August 10, 2017

Advance Notice: Future Schedule

OK, Waferinos-

Let me lay out what's going on in Bermworld for the next 3 mos., for those of you who are interested.

1. I shall be in Italy during Sept. 11-Oct. 3. The blog will therefore be closed during Sept. 10-Oct. 4. I know that this will generate a lot of suffering for all of us, but at least it's only for three wks.

2. I shall be giving a lecture at Thos More College nr. Cincinnati at 7:30 pm on Oct. 27, then flying to NY for a few days. The 4th or 5th (I forget) NY Wafer Summit Meeting and lunch will take place at 1 p.m. on Oct. 29. During the next couple of wks, I wd appreciate it if those of you who plan to attend wd send me yr email address. That way, I can let you know the venue for the mtg. Wafers will be flying in from London, Paris, LA, and Bangkok for the event. But pls note: this is for those of you who are active participants on the blog. If you manage to post 3 or 4 times a year, pls do not write in, asking to attend. Thank you.

3. For hispanohablantes: my Japan book is about to appear in Spanish translation. I will be giving a series of lectures on it at UNAM in Mexico City during the week of Nov. 6, and then one lecture at FIL in Guadalajara on Nov. 27, at 7 p.m.

Thank you all for your patience. These are trying times. Trumpi may knock that ridiculous haircut off of Kim Jong Un's head with a nuclear missile, but this leaves the problem of Trumpi's ridiculous haircut. Tough call.



Anonymous James Allen said...

The little ankle-biters and their older siblings are getting ready to return to their daily babysitters in a couple of weeks. And American merchants are standing by.

An eagle-eyed Twit(terer) spotted a sign in a Walmart store--location not given--that read "Own the School Year LIKE A HERO". A store manager or one of hisher minions with no sense of irony had placed the thing above a rack of rifles.

Naturally corporate headquarters is falling all over itself apologizing. As they say, you can't make this shit up.

11:37 AM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Hi, MB!

Sorry I won't be able to make it to the get-together; I'm in the same boat as Gunnar, except with even less income! :^(

Well I found a couple things...

Woman's civil rights violated by cops, 2-year-old son burned while in police care

An Alabama woman arrested for traffic violations last year has sued two Tennessee law enforcement agencies, claiming her civil rights were violated and that her young son was horribly burned while in police custody. Because she's black, right?

Two suspects arrested for three armed carjackings in Metairie There were three armed carjackings in suburban Metairie, La., and the Jefferson Parish deputy's office have nabbed two persons who are suspected to have committed the crimes.

Such wonderful people from the One Exceptional Nation under God!

4:23 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

Dr. Berman,

I notice that I failed to wish you a happy birthday in the last post’s comments, so I want to wish you a belated happy birthday. In other news, the pummeling never stops…

More than 1 in 8 Americans are now alcoholics.

Widening health disparities between Appalachia and the rest of America.

The chronic lead poisoning of poor children in the United States.

5:35 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Speaking of opiates, my relief never showed up at work this morning. She apparently died a few hours ago from a heroin overdose. The fact that I just posted about the overdose epidemic a few days ago gave me the chills. Of course, she was a mean nasty bitch, but it still made me sad. Only 30 years old!

I don't think anyone mentioned it, but I just read about a group of girls who boiled water and dumped it all over their sleeping "friend" at a pajama party. Now she's disfigured for life with a bad case of PTSD. It made me think that the essence of WAFer philosophy is perhaps the deep, intuitive conviction that these things are NOT isolated incidents. On the contrary.

5:35 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Another proud american moment: In the Bronx, 11-12yo girls were having a sleepover.

When they were sleeping, the host of the sleepover poured boiling water on one of the girls causing 2nd degree burns all over her body.

That greatness is amazing--maybe the host was performing a General Chem experiment with boiling points?

usa! usa!

7:15 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

The growing youth Anarchist movement...

7:22 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

New Yorkers try to locate North Korea on a map:

Professor Mark Selden on North Korea:


8:18 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Considering all this ruckus over North Korea, I have been thinking about how similar Americans and North Koreans are. Both peoples worship a kleptocracy that steals from them at every opportunity. Both peoples are also mostly ignorant of the outside world and think that their country is the "greatest on Earth."

However, there are some differences. The average American is better off materially than the average North Korean (for now anyway). North Koreans probably have much stronger familial and community bonds than Americans do.

To end on a lighter note, have fun in Italy Dr. Berman!

9:54 PM  
Anonymous Gordon said...

“I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time -- when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness...

The dumbing down of American is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30 second sound bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentations on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance”
― Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

2:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I already prepare myself for night terrors and hefty doses of antidepressants during those three weeks in September. It will be a trying time for many Wafers I am sure.

I am flying to NYC on Sunday for a month. A shame it won't be during the Wafer summit but I do not despair in meeting you all one day.

Meanwhile, this is interesting:

Happy holidays!


3:40 AM  
Anonymous Jason Awuku said...

An interesting analysis of the visceral reaction to the Google memo.

5:41 AM  
Anonymous Mike Kelly said...

Hi Wafers and Dr. Berman,

Well, I just returned from my big journey down south, and I am happy to report to my fellow Wafers that the demise of America is well underway in South Carolina, North Carolina and Tennessee. The beautiful old city of Charleston is just one big traffic jam after another. They're selling off the old shoe and clothing stores downtown so they can add olive oil and vinegar merchants. Every possible structure is being condo-ized, with prices starting at $1 million plus. So much for Porgy and Bess; they had to move out a long time ago. Charleston will soon be known as Disney-Charleston. Meanwhile, it's all being slowly consumed by the ever-rising Atlantic Ocean.

I read the Charleston Post and Courier each day I was there, and the best story was about a Wisconsin company that wants to implant chips into its employees. This being the Bible Belt and all, the Post and Courier couldn't help but wonder if the chip was actually the Mark of the Beast. Having made that assertion, the Post and Courier reassured the Disney-Charlestonians that such a thing probably couldn't happen in the genteel Old South. I tried to search the archives from the Post and Courier to paste the link here, but I could not find the article. So, here's the NYT version for your reading pleasure.

Here's the money quote: “I know down the road, it’s going to be the next big thing, and we’re on the cutting edge of it.” Yeah, good luck with that, and God only knows that the outcome of such a thing will be.

9:12 AM  
Anonymous shenjingbing said...

Dr B -

Any chance you'll do a lecture in NYC on this trip? Yankee Stadium may be available in late October.

Gig -

Another similarity of Americans and North Koreans - the ones with half a brain are trying to get the heck out!

10:48 AM  
Blogger Derek said...

Exciting news Prof. Berman! If I may ask, are you planning on doing any lectures or other events in Italy? I am currently in the Piedmont region and would love to hear you speak.


10:55 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

In eclipse-related news that could either be about the relative positions of the Earth, Moon and Sun or of the average American's brainpower, a Texas woman seriously asks on Facebook why the pending eclipse can't be moved to a school holiday so everyone can enjoy it:

Relatedly, there's now an app that tells you the best Waffle Houses to patronize during the eclipse:

And lastly--cowardly cop shoots and kills aggressive goat:

3:00 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Shen, Derek-

Sorry, no lectures in NY or Italy, I fear. But I do have an apptment with the Pope, to discuss possible crucifixion of progs.

Meanwhile, for those of you who plan on attending the NY Wafer Summit on Oct. 29, pls send yr messages to, and I'll send you the secret venue.

De Blasio writes that he can't guarantee protection of me upon my arrival at LGA. He is predicting major riots.


3:18 PM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Have a good weekend WAFers, I will be sans computer for a few days and I'm packing my SPF 10,000 sunscreen just in case NK nukes the airbase in Minot, North Dakota. Planning on re-reading "Alas, Babylon" for a few safety tips... If memory serves I should stockpile salt.

4:52 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Walking around downtown I feel like an archaeologist sifting through the pre-rubble, my eyes are truly opened.

Turkey-Buster check out this video, torture has definitely arrived on American shores (probably has been with us all along, just more cameras now:

"It's the tide. It's the dismal tide. It's not the one thing.” -El Paso Sheriff in No Country for Old Men
I've heard Cormac McCarthy compared to Melville wd b interest in what y'all think. Watching The Road recently felt like watching a documentary.
Echo Miles gdbye thoughts we all know we gonna die but can't believe it 'til it gets here.

5:23 PM  
Anonymous WuduFugel said...

All, I had two conversations recently that made me think about the waf trilogy. The first was when I had lunch a short time ago with a few of our secretaries at work, and one, I'll call her Sue, complained about how she could not lose weight, even when she tried giving up soda. I looked across the table at Sue's plate and it was a bunch of saucy, fried chicken wings.

I thought to myself - how you can be so alienated from your body, from the idea of healthy food, that you can't see the problem here? But that seems to be the crux of the issue - we Americans are alienated from everything: Our bodies, the natural world, an understanding of history, even each other (re: television, cell phones, etc.). Has there ever existed a greater culture of alienation than modern America?

The other conversation I had was with my father, who is in the hotel management business. He recently left a job where the owner of the hotel, an Indian, expected him to work from 7:30 am to 7:00 pm, 7 days a week, with 1 day off a month. American culture is bizarre in that it not only brings out the worst in Americans, but in the people who come to live here from other countries as well. I mean, I guess it makes sense that a culture of hustling would attract other hustlers.

5:37 PM  
Blogger k_pgh said...

Dr. Berman,

Happy belated birthday. Hope you had a great day!

This just in on the progs and The Resistance.

The Jimmy Dore Show: McResistance Fully Supporting Trump's Bloated Military Budget

The trouble with Jimmy’s take is – of course – that it’s not just the two major parties. In my experience, regular people go absolutely ballistic if you criticize military spending.

Jerome J & Dr. Berman, thank you for your recommendations of Byung-Chul Han’s “The Transparency Society” and “The Burnout Society.”

5:58 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

americans are very competent in the bestest & most amazingest country!

An elderly Colorado man found dead in a parking garage elevator had pushed the emergency button twice but got no response.

The decomposing body of 82yo Mr. Isaak Komisarchik was found last week after multiple residents of a Denver apartment complex reported a foul odor. Elevator repair workers found the body.

An investigation into the death by Denver Police revealed that the elder gentleman pushed the emergency button twice during an 8-minute span on July 6th but got no response.

Metaphor for america--no response, or unresponsive.

usa! usa!

6:25 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Just in from CNN:

President Donald J. Trump laid down an ultimatum today that if Mayor Bill De Blasio cannot guarantee the protection of Morris Berman, upon his arrival in NYC in late October, he will personally insert a nano-nuke inside De Blasio's anus and detonate it. The president went a step further still:

"Frankly, I will blow the fucking shit outta Manhattan, if need be, to protect my #1 fan and supporter, Dr. Morris Berman, okay."

And now back to our regularly scheduled program.

6:40 PM  
Blogger Alogon said...

Vincent in Auvers said:

>The reason you don't see more women in these fields largely boils down to stereotype threat.
A lot of them do have the aptitude to do well, but hostility from insecure men and pressure to conform from other vacuous women and an anti-intellectual culture at large dissuade most of them from doing so.

Anyone so other-directed as to abandon a serious ambition due to such vague influences as those is pathetic and gets little sympathy from me. More charitably, I doubt that this is the primary explanation.

>That said, it's probably a good thing that women aren't going into these fields.

Jordan Peterson and I prefer to credit more women than men with the common sense to find more fulfilling things in life than a career of 60-80 hour weeks for the sake of far more money than one needs.

11:32 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

The torches have finally come out...are the pitchforks next?

1:03 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Stereotype threat is one of those go-to "explanations" that Americans (especially progs and the "academic" class) like to use when you bring up inconvenient facts about reality, in this case that people of different races and each sex have different aptitudes.

The whole thing is similar to how Americans response with "they hate us for our freedoms, ""Islam is evil" or (my favorite) "terrorists are just bad people" when you point out America's role in creating and supporting global Salafi-Wahhabi terrorism.

2:42 PM  
Blogger ab645471 said...

Japanese salary men:

2:55 PM  
Anonymous John said...

I currently find myself in Portales Norte in Ciudad de Mexico and I dread going back to Amerikkka. Would a sane person return to live there given the societal breakdown? As a person of color, I know the Charlottesville race terror is only going to increase. It's frightening.

6:18 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Alogon- You come at things from a highly mechanistic perspective. Human beings are not unfeeling machines. Ambition and other-directedness are not mutually exclusive. Without other-directedness, ambition leads to pursuits which have no conception of the human good as their aim but rather mere ego gratification and self-enrichment. A young woman who hasn't had her humanity programmed out of her from 20+ years of formal education isn't going to last in an environment where she is called "pathetic" for not being willing to tear down others to advance her own career. This does not mean she does not have aptitude; it means that the way things are set up are not conducive to anything but the narrowest definition of "success." This Spartan notion of cultivating greatness through ruthless competition and the unabashed pursuit of self-interest not only makes for a miserable workplace but also squanders untold amounts of human potential by telling people who would have otherwise contributed something of greater longevity and import to humanity than mind-numbing apps and gadgets that they're rubbish for not kowtowing to the zeitgeist.

