October 02, 2020

406

Well, Wafers: Trumpi has the virus, and is revealed to all and sundry to be a colossal shmuck. Except for his base: they'll find a way to spin this in his favor. And then that absurd "debate," which revealed to the world the complete dysfunction of the American empire (if other countries didn't know this already). Gore Vidal once remarked: "Stupidity excites me." Jesus, I dunno when I've been more excited. And now the election is a month away, which Trumpi may or may not win. Either way, Alexander Pope's words capture our situation now:

"Thy dread empire, Chaos! is restored/Light dies before thy uncreating word/Thy hand, great Anarch! lets the curtain fall/And universal darkness buries all.”

We have no future, amigos. How many times can we say it?

-mb

166 Comments:

Blogger futuroexpat said...

Ayúdame! ¿Me puedes recomendar cuatro o cinco lugares de refugio en México a donde puedo ir o huir dependiendo de las circunstancias? Gracias.

7:03 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

futuro-

Oaxaca.

mb

8:09 PM  
Anonymous D-Pressed said...

Your tax dollars at work

"Twenty minutes sufficed for the reading of the “gist” of the astonishing testimony of two witnesses, their identity protected as their lives may be in danger, who stated that the CIA, operating through Sheldon Adelson, planned to kidnap or poison Assange, bugged not only him but his lawyers, and burgled the offices of his Spanish lawyers Baltazar Garzon. This evidence went unchallenged and untested."

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2020/10/your-man-in-the-public-gallery-assange-hearing-day-21/

9:03 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

If trump dies will people drive around with Pence flags flappin from their pickups? - “guy is lucky to be alive”

https://krdo.com/news/2020/10/01/trump-supporter-waving-american-flag-in-pueblo-attacked-by-man-with-shovel/

10:17 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Every time I ride past my local trap house I think of these guys ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKFhK40wDjE

10:59 PM  
Anonymous willy robinson said...

@D-Pressed

I've been reading every day of Craig Murray's reports, and to try sum up the litany of injustice within the half-page rule would be impossible even for a master of Haiku. Assange will be extradited because while the request and charges are entirely political (expressly prohibited in the treaty between the two countries), from a British state point of view these are exactly our politics.

Living in Spain where justice is both glacial and utterly fucked up (citation 1: Bankia executives who launched it on the stock market and then published accounts showing 3.5 billion euros in losses get off scott free because their shenanagans fooled the regulators at the time. link: https://english.elpais.com/spanish_news/2020-09-29/ex-imf-chief-rodrigo-rato-acquitted-over-bankia-ipo-fiasco.html), it is indeed depressing to see what a miserable shitshow the UK has turned into.

Still nothing compared to the US though...

5:48 AM  
Anonymous Cherith Cutestory said...

-- Just finished reading Demi Moore's new autobiography. It's fun and she's had a crazy life (celeb bios are my guilty pleasure). The "confession culture" in America is repulsive. She talks about her childhood and how she used her flatulence as a weapon against her brother. Her cheating. People cheating on her. Her daughters not talking to her. Rehab. Everything about her traumatic moments (raped as a teen) and her intimate relationships. Many autobiographies are the same. Westerners, the Anglosphere especially, are shameless. They'll say everything and anything, nothing held back, no shame, letting out every bit of dirty laundry and secret. Here in Arab and Eastern societies in general there's no such thing, there's a lot of dignity, even in one's home. Sleeping naked is gross and weird. Usually no nudity even in one's home except for lovemaking. This modesty works to increase desire between spouses from my conversations with them. Also matches what Wendy Shalit said in her excellent book A Return to Modesty, i.e. that modesty inflames desire and mystique.

-- Re: a subreddit for Wafers, don't do it. Reddit's medium is counterproductive to dialog. And the ocean of users is enormously toxic.

11:33 AM  
Anonymous Pete Christen said...

My prediction: Mango Mussolini will die of Covid. His flag-draped coffin will be flown around the country, ceremoniously displayed at giant rallies where massive crowds scream and cry and demand revenge against those who killed the great hero-king (picture scenes like those in the movie Idiocrasy). The US senate, fearful of the angry mob, will try to appease them by appointing Don Junior emperor for life. Donny will immediately declare martial law. The American population will respond to this attack on their freedoms by hoarding toilet paper and Twinkies. Meanwhile the pandemic will spread mercilessly, killing all the Kardashians.

12:30 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Krystal Bell sounds like a full-on Wafer in this piece.

Krystal Ball: The Ugly Truth Is That Trump Is As American As Apple Pie

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_MFRgej5EI&list=PLLri3HDD8DQv1M8EQ2-BCakZHUV5zaBOR&index=2

"There is nothing and no-one more American than Donald Trump. He is the inevitable end [sic] result of the society that we have created here: a grotesque eruption of the foetid swamps of celebrity and consumerism..."[and it gets better]

12:32 PM  
Blogger Tim2 said...

Good afternoon Dr Berman and Wafers

If you would like to take a break from some
of the immediate doom and gloom posts perhaps
consider listening to the Useful Idiots interview
with Samuel Moyn. The discussion is entitled
RBG and the Supreme Court with Samuel Moyn.
Very enlightening perspective regarding a very
important event going forward and downwards.
Jump in at the 34 minute mark if interested.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQFcgVjuu2w

1:39 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

al-

Brilliant discourse, and rt on target. Note that she says *we* created this mess; it's not a case of elites imposing false consciousness on the populace (wh/is nevertheless true to a limited extent). We're back to George Carlin and where our leaders come from. Americans are trash, so Trump is trash. What else wd one expect?

mb



1:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Tim2-

We are doom, but hardly gloom. Getting the US off the world stage is a *positive* development. I'm quite upbeat about it, as are most of the nations of the world.

mb

2:32 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Adam Curtis interviewed about Trump & Liberal nihilism, the failure of Occupy to move beyond a turgid and uninspiring managerialism, and the failure of the left to provide a collectivist alternative to BAU; also Trump as the logical product of Americanism.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKFhK40wDjE

4:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

dermot-

Always translate acronyms, thank you. As for Occupy: a distant memory of an empty rebellion. What silly, silly people (Americans).

mb

4:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Unknown-

I don't post Unknowns. You need a real handle to participate in this discussion. Thank you.

mb

5:21 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Markus said...

Trump is exactly the kind of person more likely to die from COVID: old, male and obese. If he survives, what are the chances of him rethinking his COVID policies? According to the mainstream liberal press, there's reason to hope he'll change his mind about how dangerous COVID is. I find this laughable. Like most Americans, Trump can't apologize, admit he was wrong or rethink anything. Like most Americans, he's incapable of personal growth. All he'll do is become more of what he already is: a boorish, narcissistic joke.

I have a question for you, Dr. B. Are you aware of the Canadian neocon propagandist Jordan Peterson, and how popular is he with young people all across the Anglosphere? Might this suggest the entire Anglosphere will follow America into oblivion? The same social and moral chaos destroying America seems to be destroying the rest of the Anglosphere.

6:11 PM  
Anonymous Magni Ficent said...

Hi Wafers,

Some positive news! Trumpfoons held a mask-free rally in Staten Island to celebrate the Dear Leader and wish him well. What better way to honor the Leader of the Free World than by congregating in a small area without masks while a highly contagious disease spreads like wildfire? It was a truly beautiful display, the prevailing of freedom and the American Way over the dark forces of anarchism and low-income, dark-skinned Trump-haters who threaten to overtake the suburbs and fill them with pure Communism.

Now, all the Trumpfoons need to do is walk off a cliff carrying a Trump flag with Trump dressed as Rocky Balboa, and make sure they're recorded so they go viral, in order to please Dear Leader Trump. Anyone who is not willing to sacrifice their lives and risk contracting coronavirus to please the Dear Leader is an America-hating Communist who should probably return to Somalia or whatever shithole they came from.

If any WAFers have other ideas about how to honor our Dear Leader, please do share them.

https://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2020/10/03/hundreds-rally-for-president-trump-on-staten-island

6:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Magni-

There is more crap in American heads than there is in all the toilets of India. You may quote me on that. But it's some relief that for a while, Trumpi was holding off the forces of Communism and anarchy. ;-)

Nadine-

Every time I hear yr name, I think of Chuck Berry. :-)

Trump, of course, is not the problem; rather it's 'most Americans', as you pt out. Trumpism will certainly outlive Trump himself, and contribute heavily to our collapse.

