Hallucinations of Power

May 20, 2008
By Emerson Brown, Valdosta, GA

Hallucinations of Power

An ideal government, which serves in the best interest of its people, looks out for the economic, political, physical, and mental health of society. All too often, however, obsessive control wakes a dormant virus that drives some into madness in pursuit of unmatched power. And when politics becomes, not an instrument used to better the world, but an addictive drug taken to make one stronger or more powerful than his or her opponent, wisdom gives way to insanity.

A ravenous desire for unchained power is the fountainhead of the “mass of lies, evasion, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia” George Orwell refers to as politics. Indeed, disaster results when such a powerful degenerative disease causes the human soul to crumble to dust. Life becomes a grotesque lust, a bloody obsession. Truth becomes theft and deception; wisdom turns into foolishness, love into hate, peace into war, loyalty into denial, purity into corruption, sheep into wolves, faith into murder, water into blood, and finally, life into death. Blindfolded, we are led by the blind so that we both fall into a pit of sinking muck that sucks us down into the depths of the devil’s parlor with such rapidity that we can no longer tell which way is up and which way is down. We are left with no sense of right or wrong, just a blurred vision through which we can see neither others’ hideously obscured vision, nor our own insanity.

Listen carefully—
“...Yes, McLeod. I want you to record his next campaign meeting. Yes, you’ll get your $11,000…MY past?? It doesn’t matter what I did! What did SHE do?…No, comrade. Ramanov is becoming too much of an obstacle. His time serving the Party is finished… ‘Et tu, Brute?’…Who there? Who keeps whispering my name?… Yes sir. We’ll take care of King right away. Ha, we’ll make all his dreams turn into nightmares…Houston, we have a problem. Houston? My name is not Houston. Who am I then? Are you Houston?… ‘You have a right to know whether or not your President is a crook. I am not a crook’… No, no! It can’t be! Lincoln?! You’ve been dead for 150 years now!! Remember, I was there—I pulled the trigger!…schiz-o-phre-ni-a (noun): a common mental illness characterized by the separation of intellect from emotions, deformations in normal logic thought processes, distorted realities, and delusions …Whispers, whispers…'I have in my hand, the names of 205 pledged Communists. These traitors are currently insiders in our government'…I-I-I was in the KKK, but n-no, I ne-ne-never meant to hurt anyone!…Paranoid? I am not Paranoid. My name is Adolf, and I am a perfectly sane man. And NO, I have never considered suicide!…”
Now stop. Think: Holy Wars? Killing “in the name of God?” Survival of the fittest? Manifest Destiny? World War III? Why?
The lust for power.
It drives men to madness and blinds those who follow unquestioningly. They can no longer see the issue at stake, but become obsessed with defeating the enemy, and in some cases, their own allies. Do we forget that we are all of the same human race, and have full control of our own fate? Chris Hedges, in commenting about war, observes that “most societies never recover from the self-inflicted wounds made to their own culture during wartime. War leaves behind not memory, but amnesia.”
Most common citizens do not possess enough power individually to start a national war, but each of us carries the same dormant virus from which all evil stems. We must find a way to prevent its effects from spreading and ruining lives. We can begin by refusing to follow self-proclaimed “leaders” who allow the lust for power to become their life’s obsession. Power never satisfies anyone; those that walk its plush red carpet will only stain the carpet with their soul’s spilt blood, just as those who went before them. To protect our own souls from this fatal wound, we must stand for what is right OURSELVES, drink daily from the cup of love and wisdom, and cling firmly and humbly to the Truth that will set us free.

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