The man in that video you linked could be a prototype for this type of deluded personality. You can hear the hatred in his voice as he seethes about women who rationalize about not wanting children in their 30s, calling them "dismal" and having poor educations. This field is dominated by men who think too much and feel too little. They fail with women as a result and then attempt to enact revenge by excluding and denigrating them. Deep down, they are still angry about being rejected by the attractive ones (viz. Elon Musk), but rather than engage in some introspection and become decent human beings, they huddle among themselves and devise these fanciful notions of biological inferiority to make themselves feel better.

8:13 PM  
Anonymous Logan Shirah said...

Peter Adamson’s PHILOSOPHY IN THE ISLAMIC WORLD redraws the map of the history of philosophy in fundamental ways

10:33 PM  
Blogger ccg said...

This piece is unintentionally quite funny, again demonstrating the delusional thinking of progressives:

Not that we need more evidence, I suppose. But as far as I can tell, neither the March of Women in January nor the March for Science in April has had the slightest effect on anything, but you wouldn't know that reading articles like this.

10:36 PM  
Anonymous Ira said...

rereading session, re: Putin's rise, reading the chapters about Russia in the 90s in The Shock Doctrine by Naomia Klein -*shockingly* relevant now

such an important book.

10:52 AM  
Anonymous ideologies-imposed said...

Google like all corps discriminate at will and are heavily dependent on deep state subsidization and collusion - why does the mass media focus on just one type of self-dealing - identity politics noise distraction? Walmart flies out the managerial goons to fire any employee openly talking about labor issues. Women may be treated less fairly but everyone is used and abused because capitalism turns everything into a stupid competition for oligarchich table scraps unless you're part of a plutocratic or oligarchic protected family which the two tier fake justice system reflects. Women are "succeeding" in fake ideologically obedient academia because they tend to be more deferential to authority and therefor ideology instead of quality.

Alogon thanks for the Jordan Peterson thoughts. Everything must be harvested collectivized controlled everyone gets sucked into the sharecropping pyramid - sociopathy is about control. From Grenada to university anti-capitalist ideology - dissent is not allowed. Identity politics and hiring practices are about control or tolerating the intolerance capitalism imposes - manifests. The owned mass media won't cover the systemic injustice that's why plutocrats control the NY Times, W. Post, etc.

1:17 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Amerika has a twerking problem. Their brains being there, all that gyrating has made it into a protein compote.
Where fiction ends and reality begins, or other way 'round. Just the same.

No elegance, no decency, no beauty, no delicacy. Mechanized twerking sex-machine.

Arriving at the Pearly Gates wearing a Pussyhat.
Ticket price starting $14.99. Limited time offer.

Amerika, are you having fun?

1:19 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Pls observe 24-hr rule, thanks.


I mentioned this film b4: "Today's Special." Indian film based in NY. Abt learning to love, and be alive, with food as the medium. Great sound track, but not available as a CD. However, there are Bollywood CD's that have some of the songs, like "Ina Mina Dika." Which cd be Hindi for "Wafers are the best." Also a study in how what is unplanned and accidental is often much better than what you intended to happen. A very Waferian film.


2:18 PM  
Anonymous Zen Citizen said...

Dr. Berman and esteemed Wafers,

Long-time lurker here, troubled by the conflict in Charlottesville, my home town throughout the 70s, and seeking some consolation in increasing the population of registered Wafers by one.

The very subtle, nuanced and -- unfortunately but perhaps inevitably -- infamous Chapter 4 of WAF seems especially relevant now, what with the disrespecting of Southern "heritage" being cited as one key issue underlying the Alt-White marches. I plan to read the chapter again, perhaps in parallel with one of your sources for it, Eugene Genovese's "The Southern Tradition," which I've been reserving for the right occasion.

At the present moment, however, a persistent component of my monkey mind's soundtrack is that great song by The Band, "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down." How sadly odd that a song released in 1968 -- recently the benchmark year of extreme polarization -- could speak of Robert E. Lee without violent demonstrations, or anyone dying because of it.

I guess this is what O&D phenomenon feels like.

2:50 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

I was at an MLB game last night, and right before the national anthem they actually held a moment silence for "the victims of the attack in Charlottesville." They did the same thing last year after the Orlando night club shooting. Dumb as it is to do that after every tragedy, you would think that perhaps it might be a good moment for people to reflect on how sick and fucked up our society is that shit like this keeps happening, but no, Orlando already seems like ancient history to most idiot Americans. Do your duty at be silent when they ask you to, and then let's play ball! We got overpriced beer and hot dogs to sell.

I was also waiting in vain for the media to do some soul searching on the fact that it was likely their insane, wall-to-wall, 24-7 coverage of every terrorist attack that probably put the idea into this sick fucker's mind to use his car as a weapon. That type of attack had pretty much limited to Europe before yesterday. But no, instead they're going insane again with their coverage of this attacks, and in the process turning him into a hero for probably millions of other sorry young fucks so they can start fantasizing about ways they might increase the body count when they get the opportunity.


3:00 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Gigalax- This is nonsense. Intelligence and aptitude are found in people of all races and both genders. I've interacted with people from all different social classes and races and found very smart people who come from all walks of life. Stereotype threat is very much a real thing. I saw it happening in the university, and I'm sure any professor or teacher in American public schools who is honest with him/herself will tell you the same. This tendency to want to stereotype people without taking any sort of historical or sociological perspective as to why certain patterns exist as they do in contemporary society is very much its own form of warped PC: Anyone who delves a little deeper into why things are as they are and doesn't fall prey to simplistic biological explanations is automatically labeled as "PC" or "progressive" in an attempt to shut down debate.

ideologies- I think the reason the tech industry and Google in particular are singled out so heavily in this regard is because they have done all they can to try and make themselves appear as progressive, to sanitize themselves by putting up a facade of being responsible/hip/enlightened capitalists, not those dirty capitalists who blow up mountains in Appalachia or farm Chinese labor to placate America's swelling underclass. With guys like T. Boone Pickens, you know what you're getting. But a Zuckerberg is supposed to be better than that--one of the good guys. "Do no evil" and all that. It's all a mask, of course, and now that it's dangling from the chin, you see them starting to get more of a backlash.

MB- I hope this post doesn't violate the 24-hour rule. I sent my last one around this time yesterday and it didn't show up until this morning.

3:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Fleas are testing positive for the plague in parts of Arizona"

Hope you're not too close MB. Don't worry; I'm sure there will be an app tracking the spread and death count soon. I'm thinking North to escape.

6:00 PM  
Anonymous trout bum said...

Dr. MB and All Fellow Wafers:

When this blog shuts down for Dr. MB's holiday, one item to review is the documentary : Propaganda by Martinov.


"Presented by an anonymous North Korean professor, this anti-Western propaganda film attacks the moral attenuation, political manipulation and hyper-consumerism that characterize the Western world. ... Toward the end of this propaganda piece, the role of North Korea in all of this becomes clear: the country would like to offer itself as headquarters for the mounting fight against consumer slavery and greed worldwide. Propaganda is the world's first propumentary. It was made by Slavko Martinov in Christchurch, New Zealand, with the help of friends who worked in secret for 9 years"--From

6:48 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

" Women are "succeeding" in fake ideologically obedient academia because they tend to be more deferential to authority and therefor ideology instead of quality."

To be fair, most American men are not much better in this regard. But yes, American women do generally "do better" in academia and the corporate world because of the political correctness and authoritarian atmosphere in these institutions. Personally, I find the whole thing funny because the end result is that these institutions end up having psychotic fits (e.g. the recent Evergreen and Google fiascos).

10:23 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

11:54 PM  
Anonymous Wile E Coyote said...

This is a bit old but I saw it and thought of you and the World's Greatest Blog.

Heaven on earth?

9:50 AM  
Anonymous Choe said...

New John Gray piece in New Statesman

11:12 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


In case you hadn't noticed, America doesn't do nuance. This in all areas of life and history, not just the Civil War. There is another word for this: stupidity. And stupidity exacts a price, as we are now seeing in every aspect of American life. This in turn provokes more Manichaean reactions, etc. When I say we're utterly fucked, it's not hyperbole.


My impression is that women do worse in those contexts, overall (esp. in corporations).


3:02 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

The not-so-friendly American workplace...

4:17 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Today I was reminded of the lyric from old Don Henley song: "I saw a Dead Head sticker on a Cadillac," only in this instance it was a Clinton/Kaine sticker on the back of a $50,000 luxury SUV. No doubt the driver is a very proper liberal who was HORRIFIED when that evil Trump withdrew America from the Paris Accords.

There was a great quote yesterday on the Naked Capitalism website in response to the liberal Democratic CONgresscritter who stated that if Trump attacks North Korea it would constitute an impeachable offense. NC pointed out that if Trump actually does do so, we'll have far greater things to worry about than impeachment.

Meanwhile, this goat blood drinking former Libertarian Party senate candidate from Florida who was a "feature marcher" at the Charlottesville racist dipshit rally sounds like a swell guy:

4:44 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

A doctor who refused to prescribe a patient with opioid-based painkillers was murdered in
Ishwaka, Indiana.

Dr. Todd Graham was not through his workday at South Bend Orthopaedics when a new patient came into his office complaining of chronic pain.

He told her opioids were not the appropriate treatment. But she was accompanied by her husband, who cogently insisted on a prescription. The doctor held his ground. The husband grew irate. The argument escalated to the point that Graham pulled out his phone and started recording audio until the couple left. Two hours later, the husband would return, armed and killed the doctor.

usa! usa! All that exceptionalism and greatness makes those healthy and well-adjusted americans use opioids. However to be more "serious"--all those panels, gavel clanking-minutes, vulva hats, committees, meetings, and hearings will certainly help turn america around!

6:19 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

The American workplace is stressful and demanding, according to RAND Survey.

@Vincent in Auvers,

I agree with you completely about tech firms and their progressive facade. Many liberals fall for the act, thinking that because Silicon Valley companies promote socially liberal causes they are "good companies" unlike the "bad companies" in the dirty extraction industries that are associated with red state economies and conservative values.

But if you read about workplace practices in Silicon Valley they are often as nasty as anything you will find anywhere in corporate America. It is too bad that this issue has been dominated by the gender wars narrative because it seems like more of a workers' rights issue to me. That is why I dislike identity politics. It has made traditional labor politics almost impossible. How do you promote solidarity when everyone is more interested in their own identity/tribe?

6:25 PM  
Blogger ccg said...

When I was job hunting (for an academic position) about 20 years ago, job ads would routinely contain the phrase "Women and minorities are especially encouraged to apply." Everyone understood that to be code for "white men need not apply." It was hardly even subtle. Probably the current position notices have that language, too. I haven't looked. But I always thought it interesting that many white male (and white female) professors who vociferously championed preferences were immune to the consequences of these policies. They had tenure. They were safe. I never saw any of them resign their position and re-apply under in the face of the stated preferences. How easy it is for "smart" people to promote policies that never affect them. Hypocrisy is never in short supply in academia. The problems they want address are real enough, but they seek to fix things at the wrong end. They don't much address failing schools in k-12, and almost all of those schools are failing.

My own feeling about these matters is that there should no barriers to prevent anyone from pursuing any field they wish. It should be based on individuals interest and aptitude, not group rights or any such thing. That seems so obvious that it shouldn't need to be said. But the academy as a whole (though hardly everyone in it) has embraced preferences, and now they wonder why there's a backlash.

There's a worthwhile book on this subject from 20 years ago: Backfire:A Reporter Looks at Affirmative Action, by Robert Zelnick.

10:29 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

"My impression is that women do worse in those contexts, overall (esp. in corporations)."

Well, the very tops of the power structures in these institutions (i.e. the education system and corporate America) are mostly composed of men. These men create an "institutional culture" based on fairy tales that deny basic aspects of reality. The general atmosphere is one of authoritarianism mixed with fake optimism and political correctness. Political correctness also serves as a fig leaf to cover up the exploitative practices of the (mostly male) top-level leaderships and the institutions themselves in general. Of course, denial of reality (likely ontological in origin) has always been embedded in American culture but reaches its peak in these institutions. The whole thing is like an organized religion, albeit one extremely soaked in psychosis. These institutions are mentally and spiritually fragile, and inchoate fits of rage eventually break out, followed by inquisition-style hunts for "heretics" (e.g. Evergreen and Google).

Below the very top, women tend to do better than men (in terms of money/status acquisition) because they tend to buy into and reinforce the "institutional culture" more wholeheartedly. As I said before though, American men are not much better in this regard. There are also plenty of men in the middle tiers who willingly act as enforcer drones for those at the very top.

