“[I]t is much safer to be feared than loved because ...love is preserved by the link of obligation which, owing to the baseness of men, is broken at every opportunity for their advantage; but fear preserves you by a dread of punishment which never fails.”
― Niccolò Machiavelli, The Prince
Yes, it's true. The government near you is doing everything it can to make you afraid, despite any and all rhetoric to the contrary.
Oh, sure, the so-called leaders pose and puff about 'safety' and 'security', but if they actually delivered on it, they would, according to Machiavelli, lose power.
All power is based on fear. The power of religion is that it promises a way to not get thrown in Hell. The power of government is that it promises to not let boogie men harm you and your family. By extension, both must conjure up those things which are most feared in order to demonstrate their power to protect us.
Religions practice exorcism. They create demons out of common afflictions and then 'cure' us of the demons through magic incantations and arcane rituals. In reality though, it is all pomp and circumstance to produce fear.
By the same token, governments conjure up threats, whether they are physical or, as in the case of the US in the 50s, just imaginary bugaboos hiding under every rock. Nowadays, it's not the Commies, but the Jihadists. If that doesn't work, there are more esoteric threats, such as comets and meteors or alien invasions.
Regardless of what the perceived threat is, the whole thing is a Theater of Fear. It is all a giant, real-life horror movie in which you never really see the monster, it's all just shadows and sounds and scary music.
"A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people."
-- John F. Kennedy
It has been my experience that people who seek political power are insecure little weasels who are so terrified that their beliefs are wrong that they must impose them on everyone in order to feel secure. In other words, governments are not about making us feel secure, they are about making the power-mongers feel safe. These small little minds are so paranoid that they must make the entire society equally as paranoid to alleviate their fear that they are abnormal. Think about it...it's true.
Don't we all seek people of like mind in order to make ourselves feel secure in our beliefs and mind-sets? Politicians are the same as you and me, with one important difference - they want to create fearful, paranoid, insecure people in order to justify their own fears. And in creating them, they grant themselves the power to lead all the loonies in the booby hatch.
Think about all the tax money stolen from your productive labor. In most cases, a full third to half of the income earned by each person reading this column is vanished into a bureaucratic black hole. And what do you get in return? Brain mapping projects, militaries and more politicians.
And what does all that achieve? Paranoia, enemies and more fear.
In other words, we are forced at gun point and by threat of imprisonment to pay for systems that do nothing more than create the environments that justify the existence of governments. It is a closed loop of fear that keeps us in line through the use of fear to protect us from fear. Makes perfect sense, right?
Think about it: behind every issue in the public discourse that the government offers a 'solution' to, and behind it you will find fear. Fear of the unknown, strangers, pain, attack, poverty, and most especially death. It is all fear.
Governments exploit fear in order to keep us in line. The ultimate absurdity is that governments say they will protect us from fear, but then use fear to keep us in line. If we don't follow the rigid guidelines set out for us by our 'leaders', then be afraid of retaliation in the form of incarceration, impoverishment and death. In other words, we have another causal loop: using fear to make us believe that we can be protected from fear.
Perhaps Franklin D. Roosevelt said it best, "We have nothing to fear, but fear itself." Ironic words coming from a man who used fear to remake an entire society from independent and self-reliant, to government slaves and dependents.
At the base of all power is the fear of death. It is only by eliminating this fear that we can truly be free. That is the ultimate message of all true religions: there is no death and so nothing to fear. Though certainly that message has been obfuscated by the invention of eternal damnation and shadowy demons. They need fear to keep the tithes coming, after all.
It is the elimination of the fear of death that governments and power-seekers fear the most. Without that fear, we the people are ungovernable. They have no tools to control us. This is the motivation behind mapping the human brain, or the war on drugs/terror/poverty/etc. 'They' must keep us afraid or face their own worst fear: lack of control over their environment.
In the end, we can conquer the PTB by simply seeing them for what they are: small, fearful minds who seek to bring us all down to their level in order to justify their own fears.
And we can conquer all fear by simply realizing that we are immortal beings, in one form or another. On the most basic level, the laws of physics demand that the matter and energy that defines our selves must go one forever. On a higher level, consciousness is something far greater than the sum of our three-dimensional, physical world.
In either case, we have already conquered death. Now it remains to conquer the fear and remove the means by which we are enslaved.
Map way, Big O.