Category Archives: Philosophical Musings

How Donald Trump Can Restore the Republic in Just 5 Steps

constitution

As you’ve probably noticed by now, even though President Donald Trump has only been in office for about a month…the Neo-Liberals are still in virtual hysterics about his administration, and there appears to be something of a soft coup happening within the GOP establishment itself as his cabinet nominees face heavy opposition by both the Democrats and his own party. Of course, the mainstream media continues its own verbal assault on the airwaves of the Trump administration as people like Michael Flynn becomes the latest casualty of political warfare when he was supposedly less than forthcoming about his links with Russia while up for Secretary of National Security. So, while I’m not a huge advocate of Trump, it seems the height of absurdity to be as hyperbolically hating as the Left has been of late, particularly when you consider that he’s made a few positive moves and has barely been in office.

What kinds of people does the mainstream media (or as Donald Trump quite rightly calls them “the fake news”) go to for information about Trump and his particular brand of populist politics? One guy that I saw pop up twice in the span of a week was the Chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, Richard Haas. First, he was on the Charlie Rose Show, and then he made an appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher. The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) has been the primary pool from which the State Department and White House has stacked the deck in favor of “New World Order” globalists, who have pushed for American interventionism abroad and erasure of national sovereignty at home. In tracing the lineage of the CFR, we can see that it was a US offshoot of the British Royal Institute of International Affairs (RIIA), which itself was a branch of the British elitist Cecil Rhodes’ Round Table Group that sought, through secretive means, to usher in a one world government with Great Britain at its head. After WWII and the devastation wrought by the Nazis, Britain’s military power was no longer the dominant player in the world largely via its superior naval fleet, and the United States became the dominate military superpower that could be employed by elites in the City of London and bankers in Basel, Switzerland to do the dirty work of policing the world on behalf of the cabal.

We can guess with some fair degree of certainty that (like her husband Bill) had Hillary Clinton won the presidency, she would have stacked her cabinet positions with members of the CFR and pushed for greater military action against Russia, which could have very well spiraled out of control into a WWIII scenario. But, instead of being thankful that we dodged that horrible bullet, smug self-righteous “neo-liberals” like Bill Maher whines and screams about Trump’s insanity, as if he’s about to press the nuclear button any day now if the leader of foreign country so much as Tweets an insult about him. It’s enough to make you vomit, quite frankly, and that’s why I wanted to wanted to write an article of sanity and cautious faith about how Trump could theoretically help restore this nation’s Republic to its constitutional underpinnings and go a long way toward ending what some have referred to as the “Secret Government” that acts as a state within a state in this country. So here, in no particular order, are my prescriptions for ending our long national nightmare in unconstitutional government that has held the Republic hostage since the time of the Civil War.

1. Abolish the Federal Reserve System 

The Federal Reserve Banking System isn’t owned by the US government, i.e. it isn’t federal at all. It is actually a private banking cartel made up of 12 international banks, the predominate controlling interest of which is the Bank of England that’s controlled by the Rothschild Family, and it in turn completely controls this nation’s money and monetary policy. According to the US Constitution, only the US government has the right to issue the nation’s currency and determine the legal tender thereof. After all, the founding fathers were well aware of the economic disasters that would befall this country were that power to fall into private banker’s hands. However, as G. Edward Griffin wrote about in his magnum opus, The Creature From Jekyll Island, that is exactly what did happen when some the world’s richest industrialists and financiers like J.P. Morgan and Paul Warburg met off the coast of Georgia on a private island in complete secrecy. Within three short years of this meeting, the Col. Mandel House controlled President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act into law while most congressmen were on their Christmas vacation break none the wiser in 1913, and the international bankers have controlled this country ever since.

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Now, instead of the US being able to print and coin its own money based on the intrinsic value of gold and silver, it must borrow fiat Federal Reserve Notes with interest that can never be paid back in full but for which the American people become perpetually indebted and in a sense feudal slaves to the same bankers, who gave them worthless pieces of paper backed by nothing but faith that it can continue to be an instrument of legal tender for all goods and services. Naturally, inflation is the byproduct of such a system, and crashes (like that of 1929) can be engineered by the Fed constriction of the money supply, which is exactly what happened.

Unfortunately, we can still see the heavy influence of Goldman Sachs even in the Trump administration, as we did in previous ones with former Goldman Sachs man, Steven Mnuchin, becoming the Secretary of the Treasury. And, we all know by now that the 2008 crash was largely the result of the toxic mortgage securities that Goldman Sachs was peddling on the global financial market as AAA rated when they were anything but. It has also come to light through the investigative work of Rolling Stone reporter, Matt Taibbi, that Goldman Sachs even made a killing “shorting” those same securities that they knew were worthless. In other words, they bet that the securities would tank, and they of course did. That along with the trillions in derivatives being traded brought the financial system to its knees, but the US government allowed themselves to be held hostage to the financial fraud and bailed out the “Too Big To Fail” banks to the tune of billions at tax payer expense, while the Fed kept interest rates extremely low and pumped 40 billion a month into bloated banks to keep them solvent.

All this is to say that Trump and the Congress with him should abolish the Federal Reserve System by revoking its charter, back the currency with gold and silver again, wipe out all debts to the parasitic bankers destroying peoples’ lives through predatory lending practices and negative amortization interest rates, and throw the white collar criminals that wreck financial havoc in the world in prison the way that Iceland did. Then, the American people should move back to small local branch banks that stay out of Wall Street casino-like schemes and Credit Unions that offer low interest loans to small businesses, which is ostensibly what the middle of America that voted for Trump need more than just about anything…(i.e. access to capital).

2.  Eliminate the War on Drugs

Despite the near constant propaganda that we’re fed from early primary school onward, the so-called “War on Drugs” is really just a “War on People”, particularly people of color who are trying to escape their miserable lives by getting high. And while I fully recognize that this form of escapism only leads to greater addiction, social problems, job instability, and health issues- it is merely symptomatic of the much greater societal ills plaguing impoverished communities that would largely go away were they to be addressed properly. People can become addicted to damn near anything, if they’re in enough pain and are psychologically predisposed to substance abuse. So, for instance, we’ve seen plenty of examples of people that are addicted to food, porn, shopping, television, etc. And yet, you don’t see the criminalization of people, who are addicted to maxing out their husband’s credit card on the Home Shopping Network while they scarf down boxes of powered donuts and smoke packs of Newport cigarettes even though these things are far worse health wise than doing a couple of weed bong hits.

Besides, if the government really cared about peoples’ health, it wouldn’t be dropping depleted uranium bombs, spraying chemtrails that contain toxic substances, injecting its own soldiers with vaccines that contain toxic adjuncts, allowing Aspartame, MSG, GMOs, Nitrites, etc. into the food supply and so on. Obviously, illicit drug use is a health problem, but the “War on Drugs” treats it as a criminal offense by locking people up in prison for draconian sentences that ruin their lives even worse than before. Think about this for a minute. The US makes up only 5% of the world’s population, and yet it locks far more people than any other country (many of whom we would consider to be totalitarian). There are some 2.2 million people incarcerated in this country, and about 70% are there for non-violent offenses such as mere possession of a Schedule I narcotic like cocaine, heroin, PCP, and even marijuana.

