Friday, 9 June 2017

Power is Truth

If there's one thing this UK election has highlighted, it's the utter folly of accepting a slim, simple majority in any referendum, as the resulting division is guaranteed to bring uncertainty and uncertainty is not good for the economic viability of any country. Strong and stable demands a large majority. Are the long knives about to be wielded? The Conservatives have now proven, in the referendum and this election, that political opportunism is the order of the day. For the 3rd time within a couple of weeks, I repeat that any endeavour having self-glorification as its endpoint is bound to end in disaster.

I was watching the James Comey testimony on TV yesterday and at one stage a Senator said something like; "It's always good when truth speaks to power." Speaking truth to power was a phrase allegedly coined by Quakers in the 1950s.

The problem in the USA, and now the UK, is that, increasingly, whatever power says is rapidly becoming truth, even if delivered by Twitter, and anyone who disagrees is labelled a traitor.

Trump is an arch proponent of the Orwellian power is truth ideology, along with a lot of news media outlets.

The problem is that if enough people believe the lie and the myth, it's as good as a reality. You only have to look at the paper money in your wallet - intrinsically worthless and backed by nothing more concrete than the market's confidence in the country, yet we can't live without it, so it's convenient to believe the lie.

Myths bind people together to achieve great things that can't be achieved by individuals. Binding myths are things like religion, nationality, cyber-currencies, trading blocs, corporations, political parties, even government itself - none are real and exist only in the minds of the believers for so long as it's convenient. For most, it's far come comfortable to live in the Matrix than to unplug themselves. The irony is that the myths are also the things that deeply divide people.

On reality; if a politician says; "The reality is....," the one thing you can guarantee is that the last thing they're talking about is an objective reality - they're talking about the myth.

I recommend reading a couple of books, both by Yuval Noah Harari; 'Sapiens' and 'Homo Deus'. The latter goes into great depth about convenient myths and where humanity is heading. I read Sapiens last week and am half way through Homo Deus.


  1. And as if on cue, Stirling is down this morning..

  2. Of course, I meant Sterling, not the Scottish town, that would be a different kind of disaster :)

  3. What this latest UK election highlighted was the high handed arrogance of Mrs May.

  4. When Mrs May's folk go to Europe to discuss Brexit her team will be known as the Conservative Unionist Negotiating Team !
    The first letters being those of a popular swear word....