Tag Archives: United States

FROM BOSTON (where the American Revolution Began) A THREAT AND A WARNING—“WHAT CHANCE WOULD HIS [TRUMP’S] OUTSIDER MOVEMENT REALLY HAVE AGAINST THE FULL RESOURCES OF THE US GOVERNMENT? Demands for Reform will be met with Tanks in the Street, eh?

Trump could win — but not necessarily the White House (Evan Horowitz, Boston Globe, October 21, 2016)

One widening fear is that Trump simply won’t accept defeat, instead doubling down on his talk of a “rigged election,” leading to an uprising against the established political order. But there’s an obvious problem with this approach: It doesn’t lead to victory. What chance would his outsider movement really have against the full resources of the US government? And where’s the money in it?

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/10/21/donald-trump-going-win/W9OJE03yH9FiB9fD5QMKxN/story.html

WHAT CHANCE WOULD HIS OUTSIDER MOVEMENT REALLY HAVE AGAINST THE FULL RESOURCES OF THE US GOVERNMENT?  This sounds like a threat against the people of the United States, to me: QUESTION OUR AUTHORITY, CHALLENGE THE LEGITIMACY OF OUR ELECTIONS, AND YOU WILL DIE…. am I right?  Ever so quietly, Mr. Horowitz is telling the American people: if you dare to question HILLARY’S authority, or the legitimacy of HILLARY’S election—then the government of the United States will bring out its tanks and run over you in the streets, right?  Just like Tienamen Square…. NOT so very long ago….like 27 years?

This was a followup to Horowitz’ curiously dated “October 17, 2016” article entitled:

“When you call the Election Rigged, Everyone Loses”

discussing Donald Trump’s comments during the Third Debate, which took place on “October 19, 2016” in which Trump refused to accept, in advance, the results of an election that hadn’t happened yet:

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/10/17/when-you-call-election-rigged-everyone-loses/CxbmV9qmQCIGxNANlhM20J/story.html

I have to say, I just couldn’t disagree more!  When a major political candidate finally acknowledges, in 2016, that there is a possibility that the elections have been “rigged” or at the very least DRAMATICALLY manipulated, he is simply stating a completely obvious and widely known fact.

We need to eschew all convenient lies and accept what Al Gore might call certain “Inconvenient Truths”—elections in America since 2000 have been questionable when seen in the best possible light, but more likely constitute outrageous “continental and oceanic” frauds against the people from coast to coast.

The Boston Globe never (in recent memory) met a Socialist it didn’t like… but it is still disheartening to think that the City of the Sons of Liberty has sunk this low.  This is, quite simply, the diametric opposite of the Spirit of ’76 in Eighteenth Century Boston (and Virginia) which led to the American Revolution, when Patrick Henry famously intoned from the pulpit of St. John’s Church in Richmond:

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!

A very dear old friend wrote back to me, after I announced that Trump’s position against acceptance had finally convinced me to vote for him, after many months of vacillation and hesitation:

OMG!  Maybe that should be WTF. This is what you got from the last debate?! How utterly depressing.  .  .   .   .   .  If you honestly think this clown would be safe in world politics, I fear for your sanity. I can’t begin to express what a disaster I think he would be as President, except to say that in a million years, I would never have believed I would find myself voting for Hillary, but he made it a necessity. Just one more thing to despise this bloviated windbag and egomaniacal twit!

I don’t necessarily deny that there are clownish and twitty things about Trump, but if he truly stands outside the current governmental-elite system, then he is worth his weight in god: I just couldn’t believe that he really was until October 19, 2016.

And, does being a Clown or a Twit really disqualify anyone from office?  I rather think history is against that.

Trump is often compared to Hitler in exactly this way, and the notion of Hitler as a clown is as old as the Three Stooges’ early production called “Nasty Spy” and Charlie Chaplin’s brilliant “The Great Dictator”—-not to mention later “Springtime for Hitler” and “The Producers”….or a thousand shorter skits involving Monty Python or other British Comedians.

Caricature and ridicule are very socially interesting and ritually powerful, as our dear old professor Dr. Victoria Reifler Bricker hath taught us to say, and understand.

The role of Royal Court Jesters in Royal Courts and the interplay between Kings and Court Jesters is likewise well-known and documented anthropologically and historically everywhere. The Maya God K— whether called Tezcatlipoca or Kakupacal, is iconographically represented as “The Jester God” and he is in fact the chief Deity of Mesoamerican Kings and Rulers, from the ancient Ahauwob of the Peten to the Huey Tlatoani of Tenochtitlan. Does that make them undignified or less royal, or does it inform us of the nature of nobility and royalty? What does it tell us that the words “Sac” or “Iztac” refer to things mythical and imaginary, and otherworldly and royal?