Of course, everyone is ultimately screwed when it comes to mental and spiritual health. After all, denying reality for a long time is bad for the soul.

11:10 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...

For a guy that grew up in a communist country in Eastern Europe, the events in Charlottesville look all too familiar. Right down to the dress code.

Google is the ultimate Fake Search engine. It’s completely useless at this point. Fortunately, while fake companies like Facebook, Google, Twitter, Apple, Microsoft, etc., have been busy preaching to us about progressive “values”, they neglected improving their products, so they’re in serious decline as a result. “Pride cometh before fall.”

The opiate problem is Yuge. The main culprits are BigPharma with their pain killers and their, get this, addictive opiate-based anti-opiate treatments. Best thing that happened recently is that yesterday Merck’s crooked CEO resigned from Trump’s technology council, supposedly in protest over Trump’s handling of Charlottesville. Another billionaire "progressive" for sure. An antitrust action against these scumbags would be nice at this point.


1:32 AM  
Anonymous ideologies-imposed said...

Corp-state capitalism or any corrupt unjust system isn't going to work for creative gifted conscientious hyper-sensitive people. Anyone who is "succeeding" is likely colluding in a mediocre at the expense or reality and people real value ways - even if they're "talented" and "hard working". As a longtime software engineer I found most specialized colleagues cold non fully formed perspectives usually ridiculous like engineers that try to write science fiction that has a snowballs chance at a future realized - dumb competition rewards dumb specialization without self-reflection.

Maybe hierarchies always enable sociopaths to corrupt any system - there should always be a balance such as livable living and wage arrangements let alone caps on wealth accumulation, monopolies, and other pathologies. Why not try to feed the hungry (where sustainable), heal the sick, house the poor, bury the dead - not privatize and hyper-individualize everything.

Alice Friedemann shows great ability at systemic analysis and common sense for the truth - that the problems are over-whelming, that civilization depends on diesel engines and long complex supply chains which are running out of oil, instead the pork-barrel lunacy of solar panels and electric cars - Musk tastelessness - hard to like that guy.

Women tend not to like chess or know good music or art due to extroversion. They're in general hard-wired for security for babies and mitigating relationships. They usually categorize value in binary emotionally rationalized overly in the present ways. They rarely complain if their husbands make money criminally or tastelessly or divorce laws.

People aren't designed to handle cognitive dissonance. The corp state exploits natural weaknesses in men and women to maximize its-self. Thanks for your wafer thoughts.

1:58 AM  
Anonymous JRS said...

Hi Dr Berman,

I've worked in both academia and corporate environments and honestly I find them both soul sucking places for anyone who works there. But then again, why wouldn't they be? They are there to support a vampiric nation full of soul suckers. Now the soulless corpses are marching in the streets whether in Charlottesville or wearing pink pussy hats or with Antifa or out voting for the two soulless candidates from either soulless political party. We are a nation of zombies all falling in line with exactly what these corporations want. It's right there under our noses and no one notices it. We are so easily manipulated.


2:30 AM  
Anonymous Abigail said...
“The death of reading is threatening the soul”

7:50 AM  
Anonymous D Hutto Jr said...

let's see how fast Tom Price is to announce existential emptiness as a US health emergency

7:59 AM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Put up a TV antenna yesterday, always got NFL for free through Verizon but changed carriers. (won't get into why I wanna watch Nat'l Fascist League, fuck it I'm conditioned I'm thinkin' but I ain't payin') It's been a looong time since I last waded into the cesspool of commercial tv. Oh my fuckin god who watches this shit? Couldnt believe the banality and just creepiness of it all. I submit Entertainment Tonight as best all around evidence of imminent panic and demise. They must have shown the video of Tom Cruise smashing his head into a building after a failed stunt attempt 30 times in 10 minutes super slo-mo, reverse angle, overhead, everything.
Be afraid America, be very, very, afraid.

10:27 AM  
Anonymous Suburban Warfare said...

How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon

ISBN-13: 978-1476777863, I

11:00 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Appreciated yr message but cdn't post it; we have a half-page-max rule on this blog. Pls compress down to that, and re-send. Thank you.


Always, always, capitalize Wafer. 2nd, women certainly do know gd music and art; yr gender stereotyping is a caricature, quite beneath you. Also check out a film called "Queen to Play."


I think yr wrong abt middle levels as well.

Wafers: True story:

Last Sat I was walking down the st. in Mexico City and this guy (Mexican), early 30s, is coming toward me. Very well built, wearing a T-shirt that says, in English (block capitals),


I stop him, point to the T-shirt, tell him I agree completely. He smiles, nods.

Is an anti-techno-buffoon movement in the making?


11:11 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

It appears that Trumpo's ultra-right supporters are gearing up for armed conflict, as the media wonders aloud if Trumpo is an actual fascist or not. Hair splitting IMO, but the little shits in the streets on Saturday are *definitely* fascists. Make no mistake about it! As such, my # 1 recommendation to Wafers worldwide is to trust the most effective antidote to fascism: the Kalashnikov AK-47. There's no other way to resist the hateful hordes spilling outta the pit.


11:25 AM  
Blogger took_the_red_pill said...

August 14 New Yorker article:

Is America Headed For a New Kind of Civil War?

"A day after the brawling and racist brutality and deaths in Virginia, Governor Terry McAuliffe asked, “How did we get to this place?”...the Southern Poverty Law Center...documents more than nine hundred active (and growing) hate groups in the United States...

"Earlier this year, I began a conversation with Keith Mines about America’s turmoil. Mines has spent his career—in the U.S. Army Special Forces, the United Nations, and now the State Department—navigating civil wars in other countries...He returned to Washington after sixteen years to find conditions that he had seen nurture conflict abroad now visible at home. It haunts him."

I know that Chris Hedges is easy to mock due to his frequent jeremiads in Truthdig and TomDispatch. However, it should be noted that Hedges had a similar experience as Mr. Mines: he returned from a decade abroad as a Middle East correspondent to find a United States radically changed for the worse.

3:07 PM  
Anonymous Nomi News said...

this announceneby from Nomi Prins:

'Just handed in final revisions for my next book Collusion.
Manuscript clocked in at 496 pages,1300 footnotes! @nationbooks'

4:05 PM  
Anonymous Vaughn said...

Off the shelf drones with street legal guns, probably the best idea

5:08 PM  
Blogger Polk said...

For further proof of the astounding ignorance and incompetence of many Americans, one only need tune in to the local news programs aired across this great land. I wonder if the anchors have even graduated from middle school. They seem to be reading whatever is on the teleprompter for the first time, mispronouncing place names, tripping over unfamiliar words (anything with more than 2 syllables). Children reading what other children have written for them. And if I had a dollar for every use of the term "if you will" by local "meteorologists" I could move to anyplace in the world with a small fortune in foreign bonds.

Help, I'm siiiiiinking.

5:25 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Trump reversed his opinion AGAIN...for the second time...

He's emboldened the Alt Right, White Supremacists, and Neo Nazis, and I predict all hell is going to break loose by the end of the year...

7:08 PM  
Blogger comrade simba said...


While I agree with the gist of the statement I'm not that impressed with having that sort of language emblazoned on a shirt worn amongst the general public. If you're gonna claim the high ground be classy about it, right? However, perhaps the subtext is vitriol directed at asshat americans fucking up traditional Mexican culture. In that case he gets a pass... I just hope no niño's were harmed in the making of the statement.

8:09 PM  
Anonymous Schlomo said...

The more I hear from Dr Cornel West, the more I realize he is probably one of the most prominent WAFer voices who's granted access to Mainstream platforms. Many common themes from MB's DAA, but he's probably different in that he has some optimism still. He may not be aware of MB's works but his emphasis on a moral and spiritual and public life decline in America sounds familiar.

It's going to be an extremely dark and lonely Sep-Oct not having this blog around.

8:55 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B:

News from Texas- a "sneak peek" at a new $70 million high school football stadium-

Priorities, priorities....

10:04 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

More american hustling!

For 40yrs, Elvis Presley fans have made a "pilgrimage" to his grave at the Graceland mansion during the annual commemoration his death w/o any cost/admission fee/surcharge/etc...

Now this yr, it's going to cost them $28.75.

The $28.75 wristband also provides access to a new $45 million entertainment complex at the Memphis tourist attraction (of course, to huck more dreck and promote the business) and to help maintain state and Fed "security" during the event says a Elvis Presley Enterprises, LLC spokesman.

Love me tender Wafers!

10:21 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Paul Craig Roberts, who I believe is a Virginian, is in this tirade of an article bemoaning the American story-line accepted by so many. He makes a number of very true points about the Civil War, slavery and Lincoln's reason for issuing the Emancipation Proclamation - perhaps slave revolts (which didn't happen) in Southern states would have pulled Confederate soldiers off the front lines could very well have been his intent. Usually the coming of mechanized agriculture is usually offered as a reason for eventual ending of slavery if the Civil War hadn't - certainly soil fertility could very well have done it as well; the closing of the frontier at the end of 1800s could have as well. He refers to the US even before the Civil War as an empire - he is right about this - but a business empire, not necessarily an empire like the British had. Well, I think this is well worth reading.

11:02 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...


I also think universities in America are complete scams. All are milking the student loan system, and the “elite” ones are also milking research funds to do useless studies. I worked at 5 universities, and I still tech at a few – they are all scams.

And the quality of students today is terrible, especially at the schools that go overboard with affirmative action. Some graduate schools and medical schools sometimes have a discrepancy of a whole undergraduate GPA point between white/Asian and African-American students.


3:25 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike R-

Hound dogs, all of them.

jj, Miles, pill-

We are watching the country commit suicide. Armageddon, ecpyrosis. How long b4 we completely implode?


10:10 AM  
Anonymous Ignatz_De_Mouse said...

Dear Dr. Berman -

I don't understand why my comment was removed from your blog since there was nothing in the least offensive about it (unless you or your readers happen to idolize Ray Kroc which I highly doubt) unless it was the thoughtless use of the term "Aryan" by which I only meant the ancient Proto-Indo-European language speakers of the Black Sea region. I fear I've gotten into the bad habit of utilizing this charged term from reading far too many texts on language published prior to 1930 and, as something of a Sanskritist, seeing the term "Indo-Aryan" still commonly used to describe the branch of Indo-European languages Sanskrit derives from - so I do apologize if that was what led to its removal. As someone of Jewish/Slavic/Semitic roots, I certainly implied nothing verging on the Nazis' racially-motivated corruption of the term.

10:12 AM  
Blogger Gigalax said...


I like how PCR points out Lincoln's extreme racism in this article. The myth that Lincoln was friendly to blacks really needs to die.

There is also more to the story of slavery as Mark Ames points out in his book "Going Postal." Slavery was really more like today's modern day corporate slavery. The main reason that the South had so few slave rebellions is because, like today's corporate workers, the slaves back then bought into the myths put out by their masters. Thus, the view of slavery put out by pro-North historians, that it was a very physically abusive institution, is a complete myth.

10:40 AM  
Anonymous Alegra said...

A beautiful tribute to the ideals of Gandhi, penned by his grandson.
Reading some of these replies. It is as if any imperfection in Gandhi's character makes his achievements null. No one is perfect. Even great World Historical Figures

10:53 AM  
Anonymous JRS said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers,

Here is an excellent report of the protest in Charlottesville by a very small crew of young journalists. This is how journalism should be, IMO. I don't think you will ever see corporate media do this kind reporting on these protests, let alone much else.

It seems like the protest wasn't that big. I heard there were only 500 people that showed up. Trump did embolden them though, but I don't think their numbers have gone up much. And I think they are going to get more violent, I have no doubt about that. I could be wrong on their numbers if anyone has information on that to the contrary.

Much love to all,


11:27 AM  
Anonymous Mike Kelly said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

How long b4 we completely implode? Good question Dr. Berman. I belong to to the school of Waferism that says it's going to take a long time. Granted, Trump and his supporters are pushing things along very nicely, but never underestimate the power of aggravated douchebaggery to self-preserve. The best guess I've read so far is explained in Lionel Shriver's the Mandibles. It's been a while since I read the book, but as I recall she guesses that some really bad financial conditions start happening around 2024. Then the government figures out all sorts of ways to mask the bad news, and the party goes on until about 2029. The years after that are when we see the collapse, and maybe around 2049 is when it all ends. Shriver claims she consulted with all sorts of economists and other professionals to lend credibility to her fiction, and I believe her. If there are any Wafers out there who still haven't read the book, I would recommend that you do so. It is a glimpse of the bad stuff to come and some good hints on how to survive. It's not too early to plan your escape (preferred) or work on your NMI skills.

11:35 AM  
Anonymous Golf Pro said...

Dr. Berman,

What is your wise counsel on the current fad for pulling down Civil War monuments?