Alcohol Prohibition should have taught this country a very valuable lesson when it comes to the criminalization of any drugs and the realization that people won’t stop using a substance just because the government deems it immoral. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that drug criminalization is used to target disenfranchised minority populations in this country, particularly black people, as a means to neutralize their ability to organize and prosper on the one hand and funnel them into a for profit prison-industrial-slave-system on the other. You can learn a lot more about how this is done even in the music industry by reading John Potash’s excellent book Drugs as Weapons Used Against Us. The British targeted Chinese wealth by addicting them to opium and the CIA did the same thing in the 1960’s to the counterculture movement using LSD in order to neutralize and finally criminalize the hippies and various musical icons of the era that burned themselves out and died prematurely. The Black Panther Party were hit especially hard during that time with the FBI Cointelpro Program to eliminate their efforts of creating self-sustainable communities within black neighborhoods and turn them into dependent wards of the state, which is largely what happened.

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The strategy therefore was to dope them into utter poverty, stupidity, and dependency on the one hand and then criminalize them for becoming addicted to drugs on the other hand that were intentionally introduced into the communities for the purposes of neutralizing a potential threat of their radicalization to the status quo of the powers that be. Unfortunately, I don’t see Trump tackling this one any time soon. He has made some strong comments very much in favor of strong “law and order” policing, after the rioting that erupted on the streets of Ferguson and elsewhere, and the GOP is known to be strict when it comes to enforcing the absurd drug laws. However, Trump is likely smart enough to recognize a losing proposition when he sees one from the standpoint of the business term, “Return on Investment” (ROI). And, by any calculus, the bogus “War on Drugs” has been an abysmal failure in that regard. Meanwhile, states like Colorado and Washington are proving what a boon that marijuana legalization can have on their local economies, since these marijuana dispensaries create good paying jobs in a huge emerging market, help alleviate suffering among people with various medical conditions, and allow for greater taxation to support local infrastructure and services. In other words, it’s a win-win for everyone involved, except those handful of corrupt people like the drug cartels and private prison system administrators that profit from its criminalization. In the case of legalized pharmaceuticals that kill far more people every year than illicit drugs to the tune of about 100,000 per year, the hypocrisy of the “Drug War” is glaringly obvious as well, and I think Trump knows it. He recently appointed longtime vaccine critic, Robert Kennedy Jr., as the lead investigator of a committee investigating vaccine safety issues having met with Dr. Andrew Wakefield and others who seriously studied the dangerous links between the MMR vaccine and the huge rise in childhood autism rates. This, at least, is a very positive sign.

3. Completely Dismantle the CIA

A goodly portion of why #2 is as big of problem as it is can be directly attributed to the CIA, which is by far the world’s largest narcotics trafficker in the world. There is voluminous evidence of this from many whistle-blowers in the know, many of whom were former CIA and DEA agents themselves. So, for instance, during the Vietnam War (itself an Agency counterinsurgency war) the CIA ran their own proprietary planes called Air America with opium that was produced in the Golden Triangle area of Southeast Asia between Burma, Cambodia, and Laos. Even the bodies of returning dead US soldiers were reported to have played a part in the operation of heroin trafficking, when certain body bags were designated and filled with heroin loaded onto C-130 cargo planes bound for the US. Returning vets from Vietnam were often already addicted to heroin, and it became a scourge for much of the 1970s.

In the 1980’s, while the CIA was training Central and South American dictators in the finer points of torture at the School of the Americas that would create many of the death squads that plagued El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Columbia among others, the CIA-trained Contras were fighting the Marxist Sandinistas with weapons given to them by the CIA. During the Iran-Contra era, arms were being flown into Central America via Panama and cocaine flown out into the US by CIA contract pilots like Barry Seal. However, narcotics trafficking is just one of the ways the agency raises black money to fight its dirty wars and undermine democratically elected officials abroad for reasons that are largely to do with keeping them tied to the hip with certain US multinational corporations and in fealty to so-called US geopolitical interests.

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As Douglas Valentine recently stated in a new book that he wrote about the agency, “The CIA is not primarily an information collection agency but is rather primarily engaged in covert action.” What is meant by the term, covert action? It means things like training foreign mercenaries, undermining elections, orchestrating coup d’etats, industrial and/or corporate sabotage, and assassination of foreign leaders. In addition to these dubious acts that aren’t necessarily in our best interests, the CIA finds time to conduct mind-control experiments on US citizens such as during MK-ULTRA, infiltrate most of the major media via Operation Mockingbird, and recruit former Nazis into its inner most ranks during the Allen Dulles initiated Operation Paperclip. And, we also shouldn’t forget that it was John F. Kennedy who attempted to “smash the CIA into a thousand pieces” and scatter it to the winds that likely was the final straw that got JFK killed by hit men either a part of the agency or recruited directly by them. However, Allen Dulles’ appointment to the Warren Commission assured that the truth about CIA involvement in the JFK assassination would never be revealed, and those that did know too much, like the late Dorothy Kilgallen, were eliminated from digging any further.

Much has been made about how the CIA doesn’t trust Donald Trump with presidential national security briefings, but I think Trump is at least savvy enough to recognize how these daily reports can be manipulated and cooked however they want to get a desired result and action. Having witnessed the bogus assumptions of Iraq having WMD’s from a distance, Trump is no doubt leery of their accuracy now that the intelligence agencies have decided to target Vladamir Putin’s Russia. The CIA represents nothing less than a rogue criminal and very dangerous fascist-oriented company, who operate in utter secrecy on behalf of a handful of elite business, political, financial, and criminal interests that runs counter to everything a free and sovereign Republic stands for. Philosophically, it is a Machiavellian death cult aligned with Nazis and members of Skull and Bones with more blood on its hands than it can ever hope to atone for and works against our true national security interests, since it is impervious to accountability and executive control. For these reasons and a whole lot more, the CIA should be completely dismantled in favor of a genuine intelligence gathering agency with executive, judicial, and congressional oversight, which could be decided upon after a lengthy moratorium and “Truth and Reconciliation” commission deliberated so as to prevent it from ever happening again. Were Trump to ever be as bold, brazen, and brave as to break apart the CIA, though, I would first recommend him as a national hero and then recommend he beef up his security detail.

4. Cut All Ties to the Saudis and the State of Israel

George Washington once admonished this newly formed country to trade with all but have foreign entanglements with none. Unfortunately, the US trades with some (and yet maintains a huge trade deficit as cheap Chinese goods flood into the country but few US manufactured goods flow the other way) and remains heavily entangled in foreign conflicts abroad. And yet, of all the foreign entanglements that the US has, none has been more disastrous for this nation than its undying allegiance to the prospering of the State of Israel. Much of our current problems in the Middle East would resolve themselves if we were to do two crucial things.

We should first eliminate our dependency on Saudi oil. The Saudis are of course Sunni Muslim, and they are also the primary funders for the most radical fundamentalist brand of Islam known as Wahabism, which is fueling groups like Al-Nusra, Al-Qaeda, and ISIS. However, we claim that these are enemy terrorist groups that need to be wiped out. So, much of the money that goes to buy weapons and fund radical Islamic groups intent on Western destruction comes from Saudi Arabia and the billionaire Sheiks that rule that country like their own brutal fiefdom, and yet the US continues to protect and shield them from prosecution for crimes against humanity because they have the largest known oil reserves in the world. The US oil companies have found many untapped oil reserves in Alaska and the northern shelf including in things like shale rock, but they can’t tap them. Of course, I’m of the belief that we could completely switch over to renewable and even free energy sources were the oil industry and their likely CIA counterparts to take their boots off the necks of various inventors, but the point is (regardless of whether you believe in these alternative technologies or only in traditional forms)…there’s absolutely no reason we should be beholden to OPEC and Saudi oil.

