Deja-Vu All Over Again

 By Angela Borozna (reprinted from Russia Insider)

I grew up in Siberia during the Cold War and remember my fears of the United States. Images of Hiroshima were quite frequently aired on TV, and war evacuation plans were practiced at schools and at work places. We all knew where the closest bomb shelter is. Children during school recess discussed how much longer we would live before America destroys us. The math teacher explained algebra and geometry on the example of the “Star Wars” – not the movie, but the defense system that was so much discussed in the media. I remember being scared to go to sleep at night – what if America drop a nuclear bomb, while I am sleeping?

In November 1982, all factories in my industrial hometown turned on their sirens, which no one heard before (they were made to announce a special emergency situations, like war). The cars joined in with long honks. The whole city was filled with terrifying sound. It was similar to what we saw as the beginning of the war in all those movies about WWII, that we all grew up on. Without knowing yet the reason for this sound, kids panicked. We thought that this was the beginning of the war with the U.S. Shortly after, a grave and profound voice announced on the radio the death of Brezhnev. Life continued…

Until the age of fifteen, I sincerely believed that the United States of America is the most evil country in the world, ‘the evil empire’, which already demonstrated to the world with Hiroshima that it would not think twice to drop a nuclear bomb on the civilians. Yes, the same phrase ‘evil empire’ was used in the U.S. and U.S.S.R. to describe each other.

What could Russians think of America back than? Of course, we believed it was an “embodiment of evil, that wanted to spread capitalism and destroy the country that is looking for fairness for everyone.” For most Americans it would sound familiar. Just turn it upside down: “Russia is a communist country that is determined to destroy capitalism and spread communism world wide.”

Things changed during Perestroika and Glasnost and my fears of the U.S. turned into admiration, fueled by an overload of new information, praising American achievements and criticizing everything Soviet. Young imagination runs wild and soon I had a dream – I have to go to America, to this ‘land of freedom and opportunities’!

I came to the United States in 1991 full of excitement and preconceived ideas of ‘democracy’, ‘freedom of speech’ and during my first years in the United States, I was sure that I finally came to a propaganda-free world! I believed everything I read in the newspapers. The word babushka in every news story about Russia was annoying, but harmless, just like constant images of old women in scarves were strange – there are plenty of young people in Russia, I thought. Drunk Yeltsin was praised for “doing good work bringing Russia into the circle of Western democracies,” while oligarchs and “western advisors” were rubbing millions of Russians of their savings and putting them on the knees.

I started waking up around 2000, when everything in the news about Russia started getting portrayed in the negative light – the good developments were omitted and the negative took the front raw. This twisting became systematic.

The lies that led to the war in Iraq completely opened my eyes. Most of the Americans around me believed the news and rooted for the U.S. invasion. I could not understand why they didn’t see the obvious. I guess, you have to grow up with propaganda to be able to see it – you develop the ‘sixth sense’.

Even now, when the lies about the pretext to the U.S. involvement in Iraq are known, most Americans believe their news outlets and diligently watch or read their propaganda of choice: CNN, Fox, ABC, or for more intellectual – The New York Times or Washington Post. Talking to my fellow Americans reveal the degree of delusion about the Ukrainian or Syrian events.

It is disappointing that the country, which likes to portray itself as a beacon of democracy and free speech, had turned to what it condemned over the years – suppression of information.

Perhaps, Americans are just very trustworthy people – they trust that their government will do what is best for them. Or, perhaps, American propaganda machine is much more effective than the Soviet one ever was – it is more subtle, you don’t notice that you are completely duped.

By following the American mainstream news, you are led to believe that Russia is ‘an aggressor’, but you are not told that it is the U.S., and not Russia, that maintain 800 military bases around the world, while Russia has only two, both of them in the former Soviet republics. It is not Russia, that is fueling color revolutions and deposes democratically elected leaders.

Reading statements by the U.S. presidential candidates about ‘standing up to Russia’, or the U.S. congressmen approving arms supplies to Ukraine and to the ‘moderate rebels’ in Syria ‘to fight Russians’ makes me wonder how much long it will take when the war of words will turn into a real war between two nuclear powers?

Just like many years ago, I am scared of America and its foreign policy, which might bring us all to nuclear disaster.

65 Responses to Deja-Vu All Over Again

  1. Pingback: Deja-Vu All Over Again | kulturCritic

  2. Thank you sharing your thoughts. They mirror the thoughts and feelings of many Americans as well. We must all come to the realization that we, the people, both Russians and Americans alike, want nothing of these political war games. In fact, the PEOPLE WANT PEACE and Prosperity for All.
    As a people and as nations, none can benefit from war, we never have…except the Bankers and the Elite. All wars are rich man’s wars, we have simply been nothing more than cannon fodder for their evil games of death and destruction, greed and power.

    The truth is, it’s always been this way…and now it’s time to stop it…time to refuse it…time to stop giving our consent and going a long with this insanity. We, as a collective people of this planet must begin coming working together to put a stop to this madness. WE MUST BE THE CHANGE WE WISH TO SEE IN THE WORLD…and we can do it by coming together in truth and integrity with love for all of our fellow humans and the precious planet we call home.
    Many Blessings

    • Angela says:

      Agree! Common people don’t want wars – wars are staged by those, in power. But what we can do is to be aware of lies and stop their spread and wake up sleeping heads to the reality!

  3. Disaffected says:

    Great post. Living here in the US, I can tell you that most of are sleep-walking through our lives. The poor are consumed with paying the bills and keeping their head above water, while those a notch or two above them are consumed with not joining their ranks and/or consuming the few luxury goods they can afford. The managerial and professional classes are mostly made up of shameless boot-lickers and professional sycophants, having bought the party line that their *exceptional* abilities have led to their success, as Americans all imagine themselves to be uniquely capable and empowered among all the world’s citizens.

