Ship Of Fools: A New Hermeneutic

Корабль дураков

[I just could not help myself – kC]

There was in Greek mythology a very ancient divinity, traced back as far as Egypt, called Hermes, “messenger of the gods.” He was to interpret or translate the messages of gods into human words.  He is also credited with the origin of alphabetic writing, cunning, deceit, and fraud.  And there you have it… (the curriculum)!


Of course, messages from the gods were predominantly prescriptions on how to live (rituals, sacrifices) or proscriptions (codes of conduct, etc).  After all, that was the principal role of the the World Religions as they emerged out of the early civilizations of the Ancient Near East.  But the mouths of the gods were not the only place where such pronouncements originated, at least not for long. The earliest kings of the lands, considered divine incarnations themselves, also assumed the divine right to establish and maintain social order in the emerging city-states.  Laws of the land were established, much like Hermes articulated the divine law, through the written word.  It was more than likely that it was through the king that Hermes ‘spoke.’

So the interpretation of religious scripture, along with the proper application (interpretation) of legal codes (texts) became an ongoing concern for theologians and jurists (lawyers and justices) alike.  Thus their concern gave way to the discipline of hermeneutics — theological and legal interpretations of divine or human law, respectively.  And, of course, this is how the initial cunning, deceit and fraud of Hermes just kept on giving, and still gives today, more than ever.

And so, from Feuerbach, Schleiermacher, Dilthey, Bultmann, H.G. Gadamer through Heidegger, we see the unfolding development of the problem of meaning – of the interpretation of religious, moral, social, and legal codes.  In other words, we were forewarned that such proscriptions, prescriptions, rights and responsibilities of the citizenry were, and always will be, OPEN TO INTERPRETATION by the experts or those filling the seats of power.  Thus do we find ourselves amidst and amok in our current dilemma.  The very definitions that inform the laws of the land, and in this case, the definition of the words ‘terrorist,’ ‘spy’, ‘traitor’ are now haunting reminders of this hermeneutic appeal.  Some of the edges are being blurred, stretched really beyond recognition (while my guitar gently weeps) — the hermeneutical advantage being driven by the law-makers and other self-anointed experts.

We can of course begin with the issue of ‘espionage’ and Obama’s remarkably free-style application of the ‘legal’ definition to include government or corporate whistle-blowers who choose to disclose issues that are morally or legally questionable, subject to informed debate and consent of the governed in light of the original conditions of the social contract.  But, we already know that contracts (social or otherwise) are made to protect one party – the party that drew up the contract – and made to be broken in order to insure such protection is enforced or executed.  So, I am afraid the Bradley Manning syndrome may continue unabated for the rest of our nation’s life.  But, if you look at our militaristic response to the Occupy Wall Street movement a couple of years back, you will see the same, self-styled hermeneutic of events as they unfolded.  There was no respect for freedom of assembly, association, or speech; the people on the streets were treated like ‘terrorists’ engaged in acts of terror.  Now, the powers-that-be did not of course speak that way, but it is obvious from their collusion and their militaristic behavior that the cards are being reshuffled in a different direction and to their advantage.  They have already gone so far as to inappropriately label whistleblowers as spies and traitors, and they have determined that terrorism is a rampant enough problem in our world, such that the wholesale collection of electronic telephonic, networking, and postal data is a reasonable measure consistent with their obligations to protect the nation, and that it should not to be confused with illegal wiretapping, monitoring, or censorship.  It is truly revealing but not surprising that they would label Mr Snowden a spy, when all he did was to disclose the illegal spying of the US administration and their security agencies on American citizens.

Now we have the local Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation director warning a group of county residents that unfounded complaints about water quality could be considered “terrorism.”

You need to make sure that when you make water quality complaints you have a basis, because federally, if there’s no water quality issues, that can be considered under Homeland Security an act of terrorism.

So there you have it folks, another hermeneutic reassessment of the law of the land.  But, as farcical as this appears on the face of it; hold your laughter folks and hold on to your hats.  It’s only just begun.  The band is heating up in the back room and the fat lady is beginning to sing.  We will never, ever have a mass demonstration again in the Land of Washington, Franklin, Lincoln and Jefferson.  We can never put the number of bodies in the streets as they did this week in Brazil.  The powers that be would see this, interpret it, and proclaim it to be an act of TERROR!!

Mark my words, folks.  Any congregation of people with the appearance of raising complaints, discussing relevant political issues, or, god-forbid, challenging the official narrative, automatically has the “signature” of a terrorist plot or engagement.  Listen clearly, Chris Hedges.  They will not allow you much more rope in this game of chicken.  They have already laid the ground-work, and executed the strategy nearly flawlessly in Pakistan and other parts of the developing world.  It is only a matter of time before they apply the same heuristic, and the same principles of interpretation (hermeneutic) here in the HomeLand!

