November 07, 2012

Mittney, we hardly knew ye!

Ay, Mittney, Mittney!

Who were you, anyway? You streaked across the dark, Obamaesque sky like a comet, and then just as quickly--you we're gone. A nation weeps.

You were, like the man who defeated you, an empty person, a Nowhere Man. Basically, a shmuck with a haircut. But there is one crucial difference: whereas your rival stands for nothing at all, and thus got filled up with Wall St. and the Pentagon--in other words, wound up as a corporate shill and a war criminal--you did have a philosophy. True, it wasn't much--warmed-over Reaganism, really--but you believed it. You believed that 47% of the American public were worthless layabouts; that the government is there to promote the rich and grind the poor into the dust; and that we should project American power to every corner of the globe, just for the hell of it. You probably think trees cause pollution, that ketchup is a vegetable, and that the homeless are homeless because that's what they really want for themselves. Pretty thin gruel, intellectually speaking, but at least it was something.

Of course, your rival has done enormous damage to America in four short years. He shredded the Bill of Rights, institutionalized kill lists and destroyed thousands of civilian lives in Pakistan and Afghanistan, increased hatred and bitterness toward the US, funneled $19 trillion into the pockets of bankers while the real unemployment rate stood at 18%--man, the list goes on and on. He even murdered American citizens on a whim, and has probably implemented the torture of many more. But what bothers me about your defeat, O Great Mittney, is that you could have done more, you could have made things even worse, and faster, too. And that's what America really needs, O My Mitt: to just fucking get it over with, instead of dawdling around with social/economic and cultural disintegration. So we'll continue slouching towards Bethlehem, committing suicide in piecemeal fashion, where you might have put us on the fast track to hell. This is indeed a sad day for our great nation, as you sat in your hotel room eating meatloaf, and composing your concession speech.

Who will remember you, in a month's time, O Mittney? Who remembers John Kerry? Who the hell was John Kerry? You get my point. Ay, Mittney: we hardly knew ye!


Anonymous shep said...

I'm sort of amazed. If this country wasn't so racist, think how many electoral votes Obomba wd have gotten. Probably all of them!

The Mormon thing killed money bags too.

So, a racist, cult figure, anti-christ grifter, selfish bastard almost took down one of the worst Presidents in history, but then, I guess they are all rotten.

Good old America. we hardly knew ye.

7:11 AM  
Anonymous Dave said...

Lol. This is indeed a sad day for America. The problem with Obama isn't his genocidal wars or his construction of the Keystone Pipeline; the problem is that he can speak coherently, and is therefore not very entertaining to listen to.

Mittney, you could have had us paralyzed with belly laughs from here to kingdom come. Your inability to speak your native language would have delighted and amused countless downtrodden people everywhere across the globe.

RIP Campaign Mittney

7:44 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Honestly, I think the real tragedy is that my 5-vol. "Principles of Mittnism" will never see the light of day. So much that the American public could have learned about the Mittnaic Philosophy, and now it will all sink into obscurity. Plus, it wd have put me into the Pulitzer winner's circle for sure.

And to think that the GOP was not able to field a single candidate capable of defeating one of the worst presidents in American history. The country is drowning in douche bags. Everywhere you look--douche bags. I tell u, it boggles the mind.

8:46 AM  
Anonymous sanctuary! said...

Unlike Rove, who continued to hold out for a Mittney win even after he tanked, I concede that our man won't appear on Mt. Rushmore. Mittney's loss has turned all wafers into political cynics. We will never hope again.

10:40 AM  
Blogger Cj said...

RIP USA. What a farce our elections are. Corporate controlled candidates and for the most part a docile, unquestioning, satisfied with life if they have the latest electronic pacifier citizenry.

Although for the most part I vote 3rd party I realize there will be no 3rd party savior. An ignorant population, seemingly proud of their ignorance, cannot be overcome. The die is cast. I just hope the US doesn't do too much more damage during its death throes.


10:49 AM  
Blogger Boris the Spider said...

I think you should self-publish an edition of the Principles of Mittnism and then bury the copies where, years from now, a young lad looking for buried treasure and gold will find them.

10:51 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings Dr. B

A zombie Reagan Nowhere Man versus a war criminal Nowhere Man! I love it. I know it's obvious, but I'm feeling it, and I can't resist it... All Together Now...

He's a real Nowhere Man,
Sitting in his Nowhere land,
Making all his Nowhere plans for nobody.

Doesn't have a point of view,
Knows not where he's going to,
Isn't he a bit like you and me?

Nowhere Man please listen,
You don't know what you're missing,
Nowhere Man, the world is at your command!

He's as blind as he can be,
Just sees what he wants to see,
Nowhere Man can you see me at all?

I hope all is well in Japan and thanks for keeping up with the blog. Your comments help keep us all sane.

11:45 AM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...

Unboggle that mind Doctor. I'm sure we all share the disappointment at the sinking of the Mittnaic Philososphy. Not too mention your Pulitzer, so I won't mention it. I think it was never to be, given the disdain for philosophies (other than hustling) shared by practically all Americans.

Of course we cannot see the depressed masses for the douche bags. Douche baggery is practically the only gainful employment still to be found in America (actually most of the empire). Is it not the effluvia of the douche bags in which we are about to drown?

In Mittney we are disappointed.

11:57 AM  
Anonymous satyaSarika said...

Dear mb,

Boggles is my current favorite word. It pretty much describes my state of mind all the time. What with the gloating liberal dolts and the cretinous right all around me (I live in SW Utah), the only grounding is the frequent repetition of the phrase, "I live among dolts"

Yesterday, while having a morning lie-about w gf, we enjoyed the sound of the word 'boggle'; it came up due to the fact of it being the 'election' charade day ...

12:07 PM  
Anonymous Bill M. said...

But MB, don't YOU think that the American public are "worthless layabouts"?

1:22 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Hope makes sense if there's a real context for it. In the US, that evaporated long ago. Hope is now a delusion that gets in the way of real understanding. But I just can't get the Left to see that. Their heads are deeply embedded in their buttocks, and they are rolling around like donuts while proclaiming the brilliance of their vision.


Yeah, either vote was a vote for endless war and corporate plutocracy. Some choice, and some future.


"Principles of Mittnism" probably belongs in a time capsule, along with my other work, and anything and everything written by Mittney himself.


Actually, many Americans work very hard, just to survive. True, they are worthless, but not nec. layabouts. I mean, consider Mittney. Well, maybe he's a layabout as well, I dunno...


1:39 PM  
Anonymous Chaz Homz said...

Since when is Hope supposed to makes sense? Optimism is the cognitive delusion getting in the way. But as Bejamin Franklin said, "Hope is for dopes".

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...

I cannot go on anymore. I cannot go on without you, Mittney! My life has no meaning without you, Mittney. My love for you, Mittney, has no meaning anymore. I am going to end it all now, Mittney. I am ending it for you, Mittney. I’ve given it all for you, Mittney. I’ve given you my wuv, my labor, my adoration, my fervent prayers to each and every of my Mormon gods. I’ve given it all in vain. I cannot go on anymore.

I am standing here on the Verrazano Bridge, and this will me the last you hear from me, Mittney. Adios, my idol, my leader, my wuv, my Mormon god of planet XarZax. Adios!

I’m jumping now!!!! It’s over! I wuv you, Mittney! I wuv you vewy, vewy much!


PS –sent from my iPhone 5 (latest model), made in China by the hands of Mittnaic slave laborers (but “designed in California”). I wuv my iPhone too. I wuv capitalism. And I wuv Mittney!

PPS – I’m really jumping now! No kidding!

4:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I think Ben was referring to Bob Hope, actually.


6:16 PM  
Anonymous Mascoto Pierre said...

The world is changing. America is changing. Like it or not, change comes your way.

Romney made his wealth from the changing nature of things. He destroyed American businesses and shipped firms to China. This is how he became rich. He may have to move to China to become the president of socialist/communist republic of China where slave labor and slaves make people like him wealthy.

7:20 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...


I'm so glad you cleared that up. I assumed Bejamin Franklin is probably an as yet obscure hip-hop'n rappin DJ who Chaz had probably misquoted. I was thinking Bejamin probably said he was "Hopin for dope." Silly me.

My own context for hope is that the liquor cabinet never go dry. Seems like about the only thing left worth hopin for.

In closing I have a question of no great significance to pose. Could Zero have jumped into the Verrazano Narrows if homo dumbassicus had done what must have been a close call and universally adopted the Roman numbering system?

Thanks to our Arab benefactors, it is definitely possible. My final question is, given the unique value of Zero, will he count as a missing person?

It's such things that keep me awake at night.


7:44 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...


Don't do it! Don't end it all! Don't look to Mittney for meaning! There are still many on the right who can still do serious damage to the United States. Indeed, the great intellectual and capitalist freedom fighter Michele Bachmann managed to survive a squeaker over Democrat Jim Graves. She's bound to stir up some trouble, no? Of course, Mittney would have ran circles of destruction around Michelle, but don't count he out. We also have the senior senator/author James Inhofe of Oklahoma who wrote a book titled "The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future." Believe me there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of lunatics with real power loose in Hustlerville USA. I know you're sad about Mittney, but don't pin all your hopes on the Mittster.

8:05 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

I know we are supposed to be good losers, but honestly watching democracy now and real news go on with this charade that a real election happened is depressing the hell out of me.

Laura Flanders with her red cheeks and Amy Goodman burbling over Obama and Elizabeth Warren, et al. like something different was going to happen. Flanders building this triumphalist scenario of courageous campaign workers going door to door and post-Sandy voters braving the dark to vote for Obama.

Chris Hedges was trundled off b4 the Obama victory, knowing he would be a downer about it.

I wonder what they will be saying when nothing changes and downward spiraling becomes even more rapid (though admittedly not as rapidly as Mittens would have been able to accomplish).

8:39 PM  
Anonymous Savantesimal said...

Meanwhile, a few rational voices continue to cry out in the wilderness of decay:

NYT Op-ed: The Permanent Militarization of America

IN 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower left office warning of the growing power of the military-industrial complex in American life. Most people know the term the president popularized, but few remember his argument.

In his farewell address, Eisenhower called for a better equilibrium between military and domestic affairs in our economy, politics and culture. He worried that the defense industry’s search for profits would warp foreign policy and, conversely, that too much state control of the private sector would cause economic stagnation. He warned that unending preparations for war were incongruous with the nation’s history. He cautioned that war and warmaking took up too large a proportion of national life, with grave ramifications for our spiritual health.


Aaron B. O’Connell, an assistant professor of history at the United States Naval Academy and a Marine reserve officer, is the author of “Underdogs: The Making of the Modern Marine Corps.”

9:05 PM  
Blogger Al M said...

That was the most obvious 'set up' election since Sarah Palin

9:59 PM  
Anonymous Dan said...

And in honor of Veterans Day, Sugarhouse Casino in Philadelphia has this message:"Join us as we honor our veterans with a patriotic salute to winning. We'll select one winner every half hour of up to $1,000 cash!" I mean enough to bring tears to my eyes for the many brave men and women who risked their lives for this country...and casino.

11:00 PM  
Anonymous JSRANK said...

Just think ...if we were a parliamentary system like (notso) great Britain and most supposed 'democracies' current; we would now welcome John BOehNER as our leader.

Where IS Rufus T. Firefly when we need him ?

1:23 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


But Ike was a commie, no?


They'll be saying that the *next* Democratic candidate will fix infinitum! I often wonder whether anyone in the US has their heads rammed as deeply inside their buttocks as Amy Goodman. The Left is beyond pathetic at this pt.


Love the way yr mind works,mon cher.


Hell, there are enuf illegal sweatshops in NYC and the rest of the country to keep Mittney busy for the rest of his life.


1:56 AM  
Anonymous satyaSarika said...

Dear Dr MB,

I'm finally convinced that you are right about the vast majority percentage of dolts in the USA. Although I admire your work, until today, I thought either you must be exagerating, or that you had simply had the misfortune of running into more than your share of American morons.

For background, I will tell you that I live in a small town in SW Utah. If the car breaks down people will stop to help. People are generally civil and polite. The politics are mostly right wing to extreme right wing as this community is historically a patriarchal theocracy.

Naturally, I had no problem seeing the right wingers as having severe cases of CRE -- and don't get me started on the pligs (polygamists).

But today, with the post election blues (blues despite the fact that I could not enjoy or participate in 'odes to Mittney'), I have realized what utter morons liberals are. The realization has been coming on since the beginning of the Big Zero's reign (actually before) but has struck me down with the force of the liberal gloat factor. I had imagined that by now, liberal 'friends' would hang their head and say they voted for O out of sheer disgust ('round here Mormons aren't popular if you're not one) for Mittens, but no.... people were actually chortling with glee for the victory of this nothing of a war criminal .... Now I understand why Chris Hedges wrote an entire BOOK on the 'death of the liberal class'. And, as you say, the Left gives the people waaaay to much credit.

I swear, if my gf dies before me, or we split, if there is any humanly possible way, I will escape this hellhole of a country.

In the meantime, I live a *very* private life with gf and dogs, venturing out to an Episcopal church which has a beautiful building, and some good potlucks, if not much else.

It's a lonely life to stare at a bunch of pixels for like minded folks... Even books cannot replace good face to face. I did have a wonderful friend most of my life, but she died 3 months after my mother in '08, so now, there is basically no one to talk to. GF tolerates my rants, but she is numbed by the prevailing SSRI addiction, so her critical faculties, are somewhat damaged. But she's very loving and I am lucky to have her in this land of CRE.

O & D.

2:52 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


It does take a long time to see that more than 99% of the population are jokes; 'progressives' in particular. To put it as politely as possible, they have braised goat turds in their heads. This is not a metaphor.


3:33 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...

Thanks JeffT – you talked me out of it. You’re right, Mittney ain’t worth it. And indeed, it is exciting to ponder the possibilities presented by Michelle Bachmann. Her penetrating ice-cold Nazi stare, her mastery of geography, history, diplomacy, and above all, Christian compassion. Not to mention her sex appeal -- Mammmmmma! I wuv Michelle too.

But I have to tell you, I dropped my iPhone 5 in the water when I jumped off of the rail back on the sidewalk here on the bridge. With no GPS tracking in my pocket, how is Obummer going to track me down now? How is he going to drone me out when my name pops up on his “Killer Tuesday” list? Hmmm... could he perhaps use that little chip that is now implanted in every US passport? Oops... looks like I mistakenly dropped that in the water too...

3:56 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

I just can't give up on the guy, I'm sorry. We need to start a movement called ComMITTment, to further his ideas in a post-election world. We need to organize the youth, in "shock troops" known as "Mittnite's Children," to proselytize and convert. And we need a uniform text, like Mao's Little Red Book, for millions to quote in unison: "Mittnaic Meditations," wh/I am currently working on. For example, instead of "Politics grows out of the barrel of a gun," MM has: "Wisdom blows out of the crevice of my rear end."

Our struggle has just begun! Join us! Join us!

4:54 AM  
Blogger Jack at CASCADIA ARTPOST said...

A sign of the end times:

Posted Nov 7, 2012 3:29 PM CST

(NEWSER) – DNA Info today spotted signs sure to warm the cockles of New Yorkers' hearts: "FEMA center closed due to weather," they read. The signs were taped up at disaster recovery centers in the city, meaning that residents who trekked there for hurricane relief were out of luck because of the coming nor'easter.

"The storm is coming. We don't know how hard it's going to hit us," said a woman in Coney Island who discovered that the FEMA facility there was closed this morning. "I need some help now." (Meanwhile, light snow already is falling, notes the New York Post, with the storm expected to last through tomorrow morning.)

9:28 AM  
Anonymous JWO said...

