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2011: A Brave New Dystopia

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Posted on Dec 27, 2010
Flickr / Ludovic Bertron (CC-BY)

By Chris Hedges

The two greatest visions of a future dystopia were George Orwell’s “1984” and Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World.” The debate, between those who watched our descent towards corporate totalitarianism, was who was right. Would we be, as Orwell wrote, dominated by a repressive surveillance and security state that used crude and violent forms of control? Or would we be, as Huxley envisioned, entranced by entertainment and spectacle, captivated by technology and seduced by profligate consumption to embrace our own oppression? It turns out Orwell and Huxley were both right. Huxley saw the first stage of our enslavement. Orwell saw the second.

We have been gradually disempowered by a corporate state that, as Huxley foresaw, seduced and manipulated us through sensual gratification, cheap mass-produced goods, boundless credit, political theater and amusement. While we were entertained, the regulations that once kept predatory corporate power in check were dismantled, the laws that once protected us were rewritten and we were impoverished. Now that credit is drying up, good jobs for the working class are gone forever and mass-produced goods are unaffordable, we find ourselves transported from “Brave New World” to “1984.” The state, crippled by massive deficits, endless war and corporate malfeasance, is sliding toward bankruptcy. It is time for Big Brother to take over from Huxley’s feelies, the orgy-porgy and the centrifugal bumble-puppy. We are moving from a society where we are skillfully manipulated by lies and illusions to one where we are overtly controlled. 

Orwell, as Neil Postman wrote, warned of a world where books were banned. Huxley, Postman noted, warned of a world where no one wanted to read books. Orwell warned of a state of permanent war and fear. Huxley warned of a culture diverted by mindless pleasure. Orwell warned of a state where every conversation and thought was monitored and dissent was brutally punished. Huxley warned of a state where a population, preoccupied by trivia and gossip, no longer cared about truth or information. Orwell saw us frightened into submission. Huxley saw us seduced into submission. But Huxley, we are discovering, was merely the prelude to Orwell. Huxley understood the process by which we would be complicit in our own enslavement. Orwell understood the enslavement. Now that the corporate coup is over, we stand naked and defenseless. We are beginning to understand, as Karl Marx knew, that unfettered and unregulated capitalism is a brutal and revolutionary force that exploits human beings and the natural world until exhaustion or collapse. 

“The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake,” Orwell wrote in “1984.”  “We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from all the oligarchies of the past, in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just round the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power.”

The political philosopher Sheldon Wolin uses the term “inverted totalitarianism” in his book “Democracy Incorporated” to describe our political system. It is a term that would make sense to Huxley. In inverted totalitarianism, the sophisticated technologies of corporate control, intimidation and mass manipulation, which far surpass those employed by previous totalitarian states, are effectively masked by the glitter, noise and abundance of a consumer society. Political participation and civil liberties are gradually surrendered. The corporation state, hiding behind the smokescreen of the public relations industry, the entertainment industry and the tawdry materialism of a consumer society, devours us from the inside out. It owes no allegiance to us or the nation. It feasts upon our carcass. 

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The corporate state does not find its expression in a demagogue or charismatic leader. It is defined by the anonymity and facelessness of the corporation. Corporations, who hire attractive spokespeople like Barack Obama, control the uses of science, technology, education and mass communication. They control the messages in movies and television. And, as in “Brave New World,” they use these tools of communication to bolster tyranny. Our systems of mass communication, as Wolin writes, “block out, eliminate whatever might introduce qualification, ambiguity, or dialogue, anything that might weaken or complicate the holistic force of their creation, to its total impression.”

The result is a monochromatic system of information. Celebrity courtiers, masquerading as journalists, experts and specialists, identify our problems and patiently explain the parameters. All those who argue outside the imposed parameters are dismissed as irrelevant cranks, extremists or members of a radical left. Prescient social critics, from Ralph Nader to Noam Chomsky, are banished. Acceptable opinions have a range of A to B. The culture, under the tutelage of these corporate courtiers, becomes, as Huxley noted, a world of cheerful conformity, as well as an endless and finally fatal optimism. We busy ourselves buying products that promise to change our lives, make us more beautiful, confident or successful as we are steadily stripped of rights, money and influence. All messages we receive through these systems of communication, whether on the nightly news or talk shows like “Oprah,” promise a brighter, happier tomorrow. And this, as Wolin points out, is “the same ideology that invites corporate executives to exaggerate profits and conceal losses, but always with a sunny face.” We have been entranced, as Wolin writes, by “continuous technological advances” that “encourage elaborate fantasies of individual prowess, eternal youthfulness, beauty through surgery, actions measured in nanoseconds: a dream-laden culture of ever-expanding control and possibility, whose denizens are prone to fantasies because the vast majority have imagination but little scientific knowledge.”


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By Alphonsus Jr., January 18, 2012 at 12:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Both Huxley’s and Orwell’s books are astoundingly prescient. But even more so, and more profound as well, is Robert Hugh Benson’s Lord of the World, published in 1907.

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By David J. Cyr, July 15, 2011 at 2:57 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE, John Best:

“No, they already won on this one.  ‘Liberal’ is dead, ‘progressive’ is under attack.  We have to get out in front in the war on words or we’ll lose.”
___________________

Whenever the depravity of (D) liberals becomes so obvious that no amount of denials can obfuscate it, liberals assume that they’ve merely got a public relations problem. Changing their labels doesn’t change what they are. It doesn’t change what they will continue to be.

Most liberals are not evil. The few liberals who possess power are consummately evil, and they are irredeemable. But the limp minded majority of liberals are clearly uneducable. They keep believing that Democrat evil will turn to good if only more evil Democrats are elected… that voting for the same old evil fucking Democrat shit on some other labeled ballot line will change that shit into gold.

Liberals haven’t lost anything. They’ve been winning from the beginning, and they’re still winning. We all get the shit they keep winning. The “progressives” are liberals who vote for Democrats, and then publicly protest… pretending to be against what they voted for.

The “Principles” of Liberal Voters:

http://chenangogreens.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=491&Itemid=1

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, July 15, 2011 at 9:52 am Link to this comment

Ardee I accidentally posted this in the wrong place…......

‘Run away’?  It’s a loaded term implying cowardice.  Stand and fight for a word, or the principles?  The two are not the same.  If you bravely stand and fight for the word, you give tactical advantage to those who continue to destroy the principle for which the word once stood.

Standing to fight for the word is like taking some arbitrary and tactically useless hill in a war.  They continue to sell ammunition, As long as you chase false flags, you lose.

No, they already won on this one.  ‘Liberal’ is dead, ‘progressive’ is under attack.  We have to get out in front in the war on words or we’ll lose.

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By Anarcissie, July 15, 2011 at 9:13 am Link to this comment

The term ‘liberal’ has been smeared in the literal sense of being spread out thickly.  It could possibly still be used if the user would take the trouble to define who or what he’s talking about.  Or at least give an example or two.

‘Progressive’ is even worse, of course.  Roosevelt (T. or F.)? LaFolette?  Mussolini?  Robert Moses?  Henry Wallace?  Harry Truman?

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, July 15, 2011 at 7:39 am Link to this comment

Cyr,
If they “develop(ed) the world’s most sustainable form of fascism”, then by definition (at least pre-neocon definition) those who did this developing would not have been liberals…they would have been faschists. 

Could ‘Liberals’ have been used as tools?  Well, that’s another story, but you brand them as being evil, as opposed to simply being too stupid to realize they were being used by evil. 

The word ‘liberal’ as you use it is nothing but a sloppy “group ad-hominem” without meaning. 

It is possible you don;t know where to direct your emotion, so you direct it at a catch-all word.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, July 15, 2011 at 7:09 am Link to this comment

“Over centuries of time, America’s enlightened liberals succeeded in developing the world’s most sustainable form of fascism. During those centuries, liberals ensured that the best possibilities would be impossible.” 
You could cite a few examples if you weren’t just flogging a dead word.

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By David J. Cyr, July 15, 2011 at 5:33 am Link to this comment

Liberals are not innocent victims of a right-wing smear campaign. Discord between the Right’s Republicans and Democrats is merely corporate party factionalism… nasty disputes over how best to get their evil done together, and which will get greater rewards for getting more of it done than the other.

It is the intelligent liberals who have best planned and implemented right-wing policies and systemic structural injustice.

Over centuries of time, America’s enlightened liberals succeeded in developing the world’s most sustainable form of fascism. During those centuries, liberals ensured that the best possibilities would be impossible. In the 21st Century, liberals MovedOn to ensure that even the good possibilities would become impossible… the ultimate triumph of their devious Art of the Possible.

From the advent of the corporate-state that resulted from the industrial warfare victory in the American Civil War, throughout our history and in this moment, the liberals’ progressives have always been a highly effective counterinsurgency force used by the corporate state to murder movements that have risen from the Left. There never were any good Democrats. There are no good Democrats. There will be no good Democrats.

A “progressive” is an uber liberal activist organizing grunt who’s (D) dedicated to ensuring that either none or the least possible change for good occurs.

The Violence of “Nonviolence” :
http://chenangogreens.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=492&Itemid=1

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By ardee, July 15, 2011 at 2:54 am Link to this comment

We must give up the word ‘Liberal’ as dead, pulverized…..people who feel compelled to beat it’s unrecognizable corpse look like crazed lunatics.

As the right wing smear campaign caused the word “liberal” to be associated with things not liberal all the former liberals decided they would now be progressives. What will they do when this word too is smeared?

If I were a liberal I would stand by that term, and proudly. I would take every opportunity to note the lies and distortions forced upon that term.

What I wouldn’t do is to run away.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, July 14, 2011 at 6:33 am Link to this comment

What you say is true, and I will add that when people intentionally obfuscate or smear words, when they stray from forming consensus, from the potential for more clarity, well, they simply show their colors. 

We must give up the word ‘Liberal’ as dead, pulverized…..people who feel compelled to beat it’s unrecognizable corpse look like crazed lunatics.

Other words will take it’s place, and we’ll see the red-eyed monsters lunge after then.

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By Anarcissie, July 14, 2011 at 5:20 am Link to this comment

Words do not have intrinsic meaning.  Some, like ‘liberal’, have become vague, so that orotund declarations as to ‘what liberals are’ can provide endless play as people talk past one another, without much thought or meaning going into it.  Enjoy, enjoy.

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By ardee, July 14, 2011 at 5:02 am Link to this comment

There are conscious liberals, and there are unconscious liberals.

The liberals who are conscious are clearly consummately evil

What can one add to such as this? A simple shake of the head, a brief thought to the absent sanity demonstrated and moving on to the next post.

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By David J. Cyr, July 13, 2011 at 7:51 am Link to this comment

There are conscious liberals, and there are unconscious liberals.

The liberals who are conscious are clearly consummately evil.

The liberals who are unconscious can’t understand what liberals actually are.

The “Principles” of Liberal Voters:

http://chenangogreens.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=491&Itemid=70

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, July 13, 2011 at 6:43 am Link to this comment

What you show is that the “...many public figures generally held to be ‘liberal’ by the mainstream media…”  are not ‘liberals’ at all.  You show the word ‘liberal’ is no longer useful, except as a slur.

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By Anarcissie, March 8, 2011 at 11:04 am Link to this comment

jackiemearound, March 7 at 5:43 pm:

‘I have yet to talk to a “liberal” who supports the Bush wars or any of the overt and covert American military/CIA presence around the world.  The liberals I know would agree with most of what Chris writes here. ...’

It depends on what you mean by ‘liberal’.  Many, many public figures generally held to be ‘liberal’ by the mainstream media have supported the wars and other imperial adventures of the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama regimes.  (Maybe I should say ‘regime’, singular, since their policies seem to be continuous.)  If you go back to World War 2 and its immediate sequel, the previous generation of liberals established the imperial stance of the United States, which resulted in numerous wars and other military operations around the world, most notably in Vietnam—twenty or thirty of them.  I suspect these are the people and the ideology that Hedges is on about.

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By ardee, March 8, 2011 at 6:28 am Link to this comment

David J. Cyr, January 14 at 1:09 pm

I trust, Mr. Cyr, that you have renewed your prescription since posting this utterly phantasmagorical view of liberals, demonstrations as recruitment drives, and the rest of what is a rather over the top demonstration of worms in your head.

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By Leefeller, March 7, 2011 at 2:40 pm Link to this comment

jackiemearound,

Interesting perspective on the wars being the diversion, I suspect most of what we see on the MSM, is a diversion, mostly as a slight of hand means to be diverting money from the pockets of the people, which the wars do very effectively.

Seems to me the diversions are designed to take eyes off the wars and real issues which should concern the people and especially, how about that new world order.FYI; My opinions are not set in stone.

Yes, the manipulations are transparent because Obama promised them to be so,....hence; plugging those Wikileaks!

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By jackiemearound, March 7, 2011 at 12:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I have yet to talk to a “liberal” who supports the Bush wars or any of the overt and covert American military/CIA presence around the world.  The liberals I know would agree with most of what Chris writes here.  I think the wars are a diversion to keep people’s attention focused away from government and corporate snooping, plundering, engineering our demise as a group, while openly stripping away our rights as the POTUS and SCOTUS have done with the Patriot Act and Campaign Finance decision with Citizen’s United. 

The Plutocratic system has made health care unattainable for many working people, therefore condemning them to a possible early death.  The credit system is making people homeless by the hundreds every day, a problem which is ignored almost utterly.  If you lose your house to bankruptcy over medical bills, you cannot rent another residence easily because landlords require a good credit rating before they will rent to you.  So middle class people do not slowly sink, they have the rug jerked out from under them and are suddenly living in their cars or with relatives.  All around me, people are living with relatives and friends and in campers and RVs. 
Once you fall that far, there is no ladder back up, because the welfare system was gutted under the Clinton Administration. 
In short, I fully expect to be identified as an “enemy” for my “Great Society” views:  that people deserve support when times are tough, that essential services and commodities should be affordable, and that all children should get a free and high quality education.  Children, single mothers, the handicapped, ill, and the elderly are not in a position to support themselves without some outside help.  Charities cannot carry this load if 70% of the population is unable to afford food, housing, and health care.  So we have wars to distract everyone from noticing these problems with wars against “enemies” that are just little people like us in different cultures.  The 1984 analogy is nothing new, hence the bumper sticker from 2005 that reads:  BUSH CHENEY 1984 printed and circulated among “Liberals” that HATE the wars and would agree with damn near everything Chris writes.

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By shakingfist, January 24, 2011 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hedges write:

“While we were entertained, the regulations that once kept predatory corporate
power in check were dismantled”

Some regulations were dismantled and others were put in place in the name of
“protecting” us. Yet as the years go on and we are sold more laws and
regulations corporate ownership becomes more concentrated and their masters
and their machinations more hidden from view. Simple observation shows that
laws like the Sherman Anti-Trust act have not protected us from runaway
corporate power. Regulations are written for the benefit of those fortunate
enough to have a hand in writing them.

Corporations represent the masters and government is their stick. It’s a
partnership that is inevitable as long as you allow yourself the fantasy that
someone else will do the job of looking out for you and your family. Less
government equals less coercion. Anything else is just state and or corporate
apologism.

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By Puzzled, January 24, 2011 at 2:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And, while we argue and shout “liberal!” “conservative!” “libertarian!” at each other, the government and corporations march on, hand in hand, merrily carrying out precisely those policies we all agree are the worst of all possible worlds.  We do not join together to say “no” because we’re too busy arguing.  I am a libertarian, and I do not mean to belittle the differences.  Yet even the most ardent liberal statist (I’m actually a left-libertarian) cannot miss the fact that, whatever you think possible in theory (I disagree) the government we have today is not protecting the poor, but the rich.  Can we at least join together to oppose obviously bad policies?

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By DB, January 24, 2011 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

While I don’t share the author’s political identity (I am a Classical Liberal), I share his sense of dread and frustration about the future.  This article is a masterpiece.  What style and diction.

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By Anarcissie, January 24, 2011 at 12:45 pm Link to this comment

In history, capitalism as we know it—institutions owned by investors with hierarchical management and an internal class system—has existed only in the presence of strong states with stable legal systems which are friendly to capitalist relations.  States are created by strong governments, and usually contain other powerful institutions.  The ambitious capitalist will, indeed, must make it his business to get along with these institutions and the people who control them.  In fact, he must become one of them.  Once in this position, he must not only avoid provoking their enmity but also seek favors from them, as others of his kind, with whom he is competing, will surely do.  This is ‘crony capitalism’.  It is an inevitable outcome of class formation.

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By TippyCanoe, January 24, 2011 at 12:01 pm Link to this comment

Mr. Hedges confuses “corporatism” for what he calls “unregulated capitalism”. True capitalism, which we do not have now, is the polar opposite of corporatism. Blaming capitalism is an erroneous scapegoat when you don’t understand the differences.

Even Michael Moore admits that fact:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwQ41Yo60og

Learning what true capitalism really is and the differences between the government/corporate collusion of corporatism(ie. what we truly have today), will go a long way in understanding the problems we face.

“We do not have free market capitalism in America; we have crony capitalism. There is a huge difference between free market capitalism that democratizes a country and makes us more efficient and prosperous and corporate crony capitalism.” ~RFK, Jr.
Source: http://www.progressive.org/mag_intv1106

Otherwise, fantastic article!

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By Joe, January 24, 2011 at 3:30 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thank goodness Chris Hedges has found the real villain-corporations and capitalism. And here I thought it was government agents grabbing my crotch in airports, bombing Pakistan, bailing out the super rich and lying about the none existent social security ‘trust fund.’ All we have to do is let government run everything and all our problems will be solved.

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By Joe Canuck, January 21, 2011 at 11:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There’s a 3rd book that’s missing. Zamyatin’s “We”. Read it and then re-write the column.
signed,
friendly, jOe canuck

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By Anarcissie, January 14, 2011 at 11:02 am Link to this comment

I haven’t seen evidence that demonstrations against the war in Vietnam or the numerous subsequent wars had any effect on the specific U.S. policies involved, although they may have troubled some officials.  (I’d like to see the evidence, because it might point the way to more effective actions.)  Or it may be the demonstrations have some long-term effect which I haven’t noticed yet.

As kenfreedomrings noted, demonstrations about one cause have served as a magnet for other causes, often causing a loss of focus and, I think, impact, and often putting off people who might otherwise participate.  Part of the problem was that the Left had generally been shut out of the mainstream media, so the demonstrations offered one of the few ways to get one’s message out to people who might be sympathetic.  With the present growth of the Internet, however, that need has been lessened, at least until the government and big corporations get it under control as they did print and radio-television media.

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By David J. Cyr, January 14, 2011 at 8:09 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (of an avatar being… a motorcycle):

“In order to believe in the power of demonstrations one must believe in the power of the people of course, as well as thinking that our system of governance can be altered for the better. Today we find far too many isolated and despairing that change is impossible. Thousands of folks in the streets are a powerful force in combating the ennui.”
____________

Oh yes. Liberals have mastered the art of combating their ennui.

Liberals combat their ennui, by happily socializing together in the streets, while they provide popular mandates that put more combat troops on the ground in more countries… and more drones in the air over more countries.

The corporate party collaborating “progressive” liberals have turned large antiwar demonstrations into recruitment drives to enlist voter support for their Democrat managed wars of aggression.

Assembling at antiwar demonstrations has been a means for liberals to get more war crimes committed in the voting booths.

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By ardee, January 14, 2011 at 6:23 am Link to this comment

However, war seems to be crucially important to the state, so in my experience demonstrating against the wars has not had much effect.  I would be interested to hear about other people’s experiences, however.

So, only demonstrate against that which the govt doesn’t mind changing? I find little sense in this suggestion. Demonstrations against the VietNam war certainly played a significant role in ending that war. Perhaps even more importantly it was a way for people to come together, form groups and work for more than the end to that particular war.

Demonstrations show people that they are not isolated and alone in their beliefs, my own association , which has lasted for well over forty years, came from meeting folks while demonstrating against the visit of South Vietnamese premier Nguyen Cao Ky in 1967. We soon gravitated away from the growing violence and managed to accomplish some rather beneficial community accomplishments.

In order to believe in the power of demonstrations one must believe in the power of the people of course, as well as thinking that our system of governance can be altered for the better. Today we find far too many isolated and despairing that change is impossible. Thousands of folks in the streets are a powerful force in combating the ennui.

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By kenfreedomrings, January 13, 2011 at 10:56 am Link to this comment

“Considering the state of Iraq today and the suffering of the Iraqi people it boggles the mind as to why more Americans do not protest. War quickly changes the order of things, Iraq sadly being the most recent testimonial to that.”


Unfortunately, when the “left” demonstrates against war, many of the peripheral issues muddy the waters. “Money used for war could be used for . . .” Pick your favorite govt. program. The anti govt. “right” and the libertarians are just as opposed to war as the left is, but they do not want to be associated with the other clutter.

If the left and the right could get together on an anti-war demonstration that focused only on war and nothing else, I believe we would see more and a broader participation.

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By David J. Cyr, January 12, 2011 at 1:28 pm Link to this comment

Yes John, the use of Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) provides satellite imagery detection of geological formations, without any ground measurements necessary… before invasions are planned.

The boots on the ground are only required to take possession of the minerals after they are found.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 12, 2011 at 12:49 pm Link to this comment

Why the change?
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/14/world/asia/14minerals.html

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By David J. Cyr, January 12, 2011 at 11:21 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (of an avatar being… a motorcycle):

“Demonstrations are, as most without a hidden agenda understand, an important tool in effecting (sic) change.
While our favorite utopian anarchist would have you believe that, because instant change of policy was not forthcoming after a demonstration, the usefulness of demonstrations is suspect. It is not.”

____________

Yes, those few of us “without a hidden agenda” do understand that the massive UFPJ demonstrations were definitely a most “important tool” for affecting “change” in the rhetoric, management, and support for war.

It did take a few election cycles for that “important tool” to provide the special effect “change” it was used to produce.

A “change” was made in labeling (from “dumb” war, to “necessary” wars).

A “change” was made in management of war (from too many boots on the ground, to far greater dependence upon robotic weaponry).

A “change” was made in support for war (with all the “intelligent” liberals flocking to support Democrats doing what they were so enraged about, when “stupid” Republicans did it).

There’s nothing “suspect” in demonstrations that “progressives” gather at to get more Democrats elected. The always having a “hidden agenda” liberals’ guilt in their war crimes has been positively proven, beyond any reasonable doubt.

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By Anarcissie, January 12, 2011 at 11:15 am Link to this comment

I gave evidence, ardee.  Give it a try.

Actually, the situation is somewhat more complicated than demonstrations work versus don’t work.  If something is being swept under the rug or misconstrued by the mainstream media, and people can get a sizable demonstration together, it may at least disturb the surface of public consciousness for awhile.  Thus I think some of the demonstrations against police violence I participated in during the Giuliani years may have made a difference locally.  They gave the lie to the notion that the public universally went along with the common police practice of harassing, beating up, torturing and killing people with low social status.  Likewise the Civil Rights marches made it impossible to say that African-Americans consented to segregation.

However, war seems to be crucially important to the state, so in my experience demonstrating against the wars has not had much effect.  I would be interested to hear about other people’s experiences, however.

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By ardee, January 12, 2011 at 8:02 am Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 12 at 5:19 am

Do not be fooled by this blatant appeal to the status quo. Demonstrations are, as most without a hidden agenda understand, an important tool in effecting change.

While our favorite utopian anarchist would have you believe that, because instant change of policy was not forthcoming after a demonstration, the usefulness of demonstrations is suspect. It is not. Get out in the streets whenever possible, make your opinions and desires known to our leaders.

Anaracissie desires only that her belief in the intractability and rigid position of our government become as fact. She seeks to keep you passive so that her silly dream of no government can become a reality. Do not be fooled.

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By Anarcissie, January 12, 2011 at 12:19 am Link to this comment

Most people think political demonstrations are boring, unpleasant and stupid.  They participate in them because they think the demonstrations will accomplish something.  When nothing appears to result from them, they naturally become discouraged about demonstrating.  A good example was the massive demonstration against G. W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq—half a million people in New York City alone.  Evidently the war was too important to the ruling class to forgo.

