Article 43

 

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Global Hypnosis

image: zo,bies

Colleges across the country have transitioned from bastions of intellectual enlightenment to resort hotels prizing amenities above academics. The rigor of a universitys courses doesnt attract the awe of doe-eyed high school seniors. Lavish dorms and other luxuries do.
- Professors on Food Stamps, 2014
.

Ever wonder why NEWS SHOWS got all those circles swirling around the screen? 

EVER THINK it may have SOMETHING TO DO with MIND CONTROL?

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Internet of Things Formula for a Global Trance

By Jon Rappoport
Activist Post
March 28, 2018

Here is the psychology in a nutshell:

MAKE PEOPLE PASSIVE. PUT THEM IN A TRANCE.

IoT is the absurd plan - now rolling out - to connect every conceivable device to the Internet. Worldwide. This means life will become automatic for a large chunk of the population in due time.

Your car will drive you. Your fridge will order new food items. Your heat and air conditioning will operate beyond your control. Your toaster will decide how brown the bread will be. Your whole home will run on prescribed algorithms, deciding how much energy you can use and when.

You will become a spectator.

Passivity IS hypnosis.

Why would you care about WHAT’S HAPPENING beyond your bubble? As long as “functions are functioning,” all is well.

Of course, as you enter a decline in health, owing to the introduction of wireless 5G, the harmful technology necessary to implement IoT, and as your home devices spy on you and register your “symptoms,” there will be mandatory doctors’ visits. But don’t worry, you won’t have to leave your house. The diagnosis will occur on a screen in your hand, and the toxic medicine will arrive at your door. These drugs will make you more PASSIVE.

No, all this won’t happen tomorrow, but up the line, that is THE PLAN and the picture. Brave New World.

Ambition? Achievement? The will to succeed?

These former qualities will fade into extinction. No longer required. They existed merely to bring us to the point where TECHNOLOGY would take over.

And if you think the present EDUCATION SYSTEM is grossly inadequate, imagine what it will look like when “IoT homes” proliferate. If you can sit back and let your life run on automatic, why would you need to learn - anything?

At one time, my cardinal skill was flipping a switch that would automate all devices in my apartment. But now I don’t have to do that. The apartment is always ON. I can’t turn it off. “Who cares?”

Huge numbers of people won’t have IoT homes. The promise will go unfulfilled. This fact will set up a new class system. But with enhanced (automatic) security systems, and the backing of State force, the fortunate ones will be protected in formidable fashion.

Hypnosis works by “freeing a person from making choices.” He sits there. When he is suitably passive, he receives suggestions. In the case of IoT, those suggestions will be provided by his AI environment: “I’m here. I serve you. I give you what you need. I decide what you need. I’m your guide to happiness.” By doing less and less, you get more and more.

If you say, Well, “this is already happening,” youre right. But with IoT, the difference will be extraordinary.

On a broad scale, the basics of hypnosis - trance plus suggestions - will revolutionize human relationships. Interactions will occur at much lower levels of energy. The content of future communication will make today’s Facebook posts seem like conversations among university scholars.

But its all good.

If you want your children and grandchildren to float in a passive electronic dead sea.

If not, you’d better reinstate the old virtues. Ambition. Achievement. Will power. Independence. Self-reliance. Self-sufficiency.

The trance-breakers.

Finally, for now, as the IoT moves forward, people who accept it are going to start believing that the objects around them are seeing and perceiving and thinking. People are going to develop a strange metaphysics, in which objects are conscious and alive and all-knowing. People are going to hold fast to this premise. They are going to take the trance to a whole new level, in which the hypnotic suggestions are coming from gods.

That will increase the power of the suggestions by many degrees.

It always works this way. The source of the trance is elevated, until it becomes, for the faithful, a Vatican of ultimate truth

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Posted by Elvis on 03/28/18 •
Section Revelations • Section Spiritual Diversions
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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Third World U.S.A. Part 10 - The Gig Economy

image: gig economy

[L]ivery car driver Douglas Schifter killed himself outside the gates of City Hall, after writing in a suicide note posted to Facebook, “I will not be a slave working for chump change. I would rather be dead.”
- Democracy Now, March 22, 2018

“The Gig Economy” Is the New Term for Serfdom

By Chris Hedges
Truthdig
March 25, 2018

A 65-year-old New York City cab driver from Queens, Nicanor Ochisor, HANGED HIMSELF in his garage March 16, saying in a note he left behind that the ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft had made it impossible for him to make a living. It was the fourth SUICIDE BY A CAB DRIVER in New York in the last four months, including one Feb. 5 in which livery driver Douglas Schifter, 61, killed himself with a shotgun outside City Hall.

