December 12, 2020


Well, Wafers, I'm still working on Part II, but it's a struggle. E.g., I fall into Kim's anus like Alice down the rabbit hole; during my descent, I pass by Tulsi, Ging (Newtrich), Dan Quayle, and other illuminati, including a cluster of Karens; and at last have lunch with Meghan Markle, who is wearing a very chic hat, but who bores me to death. I dunno; I think I may be losing my creative edge.

Anyway, we've had some good discussion up to now, watching Trumpi embarrass himself, the bubbas strutting around (impotently), and the vaccine finally making an appearance as thousands of Americans continue to die. I think this virus is going to be a life-changer; it may never be over, and it could well mutate into more virulent forms. Everyone in a mask: it looks like a scene in a dystopian sci-fi movie. And then literally millions of Americans living in an alternative reality, guaranteeing that the country has no real future. Older Wafers scratch their heads, wondering what happened to the US of their childhood, while savvy younger Wafers are clued to staying outside of the Matrix. Fun times, eh?



Anonymous MarshallG said...

Hi - I'd like to thank Ordinary Indian for his thoughtful researched response to my comment about GMO's and India which I first learned about when reading the criticisms of the Uruguayan WTO GATT rounds somewhere in the 90's. I agree, these agricultural technologies coupled with trans-national laws really do chip away at liberties. Otherwise, carry on in this grim world.

1:19 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Check out "Defiance," by Philip Deloria, in Nov. 2 New Yorker. He really shows how hustling ("the pursuit of happiness") was at the core of America from Day 1. Regarding George Washington, for example: He was "one of the most aggressive landowners in the early republic, holding title, at the time of his death, to more than fifty thousand acres across several states."


1:39 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don't post Unknowns. If you want to participate, you need a real handle. Thank you.


6:50 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

That's my gal:

6:57 AM  
Anonymous Anjin-San said...

I heartily support Dan Daniels woke recommendation (from the last post):

"Given the staggering number of USians who will need to be soaked in feces of some form, and given that this soaking should be available to all genders, I propose that manure spreaders or smaller versions spraying cow manure be an acceptable treatment."

Besides gender, it also addresses serious issues of ageism.

I have yearned to express my disdain for the current Alberta party in in power, the appropriately monikered "UCP". (For those of you unfamiliar with Alberta, Canada we are affectionately known in the oil business as the Texas of Canada.)

However being a senior with the attendant prostrate problems of age I have been unable to do so. I can now look forward to the time when armed with a smaller manure spreader I can express my disdain from the visitors gallery of our legislature.

And then on the evening news UCP will have an entirely new meaning!

7:12 AM  
Anonymous Amadeus said...

Just started this: "Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents" by Isabel Wilkerson

Extremely well written and it compares caste systems in India, Nazi Germany and the US. Is that comparison apt? Does it apply to the US of today? Dor blacks in, say, pre 1960s, it sure does.

Next I'll be reading JD Vance's "The Hillbilly Elegy" -- where the emphasis is on class (race obviously wasn't the issue) which makes more sense for there to be such a caste system in the US. Here the rich blacks exploit the poor ones, et al.

8:41 AM  
Anonymous Hans Castorp said...

Great essay by Jenny Odell on Emerson and the Myth of Self-Reliance:

8:56 AM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

"Stupidity excites me" dept:
Media: Ignorant or worse? Hit pieces on Nation's Best Doctors taken apart
The hit pieces by the media against some of the best Doctors and scientists in the US reaffirm the following quote that I have posted here before: “We’ve arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology. We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces.”
— Carl Sagan


10:26 AM  
Anonymous Cherith Cutestory said...

(1) Remember Milli Vanilli? They got big and got a Grammy in 1990. Then it was discovered they weren't the ones singing on their album, so they were stripped. They displayed remorse, but they were finished. One of them spiraled out of control and died in an overdose. I see Obama's book set sales records, and Barry is swimming in money. He got a Nobel peace prize, and even though he slaughtered scores of innocent people with his drone strikes and covert ops, his prize was never rescinded. Western values: "plagiarism and cheating are wrong! Mass murder is ok."

(2) Studying Islamic jurisprudence (curiosity). Cleared up Western media propaganda. In Sharia there's a principle called "seeking doubts to avoid punishments": if someone is accused of a crime, prosecutors should seek reasonable doubts to avoid punishing this person. You all know the famous Don't Talk to the Police by Prof. James Duane. Superb video about how the 5th amendment protects innocent people, and saying anything to US cops (even if true, non-incriminating and you are 100% innocent) could get you crucified in the US justice system, which operates in total opposition to Sharia: seek anything to punish even the innocent. He wrote a book explaining that today even your silence can incriminate you.

(3) Suggested reading to Wafers: German diplomat and author Murad Hofmann's Islam the Alternative.

11:05 AM  
Anonymous Special-K said...

Caste-like behavior for me, although it reflects a dominance hierarchy that pathological people usually seemingly always occupy at the top, for example corp culture reflects gang culture, caste for me implies a more racist, tribal, ethnocentric strategy.

The Brahmins sit at the top of Indias' caste system and seem to think they are of a superior race than Punjabi, Tamil, Tuluga, Sikhs, the poor Dalit at the bottom (untouchables) - IMO. India brings the caste system where-ever they go which subverts IT institutions and lobbies in the US.

Arab cultures are very ethnocentric but also very conservative or orthodox being against usury etc. Europeans seem to be less ethnocentric but value dominance hierarchy "success" like in the corp world. Interesting book suggestion - there are parallels. You might compare the ideas of Dr. Kevin Macdonald where his books explore Middle Eastern ethnic evolutionary group strategies compared to European group strategies which he shows tend to be far less cohesive. Anyway Amadeus thanks for the book mention.

3:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Links? Evidence?


3:49 PM  
Anonymous Krakhed said...

We are drowning in feces:

In PA, restaurants are shutting down again. I just wonder who is going to be able to pay rent soon. Seems like just a matter of time before homeless encampments start popping up all over.

Healthcare facilities overburdened:

Maybe it's just nature paying us back for living like we have infinite earths to deplete

4:15 PM  
Blogger Marc L Bernstein said...

We are very likely to see some serious politically-motivated violence in the USA over the next few months, and it's hard to envision this confused, hateful, enraged violence entirely going away. Homicidally enraged Trump supporters are making death threats to other "less loyal" Republicans, and these threats should be taken seriously at least because of their provocative influence. There are a lot of disturbed people in the USA, and it doesn't take much to provoke them. The Republican Party of Arizona asked its members if they were willing to die to resist the results of the presidential election.

Thom Hartmann comments for a few minutes on these threats.

"This is America right now" says Hartmann.
"The Republican Party has merged into what we have always known as the hard right in this country - the Klan, the Nazis, ..."
"Pro Trump shadow group is targeting officials for assassination, in a tangible step toward terrorism."

What a wonderful country we live in?

5:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


We may be heading toward martial law, something I've been predicting all along. One way for the US to collapse is in an orgy of violence, and the Trumpites are insane enuf to go fucking nuts, at the Biden inauguration and elsewhere. Of course, from a declinist pt of view, this is one among several scenarios for the collapse of the country, and thus, in a strange way, welcome. But the phenomenon of glazed eyes, of ranting and raving, is a thing to behold. Trumpi can hardly believe that the election was fraudulent, but his supporters certainly do, and that cd be as numerous as 74 million. If I remember correctly, when Trumpi was inaugurated, there were groups that held a (nonviolent) "counter-inauguration" not far away. Which means that at any one time--really, from the days of Bush Jr.--half the country regards the government as illegitimate. Rt now, there doesn't seem any way out of what is a very unstable situation.

As for "disturbed people," I have a feeling this applies to most Americans, esp. now in the wake of covid and its fallout. Very short fuses; ready to explode at the slightest touch. Anyway, as you say, the next few mos. shd prove to be "interesting."


6:33 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...
Is it too late to add more right-wingers to this court?
Why not have the presidents supplied by a temporary
employment agency, similar to the hosts on "Saturday
Night Live"?

8:02 PM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Anjin-San, I ran across thise squirt gun, called Super Soaker Zombie Strike. Is there any better name? This model even comes in white, red, and green, flag colors of both Mexicao and Italy (maybe consider the orange a crude indicator of contents?)-

As the description says- "drench the competition with single streams, monstrous monsoons, and almost any floodtastic blast in between!"

And the opening for filling is large. Without a constant supply of beer, people male and female will probably need to bring extra supplies.

In both DC and Olympia, Washington, violent right-wing groups are on the march today-
(reports say that the Olympia report is both-siding what was a right-wing assault)

8:31 PM  
Anonymous Marielle said...

Qu’est-ce qu’une nation ? What kind of "society" do I live in? I recently came across this comparative survey of values:

Among the regions surveyed, Americans rank community below all other regions, and education comes in dead last. On the other hand, they rank the value of material possessions and authority (so much for all that "freedom" they keep harping about) near the top. Nothing we didn't already know, of course. Sounds like a recipe for a nation of narcissists and sociopaths...

8:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Also douche bags and buffoons. Check out WAF for elaboration of these data.


8:55 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Diversity ueber Alles!:

9:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


As the country limps toward Jan. 20, the question we have to contemplate is: Can we avoid ἐκπύρωσις? (ecpyrosis) What will happen on that fateful day, if the forces of Tulsi Gabbard come head to head with those of Reince Priebus? All of America is holding its breath.


11:40 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Read "Man's Search For Meaning" by Viktor Frankl today. I kept hearing about it lately so figured it must be good and it is. There are apparently 3 "branches" of psychotherapy: Freudism in which the meaning of life is the pursuit of pleasure, Adler's theory that life is about the pursuit of power, and Frankl's Logotherapy which postulates that life is about the pursuit of meaning.

Frankl worked for several years with suicidal patients and had worked out his theory well before he was sent off to the camps. His experiences in the camps just confirmed them.

And what are Americans all about? Pursuit of pleasure/things and pursuit of power. If you pursue meaning, most will think you a sucker.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Well, for Americans pleasure and power *are* the meaning of life. Which issues out in an empty life, however. Trump is us, really.


3:15 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Greetings all and Happy Karen Sunday. Here are some more fine American ladies in Episode 20 at their best.

5:52 AM  
Anonymous Rohan Feeney said...

"How a New Hampshire libertarian utopia was foiled by bears
Seriously, this happened. You should absolutely read about it."

This is awesome. Have meant to read the book about this, as well as the book on the fallacies of libertarianism that MB has recommended in the past, "Freedom" By J Franzen.

11:17 AM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

@Alex, read it last year. It was a startling read for me. How can someone, who has gone through the horror of Auschwitz, talk of that experience in such an apparently dispassionate language! But then, if you find a meaning even in that ...

This is on a very personal note. In the second part of the book he talks about using logo therapy to cure disorders, one of which is dystonia. Since I suffer from a rather bad form of task specific dystonia (while writing) I wondered if there are any practitioners anyone knows of. Could not find much useful info on the net. Does anybody know doctor/psychiatrist?

11:36 AM  
Anonymous John S said...

I read something interesting. Apparently of all people, Rush Limbaugh on his program apparently openly stated that we are "trending towards secession" and rambled on about it's possible inevitability. On this one point I happen to agree that over time it may become an actuality.

12:39 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


See previous thread. Someone already reported on this, but I agree, this is big. As I said, a broken clock is correct 2x/day. My own timeline for the breakup of America has been abt 20 yrs or so, but who knows? We seem to be drifting toward violence and civil war, and a # of states have had strong secessionist movements for yrs now.


Perhaps this will help:


12:53 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


As of now, it's not looking good for our Wafer Summit Mtg in NY on May 15. The virus is getting worse, and NY has shut down all indoor dining for the time being. Let's hope things improve by May, but there's no way of knowing whether or not it will be safe to travel. More later.


3:57 PM  
Anonymous Another Schmoe said...

There's a clear split between the minority of Americans who are ready for a long haul of disruptions to daily life, travel restrictions etc. and those who think this is just a temporary thing.

People keep telling me about how they can't wait to get back to going on vacations and having fun parties. I even had to turn down holiday party invitations! When I start replying about how I don't think things are going back to normal anytime soon the response is basically "ok yeah but don't tell me that, I don't want to think about it".

Oh the humanity/inhumanity of it all...signed, the turd in the punch bowl.

4:12 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

A writer I adored:


6:14 PM  
Anonymous Gary W. said...

Donald Trump’s Presidency Will End On The Day Of A Comet, A Meteor Shower And A Total Eclipse Of The Sun

Can't make this stuff up!

7:09 PM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

The Trumpsters claim that the mainstream media is merely the
mouth piece of the socialist Democratic Party and tells nothing
but lies. The real truth for real Americans can be found only
on-line and on AM radio. From these one gathers the claim to
establish the REAL America by simply seceding from the corrupt
one is based on the following: (1)The socialists have closed
small businesses and the churches to defeat a simple Chinese
cold virus; (2)We are told to wear masks while anarchist do
the same when rioting in our cities and that we must cut the
funding for our police; (3)The Constitution has been abandoned
to allow a socialist mob to rob us of our true President.
(4)There can be no doubt why they want to take our guns away
and steal our rights to own firearms. Such be the feelings of
almost half the voters. Is it any wonder that talk of civil war
is increasing?

7:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Wd be nice to have some links or evidence to back up your assertions. Anyone can have an opinion, after all. Please try to understand how this blog works. Thank you.


Don' quote me, but I heard that Trumpi has issued drones and nuclear warheads to the Proud Boys, who will, on that fateful day, nuke the shit out of DC, thus ending the debate as to who won the election. These are such exciting times!


7:46 PM  
Blogger meangenekaz said...

Hola a los Waferes,

@Just for fun I googled the topic "why I am not like donald trump".

It took me on a journey to the not too distant past. I know why I'm not like agent orange, a consummate psychopathic, a sick man. "We" may "be" Trump, but you can count me out of that group, s'il vous plait. Here is Richard Wolfe's opinion in a free Guardian piece archived on 3/13/2020: commentisfree/2020/mar/13coronavirus-donald-trump-presidency-sick-joke

Anecdotally, a long-time friend in Oregon called me this morning distressed about an alcoholic young man, her next-door neighbor, who killed himself with his own handgun last night not long after sundown. We got things back on track by talking about the Stellar's jays and the juncos that frequent her yard, in the woods. Looking at the bird videos on you tube. Hard times come again no more. . .

8:21 PM  
Anonymous all-around said...

O. Indian and A. Carter try reading about Bolshevist victims and the Holodomor. Holocaust BTW means death by fire, like the bombed victims of Dresden etc., let alone the 11k raped by the Red army. Look at Germany today a destroyed people and Europe has penalties and no free speech critiquing the official narratives of WWII.

9:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Links? Evidence? Anyone can broadcast an opinion; that's hardly an achievement. This is a blog for serious intellectual discussion, not a venue for airing personal prejudices free of any substantiation. BTW, I lived in Germany 30 yrs ago; it was quite vibrant. And European historians are certainly free to debate issues relating to WW2. In fact, one celebrated debate was called "Historikerstreit"; I own the bk by that title.


Yr a very confused young man. Did you seriously think, when I said Trump is us, that 'us' included Wafers??! Yr being defensive for nothing (aka Straw Man Argument). In addition, pace Mr. Wolfe, I think I have argued quite successfully (in AWTY, for example), that Trumpi is hardly some type of historical anomaly, some deviation from the mainstream. Not a chance. Wafers and Native Americans aside, his ideology of hustling, his view of life as making deals, goes to the heart of the American exp't (see WAF). We've been hustling for more than 400 yrs, and so of course, eventually the archetypal hustler gets elected president. Duh! Hardly an accident. (George Washington was, for example, one of the greatest hustlers in American, if not world, history.)


9:45 PM  
Blogger vsoguy said...

Dr. Berman and WAFers,

Here's an interesting video that shows the daily top trending Google searches in every US state throughout the 2010's:

This shows the mindset of the culture at large and how most of it is spectacle, or newly released digital devices to view the spectacle.

And I mentioned a few of my WAFeresque critiques to a coworker the other day. Bad idea. I advise heightened caution in uttering truth during these increasingly turbulent times.

10:19 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I guess the US today is a mixture of theater and dementia.


10:47 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Ordinary Indian - I supposed you could contact whoever is the central authority for Logotherapy and ask them if they have a therapist near you, or just buy a copy of the book and read it to the back where Frankl talked about curing a guy of stuttering by having him try stuttering *more* so I guess if you have dystonia you'd try to clench up *more*. It was apparently just done by talking so you could pay for a walnut-panel office with an approved psychotherapy couch and a Kandinsky on the wall and Oh yes, the therapist must have a luxurious beard .... or just try what's suggested in the book and maybe it will work.

all-around - Thank you great genius! Surely none of us have never-ever heard of the Holodomor & Holocaust. We were fighting against Russia in WWII right?

12:39 AM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

A touch of the class struggle?

Go to 00:03:06 to see that Apple is the making
decent money while 1,000 workers are waiting for
months of unpaid salaries.

12:55 AM  
Anonymous Taylor Greene said...'s_Comet

Gary that link brought Caesar's comet to mind. When in Rome!

9:29 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I feel bad for Trumpi. Really, the damage he cd have done, in a 2nd term. Now we'll never know.


10:14 AM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

MB, Thanks a lot for the info. Will try to contact them when I can.

11:23 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Also do a search for teachers of the Alexander Technique. I studied it for yrs, helped me a lot.


11:39 AM  
Anonymous Jo Jac said...

MB In Response To Indian...

Is there a book on its practices (the Alexander Tech) that you would recommend? I googled and found a few but cant quite tell if any are worth their salt, so to speak.

2:15 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


The problem w/texts is that you can't really understand the Technique unless you actually do it, and that means finding an instructor. (They vary in quality.) Alexander's most readable bk is "The Use of the Self." Coming at the same central idea, however, is a bk called "Hara," by Karlfried von Duerckheim.


2:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Not clear why Meghan shdn't be drenched in urine:

2:39 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

A poem for Meghan:

my love for you was once, and may still be
sweeter, purer, more elegant and free
we once strolled about Carnaby
near the nearby spheres of living pageantry
your hat was shorn of bedstraw
taking tea with a dose of oat milk and George Bernard Shaw

I've been waiting to tell you the news
but you came home with another pair of silver shoes
your number always turns up in my pocket
when I'm looking for a dime...

you once let me feel you deep inside
do you remember the way you cried?
it was a dream much too real
I love you, baby, but that's how it goes
I guess you know how I feel
it couldn't be real


4:32 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Very moving indeed. Tho perhaps we need another stanza glorifying her hats.


5:13 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

So Biden got the needed electoral votes to be officially the next President.

One still needs to bear in mind that about half the population voted for a tantrummy seven year old (psychologically) and they will continue to believe that the election was stolen from him.
Poll: 82 Percent of Trump Voters Say Biden’s Win Isn’t Legitimate

Civil War seems inevitable in the next decade or so.


6:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


One thing I didn't include in various collapse scenarios I've discussed is the flip-flop fenomenon (fff). The biased Supreme Court stole the election for Bush Jr. in 2000; half the country never believed he had won fair and square. And then half the country never accepted the Obama presidency, partly fueled by Trumpi's "birther" campaign. After that, half the country (progs) saw the Trump presidency as illegit, esp. since Hillary won the popular vote by 3 million. And now, convinced of Trumpalumpi's alternate reality, we've got half the country regarding Biden as illegitimate. This trend will continue if Trumpi gets reelected in 2024, wh/cd well happen. The pt is that 'democracy' probably cannot tolerate this endless strain of half-on, half-off, and that the US will finally reach a breaking pt b4 this decade is out. What that will look like is not clear, but civil war cannot be ruled out.


7:32 PM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

One has to wonder about the need his donors have for a strong
leader to save America. One wonders if the emptiness of the
GOP will continue with Trump as leader and chief slogan monger.
I guess he'll just stick around with other people's money just
to keep his name in the news for next try in 2024.

This would make for great TV. Imagine that Biden & Harris just
disappear before Jan 20 and Trump and family keep their jobs for
the next four years. This little video suggest "a person of
interest" for the cops.

11:09 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


So Schmiden has been certified by the Electoral College as the victor. What did the Limp Boys do? Abs. 0. They strut around, they huff and puff, but they do shit. My prediction: a similar scenario on Jan. 20, when Biden is inaugurated. The Boys will wave their guns (if allowed near the ceremony, wh/is unlikely); but none will be fired. Why? you may ask. Because they are douche bags, filled w/hot air.


ps: Word has it that Tulsi will be giving a major address at the inauguration, presenting the major tenets of Tulsism, and how they will serve to lead the country forward. Now *that* is what I call hard-hitting action.


3:34 AM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

Great Seer, minor correction re: the Limp Boys doing nothing.

The Impotent Boyz drove huge leased/mortgaged pickem up trucks around with prominent us empire flags screaming, usa, usa!

That definitely showed em. Certainly changed the levers of power.

Truck Yah!

8:08 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dr. Shit-

Well at least there's that. O dem Boys!


10:19 AM  
Anonymous Bohumil Balek said...

There's a book called "The Great Bay" published a decade ago, about how this civilization collapses after a corrupt presidential election in 2020 USA, and a virus rages out of control.

Life imitating art, no?

11:55 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

What I learned earlier today: if it wasn't for Ronald Reagan, the USA would be a great place.

I will spare you the link to the twitter thread. Life is too short to rub your noses in such piles of poop.

The desire for answers is far more powerful than the desire for truth, it seems.