Hitler was obviously an actor who rehearsed a role. So was Ronald Reagan. Recently republished photographs from he 1920s show that Hitler learned his oratorical style and practiced it privately in front of the Camera. Well??? Some of his poses, while learning, were definitely funny. Most actors have to practice before becoming capable of world class, memorable presentations… Many people criticize Trump because he is not an actor—the express and explicit criticism is “he does not know how to act in public” or “he does not know how to act like a President.”

Adolph Hitler did not know how to “Act like a Fuhrer” when he was a painter or a corporal in Kaiser Wilhelm’s Army. Who disputes that?

Every lawyer who appears in Court either “represents” or “acts on behalf of” another—and a lawyer’s acting is not metaphoric, but in fact had better be Oscar winning or else the lawyer loses…. Hillary is a lawyer and she knows how to “act” her role much better than Trump. We expect our rulers to be excellent actors. We accept that they should wear costumes and take positions (i.e. pose artificially) and effectively dance around their enemies.

Congress Assembled “Acts”, as do Courts of Law, and “Leaders” in Parliamentary Politics, so what is surprising that Ritual and Theatre are so intimately linked. “Tragedy” was originally the name for the rituals of Dionysus…. So was Hitler a Tragic Figure or a Comedian? He may have been some of both. Hitler, like Benito Mussolini, was born a common man, not an aristocrat like Franklin Delano Roosevelt or Winston Spencer Churchill, who was born at Blenheim Palace, home of the Dukes of Marlborough for three hundred years now.

What seems certain is that, whether you regard him as a clown or a tragedian, Hitler’s “acting” is so memorable that it made an indelible mark on the world, and that, out of the 20th Century, even if Stalin, Churchill, and Roosevelt are memories consigned to Marx’s old Midden Heap or Dustbin of History…. the name and role of Adolph Hitler may well be remembered with mystery, awe, and fear…. and that is what my old Harvard Linguistics Professor, the late Calvert Watkins, would call “imperishable fame”, or “the immortality of the Gods”….

I think what I really took away from the Third Debate on 19 October 2016 (which Evan Horowitz apparently knew all about on 17 October 2016? to write about it in the Boston Globe?) is that Trump may be enough of a clown to really ACT FOR or REPRESENT me (and 150,000,000-200,000,000 or so) other “traditional Americans” against the current global elite.

For those of us in that category (150,000,000 or so “Traditional Americans”), the past eight years have truly been an abomination marking the final crystallization of life into the future predicted by  Huxley’s Brave New World and Orwell’s 1984.

Clowns stand, throughout the symbolism and iconography of the world, for established orders TURNED UPSIDE DOWN—and THAT is exactly what we need in America today—the Bush-Clinton-Obama Oligarchy MUST be stood on its head and shaken, the course of history must be reversed, and maybe this  possibly over-sexed Orange-haired clown is just the man to do what needs to be done….

Where do we belong?—Meditations on the Feast of Saints Peter & Paul—where DO we belong?

Always hoped that I’d be an Apostle, knew that I could make it if I tried;….. then when we retire we can write the Gospels so they’ll still talk about us when we die….

Jesus Christ Superstar, Andrew Lloyd Weber (Broadway 1971, Movie 1973)

2 Timothy 4:1-8.   As for me, I am already being poured out as a libation, and the time of my departure has come.  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Saint Peter’s self-chosen mission was as Apostle to the Jews, Saint Paul’s to the Greeks, though they both died in Rome.  Originally they belonged to the same Jewish Community as Joseph & Mary, John-the-Baptist, and Jesus himself.  We might imagine that Peter and Paul belonged, presumably as devout members of the Temple of Jerusalem, but possibly not even close, but they belonged to that race and religion and linguistic and ethnic group, in Roman Occupied Judea, aka Palestine, aka Syria, presumably being very close in age and community to Jesus Christ himself.  

In the service of the Anointed “Son of God”, heir of the Royal House of David, the tree that grew from Jesse’s loins, Peter and Paul became the most famous and visible to history of all Jesus’ Apostles. They belonged as apostlesPaul’s letters and writings were generally deemed to “belong” in the Bible by the Council of Nicea.  But the “Gospel of Peter” was deemed by that same body NOT to belong, although it scholars of early Christianity still discuss it extensively, see e.g.: 

http://earliestchristianity.wordpress.com/2013/04/19/the-walking-talking-cross-in-the-gospel-of-peter-goodacre-vs-foster/

My “Forward Day-by-Day Booklet” suggests that this is a day when we should all consider, like Peter and Paul, where we belong, whether we are Christians or Jews or Pagans, to begin with, and then what we should do next.  Without our community, what should we do and how?  Should we accept the world as it is or try to change it?  Where do we belong in history?

