In response to an editorial in today’s Telegraph, in which the author urges MPs to win back people’s trust.
The author, like all newspaper editors, assumes that the political system itself is basically sound, resting on centuries of proud British tradition, only needing minor reform, such as the one in question relating to MP’s expenses, in order to restore the trust we are accustomed to placing in them both (the system and those who manage it).
I believe, however, that the system itself is fundamentally flawed. In fact, so flawed and so fundamentally, that it is extremely difficult (for most people, perhaps impossible) to recognise.
It’s not a “British” flaw, but one fundamental to all states, whereby democracies like Britain and America may be the only ones capable of correcting it. Not that it will be a quick or easy task. Far from it.
Because it has so many familiar and habitually rationalised manifestations, making it very difficult to recognise their true nature, the best way of depicting this flaw is by way of analogy. Even if initially you find it outrageous, please at least think about it, rather than just dismissing out of hand. After presenting it, I’ll explain it.
The state is like an abusive step-parent, which did away with our natural, loving parents (our original tribes and nations) long ago, before we had any memory of them, bringing us up to believe that it was our natural parent, with our best interests at heart and thus deserving of our love, loyalty and obedience.
For this reason, we are all emotionally and materially dependent on the state (as we evolved to be on our tribe), which it then uses, not with everyone’s best interests at heart, as it would have us believe, but to facilitate society’s self-exploitation, to the advantage of power, wealth and privilege.
If you are one of those the state favours, placing you in a position of power, wealth or privilege, as everyone who’s anyone in society is, you will, naturally enough, feel little inclination to fundamentally question the status quo, and even those not favoured, because of their dependency on the status quo and on those in power, wealth and privilege, will also fear questioning it.
Thus, and through the mythologisation of history, the state succeeds in getting us to identify with it as our NATION, just as a child, knowing no better, would identify with an abusive step-parent, at least, until it got older and became capable of questioning their behaviour; and even then, because of the strong emotional attachment and continuing material dependency, it would be a long, difficult and painful process.
The STATE is not our NATION. This is the fundamental FLAW I’m referring to.
This deception, having been imposed on us for so long (initially by the medieval aristocracy and clergy) has been internalised to the extent that virtually everyone believes it.
Back to MP’s expenses: off course they took advantage, bending the rules and in some cases, because they assumed that they could get away with it, actually breaking them. Because that’s what we ALL do, given the opportunity. It’s what the SYSTEM was created for and has developed to facilitate. Only, we deceive ourselves (as if under the influence of post-hypnotic suggestion) into believing otherwise.
We are supposed to believe that the primary concern of the Queen (our head of state) and her (royal) family is to SERVE their “nation”. I’m sure they believe it, and perhaps they do; but then, who wouldn’t for the rewards on offer: great material wealth, the highest possible social status, the very best accommodation (in extravagant excess), transportation (no standing in the tube or waiting for a bus for them), education, health care, etc. What more could anyone possibly want for themselves and their family, and not just nuclear, but extended and including future generations?
Thus, our Royal Family, equating as it does, great wealth and privilege (although no longer great political power) with the highest social status, is the very epitome of this deception.
Am I suggesting that the Queen is a our abusive step-parent? Yes – symbolically. Not that getting rid of the royal family in itself would change anything fundamentally, any more than it has in France or America, where the state is no less of an abusive step-parent than it is here.
Recognising its inherently abusive nature, the political right always wants to reduce the role of the state to a minimum, which, however, exposes society at large to excessive (to the extent of being self-destructive) exploitation by those in wealth and power.
The political left, seeking their own advantage (power, wealth and status) from the state, rather than from private capital, choose to take seriously (ideologically and idealistically believing) the myth of it being a nation, with a duty of care for all its members, and to sharing out its wealth, as of course a genuine nation (the extension of our original tribe) would do.
In the past, the British state was able to maintain the deception of being a nation, thereby calling itself a “nation state”, because in many respects it (we) resembled one: a nation, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, being
“a large aggregate of people so closely associated with each other by factors such as COMMON DESCENT, language, CULTURE, HISTORY, and occupation of the same territory as to be identified as a DISTINCT PEOPLE” [my capitals].
But Britain, having now gone multi-ethnic in such a big way, no longer even resembles a genuine nation, given that “ethnic” is derived from Greek, ETHNOS, meaning a NATION or a PEOPLE. To call it such is an oxymoronic absurdity, but one we are forced into believing, or at least in paying lip-service to, under threat of otherwise being condemned a “racist”. The state is determined to perpetuate the deception of being a nation, in order to legitimise itself and the power it wields.