The Intelligentsia

People think that our sole object is to amass gold. No one believes what we say. Like insolvent tradesmen we are without credit. – Pope Pius II, 1460i

The very justified resentment against science as a classist system of control and manipulation is being used as propaganda by the same corporations and politicians who used science as a tool of oppression. With the necessary public examination of science and academia has come an anti-elitist backlash where people are encouraged to trust no one: not science, governments, media, politicians or any authority. While misleading information will encourage people to act against their own interests, no information will immobilize them or encourage them to follow demagogues. This rejection of expertise has been used repeatedly in recent democratic votes to encourage the rise of uninformed or dishonest demagogues globally. The rise in misinformation and demagogues has in turn encouraged calls for even tighter control over information and official channels.

Now science itself, like journalism, is struggling to be heard over the demagogues and struggling even more for the trust of the classes below them. The trust and faith of the jaded and confused public is the most fought over resource today, with billions or trillions spent annually to procure it. Scientists and journalists understand even more than most that the very existence of humanity is in the balance. The corporate demagogues are (correctly) depicting intellectualism as bourgeoisii and (incorrectly) telling the public that ignoring experts is the same as overthrowing the elite and refusing to be manipulated. This blocks even the prior filtered access to knowledge the public used to receive and leaves people at the mercy of personality based governance and demagogues. Even ideas are conflated with ideology and people are discouraged from thinking about ideas because of previous massacres in the name of ideologies.

“Ironically, while this work should serve to improve the quality of scientific medicine, it is being used by some cranks to attack the scientific basis of medicine.” – Dr. Steven Novella, Are Most Medical Studies Wrong?

When a force which should be productive is under attack by a force which is certainly destructive, it is a natural feeling to delay criticism which may be used by the forces of destruction and to insist that now is not the time to suggest improvement. In the case of science and academia, immediate critique is not only necessary, it is crucial and urgent, but critique alone is not enough. Every time scientists and academics have taken a stand against power, they are threatened, expelled, imprisoned or executed. It is almost impossible for scientists and academics to reach the public directly without media and politically vulnerable appointments. Science can be undermined by demagogues because demagogues control communication between science and the public. We have to establish direct communication between epistemic communities and the wider public in order to remove power from demagogues. We have to build a protective network for knowledge preservation, auditing and dissemination. A time when knowledge is already under assault is the best time to establish this network.

In this era of no traditions, science in particular and information in general control our actions. Our true governance is through information. We will destroy humanity or save it based on information. Governance by the people requires knowledge as a societal right and a global commons. It should be the duty of all members of a self governing society to audit and share knowledge and promote and support its development. The ponzi schemes of academia and science shun anyone not in the citation circle and block access entirely to ideas and critique from outside of their class. Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook and Google all serve as propaganda control for states and corporations. Our collective knowledge should not be directed by corporations or exclusively available to a tightly guarded class, either for access or for contribution. We live under a supranational empire. We do not need secrecy over borders to protect knowledge from our enemies. The classes on top are the enemies of those below and they are maintaining their positions by the secrecy and idea ownership we allow them.

The solutions being recommended to the lethal ignorance of the public are headed in the wrong direction, towards more corporate control and a more accredited expert class. Journalists are wanting the internet reconstructed to give themselves credit and funding for each piece of information posted while they still grant neither to their subjects or sources. Scientists are encouraging even more secrecy and delayed publishing and less communication with media, much less the public.

The scientific class encourages those admitted into it to listen to their peers ahead of their patients and listen to local and unsanctioned knowledge only to steal credit. Science encourages binary division and branding of people and nature as mad / sane, dangerous / harmless or normal / abnormal according to the needs of industry and the powerful and to the detriment of the public. Science, academia and the media together encourage a cult-like devotion to pronouncements of one truth at a time instead of reflecting the nuance and uncertainty inherent in most research. Science views everything through a lens of corporate interest. Elite knowledge is still a product of wealth, leisure and access.

While the world has now amassed a vast quantity of knowledge and progression of that knowledge has grown exponentially since science and academia began, there is no reason to believe the creation of a scientific class brought the growth instead of the slope of progression we were already on. If instead of a closed class of scientists we had created open, permeable, epistemic communities, it is hard to not believe we would have made far less mistakes and far more progress in directions more beneficial to all of humanity. If the epistemic communities were open to the people, our information would not be so easy for demagogues and corporate interest to intercept and manipulate. Canada teaches mining to children as a ‘sustainable resource’ and bans scientific research as ‘anti-oil’ opinions. This and other Lysenkoism and educational propaganda is only possible if we do not all have direct access to all expert information through transparency and knowledge bridges.

Oral history taught us that people can accumulate knowledge in the collective mesh network of their brains and retain it with detailed accuracy for thousands of years. Guilds attempted to hoard that knowledge away from other stratas for their own enrichment and power. The new intelligentsia has often tried to be open and evolve but failed miserably because of a hierarchical classist structure that blocks input or access from the lower classes and puts knowledge in service to a tyrannical corporate empire. From the first age we can learn that if people have information they own, they will happily spread it, preserve it and use it in their daily lives. The second age guilds taught us that knowledge is power and if it is not shared, it is a recipe for tyranny. The third age has taught us that the public has no trust in information outside of their own class strata and they are justified in that lack of trust.

Whenever knowledge has helped secure an economic advantage it has been a source of conflict. Even old family recipes or other skill that might improve marriage possibilities have been guarded as tightly as guild secrets. Methods of preserving food, fishing spots and the ability to sew and maintain mukluks have in other times and places been as valuable to their possessors as silk, ermine or tulips. These secrets are no longer necessary for the survival of any person, just corporations.

Artists and all creative or knowledge based professions have fought to criminalize their audiences since copyright was invented. All recording technology since the player piano has had to fight artists who insisted their professions would be ruined by it. Rap deejays were the first to force mainstream acceptance of using other artists’ music in a mashup, opening up a huge pool of creativity that is still fighting for legal acceptance. As soon as people in both the free software movement and social media, started freely sharing their knowledge, industry found itself too dependent on the open source commons material to maintain their exclusive control. In all cases, the removal of exclusivity and knowledge gates brought an explosion of work and far greater diversity and expertise. Instead of responding to the obvious societal good in removing copyrights and patents, as the reasonable time for either has shortened, the time of ownership has been lengthened under international law.[cite]

There have been many suggestions for science to follow the lead of open source communities.iii In 2009, The Tropical Disease Initiative and several others attempted to encourage unpatented, open source drug discovery. Some initiatives such as Sci-Hub, an open access library of scientific papers established by neuroscientist Alexandra Elbakyan, have had better success by just ignoring the intellectual copyright laws and allowing the public access.1 Lately, the Open Science movement has been gaining traction, especially in the European Union with projects such as Facilitate Open Science Training for European Research (FOSTER) and various other initiatives and calls to action. The problem with all of these movements is they only involve publishing scientific data. Knowledge is not accessible unless the public can understand it. Epistemic communities require knowledge bridges to communicate with the public.

Science and journalism must evolve into systems for producing open, transparent, verified knowledge, free of powerful influence. Academia and journalism must become fully open, transparent methods of transmitting verified knowledge.

Our industrialized society has given us a backwards world where ideas are owned and personal data is not. While societal knowledge is held away from the public by gatekeeping laws and institutions, the personal details of the public is a product being examined and manipulated for politicians and the trade economy. The current goals of knowledge based capitalism continue the progression of supranational empire. The billionaires of silicon valley, like the financial and commodity industries, exist to create a new corporate ruling class overseeing a new age of corporate empire. What they produce is in service of empire, not greater society. The financial and commodity industries were set up to rob resources and enslave the rightful owners. The technology industries have created a global governance system designed around control and manipulation of information.

Academia is the primary institution where people are sorted and taught to sort each other, where the class systems are created and perpetuated. Those that decry the anti-intellectual tendencies of those on the bottom refuse to acknowledge the class system behind the hostility. It isn’t knowledge these people disdain, it is the class of people who refuse to allow them input or entry into the halls of debate. Knowledge and certification are hoarded behind a series of obstacles, only accessible after years of hazing to determine whether the recipients are suitable for entry into a homogenized class. Academia, like science, is a knowledge dictatorship. The wider public are barred from seeing the source of knowledge and expected to accept the filtered and packaged versions as truth. They are expected to acknowledge the superiority of the keepers of knowledge, when that superiority was granted by an external authority with no mandate from the people to create a superior class. This is not the same as an epistemic community that the people promoted themselves.

Academia is not a member of the communities it dictates to by virtue of the class floor built between them. Academia is used to bar people from the organizations which profess to speak for them. Human Rights Watch and many other organizations protecting the rights of those on the bottom demand a PhD for applicants seeking employment with them, barring entry to most of the people they are speaking for. Academic standing is used not just to bar people from economic classes and knowledge. Most borders are also open or closed depending on academic credentials and the laws dictating that were created by political and legal academics. Academia provides the majority of the visas to the supranational classes and so acts as the bureaucracy for a global eugenics program. While massive open online courses (MOOCs) have been an amazing development in bringing knowledge to the wider public and creating concentric circles of expertise and knowledge bridges around epistemic communities, the accreditation is still withheld by institutions and accessible only to those with money and time.

Not only does academia categorize students, it also spends far more time on assigning ideas and actions to categories or Great Men than it does in initiating or evaluating either. Students are rarely given ideas to audit and test and translate to action. They are instead given ideas to attribute by Great Man and categorize by ideology. They debate with sources and quotes instead of opposing ideas and actions, encouraging a public which follows personalities and ideologies instead of testing ideas and creating action. They are taught to worship solitary geniuses instead of being taught mass collaborative processes and how to use them. Academia is conducted like religious study, focused on what the great men said and meant instead of whether or not they were correct. The printing press created a rigor mortis for debate which the Internet should have cured, but academia slogs on in its old path with the same methods.

We no longer live in a world dominated by resource capitalism or industry. We live in a world dominated by information capitalism and information control. Industry had a direct source of conflict between workers and owners. Information simply has manipulation at the top and those at the bottom are largely unwitting and passive consumers. The intelligentsia is depicted as a meritocracy, a victimless elite as opposed to the industrialists victimizing factory workers.

Science hoards knowledge and uses it against the people and for the profit of corporations. Academia acts as gatekeepers to allow filtered streams of knowledge to a selected few. Journalism acts as a marketing agent for information which benefits the powerful. Academia sorts the people for future valuation by the trade economy and the law punishes those they deem without value. None of these institutions are by and for the people as they are all imposed by an outside class. None have a right to the confidence of the people and they receive none.

A people with no confidence in either their epistemic communities from the scientific class or their knowledge bridges from the academic and journalist classes is a people with no belief in ideas. With no ideas to follow in confidence, people will become cults following personalities which will become demagogues.

Societies do not transcend classes. If all knowledge is removed to a higher class, the lower classes will neither trust nor follow it. Without reliable knowledge, action will follow class demagogues.

1 Go to sci-hub.cc if you have difficulty finding any scientific papers cited in the endnotes of this book. Also consider supporting Elbakyan and the site in any way you can, she does not receive nearly the support or recognition deserved for her brave and extremely important work.

 

Excerpted from Autonomy, Diversity, Society. Citations will be transferred when I get a minute.