We are all potential terrorists under the new hermeneutic, articulated so clearly just this week by the avenger-in-chief, (Hermes) Obama, messenger of the One God… MONEY!  Collecting call and online data is legal and protective of the oligarchy’s rights under the terms of the contract.  The release of classified information that identifies illegal actions of empire are acts of treason or acts of terror, pure and simple.  Assembly or association or speech that is inconsistent with the embodiment of the official narrative is terrorism.  This is where we are headed folks.

2013619787365734_20Put a half of million disgruntled citizens on the streets of this country (like they are doing in Brazil) and we will have a new federal prison open for business… the business of incarcerating citizen-terrorists… or we will just ship them off shore to a black-site somewhere for extraordinary rendition; or, perhaps disperse them with a few hundred armed drones.  In any event, we, the government, will rid ourselves of some of those seven billion people that are crowding out the deserving few, the chosen, the owners, as George Carlin liked to say.

No folks, it won’t be long before questioning the authorities either online about public policy, or on the streets of a city near you en masse, will be interpreted as an act of espionage, treason, or terror — aiding and abetting the enemy.  But, you know, Stalin had a much more efficient way of handling such challenges to his control and to his regime; he just sent folks off to gulags in Siberia, starved them to death in the winter, and then blamed it all on mother nature.  I wonder upon what our authorities will blame the silencing of the voices of descent here in the Home (of the brave)… Land (of the free).  I’m certain it’s only a matter of them finding… or rather, articulating, the right hermeneutic!

89 Responses to Ship Of Fools: A New Hermeneutic

  1. James says:

    As the technological state begins collapse participation will become mandatory. You must contribute to the solvency of the complex subsystems. Obamacare is a good start at forced participation. Then you will be required to use electrical service and water from the local utilities or face a levy for using solar or a well. The periphery will be pillaged to maintain the “too big to fail” institutions of this doomed cancerous growth. We’ve saved the banking system and soon the medical system and then…………name your system. You will be financially bled and sacrificed to save things that cannot be saved and if you dare resist you will be deemed unpatriotic and a terrorist. A forced ride to hell brought to you by those whose financial security depends upon your forced participation. Like a starving person, the fat will be consumed first and then the muscle trying to maintain an infrastructure that can no longer be fed. The internal organs will shut down last and all those attached cells that were promised salvation and a return of good times for their sacrifice will die in place within the system. Fortunately consciousness will not be lost, because there never was any.

    • kulturcritic says:

      I think this states our situation fairly accurately, James. Now we just sit and watch as the trap closes.

      • James says:

        Just this day I received a notice in the mail informing dear customers in our area that water rates will be going up 24% over the next two years and sewer rates up 28%. The trap is surely closing. Under such dire circumstances relieving oneself in nature would seem most appropriate except that it’s against the law. I’m currently calculating how much it costs to take a piss in the toilet, something that’s becoming more expensive every day.

    • Some states are already implementing a tax on hybrid cars, cause they are losing the gasoline taxes. Of course there is no talk at all about making the rich pay a bit more of their share, just us proles get to pay and pay.

  2. Hines says:

    Great post, Sandy. Any person or group of people will find it more difficult, if not impossible, to organize mass protests through social media without some sort of interference being run by the US Stasi. In other words, our 1st amendment rights to free speech and assembly can be squashed before we know what hit us. The irony that this is being led, to some extent, by a former constitutional law professor should not be lost on anyone. And still I read or hear everyday from the sheep that this is OK because we are being kept safe. How sad.

    • kulturcritic says:

      Of course, the good professor would be very familiar with the tricks and head fakes he can use when re-interpreting the laws and the contract..

    • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

      It’s not irony, it’s tradition. Only Nixon could go to China. Only a constitutional law professor could shred GWB’s “scrap of paper.” I think that should clear up any lingering questions regarding how and why he got the job.

  3. But, Sandy, here in the Homeland of the “Free” we already have the gulags and slave labor camps, using the Orwell like manes “Private Prisons” or ” Prison for Profit”…wait til the hire Foxconn to run them..oh wait, Foxconn is already building “facilities” in the Homeland. Talk about twisting the social contract…oh wait, its the rulers who write that..never mind

    • kulturcritic says:

      Yes, Marlena… you are not mistaken about the gulags. And the contract was written for their protection. Absolutely… hang in there!

    • Mike Sosebee says:

      It’s not just “for Profit Pirsons”, how about McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Wal-mart who control the legions of impoverished, poorly educated wage slaves who make up more than half of the proletariat?

  4. Malthus says:

    “Homeland”, good grief lets just call it what it really is. The fatherland without the swastikas. By the way anyone that is interested I had a warning from my email site used here of suspicious activity and asked me to change my password. It has begun. Good luck to all here and keep up the good work.

  5. Obama’s “Insider Threat Program” ( is one more indication of the criminalization of dissent in the Land of the Free.

    • kulturcritic says:

      It will only get worse, my friends… BIG BROTHER is real and he is in DC.

      • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

        Big Brother is our protector defending us from the traitor Emmanuel Snowdenstein and the horde of our eternal enemy East Asia. North Atlantia have always been at war with East Asia.

  6. kulturcritic says:

    I believe they are already hacking my site… I am having extreme difficulty getting into my blog. Is anyone else having trouble?

  7. Carol Newquist says:

    Yep, I’m having big problems. I think they have control of my computer with a nasty root kit virus I picked up on June 14th. It’s definitely spying. I located one of the folders it’s running out of and you can see the items it’s searched and dumped in this folder. It’s all my personal stuff…emails, checking account spreadsheet…..even a word document on nuclear power my daughter created two years ago for a school project. I guess because it was nuclear, we’re now considered terrorists. Also, it’s created an internet log file that I cannot open without a program my computer does not have. That’s telling in and of itself. This things goes through its routine right before my eyes and there’s nothing I can do about it. Anti-virus is useless against it. I believe NSA has hired hackers years ago to infect and destroy pc’s with an inundation of hacks and then they collaborated with Google and the like to create the cloud as a secure alternative for people. But it’s not secure. Sure, it’s free from viruses and you don’t have to worry about storage space any longer, but now it’s not your data. It now belongs to them when you use the cloud and they can do with it whatever they damn well please. Another dimension of full-spectrum dominance. We knew it would come to this. The time is upon us. Buckle up, we’re shifting gears.

    • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

      How else will Big Brother know for sure if you like Fruit Loops for breakfast? A dastardly attack by our eternal enemy Eurasia destroyed a convoy of grain ships from our ally East Asia. Effective immediately, food ration coupons are invalid. Citizens will receive a weekly box of groceries on their doorstep. Heroic North Atlantian forces are already wreaking vengeance on Eurasia with whom we have always been at war.

    • Check here for root kit removal tools,
      Though the only sure way to get them all is to format your hard drive and do clean install of the OS and any programs…but only off the installation DVD

      • Carol Newquist says:

        Yep, I researched all of that. The only way to be certain you’re free of it, is to flatten your hard drive and rebuild it fresh, but in the process, you lose all your data you’ve accumulated over the years. Many people are going to throw their hands up and sign themselves over to the cloud because they don’t have to worry about this perpetual nuisance any longer, and as part of that process, make the NSA’s job that much easier since once they do that, the data is, effectively, the security state’s to do with whatever they please.

  8. Carol Newquist says:

    All these years I always considered the Mark of the Beast nonsense just that….nonsense. I guess I shouldn’t have been so dismissive. As metaphor, it looks like it’s going to be spot-on.

  9. Kevin Frost says:

    HI Sandy,
    Nothing unusual here down under. I’ve always had trouble scrolling, takes ages, but I attributed that to my seven year old computer groaning with more recent programs. But otherwise aren’t you in Russia? And a foreign power, as one supposes, is messing with citizens or residents on Russian soil? Where RT is located?

  10. Carol Newquist says:

    I have to say, Erdogan is correct in his assessment. In Brazil and Turkey, and other such countries, you get two choices; a NeoLib puppet, or a puppet military dictatorship. In Arab countries, that military dictatorship can take the form of the Muslim Brotherhood, i.e. Egypt. No nationalism. When push comes to shove, the “leadership” of any country must do the bidding of the global plutocracy. Dyed in the wool Liberals are still falling for this bullshit….even after Egypt. Hell, even the citizens of these countries fall for it. Think of all those people who sacrificed themselves during the Egyptian rebellion only to have the Muslim Brotherhood fill the power vacuum that was created. And don’t think for a second the planners didn’t know that would happen and that they wanted it to happen.

    • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

      Your people, sir, is nothing but a great beast!

      – Alexander Hamilton

      Nothing to see here. Move along. Hermes Erdogan merely delivers the words of Allah.

  11. Carol Newquist says:

    Unfortunately, that ship’s no S.S. Minnow. It’s the Executioner’s vessel, and foolish as it may be, everywhere it docks, it brings massive suffering and death. No port required. It brings its own.

    • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

      Yea though I walk through the valley of irradiated death…

      Our finest minds are perpetually stumped by the question of how to dispose of enriched uranium. It took something less then the finest to figure out an easy and profitable way (depleted uranium munitions and Abrams tank hulls) to dispose of the dregs left over from the process. Perpetual war for a scintillating future.

      • Carol Newquist says:

        Maybe those scintillators can be turned into an app for the iphone. A party favor. “Hey look everyone, I’m radioactive.” Cool!! Don’t laugh. It’s coming. Everything can be commercialized and exploited for profit regardless of where we are curve of this trajectory.

  12. Carol Newquist says:

    Maybe those scintillators can be turned into an app for the iphone. A party favor. “Hey look everyone, I’m radioactive.” Cool!! Don’t laugh. It’s coming. Everything can be commercialized and exploited for profit regardless of where we are curve of this trajectory.

