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.