"Due to the huge numbers of cars available with desperate drivers trying to feed their families,” wrote Schifter, “they squeeze rates to below operating costs and force professionals like me out of business. They count their money and we are driven down into the streets we drive becoming homeless and hungry. I will not be a slave working for chump change. I would rather be dead.” He said he had been working 100 to 120 hours a week for the past 14 years.

Schifter and Ochisor were two of the millions of victims of the new economy. Corporate capitalism is establishing a neofeudal serfdom in numerous occupations, a condition in which there are no labor laws, no minimum wage, no benefits, no job security and no regulations. Desperate and impoverished workers, forced to endure 16-hour days, are viciously pitted against each other. Uber drivers make about $13.25 an hour. In cities like Detroit this falls to $8.77. Travis Kalanick, the former CEO of Uber and one of the founders, has a net worth of $4.8 billion. Logan Green, the CEO of Lyft, has a net worth of $300 million.

The corporate elites, which have seized control of ruling institutions including the government and destroyed labor unions, are re-establishing the inhumane labor conditions that characterized the 19th and early 20th centuries. When workers at General Motors carried out a 44-day sit-down strike in 1936, many were living in shacks that lacked heating and indoor plumbing; they could be laid off for weeks without compensation, had no medical or retirement benefits and often were fired without explanation. When they turned 40 their employment could be terminated. The average wage was about $900 a year at a time when the government determined that a family of four needed a minimum of $1,600 to live above the poverty line.

The managers at General Motors relentlessly persecuted union organizers. The company spent $839,000 on detective work in 1934 to spy on union organizers and infiltrate union meetings. GM employed the white terrorist group the Black Legionthe police chief of Detroit was suspected of being a member - to threaten and physically assault labor activists and assassinate union leaders including George Marchuk and John Bielak, both shot to death.

The reign of the all-powerful capitalist class has returned with a vengeance. The job conditions of working men and women, thrust backward, WILL NOT IMPROVE until they regain the militancy and rebuild the popular organizations that seized power from the capitalists. There are some 13,000 licensed cabs in New York City and 40,000 livery or town cars. The drivers should, as farmers did in 2015 with tractors in Paris, shut down the center of the city. And drivers in other cities should do the same. This is the only language our corporate masters understand.

The ruling capitalists will be as vicious as they were in the past. Nothing enrages the rich more than having to part with a fraction of their obscene wealth. Consumed by greed, rendered numb to human suffering by a life of hedonism and extravagance, devoid of empathy, incapable of self-criticism or self-sacrifice, surrounded by sycophants and leeches who cater to their wishes, appetites and demands, able to use their wealth to ignore the law and destroy critics and opponents, THEY ARE among the most repugnant of the human species. DON’T BE FOOLED by the elites’ skillful public relations campaigns - we are watching Mark Zuckerberg, whose net worth is $64.1 billion, mount a massive propaganda effort against charges that he and Facebook are focused on exploiting and selling our personal information - or by the fawning news celebrities on corporate media who act as courtiers and apologists for the oligarchs. These people are THE ENEMY.

Ochisor, a Romanian immigrant, owned a New York City taxi medallion. (Medallions were once coveted by cab drivers because having them allowed the drivers to own their own cabs or lease the cabs to other drivers.) Ochisor drove the night shift, lasting 10 to 12 hours. His wife drove the day shift. But after Uber and Lyft flooded the city with cars and underpaid drivers about three years ago, the couple could barely meet expenses. Ochisors home was about to go into foreclosure. His medallion, once worth $1.1 million, had plummeted in value to $180,000. The dramatic drop in the value of the medallion, which he had hoped to lease for $3,000 a month or sell to finance his retirement, wiped out his economic security. He faced financial ruin and poverty. And he was not alone.

The corporate architects of the new economy have no intention of halting the assault. They intend to turn everyone into temp workers trapped in demeaning, low-paying, part-time, service-sector jobs without job security or benefits, a reality they plaster over by inventing hip terms like ”THE GIG ECONOMY.”

John McDonagh began driving a New York City cab 40 years ago. He, like most drivers, worked out of garages owned and operated by businesses. He was paid a percentage of what he earned each night.

