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Power and the Tiny Acts of Rebellion

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Posted on Nov 22, 2010
AP / Jeff Widener

By Chris Hedges

There is no hope left for achieving significant reform or restoring our democracy through established mechanisms of power. The electoral process has been hijacked by corporations. The judiciary has been corrupted and bought. The press shuts out the most important voices in the country and feeds us the banal and the absurd. Universities prostitute themselves for corporate dollars. Labor unions are marginal and ineffectual forces. The economy is in the hands of corporate swindlers and speculators. And the public, enchanted by electronic hallucinations, remains passive and supine. We have no tools left within the power structure in our fight to halt unchecked corporate pillage.

The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents, was never endowed with much vision or courage, but it did occasionally respond when pressured by popular democratic movements. This was how we got the New Deal, civil rights legislation and the array of consumer legislation pushed through by Ralph Nader and his allies in the Democratic Party. The complete surrendering of power, however, to corporate interests means that those of us who seek nonviolent yet profound change have no one within the power elite we can trust for support. The corporate coup has ossified the structures of power. It has obliterated all checks on corporate malfeasance. It has left us stripped of the tools of mass organization that once nudged the system forward toward justice.

Obama knows where power lies and serves these centers of power. The tragedy—if tragedy is the right word—is that Obama, after selling his soul to corporations, has been discarded. Corporate power doesn’t need brand Obama anymore. They have found new brands in the tea party, Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. Obama has been abandoned by those who once bundled contributions for him by the millions of dollars. Obama and the Democratic Party will, I expect, spend the next two years being even more obsequious to corporate power. Obama clearly loves the pomp and privilege of statecraft that much. But I am not sure it will work.

Reformers on the outside, while they remain militant and faithful to issues of justice, nevertheless depend on the liberal establishment to respond to public pressure. If these reformers cannot pressure the liberal class and the power elite to evoke real change, they become ineffectual. Our fate is intimately tied to the liberals who have betrayed us. We speak in the language of policies and issues. We will find it harder and harder, given our impotence, to compete with the impassioned calls for new glory, revenge and moral purity that resonate with a public beset by foreclosures, long-term unemployment, bankruptcies and a medical system that abandons them. Once any political system ossifies, once all mechanisms for reform close, the lunatic fringe of a society, as I saw in Yugoslavia, rises out of the moral swamp to take control. The reformers, however well meaning and honest, finally have nothing to offer. They are disarmed.

We have reached a point where stunted and deformed individuals, whose rapacious greed fuels the plunge of tens of millions of Americans into abject poverty and misery, determine the moral fiber of the nation. It is no more morally justifiable to kill someone for profit than it is to kill that person for religious fanaticism. And yet, from health companies to the oil and natural gas industry to private weapons contractors, individual death and the wholesale death of the ecosystem have become acceptable corporate business. The mounting human misery in the United States, which could lead to the sporadic bursts of anger we have seen on the streets of France, will be met with severe repression from the security and surveillance state, which always accompanies the rise of the corporate state. The one method left open by which we can respond—massive street protests, the destruction of corporate property and violence—will become the excuse to impose total tyranny. The intrusive pat-downs at airports may soon become a fond memory of what it was like when we still had a little freedom left.

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All reform movements, from the battle for universal health care to the struggle for alternative energy and sane environmental controls to financial regulation to an end to our permanent war economy, have run into this new, terrifying configuration of power. They have confronted an awful truth. We do not count. And they have been helpless to respond as those who are most skilled in the manipulation of hate lead a confused populace to call for their own enslavement.

Dr. Margaret Flowers, a pediatrician from Maryland who volunteers for Physicians for a National Health Program, knows what it is like to challenge the corporate leviathan. She was blacklisted by the corporate media. She was locked out of the debate on health care reform by the Democratic Party and liberal organizations such as MoveOn. She was abandoned by those in Congress who had once backed calls for a rational health care policy. And when she and seven other activists demanded that the argument for universal health care be considered at the hearings held by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, they were forcibly removed from the hearing room. 

“The reform process exposed how broken our system is,” Flowers said when we spoke a few days ago. “The health reform debate was never an actual debate. Those in power were very reluctant to have single-payer advocates testify or come to the table. They would not seriously consider our proposal because it was based on evidence of what works. And they did not want this evidence placed before the public. They needed the reform to be based on what they thought was politically feasible and acceptable to the industries that fund their campaigns.” 


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By Max Resonance, November 23, 2010 at 5:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If, as the Supremes decided, corporations are artificial humans and have the right to contribute to election campaigns, then they also should have the same limited lifespan as humans—fourscore and ten—oh heck, round it off to 100 years—after which they have to dissolve and sell off their assets. Only fair. Otherwise we’re headed for a future in the hands of large conglolmerates that are considered ‘too big to allow to fail.’

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By garth, November 23, 2010 at 5:18 pm Link to this comment

Why create a third party when right-minded patriots can do to the Democratic Party did what the Tea Party did to the Republican Party?  The Progressive Caucus can be taken from the clasp of the aliens in the Democratice Party.  They can be supported based on issues to the exclusion of supporting the DNC and DSCC and all those other wings of the Filthy Rich Connivers.

I am not talking about projecting another era of Great Man history where the Lone Ranger is electted to office and he or she starts playing the same of fucking games.  I am talking about a movement.  Call it a Political Bowel Movement.  Out with the bad and in with the good.

Ralph Nader’s book, “Only the Rich Can Save Us” seems like a whiney, weepy plea for a little mercy from psychopaths who don’t have any idea what compassion or empathy is.

If they were burglars, they’d break into your house and steal a hot stove and then come back for the smoke.  They are the antithesis of John Beresford Tipton.  A picture that hangs behind their desks would show a group smiling minorities and elderly.  The caption under the picture would read, “There’s gold in them thar teeth.”

To them, compromise is weakness.

Support only the 90 Progressives.  Keep getting them re-elected.  Gain momentum.  The Blue Dogs learned Truman’s axiom first-hand, and they lost to the real Republicans.  Good riddance!

If a leader emerges it should be someone who is known and I mean known, not like the bozo Obama, but someone who has been tested.  Like the leader of Bolivia, Evo Morales, who emerged from the crowd and has been shown to be an real Progressive, an honest and moral man.

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By Michael Lanthier, November 23, 2010 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Don’t ask for guarantees. And don’t look to be saved in any one thing, person, machine, or library. Do your own bit of saving, and if you drown, at least die knowing you were headed for shore,“ Professor Faber.

We are an actionless society. A passionless society. And the winds of distraction blow in every direction.  But this is how our democracy was set at the beginning. It is nothing new. Fearful of the common people and the masses, our democracy never encouraged passion or action. It never encouraged us to be equally involved in the responsibility of us. We are to be the Faber’s of fear, unsure of sharing ourselves with our neighbors and countrymen. We were destined to sit idly back waiting for change to come from the top. Even the few revolts within our short history have been those that look to the top for change, yet we have no kings or queens to guide us but only jesters to the thrones of our magical creations.

The economy is a potion causing a revolving distraction to keep us from ever truly working together in building our potential. Quickly look at China. Its robust economy quiets resistance. View the US. Its teetering economy quiets resistance as well; instead we are busy blaming or quivering in fear taking a daily electronic pill to calm our nerves.

Hedges fears that we have “no one within the power elite we can trust for support ,” but that is our problem. We want messiahs. But look to history, the powers of our past messiahs are always quickly forgotten, and never does the change they offer last.

The revolution has no leaders. Action is found in real passion, not the fleeting passion mustered up in frivolous speeches and promises of someone who is not our own. Passion is found in safety, but our society breeds insecurity which quells expression and instead leads to inner torment and soon an explosion of insanity. With no safe avenue to express ourselves our society will lead us either to complete insanity or like Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 to become reliant on stimulation and numb to passion.

What is that passion? What is real passion? It is the passion of discovery, of creativity, of expression. It is the passion to be ourselves. It is child-like passion: fearless and forever curious.

We need not take to the streets. We instead must dissolve the economy potion that blinds us; that binds us. To do so we can use its gifts against itself. Our most recent economic creation has the Darwinian craving for the best. So let’s give the best. Let’s co-op ourselves. Let’s co-op our passions. Together we are a creature able to devour the corporate leviathans and their paid ruling jesters.

Hedges is right. We need a new resistance. It is found in ourselves, together.

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By TAO Walker, November 23, 2010 at 5:08 pm Link to this comment

How about this as an organic response, a possibly viable alternative, to the otherwise irremediably terminal CONditions Chris Hedges and most others commenting here seem to concede are no longer merely looming, but rather here-and-now hard-upon us?  Instead of getting to “....hang separately” as ersatz “individuals” sacrificing their “self” in futile and solipsistic “....tiny acts of rebellion,” our domesticated Human Relations might come together right where they live and breathe every Day in aid of our Mother Earth.  Instead of perishing all alone in the virtual world-o’-hurt that is even now disintegrating so disastrously all around them, they might start to recover some of their free wild Human Nature by helping each other, where they are right now, to get out of the smothering shroud of CONtrived “individual”-ity and back into the Vision of our Mother Earth and the Song ‘n’ Dance of Life Herownself.

There will, of course, still be real sacrifice real pain….and plenty of it.  There is no escaping this “global” privateering pyramid scheme death-trap (short of “death”) that will not include the loss of the make-believe “self,” with its pitiful gibbering demands for the “comfort” and CONvenience to which it is addicted.

The “self”-obsessed who idolize the sub-species homo domesticus, and believe everything and everybody “else” in our Living Arrangement exists solely to satisfy its bottomless appetites, are now hard up against the fatal flaw in their human-ist philosophy.  Human Beings do not in-fact occur, and are not viable in Nature as “individuals.”     

Humanity, as such, is a vital component (one, however, seriously compromised presently) in Her immune system.  That is our given Organic Function.  The Natural Organic Form in-keeping with it is what English-speakers might call Genuine Living Organic Human Community. 

So it isn’t really all that complicated, stripped of ideological bullshit and institutional propaganda.  Get together and clean-up the mess, right where you are right now.  Get well doing it.

That’s The Tiyoshpaye Way.

HokaHey!

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By Royal Subject, November 23, 2010 at 5:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It was only a matter of time before the military
transformed itself from protector and defender of the
people to the dog and lash of corporate power.

All the wealth that has been stolen from the working
classes, the poor, the sick and the third world in
order to manufacture weapons for the benefit of the
economy and arms dealers and their corporate bosses
is now returning to its birth place in the form of
the beast of political power.