12:41 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dan D-

Well, he was a colossal shmuck, and he did do us a lot of damage. But obviously, we were in the shit long b4 Ronnie showed up.


Thanks for the ref!


12:56 PM  
Anonymous This Island Earth said...

Dr. Berman,
With regard to the now established practice of half the country not accepting the results each election cycle, I can easily see the next phase. Not only will sitting presidents be under constant threat of impeachment, nationally prominent politicians with any sort of popularity and presidential ambitions will be under constant threat of investigation and the manufacture of criminal charges by their opponents. Of course, the arch-conservatives in Brazil are masters at using the cover of "the law" to preempt popular alternatives.

We have much to learn from countries like Brazil. Since most politicians with any juice whatsoever have a least one or two skeletons in the closet, I have every faith that we will take that next step -- not just ruining reputations or implying that the target is a Putin dupe, but putting the target in jail.

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Namaste said...

Hello Mr. Berman,

Talking of “meaning/purpose of life and wealth/fame”, want to ask if you don’t mind a very broad question. What according to you is the meaning/purpose of life ? Also do you consider chasing wealth/fame to be wrong even if done in the right way. I guess such questions will have many answers but would like to know from you since you are so well read/informed in such topics. Also if you point me to a book/talk of yours dealing with this it would be great.

1:56 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Hint: the problem lies in the word 'chasing'. Meanwhile, try this:


2:44 PM  
Blogger Janet D said...

The pandemic is revealing a lot of America's dark underbelly. Now "we're" doubling down on doing things that are guaranteed to contribute to the US becoming a 3rd world shithole (to paraphrase Trumpi). An important read:

"Pandemic Backlash Jeopardizes Public Health Powers, Leaders"

One article excerpt: "“What we’ve taken for granted for 100 years in public health is now very much in doubt,” said Lawrence Gostin, an expert in public health law at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

It is a further erosion of the nation’s already fragile public health infrastructure. At least 181 state and local public health leaders in 38 states have resigned, retired or been fired since April 1, according to an ongoing investigation by The Associated Press and KHN. According to experts, this is the largest exodus of public health leaders in American history. An untold number of lower-level staffers have also left."

2:56 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


You may remember the film of some yrs back, "Idiocracy." I think we've passed that stage long ago, and have now entered a Buffoonocracy. Honestly, where on the planet can you find such stupid people as Americans? If this is death by covid, it's also death by karma.

Speaking of buffoons: to those of you sad shmucks bombarding the blog w/hate mail: I don't suppose it will make a difference to you (what else do you have to do, really?), but I'm deleting yr messages w/o reading them. I realize nothing I can say will get thru 2u, but be aware that hatred is a poison that corrodes the vessel that contains it (i.e., you). It won't affect me even slightly. Tolstoy's Ivan Illyich woke up 3 days b4 he died, realized that he had wasted his life. Will such illumination come 2u? Not likely, I'm guessing. (Shit, you probably don't even know who Tolstoy was, yr so out of it.) God, you guys are in so much pain, and you simply can't see it; can't see the lives you *could* have had, instead of your present lives, filled with bile and dreck and misery. Well, what the heck: haters gonna hate, as the saying goes. It gives your lives meaning, of course, but what an empty, self-destructive meaning! How much poison and stupidity lurks in the American soul...


4:27 PM  
Blogger Cyrillia Juniper said...

Janet D, Dr. Berman and Wafers:

And this article demonstrates why the public no longer has faith in public health pronouncements:

A quote: "To put it bluntly, I want this pandemic over. And now. But I do not want an equal or even worse problem added onto the tragedy. And that is my greatest fear right now. And medical history has demonstrated conclusively over and over again: brash, poorly-thought-out, emotion-laden decisions regarding interventions in a time of crisis can exponentially increase the scale of pain and lead to even worse disasters."

This doctor provides some personal examples from his own practice of public vaccinations gone wrong. His indictment of the medical profession, drug companies and regulatory bodies should be seen by everyone. A bit long, but worth it.

4:40 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

Dan D,

The question is, who elected Reagan, and who consistently rates Reagan as the greatest president America ever had? The American people.

Besides, Reagan was just an empty suit who did what his supporters and handlers told him to do. He knew nothing at all, had no actual values, and was clearly going senile during his reign. He did end up doing a lot of damage, but only because his supporters and handlers demanded it. This doesn't excuse his actions, but it does point to the real source of the problem: the American people.

5:33 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

I have no source/reference here, but a question for Wafers and Dr. Berman.

While "Trumpism" is not the most destructive fascist political movement in history (at least for now), I do wonder if it is the dumbest one?

Trumpism just seems to be mentally retarded in a way that really is... unique.

6:09 PM  
Anonymous Northern Johnny said...

Hi Dr. B and WAFERS:

Still following this blog on a daily basis. Life just doesn't feel quite complete with a result dose.

Point of comparison on the public health front: yesterday in Toronto the first Canadian - a front line health worker - received a dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Tonight: Ontario hospitals are activating COVID-19 emergency plans: So, here in Toronto, where I am, we are only now coming up against our first truly critical COVID-19 crisis. How will we do?

-Northern Johnny

P.S. I am not in any sense a conservative, but parts of this article struck an authentic chord for me:

6:18 PM  
Anonymous Allegory said...

Nadine I agree Reagan had handlers and worked with Gorbachev. Some postulate that when the Berlin Wall fell it wasn't so much central banking vulture capitalism and holding companies moving East as much as a neo-Perestroika moving West hence the UN, Yugoslavia, etc.

Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, were allowed to be idols though not to invalidate the positive contributions of their works like Demons. I just mean that they weren't Solzhenitsyn in the same way Martin Luther K. wasn't Malcomb X or Fred Hampton.

6:46 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Ronnie was certainly the tool of corporate interests, but unlike, say, Obama, he did have a set of values that he genuinely believed in. (Obama was a postmodern president, in which a moral compass is unnecessary because the truth doesn't exist. All that you hafta do is ride the waves, so to speak, i.e. put in a good performance.) The 1st was Reagonomics, the trickle-down theory that says that if you nurture the very wealthy class, their wealth will spill over to the rest of the population. Of course, it never spills over; we have enuf stats to debunk that crap completely. JFK famously said, "A rising tide lifts all boats," but what it actually does is lift all yachts. It's a simplistic belief, and Reagan was nothing if not a simplistic thinker. (Philip Roth referred to him as a knucklehead.)

The 2nd belief was that the USSR was the 'evil empire', and had to be defeated at any cost (which JFK also believed, BTW--"bear any burden, pay any price, etc."). Hence the Iran-Contra scandal and so on. This also was simplistic; Reagan wd never consider the possibility that socialism had its positive aspects. And whether his military spending (esp. the SDI) broke the USSR remains debatable. After the fall, Gorbachev pted out that the Soviet system was collapsing from w/in for many yrs prior to Reagan, for example.

But of course, he remains beloved by the American people because they too are simplistic, and Reagan offered them simplistic formulas by which to 'think'. His 1st belief was just a variant of the American Dream, which nearly 100% of the American public buys into; the 2nd belief provided a Manichaean outlook that allowed them to organize their lives w/o any reflection. Critics called him the Teflon president; his version of America was the Disney version. But Americans are the Teflon people, and most of them live in Disneyland. In that sense, during the Reagan yrs we had a true democracy, in that the congruence between the people and the president was almost a perfect fit. The people had no interest in the fact that he had Alzheimer's during his last few yrs in office, and that he was making major decisions based on the advice of Nancy's astrologer.


7:09 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


As I've now cleaned my house and am ready to return to Mexico City for the holidays, I have a bit of time to address yr question at greater length. 1st a note to the Berman-haters: If you want to bump me off, I live near the Trotsky Museum in Mexico City, so if you hang out there, sooner or later I'll come by. Then you can make like Ramon Mercader, and plunge an icepick into my head, if yr so inclined. (I'm assuming you know abt the rivalry between Trotsky and Stalin.)

I can't really say what the purpose of life is in the abstract; it is probably different for each of us. For Americans in general, however, it's to own a Mercedes Benz, as Janis pointed out. Which strikes me as kinda sad, but then they don't think so. Anyway, you will need to decide for yrself what yr life's purpose is.

The link I sent you, to SSIG: this bk says that my purpose in life is authenticity, and suggests to the reader that s/he will be a lot happier if s/he forgets abt the Mercedes and opts for an authentic life instead. A further insight into this may be found in Virginia Nicholson's bk, "Among the Bohemians" (she is Virginia Woolf's grand-niece), which chronicles the search for the same, for a life that was honest and free and in touch with reality. My own view, and the Bohemians' view, was similar to the Parable of the Cave in Plato: most people are entranced by the shadows on the wall; few are interested in the light.

From a personal pt of view, I can tell you what shadows I chased, and eventually gave up:

1. Money. Well, I never really cared abt being wealthy. As of now, I don't have much, and just get by every month. But it's also the case that I don't need much, so this goal, wh/exercises most Americans, is a nonstarter for me. My goal here is just to keep my nose above the water.
2. Fame. I never seriously imagined winding up on the front cover of Time Magazine, and the stuff I was writing was not likely to render my name a household word. Over time, I did realize 3 things. One, even if I did win, let's say, a Pulitzer (not bloody likely), I wd feel elated for 2 wks and then it wd just fade into the background. Two, fame is evanescent. The most famous American writer during 1920-50 was Walter Lippman; who reads him, or even knows of him, today? Finally, what I really enjoy abt writing is the writing/research itself, not the subsequent applause of the crowd (if there is any). This falls into the category of "virtue is its own reward." Anyway, I hardly believe that fame or visibility wd dramatically improve my life, and when I look at public figures like David Brooks, all I can do is groan. Fame is no guarantee of anything.
3. Relationships. I agree w/Woody Allen here: it's the luck of the draw. I had some great relationships during my lifetime, and am very grateful for them. For whatever reason, however, it was not my fate to pair off long-term. I'm not convinced, however, that I wd be a happier person if I now had a marriage of 35 yrs. There's really no way of knowing. So, I just remain open to whatever might come along, w/o thinking too much abt it.
4. Power and influence. Perhaps this is a variant of fame, I dunno. I do know that I have no interest in wielding or possessing power. As for influence, much is enuf? Maybe 2 or 3x a month, I get an email from someone thanking me for my work. I just want people to read my stuff and get something out of it, something important to them. This may amount to a few 1000 people, but I have no way of knowing.

So leaving all that aside, what is my purpose today? One is to pursue the truth as best I can, and share it w/other people. The 2nd is love. In my friendships, of course; but on a larger scale, to give what I can of myself to the world, thru my writing or lecturing or teaching or whatever. (This is agape rather than eros.) In my own mind, both these things are aspects of the attempt to live an authentic life.

Hope that helps.


7:09 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Many Wafers have reported that if they don't get their daily blog fix, they start to shake, or develop rashes. I understand this.


