The individual vs. the collective in the Matrix

The individual vs. the collective in the Matrix

by Jon Rappoport

May 24, 2013

In the 1950s, before television had numbed minds and turned them into jelly, there was a growing sense of: the Individual versus the Corporate State.

Something needed to be done. People were fitting into slots. They were surrendering their lives in increasing numbers. They were carving away their own idiosyncrasies and their independent ideas.

Collectivism wasn’t merely a Soviet paradigm. It was spreading like a fungus at every level of American life. It might fly a political banner here and there, but on the whole it was a social phenomenon and nightmare.

Television then added fuel to the fire. Under the control of psyops experts, it became, as the 1950s droned on, the facile barrel of a weapon:

What’s important is the group, the family, peers. Conform. Give in. Bathe in the great belonging…”

Recognize that every message television imparts is a proxy, a fabrication, a simulacrum, an imitation of life one step removed. It isn’t people talking in a park or on a street corner or in a saloon or a barber shop or a meeting hall or a church.

It’s happening on a screen, and that makes it both fake and more real than real.

Therefore, the argument that television can impart important values, if “directed properly,” is specious from the ground up. Television tells lies in its very being. And because it appears to supersede the real, it hypnotizes.

When this medium also broadcasts words and images of belonging and the need to belong, it’s engaged in revolutionary social engineering.

The very opposite of living as a strong, independent, and powerful individual is the cloying need to belong. And the latter is what television ceaselessly promotes.

This is no accident. After World War 2, psychological-warfare operatives turned their attention to two long-term strategies: inculcating negative stereotypes of distant populations, to rationalize covert military plans to conquer and build an empire for America; and disseminating the unparalleled joys of disappearing into a group existence.

When, for example, television promotes “family,” it’s all on the level of fictitiously happy, desperate, yearning, last-chance, problem-resolving, melted-down, trance-inducing, gooey family.

This isn’t, by any stretch, an actual human value. Whether it’s the suburban-lawn family in an ad for the wonders of a toxic medical drug, or the mob family going to the mattresses to fend off a rival, it’s fantasy time in the land of mind control.

Television has carried its mission forward. The consciousness of the Individual versus the State has turned into: love the State. Love the State as family.

The political Left of the 1960s, who rioted against Democratic President Lyndon Johnson, at the Century Plaza Hotel, and ended his hopes to run again in 1968…that Left is now all about the State and its glories and gifts. The collective.

A great deal of the television coverage of mass shootings is now dedicated to bringing home the spurious message: we all grieve together and heal together.

In the only study I have been able to find, Wictionary partially surveys the scripts of all television shows from the year 2006, to analyze the words most frequently broadcast to viewers in America.

Out of 29,713,800 words, including the massively used “a,” “an,” “the,” “you,” “me,” and the like, the word “home” ranks 179 from the top. “Mom” is 218. “Together” is 222. “Family” is 250.

This usage reflects an unending psyop.

Are you with the family or not? Are you with the group, the collective, or not? Those are the blunt parameters.

When you get right down to it, all you have is family.” “Our team is really a family.” “You’re deserting the family.” “You fight for the guy next to you.” “Our department is like a family.” “Here at Corporation X, we’re a family.” “Above all, this is a community.”

The committee, the group, the company, the sector, the planet, the family.

The goal? Submerge the individual and tie him inexorably to a group.

Individual achievement, imagination, creative power? Not on the agenda. Something for the dustbin of history.

All you need to do is fall into the arms of a group. After that, everything is settled. You can care exclusively about the collective.

Aldous Huxley, Brave New World: “‘Ninety-six identical twins working ninety-six identical machines’! The voice was almost tremulous with enthusiasm. ‘You really know where you are. For the first time in history.’”

George Orwell, 1984: “The two aims of the Party are to conquer the whole surface of the earth and to extinguish once and for all the possibility of independent thought.”

Television seeks to emphasize one decision: inclusion or exclusion. Exclusion is portrayed as the only condition that is possible if you aren’t part of the group. And exclusion carries the connotation of exile, excommunication, and criminality.

The soap opera is the apotheosis of television. The long-running characters in Anytown are irreversibly enmeshed in one another’s lives. There’s no escape. And with that comes mind-numbing meddling.

I’m just trying to help you realize we all love you (in chains).”

Your father, rest his soul, would never have wanted you to do this to yourself…”

How dare you set yourself apart from us. Who do you think you are?”

The Matrix Revealed

Of the three elite network anchors, the one who fictionally conveys the sense that “we’re all in this together” is Brian Williams (NBC). He’s also the number-one-rated anchor on the evening news.

Am I saying that no groups anywhere can achieve important objectives? Of course not. I’m talking about a state of mind wherein the individual surrenders his own life-force.

There is an indissoluble link between the artifact called “we” and “limited context.” This is precisely what television news gives to the public. With each story that fails to explore the deeper players and their motives, the news speaks to a collective consciousness, which is to say, the sharing of a fabrication.

What “we” shares is foreshortened perspective, lies, misdirection, and superficial gloss. Those qualities are built for the group, and the group digests them automatically.

The group needs something to focus on, to claim is of the greatest significance. So it settles on those deceptions fed to it. It works with those deceptions, rearranges them, voices them, troubles itself over them, massages them, sculpts them, complains about them, praises them.

Retired psyops specialist Ellis Medavoy once said to me, “I think we’ve reached the point where the collective doesn’t even need a leader anymore. It can take all its cues from television.”

For some people, “we” has a fragrant scent, until they get down in the trenches with it. There they discover odd odors and postures and mutations. They find self-distorted creatures running around doing bizarre things with an exhibitionist flair.

The night becomes long. The ideals melt. The level of intelligence required to inhabit this cave-like realm is lower than expected, much lower.

Perceptions formerly believed to be the glue that holds this territory together begin to crack and fall apart, and all that is left is a grim determination to see things through.

As the night moves into its latter stages, some participants come to know that all their activity is taking place in a chimerical universe.

It is as if reality has been constructed to yield up gibberish.

Whose idea was it to become deaf, dumb, and blind in the first place?

The heart and soul of THE MATRIX REVEALED are the text interviews I conducted with Matrix-insiders, who have first-hand knowledge of how the major illusions of our world are put together. One of those Matrix-insiders is ELLIS MEDAVOY, master of PR, propaganda, and deception, who worked for key controllers in the medical and political arenas. 28 interviews, 290 pages.

And then perhaps one person in the cave suddenly says: I EXIST.

That’s starts a cacophony of howling.

The spell is being broken.

People dimly wonder whether, beyond this night, there is another whole world where individuals live, where some of them do, in fact, join together, but not in a desolate way.

Where individuals finally separate from the sticky substance of coordinated defeat.

The “we” that television gives us is a fiction designed to make the independent individual extinct. That is its job.

In the aftermath of the 1963 assassination of JFK and the 1995 bombing of the Federal Building in Oklahoma City, the covert theme was the same: a lone individual did this.

A lone individual, detached from the group, did this. See what happens when the group is rejected? Lone individuals are really no different than individuals. They are people who left the fold. They wandered from the communal hearth. They thought for themselves. This is what happens when individuals assert their independent existence. They become killers. They lose their way. They break the sacred bond. They are heretics who fall away from the collective.

In 1995, after the Oklahoma City Bombing, President Bill Clinton made a speech to the nation. He rescued his presidency by essentially saying, “Come home to the government. We will protect you and save you.”

He framed the crime in those terms. The individual versus the collective.

Of course, he was an individual who had chosen to be a mouthpiece and a middleman for the elite players who run the collective from above. But that went unnoticed.

The strongest argument against the free and independent and powerful individual, and in favor of the collective is, simply: the collective has advanced to such a degree that there is no going back; the individual can’t win; the battle is over.

All I can say is, I’ve never accepted an argument on that basis, and never will. The liberation of the individual has existed as an aim since the dawn of time on this planet. That aim will not vanish.

Why? Because underneath all the programs for mind control, there is, obviously, something to control. Otherwise, why bother? The deeper you go in discovering what “must be controlled,” the more freedom and power and imagination you encounter in the individual.

There is no limit. These three qualities are endless.

It may not seem so. It may seem that all the propaganda about the inherent weakness and smallness of the human being is accurate. But that is a false dream.

The reality is far different.

A million psyops won’t change that reality.

Exit From the Matrix

Finally, here is a 1980 quote from author Philip K Dick. He is writing poignantly about another titan of science fiction, Robert Heinlein. The relevance of his words to the subject of this article? There are probably a number of interpretations. I won’t try to flesh it out. I’ll leave it to you to decide:

“Several years ago, when I was ill, Heinlein offered his help, anything he could do, and we had never met; he would phone me to cheer me up and see how I was doing. He wanted to buy me an electric typewriter, God bless him—one of the few true gentlemen in this world. I don’t agree with any ideas he puts forth in his writing, but that is neither here nor there. One time when I owed the IRS a lot of money and couldn’t raise it, Heinlein loaned the money to me. I think a great deal of him and his wife; I dedicated a book to them in appreciation. Robert Heinlein is a fine-looking man, very impressive and very military in stance; you can tell he has a military background, even to the haircut. He knows I’m a flipped-out freak and still he helped me and my wife when we were in trouble. That is the best in humanity, there; that is who and what I love.”

Okay, I can’t resist giving you one more from Philip Dick. I don’t agree with the “motive” part of the quote, but everything else? Perfect.

Because today we live in a society in which spurious realities are manufactured by the media, by governments, by big corporations, by religious groups, political groups…So I ask, in my writing, What is real? Because unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudo-realities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of the mind. I ought to know. I do the same thing.”

The question is, in gaining freedom from these pseudo-realities, does the process happen for everyone at once, or is it one individual at a time? The answer is clear, and it tells us a great deal about the illusion of the collective.

Jon Rappoport

The author of two explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED and EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free emails at


20 comments on “The individual vs. the collective in the Matrix

  1. Lynne says:

    Check out Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television, by Jerry Mander, written in 1973– evidence of how TV changes us on many levels.

