Not Just Sick


I’ve been taking part in an Endgame reading and discussion group over at the Derrick Jensen Forums. The classes are led by the author himself, so it’s a great experience.

We’ve been going through the chapters about two at a time, and pondering questions which Derrick asks about them. I’m finding my reaction to having the proofs that this society is insane paraded before me is more analytical than when I first read this important book (two books, actually, but Vol 1 is the heavier-hitter from a neophyte point of view).

Don’t get me wrong – I’m still angry as all hel that we’ve allowed this destructive, deathly culture to prosper and dominate. I’m just in a better position to look more closely at the signs of this sick society.

“What are the signs of a sick society?” Dr. Baldwin asks Friday. The last and most telling sign, in Heinlein’s opinion, is a loss of good manners. That the society exhibiting such a loss feels that this is a sign of its strength is moreover the sign of a dying society.

I offer Heinlein’s view as an example of one person’s opinion.

As we read in Endgame, the producer Brian de Palma, upon being criticised for putting females in positions of mortal peril in all his movies, opines that this is merely ‘..a genre convention..’, somewhat akin to using violins when people fall in love.

Let me get this straight Mr. de Palma – chopping up the female body in extremely violent scenes is a genre convention? What sick, leprosy-ridden genre are we talking about here then? Oh yes, snuff flicks.

If the public appetite for such fare does not start you thinking there’s something wrong here, well – there’s something wrong, here.

So I’m on the highway this morning, predawn, a very good time for thinking, and I’m turning over a couple of examples I’ve bumped my nose against recently that point to the ill health of this culture.

Firstly, I recall a couple of days ago seeing a beautiful young woman who had called in to our offices. She was, I was told, a “Life Coach”.

What the fuck?

We’ve actually reached the point where we’re willing to pay people quite a lot of money to teach us how to live? I don’t think I need to elaborate, except to note this – said Life Coach is the mother of 6 offspring.

The other example I had in mind was Viagra. I’m not sure that any but a sick society would give so much hype, so much money, and make quite so much use of an expensive blue pill which allows men to get their erections back.

I suppose there must not be enough unnecessary death and suffering on this globe after all, if we can afford to chase the maintaining of the male organ in a state of uprightness so seriously.

There are many signs that this society is sick. When I turn them over for more than half an hour in my mind I reach the same conclusion every time:

Not just sick, but insane.

Premise Ten: The culture as a whole and most of its members are insane. The culture is driven by a death urge, an urge to destroy life.

Pic: Dave Ehlen

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8 responses to “Not Just Sick

  1. Insane is the correct word. Mass delusion also comes to mind.The trick for me, lies in sitting outside the madness, while partaking of every day life. When you’re aware, it’s so much harder to reconcile experience with rational thought.peace

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  2. Watching it all and trying not to retch as a woman in NYC waited 24 hours in a psychiatric hospital waiting room only to fall down, convulse and die with not a soul bothering to check her dead body for over an hour. Sick, sick, fucking sick. You are so right.

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  3. Yes, and it’s happened to me, too.Not dead but dying -of alcohol poisoning – in a police station.I was dumped there and no one even spoke to me for hours.I guess I can understand that, in one part of me which is still sick itself.But another part of me argues that you don’t just leave a woman dying on the public benches, when there are half a dozen of you just standing around chatting.Love,Terri

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  4. if we can afford to chase the maintaining of the male organ in a state of uprightness so seriously.Patriarchy. You’re soaking in it. What could be “more” important in a patriarchy? Absolutely nothing. Jensen’s in my will; that’s how important I think he is.

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  5. Yeah – don’t I know it! Soaking in patriarchy indeed. To the point we often don’t even see it anymore.What a good idea, putting Derrick Jensen in the will – I’ll have to consider that, too.Love,Terri

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  6. Terri – i listened to “The king will come” last night, and gave you a big friendly thought ;-)One of my favourite live albums, and always gets me in a good mood.peace

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