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By elisalouisa, January 11, 2011 at 10:28 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, Jan 22 2:15 am To my knowledge, many citizens, including myself, protest/have protested because they wish to let it be known that they are not with the powers that be concerning certain actions. That is primary. Considering the state of Iraq today and the suffering of the Iraqi people it boggles the mind as to why more Americans do not protest. War quickly changes the order of things, Iraq sadly being the most recent testimonial to that.

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By Anarcissie, January 10, 2011 at 9:23 pm Link to this comment

elisalouisa—I think it’s true that an overt attempt to change the order of things by main force, military, electoral or financial, would simply be brushed out of the way.  However, real change usually starts small and comes in from the margins, under the radar.  Because it’s new and different, it doesn’t have to directly contest the things our great and mighty leaders care about to move along.  So I think there’s some hope in local agitprop and organizing.

I’m not objecting to people voting or demonstrating, but I don’t think they’re going to get what they’re looking for that way.

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By Anarcissie, January 10, 2011 at 9:15 pm Link to this comment

Yes, ardee, it’s always the other person that has the problem.  Fine with me—see you around.

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By ardee, January 10, 2011 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 10 at 4:46 pm

It becomes apparent that you either intentionally seek to distort what I said or you have an attention deficit disorder. I have posted your own words, even emboldened the offensive distortion of my original words, and you then imply that those words were mine…Honesty is apparently in short supply. I will now keep my word and post no further on this, being unwilling to descend into the sty with you.

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By elisalouisa, January 10, 2011 at 7:44 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 10 at 6:11 pm
“So how is this system, structured around class and coercive violence, to be reformed, and into what?  I suggest rather doing away with it by withdrawing our support for it and by replacing it with noncoercive institutions created and cultivated from the ground up.”

This “system” has gone global; having complete military support. Our withdrawal would accomplish little. Those now in control would not voluntarily relinquish their power; rather there would be more force used to maintain the status quo. Change I suspect requires the destruction of what now is which would make a new beginning possible. At some future date Homo sapiens might be more altruistically inclined and power seeking individuals sadistic in nature would be a thing of the past. Anarchy might then stand a chance; the link below provides numerous forms to choose from.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarchism

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By Anarcissie, January 10, 2011 at 1:11 pm Link to this comment

elisalouisa, January 9 at 9:48 pm:

‘ardee, January 9 at 12:46 pm

You continue to raise the spectre of sociopathy and attempt to link it to the word government. I continue to hold that government is subject to the human factor and in need of reforming not discarding. Nowhere do I see, in your calls for
an ending to government, any speculation as to how one guards our society, indeed our world, from the BP’s, Enron’s, Halliburtons etc. that have been shown to be the actual sociopaths here ( though I hesitate to ascribe humanity to a corporate entity, a step in the wrong direction taken long ago).Nor do you discuss those aforementioned safety nets and what is to become of them in the absence of govt?

Interesting points worthy of a rational response.’

There appear to be two arguments here:  One is that government is good because it suppresses bad behavior on the part of corporations (and, I assume, wicked individuals) and second because it provides a ‘safety net’.

As to the second argument, the replacement of government by other non-coercive institutions which would perform some of the same functions is discussed in Anarchist Praxis, a short article for which I’ve given the URL in Truthdig discussions several times.

In regard to corporations, our analysis of the problem should begin with noticing that traditional corporations such as BP and Halliburton would not exist without the positive, ongoing support of government.  Does this need to be explained?  Moreover, like government, they require a class system consisting of owners, managers and employees, just as a government requires a class system of great leaders, bureaucrats, cops, and subjects.  As class is a coercive and authoritarian social mechanism, the same sort of people tend to rise to positions of power in both institutions and to have a great deal in common: wealth, power, interests, culture.  (The same is true of other major institutions in a state, such as Academia and the large religious organizations.)  In fact, they often turn out to be the same people.  It is true that struggles sometimes break out within or between these state institutions, but by and large they get along, and this is why BP and Halliburton can do their thing unhindered most of the time.  In fact, far from being hindered, they are made possible and promoted by government.

So how is this system, structured around class and coercive violence, to be reformed, and into what?  I suggest rather doing away with it by withdrawing our support for it and by replacing it with noncoercive institutions created and cultivated from the ground up.

Alternatively we can keep running the present system until it blows up in some social or ecological catastrophe, as it seems destined to do.

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By Anarcissie, January 10, 2011 at 11:46 am Link to this comment

ardee—Here is what you quoted.

In any case, if one believes the only proper function of government is the suppression of sociopathy, that is, that government should consist of only a very restrained police department and possibly a militia, then one is taking a fairly extreme libertarian position, which does not seem to accord with some of the other things you’ve been saying.

Now, let’s simply it a little:

... if one believes the only proper function of government is X, then one is taking a ... libertarian position, which does not seem to accord with some of the other things you’ve been saying.

Or even simpler,

if X then Y; but Y does not seem to be true in your case.

If X implies Y, and Y is not true, then X is not true.  In short, all I have said about your beliefs is that you don’t seem to be an extreme libertarian.

As we can see,

(1)  I have not put any words whatever in your mouth.

(2)  I believe my statement about your political beliefs is true, but I acknowledge that I could be wrong.  (If so, you should correct me.)

I don’t know if I can break this down any further.

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By ardee, January 10, 2011 at 7:02 am Link to this comment

It seems that this conversation has reached its tipping point with your refusal to consider my question and, instead, denying what is right there in print. I post the sentence in question yet again to show that wriggling from an ill chosen phrase, or worse, an attempt to intentionally distort my position, is not a part of honest debate:

Anarcissie
In any case, if one believes the only proper function of government is the suppression of sociopathy, that is, that government should consist of only a very restrained police department and possibly a militia, then one is taking a fairly extreme libertarian position, which does not seem to accord with some of the other things you’ve been saying.

Thus the tricky and rather shallow attempt to put ideas in my mouth that did not originate there. Shame on you. “Other things Ive been saying” did not include that which you attempt to put upon me…again shame on you.

I wonder why you refuse to answer the most obvious question; what follows the absence of government? Perhaps we might consider just ending this here as I’ve no wish to see this degenerate further. I confess to being rather disappointed however. I expected intellectual honesty.

I leave the field to your last words, if any, whether honest or not is entirely up to you.

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By Anarcissie, January 9, 2011 at 10:11 pm Link to this comment

ardee, January 9 at 9:56 pm:

‘Anarcissie:
“ardee—I am not trying to distort your ideas.”

Yet that is what you have done, and I cited a specific example of such in my previous post.

The call for the disbanding of a (violent) government has never come with any suggestion, despite my requests for some, as to what comes next. For example,how does one ensure that BP doesn’t take even more shortcuts to increase profitability and completely sterilize the Gulf of Mexico next time?’

In looking over what I’ve written in this discussion, I don’t see any passage, quoted or cited, in which I state what your ideas are, except where I say that they don’t seem to fall into the extreme libertarian position.  You disagree with that?

I’ve written quite a bit about what comes next, and what comes before, but if no one reads it, as you indicate you have not, then there was no point in my writing it the first time, and there is certainly no point in my writing it again.

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By ardee, January 9, 2011 at 4:56 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie, January 9 at 5:04 pm Link to this comment

ardee—I am not trying to distort your ideas.

Yet that is what you have done, and I cited a specific example of such in my previous post.

The call for the disbanding of a (violent) government has never come with any suggestion, despite my requests for some, as to what comes next. For example,how does one ensure that BP doesn’t take even more shortcuts to increase profitability and completely sterilize the Gulf of Mexico next time?

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By elisalouisa, January 9, 2011 at 4:48 pm Link to this comment

ardee, January 9 at 12:46 pm

You continue to raise the spectre of sociopathy and attempt to link it to the word government. I continue to hold that government is subject to the human factor and in need of reforming not discarding. Nowhere do I see, in your calls for
an ending to government, any speculation as to how one guards our society, indeed our world, from the BP’s, Enron’s, Halliburtons etc. that have been shown to be the actual sociopaths here ( though I hesitate to ascribe humanity to a
corporate entity, a step in the wrong direction taken long ago).Nor do you discuss those aforementioned safety nets and what is to become of them in the absence of govt?

Interesting points worthy of a rational response. 

Posters and readers may or may not agree as to what “petty squabbling” is and also who is or is not pontificating in “hip theoretical ways” or otherwise.

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 9, 2011 at 12:50 pm Link to this comment

I suppose most of us are familiar with some large subset of the details of the socio-economic history of the 2008 banking crisis.  Here is a movie that provides a nice recap of many of the salient points.
http://www.sonyclassics.com/insidejob/
http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/inside_job_2010/

With respect to the movie, I say that in any society, any political system, any community large or small, there is some form of currency to represent tangible wealth, or obligations and to carry it about and through time.  It can be a simple promise, an understanding, gold, precious stones, seashells, etc.  Any currency requires faith.  Any proposed system of cooperation or governance which does not offer some means of moderating the forces that would abuse and misuse this faith is worth consideration.  Ours is presently very badly broken in several ways. 

And in general, with respect to collections of so-called ‘activists’ as one would find in forums such as this, I say there are many hip theoretical ways to pontificate, and while there are a sizable number of those who cling to laissez faire dreams, I suggest that we all step back and try to be objective on occasion.  There are far too many of us and we are living in a way that puts tremendous strain on the planet and each other.  Petty squabbling is a waste of time, and time is the enemy.

Anarcisse made one strong point I can get behind: moving money out of big banks, and beginning to migrate toward some improved system.  I assume that does not exclude the option of also shutting down the most abusive wielders of CW by government means if/when it becomes possible.

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By Anarcissie, January 9, 2011 at 12:04 pm Link to this comment

ardee—I am not trying to distort your ideas.  I just don’t agree with them.  I’ve pointed out some areas of disagreement and given reasons for my views.  That’s about all that’s going on here, as far as I’m concerned.

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By ardee, January 9, 2011 at 7:46 am Link to this comment

You may narrow your terms as you wish, of course, but first you must define those terms or conversation becomes impossible. I see Capitalism in a much broader sense than do you, apparently. I do not blame the shopkeeper obviously for the ills that large corporate interests have delivered to our door by corrupting the purpose of government. You continue to try and link government to those ills, I think, rather than consider that reforming govt. may be the only useful solution to reining in the destructive nature of big business interests, interests that are trapped in a cycle of the need for ever more profit..

I look to find common ground, especially with those posters who demonstrate a willingness to put ego aside and speak to their own ideas with clarity and calm demeanor, thus it saddens me to find an attempt (hopefully accidental) to distort my ideas of the role of govt..

I cannot help but note that your words:

In any case, if one believes the only proper function of government is the suppression of sociopathy, that is, that government should consist of only a very restrained police department and possibly a militia, then one is taking a fairly extreme libertarian position, which does not seem to accord with some of the other things you’ve been saying.  Such a government could have nothing to say to corporations or anyone else, as long as their relationships were voluntary, however foolish or offensive they might be.

seem to ignore my position in favor of making your own point yet again. My statements that government is necessary to regulate was in response to your opinion ( and Ms. Wakfir’s as well) that government was responsible for the corruption one finds in our large corporate entities. It was in no way a limiting of the responsibility and role of government, nor was it as simplistic as your words imply.

My ideal government exists , not only to regulate the business interests that have usurped the power of the people, but to provide safety nets for the needy, as well as the obvious functions i.e. trade and treaty, defense et al.

You continue to raise the spectre of sociopathy and attempt to link it to the word government. I continue to hold that government is subject to the human factor and in need of reforming not discarding. Nowhere do I see, in your calls for an ending to government, any speculation as to how one guards our society, indeed our world, from the BP’s, Enron’s, Halliburtons etc. that have been shown to be the actual sociopaths here ( though I hesitate to ascribe humanity to a corporate entity, a step in the wrong direction taken long ago).Nor do you discuss those aforementioned safety nets and what is to become of them in the absence of govt?

I apologize if my words are insufficient to convey my meaning, but I think your misunderstanding of them a glaring error and a bar to communication. Nowhere did I define the function of government in so narrow a term as you ascribe to me, nowhere did I agree with your opinion that govt represents only control in the form of bullying either. You stand alone in that.

