Now onto today!
We’re Being Gaslit Into Thinking What We Have Is OK:
But let’s keep exploring and see if we can’t see how we may be feeling this way because the SYSTEM IS THIS WAY - what’s happening right now is highlighting things for a lot of us, but it’s not ‘new’ by any stretch of the imagination.
None of this is a bug in the system, this IS the system.
We’re already fundamentally separated from the means of production and therefore have to WORK for a wage, a wage that is pre-set by someone else, and this then determines if you have a quality of life or not.
This is even true if you work for yourself/are an entrepreneur, which I will talk about in my next point.
None of us are financially ‘free’, we are all dependent upon our system to approve of us/everything we work for and produce has a DECIDED upon value - our system isn’t built upon TRUE value and exchange of energy for outcome.
Basically ALL of our methods of production require that what is being sold is sold for a HIGHER price than it’s worth, OR the labor/goods being used to generate that product must be given LESS capital than the produced good will eventually be sold for. That’s how wealth generation in our systems works. Inflated value or deflated production exchange. It can be no other way. This separation of people from means of production means there can be a manufactured value set on the good/labor. Without this, no one would be getting wealthy, no one could hoard wealth. It would just be resources in exchange for work in a one to one way because it would all be based on actual value given to us, the consumer. We wouldn’t even see things as ‘consumer goods’ - we would just have things that support life/things that don’t.
The monetary system we have is fully based on manufactured value.
It’s not real.
Exploitation is HOW we have what we have.
It’s not a flaw in the system, it IS the system.
It’s a REQUIREMENT.
If we made work equitable, our entire system would collapse.
I’m not sure how deeply we actually see this for the most part. Wealth has ALWAYS been accumulated this way. When we stopped being groups that lived off the land and worked as a community and started hoarding, we’ve had the system we have. Nothing has changed for MILLENNIA.
We Don't Value What Has Value:
Which leads me to this next point where we realize that ALL of our goods and services are valued not based on what they DO for us, not based on their capacity to actually support our livelihood or what would be genuinely GOOD for us, but rather are valued based on PERCEPTION of value.
Perception of worth.
Created perception of worth.
HUMANS are deciding what is and isn’t worth the trade of effort for life necessities/luxuries.
You work a job and your employer decides how much you are ‘worth’ not based on how much profit you actually garner for the company, but based on what THEY want to pay you in order to achieve their bottom line. And what THEY get paid is determined again not by the actual value of the goods being sold, but on the public perception of the value of goods being sold.
We will pay $1000’s of dollars for a handbag or the latest gaming device while paying pennies to our health care and education workers.
Even if you work for yourself you’re still working within the context of consensus reality/perceived value in order to get paid - your customers are conditioned and living within a system that’s pre-determined for them what is and isn’t a necessity - and therefore you still have to fit yourself into the market that exists. The fact that our actors are millionaires and our janitors don’t make enough to live should tell you something about the value system we’re working with.
We all love to dream of a reality where we are getting rich for doing something actually GOOD for the world - and this is sometimes possible - but it’s far, far far from the norm. Generally, due to our conditioning, trauma and how we’re all having to COPE with this system, that which we can sell to get rich is the LEAST beneficial for life overall, and that which has actual true value, is greatly under-appreciated. We as a culture don’t generally value what has value. We’re too tired, overworked, confused and in need of numbing and stimulation.
What’s popular isn’t what’s best.
We Don't Value What DOES Have Value:
We’re all trained to value things that don’t have value and not to value what does have value and this is part of what keeps the systems of exploitation going.
This system is so devoid of humanity, that in order to survive within it, we have to be sacrificing ourselves mentally, emotionally and physically.
We have to be sacrificing true connection.
We have to be constantly worried about fitting in and being liked because to NOT fit in and to NOT be liked is to be marginalized in some way, and THIS has very REAL negative consequences for us as human beings in this man-made, man-decided system.
