Bartlet for President!

 

 

“The government you elect is the government you deserve”

 

—Thomas Jefferson

 

For those of you who don’t recognize the title of this essay, you clearly weren’t fans of what I consider perhaps the best television series in my lifetime i.e. The West Wing.

 

So, what say you about Thomas Jefferson’s words above? Do you feel that we deserve Trump? Could it be the laws of karma paying us back for neglecting our fellow men & women for so long? America’s imperial crimes against humanity have been going on for quite some time yet most Americans deny that we’re an empire. But all one has to do is read several articles by Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, or Michael Parenti to begin to wake-up from our national stupor.

The greatest intellectual alive & my pen-pal since 2006, Noam Chomsky

 

Of course, reading is no longer fashionable in the U.S. & people prefer to get their “news” and information from watching videos. And something like 60% or more of Americans get their news from Facebook of all places. In case you haven’t heard it yet, Facebook doesn’t fact-check the news posts & the company Cambridge Analytica basically targeted tens of thousands of Americans it knew would be susceptible to the propaganda posts supporting Trump & defaming Hillary Clinton. In a nutshell, we can thank Mark Zuckerberg’s insatiable greed for giving us Trump.

Well, I mention these things in the context of this essay because it dawned on me a while back of how wide a difference there is between the president as played by Martin Sheen on The West Wing & our real-life president. Hell, there’s a Grand Canyon of difference between the two.

 

Practically every single day, Trump says or does something even worse than the previous day. This moron has no sense of decency, proper behavior, manners, or tact whatsoever. In fact, I find it very hard to believe he’s anywhere near as rich as he claims to be given such behavior? Who would do business with such a cretin?

 

Unlike Trump, Sheen is a truly humble man & he has been asked by fans several times since The West Wing ended, if he’d run for president in real life but he consistently tells his fans; “you’re confusing celebrity with credibility.” Unfortunately for America & the rest of the world, Trump has deluded himself into believing just the opposite of what Sheen knows to be the truth. And roughly a third of the American public have clearly made that serious mistake as well. I refer to him as Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan, in other words, the worst that America has to offer.

 

By way of contrast, reflect on these descriptors of the American president played by Sheen with all that you’ve witnessed so far of Trump’s behavior & intelligence;

 

  • Manifest integrity (clearly apparent to the sight or understanding; obvious; steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code)
  • Quick witticisms (a clever or witty remark)
  • Fierce intellect (a person of extraordinary intelligence)

& Compassionate stoicism (a feeling of deep sympathy & sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering; stoicism (The philosophy asserts that virtue (such as wisdom) is happiness and judgment should be based on behavior, rather than words.)

 

I hope that you weren’t eating or drinking anything while you read these descriptions of Jeb Bartlet & contrasting them with Trump, because you might’ve choked on your food or spit out your drink?

 

Okay, here’s my brief take on these four attributes in relation to Trump, the creature from the black lagoon:

 

Oh yeah, he’s clearly a very moral & ethical person; “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful [women]—I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything … Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

 

As for “quick witticisms,” Yeah, right! If you pay attention when he speaks, he almost always stumbles to find the words to express what he wants to say & I’ve never heard a single, witty remark come from this orangutan whose wit is on par with middle-school boys in a locker room bragging about their imaginary sexual exploits.

 

Of course, according to the humble Trump, he’s the smartest person who ever walked the face of the earth. Don’t you see it every time he speaks? If not, you must be just another loser like myself. And this is why he speaks at a fourth-grade level & has threatened to sue every single school he’s ever attended if they dare to release his grades. He’s just so humble.

 

As for compassion, it just oozes from Trump’s every pore. Remember his imitation of the handicapped journalist at one of his rallies? You might also care to note that the Trump organization was busted for theft of funds collected in one of his “charities.” Yep! He “shifted” money from the kids’ cancer charity he was running, into his own pocket. https://www.forbes.com/sites/danalexander/2017/06/06/how-donald-trump-shifted-kids-cancer-charity-money-into-his-business/#7eaa8a36b4a3

 

And note, this is an article from Forbes magazine, not exactly a liberal rag.

 

Furthermore, consider this sampling of the issues the T.V. president, Jeb Bartlet, wrestled with & try to imagine how Trump would deal with them. Trump doesn’t have a clue about anything let alone would he have a fraction of the intelligence, strategic ability, or the moral or intellectual fortitude required to deal with these issues. Just reflect on how he has capitulated to Russia on every single issue that has come up related to Russia. He’s clearly Putin’s lap-dog & has sided with the Russians against our own intelligence agencies every single time.

 

Exploration of Real-World Issues on The West Wing

 

 

Other issues explored in The West Wing include:

 

 

And what bothers me even more than Trump being such an obvious moron is that roughly a third of our citizens believe him even though he is clearly a habitual, compulsive, pathological, & narcissistic liar. For his supporters to be so perversely & willfully blind and ignorant to this fraud tells us far more about who they are than who Trump is.

 

We stand on the brink of abyss & we are staring into the face of Armageddon & the good “Christian evangelicals or fundamentalists” are praying that we do blow up the planet. Moreover, the “Christians” who haven’t gone totally bat-shit crazy, sit silently on the sidelines as the whack-jobs keep growing more powerful by the day.

 

For the better part of his adult life, Martin Sheen has not only been talking the talk but also walking the walk & has been arrested over 66 times as of 2009. Here is a partial list of some of the real-life issues that Mr. Sheen has been fighting for or against & again, try to imagine Trump doing likewise or even knowing a fuckin’ thing about them let alone giving a shit about them because he only cares about his wealth & has turned the White House into a cat house where everything is for sale including the prestige it used to symbolize.

 

  • Against the war in Iraq
  • Opposition to the School of the Americas (where we train the Death Squads of Dictators around the world)
  • Against apartheid
  • Against racism
  • Against homelessness
  • Against Nuclear weapons testing i.e. Reagan’s S.D.I. (Star Wars program) or “Strategic Defense Initiative
  • In support of the Farm Worker’s boycotts i.e. Cesar Chavez
  • For gun control
  • For “Earth First!” (environmental group)
  • For Justice for Bhopal

 

Who would you rather have as our real-life president, the phony “celebrity” created from a t.v. script about a self-made billionaire who never loses in any of his business deals—even though he has failed at many of his business ventures & doesn’t own most of the buildings with his name on them but the suckers believe he does—and who tweets his racist, hateful, divisive remarks daily?

 

This third-rate actor, Reagan was a step ahead of him because he was at least a second-rate actor.Trump is like the thief who was invited to dinner & ended-up stealing all the silverware & fine China,  but he is robbing the Federal Treasury & this is called “Draining the Swamp?”

 

Trump has opened the doors to every agency established to look out for the welfare of our Republic & our citizens & welcomed in every corporate pig to gorge themselves to their hearts’ content. You may think the World-wide economic collapse of 2008 was scary (and we’re still suffering from its effects) wait till Trump has finished with his raping, pillaging, & plundering of all that is America.

 

We have the reality of an unreal malignant narcissist & sociopath in charge of our government & our well-being, give me the t.v. actor, Martin Sheen any time of the day or night. He is light-years ahead of Trump ethically, morally, intellectually. Sheen is a man who has fought all his life for true democracy & is a principled and moral man of the highest caliber.

 

It’s real simple my fellow citizens if you can just step outside the bubble of propaganda we’ve been fed all our lives. We, the taxpayers, must face the fact that no matter how much of our blood, sweat, & tears we shed as we work our lives away for the corporate cockroaches, it will never be enough to satisfy them.  And no matter how loyal we are to those corporations that rule our lives like the private tyrannies they de facto are, they have absolutely no loyalty in return & will throw us on the garbage dump the minute they find it more profitable to move to some third world nation where they can pay workers a couple of bucks per day with no environmental or labor regulations whatsoever.

 

And “our” tax dollars go to feeding the military/industrial complex that President Eisenhower warned us of but its appetite is insatiable.And we are told ad infinitum that we must give the 1% er corporations more tax breaks because it’ll stimulate the economy. Yeah, it’ll stimulate your ass as they butt-fuck you & close their plants down here to go overseas & do some more stimulating of those poor suckers. (this is known as the “Trickle-down theory” or where they piss on us & tell us it’s raining—invented by Reagan, the darling of the conservative cockroach class.) And they tax us even more & tell us they aren’t, it’s just our imagination i.e. Trump’s massive tax giveaway to the rich.

And even with our military might, equal to the rest of the world’s nations’ military budgets combined, we are the most fearful people on the planet i.e. the terrorists are coming, the terrorists are coming. (Note: they had to replace the old boogey-man, “the communists are coming, the communists are coming” with something to keep the trillions flowing into their greasy paws)

 

And no matter how much we are forced to “give” in the form of our tax dollars, it is never enough or it’s just barely enough for the status quo i.e. to maintain our military superiority, but there’s never enough left over for trivial things like decent & affordable housing for all of us who pay our taxes or healthy food that we can afford or for us to be able to rest easy knowing that our families will receive the best medical care available no matter what illness, disease, or accident befalls them.

 

You see, my imaginary reader, the greed of the 1% guarantees this status quo as an absolute fact because they write the laws that we must obey but not them. And the police as well as the military are their enforcers. Step out of line or protest and you will be jailed or killed. This is what’s laughingly known as freedom & democracy.

 

In conclusion, my intellectual as well as moral hero is Noam Chomsky. And by-the-way, if you’re interested in a truly revolutionary education i.e. a liberating education, a reading of Chomsky’s work would be like earning your Ph. D. in political science, history, philosophy, etc. etc. etc.

 

Chomsky is turning 91 years of age on December 7, 2019 and he has spent the last several years warning the world of the two most critical issues facing humanity i.e. climate destruction & the ever-growing threat of a nuclear exchange. Oh yeah, I almost forgot to mention that Chomsky has been referred to as the “most important intellectual alive & the only person in the top ten most quoted people throughout Western history,” and this list includes The Bible, Plato, & Aristotle. Not too shabby in any intelligent person’s book!

 

It would also do us well to remember that ignorance in a court of law isn’t a valid or legal defense nor is it in reality. So, my fellow citizens, it is up to each of us to decide, to choose as to whether we’ll go along willingly with our continued enslavement (yeah, even though you suffer from the delusion of freedom because you have lots of nice, shiny playthings) and our very real destruction or do you choose to stand-up on your hind-legs like a true man or woman & scream; No! I will not go gentle into that dark night. (Dylan Thomas)

 

Let me leave you with this quote by H.G. Wells whom some call the father of science-fiction. I’d argue that Jules Verne is a real close second, if not the first?

 

“It’s becoming more and more of a race between education and catastrophe.”

Addendum

I have watched this series because of its superior intellectual content, several times over. Especially when I am hungry for something to watch that I can really sink my teeth into. Yeah, I know, I sound like one of those “horrible East Coast elitists” who look down their noses at you. Well, so be it because you are acting like the morons they think you are!

Why? Because you watch such utter crap like “The Walking Dead,” and the countless “reality t.v. shows” that offend any intelligent persons’ intelligence. Yes, these “social critics” are insulting but they are mere distractions. Your anger should be targeted against the true enemies of the people, the corporate cockroaches.

And no, I’m not defending these effete social critics but I am advising you to not run & hide & hate them but rather to arm yourselves intellectually & do battle with them, standing on your hind-legs. Let me remind you, I grew-up in Paramount (1964-1983 approx.) though you never really leave home. Yep! A poor, industrially-zoned town across the wide, L.A. river-bed from the infamous Compton, you know, the home of that insignificant gang called The Crips?  Clearly I’m just another one of those fuckin’ elitists!

Reality Deniers

“You’re saying it’s a falsehood and Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that.” —Kellyanne Conway, January 22, 2017 (re: Spicer’s claim that Trump’s inauguration was the largest ever)

Well Mrs. Conway, as Gertrude Stein would inform you; A fact is a fact is a fact. And if you’d like to show America how sure you are of your alternative world, why don’t you go to the top of a skyscraper & step off the ledge to prove that the Laws of Gravity are just an alternative fact or opinion as well?

This coming from the woman whose official title is Counselor to the President but more accurately, she’s his apologist & personal minister of propaganda i.e. Joseph Goebbels reincarnated.

David Fitzsimmons / Arizona Star
David Fitzsimmons / Arizona Star

We have arrived at this fantastically depressing day in U.S. history for a myriad of reasons but two of the most prominent factors are the rise of the “Reality television shows” phenomenon that began 20 years ago along with the rise of our own version of Russia’s “Pravda” i.e. FOX “News.”

Everyone knows that politicians are liars but at least they used to be considerably more restrained in the quantity & quality of their deceptions. But our narcissistic & totally unconcerned about reality bully-boy in the White House doesn’t care about facts & has been allowed to get away with habitual lying his entire life because daddy always protected him.

With Trump, lying has risen to another level, beyond the rational universe & this is why his base consists of born-again Bible thumpers who pray for the end of the world & those who just love his vicious & heartless attacks on everyone not like them i.e. liberals, gays, Mexicans, Muslims, the handicapped, intellectuals, democrats, journalists, women, etc. etc. etc. And of course, the greedy corporate cockroaches who are making out like bandits thanks to Trump’s tax give a ways to the super rich while slashing every program that offers a bit of help to the poor, the working class, the middle class, etc. And the 35% to 39% or so who are Trump’s die-hard fans are so stupid, they don’t care that he’s taking away their food stamps & etc. They’ll still be singing his praises as they climb out of their cardboard “homes” on Skid Row & they’ll continue to curse Obama’s very existence. trump5

But before I wander too far afield, I want to highlight the elephant in the room that is so glaringly obvious because it’s been so consistent that most of us now see it as “normal,” i.e. Trump’s habitual lying. He just recently passed the 14,000 lies mark & it doesn’t mean shit to his base. Now that’s some kind of willful ignorance! I wonder if these Trump fans tell their kids it’s okay to lie? Or do they simply ignore their kids’ lying as they do Trump’s and say; Oh, isn’t he cute?

Trump has said things & ten minutes later when he’s been called on a lie, he’ll lie about the lie and claim that it’s the fake news. Yep! I guess the “fake news” and the “Deep State” (C.I.A., F.B.I. N.S.A., etc.) are so fast & powerful that within ten minutes of Donald saying something, they can alter what he said & accuse him of lying? The poor baby is just so picked on.

Think about it, they’d have to hack into every news station in the country, rewrite every reporters’ notes from Donny’s press conference, hack into every phone, video camera, etc. all just because they hate him for no valid reason? It can’t possibly be that there is no plot to get him but that two-thirds of the country actually detest him because of his vile & vulgar behavior, his racism, his hate speech, & his crimes (thousands of them over the years & that’s why he’s maintain a platoon of lawyers all his business life), can it?

This is clearly denial of reality on a scale we’ve never witnessed before and what does it say about us as citizens of the supposedly most free & democratic nation on Earth? Okay, it’s clearly time to go back to school—pun intended—because as a country, we’re pretty damn dumb! And a common thread that will wind through this essay is the subject of “control.”

In the documentary, “Citizen Four” which is about Edward Snowden’s decision to no longer be a pawn in the NSA’s illegal spying on all Americans, he understated the issue of our freedom as very much relevant to the NSA’s unconstitutional activities. I think he was going overboard to not come off as a conspiracy nut & that’s why he simply said at one point in the film; “It’s about control.”

And control is what our public education system is all about whether you are aware of it or not and whether you accept this accusation or not. It’s real simple in its broad strokes i.e. the government basically follows the wishes of the 1% & the 1% want workers who are obedient & just smart enough to run the machinery (both physical machines & the operation of its companies i.e. accountants, salesmen, administrators, office workers, etc.) to keep their profits coming in but not too clever because they might lead the workers to organizing, protesting, boycotting, & worst of all, sit down strikes where the workers take over the plants, factories, etc.

Again, it’s important to not get off on those fun, grand conspiracies like Trump loves to because they actually serve the interests of the 1% by distracting & confusing the workers & the voters. Gore Vidal put it very succinctly, “They don’t need to conspire, they all think alike.” And unlike Trump who simply makes claims that he can’t back up, I can prove my expertise when it comes to the field of education. I graduated high school, spent 14 years going to college (dropping in & out several times before earning my B.A. in English literature), have collected a personal library of approx. 10,000 books (have probably read at least 700 of them), and have been writing for over 30 years. And last but not least, was reading at the 11th grade, sixth month level when I was in the sixth grade. What level do you think Trump reads at with that impressive & articulate rhetorical style of his? Moreover, why did Trump threaten to sue any school he’s ever attended if they released his grades to anyone if he’s so “brilliant” and a “stable genius?” Are we to believe that he’s humble when it comes to his grades and that’s why he doesn’t want them released? Yeah right, the guy who brags about himself everyday & every way he can. No matter what the subject or topic that is being discussed, Trump always finds a way to turn it into an opportunity to brag about his legendary accomplishments—almost always fantasies which are the product of his little pea-brain—yet his “base” just laps it up? Guess Goebbels was right? The bigger the lie and the more often you tell it, the more the people will accept it as truth & it becomes fact. (for those of you who don’t remember, Goebbels was Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda)

Regarding our public education system, in a nutshell, it too has been invaded & to a very large extent, has been coopted by the 1% as well as those good ol’ “Christian evangelicals” who have turned a blind-eye to all Trump’s sins because he gives them lip-service “support” in their war against the evil secularists who are destroying Christian values. I wrote a book on this subject should you care to check the veracity of my claims?

Let’s return to the subject of the Bible-thumpers who are the overwhelming majority of Trump supporters. These people have been denying reality all their lives & trying to reach them on an intellectual or intelligent basis is about as pointless as a screen-door in a submarine. They’re infamous for their closed-minds. But what’s really scary about them is the fact that they actually pray for the end of the world & this too is why they love Trump i.e. he may just make it happen?

I was re-watching a documentary about Gore Vidal recently and he reminded me of this dangerous delusion of the evangelicals or “Christian” fundamentalists. We’re so worried about Muslim jihadists? We should be more worried about our “Christian” jihadists who have one of their own, Mike Pence, as vice president of the United States. If Trump were to be marched out of the White House in handcuffs, Pence becomes president & yet his own wife won’t trust him alone with another woman if she’s not there? So much for their faith between themselves as man & wife but we’re supposed to trust him with the nuclear launch codes? Be afraid! Be very afraid!

Gore Vidal pointed out; “39% of the American public believe in the death of the Earth by Nuclear Fire and in Rapture. Among the 39% is Ronald Reagan.”

the unholy alliance of two thieves!

I know, silly me to worry about such mundane things as the Christian loonies praying for the end of humanity. But these perversions of what passes for human beings are very active politically from their local schoolboards up to the presidency. You see, I used to be like most everyone I knew and didn’t give a damn about politics until Reagan became president.

I didn’t pay attention to the news or read about politics but I guess through osmosis or something & growing up in California while Reagan was governor, I knew we were in serious danger when he was elected president. And now we have Trump who makes Reagan look like a boy scout.

Here’s a flashback for you regarding this subject; my beloved wife, Jeri (who passed away over six years ago now) and me were on our honeymoon in Europe & we were visiting Paris. We were in some crowded public square when a reporter approached us & he had a camera man with him. He asked if we were Americans & I said yes. (guess he could tell from the goose-down coats we were wearing?) Anyway, the reporter said that he was like the Dan Rather of Czechoslovakia & he wanted to know our opinion of Reagan’s talk of fighting a limited nuclear war in Europe. I simply said that I think he’s a moron & he scares the Hell out of me. And when the camera man turned off his camera, the journalist said to me something like; “Thank God not all Americans are stupid, I just interviewed another American couple who thought fighting a limited nuclear war in Europe was a good idea.”

Commander and Dunce in Chief?

Think about it my imaginary reader i.e. how can so-called Christians believe in Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount” which I believe all that a true Christian need practice & at the same time pray for the death & destruction of the overwhelming majority of life, plant & animal, the wiping-out of the world’s forests, mountains, rivers, oceans, etc.? Talk about cognitive dissonance, Jesus Christ!

Our Fabricator in Chief, Donald Trump’s level of ignorance is wickedly scary because he asks questions like;

Trump said he might use nuclear weapons and questioned why we would make them if we wouldn’t use them

Trump said he was open to nuking Europe because it’s a “big place”

Trump said that “you want to be unpredictable” with nuclear weapons

Trump said he wasn’t that worried about more countries getting nukes since “it’s not like, gee whiz, nobody has them”

Trump had no idea what the “nuclear triad” was

Trump said he’d be OK with a nuclear arms race in Asia

Donald Trump ‘suggested dropping nuclear bombs to divert hurricanes’

Yep! just the kind of guy to make you feel all warm, safe, & cozy in your bed at night, right? I’m old enough to remember when the Iranians took those American hostages & people had bumper stickers on their cars saying; “Nuke Iran!” and it scared me then as it does now that people could be so fucking stupid! They can’t seem to get it through their ignorant heads that the radiation released when a nuclear bomb goes off doesn’t just stay within the borders of the country it exploded in. I guess Chernobyl taught all these sorts of morons nothing?

The radiation that was released as a result of the Chernobyl disaster i.e. accident, traveled around the globe poisoning food, plants, animals, & people. Milk supplies were contaminated. I think that herds of caribou in Finland were contaminated? How does this sit with you reality deniers? Would it concern you if your children or your grandchildren were exposed to potentially life-threatening or cancer-causing levels of radioactivity? I used to work in the field of industrial x-ray back in my late teens & my early 20s with a step-dad of mine at the time and the more I learned about it, the more scared I became and I eventually quit working with this stuff that lasts for thousands of years & can’t be safely stored or destroyed.

Perhaps you’re a member of the trendy, New Age Deniers? I danced around the edges of that cult too. There was an explosion of New Age gurus & Pop Psychologists that began in the 1970s & every bookstore that I walked into, I made a bee-line for the New Age & Pop Psychology section.

I was disillusioned with the common wisdom of my elders i.e. get a job & stick with it no matter whether you like it or not. I was seeking a purpose or a calling and I hoped to find a community where I felt I belonged. I hitchhiked up & down the West coast dozens of times, checked out a few communes, hitched across the U.S., and made several trips to Europe, sometimes with only a one-way ticket and a couple hundred bucks in my pocket.

Again, and again, the ugly, harsh realities of life smacked me in the face. After reading dozens & dozens of these New Age books & Pop Psychology books, perhaps hundreds of them, I began to realize that they were offering simplistic, easy answers to many of the most challenging philosophical questions that the greatest philosophers of Western & Eastern Philosophy and Religion had been wrestling with their entire lives. I saw what an insult their pablum panaceas were to men & women of serious & honest intellectual inquiry. And what made me sadder yet was that the overwhelming majority of these self-described spiritual seekers & pop psychologist gurus were just in it for the money.

It wasn’t until around the time that I met my sweet lady, my Rock of Gibraltar, my wife Jeri that I stumbled upon philosophy and this awoke my life-long passion for knowledge in the hope of finding wisdom & peace. Philosophy didn’t offer answers in popular, best sellers in the New Age industry on subjects like Rolfing, Est, primal screaming, etc. And I came across the “work” of Gurdjieff which was extremely alluring & made Scientology look like the Mickey Mouse Club. In fact, I attended a meeting of Gurdjieff followers in Portland, Oregon and they came very close to seducing me with their appeals to my ego but thankfully, at that time in my life, my heart, mind, & spirit were very strong and I trusted my gut instinct to get away from them.

And no, it wasn’t melodramatic, I simply realized what was happening i.e. the meeting was held in a mansion in an exclusive part of town. There were expensive paintings, sculpture, vases, rugs, tapestries, etc. and we sat at a long dining-like table. I learned that I was amongst doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc. and I was just an unemployed hippie sleeping on a cousin’s couch. But when they said that we had to give 10% of our monthly income or $100 per month that I knew the game was rigged. After a little research, I learned that they were all over the world from Newport Beach in Orange County to Tokyo, London, Paris, Madrid, Rome, etc. and they were always located in the most expensive parts of these world capitals.

I read books on their guru who had died in 1949 and he was quite frank about his “shearing of the sheep” as he put it. He drank, ate the best food, womanized, etc. Trump would’ve loved him. He held orgies with the rich & privileged like Trump’s buddy, Jeffrey Epstein. And the rich gave him fortunes for his guidance in the pursuit of enlightenment.

birds of a feather (birds of prey) flock together

Anyway, I said to myself, Nah! I can smell a con artist when I see one and Trump is a con man of unbelievable hubris but he only gets away with his level of ignorance & grifting with those who are the least educated & therefore easier to deceive & manipulate.

And speaking of deception & manipulation, another reason why I finally quit Facebook for good was all the drivel that the New Agers keep posting. I was snide & sarcastic to many of them and would often comment, Thanks for the New Age Hallmark card. What angers me about this “movement,” is that like so much other crap in our lives, New Age has become a sort of religion for the young & middle aged who are so confident that they have the answers that their “philosophy” can basically be put as “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!”

Yeah, right! Our planet is dying & we have a sociopath who is running a garage sale out of the White House. Trump’s egregious disregard for any semblance of respectability for the institution of the presidency is beyond the pale. But these New Agers smugly sit back in their yoga pants eating their tofu & drinking their veggie smoothies. They act so above it all and don’t lift a finger to try to stop the thieves like Trump or Wall St. One big cop-out & they have the audacity to look down their noses at people like myself who believe we all have a responsibility to fight the system!

This brings me to one of the most critical issues that far too many of us are in denial about i.e. climate destruction & the death of our planet. The oil industry, EXXON in particular did their own study and have known for over 30 years of the massive destruction they are causing our environment i.e. pollution that kills not only the creatures dependent on the oceans but also people.

Once again, it’s abundantly clear that the almighty dollar wins out yet again. Let’s see the mother fuckers as they’re dying from lack of air, food, & water and ask them, aren’t you glad you made all that money? The oil corporations & especially the Koch brothers, have spent & continue to spend something like over a hundred million dollars every year in spreading fake news, fake scientific reports, & fake advertising denying that the polar ice caps are melting & etc.

Jehovah’s Witnesses are wondering, perhaps praying for this?

The overwhelming majority of climate scientists around the globe are in agreement about the seriousness of this but the powers that be pay off a few whores in academia and its; What climate change? Do you remember that when they built the Titanic, all the experts & engineers swore that it was unsinkable? What do you think was going through their minds as all those people were dying in the frigid waters of the Atlantic? Is that what it’s going to take for the climate deniers to face reality?

The reality is that we’ve elected to the highest position in America and the world because of our power, a failed businessman who just keeps on lying no matter how many times & ways he’s called out. Trump is the master denier of reality because if he ever faced reality or real consequences for even a fraction of the crimes he’s committed, he’d be locked-up for the rest of his days.

it’s pretty bad when even the fake news network is calling you out for fake news

Think about it. Trump stars in a fake reality T.V. series that the producers freely admit it was i.e. it was all staged & Trump insisted that every time his name was mentioned, they had to refer to him as a billionaire. Why would someone insist on such a thing if they were truly a billionaire? It’s obviously to all but the willfully ignorant that Trump really isn’t a billionaire, he just keeps claiming he is because he wants us to believe he is. This is why he won’t release his tax records.

Getting back to “reality t.v.,” I remember 20 years ago when the phenomenon started & I said to anyone who would listen, wait a minute, we’re supposed to believe that this artificial or fake t.v. show is real? I always suggested that we just live our lives because they’re real i.e. if you lose your job, you may then lose your home, etc. How’s that for reality?

P.T. Barnum was so right when he declared that there’s a sucker born every minute! Trump’s grand i.e. the biggest & best in the world, etc. casinos failed & that’s not an easy thing to do because casinos are cash generating businesses i.e. people rarely stop gambling no matter how much they win & they then end up losing it all back and then some to the casino. But Mr. Business even fucked that up to say nothing about all his other failures & most notably his fake university which he had to settle out of court.

I look forward to the time when Trump’s Duck Dynasty Klan fans are hit across the face with a two by four of reality and realize what absolute morons they were to ever believe a single word out of his mouth. But America is world famous for its escape from reality i.e. Hollywood, the “Christian Right” and its belief in Armageddon & those evil people are doing everything they can to ensure the end of the world. And they love Trump because he’s doing his best to make their reality our reality. The extremists on the “Christian Right” are every bit as delusional & dangerous as the extremists in the Muslim faith who want to kill all who aren’t Muslim. And our politicians & military leaders have done an excellent job of really pissing off over a billion Muslims around the world with minor little things like Obama’s illegal & immoral Drone Warfare program.

I understand why the majority of Trump voters are so angry at the government though they have near total amnesia when it comes to the hundreds of good things our government does. But every time you meet a Trump voter, one of the first things out of their mouths is; “He tells it like it is.”

Well no, he doesn’t tell it like it is, not even close. I think what this statement is really saying is that they feel that he speaks like they do? So, they’re really insulting themselves & admitting that they’re ignorant racists, homophobes, misogynists, and totally lacking in compassion. That’s something to be proud of?

After three years of the Trump presidency, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s totally pointless to argue with a Trump supporter. They truly do live in an alternative universe. You may as well try to convince a “Christian” fundamentalist that there is no God.

So, what are we to do given the reality of where we’re at? I wish I could offer you some simple, concrete steps to follow but then I’d be just another reality denier. The fact is, we’re some of the stupidest people on this planet but we’re not supposed to say that. Everywhere I turn, I hear “liberal” apologists saying to not call people stupid because that won’t help. Yeah? Let’s play nice while the other side is trying to kill us or at least chase us out of our own country for daring to call a spade a spade?

I feel that part of the reason why or how we got here is because we’ve been too worried about being “politically correct.” We’ve been denying & ignoring our pathetic public education system for decades & now we believe that turning our schools into charter schools where they can teach religion & pray in school is going to make things better? Yeah right! Just what we need, some more delusional, reality denying Bible thumpers.

I am becoming more & more cynical the older I get & the more I learn about this sick, twisted phenomenon of the cult of Trump. The reality that millions of so-called “Christians,” love him when he is the absolute antithesis of their so-called values & principles, shows how hollow, hypocritical, & worthless their beliefs are.

I also wish that our so-called news organizations were giving us the facts but they too have sold their souls for the corporate dollars & their shot at celebrity. Edward R. Murrow must be rolling over in his grave at how pathetically low we’ve fallen in terms of journalistic integrity.

remember the little boy who cried wolf (Trump) Well, I told you!

Moreover, there’s no country we can escape to that I know of? This wave of fascism led by Trump is spreading around the globe & people are being killed in ever greater numbers by their presidents, dictators, & despots whom are Donald’s idols, especially Putin. I wonder at times what percentage of our military personnel admire Trump & what percentage of them are reviled by him as much as I am?

And here’s another bit of reality for you, especially to all my Trump friends, China is a little behind us in terms of AI (Artificial Intelligence) technology but they’re definitely ahead of us in terms of their implementation of AI to suppress & oppress their citizens i.e. they have more cameras watching their citizens than any other nation and they use facial recognition software. In fact, China is holding over a million Uighurs in what is basically a secret concentration camp. It has been referred to as one of the world’s largest, open-air prisons.

Tell me again what we fought the Vietnam war for? I thought it was to prevent the Chinese from taking Vietnam but now they’ve adopted a sort of blend of Communism & Capitalism and Trump just loves their leader as he does that mass murderer in charge of North Korea.

If you give a shit, you can check out the recent documentary on AI on PBS’s Frontline series & it’s sure to pick up your spirits. Remember, we mustn’t be sad as we circle the drain. Don’t worry, be happy!

So, we have China as our trading partner & note that the overwhelming majority of Walmart’s products come from China & Walmart is supposedly the world’s biggest retailer. And we have Russia with Putin the ex-KGB officer (think C.I.A.) who poisons his political enemies or has his Russian mafia take care of them and we have Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan in charge here. What could go wrong?

All three of these powers have already unleashed Orwell’s Big Brother on their citizens & note that America has the largest per capita number of prisoners in the world. Edward Snowden rang the warning bell not unlike Paul Revere who warned us that the British were coming & for that true patriotic act, he is now hunted by America & forced to live in exile in sunny old Russia.

By-the-way, out of 194 nations on this planet, the U.S. ranks 124th in terms of literacy (ability of its citizens to read & write) but we’re number one when it comes to military might. In fact, our military budget (yeah, right. Since when have they ever had to stick to a budget) is very close to being equal to all the other nations’ military budgets combined.

So why is it that we’re amongst the most scared people on the planet? It couldn’t be that the politicians at the behest of their corporate masters, have drummed their war propaganda into our minds from cradle to grave since the end of WWII so they could keep the trillions of our tax dollars flowing into their bank accounts, could it?

Nah! I’m just denying the reality of our world, right? Ask around & see how many Americans are even aware of the fact that were it not for the Russians fighting the Germans on the Eastern Front, we would’ve lost WWII. And the Russians lost over 20 million people in WWII. But as soon as the war ended, the Russians became our enemy overnight. Remember the McCarthy trials of Communists? And here’s another fact for you reality deniers; Trump’s mentor, the guy who taught him the importance of being ruthless in attacking everyone who criticizes you & to always deny, deflect, & distract, was none other than Roy Cohn. Yeah, a real swell guy who mostly represented mafia kingpins & introduced Donald to many of his clients who became helpful to Donald as he created his empire with daddy’s money. And Cohn was McCarthy’s right-hand man in the un-Constitutional trials that destroyed the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of actors, writers, directors, producers, etc. in the good old days of the 1950s. And NO! This isn’t a conspiracy theory, it’s a FACT!

In the final analysis my reality deniers, it doesn’t matter whether it’s communist China who enslaves us or Capitalist America who enslaves us because we are hopelessly brain-dead and you might as well enjoy your myriad of choices of conspiracy theories that Trump generously shares with his cult members to distract you from the reality of what an inhuman creature from the Black Lagoon he truly is!

the breakfast of champions? Yeah, right Bart

And what an amazing series of coincidences that Trump defends Putin at every turn or his actions benefit the Russians against our so-called values & principle? We’re not supposed to connect the dots that trace back decades of Russian mafia figures have been giving Trump loans when American banks no longer will or that the Russians are among Trump’s biggest customers when it comes to selling his apartments in Trump Tower. No, it would just be too unreal to imagine that we could have a traitor in the Oval Office, right?

So, You Don’t Care about NSA Mass Surveillance?

 

 

 

“Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.”[17]

“When you say, ‘I have nothing to hide,’ you’re saying, ‘I don’t care about this right.’

—Edward Snowden

 

Mr. Snowden goes on to say; “The way rights work is, the government has to justify its intrusion into your rights, and nobody needs to justify why they ‘need’ a right.” Some of you may remember that other little document our government is founded on i.e. The Bill of Rights? Or how about that other golden oldie, The Declaration of Independence?

 

How is it that one minute, Americans can be boasting to the world, We’re the greatest nation on earth, we have freedom & democracy and our soldiers have given their lives in defense of freedom & democracy, & the next minute they shrug their shoulders and say, I have nothing to hide so I don’t care if the government spies on me?

Fascism’s Friendly Big Brother

 

Another ignorant response I get from probably 90% or more of the people I speak to when I tell that that I write about politics is; “Oh, I’m not interested in politics.” These responses sadden me every time I hear them because they show how lazy people have become mentally. But most importantly, what they reveal if we look below their glib surface is that they’re de facto saying that they don’t care that their family or friends who died in the never-ending wars that America is embroiled in because remember; you don’t care about your right to privacy, the Bill of Rights, the U.S. Constitution, or politics.

 

For the past decade or better, I try to tactfully point out when people say they’re not interested in politics; So, what you’re saying is that you don’t care if the company you worked for & given your blood, sweat, & tears to for years, maybe decades, just shuts its doors & moves overseas where they can pay workers $1 an hour or a couple of bucks per day. And you don’t care if the government allows your company to invest in hedge funds with your pension plan & the hedge fund company loses your pension betting on Wall St.

 

Or you don’t mind if your company cuts back or completely eliminates your health insurance & if you or your loved ones get sick, oh well, too bad! The G.O.P. spends millions on their public advertising propaganda against “socialized medicine,” to keep the public fooled and vote against their own best interests. The Republicans are consistent in their agenda & you can bet your last dollar that behind every bit of legislation they’re for or against, it’s because they want the freedom to rape, pillage, & plunder us to their hearts’ content. (What am I saying? They don’t have hearts & Trump is prima facie evidence of this)

 

I could go on citing example after example but I feel that I’ve made my point. Returning to the subject of our freedoms, one of the things that really pisses me off is the fact that in perhaps the majority of bars, taverns, pubs, etc. across this home of the brave & land of the free, we are forbidden to speak about politics.

 

As I pointed out above, politics affects every one of our lives whether we realize it or not & to be told time & time again that I’d better shut up or I’ll be kicked out really gets my blood boiling. Where else can we meet with our fellow citizens & discuss the topics of the day like the nut-job in El Paso a few weeks back who killed over 20 Hispanics because he believed this was what Trump was telling us we should do.

 

We’re supposed to just sit silent & not discuss or debate such heinous crimes against humanity? And I’ve noticed that this social taboo against speaking about politics in bars is hypocritical in that you can talk about the local politics in your town i.e. the city not fixing potholes, a new local tax, etc. but dare to bring up the serious, national issues like El Paso & the bartenders who often just barely graduated high school, swoop on you like they’re the guardians at the gate.

 

Yet every once in a while, I’ve been in a tavern where the bartender was more enlightened & several of us customers got into a lively discussion/debate about national & international issues and I saw the light come on in peoples’ eyes. And afterwards, I’ve had people come up to me & thank me with comments like; “Wow! That was the best conversation I’ve had in ten years!” I believe people are hungry for real conversation/debate because we have been slowly getting dumbed-down with asinine television programming & advertisements for our entire lives.

 

Unlike our infamous “leader,” I’m not bragging & claiming that those energizing conversations happened because I’m so brilliant. No, I merely played the role of moderator & would add interesting points or questions here & there and encourage those who were mostly just listening, to join in with their perspective. And yes, I realize that I can’t expect every conversation in a bar to be as stimulating as those rare ones that I have experienced but to command us to be silent is closer to living in a totalitarian state like Russia or China & I thought we were supposed to be better than that?

 

Furthermore, I don’t buy the standard excuse for why we’re not allowed to speak about politics in bars; “People get too upset & start fights.” Why not just cut-off or 86 those who become belligerent just as you would for any one of hundreds of other reasons people become aggressive in bars? I have had guys come really close to trying to physically intimidate me & have realized that I was arguing with a brick wall so I’d say, let’s just agree to disagree, and I’d either change the subject or if they were still trying to intimidate me, I’d get up and move or simply leave the bar.

 

Perhaps we’ve also lost our sense of outrage at the erosion of our freedoms & rights due to the fact that most of us work for private corporations which are de facto “private tyrannies?” This concept never even occurred to me until I learned about it from my intellectual hero, Noam Chomsky. Here’s a quote from Noam that should give every true patriot cause for serious concern;

 

January 21, 2010 will go down as a dark day in the history of American democracy, and its decline. The editors of the New York Times did not exaggerate when they wrote that the Supreme Court decision that day “strikes at the heart of democracy” by having “paved the way for corporations to use their vast treasuries to overwhelm elections and intimidate elected officials into doing their bidding” — more explicitly, for permitting corporate managers to do so, since current laws permit them to spend shareholder money without consent.

https://chomsky.info/20100124/

 

To conclude my remarks on the subject of our rights being severely curtailed, I want to unequivocally state that no, I’m not a grand conspiracy theorist & I detest Alex Jones, who Trump loves to cite in his fear & hate rallies. But, it is a fact that the Patriot Act which was rammed through Congress two months after 9/11 & didn’t even give Congress time to read it, in effect, shredded our Bill of Rights.

 

Moreover, 9/11 was just the sort of event that Dick Cheney & the others who formed the right-wing, think tank P.N.A.C. (Project for the New American Century) established in 1997, had been looking for so they could initiate their War on Terror campaign which would guarantee that the billions & trillions of dollars being siphoned off from the U.S. Treasury would continue ad infinitum. Yes, this was the perfect justification for the theft & waste by the military-industrial complex that President Eisenhower warned us about because it is the gift that never stops giving i.e. terrorism will never stop especially because the more we bomb other nations & kill innocent civilians, the more terrorists we keep on creating.Sorry but I’m going to disillusion you Sunshine Patriots yet again, here are the facts about America’s so-called desire to bring peace, freedom, & democracy to the world—a list of our wars or police actions since the founding of the United States (read it if you dare i.e. if the facts don’t scare you as they do with Trump followers & many “Christian” evangelicals; https://www.globalresearch.ca/america-has-been-at-war-93-of-the-time-222-out-of-239-years-since-1776/55659 )

 

And once again, No, this isn’t a grand conspiracy because quite frankly, they’re not that clever. It boils down to the fact that all these players i.e. the government, “Defense” contractors, the 1%, etc. are unified in one thing, their greed.

 

Some of you may still not care that the NSA is illegally spying on every American citizen & is storing all our data, “content” and metadata, in their new, storage center in Utah. And as Snowden showed us, this metadata provided to the government by Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, etc. can be used against us whenever the government may wish to do so. Our metadata is a record of our location, the sites we log on to, the duration of our phone calls, our e-mail exchanges, etc. etc. etc. and if we should ever be a target of our government, it’d be very easy for them to fabricate a crime we supposedly committed by simply linking our metadata & concocting a fictitious narrative about us. Perhaps you think this is very unlikely? How many times have we heard of people framed by the police and/or the district attorney simply because they wanted to look good in the public’s eye for having solved a crime.

 

As for you who still don’t give a shit about your privacy, consider these possible scenarios the NSA could record about your behavior:

 

  • Cheating on your wife or husband
  • A homosexual experience
  • You masturbating
  • Making love to your spouse
  • Shitting your pants
  • A sexual disease you contracted
  • A diagnosis of cancer
  • Fights with your kids or your spouse
  • Getting fired
  • Losing your home
  • Being obese
  • Being homeless
  • Your kids’ private lives
  • Your spouse naked
  • Porn you watch
  • Paying a hooker for sex
  • Funerals you attend
  • Your breaking down emotionally
  • Your spouse telling you they want a divorce
  • Your dying in the hospital
  • Being drunk & starting a fight and seriously hurting someone
  • You drunk driving
  • Whipping your child
  • Beating your wife
  • Threatening someone
  • Cheating on your taxes
  • Having sex with someone you’re embarrassed to have been with
  • Your daughter’s period
  • Your home burning down
  • Stealing something
  • Cheating on a test

 

Naturally, this list could go on & on and you could come up with your own list of things you’d rather not be known or common knowledge. So, tell me again that you have nothing to hide & you don’t mind the fact that the NSA has invaded every nook & cranny of our daily lives & is recording it.

 

“Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

― Benjamin Franklin

 

 

Addendum

 

 

I almost forgot one of the key points on this subject, as Edward Snowden mentioned in the excellent film; “Citizen Four,” it’s all about “Control.” I believe he was being very cautious because he didn’t want to be dismissed as yet another “conspiracy nut,” and that’s why he only touched on the “control” issue so briefly. Moreover, in a nutshell, this connects with what Chomsky titled one of his books; “Keeping the Rabble in Line.”

 

Principle 8- Keep the Rabble in Line

Elites’ concentrated efforts against democratizing tendencies, as Chomsky has noted several times, are nothing new along the course of American history. One of the most successful counterforces to these efforts has been organized labor, because “they provide a barrier that defends workers’ rights, but also popular rights generally” (107). Naturally, the business class extended their offensive to dismantle organized labor, one of their strongest opponents to what Chomsky calls “corporate tyranny” (107). Until the New Deal, the labor movement was relatively stagnant. Franklin Delano Roosevelt asked union leaders to use the voice of the masses to effectively force the administration into labor reform initiatives. He argued that his hands were tied politically until the “popular pressure [was] sufficient” enough to overrule disagreements about New Deal policies among society’s elites (109). According to Chomsky, leaders of.

http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-requiem-for-the-american-dream/chapanal008.html#gsc.tab=

And as a parting gift for you true seekers of knowledge & understanding;

 

 

 

 

 

How We Could Reduce the level of Ignorance in America

 

 

A good starting place would be for us to frog-march Trump, the Commander & Chief Dunce, out of the White House in an orange jump-suit to match his tan & in handcuffs right into Pelican Bay & throw away the key.

the poster boy for “willful ignorance”

 

I know, wishful thinking but hey, we don’t have much else to live on nowadays given the insatiable greed of the 1% & their lackeys in both political parties. Here are a few suggestions that came to me & in no particular order but bear in mind that the best & most important place to start is in your own home & your own life because we sure as Hell can’t rely on the putrid politicians sucking on the teats of the corporate cockroaches who make up the 1%.

 

I have spent my life seriously pursuing knowledge & by extension, wisdom & truth. I was a teacher in various guises from serving as a tutor to being a teacher. I have collected a personal library of approximately 10,000 books & have made copious notes in several hundred of my books. I have spent approximately 50,000 hours conservatively over the past 40 years reading, writing, watching documentaries, listening to radio programs, etc. about politics. And I have written probably 300 essays or better, some 20 to 30 pages. I also have two major writing projects or works in progress, one that is non-fiction is over 2,000 pages & the fiction project which is a combination of fantasy, autobiography, & politics is over 2,400 pages at present. This doesn’t mean that I believe that I’m a world authority but it does mean that I’ve done my homework & am light-years ahead of our liar in chief, the moron sitting behind the empty desk in the oval office.

how the rich buy “respectability”

 

  • Prosecute Betsy DeVos for the fraud of pretending to be human & educated
  • Eliminate all standardized testing
  • Stop the use of Scantron tests (multiple choice & true/false questions)
  • Instead of stopping the teaching of reading in the fourth grade, keep teaching every student how to read until they are able to read at their grade level (exceptions of course for those who are truly intellectually-challenged like Trump)</li>
  • All people should have books (mentally stimulating books) in their homes, especially those with young children
  • Reading on a regular basis sends a powerful message to your kids that reading is a worthwhile activity because it shows not just tells them that it’s good for them to do
  • Read to your kids in bed for as long as they’ll allow you to without complaining that they’ve outgrown the practice
  • Have students start writing stories, book reports, poems, essays, etc. as soon as possible in their public education or private education
  • If the educational bureaucracy won’t get off teachers’ backs, assign a personal secretary for every teacher whose job is to take care of the bullshit paperwork
  • Outlaw the stealing of public education funding & giving it to charter schools
  • Charter schools reflect the power of the “Christian” evangelicals or fundamentalists over spine-less politicians</li>
  • Our founding fathers insisted on the separation of Church & State precisely because they feared what is happening now, Charter schools’agenda of turning our nation into a delusional nation where rational thought is dismissed—Trump’s “alternative facts”
  • Take 5% of the annual waste, fraud, & abuse in the Pentagon’s budget & give it to public education
  • Pay teachers on a scale comparable to high tech professionals
  • Enforce the FCC’s original mandate to provide the public with high-quality educational & cultural programming & expand it to three hours of prime-time every day of the week & make all the networks, including the cable networks, pay 20 % of their net profits to our public education system
  • Limit all class sizes to 20 students as the absolute maximum allowable under law</li>
  • Start teaching critical & analytical thinking skills to students as soon as they are developmentally able to comprehend them
  • Every American citizen as well as resident, can attend any university they want to absolutely free (from their local community college to Harvard University)
  • Expand the study of the humanities as well as the arts from kindergarten to university & bestow national recognition on their study with awards, honors, etc.
  • Call out every politician who knowingly lies on national television with unbiased great scholars who publicly humiliate them
  • Promote & establish community learning centers in every community where residents can get academic help, and can enjoy lively discussions/debates on any subject/topic of their choice with academic referees to moderate & guide the discussions
  • Call out advertisers who purposely dumb us down with their insulting advertisements & publicly ridicule them
  • Create/build high-quality public libraries in every community no matter how poor; house them in beautifully designed architectural works of art with all the latest technology, top-notch librarians, & collections worthy of the Library of Congress
  • Give Writers & Educators & Artists from every form of art, the national attention, recognition, & respect as we do of our Sports stars</li>
  • Subsidize students from poor circumstances in a way that isn’t personally embarrassing to the students
  • Take away the tax-free status of churches & make them pay a substantial tax to their local, public schools
  • Outlaw all on-line “universities” unless they can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that their graduates have clearly benefitted greatly from their studies
  • Build, maintain, & ensure the future of a public education system that is the envy of the world in terms of its physical structures, the quality of instruction, & a sincere love for each and every student
  • Start teaching students about informal fallacies of logic as soon as they are able to comprehend them so they hopefully won’t be as easily duped as so many of their parents are by Trump, the Great Deceiver!
  • Develop programs to expand students’ attention spans so they can pursue self-education whether in or out of formal school settings</li>

 

Utopian? Yeah, I expect such reactions but I have always been a sort of Don Quixote chasing after windmills & I remember those immortal words of Martin Luther King; “I have a Dream!” Without our dreams to push us forward, what’s the point of our lives? To simply be able to put on our tombstones; They paid their bills & kept a clean house? It’s the dreamers who have always inspired us & who have led us to times when we weren’t just the peasants for the lords like Little Lord Fauntleroy Trump to spit on.