    It’s all, of course, a mass delusion, but one that’s immensely powerful and which has been sold to us every waking minute from birth. Capitalism, whatever else you might think of it as an economic system, is a 24/7 “secular religion” here in the US and motivates everything we say and do, from our politics and politicians, to our religions and our religious leaders, to our schools, our military, our entertainment, or medical care (or lack thereof), our food distribution systems, and maybe most glaringly, our sports. With Obama Care (the ACA) and the Supreme’s recent Citizen’s United v.the FEC decision, we now have cradle to grave economic activity – corporatization if you will – built into everything we say or do, which has always been the goal.

    As for the nuclear threat, it’s never proved to be quite the boon that the little hairless ball sack Harry Truman imagined it would be. Yes, it allows us to unzip and swing our scrotums about to and fro on the world stage like a drunken sailor on shore leave, but it’s got one nasty side effect. If the people we threaten with it refused to be cowed, then our only option left is to actually use the damn things, and they have pretty nasty and unpredictable side effects, the greatest of which is that once everything’s reduced to smoking, glowing rubble, it’s pretty hard to go in and sell people shit, even if that shit is medical care to save their ruined lives. Likewise, capitalism’s pretty much run out of ideas as well, as once all the money’s been hoovered up by the plutocrat investor class, what’s the point of it all after that? To print yet more worthless scrip forever and ever Amen? Pretty hard to sell people shit when they’ve got no money to buy it with, no matter how many laws you pass compelling them to do so.

    And thus, here we are in 2015, with a US false-flag enabled Global War *of* Terror waged against no one and everyone including our own citizens, meant primarily as a means of distraction and as an elimination device for everyone who fails to buy into *the program*(TM), with no definable and achievable goal, such that we could ever declare victory and stop the madness. What could possibly go wrong?

    • Angela says:

      Great comment! That’s very accurate picture ofAmerica I see around me. Most people are not interested to know what is happenning outside the country. Most Americans are Sleepwalking, as you said, lulled by the media! It is rare to meet a person outside of academia, who can maintain a conversation on foreign policy.

      • Disaffected says:

        Are you the Angela who wrote the post?

        • kulturcritic says:

          Yeah, DA… that’s her!

        • Disaffected says:

          Angela,

          I Googled you and checked out your bio online. Looks like you’re doing good (as in well-meaning) work. Too bad you had to find out about us Americans the hard way. We’re an odd lot at this late stage of our devolution. I’d like to add that we haven’t always been this way, but I’m not sure that’s true. I think we have, but it’s only lately been fully revealed. Cheers!

          DA

    • Disaffected says:

      I’m trying to figure out what to make of this latest Russian plane crash. Putin and Russian officials are remaining tight-lipped, whereas US officials seem to be quite eager to fill in the information gaps in their absence, hinting more an more directly that this was an ISIS terror event, presumably a bomb. But of course, we all know that ISIS is but a thinly veiled US dark ops proxy, and combined with the fact that the US still harbors a grudge for getting caught red-handed in the MH17 affair, I can’t help but postulate that this was a US/ISIS channeled revenge event where, once again, just as in the MH17 event, both sides know what’s actually going on*, but are playing their cards close the vest for propaganda purposes and to see who blinks first**.

      *Putin has publicly stated several times that he knows what happened to MH17 – essentially daring US officials to call his bluff and dare him to lay his cards implicating them on the table – and that the responsible parties know that he knows, all of which is totally vindicated and affirmed by US officials’ sheepish silence, after their initial premature and totally unfounded accusations.

      ** If I’m right, then US officials are essentially doubling down on their MH17 wager by staging an event that directly threatens Russia, rather than one that merely implicates Russia in a terrorist event risking US/World condemnation and/or retribution, and daring Putin to engage in a little thrust and parry by naming names and thus, once again, possibly provoking war. And if all that’s correct, it means that US interests, as signaled by its Ukraine and MH17 misadventures previously, are indeed itching for war. Needless to say, if that’s the case, then 1.) we are indeed still right at the brink, and 2.) some sort of dire news and/or predictions of which the general public is not privy is driving US actions.

      • Disaffected says:

        And right on time the US follows up with a full-court media blitz straight out of Wag The Dog about the drone strike killing of “Jihadi John,” as an absurd of a fictional comic book caricature of a villain as there ever was, followed up by Dark Ops sponsored “terrorist” attacks in Paris on Friday. Whatever their overriding goals, they appear to be up to something really big headed into a US Presidential cycle. I would say it’s probably time for us ordinary citizens to be really scared about now, but what’s the point? Things have already spun so far out of control that we’re probably helpless to stop it anyway. Should be a fun ride to the bottom!

          • Disaffected says:

            The party line over here seems to be congealing around the fact that ISIS is an existential threat to civilization(!!!) now, so I guess we should salute the puppet masters for a job well done. No doubt in my mind whatsoever that Paris was a Dark Ops sponsored Shock Doctrine event. The timing was a dead giveaway. It will be interesting to see what happens next. Looks like the US is trying to rally popular support in Europe for a full blown conflagration to reinforce the international security state, presumably with US directed forces leading the charge. I’m sure Putin is well aware of all this too, but he really needs to watch his six. The same rationale could be used for a staged assassination event if these guys can get close enough to him to pull it off, and then the velvet gloves would REALLY come off!

          • Disaffected says:

            Nice article on the history of false flag events down through history for those who might still be reticent about considering whether their government or forces influencing it are truly evil:

            http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2015/11/the-first-question-to-ask-after-any-terror-attack-was-it-a-false-flag.html

            Turns out, staged false flag events aren’t even rare historically. In fact they’re pretty much the norm when it comes to imperialist warfare, although credit where credit is due, the US, with a fully complicit media, has raised the strategy to an art form in the years since 9-11.

  4. kulturcritic says:

    Your remarks maybe more truth than theory… DA.

    • Disaffected says:

      It could also be a bit of strategic jiu-jitsu to force Putin to play ball with the US in “fighting” ISIS in Syria and elsewhere on the US’s terms. There’s no doubt whatsoever that events over the course of the past two years have seriously strained the US shadow government relationship with Russia, and I believe there’s a full court press on now to discredit Putin by whatever means necessary. The calculation here would be something along the lines of if the people behind such an event like this were ever to be revealed and Putin was subsequently revealed to have known all along and done nothing, the Russian people would be outraged and likely to remove him. I’m not sure that calculation’s correct, but then again US shadow government calculations have been completely wrong at every step of the way so far. And to think, these are our alleged “best and brightest!”

    • Disaffected says:

      The noose continues to tighten:

      http://www.cnn.com/2015/11/24/middleeast/warplane-crashes-near-syria-turkey-border/

      Syria’s looking more and more like the cradle of WWIII.

  5. sosebee2 says:

    Great Post! I agreed with it entirely.

  6. JohnT says:

    Angela,

    A “conversation on foreign policy” among the working class will get you labeled “weird,” “negative,” or worse in exceptionalstan America.

    I work in vocational education, presumably there are co-workers there that read more than their cereal boxes.

    You wouldn’t know it.

    Guns, fashion, sports, celebrity gossip….oh ya, they are down with that.

    Thanks for your reflections on life in America, hope it is read far and wide.

    • Disaffected says:

      US foreign policy discussions among the masses here usually go something like this:

      Those people – bad!
      Us – good!
      We bomb and kill them!
      Football!
      More beer and pizza please!

      And of course the young can’t even be bothered with that, as they stare blankly at their smart phones with only their thumbs a blur of activity.

  7. the Heretick says:

    Prepare yourself for the rankest sort of heresy.

    When the US was founded we were ruled by a bunch of (mainly) British aristocrats who set up the same class system already in place in Europe. Do a bit of reading about early voting laws and you will discover that most of the country was disenfranchised.

    And don’t just blame the Yanks, the French, the Spanish, the bloody British, everybody was into the action in the western hemisphere, as well as the east. It’s amazing the way the Europeans get a pass on colonialism.

    We have an amazing mythology built up, of which about 90% is not true, and it shows no sign of abating. Sorry, but we are spoiled, spoiled rotten, we like our cocoon, and do not want to think about our fragility. My favorite is a now buried and forgotten story of a transit of the solar system by an unknown object in the mid 90’s. don’t bother looking, I read it in the Times, trust me. Just a wanderer detected way out there meandering about the galaxy. But then there was Scholz’s Star.

    But I digress, this is the way we do business, this is the price others pay for our appetites, and have paid for hundreds of years. Think slavery is gone? Get real, the same motive for obscene profit is still operative today. The plain fact is that the worldwide ruling class has turned the entire planet into their little plantation, using the poor as they will, the poor suffering what they must.

    Of course there are all the usual suspects, but there are underlying causes, science and technology being the main culprits. Story on the news about Prez Carter, has cancer, in his 90’s, doctors are going to cure him, of what? Old age? Nothing against Jimmy, but what? Nobody is supposed to pass on?

    Of course our “intellectual life” is built of lies and half-truths, and it’s hardly confined to the lumpenproletariat, the halls of academia and what passes as enlightened thought is simply a bunch of narcissistic gobbledygook, or is that a “trigger phrase”. No, we substitute sophistry for rigor, we don’t like rigor, too real.

    The human race being led by greedy fools has built a technological monster, fueled by vain ambitions of immortality and the fear of death, which will turn on us and rend us, it must, there has be balance. Just don’t look for it from me.

    Perhaps I am just getting old, but people have grown soft, soft in the head, soft in the body, aggression is a wonderful substitute for hard work, just take what you want, screw the other guy.

    It’s the American way.

    • Disaffected says:

      Hear, hear, for your rank hearsay! Top form HT!

    • Disaffected says:

      Hey! Since you mentioned Jimmy Carter and I’ve got nothing better to do early on a Friday night, thought I’d pass on this latest ‘Crowes video that takes me back to the day. I’ve always admired Duritz and the Crowes for capturing the American underclass zeitgeist. Yeah, he’s a drug-addicted buffoon at heart, whose only redeeming attribute is bloviating self-indulgence, but then again, aren’t we all? And at least he’s actually good at it.

  8. the Heretick says:

    Patrick Bateman: I live in the American Gardens Building on W. 81st Street on the 11th floor. My name is Patrick Bateman. I’m 27 years old. I believe in taking care of myself and a balanced diet and rigorous exercise routine. In the morning if my face is a little puffy I’ll put on an ice pack while doing stomach crunches. I can do 1000 now. After I remove the ice pack I use a deep pore cleanser lotion. In the shower I use a water activated gel cleanser, then a honey almond body scrub, and on the face an exfoliating gel scrub. Then I apply an herb-mint facial mask which I leave on for 10 minutes while I prepare the rest of my routine. I always use an after shave lotion with little or no alcohol, because alcohol dries your face out and makes you look older. Then moisturizer, then an anti-aging eye balm followed by a final moisturizing protective lotion.

    Patrick Bateman: I have all the characteristics of a human being: blood, flesh, skin, hair; but not a single, clear, identifiable emotion, except for greed and disgust. Something horrible is happening inside of me and I don’t know why. My nightly bloodlust has overflown into my days. I feel lethal, on the verge of frenzy. I think my mask of sanity is about to slip.

    Patrick Bateman: There is an idea of a Patrick Bateman; some kind of abstraction. But there is no real me: only an entity, something illusory. And though I can hide my cold gaze, and you can shake my hand and feel flesh gripping yours and maybe you can even sense our lifestyles are probably comparable… I simply am not there.

    • Disaffected says:

      American Psycho, the ultimate virtual human. I know at least one guy personally who worships that movie and imagines himself to actually be Patrick Bateman, but I’m positive there are many, many more than that. That’s what made the movie so immensely popular. It was a vicarious thrill for so many who secretly worshiped that lifestyle but dared not admit it.

      • the Heretick says:

        Good art takes the general zeitgeist and focuses it into one character or situation. Bateman, or the Judge from Blood Meridian, are the personification of what lurks below the surface of many people, of course not as extreme, but still a measure of the Zeitgeist.

        The American people have run out of excuses, the Iraq revelations, the Vietnam experience, the widespread knowledge of the dirty works of Operation Ajax, etc. etc.
        It comes to a point where the guilt can no longer be denied, and you must accept responsibility and own the fact that Americans are simply not nice people.

        This goes across the board from the bankstas to the gangstas, and all in between who don’t speak up in “polite” company, who don’t want an argument and shun those who rock the boat. The formerly middle class is guilty, the right is guilty, as is the supposed left. Sure, the “caring” people too.

        Actually heard a supposed sad story on NPR about a poor Brazilian woman who wasn’t going to be able to come to the States to study for her Masters, so sad, really ripped my heart out; all about the drop of Brazilian currency, and her beau having to take a jet airliner to visit her from Miami where he had gone to “work”, job unspecified. Probably not picking up the garbage, and yes, I was a garbageman for a bit, somebody has to do it. Pathetic, what passes for commentary among the enlightened classes.

        Cry me a f–ing river, and run it straight thru the nearest favela.

        It’s a great big free for all, human life goes to the highest bidder, we all know it, just no one will admit. The mass media wants Clinton, and anybody but Trump, Rubio probably, because the dirty secret is these pawns of the ruling class will continue to foment these proxy wars in order to continue to line the pockets of the wealthy. And definitely sink Sanders, that’s the ticket, what “they” want.

        Like I said, no excuses, just own up to it, at least be honest about it.

        • Disaffected says:

          Great observations. I used to comment a long, long time ago on The Dredd Blog, authored by some guy who was into the Judge Dredd thing (never did figure what that was about, but I think he worked for NASA). He was a conventional “doomer” in most respects, except for the small fact that he also believed that green technology could/would(?) save us, so I had to part ways with him after that. I like my doomerism straight up with no ice, thank you very much. But he’s still plugging away at it last time I checked.

          A friend of mine at work who also knows I’m a doomer asked out of the blue the other day about what I thought of the current political circus, probably since I used to get quite vitriolic about it all back when I first started back in 2006 or so. He was pretty let down when I told him that American politics wasn’t really worth the mental effort to think about any more for me, as both parties march in lockstep on all the big things and none of the little things actually matter. Just as a general handicapping exercise and because I like to theorize about what is actually going on vs. what we’re told is going on I told him I think the big money is backing multiple candidates on the R side, with the apparently well-conceived hope that they will all self destruct in the primaries, thus clearing the way for Queen Hillary,who has clearly been anointed to do their bidding, to run against whatever a limp-dick candidate that remains standing in the general. But that’s just my theory, and I don’t much care if I’m right. Whether it’s Hillary, the Donald, Jeb, or Marco Polo, nothing’s going to change, that’s the one thing that’s for sure!

          As for Americans in general, I think the fact that the good Dr Hunter Thompson finally gave up and committed suicide (Now, over ten years ago already, and with a shotgun at that!) says it all. I imagine he would have summed us up something like this: We’re a depraved, psychotic, sub-species all our own. We’re evolution’s wrong turn down a dead-end alley on the wrong side of town. A congenitally damned breed of demonic, narcissistic, sociopathic mutants bred from birth to proclaim our superiority over god, his creation, and one another in any order we please; we’d all be rightly condemned to hell for our sins, except for the fact that we’ve already bought the place on easy credit and converted it into upscale condos that no one can actually afford to live in. Nonplussed, we plan to burn the place down and collect on the insurance anyway.

          Keep plugging HT!

          DA

          • Malthus says:

            Nope Hunter killed himself with a 44 magnum. It was Hemingway that used a shotgun.

            • Malthus says:

              Correction it was a 45 at least that what the majority of sites say when googled. I talked with a mutual friend who went to Hunters house with the Sheriff and he told me the weapon was a 44 magnum. There is a difference but not much. What is weird is there are so many sites that talk of murder. That doesn’t even make sense. His son Juan and his son were in the basement at the time. That is the same basement Johnny Depp stayed for a month studying Hunter for the part in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. A side note was they became really good friends and Depp paid 3 million for the funeral which basically was a high tower constructed to shoot Hunters ashes over his property.

              • Disaffected says:

                I was one of the few who loved the Fear and Loathing movie. Even bought the DVD! Gary Busey’s small part as the fat-assed cop, Ellen Barkin’s scene as the traumatized waitress, and Tobey Maguire as the hitchhiker were all especially memorable. I never would have pictured Depp in that role before I saw it, but he was simply magnificent. Likewise Benicio Del Toro.

                But it takes a uniquely cynical disposition to even comprehend – never mind actually appreciate – Thompson’s work, and as my screen name suggests, I’ve always been exactly the kind of person he was writing for.

            • Disaffected says:

              Sounds like another Thompson fan out there! Yeah, I couldn’t remember exactly what he used at the time, but I do remember he’d said beforehand that that was the way it was likely to go if he ever got to the point where life was not worth living anymore. I feel his pain often myself, but I think there might be less messy ways to do it than with a firearm.

