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This year’s election process has been rather trying to many people’s emotional equilibrium mostly due to the two major presidential candidates’ projected and/or perceived indecency and/or dishonesty. Now Hillary Clinton lost this presidential race to a highly inexperienced person. Like others in this country I accept the result: probably this election merely revealed the true color of America, the USA as it really is. Most American are not more morally developed people: they are no better than other peoples. In retrospect, the US as a nation probably had tried too hard to project itself as a very civilized society compared with others though most Americans are essentially motivated by a pleasure principle which is exemplified by the president Elect.

Here I want to quote a passage from Sigmund Freud’s influential work Civilization and Its Discontent since I believe they sheds light to what happened in US Election 2016.

“We come upon a contention which is so astonishing that we must dwell upon it. This contention holds that what we call our civilization (Kultur) is largely responsible for our misery, and that we should be much happier if we gave it up and returned to primitive conditions. I call this contention astonishing because, in whatever way we may define the concept of civilization, it is a certain fact that all the things with which we seek to protect ourselves against the threats that emanate from the sources of suffering are part of that very civilization.

…men are not gentle creatures, who want to be loved, who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness. As a result, their neighbor is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to use him sexually without his consent, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him. Homo homini lupus [man is wolf to man]. Who in the face of all his experience of life and of history, will have the courage to dispute this assertion? As a rule this cruel aggressiveness waits for some provocation or puts itself at the service of some other purpose, whose goal might also have been reached by milder measures. In circumstances that are favorable to it, when the mental counter-forces which ordinarily inhibit it are out of action, it also manifests itself spontaneously and reveals man as a savage beast to whom consideration towards his own kind is something alien….

The existence of this inclination to aggression, which we can detect in ourselves and justly assume to be present in others, is the factor which disturbs our relations with our neighbor and which forces civilization into such a high expenditure [of energy]. In consequence of this primary mutual hostility of human beings, civilized society is perpetually threatened with disintegration. The interest of work in common would not hold it together; instinctual passions are stronger than reasonable interests. Civilization has to use its utmost efforts in order to set limits to man’s aggressive instincts and to hold the manifestations of them in check by psychical reaction-formations. Hence, therefore, the use of methods intended to incite people into identifications and aim-inhibited relations of love, hence the restriction upon sexual life, and hence too the ideal’s commandment to love one’s neighbor as oneself — a commandment which is really justified by the fact that nothing else runs so strongly counter to the original nature of man.”

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