“The News” – Jefferson, Chomsky, propaganda, and alternatives

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring
As I keep saying, stop watching, reading or listening to “the news.” It is misinformation, disinformation, propaganda, distortion, lies and illusions, mass distraction and mass manipulation – psychological warfare, to put it in the terms of the “intelligence” community – mixed together with a healthy dose of sheer trivia, sensationalism and fluff ( also largely a form of psychological warfare).
Thomas Jefferson was right, “He who does not read the newspapers is better off than he who reads them, because it is better to know nothing, than to have your mind filled with lies, half-truths and illusions.”
Chomsky also summarized it perfectly well. The mass media acts as a propaganda system, working on behalf of the ruling elite, by a great number of well-trained, deeply indoctrinated, self-censoring individuals along with simple liars, creating “necessary illusions” and “manufacturing consent” so that the business elite who rule the society can keep the masses controlled, alienated, divided, demoralized and distracted, while they rob and pillage the nation and the world.
If you want to know what’s going on, go to the library, and read a book. If that doesn’t seem enough, which it is, and more than enough, if the books are well-chosen, then go to CounterPunch, Global Research (Centre for Research on Globalization), the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Trends Research Institute or Gerald Celente. Unlike the vast majority of media outlets, journalists and commentators (including most of the so-called “alternative”, “progressive”, and “independent” ones), they don’t lie and they don’t have their heads up their asses. They will tell you what’s really going on. With only a rare few exceptions, virtually all of the rest are pure drivel at best.
JTR,
January 26, 2016
See:
Necessary Illusions – Chomsky
Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Mass Media
and my own recently released work:
Enlightened Democracy: Visions For A New Millennium – on Amazon now.

 

“Liberals” bash Bernie, get Berned

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

Advisory: Adult language warning, adult conversation – not for children or those who watch FOX or CNN:

The whores to corporate America, the political and media prostitutes, including Bill Clinton and Paul Krugman, are coming out with guns a-blazing. Bernie Sanders responds matter of factly that his policy platform is in accord with what the people want, and it is entirely achievable, if we simply require the richest few and the big corporations to pay their fair share of taxes – and it’s far from radical or utopian.

“Yes, I believe the wealthiest 1% and the largest corporations should start paying their fair share of taxes. That’s what the people want. That’s not utopian.”
– U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders​

And in stark contrast to the honesty and integrity of Bernie Sanders, we have slick Willie Clinton and his Botox bauble, Hilary-for-hire-Clinton – the veritable vestibules of virtue and paragons of honesty in politics.

Hillary Blames Bernie for an Old Clintonite Hustle, and That’s a Rotten Shame

“The Clintons have no shame, that much you can count on. That stupefying arrogance was on full display in the most recent presidential campaign debate when Hillary Clinton countered Bernie Sanders’ charge that she was compromised by her close ties to Goldman Sachs and other rapacious Wall Street interests with the retort:

Sen. Sanders, you’re the only one on this stage that voted to deregulate the financial markets in 2000, … to make the SEC and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission no longer able to regulate swaps and derivatives, which were one of the main causes of the collapse in ’08.

Hillary knows that the disastrous legislation, the Commodity Futures Modernization Act (CFMA), had nothing to do with Sanders and everything to do with then-President Bill Clinton, who devoted his presidency to sucking up to Wall Street. Clinton signed this bill into law as a lame-duck president, ensuring his wife would have massive Wall Street contributions for her Senate run.”

– Robert Scheer

Bill Clinton, the man who signed off on the deregulation of Wall Street, which caused the global financial and economic devastation which began in 2007-2008, and which has not yet truly let up, wants to pretend to be a sensible and sincere supporter of the people’s interests, and not those of his Wall Street backers? My, that is rich. Excuse me whilst I run to the washroom with my vomit bag.

JTR,
January 26, 2016

http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/1/25/1474807/-Bernie-Sanders-responds-to-Bill-Clinton-Liberal-writers-policy-critique

 

The American People Have Finally Had Enough

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/1/22/1473542/-The-American-people-have-finally-had-enough

Shell-Shock: A novel by installments

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

Here is an unconventional move. I am considering publishing a novel by installments. This has been done in the past, but is not the current norm. But I am not sure if it has been done while the novel is still in the process of being written. That would be a bold, and perhaps risky move.

What if the writing flounders? What if there is writer’s block? What if I want to re-write what I’ve written, re-work scenes, characters, story lines? All very risky to publish it while in vitro, so to speak.

But, on the other hand, considering the state of the world, the urgency of the times, and moreover, the rapid unfolding of current trends, if I wait until the novel is finished, proof-read, reviewed, edited, etc, before releasing it to the world, events could have passed it by, and what might have been prophetic, or at least prescient, becomes, or at least appears to be, mere reflective hindsight. Most importantly, perhaps, is that foresight is more valuable than hindsight, and the people should be warned, as well as inspired and rallied to action.