This militarism created to subjugate and control
and conquer other cultures and ephemeral evil empires
for the sake of avarice and conquest and “prosperity”
will now sit as military government.

The imperialism of the past, once exported as the
strong arm of right and good and democracy is now
ironically returning home and likely to impose
“right” thinking on its own populace, far right.

  The new enemy will be the voice of reason from the
remnants of a once great and thinking democracy. 
Imperialism will turn on itself and become fascism
with ignorance and fear as its greatest and most
powerful allies.

This is what happens when we expect to little of
ourselves and don’t learn from history.

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By GentileMan, November 23, 2010 at 4:40 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

You’re all so outraged and all so confused, barking up the wrong trees. It’s not about Republicans or big corporations. The engineers of America’s demise, indeed the coming demise of the whole West, and of global liberty, are as deep in the left as they are in the right. They all belong to the same group. The most eye-opening and important book you will ever read:


The Culture of Critique by Kevin MacDonald

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By gerard, November 23, 2010 at 4:35 pm Link to this comment

CavlanRN:  Impatience for action—unspecified, unplanned, ill-considered action—may bring some people some emotional release, but it is missing some vital elements such as shared decision-making based on shared understanding of complicated and inter-related problems and effective counter-actions.  As an RN—presumably a healer—you must know these statements as facts, not idle twaddle. (Also, demeaning your fellow-strugglers does not “make points.”)

It will be interesting to see what “entropy 2” is presenting as specifics.

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By Inherit The Wind, November 23, 2010 at 4:31 pm Link to this comment

Violent revolution will do what violent revolution always does: Bring about terror, death, totalitarianism, and The Dark Ages. It has in every society that has had a violent revolution.  A strong man emerges and he becomes a Kim Jong Il,  a Saddam Hussein, a Robespierre, a Stalin.

The United States has never had one. Our nation had a rebellion against a foreign authority, not a revolution, despite the misnomer.

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By archivesDave, November 23, 2010 at 4:19 pm Link to this comment

Chaviztaking:
It’s not that I’m pessimistic,..actually I’m pretty
optimistic long term, being a Christ Follower.
Have seen the Socialist routine touted/tried over and
over…been there, done that.
Yes, a viable third party is the only way things will
be changed…
Recall back around 20 yrs…Ross Perot, whom I didn’t
vote for or think had a chance, DID get about TWENTY
PERCENT of the vote.
This time, I really think Jesse Ventura has a vastly
better chance since folks are far more pissed and
motivated for a change.
I’ll definitely support and campaign for Ventura
unless he does turn out to be an ‘obfuscator’ like
Alex Jones, Maxwell, and Icke. Time will tell.

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By M L, November 23, 2010 at 4:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I agree Chris. We need to let go of the notion that people at the top are responsible for accomplishing reform. Political reform comes from wherever there is motivation and commitment. The reason we are doubtful about reform is the common belief that we need those in power on our side. Not true, And besides, the wait will kill us.

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By Inherit The Wind, November 23, 2010 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment

Gulam,

In my humble opinion, you are out of your mind.

You want women to be housekeepers, cooks, sex machines, and (obviously) occasionally, punching bags.

You will never know the fantastic joy of looking at a beautiful, brilliant, talented, educated, magnificent woman who can take on the world and saying THAT is my wife!  That amazing creature loves ME! 

You would, in your sickness, see her as something to break and destroy.

I don’t feel sorry for you. I feel sorry for the women in your life, because you think your genitals and your physical strength somehow make you smarter and wiser than them. 

I have news for you: Brains aren’t stored in your balls, even if you think they are.

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By entropy2, November 23, 2010 at 3:58 pm Link to this comment

@Michael Cavlan RN - the same question has been nagging at me for some time. It’s not until Joe sixpacks (like myself) are able to connect, locally AND globally—AND GET THINGS DONE—that a crystallization, from the ground up, of our atomized culture can start to take place. There are a lot of focused sites that provide information and promote cooperation and mutual reliance in specific areas (DIY, local food, etc.), but none that I’ve found that offer a means for average people to get together in order to escape the corporate/state hegemony.

So…I am working on just such a site. My site has four elements that I feel are necessary to build relationships of trust and mutual benefit:

- A social network that emphasizes forming groups for the purpose of mutual aid—includes private messaging and forums
- A planning/project tool that allows individuals and groups to plan out and execute any size endeavor—this includes tasks, timelines and benchmarks, and allows files and ideas to be shared
- A resource exchange that focuses on several vital elements for need fulfillment—skills, materials, tools, facilities and information
- An emphasis on PRIVATE interactions among individuals and groups (as opposed to open-air babble sites like FB)

I built this site using the Joomla content management system platform (open source) and used several free/inexpensive open source modules—I put the whole thing together for under $200. It’s not too pretty yet, but I wanted to create a tool that will let us form our own voluntary social structure.

If you (or anyone) are interested, please take a look. The site is still in its embryonic stage, but I would love to hear any input you might have. If you want to set up your own mutual aid social net, I’d be happy to share how I put mine together. I firmly believe that when we fully comprehend the skills and physical resources we all have at our fingertips, we can begin to use them to build our own bridge to freedom.

http://papazoid.com

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By Gulam, November 23, 2010 at 3:55 pm Link to this comment

Your comment is right on David Syr:  “The “Feminist Movement” having been
abusively used to provide employers a massive surplus labor pool, so that most
families can no longer live on the income of only one breadwinner. Women
aren’t housebound anymore. Too many now must work 3 jobs to accumulate
half a living wage.”

For the last half century many if not most of the best new positions created by
the booming economy have gone to the wives of men who already had good
salaries and high social status. These double-income couples by their very
existence have diminished the prospects of a similar number of lower class
white and minority families who do not have one parent with a high-end
occupation. Working class women must go out to work, because high cast
women have taken away their husbands’ chances for a job good enough to
enable them to stay home with their children. In a nation with an incarceration
rate far higher than anywhere else on earth, many American women, especially
black ones, have husbands either in prison or out of work because they have a
prison record.

Americans and their European co-conspirators force feminism on the rest of
the world by force of arms, because it drives an economy into the kinds of
consumer demands that only industrial corporations can satisfy. The Americans
required the conservative Afghans to reserve 25% of their legislative seats for
women, a rate rarely seen in any American state. Both at home and abroad the
wealthy class in the West uses feminism as a means of domination. This shift in
wealth into the hands of a smaller number of families weakens any nation by
cutting the size of the middle class and raising the number of people in an
upper-middle, sub-elite class whose loyalty to the masses is diminished by
distance. It is easier for those at the very top to steal vast sums from this
upper-middle class, because unlike the lower-middle class, the working class,
they are less skeptical of the system and have been taught that it is smart to
play the stock market and use complex investments.

After the Second World War had Americans simply carried on with traditional
ways, no enemy could have touched them for generations. The oil that
Americans had under their own land would have lasted many decades longer
had it not been consumed in an orgy of material excess. Instead of following
the standard model supported by of all of the world’s major religions, modern
capitalists chose, like their fellow materialists the Communists, to use the
Enlightenment rhetoric of liberation to rearrange the social order. By
“liberating” women, putting them into the work force, the West embarked upon
an unstable course of continually increasing consumption that could only be
sustained by taking by force the resources of the rest of the world. This made
their need to dominate other nations inevitable, their destruction of the
environment was accelerated, and their family structures were undermined.
Feminism is the key to bringing on rapid decline; it opens he door to
destruction.

From the standpoint of the Palestinian or the Afghan, the Pakistani or the Iraqi,
barbarians from beyond the fringe of ancient civilization have invaded again,
and with their armies they ram inappropriate gender egalitarianism down the
throats of people who know better. I never saw any evidence of prostitution,
heroin, or any alcohol sold in Afghanistan in the 1970s or when I traveled
widely there in 2000 while the country was living under a Taliban Government,
but when the Americans and the ISAF forces came to Kabul there soon opened
in Kabul many “Westerners Only” restaurants that are essentially bar-whore
houses. When AIDS stalks Asia bringing prostitutes from many other countries
into a place like Afghanistan is a war crime. This is what American forces are
really doing for the women of Central Asia.

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By dihey, November 23, 2010 at 3:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I quote Hedges: “The electoral process has been hijacked by corporations”.
The truth is even worse. The electoral process of our nation started with “voting rights for white males only, preferably property owners”. Until shortly after the civil war our electoral process was hijacked by the big agro-barons. Perhaps there was a brief period during the “Reconstruction Years”  and the “Great Depression” when the electoral process came close to a democratic process. The hijacking by industry and banking was complete for the remainder of our history and is really nothing new. The perception of democracy by the nation is a principal ingredient for the power control of the ruling class.

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By Michael Cavlan RN, November 23, 2010 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment

When folks have decided just how many angels dance on a pin, or just which
dead revolutionary leader is right, or which particular theory of civil
disobedience is correct, please let us all know.

We wait with baited breath because after all, it matters so much.

This is becoming a repeat of my experiences in the Green Party in Minnesota. A
whole lot of talking and debating on issues that are not really important. While
nothing is getting done.

So again, what shall we DO? Not debate, discuss, dissect into a thousand pieces
of analysis.

WHAT SHOULD WE DO? Chris Hedges has laid out the problem. What do we do
about it?

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By REDHORSE, November 23, 2010 at 2:23 pm Link to this comment

There were sounds in the night and the dogs started barking. Was something there? Perhaps. Was it worth getting out of a warm bed to investigate. No. After all, it was just barking dogs, and everything seemed O.K. when the sun came up. But later, just beyond the gate, there was the tracks of something large and evil. But what was it? No matter. Its gone now. But in the afternoon, a woman came searching for her husband. The night before the dogs had started barking. He’d gone to investigate and seemed to have just disappeared.

    What did Hedges say that posters here haven’t said a thousand times? Things aren’t O.K. and haven’t been for a long while. Talk at it or talk around it. Is it worth getting out of a warm bed for?

    Other peoples Worldwide already suffer and endure within a magnitude of injustice, poverty and social/civil disintegration most Americans can’t comprehend. Damage and repression without hope of salvation. The entire World has crossed a line of technological, environmental, political demarcation. America and the World is being redefined by inhuman forces knowingly exploited by evil individuals. The dogs are barking. Is it worth getting out of a warm bed for?

    “—everybodies talkin’ into their pockets, everybody wants a box of chocolates and a long stemmed rose—-but everybody knows—”
                        L.Cohen

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By ocjim, November 23, 2010 at 2:22 pm Link to this comment

TKC mentions not voting for Dems or Repugs. That is precisely what Sarah Palin plans in not aligning herself with either party.

