EDITORIAL by Kaspar Bonde Eriksen, FO partner (MA International Politics) & Martin Juncher, FO founder (MA Political Science)
The world, communities and Free Observer in change
The year 2020-2021
A year in which we witnessed what appeared like a near-perfect execution of a globally orchestrated and co-ordinated “pandemic exercise”, the past 12 months brought us a dramatic shift in – and introduction to – new dimensions of power, and enactments of government overreach.
This morphed into a not-so-delicate mixture of subtle and more blatant means of local, albeit universally copied, oppression and censorship. To add to its potency, it was accompanied by a fear-laden media-bombardment of one-sided ‘information’ and ‘reporting’; rhetorical devices repeated ad nauseum, combining warning-, pleading- and accusatory calls for a radically misconstrued “social concern and understanding”; at worst, downright silencing critical voices, at best, denouncing them for something akin to heresy and endangering their fellow citizens when falling short of blind conformity.
As if insufficiently radical, yet a further layer of indirect control was applied, by establishing a very singular discourse, which somehow managed to clothe its pretend-empathy in divisiveness – moral condemnation, later legal punishment, for failure to comply; coupled with wildly exaggerated projections of imminent doom, and the necessity of self-flagellating via masking, continuous cleansing, and physical distancing). A truly warped sense of health expressed in decidedly unhealthy practices, and worryingly much else on top.
At times it seemed it was approaching psychological warfare, and people’s mental state and behaviour reacted accordingly, as reflected in the rising depressions, suicides, isolation, tendency to snitching and abusive (social) media trolling.
A year of censorship, lockdowns, myriads of confusing restrictions, physical and mental coercion, violations of laws and constitutional practices, political customs, business and education closure (aka “homeschooling”…).
A year of great challenges to humanity; involving absolutely critical notions concerning freedom, knowledge, history, rights, science, democracy, as well as their practical societal applications. Not to mention the decidedly gloomy outlook for coming generations.
A year where the dehumanisation Statist agenda “from above” contrasts starkly with the true humanism of the sanctity of the local community and individual “from below”.
A year where Big Business and politics uncomfortably became near-indistinguishable and politics moved ever-closer to something approaching medically induced dictatorship.
A year that saw no meaningful opposition, and a shameful absence of any critical press.
A year of demonstrations, demonising, ideological witch hunts, exclusion, separation, attacks, assaults, lost documents, fungible (read: distorted) data, more mysteriously lost documents, and espousals of plain untruths.
A year of continuous asphyxiation of otherwise-thinking collectives, deliberately enforced economic destruction, termination of old affiliations – however, also the bright beginnings of profound new friendships, a sudden realisation and understanding of a spiritual context, and a great awakening to, and appreciation of, our nature and deeper needs.
A year of incipient authoritarianism, which despite its voracious appetite to swallow all genuine diversity (the splendour of free individuals expressing themselves jubilantly) and life colour, we believe will invariably (and unintentionally) lead to upending the decaying structures, which it desperately clings to uphold, and give birth new aspirations towards – and a newfound appreciation of – liberty. Consequently, it will inadvertently encourage aligned community building, awakening people to their personal and greater humanistic truths over a mere ‘obeying citizenship’. What we will see born from these ashen, desert plains, is no less than a new Enlightenment, and eventually extraordinary creativity and advancement, based on the love for life and each other. Indeed, no less.
How to match the complexity of power analysis?
We try, with humility yet also some conviction, to address the complexity of our time with some Big Picture thinking, which according to the German systems theorist and sociologist, Niklas Luhmann, is the only way we can simplify and balance the internal with the external – both as a person, organization and society.
For a contemporary analysis of power to be possible, several cohesive layers must be observed from different perspectives, which, inter alia, involve the various international organizations and capital interests that affect the political agenda, but more importantly the eternal moral Archimedean standpoint: personal freedom.
We believe that the change we are experiencing, simultaneously across the world – first introduced urgently by circumventing the usual inconvenient political and legal processes and now cemented by a collective ‘spell’ – lacks integrity, and with crisis-driven haste removes us from what we, at least, understand by democracy and freedom.
In particular, we suddenly find almost every fundamental area of our private and social lives encroached upon, as well as subject to a disturbing new centripetal political culture and oligarchic economic tendency.
