What emotions take queues from the brain’s primitive parts? Which colors attribute to these vibes? Without intellect, these feeling fall subject to who? When a population and its leaders fall victim to primitive feelings, who also falls?
A person counts fear as real until it can be examined. If the thing feared cannot be examined by the individual, trust becomes vested in the state to define and resolve. The state, therefore, holds the power to extinguish fear or inflame it. Genuine action and enlightenment solve actual and unfounded fears. Manipulation, deception and obfuscation exacerbate fear of an unknown.
The media often leads with stories which scream hyperbolic but exist rare in this world. Media confects scary medical facts from myth and conjecture. Predators portrayed as slick and devious, offenders in sophisticated, rehabilitative lockups, documented from questionable sources or phony experts. Generators of fear get what they want via mindless reaction. National scares morph into trends. Millennial fever burns up the treetops of sane analysis. Profiteers love the slaughter. Minority politicians count majority votes. Fear wins over freedom most of the time these days in this place.
Gated communities, background checks, drug testing loom ore the land. Common social ills become crimes. Punishments plague the poor only and severely. Everyday life sees every citizen as a possible perpetrator of every possible crime. By exploiting vulnerabilities, government at all levels now intrudes on all of us most of the time. Freedom from fear comes not from an overweening government security state but from individuals working individually and together against the real and imminent perpetrators of crime.
Hatred nurtured by experience or upbringing becomes the DNA of a population segment. Something unjust, real or imagined sets hate in motion. It takes a village to keep hatred’s embers burning through generations. When hatred stokes the minds of children early with stories and rites, bystanders can do little to lower the temperature or slow momentum.
Upbringing alone does not present as the only breeder of haters. Media, mentioned above as a fear generator, employs hate to sell papers. Community, through mobility of place and employment, thins and has less impact than it did in the 1950’s. As community thins to the point of collapse, the pillars of hatred erect and thicken and overshadow good sense. As divisive cable news and websites erode common bonds, dignity and mutual interests disintegrate with those bonds. The victors be the haters and the haters be us.
Greed breeds greed. The way one makes money should be more important than making money itself. Money can be made the old-fashioned way by cheating, lying or robbing. But there is profit in fear and hate. Race bating keeps minorities in their ghetto and in their low wage jobs. The big bad wolf needs to be combatted, so security must be increased, and evil must be hunted down. Both the suppression of minorities and the enhancement of security cost money. Money is made on these overemphasized emotions.
The foundational myth that anyone with good idea and strong will can make it in America has been replaced by the reality that American capitalism evolved into a dog-eat-dog system. As far as social advancement, class here offers less mobility than in history’s societies of more rigid class structures. America must jettison the thinking that government is the problem, that corporate responsibility holds no allegiance but to shareholders and that making money adheres to no moral code. Republicans no longer nurture balanced budget and investment in public goods. Nurturing now a no-tax philosophy and letting things take their own course without government interference ends poorly. Supply-side assumptions yield stagnation – leading to workers giving up because hope holds meaning only to the fool. Productive economies treat all people equally and reward them accordingly. Sharing must exist alongside rewards. Profit sharing, antitrust enforcement and limiting special interest money can replenish the stock of social capital.
The colors of the aforementioned emotions are red, black and green. The American landscape has always had a red scare: from redcoats, to redskins, to communist and socialist. Black is the color of racism in the United States…now to include brown for emigrating populations. Our money is green, and we envy those who have it, no matter how they make it. Big money is in racism and fear of socialism. While the population barricades against fear and arms for invasion, the manipulators of such make money from it and lose no sleep.