Think positive MB, our beloved Michelle Bachmann squeeked out a win here in Minnesota so perhaps something like Post-Mittney Bachmannism will be worth a 5-volume set?

Seriously though, you should have seen the dirty looks I got at the bar on election night when I said I voted Green and not for O-bomber ... onwards and downwards!

9:41 AM  
Blogger Reader said...

Apparently, we don't need Mitt to fast-forward to the end. Californian's just voted against labeling GMO foods. They want to die sooner, ignorant, unhealthy, and blind to truth and knowledge. This type of thinking is contagious and will escalate further deterioration of our food and our minds, it will escalate the raping of our environment and healthy food sources by the greedy corps. California just did a fast-forward toward the dark ages of America.

10:41 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Hi Dr. B,

ComMITTment may have a head start. I recall hearing president Obama state, during his victory speech on Tuesday, that he looks forward to meeting with Mittney to discuss ways "we" can move the country forward. When I heard this, I thought it a bit strange. Perhaps Obama has been bitten by the Mittney bug as well!

12:14 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...


Mittney had ideas? Now I'm really gob smacked. I somehow imagined that his appeal was based on not actually having any. Ah, but I see that you are already hard at work creating his ideas. Which is a really good idea and doubtless a great relief to His Mittness.

I salute your dedication and would join ComMITTment in a heartbeat, except that I long ago embraced the wisdom, conveyed by a beer swilling Englander, not to join anything.

Nevertheless, it would goose my pride if I were able to contribute in any way at all. Isn't there something a little too creepy about the name Mittnites Children? Unfortunately, at the moment my gob smacked brain can suggest no better than Mittkinderabteilung.

Cannot wait for publication of Mittnaic Meditations. Based on the sample given, I predict it will blow Mao's Red Book and Muammar's Green Book right off the shelves.

Mittney unter alles!

1:18 PM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Please all of you despondent b/c Mittens wasn't elected, dry your tears and put your faith in the liberal's never ending ability to talk themselves into anything. From Truthdig article by Glenn Greenwald:

STEP ONE: Liberals will declare that cutting social security and Medicare benefits – including raising the eligibility age or introducing "means-testing" – are absolutely unacceptable, that they will never support any bill that does so no matter what other provisions it contains, that they will wage war on Democrats if they try.

STEP TWO: As the deal gets negotiated and takes shape, progressive pundits in Washington, with Obama officials persuasively whispering in their ear, will begin to argue that the proposed cuts are really not that bad, that they are modest and acceptable, that they are even necessary to save the programs from greater cuts or even dismantlement.

STEP THREE: Many progressives – ones who are not persuaded that these cuts are less than draconian or defensible on the merits – will nonetheless begin to view them with resignation and acquiescence on pragmatic grounds. Obama has no real choice, they will insist, because he must reach a deal with the crazy, evil GOP to save the economy from crippling harm, and the only way he can do so is by agreeing to entitlement cuts. It is a pragmatic necessity, they will insist, and anyone who refuses to support it is being a purist, unreasonably blind to political realities, recklessly willing to blow up Obama's second term before it even begins.

The entire article is worth the time to read it and it ends with step 6, complete acquiescence.

"And so it goes. That is the standard pattern of self-disempowerment used by American liberals to render themselves impotent and powerless in Washington, not just on economic issues but the full panoply of political disputes, from ongoing militarism, military spending and war policies to civil liberties assaults, new cabinet appointments, immigration policy, and virtually everything else likely to arise in the second term."

Be of good cheer---all is lost.

6:30 PM  
Anonymous sanctuary! said...

The shouting has started.

If stupidity excites you, and you have a heart condition, you might want to think twice about clicking that link. Be sure to catch the comments section at the bottom.

To people outside the US, perhaps that story and the comments might be the occasion for only a small laugh. But to people in the US now (especially in "red" states, i.e., right-wing states), it is a snapshot of the horrifying (and, frankly, scary) daily life among our neighbors, friends, and relatives. Imagine seeing grandma join the secret police. Imagine realizing that she actually joined it years ago.

I keep seeing the number 625,000 in my head. Because the last time we had a civil war, 625,000 people died.

6:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Yes, a pretty gd description of the 'progressive' mind. The Left is so stupid, and so full of shit, one is at a loss for words. And they never stop: there's always a rainbow over the horizon. They can't recognize the illusion of it all, because this wd plunge them into massive nervous breakdowns. But as u say, all is lost, and that's a gd thing. Not that liberal self-awakening wd save anything, but at least we cd have real discussions (and I cd actually sell a few bks, ha ha).


Mittlerjugend any better?


They basically believe the same things. It's just the rhetoric that's different. Obama's chic, Mitt's an oaf, but the underlying policies are almost identical.

Jack et al.-

Never forget yr dealing w/dummies.


6:53 PM  
Anonymous Samuelle said...

It is being reported that Romney was shell-shocked after learning he would not be president:

That is strange because nobody in Romney's family have ever served in the military. They love America so long as others fight and die to preserve the country for them to abuse and pillage.

6:57 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...


Mittlerjugend,,,I like it.


So what your report seems to be implying is that with Millard II safely re-anointed the FEMA boys and girls are free to set their own hours. Christie and Bloomberg, used like rented mules. Happens to the best sometimes.

FEMA - Our motto, credo, whatever:

America, relieve it or take the day off.

8:03 PM  
Anonymous Dan said...

In some strange way I feel sorry for Mitt. I believe at heart he was a Mass. moderate but had to become a right wing freak show in order to secure the Republican nomination. I think he never felt comfortable as a right wing ideologue. Of course the way to beat Obama was from the left but not even Russ Feingold was psychically prepared to challenge him. Anyway, I'm sure Obama has already decided to betray his supporters and was fully prepared to do so last year had Sen. Bainer (SP)been able to tame Tea Party members. Yes, it is wholly wishful thinking Obama will now move to the left when he did no such thing when the Dems controlled both houses in the first 2 years of his presidency.Really, how delusional to think he'll suddenly become more than a toddy for Wall Street and the Pentagon. On the latter no one comes within a 1000 miles of the office without being fully committed to the Empire damn domestic concerns.Betrayal and obsequiousness are the true hallmarks of both his presidency and personality a fact people already sense but are still not ready to admit. Perhaps Hedges needs to write a sequel to Empire of Illusion titled Empire of Delusion.

11:41 PM  
Anonymous David said...


A glimpse of paradise, denied:

Romney "transition" website briefly online by mistake

It looks thrillingly creepy. Heartbreaking, really.

12:44 AM  
Blogger LJansen said...

Hey, MB, The Mitt is Witt Ya:

“Obviously the defeat yesterday was tough, but we’re confident we can get right back on track and win this thing in the end,” said Romney campaign manager Matt Rhoades, adding that the GOP candidate “won’t be giving up just because of one bad day.” “The country simply can’t survive another four years of President Obama’s failed policies and broken promises. We just have to regroup, reconfigure a few things, and continue spreading our message to the American people that the man to lead this country forward is Mitt Romney.”

“We’re in this for the long haul,” Rhoades continued. “So we’re not going to let something minor, like not getting enough votes in the electoral college, set us back.”,30282/?ref=auto

1:09 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

If I can chg the subject for just a moment, today I was in Kanazawa (rt on the Sea of Japan) and went to the outstanding 21stC Museum of Contemporary Art. They were having an exhibition called "Son et lumiere" (why French, I have no idea). For this, the curator, Kitade Chieko (surname first, in Japan) wrote an intro. She writes: "The economic, social, and other systems that democratic societies have chosen in order to realize human freedom have become threats to the very survival of human society." She notes that in response, many of the artists exhibited here "embrace despair itself...They see in despair the seeds of the future, and in the human condition an existence possesed of a life force that is fleeting yet struggling to survive amidst a maelstrom of suffering and chaos." Not bad, I'd say. I can't imagine the curator of a major American museum writing anything like this, myself.

6:23 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

I spent a few lovely days in Kanazawa years ago. I assume you walked through the park which is one of the 3 or 4 famous parks in Japan. Just curious, how does walking through a Japanese park compare to an American one?

7:02 AM  
Anonymous shep said...

Hot damn. Now there is a place to go if you find it impossible to learn another language and you are pretty broke,

Move to the "joint" states, Colorado or Washington where pot is now legal; up to one ounce.

Finally, a progressive move toward sanity.

When the end finally comes, just get stoned, and join in the fun!

8:13 AM  
Anonymous satyaSarika said...

Really like that quote from Kitade Chieko!

The Left is lame
Liberals dither
The right slithers
I embrace despair.

Just got a threatening message from the husband of an ex-acquaintance of mine because after she posted how enjoyable the "Left Behind" series is I suggested she check out a biography of LaHaye (the author) at

I guess I should prepare to die now as a 'feminazi' in his words

I guess this is what it means to speak to a knuckledraggin creationist truck driver. I'm going back to being an arrogant snob and not trying to be friendly anymore.

8:14 AM  
Blogger EditNetwork said...

A little postscript to The Haircut's meteoric Icarus flight into oblivion:

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The train came out of the long tunnel into the snow country,"

From Snow Country by Kawabata

I'm very happy to see you got to Kanazawa. It was, at least in the mid-80's, one of the most beautiful cities in Japan for me. I was lucky enough to go there in the Winter after a snowfall.

For many, the world of Kanazawa & back into the older Japan was an escape into something more real, away from the world of the encroaching western world of that time. As I recall, many people identified Snow Country as being set in Kanazawa if not literally then poetically.

The sound of the first few sentences in that novel are truly beautiful to hear even if you don't understand the Japanese words specifically. If you have any free time to have a Japanese person read the first lines from that novel I think you'd appreciate it.

Enjoy the trip in any case.

El Juero

11:25 AM  
Blogger Jeff Snyder said...

I think Arthur Silber nailed it with his explanation, the day before the election, of why Obama would win.

"So the point is that with Obama as president, the ruling class can screw you over about 20 gabillion times more than if Romney were president. Because lots of people will believe that Obama isn't trying to screw them. That opens up tons of possibilities. And the liberals and progressives help a whole huge bunch -- c'mon, give credit where it's due -- because when Obama wrecks whatever is left of the safety net, gives trillions of dollars and other goodies to all his best friends and, let us not forget, murders more and more people with those keen drones (and probably some bombs and missiles in a few select lucky countries before he's done), all the lefties (I use the term, uh, flexibly) will sigh once or twice, look kinda sad, and then after a while, they might murmur ... "evil Republicans!"

If Romney tried that same shit, the lefties would at least yell and stamp their feet a little bit. They wouldn't actually fight all that much, and they still wouldn't stop him in the end, but if you like a little yelling and foot stamping, Romney's your guy. But with Obama, everything is nice and quiet. Easy peasy. Just a few sighs of regret every now and then. The ruling class likes that better. You know those exclusive men's clubs that you see in movies, the ones where the carpet is a foot thick and everyone talks in whispers? And if you raise your voice even a tiny bit, a butler comes over to remind you to keep it down and, if you don't, he'll firmly escort you out? That's what the ruling class wants their entire world to be like. With Obama, everyone shuts the fuck up."

12:36 PM  
Blogger pinkpearl said...

On the cover of the Nov 2012 edition of the Canadian magazine The Walrus:

What if America Fails? And what happens to Canada if it does?

by our good friend Chris Hedges.


Anyway, the article itself is mainly about Scranton PA, how it symbolizes America's decline, with a few lines at the end about Canada getting pulled down the drain too. Which is probably right.

America is ahead of Canada, though, because some Americans know America failed. WAF got published, at least. I'm not sure a similar book about Canada would. What would such a book be called? "We hitched our wagon to the wrong horse?"

1:19 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...


Mittney's official photo reveals the depth that is, or once was, our Mittney! Look at that chin. Get a load of that shave. Look at that haircut. One can almost see Mittney's miraculous mind at work. No wonder it's so difficult to give up on Mittney.

Dr. Berman-

Insightful words and a profound vision indeed. This exhibit sounds very unique.

2:06 PM  
Anonymous Bill M. said...

I really do envy the Scandanavians with their small, highly sophisticated countries. I'm hoping that we in New England will be our own single country again soon... At least before I die. I'm a little right of center (and I mean by world standards, not USA standards). Still, I would prefer a smaller, less expensive country.

5:46 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...


Perhaps if CNN ever reports on the bit of news below, more Americans might "embrace despair" as well... Would you think?

"China to pass US as top economic superpower by 2016"

12:53 AM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Editnetwork--I had heard about Romney cancelling the credit cards on his staff--pretty unbelievable. Matt Taibbi summarized why the Republicans lost all those women and minorites:

"They have so much of their own collective identity wrapped up in the belief that they're surrounded by free-loading, job-averse parasites who not only want to smoke weed and have recreational abortions all day long, but want hardworking white Christians like them to pay the tab. Their whole belief system, which is really an endless effort at congratulating themselves for how hard they work compared to everyone else (by the way, the average "illegal," as Rush calls them, does more real work in 24 hours than people like Rush and me do in a year), is inherently insulting to everyone outside the tent – and you can't win votes when you're calling people lazy, stoned moochers.

Read more:

A long time ago as a freshman in college I took a course on children's literature and we read quite a few myths and fairy tales. The tale Odin Goes to Mimir's Well reminded me of the museum curator's remarks. After Odin drank from the well that gave wisdom he "saw all the sorrows and troubles that would fall upon Men and Gods and by being noble in the days of sorrow and trouble, would leave in the world a force that one day, a day that was far off indeed, would destroy the evil that brought terror and sorrow and despair into the world."

9:43 AM  
Anonymous shep said...

Seems the dolt-o-meter has vibrated to the left from 99.99% to 99.98%.

Just saw Cornel West and Tavis Smiley on Democracy now. They tore it up. Put Miss Amy in her place while they were at it when she tried to make a comment of Michael Eric Dyson's mean something completely different. Amy sort of recoiled into her shoulders and meekly rejoined the conversation a bit later.

She later played a speech that Cornel West gave (recently?), I think it was, at Northwestern Law School. I cannot find it now but I will post it when I do. West is another Frederick Douglass, MLK, jr., Malcolm X and better, I imagine. Smiley is sharp also. He just had Oliver Stone on with the docudrama of a new book Called, The Untold History of the USA., The only thing that bothered me about this show was they NEVER mentioned Howard Zinn.

Both are headed for a drone, unfortunately.

12:38 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

This blog has become my security blanket, now that we have lost Mittney. Thanking my lucky stars I stumbled across MB.

2:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


What a turkey Amy is, really. Still, by believing in Obama and America, she blocks real understanding; which will bring things down that much faster. So in an odd sorta way, I'm in her camp. Go Amy! Go Mitt!


7:03 PM  
Anonymous bartleby the Scrivener said...

Here's the West/Smiley interview:

7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Morris - you are right on; complete with an edgy style & humor. This is the kind of writing that grounds a nation in difficult times. Very "Ben Franklin" of you.

8:31 PM  
Anonymous Mike Alan said...

Responding to the quote Jeff Snyder posted:

"And the liberals and progressives help a whole huge bunch -- c'mon, give credit where it's due -- because when Obama wrecks whatever is left of the safety net, gives trillions of dollars and other goodies to all his best friends and, let us not forget, murders more and more people with those keen drones (and probably some bombs and missiles in a few select lucky countries before he's done), all the lefties (I use the term, uh, flexibly) will sigh once or twice, look kinda sad, and then after a while, they might murmur ... "evil Republicans!"

That's the beauty of this system from the view of the ownership class. Clinton, a Democrat, was an awesome Republican for the owners. He helped to shred all kinds of programs and policies that could not be accomplished by a Republican.

