||This article appears in the February 15, 2008 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
The British Empire's Suicide Club:
The Noun Generation
by Delante Bess and Nick Walsh, LaRouche Youth Movement
[PDF version of this article]
An ordinary member who comes here in search of death like yourself," replied the paralytic, "returns every evening until fortune favors him. He can even, if he is penniless, get board and lodging from the President."
Robert Louis Stevenson, The Suicide Club
What would cause seven young friends, growing up in Bridgend, South Wales, over the course of a year, to hang themselves, one after the other, all within the vicinity of their small town? The ongoing suicidal tendencies of the British empire's policy-making, including the imminent possibility of a repeat of the 1923 Weimar Germany hyperinflation, and an intended Felix Rohatyn and George Shultz-inspired, Michael Bloomberg fascist dictatorship in the United States, create, as the 19th-Century sociologist Emile Durkheim defines, an environment of anomie for a young mind to develop in; nonetheless, in this, and other extreme cases, there is something more.
As in the extreme events of the Perugia, Italy murder, the Jokela High School massacre in Finland, the Omaha mall shootings, and many other recent, youthful acts of social psychosis, there is an underlying common cause, in addition to the apparently hopeless Malthusian world administered by the British empire today. As in Robert Louis Stevenson's The Suicide Club, a trilogy of short stories, there must be a daring group, a club, or a "chat room," where young people's desperate, uneducated minds have their fantasies twisted into dehumanized actions, to be carried out in society. Today, that "suicide club," recruiting youth to do the extreme, is not a real place, or location, as Stevenson's "club" was physically based in London, but rather, is a digitalized place, a nowhere land, invented in the cold minds of the social programmers who engineer today's Internet "social networking" sites.
The most popular clubs today are MySpace, Facebook, and, as in the case of our Bridgend, South Wales tragedy, the British website Bebo. As the goth-existentialist Robert Louis Stevenson wrote in his story, "There was a tacit understanding against moral judgments; and whoever passed the club doors enjoyed already some of the immunities of the tomb. They drank to each other's memories, and to those of notable suicides in the past. They compared and developed their different views of deathsome declaring that it was no more than blackness and cessation; others full of a hope that that very night they should be scaling the stars and commercing with the mighty dead." And, as today, Stevenson notes that his suicide club is composed of "people in the prime of youth, with every show of intelligence and sensibility in their appearance, but with little promise of strength or the quality that makes success. Few were much above thirty, and not a few were still in their teens."
The Ace of Clubs
Today, Bebo, MySpace, and Facebook are, for youth of the 14-to-25-year age bracket, places where, once you "log in," you're already dead; and, these Internet tombs, a capital weapon in the British empire's warfare against human civilization, are frequented by today's youth in the privacy and security of their own bedrooms, with mummy and daddy, oftentimes, right downstairs. The intentionally destructive nature of the sites, has everything to do with the digital nature of cyberspace itself, where anything is allowed, except that which distinguishes man from the beast: human cognition. Combine this unknowable, paranoid medium for "communication," with the fairy tale, and also suicidal logic of today's globalized "information economy," and one has all the ingredients necessary for a youth culture that can be programmed to commit the most horrific and senseless acts imaginable. This programming turned into Internet "social networking," is the intended effect of freakish Internet Olympians such as Rupert Murdoch and Bill Gates, who each have insisted, at various times, mimicking their controllers in the British empire, that the human mind is no better, if not worse, than a silicon microchip.
In the case of Bridgend's Leah Phillips, who survived her attempted hanging, due to her stepfather's intervention, she claimed to have no memory of her suicide attempt, nor knowledge of a reason for why she did it. She did, however, tell police who were investigating the hangings, that Bebo should be monitored to prevent more death: "People are going on to Bebo and talking to other teenagers, but it is all going too far and it is ending in bullying and suicides," Phillips warned them. Bridgend's coroner Phillip Walters, who has conducted inquests for many of the victims, also pointed his finger in this direction, saying that he is "desperately concerned" about the chain of young suicides, and of the connection to teenage social network sites such as Bebo and MySpace. He said, "I shall be looking at these networking sites myself to see if there is a link between them and the growing number of youngsters committing suicide. But in the meantime, I want to warn youngsters about the possible dangers these websites can pose. I would also like to warn parents to be actively on the alert for signs of their children being influenced by others on these sites."
The seven youth thus far involved in the Bridgend suicide club over the past year, had all been friends, and spent large amounts of time, a few as many as three to five hours per day, "logged in" to Bebo. Just as in the case of the Internet-driven school shootings at Paducah, Kentucky, or in the case of Alan Greenspan's own, now admitted, historical incompetence as chairman of the Federal Reserve, it is unclear whether these Bridgend suicide cases were actually conscious of what they did. In these and related cases, it is as if an unseen demonic force, like the ghost of Ayn Rand, or Bill Gates, suddenly hacks into the person's soul and carries them into action. The survivors, looking back, are often at a loss to explain what they did.
