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Mind Control TV Drama vs. Religious Dogma

There is nothing to fear but fear itself.


Was it George Orwell who said that?  Or has he got too much credence for contemporary cultural events?  


Feel the fear and do it anyway.


I frequently do and find that the consequences I was expecting have not come to pass.


Are we labrats as the Control programme on Sci Fi channel described mind control victims yesterday (05/12/04) mutating the outcome by our divergent paths through the maze of free will?  Logarithms subjected to continuous bombardment with decisive situations to the point of collapse through psychological overwhelm by outside forces?  Or merely the product of too much sitting with nothing to do in this overcrowded culture of excess?  Where is the synthesis between neurone and informational technology, is it invisible and processed by waves or beams of non perceivable energy, or is it cognitive – developed by experience and context?


In the programme a man was drawn into a world where the future was already known.  An outside stranger approached and altered reality by harsh and sudden violence (murder by gunshot) and this promoted in the witness who was the intended target, a sense that his history had already been written.  On waking from the trauma, he found a presence speaking to him but imperceptible by sight.  The disincarnate voice coming across as the sound of authority bullied him into a murderous decision – to terminate his own wife.


Of course as a female viewer I am used to such portrayal of women as expendable additions to the main protagonists masculine viewpoint, but it is always offensive.  This offence is compounded when the targeted wife or girlfriend or otherwise female character is revealed as treacherous – untrustworthy, scheming or emotionally cold.

In this Sci Fi drama the wife became a Medusa covert agent and when the husband succumbed to the disincarnate voice’s instructions to shoot her dead, she arose unharmed and informed her assailant that he had failed his mission and been compromised.


This was a nice switch.  Instead of being left an abject corpse on the sofa, shot dead by her husband in a trivial argument, the victim of a domestic dispute, the wife became an inviolable superhero with extra powers – powers through technology and knowledge, and a type of cerebral programming which seems genetic.


She is the pawn of the devil, she says, a player in a game designed to test his cognitive and moral abilities.  Memory is erased and the game of coupledom, the dance of hetero pairing begins again.  Once more they are wife and husband in a relationship of trust.  She convinces him that his memories are faulty and resumes her caring role.  By close observation of items present at their wedding (a china plate set) his trust crumbles into disbelief when he realizes the plate set was shot to pieces and reglued.


Fortunately, their relationship is strong enough to overcome both their conditioning by the electronic stalkers and the trauma of recent events.  Their manipulation and controlled behaviour is swept aside by their human commitment to life and love and they go hand in hand to the source.  Confronting the ‘man behind the curtain’ like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, they find he is a holographic projection.  As a fluid flux of electronic light emissions he is able to appropriate their rebellion unfazed, much as the mainstream of culture buys the rebellious street culture which attacks it.


The couple are seen walking free in the daylight, searching for God – allowed to escape their limitations as labrats and trained assasins – part of a larger and more profound programming.


The neural emissions of fear and pain, drained from the citizens by the systems electronic memory storage systems are turned back onto the oppressors.


But what if this scenario was not imposed by blackclad riot police stylee humanoids with nonlethal mindcontrol weaponry, as depicted by Sci Fi, but by invisible demons – would the result be the same?


What if it were not an underground covert government or private laboratory which was placed as the source but instead a dimension just out of reach but palpably close?


If you could not find the source of the voices and could not trace the harassment to humans, would you have to invent them as go-betweens in order to be able to deal with it rationally?


The go-between then or the intermediary agency (real or imagined) would gain power by association.  You may shoot the messenger but the message is the same and remains – you are being watched over, controlled, guided and smothered – whether it be by your wife, co-workers, the agency,  the government or God.  The message is that you are not alone, but caught in a dependant web of communicative structures which rely on your continued exertion and the development of your mind.


In the olden days, religious fanatics went mad because they felt the watchful eye of God upon them constantly.  Unable to relax by sexual release, constantly agonizing over moral dilemmas and straining to please an invisible deity – their humanity became bent out of shape by the terror of what would happen if the Godhead was displeased.  They would end up in Hell they feared, tormented with pitchforks for all eternity unable to escape or put right the disaster which had befallen them.


