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Deliver Us from Evil ...
There's a Bad Moon of Managerialism on the Rise!
G K Chesterton once noted that Original Sin was the only Christian Doctrine that could really be proved. Just look around (and look within) and it’s clear that something went fundamentally wrong. Things are not as they should be, and for all our cleverness and technological sophistication, we cannot put it right. We cannot eliminate Evil; all we can do is manage it. Unfortunately, managing Evil is a Sisyphean task; as C.S. Lewis indicated in the preface to The Screwtape Letters, demons feel right at home among the management of a Late-Stage Bureacracy.
I joined, , , and for another Tonic 7 discussion today, this time about ’s recent tour de force The China Convergence1. The video is available on The Tonic 7 YouTube channel; (embedded below), as well as on Rumble2, and you can listen to it as an audio podcast on all the major podcast platforms like Spotify3 and iTunes4. Lyons’ piece is about the evils of managerialism5, but our discussion quickly shifted to the subject of evil itself.
“Evil,” per se, is hard to wrap your mind around (if you’re psychologically normal). It’s extremely difficult to adequately define or describe, because it involves, at least in its purest and most obvious forms, a state of mind that is unimaginably revolting and alien to the average person. What Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart famously said about pornography is true of Evil as well: you know it when you see it — or do you? We all like to tell ourselves that we know the difference between Good and Evil, but the problem is, Evil is so damn clever at disguising itself!
The most successful practitioners of evil are those that conceal their true motives. They tell us bald-faced lies about what they plan to do and why we should help them do it. They feign emotions so convincingly, and they appeal to your sense of duty with all the noblest-sounding moral language, that almost all of us get taken in by them at some point in our lives. The Devil himself will happily quote scripture when he thinks it will serve his nefarious agenda (see, Mark 4: 10-11), and St. Paul warned that Satan can masquerade as an “angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11: 14). The Devil’s human agents prefer to be similarly clandestine.
Psychopaths excepted, most people do not enjoy seeing others suffer, even in cases where they know that such suffering is necessary for some greater good. (Hence, the “safety first” value system of our matriarchal culture.) So in order to get people to go along with their evil schemes, psychopaths have to engage in subterfuge; that’s why they are so proficient at lying and manipulating others — they’ve had lots of practice! If they just came right out and revealed the true nature of their designs, almost no one would cooperate with them — except for maybe their fellow psychopaths, but only on an ad hoc basis, and with the ever-present threat of betrayal looming overhead (c.f., e.g., the short-lived pact between Stalin and Hitler during World War II).
What makes our high-tech, globalized, postmodern managerial system so diabolical is that it provides Evil with so many places to hide and so many disguises to use. It allows malicious leaders to distance themselves from the harms they cause, thereby helping them evade detection and escape accountability. If these leaders are ever found out, they adroitly avail themselves of lawyerly loopholes to thwart all efforts to make them pay for their crimes.
In those instances where Evil oversteps its bounds so egregiously that a guilty party must be punished, the top evildoers offer the public a lowly scapegoat who takes the fall for everything — and who usually gets killed or “disappeared” before the public can hear the scapegoat’s story. JFK got assassinated in broad daylight, throwing the entire nation into a panicked uproar, so the regime gave us Lee Harvey Oswald for a couple of days, to serve as the object of our misdirected moral outrage, before they allowed Jack Ruby to walk right up to Oswald at a Dallas police station and silence him forever with a .38 Colt Cobra revolver. And now, 60 years later, documents that could expose the real villains behind the Kennedy assassination are still classified — not to protect the guilty individuals (who are long dead), but to protect corrupt systems and institutions that are still firmly in power.
We live in a memetic society6, where symbols are mistaken for Reality because symbols are so much easier to manage. Liturgies and rituals are used to systematize those symbols into a manageable whole. People are rewarded or punished based on their willingness to perform the prescribed rituals and chant the prescribed slogans, regardless of the real-world effects that those rituals and slogans actually have (or don’t have). The symbols are arranged to create a mirage of Potemkin Prosperity, even as the real world becomes increasingly unmanageable. The United States of Enron has become little more than a massive Ponzi Scheme, built on unsustainable debt, and our civilization’s burgeoning Reality Debt is the most unsustainable debt of them all. In this empire of lies, Truth is treason, so the system rewards liars and punishes those who tell the Truth. As Jesus observed, the Devil is the father of lies, and lies are his native tongue (John 8: 44). Thus, the Devil and his minions are rewarded by our managerial system and navigate its byzantine bureaucracies with ease.
There’s a bad moon on the rise, and by its sinister light, we suddenly see a global network of Evil that’s wormed its way through every major institution and snaked its tentacles tightly around our collective necks. As with a circle of mushrooms that sprouts up all at once, what we now see is merely the visible product of an underground network of rot that’s been spreading in darkness for generations. If rainbow-pride marchers chanting about coming for your children are the mushrooms, then pathocratic managerialism is the underground mycelium that makes the visible fruit of this demonic revolution possible.
What does all of this mean? The Evil that’s now ascendant seemingly everywhere is so vast, so multi-faceted, that it’s difficult to understand it or to know how practically to fight against it. It seems to have its ultimate origins in a different dimension of Reality than the ones we are physically able to perceive and operate in. The problem is ultimately spiritual, and most of us lack the vocabulary or framework for making sense of this dimension of our existence. And the architect of this evil control system is the “father of lies” himself, and this architect went out of his way to make it difficult to find the Truth. Sometimes, the best we can do is recognize the signs that we are being lied to and refuse to go along with whatever the con artists want us to do — but even that can be tricky, because our Enemy knows how to play “memetic judo” and use your contrarianism against you. Our project of making sense of it is a lot like the proverbial blind men trying to figure out what an elephant looks like, with each blind man describing the part of the elephant he can feel, and all of their descriptions disagreeing with each other — except that to complicate matters further, many of the blind men are lying about what they feel, because they are so desperate for their descriptions to match the official orthodoxy. You cannot really see the elephant itself; all you can do is feel what’s immediately in front of you and compare that with the reports you hear from others, but half the reports you hear are outright lies, while the other half are hopelessly confusing and incomplete.
I will have more to say about the subject of this Evil Enemy later, after I get some clarity as to how these various loose threads fit together into some kind of coherent whole that I can articulate in any kind of sensible way.
In the meantime, I recommend’s post on The China Convergence and ’s companion piece, to get a sense of how managerialism is being used as the control mechanism to turn all of Mankind into inmates of a worldwide insane asylum. Compare your own observations of this evil, earth-straddling “elephant” with those of other insightful Substackers like , , , , , and ; and check out our (forthcoming) Tonic 7 discussion on this theme, in which we explore some interesting ideas related to Lyons’ post.
Thanks for reading, and God bless!
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Video of the Tonic 7 discussing The China Convergence on Rumble: https://rumble.com/v385w15-two-evil-empires-converge-communist-china-and-globohomo-america-gae.html
Tonic Discussions podcast on Spotify (as well as other podcast platforms):
Tonic Discussions podcast on iTunes: