Tuesday, 8 November 2016

A Moulting System: The Procedure that Renews the System's Image

Barak Obama: Considered a failed president

Almost every single time an American president's term nears its end, he becomes an object of both vilification and ridicule in the media. There are times when this happens to such an extreme degree and in such a manner it confuses rather than elucidates.

Many simply experience it as unfair and inapropriate or that it shows a touch of neurosis or simple bias on the part of those doing it.

The one thing that becomes clear from the undeserved nature it happens is it doesn't just happen because so much has gone wrong under the incubent's watch and people are (finally) reacting to this by dispaying their disaproval in text, albeit inapropaiately sometimes, but because it is an essential prodedure for the system to undergo: it is time for the system to moult.

There are a number of presidential terms when the moulting procedure is more pronounced than others, giving us a very clear example of this phenomenon, assuring us that we are not making things up. They include Lyndon Johnson who came to be reviled for his escalation of the Vietnam War.

Ronald Reagan too came under exceptional fire during his administration's last days. Attacks on his persona, however, only climaxed in ridicule. At the most, he was considered a simple version of Doctor Strangelove.

Nixon, depicted as the scourge of the hippies, was openly reviled because he was considered the carpet-bomber of South-East Asia, the dark hand behind Watergate, the murderous crook, etc.

George W. Bush is perhaps the unluckiest of them all in the extent derision of his persona went. Questions asked about his intelligence regularly materialised in articles in mainstream media, some of which dared lead with titles such as "Is George W. Bush really as dumb as he looks"?

Nostradamus: original portrait by his son Cesar

He was nicknamed Dubya, which is linked to the rare use of the word dubious (dubieux/dubieuse in French) by Nostradamus in a prediction of future events that experts proclaimed to refer to George W. Bush, earning him the epithet "Village Idiot", a name that was used with relish as the campaign to vilify him reached fever pitch.

And now it is evidently Obama's turn.

A debate broadcast on BBC World News on the 20th of June 2016 titled "Yes, he can! No, he couldn't! Obama is a failed president", started off with the following passage:

Eight years ago the banners said 'Behold the new Kennedy!' Tears flowed and expectations were sky-high as Obama spoke on election night surrounded by his young family. Here was America's saviour, the man who could overcome the legacy of slavery, heal a divided nation, even reclaim its moral leadership. In fact, Obama's record has been one of failure. Once the world's policeman, today America is seen as weak. Tyrants know that Obama rarely exercises power and they have taken full advantage of that fact. Putin has rolled the tanks into part of Ukraine while China flexes its muscles in the South China Sea. Islamic State rose to ugly prominence on his watch, and Obama did little to stop it. He also let Assad get away with gassing his people even though he had warned such action would be crossing his 'red line'. Traditional Middle East allies such as Israel and Saudi Arabia are rightly dismayed. At home, the president has been just as limp. Some critics go so far as to say that he prepared the ground for Donald Trump, by failing to reassure Republican voters who feel vulnerable to terrorist attacks and not doing enough about uncontrolled immigration. Equally he has disappointed Democrats by his failure to counter the gun crime epidemic, and African Americans have gained little stature or pride from his time in the White House. Who would have imagined #BlackLivesMatter taking off under the first black president of the United States? Far from being an inspiring leader, Obama has turned out to be a sensitive loner, temperamentally unsuited to the hustle and bustle of power.

The negative headlines, or broad sides at his administration, have increased as the presidential elections approach. Below is an example of such a headline, pasted with leading passage:
U.S. Ranks 41st In Press Freedom Index Thanks To '(Obama's) War On Whistleblowers'
April 20, 2016 · 5:37 PM
The U.S. is ranked 41 out of 180 countries in Reporters Without Borders' World Press Freedom Index, which measures the "level of freedom of information in 180 countries." According to the organization, the U.S. moved from 49 in 2015 to 41 this year, though it warned that the "relative improvement by comparison hides overall negative trends." Citing the U.S. government's "war on whistleblowers who leak information about its surveillance activities, spying and foreign operations, especially those linked to counter-terrorism," and the country's lack of a "shield law" that would allow journalists to protect confidential sources...

There are even articles in which, it seems, the president has a go at his own self, such as the one below:

President Obama: Libya aftermath 'worst mistake' of presidency
11 April 2016
US President Barack Obama has said failing to prepare for the aftermath of the ousting of Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi was the worst mistake of his presidency. Mr Obama was answering a series of questions on the highs and lows of his time in office on Fox News. He said, however, that intervening in Libya had been "the right thing to do". The US and other countries carried out strikes designed to protect civilians during the 2011 uprising.

All of this is pure moulting and Obama, considered by some to be the puppet that ties its own strings, is just being himself as usual.

O'Brein as Big Brother

To understand just why it is essential for the system to "moult" one has first to remember that presidents are not the ones who call the shots in the dominant system. The finger of blame for what is going wrong cannot be placed on the president. It is always the fault of the key players within the system, those who are the real leaders. The system, however, uses a psychology to cleans itself of an accrued image that is best expressed by a passage from George Orwel's "1984":

Big Brother is the guise in which the party chooses to exhibit itself to the world. His function is to act as a focusing point for love, fear, and reverence, emotions which are more easily felt towards an individual than towards an organisation.

Moulting (read shading of the old skin) is how the dominant system renews its image in the eyes of the local and international populace at large, and it is usually possible to know from parts of what the leading media says incubents have failed to do what the system is not happy with and what it intends to change in the years to come.

Moulting is a way of preventing or averting revolt or revolution. It is a way of attaching the wrongs that are systemic to an individual, allowing them to fade away with the mortal into the past while the system forges ahead in time.

No comments: