Following the logic of the hierarchy, the upper class controls the lower class, and power is always above the lower classes. That is why governments, which are the ones that have absolute power over all citizens, have multiple ways in which they control and manipulate us as if we were puppets. Governments manage our daily behaviour on the street, and the worst thing is that many times we don’t even know they are doing it.
People who have the audacity to rule us, who dare to call themselves governors, understand this basic fact, besides the component of “fear”. They exploit them, and they promote them. Whether they establish a militaristic state or a welfare state, governments depend on power and fear to ensure public submission, to ensure compliance with their official mandates and, at times, to achieve active cooperation with the initiatives and adventures of the state itself. As for the ways in which governments control the dominated classes, there are two highly recognized visions: the one propose by George Orwell, which is to take control over what we do not like (fear), and the one by Aldous Huxley, which is to exert power over what we like (distraction). Either way, it seems we are all screwed.
15. Metal studs
In many first-world countries, particularly in the Western Hemisphere, governments are installing stud and metal bars of different shapes and designs on benches in parks, squares and public places. Strategically, its purpose is to prevent young people from walking and boarding these places on skateboards. Many governments consider skaters to be a plague, because the detriment to the public space they cause is highly costly and uncomfortable for them. That is why they have come up with this form, filling the places with small obstructions and obstacles, thus preventing skaters from wandering around the city doing their tricks.
14. Fake security cameras
One thing that is left over in many places is usually the implementation of security cameras at every corner or street. And this is good, because it is a way in which governments, you could say, protect us and give us some peace of mind and security, because we are supposed to be monitored on our behalf. But the truth is that reports indicate that about 40% of surveillance cameras in large cities are either not working, turned off or simply there is no one to check what they record. This is done in order to keep the population more regulated, because people, seeing surveillance cameras everywhere, make them behave better, or at least not in a criminal way.
13. Support arms on benches
It is an obvious fact that in all cities, especially public roads and parks, there are many benches so that anyone who is passing through can sit down and take a break. What you didn’t know is that a lot of countries benches in parks have started to have multiple armrests in between, which many people may find comfortable at first sight because it allows the arms to be in a better resting position or to separate each seat on the bench. But the reality is very different, because the only purpose of this is to prevent homeless and beggars from sleeping on the benches.
12. Metal spikes
Surely, you’ve seen those metal spikes in many parts of the cities. These ornaments are not random, nor are they decorative. Quite the opposite. The idea is that they should be installed to prevent people from feeling or sleeping in these areas. Its principle is the same as that of armrests on benches. Hundreds of bars, restaurants, office or residential areas have installed these picks on their main fronts to prevent people from resting or sleeping there. For some time now, these picks (or even spiked shaped rocks) have even been installed under vehicle bridges, precisely to prevent the formation of improvised camp areas by vagabonds.
11. Police cars
In large countries with many inhabitants, where controlling population, crime and insecurity is a difficult task, a technique has been implemented that has yielded results, and its model is being replicated in smaller countries with fewer residents. Many police patrols are sighted in many parts of the cities, but what is surprising is that they are parked there, empty, for hours or even days, without any police officers getting on board. They do this as a simple distraction trap, setting a decoy for people to feel the presence of authority, which has helped reduce the rate of theft or violations of the law.
10. Blue lights
According to experts, the blue light tells our brain that it is not yet time to go to sleep. Over the past 50 years, the average length of hours of sleep and the quality of sleep have decreased, with detrimental consequences for general health. Lack of sleep has also been linked to mood problems, anxiety and depression, and an increased risk of accidents. That’s why, in Japan, blue lights have been installed in several cities on the train platforms and subway stations in order to prevent people from falling asleep on the railroad track or jumping there to commit suicide, which is a major public health problem in this country. During the first four years of the project, the suicide rate in train stations dropped by 84%.
9. Pink colored prisons
Again, color plays an impressive role in mass control. This time, it’s not the blue one, but the pink one who is the protagonist. In many prisons in South America, the walls, courtyards or even the cells inside are painted pink. Also, the prisoner’s clothing is colored by this particular and feminine color. Psychological studies state that pink can more quickly and effectively calm anger and anxiety, even for the most problematic or bloodthirsty prisoner. Perhaps, at first sight, these prisoners look prettier dressed in pink, as tender as a teddy bear. But no, it’s not so that they look sweet, but so that their behavior lowers revolutions.
