This transcript appears in the December 17, 2021 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
The Squid Game and Other Things To Come
This is the edited transcript of Jacque Cheminade’s presentation to Panel 4, “The Beauty of True Human Nature,” of the Schiller Institute’s Nov. 13-14 conference, “All Moral Resources of Humanity Have To Be Called Up: Mankind Must Be the Immortal Species!” Mr. Cheminade is the President of the French political party, Solidarité et Progrès, a former candidate for the Presidency of France, and a long-time associate of Lyndon LaRouche. Subheads and embedded links have been added.
Ideas are what is required as the source for the increase of man’s power over nature to generate an economic platform to increase our potential relative population-density. Forming ideas based on principles, and the concentration of our creative capacities on such principles is what nourishes our power to discover. This is what defines our capacity to create a future, the capacity to survive as a species. If you destroy such power, such power to generate ideas, you therefore destroy the future.
It is precisely what is happening here and now, under the permanent lightning bolts of raw, bestial emotions thrown through the screens of our digital equipment. Our adolescents and children are immersed in a universe combining hyper-violent video-games, trash and gore, pornography, and TV series, particularly those of Netflix, conveying a world of virtual fantasies which destroys the concentration of our creative capacities. The flow of images targets the non-cognitive modes of fantasy life imagery, associating erotic compulsions with bestial violence. If we let this assault continue, the result will be no future.
These are not just counter-culture tricks controlled by commercial forces; it is a geopolitical intention to infantilize and bestialize through the hacking of our minds. It is a conscious policy of an Anglo-American oligarchy to transform citizens into subjects, sickened with an indifferent depravity to real crimes, becoming subjects prone to submit willfully to ruling powers, being transformed into impotent voyeurs of various games of thrones.
The Open Conspiracy
Some of you may consider what I am saying as a conspiratorial view. I am going to start by showing you some relevant images and then go into the gist of a crucial written by Lyndon LaRouche on December 10, 1997, The Wells of Doom, urging us not to cling to the sinking ship of an evil “Open Conspiracy,” set by H.G. Wells himself, the lackey of the British oligarchy.
The Queen of England personally visited the set of the TV series called Game of Thrones, in the British province of Ulster, which series has been followed by billions of human beings all over the world and her visit was broadcast internationally. That TV series, with 73 episodes released over eight years, is as an addictive drug, mixing fantasy, sex, violence and lust for power.
The Queen, visiting the set, advances trotting, trotting ahead of Prince Philip who had sadistically tested with his fingers the sharpness of a panoply of various pseudo-medieval weapons. The Queen then reaches the iron throne, made of swords belonging to defeated landlords, and the actors of the series suggest that she might want to sit on the throne. She answers bluntly “No! No!” She obviously believes that her own throne gives her more power.
Why would the Queen of England visit the set of Game of Thrones and greet the crew? The Queen of England checking out the actors of a TV series? Well, there we have an illustration of the not-so-soft power of a monarchy examining, with a perverse indifference, one of the main weapons of her ideological power: playing with the infantile bestialization of our emotions.
Now let’s reach a temporary step forward: the Squid Game. Temporary, because other things will come, if we let things proceed as they are. There you have a series of nine episodes (Game of Thrones had eight times as many) launched by Netflix on September 17th. It was viewed by billions of human beings all over the world, as was the Game of Thrones. The Squid Game is a crude image of a world ruled by perverse assassins who organize a com�petition in which the losers will all be killed. The one person who survives will be the winner of a fortune of 45.6 billion won—the series is South Korean—about $39 million.
Of course, the level of carnage and slaughter displayed is not something new. Survival films and videos, such as Hunger Games or the animated, manga types such as Battle Royale, Darwin’s Game, Alice in Borderland, and many others have already been viciously spread around. As I will explain later, there is a thread between the post-World War I, perverse fantasies promoted by H.G. Wells and others, the 1964-1972 mass brainwashing of university campus Baby Boomers, and the present step ahead into a worse quality of hatred and manipulation of fear.
