They celebrated it’s potential. They cheered it’s architectural structure and open source inclusivity. They said information would be liberated and a new era of enlightenment was upon us if we could just get the world connected. The quicker the better. The promise of the Internet to corral all of humankind into a portal of limitless possibilities died a long time ago and we are now reaping the multitude of consequences resulting from its hijacking by greedy, malicious, powerful forces - a combination of corporate and state colluders.
At the core of this information hijacking is the ultimate technocratic weapon in Google Search, an abstract tool with intentionally obscure engineering, where billions of people are deliberately herded daily for reinforced manipulation and control. It is such a powerful tool of deception on a global scale, nothing has ever come close to the level of damage it can wield against humanity in the wrong hands, rendering entire populations walking, swiping “truth machines” and “reality affirmers” in its service.
A few months ago somewhere deep in an episode of the Joe Rogan Podcast, Jaimie, the host’s trusted assistant and idiot savant of hyper mouse clicking for all corporate-state approved information began one of his pointless digital hunts through the mind numbing inverse panopticon of official sources provided by Google search. For years it’s been his go-to wellspring for informing Rogan’s viewers about those stubborn little ‘facts’ that Joe prides himself on providing for them. The assumption being that if everything is “fact checked” through Google on the screen for the audience, the conversation is approved to continue on toward the path of truth and enlightenment and Joe can insulate himself from his critics, most of whom are not interested in facts at all and would eagerly smear him for any reasons, real or fabricated, and all of them political.
In that episode of a few months ago, for the first time Joe conveyed the futility of Jamie’s actions many of us have felt for years, “Would you get off Google and use duckduckgo please?” he impatiently asked. In an instant 20 million impressionable minds were planted with a necessary seed of doubt about Google and how we've been conditioned to pursue information online, the collective false assumption being that it's an efficient digital path toward facts and maybe even truth.
It’s vital that we all care again about both, but doing so requires we destroy our presuppositions about this heralded tool used to manipulate and deceive the world for years. The search for anything important in our quest for truth requires a dedicated effort of out-smarting those would seek to inhibit this noble aim.
At a pub gathering of graduate students some years ago for a Friday night “social” the topic came up of sources and citations, which was a first clue if ever you needed one that there was going to be no party there that night. The conversation meandered between various databases used by social scientists before it arrived at Google scholar and Google search. I remained silent until one person chimed in about contemporary events that haven’t been sufficiently researched. They all agreed Google search’s Artificial Intelligence and superior up-to-the-nanosecond link-scanning network-crawler capacities were the only option for the astute scholar now days.
“You will not find the truth using Google,” I finally spoke. The incredulous looks I got made me realize academia might not be for me after all. Silence hung over the table with an expectation that I continue. “It is designed to keep you as far away from the truth as possible.”
Now, as a postgrad at the time I was still naïve about the world of academia, and it never occurred to me that they weren’t interested in the truth. The average academic is concerned with publication points that can be awarded through submitting articles to various Journals that are edited by ideologues who have a very clear agenda and decide what gets approved for peer-review and what gets completely ignored. The more points a “scholar” earns, the quicker they might be eligible for full professorships and tenure track promotions. But I continued under the assumption they did care about truth.
“The same goes for Wikipedia and all other official sources. A handful of corporations control all the information in the world, at least they try to and that includes Google. They want you misinformed and ignorant so they can control you, distract you and deceive you into believing their version of history, their contrived narratives about current events and by extension the future. You know, ‘who controls the past controls the future’.”
Myself excluded, they were all specially chosen researchers from a pool of scholarship applicants across all EU nations. The promising future scholars of social science research on the old continent.
“Orwell?” I asked.
Liberty is not a very popular concept among European youths west of the Elbe and southwest of the Danube. They were not reared with Polish or Czech grandmothers to constantly remind them of a dank miserable life in its absence. There has always been bread on their tables and never someone accompanying that bread to tell them what life is like with no bread on the table. They were not taught in German, French or Italian schools the reasons why they should value liberty in life above all else, particularly the feelings of strangers or the dictates of bureaucrats. And now that they are on the brink of losing whatever crumbs of it they may have enjoyed with permission from their rulers in Brussels, it may be too late. Polish and Hungarian youth will simply say, “we told you so” and be called upon to liberate the careless half of the continent when things get much darker than they already appear to be. Will they do it, or will they build a wall to keep the millions of enslaved Germans and French from rushing east toward freedom? We cannot blame them if they choose the wall.
In that group of promising young social science researchers I was often (under their breaths when they assumed I couldn’t hear) referred to as “the American who is concerned with liberty.”
Think about that as you watch Police stroll the Boulevards Saint Germain or Montparnasse where the French youth of today eagerly prepare their digital offerings for inspection, QR code evidence of their complete surrender to hysterical madness that has subsumed the west, and total submission to medical police state tyranny that grants them permission to dine in public as a reward for donating their arms to global eugenics. Say what you will about the student protests of 1968, from Prague to Paris to Mexico City, at least they had passion, and grit, and were willing to sacrifice some skin against authority of the time, for a future they wanted to have an active part in making.