As for Peterson, we had a lengthy discussion abt him on this blog abt a yr ago or so. You might wanna scroll back and read the comments. He's not entirely wrong (Robt Bly said similar things much earlier), but he is certainly a con artist. Is he still popular? Not much in the news anymore...

mb

7:10 PM  
Anonymous BH said...

There is a proverb in the Bible that states "As goeth the prince so goeth the people". Trump didnt appear out of a vacuum. Crappy leaders arise from among crappy people.

10:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

BH-

Check out my new book, "Douche Bag Nation."

mb

11:26 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Of Course she did...This is what Americans DO....


https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/03/us/kim-richardson-ebay-federal-prison-trnd/index.html

1:28 AM  
Anonymous Buddy Satva said...

Michael Moore's take on Mein Trumpf's Corona diagnosis as an elaborate ruse seems quite valid. As I see it, three outcomes are possible:

1) Trump transfers power to Pence who then pardons the orange psycho.

2) Mein Trumpf and others make "startling" recoveries and hence their arguments that the mortality figures due to Covid are inflated.

3) He goes to Russia for an experimental treatment. Mitch McConnell gives him 90 lbs of coke as a get-well gift. (Please read Nation artivle from 2014 on the cocaine seizure in Colobia on Mitch's in-laws' ship--but of course no civil forfeiture),

If the neon Fascist "recovers", it will be a national day of mourning and all flags should be burnt at half-mast.

3:53 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Unknown-

I don't post Unknowns. Pls use a real handle. Thank you.

mb

5:58 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Robert Reich's latest column in the Guardian- "Trump, Covid and empathy for the world's least empathetic man"
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/04/trump-covid-hospital-sympathy-decency

ends with this sentence: "What kind of society does the nation want: one based on decency and democracy, or on viciousness and raw power?"

Ha ha. Like that hasn't been answered by the daily lives of millions across the US.

Here's a good one, the subtle, quiet violence by committee approach so common in the US. Local School board knows for over a year that high school building has high PCBs levels in the air and should not be used by live humans. They wait until schools reopen in September to finally close school, AFTER students have already been going back to class (yes, under Covid-19, but we'll let that violence slide). To justify, board members keep mumbling that they have mentioned the PCBs in meetings. As if mentioning a problem absolves them of any responsibility to actually DO anything. Flynt water poisoning was not an aberration, it was standard practice.

https://vtdigger.org/2020/09/30/reckoning-with-an-unsafe-building-burlington-high-school-searches-for-a-new-space/

9:29 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

At the risk of my sounding like a broken record, here are Krystal and Saagar sounding like Wafers again. It's as if they read this blog and then come up with supporting evidence.

Krystal and Saagar: RECORD HIGH Number Of Americans Think Political Violence Is Justified

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjxMK7rySuU

By the way, I don't know anything about these two, or who they work for, but their videos keep coming up on my YouTube "Recommended" queue. Last night I watched the final episode of a Russian TV series on the Great War. I had never really seen the war from a Russian perspective before, so learned quite a bit. One thesis presented is that the Russians had everything going their way, and were on the verge of victory, then dissention at home undermined the country and they were thrown into chaos and disaster.

11:39 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Happy Karen Sunday, everybody. Let’s enjoy Episode 11 with some fresh new Karens at their best. LOL!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eEnyHrTK1rQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kiGMGB-LqM4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5hURyhPQCs&t=41s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaUqRg4i-rQ

11:40 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

al-

Note that the %s are roughly the same for folks of both political parties.

mb

12:19 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

In rural America, alcohol-related deaths increased 43% between 2006 and 2018, according to a new study. The alcohol-related death rate more than doubled for women.

https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2020-10-01/alcohol-linked-deaths-rise-sharply-in-rural-america

2:33 PM  
Blogger flanagle said...

If Donito Trumpolini actually bites the dust soon then our (probably very temporary) new First Lady will be a... Karen. This, during the 'Year of the Karen'. Would be wickedly funny of Fate to do that.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

flan-

IMO, the US cannot have too many Karens, whether in the W.H. or anywhere else. Salt of the earth, backbone of the 'Republic'.

mb

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkus said...

Al, It's pretty clear America's headed for another civil war. As clueless as they are, most Americans at least grasp this fact. Of course, they'll respond by doing that which makes civil war inevitable; they are unable and unwilling to compromise or deescalate.

Dr. B, you're right, Peterson is a con artist, although I never realized that until you pointed it out. He might claim his books are philosophical, but they are basically self-help manuals for right-wingers. Also, his obsession with (and passionate support of) "dominance hierarchies" seems quite fascist to me. The idea that society should consist of hierarchies based on raw power and domination is very brutal; it leaves no room for love, compassion or compromise. He also loves ruthless competition, and extolls it as something that toughens people and builds character. He never acknowledges how it destroys families and communities by causing people to turn on one another like rabid wolves. He doesn't realize that civilizations that eschew cooperation self-destruct, and peddles the same hyper-individualism that's tearing America to pieces. He also encourages men to be "dangerous", and for people to "develop their shadow selves" (as described by Jung) by basically being more aggressive. Not gonna lie, that last bit seems like sociopathic advice.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Talk about grasping at straws, the army revised their training manual. It now encourages “spiritual readiness,” napping, and of course mindfulness. A well rested, spiritually aware, mindful soldier apparently is well adjusted to fight illegal war. Bonus it saves money too!

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/01/us/army-naps.html

11:19 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

al-Q - Do you have a link for the Russian TV series? Also, by "Great War" is it meant WWI or WWII? WWII is generally called the Great Patriotic War by the Russians while "The Great War" or "The World War" was the term used for WWI by the Anglosphere at least.

The best series I've seen on Russia's participation in WWII is called "The Unknown War" and it's excellent, but beware: There are a lot of truncated and Bowdlerized versions out there. The only way to actually see the full and honest thing is to buy it on DVD.

1:21 AM  
Blogger anderszornpalette said...

Nadine-

I don’t think your characterization of Peterson holds up under scrutiny. His take on hierarchies and competition seems a little different than what you’ve presented. Just listening to a couple of clips from two different interviews presents me with a different picture of his views on competition. He seems to hold the opinion that fair play and cooperation are the most important values in any form of competitive endeavor, rather than winning at any cost and crushing your enemies. View the following clips to see what I mean:

https://youtu.be/-vr3SCwLB3E

https://youtu.be/Ci5ZgQnTKvM

Is he a capitalist? Yes. Is he a con man? Dr Berman thinks so. I disagree, but you can make that argument fairly. I think it’s important to understand that the generation that has gravitated towards him probably hasn’t had those messages of personal responsibility, fairness in competition, etc, taught to them by their own parents - the parents are often too self absorbed, vapid, not present, and so on. Hence his popularity with young men.

Supposedly, he’s been out of the spotlight due to his wife being diagnosed with terminal cancer and a battle with addiction to anti-anxiety meds.

1:48 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

anders-

One does hafta wonder, if his philosophy (whatever it is) is so life-affirming, why he's addicted to prescription drugs (or anything). I do think a lot of his appeal was due to his opposition to political correctness--something millions of people had become (justifiably) disgusted with, by the time he appeared on the scene.

Gunnar-

Check out the section of "Neurotic Beauty" on Zen and war.

mb

2:03 AM  
Anonymous Burns said...

"Here is something that the psychologists have neglected: the love of ugliness for its own sake, the lust to make the world intolerable. Its habitat is the United States." - H.L. Mencken

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Anjin-san said...

Great article on Salon...

https://www.salon.com/2020/10/05/republican-privileged-fks-with-covid-are-getting-top-tier-health-care-while-others-die_partner/

Includes an almost perfect tweet encapsulating the madness of Trump and the USA...

He hosted a super-spreader event to honor a justice who would have the government control your body but refuse the duty to care for it, and when the virus he helped go around came around, he availed of the healthcare he would deny others, financed by the taxes he refuses to pay.

9:12 AM  
Anonymous April said...

Big Companies Are Starting to Swallow the World
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/30/business/big-companies-are-starting-to-swallow-the-world.html

9:33 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Burns-

Occasionally I've said that my work as a critic is in the lineage of Mencken, George Carlin, and Gore Vidal. But that's probably flattering myself too much. Great quote, in any case.

mb

9:56 AM  
Anonymous Malleus Maleficarum said...

Anders, I'm going to back Dr Berman on Peterson. Yes, he's a conman because, even as he makes some valid points, he uses his celebrity to talk out of his arse about things he doesn't have a clue about, like the history of the Russian revolution, capitalism, marxism etc. He famously refused to debate with Richard Wolff on that last subject. Here's Richard Wolff talking about it:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmRN6plLeHU

And about his addiction to clonazepam, I don't want to take advantage of his misery, as it can happen to anybody, but it's quite ironic that it would happen to somebody selling books telling young males to "put their own house in order".

