Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Campaign, "The Matrix," and the GOP Offensive Against Truth

I think this is terrific!

John Aloysius Farrell

[...] The ruling white-skinned patrimony creates myths that fit its view of the world and justify its barbarous behavior. Society exists in a kind of consensual mass hallucination.

("Have you ever had a dream, Neo, that you were so sure was real?")

Startlingly, in American politics it's the by-gosh, just-folks Republican Party that has taken the postmodern theory of the French elites to heart and pushed it to its soulless, cynical limits. We're seeing that in the McCain campaign's current disregard for "truth."

In the last few weeks, various news organizations and academic "truth squads" have targeted many of McCain's pronouncements as bald-faced lies. The candidate and his advisers have shrugged, and McCain and his commercials have blithely continued to repeat the falsehoods. He is betting that the voters are too cynical to care.

It is, perhaps, no accident that Republican operatives derisively call Obama "the One." What is their "empire" to "history's actors" but a low-tech Matrix?

("We've had our eye on you for some time now, Mr. Anderson.")

And, when you think about it, they are right. The Matrix—written and filmed with foresight in 1999—is not a bad metaphor for this election year. Its creators, the Wachowski brothers, were obviously influenced by postmodern theory and the implications of constructed truths.

("I know you're out there...I know that you're afraid...You're afraid of change.")

If Obama is the One, then I guess McCain is Agent Smith.

But what about the rest of us—we saps out here in the reality-based community?

("I don't know the future. I didn't come here to tell you how this is going to end. I came here to tell you how it's going to begin.... I'm going to show these people what you don't want them to see. I'm going to show them a world...without you. A world without rules and controls, without borders or boundaries. A world where anything is possible.")

In 50 days, will we take the red pill, or the blue one?


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