 

Addendum: I originally was going to end this essay here but as I was editing this, I thought; I have to share with you the man the New York Times once said was “arguably the most important intellectual alive,’ Noam Chomsky.

America’s Zombie Cult

 

 

 

First and foremost, I can relate to Trump’s followers’ anger & frustration at our establishment because I have been battling the establishment ever since I went AWOL from the U.S. Army back in 1972. And for a young man of 19 years, that was one of the scariest periods of my life.

The darkest days of my life until I lost my wife

 

As I matured, I began to see what a pack of lies my generation had been told. I saw how our public education system was built on a mountain of lies & false promises. And as I worked at one Mickey Mouse job after another, I began to realize that this was perhaps one of the cruelest myths of all. Hard work & dedication to your job rarely paid off. No, it was usually those who were related to the owner of the company or those who were the biggest brown-nosers who “succeeded.”

A real patriot, Ron Kovic, who spoke the truth after realizing the lie of Vietnam war.

 

In brief, if you had integrity & couldn’t bring yourself to suck-up to the bosses, you were usually marginalized or gotten rid of. I busted my ass pursuing higher education for 14 years. I rode a bicycle five miles to a community college, four nights a week after working an eight-hour day in a golf club factory for a couple of semesters at one point. I studied business administration, oceanography, & liberal arts and often dropped-out half way or even three-quarters of the way through a semester because I was bored & not inspired by what I was learning.

 

I pursued my dreams of adventure & hitchhiked up & down the West Coast dozens of times, across America, & around Europe several times often on a one-way ticket with a couple hundred bucks in my pocket.

 

I had been raised mostly by a single parent, my mom. She often worked two or three jobs at a time to feed us & keep a roof over our heads. I basically raised my brother & sisters & fought everyone’s battles. I got 40 cents a day for lunch when I was in high school. And I held down two paper routes to earn my spending money & pumped gas as a senior in high school.

 

I stood up against some of my mom’s boyfriends who were cruel to us or raised a hand to my mom. I clearly didn’t have a happy childhood but through it all, I kept my dreams alive & read like a person possessed.

 

And after my experience in the army, I thank God that I trusted my gut instinct & didn’t let them send me to Vietnam. I wasn’t politically aware but I had seen enough of the army’s lies to know that they couldn’t be trusted. I got out of the army with an undesirable discharge & began to read a lot of books on history, philosophy, & politics due largely to some very smart people I’d met on my travels. And slowly the veil of ignorance was removed & I began to connect the dots.

I read this book 30 years ago & it’s truly scary how ignorant we are as a nation

 

This is the major difference between me & Trump’s cult of zombies. They, often through no fault of their own, haven’t read the great authors like Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, or Michael Parenti & because of this, they haven’t developed their critical/analytical thinking skills and are much more susceptible to the propaganda & bullshit of people like Trump.

 

And this is not only sad but dangerous because Trump’s followers are so easily aroused to anger & hatred because he is a master at manipulating their emotions to direct their anger at fellow victims rather than our true enemy i.e. the 1% who are the masters of the political establishment.

isn’t it interesting how the “Christian” agenda & the corporate cockroach agenda go hand-in-glove?

 

I call these “masters,” the corporate cockroaches because they hide in the dark & they have succeeded fantastically over the past 40 years or better in blaming the government for their dirty deeds. And no, I’m not saying that the politicians are innocent. Not by a longshot but if we are to survive this onslaught, we must focus our energies on the corporate sector.

smile & laugh because they are too, all the way to the bank as they steal your pension, your home, etc.

 

I must say that it really baffles me how the poor, the struggling working class can actually believe an established habitual liar who claims to be a self-made billionaire, is their champion. Trump failed at nearly every business venture he got into but daddy kept bailing him out & gave him hundreds of millions of dollars & a million dollars annually so he could never fail totally. And he has a long track record of screwing contractors & employees out of the money he owes them. This is your hero?

this is why Trump hates the Times more than any other newspaper

 

Daddy Trump made his fortune by being a slum-lord & discriminating against Black American citizens. And this is the key to Trump’s success in becoming our president, he played the race card brilliantly in his own, evil way.

 

Nothing takes peoples’ minds off their troubles easier & better than by focusing their anger on scapegoats. This is standard operating procedure for all demagogues, dictators, fascists, & authoritarians. And Trump clearly loves dictators i.e. Putin, Duterte, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, etc. Moreover, Trump fancies himself an authoritarian because he’s always gotten his way as a spoiled-child whom daddy always bankrolled & protected from the law with a platoon of lawyers. And Donny got to play the part of a successful billionaire on television—which was almost entirely a work of fiction. Check it out for yourself by seeing what the producers of The Apprentice have revealed.

Do you actually need testimonies as to Trump’s colossal ignorance on just about everything? Open your eyes!

 

And speaking of revealing, here are my revelations for those of you who give a fuck about who Trump really is behind all those Hollywood staged rallies. Moreover, I can back my shit up unlike Trump who just makes outrageous claims daily but can never back them up with facts. Why do you think he threatened every school he ever attended with lawsuits if they dared to release his grades? This mental & moral midget hides behind his wall of lies always protected by lawyers & publicists or P.R. people like Kellyanne Conway with her “alternate facts.”

would your teachers in public school accept these “arguments” for your laziness & stupidity???

 

Facebook and the other “social media platforms” like Twitter & our ‘Smart phones,” are reducing us to our basest, reptilian minds & we simply react on a flight or fight level.

 

The more successful these platforms are at pushing peoples’ emotional buttons like fear & hate, the more addicted people become to these platforms. Hence, the more time they spend on Facebook, Twitter, etc., the wealthier the owners like Zuckerberg become from the advertising revenues they collect. And what’s really spooky is the fact that over 50% of Americans get their news from Facebook. By-the-way, Zuckerberg refuses to accept responsibility for the truthfulness of the political ads on Facebook & Breitbart—the Neo-Nazi & White Nationalist epicenter—is the largest political advertising customer on Facebook. And Breitbart via its former editor, Steve Bannon, hired Cambridge Analytica which bought the personal data of over 80,000 Facebook users & by extension got all their friends as well, and this is how they targeted the Facebook users they knew would be receptive to the fake news stories about Hillary & put Trump in the White House.

The beginning of wisdom is knowing that you don’t know. (Socrates)

 

Can you understand now how perversely hypocritical it is every time Trump lashes out at “fake news” when he has benefitted more than anyone else from fake news? Let alone the fact that he received at least 23 times the media coverage running up to the election than Bernie Sanders by the “mainstream media.”

 

Continuing, so like the movies that most of us who weren’t born with the silver spoon in our mouths like Donnie was watch, they’re becoming ever more violent, bloody, gory, etc. in a constant effort by Hollywood to outdo itself in a deescalating road to the darkest pits of Hell even more horrifying than anything Dante could imagine.

I’m not a religious person but if I were, this is the anti-Christ i.e. no compassion whatsoever

 

Call me a sissy, I don’t give a shit. But I could only stomach about ten minutes of one episode of The Walking Dead series, once. It was nauseating in its gory & gruesome details of hacking a zombie to death. I thought, this is definitely not my idea of entertainment. So, you can imagine my sad surprise at the popularity of this series.

 

Another factor in how we have come to this sad state of affairs is the fact that our attention spans are growing ever shorter. Yep! The average American’s attention span has now shrunk to less than that of a goldfish. I shit you not. Does this not embarrass you? And again, we can thank Hollywood to a large extent for this tragic phenomenon.

 

Our brains have been conditioned to needing ever faster visual stimulation & an escalating volume of images mostly action or emotionally themed. We are like rats in a maze, hamsters in a cage.

 

Need more convincing? Scan your T.V. guide & look at the most popular movies of the last several years. T.V. shows & movies about vampires & zombies are amongst the most popular. Movies about the dystopian future and the coming apocalypse are amongst the biggest blockbusters along with superhero movies. Our psyches need to believe some superhero like a Donald Trump are going to rescue us from the dreaded liberals & democrats who have destroyed our once idyllic America (Make America Great Again) & ignore the fact that there never was a time when America was great for everyone.

 

Furthermore, consider what passes for news nowadays. The “mainstream” media (corporate owned) & cable news has indeed become infotainment. News reporters & pundits have become interchangeable & pass back & forth through the revolving door that has blurred fact & fiction.

the journalist who dared to take on the witch-hunter McCarthy who terrified Hollywood & the national media

 

Journalists in Edward R. Murrow’s day were supposed to be objective reporters of the facts. Of course, Murrow’s personal opinion pieces were hugely popular but they were clearly identified as editorials & in the main, the news divisions were objective & factual. Today they have abandoned almost entirely this journalistic ethic. And for the record, I was shocked & saddened from nearly the beginning of FOX “News’” introduction to our airwaves. FOX is clearly the closest thing to Russia’s Pravda that we’ve ever known. (look it up if you can spare the time)

McCarthy & Roy Cohn, Trump’s mentor i.e. Distract, Deceive, Deny & above all else, keep your name in the public’s mind whether positive or negative

 

We now have a president who relies on The National Enquirer to protect him from some of his most damning actions & words. A president who openly believes in & promotes conspiracy theories from his buddy, Alex Jones who called the Sandy Hook massacre of over 20 elementary school students a grand hoax. A president who refuses to read his daily briefings & can barely form a coherent sentence and that’s becoming ever rarer.

 

In short, we’re drowning in a sea of crap. It’s all junk food for the senses with very little to absolutely nothing in the way of nutritional value for our minds or our souls. And this is why it’s far easier for us to remember the books we’ve read. Books require your mind to engage on a deep level i.e. remembering the plot, the characters, your thoughts as you ponder the actions & words of the characters, etc. But when we watch television or movies, our minds are passive & are just receiving the images & emotions and very little if any reflection takes place. This is why we, myself included, so often forget the movies we’ve watched. I’ll sometimes be halfway through a movie before I realize that I had seen it before. Movies & T.V. are like candy & taste good until they’re over but then we’re still hungry for something nutritional or substantial. This unhealthy diet of action & violence is a drug and most of us are addicted to it, especially those who fell for Trump’s snake-oil medicine show. And this addiction may very well spell the end of American democracy?

 

You see, my imaginary reader, the United States is one of the most violent societies on Earth, if not “the” most violent. And yeah, I know this is going to piss some of you off because we’ve all been indoctrinated from childhood on that America is the champion of the world. The protector & promoter of freedom & democracy. I obviously can’t distill down for you what it’s taken me over 30 years of research to learn about our ignoble past & present. And if you’re not willing to even entertain the possibility that this might be the truth, why should I waste my time & energy trying to reach you?

This is a key reason why Trump appeals to those who don’t or can’t read & those who prefer to remain ignorant. Trump again is like that candy that tastes so good for a minute but as soon as it’s  gone, you need another fix. Another fix of fiction, hatred, & blaming a convenient scapegoat who Trump is an expert on. You can’t help but remember Trump’s myriad areas of expertise because he graciously & generously reminds of them every time he opens his foul mouth.

 

To return to reality and no, not Kellyanne Conway’s “alternate reality/facts,” America is now the most feared nation on Earth—and yeah, I know earth is not supposed to be capitalized but I feel it should be because we are a planet— even more feared than terrorists.

Why, you may ask? Because of our actions like Obama’s illegal & immoral Drone warfare program and his weekly meetings in which they chose the target of the day. Yep, they were judge, jury, & executioner and even killed a couple of Americans they suspected of terrorist activity but couldn’t be bothered to taking them to trial.

 

We are feared because our C.I.A. and several of our other intelligence agencies have been overthrowing other nations’ democratically elected leaders for decades. It’s so absurd for us to get so self-righteous about the supposed Russian interference in our 2016 presidential election by hacking our system when we have assassinated world leaders who we felt threatened “our” corporate interests. And no, this doesn’t mean that I accept Trump’s conspiracy theory of the “Deep State,” and its secret mission to overthrow him.

And this is just one example amongst dozens & dozens of others.

 

Though there might be a small element of truth to the idea that our intelligence agencies would love to see Trump gone because of the very real threat that he poses to our government, I’m not going to get sidetracked by that grand conspiracy because that is just what the zombie puppet masters like Steve Bannon want us to do so we won’t notice the very real threats & destruction that Trump is getting away with.  Trump is to my mind, a clear & present danger to all of America and to the world by extension.

 

We have over 900 military bases around the globe & who knows how many secret bases where we’ve tortured or farmed-out torture to willing accomplices, those we’ve extraordinarily rendered i.e. kidnapped. I believe Russia has about nine or eleven bases and they’re on Russia’s borders? And no, in no way am I a defender of Putin, that’s your zombie leader Trump’s hero. Putin is a bloody dictator plain & simple and it strikes me as absolutely mind-boggling that the pundits warn us that if the democratic presidential contenders are labeled as being Socialist, the democratic party will once again lose & Trump may very well get another term.

 

The G.O.P. has waged a steady propaganda campaign ever since F.D.R. passed the New Deal. And they’ve been extremely successful in painting any programs or politicians who defend the rights of workers or the public are socialists or worse yet, communists. And here we have a president who openly & consistently defends the dictator of Russia but hey,  don’t let the democrats dare defend or call for socialist things like universal health care, free university, etc because that is the road to communism. Remember, that trivial thing called the Cold War & our arch enemies, Russia & China who are now Trump’s pen pals? . This is truly Alice in Wonderland. Why won’t the democratic party stand up on its hind legs and call out the contradictions & hypocrisy of this bullshit propaganda?

 

That was a rhetorical question because I know why they won’t. It’s because they are part of the same corrupt & rotten to the core system that infects our establishment i.e. everything is for the 1%.

 

Again, we have been so brainwashed over the decades as to the imperative need for a powerful military that no one dares—well almost no one, Bernie & Elizabeth speak to it to some extent—to challenge the bedrock premise of our entire military/industrial/congressional complex i.e. the barbarians are at the gates & we must be ever vigilant (was “the commies are coming” now, it’s “the terrorists are coming.”)

As a result of this relentless propaganda campaign that has existed all my life & I’m now 67 years old, we supposedly never have enough money to pay for a quality public education system, universal health care, and all those other unnecessary programs that only benefit the poor, the working class, & the middle class. Nope! We need more of those $900 hammers & billion-dollar weapons systems that don’t even work and some of which the Pentagon doesn’t even want.

 

And what has your champion, Trump done for you? Nothing, that’s what. He spews out lies nonstop because he knows that you won’t check out the facts & that you blindly believe every lie he tells you because you’re his zombie cult, unthinking & unfeeling unless he winds you up with his Hitler-like rallies.

 

In conclusion, if the 1% were to stop feeding us their propaganda of fear & hate which keeps us divided against one another, we might unite & take back our country. Of course, this would hurt them where it matters most i.e. in their financial portfolios.

 

None of this is new in world history, the elite from every nation throughout history have used the time-tested & reliable tactic of Divide & Conquer. Yep! Keep us blaming one another for what they’re doing to us all and the rich can & do get away with murder again & again. And we die in the gutters homeless, alone, & humiliated, blamed for not having made good choices in our lives.

 

Meanwhile, to some extent their propaganda has become a self-fulfilling prophecy because our never-ending wars in which we rape, pillage, & plunder the rest of the world keeps the hatred of America alive in the hearts of terrorists & helps recruits new terrorists. This is why 9/11 was a godsend to the powers that be, they now had the pretext for their hidden agenda of becoming masters of the universe.

 

Whenever you hear them use the phrase; “It’s a matter of National Security,” hold on to your wallet because that’s code for bend over suckers, we’re taking more of your hard-earned money & tough shit if you don’t like it.

 

Trump is little more than a circus ring-leader not unlike in the days of the mighty Roman Empire where they threw Christians to the lions for public spectacle to keep the Roman citizens distracted from the corrupt practices of their Senate,  who were the obscenely wealthy like Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan.

A very dangerous clown who definitely shouldn’t be taken lightly!

 

My guess is that a large portion of those who defend Trump no matter how vile his words or actions, are, are probably huge fans of The Walking Dead but while they are vicariously getting a thrill out of watching the zombies being butchered, they don’t realize that they are the zombies in real-life who are being slaughtered by the Trumps of this world!

P.S. By-the-way, Trump hasn’t honored a single one of his campaign promises but his tax break did give this gift to his crime-partners;

Trump’s Tax Cuts Are the Biggest Wealth Grab in Modern History  https://fortune.com/2017/11/03/trump-gop-tax-plan-cuts-2017/

P.T. Barnum said, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” and boy was he right

How’s that for “draining the swamp?” (Hint; Reagan’s tired old lie is still alive & well i.e. his trickle-down theory that by giving the rich tax breaks, they’ll hire more workers & give their workers raises, etc. In reality, they piss on us & tell us it’s raining golden benefits on us. But hey, wait a minute, doesn’t Trump like golden showers from Russian hookers???

Addendum

I almost forgot. I sent Noam Chomsky—many consider him the most important intellectual alive—an e-mail a few days ago (October 23, 2019) about my belief that Facebook is mainly responsible for the election of Trump. Noam replied; “It’s a plague.”

 

 

Facebook’s Friendly Fascism

 

 

“When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.”  —Sinclair Lewis

Did you say wrapped in a flag or humping a flag?

 

“Fascism is when corporations take over the government.” —Bill Maher

Pat Robertson, the good “Christian” worth $100 million-crooks of a feather hang together

 

 

 

 

Because of American’s aversion to history and as a result, our general ignorance of history, I’m going to start by giving you a brief history of American business’ fondness for fascism. Note; Pence carries the Cross for Trump & that’s all they had to do to win-over the “Christian” evangelicals’ vote.

 

“Mussolini’s regime received particularly warm praise from America’s business leaders. In his 1972 work, Prof. Diggins writes (pp. 146-47): “With few exceptions, the dominant voices of business responded to Fascism with a hearty enthusiasm. Favorable editorials, could be read in publications such as Barron’s, Journal of Commerce and Commercial Bulletin, Commerce and Finance, Nation’s Business (the official organ of the US Chamber of Commerce), and the reputable Wall Street Journal. Aside from the press, the list of outspoken business admirers reads like a Wall Street ‘Who’s Who’.”

http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v15/v15n3p6_weber.html

 

 

Moreover, here is just a partial list of American corporations who not only did business in Nazi Germany but actually had the gall to sue our own government for damages done to their factories in Germany during the war & won reparations. Yeah! I shit you not:

 

  • Coca-Cola
  • Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
  • Chase Manhattan Bank
  • Dow Chemical
  • Brown Brothers Harriman (Bush family)
  • Woolworth (Woolworth’s 5 & 10 cent stores)
  • Alcoa Aluminum
  • Ford Motor Company
  • General Motors
  • B.M. (International Business Machines)

 

https://www.toptenz.net/top-10-american-companies-that-aided-the-nazis.php

 

And lastly but certainly not least, here’s a bit of history for you that really shocked me when I first learned of it:

 

The Business Plot was an alleged political conspiracy in 1933 in the United States. Retired Marine Corps Major General Smedley Butlerclaimed that wealthy businessmen were plotting to create a fascist veterans’ organization with Butler as its leader and use it in a coup d’état to overthrow President Franklin D. Roosevelt. In 1934, Butler testified before the United States House of Representatives Special Committee on Un-American Activities (the “McCormackDickstein Committee”) on these claims.[1] No one was prosecuted.

 

This is from a Wikipedia entry & yeah, I know, you might choose to lump me in with the likes of Alex Jones—whom I detest & know to be a fear and hate monger like his buddy Trump—but it’s common knowledge that Congress is & has been bought & paid for by Corporate America so is it any wonder that they’d brush this attempted coup under the rug? (Note Trump’s fondness for conspiracy theories except when they’re ones he’s involved in)

And no, this isn’t peculiar to only America but as the most powerful nation on Earth, we bear the majority of the responsibility for corporate corruption around the globe & it is my duty as an American citizen to hold my government accountable first & foremost before I criticize other nations.

 

Guess whose name came up again in this “alleged” plot? Yep! Prescott Bush, the senator & the father of George H.W. Bush. (the Business Plot to overthrow F.D.R., not the Red Car conspiracy) Here’s one last tidbit for you:

 

“He mentioned that the Remington arms manufacturers would supply the army, thanks to a working relationship with the DuPonts. “We need a Fascist government in this country,” he told the reporter, “to save the nation from the communists who want to tear it down and wreck all that we have built in America. The only men who have the patriotism to do it are the soldiers and Smedley Butler is the ideal leader. He could organize a million men overnight.”

 

https://timeline.com/business-plot-overthrow-fdr-9a59a012c32a

 

I took the time to provide you with this lengthy warm-up to my essay so as to show you that the only loyalty that many, if not most of “our” largest corporations have is to the almighty dollar. They have & they continue to betray us day in, day out i.e. NAFTA.(remember it was Clinton who signed NAFTA into law) Trump is nothing more than a circus clown whose job is to distract us while the corporate cockroaches rob us. Reagan did pretty much the same thing but he clearly wasn’t anywhere as crude & vulgar as Trump.

Stephen King should make a horror movie of this guy

 

Trump’s “win” showed the world how truly stupid we are because only in America, could such a colossal moron be elected president. And my life’s mission is to chip away at our ignorance so in that vein, here we go.

 

This essay is basically my attempt to connect the dots of the fantastic documentary just released on Netflix; “The Great Hack.” I’ll try to use quotation marks consistently but if I forget from time to time, I don’t mean to plagiarize it’s merely an oversight on my part?

In brief, this film exposes how the British firm, Cambridge Analytica, bought Facebook user’s personal data to target people they knew were susceptible to fake news & propaganda ads so they’d vote for Trump.

 

Mussolini, Italy’s fascist dictator who inspired Hitler, said that fascism should more rightly be called Corporatism because it’s a marriage of the state & corporations. Zuckerberg has proven that he’s a fascist because he sold our data to any company that’d pay for it & he willingly provides our data to the government. And as a result of Zuckerberg’s greed, we have a president who is clearly only out to make as much money for himself & his family and doesn’t give a shit about us as citizens, about the environment, or anything else except what feeds his ego.

Thanks buddy!

 

Returning to the film, Brittany Kaiser is a central figure in this nightmare become reality. She was “a key employee at Cambridge Analytica but before that, she worked for the Obama campaign then the Trump campaign.”

 

The narrator of the film points out that “our behavior is being accurately predicted” (via all our personal data that we freely provide to Facebook). Enter David Carroll, associate professor at Parsons School of Design. He basically got the ball rolling for this film by suing in a British court, Cambridge Analytica to get his personal data back. He informs us that they (Cambridge Analytica) are “creating specific ads for us as individuals, through the data we have supplied on Facebook & other social media platforms.”

 

“It (Facebook) began as a dream where we could all become connected via the Internet. It became our matchmaker, personal entertainer, guardian of our memories, even our therapist, but these data trails of ourselves are being mined into a trillion dollar a year business.”

 

Yeah, “we are now the commodity.” And I assert that we are no longer the consumer except in a perverse way we are because we’re consuming ourselves, a sort of cannibalism, & we are being served up to the fascists who rule the world. Moreover, it’s our “content” i.e. our stories, pictures, etc., that is the product being sold—we lose our intellectual property rights as soon as we post something on Facebook.

 

“We were so in love with all those ‘free’ gifts (on Facebook) that no one bothered to read the terms & conditions.” I am reminded of the old adage, Beware of Greeks bearing gifts. “All our interactions, credit card swipes, web searches, locations, ‘Likes,’ etc. are being collected in ‘real time,’ and are attached to our Identity.”

 

Perhaps you think this is an exaggeration? If so, then why did they build a data storage center in Bluffdale, Utah supposedly for the NSA & our “Intelligence Community” which covers over a million square feet & collects data on the order of “exabytes” or larger?

Home sweet home for every American’s data. Thanks Big Brother!

 

The exabyte is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information. In the International System of Units (SI), the prefix exa indicates multiplication by the sixth power of 1000 (1018). Therefore, one exabyte is one quintillion bytes (short scale). The unit symbol for the exabyte is EB.

 

You’re probably in the dark like me when it comes to having the foggiest idea of how big a quintillion is, so here’s an example;

 

The entire Earth contains about 326 quintillion gallons of water.

 

We’re supposed to believe “our” government when they tell us that all this data they’re collecting is for our national security. Yeah, right! Just how many times & in how many ways do they have to screw you before you wake-up and smell the coffee? That brave soul & true patriot, Edward Snowden, gave up his freedom, his ability to ever see his home country again to spend the rest of his life in exile with the ever-present possibility of being imprisoned & tortured by our “Intelligence community,” to reveal the truth about what the NSA, CIA, FBI, etc. are really doing with all our data. And he only mentioned it briefly in the stupendous documentary by Laura Poitras; “Citizen Four.” In a word, Snowden said it’s about “Control.”

Let that word roll around in your mind for a few minutes. Facebook & most of the other “social media platforms,” our Intelligence agencies, & the corporate cockroaches all have one thing in common i.e. their desire to control not only our buying habits but our obedience to the political elite, whoever they may be at any given point in time.

 

And no, this isn’t the latest science fiction movie blockbuster, this is the cold, hard reality that is enveloping us like a menacing fog. Okay, now that I’ve probably depressed you considerably, let’s return to the documentary; “The Great Hack.” But first let me remind those of you who are old enough to remember, COINTELPRO, to bear that in mind while we reflect on the NSA’s abilities today & Facebook’s reach (two billion users). Still feel free here in the land of democracy?

The narrator goes on to inform us that our data willingly sold by Facebook to any buyer, “gives them direct access to our emotional pulse” as well. I immediately thought of our “Hearts and Minds” strategy employed by our “military intelligence” during the Vietnam debacle. Yep! Win the people’s whose country you’re invading, gratitude & cooperation by “Pacifying” them i.e. burning their villages down & imprisoning them in concentration camps.

 

Need I remind you of how well that strategy worked out in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, etc.? Gee! I sure do regret not being a “good soldier” & participating in the humanitarian agenda in Vietnam. (this is sarcasm for those of you who may not catch on?)

 

Analogously, I view corporate America’s & the “Intelligence community’s” agenda for winning our hearts & minds is also doomed to fail because of its inherent evil.

 

The narrator continues; “Armed with this (emotional) knowledge of us, they (social media platforms) compete for our attention feeding us a steady stream of “Content” built for & seen by only me.” In other words, their algorithms are so finely-tuned that we don’t even realize that we’re being manipulated i.e. we feel that we are not alone in thinking/feeling the way we do & have magically stumbled upon like-minded individuals because just about every post that comes through our Facebook feed, confirms what I know & believe.

 

“And this is true for each and every one of us i.e. what we like, what we feel, what gets our attention, what our boundaries are, & what it takes to cross our boundaries.” Speaking of feelings, here’s an insider who revealed what your “Smart phone,” is doing to you;

Does this not horrify you? At least in the horror sci-fi genre of movies we watch, we can take comfort in knowing that these are merely Hollywood techniques meant to give us a thrill by scaring us. And perhaps naturally, we’re unwilling or unable to face the ugly reality of what is creeping up on us?

 

Speaking of nightmares, Trump is every sentient being’s living image of the worst of humanity, I believe? It’s truly unfathomable that a more despicable person could occupy the oval office? And as the narrator points out, “We saw the fallout of our filtered reality in the 2016 election. The real world became a deeply divided refuge site.”

 

Giving proof, in my opinion, that the introduction of “reality T.V.,” is partially responsible for our social & intellectual decay. Case in point, as I recall, “Survivor” was the first of the onslaught of these ignorant & obnoxious television series. I believe that I watched one complete episode before turning to my dear wife, Jeri, and commenting; Jesus! What is this teaching our kids? It’s teaching them that lying, cheating, stealing, backstabbing i.e. anything is okay in the pursuit of victory. And here’s a bit of “reality” for those of you not afraid to be truly real; https://www.inverse.com/article/13603-psychology-tv-how-reality-programming-impacts-our-brains

 

Fast forward a decade and voila, we have the epitome of all that is worst in people as president. Who just coincidentally starred in “The Apprentice.” Yeah, it should’ve been called “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” or more accurately, “The Devil’s Apprentice.” I have often felt like a sort of modern-day Don Quixote because of some of my observations over the years i.e. how is it that we watch an artificial medium (mode of communication) to supposedly get a view of “reality?” This is like a double-negative in mathematics i.e. it cancels itself out. I think this may have all contributed to our enfeeblement?

Getting back to the narrator’s last comment, my question for you, my imaginary reader, is where are we able to find true refuge in this mad world we’ve created? And yeah, I know that many of you will offer suggestions like meditation, yoga, etc. but I’m asking about help for the average Joe who doesn’t have the time or the inclination to pursue these more esoteric paths.

 

The narrator asks, “How did the dream of a connected world tear us apart?” Well I would answer that this documentary is precisely about trying to answer that very question. Or, in brief, I’d say that human greed & stupidity is what’s tearing us apart. And don’t forget apathy, willful ignorance, & anti-intellectualism (a particular trait of Trump fans who’ve been angry for most of their lives for being put-down or ostracized for their ignorance but will never take responsibility for their lack of education or do anything about remedying the fact).

 

Moving along, the narrator asks; “Who is feeding us Fear and how?” Well duh? Trump is the most glaring example but yes, we need to look beyond the obvious reptilian from the Black Lagoon that Trump is. In a nutshell my friend, the corporate cockroaches i.e. those who see themselves as the Masters of the Universe—who just announced & not coincidentally, “U.S. Space Command will launch this month, ahead of Trump’s Space Force.” (USA Today, 8/20/19) —are as serious as a heart-attack.

Moreover, I submit for your consideration that Trump & his evangelical eunuch, Pence, aren’t the first space cadets. No, Reagan’s “Star Wars program,” was the tip-off for these dangerous loonies. After God knows how many billions of our tax dollars were flushed down the toilet under Reagan, the program was supposedly halted but I don’t believe it.

 

In 1997, the U.S. Air Force announced its goal of “Full Spectrum Dominance.” Hint: America’s true agenda isn’t freedom & democracy for the world but “our” total domination of all lands & all peoples i.e. we spend more on our military than all the other nations on Earth combined & we have over 900 military bases around the globe & God knows how many secret “black op” sites? And you wonder why we can’t afford free, high quality health care for our citizens?

 

Returning to the subject of who the fear mongers are, the next most glaring example is “Fox news.” I’ve been saying since roughly a year after Fox “news,” came into existence (roughly 20 years ago) that it is America’s version of Russia’s “Pravda” state newspaper. Sadly though, Goebbels (Hitler’s minister of propaganda) was correct when he said that the bigger the lie & the more often you repeat it, the more it becomes truth or fact—my paraphrasing. I have dubbed Fox “news,” the Fear & Hate channel & here’s another bit of history for ya; FDR declared; “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

 

You see, my imaginary reader, through time immemorial, the powers that be have sought to scare their subjects, or their citizens into submission to their authority. In other words, the old tactic of Divide & Conquer which military leaders have used probably even before recorded history? And what better & easier way to divide & conquer us than with the help of the social media platform, Facebook which has over two billion “commodities” formerly known as human beings.

 

Following this further, I didn’t notice how appropriate the name of the Trump’s campaign project to steal the election was until just now. They dubbed it “Project Alamo.” This really shouldn’t come as any great surprise given the fact that Trump, launched the “Birther movement” against Obama & his campaign to become president, was built upon his xenophobia & never-ending racist rhetoric primarily focused on Mexicans & to a slightly lesser degree, Muslims.

 

A recent guest on Ian Master’s program, “Background Briefing,” which I’ve been following off & on for over 30 years, noted that “Trump is a strategic racist” i.e. his racism isn’t just willy-nilly, no, it’s purposely planned & delivered so as to keep the public confused & divided.

 

“He uses racism by triggering two major sources of anxiety for many white people: economic insecurity and demographic change.”  https://haasinstitute.berkeley.edu/trumps-racism-isnt-just-racism-its-strategy  —Ian Haney Lopez

 

Think about it, “Project Alamo.” The perfect name for a campaign based on scapegoating Mexicans or Latinos in general. Perhaps the most vulnerable segment of our society? And the Alamo being the location of our mythical & courageous stand against the marauding Mexicans—we’re supposed to forget that it was us who invaded their country & stole:

 

The whole states of CaliforniaNevadaUtahArizonaNew Mexico and Texas, as well as parts of WyomingColorado, Oklahoma and Kansas,

 

from Mexico. And this is precisely why U.S. history as taught in our public education system is so packed with lies i.e. the powers that be realize that they must brainwash us into believing we’re always the good guy & the victims of invading hordes of criminals, rapists, drug dealers, etc. as Trump proclaims ad nauseam.

 

Furthermore, the narrator tells us that the Trump presidential campaign’s “digital arm i.e. Project Alamo at its peak was spending a million dollars a day on Facebook ads.” Naturally, Marky Mark Zuckerberg neglects to mention this whenever he tries to defend Facebook against its critics.

 

Moreover, the team from Cambridge Analytica worked in the same room with Trump’s campaign team but in their own corner of the room while working jointly on Project Alamo. And as the narrator pointed out; “Cambridge Analytica was the brain of the data center” in which both groups worked.

 

Enter “Paul Olivier Dehaye, a mathematician based in Switzerland who had been following Cambridge Analytica for over a year & became suspicious.” Dehaye & David Carroll, the narrator who brought the law suit against Cambridge Analytica, “realized that in order to send people personalized messages, you needed to be able to access their data.”

 

In their sales pitch to perspective customers, “Cambridge claimed to have 5,000 data points on every American voter.” Let me break down for you what these data points are referring to;

 

When people take surveys for statistical purposes or when the Census Bureau comes around and gets everybody’s information, information from one person is one data point for them. At the end of its research or survey, the company will have gathered many bits of information from many people. One bit of information equals one data pointhttps://study.com/academy/lesson/data-points-definition-lesson-quiz.html

 

 

In other words, from those seemingly innocent “personality tests” that Facebook suckered us into taking again & again, and other tools, Cambridge Analytica was able to accumulate over 5,000 bits of personal information on all of us who fell for the ruse. Things like what we read, our political leanings, our buying habits, hobbies, friends, drinking habits, etc. etc. etc. and this gave them the weapons they could turn around & use on us to manipulate us (some easier than others) into voting for Trump or not voting at all, etc.

 

As the narrator pointed out; “But this information was invisible & the question became, how to make the invisible visible?” Continuing on, “Dehaye’s hypothesis was that U.S. voter data was processed by Cambridge’s parent company in the U.K. & if this were true, the narrator, David Carroll, could sue using a British lawyer to force Cambridge Analytica to give him his data.”

 

Enter, Alexander Nix, CEO of Cambridge Analytica. “Nix focused on building an election business using people’s data to steer elections around the world—including Obama’s election to some extent.”

 

Let’s stop & reflect on this for a bit. Here was a company that bought our personal data from Facebook & then used our data to manipulate elections around the globe. Obviously, Zuckerberg has a lot more to answer for than the election of Trump but is he in prison? No, he got a light slap on the wrist financially speaking & continues doing business & claiming ignorance & innocence regarding these global crimes which have had serious consequences for people’s lives.[I’m adding this here after having aleady completed this essay; the fact that we are now a “post-literate” society & images and videos are the dominant mediums used to manipulate us, ponder the ramifications of this short video clip: Exhibit A: Donald Trump brought to us by “Reality T.V.” how about a nightmare brought to us by fake television?]

 

First of all, bear in mind that Facebook has two billion users around the world, obviously that’s quite a data base to draw from in terms of manipulating the hearts & minds of people. Cambridge meddled in & steered elections for their clients in Australia, India, Kenya, Malta, Mexico, U.K., and the U.S.

And Cambridge Analytica’s executives said in 2018 that the company had worked in more than 200 elections around the world, including in Trinidad and TobagoNigeria, the Czech RepublicArgentina,[57] and the Philippines (Rodrigo Duterte).[154]

 

I’m going to keep searching for a comprehensive list of all the elections that these British bastards rigged but this was all that I could find for the time being. I don’t know about you but this just staggers the mind, the fact that a single corporation could wreak such global havoc? Perhaps we’re headed for a global fascist state?

 

An important thing to keep in mind as we delve deeper into this colossal scandal is that all this data wasn’t gained by some nefarious hackers but was freely sold by Facebook to Cambridge Analytica. Zuckerberg, already one of the wealthiest men in America, a billionaire several times over, wasn’t satisfied & craved more power & more wealth. As the old adage goes, a capitalist is a guy who will sell you the rope with which to hang him. I for one, would love to see Capitalism fail and a truly Social form of economics take its place.

 

I want to emphasize here that we must never forget that it was good old Saint Obama who prosecuted more whistleblowers than all our other presidents combined. Yep! The full force of the U.S. government is brought down on whistleblowers who are the true patriots, like Edward Snowden, Thomas Drake, Edward Binney, John Kiriakou, J. Kirk Wiebe, Edward Loomis, & Chelsea Manning, but these companies like Facebook, Cambridge Analytica, or our NSA who ignored our Constitution, supposedly the bedrock of U.S. law & government, either receive a slap on the wrist or aren’t punished at all for their massive criminal acts.

 

Admittedly, I voted for Obama in his first bid to become president but a few weeks after he took office & he appointed Summers, Geithner, & Bernanke to just name a few, I knew that I had been duped & I thought I was pretty politically sophisticated with my 30 years of studying politics. Yeah, it became abundantly obvious that Obama was in the pockets of Wall St.

 

Do you remember Obama’s mantra “Change” that was literally on the lecterns he stood at in nearly every political speech he made during his first campaign for the presidency? And how he swore that his presidency would be the most transparent presidency ever? Well as the cynical point out, they are all liars. And I have to agree. Obama was & clearly still is in the pockets of the military/industrial/congressional complex and his crimes against humanity i.e. his drone war, his deportation of millions of immigrants, etc. will soon, if they haven’t already, disappear down the memory hole of the American public. Here’s a fragment on the “crimes” of a few of the whistleblowers he persecuted & prosecuted;

 

The story goes back to 2002, when three of the whistleblowers—Loomis, Wiebe and Binney—asked the Pentagon to investigate the NSA for wasting “millions and millions of dollars” on Trailblazer, which had been chosen as the agency’s flagship system for analyzing intercepted communications over a smaller and cheaper in-house program known as Thin Thread.  https://www.thenation.com/article/obamas-crackdown-whistleblowers/

 

 

Continuing with the Cambridge Analytica crime spree, after helping Obama in his election campaign, “they were then contracted to work for the Republican party & Ted Cruz went from last place to first place before Trump got the nomination.”

 

The film then shows a presentation by Nix called “The Power of Big Data and Psychographics.” To reiterate, the crucial data that Cambridge Analytica relied on to create their data base for manipulating people politically came from mostly those personality tests—several of which I took myself. Here’s a bit of insight into how the data gathered from those tests was used;

 

Psychometrics, sometimes also called psychographics, focuses on measuring psychological traits, such as personality. In the 1980s, two teams of psychologists developed a model that sought to assess human beings based on five personality traits, known as the “Big Five.” These are: openness (how open you are to new experiences?), conscientiousness (how much of a perfectionist are you?), extroversion (how sociable are you?), agreeableness (how considerate and cooperative you are?) and neuroticism (are you easily upset?). Based on these dimensions—they are also known as OCEAN, an acronym for openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, neuroticism—we can make a relatively accurate assessment of the kind of person in front of us. This includes their needs and fears, and how they are likely to behave. The “Big Five” has become the standard technique of psychometrics. But for a long time, the problem with this approach was data collection, because it involved filling out a complicated, highly personal questionnaire. Then came the Internet. And Facebook. And Kosinski.  https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/mg9vvn/how-our-likes-helped-trump-win

 

I don’t know about you but this kind of makes me feel like a lab rat? And I hate to sound so pessimistic but with all that this film has revealed & the knowledge that gerrymandering, tampering with election machines, etc. etc. etc. I am tempted to just give up and run away to some deserted island. But that’s soon not even going to be an option with the rising seas thanks to global warming & Trump’s sabotaging of every govt. agency whose mission is to protect the environment.

 

However, I still have some fight in me & will continue to fight the good fight even though I feel like I’m often spitting in the wind especially in post-literate America.

 

The narrator then shares with the audience that Cambridge targeted those “who were persuadable.” (I’d simply say, those who were/are weak-minded and/or ignorant) Consequently, “personality drives behavior and behavior influences how you vote.” Logically, “they then started to target people with highly targeted video content” i.e. fake news & videos claiming Hillary Clinton ran a child sex ring out of a pizza parlor & they drank children’s blood, etc. —the sort of stuff right up Alex jones (Trump’s confidante) alley. Or as I refer to these ridiculously gullible people, The Duck Dynasty Klan (Trump’s base).

 

Of course, after their success in putting Trump in office, “Cambridge felt they were on their way to becoming a billion-dollar company.”

 

Enter Carole Cadwalladr, “investigative journalist for The Guardian, she’d been investigating Cambridge and its ties to the Brexit campaign.” And enter, Nigel Farage “with the Brexit campaign who is a friend of Steve Bannon’s.” And for those of you who may not follow politics very closely, Steve Bannon was like George W. Bush’s Darth Vader, Karl Rove. Except Bannon was kicked to the curb early in Trump’s triumphant reign of terror in the White House, well at least publicly—he may still be operating behind the curtain?

 

Bannon had to leave because of his comments to a reporter about Trump & my guess is that it may have also had something to do with the exposure of Breitbart News as an extremist “conservative” media outlet. Yeah, they’re about as “conservative” as the John Birch Society. Bannon is a fear & hate monger par excel lance. And since his departure from Team Trump, he’s been sowing the seeds of hate & racism in Europe. One last note regarding Breitbart of which Bannon was the executive chairman, uh, correction, this deserves a bit more than one last note. Robert Mercer is a hedge fund billionaire who has played a significant role also in the rise of the Trump Terror Tyranny (my phrase).

 

Robert Mercer is the money behind Donald Trump. But then, I will come to learn, Robert Mercer is the money behind an awful lot of things. He was Trump’s single biggest donor. Mercer started backing Ted Cruz, but when he fell out of the presidential race he threw his money – $13.5m of it – behind the Trump campaign….

The billionaire funding Breitbart that inspires mass murderers like the guy in El Paso who wanted to kill as many Mexicans as possible

 

One of its funds, Medallion, which manages only its employees’ money, is the most successful in the world – generating $55bn so far. And since 2010, Mercer has donated $45m to different political campaigns – all Republican – and another $50m to non-profits – all rightwing, ultra-conservative. This is a billionaire who is, as billionaires are wont, trying to reshape the world according to his personal beliefs….

 

so to gauge his beliefs you have to look at where he channels his money: a series of yachts, all called Sea Owl; a $2.9m model train set; climate change denial (he funds a climate change denial thinktank, the Heartland Institute); and what is maybe the ultimate rich man’s plaything – the disruption of the mainstream media. In this he is helped by his close associate Steve Bannon, Trump’s campaign manager and now chief strategist. The money he gives to the Media Research Center, with its mission of correcting “liberal bias” is just one of his media plays. There are other bigger, and even more deliberate strategies, and shining brightly, the star at the centre of the Mercer media galaxy, is Breitbart.

 

It was $10m of Mercer’s money that enabled Bannon to fund Breitbart – a rightwing news site, set up with the express intention of being a Huffington Post for the right. It has launched the careers of Milo Yiannopoulos and his like, regularly hosts antisemitic and Islamophobic views, and is currently being boycotted by more than 1,000 brands after an activist campaign. It has been phenomenally successful: the 29th most popular site in America with 2bn page views a year. It’s bigger than its inspiration, the Huffington Post, bigger, even, than PornHub. It’s the biggest political site on Facebook. The biggest on Twitter….

 

But there was another reason why I recognized Robert Mercer’s name: because of his connection to Cambridge Analytica, a small data analytics company. He is reported to have a $10m stake in the company, which was spun out of a bigger British company called SCL Group. It specializes in “election management strategies” and “messaging and information operations”, refined over 25 years in places like Afghanistan and Pakistan. In military circles this is known as “psyops” – psychological operations. (Mass propaganda that works by acting on people’s emotions.)

 

…. We’re not quite in the alternative reality where the actual news has become “FAKE news!!!” But we’re almost there. Out on Twitter, the new transnational battleground for the future, someone I follow tweets a quote by Marshall McLuhan, the great information theorist of the 60s. “World War III will be a guerrilla information war,” it says. “With no divisions between military and civilian participation.”

By that definition we’re already there.

 

Guess what? These six paragraphs that I copied and pasted here are from an article by none other than Carole Cadwalladr https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/feb/26/robert-mercer-breitbart-war-on-media-steve-bannon-donald-trump-nigel-farage

 

 

Are you beginning to see the big picture i.e. it’s the super-wealthy, the 1%, who again & again we witness, are/have already de facto bought governments around the world & will never cease in their agenda of enslaving us all? An exaggeration? Consider the fate of unions in America. “Fifty years ago, nearly a third of U.S. workers belonged to a union. Today, it’s one in 10.” https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2015/02/23/385843576/50-years-of-shrinking-u

 

 

I’m going to assume that you’ve at least heard of how Walmart crushes any employee who dares to mention the word “union?” The G.O.P. (Greedy Old Pigs) declared publicly as soon as FDR established the New Deal to help alleviate the destruction done to American workers & families because of the Great Depression that was brought on by the greed of the Wall St. wolves, that they’ll fight tooth & nail to destroy every single aspect of the New Deal. And they’ve been true to their word. Also note the G.O.P.’s declaration after Obama was elected that they’d do everything they could to block every single piece of legislation he introduced & they did and he kept saying; “Can’t we just get along?”

 

I’d like to remind you of a few nuggets of wisdom; It’s better die standing than to live on your knees. And, if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything. This reminds me of why I’m so opposed to Nancy Pelosi i.e. she keeps blocking the DNC from impeaching Trump with her rationale that they couldn’t succeed because the Senate is controlled by the G.O.P. Well my response is that this is total bullshit! You don’t only take on fights that you know you can win, it’s a matter of principles & values. All Americans should see all the evidence of Trump’s reign of error & terror and decide for themselves as to his guilt or innocence. I believe what would obviously become a long & detailed investigation would persuade many of Trump’s supporters to abandon him. So, it doesn’t matter really if the Dems were successful in impeaching him, what matters is that his phenomenal incompetence, greed, & destruction would be out there and more comprehensible. I am simply befuddled as to how they could impeach Clinton for a blow-job yet Trump has committed thousands of illegal & immoral (sexually molested dozens of women) acts but Nancy says No, we shouldn’t take on this fight? We’ve witnessed the DNC’s brilliance in terms of their political strategies, time & time again and that’s why we’re in this unholy place!

 

Please excuse the long-winded diatribe but this shit gets my blood boiling. Okay, back to the drawing board. Ms. Cadwalladr (Carole) goes on to say that “she tracked down all the ex-Cambridge employees & found Chris Wyley who said he’d talk to her & that he had helped set up Cambridge Analytica.”

 

Enter Chris Wyley, data engineer; “Cambridge is a full-service propaganda machine.” The narrator then informs us that Steve Bannon was the editor of Breitbart & said; “If you want to fundamentally change society, you first have to break it.” This should send chills down all our spines, well those of us who aren’t mere globs of protoplasm with no hearts, souls, or any resemblance of a human being.

 

Bannon’s statement isn’t just another asinine comment by a right-wing nut, No, this is precisely what Trump & what those who pushed for Brexit are all about i.e. the utter destruction of their societies. Need I remind you of Trump’s first actions as president? He appointed as the head of every one of our most critical agencies, not only the least qualified people he could find but also those whose sole mission was to sabotage the very dept. or agency they headed.

 

Ben Carson, Betsy DeVos, Rick Perry, Mike Pompeo (Christian Fascist), Steve Mnuchin (who got rich illegally foreclosing on thousands of California homeowners), Wilbur Ross, Rex Tillerson. Supreme Court—Kavanaugh (sexual predator), Press Secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders-Propaganda Minister along with Kelly Anne Conway, Attorney Generals, Sessions (spineless racist), & Barr (mafia lawyer for Trump). The list goes on & on & on. You’ll have to do your own homework from here if you give a damn? Oh yeah, we definitely mustn’t forget Vice President Pence, the Christian soldier like Eric Prince (Betsy DeVos’ brother & mercenary for despots around the world who love murdering in the name of God).

 

Before winning (stealing) the election, Trump campaigned on “Draining the Swamp.” His quaint euphemism for cleaning up Washington D.C. Yeah, right. This tantrum throwing tyrant has been doing just what Bannon told him he should do i.e. break the whole system so the Alex Jones racists & corporate cockroaches could have a free hand in creating a Fascist New World Order.

