The President of the United States takes an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. The People of the United States are domestic, better domesticated as the public. Domestic animals we love, we put in place of family, have instead of children; wild ones we hunt. In the political science of state, the people are a wild species of the public.
The State manages only slogans or platitudes in reference to the fundamentals of our humanity; this remains true in the marketing of government by its administrators, equal in every way to the marketing of big business in America. Madison Avenue was a bourgeois capitalist parallel of Soviet Propaganda; state propaganda in America, the runt of this litter. I wonder how many people who worked for the Nazis Ministry of Propaganda went to work for German Advertising after the war.
Intelligent assessments about anything are contrary to speaking about things in platitudes; the mind that forms or receives platitudes and the mind that thinks intelligently are mutually exclusive. But then platitudes are the mark of the political sophist, another phrase for politician, or lawyer, which is what almost all politicians have been before becoming holders of public office; that is, until our excessively framed notion that businessmen might make better politicians than politicians themselves. But one does not have to listen to politicians to assess intelligently how someone speaks in platitudes; you only have to listen to most people from the Soviet Union, or from anywhere else, actually; but from the Soviet Union will herein serve us well.
This Soviet citizen, this former Soviet citizen, is a particular example I like to hold up for scrutiny. It is here a unique mirror is held up to that peculiar species of political animal we like to refer to in hubris, American. In these “Russians,” we have a people who were supposedly educated above the rest of us here in America, as most native detractors from the United States like to agree with, but then we also have a people who will swear, en masse, that they were and are still savvy to how much propaganda they were fed in the Soviet Union, an amount only the rarest of former Soviets is ever aware of. Moreover, if their diction were ever analyzed closely, it would reveal the most grotesque patterns of totalitarian received ideas of anyone in the world. Was their access to information comparable to what we have here in the west, or more specifically the United States. I recall having told my wife once that it is not true that bad things cannot happen to people here because they do, the government, its administrators, its bureaucrats, other institutions of power, of money, of authority, all of them have at one time or another participated in some form of repression of some group somewhere in our country. Like elsewhere in the world, the United States government is not the friend of its people; its particular genius of governing, though, has been to be less the enemy of the people than governments elsewhere have been. With our government’s alignment with power, with money, that just might be waning. And with the President being, in all politeness, Blankfein’s bitch . . . do we imagine Obama has not sold the People down river–and yes, I do know from where I get my words.
What is also true about America is that here there are more stops, more impediments between the people and their harm; or so we used to assume. Once great harm has been done, there is more availability for the deed, not to be undone, but remedied. Now if Sartre’s maxim for the French in his “The Republic of Silence” has any validity, whereby the French were never freer than when living under the Nazis occupation, then an inverse of this freer Frenchman under the Nazis might also have some validity. A like analogy could be held for Soviet Russians, as I have met many from the former Republics of the Soviet Union who have a particularly existential sense of freedom. Likewise, an inverse analogy might be drawn where we could say that the kind of society we have in America just might breed the democratic slave, especially when other institutions of society are analyzed, particularly the role of media in our political and social life. Nonetheless, was there ever a story line other than the official one of state? Pravda did not report auto accidents for decades. But then watching the media in the role of the Obama presidency has left wondering just how managed by power elites and moneyed elites our alleged free press is.
Soviet education though was an especially subscribed education, filled with redundancy, especially in the apolitical areas of math and the sciences, except biology, of course, which always gets appropriated, much as psychology seems always to be appropriated by states in their own interest. The inquiries into biology and psychology were detoured repeatedly by a state that used both sciences in its revolutionary programmatic, or in lip service of revolutionary programmatics that were in turn all and only about hegemony and power for those fortunate enough to be part of the ruling oligarchy. No one ever killed more scientists, especially biologists than did the Soviet Union, that is, in the entire history of the world. I cannot balance the scales of justice between the Soviet Union and the United States; and the persistence of Soviet life as status quo only goes to securing in my appraisal of Soviet mentality a more propagandized set of publicans in service of the Soviet state. Perhaps Sartre’s famous maxim in “The Republic of Silence” is valid for short time periods of occupation.
This “educated Russian” was a perfect example of state molded man in service of that state, a man as one of the people transformed in the image of the public. I listen to the dogmas and programmatic that passes for education from many of our American college educated today and see the same reflexes . . . In this Soviet citizen, we see the Publican man at his most transformative, least a member of a People because in all “People’s Republics” the People disappear. The Soviet citizen has a lot in common with the figure of the Golem, out yiddish folk-lore. But a figure who lacked the courage of Victor Frankenstein’s monster . . . I can’t tell you how many Jewish refugees from the Soviet Union insist that they had to be Communists to keep their job, a choice they made but insist they could not have not made.
I’ve never met more completely formed members of the status quo, not even here in the United States, although here you will find a more nearly identical replication of this state formed being, especially in those who pride themselves at being the most individualized, many among the college educated as well as almost all among the lumpen proletariat or the dregs of the poor–only the latter two representing a policy flip side to the supposedly more sensitive, read, intelligent, members of our liberally educated university students.
Moreover, Americans are fast becoming like their Soviet comrades in the decline of liberty,–no one more so than the most politically correct academics in our colleges. There were and probably still are no two states who existed in this categorical flip of the coin as did the U.S.S.R. and the U.S. This is neither new nor unique, but a truth we seem willing to turn away from.
So in this adherence to the dogmas of state, one’s humanity is reduced. In being a member of the state institution of the Public, and this Public is an institution of the state, one relinquishes one’s role as a member of the People, something I’ve gone on about in more than one essay herein. In this abdication, there is a denouncement of one’s fundamental and natural humanity, for a more highly circumscribed participation as state automaton, a humanoid in its performance as one of the Public, a hybrid of human, you could say, one whose politicized action is as sterile as he is, as sterile as many a hybrid.
The political is the greatest effort at dominating the People no matter what cloak or banner is worn or flown. Publicans are the mules of the state, and like mules in nature, Publicans are sterile. But this sterility does not keep the Mule from trying to mate. Mules have a sex drive; they are sterile not impotent. Their gratification is like our Publican need for gratification now, now, now.