That's why I always laugh when my redneck friends whine about Obama taking their guns away. There's no way he will do it. I'd bet money it will be a Republican in office, most likely a nutcase extremist conservative, who will confiscate their guns. Further, he will have them so hypnotized or filled with fear or confusion they likely will hand them in willingly while wrapped in a flag and reciting the pledge, with extra emphasis on the "under god" part.

That's the beauty of this system. The slaves willingly participate in their enslavement, all the while talking about American exceptionalism.

9:37 PM  
Anonymous friarbill said...

i've read the 1st & 3rd of your trilogy' I became a franciscan friar 15 yrs ago. The monastic course. Moved back from Mexico 6 months ago, not by choice but I'm learning about that knot on the chord. I really enjoy your blog and perspective. A healthy challenge to create what is beyond the vista! Thanks.

12:01 AM  
Anonymous satyaSarika said...

Dr. mb & shep

Amy criticises the Big Zero frequently. Not many will give Cornel and Tavis the forum to speak. The only turkey there is the hope for a future in American. Can't compare to mittney.

One leetle remark about hastening the O & D... Dr. MB, I believe you've pointed out that the US when it crashes will be flailing around most dangerously. I think it's quite possible it will explode some nuclear weapons. Just can't see any plus point to that, so I can't really get on the Rah Rah wagon for the collapse.

Altho it's inevitable, it may well not leave any room for the monastic option ...

Perhaps I've misunderstood, and it's all just kidding?

12:41 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don' see the diff, because empires that die slowly, like England, also do horrific damage at the end (torture regime in Kenya in the 50s, e.g.). Either way, we're screwed; a process Amy can only help.

Friar Bill-

Sorry to hear u left Mexico. I can't imagine returning to the US, myself. Brr! Even the thought makes me shudder! Anyway, keep writing in.


As for Clinton: during his admin:
1. Gap between rich and poor got much larger
2. "Extraordinary rendition" (sending terrorist suspects to places like Morocco and Egypt to do our torturing for us) was put in place
3. Heavy deregulation (e.g. repeal of Glass-Steagall) took place, which ultimately led to the crash of 2008.


r.u. John/Pittsburgh? If not, pls pick a handle, as I don't post Anons. I suggest Rufus T. Firefly.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I went to Miyajima today, an island off the coast of Hiroshima, in the Inland Sea. Took cable car to top of Mt. Misen, from where you get a panoramic view of the Inland Sea. Whew! Beautiful beyond description. See it b4 u die. For a brief moment, I forgot abt Mittney--the experience was that powerful. Now back in Hiroshima, I mourn the fact that Americans will never learn abt Mittnism, or the Mittnaic Philosophy.

Speaking of Hiroshima, I'm reading probably the most powerful description of what we did to Japanese civilians on 6 Aug 45: "Black Rain" (kuroi ame, 1969), by Ibuse Masuji. Will go to the Peace Park tomorrow, tho am not looking forward to seeing films of A-Bomb victims. Required viewing for Americans, however; altho I'm guessing that most Americans have no idea that we dropped atomic bombs on Japan, or even that Japan was an enemy during WW2. (Polls indicate that most think Russia was our enemy during the War, and Germany our ally. The sheer Moron Density of the US beggars the imagination.)


3:57 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

And let's not forget to place Truman at the top or near top of American psychopathic presidents since not only did he begin what has become the national security state thus essentially starting the Cold War but is reported to have said that he didn't lose a minutes sleep dropping the atomic bombs. I also hope you have time to visit Nagasaki before you go. I recall that within an hour after the bomb was dropped there were already transports for the wounded out of the city. Why do I feel such cooperation wouldn't happen in the US?
Great stuff with Cornell West on Democracy Now. Amy Goodman's line, "Don't you feel you are being a little harsh?" has to go down as one of the great delusional remarks ever recorded since recording devices were invented.

7:41 AM  
Anonymous teri schooley said...

Oh, Dr. Berman,

Don't weep for the Mittster. Obama looks to be stepping right up to the breach. Here's some change you can believe in, if you like the downward rush: Obama stays in the White House, Democrats keep the Senate and Republicans keep the House. Paul Ryan gets to stay in Congress and Boehner will probably extend Ryan's tour of duty as chairman of budget committee (by papal dispensation):

Tax Cheat Timmeh is stepping down, so the speculation is that, representing Obama's *new* new mandate from the unreasonable liberals, Erskine Bowles is a likely candidate for Treasury Secretary. (Yes, that would be Bowles of the Simpson/Bowles catfood commission.) Well, okay, liberals hate Bowles, but as Rahm Emanuel said, liberals are retards. Wall Street, on the other hand, is notably not considered by the Obama administration to be fucking retards, and Wall St. wants Bowles. This is real change right here; Bowles is not a Goldman, Sachs man, he is a Morgan Stanley and GE guy. See? Bipartisanship.

Even more promising is that the possibility now exists to put John Brennan into the CIA spot, since Petraeus has "resigned" over his "affair". Plus, since having an affair somehow affects a man's memory, he doesn't have to testify regarding Stevens' little covert CIA operations in Libya and Syria. No doubt Petraeus is just relieved he didn't have to agree to a story about sex with one of the enlisted men. That would have just been harsh. See:

John Brennan. Formerly the torture guy, now the "disposition matrix" guy. Nothing like the unbridled murdering of possible innocents and the brazen acts of war on countries with whom we are not legally at war to get a man ahead. His support of "enhanced interrogation" under Bush? Forgetaboutit. How soon before we bring the drone wars home? Oh, wait, we are already in the process. Why, I do believe I see the matrix closing in on some Americans. (Which we will accept without protest. Such Americans must be bad people, why else would they have been targeted?) How long until we realize that the CIA and Pentagon run this country? They *are* this country. Just like a couple of big banks and corporations are pretending to be the economy, playing with their algorithms on Wall St. while the rest of us wonder where the jobs are. Never mind, we won't ever get it.

Don't fret, Obama understands what his role is. And he will get us to the goal-post quicker than you can say "Mittens on a stick".


8:25 AM  
Anonymous bartleby the Scrivener said...

guys and gals,

Sadly, I also wanted to point out that the curator-speak in Japan is identical to that in the US and around the globe... And those artists aren't embracing despair. They're embracing the corporate cash that has turned them all into multi-millionaires.

This Chris Hedges piece might serve to put it into perspective:

Note that artists like Kubrick (eyes wide shut), Genet, Barnes, Pynchon, etc. are attacking the sexual depravity of the ruling elite.

Then view how another darling of the corporatocracy graced with international museum shows is "embracing despair".... Note that It's the common masses who are degrading and debasing themselves here. NOT the ruling elite, who are more than happy to see human beings portrayed with a psychopathic lack of empathy.

Yes, this is what the degenerate radical chic left with their critiques of power are coming up with. Does anyone in their right mind think that the financial hustlers who support this are suffering from an artistic critique of the power structure? They're laughing all the way to the bank and boosting museum attendance, since who wouldn't pay to get into see these kind of spectacles? It's endless Warholian decadence, nothing new about it. As Gore Vidal opined, "Andy Warhol is the only genius I've ever known with an IQ of 60." An Andy Warhol goes for upwards of 47 million bucks.... You can buy a Courbet landscape for 400 grand... The art of today looks like it does because it's what the 1 percent want it to be.

This is pseudo-Dada... The Berlin Dadaist George Grosz barely escaped with his life from Nazi Germany, as his was a serious critique of the ruling elite. This neo-Dada is pure charlatanism with artists supposedly speaking truth to power flying around on jet planes from one international art fair to another.... all partying with the investment banking class shoulder to shoulder. A bad joke.

Anyway, that's how I view it all... for what it's worth.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous shep said...


I agree with you on Amy Goodman. She has done many, many good things, however, she is tethered, unfortunately, to her employers. I used to give monthly to Link TV, until last month when I noticed an obvious step or trend towards the right.

She is certainly no Cornel West though, and in this case, he corrected her in no uncertain terms when she seemed to take Dyson's side for a second. Maybe she was performing "balance"? To me, there is no balance when justice and peace are shoved aside. I think she wd be if her circumstances were different.

West recently has moved from the mighty sycophantic Princeton University to the Union Theological Seminary in N.Y. where he is allowed to say, write and do anything he wants in protest to elites.

ALSO. On another subject.

Petrayus, since he loves medals so much, sd be forced to sport some kind of a particularly obscene and eye-catching remembrance of his infidelity, plastered over his nine bars of outrageous hero symbolism.

10:55 AM  
Anonymous Dave said...

I want to write a book called American Liberalism For Dummies.

The chapters will be as follows:

1.) Waging War Compassionately
2.) We're Sorry About Taking From The Poor
3.) If Only A Social Safety Net Were Possible
4.) The Benefits Of Global Warming - A Speech By Hilary Clinton :)

11:26 AM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Shep & Sat--I agree that Amy Goodman is doing her best and any interview I've watched (which I admit haven't been that many) she actually lets the person talk, asks questions to clarify, not just to argue, and I'm better informed at the end. West hit the nail on the head when he said "everything in America's for sale" and just b/c she doesn't say exactly what I think is the logical conclusion---can this change? no are we screwed? yes---isn't, at least for me, a reason to diss her. I wish she'd have a joint interview with Dr. Berman and Hedges and maybe someday that will happen.

Bartleby--I'm reading Back to Blood by Tom Wolfe and you must read his description of an art sale to the pretentious and gullible billionaires in Miami. They're fighting over hideous pornographic glass statues made by an artist who doesn't touch his work. Very radical chic and no one can show them better than Wolfe for the fools they are.

Teri--It probably gets pretty lonely out there in the desert. I saw a picture of the lovely Mrs. Petreaus and I would not want to cross her.

11:54 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

Shep, that reminds me of something Mort Saul said. He happened to be in a room full of generals with all their medals on. He said it was very impressive...if you were 12 years old.

12:36 PM  
Blogger Reader said...


I find your perspective on art interesting, considering that it is my belief that religious fundamentalists have become what they fear most; evil. Their apparent power over the art culture must be their move toward dominionism of one of the seven mountains, arts and entertainment. It certainly fits in a sick sort of way, but sick is what they are, so no surprises.

2:38 PM  
Anonymous shep said...

Found the Cornel West speech at the Northwestern Law School auditorium.

Start at the 19:50 mark.

This is the portion of the event that has Dr West.

3:48 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

"Petrayus, since he loves medals so much..."

If there were any justice, he would end up like this medal lover:

7:34 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Well, Amy thinks Obama is some sort of liberal answer, and that the US has a great future, so in the face of such delusion it's kinda hard to be polite. In any case, I doubt I'll be on her program any time soon (sniff).


1:51 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

"A chicken in every pot, a car in every garage, and an AK-47 in every child's crib":

6:20 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...

The only way I am voting in this country again is if I see this broad spread on the ballot. I mean, with legs, breasts, and ass-ets like that, she’s got my full vote and 150% support of the empire until the Pitch-Dark Ages.

As far as Patraeus goes, I can’t really blame the guy. I’m sure humping camels and donkeys in Afghanistan was only moderately satisfying by comparison. Not to mention all that work required in dragging a camel under the desk.

9:51 AM  
Anonymous JWO said...

I'm sure someone already sent in Hedges' most recent article (

However, I found the comments most enlightening (if that is the word for it), Hedges is criticized for offering no solutions and those that point out that trying to change anything within the current system is worthless are attacked ... it just goes around and around!

10:30 AM  
Anonymous Joaquin Claro said...

Riding the waves of American and most likely Western/global collapse, we must do so responsibly. What should we do to mitigate the worst of the police state and global warming? And we also need a realistic but positive vision for what comes next after the Hustling States of America have destroyed themselves. Yes, embrace despair instead of the naive optimism you see around you, but we should also give something to future generations after having been so thoroughly complicit in making the proverbial shit hit the fan ourselves (it took long for me to discover what Berman discusses). Perhaps some Muhammad/Cyrus-like figure could abolish America and reconfigure its society, institutions and religions as patrons of both Anglo-Saxon and indigenous cultures, with an egalitarian and ecologically-minded philosophy to be widely disseminated?

10:54 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don't post Anons. Pick a handle, then I'll run yr comment. I suggest Rufus T. Firefly.


6:42 PM  
Anonymous bartleby the Scrivener said...

Susan- Thanks for that tip on Wolfe's latest novel. . I'll check it out. He also wrote The Painted Word back in 1975, an on target critique of the art world of that time. I'm also interested in reading Michel Houellebecq's The Map and the Territory, which he sets in the contemporary art world.

Incidentally Amy G has interviewed Hedges in the past:

I agree with the condemnations of not just her but the rest of the liberal class (like Thom Hartmann who has interviewed MB) for acting as enthusiastic apologists for the War Criminal in Chief. Now they're all scrambling to say how they need to hold Obama to account... just like they did during the last four miserable years. These people even continued to support him as Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emmanuel, called progressives "f**king retarded." He got that one right.

As Chris Hedges points out in his blogpost, it's simple gutlessness. They're all running in fear of the spectre of our beloved Mittney.

7:18 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...

I hate to dwell on this, but it is now clear why the Afghanistan surge and counter-insurgency turned out to be such miserable failures. Sure, the guy in charge was surging alright, just that he was surging under desks and on top of folder cabinets, not to mention in the back seats of tanks, Humvees, and Apace helicopters of all sorts. And then the woman-soldier he was surging into has the audacity to write a book called “All In”. Wow!

Seriously, how could possibly the army of “most powerful nation in history” stay focused on spreading democracy, fighting terrorism, and winning hearts and minds, when its generals are all so pussy-whipped.


As an expert in history, do you know of any empire collapse that was more amusing and embarrassing than this one? And, do you expect this amusement to go on for at least 20 or 30 more years, because I am really enjoying it.

7:26 PM  
Blogger Reader said...


I'm trying to be objective here, appreciate the satire, etc. Still, I found your post offensive, on a humanist level. None the less, having said that, just as I thought with Willie (no, not Mittney), who gives a sh-t who they have an affair with?? Not me. It happens and he happened to get caught, this time. Okay, granted, MAYBE she leaked a secret, but I don't care about that either, because it's all part of their game. But you, a supposed cognizant, well-read person have a choice of thought and opinion and in my opinion you stooped to gutter level with your comment . . . okay, maybe only to Patraeus level, but either way, you spoke offensively and derogatorily of women. Even in the deterioration of a culture there are still users and abusers (I'm not defending the mistress, she looks able enough in the biceps to defend herself) and women are still fighting for self determination . . . and your comment just threw women back into the last dark age.

7:40 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

It appears that secession is finally on the table. There may be a light at the end of this tunnel yet...

7:57 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

MB -- I went to college with Steve Hill at Fairhaven in Bellingham. He was the PC age; I was 40. Anyway, I felt bad when his book about Europe came out b/c it was exactly when the EU kerfuffle started (if I recall correctly). I'm glad you picked up on the optimism he created with his survey of European living.

Just finished WAF. As you acknowledged, even in America, there are possibilities of resistance to the tsunami of ignorance and evil.

When one of the anarchist kids who is being put into the slammer for not snitching on his compadres about Mayday mischief here in Seattle, at the courthouse his father asked me to look up (on my smart phone -- sorry) the Thoreau quote about jail being the place for every person of conscience when injustice is so rampant.

The 3 kids in jail are quite amazing in their fortitude against so relentless a threat -- Obama/Holder's justice dept.

8:02 PM  
Anonymous satyaSarika said...

Dear Dr MB,

Are you really serious comparing the toture regime in Kenya (horrible but political) to dropping nuclear bomnbs? Or a worse case MAD? (eco-catastrophe as well as political) If so, I can't help but think your time in the states has caused a tad of a warp in even a great mind like yours. Whooosh .... into the wormhole...