 

You might be thinking just about now that I’m off in Alex Jones’ Conspiracy Carnival but if you’ll take five minutes to look up what’s called PNAC (Project for the New American Century), and realize that the fascists among us have been plotting & steadily working towards their ideal state for decades—sometimes they go below the radar for a while when their agendas are a bit too public. Here’s a partial list of their alumni & believers;

 

Newt Gingrich, Dick Cheney, Elliot Abrams, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, William Bennett (Secretary of Education under two presidents), Jeb Bush, Steve Forbes (Forbes Business magazine), John Bolton (currently strongest cheerleader for war with Iran), & Richard Perle to just name a few of the most recognizable names in this Hall of Shame. {Need I remind/inform you of the role these fascists played in starting the wars in Afghanistan & Iraq?}

 

Obviously, Trump didn’t really want to drain the swamp but rather, re-stock it with the slimiest creatures from the Black Lagoon in which he has resided his whole life. Besides, if he actually did drain that proverbial “swamp,” where would his Duck Dynasty “Deliverance” homeboys find their dates for the Deviant’s Ball? Yep! Trump’s cabinet picks are like placing his buddy, Jeffrey Epstein, in charge of security at a girls’ summer camp. Doesn’t that just warm your heart?

recall the video of Trump bragging he could grab women by their pussy? Here he is giving Jeffrey Epstein some tips

 

Admittedly, I veer off-course perhaps a bit here & there but that’s because I know how ill-informed most of my fellow citizens are & I hope to help them connect the dots. Not that I have the corner on the truth but I have spent over 30 years in serious pursuit of that elusive truth & therefore feel that I have earned the right to speak with some degree of authority. Hell, look who we have as president. It’s a pretty safe bet that he’s never read a single book of substance from cover to cover.

 

Returning to our film, Chris Wylie who filled us in on Steve Bannon, goes on to quote Bannon; “It’s only when you break it (our govt.) that you can then remold it into your vision of a great society.” I want to interject here that sure, our government & our business culture is corrupt as Hell but to dismantle our govt in the name of saving it is like burning your house down because a forest fire was close by & thinking you’d save it from a worse fire. This is utter absurdity & madness and only misanthropic & mercenary minds could think this the right path to a healthy society.

 

Wylie continues; “This was the weapon Bannon wanted to use to wage his Culture War.” Note how frequently the so-called “Conservatives” whine of the culture war being waged against them. “Wylie went to professors at Cambridge University (how appropriate) to ask for their ideas on how to pursue their mission & they showed him the ‘one click personality test.’

 

They got special permission to use apps on Facebook to harvest the info & also go into their entire friend network & pull out all their friends’ data as well. They didn’t just target you as a voter but also as a personality. Their app only needed to tap into a couple hundred thousand people to build a psychological profile of every voter in America. People had no idea their data was being taken in this way. This was a grossly unethical experiment, the psychology of an entire country without their awareness or consent.”

 

But hey, I’m just exaggerating things, right? And it’s unfair of me to label Facebook as fascist for this simple & innocent oversight on their part, right? Remember, fascism is the combination/marriage if you like, of big business & government with the common goal/agenda of controlling the public or the people. And if this form of control & spying on us doesn’t bother you, you’d be right at home in Putin’s Russia & are probably understanding of Trump’s consistent kissing of Putin’s ass. How patriotic of you? I bet your ancestors are rolling over in their graves in disgust with your betrayal of what America used to stand for.

 

Continuing on, “They were playing with the psychology of an entire nation within the context of a democratic process.” I take umbrage with the use of the word ‘playing’ and ‘within the context of a democratic process.’ First of all, this wasn’t mere playing unless you’re referring to a diabolical game played by would-be Masters of the Universe. And secondly, unless the author of the phrase “within the context of a democratic process” means that this was a legitimate act in a democratic system of government, I am lost, confused, & couldn’t disagree more!

 

How in the Hell does democracy come into play within a corporation? Corporations are private tyrannies & the moment an employee walks through their employer’s door, their rights go out the window i.e. your employer can listen in on your phone calls, search your locker, forbid you from talking about forming a union, etc. etc. etc. And note that bars/pubs are private corporations & that’s why they can stop us from talking about politics in their bars. Food for thought?

 

Yeah, many, if not most people have no idea of just how little power or rights we have in our workplaces. Of course, Walmart is perhaps the most blatantly anti-union corporation & many of us realize that. Gee, I wonder why Walmart is the most profitable corporation in America & the Walmart family are among the richest in the U.S.?

 

Here’s a claim made by Alexander Nix, remember him? He was the CEO of Cambridge Analytica; “We don’t have Facebook data & we don’t use Facebook data, but we do use Facebook as a platform to advertise on.” Can you believe such audacity? In Cambridge’s sales videos, etc. they bragged about having 5,000 data points on every American voter but I guess all that data just somehow magically appeared in Cambridge’s lap?

 

I wonder why the Trump campaign was paying Cambridge a million dollars a day? Could it be that their advertising was that costly but didn’t have any of our personal data? Wylie commented; “When people see the extent of the surveillance, I think they’re going to be shocked.”

Maybe? But like everything else in this mad world, the public gets upset for a minute or two & soon goes back to their smart phones & checking the latest number of “likes” they got.

 

Well I’m definitely not one of the Walking Dead like my fellow Americans & like a bulldog, I keep on keeping on in my fight against the corporate cockroaches & their fascist assault on us all.

 

David Carroll, who brought the lawsuit against Cambridge; “It’s crazy that I have to mount a risky, year-long court battle to get my Voter Profile.”

 

A bit of good news though; “Facebook stock falls by 6% or $120 billion because of Carroll’s lawsuit finally getting some attention. Facebook knew of this data collection by Cambridge over two years ago but didn’t go public about it until Carroll’s lawsuit caused Cambridge’s headquarters in London was raided.”

 

Isn’t it interesting to note how CEO’s memories often seem to lapse, just like many politicians, after they’ve been exposed for wrongdoing? I remember when Reagan was finally made to testify behind closed doors re: the Iran/Contra Scandal & out of something like 280 questions put to him, roughly 265 times his response was; I can’t remember, I don’t recall, etc. If you or I tried that in court, our asses would be behind bars in short order.

 

Yep! “Facebook claimed to not notice that 50 million people’s data had been breeched but every time it’s my sister’s dog’s birthday, I get a notification.” (some comedian’s witty observation)

 

However, what’s not funny is expressed by Carroll; “People don’t want to admit that propaganda works because to admit it means confronting our own susceptibilities, our horrific lack of privacy, & our hopeless dependencies on tech platforms that are ruining our democracies on various attack surfaces.”

 

Yes indeed! If you’re around my age (66) you grew up hearing about communist propaganda but there was never any mention of American or capitalist propaganda. In fact, in the early days of Advertising & the Public Relations industry, it was more honestly referred to as propaganda. And as Chomsky points out, these are powerful institutions in America. May I suggest that you look up Noam Chomsky on You Tube re: this subject, it’ll definitely be worth your time.

 

Moreover, I can definitely attest to the fact that people don’t want to acknowledge the power that advertising has over us. I’ve been trying to clue people in for decades but I’m usually dismissed as some good-natured nut case.

 

Wylie continues to discuss the U.K.’s enquiry into ‘fake news.’ “When you’re busted for doping in the Olympics, you lose your medal, but we allow cheating in our democratic process. What about next time? What about the time after that? You shouldn’t be allowed to win by cheating.” But of course, Trump did and the spineless DNC won’t even impeach him! In this new age, morality & ethics are a joke, its dog eat dog & we have the most immoral president in U.S. history flouting the U.S. legal system daily & grinning his ass off in arrogant defiance.

 

“We have met the enemy and he is us.” —Pogo

 

I included this famous quip from a comic strip to point out that we are now witnessing the steady dismantling of our democracy albeit it has been on shaky ground for quite some time preceding Trump. Our general apathy & our intellectual laziness coupled with the harmful aspects of this new technology i.e. Smart phones, social media platforms & apps., etc. has all but rendered us as helpless as a turtle on its back. And the rapacious Republican party has no conscience & clearly craves power so much it’d rather watch America descend into chaos & anarchy than stand up to Trump & call him out for the vile, most despicable individual imaginable. Here is a guy who laid out the toxicity of social media clearer than anything I’ve come across;

Without a doubt, apathy in combination with innocent ignorance & willful ignorance will be on America’s tombstone as future generations look back on this stage in history, perhaps the final stage at the rate we’re destroying our environment. And this in conjunction with a dope in the oval office who knows even less about world history than the average third grade student, presents a truly frightening scenario.

 

Though I could be way off base because the generations after mine have been raised in a game & movie world of zombies & vampires—some of which are portrayed as having some redeeming human qualities such as sensitivity. Moreover, it seems the majority of Hollywood’s top hits are doomsday & apocalyptic visions of our not too distant future so maybe a large portion of Americans aren’t as worried as I am about the way we’re headed?

 

For example, early in this film, Carroll, the protagonist is talking about what these “social media” platforms are doing to us & a young, female student in his class says that the ads don’t really bother her perhaps because she grew up in this world. She goes on to ask him; “So, at what point do things become sour (I assume she means bad?)

Ah! Here we arrive at perhaps a vital turning point? I argue that we have already passed the critical juncture because for young people like this student to admit they’re not troubled by the gross manipulation we’re already experiencing is a telltale sign that we’re half-way lost already.

And for-the-record, Snowden again gave us fair warning about how Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Pal Talk, AOL, Skype, You Tube, & Apple to only name the most prominent amongst these corporate betrayers, willingly assists the status quo in their on-going agenda of enslaving us.

 

Does this worry the younger generations? Apparently not. They gleefully & blindly carry on using these platforms & tools of enslavement. I know, I’m sounding a bit Alex Jones? Sorry, but for an old fart like me who grew up in a very different America in which we didn’t even have voice machines to record our missed calls, I am perhaps much more aware of these intrusions into our privacy & it sure as Hell does bother & anger me. By-the-way, perhaps this will cause your heart rate to at least go up a few points, these same corporate giants who are making billions exploiting us via our data, pay next to nothing in taxes. Do you give a shit about that?

 

Getting back to the documentary, Wylie speaking before a U.K. enquiry commission re: fake news; “Someone else you should be speaking to is Brittany Kaiser.” Now the plot really begins to thicken because Ms. Kaiser is the other central character in this drama, & she played a very significant part in this coup overthrowing democracies around the globe. And I must confess that I had my suspicions while watching this film for the first time.

Cute & pixie-like as a teenager to this; the price of selling your soul?

 

But watching it again a few days ago, I have become a lot more distrustful of whatever she says in her defense. For now, I’m just going to toss out there a few observations & my reactions in case I forget them later on. First of all, the film starts out at a “Burning Man” festival in Nevada & shows Brittany, dressed like a typical tribal person at this annual event, write with a marker on this wooden structure where participants inscribe something profound, I assume? She writes on it; “’Cambridge Analytica.”

Like I said, I glossed over this seemingly insignificant act in my first viewing of this film but now, I wonder if this could be a sort of Freudian Slip? In other words, could it be that her work for Cambridge Analytica is what she’s actually the proudest of?

 

You see, once the full extent of Cambridge Analytica’s crimes begins to be revealed, Kaiser starts pretending that she’s a whistleblower who helped bring them down. But she knew what they were doing for at least two years prior to the fall & took great pride in helping Trump “win” the U.S. election. She was as critical to their success as Chris Wylie was. His talent was in data engineering & her’s was in developing their business model & their PR face if-you-will.

 

Kaiser’s ego was glowing in the limelight of the attention she received in photo ops with Trump, the fact that she had her own set of keys to Steve Bannon’s townhouse in Washington D.C.,  etc. And we see her throughout the film staying at very expensive & posh hotels around the world, sipping a cocktail in one of those “Infinity” pools at some luxury resort in Thailand, etc.

 

Yet, once again, after Cambridge is on public trial so-to-speak, Kaiser tells us that her family lost their home after the 2008 economic crash & her father’s brain cancer and she had to make money to help her family out. Yeah, that’s suppose to excuse her Faustian deal with the devil i.e. the Republican party & Trump in particular.

 

Moreover, at another point in the film it is revealed that she admits to carrying two sets of business cards. They don’t specify as to what these two sets are but it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to guess. I’m confident that one set is for playing the concerned environmentalist & worker for human rights when she was young and the other set is for her rich patrons in the corporate/political world.

 

Admittedly, what I’m about to say could be seen as chauvinistic or misogynist or something but what the fuck, here goes; earlier glimpses of Ms. Kaiser when she was young & working on human rights campaigns, etc., she looked physically cute, cheerful, & positive but after her entry into the nefarious world of the corporate cockroaches & their political lapdogs, I believe you can see her physical being manifest her moral decay? And for-the-record, in the film we witness a scene in which she is being questioned by some sort of judge or attorney, I presume? And she is asked something like, “Have you ever provided data to an intelligence agency?” Her eyes say it all i.e. she stops dead in her tracks verbally-speaking, her eyebrows raise up & her eyes nervously twitch back & forth for a while before she answers in the negative after a pregnant pause.

 

Okay, back to the script from the documentary; “She (Kaiser) was the go-getter, the initiator of the Cambridge contract with Trump (my phrasing). “She spoke at the CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) with Kelly Anne Conway in 2016.” Hopefully I don’t have to explain to you who Kelly Anne Conway is? Just in case I do? Kelly Anne is Trump’s number one apologist & she can rationalize whatever horrible thing he says or does i.e. she’s his greatest ass-kisser or brown-noser!

I wish she’d go back to her alternative planet

 

Continuing; “She (Kaiser) was at the lavish party on election night for Trump along with Rebecca Mercer” (Robert Mercer’s daughter, owner of Breitbart) and proudly posing for pics with Donald the Dastardly (my phrasing). To reiterate my opinion, Kaiser tried to save her ass by informing on Cambridge once their records, documents, etc. were seized by the British police.

 

Kaiser, “The reason why Facebook, Google, Amazon, etc. are so powerful is because last year, ‘Data’ surpassed Oil as the world’s most valuable ‘commodity.’” Remember friends, we are that commodity, in other words, all the data we supply these so-called “social platforms” with is our ‘value’ in this Brave New World (Aldous Huxley).

Enter Paul Hilder, writer & self-described, Political Technologist. In my opinion, he was basically an apologist & spinmeister for Kaiser during & after her fall from the jet-set insiders’cabal of wealth & politics. And here’s a fun fact for you, “When Kaiser met with Trump’s campaign manager in 2015, she wondered why it looked familiar & then realized they were on the set of ‘The Apprentice.’ Trump’s campaign headquarters was a ‘Reality T.V. set.’”

 

I’m sure this bit of trivia doesn’t bother or strike those of you who grew-up watching ‘Reality T.V.,’ as out of the norm. Let me be clear, this is “reality” turned on its head & again reveals just how far down the rabbit hole we have fallen. “Reality T.V.” is for ignorant & intellectually lazy people who are accustomed to spectacle, superficiality, & not straining their brains. Yep! I said it loud & proud. And I don’t give a fuck if you dismiss me as just another example of those “East Coast elite who look down their noses on everyone who isn’t a member of their club.” Again, I grew up in a single parent, working class family & my mom worked two or three jobs at a time trying to make ends meet so go fuck yourselves if you think/believe me an elitist!

 

Furthermore, I’d better say it again for those of you who may not grasp the simple facts of life i.e. T.V. is an artificial medium (it’s not reality). Reality is going to work every day, paying your bills, raising your kids, worrying about losing your job, whether your pension will be there when you retire, your loved ones’ health, etc. etc. etc. This crap posing as reality is pure bullshit i.e. staged drama to suck in the gullible. Therefore, watching & believing an artificial medium (mode of communicating) and on top of that, believing the circus acts they claim are true/honest portrayals of life, is akin to believing everything a used car salesman or a politician says. Comprende? (Spanish for Comprehend?)

 

By-the-way, I bet many of you haven’t caught on yet that Trump’s continual dismissal of “fake news,” is or would be very amusing if it weren’t so devastating to us all because like his fake “reality” show that made him so familiar to millions of Americans who watched it, everything about Trump is fake i.e. his wealth, his celebrity, his business success, etc. etc. etc. This is why he’s on a constant pep rally to his base (lacking or indicating the lack of higher qualities of mind or spirit)

“base.” I don’t think there’s ever been a political leader since Hitler, that felt the need to keep on holding public rallies after having won the presidency?

 

To me this just reveals how great his sense of insecurity is & that he must keep on feeding his ego or he’ll deflate like the hot air balloon that he in fact is & he will fly away into obscurity & infamy. And speaking of “infamy”

Very bad reputation; notoriety.

The condition of being infamous; disgrace.

An evil or criminal act that is publicly known.

 

I’m not normally a betting man but I’m absolutely positive that Trump will go down in history as the most infamous, notorious, noxious president throughout the history of the United States & I bet that the majority of all those who voted for him & cheered him in his Nazi rallies will hang their heads in disgrace for the rest of their lives. How I wish I could be there & smirk as I said to each of them; Yeah, you were abysmally (Resembling an abyss in depth; unfathomable)

stupid to have fallen for such a grotesque (Characterized by ludicrous, repulsive, or incongruous distortion, as of appearance or manner. synonymugly.)

human being’s con job!

 

Some may ask why I’m so harsh in my comments here? Duh! Consider all those poor immigrant children who were separated from their parents & the psychological devastation on their lives. I could go on ad infinitum about the harm physically, mentally, emotionally, & spiritually caused by this denizen (An inhabitant; a resident.) of the deepest, darkest parts of the human psyche who only cares about enriching himself at the expense of all of humanity! So yeah, I have no qualms (
An uneasy feeling about the propriety or rightness of a course of action.) whatsoever about insulting those who helped empower this human monster.

 

In simple terms, in the mid to late 1980s, I was an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher in L.A. both during the day at the secondary level & at night as an Adult Education teacher. Many of my students were from El Salvador, Nicaragua, & Mexico and they had seen things I hope to never witness!

 

One student in particular, Maria, who was from Nicaragua told me a story that chilled me to the bone. The Contras captured her sister who was nine months pregnant, and slit open her belly, pulled out her baby & slit its throat in front of her as she was dying. Reagan championed the Contras throughout his presidency & likened them to our Founding Fathers claiming they were defenders of freedom & democracy. I could go on & on but if you give a shit, you’ll do further research on your own.

 

Bottom-line, Reagan was the precursor to what morphed into the Trump phenomenon i.e. Reagan marked a turning point in American history, a clear betrayal of the working class & the middle class by scapegoating immigrants & all the victims of the rapacious rich. Another historical flashback for ya; One of Reagan’s first acts as president was to fire the air traffic controllers who were on strike due to unsafe skies, for life! And this sent a clear message to corporate America i.e. it’s open season on unions.

At times, yeah, I can somewhat relate to those who prefer to be blind & ignorant to this tsunami of terribly depressing information & knowledge but to turn a blind-eye to these crimes against humanity is the coward’s way out!

 

Why is it that we never tire of all the Hollywood blockbusters that glorify our soldiers in their physical acts of valor but rarely acknowledge let alone, glorify the intellectual & ethical heroes who stood up against our warmongers or the corporate cockroaches who like termites, have weakened our house to the point of collapse?

 

Returning to the film, Hilder points out “The reality is that a large-scale data-mining company identified the triggers that are going to ‘move’ people.” Translation: Cambridge Analytica simply refined the age-old “hot button topics” guaranteed to fire-up the rubes (An unsophisticated country person.)  formerly summarized as “God, Guns, & Gays.”

 

You know, the unholy trinity by people like our president of vice, Mike Pence, who doesn’t even trust himself to have lunch with a woman without his wife present. So much for that “Christian” faith in the power of belief in God & Jesus i.e. says more about the moral/ethical weakness of the Jesus-Jumpers than it ever does about the so-called sinners.

 

I apologize again, it’s so hard not to elaborate on these seemingly unrelated details but believe me, they aren’t unrelated, they’re all connecting dots in the general unraveling of our government, our society, & our culture. And like Bannon & Trump’s goal of destroying every last vestige of what we used to call America, the Mike Pence Walking Dead “Christians,” also pray for our complete disintegration in their fervent hope of turning us into an American version of the Taliban where women who dare to speak-up can be stoned to death.

I can only presume & hope that any who may be reading these words must care about our fellow human beings otherwise, they wouldn’t be reading such religious or political blasphemy?

 

Hilder then asks a very profound question; “What does this say about individual freedom, autonomy, and democracy? To my mind, this is the crux (The basic, central, or critical point or feature) of the film. In other words, have we ceased to be autonomous, free agents with free will as the “Christians” claim we are, or have we morphed into automatons easily manipulated into following our master’s agenda?

 

In ancient times i.e. the 1950s & 60s as I was growing up, the powers that be had at least a modicum of respect for our intellectual abilities hence the appeals to our rational faculties. Yet with the so-called “technological advances,” we have gradually become enslaved by our lower functioning, primal or reptilian brains. As a consequence, it’s become far easier to manipulate us today than it was when I was growing up. And the prima facie evidence is none other than Trump, the lowest common denominator on the human scale.

 

And Trump’s handmaiden of evil, Brittany Kaiser, attempts to rationalize her dastardly deeds with; “We’re educating people about other options and if they’re on the fence, they can be persuaded to go another way. This is their own choice.”

 

I almost gagged when I heard this! Yeah “we’re educating people about other options,” as if it were some innocuous (not harmful or injurious; harmless) agenda on the part of Cambridge Analytica in their neutral, good-natured campaign paid for by Robert Mercer under the direction of Steve Bannon to help their buddy, Donald Trump in his honest campaign for the presidency of the most powerful nation on Earth.

 

In my not so humble opinion, this campaign by Cambridge Analytica was waged against every American voter & citizen and was about as “harmless” as the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Indeed, this obscenity Kaiser submitted was akin also to Mao’s “Re-education Camps.”

 

Throughout history, intellectuals have been frequent targets of tyrannical regimes to suppress political dissent. But Chinese communist leader Mao Zedong himself boasted about taking it a step further.

After the Chinese Communist Party took power in 1949, Mao had instilled a climate of fear and terror.  In the late 1940s to early 1950s, he mobilized Chinese peasants to kill off the landlord class, resulting in a death toll that various estimates place from the hundreds of thousands, to up to several million. In some areas, public trials became the norm, and Mao’s politicized peasants became judge, jury, and executioner of the landlord class in China. Amid the repressive climate, intellectuals seemingly lacked a voice to say anything about the communist party.

 

https://www.theepochtimes.com/the-biggest-anti-intellectual-movement-in-history_2234683.html

 

You see, my imaginary friend, there has been a major & consistent thread amongst all authoritarian regimes or dictatorships throughout history & that is anti-intellectualism. What is that you may wonder? [don’t forget that this was/is Communist China whom we fought the Vietnam war against supposedly but soon thereafter became our trading partner & Communist Russia now under the control of the Russian mafia i.e. Putin, is Trump’s dearest friend along with North Korea’s perverted dictator]

 

Well, it’s been a significant part of our culture since the beginning of our nation although it’s a sort of oxymoron to combine “culture” and “anti-intellectualism” in the same sentence. In brief, look at Trump’s repeated attacks on the “East Coast elites.” This is code or dog-whistle politics for blaming intellectuals for just about everything that is wrong with America. {Did you notice the mention of Mao’s use of fear & terror? Sound familiar? Trump’s never-ending rally.}

 

Of course, Trump is counting on his base not knowing much about Trump’s own history & his massive inferiority complex because of his rejection by the New York elite. And Trump capitalized on the general sense of frustration & anger by so many of our citizens who’ve been fucked-over by the elite of Wall St. But what really blew my mind was that so many who had been screwed by the 1%, the corporate cockroach elite, could actually believe that Trump who is clearly a member of their class at least financially & in terms of not giving a fuck about employees or the environment or the law etc. etc. etc., was one of them & qualified to speak for them? Here’s a look into Trump’s family business that clearly shows his claim to fame of being a self-made billionaire has all been a grand scam. I suggest you watch it before any of the other videos because it may very well be pulled soon by either Trump lawyers or Showtime?

Do you recall that quote from the comic strip “Pogo,” that I printed above? Get it? We are our own worst enemies because we internalize the “social propaganda” fed to us by the corporate owned media. And it’s gotten so absurd that those who believe in Trump, actually think he’s going to help them. Yeah, one of the greediest bastards to ever walk upright & never ceases in his bragging about his mythological talents, intelligence, accomplishments, etc. is their Knight in Shining Armor.

 

I know that it’s highly unlikely but if you’d care to invest a few minutes in your well-being, you should research the history of how Trump has screwed the vast majority of people who’ve worked for him as both short-term contract workers or full-time employees. Then tell me again what a wonderful guy he is.

 

Speaking of “wonderful,” it’s time to return to Cambridge Analytica’s most admirable Ms. Kaiser; “Working for Human Rights wasn’t satisfying because I couldn’t see the results of my work but when I worked for the U.S. Republican party, I could.”

Translation: She made very little money working for noble causes such as human rights but when she moved to the dark side, she was amply rewarded & clearly enjoying the lifestyle as evident in the film.

 

Pursuing Ms. Kaiser’s personal degradation, she was approached by Alexander Nix, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica who unabashedly (
Not disconcerted or embarrassed; poised.) said, “Let me get you drunk and steal your secrets.” Apparently, that’s all it took to turn Ms. Kaiser from the former fighter for human rights to a lackey for the rich & famous. So much for her personal “integrity.” Funny that Mr. Nix was so up-front about his agenda because this is just what the “social media” has done to us i.e. it’s gotten us drunk on the intoxicating illusion of meeting new people & making thousands of friends around the globe while it steals our secrets & sells them to corporate cockroaches & gives them to the government surveillance agencies who have been overthrowing other governments for decades with propaganda, murder, etc.

“She turned ‘Conservative’ and started dressing posh & speaking more ‘refined.’ She became an NRA member & said, I think the main problem in U.S. politics is that people are so polarized (neglecting to mention her role in polarizing the American public) and therefore can’t work together & can’t get anything done (again neglecting the fact that the G.O.P. stated from the beginning of Obama’s presidency that they had one goal i.e. to block every single piece of legislation that he attempted to pass).

 

Evidently, Ms. Kaiser was so “wired-in” that right on camera in this documentary, she showed that she was able to pose a question to Zuckerberg that would be asked by one of the U.S. senators the next day in the hearing before Congress that Zuckerberg was forced to appear before.

 

Her question? “How much of Facebook’s revenue comes directly from Facebook’s monetization of people’s personal data?” Yes, a damn good question but clearly an attempt to distract from Cambridge Analytica’s responsibility in this high crime against democracy & free elections.

 

A “devil’s advocate” might’ve asked in return; And how much did your company profit from this illegal & immoral contract with the G.O.P. and Trump’s campaign & your companies use of the Facebook data you used to manipulate the U.S. election in Trump’s favor?

 

Moreover, Kaiser goes on to say; “We always spent the vast majority of our money for ads or political campaigns on Facebook because it gets the best results.”

 

Stop for a minute! In one breath she is criticizing/attacking Facebook for the money it took from the Trump campaign & in her next breath, she’s admitting that Cambridge Analytical used Facebook because “it gets the best results.” Does “speaking out of both sides of her mouth,” seem an appropriate accusation here?

 

Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way defending Facebook or Zuckerberg’s amoral business model & behavior. No, personally I’d love to see Marky Mark along with many others, handcuffed and led away to prison for at least 30 years & not to some plush, federal prison but to prisons like Pelican Bay. And I include Ms. Kaiser, Mr. Nix, etc. in that chain-gang of rotten criminals.

 

Moreover & above all else it’s imperative that when Ms. Kaiser mentioned above that they spent the majority of their money for ads on Facebook because it got the best results, it sounds like they were just paying for innocuous (1. Having no adverse effect; harmless. 2. Not likely to offend or provoke to strong emotion; insipid.)  political ads.

 

Talk about an understatement, this was a whopper! The “ads” that Cambridge Analytica ran on Facebook rarely had a scintilla of truth or factual accuracy in them. Over the course of my lifetime, political ads have gradually sunk to lower & lower standards. Political campaign managers used to advise their candidates to not stoop to “negative ads,” until they became an absolute necessity. Well clearly not so these days. And I believe that if an award was given out to which party aired the vilest political ads, the Republicans would win hands down. Why? Because they are clearly the least ethical of the two parties we’re unfortunately saddled with.

 

For example; they ran an ad claiming that Hillary Clinton ran a child sex ring out of a pizza parlor & that they drank children’s blood. Yeah, I shit you not! This is the sort of trash that is worthy of “The National Enquirer,” and Alex Jones’ conspiracy “news” program; “Info Wars.” Two of Trump’s trusted news sources as contrasted with the “fake news” outlets like The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, etc. And Kaiser’s again seemingly innocent statement; “…because they get the best results,” is bullshit as well.

 

Cambridge went with Facebook because they knew damn well that Facebook had over two billion members world-wide & that if they just targeted a hundred thousand or so of strategic (gullible, less educated) Facebook members, their vile ads would spread like a deadly virus & corrupt or at least throw into chaos & doubt, Clinton’s campaign for the presidency & make Trump look like the voice of reason.

 

Yeah, pretty mindboggling that someone like Trump could be made to look like the voice of reason but this is the power of the so-called “social media,” in this day & age.

 

Kaiser is clearly no dummy & that’s why she was paid a phenomenal salary—by outward appearance of her lavish lifestyle. (she’s worth a million & a half dollars) So, she acknowledged; “Regarding those personality tests, the truth is that we didn’t target all Americans equally, we spent more money targeting those whose minds we thought we could change.”

 

No shit Sherlock! In other words, they targeted the least educated, which wasn’t hard to do when you had everybody’s personal histories & on your page where they ask you to list your favorite books, movies, t.v. shows, etc. and a person can’t remember the title of a single book & lists the latest Hollywood action blockbuster for a movie & “The Walking Dead,” for their favorite television show.

 

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that this person would be a “persuadable” voter they could steer towards the Trump campaign of racism & hatred for everybody not a Duck Dynasty fan. Remember that Kaiser first worked for the Obama campaign & headed the “social media” arms of his campaign for the presidency. And she worked for “human rights” organizations but got tired of not seeing the results of her work (translation; not making any or making very little money). It’s evident in the film that she enjoyed the jet-set lifestyle that working for the corporate cockroaches like the G.O.P. and the Trump campaign gave her a taste of.

 

Kaiser continues; “they’re (the persuadables) are everywhere in the U.S. —Duh? …but the ones that mattered were in the Swing states like; Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, & Florida. They broke the states down into precincts and if you targeted enough of the “persuadable,” the state turned from Blue to Red in key precincts.”

 

Are you beginning to understand the undeniable power & influence that Facebook had in bringing the most despicable human being imaginable to occupy the oval office? And note how Zuckerberg to this day still claims that Facebook is still following its original agenda of “connecting people.” Yeah, Facebook is about as good at connecting people as Trump is on his never-ending Fear & Hate Tour.

 

More specifically, do you see why I titled this essay, “Facebook’s Friendly Fascism?” I purposely used the word “friendly” as a pun & play on Facebook’s charade of helping people make “friends.” By-the-way, the reality behind Facebook is that it helps you to make enemies because its structure/design encourages the negativity in people to be expressed because the negativity or anger, hatred, etc. draws more people in than the positive emotions like love & peace. And the negativity spreads like wildfire, just the sort of atmosphere that Trump thrives in.

 

Consequently, Facebook was the perfect vehicle to spread all the racism & division of the Trump message; immigrants, people of color, liberals, democrats, etc. are the cause of your troubles, they take your jobs, they’re draining our economy because they’re taking advantage of our too generous & too liberal programs like food stamps, welfare, etc. By-the-way, Breitbart, I just learned, is the biggest political advertiser on Facebook.

 

Naturally, what the Trumps of this country will never admit to is that they, the 1%, who own everything, are the true cause of our poverty, poor educational system, pitiful health care, loss of our jobs, etc. etc. etc. And it absolutely blew my mind that the poorest amongst us could actually fall for Trump’s posing as their hero. I won’t go off on a tangent here but that charade was breathtaking & very depressing to say the least.

 

Returning to the reptilian Ms. Kaiser, she goes on to state; “Our creative team developed/designed personalized content to target these voters.” “Creative team?” This phrase almost made me gag because this is somewhat akin to saying that Hitler had a creative team that developed/designed solutions to the Jewish problem.

 

And again, my imaginary reader, I am equating Facebook with Fascism because it exemplifies just how destructive a force it is in not only the major role it played in bringing a wannabe dictator like Trump to the most powerful position in the world, it also exposes the fascist nature of megalithic corporate conglomerates.

In a nutshell, every natural resource in the world & every human being that is not part of the 1% has only one purpose for living i.e. to serve their masters & keep on increasing their masters’ wealth. These corporate cockroaches sincerely believe they deserve half a billion-dollar yachts & the rest of us should be grateful for a Big Mac if we know our place, keep our mouths shut, & work till we drop!

 

Furthermore, Kaiser provides more details in her obvious attempts to curry favor & hopefully escape prosecution for her crimes; “We bombarded them with blogs, articles, websites, ads, etc. until they saw the world the way we wanted them to.”

 

Bear in mind the fact that Cambridge Analytica’s parent company was in the business of developing psychological warfare operations/programs for governments for decades. I’m not sure if they’re still doing so? But in the context of this essay, Cambridge was waging a de facto psychological warfare advertising (propaganda) campaign against the American voting public. Yet this doesn’t seem to bother many Americans or perhaps they just haven’t connected the dots yet?

 

Moreover, my intellectual hero, Noam Chomsky, clued us in a long time ago regarding the Advertising industry as well as the Public Relations industry and informed us that in the early days of Advertising & Public Relations, they were more honest & referred to them as propaganda; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfIwUlY44CM

 

Mull this over for a bit because it’s a critically important point for us all to reflect on. I feel that sometimes I may come across as lecturing or preaching but at the risk of sounding like one of those hated, intellectual elite, I see daily the deterioration of our intellectual standards & critical/analytical thinking skills.

 

In magazines, newspapers, books, radio, television, & movies, editing/proofreading seems to be vanishing and few seem to care? And this intellectual apathy regarding standards of quality or accuracy is clearly reflected in terms of what is available for us to watch on television.

 

It seems the dumber, the more crude, vulgar, backstabbing, etc. you are in television series, the more popular your program becomes & therefore the more money your show brings in. And it’s a race to the bottom, just look at who’s occupying the oval office. Perhaps I should remind people here that I grew up in a poor, single parent home, and am definitely not from some elitist background. I have worked my ass off for my whole life in terms of trying to educate myself to the best of my abilities. So, if you try to dismiss me as just another elitist snob, you’re only showing your ignorance & prejudice against anyone who can read beyond a sixth-grade level.

 

Another way of looking at Cambridge’s “ad campaign,” for Trump’s presidential campaign is the casual manner & tone of Kaiser’s last statement; “…until they saw the world the way we wanted them to.” This is uttered in an almost blasé (unconcerned) tone & attitude. Of course, Mao Zedong’s “Cultural Revolution” in China from 1966 to 1976 killed anywhere from 500,000 to over 2,000,000 Chinese citizens in their “re-education” program, but it occurred to me, what if China’s leaders or any world leaders referred to that horror as casually with; “until they saw the world the way we wanted them to?”

 

America is supposed to stand for freedom, democracy, liberation but we seem to have become so complacent (unbothered) regarding the horrors being committed around the world by bloody tyrants & dictators that a propaganda campaign employed by the Republican party & executed by a company like Cambridge, receives little attention by the media & little concern by our citizens?

It appears to me that we—American citizens—have become numb not only mentally but also ethically/morally. Yet we still love to strut around proclaiming to the world how wonderful & powerful we are as a nation? And the only time we get passionate is when the politicians & their handmaidens, the media, manipulate us into a frenzy regarding an American or small number of Americans has been captured or killed.

 

And when the latest “crisis” is over, we slip right back into our somnambulant (sleepwalking) stupor (a condition of greatly dulled or completely suspended sense or sensibility). America’s hypocrisy regarding our professed principles & values and the reality of the millions of innocents killed around the globe by our bombing and our support of so many bloody dictators i.e. Trump’s heroes & idols, has made a mockery of our hollow rhetoric.

 

Above all, as some historian has pointed out, the way a nation treats the people of other nations, eventually comes home i.e. think of how our soldiers have treated Iraqi civilians, and the people of Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, etc. etc. etc. And think of the way American mercenaries like Blackwater, assaulted the people of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina or the militarization of our police forces around the country. Before I move on from this topic, think about this warning from Pastor Niemoller in Nazi Germany as the brown shirts (Trump’s idea of fine people; see his speech re: the violent protest in Charlottesville):

 

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

 

Finally, I ask you, where are all those “good Christians,” who believe in Christ? Again, just more flagrant hypocrites who choose when to observe & when to ignore Christ’s “Sermon on the Mount.” I stopped calling myself a Christian, decades ago and am probably a borderline atheist or agnostic but I know in my heart that I am far more of a Christian than the majority of those who do consider themselves Christians.

 

Admittedly, I may have veered slightly off topic a bit but not really. One of our gravest problems as citizens of the United States is our moral laxity (careless or negligent). And please don’t lump me together with those phony or faux “Christians,” when I point out these glaring contradictions.

 

Okay, let’s get back to Cambridge Analytica but first I just want to insert; I bet Cambridge University wishes that this company hadn’t used its name because Cambridge University is one of the oldest & most revered universities in the world.

 

Moreover, speaking of this ancient hollowed university, I am sadly reminded that in the overall analysis of higher education today, there is very little pretense anymore of pursuing a university education because it is the mark of a well-rounded or cultured person. No, it’s pretty blatant now that young people pursue a college degree with one aim in mind i.e. a high-paying career.

And I can anticipate your response, yeah, culture & all those lofty ideals are all fine & dandy but money is more important than all that stuff. Well perhaps I can show you the utility of pursuing the humanities & yeah, I know that public education today especially at the secondary level (middle & high school) has been forced to teach only the material that will be on the standardized tests.

 

But here’s how we can beat them at their own game! First of all, I can show you a simple mnemonic strategy/technique that will blow your mind because it makes memorizing data, facts, information so much easier & that will take a great weight off your mind when taking those pointless standardized tests.

 

Consequently, your mind & your spirit will be freed-up to pursue the truly valuable knowledge that will help you in the big picture of what our lives can be. It dawned on me somewhere in my twenties that what we should study is what the rich study. Simplistic? No, not if you reflect on it for a bit.

 

Let’s start at the top because if you’re going to be the best at whatever profession you wish to excel in, you must set your sights on what skills the best in your field possess. And in academia, the most prestigious scholarship you can win is a Rhodes Scholarship. I actually visited Oxford University on one of my trips to Europe because I had long been curious as to exactly what Rhodes Scholars studied & the simplicity of their course of study was refreshing.

 

First of all, you must’ve already earned a B.A. and must have excelled in not only your academic subject but also in athletics & as a leader. And the core of your studies as a Rhodes Scholar boils down to your meeting with a professor—they call them dons—once a week, I believe? They give you reading assignments in the classics & a writing project on what you read then you meet & the don quizzes you to gauge the depth of your understanding of the material you read & guides your efforts.

 

For over 40 years, I’ve been trying to get this simple but powerful point through to family & friends but I’m usually dismissed as being out there in left field or something. So, answer me this; If studying the classics in literature, history, philosophy, political science, etc. is such a waste of time, why do the elite, the 1%, study these subjects?

 

I’ll tell you why, it’s because pursuing academic excellence develops an excellence of mind i.e. superior critical & analytical thinking skills. I can personally attest to the truth of this. When I first started taking courses at a local community college, I had to take the English Placement Test. Well, I scored so low that they told me that I’d have to take remedial English which consisted of setting at a desk with a cassette player & headphones on as I listened to; “See Dick & Jane, see Spot,” etc. I put up with that bullshit for about a week and dropped-out.

 

I then started taking business courses not because I was interested in becoming a businessman but because I thought they might be useful at some point in my future. I dropped-out of many courses over the next several years, sometimes half-way or even three-quarters of the way through. I was bored to tears & I worked at a wide variety of what I called Mickey Mouse jobs i.e. pumping gas, flipping burgers, etc.

 

I was a young man in search of adventure so I started going to Europe, sometimes on a one-way ticket with a couple hundred bucks in my pocket. And I met some very intelligent people on my travels & picking their brains for good authors to read, I fell in love with some of the greatest writers i.e. Hemmingway, Dostoyevsky, Hesse, Steinbeck, etc.

It had been five years since I’d taken that first English Placement Test but I decided to give it another shot because I wanted to take some courses in writing & literature but was told again that I must take this damn test. And to my utter surprise, this time I scored in the top 10% on the test so now I could take any courses in the English dept. that I wanted to. And lo & behold, I ended-up earning a B.A. in English lit. How’s that for going from bone-head English (that remedial class with the cassette player) to graduating in English.

 

I realized some time later that the only logical explanation for this phenomenon had to be the fact that by reading great writers, your vocabulary, comprehension, & writing abilities can’t help but improve significantly.

 

I’ve tried many times over the years to explain or defend this course of study & here’s an analogy I’ve often used; let’s say that you’re going to be in a foot-race against the fastest runner in your school. Clearly, you’re going to have to give every last ounce of energy, effort, spirit or whatever you want to call it, if you truly want a shot at winning that race.

 

The same goes for intellectual excellence i.e. you must pit your brain against the best minds that have ever lived. Of course, it’s very unlikely that you’ll surpass them but by engaging with that level of thinking, you’re going to push your mind to the greatest level it is capable of attaining & this will set you head & shoulders above most of your competition in the modern marketplace of work.

 

Furthermore, here are some other arguments for striving to develop your intellect that I copied from watching a short, You Tube video I stumbled across a few weeks ago; “Why You Should Read Books; 15 Benefits:”

 

Acquire knowledge

Improve memory

Strengthen critical & analytical skills

Advance your career

Improve writing skills

Reduce stress & anxiety

Improve focus & concentration

Boost inspiration & motivation

Learn at your own pace

Stimulate imagination

Improve conversation skills

Become more empathetic

Sleep better

Source of companionship

Increase your lifespan

 

Okay, you’re probably wondering what this side-trip of mine has to do with the whole Cambridge Analytica scandal and Facebook? In a nutshell, if we had stronger critical & analytical thinking skills, we wouldn’t be so easily suckered by the bogus types of posts, ads, propaganda that inundates us on “social media” platforms like Facebook. By-the-way, here’s a valuable tip for those of you who are serious about developing that other 90% or more of your brain that is lying dormant, buy a copy of “Problem Solving & Comprehension” by Whimbey & Lochhead, $11 on Amazon.

 

By-the-way, a Jesuit scholar (some of the best scholars in the world) suggested this book to me when I went to the remedial learning lab in the library at Cal State University at Long Beach after doing horribly on a test in a history course. Find a friend or relative or two who’d like to stretch their minds as well & work the problems in this book together. I’m sure you’ll be amazed & very pleased at what you will accomplish.

Bottom-line, our public-school system has been neglected & undermined for decades so we must take our education into our own hands. And if you care about not only your own welfare but the well-being & the future of your loved ones, you now know some concrete steps that you can take to empower yourself.

 

“Social media,” is weakening us mentally & helping the powers that be to enslave us. The clock of history is gradually being turned back to the days of feudalism. Bullshit? Look at what they’re doing to the hard-won progress of the Women’s Movement. Those “Christian” fundamentalists are salivating at the growing prospect of overturning Roe vs. Wade so women will have to go back to back-alley butchers for abortions. Ignore what’s going on around us at your own peril.

 

Perhaps you don’t remember or maybe you’ve simply never learned about the Dark Ages & what feudal life was like? In short, the nobility i.e. lords, kings, priests, etc. got the best of the crops that their serfs & the peasants who worked the fields produced and peasants’ families usually went hungry & begged for scraps from the lords’ tables gorging themselves at their banquets. Look around at the wealth of Jeff Bezos & the Walmart family whose wealth equals half of the American public.

 

American workers’ wages have basically been stagnant for the past 40 years & most of us are forced to work two or three jobs desperately trying to keep our heads above water. So, if none of this bothers you, just keep on amusing yourself to death by watching the crap served up on T.V. and keep attending those Trump rallies where he makes you feel good by scapegoating those even worse off than you i.e. the Mexicans & other Latinos from Central America fleeing the drug lords, drought, & the in your face corruption of their governments—who followed our own government’s model.

 

My intention when I started this essay was to thoroughly go through the entire documentary & break it down step-by-step but I know that only perhaps one out of a thousand or maybe even ten thousand who might stumble across this essay, would take the time to read. We’ve become a people with the attention span of a gold fish & we’re obsessed with pictures i.e. selfies & video and I’m growing very weary of expending so much energy in trying to communicate with the intellectually lazy. And Trump is merely a symptom of this sad state of our society. I can’t and I choose not to waste my spirit & my intellect on those who don’t give a shit. So, more power to you but I feel no sympathy for those who have the ability to improve their lot in life but prefer to sit on the couch & watch “The Walking Dead.”

 

Addendum

 

I was in a bar on my birthday back in 2018 and got into a lively discussion with a few guys around me, we got to the subject of Facebook. This guy tried to tell me that he loved it because it was free. I told him, oh yeah, then why does Zuckerberg make billions from it?

I didn’t feel it was worth trying to explain to this guy who was obviously one of the unthinking masses how Facebook sells our data to corporations who then target us with their ads. In a nutshell, we are being stalked by corporate America & the federal government. We are their prey and we are a helluva lot less free than we imagine. And what people can’t see, they basically don’t care about i.e. I used to work in industrial x-ray & welders would walk through the areas we were x-raying in—and which we had roped-off with warning signs—and when we’d confront them they’d say, I don’t care, I’ve already had my children. What we don’t see is Zuckerberg’s ego. Facebook just had to pay a $5 billion dollar fine but it was less than 1% of Facebook’s worth & the next day, their stock went up by $6 billion. And Marky-Mark feels so smug that he refused requests from both Canada & the U.K. to appear before their committees scrutinizing disinformation & online election influence campaigns.

I’d say that Zuckerberg, like the countless other corporate cockroaches, clearly feel that they are above the law because they are never held accountable for their countless criminal acts & this basically makes them fascists. And the most important thing to bear in mind is that these oligarchs like Zuckerberg, strut the world stage like they’re the untouchables just as Al Capone thought he was. Note that Trump’s best buddy, Putin and his circle of comrades are often referred to as oligarchs as well but that’s just a polite cover for what they really are, the Russian mafia!

 

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/facebook-uk-canada-parliaments-invite-mark-zuckerberg-to-first-ever-com 

 

I’ll boil-down a key lesson I have learned from the 40 years or better that I have been studying politics in America. Whenever you hear someone make the claim that our government is the problem, the enemy, etc. Bear in mind that this is the result of the “con”-servatives propaganda campaign that they began as soon as FDR enacted the New Deal. And what they really want is for us to get rid of all regulations that prevent them from making even greater profits i.e. environmental regulations, IRS regulations, labor regulations, etc. etc. etc. But they definitely don’t want to get rid of all the government subsidies they get. The oil industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the high tech industries, etc. all depend on & receive billions of dollars in subsidies from us the taxpayers. Take the Internet for example. We subsidized its invention mostly through tax dollars given to the Pentagon but as soon as an invention proves successful, the government gives it to private corporations who receive all the profits but we don’t get a share of those profits or even a discount on the invention or product. Listen to what the beloved FDR had to say about our rights as Americans, as human beings & tell me again how corporate America is so wonderful & Trump is your hero.

The Early Warning Signs of Fascism

 

  • Powerful and continuing nationalism
  • Disdain for human rights
  • Identification of enemies as a unifying cause
  • Supremacy of the military
  • Rampant sexism
  • Controlled mass media
  • Obsession with national security
  • Religion and government intertwined
  • Corporate power protected
  • Labor [sic] power suppressed
  • Disdain for intellectuals & the arts
  • Obsession with crime & punishment
  • Rampant cronyism & corruption
  • Fraudulent elections

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fake News President

 

 

The ultimate irony is that this phony braggart who keeps accusing the press of being fake, wouldn’t have become president were it not for the tsunami of fake news posts on Facebook. And depressingly, almost half of all Americans get their news from Facebook. This conspiratorial assault on the hearts & minds of the American electorate was designed & implemented by Cambridge Analytica’s then vice-president, Steve Bannon.

And the great Fear & Hate Monger spreading it throughout Europe now

 

Bannon just happened to be the CEO of Trump’s presidential campaign & once Trump became the occupant of the oval office, he was the White House’s chief strategist for seven months until he criticized the boy-king in a book he’d written.

funny how he doesn’t tell it like it is when he loses?

 

Moreover, another key factor in how Trump stole the presidency was the fact that the “public enemy” i.e. the mainstream media, gave Donny over 23 times the media attention that Sanders got. Why? Because Trump would say things so outrageous that it made for better television ratings. And obviously the better the ratings, the more money the networks bring in. Obviously, the fake news circus maximus waged by team Trump has been & continues to be the key to his success.

“Freedom of the Press,
if it means anything at all,
means the freedom
to criticize and oppose”
― George Orwell

 

Of course, the most egregious example of fake news is FOX “news.” I have been putting the news in that reference in parenthesis for well over the past decade because I refuse to refer to them as a legitimate news organization. And the fact that the rest of the mainstream media in this country have gone along with this farce for the 20 years that FOX has been in business, reveals how little integrity they have as well.

