The primary obstacle in getting people to realize that they are being propagandized by our rulers is their unquestioned assumption that if there were a mass-scale narrative management operation geared at manufacturing consent for the status quo, they would have heard about it in the news or learned about it in school.
And, of course, they would not have, because both the plutocratic media and the modern schooling system are designed to indoctrinate people into accepting the status quo. From the time we are children our minds are deliberately and systematically warped to psychologically align us with the interests of the ruling class, and then we are passed on to the news media to ensure that we are continually shaped and reshaped in real time throughout our adult lives based on the specific needs of the oligarchic empire from year to year. A brainwashing institution is never going to teach you to be skeptical of their brainwashing.
Our indoctrination into the establishment worldview is not just in training us to espouse certain beliefs and think a certain way, it’s in training us to look to the sources of our indoctrination for guidance throughout our lives. What do we do when we are unsure about something, class? That’s right, we go to reliable, authoritative sources like The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, and any other outlet that has consistently supported every war we’ve ever been deceived into by our rulers.
Our indoctrination isn’t just in what to think, it’s in how to think.
This is the first and foremost reason why it’s so difficult to get people to realize that they have been lied to about the world and the way it works. You’re not just arguing against their perceptions, you’re arguing against their means of perception itself. You’re arguing against the very system they have used since they were young to orient themselves to an understanding of truth and reality.
If you are looking at a given facet of the oligarchic empire through a means of perception which for example takes it as a given that the news man would never lie to you and anyone who says otherwise is a Russian agent or crazy conspiracy theorist, there’s no way you’re going to be able to see that facet clearly. If someone suggests that you read an article by The Grayzone or Glenn Greenwald challenging your perspective, just their doing that will look like evidence that they are wrong, in the same way someone telling a devout Christian to read the Satanic Bible would be taken as evidence that they are evil.
It’s hard to get someone to see the flaws in their means of perception for the same reason you can’t get someone to directly look at their own eye: you can’t directly perceive the means by which you are perceiving. If I have “Anyone who doesn’t trust The New York Times is a liar” built into the means of perception that I have been trained to utilize, you’re going to have a very difficult time getting me to be skeptical about anything The New York Times has reported, and an even harder time getting me to be skeptical of the outlet itself. This will remain the case for as long as I am peering through that means of perception.
So what can we do? How can we ever hope to awaken people to the fact that an ecocidal, omnicidal oligarchic empire is driving us toward disaster while singing us to sleep using propaganda lullabies?
Well, we can create glitches in the matrix. We can draw as much attention as possible to the lies we’ve all been told and create enough dissonance with their means of perception that they begin wondering if something is wrong with the goggles they’ve been peering through. If you wear glasses and begin noticing strands of code running down your field of vision here and there, your first instinct might be to take off your glasses and examine if there is something wrong with them. Once you’ve got them examining and questioning their means of perception itself, there’s a chance that they may fall through that gap and wake up from the matrix.
As we would do if we were trapped in a collapsed tunnel, we start working on moving the loose rocks first. We help share truth with people who are close to our own level of understanding, who are on the cusp of awakening to how pervasively we’ve been lied to all our lives. The more awakening we can facilitate on the periphery, the looser the more stubbornly stuck pieces of rubble will become. Eventually they will begin noticing matrix code streaming down the periphery of their vision as a critical mass of perceivers begin drawing attention to the way we’ve all been deceived, and then even the most tightly wedged-in obstacles will begin to get some wiggle room.
All positive change in human behavior is the result of an increase in awareness, whether you’re talking about recovering from substance abuse, abandoning self-destructive patterns, ending racism and bigotry, or ending an oligarchic empire. Once the underlying sources of an unwholesome behavior dynamic have been sufficiently perceived, there’s a movement from dysfunction to health.
That’s the only path to a healthy world: getting enough people to perceive enough truth with enough clarity. Until that happens real change is impossible. After that happens real change is inevitable.
Republished from CaitlinJohnstone.com with permission