Information Society "postmodernity"
One of the first modern authors who paid attention to the formation of a new type of society was the French philosopher Jean-François Liotard. In his work “The State of Postmodern,” Liotard introduced the concept of “post-modernity,” characterized by: 1) a gradual “erosion” of established theories and ideologies that claimed universality in the perception of the world and its change (this includes the entire spectrum of influential political ideologies of an industrial society - communism and anarchism to fascism and nazism); 2) statement of pluralism, "plurality", as the defining characteristics of modern society. However, the fiasco of ideologies, “great narratives,” or metanarratives, as Lyotard called them, did not affect the concept of democracy. It was democracy that remained the only “great narration”, the truth of which is not doubted by the entire Western world, and after it those countries that follow in the wake of Western politics, not daring to embark on the path of confrontation and turn into political outcasts. Democracy in its Western sense is the main myth of modern times. None of the modern political figures, with the exception of representatives of radical movements, does not subject the idea of democracy to conceptual criticism. At the same time, the very content of the concept of “democracy” is today emasculated and transformed. Democracy is no longer the power of the people, but a liberal-bureaucratic dictatorship that takes on more and more totalitarian features in the United States and in Western Europe, not to mention the Western satellites in the “third world” or in the post-Soviet space. Meanwhile, the democracy identified today with liberalism is by no means reduced to it. Stories there are many examples of democratic societies outside of Western culture - from Veliky Novgorod and Pskov to Africa. It is difficult to disagree with the Russian philosopher K.Yu. Reznikov, who emphasizes that "democracy, presented by the United States and Europe as a model of the modern world, is the central ideological myth of the West, designed to control their own peoples and subordinate the peoples of other civilizations, in particular, the peoples of Russia" (quoted by .Y. Myths about democracy as weapon against Russia // http://avkrasn.ru/article-257.html).
Control replaces discipline
Over the past few decades, Russian society has been hammered into the idea that democracy is a political reality in the West, that Russia should develop only along the lines of Western states, and otherwise it will face a catastrophe. The West represented by controlled propagandists managed to impose the myth of democracy and make even opponents critical of the United States and Europe to defend and defend themselves. The assertion of the myth of democracy was accompanied by the substitution of notions - the Anglo-American version of liberalism is presented as the only ideological current, in the extreme case it is diluted with moderate socialist rhetoric of the social democratic parties of Europe, which have long turned into advocates of such dubious "freedoms" as gay marriage, multiculturalism, tolerance. Liberal authors like to blame all non-Western societies for anti-democracy, portraying them exclusively as anti-people bloody dictatorships. At the same time, it was the West that became the testing ground on which the latest and, as practice showed, very effective technologies for managing mass consciousness and behavior, were tested. If before the state ruled on the basis of violent methods, and the main instruments of influence on the masses were repressive institutions - the court, police, army, special services, by the end of the 20th century. the usual methods of control were superseded by the technologies of manipulation of consciousness.
Another famous French philosopher of the twentieth century, Gilles Deleuze, rightly remarked that in the modern world the “disciplinary society” characterized by power over the body was gradually superseded by the “control society” based on the power over consciousness. Information technologies in the manipulation of people's minds play a key role, whereas direct violence has faded into the background and is used only against those who do not give in to manipulation, refuses to play according to predetermined rules. If before the state wanted to control the economic and political spheres of human activity, then today it is more and more actively invading the personal plane. Stalinists and Islamic fundamentalists were accused of subordinating personal to public, but modern Western countries are characterized by such a level of interference in the private life of people and families, which is far from any totalitarian regime of the past. “Soft” technologies of mind manipulation, in contrast to rigid disciplinary methods, are all-pervasive and omnipresent. On the one hand, with the help of myths and stereotypes replicated by the media, modern states and supranational forces (corporations) can control the minds of people, on the other hand, information and communication technologies make it possible to very effectively monitor people and their behavior. Take at least the same social networks that have played a decisive role in the preparation of many “orange revolutions”, fulfilling the functions of searching for and consolidating supporters, spreading myths, and distorting information. Modern man is much more - a slave of myths and stereotypes than a man of the past. The latter, at least, was restrained by religion and ideology, the traditional moral and ethical principles that were common to almost all of humanity. It is not by chance that the philosopher Serge Moscovici defines modern democracy as the “age of crowds” in which external submission is repressed by internal submission, and domination acquires an invisible character and turns into dominance over reason. But the one who owns the mind of a person can control his behavior. Events in Ukraine and in Syria, in Libya and Iraq, Yemen and Tunisia are a good example.