Regardless, I enjoy and admire your work. Am savoring what I have left to read. Even got your first book about Science and the Royal Society.

On the guns.... with all the nutters stocking up, I'm starting to agree with you about the necessity for an assault weapon in every kitchen ...

Joaquin Claro,

In case you weren't kidding about the wish for a Mohammed/Cyrus figure after the fall -- I'm not lookin for hero types following the collapse (won't be here anyways, most likely). Had more than enough hero myth!!! I highly recommend Dr. MB's fantastic book, "Wandering God", where he discusses the 'sacred authority complex' which somewhat encompasses the need for heroes.

10:37 PM  
Blogger Zosima said...

All the numbers aren’t in yet, but a couple of interesting points about Mittney’s not unexpected debacle are becoming apparent. I was wrong about Florida’s ballot being 4 pages long, it was 12 pages long. So, we’re all thinking, that was pretty smart of the Republican legislature loading up the ballot with a lot of long, tedious referendums to slow down the voting process and create long lines, and then cut early voting days in half. Brilliant move right? Then we noticed that the most Republican demographic was the older voter. So, which voter is more likely to stand in line in a cold rain, a 30 year old Obama voter or a 70 year old Mittney voter? So, Mittney loses FL by 70,000 votes out of 8.4 million. Nice move, bozos, you just handed the biggest swing state over to your Kenyan enemy.
Next. Everyone expected Obamas vote to be way down from 2008, and it is. But Mittney’s total is still a million short of McCain and three million short of Bush in 2004. This is astounding! Everyone expected the enthusiasm to be on the Republican side, but it looks like we have at least 3 million missing Republican voters. In places like VA, FL, CO, and Ohio where Mittney desperately need their votes, somebody stayed home. So, liberals, Euros, and other Obama lovers around the globe, thank that white, cracker, religious bigot who would never in a million years leave his trailer to vote or a Mormon cultist for President. That’s right, you’re all breathing a sigh of relief thanks to Cletus.

11:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Look, I keep writing the Pentagon that nuking Toronto and Paris is long overdue--we've had enuf of their insults--and what do they do in response? Nothing! So I don't think u hafta worry too much abt the US going ballistic, so to speak, in that way. Also, AK-47's need to be in every cradle, not every kitchen (altho why not both, come to think of it). What's a 1-yr-old w/o an assault weapon, really?


Hell, we may finally be getting somewhere!


Interesting stats. But the bottom line is that Mittney lost, and I'm weeping in my udon.


We can expect that the final phase, wh/is now upon us, will be both grim and funny.


Only partly, I think; he forgot to add "colossal douche bags," altho "laughable buffoons" wd have also been appropriate.


1:38 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I was encouraged by the hopelessness of Chris Hedges' latest post. I was getting worried that he was starting to believe America cd be fixed, but he's too smart a guy for that sort of nonsense. In particular, he affirmed something I've said a # of times: any populist uprising in the US will move toward the right, not the left. At least (like Mittney) the right has a vision. It's a pernicious vision, a dangerous one, but at least it's coherent. The left doesn't have dick; it's basically a collection of self-deluded jokers, as Chris has rightly, and repeatedly, told us. Look how lame OWS proved to be; push come to shove, they finally had no cards to play. Where was their Port Huron Statement, their political organization (which they bizarrely repudiated)?

As many of u know, Chris wrote a great blurb for WAF, for which I'll always be grateful. He ended it by saying he was lonely in the US (duh!) and wished I'd come up from Mexico. Chris, amigo: Time for you to *come down*! I know a few realtors here: just give me the word and I'll line up a few places 4u 2 look at. I am NOT kidding, cabron!


2:03 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


There's a video floating around the Net regarding Paula's activities. I keep wondering if irony is a lost art:

"Paula Broadwell, the author of 'All In' who reportedly had an affair with former CIA Director David Patraeus, spoke at the Aspen Security Forum about her access while embeded."

Direct quote. I kid u not. Embeded spelled as is (sic).

2:58 AM  
Anonymous sanctuary! said...

An American Tale

Eccentric Tech Wizard Wanted for Questioning in Belize Slay

3:14 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Doc Berman,

I went to your book signing in L.A. about a year ago. I asked you if the bilderbergs really controlled america and you answered "no." you then pointed me to a book to read to get my questioned answered. can you please tell me the name of the book and author, again?

also, what do you think of oliver stone's new showtime mini series "the untold history of the u.s.?"

if you give me your email, i can use that next time. thanks,

tuan lam

5:46 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Sorry, I can't recall name of bk, and I don't have a TV, so can't help u very much. But I'm at, in any case.


5:49 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...

There is much sadness in Chris Hedges’ words. He could benefit from leaving the US before he becomes permanently depressed. Maybe we should all come down to Mexico and establish one of those monastic communities. At least we’ll have interesting conversations. Until, course, this “liberal” Nobel Peace Prize laureate presidente labels such as community as a terrorist camp and drones it out.

Regarding the American Dream, I realized it was BS the first day I set foot in this country, 30 years ago. When I was growing up in Eastern Europe I believed the propaganda that this county was spewing out, and I internalized a compelling (albeit delusional) form of American Dream. Of course, that dissipated as soon as I got here and I saw reality. I still remember the burned down homes in Harlem, the homeless panhandlers on every corner, the filth of 42nd street, the violence, and people hustling everywhere. Despite its flaws, Communist Romania did not have those problems (it has them now, thanks to capitalism and “democracy”). I was young and pretty foolish, but I immediately sensed the insecurity, the violence, and the fear that defines this country. You can imagine the disillusionment I felt as a teenager, when I saw what the country of my dreams was all about. Nothing changed for the better in America over these 30 years. Things have only gotten much worse. The societal cancer that I observed in New York City 30 years ago has now metastasized across the country.


You’re right, I apologize to all women for my crass comments. I am ashamed of what I have turned into after volunteering a year of my life to Mittney’s presidential campaign. Every day, I sat at his feet absorbing the finer points of his glorious Mittnaic philosophy, I memorized all his orations about “binders full of women”, and I dreamed about the interplanetary Mormon harems awaiting me beyond Election Day. Today, I know he deceived me, I know he turned me into a gutter level male chauvinist monster. And yet, I wuv him so.

If I may share one more link about this "affair:"

You couldn’t make this stuff up if you tried!

7:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wall Eyed Mr Whippy says;

Listen you lot. You seem to have the right idea on here. But would you hurry up and DO something about your loopy country's drift into fullblown faaking madness? It looks increasingly crazy from 'over here'. And as the UK government is always brownnosing your White House crazies, it's double hellish.

The trouble is, your lunacy could badly affect the rest of us. I expect to hear 'The Horst Wessel ' song at your political conventions, as a norm.

The Brits and the Soviets slipped away quietly from their rotten empires - why can't you do the same?

I blame every one of you lot on here for Mittney and Barack. Sort it out fast, you bunch of useless, dangerous, ...splutter, sob.

11:27 AM  
Anonymous Savantesimal said...

It's spreading. Now the US commander in Afghanistan, who succeeded General Petraeus, has been caught in an affair with the woman who originally reported the threatening emails from the woman who was having an affair with Petraeus...

Pass the popcorn!

Huffington Post: US commander in Afghanistan caught in Petraeus scandal

In a new twist to the Gen. David Petraeus sex scandal, the Pentagon said Tuesday that the top American commander in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, is under investigation for alleged "inappropriate communications" with a woman who is said to have received threatening emails from Paula Broadwell, the woman with whom Petraeus had an extramarital affair.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said in a written statement issued to reporters aboard his aircraft, en route from Honolulu to Perth, Australia, that the FBI referred the matter to the Pentagon on Sunday.

Panetta said that he ordered a Pentagon investigation of Allen on Monday.

A senior defense official traveling with Panetta said Allen's communications were with Jill Kelley, who has been described as an unpaid social liaison at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., which is headquarters to the U.S. Central Command. She is not a U.S. government employee.


11:36 AM  
Blogger Reader said...


Perhaps this is early evidence of a populist uprising in the US coming from the right. In the face of current criticism and blame for Mittney's lose, the tea party has coalesced and moves forward! They are so far to the right they denounced Romney's candidacy prior to the election. Now we know why he lost, his own base had no faith!

11:36 AM  
Blogger LJansen said...

I know no; second posts, but doesn't this Mittney voter deserve recognition:

Police: Woman injures husband in political quarrel

11:52 AM  
Anonymous Chaz Homz said...

Why do immigrants always seem to equate NYC with "the country?" It would be nice if we could hear from someone who came to America via Baxter Springs Kansas, Scottsbluff Nebraska or any other small-town in middle-America. It makes a different when only 65% of the population have braised goat turds in their heads.

1:16 PM  
Blogger pinkpearl said...

Go easy on OWS. They're doing some good stuff:

They probably can't save America, but they might end up creating some of the new monasteries.

1:49 PM  
Anonymous twig said...

If u turn on the radio in the South, all u can get is Beck, Limbaugh, and Boortz.

Fortunately, I was listening to Limbaugh and he said with regard to Patraeus, "The Generals are now answering to their privates."

4:00 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Actually, that was the direction I originally predicted for OWS--a kind of permanent teach-in--and I said that wdn't be all that bad. Part of the NMI movement.


I suspect that everybody is having an affair with everybody else. And why not, really?

Mr. Whippy-

I agree, but there's not much that can be done. Yr asking 314 million turkeys to stop being turkeys--you daft wanker. Ain't gonna happen.


6:33 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

They got secession on their minds. Civil war's a comin' again:

"These days, you’ll find about 30 petitions from all across the US, requesting secession from the United States, two from right here in Oklahoma."

6:40 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...

Where would we be without a spectacle of the week? It does grant an opportunity to ponder a few obscure things of no great import.

The Generals wronged their women and children, but still get to be praised for all the wonders they have allegedly performed. Their wives are given their due portion of sympathy. The Horny Housewives of Southeastern America are described as sexy rather than adulterous, as if the two adjectives were somehow mutually exclusive. Where is the luv for the cuckolded husbands and their children?

Also, anyone know the job description of "a social liaison", paid or otherwise, at a military base? Just wondering if it might just be an americanization of the latin Castra Sectator (camp follower)?

8:36 PM  
Blogger Reader said...

I came across this article today, from last July, 2012, so perhaps this blog has already mentioned it?

Why America Is In Decline

The writer projects the complete collapse to be in the mid-2020s, but most surprising to me is that it was published in a mainstream mag., Psychology Today. I kept expecting the writer to reference mb; he did not.

9:34 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the ref. The day I get credit for my work in a mainstream publication I'll look up in the sky and pigs will be flying overhead.


12:57 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...

The interview below with Dr. Steve Pieczenik is the best explanation I have come across of what is happening now with the generals. As a former State Department insider he comes across as being well informed and his explanations are coherent. If what he says is correct, America has just entered a very scary phase, with open conflict between the CIA, the military, and the private military corporate complex -- basically, a coup. It is well worth watching to.

8:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Whippy.

Yes MB I am asking you 314 mil to get your finger out. Who else? You're the crazies. Or just keep the madness at home - that'll do.

As for "daft wanker", I'd say a bit more wanking and a lot less daftness over there would be in order. You should know. :)

8:11 AM  
Anonymous Stone said...

Here's a quotation from the Psychology Today article referenced by Reader above:

In his book, America’s Engineered Decline, William Norman Grigg, editor of the New American, contends that America’s decline has occurred because it is exhibiting the same characteristics of poverty, crime, and illiteracy and ill health that are found in third world countries. Grigg cites a quote by Mahatma Gandhi who said the roots of conflict and violence within a nation are “wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, worship without sacrifice and politics without principle.”

11:35 AM  
Anonymous Bill M. said...

Dr. Berman,

What do you think about the Louisiana petition for secession getting enough signatures to "warrant a response from the White House"?

Bet that'll really wake people up, eh? lol

12:42 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

What's Shakin' Wafers,

Add this to the Hustler pile Dr. Berman. Stating a need to get a jump-start on holiday greenbacks, K-Mart is dispensing with Turkey Day altogether, scheduling a 6:00 a.m. opening on Thanksgiving Day. Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, and Target will be opening earlier than last year. Celebrating the extinction of indigenous peoples is not enough, the turkeys need to go shopping before they stuff their faces full of pumpkin pie.

3:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I hadn't heard. What did our great prez say?

Mr. Whippy-

I suspect yr the greatest wanker of them all. Does the queen give an OM for wanking? Shall I submit yr name as a nominee? It's time u were singled out for yr achievement...As for the US, what can I do? I thought this blog would revolutionize the country, yet the 314 million ignore it! Clearly, a bunch o' wankers.


7:33 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...

I wouldn’t put much value on what appears in Psychology Today. That rag can be ranked somewhere below the National Enquirer, but definitely above the “[toilet] paper of record,” The New York Times. As a psychologist, I’m thinking I might be slightly qualified to appraise the quality of a publication with “psychology” in its title.

Mr. Whippy: I’m afraid your pointing the finger at the US can be summed up in the phrase "the pot calling the kettle black." Might be more accurate to point your finger at the entire West... and while at it, you might want to start with the UK. Just an idea to consider once the euphoria of the Queen's Jubilee finally wears out and the national hangovers finally subside...

8:55 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Hi Dr. Berman,

About two months ago I loaned out a copy of WAF to one of my more inquisitive Community College students. She expressed a desire to understand why so much had gone wrong in the United States and I recommended your work. She is perhaps one of the brightest students I have had the pleasure to teach since before the presidency of George W. Bush. That says a lot right there. Today, I found the book in my mailbox with an attached note. She wrote: "Wow! Just wow... A powerful voice of pure honesty and great intelligence... I see it very clearly now... A no B.S. approach to the problems that are destroying this nation." Not bad, right! I just thought I would pass this along to you and the wafers.


9:18 PM  
Blogger Reader said...


I'm about half way through Dark Ages America, so today as I also read that Israel had assassinated Hamas' military leader (which, no doubt will escalate things greatly there), need I say that I experienced your book in real time. A bit of serendipity perhaps, for me, but continuing evidence that further supports your writing.

My reading of your Twilight book was educational, but I must say that I find Dark Ages extremely depressing, as well, so much so I must stop reading at times. Thank you for your work.

10:05 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...


Griggs and Gandhi both managed to confuse cause and effect. The ills to which Griggs attributes the decline are the consequences of 3rd worldishness not the cause. The world is in decline because the surpluses have run out, never to return. Gandhi's "roots" are actually some of the dividends of successful conflict.

I respectfully suggest you might add Craig Dilworth to your reading list. He has pulled together a big pile of threads to help us understand how we got to be who we think we are and why it leads us to a bad end.

Mr Whippy-

Methinks it does take a wanker to demand that the 314 million stop it or keep it all in country when one of the principle pots of pustulence is The City of London. You've got plenty of cleaning up to do right there at home mate.

12:10 AM  
Blogger Zosima said...

Mr. Whippy--
Americans are definitely daft. So, why do supposedly intelligent Euros continue to help us spread our madness by letting us use their countries as military bases? Instead of beating each other up at football matches, why don’t you get together with Boris, Pablo, and Fabio and organize a movement to kick our warmonger asses out of Europe? Mr. Whippy, take a look in the mirror, if you can still see yourself after that tenth pint, block out the hooligan you see, and replace it with the bulldog image of Winston Churchill. With a little blood, sweat, and tears you could inspire Americans, and the world, by helping to close the US bases in your country. The world will not survive unless it unites to stop the horrible threat America poses to life on this planet. A global movement must begin around the idea that the US is a dangerous pariah state that must be stopped. Will 502 mil alcoholic Europeans sober up before it’s too late?

2:47 AM  
Anonymous ellen said...