Though I took the pains to cite the words of our Founders in my reply, and included this as well : “I may be a cockeyed optimist, but I am pessimistic enough to know that societies of people need governments, need laws, need the structure in which such groups can flourish. I reject, out of hand, your contention that governments exist only to exercise violent controls over societies, however often that has proven to be the case.” You still implied that I spoke to a limited function thereof and that being one of violence and suppression, I did not.

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By Anarcissie, January 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm Link to this comment

ardee—When I use the word ‘capitalism’, I’m referring to business carried on by joint-stock corporations chartered by a government (or some other entity with similar functions).  The owners can be entirely different from the managers and the laborers.  This abstraction or alienation of ownership permits capitalist organizations to be pyramided to indefinitely large size.  It also requires that labor become an exploitable and commodified resource.  If we say that any business carried on privately for profit is capitalism, then communes, cooperatives, partnerships, and self-employed persons are also capitalism; in fact, there is very little that is not capitalism.  I don’t think this is a very useful definition.

The argument that government is necessary because human beings are or may be evil falls afoul of the obvious paradox that any government will be made up of these same fallible human beings.

In any case, if one believes the only proper function of government is the suppression of sociopathy, that is, that government should consist of only a very restrained police department and possibly a militia, then one is taking a fairly extreme libertarian position, which does not seem to accord with some of the other things you’ve been saying.  Such a government could have nothing to say to corporations or anyone else, as long as their relationships were voluntary, however foolish or offensive they might be.

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By ardee, January 8, 2011 at 5:04 pm Link to this comment

Anarcissie

Historically, we don’t observe capitalism (as we know it) occurring until the appearance of relatively large, relatively stable states.  I take it we agree that at present capitalist corporations, other state institutions, and the government are inextricably mixed and interrelated.

Your defining of the type of Capitalism that appears in supposed synchronicity with the appearance of states is missing in this paragraph. Do you then imply that, prior to nations there was no capitalism? Methinks this definition is paper thin. If one assumes capitalism to be a business transaction involving product and profit I doubt mankind awaited the establishment of states to do such. ...and yes I do agree with you that Capitalism ( the large C kind) has found its profit center in the control of governments. It is this I seek to end, not government itself. If the body is diseased one cures that disease, you suggest euthanasia….

I would appreciate your understanding the particular disagreement we have here, namely; that statements such as this, of yours:

The connection between property and violence necessitates the state, a permanent social organization of coercion whose purpose is to regulate social relationships, especially those of property, and whose fundamental tool is violence (war, police power, surveillance, secrecy and so on).  In accepting the idea of property as permanent, we accept violence, and therefore the state, and its necessary concomitants, class and war, as permanent parts of our lives and those of our social order.

is one that I cannot accept. As Ms. Wakfir insisted upon in another thread, and you do such here, I rise to refuse that government is hopeless and any attempts at governance doomed to fail. I accept fully that ,as so aptly noted in The Federalist Paper # 51,

“But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on govt would be necessary. In framing a govt. which is to be administered by men over men, the greatest difficulty lies in this; you must first enable the govt to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.”

Our Founders, chiefly Madison, Hamilton and Jefferson, all recognized and stated plainly and on numerous occasions that large business interests were anathema to a government concerned with governing all citizens fairly, and current events prove them prescient indeed.

But it is a far cry from such warnings, and from the need to regulate and control the greed inherent in large C Capitalism, to your contention that government itself is the problem. My real problem with those who call for an abolition of government is that they unwittingly are seeking to bring into existence a world in which Capitalism, freed from its bonds of regulation, becomes the monster it now threatens.

I may be a cockeyed optimist, but I am pessimistic enough to know that societies of people need governments, need laws, need the structure in which such groups can flourish. I reject, out of hand, your contention that governments exist only to exercise violent controls over societies, however often that has proven to be the case.

Men may not be angels, but that doesn’t mean we cannot govern with justice. If governments are an invention of man then your presumption that they cannot be anything but violent condemns mankind itself. If that is the case, then whats the use? We fail, we try again, only by refusing to try do we ultimately fail.

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By David J. Cyr, January 7, 2011 at 10:08 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“By making clever ideological hiding places for people, you isolate them from a spot in the political process where they might do some good.  You will eventually make them ineffectual cynics like yourself.”
____________

I identify some BIG lies behind which many millions hide their actual devious function. I don’t hide the Democrats who won’t do good when they can. I expose them.

“The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.”
— George Bernard Shaw

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 7, 2011 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment

David Cyr…..... 

All you do is tear down and look for places to put in a wedge. 

By making clever ideological hiding places for people, you isolate them from a spot in the political process where they might do some good.  You will eventually make them ineffectual cynics like yourself. 

But as a cynic, you may only be a poser, because your only proposed solutions do not differentiate you from the legions of dedicated right wing ideologues.  If it smells like a dog turd…....it might as well be one.  Scraping my shoe.

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By Anarcissie, January 7, 2011 at 1:20 pm Link to this comment

ardee—You can find so-called anarcho-capitalists (on the Net, anyway) such as David Friedman, who believe that some sort of capitalism could exist absent a state.  However, the institutions which they usually posit to replace the state functions which support capitalism look exactly like a state to me.  Historically, we don’t observe capitalism (as we know it) occurring until the appearance of relatively large, relatively stable states.  I take it we agree that at present capitalist corporations, other state institutions, and the government are inextricably mixed and interrelated.

John Best—If you want to do some reading of various critical views of the present system of intellectual property, I recommend starting with QuestionCopyright.org, whose participants are generally more attuned to arguing within the liberal framework, and for reform as well as abolition, than I am.  For me, the sequestration and propertization of culture by means of state coercion is an absurdity on its face, so I have a hard time establishing a common ground with liberals in this area.

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By ardee, January 7, 2011 at 6:40 am Link to this comment

“Corporations and the government are not distinct.  They are intimately connected parts of a single system.”

An interesting conjecture, Anarcissie, and one I would expect an anarchist to make. I, not being one of those, do not make the connection, sorry.

If you mean that ,currently, our corporate entities are entirely too entangled in the process of government I would agree. If you mean that giving corporations the status of personhood was a very bad idea, I also agree. If you mean that government and capitalism are always found together, as siamese twins, that one is impossible without the other, well, cant follow you there.

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By David J. Cyr, January 7, 2011 at 12:56 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“I’ve personally, with my own hands, (not relying on any right wing service people who put down education), removed the oil burning system in my house, installed a 94% efficient gas system, replaced asphalt roof with a ‘green’ metal roof, insulated, (all fiberglass, no urea or styrofoam compounds), and I’ve never, ever thrown away one tiniest bit of organic material.  I could go on and on, but you get the idea.  I’m a lot less evil than most people can claim.”
____________

“It’s a way we had over here for living with ourselves. We cut ‘em in half with a machine gun and give ‘em a Band-Aid. It was a lie. And the more I saw them, the more I hated lies.”
— Capt. Willard’s narration in Apocalypse Now (1979)... after the Sampan Massacre

That’s a metaphor for how liberals live with themselves. They think that reducing their personal carbon footprint can wipe away the war crimes they commit whenever they vote for their falsely advertised to be “lesser evil” Democrats.

Every vote for any corporate (R) & (D) party candidate is a criminal act. It’s a vote in support of perpetual war; a vote against any peace and against all justice.

That’s fact… not theory.

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 6, 2011 at 8:31 pm Link to this comment

IP…...cite the good cases where it protects someones hard work and risk.  Some small inventors mortgage their house to get one so they can keep their work from being stolen.  Everything can be improved, but abolished no way.

I read the links.  I’ve read other viewpoints and supporting data from other disciplines.  I thank you for the references. 

On human nature, you did not understand my opinion, which is that there are few intrinsically good or bad people.  This good-vs.-evil view doesn;t account for very amny observable behaviors.  People can be quite good, and the exact same people can be quite evil withing a few minutes, and certainly as a result of various external

or perceived threat, or perceived scarcity.  You, under certain conditions would be as horrible as any, so would I, if any of us think ourselves immune, we should not run for office. 

I simply say power corrupts, and some people, based a little on their nature, but more on their background, are corrupted to a nastier state thanare other people, but we are all corruptable.  Envision your perfect system, one far better than ours, I would predict that unless certain ‘coersions’ for lack of a better term, or laws, or customs, yes, let’s just say ‘customs’.  Unless certain customs are in place specifically to address the ‘power corruptts’ aspect of our makeup, indeed it would end up as bad or worse than ours. 

Most of the articles on anarchy do presume a lot of logical behavior.  At least rational behavior in ones own self interest.  So do certain Libertarian philosophies.  Some serious flaws are: People are only rational at times, People can be scared into irrationality, People may do what’s poerceived as in their short term interest, but is contrary to the long term interest of themselves or the group.  In none of the articles I’ve read has there been a really sound or more accurate, realistic, explanation of how the problem of the commons is handled.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tragedy_of_the_commons  Yes, they attempt to solve it by accepting private property rights, I don’t believe there won’t be all manner of thievery.  Too hard to resist.  How do you start off with people who are willing to work and trade fairly for everything they own?  All it takes is for one to be more efficient at accumulating, and poof: jealousy.  There’s a thousand ways paradise is lost.

But, you’re convinced, so we disagree.  There’s nothing new necessary.  Thanks.  Good Luck.  To bad you can’t help within the current system, we need thinking people desperately.

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By Anarcissie, January 6, 2011 at 7:28 pm Link to this comment

John Best—You don’t seem to be able to get away from your fixation on the evil that dwells within the hearts of men, and how it requires that they be governed.  Nor can you answer my objection that this governing will be performed by the same evil people.  Actually, you probably couldn’t have a worse opinion of human nature than I do.  Your argument against anarchism is my argument for it.  Regardless, perhaps we could just agree to disagree on the matter, unless you have something new to bring to it; more cycles seem unnecessary.

As to my suggestions I didn’t realize I was supposed to be giving a list of specific, concrete items you could run out and start doing immediately.  I don’t actually have a one-size-fits-all program handy—I would need to know more about your specific situation.  Maybe I should start a Dear Abby column for would-be activists? 

As to IP laws, many people besides anarchists think they require reform or abolition.  I got an amusing note in the mail this morning about the latest absurdity:


SAN FRANCISCO (KGO)—Lawyers for a famous artist have sent a letter to a San Francisco store owner, demanding he stop selling a bookend in the shape of a balloon dog.

Park Life on Clement Street in the Richmond District received the letter just before Christmas. Artist Jeff Koons created a giant shiny balloon dog, which was shown at Versailles and museums in New York.

The legal action raises an interesting question.  Can you copyright an image of something that’s seen and used in many different ways?

“Party clowns make balloon dogs for kids at parties. Do they have to stop making balloon dogs?” asked Park Life co-owner Derek Song. 

If the vacuous con artist Jeff Koons has his way, I guess they do.  They’d better stop having anyone sing ‘Happy Birthday’ as well—it’s copyrighted.

The purpose of IP laws is not to create cheaper products; it is to create scarcity and monopoly, that is, to further rent-seeking.  They’re also useful for political repression.  I could give some URLs on the subject, but you don’t seem to have been very interested in the ones I already gave, so I will spare the electrons.

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 6, 2011 at 5:22 pm Link to this comment

Reading…..Stirnerite egoism held that whatever a man has the might to do, he has the right to do.  yuk. 

Anarcisse, I read a bit at http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/bcaplan/anarfaq.htm#part10  the first few paragraphs, 3 and 4, under section 10, anarcho-capatalism, are horrifyingly scary in that people might somehow believe this would magically just work itself out.  In reality, you poor folk are going to get gunned down and carried away by the security forces of the rich.  Look, as a stand alone ‘way to be’, this is pie-in-the-sky bullshit.  The weak, meek, and poor would suffer orders of magnitude greater than if the ideas you presented were simply carried out within our existing system. 

Your list of things to do is a bit vague, except for the ‘withdraw your money and put it in credit unions’, but unfortunately, some credit unions invest in the same investments as banks.  Not sure that one’s going to accomplish much, but it might indeed bring these mega banks down to size.  The big Wall St firms do keep getting the money to control though.  I think this idea, with specific criteria as to the sort of charter the credit union would operate under.  Invest locally, etc.  But what happens when some member of the hypothetical credit union tries not to pay their loan back?  Coersion.  Eventually, you’ll end up re-inventing the wheel. 