You can be sure of one thing i.e. this isn’t the first time he’s been charged with fraud

 

Most notably during the George W. Bush reign of error & terror, the White House issued its daily talking points & FOX “news,” dutifully echoed it. Whenever I get into a brief, political discussion with someone, I can tell within a couple of minutes if they’re a FOX “news” devotee because they simply spew out the same tired propaganda they just watched on FOX.

Yeah I bet all the families of our soldiers who died in Iraq thought this was real funny

 

However, in the spirit of full disclosure, let’s review briefly that minor incident we call the Iraq War. Of course, FOX “news” beat the drums for invasion louder than any “news” network but The New York Times, supposedly the “paper of record” i.e. the paper that sets the standard for all the rest of the major newspapers in America, also beat the war-drums. Judith Miller was their star reporter covering the lead-up to the war & she basically just served as a stenographer to Ahmad Chalabi. A few weeks after Miller’s complete lack of journalistic ethics, she was forced to leave the New York Times staff.

the kind of reporter that Trump loves

This was a guy that would’ve been a perfect business partner for Trump. He’d amassed a fortune of over $100,000,000 through bank fraud in Jordan, being an Iraqi businessman in the oil industry, etc. But his primary value was as a source for the Bush administration’s claim of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. So much for the Times’ reputation of research & fact-checking. Oh yeah, Chalabi hoped that his dishonesty & dirty deals with the Bush administration would be rewarded by his being made president of Iraq after the U.S. leveled the country.

he won’t release his taxes because they’ll prove he’s a tax cheat & not a billionaire!

 

What the above example reveals is that yes, to some extent, all media is fake but to conclude that Trump is therefore justified in his ad nauseam attacks on the media as the public enemy is reducto ad absurdum (argument to absurdity). And I often hear people claim that MSNBC is equal to FOX “news” in terms of their biases which is ridiculous as well.

If you give a shit about how the media really works, this man is the greatest intellectual alive!

 

Time to return to the Master of Fraud, Trump. Everything about this blowhard (an arrogantly & pompously boastful or opinionated person; braggart, windbag) is fake from his glued-down toupee to his “bone-spurs.” We witness daily how mind-bogglingly stupid & incompetent he is yet nearly half of America love his chest-beating & his racist hatred of all who aren’t from “his base.”

not that I have any love for Romney but here he’s speaking the truth

 

This “teller like it is,” is so insecure that he employs a platoon of lawyers 24/7, 365 days a year who protect him from lawsuits filed against him & who threaten lawsuits against anyone who dares to besmirch his “good name” and his entire business career has been one continuous stream of lawsuits as either defendant or plaintiff.

Trump’s mentor & mafia lawyer on the right, Joseph McCarthy’s hatchet-man, Roy Cohn

What his Jonestown cult members refuse to acknowledge is Trump’s paranoid fear of being exposed for the epitome (a perfect example of a class or type) of a fraud. There’s a good reason why lawyers, politicians, & used-car salesmen are on the lowest rung of America’s social ladder & Trump is the lowest of the low when you take the time to check out his past. Yet his Walking Dead cheerleaders will never betray him because he gives them their daily fix of dopamine every time he lashes out at immigrants, Mexicans, Muslims, Democrats, liberals, etc. etc. etc.

Is this what it’s going to take before Trump fans wake-up? Another Jonestown?

 

Furthermore, what’s truly amazing is that those who support this charlatan are those whose mantra is “All you need is common sense.” I know these kinds of people. I used to argue with them all the time in my mom’s house in my 20s when we’d be partying & they’d blindly defend Ronald Reagan. So, where is the “common sense” of the typical Trump fan?

Is America really so dumb as to fall for this fake???

 

How can a person who owns a casino, go bankrupt & not just once but four times even when given special zoning permission that other casino owners in Atlantic City weren’t given? Seems rather obvious to me that he’s a colossal failure as a businessman. And if he’s such a genius as he loves to boast ad nauseam, why has he threatened lawsuits against any of the schools he’s attended from elementary school to college if they dare to reveal his grades? Duh! He’s always been the fuckin’ moron we see before our eyes & only the willfully blind fail to see it.

The state of higher education in America; hundreds of fraudulent, on-line “universities” & massive student debt

 

And speaking of blind, America as evidenced by the millions who believe in Trump are clearly also members of the deaf, dumb, & blind and clearly represent a threat to not only our fragile democracy but often a physical threat to those who dare to speak out.

 

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane for those of you who may not remember the beginning of the “reality T.V. phenomenon.” The first & the only “Reality T.V. show” I ever watched as far as I can remember, was “Survivor.” I watched perhaps two or three episodes of it with my dear, departed wife and I commented to her, think about it, what is this series telling us? It’s telling us to win at any cost i.e. lie, cheat, steal, backstab, etc., you know, the seven cardinal virtues that all Christians aspire to. (No, I’m being facetious here but I did point out the negative lessons the show was promoting)

This is the kind of leader Trump admires i.e. cruel & fascist

 

Don’t get me wrong, but what I’m about to say isn’t because I consider myself holier than thou but rather due to the fact that I’ve been an outsider or a loner all my life. My “friends” in L.A. as I was progressing through my 20s, often mocked or ridiculed me because they weren’t readers like I am and therefore a lot of what I tried to tell them sounded preposterous.

the IRS goes after far more ordinary Americans than the 1% tax cheaters who make billions

 

Well I believe it’s been close to 20 years now & we now have clear evidence of the harm that our infatuation with “reality t.v.” has wrought on our society & culture. I have tried for years to point out to people the Alice in Wonderland absurdity of watching a fake “medium” (technology used to communicate) to supposedly get a view of our reality. I’d say things like, Hey, I have an idea, how about instead of watching T.V. to get a view of “reality,” you go out and live real life, you know, what’s happening right outside your door?

Authoritarians appeal to people when they are desperate & worried about their economic future

 

Of course, my concerns were dismissed and mocked as usual but it gives me no pleasure to point that out now, my worries have clearly been proven correct. Donald J. Trump, the phony star of a phony t.v. series built on a formula perfect for such a vile & corrupt person as Donny, with the critical help of this series, The Apprentice, has become the president of the most powerful nation on earth & is clearly a serious threat to our national security & our economic well-being.

like some of the Roman Emperors, Trump is a megalomaniac & poses a threat to the planet!

 

I also heartily recommend that you check out the documentary series on Netflix called “Dirty Money,” and the episode titled; “Confidence Man,” which of course is about Trump. Again, those of you who believe you have “common sense,” might ponder why it is that Donnie demanded that every time that his name was mentioned on The Apprentice, they had to add; “the billionaire?” If he’s so confident of his wealth, why does he need to keep on saying he’s very, very rich or fantastically rich, etc. etc. etc. so often that it makes me feel like puking? Or reflect on this; We had something like 585 billionaires in America as of 2018 but we don’t hear them bragging to the world daily of their wealth, why do you think that is?

I don’t know about you but I have always detested braggarts and when I’m around one, I usually make a quick escape. I prefer to be around people who are humble and if they are talented in some areas, I usually discover their talents on my own. I feel that this is a good point at which to lay-out just how significant Steve Bannon & Cambridge Analytica’s role was in dumping this human trash-can, Trump on us. I am going to give you a thumbnail overview of the subject & if you’d care to look a bit deeper, I suggest you check out the fantastic documentary also available on Netflix called “The Great Hack.”

In a nutshell, Cambridge Analytica was a branch of a larger corporation that had been doing psychological operations work or contracts with governments, corporations, intelligence agencies, etc. for decades i.e. disrupting, manipulating, etc. elections with fake news stories or propaganda. And when Zuckerberg sold them the data of over 90 million of American Facebook users, supposedly unaware of the harm it could cause, Cambridge Analytica went to work.

the facts behind the fraud & no, not “alternative facts”

 

Bannon is like an evil wizard who immediately realized just what a powerful weapon this data could be & probably started salivating from the beginning. And one of their primary tools for gaining insights into American voters’ personalities, character, etc. was the use of the seemingly simple personality tests they posted on Facebook. And I too fell for these tests several times. Cambridge boasted in their sales campaigns that they had over 5,000 data points on every American user of Facebook.

 

And all this data they had collected illegally & immorally on us, made it easy for them to target those whom they called “persuadable.” These were the Facebook users that they targeted with their fake news stories i.e. propaganda portraying Hillary Clinton as the head of a child sex ring that drank children’s blood & assorted other National Enquirer type “news stories.” Remember the fact that nearly half of America’s citizens who are on Facebook, get their news from this so-called, “social media platform.”

Get the picture? Facebook, the most powerful social media platform in the world with over two billion users, along with FOX “news,” Alex Jones’ “Info Wars” website, the Conspiracy Channel in other words i.e. the Sandy Hook massacre of 20 children from six to seven years old along with six adult staff at this elementary school was called a hoax by Alex Jones.

 

“…. claims that the massacre was “a giant hoax” and “that the whole thing was fake” — staged by the federal government, which hired professional actors for the purposes of undermining Second Amendment rights.”  https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/04/17/603223968/sandy-hook-parents-sue-conspiracy-theorist-al

 

And America’s infamous “Anti-intellectualism” (see the classic by Richard Hofstadter) have combined in a perverse sort of perfect storm to bring us one of the most despicable creatures to ever walk upright, Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan.

“Trump has repeatedly cited or pushed claims that were traced back to infowars.com” Moreover, Jones two areas of “expertise” are conspiracy theories and fake news. What an amazing coincidence? If, unlike Trump, you are capable of compassion or empathy, try to imagine what the parents of those children who were murdered must’ve felt like with this evil propagandist, Alex Jones, calling this horrific nightmare a grand conspiracy.

 

A few of the parents of the murdered children filed a law suit against Jones for his horrible behavior in pushing this conspiracy theory for I’m not sure how long but I do know that Jones finally lost in court. And now he claims that “a form of psychosis caused him to believe that the Sandy Hook massacre was staged.” Yeah, right! And this is the kind of guy that our fake news president cites & promotes conspiracy theories from? This shows just how gullible millions of Americans are & how quick they are to believe the most absurd claims of nut-jobs.

 

In conclusion, I am going to pull back the curtain on Trump’s greatest fraud which is his claim to fame i.e. that he’s a self-made billionaire. But before I do so, it’s appropriate to remind you, my imaginary reader, of a fantastic statement by the liar-in-chief;

 

“What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.”

This is almost a little too on-the-nose Orwellian. In 1984, George Orwell described the totalitarian government’s ultimate demand of its subjects:

The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.  https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a22547037/donald-trump-orwellian-truth-reality-eyes-ears/

This admonition is clearly from the mind of a megalomaniac and any rational person capable of even a semblance of critical & analytical thinking would be frightened but not Trump’s Walking Dead army. In other words, Trump is telling his pro-Nazi & neo-fascist fan club to only believe whatever he says. Trump is clearly a textbook example of a demagogue & let me save you the effort to go to your dictionary, if you were so inclined?

 

demagogue /ˈdɛməɡɒɡ/ (from Greek δημαγωγός, a popular leader, a leader of a mob, from δῆμος, people, populace, the commons + ἀγωγός leading, leader)[1] or rabble-rouser[2][3] is a leader who gains popularity in a democracy by exploiting prejudice and ignorance to arouse the common people against elites, whipping up the passions of the crowd and shutting down reasoned deliberation.[1][4] Demagogues overturn established norms of political conduct, or promise or threaten to do so.[5]

 

Of course, Trump’s Conspiracy of Ignorance campaign is two-pronged i.e. pretending to be going after the elites of which he is a member at least financially-speaking. By-the-way, Trump tried his best to gain acceptance into New York’s intellectual & cultural elite for many years in his 20s but they laughed at him & rejected him time & time again. So, I believe a lot of his animus towards this pseudo elite, accounts for a lot of his bitterness nowadays? And the second prong of Trump’s war against America is his base which adore him & feed his super-ego.

 

Okay, now for the piece de resistance (French for; an outstanding item or event: showpiece), upon which Trump has built the edifice of his empire, his wealth. By-the-way, my guess is that this expose (to make known: bring to light) done by a team of investigative reporters from The New York Times is probably the main reason he detests this newspaper above all the rest?

 

Back in 2005, David Cay Johnston, revealed three pages of one of Trump’s tax returns that he had gotten his hands on. He has closely observed Trump’s career for over 28 years & has challenged Trump on many occasions to sue him but Trump has never taken him up on his invitation. The three pages caught the attention of this small team of journalists at the Times & they began a 14-month investigation of Donnie Darko.

And here is what they discovered thanks in large part to getting their hands-on Donnie’s daddy’s Will. Moreover, because Donnie’s sister, who was a federal judge, had to file a full financial disclosure each year that she was a judge & dutifully listed the details of every trust, business organization, etc. from which she received money, they were able to zero in on Donnie’s true sources of his wealth. Each of Donnie’s siblings received the same amount in Fred Trump’s Will but from the age of three when Donald Duck was receiving $250,000 a year & throughout his life, Daddy Warbucks never stopped funneling millions of dollars every year to the spoiled & intellectually-challenged Donald Duck.

 

In brief, Donnie the Despicable has never been a true entrepreneur because Daddy had to co-sign for every loan he used to get in his early years until the banks had their fill of his defaults on his loans. In 2005, his tax return showed that he had earned $150,000,000 but the investigative team discovered that this was a one-shot thing & it was because he had inherited it from daddy. Again, you can do a brief check to see just how many times his “brilliant” business mind has failed. And in the early 1990s, he was over $3 billion in debt with three of his Atlantic City casinos bankrupt. But then came his saving grace i.e. The Apprentice.  https://people.com/politics/apprentice-creators-donald-trump-scam/

 

Obviously, Trump’s entire life has been a gargantuan fraud and he has focused on expanding the Trump name & its façade of his being a self-made billionaire for decades. This is why he is so quick to sue anyone who dares to defame his “good name” i.e. his name plastered on buildings around the world make the unthinking believe he actually owns all those buildings when in fact, he’s simply the front-man, like the doorman standing outside a fancy hotel proclaiming; “Come on in to the greatest hotel in the world!”

 

It’s the sheer audacity of his hypocrisy (phrase used by Scott Horton) that has enabled him to survive along with his inheritance that has kept his head above water financially, not to mention his countless criminal acts.

 

And if you watch the video about how he got his fortune from daddy whom he has always claimed only gave him a “small loan of one million & which he had to pay interest on,” they also reveal how Donald & his siblings ripped daddy off for hundreds of millions so they wouldn’t have to pay 55% in taxes on their inheritance. Yep! Like I’ve showed in several instances, this racist, hate-monger, & national embarrassment has been nothing but a fake & a fraud all his life and yet he struts the world stage as if he were a present-day Mussolini and expects us to all grovel at his feet in awe of his magnificence. Well, here are my parting words for all of you who will persist in this grand delusion, but first I thought I might lighten things up briefly because I forewarn you, my last thoughts on this subject are very dark.

 

 

The Emperor Wears No Clothes
P.T. Barnum said, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” and boy was he right

 

And here is Steve Bannon, the conspiracy theorist who is very sly and intelligent & this makes him a very dangerous person indeed because he is out to destroy every government that is pro-democracy and he wants to create a New World Order of Fascism!

And now back to the real “reality” of our lives in this dark time, this era of Trump and the darkness that has spread over the land.

 

You grin and cheer for this fake because like a lynch-mob, he can whip you up into a frenzy so easily. He helps you vent your anger that comes from your fears about how you’re going to pay your bills & your family’s future but this is the demagogue’s oldest trick in the book i.e. blame others, immigrants, Muslims, democrats, liberals, etc. etc. etc. when you should be ashamed of yourselves for not seeing that Trump isn’t your champion, he’s the enemy.

 

He represents the bankers who illegally foreclosed on your home and evicted you. He’s the hedge fund manager who wiped-out your pension fund. He’s one of the corporate crooks who pay lawyers & politicians to write laws that allow all the fraud & theft.

 

The government by and large works for the corporate cockroaches just like every one of us who works for thieves like Walmart, Amazon, etc. Trump, like his other swamp creature friends like Jeffrey Epstein for example, have gotten rich by fucking us all & using the government and the “law” to do so legally. But this doesn’t mean that we should therefore tear down the government completely because our government provides hundreds of positive functions & services as well.

 

You see, ever since FDR passed the New Deal, the Republicans have vowed & waged a non-stop propaganda campaign and war on every aspect of our government that does some good for we, the people. The G.O.P. has only one agenda and that is the unfettered pursuit of profit & power over the rest of us. So, take all their assaults on the government for what they truly represent i.e. an assault on us which is crystal clear as evidenced by the ever-expanding inequality financially speaking.

 

What Trump excels at is distracting us from what the 1% are doing behind the scenes i.e. Paul Ryan & Mitch McConnel being the key architects of the grand theft of our federal treasury as well as enablers of it. Trump’s actions & rhetoric has delivered a perhaps fatal blow to what we used to believe America stood for. And as Noam Chomsky has pointed out, the rest of the world now fears America more than any other nation or supposed terrorist threat.

 

Trump’s reign of ignorance & terror is shameless & unbridled and dishonors all those who have died in defense of America. I am truly saddened that so many of you just disregard his behavior & dismiss it as Donnie just being “real.”

Is Trump’s vision for America what she lost her love for?

 

Trump is causing physical, mental, & emotional harm to millions of Americans and you cheer him on? Well when the flaps of the giant circus tent that Trump is the ringmaster of go down, you won’t be grinning because you’ll be the present-day Tom Joad family (John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath”).

 

I’m not a religious person but if there is a God and a heaven, when you stand before St. Peter & those pearly gates, he’s going to tell you to Go to Hell for your cruel indifference & inhumanity towards your fellow human beings. You show a total lack of compassion or empathy for all the poor souls, men, women, & children locked up in cages like animals at our border. And you have clearly forgotten entirely what your savior, Jesus, boiled it down to in his Sermon on the Mount.

 

These dehumanized and discarded people bleed red just like you & I when cut. And they put their pants on one leg at a time like your or me. They simply want to live and to enable their children to grow up healthy and not live in a constant state of fear. The drug cartels prey on them like vultures and if their teenage children refuse to join the drug gangs, they are threatened with the death of their entire family. They are fleeing the droughts caused mainly by the pollution of their Northern neighbor and other so-called “technologically-advanced nations.” And they are fleeing the absolute corruption of their government & their corporate sector.

 

America is a leader in corporate corruption but we’re more discrete about our abuses & we have a very effective propaganda system in place to disguise the ugly history of our corporate cockroaches:

 

“I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”
― Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America’s Most Decorated Soldier 

These drug cartels have become obscenely wealthy because of our absolutely asinine & insane War on Drugs and like Trump, they have become so rich because their drugs help people to escape at least temporarily from the nightmares of their daily lives. And the U.S. is the world’s largest market for their drugs because so many Americans hate their lives & your idol is the biggest drug dealer of them all because he pushes the most seductive drug of all i.e. fear & hate!

Oops?

 

 

—Rob DeLoss, Gold Beach, Oregon October 12, 2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trump the Terrible!

the petulant little boy upset that he’s not the center of attention

 

 

Invariably when I meet someone new and the subject of Trump comes up, the first words out of their mouths are; I like Trump because he tells it like it is. And my spirit sinks every time I hear this moronic mantra come out of a person’s mouth. Can a third of the American public really be this stupid?

And in Trump-land, being stupid is worn as a badge of honor

 

Yeah, I’m calling people stupid because they have clearly closed their minds & their hearts to all the greed and cruelty of Trump’s behavior. In my twenties, I lived in Orange County, then the most conservative county in the U.S., Reagan country. And when I’d visit my mom, her friends & her would laugh at my criticisms of Reagan & repeat ad nauseam; “All you need is common sense.”

 

Well can someone please explain to me where that much touted “common sense” is hiding please? By its very definition, it’s supposed to be “common” (occurring or appearing frequently). I submit that this phrase or maxim is just another myth like the one of “rugged individualism,” or “self-reliance.”

 

The average American citizen has been deluged with approximately 6,580 hours of advertising by the time they graduate from high school & they read at the sixth or seventh grade level. Moreover, this ties in with another cherished mantra by many of our fellow citizens i.e. there is a “liberal bias” in the mainstream news. And once again we see that good old common sense has failed us.

The “Liberal Media” Wake up people!

 

Ask yourself why the 1% who own the corporate media would allow a truly liberal bias to dominate their broadcasting networks? Liberals by definition are harsh critics of that infamous 1% who keep getting wealthier while the rest of us keep getting poorer. So, if the liberals were truly in control of the media, their criticisms would undermine the very power structure of their organizations & the owners would soon go out of business.

 

Furthermore, this highlights perhaps the central absurdity of Trump’s supposed fighting for the working class & the middle class of America i.e. the rich, especially the super-rich of which Donald is supposedly a member but of course we’ll never know because he refuses to release his tax returns, rarely become wealthy because they’re simple, honest, hard-working people. But again, the Trump cult prefer to ignore the reality in front of their faces i.e. Trump has spent his adult life in court & has a platoon of lawyers because he threatens & bullies anyone who dares to stand up to him when he’s ripped them off. And he has thousands of lawsuits filed against him every year for a plethora of civil & criminal actions on his part.

 

So how do we explain this apparent willful ignorance on the part of the Trump zombies staggering helplessly toward their destruction? I believe that once again, television plays a significant part in this phenomenon. I know that I’m stating the obvious to those who pay attention to the true reality, not the T.V. “reality,” but those people are the exception to the rule.

 

If you’ve made it this far in reading my essay, congratulations because many people would be dismissing me as one of those East coast elitists at this point. But if you knew my background, you’d really get a chuckle out of this. My mom raised the four of us as a single parent. She worked as a telephone operator & waitress mostly. I walked to school all the way through my public schooling & got 40 cents a day for lunch when I was in high school.

 

And when I was in the sixth grade, I was told that I was reading at the 11th grade, sixth month level. It took me 14 years to earn my B.A. in English literature but the overwhelming majority of what I’ve learned has come through my own reading. So yeah, it cracks me up when people attempt to dismiss me as an elitist, out of touch with the common man’s reality.

 

Okay, back to the “boob-tube.” I remember when “reality T.V.” first raised its stupid head i.e. the series “Survivor” I believe was the first successful show. I could be wrong because I only watched one episode & was turned-off. I asked my wife, what does this teach people, or our children? It teaches them to do anything to “survive” i.e. lie, cheat, steal, backstab or do whatever it takes to win. Of course, this show was perfect for creatures from the black lagoon like Trump because this has been his business “work ethic” or model from day one after daddy gave him $400,000,000 & which he has consistently lied about & claims that daddy war bucks only gave him a million dollars which he soon paid back.

many “Christians” thought Mussolini & Hitler were great leaders too

 

Trump is a living, walking example of the Seven Deadly Sins and the evangelicals or “Christian” fundamentalists who support him show what hypocritical hyenas they truly are for ignoring his “shortcomings.” It also amazes me that the Trump lobotomized simply choose to ignore all his business failures. I think a key factor here is the fact that because Trump’s name is plastered on buildings all over the world, his disciples either don’t know or choose to ignore the fact that what Donny-boy sells more than anything else is his name brand. Most of his “business investments” are the leasing of his name i.e. allowing corporations to put Trump’s name on their properties because it supposedly draws in more customers. But again, we’ll never know the truth because the girly-man with the small hands hides his true financial standing from us.

American ignorance on proud display, “Reality,” for the intellectually impaired.

 

Continuing on, Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan has been truly successful at selling fear & hate. And this is probably the crux of the matter when it comes to why he’s so popular with a third of the voting electorate i.e. he’s given them permission to voice their anger & hate. Tragically for America & the rest of the world by extension, this has given rise to a sort of populist fascism. And Donnie loves his fellow tyrants & dictators and proudly proclaims his love of totalitarian leaders to the world.

Trump’s heroes but Putin is his idol

 

And every time I hear such profanity come out of his pie-hole, I wonder what happened to the principles & values we supposedly once stood for i.e. freedom, democracy, equality, etc.? What have all our soldiers fought & died for? How in the Hell could Trump worshipers not see the glaring contradictions between what Trump does & says and the ideals that the U.S. is supposed to represent?

Is America under the greedy moron Trump what they’ve sacrificed their lives for?

 

It dawned on me the other day as I was driving back from L.A., that Trump stooges seem to wear their ignorance proudly as if it were a badge of honor? They may as well put a bumper sticker on their cars proclaiming; I’m stupid & proud of it!

 

And speaking of stupid, this is one of the reasons the pseudo-Christians support Trump, because he put Betsy DeVos, a rich “Christian,” who is out to destroy public education, in as the Secretary of Education. I wrote a book on the subject of the “Christian” fundamentalists war against Humanism & it’s truly frightening the more you delve into the subject. In brief, these faux “Christians,” want an American Taliban of “Christians,” who rule over the rest of us every bit as absolutely as the Taliban in Afghanistan want to dominate their population.

 

Resuming with our commander in chief of stupid, Trump, it absolutely bewilders me how even the most ardent of Donnie’s toadies aren’t bothered by his daily demonstrations of his monumental ignorance? And this guy is our leader? God help us if a serious threat arises because he couldn’t find his way around the block with a map. He can barely complete a single sentence with any resemblance to coherence or logic. He repeats the same half dozen adjectives like; great, wonderful, totally, perfect, etc. ad nauseam. I believe the average third grader would be considered eloquent compared to this moron. By-the-way, here’s another example of Donnie’s “telling it like it is;” He threatened every school he attended as he was growing up with a lawsuit if they revealed his grades. Any of you “common sense” champions need a hint? Before I move on, here’s another sweet morsel of a tidbit for you that I almost forgot to share; I read that one of Trump’s demands to the producers of “The Apprentice,” was that every time his name was mentioned in the show, they had to add, “Trump, the billionaire.” Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels taught Roy Cohn that i.e. the bigger the lie & the more often you say it, the sooner it becomes a fact or a truth. And Roy Cohn was Trump’s mentor & Joseph McCarthy’s right-hand man in the Communist Witch Hunts of the 1950s so you see, Trump does know something about witch hunts.

Cohn was a mob lawyer & one of the most vile creatures to ever crawl out of that swamp in New York City

 

You see, my friend, that old adage of; What you don’t know can’t hurt you, is bullshit! Ignorance can be deadly. Here are a few fun facts for you but of course if you are a Trump acolyte, facts & truth don’t matter, all you need to do is believe everything the Fuhrer tells you:

when you don’t give a shit about knowledge, “alternative facts” are easy to accept

 

  • Despite being a global economic & political leader, illiteracy continues to be a pervasive problem in the U.S.
  • Approximately 32 million adults in America are considered to be illiterate.
  • About 14% of the entire adult population cannot read.
  • Among developed nations, the U.S. ranks 16th for adult reading skills.
  • Between 40 and 44 million adults, or roughly 20 to 23% of adults in the U.S., are limited to reading at the basic or below basic proficiency levels.
  • Some 30 million adults aren’t able to comprehend texts that are appropriate for 10-year olds.
  • An estimated 63 million adults read between a sixth and eighth grade level.
  • Research has also linked illiteracy to poverty as an adult.
  • As many as 75% of welfare recipients struggle to read even the simplest texts.
  • In terms of lost productivity, it’s estimated that the portion of the population that can’t read costs the nation a staggering $225 billion each year.

    I read this book 30 years ago & it’s truly scary how ignorant we are as a nation

 

What reading level do you think Trump or his sycophants

Read at? Observers have estimated that Trump reads at about the fifth-grade level & this is probably why he refuses to read his daily briefings as president. Don’t you think we should have a president who can at least read at the 12th grade level? Do I have to remind you that we live in a very complex world which requires someone with the kind of power that Trump has at his fingertips, to be able to think on their feet? And forget about critical or analytical thinking skills when it comes to the Duckmeister. He’s a sad & bad joke when it comes to intellectual prowess.

If you’d care to understand the historical context of why we celebrate morons like Trump, read this classic

 

Why do you think Trump is such a big fan of conspiracy theories? Why is Alex Jones a trusted friend? And as for FOX “news,” I have been saying for nearly the 20 years since FOX began that it’s a farce to even consider FOX “News” a legitimate news program. It is the American version of Pravda. Pravda was the state newspaper of the former Soviet Union but their citizens new it was propaganda & disregarded it. Yet here in the land of freedom & opportunity, we seem to be the world’s biggest suckers & will fall for anything, even a puffed-up, nonstop braggart who is using the office of the president of the United States to shamelessly enrich himself & clearly is a con man, a traitor, and a serious threat to all of us!

Trump’s info sources; Alex Jones, The National Enquirer, & FOX “News”

 

In conclusion, I’ll leave you with this brief insight into why some people believe conspiracy theories. Note how fond Trump is of conspiracy theories i.e. it’s all a mass plot by the Democrats, a witch hunt, etc.

 

The desire for control and security. People need to feel they’re in control of their lives. For instance, many people feel safer when they’re the driver in the car rather than a passenger. Of course, even the best drivers can get into accidents for reasons beyond their control.

Likewise, conspiracy theories can give their believers a sense of control and security. This is especially true when the alternative account feels threatening. For example, if global temperatures are rising catastrophically due to human activity, then I’ll have to make painful changes to my comfortable lifestyle. But if pundits and politicians assure me that global warming is a hoax, then I can maintain my current way of living. This kind of motivated reasoning is an important component in conspiracy theory beliefs. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/talking-apes/201801/why-do-people-believe-in-conspiracy-theories

 

Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan is clearly paranoid & suffers from delusions of grandeur but will America survive this petty tyrant with an insatiable greed & totally lacking in any sense of basic, human decency?

he spends a lot of time on the toilet because he’s so full of shit!

 

—-Rob DeLoss, Gold Beach, Oregon Sept. 29, 2019

 

Addendum

I get so caught up in detailing the lies & machinations of the Trump circus that I sometimes forget to step-back & point out the big picture. Trump is the ring master for the true Power Elite (The Power Elite is a 1956 book by sociologist C. Wright Mills, in which Mills calls attention to the interwoven interests of the leaders of the militarycorporate, and political elements of society and suggests that the ordinary citizen is a relatively powerless subject of manipulation by those entities.) It’s clear as a bell to all but the hopelessly brain-dead that Trump doesn’t have the brain power to pass a GED exam let alone hatch an intricate conspiracy to take over America.

we should add Congress, the Corporate Media, Higher Education, etc. to his warning

 

No, Trump is what is known as a “useful idiot” (In political jargon, a useful idiot is a derogatory term for a person perceived as propagandizing for a cause without fully comprehending the cause’s goals, and who is cynically used by the cause’s leaders. ) and the term circus master is an appropriate descriptor of this vile person because like a magician, Trump distracts us from the hidden agenda of the power elite. The Republican party overwhelmingly remain silent no matter how outrageous the rhetoric or the crimes of Trump because his distractions keep the public’s attention on the idiocy of Trump and off the G.O.P.’s raping, pillaging, & plundering of our economy & by extension, the world’s poor & the natural resources of most of the world.

 

Magicians have told us again & again of how they distract their audiences with one hand while the other hand does the “magic.” And the magic that Trump does so well is keep the public pissed-off and fighting amongst themselves with his racial slurs, his conspiracy theories, his blaming the media, the Muslims, the Mexicans, the liberals, the Democrats, etc. etc. etc. And his Duck Dynasty hillbillies love him for allowing & encouraging their venting of their racist, anti-intellectual, & poisonous and scary, preapocalyptic fantasies.

 

Many, if not most, of these Neanderthals are as happy as pigs rolling in the mud as they watch Donny dismantle every federal agency’s ability to perform their mission to protect us from the greed of the 1%. But when they can no longer drink the water out of the spigots in their homes like in Flint, Michigan, breathe the air where they live because it’s too toxic or poisonous, trust the food they put into their kids’ mouths, pay their electric bill, afford to drive their cars, put a roof over their family’s heads, count on their Social Security checks coming in, have their life savings stolen along with their pensions, etc., they will only have themselves to blame. They were so stupid as to actually believe a phony billionaire was on their side.

 

Trump is truly a clown, a very scary clown & one that doesn’t give a shit about anything except his gold-plated toilet & the childish thrill of texting absurd Tweets 24/7 and receiving so much attention from the chaos he thrives on. I’ll leave you with one last bit of that “common sense” that is so elusive to the average American, especially the FOX “News,” bubble-brains, that horrible media, you know, “the enemy of the people,” gave Donny billions of dollars of free publicity when he was running for office & Bernie Sanders received a small fraction of media attention. So, how is it that now, whenever journalists dare to criticize Trump, they’re his enemy? Whenever they give him positive attention, he kisses their asses but when they dare to point out his vulgar speech & behavior, they’re liars and on a witch hunt to destroy him?

 

This most egregious example of all that is worst in us, Trumpelstiltskyn, would suffer a total mental & emotional meltdown if he weren’t the center of attention for even a single day. So, congratulations all you simpletons, you got what you wished for. I’ll see you as we paddle our life-rafts over our former fields of amber grain!

Is this what you Trump supporters look forward to after he’s destroyed our government?

 

 

 

 

Democracy’s Delusion

Trump, the “Chosen One” according to the “Christian” fundamentalists

 

 

“Those who sacrifice freedom for safety deserve neither.”

—Thomas Jefferson

 

One of America’s central delusions is that of free speech. And the powers that be, those CEOs who run the mammoth, corporate conglomerates who tell politicians & presidents when to shit & when to get off the pot, silence those who speak a little too freely. In nations like Mexico, they’re not very subtle & they simply murder journalists who inform the public about the corruption that is impoverishing their citizens.

 

But here in the good old U.S.A. our political/corporate elite hide their dark agendas behind grandiose words like; freedom, democracy, liberty, etc. Take five minutes to skim over the names of the most prominent right-wing or conservative think tanks & you’ll take my point.

 

You see, here in the land of the free & home of the brave, we’re supposed to just wave our flags on the 4th of July, Memorial Day, etc. and then shut the fuck up rest of the time. If you dare to question or criticize our government, as Thomas Jefferson said was not only our right but our duty, you are told to “Love it or leave it.” How’s that for freedom?

 

My motivation for writing this essay is the fact that I’m getting so fuckin’ tired of being told to either shut-up or leave when I begin to talk about political matters in bars. And it’s usually some bartender that knows nothing about what’s happening in our country & could give a shit less but has a smug sense of superiority because they have the “power” to 86 me.

 

I hate this feeling of being in a constant verbal straitjacket and want to scream Fuck you, you little flunky bartender! The older I become, the more I realize just how unfree we are in this fairy tale land we call America. My political awakening began in my late teens when I kept going AWOL from the U.S. Army because I didn’t think going to Vietnam was such a great idea.

The darkest days of my life until I lost my wife

 

And throughout my 20s, whenever I was partying with my friends, they often mocked me for my comments & opinions which seemed so foreign to them. They were mostly good natured though so I kept trying to get through to them. But again, as I grew older & was confronted sometimes with physical threats in bars, I became more disillusioned with this whole farce we call Democracy. You may think me a liar but I don’t give a fuck because I know my truth i.e. conservatively, I have spent at least 50,000 hours over my adult life reading, taking notes, listening, watching, researching, & writing about American politics & foreign policy. So, yeah, I dare to speak with an air of confidence or self-assuredness on many of the issues facing us today. And I welcome anyone who cares to challenge me intellectually because I know I’ve paid my dues & continue to do so.

 

So, go ahead, make my day as Clint Eastwood is famous for saying. When you consider the pathetic state of awareness of the average American & read the statistics regarding American’s reading habits, etc., I take comfort in knowing that I am light-years ahead of most of my countrymen. And no, I don’t give a shit how elitist that makes me sound & I know how much Trump followers detest elitists like myself because we “make them feel inferior.”

 

Well, my response is, if the shoe fits? This is a cop-out & these intellectually lazy citizens refuse to accept responsibility for their not being willing to pick up a book on a regular basis & blame those who are intellectually superior to them for acting superior. I came from the poor side of the tracks, raised by a single mother with a brother & two sisters. I was the eldest & began cooking for my siblings when I was 12 years old. Made them do their chores, their homework, be in bed on time, fought their battles, etc. So, don’t give me your sob stories claiming that you couldn’t find the time to go to the library & read and educate yourself.

 

Returning to the main thesis of this essay, over the years, I have occasionally been in a bar where we were “allowed” to speak freely and a serious political discussion/debate ensued & I absolutely loved it when I saw the spark in people’s eyes or their faces light up. And once in a while after such intense discussions, one or more of the participants would come up to me and say things like; “Wow! That was the best conversation I’ve had in ten years,” or “I learned so much, thank you!” And yeah, I’ve gotten into some heated debates with individuals but realized that their mind was closed & I was just beating my head against the wall. So, I’d end it by saying something like; Well, we’re obviously getting nowhere so can we just agree that we disagree? And we’d either change the subject or go our separate ways peacefully.

 

Continuing on, I fondly recall an experience I had while waiting in the cell outside the courtroom in Oakland, CA awaiting my appearance before the judge for a D.U.I. There were approximately six young black guys, a couple of older black guys near my age & myself. The young guys were gangbangers & drug dealers (I learned this from overhearing their conversations)

 

Well, they got into a religious debate and one of them had long, Dred-locks and was in favor of Buddhism while the others were mostly Christian. Their debate went on for about a half hour and I could no longer resist so I raised my hand like a boy in school. They cracked-up and nodded that it was okay for me to join in. I soon found myself serving as a sort of moderator & interjected at times; “Okay, now it’s his turn” and would point to another individual so he could say his piece.

 

We were let out of jail in the middle of the night & these young gangsters took me under their wings so-to-speak. They walked me to the nearest BART station & accompanied me to the best stop for me to connect & get back to the Berkeley area where my van was. And they hugged me as we parted.

 

I tell you this not to brag but to show you that even in such harsh conditions as being locked-up in jail, people can behave in a civilized manner even when discussing religion which I believe is the other taboo subject we’re not supposed to talk about in bars?

 

So, tell me, do you believe the “common wisdom” that if people talk about politics in bars, things are likely to get out of control i.e. fights will break out? I feel that what this taboo is saying is that we can’t be trusted to behave in a civil manner, especially when we’re drinking. I say, Bull-shit!

 

People start fights or get into fights in bars for any one of thousands of reasons & politics may be a reason they do now & then but that doesn’t mean that we should ban political speech in bars absolutely. If a person becomes belligerent in a bar for whatever reason, yeah, kick them out but don’t censor all of us for what a minority of assholes may do. Because this makes a mockery of our Declaration of Independence, our Bill of Rights, & our supposed freedoms.

 

Here’s something for you to mull over if you will; Why do we have over 900 military bases around the world with God knows how many “black op sites,” supposedly to protect & promote democracy abroad but we can’t speak about matters that affect our democracy at home when we’re in bars, the most common meeting place for citizens on a regular basis?

 

And no, I’m not trying to paint some grand Alex Jones conspiracy theory but it sure is interesting to note how this taboo just coincidentally benefits the 1%. What other public location or institutions allows us to speak freely to one another?

 

I have even been kicked-out of some bars for pointing out to bartenders who commanded me to shut up because I was talking about politics, when other customers were talking about local political matters i.e. city hall, road construction, etc. I’d say, hey, they’re talking about politics & boy would the bartender become flustered & immediately proclaim their authority; “Get out!”

 

Seems that local politics are basically okay to speak about but not national or international politics? So perhaps we’re getting a bit closer to the truth or the reality of our so-called “freedom of speech” in America? We’re allowed to speak freely within the confines of our own homes but hardly anywhere else? And we’re allowed to speak freely as long as it isn’t about any sensitive subjects that might offend the 1%, you know, the super elite that Trump wishes he were a part of but who won’t allow Little Lord Fauntleroy into their clubs.

 

We definitely lose all our rights when we walk through the entrance to our workplace because private employers are tyrannies and Walmart is a prime example i.e. if any employee dares to mention forming a union, they are out the door. Our election system is fast becoming a joke & is resembling more & more those “banana Republics” which we have looked down our noses at for decades even though we helped create them—see Major General Smedley F. Butler of the U.S.M.C.

This is the ugly truth behind the corporate cockroaches’ agenda of perpetual war

 

Gerrymandering, voter suppression/intimidation, tampering with voter machines, & Russian hacking which Mitch McConnell won’t allow us to do anything about, etc. has clearly made a mockery of our much-touted free elections. So much for expressing ourselves via the voting booth.

 

Moreover, if you’ll spend even a modicum of time checking out:

 

Jaron Lanier; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kc_Jq42Og7Q&t=4s

 

Tristan Harris; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C74amJRp730&t=117s

 

Chamath Palihapitiya; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J54k7WrbfMg&t=5s

 

Shoshana Zuboff; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vo6K-bPh39M

 

Edward Snowden

 

Or the recent Netflix documentary; “The Big Hack”

 

You’ll begin to realize the folly of turning to the “social media,” to save us. It is purposely designed to divide us & promote aggressive & fearful feelings between us because that brings more viewers (eyeballs) which increase their profits. Some of the above played pivotal roles in bringing about the social media so you might pay close attention to what they’re saying.

 

Perhaps most importantly, the revelations regarding Cambridge Analytica & Trump’s “winning” of the presidency proves just how extensively our “democracy” has been hacked & hence, our gradual slide into mere drones for the powers that be.

 

Specifically, what do our other supposed freedoms mean if we don’t truly have freedom of speech? Freedom of speech is the bedrock, the cornerstone, the foundation of all our other freedoms in the Bill of Rights, & the Declaration of Independence.

 

And speaking of The Bill of Rights, are you aware of how the powers that be gutted this so-called sacred document of our Republic shortly after the events of September 11, 2001? Yep! Because the Bush administration had been asleep at the wheel, they scrambled to cover their ignorance, laziness, & ineptitude by ramming through these draconian assaults on our “holy” rights & freedoms as Americans. Not very reassuring in my book i.e. just how firm is the “foundation” of this nation that struts the world stage declaring how powerful we are & that we have the best form of government on Earth. (see https://ccrjustice.org/home/blog/2015/11/17/911-decade-and-decline-us-democracy

 

If you’d care to inform yourself more on this sad subject)

 

Last night, in less than ten minutes, I came up with this list of subjects we’re not allowed to talk about in bars because if we do, within a matter of minutes, we’ll be discussing political matters:

 

  1. The recent slaughter in El Paso
  2. The Vietnam War
  3. The Iraq War
  4. The social media
  5. Losing our jobs
  6. Being homeless
  7. NAFTA
  8. Student debt
  9. Global warming
  • Nuclear war
  • Trump’s tweets
  • The coming Recession or Depression?
  • Bankruptcy
  • Health insurance or the lack thereof
  • The future of work
  • Christian fundamentalists support of Trump

 

For the past decade or better, I have tried to be tactful when people tell me that they’re not interested in politics. And my usual response is something like; Oh, I see? So, you’re not interested in whether or not you lose your job, your health insurance, your pension, etc. And believe it or not, it really does sadden me that I have to keep pointing out to people that politics affects every aspect of our lives & we’d better wake the fuck up!

what have they all died for?

 

To not do so is to spit on the graves of all those soldiers, sailors, marines, & airmen who sacrificed their lives for these freedoms that we so love to brag about to the world. We are slip-sliding into Trump’s Totalitarian Terrorism (my phrase) here at home & abroad and it’s up to us as individuals & as citizens of America to stand up on our hind legs & yell; “I’m as Mad as Hell & I’m not going to take it anymore!”

Half a million young people sharing Love, Peace, & Music for 3 days

 

I’m so glad that my “coming of age” was in the 1960s because although we were naïve romanticists & idealists, it felt so wonderful to share the same mass delusion with so many brothers & sisters as evidenced in the miracle known as Woodstock and our Flower Power Revolution.

Love, Trust, & Freedom in the 1960s. Compare that with today in Trump’s racist America & hate rallies

 

Persevere & Viva la Revolucion!

 

 

Facebook & the Road to Fascism

 

 

 

 

 

I fear that those of you who may take the time to read this essay will be tempted to dismiss my thoughts as those of a paranoid conspiracist? And yes, this is going to be a very convoluted or complicated subject because it involves the very technology that affects every one of our lives. Now most people will become defensive or attempt to retreat into a bubble of denial because the scope of what is being done to us is global & has such a pernicious effect on humanity as a whole.

remember the argument against homeschooling i.e. they need to develop social skills???

 

My personal experience has been that of a somewhat reluctant participant especially regarding “Smart phones.” And I wish that I had followed my initial aversion towards Facebook. My gut told me that Facebook was for teenage girls the first several years it came into existence but a cousin of mine told me that we had lots of relatives in Eastern Oregon that I wasn’t even aware of. So, I asked him how I could contact them thinking it’d be nice for my son to get to know more of his relatives. It never panned-out but I became hooked-on Facebook & slowly began to spend more & more of my time on it.

 

I was under the delusion that I could be of help & share some of the knowledge that I had been hoarding up for decades. I would write short essays practically on many of the serious social & political issues facing us. And once in a while I’d get a comment like; “I learned so much from you,” etc. But especially after the introduction to emojis, even a single sentence in response to my posts just about disappeared entirely & an emoji was all that people could manage to “communicate.”

 

And over the last couple of years that I was a Facebook user, I’d deactivate my account for months at a time to see if any of my “friends,” would notice. I had accumulated over 3,000 “friends” when I finally quit Facebook for good & with each passing day, I am so glad that I finally saw the light i.e. Facebook is the enemy of humanity & has done more to divide us than just about anything I can think of.

 

Do you recall Zuckerberg’s stated mission when Facebook began? And he still claims it to be their goal, yeah, to bring people together in a sense of community. Well, you’d have to either extremely naïve or willfully ignorant to not acknowledge that Zuckerberg has become one of the wealthiest men in America because of his selling our personal information to any buyer with enough money.

 

I am going to rely on & cite from two major sources for this article. The first is a You Tube video that I stumbled upon; “Social Media: Toxic by Design (Sam Vaknin)”

 

 

Now, I had my suspicions or doubts about Facebook the longer I participated on it, but this “interview” with Sam Vaknin blew my mind because of his in-depth revelations about the psychology of how this platform actually operates or conducts its nefarious work. So, hold on to your hats my friends, we’re headed for one helluva rollercoaster ride.

 

 

Before we get started, I want to acknowledge that I basically transcribed the entire “conversation” between Vaknin & his interlocutor —who basically took notes on what Vaknin was elaborating on. Therefore, I’m just going to put in quotation marks (some of the time)  whatever Vaknin said & not cite him every single time in the hope of making this article read a bit more naturally than some scholarly work? Note: I did search for a transcript of this talk but had no luck. By-the-way, I am using the term “fascism” in the sense that Mussolini did (though some disagree that he described it this way);

 

““Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power”

For the record, I am no fan of Alex Jones or his absurd conspiracy theories though Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan is. And Donny of the Small Fingers & Tiny Brain is also an avid reader of The National Enquirer, you know that publication of such high repute. And the more we get into this Edgar Allen Poe tale of horror, the more you will realize how our collective dumbing-down has contributed to our downfall.

from the time I was a teenager, we knew the Enquirer was only good for one thing i.e. the bottom of your birdcage

Let’s begin with the inner machinations of our benevolent “Big Brother” Marky Zuckerberg & the platform he stole from his college “friends,” i.e. Facebook.

 

I was instantly a fan of Vaknin’s when he mentioned Facebook & its appeal to teenage girls because as I mentioned earlier, that was my initial appraisal of the “platform.” Vaknin begins with; “You’re constantly competing against yourself to get more likes than on your last post.” Two thoughts came to me regarding this; 1) we clearly are an overly competitive society i.e. our lives are measured in how well we do in competition against our fellow students, workers, neighbors, etc. 2) and this is closely linked to our crass materialism as well as our cult of celebrity i.e. so many of us desire national, if not worldwide celebrity. It’s as if we’re a nation of insecurity even though we have the most powerful military & economy on Earth? Prima facie evidence; Trump’s constant need for recognition & approval. And most tragically, the gunman or mass shooters who crave attention & go on killing sprees to get it.

 

This self-competition creates “performance anxiety.” And as a male in this society & especially as an old fart, I can attest to this anxiety when every great now & then, I am honored to share a bed with a lovely lady.

 

“Social media has tripled young people’s anxiety.” Obviously, in a world as unpredictable & unstable as ours, where not only the young but the middle-aged & even many seniors are so full of anxiety as to whether they’ll be able to pay their rent & afford their medications, the last thing young people need is more anxiety.

Yep! The G.O.P. idea of “A kinder & gentler nation,” & “Compassionate Conservatism.”

 

“Social media is like an epidemic, a virus.” You’re goddamn straight! I look around me and it never ceases to sadden me how virulent an epidemic it has become. It’s like we’re living in a world of the Walking Dead but the zombies are all hypnotized by their “Smart phones.”

 

“The world is being divided into two camps; those who use social media & those who don’t.” And Hallelujah brothers & sisters to those of us who have awoken from Zuckerberg et al, the Pied Pipers of Hamlin & their siren songs. As I get older, I realize just how precious this gift of life we’ve been given is. And to be honest with you my imaginary friend, since my soulmate has passed away, Jeri, I care less & less about how much time I have left but I do care about the quality of that time i.e. I’m not going to squander my time on such trivial matters as how many “likes” I have received.