 

Radical science

“When capital enlists science in her service, the refactory hand of labour will always be taught docility.” – Andrew Ure, 1835i

The problems with the scientific community were hardly news to scientists. Joseph Needham was concerned in 1935 about the impact of “scientific opium”, “a blindness to the suffering of others” and “a ruthlessness derived from the very statistical character of the scientific method itself” which “may too easily be applied to human misfits and deviationists in the socialist world order”. He addressed the scientific zeal to overcome all the evils of existence with the warning, “the problem of evil is not capable of so simple a resolution.”ii

After the atomic bomb was used in World War II, the world’s scientists enjoyed a boom in the United States in service to its ever-expanding military. The military expanded science and science expanded military in an all encompassing death dance that dwarfed all other funding and absorbed vast quantities of scientific thought and global potential. At this point scientists were not responding solely to their own very ample bigotries. They were being trained with military propaganda and their findings were spun by military propagandists. US President Dwight Eisenhower’s famous 1961 speech warning of the military industrial complex reminded us, “The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present.”iii Any of science’s already tenuous claims at being apolitical and ideology free died during the science race of the cold war. J.D. Bernal wrote in 1958, “The only time I could get my ideas translated in any way into action in the real world was in the service of war.”iv The militarization and commodification of science was a fait accompli.

There were many efforts initiated in the 20th century to widen the perspective of scientists and to stop those projects which were destructive to humanity in favour of those which would be beneficial. Protests over scientists’ participation in weapons of mass destruction and exploitation of the environment were held in the late sixties, including the formation of the British Society for Social Responsibility in Science (BSSRS) in 1969. The Edinburgh branch of BSSRS helped run a teach-in about pollution which was attended by an estimated thousand people in 1970.v “It becomes essential to take binding steps which cut off one’s line of retreat… we have to fix it so they wouldn’t have us back even if we wanted to come.” Robert Young declared in 1977.vi

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By the 1980s, the removal of most research out of universities and into top secret research facilities muzzled dissent and greatly reduced awareness of what science was doing.vii The development of Science and Technology Studies (STS) to study the relationship between scientific knowledge, technological systems, and society was a painful attempt to study the impact of scientific isolation from society from an academic vantage point still isolated from society.viii The earlier radical science movement was often explicitly socialist, even explicitly Marxist. After the political failures of communism and technological utopia, striving for any type of political end fell very out of favour. Scientific circles sought to remove politics and ideology from their organizations and work entirely, returning to 1926 when Martin Heidegger declared “the end of philosophy”, and claimed that “science does not think”.ix

Of course, this was the equivalent of burying their heads in the sand as outside the lab, in the offices of their directors and funders, they were owned by politics and capitalist ideology. As journalism loses any claims of being unbiased as soon as it selects a topic as newsworthy, science is not apolitical as soon as it selects a topic of study. Science does not follow purely intellectual inquiry in pursuit of the greatest understanding. Science is not a science. Science has been a means of allowing officially accepted truths to emanate from only one class under direction from the ruling class. What scientific thought is doing much of the time is no more or less than what this book is doing: providing one framework out of a vast array of different possible frameworks and choosing to view the world through that framework and study only the issues that make up that framework. This can be a very helpful exercise for providing a certain perspective but it certainly does not result in a single indisputable truth.

“Scientists always stomp around meetings talking about ‘bridging the two-culture gap’, but when scores of people from outside the sciences begin to build just that bridge, they recoil in horror and want to impose the strangest of all gags on free speech since Socrates: only scientists should speak about science!” – Bruno Latour, 1999x

The much resisted opening of the knowledge hoarded by science, as well as long overdue scrutiny of the activities of scientists, has brought a great deal of very valid criticism of both. The slur that anyone who questions them is anti-science is ironically used to silence anyone who questions the methods and motivations of scientists. The idea that criticism or a demand for transparency is an attack, or that any criticism is dangerous and anti-knowledge, is simply more evidence of the scientific class acting like a closed and extremist cult instead of a method of producing verified knowledge. This is the reaction of an elite class outraged and panickedxi that anyone is questioning their authority and control over knowledge, much like news media did before them. If scientists are no longer an ingroup with very different rules for their outgroups, then everyone must be free to examine them just as they examine everyone. Despite the very popular and publicly redeeming efforts of the scientific community in the work to protect the environment, and the fight against industry for acceptance of scientific findings on the environment, there is still no integrated structure of public audit or transparency.

Thomas Kuhn could point out in 1962 that science viewed the world through a series of periodically revolutionized paradigmsxii but the same critique from the poststructuralists outside the scientific community was met by enough hostility that the critique and reaction were popularly dubbed the Science Wars of the 1990s. In Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels with Sciencexiii Paul Gross and Norman Levitt insist that those who question them do not believe in reality itself. Who but science could claim that only they know reality and they alone are influenced by nothing? We are to believe they create their ideas directly from the primordial soup, a godlike feat indeed. This unquestioning belief that science has the sole key to facts and reality has given us an educational system that graduates people more ignorant than when they went in. There is a point in the process of being educated on a topic when the student is full of information and convinced they have all the facts and solutions. If education progresses and experience is broadened, they will discover nuance and context and layers of alternating perspectives and realize they have only ideas which may or may not bring the results they are hoping for. Without this broadened perspective, scientists become more convinced in their own infallibility, or at least superiority. At least the uneducated understand their own ignorance.

The highly inaccurate and unscientific idea that the challengers of science are The Academic Left is an invitation to further persecute that subsect of academia who were already purged from academia and driven from their jobs in the west during the cold war. In a brief exchange with a New York Review of Books literary criticxiv the authors also bring the critic’s leftist politics to the forefront in the first paragraph of their rebuttal. For a pair of scientists intent on proving that science is apolitical, it is obvious that mentioning someone’s political beliefs is their go to method of lumping all of their critics together and discrediting all of their beliefs based on one political belief. The Academic Left is also a not very veiled reminder that the ideas of everyone who is not a caucasian man are still superstition. Others may acquire education but then their ideas are just “higher superstition”. The reference to “the left” is also a nod to the history of radical science which attempted to warn the world about environmental destruction and weapons manufacturing in the 1960s and 1970s. A 1977 Daily Mail article foreshadowed the 1994 book when it depicted a BSSRS action against the British Science Association as “the Left has Science by the throat” with no acknowledgment that the BSSRS were also scientists.

The political accusations are also meant to imply that the authors are, by defending the status quo, apolitical. Establishment scientists see themselves as an international class like Olympians, and like Olympians, they see themselves as apolitical while standing on politically funded podiums representing political alliances. The co-option of science by industry is depicted as the conventional stance and the fight for science for humanity is depicted as a fringe attack on science. The casting out the Left from science and the depiction of all opposition as the Left is nothing if not political. Choosing the status quo is not the same as being apolitical or non-ideological. Higher Superstition claimed an agenda by “postmodern and feminist critics, AIDS activists, environmentalists, animal rights advocates and others”xv against “reality”. It is not hard to discern in their defense of reality a political defense of the supremacy of the status quo and the exceptionalism of the wealthy, western man.

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BSSRS cartoon about sexism in science

It is only with no connection at all to reality that a person could fail to notice, particularly in the 1990s, the neglect of diseases such as AIDS (or now ebola), the lack of representation of women and minorities in test results or the experimentation on lower classes for the benefit of higher classes. The reality science described was of course a reflection of the bigotries and group narcissism of the scientific community. Scientists’ insistence on presenting themselves as a pure meritocracy depends on public acceptance of this reality. Valuations of people which place IQ above strength or kindness and compensate years of university ahead of shortened life expectancy is part of the reality science has created for us. The group narcissism of scientists sees itself as the standard and lashes out at the slightest criticism. Like a traveler in Einstein’s elevator they are not fit to measure or even detect the elevator they are traveling in.

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Cartoon from Science for People, issue 43

As Gary Wersky described in 2007, “The conviction grew in some that, far from being allies in the fight against ‘higher superstition’, STS ‘social constructionists’ had joined hands with an academic left made up of feminist scholars and postmodernist English professors in an unholy conspiracy to undermine the legitimacy and authority of science.”xvi By depicting all critics as a block of uniform opinion and politically motivated ideology and depicting all criticism as an existential threat, science slammed and bolted the doors to constructive (or deconstructive) criticism. This lack of acceptance of outside critique led to criticism being formed outside of the community instead of in tandem with it. Such criticism was then rejected by scientists who complained it frequently lacked both understanding and intellectual rigour. Science refused any meaningful use of outside critique and forced all interested parties into two parallel and uncommunicating streams. Science lost the opportunity to open their epistemic communities and create knowledge bridges which would provide much needed critique in a rigorously vetted and usable standard. They instead left their critics free to collect an outside audience to view both the closed hostility of the scientific community and any sometimes poorly founded sniping of those outside. The public is now left with a choice between acceptance of the wildest of conspiracy theorists or blind faith in the closed and frequently sociopathic science industry because scientists refuse to be questioned by those they very transparently see as inferiors.

The distrust sown and never reconciled was easily exploited by demagogues such as Thatcher and Reagan. Science became even more isolated and alienated from a misunderstanding and judgmental public and even more did they require the protection of their exploiters from government and industry. The hostility perplexed Bruno Latour as he wrote “Far from not believing in reality, surely science studies has added reality to science.”xvii But the reality added by science studies was reality from the perspective of outgroups and it polluted the clear lens of the scientific community, the only view accepted by them as the one clear reality. “How could we be pitted against the scientists?” Latour wondered. “Are biologists anti-life, astronomers anti-stars, immunologists anti-anti-bodies?” Sadly, the answer is not a clear no. Scientists, from the time science first decided that nature would reveal its secrets more readily under torture, have most often taken positions in opposition to the objects of their study. Scientists who are so suspicious of science studies may be projecting from their own relationship to those they study.

“The duty of the man who investigates the writings of scientists, if learning the truth is his goal, is to make himself an enemy of all that he reads, and … attack it from every side.” Hasan Ibn al-Haytham 1011-1021

Whether science likes it or not, science is a part of a wider community and impacts a wider community and must be audited by and transparent to all those they affect. The insistence that we are to believe that all scientific and industrial developments are safe until proven unsafe or that we are to trust regulatory boards and studies commissioned and funded by the very industry that would be profiting from it are not reasonable. Those scientists who see doubt of them as a lack of respect for their higher ranking, and their doubt of the experiences of the lower classes as healthy skepticism, must be overruled. Outside critique must be integrated within the process of science and not seen as an enemy attack. The scientific method must be expanded to include integration and feedback with the entire society and ecosystem impacted.

The most persistent complaint of scientists is that their critics do not have the knowledge to critique them usefully. The Socal hoax in 1996 involved a physicist convincing a small academic journal to publish a parody of the worst of scientific critique as evidence of their lack of scientific rigour. He was asked to change all of the worst elements of the article and refused. The journal published his article in the end in deference to his scientific credentials as he was the only natural scientist who had submitted to their Science Wars edition and thus they became the butt of the hoax. Despite the fact that he proved they “felt comfortable publishing an article on quantum physics without bothering to consult anyone knowledgeable in the subject”xviii he also proved much more than he set out to do.

Social Text was a small publication in no way to be confused with a professional science journal. The alternative takeaway from the Socal Affair is that journals show deference to the scientific community over those trying to be heard from the outside, even in the most sympathetic of editions of the most sympathetic of journals. He also proved that journals will publish a certified expert even when it is obvious to them that his methods and conclusions are not of a professional standard. The Socal Affair did not prove that this same deference was afforded to anyone not recognized as an expert and the journal’s response that “Less well known authors who submit unsolicited articles to journals like ours may now come under needless suspicion”xix intimated that he had aggravated the credibility divide. The fact that science’s gossip magazine Lingua Franca published Socal’s exposé with no opportunity for rebuttal given to the journal even further shows the double standards between the two worlds as does the fact that Socal suffered no professional repercussions for his outgroup hoax which would certainly not have been tolerated within the community of professional scientific journals. Socal’s depiction of the outside critics as “barbarian hordes”xx did more to illustrate the problem with science than the problem with its critics. Science responded to perceived criticism that they were an isolated and narcissistic community with demands for isolation and proof of group narcissism.

