What You Are Supposed to Believe

You are supposed to believe that your own immediate physical comfort and safety are the highest priorities of life, and that anything which threatens, or is alleged to threaten, either of those in any way is sufficient warrant for giving up all your freedoms, as required, to anyone who is able to convince you that he can ensure your physical comfort and safety, if only you give him the power to make your choices for you.

You are supposed to believe that filtering all your public activities and social relationships through computers (or earlier but analogous superhuman machines and systems, e.g., bureaucracies, corporate hierarchies), and even, when possible, talking exclusively to the computers (or their predigital analogues) rather than to individual and autonomous — that is, self-determining and context-sensitive — humans, is a great advance in freedom and politico-economic existence, such that anyone who prefers to interact directly with autonomous and context-responsive human beings is to be dismissed or ridiculed as being stuck in an antiquated and regressive mode of living.

You are supposed to believe that men and women who manifestly have no coherent thoughts of their own, no motivating principles other than petty power lust and material gratification, and no moral compass other than the standards of popularity and the accumulation of power and wealth, are your absolute superiors, and thus ought to be granted, by your own voluntary submission, the authority to control your property, your interaction with other citizens, your speech, your children’s education, and the long-term trajectory of your community and country.

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