And yet, as bad as that is, the Israelis are controlling the US even more horribly from the inside. Israel continues to build illegal settlements in the West Bank, bulldoze Palestinian houses, erect huge concrete razer wire walls, kill innocent men, women, and children in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, and conduct major espionage operations within the US that steal classified information from our major intelligence agencies all without penalty whatsoever. Far from being lone operators like Jonathon Pollard, there are massive spy rings like the one the DEA discovered in the lead up to 9/11 that I discussed in a previous article. The Israeli spy ring made up what were likely Israeli Mossad agents posing as art students and were seen infiltrating major military installations around Washington D.C. and other government facilities of strategic interest. Some were even found to be watching the Twin Towers collapse and cheering along with filming the event. And yet, the FBI grilled some of the more suspicious members and then let them go. Why? I maintain that they likely had diplomatic immunity from prosecution due to the very “special” relationship that the US has had with Israel, since its founding. And, it is widely known that Mossad and CIA work together on operations all the time, the inside job of 9/11 being the most notorious one to date but by no means exclusive of their longtime cooperation with one another.

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As the late former Rep. James Trafficant revealed several times to no avail, the Israeli Lobby on the Hill known as AIPAC exercises near total control over the US Congress when it comes to every piece of legislation that is passed which concerns Israel. Congressmen and women that proffer their undying loyalty to Israel through word and deed are rewarded with heavy campaign contributions and media praise, while those that utter the slightest criticism usually suffer a combination of heavy character assassination and defeat at the polls in the next election cycle. Virtually everybody is so afraid of being labeled an anti-Semite that they don’t dare question the legitimacy of Israel’s bloody crimes against the Palestinian people, whose land they stole and lives they continue to destroy in their utterly racist Apartheid country.

So, when we learn of how the US gives Israel some $40 Billion a year in foreign aid money plus many millions worth in the newest armaments, it’s no wonder that it becomes an obvious sore spot to the entire Middle East that we aren’t a true neutral party to peace in the region when every action or non-action taken by the US shows it to be heavily one-sided in favor of Israel. Dumping Israel will be no easy task, since he would likely have the entire Congress up in arms along with the largely Jewish-owned major media that hates him anyway. Donald Trump’s speech before AIPAC during his campaign was extremely laudatory towards the Israelis, and he appeared to be very much a staunch ally and advocate of Israel and by extension the Zionists that run it. However, on the positive side Trump has already made a move that would appear to at least limit AIPAC’s influence in the US Congress when he passed an Executive Order that Eliminates Foreign Nation Lobbying. Time will tell if it’s ever enforced however, since the only foreign power lobby that has the ability to steer US foreign policy against even real US national interests is AIPAC as far as I can see. If his speech before AIPAC was simply political theater to garner Zionist support that he knew he’d need to win, Trump will have temporarily at least outsmarted the Israelis. However, I have my doubts that this is the case, especially given the Zionist Jewish control of much of the NYC business and political establishment and Trump’s great success within that very milieu that I doubt would have happened were he antagonistic to their interests. In the case of 911, he seems intent on targeting the Saudis and leaving the Israelis out of it.

5. Control the Border Allowing for Legal Immigration Only

The last step to restoring the Republic seems like a “no brainer”, and yet our southern border with Mexico has remained porous for as long as I can remember. There never seemed to be the political will to want to seriously address the issue the way that Trump did in his campaign, which I believe was a big reason for his grassroots popularity with conservative Americans in the Midwest and South and just as likely a big reason for the vitriol coming from the liberals on the East and West Coasts. For the latter group, his promises to build a wall and have Mexico pay for it sounded both absurd and racist. After all, it’s absurd to think that we could build a wall that long, and yet there already are walls in many places. If China could build a huge wall to keep out Mongol invaders in the 13th Century, why couldn’t the US build one in the 21st?

And yet, I maintain that an actual physical wall is largely unnecessary given all the high-tech surveillance equipment that the US employs these days to spy and control the average citizen. So, why not just point these electronic fences, cameras, and motion detectors out instead of pointing them inward towards us? The reason the Democrats never wanted to fix the border problem was because Hispanics were likely to vote Democratic in future elections as the DNC builds its platform on supposedly caring about the poor, indigent, victimized, people of color. And, the reason why the GOP never fixed the problem was because they’re the party of big business, tax cuts for the rich, and deregulation. And while I don’t expect those traditional Republican aspects to fundamentally change under the Trump administration (he is after all a wealthy white business man), Trump was supported largely because he promised to care about the interests of the common, largely working-class poor, and disgruntled white man pissed off about our open border policy that strains social services, creates crime and dissension within communities, and depresses wages when illegal immigrants are allowed to flood across the border with impunity. But, most Republican politicians would rather help their rich business cronies exploit cheap labor than address the issue of border security directly. After all, it’s not even considered politically correct according to the national pollsters…right? Wrong!

Turns out, millions of Americans were sick and tired of being sick and tired, and when the chance arrived to finally address the issue of the open southern border…they leaped at the chance from someone that at least verbally took it on rather than sugar coated the issue with political double-speak. Again, I firmly believe that in the case of good old American knowhow, where there’s a will, there’s a way. Previously, there wasn’t the political will, whereas now (at least so far as president Trump is concerned) there is. So, I hope for our sake, including all those immigrants who actually went through the long, arduous, and costly investment of coming to this country “legally”, the problem of our porous border gets fixed once and for all. After all, can anyone imagine a country that has national boundaries remaining a sovereign nation for very long with integrity, when anyone can simply come in regardless of their ideology, background, abilities, and criminal record?

Or, conversely, imagine if you wanted to immigrate to (by worldly standards) a prosperous and beautiful country like Sweden, for instance. Would you be allowed to stay there without a work or student VISA, get a driver’s license, enroll in their public school with a specially assigned Swedish as a Second Language Teacher, get free medical care and other social welfare programs meant for the Swedish people, etc.? Of course not. So, why does this country criminalize actual citizens for such ridiculous superficial pablum as smoking in bars, drinking a beer outside, and jaywalking but allows illegal immigration to tear the social fabric of neighborhoods apart until nothing much of value remains?

When you consider the social engineering at play here, it becomes fairly obvious that it was allowed to happen so as to bring the US down to a level of relative parity with other Third World countries to slowly chip away at its strong civic, cultural, and economic foundations and eventually merge it with transnational governmental organizations like what would be called the North American Union (NAU) just as Europe did with the European Union (EU). These regional so-called unions or blocks could then be administered through an unaccountable corporate bureaucratic elite that would eliminate the last vestiges of what remains of our Constitutional Republic so that it becomes just another province of the One World Government run by an international cartel of transnational corporate socialists, technocrats, and fascists. The good news, from my point of view, is that Donald Trump signed an Executive Order canceling the US involvement with the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and fully recognizes the disaster of our open border policy with Mexico and economic damage wrought by the passage of NAFTA, GATT, and the FTAA that the TPP was a continuation of in Southeast Asia. Despite the severe push back from the controlled media, I certainly hope he continues to make good on his many campaign promises and begins the very tough but absolutely necessary promise to “Drain the Washington Swamp”. These 5 Steps to Restoring the Republic would, I believe, go a very long way toward doing that very thing.