The unfortunate part of this reaction is not just the loss to science but also the loss to its critics. There were a great many valid criticisms that needed to be made about the excesses of reactionary poststructionalism in the 1990s, and we are feeling the repercussions from the lack of correction today. The idea grew among the political descendants of radical science that a lack of cultural hegemony had contributed to the failure of Marxism, so they invested more and more into identity politics. Rojek and Turner in 2000, while once more depicting science critics in the U.K. as Left-wing, also contributed valid points. They critiqued the critics own group narcissism including “the self image …[that cultural studies] are closer to material reality” and “its own variety of moral arrogance, intellectual narrowness and over-confidence”. They asserted that cultural studies contributed to revising power relationships primarily at an aesthetic level, was deeply politicized and magnified current local conditions over broader and historical trends. They pointed out the negative and reactive nature of postmodernism which produced “an undecideable sea of micro-relationships” and “the privileging of the cultural over the social and economic”. They also claimed that postmodernism “Although profoundly politicized … has no tenable or sustained political agenda” and accused its proponents of careerism.xxi

Seventeen years later, it is obvious that the above criticism was valid and ought to have received more discussion and resolution. Instead, each side progressed in hostile and opposing thought bubbles, each pointing at how bad the other is, like two political parties. Neither side included the wider public and neither offered solutions to use criticism more effectively. Anger sells and pointing out faults is easy. Solutions are difficult to develop, difficult to explain and risky to implement. Far fewer people read scientific papers than social media. Criticism of a broad societal hierarchy devolved into the rise of micropolitics and the social media microcelebrity hierarchy. Dissidence became a career, not a means to a solution. Division and hostility sell. The everything is political post modernists of academia brought us the everyone is a demographic politicians of representative democracy and the every microaggression is a career thought leaders of Twitter.

The division of dissent into packets of identity politics allowed scientific establishment to appease the individual sects with initiatives of political correctness. The radical science of the 1960s and 1970s, which fought issues such as weapons, environmental destruction and technologies of political control, were transformed into institutions for cultural studies and feminist critiques. Radical magazines like Science for People, Radical Science Journal and Undercurrents were replaced by sectarian courses of study, politically pleasing, reactive, narrow in perspective and low on facts. Radical science had also been concerned with inclusion of marginalized groups but today it is the issues which are marginalized. A war which was to fight the direction humanity was taking was reduced to a war over whether all sects were properly represented in our mutual destruction.

Thanks partly to its critics, science has lost all of its metanarratives. There is no longer a goal specific to science, or none which is acknowledged. There is a purpose to all action, and where it is not defined by the actor they will follow a purpose assigned to them. In the case of science, they follow their funders and their purpose is to exploit the earth and its inhabitants for maximum profit. Even where scientists fight against the destruction of the earth in its entirety, that is in line with their capitalist mandate. They are still enabling the exploitation of each piece of it individually. The idea that science is too impartial and apolitical to follow a metanarrative is contradictory to the very existence of science. Science once defined itself and its claim to reason as the very essence of humanity, as the higher purpose of humanity’s existence and as proof of humanity’s superiority. Without the idea of collecting, cataloguing and expanding all the knowledge of humanity, science would never have existed much less had a singular goal to follow with such religious zeal. The scientific community needs to once more clearly define its purpose.

It is not enough for science to be separated from malevolence by a few degrees to claim to be apolitical. The benefits to the scientific community of alliance with militaries and governments is a loss for collaboration and global knowledge. A movement which, for all its faults, existed to build commons knowledge for the betterment of humanity willingly walked into secret chambers to work for the destruction of humanity. Autonomy for groups in society is a privilege granted by the wider societies. This privilege can and should be lost when the group begins to act in a manner which is a danger to the wider society. The autonomy and trust enjoyed by many in the higher stratas of knowledge, religion and politics has been proven repeatedly to be dangerous to all of their out groups. These groups can no longer be organized in isolated and autonomous stratas. The work of scientists affects entire communities not in their stratas. Input from and transparency to the rest of the user groups is essential.

Excerpted from Autonomy, Diversity, Society. Citations will be transferred when I get a minute.

Transcript from talk about Getgee

Donate

The short version of this talk is that we don’t need to rewrite any of the existing social media applications that are out  there like Twitter, or Facebook, or Google or any of the rest of them. The reason I’d like you all to remember that one thing is because it seems like every week for the last many years, I receive an invitation to the beta site of the next social media platform that is going to replace the existing big platforms, or a new search engine. So much money and time and code. And I know a lot of you probably use alternative social media, but none of these alternatives have come within hailing distance of Twitter or Facebook or any of the existing platforms. And they are never going to. And the reason they are never going to is because none of them address the reasons why all of the big platforms are in service to the highest bidder instead of us, why they were tempted to become evil and what gave them the ability to become evil.

So what I’d like to do today is go over what I feel are the main problems preventing us from having productive collaborative tools on the Internet and reliable knowledge repositories and then I’d like to suggest how we can resolve those problems once and for all.

The biggest problems I can see to collaboration on the Internet can all come under one of three headings which are noise, thought bubbles and truth dictatorships. So noise …

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This is not the most illustrative slide I could have used, I chose this of course so I can show you all that for all the years Klout had this Top Influencers feature, I was either the second or third influencer to the man who is currently the Prime Minister of Canada. Right behind Justin Beiber. I can guarantee you if I had any real influence over this man, many of his policies would be very different. And I’m pretty sure Justin Beiber doesn’t have much influence over him either.

But on social media as it is today, this picture, this perception of influence, can translate into real influence. To the point that the former Prime Minister of Canada actually had a very hyped photo op with Justin Beiber because the perception is that Justin Beiber’s influence is so great that he can amplify the Prime Minister of Canada.

The reason for that is we are governed by ponzi schemes of celebrity, wealth and power and in order to benefit from these ponzi schemes, we need to enable and support them. No one has ever become wealthy by being of assistance to someone trying to survive in the streets. No one has ever become a millionaire by raising a baby. If you want to acquire wealth, you need to be of service to the wealthy so they can distribute that wealth down to you. And in order to gain influence, you need to promote and agree with and amplify those with greater influence so they can raise you up. And just as crypto-currencies did nothing to change this algorithm online, social media did nothing to change the ponzi scheme of celebrity. All either of them did is reproduce the same algorithm with all of the physical barriers lifted, so we have the same ponzi schemes but now the results are instant, we have overnight crypto currency millionaires and instant social media celebrities. We need algorithms which reward us for being of service to those who need it most and we have algorithms that reward us for being of service to those who need it least.

The reason these ponzi schemes are preventing us from having useful collaboration is because not only is celebrity not real influence, the two are mutually exclusive.

What celebrity means is you are riding the peak of the wave of socially acceptable opinion. You already appeal to the widest audience. It means you have no thoughts in opposition to acceptable mainstream opinion, celebrities reflect the opinions we all already know and agree with. You are not a voice that is seldom heard, by definition, and you definitely don’t speak at a level of elite expertise that is difficult for all but a few to understand. Celebrity is Donald Trump. Someone who speaks at a grade 3 level. The more easily understood and the less challenging your message, the wider your appeal will be. Celebrities are the status quo so amplifying celebrities is just creating more noise for the status quo, and making it harder to find anything innovative or understand anything challenging.

So it is counter intuitive to think celebrities can influence us to move in a new direction. If we want to hear the voices that are seldom heard, that expand our Overton windows and give us some fresh perspective, or require some elite level of knowledge to explain some breakthrough of the kind we require to solve the problems in front of us today, amplifying celebrities is the exact opposite of what we ought to be doing.

The other noise the Internet has brought us is astroturfing.

bots

A few years ago if you said something was astroturfing, people would look at you like you needed a tinfoil hat, but now this has become so mainstream most states brag about their cyber warfare and their cyber armies. This is all that is. It is propaganda designed to drown out all information the states and corporations who pay for it don’t want you to see. For those of you who don’t spend a lot of time on social media, this is what it looks like. Every time this man was in the news, for years, the Internet would be hit on all forums, on article comments and on social media by these bot armies. These ones have avatars of horses and dogs, sometimes they have eggs or the canadian flag, but they all do the same thing which is fill all the forums with aggressive and unintelligible comments that just serve to tie this person to certain keywords, in this case terrorism.

Astroturfing is really annoying. It can be intimidating or frightening, some of it is really aggressive. It contributes a great deal to all the noise we have to wade through looking for signal. It is frustrating, you never know if you are talking to a real person or wasting your time with a bot, and it is very chilling to online conversation. It has made Twitter especially almost unusable for rational conversation.

The next problem is probably the most disappointing to those of us who were around when the Internet became a thing.

Thought bubbles

The most exciting thing for most of us I think in the early days of the Internet or even bbs’s, the most exciting thing was being able to connect with people who you never dreamed you would ever be able to connect to. And I don’t just mean people across the world, we have google translate so now we can understand them, but people with perspectives that you would never dream you would be able to have a conversation with, much less find empathy and common ground, but if you talked to them long enough you began to find that you do have common ground and you begin to understand their viewpoint a little more even if you don’t agree with it. You can begin to make some accommodations and sometimes we even change each others opinions online.

But it turns out this only happens until a forum reaches a certain size. Once a forum has reached a certain size and the people there have spent enough years with each other and discussed enough topics and reached some consensus around many topics, what happens is they start to create their own culture and develop their own ideas of what are acceptable viewpoints, and their own ideas that it is taboo to hold just like all cultures do. And then what happens when an opposing viewpoint comes into these forums is they are pushed out and shunned till they go off and create their own little thought bubbles of people who agree with them. And just as they weren’t allowed to participate in the main forums, they push out everyone who disagrees with them. And they bring all the supporting documentation that supports only their ideas. Then Facebook and Google see what they are interested in and feed them even more information in support of their views. So they begin to see only one viewpoint ever and they live in this little purified thought bubble where only their thoughts exist, just like the main larger forum is also now living in a purified thought bubble, but this thought bubble is created in opposition to the thought in the main bubble. So it is like a little cancer there. It is like an auto-immune disease that the wider society is usually not even aware it has or it doesn’t take them seriously until you get someone like an Elliot Rodger who comes out and kills a bunch of people they have been taught to hate.

Then when that does happen, the wider society does not typically come out and say, Oh, we have alienated all of these people, how did that happen and what can we do to re-establish communication and reach some common ground? What usually happens is the smaller group is vilified even more and shunned even harder so they become even more alienated and it creates an even deeper divide.

We have always had sectarianism, of course, sectarianism has been with the world for a very long time, but it used to be something that happened more between you and people ‘over there’, people you never saw or communicated with. Now thanks to the Internet we can never communicate with people we live right next door to and the sectarianism is more and more within our own societies. And yes, a lot of it was always there as classism, sexism, racism and other bigotry that was just painted over and the thought bubbles are useful to be able to be heard and explore things you can’t in wider society, but there reaches a point where the divergent viewpoints need to come together and seek resolution and that is where we are failing.

Also this is not all happening organically, definitely it is also something that is being helped along by the same type of people who brought us astroturfing, there are people on the internet who are there to promote division, and profiting from it. But whether it is organic or manufactured it is a problem we need to address.

This next slide I always feel should be Wikipedia’s landing page.

One truth

These are what I call truth dictatorships. This is where you have group of people and they all have to come to consensus, they all have to agree, and what they are looking for is the truth. So they all have to fight about which is the truthiest truth, and once they have lined up all their truthy truths they have to rank them all in order of importance. These truth dictatorships are of course great at promoting the status quo, and celebrity ponzi schemes, they create thought bubbles, but they have a special added feature I call photoshopping. Photoshopping is where you take every story and you just erase everything that doesn’t suit your world view by saying it’s not the most relevant part of the story. Wikipedia is great at this, you can spend weeks clicking through that site and never find anyone that is not a caucasian man. I used to say women didn’t need anonymity, we all come with built in proxy routing, everything we say is routed through the nearest man. But actually there are many parts of society that could say that.