Anyway, since David has not yet posted anything too specific, and your suggestions for non-evil are not something I can run right out and do, I think I’ll run right out and dump my future compost in a trench I dug along the garden to receive it this winter.  Hey, this is a start…...something concrete people can do to make the world a little better…....get away from monoculture-globalized-agribusiness.  That’s right, grow your own vegtables, save money, avoid cancer and let lazy people eat that oil derived crap the big corporate farms are processing.

Something else they can do is stop spending so much time on the internet and learn how to fix and make things your self.  Reusing things is green.  New stuff is now designed for planned obsolescence and will wear out to fill landfills, meanwhile wasting enormous amounts of energy and raw materials.  It is nearly always better to fix something, and then it gets some character. 

By the way, if there were no IP laws, the amount of bad stuff, like genetically modified crops and cheaply manufactured things would skyrocket.  Basically, a lot of IP has at it’s core the goal of making things cheaper, not necessarily better, and cheaper to grow, with the effect of making biological diversity less viable.  I don’t get the issue with IP and anarchy.  It’s not as if under an anarchical system there would be the specialization of manufacturing to actually make half of the stuff covered by IP anyway. 

As far as being evil by association with the present system, it’s sounding very much like one has to submit to the green doctrine or be evil.  Hell, I can get that treatment in any evangelical church.  I’ve personally, with my own hands, (not relying on any right wing service people who put down education),  removed the oil burning system in my house, installed a 94% efficient gas system, replaced asphalt roof with a ‘green’ metal roof, insulated, (all fiberglass, no urea or styrofoam compounds), and I’ve never, ever thrown away one tiniest bit of organic material.  I could go on and on, but you get the idea.  I’m a lot less evil than most people can claim.  And, my wife cooks from pure basic ingredients. 

This talk about tearing down our system shows lack of either broader knowledge or experience.  Our system, despite enormous problems, has much good.  While some waste our time criticizing and promoting the theoretical, the good parts of the system are being eroded and bad parts are being added.  It is one-half because people are too lazy to work our system to do good that it is left to do evil.

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By Anarcissie, January 6, 2011 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

John Best, January 6 at 6:49 pm:

‘David and anarchisse,
David: So you don’t really have a strong suggestion of what one should necessarily do?  You gave ‘Vote green’ a pretty iffy endorsement as the best single action to take.

Anarcissie….you win.  Anarchy is better than what we have.  Oh, anarchy is what we do have.  Corporate might makes right.  ...’

No; as to capitalism and anarchism, see my recent posting here.  We certainly don’t have anarchy now, in any case.  For more on anarchy and anarchism, I recommend the Wikipedia article and Bryan Caplan’s FAQ, to which the Wikipedia article links.

As to what is to be done, what I try to do and recommend to others is the creation and cultivation of non-violent, non-coercive relations and institutions.  For instance, we can try to replace traditional corporations with cooperatives.  We can try to handle social problems by fixing them before they require forcible repression.  We can try to refuse our support for war and empire and encourage others to do so.  We can take our money out of traditional banks and put it in credit unions; if enough people were interested, we could in fact create a real monetary system based on labor, rather than the phony system of money we now have created by force and mystification.  We can resist the attempt to sequester and privatize our common culture through hypertrophied intellectual property laws.  None of these are utopian or other-worldly; in fact, people are doing them right now, thousands of them, maybe hundreds of thousands.  If we are fortunate they will reach a point of critical mass.  In any case there is plenty to do; you don’t have to resign yourself to evil.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 6, 2011 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment

David and anarchisse,
David: So you don’t really have a strong suggestion of what one should necessarily do?  You gave ‘Vote green’ a pretty iffy endorsement as the best single action to take. 

Anarcissie….you win.  Anarchy is better than what we have.  Oh, anarchy is what we do have.  Corporate might makes right. 

I don’t even buy all this blanket anti-corporate crap as presented.  There are evil CEO’s who run things poorly, and there are ones who would be decent, but are caught between the jaws of pleasing boards/stockholders and the necessity to at the very least survive against competition that might be nasty and have advantages like slave labor.  But, the unspecific anti-corporate rhetoric doesn’t allow any corporation, even one with green intentions to relax and make jobs.  So, I wonder just how bad the problem of emphasis has made the anti-corporate image self-fulfilling.  If I saw a bunch of politically active people gunning for a company I’d built, I think I’d take defensive measures…...perhaps by buying a senator if I could afford it.

In any event, I digress badly anarcissie.  I didn’t mean to have an ad-hominum angle of attack.  Rather I sincerely think I understand about how anarchy might look, and though ego-centric, it seems to me that surely anyone, seeing abnormal psychologies, struggles for basic resources, the law of the jungle, etc, etc, must be the only sort who could envision anarchy as an acceptable possibility.  But apparently you are convinced, so I withdraw.

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By kenfreedomrings, January 6, 2011 at 1:15 pm Link to this comment

“When you vote in support of the corporate party, the small weight of your one vote is added to the massive mindless pile of all those complicit in all the crimes of the corporate state. By voting for any Republican or Democrat you make a free-will choice to yourself be a war criminal.”


Excepting Ron Paul, of course, who has never voted for war, and always speaks against it. And moreover, and more importantly has tried his whole political life to get the main enabler of US war, the Federal Reserve to be abolished. He might not accomplish that, but it is going to be very interesting as he heads the House subcommittee on monetary policy as he holds Bernanke’s feet to the fire.

I do, to a great degree, agree with your analysis on corporate power although I presume my solution is 180 degrees from yours.

btw, libertarians, myself included also predicted accurately that Obama would be (is) a corporate fascist stooge.

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By David J. Cyr, January 6, 2011 at 1:11 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (myself):

“Her sentencing appeal was reviewed after the nice “progressive” Democrat Obama was corporate party installed… and her political imprisonment sentencing was then **INCREASED** to 10 years (that’s 336 months).”
______________

I think it’s worth explaining how my “human error” occurred there… because it illustrates how an apparent error can possibly be more correct than an accurate result.

My careers (and avocation too) have fundamentally been involved with the reduction or minimization of human errors; and, in not being a child purposefully systematically left behind by No Child Left Behind, I don’t require a calculator to obtain the 120 product of 10 x 12.

I saw it on the send, and realized then that when I converted Stewart’s new 10 year sentence to the months unit used in her original somewhat less medieval sentence — an arithmetic operation that doesn’t require me to think — I was then, during that operation, thinking of the subjective effect that a 10 year prison sentence has. In effect, if the prison sentence is survived, it is actually much more like loosing 30 years of your life than 10. Prisons don’t merely deprive people of abstract time. They also deprive the prisoner of all the material quality; deprive them of all that’s substantial to be gained in that time.

Lynne Stewart was 71, and suffering from age related health problems, when (for purpose of persecution) she was most HEAVY handedly re-sentenced in July, 2010.

That increase to a 10 year sentence for her is likely to be a life sentence… a sentence imposed with the corporate state’s intent for her to die in prison.

When calculating prison time, 10 y times 12 m can equal an eternity of months.

The corporate state has bountifully rewarded those who have committed the most monstrous crimes (crimes Obama considers too big to prosecute), while it persecutes Lynne Stewart… because the freed presence of her goodness and courage is intolerable to those dedicated to servicing Evil.

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By Anarcissie, January 6, 2011 at 1:01 pm Link to this comment

John Best, January 6 at 2:33 am:

‘... Shouldn’t everybody see and know what their fellow human beings are like? ...’

You must admit there is a certain humor in recommending prison as a model of human society—to an anarchist!  I might be a Gnostic as well, for whom the physical universe is a system of prisons and human political arrangements no more than a reflection of the iniquities of the Demiurge.

However, humor or not, I am tediously duty-bound to point out that you committed yourself to a pair of well-worn fallacies.  The first was the ad hominem that my thoughts were invalid because I lacked experience.  For all you know, I am a senior gang-banger already in prison after a desperate life in the slums with several murders under my belt.  I don’t mind ad hominems if they’re relevant, but that one has nothing to do with the subject under discussion.  More seriously, the go-see-a-prison argument rehashes a previous argument of yours which I had already dealt with pretty conclusively, at least as far as it went.  I suppose you could improve it.  Can you, then, try to get the ball back over the net?

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By David J. Cyr, January 6, 2011 at 10:40 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“So, if I reduce your proposal of ‘what you would have us do’, to one phrase, it would be ‘vote green’?  Is that what you would have us do?”
_____________

That’s something worth considering, but it’s not necessary… and it’s also not always a good thing to do.

If non-corporate candidates don’t have truly significant (system threatening) support, then voting can’t achieve any good purpose, so not voting is also an option for people who have good intentions. If no natural person participates in a corporate state’s election that’s a really good result… a real win for natural persons.

I’ve always respected those who hold the position that non-participation in activities designed to induce immoral participation is their morally correct path.

The thing that’s important to realize about voting is that all the good deeds a person might do for others in their daily life, and all the positive intentioned marching for peace & justice that they might have participated in cannot counter the enormous negative effect of that person voting for the corporate party’s candidates. When you vote in support of the corporate party, the small weight of your one vote is added to the massive mindless pile of all those complicit in all the crimes of the corporate state. By voting for any Republican or Democrat you make a free-will choice to yourself be a war criminal.

The primary purpose for elections here, within a corporate state, is to offer an opportunity for weak minded and weak willed acquiescent natural persons to provide popular mandates for the corporate evils that corporations have already decided will be done. Those free-willing to be accomplices collaborating in all the corporate state’s crimes are allowed to indicate their (R) or (D) preference for how they wish those crimes to be committed: hot-bloodedly by Republicans, or cold-bloodedly by Democrats.

A person can’t be good until they stop being evil.

NOTE: A candidate listed on the ballot as GREEN isn’t necessarily worthy of an affirmative vote. Devious Democrats have gotten themselves on ballot as Green, and the Green Party is near terminally infected with disease-ridden unreconstructed liberals.

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By Leefeller, January 6, 2011 at 10:18 am Link to this comment

Voting is really a placebo designed to appease the ignorant teeming masses,..... cynic me!  Lobbyists run the halls of congress like buzzards on a bloating copse, .....cynic me!
Corporations are people too!...... yep still me!

Damn down to my last bottle of expensive Tequila, I may have to sell the family heirloom shopping cart and even rent out our home under the bridge, but then maybe I should run for congress,.... the pay ain’t bad and the medical insurance may keep my liver working forever, like those obnoxious senators.

What war?

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 6, 2011 at 8:47 am Link to this comment

Dear David J. Cyr,
So, if I reduce your proposal of ‘what you would have us do’, to one phrase, it would be ‘vote green’?  Is that what you would have us do?

Yes, assume I am sick of being a do-gooder, volunteering, donating money, coaching, setting up science fairs, coaching soccer, serving on school board, organizing money raising events for local ambulance, fire fighters, churches, etc?  Suppose I’m sick of it, but I want to do the least tiny bit I can to move the world in a decent direction….....I should vote green?

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By David J. Cyr, January 6, 2011 at 12:13 am Link to this comment

Closing Statement by David J. Cyr (Stand-in for both McKinney and Nader)
10/29/2008 Presidential Debate, at SUNY-Delhi

CLOSING STATEMENT

There are sane and responsible solutions for our problems, if we have the will to be sane and responsible, but we can’t do good until we stop doing evil.

The Likeness of JFK:

Obama has been likened to John F. Kennedy. I remember Kennedy, and yes, Obama reminds me too of Kennedy. But, in these United States of Amnesia, there are very few who remember exactly what was hidden behind that handsome face, that celebrity appeal. JFK founded the School of Americas*, an international university for the teaching of state sponsored terror, to spread repression throughout the Central & South Americas we’ve raped. Kennedy launched a systematic, relentless campaign of torture and murder of upon third-world peoples seeking self-determination and democracy within there homelands. That vilest of institutions is still functioning today, as it has throughout every administration since JFK founded it. Obama will not close it down. McKinney or Nader would… as anyone not wholly consumed by evil would. And when Kennedy lied, between 3 and 6 million Southeast Asians died… from history’s most massive use of chemical weapons upon, and the saturation bombing of, civilian populations. The estimates of the number murdered are so uncertain because the carnage was so complete. Kennedy was a war criminal.