Here’s one you Sci-fi fans are sure to love; “This is a reengineering of human psychology.” Yeah, many of you who are younger & grew up in your video game worlds & who may believe that artificial intelligence is a natural progression for the human species, may not be troubled by this? Well I sure as Hell am troubled but no, I’m not so fearful that I worry that we’re about to be taken over as in the classic; “I, Robot” by Isaac Asimov, the master of science fiction.

 

We must always remember a basic axiom of computer technology, one that I learned way back in 1983/1984 when I took a course called; “Computer Literacy.” It’s called, G.I.G.O. (Garbage In, Garbage Out) In other words, the information we get out of our computers i.e. the Internet, is only as valid as the people putting that info on the internet. What I’m saying is that anybody, even Alex Jones & Donnie the Trumpster Dumpster can say whatever they want on the internet but that doesn’t make it truth or valid.

 

Let me break it down for you, I had to take a ridiculous half-unit course called; Introduction to College Life, after three years of pursuing my B.A. in English Literature. They showed us where the library was & other useful things. But, in this little pamphlet they gave us, what really caught my attention was this; (roughly paraphrasing from memory) “To determine the truth of a statement/claim, there are two requirements; 1) check out the credentials of the person making the claim, 2) see what other experts in the field of this subject, have to say about the person making the claim to truth.”

 

Sorry but I can’t help but invoke our illustrious leader here as a prime example of definitely someone you shouldn’t listen to. Just because he raises his little hands & proclaims; “Believe me,” doesn’t mean that you should give him the time of day. Of course, his Walking Dead-heads would never doubt his credentials to speak as if he were god himself proclaiming from the pulpit like Captain Ahab in “Moby Dick,” one of the handful of American classics in literature.

The first graduating class of Trump University

 

Continuing on, “Social media was created by men i.e. schizoids, recluses, socially inept, nerds, asexuals. And they created social media in their own image” i.e. as if they were the standard by which all others would be judged. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to argue that we should model ourselves after Hollywood celebrities & we know how fucked-up most of them are. But if you’ll allow me to reveal a bit of my elitist educational perspective, perhaps we should attempt to emulate the Renaissance man/woman? (in case you don’t catch my drift, I’m being facetious i.e. my secondary education was in Paramount, a poor, industrially zoned city across the riverbed from Compton)

 

Renaissance man, also called Universal Man, Italian Uomo Universale, an ideal that developed in Renaissance Italy from the notion expressed by one of its most-accomplished representatives, Leon Battista Alberti (1404–72), that “a man can do all things if he will.” The ideal embodied the basic tenets of Renaissance humanism, which considered man the centre of the universe, limitless in his capacities for development, and led to the notion that men should try to embrace all knowledge and develop their own capacities as fully as possible.

Thus, the gifted men of the Renaissance sought to develop skills in all areas of knowledge, in physical development, in social accomplishments, and in the arts. The ideal was most brilliantly exemplified in Alberti—who was an accomplished architect, painter, classicist, poet, scientist, and mathematician and who also boasted of his skill as a horseman and in physical feats—and in Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519), whose gifts were manifest in the fields of art, science, music, invention, and writing.”

 

Obviously, that Big Mac occupying the oval office couldn’t even spell Renaissance let alone hold a candle to the ideal. But, he is clever when it comes to manipulating not only the social media but the corporate media. He has had the “mainstream media” (corporate media) eating out of his hand all his manipulative “adult” life & most critically, since he announced his run for the presidency. The Duckmeister —who ducked serving in the military, ducked legal cases for fraud for decades, ducked revealing his taxes which we can be pretty damn sure he hasn’t paid & would reveal him for the faux billionaire he claims to be — has clearly bamboozled the section of the American public who believe in jet set televangelists.

Trump revealed!

 

Unfortunately for the rest of us, due to the apathy and ignorance of our general population, & the corruption of our electoral system, this miscreant who can barely form a coherent sentence, is now at the helm of the once proud nation known as the United States of America. And whether we allow this travesty of justice & everything we consider sacred & dear, is up to each & every one of us!

 

Furthermore, the technology employed by the social media engineers of Silicon Valley was designed for highly specific psychological profiling. For example, all those seemingly innocent Facebook posts inviting us to take a quick survey to see what decade we most identified with, etc., are anything but innocent. And I too took many of those surveys. We are slowly waking up to the fact that Facebook, Google, Amazon, Cambridge Analytica, etc. have been selling all our data to companies who use our info to target us on an individual level in their 24/7 advertisements. And this isn’t just about selling us crap, it’s also about conditioning us socially, emotionally, politically, etc.

Beware means Be Aware!

 

We have gone far beyond Orwell’s nightmare world of “1984,” or Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World.” Yet, the majority of Americans either refuse to believe these facts or don’t even care.

 

I’m sure that most of you have heard the expression; “Divide & Rule,” or “Divide & Conquer,” well, this is an ancient military tactic or strategy that probably goes back as far as Ancient Rome if not farther? But in this dystopian world we are living in today, this tactic is being used by the corporate masters who actually rule the world. And this is why Trump constantly whips his “base” up by stoking their fears with his descriptions of Mexicans, Muslims, and all who aren’t white males, as the enemy, “infestations.”

Trump busy draining the swamp by playing golf. Remember his criticism of Obama’s days off? And we pay for Trump’s golf trips to his golf courses???

 

F.D.R. summed it up nicely when he declared; “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Trump is a master distractor in that he keeps those who support him distracted from our real enemies i.e. the 1% who own everything. So, Trump’s army of the psychologically walking dead can vent their anger on all who aren’t in their exact position economically or socially. It’s far harder to see beyond your anger & to realize that these people & these groups you’re blaming for your troubles, are de facto fellow victims of the 1%. In short, by dividing us, Trump & his fellow elite have conquered us. The U.S. is slipping into a fascist tyranny of the filthy rich & this makes a mockery of all the wars we supposedly fought in defense of freedom & democracy.

It’s very simple i.e. Divide & Conquer!

 

As long as we sit complacently by in front of our T.V. screens & our computer screens, we will play the role of helpless victims. And Sam Vaknin points out the proven psychological harm being done to us as we spend more time exposed to screen time i.e. greater levels of anxiety, depression, suicide, decreases in happiness & life satisfaction. Moreover, teen suicide has doubled & suicide is the leading cause of death for young people up to the age of 24.

 

Above all, the conditioning we are experiencing the more we use the “social media,” is so pernicious that they—the “social engineers” of these technological platforms—are literally hacking into our brains & our behavior. I know this probably sounds like some paranoid, science fiction world that Trump would espouse but it’s very real. If it is absurd & just too fantastic to believe, then why are billions being spent by these megalithic corporations like Facebook, Google, Amazon, etc.? Are they just throwing their money away in delusions of grandeur?

 

You see, my imaginary reader, the corporate conglomerates dream world is one in which there are no protestors demanding a fair wage, safe working conditions, etc., only docile, obedient workers who are grateful for whatever scraps the corporate lords toss them & who buy their products & services with whatever small allowance they are given.

I’ve been referring to FOX “News” for nearly 20 years as the Fear & Hate channel

 

Edward Snowden only mentioned it briefly in the documentary Laura Poitras created about his courageous efforts to reveal to us what was happening in the NSA with the help of Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc. He said; “It’s about Control.” Control & Conditioning are one & the same to my way of thinking. And Sam Vaknin points out repeatedly that there is an important distinction between conditioning & addiction.

 

Tristan Harris, who worked for Google as a “Design Ethicist,” was one of those “social engineers” who helped to design the bells & whistles so-to-speak that help addict people to these social media platforms. Fortunately for those of us who care about these matters, Mr. Harris’s conscience got the better of him & he resigned from Google & began to spread the word in the hope of helping people wake-up from these harmful technologies. And when he spoke about how the feedback of “likes,” emojis, etc. trigger the lowest part of our brain-stem, our reptilian brains, I sat up & took notice. You see, Vaknin, Harris, & others have pointed out that human nature is ruled more by fear, anger, violence, & chaos (my paraphrasing) and this is why, the social engineers, or more precisely, the Mark Zuckerbergs & other top CEOs of these tech corporations deliberately chose the engineering models that they did i.e. by appealing to the lowest common denominator in humans, you ensure the widest possible audience to exploit or addict.

 

Furthermore, Vaknin informs us that addictions can be overcome but conditioning is much tougher to combat. One of the tools they use in their social engineering of us is the employment of envy in the construction of these platforms & it’s a pathological envy. They quantify envy with “likes,” “retweets,” etc. Then they leverage our envy to motivate us or cause us to adopt some course of action which they want to steer us towards.

Think about it!

 

In brief, they weaponize envy & even more so, they have weaponized aggression. Reflect on all the posts on Facebook attacking Hillary Clinton which were part of the massive PR campaign by Cambridge Analytica that was hired by Steve Bannon leading up to the presidential election of 2016. And they knew from all the personal data they had mined via Facebook, Google, Amazon, etc. just who to bombard with all their negative propaganda. Trump never would’ve become president were it not for this sophisticated & vicious psychological weaponry.

 

Continuing on, Vaknin also informs us that people confuse jealousy & envy. Jealousy motivates you to constructive action i.e. diet, exercise, etc., but pathological envy causes you to see the other as a source of frustration i.e. I can’t be like you so I will seek to destroy you. Are you beginning to realize just how anti-social these “social media” platforms actually are? Talk about Doublespeak? “All social media encourage aggression via their algorithms & via the way they foster interactions.”
(Emperor Nero’s top hit as Rome burned)

 

[I want to remind you again, my imaginary reader, that the overwhelming majority of this is almost verbatim by Vaknin but I’m being lazy & not using quotation marks nearly enough. I get so few readers that I don’t really give a damn anymore about following the “rules.”]

 

Facebook et al, encourage peer aggression, bullying, black humor, & brutal honesty. And these platforms encourage repeat compulsive use. And perhaps most significantly, aggression, envy, & hatred are the key emotions that encourage repeated use.

 

Conversely, “All psychological studies have shown or proved that Love does not encourage repeated actions or foster addiction.” These platforms were designed with Pathology in mind so it’s no wonder they’ve become platforms for hate speech, bullying, & fake news (Trump & White Supremacists, White Nationalists, etc.)

 

Pursuing this further, Twitter has capitalized (my phrase) on the fact that aggressive speech acts are much shorter than positive speech. It isn’t merely coincidental that Twitter was originally limited to 144 characters. The brevity was chosen to encourage negative speech which addicts people & motivates them to keep using the platform (is it any wonder that Trump has taken to Twitter like a Duck Dynasty Klansman?) [my question]

Trump Tweeting on his Throne of Tyranny

 

Vaknin goes on to point out that non-aggressive speech acts are a bit longer than aggressive ones i.e. love letters are effusive. I can attest to this, I once wrote a love letter to a girl in London that was something like 80 pages long (I was trying to persuade her to come to America).

 

“Social media” is the most asocial platform ever and has created an unprecedented wave of withdrawal & atomization. And those who have aggressive tendencies gravitate towards social media & enhance the toxicity. In short, it’s a self-perpetuating feedback loop, a negative filter which attracts, amplifies, & connects likeminded aggressive & dangerous people.

the social media’s role in domestic terrorism

 

This application is known as the “Network effect.” Let me remind you that as Vaknin stated earlier, this is only one of several different models that Zuckerberg could’ve used to launch Facebook but he purposely chose the Network effect because it was the most addictive (my paraphrasing). In other words, he knew it’d grow the fastest, become the most addictive & hence make him far richer than if he’d chosen a less harmful model. And the fuckin’ bastard has the audacity to still claim that he just wants to bring people together!

 

This “conversation” which I stumbled across on You Tube absolutely blew my mind because not only was it so illuminating but it was also the first time someone had ever broken down the mechanics so-to-speak of this world-wide phenomenon that I consider a social plague every bit as deadly as the bubonic plague that killed a third of the European population from 1340 to 1400.

 

Professor Vaknin continues to open our minds by informing us that we have numerous ways of organizing social interaction & poses the question; “Why did social media choose Networks rather than hierarchy or curated conversations with editors or moderators, for example?”

 

Before social media came on-line, we had other ways of interacting on-line in the cyber-world which had nothing to do with Networks i.e. forums. We were brainwashed by social media to believe that the only way to interact with others was through the Network model, it’s NOT TRUE!

Just bringing people together like G.E.”s “Bringing Good Things to Light” i.e. Nuclear weapons

 

It was purposely chosen because it’s the only model that has the Network Effect which leads back to Epidemiology (Epidemics). An epidemic is an infection sociological, psychological, or emotional. There are 20 to 30 existing models for on-line social interaction. They chose the only model that is self-replicating, self-duplicating & invades your DNA (your psychological DNA) and alters your brain via neuroplasticity and conditions you which later addicts you.

 

This has created a shared psychosis, mass hysteria, cults, including teenage death cults and it has created new types of role-models. It can be used for positive results i.e. Wikipedia which started as a Network model but became a cesspool of aggression, misinformation, slander & libel. But when Wikipedia went back to being curated, it went from three million editors to 60,000 because people were no longer interested i.e. they want the chaos & the aggression.

 

The professor continues; “Facebook, Twitter, etc. have maliciously & malevolently designed their algorithms for the destructive nature of people. But this (fortunately) is a self-limiting virus like the plague, etc. because the virus needs to leave some alive or it wipes itself out as well.

 

This has pathologized two billion people (Facebook’s members). I am reminded of the quote; “A Capitalist will sell you the rope to hang himself with.” These social media zombies (my phrase) swap their delusional world in the social media for reality & this is the definition of psychosis. (see Trump & “Reality T.V. i.e. “The Apprentice”)

 

By-the-way, I hope you’ll forgive me for a bit of bragging here but I never became a fan of “reality T.V.” I watched maybe one episode of perhaps the first “Reality T.V.” series; “Survivor” I believe it was called. And I said to my wife, this is crap! What is it telling us? Lying, backstabbing, cheating, etc. is the way to succeed. No thanks! And I never watched a single episode of “The Apprentice.”

Vaknin continues; “There’s never been a case in human history of a group so large, going psychotic (sick) except maybe Nazi Germany? And we can’t predict what will happen. However, there are some glimmers of hope; About 20% of people have left social media & some have even gotten rid of their “Smart” phones. And there are retreats where you can’t have your digital devices. There’s also a new diagnosis in the Physicians’ Desk Reference manual i.e. “Internet Addiction.”

Trump idolizes fascist leaders & his rallies feed his ego (his 4th of July military rally)

 

“The epidemic of the social media is reminiscent of zombie movies (note my reference to them as the Walking Dead).” There are groups of people who live within their worlds of multi-player games & teens who prefer to interact with other teens exclusively through social media. The amount of face-to-face social interaction among teens has dropped by 70% in the last 10 years. (and if this doesn’t worry you, you are part of the problem, not the solution—my words)

 

The bad news continues; Teenage dating has dropped by 63% & the number of sexual encounters between teens has dropped by 50%. Now this is probably good news for those of you who believe overpopulation to be the greatest threat to our survival & those “good Christian fundamentalists” among us?

Trump’s “Christian” values i.e. “Grab them by the pussy.”
Onward “Christian soldiers” Hear no evil. speak no evil, see no evil.
The “Christian” devaluation of women as purely sexual objects you can do what you want with.

 

Consequently, we have the social trend or reality that has boggled my mind since the first time I witnessed it i.e. groups of young people who seemingly are together, will walk into a pub for example but they don’t speak to one another except through their smart phones. Or, they are totally disengaged and are “communicating” with other friends who aren’t physically there.

The “Selfie” president, Selfish, Sadistic, & . Sick!

 

Or consider another disturbing trend i.e. “Selfies.” I’m going to skip this section of the “conversation” and simply say that the word “selfies” says it all. This “social media” is supposedly about “socializing” and connecting with others yet “Selfies,” reveal the truth i.e. it’s more about egocentrism & hence, just helps to further isolate us from one another.

 

Sorry if I burst your bubbles, all you “social beings.” Not really! Wake-up and smell the damn coffee you walking dead simpletons! Zuckerberg & his crony Masters of the Universe are “socializing” you into human lemmings who they can march right off the cliff into oblivion, or at least, docile servitude for the rest of your lives.

 

“Social media encourage Regression i.e. as we develop, we invest in others emotionally, etc. but social media causes us to regress into ourselves with primitive, baby-like defense mechanisms.” (see Donald Trump)

all hail Little Lord Fauntleroy, leader of the Free World

 

Incidentally, here’s more proof of just how monumentally unfit Donald the Draft Dodger is to inhabit the oval office; Another little minor “side-effect” of the stupendous “social media,” is known as “splitting.” And how appropriate because Trump is definitely a split-personality if not a Sybil with 16 or more personalities?

 

In this little toddler, would be emperor’s pea-brain, you’re either with him or against him & he throws his royal tantrums daily whenever someone dares to point out that the emperor wears no clothes i.e. he’s pure, unbridled greed, hatred, & jealousy.

 

In respect of “full disclosure,” I must remind you that the other coward, the Alfred E. Newman occupant of the White House, George W. Bush, also divided America into the equally simplistic & stupid dichotomy of; “You’re either with us or you’re against us.” But hey, no big deal, right? He just lied us into a totally unnecessary war with Iraq that only killed 5,000 or so American soldiers & approximately 100,000 Iraqis not counting of course all those who were maimed & those who fled their country.Several thousand American soldiers died in Iraq, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died & Bush jokes about it? This is how to corporate fascist elite really feel i.e. their deep sense of Patriotism

The “Golden Calf” worshipped by the good, ol’ boys

 

Of course, this all just proves how serious Trump was about “draining the swamp,” in Washington D.C. Yep! All you deep-fried Twinkie eating simpletons who believed Trump’s racist dog-whistles & have been salivating ever since, may eventually catch on as your food stamps, the modicum of health care you get, your subsidized housing, etc. is yanked away that it was your Grand Wizard, Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan, who fucked you yet again, not the poor Hispanics fleeing the drug lords or the Muslims fleeing religious persecution. But then again, as Einstein said;

 

“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”

Welcome to the world of Facebook & Trump

I despair though because Trump is clearly a vile low-life and yet no matter how despicable his behavior i.e. grabbing women by their pussy, or how crass the words that come out of his mouth, a third of the American public worship him? It’s clear that we have a national emergency when such a huge segment of our population glorifies such a detestable human being.

 

It’s prima facie evidence of how television & the movies & our pathetic public education system has failed us. And this essay is like spitting in the wind especially in post-literate America but at least my conscience is clear because I’ll never give up the fight to waken my fellow Americans from their mental & emotional lethargy.

 

Returning to the subject of the negative psychological aspects of the social media, another factor is called “splitting.” This boils down to simplistic “either or” thinking or rather reacting i.e. you’re either my friend or my enemy. And this is Trump in spades. His daily tirades & tantrums at every perceived insult clearly reveals that we have a pouting, third grader in the oval office. Also remember George W. Bush’s stupidity with his declaration; “You’re either with us or you’re against us,” in reference to the “War on Terrorism.” And social media caters to the most primitive defense mechanisms, behaviors, and traits in people. As Dr. Vaknin points out; “Therefore, there is no difference between social media & the tobacco industry who purposely put nicotine in tobacco to addict people.

tobacco industry’s top CEOs lying to Congress (see also Oil Industry, Banking industry, etc.)

 

And the nightmare gets even scarier i.e. social media adds to a lack of impulse control. Remind you of anyone? If you thought of Trump, give yourself a pat on the back. Again, all one has to do is turn on their television any time of day & any day of the week to witness our adolescent president in action.

 

Mr. Vaknin informs us that addictions can be treated and overcome but conditioning is much harder to overcome. And no, I’m not trying to paint some grand conspiracy, that’s Trump’s forte along with his paper of choice, The National Enquirer & his mentor, Alex Jones. But the effects of all this social media conditioning are destroying us as a nation & greatly amplifying the dangers to humanity.

 

Perhaps the core threat to our continuation as a species is the fact that humans are social beings & the social media has tapped into this powerful fact. Some of us are slowly waking up to the sinister manipulations of us by Facebook, Twitter, etc. and have stopped using the social media altogether but tragically, the majority of people couldn’t & don’t even want to contemplate life without their social media.

 

Do you think I’m exaggerating the power of social media? I invite you to observe closely for a single day people with their smart phones out in public, at home, in school, etc. I contend that they’re every bit as addicted & conditioned by their smart phones/social media as a hardcore heroin addict, meth user, etc.

 

As social beings, the most frightening thing for us isn’t lack of food, shelter, weather, etc., it’s being ostracized, excommunicated, or to not belong. Vaknin points out that people would rather die than to not belong. And when I reflect back on my life, I can see that I too have been looking for a sense of belonging or acceptance my whole life. My writing reflects that as well. I write in the hopes of being heard, in my desire to be understood. And hopefully this doesn’t sound too pathetic but the older I get, the more isolated I feel. As I stated earlier, I joined Facebook under the delusion/illusion that I would connect with others but the overwhelming majority of the 3,000 friends I collected on Facebook, couldn’t bother to even write a single word in response to the thousands of posts I submitted or the hundreds of essays that I wrote & posted. And here in the so-called “real world,” we’re not allowed to talk about politics in pubs or taverns so please tell me, where in the Hell are we allowed to honestly communicate with each other or how are we supposed to exchange ideas, console one another, & work to stop all this madness?

 

Vaknin cites a few examples of how critical our need to belong is from history i.e. Socrates & the Catholic Church’s power of excommunication which they wield like a club over the heads of their flock (my description). If you know a bit about history, you may recall that throughout history, the Church & the State have often vied for power over the people & sometimes they have joined forces to keep people submissive to their power. In my naivete & ignorance, I asked Noam Chomsky awhile back for an example of when the Church & State had united in their suppression of the public & he replied; When the Roman Empire officially adopted Christianity as the state’s religion.

 

Think about that for a few minutes. The Inquisition, the Holy Crusades, the Salem Witch Trials, the Christian missionary’s conversion of natives, etc. etc. etc. And in today’s Trump world, we witness the “Christian” fundamentalists who support Trump no matter what he says or does even though he’s like a poster boy for every cardinal sin there is because they too want the reins of power. These hypocritical “Christians” salivate at the thought of making America a Christian nation with them in charge/control over every aspect of our lives from what we can watch on T.V., how we dress, whom we can love, what we can say, etc. As someone quipped; “The American Taliban.” No, I’m not exaggerating, I wrote my first book on the subject & it’s truly scary. They are tickled pink with Mike Pence being in the role of our vice-president because they know how quickly he could become president were Trump forced out of office for any one of the hundreds of crimes he’s committed.

Trump knows all about witch hunts, he learned from his mentor, Roy Cohn, McCarthy’s right-hand man

 

Well, are you thoroughly depressed yet? Sadly, there’s more to come my friend. Returning to the subject of our fear of being excluded from any of the social groups to which we belong, social media does just this i.e. if you don’t play by their arbitrary rules, you are cut-off for a while. For example, I once included a picture of a beautiful young, hippie chick in a sample of a fantasy novel I have been working on for several years.

 

I believe it was a very tastefully done picture. It was a young woman standing on a rock by the ocean with her arms outstretched as if she were welcoming the new day. She was tan & had long dark, flowing hair and it showed her naked butt. And this was a violation of Facebook’s policies so I was cut-off for 30 days, I believe? Yet, pictures of people murdered by bombs, terrorists, etc. and countless other horrific scenes are no problem? Correction; I had to go back & look up the picture I’m talking about, it wasn’t her butt that was revealed, it was a side view of one of her breasts. I know, how shocking? But Trump’s misogynist insults about women & his behavior at beauty pageants, his buddy, Jeffrey Epstein, etc. is all fine as far as the “Christian” fundamentalists are concerned & Facebook’s guardians?

 

For me, one of the most pernicious aspects of the social media is their deliberate “dumbing-down” of their members. Intellectual matters are only rarely posted but “Selfies,” cute kittens, what people ate for dinner, etc. make up the majority of the posts. Keeping everything light & simple makes it easier for people to click that “like” button & speeds up the feedback loop that brings in more suckers & more customers for the corporations buying our data from Facebook & makes Zuckerberg richer.

 

Analogous to this deliberate dumbing-down it its customers i.e. Facebook members, is the fact that throughout history, the Church tried to keep its flock ignorant as well. For centuries, only the priests & royalty were taught to read so it was easier to control the public. Slaves in America were forbidden by law to learn how to read. And I argue that while it’s not a clear-cut case of conspiracy but the corporations who are the de facto rulers of America, also don’t want their average workers to be “too well educated,” because they often stir up the other workers to unite & form unions, etc.

 

As Vaknin points out, Facebook members soon internalize the message i.e. if I keep it simple & don’t use big words, I’ll be more popular and get more “likes.” This forces you to hide your true identity as I learned after wasting thousands of hours trying to reach people on an intellectual level. Moreover, if you’re empathetic, you have to hide that as well. If you’re a critical thinker, you must avoid revealing it.

 

I truly began to realize what a fool I’d been after Obama left office because if I dared to point out some of Obama’s hypocrisies i.e. never prosecuting the Wall St. wolves who destroyed our economy, his illegal & immoral drone warfare, etc. people who I had somewhat of a connection with, would send me nasty messages asking me to not include them in my posts, etc.

 

Yep! If you point out hypocrisy, contradictions between words & behavior, etc., you soon find yourself persona non grata. Obama is now put up on a pedestal as if he were a saint or something. And especially now with that miscreant Trump in the White House, people have buried every dirty deed of Obama’s. Don’t get me wrong, I hated all the racist attacks towards Obama—-Trump played a large part there as well—but I’ll never forgive him for his grand betrayal especially when he had such an overwhelming mandate as he took office.

 

Social media essentially rewards denial, denial of our better natures & it encourages our dark sides, our aggression, our regressive aspects, & our infantile personalities. Again, consider the occupant in the oval office, the bloated & bellicose baby throwing his daily fits. Is it any wonder that he can’t go a day without tweeting his verbal bile? Twitter is the perfect tool for such a lizard-brain racist & hate monger. In brief, Facebook & the other so-called social media is the breeding ground for narcissists & psychopaths. It forces you to fight with yourself i.e. the more you suppress the real you & join in the superficial & shallow, the more popular you are. I want to insert another fact from history here; if you look at military dictatorships around the world, whenever they take over a country, one of the first things they do is shut down the universities. Why? Because as the students become educated, they begin to share their knowledge with their countrymen & they begin to resist the dictators. And the powerful do the same with the media. Don’t tell me you haven’t seen Trump follow this same game plan here in America?

 

And this internal war or strife that many of us are experiencing is causing dissonance in our minds & our spirits. This is reflected in the growing levels of anxiety we are feeling. As Vaknin tells us, the minute you post a “selfie,” your anxiety level goes up because you are vulnerable i.e. what if people don’t like my picture, etc. When teens were asked if it made them feel good being on social media, 47% of them said No, it makes them feel bad. Of course, this begs the question, then why in the Hell do they stay with it? Obviously, they’ve become conditioned.

 

I feel that a brief description of “cognitive dissonance” would be useful at this point;

 

Psychologist Leon Festinger first proposed a theory of cognitive dissonance centered on how people try to reach internal consistency.2

He suggested that people have an inner need to ensure that their beliefs and behaviors are consistent. Inconsistent or conflicting beliefs lead to disharmony, which people strive to avoid.

 

In other words, the deeper we go in our study of the “social media,” the more evident it becomes that it is anything but socially engaging or helpful to us. In fact, it is making the world a more unsocial or asocial place. Just what we need as we’re facing our extinction via global warming or the ever-looming threats of a nuclear exchange & we have that smiling, Big Mac viper in the White House alienating our allies & kissing ass to the world’s despots & dictators.

Trump’s heroes (murderous dictators) & Trump’s gangbanger pose

 

The professor continues; Most of the behavior on social media is robotic i.e. it doesn’t give meaning, it merely gives pain or pleasure (my interpretation). You push a button & get a result and the more you push the buttons, the more results you get (Conditioning). Social media is simple, it’s anti-complex. There is no world for social media, it is the world! There is no reality outside it, they live in it.

 

These are simulated people, they live in the Matrix. Social media is their reality, bits & bytes are their atoms. Their families are their peers. They perceive reality to be unreal & they perceive unreality (social media) to be real. Can you spell Trump?

 

Social media is designed to deter intimacy & intimacy reduces the need for addiction. Wow! I can testify to this my friend. When I first met my wife, from day two i.e. our first date, we spent every night from then on, together. And as our relationship & our love grew, I spent less & less time getting high and getting drunk with my friends. Because Jeri didn’t put any chains on me, I wanted to be around her more & more. It felt so natural, healthy, & normal being with her. I could talk to her and felt I was always heard.

 

Dr. Vaknin says that Intimacy is the biggest addiction and I say, Hallelujah brother! Facebook competes with intimacy. (it’s a faux intimacy) You’re either intimate or you’re on Facebook. Intimacy simply consumes too much of your time & you don’t have time for other addictions.

 

Above all, “Facebook & Twitter rely on loneliness & atomization, schizoid, separated, hermits, recluses, nerds, socially inept & unable to bond people. Remember the guys who created these social platforms i.e. the nerds who became the prototypes of modern hip or cool. (my phrasing) Intimacy is the biggest threat to social media so they atomize individuals.

Need I say anything?

 

This theory refers to “the tendency for society to be made up of a collection of self-interested and largely self-sufficient individuals, operating as separate atoms”.[2] Therefore, all social values, institutions, developments and procedures evolve entirely out of the interests and actions of the individuals who inhabit any particular society. The individual is the ‘atom’ of society and therefore the only true object of concern and analysis.[3]

 

The facts are that you’re a shameless liar defending a habitual liar & sexual predator.

[A fact is a statement that is consistent with reality or can be proven with evidence. The usual test for a statement of fact is verifiability — that is, whether it can be demonstrated to correspond to experience. Standard reference works are often used to check facts. Scientific facts are verified by repeatable careful observation or measurement.]

In other words, the self is supreme. We only have to listen to ourselves, forget everyone else. Reminds me of the “Greed is Good” speech in Oliver Stone’s first movie called “Wall St.” And those of you around my age may remember Reagan’s celebration of Greed when he declared the 1980s the “Me Decade.” And once again my imaginary reader, this is precisely what we don’t need in this fragile state we’re all in. We need true social dialog & cooperation. I don’t mean to sound like an alarmist but if we don’t get our shit together and soon, those phony Christians may just get their wish i.e. Armageddon.

 

Furthermore, social media is built-in obsolescence on steroids (my phrase). Social media expires much faster than any product. The minute you post a tweet & the minute it’s been liked, 24 hours later it’s dead. And you need to renew the product & post another tweet. {see our Twittering Tweedledum in the oval office} These are the only manufacturers in the world who have made you their employee. The users are its employees. When you use social media, you generate the “Content.” And they sell your “content” to advertisers. Social media is supposed to be a “communication platform” but you do the communicating & they reap all the profits (my point).

 

And what really blew my mind & angered me beyond words was when I discovered that Facebook own the rights to our communications i.e. our “Content.” So, all the writing I posted on my Facebook page trying to explain complex issues, facts, historical knowledge, etc. etc. etc. was the property of Facebook and they can/could use it anyway they wanted. Yet we hear these corporations scream about their “intellectual property rights.” Yeah, their rights are all that matter, not ours!

 

Facebook continuously encourages people to share their thoughts, feelings, memories, etc. under the pretense that they’re fostering closer intimacy between its members when all the while, they’re selling our content to advertisers who use it in their attempts to sucker us into buying their products. We truly are a nation of Suckers & P.T. Barnum would be oh so glad to see what’s become of us. P.T. Barnum was the founder of the Ringling Brothers Circus & promoted hoaxes—probably Trump’s inspiration for his conspiracy theories—and P.T. Barnum is famous for declaring “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Clearly, Trump’s “base” is the three-ring circus clowns he’s suckered into cheering for their own demise i.e. taking away their food stamps, their jobs, etc.

Trump definitely is Public Enemy #1

 

Though Trump himself is more suited to the role of a Carnival huckster boasting & attracting suckers with his outrageous claims & devious techniques for robbing them blind. And it’s painfully obvious that Trump supporters are deaf, dumb, & blind because they so willingly go along with whatever he says or does no matter how perverse or illogical. They are literally the lambs happily marching to their slaughter. And as Dr. Vaknin also points out, these social media platforms are built for instant gratification like drugs. So, intimacy isn’t a direct threat but the real threat is that you’ll find someone through Facebook & will no longer use Facebook.

 

Specifically, Facebook & its competitors need your eyeballs i.e. your attention and your girlfriend, other social media platforms, T.V., etc. are all a threat to their domination of your attention. Case in point, Facebook won’t allow Google to crawl their database because that would take your attention away from Facebook for a portion of your attention. And Trump clearly needs all our attention all the time due to his massive insecurity & inferiority complex.

 

This faux intimacy that Facebook & others peddle to the unwary carries with it on the flipside, the constant risk of a large dose of pain i.e. you post a “Selfie,” and 3 out of 10 people may tell you how ugly you are. So, how in the Hell can you expect intimacy from these imaginary “friends?” Hence, users learn to interact on very superficial levels—to reduce their exposure to painful responses—and members become very pain averse. Social media has exponentially amplified the amount of negative social interaction and again, I can personally attest to this as well. Unfortunately, I spent way too much time responding to personal attacks on my character. We are such a misinformed & ignorant society as a whole that much of what I shared with people on Facebook was so obscure to most of the Facebook universe, that many people thought i’d just made the stuff I said up. And Trump is exhibit #1 as to why we need to banish “Selfies.”

 

Not to brag but to rightfully speak up in my defense, I have conservatively spent over 50,000 hours in approximately a 30-year period of avid reading, research, watching of documentaries, etc. in the areas of political science, history, philosophy, classical literature, etc. but because most of this knowledge isn’t common knowledge, many critics dismiss me as a troll, fabricator, etc. Therefore, the old adage of “What you don’t know can’t hurt you” is clearly a pernicious lie. Exposing yourself on Facebook by expressing your opinions, etc. can easily result in your being attacked by over 20,000 people at any given moment. And clearly, it’d take a very healthy ego or self-image to withstand this powerful an assault.

 

In conclusion, my central thesis is that Facebook plays a significant role in leading us down the path to fascism because it is all about corporate power to manipulate not only our choices in the marketplace but also in the voting booth. The G.O.P. has obviously shown that their love of power far outweighs their patriotism & remain silent as Trump trashes our society because they don’t want to lose their jobs. They use voter suppression, gerrymandering, rigging of election machines, & even turn a blind eye to the Russians hacking into our election system. Republicans should hang their heads in shame & move to countries where there is no pretense of freedom & democracy.

 

When I began writing this essay, I planned on incorporating the new documentary, “The Great Hack,” released on Netflix a few weeks back. But I realized that it would become too lengthy & most people wouldn’t even be able to sit still long enough to read the first part so I’m going to delve into the political part of Facebook’s crimes against humanity in a second essay which I’m going to title; “The Road to Fascism Part Two.”

Before I get into the meat & potatoes so-to-speak of my conclusion, I want to provide you with a few links by some people who played an integral part in the social media assault on democracy. Some of you may think me a fringe critic with my own agenda for whatever nefarious reasons so if you’re not afraid or too lazy to do a bit of homework unlike Donald Duck, check these critics out:

 

 

 

 

 

If you managed to find or make the time to watch the above video clips, I’m sure that you’ll agree that I haven’t exaggerated the very real threats to our survival as a democracy & as a species in the big picture. Okay, now for the connecting of the dots in terms of fascism:

Again, I can’t assume that everyone who might read this essay will be familiar with who Mussolini was due to our pitiful public education system so here you go.

Twin sons of different mothers (Trump & Mussolini)

For those of you who don’t know much about history, in the end, the citizens of Italy revolted against Mussolini & hung him for all to see in the public square. Remember; Pride cometh before a fall & Trump’s constant bragging is going to mean quite a fall for this low-life.

 

was Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Italy from the fascists’ takeover of state power in 1922 until 1943, and Duce from 1919 to his execution in 1945 during the Italian civil war. As dictator of Italy and founder of fascism, Mussolini inspired several totalitarian rulers such as Adolf Hitler.[2][3][

 

Mussolini’s foremost priority was the subjugation of the minds of the Italian people through the use of propaganda. The regime promoted a lavish cult of personality centered on the figure of Mussolini.

Some argue that Mussolini didn’t actually say the following quote but for the sake of this essay, I feel that it summarizes my point nicely;

““Fascism should more properly be called corporatism, since it is the merger of state and corporate power.”

 

And if you deny the truth of this statement in today’s America, you most likely are a member of Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan. I have been studying the rise of the corporate state for over 30 years but of course if you prefer to believe in Alex Jones, Donald Trump, & the National Enquirer, you probably haven’t read a single book in your life and therefore, my facts will totally escape you. Here’s Alex Jones, Trump’s friend & reliable source of facts;

Moreover, the Supreme Court’s ruling “Citizens United” handed down in 2010 effectively sold American democracy out to the corporate or fascist powers that be. Because corporations are no longer restricted in terms of how much money they can “donate” (bribe) to politicians. This has been described as the unleashing of “Dark Money” because corporations can hide their “donations” and not risk being boycotted by an informed public or having their hidden agendas to fuck their customers & the American public in general. One might argue that this was the opening of the door to the fascists taking over of our government. By-the-way, reflect on how tenaciously Trump refuses to release his tax information. He never tires of bragging i.e. lying about his prowess as a businessman so why does he refuse to reveal just how much money he is worth if he’s so proud of being a “billionaire?” Could it be that it’s all a grand lie he uses to dupe his White Supremacists & fellow fascists into believing he knows what he’s doing?

 

I used to have a blog called “Corporate Cockroaches,” but it was stolen out from underneath me so I’ve started again & my new blog is “The Cockroach Conspiracy.” And I have long argued that like cockroaches, when you turn the light on, they scurry for dark crevices & places to hide. And this is clearly indicative of corporate America. They strive to hide their profits, how they made their money, etc. because they know that we, the public, would tear them down if their crimes were revealed. They buy politicians with “donations,” because the politicians write the laws that can hurt or help them. This is the de facto state of democracy & we’re only deluding ourselves if we think otherwise.

 

Consider if you will if this is what our soldiers, sailors, airmen, & Marines have been fighting for, getting maimed for, & dying for around the world for the past century? Could it be that we have over 900 military bases around the world—and God knows how many secret or “black sites” —to support the corporate or fascist agenda of ruling the globe?

 

Fascism is the antithesis or the opposite of Democracy but the powers that be know that if they were honest & called it what it is, we’d revolt. So, the charade of our being defenders & promoters of democracy is vital for them to maintain. And the relatively recent phenomenon of the “Social media,” has proven to be a very effective weapon for corporate America in its decades long propaganda campaign to keep us dumb & hence easier to manipulate.

 

And let me remind you once again that no, this isn’t just a variation of an Alex Jones grand conspiracy. This is an agenda of the major corporations to ensure their continued profits & control over the institutions that were established to promote the general welfare of the public against the corporate interests.

Corporate power is like the elephant in the room that no one dares to mention because it would spell economic as well as political suicide for any who dared to. They’ve been getting away with their crimes against humanity, their gutting of true democracy, etc. for so long that the majority of us accept it as a law of nature or just the way it is.

 

Trump “won” the presidency because of the asinine electoral college system which allows a candidate to win even though they lost the popular vote. And he “won” because of the sophisticated/skillful machinations of Cambridge Analytica which I’ll delve into in part two. And he won because of the lack of moral integrity on the part of the Democratic party i.e. their sabotage of Bernie Sanders’ campaign.

 

I realize that this is all extremely depressing but does that mean it’s okay for us to bury our heads in the sand & proclaim that there’s nothing we can do about it because it’s all just too vast & complicated? Is that what you’ll tell your children or your grandchildren when they find themselves living in a giant gulag or Fortress America? H.G. Wells, one of the first science fiction writers, summed it up nicely in a quote from over a hundred years ago;

 

“Civilization is in a race between education and catastrophe. Let us learn the truth and spread it as far and wide as our circumstances allow. For the truth is the greatest weapon we have.”

 

If you dare to be honest with yourself, you’ll see that Trump is making Fascism our reality!

 

The ball is in your court my imaginary friend & my imaginary reader.

 

—Rob DeLoss, Gold Beach, OR August 17, 2019 (one day before the sixth anniversary of my dear wife, Jeri’s passing)

The Love of my Life, Jeri Ellen DeLoss & me.

 

P.S.  Sorry, I almost forgot to mention that the social media is a powerful tool being used to “win the hearts & minds” of the American public. Do you recall the U.S. Army’s campaign in the Vietnam War to “win the hearts & minds” of the Vietnamese people? This was the introduction of what they called “psy ops” (psychological operations) i.e. we, the citizens are the enemy of the corporate elite & they will stop at nothing in their agenda of absolute or total control over us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Center Cannot Hold

Obviously, America has become extremely polarized politically. I worry about the future of our democracy given the current state of affairs. Could somebody please explain to me how we’re supposed to resolve our differences when we’re in a verbal straightjacket when it comes to talking about politics in pubs & taverns?

 

Taverns are where people congregate on a regular basis, and I don’t believe people are more apt to become violent if they discuss/debate political matters. Violent people act out for thousands of reasons. Our soldiers are fighting around the globe supposedly to spread/defend freedom & democracy but we don’t defend them here.

 

So, we’re not allowed to discuss the slaughter in El Paso for example because it involves politics. Our nation’s social fabric is being torn apart and we’re supposed to sit silently by?

The inner Trump

 

The Politics of Resentment in Post-Literate America

 

 

 

We are living in a very dangerous time because just when we need a well-informed citizenry more desperately than perhaps any time before in our history, we have a moron in the oval office throwing gasoline on the fire.

“Christian” Supremacists new version of Morality & Ethics

 

Trump’s rallies i.e. his non-stop public spectacles staged to boost his ego on his never-ending carnival of self-aggrandizement, are resembling more & more Hitler’s speech at Nuremberg. Of course, Hitler focused primarily on the Jews who were German citizens while Trump’s venom & vitriol is more generalized i.e. Mexicans, Muslims, women, or anybody not a member of the Duck Dynasty Klan.

Fortress Amerika!

 

What really troubles my soul is that this centuries-old tactic of blaming the victims of the elite continues to be effective & obviously Trump’s “base,” has no historical memory. The automatons who worship the ground that Trump walks upon are completely oblivious to his blatant manipulation of them. How in the Hell can they find “common cause” with a supposed billionaire—who refuses to release his tax returns because they most likely reveal what a charlatan he is—who has screwed thousands of people who have worked for him?

Beware of Cults of Personality & Authoritarians!

 

I believe a key insight into this dreadful phenomenon lies in the politics of resentment. What do I mean by this term? Quite simply that what unites Trump’s fan club is a hatred & burning resentment towards all who aren’t like them i.e. poor, white, working class born in America people.

 

You see, all dictators, oligarchs, demagogues, etc. throughout history knew that the best way to distract their citizens from the ugly realities of their lives was to blame the “other.” And again, the “other” can be any group you choose i.e. Mexicans, Muslims, Jews, Blacks, gays, handicapped, etc.

The bigger the lie & the more often you repeat it, it becomes truth.

 

It seems to be almost axiomatic or reflexive for people to blame their fellow victims rather than the power elite who are actually the ones responsible for their deprivations. I have been observing & writing about this tragic state of affairs for decades now & I never will understand it. I guess it must be human nature to deny or ignore one’s own responsibility for not informing oneself & participating in the democratic process & to blame those even worse-off than yourself for your inability to feed your family, have adequate healthcare, put a roof over your family’s head, etc.?

 

I am continually baffled that my fellow citizens can’t seem to comprehend the obvious fact that it is the rich who pass things like NAFTA which rewards the corporations for closing down their plants in the U.S. & going overseas where they can pay workers far less than they have to in the U.S. i.e. minimum wage which is an employer’s way of saying that they’d pay you even less if they could but the law requires they pay at least the minimum wage (some rap artist pointed this out).

 

Naturally, but sadly, the overwhelming majority of Americans allow themselves to be buffeted back & forth like a cork floating in the high seas. The 1% own the mass media & have been manipulating public opinion for decades i.e. the liberal bias in the mass media—common sense tells us that those who own the media aren’t going to allow serious criticism of their propaganda to be heard on the very stations, magazines, radio, etc. they own. Why? Because this would threaten the very power structure that helps keep them in power.

The “Liberal Media”

 

And yet Donald, the Magnificent is a master at using the media to sell his brand i.e. himself, to the world. He got something like several billion dollars of free advertising as he campaigned to become president while Bernie Sanders received a small fraction of the media’s attention. Why? Because Trump is basically a “shock jock” and knows that the more outrageous, nasty, racist, etc. he is, the more attention he’ll get. And the kicker is, after getting so much free publicity from the national media, Trump turns on his benefactors & calls them “fake news,” etc. Where would Trump be if it weren’t for the so-called fake media?

the truth behind the Trump brand/logo  

 

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see Trump’s game plan, and his smug mug & Cheshire Cat trademark smirk says it all i.e. you really are a nation of rubes & oh so easily duped by my huckster rap. This is a good place to share a quote from the great Bertrand Russell with you;

 

“Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth — more than ruin, more even than death. Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible, thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habits; thought is anarchic and lawless, indifferent to authority, careless of the well-tried wisdom of the ages. Thought looks into the pit of hell and is not afraid … Thought is great and swift and free, the light of the world, and the chief glory of man.”

 

Take a few moments to really chew this thought over if you will. To my mind, this quote encapsulates the core of the problem we’re all facing whether we acknowledge it or not. As long as we remain apathetic or unwilling to expend the energy to inform ourselves, the rich & powerful will continue to have their boots on our necks.

 

If you expect to be treated fairly without being willing to do your homework i.e. inform yourself, you are asking for what never has been nor ever will be. All of human progress in terms of lifting up the lives of ordinary men & women has only come about due to serious & prolonged struggles against the wealthy. They clearly enjoy their status, privileges, & wealth and will not willingly or easily give these “perks” up.

 

And this is what I am talking about when I refer to “post-literate America.” For example, I allowed myself to get sucked into the Facebook world even though my gut told me from the beginning that Facebook was basically a forum for teenage girls. I can’t tell you how many thousands of hours I wasted on Facebook writing lengthy responses & essays on many of the critical issues facing us in today’s world only to get a rare reply of a sentence or two. And once emojis were introduced, I didn’t even get a sentence but more often than not, a happy face.

 

Do you seriously think we’re going to mount a serious revolution for our freedom with emojis? In other words, if we can’t even be bothered to take the time to write a few sentences to each other in camaraderie or support of one another, what chance do we have of making any progress?

 

A couple of years ago, it dawned on me that since we’re clearly such a materialistic society i.e. we only value those members of our society that can prove their “worth” by pointing to their wealth, material possessions, celebrity, etc., quantification seems to reign supreme. So, it occurred to me that I should perhaps attempt to quantify my knowledge? By-the-way, before I met my lovely wife, Jeri, I had several relationships with girls/women whom I loved deeply & whom I believe loved me deeply but they invariably ended because they were afraid that I wasn’t “ambitious” enough.

 

This reflects just a part of the high price I’ve paid over the years. I too used to believe that the word “ambition” solely referred to how much money a person was “worth.” Then it dawned on me, Aha! True, I’m not “ambitious” in the usual sense of wanting to become financially wealthy but I am ambitious as Hell when it comes to becoming as knowledgeable or as wise as I possibly can.

 

Conservatively, over the last 30 years, I have spent roughly 50,000 hours reading the classics & modern classics in history, politics, philosophy, literature, etc. & unlike Donny the Liar & Denier in Chief, I can back it up. I have collected approximately 10,000 books in my personal library & have made copious notes in several hundred of my books. I have listened to radio programs on politics, collected thousands of articles, written a couple hundred essays, many of which are 20 to 30 pages or more, written a couple thousand pages on two major projects so far, read magazine articles, etc.

 

In the notes I have made in the blank pages of my books, I either copy passages that I feel are important, verbatim or I paraphrase them & often write someone’s name whom I remember having an argument with about the subject or whom I would like to show the passage to. I have also developed my own, crude symbology of stars, hearts, triangles, etc. in an attempt to show the value of said passage.

 

I hope that you, my imaginary reader, believe me when I tell you that this isn’t merely me imitating the braggart in the White House but my attempt to establish my bonifides. Continuing on with the twin pillars of this essay i.e. the politics of resentment & post-literate America, there are countless studies, polls, etc. confirming how anti-intellectual America has become over the past 50 years & even further if you read the classic by Richard Hofstadter, “Anti-intellectualism in American Life.” I basically dissected this book because I went through it with a fine-tooth comb so-to-speak, twice.

 

I went through this American classic the second time because I used it as a sort of skeleton outline in my on-going magnum opus; Truth Against the World. This project has become a work of gargantuan proportions & I’ve broken it down into three separate books. I still have a lot more to add but the first book in this series is titled; “The Christian Fundamentalists War Against Secular Humanism.”