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By RayLan, November 23, 2010 at 2:10 pm Link to this comment

The corporate Gulag laughlingly referred to as a democracy is on the verge of turning this country into a third world nation of only two classes - the rich and the poor, the winners and the losers in the vicious dog fight for more and more profit.
But the first casualty of imperialism, whether it be despotic or oligarchic as in the stupid immoral wars it promotes, is Reason.

My intelligence is numbed by so many insults inflicted upon it by the rationalizations from the Right for dis-enfranchising poor, senior and powerless citizens from a minimally dignified existence. Then what adds injury to those insults is the weak-kneed cave-ins by the Democrats to the self-same easily defeated canards about Government spending, as though it were Government spending and not Wall Street spending that almost crashed the economy.

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By JDmysticDJ, November 23, 2010 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment

By David J. Cyr, November 23 at 3:50 am Link to this comment

Impressions can be misleading. For example, the photograph that accompanies your posts is in my humble opinion, misleading. Is this a photograph of you in your youth, or of some other person? To me, the photograph is reminiscent of the pre-hippy, young, idealistic, intellectual, beat generation individuals that existed at one time. However, when I read your words,

“The nonviolent can never achieve anything in America, without there also being a serious threat of the reciprocity of massive violence coming from masses of the victims of society’s violence, who have the will to achieve — by whatever means necessary — the same thing the nonviolent want.”

“There would be no MLK Day today (corporate state celebrating the state comforting nonviolence of Martin Luther King, Jr.), if there had not been a Malcolm X… if there had not been an angry black alternative clearly willing to kill police, and burn down cities.”

“Without an alliance with a violent alternative, the nonviolent only maintain the violence systemically done.”

I’m reminded of other images; those images all have horns and are much less appealing. I have personally witnessed renegades such as you completely negate the influence of movements towards peace and progress.

Your diatribes against democrats, liberals, et. al. is counter productive, counter revolutionary, and if given credence, will completely destroy any hope of coalition and consensus to achieve avowed goals. You have painted yourself into a corner. I’ll suggest that you wait for the paint to dry, and try to use better common sense in the future.

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By ChaviztaKing, November 23, 2010 at 1:53 pm Link to this comment

archivesDave: dont be so pessimist.  If you hate Republicans and Democrats but are pessimist against socialist workers parties and third party option you are really pessimist and a negator of reality.

Because according to political-realism, only a political party can save the oppressed.  Right now there are no extra-political solutions for nations.  There are no utopian solutions, there is no way to save the whole USA, outside of a political party rising to government power and from a government possition to change the nation.

I realize that most humans are naturally selfish, addicted to luxuries, wealth, fame and glory and that any party that would rise to power would get tempted by wealth, sex, pleasures and glory.

However if you reject third party options, and alternative political parties you are rejecting and negating reality

I think that we should do is to support a third party, and if that specific third party fails, to look for another alternative party, until we get a good one.

Just because republican party and democrat party are satanic, evil and corrupted to the bones, doesn’t mean that all political parties of USA are evil

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By JDmysticDJ, November 23, 2010 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment

Fat Freddy

I personally believe that this forum is important, and should not be sidetracked by a cultish discussion of the virtues of failed policies, but I’ll briefly respond to your losing bet. I’ll go “All in” regarding your contention that Thoreau and the lesser known are valuable chips in this game of chance (skill.)

Thoreau is an Icon who offered many philosophical gems worthy of praise, but he was also an Iconoclast that held himself aloof from the greater society. His writings on civil disobedience proved to be valuable and instructive; he was an abolitionist, and a critic of bad government policies. In my opinion Thoreau quite rightly criticized bad government policies that went a long way towards facilitating the burgeoning Robber Barons, but in the final analysis, he was a utopian anarchist. However, Thoreau was cogent and quite right, in my opinion, when he said, “I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government…”

A rational person can not deny the negative impact of immense government bureaucracy, I’ll suggest that government should be “streamlined,” but not to be made impotent. This government of “We the People,” needs to maintain the power necessary to protect the interests of “We the People” against the interests of extremely powerful self interested minority groups. All laws and regulations can be seen as obtrusive, to anarchists, but laws and regulations serve to protect “We the People” from the obvious detriments of utopian anarchy. Borrowing from Thom Hartmann, I’ll suggest that maybe you would be happier if you moved to Somalia.

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By memosyne, November 23, 2010 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

Read Walter Wink,  “Engaging the Powers”.  It speaks to non-violent resistance to
the “Powers”.  He was a theologian who analyzed Jesus teachings in terms of
exactly the sort of resistance Mr. Hedges is discussing. 

Very very interesting.

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By David J. Cyr, November 23, 2010 at 12:08 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (elisalouisa):

“How often have I heard Conservative parents and young people of draft age comment that they are for these wars and then when pressed about a draft admit they are against the draft and would not not volunteer or want their offspring to enroll for such duty.”
____________

Yes, near every hawk is a chicken.

When I left college to work full-time organizing against the War Against the People of Vietnam… Laos… Cambodia, etc., one of my many tasks was Draft Counseling.

My counsel wasn’t popular, because I advised those trying to find a way to avoid being drafted to instead enlist… as I later did… to work against war within the military.

The way to stop imperialist wars is not to re-instate the Selective Service Draft (as some Democrats disingenuously propose), but rather to require every citizen (even quadriplegics) to serve a compulsory number of years — no exceptions.

The children of politicians should be required to be infantry personnel of lowest rank and highest exposure to danger in any event of war.

That’s the way to move an aggressor war machine into a solely for actual defense only posture.

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By elisalouisa, November 23, 2010 at 11:30 am Link to this comment

David J. Cyr:
“Republicans don’t pretend to want wars ended . . . Democrats do. . . Pretend.”

True, true, true.

ITW:
“If we want to end these insane foreign wars fought with working-class kids,
who volunteered, bring back the draft.  Bring the horror of the Afghan War and
Iraq to Middle-America’s kitchen. Let the Tea-baggers and chicken hawks have
THEIR sons and daughters in REAL danger.”

How often have I heard Conservative parents and young people of draft age comment that they are for these wars and then when pressed about a draft admit they are against the draft and would not not volunteer or want their offspring to enroll for such duty.

Sad, sad, sad.

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By David J. Cyr, November 23, 2010 at 10:41 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (Leefeller):

“Why would one be pointing to lies on the Democrats side and not the Republicans?”

____________

Republicans don’t pretend to want wars ended, or social justice provided. Democrats do… pretend.

It’s the job of the Republicans’ corporate party partners — the Democrats — to destroy the Left.

The Democrats were never a lesser evil. Through their relentless treachery (their moderation and murder of movements), they have justly earned their proper designation of being the far greater evil.

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By Inigo Montoia, November 23, 2010 at 10:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Yes David J. Cyr, right on.

For the last half century many if not most of the best new positions created by
the booming economy have gone to the wives of men who already had good
salaries and high social status. These double-income couples by their very
existence have diminished the prospects of a similar number of lower class
white and minority families who do not have one parent with a high-end
occupation, dramatically increasing the distance between the haves and the
have-nots. Working class women must go out to work, because high cast
women have taken away their husbands’ chances for a job good enough to
enable them to stay home with their children. In a nation with an incarceration
rate far higher than anywhere else on earth, many American women, especially
black ones, have husbands either in prison or out of work because they have a
prison record. Meanwhile upper class families buy second homes, fly around
the world on vacation, and eat food flown in from other continents.

Americans and their European co-conspirators force feminism on the rest of
the world by force of arms, because it drives an economy into the kinds of
consumer demands that only Western industry can satisfy. The Americans
required the conservative Afghans to reserve 25% of their legislative seats for
women, a rate rarely seen in any American state. Both at home and abroad the
wealthy class in the West uses feminism as a means of domination. This shift in
wealth into the hands of a smaller number of families weakens any nation by
cutting the size of the middle class and raising the number of people in an
upper-middle, sub-elite class whose loyalty to the masses is diminished by
distance. It is easier for the money lenders to steal vast sums from this upper-
middle class, because unlike the lower-middle class, the working class, they
are less skeptical of the system and have been taught that it is smart to play the
stock market and use complex investments.

After the Second World War had Americans simply carried on with traditional
ways, no enemy could have touched them for generations. The oil that
Americans had under their own land would have lasted many decades longer
had it not been consumed in an orgy of material excess. Instead of following
the standard model supported by of all of the world’s major religions, modern
capitalists chose, like their fellow materialists the Communists, to use the
Enlightenment rhetoric of liberation to rearrange the social order. By
“liberating” women, putting them into the work force, the West embarked upon
an unstable course of continually increasing consumption that could only be
sustained by taking by force the resources of the rest of the world. This made
their need to dominate other nations inevitable, their destruction of the
environment was greatly accelerated, and their family structures were
undermined.

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By Leefeller, November 23, 2010 at 10:24 am Link to this comment

“Any movement for social justice, or human survival, must have lie detectors. Detect a Democrat and you’ve found a bag full of BIG lies.”

In the short of it, movements as stated above for supposed causes of social justice will find the helm taken over by opportunists, history should support this. As one poster below stated, ‘new boss, meet the old boss or was it the other way around?

Why would one be pointing to lies on the Democrats side and not the Republicans?

As always my opinions are not set in stone, for like the skunk, i have seen the light but unlike the skunk I survived,..... for I heard the sound of tires and the racing of an engine!

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By David J. Cyr, November 23, 2010 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

QUOTE (Inigo Montoia):

“Long ago I arrived at the conclusion that the students of the Vietnam war era blew it….
This time around I am more wary of those on the left who preach responsible dissent and whose intent is to moderate outrage.”
____________

The irony is that there was far greater potential for substantive change in the 60’s than there is now — now, when substantive systemic change is existentially needed… very soon.

The 60’s didn’t provide the useful revolution it could have and should have because near everyone involved in any manner of protest then went on to spend the next 50 years of their lives voting for Democrats whose mission it is to preserve and protect the system from any democratic bottom-up change.

The “progressive” Democrats can be so pleased with themselves for:

The unions the Socialists made strong having been near completely Democrat destroyed.

The “Selective Service System” having been made far more selective… selecting economic “volunteers” only. A mercenary military.

The “Civil Rights” legislation having replaced crude de jure segregation with a politically correct continuum of pervasive de facto systemic liberal racism; getting rebellious blacks off the streets… into prisons.