Essay #15 of AWTY explains why Trumpi got elected, in 2016. Politically, he was very astute: he recognized a strain of hurt and repression among a very large sector of the American people, and he played to it. Hillary, on the other hand, was a dummy; she just labeled these folks "a basket of deplorables." This is not how you win elections. But as for Trumpi's personality: not so much retarded as the behavior of a 7-yr-old child. "Retarded" is perhaps, in this case, another word for arrested emotional development; so the guy comes off as a horse's ass. (Note that in the very late Roman empire, there was one emperor who was a 7 or 8-yr-old child.)


7:31 PM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Speaking of chasing shadow #1 (didn't WAFers predict BLM commodification months ago?):

I guess one has to make $ to survive, but a quote at the end sends shivers down my spine:

"It’s almost like she’s a logo at this point"

7:46 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


She looks a little like Jerry Rubin, and seems to have followed the same path, if a few decades later. Actually, these pix seem tragic to me: from serious critic of America to entrepreneur-buffoon(ette)/douche baguette. Marcuse was rt: capitalism can absorb anything. This is too pathetic for words. RIP, BLM.

But then maybe it's time for some Berman T-shirts, what the heck.


8:00 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

It is time that an update of the classic "Authoritarian Personality"
be written to make an attempt to find what is it about life in the
US and what is has done to these tens of millions of Trump
worshipers to lead them into UNreality. The baleful results of
fundamentalist religion, declining family income, and clinging to
the dream of total instant material happiness can easily be seen
as harmful to any concept of mental health.

8:00 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

Below is a recent CNN tweet about Trumpi:
“It says a lot about the President and less about the country,” George Conway says on President Trump’s refusal to accept the election results. “It says three things about the President,” Conway says: that he’s delusional, running a scam on the American people and is malevolent.

Conway of course is only partly correct. He of course (and CNN) will never say that: "A large portion of of the US population is delusional, running a scam, and malevolent."


8:49 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


See article on Angela Davis above. Also this:

There is no reason, shd you run into either of these pseudo-chic turkettes, to hold back on yr urine.


10:12 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Some good interviews with John La Carre' have been on public radio lately since he's just died. They should be find-able since NPR archives all their stuff. Great listening. At one point La Carre' points out that the idea was to be "Anti-Communist" which meant one was standing up for "Western Values" but he eventually realized that there really wasn't anything there in "Western Values" in other words, what was he fighting for? He was an actual spy, and an intelligent, insightful, and to modern ears, politically quite to the Left. All of this is paraphrased, and badly, by moi.

Ordinary Indian - If you're still on this subject, get the latest edition of Frankl's Man's Search For Meaning, blue cover, Beacon Press. It'll run you $12 or so online and that's a cheap therapy session. Yes he was "clinical" in his description of camp life, but that's the best way to get the horror across. It's the 2nd part of the book, on logotharapy, that's the useful part.

10:52 PM  
Anonymous B. Louis said...

One of the most disturbing films I've ever watched is 'Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom'. It was directed by Pier Pasolini. It's certainly not something I'll ever watch again as it's relentlessly unpleasant (which is the point of it).,_or_the_120_Days_of_Sodom

Pier Pasolini one remarked that when a culture goes sideways like it did in Fascist Italy, the individual's sense of equilibrium is destroyed. Up becomes down. Red becomes blue. Cruelty becomes compassion.

I used to think the film was just cheap shock horror, but after witnessing recent events in America unfold, I've realized how horrifically spot-on it is.

In America, people refuse to wear masks as an act of defiance against tyranny. Meanwhile the sitting president is calling for the imprisonment of his former political allies.

11:23 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I searched news outlets online, but cdn't find anything abt Trump calling for imprisonment of his political allies.


2:04 AM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

Go to 00:00:40 to get a sense of the panic over the thought that
the evil forces of the Democratic Party are about to begin the
end the America as we once knew.
To think that just 40 years ago Portland was sleepy, staid,
and respectable. Now just look how upset some downtrodden can
be when those with money can push them around. How come they
do not realize that if they voted for Trump, they could have as
lovely a home as he has (thanks to his father's money)?

2:40 AM  
Blogger Xair said...


This would be outrageous except for the fact that it's so commonplace in this country. How Wonderfully American of them.

3:35 AM  
Anonymous Coco said...



11:33 AM  
Anonymous Lynda said...

A horror. Even if there had been (there wasn't) a reason for police to be there she's still entitled to dignity. And the attempt by the city to stop the video from airing.

11:39 AM  
Anonymous Namaste said...

Thanks a ton Mr. Berman for taking the time and writing such a wonderful detailed response. I will definitely be reading your book and others you mentioned. As you said leading an authentic life should be the target, I will try to work towards it. You see it’s difficult when you grow up with the pressure from your close ones and society to be competitive and achieve traditional success. Work seems so boring to me but you have to pay the bills , so keep toiling.

Regarding the haters, I know you don’t care much of them but don’t even waste one line on these morons. These people are not worth even a few words from you. I don’t understand how one can be anti Semitic. Like even if Jews want to look out for each other or become powerful, what is wrong . When your whole race was threatened to be wiped off, that’s what any group would try to do to avoid such fate again.

12:16 PM  
Anonymous down-we-go said...

Chuck and Brian and all others who wonder how the hell Trumpi got elected. See Joe Bageant's hilarious Deer Hunting with Jesus. Bageant describes the typical Trump voter 9 years before 2016.

1:35 PM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

“Meet the new boss same as the old boss**

**”Won’t Get Fooled Again,” (Pete Townshend), The Who, released June 1971

1:55 PM  
Anonymous Merci said...

You're safe with me MB though I'd appreciate more jabs at the likes of D. Brooks, T. Friedman, Steven Pinker etc. God I hate these people.

2:02 PM  
Anonymous Nadine Bupkis said...

Dr. Berman,

I recently read a Pew Research study that claims that 86% of Egyptians think that leaving Islam should be punished with death. Pew Research studies are trotting out some pretty horrific statistics when it comes to Islam.

How much credence should I give this? Is it anti-Muslim propaganda? Is it exaggerated, but somewhat accurate? Or is it completely accurate? I dunno what to think of claims like this, but I tend to be skeptical because of America's pernicious imperial agenda. (The Pew Research Foundation is located in Washington, D.C., and gives their findings to the federal government. It's supposedly respectable, but I believe nothing the American government says when it comes to Muslims, immigrants or terrorism.)

7:35 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

Bill Quigley, who teaches law at Loyola University of New Orleans, has collected facts (with embedded links connecting to his data sources) that express the hardships caused by COVID19 but also suggest a grossly inadequate American response to these hardships. As has been expressed often on this blog, COVID19 may simply be speeding up the collapse of America - couldn't happen too soon.

7:44 PM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Nadine- I agree with you. Reagan wouldn't mean much of anything if it wasn't for the millions who supported him. I used to say that about Pat Buchanan all the time- he in himself doesn't bother me. the world will always have hate-filled anger-driven people. What DOES bother me is that there are millions who support what he says. Same with Reagan, same with Trump. I am not a huge believer in the 'important individual' idea of history. As they say in other matters, if Reagan or Trump didn't exist, the millions would have invented them. Specific manifestations may be driven by individuals but large trends are like rivers with multiple tributaries. One person may be tossed in and bob along as a current indicator but the bob is not directing the river.

Ran across an article that discusses a new 4-part documentary on Reagan. The line between Reagan and Trump is strong, but maybe Reagan was the tragedy and Trump is the farce?

8:04 PM  
Anonymous Jolene said...

"with the further retreat of a political left in America, and widening inequality since the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s only a matter of time before the next Gipper takes the stage. God help us all."

Ronald Reagan Paved the Way for Donald Trump
A new Showtime docuseries reminds us of just how awful Ronald Reagan was and how his brand of demagogic racism became a model for Trump.
Has anyone seen this yet? Looks fascinating, in a sick way.

10:30 PM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Tulsi news!

"We want them infected" -

11:01 PM  
Anonymous B. Louis said...

From the American freakshow files.

The most vicious and insane right-wing talk show host in America is a guy named 'Michael Savage'. Born 'Michael Weiner'. He hosts a daily AM show called "The Savage Nation" which traffics in every variant of Conservative conspiracy theory. Heavy doses of homophobia every week.

Before he became 'Michael Savage', he penned several fairly terrible novels under his birth name, one of which is semi-autobiographical. It's about a man struggling with deep homosexual lust:

He was also friends with Allen Ginsberg in the 70s and penned a letter to Ginsberg outlining an erotic encounter with another man in Fiji:

11:15 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Call this The Science of Selling, how to guide the happy robots
while they shop. Think of old-fashioned evil, godless Chinese
brainwashing when VAS at 00:01:40 is presented.

Sample this 90-min. item to see American anomie. Think surplus
population from AI and automation, think consumerism for those
who cannot afford it, think of maintaining the distribution of
wealth and income, and think why the frightened voted for Trump.

2:39 AM  
Blogger Janet D said...

@Cyrillia....I agree that "science" in general - and it's offspring - have issues with corruption. However, I take issue the "this is why people have no faith in public health....", the reason being is that type of blanket rejection is too simplistic. Life is complex, science is complex, pandemics are complex, one must do one's best to see the complexities & parse what is trustworthy or not. Large swaths of the ignorant (which has nothing to do with formal education) public suddenly deciding that a country of 350 million people doesn't need a robust public health system is....shortsighted is the kindest word I can use.

Rejecting public health guidance wholesale leads to situations such as a state finding that rationing of medical care is necessary, & agreeing to rules which could let community members die who might otherwise survive. Say, like, Idaho:
"Idaho Health Care Leaders OK Crisis Health Care Rationing Rule"

Side note: the 'funny' thing is is that back in February, when Italy was having to ration care, I saw a # of articles/comments contributing those horrors to 'socialized medicine'. Yet here we are, 10 months later into the same pandemic, with much more medical knowledge, better treatments/protocols, etc., and yet the 'land of the free' can't organize it's own populace to avoid leaving some citizens to die. Because, you know, the tyranny of the mask mandate.

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Kaplan said...

Deb Haaland's nomination for Interior Secretary is, for obvious reasons, a big deal in Indian Country. We'll see how this goes:

5:38 PM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

One thinks of rats, maggots, and seagulls fighting over garbage.
Can one see in this that killing for the Constitution will be
called true patriotism?

1:35 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

So this is a real surprise! Turns out tax cuts, basic trickle down theory, doesn't actually work.

10:38 AM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Yes, as mentioned a few days ago, it is time for a fresh edition
of "The Authoritarian Personality". Go to 00:01:40 for a start.

12:42 AM  
Blogger Systems Crash Go said...

Dr Berman,

I think the authenticity goal in life is the best possible way to live, but the issue is that even decent people have to get a job which means that we all are coerced to participate in an evil system that destroys your life and leaves precious little time for anything else. It's funny that there are so many decent people working to keep the monster alive. It is the whip and the carrot that drives us. This also might be an explanation for why people in America and around the world have lost their sense of balance. Over time people lose all sense of fairness and decency and are cultivated to be ruthless reward seekers. This is my own lived experience. If one foregoes a high paying job in Corporate Inc, not a day will go by without the world punishing him for such forbearance.