 

Speaking of which, these so-called “Christians” personify a major portion of Trump’s & America’s politics of resentment. In a nutshell, these faux “Christians” are resentful & angry that they aren’t accorded the power & prestige as a sort of American Taliban. And to prove just how hypocritical they are, how else can you explain the fact that they staunchly support & defend Trump who is the embodiment of the Seven Deadly Sins? In brief, they prove how shallow their “Christianity” is & how meaningless Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount” is to them.

 

We moved a lot as I was growing up but I always sought out & attended the local church wherever we went. I knew next to nothing about the differences between denominations. I simply enjoyed the experience & Sunday School. But somewhere around the age of 14 or 15, the hypocrisy just became too brazen. And at the risk of sounding grossly overly simplistic, I believe the Sermon on the Mount & the Commandment to do unto others as you’d have them do unto you, is all we need to practice.

 

Embarrassingly, we are known the world around as being one of the most illiterate nations on Earth, most notably among the so-called “advanced” nations. Many Americans openly brag about not having read a single book in the past year. Moreover, it’s become common knowledge that Trump won’t even bother to read the daily briefings that are so vital for the leader of the world’s most powerful nation.

 

Instead, Trump is noted for his watching television several hours per day & most conspicuously, “FOX News,” which any student of modern history knows should more accurately be referred to as America’s “Pravda.” (Russia’s version of the New York Times i.e. their paper of propaganda)

 

I must admit that I never cease to be amazed at the level of spectacular ignorance & utter inability to even formulate a single, coherent sentence by Trump. But somewhere deep inside I can’t help but wonder; Is this really a master act of deception on the part of Trump to distract us from his & his craven cronies consistent unraveling of our democracy?

 

In other words, is it humanly possible for someone to be so glaringly stupid in just about every sentence that comes out of his mouth?

 

In conclusion, I’d like to share with you a portion from a transcript of my favorite, alternative news station, “Democracy Now!” which I have been following for the past 20 years—nearly from its beginning. This is Wayne Barrett, who followed Trump’s infamous rise more thoroughly than any other journalist:

 

You know, he has made a career—when I say I don’t know why he’s never been prosecuted, maybe the prime time that he could have been prosecuted was at the time of his downfall in 1990 and ’91. Well, you know, the banks kept him alive, as he was too big to fail. So, they kept him alive. But I wrote in the book—he certainly didn’t sue when I said it—I didn’t say that he had made—submitted false financial statements to the bankers to get a billion dollars in personally guaranteed loans. I said he submitted fraudulent ones. Right? And I lay out a case for that in the book. He was engaged in completely defrauding the banks, and the banks knew it. OK? And they were giving him the loans anyway. So, they kept him alive. But even more so than that, the House Banking Committee wanted to do public hearings about it; the banks wouldn’t cooperate. The district attorney of Manhattan was a big friend of Donald’s. Donald was his second-biggest giver. Robert Morgenthau’s second-biggest giver was Donald Trump. Donald was the chairman of the Police Athletic League, which was Morgenthau’s biggest charity. So, he was extremely close. He hired—Andy Maloney was the U.S. attorney in the Eastern District. He hired Maloney’s brother. Right? Rudy Giuliani was the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, and we know how close they got. I wrote a whole story about how their relationship developed. I was at Rudy Giuliani’s first fundraiser when he decided to run for mayor, and there’s Donald at the main table. He’s the co-chair of the first Rudy Giuliani fundraiser for the mayorality in 1989. So, his relationships with prosecutors and the fact that the bankers—they were embarrassed by what they had done; they didn’t want any investigation of this. So, the combination of the two gave—gave them a pass—gave him a pass.

 

https://www.democracynow.org/2016/7/5/wayne_barrett_on_donald_trumps_broken

 

 

In brief, everything about Trump is a fraud and always has been. You could say that he is our greatest “flim-flam president.” And by “greatest,” I mean he represents the worst of the worst in terms of human qualities!

 

—Rob DeLoss, July 19, 2019 Gold Beach, Oregon

 

Addendum

 

Clearly in a “culture” as post-literate as ours & in which many Americans brag about not having read a single book in the past year, some even boast that they’ve never read a single book in their lives, it’s easy to manipulate their emotions as Trump obviously does. And willful ignorance & violence go hand in hand when people are looking to blame others for their misfortunes. Personally, I believe that Trump’s walking dead knows that it’s the rich who have fucked them but they don’t know where to focus their anger towards the rich or it just seems so impossible to take them on & that too is why they prefer to blame people of color.

 

Moreover, people seem to have a penchant for violence & chaos and Trump allows them to vent their anger on a regular basis which is satisfying for those of low I.Q. So, a rightful resentment toward the 1% is transferred on to the poorest victims of our society & they don’t have the power to fire you like your boss does.

 

Trump is the most audacious liar I’ve ever heard of & he even tells his zombie followers to not believe their own eyes or ears or any of the media but only to listen & believe his lies. And what is truly frightening is the fact that this dunce has the power to start a nuclear war & denies the reality of climate destruction. Trump hasn’t “drained the swamp,” but rather he is tearing down the structure of our government with every person he has appointed in his cabinet & etc. So, when your Social Security checks stop coming along with your pension checks, & etc., remember, you asked for it with your blind submission to that vile creature in the White House who I’m sure will be crying crocodile tears for you as you seek shelter on our mean streets!

 

Yep! The world-wide economic collapse of 2008 which crippled the world & from which we still haven’t fully recovered was largely due to deregulation of the financial markets & Trump is deregulating everything he can get his hands on so as to further enrich himself & his butt-buddies. Oh well?

What I imagine the inner “mind” of Trump to look like (Hieronymous Bosch)

The Christian Supremacists Pact with the Devil

 

 

Admittedly, my use of the word “Devil,” is sensationalistic but in today’s America, The National Enquirer appears to hold more sway than The New York Times with Trump automatons so this should appeal to their sensibilities?

 

Many of our fellow citizens have clearly fallen under the spell of the Charlatan in Chief & I feel sickened unto my soul at their blindness. And I sympathize with their righteous anger because I too, have been screwed-over countless times in my life—I’m 66 years old—by the government but even more so by the corporate giants which I refer to as the Corporate Cockroaches.

Trump defenders will undoubtedly spin this as proof of the witch-hunt against Trump

 

As far as I’m concerned, the key difference between myself & many, if not most, of Trump’s supporters is the fact that I have been paying serious attention to politics for well-over 30 years & I understand how the 1% who are truly running the world, have duped so many into believing it’s an elite cabal of liberals who are behind our troubles. (though there is an element of truth to this to some extent but the reality is it’s an amalgamation of greedy, self-interested forces, liberal, conservative, & numerous other perspectives)

 

If you’ll just take a brief survey of Western history, you’ll see the horrific history of what happened when the Church & the State worked together i.e. the individual got fucked royally (pun intended). And this is why our Founding Fathers were very clear about the importance of separating Church from State. Sadly, far too many Americans today either never learned the critical lessons of world history re: this matter or they simply don’t give a shit & are willingly ignorant on the subject?

substitute all the amoral/immoral acts of Trump for the word “Satan”

You see, my imaginary reader, when the power of the church i.e. Christian evangelicals & their steady encroachment into the halls of political power on the local, state, & federal levels over the decades, is united with the power of the government in the same spheres of influence & control over our lives, the overwhelming majority of citizen activist groups/organizations are steamrolled over.

 

Moreover, in today’s “connected” world via the power & scope of the Internet & the myriad so-called “social networks,” it’s very easy to spread fear, hate, & lies. And if we won’t, don’t, or can’t take the time to check out the validity of the claims by those trying to sucker us into their web of deceit, we become just more cannon-fodder for the morally bankrupt.

 

Believe it or not my friend, I do wish that I could offer you a simple method or answer to this complex state of affairs but unlike the con-man in the oval office, I won’t insult your intelligence as he does day-in & day-out. Sadly, in this crazy world of ours where the quantity of our “wealth” is just about the only thing that matters when it comes to our public “influence,” I am only wealthy in terms of the amount of time, energy, & love I have expended in my life-long pursuit of knowledge.

 

And yeah, I know that some of you, especially you die-hard Trump fans, will dismiss me as just another elitist & were this not so absurd, it’d be amusing. Yeah, me the elitist? Single parent (my mom), multiple cruel step-dads/mom’s boyfriends, drunkenness & violence throughout, piss-poor public schools, hundreds of Mickey Mouse dead-end jobs in factories, pumping gas, flipping burgers, etc. , standing up to the U.S. Army & refusing to allow them to send me to Vietnam even though they wanted to make me an officer, scoring at the 11th grade, sixth month level in reading when in the sixth grade but never given the opportunity or the encouragement to rise to my intellectual abilities. Yep! Obviously, I am just another one of the elitists that the humble Trump detests.

a dear friend who helped me emotionally weather the storm while AWOL from the U.S. Army

 

So, you decide for yourself, are you going to use your “common sense” which so many of our fellow working-class citizens love to proclaim, or are you going to continue to believe the perhaps billionaire—we’ll never know for sure because he’ll never release his tax returns—or is there the slightest possibility that I could be telling you straight-up?

“Christian” Supremacists new version of Morality & Ethics

 

Sorry if I get side-tracked & veer off course a bit but like our recently anointed Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh, I too like beer & I’m drinking beer as I write this. Yeah, there used to be a modicum of decorum, civility, or just simple decency but with the illegal insertion of Trump as the symbolic head of our government, all that has vanished out the window & the bar has been lowered to such an extent, that it’s about as difficult to step-over that “bar” as it’d be to step over the proverbial line in the sand.

 

I mean, seriously people? A president who brags about grabbing women’s pussies & getting away with it & a supreme court judge who was rammed-through the confirmation process under a very dark cloud of not being that different from the commander-in-chief when it comes to matters of morality? To say nothing of the assorted other despicable excuses for human beings that made up the Trump cabinet & keep getting replaced by more of the same.

 

How any of these self-proclaimed “Christian Supremacists,” or politicians or corporate spokesmen, etc. have the audacity to stand-up in front of television cameras on the world stage & defend this cabal of amoral human cockroaches, defies incredulity.

 

I stopped calling myself a Christian when I was about 14 years old. The hypocrisy just became all too obvious & in hindsight, I am glad that I did because I can proudly disassociate myself from all those wolves in sheep’s clothing who kiss Trump’s feet like spineless slugs.

 

In a nutshell my imaginary reader, the powers that be, the power elite, the status quo, or however you may care to refer to them, have used a tried but true strategy of divide & conquer. Yeah, this is a military term & tactic and is very appropriate because they, the 1%, have been conducting class warfare against the rest of us throughout recorded history.

 

Of course, they deny this vehemently & get all bent out of shape, stand up on their hind-legs spitting & foaming at the mouth in self-righteous indignation whenever accused of this. And it doesn’t take much effort to see the three clubs they wield with usual success i.e. God, Guns, & Gays. Trump merely added Mexicans & Muslims to the recipe & roughly a third of our fellow citizens swallowed the poison whole.

 

And even though I gave-up on Christianity as it is preached in most of America’s churches & not practiced in public & certainly not in politics, I can remember my Sunday School lessons like Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount.” In my agnostic/atheist humble opinion, anyone who has a kind heart can see that the Beatitudes summed Christianity up in a nutshell and oh, so beautifully.

What part don’t you understand?

 

Yet it never ceases to amaze me & depress me at the same time how many of these “Christian” fundamentalists, Dominionists, evangelicals, white supremacists, Klansmen, Neo-Nazis, Alt Right, etc. seem to honestly believe that they are Christians?

 

I’ve never really been that much of a “pot-head,” and in fact, many of my friends over the years have been amused & amazed at how long a quarter ounce of pot can last me i.e. usually a year or longer. But I am proud to identify myself as an old hippie because it was very simple, and yeah, naïve of us but we basically believed in peace, love, & dope (the natural dope such as pot, peyote, mescaline that wasn’t adulterated by greedy & unscrupulous drug dealers).

 

We viewed “drugs” as a tool to help in our enlightenment & we cared about one another, the environment, justice, equality, freedom, truth, etc. —not that different from what our founding fathers believed in & tried to establish in our Constitution & our form of government (and yeah, I am aware of the hypocrisies & contradictions).

 

I for one, would love to see a Renaissance of those idealistic values of the hippies, the student protestors, the dope smokers, the non-conformists, the radicals, the wanderers of the 1960s and I am 100% in favor of the proposed “Green New Deal” that is drawing more & more of us like the Pied Piper of Hamlin towards a Shangri-La, a Paradise Lost. Excuse me, it’s the literature major in me. But what do we have nowadays, if not  our dreams?

 

“Reality T.V.,” which gave us the likes of Trump and the glorification of lie, cheat, steal, backstab, whatever it takes to win. Are these the values of Jesus? And how in the hell can Mike Pence stand up there next to Trump & believe he’s still a Christian? No, it’s as clear as the nose on your face, these faux Christians will & have sold their souls and any semblance of decency they may have had. Why?

 

Because of their lust for power. They are every bit as fanatical as the worst of the “Muslims” who claim to be Muslim but commit terrorist attacks. And like those phony “Muslims,” many of the American Taliban, gladly commit their own versions of domestic terrorism in the name of their god, who more honesty should be acknowledged as the Anti-Christ.

 

Isn’t this a pitiful state of affairs when an avowed non-Christian has to remind you “Christians” that you’re not behaving very Christ-like? I deliberately used the term “devil” in the title of this essay because to me, the words “devil,” “Satan,” “Lucifer,” etc. are really synonyms for evil and evil in my book is all that hurts, denigrates, physically attacks, humiliates, rejects, attempts to silence, shames, judges others, fears, intimidates, discourages, etc.

 

I could go on and on and on but I believe my point is clear? I believe down to the marrow of my bones that all of us who clearly have love for our fellow human beings in our hearts, are the truly righteous. I don’t want to rule over others & I sure as Hell don’t & won’t let anyone rule over me though I do have to appear to play along with this evil system.

 

In conclusion my friend, there is so much more that unites us than divides us. These divisions are grossly exaggerated & are used by the 1% to keep us divided so they can more easily control us. Why? Quite simply, for the wealth of the world. We have been indoctrinated our entire lives—for me, since 1952—into believing that there was a vast conspiracy of evildoers out to enslave us or kill us i.e. the Communists, the international drug cartels, and currently, terrorists.

 

And no, I’m not denying the existence of nor the destructiveness of these forces but, if you’ll do a bit of research, you’ll discover that each of these bogey-men have been used to keep us in line & paying our taxes, and dying or being maimed in the perpetual war system that has existed my whole life. Communist Russia has/had something like seven countries under its “control.” America has over 900 military bases around the world & who knows how many secret bases? Don’t believe me, check out Chalmers Johnson for yourself. America has been financially supporting, training the secret police of dictators, & often sending in our special forces & our regular army to back bloody dictators for decades.

 

Too much to swallow? Check out Major General Smedley F. Butler of the U.S.M.C. (United States Marine Corps) if you think me full of shit and spend just ten minutes reading his quotes re:  his tenure. And here’s probably the most bitter pill for you to swallow? America, manipulated by the transnational corporations that President Eisenhower warned us about in his farewell address i.e. Beware the Military-Industrial Complex—he wanted to include Congress in this unholy alliance but was persuaded to leave it out.

 

The data, the information, the knowledge, the truth, the wisdom is all available for any who seriously care & are willing to search for it for themselves. I have spent conservatively, 50,000 hours in my pursuit and no, this doesn’t mean that I have the corner on the truth but it does mean, that I am light-years ahead of fuckin’ cold-blooded mercenaries like Trump!

 

Rob DeLoss, Trinidad, CA (April 19, 2019)

The 1%’s Idea of “Choices”

 

 

An acquaintance of mine recently brought up the issue of “choices” again & basically said that I am in the situation I’m in because of the “choices” I’ve made in my life. This is my rebuttal, and instead of going into the centuries-old debate of “free will” vs. “determinism” and nature vs. nurture, I’m going to respond in my own, straight-forward manner.

 

I was going to title this essay, “Free Will and the Free Market,” but decided that would be perhaps too pedantic & too complex a topic to explore. Besides, those who claim to believe in the “free market,” have obviously already drunk the Kool-Aid of crony capitalism & its house of cards.

Get it?

 

Let me start by acknowledging that I don’t delude myself & think that I’m going to persuade any readers of this essay to reject the edifice upon which they’ve built their lives. No, this is merely the voice of a lone wolf howling in the wilderness of this shallow society.

 

You may think it extremely arrogant or audacious of me but I claim to speak for the downtrodden like myself, who’ve been screwed by this rigged-system their whole lives. Yet the 1% have succeeded to an astounding degree in convincing us that we are “losers” (one of Trump’s favorite slurs) because of our own “shortcomings.”

 

Yep! We are supposed to accept full responsibility for everything from losing a perhaps once, decent paying job & the health insurance we once had, our homes because we fell for those predatory lenders’ scams, our life savings because again, we weren’t smart enough to not trust our financial advisers who assured us that our investments were secure & guaranteed, etc.

 

Just poor choices on our parts. Too bad, too sad! But somehow, the rich always seem to come out on top? Yeah, miraculously the 1% seem to usually have the insider knowledge that not only protects their fortunes but even enables them to profit when the rest of us fail? It couldn’t be perhaps that because they have the wealth & power to influence & control the legislators who write the laws, is why they rarely pay for poor “choices,” could it?

 

Of course not! This is a meritocracy, right? Haven’t we been told all the way through our public education that if we work hard, follow the rules, & don’t rock the boat, we too can become rich & successful? Gee? I wonder where such “wisdom” originated? Well, that’s for another essay.

 

Remember! We’re a class-less society i.e. we don’t recognize or rather, we don’t acknowledge that there are different “classes” in America & we’re all equal. But don’t try driving in Beverly Hills, especially if you happen to be Black. Of course, Trump has shown the world what a truly classless person he is & represents the real America behind the veil like in the Wizard of Oz.

Yeah, as spiritually sick as Trump makes me, I’m actually glad that he’s up there on the world’s stage because there’s no hiding or denying just how rotten to the core this neo-liberal assault has been with Trump behind the desk in the oval office. And what has been the 1%’s response to this greedy, self-aggrandizing moron’s words & actions? Mostly mute because the Duck Dynasty’s Klansman has been a godsend to their continued looting of the federal treasury.

 

I may be veering a bit off topic here and could go into the “choices” that brought us this most vile, despicable, & craven mercenary but that too, is another topic for future exploration. You see, my imaginary reader, the concept of “choice” is thrown out by the rich whenever any of us, the peasants, dare to complain about “our lot in life.” This is their armor, their shield when attacked for their greed, selfishness, & the destruction they have wreaked in their blind pursuit of profit i.e. if we are unhappy with our life situations, we only have ourselves to blame for the poor choices we have made along the way.

 

Yep! If we accept this rationale of “choices,” then Trump has clearly made all the right choices in his career i.e. never admit guilt or wrongdoing, cheat/defraud thousands if not tens of thousands of employees, contractors, etc. always attack & never apologize, borrow & not repay banks, bribe city officials for permits for buildings & casinos and not honor the contracts, launder money for mafia figures, beg for loans from Russian mafia i.e. Russian government officials, and build his political career with a vicious fear & hate campaign that he never stops using to manipulate the gullible & willingly ignorant who believe in him.

clearly stuck in adolescence for life

 

But if you happen to be a simple person who believes in doing unto others as you’d have them do unto you, you are a sitting duck for the 1% who have no such moral qualms. Yes, they too made their choices & we see the consequences of their choices in the tabloids yet we continue to ignore these glaring lessons of what befalls the greedy & the heartless?

It’s really quite clear

 

Let me ask you this my friends; Did we who were raised by a single parent, usually our mothers, “choose” this? Or did we who were abused by cruel stepfathers from birth to adolescence have a say? Did we who were forced to attend whatever public school which happened to be nearby, have a choice in the academic curriculum or quality of said curriculum?

 

Did we, who went hungry at times in our childhoods, have a choice regarding whether we wanted to eat or not? Did we have a choice when it came to being brought up in a drunken & violent home? Or whether we had a decent roof over our heads, two loving parents, encouragement, cultural exposure, etc.?

Iconic pic of woman who made “poor choices” during the “Great Depression”

 

Were we free from the psychological as well as the physical harm inflicted upon us by cruel, unloving step-dads & live-in boyfriends of our mothers? Did we have a choice when it came to the fact that we never even met our biological fathers?

 

Did we have a choice when it came to being mocked, ridiculed, & humiliated every time we played sports as we grew up & our eyes crossed and our fellow students were so merciless & cruel?

 

Did we have a choice in being not only the eldest in our families but also amongst all our cousins & being forced to protect them but had no one to protect or defend us? Did we have a choice when it came to enjoying a “normal” childhood or adolescence?

 

Or what about the life or death choice of being in the military during the Vietnam war? Did we have a choice when it came to the lottery & the fact that our birth date set our fate? Did we have a choice of a college deferment when we didn’t even know of such an option? Moreover, was this an option if you didn’t have a rich daddy like the 1% who guaranteed your college tuition?

a dear friend who helped me emotionally weather the storm while AWOL

 

Remember, Donny the Duck’s daddy bribed a doctor to save Donny by claiming he had bone-spurs & now he struts the world-stage like he’s the most patriotic American there ever was. Guess he wasn’t forced into making that choice of serving? Guess the fact that a professor of mine suggested that I should be attending college at Stanford University but the fact that I was having trouble just paying for tuition at California State University at Long Beach, was just another poor choice on my part?

 

Furthermore, the 1% don’t have to worry about making poor choices or dumb mistakes when they work for daddy because they’re not going to be fired. How often are the children of the elite fired from any position they’ve ever held, no matter how briefly? Yeah, so much for meritocracy, equality, level playing field and all the other bullshit propaganda we’ve been spoon-fed our entire lives!

 

Do the children of the elite ever have to suffer the insults, degradation, & daily humiliation inflicted upon them by “superiors” who are clearly inferior in every way? Do they have to make a “choice” between eating or quitting and maintaining some semblance of self-respect? Do the elite have to refrain from the overwhelming desire to smash their supervisors’ faces to a pulp?

 

Has this so-called “power elite” ever been forced to work at jobs they knew were very dangerous i.e. handling toxic chemicals, driving trucks with faulty brakes, etc.  yet when they quit, they were labeled “losers,” unable to hold down a job. Have they ever known what it feels like to have all these pejorative terms applied to them like that crimson A sewn onto Hester Prim’s blouse for life?

 

And more insulting & unbearable than all these personal insults is the fact that I have spent my life in the continual pursuit of knowledge, truth, & wisdom yet am often forced to almost beg for some minimum wage “job.” Does this all stem from a series of poor “choices?” If you still believe that it does, it reveals you for who you are i.e. a member of the corporate cockroach class who should be stamped-out for humanity’s sake as well as for Mother Earth’s well-being.

 

Addendum

 

Isn’t it curious that when questioned about the legitimacy of their wealth, the overwhelming majority of the elite believe they rightfully deserve it because of the family they were born into or that they have “worked” so hard for it? And those of us who “begrudge” them their wealth are just jealous, lazy, not qualified, or have made “poor choices” in life.

Trump’s version of the Palace of Versailles from a Duck Dynasty perspective

 

Yeah, “poor choices” that the rich can relate to like choosing between going hungry & stealing; like quitting a dangerous job where you know you’re risking your life for minimum wage & becoming just another sad statistic or being broke again.

 

Bottom-line, you who have been fucked-over by life, often as the result of the elite’s policies & practices had & have about as much “choice” in terms of what course your lives follow as those sheltered “elite” bastards had in being born with the proverbial silver spoons in their mouths. So, don’t you buy their bullshit argument that it’s your “deficiencies” that are the cause, because if you do, you are only playing into their hands & blaming yourselves (and no, this isn’t to say that some of us aren’t guilty of laziness, etc.) rather than them, the want to be Masters of the Universe.

 

There is one historical fact that gives me hope & some sense of consolation, the French Revolution. Naturally, the powers that be will dismiss my arguments as being that of just another “loser.” Yeah, those of us who dare to stand up on our hind-legs & howl against the horrific injustices of this world are dismissed as “whiners,” apologists, losers, etc. etc. etc. because it requires honest & serious mental effort to refute my accusations.

the “peasants” will only take being fucked for so long, so 1% ers, be aware!

 

This is clearly such an easy cop-out that it is disingenuous at best & reflects a mind that is incapable of fair & logical argument.

 

The sad & cruel irony in today’s America is that Trump has succeeded to such an extent in duping his cult of the Walking Dead into believing the true enemy of the state are his fellow elite, who profit from the government subsidies/protections just as he has but that he is magically separate from it. Yep! Donald the Dick-head, the pussy-grabber, the fraudulent billionaire, the clearly senile & vile creature from the Black Lagoon ruling over the swamp lizards of Congress, has muddied the waters to such an extent that nobody knows what the future holds for America.

 

And like a cheap magician, Trump distracts us by waving his tiny hands, one hand pointed at the “enemy of the state” i.e. the press (because they do their job of informing us to some extent) while his other hand, wreaks havoc on our Constitution and our semblance of a democracy.

The Swine in Chief with his tiny fingers on the nuclear trigger. Yeah, be afraid, be very afraid!

 

Here’s a different perspective on the big picture if you care to expand your understanding? I dissected this book years ago & it gave me great comfort in its reassurance that I wasn’t crazy.  https://thesunmagazine.org/issues/487/em-from-em-br-we-ve-had-a-hundred-years-of-psychotherapy-an

 

—Rob DeLoss, Trinidad, CA (a couple of weeks before escape from this phony paradise of wanna-be hippies)  April 16, 2019

Yeah, you can dismiss me & my worries with trite comments like; We haven’t blown ourselves up yet but, the simple reality that we have come within seconds of nuclear exchange many times over the course of my life (1952 to the present) shouldn’t give any rational human being any comfort i.e. it’s mostly been due to sheer dumb luck.
 

 

My Love

My Love,

 

From the moment I laid eyes on you as you walked across the room in that bar where we met, my soul recognized you and my spirit soared.

 

It was like kismet and so appropriate that one of the songs we danced to that night was “With You I’m Born Again” by Billy Preston & Syreeta.

It was like a fairy tale come true and you were my princess. And that’s why I kissed your hand instead of your lips as we said goodbye.

 

I knew after the couple of hours that we’d spent dancing and talking that first night that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with you. You were the classiest lady I had ever met. Your poise, style, and grace were like a magnet that drew me instantly to you.

 

And the very next day on our first date, we went to the beach to fly your kite. At the end of the day, you asked me if I’d like to smoke some pot & we went back to your apt. and before long we made love for the first time & I spent the night with you and felt right at home. I believe we spent that first weekend together hardly getting out of bed & for the next four years, maybe only two or three nights passed in which we didn’t spend the night together.

long weekend getaway to Monterey

 

I know that I scared you when I told you at some point within our first four months together that you were the kind of woman I’d like to marry. I had never said this to a girl or a woman before but I wanted you to know just how deeply I cared for you. We had both been burned/hurt by previous lovers & you were a little gun-shy to commit. But I became jealous when once in a while, one of your old boyfriends would call you. You kept saying that we were just friends & that hurt my feelings so after about four months of us spending every night together, I found the courage to express my feelings.

 

I was scared to death that I might scare you away because I guess you could say that I gave you an ultimatum of sorts? I told you that your actions made a liar out of you i.e. if we were only friends, then why did we spend every night together. I said that it’d be easier to call it quits right then & there rather than go on pretending we were only friends. I wanted you to acknowledge that we were boyfriend & girlfriend. And I was sweating bullets that I might chase you away with this confrontation.

 

To my great relief, you agreed that from then on, we were a couple & as I recall, it wasn’t long after that you moved in with me because my apt. was larger & there was no point in maintaining two apts. when we were together every night.

 

Those first four years of our living together were without a doubt, the best years of my life. I often referred to you as my Rock of Gibraltar & that used to bother you. I couldn’t understand why? I meant it as a high compliment in that your consistency or the stability of your love for me gave me great strength & solace. But I think you may have thought that I was saying that you were like a chain around my neck or weighing me down?

one of my favorite pics of Jeri because she was stoned (which was rare) & obviously so cute!

 

You see my love, before I met you, my life had been mostly chaotic & I never knew an unwavering love such as yours. My family history was ugly & often unpredictable or insecure. Because you loved me & believed in me, my self-confidence grew and I made great strides in my pursuit of a bachelor’s degree in English literature, I didn’t quit jobs so easily as I had in the past, and I began to realize that I was equal to & in some respects, superior to others who used to treat me as an inferior. I began to sit in the front row of many of my classes & I’d go to professors’ office hours just to engage in stimulating conversation.

I taught an ESL class right across the hall from Jeri’s special ed class

 

A few of my professors were very complimentary & this too increased my confidence level to the point that I began to feel worthy of becoming a teacher & a writer. And because you loved me but were secure in our love & therefore didn’t try to control me, I never felt trapped and only loved you that much more.

 

I was so proud of all your accomplishments & talents and I still am to this day & often brag about your artistic gifts. About the only joy I feel these days, months, & years since you’ve gone from this physical plane, is when I’m writing or working on some project to honor you. I love having pieces of your art projects around me in my trailer & the rare opportunities when I have a visitor whom I can show your talents to.

Jeri doing her thing on our honeymoon at a friend’s house in Zurich

 

You see my love, I know to the marrow of my bones that I wouldn’t have become a teacher or a writer were it not for your profound love for me, or at least not nearly as soon as I did with you in my corner? And I believe that the longer we lived together, the more fine-tuned our spirits became to one another.

 

This intuition hit me like a sledgehammer one morning when we were out to breakfast at some restaurant in Portland, Oregon where we had moved to in 1984. The only time the subject of marriage had ever come up between us was that comment I had made to you within the first four months of our being together re: you’re the kind of woman I’d like to marry someday. You said nothing in response to this & as I said, the subject never came up again. But four years later at that restaurant & over breakfast one morning you said; “Let’s do something crazy…” and I interrupted you & finished your sentence with; let’s go look at wedding rings.

in our apt. in Sellwood area of Portland (sorry for poor pic quality but love the memory/feeling)

 

I believe that we were both surprised but not really because we both sensed that it was time to take the plunge so-to-speak and tie the knot. This was another sign that you and me were kindred spirits destined to be together throughout eternity. And I have often pinched myself over the many years we’ve loved one another because I couldn’t & still can’t believe my great good fortune at having met you, lived & loved you, and gone through so much together. Now, our love has migrated to the higher realms that sages & saints have sought to describe over the centuries.

riding the rails on our honeymoon in Europe

 

And when I’m thinking of you & remembering these feelings & experiences that we shared, I am not alone, and I am not sad. I believe that my subconscious doesn’t allow me to see your face clearly in my dreams because it fears that I may not want to wake? I forget how long it was after your passing, maybe just a few months? But the clearest image I had of you in a dream was of you sitting alone in a booth across the room from where I was sitting. You had a sort of Mona Lisa smile on your face & you exuded a calm that caused me to feel calm as well. It was like you were telling me all was well without even speaking, just looking at me in such a loving & reassuring way.

a reflection of Jeri’s spirit

 

I believe that this letter to you my love may be a feeble attempt on my part to remind & reassure me that we will indeed be together again on another level of consciousness or however you want to describe it. I feel your presence to some extent, most of the time but the physical me longs so deeply to touch & caress you so desperately that I sometimes feel my heart is going to burst right through my chest.

a sense of Jeri’s presence

 

I search for signs, for insights, for reassurances, for proof that we’ll reunite somewhere & sometime. Part of me wishes that I was a religious person & thinks that if only I had that spiritual certainty that so many of them seem to have, it would lift this sadness, this blanket of depression that rarely leaves my shoulders.

 

I desperately long for certainty but I can’t or perhaps it’s that I refuse to lie to myself on such a matter? My character was formed decades ago & I believe as some of the ancient philosophers did i.e. we can’t alter who we are deep down inside. If I did try to deceive myself, it would be a betrayal not only to myself but to Jeri’s memory and all that I hold sacred i.e. only a pure heart is worthy of the occasional glimpses of true beauty & wisdom.

 

And I know that one of the things you loved me for was my sincerity & my commitment to my pursuit of truth, justice, fairness, equality, wisdom, & peace. If I betray what I’ve claimed to believe in my whole life, I will not only dishonor myself, I will betray your love for me honey. This is too high a price to pay for an illusionary sense of peace & I know that I must remain constant to my guiding star, my guardian angel, you my love.

 

As I plumb the core of my being in search of signs of how to connect with you on levels I can’t even comprehend yet, bits & pieces come into view. For example, I was once blessed to have experienced a truly cosmic consciousness glimpse into another level of being that most people would instantly dismiss as fantasy or the product of an overactive imagination.

 

Those doubters don’t bother me one iota because you know that night we took acid & had such a wonderful experience in the confines of your apt. The “trip” that gives me the greatest comfort or reassurance that this veil of “reality” is but a sham, a façade of the deeper & truer reality that only the really healthy acid trip can give us, was the time when I took acid with a friend at one of our volleyball games.

our trip to Disneyland for Ryan

 

And yeah, many, if not most, especially those who have never even taken acid, will dismiss my words as the lunacy of an old hippie who perhaps took too many acid trips. Well, they couldn’t be more wrong if they attempted to do so. I may have dropped acid a dozen times in my 66 years & I have talked several people down from “bad acid trips,” because of my calming reassurance & the respect I have earned over the years from my old friends when I was much younger.

 

This particular “trip” is still as vivid in my memory as if it had happened yesterday. Here’s an overview of my memory of this wonderful experience my sweet love, the greatest love I’ve ever known or shall know.

 

My friends & I played volleyball nearly every Sunday for close to 12 years & we were very competitive but this particular day when I dropped acid with my friend, Danny Hernandez, after I came on to the acid, there wasn’t an ounce of competitiveness in my body or spirit. And it was a remarkable day because it was atypical in that there were many strangers we’d never played against before. We had enough players to make probably seven or eight teams & several of our new friends had their families with them i.e. wives & children. We had kegs of beer, and we were barbecuing & having a fantastic time. This was before I met you honey and how I wish you could’ve been there.

cooling off on a hot summer day

 

You see honey, as I told you the night that we dropped acid at your apt., we were very fortunate in that we got some good acid that wasn’t cut with speed or other harmful ingredients that often happens. When this tab of acid that Danny gave me hit me, I knew a sense of peace & bliss that I have never experienced before or after this day.

 

Well, perhaps I’m overstating it a bit? Because I recall some moments when you, my love, and me & our son would wake in the morning in our bed and that joy was pretty comparable to this experience I’m trying to describe.

our home in North Hollywood

 

I was sitting on the bench of a picnic table when the full force of the acid came over me. I slowly began to feel connected to every blade of grass, every leaf on every tree, the trees surrounding us, the earth, the sky, the bench I was sitting on, every person who was present, & to all of humanity. This sense of connection extended to the physical, the emotional, the spiritual, the intellectual levels we all have. Maybe even on a sub-atomic particle level? There was no separation between all things human & inanimate & I sensed that it was all perfectly natural & it didn’t scare me or even seem worthy of mention.

 

Several toddlers & young children were playing on the ground in front of me & I enjoyed their presence and even though I never uttered a word to them, some of the children & me looked into each other’s eyes and it felt like we were communicating on some profound level.

Jeri & her aunt in park near our home in Portland

 

I remember that a couple of my friends were getting very angry with one another & I sensed that they might get in a fight so I simply walked over & said something—I can’t recall my words but probably something like maybe Gandhi or Martin Luther King might have said—and they stopped arguing. I then returned to my picnic table.

 

I also remember Danny’s brother, Fred, who was a friend of mine at the time, came over because he was concerned that I was having a bad trip. But I wasn’t having a bad trip and felt completely at ease with the negative as well as the positive in this world. Fred said something to the effect of “Don’t be depressed Rob.” My reply was something like; Depression is like a long, dark tunnel and you simply have to wade through it until you come out on the other side.

 

I’m sharing this memory with you my love because I believe it may be another piece of the puzzle which when completed, will reveal the truth that we never lose one another, we just slip away sometimes for awhile into other rooms or levels of existence but we are in fact, always with our loved ones & that you, my love, are looking over me & protecting me from my darker impulses.

Xmas at my mom’s house in Buena Park

 

I also believe that you, Jeri, are now my guardian angel & just continuing on in your protection of me as you did when we were on this same plane together. A year ago, I was towing my 5th wheel over the mountains between Redding, CA and Eureka, CA on the coast. I was coming down a steep section of the road and my brakes went out completely.

It was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life & comparable to the times I almost drowned, etc. It all happened so fast that I have no way of knowing whether it was a matter of minutes or seconds? All I know is that I was flying downhill with no brakes & trying desperately to maintain control over the steering. I didn’t dare take my eyes off the road not even for a split second to check my speed. I sensed that I was doing over 50 or 60 m.p.h. but again, had no idea of my actual speed. The only thing that kept running through my brain was; My God! I’m going to come to one of those 30 mile an hour curves and go straight over a cliff. I was praying —yes, situations like this will make an instant convert of you—that I’d come to an incline and begin to slow down & hopefully find a place where I could pull over & manage somehow to stop.

I was in a serious bicycle accident & Jeri came to my rescue

 

Many, if not most, will claim that it was God who saved them from dying in similar circumstances but I prefer to claim that it was you, my love, who protected me on that fateful day. I believe that we are all here on Earth to serve some purpose, most often unknown to us. And until we have served that purpose, we must fumble in the darkness. And I won’t be free to join you my love, until I have completed whatever it is I’m supposed to do. In the meantime, I will continue to remind the world of your loving contributions towards making this planet a better place to live.

 

My darling, you simply moved on to a higher plane of our spiritual existence because of all your hard work as a special education teacher. I haven’t completed my work yet because I’ve always lacked your self-discipline and mind-boggling work ethic. And you were a fantastic role-model who inspired me greatly but clearly, I didn’t or wasn’t capable of learning as quickly as you.

the hardest working teacher I’ve ever known & yes, I am biased!

 

You see baby, perhaps because of the emotional damage I experienced as I was growing up, I’ve had to learn a lot of life’s hardest lessons the hard way? I am a very slow learner in some regards & although I wish it weren’t so, there’s no sense denying my shortcomings.

 

But on the other hand, some of the negativity that touched my life as a young boy growing up, also fine-tuned my sensitivity or my antennae which warns me when dangerous situations or dangerous people are near. And to be honest with you my love, I am not really sure as to whether I’m a good man or a bad man who is simply good at deceiving himself and others?

 

Perhaps you can show me the truth about myself from this extraordinary experience I had several years before your passing?

Ryan’s bar mitzvah

 

You and I were separated & I had taken to the open road yet again. I was making my way down the Oregon coast in our old VW van and stopped to spend the night at Cape Blanco, a beautiful state park with a lighthouse. I had a campfire going and had drunk several beers & smoked a little pot, I believe?

 

I was mostly a skeptic of much of the paranormal claims regarding ghosts, Big Foot, etc. but on this particular night as I was seated next to my campfire, all of a sudden, I got the scariest feeling that there was some evil presence lurking in the trees around me. Now, I am well aware of the psychological assertion that when we are confronted with a perceived dangerous situation, we basically either stand & fight or we run for safety.

 

And for whatever reason or combination of factors, my usual reaction when I sense danger, is to fight not to run. I don’t say this honey to brag but simply to state the facts of my personal history. Some may choose to dismiss this story as the product of a drunken idiot & I’ll be the first to admit, though not proudly, I have experienced many drunken, blackouts in my time but during those episodes, I don’t remember hardly anything & often, nothing. Yet on this occasion, I remember every detail only too vividly.

 

I remember the sensation of the hair on the back of my neck standing on end. I recall being on the brink of full-on panic or a paralyzing terror. And in this state of mind, rational or logical thought immediately goes right out the window. I picked up my baseball bat in one hand & held my flashlight in my other hand and I strode vigorously around my campfire like this for several minutes perhaps?

 

Moreover, in maybe an inverse proportion to my fear, I put on a false face of bravado and I decided to confront my imaginary demons head-on. So, with my wooden baseball bat in one hand & my flashlight in the other, I headed down the narrow asphalt road to the beach.

As I got nearer to the beach, there was a row of trees on both sides of the road & they leaned over towards one another forming a sort of canopy that I walked under. And I remember thinking or feeling like I was walking into the mouth of a monster. I still had my bat in one hand & my flashlight in the other and when I reached the end of the road, there were huge driftwood logs scattered everywhere.

 

Some voice somewhere deep within me said; You’d better get out of here Rob; your dumbass may slip & fall on one of these logs and knock your ass out. I listened and made my way back to my campsite. I was still so scared that I slept inside my van rather than outside in my tent and when I awoke the next day, I threw all my gear into my van and got out of there as rapidly as possible.

 

A few years later, I was at one of the local pubs near your home Jeri and somehow the topic came up re: Cape Blanco and the bartender told me that there was a rumor that a group of white men had slaughtered a group of Native Americans there at Cape Blanco and that legend has it that their spirits haunt the woods around there.

 

I wondered if perhaps these spirits knew that I was not like those murderous whites who had killed them & maybe they admired my courage (false courage) in my strutting around my campfire with baseball bat & flashlight in hand and perhaps that’s why they showed me some mercy?

she’s watching over me

 

I brought this up my love because maybe it too is a sign that I do indeed possess a sixth sense if-you-will and this was yet more proof that there are indeed realms beyond our perception that give us glimpses of the otherworld?

 

In conclusion, all these factors and many more which I have yet to learn of, persuade me that we are only aware of the surface of the great mysteries that surround us. I recall learning many years ago that geniuses only use about 5% to 10% of their brain’s potential.

 

And it dawned on me that maybe we all have hidden powers that we’re not even aware of but sometimes when we’re in extreme crisis situations, these powers kick in on their own? Anyway, I will continue to be skeptical but at the same time, I will remain open to these possibilities and my heart & soul tell me that you are waiting just around the corner for me.

the path to Jeri

 

I know that I will find you again my love, please be patient and know that I will never stop searching for you baby. The dream of finding you is what keeps the candle inside me lit! I am waiting with baited-breath to kiss you again & hold you in my loving arms. I swear on all that is holy to me to never stop until we are reunited.

Nature’s beauty & power which we are one with

Namaste

 

P.S.  To borrow a few lines from a couple of beautiful songs that help to convey the depth of my feelings for my lost love;

If I Could Be Where You Are

 

Where are you this moment?

Only in my dreams.

You’re missing, but you’re always

A heartbeat from me.

I’m lost now without you,

I don’t know where you are.

I keep watching, I keep hoping,

But time keeps us apart

 

Is there a way I can find you,

is there a sign I should know,

is there a road I could follow

to bring you back home?

 

Winter lies before me,

now you’re so far away.

In the darkness of my dreaming,

the light of you will stay.

 

If I could be close beside you,

If I could be where you are,

If I could reach out and touch you

and bring you back home.

is there a way I can find you,

is there a sign I should know,

is there a road I could follow,

to bring you back home to me?

 

And the wondrously ethereal song from the movie; “The Last of the Mohicans”

I Will Find You

 

Hope is your survival

A captive path I lead

 

No matter where you go

I will find you

If it takes a long long time

No matter where you go

I will find you

If it takes a thousand years

No matter where you goI will find youIn the place with no frontiersNo matter where you goI will find youIf it takes a thousand years

 

“According to Greek mythology, humans were originally created with four arms, four legs and a head with two faces. Fearing their power, Zeus split them into two separate parts, condemning them to spend their lives in search of their other halves.”

― Plato, The Symposium 

 

When man & woman were one being, it scared the gods and when Jeri and I were one, I never felt so powerful.

My Queen of the Slipstream  

 

 

 

 

A Son’s Betrayal

 

 

 

I want to start by assuring you that I loved being a dad well, up to about the time Ryan was 13 or 14 years old. That’s when I began to see him turn into a stranger that I no longer recognized. I especially loved when he was a toddler & I began to ask him for a hug and he’d waddle across the room & give me or Jeri a hug. It was especially touching when he’d ask us for a hug. He was such a happy & mellow toddler that people used to ask us what our secret was. We’d chuckle and reply something to the effect that no, we didn’t have any magic bag of tricks but we treated him like a person i.e. not the typical baby talk many parents use with their children.

need I say more?

 

And throughout most of his elementary school years, Ryan was a generous & loving son i.e. he’d make us breakfast on Mother’s Day as well as Father’s Day and our birthdays, etc. I would look for opportunities where I could pretend that I was stuck in figuring out how to fix something & would ask Ryan to help me figure it out so his self-confidence would grow. In fact, starting somewhere in his middle school years, I kept suggesting to him that he learn how to fix cars. I told him that not only would he save himself a lot of money but that he could also earn some pocket money from his friends by helping them fix their cars & of course, he grew up to be a top of the line mechanic.

 

I especially remember with great fondness the joy, love, & warmth of Jeri’s love for our son. She absolutely glowed as a mother and I have honestly never met another woman so well-suited to the role or better qualified. Unfortunately, due to a combination of factors, mostly the demands of Jeri’s ridiculously demanding work as a special education teacher & my sensitive nature, we drifted apart in terms of intimacy. But on the deeper levels of what constitutes love between two people, our love for one another never wavered.

mother & child in the wonderment of life

 

After my mother passed away, I was executor of her estate along with my Aunt Sylvia & she told me something one day that really touched my heart. She said that my mom had said to her, “Jeri is always there for Rob no matter what & he deserves that and has never had that before.” I believe that I too was always there for Jeri and that she knew it too & that’s why she included me in her Will? For instance, Jeri and I were separated when Ryan was in the 7th grade & I wasn’t working but had my inheritance from my mom’s passing and had my own apt. Well it was a particularly rough year for Ryan in terms of asthma attacks. He missed over 65 days of school that year due to his asthma & Jeri would call me the night before and ask if I could come over the next day to stay home with him.

on one of our weekend getaways before we married

 

I was always only too glad to be able to do so & I don’t say this to brag and I don’t deserve a medal or anything for having done it. In my book, it’s what any loving father would/should do. It made me feel good knowing that I helped take some of the worry off Jeri’s mind because she knew that no babysitter could care as much for his welfare as his father would. And when Jeri had some major project to do like painting the exterior of her home, cutting the wood from a tree she had felled, etc., she would head for the phone book but I’d insist that I could take care of it and for a lot less money & would get some of my friends to help and we’d do it. Portions of her fence would fall down from time to time due to the strong winds that would assault us & it gave me another opportunity to help her out.

 

And when we were together, I usually cooked dinner for us because poor Jeri often put in ten to twelve-hour days & would be totally exhausted by the time she got home. I tried explaining this to Ryan several times i.e. being a family isn’t just about sharing the good times, eating goodies, having fun, etc., it’s also about sharing the work. I usually spent anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half preparing good, nutritious meals, not just heating up some frozen dinner crap.

like I said, Jeri was one of the most loving mothers I’ve ever known

 

I truly appreciated whatever opportunity that came along which allowed me to be of help to Jeri because she had been there so many times when I had my back up against the wall i.e. I’d be stranded & broke in Europe and she’d send me a plane ticket back to Oregon or I couldn’t get a job for the life of me i.e. I was either “under-qualified” or “over-qualified.” And many of those jobs they said I wasn’t qualified to do was such a farce because I’ve seen how incompetent those performing those jobs were.

 

Moreover, I often had to practically plead with the employers who said I was “over-qualified” and would basically say, Look, wouldn’t you rather have someone over-qualified than not qualified? I still have bills to pay and if you treat me right & give me the opportunity, I guarantee you that I’ll be your best & hardest working employee. Unfortunately, there were several periods in my working life where I couldn’t find work for several months or more & Jeri allowed me to sleep on her couch. This is hard on a man’s pride & feelings of self-worth but Jeri was always gracious, or at least, most of the time but yeah, there was often friction between us. Yet underneath it all, I was comforted by the knowledge that she, like no one else I’ve ever known, cared more deeply about not only my physical well-being, but also my mental & emotional well-being.

 

Furthermore, it also warmed my heart that again, whether we were together or separated, when serious family matters came up i.e. when she discovered that Ryan was stealing money from her purse when he was around 11 or 12, she called me and asked how we should deal with it & I came over and we dealt with it then & there. Or when our dog, Rocket, was so old & in pain, I convinced her that the right thing for us to do was to take him to the humane society and have him put to sleep. I broke down in tears as we said goodbye to our old friend & I know that Jeri was relieved and knew too that it was the right decision.

 

Continuing on, when Jeri and I would be separated & I had my own place, often sharing a house or apt. with a roommate, I’d have Ryan stay the weekend with me. We’d do fun things together, stay up late, eat goodies. Sometimes Ryan would start to bad-mouth Jeri but I’d stop him and remind him of how much his mom loved him & how hard she worked to provide a good home, food, clothes, etc. I called Ryan just about every night when we didn’t live under the same roof to ask him how his day had been & I’d tell him that I loved him as we said goodbye.