What is new with the Squid Game is not the technological shock of the images, which are only “moderately sophisticated,” as cynical gamers would say, but rather it is the social content. The participants of the game are over-indebted varieties of untermenschen, who have lost everything through the gambling of their lives in the real world. The killer games are viciously derived from innocent children’s games, the first game being like the American children’s playground game, red light, green light, in which participants run towards the finish line. If a player moves at all after being told to stop, that player is eliminated from the game, eliminated by being unmercifully killed.
Guess what? In a lot of European school playgrounds, children are already playing this game. Not killing the loser, but in many cases beating him up or lashing out at him or her. And, big puppets and action figures from the game are for sale in various Asian countries and in the United States.
What then is really new with this game? The combination of desperate, over-indebted prey coming, and continuing to play, with their full democratic consent. With their full democratic consent: After the first mass killing, they all vote either to stay in the game or to leave. And once a majority votes to stop the game. But most of them then come back because, as one character says, “Outside, anyway, we live like animals.”
And finally, they are all killed except the winner. This, after all of the participants had been put in situations, in which they would go on to betray their best friends, in a 21st-Century version of a concentration camp. The whole game has been set up for a group of VIPs, all degenerate, orgiastic oligarchs who take great pleasure in following the killer games. The winner is, in the end, anguished by guilty feelings and gives all his money to the mother and daughter of one of the victims, and the series ends like a snake biting its tail.
The creators of this show present their intention as a “critique” of the murderous behavior of the oligarchical ruling class. But if you compare it to Shakespeare, it is not a challenge to change one’s behavior, but a set of repetitive perceptions creating an addictive confusion in the mind of the viewer. Watching the Squid Game, you are emotionally trapped into a set-up, without any capacity of self-reflection. You are immersed in the game, wearing the shackles of a culture of death.
I have called my presentation “Squid Game and Other Things to Come” as a reference to H.G. Wells to enable us to look at Squid Game not only as a television series but as the present truly extreme moment of the universe being thrown against us. Things to come after, which is doomed to be a universal fascism imposed, in part, through induced consent if we don’t intervene. Because the policy of oligarchical power is to rule by fear and chaos—an engineering of perception based on what a contemporary anonymous French author calls “management sciences.”
It is a nebula of disciplines that began to constitute a coherent corpus from the 1920s onward and for which Information Theory and Cybernetics provide the main ideological lines: namely, living beings and conscious subjects are information systems that can be controlled, modeled, and even hacked in the same way as non-living information systems composed of non-conscious objects. It is aimed at human life itself, because the essence of human life is to escape from any control and create, create; therefore, to reduce it to a set of predictable behaviors means to kill it: the monster generated by the dreams of reason.
The Shape of Things to Come
Back to H.G. Wells. He wrote The Shape of Things to Come as a science fiction dystopia in 1933, two years after Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. In both works, a war leaves the world in ruins, a self-appointed elite takes over to rebuild it, and engages in social engineering to refashion human society.
In Wells’ conception, the Second World War takes place—a war fought between countries on the verge of economic collapse (reminds you of something?) with both sides launching aerial bombings against each other’s main cities. Governments break down, industries and urban centers are destroyed, and a strange and terrible pestilence, a wandering sickness, spreads throughout the world killing a large part of humanity in 1956 and 1957. Civilization nearly ends, but a benevolent dictatorship of an advanced Air Force elite takes over, abolishing organized religions and abolishing nation-states, establishing a modern global world state. “We don’t approve of independent sovereign states,” declares one of the so-called heroes.
After almost a hundred years, the Dictatorship of the Air is overthrown in a bloodless coup and a society of English-speaking polymaths emerges, each equal to the greatest geniuses of the past. Two honorably retired leaders of the benevolent dictatorship comment, as Hamlets from the future: “No rest, no ending for men ... all the universe for nothing.... Animals, men mattering no more than other little animals.”
A movie was produced in 1936 as a mass promotion of Wells’ fantasies, featuring the airplanes of the elite gassing people on the ground, in a 1930’s version of Star Wars.
