12 May 2009
Posted by victor as Ideology in SRussia (Soviet Russia) and Bushmerica, Sociological essays
4th Letter to the Readers (Ideology as a weapon of power elite in SRussia [Soviet Russia] and Bushmerica)
One of the topics elaborated in my new book “Ideological Superstitions and Political Misperceptions in 20th-21st Centuries” is the question of the similarity between the psychological postures of power elites in both countries toward their own ideologies.
The Soviet and Bushmerican power elites tend to perceive ideology not as an evolving, changing, developing, alive in time, part of a general process of historical innovation, but instead as an (absolutized) fetish – a piece of petrified thinking expecting to be worshiped. To be really able to effectively use ideology for enhancing its power a decision-making elite must be able to cynically treat it as an instrument, not as a fetish. The amazing feature of power elite’s behavior in Soviet Russia and in Bushmerica is exactly its inability to do so. Again and again the decision-makers retreat from “rational” manipulation of the masses through ideological slogans and war outcries and instead take the position of worshipful fetishists of their own ideological dogmas.
The members of SRussian and Bushmerican power elites are not psychologically able to resist the passive posture of ideology-worshippers because they have an irrational need to feel protected by their ideological idol instead of just seducing the masses into relying on ideology while being free from idolatry themselves. The decision-makers in both countries are like the masses – they are made from the same dough. They have a need for ideology as a psychological protection not less than the masses do. They are themselves object of their own propaganda. Instead of just fooling the masses they happen to simultaneously fool themselves. Even as villains these people are not able to be successful (they only seem successful during short periods of time).
The power elites in USSR and Bushmerica equally cannot think effectively. They are paralyzed by their own propaganda. All they can do is to despotically rule in the name of their (ideological) fetish. As thinkers they are frozen and inert – they are insecure in front of the world with its tensions and problems. Only by being close to their fetish can they feel more vital and confident, and only then able to act – but only in the name of protecting and immortalizing the fetish. What they understand as their task is to protect their fetish from outside attack or criticism from inside their own country. What they’re hoping with their whole heart and believe with whole of their souls is that in response their ideological fetish will protect them with its super-human extra-wisdom and extra-power.
That’s what the communist ideology was for the Soviet leaders and the masses. That’s what “democracy-freedom” as a formula of superiority over the world is for Bushmericans. What global profit is for global profiteers, stock market is for the worshippers of the Golden Calf, banks’ irresponsible investment/lending for the bank-fat cats, and “the free market’s invisible hand” for the anti-free-market monopolists of suppressing competition and manipulation of market. Communism, global profit, stock market’s financial absurdities with its feverish/frenzied calculations, bad lending by banks, and the “invisible hand of the free market” icon/banner – are equally superstitions. But if the worshippers of these ideological fetishes could figure it out, they would be feeling themselves naked, cold, helpless, abandoned, as if, unattended by mother-like care, with goose bumps and shrunken scrotums, and then they would lose hope that during their life time they will be able to live right amidst Fata-Morgana of their dream about absolute – paradisiacal, invulnerability. For the irrational believers in ideologies it’s better to die than to loose their stony stability of their imaginary universe.
They cannot let go of the fetishes of their ideological superstitions. Without them they will fall down into the abyss of a psychotic breakdown. That’s what superstitions are – temporary saviors from a breakdown deployed to postpone psychological collapse. To believe in superstition as truth is like to destroy the natural environment for the sake of immediate survival, and eventually die together with nature.