Is this ‘nanny state’, this forcible social conformity driving you to despair?

Having finally managed to drag myself off of Facebook and YouTube this week, following various distractions as to what my friends and family have been up to during these last few days and videos of Jack Black, Tenacious D, Beethoven, Clara Rockmore playing the theremin and Jackboot’s “Remember, Walking in the Sand”, I was struck by the nagging question that has followed me around for as long as I can remember……What is it all about? Life, I mean.

We endlessly use phrases like “live every moment” or “time waits for no man” these are reminders that our time here is short and we should get the most out of our lives, but all too often I find myself drifting through life with no clue as to what my or ‘our’ real purpose is and now, at least, a generous halfway through my life, I’m literally still none the wiser.

It is not that I am discontented in any way, it is moreover that I am still trying to discern if there is something I should be ‘concentrating on’ or ‘achieving’.

I have a husband that I absolutely adore, I have wonderful step-children who I love as my own, I have a small but close family and longstanding friends all of whom I genuinely wish to keep in regular contact with. I feel loved and safe and secure and thankfully have few worries in life yet somehow I can not accept that this IS life. I am intelligent and articulate and above all, I am questioning my existence, not just mine but of all mankind and I know that there must be many of us that do not merely accept things for the way they are simply because we are told to.

I fail to comprehend or believe that we are here merely to have families, to work and pay taxes for two-thirds of our life after which we will be entitled to a well-deserved ‘rest’.

I find myself wishing, and not for the first time, that there was a genuine option to ‘opt out’ of society as we know it.

We are the supposed masters of our planet yet we seemingly have less freedom than any other life form that exists here. I say this with absolute certainty and conviction, as I sit at the front of my peaceful house watching the birds come and go, nesting in the eaves of my barn, or the insects busily buzzing around the wisteria on the front of my house. Are they paying me to rent their accommodation? Do they have to pay income tax, business rates or property tax? Are they required to obtain a passport or a driving license? Are they subject to vehicle tax or insurance? The answer, of course, is No.

When you look at our own democratic society of supposed freedom we are (like any other democratic state) promised liberty, equality, and justice.

Yet still, we are not truly free. We are never truly equal and there is not always justice.

This is because we can only base our democratic choices on the information we are given; most of which turns out to be various versions of the truth, some blatant lies, vacuous and unsupported statements and plenty of mud-slinging to boot.

Take the fiasco that was the EU referendum. Whether you support Brexit or not (and I have friends in both camps), there can no longer be any doubt that the information being plied to the public just ahead of the referendum was a complete pack of lies that resulted in the most monumental decision for the country for decades, yet despite that the entire public was sold a set of untruths and misrepresentations, it would seem once again that MP’s are above the law, and seemingly nobody was culpable or prepared to take any responsibility for those disgraceful fantasies that were put forth and very quickly proven to be untenable after the so-called ‘victory’. In any other area of life, if you were so grossly mis-sold a ‘product’ there would absolutely be a process for recourse. Not, it seems when it comes to ‘politics’ and I am still utterly disgusted and dismayed at this incredible injustice. Regardless of how people personally feel about the result, good or bad, it was the way in which it was achieved that still astounds me and it is utterly imperative that this approach cannot be allowed to go unchecked in the future. It is wholly irresponsible and a complete dereliction of duty. How are people supposed to vote intelligently, sensibly and rationally for the good of the country as a whole when the very people that are there to represent us behave so dishonorably. MP’s, news agencies and anyone else involved in serious falsehoods need to be taken to task via the judicial system not only as punishment for their disgusting misuse of power but also as a future deterrent.

Sorry, rant over, back to the point in hand…..

Our schools are the initial breeding ground for the start of a very long slog of social conformity. They supposedly provide an ‘education’ in what is deemed important and necessary in life but in reality they are purely a conveyor belt churning out pupils with the same indoctrination, not quite destroying creative thinking and imagination in the process but doing their best to limit and subdue the bright, young ‘individuals’ that enter their establishments. They can’t even choose their own footwear without it being subject to countless petty objections! So, yes, after eleven years of the schooling system, a sizeable amount of any ‘individuality’ has almost certainly been suppressed or rehabilitated out of our young offspring.

Now, suitably repressed, they will face the prospect of getting a job for the next forty years of their lives so that they can become dutiful homeowners and pay their taxes whilst massively financially contributing to ‘society’.

