Our Future Has Been Commandeered

FutureCommandeered

We should be living in the time of humanity’s greatest flower. But we’re not. Instead, we’re stuck in a condition of permanent war, rising xenophobia, endless fear, perpetual distraction, and suffocating conformity. Worse, we’re living inside of a surveillance state that is morphing into something truly, truly evil.

I’m here to tell you that nearly all of this is artificial. We have more than enough technology to be living among the stars, to fill every hungry mouth on the planet, and to meet nearly every human need.

We already know how to do all those things… and this fact is demonstrably true.

And yet we sit immersed in fear, confusion, privation, and even hate. And why? Mainly because the elites of our civilization have demanded that we sacrifice our wills to theirs, and because most of us have silently complied.

We have space-age knowledge, yet we remain firmly under the domination of bronze-age rulership. And since these rulers would be wiped away by the spread of space-age technologies, they have carefully contained them.

“Thou Mayest Not Go There”

As I write this, we are at the end of the year 2015. Back in 1968 – almost two generations ago – men traveled to the moon. The next year, they landed there. This was well before microwaves, cell phones, and the Internet. It was even before personal calculators. But right there, space travel was stopped in its tracks. In fact, it was first pulled back and then stopped. No human has left Earth’s gravity since 1972.

Have we more technology than we did in 1968 – 47 years ago – or have we less?

Obviously we have far more and far better, but space technology has been commandeered and space has been locked shut. Our future has simply been cut off. Does any reasonable person believe that it would be harder to go to space now than it was before Kevlar and fiber optics and computers that didn’t fill an entire room?

And let’s be honest about this: That future was eliminated by the lords of our world because it would ruin their game. Letting the cows out of the barn would severely undercut their interests.

Many of you should be reading my posts as you sail among the stars, or at least among planets, moons, and asteroid belts. We have the technology… and we’ve have had it since the late 1960s. That’s not even debatable.

Requiem for the Internet

Before the Internet, nearly all information was forced to move through well controlled conduits. Exceptions to that rule were mainly print newsletters. But then came the Internet, which allowed anyone to speak to everyone; it allowed information to move from individual to individual with no gatekeeper. That was a very large and very significant change.

To be honest about it, we got the Internet mainly because the elites screwed up. They could have bottled it up, but they simply failed. (They are not smarter than we are.) Sure, other people would have written an Internet-type of communications protocol soon enough, but that kind of slow rollout would have given the bosses time to limit the technology and keep some bottlenecks in place.

Now, after a couple of decades, the Internet has been substantially retaken by the elites. Already, nearly everything is being funneled into Google and Facebook, both of whom have whored themselves out to the rulers. (See this, for example.) It will probably be a matter of a few years until unapproved content starts to be pushed out. Matt Drudge, for example, claimed recently that a Supreme Court justice told him so personally.

Putting information back into controlled channels is massively in the interest of the rulers, and there is no one to oppose them. Their populations are among the most compliant in all of human history.

On top of that, the Internet is already a surveillance system, with the aforesaid Google and Facebook being major components of it. Since Snowden, that’s not debatable either.

Worse, that surveillance system (that is, the Internet) is quickly being turned into the most effective manipulation system in all of human history. In other words, the Internet has been more than commandeered; it has been weaponized and turned against its users.

I could go on, but I won’t: More facts won’t change more minds. Opposition to these truths is psychological, not intellectual.

It’s All About Will

We can have our future back, but only if we stop laying our minds and wills at the feet of rulers… rulers whom most of us acknowledge to be liars and thieves, by the way.

So long as we reflexively obey the people who stole our future, they will never, ever give it back. And why should they? That future isn’t in their interests, and so long as everyone obeys them, why should they change?

In the end, it comes down to the issue of will: Do we believe that we have a right to live and act according to our own minds? Or do we simply evade such considerations?

The usual unexamined slogans (“We have to work through our democratic institutions.”) merely lock us into place as will-less cogs in a hierarchy that hasn’t changed in any of our lifetimes. Truthfully, it’s just obscured slavery: “Pay attention to the flashing lights and keep doing as we say.”

There are answers to all our problems, and we are more than capable of reclaiming our future. But that will never happen if we keep surrendering our wills to the same elites who took it from us.

Paul Rosenberg
www.freemansperspective.com

Humanity Has Been Cut Off from Its Future

HumanityFuture

As much as we may complain about a multitude of things going wrong in the world, I suspect that many of us have a nagging impression—in a seldom-visited but persistent corner of our minds—that we’re living through desperately boring times.