We are free, endowed by God and/or Natural Selection with Free Will, but that is perhaps the greatest of our burdens.  “Our world recognizes the subversive nature of the Christian faith and subverts us either by ignoring us or by giving us the freedom  to be religious—as long as we keep religion a matter of personal choice.”   (From “Resident Aliens” by Stanley Hauerwas.

Has the South “Run the Good Race?” Is it time for the South (and California and Texas and the Union as a whole) to choose a different Path?   If we cannot “keep the faith”—do we really belong here?

Pat Buchanan has always been one of my favorite political writers.  He now asks whether the South still belongs in the Union, and I think it is a valid question.  Frankly, I believe that the Union does not belong anymore.  As my long-time (but currently “vacationing” personal assistant Peyton Freiman said sagely some years ago, “The United States needs to Secede from itself.  I think this has only become truer with time.  The South should Secede; California and Hawaii and Texas and Alaska should Secede. New England and New York should secede.  The Federal Union should be dissolved.  Obama can have the District of Columbia all to himself and the Supreme Court and Congress.  Illinois and Michigan might want to secede but then let Chicago and Detroit Secede and form an Isolated trio of City States with D.C., Detroit and Chicago exist under Obama.  The states should not recall their congressmen, because they are only worthy to be forgotten, not recalled…. In fact, all the States should simply revoke their Congressmen’s citizenship and order them to remain in D.C. or emigrate to Afghanistan, Israel, or Saudi Arabia or Yemen, depending on their political preferences.

Does the South Belong in the Union?

Friday – June 28, 2013 at 12:27 am

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Is the Second Reconstruction over?

The first ended with the withdrawal of Union troops from the Southern states as part of a deal that gave Rutherford B. Hayes the presidency after the disputed election of 1876.

The second began with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a century after Appomattox. Under the VRA, Southern states seeking to make even minor changes in voting laws had to come to Washington to plead their case before the Justice Department and such lions of the law as Eric Holder.

Southern states were required to get this pre-clearance for any alterations in voting laws because of systematic violations of the 14th and 15th amendment constitutional rights of black Americans to equal access to polling places and voting booths.

The South had discriminated by using poll taxes, gerrymandering and literacy tests, among other tactics. Dixie was in the penalty box because it had earned a place there.

What the Supreme Court did Tuesday, in letting the South out of the box, is to declare that, as this is not 1965, you cannot use abuses that date to 1965, but have long since disappeared, to justify indefinite federal discrimination against the American South.

You cannot impose burdens on Southern states, five of which recorded higher voting percentages among their black populations in 2012 than among their white populations, based on practices of 50 years ago that were repudiated and abandoned in another era.

You cannot punish Southern leaders in 2013 for the sins of their grandfathers. As Chief Justice John Roberts noted, black turnout in 2012 was higher in Mississippi than in Massachusetts.

Does this mean the South is now free to discriminate again?

By no means. State action that discriminates against minority voters can still be brought before the Department of Justice.

Even the “pre-clearance” provision of the VRA remains. All the court has said is that if Congress wishes to impose a pre-clearance provision on a state or group of states, Congress must have more evidence to justify unequal treatment than what “Bull” Connor did in Birmingham back in 1965.

Congress could pass a bill today authorizing Justice Department intervention in any state where the registration of blacks, Hispanics or Asians fell below 60 percent of that electorate.

What Congress can no longer do is impose conditions on Southern states from which Northern states are exempt. Washington can no longer treat the states unequally — for that, too, is a violation of the Constitution.

The Roberts court just took a giant stride to restoring the Union.

Yet the hysterical reaction to the decision reveals a great deal.

What do critics say they are afraid of?

While conceding that immense progress has been made with the huge turnout of black voters in the South and the re-election of a black president, they say they fear that without the pre-clearance provision this would never have happened. And now that the provision no longer applies to the South, the evil old ways will return.

On several counts this is disheartening.

For what the critics of the court decision are saying is that, no matter the progress made over half a century, they do not trust the South to deal fairly and decently with its black citizens, without a club over its head. They do not believe the South has changed in its heart from the days of segregation.

They think the South is lying in wait for a new opportunity to disfranchise its black voters. And they think black Southerners are unable to defend their own interests — without Northern liberal help.

In this belief there are elements of paranoia, condescension and bigotry.

Many liberals not only do not trust the South, some detest it. And many seem to think it deserves to be treated differently than the more progressive precincts of the nation.

Consider Wednesday’s offering by Washington Post columnist Harold Meyerson. The South, he writes, is the home of “so-called right-to-work laws” and hostility to the union shop, undergirded by “the virulent racism of the white Southern establishment,” a place where a “right-wing antipathy toward workers’ rights” is pandemic.