2:35 AM  
Blogger Baron Von Strangeknight said...

I have to say I miss user Bill Hicks. His analysis and observations were spot on.

I also have recently watched the films Nocturnal Animals and Manchester By the Sea. Both got me to thinking about the US. and how messed up things are in human relationships (trauma, choices, consequences, fulfilling societal roles vs. being authentic).

8:34 AM  
Blogger Cyrillia Juniper said...

Dr. B: I hope you are OK. You usually announce your absence from the blog so I'm a bit worried at this sudden silence. Please take good care of yourself. Sending you best wishes.

11:28 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Greetings and a happy weekend to all. It’s time for Karen Sunday and to see some new American ladies making complete fools of themselves.
All attempts are made to keep every episode original. However, our third and fourth Karens in this 20 minute segment unfortunately have been shown in a previous episode. But the ballistic Karen #3 is a classic Karen who definitely merits being watched again for our entertainment.
Let’s enjoy Karen Sunday, Episode 21.

9:28 AM  
Anonymous Namaste said...

O GSWH, where art thou ? Hope everything is ok.

11:52 AM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

Wafers, there is no particular reason to share stories from India here, but my gut feeling is that this protest movement will go down in history as one of the most significant ones in the 21st century against corporate greed, aggressive Neo-liberal economic policies, and in defense of constitutional decency. Eventually, it will resonate with other movements all over the world. It already has created ripples in the US, Canada, Britain etc. Some snippets:
1. The protest has been totally peaceful; 2. The leaders (there is no one leader) and the folks with them have been amazingly precise in articulating their positions against corporatization of agriculture and other aspects of the contentious laws; 3. there has been usual propaganda against the protesting farmers trying to vilify them; 4. the protestors have boycotted media outlets that have sided with the ruling party over the past several years; 5. they have set up a library on the protest site, have started their own social media channel (which FB tried to block yesterday, but were forced to restore) and have started publishing a bi-lingual magazine to disseminate their views; 6. they are cooking meals not just for themselves, but are feeding anybody who happens to be there. The local poor are having free meals everyday; 7. tens of thousands of framers are marching towards Delhi to join the ones already camped there.

Some links:

12:31 PM  
Anonymous Krakhed said...

GSWH & Wafers,

I'm happy to stay tuned to the greatest blog on earth. Where American collapse is chronicle truthfully and hilariously. Looking forward to reading my copy of "The Heart of the Matter".

Many thanks to the GSWH for his work and the recommended readings so often found in his writings. I really enjoyed reading "The Denial of Death" by Ernest Becker. I was going to follow up on this with Otto Rank, but but just thought I'd ask the Wafers in this blogosphere-- Has anyone come across a more modern interpretation in the same vein as Otto Rank?

1:13 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


In my absence, abt 25 messages piled up, and I shall get to them in a moment. I need to explain to you why the blog went blank, and how to deal w/this in the future. It's not a pretty picture; I'm hoping we are not fucked.

1. I divide my time between 'home' (small town) and Mexico City, normally spending abt 12 days in the 1st and 20 in the 2nd. So I got to MC on Dec. 16, and as I never take my computer with me, I went to my usual Internet cafe. I've been doing this for yrs, w/o any problems. Suddenly, the computer in the cafe wdn't let me into the blog. They wanted me to verify my identity w/info that I didn't (don't) have. WTF?
2. I tried everything I cd, including standing on my head. No dice.
3. My analysis: covid is spreading like wildfire now, wh/means increased Internet usage; which means increased fraud. In response, Google suddenly tightened its security measures, and I got caught in the mess. In my case, it means that I can only access the blog from my home computer. What, then, to do when I'm in Mex City? Will that mean that we can run the blog only 12 days/mo.? Yikes.
4. Then Mex City suddenly declared a Code Red, i.e. near-total lockdown. Everything closed, including Internet cafes. This on Saturday, 2 days ago. I realized I needed to return home, since the lockdown is projected to last till Jan. 15.
5. I do have a computer person here at home, who has helped me in the past. The problem is that he is shtupping an older woman in Juarez, on the other side of the country, and currently can think only with his dick. He doesn't respond to my messages for help. Why he wd rather fornicate like a dog rather than help me w/my blog, I can't imagine. But I do hope to contact him soon, when he comes up for air.
6. If he can't fix the situation, I shall have to schlep this laptop with me every time I go to MC, since Google recognizes this machine and none other. This will be a drag, plus I'll hafta pay Telmex a bundle to set up computer services for me in MC, but what can I do. The blog must go on.

Anyway, that's the story, a tale of horror and woe. I shall be home, and at this computer, until Jan. 15, when Code Red reverts to orange. Then--we'll see. But rest assured: altho I told the death-threaters exactly where to find me in Mexico City, and how to rub me out (ice pick), so far I'm still alive. Nor do I have any rare diseases. But I ask for yr patience in the future, shd we hafta go thru another 'blackout' like the one of the last few days. Thank you all. Remember: I am Great; there are none like unto me.


There are shitloads of articles on Rank, as well as biographies, but I suspect Becker is the best of the lot. I've read it more than once.


Fabulous news. Gandhi revisited.


She was also pro-torture and pro-war on terror. True colors now coming out. If there is any one person in the US that needs an extensive combo slapping/urine treatment, it's Tulsi. Honestly, we all need to fly to Hawaii and do a bit of projectile vomiting.


Check out Essay #15 in AWTY.

"That's all folks!"


6:14 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...
If anyone can remember the expurgated American history courses
in high school in the 1950s, this video will be a refresher.

Some titles for Krakhed: N. O. Brown "Life Against Death,"
Marcuse "Eros and Civilization," Freud's "Civilization and
Its Discontents," and two titles by a courageous resistor
in the 1950 Lindner "Prescription for Rebellion" and "Must
You Rebel?". When I read these two, I noticed quite a contrast
the American history course in high school.

6:28 PM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

Sorry about the IT troubles MB. I'm not good enough at computer stuff to know exactly what to do. I do know that many, many sites (email, banks, etc.) remember your computer (IP address) and if you login from something different, they will send a code or email to you to verify your identity. My pharmacy texts me a code every damn time I login to my account to renew meds!

Do you still use the same email you did when you signed up for blogger? You might have to go into the admin side and update your information. Or you may need a Google account. Maybe try this:

There are probably WAFers out there that are better at IT than me. The above is the best I can come up with without seeing the actual verification message.

9:17 PM  
Anonymous Niget, William said...

MB - I was very concerned! Had been following along with Mex City's spiking #s and lockdowns. Glad you are healthy&safe! Lighting a candle for you, sir!

Indian + MB + Marshall:

Interesting inside info on the agricultural protests in India:

Sadanand Dhume BREAKS DOWN Farmer Protests In India: 'Modi's Most Serious Political Challenge"

9:07 AM  
Blogger alex carter said...

mb - soooo glad you didn't get icepicked. fivehundredpoundpeep and I were really worried.

It all chalks up to what I call "bit rot". It used to be easy to make signs 'n' banners on any computer, now you're better off working on your poster paint and brush skills. A blogger I used to read for entertainment value, "Bison Survival Blog", has gone to publishing paper booklets. Since it takes 1-1/2 hours to upload one minute of video to YouTube from here in Silicon Valley, it, and anything more modern online than email and a lame blog, are beyond me and I expect them to only get further away as time goes on. Maybe in another decade my "blog" will consist of woodcut-printed broadsides I trade for cans of soup.

12:07 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


There are 172 registered Wafers. Working together, we may be able to save America. Here are the steps we must take:

1. Broker a deal whereby Trumpi resigns and Reince Priebus becomes acting president.
2. Stand in front of Tulsi's house for 3 days w/a banner that reads


Then, hold her head under water for 10 mins.

3. Attend the Jan. 20 inauguration w/another banner:


What say you, Waferinos?


2:20 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

MB, I've encountered the Google/YT 'lockout' myself, they put you in an impossible verification loop. They might as well cancel your ID at that point, but I guess they try to maintain that "don't be evil" thing.

Might I suggest you start a backup blog on a different platform, in case such happens here? One that is NOT on google or another big corp site? Keep it in reserve, just in case.

4:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


How wd I do that? It's a gd suggestion, but I dunno how to proceed w/it.


4:26 PM  
Blogger Nesim Watani said...

Hey Wafers: In the hollowness of Identity Politics and the Progs are full of shit I give you a critique of "The Squad" and how they are just more of the same.

MB: Do not mourn the fall of Trumpolini for Biden will be a disaster in his own right. Austerity is coming for America and it will be delivered by Biden.

Finally, in why this nation deserves much worse I give you CIA Backed Death Squads in Afghanistan killing children in religious schools.

4:44 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Breaking 24-hour rule for info: GF & I used to use Wordpress (using their servers and paying). We left it because they lacked features like embedding YT clips). Now we're on squarespace, it's not perfect, but better than WP. $100 a year.

As a paying customer you'll have clout. No way would you have issues with signing in - if you did, their tech support could fix it. You might find their text input system different (hopefully not too different), but if all you're doing is a single text post with no fancy images or videos, I think either SQ or WP would be better than relying on the dubious mercy of Google.

You could also run your own WP blog, but I don't think you'd enjoy the process of managing the installation, and if your tech guy is making the beast with two backs when there are problems, that could stop the show). Def. would look at Squarespace.

5:16 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Gd articles, thanks. The evidence for America disintegrating continues to pile up. It's been yrs now since I wrote that the country was dying by its own hand. Et voila!


5:19 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

I have a present for Wafers.

I suggest one listens to this everyday, once before bed and once when waking up; actually, keep the damn thing playing on a loop through the night.

It will help prepare us for the tasks ahead when the 99% overthrow the narcissistic 1%.

...after the fall of Truthdig, I was suffering from Mr. Hedges withdrawal syndrome. Glad I found a fix.

6:47 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


The scenario of 99% overthrow is Hedges' dream fantasy. Not gonna happen, amigo.


Many thanks. I'll check it out.


8:25 PM  
Blogger NeilW said...

WHO IS THIS 'BELMAN'? ''A more recent American social critic, Morris Berman, has also been cognisant of the cultural decline and disintegration of America; indeed it would have been difficult to miss. His caustic analysis on the current state of American Culture – The Twilight of American Culture (4) – makes particularly compelling reading for the English-speaking world. Mr. Berman argues provocatively and incisively that the direction of American civilization is locked into a path which will lead nowhere except into its own demise. The American empire has now borne witness to the passage of its most fruitful and triumphant years and its approaching the future – if it hasn’t already got there – and a period of social and political chaos from which there doesn’t appear to be an exit, or at least a controlled exit. So the controlled exit is about the best route on offer, though only 50/50 at best.