These are very loud times, of course, but that doesn’t make them less boring.

An endless stream of bad news passes over our screens every day, accompanied by the best flashing images that the entertainment corps can come up with… yet somehow we know that it’s all an empty set of distractions.

And our instincts are right. Aside from the Internet, the past 20 years have been a snore, filled with sameness and conformity. They have featured no goals save bodily comfort and no aspirations save existence and status. Underlying it all has been a palette of manufactured fears that can only be salved by buying the right products or electing the right politicians. It’s been an age that rewarded neuters and punished vigorous individuals.

It all reminds me of a phrase from the late ‘50s:

In the US, you have to be a deviant or die of boredom.

Certainly a few people have had exciting and meaningful lives during these years, but they were definitely not people who followed mainstream paths; they were, in the proper sense of the word, deviants.

“Where There Is No Vision, the People Perish”

The phrase above comes from the Bible’s book of Proverbs, and it expresses an important truth: Humans, in order to live effectively and happily, need a goal—a vision—to pursue.

This is known as “teleological motivation” (or simply “teleology”), and it shows up in areas ranging from small to large. For example, when you decide to walk across a room, you don’t plan the contractions of your muscles, you just define the goal and activate your will; subconscious systems take over from there. From top to bottom, that’s just how we work.

So, with no goal, with no vision, we languish. And that’s been the problem for a long time now.

Are status and sex really all we have to grasp for? Are we no more than clever apes, chasing the same prizes they do, albeit more elegantly?

If you ask people “Where are we all going?,” you’ll get empty looks in response. And that’s because we have nowhere to go. There is no vision in our times, and the only quasi-visions we have are “elect Senator X” or “win the big game.” These are hardly appropriate goals for an actualized human life.

Not Long Ago, There Was a Vision

50 years ago, a billion of us were shocked to realize that we could go to the stars. After untold centuries of looking to the heavens, of wondering, dreaming, and mourning the impossibility, we saw that we could go out into the heavens. And for 10 years we took our first steps, successfully!

Those of us who are old enough remember the time well… because we had a goal to stretch toward: we were headed into space!

This wasn’t science fiction; it was real. I’ve been fortunate enough to have seen, with my own eyes, a manned spacecraft leave Earth, to have known people who worked at NASA, and even to have met one of the men who walked on the moon. And I can tell you that the missions to the moon were accomplished by normal human beings, just like you and me.

Heading into space was not fiction during my youth—it was a present fact… and it stood to change nearly everything.

That real and present goal is lost to us now. A few probes leave Earth’s gravity, but no more men and women.

What We’ve Lost

What we’ve lost can only be measured in the billions of unactivated lives.

After our first few steps out of our cribs, we were thrown back and surrounded with double-height rails. Since then, we’ve stagnated, and human culture has undergone a deep rot.

Now, we may watch sci-fi dramas about going to space, living in space, and even fighting in space, but we have given up all hope of going ourselves… even though it was done just one generation ago.

Humanity—having recently discovered the ability to expand without limit—wanders aimlessly, with no challenging goal, no elevated purpose, and no path of escape. Space travel was real just a few decades ago, and now it is lost to us.

And what became of the years since our vision was removed? There has been no striving, no searching, no becoming.

When we lost space, we lost our future.

Ever since then, we’ve had no brave goal to strive for, no magnificent vision to pursue. Several decades on, we remain in a kind of stasis, mollified with streaming vanities and base satisfactions.

Humanity’s future has been stolen and replaced with flashing pictures, cravings for “stuff,” and endless politics. It would be a joke, if it weren’t so pitiful.

Could space be replaced as a goal by something else? Sure, but it hasn’t been. And even if it were, we’d always know that the greatest adventure of all was once in our hands and is available no more. And unavailable is what it will stay, unless and until we decide to take it back, whether boss-men like it or not.

Paul Rosenberg
www.freemansperspective.com

This article was originally published by Casey Research.

The Death (and Rebirth) of the Middle Class

american middle classIt’s been well covered, but in this first article of the year, let’s take a look at the collapse of this most important segment of society.

The American middle class is fast disappearing, not because there is anything particularly wrong with the people involved – they are every bit as talented as their parents and grandparents were – but because the ruling class of the United States has pushed them into this position.

