The fate of sheeple

My philosophy of life is that the meek shall inherit nothing but debasement, frustration, and ignoble deaths.

Harlan Ellison

I was spoilt for choice when considering an apposite quote with which to open. I rather like the one from J Paul Getty – “The meek shall inherit the Earth; but not the mineral rights.”. There’s no shortage of quotable wisdom warning of the perils of meekness. You’d think people would have learned. Unless you knew any people. In which case you might be shocked by the docility with which they march to their doom, but not surprised. If scripture is to be our guide then the meek would surely have inherited the entire solar system by now. Instead, all we get is debasement, frustration and ignoble death. Such are the true wages of meekness.

To be meek is to be submissive. Tractable. Manipulable. Docility is a self-reinforcing condition because being meek means that you can be manipulated into being more meek yet. The meek are ripe for plucking by those even moderately skilled in the art and science of manipulation. Everybody thinks that everybody else is too easily manipulated by politicians and the media, while nobody admits that they are. Nobody likes to admit that they’ve been manipulated. Not even to themselves. The the greater the extent that they have been manipulated into a particular conclusion the more fervently they will tend to insist that the conclusion was arrived at entirely independently and by reason alone. The meek inherit more meekness.

Meekness is a close cousin to apathy and complacency. Together, they consign the masses to the fate that has always been the fate of the masses. Complacency, apathy and humility combine to ensure that the many will uncomplainingly accept the discomfort and disadvantage that is the price of comfort and advantage for the few. ‘Twas ever thus.

It is also the case that few resent the activist more than those who are resigned to their fate. The powerful long since learned that the submissiveness of the masses was more cost-effectively ensured by fear of loss than by fear of the sword. The less people have the more desperately they will cling to it. But those who have nothing have nothing to lose. So the trick to keeping the masses in line is to get the right balance of well-being and insecurity. Most lives some of the time and many lives most of the time are too preoccupied with the effort to secure what they have to protest at what they’re denied. And those who protest on their behalf are regarded as putting at increased risk whatever little the dispossessed still possess. And so it goes on.

Scotland seems to have more than its share of meekness. We’re awash with humility. Where apathy hasn’t sapped the spirit complacency has. Here’s tae us! Wh’s like us! Nane, it seems when it comes to turning an endless series of cheeks to be slapped by the British political elite. Nane when it comes to being manipulated. Nane when it comes to being contentedly misled.

Only a week or two after being told that action to restore Scotland’s independence would have to wait indefinitely while Nicola Sturgeon dealt with Scotland’s portion of the coronavirus pandemic and its economic aftermath we are now being assured that she has made an explicit commitment to indyref2 in SNP 2021 manifesto. She didn’t. I listened to the radio interview. I heard no “explicit commitment”. And even if she had made an explicit commitment as claimed the commitment would have been meaningless because it is it would be a commitment to a process that cannot possibly achieve what is promised.

But none of this matters to the meek. There’s a majority for Yes in the polls. Nicola Sturgeon has achieved celebrity status. Now there’s an explicit commitment to indyref2 in SNP 2021 manifesto. This means that independence has never been closer. And this proximity to the goal can only be jeopardised by pointing out that there is a huge difference between something being close and it being reachable. Nobody wants to hear that things they celebrate as signs of approaching success don’t actually relate to success in any way at all. None of it satisfies the criteria of necessity and sufficiency. What they are clinging to may not be worthless, but it isn’t worth what they’ve allowed themselves to be convinced it’s worth. It isn’t worth enough.

A majority for Yes in the polls is a nice thing to have. But it doesn’t bring independence any closer unless there is the means to translate that public support into a formal declaration of the will of the people. A popular leader is a nice thing to have. But it doesn’t bring independence any closer unless that leader is committed not merely to the concept of independence but to the course of action required to achieve it. The promise of a new referendum is a nice thing to have. But it doesn’t bring independence any closer unless the promise can be honoured and honoured in a way which will make the referendum a step towards the restoration of Scotland’s independence.

The meek are content with what they have. The meek are easily manipulated into believing what they have to be more than what it is. The meek are easily convinced that the biggest threat to what they have comes from those who point out that what they have is an emperor in underpants. The sheeple are being herded into the abattoir and bleating protests at anybody who tries to warn them of what lies ahead.

I’ll finish with another quote which should make the meek think, but probably won’t.

The English are mentioned in the Bible; Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Mark Twain


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17 thoughts on “The fate of sheeple

  1. Another great post Peter, but I cannot see them getting the backbone to change it and those in charge are far to happy and content with what they have to upset the apple cart. Something will need to change for us to get independence.

