The last 36 hours or so has inspired the inclusion of this extract, by Eckhart Tolle (author of "Power of Now").
Here he discusses "collective ego" and the disharmony such a state of being generates. "Police", "Sitex official" and "Squatter" are the examples of the collective egos in our situation.
"A collective ego manifests the same characteristics as the personal ego, such as the need for conflict and enemies, the need for more, the need to be right against others who are wrong, and so on. Sooner or later, the collective will come into conflict with other collectives, because it unconsciously seeks conflict and it needs opposition to define its boundary and thus its identity. Its members will then experience the suffering that inevitably comes in the wake of any ego-motivated action. At that point, they may wake up and realise that their collective has a strong element of insanity.
A collective ego is usually more unconscious than the individuals that make up the ego. For example, crowds (which are temporary collective egoic entities) are capable of committing atrocities that the individual away from the crowd would not be. Nations frequently engage in behaviour that would be immediately recognizable as psychopathic in an individual.
Cooperation is alien to the ego, except when there is a secondary motive. The ego doesn't know that the more you include others, the more smoothly things flow and the more easily things come to you. When you give little or no help to others or put obstacles in their path, the universe --in the form of people and circumstances-- gives little or no help to you because you have cut yourself off from the whole."