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Crispin Glover, Hollywood Materialism, and 9/11 Predictive Programming

What is It Cover Art

“The United States has it’s own propaganda, but it’s very effective because people don’t realize that it’s propaganda. And it’s subtle, but it’s actually a much stronger propaganda machine than the Nazis had but it’s funded in a different way. With the Nazis it was funded by the government, but in the United States, it’s funded by corporations and corporations they only want things to happen that will make people want to buy stuff. So whatever that is, then that is considered okay and good, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it really serves people’s thinking – it can stupefy and make not very good things happen.” – Crispin Hellion Glover

Recently, I had the distinct opportunity to see “Crispin Glover Live”, where he gave a series of slide show presentations that left me in a state of what I would describe as bemused confusion at what exactly I was witnessing. After all, how does one begin to fully explain what a reading and rendering of a book about the intricacies of rat catching and cadavers from a professional in the field of dissection and listing of anatomical features interspersed with what appear to be a series of drawings, book passages, and black-and-white photographs from the 1950s really mean? Next, he showed his surreal movie “What is It?”, a Jungian-like exploration of the unconscious adventures of a motley cast of characters, mostly with Down Syndrome, that involved a white guy in black face, a running motif of a dissolving snail being salted, and Crispin Glover himself playing some kind of cruel king of the underworld surrounded by a bevy of topless women with animal heads and one grown man in a diaper lying a crib. Honestly, you can’t make this crazy shit up! But, Crispin Glover can and did make this up…creating what I’m sure was one of the greatest WTF moments in many warped peoples’ minds that were lucky enough to be there that night with me at the Alamo Drafthouse.

Most of you, however, probably remember Crispin Glover not from his personal surreal film oddities like the aforementioned “What is It?” but rather his acting in idiosyncratic roles like Dale in David Lynch’s Wild at Heart. It was his breakthrough role as the nerdy and socially-awkward George McFly, who is able to rise to the occasion against his arch nemesis Biff with the help of his future son played by Michael J. Fox, where Crispin Glover became a recognizable actor in Hollywood. Unfortunately, one gets the impression that Hollywood never really fully appreciated his decidedly bizarre choice of characters that were to follow and nor especially the anti-corporate ethos regarding his own creative work. Even on the celebrity talk show circuit, Glover was quickly typecast as a dangerous weirdo, as his appearance on Letterman would clearly show when he was kicked off the show for well…”kicking on the show”.

Crispin Glover in Shades

However, behind the largely unpretentious, darkly humorous, and quirky character turns of Glover lay a much overlooked critical and very perceptive mind that saw the Hollywood system for what it really represented to those unfamiliar with its inner workings. This came out during an enlightening session of Q&A at the end of the movie where Glover talked about the creative straight jacket of Hollywood and how experimental movies such as his own are essentially locked out of any commercial distribution through the main theater chain outlets. This obviously isn’t that surprising given that the commercial theater chains only real objective is to maximize profit on a per screen basis and will quickly cut anything that isn’t pulling in the numbers they want, which is why you rarely see any documentaries playing on the silver screen except in a handful of small theaters that also play indie and foreign films. It was during this Q&A that Crispin Glover spoke about what became something of a defining moment for him. He was working on the set of Back to the Future that would soon make him into a household name with director Robert Zemeckis. Originally, after Marty McFly returned to his new and improved family that now lived in a wealthy neighborhood where the kids all had great professions as opposed to low-paying jobs, the McFly family had a black servant. Glover politely mentioned to the director how this might appear racist to black audiences, and Zemeckis wisely changed the servant to a newly humbled Biff putting a second coat of wax on George McFly’s fancy car. However, the underlying assumption of the movie remained unchanged in Glover’s mind as he relates in this interview on the Opie and Anthony Show where he speaks about the controversy surrounding his feud with Robert Zemeckis.

Back to the Future

So, just what is the subtext of Back to the Future’s ending? “A self-realized and happy existence equals a rich and materialistic life.” Is this the message? Or, am I oversimplifying the underlying message of Back to the Future? Could the onetime yuppie star of the greed obsessed 1980s, Michael J. Fox, who started out as a teenage Reagan wet dream in the sitcom “Family Ties” and graduated to movies that celebrated the ego-centric corporate ladder climbing purpose of life in movies such as The Secret of My Success really be about nothing more profound than the joys of materialism? When Crispin Glover probed the question further, Robert Zemeckis told him point blank- “Listen, I don’t care about artistry. I want to be rich!!” There you have it. And, no doubt with such blockbusters as Forest Gump under his belt, Robert Zemeckis would indeed become rich beyond his wildest dreams as he knew all too well how to cater to audiences’ expectations in terms of what makes for mass entertaining movie. This blockbuster formula would be followed to a “T” even better by Hollywood’s Golden Boy director of the last 40 years, Steven Spielberg, beginning with Jaws released back in 1975.

It is a formula that has been followed perhaps a bit too well over the years, and Glover reserves some particularly pointed barbs for Spielberg that you can see in a classic chapter that he wrote in the brilliantly subversive book, Apocalypse Culture II. Interestingly, the book was edited and published by Adam Parfrey of Feral House, who also just so happens to play the Minstrel character in Glover’s “What is It?” movie mentioned previously. I specifically asked Crispin Glover about the comments he made in Apocalypse Culture II and Spielberg (in particular) for those in attendance that were unfamiliar with the book, and he reiterated again how he didn’t like Steven Spielberg movies at all and thought that they were totally subservient to the corporate ethos. In fact, he said that the only movie he somewhat liked of Spielberg’s entire oeuvre was A.I. that was released as something of a homage to Stanley Kubrick after he died and never got the chance to do the film. Kubrick told Spielberg that he thought he should do the movie instead given his worries that he might make the movie too cerebral, whereas we all know we needn’t worry about Spielberg making something too intellectually probing. However, while I would agree with Glover that A.I. had some rather interesting philosophical themes, I too wish that Kubrick had been the one to make the movie, since I’m sure he would have made a much more profound and interesting film.

At one point in Apocalypse Culture II, Glover chastises Spielberg for completely missing the point of Kubrick’s philosophy as when Spielberg calls Kubrick’s movies “hopeful”. He then rhetorically asks, “Was A Clockwork Orange hopeful? Was Full Metal Jacket hopeful?” Clearly, one begins to wonder just how Spielberg was seeing these movies if indeed he was seeing them at all. Kubrick was often criticized for portraying humanity as too dark, too unethical, and too morally ambiguous…but hopeful? Hardly a word I would use to describe his work. This isn’t to say that there weren’t little moments in his pictures like his future wife, Christiane, singing a German folk song to a group of hardened WWI French soldiers in Paths of Glory that didn’t tap into a kind of universal sentimental zeitgeist, but (unlike Spielberg) he was not a “sentimental” director in the sense of mawkishly milking emotionalism within his movies to garner greater appreciation and recognition. In other words, he saw deeply into much of the dark abyss that lies within men’s souls and wasn’t afraid to portray it on screen without apology and without the usual formulaic redemption scene that accompanies most Hollywood movies that touch on the darker aspects of humanity these days. That shows real courage, in my opinion, instead of merely skillfully manipulating an audience’s emotions to love the hero, hate the villain, and be roused from their seats with a John Williams score and “happily ever after ending”. Even the late, great director Sidney Lumet once quipped that he couldn’t stand American audiences because- “They are totally sentimental.” I would wholeheartedly agree with at least this sentiment and add (due to this) also highly predictable in their tastes.

