Monday, February 19, 2018

Mental Condition(ing) of Our Society

It occured to me it would be interesting to consider America today as a person and its relation to actual psychological conditions. The same can be applied to other dysfunctional countries. North Korea. Countries in Africa. Russia.

There is precedent for something like this in America. Corporations are "people" here, one of our more ludicrous decisions which has led to the demise of the middle class and an ever growing oligarch, draining money into the coffers of corporations and the wealthy, and has bastardized our election process.

Money, is a vote now. Offensive, and ridiculous. America has always been somewhat that way. In the beginning, only landowners could vote, and a few others specifically indicated. Not women. Not blacks, not many. America was founded to allow anyone to make a profit, to eliminate castes and a protected elite strata so the playing field is open to all.

That is America today. But it has been purposefully hampered. The way out of the pain of being an average American is multiple jobs, and to become wealthy enough that you are above the masses drowning in debt and a lack of funds to give them a decent living, healthcare, mental health care, and a secure future and retirement, and for their children to have a better life than they did.

Much of that has been retarded in this country. On purpose. Then they profess the way to fix that disparity is to do more of the same, assuring more of the same, against all logic. And the masses for the most part, certainly on the right, with the Republican party, have been delusionally convinced of it.
Art by Marvin Hayes
It is madness and it is making us mad. Someone posted this weekend, "boys are broken."

America, is broken. Functional, but in the wrong ways much of the time.

From that platform, we see America as having been a more or less (as much as a country can be) cohesive nation. Some of that from our ignorance of our own reality. Our ignorance of ourselves (the white nation ignorant of the human experience of the black nation, native Americans, Mexicans, immigrants in general, and so on).

As media and education, science and in our facing down and beginning to face down religion in a more enlightened and advanced environment, the complexity of responsibility has become more intricate and burdensome. Some (many?) cannot handle this. They want their old reality back. A dysfunctional reality but a familiar one to them. We have not been educated to understand we have to always change, and change is good, it should be good, we have to make it be good. And we're not too much of the time.

Instant media has magnified everything. For profit news has exaggerated the unimportant over that of the important, due in part to people's attention spans, lack of interest in reality, too frequent traumatic events and so much through overwork and underpay, we have a need for escape.

As we come to terms with things we have long been ignorant of, or simply ignored (and through that and the structures of society), we have even enabled some of the wrong things, as we try to find our lost selves, and wonder at our personality as a nation, in observing it splitting all around us. We continue to polarize, we continue to fracture. We choose opposing viewpoints and rationalize our goodness, sometimes leading us along the right path, sometimes down the darkness of the wrong path.
Art by Marvin Hayes
We are becoming schizophrenic, or at least schizophreniform in nature in going temporarily from insanity to insanity. We have a short memory, selective memory. Memory affected by media and politicians who don't want us to remember to make their life easier, to make them more money. We are frustrated, fearful, but traditionally we are Americans and leaders. So we demand we lead, even if and when we are simply too fragile to do so.

That leads at times to bravado, to over self assurance, even to delusions. All so well exemplified in the Republican party and its leader now, the foolishness of a President Donald Trump. It means we act on things we try to fix, but inappropriately, IF we even do act. Mass shootings, we do nothing? NOTHING is the answer? How can that be?

Turning Americans into poor, allowing the killing our children - Art by Marvin Hayes
We find we are failing at things (war on drugs, for instance) and we keep pushing those failed agendas, because they are familiar and we lack the knowledge or refused to find it, in order to move forward correctly albeit painfully. We avoid pain, which increasing our pain. Even though repeating actions while seeking new, varied and unachievable reactions, continues to fail over and over again.

And we keep moving forward(?) with our eyes wide shut, until we are lost. We choose the wrong leaders. Our leaders choose the wrong goals. Our chosen priorities are skewed, even diametrically opposed at times.

How can we stop this, fix this, become rational, sane, functional and productive again?

To paraphrase what my university psychology professor and primary adviser once said:

"Order your mind and you will order your environment. It works the other way, too. Start small. Act. Evoke change. Change is good. Try things and when they fail, try other things. Doing nothing is not the solution. Build on your building and finally you will realize one day, that you are there."

First, we all have to want to be whole again. Sanity will follow. We need to come together again and glue our fractures with the adherence of our recognition that we are all Americans and more importantly, we are all human beings.

And that's the rub, isn't it? How to get there. But we can, and if we wish it to be so, we will.

We are simply not there now. Not yet.


#America #GOP #realDonaldTrump is making us crazier along with his #Republican confused Congress and their at times ridiculous paradigms of how to govern.