It seems a strange point in time to be demolishing memorials to Robert E. Lee and his ilk.

2:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Big mistake, all of this. As you might surmise from WAF ch. 4. It will only make things worse.


Dunno what to tell you. I never received a post from you, and I certainly never deleted one.


2:57 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Julie--there might have only been 500 or so white hooded scumbags marching in that rally, but they are likely the shark's fin of Trump's hardcore support--the ones who are willing and dumb enough to march around in public looking like that. The rest, who no doubt include the vast majority of the 10% or American households who own 90% of the guns, may not be quite so openly hostile to minorities, but will be up in arms if there is any attempt to remove their hero. They are why the politicos are no doubt scared to death that open insurrection will break out and haven't done anything serious about impeachment other than occasionally blabber about it.

I think there's a good chance that we're heading for a national nervous breakdown this fall, which is also why I'm keeping my eye on what I consider currently to be the greatest possible threat to the whole system--a debt ceiling breach. Estimates are that the USG will be completely out of money by the end of September if the ceiling isn't raised, and I think it was David Stockman who estimated that about 99% of the population has no clue about what any of it means. As for Trump, he might be so furious with the rest of Washington by then that he might veto a compromise bill to raise the ceiling just to bring everybody else down with him.

5:20 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...


Oddly enuf, Robert E. Lee was opposed to building Confederate monuments, and worried about preserving the so-called passions of the past. Lee stressed his belief that the nation should move past the war, and thought the countries that erased visible signs of civil war recovered quicker. Lee wrote:

"I think it wiser not to keep open the sores of war but to follow the examples of those nations who endeavored to obliterate the marks of civil strife, to commit to oblivion the feelings engendered."

In any event, the modern mind, to a large extent, cannot comprehend the degree to which the South poured itself into the fight of the Civil War. If you extrapolated Southern loses into our current American population, the war would have cost the lives of a staggering 9 million men, with at least an equivalent number injured. Large sections of the South simply devastated -- crops burned, homes burned, livestock killed or scattered by the Federals. Entire cities lay in ruins. It's time we use history to understand our nation in *all* its complexity, but very few are interested in this (sigh).

Miles Beauregard Dewey Deli, Jr.

8:43 PM  
Anonymous Megan said...


Yes, Cornel West is way too optimistic to be a true WAFer. For as insightful as he is sometimes, you have to wonder if he really gets it. Because how can you really get it if you think that "people are waking up" and "coming together", and that "light will win out over darkness", etc. etc. Yet this is the kind of stuff he always ends up saying. Plus, W.A.F. stands for "Why America Failed". Not, "Why America almost failed, but was ultimately saved by the essential goodness of the silent majority who took back their country, even as it teetered on the abyss." And even if Cornel was right, that would make a terrible acronym!


I hear you on Big Pharma! Which reminds me. Robert Whitaker has an excellent book called "Anatomy Of An Epidemic" which shows that most psych meds. are far more dangerous than opiates.

12:50 AM  
Anonymous Transatlantic said...

Julie -- Vice like all things hipster has a veneer of authenticity, but is ultimately hollow. The only reason Vice seems interesting is because the rest of our corporate media have become a modern day version of Pravda carrying out orders from status quo politicians at the DNC and RNC and offering virtually nothing on balance.

For all of his faults, I see no evidence that Trump is racist. Head on over to Wikileaks for smoking gun proof that the Hitler/racism trope along with the Russia conspiracy nonsense was conceived by Robby Mook and John Podesta in the wake of Cankles' loss. It's literally in black and white. It's hard watching Wafers get sucked into this. We should be above it.

4:01 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


This from Ernest Becker, "The Denial of Death":

"Just as there are useless self-sacrifices in unjust wars, so too is there an ignoble heroics of whole societies: it can be the viciously destructive heroics of Hitler's Germany or the plain debasing and silly heroics of the acquisition and display of consumer goods, the piling up of money and privileges that now characterizes whole ways of life."

Philistinism works, said Kierkegaard, by "tranquilizing itself with the trivial." Freud referred to the "pathology of whole cultural communities."


11:47 AM  
Anonymous Golf Pro said...

Or as Nietzsche put it:

"Madness is rare in individuals - but in groups, parties, nations, and ages it is the rule."

1:27 PM  
Anonymous Sorrowful said...

Dear MB and WAFers:

Recently re-read WAF for the second time and was struck by the relevance of Chapter 4 to our situation today. The "clash of civilizations" argument makes much more sense to me in light of America's current condition. A recent visit to the heartlands of Kansas and Iowa sobered me completely with regard to America's ability to recover from decline and to the radically separate cultures that exist between urban and rural populations. RE this article from the Guardian today:

The man quoted at the end of the article echoes the sentiments of my brother-in-law, who has lived in Kansas all his life. I realized while I was there that common ground ala Cornel West, bless his heart, is increasingly difficult to find.

Also this from Emma Brockes Guardian column today:

"In a New Yorker article this week the chances of another civil war breaking out in the US in the next 10 to 15 years were put anywhere from 5% and 95%, with at least one credible analyst coming in at 60%. That number was from Keith Mines, a national security expert with experience in multiple foreign war zones, who clarified that by “civil war” he referred not to traditional warfare, but to sporadic outbursts of “large-scale” violence and an increase in the kind of attacks by rightwing terror groups that have accounted for 74% of domestic terror incidents in the US over the past 10 years. (Percentage of deaths ascribed to leftwing terrorists in that period: 2%)."

Seeing more references to civil war in my perusal of the news. Sad, but, I fear, inevitable.

2:16 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Well, the Civil War never really ended, as it turns out. Demos like Charlotte make this very clear.

Regarding WAF ch. 4, given the mental capacity of Americans, there was no way that chapter wd not be misunderstood and vilified, despite the fact that I made it clear that I was glad the Union won the war. American thought in general, but esp. on the subject of race, is Manichaean and self-righteous. Gene Genovese said that there was no way an American cd say anything positive abt the antebellum South without being called a racist and an advocate of slavery; reaction to ch. 4 shows he was rt. The reaction was to beat one's chest, jump up and down, and feel "good" abt oneself. Things such as paradox and nuance simply don't exist for Americans.

So that will be the reaction to the following remarks, except on the part of you who actually read and understood ch. 4: roughly .0000001% of the population.

1. Trump is correct when he says the press is slandering him. They did it during the campaign, and it continues today. In terms of what is real, the NYT et al. chooses to keep the irrelevant at the forefront, and identity politics is certainly irrelevant in terms of what is happening to the US, namely that it's going down the toilet. Another red herring is Russia hacking our election or whatever. How many elections, and govts, have we interfered with? It's quite a list, and it includes the Russian election of 1996. Americans are stupid, so they get exercised over crap, while the factors of our decline, outlined by me in the Twilight bk, are completely ignored.

2. Trump is also correct abt the nationwide attempt to pull down Confederate statues and the Dixie flag. Of course, I don't have a lot in common with white supremacists shouting neo-Nazi slogans against blacks and Jews, but I am also not in the camp of those who would whitewash our history. Rewriting Twain so that the word "nigger" never appears, or removing a statue of Lee--this is quite destructive. Lee, for example, was a lot more than just a slaveowner, and the antebellum South was a lot more than just a slave society. The culture clash was that it was a leisurely, elegant, nonhustling society, and rightly rejected the value system of the North. The tragedy, and the paradox, is that this society was made possible by a slave economy and the oppression of 4 million people.

3. The North owes the South an apology, not merely for the socioeconomic destruction of the South, but also the symbolic destruction: ignoring the richness of its legacy and narrowing everything down to "slavery." Neither of these things were necessary, and the North also needs to acknowledge that its hustling culture has been its own type of depravity, as Gene Genovese characterized it. This apology, and admission of its own awful character, will of course not be forthcoming; which is to say that the Civil War will continue, and that we shall see many more Charlottes in the future. Taking down flags and statues will only inflame Southerners more, leading to more violence, leading to more taking down of flags and statues, etc. etc. I can't emphasize it enuf: Americans are not very bright.

4. Still, the flag is a sensitive issue. It means very different things to black people than to Southern whites. The former see only oppression and slave history--which is understandable. The latter see a whole way of life, of which--excepting slavery--they can be justly proud. How to reconcile this difference, I have no idea. But in any case, we won't even try.

5. One reviewer of WAF angrily wrote that my attempt to put the slave issue aside, just for a moment, so that we might be able to see the antebellum South in larger terms, was like saying we shd consider Germany without the Holocaust. Well, mein Freund: of course we should! Goethe and Beethoven don't count, you stupid shmuck? All of Germany history is to get funneled down into Auschwitz? Where are your brains?

(continued below)

3:09 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

(continued from above)

6. In that regard, it is instructive that while Germany has banned the Swastika (which had abs. nothing positive attached to it), it has preserved Fascist monuments, and has turned former conc. camps into museums. Can one imagine tearing down the Reichstag? The idea is to learn from the past, not try to bury or whitewash it. But then, in my experience, many Germans are intelligent.

7. Finally, in the face of the vilification and opprobrium of Trump by the NYT et al., he has stuck to his guns. I admire this. The neo-Nazi demo was wrong, but so was the attempt to obliterate Robt E. Lee--which is what provoked the demo in the 1st place.

As most of you know, I finally had to impose a moratorium on discussions of ch. 4 and the Civil War because it was all pointless: there was no getting thru to enraged idiots who believe emoting is thinking, and who had no more understanding of the nature of paradox than they did of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. So I don't really want to dredge up past arguments, because I can't imagine that my critics got any smarter in the interim. But in the light of Charlotte, I felt I shd say something abt it.

And of course, distraction from our real problems with Russian hacking, identity politics, Trump's personality and so on--all this can only hasten our decline. One hasta only read the editorials in the Wash Post et al. to realize that in the US, even the smart people are dumb. The fix is in; there is no "source" that can rescue a dying nation filled with deluded people pursuing absurd politics.


3:10 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Can't reconstruct how I came upon this article, but offer it to my fellow Wafers for whatever amusement it may afford.

4:21 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Bill Hicks- Interesting parallel between the attack in Charlottesville and events in Europe. I think these groups have more in common than their methods, however. Much like ISIS, the neo-Nazis are largely comprised of ignorant young men with no identity or sense or purpose in life who fill that vacuum with toxic ideology. At least the Muslims have some legitimate grievances underpinning their vile attacks, their countries and families having been destroyed by the West. What are these white guys so angry about? With a little bit of effort, they can get educated and carve out a nice little niche for themselves in the society, start families, and live relatively comfortable lives. They aren't being murdered by cops or denied a livelihood because of the color of their skin. The arrogance, sense of entitlement, and rage are baffling. I'm reminded of a scene in Richard Linklater's "SubUrbia" where the Indian owner of a convenience store tells a bunch of losers who hang out in his parking lot that they have everything and they're just throwing it away.

North or South, Americans are very deluded people. I think MB mentions in one of his books the differences in countenance, focusing in particular on the eyes, between Americans and rural peoples from other parts of the world and how the visages of these rural people demonstrate calm, contentment, and authenticity. My own family comes from the South (farmers), but I've never understood how anyone can invest such a large part of his identity in something as fatuous as statues or white pride. Why don't these people do something meaningful with their lives? Open your minds, let the hate dissipate, live and let live. Humans are humans, but there don't seem to be very many of them in America today. Hustlers, bumpkins, and victims all clawing at each other's throats for a scrap of dignity. It's real simple: Don't be a self-centered asshole. Kindness begets kindness; hatred begets hate.

Don't know if there are any Depeche Mode fans here, but there is a song on their latest album that's pretty Waferish: Going Backwards

4:26 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B:

I was struck last weekend by a video of Gov. McAuliffe of Virginia extolling the virtues of Thomas Jefferson, and praising people for "defending" Jefferson's statue in Charlottesville. Trump's comments this week observing that both Jefferson and George Washington owned slaves really stirred the pot! I think this is the best article of the week on the subject, having read through it twice-

4:52 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

In what can only be read as a very bad sign of the times, Naked Capitalism was forced to shut down its comments section today because of how ugly the rhetoric had become in the wake of C-ville. While it would be a stretch to call NC a hotbed of Waferism, their readership has always constituted one of the few sane little corners of the Internet. Just this past weekend Peter Van Buren also announced he was giving up blogging for the very same reason. So how is that whole "the Internet will bring us all closer together" idea working out these days? It's yet another example of America's idiotic blind faith in technological progress and how we stupidly blunder forward with every shiny new toy without ever once stopping to consider the long term ill effects on what was already a horribly immature society.

Nice to see, however, that the blogger Moon Over Alabama wrote a post yesterday echoing what MB said about the damaging effects of tearing down history by removing the confederate statues, and comparing it to how the Iraqis reacted when the U.S. topped Saddam's statue in 2003: "While many Trump voters will dislike statues of Robert Lee, they will understand (and) dislike the campaign to take them down even more." The progs are smirking at their success in now seeing many of the remaining monuments razed, without once considering that the coming backlash is likely to be epic:

5:28 PM  
Anonymous Max said...

