Friday, September 30, 2005

George Orwell & 1984

I recently went back to re-read Orwell's 1949 novel "1984" in which he painted a picture of how things might be in certain societies in 1984. He was pretty amazingly right except for the year, which actually came about somewhat earlier.

Some things he described in the novel were:

“Big Brother” & “Thought Police” - government surveillance of people and the media, for example:

Wire-tapping citizens’ phones on ‘suspicion’;

Investigating citizen library & other personal records without their knowledge on ‘suspicion’:

Detaining and indefinitely imprisoning people without trial or charge on ‘suspicion” or as ‘Enemy Combatants”;

“Embedding” reporters and correspondents in the military, and then controlling their output.

Government funding of ‘documentaries’ to get a Neo-Con propaganda view across;

Jailing a reporter for 85 days for refusing to disclose her sources - in accordance with historically accepted journalistic ethics.

All “animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others” - specifically the ‘pigs’ who gain political control, for example;

George W. Bush who sees no problem with outright lies - so long as the lies are Neo-Con lies;

Karl Rove who plots and schemes behind the scenes and violates national laws with impunity;

Tom Delay who has been cited for ethics violations, directly violated laws, and used his political position for pecuniary family gain, who claims that “I AM the government” and may never pay for his transgressions.

Bill Frist who piously claims innocence of violating laws on insider trading which is patently false;

The appointment of an egregiously unqualified political hack to a position of critical public responsibility, resulting in the most costly natural disaster in US history.

Revision of history to fit political views or inconvenient facts, for example;

Trials and execution of Nazi ‘war criminals’ after WWII while totally ignoring allied policies of saturation bombing of German cities exterminating German civilians in the millions. Only recently has it come to light how extensive was that campaign;

Falsifying historical data in order to justify an invasion, and ignoring other inconvenient data;

Justifying an illegal invasion of another country by reason of their possession of “Weapons of Mass Destruction” which are never found because they do not exist, then justifying the invasion as a “War against Terror” - (also qualifies under Newspeak & Doublespeak below).

“Newspeak” - the labeling of people and groups in order to control and direct propaganda attacks for or against them, for example

“American Patriot” or “True American” for someone who never troubled to serve his/her country so long as they are a Right Wing or Neo-Con supporter, even when they attack those who actually have sacrificed for the country;

“Conservative” for a Neo-Con, who is anything but;

“Left wing Democrat”, “Communist” or “Traitor” for any Democrat or non Neo-Con;

“Radical Liberal” for anyone who disagrees with Right Wing dogma, or objects to abdicating our entire country to Big Oil interests; (Not incidentally, but have you noticed gas prices at the pump are up 100% since the current group took control?)

“Diehard Socialist” for anyone who supports people programs.

“Extreme Environmentalist” for anyone who speaks up for environmental sanity;

"Left Leaning" for any political moderate;

“Whiner” for anyone who objects to the rape of their country.

“Doublespeak” - in essence, political propaganda, for example:

“Peacekeeping Forces” used to make war;

“Defense Strategy” to define an aggressive war;

“Defending Freedom and Democracy” by invading another country;

“Freedom Fighter” for any pro-Right Wing rebel such as a Contra in Nicaragua, or the Pol Pot in Cambodia, who ultimately killed millions;

“Terrorist” for any anti-Right Wing rebel or someone who disagrees;

“Bringing Dignity to the White House” by replacing a horny President with a “War President”, ultimately costing thousands of lives in the process;

and, perhaps silliest of all, renaming “French Fries” to “Freedom Fries” simply because France disagrees with your Neo-Con madness!


  1. Well stated, friend. 1984 was only Orwell summation of the totalitarian excesses he saw morphing in the western world. His other letters and essays go even further in pointing out the trends we now see coming to fruition.

    The question remains: at what point, if ever, will John Q. American Public finally wake up and see that he's been had, and bad.

  2. I believe (I must believe) that John Q. American Public is beginning to get a glimmer of an idea of how badly he's been had.


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