But here is an unusual example.

jillsteingoogle

Here is a person who is running for president of the United States, for the second time. But there is nothing on her Google blurb to indicate that. That wouldn’t be at all unusual if she was from anywhere else in the world, but if there is one group of people at the pinnacle of the celebrity ponzi scheme it is the US. Their never ending spectacle of an election is impossible to escape on any media but especially on Google.

marcorubio.PNG

Here is what Google shows for every candidate from the two main parties, and this is his first run and he did not even get the nomination of his party. But there is a huge amount of information on all of his policies on every topic, it is really obvious that he is running for the presidency. This is what you get for the candidates from either of the two main parties but not any third party candidates.

But Google is just a search engine. It is obvious they got their blurb from Wikipedia, they probably got the policy information from another third party site, so this isn’t really fair. Google can’t help what it finds on the Internet. So let’s just ask them.

Google, who is running for president of the United States?

google

And they flat out lie. We can’t blame this on anyone else, this is Google’s answer and they flat out lie. We didn’t ask who are the candidates from the two main parties, we asked who is running, end of, and they photoshopped out everyone else.

And if you like we can click that article below from the New York Times with the same heading to see how mainstream media does

nyt

And we get the same thing. Photoshopped again.

So this is where social media would really shine. When you can’t trust the big corporations like Google and NYT, we can rely on each other to keep ourselves informed, that’s why social media was so exciting.

So let’s look at this same candidate on Twitter.

jillsteintwitter

Those of you who don’t follow a lot of people from the US on Twitter probably don’t see what’s strange about this, but Twitter has this thing called blue checks. What Twitter says a blue check means is it means that you are really important. It means you are a real person, and you are an extremely important person. What it actually means is you are from the US and you are probably a caucasian man. For years, no African heads of state had blue checks and most don’t even now. Outside of the US it is very difficult to get a blue check. But within the US, the most tenuous connection to politics, to tech, to journalism, to Twitter’s frat boy parties … the most random people have blue checks.

So you can see how this would be really confusing if you lived in the US and you wanted to know who you can vote for in your federal election. This person says she’s a third party candidate, but she can’t be a very serious candidate because she doesn’t even have a blue check and even the neighbour boy down the street has one.

And that’s what photoshopping is. If she doesn’t exist, you can’t vote for her.

So, noise, thought bubbles and truth dictatorships.

The problem here is not with the software, it is the way the web was designed. Just like crypto-currency did not change the algorithm that creates ponzi schemes of wealth and social media did not change the algorithm that brought us ponzi schemes of celebrity, the web did not change the ponzi schemes of information and it was not designed to. The web was created to mirror academia. Isolated pages of information citing other isolated pages of information. It was never designed for mass collaboration. We hear so much about walled gardens, but the Internet is a series of sealed wells. Even if we have access to everything on the surface, we do not have access to the information in the wells that is feeding all the life on the surface. And to add insult to injury, we created everything in those wells.

logos

Look at these logos for a minute. And think about the amount of money each of these logos represents. The last I checked, alibaba was worth 65 billion. Uber is worth 60 billion. Airbnb is over 25 billion. And what do these corporations do? In every case, these corporations are a page that seals a well of user created information. The only service they provide is web hosting. Yes, I know they have written a lot of front end software and many of them have released a lot of great software to the open source community and that’s great, but that is not where the value is. If it was we wouldn’t be getting it for free. The value is in what the users created, our data.

And think about the control these corporations exercises over all of our data, which is our work, our networks. From monitoring our shopping habits to Facebook deciding to what mood we are in or whether we vote.

There is no point in creating another Twitter, another Facebook, another Google, another thought bubble with its own sealed well that doesn’t address any of these problems.

This control of user information is what created the fertile ground for corruption in the first place. Control corrupts. Absolute control corrupts absolutely.

We have free software. We are working on free networks. We need free databases.

So if we were to release all these 100s or 1000s of billions of dollars worth of value and put it back into the global commons and return control to the people who created this data, how would we do that? How would we create a universal global commons database that we were all free to use in any way we like?

gsearch

So given that we want to deal with a database, here is a little 2 button app that does everything we ever do with databases. We can search, or we can log in and create, update and delete. And there are five entity types that I think will allow us to do everything we do in any of those applications. 

What these entities are is stripped down atomic objects that we can use to create larger meaning from. If you look at me as an object, any attributes you were to identify are very subjectively important. I used to say my official documentation decided the most important things about me were my name, date of birth and gender and they could just as easily have used my eye colour but now my official documentation does not require gender and it does require an iris scan so I guess someone agreed with me. But almost anything you can say is very subjectively important and changeable, so these are extremely stripped down entities. A person node is only an optional start and end date, usually correlating to date of birth and date of death, and a name. And we can all agree on just a name as a base data node we can all link to, right?

Of course not. 

chelseasearch

How many of you remember what happened on Wikipedia when Chelsea changed her name from Bradley Manning to Chelsea Manning? If you missed this you really should look it up. It is the most perfect illustration of why we can’t have nice things in truth dictatorships. It was amazing, days of war waged over, who is the official authority for Chelsea’s name? Does she get to decide what her name is, or is her government the authority we should listen to? Or maybe we should rely on the journalists who write about her to decide. Was she more relevant when she was called Chelsea or when she was called Bradley, and should we use that to decide what her name should be? This is why we can’t have nice things in co-operative dictatorships.

The answer is really easy, Wikipedia.

bradleychelsea

These are two temporal realities of the same object. This is a hypernode. She was Bradley, now she’s Chelsea. It doesn’t matter which you choose, no one is going to argue with you, and your work will still appear associated with this same object.

These are temporal realities, she was Bradley, now she’s Chelsea, but there are also other kinds of realities.

malvinaspaper

Here is a perceptive reality. Las Malvinas, The Falklands, or if you are the UN and you just don’t want to get into it, they are still the same islands and whichever you choose, your work will still appear. Or if you like, you can call them The Penguin Rocks. Go for it, create a new reality, call them The Penguin Rocks, nobody cares, you don’t have to ask permission and no one is going to stop you, they will still be linked to the same rocks in the middle of the ocean.

But this brings us to a problem. How are people to know that The Penguin Rocks are not a name that serious people call these islands? There are couple of ways we can get around that. First, we can let them say they are joking, put a little fiction toggle on that reality and anyone can choose to filter it out. And the second is we use trust networks. We don’t have likes, we don’t have stars, or hearts or friends or followers, we have trust networks. A trust network is exactly like it sounds, people whose judgement we rely on. If you filter your search results within 2 or 3 degrees of your trust network and these Penguin Rocks don’t show up, it’s a good chance they are spam or astroturfing or trolls. So as long as you keep your trust network clean we are back to a place where we can actually work with the Internet again and we can filter out all those people who have made collaborating on the Internet impossible for all these years.

So we have three reality types, we have temporal, perceptive, and linguistic which is just like it sounds. And we have 5 entity types. And the reason we have these different reality and entity types by the way is because they have slightly different attributes so we can do things like attach geotags to events and organizations and map them or string temporal realities along in a timeline. So that’s nice. But it’s still not terribly useful or meaningful. There’s still not much we can do with this as an application. We have a global commons of data, we can all pull from it, that’s nice but in order to actually pull any meaning from it, if you look at me again as an object, there is very little you can say about me without relating me to another data object. I did this for this organization, I was this to this person, I did that at that event.

Usually these types of relationships are part of a schema that is part of the application developed by programmers. If this is ebay there is a programmer somewhere saying this is a buyer, this is a seller, this is a product and so on. But these things do not have to be coded by programmers and in fact they shouldn’t be. Programmers don’t know how users are going to use their data. People are always going off and doing peculiar things with the data and then programmers have to change the schema and it is usually difficult. So we can just allow users to create category trees like this to map all possible categories for each of the 5 entity types and every relationship between them.

tree

This is beyond the ability or the interest of the average user, to create a schema for all these relationships, but it is not beyond the ability of a data analyst with knowledge of the sector. This is like blog themes, a blog platform gives you the ability to create blogs but if nice people create themes for it they provide more versatility and usability for a greater number of use cases. So if data analysts create category trees, users can pull them in to use in their own work.

If you remember the little 2 button app I showed you earlier, there were three places you could create. One was the Universe which had all the data nodes in the global commons, but there were also constellations and galaxies. A constellation is your own autonomous space where you can work by yourself or add editors or open it up to however many degrees of your trust network. In a constellation, you can take data nodes out of the data commons, use a category tree that some nice person has made and map all your data.

Here is a database most of you are probably familiar with. It’s called littlesis.org and it’s great.

littlesis

This is really nice, someone has written a little d3 front end and they let you embed this graph in your work or share it on social media or export the data. But it’s still a sealed well. If you want to add any data to it, or add any front end functionality, you have to go through littlesis. Or export the data to your own sealed well and not collaborate with them at all. If this was on G, that little 2 button app we saw earlier, anyone could use the exact same category schema and create data in the exact same format as this. If you tapped on one of these nodes you would see everyone else’s work associated with it, even if they used entirely different category trees or had completely different ideas of what was important. Imagine if this was the Panama Papers data. ICIJ could have just created a constellation and added them all as editors and just mapped the data as they found it for us all to see. Then we could create our same constellations around the same data nodes so they could see oh, that person was also involved in this corporation, we should run a search on everyone else in that corporation as well. And even if they still hoarded all of the data, we could share information from the beginning and it would have been so much faster and more productive. And we would have the data in a usable format. They actually did use linkurious to map it all, we could have had all that in a global commons for us all to build from instead of these unusable wall of text articles everywhere.

And you could add any front end functionality you want.

ecosystem

Usually in an app you just have the programmers and the users. But once we decouple the database and the trust networks we’ve got the core programmers for the database, the data analysts who create the category trees, the researchers and journalists who map everything in constellations, and then the users can take those constellations and add their own meaning and functionality. Suppose you were a taxi driver. You could create a constellation of all your local taxi drivers, and then someone else could gather all the constellations of all the taxi drivers and have a global database of taxi drivers. Novel new idea. We just took 60 billion dollars worth of value from Uber. Or you could filter that database down to just your region and within one degree of trust and you can download that galaxy onto your phone and add a little bit of front end software that adds functionality for you like paying your taxi driver.

Or if you are a politician, suppose you are a pirate politician and you have a blog, but you also belong to the pirate party of Germany and an international galaxy someone has created of all the environmental groups from all the pirate constellations. Now you can add blogs at every level, or loomio decision making software, or schedules or whatever you like.

Because now that we have split out the databases and trust networks, all those unicorn corporations we saw earlier are reduced to their real value which is bits of front end software that provide some collaborative tool or whatever it is they do.

And now users have their choice back. If any of that software starts antagonizing its users, they can just get rid of it and use something else and they will not lose all the work and the networks they have spent years building up. And they can choose the functionality they want. They don’t have to go through facebook for everything whether they are logged in or not, they can have a little stripped down read only app on their phone and a giant application on their laptop because it is not one product now it is an ecosystem, anything can be replaced without destroying the whole. And it doesn’t matter what application you use, you can still collaborate with everyone else because that happens at the data level.

So we have a way to filter out astroturfing and spam. We don’t have celebrity ponzi schemes now because it is all about the people doing the work. We can isolate ourselves but we can’t create community thought bubbles, everyone has control of their own information. We have diversity of opinion and we allow for different realities. And we can let our own trust networks decide what we want to be shown and not leave it up to Facebook and Google.

Right now I’m rewriting this in React and Meteor 1.3. If anyone wnts to help, money is welcome, pull requests are welcome.