Mass media is a serious weapon
The media have become in modern conditions one of the key instruments of political influence and even the management of society. Information has become the main product, and the media - the main translator of myths. In principle, the media today play the role of not only preachers, but also inquisitors, determining the fate of specific people and groups of people, and sometimes - of entire states. It is they who select, dispense and transmit the bulk of information and disinformation, influencing the assessment of the socio-political reality in the modern world. The direction of the political development of modern society depends largely on who controls the media. The myths that are broadcast by the media are transformed into tools of political mobilization. Social energy finds its outburst in riots and unrest, revolutions and wars, which in modern society are ignited, first of all, with the help of informational influence on people. It is the mass media that today creates a positive image of a political leader or a political party, or, on the contrary, they are being discredited. As the late Boris Berezovsky once said, “give me one channel and I will make a chair president of the country”. In his words, despite the obvious bravado, there was a certain amount of truth - the political future of not only individual politicians, but also entire government entities depends on the media today.
If the "world" (read - western) media begin to accuse one or another state of the undemocratic political regime, then in modern conditions this is actually a warning. The next step could well be the “people's revolution” and the “peacekeeping operation” of the armed forces of the United States and other NATO countries that is being carried out to support it. But an objective presentation of information will not have the effect of controlling the consciousness and behavior of the masses, which is why the media use developed manipulation technologies. The Russian philosopher Sergey Kara-Murza writes that “having plunged a person into the stream of“ always urgent ”messages, the media broke the“ chain of times ”, created a completely new type of time - the time of the performance” (Quoted from: Kara-Murza SG, Manipulation of Consciousness M., 2004.). In fact, modernity is an imaginary world, which, at the same time, is presented in the media as a mosaic. The mosaic way of transmitting information prevents the development of the ability of the viewer or reader to analyze current events, leaving the latter only in the grip of emotions formed by brief news messages, as a rule - with the corresponding illustrations or video sequence. As a result of a mosaic of information, the main world events are perceived by most people fragmentarily. Conflicting ideas about one and the same event, which are formed as a result of the special manipulative influence of the media, can coexist.
For example, the assertion of the universal truth of "democracy" (in its American sense), multiculturalism, and tolerance is based on the regular reproduction of the image of the enemy. Most often, this enemy proclaims another political regime outside the western world, which does not satisfy, for whatever reason, the interests of the United States and its European satellites. And even those regimes that are trying to normalize relations with the West, but at the same time retain a certain ideological and practical autonomy, are not immune from such a turn of events. A typical example is the tragedy of Libya. After all, over the last years of his reign, Muammar Gaddafi established fairly good relations with the European Union countries, including Italy and France, and normalized relations with the United States, which for decades were considered the main enemy of the Libyan Jamahiriya. What came of this convergence is well known to all. There is a substitution and the concept of "peacemaking". Western media introduced the term “peace enforcement”, originally used by the American political and military leadership. As a result of the "peacekeeping" activities of the United States and NATO, tens of thousands of innocent people perish, the total destruction of the economic and social infrastructure of entire countries is carried out, which then turn into territories covered by civil wars without normal centralized control. As a result of the "peacekeeping" activities of the USA and NATO in Eastern Europe (Yugoslavia), Asia (Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq), Africa (Libya, Mali, Somalia), many times more people were killed than in the entire history of the activities of radical terrorist organizations that today served as one of the main threats to the “world order”. But the armed aggression of the United States and NATO is viewed by the population of states under Western ideological influence, if not with approval, then with understanding. Of course, there are manifestations of anti-American sentiment everywhere, but the manipulative activity of the media turns the anti-imperialist activity of the population into the lot of marginal political groups. The opponents of American military intervention in the affairs of sovereign states are labeled as “terrorists”, “fascists”, “opponents of democracy”, and the possibility of applying a variety of repressive methods of influence against them is not excluded. Needless to say, such regimes as Saudi Arabia or Qatar, where feudal and medieval orders still dominate, do not raise questions among supporters of “democracy,” while the secular regime of Assad is positioned as a brutal totalitarian dictatorship.
