May 05, 2014

Our Man in Hanoi


Just arrived in Hanoi, managed to arrange a date with Jane Fonda for later this week at the Jane Fonda Institute. Am very excited about this, although she says that before we engage in any hanky-panky, she needs to know the state of my involvement with Sarah Palin. "You explicitly wrote on your blog," says Jane, "that you were intending to marry Sarah and copulate with her on an ice floe in Alaska, among the meese, and with Ed Meese present." I assured her that I had long since withdrawn my marriage proposal to Sarah, regarded Ed Meese as a douche bag, and had eyes only for her (i.e., Jane). Men are so fickle, as the Waferettes on this blog can surely attest to. Anyway, I'll let you know how all this turns out.

Meanwhile, I got picked up at the airport by my host's assistant, and as we left the area there was a big sign that said: CA CAC CA. I kid you not. I took this to be a comment on Obama's foreign policy. Then, as we entered the city, another sign said HOT DUNG. This I regarded as a comment on the contents of the cranium of the average American citizen. I'd like to add that there was another sign that said LOON I BINH, referring to how the Vietnamese viewed the US in general; but unfortunately, that sign is yet to be erected. But clearly, we are dealing with a very smart population (here, of course, not in the US). Anyway, stay tuned; more will be revealed.



Anonymous bobby brown said...

truthdig has their "truthdigger of the week" as the celebrity gossip site "TMZ" huh?

Truthdiggers of the Week: Donald Sterling’s Ousters

9:26 AM  
Anonymous Tod said...

Anthony Bourdain questions why Americans use and consume all things Mexican but hate Mexico:

"In nearly 30 years of cooking professionally, just about every time I walked into a new kitchen, it was a Mexican guy who looked after me, had my back, showed me what was what, was there—and on the case—when the cooks more like me, with backgrounds like mine—ran away to go skiing or surfing—or simply 'flaked.'"

'In years of making television in Mexico, it’s one of the places we, as a crew, are happiest when the day’s work is over.'

10:27 AM  
Anonymous JWO said...

Have fun in Hanoi MB!

For everyone else's reading enjoyment:

especially note the discussion of the manipulation of statistics.

12:28 PM  
Blogger Karl said...

Thanks for your recommending the Sword and Chrysanthemum book, I have just started it and it is very interesting.

5:01 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Chieu Hoi Wafers:

Ronald Reagan was the bozo/rock upon which the current USA was built:

"Wright was aghast to find that smart and serious political operatives in D.C. appeared happy to work under Reagan’s leadership. “No one in Washington smirks when they are expounding the President’s views or communicating his policies,” he said. “No one in official and hardly anyone in non-official Washington decries his want of powers of analysis or his inability to argue a closely reasoned case.”

Wright’s summation of the twin threads of the Administration’s policy objectives was equally damning. He described Reaganomics as “unsophisticated… it’s component parts self-contradictory” and his foreign policy as cartoonish and based on Reagan’s Wild West heritage. “California is on the look out for baddies and Public Baddie No 1 is the Soviet Union… baddies, as we all know, have only one proper fate: to bite the dust.”"

6:30 PM  
Blogger Val said...

You got "picked up" at the *airport* already? MB, you sure work fast!

The content of most Americans' craniums isn't even hot any more. It mostly ranges from tepid to gelid.

Have a good time with Jane & Co., and by no means should you rush back to the Loon I Binh.

6:48 PM  
Anonymous Dan said...

Yes, the Vietnamese are a highly intelligent people. Schools in Philadelphia dream of having Vietnamese students in order to raise test scores. Here's a joke to illustrate. How do you know if a Vietnamese has entered your house? Ans: The dog's been eaten and your kid's homework is done.

1:59 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

2nd Report from Hanoi:

Vietnamese people are immensely friendly, gentle, and helpful. It's a pleasure 2b here, even if Jane stands me up. Did a ton of sightseeing today with my English-spkg guide, a college undergrad named Viet. He was great. For lunch, we ate 2 types of pho ("fuh"). Great stuff. Then something unexpected happened. We went into an art shop, one that sells propaganda posters from the VN war...and I suddenly started to cry. Jesus, it was embarrassing. But I guess the horror of that war, and my yrs of antiwar activism, all came back to me in a flash. One poster showed a drawing of Nixon with the caption (in Vietnamese), "Nixon will pay in his blood for ours," or something like that. Another--which I wound up buying (this is a reproduction, BTW, not an original, wh/wd sell for mucho moola), shows a young VN woman holding a baby and a rifle. The caption is something like "The Future Lies Ahead." When I think of what the American butchers did to these people--murdered 3m civilians and tortured tens of thousands as well--and for abs. nothing--well, it weighs heavily on my soul. You compare the VN people to Americans, and you can only shake yr head.

Hanoi is my kinda town. It is a bit seedy, run down; disheveled, like Mexico. It's so great to be here, really.


5:34 AM  
Blogger Publius said...

I remember, as a three or four year old, seeing the cover of a National Geographic, with a screaming Vietnamese child on the cover. I just tried to find the cover online, but couldn't. Anyway, it was a searing memory. I just couldn't understand why that would be happening. I didn't understand, of course, that my country was the main cause of this suffering, torture, and evil.

Now, "our" Supreme Court has refused to hear the NDAA appeal by Chris Hedges and his co-plaintiffs.
Keep enjoying Vietnam...

It's over, folks. The whole idea of the supremacy of the Supreme Court as far as judicial review is flawed. Who guards the guardians?, to loosely quote Juvenal.
Answer: nobody.
The Progressive/Liberal faith in the idea that government will do the right thing if only they are in control has been ludicrous for at least a century.
Good news: I will soon by applying for residency in another country, partly thanks to you, Prof. Berman. No guarantees of success, but one must start somewhere.
Wish us luck!

11:47 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

"Ronald Reagan was the bozo/rock upon which the current USA was built:"

No doubt the Gipper was greatly aided in his construction project by the existence of a natural tendency among the general public to prefer having complex problems reduced to simple terms with--surprise, surprise--equally simple solutions.

Not unlike other leaders who have held the office, who know how to push the emotional buttons of the populace (e.g., "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.").

"Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it."
--Mark Twain

12:13 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...


It was very nice to read about your experience in Vietnam so far, especially your cathartic moment in that Vietnam War art shop. Unfortunately, after all these years America remains just as psychopathic, if not worse. Let’s examine:

In his 1968 memoir, Curtis LeMay suggested that rather than negotiating with Hanoi, the United States should “bomb them back to the stone age,” by obliterating factories, harbors, and bridges “until we have destroyed every work of man in North Vietnam.” Of course, prior to that he did precisely that to Japan, and later suggested to Kennedy that the same be done to Cuba.

Fast forward to the present. Today the US is at war with much of the world, murders civilians on a daily basis, operates countless torture sites across the world, overthrows elected governments and replaces them with brutal dictators or Nazi criminals. The current “progressive” American president brags openly that he is “really good at killing people.”

But the revenge of history is that today 80 percent of America looks like a bombed out third world banana republic, the real unemployment is around 35 percent, the middle class has vanished, 50 million can’t even see a doctor when sick, there is absolutely no democratic process left, police across the US is applying the same brutality utilized in Afghanistan, and the nation is heading straight into the Dark Ages.

I’m sure the average Vietnamese is laughing his or her ass off watching Karma do its wonderful work on what probably has become one of the most criminal nations in history.

12:18 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Hola Dr. Berman and Wafers of the World!


Happy trails in Hanoi, MB. Geez
Louise, it's impossible to please all these wretched Americans at once. Although I have the deepest respect for Jane, she's crazier than a shithouse rat if she stands you up over the Sarah situation. We hafta talk some sense into Barbarella.

Sarah, of course, is all messed up over this because she thinks you don't love her anymore... and is about to go grizzly mama on Jane. Indeed, it could get pretty ugly as these two Sirens are at loggerheads w/each other over you.

And Meese! Poor Ed is going to pieces because you regard him as the royal douche bag that he is. It looks as though the *only* way outta this is to feed Ed to a pack of Alaskan wild dogs.

I'm sorry to read about your emotional breakdown in Hanoi over the War. I've concluded that if I ever get to heaven, I have two questions for God:

1. Man, why did you create so many stupid-ass motherfuckers?

2. Is Norman Morrison here?


4:43 PM  
Anonymous nasty gal vintage said...

Here's an example of someone who went from rebelling against capitalism, to becoming the CEO of a multi-million dollar vintage clothing business: Nasty Gal Vintage

He asked here if she'd become "the man", and her response was, "if it's on your own terms, capitalism is ok"

What an idiot.

8:22 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


B4 I 4get, check this out:


3. Why, Kim Jong Un's haircut? Why? Meanwhile, Jane wrote to say that she's tired of American men coming to see her in Vietnam, saying they want to treat her to a platter of Hard Ram Dong, or Wan Hung Lo, etc., while thinking she still looks like Barbarella. I assured her of my gd intentions, but I think jealousy over the Sarah P. issue is going to derail this whole venture. I did drop by the Jane Fonda Institute, BTW, only to discover it consists of a screening rm with "Barbarella" being played 24/7 on a closed-loop tape. Bummer.