The youth of today are a product of 20 years of mistaking Google searches for truth, and truth for knowledge and knowledge for wisdom. They are the results of experimental progressive positivity parenting that put safety first, especially if that safety required trust and obedience to authority and was exclusively granted by “experts” who worked for both corporations and the government. How easy it is with a global centralized truth machine to engineer the ignorance and inactions of people, and get them to believe they arrived at their compliance and obedience all on their own.
Those who point to Google’s abhorrent hand in censoring the truth from the Chinese people on behalf of the CCP, are incapable of understanding that same hand has done the same for the powers that control the society where they live. Information prisons in Chinese characters may look different than those in English, but they function exactly the same. The only difference between the physically incarcerated Foucauldian panopticon subjects and the socially engineered is the incarcerated can see the bars, while the socially engineered are made to love their bars by mistaking them for something else.
Are you a Good Citizen? How Good?
Social Engineering for Social Justice
In a recent speech to Princeton University subjects, formerly known as scholars or students, Abigail Schrier briefly mentioned Google search manipulation. Her speech has gone viral on various corners of substack.
Your will is being toyed with, subverted, manipulated. And in a fairly insidious manner. None of you will be shocked to hear that Google promotes certain search results in order to lead us to a certain perspective.
It’s not exactly a hard hitting retrospective of just how insidious this propaganda machine is, but like Joe Rogan it’s nice to see another public figure with a prominent platform plant that seed of doubt so that whenever people use google, they’re aware about its insidious games of deception.
I recall observing one such game with two Ukrainian graduate students several years ago. These were disciplined and thoughtful young men who had come to Poland seeking a better life for their families back home. They held an encyclopedic knowledge of European history and American history and given their own nation’s history they had justifiable suspicions of Marxism and contempt for its culturally subversive parlor tricks. One night I told them to take out their phones, navigate google to select English as the default language and do a google search for ‘American Inventors’. They had no idea what I was up to and I waited patiently taking sips from a pint of lager with giddy anticipation.
This was two years after the engineered racial moral panic on the false narrative cooked up by divisive forces in the wake of the Michael Brown shooting and ensuing riots AND two years before the same cooked up events of the racial moral panic of George Floyd and the ensuing anarcho-tyranny endorsed by wicked elites, who from behind their iron gates and private security would never suffer the consequences of ambivalent prosecutors or city councils defunding law enforcement.
The dedicated Ukrainians completed their task and arrived at the first page of results. They gently pulled their screens down with the tip of their index fingers. Their jaws dropped before they burst out laughing hysterically. Google had engineered nearly all its search results to show only black inventors when searching ‘American Inventors’, dropping a few token white inventors near the end with Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell and Ben Franklin. The other thirty or so were all black and until google decided to rewrite history to appease social justice initiatives desired by Marxists whose goal is to always rewrite history to enhance their power, many of these black inventors were hardly known for inventing anything revolutionary at all. Google did the same with Mathematicians and who knows what other categories.
Since then the racial moral panics have accelerated with corporations proud to take a leading role in funding the bail bonds of looters, rioters and violent criminals who are released from prison and go on to commit more violent crimes thanks to the fiscal generosity of Apple computers or Nike Inc. and their Black Lives Matter allies. The final merging of woke capital, neo-Marxist activism and the Google Archipelago is now complete. The signs of it are everywhere, both on and offline. Those who have watched television commercials the past 18 months in the U.S. are incessantly reminded of this merger. Apparently all non POC (People of Color - the latest white liberal politically correct pet word for shade-charting the melanin attributes of their fellow humans) actors quit the commercial acting business in unison. The truth is more insidious, as there are no other races useful for woke corporations to signal how wonderfully anti-racist and virtuous they are, the subtle ironic implication being they were completely racist before by not casting all black actors, and now can atone for their historical sins by not casting any other skin color until their absolution is complete. Since racial moral panics are engineered to politically benefit woke capital’s allies who are in power everywhere, white actors would be wise to stick to the theatre or find other employment.
This intentional obsession with race is disturbing to the outsider who infrequently visits the Divided States. If one were intent on completely destroying a multiracial nation from within, an unhealthy preoccupation with race would be an incredibly efficient place to start. The social engineers at Google and all woke corporations and their elite controllers know this. Their insistence that all institutions public or private worship at their engineered alter of diversity, equity and inclusion will ensure it never ends.
Media Literacy and The Cyberflâneur
French poet Charles Baudelaire characterized the Flâneur as an aesthete and dandy, who wandered the arcades of nineteenth-century Paris looking at and listening to the kaleidoscopic manifestations of life in a modern city.
