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Part 2 Chapter 10

I’ve been waiting for this. This is more of what I assumed You were promising me when You told me that Book 2 would deal with planetary issues on a global scale. So, can we begin our look at our human politics by my asking you what may seem like an elementary question?

 

No questions are undeserving or unworthy. Ques-tions are like people.

 

Ah, good one. Okay then, let me ask: is it wrong to under-take a foreign policy based on your country’s own vested interests?

 

No. First, from My standpoint, nothing is “wrong.” But I understand how you use the term, so I will speak within the context of your vocabulary. I’ll use the term “wrong” to mean “that which is not serving you, given who and what you choose to be.” This is how I’ve always used the terms “right” and “wrong” with you; it is always within this context, for, in truth, there is no Right and Wrong.

So, within that context, no, it is not wrong to base foreign policy decisions on vested interest considerations. What is wrong is to pretend that you’re not doing so.

This most countries do, of course. They take ac-tion—or fail to take action—for one set of reasons, then give as a rationale another set of reasons.

 

Why? Why do countries do that?

 

Because governments know that if people under-stood the real reasons for most foreign policy decisions, the people would not support them.

 

This is true of governments everywhere. There are very few governments which do not deliberately mis-lead their people. Deception is part of government, for few people would choose to be governed the way they are governed—few would choose to be governed at all—unless government convinced them that its deci-sions were for their own good.

This is a hard convincing, for most people plainly see the foolishness in government. So government must lie to at least try to hold the people’s loyalty. Govern-ment is the perfect portrayer of the accuracy of the axiom that if you lie big enough, long enough, the lie becomes the “truth.”

People in power must never let the public know how they came to power—nor all that they’ve done and are willing to do to stay there.

 

Truth and politics do not and cannot mix because politics is the art of saying only what needs to be said—and saying it in just the right way—in order to achieve a desired end.

Not all politics are bad, but the art of politics is a practical art. It recognizes with great candor the psy-chology of most people. It simply notices that most people operate out of self-interest. So politics is the way that people of power seek to convince you that their self-interest is your own.

Governments understand self-interest. That is why governments are very good at designing programs which give things to people.

Originally, governments had very limited functions. Their purpose was simply to “preserve and protect.” Then someone added “provide.” When governments began to be the people’s provider as well as the people’s protector, governments started creating society, rather than preserving it.

 

But aren’t governments simply doing what the people want? Don’t governments merely provide the mechanism through which the people provide for themselves on a societal scale?

For instance, in America we place a very high value on the dignity of human life, individual freedom, the importance of opportunity, the sanctity of children. So we’ve made laws and asked government to create programs to provide income for the elderly, so they can retain their dignity past their earning years; to ensure equal employment and housing opportunities for all people—even those who are different from us, or with whose lifestyle we don’t agree; to guarantee, through child labor laws, that a nation’s children don’t become a nation’s slaves, and that no family with children goes without the basics of a life with dignity—food, clothing, shelter.

 

Such laws reflect well upon your society. Yet, in providing for people’s needs, you must be careful not to rob them of their greatest dignity: the exercise of personal power, individual creativity, and the single-minded ingenuity which allows people to notice that they can provide for themselves. It is a delicate balance which must be struck. You people seem to know only how to go from one extreme to the other. Either you want government to “do it all” for the people, or you want to kill all government programs and erase all government laws tomorrow.

 

Yes, and the problem is that there are so many who can’t provide for themselves in a society which gives the best life opportunities routinely to those holding the “right” creden-tials (or, perhaps, not holding the “wrong” ones); who can’t provide for themselves in a nation where landlords won’t rent to large families, companies won’t promote women, justice is too often a product of status, access to preventive health care is limited to those with sufficient income, and where many other discriminations and inequalities exist on a massive scale.

 

Governments, then, must replace the conscience of the people?

 

No. Governments are the people’s conscience, outspoken. It is through governments that people seek, hope, and deter-mine to correct the ills of society.

 

That is well said. Yet, I repeat, you must take care not to smother yourself in laws trying to guarantee people a chance to breathe!

You cannot legislate morality. You cannot mandate equality.

What is needed is a shift of collective consciousness, not an enforcer of collective conscience.

Behavior (and all laws, and all government pro-grams) must spring from Beingness, must be a true reflection of Who You Are.

