In statesmanship get the formalities right, never mind about the moralities. — Mark Twain
Ethan Indigo Smith
The divide between formality and truth is everywhere a canyon, and understanding the difference between the two can lead to a more complete understanding of politics, or statesmanship everywhere.
Formality often dictates to politics because people allow formality to trump truth.
Let me point out a couple of the greatest formalities and contrasting truths of our time and perhaps some of the greatest contrasts of any time before.
Nuclear energy is safe. Nuclear energy is experimentally toxic.
GMO food is nutritious. Monsanto prevented long-term studies.
Global warming and pollution are not related. Environment is being destroyed and toxins rising.
Marijuana prohibition is for society’s safety. Creating contraband creates criminality.
Once you know the difference between formality and truth, you can begin to understand politics and life, because politics, like it or not, is everywhere, in everything. Those who are averse to politics are averse to considering life, because politics shapes everything everywhere. People are basically infected by politics. Politics, perhaps because of those averse to it, often shapes individuals more than individuals shape politics. Being able to understand politics is being able to understand life and progression or regression of that thing we call culture, society.
The understanding of the difference between formality and truth might itself be a measure of mental adulthood. The more one obfuscates truth and revels in formality, the more infantile one’s state of mind potentially is. Those who accept formality more than truth normally have some selfish reason to shed the truth. This can be seen in the operation of most any institution where people forgo the real, for the presented deal.
An extreme example of this is the divine right of kings of Europe and Japan, but any leniency to institutions in such a way is giving in to formality and shedding truth. The Citizen’s United Supreme Court decision (those unaware of this have been shamefully averse to politics) is another example where for all intents and purposes truth is shed for formality.
You can say corporations are people all you want, you can allow formalized, institutionalized phantoms to network with wealth, but it’s not right. The fact is institutions are not individuals. You can present logic for bestowing wealthy people freedom to speak with their money, but the truth of morality dictates otherwise. The truth is that powerful corporate entities always had their power checked in the U.S.A., but since the days of Smedley Butler (read War is a Racket) corporations have changed the setting and adjusted formality to their favor.
With historical understanding of how important presentation is, and how it so frequently manipulates the truth, one can begin to see the differences between formality and truth. Formality is pointing out that the temperature of the planet has risen before; the truth is there are toxins in the water that cause cancer — some there accidentally, others purposefully. The truth is Japan is a dying nation because of nuclear hubris of Pandoric proportions. The truth is that most food is lacking nutrition and the formality is that it’s genetically modified to taste good. The truth is marijuana and hemp are not dangerous, but creating contraband is very dangerous.
There is rarely truth in formality, and truth never ever requires formality. The truth is that history is a story of individuals and institutions and their interplay. History itself is history of the political state, but it is also a history of the mind state. The truth is that institutions are dependent on individuals, not the other way around. If institutions were left to their own devices there would be no societal progression at all. When institutions control, they promote oligarchical mechanisms and seem to leave all in desert ruin.
Formality, whether in feudal Japan or the oligarchical tendencies of globalization currently permeating every situation on the planet does not seek to progress. But the truth often requires change and progression. The truth of environmental disaster to the point of regional desertification requires change. The formality of the world today obfuscates the ultimate truth of the natural world; all life requires clean water. Formality obfuscates the truth and the truth renders formality to literal or figurative rubble.
Formality feeds oligarchical greed. Truth sustains mutually beneficial need. Formality results in distorted logic and acceptance of outright lies. And formality is always steered by the oligarchical interests of the likes of those who set up a system of formal homage to kings and corporations like The Citizen’s United (read institutions incorporated) decision which put Adelson in charge of the republican primaries, successfully, if anything was successful about it, blocking off Ron Paul.
Formality is institutional rhetoric. The truth is undeniable reality. Most individuals in most places would rather defer to formality instead of investigating the truth, and frequently those who agree with this concept are those who most ardently refuse to investigate the truth. Most individuals would rather follow tradition instead of learn new information. People would rather live unconscious of their political incompetence rather than learn about the chasm between formality and truth.
The psychological concept of the Matrix of Conscious Competence is a model of learning that corresponds with Jungian concepts and The Philosophy of the Duality of Polarity. The first stage of learning, according to this model, is unconscious incompetence; this is inability to the point one is ignorant of not only the subject but one’s own incompetence. The next step is conscious incompetence; this is the realization of one’s inability. Thirdly is conscious competence; one becomes able. The fourth aspect of the Matrix of Conscious Competence is unconscious competence; this is the mastery stage where proficiency is effortless.
Whenever formality is put before truth there is some form of incompetence taking place, usually in the form of unconscious incompetence; compete obliviousness to the situation. The truth is we need to stop the global burning of the petrolithic fuels and grow fuel. The truth is we need to cease nuclear experimentation or it will cease all. The truth is nature was perfectly perfect in every way and genetic modification of food with bacteria and viruses is evil. The truth is we need to ban prohibition and legalize marijuana and hemp for fuel, food, medicine and material – for anything.
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