Why we're losing - and how to start winning
The View from Green Island
GI Central - my 'net home' for the last few years, and the foreseeable future, this seems where it's going to be - lots of venting, lots of good writing, lots of 'out-of-the-box' ideas you aren't EVER going to hear on the CBC
The Democratic Revolution Handbook - Home
And a book for younger readers too, Dave's an eclectic sort of person - Aquila
These and Dave's other books can be found at
Dave's Smashwords EPUBS page
- and for the curious, if anyone cares, a few words on
From Hastings to Green Island
- the (very) short form story of Dave's own journey..
Knowledge is like a candle. When you light your candle from mine, my light is not diminished. It is enhanced and a larger room is enlightened as a consequence. - Thomas Jefferson
The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed - Steven Biko
Part I Chapter 1:
Sheeps and wolvesA bit of necessary context to inform the inquiry
(AKA "Things they don't tell you in school" (actually, I guess, 'Things they don't tell you in school Part I' - the whole book could be subbed 'Things they don't tell you in school or anywhere else, ever', I guess ...))
In the biggest picture, where the deep meaning can be recognized, where the many become one, where we see what the cat is really doing, where the talk is done and the walk begins, 'we the people' are losing the modern 'game of thrones', our ages-old struggle to create a democratic government of, by and for 'we the people' against those who wish to maintain their ages-old government of, by and for the elite, the powerful, the kings and emperors, the robber barons, those who have always ruled, and intend to continue always ruling.
Losing in the same way the once great forests are losing to the chain saws, the once uncountable ocean biomass is being cleaned out by the great trawler machines and the poisons we have been dumping as if the oceans were a bottomless garbage dump, losing the same way the atmosphere is being poisoned by the endless flow of industrial chemicals, in the same way so many of us are losing our minds to the programming of those who would make us slaves to their newage newmind plantations. We are losing in the same way lower order life forms inevitably lose to being exploited or destroyed at the whim of higher order life forms.
There are a number of lesser contained reasons for this, but again the 'big picture' reason boils down to this fact: 'we the people', even after centuries of struggle against oppressing forces, are rank amateurs in the power game that has gone on for millennia in our world, unsuited for such a great contest by our very lack of desire for power over others, challenging, or more correctly trying to defend ourselves against, a gang of predators who are, and who have always been, master gamesmen in the game of power, which they fervently desire, which is, indeed, the primary goal of their being. These predators are manipulating us as they wish, as they always have, not so different from a farmer herding around his animals as he wishes, in no way facing any serious inconvenience from occasional minor temper tantrums or short-lived outbreaks of resistance from his herds, taking such things completely in his stride, bribing them into the barn with a bit of fresh grain if that is the easiest solution, or bringing out the cattle prod if they have some unhappiness a bit of grain won't alleviate. The game, insofar as we can thusly characterize something so life-and-death serious, itself is millennia old, going back to the earliest days of human society, and as far back in biological history as you wish to observe and consider, with some animals evolving as the top-level predators in their communities, and others just as naturally accepting their role as the prey animals. We humans, of course, are a somewhat different animal, with our thinking brain and intelligence orders of magnitude beyond the much more primitive instinct-driven animals of the forests and plains and oceans and skies, but we still have the innate predator-prey instincts we evolved with underlying our individual characters, with some small number of us, generally matching the proportions in the natural world, dominated by the 'predator dominate, kill and eat' instinct, and most of us by the less violent 'gather together collectively' herbivore/omnivore instinct.
Letting our discussion be informed by this basic biology that drives everything in nature, there are three things that follow, in terms of our human existence on this planet, related to these basic instincts and biological imperatives that are necessary to recognize, and understand, from the very beginning if we are to understand our very much removed from the 'real' natural world of lions and wildebeests or wolves and sheep, but very much related, modern problem of what seems to be happening to our 'democracy' that our parents and grandparents fought for for generations, which we are on the verge of losing today.
First - even though we all look the same as 'humans', as highly evolved omnivores, there are still two very distinct instinctive evolutionary strains running through our species, with a small percent of us dominated by 'predator' instincts, and most of us dominated by 'herd' genes - it's a full 'bell curve' type pattern of course, as genetic things often are, with most people falling somewhere between the poles, but these are the extremes we need to understand, paralleling nature where the few predators inhabit the top of the 'food chain', and the much larger populations of more cooperative herd animals living at the lower levels (bell curve pattern, but of course a 'pyramidal' type distribution, with the top level predators in much lower numbers than the orders of prey below them - a 'balanced natural habitat' requires great herds of prey to maintain a small number of top-level predators hunting them, and likewise in human societies, it takes a lot of slaves to create the wealth that builds and maintains the plantation for the top-level exploiter).