Perhaps this is my ‘mid-life crisis’. I have awakened to the possibility that this is not necessarily the best use of our life but also with age and wisdom I am pitifully aware that we don’t really have genuine choices in life. Not really. We are simply labouring under the illusion of having choices, harbouring a misguided notion of such a situation. We don’t have the freedom to own a bit of land and truly do our own thing, whether that be absolutely nothing or painting ourselves blue from head to toe and dancing around a bonfire wailing like a banshee. There is always somebody, somewhere who will want to know what we are doing, are we earning anything from this venture, should we be paying taxes, do we owe them any rates? There is simply no option to say “Piss off and mind your own business, and leave me to mind mine”

We don’t truly have the freedom to roam this planet of ours. Hills, countryside, mountains, lakes, beaches, oceans. Every piece of land and sea is owned by someone else.

I currently live in the Limousin, it is one of the least populated parts of France and I am surrounded by countryside, yet I cannot set foot on any of it without effectively trespassing. I am quite sure my nice, neighborly farmer with whom I am on first name terms with, wouldn’t mind me taking a walk or having a jog on his land but that is not the point. The point is there is not a part of this planet that is not already owned.

At what point did it originally become someone’s ‘property’?

At what point, did working all day every become the main focus of our lives?

Can you think of anyone other than someone who stood to benefit greatly from the work of the masses that would have imposed this system on everyone else?

All this working for a living to pay our bills, whether it be a mortgage, or taxes, or University fees. They have all been imposed by somebody else, long in the past and because of this, we simply accept that is the way of life. That is simply how it is. We’ve stopped questioning it, many don’t even think about it. It just IS!

Ask yourself this, what if we don’t all wish to conform? What if we want to do something else? What if a WHOLE LOT of us all wanted to do something else?

Why is it so hard for other people to understand that just because we are not all the same, does not make us something to be feared or suspicious of. We are merely different, some might say ‘more enlightened’ others may argue that we are simply ‘off our rockers’.

Obviously, the ‘powers that be’ don’t want us all sodding off and doing our own thing and as such we do not really have a choice to do so. Let’s face it, if everyone ‘woke up’ and decided to think “Bollocks to this, I can’t be bothered with any of this contributing to society lark. I’m off” we wouldn’t have doctors or nurses or teachers or policeman, or an army, or people that ‘served’ us in restaurants, or refuse collection. We would all have to fend for ourselves, and in many ways, that is a scary thought when you consider the possible lawlessness that it would bring about. A cosseted existence is far more palatable but what of the ignorance that it proliferates? Are we ignoring our own reasons for existence?

They certainly prefer us all, in our little rabbit hutches, working, earning, spending, serving them like slaves, they want our senses dulled down so we don’t question our lives. They want to keep us subdued, selling us an endless stream of shit we don’t want or need, controlling the media to feed us only the news they want us to see, watching the same moronic TV shows and seeing the same puerile drivel on social media so we can continually be bombarded with nonsense and propaganda to keep us servile.

They want to keep us fully occupied and constantly distracted so that we won’t realise that there is perhaps another way.

I mean, come on, WE are the human race. Are we really only here to do a job that may or may not provide any pleasure in our entire working life, so we can live in an expensive house that we will only ‘own’ many decades later, with our four or five weeks holiday a year to possibly go see another bit of the planet and then get to the end of our lives and wonder what the bloody hell it was all about?

Is anybody else out there asking the obvious question?

There have been 3.8 billion years of life on Earth, our own human race has existed for 200,000 years and yet we stand there in our precious lunch hour, wasting our time wondering which of the 412 different shampoos we should buy, even though essentially they all do an identical job.

We have an average lifespan of seventy-nine years (though some are sadly with us for much less and others perhaps much longer) but the human average is seventy-nine short years, that’s twenty-eight thousand, eight hundred and thirty-five days.

Shouldn’t we spend that time doing something magnificent or at least what we believe to be worthwhile?

I remember once saying to my husband shortly after we met “life is not a dress rehearsal, we only get one shot at life, it’s important we get it right “

On the basis of this comment and, of course, my many other veritable merits and attributes he decided that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.

I just can’t help wondering what ‘the rest of that life’ should be and now that I’ve started thinking about it, I can’t stop and I can’t quite feel the same about the world around me…….

“And I can’t get it out of my head
No, I can’t get it out of my head
Now my old world is gone for dead
‘Cause I can’t get it out of my head” *

The Virtual Recluse

*Lyrics excerpt from the wonderful ‘Can’t get it out of my head’ by Electric Light Orchestra, 1974, written by Jeff Lynne.

If this post serves to do nothing other than reintroducing or introducing you to this wonderful piece of music, I will be happy indeed