Kaleidoscope of Postmodern Life, Part Seventeen: Fetal Malnutrition and Politics: Prenatal Roots of Greed, Sycophancy, Class War, and Revolution
Hunger Games: Prenatal Oxygen Hunger and Its Political Imprints – Greed, Oppression, Sycophancy, Class War, Revolution: 21st Century and Its Discontents, Part 17
Prenatal Roots of War
In a previous section I mentioned how our human tendency to warring has its roots in the uncomfortable crowdedness we experience in the late stages of gestation—a pain and trauma that stays with us for life and drives us to act it out in trying to push back lines and make more room (womb) for ourselves in many areas of our lives, including politically. I said our psychological state preceding wars, in line with deMause’s work in this area, is akin to feeling stifled and wanting to “breathe free.”
Hunger Games – War and Aggression
So of course our aggressions against others are connected to the long period of difficult immovability in the womb, but we can already see it is related to the reduction of oxygen at that time as well.
Looking into the feelings of latent oxygen panic rooted in fetal oxygen hunger, we see it has many more political implications, even, than war and aggressions toward others over space…over lines and perimeters and rooted in the feelings of being hemmed in—that constellation of “crowded” feelings I’ve previously teased out.
In the “gasping” or oxygen deprivation trauma of late stage gestation, we can’t get enough oxygen, we feel suffocated…suppressed, stifled, repressed, oppressed. It is out of these feelings carried over and restimulated again and again as adults that we create class wars, revolution, and culture wars. For we feel there to be an oppressive force inhibiting our self-expression, keeping us from “breathing freely.”
Hunger Games—Greed and Oppression
But more: On the other side of those panicky feelings of suffocation we are driven to gobbling up more resources than we need—greed. We experienced oxygen poverty in the womb, so poverty and reductions in finances feel stifling and suffocating. It is less desirable to not have money, of course. My point is that this prospect drives us to overreact and build our lives around major act outs of it, as so:
Suppression, Oppression, “Sucking” From
(1) Being politically oppressed, we feel we can’t move freely (the crowded feeling), but, interestingly, we feel we can’t “breathe freely.” We act this out on both sides of class war and revolution: One side always feels this lack because it has roots in the unconscious and cannot be satisfied and so over overcompensates and in doing so “sucks” up all possible resources (oxygen) from those lower on the totem pole…it “suppresses” the “masses”…it “sucks from” the masses.
Liberals hearts may “bleed” but not conservatives. For releasing blood is losing oxygen and conservatives have a prenatal “knowing” that you need every smidgen you can get to survive. You may even go so far as to try to “squeeze blood from a stone” (the aging placenta).
Sycophancy, Conformity, “Sucking Up”
(2) From another side of this discomfort we have a prenatal sycophancy showing itself. Conforming underlings, in a country’s economic array, act out their prenatal oxygen panic by investing all their energy in “sucking up” to those above them … seeking to insure a steady supply of resources (money, oxygen) by sucking from the rich stream (blood stream) of money “circulating” among those on rungs above them on the economic ladder.
Suffocation, Starvation, Being “Sucked” From
(3) And the other component in this political triangle—those poor and working class directly opposed to the greedy forces “sucking up” from the masses—feels this suppression as suffocation, starvation, and stifling unto death. So it wants to “overthrow” or “throw off” the forces weighing down upon and suppressing/suffocating them.
Basically, if you’re not “sucking” resources (oxygen) from below, you are either “sucking up” to those above you or being “sucked from” and wanting to “overthrow” them to “breathe more freely.”
Hunger Games—Freedom and Revolutionaries
Injustice, Inequity, Struggle – Throwing Off
This does not mean that revolutionary forces are act outs of early trauma and not real. It does not mean that oppression does not actually exist; it does not mean that struggles for economic justice are overcompensations. No. It is no more true that these are unreal than that struggles to save the environment are act outs. For we must remember that the prenatal forces drive us to actually manifest conditions that re-create our womb states. And just as we are driven to despoil our air and waters as act outs of our fetal malnutrition, so also our fetal oxygen panic causes us to create situations of dire inequity by pushing unnecessary greedy acts creating gross economic injustice. And these greedy forces are aided in their suppression by their sycophantic underlings, driven by their underlying panic of resource loss. Between the two, they are able to create human societies of economic inequality, suppression, and oppression which mirror the conditions of resource lack in the womb for the majority of folks throughout history and virtually everyone on the planet in these strange days.
Free Speech – Stifled, Inspire, Expire, Express…To Breathe Free
Interesting aspects of this oppression-revolution dynamic rooted in the fetal dynamic is the focus on free speech: The one side wants to suppress expression (expiration—release of air) of inspiration (to inspire—to take in air), thus directly slowing down the masses’ political equivalent of breathing, “stifling” its expression (its ability to “breathe out”). The revolutionary side of this wants the opposite: Folks want freedom of speech. They want to be able to speak freely (breathe freely), to be inspired (take in air or spirit), and to express this uninhibitedly (expire, let air out). These same dynamics apply to freedom of religion as well.
