Monday, 5 September 2011

Boiling frogs in Evian water

My weekend reading was a book by a Bulgarian who aged 17, fled her homeland and the totalitarian regime, finally ending up in New Zealand only to return 18 years later and try and make sense of the new country, as opposed to the brutal socialism she was raised under.

Whilst we rage and rant about liberty, this woman experienced it all. The lack of identity, the starvation, the brutal repression of the IngSoc hammer crashing on her skull every waking moment. We may refer to 1984 as mere literature, this woman lived it, as millions did. Totalitarianism of the extreme. The only freedom being the one to worship the party whilst it enslaved all in its path. All her choices were made for her by who she knew and how connected she was to the elites. This was accepted because no one knew or cared for anything different. Just to survive was a triumph to be celebrated. This was a mere 21 years ago.

She arrived back in modern Bulgaria hoping to heal the wounds that Totalitarianism has inflicted upon her. Deeply scarred, without identity or purpose, it makes fascinating reading.

And I awake this morning and count my blessings that I do not live under the yoke of the elite. My destiny is not planned by a central committee; I am not expected to toil to achieve the glorious 5 year plan of politicians in record time. I am not a production unit, to be controlled, measured, exploited and silenced by a ruling elite. My life is not dictated by “permissions”, my thoughts are not controlled and manipulated to serve “the greater good”.

Except of course, it is.

Just as the hammer and sickle was used to flatten and enslave, our version is taxation, media manipulation and “credit”.

Behave yourself and tow the Party line or your credit rating will ensure you live in grey decaying social housing, on the piss stained 18th floor of Nelson Mandela House, Democracy Street.

You will read newspapers and watch television owned by the elites who appoint politicians as the god fathers of their children or are appointed by Politicians to broadcast their lies

You will live where the State tells you to live through strict planning laws designed to maintain the value of Dachas owned by the elite

You will obey the glorious 5 year plan to transfer your money to the banking elites or the unelected in Brussels for their “plans”. Object, by withdrawing your compliance to pay tax demands and you will be imprisoned just as quickly as any Soviet dissident was for refusing to pick his quota of turnips from the field.

Mindless, endless rules, designed to protect us from ourselves, whilst our Politicians bribe and corrupt, our Police bribe and corrupt, our media bribe and corrupt.

Our children are forced to achieve worthless State certificates of “excellence” whilst being nothing of the sort. Our Police are handed draconian powers to control us, lest we become disruptive and unproductive. At every turn, we are “persuaded” to conform, to obey, to consume – sure, the methods may not be as clumsy and brutal as a Soviet regime, but the power still remains, as ever, with an elite Politburo with no care or interest in the individual.

Hyperbole? Possibly. Of course, you can always test it by selling a 100w light bulb to people who wish to buy a 100w light bulb.

As Goethe said, “there are none so truly enslaved as those who believe they are free”

The book by the way? The Street Without a Name

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