Finally it must be recognized that lying is an essential ingredient of statecraft in these times. Governments lie in an attempt to uphold their legitimacy in the hearts of the people.
Democratic governments do not exist. Not in this world. Many attempts have been made, many faltering half-measures. All ultimately have failed to live up to the dream. But the people hold the dream of democracy close to their hearts. The people understand that systems of justice are a sham without democracy. Governments lie in order to create the illusion of democracy so that the people are more willing to comply. Governments create an illusion and then act in ways that advance the political and economic interests of a small group.
This is the political and economic reality of these times.
In the eyes of politicians the people are mere clay to be molded to be compliant to whatever governments do. The people do not understand political realities. The people are incapable of understanding what is in their best interests. The people are worn down by the day-to-day burdens of survival. They do not have the time nor the leisure to cast a critical eye upon the behaviors of their governments. This is exactly where governments want the people to be. Overburdened, distracted, desperate, voiceless, disorganized people are more easily led.
Such a phenomenon as an enlightened populace is possible. Such a phenomenon as a populace with enough leisure time, enough energy left over after the basic necessities of life are met, is quite possible. Already the modern world has the understanding of economic systems that tend to create a society in which the people are relatively content, enlightened and prosperous so that they can be engaged in the political, economic and social issues of the day. An equitable distribution of the wealth of a nation among all the people is a basic necessity of such a society. In such a society the idea of democracy has a chance of coming to fruition.
Why do we not see democratic governments thriving among the nations of the world? It is because, despite the flowery rhetoric about freedom and brotherhood, the world has not yet outgrown totalitarian political and economic ideologies.
Asserting that a totalitarian political and economic ideology still dominates our world suggests that there exists a ruling class. How can it be denied? From country to country one sees ruling families, juntas, crony capitalism, brutal regimes, fat oligarchs amidst vast squalor, domination of the political and economic mechanisms by small, wealthy, entrenched, ruthless, privileged groups.
This is the global ruling class. They are an elite club. They look out for each others’ political and economic interests. They lead double lives. They are all double agents. They pretend to serve one master but actually serve an entirely different master. They wear masks. In public they sing of the glories of the idea of democratic governance, of the march toward the liberation of the human race from tyranny and oppression. In private they ridicule such notions, despise the people and seek to manipulate the dumb masses to augment their own power, wealth and prestige.
These are the gods of the ruling class: power, wealth and prestige. They vie with each other to see who can gain the uppermost pinnacle of the global economic pyramid. They all individually seek to make of their own individual selves into a Sun God to whom all the masses bow in adoration.
The very last thing the ruling class wants is to create a political and economic landscape in which the people are well-educated, liberated from the day-to-day grind for survival and engaged in the issues related to their own governance. If the people are thriving, then too much of the wealth of the nations is being squandered. If the people are thriving, then they may grow into such engaged citizens that they challenge the political leadership, make them accountable, demand openness and honesty, infiltrate the entrenched political mechanisms with the attitudes and demands of a true democracy.
In order to preserve the interests of the ruling class the people must not thrive. The people must not have economic security, good schools, good health care, fair bargaining powers in the work place, clean, safe non-oppressive working conditions, strong healthy families, vibrant communities, equal justice for all. These characteristics of a good life, of a healthy, strong, unified, happy populace are well within reach. The resources are there in abundance. But it does not happen. The wealth of nations is sucked up to the top of the economic pyramid into the hands of the ruling class. They have no intention of sharing it with the dumb masses. The dumb masses must be kept in a state of want, desperation, subservience.
The dumb masses are the many. The ruling class is the few. How is it that the few so effectively dominates the many?
Those who accumulate the wealth, by whatever means, own everything and can bend the political and economic conditions to their advantage. They run governments from ‘behind the scenes’ by putting up the money and using political and social leverage to get people who do their bidding into the seats of power. Thereby do governments and supreme courts become ‘business friendly.’ Thereby economic mechanisms are created that willfully deprive the people of the fruits of their own labor, willfully extort those fruits in the name of offering the people the privilege of working for a pittance. The rulers rule! The rulers have a right to rule by the mere fact that they rule. Their wealth allows them to buy protection. They maintain standing armies of mercenaries. They create strong, well-equipped, obedient police forces to protect their properties, to protect the very idea of private property. Might makes right! The people are there to be manipulated, to be exploited, to be worked to death and then thrown in the garbage heap. The history books are filled with the false heroics and the false humanity of tyrants.
The ruling class is composed of individuals in all the countries of the world who get together in lush conference rooms and lay out in detail how they will manipulate the political realities so that the people are always afraid. Some enemy is about to ‘come over the wall’ to rape and pillage. A fearful populace is more likely to acquiesce to the implementation of draconian and costly policies which claim to be necessary to keep the people safe. The individuals that comprise the ruling class get together and lay out economic conditions that are widely advertised to be in the best interests of the people. But the inevitable outcome of these policies is that the people are not made safe nor do they prosper but rather are increasingly cowering, increasingly impoverished, increasingly subservient. The inevitable outcome is that those in power have even more control, more wealth, more undisputed dominance over the people.
This is the game plan!
Every human being who chooses to step into a position in the ruling class has chosen to wear a mask, to be a double agent, to say one thing and do something completely different, to live a lie. These human beings have agreed that in order to advance their own interests they must take on the mantle of ruthlessness. They must turn their hearts into stone. Their eyes must no longer reflect the light. They have agreed to offer their lives in service to a brutal machine – a government, to do everything in their power to advance the interests of that machine and to dispose of anyone who dares get in the way. They must lie continuously. They convince themselves that the atrocities that they perpetrate or condone are for the ‘greater good’ of the people, that the people are too innocent, too naive to understand, that they in the ruling class itself are the chosen ones to carry the heavy burden of leadership. For them democracy is an impossibility. As a form of governance democracy is ludicrous, laughable. But the game of democracy must be played on the surface of brute reality because the hearts of the people have been infected by the dream of democracy.
The people are like a powerful, slumbering dragon. Even as it slumbers this dragon is filled with a sense of injustice. None of the pomp and grandeur of the contemporary mechanisms of jurisprudence are able to cause it to be blinded to the pervasive, underlying injustice that prevails in the world. A small, seemingly insignificant event, some last straw like the imposition of harsh governmental austerity programs, might be the breeze that awakens the dragon. Once awakened it begins to unfold its wings and feels a hunger in its belly. One small act of courage, of standing up to the powers-that-be, can inspire other acts of courage. One brave individual like Rosa Parks may be looked upon as creating the spark that grows into a conflagration. But the conflagration is a cumulative mass movement.
In the process tyrants are brought low and the will of the people begins to assert itself. It is true that in this vulnerable time some new tyrant may come and take the place of the old tyrant. But the fear of this happening again cannot prevent new experimentation. What is life, after all? What is all this cosmic evolution if not one experiment laid on top of another experiment? At some point the people will hit the exact, right cord. The critical mass will have been attained. The collective consciousness will have arrived at that blessed plateau where justice ‘flows down like water’ and true brotherhood prevails.
This dream is embedded in the hearts of all humans and cannot die.