Karma indeed. Literacy rate in Vietnam is abt 93%; in Detroit, something like 47%. Ho Ho Ho Chi Minh/NLF is gonna win. And they did.


She was actually 9. Her name is Kim Phuc; she now lives in Canada. I mention her, and the foto, in SSIG, as it turns out.

Anyway, I have a date today with a VN war veteran (American) who's lived here for 20 yrs. He's gonna take me to the Ho Mausoleum, also show me the lake into which John McCain parachuted, umpteen yrs ago.

Stay tuned, Waferinos; more to come.


11:17 PM  
Blogger Val said...

MB, you should take some scenic photos of that lake and send hi-res prints of them to Senator McCain. I'm sure he'll appreciate the thought.

In my book, Reagan was the rock on which the Republic foundered. Haven't seen it in a long time.

I observe from the wiki that the Vietnamese have some reputable art schools. Sure would be nice for yours truly if there turned out to be a visiting art prof teaching gig there. Might be my best shot at getting out of this rat trap. Maybe if I do a few lyrical lakeside canvases for the Senator, doors'll open up. Or some Barbarella velvet paintings; Sluts in Space must be a fairly popular theme...

12:25 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Under the heading "Springtime for Hitler," the following items:

A Tennessee state representative falls back on The Old Reliable to criticize the Affordable Care Act:

1.Lawmaker Stands By ObamaCare-Nazi Analogy

And a candidate for the City Council of Fresno, California discovers that the staff of a design firm he hired to create his campaign posters apparently never took a course in modern European history:

2. Another Holocaust Gaffe: Candidate's Death Camp Ad

In the interests of fairness, it should be pointed out that the first person is a Republican and the second is a Democrat.

Hitler and Nazi Germany: imagine how much poorer our political discourse would be without Der Führer and his Thousand Year Reich.

Godwin's Law--also known as Godwin's Law of Nazi Analogies--doesn't just apply to Internet discussions. This law states that as an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1. This law was first promulgated by American attorney and author Mike Godwin in 1990, and became an entry in the Oxford English Dictionary in 2012.

11:30 AM  
Anonymous Holzwege said...

50 million Americans hungry on a daily basis

Check out the article:

5:37 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and fellow Wafers,


Absolutely terrible news about Jane and the Institute. Well, at least you're gonna get to go see Ho in his Mausoleum. Also, be sure to set up a little shrine to Bomber McCain at Truc Bach Lake; a tiny photo of Sarah placed next to a green plastic army man should be sufficient. Meanwhile, what the hell is going on at the NYT, MB? Are the editors finally hearing the message? Jesus, I hope Michiko Kukutani reads this and chokes on it:


7:23 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Gd article, but he neglects to mention recent analyses of the contents of the avg American cranium.


In terms of real (not official) poverty, something like 40% of Americans are poor.


1:10 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

When your only tool is a hammer, everything you see appears to be a nail.

The most recent TomDispatch (8 May) reports on a recent Washington Post poll carried out during the period 28-31 March 2014 involving a national sample of 2,066 Americans who were asked what to do about the Ukraine crisis. Respondents were also asked to locate Ukraine on a map as part of a larger, ongoing project to study foreign policy knowledge.

Poll takers found that only one out of six Americans can find Ukraine on a map, and that this lack of knowledge is related to preferences: The farther [away from Ukraine's geographic location] their guesses were, the more they wanted the U.S. to intervene with military force.

As one of our late-lamented social critics had it, "We like war." Here's his commentary.

11:27 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Konnichirooni, Wafoutis:

Something Frank Bruini quoted in that NYT article that Jeff linked to bugs me:

"“Once a nation of competitive omnivores and carnivores, America could be turning more docile — a country of content, grazing herbivores,” wrote the social scientist Joel Kotkin in The Daily Beast in November 2013. Behold our trajectory: lions to lambs."

I have to quibble with that. I see no evidence that the USA has gone from being a rapacious predator, feeding off the bodies of weaker and smaller fellow-creatures, to a docile being, trying to live in harmony with the planet and basing its consumption on a concern for the well-being of all.


2:14 PM  
Blogger F. Thomas Matica said...

Mr. Berman,
I'm enlightened by your critiques of the US American scene.
However, as much as you point out the degeneracy of the American culture, I feel that you are being somewhat(?) hypocritical by using so many "text" abbreviations. It's getting hard for me to understand some of them and I am afraid that as time goes on and you sink deeper into the Mexican culture and out of this one, I will not be able to understand your commentaries. Maybe this is normal for the laid back culture in which you now find yourself. I just hope that you don't start texting in Japanese.
WAFER, I guess.
Thomas(only land-line telephone)

7:24 PM  
Anonymous omg benghazi! said...

Anybody read the book "The Folly of Fools: The Logic of Deceit and Self-Deception in Human Life" by Robert Trivers? It came out in paperback this year.

8:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Sigh. I know yr rt. What u don't understand is that I'm abt to turn 70 and am getting increasingly senile (something my critics have, in fact, pointed out). I did have a brain once; now, 50% of it has been replaced by small curd cottage cheese. What're ya gonna do, I ask ya.


Yes, we're dealing w/douche bags and morons, and 'progressives' refuse to factor that into their analyses. Meanwhile, here's an example of how Americans treat people. The guy saves McCain's life, and all he can manage to give him is a paperweight he bought in the U.S. Senate gift shop. We're crap, really; pure crap. (Plus, VN vets I've talked to here claim the guy was never actually tortured, but was treated fairly well. Torture story/heroism was just part of his postwar careerist spin. Now, every time the douche bag opens his mouth, he tortures *us*.)


Jonathan Franzen once referred to Michiko as "the fucking stupidest person in NYC." I kid u not.


Just spent 2 days out on Halong Bay. Whew! What beauty. 8th wonder of the world. Check out movie "Indochine," w/Catherine Deneuve, 1991; part of it takes place in Halong Bay. I hung out with some great folks--of course, none of them Americans. Chinese economist who writes poetry, for example. We discussed Larkin, Cavafy, and a host of other poets for hours. What American economist reads (let alone writes) poetry, at least since Galbraith? Anyway, all of u, pls c Halong Bay b4 u die.


3:58 AM  
Blogger Zosima said...

According to the poll, Brits were least in favor of Ukraine intervention, while Canadians were most. Among Americans, only 14 percent of respondents voiced support for a NATO-led military intervention, while nearly a quarter of respondents said the U.S. country should stay out of the conflict altogether.

WTF! Canadians more in favor of a war than Americans!!! And only 14%! What happened to the violent psychopaths who enjoyed killing a thousand civilians a every day in Vietnam from 1965-72? It gets worse - only 271 people were killed in drone strikes last year. Even if they were all civilians, which they weren't, that’s less than one a day. We went from a 1000 a day slaughterers to less that 1 a day slaughterers. This is astounding. Dr B, what was it like back then, living with Americans who were 1000 times more murderous?

4:40 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Ay, Waferinos!

Have mtg tomorrow morning w/VN's leading intellectual, whose name I can't pronounce. He's 96 yrs old, still going strong. In one recent interview, he said that American popular culture via the Net has done more to destroy Vietnam than all the bombs dropped on the country during the American War (as they call the Vietnam War here). Clearly, my kinda guy.

Hoa binh, amigos; hoa binh.


5:37 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Speaking of culture, an interesting & flawed article about the Internet destroying quality culture here:

I definitely want to read the Taylor book for myself. But I see that article writer Andrew Leonard has fallen into the trap of "only technology can save us from where it's taken us" -- in the immortal words of Rocket J. Squirrel, "But that trick never works!"

I'm thinking the only place you can see poetry being discussed on American TV today is an occasional show with Bill Moyers, bless him. And interestingly/sadly, a lot of progressives who agree with Bill on matters political & social, tend to chide him for "wasting time" on something like poetry, when he could & should be addressing current politics. Yet it's quality culture (or the lack of & disdain for) that's a benchmark of any society.

8:53 AM  
Anonymous joel osteen said...

"Early on a Sunday morning, people are already streaming into a massive shopping mall in Manila. The seven-story Robinsons Place is a temple of consumerism. It houses about 350 stores, including gun shops, dental offices, massage parlors, and a Kenny Rogers Roaster."

"Bringing Mass to shopping malls might help reverse these trends. In fact, the practice is now being copied by a handful of priests in the US and Europe. But there are some downsides, says Rene Santiago, a retired car salesman attending Mass at Robinsons Place. He complains that people come to Church, but they don't dress properly."

" 'I am very aware that most people are not fully concentrated in the celebration," says the priest, "There are too many distractions. But it's the challenge, I believe. Wherever they are, the church will be there for them.' "

Catholic Church in Philippines Holds Mass in Malls

Why don't we have church in shopping malls?! If we can convert an NBA arena to a megachurch and watch church in movie theaters, we can surely put a church right in the galleria!

Can we please get a football stadium+church+mall? Come on Houston, I know you can do it...

10:55 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...


Thanks for the link on the McCain rescue.