10:31 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
You aren’t alone. Or perhaps he must have read your American empire trilogy. Check out this trenchant critique of capitalism and America by Pope Francis. It’s fair to say it won’t go over too well with the many “free market”, “Christian”, church going/prosperity gospel conservatives in the U.S. ;)
https://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2020/10/05/Pope-criticizes-lack-of-unity-capitalism-amid-pandemic/6301601882843/

1:02 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Since I saw on this site a H. R. Menchen quote, I searched to see where that quote came from - a book or article - but found a webpage instead. Here's another quote which I think comes close to our present reality (and includes a possible source) and the webpage where found:

“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

― H.L. Mencken, On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe

https://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/7805.H_L_Mencken

1:20 PM  
Blogger David said...

For the average American, freedom of speech is simply the freedom to repeat what everyone else is saying and no more. Gore Vidal

2:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Michael-

That line was quoted a lot when Bush Jr. got elected. As for Peterson, he launched a # of money-making gimmicks, wh/is a sure sign of a con man. Cf. Deep-pockets Chopra.

mb

4:15 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkus said...

Anders, it's true that your link shows a video of Peterson describing how sports foster cooperation among teammates. It's also true that in many videos, he praises corporate capitalism, claiming that honor, self-discipline and other old-fashioned virtues lie at its core. He speaks in the language of old-fashioned virtues, but favors policies that promote the materialism and cutthroat competition that destroy these virtues. He says we should deregulate everything and tear down most of the safety net because it wastes resources while doing very little to help people rise above poverty. He even claimed Trump displays all the evolutionary hallmarks of a great leader. I can't even make this stuff up...if you believe Peterson, an illiterate, narcissistic moron is fit to be a king.

6:04 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmRN6plLeHU (Wafer Malleus' submission)

Peterson's $50,000 speaking fee pales in comparison to Oshitforbrain's $600,000 speeches.


https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/06/20/obam-j20.html

A party with 2 right wings (Vidal). Can ANYONE (IQ>65) say, "USA" with a straight face?

6:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike-

Let's face it, they're both full of hot prunes.

mb

7:19 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

By "Great War" alex, I meant the 14-18 war, as anyone should guess; that the Russians lost ought to have been a hint.

My source is a Youtube channel called "Star Media EN." I've been watching this purt'near every night since May or June. I'm running out of shows to watch, though. Here's the main site:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuSx-lf2ft7hPceGVNHybOw

This is the World War One series:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lymm8TU900E&list=PLwGzY25TNHPAtf180Sg-YDiPAjeYm01aP

Here's a decent doc on the Great Patriotic War:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CerdjvePsg&list=PLwGzY25TNHPC_SsXFcIH-ba0nWuNbHOM6

I recommend all the TV shows about WW2 except "The Bomb," although some may like its campy historical inaccuracies and outrageous depictions of the home front in the USA.

7:22 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Vanessa Lee Jones, 28, arrested for flicking the bean near the front doors of a 7-Eleven:

https://newsbeyonddetroit.net/2020/10/02/woman-nabbed-for-lewd-act-at-7-eleven/

Will anything ever surpass the rapture of Vanessa's convenience store sexual awakening?

Miles

8:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Magni-

Cdn't run it. We have a half-pg-max rule on this blog.

Jeff-

When you realize the whole country is going nuts, Vanessa's little massage activity is not all that surprising. What's a poor girl to do, anyway?

al-

After the Trinity test, restaurants in the Los Alamos area posted signs that they were serving "Atomic Cocktails." Oy. I really must finish that bk I've been working on, "Americans Are Fucked in the Head."

mb

8:40 PM  
Anonymous Magni Ficent said...

MB,

Here is a shortened post:

Recently Trump endorsed the "racehorse theory" to a crowd of white supporters in Minnesota, telling them that they have "good genes". His rhetoric is similar to that of American eugenicists and German Nazis.

He wanted to shoot the legs of migrants and just recently ICE placed billboards of unauthorized immigrants who were charged with crimes throughout Pennsylvania, which demonizes them and increases the likelihood they will be violently attacked while serving no useful purpose. Cruelty towards non-whites is the point for him.

In other news, a new article in the Atlantic shows that Americans' level of trust in their fellow citizens has collapsed.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/collapsing-levels-trust-are-devastating-america/616581/

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ice-billboards-immigrants-pennsylvania-criticism-former-officials/

https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-10-05/trump-debate-white-supremacy-racehorse-theory?_amp=true&__twitter_impression=true

8:43 PM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Il Trumpolini has a message for America after arriving at the White House after his time at Walter Reed hospital-

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1313267615083761665

Every know and then I stare into the void and realize that there are tens of millions of people who will vote for him. Very scary.

For a little musical interlude as you glance away from the collapse, a reminder that there have been some good things to come out of this 400 year experiment. Linda Ronstadt singing a Little Feat song.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJHcD0kHTGk&list=RDNZq9BvcEigo&index=3

8:50 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Magni-

I cdn't find any ref to "shooting the legs of migrants." Do you wanna document that? As for the Atlantic article: I generally regard David Brooks as a moron, and he ends his essay on an optimistic note, saying that small positive acts might save us. Yeah, right. This is NYT talk, always reassuring the professional and upper classes that ultimately, all will be well. The following line from the essay, however, is a moment of truth: "[Trump] threatens to undermine the legitimacy of our democracy in November and incite a vicious national conflagration that would leave us a charred and shattered nation." As I've said repeatedly on this blog, the end game ain't gonna be pretty. (One might also argue that we are already charred and shattered.)

Dan D-

"Oh don't get me wrong
It's not that I NAH-ket
It's just that I am not in the MAH-ket
For a boy who wants to love only me"

mb

10:49 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Al-Q - Thanks!! Worried I was a bit brusque there, and you regale us with link largesse!

Magni - it's not "similar" it is in fact the very same line of thought.

Biden blowout = American Civil War. Close Biden win = Russian Revolution. Contested result = Irish War of Independence. Trump win = Rwandan Civil War. He's probably exaggerating the danger, but we'll find out soon enough. Some non-dreck on Medium:

https://medium.com/@mikeselinker/a-wargame-designer-describes-our-four-possible-civil-wars-cf5b2e980099

11:14 PM  
Anonymous Andre said...

https://wikipedia.org/wiki/Fellini_Satyricon

More and more, this country resembles Fellini's "Satyricon"

Great film, btw!

11:24 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Andre-

You might enjoy the Fellini chapter in "Genio".

mb

6:41 AM  
Anonymous Rockford said...

Malleus/Nadine/Mike/Michael/MB:

Re: Jordan Peterson's sophistry --

Here's an uncut interview that was just released w him on Dr. Oz(!)... Oh boy, and it's 5 hrs long.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daVjWUCIbAc&feature=youtu.be

I'll give it to him that he;s probably the only guest on that crock's talk show to bring up Nietzsche.

7:59 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Rock-

Oz thinks the plural of phenomenon is phenomenons.

As for 5 hrs: Take me now, O Lord.

mb

9:09 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Under the heading “Maternal Love,” this item revealing the domestic disturbances plaguing the Conway household. Kellyanne Conway, late of the Donald J. Trump White House, has a touching Mother-Daughter moment with Claudia. The 15-year-old Claudia shares the tenderness with her friends on TikTok. A Las Vegas line on how long the Conway marriage can survive the stresses has not been opened yet.
https://www.rawstory.com/2020/10/watch-kellyanne-conway-curses-out-her-daughter-who-blamed-her-for-giving-family/

And, as a lagniappe, this story on all the folks KNOWN to have been infected over the past week after attending or participating in presidential events:
https://www.rawstory.com/2020/10/trail-of-wreckage-cnn-graphic-shows-all-the-people-infected-by-trumps-super-spreader-administration/

9:49 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jas-

At some pt after Reagan took office, the country faced a silent, and much more deadly, pandemic: douchebaggery. This disease has now attained full force, nationwide.

mb

11:15 AM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Come one, come all now you too can own this commemorative coin, only $100!

https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2020/10/05/trump-defeats-covid-commemorative-coins-on-sale-gift-shop/3628383001/

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Shawn said...

Thousands of US troops have come home from Iraq

https://taskandpurpose.com/news/us-troops-iraq-drawdown-complete

About time, no? Might not be with any forethought & leaving quite the mess but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

2:13 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Of Course they DID...because their lives have no more significance than an Ant, or an Aardvark.


