Popular “culture” — if it can be indeed considered a true culture — in the United States is based on deception and, ultimately, death. What deception? Gosh, where to begin?
I suppose we could start with, say, the Super Bowl, possibly the nation’s primary “holy” day. Years ago in an episode of “The Simpsons,” a voice-over from a faux NFL Films clip said, “The road to the Super Bowl is long and pointless.” This is true in so many ways, except I’d go even further and say the Super Bowl itself is pointless. It’s pointless because, for as much time, effort, attention and care as people invest in watching/attending the games, as serious as they take the games, and as much as fans like to feel they’re “part of the team” (“We need a better offensive line,” or “We’ve got a great squad this year,” etc. etc.) the outcomes are not necessarily genuine, and in some cases, engineered and contrived.
Some people may believe this line of thinking as crazy, as if the NFL — a “non-profit” billion-dollar entrainment industry (for all but one year of its history) that leaves its participants physically/mentally destroyed and covers up domestic abuse — is incapable of engineering outcomes in order to promote certain story lines and overall generate maximum interest. “That just isn’t true,” ardent NFL fans say. When asked why it can’t be true, the answer is typically along the lines of “It just can’t be.”
To many, the NFL (and the NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, NASCAR, for that matter) is a “sacred cow” of sorts; it’s beyond reproach, always interesting, and by no means, never, ever “rigged” in any way, and to suggest as much is modern-day heresy. But one doesn’t need to look very hard to see that the concussion-inducing, lethargy-inspiring game isn’t entirely genuine. Take this most-recent Super Bowl, for instance: Broncos QB Peyton Manning — the “Sheriff,” if you will — won his record-tying 200th victory thanks to a Carolina Panthers team that pretty much folded. What a great way for the “Sheriff” to go out, right? What a great script!
Independent sports journalist — and a thinker after my own heart — Brian Tuohy writes of Manning:
Now you’d think given his career, this “injury” plagued season of his, the doubters who swore Brock Osweiler was the QB for Denver, his likley post-season retirement, and just the fulfillment of a dream that millions of American men hold–and doing so not just once, but a second time–that Manning would be an emotional mess. Instead, as soon as the game ended, he kissed Papa John and talked about drinking Budweiser–twice (which Bud claims they didn’t pay him for, but they didn’t bother to mention that Manning owns Bud distributorships in Colorado). He post-game reaction was about as thrilling as that of brother Eli’s on Sunday:
Perhaps it’s hard to get excited about a forgone conclusion.
This is really, truly just the tip of the iceberg. I challenge you to read Tuohy’s overview of the 2015 season, and if you’re still a believer in the “genuine” nature of the NFL, well, then, strong is your faith. The same goes for the other major sports as well.
While I’m not necessarily saying that all games in professional sports are rigged, I am saying that the outcomes aren’t solely determined by the players on the field, and that it’s proven there are other forces at work in these leagues. That said, to pour so much of one’s self into something that is as overblown and disingenuous as professional sports is pointless. But people can’t seem to get enough of sports, what with the incessant onslaught that is mainstream sports journalism, as well as fantasy leagues, video games, among others. For something that’s more or less contrived and pre-determined, caring about sports to the extent the that average American does is, as I said before, pointless.
The same goes for electoral politics, yet another “sacred cow” of American culture. It’s the bedrock of this country, and the culmination of thousands of years of human progress — supposedly. And yet, the software used to count the votes is highly opaque, and is even known to completely miscount ballots, casting all results in total doubt. Don’t believe me? Check out the first 10 and a half minutes of the scathing HBO documentary “Hacking Democracy,” as well as the related material. It’s enough to question really how reliable the final tallies are, if they’re reliable at all. Plus, with corporate lobbyists writing most of the legislation — wide-sweeping legislation like the Affordable Care Act, CISA, the TTIP, among others — that are so long and convoluted, yet get virtually no press coverage, how much really does one’s vote count?
Call me cynical, call me a naysayer, but I tend to agree with Scott Creighton’s view of voting:
One of the ways this country marginalizes or attempts to otherwise de-legitamize targeted regimes is by claiming that not many people showed up to vote, thus the people of the country are not engaged in the democracy because they feel it doesn’t matter anyway.
This is why they want you to vote. They want to show the world they still have us caught in a trance. They want to believe it themselves.
But they NEED you to go out there and go through the motions. They NEED you to vote. It’s like a Nielsen rating for them. The more who attend, the more they THINK they have you fooled. The day we have no one show up for an election is the day they know the gig is up.