When I read in the article that McCain had given Mr. On a Senate seal as a "Thank You" gift, I immediately flashed back to the 2011 brouhaha that arose after Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) discovered while Christmas shopping for relatives how many items in the Smithsonian National Museum of American History gift shop were made in China. Sanders threatened to work in Congress to withhold funding from the museum if officials there didn't increase the proportion of American-made items on offer. This threat had some effect, as the museum established a special section devoted to American products.

I suspect the Senate Seal that Senator McCain gave his rescuer was "Made in China." Wouldn't that have been a delicious irony?

And so it goes.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Publius said...

Prof. Berman:
What is your opinion of the "scholar" Ian Morris's thesis that war is peace?

12:38 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and Wafers-


In the early '70s, my family invited two American Marines who were on leave from the VN war to our home for Thanksgiving dinner; quite a common practice in those days. Both were from Georgia and stationed in Southern California. I was just a kid at the time, but I recall my father talking with these two guys about the war in Vietnam. I don't remember the details of the entire conversation, but at one point both of them admitted that they were engaged in systematic murder of the Vietnamese people and that the US would ultimately pay the price for its immoral misuse of power. I've often wondered what happened to both of those guys... Perhaps, one of them is showing Dr. Berman around Hanoi, who knows.

Around the same time, I clearly remember my older brother playing his Kris Kristofferson LP, "The Silver Tongued Devil and I," endlessly. Jesus, one particular song stood out: "Good Christian Soldier."

Here's a bit of the lyrics:

Not so long ago in Oklahoma
The son of an Okie preacher knelt to pray
He said Lord I want to be a Christian soldier
Just like you and fight to build a new and better day

Cause Lord it's hard to be a Christian soldier when you tote a gun
And it hurts to have to watch a grown man cry
But we're playin' cards and writtin' home and havin' lots of fun
Tellin' jokes and learnin' how to die

The things I've come to know seem so confusing
It's gettin' hard to tell what's wrong from right
I can't separate the winners from the losers anymore
I'm thinkin' about just givin' up the fight


12:41 PM  
Blogger SteveR said...

The really marvelous thing to me is that despite the horrors we visited on the Vietnamese for years on end, and our final tail-tucked screw-your-future departure, they don't hate us today. Most Americans don't hate them either, but then again they didn't come through our whole country spewing fire and torture, so it's no great virtue for us to look on them with tolerance. For them to do the same to us, though, is little short of saintly, and deserving of far more serious contemplation than it seems to spark in most people.

12:56 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Long time lurker and big appreciator of WAF. I had an encounter today I thought Mr. Berman would enjoy...

I teach at a small community college in the burbs of Denver and a couple of our long-time art department faculty are retiring at the end of the semester. A group of us went out for lunch to celebrate and send them off this afternoon. The meal concluded in a lot of well wishes and tearful goodbyes. While one professor blotted her eye, the jewelry/metalworking professor (who is retiring) stated, "I'd probably cry too if I wasn't so damn numb!" - an exclamation perhaps many in the room could relate to but might not ever say out loud. Sadly, this may be indicative of our culture as a whole.

Thanks for sharing the experiences of your journeys Morris.

10:51 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Privyet tovarishch:

I don't know what to tell you, Father Zozima, but Canada has gradually lost its soul over the last ten years.

I have no explanation. The rest of the world seems to be waking up and recognising the threat that neoliberalism poses to humanity, while Canadians appear to have fallen in love with Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan.

1:14 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Went to screening last nite of old Oliver Stone film, "Heaven and Earth." Woman who is subject of film was actually present, to answer questions. God, Americans ask such dumb questions; but she was very patient. There's a line in the film where her mother says, "Americans have no beginning and no ending. They don't respect their ancestors." Anyway, tho I'm not crazy abt Stone, it's an enlightening film in many ways.


Exactly rt. One VN vet here told me that when some vets come over and meet with victims of the war, they suddenly start to sob uncontrollably. And the victims embrace them, say, "It's OK, you didn't know any better." A remarkable people. In terms of compassion, we don't even come close.


3:06 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: returning to Tokyo tonite, then Mexico on May 15. What a trip, I tell ya. Hoa binh.


5:42 AM  
Anonymous Josh said...

Funny someone asked about Ian Morris on here.

Dr B, I was going to ask you and the WAFers if anyone has read or heard of his "Why the West Rules - for Now"

Looked fascinating to me. Was reading the intro in a bookstore and it starts off w/ this little situation in an alternative history, w/ Queen Victoria surrendering to the Chinese Armada in 1848 London...face in the mud and all. and then asks "Why didn't history happen like this?"

11:45 AM  
Anonymous Frankista said...

With a friend like this, who needs an enemy?

There Was An Israeli Spy In Al Gore's Bathroom, Report Claims

3:14 PM  
Anonymous annis wandy said...

I wish you'd dote over another country, Sweden perhaps? Japan is toast - their ecological footprint is one of the highest in the world.

Global Footprint Network: Japan

5:53 PM  
Anonymous sans culture said...

I went on a tour with a Danish ambassador today - she tried to explain hygge and really made me want to go to Denmark.

6:50 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

In reference to your quote, "Americans have no beginning and no ending. They don't respect their ancestors." - did you see this?

As far as Recapture Canyon goes- I've been having comment arguments with people @ the Denver Post about the value of solitude in the wilderness and the importance of silence (vs their "we should be able to drive our ATVs wherever we want" attitude)... getting nowhere of course.

Another commenter astutely added, "You're using reason and expecting to be understood. Know your audience.Pictures and simple words might help."

(shaking head)

8:32 PM  
Anonymous cubeangel said...

Dr. B

I don't know how accurate Wikipedia truthfully is but it says that Vietnamese people value humanity as one of their primary focus.

Is this really true? Do they care about mankind as a whole?

Well, I know what we value. We as Americans value business and hustling. Man, we're pathetic.

10:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I'm not doting on Japan; I'm analyzing it. Big difference, no? This is what historians do. If the bk ever appears in print, and you shd chance to read it, you'll see the gd, the bad, and the ugly.


11:48 PM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...


An infuriating but unsurprising story, alas. We have so many people who are bursting with pride at their immense ignorance & self-centeredness. No doubt they think they're proud American patriots or something. They're certainly proud of being dumbasses.


I'm slowly making my way through Nick Turse's Kill Everything That Moves, though it's hard to stomach. That sort of soulless behavior is what's glorified & encouraged in popular entertainment today.

8:38 AM  
Anonymous MK said...

What's in America's heads? nothing..some have greed.
I do undestand the comment of the retiring prof. on being numb.
So enjoy your blog...reality in this false media world.

10:22 AM  
Anonymous Kevin said...

Ken Rose interview with Ian Morris here:

Dr. Berman - When do you expect publication of the Japan book? Your comments have indicated some pessimism.....

5:58 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

An interesting piece on the 11 May edition of the CBS program "Sunday Morning."

It focused on David Good, son of anthropologist Kenneth Good, and the unusual family David grew up in.

Father Kenneth Good went to South America in 1975, where he spent over a decade living among the Yanomami tribe at the headwaters of the Orinoco River between Brazil and Venezuela. Good took a Yanomami girl as a wife and ultimately returned to the United States with her, where the couple had three children: Vanessa, David, and Daniel.

Within a few years of her arrival in the United States, she had determined to return to her village, leaving children and husband behind. According to the Sunday Morning feature, her departure had as much to do with her feeling of loneliness in the midst of the American urban/suburban environment as it did with her language difficulties.

For those interested in this story, Kenneth Good wrote a book on his time with her and her people entitled Into the Heart: An Amazonian Love Story.

The BBC World Service website has an article by William Kremer entitled "Return to the rainforest: A son's search for his Amazonian mother" (28 August 2013). This article gives an excellent overview of the story for those not inclined to seek out the Kenneth Good book.

Just imagine: loneliness in the midst of "civilization," sufficient to impel a mother to abandon her children.

7:00 PM  
Anonymous Fred Blanton said...

Walked through a State park today. I saw a little girl throw her water bottle cap on the ground while her parents walked about 50 feet in front of her. Little weirdo looked at me and just threw it on the ground as if it was nothing. I'm sure she was taught that type of behavior by her mongoloid parents.

I also saw others putting their plastic bottles in the trash bin that was RIGHT NEXT TO a recycling bin. People are unbelievable retards. I can’t wait for this society to collapse and watch these GMO dullards drop like flies while no doubt denying climate change until the bitter end.

I saw a sign at the park that said the Indians had lived there for around 11,000 years. We’ve, been here since what? 1692? We’ll destroy the land and the whole damn climate in 350-400 years. Such a stupid, short-sighted, cruel people we are. What a waste.

7:46 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


No luck w/Japan bk so far, but I keep trying. Will let u all know.


8:47 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Now back in Tokyo, after an overwhelming wk in Vietnam. Will be flying back to Mexico City in 3 days. Meanwhile, Japanese friends arranged for me to take a lesson in sumi-e, Japanese ink brushstroke painting--very Zen. I went to the studio of the sensei at 11 this morning. He's nationally famous, has won major awards, exhibits regularly, also acts as a judge in painting contests. For a 90-min lesson, he charged me next to nothing. Now I don't think I have any special talents in this field, but he had me paint some bamboo at beginning of lesson and at end. I can see why students flock to his classes. My 1st effort was mechanical, lifeless; dull. The one I did an hr later was dynamic, alive, if not actually beautiful. No idea how I did it, amigos, but if I can, anybody can; altho I hafta say that this genre of art is extremely demanding, very precise. Sensei also showed me some of his artwork, most of it Japanese nature scenes, but also a lovely painting of Paris nr the Place Vendome. Breathtaking stuff; the guy's a genius. I shall leave Japan with happy memories. Also with a shitload more stuff to add to my manuscript, the one I might wind up handing out for free at Times Square, fresh off a printer at Kinko's. Why I continue to write is beyond me...


