When I started the GAG files, I initially intended to write in a chronological order, detailling the slow, unrelenting creep of authoritarianism throughout all of human history. I may still do that at some point, perhaps as a stand-alone book under an obscure pen-name (“Oleksandr Varyazhskii),” perhaps, or some other deliberate red herring), but for now, I think it far better, for a number of reasons, to simply make this particular section of my blog a stream of consciousness, with my increasingly sarcastic rhetoric.
The most famous line regarding the Great Reset, by far, is “you will own nothing, and you will be happy; everything you want will be rented.” Contrary to a common criticism of younger generations, people are not steadily becoming more materialistic, in many ways people are becoming less materialistic, but not in the way you might think. My generation, the dreaded millennials, are every bit as materialistic as previous generations, but most of us value non-tangible material items, rather than tangible ones. If that confuses you, then allow me to explain in terms of my favourite hobby: wargaming. Wargaming is a far older hobby than most people realise, in fact, I would personally argue that chess is the original tabletop wargame, and it is certainly the oldest one that is still regularly played. Chess is very abstract, and quite far removed from actual warfare in terms of how it functions. Wargames have gotten much more realistic, and by extension, much more complex, in the centuries since. In the last decade of the 20th century, wargaming finally became computerised, and while early games were nothing more than digital versions of turn-based tabletop games, computers allowed for the creation of real-time virtual warfare, including my personal favourite gaming genre, real-time strategy, or RTS. Now then, the reason I bring this up is simply because of something odd I found among players of the popular online game World of Tanks. Many players like to own tangible models of their favourite tanks, and I know this because I supply them. This is where the concept of materialism, tangiblity, and ownership overlap, but not completely. The point is that, if most of your material possessions are non-tangible, rather than tangible, you don’t need as much space to store them. If a house is “just a place for your stuff,” as George Carlin once said, then you need a large house in order to store a vast library of books, boxes full of board games, tables with miniature dioramas, and walls decorated with maps and paintings. All of the items I just listed can exist in digital (i.e. non-tangible) format, and if you own purely digital books, games, dioramas, and images, then you don’t need a large house, and probably wouldn’t want one.
The most prized material possessions that a person can own are typically status symbols. Among older generations, that status symbol is a house, a car, or a purse – not kidding, purses are status symbols, mainly because they are much more recognisable than items of jewellery. Among millennials, however, the primary status symbol is not tangible, but digital. The number of FaceBook friends, Twitter followers, or YouTube subscribers, is the main mark of status, and people will go to great lengths to portray a fake lifestyle in order to get what they want from social media, because social media tends to favour idle nonsense and vain talk, for some reason. The actual status symbols, incidentally, aren’t just the numbers, but the little virtual badges that come with them – the “verified” check mark, the gold status, etc. Hive, as much as I like the platform, is the worst when it comes to badges, two of which reward users for posting every single day, thus encouraging quantity over quality. Returning to the subject of electronic games, lots of my age-mates play MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role-playing games), most of which allow a great degree of character customisation, thus any player can create a character that is truly their “own.” The character isn’t the player’s de jure property, of course, and there are very limited options for creating a tangible version of the character. Between levelling up a character and collecting in-game items, people who put a lot of time into their game characters have a lot to show for it, and can become very attached to them as a result, so getting hacked and losing one’s game account can feel like a great loss. No tangible item has been lost, and in most cases, nothing of monetary value was lost, yet it is still a material loss. Digital property is still property, after all, and there is a massive debate still going on about how it should be treated in the legal sense. Nonetheless, I shall reiterate: a digital item is as much a material possession as a tangible item.
Corporations have been undermining the concept of personal property for the entire 21st century, so far. Software companies are the worst, as they have, in almost perfect lockstep, moved away from allowing consumers to “own” copies of their software, and instead switched to subscription services, in which the software is perpetually rented. This is a shady (more like “shitty”) business practise that allows companies to continually siphon money from their customers on a single product, rather than having to regularly introduce new products in order to get repeat customers (though they still do that, too). Since it is such a successful business practise, companies that produce tangible products are looking to do the exact same thing, and some already do. If you have a gas-powered stove, for instance, you might not own the gas tank, and instead have to rent it from the gas company, perpetually paying them for its use, regardless of how much gas you actually use. It isn’t much of a stretch to see how this might work with other tangible items. This, combined with the steadily decreasing quality of physical products, only serves to contribute to our “throw-away” society, which is something that people have been complaining about for decades. The Great Reset is not a reset at all, just the logical conclusion of the current trend – corporations own everything, you rent everything, including your house, from them, you must work for them in order to have the money to access to the things that you want, and if you don’t work for them, you can’t do or have anything. This sounds an awful lot like communism, and it seems to me that the only gripe that communists have with this arrangement is that corporations own everything, rather than the public or the government. In other words, the Great Reset is just more of the “privatise the gains, socialise the losses” trend that critics of private prisons and defense contractors have been pointing out for years now.
So then, if the Great Reset is just more of the same, how did it get its name? The answer is simple: linguistic propaganda. I opened my previous post by refuting several examples of linguistic propaganda, mainly to scare off anyone stupid enough to defend them. You can’t argue with someone who uses linguistic propaganda, because they aren’t just wrong, they are lying. They know that what they are saying is wrong, but they either don’t care, or they can’t help themselves. Klaus Schwab, for instance, can’t help himself. Schwab seems to be so hopelessly in love with socialism (he is German, after all, and socialism is a German invention), but he knows enough about economics to understand precisely why socialism can’t work. The same can be said of Lenin, Mussolini, and Hitler. All of them were socialists who had broad enough understandings of human nature (at least compared to Marx, who didn’t understand people at all), that they tweaked the original doctrine to fit their respective societies. Thus, Communism (i.e. Soviet communism), Fascism, and Nazism can all be said to be variations of “post-Marxist socialism.” “Stakeholder capitalism,” as Schwab deceptively calls his ideal economic system, is another form of post-Marxist socialism, a “second generation” of post-Marxist socialism, if you will, or a “kinder, gentler fascism,” as I would prefer to say, since the Germans are still totalitarian asshats, but no longer seem to have the stomach for mass murder.