A bunch of people are out there begging you to go vote. People who are supposed to be “alternative” or “dissidents” like Michael Moore. He’s out there BEGGING his “followers” (what an arrogant piece of crap) to drag people who don’t want to vote to the polls. There’s only one reason to do that, and that is to show support for the very system Moore has made billions of dollars pretending to oppose.
Nor can we forget George Carlin’s commentary on the subject:
Though the Presidential Election may dominate the news cycle and the public discourse — with the debates, gaffes, dark horse candidates, wild speculation, rumors, polls, speeches, rallies, conventions, etc. etc. etc. — in the end, whoever wins, as Chris Hedges says, “there’s no way to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs.” Obama inspired so many rightfully disenfranchised citizens in 2008 with messages of “hope” and “change,” but eight years later, we have a destroyed Libya and Syria — and countless other Middle East countries terrorized by our military presence — the pitiful NDAA, more mass surveillance than ever, an economy that isn’t actually getting any better. If Obama appeared to have so much potential in the beginning, yet turned out to be pretty much George W. Bush 2.0 (and in some cases, much worse), than who’s to say Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump — or whichever millionaire who’s elected — won’t renege on their campaign promises? There really is nothing stopping them. And with the sweeping, far-reaching, secretly approved legislation continues to become law, this further illustrates that the voters don’t really have a voice, and all the election fervor — like the NFL season — is a waste of time.
(Let’s also not overlook that many people don’t necessarily vote for a candidate, but rather, against a candidate. Choosing the person for the most powerful position in the world is now more or less boiled down to picking the lesser of two evils. After all the fracas that is the presidential election, it culminates in a “decision” between who’s less awful. That doesn’t sound like much of a decision to me.)
When considering the left vs. right, democrat vs. republican dialectic found in our political system, it’s also important to note its fundamentally divisive nature. In fact, one could argue that’s the entire point of our political system — to divide and conquer. Those on the right find the candidates and aims of the left absolutely detestable, and vice versa. Candidates promise to “make America great again,” but only if you happen to support the winning party, otherwise you’re SOL for at least four years (though one could argue it doesn’t matter who’s in office; it’s just a different flavor of the same poison).
With this constant bickering and further polarizing of the two sides, I’m reminded of the concept of the ouroboros, that is, the occultic symbol of the dragon eating its own tail, stuck in an endless loop of death and rebirth. How are these concepts connected, you may ask? Taking a page out of blogger Walt Garlington’s blog, the ouroboros characterizes the ever-conflicting nature of American politics in the following way:
The written constitutions pit opposing forces against one another: liberal and conservative, left and right, Republican and Democrat, Tory and Labour, rich and poor, man and woman, black and white, legislature and executive, elected and unelected officials, outsiders and incumbents, etc. ad infinitum. And from this ‘clash of opposites’ mankind in these lands is refined to prima materia: that is, it becomes more and more Godlike without the help of Christ the God-man and His Church, the fulfillment of the Devil’s promise made to Adam and Eve in the Garden.
Remember this as the (non)Decision 2016 continues to rage. Picture the serpent perpetually eating its own tail, and how we are constantly mired in an endless feedback loop of self consumption, the two sides never meeting, and how those opposing forces keeps the cycle alive.
(I could discuss the subject that democracy as we know it is actually antiauthoritarian and even demonic, but I’ll save that for another post.)
There are so many other prominent aspects of our culture that are misguiding and beguiling; it’s not just limited to sports and politics (though those are sacred tenet of the “American way”). I don’t think it would be too big of a stretch to say that most dialectics promoted in our culture are intended to misinform and lead people astray. For instance, we are told “ISIS” the biggest threat to our security, and yet our government funds them. We are also told we should welcome Middle Eastern migrants into our country with open arms, and yet the reason people are fleeing those regions is because we pay foreign mercenaries to destabilize the region, and once the refugees (mostly military-aged men) have arrived in their host country, proceed to rape/destroy anyone/anything in sight. We are told women have a “right” to do what they will with their bodies, even if that “right” means dismembering a defenseless human in their womb. And so on, and so on, and so on.
This leads me to the next pillar of modern-day American culture: the obsession with death. Maybe it’s just my residency in Liberal Big City, USA, that has me more attuned to this point, but from my vantage point, people love death. Some actively participate in this celebration of death, even signing their own death warrant in the process. They won’t say as much — and might not even be aware they’re doing so — but they are active participants in their own demise, as well as the extinguishing of their own lineage.
