Here's my take on our situation. I'd be curious to hear the thoughts of others.
Every living thing has an instinct for self-preservation. However, when groups of things gather into a system – a colony of bees, a pack of wolves, a civilization – their instincts tell them that survival of the system is more important than their own welfare.
Of all living things, only human beings have the ability to choose which systems to belong to. You might be willing to undergo hardship in the service of your country, or your faith, or your family … But you are substantially less likely to do so for someone else’s country, or faith, or family.
Therefore, as far as human systems are concerned, it’s a popularity contest. Raw numbers are important, but more important is buy-in. The company with the most loyal customers gains market share. The political party with the most fervent supporters wins elections. The religion with the most devout believers spreads its message the farthest.
And the civilization with the most ardent population will be the richest and most powerful in the world. It will dominate, and it will survive. If conspiracies are hatched, wars are waged, and terrible crimes are committed, it is because the instinct of every organism is to participate in and protect the system of which it is a part.
The system will grow: not with careful strategy and consideration, but by accretion. Whatever sticks to it becomes part of it. A law does not work as intended, but it is part of the system, so it can not be changed. A business promises one thing and delivers another, but it is part of the system, so it is not accountable. A court promises justice and fails to deliver it, but it is part of the system, so it can not be questioned. A prison built to rehabilitate criminals turns nonviolent offenders into violent ones, but it is part of the system, so no alternative will be considered.
As the system grows in this way, it becomes less effective. Like an addict who can not think past the next fix, the system will adopt increasingly desperate measures to perpetuate itself. Borrow money to grow, and then borrow money to pay the interest on those loans, then keep on borrowing. It can’t work forever, but a system can not conceive of “forever.”
If the system feels threatened, it will find enemies within; foreigners, minorities – people whose customs or appearance suggest that they are different, other, not really part of the system, and therefore not worthy of its protection. And it will devour them.
Like a mob, capable of committing atrocities none of its members would do alone, a system will commit genocide, wage wars, and destroy the Earth itself in an attempt to survive.
The system is the synthesis of big government and big business that controls every aspect of our lives. We live and die at its whim.
How then, do we escape? Or, more importantly, how do we overcome it? Is there a strategy for emancipation?