Whether you trust our government or not, whether you believe everything you hear in the press, whether or not you are suspicious that there are greater workings at hand beyond the obvious, there is one thing that most of us can agree on: government is in the business of controlling thought.
There are examples both in the extreme and the mundane as to this fact. Press releases and control over the media are commonplace today. Talking points memos are dispersed throughout political parties to create thought recognition of words and concepts in the public mind. Or you can read your history on covert intelligence programs like MKULTRA and COINTELPRO, conceived to experiment with overt mind control programs and the methods to monitor thought and communication of the public at large.
But the new method of control is to instill fear. Think of a deer in headlights: what happens? It freezes, incapable of thought, focused solely on the one and only thing its mind can value at that point, the lethal danger bearing down on it. If you were able to ask that animal about anything else: where are you going to get food today, where is your family, what other predators are nearby? The deer would simply be repeating "headlights" over and over again, unable to move beyond the danger.
With thoughtful beings such as humans, of course, you have to be more subtle. You have to feature creep your way into a culture of paralyzing fear that allows your government to do absolutely distasteful things: delude civil liberties, encroach on your economic freedoms, move ever closer to the fascist government a select number of leaders has yearned for for so long.
So today, I saw this on my way downtown on the Chicago CTA:
We've taken a lost bag and turned it, by implication, into a suitcase bomb? C'mon, Dept. of Homeland Security (who was responsible for the notice), you can do better than that. In Chicago, we've experienced no terrorist threat at all. No one is dying here. There's little to no danger. But we're all supposed to focus on this ethereal threat of the red handbag of death.
Am I overreacting? Perhaps. But as you begin going through your days from now on, pay attention to how many people are warning you of how many dangers in your life, and then begin to think about how much danger you've actually physically encountered. Fear is a powerful motivating factor, as the saying goes. But what are they trying to motivate you to do?
Or not do?