              • Malthus says:

                Oh hunter and I had our disagreements casual after a few drinks in J bar usually about Aspen and the direction it was going. And Del Toro was way off on his character that went with him on that adventure the real guys name was Oscar Acosta and he was a friend of mine. If you want to know more about him he wrote a book called Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo. It is not in print anymore. But do yourself a favor and track it down. Hunter told me he was snuffed in Mexico. His words. Anyway the rat basterd could write. RB was a name Hunter called everyone occasionly.

                • Disaffected says:

                  Doesn’t surprise me about Acosta, since what we saw in the movie in print was largely a figment of Thompson’s vivid imagination. I’d love to read any personal anecdotes you might have about Thompson sometime if you’d like to share. Get with Sandy and he can pass on my email address. My impression from what I’ve read was that Thompson was deeply depressed at the end with the fact that politics and life had largely passed him by. Quite understandable, since all of his existential foes had largely passed on and given way to new horrors that dwarfed all the ones he had spent his life warning us about, while he himself was largely turned into a cartoon caricature of a drug and alcohol fueled crazy man/genius, much of which was, to be fair, largely self-induced.

                  Barack Obama has already completely eclipsed the Bush/Cheney team that so many of us naive liberals spent eight long years decrying as the end of the world, and no doubt Hillary (or whoever) and whatever completely corrupt administration she puts together will do the same. Meanwhile, us common Americans, enrapt by the 24/7 media blitz, are simply too overwhelmed, too stupid, and/or too apathetic to even begin to know what to make of it all. Thompson could have had a lot of biting commentary to add to all that, but he chose not to. Without knowing his personal circumstances in detail I’m reluctant to judge, but it sounds to me as if he was more than a little ashamed at the end of the fact that he chose to embrace the trappings of success, rather than continue to bite the hand that feeds.

                  In the end, almost all of us end up selling out in some ways either big or small. It’s the very nature of the capitalist beast we’ve embraced. We’re so conditioned to resist the evils that confront us obviously and directly, that we never even suspect the more subtle evils that entice us every day.

                  • Malthus says:

                    Hunter was basically physically falling apart. I do not doubt that he was deeply depressed also. The last I saw him was maybe three months before he took his life and he looked like hell. I almost didn’t recognize him. If I recall I have been told he made some comments about having lived 10 years past his time. Another really good writer that was Peggy Clifford who actually took Hunter in when he first showed up in Aspen escaping the hit that the Hell’s Angeles had put out on him. Peggy wrote several books about that period in Aspen and I think the main one was called To Aspen and Back, also one called A love letter to Aspen. She was a reporter for the Aspen times. She saw the handwriting on the wall as far as Aspens future. Good reads also and in one of them Hunter wrote the intro to. I think she is or was a editor for a newspaper in one of the southern California surf towns now.

                    • Disaffected says:

                      God stuff! Sad to hear Thompson had to go out that way, but I imagine all that booze finally began to take its toll.

  9. Angela B. says:

    Hi DA, yes, I am the author. My main complain is people’s reluctance to think independently and take interest in other cultures. There is world out there, which many Americans refuse to see, instead they prefer to watch sports and drink beer. So, most conversations stay at that level. But, obviously, there are people like you and others on this blog – intelligent and open-minded, and in you – there is hope!

    • Disaffected says:

      Thanks Angela. And I guess in Americans defense, we are geographically and culturally isolated, not to mention thoroughly propagandized. Not that that’s any excuse. And the sports metaphors are exactly that: metaphors and generalizations about American behavior. We have lots of very good people here in the US, but of course that’s not enough, is it? As the old truism goes, all that’s needed for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing.

  10. drciber says:

    It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.

    Mark Twain

    It often provkes regret when we find out that something we thought -or believed in, which is the same thing- is no more substantial than the ash on the end of a cigarette. If you live long enough, and your experience is anything like mine,
    You will find that literally everything you thought you knew, everything you ever accepted as settled and immutable, sooner or later falls into that same category. Far from being depressing, it’s actually quite liberating. One can finally stop insisting that things ought to be different from whatever way they are.

    Let go or be dragged. To desire (anything) is to suffer.

    • Disaffected says:

      Just want to acknowledge this post and agree with it. One, Twain was a genius and our greatest American writer; and two, I totally agree with your sentiment thereafter.

      I think most of us fifty(fourty?)-plussers would at this point be best advised to just let go of it all and accept that whatever’s coming we’re pretty much powerless to stop it. I’m not sure the youngsters have much say in it either, but it’s going to be their world to inhabit either way. Kind of reminds me of the Johnstown Flood story again.

  11. troutsky says:

    Or: don’t believe everything you think! Beyond the realm of propaganda, Angela, or “manufactured consent” ,is the more performative problematic known as ideology. Mark Fisher sees Americans in particular, buried in “ideological rubble”, their markers and symbols and significant signifiers so confused and incoherent that Ben Carson makes sense! Also, I am of the generation that spent time under our school desks during the Cuban missle crisis, waiting for the flash and atomic wind from a Russian strike. Thank God it never happened, as Kurt Vonnegut would say.

    DA, thanks for remembering Hunter Thompson and while we’re at it, Fred Hampton Dec 4 1969.

    • Disaffected says:

      I see Ben Carson’s getting “microscoped” this morning, so his five minutes of fame atop the R Prez field seem to be numbered. That’s what seems to be Trump’s main attraction. He’s embraces the dirt they dig up on him, and is thus immunized (among his followers at least) from it. Personally, I think he epitomizes the ideal American politician. A larger than life blustering idiot who mouths political catch phrases at will and NEVER, NEVER, BUT NEVER lets silly little things like facts get in the way of a good demagoguery filled rant.

    • Disaffected says:

      Also, I am of the generation that spent time under our school desks during the Cuban missle crisis, waiting for the flash and atomic wind from a Russian strike. Thank God it never happened, as Kurt Vonnegut would say.

