Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Hillary Derangment Syndrome and The Mini Me

Hola mi Gente,
I’ve been accused of suffering from “Hillary Derangement.” I assume that to mean that I suffer from an unreasonable and unhinged hatred of Hillary Clinton. I got this because I cited (with documentation) some key policy areas in which Trump is to the left of Hillary. What’s that? You shouldn’t be surprised. Hillary has a long history of corporate-friendly and right wing policy stances. If you doubt me, think of her long and recent history advocating for mass incarceration and her ties to the private prison industry. But don’t take my word for it, you can find out more here and here.

I will submit that Hillary derangement Syndrome exists. Hillary Derangement Syndrome is the unreasonable belief that voting for Hillary will result in different outcomes than the neoliberal/ neoconservative outcomes she has produced throughout her career. Hillary Derangement Syndrome is the belief that committing the same actions (i.e., voting conservative) will produce different results.

I’m reposting the following because it reminds me a lot of the Clintons and Trump.

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The Mini Me

and the Creation of the Personal Novela

Human beings are driven by a core wound, this kind of madness that something’s missing. The more conscious they get, the more desperate that becomes...
 -- Saniel Bonder

In Shakespeare's play, Othello, the protagonist and his young Venetian wife are deeply in love. Othello is a noble and simple-hearted soldier who trusts those around him. Desdemona, his devoted wife, loves him deeply and hangs on his every word. It is Iago, Othello's advisor and apparent friend, who plays one character against another, creating an atmosphere of separation and distrust. He whispers doubts into Othello's ear, inciting in him a violent jealousy that ultimately leads to a senseless tragedy.

We are all Othello's at heart -- open, trusting wanting to see the best in each other -- and we are seduced and driven to insane action by our own invisible Iagos. Our Iago is a state of mind; he cannot be seen, he lives in the shadows. Yet his work can be seen everywhere. Iago whispers to us both from within and through other people: it is the voice of a collective conditioning.

Our Iagos are like the “mini me” from the Austin Powers movies -- a smaller, angrier, and spiteful version of ourselves. A tragically funny alter-ego. Most of us live with a painful sense of separation from others, a sense of something missing, and a deep experience of limitation, fear, and desire -- we experience ourselves as small. As a result, we engage in a flurry of activity to avoid the objects of our fear and obtain the objects of our craving.

This is best exemplified in the current electoral cycle. This is the dance of fear-based living and, although widely perceived as normal, it fuels an endless drama of struggle. It's the main character in our personal novela -- like the over-the-top Spanish-language soap operas my mother watches. And no matter how hard we try, the poison seeps through the cracks in our armor, manifesting as disease, conflict, and failure.

On a personal level, it can manifest as a general anxiety, or a body image problem. On a community level, it can sabotage something as seemingly simple as a blog (if you want proof of the mini me, just take note of the widespread pettiness on social media). Globally, as manifested in the likes of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, it is expressed as war, as economic and environmental madness. This force has been given many names. I have heard it called “The Gremlin,” or (for the fundamentalists here) “Satan.” I call it ego-based living, or the “Mini Me.”

Unlike the movie, we cannot see or measure the mini me directly; we only know it by its effects. It is like a thief in the night: you actually do not see him, but you know he has been there because your valuables have been taken. This mini me is state of mind -- a social conditioning of sorts and it possesses certain qualities:

Sense of Lack This is the essence of the mini me. Enough is never enough; we are never spiritual enough, skinny enough, smart enough, or hip enough. We perceive everything through this sense of lack. We can’t do the big things and must settle for less.

Sense of Separation Constantly reaching "out there" to fill up our sensed emptiness keeps us focused on a “me-oriented” reality, reinforcing our separateness.

Addiction Gripped in the throes of craving and lack, as soon as we sense that something external will “do it” for us, we latch on to it and become addicted. In this way, the mini me can lead us into unhealthy attachments to wring-headed and pernicious social policies, work, sex, food, drugs, the internet, or even romantic relationships.

Fear Once desire and addition take over, we are overcome by a sense of non-specific fear. If we believe the right politician will alleviate our sense of emptiness, immediately loneliness becomes a terrifying fate.

Suspicion fear makes us suspicious, we trust no one completely.

Strategic Living We always plan for the worst -- something bad can happen any moment (politicians are notorious for using this aspect of the mini me).

Anxiety There is the notion that something is wrong, that we should be doing something more to be “complete.”

Hostile Competition this is especially true in the realm of politics (and dating). If there is this notion that there is not enough, we must fight others who are trying to get it too! This is hostile competition as opposed to co-creation.

From a political standpoint, how do we get back to a vision of a society where ego-driven madness doesn’t rule? How do we (or do we want to?) get back to our collective original self -- connected to something more powerful than mere desire, aversion, and grasping? I do know this much: we don’t get it back by participating and electing the same candidates and expecting different results.

My name is Eddie and I’m in recovery from civilization… 

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