Reading a very interesting bio book of Ezra Pound. He had such a turbulent but fascinating political life I didn't know much about.

Feeling Eliot was so right to dedicateThe Wasteland to him w/ "Ezra Pound, il miglior fabbro."

6:55 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

MB, Wafers-

Could it not be argued, however, that this is no longer just about Confederate statues? In other words, if the rally was really about preserving Confederate statues or Southern heritage, haven't its participants done a major disservice to their cause by inviting and marching openly with neo-Nazis in streets of Charlottesville? As for Trump, it seems he can't even manage a simple, believable denunciation of racism and bigotry. He equates people protesting against racism and bigotry w/the racists and bigots themselves. I don't think it's possible to waffle, sugarcoat, or put a political spin on this w/o coming across as a Nazi sympathizer.


7:34 PM  
Anonymous troutbum said...

Dr. MB and all fellow Wafers,

Today, I urge the study of Dr. Peter Turchin who has developed a theory of the dynamics of inequality and how therefore societies fail.
I nominate him as a fellow traveler. Just one quote :
"Three years ago I published a short article in the science journal Nature. I pointed out that several leading indicators of political instability look set to peak around 2020. In other words, we are rapidly approaching a historical cusp, at which the US will be particularly vulnerable to violent upheaval."
Start here : and here

7:50 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...


Last time I lived in the South, 17 years ago, it was still a leisurely, elegant, polite, nonhustling society that rejected the values of the North. I think the left’s taking down these monuments is synonymous to Hitler burning books. What will follow? We hear about the evils of the right, when in fact, the left (Mao, Stalin, etc) murdered hundreds of millions. Hitler was a “nationalist socialist”, so he too was of the left. In my opinion, the left is actively creating conflict in order to collapse society and hasten in that Dark Age you wrote about, under what it hopes to become a perpetual neo-feudal system. The fact that all these “progressive” billionaires are on board with the left should be a dead give away. Am I wrong about this?


I read Robert Whitaker’s book, "Anatomy Of An Epidemic". It’s much worse now. I am a psychologist, and half of my clients are opiate addicts, mostly legal pain killers. Opiates are very addictive, but, as you write, things like Xanax, Ambien, antipsychotics, SSRIs are far worse. Most mass shooters in recent decades were on SSRIs. But you won’t hear that on Fake News because most of their advertising is from Pharma. Recently Trump made some comments about this. I suspect this is the reason Merck's CEO quit Trump's advisory panel -- something is coming.

Bill Hicks,

Naked Capitalism used to be interesting. Now it’s terrible. The site is ran by Susan Weber (a.k.a. Yves Smith), a narcissist who admitted to me that she worked for George Soros. Last year, before the election. I asked her to disavow Soros, but she refused and blocked my access to her site. Fake news.


9:02 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

"Estimates are that the USG will be completely out of money by the end of September if the ceiling isn't raised"

America can always print more money as long as the Petrodollar system is in place around the world. Once the Petrodollar collapses, which will probably be quite soon, then America will finally have to face the consequences of its reckless financial behavior.

Also, I think the "antifas" should change their name to something more accurate, perhaps "politically correct fascists." These guys were okay with Clinton, Bush Jr. and Obama handing America off to a fascist corporate aristocracy and only seem to get mad at people who are not politically correct. Calling themselves "antifas" is a complete lie and a joke.

9:20 PM  
Anonymous Teller said...

Nietzsche isn't pietzsche!

Though not a racist or nationalist, he inspired Nazis, fascists, now the alt-right. Greeaaaat

9:40 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

The DARK AGES rises again!

11:42 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@Bill Hicks,

I used to believe the hype about the Internet improving discourse and making us better informed but I don’t believe that anymore. There is so much information on the Internet that people can suffer from information overload and absorb false or misleading information.

In other news, suicide rates for American teenagers have been steadily climbing since 2007. The suicide rate for teen girls doubled between 2007 and 2015 and is now at its highest point in 40 years. The suicide rate for boys increased by 30 percent in the same time period.

1:04 AM  
Anonymous Derek said...

I have to admit that I'm torn over the question of taking down statues. I'm not really sure that the comparison to Germany makes sense, considering that the majority of their society views the things from WWII, like Auschwitz, as something to learn from. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this isn't how the statue of, say, Robert E. Lee is viewed. It's another question as to what the statue represents, and I understand the idea that it represent a lot more than just "slavery." However, as Prof. Berman mentioned about the Confederate flag, when a large portion of the population see a symbol as something representing oppression, isn't this a problem? As we all know, language and symbols change and evolve over time in relation to the population that uses them. There was a time in history, before WWII, when the swastika was a symbol of good fortune. Then the Nazis changed its meaning, this meaning become generally understood by society at large, and the symbol is now unacceptable. Perhaps this is similar to the process that the Confederate flag and the statues are undergoing. Anyways, I appreciate the debate on the subject.

3:33 AM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

WAFER Vincent--most americans (99.7%) are dead from the neck up--spiritually, mentally, and ontologically. They're dead. Their only motive in life is to hustle; e.g., get their piece of the mouth, a casa grande, 3 cars in the garage, and expand endlessly before dying. That's the american "narrative."

Asking them to wake up, 'live/let live,' or do something "meaningful" was akin to asking my dog to talk. americans truly "believe" they're doing something meaningful and anything to the contrary puts them into an intense rage as discussed on this site. Legends in their own fun house circus -mirror minds.

2 options--NMI, or much preferred emigrate.

11:12 AM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

- Megan I thought I'd respond to your comment on psych drugs. I've thought allot about this myself both as one who takes them and have worked at a State facility treating the sickest people in Colorado (murder, rape, pedophiles, all the good folk.) Like MB says nuance is the thing. Personally I was on lithium, low dose even, got my eye exam they told me my optic nerves were swollen, MRI, 3 spinal taps and brain angiogram later it was discovered the drug had a side effect know as pseudo tumor cerebri or increased spinal fluid in cranium. Occurs 1 in 100,000. I'm not a fan.
I did observe however very sick people respond well to meds, some very, very sick. But confounding my observation is the fact all of these people have horrific histories, being in hospital was a major step up so was it the meds or was it being in a safe evironment where someone finally heard them? American life is lonely but for peeps with MI this increases by a factor of x depending on where you are, childhood, and severity of symptoms. Throwing drugs and money @ people is a very cynical way for the 1% to make money. Treatment plans do not factor in a person's hopes, dreams, and aspirations really its about finding some place in the hustling world usually bottom of the barrel (90% of people with serious MI are unemployed) those able to "recover" the most shit being declared the winners. Some ppl might just b constitutionally unfit for hustling, most end up in jail or prison which leads me to conclude the overall message is "take our meds, here's your pension, now leave us the fuck alone and if you can't remaim docile we have other options" NAMI (assoc for MI peeps) has a guiding principle "mental illnesses are medical illnesses that MAY have environmental triggers" to which I call bullshit! The truth lies somewhere out there in the nuanced weeds but really who gives a fuck?
Article in todays paper, yeah this'll work:

12:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


One thing those white guys are probably angry abt is the removal of a statue representing their heritage, erasing it and consigning it to oblivion. I think I'd be a tad annoyed myself. Keep in mind that the Southern heritage involves a whole lot more than slavery.


Jefferson owned 150 slaves, and did not free them when he died. His will just passed them on to his descendants. Does this negate the Declaration? T.S. Eliot was the greatest poet in the English language, with the possible exception of Shakespeare. Also, like Shakespeare, an antisemite. Shd I stop reading them? People, and history, are complex.


Yeah, it may be a problem without a solution, I dunno. But I'm quite sure that taking down statues and banning the Confed flag can only create more backlash, because you are forcing an entire culture to deny itself, deny what it contained that was worthwhile. Shoving stuff down people's throats ain't an effective approach, by and large.


Sure, if you quote him outta context.


These various strands are very different things, but I agree with you that in practice they get tangled up together.


1:32 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:


Nietzsche would have despised the alt+right, just as he'd have despised Nazis. Incidentally, he once referred to Germans as "cattle," because of their herd mentality and tendency to follow whoever would lead them.

I appreciate the Wafer stance on the great monuments debate. While I loathe the white power yahoos, I nevertheless don't approve of tearing down statues. One doesn't change history by destroying historical artifacts

The progs should consider that the Vietnam war was racist. With that in mind, should the monument to the US soldiers killed in that war be removed?

1:47 PM  
Anonymous SrVidaBuena said...

But what would Lorenzo Riggins say?

1:55 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

It's clear to me that slavery was the first American hustle. There's no reason to revere slave-holders. All of their monuments should be taken down and placed in museums, where their history can be seen in an educational context. These symbols should be replaced by monuments to the victims, in this case the people who were enslaved & lynched. This would acknowledge history in a healthy way, and speak to the victims' suffering and the willingness of society to make moral decisions and admit its mistakes. As long as these statues stand in public places for the glorification of evil and the intimidation of the victims' descendants, we will never be able to know good. We will be stuck in a civil war.

And as far as the idea that the north should apologize, it's true that they owe the blacks who were victims of this society a heartfelt apology for failing to protect them and enforce a strong reconstruction and dismantlement of the American caste system. Instead of doing this, the north transformed slavery from a chattel system into a prison system, and they should right this wrong as well by closing the loophole in the 13th amendment.

2:04 PM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Re: Statues. Problem is the statue that started all this hubbub was installed in friggin' 1924, more of a Jim Crow and rise of the KKK monument. The confederate flag really didn't become popular until the civil rights era. They have nothing to do with "southern heritage", nor are they really historical ... but I'm a yankee so what do I know.

One of the better essays about it:

But, to be honest my fellow WAFers, I really couldn't give a sh!t whether they stay or go.

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Speaking of Nietzsche, there is a notion in his On the Use and Abuse of History that sums up my views on these statues. It is the notion of antiquarian history, which he describes thus:

"Antiquarian history knows only how to preserve life, not how to generate it. Therefore, it always undervalues what is coming into being, because it has no instinctive feel for it...antiquarian history hinders the powerful willing of new things; it cripples the active man, who always, as an active person, will and must set aside reverence to some extent."

There may be a rich heritage the South is attempting to preserve with these statues, but, as noted, it is inextricably bound up with a moral abomination. It would be nice to think that these statues serve as an inoculum against a repeat of those dark aspects of the South's past, but the resurgence of racism, bigotry and hatred we have seen over the past year suggests that they have failed in this respect. I approach the matter more from the perspective of the black citizens of these states: What they see in these statues isn't the genteel Southern gentleman but rather their grandfather, face bloodied, dangling from the end of a rope.

The country will likely be done long before there is ever any resolution of the sordid details of its origins, but I think their removal is for the best. The immediate backlash may be intense, but over time the whole thing will be seen as rather silly. Generation through destruction, as Nietzsche says. I suppose we will have to agree to disagree, MB. I don't think you're a racist, by the way; I just don't see much worth preserving there. I long ago left my Southern roots behind and became a citizen of the world, which is a lot more interesting.

3:39 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Mark me up as another one who is opposed to the tearing down of the old statues commemorating Southern heroes in the War Between the States. I'd rather they put up explanatory markers, or relocate the statues to national battlefields, or put them inside history museums, anything other than just tearing them down, vandalizing their bases and forgetting the memory of the whole thing.

Here's a good article on the USA descending into utter madness. Morris, you're right, America is finished!

And Steve Bannon has left the White House. Looks like the recent contretemps in Charlottesville was just too much for certain circles in the Trump White House, so he's now on the outs!

3:46 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Gig -- it is not that the U.S. government is incapable of continuing to borrow, it is that at the moment it is legally forbidden to do so, and will run out of cash reserves around the end of September. OMB has already issued guidance prioritizing which bills will be paid if that happens, which gives you an idea of how seriously they are taking the possibility. The last time the ceiling was raised back in 2014, it took an enormous political compromise between Obama and John Boehner that cost the latter his Speakership of the House, which Paul Ryan will be keeping very much in mind.

It doesn't take a political scientist to see that things are even more unstable and fucked up in Washington now than they were in 2014. The Freedom Caucus douchebags are likely to stand firm on ANY debt ceiling increase, meaning that Ryan will need at least some if not a majority of Democrats to cave and join him. Even if they are somehow able to get a bill passed through both houses, Trump will need to be persuaded to sign it, which if he's feeling petulant as the media keeps baying for his hide he might refuse. No one knows for sure what will happen if America defaults, but a major market crash seems and almost certainty.

Bingo - How is Naked Capitalism fake news? Give me one concrete example. Smearing them by saying the editor used to work for George Soros makes you look like the biased one.