      I am too. It’s amazing to know, now that we know “the rest of the story,” that that whole paranoia filled era was largely self-inflicted. The supposed Soviet missile gap never actually existed and, if anything, the Soviets were the actual peace keepers of the era. Then, as now, it was radical forces within the US government itself that perpetuated the terror that enslaves us all. And why not? The USSR was an authoritarian state that still dealt with internal dissent the old fashioned way – they crushed it. It was only here in the US – the land of the free and the home of the brave – that such radical measures had to be adopted. Make no mistake about it, US leadership is and has always been every bit as despotic as any other two bit dictatorship out there, it’s just that they’ve chosen to take it to a higher level in order to enable our hallowed “free markets” to encourage us consumer slaves to do their bidding and to happily transfer what little wealth we thereby accumulate to them. Credit where credit is due, it’s been a pretty damn good plan thus far too!

    • Disaffected says:

      By the way, I Googled Fred Hampton and learned of his story. I was only 12 at the time of his death, but I’m still sorry that I wasn’t more politically aware at the time. As I think back on those times, we were all just SO politically repressed in middle-America. No excuses, but no apologies either. We were what we were. This while I watch a typical 60 Minutes hysteria piece on Bradley/Chelsea Manning. We are a country of individuals who have truly gone off the rails!

  12. Disaffected says:

    Anybody ever wonder how these so-called “terrorist attacks” can be so well-coordinated, large scaled, and devastating, and yet so easily solved so shortly thereafter? Shouldn’t they be a little easier to prevent if the players and networks are so easily figured out. I’m mean really, it’s almost like they were inside jobs right from the start!

    http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/11/16/456181539/paris-attacks-live-updates-french-authorities-identify-mastermind

    On the other hand, it’s heart warming to know that the NFL is expressing solidarity with the victims, presumably by playing their games as normal and having moments of silence before their “Military Appreciation Month” games all November long. Not to leave any marketing opportunity unexplored, I’m sure a colored ribbon of some sort will be forthcoming too.

  13. drciber says:

    Yeah, the attacks get “solved” much like the crimes do on shows like “Criminal Minds”: The main characters sitting around in a circle and leaping to completely inexplicable conclusions (at least based on what has gone on before in the script up to that point) about this or that bad guy’s actions and/or motivations, and voila!, turns out they guessed right! There’s no way they could possibly be “right” without knowing what the script says beforehand. Remind you of anything? That show is apparently fairly popular? (I don’t know for sure, I don’t live in or visit the US anymore), but having subjected myself to a few episodes via our internet/TV/phone service, it seems to me to be down there with the most poorly written slop I’ve ever come across. So, do the viewers that keep it on the air not notice the gaping holes in the narrative? Are they the same people that don’t notice the gaping holes in official narratives of the events of our time (purely rhetorical questions)? Do the officials writing up the press releases even notice?? Like the “Emperors New Clothes” do they believe their own bullshit and think everyone else does too?

    I find that in my life the best preparation for living in the 21st century I ever received were the few bad acid trips -most were not bad- I had back in ’69-’70.

    • kulturcritic says:

      DA, you’re not a conspiracy theorist, are you now?  But, of course, these are not theories but alternative views of the “””Facts”””.  Yuk yuk!

      • Disaffected says:

        They ran me off of Naked Capitalism because of that, but that’s fine with me. In fact, it’s ALL conspiracy theory, even if you buy into the official story. Trouble is, THEIR conspiracy theory is even more far fetched than the unofficial theories, postulating that a handful of disaffected youth of modest means could so easily pull one over on the largest and most comprehensive security apparatus ever assembled, and then – poof! – just like that, the whole mystery can be wrapped up and the conspirators identified, killed or captured just few days later. All that’s left is to declare war on someplace that the officials wanted to declare war on anyway but couldn’t for lack of a casus belli, and there you go. You’d have to be a sap to believe anything that comes from official western sources anymore. it’s ALL LIES!

        • Disaffected says:

          And Kunstler’s threatening to run off a commenter going by bobinboiseid today for the same thing. So much for “progressive thinking.” Jim has gradually turned into an establishment tool as he gained popularity. I just look at the evidence, wherever it leads, and the evidence beginning with 9-11 is that the US shadow government is behind ALL of the current hysteria, although any single incident could of course be an exception to that general rule. But most intelligent people ain’t noticing too damn many exceptions, especially with these very large, well coordinated attacks that have too many inconvenient truths associated with them.

    • Disaffected says:

      Law and Order in all its various permutations is indeed still popular here in the US and does indeed feed the meme that our law enforcement does no wrong. I don’t watch it either. Americans are way beyond gullible these days. We are in fact watching the unfolding of the 21st century Nazi Empire right before our eyes. Hitler would have been proud.

  14. drciber says:

    If you’re talking to me, the answer is definitely no, I’m not. At least I don’t consider myself one. I don’t think that’s what’s going on for the most part, but not for lack of tryin’ on the part of the would be conspirators.

    What’s his name? Greer, the Archdruid guy. I find him hard to read, maddeningly pedantic, but that doesn’t stop him from having some really good observations every now & then. One of his better ones, paraphrasing freely: don’t go around attributing stuff to nefarious deep-state conspiracies that is just as easily explained by simple incompetence.

    • Disaffected says:

      That’s always the party line. Trouble is, these things are NOT as easily explained by random or simple incompetence. And the deep state is not asking you to believe that either. They’re asking you to believe that anonymous “terrorists,” who’s names will only be known to you after the fact and the deep state themselves inform you of their identity, are capable of foiling the deep states security apparatus seemingly at will, but then, miraculously, the deep state is able to crack their plot almost instantaneously afterward and settle scores. Of course the Deep State will then have to take further draconian security measures, which will last into perpetuity, because of the event itself, but that’s a price that every “freedom loving patriot” out there should be willing to pay, right? WRONG!!!