Obama has more servilely pandered to AIPAC than any other ever has, and he has promised to make the world’s largest military larger; to spend more money on it, and to wage what he refers to as real war.

In recent years, the fascism this nation has visited upon others for so long has gone out of fashion. It’s become unpopular… giving hope that we might become a better nation, a better people. My fear is that the American Idol candidate Obama, much like Kennedy, will make fascism fashionable again.

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By David J. Cyr, January 6, 2011 at 12:12 am Link to this comment

Opening Statement by David J. Cyr (Stand-in for both McKinney and Nader)
10/29/2008 Presidential Debate, at SUNY-Delhi

OPENING STATEMENT

The Green Party of the United States is not the only one. There are Green Partys in 80 countries, sharing the common understanding that war is not the answer. War is the enemy of all solutions for social justice, and of the survival of our species.

Do we live in a democracy?

The Republican and Democratic parties are merged as one… the one party of the Corporate State. The party that keeps democracy from happening.

In a democracy all candidates would be both allowed and encouraged to participate in debates. Presidential candidates wouldn’t only be represented in mock debates, like this one. They would all be in all the debates that are televised, for all the nation to see… for all the world to see.

In a democracy, the winning of elections would not be determined by Money, as they are here. Elections would be determined by the voters free and fearless deliberation over the merits of ideas, all having equal access. In a democracy, the currency of elections would be ideas… not money.

In a democracy votes would be more valued than they are here. They wouldn’t be tossed into a machine to become easily manipulated electronic bits. Votes would be on paper ballots that would be hand counted carefully, respectfully and transparently, in the open, by people, with anyone wishing to witness the counting being allowed to do so.

Original Sin:

The original sins of this nation were genocide and slavery. We carry on in the commission of those sins still today; in our abuse of technological superiority to militarily subjugate others unfortunate to live poor where resources are rich, and in our economic hegemony, which enslaves labor across the globe, while calling it a “free” market. It’s neither free, nor fair.

The Corporate State is A Cancer:

A metastasizing cancer is a parasitic organism, which seeks ever more unsustainable growth, to short-term profit itself at the expense of its host, with absolutely no concern for the long-term welfare of its host. It eventually kills its human host… and in doing so mindlessly kills itself too.

Likewise, the Corporate State, the collection of metastasizing corporations which own the government that controls us, also seeks ever more unsustainable growth, to short-term profit itself at our expense, with absolutely no concern for our long-term welfare. If not stopped, within a century — this century — possibly even within a few decades, the Corporate State will kill us all. It is doing that now just as mindlessly as cancer kills its host.

The policies of the Corporate State are inherently sociopathic, unsustainable… and self-destructive.

It’s Over… No Need to Count the Votes:

This election is over. Voters aren’t needed. The permanent government of the Corporate State has already chosen its next face (next mask behind which it will hide). That’s public record, in the FEC filings of corporate campaign contributions… 67% to Obama… the corporate lackey.

Obama provides the illusion of change… without any change being there.

None at all.

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By David J. Cyr, January 6, 2011 at 12:10 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“What’s your agenda?  I’d like to see a third party movement that is serious enough to get inside big chunks of the Democratic party, or stand alone.  WTF would you have us do?”
_____________

My Agenda?
Expose liberals for what they are: Any liberals who aren’t consummately evil are dumber that cows. None of them can breathe without lying… even when they try not to. Liberals wrecked elections — made them incapable of serving the useful nonviolent means of addressing social injustices they could have and should have been. Protest voting for unelectable non-corporate candidates is the only good reason to vote… the only way I’ve ever voted. Any candidate “electable” in a corporate state’s election is a candidate not worthy of any good person’s vote.

Third Party?
The world’s people don’t need America to have a political party that doesn’t intend to be the 2nd party needed to militantly aggressively oppose the one corporate (R) & (D) party. We’ll know when the real deal has come, if ever, because when it does elections will then be illegal.

Democratic Party?
That’s an illusion. It’s not an actual political party. It’s a faction within the corporate party… the Black-shirt faction that provides the “best & brightest” deceits… the faction tasked with murdering movements from the Left. The Brown-shirt Republican faction deals with any unruly not as ignorant as they look white trash.

Get inside big chunks of the Democratic Party (sic)???
People can’t change the Democrat faction of the corporate party. It was created to co-opt any and every good person who ever enters it. You don’t change it. It changes you. You can’t make any part of a completely evil thing good.

What to do?
The first step is to stop being a free-will complicit accomplice in the crimes of the corporate state. Never support any Democrat ever again… no matter what devious (Working Family, etc.) ballot line they might appear upon.

For the Record, I’ll post my prepared opening and closing statements that I made in a debate before the 2008 election.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 5, 2011 at 10:12 pm Link to this comment

I admit it, yes, I voted for the SOB.  And it made me a little sick, but McCain-Palin?  Why do you think I’m hoping some third party gets serious.  Are you telling me you had some crystal ball and saw how bad the situation is ahead of everybody else?  Good for you, but now there are more folks like me out there and all you can do is offend.  You’re special, know that? 

What makes you call e a ‘liberal’?  And WTF do you mean by that?  a classical liberal? a social liberal?  a rush limbaugh liberal?  Do you give a damn or do you just want to throw shit?  I came into this forum to learn and perhaps do something.  What’s your agenda?  I’d like to see a third party movement that is serious enough to get inside big chunks of the Democratic party, or stand alone.  WTF would you have us do?

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By David J. Cyr, January 5, 2011 at 9:43 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“You think I’m OK with Stewart and DeChristopher?  I got kicked off the Obama site during the primaries for raising hell about his stand on FISA and his Patriot Act support.  That jerk is a damn manchurian candidate…”
____________

But you still voted for that thing — that creature — didn’t you?

Obama **IS** what a **REAL** Democrat is.

Liberals have run out of excuses. Your lies have no place to hide.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 5, 2011 at 9:33 pm Link to this comment

Shouldn’t everybody see and know what their fellow human beings are like?  So what if Anarcisse maintains anonymity?  that doesn’t make him/her a hothouse orchid.  Seems quite able to handle his/herself, and if not, who the hell appointed you as judge of what is appropriate to see and know? 

You think I’m OK with Stewart and DeChristopher?  I got kicked off the Obama site during the primaries for raising hell about his stand on FISA and his Patriot Act support.  That jerk is a damn manchurian candidate and I wish to hell someone would do a good investigation of his movements/contacts from his Harvard years through community organizer, etc and figure out where/how/when he was recruited. 

As for your last suggestion…......who cares.

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By David J. Cyr, January 5, 2011 at 8:31 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“Let me ask you this…..do you have any sense of humor at all?”
_____________

Yes, but I don’t find any humor in suggestions that any person’s political opinions merit their getting to “see the crap side of humanity soon… in a serious prison”... especially when directed toward someone so weak and frightened that they need to hide themself within an avatar.

For 2010 Attorney General of New York, I wrote-in voted for the political prisoner Lynne Stewart.

When the nasty Republican Bush was Commander-In-Chief, for the Long War **OF** Terror, Stewart was sentenced to 28 months (that’s 2 years and 4 months). Her sentencing appeal was reviewed after the nice “progressive” Democrat Obama was corporate party installed… and her political imprisonment sentencing was then **INCREASED** to 10 years (that’s 336 months).

Her crime? She boldly provided legal representation to a defendant that “normal” attorney’s either feared to, or simply would not represent.

Obama’s Department of “Justice” has successfully argued that no leniency be given by the court for Tim DeChristopher, for his minor infraction of law having prevented a major environmental crime. The Obama DoJ is aggressively prosecuting DeChristopher. He’s facing 10 years for doing a good deed.

Fuck all you liberals… and your “friendly” fashionable fascism too!

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 5, 2011 at 5:07 pm Link to this comment

David Cyr,
Did you not understand that I meant Anarchisse should observe the full spectrum of personalities in order to understand anarchy?  What? Did you suggest I would send poor little anachisse to the pokey?  Of course not.  Perhaps she might just talk to a cop about the personality of a gang leader.  It’s just that we live such insulated comfortable lives, some of us might have a euphemistic view of how anarchy might go.  Then again, perhaps it’s just a lifestyle, a cool radical, rebellious way top be without much real thought given.  Too many of us don’t have any appreciation for how easy life in the US is. 

Let me ask you this…..do you have any sense of humor at all?  There is some rule of ‘net etiquette that proclaims that whomever calls the other a Nazi loses the argument.  (<:

Anyway, Anarchisse…...any time a tiny band of people living out in the rain forest has a set of rules they agree on…....that’s a government.  I part ways with you in peace.

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 2:46 pm Link to this comment

David J. Cyr, January 5 at 5:58 pm:

‘... How very retrograde NATIONAL Socialist of John Best to suggest that a fear filled anarchist hiding within an avatar, who may not have The Solution, but is not part of The Problem, should “spend some time in a serious prison.”’

Come now, I doubt very much that John Best is a National Socialist, and if you’re not part of the solution you’re part of ... the precipitate.

It is indeed a curious fantasy, however.  I think it’s another case of people being accustomed to viewing the world upside down.  One learns not about anarchy in prison, but the state, which is one of the places it achieves its purest form.

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 2:16 pm Link to this comment

John Best—Cooperation is not government.  If you don’t understand that, I don’t know how we can talk about anything.

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By David J. Cyr, January 5, 2011 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (John Best):

“That is all the anarchists can accomplish…...to empower oligarchists.”
____________

Well, that’s an effortless task.

The oligachs empower themselves… and all the (R)s and (D)s regularly provide popular vote approval.

The liberals and conservatives unitedly protect and preserve oligarchy.

How very retrograde NATIONAL Socialist of John Best to suggest that a fear filled anarchist hiding within an avatar, who may not have The Solution, but is not part of The Problem, should “spend some time in a serious prison.”

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 5, 2011 at 12:37 pm Link to this comment

Reply to Anarcissie, comment of January 5 at 3:47.
I don’t promote anything, except figuring out how to make our current system less sociopathic, if that’s what you’d prefer to call it. 

Remain unconvinced…..find, but imagine a scenario where we had 1000 times the sociopathy and no rules.  The strongest, most brutal, those with the fewest morals have the advantage from the start.  That is not my vision of 1775.  Imagine though true anarchy.  As an excercize, really imagine exactly which oppresive instruments of our government you’d say ‘poof, bye” to.  Pick and choose at random, and imagine how our natural opportunism…....the force that let us survive in the wild ages ago….....our hunting skills, our killing skills, would manifest themselves. 

Forget anything agrarian…..that takes cooperation, i.e. government, and in the simplest government there is coersion.  10,000 years ago, you would be happy to have our government cooerce me into growing my own crops instead of doing the efficient thing….stealing yours.  Look at all the parts of our system, the economy, the various regulatory systems, police, commerce, etc, and they all are present as soon as we stop being hunter-gatherers. 

So, if you really know what anarchy is like, go back to a hunter-gatherer time, except the big predator tribes will have some nasty modern tools at their disposal.

So, yes, I believe we can trim down our government, without much suffering, that’s a beauty of it.  But empowering the unknowing Oligarchists is a repeat of some very foul times in history.  That is all the anarchists can accomplish…...to empower oligarchists. 

You seem pretty smart Anarchisse, but you have to be living in a bubble.  I hope you get to see the crap side of humanity soon, so you can adjust where you direct your energy.  Spend some time in a serious prison perhaps.

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 11:53 am Link to this comment

kenfreedomrings, January 5 at 4:15 pm:

‘I think it is fairly safe to say that those of you who fail to see that the free marketplace would regulate corporations (assuming they would even exist in a free market—they would not, since a corporation is a creature of the state) much better than govt. does, have never owned or run a small business. ...’

I don’t think you can extrapolate from small business to large corporations.  A corporation of sufficient size can alter its environment, including the markets it enters, in ways small businesses can’t.  For example, you mention repute, upon which a small business depends; large corporations create their own repute with massive propaganda campaigns, known as ‘advertising’.  Large enough businesses also generally strive to create monopolies or oligopolies, which is far beyond the means of any small business.  Of course, government regulation of large corporations generally fails for similar reasons—just as they can control or influence the market and public opinion, so they can control or influence the government.

