July 16, 2018

338a

OK, Wafers, I managed to borrow a friend's computer here in Mex City, so we're in business. Let's continue the discussion.

-mb

173 Comments:

Anonymous DioGenes said...

Re: technoidiocy

It's a catch-22. You can not have a phone, but then you are excluded from much of the economy, and find yourself 'engaged' in a world populated by people on phones.

I have a hypothesis I would love to test. As each generation is absorbed in the rectangular visual plane, we are seeing a weakening of all the other senses developmentally. We know that neural plasticity reassigns unused neruons to new functions, so maybe we will become as strictly visual as our graphic interfaces.

I also think this is probably a better explanation for the rise of autism than vaccines. Autistic people deeply struggle with sensory integration, and our society is completely destroying our normal animal priority of the senses. They tend to rely on visual cues, but vision was late to the game evolutionarily.

You can read a thousand social critiques of business, but just step into an office and smell the bad cologne and toxic cleaning supplies.

12:33 PM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Someone may have posted this already, but melancholy and climate change:

https://thebaffler.com/salvos/tropical-depressions-kriss-ohagan

though you could put just about anything in place of climate change these days, infants on trial with no representation, healthcare rackets, etc.

1:54 PM  
Anonymous Millennial Realist said...

I just finished Joel Magnuson's "The Approaching Great Transformation: Toward a Livable Post Carbon Economy" and I encourage all Wafers to read it. It really goes in-depth on the issues we'll face in the post-Oil age, which isn't too far away. Scott Pruitt & the EPA doesn't even scratch the surface. Our entire way of life will need to change. The timing of when I read the book couldn't have been better.

I recently attended an urban symposium in my city, which explored local sustainability and suggestions for better urban planning. While some of it was truly about "sustainability," most of it still operated under the status quo of "endless growth." In fact, it appeared that most of the audience (with a few exceptions) were real estate developers AKA "Green Economics." The people sitting right next to me were busy checking e-mail and texting on their phones (technoduchebaggery on full display) and the subject matter had to be a foreign concept for most of the audience.

And finally, here's a nice story: This Couple Is Happily Married, But They're Considering Divorce to Pay for Their Daughter's Health Care Bills
https://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/Couple-Considers-Divorce-Daughter-Health-Care-Bills-487900171.html
^^ But we're #1, right?

1:54 PM  
Anonymous COS said...

al-Qa'bong and Bill Hicks, Thank you for much more succinct answers to Megan that I am capable of!

I too wish to be respectful in expressing my views and to some extent outrage and was like al-Qa’bong left gobsmaked by this response from Megan to the killing of 500 thousand kids under 5:
“Lack of health provisions led to many Iraqi deaths, but malnutrition (i.e., the impetus for the failed "Oil For Food" program) was a major cause of death related to the sanctions.”
Its evocative of the language which Orwell, Camus and Merton cite as hiding terror behind circular, anodyne bureaucratic language (and exhibited by Eichman per Arendt). There is no agency, nobody to blame as this horror was perpuated by the favored team. 500k kids no problem, Trump executing fairly banal and routine constituted (and yes partisan) actions it’s the end times and shows he is a monster. In my racket (and popularized by Scott Adams) we look for the absolute tell for cognitive dissonance. For example the members of Trumps Cabinet are the most corrupt ever! While this may or may not be true, we can only know for sure if this is so by having extensive and particular knowledge of the members of all Presidential Cabinets for the last 200 years. If memory serves, Presidents Grant and Harding has some real rascals in their cabinets. Baring that, its just assertions.
This sort of thing is galling on a personal level. Probably like MB, maternal relatives were chased out of Russia during the 1930’s. From their prespective they were being starved and killed. From the perspective of the Soviets and many New Deal progressives, it was Russia instituting enlighted policies of economic adjustment and agrarian reform. Such is partisanship I suppose.
Betsy devos for such a nasty person seems to be doing some good: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2018/03/15/education-department-forgives-322-million-in-loans-to-help-historically-black-colleges-recover-from-hurricanes/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.26825f4deb17

2:04 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

cos-

1920s, and it was the Cossacks that they fled (pogroms). Bolsheviks didn't start purging Jews till later.

Mil-

You might also like this:

https://www.amazon.com/Greed-Wellbeing-Buddhist-Resolving-Financial/dp/1447318943/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1531766873&sr=1-1&keywords=joel+magnuson&dpID=41G7d5cV-DL&preST=_SY291_BO1,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch

Yr description of the hip turkeys at the conference--"greenwashing," it's called. What bozos.

mb

2:50 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

"Do not misbehave. Do not sit on the floor. Do not share your food. Do not use nicknames. Also, it is best not to cry. Doing so might hurt your case." "The facility’s list of no-no’s also included this: Do not touch another child, even if that child is your hermanito or hermanita — your little brother or sister."

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/14/us/migrant-children-shelters.html

First it was Barbecue Becky, then it was Permit Patty and now it's Coupon Carl. Meet Trumps AmeriKKKa... How does a country produce so many Turkeys...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5956011/White-CVS-manager-dubbed-Coupon-Carl-calls-police-black-woman-fraudulent-coupon.html

3:19 PM  
Anonymous Sagal said...

https://www.filmlinc.org/films/generation-wealth/

In GENERATION WEALTH, the filmmaker collects an extraordinary visual history of the ever-growing national obsession with financial extravagance.

4:47 PM  
Anonymous BrotherMaynard said...

Not posting much as I am packing...

We're not yet even half way through with Trumpi & friends, not even a quarter when you consider his (likely) second term. Trump has unleashed a bunch of political imitators (see the Georgia governor's race: it's insane)- even when he's gone; he'll be with us in spirit. He's also unleashed a virulent strain of white supremacy amongst the populace (see all the attacks by whites on blacks and Latinos).

It's getting uglier and more bizarre by the day.

BrotherMaynard

4:52 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Waitress PUMMELING!!!


http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/07/13/four-women-wanted-for-pummeling-applebees-waitress-in-georgia-police-say.html

6:50 PM  
Blogger Art McTeagle said...

Dr. Berman,

I'd be interested to know your take on 'AMLO'? Or is it too early to make judgement?
There are some good governments out there, e.g. here in New Zealand -actually working for for its citizens!
I wish the Mexican peoples all the best!

Regards to All,

Art

10:33 PM  
Blogger Eduard Florinescu said...

Hello Mr Morris Berman and fellow wafers,

In your opinion what would be the equivalent of Trump in Roman history, I am thinking not only political situation, but the Empire's background also. I know is not serious history to do that but I find it fun as a game.

My take would be Caracalla, who would Trump rhyme with from the Roman Emperors to steal that Mark Twain metaphor?

Thank you, keep up the good work.

5:56 AM  
Anonymous Kinz said...

"It’s safe to say that Trump has never plowed through the works of Derrida, Baudrillard, or Lyotard (if he’s even heard of them)," argues Michi Kokakutani, BUT...

https://quartzy.qz.com/1327759/trump-is-what-happens-when-postmodernism-goes-too-far-michiko-kakutani-argues/

10:13 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Anon-

Sorry, I don't post Anons. You need a real handle to participate. Also pls send messages to latest post; no one reads the older stuff.

blah-

There is some problem with yr English; I literally cdn't understand WTF you were saying. Also, if you were attacking the blog, you won't get posted--that's a no-no. However, we have no problem with dissent if it is abt a specific issue, if you provide evidence for your viewpt, and if you are courteous. Tall order 4u, I'm guessing.

Kinz-

Actually, this is old hat; I've been saying the same thing for quite a while now. Also check out Essay #15 in AWTY.

Ed-

Caracalla is gd; perhaps also Caligula.

Art-

I see AMLO as a kind of FDR figure: moderate reform in a necessary direction.

jj-

This is also gd:

https://www.theroot.com/woman-who-beat-elderly-mexican-man-with-a-brick-on-july-1827572664

There is so much courtesy and dignity in the American soul, don't you think?

mb

10:35 AM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Sorry to say the same damn thing all the time, but ... another good one from Umair:

https://eand.co/is-america-the-dumbest-nation-in-human-history-9fb98534d6cf

"At the moment of truth, nobody was left to tell it, speak it, defend it, protect it — or even remember it.

The enemy laughed. History rewound. The old game, the old game. Poverty, misery, greed. Ruin, war devastation. It was beginning again. People made of dust — they can’t even withstand the breeze. How can they fight anything at all when the storm arrives? But who turned them to dust? You did. That is what you used your power, which was the greatest power in human history, to do. So what did you expect? Why didn’t you understand any of that — ever?

Because you were the dumbest nation in human history."

10:40 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

No shit, Sherlock dept.:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/we-are-a-deeply-stupid-country/2018/07/16/1742acdc-893b-11e8-85ae-511bc1146b0b_story.html?utm_term=.2b9711bb92b0

10:45 AM  
Blogger Mike Cifone said...

Dear MB,

Haven’t posted in about 3 years or so—got swallowed by the darkness. Struggling to keep hold of some—any—flame. Really hard. I’m in NYC now, Bronx, and it’s really true as the UN report said: we’re sliding backwards developmentally on all metrics. It’s a brutal, callous and harsh life here...

Managed to find that video of the woman dying in an ER in Brooklyn. It perfectly captures what the US really is...

https://youtu.be/9lKUwBCIBzA

11:03 AM  
Anonymous Shaun said...

Our phones and gadgets are now endangering the planet | John Harris

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/17/internet-climate-carbon-footprint-data-centres

11:06 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Hola MB and Wafers,

MB-

It's official: we're dumb.

Megan-

I've no argument w/u about Trumpo or his admin. Personally, I feel that they should all be mercilessly slapped with cold slabs of pastrami and waterboarded w/Cel Ray Tonic. That said, however, a harsh truth remains: Trumpo is simply expediting our collision w/fate, and a future "blue wave" will *not* reverse the course of our doomed vessel, I fear.

Miles

12:23 PM  
Blogger Patrick D. Fitzgerald said...

Wait just a minute, is this the same Michiko Kakutani who meh-ed MB's DAA in 2006?!

https://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/16/books/16book.html

I wonder what she would say to the 06 version of herself at this point in history.
Couldn't track down her email, but if anyone reading this is active on twitter, maybe politely ask her if, knowing what she does now, DAA seems a little more legitimate/prescient than it did at first (and I am sure, only) glance. Especially interested in when she complained that "He is smugly fatalistic and sweepingly dismissive of political debate within the country."

Lol, she won a pulitzer prize though, so I'm probably off base, ha.

1:22 PM  
Anonymous JUS said...

Hi MB and Wafers!

Here's a good debate on Democracy Now with Glenn Greenwald. There's a part one and two that are equally good. I find Greenwald spot on in this one.

And then there is the article by Thomas Friedman in the NYT. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/16/opinion/trump-and-putin-vs-america.html
Is there any other time in history where liberals were in such hysterics as to claim that you are either with two horrible people (Trump and Putin) or with his choice of two other possibly worse organizations (CIA, FBI and NSA) to profess his or her patriotism and commitment to the Constitution? I think Joe McCarthy would fit right in with today's Liberals.

Julie

1:42 PM  
Blogger Christian Schulzke said...

The media is on a roll today.

Trump the Manchurian candidate
Trump is a traitor
Trump is worse than Neville Chamberlain
Trump’s meeting with Putin is worse than Krystal Nacht and Pearl Harbor combined!


I wonder how far down the legacy media has to go before their “moment of clarity,” as alcoholics like to say.

2:41 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

“The value system changed completely. It wasn’t about who you are, but about what you are worth… Morals are completely non-productive in that value system.”

When “timeshare king” David Siegel loses billions in the 2008 financial crisis, the family are forced to travel by commercial jet and one of the children turns and asks, “Mommy, what are all these people doing on our plane?”

“Americans don’t hate the rich, as they imagine they could become the rich. They don’t want high taxes as they think they could become rich and won’t want to pay them. But what they dream of is an increasingly unbelievable fantasy.”

https://www.theguardian.com/global/2018/jul/08/generation-wealth-how-the-modern-world-fell-in-love-with-money

I don't believe in God... but if there is one.. i hope he pushes the restart button on planet Earth...

