As one subservient soul responded, within a particular business setting, to a morning greeting, the retort, as usual, went along the line of “living the American dream”. Otherwise translated into real-world implications, it is the intentional indentured necessity of job security by whatever it takes, long-term debt fulfillment and longevity of servitude for the satiation of material goods. Consumption drives the corporate-state, in order to gratify an unbalanced socio-economic distribution. Typically, in unscientific informal polling, one after the other, the response is very similar by many.
Warning from another era, decades long gone, some in high places cautioned the threatening consequences of a “military-industrial complex”. While conspiracy theorists, some wise and some foolish, run amuck in chasing the villains, other cautionary tales should go unheeded. From thoughts to wardrobe, the profiteers abound. Along the roads of well-worn travels, the many acquiesce so easily, and yet, a society unravels. The perceived need for the greed knows only the devolving unlimited depths of consumption. For all the pontiffs and their pontifications, much is superficial and hypocritical.
As to this perceptive slant, enslavement by gluttonous consumerism aids the premeditated regression of the murderous extinction of the human species. Neither a majority of academics, nor an assembly of politicians, proselytize the quest for self-evolution. To transform and transcend the original primal nature, in so doing changing into the transhumanism of enlightened ascendency, such is the present abhorrence for discovery of deeper relevance. Anti-thinking replaces intellectual curiosity and creative discovery for the inventiveness of alternatives perceptions.
Thinking, by contrast, has depth of meaning and unlimited range. From shadowy spheres of thought filled dreams, to awakened status of indentured necessity, ideations labor with the unfree psycho-physicality social bondage. Liberation fights for every moment, but not for all. Most would rather accept the oppression of conformity and consensus. The “corporate ladder”, the “public trust”, and the “born again” call of the “tortured soul”, require choices to be made, and costs to be paid. And so, consumption is piled high upon the carnality of decadent descent into the primordial satiations of immediate gratification and mediocre subsistence.
After studying issues relative to social mobility and societal opportunities, one economics researcher concluded the “American Dream” is a myth. On the contrary, such data suggests that the idea of “working hard” will not necessarily guarantee social advancement. Upon conducting an examination of economic data over the last 100 years, some researchers lament the diminishing status of large numbers of people. That is to say, investigators poke in the direction of poverty, income inequity, I.Q. point variations, and overall decreasing returns on social investment versus labor contributions. Economic disparity continues to deepen between the upper and lower socio-economic realms.
While a certain elite, an oligarchic status, remain secure in higher realms, and overly compensated, the social strata remains increasingly difficult to ascend for the vast majority. To ensure the complexity and entrenchment to the “pyramid scheme”, debt and its accompaniment, consumption, are cleverly promoted. Perhaps an argument could be made that socio-economic conditions are a growing enormously deceptive and well-contrived Ponzi scheme. At the same time, wealth accumulation for the few is intimately connected to enormous expanse of global economies.
Meanwhile, for most, their intentional “dumbing down” has effectively contributed to a rapacious burdensome economic system, as well as a gluttonous materiality of self-indulgence. But for a moral imperative, or prime directive, the purposeful neglect of such insistence, premeditates the negativity of contemporary societal stupidity. Then again, what else might be expected from a species that fails to learn from its own history? Essentially, not much is new in terms of humanity’s inhumanity to fellow humanity. Dysfunctional behaviors continue.
With regard to the issues of modern day enslavement, there are diverse, sometimes hidden, ways and means by which people are enslaved. Slavery today infers bondage, oppression, and servitude and so on, as a mechanism to control others. For some, the very idea of slavery conjures historic images of horrific and tortuous tyrannies upon particular groups of people. By contrast, today the practice is sometimes subtler, deceptive and unusually devious. A deeper analysis goes beyond the typical typologies of criminal enterprises such as human trafficking, to the deceptions of economic entrapment. Horrendous inflictions in the various forms of “involuntary servitude”, takes on divergent inflictions that hastens devolving consequences for human civilization.
Advertising schemes, tricks of the trade, mass marketing behaviorism, as opposed to using the nebulous term called psychology, manifest a range of intentional “capture” of the public’s thinking processes. As the vast majority surrenders their critical and investigative analyses of consumptive oriented actions, a few remain alert and skeptical. A healthy sense of questioning every socio-economic and political interaction is a productive survival method of operation. Humans are adept at deception, as opposed to wise and mature efforts for personal change and transformation.
Most people will easily give into or give up their rights, especially freedom of thought, and subsequently freedom of movement, so long as comfort, consumption and care can be assured. Tracing the collective interactivity of mainstream society from say early 1900, to the present nearly 20 years into the 21st century, governmental encroachment can be observed in various examples. On the question of government, or primarily the federal government, many people appear to be okay with giving up some freedom, in order to feel better about their material comfort.
For instance, several recent American polling services seem to suggest, at least among those who were polled, that two thirds of the respondents would give up constitutional rights for the sake of national security. Meanwhile, many look to the federal government for protection, sand a shopping list of provisions to protect and assure the pretense of safety and security. With the swipe of an overused credit card, a quick and simple dollars’ worth of coffee brings relief that hope spring eternal.
