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Sunday, May 31, 2015

gallant spirit III - the enemy

gallant spirit I
gallant spirit II
gallant spirit III
gallant spirit IV

You are navigating a meat-body figurine that is highly sensitive to pain; and its appended mind, to anguish and foreboding. Both, figurine and appendage, will be stimulated daily by pictures and reports of an elusive entity consumed with a desire to cause you pain and anguish, preferably at the same time, preferably filmed on low resolution video that can be easily uploaded to the world wide web. But fear not: sweeping laws will be put in place to prevent you from being hurt; armaments will be amassed to defend against him.


You will hear of him by many names, in many tongues, yet you will never see him except on said videos. He will be faceless, but characteristic enough that you will always and easily be reminded of him: his skin color will be so and so, and he will be garbed in a fashion that is not your own (like a ninja, for instance). Recognition is paramount; understanding is secondary, if necessary at all.

Should any serious questions arise in your appended-mind as to the nature of this enemy, you will be reminded of the horrors that you yourself committed – not you directly, but the line of figurines from which you descend. You will shudder in shame thinking of these horrors and conclude that such crimes must never be committed again, whereupon you will desist from any further inquiry. To insulate yourself from committing such horrors you will accept to relinquish your power of choice by delegating to a body of wise men – the same wise men who sit atop the abovementioned battery of armaments –  the power to take decisions on your behalf.

Appended-minds can be easily directed using certain keywords that stimulate anguish, indignation, fear and other vectors from the emotional pallet. Keywords, broadly disseminated, are part of a process called propaganda. 

Propaganda is employed as a tactic of war, but it is as readily employed in times of peace. Without a doubt, it is the most effective weapon in the armament because it remains active for many weeks, even months after its release, has no identifiable smell and is – to all intents and purposes – invisible. It functions rather like a gas spreading into the population. Here’s where you come in.

As a member of this population you will happily volunteer to disperse this gas to peers, repeating keywords such as racists, terrorist,  fascist, homophobe, and of course the most effective of all, anti-Semite, alluding to the horrors committed by your cursed forebears. In essence, it functions like a silencer-gas. Once this gas is inhaled, the individual will be filled with a sense of outrage and he will disperse this gas further afield, insulating himself from any critical thinking and silencing those that still practice it.

By way of example: a young girl will announce to you, as part of a televised keyword-broadcast, that the enemy is pulling live newborns from incubators (recall the broadcast leading up to the war in Iraq). Terrible outrage will fill your breast! You will be comforted in the knowledge that you are not such an incubator-violator, but a good biped figurine with a sound appended-mind. And it will give you a sense of self-worth to shout down anyone who does not violently oppose the violators of incubators, but it will never be questioned whether such things are true. 

Truth? What is such a thing?

It is not an object; it is simply what IS and what HAS BEEN. It is therefore by its nature historical. The record-keeping is something else however; that is historiography, and alas truth is much absent therein. The record is written and propagated by different factions of meat-figurines, each with their own imperfect appended-mind, each keen to ensure a certain outcome for themselves in the future, which is to say that more of their own meat-figurines will be propagated forward and that more pleasure overall will accrue to them as a group.

Historiography, peppered with the right keywords, can elicit in your appended-mind such indignation that it would not be disturbed by the knowledge that guided missiles are raining down on a village in, say, Serbia. Filled with such historical outrage, you might even feel justified in your desire to see the whole population exterminated! 

Oh... uh... wait… what am I saying? What about the horrors committed by my cursed forebears? Such horrors must never be repeated!
 
And so your appended-mind will hastily conclude, as previously, that you cannot be trusted to think for yourself since this righteousness in your breast leads to such thinking.  Your resolve is thus strengthened: wise men will decide if it is judicious to exterminate people, such as in Dresden, Hiroshima, Belgrade, Gaza, to prevent, at all cost, that the horrors once committed by your cursed forebears should ever be repeated... today... by The Enemy*.

*soon to be released as a motion picture film, starring George Clooney