The Dictatorship of the Future - Aldous Huxley's Interview
Aldous Huxley, the prophetic author of Brave New World, died on the same day as President John F. Kennedy - November 22, 1963. Unfortunately, Huxley also passed away on the same day as author C.S. Lewis.
Because of this, news reports of both C.S Lewis and Aldous Huxley fell into the shadows of the President's assassination. This coincidence prompted the writing of a book, Between Heaven and Hell, which discussed the imaginary dialogue between the three leading intellectuals somewhere in purgatory on their journey to places beyond.
While Peter Kreeft's book focuses on the debate between the three men and their differing views on religion, I see this more as the three voicing agreement that the world is headed for a totalitarian takeover, with Huxley leading the discussion. Huxley explains to Kennedy that the greatest threat is not from the Soviet Union but from within our nation. And Huxley agrees with Lewis that totalitarianism violates natural law - God's law.
"I think the dictatorship of the future will be very unlike...the immediate past," said Aldous Huxley in his 1959 interview with 60 Minutes Personality Mike Wallace.
"If you want to preserve your power indefinitely, you have to get the consent of the ruled, and this they will do partly by drugs - that I foresaw in Brave New World - partly by these new techniques of propaganda - they will do it (not by force) by bypassing the rational side of man, by appealing to his subconscious and deeper emotions, and even his physiology. And so (by) making him actually love his slavery. This is the danger, that in some ways people may be actually happy under the new regime. But they will be happy in a situation where they oughtn't to be happy [10:51]."
Wallace asks, "[11:50] We believe we live in a Democracy here in the United States. Do you believe that this Brave New World that you talk about could - let's say in the quarter century or in the next century - could come here to our shores?"
Without hesitation, Huxley says yes, it could: "[12:00] I think it could. That's why I feel it’s so EXTREMELY important here and now to start thinking about these problems, not to let ourselves be taken by surprise by these new advances in technology. For example with regard to the use of the drugs...to foresee the kind of uses, and attempt to forestall this. In the same way, with these other methods of propaganda, we can foresee and we can do a good deal to forestall."
Huxley reminds us, "[12:50] The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."
Aldous Huxley explains that the real danger is propaganda, "And this is rather alarming; we are being persuaded below the level of choice and reason [15:25] ."
"[16:00] Democracy depends on the voter making an intelligent and rational choice for what he regards is an enlightened self-interest...but what the dictatorial propagandists are doing is to try to bypass the rational side of men, and to appeal directly to these unconscious forces below the surface so that you are in a way making nonsense of the whole democratic procedure which is based on conscious choice or on rational ground."
Huxley describes how the easiest targets of such propaganda are the children.
"[17:08] The children are quite clearly much more suggestible than the average grown-up, and again suppose that all of this propaganda was in the hands of one or very few agencies, you would have an extraordinarily powerful force playing on these children who are going to grow up and be adults quite soon."
Just as the children become the most loyal brand buyers in response to advertisements, they become the most loyal ideology buyers when it comes to indoctrination - as in our schools. Extreme left-wing or Marxist agendas like Critical Race Theory are standard in elementary schools and now extend to universities like Harvard and Yale. General McInerney has recently warned they exist at the service academies like West Point and Annapolis.
Aldous Huxley warned us in 1959 as he explained to Mike Wallace, "[17:52] You can read in the trade journals the most political accounts of how necessary it is to get hold of the children because then they will be loyal brand buyers later on, but I mean again, you just translate this into political terms, the dictator says they will be loyal ideology buyers when they're grown-up."
Huxley answered that our defense lies in education and critical thinking. We must inform and educate people that the group is not more important than the individual and that freedom and Liberty stand for protecting the rights of each of us.
"[12:43] Every human being is unique and it is on the genetic basis that the whole idea of the value of freedom is based (on this) and I think its extremely important for us to stress this in all our educational life - and I would also say it very important to teach people to be on their guard against the sort of verbal booby traps into which they're always being led - to analyze the kind of things that are being said to them."
Huxley further explains that decentralizing power is another answer. He cites Thomas Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence.
