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Elite Envy as a Civilizational Toxin

Elite Envy as a Civilizational Toxin


It will be recalled that, in my previous two posts, I wrote about nihilism having to do with a belief in ‘nothing,’ and a concomitant, wanton destruction of (everything valuable in) society, and about two kinds of nihilism (passive and active), one of which shows the way out of the barren landscape of contemporary nihilism. It will be recalled that I intended to address the worst kind of nihilism that has ever made its appearance in the world, which I thought I would call ‘cynical nihilism.’

However, having thought about it I realised that, for various reasons, it would be misleading to call it ‘cynical nihilism,’ even if some understandings of the everyday meaning of the term ‘cynical’ seem to justify my initial intention. 

A quick internet search gives the everyday meaning of ‘cynical’ as ‘an attitude of scornful or jaded negativity,’ which does appear to apply to the particular kind of nihilism perceptible in the actions of the group of neo-fascists I have in mind, but when the rest of the sentence is added, it no longer seems to be the case, namely: ‘…especially a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of others.’ Add to this that the Concise Oxford English Dictionary unpacks ‘cynical’ as being ‘like a cynic, incredulous of human goodness; sneering…,’ then its inappropriateness for my purposes becomes apparent. 

Historically, a ‘cynic’ was a member of an ancient Greek group of philosophers who showed ‘contempt for ease and pleasure,’ lived ‘in accord with nature,’ and scorned conventions. And what do ‘conventions’ suggest here, apart from its link with the emergence of (radical, passive, and active) nihilism, as explained in my previous post? That the ancient cynics already looked with suspicion at agreements among people, especially powerful lawmakers, in whose interest such conventions were established.

It appears, then, that the term, cynicism, could more appropriately be used to characterise a justifiable attitude, not generally towards all people, but particularly towards those in public office who have consistently deceived the rest of us with ulterior motives since at least 2020. 

In other words, it is understandable to be cynical towards the likes of Dr Fauci, and towards the ‘director’ of the WHO, the current ‘president’ of the US, the ’prime minister’ of Britain, the ‘chancellor’ of Germany, and so on, let alone those who masquerade as philanthropists, such as Bill Gates and George Soros, while acting in a manner diametrically opposed to philanthropism, namely what African thinker, Achille Mbembe, would call ‘necropolitical(ly)’ (necropolitics: a kind of politics that promotes death).

Hence it seems wise not to employ ‘cynical nihilism’ to describe the attitude towards society perceptible in the actions and pronouncements of members of ‘the Davos group;’ that is, the technocratic neo-fascists who aggrandise themselves misleadingly with the collective noun, the ‘elites.’ I shall rather call them, following Mbembe, ‘necro-fascists.’ 

To explain what I have in mind, a little detour is necessary via the work of Michel Foucault, who paved the way for Mbembe’s thought. In Foucault’s so-called genealogical studies, the image that arose of the modern world was decidedly austere. In Discipline and Punish (1995), for example, on the history of changing modes of punishment, Foucault disclosed a prison-like world (ours) in which individuals are reduced to ‘docile bodies’ through various disciplinary techniques such as ‘hierarchical observation,’ ‘normalising judgement,’ and the ‘examination’ (see Olivier 2010 for an elaboration on this). In Volume I of The History of Sexuality (1980) he augmented this bleak social landscape by depicting the inescapable grip that ‘bio-power’ has on individuals and populations, via strategies like the ‘anatomo-politics of the body’ (for instance the social control of reproduction) and the ‘bio-politics of populations’ (such as population control). 

Mbembe (Necropolitics, Public Culture 15, 1, pp. 11-40, 2003) has taken Foucault’s work further by arguing that, given certain socio-political phenomena in the contemporary world that indicate scant regard for people’s lives, one can justifiably refer to ‘necropolitics’ instead of bio-politics. It is worth quoting Mbembe here (Necropolitics, p. 12.):

To exercise sovereignty is to exercise control over mortality and to deny life as the deployment and manifestation of power. One could summarize in the above terms what Michel Foucault meant by biopower: that domain of life over which power has taken control. But under what practical conditions is the right to kill, to allow to live, or to expose to death exercised? Who is the subject of this right? What does the implementation of such a right tell us about the person who is thus put to death and about the relation of enmity that sets that person against his or her murderer? Is the notion of biopower sufficient to account for the contemporary ways in which the political, under the guise of war, of resistance, or of the fight against terror, makes the murder of the enemy its primary and absolute objective? War, after all, is as much a means of achieving sovereignty as a way of exercising the right to kill. Imagining politics as a form of war, we must ask: What place is given to life, death, and the human body (in particular the wounded or slain body)? How are they inscribed in the order of power? 

Hence Mbembe’s neologism of ‘necropolitics.’ I would contend that the actions of the globalist cabal, as well as the pronouncements of members of these parasitic ‘elites,’ such as those of Klaus Schwab (erstwhile CEO of the World Economic Forum, a fanatical political organisation masquerading as one promoting economic interests), on the ‘frightening’ prospect of a ‘comprehensive cyber-attack’ resonate with Mbembe’s notion of ‘necropolitics’ – hence my decision to call them ‘necro-nihilists’ rather than ‘cynical nihilists.’ Provisionally ‘necro-nihilism’ can therefore be described as ‘the denial of intrinsic value in anything, specifically living beings, detectable in beliefs and corresponding behaviour intent on destroying living beings, from insects such as bees, through marine and land animals such as dolphins, fowls, cattle and deer, to humans.’ 