  13. Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

    When things are this bleak, maybe it’s time.

  14. the Heretick says:

    yo, “hermeneutics”? next thing it will be “exegesis”, speak english, willya? but seriously folks, in one of my recent posts, one pretty much ignored, i did attempt to explain the view from the hood, took a couple shots at the privileged upbringing of some of the commentators, i guess i got “lazily antagonistic”, jesus f. christ, like i said, you ain’t seen nothing yet, you should meet some of my friends.

    i can do the high-brow debate stuff, but then i have to work, to think, what good has that done anybody? that’s what got us in this mess in the first place, too much thinking….

    i will try again, there is a pregnant pause upon the streets, obama has fooled his constituency, they are slowly coming to realize that his rhetoric means nothing. it’s really still all about power, about the same thing it’s always been about. anyhow, when the working poor realize they are on the 20/20 plan (to borrow a right wing phrase), which means two, count them, two part time jobs, and a quarter of your income goes for the ACA? they ain’t gonna be happy. the non-working poor? when they actually start locking people up for non-payment of taxes? meaning the required health plan? the govt. sees the problems coming.
    the educated? they can be replaced with imports, just like the ditch diggers.
    it’s all flim-flam, the crackdown is coming, it’s nothing but a fascist state, always has been, should have listened to the reds, should have been taking care of our own, it’s too late now.
    i’ve been thru it, all my friends were hippies when it was cool, then they put on business suits when it was required, now they are sold out, big time.
    you have to have lived on the bottom your whole life to know the rage, you have to have nothing to lose, then you know the rage. i know the rage, but i had the early indoctrination that kept the lid on it, i always had the hope for maybe something better, now i am too old. but the young? the young thugs on the streets? they have the rage, and the supposed left has been fooling themselves for 80 years in this country with their supposed reforms, now we will pay the price.
    Obama is from Chicago, the murder capital of this country, there, LA, other places. our country has bred it’s own virus, as closed systems do. it’s not all about irreality, simulation, and symbols, it’s about the human spirit, the zeitgeist, and we have none.
    all of this is playing out against a backdrop of increasing scarcity. gasoline has been stuck at $4 a gallon for a year, it’s never going back down.
    the poor will be further betrayed.
    the intelligentsia will be betrayed.
    the ruling class only needs a certain amount of stooges.
    the middle class will soon openly revolt.
    and the young people? who can’t pay for college?
    and the people with college degrees who can’t find jobs?
    who have $60,000 in debt and are driving $1,000 beaters?
    and all they can find are unpaid internships, or a $15/hour dead-end job?
    because an Indian will do it for $5?

    it’s too bad , really, but there it is. too many mental games and not enough attention paid to business. i blame the upper class, i blame those who should have known better. i realize some are now trying to make amends, but by now we are well down the road to a police state, and it will not work, which means conflict. this could all be avoided if those elected to govern would govern, would put the people first, but i don’t see it happening. how does it go? cest’ la vie?

    • Disaffected says:

      Actually, all of this could have only been avoided had we rejected industrial capitalism about 160 years or so back. After that, the die was pretty much cast. The rich are merely doing what they do – getting gloriously richer – and the poor are merely doing likewise – getting desperately poorer – at this point. Industrial capitalism – with a huge assist from a one time only historical dispensation of unprecedented amounts of cheap energy from oil – approaching perfection. What’s the problem? Yes indeed, I think that what we might be witnessing now is just the inevitable “playing out of the string.”

  15. Ron McCafferty says:

    One may compare the current monetary system (which is THE ONE god), that is running this whole cluster fuck, to a pride of feeding lions. The toughest ones get to feed first/best meat and the rest get the left overs. But pretty much everyone eats. I think the only difference is a pride works for the future of the pride and not for selfishness. Sometimes it seems to me that we are being pushed in the direction we are headed. So-o-o. Make yourself comfortable and keep all your limbs inside the ride at all times (except on the downhill parts). See y’all at the end of the ride.

    • Disaffected says:

      That said Ron, what do lions do in times in times of drastically diminishing resources? I suspect they act very similarly to the way that we do – irrationally, selfishly, and erratically, although granted, they certainly don’t have the profit motive hanging over their heads as well, now do they?

  16. kulturcritic says:

    And, of course, Russia is fully committed to spying on its citizens as well… while supplying technology support to its USA counterparts!!