“You could make a living” [then], he told me. “But everyone shared the burden. The garage shared it. The driver shared it. If you had a good night, the garage made money. If you had a bad night, you split it. That’s not the case anymore. Right now we’re leasing” [cabs at the garages].

Leasing requires a driver to pay $120 a day for the car and $30 for the gas. The drivers begin a shift $150 in debt. Because of Uber, Lyft and other smartphone ride apps, drivers’ incomes have been cut by half in many cases. Cab drivers can finish their 12-hour shifts owing the garages money. Drivers are facing bankruptcies, foreclosures and evictions. Some are homeless.

“The TLC [New York City Transportation and Limousine Commission] wanted to limit yellow cab drivers to 12 hours a day,” he said, referring to the distinctive yellow cabs that have medallions and can pick up passengers anywhere in the five boroughs. There was a protest. Yellow cab drivers were protesting that they have to work a 16-hour day in order to make a living. It’s cut everything. “Everybody’s fighting for that extra fare. You would be at a light with two or three other yellow cabs. You saw someone up the street with luggage you would run the lights to get to them. Because that might be an airport job. You’re risking your own life, risking getting tickets, you’re doing things you would never have done before.”

“We don’t have any health care,” he said. “Sitting for those 12 to 16 hours a day, you are getting diabetes. There’s no blood circulation. You’re putting on weight. And then theres that added stress you’re not making any money.”

Uber and Lyft in 2016 had 370 active lobbyists in 44 states, dwarfing some of the largest business and technology companies, according to the National Employment Law Project. Together, Uber and Lyft lobbyists outnumbered Amazon, Microsoft, and Walmart combined. The two companies, like many lobbying firms, also hire former government regulators. The former head of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, for example, is now on the board of Uber. The companies have used their money and their lobbyists, most of whom are members of the Democratic Party, to free themselves from the regulations and oversight imposed on the taxi industry. The companies using ride-hail apps have flooded New York City with about 100,000 unregulated cars in the past two years.

“The yellow cab has to be a certain vehicle, said McDonagh. “It’s a Nissan.” [Nissan won the bid to supply the city’s cabs.] Every yellow cab has to charge a certain price. When that drop goes down, that’s regulated by the city. They added on all these extra taxes, for the MTA and for the wheelchair [half of all yellow cabs are required to be wheelchair-accessible by 2020], a rush-hour tax. Uber comes in. No regulations at all. They could pick whatever type of car they want. Whatever color of car. They could change prices when it’s slow. They can lower the prices. When its busy they can do price surging. It can be two or three times. Whereas the yellow cab is just plowing along at the same rate at the same time. Going to Kennedy Airport from Manhattan is $52. No matter what the traffic is like, no matter how many hours it takes you to get there. Uber will jack up its prices two or three times. You might have to pay $100 to get to Kennedy Airport. While the yellow cab industry is almost regulated to death, Uber is coming in with new technology, figuring out different ways how [it is] going to make money.  “Its finished, with the yellow cabs.”

Life for Uber and Lyft drivers is as difficult. Uber and Lyft use bonuses to lure drivers into the business. Once the bonuses are gone, these drivers sink to the same economic desperation as those driving yellow cabs.

“Uber is leasing cars,” McDonagh said. “They have car dealerships that will sell. They advertise as, ‘Listen, you can have bad credit. Come down to Uber. Well get you the money or loan to buy this car.’ And what they do is they’ll take the money directly out of what you’re making that day to pay for the loan. They can’t lose. And if you go under, they’ll sell the car back to the dealership and then redo it for the next immigrant driver. There’s a whole scam going on.”

“As a yellow cab driver, you don’t see the world vision,” he said. “But there’s that famous term - the RACE TO THE BOTTOM. You’re working more and more hours for less and less wages. This is the new gig economy. Someone will use an Uber to go to an Airbnb and get on his phone to order something from Amazon to eat in his house. All those shops are now gone. From cashiers to cab drivers. I feel like I’m a blacksmith or a typesetter at a newspaper business trying to explain to you what the yellow cab industry used to be. We’re becoming obsolete.”

“Guys are sleeping in the cab,” McDonagh said. “They’ll go out to Kennedy at 2 or 3 in the morning. They pull into the lot and go to sleep to catch [passengers off] the first flight that’s coming in from California a couple of hours later. You have guys who won’t go home for a couple of days. They’ll just stay out on the street. They roam the street to try to make money. It’s dangerous for the passenger. The amount of accidents will be going up because drivers are drowsy.”