Are we not already in Hell?  If we are not dehydrating, dying of diseases, starving or stressed, being bombed, working too hard, suffering a life of silent pain and obscurity, then perhaps we are slaves to others with no free will, freedom of expression or recognition to look forward to.


If the Celestial Realms are Heaven then we are in the Underworld, so who is watching us?  Is the Lord or Lady Evil or Good?  Is the pitchfork prodding demon seeking to improve us or condemn us?  Whether that be a human with an electronic device or a soul worker, or our own conscience (con science?).  In the end is the dilemma whether one can live with oneself, with the decisions made and the choices taken.  In the Buddhist tradition this seems to be the case – there are demonic realms, but the enlightened knows it is the perception one holds to the events which make them real for you.  It is your belief which channels the experience.  There is nothing to fear but fear itself, or - the belief in fear makes it fearful.  Religions are a structure of interaction with the Divine, a structure through which to drive the car (Ka) of the soul, a tried and tested method of journeying from birth to death, with honour and conscience intact, but they have been corrupted as we always knew they would by the Tower of Babel experience where language was used by those in power to confuse and separate the populace, after the populace had got too close to Authority/God/Gods.


So, the silent voice in your head which isn’t yours, is a voice outside of language, a voice across borders.  This doesn’t mean that every disincarnate voice you hear is God.  When mad people say after a hideous crime “God told me to do it” this may make the news but does not reflect the entire experience.  How many of us have been prompted to do good things by that same still small voice?  If nine times out of ten the voice or voices say to do good things, and then once says “push that person under a train” (or whatever) is the voice evil or good?  Can we see the outcomes, can we judge?  Usually the line is drawn when it comes to criminal behaviour and murder.  In the Control programme on Sci Fi, if the silent voice had instructed “shut that door” rather than “shoot your wife” (in a Larry Grayson manner or not) it would’ve been a friend not a foe.


All religions tell us to commune with God, send the Divine thoughts with your mind, offer candles or incense or food in praise, and to be aware of being watched.  We have all spent centuries praying.  Are we not expecting a response?


Is the fear that humans have intervened and bought their devices from some outlawed retail outlet for electrical psitech or that the military have built powerful transmitters or that a commercial provider has crossed the line on civilian surveillance?  Sorry, but once again it comes down to either you believe or you do not, and what you believe is up to you.  They can make up history, they can feed you lies – but some things you can feel in your heart – spiritual connection, nature, a sense of rightness within yourself.  We are spoilt labrats in a comfortable artificial environment, burning up the Earth’s riches, greedily eating our hearts out.  Something is calling, something needs to be heard.  It may have no body, it may be no thing, but it is still a presence whether it be: Demonic, Godly or Alien; Father, Son or Holy Ghost; Mother, Child or Soul; Mind, Body or Spirit.

She Done Him Wrong (1933) was one of Mae West's films about violence and gender politics which ushered in unfortunately for her a backlash against women protagonists in movies, limiting their freedom of expression and placing them in a subordinate sidekick role.

Considering the difference which this film provides for a female spectator, and it's value to feminist film theory, I noticed when I first saw this film, how Mae's character drives the narrative in a way I had not recognised before, packed full of her wisecracks which poke fun at gender restrictions/distinctions - An example is when Lady Lou (Mae West) offers Captain Cummings (Cary Grant) a cigarette.  At his refusal she muses "Yes, I guess smoking will make a man look effeminate before long!".  As a wisecracking Dame Mae was able to overcome oppression and laugh, enjoying her own "new conception of the femme fatale as an open-hearted and healthily honest Diamond Lil type." (Eric Braun, 1970 p. 27).


