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Ear to the Ground

What You Dig

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Posted on Apr 10, 2009

What do you get when you mix drugs, greed, God and a splash of Bristol Palin’s baby-daddy? The five most popular Truthdig stories from the last seven days. And they are ...

1. Chris Hedges on the Economy
Resist or Become Serfs”—If we do not immediately halt our elite’s rapacious looting of the public treasury we will be left with trillions in debts, which can never be repaid, and widespread human misery which we will be helpless to ameliorate. The stimulus and bailout plans are not about saving us. They are about saving them.

Summers

2. Robert Scheer on Summers’ Big Payoff
Living Large and in Charge”—Not surprisingly, Lawrence Summers is convinced that he deserved every penny of the $8 million that Wall Street firms paid him last year. And why shouldn’t he be cut in on the loot from the loopholes in the toxic derivatives market that he pushed into law when he was Bill Clinton’s treasury secretary?

3. The Truthdig Book Review, Edited by Steve Wasserman
Troy Jollimore on the God Debate”—Is it really true, as John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge argue in their new book, “God Is Back,” that religion and modernity cannot only coexist but actually flourish together?

Johnston and Banks

4. Truthdig on the Palin-Johnston Feud
“  ‘Tyra’ Appearance Sparks Palin-Johnston Scuffle”—What’s a former would-be-son-in-law of Sarah Palin to do once his time as an adjunct member of the family is over? Why, go on “The Tyra Banks Show” of course, as Bristol Palin’s ex, Levi Johnston, has done in an episode slated to air Monday [April 6]. This media-baiting move has clearly angered Mama Bear Palin.

5. David Sirota on the Drug War
This Is the Truth on Drugs ... Any Questions?”—Finally, after America has frittered away billions of taxpayer dollars arming Latin American death squads and incarcerating more of its own citizens on nonviolent drug charges than any other industrialized nation, the government is starting to re-evaluate federal narcotics policy.

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By cyrena, April 12, 2009 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment

By Louise, April 11 at 12:38 pm #

Resist or Become Serfs:
 
“Such good advice comes half a century too late. We are serfs! We have been serfs since Ike left. He warned us, we ignored him. We devoted lifetimes and reams of paper, covered with words of wisdom and mindless stupidity. We cheered on the building of myths and fantasies and called ourselves free. And for all our servitude, we are still as short of memory, void of wisdom and empty of ambition as we were when we all decided to pretend we were going to get rich playing the Market! Somebody played, lots of somebody’s got rich, but it wasn’t us. It was all a delusion, and we delude ourselves still.”..

Ah Louise…the usual Amen, hallelujah, or “Oh Happy Day” as one of my dear friends has a habit of uttering in some of her exclamations to such truths.

And while I mean no disrespect or malicious harm to Chris Hedges, (he is a good author and I enjoy much of his work) he does have this habit of always being a day (or several decades) late, and a dollar (or several trillion) short. 

It was happening to me for a while too, (I wasn’t paying close enough attention) but I decided that my survival was dependent on me staying real attached to real-time reality.

It hurts like hell just starting out. (like a dreaded new exercise program). But once we get into it, (The reality v the products of The Ministry of Propaganda) it’s just the only way to survive…acknowledging the reality, and way before we’re 50 years into the shit.

Anyway, Chris isn’t the only one guilty of the “day late and dollar short syndrome” but it really is time for him to catch up. I mean it’s like, how far along the WRONG path do we need to go before we figure out that we might have made a WRONG turn somewhere, and that we’re very blatantly headed in the WRONG direction (like over the proverbial cliff, except it isn’t really all that much of a euphemism any more, because we HAVE BEEN!!)

It’s like President Obama has mentioned more than a few times, “We’ve already TRIED it that/their way, and it OBVIOUSLY DIDN’T WORK!! Greenspan was wrong, and so was his mentor. Human greed, corruption, treachery and deceit all in the name of material wealth is the oldest motive in the book of human existence. There’s nothing ‘new’ about that, and there’s nothing ‘new’ about the fact that ANY unregulated system can and most probably WILL go sour and create a catastrophic disaster. That’s the whole point of the checks and balance system, which is remarkably simple and effective at the same time, IF we actually practice it as intended.

Meantime, it’s interesting to see this list of the top five digs (or things that readers and posters respond to). I was particularly impressed with the latest piece by EJ Dionne on Obama being the Extremists’ worst nightmare. Excellent piece but I’ve been too busy to respond yet.