"Democracy" on American bayonets
Today, the idea of democracy is associated with Anglo-Saxon cultural and political superiority, and the apology of the American model of social and political system goes so far that the United States is defined as the heir to the ancient Greek polis democracy and the main carrier of humanistic and democratic cultural values. Although in this comparison, in addition to political bravado, there is a rational grain. After all, the Greek polis states were “democratic” only for their citizens, democracy did not spread to the rest of the world. Accordingly, the United States acts today as a world “citizen”, while the countries of the world that do not accept the American model turn out to be “non-citizens”, virtually deprived of their rights and freedoms. Armed operations undertaken by the United States and NATO are carried out exclusively in the interests of the United States, regardless of how events are evaluated by other countries of the world. When the United States and NATO attacked Libya, almost all African states, a number of countries in Latin America and Asia, Russia and several other post-Soviet republics made a categorical condemnation of Washington’s policies. But no reaction to global discontent from the United States followed. The United States and its European allies continued military operations against the Libyan people and eventually turned the once flourishing Libyan state into a desert worn out by constant war. Tens of thousands of Libyans died, another tens of thousands were forced to leave their home country, fleeing from the horrors of war, and then from the negative consequences for the economy caused by the war. It is the aggressive policy of the United States in the Middle East and North Africa that is one of the main reasons for the massive influx of refugees to European countries.
“Establishing democracy” in Libya is far from a single example of American armed aggression against the sovereign states of the world. As a result of American "peacekeeping", Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria were completely immersed in the abyss of civil wars. In Syria, with Russian support, the regime of Bashar al-Assad is maintained, but the politically and economically stable country that existed before the notorious “Arab Spring” is no longer there. Moreover, a new dangerous political player appeared in the Middle East - the Islamic State, the emergence of which is also a direct result of the policy pursued in the region by the United States and its satellites, the countries of the Persian Gulf and Europe. As a result of the bloody war unleashed by religious fanatics, the large territories of Iraq and Syria, once strong and stable states that tried to prevent extremism on their territory, came under their control. The consequence of the conflict in Syria and Iraq was the emergence of about four million refugees who are now breaking through to European countries, causing a real panic in the European Union. Germany, France, Italy and other European countries do not know what to do with the huge number of refugees from the Middle East. A quota system has already been introduced, according to which every European country that is a member of the European Union must accept a certain number of Middle Eastern and African refugees. Meanwhile, this decision has caused a negative reaction from a number of countries in Eastern Europe, who really do not want the presence of foreign cultural and foreign ethnic refugees on their territory. Meanwhile, with the help of mass media, the blame for the influx of refugees in Europe ... lies on Russia. Allegedly, it is Russia that is to blame for supporting the Bashar Assad regime, which is the cause of civil war in Syria and people are forced to flee to Europe. About the aggressive policy of the United States - not a word.
Falsifying history and political upheavals
In 2014-2015 A similar model of manipulation of public consciousness is used in Ukraine. As a matter of fact, the overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovych and the establishment of the openly pro-American and absolutely politically independent regime of Poroshenko-Yatsenyuk-Turchinov was the result not so much of the socio-economic problems faced by post-Soviet Ukraine as of a long manipulative effect on the consciousness of a significant part of Ukrainian citizens. In the events in Ukraine, the most obvious is the role of myths in fueling social and political conflicts, primarily because Ukraine is very close to Russia. The general history, culture, religion, linguistic proximity - all these factors could not be ignored in the incitement of a civil war in Ukraine. The main goal of the West in these conditions was to separate Ukraine from Russia, not only from Putin’s Russia, but also from Russia as a whole, from the “Russian world,” uniting Russian-speaking and Slavic-speaking communities in the post-Soviet space. To this end, numerous myths have been thrown into the mass consciousness of Ukrainians with the help of mass media funded by the US and the European Union, declaring a special historical path of Ukrainians. Ukrainians were proclaimed bearers of the traditions of democracy (as without it - the main fetish of modernity), and the Russians, respectively, the imperialists and the bearers of the "eastern", "Tatar-Mongolian" civilization. These ideas are promoted in the Ukrainian nationalist press and today millions of citizens of Ukraine, including ethnic Russians in their origin, are actually “zombied” by the propaganda of the Kiev regime and believe in the most ridiculous myths broadcast by the media. In the eyes of cultured people turned into evil "lumpen", obsessed with bloodlust and ready to go to any bloodshed, any crime, not realizing what was happening. Modern man, influenced by manipulative technologies, is the very “man of the crowd”, about which the Spanish philosopher José Ortega y Gasset wrote: “who does not feel any special gift in himself ... he feels “Just like everyone else” and, moreover, is not at all distressed, on the contrary, happy to feel the same as everyone ”(Ortega-i-Gusset X. Rising Masses // Philosophy Issues. -1989, -№ 3 -4.).