As another of Queenie's subjects, I can attest that she only gives honours to certified wankers.

That said, we over here are watching the events in the US over there in horrified fascination (maybe as a distraction from the EU imploding) as whatever the outcome it will have a very great knock-on impact on the rest of the planet.

Still, in timeless Brit tradition we might as well be civil to each other even as our ship is going down.

5:55 AM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Familiar news from Roger Ebert's latest blog post:

As always, the comments in response are fascinating, reports from the academic trenches on the current state of (non)education -- particularly the liberal arts.

Just one such sample from an English professor:

It's true. The vast majority of students do refuse to read. I gave a three-page reading assignment last class. Two students did it. The rest said it was too long. Today, all they had to do was listen to one of Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tales. I knew they wouldn't read it, so I read it to them. It was a cop out, I admit it, but they had to understand the story in order for discussion to proceed, and it was the only way. After I finished, a student raised his hand and said he didn't understand any of it because it used too many big words and was confusing. It was "The Little Mermaid." It was originally intended for eight-year-olds.

The liberal arts are dying, in large part, because they require thought. Thought takes time and effort. This generation of students overwhelmingly believes there is something wrong with anything that is not easy and fast. They think the works need to be "fixed" because the books are difficult, and anything difficult is broken and a waste of time. Immediate gratification, whether it is in the form of fast food, random hookups, or blow off classes that produce an easy A, is valued more than anything that takes time, which means anything of worth.

We long ago reached & surpassed toxic levels of ignorance & stupidity in this country, didn't we?

6:13 AM  
Anonymous shep said...

I just met a very refreshing person that I thought might be of interest to some.

This fellow is 81 years old and was visiting a fellow intellectual (Old Testament scholars) here in Alabama, with my current best friend. (If I don't run him off with my mouth.)

This guy was born in Germany in 1932, so he was 13 y.o. when WWII ended. Propaganda began, he said, at about the age 9-10 y.o., gradually increased, and at some point, you were required to join the brown shirts. (The Nazis had outlawed the Boy Scouts and replaced it with the shit shirts.) He was an avid member by about 12 y.o. When the war ended and reality set in, he was horrified. He is now a Christian Atheist, as is our mutual friend, and a liberation theologist!

11:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am reading your trilogy out of order, and am finishing with Dark Ages America. Just read the -IMHO- brilliant discussion of negative and positive conceptions of freedom and the their consequences. Was very interested in your observations of how both conceptions when pushed to their logical conclusions end up as intolerable systems for real human beings and societies. It reminded me of something I hadn't thought of for a long time - Solzhenitsyn's 1978 Harvard address. There, he makes an argument that the democratic and individualistic theories that flowed from the Enlightenment and supposedly embodied in the "West" and and the socialist and communist theories of the Soviet block (the "East") were actually two aspects of the same underlying View of Man. Both, he claimed, and were founded on and derived from a materialist conception of life that proclaimed man the measure of all things and assigned human happiness (similarly conceived of in terms of "materialist development" (Progress!), as Man's Highest Goal and Purpose. Claiming that these two systems were really based on the same underlying premises was a pretty radical thought back then, when we were supposed to think that the two represented Opposite Forces and different conceptions of man.

Whole speech is here:

I wonder what you think about his observations in that address.

12:41 PM  
Anonymous Jesu Manu said...

America is Number One in many things:

* Americans rank #1 in being self-involved and in self-love

*USA Today recently reported on the body of a dead woman that was not found for approximately a year even though a whole bunch of people walked right past the car where she died....

*In an even more shocking case, the CBS affiliate in Boston recently reported that a dead woman was lying on the bottom of a public pool for two days while large numbers of people swam right over her. How in the world could something like this possibly happen?....

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Finally, I'm leaving a comment. I have read your books and I, too, have often felt lonely and at a loss in this world of dolts.

I just read the following, and felt compelled to send it along to your blog readers. It's about a firing range in Florida that allows their customers to shoot at each other -- the ammunition isn't live, but don't rubber bullets/paint-ball type ammo also do damage? The article stresses that women are partaking in the battles, too.

Here is one line from the article:

"A trip to Combat Shooting Sports costs about $150, which includes the cost of the gun modification."

I suppose that's a small price to pay for a "good" battle!

I wasn't exactly sure how to go about signing in -- I always use my name on websites, but I don't have a Google Account -- I have a yahoo account. Let me know if there's a better way for me to sign into your site so that I can post from time to time.

Best regards to everyone!

Kay Johnson -- NYC

4:41 PM  
Anonymous sanctuary! said...

Thugs in the kitchen
(I am not endorsing this product.)

10:38 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Hello Wafers-

Just arrived in Mex City this morning from Japan, via LA, where I hung out a bit w/a close friend, Nomi Prins. We had lunch at Canter's deli, thus providing me with my annual corned beef/chopped liver fix. She has been doing a lot of interviews recently on Obamacare as Corporatecare, and thus essentially dogshit.

I've been enjoying all of yr comments, even in the haze of severe jet lag, esp. the contribs of the British contingent. I wanna defend their rt to point fingers at the US. After all, even if their situation ain't so hot, that hardly gets us off the hook. But as far as this blog is concerned, we are wafers rather than wankers; tho probably daft nonetheless.


12:12 PM  
Anonymous Golf Pro said...

Long-term limey, here.

The pubs are all closing down over here, the politics are becoming more ritualised and vacant, people are becoming more and more mesmerised by social media. It's a kind of race in which the quicker we follow the US/EU downward economic trajectory, the more of value we are likely to conserve.

As for wanking, like most forms of manual activity, it's all in the wrists.

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Nate said...


It is funny how most of Ebert's commenters, an above avg group, have no idea that the LAs are not intended solely for the "big thinkers", but for scientists, bankers, lawyers, engineers, teachers, etc. --so that they won't just know how we do things, but might have an occasional thought about WHY we do things.

In contrast to Ebert, 20 years later while I was paying ~$4K/yr + R&B for my indulgences at State U, I braved subzero temps one morning to attend freshman comp, where my TA announced that we'd be watching a Sandra Bullock vehicle ("The Net") and writing a theme about it. I just got up, left, and immediately changed my major to Drinking.


2:44 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...


Hanging out at a deli with Nomi Prins ?
I think I gotta write me a trilogy or two...ya never know, y'know.

Here's her current text take on Obamacare.

If you scroll through the comments section you can locate some nice musical & comedy (but not musical-comedy) YT clips that I thought were relevant + amusing.

So, with alla dese Brits hangin' aroun' these days, do we have to change that Monty Python routine to "wank-wank, nudge-nudge" ?

Ciao B(erm)anzai,

2:59 PM  
Anonymous bartleby the Scrivener said...

Tim L,

I'm hoping that the Hans Christian Anderson tale was The Emperor's New Clothes... That should be taught to all students... followed by the Dark Ages America trilogy.

Reader, It's funny but my reaction to DAA, when I read it many years ago was one of immense relief... Finally, someone was writing something that exposed the truth about the American reality I knew so well. Given my awareness of how I've been all but tarred and feathered by everyone in sight by expressing my opinions locally, I can only imagine what Prof. B's experience would have been publishing them to a national audience over so many years.

mb... I find it no mystery why your work is neglected or slighted in the States... As Luke recognized, no prophet is accepted in his hometown.

Mr Whippy... another post out of you and London is going on the list of nuclear targets along with Toronto and Paris. You should know better than to try to point the fingers at Americans in any way, shape or form... This is your last warning!!! Plus, our soccer moms are tougher than your soccer hooligans any day of the week!

4:00 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...


I too have one your books on my recommended reading lists in a philosophy class I teach. It’s the Twilight book. I’m thinking I might as well include another of your books in my sociology class as well -- in this class we already discuss some of Arundhati Roy’s articles, and seeing that I haven’t yet got fired as a result, I figure, I might as well up the ante to see how they react. Besides, like Tim says above, it’s not like any of my students ever read anything, anyway.

At the risk of once again coming across as a medieval male chauvinist pig (which, as a good Mittnainoid, I am very proud to be), I just need to share these amazing headlines from the Petraeus sex scandal:

“In the Line of Booty”
“Cloak and Shag Her”
“War and Piece”.

Here are the pictures too:

6:11 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

It seems to me that Western Europe isn't that much different than America, politically speaking.

For instance: France, England and Italy were all involved with the USA in initiating the illegal and genocidal invasion of Libya, although Italy pulled out of Libya about a week after the war began. English and French troops continue to aid American troops in their dirty work.

Also: nearly as many European troops are in Iraq and Afghanistan as American troops. Many of the European countries have just as many troops per capita in those regions as America, including the Scandinavian "socialist" countries. The number of European troops in Iraq and Afghanistan has been steadily increasing like the number of their American counterparts.

Finally, Obama-esque cutbacks in social spending and increases in military spending are being seen all across Europe, and it's getting progressively worse. The Labour Party of England is really no different than the Democratic Party of America in this regard.

If anyone has evidence to the contrary of any of this, I'd like to hear it.

6:11 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Dr Berman-

Welcome back home! Glad you had the opportunity to go to Canter's deli in LA before you traveled home. Canter's is indeed one of the great places in LA.


It doesn't get any dumber/scarier than this! Americans shooting other Americans as a form of entertainment.

Sir Tagio-

Kind of connected to this and building on it is John Gray's book "Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia." Gray deeply investigates this Enlightenment/materialist/utopian/progress/improvement link. His conclusions are an eye opener. Please forgive me if you are already aware of this work.


9:31 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Don' get too excited; Nomi and I are just friends.


2:24 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

I share an office with an ardent right wing zionist who proclaimed as I entered, "The terrorists are attacking Israel!" Could someone please explain to me how an occupied people could be called terrorists? Not that I support the bombing of Israeli cities but international law allows for an occupied people to resist an occupation. Hell, Israel won't even allow chocolate into Gaza which was also true of the Warsaw ghetto by the way.
Anyway, it was great to see General Allen in the news. If Wafers recall I sited Gen. Allen about a year ago for his inability to understand green on green murders;that is, Afghans killing their NATO (read:American) trainers. Now I fully understand the fount of his ignorance. He was too busy sending E-mails to Jill Kelly to take any real interest in Afghan culture, history, or customs.I wonder how other countries are reacting to this story. Surely the Russians or Chinese might now be tempted to challenge American power knowing how corrupt and ineffectual our general staff is. I mean how late Roman Empire can you get.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Long overdue for Obama to send Mittney to the Middle East, to do some astute negotiation; and in the process, introduce the Mittnaic Philosophy to the Palestinians, which they sorely need.


8:42 AM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

There's a new series on PBS called Craft in America and I watched episode #402, Crossroads, last night. You might find this of interest as the middle segment was on pottery making and one of the artisans went to England from Japan to teach and then on the America for workshops post WWII. The potters made only utilitarian objects that were beautiful and original works of art.

I'll have to check out Ms. Prins writing on Obamacare as I've already had an introduction to this "improvement." Two years ago, right after it was passed, my insurance premium went up 35% in one month. When I called the ins. company I was told that the "improvements" added a free checkup and unlimited care if I became gravely ill. Since my policy was already a catastrophic one, I asked to simply eliminate these "improvements" and pay my old premium. Oh no, that wasn't an option and I could take it or leave it. God only knows what's really in that law when it comes into full effect next year. I think Americans are going to be very unpleasantly surprised. So----you know realtors in Mexico?

Julian--instead of this Petraeus/Allen thing being a sex scandal how about it being a "why are you wasting time and tax payers money sending emails to social climbing, vacant women and do your damn job" scandal? No where near as much fun so maybe it's not that good of an idea.

Welcome home, Dr. Berman, I'm looking forward to your next post and the book.

10:00 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Maybe u cd get me some info on the PBS series; I'd like to order the transcript, if there is one. The England-Japan pottery contact is very famous (Hamada Shoji, Sosetsu Yanagi, Bernard Leach). As for Mexico: I have med ins. here, and am frankly wondering if I'm going to hafta pay both for it and Obamacare, which I have no use for. I suppose I shd write the Soc Sec Admin, but I'm nervous abt what they are going to tell me (viz., yr fucked, too bad).


10:32 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...


The differences between the US and Western Europe are cosmetic. You may liken that to the differences between the Republican and Democratic parties over here. They really are the same. Western Europe built treasure by plunder, war, and genocide, and nothing has changed. This European Union “soft power and development” bullshit is just that – bullshit. So they will always be allied in principle and in practice with the US because they are one and the same. They will always join the US in the looting of places like Libya and Iraq because this is how they made a living for over 500 years now. That is all they know. For a while, the EU bullshit was believed, but lately they too lost all credibility. Especially after they descended like vultures on Eastern Europe after 1989 and plundered and destroyed those once socialist Great Societies. For example, in Romania, my country of birth, Austrian, French, Greek, and German corporations came in like locust, corrupted the political and economic systems, the media, and the education system, and stole everything of value (by calling it “privatization”). The only thing they understand is theft (and bullshit).

So, when you think of Europe, it is important to distinguish the East from the West – the thieves, the war criminals, and the demagogues live in the West. Just because countries like Romania, Poland, Bulgaria and others were recently coerced into joining the EU does not mean that they are like the criminals in the West. Also, when considering the West, it is important not to overlook small countries like Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands, because despite their small size, their level of corruption, theft and just plain viciousness is probably greater, by proportion, than what you have coming from larger countries like France, the UK, or even the US. They really are little rabid wolves in sheep’s clothing. This is the Western European business model: theft, corruption, war, and demagoguery. This is why we see Western Europe remaining so fully committed to neoliberal economic policies when dealing with the periphery countries – because it worked so well for them in the past.

This is why I rejoice every time I see another anti-austerity protest in imperialist-minded places like Spain and even Greece. I say, serves them right! They hit hard times now because the stronger European cannibals are devouring them, but until not too long ago they too were looking for others to devour. These same Spanish ad Greek "protesters" rejoiced when, 10 - 15 years ago, their countries' corporations stole vast oil and gas resources and huge state companies from Eastern Europe or South America. I am patiently waiting for the day when China, India, and Russia will devour the entire Europe. And, I am waiting for the approaching day when Eastern European nations will begin nationalizing the property stolen by the West.

The winds of imperial blowback are picking up strength, and Western Europe has a lot of bad karma to pay back for.


10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Whippy says

Thanks for all the abuse, it was lovely. I'm back for more. As for us Eurowankers having work to do over here, you're right. But as the US is clearly frothing bubbling mad and the most dangerous, you go first.

Someone kept referring to English troops, English Labour Party, English this and that. FFsake get it right -its the UK, consisting of different countries.

As for the Queen, many of us favour the French solution, once tried here, but then forgotten. As for W. Churchill, you lot always liked that drunken old right wing fart. After WW2 he was thrown out of office.

Anyway, you lot keep on supporting Israel in its Warsaw ghetto policy in Gaza. When you stop all that Israel support, our arselickers will soon fall into line. :)

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Whippy insists...

And another thing for you Yankee Doodle Dandies....

Here's the plan. Y'all read MBs 'Coming to Our Senses' especially the section on how life was lived in the south of France before they got burned on the pyre and rooted out. Yes, I know we slipped up there -it was a lot worse than Mai Lai.

There's a couple of tips in the book for our way forward - no more Mittney figures to hate, no more Queenie. We can cut off their heads or invite them for re-education. We can all live in the sun, drink wine and make love like we were promised in the '60s.

So stop singing 'The Star Strangled Banner' over there in the United States of Amnesia and we can all sing 'Hands Across The Ocean'.

12:24 PM  
Blogger Reader said...


