9 thoughts on “Member Skype #19 Warmup – 1984 by George Orwell

  • just a random thought.
    When I used to think the web was infested by paid shills I couldn’t help thinking that most of the so called alternative websites could just be the modern incarnation of the junk-shop in 1984.
    Maybe there was a bit of overdramatization by Orwell, as TPTB are smart enough to have since long ago realized there’s no real need to break into houses arresting people, as dumbing them down works just fine and better. But the idea that even the “counterculture” can be actually manufactured and provided by the controllers still seems to me, especially for his time, one of the most brilliant and powerfully symbolic message to be found in the book.

    • This is an interesting parallel. There are so many silly-looking conspiracy websites out there, it does lead one to wonder if real people are behind these sites.

      WordPress hosting is so inexpensive these days, and even a complete amateur can produce a professional-looking website.

      So why do we see so many basic html conspiracy websites? Why do they often look like what one would expect a stereotypical crazy person to produce?

      Is it possible that the litany of junk websites are analogous to the junk in the junk shop?

      Food for thought.

    • No need to apologise, these threads remain open for a reason ūüôā

  • watermanchris

    I’m bummed I missed the call but it’s a tough time on Saturday for me as it doesn’t get dark until almost 9 pm and the afternoon/evenings are the nicest part of the day in South Florida. We’ve been taking advantage of that time to work on the exterior of the new crib.

    One thing I have been contemplating lately with regards to 1984 and BNW is that both books give a clear alternative to living “within the system” – 1984 in “the proles” and BNW in “the savages”. Is there a chance that the whole unveiling is a way to separate “us” from the normies? I feel a little more removed every day from the normies, this despite the fact that there are likely more people every day coming closer to “our” position on certain topics. Like I told Ab at Fakeologist, nobody goes backwards. Once have eyes to see, you can never unsee.

    • If it is a choice between a beautiful sunset and fresh air, or sitting in front of a computer screen inside the house, then I won’t take it personally if you skip the calls.

      It’ll be winter soon enough…

      Nice connection between the Savages and the Proles. TPWRTS leave both to their own devices. We see that the Proles seem happy enough drinking beer and remembering nothing, while the Savages seem happy enough living primitive lives.

      My own concerns about the world, what some might term ‘anxieties’, have been greatly diminished by — among other things — noticing, accepting and appreciating the fact that the normies around me seem no less happy than myself.

      As Huxley the Controller asks John in Brave New World, who am I to say what is happiness? The extremes of despair of optimism inherent to what I call ‘deprogramming’ may not, after all, be preferable to the docile emptiness of normie life.

      Give them their trivial work, their morning coffee, their evening alcohol, and plenty of instant gratification via smartphones and Netflix, and watch the normies live out their days exactly as expected.

      Like you, I feel more and more distant from the normies with each passing year. I would like to feel closer to them, or at least to some of them. It would be nice to be able to imagine that we share a common, and good, essential nature or spirit.

      Then again, I wasted a lot of time and energy trying to communicate with simple creatures in the past. That was not their fault, it was mine. I can always go back and repeat the same mistakes again in the future if that is what I choose to do. At least now I will be making those mistakes (?) with more agency, in the sense that I will know (to some extent) what I am doing.

      You can’t get blood from a stone.

      • watermanchris

        Yes, the solstice is right around the corner and then the sun (son) begins his descent. It rained for close to two weeks straight so I was sure I would be able to join but at about 5 PM est, the clouds parted. 1984 is also a favorite of mine and it was even when I was a normie. Based on the part of the call I’ve heard thus far (only the first few minutes), it seems like we’ll probably have some follow-ups.

        I downloaded The Prestige in the hopes that I might catch the call but I likely won’t have time to watch it. It’s amazing to me how quickly the weeks fly by and even though I haven’t made the last few calls, I still find myself looking forward to Saturday evenings.

        I too have begun to relax about the people around me being blind to the things that are “so obvious” to me. My wife is much better at it than me as she can maintain her composure in conversation. I typically have to change the subject or extricate myself from the situation lest I blurt out something that is just going to upset my interlocutor.

        As the “ancient Chinese” proverb says – “May you live in interesting times”
        – Some Chinese Dude circa 1861

  • I don’t know if anyone mentioned it before, but I think its a little funny/perfect that Orwell used the word “telescreen” instead of “television”. To me at least, “tele” is short for telephone, not television. And the whole word “telescreen” sounds a bit like touchscreen.

    • I hadn’t thought of this. Good point.

      One of my favourite chapters in The Sync Book is Kevin Halcott’s ‘Screen: Thin Film or Membrane’.

      The ‘silver screen’. Stars on the silver screen. Silver star. Argentium Astrum. Aleister Crowley.

      In Donnie Darko, we see the wormhole open through the screen. In Back to the Future, we see the Delorean travel through the photo booth / cinema / drive-in screen. In The Matrix, we see Neo and his friends travel through the payphones.

      What is a ‘screen’? Something which keeps things out. What is a ‘film’? Something which separates, a layer.


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