Shot-up home of 2 NJ officers with newborn was wrong address: chief

https://www.foxnews.com/us/nj-officers-home-wrong-address-chief

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Albi said...

“For the foreseeable future the first line of defence against covid-19 will remain testing and tracing, social distancing and clear government communication. Yet countries like America, Britain, Israel and Spain persist in getting it disastrously wrong.” Why governments get covid-19 wrong

Therapies and vaccines will come, but not for many months. Until then, politicians will have to work on the basics

https://amp.economist.com/leaders/2020/09/26/why-governments-get-covid-19-wrong

America's as exceptional as it always was, even amid pandemic...

3:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

jj-

Time for Wafers to set up an Aardvark Liberation Front.

Ho Ho Ho Chi Minh
ALF is gonna win!

Shawn-

They will be useful in imposing martial law, also in gunning down unarmed citizens in the streets like dogs.

mb

3:10 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkus said...

It takes a special type of psychopath to refuse to sign a stimulus that would help states fight COVID right after you almost died from COVID, but that's what Trump's doing:

https://www.yahoo.com/money/coronavirus-stimulus-president-trump-rejects-democratic-offer-191702208.html

It also takes a special type of stupid to see this as sensible and moral, but half of America does. COVID's going to destroy America as a result, but what does it matter? If COVID didn't finish America off, the upcoming civil war would.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Unknown-

I don't post Unknowns. You need a real handle to participate in this blog.

Nadine-

Actually, I think the Yiddish word is bupkis. Check out the post of that name, a few posts back. As for factors destroying the US: discussed at length in my trilogy on the American empire.

mb

6:15 PM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

Wafer Nadine et al.

Maybe we should get these t-shirts to wear around the us empire? For 'only' 22$ plus tax & shipping. Act now!

https://www.etsy.com/listing/572599770/usa-shithole-country-tshirt-im-from-a

6:21 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dr. Shit-

This is really great. I think another possibility might be (speaking of shit)

AMERICANS HAVE SHIT FOR BRAINS

mb

ps: Seriously, can you imagine such a T-shirt being for sale 10 yrs ago? As Bob once said:

"Come senators, congressmen
Please heed the call...
The battle outside ragin'
Will soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin'."

(1964; talk abt prescient!)

7:55 PM  
Anonymous Magni Ficent said...

MB,

The source for my claim that Trump wanted to have migrants shot in the legs is Miles Taylor, the former Chief of the Department of Homeland Security and prior reporting from 2019 in the NY Times.

From the Salon article linked below: “When discussing border security, Taylor said, Trump would concoct "sickening" schemes "to pierce the flesh" of migrants at the southern border, "maim" and gas them.” …

..Trump also reportedly suggested that soldiers shoot migrants in the legs to slow them down.”

As for David Brooks, there seems to be an irony in the fact that he proposes “small heroic acts” as the only solution to the problems he describes: he can only think of individual, uncoordinated actions as forming the basis of social change (as opposed to collective actions such as, among other things, restructuring the political economy to make life better for the majority) because he subscribes to hyper-individualism, which is at the root of the problems he describes in his article (collapsing levels of truth among Americans).

https://www.salon.com/2020/08/27/trump-wanted-to-maim-and-tear-gas-migrants-at-us-mexico-border-former-dhs-official-claims/

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/01/us/politics/trump-border-wars.html

8:52 PM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Not sure how many people here have had the experience of having a meeting over Zoom or some other video system. Personally, I have found it less than productive.

With the Joint Chiefs of Staff in quarantine, half the White House staff, the President... no one should be meeting in person.

Running the world's largest military, world's largest employer, world's largest economic monolith....

by Zoom.

Hahaha.... so THIS is how it ends, a herky jerky video conference call with robot audio voices.

The US government, only with no adults in the room....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABWQoMeqKg8

10:28 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Other than the fact that most people seem content that real issues aren't debated much less admit that the United States runs a world-wide empire (perhaps a few more people realize this than decades ago but don't seem to really give a damn) Cailin Johnstone's comments about our so-called two party system are dead on.

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/10/07/us-politics-isnt-polarized-its-in-almost-universal-agreement/

12:41 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Michael-

My favorite line from that article:

"The real debate is those two factions together against those who understand that the entire American status quo needs to be flushed down the toilet."

mb


2:20 AM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Dr. Shithouse - All the flag on that shirt needs is a drawing of an anus right on the middle of it, in Kurt Vonnegut style https://salo.iu.edu/index.php/the-asshole-and-the-proto-emoji-the-visual-artwork-of-kurt-vonnegut/

All - On NPR right now there's a compare/contrast bit about how Germany, led by a scientist (Merkel) is faring wrt Covid vs. the USA, run by a huckster. The comparison is stark as we all know.

Dan Daniel - I'm sure the US military could be better coordinated using more reliable methods IE the ASR-33 TeleType and dial phones. By all accounts Zoom's shitty and I've never tried it due to having awful Silicon Valley internet which is barely better than dial-up.

7:34 AM  
Anonymous Anton said...

Neoliberalism told us that the natural state of human beings is to be selfish, competitive economic maximisers. We built a society around this vision. It's a society riven with epidemic depression & anxiety & addiction, in part because this is not, in fact, our human nature.

- Johann Hari, "Chasing The Scream"

8:17 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Anton-

Do you have a link for that essay? Thanks.

mb

9:25 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Anon or Unknown-

I don't post these; you need a real handle to participate in this blog. Thank you.

mb

1:18 PM  
Blogger Tim2 said...

Good afternoon Dr Berman and Wafers

An interesting introduction to the often used phrase
of ‘City on a Hill’ as covered in the book by
Abram C. Van Engen. Would be worth a read.

https://www.neh.gov/article/how-america-became-city-upon-hill

https://www.amazon.com/City-Hill-History-American-Exceptionalism/dp/0300229755

1:55 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

No links just an observation. When one pulls out the H-bomb (hitler) better be sure it isn’t a flippant comment or false equivalency, however I really don’t see much “hope” for aMEricans receiving competent psychiatric/mental health care. Make a list of 10, 20, hell 50 issues and mental health will always be at or near the bottom, hovering somewhere around sewage treatment plants. As the shithouse goes down what do people expect, all of sudden these issues rising to the top like cream? No, something will have to be done with theses millions of addicts, fuckups, and crazies. I don’t think it’s a stretch to envision camps for these people. It’s worth remembering these are the same types the Nazis went after first, they were the trial run for all that came after. My “enlightened self interest’ wants a Biden win for the sole reason of delaying this outcome.

2:27 PM  
Anonymous Kiley said...

Half of Americans Don’t Vote. What Are They Thinking?https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/19/knight-nonvoter-study-decoding-2020-election-wild-card-115796

I dunno, the decent ones are probably thinking about how they're going to pay rent or buy groceries? The others about the Kardashians.

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Riffe said...

Anton - finished reading Chasing the Scream last week. I agree with his premise that addiction is mostly caused by childhood and adult trauma and that the conventional wisdom of jailing, shaming, and moralizing is not only unhelpful but adds to their sense of isolation.

I wish, however, that he would have spend more time on brain chemistry as also causative, albeit only 15-17%. Some people are born with a neuro-chemical proclivity to addiction. One might come away from reading the book with the idea that it's about experience, alone.

5:17 PM  
Blogger meangenekaz said...

Dr. Berman, GSWH y los Waferes -

I have been busy kicking lawyers asses this summer. Hence, my prolonged absence from the blog. Checking it today I'm pleased to see the topic "thy dread refrain", etc. always a favorite reference verse from your classic "The Twilight of American Culture". We remain the few, the proud, the brave. The knuckleheads.

No links, no observations, just the usual "Say What?" Glad to see that commander covid has the same now.

"darkness at the break of noon shadows even the silver spoon to understand you know too soon there is no sense in trying" and "he not busy being born is busy dying" and "meanwhile life goes on all around you" and "propaganda all is phony". - thanks to Bob Dylan for that. I suppose there is a link maybe Jeff has got it? No internet at my house.

I am in fine health. Two down and two more to go - stupid lawyers that is! Stupid is as stupid does. I'm sorry to see that author departed.

Mean Gene

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Cherry said...