A half century later this would be the topic of a grand philosophical exploration for Walther Benjamin and his Arcades Project. The Flâneur for Benjamin was the modernist archetype of urban exploration in post-industrial Paris. The wanderer, the seeker who did not know what he was looking for and whose journey was led only by whatever stimulation he encountered next. There was no destination in mind or mapped out path as the Flâneur meandered the arcades of Paris. He had only the directions available based on the design of the city’s arcades, but was not interested in the direction so much as the experience of sauntering, (Flâneur roughly translates to saunter, of the old French ‘sans terre’ or landless). This strolling expedition, and all the sensory experiences one could absorb along the way was an end in itself. The idea of strolling a city today with no destination in mind and not for exercise of walking a pet dog may seem absurd to most, but the endless stimuli of urban life at the time was as much a fascinating destination replete with spontaneity and feast of extravagances of the senses as any digital ‘virtual reality’ experience may be for those seeking a virtually prepared and manufactured experience from technological substitutions of our virtually simulated and manufactured times.
In 2013, Evgeny Morozov published an op-ed in the New York Times on the death of the Cyberflâneur. The rise of Google and Facebook according to Morozov meant the death of the individual who went to that ethereal abstraction, that place “online” whose journey was signaled with the dialed-up beeps and crackles of something happening to initiate an action of transplantation. The digital seeker did so without knowing what he was looking for, without aim, and only to curiously wander about like Benjamin’s late 19th century Flâneur of the Parisian arcades. For Morozov the Cyberflâneurs prize was simple: "solitude and individuality, anonymity and opacity, mystery and ambivalence, curiosity and risk-taking."
This was the technological equivalent of serendipity or happenstance, before a half dozen monopolies were able to coral herds of billions into their curated, uniform, restrictive and intentionally deceitful mind numbing platforms. "Transcending its original playful identity, [the Internet]'s no longer a place for strolling -- it's a place for getting things done," Morozov wrote. "Hardly anyone 'surfs' the Web anymore."
With Google’s ability to digitally ‘mind meld’ billions of people daily toward revisionist history and fabricated narratives, the only means of staying ahead of their deceptions requires we all become dedicated Cyberflânuers again. Google search has its benefits if you’re seeking the birth date of a famous person, or a date in history when something occurred or even directions somewhere provided you can afford to pay the cost of the service in the form of incessant invasive surveillance and data collection. For accurate political or scientific information however we must all become actively media literate and undertake the journey beyond a single click of Google’s search button.
Searching Google for “covid treatments” or “Pfizer vaccine safety” will result in only Corporate-State approved results, people who would rather you believe that no treatments exist at all except for “vaccines”. While using duckduckgo or brave search for the same task can reap a panoply of results that Google wouldn’t dare show in its first ten pages of results. That is to say, one is more inclined to find the truth on important matters of our day by completely avoiding Google, (and Facebook or any controlling platform) and becoming a Cyberflâneur who meanders through the lesser visited websites that are not partnering with western government propaganda agencies and aren’t wholly owned subsidiaries of Viacom, Disney, Time Warner, Comcast or NewsCorp. Those who seek to socially engineer a particular reality for societies across the west are horrified at the possibility of the unwashed masses encountering “misinformation” or “conspiracy theories”, which is all the evidence you need that the only path to the truth will never go through their inverse panopticon of manipulated and curated options.
Be Very Evil
By 2018 Google had made it a priority to completely subvert anything that went against the Corporate-State narrative. In preparation for the mid-term elections to prevent their evil orange arch-nemesis from having any legislative mandate they decided to part with their code of conduct motto ‘Don’t Be Evil’. The implication being obvious to anyone paying attention at the time, it was okay to be evil, to manipulate and control people through misinformation and social engineering, so long as it was done to satisfy the self-righteous political demands of leftist activism.
Understanding that Google is a verified and trusted partner of global corporate interests, who have allied themselves with social justice causes, the intelligence community and western surveillance agencies is key to understanding that they want you as far away from the truth as possible. Breaking out of their inverse panopticon is easy. The alternative search engine market is burgeoning and competitive but may require more patience and a longer dedicated hunt via the path of the Cyberflâneur for accurate information. And if you come across inaccurate information that’s fine too, at least it’s not engineered misinformation by legacy media oligarchs dressed up as ‘authoritative information’, of which there is no greater source of intentional and consistent misinformation outside of China today.
The first step in becoming media literate online is knowing which sources to avoid. The Good Citizen has created a simple chart to help guide you on your journey. Avoid anything that is owned or partners with the names at the bottom half of the chart. If you haven’t already figured it out after the past two years of socially engineered insanity, they are constantly lying to you.
Bon voyage Cyberflâneurs.
Late night corporate lackeys doing their part to continue the social engineering and behavioral control. Sponsored by Google.
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Thank GOD!! I grew up in household that escaped communism and nazi occupation. When my grandmother's delivered bread to the table both constantly reminded me how lucky I was to be free. Excellent piece, thank you for your time and commitment to the truth.
Wonderful essay. Particularly liked "The youth of today are a product of 20 years of mistaking Google searches for truth, and truth for knowledge and knowledge for wisdom." So true.
So glad for Substack at the moment as a cyberflâneur (although I'd rather be a flâneur in the real, not virtual world, but my government doesn't think I should go out much anymore).
Appreciate your critical (albeit dangerous) thinking!