Ryan & me taking a break from hitch-hiking towards the West Coast of Scotland

 

I’m telling you all this not to simply brag but to illustrate how things used to be between my son & I. And next to the loss of my beloved wife & the best friend I have ever had, Ryan’s betrayal of not only me but Jeri as well, has been the second most painful experience I’ve ever known. Before I veer off on the dark path, here’s a sketch of what I believe were the good things I did as a father;

Ryan & me in a pub in Northern Scotland

 

  • I went to every Little League game of his for the seven years he was in Little League
  • I attended just about every practice he went to for Little League
  • I went to every parent/teacher conference throughout his schooling
  • I stayed with him in the hospital overnight the vast majority of the times he was hospitalized because Jeri made three times the money I did & we figured that if anyone should have to lose their job, it made more sense for me to be the one
  • I spent over a year building him a tree-house (I’m a pathetic carpenter & was the joke at the local hardware store)
  • I insisted we get a dog because I believe every child should have a dog & learn how to care for their pets
  • I took him on several trips with just him & I including the month we spent in Europe of August 1997 & I looked for every opportunity to teach him street smarts—we backpacked, took Eurail, slept in youth hostels, etc.
  • Jeri and I both took turns reading to him in bed most nights throughout elementary school
  • I insisted that he read for at least 20 minutes per day during summer vacations
  • And when he was in high school, Jeri & her brother, Howard began encouraging Ryan to join the military when he graduated from high school. I’ve only jumped down Jeri’s throat a couple of times in all the years we loved one another & this was one of them. I was so worried about this possibility that I sat down at the kitchen table for two days in a row & must’ve written for 7 to 8 hours each day pouring out every reason I could as to why a young person should not join the military, in fact, that was my original title & a few years later I edited & expanded it and the title is now; The Politics of Patriotism. And it’s one of the essays I am proudest of & I have received some very nice compliments on it from several notable writers. I pleaded with Ryan to read it several times since I wrote it but he never could bother but then again, he never joined the military.
  • I gave Jeri $500 towards Ryan’s bar mitzvah & read a piece I’d written for the occasion & a poem by Bob Dylan and I became emotional in front of the crowd of people present.

    Ryan’s bar mitzvah

 

Now for the ugly part or the betrayal as I see it. Ryan was in either the seventh or eighth grade when I had my first rude & sad awakening. I overheard him & his best friend, Jeff, in the next room making fun of homeless people. I believe I told Jeri about it but she was in denial and I believe her denial lasted right up until the last month of her life when I told her that I had called Ryan the night she’d returned from L.A. because I was so worried about her obvious physical weakness & that I had gotten emotional over the phone. I had waited a day to see if he’d call his mom but he didn’t. And he only lived a ten-minute drive away.

 

Jeri didn’t say anything regarding this matter to me but I knew that he had cut her to the bone. She waited for four days & then sent him an e-mail saying that now she knew what kind of man he was & that she was very disappointed in him. I have saved this e-mail and would be glad to share it with any of you who may doubt me. Yeah, I do believe that some of you may doubt me because it seems that I have been kicked to the curb so-to-speak by most of you. Clearly you don’t have a clue as to the true nature & history of Jeri and mine’s love for one another.

on our honeymoon in Paris & without a doubt, the coldest place on Earth!

 

Before I forget, there’s one more item that I’d like to share with you, it’s a You Tube video I created a few years before Jeri passed away. Jeri told me that it brought tears to her eyes; I had written this essay several years before I posted it on You Tube and I’m happy that at least Jeri got to view it before she passed on.

 

Okay, back to the heart of darkness that this essay is about. As I mentioned earlier, Ryan has spent many days & nights in the hospital due to asthma attacks as he was growing up. Well, I’ve had surgery three or four times in the past dozen years or so and not only has Ryan never visited me when I was in the hospital, he never even picked up a phone to call and ask how I was doing. It was particularly depressing when I was in the hospital one New Year’s Eve.

on our honeymoon near Galway, Ireland at a local pub (my wild Irish rose)

Admittedly, his lack of empathy or concern about me is painful & while I’m willing to acknowledge that maybe I wasn’t the best role model as a father with my drinking, there is absolutely no excuse for the hurt he caused Jeri. For instance, a day or two before Ryan got married in Las Vegas, Jeri flew down to do what she could to help out. It was Mother’s Day and Ryan took his wife to be & her mother out to breakfast for Mother’s Day but didn’t invite Jeri. Howard—Jeri’s brother—and her had only paid for their three-week honeymoon cruise in the Mediterranean, about $10,000 I believe? And yeah, I know that money isn’t the point but it still merits a mention here.

 

Moreover, in terms of hurting Jeri, a few years before she passed on, Ryan casually announced at a Thanksgiving gathering that he was getting a vasectomy. To be honest, I had never really given the matter much thought, I guess I just took it for granted that one day I’d be a grandfather especially after Ryan had gotten married. But I know this decision on Ryan & his wife’s part, really hurt Jeri. And the casual, matter of fact way that he announced it also revealed his coldness i.e. “Kids are too expensive.”

the hardest working teacher I’ve ever known & yes, I am biased!

 

Above all, his almost complete heartlessness for the last month of his mother’s life, is why I disowned him and will never speak to him again! About a week or two after I had told Jeri that I had called Ryan & told him about his mother’s condition, did he bother to come over to her home & that was only because she had called him & requested that he do so because she had something she wanted to tell him & I.

 

We all sat down in Jeri’s living room & when she made her announcement, I was flabbergasted. She told us that she was “gifting” each of us $22,000. I said, I’m trying to hold back my tears Jeri. And Ryan immediately started lecturing me on how I should spend my gift from Jeri. I tried to bite my tongue for as long as I could but when I started to get angry, Jeri intervened and calmed things down. The audacity of this greedy, self-centered little prick was unbelievable? I simply couldn’t comprehend where or why he thought he was qualified to lecture me in such a condescending manner?

I was in a serious bicycle accident & Jeri came to my rescue

 

And that was the only time he could be bothered to come over to his mom’s house in the last month of her life. The next time he visited his mother was when I called him from the emergency room after I had taken Jeri there. She was in emergency for only a couple of hours before they transferred her upstairs to the I.C.U. I believe Ryan stayed for a few hours before leaving?

 

Jeri tried to persuade me to go to her house and get some sleep but I refused to because I knew that if I were in her shoes, I’d feel better knowing a loved one was there by my side. In fact, Jeri tried to get me to at least go sleep in the waiting area but again, I wanted my love to know she wasn’t alone & I slept in a chair by her bed.

 

Let me backtrack at this point as to how/why I took Jeri to the emergency room. As I mentioned already, upon Jeri’s return from L.A., she was visibly very weak & her strength along with her vision continued to degenerate over the next month. I drove her to doctor & ophthalmologist appointments almost daily. I offered to do the grocery shopping on my own but she was tired of being in bed all the time. But she could only stay on her feet for no more than 20 minutes at a time before needing to sit down & rest.

 

In fact, we joked about getting a bell she could ring like those rich people in the movies who’d ring a bell for their servants to come. It was funny because I’d be in the front room watching T.V. and Jeri would call me on her smart phone when she wanted or needed something. And one morning, I heard the t.v. in her room on so I went to see how she was. I asked her how she’d slept the night before & she replied; “Horribly, I was in agony.”

a magical wood gallery we stopped at as Jeri drove, towing my RV back to her home after my bicycle accident

 

I said, that’s it, I’m taking you to the hospital. She kept arguing with me but I was persistent and she finally gave up & agreed to go. She then wanted to change her clothes even though I tried to reassure her that she was dressed appropriately. I gave in and asked her if she’d like some privacy while she changed. She said; yes please. So, I stepped just outside her bedroom & left the door ajar so I could hear her.

 

I heard her struggling for several minutes to get dressed & then I asked if she could use some help. She faintly replied; “Yes please.” She was trying to pull her jeans up but didn’t have the strength to do so on her own so I helped her. I quickly went out to her car, and opened the passenger door then went back in and picked her up in my arms and carried her to her car & helped her into the seat. I drove to the nearest hospital I knew of & parked outside the Emergency entrance in the middle of the parking area. I ran inside and grabbed a wheelchair and went back to her car & lifted her into the wheelchair and wheeled her into Emergency.

 

The receiving nurse in Emergency or whatever you call them, could see how bad a shape Jeri was in & didn’t say shit about filling out forms and Jeri was immediately taken into Emergency. A guard told me that I needed to move my car so I did and then I called Ryan. I went back in and was standing outside the room where the doctors were helping Jeri. A female doctor came out and said; “Your wife is very sick and she told us of how great a care you’ve been taking of her.” I was struggling to keep from breaking down completely right then & there but I managed to keep it together at least on the surface.

 

As I recall, Jeri wasn’t in Emergency very long before they moved her up to the I.C.U. While I was waiting outside the Emergency room she was being attended to in, I got a phone call from the teacher I used to work for at Arcata High School in Humboldt County. We had agreed to do a conference call between him, the Vice-Principal of the high school and myself regarding a position. I had worked there for the entire school year a few years earlier. But when I answered the phone, I told them that I couldn’t speak right now because my wife was in Emergency. My former supervisor told me; “You know what Rob, we don’t need to interview you, I know of your work ethic. You have the job. Can you be here by the 26th of August?” I replied, I don’t know, can I call you back? Greg said, “sure.”

Jeri doing her thing on our honeymoon at a friend’s house in Zurich

 

Later on, when Jeri and I were alone in her room in the I.C.U., I told her about the phone call and she urged me to go because she knew how long I’d been out of work and desperately trying to find a job. I replied; Honey, I can get a job anytime, that’s not important. What’s important is you and I’m staying here with you.

 

I then told Jeri that I was going to start calling family & friends to let them know what was going on. I mentioned her brother, Howard & her niece, Anna first and Jeri said okay. Then I listed her friend from childhood, Arna and Jeri’s immediate response was, “No!” After a few moments though, she relented and said; “Well, okay.” This confirmed what I had long suspected i.e. there had been a falling-out between them. And my hunch is that it had a lot to do with me? I say this because sometimes Jeri would go down to L.A. to take care of some business but a few times after she’d returned from L.A. and I would ask her if she got together with Arna, Jeri snapped back with; “I don’t always need to see Arna when I go down to L.A.”

 

Reading between the lines, my guess is that Arna, like Jeri’s family and others, couldn’t understand why she continued to care about me & would help me when I was down and out. And again, my guess is that Arna probably bad-mouthed me to Jeri and this pissed Jeri off. You see, Jeri was always much more private than me & would keep her personal business to herself and not share it so freely like I do.

 

And since we’re on the subject of Arna, I’m going to fast-forward to the morning that Jeri passed on because like Ryan, Arna took off her mask of civility and revealed her contempt for me. I mentioned that Jeri’s niece, Anna, had hurt my feeling when she said that I had scared Jeri when I leaned in to kiss her once, before her vision had gone completely. I tried to explain to Anna that it wasn’t that I had scared Jeri but rather that I had startled her because her vision had deteriorated so dramatically that when I came into view, she was startled, not scared.

one of my favorite pics of Jeri because she was stoned (which was rare) & obviously so cute!

 

After saying this to Arna, her immediate response was something like; “I don’t give a shit what you feel!” I was taken aback by her coldness especially after the fact that I had suggested calling her right after calling Jeri’s brother & niece and Arna had witnessed my holding Jeri’s hand pretty much the entire 12 hours roughly after the doctors pulled the plug on the machine that was keeping Jeri alive.

 

I know that I’m veering away from the subject to some extent but I also mention this because I reached out to Arna for help regarding Jeri’s brother, Howard, and his betrayal of me by leading me on for a couple of years re: giving me the 15% of Jeri’s share of their parent’s Will because Jeri had bequeathed to me that amount in her Will.  Arna was amazed that I dared to reach out to her for help after having been so shitty to her on the morning I’m referring to. She reminded me of how I had treated her and the fact that she had bought all that food for our big breakfast. She also asked what my “end game” was?

 

Asking this sort of question regarding my behavior towards my son is perhaps only the kind of question a lawyer could ask? And for the record, this isn’t a fucking game, this is a matter of principle & character i.e. mine! Once again, this shows how shallow not only Arna is but all those who sit in judgment of me and of Jeri & mine’s relationship over the years. I do remember being cold towards Arna after her retort when I tried to express my sadness at Anna’s perspective. But to my recollection, I was pretty subtle & only really obvious in my sarcasm as she was walking out Jeri’s front door and I said to her; Well, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on your way out! And the kicker regarding Arna’s negative reply to my e-mail of a few months back was her demand that I apologize to her & that I should put all Ryan’s words & behavior in the past. And she assured me at the same time that if I were to reply to her e-mail that she wouldn’t even read it before deleting it. Well, so much for the ice queen.

 

Continuing on with the calls to people about Jeri’s condition in the I.C.U. Even though I was jealous of Jeri’s friend, Randy, who owned the hot air balloon she often crewed on & they had a relationship after Jeri & I officially divorced in 2007, I called him to let him know because I knew that Jeri cared for him. And when he showed up, I offered to give them some privacy. They both insisted that it wasn’t necessary but I left anyways.

like I said, it didn’t matter whether we were separated or divorced, Jeri never forgot my B-Day nor I hers, this was at an Irish pub in Portland

 

Returning to the subject of my beloved son, to the best of my recollection, he graced his mother with a few hours of his valuable time each day. But one of central reasons why I can’t and won’t ever forgive him is the fact that he chose to not take off two of the four days his mom was in the I.C.U. before she died. He worked for himself and some may attempt to argue that therefore, he couldn’t take the time off. I say, Bull fuckin’ shit! If a person puts the making of money before being there for a dying parent who loved them as fully & completely as any parent could possibly do, they clearly lack the basic qualities of what it means to be human.

 

Albeit, I did manage to persuade the lizard king to stay the night with his mom after her vision had completely gone & she could no longer speak.  I wanted to go to Jeri’s house and create a final playlist of music for her. You see, to my mind, if I were dying and could no longer see or speak, music would be a nice distraction & help in my final hours.

 

Howard and Anna wanted to go back to Jeri’s with me so they did. Ryan and his wife stayed with Jeri. I spent several hours creating several music CDs for Jeri selecting every single song with the aim of saying something special to the love of my life or hoping to? I had completed my task and it was the middle of the night. Anna and I were talking & I told her that I was going back to the hospital. Anna asked if she could come & of course I said yeah. She said she wanted to wake Howard up and he too decided to join us. When we got back to Jeri’s room, Ryan was irritated and yeah, he asked me why I was there?

 

Do you still think/feel that I’m the bad guy? How could a loving son ask such a question is what I want to know? I believe that Howard & Anna went out to the waiting area and slept for the remainder of the night and that I slept in a chair in Jeri’s room? Not really sure, some of the incidents & times are a bit jumbled in my memory bank but not the key points.

 

For example, I believe it was the next day when I put the first music CD on in a boom box I had brought with me. But it only played for about 20 minutes or so before Ryan commanded that I turn the music off. And my next action or rather, inaction is something for which I’ll never be able to forgive myself. I was livid with rage but some part of me, I don’t know if it was my head or my heart, said, don’t do it Rob. Think about Jeri. You’ll upset her and she’s already going through Hell. So, like a coward, I shut the music off & I shut my mouth even though I wanted so badly to slap him down & scream at the top of my lungs; You ignorant, heartless prick! Don’t you get it? The music is for your mom!

 

I don’t know if irony is the right word here or perhaps “poignant,” but the fact that a couple of months earlier, Jeri and I were standing in her kitchen and she told me; “Rob, I really like the music CDs you’ve made for me over the years.”

 

The simple, incontrovertible fact that this alien creature I used to consider my son, couldn’t even comprehend that I created the music as a last testament of my love and care for his mother and it was for her pleasure, her pain, and hopefully a bit of respite from the sure knowledge that she was living her last hours on this earth. He was clearly unable to put himself in her shoes and consider how it might feel to not be able to speak or see but only to feel and hear as we, her loved ones, surrounded her for her last days, hours, & moments.

 

You see, when Jeri thanked me the first time on that day that I mentioned above, I gave a perfunctory “that’s okay, your welcome.” But Jeri reiterated, “No Rob, I really love the CDs you made me, especially when I’m driving on a long-distance trip” (she took such trips on her hot air ballooning experiences).

 

When she made it clear how serious she was in her thanks to me, it warmed my heart. I had periodically made music CDs for her throughout the years, and music cassettes before CDs came along. In fact, I have shared my music with family & friends for many years and love doing so. You see, this is all by way of my saying that what one of Jeri’s most precious nurses in the I.C.U. said when she took me aside some time after Ryan’s heartless command, touched me to my very soul.

 

This angel of a nurse & a person told me in private that Jeri said to her, and remember, this is after Jeri supposedly could no longer see or speak, that Jeri said to her; “I like the music.” These words have perplexed me ever since. Was this nurse simply trying to console me or did Jeri manage to utter these last words as this nurse was giving her a sponge bath or changing her or something? But whatever it was, it does give me some comfort to believe that Jeri knew to her dying moment how deep my love was for her. And even though we had “legally divorced,” that didn’t mean shit because we had honored that vow of “Until death do you part.”

 

Continuing on in my retelling of Ryan’s unbelievably callous behavior as his mother was dying and immediately after she had passed, is the fact that when the doctor came in to Jeri’s room and pronounced her officially dead, the doctor then informed us that Jeri’s body would be taken down to the morgue. I’m not sure if I screamed or merely raised my voice but I made it very clear when I said; No fuckin’ morgue!

 

I believe the doctor stepped outside the room for a few moments then returned and said; “Okay, she can remain here until the mortuary company comes to pick her up.” Ryan stood to leave, showing no signs of deep grief and I exclaimed; Wait a minute, we have to make funeral arrangements. He quipped; “Nope, anybody who mattered was here, that’s that.”

 

Again, I was incredulous and wondered if Ryan’s body hadn’t been invaded by some alien? And with that, Ryan & his wife got up and just walked out. My memory is a bit hazy here but I believe that Howard, Anna, & I may have stayed about a half hour before we left. And I feel such guilt for leaving before the mortuary company arrived & don’t know why I did? I feel that I abandoned my angel and there was no good reason for having done so.

 

Well, I believe it was that very same morning when we had returned to Jeri’s house when I got a call from a supposed good friend of Jeri’s. She asked me for Ryan’s phone number which I gave her. And I asked her if we could arrange a service where we could dump Jeri’s ashes from a hot-air balloon. Jeri’s friend said she’d ask.

 

The next day, Ryan called me to complain about all the people calling him & asking about funeral services for his mom. He was upset with me for giving them his phone number. And in a day or two, I learned that Jeri’s friend, Randy, whom I had called to let him know that she was dying, had decided that no, I wouldn’t be the one allowed to drop Jeri’s ashes from his hot air balloon even though it was my idea, but Ryan would. Yep! My “son” who didn’t even want to have a service was to be the one. Again, I’m just the worthless bastard who loved Jeri more than I love life itself, and the Hell with me.

 

I guess people have so much respect for the law i.e. the holy writ of a divorce, that it supersedes insignificant things like love and the abundant evidence of my love for Jeri? But curiously, that respect for the law seems to vanish into the ether whenever it comes to the crimes committed by the super-rich?

 

Believe it or not, I am going to attempt to wind this up now. A couple of the final straws that caused me to go over the edge and disown my former “son,” were the fact that he locked the gate to his mom’s house after she died. As I said, I was mostly on the road for the first few months but when I’d occasionally pass through Portland & even though the power was turned off, I’d spend the night in Jeri’s house just to be near her spirit but then he denied me even that. And backtracking yet again, several days after Jeri passed on & I was heading down towards Arcata for that job I told you about, I called Ryan and asked if he’d use his credit card to renew my AAA membership, and that I’d send him a money order to reimburse him.

 

Jeri had long ago accepted this about me i.e. my rejection of the whole credit racket or scam. You might reflect on the fact that just a couple of weeks before the world-wide economic collapse of 2008, those much-vaunted credit rating agencies of ours were still giving the super banks, the hedge funds, the insurance giant, A.I.G., Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, etc. all triple A credit ratings? But, if you or I are defrauded by corporations like AT&T which happens all the time & we refuse to pay their fraudulent claims against us, we are the criminals & our credit rating which rules over whether you can rent an apt., get a job, etc.

 

Well, I’ve only been studying politics for well over 30 years and conservatively have invested at least 49,000 hours in doing so, but obviously, I’m not going to be able to enlighten my son as to what a scam the whole credit game is in just a few sentences. So, it was clearly easier for him to write me off as a loser. Try to imagine how that would make you feel after all that I have shared with you regarding my love for my son as he was growing up. His condescending, patronizing, insulting tone on the phone that night as I stood outside that motel on my way south to Arcata cut me to the bone & I could no longer keep my feelings from erupting.

 

I simply informed him that not only had he just lost his mother, he had now lost his father as well. Ryan calmly replied; “Fine, you will hear from me through my lawyer from now on.”

 

As far as I’m concerned, Ryan no longer exists and I regret the day he was born. Before he came along, Jeri and I enjoyed a happy, healthy, and lively intimate relationship. And no, I’m not saying that I regret the joys of being a father when he was a toddler and as he went through elementary school. But yeah, I do regret what he became. And even more, I regret all the love Jeri and I wasted on him because he obviously evolved into some foreign being that now resembles nothing like the loving child we used to know.

 

I am sending this to the parties mentioned. And you Howard & Arna specifically, may feel that I deserve all this misery & sadness? Well, I submit that if you do, that speaks far more strongly as to who you are, not me.

 

I have been to Europe twice since Jeri has died. Europe used to be my Fountain of Youth, so-to-speak. And I took pride in the fact that I had been to Europe about a dozen times, often on a one-way ticket & sleeping on park benches, digging ditches, moving furniture to survive. Yet my first trip since Jeri’s passing was for three weeks & my second trip was for only three days. Why? Because there is no more joy in traveling for me since Jeri is gone. She was my Rock of Gibraltar, my guiding spirit, my home.

 

I never would’ve thought it possible for me to lose my love of travel & adventure that has animated my whole life since I was in the second grade and found that travel journal of a couple of college students who had rented my grandmother’s upper floor in her house.

 

Yeah, I used to think/believe as most young men do in their late teens and early 20s that we were/are invincible and the world was our oyster. But we, who make it to the ripe old age of 66, come to realize that it’s more luck than anything that has allowed us to still be here.

Without a doubt, the happiest day of my life!

 

Now, I feel like a man adrift in a rough sea desperately searching for something to cling to & hopefully keep me afloat. I was lonely the times Jeri and I were separated but I never felt all alone because I could call her or e-mail her any time I wanted to and she always promptly responded. We often spoke via telephone two or three times a week just to check in with one another as to how we were doing. And I often sent her articles on healthy foods, inspirational pieces (hoping to persuade her to retire early & go live in Tuscany for example and renew her love for painting, playing the flute, etc.) but she kept putting it off & rationalizing that she would do so next year even though she had more than enough money since her parents passed away

 

But now, my life-line, my soulmate, is on another plane of existence & I’m only with her occasionally in my dreams. I am slowly inching my way back to the living but as far as I’m concerned, Ryan is like a creature from another planet, a real alien, like Donald Trump, because I don’t see anything resembling a human in him!

 

And to switch gears completely, this is a song that Jeri and I danced to on the very first night we met at the Basin Street Lounge in Bellflower, CA, & it was “our song” from then on. I can think of no better way to end this sad essay than on the positive note of a love that few are able to comprehend or appreciate yet my love for this angel come down to earth is etched into my soul for eternity!

And another song that conveys just how deeply I dream of being reunited with my guardian angel;

 

I would willingly enter the gates of Hell and descend to the lowest rung of Dante’s Inferno if it would allow me one more day with my sweet angel, Jeri. And I would give all the knowledge, truth, & wisdom that I have sacrificed my life in the pursuit of for the same. I swear this on all that is holy to me!

Rob DeLoss,  March 30, 2019

 

Addendum

I forgot an important part and an event that could’ve changed my life significantly? A couple of weeks before Jeri left this world, she asked me to drive her to a lawyer’s office. She wanted to create a Living Trust. I waited in the car for a couple of hours but when she came out of the law office, she told me that they hadn’t completed the Trust. I went through Hell dealing with my sisters & my nephew as executor of my mom’s estate & knew how problematic it could be if Jeri passed away without her living trust completed. When the doctors told us how serious Jeri’s condition was and that she might not make it, I called the lawyer Jeri had started her living trust with & asked him to transfer Jeri’s basic wishes from the living trust into a Will and bring it to her hospital room so she could sign it.

The lawyer came in with a young lady, a paralegal to serve as a second witness to Jeri’s signing of her Will. Jeri became very agitated and was adamant about changing her Will. The lawyer said that it could cause serious problems down the line & I persuaded Jeri to just leave it as it was. I wasn’t even aware that she had named me in her Will. Howard & Anna were present when Jeri signed her Will.

Several months after Jeri passed away, I wanted to contest the Will because of how horribly Ryan was behaving towards me. I called the lawyer and asked if he’d corroborate the fact that Jeri wanted to change her Will & his first response was “Why? Do you want to sue me?” I was surprised that this was his response. I didn’t pursue the matter because it seemed like a long-shot for me to win. And when I called the lawyer again, he now denied ever saying that if Jeri changed her Will it could cause serious problems down the line. The paralegal had left the law office and I wasn’t able to track her down to verify my account of the signing of the Will. I asked Anna to back me up & yes, she remembered the event as I did but she wouldn’t go against her uncle Howard.

Looking back and given what I know now about Howard, he claimed to not remember Jeri wanting to change her Will but I believe he was covering his tracks because he was already plotting to cheat me out of what Jeri wanted me to have? Bottom-line and why I brought this matter up is that given how cold-blooded Ryan was the last month of Jeri’s life & as she told that first doctor in the Emergency room, “Rob took wonderful care of me for the past month,” or something to that effect, Jeri may very well have wanted to name me the executor of her estate & maybe even leave me a much greater percentage than the 15% she had originally put down in her Living Trust? Wishful thinking? Perhaps? But then why did she “gift” me and Ryan equal amounts of $22,000 a few weeks prior to her passing? Ryan wasn’t there when Jeri signed her Will and might not have had such an easy go of it had I not taken the initiative and had her Will prepared & followed through on. And I’m sure that he thinks he deserved every last dollar.

It was like Jeri’s death & naming him the executor freed him to show his true nature and he dropped any pretense of giving a shit about his father, the fool who tried his best to always be there for him unlike my biological father who left before i was even born. Well, I believe in karma and some day, Ryan will be repaid for his betrayal of both Jeri and me.

It must be a sign of getting old but I forgot another “minor” event that truly reveals Ryan’s sociopathic nature/character. And as I said, Jeri was in denial over the years regarding Ryan’s behavior & kept assuring me that we could teach him what a family is & guide him to becoming a loving son.

Ryan was in high school and had his driver’s license & a car. My prostate was completely blocked & I was home alone. All day I kept running to the bathroom but couldn’t pee. At times it felt like somebody was cutting my penis with an exacto knife and I was rolling on the floor in excruciating pain. When Ryan came home from school, I asked him if he’d take me to the hospital but he said that he was busy and couldn’t. Several hours later when Jeri walked in the front door and saw me, she instantly took me to the hospital. The nurses and the doctors in the Emergency room were all shocked at how much piss had backed-up in my bladder. I felt like some sort of freak or something. Yep! That was my loving son whom I never let stay overnight in a hospital alone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Social Skills in the 21st Century

 

 

Full disclosure; some may dismiss my remarks as being those of just another old curmudgeon but that’s disingenuous. And even though I came of age in another era, I believe that the core of social skills remains the same even though they’re becoming rarer in these times. It gives me little pleasure & no comfort to note how different the “socializing” of today’s youth is from when I was a young man.

remember the argument against homeschooling i.e. they need to develop social skills???

 

First on my hit list of things that I believe are having a deleterious effect on the young people of today is the “smart phone.” Everywhere I go, I see young people & increasingly, middle-aged people with their eyes glued to their “smart phones.” It’s like they’re cult members or zombies addicted to this techno-drug. And it saddens me to see so many people not interacting with one another because of their obsession with their gadgets. Perhaps these portable entertainment centers will serve them well as the corporate cockroaches slowly poison & strangle our natural environment? When all the trees have been felled, all waterways have become so polluted that it’s no longer safe to swim in any of them, when our air is so toxic that the entire human population is forced to wear masks like in China’s industrial zones, watching video clips of the days when humanity was nurtured by the real deal will have to suffice?

 

One of my pet peeves is when I’ll be involved in a conversation with a young person & their smart phone rings and they simply answer their phone & engage in a conversation, sometimes at length, with their “friend,” and leave me sitting there with no apology. It says to me that my feelings & my time is insignificant and reveals how pernicious the grip on their attention their phone has become. This is the height of rudeness & inconsiderate behavior in my opinion. And when this occurs, I will often just get up and leave to the surprise & amazement of my young acquaintance. They have no idea of why I left and if you have to tell them why, what’s the point?

 

Continuing on, I am personally disappointed in myself for allowing myself to get sucked into the Facebook orbit & its near universal capture of the younger generation. My gut told me long before I ever succumbed to its temptation, this is a platform for teenage girls and I resisted joining it for several years. But, a cousin of mine told me that it was how I could connect with relatives I’ve never met—which by-the-way, never panned-out—and I soon became addicted to the political posts.

 

You see, I have become obsessed with politics over the past 30 years or better & have conservatively invested over 50,000 hours or more in reading, researching, & writing about politics. And with Facebook, I deluded myself into believing that I had a real platform from which to speak and be heard. I would get an encouraging sentence or two every now & then, just enough to keep me going and God knows how much time & energy I invested in writing lengthy responses, observations, etc. on political issues over the several years I was a Facebook zombie?

 

I’ve always been a bit slow—perhaps that’s why I was a good fit as a teaching assistant in the special education field—but after the introduction of the emoticons as a way for people to “communicate” their responses on complex social & political issues, I slowly became more & more disillusioned. I finally saw the light after several, self-imposed exiles from this “Social media” megalith and had to accept the reality that my absence didn’t mean shit to my 3,000 or better “friends.” A couple of months ago, I finally took the leap of faith to sanity and permanently deleted my Facebook account after saving my history. Who knows, there may be something worthwhile to write about there?

 

Okay, onward & upward my fellow freedom fighters! You may be tempted to write me off as just another one of those Alex Jones conspiratorial nut-jobs like Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan but bear with me if you will? I’m not claiming that this is an overt or covert conspiracy on the part of the government but in terms of the harmful effects of the “social media” & the technological gadgets absorbing more & more of our attention, it may as well be a conspiracy. And the irony of calling these devices “smart phones,” would be hilarious if not for the fact that they are seriously undermining our ability to communicate with one another because of their built-in superficiality & manipulative functions.

 

Look up Tristan Harris if you doubt what I’m saying? He was high up on the food chain so-to-speak, in the Google corporation & has laid it out very succinctly i.e. smart phones are like mini slot machines in our pockets that people are becoming addicted to like gamblers addicted to gambling.

Obviously, reading is becoming an artifact from the past. Just do a brief search of Americans’ reading habits & the sad statistics that reveal how few of us have actually read a single book in the past year. The visual i.e. video clips, movies, video games, etc. has become the overwhelmingly favored mode of “learning” and “entertainment.” And returning to the subject of “smart phones,” this reminds me of another aggravating thing about them i.e. I’ll be having a conversation with someone & if I ask them a question about a subject or person or etc. that they’re not familiar with, they’ll pull out their smart phone to look it up. I try to politely tell them that I’m not interested in what their computer has to say on the subject & that they’re not being graded by me on our conversation. Sadly, far too many people today seem to believe that if it’s on the Internet, it’s a fact. But I’m old enough to remember the acronym G.I.G.O. (Garbage In, Garbage Out) i.e. just because someone entered the data on the Internet doesn’t make it truth or a fact. We have allowed ourselves to become slaves to the machines we’ve created & people have all but lost completely, the ability to think critically or analytically for themselves. And how convenient this all is for the corporate cockroaches who only have one agenda i.e. sell us as much of their crap as they possibly can!

 

Furthermore, thanks in large part to the beloved Bill Clinton & his signing of NAFTA into law, manufacturing which used to be a major part of our economy, has mostly disappeared from America so the powers that be aren’t really worried about worker strikes, etc. So, where do they think we’re going to get the money to buy their crappy products? And with their polarization of the public so effectively done by Trump with his hateful xenophobic rhetoric, along with our increasing isolation thanks to our smart phones, the status quo is smugly kicking back in their executive suites with their feet up on the table laughing at our gullibility.

 

This onslaught against working class Americans in particular & the public in general really became pronounced when Reagan became president. Exhibit A, one of Reagan’s first acts after becoming president was to fire the air traffic controllers who were on strike, for life. This sent a clear message to corporate America i.e. it’s open season on unions. And when Reagan proclaimed that the 1980s were the “Me Decade,” it was again evident that he & the G.O.P. were all about greed & selfishness and their “philosophy” was that of Ayn Rand’s. Do I need to remind you of that minor hiccup we experienced in 2008 when the world’s economy imploded thanks to the greed of bankers, hedge fund managers, the credit agencies, lack of regulations & enforcement of the regulations that were on the books, etc.? Yeah, a universal collapse that cost tens of millions of people to lose their homes, their pensions, their health insurance, their jobs, their life savings & their self-respect. So now when people tell me that they’re not interested in politics, I say, so none of the things I just mentioned above matter to you?

 

In today’s America, I rarely hear we or us, it’s usually me or I. Consider the very name of one of the most popular tech gadgets, the “i-Phone.” And they also offer the iPad, the iTablet, and God knows how many other “I” products? Get what I’m saying? It’s all about normalizing the glorification of the individual & selfishness or self-centeredness. Still not convinced? Consider the fact that Apple through clever tax avoidance schemes & loopholes takes advantage of Ireland’s low corporate tax rate of 3% to avoid the 35% it’d have to pay if it were honest in America. Again, greed is good & the hell with the public’s general welfare. We, the U.S. taxpayers pay our taxes because we can’t afford expensive whores like the corporate lawyers Apple pays to keep their profits growing. Never mind the fact that our taxes pay for the roads, highways, bridges, airports, ports, police, fire depts., military, etc. that these corporations rely on to conduct their business operations here in the U.S. even though they claim their headquarters are the P.O. Box they have in the Cayman Islands, etc.

 

I could go on and on about corporate corruption but I’ll try to refrain from doing so here. The point is that selfishness, which used to be considered a negative trait, has now become almost glorified or at least accepted as perfectly normal. Referring back to Reagan’s reign of error & terror, homelessness in America got a big start when Reagan closed down most state mental hospitals.. And for many, they became homeless because of medical bills or their companies closing down. Again, it was the greed & heartlessness of the corporate CEOs of the companies they worked for.

 

Moreover, this isn’t a partisan issue, Clinton also signed the bill that repealed the Glass-Steagall Act which FDR signed into law. If you aren’t familiar with it, it forbid commercial banks to make risky, speculative loans with people’s savings. And this too was a significant factor in the U.S. economic crash & the ripple effects in the world economy as a whole. Greed is just as popular and common in the democratic party as it is in the republican party.

 

Where has our humanity, our compassion for our fellow human beings, our empathy for others’ suffering, humiliation, & degradation gone to? Will you only care when it happens to you or a loved one? By then it’ll be too late. United we stand and divided we fall and division is what the corporate cockroaches are all about i.e. the centuries old strategy of divide & conquer.

 

It’d be laughable if it weren’t so damn serious that these “social media” are the antithesis of helping us to become more social beings. But I know that you’re probably still skeptical of my thesis and perhaps you will simply dismiss me as an alarmist or conspiracy nut so here are a couple of guys, one who is considered the father of Virtual Reality & a veteran of Silicon Valley and the other who was a part of the original team at Facebook;

and

Admittedly, I should emulate my intellectual hero, Noam Chomsky & read the New York Times and several other notable newspapers but my disillusionment with them was so deep that I turned against them decades ago. I get my news from the alternative media (not alternate facts but honest, in depth reporting) like Democracy Now! And Ian Masters on Background Briefing. I bring this up because I too was allowing myself to be manipulated by many of the “news” posts on Facebook but after it was revealed that Facebook sold our data to companies like Cambridge Analytica which played a major role in the election of Trump, that was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me & directly led to my escape from Facebook forever. Sadly, most Americans get their news from Facebook & not even having a modicum of critical or analytical thinking skills (I was an educator for over 20 years) they are easily manipulated by deceitful propagandists like Steve Bannon & FOX “News.”

 

In a nutshell, “social media” has taken over the role of mainstream media in terms of training us to be fearful of our government, fearful of our bosses i.e. will they fire me for something I wrote or posted on Facebook, etc.? fearful of terrorists, fearful of Muslims, etc. etc. etc. As I touched on earlier, people using these social media don’t want to have intelligent, fair debates on the serious issues facing us. No, they want to express their fears, their prejudices, their hate. And most are too lazy to even read more than a sentence, let alone respond in a calm, reasoned manner.

 

Obviously not only the corporations but also the U.S. government’s surveillance agencies like the F.B.I., the C.I.A., the N.S.A. and etc. are all tapping into our social media accounts & building detailed files on all of us. If you don’t know this by now, you must’ve been living in one of those caves that Osama bin Laden supposedly hid-out in. And please excuse me for a brief visit to Alex Jones land but how convenient for the masters of the universe who have access to all our personal histories. As Snowden pointed out, it’s all about control. Some theorize that should you become a problem to the powers that be, all they have to do is bring up all your personal history & build a case against you from there should they want to silence you.

 

Okay, back to my thesis. The reality we (not the 1% born with the proverbial silver spoon in their mouths) are faced with the fact that every last vestige of the “social safety net” that FDR established after the colossal harms done to us by the Robber Barons, is being slashed again & again & again. The Republicans have been very public about their opposition to the New Deal & have been doing everything in their power since it was established to totally eliminate every last vestige of it and have been largely successful in doing so. Trump is doing his best to help in their destruction & the simpletons who support him haven’t a clue.

 

Another aspect or result of our obsession with smart phones & social media is that they have become our shelter, the place we go to in search of solace & comfort. Have you ever noticed someone sitting alone in a café & how they attempt to escape their feeling of loneliness by bringing out their smart phone? This is yet another example of the closed, doom-loop system that is engulfing us.

 

We have Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter and a president who twitters like Tweedle-Dee & Tweedle-Dum rather than read a book on history or politics, etc. etc. etc. I can’t even keep up with all this nonsense nor do I care to. We’re so alone but we have convinced ourselves that we’re not really alone because we have thousands of “friends” on Facebook, etc. Artificial reality, alternate facts, alternate reality? Where does it all end if we don’t take a cold, hard, honest look at our lives and our values?

 

Consider if you will, the fact that the tax rate on the super wealthy was 91% under President Eisenhower’s term in office and today, it is under 14% and many of them have found loopholes so that they don’t even pay that. I bring this up to highlight the fact that there will never be enough personal wealth for them & therefore they keep finding ever more ways to take every last dime in our pockets. And because most Americans have been reduced to working two, three, four or more minimum wage jobs in their desperate attempts to avoid becoming homeless, one of the few remaining ways the wealthy can still profit from our desperation is by locking us up in their prisons for profit which have the additional benefit of forcing prisoners to work for private corporations like:

 

American Express Company, Bank of America, J.P. Morgan & Company, Allstate Insurance Company, GEICO, ExxonMobil Corporation, BP America, Johnson & Johnson, Sara Lee Corporation, Procter & Gamble, Sprint, AT&T, Verizon Communications, United Airlines, Wendy’s, McDonalds Corporation, Fruit of the Loom, Mary Kay Cosmetics, Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Quaker Oats and Microsoft.

 

And you thought the old chain-gang days where prisoners had to dig ditches, work for farmers, etc. were over? Yeah, welcome to America, the land where the rich are above the law & the free market is a bed-time story for the ignorant masses. Yeah, some prisoners earn as much as $1.15 per day but then the phone company charges them outrageous rates for personal phone calls which pretty much nullifies that.

 

Continuing on, every which way we turn, it’s all about quantity, not quality. How much money we make, how many friends we have, how expensive our clothes, our cars, our food, etc. is. How much time we saved on our drive to work. How fast our communications are not the quality of that communication just the speed. As a society, America is among the dumbest in the so-called “developed world.” Consider who’s representing us in the oval office. Every time he speaks, I feel nauseous or like someone is scratching a blackboard with their fingernails.

 

The vast Midwest has become a series of ghost towns because they were usually one company towns & when their CEOs realized they could make a lot more profit by shutting down and moving to countries where people are so desperately poor that they’ll work for a couple of dollars per day, they abandoned their loyal employees in the blink of an eye. And cities like New York & L.A. have become too expensive for the vast majority of us to live in. Mind you, I have nothing against someone who works hard & becomes rich except when they do so by lying, cheating, stealing & in general destroying people’s lives in order to become obscenely wealthy.

In conclusion, I’ve spent my life informing myself. I’ve been an avid reader since I was in the first grade & for the past 30 years or better, I guesstimate that I’ve spent at least 50,000 hours reading books on history, politics, philosophy, etc. and making copious notes in many of the books in my extensive library. I’ve watched countless documentaries, listened to political & social speakers, written hundreds of essays & over 4,000 pages on two major books I’m writing, etc. etc. etc. but I have nowhere to turn to for social interaction.

 

In fact, this reminds me of an amusing anecdote. As I mentioned earlier, I have been corresponding with Chomsky for the past 13 years, well in one of our exchanges, I complained about the social taboo against speaking about politics in bars & Noam wasn’t aware of it. Yeah, that caused me to chuckle but it depresses the hell out of me because the few times I have gotten away with talking about politics in bars, I saw people’s eyes light up & they became very animated and really enjoyed the conversation. Some have even said that it was the best conversation they’d had in years. Is it merely another “coincidence” that we’re not allowed to talk about politics in bars? Think about it, how convenient for the powers that be i.e. if the working class can’t share their thoughts on how they’re being screwed, it makes it easier to control them? Where else in our society can people gather & freely exchange their ideas, thoughts, worries, etc.?

 

But like babies in their cribs with those colorful mobiles with animals & sparkly objects to draw their attention, we have our smart phones to distract us from our troubles. And our cribs have invisible bars that surround us. I still keep spitting in the wind so-to-speak by posting new essays on my blog that no one reads or comments on. And just before I hit the publish button, I am told again & again that my writing is too difficult, that I should write simpler sentences and should write on trendy topics. Fuck that! Our collective apathy & intellectual laziness will be our downfall and we may very well end-up living in a version of Mad Max’s world. As for me, I escaped from L.A. with my wife & son over 25 years ago. We moved to Portland, Oregon and it was a great new life for a while but my wife & I drifted apart and she passed away five years ago now. So, I move up and down the coast in my RV staying for six months or so in one little coastal town after another but I may as well be living alone on a deserted island for all the social interaction I get. Paradise isn’t so pretty when you have no one to share it with & no one to talk to!

 

—Rob DeLoss, St. Patrick’s Day 2019 in Trinidad, California

 

P.S.  My wife always took the time to read my work and give me constructive feedback even though she was always swamped with paperwork because she was a Special Education teacher. And even though we were divorced, I never refer to her as my ex-wife because there was nothing “ex” about her. She was truly my best friend and we never stopped caring about each other.

 

 

Trump, the Malignant, Mendacious, Moronic, Malicious, Malevolent, Miscreant, Misanthrope, & Megalomaniac!

 

 

 

I used to get tired of hearing people say, “They all lie and they’re all crooks,” and felt it was a cop-out for people who couldn’t be bothered to get involved. But as I get older & have been paying close attention to politics for well over 30 years now, I have to admit that I see their point. Yet Donald Trump is a world apart from your ordinary lying president.

Depending on how you choose to look at it, he is either an Olympian liar or he’s from the lowest or worst circle of Dante’s “Inferno,” i.e. Treachery. And he definitely personifies the other eight circles of Hell (lust, gluttony, greed, anger, violence, fraud) & many more of humanity’s worst attributes.

You don’t need to be religious to see this vile creature as evil personified

 

It’s almost too fantastic to believe that in a single human being, all that is vile & despicable could exist? Yet we witness his loathsome, sickening, & despicable words and actions daily. If he were just a private citizen, we wouldn’t need to be concerned but this babbling baboon could totally wreck our economy & start a nuclear exchange due to his mind-boggling ignorance & incompetence and his schoolyard temper tantrums.

he told us he was the greatest but not that he was the greatest threat to humanity

 

Let’s start with his malignancy. The word “malignant” is most often used in relation to cancer & signifies a tendency for the tumor or the cancer to progressively get worse & lead to death. Clearly Trump is a cancer on America & by extension, the World. His rhetoric of fear & hate is spreading around the globe & emboldening dictators to follow suit.

as one of Trump’s role models, Mussolini said; “Fascism should more rightly be called “Corporatism” because it’s a marriage of the state & corporate power

 

To get a deeper understanding of Trump’s malignant nature, one only has to briefly survey the signs of a malignant narcissist which Trump displays for all the world to see.

 

  1. A sense of entitlement: the way he struts around the world stage with his head held high & that Mussolini smug mug like he’s king of the world. Daddy Fred Trump obviously instilled in him a sense of superiority to black people, poor people, etc. And Trump’s lies regarding his being a “self-made man,” are being revealed more & more i.e. he claimed that his papa only loaned him a million dollars when in fact, daddy gave him over $420 million. But Donny helped daddy too, he set up phony corporations so daddy & mommy could hide the bulk of their fortune & not pay taxes on it.

    twin sons of different mothers
  2. A lack of conscience & empathy: the first example that comes to mind is his mocking of a physically-challenged person in one of his rallies as a presidential candidate, his disrespect of the Gold-Star family who lost their son in Iraq—while Donny’s daddy paid a doctor to say that Donny had bone-spurs so he couldn’t go in the military & possibly be sent to Vietnam, & his disrespect towards John McCain who was a prisoner of war for over five years.

    Yep! Another example of that “compassionate conservatism”
  3. A sadistic streak: there are many reports of Donny being a schoolyard bully & his personal and vicious attacks against anyone who dares to criticize or disagree with him is evident in his daily barrage of rants on Twitter. Moreover, consider his repeated calls to his Duck Dynasty Klan followers at his rallies to rough up the journalists or anyone who dares to raise their voice in protest.
  4. Egocentrism: Do I really need to provide examples here? Well, just in case any of you, my imaginary readers, have been on the Moon or some other planet for the past couple of years; Donald Duck never tires of singing his own praises i.e. he’s the best, the smartest, knows more than anyone else about any subject you bring up when he’s within earshot. Here’s an amusing video clip to corroborate just in case you still have doubts?
  5. Grandiosity: well again you would’ve had to be living under a rock for the past 40 years or better to not know that Donny truly believes he’s some sort of modern embodiment of King Louis the XIV of France & every one of the buildings with his name on them (though that’s all) must be Palaces of Versailles.
    Clearly just another Joe that his Duck Dynasty Klan members can relate to in his gold-plated bubble

    Personally, I feel that his taste in decorating is more in line with the Hispanic low-riders in L.A. who are fond of velvet paintings of Jesus, cheap, plush red velour, & dingle-balls hanging from the interior roofs of their cars. But like good old king Louie, Trump believes in the Divine Rights of Kings & since he inherited his divinity from Daddy Trump, he deserves respect & absolute loyalty. And here’s another tidbit for you, his daughter, Ivanka, who he seems to have an abnormal affection for, has the middle name of Marie & she and Marie Antoinette have a remarkably similar character i.e. “Let them eat cake.” Well take heart my friends because Marie & her hubby, Louis the XVI, lost their heads in the French Revolution (pun intended).

  6. Paranoia: Have you noticed how frequently Donny whines to his Jim Jones’ Kool-Aid drinking fans that he’s the victim of a witch-hunt, a democratic conspiracy, the deep-state, etc. etc. etc.? Could it be that he has a guilty conscience? No, silly me, he clearly doesn’t have a conscience any more than Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc. It’s probably just the realization that he’s committed so many crimes over the decades that he knows the law or public opinion is eventually going to find him out & he’s going to pay big-time.
  7. A Manipulative Nature: Duh! Donny’s very essence just screams Used Car Salesman, Snake-oil salesman, con man, hustler, grifter, etc. etc. etc. He successfully manipulates people with his 24/7 bragging about his phony accomplishments, his threats, his lies, his fear & hate mongering, etc.

    and oh so many willing suckers, what does that tell you about the intelligence of a third of our nation’s citizens?
  8. Projection (they project their bad behaviors onto others) I call this trying to turn the tables on their critics & an intellectual cop-out because they don’t have to bother to logically refute their critic, they simply accuse them of doing what they themselves are doing.

    Clear example of “projection” i.e. Trump calls the media “fake news” when in fact, he speaks nothing but lies–5,000 to date

 

In conclusion, I could go on ad nauseam & ad infinitum about this most despicable of persons let alone our president but I realize that you most likely already agree with me or if you don’t, you’ve probably stopped reading once you read the title of this essay.

for those with a “short” attention span

I’m an old fart, technologically-challenged, & definitely not a participant in the “social media” scene. Therefore, I doubt if many people will come across this essay. I have been writing like this for over three decades & have received a handful of positive feedback from a handful of readers but one of my readers of a recent essay that I wrote was Noam Chomsky. And that simple fact & his brief response has made it all worthwhile. I will leave you with one last morsel to chew on;

The Truly Pornographic

this is the truly pornographic i.e. the continuous death of war & for what?