‘’For when a population becomes distracted by trivia, and when cultural life is redefined as a perpetual round of entertainments, when serious public conversation becomes a form of ‘baby-talk’, when in short, a people become an audience and their public business becomes a vaudeville act, then a nation finds itself at risk; culture death is a near (extremely near) possibility.’’(5)

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Sophia Cussotto said...

Corporate lobbyists and slave labor

iPhones and Nike and slave labor, oh my!

9:04 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I don't post Unknowns; you need a real handle to participate in this discussion. E.g., Julius V. Fartwell, M.D.


Steve Jobs was just as bad, actually.


Thanks for the ref. I'm always amazed when anyone quotes me. In any case, you might enjoy my autobiography, soon to appear: I, BELMAN.


9:29 PM  
Anonymous Another Schmoe said...

MB, surely you are tracking the increasing pace of manic behavior by our man Donald. Threatening a veto if McConnell doesn't increase the payment to poor Americans from a measly $500 up to $2K is quality entertainment, to say the least. The fun just does NOT stop.

Apparently the Turdblossom in the GOP coalmine Karl Rove is upset at General Flynn's bright idea of martial law to overthrow the election, which is my signal to laugh hysterically.

4:16 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Not clear why Trumpi wants to do that, but the $600 promised so far is actually trivial: it will hardly cover rent, groceries, utility bills, etc., for the average American. Congress shd just take the $ and buy more guns, invade more countries, and foment more wars. As for the advisory group currently hanging out in the Oval Office: I've said this b4: once you realize that the whole country, including our 'statesmen', is deranged, what the US is about and where it is headed become crystal clear. (This is not really hyperbole, when you think abt it.)


8:02 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

I'm not easily impressed, but this is brilliant:

All sides pretended that Trump was a radical deviation from the norm, and so did Trump, when all he actually did throughout his entire time in office was protect the status quo just like his predecessors did. As writer and activist Sam Husseini recently put it, “Trump is the opposable thumb of the establishment. He looks like he’s on the opposite side, but he just helps it grab more.”

11:06 AM  
Anonymous Abbott said...

Graphic imaging wealth to scale of the 400 richest Americans

11:45 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I said something like that shortly after he got elected; that Trumpi was no anomaly. As it turns out, Americans are not very bright, so they think that once we cut out the 'cancer', all will be fine. There have been a few articles pointing out this mistake, but getting a dumb populace to see this is not very likely.

"Trumpelina, Trumpelina tiny little thing
Trumpelina dance, Trumpelina sing
Trumpelina what's the difference if you're very small?
When your heart is full of love you're nine feet tall!"


12:05 PM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

You occasionally remark that some writers are catching up to views you expressed upwards of 20 years ago. Here is a new book by Jared Yates Sexton entitled "American Rule: How a Nation Conquered the World But Failed Its People" that exposes false myths believed by Americans about America using historical fact going all the way from the present back to America's beginnings.

12:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Clearly, there shd be a Nobel Prize in the category of Knowing What's What. I wd be honored to humbly accept the 1st prize given in this category. Title of my Nobel acceptance speech: "America is so full of shit it makes me dizzy just to think about it."


1:34 PM  
Anonymous Toby said...

"Art Laffer says Trump should veto the coronavirus bill. Here's why"

Reagan's former economist ways in

I hated him then and I still do.

By the way, has anyone seen the new Reagan docu-series?

2:08 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I had heard that the original name for the Reagan docu-series was "Bum". Why they changed it, I can't imagine.


4:30 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Reflections of Trumpi:

Trumpi, O Trumpi, allow me to convey a Christmas blessing
You walked thru treacherous dangers, and even Debra Messing
Who on Monday said you deserved to be raped in prison
Never leave the arena, never ever lie low
Return in 2024 to crush Sleepy Joe
Who, by then, should be placed in Guantanamo
You were more solid than any erection could be
America incarnate
It's dizzy apogee!
For now, O Trumpi, farewell and adieu
Take a little time
Visit Moscow, Kathmandu,
Or possibly learn the kazoo


4:33 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Very inspiring, to be sure. I can't help thinking that the answer to all our problems is if each and every American were to embrace their Inner Tulsi. We all carry Tulsi within us, as a kind of Jungian shadow. Since she is repulsive, we deny her. But this won't work: the repressed always returns. That's why the US is in such bad shape. But were we to embrace our Inner Tulsi, the sun wd shine again. :-)


7:06 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Recall that when things did not look good for the higher NAZIs
at the end of the war, they planned to live in an underground
city to wait for conditions to return so they would resume their
positions of power. I wonder if Trump and family are thinking the
same. Both states have gun crazy survivalists for security.

7:13 PM  
Blogger Nesim Watani said...

@AlexCarter: The Tulsi news is an issue she is actually right on. Did you notice the author of the article makes the argument that there isn't a physical difference between "cis" men and "cis" women? The gist of the transgender movement is it is an anti-women's movement that is seeking to gain rights by taking women's rights. This is done by removing the term "sex" in legal terms and redefining humans by gender which means no one is biologically anything because gender in this context means behavioral expression. This is why Trans women make the argument that a Penis can be feminine and it's "Trans misogyny" and Trans bigotry for a lesbian to reject "trans lesbians".

Here is why they want to ban trans women from women's sports.

And here are countries allowing trans-identified males to go to women's prisons.

8:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I have some vague memory of an overthrown dictator--Samosa?--moving to a satellite that circled the globe. Wd be a neat solution for Trumpi. He will do a lot of damage between now and Jan. 20, and I'm assuming he won't attend Biden's inauguration. But what then? Where will he go, and what will he do? I think it might be neat if he held a counter-inauguration on Jan. 20, across from the Capitol Bldg., w/armed bubbas and Karens in attendance, including the Limp Boys. Plus have planes flying above, skywriting "Stop the Steal!" Then do everything in his power to fuck up the Biden administration. When the law catches up w/him, he can retreat to his satellite in the sky, heavily armed. NASA will then put Biden in a satellite to chase him, try to gun him down. At the same time, I'll be on nationwide TV, banging together the heads of Obama and Hillary for 20 uninterrupted minutes. This is the America I love.


8:38 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

BTW, I'm impressed at how much identity politics have accomplished. The cops never got defunded, and continue to gun down unarmed black men. BLM has gone chic--just ask Angela Davis. The pussy hat march is a distant memory of meaninglessness, and the antifa groups in Portland failed to do much of anything, beyond getting themselves arrested. Meanwhile, progs are all gaga about Schmiden's 'diversity' appointments, which include military and capitalist regulars, many drawn from the Obama admin. Wafers might wanna read the stories "The Wire Cage Experiment" and "The Politically Incorrect Comedy Hour" in my latest bk, "The Heart of the Matter." Meanwhile, the silence of Tulsi, Ging (Newtrich), and Dan Quayle is deafening. Not to mention Joey Buttafuoco.


8:54 PM  
Anonymous Dr. Shithouse said...

Dr. Berman and Wafer, Merry Chanukah, Merry Christmas, etc...

I share the sediments with many folks herein. I am deeply disappointed with the impotent Boyz. What the fuck did they DO? Nothing, really.

They simply pranced around in 'camu,' did some jingoistic usa, usa blather, rode in oversized pickem trucks, and had us-ian flags displayed while megaphoned stop the steal.... WTF? Talk about limp dicks, more like flatulence. They might as well been talkin' to themselves or yelling in the wilderness. No one had a shit to give.

Like drinking non-alcoholic whiskey. Big, empty, null set, nothing-- oh Great Seer.

9:00 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dr. Shit-

I take it you really did mean 'sediments'. Neat pun. But clearly, I am indeed Great. Who cd possibly argue w/that?


9:33 PM  
Blogger Ajay Singh said...

Dear Dr. Berman: "Defiance," by Philip Deloria, in Nov. 2 New Yorker, was a terrific read—an iconoclastic all-encompassing essay masquerading as a book review. Thanks for the recommendation.

On a related note, some 30 years ago, the subject of injustices done to America's indigenous people whom Columbus mis-identified as "Indians' came up during a post-supper argument I was party to in a high-class vacation resort in Thailand. There were two major protagonists: A millionaire Irish American Wall Street broker, based in New York City, and his Jewish American brother-in-law (also in "finance") based in Hong Kong. The argument got quite ugly as the (Jewish) brother-in-law and I challenged the Wall Street broker to acknowledge the sheer immorality underlying the stealing of native American lands.

I cannot possibly ever forget his vomit-inducing response, repeated verbatim in all its chilling accuracy: "Where were the land deeds?"

2:30 AM  
Anonymous down we go said...

Latest article from Chris Hedges and my comment in response.

"I can’t see the American people rising up to overthrow the corporate overlords, because most of us want what they have – we just don’t have enough money ......... yet. But one day …. when our ship comes in; when we win the lottery – we will have arrived, the Dream will become our reality. All we have to is work hard, keep our noses to the grindstone, be good citizens and America will bless us as it has the overlords whom we secretly admire. John Steinbeck is recorded as having once remarked: “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires. (John Steinbeck)"

"We are complicit in our own imprisonment. Piped pipers are not needed to lure us away. We willingly march to our deaths. We don’t want to destroy the overlords; we want to be them. And until that changes, nothing else will."

7:54 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

For all the admirers of Obama here, a review of his memoir. Essay entitled 'The Fraudulent Universalism of Barack Obama,' to give you hint of its tone.

"One cannot help but feel Taibbi had it right when he noted in ‘08 that “you can’t run against [Obama] on the issues because you can’t even find him on the ideological spectrum.” ...When one revisits Obama’s words and speeches today, it is striking just how unmemorable and lacking in content they really were, beyond vague platitudes so inoffensive it was impossible to disagree with them."

"Obama, for example, complains in the book about protesters who called George W. Bush a war criminal on Bush’s last day in office. To Obama, this is simply rude, and rudeness is a vice so unconscionable that it must be avoided at all costs, even the cost of letting a war criminal get away with his war crimes without being yelled at."

Fun times we have been living in....

8:32 AM  
Anonymous LL Rigley said...

*While many are engaging with mutual aid for the first time this year, there is a rich history and legacy of communities — especially those failed by our systems of power — coming together to help each other survive, and thrive. Here are nine examples*

Dual Process Article

8:49 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Dan D-

Obama is an incredible douche bag, but the book will sell in the millions, because progs are incredible douche bags. It's sobering to think that the country consists of bubbas and douche bags.


The guy is amazing, really: "we must destroy the centers of power." Who is this 'we' he talks about? Hedges is a guitar w/one string. Once a year he'll write a genuine declinist article, just to show he's au courant. Otherwise, he's beating the drum of revolution because he really does believe America can be turned around. He writes a 'farewell' to America--and then continues to stay, calling for a better America that is little more than a Disneyland fantasy. Who is the real Pied Piper, of wh/he speaks?


