October 13, 2012

Propaganda and Control: Brezezinski

1. Propaganda and Control: Brezezinski
2. My eye problems


This is about propaganda and control, with a quite amazing quotation from 1968: As the Dutch saying has it:

    In het heden ligt het verleden,      In the present is the past
    In het nu wat worden zal              In the now what will be

Judge for yourself:

1. Propaganda and Control: Brezezinski

The best book I've read about the French student revolt of May 1968, that I have seen myself in Paris, is by Stephen Spender: "The Year of The Young Rebels". MY copy is from May 1969, in Vintage Books., Library of Congtress Card Nr. 78-78801.

It is interesting for many reasons, and one is the following  rather amazing quotation, especially in view of what has been happening lately with civil liberties.

Note that the following was published in 1969 - and I copy with line breaks and all:
p. 153

The idea of the technotronic society seems to be under the
auspices of Zbigniev Brezezinski, until recently a member of
the Policy Planning Staff of the State Department, and now
Director of the Research Institute of Communist Affairs at
Columbia University. The 'technotronic society' seems to be the
exact opposite of the society of 'spontaneity' demanded by
revolutionary students, who Mr Brezezinskin evidently regards
as pathetic throw-backs, survivors of Romantic days, forlornly
playing out anachronistic roles: (1)

Our society is leaving the phase of spontaneity and is entering a
self-conscious state; ceasing to be an industrial society, its is being shaped to an ever-increasing extent by technology and electronics,
        (1) New Republic, 13 December 1967


and thus becoming the first technotronic society. This is at least in part
the cause for much of the current tensions and violence, and largely the reason why events in America today do not fit established categories of analysis.

Mr Brzezinski realises that the technotronic society fills some
people with uneasiness (in this respect the reactionaries and the
revolutionaries are as one).
   However Mr Brezezinski does not expect that the Luddite
lovers of freedom and anarchy will seriously obstruct the new
order. For one thing, 'it will soon be possible to assert almost
continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain  up-to-
date, complete files, containing even personal information
about the health and personal behaviour of the citizen, in
addition to the more customary data.' Moreover it will be
possible to anticipate and plan to meet any uprisings in the
future. The police will even be able to forecast crises before the
rioters themselves are conscious of wanting them.

See e.g. my
Crisis:  Big Brother is watching you written 44 years later. And note that Mr Brezezinski is still alive, and may still be advising the powers that be. The Wikipedia article on him is quite interesting and long, and also contains this quote:
"The technetronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities." – Between Two Ages: America’s Role in the Technetronic Era, 1970
I quote from my Crisis:  Big Brother is watching you written in May 2012. The video link that  follows is well worth watching:

Let me take up the the theme of Crisis again, of which the last in the series, that runs on my site since September 2008, was on April 4 2012, with the not so optimistic title Crisis: The age of ignorance and degeneracy - but then that's what the times are like, and the foundations for that were laid one or two generations ago, and we are now living in the times these have come to fruition.

And there is more cause for serious worries: In the United States the outlines of a police-state seem to be in the making. Here are The Young Turks (<-Wikipedia link):

       Is The Government Spying On You? FISA continues
      (Youtube 6.15 min)

The brief answer is: Yes, and it is quite frightening. I quote from the website of The Young Turks:

"The Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday approved the extension of legislation that authorized a sweeping warrantless wiretapping program started under the Bush Administration. The FISA Amendments Act of 2008 gave the government broad powers to monitor international phone calls and emails, and granted legal immunity to telecommunication companies that had participated in the wiretapping program before 2008. The law was set to expire in 2012, but the Senate bill — passed by a 13-2 vote in the committee — would extend the law for another five years...Sens. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Mark Udall (D-CO) both opposed the extension of the law. The two senators had asked James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, to disclose the number of people whose communications were reviewed by government agents, and whether or not the law had been used to collect communications of law abiding Americans...".

What is even more frightening is that so few find this frightening, which also motivated my Machiavellian quote. You'll find The Prince on my site, with my remarks, and there is also the often downloaded Introduction to Politics, which is an annotated booklist of fine texts on the subject.

Then again, I wouldn want to leave you without some good cheer to the effect that, realistically considered, it has almost never been better:

    "Presque toute l'Histoire n'est qu'une suite d'horreurs."

2. My eye problems

My eye problems are again a bit less, as I am very glad to be able to remark, even if my eyes still  are far from well - and I mention this because it is like having abrasions for eyes: "ogen als schaafwonden" in Dutch - and because that's why I use the present color scheme in my NOTEBOOK, and indeed started that item.

Maarten Maartensz

P.S. My eye problems

                  PS: Any necessary corrections have to be made later.