Apocalypse Culture II

What is even more interesting, however, about a movie like Back to the Future is that it has scenes of predictive programming woven into the plot that (if you watch carefully) actually predict what will occur on September 11th, 2001. How does a movie that came out in 1985 predict perhaps the single most important geopolitical event of the last 40 years some 31 years in the future? It would certainly seem highly unlikely that scenes in the Back to the Future franchise foreshadowing 9/11 were mere coincidence. So, for instance, the mall where Marty and Doc meet to test the Delorean time machine took place at Twin Pines mall, a reference to the Twin Towers. Also, if you turn the clock upside down, it reads 9:11. Later in the movie, the Twin Pines are replaced with a Lone Pine. Why? Also, when Doc sets up a rig to wire the electricity from a lightning strike into the time machine so that Marty can leap back into the future from 1955 to 1985, the hands on the clock tower are set at 9 and 11. Marty then tries to warn Doc about the future where he will be shot by Muslim terrorists at the mall for stealing plutonium. Get that last part? Something sounds awfully familiar and fishy about this plot. In Back to the Future I and II, there are also similar signs and symbols throughout that act as a form of “psychic programming” about the assassination of John F. Kennedy. As an example, there is the town square that is an exact replica of the layout of Dealy Plaza in Dallas where in a storefront window has a severed head of JFK. This is also the same block where the Delorean time machine is struck by lightning, which is symbolic of the assassination itself in the motorcade. Finally, just to drive the point home, the movie Back to the Future II was released on November 22nd. Ring a bell, anyone?

Hollywood movies are notorious for “predictive programming” that I believe act like subconscious triggering mechanisms that both condition the public for what is to come and signal to those “in the know” what could be described as a kind of sick inside joke for the cabal orchestrating these false-flags and psy-ops. It’s their way of absolving themselves through a kind of occult admission and public submission through hiding their handiwork in plain sight, as it were. Or, as Stanley Kubrick would have it, you watch these films with Eyes Wide Shut whereas they can read the subtext, programming, symbolism, numerology, and sorcery behind the overt plot of the movie. Granted, not all movies are embedded with such layers of meaning and predictive programming, but those that are would certainly be popular enough to do their job on the public psyche at large, which by now is global. Unfortunately, for the vast majority of Americans, this would be considered virtual lunacy to bring up in mixed conversation and naturally most all movie critics are completely oblivious to this topic. That is because we are “symbolic illiterate”, whereas secret societies like the Scottish Rite of Freemasons (especially in the higher degrees) are symbol literate.

Albert Pike

All symbols be they corporate logos, political emblems, or religious iconography has layers of meaning that can be traced through time immemorial and throughout various historical cultures, each one of which may have imbued it with their own particular nexus of meaning and purpose. And, as Carl G. Jung spoke about, there are those ancient and archaic symbols that stir in us what some have referred to as genetic memory to the point where they might as well be etched onto our very DNA. This is what he called “archetypes of the collective unconscious”. Naturally, it would behoove us greatly to know from whence these symbols first arose and what their deeper occult meaning is as understood by the mystery schools throughout the ages, but we are woefully uneducated about these matters and can therefore be triggered (and consequently manipulated) with certain symbols that are used by adepts within the media. This need not be the case, however, and I would urge you to take a crash course in “Symbolic Literacy” by either picking up a few books on the subject, checking out the work of modern symbolist and mythologist Michael Tsarion, and/or reading some of the excellent articles on the subject at http://www.vigilantcitizen.com/


The Need for a New Black Consciousness in an Era Plagued by Thugs on Both Sides of the Racial Divide

Frederic Douglas

In light of the events of Ferguson, MO, I would like to take this time to write about some of my views regarding black radicalism, police brutality, and the necessity for a revival of a strong “black consciousness” in America…an aspect of which is a new found black militancy. Given how thoroughly dumbed-down, manipulated, and reactionary the current dialogue on race politics is in the media, it is high time that we look back on the African American experience with a sharp eye focused on what could be described as radical voices by today’s PC standards but are very worthy and necessary in understanding just what is going on today in the major cities of this country, where black people are actually worse off than they were some 50 years ago. Therefore, let us begin with a quote by the influential black intellectual and writer, James Baldwin, who wrote these words to his 14-year-old nephew:

“You were born where you were born and faced the future that you faced because you were black and for no other reason. The limits to your ambition were thus expected to be settled. You were born into a society which spelled out with brutal clarity and in as many ways as possible that you were a worthless human being. You were not expected to aspire to excellence. You were expected to make peace with mediocrity.”

Certainly, this 2nd class citizenship continues today in a climate more rife with racial antagonisms than ever before. Besides racial hatreds that have persisted, albeit in perhaps more covert and hidden forms, what has changed since the Civil Rights era in black peoples’ relationship with the police? Well, for one thing, the police have become much more of a para-military force now and (thanks in large part to the Obama administration) have military-grade equipment and a wide assortment of so-called non-lethal weapons that they can use on violent or peaceful protestors, as you can see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ut3xsdkIWhg

As you’re no doubt aware, immediately following the Darren Wilson (no indictment verdict)…the mostly black suburb of Ferguson, Missouri outside of St. Louis went up in flames with mass looting, shooting, and destruction of businesses and government buildings. However, the black teenager, Michael Brown, wasn’t exactly a poster child for good black citizenry. In fact, all indications showed him to be an amoral thug, who was even caught on video camera shortly before he was shot robbing a convenience store and pushing the clerk out of the way when he attempted to stop him. Later, he was reportedly walking down the middle of the street preventing traffic from moving when Wilson told him to get out of the street. Brown shouted an obscenity at the officer, and that’s when Wilson attempted to apprehend Brown. This is where accounts get fuzzy as to what occurred next. Some eye witnesses say that Michael Brown had his hands up in the air and was trying to get away when Wilson shot him. However, according to Darren Wilson’s account that apparently the grand jury agreed with, the much heavier Michael Brown attacked Wilson and tried to reach for his gun at which point Darren Wilson defended himself in the only way he believed he could and escape with his life…namely by taking Brown’s life.

Of course, arguments will naturally arise as to whether or not lethal force was even necessary at all. In other words, why couldn’t Wilson have shot him in the leg or something? Or, why didn’t he use his taser or pepper spray? Since I wasn’t there, and there isn’t any video of the encounter…we’ll likely never know for sure the details as to what really took place. However, the truth (more often than not) probably falls somewhere in the middle. What is pretty certain at this stage is that Michael Brown was a typical “thug” teenager, who like most have a sense of entitlement and like many of those in Ferguson will use any excuse to loot out of opportunism without really posing any threat to the establishment itself.

This is in sharp contrast to the Afro-Centric radicalism and departure from the white establishment that groups like the Black Panther Party represented. I was fortunate enough to meet one of the co-founders of the original Black Panther Party that started in Oakland, CA as a way to combat rampant police abuse, repression, and occupation of black neighborhoods…Mr. Bobby Seale. Along with Huey Newton, Bobby and Eldridge Cleaver’s genesis for the Black Panther Party grew out of a growing frustration among the black community to be unable to use the legal system in obtaining justice from wanton police harassment, arrest, and brutality largely just being black. Bobby Seale gave the keynote address at the “2nd Annual Police Accountability Summit” here in Austin, TX that I attended, which you can see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oRPi0UBNV-M

Black Panther Party

The Black Panther Party wasn’t just for self-defense, however, but taught black empowerment, opened up their own school to teach young black children, and even had a couple of businesses that they ran to profit the community. Again, their focus wasn’t simply on hating all white people as the New Black Panthers seem to only care about but rather to elevate the black people of their community beyond their ghetto circumstances and give them a sense of pride based on imparted self-worth and actual accomplishment. Before he was assassinated, Malcolm X also tried to point out the ways in which white society had corrupted the minds of black people into believing themselves to be inferior as you can see in this clip entitled “Who Taught You to Hate Yourself?”. Unfortunately, J. Edgar Hoover launched a fierce campaign of violence and subversion against the Black Panther Party as part of the Cointel Program to neutralize what the Feds saw as threats to the American (that is to say rich white people) way of life.