McDonagh said Uber and Lyft cars must be regulated. All cars should have meters to guarantee an adequate income for drivers. And drivers should have health care and benefits. None of this will happen, he warned, as long as we live under a system of government where our political elites are dependent on campaign contributions from corporations and those who should be regulating the industry look to these corporations for future employment.

“We have to limit the amount of cabs, particularly here in New York City,” McDonagh said. If we did it in the yellow cab industry for 50 years, why can’t we do it with Uber? They’re adding 100 cars a week through the streets of New York. This is insane. When you call an Uber, the biggest complaint people have now is, ‘The car is here too quick.’ They’re there within two or three minutes. I can’t even get dressed. They’re rolling empty throughout the city, waiting for that hit.”

“Horses in Central Park are regulated,” he pointed out. There’s 150 of them. They make a great living there, the guys on the horse and buggies. Say Uber comes in and says, We want to bring in Uber horses. And we want to add 100,000. And let’s see how the market will handle it. We know what’s going to happen. No one will make money. They’re all around Central Park. And now no one can go anywhere because there are now 100,000 horses in Central Park. It would be considered madness to do that. They wouldn’t do it. Yet when it comes to the yellow cab industry, for 50 years all we could have was 13,000 cabs, and then within a year or two were going to add 100,000. Let’s see how the market works on that! We know how the market works.

“They [the horses] work less hours” [than cab drivers], he said. “They don’t work in hot and cold temperatures. If you believe in reincarnation, you should come back as a horse in Central Park. And they all live on the West Side of Manhattan. We live in basements in Brooklyn and Queens. We haven’t upped our status in life, thats for sure.”

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Posted by Elvis on 03/27/18 •
Section Dying America • Section Workplace
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Monday, March 26, 2018

Corporate Grief

image: youre fired

When the Workplace Breaks Your Heart

By Beth Killough
The Circle Experience
March 22, 2018

When I transitioned from my private practice as a therapist to leadership consulting in the corporate sector, I figured the psychic heaviness of my role would lift some. I knew that peoples work lives were ridden with relationship conflicts, extreme stress, boredom, and career confusion. They showed up in my therapy office with work complaints that often mirrored the struggles in their personal lives. We take ourselves everywhere we go, after all. Yet, I assumed the wounds at work didn’t cut as deep and that hearts and lives weren’t shattered the way they too often are at home. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Regardless of industry or job title, workplace grief is an epidemic. There is a veil of secrecy and silence around the ways that corporate practices abuse and neglect their talent in much of the same ways harassment has been swept under the rug. The machine of corporate change never sleeps and with it comes innovation, development, and growth. It can be a tremendous source of creativity and a needed palette cleanser when cultures are outdated. Departments reorganize, positions disappear or are redefined, massive layoffs, and radical leadership transitions. There’s really nothing wrong with it at first glance. For far too long, we have underestimated the impact these changes have on individuals and groups when we do literally nothing to support people through change. We seem to do a better job fostering homeless dogs and helping them to move through an adoption process.

When I discovered this was “a thing,” I became incessantly curious just how far-reaching the problem really was. So I started to ask the difficult questions, the ones that people don’t want to ask in the workplace. I found countless examples of confusion, FEAR, devastation as people crawled through change and loss in their jobs with absolutely no support offered. To best illustrate, we share with you here, a story offered to us by a client who generously offers her experience so we can see more vividly the plight of today’s professional and can hopefully reconnect with our humanity and make some simple but impactful changes.

One Friday in May 2008, I walked into the corporate job Id held for a year, and dropped by the bathroom before going to my desk. Inside was a young woman weeping, hands covering her face, her tears hitting her white blouse. It was disturbing, but I said nothing to her. I had no idea how to respond to someone sobbing at work, so I ignored her, assuming it was a private affair and would be rude of me to intrude. I walked around her to the stall, washed my hands as she sniffled and blew her nose behind me, and walked past her as I left. On the way to my desk, I passed several others who were crying. “What in gods name could be going on?” I wondered. Crying? In the open at work?

My boss’ boss had scheduled a last-minute MEETING with me on this Friday morning. I was 29 at the time, this was my first job in a huge corporation, and I didn’t know what that meant - I didn’t even worry about what it could mean. Now I know. LAYOFFS.