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  2. I may of course be entirely wrong (he claims meekly), but I feel that by dealing with the pandemic etc. competently, in stark contrast to the mess and confusion in England, the SG and NS are only further proving to any remaining doubters, that Scotland is entirely capable of functioning as an independent nation. May I remind you of the sign said to hang in Wild West saloons, “Please don’t shoot the pianist, he’s doing his best!”

    Btw. nowhere in your piece as far as I can see, do you present your own chosen route to independence.

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    1. “Btw. nowhere in your piece as far as I can see, do you present your own chosen route to independence.”

      Why would I? That’s not what the piece is about.

      How about you explain the process by which “dealing with the pandemic” leads to the restoration of Scotland’s independence. I won’t hold my breath.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No need to. It seems to me that by handling the present emergencies competently, “doing the day-job” if you like, and incidentally showing up the English approach as rank amateur in contrast, the SNP administration are demonstrating how they are fully fit to run an independent nation. This is surely important as there is a great deal of political inertia that must be overcome. Many people still think of the SNP as foolhardy hotheads and rebels. They have to demonstrate that they are a responsible sober administration, while at the same time retaining their fundamental drive and passion. Admittedly a difficult task but you can offer no alternative it would seem?

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      2. I do not believe Mr Bell has ever made a secret of the strategy he proposes. Be that as it may, undoubtedly NS and SG are turning heads and by their relative competence encouraging a degree of realignment in voting preference. But the SNP hierarchy is doing a lot of other stuff too, which is not doing the reputation of the party any favours among those of us who believe the independence movement is a great deal bigger than the SNP.

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      3. Does the SNP/SG really need to do very much beyond being competent at this point in time, seeing as WM are busy shooting themselves in the foot. They are doing the work for us, busy discrediting themselves … no?

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      4. Ting, well according to Freddie Mercury there was ‘A kind of Magic’
        Maybe we just have the wrong kind and been looking in the wrong place and with the wrong people

        Liked by 1 person

      5. How about you explain the process by which “dealing with the pandemic” leads to the restoration of Scotland’s independence. I won’t hold my breath”.

        Because it leads people to believe their country is more than capable of governing themselves and, subsequently, to supporting it. It’s a strange concept I know, but apparently you need people to believe in independence before if can be achieved.

        ““Dealing with the pandemic” will not lead to independence on its own but it is a key component in the real world.

        But I am now done with the on-line world of cyber-nuttery. Barred from Wings for punting your route map to Indy Mr Bell, being critical of the “locals” rather flimsy alternatives, not accepting the Rev as the messiah and seeing the pus and bile being brewed on that site spill out onto others, I feel the cause of independence is being undermined, if not destroyed, just as it looks like winning the day. It is too frustrating and depressing and is having an adverse effect on my own well being. So fuck ’em.

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  3. Seems to me a self defeating argument .
    The people are SO MEEK content with a Netflix subscription and a Asda delivery, yet these sheeple are worthy of sacrifice to get them formed into an Independent country.

    where presumably they will gaze at a screen and lick their lips as the Supermarket delivery van approaches.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The expectation now is that there will be an “Indyref2 commitment in SNP 2021 manifesto”. Indeed, Pete Wishart, having included the image tweet of the National headline “Indy Ref2 WILL be in 2021 manifesto” twits “You betcha…..”. And then there’s Sturgeon on twitter, oh well, and Murrell, oh well, not yet.

    The thing to do is not to deny it, or to disbeleive them, or to say they don’t mean it, but to build it up so absolutely definitely as a fact beyond contradiction THEY HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO CHOICE.

    There’s nothing meek about propaganda, it’s a constant drip drip drip that gouges out glens, and we’re the drips. Repeat after me:

    “Sturgeon has promised that there will be one and only one thing in the 2021 manifesto – Indy Ref 2”.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Putting the SNP’s commitment “beyond contradiction” is precisely what I wan’t to do. But not this ‘commitment’. Because it’s a commitment to nothing. As a commitment, it’s completely meaningless. It’s not enough.

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  5. Condescending pedantry Mr Bell? The point stands. A competent response to the pandemic has lead to a belief among the Scottish public that Scotland is capable of governing itself. That’s a good thing that makes independence more likely. No one has claimed it is a “process” that will lead to independence on its own. That’s just an inexplicable straw man thrown at marconatrix.

    Why is there this growing tendency among Indy supporters to subject other Indies to friendly fire? I preferred the “old days” when you knew who the enemy was, they were in front of you and those around you were your firm allies. Nowadays, those taking a pop at Indies are more likely to be other Indies as internecine warfare rips the movement apart, while unionists look on in incredulous jubilation.

    As I said before, it’s just too depressing.

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