 

The laws of our society do reflect who we are! They say to everyone, “This is how it is here in America. This is who Americans are.”

 

In the best of cases, perhaps. But more often than not, your laws are the announcements of what those in power think you should be but are not.

 

The “elitist few” instruct the “ignorant many” through the law.

 

Precisely.

 

What’s wrong with that? If there are a few of the brightest and best among us willing to look at the problems of society, of the world, and propose solutions, does that not serve the many?

 

It depends on the motives of those few. And on their clarity. Generally, nothing serves “the many” more than letting them govern themselves.

 

Anarchy. It’s never worked.

 

You cannot grow and become great when you are constantly being told what to do by government.

 

It could be argued that government—by that I mean the law by which we’ve chosen to govern ourselves—is a reflection of society’s greatness (or tack thereof), that great societies pass great laws.

 

And very few of them. For in great societies, very few laws are necessary.

 

Still, truly lawless societies are primitive societies, where “might is right.” Laws are man’s attempt to level the playing field; to ensure that what is truly right will prevail, weakness or strength notwithstanding. Without codes of behavior upon which we mutually agree, how could we coexist?

 

I am not suggesting a world with no codes of behav-ior, no agreements. I am suggesting that your agree-ments and codes be based on a higher understanding and a grander definition of self-interest.

What most laws actually do say is what the most powerful among you have as their vested interest.

Let’s just look at one example. Smoking.

Now the law says you cannot grow and use a certain kind of plant, hemp, because, so government tells you,

it is not good for you.

Yet the same government says it is all right to grow and use another kind of plant, tobacco, not because it is good for you (indeed, the government itself says it is bad), but, presumably, because you’ve always done so.

The real reason that the first plant is outlawed and the second is not has nothing to do with health. It has to do with economics. And that is to say, power.

Your laws, therefore, do not reflect what your soci-ety thinks of itself, and wishes to be—your laws reflect where the power is.

 

No fair. You picked a situation where the contradictions are apparent. Most situations are not like that.

 

On the contrary. Most are.

 

Then what is the solution?

 

To have as few laws—which are really limits—as possible.

The reason the first weed is outlawed is only osten-sibly about health. The truth is, the first weed is no more addictive and no more a health risk than cigarettes or alcohol, both of which are protected by the law. Why is it then not allowed? Because if it were grown, half the cotton growers, nylon and rayon manufacturers, and timber products people in the world would go out of business.

Hemp happens to be one of the most useful, strong-est, toughest, longest-lasting materials on your planet. You cannot produce a better fiber for clothes, a stronger substance for ropes, an easier-to-grow-and-harvest source for pulp. You cut down hundreds of thousands of trees per year to give yourself Sunday papers, so that you can read about the decimation of the world’s forests. Hemp could provide you with millions of Sun-day papers without cutting down one tree. Indeed, it could substitute for so many resource materials, at one-tenth the cost.

 

And that is the catch. Somebody loses money if this miraculous plant—which also has extraordinary me-dicinal properties, incidentally—is allowed to be grown. And that is why marijuana is illegal in your country.

It is the same reason you have taken so long to mass produce electric cars, provide affordable, sensible health care, or use solar heat and solar power in every home.

You’ve had the wherewithal and the technology to produce all of these things for years. Why, then, do you not have them? Look to see who would lose money if you did. There you will find your answer.

This is the Great Society of which you are so proud? Your “great society” has to be dragged, kicking and screaming, to consider the common good. Whenever common good or collective good is mentioned, every-one yells “communism!” In your society, if providing for the good of the many does not produce a huge profit

for someone, the good of the many is more often than not ignored.

This is true not only in your country, but also around the world. The basic question facing humankind, there-fore, is: Can self-interest ever be replaced by the best interests, the common interest, of humankind? If so, how?

 

In the United States you have tried to provide for the common interest, the best interest, through laws. You have failed miserably. Your nation is the richest, most powerful on the Earth, and it has one of the highest infant mortality rates. Why? Because poor people cannot afford quality pre-natal and post-natal care—and your society is profit driven. I cite this as just one example of your miserable failure. The fact that your babies are dying at a higher rate than most other industrialized nations in the world should bother you. It does not. That says volumes about where your priorities are as a society. Other countries provide for the sick and needy, the elderly and infirm. You provide for the rich and wealthy, the influential and the well-placed. Eighty-five percent of retired Ameri-cans live in poverty. Many of these older Americans, and most people on low income, use the local hospital emer-gency room as their “family doctor,” seeking medical treatment under only the most dire of circumstances, and receiving virtually no preventive health maintenance care at all.