About 25% of our division was being laid off. I didn’t cry after my meeting, I SHOOK. I tried explaining my projects to the people who were to take them over, and my boss’s boss came over and told me to close my laptop. I needed to STOP WORKING IMMEDIATELY. The others would figure out my projects. I would have 5 weeks to try to FIND ANOTHER JOB INTERNALLY - jobs that didn’t exist - and I would have to stay home in the meantime. Don’t come into the office, they said.

Work was supposed to be family. A section on the yearly employee happiness survey was all about whether you could bring your full self to work, and experience psychological safety, although they didn’t phrase it that way. Our full selves were expected to be happy, and maybe a little quirky or passionate about hobbies. The definition of full selves didn’t include grief.

My best friend worked on the same floor as I had. SHE WAS NOT BEING LET GO. She continued to work, after comforting me for a while as I cried in her cubicle. At some point, she had her regular meetings to go to, and she went. People who were retained were expected to go back to work immediately, stiff upper lip, and work hard to save the ship from sinking in the 2008 recession. The departure of 25% of their “family” wasn’t discussed. If 25% of your actual family suddenly stopped being your family, wouldn’t you want to process it? Understand why? Grieve it?

There’s no space for that in the corporate world. Maybe you can’t bring your full self, or be treated like a full human being, at corporate work. This place, where you spend half your waking hours, bypasses grief like its a dirty secret. Keep your head down, and plow on. Drink your bafflement and tears and shock and anger away at one of the many booze stations in the office, or after work with some remaining coworkers, and at home. Don’t speak to those who have been let go. Give them space. even though they need support, and you need support. DON’T GET TOO CLOSE or you could catch what they got. There but for the grace of god go you.

I got my job back. They’d made a mistake in the layoff algorithm, they told me. But my team got re-organized, just one in countless re-organizations I’d be part of. Minor and major ones. One later team that truly did feel like a family at the head of it, the most inspiring leader I’ve experienced as our manager - was blown apart in one re-org. The managers were all replaced with new managers, the roles were all distributed or eliminated, and anyone who had been part of this thriving and vibrant team left quickly, except for me. I did what management on high told me. I gritted my teeth, careful not to publicly lament how fucked up it seemed for my highly effective team to be upended. Not express my anger. And not express how stricken with shock and sorrow I felt to have my work family moved and shuffled like chess pieces.

I recently moved to a new team, voluntarily, and heard from my old co-workers that it was just in time. They’d just completed the seventh re-org of my old team in seven months. I went back to their part of the office, and recognized only 3 out of 20-odd people. It was silent, and people looked grim, as if bracing for, or recovering from, a shock. They said that early in the re-orgs, a manager had emailed out a PowerPoint presentation on how to deal with change. They were supposed to read it, and move on. The somewhat threatening message explicitly told to us throughout all the re-orgs was, “If you don’t like change, you don’t belong here.” My translation: do not grow bonds here, and do not mourn, and don’t come to us with complaints or that growing seed of resentment in your belly. Suck it all up and move on.

Layoffs and forced shuffling of employees are hard on human beings. We are social mammals, after all. If the intention of the company is to have happy employees, and to foster the sense of psychological safety that makes a productive, collaborative, and healthy workplace, we should all treat each other like human beings. Capable of emotion. Driven by connection. We need a honest dialog after upheaval. We need a place to cry that’s not isolated in a bathroom.

So how can we do better? How can we attend to the human beings who are suffering and help them along? How can we embrace change but offer sources of stability so people can cope?

The answers are easier than we might think:

· Acknowledge the loss. People need to know that the pain they are feeling is real and normal. With all change (positive or negative) comes elements of grief. The worst thing we can do is pretend people arent affected. Offer people a voice, a place to talk about their feelings. Be sure to listen without trying to solve the problem or offer advice. Just listen.

· Rally around. It turns out that we can face just about anything if we don’t have to FACE IT ALONE. We are often scared to talk about the feelings associated with grief and loss, so we avoid those who are in pain. What they need most is kinship and community. Provide opportunities for people to come together for honest conversation. We need each other.

· Support uncertainty. We don’t always have answers but it’s essential to be transparent with the information we can provide and to let people know where we are in the process of stabilizing. Look for elements of stability and routine and actively use them as a group moves through change. Let people know they can ask questions and offer compassion for what its like to sit with those questions that cannot be answered. Humans struggle and flail in wide open space.

