Very sad that this is reality

Michael Parenti is one of the most informed authors of our time. He is infamous for speaking the truth everyone should hear.  He has once again stated truth that will make you cringe when you read it.
 

Through much of history the abnormal has been the norm. This is a paradox to which we should attend. Aberrations, so plentiful as to form a terrible normality of their own, descend upon us with frightful consistency.

And so it begins...

I could never do justice to what this man says but I will offer just a few snippets in hopes that you would read his essay.
 

A Terrible Normality by Michael Parenti

This country and those considered "the west" have done massive damage around the world for no other reason than the attempt to make others follow the rules we have abandoned.
 

There were the centuries of heartless slavery in the Americas and elsewhere,

 

Let us not forget the extermination of some 200,000 Filipinos by the U.S. military at the beginning of the twentieth century, the genocidal massacre of 1.5 million Armenians by the Turks in 1915, and the mass killings of African peoples by the western colonists, including the 63,000 Herero victims in German Southwest Africa in 1904, and the brutalization and enslavement of millions in the Belgian Congo from the late 1880s until emancipation in 1960—followed by years of neocolonial free-market exploitation and repression in what was Mobutu’s Zaire.

I could share the atrocities he points to and possibly should but I hope you would read this in full.Well maybe one more taste.
 

Today in much of Africa, Central Asia, and the Middle East there are “smaller” wars, replete with atrocities of all sorts. Central America, Colombia, Rwanda and other places too numerous to list, suffered the massacres and death-squad exterminations of hundreds of thousands, a constancy of violent horrors. In Mexico a “war on drugs” has taken 70,000 lives with 8,000 missing.

That doesn't scratch the surface and is not the gist of the argument. After laying out the suffereing throughout fomented by those that were and are chasing the gold they see at the end of a false rainbow and trampling those they might see an obstacle he offers this...

Knowing your enemies and what they are capable of doing is the first step toward effective opposition. The world becomes less of a horrific puzzlement.  We can only resist these global (and local) perpetrators when we see who they are and what they are doing to us and our sacred environment.

 

Democratic victories, however small and partial they be, must be embraced. But the people must not be satisfied with tinseled favors offered by smooth leaders. We need to strive in every way possible for the revolutionary unraveling, a revolution of organized consciousness striking at the empire’s heart with the full force of democracy, the kind of irresistible upsurge that seems to come from nowhere while carrying everything before it.

You need to read it. Often you read the phrase "a must read" rarely do I write it but here it is.

A must read...

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Watching the Parenti video at the link

traveler's picture

and discussion of corporate media coverage of events in the news. This is excellent. Thank you.

Recently Glenn Greenwald had a question and answer session on his blog at The Guardian. In one of his responses, scroll down the the "other" catergory, he explains very succinctly that:

The establishment media exists to support the establishment, not to challenge it.

We need to be aware of this and know that we now have many alternative sources. Let's use them and recognize the propaganda and misinformation presented on behalf of the power elite by the power elite intended for public consumption.

 

 

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I was similarly blown away today

geomoo's picture

by this article from Henry A. Giroux.  He lays it out straight, too, but he does have some recommendations.

 

What is missing in the current debates dominating Washington politics is the recognition that the real issues at stake are neither the debt ceiling nor the state of the economy, however important, but a powerful and poisonous form of authoritarianism that poses a threat to the very idea of democracy and the institutions, public values, formative cultures and public spheres that nourish it.

He quotes Arundhati Roy:

This theft of language, this technique of usurping words and deploying them like weapons, of using them to mask intent and to mean exactly the opposite of what they have traditionally meant, has been one of the most brilliant strategic victories of the czars of the new dispensation. It has allowed them to marginalize their detractors, deprive them of a language to voice their critique and dismiss them as being "anti-progress," "anti-development," "anti-reform," and of course "anti-national" - negativists of the worst sort. To reclaim these stolen words requires explanations that are too tedious for a world with a short attention span, and too expensive in an era when Free Speech has become unaffordable for the poor. This language heist may prove to be the keystone of our undoing.

Back to Giroux:

 

The war on the social contract, the welfare state, democratic politics, equality and the very idea of justice is an attack not simply on everything from Medicare to Social Security to the Equal Pay Act, it is an assault on "the basic architecture of our collective responsibility to ensure that Americans share in a decent life." It is also an aggressive strike against the formative cultures and modes of individual and collective agency that legitimate a connection between the democratic polis and the possibility of economic, social and political freedom. The new extremism and its authoritarian politics draw attention away from serious social problems and the actual structural and ideological conditions that reproduce them. Underlying the shadow of authoritarianism is a corrosive attempt to "create a loss of conviction, a loss of faith in the culture of open democracy, a sense of skepticism and withdrawal." To the degree that the private sphere becomes the only space in which to imagine any sense of hope, pleasure or possibility, citizenship becomes distorted, removed from issues of equity, social justice and civic responsibility. Tony Judt is right in arguing that we have entered a historical conjuncture in which politics is losing its shape, its power of attraction and its ability to confront the anti-democratic pressures at work in American society today.

But he does have an assignment pertinent to our website here:

Opposing this contemporary, cruel form of authoritarianism demands a new language for embracing the social, for defining civic engagement, for rethinking the meaning of agency and politics and for talking about social responsibility....

snip

 

Yet, while the grip of an authoritarian political culture and the politics of distraction are getting stronger in American society, the current attack on democracy should be taken as a new historical opportunity to generate new collective struggles in the hopes of creating a future that refuses to be defined by the dystopian forces now shaping American society. In the aftermath of the massive suffering of produced by World War II and the horrors of the Holocaust, Theodor W. Adorno in the shadow of an older form of authoritarianism refused to give up on hope as an essential condition of agency, politics and justice. He insists that: "Thinking is not the intellectual reproduction of what already exists anyway. As long as it doesn't break off, thinking has a secure hold on possibility. Its insatiable aspect, its aversion to being quickly and easily satisfied, refuses the foolish wisdom of resignation.... Open thinking points beyond itself." His words are both profound and instructive for the time in which we live because they point to the need to think beyond the given, to think beyond the distorted and market-based inverted hope now on offer from the advocates of casino capitalism.

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