How we came to be ruled by Death Eaters

There are two primary methods of coercion used to enforce societal norms. The most visible is hard coercion, apparent in militias and police as well as courts, prisons, and institutional force of all kinds. The far more powerful form, without which the hard coercion would not be tolerated, is seductive coercion.

Seductive coercion comes in two forms. The first is used to create society and involves social acceptance and approval as motivators. This form of seductive coercion produces love, loyalty, and other forms of social bonding.

The second form is used to create hate and enmity and to reject another society, go to war against them or persecute them in another way. This form of coercion uses group affiliation, fear, dehumanizing propaganda and dissociation.

There are well known, although poorly understood, hormonal responses which help build both hate and love. Both are intense responses to others which are dependent on some shared experience, even if only through propaganda. Often the most intense hate is produced in the same populations which formerly experienced the most intense love, such as in civil wars or familial breakups. 

Both hate and love and the lesser emotions around them are measures of social approval. In the past, all societies used an approval economy to measure acceptance or shunning of each other. Acceptance was not simply an emotional boost, it was inclusion into the social circle which allowed access to essentials of life such as shared food, shelter and procreation. Rejection by shunning was very frequently a death sentence or at least condemnation to an extremely difficult, stressful and shortened life. At best it would mean starting all over again by trying to gain acceptance into a new society.

Dissociation

In order to create the dissociated ponzi schemes of power currently governing society, human relationships had to be replaced with the trade economy. Trade economy replaced societal approval with approval based on each person’s ability to be of service to the powerful. The trade economy eventually interrupted almost all social relationships and replaced them with industry. Social approval was replaced with currency to the point that a person’s worth is now commonly given as a currency value. Currency is a powerful seductive tool because it allows acceptance into the most privileged spots of all societies with no effort required to gain social approval or accept the norms and values of the society.

In those cultures where women and children had autonomy, patriarchy had to be instilled at the family level as the essential building block to patriarchal governance. As the trade economy created waged labour only for those who were serving the wealthy and left community and family service unpaid, women were placed at a huge disadvantage under the trade economy and made to rely solely on a father or husband for the currency which had become social approval. The marriage partnership became dissociated and turned into a master-slave or employer-employee relationship instead of one built on mutual social approval. Matriarchal societies were destroyed as the approval or ability to shun which had been the power of the women in those communities was now worthless and whoever possessed currency needed no one’s approval for societal acceptance.

The industrialization of jobs meant that work is no longer a shared and bonding community experience. The commodification of goods and services has taken sharing and giving out of communities. The state run defence militias claims to remove the need for community solidarity and loyalty. NGOs commodified human empathy, state education commodified respect for community history and tribal knowledge, official government and process dissociated community from governing councils. All of these dissociative structures have removed community bonding experiences.

Cultures which do not greet by kissing and hugging, who handshake (the old greeting to show your enemy you held no weapons) or maintain distance with cold body language, are not producing the hormones necessary to create love and empathy for each other. In a dissociated western world where partners and parents spend little time with each other, much less their community, children are raised in physical bubbles and no one except close family and friends are supposed to touch, it is hard to imagine oxytocin and other hormone levels being socially optimal for bonding. Every transaction of approval, even between parent and child, has sometimes been replaced by an exchange of currency instead of a smile, a hug or a reciprocal gesture of approval. Social shyness and waiting for approval to be gifted has been replaced by taking approval as a right, demanded by all who possess currency. Social shyness is also strongly discouraged by the trade economy which rewards aggression and demands.

Although the exact combination of hormones optimal for bonding is still poorly understood, touch and psychological support are known to be essential for oxytocin production and less oxytocin usually results in more aggression and less caring. Patients with autism and psychiatric disorders have been found to improve with increased oxytocin levels. Cultures with common physical contact such as holding hands or maintaining less personal space, which share community jobs and local jokes and stories and are heavy sharing or gifting cultures, have far more bonding opportunities.

Sex, both social and anti-social

Within the next generation I believe that the world’s rulers will discover … the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience. – Aldous Huxley to George Orwell

When waged labour created a class division between men and women, they became rivals and the so-called war of the sexes began or was entrenched. There is a gender divide in coercion, with hard coercion typically considered the power of men due to their physical strength and seductive coercion considered the power of women, both because hard coercion was not usually an option for women and because they were primarily responsible for the care of society during its formative years. There is also a gender divide among sociopaths. Robert Hare estimated seven times more male sociopaths than female and it has been historically easier for male sociopaths to climb to positions of power. There is an even greater predominance of men within sexual sadism disorder which seems to be manifesting in the establishment wide torture and death cults of the UK and elsewhere.

Societies ruled by seductive coercion used talking, councils and shunning, while patriarchy ruled primarily by hard coercion, police, laws and prisons. A patriarchal power structure had to take control of seductive coercion, partly by demonizing and infantilizing women and  and partly by perverting seductive coercion for their own uses. Seductive coercion has increasingly become a powerful tool of the sociopathic oligarchy.

One of the most important tools in both social and anti-social seductive coercion is sex. Sex has been used to bond couples for communal support in child rearing, but it has also been used as a weapon of war throughout history. There are evidently two distinct types of sex, one bonding and social and the other extremely anti-social.

Oxytocin, believed to play a significant role in bonding, is produced by physical closeness such as breastfeeding, everyday physical contact, massage, tantric or Taoist sex, non-orgasmic sex, cuddling, relaxation, mental closeness, social acceptance, approval and emotional support.[1] Oxytocin is also produced by stress and orgasm, and while it will help bond allies, it will also increase hatred and a lack of empathy for those perceived as outside the social group.

Rape has gone from a by-product of war to a deliberate strategy of war, whether by militia commanders in the DR Congo telling their fighters that rape will bring them magic powers or by Israel and their constant sexual war imagery and orders for war rape. It is one thing to look at the supposed motives for rape in destroying the targeted population, but we must also look at what is causing large populations of men to obey orders for mass raping and whether it is also being used as a tool to condition them hormonally to dehumanize, kill and torture their enemy. Is rape being used simply as a tool against the victims, or is it being used more to raise the level of hate in the fighter? It is possible that the DR Congo militia’s idea of rape as a tool of war for obtaining magic powers to beat their enemy is closer than the NGOs who describe it as a simple war crime.

Dopamine, is a very powerful hormone associated with addictive substances such as cocaine, mental illness such as schizophrenia, and the release of a reward hormone on learning or experiencing novel stimuli. Novel sexual experience causes a surge in dopamine, but the experience must keep changing which leads to a search for more and more extreme stimuli. After orgasm, dopamine levels plummet, leading to the addictive endless search for ever increasing levels of dopamine. The pornography that is the most popular is that which produces the dopamine highs and crashes and is therefore addictive. That is also the type which requires ever-increasing stimulation to reach the same dopamine levels and produces no bonding hormones. While sexual sadism disorder has probably been with us forever, child abuse and snuff film industries were almost exclusively created, not born. 

State and corporate control of women’s sexuality was necessary because it was a powerful coercive tool. Misogyny centres around hatred of coercion, particularly suspected but poorly understood female coercion. From the first ruling of the Catholic Church that sex should be for the purposes of procreation only, sex has been changed from the type that releases bonding hormones to the type that more closely resembles anti-social rape. Non-orgasmic sex, once used for birth control and enjoyment, was decreed sinful by the church and male orgasm became the only point to sex. Sexual contact outside male orgasm was frequently eliminated completely, which would hypothetically greatly reduce the amount of bonding hormones produced between a couple. At the same time, breast feeding was also strongly discouraged and hospitals and other institutions removed infants and children from parental care, reducing familial bonding levels still further.

Heavily dopamine producing sex, from brief encounters with sex workers, rape, pornography, and any other form of ‘hate-sex’ continued and increased as the bonding community and family life was removed. Corporate advertising removed sex progressively farther from a form of approval to a product of the trade economy. Military produced games and movies conflated sex with every form of war and violence as did the news media and the military itself. The UK media call torture, murder and dismemberment of children ‘child sex’ and ‘paedophilia’ as does the UK government’s Child Sex Abuse inquiry. Dissociated populations which no longer produced hormones at community bonding levels were taught to crave dopamine with increasingly violent and risk-taking behaviour, drugs and consumerism.

The same gratification conditioning is fed by addictions of all kinds, from drugs to addictive, harmful, and sometimes anti-social foods. The US military is developing an ‘anti-suicide’ hormonal nasal spray which is suppressing guilt, presumably through suppressing empathy, in militia members who have seen or committed atrocities. It is as ridiculous to deny the importance of stimulus choices in determining our social development as it would be to deny the importance of exercise choices in determining our muscle development. Seductive coercion and behaviour conditioning is present in every aspect of life worldwide. There is nothing at all new in this, it has always been this way. What is new is seductive coercion is now being controlled by an all-pervasive, sociopathic oligarchy who keep both their methods and their goals as state and corporate secrets and remove all choice from the society.

Freedom

“Social order at the expense of liberty is hardly a bargain.” – Marquis de Sade

The freedom espoused in the rhetoric surrounding both the French and US revolutions was a very anti-social freedom. What began as a rejection of the patriarchy or state, continued as a rejection of society and a promotion of extreme freedom for those best suited to a trade economy. The pursuit of happiness became a right of any who could command it through strength to survive in an economy completely rigged in favour of the small fraternity steering both the French and US revolutions. The hated patriarchy was overthrown and replaced by the fraternity, a decentralized patriarchy without the responsibility inherent in the role. Social approval was necessary for nothing as the fraternity used currency as their dissociated approval to command all of society’s benefits. Social obligation became so dissociated from the now monetized approval that it was left to the charitable intervention of the vilified patriarchal state and fought against alongside the rejection of the state.

The sex life of the Marquis de Sade is a perfect metaphor for the actions of both his compatriots at the Jacobin Club during the Terror and the sociopathic oligarchy of today. De Sade was against the death penalty and insisted no one should ever be found guilty for anything done in the pursuit of pleasure, while his idea of pleasure involved escalating levels of torture and murder of unwilling victims. Life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness was always intended for the fraternity only, and the rhetoric has never matched the actions toward any outside the fraternity.

In lieu of any other understanding of the nature of the motivations of our current sociopathic oligarchy, it is not unreasonable to expect they get the same gratification from the torture, murder and destruction of their day jobs as the Marquis de Sade did from his pursuit of pleasure. With the revelations of the current ‘child sex’ inquiry into the UK establishment death cult it seems almost certain they do. Those with sexual sadism disorder do not have to indulge in any behaviour that normative people would consider sex, and do not even have to be directly involved in an act, so it is very likely that ordering wars and mass guillotine executions worked just as well for their arousal as individual torture. For those with lesser power, ordering a snuff film would also work. It is impossible to look at the war horrors combined with media sexual imagery and not see the mirror image of the child torture and death cult and media sexualization of it.

The trade economy decreed that all was for sale and everyone has a right to anything they can purchase, with no social obligations. The requirement of approval from society is presented as a horror, social obligation is depicted as robbery. ‘Freedom’ advocates were outraged at the recent #takedownjulienblanc campaign because his anti-social behaviour was restricted by a societal right to associate or not and his currency approval was not enough to buy him acceptance and access to all the privileges of belonging to all the nations in the world.

Instead of researching known contributors to dissociative personality and behaviour, societies are encouraged to embrace dissociated behaviour as ‘diversity’ and ‘freedom’, to look for unconditional acceptance instead of understanding. Any suggestion of understanding or coercing individual behaviour triggers memories of CIA brain-washing, Clockwork Orange, or Thought Reform and produces revulsion in the same populations that accept the extremely coercive and behaviour-modifying death penalty. Talk of open, societal, behaviour coercion is greeted with the same horror that once followed any suggestion of heart or brain surgery. Meanwhile, those same agencies responsible for the earlier state horrors of behaviour modification experiments have progressed to the point that no one even acknowledges their coercive social engineering.