Another favorite myth is about Russia's aggression against Ukraine, primarily in the Donbas, where, according to Ukrainian sources, the regular Russian army is fighting. True, there is no evidence for this, but the main thing in the modern world is not proof, but the correct presentation of information. And now not only Ukrainians, but the entire “pro-Western” world believes in Russia's aggressive policy in the Donbas. However, if you recall, even in Russia itself, the establishment of political democracy was accompanied by bloodshed. So, in October 1993 was shot by the Supreme Council, which did not cause any negative reaction from the American and European media. At that time, the United States was counting on the complete subordination of the Russian state to its interests, therefore the shooting of the “red-brown”, as the defenders of the House of Soviets were called in the official democratic press, caused all-round approval. Let us note how strongly the reaction of the United States then differed from the modern reaction to the actions of the Russian authorities in dispersing unauthorized demonstrations in which the country's legislation was violated. Note that the Russian police do not use weapons against demonstrators and are trying to act extremely correctly. In the United States and European countries, such speeches could end up dispersing the crowd with rubber bullets and tear gas. A certain category of Russian citizens has also become a victim of the pro-American media manipulation policy. Their hatred of the existing government has reached the point that they rejoice at any failures of Russia - not only as a “Putin state”, but also as a country as a whole. In fact, they have ceased to be Russian citizens in spirit, although they have Russian passports, enjoy the benefits and guarantees provided by the Russian state. But in response, the “oppositionists” support any anti-Russian initiatives. It comes to anecdotal - they support Western sanctions against the Russian state, they “support” for the Ukrainian troops fighting in the Donbas, rejoice in the victims among the peaceful Donetsk and Lugansk population.
Cultivating the “democratic” myth, the United States and European countries manage to demonstratively support overtly cannibal regimes in the third world countries, if only these regimes would act in the interests of the West and transnational corporations. Latin American and African junta, feudal monarchies of the Persian Gulf countries - they all find support from the United States if they put the interests of Washington and transnational corporations, and not their own citizens, on the first place. It is unlikely that the regimes that exist with the support of the United States are less bloody than the same regime of Saddam Hussein, not to mention Gaddafi. But it is not in the interests of the United States to overthrow governments only because they oppressed their subjects — the main thing is for these governments to serve the “myth of democracy,” that is, the assertion of American domination in the modern world. But how can the population of the United States and Europe, who has access to electronic media and communication and has at least a secondary education, believe in such myth-making? The answer is on the surface: in this case, manipulation technologies come into play that allow you to “zombie” even the educated , but far from the analysis of the political situation, people. Manipulation of consciousness is carried out, including through the falsification of history. It is the “blackening” of the historical past that the manipulators act on consciousness in such a way that the present begins to be assessed in the categories of the blackened past.
As noted by the famous philosopher J. Huizinga, during the twentieth century, history turned into an instrument of lies, used in the interests of political leaders. One can cite countless "historical myths" based on falsification of history. In Russia, the most common myths replicated with the support of the American media have always been myths aimed at discrediting the Soviet past. They can be as frankly delusional in nature (for example, about hundreds of millions of victims of the gulag and political repression under Stalin), and disguise themselves as scientific statements (about the failure of the socialist model of social development). A long time at the end of 1980-x - 1990-x. The “Soviet myth” was severely criticized in the liberal press - as it turned out, in the name of the triumph of the democratic myth. What has turned the destruction of the model of education and upbringing of the younger generations created in the Soviet Union, the social infrastructure, is better not to recall. The consequences of the activities of the liberals, who were at the helm of the Russian state in 1990-s, the country is struggling to overcome today - almost a quarter of a century after the collapse of the USSR and the transition to the “market”.
With the help of electronic media, which are controlled by financial circles in Western countries, there is a manipulative effect on the most educated and socially active groups of people in non-Western countries. It is not by chance that young people and representatives of the “middle class” are considered as the primary target audience of American propaganda. Then, when the situation “ripens” to a critical point, crowds of urban and rural marginality and the lumpen-proletariat join the youth and the “middle class” in the role of “cannon fodder”. As for the leadership of the “oppositions,” as is evidenced by practice, it almost entirely consists of officials and politicians bought up by the United States - this was the case in Libya, Syria, and other countries where pro-American insurrections took place. A typical example is Ukraine, where all the politicians, ascended by Euromaidan to the Olympus authorities, first successfully built a political career under President Viktor Yanukovych, and did not languish in dungeons or partisans in the forests and mountains of the Carpathians. Meanwhile, many residents of non-democratic Asian, African, or Latin American countries who are not included in the total American “democracy” system and did not accept unified “cultural values” of Western origin, are internally much more free than Americans or Europeans.
