Thursday, October 25, 2007

What Are These Shells For?

This description of 'soft fascism' reminded me of something. Can you guess what?
I have argued in the past that violent repression, gulags and mass murder are not in fact the defining characteristics for a state to be 'totalitarian'. The defining characteristic is, as the word itself suggests, that control over people be pervasive and total... mass murderousness, goose-stepping troops, waving red (or whatever) flags are merely an incidental consequence and which can be better described in other ways (such as 'tyrannical, murderous, dictatorial, brutal, national socialist, communist, islamo-fascist etc.).

As a result my view is that we in the west are already well on the way to a new form of post-modern totalitarian state (what Guy Herbert calls 'soft fascism') in which behaviour and opinions which are disapproved of by the political class are pathologised and then regulated by violence backed laws "for your own good'' or "for the children" or "for the environment".

That's right, the 1993 blockbuster Demolition Man!

I can has soft totalitarianism?

In this future, almost everything has been outlawed in the name of our own safety: salt, fatty food, guns, manual driving and of course, sexual intercourse. Sound familiar?

In this world, a man played by a cooler, previous version of Dennis Leary leads the freedom rebellion. He pretty sums up my response to the nightmare 'soft' police state we're heading to:
You see, according to Cocteau's plan I'm the enemy, 'cause I like to think; I like to read. I'm into freedom of speech and freedom of choice. I'm the kind of guy likes to sit in a greasy spoon and wonder - "Gee, should I have the T-bone steak or the jumbo rack of barbecued ribs with the side order of gravy fries?" I WANT high cholesterol. I wanna eat bacon and butter and BUCKETS of cheese, okay? I want to smoke Cuban cigar the size of Cincinnati in the non-smoking section. I want to run through the streets naked with green Jell-o all over my body reading Playboy magazine. Why? Because I suddenly might feel the need to, okay, pal? I've SEEN the future. Do you know what it is? It's a 47-year-old virgin sitting around in his beige pajamas, drinking a banana-broccoli shake, singing "I'm an Oscar Meyer Wiener".

Amen! Preach it!

Unfortunately, this isn't a joke. I fear that in the near future we'll try to look back at this movie and find this inocuous movie from the 90's was banned for objectional content. Wouldn't want people reminded of how free their parents were. No sir.


Perry de Havilland said...

Yup, you are right. I had completely forgotten this movie but that really is the future we are headed for.

Moron Pundit said...

Who knew a ridiculous quasi-scifi action movie could prove so prescient?