The oppressed masses feel they are deprived, can’t get enough of what they need (oxygen), want to “breathe freely,” and so need to assert self-expression, to expire (express) one’s inspiration freely as part of that “struggle.”
Hunger Games—Sycophancy and Conservatism
Reactionary and Conservative Thinking = Prenatal Conformity – Don’t Move Too Much, Don’t Stand Out, Maybe You’ll Get More (Oxygen)
But the basic dynamic is about resources: One side out of oxygen panic wants to suck up resources from everywhere around and wants to keep those resources from others. And the other side wants to take theirs back. And that third part is the conforming fetus hoping to get more resources from “above”…to “suck up”…by not moving too much, by staying compliant with outside forces, by not being too obvious or “standing out,” and if moving to do so only in ways remembered as safe…strictly prescribed, ritualistic ways.
For our prenatal memory tells us that doing so is the way of getting a little more in the way of resources (oxygen). We experienced that by not struggling, by not moving around too much…and further complicating and constricting the blood flow through the arteries to the placenta (the bank)…more oxygen (money) seemed to flow. Also, by not moving too much, by “conserving” our energy, “holding our breath” as it were, we might be able to survive…that being too “radical” and free risked death.
Hunger Games—Culture War
Oppressors Orchestrate a Panicked Population for Their Profits
One final aspect to this prenatal dynamic acted out politically is the culture war that comes of it: The greedy forces manipulate the latent panic of the masses in order to suck more resources by telling each segment of the masses that another sector of the population is actually the part that is sucking all their resources, stealing all their benefits and money (oxygen). So we have the creation of minorities and scapegoats out of this interplay. But the reason it happens unerringly in societies is because it works so well. And it works so well because the forces of manipulation are orchestrating powerful drives and forces within the masses—tendencies of people born of desperation and panic, which have roots in the earliest months of one’s individual existence.
Next: Hunger Games—Human Rights and Racism
More Mass Manipulation Around Bigotry and Anti-Semitism … Vampires and Blood Libel, Too
In the next section we look more deeply into this manipulation of the masses, this scapegoating of minorities. We see how racism, bigotry, and anti-Semitism are themselves constructed out of prenatal pushes and pulls. We find out why we look at others the way we do, so that our errant ideas can be further used against us by the greedy ones. And we stumble upon the underpinnings of some of the most curious of human concoctions of thought—as in the ideas of vampires and blood libel.
Continue with Hunger Games – Vampires and Culture Wars … Fetal Roots of Racism, Bigotry, Anti-Semitism … Blood Libel: 21st Century and Its Discontents, Part 18
Return to How We Look to the Gods and Prometheus Redux … Building More Nukes and Drilling More Holes – Icarus Keeps Flapping and the Gods Can’t Stop Laughing: 21st Century and Its Discontents, Part 16
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Libya, Nuclear power, Collective bargaining rights…Wisconsin, Off-shore oil drilling…Gulf oil spills, Tax cuts for the rich, the public option in health care…
UN oks a no-fly zone for Libya. But, why did they wait this long? Qaddafi is attacking Benghazi, the last holdout. Isn’t this like sending in the cavalry when only the Alamo is left? Does Obama have to concede EVERYTHING ahead of time!?
And then have a last final futile battle when all is lost, often accomplishing little or nothing. Look at the lack of fight on health care, in particular the public option part of it. Look at the lack of fight on (and then total capitulation to) tax cuts for the rich (requiring that we will be fighting a running, losing battle against overwhelmingly funded adversaries indefinitely)! Look at the lack of action on Wisconsin, leaving only the lame recourse of people having to try to pull off a recall of elected officials. Look at the lack of action on the Gulf Oil Spill; the health and environmental repercussions of which are out of mind now, but are there forever, and will be back to haunt us soon enough, just like the danger of nuclear reactors never really went away.
Obama’s preemptive concessions to Qaddafi; to BP, to offshore oil drilling; to Republicans about the public option, tax cuts for the rich, & collective bargaining rights; to the nuclear industry in the US, and so on are weakness, dilly-dallying, mealy-mouthedness, and lack of cahonies by our President that we will be dealing with and suffering because of for a long time.
A little more spine by Obama in crucial areas such as these would have saved what will be required instead: the loss of innumerable thousands of lives to Mideast tyrants and environmental hazards and pollutions and the years, decades of hard work, sweat, tears, and sacrifice by the even greater multitude of activists and workers needed to just TRY to regain, or gain, what has been conceded.
Cost in Lives, Sweat of Obama’s Weakness