There’s no profit, you see, in people who have little to spend . . . they’ve worn out their usefulness . . .

And this is your great society—

 

You make things sound pretty bad. Yet America has done more for the underprivileged and the unfortunate—both here and abroad—then any other nation on Earth.

 

America has done much, that is observably true. Yet do you know that as a percentage of its gross national product, the United States provides proportionately less for foreign aid than many much smaller countries? The point is that, before you allow yourself to become too self-congratulatory, perhaps you should look at the world around you. For if this is the best your world can do for the less fortunate, you all have much to learn.

You live in a wasteful, decadent society. You’ve built into virtually everything you make what your engineers call “planned obsolescence.” Cars cost three times as much and last a third as long.

 

Clothes fall apart after the tenth wearing. You put chemicals in your food so they can stay on the shelf longer, even if it means your stay on the planet is shorter. You support, encour-age, and enable sports teams to pay obscene salaries for ridiculous efforts, while teachers, ministers, and researchers fighting to find a cure for the diseases which kill you go begging for money. You throw away more food each day in your nation’s supermarkets, restaurants, and homes than it would take to feed half the world.

Yet this is not an indictment, merely an observation. And not of the United States alone, for the attitudes that sicken the heart are epidemic around the world.

The underprivileged everywhere must grovel and scrimp to merely stay alive, while the few in power protect and increase great hoards of cash, lie on sheets of silk, and each morning twist bathroom fixtures made of gold. And as emaciated children of ribs and skin die in the arms of weeping mothers, their country’s “lead-ers” engage in political corruptions which keep donated food stuffs from reaching the starving masses.

No one seems to have the power to alter these conditions, yet the truth is, power is not the problem. No one seems to have the will.

And thus it will always be, so long as no one sees another’s plight as his own.

 

Well, why don’t we? How can we see these atrocities daily and allow them to continue?

 

Because you do not care. It is a lack of caring. The entire planet faces a crisis of consciousness. You must decide whether you simply care for each other.

 

It seems such a pathetic question to have to ask. Why can’t we love the members of our own family?

 

You do love the members of your own family. You simply have a very limited view of who your family members are.

You do not consider yourself part of the human family, and so the problems of the human family are not your own.

 

How can the peoples of the Earth change their world view? That depends on what you want to change it to.

 

How can we eliminate more of the pain, more of the suffering?

 

By eliminating all separations between you. By constructing a new model of the world. By holding it within the framework of a new idea.

 

Which is?

 

Which is going to be a radical departure from the present world view.

Presently, you see the world—we’re speaking geopolitically now—as a collection of nation states, each sovereign, separate and independent of each other.

The internal problems of these independent nation states are, by and large, not considered the problems of the group as a whole-unless and until they affect the group as a whole (or the most powerful members of that group).

The group as a whole reacts to the conditions and problems of individual states based on the vested inter-ests of the larger group. If no one in the larger group has anything to lose, conditions in an individual state could go to hell, and no one would much care.

Thousands can starve to death each year, hundreds can die in civil war, despots can pillage the countryside, dictators and their armed thugs can rape, plunder, and murder, regimes can strip the people of basic human rights—and the rest of you will do nothing. It is, you say, an “internal problem.”

 

But, when your interests are threatened there, when your investments, your security, your quality of life is on the line, you rally your nation, and try to rally your world behind you, and rush in where angels fear to tread.

You then tell the Big Lie—claiming you are doing what you are doing for humanitarian reasons, to help the oppressed peoples of the world, when the truth is, you are simply protecting your own interests.

The proof of this is that where you do not have interests, you do not have concern.

 

The world’s political machinery operates on self-interest. What else is new?

 

Something will have to be new if you wish your world to change. You must begin to see someone else’s interests as your own. This will happen only when you reconstruct your global reality and govern yourselves accordingly.

 

Are you talking about a one-world government?

 

lam.



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