Free will is a deeply cherished myth for many. The idea that free will is real and social auto-coercion is an attack on freedom has allowed seductive coercion to be completely controlled by an invisible corporate oligarchy which modifies everyone’s behaviour through games, food, drugs, media, dissociative structures, anti-social laws, propaganda and more. Social approval has been replaced by currency, control of social coercion has been taken by an invisible oligarchy of intelligence and corporate propagandists, control of mental health has been usurped by those feeding drugs, foods and environmental conditions that cause mental disorders.

In the past, the practice of shunning was sometimes abused and there were always people considered lesser or not accepted into certain societies for reasons most would deem unfair. Any form of coercion that can be influenced by popularity or power is corruptible. Today, people who do not feel welcomed or appreciated by one society should have freedom of movement to join another. Societies which unfairly persecute one of their members are susceptible to being shunned themselves. In OpMaryville, Anonymous retaliated against a community which had shunned a rape victim and her family in favour of her far more locally powerful rapists. The BDS and BlockTheBoat campaigns allow outside nations (independently of states) to shun Israel for their genocidal and apartheid policies. Today we have the ability to provide an instant global appeal court for any individual who feels their rights are being violated by their society.

It is impossible to deny that those in power globally are both sadists and sociopaths. It would not be difficult to manage the world peacefully, with enough resources, autonomy for all and aid in times of disaster. It is not necessary to continue to destroy the environments we live in. The horrific and genocidal big three criminal industries of human, drugs and weapons trafficking are all enabled and run by those in power. It is not enough to replace the sociopaths in power, the system which created them rewards and creates both sadism and sociopathy. Nothing less than a completely new system with new social motivators and norms will remove sadism and sociopathy from the seats of power.

Seductive coercion is a constant in society. To reject social auto-coercion is to accept tyrannical secret coercion.

– – –

See also:

Free will and seductive coercion

Witches and how they were silenced

An economy for all

Society vs dissociation

Sociopaths, Psychopaths and Death Eaters

[1] Discussion of social hormones and the types of sexual and social interactions producing them is both grossly oversimplified and poorly cited here out of necessity. It is important to recognize their role in society, but studies are far too incomplete and contradictory to give any definitive statements or cite any particular study as a final authority. There are many other hormones and environmental combinations at work than those suggested here, and research and beliefs regarding the connection between sex and hormonal balance is found in many places outside science. In lieu of specific citations, I would encourage the interested reader to conduct independent research into Taoist sex, tantric sex, sex therapy, various forms of ritual magic, magick, satanism and other occult practises related to gaining power through sex, porn addiction, sex in advertising, oxytocin, dopamine, prolactin, androgens, seratonin, cortisol, endorphins and more. I do not endorse the claims found in any of those places. The point of this article is not to point to definitive answers but to suggest where we should be looking for them.

This article has been stigmergicly translated into French.

A mythical Manichean world

“I know there is a God because in Rwanda I shook hands with the devil.” ― Roméo Dallaire, Shake Hands With The Devil

In Shake Hands with the Devil, Romeo Dallaire, former head of the UN mission to Rwanda, described shaking hands with commanders of the Hutu militias responsible for the 1994 Tutsi genocide. He felt he was in the presence of evil, or, to his Christian outlook, the devil. When faced with incomprehensible savagery it is hard to find human nature behind it and natural to look for some invisible hand of evil. The same outlook is understandable to some in west African countries, where the leaders have for years been suspected of complicity in ritual killings, or torturing their own citizens and using their body parts as amulets for power. Compulsory membership of politicians in certain Masonic lodges and the undeniable power and wealth wielded by the powerful, support both the cult rumours and the presumed effectiveness of evil forces being invoked. These so-called powers are also sought by some militias.

If a person is thought to embody evil in themselves, the person is demonized in the eyes of the other. Once a large group has designated another entire group as evil, actions no longer matter. The ensuing war will have nothing to do with good actions and bad actions and everything to do with one side exterminating the other. Those facing the side designated as evil are then depicted as Good, and any behaviour of theirs will be justified thereafter as can be seen in the excuses made for Rwanda actions even today. Some groups can carry their indestructible Good status in the face of all evidence of their actions for generations and against completely different opponents, as we see with Israel and the fact that they still have defenders justifying their ‘right’ to torment and murder others.

Countries that have had an acknowledged atrocity are much more self aware and able to recognize and stop new ones. If an atrocity is outside the Overton window of what a people will believe about themselves they will deny it happened or ignore it. For Canadians, the pull of the manufactured self-image of ‘nice’ is too attractive to confront, even when faced with human rights and environmental disasters Canada is responsible for worldwide. To acknowledge that global mining atrocities are a fundamental part of Canada, that a Canadian child has now been tortured and imprisoned for the thirteenth year, that these actions cannot be blamed on one government but are part of Canada itself, is an attack on their self-image that many Canadians refuse to face. The US was previously the same with their acceptance of ‘freedom’ propaganda and their refusal to see their own police state as anything but protection.

A good guy / bad guy, personality based morality is very helpful for any who wish to wage wars or destroy the lives of others. No one has to think, just identify the Good Guys and the Bad Guys, be for the one, beware the other. We really don’t need legions of security analysts, militaries and intelligence to sort out Good Guys from Bad Guys. Bad Guys are destroying, killing, enslaving and robbing, Good Guys are creating, researching and caring for others. Bad Guys are capable of becoming Good Guys as soon as they stop the actions harmful to society and start the ones helpful to society.

The myth of free will and the myth of equality

I was one of those children forced into fighting at the age of 13, in my country Sierra Leone, a war that claimed the lives of my mother, father and two brothers. I know too well the emotional, psychological and physical burden that comes with being exposed to violence as a child or at any age for that matter. – Ishmael Beah

In order to designate someone as evil and deserving of any horror that the powerful wish to inflict on them, they must be held personally responsible for the actions of themselves and their ‘side’. In order to hold people personally responsible even for their own actions, the public must believe they had free will, something that does not exist. The idea of personal responsibility also depends on an assumption that people have equal access to information and the ability to process it. Propaganda and coercion which comes from the top is denied and blame is cast to those at the bottom who acted upon it. The propaganda masters convince the public that the weak-minded and the vulnerable must take responsibility for acting as the zombie army of the powerful who are absolved of responsibility.

For punishment to be applied equally to all, the public must believe that all are equal, which is also falseThe myth of equality is essential for sustaining this binary outlook and careful censoring of information is essential to maintaining the myth of equality. ‘Hamas is evil, bomb Gaza’ cannot stand in the face of relentless social media pictures of babies, beautiful children and wonderful people well-known to the online community being blown up by Israel. ‘Boko Haram is evil, Nigeria military should kill them all’  is shocked by images of little boys fighting and being killed on both sides or Nigeria military torturing a little girl working for Boko Haram. Hillary Clinton deplores the loss of imperial control over information and Netanyahu bitterly calls his victims “telegenically dead“. The old media control which depicted all enemies of militias as adult men with guns was essential to justify any war.

We have a tendency to think of our villains as geniuses or assume they at least have the ability to predict the outcome of their actions but for those filling prisons and dying in wars that is not always the case.

While most people recognize the ability to rehabilitate child soldiers, what of those who are not rehabilitated? If they do not bear responsibility as children, why does the responsibility for their formation descend upon them as adults? How can anyone presume to know what has happened to the mind of anyone who has lived completely different experiences than them and possesses a completely different mind?

If it is agreed that charges should only be applied to criminals who have attained a certain standard of cognitive ability, why is the same penalty applied to all at that point? If the spectrum of ability and advantage continues above the line labeled competent, should the penalties not be a corresponding spectrum? If they must attain a standard of cognitive ability, why are moral imbeciles judged by the same standards as the socially normative? Why is sociopathy not recognized as a mental illness if insanity is? What if sociopathy is a physical disease? What of those with fetal alcohol syndrome and other forms of physical brain damage that currently fill prisons and militias?

The role of drugs in convincing militias to commit atrocities and overcome guilt is seldom reported. Not only non-state militias employ drugs, the US military even has a follow up anti-guilt nasal spray to prevent troops from feeling natural remorse.

Not all opponents are worthy of hate.

Social auto-coercion

Few believe that all of their own ancestors should have been wiped out, but everyone has ancestors who displayed what we like to call inhuman characteristics. Why do we believe they are absolved from the personal responsibility we bear today if not because we accept the power of social coercion and social norms? If social coercion and social norms applied in the past, why is their power denied today? The US government acknowledged the power of seductive coercion with what they cynically called the battle for hearts and minds in Iraq. They of all people understand coercion and knew that their actions would have the opposite affect.

Any suggestion of deliberate social auto-coercion is met with howls from free will advocates, especially from the US, that bastion of personal freedoms perverted to suit corporate ends. Every intelligence agency in the world, all corporations and all militaries constantly manipulate public norms and behaviour, but an attempt for a community to regain control is depicted (by corporate media) as an attack on freedom and autonomy instead of the assertion of it.

People can somehow become convinced that if we only kill enough people, inherent goodness will shine from the survivors. In the end, we can’t kill enough people to make the world a kinder gentler place. We have proven enough times that there is no time and place immune to an outbreak of human savagery. UN peacekeeping is incompetent, political, and after the fact. We need societies resilient to violence. In the end we will need to understand each other and use social auto-coercion as we do after the horrors of every war in order to return to normal life. We need to start using it before the outbreak of any violence, not to stop Bad Guys but to stop bad actions. Instead of spending vast sums tracking individuals and their connections in the search for Bad Guys, we need to strengthen social auto-coercion and fight the coercion coming from sociopathic power.

For those who insist societies will never function without military and police hard coercion, societies worldwide did, very well. For those, usually the same people, who insist that seductive coercion is immoral, seductive coercion is what creates a society out of a group of disconnected people. For those who do not believe that coercion ought to be in the hands of the people, coercion ought never to be anywhere else. The only way to prevent coercion by a secret oligarchy is to use it as community.

“If we don’t harness their potential for good, their societies will continue to reap their capacity for evil.” ― Roméo Dallaire, They Fight Like Soldiers, They Die Like Children

Roméo Dallaire, Shake Hands With The Devill: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda (2003)

Ishmael Beah, Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier (2007)

Roméo Dallaire, They Fight Like Soldiers, They Die Like Children (2010)

This article has been stigmergicly translated into French. 

The other Battle for the Internet

In 1974, a group of sociopaths decided to change the world. They had ridden the wave of social activism pushing for equal rights for minorities in the 60s to conflate pedosadism with homosexuality and fight for its acceptance as just another personal choice of sexual preference. They (adults) fought for “children’s sexuality” as though children were a persecuted minority group fighting for their sexual freedom. In 1974 they formed the Pedophile Information Exchange, a propaganda movement that was more powerful than hasbara in dictating media coverage and influencing public dialogue. They campaigned for the complete removal of the age of consent (legalized sex with babies).

PIE was joined by The North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) in the US, the Paedophile Action for Liberation in the UK, the Australian Paedophile Support Group and others. They promoted terms like ‘moral hysteria’ for their opposition and ‘child-lovers’ for themselves. They worked with the UK National Council for Civil Liberties to direct media coverage of pedosadists and rape, normalizing guidelines still used today. They provided legal aid to those facing charges of pedosadism. They worked to conflate documentation of child abuse with pornography and free speech rights and they promoted pedosadism as the ‘sexual liberation’ of children and ‘free love’. They used the UK’s unequal age of consent of 16 for heterosexuals but 21 for homosexuals to push their issues through beside the fight for homosexual equality. They were the major propaganda arm of an international ring of pedosadists which has grown exponentially since then. Any doubts that their abuses were motivated by sadism, not love, and that they were part of the fabric of power, have been put to rest by the recent UK investigations. PIE was probably funded by the UK Government in the 1980s and they had an office address at the UK Home Office.