Feminist film theoretician Laura Mulvey has said that within classic narrative Hollywood cinema the spectator position is necessarily a masculine one.  The female character has the passive burden of being in the plot only to be a fetishized object of male desire, restricting her role to being a catalyst for his reaction.  Where then is the position for a female spectator to take up?  Who is she identifying with, and where is the embodiment of her fetishized desire?


In her groundbreaking article "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema" Mulvey suggests that the only position for a female spectator is in identifiying with the male protagonist, however, it did not give her pleasure to leave the female gaze "restless in transvestite clothes" (Laura Mulvey, 1981 p. 15) and she has said that "the text and its attendant identifications are affected by a female character occupying the centre of the narrative arena" (p 12).


Mulvey concentrates in her analysis, on films which portray the female central protagonist as oscillating between passive (electricians to magicians equate this with feminine) and active (anthropocentrically defined as the masculine position) behaviour.  As such, these women are not stable sexual identities - they cannot truly be themselves within the rigid confines of "correct" femininity - and when they try to escape through phallic power identification, they are invariably "punished and controlled by assimilation to the desire of the male character" (Gamman/Marshment 1988 p. 118)


Mae West's value to feminist film theorists therefore is in her inversion of the power dynamics within male-female relationships, creating a crisis within the stasis of heterosexist ideology:  "She does the things we women would like to do - but do not dare!  Just as in every man there is a bit of the feminine, so in every woman there is a bit of the masculine." (Rush, 1934 p. 109)


This could not go unpunished within patriarchy however - the character upon which citizen Kane (1948) was based, William Randolph Hearst had only to write "is it not time something should be done about Mae West?" and she was rendered impotent by the National Legion of Decency - Hays Code.  "She boldly looked a man up and down the way a man looked a woman over ... She was the reason film censorship was invented." (Clayton, 1993 p. 10)


Amazing isn't it.  Look at how they treat women in films now.  Constantly getting disempowered, raped and playing treacherous character roles who get punished in increasingly offensive ways, yet despite the obvious censorship apparent in negative depictions, there seems to be no space for a backlash against this tide of misogynistic cinematic abuse.


The impact for a female audience then of watching a female protagonist in the cinema in this example of She Done Him Wrong (1933) is one of vindication - our enemies will think the worst of us no matter what we do, therefore, we should do what we want and survive as best we can within a hostile environment.  Lady Lou's calm and resigned persona allows her to breeze through awkward, dangerous or even murderous situations with style and wit, never losing her composure and it is this that drives the plot and the viewer's fascination with the film.


Eric Braun 1970 Doing What Comes Naturally, Films & Filming v.17


Laura Mulvey 1981 Framework Magazine numbers 15/16/17


Lorraine Gamman 1988 The Female Gaze: Women as Viewers of Popular Culture


Justine Clayton 1993 "Mae West: The Biggest Blonde of Them All" Classic Images Magazine number 213


Dana Rush 1934 "Back of the West Front" Photoplay Magazine v.45



I don’t want a man (or woman) to get too close or for sex.  It doesn’t seem right and they/we can’t be trusted.

I know they like me, but I’m ugly (you said) and a bit of a trophy.

Once you go into the mind realm, nothing physical seems to matter.

I want to remain alone and mad (magnetic/microwave anomaly debate/division) and not be forced into a crowd I’m supposed to lead – it seems too easy and frightening.

A lone mad nun/none on a mountain a lone.

Leave me alone, he said.  But is he or is he not alone, and am I?  No man is an island, but we are all ice bergs – the magic arrives in the connections, or breathes in the connections.

All the pain I’m causing by my absence from friends and family and acquaintances and would-be partners, is surely better than the dynamic events which follow and occur during contact.

Flash in the pan reactions and exchanges.

The professional word is ‘brainstorm’.

Always remember, there is no 'truth' only opinions.  Write your own truth and think for you.  The world is saturated with males as 'authorities', and women as 'victims' and it needs to change.

I'm not the only one who thinks this, see Serpent of Light book.

In 2012, just before I got on a bus on Waterloo Bridge, I saw a red ufo in the sky, a witness saw it too. It was above Shirley 's show.

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