Even though the world was already on the verge of a major upheaval, due to rampant social-economic and environmental distortions that required change; the current political direction is assuredly not the kind we want to see. Nor one which has any hope of improving anyone’s lives (other than the already-haves). In fact, it could not be further away from our own human-led orientation.
It is both frightening and heartbreaking to experience the speed and effect of an increasing development towards a kind of society we thought we had confined to history. Yet, here it is rearing its ugly head in its newfound disguise, but with its foreboding expression.
This is absolutely contrary to our mission, which is founded on a greater and stronger degree of openness, enfranchisement and voluntary participation.
One thing is, as we have seen throughout history, that a power-hungry ideological fanatic attempts to assume absolute control, but what made our alarm systems ring ever louder still, was the apparent unanimity and equanimity among all political leaders, media and larger capital interests, whose billion-dollar gains grow, and become more and more obvious, by the day – at the expense of your freedom and your ability to build a life of self-sufficiency.
Most of the politicians and mainstream media know deep within themselves that what they explicit, or indirectly, support is wrong, but their craving for power and influence, and/or fear of personal (career) loss, overwhelm their courage to stand up.
What happened in Denmark?
In Denmark, it has manifested itself in an unprecedented assumption of power by the government, expressed in an extreme centralisation of all decisions, which runs diametrically counter to our long-established and much-cherished culture and history of consensus-building, expert and juridical oversight, a professional and independent civil service, and a high degree of transparency.
Not only have these long-established principles been dismantled with shocking speed, but despite the singular hierarchisation, decisions with far-reaching consequences are suddenly no longer accompanied by any degree of responsibility. Even in the ever-frequent cases, where the government’s professional and administrative incompetence inflict lasting harm to entire communities, with severe impacts on people’s economic, social, psychological and health to follow, is there a sign of consequential removal. A mere mea culpa, and off they head in pursuit of further damage.
This is happening with both passive and active acceptance from both sides of the party spectrum, the country’s Blue and Red parliamentarians have singularly failed in their role as opposition and critical voices that dare to raise their voices and challenge the narrative. In recent years they have rather facilitated the tendentious intellectual decay that subscribes to a binary discourse, which conveniently and simplistically reduces critics to conspirators. We do well to remember Socrates’s warning that “when the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser.”
Whilst the 4th Pillar of Democracy should seek objectively present “the better rational counter-argument”, which another great German sociologist, Jürgen Habermas, advocated; ironically, what we find instead is that radical political circumscription is imposed without any real evidence, and all under the false pretence that “they do it for own good, they only want to take care of us”. To accept and do as we are told, to sacrifice ourselves for “the greater Community”.
It is a distortion of dimensions, which we are fed daily in connection with the cultivation of collective anxiety and fear. Meanwhile, back in reality, it means that the vulnerable are not diagnosed in time, the actually sick unable to attend doctor and hospital appointments due to Covid reserved priorities and the subsequent empty-kept beds, neglect and failure to treat more serious diseases, compulsive tests whose inaccuracy keep people isolated and health workers needlessly away from their work, and much, much more.
Why is the media so silent on these matters? To the responsible: Is it because you do not dare to challenge the powers above and their narrative? What are you afraid of? This is the reason we fund you with our tax – you should serve us! Where can we today find the democratically crucial “opposite view”?
Unnatural communities break down – new communities of aligned values emerge
People are divided into individual danger-carriers of infection, split into opposing groups of “good” (blind obeying) and “dangerous” (show me the evidence), wrapped in alienating masks and lab-like visors, told – sorry, “recommended” – to exercise quasi-permanent self-isolation, with outcomes that break down families, friendships, associations, shut down businesses and schooling. The true, natural communities are broken up or forcefully closed, and every person is indirectly ‘scolded’ as a carrier and thus pathogenic. The ordinary person is castigated as sinful, and thus burdened with guilt, we begin to see our fellow men and women pronouncing accusatory denouncements, of those who do not pay homage to the doctrine of wearing the “requested” clothing, and practice the necessary self-flagellation.