9:07 AM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Americans are wonderful people:

10:12 AM  
Anonymous Rollo Dice said...

I have an operative deep in the White House who reports that Trump
will pardon M. Berman for unpaid parking tickets, conspiring to
litter across state borders, and bad attitude in general about
America the Beautiful.

8:35 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I hope you all are having a great holiday season. Rt now I'm listening to Beethoven's 7th online. Whew! is all I can say.

The end of the yr, of course, tends to make one reflective; to think abt what has happened over the last 12 mos., and abt what might happen during the next 12. Covid has been a terrible scourge, of course; if I cd wish anything away, it might be that. But comparisons with the Black Plague are unavoidable: single-handedly, it washed away the Middle Ages and opened the door to the Early Modern period. Of course, as I explain in the Reenchantment bk, medieval Europe was already on its last legs. The whole economic arrangement was becoming nonviable, and the M.A.'s days were #d in any case. The same is true of American civilization. I.e., we have a plague that is killing hundreds of thousands and crippling the economy quite badly, *but* that 'civilization' (I use the word loosely) was already on its last legs. This just speeds things up. And truth be told, as the nation implodes, I doubt very many nations around the world will shed crocodile tears for us. We are genocidal, predatory, narcissistic, violent, and our way of dealing with ourselves and others is, to put it mildly, deeply unkind. All we know is hustling, competition, and me, me, me. Trump was the apotheosis of an ethos that stretches back to the late 16thC.

For that reason, it's a pity to see him go, at least from a declinist pt of view. He did so much damage in the last 4 yrs; he cd have done so much more if he had stayed in office. Our decline, of course, is secure; it's just that it will get slowed down a bit with Schmiden. Schmiden is really the 3rd term of the Obama admin, and the continuity will manifest itself in meaningless diversity appointments, globalization, neoliberal capitalism, continued war on anyone we don't like, and even genocide. At home, the system will grind the poor and the middle class into the dirt, even while millions of these folks will cheer for Trumpi and insist that the election was a fraud. It may be a death wish, the desire to be hurt; I dunno. Meanwhile, the bubbim and bubbot, the clowns and the 'Proud' Boys, will strut around impotently, doing zip.

Stupidity will continue its terrifying reign. An obvious example is that virtually all progs, including the ones w/high IQs, believe that our problem boils down to Trump, and that all we need to do to restore the US to its former place of strength and dignity (what a joke, that!) is to remove the 'cancer'. Almost none of them realize that Trumpi is a symptom of our dysfunctional way of life, and of our inevitable collapse. None wd agree w/Freud, that the place is a 'gigantic mistake'; that we are living in a Disneyland fantasy that has very little relation to reality, and that we are dying, crumbling from the inside, while Russia and China lick their chops. In any case, stupidity is only one among many factors bringing us down, as I delineated in the Twilight book, 20 yrs old this yr. But it says a lot, that Jay Leno can ask people who we separated from in 1776, and they say 'China'; or tell us that the major religion of Israel is 'Israelite'.

Speaking of which, it has been a fairly active year for antisemites, trollfoons, death-threaters, and generally miserable people on this blog; altho perhaps a bit less than in past years. They are of course the dumbest of the dumb, but it's possible that some of them are beginning to realize that I'm baiting them when I write that Jews rule the world, or that their bitter attacks hardly bother me anymore. "The dogs bark, but the caravan moves on." (old Arab proverb) However, after 14.5 yrs, I've learned a lot abt how deep the poison runs in the 'soul' of so many Americans. Talk abt sadness. Meanwhile, we've chalked up 412 posts and abt 5.25 million hits, during that time.

(continued below)

9:12 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Personally, it was a busy year for me. The publication of my short story collection, "The Heart of the Matter," was a great source of joy: it represents some of my best writing, imho. And then I've been working w/a Mexican friend on the translation of AWTY into Spanish. It comes slowly, but shd be published in Mexico City w/in a few months. I also, earlier this month, stumbled upon what I want to write next, and have started doing the research; but it's a rather vast project, and I doubt I'll be able to get it done inside of 5 yrs. However, as I'm old, senile, and decrepit, time is hardly of the essence; it doesn't really matter how long it takes. The pt of it all is to have fun--an impt Wafer motto.

And Wafers have a great sense of humor, often tragicomic. When I read, for example, of Americans who are dying of covid claim, as they are sliding into the grave, that the virus is a hoax, a commie plot--well, there really is something sadly funny abt that. When I watch, online, progs dancing in the street because Kamala Harris is black: more laughter (while shaking one's head). When I read abt how Americans dial 911 because McDonald's forgot to put bacon on their cheeseburgers, and then go on TV and defend their actions--well, 'nuf said. The country is little more than a circus, filled w/clowns.

Looking ahead, I have said a # of times that the US will be unrecognizable by 2030. We will be in the direst of economic straits, and much of the country will look like a wasteland (this is already underway). We will be, on the world stage, a third-rate power. No one will respect us (this development is also well underway). Secessionist stirrings will become stronger and stronger, leading to a national breakdown by ca. 2040. Suez Moments? Chinese hegemony will be an established fact by 2030. For those of you contemplating getting out, NOW wd be a very gd time to do it. No 'revolution' is going to save us, despite the demented call to arms by a few journalistic buffoons; no takeover of the centers of power is in the offing, and who exactly wd take these centers over, in any case? Tulsists? Schmernists? This is just more stupidity.

The economist Joseph Schumpeter coined the phrase 'creative destruction', meaning that for something new to be born, something old hasta die. As at the end of the Middle Ages, we understand the death part, but cannot yet see what the new will look like. We are like the characters in Shakespeare's "Tempest", hanging out in midair, at the edge of the known world. (It's a perfect document for our times, in fact.) I do hope that the 'new world' will be a better one, but changes on this scale only guarantee that things will be different, no necessarily better. For all any of us know, they cd be worse.

What will be left, at the end of time? I doubt that Chinese hegemony promises a better world; their record isn't exactly sterling. But check out the Twilight bk (p. 9), where I quote from E.M. Forster, "What I Believe," regarding an aristocracy of the plucky, and the considerate; those Paul Fussell referred to as 'Class X'. Wafers, in a word. For me, at least, this is the only flame worth being kept alive.

Merry Xmas, y'all!


9:13 PM  
Blogger Ordinary Indian said...

Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad all.

It is customary to wish and hope that the new year be all good. But, quoting MB, I wd also say 'For all any of us know, they cd be worse.' I am not really hopeful, not in the short to medium term at least, that things will get any better. China as the hegemon , Russia being what it is, and Modi's India being the challenger, the near future does not offer/inspire much hope. And in the long run, we are all dead.

So, all we can do is to enjoy/celebrate this oasis of heightened awareness, and, when things finally, completely fall apart, bask in the feeling that 'well, we saw it all coming, didn't we?'

Stay safe.

5:32 AM  
Anonymous Tino said...

"His work here is to become part of the fauna, to enter the understory, to encode himself in nature."

Very interesting story for the Wafer community

Merry Christmas guys

6:33 AM  
Blogger Mike Kelly said...

Merry Christmas and other assorted holidays MB and Wafers. Here's why I love this blog. Last post a Wafer named Abdel recommended a movie called The Brand New Testament:

What a great film! Many thanks Abdel. In that movie is music from a Handel opera called Rinaldo:

That musical piece has me hooked on Handel now, so I should thank Abdel for that also. And of course I have to thank MB for making this whole interchange of knowledge possible.

Here's the best Christmas music I've ever heard:

8:29 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


I kept telling them, but they just wdn't listen! ;-)


9:20 AM  
Blogger Dan Daniel said...

Americans being Americans. Another wave on top of the Thanksgiving wave.

"As Covid-19 continued to surge across America, its death toll close to 326,000 by Thursday morning, 84.5 million US residents were expected to travel around Christmas and New Year, directly flouting public health officials’ repeated warnings that such travel could worsen the pandemic yet further...

"The federal Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has said “travel may increase your chance of spreading and getting Covid-19” and continues to recommend “postponing travel and staying home, as this is the best way to protect yourself and others this year”....

"One woman, 34-year-old Jennifer Brownlee, was waiting for a flight at the Tampa airport to see her mother, who had just lost her leg, in Oregon.

"“My mom’s worth it,” Brownlee told the Associated Press. “She needs my help. I know that God’s got me. He’s not going to let me get sick.”

"Brownlee said she would put on a mask during the flight “out of respect”, but said her immune system and Jesus Christ would keep her safe."

11:55 AM  
Anonymous Malleus Maleficarum said...

I've been a bit out of action lately but I wanted to wish Merry Christmas to all the Wafers! I'm afraid I have nothing of much importance to say about the descent of the US into total moral and intellectual degradation, but I'd like to share a feel-good link. In these times of lock-down you can still visit some museums virtually (I know, I know, but better than nothing) so here is the Museo del Prado, starting with "La Maja Vestida":

1:19 PM  
Anonymous B. Louis said...

The Americanization of Narcissism.

I've been saying for a VERY long time that the diagnostic definition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder is practically useless here. Narcissism is the national baseline in America. What's the point of the distinction if it's the norm?

Just last night, I politely asked some 20 something kid to stay out of the elevator I was taking since he didn't have a mask on. Kid eyeballs me up and down, then proceeds to sigh like he hadn't gotten his baby bottle.

DEATH BEFORE INCONVENIENCE! <- Should be our national motto.

2:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Be sure to check out Bosch, and esp. the Goyas.

Dan D-

Buffoons; utter buffoons.


2:12 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


You remember McLuhan's comment, that the last thing a fish wd notice abt its environment is water. Hence, the reason why literally all analysts of America, even the most critical ones, miss the central issue: the problem of America is America! To paraphrase R.D. Laing: The problem I am trying to solve is the me that is trying to solve it. Gd luck w/that, I say.


3:21 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Wishing MB and all Wafers of the World a Happy Christmouse. I've decided that this new year should be dedicated to finding my Inner Tulsi (IT):

If I fall short at achieving Inner Tulsi, at least I will still have Herman Cain:

Come back, Herman, from the great pizza in the sky. America needs yr 999 plan.


4:18 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Saw Tulsi's face on you tube; almost lost my lunch. I do miss the 999 plan, however.


5:35 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Yes, it is that time of year for some truly American mental
illness and our faith in Scriptures.

8:20 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for this clip. The % of Americans that can truly be designated 'meatheads' is clearly very high. I love watching idiocy up close. "Stupidity excites me" (Gore Vidal).

Almost as delusional is the prog belief that diversity = social change, and that Biden is going to make things rt.


8:54 PM  
Anonymous Angel said...

China to overtake US as world's biggest economy by 2028, report predicts

Less than 8 years...

9:03 AM  
Anonymous Rene 3 said...

John Rawls stirring up debate again, I think we're @ like 50 years since the publication of "A Theory of Justice."

11:07 AM  
Blogger alex carter said...