This 'natural dichotomy' has less to do with what we eat, as humans of all kinds are of course basically omnivorous, but it has a great deal to do with the deep inborn ways we deal with our fellow humans, most especially the 'power relations', with most of us instinctively looking to live peacefully together sharing the natural bounty, to cooperate and get along with one another and work together to survive and progress, with the attendant inborn tendencies to honesty and peaceful cooperation as we pursue our lives, but a few of us instinctively driven to be 'lone wolves' or pack predators, to dominate our fellow creatures by whatever means are necessary or available rather than work together with them, and the associated tendencies of deception and violence in the pursuit of their basic goals. Cooperative herd animals instinctively 'play by rules', (a) not having the natural, finely-honed deceptiveness required by a successful predator 'stalking' its prey, and (b) as intelligent, peaceful humans, understanding that treating others fairly and honestly is the best way to ensure we ourselves are treated fairly and honestly - the survival of the herd ensures our own survival. But the predator recognizes no rules whatsoever beyond kill and eat as an individual entity or fail to kill and die as the same individual entity - thus his primary instinct tells him he must kill, by any means possible, to survive and prosper and, as in the wild, the primary weapons of the human predators roaming and hunting in our midst are violence and stealth. Notions of 'honesty' or 'fair play' and such things are simply not ideas they have any use for themselves, although, of course, clever as they are in the human incarnation, as part of their stealth, their deception, they do find it useful to encourage such ideas in those they rule, their prey - anyone playing any game by the rules, and trusting their opponent to do the same while that opponent has no intention to play by any 'rules', can only ever have one outcome (yes, human predators will make 'pacts' together when they see some short term advantage, but they will break the pact and stick a knife in their former ally's back the second they see an advantage in doing so). It will ever be the predator who brings the gun to the knifefight, believing what a clever chap he is for doing so, while the 'prey' animal who broke the rules in such a way would be shunned by his or her fellow herd members for doing so - lies in the herd endanger us all, thus honestly is one of the strongest virtues in the herd, whilst having no meaning at all to the predator, beyond its use in deceiving a prey. It's not who wins, but how you play the game, is **not** a predator saying - just the reverse - who wins is, in the end, the only thing that counts. When you get the billion dollars - you can buy what you have to, to send the law agencies looking somewhere else.
Second, we need to recognize the human brain and its capacity for thought and learning, not only in one lifetime but over generations and centuries, in the context of this basic predator-prey division - most of us who would consider ourselves 'progressive' are well aware of, and suitably proud of, our accomplishments as a species over the last few thousand years, and also take deserved pride in our own individual learning. But what we often forget, not entirely accidentally, is that when you put this great learning-over-time-and-generations ability into a predator, or a 'class' of such predator-humans, they also learn, over time, not only new ways of dominating by violence, but also by ever improving ways of deceit, and of managing their 'herd' of 'serf-animals', and we must start to understand that we are playing this power game as essentially reluctant amateurs against **MASTER** gamesplayers who have been controlling everything for centuries, and refining and improving their control every day, every year, every century, and learning every generation how to control 'their' herds better.
We need to understand clearly that, as in nature, the predator sees two kinds of fellow humans in their world - fellow predators at a more or less equal level, and prey. Other predators are 'serious' business to be dealt with carefully as the various predator gangs jockey for power, but to the predator, to all of the predators, the various herds are just things to be managed, presenting no danger to their rule. In our human society, the predators play the highest level games among themselves, the games for dominance of the top-level human societies and communities - basically it's just upper level gang warfare among predators for control of their local fiefdom. We 'herd-instinct humans' are nothing more than prey to all of them as they fight among themselves to control us, and metaphorically farm us as their slaves etc. There are no 'rules' in this great game of human predators, as we make and understand 'herd rules' among ourselves for the benefit of all of us - when predators fight, as in the microcosm of the wolf pack, at the end of the day there is a victor and one or many losers who may or may not be allowed to live or stay in the pack/community, if they survived the battles. The predator wins or loses, that is the only rule. Tooth and claw violence was the original weapon of the jungle, and of humans in more primitive settings, but over the centuries various non-violent strategies came into play because, properly applied, the cunning warrior who has some capability of using his superior brain to plot stratagems to deceive their foe would gain an advantage over the warrior gang who relied on simple superiority of arms - and over the centuries of learning and refining, whoever had the best combination of violence and deception at any given struggle won the day, and right to control the human-herd-serfs, keeping them working and creating wealth which they claimed for their own. And of course, when the predator gangs then use their capacity for planning campaigns to defeat other predators to formulate ways to control the peaceful and generally passive herd, it is the same level of 'competition' as the human farmer planning ways to keep the more powerful beasts on his farm under his command.
