Ancient Roman space-man “proof” (top photo)
(Hey cool, that title has nifty meter – up there with “Hemingway hated disco music!” (a favourite, in our house)
I’m building up a whole arc of serious history posts – starting from essential considerations of logic and the psychology of perception – but before I get into more of that, this seems a good spot to refresh a side-note of some importance. When one first gets ‘political’ (that is, angry about the state of things, and actively curious about why, and what can be done) one quickly realizes that most of the stupid harmful things in the world are supported by gigantic well-entrenched lies. When the lies are big enough, it really can take a huge effort to recognize them for what they are – and also a willingness to have others give you funny looks, because your expanding reality challenges theirs as inadequate.
No war or political struggle of the twentieth century is understood honestly by any side – seriously – that’s a hard-zero. Worse, the lies are constructed so that if you believe them fully, you’re wrong, but if you completely reject them in every way, you’re also wrong. Much effort and skeptical triangulation is required.
Macro-economic matters are even more aggressively obscured – which makes it a lot easier for clever psychos to get respect from little people for endowments, than it would be if they first had to explain that the ‘gift’ money came from laying-off pops, throwing junior in jail for a tidy profit, and exorbitant compounded interest on debt first racked-up to send grandpa overseas to, as the Pythons so perfectly put it, “Keep China British.”
Some shockingly insightful truth-sources are unusually rigorous, verifiable, sincerely moral, and impressive for their particular balance and restraint – Chomsky and Zinn are right at the top of this list – but there are many others too – Adam Curtis, Jon Ronson, Robert Fisk, Chris Hedges, Gwynn Dyer, Eric Margolis – and even very popular writers like Deighton can all illuminate dark corners most helpfully (also consider works like Pynchon’s “Gravity’s rainbow” – a psychedelic masterpiece which goes with “Catch 22.” like “Failsafe” goes with “Doctor Strangelove,” to deliver a much bigger, and also incredibly important insight).
And then there are the far more sensational types – who have that same general combination of magical thinking, narcissism and naïveté as those who believe not only that UFOs do exist (possible, to be sure), but that their own curiosity (or mania) about it, will somehow make the UFOs reciprocally interested in them (surely the very stupidest conceit imaginable, in that context even more dramatically than in most).
David Icke is one of those conspiracists who gets many youngsters interested in questioning history with some fascinating commentary on British historical capitalism in particular – and then, just when he’s making pretty good sense, he adds-in the theory that the British Royal family are a group of alien shape-shifting cannibalistic lizard-people (I swear I’m not kidding, this is his touchstone).
Of course all sane people know that’s nonsense on first hearing – albeit using very similar mechanisms to those we use to buy-into the conventional historical lies and whitewash and ‘know’ them, instead. But the truly dedicated Icke fan can always turn up a new piece of ‘evidence’ – thanks to the weird and wonky obscurantist mysticism still lingering at the core of so many ancient British institutions.
Those wacky royals and their interstellar loyalties
I actually laughed out loud when I caught this totemic beauty at Osgoode Hall, glass-cased for appropriate veneration and everything. Just try and prove that this isn’t a coven-activating and dark-magic powering fragment of the original lizard-people’s transit-asteroid. Come on, I dare you, prove-it! ;o)