3:30 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Pat-

It wasn't meh; it was a hatchet job. And she was so cowardly, she wdn't print my response in the Letters section. It's archived on this blog, however, ca. 16 June 2006. If you do confront her abt her assessment, chances are 100% she'll just doublé down. These folks are liars and cowards. As for the Pulitzer, Thos Friedman won a few as well, so that shd tell u what they're worth.

Jeff-

He's jus' doin' his job. History picked him to damage and dismantle the US, and nearly every day brings a headline that he's done something more in that direction. What can I say? I love him. And I'm still open to a top apptment in his admin. (I hope he's rdg this.)

Mike-

Gd to have u back, amigo. You do know that poem by Ogden Nash, rt?:

The Bronx?
No thonx!

mb

3:53 PM  
Anonymous Rj said...

I'm reading the prison correspondences of the late great Nelson Mandela. It's his century birthday tomorrow. I'm also listening to Obama speaking in his honor. As another black man, I am not so sure Mr Mandela would have been honored by that.

Roger

4:58 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Interesting guest article titled "Seeking Root Causes" on Johan Galtung's website:
https://www.transcend.org/tms/2018/07/seeking-the-root-causes/

There are some echoes of CTOS, such as:

"Historians can only follow the material trajectories of “empires” − not the inner progress or regress of individuals. Thus not many can connect the dots and see the law of karma at work."

"Lyndon Johnson (LBJ) reportedly said about the Vietnamese: “When you’ve got them by the b***s, their hearts and minds will follow”."

"While that is a piece of bravado fit for a Texan with a mythical ten-gallon cowboy hat, we know that LBJ’s Vietnam strategy failed. He never “got them by the b***s” − although he might have imagined he did − and he consistently misjudged “their hearts and minds”. While the Vietnamese “hearts and minds did not follow”, LBJ did lose his mind. Post-presidency years of his life were spent under medical and psychiatric care, tucked away in a Texas ranch. No lucrative lecture circuit for him!

Best Wishes,
Himanshu

6:40 PM  
Anonymous WuduFugel said...

Regarding America's version of Christianity, I was reading through some of Mark Twain's speeches. An excerpt from a 1906 speech at Tuskegee University:

"There are two kinds of Christian morals, one private and the other public. These two are so distinct, so unrelated, that they are no more akin to each other than are archangels and politicians. During three hundred and sixty-three days in the year the American citizen is true to his Christian private morals, and keeps undefiled the nation’s character at its best and highest; then in the other two days of the year he leaves his Christian private morals at home and carries his Christian public morals to the tax office and the polls, and does the best he can to damage and undo his whole year’s faithful and righteous work.

"Without a blush he will vote for an unclean boss if that boss is his party’s Moses, without compunction he will vote against the best man in the whole land if he is on the other ticket. Every year in a number of cities and States he helps put corrupt men in office, whereas if he would but throw away his Christian public morals, and carry his Christian private morals to the polls, he could promptly purify the public service and make the possession of office a high and honorable distinction."

7:00 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Kakatuni--she's the MSM's asian golden- child who thinks "negative nellie porn (reality)" sells. What a douche bag.

By deriding Dr. Berman's work, the "news" paper could appear that they are critical of "liberal" voices and it's not just an Anglo-Saxon club either--see we even have an asian female-Kakatuni.

Trumpo is the BEST thing that could have happened to the us empire and usa-ers in general.

Cannot wait for more "resistance"--genitalia hats, letter writing, we must, we should, we need tos, loud chanting, silly signage, floats, energetic speeches, 'revolution talk, etc...etc...

Cognitive dissonance 101.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

Edward Said on intellectuals on exiles and amateurs

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00gxqzv

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00gxqz0

I can't even imagine Adorno living in southern California. Possibly the least philsophical place on Earth? According to wiki he and the other German intellectual refugees were kept in a small geographical area at any rate.

On Echolocation:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b6hrl3

Maybe the human being after 100 years of portable phones will be as different from the human being today as the human being today is from the bat. Our world is a *flat rectangular box*, so how could we expect the old dynamics of quality and nuance? It's as incomprehensible as echolocation.

9:03 PM  
Blogger alyosha said...

He's jus' doin' his job. History picked him to damage and dismantle the US, and nearly every day brings a headline that he's done something more in that direction. What can I say? I love him. And I'm still open to a top apptment in his admin. (I hope he's rdg this.)

A spiritual teacher taught me that everything on this plane of existence has a beginning, a middle, and an end. Furthermore, everyone is usually good at one or two of these 3 aspects. Some folks are very good at creating new things, others at maintaining them, others at destroying the existing order.

There is a Hindu deity named Shiva the Destroyer, who embodies that last aspect, of ending things. I have known Destroyers in my life, people who are dangerous to be around, and who enter a situation and absolutely destroy it, killing off what needed to die, and liberating other energies to move forward in their lives.

Trump is clearly Shiva the Destroyer come to America.

10:38 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B-

My conservative 55-year old bachelor brother-in-law is about to have a "cashectomy." He lost his long-time good job about 3 years ago, and refused to buy Obamacare, even though I had told him that my daughter made use of it while in grad school. The coverage wasn't great for regular visits, but it protected her from a catastrophe. Well, he just had emergency surgery Sunday and they discovered a cancer, and he needs more surgery tomorrow, so I'm sure the bill will be astronomical.

To top it off, my brother-in-law had moved in with my 83-year old father-in-law after the layoff, and basically trashed the house with his stuff. It's now a total pig-pen, and could be featured on the TV show, "Hoarders- Buried Alive." My father-in-law moved in with one of my sisters-in-law while her brother is in the hospital, so we have hired a guy who specializes in hoarding cleanup to help out. It's always something!

10:52 PM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

@DiGenes, Interesting point. I can share my experience, the change I saw happening in my lifetime (or adult life really) in the digital tech era. When we grew up we 'listened' to music: radio, gramophone, then the tapes and the CDs. But music was something to be heard, listened to. Even now, when I listen to a song on youtube, I do not look at the screen if I want to enjoy the subtleties of the music. My son, a product of the digital age (though not an addict), always tends to look at the visual, youtube or music channels on TV. Without that visual stimulation, they do not get it, it seems. We try to dissuade him to the extent possible, seems to be having some effect. But a sign of the age.

Prasen

11:45 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

@Christian--at the same time, FBI attorney Lisa Page testified in her closed door congressional hearing that all of Botoxface's classified e-mails that were sent to her illegal home server were hacked by China in a spearfishing scheme. Even worse, the entire FBI leadership, to include that sanctimonious jackass Comey, were made aware of this felony and chose to ignore it--just as the media is ignoring the story now. What we are witnessing is an attempted coup d'etat against a democratically elected president which, if successful, will result in the CIA and FBI having an effective veto over any future presidential candidates, including (especially) liberal Democrats. The idiot progs are in their blind Trump hatred walking right into a fucking trap being set by their traditional enemies that a 6-year-old child ought to be able to see. From a declinist's standpoint it's all good, of course, since it means that whatever extremely minimal chance America has of changing its downward trajectory will be reduced to nil.

In a related development: apparently Putin has ALREADY been retaliating against America for our insane Russiaophobic rhetoric by dumping nearly all of its U.S. treasuries. Were China, which holds well over a trillion dollars U.S. debt, to follow suit, a scenario similar to the one Lionel Shriver envisioned in The Mandibles would begin to come to pass.

1:16 AM  
Anonymous Megan said...

Dr. Berman,

Can you delete my earlier post before you post it and use this one instead? Thanks, I won't do this again, but I want to answer more succinctly.

COS, Al Qubang,

I'm truly at a loss for why you should be "gobsmacked", by my response, let alone compare me to Eichmann (Weren't you just protesting about me comparing Trump to Hitler?!) Since you were kind enough to quote me, I will write once more what I said, “Lack of health provisions led to many Iraqi deaths, but malnutrition (i.e., the impetus for the failed "Oil For Food" program) was a major cause of death related to the sanctions.” Ok, so I simply stated a fact of history. No commentary. So how do you read those words as me saying that 500k children dying is "no problem"? That is grossly disingenuous in light of what I actually said. Or to imply that this is an endorsement of the hideous Albright? Both of you were exercised by this comment, but I honestly don't understand how you got there, except by terribly skewed reasoning.


At any rate, I think we are just too far apart on this one for there to be any common ground. I get the sense that several people here think Trump is not so bad, or are even fond of him. I just can't relate, but there's no need to keep going back and forth over it and derailing the blog. So I'll let it go at that. Peace.




3:29 AM  
Blogger Mark Moretti said...

Regarding stupidity of Americans, my workplace in Canada often brings me into contact with folks from the US, without fail they ask stupid questions and very rarely can follow the plot of a discussion. One very recently asked me, seriously, when Cinco de Mayo is.

Sadly, many Canadians aren't much better, but all of us do find an elevated level of stupidity among our American co-workers.

7:42 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Just saw a story on our local news station. One of our local malls is "experimenting" with payment for premium parking spaces. You've no doubt seen similar stories about businesses letting people pay their way to the front of long lines already. So the coming great divide in America is between Business & Coach, I guess. Perhaps the wealthier congregants can pay for premium pews at their local churches, too. And groceries can offer the freshest produce to premium customers. Although eventually we'll even have to pay for the privilege of going through their dumpsters, I suppose.

In a bizarre way, it's amazing: no matter how crass & low you think people can go into turning every aspect of human life into a commodity, they can always go lower still.

DioGenes, that makes a lot of sense. I see people becoming physically ill if they lack access to their devices for any length of time; certainly I see plenty in permanent anxiety/panic mode, even when they're constantly connected. Because you can't be connected to everything; there's always more & more to miss; you might be left out of the Borg collective … er, the social loop. Really, what's called "connection" in the digital world is basically a drive-by existence.

9:33 AM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Speaking of Pulitzer Prizes, this is in the category of better to laugh than cry:

"a man called Kendrick Lamar, of whom I had never previously heard, had won a Pulitzer Prize for his “songs,” and suggested that I look up their lyrics, I was shocked but not surprised. One of the choruses of his songs, apparently, goes:

I don’t give a fuck, I don’t give a fuck,
I don’t give a, I don’t give a, I don’t give a fuck

The best that can be said of the words to “Element” is that they are not politically correct. We are as far from sex-neutral pronouns and safe spaces as perhaps it is possible to get. For example, here is the chorus:

If I gotta slap a pussy-ass nigga, I’ma make it look sexy
If I gotta go hard on a bitch, I’ma make it look sexy
I pull out, hop out, air out, make it look sexy
They won’t take me out my element
Nah, take me out of my element"

At first I thought it was a joke from The Onion but it was not. Twilight is quickly turning into darkness.



9:33 AM  
Blogger ToiLET ApPLe said...

Hello from Canada, long time lurker, second time poster. I agree that Trump is a dream come true. Everyday I'm still surprised by the things he says or does......

Trump Calls NATO Ally Montenegro 'Very Aggressive'

https://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/national-international/Trump-Calls-NATO-Ally-Montenegro-Very-Aggressive-488497231.html

lol, you cant make this shit up!

10:15 AM  
Anonymous Jeffrey said...

Kinz and Morris Berman

https://kevishere.com/2017/01/11/pursuing-the-god-of-truth-in-a-post-truth-era/

Seneca the Younger: “Veritas numquam perit.” (“Truth never dies”).
It just sits there, awaiting to be acknowledged.


This is also good. Bernie and the Sandernistas: Field Notes From a Failed Revolution

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Good short little essay here:

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/07/18/you-call-this-treason/

I like that "McResistance™" part, ha!

12:00 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Notes from the underground dept.:

I've been thinking, Wafers, that you hafta admire the CIA's restraint. In the old days, so to speak, Trumpo woulda been shot by a "lone nut" gunman by now, or been the victim of a convenient heart attack, no? Betraying yr own National Security apparatus while sharing the world stage w/yr nation's leading adversary and bogeyman is another presidential first for Trumpo.

Miles

12:05 PM  
Anonymous Gladia said...


Trump Supporter Calls C-Span To Thank Russians For Interfering In 2016 Election

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-supporter-thanks-russia-on-live-tv_us_5b4e3092e4b08609247702a6

2:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Anon-

Sorry, I don't post Anons. If you wanna participate in this discussion, you need a real handle. Fritz Schmaltzkopf might be good.

Toilet-

As you know, I have long advocated nuking Toronto and Paris. I guess we can add Montenegro to the list. Go, Trumpi, go!

Susan-

I love it. Go, Kendrick, go!

Tim-

Remember the woman in LA who beat the old Mexican guy with a brick? I think she's now being charged with attempted murder. In any case, bricks might be the solution for eventually dealing with an overall "coach class" in America: just beat them all with bricks. Then all that will be left will be rich, "reasonable" people. Her name, BTW, is Laquisha Jones. Be sure to check out her picture:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5942971/Los-Angeles-woman-arrested-case-Mexican-grandfather-92-beaten-BRICK-m.html

Go, Laquisha, go!

Megan-

Declinists are fond of Trumpi, and with good reason. I actually love the guy, and am hurt that I didn't get a high-level post in his admin. Meanwhile, as for the Oil for Food thing, check out a movie called "Backstabbing for Beginners." 1st-rate. Note to cos and al: let's drop the discussion, already; more heat than light, methinks.

Bill-

China and Japan won't call in the debt: it amounts to more than $2 trillion, and they want to keep raking in the interest on the loan.

Birn-

What a mess. Probably a common American story, however.

Dio-

I read that various hi-tech labs at major universities are trying to engineer cell fones as a brain implant. Probably only 10 yrs away.

Mike-

The NYT's function is to reassure the professional middle and upper classes that the ship of state is just fine. This includes Michiko. An honest review of DAA wd have opened the door to an alternative (critical) reality, and she was not on the NYT staff for 30 yrs for nothing. Jonathan Franzen called her "The fucking stupidest person in NY": Salman Rushdie said she had no business being a bk reviewer, and Norman Mailer said she wdn't have been able to keep the job if she hadn't been an Asian woman. The NYT motto is "All the News that's Fit to Print," when it shd be "All the News that Fits Our Views." This is hardly genuine journalism, or honest bk reviewing. Plus, the refusal to print my reaction is a sure sign of cowardice (as I said, archived on this blog).

mb

2:46 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

This is pure comedy gold... some are finding it depressing and shocking but for declinists this is sweet music.. all of the politicians featured in this deserve to be made President at some point.. i personally nominate and wish Joe Walsh to be the next President.. what a guy.. apparently you can give him an award and get him to say anything...

" Walsh said that Cohen tricked him into appearing on the show by telling the former politician he was “getting an award from some Israeli TV station because I’m a great supporter of Israel”. "

Who is America ---
https://youtu.be/QkXeMoBPSDk

3:38 PM  
Anonymous COS said...

MB,


Your take on the NYT is certainly accurate! That horrible creed passing for a review while disgusting is not that unusual. What is really weird is their publishing a homophobic cartoon of Trump and Putin! Pretty horrible. Its fascinating to watch (in very small doses) the network news and hollywoods take on events. They seem to think of themselves as the voices of reason, impartiality and virtue. That creatures such as Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer and Charlie Rose were at the pinnacle of these organizations is a bit telling. That many rely on these several organs of information is distressing. It seems I picked the right time to move to Mexico, where flawed as we are we don't have delusions of grandeur, we do the best we can free of sanctimony and hubris and acknowledge problems. We are adults I suppose.

On a collapse related note, Orlov has a money quote "The reason almost nobody in the West realizes that World War III has been happening all along is that the West has suffered a mental collapse as profound as the USSR’s physical collapse. Russia has recovered from its collapse; the West probably never will." Don't endorse all of the piece but very thoughtful: http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2018/07/newsflash-world-war-iii-finally-over.html

3:47 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

A brief cultural diversion:

Both clips captioned for the hard of hearing. Vegan; no GMOs; no glutens. Cis-gendered. No military officers or government officials were harmed in the preparation of these videos. All Rights Reserved.

From Gilbert and Sullivan. The Pirates of Penzance.
“I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General” (English National Opera performance)
https://youtu.be/Rs3dPaz9nAo

And, to bring the melody and lyrics into modern times:
Satirist Randy Rainbow’s song parody “A Very Stable Genius” to the same tune
https://youtu.be/k-LTRwZb35A

3:58 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jas-

My favorite G&S. "In matters that are animal or vegetable or mineral, I'm the very very model..."

cos-

As I wrote in the Twilight bk, it's also a spiritual collapse. The US is the largest collection of empty people (nonpersons) ever gathered in one place in the history of the world.

mb

4:45 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Jas:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jul/18/penzance-britains-first-ever-plastic-free-town-cornwall

Wafers-

This article ends where it shd have begun:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/18/opinion/trump-putin-summit-republicans.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region&region=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-región

More from Zuckershmuck:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/18/technology/mark-zuckerberg-facebook-holocaust-denial.html?mabReward=ACBMG2&recid=17Zbo0SnOfx8ynWBoJoM0hEwBph&recp=1&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&region=CColumn&module=Recommendation&src=rechp&WT.nav=RecEngine

WHAT a turkey!

mb

5:05 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

More screen time for teens linked to ADHD symptoms.

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/07/17/629517464/more-screen-time-for-teens-may-fuel-adhd-symptoms

@WuduFugel

Speaking of the American brand of Christianity, here is a good article on the Prosperity Gospel and its relationship to the American Dream.

https://laciviltacattolica.com/the-prosperity-gospel-dangerous-and-different/

Unfortunately Americans have been exporting the Prosperity Gospel around the world with great success.

6:02 PM  
Anonymous Gordon said...

Who said Trump couldn't read???

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/jul/18/donald-trump-putin-2016-election-russia-cbs

1:53 AM  
Anonymous Megan said...

I'm certainly in agreement with this site's motto of "bad is good"! However, there is one area in which bad is actually bad. That is, our scrapping of any responsibility for climate change, and embracing policies which actively threaten and imperil the entire planet. As Bill Hicks pointed out, the Paris Accord was woefully inadequate. But the scientific expert consensus is almost unanimous in saying that it was a LITTLE better than nothing. More significant, however, is the active Trumpian dismemberment and deregulation of countless environmental protection laws. (It's safe to assume that having 5 Sean Hannitys on the Supreme Court will only exacerbate this.) The half page limit prevents detailing them, but if anyone has the time and doesn't mind getting pissed off, pour yourself a cup of coffee and read this:

https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/03/how-trump-is-changing-science-environment/

Most climate experts think that we are close--if not already past--the point of no return in terms of catastrophic climate change. And the people who will suffer most and die in the greatest numbers are the Third World poor. Chomsky seems to be making this (along with the nuclear threat) into his sole focus "swan song", for the good reason that America is now--of all times!--aggressively destroying the very possibility of life itself. This might well be our blackest legacy.

3:39 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Pummeling is "out." Biting off noses is "in." Quoth the victim: "I don't have a nose. I'm 28 years old and I don't have a nose anymore."

Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania: Men use ax, hammer, shotgun to fight each other and smash windows, police say.

Here's a classic--last year two idiots, sorry, "experts" working for the Department of Energy who were assigned to secure some highly radioactive nuclear material left both the material as well as a small supply of plutonium in their car when they stayed overnight at a hotel in a high crime neighborhood--with predictable results. Once again, in America even the smart people are stupid.

We just didn't listen: “In a nation that was proud of hard work, strong families, close-knit communities and our faith in God, too many of us now worship self-indulgence and consumption.” --Jimmy Carter, July 15, 1979

3:44 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

@Wafers, MB,

Not sure you feel that way, but I really feel like today's generation of young people is THE most boring and depressing generation of young people around. No one protests anything beyond Pussy Hats, no one shouts make love not war in the streets, no one dances, everyone just thinks about how to make it with the next big thing and what "experiences" will look the coolest. Almost 80% of the friends I used to study with at college and who had that rebellious spark back then turned into douchebags in their late twenties. All that seems to matter nowadays is hustling. Sure, the Sixties Generation also turned into Corporate Douchebags further down the road, but I still feel like it was more fun to be a young person back then. Am I wrong?

Kanye

6:05 AM  
Anonymous Italiana said...

Wafers & MB,

I was reading about the Thai boys who were rescued from the cave. They were all very sorry for all the trouble they caused, and will spend a period of atonement for that and for the diver who lost his life. This is a comment in the NY Times that I think sums up the difference between the US and Thai cultures.

"A group of people respected and respectful, regretful, grateful during their time in the spotlight, in a society that will allow them to retreat to monasteries for a period of atonement, to own responsibility for the consequences of their acts. How different the world they live in."

6:33 AM  
Anonymous Perry said...

https://theconversation.com/amp/overtourism-a-growing-global-problem-100029

Overtourism: a growing global problem via TC Africa

10:52 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Italiana, thank you for sharing that lovely example of humble grace. I can't imagine anything remotely like it happening here. Everyone would be angling for movie & book deals, and making endless TV appearances, with merchandising to follow.

Kanye, I agree with you. It seems that honestly caring about anything is terminally uncool & unhip today. Auden once wrote of the Age of Anxiety; now we've got the Age of Snark. Anxiety had gravitas; snark makes run-of-the-mill shallowness look deep. And now we've had a couple of generations raised to respond to even an intimation of depth & concern with mockery, with contempt, and increasingly with violence. Americans know what they've become, on some level, but the last thing they want is to be reminded of it. And anyone whose life has a scintilla of meaning & inner richness infuriates them, reveals their own emptiness & despair to them. Such people have to be nullified.

Stay under the radar, folks!

11:06 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Trans-

I don't allow attacks on the blog. Yr sarcasm is not appreciated. Suggest finding different blog, OK?

Kanye-

I cd provide a lot of sad anecdotes on this issue, but the fact is that there is virtually nothing in the heads of young Americans these days. One prof in Vermont told me that they arrive needing a remedial year, and that their entire conversation is abt video games. They can't identify Hitler or FDR. Etc.

Bill-

See sections on Jimmy in DAA and WAF.

Megan-

Yr rt abt environmental damage, of course. But as for Paris Accords, the experts are wrong. The Accord is totally useless; it has no teeth (enforcement provisions). Trumpi was rt, not to sign on to such hypocracy.

mb

11:09 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

I think Umair has run out of things to say. I quit reading the last article that was posted here after going over the same thing for the third or fourth time. I like his slant on things, but he seems to have reached his limit. At one point he used the word "puppet" to describe Trump. Fair enough, but that word, as well as "treasonous" is being tossed about rather casually these days over at Commondreams.org, where the progs are losing their minds about Trump's comments in Helsinki.

I admit to not be following this Putin/Russia affair very closely - whether the insane clown president wears a big red nose or a big orange nose doesn't seem terrible important. This seems like the the latest version of the "Hillary emails" or "Kenyan Obama" stories.

To single out Trump as Russia's puppet is ludicrous, given how the Israel Lobby, to cite but one example, has been pulling Washington's strings for decades.

11:47 AM  
Anonymous COS said...

Putting aside biases against the author, this is well worth a read. Great line is; "Between them, they left CNN’s nattering nabobs of neocon nonsense sounding like the shrieking monkeys they actually are". Calls out dems/liberals for suddenly due to trump hatred are now warmongers. Strange times--could be sunspots :)

https://original.antiwar.com/david_stockman/2018/07/16/the-vlad-and-donald-show-a-glorious-blow-for-peace/

12:12 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

city bus' despair
Black Mirror on my phone
oh, the irony

in turkmenistan
one must live in hiding or
get eaten alive

12:48 PM  
Anonymous Tom said...

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/manchester-students-scrub-out-kipling-poem-over-his-racism-qdbsk8sjs?shareToken=9e7bef8a21d3b1172d309bda0fd36a9a

“Time that is intolerant
Of the brave & innocent,
And indifferent in a week
To a beautiful physique,
Worships language & forgives
Everyone by whom it lives...
Time that with this strange excuse
Pardoned Kipling and his views”

I see that Auden was wrong!