      And by the way, Greer is currently posting an extended online novella that would have you believe post-collapse life is going to be something akin to Mayberry, RFD revisited. Yeah, right!

      But the key is 9-11. The material, photo, and forensic evidence is all in now and is absolutely conclusive. The towers (there were THREE of them by the way, one of which was not even hit by an airplane, but collapsed in the exact same manner as the other two) were brought down by controlled demolition. And once you accept that (although the evidence mounts from there), all the rest just naturally follows. And the best part is, the plotters knew that this is how it would all play out. They knew that Americans were such saps for the whole American Exceptionalism meme that they’d never believe that someone would do it from the inside.

      • kulturcritic says:

        Sometimes, DA… you are clearly perfect…. and perfectly clear!!  Love U

      • drciber says:

        Well, pardon me DA, but I think incompetence does explain it. But it’s not just the creeps pulling the levers behind the green curtain. The Deep State and all power brokers everywhere are just human beings (power mad human beings, I grant you) drawn from a general population that for centuries has been proving itself collectively and individually to be far less clever than it thinks it is, with a nasty addiction to violence as a means of resolving disagreements. Are we any more advanced than chickens for chrissakes? We gotta have a pecking order? Everywhere on the planet. It’s a bad habit we can’t seem to break even in the face of multiple prior examples of failed hierarchical civilizations and rapidly worsening climate / environmental catastrophes provoked by us that are likely to kill us all and 90%+ of everything else in a matter of decades. Where the “Deep State” comes in is in trying to keep us distracted (so far it’s working on most everybody) with all its chickenshit & violence, so here we sit squabbling over non-negotiable lifestyles, politics, religions, what to do with the refugees, who gets the oil, etc., anything but deal with the really tough nuts to crack. If that isn’t incompetence then it’s even worse, but I don’t have a name for it. Maybe we could call it Easter Island Syndrome.

        • Disaffected says:

          Organized “conspiracies” don’t preempt incompetence, malfeasance, greed, stupidity, or any other human foible. They ride on top of all those traits and amplify them. What dismissing such organized efforts out of hand does is give those who behind them a free ride under the guise that “they’re impossible to pull off,” or “they’re more easily explained by sheer incompetence.” That latter statement might be true in many cases, but when it’s wrong, it’s still just just wrong. How would you feel if for example a homicide detective were to tell you that in response to a murder investigation of a close friend or loved one? That’s essentially what the Feds did with 9-11 and guess what, it worked so well they’re doing it with everything now! I see this morning that France now considers itself at war with ISIS, a wholly owned US shadow government construction, and has launched airstrikes (the typical western chicken shit way out) on Syria, no doubt with resounding public approval. Job well done false flag puppeteers! You know, it’s not enough to simply watch events unfold and say oh my, my. You have to actually keep score and put two and two together occasionally. It’s not like any of this is even hard anymore, even given that the fact that modern mass media is extremely persuasive.

      • Colin says:

        If they were having drills the same day as the attack (which I believe they were) it’s a dead giveaway someone knew.

        Happens numerous times and was even mentioned in the latest Batman movie (i.e. “We’ll go after Bane underground but people won’t be freaked because well just say it’s a drill” or something)

        • Disaffected says:

          Always amazes me that Americans and Europeans, who are exposed to every manner of TV and movie spy novel plot twist complexity imaginable almost daily, can’t imagine the logistics of how easy it would be to carry out one of these events. My retort, especially in the case of these big, intricately coordinated, blockbuster attacks like 9-11 and Paris, is who do you think it’s more likely is responsible? A small, underground band of disaffected 3rd world jihadis living in a foreign country (even accepting that they might have disaffected locals helping them too), or a well-organized false-flag conspiracy operation, using the same “sleeper-cell” concepts they always attribute to jihadis (no coincidence there, just truth in advertising)? Ask yourself, who has the resources and the expertise to pull such events off, and perhaps more importantly, who benefits in the aftermath? But once again, Dmitry Orlov covered all this better than I in a recent post.

          http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2015/11/a-most-convenient-massacre.html#more

          • Colin says:

            You are assuming these groups are different to begin with. They are all linked behind the scenes. Think abou who’s fleeing Syria – those who fought Assad are certainly among the refugees no? We know the Islamic State openly admits to recruiting the refugees and migrants out of the camps as well as to sending fake refugees into Europe. And who are those people and how did they get their weapons? US, UK, Israel, Turkey and Saudi Arabia that’s how. Now they are recruiting out of Europe. People don’t realize the connivery and bizarre allegiances behind the scenes. Iraq released video images of UK military helicopter air dropping supplies into known ISIS territory and they were just like “oops! Yeah that was meant for someone else…”. France gets attacked on its own soil and declares martial law but imeadiately says it’s beginning new military ops in Syria. Like how is that going to solve anything if they are already in your borders and claimed ostensibly that the motivation for their attacks was European military action in Syria (does that make any sense? Didn’t these same people ask for the weapons the west have them?). This is not just tail-wagging-the-dog stuff but dog-chasing-it’s-tail-while-tail-wags-dog. Like a third order exponential differential equation with no possible equilibrium…

  15. Disaffected says:

    Fortunately for us all, Dmitry Orlov explains it all MUCH better than I:

    http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2015/11/a-most-convenient-massacre.html#more

  16. Disaffected says:

    I can’t resist. From Dmitry at the link above:

    Also, you probably believe that the terrorist attacks in Paris were the genuine article—nobody knew it would happen, and it couldn’t have been stopped, because these terrorists are just too clever for the ubiquitous state surveillance to detect. Don’t feel bad about that either; you are just believing what you are told to believe. You probably also believe that jet fuel can melt steel girders and that skyscrapers collapse into their own footprints (whether they’ve been hit by airplanes or not). You can certainly believe whatever you like, but here are a couple of easy-to-understand tips on telling what’s real from what’s fake:

