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Authority, the Role
that Destroys Conscience

By Punkerslut

From RadicalGraphics.org
Image: From "Anarchy" Gallery from RadicalGraphics.org

Start Date: January 19, 2010
Finish Date: January 19, 2010

"In the highest antiquity, the people did not know that there were rulers. In the next age they loved them and praised them. In the next they feared them; in the next they despised them."
          --Lao Tzu, 600 BC
          "Tao Teh King," Part 1, Ch. 17:1

     News outlets are a natural part of civilization. The social consciousness wants to know what is happening in the community, the region, the nation, and beyond it. In television, newspaper, radio, and magazines, news is available in any form and focused on any topic. The mainstream news stations, however, always focus on what they believe are threats to society. They speak about unemployment, crime, wars, and political scandals. They'll detail the numbers of jobs lost, some horrendous murder case, a battle in a nameless and foreign land, or a sleazy politician who just had an affair. This is the news as it reads day-to-day for all of the major news carriers.

     There is a cultural effect when you are saturated with so much information. You pick up the values and ideas given to you by the source. A story about burglaries in town, for instance, will give you a conscious understanding of that fear. Someone thought enough about that to write it, and someone thought enough about the writing to publish it. It might even be in a completely different area and you're not effected, but the information itself still leaves an impact.

     Your attention has been focused on these crimes of theft as the general warning sent out to the community. And if this is the community's watch tower, when it sounds the alarm against some looming danger, you will not only feel yourself threatened. But you will feel that your family, friends, and neighbors are being threatened. Your culture naturally values the innocent who are wrongly attacked, and so this becomes your new values -- your new culture.

     A newspaper doesn't have to lie to deceive you. When the media deceives you, it is to give you a culture that you think truly represents you -- when it is a culture that is actually your enemy. If the news focuses on violent crimes in ethnic-minority neighborhoods, it will give you a racist impression. There could be just as much crime in other neighborhoods, or even far worse, but they don't have to cover it.

     There are few conditions of humanity that alter the individual than a position of authority. To command those below you, to have the submission of others, and to be revered as the compass towards a peaceful and harmonious world. All command comes with it the rule of force. There is no king or president that lived without armies. Such a ruler is intermixed between the right to everything and the praise of a controlled people. It is a situation that will warp their heart and dements their heart.

     Before long, it is their pride from the people's submission that will make their decisions. And it will be the real necessities of political life, such as eliminating enemies, that makes up their heart. Authority, the longer it lasts and the more settled it becomes, always develops towards tyranny. The role of the master has everything to darken the human conscience and to give justification to mass murder.

     The king or monarch is different, and this is the first thing they recognize. From birth until death, everything about their life has been to separate them from the common people -- from their education and upbringing to their place in religious organizations. They have an almost-natural sense of their self-worth, which is completely obvious from the words they use and how they carry themselves. So, when the king is making laws for the people, he does not see himself as making laws for someone like himself. Whether or not they have personally experienced things such as sympathy, affection, hope, and altruism, they will not be able to attribute any of these things to their people. They will be looking for something besides their experience to teach them in ruling those who are so different. If the people were good enough to make their own laws, they would only have to know themselves.

     But for a king to be good enough to make laws for others, he must fill himself with boundless knowledge, statistics, and information. Being impossible for larger populations, the king must rely on an endless amount of officials and magistrates to make reports and give suggestions and provide advice. In deciding to support one ruler or another, a person is not just choosing someone to rule over them. They are choosing someone, who chooses another person, with that government official often relying on subordinates and staff.

     For the citizen to be well-informed about the political action of voting, they need to consider a wealth of ideas. They are not just judging on whether this or that candidate will behave when in power. They are judging on how this person will choose other people. And then, they must think: given this candidate, and the type of person they would be likely to choose -- is that person going to fulfill the ideals and values that most relate to me, the citizen?

From Peace Libertad Blog
Image: From "No repression" Gallery,
from Peace Libertad Blog

"If the devices by which men can harm one another, such as private property, are removed and if the worship of authority can be discarded, co-operation will be spontaneous and inevitable, and the individual will find it his highest calling to contribute to the enrichment of social well-being."
          --Emma Goldman, 1934
          "Was My Life Worth Living?" Section III

     The citizen must make this judgment for each political candidate, for each person approaching them with a desire and will to rule others. But, then, they must also make this decision for each type of position likely to be filled by the king. One particular nominee might be thought to make intelligent decisions in choosing an economic advisor, while there is great questioning about their talent in developing culture and education. This ruler might have a great eye on choosing someone to organize defense against an invader; but this other ruler might have a keen ability for choosing those who would administer and organize scientific research. These are all questions that the average citizen must make, whether they are going to side with this royal faction or that royal faction -- whether they belong to this political party or that political party.