Just joking. Besides Joyce's The Dead, the Gardener is the best short story in the English language! Kipling was a great poet too

2:36 PM  
Anonymous William said...

http://amp.timeinc.net/time/5341075/trump-air-force-one-paint

"The current tasteful colors of Air Force One—a legacy from the stylish Jacqueline Kennedy in 1962—will be replaced by a louder Trump-preferred pattern. Another bit of our history and tradition is lost."
Cbc
"As the empire declined, its monuments became more boastful." - Edward Gibbon, Wikipedia Dictionary of Invented Quotations

3:24 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

Wow.. You cannot make this shit up. You just cant. Bobby Wilson, what a guy... While Democrats produce corporate lackeys with the same old boring message of "hope, change, peace.. blah blah blah" , Republicans don't disappoint when it comes to "idiocracy". Without the GOP life wouldn't be fun. If you were wondering it's tough to get someone crazier than Trumpi, Bobby Wilson seems to be a step in the right direction. When Trumpi said he can shoot someone on 5th Ave and not loose a vote, Mr. Bobby probably thought "hey even I can be president". We need to start a gofundme campaign and raise money for Bobby and get him to the White House.
Bobby Wilson 2020 "We can kill and chill" ....

"Those records show he was charged with the murder of his mother and sister, and soon after his arrest he confessed to those charges. He later recanted his confession and claimed he had amnesia about the events of the night in question."

https://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/elections/2018/07/16/bobby-wilson-arizona-senate-candidate-says-he-killed-his-mother/772539002/

3:47 PM  
Anonymous J Feigert said...

https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2018/07/19/the-radical-notion-of-a-smartphone-free-campus/

“The smartphone is a special kind of device, though—not because it merely gives us more of the Internet but because the smartphone gets insinuated into our creaturely lives. It has thoroughly ‘extended our senses and our nerves.’ ”

3:48 PM  
Blogger Chairface Chippendale said...

@Megan & Dr. B: About the Paris Accords & related, I have an anecdote: About the time of COP21 (Paris) in 2015, I ran into the director of the IceCube Array, which is a notable astronomical instrument. In our rather brief conversation, this scientist (a Belgian) made a lasting impression on me.

He claimed that the passing over of the opportunity held by COP16-Cancun in 2010 was possibly the nail in the coffin of humankind. He said the governments and politicians were beyond treasonous. Paris was too little, too late. We spoke about the momentous suicide of Lee Kyung-hae at the 2003 WTO protest, also in Cancun.

He added that the Democrats in the US would be uncontroversially understood as a fascist party in Belgium. He said to just look up the term in a dictionary: corporate-funded political party. …He was very unlike an American.

4:02 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Trans-

I have no intention of passing yr sarcastic insults on to blog participants. If you set up yr own blog, you can do that; which I'm sure everyone will appreciate (there's so much love in yr heart, amigo). Anyway, if you post again, I shall delete it without reading it, but as we both know, that won't stop you from wasting yr time (you seem to have a lot of it; I asked u2 leave the blog a long time ago, but ya just can't stay away, can ya?). Have you ever tried comprehending what a jerk you are? Major project for you, I'm guessing. Maybe, like Tolstoy's Ivan Ilyich, you might have a wake-up moment just b4 you die. But there *is* something you can do b4 that: every morning, go look at yr eyes in the bathrm mirror, and really see what a sad little guy u.r., trying to act superior because he really feels inferior (which is indeed what you feel, and rightly so.) Meanwhile, instead of observing common courtesy, you choose to shoot yrself in the foot. To call someone like you a douche bag is practically a compliment.

Chair-

On climate chg, check out a British documentary called "The Age of Stupidity."

al-

These events are mostly theater, really. The MSM spends gallons of ink on supposed Russian meddling, while never mentioning that we meddled in the Russian election of 1996. Not to mention other elections and govts around the world. Check out Steven Kinzer, "Overthrow."

mb

5:23 PM  
Blogger Zarathustra said...

Sorry Tom, but Kipling was indeed a racist bastard. “The White Man’s Burden” was Kipling’s hymn to U.S. imperialism indeed, an apology for the invasion of the Philippine Islands, and so on and so forth.

I don't see why we should unconditionally acquit these sacred cows of all wrong-doing. Sometimes youth does hit the target, I don't know if by accident or by design. I am an old fogie myself, but I hope and pray I never turn out to be like the proverbial embarrassing uncle... or Trump.

Having said that, I do agree that some of his poems are absolutely great, in the same way I reclaim my right to consider Wagner's music as one of the highest summits that humankind can reach, in spite of the fact of his being a disgusting antisemite. Can we entertain these paradoxes in our minds or are we too stupid for that?

6:53 PM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

@Kanye

To be young today is to be some variant of freak or mutant. The conformist types would like to be the yuppie drones, but the workplace is too stressful to really enjoy that kind of leisurely decadence. So they really become burnouts/druggies around 35.

The rebellious types have nothing much to fall back on except a gig economy, which basically means you exist more as a drone bee than a human being.

From our perspective, the games already over. We got our revenge by not having any kids and ensuring the end of the debt Ponzi scheme. It's not protest, more like enlightened disappearance. Pirate free stuff online, live at home, refuse to pay back student debt, never start a family... don't show up and starve the beast is more philsophical outlook of intelligent Millennials.

But you are right, it's all very sad and morose. Gen depression for sure. A few years back I listened to the theme stations on Sirius XM, and I noticed that on the love station 1997 or so was the last year pop music still had real love songs. Now... No more love, all exploitation all the time.

7:30 PM  
Blogger NeilW said...

ENDLESS ENEMIES - Discovered this book and this review in NYT 1984. (Funny about the date!). Another example of negative identity? https://www.nytimes.com/1984/07/17/books/books-of-the-times-068978.html

7:58 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Tucker Carlson on rethinking our alliances:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFRmF0SfHUA

Steven Kinzer on US election meddling:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0LRArfyjK1Y

Miles

8:01 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

ZuckerShmuck wishes to support Holocaust Deniers....


http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/07/19/dear-facebook-and-mark-zuckerberg-just-kick-holocaust-denying-bums-off-your-platform-once-and-for-all.html

8:57 PM  
Anonymous Fritz Schmaltzkopf said...

I've been auditing this site for a while and I'd like someone to explain how it is that any Wafer(do I have that right?) can attack anyone anywhere as savagely as they would like but not even the slightest personal attack is tolerated upon yourselves from within the blog. Is your skin really that thin or am I missing something?

9:11 PM  
Anonymous Aaron Thomas said...

"More Americans Are Dying of Cirrhosis and Liver Cancer"

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/18/health/cirrhosis-liver-cancer.html

This is a sign of the times. The economy has been in recovery for 10 years, the stock market is at all-time highs, and technology continues to get better. Despite all that, people are drinking themselves to death more and more. Obviously something doesn't add up.

From my experience, everyone seems to be in denial. The amount of optimism and positive thinking I see is insane in the face of the amount of addiction, homelessness, depression, misery, and obesity in the country.

9:58 PM  
Anonymous Adrienne said...

Good evening
An excerpt of George Orwell on Trump and Putin, in 1945 [this reminds me of those old mutant pig-man figurines of ancient Greece: “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”

12:45 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

Just lost my respect for Jeffrey St. Clair in COunterpunch. Under "What I'm reading this week" he lists "The Death of Truth" by Michiko Kakutani. She should know. She's one of the great contributors to the death of truth.

10:12 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Fritz-

I guess you haven't been auditing very closely, because I've discussed rules of the blog a number of times. Here's how it works:

1. You cannot attack the blog wholesale. This would turn the discussion into a metablog, and I'm not interested in that. The subject under discussion is the collapse of the American empire. Please stick to that.

2. You can attack any public figure, such as Botox Face or Trumpi, in as nasty a manner as you wd like. Also trollfoons, when I bother to post their garbage. No holds barred. However, you cannot attack anyone on the blog in an ad hominem way. We don't appreciate "Attitude."

3. Dissent and disagreement with anything someone says on the blog are perfectly fine. However, you have to frame it in the following manner:
a) Direct your attention to a specific issue that they posted. No attitude, no ad hominem remarks. We are not here to "flame" each other.
b) State what your disagreement is, and provide evidence for why you think their argument is wrong, and why your counter-argument is right.
c) Observe courtesy at all times, in these cases.

I hope that clarifies things 4u. In the meantime, I suggest you attend to yr own skin.

Neil-

Yes, the true slogan of the US, and our real underlying history.

mb

10:46 AM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

@Fritz, I'm 'savagely attacked' everytime I step out my front door into this cesspool I still call home. Forgive me if I can't find too many positive things to say about it. The blog is respite.

11:34 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

@Tim, Dio,

It just depresses me to see what people turn into. Friends of mine who used to listen to RATM and put posters of Fight Club in their room, who now think that driving an electric moped (it's a big thing here in Paris) and eating sustainable chocolate is rebellious. I've even got a friend who liked Bill Gates' Foundation page on Instagram!! And don't even get me started on all my female friends who only swear by organizing women-only work networking events and hustling. No misogyny intended on my part, but I find it ironic how Yuppie women have turned into the male hustlers they so much criticized. i.e. article from NYT was posted here a while ago about this "I am a woman and I am proud of being greedy" stg like that. I'll get over it eventually, but the pill is hard to swallow for now!

Kanye

1:49 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

"As a Silicon Valley resident, I can’t help but shake my head in disbelief. Juicero and Teforia exemplify everything that is wrong with Silicon Valley: a bunch of super-smart entrepreneurs disconnected from reality who burn billions of R&D dollars to invent “smart” gadgets that nobody needs, or at best serve a tiny elite"

http://thinkers50.com/blog/smart-wise-innovator/

Fritz - You are not missing something but everything. If you have been observing the blog and don't get it, then you are not yet ready for what Wafers stand for. This blog has been a good source of knowledge for me. Wafers share their views, books, movies, etc and we get to learn from each other. No one attacks others here for their race, sex, religion, nationality, etc and name calling each other like stupid high schoolers. Don't worry about our skin, we have developed a very thick skin by observing the "collapse of US empire".

Again, thanks to MB for moderating it, otherwise it would have been another shitshow like Twitter/Facebook

4:28 PM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

With all this hand-wringing about Russia interfering in the election it seems strange to me that no one has mentioned the Citizens United Supreme Court decision that basically turned our elections over to the wealthy. Sure seems to me that's done more to undermine democracy (or what's left of it) than FB hackers.

6:01 PM  
Anonymous Millennial Realist said...

MB,

Thanks for recommending another Joel Magnuson book, "From Greed to Wellbeing." I'll have to check it out. Hopefully he's reading this blog!

Dio,

Quote: "don't show up and starve the beast is more philsophical outlook of intelligent Millennials." Funny you mentioned that, as I do see it pretty often with those in my generation. This is the same generation that created the concept of "ghosting." In fact, ghosting is being used with job interviews: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2018/07/19/strong-job-market-candidates-ghosting-interviews-offers/794264002/.

On one hand, it demonstrates a complete lack of maturity and respect from the prospective employee. On the other hand, these employers & corporations have ZERO courtesy towards their job applicants -- no notification of whether or not application was received or even after the interview, they don't call you back with a courtesy rejection. If you're lucky to be hired, you get to experience year-after-year of stagnant wages and rising living costs. You're lucky to get even 2 weeks vacation. They can lay you off whenever, but you're expected to give them over 2 weeks notice. And above all, the job itself is nothing more than "hustling."

8:25 PM  
Anonymous Marianne said...

Well I just adore both figures! #

What led Merleau-Ponty to engage with the works of Cézanne? #
http://m.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com/mobile/view/10.7208/chicago/9780226031088.001.0001/upso-9780226030920-chapter-2#__prclt=lmXDXhfB

9:06 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Fritz---Everytime I breath usa-er air, am "savagely attacked" with reality because I thk of all the tax dollars going to the 1000+ overseas military bases for imperialism.

Forget no universal health care, no university education (unless massive loans), employment at will doctrine (only in the us), FATCA/CBT, and no pension/real retirement, etc...etc...

WAFER Gunnar--complete agreement--this blog site is a welcome 'home' for truth and 'dealing' with usa-ers.

T-2yrs.

11:33 PM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

I'm not sure who used this phrase above, but the idea of the tech world as 'drive-by existence' was spot-on.

The consequences are going to go far deeper than any study has suggested so far. The screen of impressions combined with the barbarian 'treat the symptom' medical science is going to create some absurd scenarios. Talk to a bot therapist who sends you happy pills?

When society doesn't really believe in the inner human person, you pave the way for massive social engineering in the name of 'science'.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/resolution-not-conflict/201607/are-antidepressant-medications-the-next-drug-abuse-epidemic

It's like the 'medical community' is a dumb druggie that can't figure out why he keeps crashing after every fix. 'Painkillers addictive??? Duh didn't see that one coming need more studies. Antidepressant epidemic? Uh duh I was just treating symptoms. They said they was sad on the form. Whatever. Not my prob.'