Agreed, mb’s work does provide a great sense of relief. However, the momentary experiences of depression, while reading portions of DAA, are like the breathing out of a deep sigh, when a new layer is peeled back, exposing one to a darker and deeper breadth of understanding. And while I can embrace the trajectory of decline this country is in, it does not preclude or protect me from experiencing a deep sadness and sense of loss; and not for myself or even this country, as I was referencing my reading of mb’s discussion on the middle-east. The lives, the history, the antiquity, entire cultures, dismantled, raped and lost for nothing but the dollar, by those who are powerful, soul-less and inhumane; the greatest horror story of all time. I would guess that most of us on this blog are here, in part, because we are deeply compassionate.

1:45 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mr. Whippy-

I enjoy your whipping us, but in future pls post only once in 24 hrs. I know it's hard for a wanker like u to restrain yrself, but that's one of the blog rules.

Other than that: yr a daft wanker, and u need to work yrself up into more of a frenzy when you post. I love it. But I also love Mittney, and I think u need to acquaint yrself w/the basic Principles of Mittnism.

Anyway, I can't dally, because I need to stick a feather in my hat and call it macaroni.


8:45 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...


I couldn't have said it better myself. The collapse of the West is simply a result of karma, but the real tragedy is that the West is taking down the entire world, culturally, economically, environmentally and politically, in its death throes. Something tells me, however, that the people who have been oppressed in the Middle East for so long still have it within them to rejuvenate their culture once the West is out of the picture. I might be wrong, but I hope not.


Indeed, Western Europe has been so violent for so long that, basically, karma is causing Western European ethnicities to die and be replaced by neighboring Caucasian races (Turks, North Africans, Eastern Europeans, etc.). This is the end result of long-term evil: self-destruction.

I do think, however, that the Celtic countries of Ireland, Scotland and Wales are not monsters like the rest of Western Europe. Their past is mostly peaceful when compared to the likes of England or France. I do not want the Celtic countries to be destroyed.

8:53 PM  
Blogger Zosima said...

The American people are in about the same position as the people of the Soviet Union as far as our capacity to change our system. That’s why I’m disappointed to hear people outside America suggest that we can. The Europeans I’ve met are far better educated than Americans, and should know better. There has been improvement in their living conditions over the last 40 years, whereas, the opposite has happened here. But it looks like they’ve chosen to put an end to this trend and imitate America. So, to me, what is happening in Europe is even more upsetting than what is happening here. I expect extreme stupidity from my fellow ignorant Americans, but when I see Europeans following our example economically and socially, and supporting our gruesome military adventures, it’s especially disappointing. If the world is to have any hope at all, places like Europe need to immediately start becoming the opposite of America in every way. Perhaps Zero is right and it makes more sense to put our hopes in Asia, but the push back has to start somewhere, and soon.

10:58 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Here's a turkey update, anyway:

9:25 AM  
Anonymous Susan W. said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

The web site is and has a section on resources but there was no listing for transcripts anywhere on the web site that I could find. I didn't know about the England-Japan-America connection but there's a lot I don't know about the craft tradition. The series is very interesting and apparently there's a museum of sorts in LA. I hope this helps.

Petraeus is really the perfect general for this Empire of Illusion we live in. Who better than a soldier who's little more than an action figure himself to courageously turn a blind eye to torture, incompetence and participate in bribery? Who can forget the Congressional hearings several years ago when our congressmen spent most of their time gushing over his "service to our nation" and not asking one serious or revealing question. But none the less, it's nice to know there's something more than just raw ambition coursing thru his veins. Has he ever been in combat? I really don't know and wondered if anyone else does.

6:57 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...


Europe is quickly becoming like America. Long-standing socialist vestiges such as socialized medical care and free college education are quickly being dismantled by their neoliberal governments, leading to increasing levels of insecurity and inequality. There already are severe cracks in the structure of the European Union along the lines of East and West, with the southern nations beginning to align themselves with the East. Europe will crumble soon. I am just hoping that the West (Western Europe and North America) will complete their synchronized collapses in an efficient, speedy, and thorough manner asap.

And, by the way, in Europe too people have become hustlers, nobody has any time anymore, nobody reads, nobody jokes anymore, and everybody is worried and unhappy. As a result of the "Bologna Process," European college/university education has gone to hell in recent years, now being considerably inferior to America's higher education. As a result, ignorance has been increasing exponentially. Young Germans, Italians, Frenchmen, Romanians, Spaniards, you name it, are just as illiterate and ignorant as their American counterparts, and completely brainwashed in the Hollywood and the rap/hip-pop culture. It's totally hopeless. What can I say, Europeans are dolts too.


Perhaps the people of Ireland, Scotland, and Eastern Europe, who have suffered greatly over the centuries, still have the resilience to survive the collapse. Perhaps... I don’t know. All I can say is that what I observed in some of these countries is a young generation that displays extreme levels of entitlement, ignorance, and laziness. They are completely dependent for everything on their parents, and are not interested in anything other than having a good time. At least, their American counterparts are more hard working. Did I mention that they are dolts too?

7:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the ref; I'll be sure to check it out.


My problem w/yr assertions is that you didn't provide any sources for them. I mean, you cd be rt abt European troops in the Middle East (for example), but w/o any footnotes, so to speak, I don't really know whether this is true or not.


8:35 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...

They are completely dependent for everything on their parents, and are not interested in anything other than having a good time.

If we wafers 'n' wankers are even close to right in our analyses, I'm not sure I can blame them. Who here was ready for the NMI life in their twenties ? OK, maybe one or two of us (tops) are B&D fetishists and would have been ready for an early commitment to a lifetime of Prior restraint...

I am sure not all of the kids in the audience were dependent on their parents back in '82 when this song was new.
For better or worse, some were already hustling on their own.

Full lyrics here:

Live clip here:

The future's here
We are it
We are on our own...
And the politicians throwin' stones,
So the kids they dance
And shake their bones,
And it's all too clear we're on our own.
Singing ashes, ashes, all fall down.

OK, dance times over...on to some regular political analysis.

11:53 PM  
Anonymous ellen said...

European military involvement (regular troop numbers) in the middle east is actually decreasing, but the UK is increasingly following the US in sub-contracting out its fighting to be done by private contracting firms.

The next debacle is already underway, depriving Iran of a potential ally:

Carlin's sanity is sorely missed.

3:53 AM  
Anonymous shep said...

Discovered this ridiculous jewel advertising the "American Military University" on Truthdig Website next to Chris Hedges' article for this week of terror. Wonder if they give out metals instead of degrees.

7:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wall Eyed Mr Whippy says:

MB takes me to task for posting twice in 24 hrs - against the rules he says. Rules which are nowhere to be found. MB could save himself some time by posting blog conventions clearly.

He often also rebukes me for indulging in 'solitary pursuits for gentlemen', yet he takes a keen interest in this topic. May I remind him that these are the "simple pleasures of the poor" as James Joyce opined, and the more I'm mocked the harder my stance...oh yes.

READER - I like some of your post, but I struggled against retching nausea when I read "I can embrace the trajectory of decline" - come on, pass the sick bag! Those undergraduate years of seminarspeak are long gone. And you fondly imagine that most people on this blog are deeply compassionate - how do you know that? How compassionate is it to be called a wanker by our leader? You're next, I tell you.


The Euro situation you describe is indeed bullshit for the reasons you give. Some fools like me thought initially that the EU would be a balance against US terrorism and barking lunacy, but now of course they're at it too. Erratum, WE'RE at it, to my shame. We have an unelected Euro Commission, and in the UK this shit is compounded by an unelected, appointed House of Faaking Lords, and a medieval monarch as head of State. A Member of the Euro Parliament once said to me, referring to the Houses Of Parliament, "Oh yes, the Fun Palace on the River"? So you lot should 'stick a feather up your arse and call it macaroni' and go first in fixing things over there - what faaking chance have we got? At least we don't kid ourselves as you do that there is a choice in elections.

Bloggers here are moaning about the equal horrors of EU and US and dreaming up reasons for this. It's CAPITAL, gettit? Or in words that are understood 'over there' - "It's the Economy stupid". And don't try as Monica did to say that with your mouth full.
So forget all that mystical one handed adultery called karma - if you think like that you have no chance.
So, ZERO -much of what you say is interesting, some of what you say is totally barking.

MB charges me with being "frenzied" and that I should go for more of it. If I could be a cool sweet talkin' guy like him, I'd be pleased.

Finally one pointer to fixing your problems over there. Its all about cultural exchange. Mexicans have practiced this for a long time now, but MB is heroically reversing the process - he knows where the holes in the fence are, and is enjoying tortillas down there.

8:02 AM  
Anonymous bartleby the Scrivener said...

Speaking in defense of Petraeus, one of our great moral leaders and former Presidential candidate:

And if those wankers at The Independent are to be believed, move over Kim Kardashian, there's a new ass in town.

Reader, Agreed. We're the "greatest horror story of all time" primarily because we haven't just destroyed our own culture (to the extent we had much of one), we've largely destroyed European culture, which we were an extension of. I believe we've done this through the export of our TV and movie products, effectively promoting America as a hedonistic superpower utopia, all the while smashing our enemies by funding death squads, political assassinations, bombings, etc.

I'm not sanguine about any cultural rejuvenation in the foreseeable future given the epic success of our Warholian cultural triumph globally.

Zero, Zosima: As far as Asia goes, take the current Chinese art superstar, Ai Wei Wei. He's widely admired for smashing priceless Chinese Han dynasty antiquities, as well as painting Coca Cola in big letters over the antique vases left intact. Down with Chinese cultural tradition! Up with Coca Cola!

Here's his latest video:

As I see it, America's CRE behavior and military atrocities have no impact whatsoever on the popularity American Culture (excuse the oxymoron), which is imitated universally.

In short Wafers, I'm hoping I can count on your relentless pessimism! Chin up, mates!

8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff T,

Thanks for the referral to John Gray's book, "Black
Mass", I will check it out.

9:38 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mr. Whippy-

Where wd I post the rules, exactly? I just hafta tell people new to this blog what they are. Only a daft wanker such as yrself wd feel rebuked by this, or upset at being called a daft wanker. Yr working yrself up into a horrible sweat, amigo (literally)--altogether too much froth here (literally). We also have a rule abt no ad hominem attacks, but yrs are so *funny*, the more so for being hysterical. Normally I wd tell the person, "Cool yr jets," or just delete them. But in yr case: Well, I confess, I love yr attacks on me and the blog, for some reason. (I guess I'm just a cool, sweet-talkin' guy, what can I say.) Anyway, maybe some day you'll come down here and we'll share a tortilla and exchange insults in Spanish, which can be quite colorful. In the meanwhile, keep in mind at all times that yr a daft (and histrionic) wanker, and u can't go wrong. Frenzy rocks, dude.


On the destruction/commercialization of European culture by American 'culture', see Victoria de Grazia, "Irresistible Empire," for the classic treatment. I guess it's a little like the Greece-Rome relationship in antiquity. For a positive view of European possibilities, there's Steven Hill, "Europe's Promise." I do believe that the mess Europe has gotten itself into is heavily derivative from its decision to follow the American neoliberal cowboy capitalism model. It did try to resist this, to go for having a social safety net rather than self-destructive Reaganomics, but the market pressures were too great, and things eroded under folks like Aznar and Sarkozy. All in all, Europe has always struck me as being multidimensional, and therefore complex and interesting; it wasn't just about hustling. And when I go there, I still feel that some of that is true: the focus is on a lot of things, not just money. I do hafta add, tho, that I lived in England for 3 yrs, and I never really regarded the UK as part of Europe; it's just not 'gallic' in nature. Its decision to distance itself from the EU, not adopt the euro, follow Bush Jr. into Iraq--I never found any of this surprising, altho I remain a bit of an anglophile at heart. (You can't beat holidays in Dorset or Somerset or the Lake District, I tell u.)


I agree w/u abt Geo Carlin, but not to worry: Mr. Whippy and I will be taking our show on the road!


9:53 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Note to Katherine Scott:

Thanks for yr message, but I was not able to reply. I kept getting "Message Undeliverable" when I tried. Thought u shd know.


10:32 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


As it turns out, I don't post Anons, so u might wanna pick a handle and try again. I suggest Rufus T. Firefly.

Meanwhile, Attention All Wafers:

This just abt says it all, I think:

12:15 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...


Hedges did just abt say it all, but not quite all. He did not get to the nub of why it's inevitable. The elites have done it over and over since before anyone had the capacity to record it. One could ponder for a moment how the last of the Neanderthals must have felt. Knowing the Cro-Magnons were coming for them.

The power to extinguish entire species fell uniquely to homo erectus and homo sapiens. We eliminated all other humanoid species and practically all of the planet's megafauna, before we could write. We slaughtered them all because a countervailing reason was unknown to our distant ancestors. We continued on driving an amazing range of living things to extinction.

In a distant galaxy far far away and long long ago (well it seems like it was another galaxy) inhabitants knew little bits of wisdom such as, "what goes around, comes around." There isn't much left that we can get a rush from extinguishing, excpt our own kind.

Can we be possibly the universe's first self-extinguishing species? It seems so improbable, and yet...
I wonder if the Mittnaic Philosophy addressed this most perplexing question. Alas, we will never know.

4:46 PM  
Blogger Ort said...

Re: a serendipitous slice of Japan

My (older) brother just sent me a link to a 24-minute film about Japan's "Hikikomori"*.

He ironically suggested that, although I'm a 57 year-old U.S. resident, given my reclusive ways I might find the Hikikomori to be kindred spirits.

In case you're not familiar with either the Hikikomori or this film, you (all) might want to check it out.

My overall take is that it suggests that the United States and Japan are in many respects widely diverse nations unified by a common decadent technobarbaric culture.

Dr. Berman, I'd welcome your response if you have time and inclination to view the film.

NB: I notice that the not-so-Quicktime video doesn't always load on the first attempt, so one must be patient.

5:52 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Yes, there are about 1 million hiko's in Japan; check out Michael Zielenziger's bk, "Shutting Out the Sun" (tho I have some problems w/his overall argument). I did try to play your link, but got a message that "Windows Media Player can't open this file." Nuts. Anyway, we don't have an equivalent to the hiko phenomenon in the US, so I think some particular Japanese factors are operating; but then, they don't have the sporadic high school massacres that we do. Both responses may be ways of saying, "I've had it!" In addition, we do nothing about the massacres except wring our hands, and the Japanese gov't has been slow to recognize the hiko problem as a genuine problem.


Check out my bk, "Wandering God." We can't really know what happened w/the Neanderthals; there's a lot of spec now that they 'died out' via interbreeding w/the Cro-Magnons. War (but not aggression per se) is actually a Late Paleolithic phenomenon--i.e. from the archaeological record, it appears it dates to abt 15,000 B.C. Elitism as such didn't get translated into socioeconomic inequality until the rise of sedentary society and storage. As for genocide: it really gets going only in the 20thC (Albigensian crusades etc. involved fairly low numbers). And I think that the *level* of surveillance and control Hedges is describing is fairly new, thanks to the latest tech developments. I say all this because it can be deceptive to think that our problems are 'cosmic', true for eternity. There is something abt late modernity that is esp. miserable, I believe. (Mittney cd be part of this.)


9:34 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

Believe it or not, I see all hope of resisting being pulled into the hellish cultural/economic/political collapse of the West resting with admittedly somewhat rigid cultural traditions.

For instance, Islam, for all its faults, finally does create the possibility of a non-hustling society with a workable moral vision. In the end, it binds people together and instills values, and I know this from knowing many Muslims. Culturally ad ethically, they are light-years ahead of Westerners, despite the rather severe flaws inherent within Islam.

In the same vein, Africans, Asians and Latin Americans must rigidly hold onto their traditions and turn away from rap and Hollywood. I see this is distinctly possible, again, from knowing many people from these parts of the world.


