing most of us. Whilst they can’t necessarily be blamed for the lack of real comprehension, it doesn’t really help that they tend to occupy positions of influence.

      What would be a better way of getting the point across to these people then?

      • Niall Tracey
        November 18, 2011 - 5:51 pm | Permalink

        Why would it be more obvious to the upper echelons than to the ground level grunts? The longer you adhere to an ideology, the more personal investment you have in it. The last thing a 50-something executive wants is to realise that his whole life has been a sham, and that he has been causing suffering to his fellow man for the last 30 years of his life. In his own eyes he is a good person, and he wants to continue to view himself that way.

        For the power of personal investment, take a look at Sc**nt*l*gy — they get their recruits in the door with a “personality test” or a “stress test”, and start giving what appears to be practical advice on dealing with anxiety. As they take more and more money, the recruits become more and more invested. Gradually the practical advice gives way to the alien mumbo jumbo, and people accept this because they’re so heavily invested in the idea.

        If investment can make people give all their money away in exchange for tales about parasitic alien soul fragments, is it difficult to image that people at the top truly believe their there due to personal merit, fair and square?

        • November 18, 2011 - 7:11 pm | Permalink

          There is a suggested theoretical cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships or even identify as being a real existing person, its called Dunbar’s number or The Monkey-sphere.

          The theory goes that the Monkey sphere is the group of people who each of us, using our brains, are able to conceptualise as being real people. If the scientists are right, it’s physically impossible for this to be a number much larger than 150.

          Which goes a long way to explaining why people tend to do cruel and thoughtless things to people that they don’t directly interact with.

          People toss half-full bottles of bleach right into the bin, without a second thought of what would happen if the binman should get it splashed into his eyes. Why? Because the binman exists outside their Monkey sphere.

          Same goes with people in the banking world messing with the worlds economy. It might be physically imposible for them to truly empathise enough to be able to consider anyone outside their 150 as being real. Even more concerning is if you look at how many of these people in those high-decision making positions are most like psychopathic.

  • eternally_amazed
    November 22, 2011 - 8:08 am | Permalink

    ” Masters and slaves!.. and The majority of the worlds population falls into the slaves category. Working 5 days a week to pay for a minority group to stay in power. The fuel for this throughout the 20th century has been money and pseudo-social/moral responsibilities. The very idea that people have a social responsibility to work for at least 50 years, 8 hours day, ”

    … hilarious trolling! love it!

    • Brian Findlay
      November 23, 2011 - 3:34 am | Permalink

      There is nothing trollworthy about this I’m afraid. It is simply a matter of perspective, but for all intents and purposes the monetary system is a system of modern slavery, that ceased to be relevant when the oil boom happened. Prior to that it was necessary, as the human population provided the horse power for it’s own facilitation. When oil and the following mass automation came along, this was no longer required. Thus, we now have a system where the majority of employment is not required. Numbers are difficult to come by, but anyone who is not in a field where they are either progressing or maintaining the species, is in an obsoleted vocation, and possibly as much as 90% of the current maintenece projects could be automated if well thought through. Also trolling is not when someone makes a point, it is when someone just sneers and makes a short and cheap derisive remark in the direction of it, rather than providing an opposing argument. So unless you can come back with a decent argument here, you are the one doing the trolling, because your work has no merit, and you are purposely seeking to derail someone else.

  • moira
    November 27, 2011 - 3:04 pm | Permalink

    again rambling what we need is honest economy and sustainable economy – apparently is possible for a government to work out how much money the citizens will need to purchase materials and pay workers to produce items that are repairable and will not devastate any neighbour or environment in the making or the using thereof
    apparently this has been possible in the past and there fore must be possible in the future and instead of the money men shaking their heads and saying it is too late we required them to use the skill sets for which they are being paid vast amounts of money – albeit not as vast as they should like – in comparison to the rest of people kind to kindly get their arks in gear and work it out asap even sooner
    i notice there is no a petition to this effect anywhere on the uk petition website and hope the occupiers will get together and write one asap

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