12:45 AM  
Blogger Dan Henry said...

Not sure if this has been linked to before... good read anyway

1:15 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

"Why I continue to write is beyond me..."

When I read this, I remembered--well. vaguely remembered--the response of a world-famous musician to a question from someone who asked why he continued to practice when he was a recognized maestro in his field.

The maestro responded that he was beginning to notice some improvement.

If the name of the musician should come to me later or I can find it out, I'll provide it another time in this space.

In the meantime, a couple of quotations attributed to other artists that may also serve to answer your rhetorical question:

"I am hitting my head against the walls, but the walls are giving way."

--Gustav Mahler

"To send light into the darkness of men's hearts--such is the duty of the artist."

--Robert Schumann

"A creative artist works on his next composition because he was not satisfied with his previous one."

--Dmitri Shostakovich

6:43 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

Just saw the Sunday Morning piece with Mr. Good- an amazing story. The mother returned to the Amazon because she found American life full of "loneliness and anxiety." One could almost hear millions of viewers saying that she just needed to toughen or "So what? How can you compare life in the Amazon to a mall? Get real, girl!"
Dr. Berman, if you recall from our lunch, I became proficient in Kyudo (Japanese archery) when I lived there. Kyudo is also a form of Zen; that is, the closer you get to the bulls-eye, the closer your mind and body are synchronized. It really gets to the heart of Japanese culture. In the USA we say I don't care how you get it done just get it done. In Japan they say here's how you get it done. Thus the suffix -kata meaning "way of" such as tabekata-way of eating and so on.

7:11 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Love the quote from Schumann, but I believe he did wind up in an asylum. This cd be my future as well, drooling, talking to myself, and beating my head against a padded wall.


Call Marla Penny to the stand! Do u remember the episode where Elaine is working on the Peterman catalog (theme: the urban sombrero) and Kramer talks to her abt kata? Turns out he was master of the dojo because everyone else was 11 or 12 yrs old. Plus, he got the concept from Star Trek. Anyway, she comes to the dojo, calls him a doofus, and throws him across the room.

Will this Japan bk ever see the light of day? I'm beginning to wonder. After it's out (if it is) I'm moving to Japan to study sumi-e, OR to Eastern Oregon, where I shall raise rhubarb. That's if I don't wind up like Robt Schumann.

Atode, tomodachi-


7:43 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...


I'm moved by your brief post on sumi-e & hope you'll expand on this in subsequent posts. And of course I hope we'll see it discussed thoroughly in your Japan book, which I'll happily buy as a print-on-demand book if there's no other option.

On a similar note, the latest by Chris Hedges discusses imagination & vision, and the terrible lack thereof in contemporary life:

It seems to me that much of what you've written concerns the Sacred (for lack of another word) -- not necessarily any organized religious system, which eventually & seemingly invariably turns into a power structure -- but that Something More many of us can sense, even if we can't quite articulate it. I suppose poets, artists, musicians, filmmakers, visionaries, etc., have done that for us over the centuries; but each of us needs it to some degree, I think. People like Jung have tried to recapture it in terms acceptable to (so-called) civilized societies.

Frankly, I can't imagine a better way of describing the world as it stands today, than by saying that far too many people have lost their souls ... thrown them away, traded them for empty gadgets, cut out their own hearts as a sacrifice to the gods of Wealth, Status, Power. And then they wonder why they feel so empty & frightened. Well, some of them do, anyway. Others simply accept their diminished state as The Way Things Are.

12:39 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...

Helpful quotes on art, madness, and destiny from Samuel Beckett.

The confusion is not my invention. We cannot listen to a conversation for five minutes without being aware of the confusion. It is all around us and our only chance now is to let it in. The only chance of renovation is to open our eyes and see the mess. It is not a mess you can make sense of.

To find a form that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now.

Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.

We are all born mad. Some remain so.

What do I know of man's destiny? I could tell you more about radishes.

Based on how often the word rhubarb is used to describe skirmishes in baseball, I thought there would be some Zen-like quotes on the subject from either Yogi the yogi or Cardinal Casey, but if they're out there then the all-knowing internet doesn't know about them yet. Omniscience, like Yogi's future, ain't what it used to be.

Can the rhubarb idea, and stick with the sumi-e...if you encounter an artistic block, you can always hang out at a Tokyo Spanish restaurant (like La Taperia) and use your ink to write for the might even write "Krapp's Last Tapa".

2:44 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don't post Anons, so you'd do best to pick a handle and resubmit. Possible handles include Cranston Butterworth III, and Fritz Schmaltzkopf.


Yeah, Chris' latest is pretty much a summary of "The Reenchantment of the World," to be honest. Of course, bringing back the sacred has its own set of problems, as I discuss in CTOS (the ch. on Nazism being the most obvious case in pt).


7:01 PM  
Blogger NearFar said...


If you’re still looking to translate your new book into Japanese, here’s some contact information on two translators:(1) Rick Tanaka and (2) Larry Korn who may be of interest:

1. Rick Tanaka( ), worked closely with David Holmgren on a public speaking and teaching tour of Japan in 2004. Since then he has translated and negotiated the publication of both “Permaculture Principles and Pathways Beyond Sustainability” and “Future Scenarios” into Japanese. Rick has had a diverse career in the media, managing rock bands, broadcasting, and is an author of several books in Japanese and in English and translator of several books."

2. Larry Korn ( ), a student of Masanobu Fukuoka, helped translate and edit the English language version of Fukuoka’s “The One-Straw Revolution” and (& now “Sowing Seeds in the Desert: Natural Farming, Global Restoration, and Ultimate Food Security”). Korn is also an educator, consultant, editor and author in the fields of permaculture, natural farming, sustainable landscaping and local food production.

Here’s a terrific essay by David Holmgren, “Permaculture in Japan: Foreign Idea or Indigenous Design?” *Please" check it out at your convenience:

BTW Wafers, Holmgren (along w/ Bill Mollison) is the co-originator of the term “permaculture." Here's my connection: I’ve been taking a “Permaculture Design Course” (PDC) since March of this year (here in North Carolina). I should finish the course this July & get my 'Certification' ( According to Holgren's most recent essays (ie., "Retrofitting the Suburbs for Sustainability") permaculture defines a creative response to a scenario that he sometimes refers to as ‘creative descent’ (quote): “In the “creative descent” scenario, which I consider to represent the only truly sustainable future, human society creatively descends the energy demand slope essentially as a ‘mirror image’ of the creative energy ascent that occurred between the onset of the industrial revolution and the present day.”

Of course, I'm sure MB has been talking & writing about this kind of thing for 3 or 4 decades now (haven't you Dr. B?). Nothing new here for most Wafers. So one caveat before I recommend taking a PDC course: *emigrate* first. No joke. Are you listening? Don’t let any "bull shit" stop you (let’s just say my own “ego” miscalculated the other “scenarios,” if you're wondering why I'm still here). That’s right, Wafers, you can take a PDC almost anywhere in the world: ie., what a great way to establish your credibility (ie., not comporting yourself like an 'American') in another country by getting involved in a permaculture group over *there*. Again, if you’re hesitating to emigrate, *do not hesitate.* If you can’t leave the U$A right now, then get your PDC certification as a kind of NMI option now. By all means. It's terrific.

9:18 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the info. I'll be sure to check out the Holmgren essay, since I discuss this stuff in the final chapter of my Japan bk. Regarding translation into Japanese: I actually do have a potential Japanese publisher, and I'm guessing they have their own translators to draw on. This was one happy outcome of my lectures at the U of Tokyo. The unhappy situation remains that I can't seem to find an American publisher, and the J publisher wants me to do that 1st. It's not a question of ideology, except insofar as in the US, money *is* the ideology (see WAF for extensive discussion of this; I'm a victim of the very pathology I describe). I can't get into it now, but the pretzel logic is amazing: I get revs from university presses literally raving abt the bk, with comments I'd love to put in blurbs on the back cover; followed by, "there's no way we can market this." Even w/univ. presses, it's all abt money, and nothing else; and as we all know, my royalty income amounts to bupkis. My bad, thinking that quality wd carry the day. What, indeed, was I thinking??! I'd rather these publishers wrote, "This bk is a piece of shit; we're going to publish it." Anyway, I keep soldiering on, altho eventually (like, soon) I think I'll give up the writing life and get into permaculture; or rhubarb. Every single institution in the US is a farce, bar none.


11:44 AM  
Blogger Lex ov said...

Howdy Wafers,

Chris Hedges comes up a lot in the comments of this blog. I have great respect for him and for what he writes. His writing however differs from yours Morris - as you yourself have underlined - in that it's more theological/spiritual than historical. However, I don't think this has to do exclusively with the different training you guys received.

