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zoeb555 zoeb555 22-25, F 13 Answers Dec 23, 2013 in Politics

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"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary." - H. L. Mencken<br />
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The downside of a democracy is that in order to keep the people in line and the politicians secure in their positions, the politicians must always ensure that the public lives in fear.<br />
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Of course, sometimes they make errors. Right now they created enough bad laws that a large minority, and perhaps a majority of Americans are coming to the realization that the greatest danger is the politicians themselves. Of course, that presents other real dangers: some may see that as an opening for a better society in which the role of government is diminished or eliminated, but others will want to install a dictator in a vain attempt to establish security.

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Aptly put, and an appropriate quote. I agree. When I think about this for long enough.. My mind takes me to a dark conclusion ...'perhaps this is the natural order of things/the way it is supposed to be.' Perhaps citizens don't particularly desire to know everything, perhaps they subconsciously crave the control of the government. But then again, consistent fear seems less than ideal.

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Fear seems necessary for the survival of the State, but not for the survival of humanity. There have been many peaceful, stateless societies - and some still persist within the official borders of existing states. These seldom seem to create a State for themselves, but where they become governed it is usually through conquest.

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using threats to control the masses is the lazy way of controlling a 'democracy'

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That's approximately where my line of thinking is.

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Let's see.........could it be that no place there is sacred or safe and you can get gunned down anywhere, anytime by anybody without warning? That could be a factor.

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Do you think that's the truth?

Or do you think that is a dimension of reality that is consistently perpetuated by news and media?

Personally, I think politics and, most importantly, business thrives on the American feeling unsafe.

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It is indeed a 'dimension of reality that is consistently perpetuated by news and media' because it's true. But the statistics and Hospital records speak for themselves. I'd be scared to live in the US knowing that people have gone off half cocked and blown away people with a gun, and that it happens often and that even little innocent school children aren't safe.

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But the fear of gun owners creates more gun owners ... More and more guns. As a Canadian, I find the gun culture in America baffling. The school shootings are devastating. I don't know. But it is integral to the culture - it has been fostered that way. Owning a gun in ones house is the epitome of the American fear.

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It is. And just because our country solved it a certain way doesn't mean the US can. Even our solution is flawed and gun crime is increasing in certain areas, but over all we are safe because the PM banned people having house hold guns. Guns can only be owned with a permit. Yes, there are those who will circumvent that, but nothing like the US, because there are other factors in their culture that contribute to that fear and paranoia that don't exist to the same extent in our country.

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Guns are nothing without the cultured individuals that crave them. In the States, yes people are routinely killed by bullets. But consider the poor diet that kills at higher rates - heart disease is number one ... being killed by a gun doesn't crack the top ten. The answer is not to go out and by multiple weapons for ones home - there ought to be armour to defend against ones government.

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How else are you gonna have full control over "free" people, if not through fear. Scared people let you get away with anything as long as they think you'll protect them.

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To control

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I didn't realize that we did.

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Guns, Big shotism and The History of slaughtering the Native American People….don't you think those ghosts still roam the prairies?

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I do not know since the world is nothing but pink kittens and pretty rainbows.

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Well that sounds wonderful

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Do we?

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I think so

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After reading some of your other replies, here's my opinion. If you go by the media and their sensationalism, yes, we are a culture of fear. However, if one can realize that these shows are out on so they can sell ad space, the pressure drops dramatically.

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But... Consider the powerhouse that is the media (news, advertising, tv, everything) ... It engulfs us throughout our days, lodges messages in our brains and we process these messages subconsciously. If we are going by the media, we are going by a lot. Fear can be instilled with greater subtlety than simple sensationalism. I think the ads, the politics and the news journalism all work for the same ends - corporate interests.

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Agreed. And one we realize that, we can turn the television off and go outside. Who knows, we might even find a way to make the world a better place.

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That's a lovely idea ... Turning off the TV, watching media propaganda dissipate. As someone who watches very little TV, I don't think that rids the disease whatsoever. Advertisement symbolism and politics are unavoidable - and they've got quite a handle on the Internet. But sure, I'll take you up on making the world a better place.

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Why do you think that's true?

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I'm more interested in others' answers but...

It is a culture cultivated by mass media to essentially tame and control the masses - or keep them docile rather.

Media and politics accomplish this, and both of these are necessary tools for big business - for the corporate elite.

Surveillance, groomed ignorance, perpetual fear, religion, poor health... favourable conditions for a minute percent to maintain wealth and therefore control.

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I can't speak to the entire culture .. but ignorance breeds fear .. and sadly, that's a huge problem not only in the US, but in many other parts of the world too.

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By no means is the US the only example.

But it's an example that isn't quite as obvious as the others.

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