The As-If Society

An insane United States has largely succeeded in cutting all human ties between people. Repeated mass shootings reveal this.

An incredulous media reports each new episode the same way: it obsessively repeats the body counts and reviews what the killer did that morning, as if this could explain the murders. Recently they discovered that mass killers are violent in other ways: they abuse their families or animals. Devoted to the current order, the media asks every question but the big one: Why do these atrocities keep happening?

The answer should be clear. US capitalism’s long march has been little more than a series of mass dehumanizations. The original inhabitants of the land were expropriated, enslaved, virtually exterminated. Africans were kidnapped, enslaved and debased. European immigrants were imported and repressed. This was all done to feed the ravenous appetite of capital for wealth and accumulation. These depradations continue.

The businessman’s crusade to annihilate the welfare state has successfully commodified all of life, so that nothing, and no one, has any value apart from how it enriches our masters. Their globalization is nothing more than a mad search for cheap labor to exploit. Their ecological destruction threatens all life on earth, wiping out whole cities at a time. This entire history is erased as if no crime has been committed – the media’s greatest triumph.

Keeping it superficial, the press steers all discussion of mass killings toward the pseudo-solution of gun control. The gun rights crowd has a good point: if guns kill people then spoons make you fat. But the US left, bereft of ideas, cannot engage this discussion. The left is enamored of statism and trusts the government, while the right chimerically pursues a pure capitalism, one without government intervention – as if it’s possible to end oppressive government without eliminating the capitalist system it created and maintains.

Only a new revolutionary movement, devoted to rethinking today’s complex, confusing reality and freed from empty sloganeering can begin to build a new society, based on reality.

Paul C. Bermanzohn is working on his book, called “Decoding the Matrix: A Preliminary History of the US Propaganda system.

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