Latest Activity

Grinning Cat replied to Ruth Anthony-Gardner's discussion Systemic Racism - Contact Legislators in the group All things #TrumpSewer
"I've called my congresscritters' offices, telling the Republican senator that the…"
7 hours ago
Mrs.B commented on Doone's group Humans of Earth and the Biggest Loser of All Time (SCUMP) News
"Works for me!"
8 hours ago
Doone commented on Michel's group The Daily Cosmos or Interesting Facts about the Universe
"Awesome!!  This ESA Gaia animation shows the proper motions of 40,000 stars, all located…"
8 hours ago
Doone commented on Doone's group Humans of Earth and One Sore Loser Named Scump News
"Saw This on Twitter - BLOAT - Biggest Loser of ALL Time"
8 hours ago
Grinning Cat commented on Loren Miller's group Quote Of The Day
"(Correction: that recording of War is a Racket was read by John Greenman.)"
10 hours ago
Grinning Cat commented on Loren Miller's group Quote Of The Day
"An actual quote from War is a Racket: The only way to smash this racket is to conscript…"
10 hours ago
Grinning Cat commented on Loren Miller's group Quote Of The Day
"Thanks! I found War is a Racket online, both as a recording of Gen. Butler's speech and…"
10 hours ago
Grinning Cat commented on Randall Smith's group Just sports stuff.
"Just a random comment to Stephen: I'm an American who takes absolutely no offense with your…"
10 hours ago
Grinning Cat joined Randall Smith's group

Just sports stuff.

Just sports stuff.See More
10 hours ago
Grinning Cat replied to Joan Denoo's discussion Open Society University Network: Local and global issues
"...over the years, Tory governments weakened the [Open University] system... Reminds me of the…"
11 hours ago
Randall Smith commented on Randall Smith's group Just sports stuff.
"So I see this football player crossing himself before receiving a punt, only to be tackled so…"
15 hours ago
Onyango Makagutu commented on Loren Miller's group Quote Of The Day
"Grinning Cat thanks for the recommendation. I will check it out. And while on the subject of war, I…"
16 hours ago
Loren Miller commented on Loren Miller's group Quote Of The Day
"The Good is that which leads to health, The Right is that which leads to peace. Purpose is ours to…"
17 hours ago
Stephen replied to Joan Denoo's discussion Open Society University Network: Local and global issues
"Thanks, Joan interesting read. Very helpful. In the sixties, the then Labour government…"
18 hours ago
Joan Denoo posted a discussion

Open Society University Network: Local and global issues

I ran across this plan for education that takes on the challenges facing us in 2020. We have had…See More
19 hours ago
Chris B commented on Joan Denoo's group All things #TrumpSewer
"I expect nothing good from someone who thinks only of himself."
20 hours ago
Stephen commented on Hope's group Imagine No Organized Religion
"Chris B I live in on estate where over the years Shia Muslims have become a majority and even…"
20 hours ago
Chris B commented on Hope's group Imagine No Organized Religion
"I wish more muslim women here would look like that - easier to talk to."
20 hours ago
Mrs.B commented on Sydni Moser's group Coffee Break
"Yes, it was all over my pc too. I'll just stay home with my kitties....they don't lie,…"
21 hours ago
Grinning Cat commented on Sydni Moser's group Coffee Break
"Mrs. B, speaking of loopholes, I recently read about the Aztec-themed pub "400 Rabbits"…"
21 hours ago

We are a worldwide social network of freethinkers, atheists, agnostics and secular humanists.

”However biased it was towards the interests of the rich and however hostile it was to the poor and minorities, the capitalist democracy at least offered the possibility of incremental and piecemeal reform. Now it is a corpse.” 

”It is an elaborate and empty reality show funded by the ruling oligarchs — $1.51 billion for the Biden campaign and $1.57 billion for the Trump campaign — to make us think there are choices. There are not. The empty jousting between a bloviating Trump and a verbally impaired Joe Biden is designed to mask the truth. The oligarchs always win. The people always lose. It does not matter who sits in the White House. America is a failed state.” 

”There were many actors that killed America’s open society. 