    • Kevin Frost says:

      Right. Should have known. I guess I’m not above wishful thinking. But still, what’s it all about? Control, of course. And how is that achieved, or better, how is it sold? Fear. Individuation. The surveilance system only needs to be there, panoptically. Nobody’s got a clue whether anybody’s actually in that central guard tower (watching porn). But somehow I think this worry that were going to get an unfriendly knock on the door is of the order of Orwellian nostalgia. Back in the bad old days of the totalitarian states the authorities took governance seriously. They thought that’s what they were supposed to do so they hired on zillions of public employees to keep a careful watch on things. But now? What are they doing? In America it looks like asset stripping to me. If they wanted to incarcerate people they’d fund it. If they wanted to govern the country they’d back the federal, state, and municipal agencies. That’s not happening. On the contrary. These people think that government just gets in the way, too expensive. I think it’s important to keep the general privatisation agenda clearly in view. The world remains a dangerous place – but not for you. That’s what I think. You’re not in anybody’s way. Carol linked a story about that Rolling Stone reporter who got a three star general in trouble with the WH. Dangerous messing around with sharks. The story from Moscow News cites an opposition politician who was causing trouble. So … .
      Well there’s more to be said, quite a bit. But .. .. fuck this fear stuff, is the gist of what I want to say. The knock on the door situation is .. amiss. Not like that, different this time around. If you’re pissing somebody off they’ll take down your site, but that’s about all. And that’s enough, for their purposes. So you see I still believe in a rational universe; this will no doubt be my undoing. But in the meantime, Carol posted another link (thanks for that) this to a story run by Business Insider treating keywords, the kind the nsa folks like. Now mind you, this is ancient history (when PRISM was young). Keywords: ‘wire transfer, e-cash, Bubbha the love sponge, Digicash, and of course, ‘zip’. Move down a few lines and we come to: Flintlock, cybercash, government, hate, speedbump, iluminati, freedom, cocaine, $. You get the idea. J. Borges would have been proud of these guys. Like they say: ‘can’t make this stuff up’. Fuck em, let’s get back to hermeunutics.

      • Kevin Frost says:

        PS. Now I feel ashamed of myself misspelling hermeneutics like that. Don’t hold it against me. We all make mistakes. Come on.. My machine’s as buggy as a warm evening in July. Guess i’m connected to people on the list, like my dear heart daughter in law the raving Trotskyist. Btw I’m in the market for an armband: the Hammer & Sickle. If something comes up please get in touch: Kevin Frost

  17. Carol Newquist says:

    Shiny, happy people holding hands need only apply. Anyone else, you need not apply; in fact, you will be reported, punished and re-educated.

    “It’s about people’s profiles, their approach to work, how they interact with management. Are they cheery? Are they looking at or The Onion during their lunch break? This is about ‘The Stepford Wives,’” said a second senior Pentagon official, referring to online publications and a 1975 movie about robotically docile housewives. The official said he wanted to remain anonymous to avoid being punished for criticizing the program.

    The emphasis on certain behaviors reminded Greenstein of her employee orientation with the CIA, when she was told to be suspicious of unhappy co-workers.

    “If someone was having a bad day, the message was watch out for them,” she said.

    Out of time? You bet.

  18. Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

    I think the meaning behind this former ‘special relatives’ spook’s words amounts to this, for the production of new episodes of Perpetual War for a Scintillating Future to continue, if casting cannot find any actors willing to accept the role of Resident Evil then the Producer will have to fill the role and let others play the heroes.

    • Carol Newquist says:

      I think I will make the title of my next book, Bear Hunting with Putin. Has a nice ring to it. Pussy Riot can be our tour guides. It will be a tribute to Joe Bageant, may he rest in peace. I don’t really mean the rest in peace part simply because that term is complete bollocks.

  19. FIDO says:

    Obama is the new hitler in shapeshifting form, he can be anything to everyone but keeps his agenda clearly based on Proto Nazi /Orwellian models. His lies and deceit makes republicans look like teenagers learning to ride the family station wagon. Obama is Darth Vader, guys he is the evil doer that bush was so roundly derided for talking about, It is pretty simple to see that the war of all on all is going to take place. Perhaps it will be turned into a made for tv special event….

    • Disaffected says:

      Bush “the Shrub” will eventually be remembered for his retardedness, much like that “dumb cousin” in the family that everyone affectionately derides. Just what his political handlers had in mind all along. And true to form, the dumb bastard continues to play his part to the very end.

      Aww… Ain’t that just adorable?

  20. the Heretick says:

    well, there’s a couple of ways to go with this one.

    or, you could go this way.

  21. the Heretick says:

    “the hermeneutical advantage being driven by the law-makers and other self-anointed experts”

    well yes, witness David Gregory’s hatchet job on Glenn Greenwald yesterday.
    however. there is something else to think about here, and that is the old razzle-dazzle

    now you see it, now you don’t. if something is on the news you can be sure that there is something else going on in the shadows. while the public deals with the issue du jour, events have moved on to the new reality, which they have of course created.
    word to the wise, anytime the govt. tells you that they are looking out for you, watch out! you feint with the left, so you can land the right.