If you’re out, being able to achieve what is needed for survival is very difficult. Because what’s needed for survival is not in our hands. The means of production are separate from us. Rather than seeing this, we continually look TO the very system that has created all this insecurity to sell us our security back to us via consumer goods, status and ‘identity’ in what we DO. Constantly feeling insecure because what they’re selling back to us is NEVER going to bring TRUE security - again because the system is fundamentally SET UP so that we don’t have as much power as we would need to have to achieve actual security - to the degree that’s possible in the natural reality we live in.
We’re trained to find our identity, our worth, our status and our place in the ‘pecking order’ of society based on what we do/don’t own. What kinds of media we consume. What we ‘do’ in exchange for resources. We’re trained to believe that getting to the top and constantly shifting upwards means more security. This is *kind of* true, but there's a very, very low ceiling. Having a lot of stuff and numbers on a screen.
We’re separated from our actual needs, what would actually fulfill us, what actually brings us a feeling of purpose and connection - and this is what makes us excellent consumers.
The ‘trends’ of what’s in and out change constantly. There’s always something new to consume. What you can ‘do’ in the market to make money changes from generation to generation - partially based on true demand and partially due to manufactured demand.
We’re taught what to value, and this means that we often don’t have a true concept of what is and isn’t enough.
With this we often turn a blind eye to the deeply exploitive methods by which MOST of what we consume is created - because we have to. In order to keep up, keep moving up, keep surviving, keep our own heads above water/play the social game we all have to maintain our image. We have to ignore the really shitty things we participate in on a daily basis in order to sustain and maintain what we have going. This takes work. It’s inconsistent for a reason.
Nothing we consume is priced at its actual value.
How things are produced is hidden.
We’re already being socially critiqued and given our resources based on our capacity to fit into the constructs of consensus.
We’re already living in a world where we are rated and given our provisions based on our rating.
Marginalized communities of people have been telling us this from the very beginning.
This System Exclusively Profits Those At The Top/Those Who Benefit Those At The Top:
The system is already set up to exclusively profit those at the top as well as those who 'work for' those at the top, it’s rigged to keep those people there, at the expense of and via the exploitation of the masses.
They hold the means of production and that which has actual value - the food, the power, the things we actually NEED to survive - and therefore they control the governments, the law, the systems of society in order to keep the structure how it is. If what you do and how you live supports the end of maintaining the system, you're rewarded within the system. If not, you aren't. If your exploitation benefits those at the top, you will be exploited, and working to get out of that exploitation will often be incredibly difficult work to do.
We’ve been trained to believe that anyone can get rich/find success in our systems if they just ‘work hard enough’, and to believe that those who are struggling are struggling due to some character flaw in them.
We don’t see how deeply flawed this is.
We don’t see that those who have the MOST success in our systems inherited their head-start at the very least. Even those who are ‘self made’ or ‘came up from nothing’ usually had to sacrifice themselves to the system in order to climb up the ranks, or they were invested in. They got to go to school. Someone believed in them. Someone gave them access to something along the line. They had to work so hard as to sacrifice their mental, emotional and physical health. They had to go into debt to the system via going to school or purchasing some form of capital to generate capital. Or they had to sell themselves. And what they did to get there again, in some form or fashion tended to serve the structures we live in. They got to 'success' by offering something to the system.
We CELEBRATE this.
This is the part that really hurts to hear.
We have GLORIFIED the process of dehumanization and exploitation required for anyone who hasn’t been born into wealth to accumulate that wealth.
We have made a status symbol out of working ridiculous hours, out of ruining our health, out of having no life outside of our ‘hustle’ and so on instead of seeing this as us being forced to harm ourselves in order to survive.
We've glorified being a good producer and good consumer. Someone who holds up the system.
We’ve bought into the idea that having luxury and excess is a GOOD thing instead of realizing how much exploitation is REQUIRED for that to happen. We’ve bought into the lie that we should have to sacrifice our lives in order to have goods. Which again, keeps the system working just right.