For a deeper understanding of these mechanisms of power and repression, the French historian, sociologist and political activist, Michel Foucault’s theory of discipline strikes astonishingly true. Whilst ‘power’ in this instance very much is exercised by certain actors as an instrument of coercion and embodied in discreet structures, Foucault’s concept of ‘power/knowledge’ as inseparable, rightly signifies that power is also constituted through accepted forms of knowledge, scientific understanding and ‘truth’. To disguise the former, those very powers have to monopolise the communication of the latter, by creating a veil of deception of fake “scientific truth” (mixed with a heavy dose of moral language to close down the eventual blatant contrary evidence).
At the same time, something just as incredible is happening… though a rather more beautiful and uplifting thing: We are correspondingly experiencing a pervasive, natural self-driven historical awakening among people all over the world; a deep longing for honesty and human values, lived out naturally.
In addition to the original urge of having to “do something”, when the madness broke out in March 2020; to give “another voice” room to speak, and contribute with a critical view, we launched Free Observer. Our original source of inspiration has been to bring “the outcasts” together, and the ever-growing mutually supportive community was, and remains our daily motivation. It’s this sense of need and belongingness that encourage us in what we see as a global humanistic enlightenment project.
Where in previous settings we’d see colleagues, we now see friends and partners; where others see challenging competitors, we see collaborators and co-creators. We see people, not machines. We also see an extraordinary degree of solidarity and cohesion of like-minded people, and it has emerged completely spontaneously and with such a strong focus. Experiencing this has meant that we have never before been so committed to keep going.
We are incarnate critical optimists
Although we have always been inherently positive, and always believed in progress, we now find ourselves wounded by the cynicism that drives one side of the two divergent tracks of the current human and societal developments.
When the Danish Prime Minister, after keeping the population in uncertainty through a year of complete irrational, covert and incoherent panic policy, chooses to travel to Israel to help implement effective vaccine apartheid and volunteers to be a production and test country for a comprehensive medical and social experiment, our sense of distrust reaches new heights.
But we continue the uninterrupted work of education and trying to disseminate a deeper understanding. And we know with deep-seated certainty that we are on the right track when opponents do not even want to discuss the subject, or outrightly dismiss your questions and challenges with addressing the charges. Kindergarten argumentation.
The unspoken becomes plan in the rearview
The Epidemic Law, which incomprehensibly was passed by the Danish Parliament, and went largely unchallenged by an unforgivably uncritical press. When three of the four main institutional powers so radically deprive us of our freedom and dignity, someone has to step up in defence of basic rights.
Such enactments deprive us of the choice and decision over our own life and abdicate the authority over our children. It atomizes human interaction, rips apart the nucleus bind and dependency of family, and thus splits the “organic cohesion” of society.
All to be replaced in favour of some digitised surveillance and ‘selection’ by artificial intelligence, DNA-altering vaccines that will biologically remove the human, because everyone will become…what? Do we even know the after-effects? What ‘something else’ are we risking our long term health for, in order to be ‘graciously permitted’ a promised return to a semblance of basic life of ‘before’? Just like gene-modified, or otherwise manipulated foods. Can one therefore also “patent” and own human DNA? That will for sure end the debate over free will and a life based on spirituality.
Where is the limit, where do we draw the line, of trust in the “authorities”? At what point have they breached the fine, but the inviolable line of what is ‘me’ and ‘mine’? How far do we accept intrusions and encroachments to reach?
Everything is seemingly at some point attributed to (excused by) “climate policy”. Things are classified as definitively true and right without being thought through thoroughly, and without reference to independent science. In particular, the consequences of blindly abolishing an agenda and launching a new one; as a revolution based on uncritical dogma, undoubtedly heralds problems ahead. We have seen these singular doctrinaire upheavals before – and they never lead to something good, nor do they end happily…
The new plan is rolled out with great urgency, presented as if inevitable, eschatological. The speed suggests it’s frantic, or should that be fanatic? The new epidemic law gets bulldozed through. Steamrolling all previous legislation and legislative and democratic principles, which were rooted in common sense, constitutional and human rights. In their reassuring place, we now see one freedom after another eroded and discarded on the funeral pyre of an ever-infringing state.
Remarkably, almost paradoxically, we experience a remarkable parallel collective “self-empowerment” movement, which appears to be gaining self-awareness and growing stronger and stronger by the day. The more obvious the deception become for yet more and more people, the stronger the desire for freedom and the need for fellowship with other like-minded people grows.