    all of this beggars the question, is all of this a part of our increasingly synthetic society, part of our cellular identity. as my father (the bastard) used to sit at the kitchen table and bitch about, it’s that damn “situation ethics”. the sliding scale is all very well until it turns into the slippery slope.
    the problem with deconstruction is that once society has been broken into pieces, tptb re-arrange the puzzle to their liking. post-modernism is great when it’s confined to pictures.
    be all this as it may, this is all part and parcel of the new viral, synthetic reality, where everything is simply a transaction, a transfer, and where being out of step with the system is the greatest crime.
    everything the people that own this planet do is to further insulate themselves from the reality they have created, the reality they sell to everybody else, that’s another question.
    yes indeed, wandering about in the wilderness, questioning everyone’s assumptions, it’s what heretics do.

    what it all boils down to is crowd control, what is required is a well oiled smoothly functioning system, that’s all they want. of course their proclaimed goals, their proclaimed morality and standards, about half the time they are in conflict with what they profess.

    so, give ’em the ol’ razzle dazzle.

    • kulturcritic says:

      Geer… the razzler daxxler!

      • the Heretick says:

        talkin’ bout JMG? history does not necessarily repeat itself. the only pattern we have to re-invent ourselves, or return to ourselves if you prefer, is nature. nature is the only teacher, the only thing that is still essentially out of our control.
        now we wish to control nature, to re-invent nature and ourselves, a dangerous game.
        nature does have recurring cycles, but to deduce from that, that human culture must necessarily have recurring cycles is not logical, or at least leaves chaos out of the reasoning.

        it is hard to tell if the deciders are in control, out of control, well-intentioned but out of their depth? the theorist who dovetails with Prof. B is Paul Virilio, and his whole thing is speed and system thinking. for every tech advance and change in human society there is always unforeseen consequences. to speak about much of what is happening today one must be theoretical, question every assumption and leave value judgments out of the equation. think paleo-borg, become the paleo-borg, then you shall know the glory of the group mind. 😉

  22. descarne says:

    A little overstated methinks. The people can change the hermeneutic too. Never say never. A Brazilian million person march under a big-spending liberal gov’t should not let us forget many Brazilians fought the good fight, very intelligently, in the time of the generals. It requires the courage of Manning, Snowden and Assange to change the discourse under a fascist regime. It’s America’s turn now. To whom much is given much is expected.

    • kulturcritic says:

      Interestingly enough, the person last awarded the Nobel Peace Prize is attempting to hide his mischief and his much-less-than-noble intentions by redefining those who would expose his ignoble acts.

      • the Heretick says:

        you got that right.

      • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

        I guess we might wonder if perhaps the corrupt igNobel Committee may have adopted Newspeak as its official language. The prize perhaps a little goad for the boys and girls of MiniPeace.

        As defined by MiniTrue, an act by the patron saint of broken promises cannot be ignoble or illegal. When the perpetrator of crimethought, Emmanuel Snowdenstein, is caught by ThoughtPol he will enjoy the same tender mercies of MiniLuv as the crimethinker Manning.

        Reverting to regularspeak, when the Borg Queen detected that rebellion had broken out on one of her cube ships, she would explode the ship, even her own. We can certainly lament that the paleo-borg have no such capability. Well, of course, they do have it, but must delegate the job to drones of uncertain loyalty and total destruction is much less certain. A risky proposition. The future is a foreign place. They do things so much better there.

  23. the Heretick says:

    stop me before i post again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    “let’s recognize that it is unlikely that the terrorism of Al Qaeda and others would have happened if not for nearly seven decades of a failed U.S. policy in the Middle East, Central Asia, and the Muslim world more generally. Since the United States filled the imperial void left by the weakening of Great Britain and France after World War II, our Middle East policy has been primarily aimed at maintaining a flow of oil and—just as important—a flow of oil profits that is advantageous to U.S. economic interests, especially as defined by elites.”

    Terror vs. Surveillance? Keeping Americans Safe in Two Simple Steps

    Jensen is pretty good sometimes, sometimes a bit too gloopy for me, oh my brothers and sisters………….don’t want you to think i’ve gone soft.
    that being said, there yo go.

    • Disaffected says:

      Keeping Americans Safe in ONE Easy Step:

      STOP playing global hegemon. PERIOD. Everything else will take care of itself in time.

      But THAT of course would mean renouncing cheap oil and the right to TAKE resources unilaterally, so it will never happen. See? No degrees, certificates, or titles required!

  24. Disaffected says:

    FUCKIN-A! kC is in full throat with this one!

  25. Disaffected says:

    Well, I would have posted a video of the Eagles singing A Long Road Out of Eden here, but evidently there’s some “legal” problem of some sort or another interfering with that. So either the Eagles Inc, the US Gov Inc, or some other mysterious entity has interfered with that.

    • Disaffected says:

      Not to be deterred, what do you do when plan A doesn’t pan out? Why you go to plan B of course. Which turns out to be better anyway.