This middle class was once composed of proud and productive people… the kind who now exist primarily in advertisements for trucks. These people and their abilities remain, but Washington has taken power over nearly every choice they have and thinks of them only for the purposes of voting, fighting in wars, and creating more debt (aka buying stuff they don’t need).

These people are at a crossroads, facing fundamental choices about who they are and what they will be. The big threat in front of them is that by not stopping, thinking, and choosing (and it’s always easier to do nothing), they’ll stay on the path that has been grinding them into the dirt.

The Fall of the Middle Class in 60 Seconds

The first wave that undercut the American middle class hit roughly one hundred years ago, stripping away their surplus with income taxes, sales taxes, and debt-based money. This continues, transferring wealth from working people to governments and central bankers.

Older members of the American middle class will remember that small, self-employed farmers were once the backbone of the culture. These family businesses are now all but gone. Large farms remain, of course, but they have become, effectively, partners of the government and giant corporations. Gaps and exceptions remain, but the classic American farming family exists mainly on the fringes.

Self-employed people – shop-owners, mechanics, and so on – were another old American staple, and they are vanishing too, as you can see in this graph:

american middle class

The modern refuge for productive Americans was in manufacturing. But even manufacturing is dying in America. In 1977, there were nearly 20 million manufacturing jobs. Today – and with a much higher population – there are less than 12 million manufacturing jobs. (See graph below.)

 american middle class

Service jobs are fine, but there are not enough of them. And because of overwhelming demand, they pay poorly.

The Replacement Bubble

There has been one area in which young Americans could find both employment and lavish praise, and that has been as cogs in the military-industrial complex.

But regardless of the worship services that begin every sporting event, this cultural bubble is starting to deflate. The great surge of 9/11 has subsided and new wars have been difficult to sell. We have passed peak military-industrial complex, and the reflexive worship of intelligence agencies is passing as well. (Thank you again, Edward Snowden.)

In addition, traditional Americans are starting to wonder how their Christianity became a war religion. Red State Christianity is a kingdom divided against itself. War is simply not a Jesus thing, and state worship is definitely not a Jesus thing. So, when these churches encourage Bible reading, they sow the seeds of their own undoing. Young believers will soon be quoting scriptures against the “leaders” and walking away.

Thirdly, thousands of returning soldiers are discouraging their friends and neighbors from running off to “the glories of war.” People who have been in it know that war is horrifying and damaging. They are providing a lot of personal evidence of this, either by their words or by their (sadly common) debilitating injuries and suicides.

The number of jobs available in this replacement bubble are fading, and the glory of them is fading as well.

Go Corporate or Go Rogue

Consider the situation that faces the American middle class: The old ways are almost gone. The replacement that was sold to them kills or damages them and is vanishing anyway. The welfare life beckons, featuring free stuff and permanent dependence, but that’s not really their way – these people were raised on a healthy production ethic.

But what else stands in front of them? As the number of “good jobs” continues to decline, what realistic options do they have?

The approved choice is to go corporate: Take a menial job at Walmart, Starbucks, or McDonalds, take a side-job or two to survive, and slowly work your way up through management.

Or, if you have the appropriate university certificates (which come with crushing debt), you can be hired by a mega-corp – an oil company, or a tech company, or perhaps by government itself. We all know what happens in these places: Human character is warped, and the corporate script takes over all your life. You end up living of the corp, by the corp, and for the corp.

The one remaining choice is to go rogue. By that I mean to separate from the system, stop seeking its approval, and to live the life of an outsider.

Some Americans are already choosing the rogue life, of course. Every time they homeschool their children, grow their own food, trade via barter or Bitcoin, start 3D printing, or join an intentional community and accept people calling them weird, they are resigning from the mass culture and going rogue.

This is the oldest of American traditions, of course – the one chosen by every person who got on a boat between 1600 and 1900 and sailed off to a new continent. But this way of thinking hasn’t been popular in a long time. Conformity with the mass culture reigns, and separating from it requires considerable strength of character.

What Comes Next?

Over the next decade or so, traditional, middle class Americans will have to choose.

Many will go the corporate route and accept its slow self-punishment. Some will eventually drop out of this game and join the rogues, but others will live the corporation’s pre-scripted lives, then die.

Or, they can join the welfare class and explore new opportunities in degradation.

But if they can build their own courage and walk away from game, they will help to rebuild a confident civilization with a bright future.