So, I am thinking about it. I will not promise at this point to continue to publish installments before the novel is completed, although I am seriously considering it; but I will start with offering a prologue, by way of introduction.

(And if there is interest, please feel free to send contributions or donations, because this writer, like most, has an income that does not exactly amount to that of Donald Trump – nor one ten-thousandth of it. But that is an aside, and unimportant.)

I hope you enjoy what you read. More importantly, I hope it sparks thought, discussion, and above all, action.

Peace,
Todd

***

Shell-Shock

The Transitional Time:

Between the End and the Beginning,
Lies the Time of Transitions

Prologue:

The History of the Collapse of Modern Civilization

 

We could say that there were many factors which led to the final collapse, and of course, there were many factors. But in the end, the chain of events which spiraled into this terrible culmination, and the collapse of modern civilization, could be said to have begun with this tipping point.

For a number of identifiable reasons, most of them identified by thoughtful observers well in advance, the global economy had become extremely unstable. (A crisis of over-production, combined with deregulation, the financialization of the economy, globalization, the off-shoring of production and profits, the evisceration and liquidation of the middle class, soaring inequality, and a kleptocratic billionaire class, were, of course, the central factors – as is now universally recognized, in hindsight.) But however one views the causes, when the collapse of the global economy finally came, a global depression hit the world like a tsunami, and things began to fall apart.

The result was chaos, panic, devastation, widespread suffering, fear, mistrust, paranoia, the further retreat into narcissistic, bunkered self-isolation and alienation, escapism, voyeurism and magical thinking, along with blame, hatred, the inflaming of old animosities, conflicts and hostilities, hunger, even greater soaring poverty and inequality, frustrations reaching a boiling point, and very quickly, riots in the streets, looting, and ultimately, in short order, revolution in the streets.

But the problem was not revolution, nor even a wave of popular revolutions springing up across the planet. The problem was a lack of resolve.

When revolution broke out, rebellion, or even dissent against a corrupt and unjust, ecologically suicidal order became viewed by the ruling elite as treason, and the crackdown began. The hounds and the goons were unleashed, and fascism arrived, in full-fledged form. Not the old fascism of goose-stepping soldiers wearing Nazi uniforms, but the new fascism, draped in the robes of smiling civility, virtue and nobility, or so it aimed to clothe itself, and parading as the salvation of freedom and democracy – both of which, of course, it was intent upon destroying.

The predictable backlash to the popular revolutions, and the repression and fascism which followed, was not the real problem. The problem was that the people buckled and submitted – at precisely the critical time when they needed to be their most bold, and unshakable.

The newly secured global corporate elite, with their henchmen firmly in control, now pushed back every advance that had been made by the people over the previous 200 years – and further, the past 800 years, since the birth of constitutional law and the Magna Carta.

It was a new feudal age, and a new and more brutal age of empire than the world had ever seen. All motion for positive social change was halted in its tracks, including all efforts at ending our assault on nature, and halting our full speed drive towards our own extinction.

Now, business was firmly in the driver’s seat, as it had been for a long time, but with a posse of goons and a fascist architecture to support it, to make sure no one got in the way of profits.

The business elite made a killing, both literally and figuratively, and the business of killing the planet was simply an externality, and an unfortunate consequence which could not be helped. The race to extinction, or at least to the collapse of human civilization, was on, and it would not take much time at the newly accelerated pace.

The eventual outcome, which came very quickly, and with frightening speed, was not only the death of the oceans, but also, and more critically for humanity, the collapse of agriculture and world food systems.

As crop failure, famine, hunger and starvation swept the planet, two other horsemen appeared: death and disease. War, or the intensification and spread of the already well-established pattern of permanent war, followed swiftly behind.

Between the sickness and mass deaths caused by famine, disease and war, the cogs and the infrastructure, the supply lines and networks of industrial civilization began to sputter, to seize, and finally, to collapse.

The fascist coup of the corporate elite had done this, we could say. But that, really, if we are to be honest with ourselves, would be to miss the point, and to pass the blame. The people failed themselves, because they caved in, when they should have stood firm.

The spirit of great hearts and great courage, such as the spirit of Gandhi or Martin Luther King Jr., should have, and could have guided them, and led them to victory. But it was the spirit of fear that won out in the end. And the rest, as they say, is history.

The people thought they had problems before. Now, with the collapse, their problems really began. At least in the short term, the meek did not inherit the earth. They inherited a wasteland. Now, the best, and the worst of humanity, became vividly clear.

Blessed be the gadflies

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

Metaphorically speaking, and only with regard to issues of the greatest importance, I wholeheartedly agree:

“When confronting your enemy, go for the jugular, and never back down.”
– Alexander Cockburn
(A journalist with a rare quality – a spine)

Alexander Cockburn: born in Scotland, raised in Ireland – of course he was a scrapper. And I love him for it.

