Comparison of the Society of Animal Farm and America Today
Length: 810 words (2.3 double-spaced pages)
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Humankind has always had a thirst for power; over its peers, environment and spiritual beliefs. To quench this thirst it has gone as far as genocide; but has often employed more subtle techniques, such as mind control. In today’s socio-economical and political worlds, mind control plays a key role in dictating tastes and lifestyles; as well as controlling political thoughts, views, and people’s understanding of the world. It is accomplished using various channels to condition people’s thinking. Publicity and advertisement campaigns saturate people with products, broadcasting over radio, and television which in itself is a prime example. Many religions employ mind control, conditioning their followers to obey without questioning.
With nearly global use of the television; it has become a preferred method with which to influence and regulate people’s thinking, creating an unreal and idealistic, hypothetical reality which people strive to emulate. This is accomplished through shows and movies; the majority of which emphasize a perfect world, entirely free of corruption and poverty; where everyone is physically attractive, emotionally stable, and economically wealthy; a distorted reflection of our own world. This leads real people to attempt to create this imaginary world, only to fail; thus generating in themselves a sense of unworthiness, which in turn prompts them to try harder, to stop being individuals and become uniform.
Another controlling method that is diffused through television, radio and written publications; is any reported information about world politics and news. Powerful political groups narrow people’s views of what is going on around them by tainting and twisting information to their own device. They decide what to say and when to say it, revealing as much or little information as desired, in ‘befitting’ instances; thus enabling them to hide information they consider deleterious to themselves, from the public. It also permits them to depict opponents in overly negative terms.
Similar to news in its widespread marketing, publicity is another method in which people’s minds are reprogrammed, this time by the merchandisers. Publicity attempts to ingrain concepts and transmit political and commercial messages into the consumer’s minds, in an endeavor to make them buy specific goods. They do this by constantly exposing the people to the products through their repeated displayal on various mediums. Billboards and posters can be found on most highways, and in nearly all cities around the world. Consequently they push ideas at the consumer any time he/she travels on foot, by car, or even uses the public transport systems.
Television and radio are inundated with publicity, approximately every ten minutes for two minute intervals, as it pays for their programming; merchandisers create memorable slogans and jingles to encourage the consumer’s memory of the product. These methods are complemented by the esthetically presentation of this information, the goal of which being to create a sense of need in the individual. This is often accomplished by associating the product with some aspect desirable to the consumer, such as material wealth, physical beauty, sexuality or being an individual (while all it’s actually doing is promoting uniformity).
Lastly mankind’s spirituality has been used by many religions and especially sects, to brainwash his mind, commanding him to obey or suffer the ‘wrath of God’, or ‘eternal damnation’. Many religions in an attempt to control, encourage helplessness of the individual, and total reliance on the specific religion; forbidding them from contact with members of other religions, and the reading of opposing ‘heretical’ texts. This is exemplified in the modern day conflicts in Northern Ireland, where Catholics and Protestants fight one another, killing each other over differing religious opinions.
All the above controlling groups are similar to ‘the Party’, in their desire to shape people’s thoughts to their own device and to place specific elements in a desirable light. They are different to the Party in that, they do not posses complete control over the people’s minds, there are still many people who see the above situations for what it really is: manipulation. In the book very few could see that, and those who could were powerless against it.
To be evil is to be morally bad, wicked; and to classify something as morally bad, it has to be compared to the moral standards of the entity in question. Thus evil is a relative term. I believe that none of these groups are evil, I do not even believe that the party was evil, only afraid. For were we to ask the Party’s members whether they believed in that which they were doing, I presume that they would respond unequivocally, “Yes!”. They were afraid of losing power over the people, afraid of allowing people the right to choose, for fear that they would choose differently, becoming individuals. They were just as afraid as some of the above groups, although they were less subtle in their ‘thought purges’.