Let us spy, for a moment, at the Bebo pages of the youths involved in our active Bebo Suicide Club in Bridgend, South Wales. These youth, already living as miserable subjects in a post-industrialized British empire, had, like fools in a Bosch painting, found their purpose in hedonistic pleasures. Their web pages are covered with their exploitations. However, with the added obsession of Bebo and MySpace addiction, their thrill-seeking takes an even more misdirected turn.
But society is not only something attracting the sentiments and activities of individuals with unequal force. It is also a power controlling them. There is a relation between the way this regulative action is performed and the social suicide-rate.
Emile Durkheim, Suicide: A Study in Sociology
The most recent suicide victim in this case, Natasha Randall, whose screen name was "sxiwildchild," wrote boldly at the top of her page, "Don't Play Games With a Girl Who Knows How to Play Them Better." In response to the suicide of her friend Liam Clarke, shortly before her own suicide, Randall had written, "RIP Clarky boy!! gonna miss ya! always remember the gd times! love ya x. Me too!" And more recently, in response to Randall's suicide, another friend posted on Randall's page, "RIP tashcan't believe you done it!" And another, "Heyaa Babe. Just Poppin In To Say I Let My Balloon Off With A Message On It, Hope You Got It Ok And It Made You Laugh Up There."
This is not only the social milieu of a suicide club, but it is a form of symbol-minded language, and disassociation from reality, only possible on either mind-altering psychedelics, like LSD, or, today's cyberspace. This is a type of domain for schizophrenic expressions of what Lyndon LaRouche and other specialists would call ontological nominalism.
Not coincidentally, these websites, originated out of MK-Ultra's Silicon Valley mind-control experiments, are programmed to trap the individual addicted to them in this type of psychosis: a non-living digital tomb, a club, where the person's identity, increasingly digitized, and thus decorticated from human reason, has only one increasingly compelling option available to terminate their living hell.
A point of reference for understanding this is Emile Durkheim's 19th-Century sociological case study of suicides. For although the empirically observable trend of the Bridgend epidemic looks like a type of contagion or mere "copy-cat" phenomenon, that simply does not locate the cause, or exterior force, shaping the cultural matrix around these individuals. For our purposes, we must seek out a dynamics which subsumes this case, rather than the individual particulars of many different situations.
Popular investigators and media reporters today, in the digital tradition of Sherlock Holmes, actually contribute to the problem, scrambling over each other like bloodhounds for the best sniff of the latest isolated clue. But the stinking elephant in the room goes undetected, i.e., the digital world environment, which these youth locate their souls, and hubris, in.
In Durkheim's investigation of the effect of simple "copy-cat" or imitation suicides, he says, "In short, certain as the contagion of suicide is from individual to individual, imitation never seems to propagate it so as to affect the social suicide-rate. Imitation may give rise to more or less numerous individual cases, but it does not contribute to the unequal tendency in different societies to self-destruction, or to that of smaller social groups within each society. Its radiating influence is always very restricted; and what is more, intermittent. Its attainment of a certain degree of intensity is always brief."
This empirical hypothesis is made after a review of quantitative data of different races, heredities, sects, and religions.
When you take the various social dynamic aspects together as a one, Durkheim is right on this point, that suicides do not principally depend upon the congenital qualities of each individual; but upon causes exterior to them; that ultimately dominate them. That exterior force in this case, today, is a despairing, existentialist culture, coupled with digital controlling mechanisms, that reinforce and escalate this despair.
Durkheim's description of anomie, hints at this effect: "In anomic suicide, society's influence is lacking in the basically individual passions, this leaving them without a check-rein." What Durkheim crucially fails to grasp, however, is the nature of the human mind, and therefore, also, the nature of precisely how it can be destroyed.
Hyperlinks: Newsqueak for a Dead Mind
The use of so-called "Newspeak" language to interact in the digital world, does not correspond to anything in the real world; but, is perceived to the naive mind as something that possesses a true relevance to real-life interactions. This creates a battle between two universes, the real and the virtual, intended to foster a type of existentialist schizophrenia.
Take the role of Wikipedia, and related websites, where the fastidious individual is supposedly researching a subject or word, but, is barraged with an overload of "hyperlink," noun-based words. That individual, navigating through "virtual cyber-space," frantically clicking on hyperlinked words, no longer has to think of an idea, or image in their mind, of that word; but, the word or object of research is predetermined for them. The collage of predetermined symbols, images, and definitions, resting ultimately upon a fixed, machine-language code, inhibits the mind from acting in a creatively non-linear way.