New England Journal of Medicine in a rare editorial: "Dying In a Leadership Vacuum"

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe2029812

5:58 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mean-

I don't remember referencing that verse in the Twilight bk. Glad yr in gd health.

mb

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

As the joke known as the 21st-century American "social justice" movement continues to unfold, I'm reminded of George Carlin's observation that Americans declare war on everything they don't like, including issues that need to be handled compassionately and with great nuance, like poverty and homelessness. The contemporary "social justice" movement has declared war on racism and sexism, thinking it's going to crush these things through bullying and occasional violence. It never occurs to them to try a gentler approach. Although humans have always used harsh methods to achieve various things, only morons would try to cultivate tolerance by treating people like shit. It's pretty clear the American "social justice" movement is just as stupid as the rest of American society. Onward and downward, my friends...onward and downward.

9:00 PM  
Blogger NeilW said...

Surprisingly candid argument from New Statesman: https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2020/10/why-president-s-hubris-face-covid-19-pandemic-pure-americana

10:56 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Cherry - That NEJM article is very good.

Gunnar - Regarding the H-bomb, I didn't listen to all of tonight's debate but caught some of it near the end. Particularly chilling was the part where Harris said something about democracy and Pence replied, essentially, that democracy was not what their side was about, but "the economy" which is exactly what Hitler and co. campaigned on back in their day.

11:12 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Of Course He DID!! As parent’s, you can’t just stop paying your 32 year old sons bills!!



https://knewz.com/joel-guy-jr-convicted/

1:12 AM  
Blogger anderszornpalette said...

Nadine-

I have yet to see what you describe and would be happy to concede that what you say is true, but you need to point me to specific statements and videos for me to do so. I’m definitely not sitting through 5 hours of a Dr Oz interview, though. No human being should have to suffer through that.

Anyone catch the VP debate? Looked like two androids with poorly programmed personalities going at it. Total snoozefest.



1:35 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Well, as to the VP debate: personally, I think Harris won, hands down, and apparently so did 59% of those polled in the aftermath. She came across as competent and solid, while Pence came across as a smooth, unctuous buffoon (and obvious liar). I esp. liked the fly on his head, wh/cd be taken as symbolic. That being said, I doubt the debate moved the needle. These debates are kind of useless. No Trumpite will vote for Schmiden as a result of Wed. night; and no Schmidenite will change his/her vote to Trumpi. I really wish they wd cancel the next 2 pres. debates.

mb

2:23 AM  
Anonymous Antimony said...

Retarded lives matter. Terrorist lives matter. Etc.
https://therightstuff.biz/2020/10/07/tds652/

3:04 AM  
Blogger Jason Tower said...

Nadine - your comment reminded me of a discussion in an anthropology class I took as an undergrad. The traditional Navajo belief is that illness indicates an imbalance that can be corrected through appropritate action. The model in the US is that illness is the enemy that needs to be attacked and defeated; the "war on cancer," the "battle against COVID," etc. The Navajo way is gentle and mostly internal, while the American way is violent and outward directed.

I don't remember the exact article we were discussing(it was 20+ years ago), but here's a link to a page about the Navajo Wellness Model:
https://www.ihs.gov/newsroom/ihs-blog/january2018/navajo-wellness-model-keeping-the-cultural-teachings-alive-to-improve-health/

4:02 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Antimony-

Cdn't access it. What's it abt?

mb

9:01 AM  
Anonymous Heron C. said...

John Gray reviews The Glass Kingdom by Lawrence Osborne in The NewStatesman:
https://www.newstatesman.com/culture/fiction/2020/10/how-lawrence-osborne-subverts-crime-genre

9:11 AM  
Anonymous Tommy said...

Think Jacques Derrida was a charlatan? Look again | Prospect Magazine
https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/magazine/jacques-derrida-philosopher-not-overrated

This book looks scintillating

10:39 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Tommy-

?

I never said Derrida was a charlatan. But since you asked, I credit postmodern deconstructionism w/10% truth, 90% b.s.

mb

10:52 AM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe2029812

Even the 'smart' US-ians are dumb (Berman). Yep, just get rid of Trumpo et al. and everything will be happy in happy valley. Trump is and was the US. He's as American as a hamburger. What these 'educated' morons fail to understand is they are also America. They voted with their feet, stay in the shit hole, and don't know anything and don't want to know anything.

The populace wanted no health care system, clutch to their hyper-capitalistic corporate "medicine" and other hustling activities. These endless chants of we can do betters, and aspirational calls paging Mr. Should and Mrs. Could further shows how delusional these folks are. Most US-ians hate science, hate intellectuals, chasing money was their life, and there never was a true community. Geez, what could go wrong?

Maybe the editors could have titled their editorial: Nothing is Gonna Change: We're Dumber than Stale Dogshit.

11:42 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dr. Shit-

Centuries of hating socialism, and the life of the mind, are now reaping their karmic rewards. Americans are being punished with death and poverty, as a result of a way of life they enthusiastically embraced--and still do. However, the punishment is wasted, because they have no idea that they did anything wrong. They can't connect the dots--and this includes the ones w/high IQs--because they are fundamentally stupid. Trump may lose the election, but the relentless dismantling of the country will go on. Kamala Harris sounds gd, but there's nothing she or anyone else can do to stop the process.

Let me repeat this link:

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/10/07/us-politics-isnt-polarized-its-in-almost-universal-agreement/

Everything we are exercised abt doesn't amount to shit. Our problems are structural. 99% of the American public don't even know what 'structural' means. A clown country, filled w/clowns.

mb

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Orca said...

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2020/10/08/governor-gretchen-whitmer-kidnap-plot-militia/5921409002/?fbclid=IwAR14oaI7saud0FSUzxkpivzdIcp9yMq_OPuyMGMLmPKsFEK1ytGQZawswS0

Crazier and more violent by the day

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Tommy said...

Re: Derrida

Didn't say you said anything - that is the title of the book review article (that's linked right below it lol)

;)

Agree w/ your percentage estimates, but it still looks like an interesting read.

1:23 PM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

Hello Wafers, have been caught up with stuff and teaching for the past month or so. So cud not post. The theatre continues. But this one is great.
https://edition.cnn.com/2020/10/08/politics/fbi-plot-michigan-governor-gretchen-whitmer/index.html

Men planning to kidnap the MI governor.

When you go down you go down in style, like an empires.

1:32 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Tommy-

OK, fair enuf.

Indian-

The one thing America lacks is style. Let's not kid ourselves. In fact, we may be the 1st empire in history to collapse in a surreal fog. Trumpi is now calling Kamala Harris 'a monster'. The real hero of last nite's debate, imo, was the fly.

mb

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

Jason Tower,

I'm not surprised the Navajo used gentle means to treat diseases and other problems. I wish Americans could learn from the Navajo and become gentle. Alas, Americans can't learn, for they are robots that run on hyper-individualistic/hyper-competitive/hyper-materialistic/hyper-imperialistic programs. Most can't reprogram themselves, and those that do become apostates.

3:30 PM  
Blogger Tim2 said...

Good afternoon Dr Berman and Wafers

The fly on Mike Pence's head during the
debate can be expected perhaps when you
have sh*t for brains. No surprise there.

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Sybok said...

The Fake Pence - Harris Debate


From the article: "Therefore, I put the question to you as to why American politicians are especially averse to debating in front of the American public. Why do they call some of their televised interviews “debates,” as though the mere trappings of a debate — the podiums, stage floor, spotlights, moderator, and live audience — could stand in for the substance of a debate, for an exchange of arguments designed to reveal the truth of the matter?"

3:58 PM  
Anonymous Pete Christen said...

MB and Wafers:
Here's something you might have missed. This week Stephen Miles of the group Win Without War reported that former Lockheed Martin CEO Robert Stevens is listing his River View Estate for an eye-popping $60 million. Stevens spent tens of millions of dollars designing and constructing the home, tens of millions transferred to him from the US treasury in the form of salary as head of the world's top weapons contractor. Miles adds that a significant portion of the almost $5 trillion spent on wars in Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001 has gone to US military contractors, including Lockheed Martin, DynCorp, Black & Veatch, and Academi (formerly Blackwater). And there is no end in sight. In the current election cycle, US weapons makers have already spent over $27 million on lobbying and campaign contributions — to members of both parties.

3:58 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Pete-

Links? Proof? Anyone can make assertions.

Nadine-

And that ain't no bupkis!

mb

4:26 PM  
Anonymous Riffe said...

