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The expression “canary in the mineshaft” is a reference to an earlier time when the only way of getting an early warning of the build up of lethal gases in a mine was to station a caged canary there and if it expired the miners would hurry out to escape death.
A populace today is in need of a similar alert to conditions that will enslave us (at best) or kill us (at worst). What might those be?
- Unequal application of law
- Public corruption
- Popular immiseration
- Perpetual war-making
This is not an exclusive list (and yours might be better). And a relatively small quantity of each might not kill the “canary.” But where are we?
It seems that riots are acceptable these days so long as they are conducted by preferred persons or for preferred ideas. Racism is the accepted response to grievance and does not exist if directed at Asians, Jews, and “white” people. Thought is being made a crime and theft is being ignored in far too many jurisdictions. When thought is not being prosecuted, it’s spoken form is being censored in even more places. Public corruption is evident in the highest centers of power (cf., the Bidens and all those politicians who have become startlingly wealthy at a rate that cannot be explained simply by prudent saving and investing). Inflation is immiserating everyone, but the wealthy are less affected. No single contributor to inflation is greater than energy costs and policies to prevent energy abundance at low prices. A close second is sovereign debt manipulated by corrupt officials. And, finally, to divert the people away from the source of many of their challenges, is whipping up external threats, which must exist in perpetuity lest the masses turn their energy and rage on the true source of their misery.
Is the professionally managed election process just a domestic version of the “perpetual war-making”? Does it matter anymore who holds office? If so, it only works as long as enough of us pretend that things are OK, that the levels of toxic substances are still less than lethal. Well, maybe it doesn’t actually work indefinitely, but it extends the period of the dream world in which the elders can toddle off before complete collapse. Is that the best-case scenario?Published in