This is what it is for; that is its purpose in life – to create death.
One of Freud’s main contributions was the discovery of the death drive. From the excellent article in Wikipedia:
In classical Freudian psychoanalytic theory, the death drive (“Todestrieb”) is the drive towards death, self-destruction and the return to the inorganic: ‘the hypothesis of a death instinct, the task of which is to lead organic life back into the inanimate state’. It was originally proposed by Sigmund Freud in 1920 in Beyond the Pleasure Principle, where in his first published reference to the term he wrote of the ‘opposition between the ego or death instincts and the sexual or life instincts’. The death drive opposes Eros, the tendency toward survival, propagation, sex, and other creative, life-producing drives. The death drive is sometimes referred to as “Thanatos” in post-Freudian thought, complementing “Eros”, although this term was not used in Freud’s own work, being rather introduced by one of Freud’s followers, Wilhelm Stekel.
We have overlooked this theory, preferring to think about nice things. But people are both good and evil – and always will be. We cannot be re-programmed (as NLP believes) to eliminate our dark side – for the simple reason that we are not computers – which, after all, are simply machines.
In our time, the Organization has come to represent the Death Drive – whose goal is to destroy people – and any human potential. I consider this perfectly obvious – having spent all my working life in them. But most people refuse to see this – and instead take great care to not exist – which eliminates their ability to see anything – which makes them nice people.
On other words, we have returned to being a traditional society, ruled by the rich and the powerful. As before, those who are ruled not only want to be ruled – but identify with their rulers completely. The process by which people become rich and powerful has changed, and they have developed new ways of displaying their power – but other than that, nothing has changed.
A quick historical review is in order here. An integral part of the Renaissance was Humanism – the re-discovery from the Classical World of the potential of of humans, and of their empowerment. This became part of the Reformation (although heavily distorted by religious passions) and then of the Scientific Revolution – and of course, above all, of the Enlightenment.
The Industrial Revolution was a different matter entirely, and resulted in today’s ascendancy of Business (with at capital B) as the power that rules the world – which is returning us to the Middle Ages. The Organization I refer to in the title, is just another word for Business, applied to everything else – the Pentagon, the Media, the Academic Establishment – and even our penal institutions.
The Pentagon deserves a few words of its own. Its objective is clearly to destroy people – which to Americans seemed an innocent enough matter – since the people being destroyed are not themselves. This overlooks the fact that attitudes are important – and the murderous attitude is basically the same whatever its target. The Pentagon was not only murdering Iraqis – but also the morality of Americans – and also, of course, their economy.
I am reading an interesting book now: Small Change: why business won’t save the world. The author, who has worked for philanthropic organizations such as the Ford Foundation, the World Bank, and Oxfam, makes a simple point – Business cannot make a better world. I quote (from page xi):
Can we compete ourselves to a more cooperative future, or consume our way to conserved the planet’s scarce resources, or grow our way out of deep-rooted poverty and oppression, for fight our way to peace?
Businessmen insist in saying “Yes” – and no one can argue with them. We cannot say the obvious: that they are basically anti-human – that they are not the solution, but the problem itself.