· Practice patience. During times of stress or pain, we often move slower and are less efficient. Expect this and plan for it. Let people know that it’s okay for them to take more time for self-care. We need to adopt a gentler, more humane approach to change. Rushing back into productivity only prolongs peoples emotional process. It’s counter-intuitive. Slowing down and making more space for feelings actually allows us to move through them more quickly and thoroughly.

· Relationship first. Take the time to truly get to know the people you work with and to actively build and shape the relationships. During times of stability, it makes work so much more rewarding. During times of change, those relationships are an invaluable resource. When we are connected in a genuine way, we are way more likely to help each other when change needs to happen. It isn’t that change itself is negative. On the contrary, it’s a necessary and beautiful thing to see a company, a team, or an individual evolve. And, its extraordinary when we can move through those changes and stay committed to the core values of our humanity.

· Take signs and symptoms seriously. Massive change and loss impacts our brain chemistry. So does stress. From a preventative perspective, leadership can consider that adequate support for big transitions can make a huge difference in a person or a group struggling with issues like depression or stress-related illness. This is a major healthcare issue and the costs for medical treatment outweigh the costs for building positive support systems. We can start to paying attention to signs and symptoms and walk toward conversations and solutions rather than ignoring or denying the realities around us.

It’s possible to make more human-centered choices in the workplace. Like this individuals story tells, people who work together can bond deeply and teams can become a source of community. When we consider re-organizing teams and layoffs, there’s a new conversation needed here and its one about cultural and social impact. It considers capitalistic concerns such as efficiency and profit/loss ratios but it takes seriously the relational needs of people. This conversation puts heart and humanity first.

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Posted by Elvis on 03/26/18 •
Section Dealing with Layoff
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Sunday, March 25, 2018

Why Don’t Americans Care About Each Other

image: learning to give

One of the sayings in our country is Ubuntu - the essence of being human. Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you cant exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. You cant be human all by yourself, and when you have this quality - Ubuntu - you are known for your generosity. We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole World. When you do well, it spreads out; it is for the whole of humanity.
- Bishop Desmond Tutu 2008

How Societies Based on Rivalry Become Lord of the Flies

By Umair Haque
Eudaimonia
March 2018

Heres a tiny question. Does a society prosper, mature, develop, grow? By people pulling themselves up?

Today, high school students across America are walking out. But lets remember exactly why. Because their elders HAVE ALLOWED gun massacres at schools, and appear totally unmotivated or unmoved to change it. Hence, its left to the vulnerable kids to fend for themselves. Pull yourself up!! How Lord of the Flies.

So. Why don’t Americans care about each other? After all, that high school students have to walk out en masse to demand, well, they don’t be massacred is a pretty good indication that Americans don’t.

(But perhaps you object to my question. Very well, lets consider it in a number of other ways. Americans won’t give each other working healthcare, education, media, transport, safety nets, retirement, mobility, stability. The result is lives like pressure cookers - boiling with stress, mistrust, despair, and rage. Hence, opioid epidemics, loneliness, depression, anxiety, anger. America is above all renowned today for being something like a new Rome: for its cruelty. But all that is just another way to say that Americans don’t care about one another.)

I think that the reason is hidden in plain sight. Americans have been taught to see one another as rivals - because the idea was that way, everyone would pull themselves up. Rivals, everywhere, in everything. Whether at work, in life, or at play. It is something like the most rivalrous society that has ever existed. But that led to a catastrophic outcome: people forever pulling each other down, instead of lifting themselves up. And a society, economy, and democracy cannot function that way. There are better ways.

Let me give you a small but telling example. My friend recently got her “performance review.” It was full of sniping and bitching and pettiness: ”NEGATIVE FEEDBACK.” Now, she’s great at what she does - really. She’s never once had “negative feedback” in her life. She was shocked. But that’’s because she’s from Canada. I had to explain to her: this is just what Americans do: they have learned how to game this system of “review” by constantly being savage with one another - instead of being honest, its better to talk down everyone else, and get ahead that way. And so these “review systems” quite obviously don’t work in America - its leaders are nothing of the kind, of the lowest calibre imaginable, whether in business, politics, law, or media.

Do you see my point? Let me make it clearer.

