May 23, 2013
Graham Nash Still Really Gives a S#!*
Posted on Aug 5, 2012
By Mr. Fish
Fish: Now, what strikes me about that quote is how logical it is and how it presents pacifism and humanitarianism as the obvious choice in an equation that asks us how we want to live as a species.
GN: And it’s even true today.
Fish: Especially today—and even though it is an equation that makes incontrovertible sense, the gray-faced men are still everywhere and they’re even allowed to marry our high and half-naked and laughing daughters. How is that possible?
GN: Well, you know the Frog Theory.
Fish: What’s the Frog Theory?
GN: You put a frog in a pan of boiling water he’ll immediately jump out. You put a frog in a pan of cold water and slowly turn up the heat the frog will stay in the pan and let himself be boiled to death. You get used to it and the gray-faced dudes are so brilliantly cognizant of how to manipulate people with media and how to spend millions of dollars to, you know, make Scott Walker seem like a great guy. I mean, Citizens United? It’s fucking insane.
Fish: And Bradley Manning is the bad guy.
GN: Because [the facts] are kept out of the press.
Fish: And the only comment that [President] Obama has on the subject is that Bradley deserves to be imprisoned and tortured because “he broke the law.” Obama’s cowardice on the issue is beyond heartbreaking.
GN: Of course, no military judge is going to go against his commander in chief. Manning doesn’t stand a chance because WikiLeaks and Julian Assange cannot be allowed to win. That’s why you’ll hear very little about this trial. Nobody will report on how [the Obama administration] is railroading this guy and making sure he’s in jail for the rest of his life.
Fish: And Daniel Ellsberg is left to run around and wave the Pentagon Papers in the air, begging people to recognize the importance of whistle-blowing and nobody will pay attention.
GN: The strange thing is that the documents that Ellsberg released were really top secret. None of the documents that Manning released were top secret. Some were secret and some were “for your eyes only,” but none were top secret. But the game is different now. The new game is to kill these fucking whistle-blowers now!
Fish: So who’s to blame for the loss of our democracy? Is it the power brokers who put the whistle-blowers in jail and slander brave and truly patriotic citizens, or is it the people who are too afraid to speak in contempt of the power brokers and who willfully ignore [the propagation] of injustice? I guess what it all comes down to is learning how to develop and nurture a language of dissent. We need the language of dissent because without the language we cannot talk about a course of national action away from subjugation.
GN: And we have that language. It’s called music. Because of music, I’m allowed to talk about somebody like Bradley Manning, night after night, and how we tortured this fucker for no good reason. It’s amazing that I can get away with it.
Fish: What would you say is the percentage of people who come and see the shows who are hearing about Manning for the first time?
GN: It’s news to about 90 percent of them.
Fish: And I’m assuming that we’re talking about the true story of Bradley Manning. People probably know his name, at least.
GN: We just played a show in Wolf Trap, Virginia, just outside of Washington, D.C., and I said [to the audience], “I’m going to do a song about Bradley Manning,” and we got booed. I said, “Wait a second, you fuckers. How can you boo a song you haven’t even heard?” It was shocking to me that there are people who are so close-minded that they won’t even allow themselves to think there’s another way to look at something. Same thing happened during our 2006 tour. [Our audience] would sit through almost three hours of CSNY music and the minute we started to sing “Let’s impeach the president” they booed and walked out. I mean, what about the rest of the shit we just played and all the political stuff we just talked about and you’re pissed about just this one thing? I’d love to be able to get ahold of every fucking one of them now and ask them, “In hindsight, what do you think of [George W.] Bush now? What do you think about what he did to this country? Are you going to boo me now?”
Fish: What a hollow victory that would be, too. [It’s] like standing in the middle of doomsday and dancing around because you predicted it and the assholes didn’t.
GN: Right, you don’t want to do that. It’s like with Fukushima—no anti-nuke wants to say, “I fucking told you so!” No, fuck that. Let’s get on with trying to figure out what happened and fix it so it doesn’t happen again. Did you see the report that came out this morning? About the irradiated ocean? In two years the entire Pacific will be radiated. Where is the outrage? This is something that’s affecting our kids, that’s affecting our future, genetically. You don’t hear about it. You want to know why? Because about 83 nuclear power plants in this country are built on the same fucking design as Fukushima. There’s a tremendous weakness in our nuclear program that we can’t talk about because of the money we’d lose shutting them down. If we could save the 11 percent through conservation that nuclear power puts into our grid, we wouldn’t need nuclear power.
Fish: Unfortunately, though, everything is based on the corporate model of deliberate shortsightedness. If you can maximize your profits day by day, minute by minute, rather than year by year or decade by decade, you win day by day and minute by minute, fuck the future.
GN: That’s right.
Fish: All right, maybe we should talk about something more positive.
GN: But it is positive because we’re trying to bring awareness about certain issues. Sure, the subject is pretty negative, but the fact that we’re trying to deal with it is not.
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