      Moon shining down through the palms
      Shadows moving on the sand
      Somebody whispering the twenty-third psalm
      Dusty rifle in his trembling hands

      Somebody trying just to stay alive
      He got promises to keep
      Over the ocean in america
      Far away and fast asleep

      Silent stars blinking in the blackness of an endless sky
      Cold silver satellites, ghostly caravans passing by
      Galaxies unfolding, new worlds being born
      Pilgrims and prodigals creeping toward the dawn
      But it’s a long road out of eden

      Music blasting from an suv
      On a bright and sunny day
      Rolling down the interstate
      In the good ol’ usa

      Having lunch at the petroleum club
      Smokin’ fine cigars and swappin’ lives
      He said: “gimme ‘nother slice o’ that barbecued brisket!”
      “gimme ‘nother piece o’ that pecan pie!”

      Freeways flickering, cell phones chiming a tune
      We’re riding to utopia, road map says we’ll be arriving soon
      Captains of the old order clinging to the reins
      Assuring us these aches inside are only growing pains
      But it’s a long road out of eden

      Back home i was so certain
      The path was very clear
      But now i have to wonder: “what are we doing here?”
      I’m not counting on tomorrow
      And i can’t tell wrong from right
      But i’d give anything to be there in your arms tonight

      Weaving down the american highway
      Through the litter and the wreckage and the cultural junk
      Bloated with entitlement, loaded on propaganda
      And now we’re driving dazed and drunk

      Been down the road to damascus,
      The road to mandalay
      Met the ghost of caesar on the appian way
      He said, “it’s hard to stop this bingeing, once you get a taste.”
      “but the road to empire is a bloody stupid waste.”

      Behold the bitten apple – the power of the tools
      But all the knowledge in the world is of no use to fools
      And it’s a long road out of eden….

      • Disaffected says:

        By the way, it hardly escapes me as I sit here in the very capitalist luxury I decry, listening to the the very decriers of capitalist untruth that I support, decry the very untruths of capitalism, even as their very recorded words support its basic truths better than their words in protest ever could deny it. Conflicted? YES WE ARE!!!

    • Phlogiston Água de Beber says:

      No one has interfered with the play of this tune. I think it represents very well both in words and pictures what capitalism will do for those not piped into the money river. Proletarian luxury is the gift of imperialism. It’s the same under any system.

  26. the Heretick says:

    what lies underneath?
    if you could record the interface between nature and artifice?
    or take a recording of what television sounds like in the brain, from synapse to synapse?
    or the unseen effects of technology upon the human psyche?
    would it sound something like this?

    Alan Lamb – Primal Image

    new hermeneutics indeed.

    • kulturcritic says:

      Heretik – your insecurity is showing. LOL

      • the Heretick says:

        not at all, and i didn’t mean anything with the new hermeneutics bit, i just let it flow,
        not to take anything off subject, but looking at things from a different vantage point is illuminating sometimes. here is kind of a corny video, don’t be put off by the title, it’s probably a pretty accurate depiction.

        of course if you think about it, what’s depicted is what’s happening, we are trained to think in static arrangements.

  27. Disaffected says:

    I’d like to take a minute to post my take on the apparent schism between JMG, aka “Uncle Archy,” and Guy McPherson (most notably) and the whole doomer “apocalyptic community” in general. For those of you who read Archy’s blog every week, you may be impressed like I am with his rather thoughtful, well-researched, and well-considered take on things. Whatever else you think of the man, he’s well read (by my standards at least) in a practical sense, and I think his opinion definitely matters a great deal in the doomer, semi-doomer, return to nature, or whatever else the assorted and sundry alternative communities are calling themselves these days. That said, his thinking (like all of ours) is not without flaws.

    First, to briefly summarize, JMG’s last several posts have presented an academic and philosophic background on and rationale for the two current “extremist” positions regarding the issues that concern us all on boards like this – economic collapse, peak oil, global warming, and the sorrows of empire. And of course then, as he always does, he lays it all out in great detail and makes his points very well, rightly concluding that the extremist denialist and apocalyptic viewpoints are more often than not historically just flip sides of the same mindset. Points well made and taken as well. And then he compares that analysis to our current situation and stops just short of concluding out right (greatly infers?) that our situation is almost certainly just like that, and that we should all pull back, take a breath and stop to reassess our situation, and regroup as one to re-attack the great problems of our day with renewed focus on the future. So far, so good?

    So, response.

    First of all, JMG is primarily a Theosophical representative of a Theosophical Society (which he discloses right up front), so there’s always at least a small required investment in the status quo. I have no problem with that, but it’s a factor. A MAJOR factor in my opinion.

    Two, that same theosophical lens colors his thinking going forward regarding human sustainability and our place in the world. Let’s face it, human religious, philosophical, and theosophical people all view the world through a human oriented lens, regardless of the positive or negative shading they may choose to apply to it. Mention human eradication and they all get their hackles up, no matter how well they try to disguise it. JMG disguises it better than most, to be sure, but he’s still pretty damn resistant to the idea that humans could eradicate themselves altogether in such a short period of time.

