Friday, August 15, 2014

The Giver

The movie (The Giver) beautifully demonstrates a fully-realized concept of what radical egalitarianism could look like in practice. In fact, the community could even be faulted for being too kind to egalitarians — the beautiful, idealized world of peace and harmony has, in the movie, existed for generations without falling prey to many of the easy faults of conceived utopias. Everything is clean, the people content, all obvious needs are provided. This idea that people can be perfectly planned for gives credit to the idea of centralized planning in a way that almost undermines the premise of the movie.

Of course all of the centralized planning comes at a cost: mandatory injections remove emotion, choice, personal rights, and even color. Essentially the community can only be perfect because people no longer have a choice. The film fills in the gaps with flashes of color — flashbacks of a world with color, choice, freedom, love. It also shows in full color the downside — war, loss, pain and suffering. The injections took away the ability to choose- which is ultimately what makes us human.

Already, the Harry Potter Alliance has begun to try to own the narrative of another dystopia: the Hunger Games. Rather than seeing the government as the enemy, the website tries to claim the problems are due to “economic inequality” rather than government interference. They are teaching young adults the wrong message, and getting away with it because they aren’t being called on it.
Ultimately, the plot is resolved when (spoiler alert!)

....   the main protagonist returns choice to the people and they can finally choose for themselves. Color returns to the community, disaster is averted and egalitarianism is finally seen for what it is — cruel control without a conscience. The message is clear: a free people will never allow their choice to be taken away. This is a crucial lesson — if it can be owned and presented as such.

One of the big faults of the conservative movement is that it does not often capitalize on narrative, and allows the left to fill in the gaps. Recently, it was uncovered that a giant cabal of left-wing organizations were organizing online in a Google Group called the “Gamechanger Salon”. After some research, one reporter compiled a list of identifiable members, where a group called the “Harry Potter Alliance” was listed with 12 members — one of the most prominent groups on the entire list. This Harry Potter Alliance lists the following as their organizational purpose:

“Just as Dumbledore’s Army wakes the world up to Voldemort’s return, works for equal rights of house elves and werewolves, and empowers its members, we: Work with partner NGOs in alerting the world to the dangers of global warming, poverty, and genocide. Work with our partners for equal rights regardless of race, gender, and sexuality.”

This egalitarian message demonstrates the exact kind of thinking that would lead to the creation of a community like in The Giver. ​When a society pushes for everything to be the same, people lose their power of will and choice. The liberal fantasy world where the government has the power to equalize everyone is also the fantasy world where government has the power to remove all choice.

In practice, the push for “equal rights” becomes “equal outcomes,” as with the class-war “99 percent” movement and failed “war on poverty,” Personal choice is removed in the name of “global warming”, nationality in the name of “genocide” and color in the name of “race, gender, and sexuality”. It’s not hard to see why in this idealized world, you can’t see color — everything is torn down to sameness in the name of “equality.”


This may be the first movie I see in a theater since, what?  Bad Santa?


Anonymous said...

Remember the first rule of "Kill Egalitarians Club": you don't talk about Kill Egalitarians Club.

Anonymous said...

Harrison Bergeron, REDUX?

Vonster said...

Didn't they do this movie?

Wasn't it called Equalibrium?

Anonymous said...

Depends on who decides what's perfect. Or as Kim says, who draws the line. Used to be most people just want be left alone; now nearly half ask "Waddaya got for me today?" and 5% want to be the deciders of what to give (or to take, depending on where you stand).
Lt. Col. Gen. Tailgunner dick

Chris in NC said...

Just saw it. Boring and predictable. Unlike the movies that borrowed from it (hunger games and divergent), this movie was had no twists or even anything that made you care about the characters. I'll give it a 6-6.5. Still better than T.V. :)

Rodger the Real King of France said...

Thank you Chris. It will then, I imagine, play only to the choir.

Chris in NC said...

Probably correct on that. I did appreciate the way they laid out the beliefs of the state. They haven't eliminated death, they just call it "a different name" was awesome and in the context of the movie it was really good. When people are allowed to choose, they choose wrong. Again, brilliant. The biggest problem I had was the lack of twist/surprise or any real "excitement". It doesn't have to be Michael Bay explosions but to just have a movie of talking and bickering wasn't my cup of tea.

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