Barbara H. Peterson, Guest Writer
Remember when things lasted a long time? I recall going with my dad to the hardware store, and being able to find just about everything needed to fix anything on the ranch. Need a gasket? Just get the gasket material and cut your own. Got a gadget that won’t work? Just get the part that’s broken, replace that one part, and the gadget works again. Not so, today. Today, we buy something, and if it doesn’t work, we simply throw it away and get a new one, because that is the way things are made. They are not made to last. They are made to break and the sooner, the better.
This is planned obsolescence, and it has been eroding our society ever since it was set in motion along with mass marketing and fast-tracked, courtesy of Edward Bernays, who set up the first “public relations” department for the express purpose of using propaganda as a tool to manipulate the public for profit. We are now strangling in its grip, oblivious to the reality behind the slogans and hype, and successfully programmed to think this is normal, standing proud in our ignorance.
With a need for instant gratification firmly entrenched in our nation’s psyche by an army of professional con artists out to make a buck, the concept of a throwaway society reared its ugly head to the delight of those behind the scenes, greedily rubbing their hands together in anticipation of the windfall they were about to receive – profit without end. And this is the society in which we now live. A society based on instant gratification and planned obsolescence.
I noticed that this nation’s “fix it yourself” mentality started changing years ago. Parts that were once easily obtainable became “no longer available.” Want a part to fix your whatchamacallit? Nope, can’t have it – gotta get a new one. The parts aren’t available anymore, and good luck getting your whatchamacallit open to replace anything in it. If it breaks, don’t fix it, throw it away and buy a new one.
Cars that were once made to be worked on by home mechanics now take a computer specialist to diagnose. Who cares? After all, if consumers buy a new car every couple of years or so, who needs them to last? Can’t wear the same dress to the party, gotta have a new one, along with shoes to match. Last year’s style simply will not do.
Yes, the corporations have programmed us well. We are a nation of wasteful consumers, keeping the gluttonous purveyors of gadgets, doohickeys and flash in champagne and caviar. Thank you, Edward Bernays, for your ever so helpful insight into enabling corporations to program the masses for wasteful spending in order to line the pockets of greedy, blood sucking leaches whose only purpose is to use us up and spit us out. You see, planned obsolescence does not merely apply to things. It also applies to people.
We are living in a world where very powerful people behind the scenes hold license to decide who is to live and who is to die. They get to pick and choose who the throwaway people are. The expendables. The ones who hold no worth in their eyes. Through some sort of arbitrary judgment – one lives, one dies, and the rules always change.
The rules change because the object has no say and no value – functioning merely as a piece on the grand chessboard. And if you happen to be the flavor of the month, you get to live. But only for a time, and only if you are nice. Really, really nice and obey your masters. But it won’t be forever. Forever is much too good for the pawns. Pawns are meant to be sacrificed, just as we are being sacrificed on the altar of big business and decaying from whatever poisons the propaganda machine put forth by Bernays directs us to take.
We’re poked and prodded, drugged into submission, shot full of poisons, and fed toxic waste. We are, each and every one of us, a statistic in a planned obsolescence program. And while we are breaking down from stress, toxins, chemicals, GMOs, vaccines, and medical quackery, to name a few, we are generating a whole lotta cash for a whole lotta people, as well as providing valuable data while we serve as guinea pigs for experimental research in genetic modification.
But what the hey? After all is said and done, the puppet masters will survive! And they will garner more and more cash and power to play at immortality. The goal? Remaking the world and its inhabitants from the molecule up. We the people are living under planned obsolescence. And we don’t even know it because we are being systematically fed comfortable lies by a propaganda machine in the guise of public relations for the express purpose of profit, power and total control.
But it’s okay, our replacements are right around the corner. After all, the bodies we have can’t last forever. Let’s throw them away and get new ones. What say we make them bigger, better, smarter and more controllable than the obsolete model. The human model.
Why not build super soldiers that we can just replace when we feel like it? Expendable. Throwaways. Or factory workers, or maybe housekeepers, maids, miners, firefighters, police, truck drivers…. The possibilities are endless. One gives you trouble, just throw it away and get a new one. And when the time comes to shed this mortal shell, just hop right on into the artificial body of your dreams, courtesy of a brain transplant, or maybe your brain on a chip, implanted in that disposable body.
Natural humans would become as obsolete as last year’s iPod.
A powerful dream, eh? Complete control over life and death. Intoxicating. And also dangerous. Very dangerous. Not to mention foolish, disastrous, maniacal, insane, against nature and all that is right and natural and good. Man replacing man and nature. The same species that thinks nuclear power plants on fault lines are an okay idea. Go figure. But seriously, what could possibly go wrong?
©2013 Barbara H. Peterson
About the Author
Barbara Peterson is the author of the critical blog, Farm Wars, where this article originally appeared.
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