When we look back through our history trying to understand what happened, we need to start looking through a new kind of filter, and understand that when the human predator-warlord seems to accede to demands for 'democracy' and 'the rule of law', and establish rules, or 'laws' that direct us to 'fight fairly', as we 'herd' animals are inclined to do among ourselves anyway, that is part of the deceitful strategy they use to control us, a factor of the great advantage the predators naturally have over the prey - they of course have no understanding of 'fighting fairly' when the only rules recognized by predators are 'kill or don't eat' when dealing with prey, and 'win and prosper or lose and be banished' when competing with other predators. And of course, a great advantage for them, the predator only needs to win against the prey once, while for the prey it is simply an endless life of watching for predators, and the first time you miss one coming is the last time. The situation vis a vis 'feudalism vs democracy' is a bit more nuanced, as of course they are not actually killing and eating us, but the idea is the same - the predator only needs one small opening to establish their dominance, and once it is established it is very hard to oppose them - we prey turn our backs for a second, and that's the end of the story, as the second they are in power they begin constructing as many things around us as they can to keep us in their power - and of course after several centuries of establishing their control of the 'democracies' we have all been fooled into believing we live in, the constructs around us to keep us 'in the box' are very deep and multi-faceted, layer upon layer upon layer of things to keep us completely unaware of the way our country really runs, and completely under their control as we challenge or fight any number of endless distractions or are led down false paths.
And in the human situation, once we're on the ground with the foot and sword on our necks, literally or figuratively, they are far too smart as predators to let us back on our feet to challenge them. And they established that dominance a long, long time ago, and have maintained it, and increased it, every year since, until now, they are able to tell us the chains are symbols of freedom, and few even think to question it. And so it has been forever - and if we are going to challenge these human predators, ruthless and unbelievably strong in the modern world and master gamesplayers in the human game of thrones as they are, we need to understand their 'rules' - not play by their rules, as the peace-inclined, reluctant-to-kill herd folks will never defeat the violence-based, killing-as-second-nature predators in a violence contest, but we must understand the rules, or lack thereof, they follow, and how they manipulate us through our own peaceful and honest ways, so we simply put a stop to their manipulation through lies and deception - we can defeat them by using our brains and our superior numbers and working together, if we understand what is happening around us.
They well understand this dynamic, which is why they are winning.
We do not - and we continue losing.
And the Third and final crucial point that we need to get firmly on the table, in the front conscious parts of our brains, with a big bright light shining all over it is - we need to recognise clearly that these predators are Enemy, as any wouldbe-prey recognizes a predator as Enemy in the wild. Something that wants to kill and eat you, or enslave you, is nothing but an enemy to you, and you are some kind of naive, ready-to-be-eaten fool if you think otherwise, a soon to be dead or dominated fool. These human predators see we 'cooperative inclined humans' as prey, not as 'fellow herd members', and treat us as a farmer treats his animals, or a wolf a deer herd - something to kill and eat, or in a predator-human sense something to exploit and manipulate, to use for profit as a farmer uses a cow or sheep or horse, not someone to consult about the running of the farm, the big farm we call 'our' community, or society.
As long as we allow these predators to walk freely among us as one of us, as long as we welcome these predator-humans into our own community, and grant these wolves in sheep's clothing the same rights and legal protections and assumptions of good will and suchlike we grant one another - they will simply see us as fools and tools, and use these things, our naivete and trust and gullibility and peaceful inclinations, as weapons to be used against us - as we have seen over the centuries, very successfully. It is good and right that we try to create decent societies for our own kind - but when we allow the predator - the classical wolf in sheep's clothing - to smile his crocodile smile and pretend to be one of us, and we let him in the door, and allow him to use and abuse these things, as Brutus was allowed to not only sit at the table of Caesar but to offer him words of council which Caesar heeded while Brutus was preparing the knife, these rules we create for ourselves, and claim the things we have created as their own - they just take over, as they have done. We do not get the enemy out the door by saying 'please go now', which would be sufficient for one of our own kind, the enemy has no intention of going, and will only respond to the kind of violence they use to subdue us.
With those essential understandings beginning the informing of our exploration, let's carry on and take a short look at some other things in our current and (relatively) recent history that the predator-dominated education system and media don't teach us anything about, or teach us some very incomplete and/or false, very self-serving, things. Things that will let us understand more clearly why we are losing the almost-democracy our ancestors managed to create by recognizing their predator enemies much more clearly than we seem to today, and thus informed, ready to start some serious measures to degrade their power while moving towards their complete defeat and banishment from our halls of democratic government
We don't really have a choice at this time in our history, as those who would be Kings Forever have decided this is the time to force the game, to 'roll the dice' as the great warrior must do at some time when he thinks he has a winning situation, and we are very much now at a crossroads. And if we let Those Who Would Be Our Kings force us down their chosen road, we become the new 21st century peasant class, with an oligarchy above us so powerful the chances of our ever getting out of their control are, as they say, slim and none. If we reject their new serfdom road, and choose to make our own way - if we are careful, and smart, the untrod road could lead, if we step carefully, to the first full Democracy in the history of our species.
It's worth fighting for, I think. Red pill or blue, the time to choose is upon us.
As various observers of our history have noted - the tragedy of our times is not that a few bad people are doing bad things, it's that so many good people sit back and do nothing.
They wouldn't be talking about you, I do hope.
or back to Democratic Revolution Handbook - Home