BTW, you aren't cool today until you've tried several of these meds before 30. These drive-by prescriptions have made an entire generation incapable of intimate emotional life and all the organic coping it requires.

1:54 AM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@Dr. Berman, Kanye, Dio and Tim,

I suspect that changes in the economy and technology are driving conformism among the young. This study about the rise in perfectionism among the young might help in trying to understand the situation today. Although the study is about perfectionism it discusses the larger impact of the shift to neoliberalism and the impact of new technologies (particularly social media) on young people.

https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/releases/bul-bul0000138.pdf

2:52 AM  
Anonymous Terry said...

The Rage and the Shame: Facing Ourselves after the 2016 Election and Reclaiming the Heart of Our Democracy


https://www.amazon.com/dp/0692107592/

We don’t need to speak truth to power. We need to speak it to ourselves.

In The Rage and the Shame: Facing Ourselves after the 2016 Election and Reclaiming the Heart of Our Democracy, a Jungian study looking at ourselves...

"This book was a great wakeup call for me to examine my own denial about race, economics, and my participation in society. I feel so often that I am progressive and in touch with my Self and all levels of society, but..."

11:16 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

This event gives new meaning to the phrase, "breast-beating":

https://www.liveleak.com/view?i=4a8_1432937730

mb

11:17 AM  
Anonymous COS said...

Spiritual and Mental death....

Humans can be surprising in capacity for great things and also for true sickness. In recent days a fellow labeled an alt-right personality Mike Cernovich (I don't know anything about him and don't endorse) brought to light horrific tweets (10,000!!!) and blog posts depticting rape of chilren by one James Gunn a Disney children film executive. Vile beyond belief. What was even more vile and should trouble any sane person is that many on "the left" and "the media" defended this fellow gunn. Aparently, if heinous acts are not uncovered by the right person well the accuser is the problem. Same people who will fire and harangue person over one improper phrase are o.k. with a person from the left "making jokes (thousands) about child abuse. People of some prominence are defending this guy--just jokes, he has grown past that,..he is provocative! Such is the state of the U.S... Not partisan (I don't live in U.S.) but can't imagine how much more horrible life in the U.S. will be if the "left" takes over. If they succeed in taking down trump, many will be surprised what a horrific turn their Utopia will take. Such is the fall of empires....Leave while you can.

12:53 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Why “Crowdfunding” isn’t a substitute for a working society....


https://eand.co/why-crowdfunding-isnt-a-substitute-for-a-working-society-c32ae34005ea

1:49 PM  
Anonymous Sheri said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/19/obituaries/marion-woodman-explorer-of-the-feminine-mind-dies-at-89.html?smtyp=cur&smid=tw-nytimesscience

Marion Woodman, the Jungian psychoanalyst who wrote on the feminine identity, has died.

Very talented woman.

2:21 PM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Dio,

Yes, the emphasis is completely on "treating" (i.e., quashing/concealing) the symptoms while never addressing the root causes. By "help" they mean getting people to accept a society of greed, competition, willful & proud ignorance; and by "accept" they mean either obeying until the day you die, or, if you're savage enough, clawing your way to a somewhat higher tier of the trash heap. Then you can be a "winner" … apparently the most important thing there is. Just don't ask what it is you've won, or whether it even matters. As noted in the classic TV series The Prisoner 50 years ago, "Questions are a burden to others; answers a prison for oneself."

Tom,

Thanks for that paper on perfectionism. I've seen this myself. It ties in with the pervasiveness of geek culture, too, with its emphasis on tiny details all fitting together so tightly & completely that there's no room for chance, serendipity, imagination. No messiness of organic life allowed; everything & everyone must be precisely joined & connected. What else is demanded of cogs?

3:25 PM  
Blogger Zarathustra said...

I don't know what to think when I see this: Labour MP labels Corbyn an 'antisemite' over party's refusal to drop code. Is it antisemitic to say that the state of Israel is a "racist endeavor"? Well, if there was any doubt, the new Nation State law of Israel asserts that “the right to national self-determination in Israel is unique to the Jewish people.” I can't quite bring myself to forgive them for prostituting themselves and let themselves be used as a weapon by the capital against Jeremy Corbyn.

In any case it seems to me that there are too many people bowing down and worshipping the new Golden Calf, the state of Israel. And remember, the Bible is a history book...

6:57 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

Obama drama .. looks like Bezos is putting some of his net worth into Obama pockets ..

This conservative would take Obama back in a nanosecond apparently .. while I agree that Obama is nothing like Trumpi but idiots like Obama shouldnt be using Gandhi / Mandela ...or compared to them ..

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/global-opinions/wp/2018/07/20/how-i-miss-obama/?utm_term=.4ea8c928c740

Then this guy takes the nice guy cover off Obama

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/07/19/obam-j19.html


9:12 PM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

Re the young, this just came out:

"I enjoy it – it makes me feel important that 100 people are watching what I’m eating.”
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jul/21/generation-z-has-different-attitudes-says-a-new-report

Progs will kill all joy in life:
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/21/trump-putin-kissing-homophobic-queer-joke

On a less depressing note:
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jul/21/defending-earth-violence-murder-activists-land-corruption

Happy Sunday!

Kanye

6:03 AM  
Anonymous Maya said...

https://vimeo.com/279923192

U.S. weapons exports from 1950 to 2017. Data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute's Arms Transfers Database. Units are expressed in trend indicator values (TIV). Each dot on the map = one TIV. Visualization by Will Geary.

11:31 AM  
Blogger k_pgh said...

https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/how-to-survive-americas-kill-list-699334/

“How to Survive America's Kill List” by Matt Taibbi, July 19, 2018

“When a U.S. citizen heard he was on his own country’s drone target list, he wasn’t sure he believed it. After five near-misses, he does.”

Note: the article is roughly twenty printed pages long, which is a bit much for screen reading.

1:03 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

@k_pgh--From the Rolling Stone article you posted: "According to Kareem, in the summer of 2016, things began to explode around him with suspicious frequency. In the space of a few months, he survived five different attacks." Note the date--it was OBAMA who tried relentlessly to kill this poor bastard. Obama the sociopath, who now takes his countless millions in blood money from the likes of Jeff Bozos, Wall Street and America's war contractor establishment.

Here's another related article from Naked Capitalism: Obama Continues His Long Con at the Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture. "Even slaves had the dignity of getting whipped personally, as opposed to being whacked by invisible drones in the sky. (And then there’s the gruesome story of the $100,000 in the plastic sack proferred to the wedding party Obama whacked, as a make-good.)"

Those are the actions of a gangster, a mob boss, of a monstrous human being who knows he can commit mass murder with utter impunity. Oh, I "whacked" the wrong wedding party by mistake? No problem, Vinny--just pay 'em off, will ya?.

4:16 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

Sometimes I ask myself if I was forced to choose between the reddest of red city's like Jackson, Mississippi or bluest of blues SF, CA. I'd havta go with the redcoats and pray I find myself on the right side of the crowd during a public lynching. It's like choosing between prison and a mental hospital. In prison, which I associate w/ the south, at least there is a degree of automity. The guards aren't allowed to call you by your first name *no emotional entanglements* you're a number, sure there's abuse maybe even torture. But a mental hospital where every drive and thought is divulged, analyzed, and manipulated? Maybe a tough call for others but I'd go with prison. My mom, a fairly progressive free thinking Swede, told me yrs ago the left was much worse than the right. I confirmed this later when I moved from Colorado Springs to Boulder, (which are the complete opposites on the political spectrum.)

6:55 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

MB - Sorry for the inconvenience.. but if you can, please delete my earlier post and use this instead... wanted to include an amazing bit of idiocracy...

COS - Mike Cernovich is a moron of the highest order... He is a miserable right wing troll who was charged with rape ... he will attack people who criticise Trump viciously and create conspiracy theories if no truth exists.. the idiot promoted the pizzagate conspiracy and almost got people killed.. these right wing trolls are disgusting vile trash that should never get publicity but sadly do because of some deplorable right wing morons who love to believe in conspiracy theories...

https://www.huffingtonpost.in/entry/mike-cernovich-james-gunn-fired_us_5b5265cce4b0fd5c73c570ac

And "many on the left" are not supporting James Gunn as you claim.. its only a few of the actors who worked with him... Disney promptly fired him and criticized him.. Gunn also apologised .. compare this with what right wing imbeciles do.. Roy Moore almost got elected and never apologised... Trumpi, the rapist, is the President after having said "grab them by the pussy"... while the left has a lot of problems , its nothing like the right when it comes to hypocrisy and idiocracy.. the right wins it hands down... here is a brilliant example of right wing lunacy...

https://www.huffingtonpost.in/entry/rep-jason-spencer-screams-n-word-brandishes-bare-butt-on-who-is-america_us_5b5545b1e4b0de86f48e5a5e

1:58 AM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

@Tom

I also appreciate the 'perfectionism' paper. But I'm also afraid we ain't seen nothing yet.

Can you imagine what things will be like when life and death in the economy is decided by chatbot interview? At that point, young people would be sick if they *didn't* suffer from some kind of mental breakdown.

This kind of procrustean perfectionism is a subtle trick Nietzsche may appreciate. America is the ultimate seat of nihilism - a land of no values - so you cover up this ontological fact by a kind of social facade. Make the whole culture *seem* obsessed with ultra high standards even when, spiritually, it's all slums and cheap wine.

Thus nihilism is, completely unsuccessfully, revalued into technical proficiency and 'professionalism'.

The fact that you are doing nothing can be best covered up by doing this nothing in an extremely exacting way.

3:32 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

George-

To my knowledge, Trump never raped anyone.

mb

10:07 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

Why not after all?
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/jul/23/twaddle-librarians-respond-to-suggestion-amazon-should-replace-libraries

10:24 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wallowing in b.s.:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/23/ted-talk-smugness-presenters-embarrassing

Progs refuse to learn anything:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/23/liberals-donald-trump-support

mb

10:26 AM  
Anonymous Cos said...

Hi George Carlin. I clearly stated that I did not know anything about this Cernovitch fellow. Still, even if he is as vile as you and huffington post ( hardly a balanced source) good on him for bringing to light the disgusting statements by this fellow Gunn. If a heinous act is brought to light it need not be done by a saint as there are fairly few of these around. As for a few people supporting this person who enjoys making light of abusing children ( in horrific detail), some 150 thousand people have signed a petition to reinstate him. Such is life in America. I do not take political sides, but have to differ on you based on some observation ( personal, historocal) that american society as a whoke is sick but the deeper pathologies seem to emanate from the left lately ( the anger of their queen defeated has made them a bit psychotic. As an aside and with respect, invective rarely wins the day, detachment and viewing things dispassionately help as does a bit of humor. In this MB's example is instructive

11:35 AM  
Anonymous Nan said...

https://www.thestranger.com/slog/2018/07/03/28638616/america-love-it-or-leave-it

Nice check list on whether to jump ship

11:42 AM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

WAFERS-respectfully ask for input.

Have a usa-er "friend" who states that it (life, community, work, etc...) is basically the same whereever you go, and that all the bks I reference and ask them to read is just "academic" (eye roll), and that the jury's out on what other countries may be really like etc...I was accused of being judgmental and don't know their real friends even though they admit to being not their authentic self around their friends b/c of being ostracized.

The person stated---"Other folks seem to love it (us), incl. my European friends."
I said----either you get it, or not. usa-friendships are mostly a sham (just mutual tummy rubs and "opportunity" ($) talk). What person would want (sans folks fleeing pogroms) to come to a empire that stands for nothing other than $, hyper-consumerism, and endless imperialism unless they're empty, broken, and soulless?

The person left very angrily and have not talked since.

What is the most appropriate response for dealing w/usa-ers as have T-2yrs until am out of this cesspool empire? Thks WAFERS.


12:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike-

That's an easy one: urine! Seriously: yr chances of persuading Americans regarding reality is roughly negative infinity. Just let the poor shmuck go his own way, while u concéntrate on getting out. For yr bathrm mirror post-it:

TURKEYS NEVER WAKE UP

mb

12:54 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

COS, you cannot be serious in calling the ghastly Mrs. Clinton the "queen of the left." She's no more a leftist than was Marie Antoinette. I've seen a bit of railing against some amorphous "left" on this site, but the criticisms seem no more cogent that some John Kennedy Toole character warning about Comm'nists. People outside the USA don't see a left in that country. There's a right wing, and then there's an extreme, mentally-damaged right wing.

On another note, there's a disturbing trend in Canada that reflects our relentless cultural colonisation by the USA. Sure, we've always been inundated by your pop culture, but this is more insidious. Some people here now pronounce the letter "Z" as "zee," and not as "zed," the way God intended.

Wafers, I beseech you, please do us a favour and speed the end of the USA before it drags the rest of us down with it.

2:07 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Trump at Montana rally: "Democrats want anarchy"


https://www.cbsnews.com/news/trump-holds-rally-in-montana-live-stream/

2:41 PM  
Anonymous Ina B said...

Dr. Berman and all,

Do you have any suggestions for films or novels that embody the "wafer" mindset?

2:49 PM  
Anonymous Blah said...

Beware the radical lefty deconstructionists:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s51a1otWFp4

2:57 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Stupid is as stupid does.

The cable channel TruTV will be premiering a new game show later this month. Entitled “Paid Off,” it presents three students competing to win money, with the winner having (insert appropriate cis-gendered or sexually ambiguous possessive pronoun here) student debt paid off in full. Losers can still take home money, along with the obligatory parting gifts.

It is estimated that 44 million borrowers owe some $1.5 trillion in student loan debt.

Consult your local listings.

https://www.chronicle.com/article/Student-Debt-Gets-the/243965

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@DioGenes,

I agree, things are only going to get worse. Your comment about chatbot interviews in the future is dead on. As if looking for a job was not stressful enough already it is becoming increasingly dehumanized by technology. Now you are lucky if you can get to the point where you actually talk to a human. Society is becoming increasingly inhuman so it is not strange that people react badly and suffer from so many mental and physical problems.

I think you are also correct about how our culture hides its dark underbelly through a facade of technical proficiency. We are constantly bombarded with talk about how high tech will save us yet we cannot even fix our sewage problems.

http://www.governing.com/topics/transportation-infrastructure/gov-alabama-hookworm-sewage.html

In the next 10-20 years America will probably become a full-blown cyberpunk dystopia.

4:50 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

@COS/George C--Cernovich was at it again, digging up old twits from "comedian" and Russiagate conspiracy theorist Michael Ian Black. I'd like to know in which universe this is considered funny, because I never want to go there: "Some lady just changed her baby boy's diaper right in front if everybody at the gate. Unimpressive penis." The fact is, these most bad behavior by the elites is only uncovered by elites of the other stupid political tribe, because practicing truly independent journalism is nearly impossible these days if you demand certain luxuries like: 3 meals a day, a roof over your head, access to medical care, that kind of thing.

Meanwhile, the excellent leftist blogger Sardonicky makes a strong case that the best Trump comparison among previous presidents is actually Harry Truman: "The Truman Doctrine divided the world into two realms of good (USA! USA!) and evil (RussiaRussiaRussia!) in the immediate aftermath of World War II. Truman combined the worst aspects of modern-day Trumpian paranoid authoritarianism with contemporary Democratic scare-mongering over a manufactured (threat) solely in order to sell a war-weary public on the Cold War, and later, the hot war against the Chinese/Russian coalition in Korea."

5:14 PM  
Anonymous Francois said...

Stormy Daniels is getting a divorce, so she will have more time to lead the revolution Chris Hedges keeps blathering on about.

5:43 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Just listened to a radio interview w/author and court historian Jon Meacham about how we have been through worse, and that we're gonna "pull out" of the situation the US finds itself in because Americans can/will always find the better angels of our nature. Don' make me laugh! Jesus, what planet does Mr. Meacham live on? Uranus? I tell ya, I couldn't stop laughing as he was pimpin' his historical bullshit... All this stuff is simply whistling the past the graveyard, it seems to me. Not once did this joker raise the issue of, say, income inequality, or the fact that a massive segment of the population has been simply hollowed out and left behind, forgotten, and despised by their own government. And what have these folks been doing for the past few decades? Building arsenals, that's what. These folks have been arming themselves to the the teeth for war on American streets. This is our future. We're basically imploding, and have been for some time now. Very shortly the entire country will be up for grabs.

Miles

ps: Where's the fucking Tylenol?

9:41 PM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

MB - Sorry, I did not mean rapist in the literal sense. It was to highlight the numerous sexual assault and rape allegations against him.

https://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-rape-sexual-assault-minor-wife-business-victims-roy-moore-713531

COS - Don't know why you got the impression that I am trying to win an argument by being invective. I am not trying to argue or win anything. When it comes to Trump, natural hatred comes out. I have stopped arguing with Trump and "USA is wonderful" supporters long back. Trump has said things that no politician has and done all the crap that any politician has before him. Stuff like "Mexicans are rapists", "Muslims are terrorists and celebrated 9/11", "black athletes kneeling are sons of bitches", "nazis as some fine people on both sides", "separating kids from parents and caging them", "saying disgusting things about women", "pervert behavior like walking into changing room of Miss World contestants", "some African countries are shitholes", "media is enemy of people except Fox News", "mocking disabled reporter", "encouraging violence at his rallies", "birtherism conspiracy", "childish name calling", "corrupt business dealings" and the list goes on. Even I don't support any side, but my utmost hatred is reserved for Trump above everyone. And as this writer suggests "owning the libs" seems to be the only goal of the right nowadays.

https://www.redstate.com/kimberly_ross/2018/07/22/trump-era-dumb-conservatism-owning-the-libs-goal/

2:52 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

A spot-on diagnosis of American crassness:

https://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/heres-why-trumps-crassness-isnt-just-offensive-it-marks-disturbing-turn-american

The author has more hope than I do about turning it around, but the article is on-target otherwise. The problem is that the positive voices he mentions have always been too few & there are fewer still these days. When a majority of society is proud of its crassness & flaunts it at every opportunity, it's all over. Really, isn't this simply an outright rejection of maturity? Of the very idea of civilized life?

8:55 AM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Didn't think that Paul Craig Roberts could get more depressed about the fate of the US but he can and with good reason. Part of the self-destructive behavior of middle age white non-college men and women even of 25-34 year olds is, I think, an unconscious realization that they are screwed! Robotics are no more going to be the savior than cars or cell phones are. And PCR is right - no revolution is coming anywhere in the 'developed' world.

https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2018/07/23/more-lies-from-the-corrupt-elite/

9:44 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

George-

But in a declinist world, all of those things are *good*! You need to start loving Trump (I'm serious).

Ina-

https://www.amazon.com/Are-There-Yet-Morris-Berman/dp/1635610567/ref=sr_1_11?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1532441808&sr=1-11&keywords=are+we+there+yet

Films: "Anesthesia"; "Our Brand Is Crisis"

mb

10:19 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

@Ina, watched a great Wafer movie last night, albeit not recent (1995): "Safe" with Julianne Moore

11:11 AM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

@Tom Servo

A friend of mine came up with this absurd little Platonic dialgoue to illustrate the point.

Socrates: And tell me, are things good because they are beautiful or are they beautiful because they are good? And what is beauty? And what is justice? And is goodness knowable?

Steve Jobs: Umm... Yeah, whatever. Here's an iPhone.

What tech really does is surpress our specifically mammalian traits. It's no accident Twitter ends up looking like an insect hive mind. What passes for communication online is like an overloaded limbic system flashing lights and chirping tweets in a new kind of anti-communication.

11:52 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Has anyone seen Sacha Baron Cohen's "Who is America?" I wasn't a fan of "Borat," because I thought it stirred up anti-Muslim feelings soon after 9/11, hence I've never been a Cohen fan, but this show sometimes seems like the work of a genius.

How is Cohen able to make his "guests" perform the way they do? He had Dick Cheney autograph a waterboard bottle, a Georgia office-holding politician bare his buttocks and run around shouting "nigger nigger nigger!," and a TV celebrity make an infomercial to send money to train child soldiers. His bit with the townsfolk where he played the ultra-prog that everyone here hates, trying to get them to choose between which mosque should be built, was brilliant.

How does Cohen get away with this?

1:16 PM  
Anonymous Paula said...

I saw an interview with (I think) a former head of the NSA a few years ago: "Twenty years ago, if we'd tried to pass a law requiring people to tell us where they were, what they were interested in and who they were talking to, there would have been riots. Thanks, Apple."


https://aeon.co/ideas/orwell-knew-we-willingly-buy-the-screens-that-are-used-against-us

1:59 PM  
Blogger Chairface Chippendale said...

@Mike R., It was a very hard-won lesson for me: book recommendations are never taken seriously, just like every other kind of encouragement to think outside the consensus. Of course, kids are a different story and theoretically COULD be shown the light, but every nano-second they’re being actively seduced by a chirpy and multifaceted assault on their limbic systems (avoid being King Cnut fighting that tide). I’ve lent out hundreds of great books. They do not get read. Rarely, when they have been, they’ve made a hollow “thonk” sound.

Make non-hustling, non-US friends. Wafers are best. Protect yourself from coworkers & neighbors.

With Amurican family members, ugh, it’s really tough. I don’t have many worthwhile insights. Loved ones and close friends have access to your heart and other sensitive bits: beware, be philosophical, be resilient, but especially, beware.

@Ina B, While it depends upon your view of wafer “mindset”, Kafka is great. Also Vonnegut, Oscar Wilde and Primo Levi.

4:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wahrheit-

God, what a sad, sick, bitter fuck you are. This is how you spend yr time, eh? Talk abt the walking wounded. Anyway, I won't be rdg any future messages from you, but you can keep writing in, as I guess you don't have much of a life to speak of. You poor bastard. As I've said repeatedly, there is so much poison out there. Whom do you think it hurts, finally?

mb

4:32 PM  
Anonymous Pete Christen said...

Every day that Trumputin is in office eats away at the illusion that the US is a functioning democracy. In time, the illusion will be fully chewed up and digested, leaving just a pile of stinky poo. People in Europe see what's coming. Even a few people in America are starting to see it. But WAFers saw it long ago.

4:33 PM  
Anonymous COS said...

MB,

It is interesting that persons persist in posting nasty notes. There are plenty of nasty people but many are indeed "triggered" by news media and social media and then there are garden variety frail egos who in you and in Wafers see people who do not share their particular hallucination of how the world is along with a hint of the realization (usually suppressed) that they have led a meaningless life, they have shit in their head and have squandered years upon years...

George Carlin,

One is not invective, one uses invective. I don't like Trump much either. However will note that most of the quotes you cite are actually summaries of what some journalist thought he said or whishes he said--he did not say most of those things (note I said most) and many of these are taken out of context and seem to be of the left center ezine talking point variety--inaccurate media talking points need not be used to express your displeasure at President Trump. I don't think it matters one wit who (or what) won in 2016. I do think it matters that we all do our best to keep our minds as free as possible from media manipulation and keeping us angry and confused.

All: I found this relevant even for discussions here: https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2018/07/reader-coping-strategies-engaging-committed-liberals.html

5:33 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Thank you Dr. Berman and WAFER Chairface for the critical input re: friends, family etc..that are embedded in the BS. The person in qsn is close to me. It never ceases to amaze me that regardless of how much evidence, historical background, analysis, etc...they obturately REFUSE to acknowledge reality, nor entertain a different way of thinking abt something. (usa-ers can look reality in the eye and deny it...Keillor). Just today--a homeless person with a can carriage and 2 usa flags prominently displayed. Wild.

It is a bizarre Stockholm syndrome.

WAFER G'Bong--re: Cohen--it's a sad commentary on what we already know. Loved the GA congressman screaming -the N word, and him pretending to be Chinese (using Japanese greetings?!). Could you imagine him discussing Camus, Bartok, Steve Reich, etc...Anytime too tired to study my soon to be adopted country's language/culture--I just watch that clip, and it's like 3 shots of espresso.

What a bunch of fucking sad clowns, usa-ers were.

