A Heightened Sense Of Vulnerability

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Charles Hugh-Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,

The gap between the happy-story fantasies of easy fixes to institutionalized corruption and systemic stagnation and the fraying-rope reality is widening, straining the bonds holding the whole contraption together to the breaking point.

Am I the only one sensing an increase in systemic vulnerability? I'm not talking about TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it) so much as a sense of things fraying beneath the surface of normalcy.

I for one have never seen the outpouring of negative emotional energy from partisan political disagreements. It has become more a matter of quasi-religious faith than a matter of fact as to whether the Russians "hacked" the U.S. election and the Democratic National Committee. The "facts" are highly dependent on one's faith in this quasi-religious conflict; if you're anti-Trump, the now-discredited report by a private firm reporting to the FBI (red flag #1--doesn't the FBI have its own digital forensics assets? Why hire a flaky contractor to do this critically important national security work?) is the gospel truth.

if you're in the other camp, Julian Assange's declaration that the DNC material was offered to him by an insider is the obvious gospel truth.

There doesn't seem to be any neutral ground left in this quasi-religious divide, and that in itself creates a heightened sense of vulnerability: if we've reached the point where verifiable facts no longer matter, and one's faith in a partisan narrative is the deciding factor in what each citizen declares as "true," we are vulnerable to a breakdown not just of consensus but discourse.

We have reached the state where you have to be as cautious in revealing your political views or doubts as any Catholic or Protestant revealing their faith and doubts in the Reformation wars, in which faith alone decided life or death if you were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

That the issues dividing the nation into these faith-based camps are fundamentally unimportant no longer matters. Is it really consequential to the nation who sent the DNC emails to the media via Wikileaks? The answer is no: the DNC is not a governmental agency, it is a private-sector political organization.

Does it really matter if Russia attempted to influence the U.S. elections? There are a few ways this could be consequential, but they are speculative and lacking factual evidence.

One is a very unsavory hypocrisy. Has the U.S. government ever attempted to influence elections in other nations? Please don't even try to claim the answer is "no." There is simply too much documentation to claim the U.S. has a saintly policy of never attempting to influence the domestic views (and thus the election results) in other nations.

Since the U.S. constantly seeks to influence public opinion and elections in other nations, how falsely do our protests ring to international ears? How many observers in other nations are reckoning the U.S. is deservedly reaping a tiny shred of its own karma?

The other consequential possibility is if Russian government (or government sanctioned) hackers actually modified election results in voting machines or official tallies. To date, there is no evidence whatever of such direct tampering.

This quasi-religious conflict has blown unsupported speculations about Russian influence into the critical deciding factor of whether you are a member of the hated "other side" or not. Simply casting doubt on the criticality of this issue slips a noose around your neck in the so-called "Progressive" religion.

Does anybody else feel that the financial ropes holding the whole contraption together are fraying? When I post data-based charts illustrating the impossibility of paying all the promises that have been made to hundreds of millions of Americans without borrowing destabilizingly vast sums of money from future generations, some readers dismiss it as "doom and gloom." In other words, where's your American optimism that all challenges can be met and all problems solved, without any adjustment or sacrifice in our lifestyles or socio-economic systems?

Remember switch grass? This miracle weed was touted as the "solution" to the low energy yield on bio-fuel replacements for fossil fuels. We don't hear about it any more because it was a chimera, a PR "solution" as opposed to a real-world solution.

We have already reached the state of joyously embracing delusional PR "solutions" rather than grasping the nettle of addressing our systemic problems. Technological advances will not only solve every problem, we're assured, these advances will generate unprecedented wealth and prosperity.

Well, maybe so. That would certainly be convenient for us all. But I am not so sure technology will dislodge the systemic corruption of our economy and machinery of governance, the cartel-state status quo that smothers any advances that threaten its profits and/or power.

If there is a cheap and easy techno-fix to wealth and income disparity and declining productivity (i.e. declining profitability of labor and capital invested), then I'm all ears.

But it seems to me that the gap between the happy-story fantasies of easy fixes to institutionalized corruption and systemic stagnation and the fraying-rope reality is widening, straining the bonds holding the whole contraption together to the breaking point.

*  *  *

If you found value in this content, please join Charles in seeking solutions by becoming a $1/month patron of his work via patreon.com. Check out both of his new books, Inequality and the Collapse of Privilege ($3.95 Kindle, $8.95 print) and Why Our Status Quo Failed and Is Beyond Reform ($3.95 Kindle, $8.95 print). For more, please visit the OTM essentials website.

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RagaMuffin's picture

Reality has broken through even the shallowest, nominally shared notion of integrity - from politics to economics to religion.........

NoDebt's picture

I'm feeling very vulnerable right now.  Somebody please hold me.


silverer's picture

Are you in California? I'd rush over but the traffic is pretty heavy right now... lol

lasvegaspersona's picture

Problems that can't be fixed must be ignored.

Seasmoke's picture

Why would you type TEOTWAWKI if you are just going to spell out the entire saying (the end of the world as we know it) ?????

malek's picture

So people who don't know that standard abbreviation learn about it? Duh.

BigFatUglyBubble's picture

That's funny, I'm having chicken TEOTWAWKI for dinner tonight. 