Tolerance and other myths of the West
Tolerance, proclaimed one of the main principles of "democracy" in Western countries, in practice turns into a variety of all kinds of prohibitions that go to the trivial regulation of everyday life and people's behavior, including in the most private spheres of their activities. According to the concept of tolerance, “minorities” in the modern West acquire most of their rights, turning into a privileged part of the population, which is under state protection. Any criticism of minorities is viewed as nothing less than propaganda of fascism, racism, xenophobia and homophobia. Inevitable companion of the modern civilization of the West becomes total control over the sexual behavior of people, designed, apparently, to influence the reproductive capabilities of the American and European populations. This control is again supported by myths artificially designed and disseminated through the media. One of the classic myths is the myth of homophobia. Homosexuals are proclaimed not just equal with other people, but also “more equal” than others. This is evidenced by the practice of gay parades in Western cities, demonstrative permits for same-sex marriages with their propaganda in society, including among children and adolescents.
- photo: etoday.ru
The domestic philosopher A. Yermakov, referring to the study of the myth of tolerance in the modern West, concludes that it is one of the most important means of manipulating public consciousness in the interests of transnational corporations. “Tolerance covers political and cultural forces that are deeply indifferent to any person and hostile to him,” writes A. Yermakov. “They do not so much protect small religious, national or sexual groups as they use them as human shields and, at the same time, as wedges splitting traditional societies unfriendly to globalization” (Ermakov A. Tolerance: the origins and essence of a modern myth // http://www.pravoslavie.ru/jurnal/405.htm). With the help of the myth of tolerance, the traditional values, ideological and behavioral attitudes that have developed over the centuries are destroyed, because it is thanks to the preservation of traditional values, albeit in a significantly worn form, a significant part of the Earth’s population is still opposed to the Western "world order".
The myth of civil society is becoming another tool for manipulating the consciousness of modern humanity. In the West, the notorious "civil society" has become, according to the apt remark of the philosopher Gilles Deleuze, a "secular priest". That is, it took upon itself the responsibilities of supervising and controlling the behavior of individuals, classes and society as a whole, while at the same time carrying out punitive functions. Another myth is multiculturalism, more precisely, the possibility of establishing multiculturalism as a model for the organization of a modern multi-ethnic state. For a long time, the concept of multiculturalism, developed, by the way, in Canada and the USA, dominated in most countries of Western Europe as the main model for organizing national and social policies. However, in recent years, even the liberal leaders of European states have been forced to admit the fallacy of multiculturalist policies. The fact is that the huge masses of immigrants from the countries of North and Tropical Africa, South Asia, the Middle East, settled in European states, are mostly kept apart, form ethnic enclaves and are absolutely not going to reckon with the opinion of the indigenous people. As a result, favorable conditions are created for interethnic clashes and the spread of anti-migrant sentiments among the population of Western states, which easily develop into nationalistic ones. Not only ordinary citizens, but also politicians, journalists, and public figures cannot fail to see this. But maintaining the myth of the “multi-stump” turns out to be more important for them than protecting the interests of their compatriots in the face of the global challenges of our time, which include increasing migration.
The processes of economic and cultural globalization in the modern world, which are reflected in the affirmation of the political values of the “democracy” of the Western type, put humanity in danger of the emergence and affirmation of the new totalitarianism - the “new world order”, which will be much more terrible than the most brutal dictatorships past and present. Manipulation technologies, comprehensive control over the personality, consciousness and behavior of a person, mass media will become the most important tools for establishing political domination in the new coordinate system. Is an alternative possible? If yes, then it is certainly associated with the rejection of the imposed unified standards, primarily in the socio-cultural sphere. It is possible that the further spread of the Internet, contributing to the autonomization of virtual space, will play a role in the process of abandoning globalist standards. Already, the Internet is not only a zone of activity of pro-American information companies, but also an excellent platform for the dissemination of alternative information and alternative views on the political and economic processes taking place in the world. The wide distribution of the Internet provides access to political information, including critical, opposition and alternative sources. Transnational corporations and Western intelligence agencies, with all their desire, are unable to control all the virtual space of the Internet, which causes them to constantly tighten legislation and contain numerous police structures designed to monitor cyber crime and the spread of anti-globalization and anti-imperialist views in the network.
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2. Ermakov A. Tolerance: the origins and essence of a modern myth // http://www.pravoslavie.ru/jurnal/405.htm.
3. Kara-Murza S.G. Manipulation of consciousness. M., 2004.
4. Lyotap J.-F. The state of the postmodern. SPb., 1998
5. Ortega-i-Gaset X. The Rise of the Masses // Questions of Philosophy. 1989. No.3-4.
6. Reznikov K.Yu. Myths about democracy as a weapon against Russia // http://avkrasn.ru/article-257.html.