What, then, is truth? A mobile army of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms—in short, a sum of human relations which have been enhanced, transposed, and embellished poetically and rhetorically, and which after long use seem firm, canonical, and obligatory to a people: truths are illusions about which one has forgotten that this is what they are; metaphors which are worn out and without sensuous power; coins which have lost their pictures and now matter only as metal, no longer as coins.http://rickroderick.org/202-nietzsche-on-truth-and-lie-1991/
That’s taken to be one of Nietzsche’s outrageous statements about truth, that its metaphoric, it’s a sum of human relations, deployed in many fields of force, in short; mutually agreed upon fictions, which after long use seem obligatory to a people. And this… I take it to be one of Nietzsche’s stronger remarks about truth. And I think that we can make that clear with the history of our own country.
There are certain things that after long use that have become obligatory for us to believe are true. I have heard, and I have heard it ad nauseam, and until ah, well, ad nauseam. Let me say it in my West Texas way; until I want to puke, I have heard it. That the United States is a democracy. Because after long use, after herd like obedience to this word, we have come to believe it. The most dangerous thing, in some ways, that threatens our democracy is the belief of the overwhelming majority of our citizens that perhaps in some sense we do have one. If we questioned deeply what a democracy is, you know, a government in which the power really does come from a people or whatever. If we question these worn out metaphors, and looked behind… in other words, try to look for their origins in power and who deploys them, it might become interesting to see that this is an illusion about which we have long since forgotten that it is one.
The power of Nietzsche’s genealogy is to look at how important words to us; like truth, good, evil, and in the case I just used, democracy. Not in order to destroy these words forever, or to destroy their deployment, but in order to point out how they become worn out after long use. And certainly, compared to the vibrancy of the word democracy, you know, its earlier – as he said – earlier when the word was used in the dawning of the bourgeois revolutions, when it was used with such sensuous power, with such effect, you know, with little town meetings and public spheres, people fighting things out… vigorous like that… at least as we idealise it, perhaps that was an illusion too. But compared to that, our current democracy does seem – to borrow the metaphor – to be like a coin without a face. A metaphor that is worn out and lost its power.
If there was a substance to liberal ideals, it was when it was fresh and new, energy needed to establish itself, but it has become worn out like a faceless coin. Which I suppose is exactly the conclusion you come to in saying it's zombified and isn't organically connected to the people. Because over time, such a association was chip away at and we're left with a hollow husk that is only the thinnest appearance of what it was. I suppose part of it is also a case that the most dangerous ideology is one's own ideology, because people can see the inconsistencies and cracks based on what it says it does/aims for and what it is in practice.http://rickroderick.org/105-hegel-and-modern-life-1990/
Real movements for Democracy are oddly enough most threatening in nominal democracies. That’s a principle of Hegelian discourse. In other words, if you live by an ideology, the most dangerous ideology to you is your own, because someone may expect you to do what you say. So, in that sense Communist ideology as many of you know was never a real threat in the United States, right. Very few Communists got elected to Senate and so on. It’s just not really popular.
And once that's noticed, that disillusionment happens, one is no longer legitimized by their ideology and people seek new meanings. Particularly if they feel crushed under such conditions, which gives them cause to feel that something should change and to question why it isn't changing for the better.
It's like a relationship where one's in love, one can be swayed purely by emotions to look past the flaws, but once the relationship isn't living up to its expectations one then becomes mighty critical and really questions if they want the relationship.
This isn't inherently a bad thing I don't think, it won't be pleasant but it opens up possibilities, some good, some bad, depending on where you're standing ^_^
Or on the other hand its just cause for concern because it means people don't feel like they have the power to change anything because they experience life as atomized individuals and they simply resign themselves to such sort of authoritarian rule. Which they in a sense already experience as there can be no significant challenge to capitalist rule. But even in such terrible circumstances, there's always potential for change, one could seek to agitate and 'wake' people up and make them feel life rather than numb it, harness their anger to certain goals. It would seem that many already do this, but not to the self interest of many in even the short term sense.