The “Feminist Movement” having been abusively used to provide employers a massive surplus labor pool, so that most families can no longer live on the income of only one breadwinner. Women aren’t housebound anymore. Too many now must work 3 jobs to accumulate half a living wage.

The “Environmental” movement having provided a massive regulatory system that protects polluters and regulates environmentalists.

Over the past 50 years, the Boomer Generation’s “progressive” Democrats were so very successful in sabotaging every opportunity people had to affect any substantive systemic change needed that the young people today now don’t have 50 years of habitable planet left.

Any movement for social justice, or human survival, must have lie detectors. Detect a Democrat and you’ve found a bag full of BIG lies.

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By truedigger3, November 23, 2010 at 9:37 am Link to this comment

Re: By patriot10101, November 23 at 10:01 am

patriot10101,

Stop hallucinating, and spouting that drivel.!

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By truedigger3, November 23, 2010 at 9:31 am Link to this comment

Re: By ChaviztaKing, November 23 at 8:03 am


ChaviztaKing wrote:
“Humans like Che Guevara, Kennedy, Malcom X, Evo Morales, Hugo Chavez, Martin Luther King are strange humans, they are not normal humans.
And that’s what we need for America, a political party of *strange, weird* honest, saints, .......”
—————————————————————

I don’t know how much these people were “weird* honest, saints” ?!!
Kennedy, might have been weird*, but definitely, he WAS NOT honest and saint.!!

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By archivesDave, November 23, 2010 at 8:57 am Link to this comment

ChaviztaKing,
“These 2 sites are great, they are full of videos of
the economists and leaders of the Workers World Party

http://workersworld.net/
http://workers.blip.tv/?
sort=date;date=;view=archive;user=workers;nsfw=dc;s=pos
ts;page=1”

Meet the new boss,...same as the old boss!...

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By Tesla, November 23, 2010 at 8:38 am Link to this comment

I have no doubt that sometime relatively soon, we
will see some sort of uprising by a sizable portion
of the American citizenry. However, it must be
remembered that the federal government has a very
well recorded history of coming down hard, violently
and ruthlessly on such movements.

Capitalism is simply the engine used to transfer real
wealth from those that produce it (the masses) to
those that “know” how to use it.

The much ballyhooed “Great Depression” of the 1929-
1933 era was just one more in a string of “Panics”
that gripped this country since the mid 19th century.

The Panic of 1857 only ended with the War Between the
States much like the GD ended with WWII. But the
Panic of 1873 was so severe that rail workers
rebelled in 1877 (read about it here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Railroad_Strike_of_1877).

Western mining strikes in the mid 1890s also ended
badly for the workers because of the collusion
between the State and Federal governments and wealthy
capitalists.

In the Pacific Northwest during the 19-teens the IWW
(Wobblies) discovered just how deep the reach of the
anti-citizen sentiment ran and how invested every
vestige of government was in the axiom of property
rights trumped workers rights.

Simply put, expect any act of mass defiance that does
not dissipate quickly on its own to be dealt with
aggressively and severely.

Peaceful acts of protest and defiance were handled
recently as opportunities to put the public in its
place
(http://www.internationalist.org/defendoakland25103).
html) or even organizing protests
(http://www.wsws.org/articles/2008/sep2008/minn-
s11.shtml).

Just saying…

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By Inherit The Wind, November 23, 2010 at 7:34 am Link to this comment

Leefeller, November 23 at 3:41 am Link to this comment

So let me see if I get this right? The guy stood in front of the tanks changed the direction China was going and so China became more like US?
******************

Yeah, I have a problem with that logic as well.

I see a lot of people mis-understanding the anti-war movement of the ‘60’s and early ‘70’s.  I still remember people buying into the domino theory in the late ‘60’s and the movement from “Animal House” to socially aware youth—my elder sibs were in college in the mid-60’s to early ‘70’s.  By the time I got to college in ‘73’, it was all gone.

Why?

Simple. The Draft.  As long as it was non-college kids, lower-class sons of blue-collar or even poorer getting drafted, nobody gave a shit and had their keg parties (drinking age was 18 in most states).  But when the Draft started pulling kids out of college, when the Lottery system went into effect and Middle America realized that THEIR sons now had a really good chance of being sent into combat, everything changed.

Everybody young became an activist. The “Young Republicans” were as un-cool as Lawrence Welk for those young men and women.

I think Rangel may be right: If we want to end these insane foreign wars fought with working-class kids, who volunteered, bring back the draft.  Bring the horror of the Afghan War and Iraq to Middle-America’s kitchen. Let the Tea-baggers and chicken hawks have THEIR sons and daughters in REAL danger.

The Right Wing and our incipient fascism will melt like a sugar cube in hot water.

It’s easy to demand blood and sacrifice…from somebody else.

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By severed2009, November 23, 2010 at 5:29 am Link to this comment

Unless we want to oppress Tea Party types the way we think they want to
oppress us, we have to do something to change their minds.  Whatever that
something is, we have obviously not found it. 

This something is not a marketing campaign of the Big Lie, as we have seen
conservatives pull again and again, with good success.  We do not want people
to be amenable to their sorts of campaigns, and it is risky to try to achieve that
end using their means.  We want people to see through Big Lies, not adopt
“true” ones rather than “false” ones. 

Many people involved in the system know it is rotten, but see no alternative and
put up with it.  But if the people who feel that the system is rotten know how
many others agreed with them, they might be able to act together—except
that they have no clear idea what to do.

We should remember that wherever we want to go, we must get there without a
transition that destroys.  There is no way to put the ship of state into drydock
until the changes are made.  We have to make the changes as we are underway,
in such a way that they will not sink us or leave us vulnerable to storms.  For
technical reasons, this is difficult and dangerous.  Demonstrations and
barricades are a tactic in making the changes, but they cannot be the main
thing.

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By C.Curtis.Dillon, November 23, 2010 at 4:40 am Link to this comment

One other thing: several have commented on facing down tanks and other non-violent actions.  I just have one observation: why do you think cops are used to put down demonstrations and not soldiers?  Soldiers would not usually fire on their fellow citizens unless directly threatened.  That’s why the tank driver in Beijing stopped in front of that one man.  Cops, on the other hand, have years of experience dealing with the citizens and they have a very negative attitude toward their fellow countrymen.  They have no qualms about cracking a demonstrator’s head wide open.  They may actually enjoy the chance to get outside the control imposed by the police department and get some serious “payback” for all the crap they take everyday.

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By C.Curtis.Dillon, November 23, 2010 at 4:28 am Link to this comment

Just a comment from an insider.  As many of you know, I’ve been living in the former Soviet Union (Ukraine) for the last 5 years on and off.  I’ve watched the changes and they are horrific.  We now have an authoritarian government that is taking away freedoms at a frightening clip and pushing most of the people toward poverty.  They have recently turned their sights on small to medium sized businesses which they hope to tax out of existence.  The prime minister is a former Soviet era geologist who knows absolutely nothing about free markets.  The president is a former thug who spent years in prison.  They have loaded the government with thugs and crooks who seem intent on destroying the country.  It is a mess by any measure.  If you want to see where America is headed, look at Eastern Europe.  They are way ahead of us.

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By ChaviztaKing, November 23, 2010 at 3:03 am Link to this comment

patriot10101: Hi, i am a depressive-realist. I am an optimist but i am also a realist about the behaviour of humans. I have a mix of book-readings in my mind from Machiavelli, Nietzsche, Marx, Lenin, Socialist articles, Schopenhauer, The Bible and some others and according to most of the readings i have done humans are naturally diabolical (That’s what Schopenhauer and Machiavelli claimed), and humans are only good *only if forced* to be good. I know this sounds too pessimists and negative about people.

However, the point i would like you to understand is that what we need to save USA or any other country is a political party of saints, of *very strange* people, i mean *strange and weird* in the sense of not normal corrupt people, not normal people given to pleasures, to luxury cars, to girls, to fame, to glory.

You see most people, even people of the left and progressives on facebook and in many other websites are really after fame and glory and even wealth and friends.  They don’t really care about saving the homeless, the american indians, the prisoners and the most downrotten sectors of America like animals, elderlies with pain in nursing homes, americans with cancer, diabetes and the pain and suffering of millions of americans.

They are not as evil as Bush, Obama or Hitler. However most people out there you see on facebook and progressive sites are not what we think they are just because they are leftists or have a socialist slogan.  Humans like Che Guevara, Kennedy, Malcom X, Evo Morales, Hugo Chavez, Martin Luther King are strange humans, they are not normal humans.

And that’s what we need for America, a political party of *strange, weird* honest, saints, who would work for free, without a paycheck and who would be a servant of the poors, almost like Jesus Christ, without sex, without lust for women, for friends, for social relationships, without a need for fame, glory and for partying and for being popular


.

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By ChaviztaKing, November 23, 2010 at 2:35 am Link to this comment

BY THE WAY CHRIS HEDGES, I HOPE YOU READ THIS MESSAGE WITH BIG LETTERS AND A SIMPLE MESSAGE.  I THINK THAT THE ONLY SOLUTION FOR USA IS FOR THE LEADERS OF THE USA LEFT TO JOIN TOGETHER INTO A BIG UNITED SOCIALIST FRONT.  INSTEAD OF JUST CRITISIZING THE CAPITALIST ZIONIST IMPERIALIST SYSTEM, IT IS TIME FOR THE LEADERS AND INTELLECTUALS OF THE LEFT OF USA, TO GET DOWN TO WORK INTO THE CREATION OF A UNITED SOCIALIST FRONT

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By ChaviztaKing, November 23, 2010 at 2:29 am Link to this comment

These 2 sites are great, they are full of videos of the economists and leaders of the Workers World Party

http://workersworld.net/
http://workers.blip.tv/?sort=date;date=;view=archive;user=workers;nsfw=dc;s=posts;page=1


.

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By nubeewon, November 23, 2010 at 1:59 am Link to this comment

Sorry.  ...too LARGE…and…too small…

nubeewon

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By ChaviztaKing, November 23, 2010 at 1:57 am Link to this comment

Dear friends, the problem with being a socialist marxist in the USA, is that the USA is full of fear-mongers, full of people who would threaten you to call the FBI and CIA because you are a socialist, marxist.  How the hell can the left succeed in a nation that is full of anti-socialism, and where US founding fathers themselves were far-right wingers?  Damn I think that we need to re-create another USA with another US founding fathers.  I dont want to insult those US founding father supporters.  But i think that the US founders were not a role model of liberators and democrats like for example the liberator of Venezuela Simon Bolivar and Simon Rodriguez, who were real liberators, real egalitarians and real anti-oppressions.  Not the fascists Washington, Jefferson and Madison

.

