September 28, 2009

Not To Be Missed

Dear Friends,

Check out a Harrison Ford film entitled "Crossing Over". It's a pretty good portrait of what we have finally become, and of the violence that I believe now lies at the center of the American soul--not exactly a happy place these days. The movie is running in Mexico under the title of "Persecucion inminente," which comes closer to the mark. When the film ended and the lights went up, I noticed that I was the only gringo in the theater, and felt more than a little embarrassed about it.

Of course, the film got panned by most US newspapers. Gee, what a shock.

Anyway, "enjoy"!



Blogger Poncho said...

Where in Mexico City did you watch this? I cannot find it on any theater

10:16 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dear Poncho,

I didn't see it in the DF, but in "the provinces".'s been out a while, so you might check Blockbuster--perhaps it's available on DVD. Maybe can tell you something...failing that, I guess you'll have to wait for it to come to the DF (unless it's been and gone, which would be a shame). Good luck, in any case.

12:22 PM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman, I haven't seen this movie but Training Day with Denzel Washington is worth seeing too. It's about the corruption and violence in big city police departments and it's probably a fairly accurate description.

A video you and your readers might enjoy is one of our former high ranking and very influencial Congressmen making a complete fool of himself. Whatever shreds of dignity Americans have clung to are fast becoming memories. I would add the link but I'm not sure how to do that but here's the address:
Hope that works for anyone who would like a good laugh.

11:37 AM  
Anonymous Art said...

Dear Prof. Berman,

Did you see the Oscar nominated documentary, "The Garden", about the South Central Farmers of L.A. and their struggle against the powers-that-be? One of the largest community gardens in the U.S. was sold to a developer in 2004, and the farmers were evicted in 2006. With the help of many celebrity supporters, including Dennis Kucinich, they fought back. (If you're a regular reader of this blog, you can probably guess what the ultimate outcome was!) Was it because the farmers were mostly immigrants from Latin America, or because they were growing their own food for their families? Absolutely heart-breaking.

5:47 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dear Art,

Well, private enterprise ueber Alles. Remember that community gardens are just a half-step away from communism.

Imagine it like this: at some point (1795?) somebody put something in the water supply, with the result that anyone who drank it had the irresistible urge to ram their head up their ass. Fast-forward 200 yrs, and what do you think we've got? 306 million "doughnuts" rolling around the landscape. Not pretty, but amusing from a certain pt of view. To quote Gore Vidal: "Stupidity excites me." Gore recently did an interview with the Times of London (I recommend you google it) in which he said the US had no future and Obama was doing a whole lotta nothing. Might as well tell it like it is, eh wot?

Onward and Downward,

6:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


And while I'm on the subject, I need to point out the sheer evil of all words beginning with "com":

communism (obviously)
compadre, companero
commingle (esp. bad)
Como, Perry (oops; mistake)
come hither
come live with me and be my love

6:24 PM  
Blogger heather said...

"Blockbuster"? Are you serious? They rarely ever have anything that needs to be seen. Same with about every other major movie rental, unless Michael Moore's name is attached to it. Netflix is your best bet.

Tom Delays appearance as well as Obamas appearance on late night television are enough to make a person want to vomit. What a way to make a mockery of American politics.

2:47 PM  
Anonymous teri schooley said...

Dear Dr. Berman,
"Come live with me..." - does she not want to leave Boston?
I very much enjoyed the Gore Vidal interview you suggested; he has such a sharp way with words. I particularly liked his brief summation of the US: "Instead, America has 'no intellectual class' and is 'rotting away at a funereal pace. We’ll have a military dictatorship fairly soon, on the basis that nobody else can hold everything together. Obama would have been better off focusing on educating the American people. His problem is being over-educated. He doesn’t realise how dim-witted and ignorant his audience is. Benjamin Franklin said that the system would fail because of the corruption of the people and that happened under Bush.'”
My Dad, who is 78, has begun using swear words for the first time, most often while watching the news. "Well," he'll say, "this is utter bullshit." And I guess that about sums it up.

8:05 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dear Teri,

Well, thanks fer asking. Sad to say, my Boston squeeze decided to pack it in after two yrs, so I've been on my own for nearly a year now. Hey, what're ya gonna do, eh?

As for Gore, I really found that quote from Ben Franklin very astute. Not long after that, De Tocqueville wrote that democracy in America was a great experiment, but it could only exceed with an intelligent populace. So much for that.


9:32 AM  
Anonymous teri schooley said...

Dear Dr. Berman,
Oh, I am sorry to hear that. I so wanted a sloppy and happy romance story!
On another topic, I was led to "google" Mark Twain quotes after reading a pithy anti-war statement he supposedly made and found this, which I think he could just have easily said today: "The loud little handful will shout for war. The pulpit will warily and cautiously protest at first…The great mass of the nation will rub its sleepy eyes, and will try to make out why there should be a war, and they will say earnestly and indignantly: "It is unjust and dishonorable and there is no need for war." Then the few will shout even louder…Before long you will see a curious thing: anti-war speakers will be stoned from the platform, and free speech will be strangled by hordes of furious men who still agree with the speakers but dare not admit it ... Next, statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception."
Perhaps it particularly resonated with me because I just read Vidal's remarks regarding the likelihood that we are gearing up for war with Iran (which I think has been evident for about two years now. We are just so stupid.) One of my senators, Ben Cardin, made a statement a couple of weeks ago (like, in PUBLIC, for God's sake) that we had to continue in Afghanistan and "win" because the "Taliban were responsible for 9/11". No doubt the public will buy that notion soon enough, and probably never even notice the change in the identity of the Bad Guys, and also accept the idea that Iran is on the brink of causing nuclear Armageddon, and we'll just keep on truckin' on with the plan until our heads cave in from lack of structural support.
Plus ca change..., n'est pas?

3:18 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dear Teri,

I'm convinced that a larger collection of bozos never existed before in a single geographical space in the history of the world, than us. I think we hit the trifecta, really: corrupt (Franklin); stupid (De Tocqueville); violent (me, plus a few others). Clowns ueber Alles. What was this glorious future Obama was talking abt?


9:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Crossing Over" should be easy to find in any Mexican market with even a few copyright infringing DVD booths. An interesting enough movie to be sure.

Thanks for the info on The Garden. Clips on Youtube show what an awful deal that was. Bolshevik carrots. Look out!

El Juero

10:00 PM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman, I saw Crossing Over and want to thank you for the recommendation. A better title would have been The Power of the American Dream (or perhaps, Illusion).

5:25 PM  

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