We're Living In 'The Groundhog Show'

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Published : February 23rd, 2019
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Category : Today's Editorial

It's said that truth mirrors fiction. I'm finding this to be the case more and more these days.

Take the 1993 comedy Groundhog Day. Bill Murray wakes up each day to relieve the exact same daily circumstances and interpersonal interactions. He relives the same day, February 2, over and over again.

No matter what he does, the repetitive cycle won't break.  He goes to sleep, wakes up to his alarm, and it's the morning of Feb 2 again.

Likewise, in The Truman Show, Jim Carrey lives in a simulated environment where everybody's an actor in a popular TV show except him.  For him, it’s his real life.  But although he doesn't realise it, everything around him is completely scripted and fake.

If merge these two movies together, they perfectly describe the world in which we live today.  Welcome to Groundhog Day meets The Truman Show.   Let’s call this mash-up The Groundhog Show.

In this composite story you, the plucky central character, wake up every day in a world where the same mistakes are made over and over again by our so-called "leaders".

Take the central banks, for instance. In this show, they continually blow massive credit bubbles over and over again, which then result in widespread, painful losses when they inevitably burst. And the central planners keep doing this without any indication that they're aware they're repeating the same mistakes. 

Their learning curve is dead flat.  Every day follows the same script as the previous day:

The Fed’s attempts to defeat the business cycle by replacing it with a credit cycle ended badly in 2000 with the horrible Dot-com crash.

Doubling down on that strategy then created the housing bubble and the Great Financial Recession, which resulted in an even worse crisis in 2008.

Neither of those sordid outcomes has factored into the Fed’s thinking, at all, as they -- along with the other major world central banks -- have set about tripling down on their serial bubble-blowing ways, which have resulted in the biggest-ever "Everything Bubble" the world now finds itself in.

There are no good explanations for that behavior, save this one:

Which really isn’t very satisfactory to those of us who are also stuck in this movie, but cursed with the ability to see and remember cause and effect. 

Truthfully, there are no good reasons for why our society is in the mess we’re in. With better decision-making and a modicum of accountability, we could have avoided many of the issues we've created for ourselves:

  • The widest wealth gap in human history
  • Massive income inequality
  • Entire generations saddled with high debts and low opportunities
  • Broken “markets” that have become policy signaling devices for the central planners, offering no price discovery or reliability to investors
  • Ripping the last oil and gas out of the ground as fast as possible while not using any of it to build out a sustainable energy infrastructure
  • Losing species at a rapid pace that nobody can comprehend let alone predict what the effects might be

Living in The Groundhog Show

Our daily experience of the world is now being shaped by people busy writing scripts and narratives that are so preposterous that they might as well be penned by screenwriters grasping for new ideas in the 8th season of a show that has already burned through every conceivable plot angle:

“Hey, how about we write an entire show around the idea of a high school kid standing silently while smiling somehow being existentially menacing to the Native American ‘elder’ that actually started the whole thing by walking up to that legal minor while beating a drum directly in his face?  We could really play around with people’s emotional buttons big time I think…”

The larger plot of this movie, of course, revolves around the increasing difficulty of those stuck in it to continue to buy its premise.  Once you lose the plot line, once you can see the programming for what it is, it becomes nearly impossible to continue to happily participate in a story that lacks any integrity and provides no meaning or purpose.

For example, the Yellow Vest movement in France consists not of a relatively few disturbed extremists on the fringe, but of the majority of the French population. Most citizens of France support and sympathize with the movement. 

But if you read the media headlines -- output by the creators of The Groundhog Show -- you’d be led to believe that the entire movement is populated by a small group of deplorables (the image below is an unaltered screen grab from 2-17-19) :

To scan those headlines you'd be tempted to come away thinking that the Yellow Vests were now all about anti-Semitism and nothing more.  Somehow, magically, the mainstream press from across the globe are all writing the same sorts of articles at precisely the same time and releasing them as if they were announcing the product launch of a new cellphone or something.