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By Alan Attlee, November 23, 2010 at 1:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

First, one wonders how it could be that
14 billion years of evolution in this universe
culminate with barking-at-the-moon loon ball
humans.  But then, after taking a breath, one
sees beyond that, we humans are no more
significant than the bacteria that preceded us
4 billion years ago.  The machines will
succeed us and their problems will be their own
and we will never have solved ours or
have known any single era of true peace and justice.

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By nubeewon, November 23, 2010 at 1:47 am Link to this comment

I like this article.  It’s a nice thought.  It gives the people (me) some small hope that there may be something to hope for.  I hate what the rich, powerful and privileged have done to my country.  I want to kill them but I can’t.  They are to LARGE and I am to small.  I know how the oppressed feel, for I am one.

nubeewon.

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By Inigo Montoia, November 23, 2010 at 1:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Long ago I arrived at the conclusion that the students of the Vietnam war era
blew it. Several million more people died in Southeast Asia once we proved that
we were too timid to get serious about burning ROTC buildings, shooting back
at the police, and over-turning cars and buses like the French students. A few
hundred deaths at home could have save literally a million abroad had it
stopped that war sooner, and Americans might have learned something. Several
times I was involved in trying to see that the anti-war rallies went off
peacefully, so I plead guilty.

Now I see that you are only free as long as you periodically see that you can
change things when they go too far. This time around I am more wary of those
on the left who preach responsible dissent and whose intent is to moderate
outrage. The key that I use to tell the really sane from those who will sell out in
the end is the issue of 11 September. If someone implies that they swallow the
ludicrous public account, then I know that they are not serious about anything,
merely faux rebels mixing with the flock with the job of damping criticism. If I
were leading the neo-cons this would certainly be part of my strategy to pay
people on the left who could be counted on to push back on critical issues and
take the party line at important times. I would see money directed to the
moderates on the left who will attract the random energy of rebellion and
ground it out.

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By Ralph Kramden, November 23, 2010 at 12:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We are too busy “smoking cigarettes and watching captain Kangoroo” or is it celebrity dancing, the largest mansions in the world or the royal wedding. We are wimps and idiots, brainwashed idiots. We don’t know the difference between facism and communism. We think they are the same. Duh?
We think capitalism is TINA: the only alternative. If something is or goes wrong we watch Charles Bronson and Chuck Connors and John Wayne and Arnold take care of it. Funny, since WWII none of these super heroes have managed to bring about a single victory, not one. Well, maybe Grenada and the Berkley police department could have managed that one. We are WIMPS and one needs to go to France and see the anger and resistance that it will take to bring these tyrants down. Sorry, I don’t see it happening, not in the brain-washed USA.

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By gerard, November 23, 2010 at 12:23 am Link to this comment

MichaelCavlan,RN:  May I suggest that “I am not afraid” (plus the rest of your post) sounds more like a dare than a statement of fact.  Daring someone to do something is not a non-violent attitude.
  It is true that courage is required, but not to the exclusion of careful preparation, learning, understanding, planning, community/organizational discussion, admitting all the complications of any problem under consideration, and mutual agreement on goals and mutual commitments.  Sorry if this sounds to you like temporizing, but—Getting together to organize is important, and from the very beginning, tone of speech and attitude is vital if a true commitment to nonviolence is to achieved.
  And by the way, standing in front of oncoming tanks in China was apparently sheer individual courage, not an organized action, and it is a sheer miracle that it “worked” (not to change China but to become a worldwide symbolic act of protest. Tragically, in the case of Rachel Corrie, it did not “work”(to change Israel’s government behavior at least up to now, if that judgment were to be made).
  There is a profound difference between the two kinds of actions, between taking responsibility for many people being involved and acts of spontaneous (?) courage by individuals. Correct me if I am wrong.

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By Fat Freddy, November 23, 2010 at 12:07 am Link to this comment

When will the liberal left realize that Marxism/Socialism is a failure? It’s time to move on, people. Embrace Agorism. It’s the new left. You think the unions are going to do it for you? The unions are just as corrupt as the big corporations. Think, Jimmy Hoffa. The Bank Mutiny Day is a good place to start. The big banks are the root of the financing of the greedy corporations.

http://www.voluntaryistpunk.com/ebooks/AgoristClassTheory.pdf

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By David J. Cyr, November 22, 2010 at 11:35 pm Link to this comment

Michael Cavlan RN
Minneapolis Minnesota
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
(612)327-6902

Time to step up folks.
____________________

In this case, the “RN” stands for a **REAL** Nurse.

A good place to start would be for all those who said they supported Single-Payer to not be a patient of any doctor who doesn’t publicly advocate for Single-Payer.

That’s actually also a sensible personal health decision, because any doctor who doesn’t openly support Single-Payer is someone no person should trust their body to.

For the un-reconstructed liberal “progressives” here, who might want to now stop being the greater part of the Problem they have been, and begin being part of the Solution (for a change), a good place to start your necessary re-education is:

“Labors Untold Story” by Boyer & Morais

Published in 1955, by United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers of America (UE)

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By srelf, November 22, 2010 at 11:29 pm Link to this comment

Leefeller:
So let me see if I get this right? The guy stood in front of the tanks changed the
direction China was going and so China became more like US?

Hedges:
“It is time to think of resistance in a new way, something that is no longer carried
out to reform a system but as an end in itself.”

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By RayLan, November 22, 2010 at 11:27 pm Link to this comment

@Anderson
“Yes, we are watching the demise of empire America, not from the outside but from within.”
Yeah!

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By Fat Freddy, November 22, 2010 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment

JDmysticDJ

Your contention that businesses can not prosper while exploiting people and selling harmful products, is contrary to actual events.

Wrong. I said small businesses can not prosper. Large businesses can and do prosper with the help of government.

I will see your Upton Sinclair with Henry David Thoreau and raise you Lysander Spooner and Sam Konkin.

The best defense against bad business is education and awareness, along with free and fair competition. Your problem is not with the free exchange of goods and services, your problem is decisions that free people make. Yu think government can regulate people’s decisions the way religion can regulate people’s actions. Religion uses the fear of God. Government uses police, guns, and prisons. An institution with a monopoly on the use of force can not be controlled. Haven’t you figured that out yet?

Here is a reading list for you, if you have an open mind for free thinkers.

http://www.voluntaryistpunk.com/words.html

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By Michael Cavlan RN, November 22, 2010 at 11:11 pm Link to this comment

Michael Cavlan RN
Minneapolis Minnesota
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
(612)327-6902

Time to step up folks.

No more squawking, time to start walking

I am not afraid.

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By srelf, November 22, 2010 at 11:04 pm Link to this comment

Michael Cavian:
Yes, so who is willing to post their personal contact info?

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By David J. Cyr, November 22, 2010 at 10:50 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (gerard):

“Regarding non-violence as political action—it doesn’t just “happen”.  There is a viable ratioale behind it.  It requires a serious commitment not to respond to violence with violence. “
_______________

The nonviolent can never achieve anything in America, without there also being a serious threat of the reciprocity of massive violence coming from masses of the victims of society’s violence, who have the will to achieve — by whatever means necessary — the same thing the nonviolent want.

There would be no MLK Day today (corporate state celebrating the state comforting nonviolence of Martin Luther King, Jr.), if there had not been a Malcolm X… if there had not been an angry black alternative clearly willing to kill police, and burn down cities.

Without an alliance with a violent alternative, the nonviolent only maintain the violence systemically done.

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By Michael Cavlan RN, November 22, 2010 at 10:41 pm Link to this comment

I am of course speaking to those here who want to organize, actually do
something more than just debate.

I for one could give one good god damn how many angels are on the head of a pin
or which dead revolutionary leader was correct.

We need action and organizing. Not words.

In fact Let your actions BE your words.

So who is up for it?

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By Leefeller, November 22, 2010 at 10:41 pm Link to this comment

So let me see if I get this right? The guy stood in front of the tanks changed the direction China was going and so China became more like US?

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By gerard, November 22, 2010 at 10:36 pm Link to this comment

Regarding non-violence as political action—it doesn’t just “happen”.  There is a viable ratioale behind it.  It requires a serious commitment not to respond to violence with violence.  It requires an understanding of techniques that do not invite violence, and instead tend to “deflate” violence.  It requires a belief in the possibility of success, and a better result than might have been achieved with the use of violence—that is, a result which does not invite escalation of violence or its recurrence, but instead intercedes with a counter-force that suggests to opponents that striking violnently against nonviolent protesters is morally self-defeating, ultimately if not immediately.
  Using non-violence does not guarantee “victory” or “success” but does offer a more humane way of bringing about solutions to problems than killing, maiming and causing pain.  It relies in a belief that the human heart/spirit/mind, at base, deeply realizes that inflicting pain and suffering upon fellow-humanbeings is wrong—and as importantly, counterproductive. 
  There is a quality about nonviolent action which refers indirectly to the martial arts in that it proposes to use the opponent’s force to “throw” him (morally) off-balance, to use the weight of the opponent’s force against him by letting him “defeat himself” (morally or ethicaly speaking).
  These points are experiential, not intellectual or theoretical.  These tactics have worked in many severe circumstances and in other situations have not succeeded.  They cannot be “psyched out” ahead of time, for every circumstance differs. The best that can be done is to thoroughly understand all the forces one is combatting and to work together with others to decide what nonviolent tactics might work best and how to employ them, and how to try to prevent “sabotage” from those who believe that violence is preferable. Shared planning information previous to engagement is vital.  Knowledge and practice is necessary.
  Religious groups, or groups basing their theories on a kind of “religious” faith have studied and experimented with non-violence more frequently—Catholics, Quakers, Mennonites, and other groups (particularly in Europe) that are not formally associated with religion.  Religious belief is not a necessary factor, but faith in the philosophy of nonviolence, its necessity and its possibilities, is required.
  These are my personal beliefs and limited experiences, and I am open to criticism, counter-ideas, additioinal information, correction, whatever.
I only offer the above because the subject is “in the air” and few seem to feel like addressing it directly.  I believe it is important to seriously consider in as much detail as possible, a.s.a.p.

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By JDmysticDJ, November 22, 2010 at 10:32 pm Link to this comment

Fat Freddy

Your theoretical assertions are simplistic, and contradicted by historical events. Your contention that businesses can not prosper while exploiting people and selling harmful products, is contrary to actual events. Have you not heard of Patent Medicines? Perhaps you need to read Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle.”