As long as 75% to 80% of population can relish in their fantasy perceptions of the “dream of fame and fortune”, the illusion can be manipulated. For misuse and abuse, politicians, and unwittingly the infotainment pundits, can continue diverse deceptions. From all-rubberized “safe” playgrounds, to college “safe places” for anxiety, along with coloring books, a sizeable segment of society needs to “feel good”. The grotesque expanse of selfishness grows by the quantum conjectures.
Of the endless allure of greedy consumption, there are no limits, but the costs are devastating individually, socially and environmentally. Such is an interesting observation of post-modern western cultures where belief system often belies actual behaviors. For instance, if surveys are truly reflective, and 80% of the U.S. population claim some religious affiliation, prohibitions against gluttony ought to be followed.
As such, every major religious ideology has a doctrine of condemnation toward greediness, and by extension, gluttony as well. In particular, the admonitions of adherents assert a disdain for materialism and the fixation on material acquisitions versus spiritual development. Yet, the hypocrisy runs deep throughout society. Naturally, there are always exceptions in every aspect of culture with noble examples. However, in the majority of the populace, selfishness runs deep. Several years ago, a major national publication ran article with a headline that read in part, “sick with greed”.
In the classical criminological sense, there is no such thing as “sickness” where human behavior is concerned. However, there is willful self-indulgence to satiate immediate gratification at the expense of others. Often heard is the reminder to be content with what one has and not the things of this world. Nonetheless, easily observed is the widespread insincerity and two-faced arrogance of consumptive over-indulgence. The practice for what many praise is all too often a different story behind the scenes. According to a 2014 global initiative studying the inequality of consumerism, the richest 20% of the population represent a consumption rate of about 77% of the resources.
Such is the stark contrast between the upper one fifth, and lower four fifths, most of whom easily buy into that illusion mentioned earlier, the so-called the “American Dream”. In reality, it is an “American Nightmare” that will contribute to the future extinction of the human species. That aforementioned global study also indicated that the poorest of the world’s population, the lower 20%, have an estimated consumption rate of about 2%. More than likely, a possible inference from that data could suggest that the wealthier upper strata, the other 20% consume nearly 80% of the resources.
Maladaptive, divisive and otherwise disruptive behaviors are matters of choice. Argue all day the efficacy of “free will” versus determinism, or independence in contrast to “hard wired” for this or that, the result is the same. On planet earth, people are the problem and human extinction is a strong probability given the exploitation of every-expanding consumption rates. In this regard, one online physics journal speculated that if everyone on the planet consumed like Americans, humans would need five earths. By further estimation, the assessment claimed by 2030, given the rate of consumption and accumulation of wastes, the environmental infrastructure will collapse. Like a science fiction movie, the rise of the “consuming class” devours earthly resources.
In an era of bloated consumerism, intentional personal excess within certain socio-economic realms serves the amative purposes of abject dependence. Of such, the insidious selfishness remains a willful enslavement. Instead of fiction, the reality is more frightening as consumption has increased significantly over the last few decades. As mentioned earlier, 80% of American population claim some affinity for supernatural belief. Based on those beliefs, nearly all ideological systems assert a concept of temperance. Seemingly, being faithful to those tenets infers that one should follow the path of temperance toward and conservation of the earth’s resources.
Of drugs, food and fuel, along with a bunch of other things, America seems to be a place of enormous appetites. From construction to destruction, easy accumulation to quick obsolescence and more replacement, nearly everything can be readily acquired and rapidly retired. Yet, most forget that includes us as well, and human extinction maybe closer than many might think. And, while the majority slumber in a wakeful state of obesity and lethargy, the “zombified” existence defaults to the primal states of constant self-gratification. Stupid thinking takes precedence over meaningful introspection.
The preoccupation with gorging on just about everything is strikingly pervasive. From corporate monopolies to political oligarchies, the scams, schemes and swindles rely on the blissfully indolent and “overfed” majority. Happily self-indulgent, smugly assured in the piety of the alleged “American dream”, most adhere to the crowded consensus of status quo conformity. In the hypocrisy of arrogant ignorance, and the crafty greediness of a handful of elites, the gradual erosion hastens the eventual demise. The expanse and depth of depraved social indifference condemns and entire species.
Profiteering in a massive casino called Wall Street, supported by a foolishly collusive mainstream media, a conceitedly insulated academia, an intentionally ill-informed gluttonous consumerism, and well-compensated politicians, the illusions are exceptionally well fabricated. Yet, few dare question or resist the American “imperial forces” that perpetrate and profit from the incessant levels of unethical and illicit manipulations. Fatted for the conformity of the flock, accepting of a dumber state of existence, and happily satiated by clever mass marketing, the vast majority relish in a fragile façade of safe mediocrity. Enslavement by gluttonous consumerism is freely chosen and purposely accepted for satiation of devolving self-gratification.