This recovery business involves quite a bit of energy, but so far, it seems productive. wink

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By felicity, April 11, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment

Good question, Shirley.  Nor do I.  I do know that if the world would quit dumping its nuclear waste in the waters off Somalia, the pirates just might stop pirating. They’re pissed because the stuff washes up on their shore and its making them sick.  They also don’t appreciate the fact that we installed an American-toady laundry worker as their dictator-in-chief - thank you very much.

Are we ever going to recognize that for every action (that we take) there will be a reaction (that our victims take.)

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By Louise, April 11, 2009 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

Resist or Become Serfs:
   
Such good advice comes half a century too late. We are serfs! We have been serfs since Ike left. He warned us, we ignored him. We devoted lifetimes and reams of paper, covered with words of wisdom and mindless stupidity. We cheered on the building of myths and fantasies and called ourselves free. And for all our servitude, we are still as short of memory, void of wisdom and empty of ambition as we were when we all decided to pretend we were going to get rich playing the Market! Somebody played, lots of somebody’s got rich, but it wasn’t us. It was all a delusion, and we delude ourselves still.

How quickly we forget a huge hunk of that debt was created when Bush decided to be a war prez. The first president to start a war on borrowed money while giving tax breaks to the wealthy. You were there and didn’t care. Never questioned. Never stopped to think. So why should we THINK now? We can once again demonstrate how little we know, how little we care and blame Obama.

Living Large and in Charge:

There’s a great delusion in the land, that the mindless herd that wallows in it’s own shit is still in charge.

Fear is a great motivator. Lawrence Summers is a man walking in fear. Fear of the people. Fear of the government. Fear of the truth. Fear of being found to be at the center of all those who live in fear of being discovered. And most of all fear of losing that which he has gained. The greatest threat to the cattle driver is that the herd will panic and trample everyone in sight! So far, Obama has managed to maintain enough control to keep the herd from stampeding. Time enough to cull when a measure of order is restored. Meanwhile, the bulls who think they lead the herd, need to be deluded into believing they will continue to lead. Once the herd’s been safely driven to the slaughter house, the culling can begin.

The God Debate:

Dwight Baker asks,
WHO AM I
WHAT IS MY PURPOSE
AND WHERE AM I GOING

That question underlines why in spite of calling on God day and night, organized religion fails. Only when we grow up enough to teach our children (as ALL the great prophets did) the kind of self respect, self esteem and self love that focuses on the value of each and every individual life, can we hope to see that which the holier-than-thou claim to offer. Demanding a child accept the force of belief as defined by another, diminishes the sense of self! And without self respect, self esteem and self love, there can only be blind obedience. To blindly act, without an honest sense of ones own value in the larger group of valued selves, is about as unholy as one can be!

Palin-Johnston Scuffle:

The one notable about this story is that mainstreammedia thinks it’s notable! Are they really that desperate for news? Or is this simply a reflection of the dumb-downed folks with too much time on their hands and too little light in their attics to actually understand what real news is? 

We can only hope Bristol’s experience (and words) indicate she is already blessed with far more common sense than her mom. Advice to Bristol, RUN! Get the HE-double-Q away from the mom who uses her influence to jerk around people even dumber than she is!

Truth on Drugs:

(This is your government on drugs: Cirrhosis and angry tank-topped lushes beating their wives are more acceptable risks than stoners sitting in their basements ineptly playing Halo ... any questions?).
~~~

That about says it all. Thousands of people suffer horrible squashings and mangles and deaths, every year because of that “nice” guy who drinks too much beer then gets behind the wheel! While generally, the worst thing the dumb-downed dude in the basement does is stink really bad!

~~~
“Finally, a little honesty—and now, maybe, some action.”
~~~

But first! How will we convince all those “private for profit prison corporations” this is in their best interests?

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By Shirley, April 11, 2009 at 9:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I would like to know why the previous writer thinks the destroyer captain be fired. Nothing like kicking a person when they are down. These people who presume to know all the answers and how to solve every problem is disgustingly naive.

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By coloradokarl, April 11, 2009 at 7:18 am Link to this comment

Let’s give the pirates $500,000 and when they release the captain blow them into their “virgin Valhala” Our money has less value than fresh toilet paper and we can just print more. The Destroyer captain should get fired!!!

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