In this redacted video, Tucker Carlson (who needs no introduction) sheds important light on this phenomenon, where he comments on Schwab – whom he met not long ago – coming across as an ‘elderly idiot,’ incapable of saying anything sensible, let alone impressive or awe-inspiring, as one might expect from the repulsive poster boy of the vaunted New World Order. Carlson compares Schwab with Victoria Nuland (a ‘sad, fat dumb girl’), whom he finds equally unimpressive and mediocre. This has led him to the alarming conclusion that the people who are in positions of decision-making and influence don’t really know what they are doing (including Antony Blinken) – and yet, the consequences of their decisions and actions affect all of us, mostly detrimentally, of course. 

The punch line in the redacted video (linked above) comes when Clayton Morris, one of the presenters, sums Carlson’s insights up with the remark, that ‘…he has admitted that these guys are idiots who love to destroy the things that they don’t build; they like to tear down the things they don’t build…’

Perhaps Carlson’s most profound psychological insight comes in that part of his interview played by the Morris duo, where he perspicaciously observes that the reason why Schwab and his like-minded mediocre ilk tear down things that other people built – from beautiful railway stations to the legal code to Harvard University – is because they are ‘envious.’ He compares them to the barbarians who sacked Rome (in the 5th century BCE), because they were envious of something that they could not have built themselves, which means that they were really just vandals, just like the people who write graffiti on beautiful buildings. Carlson also remarks that this motive (envy) is the ‘oldest in the world.’ 

I have never taken Carlson to be an authority on Freud, but here his insight converges with that of the father of psychoanalysis. In Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego (p. 3812 of the Standard Edition of Freud’s Complete Psychological Works, edited by James Strachey) – to mention only one of the occasions where he does so – Freud writes about ‘…the initial envy with which the elder child receives the younger one.’ This most archaic of social feelings is born in the context of fraternal co-existence, therefore, where the elder child perceives with acute envy the love lavished on the new arrival (which he or she also received, of course, as Freud observes; hence the envy). 

In his keen perception of this Freud provided his successors with the means to understand why envy can lead to such vicious consequences. To put it in Lacanian terms (Jacques Lacan was Freud’s French successor), it is because envy relates to one’s inability to copy; that is, experience the other’s jouissance, that it spurs individuals to act in often destructive ways. Jouissance, for Lacan, is singular for every individual subject, as it is bound up with one’s unique, unrepeatable (unconscious) desire – fundamentally, not in the sexual sense, but as that which distinguishes one from all others. It is what motivates one to do the things you do, in short. (For more on this, see my paper on Lacan and the question of the psychotherapist’s ethical orientation.) 

For Lacan envy is therefore not synonymous with jealousy; one is jealous of something the other has or possesses – like a swanky car, or wealth – but envy is more primordial: you envy something the other experiences, which you cannot. So, for instance, a very rich person, who is unhappy despite their wealth, may envy a poor fisherman for enjoying a celebratory meal and a drink with their family after a good catch. 

This seems to be the case with the neo-fascist cabal, if Carlson is right – and I believe he is. Despite all their wealth – they are mostly billionaires – they seem to lack the capacity for simple enjoyment, and consequently, their envy for the rest of us knows no bounds. After all, our awareness of the menace to human existence that they pose notwithstanding, we continue meeting under festive circumstances, chatting, laughing, dancing, singing, and drinking wine. My wife and I go dancing virtually every weekend, and other patrons at the restaurant that regularly features a live band, frequently compliment us on the evident pleasure we gain from boogeying to the beat of (mostly) rock ‘n roll. 

By glaring contrast, the jouissance of the globalist technocrats, such that it is, consists in planning and executing devious ways to annihilate (a particularly apt word here, considering its lexical link with ‘nihilism’) the rest of us, with ne’er a moment’s remorse or guilt – the telltale incapacity of a psychopath. It is hard for anyone who knows the feeling of remorse to fathom such a mindset. Who has not felt guilt in their lives, on occasions when one has done something, either inadvertently or deliberately, which has resulted in the discomfort or suffering of another person? But I doubt whether there is anything inadvertent in the destructive actions and strategies of the cabal and their willing servants. On the contrary, it has been planned (and sometimes rehearsed) meticulously. 

If it is indeed the case that the necro-nihilism at the root of the democidal globalists’ jouissance is what drives them to unspeakable acts of evil, do we have any reason to anticipate a possible turning point in their programme of destruction, perhaps accompanied by signs of contrition? I think not; in fact, I am certain that this will not happen, given the indications that a bird-flu ‘pandemic’ may be in the offing – one which, by all accounts, will dwarf the Covid ‘pandemic’ as far as mortality is concerned. Considering that, under ‘natural’ conditions, avian flu is not easily spread from animals to humans, but that a number of such infections have been reported recently, it takes no Sherlock Holmes to infer that something like ‘gain-of-function research’ has modified the virus to facilitate such animal-to-human (if not human-to-human) transference. 

Conclusion? Far from showing any sign of reaching a point where some modicum of conscientisation on their part is occurring – in the face of a plethora of undeniably reputable studies pertaining to the deadly effects of the Covid ‘vaccines’ (evident in the phenomenon of excess deaths, for example) – everything points in the direction of an exacerbation of the necro-nihilistic activities of the neo-fascists. Which means that we, the resistance, cannot afford to lower our vigilance for the proverbial second.  

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  • Bert Olivier

    Bert Olivier works at the Department of Philosophy, University of the Free State. Bert does research in Psychoanalysis, poststructuralism, ecological philosophy and the philosophy of technology, Literature, cinema, architecture and Aesthetics. His current project is 'Understanding the subject in relation to the hegemony of neoliberalism.'

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