He reminds me of my greatest literary hero, Henry David Thoreau.

“I sometimes despair of getting anything accomplished by the help of my fellow men. Their minds would first have to be placed in a kind of powerful vice, to squeeze their old ideas out of them.”

Ferocious, honest, and also true.

Blessed be the gadflies. Jesus forgot to mention that one, but I think it was implied.

JTR,
January 26, 2016

Confronting Evil: Not with a bang, but a whimper? Neither, I say

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

Yes, it is best to be cordial, courteous, friendly and respectful, and to avoid harsh words and harsh speech, generally speaking. But when it comes to confronting power, when it comes to addressing the power elite and their willing vassals, servants, prostitutes in high office, and other shills, we must be fierce, and uncompromising – particularly when lives are at stake; or worse, when, as at present, the future of humanity and all life on earth is at stake, and the rulers and their peons are actively destroying, not only the quality of life for the great majority, but even the possibility of the continuation of life at all.

Then, the gloves must come off, and we use language as a weapon, as well as a means of informing, inspiring and uplifting.

Sometimes, evil must simply be defeated, and while I would not go so far as to say, “by any means necessary,” I would say that there are times for dispensing with civilities, and driving a stake through the heart of the lies and illusions which surround and enchain us – or we will never be free, and our future will be bleak.

If we need any further encouragement to stand up and speak out — and with passion and boldness, and not mousy obedience, meekness or timidity — I would say that Henry David Thoreau’s, On Civil Disobedience, Etienne de la Boite’s, The Discourse On Voluntary Servitude, Erich Fromm’s, Escape From Freedom, and the writings and speeches of Mahatma Gandhi and the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., should top the list of essential works to read or re-read for inspiration. As Dr. King said, we must face the fierce urgency of now — there is such a thing, as being too late.

Stand up, and speak out – for justice, for peace, for freedom, and for a better world for all: courteously whenever possible, but ferociously when necessary.

J. Todd Ring,
January 26, 2016

Prognosis for America: Sanders or Civil War

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

I will make a prognosis for the United States. Considering the deep internal divisions in the nation, which are only growing deeper and more inflamed by the day, I see only two alternatives for America, and they are: Bernie Sanders, or civil war.

Neither Bernie Sanders nor his supporters are going to launch a civil war of course, but the divisions within this society are so stark and so extreme, and so increasingly volatile, that if a moderate progressive such as Sanders cannot unite the country and begin to heal its wounds, then, as the CIA has also predicted, civil war is not only a possibility, but an increasing probability.

Let us hope the former option, the Bernie option, the more sensible option, is the one chosen. Pray it is so.

“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible,
will make violent revolution inevitable.”
   – John F. Kennedy

I have written elsewhere extensively on the state of the United States, so I will leave this thought as it is – concise, and hopefully, thought-provoking. I sincerely hope that it is contemplated and considered very, very thoughtfully, and with great care. In either case, the implications are likely to be profound.

J. Todd Ring,
January 26, 2016

 

 

New Poll: Sanders Leads Clinton In Iowa

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on January 26, 2016 by jtoddring

Substance begins to overtake slime. Whoops….did I say that? I meant to say, an honest candidate who has defended and worked for the people, consistently for over 30 years, and the only candidate who is standing up to Wall Street and the corporate elite, is beginning to outpace the oligarchs’ number one draft pick and chief prostitute for hire in this round of political charades. There – that is much more polite and politically correct. Whew.

Whatever you do, do not call it like it is. That would be impolite. Euphemisms and evasion and the couching of our words are vitally necessary to society, lest some semblance of sanity, or, dare I say it, real democracy break out. Heaven forbid.

Yes, it is best to be cordial, courteous, friendly and respectful, and to avoid harsh words and harsh speech, generally speaking. But when it comes to confronting power, when it comes to addressing the power elite and their willing vassals, servants, prostitutes in high office and other shills, we must be fierce, and uncompromising – particularly when lives are at stake; or worse, when, as at present, the future of humanity and all life on earth is at stake, and the rulers and their peons are actively destroying, not only the quality of life for the great majority, but even the possibility of the continuation of life at all. Then, the gloves must come off, and we use language as a weapon, as well as a means of informing, inspiring and uplifting. Sometimes, evil simply must be defeated, and while I would not go so far as to say, “by any means necessary,” I would say that there are times for dispensing with civilities, and driving a stake through the heart of the lies and illusions which surround and enchain us – or we will never be free, and our future will be bleak.

Stand up, and speak out – for justice, for peace, for freedom, and for a better world for all: courteously whenever possible, but ferociously when necessary.

J. Todd Ring,
January 26, 2016

https://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/01/24/1474487/–NEW-POLL-Sanders-Edges-Clinton-In-IA-Leads-In-NH

 

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