  • The corporate oligarchs who bought the electoral process, 
  • The courts and the media, and whose lobbyists write the legislation to impoverish us and allow them to accumulate obscene amounts of wealth and unchecked power,  
  • The militarists and war industry that drained the national treasury to mount futile and endless wars that have squandered some $7 trillion and turned us into an international pariah,  
  • The CEOs, raking in bonuses and compensation packages in the tens of millions of dollars, that shipped jobs overseas and left our cities in ruins and our workers in misery and despair without a sustainable income or hope for the future,  
  • The fossil fuel industry that made war on science and chose profits over the looming extinction of the human species, 
  • The press that turned news into mindless entertainment and partisan cheerleading,   
  • The intellectuals who retreated into the universities to preach the moral absolutism of identity politics and multiculturalism while turning their backs on the economic warfare being waged on the working class and the unrelenting assault on civil liberties,  
  • The feckless and hypocritical liberal class that does nothing but talk, talk, talk.” 

Views: 33

Replies to This Discussion

Hedges seems to indulge in fecklessness more than a little bit here with his own "talk, talk, talk," never mind being needlessly hyperbolic in his commentary.  His bullet points, while at least somewhat accurate, are nonetheless generalizations, and his overall attitude appears to be: "We're fucked; there's nothing to be done about it; I quit."

How much I can do about the current state of this planet obviously is pretty questionable, yet I continue to chop my wood, carry my water, and to the best of my ability keep my own house in order.  I provide feedback to my elected officials, regarding issues of concern to me, but I do NOT so involve myself with that feedback that I fail to live my life apart from that activity.  To me, a large portion of why the world is in its current state traces back to a failure on the part of the majority of its inhabitants to PERCEIVE the world as it is and ENGAGE it.  I suspect there is a considerable degree of ennui and indifference extant which can too easily vitiate the motivation to be involved and affect improvement.  How to change that on a large scale?  At the risk of mimicking Dr. Leonard H. ("Bones") McCoy: "I'm an engineer, not a sociologist," and ill-equipped to provide what might be an intelligent answer, other than to recommend the course of action I summarized above.

What I WON'T do is bemoan the situation as Hedges has here as though we are helpless to alter it.  That kind of caterwauling is worse than useless to me, and if he bothered to think about it, to him as well.

I might agree with Hedges views on the state of American democracy and the degree in which the two parties have failed and even betrayed the working people of America, but then to make the decision to totally opt-out of the political process and to shout and bemoan his disgust from the sidelines is unforgivable. 

Indeed.  He enumerates the problem with no small amount of exaggeration, but can't be bothered to suggest solutions.  That kind of attitude IS part of the problem!

Solutions to such complex problems aren't easy to articulate, Loren. Deep revolutionary changes are necessary, such as examination of human limitations, exposing complicated hidden finance flows, short-comings of how we pay for mass communication, even painful self-examination of identity and our basis for self-esteem. Even the sociology of revolution is relevant. Our brains are wired for simple stories with clear cause and effect. Audiences don't even have the attention span to comprehend several novel ideas that interconnect. (Unless it's feed to them like a soap opera.)

Joan, I was just reading an academic article about this, especially point one.

Affluent Authoritarianism: McGuire and Delahunt’s New Evidence on P...

... McGuire and Delahunt flatly dismiss notions that anyone’s opinion about public policy outside of the top 10% of affluent Americans independently helps to explain policy.

Page and Gilens themselves were clear that opinion within the top 10% of the income distribution may well be a proxy for opinions of the top 1 or 2 percent. 

... variable affecting policy outcomes…is the transfer of large amounts of money to policy makers from the wealthiest sources focused intensely on particular policies.”

The political coalitions at work in these cases quite transcend business associations.[xii] Individual firms and investors virtually always dominate.[xiii]

... the mobilization of big money with its comet-like trail of social networks, subsidized op eds, subservient think tanks, and journalists seeking applause and better positions. That is how the reality of money-driven political systems shows up in surveys.

In money-driven elections and policymaking, you will have candidates, elections, real competition that is not collusion, and all kinds of noise, but when the smoke clears – and there will be lots of handsomely subsidized smoke – average (“median”) voters will not determine where policy settles. This doesn’t mean that elections do not present real choices: divisions among oligarchs can really matter.

... a form of affluent authoritarianism.[emphasis mine]

"There is no check left on corporate power." Hedges most succinct sentence, to me, Joan. 


© 2020   Created by Atheist Universe.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Service