We have experienced verbal (protesters even physical) attacks and assaults without evidence or justification. It’s as if there’s a fog that not only envelops and dims people’s capacity to orient themselves but lures us in the direction into something very dark; one, which will leave our grandchildren speechless and to uncomprehendingly ask: How could they let it happen…? How could they fail to see where it was going? Had history taught them nothing?
The new epidemic law equates influenza and Covid-19 with dangerous epidemics, “A-List Diseases”, such as Ebola and the Plague. There is no evidence for anything remotely so drastic, but what’s worse, that wildly distorted reclassification is used to justify the unnecessary, unacceptable and, frankly, violent interference with our personal and social freedoms.
From local to global “tribe”
It is now a year ago that we were quite a few who began to illuminate the corona exaggeration (deception…?) with facts, statistics, and judging it according to the measures of unintended effects (short and long term) as well as proportionality.
No matter how many objective and responsible perspectives we presented and reported; no matter how senior, expert and reputable the people voicing the concerns, the official narrative and media coverage remained singularly adamant that we were dealing with a desperately dangerous virus and all measures taken to stem were to be not only accepted but even celebrated.
The alternative view was invariably described as ‘conspiratorial’, false and downright dangerous. We do not believe that it was or is. Most people can now see it for themselves, and so many – even much of the media – are recognising the truths we attempted to alert them to. Is it too late?
We will see, but we guarantee our followers this: Our commitment to keeping ‘fighting’ and voicing the alternative view will not cease. Eventually, we believe, even those who by instinct always want to believe the best about ‘the system’, and particularly cling to maintain faith in those who manage it, will draw a line of ‘hereto-and-no-further’. To do so is not controversial, but a human duty.
The draconian, near-dictatorial measures (harsh terms, but they resemble more that of a banana republic than a mature, proud democracy), taken on no supportive factual evidence, and based on (purposefully…?) catastrophically exaggerated warnings, have now simply become commonplace. Professionals in different sectors are in various ways being undermined and pressured, and our knowledge of both treatment and infection of the virus itself shows that the interventions are completely out of proportion to the reality of the health threat it poses.
Perhaps even more disconcerting is the fact that this new regime was introduced by a traditionally national standard-bearer of people’s rights, namely the Social Democratic Party. Historically, a great balancing force between the economic illiteracy and endangered liberty of the far Left, and the class-divisive and wealth concentrating Right, in its market and corporate monopoly version. Suddenly, this minority governing cabinet of ‘nobodies’, turned into a degree of power-concentration and dominance never previously seen in Denmark (and the same pattern took place in almost every other country).
Yet more worrying, was the fact that the extreme politicisation and control at first happened with the full support of both the Red and the Blue fractions. This has left its mark on popular consciousness. Such blind allegiance and submission to an otherwise almost entirely inept and incompetent authority, has stood as a non-penetrable wall against all rationality and common sense but is now cracking. Many of those same parties are now speaking up about their concern of overreach and mishandling. Too late, however; we believe their passivity, vapid opposition, or cowardly compliance has meant the system is on its last legs. We sense something new, more ably representative, more circumscribed and limited, will emerge out of the rubble of a failed structure/paradigm.
We see it most notably, however, among people, we meet on the street, among our growing community and their comments, more generally on social media, and in more and more of the newspapers.
We see it most visibly and loudly in the commitment and inquiries we receive from people, who have both had enough of the theatre, but interestingly also provide each other with incredible support and encouragement, despite the gloomy situation. It is both eye-catching and beautiful. Mette and Magnus’s reign is hopefully soon over. Just as the current need for opposition should be evident to even the most authoritarian inclined. At first, a few listened and began to research. Most, however, did nothing. Many even went fully indoctrinated with the narrative, in the vain hope that for some reason the state is somehow today miraculously free from history’s proof of its tendency towards corruption, and only wants to do good for them. Hence, they slightly warily persuaded themselves, one can safely surrender in uncritical assurance and comfort about its honest intentions. Ah, how naïve we can sometimes be.