In the following interview with Bill Moyers, we learn that Chris has 4 children. When asked (at 42'25) "how can you introduce another life into the world you describe?" by Bill,Chris replies "it's a very good question".

This makes me wonder, to what extent is someone's stance on the state of the world influenced by whether or not someone has children? I am curious, would Chris have the same views/write the same columns had he not had children? Had he not had that much to lose?

This doesn't make what he writes any less "true" of course, but I sometimes have the impression that the spiritual side of his posts is perhaps too heavily influenced by this. I really feel like he sometimes still believes in some kind of uprising when, let's be honest, it's not going to happen.

This then brings a larger question. Assuming one of the goals of wafers is to disseminate information among people with a minimum level of education and minimum level of already-existing waferdom. If those people, once they have children, develop a tendency for "false-hope" solutions - in that case much more idealistic than what Chris suggests as they are probably not as smart as him - shouldn't we just drop all efforts to "convert" potential wafers with kids?

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Kevin said...

Interview (two parts) with Larry Korn on Fukuoka:

4:15 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


My own feeling is that Wafers need not be pessimistic--in the long term. Hence, we've discussed things like Dual Process and post-capitalist solutions on this blog, because my impression is that Wafers believe there is light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. It's just that it's going to be a long, and painful, tunnel, as it was when the medieval world gave way to modernity. ("You don't get history for free," is how I like to put it.) For various reasons, I believe this transition will be the worst in the US, whereas Japan, for example, might be another story (tho I cd be wrong). The real question is whether we can indeed, in 40 or 50 yrs, seriously move to a steady-state, eco-sustainable socioeconomic formation, or whether the neofeudalism that has arisen in the US (surveillance state, militarization of the police, corruption of the courts, gated communities, a superrich 1%, or even 0.1%, etc.) might become worldwide and semi-permanent. Beyond the disintegration of capitalism, this is the struggle of our time.

As for 'progressives', they are surely fools, as I have often said, because they can't or won't understand "la longue duree," and how history really operates. They hang on to a vision of a radically reformed US when America has been the same for 400-plus yrs now; and their goal is a wider sharing of the American Dream, not the abolition of it--which of necessity has to take place. But to address your question of the kid-factor, many progressives have false hopes and no kids--OWS being a case in pt (mostly young people, I believe). Kids or no kids, American progressives are suffused with American exceptionalism and optimism, even when these are passe and unwarranted, because they are in our DNA, so to speak. Garrison Keillor put it best when he said that we have the ability to look reality rt in the eye and deny it.

As for Chris, he's doing impt work, but he's basically caught between heart and head. So like Chomsky, Michael Moore, and others, he is given to talk abt a future socialist democracy, or predict mass popular uprisings, etc. when he really does know none of this will come to pass. Chris is no fool: he knows the US is finished. He just wants it not to be, and many people are probably in that camp, kids or no kids.

It's hard to say personally where I'd stand if I had children; I have no idea whether that wd make any difference. I do know that I'd do my best to get them permanently out of the country. But this goes beyond wanting a better future for them. Basically, I don't want them to be raised as Americans, because the value-system here is screwed up, and it always has been, as I show in WAF. I want them to be full, real human beings, and that's not likely, growing up in the US.

Two vignettes from Japan, which I am abt to leave after 5 wks in Asia:

1. The sumi-e lesson I described earlier: the teacher showed me some of his own work, and I wanted to buy one painting. But I didn't have the $ on me, so told him I'd go to an ATM and return the next day. He said fine, AND gave me the painting to take with me, sans payment. How many artists or merchants in the US wd give a complete stranger, and a foreigner to boot, a valuable bit of merchandise and say, "I'll c.u. tomorrow"? But this is how the Japanese operate.

2. National championships in sumo wrestling are currently on TV here, and I've been watching a bit of it. Most of any match is preparation, as in "The 7 Samurai"; the actual wrestling takes 4 seconds. When one wrestler knocks the other one down, or pushes him out of the ring, he then extends a hand to his defeated opponent and helps him up. It doesn't get any more un-American than this.

(continued below)

5:59 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Finally, as for "converting" Americans to Waferdom: again, I doubt the kid factor is that crucial. Kids or no kids, Americans don't want to hear our message; it's far too threatening, and thus NMI's are like the few remaining literate people in "Fahrenheit 451" (Bradbury), or the 'natives' living on the margins of society (Huxley). Even beyond that, as I've often said, Americans are simply not smart enough to grasp it. To be a true Wafer, you have to understand life in all of its maddening complexity; 99% of Americans can't do that. Things such as paradox and nuance are way beyond them, as the reaction to the Civil War ch. in WAF showed. They are capable only of thinking in B&W slogans, and also believe that emoting and thinking are the same thing. So if I present the argument that good and evil can not only coexist, but can even be intertwined, this cannot get processed in their brains. As Gene Genovese said yrs ago, all you hafta do is say that the antebellum South had some positive aspects to it, and Americans go nuts. The same stupidity will greet my Japan bk--you can count on it. (We've even had morons on this blog attacking the book w/o having read a word of it. Jesus, what hope do I have?) I'll say that I'm glad the Allies won the War, BUT that Japan actually did have a legitimate case for going to war. Americans will hear "legitimate case," but not "I'm glad the Allies won," and go completely ballistic.

It takes intelligence to be a Wafer. Most Americans don't have this, and so possibilities for "conversion" to Waferdom are rather minute. If this were not true, we'd be living in a very different country.

I hope I've answered yr questions.


6:20 PM  
Anonymous bb said...

Dr. MB,

What do you recommend for a Americ uni student like me? I kno I would like to get out of America, but I need to get an degree first.

I also have multiple passports and one is American. I am considering getting rid of it. Do you still have your Amer passport Dr. MB?

12:22 AM  
OpenID atearinrain said...


not surprised to read a Wafer go on and on about permaculture. When I discovered it a few years back I was in a state of shock for a few months, since the principles on which it is based are basically the opposite of America's value system. It is not just a guide to nurturing a healthy ecosystem that nurtures you back (spiritually as well as physically). Permaculture's principles can also serve as a recipe for a healthy cuture in general; a wise set of values for human relations with each other as well as their natural environment.

I second your advice to use a PDC as an opportunity to emigrate. Last year I took part in an apprenticeship program offered by a permaculture institute here in the States. In sum, I feel scammed. Afterwards it occurred to me that it makes perfect sense that something antithetical to American culture would be diluted, degraded and debased. I'm actually a little embarassed about falling for the trap, I really should've known better. Alas, marketing is what America excels at—all image, no substance. As for actually taking your advice, I don't think I could ever bring myself to leaving my family. It's possible that that's a "bull shit" cop out. They are typical Americans in many ways. Yet I do feel a very close bond to the people I've known my whole life, and suspect that without them I would be miserable for a different set of reasons.


what do you mean you don't like Stone's work?! Sorry, just more than a little surprised to read that.

12:33 AM  
Anonymous cubeangel said...

Dr. B

I understand what you're saying now. With regards to the antebellum south what you're saying is that there were excellent parts to it and bad parts to it. These parts interwoven together to help form the basis of their society almost like different parts of a clock working together in harmony. Am I correct or at least on the right track?

It's sort of like having Neapolitan ice cream and it is like a dna double helix.

With regards to people, people's rationality, emotion, and intuition is interwoven in a similar way and this is why pure logic is not enough to describe people. You make so much sense to me now. I get it now. I'm a true WAFer now.

By the way Dr. B I did try to cheer up a young lady in my forum I hang out at. She sees the same BS as well. Let's say I gave her the same advice you gave me and I made her feel all better.

I'm spreading WAFerism into my community. Most will not listen but a few will just like the rest of the world. Most want to conform to the American hustling dream which we both know is a bunch of bullshit.

12:44 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I never said I didn't like it. Go back, read what I wrote. If u wanna be a true Wafer, don't misquote or simplify. Thanks. (I do, however, unequivocally, dislike Kim Jong Un's haircut, which I think is a disgrace. Yes, you may quote me.)


Yr German (bb = bis bald)? Keep yr American passport; the more passports u have, the better. And since you have other ones, don't stick around for an American degree. Go to college in Germany (or wherever), you'll learn a lot more. Today--yes, today--apply for student status at a European university. Not tomorrow, mein Schatz; today.

bis bald,

12:52 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Clock analogy may be too mechanical...I guess I have something more organic in mind. As for converting others, you may have more success if you start out promoting pastrami and other deli meats, then sneaking in a Waferian discussion while they're not looking. But remember, if yr talking to Americans, there's a brain damage factor that can't be overlooked. As for me, I miss sitting around on the verandah, having Rufus serve me a mint julep, while I'm waitin' for the Robert E. Lee. (Just you wait: you'll see how many trolls will cite this as 'proof' of my racism. Americans! Ya gotta love 'em!)


2:19 AM  
Blogger Sir Tagio said...

Wafers might appreciate this really well-done "Postcard from the End of America: Manhattan," which presents a slice of life of those jettisoned from our "riches to rags" economy.