COINTEL PRO Beware My Friends

Once the Black Panther Party and other Afro-Centric and militant black groups like MOVE were systematically destroyed, a new image began to emerge that is now so perverted, so vile, so thuggish, and so just plain stupid as to be diametrically opposed to everything Dr. Martin Luther King and Malcolm X fought and were assassinated for, namely to free black people not merely from the shackles of segregation (King) and mental slavery (Malcolm) but to empower them to stand as equals among the fellowship of men and women. This is why the welfare state is so insidious to a poor black family given that it represents a new kind of slavery and servitude born out of an inability and unwillingness to raise family through gainful employment while at the same time keeping themselves tied like a baby’s umbilical cord to their new master, Uncle Sam. Much of this infantalism is now displayed with no sense of shame for all the world to see in way that previous generations would have openly mocked.

Chris Rock’s signature comedic bit seen in his HBO Special “Bring the Pain” was called “Black People vs. Niggas”. He explicates the problem quite well and humorously in this fantastic bit, since as a black man himself and a comic he’s poised to be able to speak frankly about race in a way that hardly anyone else in the limelight can. Prior to him, Richard Pryor used classic comedic bits to elucidate race in way that opened up a greater dialogue and showed how comedy alone can break down racial barriers once thought rigid. For Pryor, the word “nigger” was simply apart of the language of the black vernacular in the places he grew up in along with being an easy comedic device to generating laughs in his act. It wasn’t until he had the chance to visit Africa for the first time that his eyes and mind were opened up to seeing the use of the word “nigger” as not merely an affectionate term when used by your black friends and racist when used by white people but rather as something that black people themselves denigrate themselves with absent any white people, since it really signifies someone who is ignorant. It was a turning point in Pryor’s life for him to come to this insight, which he shared with an audience during his “Live on the Sunset Strip” performance. One of the most insightful and brilliant creations that I’ve ever seen that commented on this crisis within the American black populace to celebrate “niggerdom” (i.e. idiocy and infantile lunacy) was shown on an animated TV show called “Boondocks” in an episode that depicted what might happen were Dr. Martin Luther King to return from the dead to the modern world. Needless to say, he is thoroughly disgusted by what black people have become in the ensuing years since the Civil Rights era of the late 60s and in a moment of outrage at what he sees he speaks his mind at a party held on his behalf. The name of the episode is entitled “Return of the King”.

American History X Smoking

So, the question is, how did black people go from Richard Pryor to Tyler Perry? Or, from Marvin Gaye to Kanye West? Or, worse still Lil’ John? Black people have always been musical innovators from the early pioneers of Rock N’ Roll with Chuck Berry and Little Richard to the Soul Music of James Brown and Aretha Franklin to the great Blues musicians of Muddy Waters, B.B. King, and Robert Johnson…American music has always been filled with great black musicians. Now, it’s so-called hip-hop and rap that dominate the airwaves and what most black people listen to. However, the rap of today is a far cry from the early pioneers of rap that came to the fore in the late 70s and early 80s. Rappers like Grand Master Flash, RUN-DMC, and the Sugar Hill Gang were mixing funk and rock riffs and beats to lyrics that spoke to traditional themes of ghetto hardships, black empowerment, or simply having a good time spitting rhymes. Now, it’s dominated by thug posers like 50 Cent, big ass whores like Nikki Minaj, moronic hood rats like Lil’ John, and greed-obsessed exhibitionists like Jay-Z. This can’t be the best that black musicians have to offer, can’t it?

Professor Griff of Public Enemy would say that it is nothing short of conspiracy in order to lead the black man astray down the path of self-imposed ignorance, degradation, exploitation, and ultimately ruin in attempting to live out the opulent and extravagant fantasies show in rap videos these days. And, I’m inclined to believe that there’s probably some truth to that along with most of the stupid music industry following whatever moronic trend that’s going on at the time. One could certainly make the case for gangsta rap having started the trend back in the 80s, especially once the crack cocaine epidemic hit Los Angeles. Anyone wanting to know how crack was introduced into neighborhoods like Compton should read former San Jose Mercury News reporter Gary Webb’s work, who shows how it was a CIA operation was part of the war with the Sandinista rebels in Nicaragua to funnel cocaine into this country and guns into Central America. So, we can trace at least the crack explosion to the CIA. But, what about the music industry? One way to follow the narrative would be to look at what happens when rappers like Tupac, who’s mother was a member of the Black Panther Party, attempts to shed light on the suppression and oppression of black people. He’s killed on the Las Vegas strip, and nobody is indicted for his murder? Or, how about the career of the sublimely beautiful Lauren Hill? Granted, she was chastised for taking the time to raise her son, but then she came to realize that she didn’t want any part of what she had correctly deemed as a wicked and corrupt industry along with much of the rest of the world as you can see her discuss in this revelatory Def Poetry recital.

So, we’ve come full circle now. From the LA riots after the Rodney King verdict in 1992 to the riots in Ferguson after the “no indictment” of Darren Wilson, expressions of rage against the police (whether justified or not) certainly shouldn’t be directed against businesses in your own community, where even black owned businesses were trashed. They should be directed against the police, their headquarters, and other government officials like the mayor, chief of police, and state representatives that you believe are oppressing your people. After all, it’s people like the governor that are bringing in the national guard against you not the corner liquor store owner. Besides, do you really want to be shot for stealing a pair of Nike sneakers or a bottle of Johnny Walker Black? Killed for mindless consumerism? To be a revolutionary means not accepting how the established order defines you, and what could be more status quo than keeping people identifying themselves as “consumers” of products made by Third World wage slaves many of whom are black? Liberation politics means a revolution of ideas, and the idea that I am proposing (which as a white guy I realize isn’t PC to propose but I’m doing it anyway) is that black people adopt some revolutionary ideas for someone in your impoverished condition.

That is- “Empower yourself by educating yourself (read to your kids), black men start actually raising your children as fathers and supporting the family you helped create, get off welfare completely, stop blaming white people for all of your problems as most of them are your own creation, learn to start your own businesses and manage your own money (there’s more to finance than shiny rims after all), understand how to be civil and honorable, take pride in your accomplishments instead of having an attitude of entitlement (you don’t deserve reparations because you were never a slave), and stop glorifying and celebrating the most depraved, ego-centric, and criminal aspects of a corrupted corporate culture.” Once you do that, you can now begin the long struggle back up to the top of that fabled mountaintop that Dr. King talked about and certainly didn’t end with an Uncle Tom getting into the White House. I’ll end with the man Ossie Davis rightly described as “our shining black prince”, Mr. Malcolm X speaking about why black people shouldn’t trust the house negro, many of whom you’ll see in the US government. I can certainly think of a few…can you?