  2. sistertongue says:

    If Heinlein had been truly able to do the right thing, he would have simply GIVEN the money to Dick. To place someone, weak and ill, in a position of indebtedness and gratitude is NOT doing the right thing, it’s about trying to ensure dependence. And that is what the military/industrial complex is all about – creating a sense of loyalty. This example is a perfect metaphor, right down to Dick’s obvious adulation of the “military – right down to the haircut.”

    No, folks, don’t take the “gift.” Because it’s really not one.

    Great article, Jon. So dead on, and I do not watch TV, nor have ever purchased one. What idiot would? I do have access to them, but only watch them to see how the propaganda is being disseminated at this point in time.

    Thanks for your writings.

  3. kozandaishi says:

    Brilliant as always, Jon – Thank you.

  4. david says:

    I quit watching TV about 30 years ago–I just lost interest. Suddenly, nothing on the tube could compare to real life or the ideas I found in books. Your essay reminds me of something I say to people when I don’t mind sounding odd: I remind them that nothing on TV is real, it’s all scripted, every inch of it. Any contact with reality went out with the demise of live programming in the late ’50’s, and even then the lapses were inadvertent. Of course, people look at me funny when I say stuff like that, so I usually don’t. But the problem is, people really do confuse the tube with reality. This is made worse by the fact that TV is a babysitter. These poor kids are having their perceptions of reality formed by scriptwriters. It was bad enough when I was a kid–I lost several years of real-life experience to TV by the time I graduated from high school. But now the content is positively malevolent. It’s now not only an alternate reality, it’s a vicious alternate reality.

  5. marinaalbin says:

    Thank you for your article and the book.

  6. Well expressed.

    Only in recent years have I been able to realize that my parents, other family, and friends never really had different values, objectives or concerns, regardless of religious leanings or politics. It’s their collectivist god that always traps their minds. This god is entirely imaginary and simultaneously the most real thing to them – often, the ony thing they’re certain of in their lives. Having the complete opposite viewpoint – a natural, real-world viewpoint – is what set me appart. With that understanding, I’ve gained much peace and the conversations have begun to open up more and more.

    I hope people still entranced by the collectivist idol also read
    this article Jon.

    Thank you.

  7. In the early years of 1970 between Harvard and MIT discovered Audio Subliminal Communication which applied to my independent research. Daily at MIT student TV room sat upfront to watch CBS Walter Cronkite evening news. During commercial breaks got up to turn off the audio for every 5 minutes a minute of 2 thirty second products in half hour program 10 items and never ever anyone complained. Furthermore in home of BF Skinner Harvard scientist discussed my theory he confided in me saying he to turned off the volumne. 1978 made experiment saving Radio City Music Hall from closing. For 14 hours alone everyday in front for 53 days of 730 hours won and went in the place I had never been in to see the Easter show. Long Term Attention Span I called it as for ads never heard again any and what a pleasure in peace of mind.

  8. I’ve been suspicious of the “We are One” mantras of the new age “enlightened” for several years now. I have found that when one truly becomes spiritual and connects with one’s higher self / soul / inner power (direct access to Source), one finds oneself alone, an individual, no longer wishing to be part of the herd…any herd for that matter. Plus, to connect and integrate with your higher self requires you to become an individual, as you follow the inner guidance within, NOT the spiritual guidelines of the gurus. Thanks for this article!

    Christine Hoeflich
    The Great Shift, Your Higher Self and the Divine Plan Blog

  9. abzu2 says:

    Kudos Jon. Re-blogged @ AbZu2

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thanks Jon, Collectivists drank the Kool Aid ( Flavor Aid).

  11. Samuel says:

    Jon, your comment on the lone gunman makes perfect sense now…thanks for your insight. This point had slipped me all these years. “Don’t wander off the ranch, it’s dangerous out there!”
    “No need to worry, I’m a well armed and well prepared individual!” Keep-em-coming Jon! Thanks!

  12. Adam Lilien says:

    Jon, I read a lot of writers and you are among the best. So clear and interesting and brave. I do want to make a comment about this article on collectivism vs. individualism. I do not think you have shown a way to resolve the inherent dilemma. It seems to me that through the contracted control space of modern economics and politics no resolution possible.

    In the higher dimension space (reality) we have “The Whole (instead of collectivism) and the Whologram (instead of individualism)”. As has been understood for ages, only the soul can become liberated. There can never be a mass liberation. However, like popcorn popping conditions can be created for more popping to happen.

    Inherently, the Whologram and The Whole are unified like 0 and infinity are reciprocals. We express this by a natural service to the Whole, not a collectivistic agenda.

  13. Cindi Burkey says:

    I seem to be unable to post a comment which contains the URL of where I reblogged your piece.

    But if you search on [ or] you will find where I reblogged it. It’s titled:
    Jon Rappoport on TV: “Fantasy Time In The Land Of Mind Control”

    I can’t thank you enough for your columns and the time I know it takes to think about these things and write them.

  14. Cindi Burkey says:

    @Lynne–Gerry Mander’s book ‘Four Arguments’ is among the most amazing things I’ve read about TV….still totally relevant.

  15. […] The Matrix in our time: the state as video family by Jon Rappoport (from […]

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