8. Limited number of seats at airports
Airports in the world’s major capitals carry millions of passengers every day. And despite this large number of people, it is curious that these airports never have enough chairs in the boarding halls. Hundreds of people must sit on the floor while they wait for their flight, but the main idea is to encourage people to sit and wait inside a commercial establishment and to consume their products. This strategy is being replicated in many shopping malls, where public places to sit are limited, forcing people to enter a restaurant or café so that, if they want to rest, they can go in there and buy something while they are spending time.
7. Classical music on metro lines
It is difficult to find young people today who like classical music from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Of course, there will be exceptions, but generally young people in recent decades do not find classical music stimulating. That is why governments, in an attempt to prevent gangs of young people from gathering together and committing robberies or crimes in underground train or subway stations, have implemented a plan to put classical music in these places. Governments assume that since young people do not like this kind of music, it will be intolerable for them to be there, so they will keep these crowded areas safer.
6. Placebo buttons
Patience is not a virtue of 21st century humanity. In fact, in this fast-paced and consumerist society, where “time is gold”, as Adam West said in the classic Batman series of the 1960s, rushing is part of the daily menu. Governments have therefore installed a system in many streets corners of their large and crowded cities, which allows the pedestrian to push a button so that the traffic light turns red if there is no car nearby. Actually, this is a trick, because in most cases, that button is useless, but we, as a human race, feel a placebo in believing that we have the control to change traffic lights and be able to cross a street faster.
5. Plate readers
You’ve probably grown tired of seeing people who are constantly detained by cops to do a basic check of their driver’s license and registration, but what you didn’t know is that those checks aren’t as unnecessary as you think. Cars are often stopped so that the cameras on the roadways, bridges and tolls can clearly capture the plates of the vehicles, so that they can later create a record of where you’ve been, when and why. In this way, governments will know as far as the most remote place you have visited, and it will not be easy for you to evade a judicial test if you have been doing something bad.
4. Telephone calls
We’ve all seen in the movies the classic spying style that agents have of getting into a phone line very easily. The reality is that we are prone to being overheard in many of our daily calls by government oversight agencies, which are engaged in this with millions of people in order to find unusual calls or conversations. By leaking telephone lines, drug traffickers, murderers and kidnappers have been discovered. The purpose is good, but being listened to in your absurd conversations with friends or family, or when you feel naughty with your partner, is a bit creepy.
3. Modern cars
Needless to say, more and more modern, luxurious cars are coming out every day, with advances containing hundreds of new technologies that make them look more comfortable, as if they were a car driven by James Bond. However, all these apparent advantages at the same time make it easier for governments to spy on us. From GPS to stereo (much more so if you are connected by WiFi or Bluetooth to your mobile device) contain specific items that will let government agents know each of your driving habits and your exact whereabouts, as their computerized systems are easily penetrable. Sometimes, it’s better old than modern.
2. Personal computers
Although it might be hard to believe, accessing family computers in each household is not so complicated. Many computer geeks, known in the underworld as hackers, are hired by spy agencies to gain access to your system through various methods and malware, obviously without your consent. In many countries, there have been hundreds of reports of people claiming to be spied on daily by cameras and microphones embedded in their laptops. Some others believe that everything starts from the big companies that manufacture computers, because it is there where they usually place microchips to facilitate the entrance to the espionage groups.
The government doesn’t care at all if you gave “like” to the video of the kitten that became viral, or the dog that dances on two legs. What they do take note of is your messages and conversations you make with your contacts, specifically on social networks; and most importantly, what words you search on Google when browsing websites. A few years ago, by simply writing certain sensitive words, such as “terrorist”, “bomb” or “massacre”, you were immediately put on red light for government agencies. Today’s smartphones are easy places to penetrate, so be careful what you search and type. So, be careful, since you might have already the FBI on you.
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