Another excellent Umair Haque article/report on the Land Of Iks Who Drive Cars:

2:07 PM  
Blogger dermot said...

Another blogging / posting option is substack. Interesting article from the rotters at the Guardian:

Also, article mentions mailing lists / email options (so your posts also go out to a mailing list). It sounds like a crazy throwback to the late 1990s, but it really works. A lot of bloggers use mailing lists, as that way their posts end up directly in the users hands.

2:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Many thanks. I need to give Wafers an update on my struggle with the Google blogger disaster. I will repeat this message ca. Jan. 9.


This is an update on the blog situation.
1. Today I went with a computer friend to an Internet cafe, and tried to get into the blog. No dice.
2. I will return to Mexico City on Jan. 11, when the Code Red will be lifted. I will bring my home computer with me. On Jan. 12 I'll go to the office of Telmex, with my computer, and have them add a computer linkup to my fone acc't. I will then try to access the blog right there. If it works, the problem is solved, except for having to schlep my computer back and forth to Mex City every month. If it doesn't work, I'm going to explore an alternative blog. If nothing works, this blog will function only 12 days/mo. I hope it doesn't come to that.
3. If that's what happens, the blog will be inaccessible during Jan. 11-31.


4:14 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Gd article. Any rational person will admire Rawls, and appreciate what he was trying to do. Let me make a few observations.

1. De Tocqueville said democracy cd work, if one had an intelligent populace. So much for that.
2. Galileo formulated laws of falling bodies--in a vacuum, i.e., in an ideal situation. But falling bodies are subject to wind and rain, and at the very least, friction, in the real world. Galileo was a forerunner of the Enlightenment; Rawls was a child (product) of it. In the enlightened world, things are pure and rational. In the real world, they are messy. Hence, when Rawls 1st burst upon the scene, my own reaction was, "What planet is this guy on?" And the Guardian article, to its credit, echoes this sentiment.
3. Which is to say, real people have passion, including dark sides, wh/means that they might regard hustling as perfectly OK, as the poor as deserving of their low status, or as vested interests/big business corrupting democracy. Certainly in the US, almost no one 'plays fair', and it seems like a huge blind spot that Rawls didn't recognize this. One philosopher is quoted as saying that "A Theory of Justice" looks at issues as if they are confined to a senior common room at Harvard.
4. Many yrs ago, when I was teaching in Canada, I had a colleague who said to me: "There are two types of barbarism. One is where everything is completely irrational. The other is where everything is completely rational." No dummy, he.


4:49 PM  
Blogger Cyrillia Juniper said...


Thanks for the Umair Haque article. I think the post you linked to is the best summary of his many articles.

"So what do you expect to happen to a society in which people only ever grow poorer…in all the deep ways I’ve discussed…poor in health, poor in relationships, poor in opportunities, poor emotionally and socially and culturally…while the tiny few at the top get richer and richer, to astronomical, absurd degrees? That society has to collapse."

These types of poverty sound familiar, n'est-ce pas?

@GSWH: I completely support moving the blog to a different platform. Google is evil and the blogspot can only get worse. Best of luck in Mexico City.

8:32 PM  
Anonymous Kevin said...

Hmm...I agree with many of the sociological points in the Haque article but his ‘economics’ is as ludicrous as the mainstream charlatans he attacks. Rates are zero/negative because of intervention by the Fed. If risk were evaluated honestly rates would be high due to the risk premium. (Remember CD rates when Volker was in charge?) As he (correctly) points out, the U.S. is collapsing - you need to pay investors for that, which would happen without the machinations of the status quo in the actions of the Fed. What’s happening worldwide is what always happens with an economic system based on continuous growth.

9:13 PM  
Anonymous Megan said...

I saw a good clip today on YouTube by Erich Fromm, entitled "Normal Happy People". (I would post the link, but I'm on my Kindle and can't post links. But I wanted to mention it before I forget.) I think The Frankfurt School still has the best interpretation of what's wrong with us. You just have to overlook some of the things about which they were absurdly wrong. For example, Marcuse's idea that repressed sexuality was the source of most of our ills.

Of course, the Frankfurt School was talking about liberal bourgeois society in general, not just America. I think that their analysis still holds up, though, it's just that America has a more severe case of what the other Western liberal democracies are also suffering from. (A case of " mild schizophrenia" in Fromm's words, used in reference to the happy exterior that most people present, to cover over the great inner unhappiness and emptiness. More poignantly apt today, perhaps, in the middle of the holiday season.)

Incidentally, I think that the conservative regimes, like "Law and Justice" in Poland,and Orban in Hungary, are, to some degree at least, reactions to the fact that Western liberal democracy and consumerism have also proved to be false gods. This will likely prove true of any ideology that leaves out the spiritual dimension--another point on which Dr. Berman (the atheist!) is correct.

1:15 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

Dr. Berman,
I hope your computer problem can be solved quickly. After all, we want to be able to continue to see our hilarious Karens in action! Like that popular saying, “The show must go on!” So let’s enjoy another funny episode of Karen Sunday! LOL!

1:40 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Mystical atheist, actually. :-)


3:12 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Cdn't run it (24-hr rule).


6:22 AM  
Anonymous Caspar said...

“Future historians may yet come to describe the origins of modern governance as a cultural composite, assembled from Amer­indian notions of personal liberty, African social-contract theory, free-market economics inspired by medieval Islam, & Chinese models of the nation-state”

An essay on democracy’s indigenous origins in the Americas.

7:57 AM  
Blogger Brian said...


Nice that you mention the Frankfurt school, especially Eric Fromm. Something that stood out to me in reading Fromm and the like, is how limited the progressive solution really is. Even Noam Chomsky, if you watch his talks overall, seems to believe that the problem in our society is just the material distribution of wealth, technology and political power; What the Frankfurt school shows, is that even if equality and democracy were the case, we still would be miserable due to the deep psychological alienation and perversion of Western society— especially in the US.

In my observations of living in the US as a millennial, 98% are not able to be in authentically moved states of care/love for other persons. One example, I was sitting a few years ago in a University class and the professor shared with us a story about how when Katrina was bearing down on New Orleans, and while mostly black people were trying to get out, racist whites were guarding the roads and bridges to not let the N*****s into their suburbs. My authentic gut react to this, was to say spontaneously in an exacerbated but controlled tone, “That’s disgusting”.

My classmates and the teacher looked at me with blank stares like I was some sorta wierdo.

9:13 AM  
Anonymous Cherith Cutestory said...

Here's a revolting tidbit:

"Over the five years to 2020, [US prison] industry revenue has increased at an annualized rate of 0.8% to reach $5.1 billion."

There's many of those people who shake in joy at these profitable numbers who'll tell you how revolted they are of Southern slavery that took black people's liberty and treated them in a dehumanizing way just for profit, without a morsel of irony.

2:14 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

I was doing a bit of research and stumbled across this piece from 1995:

I have never heard of the author, Steve Erickson, but his head was certainly screwed on accurately. Holy Toledo, talk about prescient! I'm curious if any Wafers or MB is aware of his work.


5:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Hard to believe this was written in 1995. 5 yrs later I wrote that it was curtains for the US, while he had already said it.


5:45 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Chuck Steak sent one on Fri 25 Dec at 5:20 PM and the one you
rejected on Sun 27 Dec at 12:15 AM. Isn't this more than 24
hours apart? I think you got the times right but not the days.

6:45 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Oh, you cd be rt; I may have gotten confused. If so, sorry. Keep in mind that I am getting increasingly senile--just ask any trollfoon. Anyway, pls re-send yr 2nd post.


7:19 PM  
Anonymous Chuck Steak said...

Now, do be honest enough to admit that we will miss our boy and his stand-up comedy routines.
For years I've been warning him about this danger.
Hefner would have put her on the cover of Playboy or arranged to have her star in a porn movie.
Why not pack the court with some of his buddies he recently pardoned?

8:50 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Ach Du Lieber! Just think of the damage he could have done!


9:30 PM  
Anonymous Myotol said...

You mention illuminated ones in your article MB which refers to Tikkun Olam IMO.

11:46 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Nah...the true illuminati are those who eat pastrami, w/a side of cole slaw.


2:59 AM  
Blogger Joe McIlnen said...

The daily mass shootings in the United States continue; and they occur even during the “Holiday Season”. In this case we have yet another example of a “very fine member of the United States military” carrying out an act of murder.
Dr. Berman, do you think he got a military pre-boarding privilege for his flight from Florida to Illinois? And a discounted military airline ticket perk as well? While walking through the airport dressed in his he-man military fatigues, did he also get any of those “Thank you for your service, Sir” congratulations from the many dumb idiotic conservative Floridian Americans who worship him and his ilk? What do you think?

5:04 AM  
Blogger Marc L Bernstein said...

Just in case the ugly and horrible political events in the USA of the last couple of months were not enough bad news for you, there's plenty more :

"At current rates of deforestation, civilization will collapse in 20-40 years"

So what should our advice be for a young couple planning on having a few children? Should we tell them to wait? Should we tell them to have zero children? Or should we tell them to have 1 or 2 children "just for the heck of it"?

Anyway, which will collapse first, the USA or civilization itself? I'm betting that the USA will collapse first by a healthy margin. What does the collapse of civilization mean, anyway? Well, for one thing, it means many fewer cell phones. It means intermittent domestic electrification, at best. It means the electrical grid itself will collapse in some, if not most, locations. It gets worse than that - way, way worse.

5:06 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Massacres on a daily basis, as you say. These are not the result of 'crazy loners', wh/is what most Americans believe. It is the result of a certain way of life. This Americans cannot see, and it's not likely that they ever will.


No argument, amigo. This Americans also don't understand.


8:09 AM  
Anonymous Dave McBride said...


Here in Atlanta we have highest violence/ murder rate since 1999

Then, moving abroad:

We Are The Terrorists

8:44 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...


Thanks for the ref. What horrible pictures.


8:52 AM  
Anonymous Ram Gana said...

Commenting randomly, here. Not really following a specific topic.

I've been away from the blog for a few years. Not expecting anyone would remember me. My previous presence spanned only a few months, as I recall, and I never particularly inspired any discussion with my comments. I'm just glad to find the blog still going. Thank you, MB.

I honestly didn't expect the turmoil to reach this degree so quickly. It hasn't quite come to my front door yet, but I now genuinely fear it will get here. Four years ago, I still believed it would hold off beyond my ultimate demise (up to thirty years, which would represent some real luck in longevity for me, as I don't honestly expect to last another twelve, as of this day).

Had I achieved some critical self-knowledge by the time TAC was published twenty years ago, I might have had a shot at getting out. As it is now, my situation is rather like running on a rechargeable battery. As long as I don't use too much all at once, I can keep recharging it to a decent level. The expenditure it would take to relocate now would not only be a catastrophic drain in its own right, but it would also diminish the recharge capacity to a critical level. I estimate I would expire in less than a year.

9:18 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home