     Then once a ruler is chosen, once someone or a group of someones become the dominant controlling force, they alone possess the decision-making ability. The first and foremost attribute about any leader that is chosen is how they are draped in compliments. Their party or faction will not just speak about their leader's ideas. They'll speak about their leader's compassion, hope, determination, and all of the qualities one might want in a master. The only notable aspect, that comes with all leaders upon their accomplishment of power, is their pride and arrogance.

     It is not enough for a single person to write down on a piece of paper that they personally can lead society to greatness and prosperity. But if a single person writes it down, gives the paper to others, and hears it repeated by a large section of the population, they'll start to believe it. The ruler, who has been treated like a god, easily falls under the illusion of their own spell. They are ready to believe what everyone enthusiastically and passionately tells them. That is the hypnotic effect of masses ready to believe and obey. It is certain that this happens with all masters, no matter how minor a role it may play in the mind.

     What happens when law and policy fail the people? What happens when regulations don't fit the customs, when a state prohibits culture? What happens when crops fail because of land reorganization, or when the people cannot feed themselves because of trade restrictions? It was a law passed by the ruler. In every way, this master had the best intentions of the people in mind. In passing and enforcing the law, they felt that they were upholding the sacred duty given to them by their people: to lead the way towards happiness, peace, and greatness.

     When there is a failure, they doubt it. They make accusations of fraud, forgery, conspiracy, and lies. It was their goodness and love of goodness that brought them to that decision. How is it that anyone in society could criticize or reject it? It was in their unique brilliance that they made that decision, and it is in their unique pride that they refuse to repeal it. For ordinary people to make a mistake, it is something simple that needs correction. But for those who are considered the guardian of all, making a mistake requires a re-evaluation of the government, its advisors, its officials, and perhaps even its ruler.

     If it were the ordinary people who made the basic decisions in their day-to-day existence, then there would be no ego-destroying effect in mistakes. The citizens, having to suffer their decisions, can fix them. But the king does not suffer the decisions. He lives more-or-less the same, no matter how his plans may work. A king suffers when they have to correct themselves, but the people suffer when they don't correct themselves. The first is a master of all, and the second are the subjects of a few.

"Tyrants, the enemies of the very people it was their duty to make happy, maintained regular troops, apparently to withstand the foreigner, but really to enslave their countrymen."
          --Jean Jacques Rousseau, 1755
          "A Discourse on Political Economy"

     Besides pride, every government naturally has its own abilities to repress the people. Through prisons, courts, and police, every state has a way of handling those who would try to resist its domination. Whether the mistake is made by parliament or the house of lords, it is upheld by the forces of coercion -- military and police. Those who should be defending the people are persecuting them, instead. Those who ought to help their communities have become the friends of tyrants.

     In its mistake, the government failed, and in its repression, it prevents the people from changing the system. At one point, there was enough support for a new ruler to be brought into existence. But now that they have become comfortable, removing them is a bit more difficult. Propaganda, through newspapers and television, guarantee that they maintain their public charisma. Corporations, Capitalists, and the Aristocracy are the greatest financial supporters of candidates -- but it's not charity, they're buying the office. With patriotism and special interests, governments can survive the unrest of their people. And through this, they stop the people from making a new system that might better address their needs.

     People support a government or a leader because they see their liberty and empowerment, they hear ideas that they relate with and they have experiences that thrill the soul. Very few actually realize that the person they're putting into power will be morphed by the experience. Whereas before they were dependent upon the struggle and ambition of their supporters, now they are dependent upon others in government.

     Where before they once loved the common people, now they must fear ambitious and competitive peers in society's authoritarian structure. This has been the case in the past with nobles competing with the monarchy, with the monarchy competing with the church, and finally, with the capitalists competing with representative government. They may have been brought to their position of power by their mutual allies. But they hold on to that position by a constant offense and defense with their power equals. In electing a ruler, whether it is by supporting a dictator's coup, or by voting for a political party, you are destroying your candidate. You are putting them in a situation that corrupts the soul, chains the heart, and makes cruel power its own purpose.

"...the State can never be sure that prohibited and dangerous thoughts may not slip in and be smuggled somehow into the consciousness of the population that it governs. Forbidden fruit has such an attraction for men, and the demon of revolt, that eternal enemy of the State, awakens so easily in their hearts when they are not sufficiently stupified, that neither this education nor this instruction, nor even the censorship, sufficiently guarantee the tranquillity of the State. It must still have a police, devoted agents who watch over and direct, secretly and unobtrusively, the current of the peoples' opinions and passions."
          --Mikhail Bakunin, Late 1800's
          "Marxism, Freedom, and the State," Chapter 3


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