My guess is that the once-productive American middle class is already starting to wake up. Each new disappointment drives more of them to go rogue and to start building a better future – their kind of future – not the one that is sold to them by Washington, New York, and Hollywood.

And that is the most encouraging thing of all.

Paul Rosenberg
FreemansPerspective.com

“I’m Glad I Won’t Live to See It”

dontseeIt’s a little scary how often I’ve been hearing one comment recently, of which the following is typical. It appeared on a financial web site about a month ago:

This is all going down to hell, and we are all to blame for it. I am glad that I am old. It started maybe 10-15 years ago. Before that, pensioners would tell me they would love to be 20 years younger. Now they all say they are glad that they aren’t any younger and will soon be off this rock.

I have a highly informed friend that reminds me of precisely the same thing every time I see him.

It’s Not Just Pessimism

A certain number of people are naturally pessimistic, and some of those people might be expected to make such statements. And I’m sure that some do. But that doesn’t look to me like what is happening here.

First of all, the one common characteristic that I see among people making these statements is that they are well informed.

Second, a good portion of them are basically optimistic people, quite willing to concede that what follows the bad passage may be very good. Their concern is simply that the bad period will last too long to live through, so they’d rather check out before going through it.

Personally, I don’t think the bad period will be quite that bad or last long, but only time will tell.

The Numbers

Right now, the United States government is in the hole something like 200 Trillion dollars. That number includes commitments that are owed in future years, but unless the system breaks, that’s really what they owe. Businesses have to account for their debts that way.

The total annual earnings of US residents is about 13 Trillion dollars. That’s only 6.5% of what is owed.

So, here’s what this debt load would look like when transferred to the scale of a typical American family:

  • You make $50 thousand per year.
  • You owe $769 thousand. (Plus interest, of course.)

Good luck paying that off, especially because that $769K is laid on top of your mortgage, auto loans, student loans, and credit card balances.

These are the kinds of numbers that the “I’m glad I won’t see it” guys understand. The debts simply cannot be paid, and what happens when the system breaks could be very, very ugly.

And, of course, the problems are not just financial. The entire ruling class of the world is out of control, massively arrogant and certain to flip out at some point.

People who say such things fit into two camps:

  1. Those who are older and who understand that the breakdown process will last longer than they will. They’ll be glad to die before it gets really bad.
  2. Those who expect to live long enough to make it through the collapse and into whatever comes after.

A huge number of folks are oblivious, of course, and fit into neither of these groups. They’re the ones who will get run over by all of this… just as they do every time.

It’s my opinion that the sharper and deeper the crash, the sooner it will be purged, and the sooner we move through the welfare riots, shortages, and martial law phase. If the system breaks, productive people will get a glorious fresh start. If the system merely declines, it will drag the entire culture in the direction of North Korea.

But, again, we shall see.

Jefferson Saw It Too

As it turns out, my hero Thomas Jefferson was an early “hope I don’t live to see it” guy. But what he was concerned about wasn’t a currency collapse but the destruction of self-government via a civil war. (There are always smart guys who see it coming, though they are seldom listened to.)

Here’s a passage from a letter Jefferson wrote to a friend in 1820, when he was quite old:

I regret that I am now to die in the belief, that the useless sacrifice of themselves by the generation of 1776, to acquire self-government and happiness to their country, is to be thrown away by the unwise and unworthy passions of their sons, and that my only consolation is to be, that I live not to weep over it.

And Jefferson was right: Four decades later millions of Americans were convinced to grab weapons, march in lines, and butcher each other.

The end result of the American Civil War, aside from wholesale death and mutilation, was that the states lost nearly all of their power to Washington, DC. After that point, any claim of self-government was purely promotional fluff. If the states – who had created the union – couldn’t maintain their rights, how would any individual stand against the Beast on the Potomac?

The Civil War (and Lincoln in particular) killed the America of Jefferson, Adams, Henry and Payne.

I’m glad the destruction didn’t happen during Jefferson’s lifetime. He didn’t deserve that pain… and neither do the better old folks of our time.

I am convinced, however, of this: The more that productive people understand what’s happening, the faster the fall and reset will be.

Start talking to your friends and neighbors. Add deeds to your words. Don’t stop.

Paul Rosenberg
FreemansPerspective.com

Don’t Fear The Collapse: The Future Will Be Better

future will be betterYes, we’ve all seen scary post-apocalyptic films like Mad Max, or TV shows like Jericho. A real collapse, however, will be quite different from such dramas. And beyond that, there’s a good chance the future will be better.