Here's a snippet that (I believe) certainly resonates with MB's perspective:

"To be fair, the panhandlers hounding this Mickey D’s are a direct result of having two homeless shelters half a block away, and they don’t usually come inside. In any case, step outside this corporate fortress and Washington Heights is still a wonderful mess of small stores and eateries. Isn’t it telling that the most lively streets and neighborhoods in America are filled with recent immigrants? They haven’t been here long enough to become zombies, and don’t think I’m talking racially now for European cities are also much more exuberant and life-affirming than their American sisters, many of which have become desolate and menacing. Strapped to automobiles and conditioned to stare at one screen after another, bona fide Americans dread eye contact and the human breath. Alienated from all those nearest to us, we expect to be saved and led by our distant brainwashers and slave masters."

9:46 AM  
Blogger Publius said...

@Prof. Berman:
I went to the central library last week, and got a book off the racks by random browsing:
Questioning technology : a critical anthology

To my surprise and delight, two of the selections are from your book, The Reenchantment of the World!
You're in good company, with Lewis Mumford, Russell Means, etc. I look forward to reading this on my big trip.

In others news, my company becomes more "American" by the week. My remaining best friend "got in trouble" for hosting a seminar on ADHD, even though she thought she'd cleared it with legal and HR. She has a warning on her record, for showing initiative, and creating something threatening to HR, for the "perceptions" it might cause.

I can't wait to enjoy not being here for a while.

11:21 AM  
Blogger k_pgh said...

Dear Dr. Berman and WAFers,

Here is a charming little article: The Dangerous Rise of Social Media in the Operating Room

Strangely unremarked upon is the apparent failure of the other physicians to say anything to the techno-narcissists in their midst. You know, something like: “Um, Steve, our patient has been blue for fifteen minutes. Perhaps you could put down your iToy and give her some oxygen.”

The take home message is that if you must have surgery in the United States make sure that your insurance covers the costs of hiring a non-American grandmother to oversee the physicians.

For duty and humanity, O & D.

11:22 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

"Millennials have grown up in a world where you are never forced to see, hear or read anything that you haven’t personally selected. 7,000 TV channels, a DVR to skip commercials, millions of websites—we have been able to curate our own little worlds using technology, wherein nothing unpleasant or offensive can creep in. So when we’re forced to sit through a commercial or, heaven forbid, listen to someone talk who isn’t Mary-freakin’-Poppins, we can’t handle it.

The entire point of college is to be exposed to different things: Different types of people, different ideas—and maybe some of those people will hail from organizations that negatively impacted poor countries, or maybe they were partly responsible for a war that ate up the country’s resources and resulted in human rights abuses and lots of needless death. But if, at the end of your time as an undergrad, you haven’t learned that oftentimes you find great wisdom in shitty people, or just that there might be some value in hearing what someone you don’t like or respect might have to say, what on earth have you learned?"

12:50 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and Wafers,

MB, Cube-

One time, down in Mississippi, a kid comes up to me in a white jacket, hands me a mint julep and a Ritz cracker with chopped liver, he says "Canapes," I say, "Can o' peas my ass:! That's a Ritz cracker and chopped liver."

Have a safe flight home, MB.



1:11 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...


I must second MB’s advice. I have been teaching at various US universities (still do online, from the comfort and safety of my European residence). I assure you that today all US schools prostitute themselves for federal student loans and grants. All of them, starting with Harvard, Yale, MIT are crap. They are all diploma mills. Keep in mind that the US is now similar to a stolen car parked in a chop shop, being dismembered and sold for parts on the black market. The education system is at the forefront of this practice.

MB’s advice to get a German degree is excellent. Germany still provides quality education. A German passport will afford you almost free education, and access to top notch health care. Similarly, if your other passport is from a British Commonwealth nation, places like Singapore, Malta, and others have a lot to offer a young person, and they also speak English.

As far as the US passport is concerned, I would keep it. I keep mine. Just try not to act like an American when you are abroad. Also, try to shed your American accent, as it’s rapidly becoming an embarrassment these days.

1:43 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Sorry, but I can't get into an elaborate Civil War discussion once again. I did it when the bk came out, refuted my critics, and folks like u can't tolerate that I fully substantiated my pt of view, both in the text and in the subsequent discussion. It is simply untrue that I ignored sources that disagreed with me, or that I followed the "Lost Cause" line. I did neither. The true lost cause is yr dishonest attack on my work. You lost the argument, pal; time to lick yr wounds and go elsewhere. People like you are finally boring. You can't tolerate paradox and nuance, that level of complexity, and finally you come off as just another dumb American--which is what you are. Enuf already, eh? Find another blog, and annoy *them*. (*That*, I hope you can understand.)


7:57 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Check out my essay, "The Black Hole of Bethesda." I think it's in the QOV collection, but I can't remember for sure.


8:02 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...

Conflating your post & Jeff T's, I just knew that you would like to have this white-jacketed Rufus in your arsenal in case the anti-racist trolls pop-round claiming that you meant something untoward.

It ain't no kinda mil-spec defense, but I hope this gives y'all some little Can o'Pee of protection.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don't know if Rufus W. will be of much help to me vs. the Civil War troll crowd, but thanks anyway. Clowns like Jason: they'll never wake up. Not gonna happen. And on one level, I'm glad: this is what makes America what it is.


9:30 PM  
Blogger Lex ov said...

Thanks for answering my question Morris.

I am aware that some people cannot and will never be converted. Thank god they exist to a certain extent, we'd have no douchebags to provide entertainment on this blog otherwise!

I was really talking about people who already have a pre-existing level of "waferdom" in them. I DO believe that those people can be given a push to really let go and live a more genuine wafer life. I just think that if those people have kids, that "mission" is doomed. I am not talking about people who move to an ecovillage or any other alternative community with their kids. This is different. I am talking about people who still remain in the collapsing empire, are on the verge of exiting towards living a more fulfilling life, but suddenly have kids and REMAIN living the way they always were out of fear.

I could ramble about this for pages and pages. Chris Hedges was just a mise-en-bouche really... It's a discussion more suited for a pub probably. If you ever come to London, happy to discuss over a pint ;-)

8:51 AM  
Blogger NearFar said...

Thanks MB-

I hear you, although even now I'm thinking of you & the Joe Bageant connection, b/c he had to publish his final book(s) (if I'm not mistaken) in Australia (& Holmgren lives & works from there). But that's beside the point now. You're exploring other avenues right now. But you're being "penalized," and your situation reminds me of this quote from Immanuel Wallerstein's essay "Structural Crisis, Or Why Capitalists May No Longer Find Capitalism Rewarding":

"In my view, for a historical system to be considered a capitalist system, the dominant or deciding characteristic must be the persistent search for the endless accumulation of capital--the accumulation of capital in order to accumulate more capital. And for this characteristic to prevail, there must be mechanisms that penalize any actors who seek to operate on the basis of other values or other objectives, such that these nonconforming actors are sooner or later eliminated from the scene, or at least severely hampered in their ability to accumulate significant amounts of capital."


Thanks for your response. Much appreciated. My introduction to permaculture has not been as troubling as your experience of the process getting co-opted by the "bigger" socio-economic reality here in the States. Ie., my PDC instructor asked for no money upfront, then suggested payment on a "sliding scale." Then when I asked if it was ok for my girlfriend to take the course on a scholarship basis, because of real economic hardship, he accepted those terms without question. So she's taking the course at no charge. So I thought: "aha! and eureka! No hustle here from this guy! Let's see where this PDC course leads ‘cause this ain’t your usual arsehole-americano hustle". But I’d like to address the other issue you raise, but can't now, because of lack of space. Without knowing the specifics of your situation, I'm troubled by what sounds like mere "excuses" for not emigrating. I'll try to mention why I’m troubled in a follow-up post. That is, if you don't mind? Here's my email if you want to talk about this in another forum: roess2014_@_yahoo {dot} com. Probably a better idea. Drop me a line anytime.

9:31 AM  
Anonymous Troutbum said...

Dr. MB and fellow WAFers:

Today, I wish to call your attention to William Blum who has chronicled over 50 instances of the United States Govt. overthrowing, or attempting to overthrow, a foreign government since the Second World War. He also has a list of 20 instances since the Second World War of the United States attempting to suppress a populist or nationalist movement.

Your tax dollars at work, forever seeking to expand and maintain the empire.

10:13 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

As we seek ways to amuse ourselves while observing the inexorable denouement of our democracy--such as it was--perhaps the following link can provide a momentary, if depressing, diversion:

12:38 PM  
Blogger Publius said...

@Lex ov: I have a child. I consider myself a WAFer.

In fact, I met with a fellow WAFer last weekend who was driving his moving van through town, and staying overnight. We had a great time...
He has a child, and he and his wife have already made the decision to leave the USA and start a different kind of life.

I don't think children have much effect on whether one is a WAFer or not. I think that my child makes me MORE likely to leave the USA, because I know that he would have the potential for a better life elsewhere.

I do think that how one thinks of one's children may correlate with whether or not one is a WAFer. To people who consider their children to be accoutrements of the American Dream, WAFerdom is not conceivable. To people who see their children as their own, beautiful, unique beings, worthy of nourishment and encouragement to become whatever they have innate potential for: they are susceptible to becoming WAFers.