5:43 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

@al-Q--in regards to the American "left," personally I break them into 3 categories with their percentages of the total population in parentheses:

1). Liberals (49.9%)--these are the mainstream Democrats and hard core Botoxface supporters. They are virtually indistinguishable from mainstream Republicans save for their emphasis on bullshit identity politics. They might blabber on about social justice, but when push comes to shove are absolutely unwilling to give up any of their many material luxuries.

2) Progressives (49.9%)--these people who really believe that Bernie Sanders could "save" America. Mostly their anger is fueled not by social inequality itself, but by the realization that they are never going to enjoy the same luxuries their parents did. I used to feel some solidarity with them before they started running around tearing down old statues, enforcing strict university speech codes and calling me evil because of my gender and the color of my skin.

3) Leftists (.2%, if that)--these are people who recognize that true "resistance" is ALWAYS class based and that identity politics is a tool of the powerful to keep the workers divided and at each other's throats. This is what I was before realizing it was all hopeless and becoming a declinist.

5:51 PM  
Anonymous Artemus Gordon said...

@ Michael Burgess

You are correct. Robots and AI will not be the saviors. I ask people all the time to think about our culture of punishment and cruelty and then about how robots and AI might be used. If high end robots real do come along they will not be here for our benefit in any way. They will be here to keep us in line. End of story. They will be used in situations where a human might have second thoughts about the inhumane order they just received. No problem for a robot.

As a long time science fiction fan, I used to dream about robots, space ships and such. But anymore I abhor the idea, especially if developed in this country, because I now know none of it will be used to improve our lives in any way. Nope, it will be used to enslave and imprison us even further.

6:06 PM  
Anonymous Anjin-San said...

Ours is essentially a tragic age, so we refuse to take it tragically. The cataclysm has happened, we are among the ruins, we start to build up new little habitats, to have new little hopes. It is rather hard work: there is now no smooth road into the future: but we go round, or scramble over the obstacles. We’ve got to live, no matter how many skies have fallen. – D. H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley’s Lover

The sky isn't falling... but it certainly appears to be burning up.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/07/23/world/global-heatwaves-climate-change-wxc/index.html

Does Trump really matter in a world on fire...





6:39 PM  
Anonymous Zarathustra said...

Ina B, I think you could start with "Breakfast of Champions" by Kurt Vonnegut if you are looking for a "Wafer" novel.

7:42 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Below is a very Waferesque article from Johan Galtung's website. Much of what the author discusses has been discussed here. The author makes the case that the "pie is rotten" (which MLK Jr understood) or that the the problem is structural and the solution must be a completely different structure.

https://www.transcend.org/tms/2018/07/what-should-we-do-now/

Best Wishes,
Himanshu

9:02 PM  
Anonymous WuduFugel said...

George, for the most part it is pointless to argue, because Trump's support is not really based on factual reality. He's the penultimate American - a true fantasy president. He can't string together two coherent sentences on any policy matter but he's a tough-talkin' business man and that's what we need! The redstate essay you linked aims at the truth - that the core of Trump's support is hatred towards a vaguely defined "liberal society", and anything it supports - universal healthcare, social services, political-correctness, whatever. I'm anti-PC myself, but in Trump-world all these things get lumped together whether it makes sense to do so or not.

Chairface, I've seen the same thing with books. Recently I let a friend at work, someone I considered quite thoughtful, borrow my copy of Junichiro Tanizaki's In Praise of Shadows- but she returned it saying she couldn't get through it, it was too boring. I think these days you have to look to reading groups or go online for this sort of thing. I've found most of my neighbors / coworkers / friends are not interested.

9:06 PM  
Anonymous Millennial Realist said...

It's always great to read an outsider's perspective of the U.S.:
https://www.businessinsider.com/17-cultural-clashes-this-european-had-in-america-2017-6?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=auddev-test180

^^To sum it up, Americans are way too sensitive, fake (phony & worthless smiles, inauthentic, endless positivity), hustlers (whether it's a waitress trying to get a tip, stores not factoring in the tax into the price until checkout, or cheesy in-your face marketing), wasteful consumers, ignorant of other countries, and always in a hurry. The U.S. also has insane ID laws (TSA-style ID checks in order to drink), in-your face religious nutjobs, and corporations that reign supreme over small businesses. And last but not least, it's the LEAST pedestrian friendly country on Earth (mostly designed for cars and not people). Did I forget to mention the endless in-your face advertising?

I recently watched a documentary titled "The China Hustle." Basically, it's predicting the next bubble burst due to overvalued U.S.-listed Chinese companies on the stock exchange. And like the crash of '08, Congress is aware of this and doing NOTHING! To make matters worse, the U.S. can't prosecute these shady operations in China. Once again, greed & hustling will continue our demise. What's even more hilarious (and so typically American) is that the main whistleblower is short selling these stocks! You can't make this shit up: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/29/movies/the-china-hustle-review.html

11:44 PM  
Anonymous cubeangel said...

Dr. B.

This is a speech by Bill Williomson from the Rampage Trilogy by Uwe Boll. What do you think?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYPHa0qbkS0

1:36 AM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

MB - Haha I am with you on that, totally *love* Trumpi. If I was in US, would have started the real revolution to get Elections suspended until Trumpi wishes to rule...eff Chris Hedges and his stupid revolutions..

Mike R - Don't argue with USA-ers, as MB says, Turkeys wont wake up. When it comes to immigrants, they will never admit their country and USA are same. They will argue how beautiful USA is and how bad life in their countries is. They cannot accept that life sucks in US because that would be hypocrisy, as then natural question comes is why don't they go back if they believe life is same in their own country. Even those who criticise US are told to go back to their country if they don't like it in the greatest country on Earth. They are all addicted to greed and wont listen to anything you say. They will suck it up and die in US as long as they can hustle and have hope of becoming a billionaire some day.

This is pure evil:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5987507/Baby-boy-kidnapped-set-fire-left-dead-railroad-tracks.html

Society on the brink:
https://www.vox.com/identities/2018/7/23/17602312/stand-your-ground-florida-michael-drejka-markeis-mcglockton

6:19 AM  
Anonymous BrotherMaynard said...

Greetings Wafers,
I'm pleased to report that I have escaped the nuthouse aka Trumplandia. It wasn't easy (harder than I thought actually ) but totally worth it.
There is a piece of mind that comes from knowing you won't get shot at a cafe or that a trip to the hospital won't bankrupt you. It's also a relief to know that looking all around you at a cafe or street fair that there is more to live than work or 'achievement' but simple living among neighbours, friends, and family. You work to live, not live to work.
I'll write more when I have more time but will say this: you give up nothing when you leave the USA and all its false promises. A real and better life awaits you once you lose the 'hustle' and can finally focus on the important things in your (very short) life.
Peace and love to all,
BrotherMaynard

9:04 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

Good read on Dark Mountain:
https://dark-mountain.net/on-landscapes-and-specific-lives/

11:40 AM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

Greetings, Wafers everywhere, here are the latest signs of decline in a Cascadia of pummeling, potshots, and poverty:

The mother of a sixth grade female basketball player has been charged with felonious assault over a December 2017 incident at a Catholic girls basketball game in the Seattle burb of Kent where the mother ran out on the court and strangled an opponent player to the point of near unconsciousness, only stopping with the victim’s mom rushed out on the floor and slugged the attacking mom to the floor:

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/kent-woman-charged-with-assaulting-girl-11-at-basketball-game/

Meanwhile, early morning highway mayhem occurred Tuesday as a 20-year old active duty military male took potshots with a rifle at cars waiting at 3:42 a.m. on an approach lane for the Hood Canal bridge to reopen after routine maintenance. The shooter managed to graze one motorist with a bullet while missing others before apparently taking his own life. A case of “existential strain”?

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/driver-in-kitsap-county-shoots-at-surrounding-cars-before-killing-himself/

And finally, a Seattle Times article reported on the efforts of the school district of Vancouver, WA, across the river from Portland, to “rally” (U-S-A rah rah!) in funding “family community resource centers” at grade schools like Hazel Dell Elementary where two-thirds of the grade schoolers either live in poverty or are homeless. Two-thirds!

https://www.seattletimes.com/education-lab/as-need-soars-schools-rally-behind-families-in-vancouver-wash-and-other-cities-take-notice/

11:50 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jack-

All gd (declinist) news. But pls watch length.

Bro-

Arriba! Felicidades! I'm so happy 4u.

mb

12:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: I am aware that Johnny Yuma was a rebel; but was he a Wafer? This is the crucial question of our times.

12:26 PM  
Anonymous David G. said...

@Paula: Your article about the coercion of tech and the coming lack of choice expresses one of my greatest fears of the next decade or two. I have not yet been coerced into buying a smartphone, but literally everyone these days has one, including all of my family and friends. It astounds me how people are so seduced by these things, apparently without the slightest consideration of their wider psychological, societal, and environmental impacts. Discussing this topic is completely taboo, and if the subject does happen to come up, my concerns are met with polite silence, perhaps condescending smiles and nods, and a quick change of subject. So, it is completely hopeless to think that there will be any retreat or backlash from smartphones -- our fate is sealed.

Global warming is likewise just as sealed-in, as is, of course, the demise of the US.

I just retired from a long career. I am financially comfortable, fortunately, but I am afraid the various dystopias are going to ruin hopes of a pleasant retirement. My best option is to move to Canada in a few years, following younger son, who recently emigrated and lives in Vancouver. It's not far away, but it would be better than remaining in the US.

12:31 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

I’ve been watching some old black and white movies from the 40’s over the last few days, some real classics, and it profoundly strikes me just how much we have lost as a culture and civilization over these last 60 - 70 years.....the movies in those days were VERY Dialogue-Heavy, and people had excellent vocabularies, and today’s movies hardly have any dialogue, only ACTION and MAYHEM, and if there is any dialogue it’s so simplistic and sophomoric.....and the way the people dressed and carried themselves in the old movies was so elegant, fashionable, and sophisticated, and today’s movies show people looking like homeless bums. We’ve lost so much.

12:44 PM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Realist: Funny article and true.

Bro: Well done, when you have time write something up on how you did it!

1:06 PM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

Re: The difficulty of telling what is the American 'left', if anything at all

“When Political Labels Become Meaningless”

https://medium.com/@hardlensmedia/when-political-labels-become-meaningless-4377afd1aaa1

Al-Q, Americans speak a kind of pidgin English that needs to be laboriously translated into English itself.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pidgin

Funny how pidgin languages are said to arise under very limited circumstances of cultural interaction, like commerce. American English is like a national pidgin without any fixed or meaningful concepts. Language is used only a kind of confused, impressionistic fashion aimed at communicating commerce, politics, and pop culture.

3:49 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

I gave up sharing my thoughts with nearly everyone prob in h.s. The Worst thing about this (non) system is I ended up blaming myself for everything 'what's wrong with me?' The recriminations get quite brutal until a therapist tells you you're depressed and makes you do cognitive behavioral exercises aimed at dislodging thoughts and beliefs that are correct and marrow deep (for which w/o MB there is little proof) 'because they're distorted.' I can talk to my mom who is proto Wafer she's always felt, like me, that the matrix is real and not our friend. My labor union dad was pretty aware as well when he was with us. This blog is the first and only place where I have been able to express my honest thoughts w/o severe criticism, or hitting that raw nerve in people who know it's all shit but have too much invested to admit it - an example would be a grieving gold star family. My presence by itself is enough to make such people rage.
A book recommendation: Miss Lonely Hearts and The Day of the Locust by Nathaniel West. I just started re-reading it and beginning page one it's heartbreaking.

5:34 PM  
Blogger Bullshevik said...

Jack Lattemann,
Your story reminded me of an incident that occurred at a high school where I taught for one year before losing my job to budget cuts. (This happened 2 years before I taught there.) A math teacher told me that while she was on the other side of the classroom helping other students with some problems, one of her students put a classmate into a choke hold until that student passed out and hit his head on the floor. She was put on administrative leave while the incident was investigated and was lucky not to lose her job. The school - and teacher- was lucky not to be sued. But get this: the student was only suspended for a few days, and after this incident allowed to play on the football and basketball teams! No psych eval ordered, nothing. I had this young man in one of my classes; by then he was a senior, and even before I heard the story about him I felt there was something wrong with him and to be honest I was afraid of him. And he was still playing football...

