“I am gross and perverted, I am obsessed and deranged, I have existed for years but very little has changed, I am the tool of the government and industry too for I was destined to rule and regulate you…I’m the slime oozing out of your tv set”
-Frank Zappa from ‘I Am The Slime’
“In a very real and terrifying sense, our Government is the CIA and the Pentagon, with Congress reduced to a debating society. Of course, you can’t spot this trend to fascism by casually looking around. You can’t look for such familiar signs as the swastika, because they won’t be there. We won’t build Dachaus and Auschwitzes; the clever manipulation of the mass media is creating a concentration camp of the mind that promises to be far more effective in keeping the populace in line.”
-Earling Carrothers ‘Jim’ Garrison
“We deal in illusions, man. None of it is true. But you people sit there day after day, night after night, all ages, colors, creeds. We’re all you know. You’re beginning to believe the illusions we’re spinning here. You’re beginning to think that the tube is reality and that your own lives are unreal. You do whatever the tube tells you. You dress like the tube. You eat like the tube. You even think like the tube. In God’s name, you people are the real thing, WE are the illusion.”
As with all other things, television can be used for either good or evil depending on the intentions of those who control it. Karl Marx once said that religion was the opium of the people, he was only partially right, had he possessed the alleged ability of Nostradamus to glimpse into the future he would see that religion as powerful as it may be as an ‘opiate’ could be blown away by an innovation of technology that was still nearly a century away, a medium with the potential to become the ultimate societal drug, one far more powerful than any other: television aka, the electronic crack pipe
…..oooooh daddy, give me a hit of that e-crack!
Television has in the course of the last fifty years become such a potent force of the infinite possibilities of mass mind control and public manipulation that there is no way that the government could possibly ignore it as a tool to either suppress ideas and dissent or to manufacture consent and compliance as well as to destroy the will and the intellect of the people. It has been used by both corporate and government forces, by the former to sell an illusion that generates consumerism and by the latter to domesticate or otherwise distract, it is used by institutionalized religion to spread a militant fundamentalist version of Christianity. The television explosion has been accompanied by directly proportional explosions of mental health problems, violence, debt and most importantly of all, ignorance.The CIA has always been obsessed with mental manipulation and used LSD in crude, early experiments with mind control but eventually found it to be unreliable. Acid you see would always eventually wear off, leaving the subject wrecked, confused and at times rendered mentally ill as a result of being ‘dosed’. LSD is indeed a very potent drug, it effects each individual differently and consequently each individual would not necessarily have a consistent reaction each time that the drug was administered. I experimented with this drug on occasion in my younger days and can personally attest to the unpredictability of the effects that ranged from euphoric king of the world confidence and insight to manic laughter and enhanced sensual perceptive capabilities to a horrible paranoid depressiveness where every demon from your past would surface to rip a hole in your mind at the very time that your consciousness was in its most vulnerable state, often leaving me mentally wrecked for days at a time and suffering debilitating flashes of guilt and insecurity…and this was only at very small dosages, nothing like that of which that the government regularly dosed subjects with during experiments, most often unwittingly so that a test subject could be observed while the subjects unraveled and at times went insane.
There is a whole history of this that the public is not necessarily aware of, the project was known as MK ULTRA, one of those that was actually leaked or otherwise declassified among other acronyms and those interested can find accounts of this particular testing online at several locations and this one
is a good jumping off point as any.But I digress…
The acid is the ticket to either a great or a really bad trip at the time that it is effective and in the bloodstream but it does eventually work its way out of your system whereas the constant stimulation of the brain by television has no limit. There is no recovery from the effects of the endless assault of advertising and public relations experts, only reinforcement. Television has provided a medium for mass marketing for big business ever since its inception, these people have been imbedding ideas in our minds from the earliest days of the development of our cognitive abilities, if you think that this is paranoia just ponder the marketing strategy of a corporation like McDonalds which directs a large amount of it’s advertising towards children to take advantage of the ‘nag factor’ where the children pester their parents into visiting the local Mickey D’s for the family friendly atmosphere, enclosed play area and movie tie ins. When I was a kid there were the characters Mayor McCheese, Big Mac, The Hamburgler and the Grimmace among others that were ubiquitous on Saturday mornings, the only time for kids to get a full load of cartoons prior to cable television. McDonalds is but one example of how television is used to create an image in the minds of the youngest and most impressionable in society in order to create lifetime customers. This is a marketing model that was immediately seized on by the public relations industry and the government, both of which were fully aware of its power and potential to mold minds.It is certain that elements within the government immediately realized the mind controlling potential of television just as big business realized that the new medium could be harnessed for advertising and commercial purposes so did the power brokers realize that it could be similarly utilized to manufacture consent, a term coined by Noam Chomsky, a great social critic who is sadly confined to the fringes of the alternative media in this country.
