The world is a college of corporations, inexorably determined by the immutable bylaws of business

The movie Network was released in 1976, which, amazingly enough, was 34 years ago at this point.  It is a great film, with great performances, but it’s important because it laid the corporate elite’s cards on the table for all of us to see.

Those cards make it absolutely clear that they don’t care about you.  They don’t care about America, or England, or New York, or London, or Afghanistan, or anything at all, really, except for the consolidation of power and wealth.  If a coup is required in an oil-producing country, it will happen.  If the invasion of a strategically located Central American country is deemed necessary, it will take place.  If an excuse is needed for the launching of a full scale war in a South Eastern Asian country, then a phony attack will be staged in order to rally the support of the masses.  If the destruction of America’s working class and productive capacity is required, then so mote it be.  And all of this occurs for the benefit of a small group of international elites, who continue to increase their profits and consolidate their power even now, as the world’s middle class is squarely in their cross-hairs.

And if it seems to you that among all of the recent calamity, that the rich and powerful just keep getting more rich and more powerful, don’t worry, you’re not crazy.  THEY ARE getting more rich and more powerful, and it’s all happening at your expense.  This is the plan, and this has been the plan for quite a while now.  As I said above, you don’t matter.  Countries don’t matter.  Profits matter, and tightening the control grid matters.  This is why the “domestic terrorism” meme has exploded recently.  Dissent must be demonized.  After all, they can’t rely on apathy forever, and sooner or later, a good number of people are going to figure out that “accidents” like the wealth-redistributing financial collapse aren’t accidents at all, and the masses are going to want their pound of flesh.  This is actually beginning to happen now, but apparently it’s a far worse crime to be pissed off at the murderous assholes who are ruining the world than it is to be a murderous asshole who is ruining the world.  At least that’s the message we’re being fed on a daily basis.

So anyway, the movie Network was a great piece of art, but it was also the most honest portrayal of our world that Hollywood has ever produced.

Here’s the most telling scene, complete with the script to read along with.

Arthur Jensen: You have meddled with the primal forces of nature, Mr. Beale, and I won’t have it!! Is that clear?! You think you’ve merely stopped a business deal. That is not the case. The Arabs have taken billions of dollars out of this country, and now they must put it back! It is ebb and flow, tidal gravity! It is ecological balance!

You are an old man who thinks in terms of nations and peoples. There are no nations. There are no peoples. There are no Russians. There are no Arabs. There are no third worlds. There is no West. There is only one holistic system of systems, one vast and immane, interwoven, interacting, multivariate, multinational dominion of dollars. Petro-dollars, electro-dollars, multi-dollars, reichsmarks, rins, rubles, pounds, and shekels.

It is the international system of currency which determines the totality of life on this planet. That is the natural order of things today. That is the atomic and subatomic and galactic structure of things today! And YOU have meddled with the primal forces of nature, and YOU WILL ATONE!

Am I getting through to you, Mr. Beale?

You get up on your little twenty-one inch screen and howl about America and democracy. There is no America. There is no democracy. There is only IBM and ITT and AT&T and DuPont, Dow, Union Carbide, and Exxon. Those are the nations of the world today.

What do you think the Russians talk about in their councils of state — Karl Marx? They get out their linear programming charts, statistical decision theories, minimax solutions, and compute the price-cost probabilities of their transactions and investments, just like we do.

We no longer live in a world of nations and ideologies, Mr. Beale. The world is a college of corporations, inexorably determined by the immutable bylaws of business. The world is a business, Mr. Beale. It has been since man crawled out of the slime. And our children will live, Mr. Beale, to see that perfect world in which there’s no war or famine, oppression or brutality — one vast and ecumenical holding company, for whom all men will work to serve a common profit, in which all men will hold a share of stock, all necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredom amused.

And I have chosen you, Mr. Beale, to preach this evangel.

Howard Beale: Why me?

Arthur Jensen: Because you’re on television, dummy. Sixty million people watch you every night of the week, Monday through Friday.

Indeed.

Incidentally, the Howard Beale character is assassinated at the end of the movie.  Go figure, right?  Mom always said don’t meddle with the primal forces of nature.

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