Speaking of debates and politics, down here in conservative eastern NC, Dems have poured millions into the Senate race to unseat Tillis. Only to find out that their boy, Mr. Cunningham, was sexting one of his consultants. The guy had a good chance of winning 2 weeks ago - he led in all the polls. But he couldn't avoid the temptation to look like a stud muffin in pinstripes. Imagine spending millions on a candidate only to watch him self-destruct in the final weeks. I can't decide which side is dumber. And then I remember Gore Vidal's wisdom: there aint but one side. And MB's famous maxim: even the smart ones are dumber that a dead goat.

https://www.politico.com/news/2020/10/07/cal-cunningham-apologizes-427689

4:57 PM  
Anonymous antimony said...

You should be able to access this https://therightstuff.biz/2020/10/07/tds652/ MB there is a captcha security check. I like their podcasts and analysis of how the poor are being played against each other.

Americans were born into a subverted tyranny. I grew up in a homogenous environment, rural, labor intensive, much less morally degenerate (goes without saying) and much more intellectual than today. Yet, the 60's sexual rev happened, with the constant war, and empty consumerism pushed through mainstream media, TV, etc. Schools were dumbed way down of course. Auto-didactic and creative choices were incorporated and later stolen through patent law etc. Farms went under due to federal policies against autonomy for harvest and control and theft.

I agree most people are mediocre seeking mediocrity and comfort over consciousness and morality. America today was an overall communist plan implemented over decades. TV went from wholesome to degenerate for example. For gifted Americans that despise all this bureaucracy and corruption and subversion - they have always been victims of a powerful relentless octopus.

5:23 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ant-

'communist plan'??!

mb

6:27 PM  
Anonymous Jens said...

On Kamala Harris:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWUMXH2mRAM&t=4s

‘Neoliberal Shapeshifter’ Kamala Harris Shows LOVE For Wall Street, Neocons In Debate

6:43 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jens-

Probably true, but I hafta tell u, that since last nite, I've had a huge desire to hunt down Sr. Pence, and pee on his shoes. But in any case, it's all theater; debates, schmebates.

mb

7:25 PM  
Anonymous Andalusian Musician said...

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/10/07/us-politics-isnt-polarized-its-in-almost-universal-agreement/

I think it all comes down to the fact that Americans, even the smart ones who should know better simply unable to handle emotionally the truth. The truth is the elections in US are rigged, with stealing votes, voter suppression. According to Americans, corruption and vote rigging happens in other far off lands, inhabited by backward unenlightened people, shitholes to borrow Trumps colorful term. But vote rigging in America? Impossible, according to Americans. Progressives and other Americans simply are unable to accept and comprehend that US is the most corrupt nation on earth. America is really a third world nation, passing off as the most advanced. How did trillions of dollars went missing at the Pentagon?

7:29 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Karens on the march!:

https://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local/west-hollywood-racist-attack-charged-malibu-woman/2441272/

O dem Karens!

mb

7:32 PM  
Anonymous Flabster said...

None of these genetically gifted gents noticed the newest member of their posse had more teeth than the rest put together:

https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/local/2020/10/08/view-mugshots-for-13-people-charged-after-fbi-uncovers-plot-to-kidnap-michigan-gov-whitmer/

7:34 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Flab-

I didn't see any teeth. But these are all bubbas--the vanguard of the decline. Can you imagine a scenario like this 10 yrs ago? And what can we expect 10 yrs from now?

mb

8:46 PM  
Blogger k_pgh said...

Happy Birthday, Trisha.

Michigan Militia (1997)


Bonus: Rush Limbaugh and Heads Rammed in Rumps.

The Greatest Man in America (1994)

9:56 PM  
Anonymous Lev Mladin said...

Just in case you’re not aware of it maria farrell’s "The Prodigal Techbro" is an excellent counterpart to Netflix’s The Social Dilemma, which features surveillance capitalism scholar
Shoshana Zuboff

https://conversationalist.org/2020/03/05/the-prodigal-techbro/

8:27 AM  
Anonymous Flabster said...

In 10 years parts of the Midwest will be Bubbastan? Ten years ago I never could have imagined this!

I was not clear enough on the 14th member, he wa was an FBI agent. I hope his disguise didn’t involve tooth extraction!

8:51 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Flab-

I'm thinking the bubbas need Hebrew endings. Hence, in the plural, bubbim for men, and bubbot for women; which of course is the same as karens.

mb

9:38 AM  
Blogger jjarden said...

First interview with James Kunstler in years!! Morris is mentioned at the beginning...


https://youtu.be/YdPeYL14gtU

9:54 AM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

Dr. B,

I've noticed a sickening trend of liberals becoming bubbas and supporting Trump and all his awful agendas. I can't wrap my head around this; Trump has devastated America, and the more he devastates it, the more people walk away from liberalism and support him. I know the American left is a repulsive, censorious sham, but Trump is surely worse. With Trump, America's collapse will be swift and brutal.

I wonder whether liberals secretly want to end this shitshow. I wonder if they have a death wish lingering right below their conscious awareness. I wonder if this compels them to walk away from liberalism and support someone who is quickly destroying the nation. We've seen a dramatic increase in depression, suicide and drug addiction, so this explanation seems sensible. However, I also wonder whether liberals yearn for an all-powerful leader who can deliver them from evil just like conservatives do. So too, I wonder whether liberals still cling to the American Dream so fiercely that they are compelled to vote for a hustler extraordinaire. Or maybe all of these things are true?

I'm pretty sure none of these ideas fully explain why so many liberals are becoming bubbas, so I'd like to hear your analysis.

11:15 AM  
Anonymous Chopped Liver on Toast said...

Thanks for the link JJ, just reading his blog sometimes makes one think JHK is off his rocker, but in person he's quite reasonable.

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Pete Christen said...

MB and Wafers:
Sorry for not including sources for the earlier post about Lockheed Martin and military spending. Here they are:
https://www.wsj.com/articles/george-washington-mount-vernon-60-million-11601486403
https://www.bizjournals.com/washington/news/2020/10/01/dc-areas-new-most-expensive-home-for-sale.html
https://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?Ind=D
https://www.pogo.org/analysis/2020/07/the-bunker-the-contractors-pie-keeps-growing/

12:07 PM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

After the plot to kidnap the Governor, comes this. 'Democracy is not the objective', unfettered hustling is. Finally, the cat is out of the bag.


https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/oct/08/republican-us-senator-mike-lee-democracy

12:36 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Indian-

Ironic, in that from Jefferson on, hustling and democracy were closely linked in the American mind. But it was always b.s. Singapore is no democracy, but aggressively capitalistic, for example. But douche bag Milton Friedman was labeled 'Mr. Freedom', celebrated as a great hero of democracy/capitalism, and so on. If the two are now clearly separated, then indeed the true American objective can finally be seen as hustling. Note that we are only too happy to support tyrannical regimes, and have been doing so for many yrs now.

Nadine-

It depends on how you frame our situation, wh/is one of inevitable collapse. Certainly, Trumpi is a disgusting, vile lunatic, but from a declinist pt of view, this is a gd thing, because collapse is a gd thing, and he's the rt person to accelerate that process. To me, he is a classic example of Hegel's World Historical Individual, who, like Napoleon, has been chosen by History to do a certain job. And he's doing it! In the name of saving America, he's dismantling it.

All Schmiden and other progs might do is slow the process down, wh/is not what the world needs rt now. What are we, really? A genocidal war machine run by a plutocracy and cheered on by morons. Why in the world wd any decent person want that to continue? A lg % of the countries of the world will be only too happy to see the US crippled and broken, unable to impose its imperial will on them and everybody else. Also check out the last few Roman emperors, in the 5thC: ineffectual morons; one of them, I believe, was 7 yrs old. This cd only help the collapse, wh/was, as in our case, a positive historical development. Hopes need to be pinned on the Monastic Option (see Twilight bk) or, in our case, a New Monastic Option; not on progressive attempts to keep the US going in one form or another.

So again: if you think America can and shd be repaired, then the progressive position makes sense. On the other hand, if you have come to the conclusion that the place is a violent shit pile w/no hope of recovery or redemption, then in a strange but nonetheless realistic way, Trumpolino is yr man.

mb

1:14 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Someone oughtta publish a glossary of gringo political definitions so those of us outside your borders can follow your discussions. I can see how the Republicans can be called "right," but how can the Democrats be described as "left?" From what I can tell, you have an extreme right-wing party in the Democrats, and an insanely extreme right-wing party in the Republicans. If Eisenhower were running today he'd be denounced as a communist.

Then those woke cretins are supposedly "left," although their censorious stance more closely parallels that of Torquemada than of Kropotkin. I have no idea what "liberal" means to you people anymore, but I sense that John Locke doesn't figure into the calculation.

And then there are the progs. At half-a-page, I have to stop now, although I want to add something else.

2:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

al-

Check out Gore Vidal's explanation of the American political system.

mb

3:23 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

Gotta protect them signs

https://news.yahoo.com/trump-yard-sign-rigged-razor-142611747.html

4:08 PM  
Blogger vsoguy said...

Dear Dr. B-

Regarding your reply to Nadine, I agree wholeheartedly. One thing I find fascinating with my prog friends- when I say that Trump is the perfect icon for the US culture, they all agree. Then they go back to blaming him for all the problems going on. I find it highly peculiar that they seem to hold these two opposing thought constructs in their heads. But I guess that's what you get living in a cuckoo clock..

And thanks jjarden for the link to the JHK interview. Looking forward to that.

Here's a link to some Gore Vidal quotes for your amusement:

https://youtu.be/N1w9ZNylnjI

4:55 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

vso-

This is what I mean by even the smart Americans are dumb. Everywhere you look, esp. in the MSM, there are endless articles along the lines of: Our problem is Trump; get rid of him, and all will be well. These dummies have no awareness that our problems are structural, and that simply replacing Trump cannot solve them. Schmiden certainly can't solve them, and has no interest in doing so in any case. It wd require turning the country upside down, and how is that gonna happen? Obama treaded water for 8 yrs; Schmiden wd do the same thing.

mb

6:56 PM  
Blogger Arthur V. said...

Hello, Wafers:

I haven't posted in a bit, but this article really got under my skin.

alternet.org/2020/10/trump-to-cling-to-power-at-all-costs/

The writer goes on and on about how terrible things could get if Trump loses and refuses to leave, but of course the idea of the left arming themselves in self-defense is thrown out. We have to fight back non-violently is the only acceptable method. I would agree that violence should ALWAYS be the last resort, but I really get the impression that the 'progs' have been running away for so long that by now it's second nature. One bright point, however, is the comment section of this article. Some people stated that the need to arm oneself just in case isn't a bad idea and understand that should things really go south a picket sign ain't gonna do much good.

Stay safe all.

7:31 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Arthur-

Link didn't work. But one way this whole drama cd end is if the Pentagon issued a small arsenal, including a nuclear device, to every person living in the US, and told them: "Go out and shoot anyone you don't like." On an unrelated note, if I were Mike Pence, and I realized what a douche bag I was, I'd go out, get a .357 Magnum, and blow my brains out.

mb

8:25 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Flab-

Cdn't run it (24 hr rule).

mb

9:58 PM  
Anonymous Art Baker said...

That's Morris Berman's trouble: he does not look on the bright side of things when discussing 'mur'ka. For example, the FBI via NPR reports that of the 350 million guns owned by mur'kans, Trump's base of about 40 million owns ninety percent of these guns. Because of the
"Chinese" virus and the upcoming election, the fascist radio
talk shows speak of the coming election as being as pivotal
as the one before the Civil War: ONLY D can defend us against
all our internal and external enemies. To cheer you up further,
the FBI also reports that ammunition is being sold faster than it
can be replaced and that gun sales are soaring. There is no telling
what lunacy could erupt after the election is deemed rigged and
that Trump's friendly gang in the Supreme Court give re-elect him
6 to 3. Best to put off your next visit north until things
settle down.

10:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Art-

Yr rt: that news is truly bright. O dem bubbas...

mb

11:20 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Meanwhile, Americans are great human beings:

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/10/09/us/police-porcupines-trnd/index.html

11:23 PM  
Anonymous Caitlin said...

Portland mayoral candidate spotted with skirt featuring photos of communist leaders
https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/portland-mayoral-candidate-spotted-with-skirt-featuring-photos-of-communist-leaders

Her first public apology can be to Chinese Americans for celebrating a man who killed 1.5 million Chinese men and women. Couldn't imagine a better right-wing plant (if this was any other country)

9:01 AM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

Dr. B, I have no interest in saving America. I don't think it deserves to be saved. There’s almost nothing of value here, just endless strip malls and willful ignorance. The prevailing mode of being is anti-solidarity and anti-community. I was just wondering why liberals are becoming bubbas because I'm disgusted with them, but I think I’ve discovered the answer. American liberals never were all that committed to their stated ideals. Why else would they vote for warmongers like Clinton and Obama? Therefore, their flocking to Trump shouldn’t have surprised me, but sometimes I can't help but be shocked by the fascistic actions of my countrymen. In any event, I don't think Trump is the problem; he's the inevitable result of a profoundly sick culture unable to come to grips with reality. I would like to be able to celebrate Trump and his base as you do, but I'm just too disgusted to do so. I've never seen a people this vicious and ignorant. It certainly wasn't this bad when I was growing up.

In any event, I need to thank you for starting this blog and thank all the Wafers that post here. It helps keep me sane in this troubled time.

10:12 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Nadine-

Possibly the liberals are becoming bubbim (and bubbot=karens) because they realize all the things you cite abt the country. One famous conservative once said that a conservative is a liberal who got mugged by reality. Also note that progs adore Clinton and Obama; they don't see them as warmongers (or trash). But no need to concern yrself w/all that. Just look at where History is taking the US, and the folks most likely to take us there. (Hint: it ain't the liberals)

mb

10:49 AM  
Anonymous Mike Morgan said...

Metropolis: A History of the City, Humankind's Greatest Invention


https://www.amazon.com/Metropolis-History-Humankinds-Greatest-Invention/dp/0385543468

“Faith in the gods & faith in the financial system went hand in hand” - Ben Wilson on Uruk in Metropolis

The 1st person in history whose name we know - Kushim of Uruk - was not a king or a priest, not a warrior or a poet, but an accountant. (The 2nd is a slave-owner & his two slaves.)

My next text for nighttime reading. Very excited for this to come in.

11:12 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

A nice example of the sickness in the US, focused on Trump while constantly avoiding the core malice of the US- "Covid-19 has unmasked the true nature of Donald Trump and Trumpism"

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/09/covid-19-unmasked-true-nature-donald-trump-trumpism

I think people here will see the fallacy in the last paragraph: "We don’t know what further twists await in this long, melancholy drama; we don’t know who will win next month. But if Donald Trump is ejected from office, Americans will still have to wrestle with a tough question: what does it say about the US if it took a pandemic to do it?"

Right, because we are so good at introspection....

Nadine, there has been a little value worth saving. Like

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sd5R0susntk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AW-zUz2WXAE

12:37 PM  
Anonymous Jimmy Beitz said...

https://www.ajc.com/news/police-killings-more-likely-in-agencies-that-get-military-gear-data-shows/

No fooling!

12:43 PM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

@vso and MB, there are high IQ stupid ppl all over. There are highly 'educated' and 'successful' ppl in academic here who genuinely saw the USofA as the fountainhead of liberty and democracy. Some of them had spent many more years there than I did! One of them did say that once Trump goes, the US will be back on its course. For these guys, history moves in an unwavering st line; sc, technology and rationality are the supreme endeavors and values to be put above any questioning. Indeed, they think sc and tech. are value neutral and are float above the political chaos on the ground. These guys are rally getting it up their ass. But again, they are absolutely clueless to figure out what really is happening. I only feel pity for them.

1:04 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Indian-

They need to be slapped.

mb

1:59 PM  
Anonymous Andalusian Musician said...

@Ordinary Indian. This ties in with the comment which I made earlier: these academics simply are incapable of handling emotionally the truth that US is not the land of freedom and democracy. This is the truth that they simply cannot digest and comprehend, because they have been taught (brainwashed) into believing all their lives that US is a beacon to the world.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/06/fred-reed/the-view-from-abroad-2/

I do understand this, even if I do not condone it. There were occasions in my life, where I myself was unable to look at the ugly truth. It takes a lot of courage. In conclusion I say this: People are not born idiots or selfish. America has a very well developed and sophisticated propaganda system. Far more effective than any propaganda that other authoritarian regimes ever came up with, such as Soviet, or even Nazi Germany.

2:59 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Andalus-

Consider the possibility--just speculating here--that Americans *are* born idiotic and selfish. Biology argues vs. Lamarck, vs. the notion of the inheritance of acquired characteristics. But what if there were something called neo-Lamarckian mimicry, by which, after hundreds of yrs, the difference between genetic transmission and inheritance of acquired characteristics was negligible. There are already studies showing that memes--tendencies or dispositions--acquired by parents later show up in children or grandchildren. Hustling is obviously a meme, and began on this continent in the late 16C. It is now so automatic, so embedded in the national character, that it is as tho it eventually seeped into our DNA. Hence Auden's famous line, "We would rather be ruined than changed." Hustling is taking the country down the drain, and instead of rejecting it, we are exacerbating it. In short, it's outside of our conscious control, even unto death.

mb

4:20 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...