I understand your anger toward Western Europe. Most of the world hates Western Europe for their violent imperialism and manipulativeness...but even then, some Western Europeans are not like this.

As to the reasons for Eastern Europe's ongoing cultural's because Eastern Europe adopted capitalism. Communism was horrible, but at least it imposed cultural standards. Capitalism has proven to be even worse in all the most important ways. As I'm sure you know, Eastern Europe is alot worse off under capitalism economically.

9:45 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...

Re: Hikikomori
Here is a YT clip that is easier for Windows machines.
Mine took a long time to download from LB's link...and then told me that Windows couldn't play the file.
As so often when problems arise, YT supplies a bigger hammer.
Note: This is part 1 of 2. Part 2 should show up on the right side of the screen.

Lest we develop an unmanageable guilt complex, consider Padre Carlin's sermon of survivability...

To update Bill Hicks' routine about our propensity for bad choices,which went:
John Lennon, murdered
John Kennedy, murdered
Martin Luther King, murdered
Ghandi, murdered
Jesus, murdered
Reagan, wounded

Trump, here
Romney, here
Bachman, here
Perry, here
Gingrich, here
Cain, here
Santorum, here
Carlin, gone

At least Doug Stanhope is still here...get him while he's warm.

10:41 PM  
Blogger Zosima said...

Sorry Phlog, MB is right. Hobbesian anthropology was propaganda so we would accept our ruling thugs as natural, it wasn’t based on much science, more like sublimated original sin theory. It lets us off the hook, so we don’t have to stop our current crew of planet killers. When the time comes to issue indictments for the murder of this planet, our nasty brutish thugocracy led by Queeney, Blankfein, and Mittney will be the prime suspect. And, of course, all of us, for letting them do it. All the evidence isn’t completely on one side or the other. But for major mega-fauna like Mastodons it’s looking more and more like the end of ice age climate caused extinction. Humans outside of Africa have close to 10% Neander DNA (interbreeding.) And Cro-mag just got released on DNA evidence.

11:39 PM  
Anonymous Stone said...

Multi-millionaire biz-man Mittney accounts for the zero return on the hundreds of millions of dollars invested in his electoral campaign:

"Trying to explain away his decisive, sweeping and very expensive rout to his disappointed supporters — those one-percent Republicans — Mitt Romney offered a new version of the discredited '47 percent' argument that was so ruinous in its original form. In a Wednesday afternoon conference call, the defeated Republican nominee told donors and fundraisers that President Obama had won by lavishing generous 'gifts' upon certain groups, including young voters, African-Americans and Latinos.

'With regards to the young people, for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest was a big gift,' said Romney, after apologizing for losing what he called a 'very close' election (he lost by more than 100 electoral votes and more than 1 percent of the popular vote, perhaps as much as 4 percent when all the state results are eventually certified).

'Free contraceptives were very big with young, college-aged women. And then, finally, Obamacare also made a difference for them, because, as you know, anybody now 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents’ plan, and that was a big gift to young people. They turned out in large numbers, a larger share in this election even than in 2009 ... Likewise, with Hispanic voters, free health care was a big plus. But in addition with regards to Hispanic voters, the amnesty for children of illegals, the so-called Dream Act kids, was a huge plus for that voting group.'"

Quoted from Joe Conason's "Mitt Romney’s Sneering Farewell to the ‘47 Percent’," Nov. 15, 2012,

And biz was his big argument for being the next Prez. Yikes!

11:41 PM  
Blogger LJansen said...

I've been busy fostering 2 pups and going to Gaza demos. Haven't been keeping up with DAA.

On checking back, I see from MB that Chris Hedges stole one of my ideas. (Ha!) My comment on "We are all in the same boat as the Gazans, so to speak. They are on the cutting edge of U.S./Israel policy right now, but we are all in their sights."

This was in response to a post about a real reporter who challenged Victoria Nuland at the State Dept about U.S. policy vis a vis Israel's bombing the crap out of Gaza.

Long story short: how can you miss me when I haven't really gone away.

12:23 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...


You forget that in a parallel universe, Mittney won the election. That’s also the universe where the Neanderthals won.

Mr. Whippy,

But it’s fun barking, anyway. Too bad about Europe, though – I have my home and retirement plans there. That kind of sucks.


The Hikikomori film played in VLC ( ) But I had to wait 30 mins for it to download. Sadly, the Japs look like dolts too.

I hate to be the one to bring this up, but Kim Kardashian had something very important to say today:

1:51 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the link. Since it's 3:30 a.m. (I'm still badly jet lagged), I'll view it tomorrow. Japan is a society of enormous contradictions; the hiko phenomenon is part of the overall puzzle, w/wh/I am struggling these days, as I try to sort out my notes and my reactions after 6 wks of extensive travel and discussions w/the Japanese.

In general, v. gd. conversations on this blog, as of late. I'm learning a lot from all of u, really. A lot I cd say in response, but I do need to crash.

Meanwhile, I'm hoping Mr. Whippy returns to whip us some more; ya gotta love a guy w/that kinda energy, n'est-ce pas?

And speaking of love, the more Mittney talks, the more I adore him. I'm not kidding: I wuv him.


4:30 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mr. Whippy-

Sorry, you can't be calling Wafers 'gangsters' and 'Vietnam killers', and equating us with all of the US. That just won't wash, and I'm not going to run posts like that. I know yr daft, but if u want to be part of the discussion here, you'll have to tone down the insanity a bit. I doubt yr going to find many Wafers (i.e. folks on this blog) defending Kennedy's attempted invasion of Cuba, or American involvement in Vietnam.


8:21 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mr. Whippy:

I *did* get it, and so did the Wafers. We are hardly seeking to narcotize ourselves. *You* didn't get it, amigo. In any case, if you can eliminate the hysteria, and stop trying to put us down or equate us with jingoistic rednecks, yr welcome on this blog.


9:27 AM  
Anonymous Stone said...

A prediction regarding Japan from James Kunstler's blog entry of yesterday in which he comments upon and assesses the Paris-based International Energy Agency's newly published annual report stating that the USA would overtake Saudi Arabia as the world's leading oil producer and reach the long-touted nirvana of "energy independence:"

"Finally, I have one flat-out prediction, one I have made before but deserves repeating: Japan will be the first society to consciously opt out of being an advanced industrial economy. They have no other apparent choice really, having next-to-zero oil, gas, or coal reserves of their own, and having lost faith in nuclear power. They will be the first country to enter a world made by hand. They were very good at it before about 1850 and had a pre-industrial culture of high artistry and grace - though, granted, all the defects of human psychology."

That prediction is followed by another one concerning the USA:

"I don't think the US can make that transition in an orderly way. We're too stricken with techno-narcissism and grandiosity. What troubles me is how we will greet the epic disappointment that waits for us when we discover that the journey to WalMart is over. My guess is that being predisposed to superstition and religious fanaticism, the American public will violently reject science and rationality and retreat into a world of shadows. We're already well on our way. The IEA report will just accelerate things."

1:13 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

After contemplation on American imperialism and cultural collapse, I have come to the following conclusion: the most terrifying aspect of it all is how cheerfully Americans vote for war criminals, how taking part in killing millions of people is seen as something ranging from a joke to a thrill to, at best, an inconsequential thing. This is a severe kind of disconnect, one that passes unnoticed in American culture because it is ubiquitous. And it is extremely terrifying.

It reminds me of one of the Nazi leaders Chris Hedges wrote about (I forget specifically which one), who loved his family and friends very much and cheerfully went to work each day, arranging the torture and murder of countless helpless Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, etc. He didn't hate any of these people; he just saw them as statistics, as objects, and felt whatever happened to them was a thing of no consequence. It was just a job, business as usual.

The same type of disconnect prevails in America, especially with the liberals. American liberals, by and large, don't hate Muslims. They just treat going to war with Islam - with literally over a billion people - and the death and suffering that result as something inconsequential, perhaps amusing.

1:18 PM  
Blogger Cloud Shaman said...

Obama gave crumbs and hope to his constituency. However, the biggest gift was to watch Romney and the Repubs go down in flames as Sugar Ray Obama hit him with a flurry in the last round to send him to the mat. I am in no means a supporter of Obama, as Brand Obama fooled me once in 2008. And after delving into Chris Hedges, Morris Berman, Joe Bageant, etc. I now actively pursue truth and reality. Sol Roth, played by Edward G.Robinson was my favorite character in Soylent Green. He knew the big picture and drank the koolaid. I guess he didn't hear about the Bermantown community in Mexico. I found that there is a transition and resiliency movement in response to Cheap oil being toast. Perhaps, these towns will house the monastic individuals.

2:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Whippy says -

Punters, you deserve a brief explanation of the last few posts, if you noticed.

I had a go at all of you, provocatively involving you in what passed in Vietnam. I included in my post some horrors of the British Empire. MB objected to this, saying I couldn't include you lot in these crimes. Quite right actually, but my intention was to say we have in the 'West' have done and do unspeakable crimes and what are we going to do about it?

But MB suppressed the post saying it was a bit much to blame the people on here for all that.

So I return to my question, buried under the frustrated invective. We agree everything's a crock, so what next?

3:00 PM  
Anonymous sanctuary! said...

MB, you said

"A lot I cd say in response, but I do need to crash."

Don't let us daft wankers turn u into a screen-freak. Wafers, of all people, understand when you have to go be a human being. These discussions can wait. We'll be around. Relax, crash, live. Give yr screen a kick in the shorts.

3:02 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...

I'd like to thank everyone that bothered to post the good news that our Neander cousins were not the victims of senseless slaughter. Our ancestors wuved'em out of existance. Whew! I can't tell ya what a relief that is.

I'm especially relieved to learn that we didn't wuv the mastodons out of existance. Please DNA cowboys, don't find any mastodon genes in our DNA. If you do, keep it to yerself. There are some things we don't need to know.

It's a little troubling that they had survived repeated glaciations and melts for a million or so years. But, I think the Neander mystery provides a basis for a theory. Maybe the mastodons, mammoths, et al, saw how the newly arrived humans were giving them googly eyes and saw what they had to do. Throughout the megafauna community the suicidal cry must have gone out. I'd rather be chopped liver than become f**kbuddies for those little creeps. Whaddya think?

So, why be alarmed over getting lumped in with the Gazans? Won't they and we be wuved out of existance too? I can think of worse ways to go. Lots of worse ways. Unfortunately, we were deprived of the possibility of dying of Mittnaic wuv. Sob.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous bart said...

mb, many thanks for the book recommendations. I will certainly check into them. Thanks also for the Chris Hedges link. I particularly liked the line: ""Culture is degraded into kitsch." That's exactly how I view it.

It would be interesting to know how much of that $5trillion in theft given to the banks he mentions is invested in the latest art bubble.

"In fact, according to... the New Statesman, over 50% of the most expensive auction sales of all time have taken place since 2008." (Nov. 29, 2012)

Sarkozy's replacement with Francois Hollande is certainly a good sign.

4:30 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Actually, I think I was the one who said it, in the Twilight bk, but Chris is certainly free to use it.


Anyone who mentions chopped liver (or deli meats) in their post gets a golden star from moi. My personal church is the Stage Deli on 7th Ave betw 52nd and 53rd Sts.
As for humping's too much of an image for me to handle. Wish I cd be of more help.


I've still got day and night reversed.

Mr. Whippy-

Thanks for being civil; we all appreciate it. But not *everything's* a crock, of course. Living in Mexico, for example, is quite marvelous, all the problems aside. Writing is not a crock, if it's honest. There's a long list of non-crockish things in the world, when u think abt it. All any of us can do is our best. But I'm sure u know this.


Also check out Edward G. in "Key Largo," in which he plays the ultimate hustler.


Chris and I were recently exchanging notes on his latest essay, and he wrote me that it amazed him how passively people put up w/all of this shit, as he put it. Here is my response (I'm assuming he won't mind if I share this w/u):

"I suspect that most Americans are unaware of the shit. They don't read newspapers; they get their news from talk shows; and they are not trained to notice things such as power relationships. They don't know what a predator drone is, or that the president draws up a weekly 'kill list'. (And they wdn't care if they did.) Most have never heard the phrase 'Gaza Strip,' and if you asked them they might say it's a kind of bandaid. (You laugh, but...) I wrote in "Why America Failed" that it was unlikely that more than 200,000 people in the entire country wd be able to follow my argument. Frankly, it could be less than 20,000. For the remaining 314 million, reality is simply what's in front of them that day, that hour.

"Here's how bad it is: a few yrs ago Jay Leno, in his 'Jaywalking' segment, went out into the streets of Burbank and asked people, randomly chosen, what the religion of Israel was. Answers included 'Muslim' and 'Israelite'. No one seemed to know that the majority population was Jewish. This is a kind of ignorance that one wd have to characterize as Transcendent."

In short, I don't think Americans treat any of this as amusing, or a joke; rather, I think they are simply clueless. Were u aware that 86% of young American adults can't locate Iraq on a world map? This is why I continually refer to CRE (Cranial-Rectal Embedment) as the core of our problems.


Thank you! I find the Kunstler comment very hopeful, quite frankly, altho the return to traditional society is not w/o its complications, in Japan. But I spent a fair amount of time interviewing craftspeople there, via Japanese friends of mine who acted as interpreters, and I was left w/a very hopeful feeling abt the implications of their work, what it all meant. (More on that later.)


5:38 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...

The US has had plenty of young adults living at home for decades. Check out the subscription figures for the top 10 online role-playing games at the site below.

The numbers are not up to date, but they tell us that there are on the order of 20 million gamers just for the top 10 games. Sure, many players are older and/or have jobs that take them outside, but I doubt we have fewer than one million hiko-Americans, especially in today's economy. Hey, we don't take second place to folks with only two colors on their flags.

The following is presented in honor of three American geniuses, one of whom has a reputation for reclusiveness. According to my understanding, he gets out quite a bit, but he's just not into interviews, so our media hang a hiko tag on him.

Here's a Nobel Prize winning physicist having a little fun in his Q&A session:

Here he is having fun again (don't recall if this is from Q&A or from within the lecture proper):

Here's someone many of us saw on TV as youngsters (he's still rockin' 'n' rollin'at 98...we should be so lucky):

So, the question is....
Was Irwin Corey Thomas Pynchon's first choice to accept the National Book Award on his behalf in 1973,
or did he just get the gig because Feynman was busy that night ?

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Zero said...

Mr. Whippy,

As far as Vietnam goes, please allow me to be the first Mittnoid to say that I am very proud of the fine humanitarian work the US forces have carried out in that country. Our napalm work with children was especially touching. I am equally proud of our good works in Iraq and Afghanistan. Abu Ghraib in particular was the pinnacle of our compassion for all to see and envy, and it does reflect the universality of Mittnaic Princile # 4: “Torture good.”

Mr. Whippy, I see that you struggle, I see that you long for belonging, I sense the emptiness you feel in your heart, and I see that you wish to join the Mittnaic Movement (MM), so why don’t you repeat after me this simple, yet effective mittnaization prayer:

“I, Mr. Whippy, heretofore and forever ever more, give my heart to Mittney! I wuv Mittney! I wuv him dearly! I wuv him vewy, vewy much! In the power of Mittney’s name, Amen!”

Don’t you feel better already?

7:08 PM  
Blogger pinkpearl said...

I once met a woman who had grown up in the USSR, in Armenia. She told me that in Armenia there was always lots of Soviet propaganda circulating, but everyone knew it was propaganda and ignored it.

In North America, she finds that there is even MORE propaganda, but more troubling to her is that most people don't even know it's propaganda. They have no psychological defenses against it. Easy picking.

No wonder we're screwed.

7:48 PM  
Blogger Elvis Lives said...