The natural process of the human mind, when hearing a word ironically situated in a phrase, can take the path of many different ambiguities, especially, if done in a Classically intentional way. The way words are spoken, written, and punctuated, can invoke a plethora of ideas to appear in the mind. Take, for example, the famous opening line of the Act III, Scene 1 soliloquy of Shakespeare's Hamlet, "To be, or not to be," which can only be spoken truthfully according to Shakespeare's intention. Nevertheless, this ironical statement, delivered as intended, triggers the mind to act and actually think. How would Wikipedia deal with the verb, "To be?" What "information" would they link to it? Wikipedia can't deal with verbs! Can a digital computer develop a truthful idea of such a phrase, according to the historical specificity in which Shakespeare was writing this? The richness of the irony surprises the mind to act in a non-linear fashion; one experiences this, effectively, when hearing a good joke!
The substitution of predetermined symbols, pictures, or noun-based definitions for truthful knowledge of the real-physical world, stifles the non-linear creative process of forming any hypotheses. It padlocks the mental capacity for creative change and discovery. Imagine these Bridgend youth, and hundreds of millions of others around the world, investing so much of their time on "social networking sites," with the halting of any creative, or verbal, thinking; with the mind not acting to figure out ironies or paradoxes; in a place prohibiting any scientific hypotheses; a place of virtually dead minds.
Even the most radical empiricists admit the existence of principles. What they deny is the knowability of them, typified by Ernst "no-metaphysics" Mach, Bertrand Russell, and their followers. Universal principles that exist, even those of which the mind is unconscious, at the time, may reappear as thought-objects, not in some "click the link" manner; but in a dynamical, non-mechanistic process of thinking through an unsolved problem. Is it possible to store a universal physical principle in your desktop's recycling bin? Attempt, in the vain spirit of Zeus and Wikipedia, to delete a physical principle from the universe. Where would it end up?
A Self-Doomed Empire
The anomie of MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, et al. exemplifies this extreme form of "click an object" empiricism, and is abused accordingly as the escaping ground for hedonistic fantasy and infantile emotional rage. This is comparable to Plato's allegory of the Cave, and those in it who resist the outside real world. What we witness in the victims of this suicide club, is what competent specialists call "mass schizophrenia as a social phenomenon." Those who are in control of these "social networking sites" are fully aware of this, as LaRouche PAC has documented substantially in the mass distribution pamphlet, "The Noösphere vs. the Blogosphere: Is the Devil In Your Laptop?"
For the honest student or specialist on this subject, Durkheim's treatment of suicide is useful as a starting point of investigation, although, the higher platform from which to view the cause of anomie, i.e., from the standpoint of the subject of creativity, is thoroughly elaborated in all writings of Lyndon LaRouche, and by some of his associates. The British empire's policy, on the other side, of fostering mass cultural insanity, is driven by the desire to deliberately destroy the Classical cultural heritage of Western Civilization. To wit, that so many individuals, even those of some intelligence, are duped into thinking of today's synthetic digital cyberspace, as an actual universe of existence.
The crucial issue here, is the authoritative role which the British empire's Internet social networking sites have over their squeaking mass of youthful victims, who, in response to a destroyed global financial system, have surrendered their minds like scared lemmings, to a medium foolishly accepted as a new Utopia, just as the "counterculture" of the programmed 68er generation was accepted in similar fashion.
In the case of our Bridgend suicide club, it is the medium and nature itself of today's digital networking sites which must become the focus of investigation; for if this social disease is not treated, the atrocities which have been committed thus far, will only be the beginning. The alternative to today's collapsing world is not flight into virtual fantasy, but summoning the courage to be one's true self; to locate oneself in the ongoing 3,000-year fight against oligarchism in Western Civilization; and, to expose those agents of the British empire such as Rupert Murdoch, Bill Gates, and Bebo founder Michael Birch, et al., who have engineered the virtual shackles that are corralling today's younger generation to its own personally styled self-destruction.
 See Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., "From Milken & Enron to Perugia: 'Extreme Events!' " EIR, Nov. 23, 2007.
 See the LaRouche PAC pamphlet, "The Noösphere vs. the Blogosphere: Is the Devil in Your Laptop?" November 2007.
 See Sky Shields, "What Exactly, Is the Human Mind? Analog, Digital, and Transcendental," EIR, Jan. 4, 2008.
 The work of Durkheim has been certified by modern sociologists and psychologists as revolutionary; but, he misses the question of the ontological social principle causing an anomic society. His method can be contrasted to Johannes Kepler's anti-Euclidean approach to the work of Tycho Brahe and Copernicus, by which he, uniquely, discovered the universal physical principle, organizing the Solar System.
 For example, Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., "Life Within the Noösphere: What Is the Human Mind?" EIR, Jan. 11, and Shields, op cit..