by ilene - August 29th, 2010 1:01 pm
Charles presents the dark side of social media and argues that along with hip hop and fast-food, it is a mechanism to wreck the best within us and turn us into over-consuming, desensitized airheads and zombies. He argues that the "global marketing complex" is designed to undermine "our sense of internal security by objectifying the measures of self-worth." Let’s say this is so, but has it ever been different and are hip hop, fast foods and social media really just new tools and devises to accomplish this goal? – Ilene
Courtesy of Charles Hugh Smith, Of Two Minds
The shock troops of Corporate Empire actively undermine traditional culture, health and engagement with the real world, clearing the way for colonization and passive consumption.
The defenders of hip-hop, fast food and social media are legion. Critics of these Corporate Empire shock troops are labeled (and thus dismissed) as fusty social "conservatives," anti-technology Luddites and "liberal" busy-bodies getting in the way of "consumer’s right to choose" their own music, food and hobbies.
The irony is the most passionate defenders of hip-hop, fast food and social media are unaware that they are actually defending the storm troopers of Corporate Empire.
Yes, there are hip-hop atists with positive messages, and fast-food giants attempting to improve the range of their offerings, and examples of social media enabling political resistance.
But all these arguments, justifications and polemics boil down to the equivalent of all the arguments, justifications and polemics in favor of corporate fascism, colonialism and Empire: the trains run on time, we’re spreading "civilization" to the "primitives," capitalism and technology will free the oppressed classes, etc.
The spirited defense is not coincidence, for hip-hop, fast food and social media are the shock troops of Corporate Empire. While marketed by defenders as either essentially harmless "youth-oriented" avenues of self-expression or the progressive vanguard of individual choice, they are the active agents of Corporate Empire "soft power," undermining traditional cultures, human health and engagement with the real world --the subtle, largely invisible realm of unconscious assumptions and propaganda I term the politics of experience.
Once traditional sources of stability and health have been undermined, dismantled and replaced with a mono-culture of marketing that glorifies self-absorption, conspicuous consumption and personal worth measured by broadcasted "likes" and other visible measures of popularity, then the Corporate…