|Once upon a time ...|
In the second post of this series we mentioned that some are beginning to use psychoanalytical terms when referring to the direction civilization is going, also focusing on some of the propaganda push-back.
In the third post of the series we went through the similarities between the Jim Jones-Jonestown mass-murder suicide pact and the current problem this series is focusing on (ecocide).
In the most recent post prior to this post today, we looked at some aspects of the problems which doctors are now calling the addiction to fossil fuels and the role denial plays.
Today, we will regroup somewhat to reemphasize the foundational validity of the series, that is, that its hypothesis rests upon solid scientific grounds.
No less than "The Father of Psychoanalysis" indicated that he saw no reason why the psychoanalysis of a meme complex is too far fetched to bring to fruition, whether that meme complex is a church, a political party, a state, the fossil fuel industry, or even an entire civilization:
If the evolution of civilization has such a far reaching similarity with the development of an individual, and if the same methods are employed in both, would not the diagnosis be justified that many systems of civilization—or epochs of it—possibly even the whole of humanity—have become neurotic under the pressure of the civilizing trends? To analytic dissection of these neuroses, therapeutic recommendations might follow which could claim a great practical interest. I would not say that such an attempt to apply psychoanalysis to civilized society would be fanciful or doomed to fruitlessness. But it behooves us to be very careful, not to forget that after all we are dealing only with analogies, and that it is dangerous, not only with men but also with concepts, to drag them out of the region where they originated and have matured. The diagnosis of collective neuroses, moreover, will be confronted by a special difficulty. In the neurosis of an individual we can use as a starting point the contrast presented to us between the patient and his environment which we assume to be normal. No such background as this would be available for any society similarly affected; it would have to be supplied in some other way. And with regard to any therapeutic application of our knowledge, what would be the use of the most acute analysis of social neuroses, since no one possesses power to compel the community to adopt the therapy? In spite of all these difficulties, we may expect that one day someone will venture upon this research into the pathology of civilized communities. [p. 39](Civilization and Its Discontents, S. Freud, 1929, emphasis added). He did caution that the development of such techniques should be done carefully, which one psychologist has accomplished with an analysis of Wall Street workers (see When You Are Governed By Psychopaths - 2, section "The Diagnosis of Mania").
Men have brought their powers of subduing the forces of nature
to such a pitch that by using them they could now very easily exterminate one another to the last man. They know this—hence arises a great part of their current unrest, their dejection, their mood of apprehension. [p. 40]
The reason for such a discipline, Dredd Blog argued, is that the problem involved is not a business problem, it is a psychological problem (ibid).
What better time than the present to get going with this analysis and give it the authority to get the job done, because:
It’s no secret where this denialism comes from: the fossil fuel industry pays for it. (Of the 16 authors of the Journal article, for instance, five had had ties to Exxon.) Writers from Ross Gelbspan to Naomi Oreskes have made this case with such overwhelming power that no one even really tries denying it any more. The open question is why the industry persists in denial in the face of an endless body of fact showing climate change is the greatest danger we’ve ever faced.(MOMCOM's Mass Suicide & Murder Pact). In a similar vein others have gone further to focus in on the main meme complex involved:
But what all these climate numbers make painfully, usefully clear is that the planet does indeed have an enemy – one far more committed to action than governments or individuals. Given this hard math, we need to view the fossil-fuel industry in a new light. It has become a rogue industry, reckless like no other force on Earth. It is Public Enemy Number One to the survival of our planetary civilization. "Lots of companies do rotten things in the course of their business – pay terrible wages, make people work in sweatshops – and we pressure them to change those practices," says veteran anti-corporate leader Naomi Klein, who is at work on a book about the climate crisis. "But these numbers make clear that with the fossil-fuel industry, wrecking the planet is their business model. It's what they do."(MOMCOM's Mass Suicide & Murder Pact - 4). The bottom line is that there is a meme complex, the fossil fuel industry, that is taking civilization toward its doom, that said meme complex is in denial of the reality, and that fossil fuel industry is deceiving others away from grasping that reality.
Freud has also explained:
Neurosis does not disavow the reality, it ignores it; psychosis disavows it and tries to replace it.(The Loss of Reality in Neurosis and Psychosis, Freud, 1924, p. 185) . Thus, as previous posts in this series have shown, the fossil fuel industry has gone beyond neurosis, and is now into psychosis.
The Dredd Blog has also mentioned that the meme complex some have called "public enemy number one" is being considered by The United Nations, in early, embryonic proceedings in this matter, but in the context of criminal proceedings:
But should the bosses of polluting companies and the leaders of environmentally-unfriendly states join those responsible for mass murder in the dock. They could if a fifth crime against peace - ecocide - joined that list of human evils? The United Nations is now considering the proposal and the first test of how a prosecution for ecocide would work takes place on Friday, with fossil fuel bosses in the dock at the UK supreme court in London. It is a mock trial of course, but with real top-flight lawyers and judges and a jury made up of members of the public. The corporate CEOs will be played by actors briefed by their legal teams.(Is 'Insanity' A Valid Defense To Ecocide?). Again, the idea of The United Nations handling this matter is a good idea, but doing so under a criminal prosecution may not be as effective as doing so under a system of psychoanalysis with the authority to administer therapy.
We must leave that to the powers that be who are not yet psychotic, and to the public which needs to break free from the Jim Jones of Jonestown meme complex (the fossil fuel industry).
The previous post in this series is here.