Good Government needs to regulate business, when business needs to be regulated in order to protect people from predators. The problem is not government, the problem is bad government. “Let the buyer beware” seems like a sufficient method of restraining predatory business, but let’s not forget P.T. Barnum’s old axiom, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Suckers do need to beware of business, but suckers sometimes lack the wherewithal, and power, to do so. Good government’s responsibility is to provide these suckers with “The General Welfare.” Due to a laudable, but naïve mentality and lack of bad character, these suckers need to be protected from becoming prey to predators. I’ve got news for P.T., you can make suckers out of all of the people some of the time, and you can make suckers out of some of the people some of the time, but you can’t make suckers out of all of the people all of the time. It’s time for all of the people to demand good government policies, and to stop being suckers for failed policies and theoretical Voo Doo.

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By durruti, November 22, 2010 at 10:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Very interesting that osotired , liberateDc and others are discussing a tactics my
friends and I were talking about the other day - attacking the Banks through a
swarm of actions like withdrawal errors, computerized service requests, and many
other tactics. The demand was well put by Liberate DC - demand across the board
cuts in credit card interest rates (to 8% or whatever). I bet this is an idea that will
materialize because I am seeing it expressed in many different quarters.
What is missing is the idea delivery system. Going viral is not as easy as we think.
What is needed is a number of autonomous groups that have a history of working
together and can launch the attacks without trying to control/guide a whole
movement.

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By Michael Cavlan RN, November 22, 2010 at 10:19 pm Link to this comment

Well Dear God

This is exciting. People connecting the dots and being “allowed” to discuss it.
Even talk of actual ORGANIZING.

Could not agree more. So folks, which way do we go? How shall we organize?

I heard one suggestion of joining a Union, the IWW and going from there to
discuss a General Strike. I already am in the IWW. While it is tiny right now, if
enough of us join with this intention then this could actually be the start of
something.

So what say you all?

Oh critical part of this. Expose the apologists and collaborators. In the
corporate media, “progressive” media, “progressive” blogs and news-sites etc
etc. Make them less effective as propaganda tools.

Screw the owners. Lets prove George Carlin right about the owners and WRONG
about not being able to do anything about it.

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By Gonoril, November 22, 2010 at 9:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I quote, “Americans would never stand for a collusion between government and religion, ...”

Yeah, like Billy Graham and a host of Prezeyedents this side of East Sidalia.

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By aacme88, November 22, 2010 at 9:36 pm Link to this comment

The corporations sow the seeds of their own destruction, beginning with the hordes of unemployed, uninsured, and marginalized.
Their head-in-the-sand stance on climate change will be hard on everyone, but they will bear the brunt because they will own the wealth that will be swept away.
I have always said that if i were a terrorist, I would forget about bombs- messy, messy. Learn about computers. Blowing up a building does not damage an international conglomerate, just the people, mostly innocent, inside the building. But corporations and the corporate state live by computers. Some of those marginalized will have skills. One talented hacker-for-justice is at least as effective as a brave individual facing a tank.

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By David J. Cyr, November 22, 2010 at 9:24 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (Rudolfo):

“If Hedges doesn’t know that Obama represents the ruling oligarchy, then, what does he know?”
______________

The “progressive” liberals are the shield that preserves and protects the oligarchy.

It’s their job.

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By Rudolfo, November 22, 2010 at 9:04 pm Link to this comment

Hedges is the best ‘establishment’ analyst we have, smarter than me or you, yet it only takes a couple of paragraphs to get to a completely absurd sentence ... in this article it is ...

“The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents,”


How can one continue with such an article?  If Hedges doesn’t know that Obama represents the ruling oligarchy, then, what does he know?

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By PrematureFactulation, November 22, 2010 at 8:51 pm Link to this comment

Physicist Niels Bohr once said, “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about
the future.” Nevertheless, I fear that Chris Hedges’ predictions in this essay are
likely to come to pass. One might wonder why the corporate elite do not realize
that this may end up badly for them as well, but they are naturally inclined to think
short-term. Of course, it has ever been thus; throughout the sad stumble of
humanity through history, powerful idiots have created unimaginable suffering for
their fellow humans. The only difference now is that our failure to act on climate
change may destroy human civilization. Not so bad for me (in my seventh decade)
but I weep for my children and grandchildren.

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By Fat Freddy, November 22, 2010 at 8:41 pm Link to this comment

were able to amass vast fortunes (at that time) by gouging their customers/clients

Um, the price of kerosene dropped from over $1/gal to around 10 cents/gal, allowing lower income people to have light, thanks to Standard Oil. The monopolies that formed, in that time period, were the result of government favoritism, and unfair business practices on competitors, not necessarily on consumers.

The second failing of “Colossus” is its perpetuation of the robber-baron myth. Years ago, historian Burton Folsom noted the difference between what he labeled political entrepreneurs and market entrepreneurs. The political entrepreneur tends to compete over finite assets—or even to steal them—and therefore deserves the “robber baron” moniker. An example that Mr. Folsom provided: the ferry magnate Robert Fulton, who operated successfully on the Hudson thanks to a 30-year exclusive concession from the New York state legislature. Russia’s petrocrats nowadays enjoy similar protections. Neither Fulton nor the petrocrats qualify as true capitalists.

Market entrepreneurs, by contrast, vanquish the competition by overtaking it. On some days Cornelius Vanderbilt was a political entrepreneur—perhaps when he ruined those traitorous partners, for instance. But most days Vanderbilt typified the market entrepreneur, ruining Fulton’s monopoly in the 1820s with lower fares, the innovative and cost-saving tubular boiler and a splendid advertising logo: “New Jersey Must Be Free.” With market entrepreneurship, a third party also wins: the consumer. Market entrepreneurs are not true robbers, for their ruining serves the common good.


http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704380504575530332139071998.html

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By archivesDave, November 22, 2010 at 8:38 pm Link to this comment

G. Anderson:
“This is not pre war Germany. It’s the collapse of
the Soviet Union,
bankrupted by the delusions of communism. Just as
this country has been bankrupted
by it’s own peak delusions.”

Whether or not this is pre-War Germany or Post
Communist Russia, take a look, a forensic look at
both.
Where is Russia today? In the hands of the same
Corporatists that rule Amerika.  Listen to a few more
Jesse Ventura clips if u don’t believe yet!
Albert Pike: “ordo ab chao”.
“Git busy livin’ or git busy dyin’ ” Mr Anderson.

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By Fat Freddy, November 22, 2010 at 8:30 pm Link to this comment

The entire corporate structure is based on privilege and favoritism. Privilege granted by the government. Privilege financed by the banks and the Federal Reserve. It is ridiculous to think that one can regulate something that they are giving a privilege to. “Here’s a chocolate cake, junior, now, you can only have one piece.” It doesn’t work like that. 

Americans would never stand for a collusion between government and religion, why do we accept a collusion between government and private business? Fear. The ridiculous notion that somehow businesses want to rip us off. Small businesses that rip people off, and sell unsafe products do not stay in business for very long. So, how do the big corporations do it? Privilege, favoritism, intervention, call it what you want, but these corporations would never be in business without help from the government. How can anyone expect the government to protect them from the businesses that they are helping? It’s called conflict of interest.

December 7 is a planned run on the banks in Europe. It has received very little coverage in the MSM. However, thanks to the internet, what started on one small German blog, has now spread through Europe.

- Italien - Italy
- Deutschland - Germany
- Holland - Holland
- Grossbritannien - United Kingdom
- Griechenland - Greece
- Dänemark - Denmark
- Belgien - Belgium
- Tschechien - Czech Republic
- Portugal - Portugal
- Island - Iceland
- Albanien - Albania
- Schweiz - Switzerland
- Rumänien - Romania
- Spanien - Spain

Hier weiterlesen: All smoke and mirrors: Banque-Stop Action in Europe

http://alles-schallundrauch.blogspot.com/2010/11/stopbanque-aktion-in-ganz-europa.html#ixzz163ou2hB4

http://translate.googleusercontent.com/translate_c?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&sl=de&tl=en&u=http://alles-schallundrauch.blogspot.com/2010/10/die-franzosen-lassen-andere-wie.html&prev=_t&rurl=translate.google.com&twu=1&usg=ALkJrhj6lDh5CFP2KWqR9G8dT-5JyHr0vw

http://translate.google.com/translate?js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&sl=de&tl=en&u=http://alles-schallundrauch.blogspot.com/2010/10/stopbanque-aktion-auch-in-italien.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+SchallUndRauch+(Schall+und+Rauch)

Hat tip: Zerohedge

http://www.zerohedge.com/article/december-7-unofficial-pan-european-bank-mutiny-day

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By garth, November 22, 2010 at 8:12 pm Link to this comment

Kerryrose says,

“The Israeli did not stop his bulldozer from running over and killing Rachel Corrie.

The police at the G-20 convention in Toronto roughed up and arrested Amy Goodman.

They must completely adopt the mindset of their employer, and cease to be a thinking individual.  Perhaps we are all whores to our paycheck above and beyond all.  The ‘company man.’ “

—————————————————
That’s it.  Reach the company man mentality.  It can happen.

I remember seeing the overthrow of the dictatorship in Portugal.  The military man, a portuguese soldier’ was waving away the protesters with his empty hand.  He wasn’t armed.  He was one of them.

Portugal ignored the US advice from MAAG and let the rebellion go.  And for the most part it went peaceably.  Portugal is now a Democracy.

Obama might be trying to introduce to them a new form of slavery, call it Globalism.  From what I know of the Portuguese, they do not like Obama. 

The Cape Verdean (African) Portuguese call the main land Portuguese, ‘Young Bobs.’  And the main landers feel the same.

But I am sure they listened to message of Obama’s entourage, the State Department nasties.

We need to start at the roots.  We need to end our garden better.  Cull the weeds.

That’s how this current group of Tea bags and the moral Majority weeds started.

We need to get ‘em when they’re young.  Point ‘em to the sunlight.

After all, our strength is that this is the natural course of events.  As humans, this is who we are.

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By Tom Lardner, November 22, 2010 at 8:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Chris has really been hammering it home recently.
“Good on ya, Chris”, as the Irish might say. “De puta
madre, Chris”, as the Spaniards might say. No more
beating around the bush, let’s push back, dammit!
Thanks Chris, for your courage and uncompromising
eloquence.