    1. If it’s fake, the perpetrators are known immediately (and sometimes beforehand). If it’s real, then the truth is uncovered as a result of a thorough investigation. So, for instance, on 9/11 the guilty party were a bunch of Saudis armed with box cutters (some of whom are, paradoxically, still alive). And in Paris we knew right away that this was done by ISIS—even before we knew who the perpetrators were. And when that Malaysian jet got shot down over Ukraine, we knew right away that it was the Russians’ fault (never mind that on that day the Ukrainians deployed an air defense system, and also scrambled a couple of jets armed with air-to-air missiles— against an enemy that doesn’t have an air force). Note, however, how we still don’t know what happened with the Russian jet over Sinai. That case is still under investigation—as it should be. If it’s real, officials stall for time and urge caution while scrambling to find out what happened. When it’s fake, the officials are ready to go with the Big Lie, and then do everything they can to make it stick, suppressing what shreds of evidence can be independently gathered.

    2. If it’s fake, than you should also expect cute little touches: designer logos for publicity campaigns ready to launch at a moment’s notice, be it “Je suis Charlie” or that cute little Eiffel Tower inscribed in a peace symbol. There weren’t any props to go with the Russian jet disaster—unless you count that tasteful Charlie Hebdo cartoon of a jihadi rocket having anal sex with an airliner. There might also be a few traditional titbits designed to feed a media frenzy, such as a fake passport found lying next to one of the perpetrators—because when terrorists go on suicide missions they always take their fake passports with them. The people who are charged with designing these events lack imagination and usually just go with whatever worked before.

  17. Disaffected says:

    A little observational humor, which I think describes and explains the unquestioning western frame of mind about as well as anything:

    I work at a large, well-funded, quasi governmental scientific institution here in the US. It’s split about evenly between lowly administrative staff members like me and real honest to goodness scientific egg-head types. The egg-heads are also split pretty evenly between the uber egg-head research types, and the more analytical and no-nonsense engineering types (the scientists dream the shit up and the engineers make it happen). Regardless, just about everyone up here is a “true believer in the cause” when it comes to all things US related. We’re the biggest baddest motherfuckers that ever drew breath, God and Jesus are on our side, Red, White, and Blue forever and ever Amen, and all the rest of that silly shit. Oh yeah, I’m RETIRED US military too by the way, and even I am smart enough to see through all that shit.

    Anyway, I walk to work quite regularly when the weather’s bad, as it is up here quite regularly, and my mind being as warped as it clearly is, I’ve already identified a little pet peeve of mind that I think deserves some comment. This being a fine, upstanding, VERY politically correct and proper institution, all of the streets and pedestrian crossings are EXCEEDINGLY well marked and enforced, right down to the push button crossing indicators on ALL of the pedestrian crossings. And I mean EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM too! Now me being almost 60 and raised in a time when it wasn’t unthinkable to use your brain and apply a little common sense to your day to day, and after noticing the robot/zombie like behavior of other people when they’re out walking, have made it a personal point of mine to NEVER use the crossing buttons (with one or two exceptions in high traffic areas that I don’t usually frequent), and instead simply do what I’ve always done, which is to stop, look, and proceed when it’s clear to do so.

    Needless to say, I receive aghast(!!) looks all the time and have even been “warned” by several would be authoritarian types about my behavior, which I promptly ignore. And in turn I observe other groups of seemingly very smart people standing in herds like sheep or cattle waiting for a walk signal during off hours when there’s no traffic anywhere in sight. I’ve been tempted to write this all up and suggest a serious academic study by one of the many PhD sociologists we no doubt have on staff up here so that I TOO might finally get published. But what it says to me loud and clear is that one should never discount the value, impact, and collective hold of normative behavior in cultures such as the US, which now COMPLETELY AND WITHOUT QUESTION WORSHIPS hierarchical based authority in ALL of its manifestations. And THAT, in short, is why the term “conspiracy theory” gets bandied about so recklessly as a term of derision and scorn these days. The sheep simply can’t bear the cognitive dissonance imparted by the realization that a few of their members have broken away from the pack, and that the only thing preventing them from doing so too is conquering their own fears.

    • Disaffected says:

      So, just to close the loop on this subject, and then I’ll shut up. Whenever I get labeled with the popular rejoinder “conspiracy theorist” these days (which falls so effortlessly off the tongues of the stiff shirts that purportedly know better (Lambert Strether and his mindless clones over at Naked Capitalism (“Fearless Commentary,” INDEED!), or Jim Kunstler and his dysfunctional crew of racists, lunatics, and assorted ne’er do wells over at Clusterfuck Nation), I simply reply that no, I’m just a person of rather modest means and abilities who still has a functioning brain and remains unafraid to actually use it and – stay with me here, this is the difficult part – follow the logical conclusions it provides WHEREVER THEY MIGHT LEAD ME. OK, I’m done now. I’ll shut up now until next week / next post.

      • Ron McCafferty says:

        Uh, DA it’s way past next week……just sayin’.

        • Disaffected says:

          Sorry Ron. I thought you all could use a rest.

          How about the San Bernardino shoot ’em up? The PTB have now successfully advanced the meme that ISIS is attacking us right here in the proverbial “Homeland.” Might be time to be very, very afraid again… of our government, which proposes to protect us all from this self-induced madness. At the very least it will ramp up the electioneering rhetoric another several notches, but I’m sure there will be more Patriot Act inspired bullshit to go along with it as well, as the Congress critters claw each others’ eyes out to attain the title of Super Patriot. Frying pan into the fire and all that…

  18. ErtyerePetyere says:

    USSR United StateS of amerRica Aka UnitedSovietrussiA State Capitalism VS Market Capitalizm -Same Shit-

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