Right and Wrong turned upside down without negotiation
We believe, like many, that it should and will end in a legal settlement of dimensions. Whether the whole deeply strange and insecure process is carried out consciously or not, both our political culture, economic basis, and human foundation are being wound up – and we have not had any voice as to whether this is what we want. And all that must have consequences.
Then our (so-called) democracy and constitution must undergo a thorough revision and upgrade (to stay in terms of the all-encompassing technology), so that it is man – and not capital nor algorithms – that is at the centre of value attribution. Denmark has now apparently become a pioneering country and test country for an artificial medical governance doctrine.
A small, stable, transparent, prosperous and homogeneous country with a high degree of trust and confidence in the social and governing institutions, a well-functioning and transparent decision-making culture, based on co-operation and consensus, and a respected, competent professional bureaucracy, is the perfect placid candidate for deceitfully rolling out a new ambitious experiment, without much critical challenge.
Are we embarking on the largest dehumanization project in history? Should we be the benchmark for the other countries as global companies roll out new product strategies? Here, in the form of a special economic-political variant of medical dictatorship.
All the beauty of man. Our spirituality, presence, artistic expression and creativity, seem to be dulled. Everything is digitized. It is in complete opposition to the human spirit and an attack on our innermost being. It is the human in us that is threatened, and which we must therefore become aware of and (again) learn to cherish, to celebrate.
We create new categories for what is right and wrong, but without digging deeper into the validity. Everything is divided into sharply edged opposites. This is dangerous. Such is neither life, people, meaning, nor science. Complex systems, values and needs are not simple, nor categorical. They are dynamic and mutually influential. The development to erase all that is natural, including history as it is handed down and understood, is an attempt to betray our foundations on which we rely to receive grounding.
We must reverse this course while we still can so that we uphold our truths.
New civilisational birth?
We are in a new age of Enlightenment, a new civilizational birth, which this time is global, due to the digital dimension we and our children have brought into our lives. It is the gateway to control, occupation and stealing our spirituality and humanity, but it can also be used to bring us together and spread knowledge if used properly.
Such is the binary nature of things, and our obligation to use them with corollary consideration and care. People before us have fought for their families and for their freedom. The claim today is that we have become too comfortable and that most of us have probably forgotten what really matters; how to fight for something with everything you are and have. Perhaps this is the wake-up call we all needed to realise what is essential.
To look into the deepest corners of our soul, and ask ourselves what we want to be involved in, and what we are not going to engage in. That’s what we need now. Otherwise, the right and the opportunity to be self-determined, and that precious free will, our ancestry has fought so valiantly for, will go down in history as a mere temporary interregnum.
It is about our sovereignty. We can only encourage you to see clearly, judge with scepticism yet grace, and take your precautions. Besides this, find a role in life, where you can contribute constructively to making the world a place, as good for the Other as for Yourself.
The group of people who stand to benefit (always financially and career-wise) from the new discourse of power may largely be morally lost, but there will undoubtedly be some, who still hear a faint Siren call somewhere in the depths of their hearts and spirit; a last remaining space no one has yet penetrated. Maybe, just maybe, we can help stir that voice with a harmonious message they recognize as true. In any case, it has been a fantastic journey of destiny, and at times – in fact, almost daily – has been inspiring and uplifting, in between the madness of the new ‘Health Regime’. It has truly touched our hearts to witness the strong and flourishing, mutually supportive, environment, made up of self-motivated individuals coming together out of their own initiative, their own volition. Not patronised or imposed by any force “from above”. These are the communities of the future.
We believe that we each have a mission with our life, to realize our very special selves and that this can only happen by “choosing” and “celebrating” our common humanity, which lies in our uniqueness. Although it sounds contradictory, it is precisely in our diversity that we are so uniquely similar.
Our community is motivated by freedom and celebrating the eclectic, not the soul-quenching blandness of uniformity. Something the prevailing political discourse has set out to dictate: that we have no natural binds, except simple, basic biology and common citizenship. Well, we know better about the miracle that is mutual respect, recognition, acknowledgement, beauty and free participation. And we know where they can stick to that anti-human belief of theirs.
If the humanistic ideal is your guiding star, then you immediately recognize your tribe. We like to think we are part of that all-powerful, enduring tribe of fellowship, grounded in the devotional love of natural and free life.