    Onto the rest regarding Guy McPherson and his predictions in Part II in a few minutes (hopefully). I have an interruption right now.


    • Disaffected says:

      So, where was I?

      With regard to JMG’s various theosophical connections, over and above all else, they all imply a need to “be positive,” which I think infuses JMG’s work continually. As well it should, as that is definitely part and parcel of the whole “faith’ thing. Faith in things yet unseen and all that. And I’m good with that, I just think it should be reiterated that’s part of the deal. Is that a good thing? Yeah, I think for the most part it is, even for someone who is seemingly totally devoid of it (I’m not). And I think he makes good points across the board in that regard, but like all faith-based practitioners, I think he (possibly intentionally) underplays those aspects even as he makes them. No surprises there.

      With regard to Guy McPherson and the “extreme doomer” community, JMG seems to be falling into the same trap as all of the rest of the “main stream” media – painting us all with the EXTREMELY wide brush of “yeah, we’ve heard all that Cassandra shit before, and we ain’t listening to it anymore,” before presenting his altogether more “reasonable and practical point of view from his “exalted” point of view as to why we’re all just numb-nuts in loin cloths howling at the moon. Yeah right.

      So on to Guy and his “ilk” and the meat of the issue…

    • the Heretick says:

      JMG’s latest post is his best in a long time, because he comments upon the tangible possibilities, not philosophies from the last century, or before.
      stop and think about it, nothing has to repeat, if it does we may not recognize the pattern.
      JMG prattles on about Spengler, Nietzsche, et. al. because that’s what he knows and it makes him appear erudite, i find it unreadable.
      so, here we have plenty of people trying to predict, or change, the future by reacting to the dialectic of the past.

      as far as collapse goes? i actually tend to agree with his assessment, although i think he leaves the cascading failure of complex systems out of his equation. the problem is that his analysis relies too much upon analyzing people and not the environment, that and he fails to realize the truth of the effects of modern mass psychology upon the masses, which is of course a failing of many who reject marxist analysis. not to say marxism has not itself been outstripped by events, of course class struggle is still with us, it just manifests quite differently.

      • Disaffected says:

        Agreed. I read his post this week and it took a little steam out of some of the critiques I was gonna make, although JMG still – as always – strikes me as just a tad smug and sure in his analyses. Yeah, negative feedback loops surely exist in nature now as they always have, and yeah, they usually put out small crises before they become global crises. BUT, I think the more extreme global warming analyses, which Guy’s are certainly a part of, pretty much account for all that already, so – as usual – I think Archy’s overstating his case somewhat.

        But in the end, I don’t think all of that amounts to much anyway. After all of JMG’s denouncement of the extremist’s point of view up front, he usually paints a picture of catabolic collapse that is nearly identical anyway, except that he soft sells the end result somewhat in comparison. Whereas Guy predicts (near?) extinction by 2030 (and by the way, is that even a fair current characterization of his views?), JMG predicts something that to most current inhabitants of the planet would seem very much like extinction, but without (of course) many justifications or specifics, other than the usual “that’s the way it has always gone before.” But to be fair, he actually, he does offer some generalized scientific theory justifications (which I’m not qualified to evaluate) for why things have been even worse before climatically and which humanity survived just fine, but once again, he leaves out the inconvenient fact that the world didn’t have 7B humans on board at the time driving things their own way ON TOP of whatever natural changes were occurring at the time.

        In summary, while I remain impressed at the intellect and argumentation powers of JMG, I remain much less than totally convinced by the long term arguments he makes.

        Will any of that make any difference in the long run? I doubt it. Smarter people than either of us, who will soon inherit a problem that we will soon be relieved via natural causes, are already alive and will no doubt take this discussion to levels we can’t even yet imagine in the coming years. If Guy McPherson turns out to be right and the apocalypse is indeed right around the corner, will JMG’s “positivist” message turn out to be the best we could do with a bad situation (the proverbial shit sandwich) after all? Don’t know. Conversely, should JMG be right, and Guy McPherson’s message turns out to be just so much overblown hyperbole like all before it, is that an altogether bad thing that we should have avoided at all costs? Don’t know once again. So, once again, I’m conflicted.

        What do I think is the most likely case? I think Guy’s on to the nut of it (and, by the way, I was already convinced of this long before I ever heard his name; although, he’s surely reinforced that idea in my mind GREATLY). I think we’re imparting global climate change that can’t be fully experienced or undone on human timescales, and I think it will lead to a global extinction event by any normal definition of the word within 100-200 years at the most. Quibbling over this or that year, as JMG rightly asserts is pretty much useless, but I think it’s definitely coming. AND, I think it’s already locked in. THAT should probably be the primary point of all future discussions.

  28. Disaffected says:

    Just another reason Jackson Browne is one of the enduring GOOD things produced by American capitalism:

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