In his critique of the neoliberal structure, Noam Chomsky said that nothing was being done because “there is no profit in preventing a future catastrophe.” In a time of global crisis caused by a pandemic, I could sharpen this thesis by asking, “Is there a profit in creating a catastrophe?” I ask this question in the conditions of the rapid replacement of the globalist model of the world by a neo-corporatist new order.
How to deal with the reduction of constitutional and democratic rights in a pandemic and how to recognize the hidden political “appetites” for increasing state- political repression and control of the population? Will any new ethics and aesthetics of engagement develop in the post-pandemic world? And more importantly: Is engaged literature today engaged in the same way, what are the genres and forms; the audience and the scope of such writing? What is the impact of such intellectual and, in a broader sense, artistic engagement on the people today?
Recently, at a virtual literature festival, a panel leader asked me a question: Can we afford art?
It took time for people – debt slaves of predatory corporatism – to get to the point of losing the right to think critically. The global health crisis was just a trigger that showed that in a month and a half of a pandemic, the rich can get even richer, that they can actually become “perversely rich,” as Bernie Sanders says. To these people, this monetary elite of 0.1% of humanity – there’s no interest in investing in the consciousness of debtors. Debtors who do not have the right to critical thinking do not need education, especially not artistic education. They must not be able to count without a calculator, just as Martin Bormann dreamed up in his Nazi vision of human society regarding the untermensh class. Today, the debt slaves of neoliberalism must be convinced that they do not need art because it is too expensive for them to think critically.
We are slaves to artificially created needs on which someone makes a lot of money. But Can we still afford art today?
We must evolutionarily be able to afford art because it teaches us to find creative solutions to problems.
For example, prompted by a population explosion after World War Two, John B. Calhoun decided to check what awaits us if the population continues to grow. He built a paradise for rats “Universe 25”.
– Rodents have begun to become naturally extinct. The only thing that managed to stop the rat tragedy for a short time was to give creative tasks to intelligent rodents. This shows the need for art in the time of Big Brother and artificially created desires for beautifully packaged products that actually destroy our health …
Even the issue of human rights is no longer an issue that can be debated. Today – in the midst of the so-called “cancel culture” – things seem to be absurd: undesirable and negative social phenomena, people and topics are not analyzed, but simply – with the help of the principle of blocking on social networks – problems are “erased”.
“A Letter on Justice and Open Debate.” signed this summer by hundreds of intellectuals, including Chomsky and Margaret Atwood, warns of the intolerance of opposing views, the fad of public humiliation and ostracism, and the tendency to discuss complex political issues from a position of moral security.
Cancel culture has evolved from the immaturity of people, from the brainless narcissism fueled by social networks in which an “undesirable phenomenon” is treated as an “evil individual”. The dangerous naivety of the superficial, blunt activism that prevails today – foolishly implies that there is an easy solution to every problem. Just as an evil individual would be canceled from the media, so an undesirable topic is blocked.
In my opinion, the saddest thing of all is that recent attempts at public disobedience around the world are immature and futile efforts that lack a true vision and goal.
Some recent examples of what I call a mindless parody of the revolution – inadvertently serve the “Golden Calf” of neo-corporatism. From deliberately fueling the low passions of the crowd in the Black Lives Matter movement, to the moronic organizing of anti-mask protests across Europe – all of the above fits perfectly into the stage directing of the crisis.
Event 201 – a pandemic exercise held a month before the outbreak of covid-19 – was a multimedia event conducted at Hopkins University in collaboration with the World Economic Forum and the Gates Foundation. Simulations have existed before, but experts have added a new layer of realism by including, this time, not only government and NGOs but also the private sector and corporate representatives. Participants were representatives of NBC Universal or pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry giants like Johnson & Johnson. ”
Back in the year 2019 the project manager of the Event 201 said – let me quote – “Very few people have involved the private sector in pandemic preparedness, but it is in this sector that most resources are located,”
This is especially true when it comes to vaccine development.