And the most ironic thing about it is that Orwell was trying to disparage authoritarianism, but his imaginary dystopia has only become real in good old capitalist ‘Murica.
In case you haven’t read 1984, the society which the main character lives in, Oceania, is constantly at war with one of the other two regions in the world: Eastasia or Eurasia. Oceania’s government uses this perpetual war to justify its own shortcomings. For example, large sectors of the economy are devoted to war. Although not explicitly stated, the oligarchs of Oceania presumably make vast amounts of money off of weapons, or else they wouldn’t be getting produced. But Oceania’s concentration on war means that the consumer goods sector of the economy is too small to sustain their population comfortably. The citizens of Oceania are able to be convinced that Eurasia/Eastasia is responsible for Oceania’s shortcomings. This is because they’ve been brainwashed from an early age into devoting themselves to Oceania and the idea that its military “fights for their freedom”. Because the perpetual war is so helpful to Oceania in controlling its populace and benefiting the oligarchs, Oceania would never actually try to end the war. They could probably do it by say blockading Eurasia/Eastasia or occupying one of their capitals. But they never would.
In case you don’t live in America, the society in which Americans live in has been fighting a “War on Terror” against Islamic extremist groups for two decades. America’s government uses this perpetual war to justify its own shortcomings. For example, America spends hundreds of billions of dollars on the military per year that could be dedicated to paying back the debt, healthcare, or education. Instead, this vast amount of money is used to bolster a military so that foreign markets/resources can be secured for its oligarchs. The citizens of America are able to be convinced into believing that Islamic extremists are responsible for America’s shortcomings. This is because they’ve been brainwashed from an early age into devoting themselves to America and the idea that its military “fights for their freedom”. Because the perpetual war is so helpful to America in controlling its populace and benefiting its oligarchs, America would never try to actually end the war. They could do it by say legalizing opium and pushing the rest of the world to do the same so that Islamic extremists no longer have a source of income. But they never would.
America = Oceania. Quod Erat Demonstrandum.