Wallace plays devil's advocate and asks Huxley if freedom is necessary [24:00]. The answer is that it is essential for productivity.
"[24:15] Yes, I should say it is necessary for a genuinely productive society. I mean, I think you could produce plenty of goods without much freedom, but I think the whole sort of creative life of man is ultimately impossible without a considerable measure of individual freedom, initiative, creation, and all these things that we value and all these things that we value properly are impossible without a large measure of freedom."
Wallace challenges Huxley and points out that the Soviet Union of 1959 seemed to defy his statement that they seemed to produce good science and art. However, Huxley explained that the Soviets had given their best and brightest more freedom to spark that creativity and production, while the overwhelming majority of their people subsisted with little.
"[25:24] The scientists who are doing the creative work are given far more freedom than anybody else - I mean it’s a privileged aristocratic society in which provided they don't poke their noses into political affairs, these people are given a great deal of prestige, a considerable amount of freedom, and alot of money. I think what we're going to see is a people as a whole with very little freedom but with an oligarchy on top enjoying a considerable measure of freedom and a very high standard of living - and the Epsilon's down below - drawing very little."
Huxley concluded the interview with his statement that we should strive to retain Democracy as it provides freedom and creativity among the elite scientists and offers it to the ordinary citizen.
Aldous Huxley projected his Brave New World to be 600 years in the future when the book debuted in 1932; however, we are quickly arriving there in less than 100. "By 2030, you will own nothing and be happy."
Huxley feels that drugs will make this feasible because with certain medications or injections - changing a person's state of mind becomes possible, and the human (or transhuman) may be drugged into not only surrendering but enjoying being subjugated.
Huxley sheds more light on this point, "[8:45] This is a very interesting subject. In this book of mine, Brave New World, I postulated a substance called soma which was a very versatile drug. It would make people feel happy in small doses, it would make them see visions in medium doses and it would send them to sleep in large doses. Well, I don't think such a drug exists now, nor do I think it will ever exist but we do have drugs which will do some of these things. And I think it's quite in the cards we may have drugs which will profoundly change our mental states without doing us any harm and this is the pharmacological revolution which has taken place that we now have powerful mind-changing drugs."
Huxley contrasts his book, Brave New World, with one written by his former student George Orwell (aka Eric Arthur Blair); that book is Nineteen Eighty-Four. Orwell's book differs in that it describes control by keeping citizens in a constant state of terror and war. Such heavy-handed control is not what Huxley envisions in our coming totalitarianism.
Huxley explains that the new totalitarian regime will not rule by force or terror but instead will control using psychological-driven propaganda and drugs to trick the citizens into giving up their freedom while happily distracting themselves with drugs and technology. Think CNN, NBC, Facebook, Twitter, Cell Phone Tweets, and Cannabis.
"[11:14] They will do it by bypassing the rational side of man and appealing to his subconscious and deeper emotions and his physiology even. And so (by) making him actually love his slavery. This is the danger, that in some ways people may be actually happy under the new regime. But they will be happy in a situation where they oughtn't to be happy [10:51]."
After the interview, a young Mike Wallace posed a disturbing question. It involved the recognition that Huxley had correctly predicted a totalitarian Soviet government. Still, the burning question was whether Huxley would be correct that the United States would also fall to a World totalitarian government.
"Aldous Huxley finds himself these days in a peculiar and disturbing position. A quarter of a century after prophesying an authoritarian state in which people were reduced to ciphers, he can point at Soviet Russia and say I told you so. The crucial question now is whether the so-called free world is going to give Mr. Huxley the further dubious satisfaction of saying the same thing about us [27:00]."
What remains astonishing is the accuracy of Huxley's vision written almost 90 years ago that we now see unfolding before our eyes. How could he have known? What was it about the technology in 1959 that alerted him that our own government would ultimately use technology to enslave us?