7:03 PM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

Here is your news report from Cascadia:

In more of “death by a thousand cuts,” statue removalism is sweeping Seattle. The mayor today is calling for a heretofore little noticed Confederate memorial in Seattle’s Lake View Cemetary and a statue of Lenin in Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood to be removed. A sad day for Groucho Marxism!

Meanwhile, in southwestern Washington, a former highway marker honoring Confederate President Jefferson Davis along State Highway 99 that now sits in a private Ridgefield park was defaced with black and red paint last night. The group maintaining the park, the Sons of Confederate Veterans, told Oregon Public Broadcasting on Friday that they will defend the monument and the park “by any means appropriate.” When asked if that meant weapons, the spokesperson declined to say.

7:25 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

I think the big difference between Germany and America is that Germany does not try to pretend that Nazism never existed.

Also, I do not think the progs protesting against neo-Nazis are legitimately against racism and all that. After all, they did very little when Bush Jr. and Obama were bombing innocent Muslims. The prog reaction seems to be an emotional one against anything which threatens the status quo.

10:49 PM  
Anonymous BH/Chopped Liver said...

I don't fly the Confederate flag because I believe a good loving person would not want to do something that offends or hurts others when there is no reason to do so. That's just me though. I live in a neighborhood that has all the races in the world present and I do not want to hurt the feelings of my black neighbors who have always been kind and caring towards me.

Sometimes you have to do things in life that may offend people, though not for offending for its own sake but because things just have to be done. Flying the flag of a nation that was going to be built on slavery and racism just isn't one of those times. That's just my opinion which no one has to give any attention to. Let everyone be right in his or her own mind.

1:52 AM  
Anonymous Megan said...

Gunnar, Bingo,

Yes, and it's worth mentioning that Whitaker himself is not 100 percent opposed to psych. meds., and approaches the subject with considerable nuance. He says several times that these drugs are likely the best answer for various types of people. I don't know you own history, Gunnar, but I agree that in some cases psych meds. can be a life-saver. It sounds like you personally had and adverse reaction to Lithium, yet I don't doubt that the same drug has saved many people from suicide. That said, I agree with Whitaker's point that there is a gross misrepresentation about how these drugs work (for instance, the "chemical imbalance" fallacy which Whitaker repeatedly demolishes with a host of convincing studies), as well as their potential long-term consequences. (Especially the danger of increased sensitivity to the very illness they are purported to cure.) At the very least, Whitaker is no quack and knows his subject inside and out. I would advise anyone to read his two books and watch his various videos on YouTube before deciding whether or not to begin a regimen of psych. meds.

2:53 AM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

Was Plato on something?
> Was Berman on something?

fun read

7:22 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I'm heavily sedated most of the time (Haldol drip).

Meanwhile, this is from Simon Dubnow's "History of the Jews in Russia"; he is writing of the yrs leading up to the revoln of 1905:

"But the Russian Government was, properly speaking, not a Government. It was a caste of officials who had degraded the administration of the country to the systematic endeavor of saving their own personal careers and class interests, both of which were indissolubly bound up with unlimited autocracy."


ps: Steve Bannon is a turkey. Good riddance. I have just now written Trumpi suggesting that he be replaced by Lorenzo Riggins.

11:10 AM  
Anonymous Zarathustra said...

As somebody that spent decades reading Nietzsche, whose belief system was completely shaken by his books and who finally grew out of it, I feel compelled to comment (hopefully in half a page).

Nietzsche is a very complex philosopher, full of contradictions. He personally detested antisemites and would write extremely harsh critiques of Germany and its people. In a way he predicted the Third Reich when he described the cultural degradation of the Germany of his time. On the other hand, his fundamentalist atheism probably drove him to develop the core of his ideas: the raw will to live, the ideal of a superior group (note I use the word "group" instead of "race") of men, unrestrained by any morality or concept of good and evil. It cannot be denied, in my view, that this led and can lead again to Nazism when this group of superior men is given a concrete identity. And even if Nietzsche left it vague and open, or precisely because of it, his philosophy cannot be separated from Nazism.

11:56 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


As several scholars have observed, had Nietzsche lived to 1933 he wd have been among the 1st to be thrown into a concentration camp.


1:22 PM  
Anonymous turnover said...

Bannon gave a juicy quote in his interview with The Weekly Standard-- home of William Kristol and a number of neo-con think tank authors:

“I feel jacked up,” he told the Standard. “Now I’m free. I’ve got my hands back on my weapons. Someone said, ‘it’s Bannon the Barbarian’. I am definitely going to crush the opposition. There’s no doubt. I built a fucking machine at Breitbart. And now I’m about to go back, knowing what I know, and we’re about to rev that machine up. And rev it up we will do.”

It's likely to be an entertaining battle. Bannon could create problems for Trump now that it's clear Trump isn't strong enough to deny much of what the deep state wants. Bannon always viewed Trump as an imperfect instrument. But, hey when you want to make big changes, you've got to go with what's available.

2:07 PM  
Anonymous Strongest Man ... in The World said...

Hiawatha Bray on free speech and Shutting up the alt-right

@BH/Chopped Liver, @Jack L, @ Turkey-Buster, re: statues

How To Roll Back Fanaticism

2:25 PM  
Blogger Grandma said...

Megan/Gunnar, the problem with most drugs manufactured in the last several decades is that they usually target very specific "somethings", thereby ignoring the fact that people, human bodies, are complex systems. Target one something, and then you get pushback from something else, if this makes sense. The whole "one size/drug/app/device fits all" mentality is an approach focused on profit, not healing, not happiness, not a philosophy for living well, not "connecting people". Combined with overprescription by unscrupulous or greedy doctors in bed with the manufacturers, we have a pharmacological shitestorm.

troutbum, thanks so much for posting that aeon article, which perfectly illustrates the shitestorm we are currently facing. Bottom line, given 40 years of dollars buying less and less, is that the pushback is coming, manifesting as Antifa vs fascists, since the malignant overlords are so far untouchable. No tumbrels that I can see. Only question is how many will die before the malignant overlords intervene (by capitulation).

Dr. B, thanks so much for the reminder ablout chapter four. My copies of your books are still in boxes (long story) so it will be several weeks until I can get my hands back on them.

A question, however: the cyclical nature of history hasn't really been accepted by historians, has it? Will you comment on that?

2:29 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dear Dr. B & Wafers:

I thought the linked photo below might be of interest. It shows a large KKK rally on the Gettysburg battlefield in 1925, when the Klan was at its height. You will note that there are NO Confederate flags- Union veterans were still alive and would not permit the Confederate battle flag to be openly displayed. Although- note what appears to be UNION veterans standing front and center. (On my browser, I had to click on the photo to enlarge it, and use the slider bars to pan left or right and up or down.)

Also fascinating in the photo is the sign to the left of center- "we go to church, do you?"

Here's the National Park Service link explaining the photo. You have to scroll down a little when the page opens to where it says "Oak Hill." Read below that heading; there's links to higher-res versions of the photo, presidential speeches, plus a wealth of related information-

2:48 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

It's all so bloody confounding!

It looks like the Monumental Bronze Co. of Bridgeport, Connecticut said "Rebel schmebel, a sale is a sale."

3:14 PM  
Anonymous Regalia said...

Having a The Onion is Reality moment

3:46 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

I think the real reason that Americans get so self-righteous about racial issues is because they do not know the truth behind slavery, the South and the Civil War and are not interested in finding out the truth.

As Mark Ames pointed out, slavery was an inhumane institution, but it was not much worse than modern-day corporate slavery. The North was also far more racist than the South was , Lincoln himself being a very good example. Considering all of this, I see the Civil War as just another one of America's imperialist campaigns. There was massive damage done to the South's infrastructure and to civilians as well as a campaign of lies and disinformation from the North used to justify the "intervention."

12:17 AM  
Anonymous Turpin said...

fun debate on Freud's legacy

7:18 AM  
Anonymous Sujoy said...

Punching anyone is a terrible idea. Violent streets were the petri dishes in which Nazism flourished, no?

I know we've been joking about pummeling, but I had an extremely peaceful friend get seriously injured by neo-nazi thugs after he attempted to raise his own fist [v. uncharacteristically] in an act of civil disobedience

What's a WAFer's takeaway?

10:48 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Kung Pao chicken?


Rise and fall of civs is accepted by quite a few, I believe, from Toynbee onwards.


12:57 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Preaching to the choir---dumbphones and shit("x")boxes were a form of digital drug. Brain imaging research showed that they affect the brain’s frontal cortex — which controls executive functioning, including impulse control — in exactly the same way that cocaine does. Technology was so hyper-arousing that it raised dopamine levels — the feel-good neurotransmitter most involved in the addiction dynamic — as much as sex, or maybe van or donkey f--k-ing.

This addictive effect was why Dr. Peter Whybrow, director of neuroscience at UCLA, called the irradiating screens “electronic cocaine” and Chinese researchers called them “digital heroin" to be used very sparingly.

We're very happy with this as it is yet another nail in the us coffin to a tone deaf failed society.

1:10 PM  
Anonymous door said...

Comedian Dick Gregory died.One of his one liners that was posted I have to repeat.Dick sat down in a restaurant and the waitress told him that the restaurant did not serve colored people to which he replied Thats OK I don't eat colored people but I'd like some fried chicken.I laughted at the this comment until tears formed in my eyes.I realized I had not laughted like this in a long time my guess was times we are living are depressing and makes harder to think things are funny even though they are.Thanks

1:37 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

My father lives near Charlottesville, and told me that a friend--a retired Baptist minister--was among the clergy who went down to oppose the rally. At one point, they linked arms formed a line to show their solidarity against hatred, only to have several of the protesters shove into them and knock several of them down. When they asked some nearby policemen to do something, the officers shrugged, and my father's friend said that he could swear one of them was smirking.

Hearing this reminded me of what the editors of Naked Capitalism wrote several says ago:

"...the elites live in blue cities, not even geographically contiguous, not even remotely capable of provisioning themselves. And that’s before you get to the fact that the people who own guns and the people who use them in their line of work are overwhelmingly not part of the 10%. In other words, this is a prescription for violence directed at the 10% and groups they’ve been trying to win with the thin gruel of identity politics..."

Bad times are indeed a-coming.

2:17 PM  
Anonymous Kid Eternity said...

Wondering if people have seen the movie "The Founder" and what they thought of it. My own opinion is that if there were any movie out there at present that so vividly depicts the moral rot at the center of American hustling culture it's certainly this one. It focuses on the dismally banal evil of standard American business practices as ruthlessly employed by the equally banal Ray Kroc, the supposed "founder" of the McDonald's empire, against the two hard-working, clever but tragically naive McDonald Brothers, the founders of the ORIGINAL McDonald's restaurant in San Bernardino. I don't want to go into too great detail here about the story - the film is up on Netflix at the moment and can easily be acquired otherwise - but if you want to see in vivid detail how the vultures of American Capitalism can take a relatively decent (I stress the term "relatively") business idea founded on integrity, quality and service to the community and turn it into an infernal perpetual-motion machine specifically engineered to do nothing more than churn out cheap crap for the barbarous multitudes and hefty profits for the parasitic corporate overseers, this is definitely a film to put on your to-view list. Some have complained that the film doesn't go into sufficient enough detail about how destructive the fast-food industry in general is and how its practices have put humanity and the environment in peril, but that's not really the aim of the film-maker here, whom I believe is very quietly trying to pose the question without bashing us over the head with it: if this is the sort of ruthless goniff that many Americans would imagine to be the "ideal American", and these are the shady and deceitful practices he heartily subscribes to, what sort of pathetic empty creatures are Americans bound to be, and what sort of vile, lawless monstrosity is a country of such benighted rubes also bound to be? Of course, as with many American movies, the director plays it pretty coy about where precisely his true beliefs lie, so it may be I've completely misread the film and it actually represents a heartfelt love song to Capitalistic over-reach - thus my interest in hearing what others may have thought of it.

5:20 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Well, well, well.

An octogenarian New Hampshire woman put a contract out on somebody. Apparently she didn't think she was going to get caught.

Turns out the hit man was working for the police.

In a small N.H. town, it’s hard to hire a hit man without drawing attention.

And another New Hampshirite finds himself in hot water after going to the Unite the Right torchlight parade on the Univ. of Va. campus: "Officials from the Virginia Commonwealth Attorney’s Office said Thursday that [N.H. resident Christopher] Cantwell is wanted for illegal use of gases, and injury by caustic agent or explosive. Both are felony charges, officials said."

Warrants issued for N.H. white supremacist.