The South is the “the heartland of cheap-labor America. … When it wants to slum, business still goes to the South.” Then there are those “reactionary white Republican state governments.”

Were a conservative to use the term “black” as a slur the way Meyerson spits out the word “white,” he would be finished at the Post. Meyerson’s summation:

“If the federal government wants to build a fence that keeps the United States safe from the danger of lower wages and poverty and their attendant ills — and the all-round fruitcakery of the right-wing white South — it should build that fence from Norfolk to Dallas. There is nothing wrong with a fence as long as you put it in the right place.”

Harold looks forward to the day that a surging Latino population forces “epochal political change” on a detestable white South.

Are the Human Races a valuable element of Diversity? If so, they should be preserved and fostered, protected and endowed as a matter of right, with the encouraging impetus to further diversity

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/30/opinion/ecology-lessons-from-the-cold-war.html?nl=opinion&emc=edit_ty_20130530&_r=0
OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

Ecology Lessons From the Cold War

By JACOB DARWIN HAMBLIN
Published: May 29, 2013

CORVALLIS, Ore. — TODAY the effort to preserve the planet’s biodiversity is often seen as a campaign to save the whales for their own sake, or to give polar bears a few more winters on the Arctic ice. But in the 1950s, when the concept was first discussed, it was understood that far more was at stake. The “conservation of variety,” as it was called during the early years of the cold war, was no less than a strategy of human survival.

Golden Cosmos

At that time, American military leaders and scientists were contemplating the possibility of total war with the Soviet Union, with not only civilians, but plants, animals and entire ecosystems as fair game. The war planners imagined a brave new world in which biological and radiological weapons would be considered side by side with crop destruction, huge fires, artificial earthquakes, tsunamis, ocean current manipulation, sea-level tinkering and even weather control.

Numerous approaches seemed feasible then: melting polar ice by blackening it with soot, seeding clouds with chemicals to harass an enemy with rain and mud, killing life-sustaining crops with deadly cereal rust spores or radioactive contamination. Entire forests might be set ablaze by the thermal radiation of a high-altitude nuclear blast. Well-placed detonations might unleash the energy of the earth’s crust, oceans or weather systems. During the Korean War, Representative Albert Gore Sr. went so far as to urge President Harry S. Truman to contaminate an enormous strip of territory across the Korean Peninsula with radioactive waste from plutonium processing, hoping the poisonous landscape would deter Communist troops from moving south.

By the early 1960s, NATO was calling these approaches “environmental warfare.” One of the important considerations in the calculus, not surprisingly, was self-preservation. War planning would include figuring out how to keep people alive beyond the initial devastation. The best approach, scientists concluded, was coming up with ways to protect ecosystems.

Today we call it biodiversity. One of its principal advocates was the Oxford ecologist Charles Elton, whose book “The Ecology of Invasions by Animals and Plants,” argued that simplifying landscapes with weedkillers, or planting single crop species over large areas made a recipe for disaster. The best defense from diseases, other species or natural catastrophes, he said, was to conserve as much biological variety as possible in the fields and hedges of the countryside to counterbalance any threat. In his book he called it the conservation of variety.

Elton’s approach not only inspired Rachel Carson to write “Silent Spring,” about the harm done by insecticides, it also resonated among scientists in the defense establishment. Fantasizing about environmental warfare in the early 1960s, NATO scientists tried to imagine which links in ecosystems were vulnerable to manipulation. Studies had recently shown radioactive fallout infiltrating reindeer meat, a crucial part of Eskimos’ diets. It was a revelation to think that such a connection in the food chain was now targetable. But the reverse was also true, and underscored Elton’s point: the complexity of an ecosystem made any particular “link” less important, making the system less vulnerable.

This was the lesson defense planners took to heart. They decided that a robust peacetime market economy provided variety, and thus security in peace and war. If nuclear war ever came, a decentralized, diversified society would be in better shape than a centrally planned one like the Soviet Union’s. The same logic applied to biological variety. That is why strategic stockpiles of Western nations during the cold war did not collect enormous stores of favorite foods but samples of the widest range of species imaginable.

In the face of natural disasters, such diversity seemed to be the West’s ace in the hole. The variety of agricultural products in the United States far outpaced those of the Soviet Union, and is a reason that C.I.A. analysts predicted in the 1980s that global climate change would cause more harm to Russia than to the United States.

We managed to survive the cold war, but the challenges to our environmental security remain. We need to stop treating the idea of biodiversity as a philosophical preference and embrace it as a strategy of survival, just as it was for those who, more than a half-century ago, planned for a calamitous total war.

Jacob Darwin Hamblin is an associate professor of history at Oregon State University and the author of “Arming Mother Nature: The Birth of Catastrophic Environmentalism.”