Is Michigan's Capitol prepared for a 200 man armed attack, as extremists in Whitmer kidnapping plot allegedly planned...

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/10/10/michigan-capitol-militia-whitmer-kidnap-extremist-200-man-attack/5956503002/

7:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Art-

Wasn't able to post yr message. Some problems w/it:

1. We have a rule, post only once every 24 hrs, max.
2. Broadcasting yr opinion on things is not how we operate here. By themselves, opinions are not all that impressive. Try this instead:
a) You have an argument you want to make abt the collapse of the American empire, and you state it clearly.
b) You provide evidence for that argument in terms of bks or articles, and you provide links for them.
3. There's a vague kind of impoliteness to your posts; they seem to contain Attitude. This is the wrong way to enter the discussion, as it suggests a kind of peacock-like superiority. Respect is a better approach.

I understand that these guidelines may not be to your liking, which is OK; but in that case, you might wanna look around for a different discussion group.

mb

7:51 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Yesterday I wanted to comment on the progs' reaction to the vice-presidential debate, but got sidetracked.

Not that I saw the debate myself, but Saagar Enjeti destroyed Shamala's performance, pointing out how she's in thrall to Wall Street and Silicon Valley, and is closely allied with war criminals from Gee Dubya Bush's cabinet, yet the progs think she's great.
Saagar Enjeti: ‘Neoliberal Shapeshifter’ Kamala Harris Shows LOVE For Wall Street, Neocons In Debate
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWUMXH2mRAM

The next day, I saw the progs on Commondreams gushing all over about Shamala, and how she's a tough black woman, and black...and a woman, while completely ignoring her neoliberal proclivities.

https://www.commondreams.org/further/2020/10/08/flyboy-humiliate-tyrants

8:37 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

al-

As a very few observers have noted, nearly everyone in the US, politicians especially, are on the same side: competition, 'development', 'progress', consumerism, and hustling. Only exceptions are Wafers and Native Americans. Let me repeat:

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/10/07/us-politics-isnt-polarized-its-in-almost-universal-agreement/

Almost no Americans understand that the problem w/the US is structural. 99% think in terms of trivia, such as how affable Reagan was, Confederate statues, pussy hats, Kanye West as a basket case, and so on. Their idea of substantive social change doesn't really exist.

That being said, my desire to beat Pence senseless, and then urinate on his shoes, was at fever pitch during that debate. 'Douche bag' doesn't begin to cover it.

mb

9:51 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Arthur V - There's a growing trend among leftists to arm themselves, not all of us are just going to roll over. Keep in mind the Allies in WWII would be considered leftists now.

Ordinary Indian - Exactly. Tons of high-IQ idiots here in Silicon Valley. There's long been the strain of thought that if it can be calculated, it can be solved. Humanities? Schmumanities!

Meanwhile the US is *not* looking good according to the UN's genocide-prediction model ... https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/us-election-violence-right-wing-atrocities-genocide-by-alex-hinton-2020-10?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=organic-social&utm_campaign=page-posts-october20&utm_post-type=link&utm_format=16:9&utm_creative=link-image&utm_post-date=2020-10-09&fbclid=IwAR3x0FAyY4BTjQ5N_C9obbCzbp6EYzIPNhAT-8CVeROZ7p02b43BD3MePwo

11:24 PM  
Blogger WasLurkinNowLivin said...

Dear GSWH and Wafers,

The first time I became aware of Morris Berman and WAF was a talk he gave on WAF that was broadcast on David Barsamian's Alternative Radio back in ~2011-12. I'll never forget the feeling I had that this man's message was totally different than anything I had heard before on that show. That the problem with America wasn't the military, or education, or the economy etc. But instead it was America ITSELF!!! How refreshing! In particular I recall a stat he gave about mental illness being the leading cause of disability among the child population. Well nearly a decade later it seems those chickens are coming home to roost as evidenced in the following video... Ps. Who knew puppies could be used as projectiles?

https://www.reddit.com/r/PublicFreakout/comments/j8co4n/deranged_possibly_possessed_woman_harasses_a_guy/?utm_medium=android_app&utm_source=share

1:15 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

WasLurkin-

Sad video, I think. But thank you for switching from Lurkin to Livin. It's sorta like discovering chopped liver for the 1st time. Your life will be transformed.

alex-

Kurt Vonnegut said it many yrs ago: "There's a shit storm coming."

mb

2:07 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Happy Karen Sunday, Dr. Berman and Wafers. This week let’s watch in two parts the long and short of our favorite “all American” ladies exhibiting their wonderful “polite decorum” in Episode 12. LOL.

1) Caution: While driving beware of Karens on the road!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ml1raQGtMvA


2) And is this Trumper a Karen or a Darren? LOL!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGYPJ8YOLjg

8:41 AM  
Anonymous Matthew Scott said...

The Onion should just close down. You can’t top reality anymore

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/520486-taliban-supports-trump-reelection

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

I just saw a video of Bret Weinstein and his wife Heather Heying. They measured every major American politician's political leanings via the "political compass test", and all except Howie Hawkins, Bernie Sanders and Tulsi Gabbard were on the authoritarian right to one degree or another. According to the test, Biden and Trump are almost identical in their political leanings, which speaks volumes. The hatred and vitriol between Democrats and Republicans, despite their similarity, can be attributed to what some have called "the narcissism of minor differences". They are so blinded by their narcissism that they can't see any similarities between themselves and their political rivals, hence the hatred and vitriol. Gore Vidal really was right about the American political system.

If you want to see the video, here it is:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXuqAoPk_ac&t=4112s

10:35 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Nadine-

I tell ya, at this pt, only Tulsi can save us!

Matthew-

Honestly, it wdn't surprise me if Trumpola joined the Taliban.

Joe-

Call me crazy, I jus' love them. O dem Karens! (aka bubbot)

mb

10:55 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Meanwhile, men's final at the French Open is in progress as I speak. Motto for this year:
"He's not djoking around!"

10:57 AM  
Anonymous Christiana said...

‘Humans weren’t always here. We could disappear’: meet the collapsologists https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2020/oct/11/humans-werent-always-here-we-could-disappear-meet-the-collapsologists

11:44 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Happy Thanksgiving from your northern neighbour.

I first heard about Belman on that "Alternative Radio" broadcast too, WasLurkin. His emphatic use of "verkate" is what got me. I contacted David Barsamian years ago and got him to send our community radio station the show, which ran for quite some time, until a new management team took over and bumped AR in favour of local (and in a lot of cases, really bad) programming.

That some sort of Hobbesian war of all against all or a fascist takeover seems inevitable in the USA. If it can happen in civilized countries such as Weimar Germany or Italy, can a populace laced with bubbots and Karots, armed to the teeth and thinking themselves each a mini-god avoid such a fate?

12:27 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

al-

Don' ferget the bubbim, who nearly took over Michigan. Will Rhode Island be next?

What we've got down here is a verkakte country filled with verkakte people, whose heads are filled with kaka.

mb

2:47 PM  
Blogger Gunnar said...

@al sometime during the day tomorrow give thanks you live where shit like this doesn’t happen on a daily basis.

https://www.denverpost.com/2020/10/11/denver-protest-shooting-suspect-9news-matthew-dolloff/

3:10 PM  
Anonymous Art Baker said...

https://www.concordcoalition.org/budget-decisions?gclid=Cj0KCQjw2or8BRCNARIsAC_ppyY9vL0k-4eZT_97bJoDPOy6shc-HU1kD9niIEvM2cTvShHx_soDYKYaAskZEALw_wcB
Do pardon my "Attitude" and opinion that things
financial do not look jolly for 'mur'ka. Check
these dismal numbers to get cheered up about
how the country is running on credit cards.

7:00 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Art-

No need for quotation marks around "Attitude". Note also that no one here believes things financial look jolly for America; it just helps to see some data.

mb

7:06 PM  
Anonymous BH said...

The sad thing is that if the US goes full metal fascist there isnt going to be any war of invasion to stop it. The US having nuclear weapons will not be attacked or invaded to throw the fascists out. Our fascists will have free reign to do whatever. Hitler and Mussolini didnt have populations of hundreds of millions or nuclear armed weaponry so other countries came in and set them down and sent them to their maker to sort out. the folks here in the us will just have to go along with it and then deal with it ourselves if and when they smarten up and grow some balls. Will not happen though.

8:58 PM  

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