5:31 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Uncle Noam's kid nails it:

Over the years I have come to see more and more of what Adolph Reed calls “posing as politics.” Rather than organizing for change, individuals seek to enact a statement about their own righteousness. They may boycott certain products, refuse to eat certain foods, or they may show up to marches or rallies whose only purpose is to demonstrate the moral superiority of the participants. White people may loudly claim that they recognize their privilege or declare themselves allies of people of color or other marginalized groups. People may declare their communities “no place for hate.” Or they may show up at counter-marches to “stand up” to white nationalists or neo-Nazis. All of these types of “activism” emphasize self-improvement or self-expression rather than seeking concrete change in society or policy. They are deeply, and deliberately, apolitical in the sense that they do not seek to address issues of power, resources, decisionmaking, or how to bring about change.

How (Not) to Challenge Racist Violence
Aviva Chomsky

8:07 PM  
Blogger Nesim Watani said...

I enjoy the removal of the Confed Statues for two reasons. One, they piss off people who want to believe in a lie of Southern History when those generals should have been forgotten. Two, you get to see how ignorant people are of their own society. So, one of the biggest Lies of the United States of America is the view that it is a Diverse Nation. That is a LIE. I have been arguing about the movie industry and how people claim that whites are over-represented but the stark truth is the number of white actors/actresses corresponds perfectly with the demographics of the country.

In fact, what many SJWs (i hate using that term but yeah) are actually arguing for is due to their view that the country is far more diverse than it really is. What is funnier is that many of them have been embracing racist tropes like the idea that all Asians look alike. I am very amused by how these people want actual racial representation but will then argue that Indians playing Arabs and Chinese and Koreans playing Japanese is okay because "hey they are all Asians!". This country is full of imbeciles.

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Watching the Marching Morons said...

To Sujoy:

This Wafer studies Aikido. I wouldn't raise a fist, but rather an open hand, and then only to flow with an incoming attack (if the attack were high). As for a peaceful person like your friend raising a fist, it appears his emotions overtook his reasoning and physical abilities.

This is one reason I am not a pacifist, nor do I admire them. That doesn't mean I seek out violence or intend to use it as a means to get my way. But I don't intend on being an unwitting, incapable victim in this culture of violence either. Pacifism + inability to defend yourself = victim. Mass graves around the world are filled with people who fit this equation. Just my take on skills need for life in 'Murka these days. And yes, I know all about the "how does your martial art work against a gun" snappy come back. But I still want the ability to protect my family and myself against the nut job who assumes his/her "ultimate form" because their chicken nuggets were served cold.

9:33 AM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Excellent essay here (hopefully you can read it) regarding IP on the campus:

"What matters about these academic trends is that they give an intellectual patina to the narcissism that virtually everything else in our society encourages."

"What replaces argument, then, is taboo. At times our more privileged campuses can seem stuck in the world of archaic religion. Only those with an approved identity status are, like shamans, allowed to speak on certain matters."

9:48 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

As the empire goes down the shitter, I'm reminded of this song by OO.

All aboard the MAGA train, hahahahahahaha....
I'm going off the rails on this crazy train.

10:33 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Touche! I've been saying that for yrs.


I think it was Gregory who said, "If we're always choosing the lesser of 2 evils (in our elections), how come things are getting worse?"


11:23 AM  
Blogger Baron Von Strangeknight said...

I have been enjoying reading through a wikipedia article on the Origins of The American Civil War. It is quite enlightening and really mirrors much of what WAF Chapter 4 is about. Sadly, no U.S. school children will ever be taught this.


1:10 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Wafers and Dr. Berman,

James Howard Kunstler rails against our 'health care system', he might just as well call it looting because that appears to be what it is. He has nothing good to say about the Dodd-Frank replacement for Glass-Steagall and notes the negative consequence of cell phone use by young people - that lack of face to face interaction between people itself will decrease social skills and contribute to community breakdown. More on the American Empire's decline this blog is bringing together.'

1:32 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Secret Service woes. Maybe some of Drumpf's more ardent supporters can volunteer their services as a protective detail. There are historical precedents for such things after all. One in particular comes to mind.

Let's hear it for our Millennials. Doing their bit to bring the whole thing down.

Everyone must do his/her/its bit. Gay, straight, male, female, undecided. We're all in this together.

3:16 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

al-Qa: not to compare myself in any way to a Chomsky, but just today I was thinking how sad it is that radical leftist protesters in this country have devolved from linking arms at the Pentagon at the height of the Vietnam War and chaining themselves to nuclear missile silos in the 1980s to vandalizing crusty old, pigeon shit covered hunks of marble. Up in Baltimore, where the city government has already agreed to remove four confederate statutes, some antifa douchebags decided that wasn't enough and defaced a 225-year-old statute of Columbus. What's next, dynamiting the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial and the FDR memorial (the latter over Japanese-American internment during WW2)?

Going even further down this completely idiotic road, the city of Manassass, Virginia, is cancelling its annual Civil War weekend that normally features tours, lectures and reenactments over safety concerns. Heaven forbid some dumbass douchebag American would attend an academic lecture and actually learn something:

5:59 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

America has a reputation for individualism, but this individualism only seems to apply to the pursuit of wealth/status/power and material needs. In a more general sense, America seems to be very repressed and totalitarian, and Americans often engage in authoritarian groupthink.

Western Europe is very different. There are more checks in place to make sure that private ambition does not threaten the material public good too much. Free and non-authoritarian thinking is also encouraged more in Western European countries.

9:38 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Gig - Define "corporate slavery" for me, then we can compare it to actual slavery. Also, antifa should be taken at their word. As disorganized as they are, they want to beat up Nazis/white supremacists. They punched Richard Spencer in the face. Do fascists have a monopoly on violence? Is that how the allies won WWII? Did they just let the Nazis fight unopposed until Hitler "got tired of winning." Did their resistance turn them into fascists? Clearly not. The idea is silly. You don't have to be for everything a group does, but you should at least acknowledge that these groups don't clash because they agree.

10:25 PM  
Anonymous Bingo said...

Gunnar, Megan,

I also recommend Peter Breggin’s many books and web site and YouTube interviews. He is a psychiatrist that has been exposing this industry for decades. He is currently involved in starting clinics that address mental illness problems without drugs. His web site is excellent:

Yes, psych meds can help people, but they were not tested over long periods of time, which is how they are being prescribed. They are useful to stabilize somebody over a period of a few months (how they were tested) and then start long-term psycho-social interventions. What we see in America (and other Western nations) is an out of control mass medication of the population. It’s all greed driven.

Re. some people not being fit for hustling. Also, some people change from hustling to non-hustling. I used to be a crazy hustling Jewish kid in New York, running all sorts of businesses. Now, in my later years, I outgrew hustling, became a psychologist (i.e., not making much money) and am much happier. People can change.

Bill Hicks,

Regarding Naked Capitalism, Webber (Smith) did say in an email to me that she worked for Soros in the 90s. That after I asked her to disavow him, first in a posting in her blog (which she immediately deleted and blocked my access) and then in email. I do not know whether or not she still works for him now, but her reaction was quite telling. That was my experience with her.


11:00 PM  
Anonymous Harold said...

Lay off men, Lessing tells feminists

11:59 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@Kid Eternity,

I saw "The Founder" and I agree with your assessment. Most Americans would probably approve of Ray Kroc’s business practices and personal life decisions because for most Americans winning and getting what you want by any means necessary are the only things that matter in life. Most Americans would likely see the McDonald Brothers as losers because they had principles other than winning at any cost.

Being unsuccessful is the greatest sin in the American religion. The term “failure” used to only describe an unsuccessful business venture. However “failure” eventually came to be seen as something that defines the totality of a person.

Scott A. Sandage wrote a good book on the subject called “Born Loser: A History of Failure in America.” Sandage did a good interview about his book with Diane Rehm back in 2005.

5:20 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


But did they listen? No! Check out film "Adore," based on one of her novellas.


Cdn't run it (length rule).


Watch length, thanks.


9:45 AM  
Anonymous Rocky said...

@gig @jacob
yaaaa that seems very strange. Corporate life is zombie world but very different than real slavery!

12:02 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Does it appear to anyone else that the whole repeal Ocare was really a well choreographed failure? They knew that mumbo-jumbo crap weren't going to fly so it got pushed around a bunch until the dude with brain cancer killed it - seems like among Trump supporters everyone saves face.
MB, I finished DAA, you end by questioning if it will help anything. Maybe not in a macro sense but for me it helps to know where the fault lines are (seems like everywhere) and when the waves start crashing maybe, if I see what's coming my way, I can somewhat protect myself and keep on carrying those sand bags against a rising river. Very helpful.
-Bingo, very cool you became a psychologist, it's a tough slog - transform the individual or transform culture - I go back and forth all the time, mixture of both I know. Most people mistake what I think of as my righteous indignation for simple anger like I want to tear it all down which isn't true. I think many, maybe most, people caught up in mass incarceration should be in hospital and given quality care. CU Boulder psychiatry dept is doing good research. I rd an article where their findings seem to indicate if a person with schizophrenia receives quality intervention when they have their first break (usually early 20's), has family "buy-in" for therapy, and gets quality outpatient psychotherapy, it may well be curable for many people with some needing longer term meds. Of course medicaid won't pay and the "community" mental health centers I've been to are a sad joke. There is long term research being done on meds, I'm the guinea pig.
Of course if you're rich you can go here:

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-buster said...

A few tidbits today--

In Steubenville, Ohio, the father of a high-school football jock who was convicted of raping a sixteen year old girl shot and wounded the judge in an ambush. The article is unclear whether this judge was the same one who had presided over the case.

Father of rapist shoots judge.

Also in the news, out in Hopkinsville, Kentycky, 'Murkins have an eclipse party in the way that only 'Murkins could.

Dispatch from Eclipseville.

And there’s a chill in Washington thanks to a potential financial and economic catastrophe looming this fall. And business people are afraid that CONgress and Trumpi will not be able to come to an agreement to ward it off.

The default cometh (maybe).

2:57 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Julian: that's all well and good, but it hardly renders Naked Capitalism "fake news." Indeed, throwing Soros's name around as a smear is something I've noticed that a lot of conservatives like to do as a dog whistle to try and automatically discredit people they consider to be their enemies.

Turkey-buster: that last story you posted about the possible federal debt default highlights exactly the issue I raised above. It's the potential trip wire for Trump that could not only destroy his presidency but cause the entire American economy to crash in the manner of Lionel Shriver's book, The Mandibles. Of course, given Trump's idiotic speech on Afghanistan last night, it looks like it's going to take an economic collapse to finally stop America's countless military misadventures. Michael Krieger wrote a blog post just today about that possibility:

9:21 PM  
Anonymous berman-mossad-agent said...

fuck you berman mosad agent

6:35 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


You see what I hafta put up with from antisemitic trollfoons. This poor turkey sent a flurry of hate messages, most of them using the words 'cunt' and 'jew'. A chic kinda guy, clearly. But I do like the idea of myself as an agent of Mossad. I think I'm gonna sign up for classes in Krav Maga.


Cdn't post it (half-page rule).

Meanwhile, I assume all of you know the blog will be closed during Sept. 10-Oct. 4. It turns out that the Pope is, like myself, a member of Mossad, so we shall have a lot to discuss. In addn, those of you who plan to attend the NY Wafer Summit Meeting on Oct. 29, pls write me at to get the venue.


11:46 AM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Mark Ames does a good job discussing the reality of slavery in the South and not the myth put forth by pro-North historians. This passage from Going Postal is a good one:
"Most slaves lived by a dull schedule of work, recreation and sleep. Slaves generally weren’t kept behind barbed wire or cuffed to a ball and chain (except as punishment in the rare case that they tried to escape). Instead, many slaves were allowed to walk into town (they had to carry their identity papers with them), permitted to visit slaves at other plantations, and given leisure time, so long as it did not affect the slave’s work habits. Many slaves were even paid cash or allowed to sell excess crops like serfs or sharecroppers. They used the money to buy clothes and goods, to court a spouse, to raise a family, or in some cases to buy their own freedom."

It seems to me that the only major difference between Southern slavery and modern slavery is that modern slaves have a limited choice regarding which plantation they work on. Another truth that most Americans do not care to know is that Lincoln was a diehard racist, as shown by these quotes of his:
“I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and black races . . . . I, as well as Judge Douglas, am in favor of the race to which I belong, having the superior position. I have never said anything to the contrary”
“Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and . . . favorable to . . . our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime”

Personally, I think the Civil War should be added to the very long list of American wars that were colossal mistakes.

12:42 PM  
Anonymous Darrin said...

Oh boy...

1:27 PM  
Anonymous Mike R said...

Dr. Berman--trollfoons ARE americans. When you're intellectually and ontologically bankrupt, what do you hafta to loose, what's your "ammo" other than calling someone Jew and/or cunt?

The ever present underlying intense rage and anger is a "tell" of the american.

Perhaps, it's pathognomonic (a hallmark) of the american "brain?"

(Sorry, Dr. Berman--Cannot attend the annual WAFER summit--will be abroad).