What happens in the end if we make rivalry the fundamental principle of society - the one great ideal that orders and defines it that people see one another as bitter rivals to defeat? American thinking suggested the following outcome: that people would compete to pull themselves up, and that way, everyone would rise.

But it forgot one crucial detail. There are two ways to compete. By pulling yourself up or dragging others down. Now, which is less costly, which one requires less effort, time, imagination? Which only takes brutality, muscle, and cunning? Pulling others down, obviously. You can pull people down with a tug or a punch. But lifting yourself up? You have to fight gravity. You have to find a foothold. You have to look up and be blinded by the sun. In other words, you need empathy, compassion, grace, and courage. How much easier to just pull down. The economics are simple: pulling others down is much less costly than lifting yourself up, and that is the fatal mistake American thought made, but still HASN’T LEARNED yet.

And so the RESULT is now. A society of people forever pulling one another down, just like crabs in the proverbial bucket, each one trying to escape, but only ensuring none go anywhere. Lord of the Flies - remember?

When life becomes rivalry, the result is that relationships get blown apart, that institutions - which depend on genuine relationships - erode, that norms of decency and humanity corrode. An atmosphere of cruelty is produced when life becomes rivalry - but nothing can really function amid such absolute cruelty, not even basic things like performance reviews, let alone democracy, society, or the economy.

Democracy depends not on rivalry, but on a sense of COOPERATION, of people standing together. But because life is rivalry in America, the only people who stand together anymore are the extremists. Society depends not on rivalry, either, but on people crafting a fair and expansive social contract, that provides everyone some minimum level of well-being - otherwise, a society is broken by definition. And you think an economy depends on bitter, bruising rivalry - thats what American thinking says, after all - but you, and it are wrong: an economy depends on people being able to work together, for one anothers real human benefit, on things of genuine worth, accomplishments that matter. In genuinely transformative ways - not just those that please a Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk or Zuck’s quarterly profit imperative.

So America is profoundly broken because rivalry has made stunted its democracy, society, and economy - they do not have the raw materials they need to really elevate human lives anymore: concern, passion, imagination, empathy, creativity, authenticity, trust, beauty, and truth.

What has all that been replaced with? Well, what is a life of such constant, intense, bitter rivalry like? Well, it means that everyone in your life is an adversary, opponent, or enemy - though you might call them your colleague, peer, coworker, classmate, they are really just your rival. So you don’t really friends, hence, “frenemies” you don’t really do work of service, your primary goal is to compete; that you measure yourself by how many people you have defeated, bested, and thrown down - not by how meaningful, rich, and worthwhile your life really is. A life of rivalry is full of stress, pressure, fear, and misery. One quickly becomes paranoid, fragile, bitter, and toxic.

How funny. How sad. How terrible. AMERICAN THINKING does not yet understand that rivalry does not work as the ordering principle for society because it is always cheaper to pull someone else down than lift one’s self up. To be cunning, ruthless, and deceitful is always easier than being compassionate, gentle, courageous, and strong.

But none of that is even the real tragedy.

It never CONSIDERED the third possibility at all - the greatest one of all. That people do not have to lift themselves up, or pull each other down. That they can lift each other up, too. That is what happened elsewhere in nations that developed expansive social contracts, with healthcare, education, retirement, etcetera, and now live vastly longer, happier, saner, healthier lives. Remember those poor high school kids, left to fend for themselves? Exactly.

Let us hope they LEARN this lesson.

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 03/25/18 •
Section Revelations • Section Dying America • Section Spiritual Diversions
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Friday, March 23, 2018

American Suicide Is In The Cards

image: the end is near

The New Color Line: American Suicide Is In The Cards

By Dr Paul Craig Roberts
March 12, 2018

Identity Politics is turning white people into a delegitimized group that it is permissible to hate and to discriminate against. WHITE AMERICANS are being TURNED INTO undesirables and are being delegitimized just as Jews were delegitimatized in Nazi Germany. Curiously enough, as I understand it, the Identity Politics being used to delegitimize white people has its roots in the Jewish cultural Marxism of the Frankfort School.

Most Americans are unaware of Identity Politics, and those who hear about it dismiss it as something silly. But it is the core politics of the Democratic Party and the liberal/progressive/left that is rivaling the neoconservatives for control over the American psyche.

