Nope. Thanks to the power of Dellusion offered by the Bush Administration and the Neocons. Why?
How can such a large percentage of the US population remain blinded by denial in the face of so much evidence which flatly contradicts their view of
reality? When the rest of the world clearly sees and deplores what is happening, how is it that a majority of the US population-which prides itself on
freedom of information and informed democracy-has not clue what is really happening? How is this delusion being maintained? Through a few simple
1. Promote a system of socialization in schools that trains people to respect and obey authorities and not to question the system.
The ideological purpose of school is to inculcate students into a system of obedience which will prepare them for the workplace and turn them into
complacent, unquestioning citizens. Teachers are themselves indoctrinated while they are still in college. When I once looked into obtaining a
teaching degree at a major teaching university, I was first given a verbal examination to find out how I would handle various situations. The exam
concluded that I had a tendency to handle things in a non-authoritarian manner (that is, I tried to teach students to think for themselves and give
them a voice in decision making), and I was told I would have to go through a program of behavioral modification before I could undertake a teaching
Students are expected to obey teachers and to ask permission for everything, including attending to their own bodily functions. Free time is severely
restricted and any child who shows a tendency to daydream is deemed afflicted with attention deficit disorder and recommended for medication. Creative
and individualistic thinking is allowed only within narrow channels. To paraphrase Utah Phillips, our educational system equips us with the tools of
the ruling class, but teaches us nothing of the history and the tribulations of the working class.
For a thorough discussion of the educational system, please read The Underground History of American Education, written by John Taylor Gatto, New York
State teacher of the year in 1991. Mr. Gatto subsequently resigned from his teaching position, and dedicated his life to teaching people about the
true nature of the educational system and the development of alternatives. You can read his book online or purchase a print copy at
For a short article by Mr. Gatto on the first six lessons all school children in the US are taught, go to
this site www.cantrip.org...
Another short overview of the US educational system can be found at
For a classic alternative to the US educational system, read Francisco Ferrer's The Origin and the
Ideals of the Modern School, dwardmac.pitzer.edu...
2. Encourage and rely on a social system where anyone who dissents is viewed as deviant.
This factor ties in with the socialization process of the schools mentioned above, and with the religious fundamentalism mentioned below. Once you
vocalize your dissatisfaction with the current socioeconomic system, you become an outcast and may even be viewed as a pervert. This ostracism has
been observed and commented on by social psychologists in a number of social settings. This mechanism is responsible for the insular quality of most
social groups, and breeds the "either you're with us or against us" mentality espoused so recently by George W. Bush. Through this mechanism, the
influence of the social pariah is limited. The dissident's only hope is to join a social group which shares his or her views. See Whistleblowers:
Broken Lives and Organizational Power by C. Fred Alford (Cornell U. P., 2001).
3. Rely on and encourage family dysfunction, so that people are reacting from their own inner wounds and seeking acceptance and forgiveness.
Coming from a dysfunctional family, a man or a woman is less likely to practice critical thinking and more likely to think in a reactionary manner
based on his or her personal emotional wounds and immature psyche. A member of a dysfunctional family generally harbors some feelings of inadequacy
and will strive to conform and be a good citizen in order to gain acceptance and to be forgiven for his or her perceived faults or failings. For a
powerful study of the relationship between authoritarian parenting and the espousal of punitive and authoritarian policies in adult life, see The
Politics of Denial, by Michael Millburn and Sheree Conrad (M.I.T. Press, 1998).
4. Reinforce the atomization of society so that people have fewer opportunities to communicate openly.
The atomization of society is an effect of the commercialization of everyday life and the privatization of the commons, along with the growth of
private car ownership. The barn raising, the fall harvest, the sewing circle, the Sunday picnic, and barter have been replaced by freeways, shopping
malls and television. The effect of this atomization of society is the limitation of public discussion and social activity. Instead of basing your
view of reality on the world you perceive around you and an open discussion of issues, reality largely becomes a construct of the electronic media.
Neighbors become nuisances at best, and the community at large is perceived to be a hostile place of drug fiends, rapists and muggers. The friendly
stroll is replaced by the harassed drive where you must vie for the road with other aggressive drivers. The friendly barter or community market is
replaced with an impersonal commercial outlet where you must compete with other shoppers for overpriced goods which are generally supplied by
underpaid workers. See Geography Of Nowhere: The Rise And Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape, by James Howard Kunstler (Free Press, 1994), and
Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community, by Robert Putnam (Simon and Schuster, 2000).
5. Keep people stressed, afraid and insecure, while reporting that the economy is improving using only data for the upper percentiles of the
This factor actually comprises several factors which interact to keep people in a state of confusion, frightened, insecure and wondering where they
Though it is instilled in us at public schools that this is a free country where anyone can become a millionaire if she simply puts her mind to it,
people find themselves struggling just to stay afloat, working long hours or holding down two or three jobs. The effect is to keep workers stressed,
preventing them from thinking clearly and leaving them without the time and inclination to study the important issues and take a critical look at
major events. The stressed individual is, instead, inclined to simply accept what is presented to him or her in a few minutes of televised news
broadcast or in a glance at the headlines of the daily newspaper.
While struggling to stay afloat, the stressed worker is presented with a picture of a healthy and robust economy, where the stock market is bounding
and the economy is awash in prosperity. This picture of economic prosperity is not tainted by statistics such as the number of chronically unemployed
who have used up their unemployment benefits, or the number of underemployed. This economic picture does not mention that in comparison with the cost
of living the wages of the average worker have actually been in decline for the past thirty years, or that CEOs now make up to 500 times what their
blue collar employees earn. It does not mention how overvalued the stock market has become, the derivatives bubble, the housing bubble or any of the
other bubbles which are preparing to burst with disastrous effect. It avoids discussing how our economy is subsidized by money laundering, or the
large scale looting of our economy. Nor does it portray the level of personal debt, or the skyrocketing number of bankruptcies and foreclosures.
In short, the struggling worker is given a picture of the economy from the perspective of a CEO, to go along with the ruling class history which was
taught to him and her in school. In trying to reconcile this image of reality with their own struggle to stay afloat, the stressed worker is often
left to conclude that he is at fault for failing to take advantage of all the opportunities around him, or that she is simply plagued by bad luck.
On top of this, we are bombarded with sensationalized news stories (murders, rapes, robberies, drive-by shootings) which serve to frighten us and make
us more wary of social interaction. And then there are the terrorist alerts issued periodically by the Department of Homeland Security: vague,
undefined alerts whose purpose can only be to increase public paranoia.
So in reality we as a nation were handed dellusion, no freedom and fear on a silver platter without even a choice.
[edit on 1-12-2004 by mrmulder]