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By ososotired, November 22, 2010 at 7:53 pm Link to this comment

Cash is not the best way to shake the system. The system sits on more than we can pull. BUT the system is based on sophisticated computerized methods. You can always find a sales person but have to wait for an hour to get someone to reverse an error. Banks are great at taking in fees but bad at keeping up with actual transactions. Insurance has lots of people to deny coverage and lots of people to take in premiums but few to accept customer cancellations. What is needed is one date… ONE SPECIAL DAY where a huge number of people cancel insurance t 9 and re instate it at 10 and cancel again at 11 and so on all day. Next day, withdraw all but $10 in early morning from every account you have and then, after noon, put it back in with an extra penny.
I am sure others can come up with great ideas which could effect the same result…. server crashes and disruption.

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By JDmysticDJ, November 22, 2010 at 7:53 pm Link to this comment

Again Hedges accurately and eloquently lists the problems that confront us, but his rejection of the “Liberal Class, which Barack Obama Represents,” Effectively eliminates hope that the Government will, “… respond when pressured by popular democratic movements.” Hedges rightly states that the forces of tyranny will respond with repression to popular democratic movements; surely Hedges doesn’t believe that the Right will, “… ‘respond’ when pressured by popular democratic movements.” The Right will indeed respond, but that response will not at all be the kind of reponse desirable. Many will argue that the, “Liberal Class, which Barack Obama Represents,” “…will not respond when pressured by popular democratic movements,” but this refutes the evidence of history, Hedges himself states,  “The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents, was never endowed with much vision or courage, but it did occasionally respond when pressured by popular democratic movements.”

Under the most positive of imaginings the American people would form a united front against the forces of tyranny and those who offer weak resistance to tyranny, but this is, under current realities, nothing more than a pipe dream. It is what it is, the wisest choices must be made in the near future, and counter productive choices must be avoided. Bad choices will only hasten catastrophe and not forestall catastrophe. Using the analogy of a military strategy, we need a holding action, in order to avoid total defeat, allowing for a reform making victory possible in the future.

Resistance from the American people is the only hope, non-violent protest on a grand scale would bring issues to the forefront of debate, and I believe, would cause the general populace, and the “The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents,” to respond positively. The success of this strategy would depend on the validity of positions, and on the way positions are presented. In order for this strategy to be successful, faith, and confidence, in the validity of desired goals, along with the required skill and knowledge to present positions would be necessary. Without popular support and consensus, goals are doomed. Coalition and not divisiveness is necessary in order to achieve goals, both in the short term, and in the long term.

Hedges relies on reason and example in his dialectic, but his offhanded dismissal of certain political realities, as they pertain to the “Art of the possible,” is, I believe, errant, and does not allow for those aspects of reality to be reasonably considered.

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By G.Anderson, November 22, 2010 at 7:45 pm Link to this comment

As Hedges points out violence, labeled terrorism is what they need to keep justifying
their existence.  This is not pre war Germany. It’s the collapse of the Soviet Union,
bankrupted by the delusions of communism. Just as this country has been bankrupted
by it’s own peak delusions.

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By Outrider, November 22, 2010 at 7:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Isn’t this what true leftists long for? All out revolution? Chris isn’t lamenting
anything.

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By Westcoastliberal, November 22, 2010 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks for your insight, Mr. Hedges.  Your words ring true from my observations, but resistance could be simpler than we think; see David DeGraw’s comments today at ampedstatus regarding Dec 7th.

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By FRTothus, November 22, 2010 at 7:35 pm Link to this comment

Take to the streets?  That’s theatre.

It is theatre because it is not maintained, and not
maintainable.

It WILL provide all the excuse they are waiting for
for setting loose their dogs of war.

Why so doom and gloom?

The strike, the boycott, the refusal to serve, the
refusal to pay tax - non-violent all, and effective
all. 

To have any effect, we must all be willing to be the
lamb to the slaughter, willing to be arrested,
willing to “be in trouble”, and I’ll bet there’s not
more than one in a hundred who has not had that kind
of fortitude drained from them by religion and school
and TV. 

Forget the theatre.  There’s more important work to
be done. 

“Perhaps, you have a responsibility to be informed,
to know for yourself. To know the truth. And then,
perhaps you must decide with your own conscience and
you r personal energy and your resources what you
should do.”  (Isabel Allende)

One Idea: a national democratic workers union with
our own health care and pensions.  Let’s pick one,
say the IWW, and make it our own.  We must organize! 
(One possible vision?  Take a look at the Venus
Project -see Zeitgeistmovie.com for starters.) 


The business forces are organized against us, we must
organize ourselves, else liberty is lost along with
the Republic that perhaps never really was.

Regardless, WE MUST ORGANIZE.

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By kerryrose, November 22, 2010 at 7:24 pm Link to this comment

Garth

The Israeli did not stop his bulldozer from running over and killing Rachel Corrie.

The police at the G-20 convention in Toronto roughed up and arrested Amy Goodman.

They must completely adopt the mindset of their employer, and cease to be a thinking individual.  Perhaps we are all whores to our paycheck above and beyond all.  The ‘company man.’

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By omygodnotagain, November 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm Link to this comment

Entropy2 I like your comment, and to add, what will change everything is that we are sinking in debt so deep we cannot get out. Corporations do not control the Chinese Government and as was seen at the G20, the Germans are not to happy with the US either, the Russians are doing fine. Europe will turn East, South America is turning its backs on us, the Arabs hate us for our unconditional support of Israel
The Hedge Funds and the Wall Street Robber Barons are trying to scam what they can, but ultimately when China says no ore money, or demand that payments are made in Euros or some other denomination then things will change.
Massive inflation, unemployment, and social disintegration in the US. When the dollar is worth nothing then things will change… already the world is turning its backs on the US.

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By David J. Cyr, November 22, 2010 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment

QUOTE (Chris Hedges):

“The liberal class, which Barack Obama represents, was never endowed with much vision or courage, but it did occasionally respond when pressured by popular democratic movements.”
________________

The function of liberals has always been to ensure that the least possible change would occur. That’s why the industrialized corporate state that grew out of the Civil War embraced the progressives, who have always protected the corporate state by murdering movements for social justice.

Whenever people have risen up to stand in opposition to the corporate state, the “progressive” liberals have provided the smallest “reform” possible that could persuade people to stop rebelling… too often successfully selling the mere appearance of “change” as being the actual change needed. Obama is just doing what **REAL** Democrats do… what “progressives” vote for.

All those sheepled people, who voted for Obama, voted **FOR** a “dumb” war to become his/their “necessary” wars; voted **FOR** his/their “too many legacy systems” position that Single-Payer was something that couldn’t possibly ever be done here.

In a debate held before the 2008 election, I warned that Obama would make fascism fashionable again. He has, with great help from all those maniacs who voted for him.

The system worked. We all got the devious retrograde shit that the “progressive” liberals (no surprise) voted for… again.

In 2008, Democrat voters butchered the ragged remnants of the antiwar movement, and they performed a partial-birth abortion on Single-Payer.

No facts-based well informed person, truly having good intentions, would be a Democrat, or vote for any Democrat. There are two kinds of Democrat voters: those who are consummately evil, and those who are dumber than cows.

Every vote for any candidate of the corporate (R) & (D) party is a free-will choice to be a willing accomplice in all the crimes that the corporate state commits everywhere — including the crimes it commits against the fools who free-willingly vote to be corporate complicit. Corporate (R) & (D) party votes are the bricks that build this system’s ovens the state has designed to eventually roast all but a select few… which will now be roasting all, since unheeded climate change is the only change gangster government is providing.

How to resist? There are many tiny ways, but the first step (for corporate party voters) should be to stop being a free-will collaborator in the crimes of the corporate state. That is **NOT** a “tiny” step. It’s a giant step forward in personal political resistance. It’s the day an “elections” hobbled slave stands and begins to actually be free…  starts on the path to becoming a whole natural person.

It is only when the Democrat faction of the corporate party receives zero votes — none at all — that We The People can then truthfully say, “We won’t get fooled again!”

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By madisolation, November 22, 2010 at 6:52 pm Link to this comment

I got the same message. Were they unable to accept comments earlier?

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By garth, November 22, 2010 at 6:46 pm Link to this comment

Hedges is prophetic. 

Is there someone in in their pink underwear in America who’ll stand in front of a tank?

Is there any tank driver in the US Army who will would stop and avert hitting another American?

I don’t think so.

You all saw it on TV.  Didn’t you?  A Chinese tank driver for a moment thought to himself and said, “Maybe there’s another way?  He stopped and dierted the tank from hitting the protester.

That’s the the germ of a thought we are after. Let it grow. It works. 

Arguments distract.  Some things aren’t relative.

To the contrary, and of this you can be sure, if it feels bad, it’s bad.

I say start thinking.

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By frank1569, November 22, 2010 at 6:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

‘The one method left open by which we can respond—massive street protests, the destruction of corporate property and violence…’

There is one method left before that one - stop spending money. Our money is the lifeblood of Big Corporate Everything - its all they want or care about.

If you stop going to Bennigan’s, Bennigan’s disappears. If you stop shopping at Circuit City, Circuit City disappears.

If we stop spending money on anything other than necessities - and buy as much of those from locals - Big Corporate Everything will have 2 choices: do what we tell them to do or disappear.

Or - go give Walmart and BP and Bank of America your money, pick up a copy of ‘The Secret,’ and wish all the bad shit away!

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By levinpsy, November 22, 2010 at 6:30 pm Link to this comment

Chris, you’re exactly right.

We must do the right thing because it is right, not because it is going to have any impact.  This is dissent and resistance of the highest order, and the very best solution to life in an impossible environment.

You have answered yet again all those who ask, “What are we to do if you’re correct in your assessment?”

Daniel Levin
St. Louis

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By @CT, November 22, 2010 at 6:25 pm Link to this comment

Remember what happened to those exterminated in Europe. Moral suasion doesn’t work on rats, weasels, greed freaks, authoritarians, soldier-cultists.

LiberateDC writes:
“Why are we not occupying and restoring abandoned buildings? They could provide housing for homeless families.”

Why aren’t we? Because “we” would be arrested and/or shot down in the streets, perhaps? For consequences like THAT, better “we” should occupy the ever-ready extra residences and hostelries of the uber-rich. :^/

Hedges is right that “violence” in street demonstrations is one of the express passes to total repression and/or disabling head injuries, but it’s surely as obvious to Hedges as to anyone that nothing but, er, revolution, is going to change this game.