1:11 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and Wafers,

MB, Wafers-

In a ceremonial speech at the September 11 Museum, President Obama said, " Like the great bedrock that embrace us today, nothing can ever *break* us, nothing can *change* us as Americans." Obama got that one right! Jesus, what on earth *will* change us, break us?


2:08 PM  
Anonymous SteveR said...

I'm glad to see the mention of Japan's arguably valid, certainly understandable, reasons for going to war in 1941. Back in the days when I was what my then-girlfriend called an "armchair warmonger" I used to read a lot of WW2 histories, and I have to confess I'm still interested in reading the more recent translations of foreign materials that were never part of the mainstream. If you read the memoirs of Japanese participants, they truly felt that they had no choice if they were going to remain a viable nation free of Western dominance. That in no way excuses the atrocities they subsequently committed, but it sure makes it clearer why they were at war in the first place. As I say, it's good to see that somebody else is aware. I happen to know a lot of people who never progressed beyond that "armchair warmonger" state and if you ever say anything to them about alternate Japanese motivations, their reaction is something to behold!

7:59 PM  
OpenID atearinrain said...

I interpreted "not crazy about" as slang for "not fond of" since that's how I've commonly heard the phrase used in real life. No big deal, you're entitled to your opinion regardless of what that may be. I was just wondering what it was you're not crazy about, figured you'd be a big fan of his. Just stop yelling at me!!! (That was also a joke btw).

11:58 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


YOU NEED TO BE YELLED AT!!! Well, Stone is a long discussion. In brief, he asks the rt questions and often comes up with sloppy or dubious answers. What we need is a good Oliver Stone, and we don't have that.


This is the type of paradox I'm talking abt, wh/dumb Americans (sorry for the redundancy) simply can't understand, whether it's the Civil War or the Cold War or the Pacific War. John Dower says the challenge is to simultaneously hold the Japanese accountable for those atrocities while recognizing that the West had boxed them into an impossible situation (which can actually be traced back to Commodore Perry).


We're breaking *ourselves*. I love it, every time a trollfoon shows up here, because we might have a chance if more than half the country had half a brain. And it's impt that we not have that chance, since it's our historical moment to fall apart, and since our way of life is killing everything decent and worthwhile. So every time another jackass makes an appearance here, I say: "Good on yer, mate! Keep the douchebaggery coming! Never change, never reflect, never look any deeper than your preconceived opinions! This is precisely what we need."


9:02 AM  
Anonymous SteveR said...

Given your very recent experiences in Vietnam, what do you make of this week's anti-Chinese riots? They seem uncharacteristic of the Vietnamese people from what I've heard. Lingering deep-seated resentment over colonial occupation that ended a thousand years ago? Bitterness over their more recent war that we somehow escaped with ours? It all seems very odd.

9:58 AM  
Anonymous cubeangel said...

More evidence that it is our historical moment to fall apart.

This kid is not a criminal. He lives in criminal society.

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Capo Regime said...


Welcome back! Very interesting notes from Japan and Vietnam! I once spent two weeks in Vietnam and like you found the people warm, sensitive and just delightful companions. Loved the food too.

A strange connection on your comment to tear probably due to reading a lot of Arthur Koestler lately. The idea that we need a better Oliver Stone or a new leader or a new Chomsky or new MLK or any other leader to presumably raise conciousness or lead people to some new utopia. I think it was Hoffer who said that a truly vibrant society/culture does not need leaders. The more big shots are venerated (and big institutions) the worse things are. That I frequently come into contact with people who either tell me they went to Yale or somebody went to Harvard and knew Obama the more I distrust their judgement. Rambling a bit today but I think you understand my point. When a people need somebody to save them or wake them up its fair to say they are far gone (all due respect to Carlyle).

As for the kids or no kids discussion some argue its our genetic mission, though I disagree our mission is to evolve our conciousness or selves while plodding around the surface of earth. Though my four kids and 6 grandkids have added incredible joy to my life. If not for them I would have dissipated my life Polanco with many forays to Paris cafes and russian models--not a bad way to go either.

Bienvenido a casa!

4:37 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


It was Brecht who wrote, "Unhappy is the nation that needs a hero." Which is probably true. But I do think we need leaders, or enlightened critics, and my problem with Oliver is that he is rather muddled, too often to be genuinely helpful.


My history is fuzzy at this point, but I believe VN invaded Cambodia in 1978, and then was at war with China in 1979.


10:13 PM  
Anonymous Andy Tithler said...

Any thoughts on the election of Narendra Modi and majority BJP win in India? What of the talk about Hindu nationalism? Seems he he did well due to high economic growth in Gujurat when he was chief minister.

Also, the US had revoked his visa in 2002 after his response to the killing of 1000 Muslims, and we just recently restarted a relationship with Modi. What will relationship between the US and India be in the future?

I watched "Red Ant Dream", and it seems industrialization of India is unstoppable with the resistance of peasants very small.

How will all of this play out? What is it the Indian people want? Any similarities to past nationalism in Japan in response to British imperialism and western military force?

9:21 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I'm really tired of having this argument abt the Civil War (how many times do I hafta refute you guys, b4 you quit? Yes, infinity, I know), and as for my Japan bk, you haven't even read it (not that that wd ever get in the way of yr premature critique! Why be informed, when you can just blindly attack?). It's you who have the problem, amigo; you literally can't read what's on the printed page (or you haven't even read it). Your problem is that of most Americans: you see something that disagrees with your world view, so instead of actually following the argument, or checking the sources (Woodward and Genovese, two of America's finest; why not blame them as well? Oh yeah, they're dead, not much satisfaction in dancing on their graves, I guess), you project the blame onto the author--making sure you'll learn zip. Which is quite evident. Anyway, I'm not going to post you in your various incarnations; it's a real waste of my time (and yours, if you had half a brain to see it). Nothing can change a "mind" like yrs; of that, I'm fairly certain. Yr little more than a robot, and robot's aren't big on self-awareness, as far as I can make out.

However, in terms of future judgment of my work, you and yours cd very well "win." There are very few critical thinkers left in the US these days (what cd be more obvious?), and you don't seem to be among them (talk abt understatement!). But you definitely outnumber the folks who are capable of difficult research, evidence, nuance, and paradox. What a triumph, eh? Clearly, you have much to celebrate.

Of course, you might, like Ivan Ilych in Tolstoy's story, have a flicker of self-realization on your deathbed; but in your case, I tend to doubt it. Just be aware I'm not going to be reading your "contributions" anymore, which amount to little more than a broken record. I often wonder why folks like u don't get tired of this activity; but then you probably don't have much else going on in yr life, which would explain it.

I shd also add that a major pt I wanted to make in my critique of American Manichaean behavior is that by *never* seeing *anything* gd abt our enemy, whether it's the South, or Russia, or Japan, or fill in the blank, is that it guarantees (as Gore Vidal often said) that we never really learn anything, and just keep doing the same damn thing over and over again. Even Henry Kissinger pointed out that Americans simply can't grasp the viewpt of the Other. This too, along w/hustling, is why America failed/is failing. There really is no hope, and you are emblematic of this disease; a perfect embodiment of it, really.

Godspeed, mon cher.


10:34 PM  
Anonymous Vince said...


I thought that this commentary on Guy McPherson's site was right inline with what you have trying to tell people for years.

I hope that you are enjoying your trip.

I was wondering if you might consider a follow up to your book "A Question of Values"? Perhaps you could include some of the observations fellow WAFERS have contributed on this blog on our sad state of affairs. Proposed title of the book: "A Question of Values All But Forgotten".

May you have a safe trip back. Perhaps we could talk Carolyn Baker into interviewing you on the Lifeboat Hour. She took over for Michael Ruppert after his death.


11:43 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I'm back, fending off trollfoons. I tell you, they make my day. But then so do techno-buffoons. Check it out:


3:08 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

OMG! There's a piece of trash sitting in the Oval Office!

4:20 AM  
Anonymous SteveR said...

FWIW, and with the caveat that nobody asked me: Our government's reaction to the recent India election results may be giving us a preview of whether we have any true long-term economic strategy. The post-WW2 pattern seems to be that whoever has a large low-cost labor force along with basic industrial infrastructure grabs the lion's share of manufacturing. At first it was Japan, knocked to the bottom of the ladder by bombing in the war. Initially they became the center for cheap shoddy junk, and "made in Japan" was a warning of low quality. But thanks to Deming, Juran et al they evolved into just the opposite, and for a long time they were riding high. Their low-cost workers, though, became a higher-priced middle class which eroded their labor cost advantage. By then China had sorted themselves out and done some basic industrialization. Once Mao was gone and they were able to be more pragmatic about politics and economics, they shoved Japan aside and assumed the role of low-dollar manufacturing for the world. But now they're showing signs of developing their own higher-cost middle class, and their workforce has already started to shrink thanks to their One Child policy. These things are pushing them down the same path that Japan took. Once their labor cost advantage erodes, who's next? I'd guess it's India. They have what Japan and China started with: Massive numbers of low-cost workers, literate, with a fairly extensive industrial infrastructure in place. We have some time before their rise eclipses China; it would be nice if our leaders understood what was at stake for the long term, and used the upcoming years to do something sensible for a change. So here (finally!) is my question: Do you think we will? Or will we continue to be reactive instead of proactive, squandering our long-term opportunities in favor of short-term policies? What do you think a post-China world will look like, and what's our role in it?