People who love Japan complain about me. but for me, it looks like there is no hope for Japan. Radiation keeps leaking from 4 reactors and there is no technology to stop it. Not to mention, we have no technology to clean it up. Next year, it will be more contaminated than this year. Supermarket is full of contaminated food and debris is going all around in Japan. No one in power is trying to stop
it. Political situation is becoming more and more like before WWW2, and economical situation is helpless because of the crisis with China. When JPY starts dropping off, I think that’d be the beginning of something.

- Mochizuki

9:13 PM  
Anonymous Mark Notzon said...

Dear MB et al:

Check out Thomas Frank's amusing and astute musings on 2012 apoocalyptic scenarios in his essay "Appetite for Destruction" ("Harpers," Dec 2012). He ends the article by comparing the present sobering mood to the euphoria of the (pseudo-)economic boom of the Clinton years:

"..The accelerating rate of change is no longer welcomed as a hierarchy-smashing emancipation; this time it's going to end life as we know it. The Internet isn't freeing us all; it's making us even more dependent on fragile technology. It's not the millenium that's coming; it's the tribulation. Doomsday, not utopia.
What's really remarkable, and really spooky, is how quick a trip it's been from one to the other."

-Mark N.

10:02 PM  
Anonymous Stone said...

Dear MB,

I look forward to your comments on craft in Japan (or elsewhere, for that matter).

I am hoping that crafts get rekindled.

I practice drawing, and I consider my activity primarily as a craft.

What is called art nowadays, or "contemporary art," as the art world folks like to say, is of no interest to me.


10:38 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the ref. Dec. issue is not online yet, but I'll look for it in a couple of wks.


Yes, Japan has a dark side, no doubt abt it. It's a very complex society.


That's a great mantra, really. If all of us wd embrace Mittney, we wd all feel a whole lot better. America needs Mittney; what cd be more obvious? And yet more than 50% of the electorate (only 60% of eligible voters voted) cruelly rejected him. As Mittney said shortly after his tragic defeat: "Forgive them Lord, they know not what they do." When I realize that we are saddled with four more yrs of a chic buffoon who's going to do dick, I start sobbing.


There are no 'hiko-Americans.' It's not just abt hiding out, if you read up on it. It really is unique to Japan. At least, so far. It means going into your room in your parents' house and not leaving it for, like, 10 yrs. Practically never coming out. You may not see your parents for several yrs; your mother leaves food outside the door. We are not talking about introversion, or being antisocial. This is way beyond that.


12:17 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Whippy asks STONE

Why have you no interest in contemporary art?

All art was once contemporary.

6:59 AM  
Anonymous Zero said...


I grew up in communist Romania, and then I came to America, so I experienced what your Armenian friend describes. Nobody in Communist Romania believed the official government propaganda, so we were pretty immune to its intended effects. I also concur that there is far more propaganda in America, which most Americans (and many immigrants) have internalized and never question.

However, there is another side to this story. During the 1960s – 1980s, the Communist block was being bombarded with American propaganda from overseas radio stations such as The Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, the BBC, etc. The sad truth is that most people in the communist block who rejected their own government’s lies, believed this American propaganda. The reason why people believed it is because this American propaganda was actually telling the truth. This is why it was so powerful. People knew that it was the truth because it matched the reality they observed.

Fast forward to 2012. Except for the US population, the world has now learned not to believe much of what American media puts out. Abroad, CNN, FoxNews, and MSNBC sound just as worthless as the old communist propaganda sounded to me back in the 1970s. However, enters the scene Russia Today (RT) and many other small independent media outlets. RT is today using the same strategy that America utilized during the Cold War: they are telling the truth. And they are doing this while the American mass media is shamelessly shouting lies all the time. Even if only a minority of the US population listens to RT (or other independent media), the same critical mass may build as was the case in the communist block a few decades ago.

There seems to be something magical about the truth – it appears weak, and it rarely shouts its message from the rooftops, yet it brings down lying empires pretty quickly. Ultimately, empire is not about armies or money – it is about psychology. But human psychology is not compatible with lies, especially when they blatantly contradict reality. By having positioned itself against the truth, The American Empire is doomed.

7:48 AM  
Anonymous bart said...

Pierre, if you haven't read it you might enjoy JH Kunstler's latest book Too Much Magic.

"The common denominator of idiotic TV shows, relentless advertising, and ceaseless consumer manipulation democratically overwhelmed and crushed anything even aspiring to be intelligent and independent, especially in thought. The response in the fine arts was alienation and irony. They divorced themselves from the tyranny of common culture and produced artifacts increasingly designed to offend, mock, attack, and confound it... Among educated people American pop culture was certain to inspire cynicism, as embodied in what came to be called camp: the elevation of the banal and vulgar to high art status. The intellectual damage has been permanent in a society that is now incapable of generating either sincere artistry or intelligent responses to today's great crises."

I wish I could take heart in craft revivals. Craft revival is going on all over the place here. It's going on in painting. I refer to it as "family values" painting, a revival of the French Academy. It's been on the rise for over a decade now and currently sweeping the land. It's the opposite of a renewal. It's ersatz culture.

10:29 AM  
Anonymous Stone said...

To Tom Goodman,

Just wrote you a lengthy answer, but lost it owing to some wrong move I made. May try to recompose it at a later time.

Suffice to say for now that you don't seem to be aware of the specific trends in art that the expression 'contemporary art' (as it is used in today's trendy art world circles) is meant to describe. In fact, the trends in question should really be labeled "neo-Dadaism."

Of course, all art was at some time contemporary. But that use of the world 'contemporary' is the ordinary one, not the one that prevails in "the art world" (in the world of Chelsea galleries, periodicals such as Art Forum, the Museum of Modern Art, and other temples of "contemporary art").


11:59 AM  
Anonymous shep said...

"Success is being well adjusted to injustice."

"Progress is Poverty"

12:08 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Mr Whippy says to STONE

Stone, to be honest, and maybe I'm thick, your response explains little* of why you don't like contemporary art - which you have the right to do, incidentally.

I thank you for your *larger response which was lost (it happens) and hope to see it when you've time.

But let me say now, my warning bells rang when you used the word 'trendy'. Are you a conservative person of advanced years? (as I am! Well, not the conservative bit).

However, there is another interesting phrase you use -'trends in art'. Yes indeedy, so much of art is mere fashion, and always has been so.

As you are maybe an older person, I hope you do not have hardening of the arteries, but hardening of art appreciation? I also hope not.

Someone in response to some irritating comment I made on art said, "OK smart arse, what IS art?"

Of course I replied, "Art is a commodity".

1:06 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings Dr. Berman and fellow Wafers,

Mittney was spotted pumping gas in La Jolla, California. Poor Mittney looks a bit dazed and out of it. What happened to his haircut? Apparently he was on his way to take in the new "Twilight" flick. We all know he's a corporate vampire. Perhaps he's a real vampire as well.

1:55 PM  
Blogger pinkpearl said...

@ Zero, Thanks for the interesting reply. So it's that thing of an outsider being able to see a society - at least some things about a society - more clearly than the people in it. In the case of RT, I've heard they are less-great at scrutinizing Russia than they are at scrutinizing America. But I have no way of knowing if that's true. What do you think?

5:09 PM  
Anonymous infanttyrone said...


OK, I read up a bit on hikikomori, freeters, NEETs, and parasite singles & couples. I probably set the bar too low for inclusion in the hiko category because of the numerous kids who were interviewed outside in the film. The harajuku girls, the otaku skateboarders, and the uniformed kid who would have preferred to be back in bed got more screen time than the 22 year old insider.

If there is a long slide into a diminished economy in the US, I bet some of those basement dwellers will get downgraded/upgraded into hikikomori. Many of them already qualify for freeter or NEET status.

If the US takes a more catastrophic plunge, then some of those basement kids will get to move upstairs after their parent(s) leave to become suicide bombers. Interesting to note that in this circumstance the Eloi are downstairs and the Morlocks are above ground. Maybe the result of some sort of geomagnetic excursion.

Was taken to the Wiki page for Harajuku when I wasn't sure of the spelling and noticed a pic of rockabilly dancers in Yoyogi park. Turns out the park is in the general Harajuku area. I played in that park as a 1st and 2nd grader a looong time ago ('57-'58). Don't recall any rockabilly activity, but I guess it takes a while for the Japanese youth to pick up on some of our smaller cultural tendrils.


Re: embargoes/sanctions
Limitation is the sincerest form of battery ?

6:54 PM  
Blogger Phlogiston Água de Beber said...

Sorry to pull the scab off an old wound, but some of them pesky science types, mucking around in the miasmic swamp that is DNA, seem to have found reason to believe that our ancestors didn't wuv Neanders so much after all. Sniff. What is wrong with our kind? We didn't wuv Neanders and we didn't wuv Mittney. Sob.

I still believe our ancestors wuved mastodons, but probably spread over several meals. Too bad they were unable to locate a good deli. We might still be able to adopt mastodon babies.

If you can stand it, you can read about it here.

7:30 PM  
Anonymous Stone said...

To Tom Goodman,

You're right: my response did not explain why I reject "contemporary art." It was not meant to do so. It was rather an acknowledgment of your attempt at communicating.

My response is somewhat long. I will then present it in two or three posts.

As I said in my first response to you, the phrase ‘contemporary art’, as that phrase is now used in the official art world circles (those epitomized by the galleries of Chelsea in New York City, institutions such as The Museum of Modern, and the scribes who write and propagandize for publications such as Art Forum), describes what should more properly be called ‘neo-Dadaism’.

Neo-Dadaism begins after World War II with the work of European figures such as Yves Klein, who distinguished himself by jumping out of the second floor window of his representative gallery with his arms outstretched, by throwing gold into the Seine river and delivering certificates to the rich folks who paid for said gold, by painting monochromatic canvases, and declaring these acts to be art; Arman, who burned violins, encased their charred remains in plastic boxes, exhibited the boxes, and sold them; and Piero Manzoni, who canned his own excrement, labeled the cans “Artist’s Shit,” and went on to sell said cans at pretty hefty prices.

This behavior continued in the New York City of the fifties and sixties, with the activities of Allan Kaprow, arguably the father of performance art, the Claes Oldenburg of Store Days, the Fluxus group, whose great leader George Maciunas stated with a perfectly straight face that “anything is art,” Robert Rauschenberg, who acquired a drawing by Wilhelm De Kooning, erased it, and sold the result as a work of art in its own right, and Jasper Johns. The Fluxus movement had an international character to it: it grouped such luminaries as Yoko Ono, Joseph Beuys and Nam June Paik, and the composer of as yet unrivaled silent music John Cage.

In New York, which in the post-war years gradually became the center of avant-garde art (see the book “How New York Stole the Idea of Modern Art” by Serge Guilbaut), the sixties saw the rise of Pop Art (Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg), which actually started in England in the late fifties, minimal art, land art (aka Earth art or Earthworks), and conceptual art. Among the minimalists, one must cite Carl Andre, the man, always dressed in working class blue clothing, who loves to order bricks and metal plates from his local supplier, have them arranged in certain patterns by his assistants in galleries or museums, and sell them at high prices to millionaires and well-endowed museums, and Richard Serra, who came to the attention of the art world by throwing hot lead around in galleries and selling the resulting splashes to the gullible moneyed classes of that time. Conceptual artists are a dime a dozen: as such, I shall restrict myself to mentioning its progenitor Joseph Kosuth, who blew up dictionary definitions, pasted them on rigid supports, and sold them in Leo Castelli’s gallery, and another one of its early practitioners, Mel Bochner, who measured things and sold the measurements, and wrote profundities such as “Language is not transparent” on the walls of galleries and, again, found buyers for those conceptual profundities. In the seventies, Earth man Michael Heizer, having had his fill of the New York art scene’s effete preoccupations, moved to Nevada. He has been residing there since, tirelessly constructing a “City,” where he reigns supreme among its uninhabitable groupings of geometrical solids and mounds of soil. One might venture the notion that Heizer’s solipsistic city is the end of point, the burial place of the avant-garde.


Never mind the state of my arteries or my age. Conservative? Try archaic.

7:31 PM  
Anonymous Dan said...

So does Gaza represent the US's long awaited Suez moment? Here is H. Clinton shuttling between Israel and Egypt but it's Morsi who brokers the deal mainly because the US is unable to speak to Hamas since the US deemed them a terrorist group. Now what major world power cannot and will not speak to a combatant in a major conflagration and still remain a world power. The US preemptively shot itself in the foot and except for brain dead Americans the world now sees what a sad pathetic country the US has become on the world stage.Can you imagine what will happen if now Hamas wins regional elections in the West Bank? How then could the US have any leverage in the region if it is not allowed to speak with a significant regional player? I would suppose at that point it will become clear to US policy makers that Israel is a liability and will move decidedly into the Arab camp thus ending a most bazaar western colonial project.

9:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Not yet. It's gotta be something that makes it clear to the world that we're no longer No. 1. This was actually true of England, economically speaking, even b4 WW1, but only became obvious after Suez. For example: Obama (= major dunce) is setting up a military (Marines) base in Australia, to 'watch' China. If China were to tell us to remove the base, "or else," and we did--that's Suez!


Too long! I can't be running books on the history of modern art, tu comprends?


Yeah, I've known abt this, but it's ultimately all spec. The consensus still goes to the 'interbreeding' argument, tho it cd change over time. Sometimes I think w/this stuff, we're just projecting current states of mind onto the Paleolithic.


Mark my words: in time, Mittney will be seen as a Christ figure. Me, I'm ready to be St. Paul.


10:29 PM  
Anonymous Katherine said...

Professor Berman:
Re "Kennedy's attempted invasion of Cuba"
If you are referring to the Bay of Pigs, your use of this phrase is surprising. That was of course the CIA's attempted invasion of Cuba, which Kennedy refused to provide with regular military backup. The CIA tried to roll him and he didn't roll.

I am grateful for your writing and your many invaluable insights but cannot agree with this characterization of Kennedy/Cuba. You know, surely, that Kennedy opened a back channel to Khrushchev after the Missile Crisis, in an attempt to end or "cool" down the Cold War, and also to Castro, at great risk. This is well documented, for example, in "Fidel and Che" (Bloomsbury).


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3:02 AM  
Blogger Scrathsay Blorpz said...

Hope everything is well Morris. Just commenting on this to make sure you know that I sent you an email. Really looking forward to hearing back from you, I hope you can respond. Loved this blog post btw

2:24 PM  
Blogger maria da gloria perez delgado sanches said...

Olá, bom dia!
Descobri o seu blog a partir de uma postagem (Por que os Estados Unidos fracassaram) em outro blog (, na qual, após o comentário sobre o livro, de sua autoria, conclui que "Há uma decência humana no México que não existe nos Estados Unidos".
O conteúdo é muito bom e, com certeza, lerei o livro.
O seu blog é fantástico! Sou, desde já, seguidora. Continue escrevendo, você desenvolve um trabalho notável.

Faça uma visita aos blogs disponíveis no meu perfil: artigos e anotações sobre questões de Direito, português, poemas e crônicas ("causos"): Esteja à vontade para perguntar, comentar, questionar ou criticar. Acompanhe.Terei muito prazer em recebê-lo.

Você pode acompanhar as publicações seguindo os blogs (Seguidores) ou sendo um membro (Seja um membro). Também existe a opção seguir por e-mail (Follow by Email).
Thanks for the comment. Feel free to comment, ask questions or criticize. A great day and a great week!

Estarei em férias até 6 de janeiro.
Desejo, desde já, um excelente ano novo, pleno de realizações!

Maria da Glória Perez Delgado Sanches
Membro Correspondente da ACLAC – Academia Cabista de Letras, Artes e Ciências de Arraial do Cabo, RJ.

8:13 AM  

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