Sunday, 27 February 2011

Of Sheep and Men

For centuries, since tribal (including Greek city-state) society was taken over by the STATE, it has been organised, and power exercised, from the top down. The vast majority of men (and women) became like sheep, under the control of a few shepherds and their dogs.
In modern western democracy we sheep have a great deal of freedom, and every few years are allowed to elect a few, but far from all, of our shepherds; not that we have much choice, even with these few, who are preselected by a small number of political parties which are pretty much the same, obsessed by POWER, dedicated to the status quo, and to maintaining the state’s role in facilitating society’s self-exploitation (not least through capital) to the advantage of power, wealth, privilege and, of course, “talent”.
Although the sheep have the freedom – provided they do so peacefully and within the law – to organise THEMSELVES, grass-roots-democractically, as MEN did when they lived in tribes or city states, they don’t do so. I guess, because we are so used to acting like sheep, always expecting to be led, coaxed and coerced, and otherwise just getting on with one’s sheepish life, in which all the fundamental things are organised and taken care of by the state or capital.
On the other hand, it’s not just because we are so used to acting like sheep, since it wouldn’t be easy organising OURSELVES grass-roots-democratically now that there are so many more of us than when we lived in tribes or city states and society is so much more complicated. That would take not just MEN but SUPERMEN and WOMEN (As a boy, Superman was my favourite hero).
We are not supermen, and obviously cannot organise ourselves as we might have done in relatively small tribes or city states in the distant past, but surely, by using our intelligence and an understanding (yet to be developed) of our own human nature, we can find ways of doing so that makes MEN and WOMEN of us, rather than SHEEP . . . !?

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