Sunday, August 24, 2014

215. Fear

As the faithful reader knows, I sometimes kid C.W. about his entrepreneurial dreams. Okay, I’ll admit it, I always kid C.W. about his entrepreneurial dreams. Otherwise, what’s the fun of having an alien around?

But when he becomes serious, I listen and we talk. After all, we are supposed to be learning from one another.

It’s when he takes on this sort of Walter Cronkite look that I know I may learn from him. That’s how he showed up recently wanting to take a morning walk before the heat arrived. We walked for a while before he spoke, another sign of impending seriousness.

“I spent some time tri-sensoring yesterday,” he said. This is a trick he does where he listens to the voice material, reads, and watches TV simultaneously. The only difference between him and the typical teenager is that he absorbs all three in full and equal doses. It’s a Falloonian thing.

“Oh,” I said. “and what were your sources?”

“That book you gave me,” he said, “the one that just had a number for a title.”

“1984,” I said.

“That’s it.”

“And what else?”

“I listened to one of your ‘Great Courses’ CDs. It was a scientist exploring the Earthling’s view of natural selection and descent with modification.”

“Darwin’s views,” I said.

“Yes,” he said. “He was pretty close, you know.”

“That is what I’ve have heard. What else?”

This so-called “news” channel named after a carnivorous mammal of the dog family with a pointed muzzle and bushy tail, proverbial for its cunning.”

“Fox News?”

“I’ll admit,” he said, “I flipped between it and some of your media-driven religious outlets.”

“TV evangelists,” I said.

“Does anyone else think them a bit strange?”

“Yes,” I said, “but go ahead. What did you decide?”

“I decided,” he said, “that if I were to consider a business, I might call it ‘Dial a Fear’ or something like that.”

“Dial a Fear? Why?”

“Your species seems to crave fear,” he said, “and thrive on it, thirst for it, and reward its purveyors handsomely.”

I didn’t say anything.

“Further,” he said, “It seems to control the mechanisms of your society.”


“Gladly,” he said. “Remember how the Thought Police broke Winston Smith in Orwell’s book?”

“Rats,” I said. “They did it with rats.”

“Rats were just the tool,” he said. “They did it with fear. Not love. Not promise of reward. Not societal approval. Not religion. Not family or clan loyalty. They did it with fear.”

I didn’t say anything.

Of course your religious foundations are built on a strong edifice of fear.”

“How so?”

“Don’t you think the prospect of your body burning in agony for all eternity makes a strong and lasting impression on a five-year old? Or the fear of never seeing your family again while they are happily singing hymns together while watching you burn?”

I didn’t say anything.

“And your news is not news, in any true sense of the word, but fear packaged in the wrappings of current events. The ‘others’ are coming seems to be the prevalent theme. Even you, yourself, will admit that the modern development patterns in your cities result from fear of ‘the others.’”

Start them out with a healthy dose of fear
and control them for life, I always say. - C.W.
I didn’t say anything.

He said, “I think it is genetically, that is to say evolutionary, based.”

“How so?”

“Your ancestors in the wild who didn’t live in fear didn’t live long,” he said, as if talking to a third-grader.”

“Oh,” I said. “Now I’m going to have to think about all this a bit,” I said.

“Fine,” he said. “Meanwhile let’s go watch some political ads.”

I didn’t say anything.

We are closing in on that new computer, so click on some ads.
Also, check out
- C.W.

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