Saturday, May 02, 2009

Swine Dance

This time it is called the "Swine Flu". The whole pattern seems to repeat itself, an outbreak, seemingly of a newly heard disease, everyone talks about it, the news show governments and meetings and plans and quarantines, people are afraid, for a few weeks your favorite news channel resembles a lot of Hollywood movies about outbreaks and after a while, everything is under control and you will never hear about it anymore, hmm... was it Mad Cow Disease? Sars Disease? Enter Swine Flu.

The whole thing seems a bit strange. I feel that there are a lot of things unsaid about these stories and the level of reality behind these shows remains a mystery. Whatever is behind all this, I assume that there exists high incentives for many controlling entities.

I wonder how the whole thing might be related to "Economy of Fear", one great article about this subject is here, a little paragraph from it:

"By keeping the population in a state of artificially heightened apprehension, the government-cum-media prepares the ground for planting specific measures of taxation, regulation, surveillance, reporting, and other invasions of the people's wealth, privacy, and freedoms. Left alone for a while, relieved of this ceaseless bombardment of warnings, people would soon come to understand that hardly any of the announced threats has any substance and that they can manage their own affairs quite well without the security-related regimentation and tax-extortion the government seeks to justify."

Or this article, with this excerpt:

The economy of fear was always used to keep people down, to remind us that there are forces out there bigger than us. But, it seems, the doomsayers try to be bigger than us, try to tell us to change our way of living, our thinking, our whole existence."

In any case, take out the mask, you won't ever get that flu!


Anonymous said...

Great point!
I wish rational thinking, logic and understanding of statistics had more of a Darwinian survival value, and the human race would become more and more aware of the inherent value (or lack thereof) of facts and numbers.
This way, we would be less and less prone to these types of mass stupidity. In fact, that's my first non-personal wish if I ever find an old battered lamp!

What you've written about economy of fear (besides being extremely relevant to our own society and resonant with our own thoughts,) reminded me of the movie V for Vendetta as a whole, and in particular, a specific speech delivered by the Supreme Chancellor Adam Sutler to his government members:
I want this country to realize that we stand on the edge of oblivion. I want every man, woman and child to understand how close we are to chaos. I want everybody to remember why they need us!(Anyone who doesn't remember this scene should see the movie again, in my opinion!) Incidentally, the role of the leader of the Orwellian dictatorship/government is played by the great John Hurt, who also played Winston Smith in the movie adaptation of the book, Nineteen Eighty-four.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't resist and not post this. I saw this poster a while back linked from Bruce Schneier's blog.