Last week, coverage focused on an unsourced poll claiming that over 50% of Yellow Vest supporters believed that Princess Diana had been murdered as part of a conspiracy.  This week we read that a stunning proportion of them believe in a vast Zionist conspiracy.  Perhaps we should start a betting for what next week's "ignore these crackpots" fabrication will be?

Meanwhile, if you actually bother to review the images from the protests, what you see is … people. Lots and lots of people from all over France's socio-economic spectrum, coming out in support of the Yellow Vest movement:

There is a huge grab-bag of reasons why so many people -- tens and tens of thousands per protest -- are out demonstrating. But boiled down, the common theme is that they're finding it harder and harder to get by.

The social promise made to them is failing. Pensioners simply can't support themselves. The youth, and those who've immigrated to France, can't find jobs. Business owners are failing.

The French feel under attack by a system that cares more for assuring that the wealthy get wealthier than it does for its own people. 

To (literally) add injury to insult, thousands of demonstrators have been grievously wounded by militarized French police -- who are using far-too-excessive force when controlling the crowds:

That device atop the firearm is an EoTech holographic laser sight. It places a bright red dot on the point of impact. While it provides no magnification, it does allow both eyes to be open as it’s being used and, most importantly, relieves the operator of having to use precise sight alignment as the projected red dot magically moves with the operators head to always show the true point of impact.  The rifled barrel simply means these devices are quite accurate. 

I just wanted to dispel any notion that it’s somehow accidental that so many people are being shot in the face/eyes during the protests.  The police are intentionally selected protestors as targets, individually, and then shooting to wound, intentionally.

The people of France are taking notice of this. Both that the police are purposely inflicting life-altering injuries and that their President (Macron) implicitly and explicitly endorses these tactics and expresses zero concern for those injured. After several months of protests, he’s not yet visited a single injured person in the hospital or put any limits on the police's suppressive tactics. 

Losing Control

Authorities fear losing control of the narrative.  If they do, there's nothing separating them from sufering the consequences of their disastrous and self-serving decisions. 

This is why instead of talking with the Yellow Vests and carefully weighing the concerns of the majority of France' populace versus the limitless greed and quest for power of its ruling class, the government has instead responded with a full media blackout of the Yellow Vests movement and its demands, while steadily demonizing the protestors. 

They're conspiracy nuts!  No, wait, they're anti-Semites!  Their popularity is dwindling! (but won’t let you access the actual underlying polling data). There's nothing to see here...return to your regular programming

And so on.

What such propaganda actually represents is the paranoia of the elites over losing control of the narrative. They fear any actual opening of a realistic dialog with the people whose lives are impacted by their transparently self-serving decisions.

Because they know their position and current advantage is indefensible, morally and ethically. If the majority were to wake up to that and mobilize, the elites would be overthrown by lunchtime.

Because of that, we need to expect movements like the Yellow Vests to grow both in number and popularity as more people 'wake up to realize they've been living in The Groundhog Show. Though, sadly but predictably, we need to expect more violence, too, as those in power do all they can to protect the status quo:

In a very encouraging sign, young people across the globe, sparked by the actions of a 16-year-old force of nature from Sweden, Greta Thunberg, are engaging in school strikes:

Meet the teens leading a global movement to ditch school and fight climate change

Feb 22, 2019

What could be the largest global strike ever organized will attempt to push world leaders to act aggressively on climate change when it unfolds in three weeks. And it is being orchestrated by unlikely advocates: teenagers.

When you meet Alexandria Villasenor, she seems like your typical 13-year-old. Until a few weeks ago, she was. Now the California native who is living in New York City finds herself as a primary catalyst in the youth climate strike movement and what some believe could be a global watershed moment on climate change.