The coming of the 1980’s, Ronald Reagan (product as president) and emerging technologies that would be able to prolong the mental assault 24/7 the American public slowly began to accept televised illusions as real life, revisionist historical entertainment as fact, the glorification of wealth over all else as attainable and realistic and the myth of Rambo as a realistic personification of American foreign policy. I do not have enough time or space to look at this topic here so as to do it justice. The 1980’s saw the spread of corporate nationalist propaganda delivered over hundreds of channels, each appealing to a particular segmentation of a populace too mired in the pathetic quality of the daily grind of their boring and irrelevant lives. Now whenever they needed a fix, the ability to click the little button on the black remote and to be transported into a different world, a world of escape from the drudgery, a world where they could collectively bond with role models test marketed to appeal to their particular fancies, to be politically socialized by talking heads spewing radical ideologies, unencumbered by the Fairness Doctrine which was repealed under Reagan and which would forever change their way of thinking as well as to demonize what had been the real America prior to January 20 1981. They were given everything and anything in order to keep them tuned in so that the propagandists could keep the stimulation applied, the indoctrination process could continue uninterrupted, the herd could be brought to order and shepherded in directions that were desirable to their masters.Television in itself is a relatively new invention, having only gained mass exposure in the past half century or so but if you want to approximate a time when the demarcation line between fantasy and reality in American life began to become defined it would definitely be in the early 1980’s with the explosion in the satellite and cable television industries. This is the time that it became possible to pump 100+ channels of violence, filth, political opinion, anyone can get rich quick
scheme infomercials, lurid sexual innuendo and whatever other flotsam and jetsam of the human spirit that could be mined for profit into millions of homes throughout the country. The rise of both the radical religious right as well as the rise of the political reactionary right can both be traced to the rise in the availability of cable television and how those movements were able to use the technology to brainwash the masses.
Thus began the dumbing down:
Children became more violent and dysfunctional.
Freak shows like Morton Downey and Jerry Springer drew mass audiences while pandering to deviates who would see their sorry lives displayed for public amusement.
Today more people vote on cheese talent shows like American Idol than in most elections.
Television also creates insecurity and mental illness, viewers of too much television are often unable to make the differentiation between fantasy and reality, look at the rise in school shootings and generally deviant violent behavior. They live vicariously through the imagery designed to sell them caricatures of a lifestyle that they in turn believe that must be lived up to in order to be ‘normal’. The barrage of imagery as well as its calculated usage to influence the psyche by those whose craft is manipulation has a devastating effect on Americans. The inability to detach oneself from television worlds breeds violence, insecurity, greed and other such undesirable behavior. This is especially true for children who are very impressionable, there are highly paid marketing firms who specialize in trying to get the products and or ideas of those who pay them seared into the minds of kids from the earliest age possible in order to create lifetime customers. Is this evil? If not outright evil it is certainly devoid of any sort of decent ethical principle but then again isn’t this exactly the sort of deviant behavior that unchecked capitalism is intended to produce?
Will there be a time when television fantasy, physical reality and dreams become indistinguishable to some? Is that time already here? The psychological dependence on television to create identity and loyalty should be a national shame. Generations that have been born into the cable television era have become more violent, more superficial, more unquestioning and most importantly, far dumber than those who were their predecessors.
The rise to power of the evil regime of Hitler was borne on the wings of massive public rallies, fantastic gatherings steeped in the power of nationalism, symbolism, fire, resentment and demagogic ravings of destiny. The most famous of the state sponsored bacchanalia being the 1934 Nuremberg rally, meticulously choreographed and captured on film by Leni Riefenstahl, Triumph of the Will would become the benchmark for all German propaganda. The national madness of the German people can be seen in these rallies and films, the unraveling and descent of a sophisticated society into primal and pure evil was facilitated by them.
With television there is no need for mass rallies, the demagoguery and imagery can be delivered directly into your very own living room.
ooh daddy….give me a hit of that e-crack…ain’t never comin’ back!
THINK FOR YOURSELVES!