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By kenfreedomrings, January 5, 2011 at 11:15 am Link to this comment

I think it is fairly safe to say that those of you who fail to see that the free marketplace would regulate corporations (assuming they would even exist in a free market—they would not, since a corporation is a creature of the state) much better than govt. does, have never owned or run a small business.

Those of us who have, understand that the market, even as imperfect as it is today, disciplines business to such an extent that in order to survive, let alone prosper, one must offer what the customer wants, in the most efficient, honest, and cost effective manner. To not do so spells doom in the market place because of competition.

Let me explain how wonderfully market regulation works in my industry—the trades. I own a small residential painting business. Last year, during a downturn which was the worst in my 35 business year history, I discovered an Internet based company, Service Magic. They are a referral service for the trades, and a regulatory reporting company for consumers. I pay for every referral I get, instead of paying the Yellow Pages or the local newspaper whether I get a referral or not. In order to be affiliated with Service Magic, I and my company goes through a background check. So prospective customers can be assured that they are safe with me in their home when I perform work for them. And after the job is over, they can rate and comment on my job, which is posted on the Service Magic website.

Let me tell, you, I do everything possible to keep that perfect 5 star rating on that website.

This is just one example of how market regulation works so much better than govt. regulation.

With govt. regulation, you have the typical revolving door scenario so that the regulators are the previous corporate officials and vice versa. Regulations generally are written to help the big guys because they are the ones who have influence on the legislators. Paying off regulators becomes a common business practice, especially in more corrupt areas such as Chicago. And the incentives to do a good job are skewed in govt. If you don’t do a good job as a bureaucrat/regulator, then you just ask the legislators to increase your budget. If you did a good and efficient job, your budget would go down. No bureaucrat wants that.

With market regulation, if you don’t do a good job, you go out of business. Or if there is a just a hint of corruption, your reputation as a regulator is gone, and you are out of business.

I believe progressives have seen so much corruption under or current system, with the corporations having inordinate power, that they just equate crony capitalism, with true free market capitalism. Those of us who are advocating true free market capitalism completely differentiate from that.

Govt. gives corporations the power they have. We can argue whether or not they are one and the same, but that is really a side issue.

If corporations were subject to true competition, their influence would wane. Monopolization fails in a free market because a would-be competitor would always offer a product or service for less.

We free marketers look at this problem from an entirely different prism than progressives do. We believe, and I think reality demonstrates that freedom works and is right. Coercion, regulatory control and oppressive taxation breeds a zero sum game where there are winners and losers. Freedom promotes positive sum games (such as my Service Magic example) where every one wins.

I urge progressives to try to look at economics the way they perceive foreign policy. Force is evil and destructive—not only in the foreign policy realm, but also in the everyday interchange of personal economic activity.

Economic relations between consenting adults should not be infringed.

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 11:11 am Link to this comment

ardee, January 5 at 11:57 am:

‘... The thrust of your remarks, Ms. Wakfer, seem to go to great lengths to avoid the essential point; our corporations, when unregulated whether by govt incompetence or by the ownership of said govt. by those very corporations, commit grave and terrible crimes. ...’

Corporations and the government are not distinct.  They are intimately connected parts of a single system.

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By Anarcissie, January 5, 2011 at 10:47 am Link to this comment

<blockquote>
John Best, January 5 at 1:55 pm:

‘From Anarcissie, January 4 at 9:47 pm
“The problem with coercion for me is that I do not wish to be coerced.”

If you want to be free to enjoy your property rights, or your personal freedoms, who’s going to deter those who would steal, rape and kill?  We form governments for that.  They ‘coerce’ not only lawbreakers, but those who have to pay for govt services. ...’

I am unpersuaded that institutionalizing sociopathy at the center of our social order is the best way to deal with it.  I’ve already given a lot of evidence, observable by anybody, that it isn’t.  I’ll note also that government and the state which it produces far, far exceed the mere restraint of violent crime.  (Those violent crimes, that is, which the government and the state do not themselves commit, which are protected and enhanced.)

Going by what you write, you don’t seem to be some kind of extreme libertarian-minarchist, so I don’t know why you’re presenting the minimal state anyway.  If you’re going to justify government, I think you ought to justify the government you promote.

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By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 5, 2011 at 8:55 am Link to this comment

From Anarcissie, January 4 at 9:47 pm
“The problem with coercion for me is that I do not wish to be coerced.”

If you want to be free to enjoy your property rights, or your personal freedoms, who’s going to deter those who would steal, rape and kill?  We form governments for that.  They ‘coerce’ not only lawbreakers, but those who have to pay for govt services.  Me and you.

Our ‘better of evils’ form of govt, in a less corrupted state, should provide the least amount of coercion possible, one hopes.  As it is drifting, as Hedges suggests, toward a far less citizen focused form, it might get much more coercive, as Orwell suggests.

I don’t want to be coerced either, but as long as the coercion is fair and equal, and minimized, then I accept it.  Hobbs I think, or Locke? Ardee is very right about ‘fixing’ the thing.  Our government has been hijacked, not that it was ever so perfect in the past, but it’s really like an old ship in disrepair.  Those who would abandon and sink it really don’t realize just how far they’d have to swim and how many sharks are out there.

I agree with keeping government fit and trim, especially relative to our means to support it, but in the process, let’s not empower those who would chop off the rudder, keel and mast?

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By ardee, January 5, 2011 at 6:57 am Link to this comment

Kitty Antonik Wakfer, January 4 at 12:59 am

So many words, so few ideas.

The thrust of your remarks, Ms. Wakfer, seem to go to great lengths to avoid the essential point; our corporations, when unregulated whether by govt incompetence or by the ownership of said govt. by those very corporations, commit grave and terrible crimes. I do not, I think, need to link to any of them, especially as so many are still fresh in our minds.

Yet, despite the newspaper headlines, you seek to have us believe that all our currently rapacious, greedy and amoral corporations will suddenly, in the absence of government, reform, see the light, and cast away endless profit in a new found sense of civic responsibility.

Yet your solution to this obvious truism is to kill govt and allow complete freedom to those proven to need more, not less, regulation. When one has something in need of repair one should really consider fixing it rather than throwing it away with nothing available to replace it.

Some here wish to replace democracy with socialism, an idea I have no quarrel with but see a rather long struggle to both re-educate the people about that much maligned form of governance and in achieving said goal.  You provide a veritable torrent of words yet provide nothing I can equate to this reality or to the problem at hand.

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By Anarcissie, January 4, 2011 at 11:36 pm Link to this comment

Kitty Antonik Wakfer, January 5 at 2:23 am:

‘... Some here have raised the issue of fear about letting their true identities be known by those reading this website (and presumably elsewhere) because of potential or actual written threats of harm. My reaction and reply is: do you want to be like the dog running away with its tail between its legs when someone/thing makes a loud noise? ...’

I do as I please, which contrary to your prediction, makes me quite happy.  If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life that’s done me any good, it’s to ignore people’s unbidden and uninformed evaluations of my person and behavior.  Although I confess that several years ago I collected a rather amusing list of epithets which I arranged in alphabetical order and used to send around to people who seem to have run dry.  I think ‘frightened dog’ may already be on it, along with ‘scairdy cat’, ‘coward’, etc. etc. etc.  Some of course are not so polite and will not bear publication in a family website like this.

My advice in regard to noms de guerre is this: if you don’t like ‘em, don’t read their material.  I think Truthdig has some kind of kill function that makes people like me invisible—if so, use it!

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By TAO Walker, January 4, 2011 at 10:39 pm Link to this comment

So Kitty Wakfer Antonik just doesn’t want to “go-there.”  Anybody who has read the linked-materials, and other things at their website, probably won’t be all that surprised at her evasiveness.  The philosophy presented there is only one of several complex thought-systems whose inventors are offering them by-way-of comments posted on this site….sometimes with a variety of for-purchase “products” along for the ride.

Nothing wrong with that, of course, but the Wakfers’ particular brand of panacea has, in-common with at-least a couple others of their ilk here, a singular reluctance on the part of the “thinkers” to respond to some basic questions about the ‘place’ in their system of the entirety of our Living Arrangement NOT made-up of domesticated “individuals.”  The preservation and satisfaction of the sacred “self” turns-out to be a prominent feature of these CONstructs.

This Old Indian is pretty clear about the DEAD END that road takes everybody who stays on it.

HokaHey!

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By TAO Walker, January 4, 2011 at 5:47 pm Link to this comment

Kitty Wakfer Antonik’s expressed unwillingness below to “discuss” here assertions and matters she chose to raise here, however cleverly rational-ized, might be a breach of the very “social contract” she and Paul Wakfer profess to hold in such high regard (as can be sensibly inferred from the materials she most recently linked-to).  In-fact, it also appears, based on the ‘hoops’ a Person is required to jump-through in order to contact them directly, that they are motivated to no small degree by a desire to exercise considerable control over what gets brought-up in their own forum, which is nowhere near as “welcome”-ing. as Ms. Wakfer suggests. 

Among this Old Man’s People it isn’t polite to bring-up something in any kind of “public” way, then try to take further “discussion” of it completely “private,” or out-of the social context in which it was raised, anywhow.  It does appear from their own words, though, that both Wakfers are convinced, for the present, that what they have to say to the rest of us is a good deal more “valuable” than what their “selfs” might hear from other Persons.

Meantime, sort-of to see how much “courage” they have of their own stated convictions, this Old Indian is hereby reporting that the entire “self”-IDentified “American” populace, including the Wakfers their own “selfs,” are “continuing to Possess Stolen Property”(see Paul Wakfer’s essay @ the link provided by his wife)....namely, the actual physical territory of Turtle Island, and all the material “goods” derived from its exploitation by their own “selfs” and those of their fella ‘n’ gal “individual”-ized occupiers.  What does their ‘value-for-value’ philosophical ethic require of them (“inividual”-ly and as a mated pair) to make-right this “violation,” and do they intend to do so (within, of course, the limits of their own “individual” status as receivers and possessors of stolen goods)?

Finally, again, what “value” do they return to the actual Living Arrangement here (including its non-Earth-ly constituents like the Sun) from which every material aspect, at-least, of their “happiness” must be obtained by one means or another?

HokaHey!

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By lew glendenning, January 4, 2011 at 5:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is completely wrong, a standard “Progressive” explanation of why the standard Progressive prescription of “elect the right people, give them power” has so definitively failed.

Progressives produced this problem by giving the gov power.  The political process is the auction mechanism for gov power.

Money buys power.  Always has, always will.  Exceptions are, perhaps, in early revolutionary times where the gov is still dominated by True Believers, but none of us want to live through that.

The people who wrote the US Constitution understood all of this very well—they were engineers and scientists who had done failure analyses of government and understood that govs were made up of fallible humans.

If you don’t want corporations to control the government and the government’s power of the gun, then don’t give the government power in the first place.  The idea that gov can regulate business has failed everywhere, every regulatory body is turned into a protection against competition for the ‘regulatees’.

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By Anarcissie, January 4, 2011 at 5:12 pm Link to this comment

In regard to ‘lackeys’ I was mostly thinking of the more ardent lackeys.  Most of us, those who are not leading sociopaths or on the bottom of the social order—or locked up—are lackeys of one sort or another.  I myself have often submitted to government or corporate work which at most levels is pure lackeydom.  Most of the time, at least, I knew what it was.  However, there are people who are really good at it.  There was recently an article in this publication about the recently departed Richard Holbrooke, for example.  But de mortuis....  Perhaps, if we had a typeface for irony, we could write ‘public servant’.

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By Anarcissie, January 4, 2011 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

John Best, January 4 at 6:36 pm:

... I agree that Government is coercive.  But, if it coerces, coaxes, convinces people to do their fair share, that’s one thing.  If it forces, imprisons, tortures, intimidates people into doing what is not fair, that’s another matter altogether. ...

The problem with coercion for me is that I do not wish to be coerced.

More generally, humans, like other animals, are willful, and as such desire to work their wills.  They soon find that their powers are limited, both by the laws of logic and physics and by the social matrix in which they are embedded.  They now have to decide whether to conquer the world, submit to the world, or work out a deal with the world.  There are several deals.  One is the state: one agrees to combine with others in a general system of coercion, hoping to find a tolerable place on the pyramid so that one’s rewards exceed the cost of one’s submission.  Since the fundamental building blocks of the state are necessarily violence and fraud, sociopaths gravitate to its upper reaches, and the whole structure is permeated with their mentality.  Hence the constant breaking-out of war and crime even in the most ideal states.