As the lead organizer of the US Youth Climate Strike, set for Friday, March 15, Villasenor is in a 24/7 race to mobilize the nation's youth. She herself has been skipping school every Friday for the past 11 weeks and protesting in front of the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

"I am on strike every Friday because adults have failed my generation," she told CBS News. "I didn't make this mess with the planet, they did."

Her message to the world's adults is clear: Your time is up, and if you won't act, we will.

(Source)

These observations by the young students participating in these school walkouts is the same as the Yellow Vests: The people in charge have failed us.

That is inarguably true. But there’s nothing in history to suggest that those in power will cede any of it willingly.

For now, the students are being treated with some measure of respect by the press because they're organized around the message of climate change, to which the press has already hitched its own wagon. 

But don’t be surprised if that changes later on should the student’s demands or growing power start to create headaches for the business-as-usual narrative.  If it does, the students will be ignored, and then ridiculed, and then opposed directly -- much the same as the Occupy Wall Street movement was a decade ago.

Conclusion

Make no mistake: The Powers That Be are desperately lashing about as their grip on the narrative, and the power they derive from it, weakens.

The fact that their story is one of unbridled greed and offers a hopeless future works against them.  It's only a matter of time before it all falls apart.

Why?

Because the old regime of infinite growth on a finite planet has run its course.  It’s (well past) time for a new direction. Whether we welcome it or not, we're at the stage where the limits of reality are forcing change upon us.

The Old always hates the New.  The Old will cling to the status quo long past its expiration date, even if that means that everybody loses.

For some reason, this is just the nature of the collective consciousness.  Individuals are brilliant and inspiring, but groups are stubborn and slow.  History repeats.

One of the most important thing you can do in these last days of the Old system is to identify and understand the narrative programming you're being subjected to, so that you can be resist its malign influence.  Nothing good comes from allowing others to decide your priorities and dictate your emotional responses.

It’s time to free yourself and notice what’s actually happening.  To do that, you have to stop watching the screen and look instead at the theatre that's been constructed around you to mimic reality.

Humans are an organism.  We’ve grown to the very edges of our terrarium.  Endless growth is no longer possible, which means that everything from here on out is zero sum.  More for Group A means less for Group B.

It’s that very process that Macron is defending in France.  Ditto for the central banks and the global wealth pie.

The scrum for what remains has only just begun. And we’ll be ridiculously lucky if we evade the same degree of abuses and human suffering that have marred every previous century of the human experiment.

Historical odds suggest we won’t.

In Part 2: Tuning Into Reality, we provide a look into the hard data that those controlling the current narrative don't want you to see. Those of us looking not to become casualities of the system first must arm ourselves with accurate information and insight. Only after achieving that can informed action be taken to improve your future prospects.

Being painfully honest with you: whatever we call the new models for society that emerge from here, they will all be some version of how to best conserve and share a shrinking pool of resources.  The more the old guard tightens its death-grip on the current failing system, the greater the chance it all ends in violent revolution or social collapse.

This is not a terribly new or original story, as history is replete with revolutions and resource wars.  You just happen to live at the first time when the scale is global.

Welcome to The Groundhog Show.

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).

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Dr. Chris Martenson is an independent economist and author of a popular website, ChrisMartenson.com. His Crash Course video series explores the intertwining significance of the “three E’s”—the economy, energy, and environment and offers articulate, dynamic insight into the workings of our monetary system. Chris earned a PhD in neurotoxicology from Duke University, and an MBA from Cornell University. A fellow of the Post Carbon Institute, Chris’s work has appeared on PBS and been cited by the Washington Post. He is a contributor to SeekingAlpha.com. Chris is an accomplished presenter who has offered the Crash Course seminar all over the United States. The online course has been translated into several languages, and been viewed over 1.5 million times. His website offers both daily free content as well as a newsletter service for enrolled members. His goal is to help as many people understand that we are in the midst of a profound economic shift and that equally profound risks and opportunities lie in our future. For those that can see them coming, tremendous advantages exist.
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