From where I now live, you could draw a 25 mile arc which would include competent people of almost any imaginable specialty: The guys who know how to build and repair refrigerators, machines of all types, cars and roads and houses and windows and computers and a thousand other things.

So, I’m not overly worried about the dollar going to zero – as long as these guys have two critical things:

  1. They must be able to communicate with each other.
  2. They must be left alone, with no one telling them “you can’t do that without our permission.”

If either one of these two things are missing, we’re screwed, but as long as we have them, we’ll be okay. Sure, there will be some bad days, a few tragedies, and a surfeit of terror from the fear factories (that is, the mainstream media), but in general, we productive people will be okay.

I knew men who ran a business through the Great Depression, in precisely my specialties (contracting and engineering). We discussed the difficulties they faced and how they coped with them. They worked through the depression end to end, and did some pretty impressive projects – with absolutely no credit available anywhere.

They paid for things creatively – in sections, with barter, and on trust – but they also got the job done, from the beginning of the depression to the end.

Our period of difficulty (which most of us presume will be coming somehow or another) will be different from the Great Depression, but so long as we retain the two items mentioned above – and I will tell you precisely how we can keep them below – we’ll get through it.

The Bad Stuff

Okay, so if we have a complete dollar collapse, what can we expect? Here are a few thoughts:

  • Fear. Scaring the populace will be the first and essential tool of the rulers. Government relies far more on legitimacy than on force, so the rulers will be very keen on using their number one tool to keep people clustering around them for safety. That’s a primary strategy for them.
  • Welfare riots. This is possible, and even probable in some places, presuming that government checks either stop, or no longer matter due to massive inflation. However, we all know which areas are likely to be hit and we can avoid them. (If you’re in one, do something about it now.) And, as horrifying as such a thing may be (and should be!), Americans, Canadians and a serious number of Europeans do have guns, and will eventually shoot rioters as they are beating down their neighbor’s door.
  • Supply chain disruptions. Since the big corporations are so tightly associated with governments, they will not likely adapt as quickly as small companies do. They may lock-up while waiting for instructions. This is why stores of key commodities (like food) and communication will be necessary.
  • War. This is the traditional distraction from disappointments and government failures. Syria seems to be the leading candidate at the moment, or perhaps North Korea or some other distant monster will fit the bill.
  • No credit. As scary as this seems to some people, the reality won’t be nearly as debilitating as imagined (except for the mega-corps); people will adapt and go back to a 19th century way of buying and selling. Adjustment will be required, but farmers will still need to sell their food, and they will find ways for productive people to pay them.
  • Lack of currency. Dollars will fail in this scenario (along with Euros, Pounds, etc.), but there will be not be a debilitating lack of currency, for two reasons:
    • Lots of people have silver and gold, which are always good.
    • We have Bitcoin, which is good currency world-wide.
  • Shuttered fire departments. The rulers won’t close too many police stations, since they want to retain their image as saviors and because they need people to fear them, but fire departments and other things may be let go. (The scarier things first.) But again, so long as we can communicate and adapt, we can just arrange for necessary services in different ways. Remember, most of us are blowing 20-30 hours per week on TV – we have WAY more free time than we think we do.

The Future Will Be Better if We Take Care of THESE TWO BIG RISKS

There are very simple solutions to our two crucial issues. But remember, simple isn’t always easy. Here are the solutions:

They must be able to communicate with each other.

This one is actually easy. The solution is mesh networks. (You can find a nice PDF primer here.) These are local networks, built with simple wifi devices. These, combined with a few longer links, can create a very nice communications network. You won’t be able to use it for videos, but it will work well for basic communications. (Though you really should keep a small electric generator and some gas.)

They must be left alone, with no one telling them “you can’t do that without our permission.”

The solution to this one is very simple: Do it anyway. Whatever you think of your local government, I very much doubt that you think they have a right to starve you – which is what failing to act in your own survival comes out to. If it’s moral, do it. Stop waiting for permission.

So, while the big collapse (assuming that it does come) will be terrifying to inveterate TV watchers, the reality will be far less apocalyptic than promised… assuming that we productive people act like producers.

And as producers, we have so much more choice than the others. Indeed, in one way, we could see the collapse as an opportunity to start fresh. The future will be better if we ultimately say so.

Paul Rosenberg
FreemansPerspective.com