Strive, strive, surmount the obstacles
Become the essence of your goals
Hereditary dream
Pray that you may attain that destiny
Fall into the coveted line
Where life is but a theme
Of pretense in lustrous guise

Claims and values
Charts of means and status
Plaques to show your strife
Do your neighbour clones approve

Picture perfect illustration
Imitation of life
Where the path is evened out
All obstructions removed

Great viable citizen
Are you happy now?
Then praise your God and bow

Shimmering surface
The gleam of blinding lies
Become the product
The thing you so desire

To what length would you go to reach your goals?
What mantra will you use to justify your means?
Who will you betray to secure your dream?
What sins will you commit to avoid your sins be seen?

Do not look down
Do not look down
Or the abysmal beast of non-conformity
Might stare some unpleasant truth
Into your desensitized mind

Shimmering surface
The gleam of blinding lies
Become the product
The thing you so desire

-Tomas Haake

Joe Cool's picture

Everybody's looking for an excuse to get pissed off at the "other ones" who don't know anything and are hopeless...They'll push this thing where they want it and then pull the plug...

shamus001's picture

I've periodically wondered?

Is a billionaire today living a better or worse quality of life than if the system tanked, property sold off, they bought lots of it (like the nobles) then during some semblance of sound financial stability (with the tax base destroyed) we all live in broken down properties, busted roads, fluctuating power and high crime (the kind of crime that makes its way in gangs to the richies property)

In a future where the rich cannot safely venture out, where all they see is disparity, where no one anylonger builds luxury yachts, and golf courses in luxurious locations are no more, where luxury restaraunts no longer exist... In that financial misery, that "hell on earth" (Look to Venezuela, took em only 4 years to get there) 

WOULD THEIR QUALITY OF LIFE BE INCREASED? OR DECREASED?  Certainly their suffering would be less, but they would die in time living under FAR WORSE conditions than they currently do.  YES EVEN THEY. (That's if bands of marauders don't sack their homestead and murder everyone inside to capture their stock of goods- because.... thats what starving, miserable people do when they have no hope of a brighter future and everything to gain!)

Angry White Guy's picture

Everyone has this feeling, blah blah blah.  Everyone is emminating negative energy.  Blah blah blah.  Let's get the GD show rolling already.  This slow motion trainwreck is tantamount to collective chinese water torture.

I'm increasingly of the mind the system is never going to fail, it's just going to slow motiion rob everyone of all wealth, and in stealth return us slowly to the dark ages of caste system and monarchy.  It will happen so slow no one will be able to muster enough critical mass of the masses to do anything about it.

Joe Cool's picture

Dude....It will come to a head...Don't worry....Reactions always require a certain amount of activation energy...They're just waiting for Trump to be in office long enough...

Angry White Guy's picture

My only prediction about how it unravels is that no one's prediction will be accurate.  

shamus001's picture

You may be right... but I can tell you how it ends!  You just need to open a history book, and read about royalty getting dismembered by the populace whom overrun the castle.

Reaper's picture

Will I be accepted at the local college safe space?

IranContra's picture

A Cognitive Analysis of Denial and Deception

We have no perfect knowledge of anything. If we tag something about which we have some imperfect knowledge as true fact, that's called faith and believing. It is a rational mental process.

If we tag something as true fact, then we don't like the emotional experience, and finally tag it as "not real" instead, that is called denial. It is an irrational emotional process.

All deception starts with denial, and only those in denial can be deceived. The goal of allowing deception games is to rally those in denial and organize them in big groups, parties etc. The liberals who defend Hillary and Obama are a great example of people in denial. CNN and others rally them in a process of garbage collection, compaction and disposal. The Devil and the Antichrist and their followers manage that process under God's control. Luciferians are garbage collectors without any real power.

One form of deception such as Christian Zionism seeks to direct a  group to support a bad cause: Israeli occupation.

Another type of deception seeks to rally people against a good cause. ISIS is like that.

I have talked to people who dealt with ISIS and almost got killed by them. They said: ISIS are not Arabs, not Muslims, they are devilish criminals.

ISIS are not bad Muslims. They are luciferians trying to make Islam look bad.

Only those in denial will be deceived by ISIS. President Trump is not one of them.

barysenter's picture

Galatians 6:7 bitches.

YHWH is greater's picture

Galatians 6:7King James Version (KJV)

7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

Cardinal Fang's picture

This subject engenders many philosophical questions; semantics, intent, truth value, pragmatic realism etc.

It's all bullshit.

The issue of election interference reminds me of how people somehow think of the US as the Enterprise from star trek and the prime directive ...

More bullshit.

'Facts are meaningless'
-Homer Simpson


The Gray Man's picture

Things are fraying underneath, because the elites are pushing things on us that we know are not normal or healthy. For example, the APA telling us that adult sexual arousal toward children is normal:


Iconoclast421's picture

When the market actually drops below its key moving averages, I will begin to feel this heightened sense of vulnerability. But it has to drift below them. A 1987 style crash just results in a money printing panic extravaganza followed by new highs.

malek's picture

Mostly agree, Charles.

But after writing
 embracing delusional PR "solutions"
maybe you shouldn't attach a graph underneath based on Piketty...
Also don't forget the very important follow-through thought that if someone finds this
"The other consequential possibility is if Russian government (or government sanctioned) hackers actually modified election results in voting machines or official tallies."
then they would NEED to admit that if Russians can do it, any other organized group could have done it as well...