Sell freedom, buy control
I’ve just had a guest post published on David Malone’s excellent blog site (Golem XIV – Debt Generation) called Sell freedom, buy control.
This was inspired by a quote from Neil Postman’s “Amusing ourselves to death” in which he makes the case that the modern world is closer to Huxley’s dystopia than Orwell’s.
In the article, I make the case that we have in fact adopted a most pernicious combination of idealogies:
“far from a free culture, we are in fact in the grip of a highly controlling one; it’s just that we don’t recognise its form.
The late 20th century would best be characterised as the overt promotion of individual freedom, mobility and opportunity, yet the covert exertion of behaviourist control methods.
We are seeing the omnipresent spectre of debt, a modern Feudalism enacted through state sponsored loan sharking.
The gap between rhetoric and reality is just getting wider and wider. It is in effect little more than ‘sell freedom, buy control’.
Orwell foresaw an Autocracy, whereas Huxley a Technocracy. However, both were Dystopian visions of a future which were intrinsically neither two-faced nor intentionally destructive. Instead the greatest risk facing us in the 21st century is the duplicitous trap unfolding every day; the worrying trend of an emboldened Kleptocracy.”