Alternatively, one can engage in social relationships and institutions which are voluntary and non-coercive.  Indeed, many of these exist already.  Most productive and constructive activities take place within them; the state is like a parasite on them, and if they ceased to function, the state would collapse immediately.

My political intention is to expand the area of non-coercion.  I do this by encouraging people to withdraw their energy and commitment from the state, and to apply it elsewhere.

It’s not merely a question of niceness.  It is pretty obvious that the state has failed as a viable social order.  As science, engineering, and the accumulation of wealth make more and more power available to humans, they are faced with the real possibility of self-annihilation if they continue to play the same stupid, savage games they have grown used to.

As the Book of Changes advises:  ‘Waiting in blood.  Get out of the pit.’

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By Leefeller, January 4, 2011 at 2:05 pm Link to this comment

Kitty Antonik Wakfer:

‘... I am not anonymous and urge others not to hide behind pseudonyms. ...’

If my name was “Kitty Antonik Wakfer”, I would definitely with a hefty abolitionism thrown in, urge myself to hide behind a pseudonym, and not only because I am a guy?

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 4, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

From Anarcissie, January 3 at 5:17 pm

Regarding government “and lackeys willing to support them.” 

You find these lackeys everywhere.  They have no conviction to any greater good whatever…...they are all ‘self’, and the same lackey who works for government today would work for a similar institution of bureaucracy tomorrow.  Some of these lackeys work for the CorpO-Ologarchists for free and don’t even know who they’re supporting!  They speak in the dogma of the institution to which they are loyal.  When the ship goes down, they are the rats to jump first to find another ship.  They borrow deep in the hold and feed off the sailors stores.  God save us when the drink the rum of power.

We need to be able to identify these rats and keep them in a nice productive isolated job where they can’t turn the institutions against us.  Lot’s of ‘self’, and big dreams of power.  Pathetic lackeys.

It remains a question in my mind, regarding human nature, as to how intrinsically nasty these lackey’s are, or how much nicer they might behave if they had a secure social contract.  I think that is a topic that we as a society should address in specifics…...what has our social contract become?  For those of us who want to work together, what are we willing to PROMISE the next generation.  Whatever we will inherit from the last generation is what we get, but what are we willing to work for to pass on to someone other than ones own DNA, ones ‘self’.

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John Best asks,

By John Best asks, "What IS Progress"?, January 4, 2011 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment

Anarchissie, regarding your post January 3 at 5:17
Good stuff, not to be intellectually selective, but I singled out this passage so I can get back to work:
“The centralization and monopoly status of coercion in government attracts sociopaths (‘statesmen’) and lackeys willing to support them.” 

Interesting point to be sure, and a practical observation.  You see a ‘but’ coming…..But, this is why they set out to have competing branches of govt to check the formation of monopolies of power.  It may be no coincidence that since WWII there have been more abuses?  Perhaps WWII forced the suppression of certain checks and balances?  It is also possible that the massive amount of money spent during WWII was the start of corruption (military-industrial complex) that acted to suppress (buy off) congressmen who should be standing up against the sorts of coercion you illuminate. 

I agree that Government is coercive.  But, if it coerces, coaxes, convinces people to do their fair share, that’s one thing.  If it forces, imprisons, tortures, intimidates people into doing what is not fair, that’s another matter altogether.  Where are we on this spectrum?  I don’t know exactly.  I’ll say corruption pushes us toward the nastier extreme, and we’re moving closer to that with each year, and each executive order that violates civil liberties. 

At least with our government, we can and are pushing back.  Who knows?  I’m happy to have people like Hedges keeping us alert.

But back to monopoly…..I recall a history lesson about Andrew Carnegie, a man I respect, hiring private police to actually shoot striking coal miners somewhere in Pennsylvania about the turn of the last century.  Those were bad times, but we got through it stronger for the experience.  Our government, as much of a mess as it is, can do right by us only if we are more clever and hard working at it’s controls than the CorpO-Oligarchists. 

That Andrew Carnegie example is interesting…...we need these seemingly ruthless, driven people to somehow drive us and carry us along in productive pursuits, but darn it, they are human too, get power crazed, and can be quite horrible unchecked.  This seems to be the crux of our private-vs-government situation.  There has to be a mechanism of some sort to check the naked brutality that seems to come along with monopolies of power.  I agree with you monopoly of power of government, or within government is a serious issue.  But anarchy?  It just shifts the monopoly of power elsewhere.  Power by it’s nature coalesces into a monopoly and continually has to be broken up before we get to biblical scale catastrophes.  I don’t advocate breaking up government, but I think we need to de-corrupt it so we can prune it in a sensible way that favors people.

Oh, and I appreciate the sociopaths-statesmen linkage!  I try to be civil, but I hesitate to call myself a ‘gentleman’ because so many have masqueraded behind ‘statesmanship’, or ‘gentle-manliness’, then gone off and behaved quite poorly to say the least.

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By David J. Cyr, January 4, 2011 at 1:24 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (JimBob, the backward looking ape):

“These guys who spout the End of Days always seem to take it as a given that we are leaving behind a world where everything was better, everything was good and sane and wholesome.  But it isn’t true… I just happen to know a little history.”
____________

The “progressive” liberals use whatever progress they failed to past prevent to prevent the progress they are currently preventing.

Those actually wanting people to progress look forward, and they support the good that could be, rather than contently seeking to maintain the mistakes of history… repetitively.

After the liberal devised profits from pollution-swaps bubble bursts, the climate changed planet will be leaving humans behind, along with all their history… just another species unfit for survival.

The most marvelously distracting light comes just before the Sun sets.

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By Anarcissie, January 4, 2011 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

Kitty Antonik Wakfer:

‘... I am not anonymous and urge others not to hide behind pseudonyms. ...’

Believe it or not, I have received death threats for publishing my opinions, which has somewhat dissuaded me from using a name which could be looked up in a telephone book or on Google.  Also, in a venue like this, I prefer it if people pay attention to my ideas rather than the accidents of my person (age, sex, ethnicity and so forth) which so often are used as a basis for personal attacks.  Anyone who really, really needs these facts can apply to me at my email address and we’ll see.

In regard to individuality, individualism, independence and the like, I prefer to say ‘autonomy’ which doesn’t evoke ideas of isolation that (in some people’s opinions, anyway) are delusional.

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By JimBob, January 4, 2011 at 12:46 pm Link to this comment

Well…maybe.  There’s certainly evidence that we’re giving up freedoms in exchange for safety from a manufactured threat.  But a lot of people read Chris Hedges; he hasn’t been thrown in a rat-hole yet.  Noam Chomsky hasn’t been banished and Ralph Nader flamed out as the narcissistic asshole who gave us George Bush on a plate.  We still have more personal freedom than most humans in history have ever had.  I wonder what world Hedges imagines we are leaving behind that was so perfect and wonderful…the one not long ago where black people drank out of separate water fountains?  The one where periodic bank panics ruined whole swaths of the population who were left without any kind of safety-net?  The one where children died of polio?  The one where “to see the world” mean traveling more than five miles from home?  The one where gay people lived in closeted terror?  Where social and political conformity was a hundred times more rigidly enforced than it is today?  These guys who spout the End of Days always seem to take it as a given that we are leaving behind a world where everything was better, everything was good and sane and wholesome.  But it isn’t true: humanity has lurched from one form of tyranny to another since the first cave man subjugated his cave-mates with the jawbone of a mastodon.  Frankly, I think the time and place we are living right now is just about the nicest, free-est (from tyranny, disease and stupidity) and most comfortable that has ever existed.  Do I sound like Bernard Marx’s girlfriend Lenina?  I don’t think so.  I’m not medicated or hypnotized—I just happen to know a little history.

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By DREGstudios, January 4, 2011 at 1:51 am Link to this comment

Huxley indeed rolls in his grave… I kept seeing this image and felt compelled to draw it.  Check out the portrait of Huxley’s corpse at my blog-

http://dregstudiosart.blogspot.com/2010/07/aldous-huxley-rolls-in-his-grave.html

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By TAO Walker, January 3, 2011 at 9:59 pm Link to this comment

In response to her earlier comment on this thread, this Old Indian asked Kitty Antonik Wakfer to tell us just exactly how the Living Arrangement of our Mother Earth fits into the philosophical system informing the website she linked-to.  She has so-far declined to do so.

So in-view of her most recent appearance here, and her repeated claim in it that the entire purpose of Human Life is the pursuit of “individual” “happiness,” maybe she will answer it now.  Does she maintain that Humanity, as such, has no given organic function within Earth’s Living Arrangement?  If she believes it has, what is it, exactly?

Much of the virtual subspecies homo domesticus has been systematically programmed to believe, and behaves “self”-referentially as if its members do believe, that all the rest of Life here exists solely for their benefit, to be exploited at-will to whatever ends desired.  Besides the obvious insanity of such a completely “self”-centered “creed,” could all the ills to which tame Two-leggeds are heir, including “government,” be merely the natural and inevitable CONsequences of their absolute failure to fulfill their share of the Human function in the Living Arrangement?

Wouldn’t those CONsequences very likely be especially devastating, for ALL-concerned, if Humanity’s given function is that of a vital component in Her immune system….think AIDS?  Finally, do Human Beings actually occur (and are they viable) in Nature
as “individuals”? 

If Kitty Antonik Wafer thinks they do (and are) let’s see her prove it.

HokaHey!

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By Anarcissie, January 3, 2011 at 12:17 pm Link to this comment

John Best, January 3 at 1:25 am:

Anarchissie,  with respect to the question of corruption of government, you pose: “Or with one since any government must necessarily be composed of the same nasty human beings it is supposed to restrain”.

For me, I agree with Churchill who said how horrible Democracy is, except for everything tried yet.  I think we would fare far better to rethink and retool our methods for throwing corruption out of the US government at all levels…....no small task to be sure, and without extreme work and diligence by you and me, it’ll re-corrupt soon enough, but ther is no way, no way whatever I would think for a nanosecond to support anything resembling anarchy. ...

I’m wasn’t thinking of corruption in the usual sense.  Government, whether democratic or not, is necessarily based on the institutionalization of coercion, including violent coercion.  Not only does modern government insist on totalitarian claims over persons and the territory they live on, but it also prescribes a class system (at least, those in the government and those not) and a class system can be maintained only by force.  Moreover, since knowledge is power, and the government must be powerful, the government must also practice secrecy, deception and fraud, so that it has more and better knowledge than those it rules.

The centralization and monopoly status of coercion in government attracts sociopaths (‘statesmen’) and lackeys willing to support them.

One might argue that liberalism and democracy should eliminate or mitigate some of these problems, but this is not what we observe historically in even such political poster children as Great Britain and the United States. 

Since World War 2, the United States government has engaged in dozens of military operations against people who had not attacked it or its possessions, resulting in two or three million noncombatant deaths—murders—and countless instances of mayhem, terror, torture, famine, imprisonment, destruction of goods and so on, in pursuit of imperial goals.  At home, allegedly democratic institutions have been subsumed into plutocracy and a deepening police state.  For me, this is simply the logical working out of the idea of government.  I think something else is needed.

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By truedigger3, January 3, 2011 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

John Best,

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your valuable knowledge, observations and experiences
with us and battling that fat Freddy which I think most of his fat is a replacement of his brain.
I think small part of Fat Freddy confusion and myopic understanding stems from that, after the corporations due to weakening or eliminating regulations, and gotting so big and powerful as a result of that, to own and control completely the the government, they used the government to introduce new regulations that enhance their positions, increase their markets and protect their turf against smaller competitors and new comers.
For example, many complained that the new safety food bill that passed lately, with the blessing,  approval and urging of the big food corporations, has introduded many superfluous costly regulations that are difficult to comply with for the small or new comers food companies which will eliminate most of the comptitions for the big food corporations!.
Another example is the recent health care “reform” fiasco which in its real essence is nothing but huge government subsidies to the Isnurance/Medical/Pharma complex and forcing more thant 30 million new customers to buy costly weak medical insurance policies from the insurance companies.

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