Trouble is, the Patriot Act, and Lord knows what else, stands between the Zeitgeist and public expressions of what it’s whispering to all with inner ears. :^)

“If enough of us become Good Samaritans, we can take on the corporate state.”

“Take on” the corporate state? Hahaha: the task before us at this point is to take OUT the corporate state.

Remember what happened to JFK—on this very day, when many of us were just starting out in civic life? Remember also what they say about striking kings: studying ... John Brown ... might be a way to go.

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By ElkoJohn, November 22, 2010 at 6:23 pm Link to this comment

It seems that all political and economic systems
are meant to control the masses for the benefit of the few.
The American experiment of the New Deal was to create
a large ‘‘Middle Class’’ as the best-case scenario for capitalism.
Now all that is being eroded and taken away.
We will return to a pre-New Deal era, where the working class,
the poor & the marginalized just barely got by.
Then the brainless-capitalist-economic system will collapse on itself again.
We will have another Great Depression.
Then there will be an opportunity for another New Deal (aka the US),
or fascism, war, and then another move to Democratic Socialism (aka Europe).
Of course this is predicated on an outcome that capitalistic-fascism and war
will not make the planet uninhabitable for humans.
The stakes are high.
Stay tuned sports fans.

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By rubywildfire, November 22, 2010 at 6:14 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

entrophy2: these realities that you speak of are indeed harsh, but if you truly worry about your children, courage must replace apathy and/or fear and the sooner the better. Do you really think the coporate state will feed your children , or even allow you to feed your children when it becaomes apparent their system is dead and cannot be revived ? No, they will take every last drop. Best to look into becoming self sufficent as possible now, before the state makes it too difficult to do so.

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By Blackspeare, November 22, 2010 at 6:08 pm Link to this comment

The economic/industrial/business history of the USA is fascinating.  In the late 1800’s the USA had the robber barons, who without regulations, were able to amass vast fortunes (at that time) by gouging their customers/clients——remember there was no federal income tax.  Then in the early 1900’s the anti-trust laws were past and the pendulum seemed to have swung towards the consumers.  But this was fleeting in terms of economic time.  While the anti-trust laws did work for awhile, one industry did escape the legalities of anti-trust and that was the insurance industry.  They were exempt and they were able to carry the mantle of the robber barons.  Today the USA has returned to the yesteryear of the robber barons, but this time in collusion with the federal government——-some call it Fascism, some call it oligarchy, some call it plutocracy or a combination thereof, but in the case of the USA it is just plain greed.  Get the money while you can for as soon as a vast underclass is created then the engine for change will have started.  The change may be violent or passive only time will tell.

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By archivesDave, November 22, 2010 at 6:06 pm Link to this comment

G Anderson:
“and in the end, they will be gone, ..evaporating
before our eyes, we have won, no need for violence or
anger that belongs to them, and in the end they will
tear each other to pieces trying to blame each other
for the end of the Imperium, stay out of it.. but
prepare..”
OK my friend, let’s work backwards in your statement
here:
Prepare? What, pray tell do you mean???  From your
comment, it appears we just need to relax and be
patient…  I’m certain this was the attitude of
hundreds of thousands of Germans back in the mid 30s.
Do yourself a humongous favor and do a little reading
on Albert Pike (‘Morals and Dogma’)
Ordo Ab Chao is their MO so DO LOOK for things to get
FAR worse before these treasonous Corporatists get
their act together*; But get their act together THEY
WILL unless WE THE PEOPLE TAKE ACTION and I
congratulate Hedges for finally coming up with
some viable suggestions.

*GEORG HEGEL: Problem - Reaction - Solution.
(Start a fire on one end of town and sell fire
extinguishers on the other…)
Hitler: Reichstag
USA: “Remember The Maine” 
    Gulf of Tonkin

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By G.Anderson, November 22, 2010 at 5:38 pm Link to this comment

Yes, we are watching the demise of empire America, not from the outside but from within.

After decades of economic canabilism, the dollar is burning, and the workers who made it worth while, have no worth anymore.

For Decades, as well the corporations, devalued everyone…

However, outside corporate owned media, and corporate owned politics, there has been a revolt brewing. People have turned by the millions away, from the poison, spewed into every dimension of our lives. 

Coroporate poison is not just in every corporate thing we eat, and drink and wear. But also in our thinking. For many, that poisoned thinking may not be easy to stop, because the delusions it offers, are seductive. That poisoned thinking is just one more part of the devaluation we all have endured.

Our corporate poisoners try to make us believe that all our efforts to redress our grievences, will fail, and that they will remain in control of our lives.

But, it is they who are failing, flailing in a mountain of worthless paper that’s a monument to their greed.

and in the end, they will be gone, ..evaporating before our eyes, we have won, no need for violence or anger that belongs to them, and in the end they will tear each other to pieces trying to blame each other for the end of the Imperium, stay out of it.. but prepare..

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By Steve E, November 22, 2010 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

Thank you Mr. Hedges for your courage.

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By archivesDave, November 22, 2010 at 5:09 pm Link to this comment

Bravo Chris…

FINALLY some real meat AND SOLUTIONS I can ruminate.

Ventura - 2012

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By Mychael Barnes, November 22, 2010 at 5:00 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Whoa! I offered revolution last week as what now seems to be the only way to restore our freedom and democracy, whatever that means. I’m not patting myself on the back or looking for kudos. Mr. Hedges merely put it out there for all of us, in black and white. Who’s willing to give their life for this? Is there any path to non-violent revolution? Maybe on our side, but we all know how the evil ones will respond. One destroys a minor annoyance, like a mosquito on the arm around the campfire. People of OUR NATION, we’re the mosquito.
If we “act up”, and who’s to defend us. Let’s put on our collective thinking caps. Non-violence,to me is the preferred option. Violence on us is the corporate state’s only response. Saddle up everybody.
We’re in for a long and painful struggle.

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By grumps, November 22, 2010 at 4:55 pm Link to this comment

Check out Mondragon - people cooperating; now 120 000 strong ( I think) - that is power.

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By Nationalism, November 22, 2010 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If you’re serious, drop the nationalism.  “tens of millions of Americans” are no more important than billions of non-Americans who have been crushed over the centuries by the very system whose demise you now lament.  Nationalism is a tool that divides us, so quit it.  There’s nothing good about patriotism.

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By balkas, November 22, 2010 at 4:45 pm Link to this comment

fat chance anything happens for better for u.s servant class or ‘aliens’.
with possibly 9,999/per mille of americans deeming u.s constitution as
unemendable and unamendable, we can only expect worsening.

let’s be clear on one point: all msm columnists, clergy, ‘educators’, pols, judges,
generals, advisors, experts thunder: we are a nation of laws!
that’s the alpha and omega.

since i do not see anyone going to jail over breaking any law, one can assume
none had been broken! tnx

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By LiberateDC, November 22, 2010 at 4:43 pm Link to this comment

Some ideas to ponder:

1. Credit card companies practice unrestrained usury. Credit card debt is not collateralized. Want to scare the living hell out of the corrupt bankers who have destroyed millions of lives without missing a bonus? Organize a credit revolt - a movement of abused debtors who absolutely refuse to pay another nickel until interest rates are reduced to a maximum of 8% by law.

2. Our oligarchs are motivated by their own dream of utopia—the utopia of unrestricted exploitation. There are many ways we can refuse to cooperate, and inventing more should be a central focus of our most creative thinkers.

3. How can we meet our needs ourselves? The rudiments are in place—time banking, community gardens, small scale bartering, ride-sharing, energy and housing cooperatives, etc.

Sound pathetic and untenable? Think again. Millions of people are going to need alternatives. This creates an opportunity to reclaim community from the bottom up. It also means that small acts of mutual aid and solidarity will be priceless. These small acts can save lives and restore the human bonds that are the bedrock of genuine change.

Why are we not occupying and restoring abandoned buildings? They could provide housing for homeless families. It would lessen the misery of distraught parents and their deprived and frightened children. Why don’t we resist foreclosures by putting our bodies between the families and the banker’s agents who come to evict them? If I heard of such an action in my community, I’d show up.

If enough of us become Good Samaritans, we can take on the corporate state.

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By Alan McConnell, November 22, 2010 at 4:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Does anyone know how to get a hold of Mr
Hedges?  He blasts forth as in the article above,
or as he did when he spoke at Mr Kucinich’s
gathering at the Rayburn HOB back in April.  He is
angry.  We all are angry.  But some of us _act_,
with _effective_ action.

Pleease look at   http://www.waifllc.org  .  Three or
four of us raise money by selling our buttons,
and using the proceeds to buy the yard signs.  We
are on our ninth order of signs, and they can be
seen all over the D.C. area.  If we had a dozen
more helpers we would have the D.C. area covered
in signs.  And with a few more button sellers—
5 or 6—we would have enough money for bus
ads and radio spots as well.

I hope this message gets published, and will reach
Mr Hedges.  If any reader wishes to help with this
_effective_ action, the way to get in touch with
us is through the above web site.

Best wishes to all,

Alan McConnell, in Silver Spring MD

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By Jack E Lohman, November 22, 2010 at 4:30 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Chris hits the key problem: our corrupt political system. THAT got us here and nothing will change until we get the legal bribes (campaign contributions) out of politics.

Nothing else matters. Fix the corruption first, then you can move forward.

Politicians spend taxpayer dollars because they ARE PAID to spend taxpayer dollars, and robbing the SSI fund (as just one example) gives them the cash needed to attract campaign dollars.

Our problem is NOT government, and it is not R’s or D’s. It *IS* that government is owned by the special interests that want in the taxpayer’s pockets.

CEOs want short-term profits to increase their already massive salaries, and are willing to share those profits with the politicians that made it all happen. Thus NAFTA and other laws are passed that enable outsourcing to countries with wage scales one-tenth ours. And our country crashes while China and India flourish.

As a former CEO my company would not have survived if I had an employee or board of directors who took money on the side and gave away company assets in return. Our country can’t survive this corruption either.

So nothing changes. We elect a new group of politicians and the Fat Cats simply re-direct their bribes as we continue down our spiral. Only a national revolution will get our attention, but then it’s too late. And all because our politicians refuse to stop the bribery they benefit from.

If politicians are going to be beholden to their funders, those funders should be the taxpayers. And at $5 per taxpayer per year it would be a bargain. Even at 100 times that. We MUST demand that our senators and representative pass the bill at: http://fairelectionsnow.org/about-bill

Jack Lohman …
http://MoneyedPoliticians.net

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