10:11 AM  
Anonymous turnover said...

NYT "What Do Pregnant Women Want?"

The author searched for patterns about pregnancy on the internet. This tidbit came up, demonstrating the difference btwn USA and Mexico:

"It is also instructive to look at what expectant fathers are searching for. In Mexico, the top searches about “my pregnant wife” include “frases de amor para mi esposa embarazada” (words of love to my pregnant wife) and “poemas para mi esposa embarazada” (poems for my pregnant wife). In the United States, the top searches include “my wife is pregnant now what” and “my wife is pregnant what do I do.”

2:34 PM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Not that any of this is news, but a little more about the state of American education:

Comments are especially pointed, such as this one:

It's the true American way, isn't it? Add a profit incentive to something (academia, health care) that shouldn't be motivated by profit, and let 'er rip.

Or this one:

One word can be used to sum up the cause behind the incredible array of near-disasters that this country faces right now: GREED. From our paralysis over climate change to the for-profit scam that has become our university system, our horrific healthcare system to our total inability to maintain our country's physical infrastructure, the incredible, insatiable American greed underlies everything.


I wonder if people like Frank keep writing in because they sense or realize, at least on some level, that you're simply telling it like it is -- and being brought face-to-face with it is more than they can stand. They've got to attack & destroy anything, anyone, that threatens their incredibly fragile worldview. After all, a soap bubble must be guarded & handled with great delicacy, or else it bursts.

3:20 PM  
Anonymous Mikbeth said...


Attached is a link to a fascinating 4 part series on the Story of Maths that aired on BBC a few years ago.

Now for the twist. On Mother's Day my in-laws were visiting. In episode 1 of the show above, the host demonstrated the elegant method the Egyptians used for multiplying and dividing. When I bothered to demonstrate the method, everyone was visibly unimpressed and almost annoyed with me.

The highlight of their day was texting various emoticons that illustrated various animals defecating and other such bathroom humor to one another.

And my wife wonders why I don't particularly enjoy these visits!

5:45 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


There is no end to the Franks, really. They constitute a buffoonami that won't quit. Of course, they may not be aware of the earlier discussions on this blog re: WAF ch. 4; but the endless insistence that I drew on "Lost Cause" material, when I actually drew on Woodward and Genovese (and Foner and Jas Macpherson), is really tedious. And now, of course, they're onto my Japan bk--which has yet to see the light of day! I suspect a lot of these attacks are just perverse, or, as you say, the need to hang onto a world view. Cf. the reaction to the proposed Hiroshima exhibit at the Smithsonian in 1995; Jesus, what an object lesson that was! Nothing must disturb America's sacred mythologies, and Frank and his crowd are definitely into sacred mythology.

The ironic thing, at least as far as the Civil War goes, is that I started out *believing* the usual story, that the war was originally waged to end slavery. But even when you read proponents of the "let freedom ring" schl, such as Foner or Macpherson, a closer rdg reveals that no, they actually believe the primary motivation was a clash of cultures, i.e., what *I* am arguing. This knocked my socks off when I discovered it. Anyway, I wound up having to change my own world view on the C.W., and ch. 4 is very well documented and substantiated in that regard. Ftnote 41, for example, is an extended attempt to sort out the Fogel-Engerman thesis, and the issue of the political economy of slavery. The Frank crowd doesn't understand any of this, because like most Americans, they think in slogans; which additionally means that they cannot grasp the paradoxical notion that good and evil can be intertwined. But if I say to them, Listen, schmendricks, I just can't keep rehashing an argument that was debated 2 yrs ago on this blog, then to them I'm running away from it. What can ya do w/these jokers, finally? America no longer has an a critical mass of trained historical minds among the populace, if it ever did, and probably not even 1% know how to think critically. But no, I'm supposed to keep arguing w/these clowns to the end of time (which they apparently have in abundance, unlike me).

It all makes me feel bad for my poor Japan bk, in advance, to think of these fucked-up Berman-haters writing revs of it. No matter that 2 univ. presses described it with phrases like "strikingly intelligent," or "better analysis than George Steiner." No, the Frank crowd will peg it as a pro-Axis Powers bk, no matter what I actually say in the text. "Against stupidity," wrote Schiller, "even the gods struggle in vain."


10:20 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

And finally, why didn't Nouvelle observateur do an interview w/these cutting-edge intellects?:

10:52 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Merry Victoria Day, Y'all:

Yes, Capo Regime, Thomas Carlyle, despite his hero worship, was likely a proto-Wafer. His 1829 Signs of the Times could have been written by our Morris:

"Were we required to characterise this age of ours by any single epithet, we should be tempted to call it, not an Heroical, Devotional, Philosophical, or Moral Age, but, above all others, the Mechanical Age.

It is the Age of Machinery, in every outward and inward sense of that word; the age which, with its whole undivided might, forwards, teaches and practises the great art of adapting means to ends. Nothing is now done directly, or by hand; all is by rule and calculated contrivance. For the simplest operation, some helps and accompaniments, some cunning abbreviating process is in readiness. Our old modes of exertion are all discredited, and thrown aside. On every hand, the living artisan is driven from his workshop, to make room for a speedier, inanimate one. The shuttle drops from the fingers of the weaver, and falls into iron fingers that ply it faster."

And Vince, that article about floating down a Panamanian river was loverly. I wonder, though, if the author paddled his dinghy to Panama or did he take Pan-American Airlines. If it was the latter...

My missus noted the other day how the parking lot in front of the local bakery/organic foods store was full of SUVs. We're surrounded by Bobos, Phone Zombies and Trollfoons. What, no Wampeters?

O&D, and No General But Ludd Means The Poor Any Good.

12:05 AM  
Blogger Publius said...

@Prof. Berman: I'm officially asking for your blessing, as we leave on Tuesday for foreign shores, with one of the express purposes being to seek a new country. Besides seeing how we find the cultures, I am also getting information from old archives that I need to apply for residency based on an awesome pathway one nation provides, if your grandparent(s) came from that nation!

Anyway, forgive me if I turn this blog comment section into a confessional, but - tonight, I finally digitized a cassette tape that my now deceased father made in 1989. I recorded the tape for my half-sister. I surmise he never sent it, since I found it among his belongings. Anyway, it was very painful and emotional to listen to: the confessions of man who perceived himself (rightly) to have been a bad father, due to his addictions and mental illness.
Something struck me as positive, though. My father was trying to make amends, and to admit that he had been abusive, and had failed.
In America today, to even try to suggest that we have failed as a nation is to invite abuse. You WILL be reviled.
My father at least tried to make amends. He believed that you needed to at least admit you had failed.
By the end of his life, he was, indeed, a better person somehow. Almost, or actually, a spiritual transformation.

One senses that America, as a nation, will never have that lying in the gutter moment that lucky addicts have, when they finally admit to themselves that they have to either change or die.

Somehow, I think that pathetic in in the gutter experience is actually more deserved by progressives than conservatives. Conservatives don't pretend to be nice. Progressives have chosen to vote for a psychopathic, drone-killing a-hole who talks perty.
Sorry to be so... whatever it is I feel after just listening to my dead father's 25-year old confessions.

1:49 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


The US had a hit-bottom moment in 1975, after the debacle of Vietnam, Watergate, and the shame of the nation. That's how Jimmy accidentally got into office. But we never did the 12 steps, really, beyond the Church Senate hearings, and by the late 70s the country was back to its old ways of thinking, w/Jimmy unfortunately getting influenced by Zbigniew Brzezinski in foreign policy. By 1980, we were so 'back on track', i.e. fucked up, that we elected Reagan, and the rest is history. His daughter wrote an accusatory memoir, which he publicly dismissed as fiction. In any case, gd luck on yr travels; I hope it works out.


7:14 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

The face of America today:

7:37 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

And also this (they actually are complementary, when u think abt it):

7:53 AM  
Anonymous JWO said...


Have a good trip and good luck!

WAF-ers: A good JHK post today on techno-buffoons:

12:53 PM  
Anonymous Jacko's Hologram said...

Turns out the Google Glass glasses are causing eye-pain because "The headset makes your eye do things it was never meant to do."

This stupid tech we are all inundated with is clearly causing more harm than good. Screen scanning is ruining people's ability to absorb information and now Google Glass (and its inevitable ilk) are causing our eyes to strain and tear up for days at a time.

We are such a stupid species. Truly the clever apes, not even close to the wise ones.

1:21 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


The only technology Americans need rt now is very simple: a crowbar, and a large tube of K-Y jelly, for extraction of head from rump.


2:09 PM  
Blogger Jeff T said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and Wafers,

The Gipper and Nancy tell us all to get stoned:


2:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Very moving, thanks!


6:12 PM  
Anonymous Mikbeth said...


Don't know if this has been posted before but Louis CK says it all about life and how cell phones are ruining are ability to experience life.

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...

Today I watched this 2005 clip again. The genius of Berman’s books is that when everybody was thinking like this creep in the video, Berman shouted: “bullshit!”

9:59 PM  

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