5:45 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Brody Young, 25, arrested for performing jumping jacks while naked at a Nashville McDonald's restaurant:

https://www.wkrn.com/news/police-naked-man-found-doing-jumping-jacks-in-restroom-of-nashville-mcdonald-s/1319811768

Miles

ps: T-Shirt idea:

America: A Nation of Flap Jacks

7:53 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

@George C--this sentence from that article about the baby killing you posted describing the relationship between the mother and the killer got me curious because it was obvious something wasn't adding up: "It is unclear if Smith and Hanna Barker knew each other personally, but the pair are friends on Facebook." So I did a little more digging, and surprise! surprise! the story is even more horrific than as originally reported: Natchitoches baby's mother charged in his death. You read that right, the mother arranged to have her own six-month-old baby burned to death.

@BrotherM--congrats! Wish I was in a position to do the same.

So, just how much of a racist douchebag do you have to be to exit off the Interstate just so you can follow a black man to his house in order to call him the n-word? And just how much of an idiot do you have to be to do so in a company van that has the company name plastered right on the side?

10:41 PM  
Anonymous Kevin said...

The USA is ruined beyond recall, its people hopelessly indoctrinated by nonsense, and spiritually empty.

But according to writer and reporter Andre Vltchek, this is true of the west as a whole. He thinks Western Europe in particular is just as bad if not worse: that it is devoted to nihilism, creatively impotent, lacking the intellectual courage its thinkers (such as Jean Paul Sartre) may once have had, and - like the United States - profoundly selfish. Being a Marxist, he thinks of Europe as the wellspring of genocidal Western imperialism.

So - is he right? I myself am not sure. What do Wafers think? The question has some practical relevance for me, because it may affect my choice: whether to relocate to Latin America or, say, Spain.

12:47 AM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@Dr. Berman,

Well, Nick Adams did go to Japan to make movies later in his career, including a few Godzilla films, and his last movie was "Los Asesinos" which was made in Mexico. Maybe he was a Wafer!

@DioGenes,

Yes Twitter is terrible. I don't know how people even keep track of all the drama that goes down there but apparently some people do it. I think Americans are addicted to drama and social media has really facilitated that. I suppose it helps Americans feel alive. In that sense I wonder if Americans love having Trump in the White House because his presidency is a non-stop drama machine. Progs and conservatives can take to the Twitterverse and attack each other to their heart's content!

3:19 AM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Let me present a little bit of relief from struggling to uphold WAFerism and NMIhood in this crazy f-ed up country full of trollfoons and other assorted asshats:

https://www.seriouseats.com/2018/07/guide-to-jewish-deli-food.html

oh, and P.S. - the country is f-ed up: https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/07/26/when-worse-is-the-enemy-of-bad/

8:48 AM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

Wudu - Agree with you, I gave up arguing long back. I tried my best to understand the issues though, at one point I used to regularly read breitbart, drudgereport, etc and listen to geniuses like Sean Hannity, Alex Jones, Ann Coulter, Tomi Lahren, Milo, Richard Spencer, etc. Ended up learning nothing and it might have caused some brain damage. But eventually as MB says you need to start enjoying it.

Bro - Congrats on the move !! Happy for you , may we know where you moved to ?

Myths that Wafers already know of , but someone needs to tell him Umrika has already collapsed....

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-society-would-collapse-if-it-werent-for-these-8-myths/

8:56 AM  
Anonymous Jody said...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1177_B.C.:_The_Year_Civilization_Collapsed

1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric Cline.

Professor, have you ever compared Professor Cline's work to your own? Looks terribly interesting. I'm starting the book this week.

10:42 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

David G.-

Check out "Super Sad True Love Story," by Gary Shteyngart. Also note that Vancouver is socially and emotionally very cold. In my experience, not a high-contact society. Fun to visit, tho.

mb

11:12 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Then there's this:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/26/communists-capitalism-stalinism-economic-model

11:21 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

jjarden, I agree with you about classic films. On rare occasion, something with real dialogue & real human beings gets made today, but not too often. You might want to check out late 1950s/early 1960s TV dramas, such as Naked City, Route 66, The Defenders, for thoughtful shows about ideas, issues, genuine human feelings, all told in a gripping way. No doubt they'd be called too slow & too talky today. Elitist intellectualism!

Tom Servo, I see people utterly absorbed in their devices everywhere, even at funeral services. Groups of people sit down to dinner in a lovely restaurant & within a few seconds, every face is turned downward, nose in device. It's getting rare to see people actually talking on those phones, too; texting is preferred. The less contact with any reminder of flesh & blood, the better, or so it seems. What this portends for even the most tenuous notion of community or human contact is frightening to contemplate. I suspect we'll live to see people preferring AI friends & lovers to actual people. They'll be so much more real than people, right? Hell, it's happening now!

12:28 PM  
Blogger Kashe Varnishke said...

Dr. Berman - I have a question that has nagged at me for a while. Why is it that most European countries adopted more socialist models of governance and economy after WWII as opposed to the U.S. model of hyper-capitalism and competition? Do those countries have a more ingrained idea of "the commons" perhaps due to a long history of Catholicism and/or traditional culture? I'd like your take on the matter. Thanks much.

12:45 PM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

MB, Wafers,

Not sure if you've followed the news from across the pond, but there's a "little" heat wave in Europe at the moment to say the least. i.e. Greek and Swedish fires. Temperatures have been around 30/35 degrees Celsius in much of the Old Continent, so you can imagine how people must feel like in their commute back to work squeezed between smelly armpits and no aircon in the subway. I am lucky to live in the countryside where temperatures are cooler, but whenever I commute to Paris and see the literal HELL that it is living in a big overcrowded city like this right now, it actually gives me a kick. I feel that a heatwave is *precisely* what we need to reach a breaking point. For people to throw the tantrum they've been holding up for years at everyone. For that road rage (replace "road" by any other type of rage people feel) to finally explode. For shit to break loose.

Bad is good! O&D!!

Kanye

2:13 PM  
Anonymous Navee said...

"By 1979, Maoist China had a life expectancy of 68 years, more than 14 years longer than that of capitalist India."

‘Capitalist.' 'India.’ ????


MB, what do you make of the author of the guardian article, Owen Jones? the piece, like the riff on the 25-30 million death toll of Great Leap Forwards, was somehow an exercise in breaking eggs to make omlettes. Wow!

Do you get the same impression?

2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anjin-San said...

I have just started regularly reading Micheal Harriot at The Root.

This one says it all:

https://www.theroot.com/donald-trump-is-americas-greatest-president-1827901237

And this one is damn good too.

https://www.theroot.com/white-people-are-right-they-built-this-country-1827688632

5:31 PM  
Anonymous Geoffrey said...

A controversial opinion for our blog group tonight --

Bright college students can learn more about human nature from reading Henry James' three deepest novels (The Wings of the Dove (1902), The Ambassadors (1903), and The Golden Bowl (1904)) than from majoring in psychology at most universities.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous Michael Waters said...

Carl is 143 yrs Jung on this day ;)

12:05 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

A story about baby pummeling to go along with yesterday's story about baby burning: during her sentencing hearing at which she received 8 years in the pokey for beating the shit out of her infant daughter, Michela Sousa actually had the gall to argue for leniency by claiming she was entering a "faith based" treatment program, and that her child would be better off with her than the gay couple who is now fostering it because she had been attempting to raise the child through a "life of God" and that the men could not provide the parenting direction she could.

Meanwhile, in another case of "banking while black," two Wells Fargo-employed racist douchebags refused to cash a $140 check for an elderly black woman, who was a retired probation officer and PhD holder, and called the cops on her even after the issuer of the check confirmed its legitimacy. Wells Fargo only exists as a going concern because it was handed tens of billions in bailout money by douchebag Obama after its executives committed massive mortgage fraud that helped crash the economy. Wells Fargo also opened millions of accounts in the names of customers without their knowledge, all without a single employee or executive going to jail--also during Obama's presidency.

12:44 AM  
Anonymous George Carlin said...

Shouldnt we be reducing meat consumption ??

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/the-1-cause-of-climate-change-the-media-dont-mention/

https://howtobeastoic.wordpress.com/2018/07/17/stoics-should-be-vegetarian/amp/?

Bill Hicks -- Wow , dont know what to say. That mother deserves something worse than hell.

10:51 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

A civilization on the brink:

https://www.rt.com/usa/434402-mcdonalds-brawl-milkshake-customer/

Miles

2:52 PM  
Anonymous Zarathustra said...

Kevin, that Andre Vltchek bloke sounds like a real punk. If Europe is the "wellspring of genocidal Western imperialism," then don't move to Spain, which is part of Western Europe.

I suspect you may need a change in perspective, if you don't think it condescending for me to say so. No place is perfect, although most are definitely not so fucked up as the US.
I always say that you should not move out just to escape, but because somehow you are "invited" to a place you love. Maybe this is impractical and I am talking nonsense, so don't pay attention to me.

If you can afford it, travel around alone, yes, alone; that's the important bit.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jeff-

Time for McDonald's customers, and staff, to get weaponized! Every McDonald's needs to have a large banner mounted outside: FISTS ARE NOT ENOUGH!

Kashe-

Catholicism helped, I suspect, but then England isn't Catholic and opted for the NHS, welfare state, etc. (Also consider Scandanavia.) Remember that the US was born bourgeois; its entire history has been one of hustling. Countries w/a feudal history had a tradition of noblesse oblige, not a tradition of cowboys out on the frontier. There's a lot of kindness in Europe; very little of it in America. Americans get excited by besting the other guy. Europeans get excited by helping him. I recall rdg the platform of some Swedish party for 2004, it talked about how not everyone can compete at a high level, and we need to have policies to protect those with various debilities. The US reaction to this is "nanny state." The sheer violence of America is breathtaking.

mb

7:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

My idea of gd news:

https://money.cnn.com/2018/07/26/technology/business/facebook-stock-drop/index.html

I dunno why, but I'd like to invite Zuckershmuck to my house, take him out to the garden where I have a large stone wall, and beat his head against it for 20 mins. w/o interruption. Does this make me a bad person? (Obama and Botox Face are welcome to get in line.)

mb

7:49 PM  
Anonymous Italiana said...

MB & Wafers,

I am now reading "Discovering America As It Is", by Valdas Analauskas (recommended on this blog - I forget by whom, but thank you!), and, although it was written in 1999, it is spot on! And the statistics he cites, which were already dismal in 1999, are now so much worse. It's so clear the trajectory that America is on.

Anjin-San - those two articles are really spot on. He sees America for what it is - just like Analauskas.

MB - did you see the comments on that article in the Guardian you cited? (the one about Communism, Capitalism, Stalinism, etc). Mind blowing - basically the same thing - Capitalism is the best thing since sliced bread, blah, blah.

Meanwhile, we watched the lunar eclipse and Mars last night in our little village in Italy, with our Italian and British neighbors. Such a nice night, out with friends, helping each other out. We just love it here.

4:46 AM  
Blogger Kashe Varnishke said...

@Kevin, I like Vltchek but I think he exaggerates and/or doesn’t provide a balanced point of view in his writings. He is surely passionate. Imperialism and the desire to subjugate other countries and territories existed before Europe formed. If you are thinking of moving to another country I’d recommend visiting or living there for a month to get a feel for the reality of that environment.

1:33 PM  
Blogger Chairface Chippendale said...

@Italiana, I’m glad you’re enjoying the book by Valdas Analauskas. I knew Wafers wd like it. Back in the pre-Wafer days (dinosaur times?), there were fewer lodestars. We now have a better selection, this blog being our most subversive and groovy initiative since our gigantic Urine Ray malfunctioned and sunk off the eastern seaboard.

@All Wafers, No doubt you’ll recognize something quintessentially American in this anecdote. An acquaintance of mine had a book about achieving ‘happiness’, the kind that always seem to be among the bestsellers here, even when compared to other self-help crap. I couldn’t resist raising the subject by telling her what Werner Herzog answered when an interviewer asked him about what makes him the happiest. Herzog laughed and said, “I don’t care about this concept happiness. It’s a very American concept. Other things are more important.”

Completely oblivious this she replied by saying she "just wants to really crush this whole happiness thing”.

Yes. Americans want to, like, crush happiness.

I quickly left as I was trying not to vomit. And I don’t like to brag, but, I was really crushing not vomiting.

-CC

1:11 PM  

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