I’ve always considered this one sort of the quintessential Twisted Image comic strip.
Recently one of my Facebook friends posed the question: “Have you ever succumbed to peer pressure?” I answered: “Usually not. I don’t know if this is because I’m an iconoclast, or a contrarian, or if I just don’t like crowds.”
I thought of something Bukowski once said: “Which ever way the crowd is going I go the opposite direction. The crowd is always wrong.” And I have to admit, I’ve always had an inherent distrust for what I guess you could call the “consensus reality.” I’m always surprised at how impressed so many people are by the consensus reality. When in fact, consensus reality is usually nothing more than the intellectual fashions of the moment.
Even funnier, when one takes a peak outside the consensus reality of one’s own culture and looks at the consensus reality of all the other cultures of the world — not only during the present times but throughout history — you find in fact that there is no consensus about consensus reality. And that virtually every culture comes up with their own consensus reality that usually directly contradicts the consensus of all the other consensus realities.
Now what does that tell you? Probably that I can spin a line of intellectual bullshit with the best of them. Ha ha.
But before we go any further, let me add this caveat (because I know its coming from your steamed up li’l brains). I generally believe the accepted story about “9-11.” I also believe we did in fact walk on the moon. And as to President Obama’s birth certificate, I believe he’s a native-born American citizen (though it sure as fuck wouldn’t surprise me if someday it turned out that that was proven wrong — are you kidding? I don’t trust these politicians as far as I can spit!).
In fact, when you look at “consensus reality,” its usually perpetuated from the top, from the Ruling Class, the 1% or whatever you want to call them. And this is usually so because it’s usually the King who has the power to impose taboos and penalties against anyone who deviates from the consensus reality (“Take that heretic to the dungeon and off with his head!!”).
The Ruling Class also has the means to control the media. Whether its the King James version of the Bible. Or the latest claptrap from the TV news. They’re the ones that can get behind the microphone and instantly transmits their version of reality to millions of people. They’re the ones with the mega-wattage microphone that can drown out and overwhelm dissenting opinions. That doesn’t make their version of reality any more or less true. In fact, its usually less true, because its usually motivated by the self-interests of the ruling class rather than an honest pursuit of truth.
In truth, these puny little media moguls are nothing more than “the little man behind the curtain” as in the Wizard of Oz movie. And once you’ve peaked behind the curtain you’re never quite as impressed or cowed by the MIGHTY ALL POWERFUL WIZARD OF OZ!!!!! You might want to consider this the next time you’re factoring in the bullshit being spewed forth from your television set — and for your information I’m referring to every channel on your television set, not just the ones you happen to disagree with. (And yes, those “Faux News” cracks get more clever every time I hear them).
Speaking of “consensus reality,” nothing defines it more in today’s modern American culture than the term “politically correct.” A term I found odious from the first time I heard it uttered some time wa-a-a-y back in 1976 in Berkeley (Berkeley always was ahead of the times). And I continue to find it more odious every day. Even the word “correct” is insulting and condescending to me. Like someone else has already decided exactly what the correct position is, and that I need to have my thinking “corrected” so that I might share their high mental and moral plane.