Ending the Propagandocracy by Returning to Reason, Ethics and Truth

originally posted on: July 4, 2010
What we believe in the western world to be our democracy has turned into something wholly different, since the point where we turned away from the path of reason, ethics and truth.
Rather than a democracy, the system we now have in the western world might be called a “propagandocracy”.

It is through the power of deceptive manipulation that we are ruled by an arrogant elitist plutocracy, one that has lost an understanding of basic ethics, a respect for honesty and truth, and a sense of compassion. And although this plutocratic ruling class sees itself as the intellectual elite, it has, in reality, also lost most of its capacity for reason.

But this loss of reasoning capacity doesn´t only afflict western society´s elite; it has spread down through all levels of western society.

Reason, true reason, in our relationship to others means to consider the other person (or the other group of people, the other nation, the other religion) which we encounter in life as an equal partner in these encounters, and to consider the other´s interests to be as valid as our own.
In the long run, this is the only way to live in peace with others. Democracy can´t thrive without this kind of reason.

In our time, however, we have been conditioned to seek short-time advantages for ourselves, rather than reasonable long-term solutions for a peaceful and reasonable society.

We seek out the cheapest deals when we shop, even if this means that those people in the developing world who have made the things we are buying are practically working under slave-labor conditions.

And just as unreasonably, we tend to prefer imported food or food made by agribusiness corporations for its cheap prices, but by doing so, we bankrupt our country´s own family farmers. And while risking our health in that deal, we ultimately also destroy our society´s food security.

We are all in some way accomplices in this unethical state of affairs. We have all lost the sense of ethics, which ultimately is also a loss of the sense of natural reason.
If we want to create an actual democratic society, we need to bring ethical principles back into our lives.

But even more so than ordinary citizens, most politicians have lost their sense of ethics when it comes to policy making.

The same is true for economists, sociologists and scientists of many stripes.
In our society human life is counted in Dollars or Euros. When environmental hazards cause health damage to people living in neighborhood of corporate production facility, government employed economists calculate how much this increases health costs or the costs of workers being away from their job. And the media tells us the numbers. The suffering this needless destruction of their health causes to the afflicted people has become next to irrelevant in the discussion.

The corporation then calculates if it is more costly to pay legal fees or preventing the hazards by cleaner production methods. In developing countries, it´s always cheaper to just bribe some government officials than cleaning up the environmental mess.
The same calculations are done in connection to health or accident hazards for the workers.

Sociologists teach politicians and media elites how public opinion on certain issues can be formed or public criticism can be contained.

Psychologists investigate ever new ways of manipulating the individual via advertising, mind-control techniques, or even via psychological and physical forms of torture.

Instead of talking about cooperative means to solve problems to the mutual benefit of everyone concerned, politicians talk about the one-sided interests of powerful groups or nations which can be pursued by any means, including violence.
Just recently, German President Köhler, in regard to Germany´s involvement in the Afghanistan war, said that as a country which depends on free trade to protect its industrial production and jobs, Germany must also be ready to defend its trade-lines by military means.
In other words, Germans are helping to kill Afghani people so Germany can keep its positive trade balance?
But while President Köhler was only expressing the ideas of large segments of the German political and economic elite, having his ethical blindness so publicly revealed was a bit too much for the German people, and so he had to resign.

But we have to realize that life without ethics is basically self-defeating. Ethical principles create solidarity between all members of society, the weaker and the stronger among them. They are the basis for laws which further peaceful dealings between individuals and nations. And ethical principles protect the weak from arbitrary violence and oppression by the strong. But those principles don´t serve only to protect the weak; in a society without ethics, even the strong will eventually lose. They will lose the protection those ethics give them from those who challenge their leadership. If society lives by what some call “the law of the jungle,” nobody will feel safe enough to relax his guard. This will result in suspicion and fear of everyone against everyone else to the point of full-blown paranoia.
In the long run, without ethics we would all go crazy. Society could no longer function.

How can we define ethics in political terms?

We might start with the first article of the German constitution:

“The dignity of man must never be violated; respecting and protecting this human dignity must be the highest task of all government authority.”

This article actually precedes all others in the German constitution, including the second one, which confirms the respect for all human life.

It was written as a direct result of the lessons learned from the disaster of the Nazi era. The Nazis had no respect for human life and even less for human dignity. Human beings of German ethnicity were categorized as either leaders who rule and control or as masses who are ruled and controlled for the purposes of the rulers.
Then there were the “Untermenschen” ( subhumans), the members of most non-Germanic ethnic groups.
During the war, those people were used like machine parts without regard to their humanity in order to further the “war-effort,” or they were experimented upon in lethal “medical research.”
And finally, there were the “unworthy lives” (handicapped people who were considered to be of no use at all and could therefore be “put to death”).
And anyone who protested or resisted the inhumane policies could be incarcerated, tortured, and executed.

The writers of the post-war German constitution realized that when respect for human dignity is lost, then respect for human life is lost shortly thereafter.

Respect for human dignity today, according to the International Human Rights Declaration, means an absolute ban on any form of torture, including non-touch torture via water-boarding, stress positions, noise, sleep-deprivation, heat, cold, hunger, and psychological torture through sexual abuse and enforced nudity.

Following respect for human dignity, the most important ethical principle we have to bring back into politics is honesty.

The truth isn´t always easy to find, since it is most often a very complicated set of facts, and each and every one of us can only have and understand a small portion of those facts. But untruth, lies, and deceptions can and must be uncovered. This is essential for humanity´s future.

There cannot be democracy without respect for truth.
Without respect for truth and the honesty that goes with it, there cannot be trust.
Without trust there cannot be peace.
If we want peace, we need to counter lies and deliberate untruths.
But since most people have been deceived by politicians and the media, political lies are often believed without scrutiny.

Falsehoods have become part of the mainline consensus. People have built their worldview and sometimes even their personal identity on false premises.
Even when lies and deceptions are uncovered by clear physical and otherwise undeniable evidence, it is not easy for most people to change their minds on issues they have believed in for such a long time.

I am aware of the psychological difficulties experienced by many people when they have to accept that the world is so very different from what they thought it was.
In some cases, challenging the mainline consensus even with the best of evidence is considered by many people as a provocation, an act of radicalism.
However, if World War III is being prepared at this very moment, backing down from truthful investigations for fear of treading on some people´s sensibilities is, in my opinion, no longer ethical; neither is it justifiable for fear of becoming ostracized or an outcast.

Truth sometimes hurts, but upholding lies in accordance with a media-created consensus as the unchallenged image of reality has become far more devastating and dangerous for all of us.

Truth is a powerful weapon, even if it is a non-violent one.
Truth makes many other weapons less usable or even powerless.

For instance, uncovering the truth about false-flag attacks and showing them for what they are (as the 9/11 truth-movement is doing), makes new false-flag attacks less likely: From now on, large segments of the population will suspect the hand of the government in every further “terrorist” attack . And the people who have those suspicions will inform their neighbors and friends about them.

From now on, the people who plan a false-flag attack on their own population or the populations of their allies will have to take into account that those attacks might badly backfire, and they might themselves come under wide-scale public scrutiny.
The majority of a nation’s population might no longer be ready to be manipulated into another war against the so-called enemy designated by their corrupt political or economic elites after such an attack. Instead, the citizens might turn against their would-be manipulators.

Truth empowers the people, the ordinary citizens of nations, to keep the machinations of their politicians in check–and that includes the politicians´ rich paymasters and the elite string-pullers.

When lies and deceptions are uncovered, and the truth is accepted by more and more people, society will change for the better. This change will take some time, possibly a long time, but it is inevitable.

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