December 17, 2017

Corporate Technocratic Ideology: Science and Journalism

Filed under: GMO Corporate State, Mainstream Media, Scientism/Technocracy — Russell Bangs @ 7:50 am


(This is building on an old draft and refers to an old article, but the lesson it teaches remain pressing.) In 2015 Nature surveyed the so-called “science” positions of British political parties. Nature seems so inured to scientism ideology and the false notion that where it comes to public policy such matters as GMOs and nuclear energy are primarily “science” issues, that the publication didn’t even notice that in this case it’s surveying the positions of: Political parties! By definition the positions of political parties are political and nothing but political. The piece opens up with the question, “How would your party ensure that UK science maintains its current position in the world?” Is there a more telling way one could proclaim one’s corporate-oriented, Social Darwinist competition-fetishizing concept of science? This is a good example of how Nature has nothing to do with Popperian falsificationist science but on the contrary adheres to corporate-dictated imperatives and the ideology and propaganda of scientism.
This is part of technocratic ideology, the belief that formally credentialed experts should make all decisions for society while democracy and politics as such should cease to exist. The conjoined goals are to encompass all debate within realm of “science” and technical wonkery, where democracy is to be forbidden to tread; and to define the scope of possible policy action as purely technical, never ecological and socioeconomic, never political. The goal is to constrict even further the already narrowed realm of public political participation. The goal of this line of propaganda, along with many other lines of propaganda and policy, is to eradicate democracy and politics as such in any meaningful form. As this survey demonstrates, in England there’s already little political choice. The situation is even worse in America. In the Extreme Energy Civilization, Politics is Dead.
As I’ve written many times, in the context of socioeconomic deployment GMOs and climate change are not science issues but political and economic issues, at best informed by science. But here science has no special prior rights as against politics, economics, morality, philosophy, religion.
Meanwhile immigration and work visas comprise a science issue as well, according to Nature. That’s a good example of the propaganda creep I was describing. Did you hear that the capital gains tax is a science issue as well? Yes, and the mainstream media assures us that the science says there should be no capital gains tax, so what more can you say about that, you mere layman?
The fact is GMOs are no more of a science issue than immigration, the capital gains tax, or Russia Derangement Syndrome. “But the science says the Russkies are very bad!”
In a rational society where the scientific establishment viewed itself reasonably and society placed science and technological development in a rational political and economic perspective, there would be nothing untoward about this intermingling of politics and science. But currently we have the opposite of a rational, reasonable society. On the contrary we have a Mammon theocracy where corporations exercise rule and are working relentlessly toward full corporate totalitarianism. The STEM establishment is fully committed to this corporate-technocratic onslaught and sees itself as the practical and religious core of the incipient new order. The “singularity” is just a metaphor for belief in this technocratic utopia where corporate power will exercise total domination. The only point in question is whether STEM will remain the flunkey of corporate imperatives, or whether the scientism tail will wag the corporate dog. The cultists believe that eventually they’ll use corporate resources and power for their own theocratic goals, though so far the profit motive has consistently subjugated the religious motive to its own ends. (For a good example, see Lords of the Harvest for the history of genetic engineering at Monsanto, how the GE division went from arrogant disdain for the agrochemical division to abject submission to the pesticide plant project, on account of the need to produce a profitable product. Ironically, the pesticide focus goes more to the heart of the religious project than the high-falutin notions of “product quality” GMOs, and the uncouth pesticide peddlers were more synched in to the needs of technocracy than the original genetic engineering idealists. I’ll be developing that idea in future pieces.)
All this is part of the currently dominant corporate science paradigm which largely dictates the way organized science is ideologically conceived, selected, funded, performed, and publicized. The paradigm is summed up by the formula, “Science is whatever the corporate marketing bureaus say it is.” I and others have exhaustively documented this in the case of the technologies and alleged “science” deployed by corporate agriculture. The same framework is easily identifiable in every other corporate economic sector.
In the same way, today’s mainstream media (and often “alternatives” as well) is dominated by the corporate journalism paradigm. More people are aware of this than of the dominance of corporate science. We see this with the widespread use of the term “corporate media”. The corporate journalism paradigm sums to: “Truth is whatever the big corporations say it is.” Or more prosaically, the job of journalists is to serve as stenographers for power, not to assess the truth value of what governments and corporations say. This is an extreme abdication of any democratic concept of the press. Even journalists who are not directly paid by industry, or who don’t depend on the personal favoritism of elites to gain “access”, tend to believe that whatever government (“our” government or its allies, of course; adversarial governments of course are nothing but liars) and the corporate sectors say is, by definition, the measure of journalistic truth. This is institutionalized by the New York Times standard, where the reporter is supposed to regurgitate any claim by a government or corporate publicist as a journalistic fact, usually without so much as a quote followed by “a spokesman said.”
That’s the ideology of corporate journalism. And then we have de jure corruption, ostensible journalists who double as paid corporate operatives. Here’s just one example of this growing cancer, the by now standard practice of “reporters” who cover corporate agriculture who are paid propagandists of agribusiness.
Which brings us back to the journalism of Nature and the corporate science paradigm. We see how system media is nothing more or less than an extension of the de jure corporate publicity departments. Together the entire complex comprises a de facto Goebbels ministry on behalf of corporate technocracy. It has zero fidelity to truth, scientific or journalistic. On the contrary, its culture of the lie is dictated by practical requirements (if they told the truth, it would be the end of their power) and by technocracy’s totalitarian aspiration to use force to realize all its lies in some millennial future. That’s the key to the psychology of ideological liars: They believe that in the future force will accomplish all, and in their minds the future already exists. Therefore where it comes to their cult of corporate power and total biological eugenics there’s no such thing as a lie, only a latent truth.
There’s the core of the mindset of the corporate science paradigm and the corporate journalism paradigm. That’s what humanity and the Earth are up against, a totalitarian cult. We must organize accordingly.
Propagate the necessary new ideas.

1 Comment

  1. […] push forward such an insane, disproven, short-sighted, destructive project, is the best proof that the scientism/technocracy cult, just as much as the poison corporations, is the enemy of humanity and the Earth. Humanity must […]

    Pingback by The Dicamba Crisis (Part 1) | Volatility — December 19, 2017 @ 3:02 pm

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