Depopulation is the name of the game, and you can find this ideal in the heart of many a young liberal. Whether it’s with the supporting of abortion — a genocide disguised as a “right” that has killed nearly 59 million people since 1973 — feminism — a neo-Marxist/Communist ideology that “frees” women from the “bondage” of motherhood in exchange for the “liberation” of corporate advancement — homosexuality — a perversion of God’s natural order, whose “culture” consists entirely on debauchery, licentiousness, and whose chief expression of “love” is ultimately Luciferian — transgender-ism — another perversion of God’s natural order, the muddling and general confusing of a biological truth — or the faux-“global warming/climate change/whatever” agenda — an anti-human movement that blames the building block of life (carbon) to be the harbinger of doom — the underlying problem, and it’s ultimate solution is thus: humanity is a cancer, and we must ultimately rid the world of ourselves.
To the average millennial (to say they’re liberal would be redundant), having a family makes no practical sense (“In this economy?? Forget about it!”); kids are loud, annoying, smelly, complicated and a major hindrance to living a comfortable life (even though they were once kids themselves); “happiness” is the ultimate aim in life, even if it comes at the expense of abandoning one’s heritage and morality (do what thou wilt, after all — who originally said that, again??); the earth is over populated with carbon-emitting, breathing, living bodies, which are the cause of too-cold and too-hot of temperatures, and they must be reduced to restore a responsible balance; there are no absolutes, except the absolute that there are no absolutes; there is no soul or spirit, except if you do yoga or observe some other type of new-age, transcendental “enlightenment”; open mindedness only goes as far as how similar another beliefs are to yours; and on, and on, and on.
But I don’t mean to limit my criticism only to those who proclaim to be “liberal”: “conservatives” can also be very much enamored with the embrace of death, just in different ways. While American conservatives tend to be more pro-family than those on the left, they don’t hesitate to support knee-jerk, overseas military action, even if that action results in the death of thousands of innocent people — many of whom are, in fact, Christian. Regardless of faith, the truth of the matter that many American conservatives will not hesitate to support military action that will supposedly spread “freedom and democracy,” when, in fact, are meant to serve the interest of multinational corporations. Also worth mentioning is that, while they proclaim to “support the troops,” no one seems to care that this frivolous, ill-founded and ultimately pointless campaigns of destruction result in untold thousands of former troops who, if they don’t die in combat, suffer from crippling PTSD, and come home to a country that can’t help them get back on their feet. A sad reality: Every day, 22 veterans commit suicide (though some cast doubt on that high a number; still, it’s a tragedy). If we were to truly “support the troops,” we wouldn’t be as eager to send them off to their potential demise, based on a totally dubious premise.
Hopefully I’ve illuminated enough examples of how deception and death are chief lynchpins of American “culture.” There are good, virtuous people in this country, and it’s not all bad; there’s a lot for which to be thankful, and I am. But the manufactured, predominant “culture” is where I take issue, and it’s something most people, sadly, don’t question; it just is. I don’t hold on to hope of some mass awakening, but try my best to educate myself, and hopefully, the few readers of this blog as well, even if they disagree with my premise. I believe it necessary to take a step back from the glut that is professional sports, the ouroboros of electoral politics, the fashionable desire to stamp out life, and ask oneself, “What is this about? Why do I believe what I do? Does this culture represent me? Why, or why not?”
I should also note that, while I may be very critical of modern, secularized culture, I do my best not to judge others whose lifestyle/beliefs differ from my own. I write at length about these things not to prove I’m somehow smarter or better than others (after all, I am the first among sinners), but rather to introduce a different way of thinking to whomever stumbles across this blog. That’s it!
I will close with two quotes, one funny (and sadly truthful), and one that is the Truth.
From Jay Dyer:
Amerika is just this – Chuck E. Cheese speeding at you on a Harley, holding Crowley’s Magick in Theory and Practice,with Jenna Jameson mounted on the back. What is evil and rebellious is even fake – just look at the Madison Avenue manufactured youth culture. Son and daughter are busy being androgynous while dads can pretend they’re hell’s angels bikers on Harleys to fulfill their most ridiculous, inane fantasies. Amerika is a cartoon. Amerika is Jackass. Amerika is a dude flying off a building on a skateboard in his underwear into a pile of Red 40 and corn syrup.
And from St. Paisios the Athonite:
What I see around me would drive me insane if I did not know that no matter what happens, God will have the last word.