1:34 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Belman, Recently you were anti-Israel when you defended Ilan Pappé. Today you're a Mosad agent.
What next? A secret snare for trapping 171 dissident Wafers soon to be dispatched to Gitmo?
Thanks nonetheless for letting a few trollfoons peek into the club once in a while. Without them our discussion becomes too serious too esoteric.

Now back to the regular news,..
What asswipe university board gave this used diaper a doctorate? What does it say about the liberal academia itself?
Doctor Shoctor of Law!! A doctorate in Con-n-Hustle would have be more appropriate.

Here's our other Doctor; a shyster and a war-criminal. Doctor of Law of all the things. Funny!

These elites are as much a joke as the trolls.

1:34 PM  
Anonymous COS said...

I do hope to catch you at the Wafer Summit meeting on Oct 29th!

I know that the topic is closed, but thought you would appreciate this:

A friend passed it along and sure enough (I'm no historian but I do have a computer) main points check out, but no doubt your are better able to confirm or deny....In any case its not what people know, its what is not so that they believe is the problem. All in all the utter stupidity of americans is dangerous and when even bright people (some even wafers I dare say) are mouthing the slogans devised by the corporate media its a hopeless case. Now that the Russian stooge thing did not stick, its now devolved to the president is a racist Nazi. What next?

2:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Next is he'll come out in favor of pastrami, and appoint me to a top job in his admin; which he shd have done a long time ago. Other than that:
1. Always, always capitalize Wafer.
2. Send email to, and I'll give you the secret venue for Oct. 29. You can't imagine how many want to attend. I may hafta change the venue to Madison Square Garden.


Obviously, the turkey who decided I was a Mossad agent missed my long anti-Zionist riffs with a deluded Israeli. Which goes to show ya, I really can't win. Just for the record:

1. I was the guy behind 9/11. It was my idea and planning from beginning to end. I also funded the entire operation. Mohammed Atta was my brother, as is Bibi.
2. I am indeed a Mossad agent, and I'm taking a class in Krav Maga.
3. I'm not only fluent in Hebrew, but my Aramaic isn't bad either.

Mike R.-

I love the trollfoons, quite honestly. They make my day. As Gore Vidal famously said, "Stupidity excites me." We will miss you at the NY Wafer Summit, but then there's always 2018, when De Blasio begs me to return.


3:25 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Jacob James- The antifa/anarchists are probably the only cognizant people left in this graveyard. The world is filled with hypocrites and mediocre banalities with no imagination, no conception of the good--"Last Men" as Nietzsche called them, constipated philistines who cling to their boring lives as the battered prisoner clings to his keepmate. "He who binds to himself a joy/Does the winged life destroy;/But he who kisses the joy as it flies/Lives in eternity's sun rise." These reactionaries can't stand the idea of uncertainty, cannot embrace the ephemeral nature of life, and so try to enslave everyone else by filling the world with hatred, strife, division. They won't be satisfied until every last morsel of spontaneity has been stamped out of humankind, until everybody has been shaped to fit the same repressed, neurotic, orderly mold they feel most at home in. Non-violence only works when your enemy is human. These radicals recognize that evil must be snuffed out before it metastasizes, and they are the only ones with courage enough to actually take to the streets and fight against this latest resurgence of hate. Only a fool would try to make a moral equivalence between these guys and the Alt-right. A film about living free: La Belle Verte

4:47 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B & All:

This is interesting; Trump supporters in their own words-

8:49 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Can there be a more American news headline than, Family Attacks Grandmother And Shaves Her Head For Playing Steelers Broadcast Too Loudly?

Meanwhile, our valiant navy, upon which America unthinkingly bequests trillions of dollars, is apparently so pathetic that there's speculation that its ships are crashing into everything in sight because they're being hacked:

And how fitting is it that the story above, about a ship called the USS John McCain, ends with this sentence:

"...the Navy seems to believe these to be simple leadership failures."

10:56 PM  
Blogger NeilW said...

In The Future of America, H G Wells stated: ''It is not so very evident that Americans did envisage any national purpose at all''.. He wrote this on the ship, Carmania, comparing the vessel to the ship of state. As Dr Berman says, it's not clear what possible purpose aside from a 'glorious destiny' Americans ever had as a nation. Great turbines turning, but simply churning up History's Sea?

4:18 AM  
Anonymous Wile E Coyote said...


You stated: "I think I'm gonna sign up for classes in Krav Maga".

(Maga= Make America Great Again. A secret message to your white supremacist friends? You are crafty Morris Berman, if that is indeed your real name.

8:58 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Yr wily, I'm crafty.


Shaving is gd, but a true American response wd be to shoot her like a dog.


9:50 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

In the continuing saga of memorials, monuments, and morons, this item:

ESPN, sensitive to the feelings and concerns of the easily offended everywhere and no doubt on the advice of counsel, have reassigned an Asian-American announcer named Robert Lee to another football game for the opening weekend of NCAA football. Lee, who is no relation to that scoundrel Robert Edward (AKA Marse Robert), was to call the University of Virginia's home opener in Charlottesville on 2 September against the College of William and Mary.

Crisis averted. Sail on O Ship of State.

10:14 AM  
Blogger C. J. Timmins said...

Father of the Year:

Barstool Sports is quite the glimpse into the Dark Age American psyche. The child crying that she's hungry but wants the money is poetic in its encapsulation of the current generation of American children. Also note the comments of people who want to do this to their own children. Keep an eye out for this "game" spreading like a virus.

Looks like we can add Sadism to the growing list of requirements and traits to be a considered a "true American" - Delusion, Anxiety, Anti-intellectualism, Hustle (deceiving others for personal gain & mindless rushing), Materialism, Negative identity. Of course, we now hardly bat an eyelash at manifestation of these traits: (bullying, patriotism, social aggression, dominance, vacuous financial gain, accumulation of stuff.

Am I missing anything?

11:42 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Dear Morris,

All of Manhattan is breathless with anticipation for your return. Word has it that the Russian Tea Room is planning on extending its hours of operation; preparing vats of borscht and platters of Chicken Kiev stuffed w/butter for yr arrival. Katz's Delicatessen is naming its famous kasha knish 'the Atilla' in yr honor. In addition, if yr in the mood for a schvitz, several East Village bath houses have incredible Dead Sea salt massages and oak-leaf platza scrubs. In any event, I hope you enjoy yr stay in the Big Apple!

With kind regards,

Bill De Blasio,
Mayor, NYC

1:29 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Yr too kind, really. I'm hearing abt possible rioting at LGA, upon my arrival. Meanwhile, 100s of people are writing in, begging to come to the Wafer Summit Meeting. Borscht, pastrami, Dead Sea salt--I'm fainting in anticipation.


4:59 PM  
Anonymous Schlomo said...

There's a new documentary on Netflix by an Australian filmmaker entitled "Barbecue." He traveled all around the world to document different barbecue traditions, but really the focus is more on the social aspect of cooking meat in a group rather than food itself. Surprisingly there are some Wafer observations to be made in this film:

1) Mongolian family living on the steppe. The contentment this man feels living in a beautiful countryside and spending all his time with his family is an inspiring example of MB's Nomastic Option.

2) Armenian family: one of them made some really emotional comments about how Armenia is his motherland, the importance of respecting that land and fostering it, and how he doesn't believe in just abandoning one's motherland. It made me depressed that as a child of immigrants born in the US, I really feel no deep attachment to the US, and have no motherland. I suspect this describes most of the country, and is probably why Americans treat the place as a dump that needs to be hustled and milked for cash until it dies. Abandoning your motherland in pursuit of wealth is the ultimate hustler move; "nation of immigrants" just means "nation of hustlers."

3) American scenes: they travel to a Texas rodeo and the contrast of the Americans with the other countries is remarkable. Aggressive, angry people rattling on about the Constitution and rights. No depth of soul. Embarrassing.

4:59 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


There is only one question facing any given American: will I be a human being, or a turkey? 99.5% have already made up their minds.

This is not hyperbole.


5:08 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

-from the doc who defined narcissistic personality d/o for dsm-iv, I want to check out his book. Just about everyone I talk to is evidence enough for me that they are living in a mass delusion.

I found this song to b a realistic affirmation:

Feeling some Elton John, who knew the lyric would take on a different meanning 50 yrs later, guess thats why they call it art (cool it was recorded in Colorado)

6:56 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

More proof that Americans, especially liberals/progs, live in the land of cognitive dissonance.

Apparently, the neo-Nazi retards in Charlottesville are bad, but the far more dangerous neo-Nazis in Ukraine are a-OK and don't need to be mentioned. Of course, the neo-Nazi retards in Charlottesville should be denounced and fought against, but "antifa" is not the right group for the job IMO. They are just useful idiots for the American military-industrial complex and a war-loving American people.

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Megan said...

What do Elagabalus and Caitlyn Jenner have in common?

Actually, I don't know enough about the subject of Transgenderism to have a strong opinion, but it strikes me that Camille is probably on to something here.

2:27 AM  
Anonymous Aleida said...

this looks wonderful

6:20 AM  
Anonymous Brooke said...

MB r u familiar with Kerzer

Ritual, Politics, and Power

8:30 AM  
Anonymous John said...


I also believe that Mark Ames' Going Postal is a great book but I think its brilliant critique lies in an analysis of American societal neurosis and not American chattel slavery. These comments about the mostly benign nature of American chattel slavery are not substantiated by many scholars and historians. Violence and trauma are not only physical but psychological as well. In the end, slaves were slaves through coercion and let's not even mention the horrors of the Middle Passage. I will defer to others much more qualified than Ames for a deep and nuanced exploration of American slavery.

I suggest you read the first-hand accounts of survivors of slavery like Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth and Harriet Tubman. They weren't pro-North or pro-South...but they were pro-Liberation.

9:04 AM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

WAFER Schlomo good pts.

About american immigrants leaving their motherland, esp. those recently. 25yrs. The terms many immigrants use are "opportunity," "finding their dream," and want to be "happy."

These terms of course, are code words for the endless pursuit of hustling.

In fact, we have a few German and Italian immigrant-acquaintances who use these terms as to why they came to america.

They work like dogs and are addicted to their jobs robotically talking about opportunities and dreams sans any values or narrative.

They weren't running from Hitler, They were running towards "opportunity." Also, they state that if they cannot make it (another code term) in america, they can go to NZ, AU, or Canada to get opportunities.

Basically, carpet baggers.

10:52 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

C.J. -- I think you nailed it. To compliment your Barstool Sports video, here's a video of a 13-year-old girl being forcibly held down a pushed into a split beyond her endurance by her teammates and coach during cheer camp in Colorado:

As if cheerleading weren't already one of the dumbest activities a human being can engage in, it takes a real American to throw some sadism into the mix.

1:25 PM  
Anonymous Derek said...

I was so happy to discover a new WAFer until I read the last paragraph. Still good stuff, even if he pulls a Hedges at the end. Check it out:


3:57 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Gig - To compare modern day employment to slavery is hyperbolic. Slavery was based on ownership, which meant that slaves & their children could be sold. There's a lot to be done to improve the conditions of workers and citizens, but it's still not slavery. As far as the civil war being a mistake, you're completely wrong. As I stated before, I don't think the north went far enough. It's clear to me that they didn't want to destroy the southern economy (as they were fighting for access to it) so they made prisoners slaves. Then they patted their backs as the south turned blacks into prisoners.

I know this blog likes to praise southern culture or whatever, but the nuance gets stale when you pretend that the north owes the south an apology. Even Morris agrees the war was necessary to end slavery. It's a shame it didn't end all slavery, but the current regime change may be able to finally bring it to an end. In Charlottesville the removal of the statue came with a small reparations package. This is a trend worth continuing. Let the confederacy die so that something worth having may take its place.

5:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I'm not pretending; the North *does* owe the South an apology, esp. for destroying its economy--wh/it definitely wanted to do. And the Confed won't die (or really, rest) until that apology is made; of that, you can be sure. However, I really don't wanna get into WAF ch. 4 and the Civil War all over again. We had it out on this blog in a lengthy discussion several yrs ago, and of course nobody changed their minds abt anything. Fruitless discussion, unfortunately. Let's move on.

Aleida, Brooke-

All looks gd, thanks.


7:20 PM  
Anonymous Marianne said...


A very good article in the August 28th issue of The New Yorker. The Stone Guest Can Sigmund Freud every be killed by Louis Menand. Some of you might be interested in reading it.


7:44 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the ref. Freud is eternal, but overly hung up abt sex, imo. When stirred in with Jung, Reich, Rank, Kohut, Adler, the Object Relations people (Winnicott, Balint, et al.) and a dab o' Becker and Merleau-Ponty, the whole psychoanalytic approach makes a lot more sense.

Can anyone imagine Rom Mittney getting psychoanalyzed? The analyst wd probably fall asleep! Of course, Reince Priebus wdn' be a whole lot better...


8:51 PM  

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