Sunday, September 30, 2012

Freedom From Conformity (and Expectations)

Probably nothing heralds a new age as well as the ending of an old -- as societies and civilizations ebb and flow -- as the journals of their time.

The 20th century heyday was the power of the press to create whatever images they wished the public to believe -- and in 20th century Hawaii, that was the image of the new island state as a paradise that marketed so well as the jet age took off and made the previously remote islands accessible to all those who could afford those fares.

But popularity always comes with a price -- and the price of popularity is that prices go up -- while that which is not popular, stays low or practically free because each individual decides for themselves whether they value it or not.  There is no mass market that exists -- to easily make money for those who control that right, monopoly and powerful marketing organizations.

And that is the paradise a few have discovered -- anywhere in the world they have the basic freedom to do so.  Old societies were largely about control,  hierarchy, and deciding where everyone had to go -- in order for anyone to get there.  But now, the fewer people going to one popular destination, makes it far easier and cheaper for any one individual to go there, and find it in its pristine, unmanufactured, unspoiled and uncrowded state.

That was the world that was beginning to be lost -- of the big and powerful, and replaced by the small and nimble -- that could stop, and turn on a dime.  That was the power of the individual -- living and acting as individuals, and no longer needing to mass to exercise their power

That is a huge turning point for the world -- as individuals no longer have to dance to "whoever brung the music."  Each could now bring their own, and dance (or not) to their own.  Thus the world of the mass experience, became the highly individualized one in which each could create their individual paradise according to their own taste -- and not that there were ideal conditions for everyone, including wanting to be where everybody else was.

Each largely could create their own individual paradises, as technology became these personal handmaidens for doing so -- but it was no longer about controlling another (or every other), to provide that for them.  Life was no longer about the dominance and control of every other, but the supreme mastery and ascendancy over oneself -- to create the greatest vision and possibility of life for oneself, and not require that everyone had to live that way also.

That is the state of mind that is the freedom to choose from the many options of which they are aware by those of any means.  That is ultimately what makes one "rich" -- in the choices they have (or feel they have) available to them. The poorest among them, has no choices, or is thoroughly convinced he has no choices, but the one desperate one they must make -- and can imagine no other but the one way the powers that be, and hope always to remain so, tells them it must be -- whether that is the rail, the superferry, or the information superhighway.

Everyone in their scheme, must pass through their turnstile, after first purchasing their tickets -- to the only game in town.


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