Lyndon LaRouche, looking at the state of the world in 1997, examined this in his , the “Wells of Doom,” giving us the leads to get rid of the nightmare becoming true. The fact that the situation is much worse now than it was in 1997, as Squid Game gives us a sense of today, makes LaRouche’s message even more urgent to assimilate, to enable us to purge ourselves of the ruling western counter-culture.
All these dystopic hare-brained ideas have a point in common, Malthusianism: the debasing of the value of human life within a system of rules which acknowledge no principle. In Wells’ movie, the benevolent dictators don’t hesitate to gas the rebel populations, described as so backward that no other choice was left to the elite. For ruling over them, Wells gives his recipe in his autobiography:
In a world where pressure on the means of subsistence was a normal condition of life, it was necessary to compensate for the removal of traditional sexual restraints, and so my advocacy of simple and easy love-making had to be supplemented by an adhesion to the propaganda of the Neo-Malthusians.
It is our present counter-culture of depopulation—already in the world of H.G. Wells—and, as John Maynard Keynes might say, peppered with sex and statistics.
Our task is therefore to apply the Socratic method to smoke out the hidden perverse assumptions underlying our beliefs and to establish the basis for a true culture of life, search for happiness (not pleasures), and discovery. Lyndon LaRouche in that 1997 article said clearly, “Thus, today, the near obliteration of Classic artistic culture from the U.S. population,” I would add, and from the whole Western world, “and its replacement by the most debased expressions of Dionysiac revels, is the major internal security threat to the continued existence of our republic.”
The Human Passion of Agapē
Against the depraved indifference to principle, LaRouche refers to the human quality of agapē, expressed as a passion for truth and justice, natural law being the impact of the efficiently-served agapic passion of mankind, made in the cognitive image of God, opposed to oligarchical principles of law. [To] replace entertainment, premised on erotic perceptions, and each time more and more on a morbid fascination with death, with agapē, is thus required to stop the corrosive descent into destructive cultural pessimism that followed in the years after World War I. And now worse, in our times of wars against the weak and the poor conducted with an induced, horribly pervasive, depraved indifference.
Agapē powers the capacity of the human mind to generate discoveries of new, validated principles, and to transmit these discoveries to other minds. This latter characteristic, stresses LaRouche in 1997, correlates with anti-entropy:
More profoundly, it is this same human cognitive anti-entropy which defines the anti-entropic relationship of the human species to the universe at large. …
The suppression of agapē, as by eliminating the factor of classical art [results in] a form of escapism into synthetic virtual realities, converging on erotically motivated forms of moral and intellectual degeneracy.
This is the battlefield for our minds. And that is the reason why I wanted to start with Game of Thrones and Squid Game, not as things in themselves, but as evidence of an evil culture that we shall once and for all throw into the river, to never return.
I am optimistic about the success of our fight, very optimistic: first, because creative and moral potentials are the essence of our species; second, because soon people are going to be convinced by their living conditions, the future of their children, and the state of mind of their children, that there is no other way to go, to change.
In China, the access to video games for children has already been restricted to at most one hour per day on holidays only. The content of series is under control, to eradicate pornography and bloody scenarios. I was recently happily surprised to read in the Sunday supplement of Femina Hebdo—a French magazine usually promoting silly things for women—an article on the influence of the series. It says that video games are produced with:
colossal means of financing and based on neuroscience. Everything is done to mobilize our brain nonstop: visual and auditory stimuli, emotional extremes, narrative mechanisms… The scenario provides a very strong emotion, but when the episode ends, the emotion dissipates, everything then goes down. It is like a mini-depression. To get back another dose of pleasure, we follow up with the next one. We can measure the danger. It is easy for the series to impose upon us their way to see the world. Besides, they are mobilized as a weapon of geopolitical influence.
When such a diagnosis is usefully formulated in such an unsuspected place, there is plenty of room for hope, provided that we go deeper and deeper, not only into our Resistance but much more, much more, into providing the moral, economic and social ways to rebuild an anti-entropic, happy world, leaving the screens of our present cave.