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Wool Over Our Eyes

Wool Over Our Eyes

It is curious to me that people do not understand that historically, perpetrators of evil have always made an effort to convince people in general that what they are doing is not evil, and in fact is good for them.

There have been no exceptions to this rule throughout history—at least none that I am aware of. I am not saying that every leader throughout history was evil, but those that were, were typically conniving.

If the militia police pulls a man from the street for whatever reason the government wants him, his family is told he was breaking the law. If there is a peaceful protest of concerned citizens, who are beaten and arrested for protesting, the general public is told they were destroying property, or attempting to overthrow the government, and thus are a threat to everyone’s well being (think Truckers Convoy in Canada).

Prisoners in a prison must remain orderly and calm or they will lose rights and privileges. Citizens in a community must do the same. If you don’t make waves you will remain happy. If you close your eyes and don’t care what is going on around you, then you won’t make waves.

The strange thing again is that people do not connect the dots. Not only will they refuse to see what is plainly in front of them, they will deny it with such vehemence and conviction, accusing anyone attempting to enlighten them they are conspiracy theorists, rabble rousers, insane, or worse.

Since we as a human culture have experienced this phenomenon so often, why do we, as a mass, fall for it every time? “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.” Nietzsche had something to say about this, but I am lacking in my knowledge of Nietzsche to say more…something about people’s innate desire to be enslaved.

I often think about the handful of people in Nazi Germany in the mid ’20s and early ‘30s, before Hitler and National Socialism took over the country, who saw clearly the black tide approaching. It was even less obvious at this time that some petty Austrian big mouth like Hitler would one day rule with an iron and murderous fist.

But this handful of people knew unmistakably what was about to roll over them. If you were one of those, and looked, even with a cursory glance, you would see it, and you would not have dismissed it. Once he came to power in 1933, six years went by before Europe was thrown into World War II with the invasion of Poland and the UK’s declaration of war.

By then it was too late to stop him. Hitler was a single man, although the Nazi movement originated with others who chose Hitler as their mouthpiece and later as their leader.

What is happening now is not as subtle as the National Socialist movement in Germany was. Believe it or not, Germans were smarter and better informed, but they also were more beaten down than people of the West are today, and were quite vulnerable and more receptive to a savior-figure. We live in Huxley’s Brave New World, essentially dumbed down to focus only on the tiny screen six inches from our face and are captivated with any sort of instant gratification.

As Dr. Mark McDonald explains it, we are a continent of comfortists, blinded by our cushy lives. (Forgive me for using the collective “we” and “you”—know that I am aware most people reading this are not included in this collective.)

Speaking of the German people at the onset of Hitler’s power, many would have rolled their eyes and smirked if anyone began a conversation with, “this Hitler fella, we have to be careful with him.” Most Germans didn’t even know who he was, let alone believed he would rise to brutal power and plunge the entire country into despair.

Before that despair, however, he was Germany’s saviour. And once the average German began to accept his place and power, they began to adore him. Just as I state above, he hoodwinked them all with juicy carrots, and at that time Germany was desperate for any sort of carrot—almost literally, considering it cost a bushel full of German marks to buy one.

It is somewhat complicated to compare what is happening in our world now with what happened in Europe in the decades following World War I. They are radically different times, and the circumstances are, in many regards, also radically different. But don’t let that fool you into complacency and a refusal to look at the glaring similarities.

A storm of a different kind is definitely rolling over the horizon. Maybe it is of a different sort, but it is definitely a storm, and a wicked one at that, and has some fundamental similarities we can’t ignore. We mustn’t be like the rank and file Germans of old, or like most of mid 20th Century Europe and US at that. We must take note, and be aware.

There are many reasons why Hitler could hoodwink the world. Some of the bigger reasons were the elite’s response to his harangue. They liked the guy, and found gain in his war talk (which didn’t really even start until his invasion of Poland, at least not publicly).

This is one thing that makes our current situation similar to the events of 1925 to 1945.

The powers in the world, the corporations, the banks, even the governments, were not wholly opposed to Hitler’s plans (largely my opinion, but supported by many I have read). They at the very least played along, or at worst, looked the other way. It was complicated, as usual, actually probably more complicated than what we are seeing today.

To say the least, this global confusion and deceit set the stage for a lot of black and white thinking. The world population, at least the part that wasn’t so busy trying to simply survive, was largely in the dark. Sound familiar?

As I said in the first paragraph of this piece, people are principally too trusting. They believe that powerful people are sincere when they say they are looking out for them. There are simply too many contradictions to this assumption throughout history.

Actually, I would be hard pressed to find any example where leaders truly did have their subjects at heart. At least the officials that made a name for themselves as leaders.

There may be a few who have appeared to do that and the history books have been kind to them. But there is always another story.

Leaders seem to see the people they lead as something other than adult humans. They are children—sheep—who don’t know what is best for them. I am sure there were some leaders who truly believed they were good people doing good things. Even Hitler believed he was doing what was best for the German people. Lenin certainly thought as much for Russia.

Sorry to use so much Hitler reference, he and his Nazis are such a good example of an authoritarian take over. The beginnings of the Soviet Union are not even as intriguing as such an example—Lenin and the Bolsheviks coming to power is quite interesting for other reasons, such as the collapse of inept imperial power and bringing the proletariat into what they were tricked to believe was self government. Hitler is spicy for different reasons.

There is more to say on this topic as usual, but I will leave it at that. Please share your thoughts in the comment section. Why do you think people in general are so trusting of their government and their leaders, or, for that matter, nearly anyone in authority?


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