Before we continue allow me to summarize the main arguments from Part 1.
The Patriot A.
argues that in the Internet age, the flow of information has become far too complex and grandiose.
The natural outcome of this overabundance of information is that human beings, on account of their natural fallibility, are unable to separate factual and valuable information from information that is at best incomplete, and at worst filled with outright lies.
On account of our tribal instincts, our political biases our emotional fragility and flawed intellect, we will potentially embrace information that conforms to our worldview best, rather than information that is true.
In the era of fake news, this has undoubtedly been demonstrated as fact.
as we build up echo chambers that confirm our political leanings and demonize those who express dissent.
In response to the inherent truth of this argument, the A.
proposed a frightening solution: Create a system that controls human will and consciousness.
A system that compromises a human beings quote unquote “free will” to come to their own conclusions.
Though such a system is repulsive to myself and hopefully many of you, the A.
s will demonstrate how human beings might abuse their freedom so much that such a system might be inevitable.
Worse yet, they demonstrate how easily a system could be implemented without protest, as the main character Raiden so clearly proves.
Never in my life have I heard an insult as cutting and condescending.
Put aside just for a second whether or not quote unquote “free will” is a valid concept.
To say that somebody lacks the qualifications to exercise free will, suggests that their personality is entirely constructed by outside forces.
For example, if you believe that abortion is an unethical practice, or an ethical practice, did you come to that conclusion yourself? Did you put together a bunch of arguments from opposing sides and decide for yourself what the best answer was? Or did you hear one person's argument and close yourself off to opposing arguments?.
much like an ideologue tends to do.
In regards to Raiden, the A.
goes on to demonstrate that he, like billions of people on the planet, tend to embrace ideas and actions not necessarily based on their adherence to truth, but rather based on how effectively they promote a certain way of being.
This goes back to Nietzsche's famous criticism of philosophers and Beyond Good and Evil.
While philosophers might proclaim a desire for objective truth, they are more than likely trying to justify their worldview and way of life.
This is why fake news exists.
This is why echo chambers crop up all over the Internet, despite the wealth of information available to us that should allow us to live in accordance with truth.
It is because living in accordance with truth and developing a sense of free will can be life threatening.
So, people choose to embrace falsehoods in order to protect their sanity.
Raiden then desperately protests that he is not a product of the mindless masses.
Up until this point in the game, Raiden and the player believed that their successes were achieved entirely by their own merit.
However, the A.
revealed that the entire mission was structured in a way so that Raiden would succeed, as long as he obeyed orders.
For Raiden to find out that he was not in fact a legendary mercenary, but rather a clueless puppet that helped enslave the world, is bad enough.
However, it is when the A.
offers the more ideal fiction to Raiden that he is “simply the best”, that the insult has its greatest effect.
Raiden cringes and hold back a scream because he sees the truth inherent in the A.
That argument being that Raiden is not his own person.
His actions and emotions are all controlled by a higher power.
He's not Raiden.
He's not even Jack.
He's something else's creation.
then go on to show how Raiden's lack of self is endemic to billions of people.
Once again, the A.
demonstrate how people will gravitate to quote-unquote “truths” not because they are based entirely on empirical fact, but because they satisfy the instinctual need for structure and stability.
For argument's sake, let's imagine somebody who has spent half their life advocating a belief that the earth was flat; that the government wants people to believe it is round for territorial reasons.
Let's say the flat earther is presented conclusive information that proves the earth is round.
If they accept that they were wrong, that would mean they spent over half their life advocating falsehoods and manipulating impressionable minds.
What toll would that realization take upon their soul? If they don't accept that they were wrong, They will accept a more convenient truth to protect their emotional persona.
Such a truth might be that the evidence presented to them was doctored, And that the person presenting the information is a government shill.
This behavior extends not just to conspiracy theorists, but anybody with a political position.
This is the reason why millions of people continue to advocate for political systems Despite their proven track record of killing millions of people.
This is why people still uphold certain superstitious beliefs despite their scientific invalidity.
This behavior is not relegated to a few irrational individuals.
It's something that everybody does, regardless of their political position.
I do it, and you do it.
and worst of all, in a democracy, the emotionally fragile have a say in what is truth.
which the A.
shall now criticize.
Because the A.
s grew out of the White House's quote-unquote “primordial soup”, they recognize the inherent value of freedom, and the responsibility that comes along with it.
In their mind, Raiden, and billions like him, take all the benefits of freedom, without accepting any of the responsibility that comes along with it.
Instead of using their freedom to seek out truths that foster the human race, they resort to partisanship and ideology to make sense of the world.
Instead of being introspective and considering the potential faults in one's position, they will cast the blame elsewhere.
The result of this is stagnation, and soon afterwards violence.
This extends not just to our leaders, but to ourselves.
At this juncture, I feel the need to repeat something I said in the first video: I am NOT for censorship or controlling information whatsoever I think the ultimate conclusion that the A.
s come to is wrong.
Even if they were right, I am certainly not giving up the ability to control my own life and make my own decisions.
But put aside their conclusion and consider whether or not their arguments are wrong! Do human beings consume fake news and accept it as truth? Do billions of people hold beliefs that are objectively wrong? Can ideologues and fundamentalists negatively influence our societies? If the 20th century is any indication, it only takes one bad idea, and maybe even one bad person to ruin the world.
In the social media age, this ruination becomes all the more likely as almost anybody can build up a large enough following to influence influence millions of minds.
They don't even need a large following! They could just covertly produce a system like the one the A.
s are proposing.
And when A.
inevitably comes to be, maybe our reality could see its reflection in the reality of Metal Gear Solid 2.
For the sake of time and brevity, I will skip over the next few minutes of this conversation.
They are basically a retread of what has already been discussed.
Before I play the final clip, I wish to summarize with the A.
They created a scenario where Raiden, and by extension the player, had to obey several different orders from their commanding officer.
It did not matter if many of those orders seemed unjustifiable.
what mattered to Raiden and the gamer was being able to live out a fantasy as a legendary mercenary.
That emotional desire was so strong that it prevented any form of rationality.
This emotional desire overcoming rationality, is reflective of many different situations in our everyday lives.
We see it in our news feeds, on our social media, and even in our own actions.
Unlike human beings, A.
are not prone to emotion.
For this reason the A.
s feel they are the saviors of humankind.
They will control thoughts so human beings may live in blissful ignorance, and the A.
s no longer have to tolerate mass stupidity.
In their victory, the A.
mocks Raiden for his various faults.
Is this our future? If we have no systemic solution to the problem of fake news, and we continue to drown in overflowing information, what will our society become? This video game.
not a book.
not a movie.
a VIDEO GAME so eloquently explained the impossibility of this problem roughly two decades before it reached public consciousness.
The fact that it was all done within this 15-minute conversation, makes it truly the most profound moment in gaming history.
It is a moment that has haunted me for decades, specifically because of how it makes a pessimistic future seem so certain.
I figured that any solution, no matter how ineffective it may seem would be better than to let Kojima's nightmare come to pass.
As I briefly referenced in the first video, there is one thing that can be done.
We must rediscover the power that an individual holds.
If a single person has the potential to ruin the world, a single person has the potential to save it.
I hold no delusions of grandeur for myself, but I know that there is strength in numbers.
If enough people wake up to the complex problem of misinformation, half-truths and fake news, and do everything in their power to live in accordance with fact, rather than tribalistic instinct, we will most certainly survive.
But even better than that, we will be able to preserve our freedom for the coming generations.
The power is in YOUR hands.