First, Huxley was considered one of the greatest thinkers of his era. A profound intellectual, he could deduce truths about society that the rest of us would miss with the power of his mind alone. Einstein had a similar capacity for foreseeing that which others were blind. For example, while working as a lowly patent clerk from 1902 through 1909, he used only his mind's power to deduce equations to herald atomic energy and the nuclear age. Einstein predicted the distortion of light by gravitational fields, which was doubted and mocked by many of his leading contemporaries; however, he proved correct when measurements were taken of the 1919 total solar eclipse. Scientists no longer laughed at him as he won the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics.
Now we have those on the left mocking this inexorable movement to Global World Government; of course, many of the millennials seem to remember nothing but the government handouts and see government only as a benevolent parent out to ensure they receive the very best in racial and gender equality, a government committed to inclusiveness and social justice. One that is indeed committed to battling climate change. To all who would think Huxley is incorrect, perhaps they might take another look and consider what he saw in 1959 that alarmed him.
The first observation he made in the Mike Wallace interview was that global overpopulation would be a driver of a totalitarian world government. "[2:27] The first of them (these forces)...in general terms can be called overpopulation, the mounting pressure of population pressing upon existing resources. This, of course, is an extraordinary thing; something is happening which has never happened in the world's history before. Take a simple fact: between the birth of Christ and the landing of the Mayflower, the world's population doubled; it rose from 250 million to probably 500 million people. Today the population is rising at such a rate, that it will double in half a century.”
Wallace asks the natural question for all of us, "[3:12] Well why should overpopulation work to diminish our freedom?"
The master answers matter-of-factly because it was evident to him, "[3:16] Well in a number of ways. The experts in the field, Harrison Brown for example, pointed out that in underdeveloped countries the standard of living is falling - people have less to eat and less per capita than they had 50 years ago. And then the economic positions of these countries become more and more precarious. Obviously, the central government has to take on more and more responsibility for keeping the ship of state on an even keel. And of course, you're likely to get social unrest under such conditions with again an intervention by the central government. One sees here a pattern that seems to be pushing very strongly toward a totalitarian regime. Unfortunately, in all these underdeveloped countries, the only highly organized party is the communist party. It looks likely that they will be the heirs to this rather unfortunate process - they will step into the position of power."
Yes, Aldous Huxley vividly saw totalitarianism coming for America in 1959 when no one else, not even Mike Wallace, had a clue. Similarly, in 1909, Einstein saw E=MC2 as the overriding law in physics as the rest of the world's scientists scrambled to try to get their minds around it. Einstein and Huxley were geniuses, light years ahead of their times, and both were divine gifts to humanity.
It is now our role to heed Huxley's predictions and his advice to forestall this totalitarianism from coming to fruition. First, we need to stop the indoctrination of our youth by putting an end to the policy of compulsory teaching of Critical Race Theory. Parents would be better off home-schooling their families rather than allowing their minds to become appropriated by a Totalitarian State. Second, we need to end the daily bombardment with propaganda on the major news networks. We can do this by refusing to listen or watch and prohibiting this with your entire family, including the children and teens. Third, decentralize, as both Thomas Jefferson and Aldous Huxley advise. Fourth, support and strengthen your city, county, and state governments in supporting fundamental human rights and Liberties such as the First, Second, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments to the US Constitution.
For those who haven't noticed, most of these constitutional rights are being violated daily by our lawless Federal Government. The First Amendment protects free speech - especially speech the government does not like. The Second protects a citizen's right to bear arms - especially when the government would like nothing more than to disarm its citizens. The Fourth prevents unlawful search and seizure - especially against political opponents [4:00 - 6:30].
Finally, the Fifth Amendment states that no person shall be deprived of life, Liberty or property without due process of law - especially small business owners seeking to keep their stores open or landlords seeking to collect rent.
Our Federal Authorities are trampling the US Constitution and its magnificent Bill of Rights as if they were pieces of garbage. More of us need to awaken to vote the culprits out of office this fall. More of us need to listen to Aldous Huxley if we are to retain our precious Liberty. Many more need to insist that, at least locally, our Bill of Rights is enforced. And we all must stand up for this experiment in Democracy which the world called America before it is but a fond and distant memory.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner; nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself; nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed; which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.
In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise reexamined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of common law.
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.