Those at the top get to give us less and less in return for our labor, and we take it. We accept it. We blame, shame and outcast those who CAN’T or don’t want to put in the ever increasing effort required to have enough or more than enough. We attack each other, judge each other, hoard from one another as those at the top continue to hoard and distribute less and less. We purchase things at lower and lower prices not wondering who is having to go without to make goods that inexpensive or even who is being exploited so that expensive goods profit only a few.
We fight AGAINST socialized medicine, high taxes that go towards everyone being given an education and access to resources, we criminalize the marginalized and so on instead of realizing we are cutting our noses off to spite our faces with ALL of these actions. We buy into the systems that again keep those at the top at the top, and we blame and shame ourselves when we don’t fit in.
We're Taxed Against Our Will And We Other One Another:
They already take part of what you earn and use it to fund things you don’t agree to.
This is complex because we DO need community funding to support societal structures. But most of what we contribute back to 'society' doesn't go to 'society.' It goes to things most of us wouldn't support if we had the actual choice.
Most of our tax money in Westernized countries goes to the military industrial complex. To but agriculture and big pharmaceutical companies. To methods of energy generation. To government employees. MOST of which we would take issue with at the very least, or are actively AGAINST.
We pay because we don’t get to opt out. We go to prison if we don’t contribute - unless we're already in the top brackets of society - then we have the means to hoard our wealth for ourselves.
We literally beg for what we can get in exchange for our labor, and then when we’ve completed that labor we are asked to turn around and give part of what we made BACK to the system, and that money is used MOSTLY to DEFEND the system. To keep those in power in power. To keep those defending those in power in a position to defend. Very little of it goes towards infrastructure, education, health care and what would be good for the community.
We have been trained to ‘other’ people groups so that we will condone violence against them - and this violence is almost always in service to those at the top staying where they are.
Again we blame our feelings of insecurity within this system - which are for the most part intentionally manufactured BY the system to keep us being good consumers and producers - on other groups, the group of the day, the people we’re being conditioned to CONSTANTLY blame for the ‘falling apart of society.’
This narrative that immigrants, the poor, those on drugs, those with addictions, those with less capacity to work, those with a different skin color than you, those with a different political/religious/ideological background than you and so on are the REASON you feel like you aren’t safe. They’re taking your jobs. They’re ruining your societal structures. They’re taking your freedom by implementing new rules around production and consumption. They literally LIVE differently than you and THAT is ruining how YOU live.
We are constantly pitted against one another, with new propaganda every week it seems, and this again keeps us nice and distracted. Now its those who take the medicine against those who won’t. We don’t get that those who are addicted, involved in crime, trying to come into the country are doing so because they are DESPERATE. Hurting. Usually coming from a lineage of trauma and abuse by the system and personally. We don’t get it. We see evil where hurt is. Where the results of the system are playing out. We demonize those who have been MOST affected instead of blaming the system.
Same shit, different day.
Again, this isn’t to say people don’t have agency. It’s to say we could all stand to have some compassion and ask WHY people are how they are - and then to ask ourselves if they are even a true threat to us or just something we’ve been CONDITIONED to fear.
We’ve all been trained to not only accept the patholagization of our adaptive mental, emotional and physical trauma responses to this system rather than looking around and seeing that if SO MANY of us are suffering/not able to succeed that perhaps, it’s the system that’s faulty, not us.
We’ve been so conditioned to accept this patholatization that we even find our sense of IDENTITY and belonging in these labels and diagnosis. We find our peer groups. Now, this isn’t to say that diversity doesn’t exist and that we shouldn’t connect with people who are like us - it’s to say that maybe we need to question the REASON we’re all suffering so much. Vs. simply accepting that we’re faulty.
The fact that what we NEED is so heavily monetized - and social safety nets are intentionally engineered out of society is why we have so much corruption and manipulation.
If this hasn’t been enough, I have one more section for you.
See you next week.