Malcolm X Be Peaceful Unless Someone Puts His Hands on You


Lessons from the Dead on the Art of Living and the Emptiness of Celebrity

Robin Williams Alone and Gone

 

In my last post, I wrote about my dearly departed dad and his quest (some would say undying faith) in the “spiritual” realm and its universal truths that was, perhaps, largely elusive during his incarnate life but now largely answerable in death. Unfortunately, once you cross death’s door and enter the great beyond, you’re access to the physically living is barred save a haunting here and there. And yet, strange at it may seem, the dead continue to whisper to us from beyond the grave through fleeting glimpses of their lasting memory, their remaining possessions, their photographs, their writings, and their surviving friends and family, who recount stories about their life. Certainly, this has been my experience with my own father, whose incessant hoarding provided an endless stream of artifacts, paperwork, and reminders of his passions, his business failures, his spiritual leanings, and odd possessions themselves (alternative medical devices from the 60s and 70s being one such example) that stood out as a stark reminder of the enigmatic and paradoxical nature of the man himself along with volumes of trash and debris itself that overwhelms the senses with a kind of psychic burden and looming baggage for which only death could absolve.

And so, the question remains like a dagger sticking in my head- “What, if anything, can we learn from the dead?” For one thing, we can learn how to appreciate life more. While it sounds cliche and trite, any soldier that has seen combat will tell you just how much greater appreciation they have for life after they’ve stared into the cold, expressionless faces of the newly killed. It reminds me of the scene from the movie Fight Club when the character played by Brad Pitt puts a gun to the back of a store clerk’s head and demands that he become what he originally wanted to be in life lest he shoot him. When Edward Norton asks- “What the fuck was the point of that?!” He replies, “Tomorrow that man will have the most beautiful day of his life. His breakfast will taste better than any breakfast we have ever known.” And, it’s precisely because the previous night, he thought he was going to be shot in the back of the skull by some deranged maniac in the parking lot of the convenience store he worked at just to “get by and pay the bills” and forgo his dreams of becoming a veterinarian. But now, he was given a new lease on life and a stern commandment- “Follow your dreams and true desires or die!” Just picture Tyler Derden as the Grim Reaper, and you’ll get the general idea.

How many of us have to face our own death before we can begin to live life? Perhaps, we all have to experience a little hell before we can appreciate a little heaven. Or perhaps, we’re all just a bit insane and stupid in that we’ve constructed a civilization that is so divorced from a humane world that we’ve forgotten how to be truly human anymore, at least insofar as the original meaning of the word “Hu” (God) “man”. Would a God-realized man put himself through the torture of a drudgery-filled job, surrounded by the empty spectacle of vacuous consumptions of corporate-driven commodities, and pursuing the greedy and materialistic false desires of a banal culture or to fulfill the whims of loveless relationships? Of course NOT! We’re so far removed from the natural world of real survival-based needs that we can’t distinguish between needs and desires, between biologically-ingrained instincts and conditioned reflexes, between our own idiosyncratic selves and the manufactured subterfuge media-enforced imagery that we adopt as our own. We’re psychically crippled and fragmented creatures as a result of the constant bombardment media and the demands of corporate America that assault our senses with the constant refrain- “Work, work, work…so you can earn, earn, earn more money, more money, more money…so you can buy, buy, buy, buy more stuff, more stuff, more stuff that you will have to work, work, work for.” It’s a never ending cycle of monotonous labor that turns Hu(God)mans into Slaves on the Job and Zombies off the Job.

None of the bullshit sold to us through Madison Avenue’s slick campaigns, particularly through their exemplars of the “Good Life” being celebrities, ever leads to lasting happiness. Ask Philip Seymour Hoffman about the “Good Life”. Or, better yet, ask Robin Williams about it. Was there anyone in the Hollywood limelight more seemingly full of childlike joy, exuberance, and humor than Robin Williams? And yet, for all the beauty, light, and spontaneity of this wonderful and gracious man…he succumbed to the inner demons of addiction, isolation, and despair. I can hear people thinking aloud, “Yeah, but he was wealthy, famous, and adored by millions of people around the world. Isn’t this the epitome of success? How could he ever reach the point of utter despair that he would commit suicide? It doesn’t make any sense.” It doesn’t make any sense only if you measure success, let alone happiness by the rubric of the mainstream media. However, make no mistake, Hollywood is known as the land of Illusion for a reason, just as peoples’ lives are shredded like tinsel on the Sunset Strip.

Do you think just because you have a star on the boardwalk…you aren’t going to get stepped on? Perhaps, more to the point, celebrity is strange kind of hell wherein suddenly what you do, who you’re with, what you say, where you go, and even how you dress becomes fodder for the gossiping, judgmental, and obsessive public. Fame seen in this unforgiving light can be quite oppressive indeed and might begin to explain why a genius like Stanley Kubrick avoided it like the plague or why Dave Chappelle walked away from $50 million and the 3rd season of “Chappelle Show”. He also understood how the image of who he was far superseded the flesh and blood man that he was and how Hollywood had a particularly sinister agenda for leading black actors as he related on the Oprah Winfrey Show at one point. It’s still hard to fathom how a man as seemingly loved as Robin Williams was could sink so low as he did. But, it only goes to show just how little the average person knows as to what really goes on behind the scenes in their favorite celebrities’ lives…try as they might to discover them in the tabloids. We see what we want to see or rather the smiling faces staring back at us from the front covers of People, Parade, Vanity Fair, GQ and Cosmopolitan. They all speak to the same over-riding and ubiquitous lie of modern life, namely that SUCCESS=WEALTH, FAME, BEAUTY, POPULAR TALENT. However, where is the soul in all of this? Or, for those of you who are atheists and secular humanists, where is the depth of character? By character, I don’t mean what new Marvel character they’re playing in the movies but rather strength and integrity of their inner self (psyche, mental clarity, emotional maturity, physical health, moral compass, etc.). At no point in the obsessions of Maxim Magazine, TMZ, or the National Inquirer is there any discussion of these aspects of a celebrity except in the most passing superficial way and hence both the public and celebrity are treated to another nauseating dose of ego-tripping clap trap that further erodes our sense of self as well as that of our heroes, who are eventually seen as the mere puppets of giant media corporations consciously or not.

The dead see past all pretensions of ego inflation and vanity, however. Your ultimate worth as a human being is seen, at least in this context, as a question of good selfless deeds in the service of others rather than the selfish deeds done in the furtherance of one’s career or status. Robin Williams was one of those uniquely gifted entertainers whose generosity of spirit was a great as his comedic talent and one of the main reasons why he will be missed by so many people, who knew him personally as well as on the screen. After all, even an actor can’t hide everything he/she is behind a role they’re playing. Part of their personality is bound to come out no matter how much of a chameleon they might be, particularly in roles that they’re often best known for. In Robin Williams’ case, this was even more true given that he showed both his comedic genius in movies like Good Morning Vietnam, Mrs. Doubtfire, and Aladdin. And, he showed a great deal of empathic pathos in movies like Dead Poets Society, What Dreams May Come, and Good Will Hunting.

The great irony, however, about comedy is that some of the best comedians and comedy comes from the grist of tragedy. Certainly, this was the case with Richard Pryor, who was a longtime cocaine addict along with Robin Williams. Don’t forget that Robin even worked with Richard on his very short-lived “The Richard Pryor Show”, which I highly recommend checking out as you can on DVD. Richard Pryor was described by his writing partner, Paul Mooney, as being a lot like a child, which you can clearly see in some of his standup. This was also certainly true of Robin Williams, particularly in movies like Jack and Hook. The imagination of the child, innocent, free, and vivid is contrasted against the rigid rules of civilization as an undercurrent or subtext in many of Robin Williams’ movies, and you get the impression that this was not by accident. He identified with the blissful and carefree child in many regards and was one of the very few public figures, who could tap into that stream of childlike consciousness instantly. For adults, this can be quite dangerous given how stodgy and pretentious most people tend to be in these PC days, but they should all learn to love, laugh, and live more like the children they once were before they end up the bitter, miserable, and dying old farts they will eventually become.

