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NOTES ON GEORGE ORWELL ON DICKENS

May 22, 2013

WITH A DASH OF SPENGLER

A possible division of men or within men themselves of the “hedonistic, common man type” that satisfies his need through satisfaction; and those who need to “never be satisfied” as their only form of satisfaction.

Or in other words: there is an ever present form of bondage over people in life as the attainment of only satisfaction of human need-especially and most perilously-when those needs are understood as such exclusively by the individual him or herself.

And the peril is in satisfaction itself.

But this is the historical situation: that, through the concentration of technical-scientific capacity-that itself rests on the power of money as holy satisfier of satisfiers – the life mode of the second, of the never satisfied as satisfaction, has been driven from the face of the earth, so to speak; that consumer society has crowned the first man emperor who wields as scepter that everyman be himself emperor through the satisfaction of his own personal needs, too.

The feel-good emperor and his host of common man kings as vassals.

And in this system, the only place for those that would be never satisfied as satisfaction, is a job as life mechanism that only internally-secretly and most cryptically-may they scorn and permanently defecate on as political-vital posture.

For it is the man who would not have himself crowned that lost the war and was vanquished by the other, back, perhaps when it really mattered-back in pre WWII history when this closet struggle I describe existed on the surface as the great struggle of our times-of all times-between socialism and capitalism, between individual dignity and dignity through satisfaction, order and the serene security of a potted plant or flower.

And ours is the life mode of photosynthesis-the application of water and artificial light over an organism that is permanently fixed in its place and soil and that works to hold tight to its 70 odd year life span, designed, through its childhood and education to live just this life.

As long it persists-paradoxically-in a life as strife and purposeless movement in its professional activity at whatever level, so that it can afford access to the water and light being in fact applied unfailingly to it by the corporate greenhouse it actually lives in and that it has never left-or ever will.

And the step now to be taken is, simply, that the Emperor of common man emperors and the system they form, understand itself for what it now is: a plant with the right-of course-to be a plant, but the gives oxygen-and some pleasure in the form of decoration, no doubt-to the self-circumspect, higher plane individual who lives in need as a vital need itself-and who never would see that need removed form his or her existence; and who does not, therefore, aspire to a life of full satisfaction.

Because, aside from never being truly attainable, it is death itself.

If you are in fact a person, and not a fern or petunia.

And the emperor with no clothes knows that you know that he knows that he in fact stands naked before you.

And still he persists in his feeble theater of power.

Might as well enjoy the show.

(Never say no to a few 20 dollar bills in your garter belt, I always say!)

_______________

Essay by Orwell: CHARLES DICKENS (1940)

http://georgeorwellnovels.com/essays/charles-dickens/

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