If you call a pedosadist a pedophile you are accepting their propaganda. Corporate media still very frequently write ‘sex with a child’ instead of rape and ‘child porn’ instead of child abuse documentation. The words rape and rapist appear in quotes constantly, and in conjunction with the words ‘accused’ and ‘alleged’ even after convicted far more often than words such as ‘murder’. UK media still use the term ‘rent-boy’ for victims of child abuse.

In the mid-1980s, and escalating dramatically into the 90s, something the pedosadist activists called the ‘sexual abuse movement’ and a ‘sexual inquisition’ created widespread revulsion for and awareness of pedosadism. Pedosadists were convinced that the media, which they and their sympathizers largely controlled, were persecuting them and blamed women as their primary ideological opponents. A 2005 paper argues the concept of paedophilia was a feminist attack on male normative sexuality. In 1984, PIE ostensibly ‘disbanded’, but in actuality retreated to primarily online and mailing list activity. A primary objective of PIE since its formation was networking between pedosadists for exchange of child victims, pedosadist houses, documentation of child abuse and related support. Online tools were used immediately for ‘secure’ networking.

By the mid-1990’s, this group and their propaganda were a very large influence on what became known as ‘Internet culture’. Their decades of immersion in propaganda techniques to change social norms overwhelmed disinterested others in online forums. Their rage at being ‘censored’ from mainstream media and not achieving their “utopian goals of the dissolution of the nuclear family and the abolition of the age of consent was directed at both women and those of the LGBT community who shunned them. They promoted dehumanization of both along with normalizing child abuse documentation as ‘free speech’ and ‘porn’.

Unofficial PIE stalked online forums and worked constantly to challenge social norms against them and instil hate for their opponents. Moral imbeciles taught the dismissal of moral ‘hysteria’ (that word used to dismiss anyone with a uterus since Hippocrates) and lately ‘social justice warriors’. They used their security knowledge, acquired of necessity to protect themselves from legal repercussions, to impress young boys newly arrived on the Internet and claim their position as elders to be emulated and shielded from criticism. The old talking points from the 70s were wrapped up as freedom and anarchy. New ideas of morality and rejection of adult norms were exciting to those just of an age to form their own principles. The wall of hate encouraged as ‘free speech’ against their old opponents protected their forums from outside influence. 

Unofficial PIE are the trolls who ‘attempt dialogue’ every time pedosadists are mentioned on the Internet. Their scripted 70’s talking points are everywhere. They co-opt every initiative which tries to counsel pedosadists with attempts to normalize it instead. So many people have absorbed PIE propaganda that most don’t even know the origin of what they are quoting. They use reason in public forums and hate in their safer forums, but the end goal is the same. 

Some media and politicians still leap to defend child abuse documentation under the banner of free speech with no concern for the continued trauma and invasion of privacy of their victims. Pedosadism advocates still maintain great influence and power. The exact same powerful people who have allowed human trafficking to become the most lucrative criminal career in the world, ahead of even weapons or drugs, have used ‘combating child porn’ as their excuse to restrict Internet freedom for everyone else, ensuring the wider population is suspicious of any attempt to combat pedosadists. The UK establishment which supported and attempted to normalize pedosadism is now conducting massive sweeps of people who accepted their propaganda while still refusing to investigate the high level complicity which promoted it. The criminalization of consumers of an industry created by the governing class is a reaction very reminiscent of the drug war or the war on terrorism.

Meanwhile the boys, and the girls who pretended to be boys, in the old pedosadist retreats have grown up. Many left for the more mainstream acceptable but still completely closed and moderated thought bubbles of reddit where feminists and masculinists go to percolate in closed forums of hate and othering which social auto-coercion cannot reach and where empathy cannot be learned. The same media which fostered and nurtured the division between men and women since its inception gleefully promote a he-said-she-said ‘Battle of the Sexes’. The thought bubbles have now produced self-proclaimed “pick up artists” who teach that the way to a woman’s heart is to use violence and humiliation against her.

But horrifyingly to the pedosadist propagandists, some of their most receptive protégés not only rejected their principles when they expanded their social group, they now openly combat pedosadists or use their principles against them. NAMBLA bemoans “Anonymous hipster vigilantes”, and their “partisan and paranoid” anti-pedosadist and anti-sociopath actions and old pedosadist Anon and their disciples do as well. The Internet hate machine they encouraged to mob little girls is deplored when it hates adult men. All the rules about free speech which are so sacrosanct when dehumanizing the weak collapse into hysteria when anyone says “white man”. The admonition to always disregard feelings is not to be applied to their feelings. ‘Anonymous is dead’  proclaim the few remaining apologists of the old PIE rules while thousands around the world carry on Anonymous without them.

Free will does not exist, there is always coercion. Representative democracy, NGOs which divide people into groups competing for advocacy, sensational corporate media and protected online thought bubbles create myopic societies with no empathy for those outside. Societies formed in these thought bubbles will always be challenged and perceive themselves as persecuted when they attempt to enter wider society. Censorship which prevents all voices from being heard is a tyranny of the majority or the powerful. Amplification controlled by corporate media and celebrity is governance by oligarchy.

The only way we will attain self-governance by auto-coercion is through free and open forums where every person is allowed to speak and the crowd chooses both who to amplify and what actions to shun.

World War III: Stateless ponzi schemes of power

A continuation of thoughts from World War III

The European empires brought their system of states and state governance to every part of the world they occupied. The trade economy then removed resource governance and distribution from states to multinational corporations. Collapse of state power and relevance has naturally followed the loss of the ability to manage and distribute resources, especially in those states where the the multinational occupation is headquartered outside their borders. State borders now exist largely as a means of corralling, cataloguing and controlling the people in them, the last asset under state control. This control is slipping even as people become more and more a commodity, and those in power are justly terrified of state control slipping further. As people in collapsing states struggle to remember what self-governance was and fall repeatedly into the libertarian dystopia of rule by trade mafia, the world’s powerful are quietly establishing a new structure of stateless elite circles to uphold them.

From resources to labour to The Meritocracy

It has been a long time since actual resources were required in order to make a fortune in the resource industry.The progression of dissociating wealth from product, and further distancing resource rich countries from wealth, has been ongoing. Also for some time, knowledge based industries have been replacing resource based industries at the top tiers of power. The 2014 Forbes list of the 400 richest billionaires in the US is unsurprisingly infested with tech entrepreneurs. This ongoing myiasis of the upper strata has been hailed as a new era of capitalism with a new industrious breed of maggots removing the decay and rot and bringing us into a brave new world of stateless crypto currency and hyphenated ideologies promising liberty and equality for the fraternity. The knowledge based industries produce what are marketed as self-made billionaires, elevated as a natural result of their own youthful ingenuity, natural ability and service to society.

The most interesting feature of this new wave (we are told) is their new way of working, the holistic care of their employees, their intolerance of bureaucracy, love of autonomy, self actualization, peer networks (peer everything, really) and most of all, their ability to create ingenious apps from nothing more than their own autonomous brain cells. Their funding is freely given to them from sources such as angel investors and Kickstarter campaigns, the media is voluntarily worshipful and immigration laws around the world recognize them as a special class of citizen. It is small wonder that the greatly increased life expectancy they enjoy is accepted as a righteous perquisite for the long awaited Übermenschen.

The US holds 30% of the world’s wealth, Forbes tells us. The US most certainly does not hold 30% of the world’s resources. Even less does it contribute 30% of the world’s labour. If the means of production are simply brain cells, it doesn’t hold 30% of those either. All of the listed technology fortunes are from the US. Forbes tells us this is due to “how they foster innovation” and reassures us that these tech entrepreneurs are indeed that marvellous creature, the ‘self-made billionaire’. The only justification Adam Smith and ilk could use to rationalize this outsized wealth would be that the exchange value of the products from the minds of this exceptional group were of such great benefit to so many. Bill Gates has a net worth of $76 billion, the same as 156 million people from the bottom. This could only have occurred in a free market (we are told) because the services Bill has provided, all by himself from his own ingenuity, have been of the same worth as the combined labour of 156 million other humans.

Screen shot 2014-10-03 at 11.19.58 AM
Child miner in Burkina Faso – PBS NewsHour

In order to be of any use to humanity, a mobile phone app needs a mobile phone. A mobile phone needs coltan for its tantalum capacitors. The Democratic Republic of Congo holds 64% of the coltan reserves in the world and obtaining this coltan, along with other minerals, has destroyed the environment and social structure and cost the lives of many people in the eastern DRC. This mineral has fed an inestimable number of militias and produced child soldiers, child labour and human rights disasters including war.

A mobile phone uses gold as a conductor. Children in Burkina Faso mine for gold in hand dug mines, sometimes no more than two feet wide, which sometimes collapse and kill them. If your phone vibrates, you need tungsten and for that you need wolframite. In the DRC, children mining wolframite are “as young as twelve years old…under the watch of the 85th brigade, forced to spend up to 72 hours in narrow tunnels, some of which do not exceed 70cm in diameter.” A mobile phone needs cassiterite to produce the tin used for its solder. Erosion, deadly floods and pollution from mining the commons in Indonesia destroy food security and homes for many to profit a tiny minority.

Once all of these people have had their lives, environments and social structure destroyed for the raw materials, it’s time to build the mobile phone. Perhaps it will be built by Samsung which leaks hydrofluoric acid, lead and organic solvents on its employees and neighbours and refuses to disclose what chemicals they are exposing people to. Or perhaps it will be built by people working up to 17-18 hours a day with no days off for over 10 weeks to profit Apple.

If it was acknowledged that every app was a global collaborative project, who would give billions to Pierre Omidyar and Mark Zuckerberg for their contribution? Their billions are of necessity spent creating a tiered society to protect themselves. IT professionals who justify the classist society they uphold bill it as a meritocracy, as though the work of Bill Gates or Pierre Omidyar is of more merit than a child down a mine shaft in Burkina Faso. Those with the indulgence of time, peace, health, education and a nurturing environment not only get the easiest, most rewarding jobs, their contribution in these least challenging jobs provides the greatest compensation and the only recognition.

The silicon valley culture does not stop at silicon valley. Silicon Valley has a global culture. Google works to extend the life expectancy of its employees while Samsung and Apple poison theirs and mining militias murder theirs. On the job health benefits include unlimited free healthy food and exercise at Google and dismissal and refusal of medical coverage after you contract leukemia from exposure to their toxic radiation at Samsung and Apple. Contracts specify ease of immigration to the world’s richest countries for software engineers and closed borders, death, torture and imprisonment to refugees of those countries destroyed by the violence and pollution of the resource mining. Software engineers have perks including global travel and domestic servants, Apple factory employees who kill themselves are denied life insurance for their families. Those destined to be software engineers have elite universities, mentoring programs and angel investors, those destined to mine the resources are frequently used up and already dead by the same age.

Every software app is a collaborative product. It includes the coders, the instructors, the hardware and software manufacturers, those that mine the resources and those that work in the factories. It includes the banks and venture capitalists who funnel all of the world’s money into the newest crop of boy billionaires from the same demographics as the old, the lawyers who justify the unjustifiable, the media who divert your gaze to the chosen ones and the governments who employ vast militaries to maintain what they call a natural order. It includes borders, racism, nationalism, relentless propaganda and lies. It includes complicity from the entire world.