 

The other day, my ex-wife got upset at some photos I had printed of some nude women. I believe these photos are excellent examples of natural beauty & are every bit as lovely as Michelangelo’s “David,” Botticelli’s “Venus on a Half Shell,” the Mona Lisa, etc. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder & so is “pornography.” The true pornography is the pornography of violence that America reveres & is awash in.

I have never bought a Penthouse magazine or Hustler, etc. because to me, they are tasteless. I have bought many copies of Playboy over the years. But what occurred to me after my ex-wife got upset & felt so offended was that the true pornography is the pornography of power & the pornography of ignorance that allows or turns a blind eye to so much of the pain, suffering, degradation, & death all around us.

Trump & his “Christian” base don’t give a damn about these innocent victims of their wars for the corporate cockroaches

 

First off, what I mean by the pornography of power is the obscene levels of power that we have allowed our government & transnational corporations to acquire. Time and time again they have in effect, spit in our faces. The American public in poll after poll, voted against the bailout of Wall Street but the government went ahead & bailed them out. They tell us they don’t have the money to provide health care for all of us but they keep funding these wars in Iraq & Afghanistan to the tune of a billion dollars a week.

Of course, the “other’s” suffering & death never counts when it comes to America’s “good intentions”

Our public school system has been steadily crumbling for decades & they tell us there isn’t enough money yet the weapons manufacturers & the private mercenary corporations like Blackwater are flourishing. Our infrastructure is disintegrating

Obama’s stunt in Flint revealed his betrayal & sell-out to the powers that be

while the president of vice, Dick Cheney’s corporation, Halliburton is making record profits supposedly rebuilding Iraq’s infrastructure, which we destroyed.

U.S. sent 363 tons of shrink-wrapped cash to Iraq & $9 billion goes missing, but, oh well?

 

These are but a few of the many truly pornographic or obscene acts that are going on & I wish my ex-wife and all Americans were even a fraction as outraged at these acts as those “Christian” fundamentalists are at abortion & gay marriage. It’s the pornography of ignorance that has allowed things to go so wrong for so long in this land of “freedom,” “equality,” & “democracy.” And the corporate media & the purposeful “dumbing down” of our children have deliberately spread this pornography of ignorance in our public educational system. The standards of academic or intellectual excellence have been watered down steadily over the past decades & as a result, many high school graduates aren’t even equipped to handle a minimum wage job. The paramount skills of critical & analytical thinking are taught in only a few, isolated school systems. An uninformed & unable to think clearly & rationally citizenry is easy to fool and easy to ignore.

And in Trump-land, being stupid is worn as a badge of honor

No, I’m not a ‘conspiracy nut,’ the elite have publicly declared their goals time and time again. Look up President Wilson’s statement regarding public education for a prime example of their contempt for us.

 

To continue, we’ve become so disengaged or psychically numbed that we don’t have sympathy or compassion for the soldiers returning from the horrors of the wars in Iraq & Afghanistan. I don’t see those outraged fanatics screaming that abortion is murder, scream about the suffering & humiliation of the homeless. Many if not most of the homeless are veterans of the Vietnam War, the Gulf war, & now the wars in Iraq & Afghanistan. Bumper stickers proclaim “Support Our Troops,” but this is the same shallow or simplistic jingoism as those bumper stickers commanding “America, Love It or Leave It.” If we truly supported our troops, we would house them & we would give them the best medical & psychological care available immediately. I just watched a panel of “Winter Soldiers” testify before members of Congress about the horrors of war they’d experienced in Iraq & Afghanistan and several told how they & many of their comrades turned to alcohol & drugs to escape the pain of what they’d seen & done in war and when they seek help, they are ridiculed, told they’re faking it, & put on waiting lists for up to a year or longer. Some tried to commit suicide & some succeeded.

This is the ugly truth behind the corporate cockroaches’ agenda of perpetual war

 

This is the true pornography and obscenity. The politicians & the military commanders turn these young, idealistic people into killers & then tell them they’re phonies or weaklings and turn their backs on them. Our soldiers are trained to dehumanize the “enemy,” in order to make the killing of the “enemy” easier to live with psychologically yet when they return to America, they are also dehumanized by the very people that told them it was their patriotic duty to go to war & defend America and her values. My family & “friends” have long told me that I’m “too sensitive,” and it has been both a blessing & a curse because I empathize with all the downtrodden of the world e.g. the working class who break their backs for a lifetime & live in a constant state of dread, despair, & pain; the scared immigrants who risk their lives to get here only to be treated like sub-humans & to be exploited by the wealthy;

Could it be that Trump & Co. doesn’t need cheap immigrant labor anymore when we have our prisoners to do the work? see A.L.E.C.

the people of countries that our military has invaded & bombed and killed & maimed their loved ones in the name of democracy & freedom. The corporate cockroaches & their lackeys in the government have duped us all.

 

To sum up, we should all be so outraged that we take to the streets en masse & bring business as usual to a complete standstill because it’s not until the greedy swine holding the reins of power, feel it in their bank accounts, will we begin to reclaim our dignity & honor as a people.

We need to find that spirit we had in the 1960s when we cared about one another

I’m not a religious person but when I see the picture of or an actual lovely nude woman, I feel she is a beautiful reminder of God’s handiwork just as much as those majestic Redwoods or the waves crashing on the Pacific coast. No my friend, the true pornography is that which degrades us as human beings & makes some of us do obscene things because the pain has killed that most precious gift, the human spirit!

Does this offend you more than the little Vietnamese girl burned by U.S. napalm? If so, you should look into your soul.

 

If we persist in our apathy & ignorance, this may come about sooner than we think, especially under Trump!

—Rob DeLoss, November 28, 2008

Willful Ignorance is a Cancer on America

Reminds me of Dick Cheney & his smug arrogance but Trump is a moron!

In a recent essay by Henry Giroux, “Resisting the Weaponization of Ignorance in the Age of Trump,” he starts with; “Ignorance now rules the U.S. Not the simple, if somewhat innocent ignorance that comes from an absence of knowledge, but a malicious ignorance forged in the arrogance of refusing to think hard about an issue.” I wrote this essay originally back in 2013 but wanted to insert this quote by Giroux because it is so right on the mark in this nightmare world with someone as astoundingly stupid as Trump in the oval office. And what’s worse is having to see that smug look on Trump’s face every time I watch the news or that nauseous smirk on his mug which radiates contempt. I believe he’s so self-satisfied because he knows the depth & breadth of the crimes & fraud he’s committed throughout his years. If there were a prize handed out for the most willfully ignorant person in America, Trump would win it hands-down, & willful ignorance is allowing Trump to destroy America!

“Christian” fundamentalists & White Supremacists

 

Preface: before I begin I want to state that my aim is to be briefer than usual because I know that most people aren’t willing to take the time to read anything “too lengthy.” Moreover, many on-line sites that allow you to post your writing, censor how long an article/essay can be. So, don’t criticize me if some of my points aren’t as clear as perhaps you’d like them to be. In fact, I was tempted to just make this a bullet-point list but upon reflection I realized that I must do more to “connect the dots.”

 

My simple definition of “willful ignorance” is that a person purposely blocks out new information, knowledge, or wisdom because it is basically too threatening to their belief structures. And by contrast, “innocent ignorance” simply means that a person doesn’t know something through no fault of their own, they simply have never been exposed to the new information. My thesis is that a pervasive willful ignorance is killing America and I am very concerned not just because I fear about America’s survival but also because America is such a major player in this global game of Monopoly, the survival of our planet is at stake!

an “option” for not having to go to prison for the rest of his life?

The recent revelations regarding our Justice department’s spying on Associated Press reporters motivated me to write this essay. And the general sense of apathy among the general public regarding our government spying on us so blatantly ever since 9/11 truly saddens me. When I bring this issue up to people I know or have recently met, the usual response is “Oh well, I have nothing to worry about because I’m not doing anything wrong!”

Yeah, like what you don’t know about Trump won’t hurt you either

This is mind-boggling to me & I ask myself “Then why have our soldiers died or been maimed in this perpetual state of war we’ve been in my whole life?” The constant refrain I hear is “Support Our Soldiers because they are fighting for our freedom, Democracy, etc.” How can this be when our freedoms, democracy, etc. is being seriously undermined & eliminated altogether here in America?

has prosecuted more whistleblowers than all other presidents combined

 

Case in point; President Obama has prosecuted more “Whistleblowers” than All the presidents who preceded his administration. Like so many other terms or words, the word “whistleblower” has been twisted to the point that it is now almost completely understood as a negative thing. This is truly Orwellian because “whistleblowers” are the true patriots & are doing us a great service by warning us of illegal & immoral actions on the part of our government & the corporate cockroach elite.

 

Some of you may not be familiar with I.F. Stone, George Seldes, Edward R. Murrow, or Robert Scheer but these men were/are amongst a relatively small handful of our greatest whistleblowers & often labeled as “Muckrakers.” Another derisive term implying they just stirred up trouble & threw mud at political officials, corporate Robber Barons, etc. because they were jealous, mean-spirited, unpatriotic, etc. etc. etc.

and he absolutely idolized Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan/Chase the largest of the four most powerful banks in the U.S.

This is another example of willful ignorance and absolutely wrong. These men and women were the most patriotic and courageous people this country has produced because they dared to stand up on their hind-legs and blow the whistle on the thieves in high places by stating publicly how politicians & businessmen were breaking our laws as a nation & the higher laws to which humans are responsible for—the laws of humanity commonly known as ethics!

the only guy who could lose money owning casinos & now he gets to bankrupt the U.S. Treasury?

 

Today’s America is but a dim shadow of those golden ideals & principles that we were told we believed in & practiced as a nation as we went through public school. Most Americans are now either afraid to speak up or are too apathetic & as long as they have their inane television sit-coms, soap operas, sports, & “reality” shows, don’t give a shit! Willful ignorance is now held up as the way to be & well-meaning friends admonish me to not fight the system, it’s futile. I have been fighting this apathy & willful ignorance all my life and it’s been a lonely journey. For example, several years ago when my son was still in high school, his mother & her brother started saying they believed that it would be a good thing for my son to join the military. This scared the Hell out of me because I was in the U.S. Army and came close to being sent to Vietnam & knew after 30 years of serious searching for facts, knowledge, truth, & wisdom the lies, the needless slaughter of Vietnamese innocents, the death of over 55,000 American soldiers, etc. how wrong & how dangerous a game they were playing with my son’s life! (I know that my wife was innocently ignorant on this subject though)

 

So, I sat down at the kitchen table & wrote for two days, (see my post; The Politics of Patriotism https://cockroachconspiracy.com/the-politics-of-patriotism/ )every reason I could think of as to why my son, or any young person should not join the military. And to this day, I haven’t been able to persuade my son to read this outpouring of my soul in an attempt to save his life. Thankfully he didn’t join the military but I still feel the pain & suffering of all those poor, young people who have joined the military and had their souls crushed.

 

Continuing on, this isn’t a self-pity party but merely to substantiate my argument regarding America’s general sense of apathy & willful ignorance. I have been mocked & dismissed for most of my adult life because I am almost always in the minority regarding these issues & people take comfort & believe they must be right because they are in the majority when arguments arise about these topics. If we had more courageous journalists like those I mentioned earlier, then perhaps we could have averted invading Iraq and all the horrible aftermath of that war of choice?

 

Furthermore, I contend that because of our general sense of apathy and our willful ignorance, the powers that be have been, are, & will continue to erode & destroy America as a nation. And lest you think me an alarmist, conspiracy nut, or whatever, I challenge you to do a little research for yourself starting with the late, great Gore Vidal and his book “Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.” In this simple little book, Vidal lists the over 200 military incursions or whatever you care to refer to them as, since 1945. Here is a blurb relevant to this point:

 

In all, the United States has only made 11 separate formal declarations of war against foreign nations encompassing 5 wars.

  1. War with Great Britain 1812 (Act of June 18, 1812, House 79-49; Senate 19-13)
  2. War with Mexico 1846 (Act of May 13, 1846, House 174-14; Senate 40-2)
  3. War with Spain 1898 (Act of April 25, 1898, House & Senate voice votes)
  4. War with Germany 1917 (Act of April 6, 1917, House 373-50; Senate 82-6)
  5. War with Austria-Hungary 1917 (Act of December 7, 1917, House 365-1; Senate 74-0))
  6. War with Japan 1941 (Act of December 8, 1941, House 388-1; Senate 82-0)
  7. War with Germany 1941 (Act of December 11, 1941, House 393-0; Senate 88-0)
  8. War with Italy 1941 (Act of December 11, 1941, House 399-0; Senate 90-0)
  9. War with Bulgaria 1942 (Act of June 5, 1942, House 357-0; Senate 73-0)
  10. War with Hungary 1942 (Act of June 5, 1942, House 360-0; Senate 73-0)
  11. War with Rumania 1942 (Act of June 5, 1942, House 361-0; Senate 73-0)9

Since 1942, of course the United States has not led the world in a seventy-years’ peace. Despite Roosevelt’s relative ease in obtaining six formal declarations of war, since World War Two Americans have been drawn time and time again into war without a congressional declaration. Gore Vidal commented:

“Since V-J Day 1945 (‘Victory over Japan’ and the end of World War II), we have been engaged in what the historian Charles A. Beard called ‘perpetual war for perpetual peace.’ I have occasionally referred to our ‘enemy of the month club’: each month we are confronted by a new horrendous enemy at whom we must strike before he destroys us.”

Vidal goes on to list several hundred wars and operations conducted against Communism, terrorism, drugs, or as he puts it, “sometimes nothing much” that occurred between Pearl Harbor and September 11, 2001.  Based on casualties alone the costliest conflicts following the last official declaration of war include the Korean War with 33,686, the Vietnam War with 47,424, Iraq War with 3,542 and Afghanistan at greater than 2,000.  http://inconvenienthistory.com/archive/2013/volume_5/number_1/war_is_declared.php 

 

 

And with the latest brainstorm on the part of the Pentagon & the politicians, we now “embed” our journalists in military units so they can “report” the facts of war protected by the units they are embedded with. Is it just me or does anyone else see the dangers inherent in this new version of war coverage by journalists? This is a very clever tactic designed to keep an even tighter leash on journalists by making them dependent on soldiers for their very lives, journalists will naturally be a lot more reluctant to report on abuses, crimes, etc. committed by the soldiers they are embedded with. And as a result, we, the American public will be left even more in the dark regarding the truth about the wars, police actions, incursions, etc. that we are continually involved in around the globe.

” We learned that the United States has approximately 800 formal military bases in 80 countries, a number that could exceed 1,000 if you count troops stationed at embassies and missions and so-called “lily-pond” bases, with some 138,000 soldiers stationed around the globe. David Vine, author of Base Nation: How U.S. Military Bases Overseas Harm America and the World,” https://www.thenation.com/article/the-us-has-military-bases-in-172-countries-all-of-them-m

 

One of the most pernicious myths about the Vietnam war is that it was the “liberal media” which caused us to lose that war because they were broadcasting all those horrible images of war back to our homes and as families sat around the T.V. and watched those images day in and day out, Americans gradually began to turn against the war. The movie “The Killing Fields” showed how bogus this claim was because it revealed the fact that most of the journalists covering the Vietnam war would wait until after a battle and the military had brought them to the battle scene after it had been “cleaned-up” and take their pictures & accept the military commanders’ version of what happened and dutifully transcribe it for their newspapers. Noam Chomsky clearly proved the falsity of these claims and the myths regarding the liberal opposition to the Vietnam war, etc. And again, because i don’t have the space to go into great depth, you’ll have to check out the truth of what I claim for yourself.

 

The myth or “truism” that there is a “liberal media bias” in America is just that, a myth. And it has been mostly been thanks to FOX News and the “mainstream” or corporate media which have vested interests in maintaining the status quo in America. It’s very well known that FOX News, especially during the Gulf war and the Iraq war, took their daily “talking points” directly from the White House so as to keep all their talking heads on the same page and hammering the same pack of lies day in and day out. And this brings me to an extremely important point e.g. just because a newscaster, a politician, or anyone keeps on repeating something it’s not necessarily true or a fact. I have gone around and round with people, including my ex-wife, on this matter and in particular, far too many naive people don’t recognize the difference between opinion and objective fact. Facts can be backed up or substantiated and yes everyone has a right to their opinion but not all opinions are valid or perhaps I should say, equally valid. FOX News is the farthest thing from news because it is mostly opinionated, loud-mouth bullies who believe that if they scream loud enough to drown out their disagreeing guests, they’re right and the guest has been proven wrong. Moreover, even sticking to mere opinions, if one person in an argument is arguing about a subject they have formally studied for years & have earned a degree in the subject is arguing with someone else who has never even read a book on the subject, their opinions are not equally valid. One is arguing from knowledge & experience and the other is arguing from an emotional perspective or a set of beliefs. And this is not elitist but simply logical or scholarly and is the basis for most of human progress. I know that for a lot of people I have met over the course of my adult life, this point regarding the validity of arguments is a bitter or hard pill to swallow. It sounds very arrogant of me to make such statements but consider it from this point of view if you will; I have next to no knowledge when it comes to mechanical aptitude or matters and if I tried telling some guy who had 30 years of experience as a mechanic that he was definitely wrong about some mechanical problem I was having, it would be just as absurd for him to tell me I was off my nut about some political issue which I had spent 30 years of my life studying.

 

Naturally, the power elite or the 1% want to keep the general public as ignorant as possible because it’s much easier to control an ignorant populace than a well-informed one. Why do you think they cracked down so hard on the Occupy Wall St. movement? These protestors were constantly derided on FOX News as dirty, lazy, young kids who didn’t want to work, etc. They weren’t allowed to use microphones at their meetings, they weren’t allowed to even carry a backpack but at the Tea Party rallies, they were allowed to use microphones, they could even bring their guns, and they were covered by the corporate media because they were the dupes of FOX News and the so-called conservative Republican party. Free speech in America? Yeah, right. Only if you agree with the corporate cockroaches are you allowed to be heard.

 

I didn’t start listening to what was going on politically until Ronald Reagan became president because I grew up in L.A. and I’d seen what he’d done as governor of California. Reagan the “great communicator,” cracked-down on student protestors with a vengeance & probably would’ve like to have them all shot down like dogs.

If you were rich, you loved Reagan, if you were poor, you knew he was the enemy of the people

So, when he became president I got worried and ever since his presidency, there has been a steady & stealthy building of power on the side of the rich in America. They built a network of think tanks and hammered away at the American public with their rhetoric & propaganda telling the public ad nauseam that it was the government that was making their lives tough & it was the liberals, the students, the illegal immigrants, gays, in short, anyone who wasn’t rich was the problem.

Reagan’s firing of air traffic controllers for life signaled corporate America it’s open season on unions

 

And just as Hitler’s minister of propaganda, joseph Goebbels realized, the more you repeat a lie and the greater the lie, the more people will accept it as truth. The Right-wing extremists in America now have the microphone almost exclusively & when people like myself who have been paying attention, try to speak up, we are shouted down as communists, terrorists, etc. It’s gotten so bad e.g. we’ve become such a corporatocracy that the Democratic party which once stood for the working Americans has now almost completely gone over to the corporate controlled side.

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY WAS ONCE THE PARTY OF THE NEW DEAL and the ally of organized labor. But by the time of Bill Clinton’s presidency, it had become the enemy of New Deal programs like welfare and Social Security and the champion of free trade deals. What explains this apparent reversal?….According to Frank, popular explanations which blame corporate lobby groups and the growing power of money in politics are insufficient. Frank instead points to a decision by Democratic Party elites in the 1970s to marginalize labor unions and transform from the party of the working class to the party of the professional class.” http://inthesetimes.com/features/listen-liberal-thomas-frank-democratic-party-elites (In a nutshell my imaginary reader, this is why we’re so screwed today & have a supposed billionaire posing as a populist in the White House.)

 

I thought I was pretty savvy politically speaking but Obama even fooled me but only for a few weeks. After he was elected and appointed Bernanke, Summers, & Geithner to the top financial & economic positions in America, I knew I & America had been duped yet again. And if you still need convincing of this, as many “liberals” do, note Obama’s speech where he said he wasn’t interested in “looking back” in reference to calls for Bush, Cheney, et al being prosecuted for lying us into the Iraq war and wrecking the U.S. economy. Yet Obama is going after ‘Whistleblowers’ with a vengeance & he has prosecuted those who are trying to protect America more than all the other presidents did in total. Obama the Oreo as I call him (black on the outside, white on the inside) not only hasn’t given up any of the illegal expanded powers of the presidency that Georgie Bush stole, he has expanded the imperial presidency and he personally participates in a weekly meeting where he & his advisors act as judge, jurors, & executioners as they select people to assassinate around the world, even American citizens.

 

At the risk of being dismissed as just another “conspiracy nut,” I think all these racist attacks against Obama on FOX News may serve the financial elite’s hidden agenda because it keeps the yokels, both the innocently ignorant & the willfully ignorant occupied & focusing their anger on Obama rather than the truly heinous criminal class who are sucking the lifeblood out of America. We have witnessed the largest transfer of wealth from the poor, the working class, & the middle class to the obscenely wealthy in the top 1% of our population over the past 30 years or so. The traitors at the top have almost completely eliminated unions, have outsourced almost every manufacturing plant that used to be in America, have gained ever more tax breaks, have made our land, air, & water toxic, and are now focused on getting their bloody talons on Social Security & completely gutting Medicare & privatizing our public education system.

 

By keeping the ignorant public focused on guns & gays & abortion, they have emptied the federal treasury and bankrupted America & turned us into a Third World nation. And the horrific events of 9/11 were the perfect excuse for them to hide their sinister agenda behind. With the passage overnight with no Congressional review & very few even took the time to read it, of The Patriot Act and Homeland Security, they have almost completely eviscerated our Constitution & Bill of Rights. We more closely resemble Stalinist Russia than the America I was born into in the 1950s. We hear the talking heads on television, the political pundits, the politicians, the corporate crocodile C.E.O.s, the televangelist preachers, etc. constantly telling us how great America is and how proud we should be of our soldiers fighting in the steady stream of wars overseas for freedom & democracy right? So then why are so much less free here in America? We are truly living that book by George Orwell “1984” here in the United States in 2013.

 

Again, as Gore Vidal has pointed out, just about every month there is some new enemy of the month and we must again spend billions of dollars fighting this never-ending stream of villains. As they slash our programs that were supposed to act as a Social Safety Net such as Head Start, food stamps, welfare, health care, etc. they keep spending billions & trillions on weapons systems that often don’t work & kill our own soldiers. They lose pallets of money in Iraq. They pay warlords in Afghanistan hundreds of thousands of dollars month in, month out for the past decade, those same warlords who also control the poppy fields that produce the majority of the world’s heroin. Yeah, it must be nice to be stupid & not think about all these blatant contradictions & hypocrisies that are going on, but this is why you’re being fucked & losing everything but don’t strain your brain, and don’t be surprised when you join the millions of other homeless haunting the landscape.

We were forced to bail-out the Wall St. wolves and the Banks too big to fail as they stole our homes, our pensions, our health care, our self-respect & dignity but hey, let’s go beat up some gays, some illegals, some Occupy Wall St. protestors because they are the ones causing our pain.

 

If you want to be a “success” in America, it’s really simple, all you have to do is ignore your conscience & be as cutthroat, ruthless, cold-blooded as you can be. Look at Colin Powell who made it up the ranks to the highest position in the military services. He showed the powers that be that he was their boy back in the 1960s when he was sent to investigate the My Lai Massacre and returned a report saying nothing had happened or no wrongdoing had been done. If you’re tired of being ignorant about the Vietnam war, check out a book by Lt. Colonel David L. Hackworth called “About Face.” This guy was a true Audie Murphy and had been wounded more times than is almost believable. He fought in N. Korea, Vietnam, etc. and after a few years of serving in Vietnam, he couldn’t take the lies & the waste of human life anymore and started speaking out and finally resigned in disgust. And Lt. Colonel David L. Hackworth was the most decorated soldier of his time & created and commanded a unit he called ‘Tiger Force’ which used guerrilla warfare tactics to fight against the Vietnamese guerrillas.

 

Furthermore, we have the case of another highly respected officer who tried also to wake up our military commanders in the Pentagon & the political leadership as to the folly of our involvement in Vietnam:

 

John Paul Vann became an adviser to the Saigon regime in the early 1960s. He was an ardent critic of how the war was fought, both on the part of the Saigon regime, which he viewed as corrupt and incompetent, and, as time went by, increasingly, on the part of the U.S. military. In particular, he was critical of the U.S. military command, especially under William Westmoreland, and their inability to adapt to the fact that they were facing a popular guerrilla movement while backing a corrupt regime. He argued that many of the tactics employed (for example the strategic hamlet relocation) further alienated the population and thus were counterproductive to U.S. objectives. Often he was unable to influence the military command but used the Saigon press corps including Neil Sheehan, David Halberstam and Malcolm Browne to disseminate his views.

The volume begins with a prologue giving an account of Vann’s funeral on June 16, 1972, following his death in a helicopter accident in Vietnam. The author, Sheehan, a personal friend, was present. The subsequent account is divided into seven “books” detailing Vann’s career in Vietnam and America’s involvement in the conflict. Book I tell of Vann’s assignment to Vietnam in 1962. Book II “The Antecedents to a Confrontation” tells of the origin of the Vietnam War. Book III gives a detailed account of the shambolic Battle of Ap Bac on January 2, 1963 in which the South Vietnamese army suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Viet Cong. Book IV details Vann’s criticism of the way the war was being fought, his conflict with the U.S. military command and his transfer back to America. Book V tracks back to give Vann’s personal history before his involvement in the war. In the final chapters, Books VI and VII give an account of Vann’s return to Vietnam in 1965 and his doomed attempt to implement a war winning formula for the beleaguered U.S. army and how he eventually compromised with the military system he once criticized.

(A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam)

 

But of course, if you don’t mind sending your sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, fathers, or mothers to slaughter or being maimed for life in these wars to make the rich even richer then by all means enjoy your blissful ignorance! Moreover, we are kept in the dark about the epidemic of sexual assaults against not only women in the military services but of men as well. We are also ignorant of the fact that a good percentage of the homeless wandering our streets like ghosts on the landscape are veterans who were used, chewed-up and spit out on the street with little to no assistance by the government who had promised them the world to get them to enlist.

 

As for me, I will continue to speak out, to argue, to scream about the true betrayers of the American promise, the real traitors like the politicians, the top officers in the Pentagon, the corporate cockroaches, & the cowards who crow so brazenly on television. Against the wolves in sheep’s clothing claiming to be Christians as they preach hatred, fear, & call for the murder of those whom they don’t agree with. Against the Bush administration who “leaked” Valerie Plame’s identity but weren’t prosecuted by Obama, the Constitutional law professor. True Christians know that Jesus focused all his time & energy on taking care of the homeless, the sick & disabled, those shunned by society such as the prostitutes, etc. and that he detested the rich for their greed, oppression of the poor, & their apathy. And I know what the true agenda or the motives behind the prosecution of whistleblowers are, it’s to silence the true patriots who sound the alarm warning us, the willfully ignorant, that the power elite are killing America just as surely as an inoperable cancer but under the guise of National Security. But what they mean by National Security is the military/industrial/congressional complex that gives the overwhelming majority of our tax dollars to the already obscenely wealthy while impoverishing the rest of us, the 99% forced to work for slave wages & pay taxes or be imprisoned! I choose to inform myself and will fight to inform others but of course if you prefer to be willingly ignorant, there’s nothing to be done and I feel no sympathy for you as you wither & die!

—Rob DeLoss, Gearhart, Oregon, May 16, 2013

 

“Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth — more than ruin — more even than death…. Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible, thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habit. Thought looks into the pit of hell and is not afraid. Thought is great and swift and free, the light of the world, and the chief glory of man.”

—Bertrand Russell, winner of the Nobel Prize

 

 

 

           

 

           

           

           

 

           

 

 

Anti-Intellectualism & Our Extinction

 

 

To Be or Not to Be, the haunting existential question that plagued Hamlet’s soul has now morphed into a universal nightmare stalking us all in our waking hours as well as in our nightmares. And what is the “Christian fundamentalists’” response? Celebration & thanks be to God.

Happiness is a Warm Gun

 

This is the beast drooling anxious to devour all that it can’t understand and thus fears: the freedom to experiment with one’s own life; the freedom to witness new sights, different voices, fumbling caresses, pungent as well as pleasant fragrances, the freedom to taste the bitter & the sweet; the liberty to explore the galaxies of one’s own mind & soul.

 

Any religion that demands the absolute inhibition of all that makes us human is an abomination & a blasphemy against life. It is sacrilegious to lock our souls, our spirits, our bodies in a coat of armor that cuts us off from all the life forces on this planet.

flower children

 

It is only through trial and error, pain and pleasure & the continual getting up again from the floor, that allows us to see our true beauty as free seekers of the divine within us like Michelangelo’s “David,” waiting within the uncarved marble.

at one with Mother Nature

 

These self-proclaimed “Warriors for God,” or America’s “Christian” fundamentalists have much in common with the Tea Party that had such a devastating impact on the G.O.P. several years ago & still does. As some have dubbed them i.e. the Tea Party, they are in effect, America’s Taliban. Yet because they call themselves Christians, few pay attention to their activities. This is a serious mistake on all our parts because they pose a very real threat to America’s survival and by extension, to the planet’s survival. This danger is every bit as real as the destruction we are all aware of from the Islamic fundamentalists or jihadists. And whether “Christian” fundamentalists or “Islamic” fundamentalists, they have perverted the true meaning of their religions to justify their heinous crimes against humanity.

 

And because I am an American, I will analyze this frightening phenomenon that has taken such strong root here in the nation that proclaims to be the home of the free & land of the brave.

 

The common thread that connects all fundamentalists whether they be Christian, Islamic, Jewish, or whatever, is anti-intellectualism. Let’s take a closer look, but first I want to list the main attributes of the American Tea Party which the lead character in the brilliant Aaron Sorkin’s short-lived but great series, “The Newsroom,” listed:

 

Ideological purity, compromise as weakness, a fundamentalist belief in scriptural literalism, denying science, unmoved by facts, undeterred by new information, a hostile fear of progress, a demonization of education, a need to control women’s bodies, severe xenophobia, tribal mentality, intolerance of dissent, & a pathological hatred of the U.S. government.

If he’s your idea of greatness, you’ve set a very low bar

 

I wanted to list these attributes of the Tea Party because they are basically the same for the so-called, American “Christian” fundamentalists. I can’t help but wonder if perhaps Sorkin referred to the Tea Party instead of the “Christian” fundamentalists because that would’ve been too hot of a button to push with these crazies? To be honest with you my friend, I sure wish all these nut-jobs would just go off to some deserted island to live together since they hate all of us so much. But we aren’t so lucky and they are determined to make all our lives a living Hell in their religious zealotry to either convert us or kill us in the name of their “loving” God.

Onward Christian soldiers leading us to Armageddon

 

Some refer to this as a “culture war,” but I feel that is much too benign a term. These people are dead serious & truly feel themselves & everything they believe in is under attack. Yeah, they are the aggressors but they like to portray themselves as the helpless victims. The more extreme among them believe it’s okay to murder doctors who perform abortions & physically assault women who seek an abortion. Yep! They yearn for the good, old days when girls & women were forced to seek out some back-alley butcher who often botched the job so badly that women bled to death or were unable to ever have children in the future should they want to.

“Christian” hypocrisy on full display

 

As mentioned above, these Neanderthals have a hostile fear of progress & for them, progress is anything that contradicts their childish beliefs or differs from them. This is why I suggest that if you consider their belief system as a whole, it boils down to a vicious anti-intellectualism. And because anti-intellectualism is the key to understanding where these dangerous people are coming from, let me share with you, what it is.

another lovely example of “Christian” anti-intellectualism (the Spanish Inquisition)

 

I can’t remember where I heard it but many years ago, I read something to the effect that anyone who reads at or is educated beyond the fifth or sixth grade is considered suspect. This is a good place to start because it reveals the absurdity of the basic tenets of anti-intellectualism. It obviously hasn’t dawned on them that just about everything they use in their daily lives, was invented by people educated far beyond the sixth grade i.e. cars, planes, televisions, computers, medicines, etc. etc. etc.

 

Moreover, there is a deeply ingrained distrust of all things intellectual as just useless banter amongst the aristocrats. Again, they reveal their ignorance & don’t consider our Constitution as anything special either. For these mental midgets, there is only one book worthy of study, do I need to tell you what that book is? If you want to have a bit of fun, try telling one of these holy-rollers that their Christianity owes a huge debt to Plato’s philosophy but be ready, because they might physically assault you. Personally, I have a lot more respect for Jesuits because at least they spent their lives in serious, scholarly pursuits to be able to back up their beliefs. It’s far easier of course to just reject what you haven’t even bothered to try to wrestle with intellectually. And this is why I say that they’re not only morally bankrupt, they’re intellectual cowards & mental weaklings as well.

The real witch-hunt is by Trump & his “Christians”

 

This brings me to one of my pet peeves about these people so arrogant in their willful ignorance that it causes my blood to boil. Conservatively, over the past 30 years roughly, I have spent at least 49,000 hours in serious pursuit of knowledge and wisdom yet some of these airheads have the audacity to dismiss all my blood, sweat, & tears from my efforts with trite comments like; Well, I know better because God told me so. Such breathtakingly spectacular stupidity is simply beyond belief yet they smugly stroll down the street absolutely sure they have the truth & I’m the deluded one.

don’t forget how “Christians” converted Native Americans & Pacific Islanders almost to complete genocide

 

You see, one of the things that is beyond their comprehension is what’s called the paradox of learning i.e. the more your knowledge expands, the more you become aware of just how little you know & how much more knowledge, wisdom, and truth there is for us to learn. The feeble-minded think that the more you learn, the more confident you should become & they can’t comprehend that it’s only through our humility that we grow intellectually. You’d think they’d be able to grasp this since Jesus often speaks about the need for our humbleness.

Asimov wrote over 500 books & inspired many to become scientists, biologists, chemists, etc.

“Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.’” —Isaac Asimov (this is Trump & his followers in spades!)

 

Inversely or conversely, this is precisely why it’s so hard to reach these people on a rational level i.e. the more ignorant they are, the greater their walls of ignorance & superstition that surrounds them. And the more ignorant people are, the easier it is for unscrupulous charlatans to manipulate them. Just consider the many televangelists who ripped their congregations off & lived like jet-setters while screwing prostitutes, living in mansions, etc. like Jim & Tammy Bakker, Jimmy Swaggart, Pat Robertson who is supposedly worth $100 million. Yep, this is clear evidence of just how stupid people can be in that they’ll give their hard-earned money to these scum who swear that the Lord speaks to them & tells them that their congregations should give them their money because they’re doing the Lord’s work.

Jim Bakker was sent to prison but he’s out & back at it again (“Christian” fundamentalists ignorance knows no limits)

 

Undeniably, we are at an extremely critical juncture in not only our country’s history but in the history of the world because Donald Trump is sitting in the oval office. I argue this point for several reasons which I’ll soon get into but firstly because Trump has coincidentally become a born-again Christian just a few months before he started his campaign to become president. So, here we can see prima facie evidence of not only how dumb these “Christians” are for believing Trump is a Christian but also just how shallow their beliefs, values, & principles are.

“Christian” values on display for all the world to see

 

Trump can openly brag on national television that he gets away with grabbing women by their pussies & that he has walked right into beauty pageant contestants’ dressing rooms many times so he could see them naked or semi-nude. He committed adultery many times, lies & cheats his employees, is racist, has manipulated banks & local politicians to get his casinos built but when they failed, he walks away denying responsibility, etc. etc. etc. He is perhaps the vilest person to ever serve as our president & there isn’t a Christian bone in his body but his fan club doesn’t care because he claims to be their champion. And Mike Pence sits behind him like the Cheshire Cat just smugly waiting for his chance to take over and really implement their agenda of oppression against all of us who don’t believe in their hypocritical religiosity.

a man of integrity? Yeah, right!

 

The fact that millions of these faux Christians so passionately proclaim Trump their hero quite frankly, scares the Hell out of me! History is replete with examples of insane & outrageous leaders who were adept at public speaking & the psychological manipulation of their citizens, Hitler is the first example that comes to mind in this regard. And just as in pre-Nazi Germany, most of their citizens dismissed him as a nutcase who would never mount to anything. Trump has clearly revealed his fondness for authoritarians & dictators and harbors grand illusions of becoming our “strong-man.”

Jim Jones was very charismatic also, that is, right up till they drank the kool-aid

He openly flouts not only the social norms for our presidents i.e. putting his financial interests aside while president, showing an interest in the workings of our government by reading his daily briefings, etc. He shows no intellectual curiosity whatsoever & spends his days like the typical teenager watching television & tweeting. To think that this vile, profane buffoon has the codes to our nuclear weapons is a horrific nightmare. But again, his “Christian” base isn’t worried because they welcome the end of the world & can’t wait to see God. If only they’d all go again to some deserted island and commit suicide & leave the rest of us alone who enjoy living.

 

Trump and his born -again baboons share a mutual distrust & hatred of intellectuals. For Trump, his hatred of intellectuals is bound-up with the personal rejection he received from New York’s cultural elite as a young man trying to make a name for himself. And something occurred to me the other day regarding this matter, for some reason, in our educational system, we stop teaching students how to read once they’ve reached the fourth grade basically. And those who haven’t mastered the skills of reading proficiently by fourth grade start a gradual downhill slope from there on. After third grade, reading is the core skill necessary for all other learning & my guess is that Donald was one of those who didn’t master reading by fourth grade and he has been covering-up this fact all his life?

This would go a long way in terms of explaining Trump’s open hostility towards those he considers elitists i.e. anyone who criticizes him or shows him to be an ignorant fool. Moreover, it also shows why he is so fond of tyrants i.e. you can silence your critics by jailing them or having them killed if you’re an authoritarian say like Duterte in the Philippines who tells his police & military to simply shoot anyone they suspect of being a drug trafficker. Trump’s ego is so fragile that he crumbles each & every time someone makes fun of him, especially on the national scene. But his loyal “Christians,” and his racist, Neo-Nazi fan club buoy his spirits so he loves putting on his rallies as if he were still running for the office of which he holds.

how blind can people be???

 

Besides the very real threat to our survival as a species posed by this man-child, would be king with his finger on the nuclear trigger is the equally real danger our planet is facing from climate destruction. Of course, Donald of the Duck Dynasty Klan, like his fellow “Christian” Klansmen, doesn’t give a shit about our dying planet because his pea-brain can only think in terms of instant gratification like the next Big Mac. He and his fellow cretins live only for today & could care less about their or our future. Shows how much they love their children & their grandchildren, doesn’t it? And I guess they don’t care that there will soon be no places left to go camping with their families, sailing on their yachts, etc. Yep! Just one living Hell right here on earth. But why do we all have to pay for their greed & ignorance? Well obviously, if we don’t want to see this nightmare come true, we need to get off our couches & turn off the sports drug programs and get out in the streets protesting against our common destruction & for a livable planet.

 

In conclusion, I just read a short article titled; “Donald Trump’s revolution against America’s intellectuals.” I thought it would be interesting & relevant to this essay that I’m writing but I have to call Bull-shit on its author! In brief, he posits the familiar claim that Trump won because people are tired of being “politically correct” and mocked for being dumb or called stupid. He goes on to state that many intellectuals are Jewish and that intellectuals in general are an arrogant clique or caste so-to-speak. Well duh! If you’ve spent your life in scholarly pursuits, wouldn’t you want to hang-out with other scholars so you can share & compare thoughts?

 

I have the misfortune of being from a poor, working-class, single parent family but I have spent my life educating myself. And my fate is that when I hang out at the local pub, I am not allowed to speak about politics because of the social taboo against it in this land of freedom & democracy. Yet, sometimes I can get away with speaking about these serious matters and I have seen the light come on in people’s eyes. Some have told me that our conversation was the best they’ve had in years. I believe most people are hungry for knowledge but yes, we, who are better educated need to be sensitive to people’s feelings and not make them feel like they’re being talked down to.

Should she be forced to be silent as well?

 

But for this author to argue that this resentment justifies the silencing of America’s intellectuals is a perverse turning of the table i.e. we’re supposed to keep our mouths shut and let the racists spew their bile? Fuck that! I am not a Christian but I know a thing or two and Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount summed it up nicely.

True Christianity in a nut-shell

We are to care for the oppressed, the hungry, etc., not threaten them & ignore them. What Trump and his fellow “Christians,” conveniently overlook is the fact that the greatest welfare cheats are the “Defense contractors” who are draining our national treasury. Yeah, it’s much easier to beat-up on the poor who have been screwed every which way possible. So, for these blind zealots for Trump, your belief that he is your savior shows how monumentally stupid you are because he gave the obscenely wealthy, like himself, another massive tax break while sticking it to you rubes!

The “Defense Contractors” are the true Welfare Queens!
The darkest days of my life until I lost my wife

 

Finally, this anti-intellectualism seems to boil down to a basic inferiority complex on the part of all those who feel dumb. When I was in my early 20s and went to Europe for the first time—and before you say; “Aha! Another elitist” yeah, right. I slept on park benches, went hungry for three days, dug ditches, moved furniture, etc. —but I met a young guy who knew more about American history, literature, politics, philosophy, etc. but he wasn’t arrogant about it. I picked his brain so-to-speak and asked him about books & authors I should check out and that was my intellectual awakening. You see, the more common reaction when people meet someone they sense is smarter than they are, is to reject them by either mocking them or walking away. So again, if you feel stupid, that’s a clue that you have work to do and you should be happy because you know what to do & the more you learn, the better you’ll feel about yourself. It only took me 14 years to earn my B.A. in English literature which normally takes four years to complete but I was born on the wrong side of the tracks and wouldn’t have it any other way. And it tasted so sweet proving all my “friends” and family members wrong who had labeled me a quitter and a loser!

Knowledge is Power!

 

 

 

Alternative media is obviously crucial for us to inform ourselves but the most important tool for empowering ourselves is a solid grounding in critical and analytical thinking skills. There are several factors which have contributed to making us a citizenry so easily manipulated intellectually. The Christian fundamentalists assault on Secular Humanism, the anti-intellectualism strain throughout our history that Richard Hofstadter so eloquently detailed, the history of how our public educational system was formed, the betrayal of the U.S. public by our ‘mainstream media,’ and the ultimate culprit i.e. the global corporations. Because of the need for brevity, I can only give a thumbnail sketch and will restrict my focus to our public educational system to which I owe John Taylor Gatto a great debt of gratitude. I highly recommend his book The Underground History of American Education . I feel qualified to speak on educational matters because of my 15 years working in the field as tutor, substitute teacher, adult education teacher in ESL (English as a Second Language), teaching assistant in various multi-handicapped programs, etc. I took 14 years to earn my B.A. in English literature and I’ve been a voracious reader, collector, and note writer in the blank pages of my books. And I have traveled a fair amount in Europe and across America.

Western civilization owes Ancient Athens a tremendous debt

 

Okay, here is a simplistic overview of how we have arrived at this pathetic state of affairs in our public educational systems which I culled from Gatto’s book. By the way, I have dissected his book thoroughly and I’m now using quotes from it in a book I am writing. Just to let you know that this essay wasn’t written just off the cuff.

 

“The secret of American schooling is that it doesn’t teach the way children learn and it isn’t supposed to. It took seven years of reading and reflection to finally figure out that mass schooling of the young by force was a creation of the four great coal powers of the 19th century. Nearly 100 years later, on April 11, 1933, Max Mason, president of the Rockefeller Foundation, announced to insiders that a comprehensive national program was underway to allow, in Mason’s words, ‘the control of human behavior.’ (page xvi)

 

Here is a brief sketch of each of the four men who owned the great coal powers. “Andrew Carnegie. An enthusiastic Darwinist and early proponent of planned economy and society, reunion with Great Britain. Beatrice Webb, the Fabian, called him ‘a slimy little reptile: Carnegie Endowments. J.P. Morgan. The foremost Anglican layman in the world. Worked resolutely for the restoration of a class system in America, and Anglo-American sovereignty worldwide. John D. Rockefeller Sr. ‘Survival of the fittest is nature’s way of producing beauty, ‘said Rockefeller. As a principal stockholder in U.S. Steel, he approved of school experiments in Gary, Indiana, to dumb down curriculum, seek more effective means of mind control. Rockefeller Foundation. Henry Ford. ‘I regard Henry Ford as my inspiration,’ Hitler told a Detroit newspaper in 1931. In July, 1938, automaker Ford received the Grand Cross of the Golden Eagle, highest award the German government could give a foreigner. Lenin acknowledged his debt to Ford’s genius. Ford Foundation.” (pg. 36)

 

Carnegie’s survival of the fittest philosophy is the rationalization the greedy and unethical corporate crooks use to justify their destruction of the environment and their exploitation of people around the world i.e. the law of the jungle. J.P. Morgan got his wish regarding establishing a class system in America which is evident in the perpetuation of poverty in inner city schools largely due to the grossly inferior public schools there as contrasted with the public schools in cities like Beverly Hills.

 

The Gary Plan which was approved by Rockefeller boiled down to …” school subjects were departmentalized; this required movement of students from room to room on a regular basis so that all building spaces were in constant use. Bells would ring and just as with Pavlov’s salivating dog, children would shift out of their seats and lurch toward yet another class.” (pg. 187)

 

The Gary Plan was a very sinister assault on our psyches as students. By arbitrarily dissecting the learning process, they replaced the focus of public schools from learning to the new priority of conformity to schedules by using bells to condition students for their future as wage slaves in the manufacturing sector. It also made it harder for students to see the interconnectedness of many academic subjects thereby dumbing students down and making the learning experience duller and more lifeless.

 

Of course, Ford’s assembly line method of production can be seen in how our public schools are organized and how they just crank out students like inanimate objects with no regard for their uniqueness as individuals. In addition, this contributed to the emphasis on specialization which has greatly amplified the isolation of individuals and the breakdown of communication between professionals. This has not only been very costly in business terms but even more so in personal and social costs. It has led to our ability to create nuclear weapons but to divorce ourselves from the ethical ramifications of our inventions.

 

Next in this essay on the ‘dumbing down’ of America is the importation of the Prussian model of schooling with the work of Frederick W. Taylor who attended an aristocratic German academy and was greatly impressed because the Prussians had defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Jena. Here is a list of Taylor’s ‘Principles of Scientific Management’ which I’m sure you’ll recognize in our public schools: 1) A regimen of science, not rule of thumb. 2)An emphasis on harmony, not the discord of competition. 3)An insistence on cooperation, not individualism. 4)A fixation on maximum output. 5)The development of each man to his greatest productivity.” (pg. 172)

 

As a result of this Prussian system of conditioning we can see that science has been elevated over the humanities and hence our technological superiority but our general cultural ignorance. Also, hypocritically these social engineers and lying manipulators of the masses indoctrinate us in public schools to cooperate so when we get out in the real world we’ll be more manageable or submissive to the ruling class. Furthermore, our individualism—our once proud national characteristic—is undermined and makes us more susceptible to the collective mindset i.e. nationalism and consumerism. Obviously, the obsession with maximum output reflects our real value to the powers that be. They don’t care and in fact they seek to block us from realizing our full potentials.

 

This “adoption of business organization by schools” because “before 1900, school boards were large, clumsy organizations, with a seat available to represent every interest (they often had 30 to 50 members). A great transformation was engineered in the first decade of the 20th century, however, and after 1910 they were dominated by businessmen, lawyers, real estate men, and politicians…. Carnegie ‘the demand of the age is for practical education.’ “(pg. 174-75)

 

Though there are many layers in the educational bureaucracy, local school boards have a very significant influence on educational policies. And it is common wisdom how unethical and greedy businessmen, lawyers, and politicians are so, is it any wonder that schools have been designed to serve the needs of the Robber Barons and not the needs of the people?

Trump’s “base” wish they could’ve afforded to be ripped off by him

Moreover, is it any wonder that Americans prize practicality over intellectual talents when we started as a self-reliant people noted for our rugged individualism? And when such ‘successful’ businessmen as Carnegie, Rockefeller, Ford, & J.P. Morgan advise people that the practical skills and common sense are all they need to succeed in life, the gullible and naïve often fall for it.

the “Super bankers” who robbed us & received bonuses for doing so

 

Unfortunately, because so many Americans believed the propaganda of the powerful and specialized in their educational pursuits rather than generalized like true champions of mankind like Bucky Fuller advised, many people graduate college only to find there is a glut of graduates in their field and they are not able to find work. Richard Barnet gives us a glimpse of the truth behind the propaganda. “The problem is starkly simple. An astonishingly large and increasing number of human beings are not needed or wanted to make the goods or provide the services that the paying customers of the world can afford.” (pg. 260, Global Reach: The Power of the Multinational Corporations, Richard J. Barnet & Ronald E. Muller)

 

This rather depressing statement portends of the future of globalization and I don’t believe for one minute their claims that the globalization of the world will even out the distri