Thinkin’ about lying

How yah doin?

A funny thing happened when I started responding to the question “how are you” with the answer “Awesome, I am going to live forever, I have so many specialists looking after me Its impossible to die” as opposed to the truth about my health.

Most respond with a laugh, some who know my situation get serious and push the point and inquire further.

It is not a lie if you believe it” Geroge Castanza

The really interesting part of the lie I started to tell was that I started to believe it myself. Nothing about my blood work changed, my Creatine level stayed the same, my need for treatment of ESRD did not change in the slightest but a bunch of things happened.

I became happier, I laughed more, I was more pleasant to be around, I started to think about projects to start and complete. I pushed myself physically. In the words of Bob Dylan if your not busy being born your busy dying. None of this changes the cold reality of my situation, its just the delusion was completely necessary for some level of happiness.

Doctors warnings

My enthusiasm has actually brought warnings from my doctors, the danger of course is that I will just drop dead one day as opposed to lingering under their care on a dialysis machine or as another doctor insisted he wanted to treat my sleep apnea and deny me a death in my sleep.


Delusions are, by definition, “irrational beliefs or convictions which are at odds with reality.” And yet I feel better about life. I still obey the doctors orders, I shut up and do what the doctors tell me, more often than not. I still think about my situation and plan for the inevitable, its just my attitude is one of complete denial in public.

Its not even a brave face, its an outright bald lie, a falsehood, complete nonsense as transparent as a spiders web yet it makes me and those around me feel better and act better. Taking on this persona is against my better judgment. I prefer the logic of Bertrand Russell when he says things like:

“It is not by delusion, however exalted, that mankind can prosper, but only by unswerving courage in the pursuit of truth.” Bertrand Russell, “The Pursuit of Truth” in The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell (1993).

Culture of Delusion

I know that I am perpetuating an illusion, a lie, I am not going to live forever, its not reality. Delusions, they are pervasive in our digital culture where memes fly faster than truth, vast illusory realms are created draw from our basest desires and hatreds, these illusions are manipulated by others who fully understand the power of the true believer.

I get it, yet I am happier telling a lie and everyone I lie to is happier to hear the delusion. I am sure there are limits to this. Every fundamentalist [blessings to your stupidity] understands what I am experiencing. To believe you will get a mansion if you just give your mansion in this life to Warren Buffett or the military naming an invasion “operation enduring freedom” makes an invasion of bombing of civilians acceptable. I get it.

This all comes back to two ideas I have been thinking about and relating

~The True Believer by Eric Hoffer, which discusses how ideas are adopted and people manipulated

~The Great Transformation by Karl Polanyi, which looks at the growth of market economies and the rise of fascism.

The writings of these two keep percolating in my mind as I compare thier ideas to my other delusions as I try to understand the denial many of us live with, for our own sanity, to get along, to be one of the woke or be invited to the tea party. We will do anything to be part of the chosen or preferred group.

Chomsky’s point

While my delusions help me get thru the day and quell the emotional unrest of an intersection of disease, our media plays a role in pacifying debate and making us all just happy to be alive in such a free and prosperous country

“In ‘Democratic’ societies … the state can’t control behavior by force. …so the state creates the illusion that there’s a debate going on, but making sure that that debate stays within very narrow margins…abiding by accepted assumptions, and those assumptions turn out to be the propaganda system. As long as everyone accepts the propaganda system, then you can have a debate.” summarized from Chronicles of Dissent; Propaganda in the US vs in the USSR (24 October 1986)

The debate around Iraq (2004-2017), Libya (2015–2019), Syria (2014-?), Uganda (2011-2017), Somalia (2007-?), Pakistan (2004-2018), Yemen (2002-?), Afghanistan (2001-2022), Serbia (1998-1999), Haiti (1994-1995), Bosnia (1992-1995), Gulf War (1990-1991), Panama (1989–1990), Libya (1986), Grenada (1983), Lebanon (1982–1984), Cambodia (1967–1975), Korea (1966–1969), Dominica (1965–1966), Bay of Pigs (1961), or Vietnam (1965–1975) revolves around can the US win at an acceptable cost.

The real question should be, can it be involved at all in the internal affairs of any country other than the United States, whether it has any right to try to settle or even influence these internal matters by force. Until this becomes the unique and overriding issue, within the United States, the debate will not even have begun.

Until then we are all fine, we are all going to live forever.