The IT industry is a dictatorship. The billionaires at the top crush the peasants at the bottom, starve them, lock them into bordered ghettos and deny them the most basic human rights. They use their own technology to spy on them and force them into mines to produce the military instruments of their own deaths. The dictators feign benevolence in the form of Pierre Omidyar’s disastrous microloans to the world’s most impoverished and Bill Gates’s initiatives to eliminate food sovereignty in Africa. When it comes to those below them in the food chain, these billionaires celebrated for their love of autonomy and creative freedom become paternalistic tyrants.

Any attempt at revolution is co-opted by the chokehold this fraternity has on all forms of media and public platforms. The world is inundated with propaganda marketing ‘revolution’ as an all-caucasian boy band traveling the world selling their own technology as world changing. The only change brought by this group is the demographic at the top is ever more caucasian and male and their work has knowingly built the global panopticon needed to catalogue and manage an entire world population as corporate product.

The IT industry is a model for all knowledge based industries. With the globalization of the new empire there will be more and more closed global epistemic communities of elite knowledge and elite privilege, similar to academia but far larger and with a much greater divide from those below them. China’s new supercollider complex may very well be an early example. These epistemic communities will become a new form of nation, a new stratification not based on simply class or ethnicity but adhering to both as well. Rights once conferred by citizenship, based on the communal ownership of resources and participation in a trade economy, will no longer be available as states no longer own their own resources.

The stateless ponzi schemes of wealth and power are the building blocks which will uphold the coming global feudal structure.

The medium is the message

In a world where some lives are valued exponentially more than others, it is those most visible who are valued the most highly. More than any words, what matters in the media is who the media chooses to show. The news is their own celebrity, journalists win oscars, oscar winners do journalism, and both are chosen as the experts giving political advice over the heads of those affected. Their news is themselves and their solutions are also themselves in a world where Mia Farrow is playing Obama and Obama is playing Obama too.

No one is asking why is Obama speaking? Why is he in charge? Why does he matter at all? Exceptional lives are a necessary principle for the corporate future and maintaining the gates between the passive public and the people dying has never been more essential. If there were no sparkly personalities for the people to look at they would have to think about events which may even lead to them considering the ideas which led to the events. Without Bad Guys the public may instead judge bad actions which might lead to them judging all terrorism the same and finding no evil which is lesser.

The corporate media feeds an endless stream of binary news, Good Guys and Bad Guys, guilty and innocent, justifying action – reaction responses always on the same pendulum of violence. Beheadings by the centralized mafia are promoted as ‘the lesser evil’ as compared to beheadings by the decentralized mafia. Killing violence is as effective as cutting a hole out of a blanket but no alternatives to men with guns are ever shown. Destroying lives is the important business of government, saving lives is left to charity and obscurity.

People around the world no longer have elders and communities and are conditioned to await the arrival of a Great Man. It is no longer enough to have figureheads of states only, a stateless world requires roving Goodwill Ambassadors, playing with global problems like Marie Antoinette played in her peasant village. Personal experience is reduced to the voices of journalists or Thought Leaders and The Risks They Face. Wikipedia can be read for weeks without ever encountering a reference that is not to a caucasian man. Freedom of speech for all is forgotten in favour of freedom of the corporate press, co-opted messages are a celebrity prop and revolution is reduced to a seat on a panel.

Charity funding is directed to foundations grooming the new Thought-Leaders-in-training from all the right demographics. People donate to send amateur journalists from acceptable demographics to tell the story of those perfectly able to tell it themselves, ensuring no context, history and meaning in the result. Those with power act as gatekeepers instead of bridges, owning the stories of others instead of amplifying them. NGOs preserve their elite club status in their requirements for job applicants, effectively eliminating anyone who may be from the groups represented by demanding PhDs and elite experience. The Thought Leaders act as the new traveling evangelicals, preaching soundbite morality and selfie-solutions over considered participation and interaction.


Welcome to the new Children’s Crusade

Corporate propaganda since colonization in all parts of the world has depicted care and connectedness to the environment as ‘aboriginal’ sentiments, implying bizarrely that some inhabitants of earth are not aboriginal and even more bizarrely that care for one’s own home and life essentials is cultural. This served the dual purpose of both ghettoizing environmental concerns as minority issues and inhibiting those labeled non-aboriginal from speaking about concerns that were decreed the cultural property of others. This common ghettoization and marginalization tactic was also used with women, with destruction of families and homes first depicted as ‘feminist’ issues and then feminism redirected to uphold a corporate ideal instead.

The corporate media and politicians has for years directed all eyes to a steady feed of men with guns as both the problems and the solutions. Anyone not killing people, if shown at all, was presented as a prop, the ‘women and children’ that the Bad Guys were killing and the Good Guys would protect. The relentless messaging presented the trade economy mafia as the only reality and the only possible reality, supporting militaries as the only Good Guys over the obvious Good Guys in refugee camps and those caring for them. A public statement against men with guns killing people is always met with the response that the speaker must support other men with guns killing people, the only recognized alternative. Anything outside the debate on who should be killing whom is marginalized as a ‘minority issue’, not something that serious security analysts discuss. War is supplied freely by governments, the people are left to pay for the care of its victims.

Directing the public gaze to a selected minority effectively dictates the perception of reality and possible solutions. A blazing celebrity spotlight keeps those in the shadows from being seen and international celebrities prevent local voices from being heard. The celebrity stage also depicts international platforms as being more important than local ones. Activists leave their homes to be heard by US committees or talk circuit panels instead of staying and letting others build transparent bridges between local groups and curious outsiders. To appear on international panels you must be acceptable to those at the top of the celebrity ponzi scheme and their corporate owners so a homogenous message is ensured.

Those at the top of the celebrity ponzi scheme have no time for anything other than their own celebrity. If they are on a talk panel circuit they are not working on the ground, even if they once did. If they had an innovative or radical idea it would only have a tiny audience. They can only be at the peak of celebrity popularity if they are saying nothing complex or challenging to the audience’s existing world view. Popularity is not only not the same as influence, they are mutually exclusive. Popularity is only attained by riding ideas already at peak acceptance. At the very best, the celebrity ponzi schemes are a distraction, siphoning both money and public attention that should be focused elsewhere if we are to attain self-governance. At worst, they are a tool of the new system of global governance, dramatically influencing policy and global reactions with opinions based on no knowledge and easily manipulated by corporate messaging. In either case they are louder and more powerful than expertise or local voices and usurp the authority of both.

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Your worst enemy is not the person in opposition to you. It is the person occupying the spot you would be fighting from and doing nothing.

The new nations and city states

What we are seeing is the logical, predictable, natural progression of the ponzi scheme of power that has been building since the world decided to allow itself to be run by trade.

The Islamic State is a caricature of governments around the world and shows well just how little difference there is between decentralized mafia beheading people and the Saudi centralized mafia beheading people, or for that matter, the US global mafia murdering people accused of no crime along with everyone standing near them. If the people have no say in the law and no choice in its policing, the street executions by police in Nigeria and the US or the mass trials in Egypt, China, and the US look no different from those performed by groups the old states call terrorists. As cyber-currency and social media showed the true nature of the algorithms behind wealth and celebrity with the controls removed, the stateless militias currently terrorizing the world show the principles of our trade economy governance in its purest form. At every level, the resource mafia follows the same principles and from Bitcoin to Twitter to the Islamic State we see how rapidly these principles when decentralized will recreate oligarchy. The ponzi schemes of power, celebrity and wealth resulting from every egalitarian structure are accelerated as the regulating structures are dismantled and the underlying principles remain.

Entrance to the new elite will no longer be granted by state citizenship alone. The so-called nation states will be replaced by real nations aligned by wealth, celebrity and power. Those privileged will be the officially sanctioned epistemic communities and those Great Men speaking for the masses, the NGOs, journalists, Thought Leaders, politicians and everyone else who can use the effort or need of others for their own self aggrandizement.

This new borderless elite are now multinationals in themselves and enjoy multinational privileges while the ever-growing stateless masses of refugees have lost even the rights of being the property of a state. The new castle walls and state borders are purely economic. Like the aristocracy of old, the elite will once again be confined to cities and neighbourhoods, protected by their ability to afford militia guards, to inflate housing prices and to be ruthless with the homeless. China already has economic city states which leave the rural poor in a bleak world of not just poverty but also no marriage partners and no parents, where they are trapped not only economically but by refusal of documentation and permission to leave. The population of the Philippines has acted for years as domestic servants to states they are not permitted to have citizenship or rights in. Cities and neighbourhoods like Vancouver, Hong Kong and silicon valley have established economic borders as do gated communities everywhere. The new elite fantasize about seasteading and other solutions to isolate themselves from the masses as the old elite still occupy exclusive retreats such as Mustique.

Anyone without citizenship in these privileged nations will be in the new ‘third world’, locked out by a middle class of militias. A largely labour free economy and population explosion has made Nietzche’s ‘superfluous ones’ truly superfluous. The collapse of states and their economies have left large populations in a stateless wilderness where survival is the overwhelming priority and they are stripped of all commons property and dependent on charity. Those outside the privileged nations are considered enemy nations and as such, espionage, competition and war is considered justified against them and charity towards them is voluntary.

We already live in a world where children scrape minerals from dirt and carry back breaking loads under the eyes of men with guns, children and babies huddle starving in camps with no sewage or water, the oceans are filled with the outcast floating endlessly and pushed from shore whenever they attempt to land and a global elite deeply do not care, protected as they are from the superfluous ones by a military shooting other people’s children for money to feed their own. The new elite is sold as a meritocracy. An unapologetic eugenics program will decide who is most worthy to survive the coming disasters but in reality it will not be based on contribution or value to humanity.

For those who wished to turn back time to a decentralized libertarian or peer economy, this is the world you hoped for. This is what those principles will result in every single time, as we have now spent thousands of years proving beyond any shadow of doubt. This is why every revolution has just continued the progression down the same path.

This is the trade economy.

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Moroccans scale the border into Melilla, Spain

A phoenix is possible

The collapse of states is healthy and necessary as is the establishment of stateless epistemic communities. From this collapse it will be possible to build a new structure. If corporations and global empire prevails, this new structure will contain both stateless and governmental ponzi schemes of wealth, celebrity and power which are privileged and multinational and a huge unprivileged caste at the bottom of every state which will have no rights to commons property or social support and for whom survival will be a severe struggle. Between the two will be placed a military caste who will be coerced to serve by access to the basics for life.

Every oligarchy is built with the principles of a hierarchical ponzi scheme. The principles of hierarchy are counter-intuitively found in the slogan Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, which was used to erase Autonomy, Diversity, Society. To create a world without oligarchy we need to go back to a time before trade economy instilled rule by mafia and the ponzi schemes of power, celebrity and wealth.

The coming nations of epistemic communities need to be both permeable and transparent and the power of acceptance or rejection must always be with the user group, not the epistemic community. Epistemic communities must never govern. Their knowledge must be transmitted to the entire interested user group through knowledge bridges and feedback and acceptance or rejection must be transmitted back in an interactive loop.

Great Men must have their authority removed whenever they appear. Knowledge to aid in decision making must emanate by transparent knowledge bridges from either epistemic communities or local governance, not from celebrities and gatekeepers. To dismantle oligarchy, stop creating oligarchs.

It is impossible to have a trade economy without rule by mafia. To reinstate societies, the economy must be built on social approval combined with inalienable individual rights, voluntary association and clear social contracts. Autonomy means governance by the entire user group, including management of the resources of the user group. Ownership and control outside of or not including all of the entire user group is enemy occupation and theft. Every life must be accepted as having equivalent merit and equality must not be permitted to trample equivalence.

All ponzi schemes are upheld by a centripetal force caused by those orbiting the circles of power, celebrity and wealth and trying to get in. When the ponzi scheme reaches its point of maximum growth, the force disperses and the ponzi scheme collapses. Be ready with something better.

Related:

Binding Chaos
Autonomy, Diversity, Society
Releasing Chaos