I wrote about the article in the Texas Tech student newspaper that declared WHITE DNA TO BE ABOMINABLE. We should all take notice that Identity Politics has reached into a deep South technical school. The article was approved by the papers editors and also perhaps by the faculty advisers. An article that declared black or Jewish DNA to be abominable would most certainly not have been approved, and anyone who wrote such an article would at a minimum have been sent for sensitivity training.

The situation appears to be far worse in the prestigious, formerly WASP universities, such as Yale and Stanford. I don’t know the website, but THIS ARTICLE seems truthful and not a spoof.  Both universities, along with top rank state universities such as the University of Wisconsin and many other universities and colleges teach that white people, not global robber baron corporations or Wall Street crooks or corrupt politicians (unless they are white) are the source of evil, of oppression, of racism and enslavement of women.

Curiously, white women are considered simultaneously to be oppressors and enslaved by men. But this inconsistency does not trouble the Identity Politics ideology that is now a powerful political movement in America that has placed a target on the back of every white heterosexual male and every statue of a white male. Even plaques commemorating the attendance of George Washington and Robert E. Lee at Christ Church, Alexandria, Virginia, have been removed because they are דoffensive. Identity Politics has succeeded in obliterating the memory of America’s first president, who won the War of Independence from the British, from the pre-revolutionary church that he attended.

Twenty-three years ago Lawrence M. Stratton and I predicted in our book, The New Color Line, that the racial and gender quotas established by Alfred W. Blumrosen, compliance chief of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, in blatant violation of the 1964 CIVIL RIGHTS ACT, which explicitly prohibited quotas, would destroy the American goal of equality before the law by establishing legal privileges that would exclude white men. No prediction has ever been more correct. see: THIS.

The 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed in order to give a legal basis to the 14TH AMENDMENT to the Constitution requiring equality under the law. Congress understood that equality under law precluded special privileges, such as quotas for university admissions, employment and promotions based on alleged past discrimination.

However, Alfred Blumrosen, a Jew, who found himself in control of the regulatory agency designated as the enforcer of the Civil Rights Act, decided to ignore the law and to create a quota regime that violates equality under the law. Blumrosen reasoned, and turned out to be correct, that, based on the New Deal experience, Federal courts would defer to the regulatory authority, which was him, in place of the intent of Congress.

In place of equality under law, Blumrosen went for equality of result. To Blumrosen that meant that the same proportion of blacks had to have middle class educations and incomes as whites. The consequence was federal lawsuits against universities and employers that did not have quotas that advanced less qualified blacks and women over white men.

Stratton and I have heard that Blumrosen praises us for designating him as the person who made second class citizens out of white males as he regards it as a high achievement.

The next step in the delegitimization of white people, especially heterosexual males, occurred following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the transformation of Maos China to capitalism. This destroyed the ideological basis of the Western leftwing. The exploitative, imperialist capitalist had been the target for decades, but now that history had proved Karl Marx wrong, revealing that there was no alternative to “democratic capitalism,” the need to hate that is concentrated in the liberal/progressive/left had to find a new target. They found it in Jewish cultural Marxism’s analysis of institutions associated with the Frankfort School, which moved from Germany to Columbia University in the 1930s. The Frankfort School placed the source of oppression in the institutions of Western society.

Members of the Frankfort School saw themselves as analyzing REAL PROBLEMS. Identity politics, seeing the institutions of Western society as white, male-dominated institutions, simplified the analysis by defining the problem as whiteness. Thus, white males became the oppressive force to be overthrown. The working class, redefined by Hillary Clinton as the Trump deplorables, has been abandoned by the liberal/progressive/left.

Just as with Marx truth is “class truth,” with Identity Politics, truth is race, gender, and sexual preference truth, and just as the capitalists didnt have objective truth, under the Identity Politics form of Marxism whites do not have truth. Even science is being unmasked as a tool of white oppression. Truth resides with the “racial minorities” (actually a large majority in the world) and the LGBTQ+ minority in America.

The effect of this hostility toward whites, especially white boys in the American public school system, is devastating. Essentially, the public school system is committing genocide against white males. Tucker Carlson reports the effects HERE

It is extraordinary that the US military/security complex, which regards the US as a hegemonic superpower, sits silently while Identity Politics destroys the confidence and self-esteem of the warrior class. Is the Pentagon going to field armies of feminists and self-pitying LGBTQ+ who see themselves as society’s victims against highly motivated and trained Russians?

What is going on here? The suicide of the United States of America?

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 03/23/18 •
Section Revelations • Section Dying America
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