 

 

 


On My Recently Departed Dad, Truth, Struggle, and the Search for the Sublime…

Ghandi No God Higher Than Truth

“May you get to heaven before a word is said, and make your peace with God before the Devil knows you’re dead.” -Old Irish Prayer

 

It’s been over 3 months since I’ve written anything on this blog and while you could attribute some of this to sheer laziness…the truth is, “I simply haven’t found much time lately.” The reason for this very long delay is because shortly after my last post my father died unexpectedly just shy of turning 80. His death came as a shock because I wasn’t even informed of his hospitalization, which I later learned was for at least 3 weeks. Apparently, he didn’t want to tell either my brother nor I about it, and so I didn’t learn about it until he had already passed on. I believe that he was embarrassed to have either of us see him in such a crippled and invalid state as the last image we would have of him, especially since so much of his early life had been preoccupied with displays of youthful vigor.

After all, he would brag about being in the Golden Gloves and had some memorable amateur fights. He taught dance at Arthur Murray dance studio and was obsessive about his health even becoming a vegetarian back in the 50s, long before it was fashionable. So much of his identity was wrapped up in his Adonis-like appearance that creeping finger of old age robbed him of more than his strength and vitality…it cannibalized his spirit until there was nothing left but a shell of his former self left. However, it wasn’t just old age that did this (which one could argue in our youth-obsessed culture robs most people of their spirit if not their identity). He was always just barely hanging on to financial long-shots, embittered by business deals gone awry, partnerships gone sour, and opportunities lost as if in some cruel twist of fate that was his burden to bear like the trials of Job. It was if his life were the living embodiment of Murphy’s Law (i.e. Whatever Can Go Wrong, Will Go Wrong). He never seemed to have a firm grasp on reality, which is why he so loved to escape into his “far out” books.

If he couldn’t master the tangible universe, then he was hellbent on mastering the intangible, the invisible, the spiritual one. How does one achieve mastery over something so ethereal and elusive? For my dad, this involved a lifetime’s worth of searching for what were deemed “spiritual” or “transcendent” truths, which found their apogee in the Indian mysticism of Sant Mat. This particular path has a lineage of gurus, who by all accounts are quite spiritually evolved and teach union with the divine through meditation on what is called “the sound current” or “Nam”. It believes in living an ethically pure life, of course, abstaining from alcohol, meat, drugs, and pre-marital sex.

Oddly enough, this last abstention is congruent with (in theory) much of Christian thought. In fact, what’s particularly interesting about this predominantly Indian-oriented form of mysticism is that it accommodates what you might describe as Gnostic forms of Christianity into its philosophy, which can cause a radical psychic schism to develop in the psyche if not navigated successfully. Given the rather obvious ways that contradictions, hypocrisies, and inner conflicts appeared throughout my father’s life- I would have to say that he was largely unsuccessful in navigating those perilous psychic waters with the most evident being that he was, for the most part, not a well contented man let alone spiritually enlightened enough to be in a blissful state of consciousness. As Nietzsche would say, “He was human, all too human.”

And by human…I mean flawed, emotional, habitual, accident prone, short-sighted, reflexive, and given to repeat the same stories and mistakes throughout his entire life. And, boy did he love to tell a lot stories, long-winded, fantastical, seemingly meaningless, but always with a sense that he was conveying something profound. Listening to stories about UFOs, his American Graffiti-like adolescence, his rocky marriage to my mom, transcendental readings through psychic mediums, meeting remarkable or otherwise famous individuals, and endless stories about his master, Charan Singh, along with the basic philosophy and mythology of Sant Mat was (given the numerous times my pop would repeat the same story over and over again though at seemingly widely varying intervals) both fascinating and exhausting at the same time. The weirder, the better, the more outlandish and fantastical, the more he loved it. Proof be damned! Truth is stranger than fiction, and my dad had no time for fiction…or so he would tell you.

However, his truth was so “out of this world”, for most people grounded in the banalities of everyday life, I’m sure he appeared as just another nutty snake oil salesman of para-normal and mystical stories the veracity of which were always in question. So, I was both bemused and befuddled by them, since I’m known to have an attraction to the mysterious but more prone to use Occam’s Razor. My pop, on the other hand, never let investigatory facts or common sense answers get in the way of his metaphysical yarns, though. It was almost comical how emphatic he would be on subjects that he had absolutely no professional training or background in nor even take the time to thoroughly research adequately. Still, for all his flaws, he was at bottom a kind man, a generous man, and (in his own way) a reflective man, who was driven by his insatiable curiosity to know and dwell in universal truth but failed to recognize the truth in imperfection and how truth is lived subjectively in those that remain true to their individuated uniqueness rather than always stifling it among the homogenous masses.

Truth is the force that gives life meaning, and it can and does take a multitude of forms, expressions, rhythms, and embodiments within the strata of life. For me, it means thinking, feeling, speaking, and acting out of the greatest aspect of my humanity and higher self. It means living in the fullest expression of my own unique contribution to this mad play called life without lying to myself or others. It means giving respect but taking no shit. Sometimes I fall short, but the moments when I rise to the occasion are without a doubt the greatest moments. These moments need not be filled with action, since there times when non-action is just as truthful as action. It takes discernment to know what is called for, though.

Back to my pop, I always felt that he was conflicted within himself, and it was difficult to discern why. Like many of his generation, the idea of speaking about your feelings was considered too feminine. So, much of his heartbreaks, disappointments, turmoils, fears, vulnerabilities, and inadequacies remained hidden (or at least not typically discussed with me). Women are much more open about these things, obviously, to their trusted confidants and this is probably why they live on average a couple of years longer than men. It isn’t that you should whine or complain about petty bullshit, quite the contrary. However, neither should you think that keeping all your emotions bundled up inside until one day they explode in a violent rage or self-destructive act is good for your disposition.

There’s a reason why women talk things out. They’re not necessarily expecting to get a solution to the problem that may or may not be solved. But, they’ll talk things out nonetheless because it helps to get things off your chest whether or not people want to take action or not. The best I can determine, in my dad’s case, is that there was an inner schism within the deeper recesses of his unconscious mind, which I believe was at root based on the dichotomy he placed between his animal instincts and his spiritual aspirations. This is especially pronounced within monotheistic religions such as Islam, Judaism, and Christianity.

It goes all the way back to the real fall from grace, the alienation of man from the natural environment through agriculture and domestication of animals. Prior to this happening some 12,000 years ago, man lived in a harmonious symbiotic accord with nature as a hunter-gatherer. His spirituality was intimately tied up and dependent on his organismic and psychic connection with Mother Earth. However, the domestication of plants, animals, and eventually people themselves caused this cosmic unity to become fragmented and replaced by the beginnings of monotheistic religion through the ancient solar cults. Nature was no longer the repository of our spirits, our ancestors, our nourishment of both body and mind. It was, thanks to this alien philosophy, now considered corrupt, lower, and in need of control and domination through what eventually became the age of machines and technology. Civilization wrecked havoc on the indigenous world where tribal peoples still adhered to the old ways of natural communion and living in harmony with the Earth rather than viewing the planet as something to be conquered and exploited for material gain.

Needless to say, the Western spiritual tradition shifted away from nature-centric paganism and took on the predatory militarism of monotheism, which created a dualistic split between the carnal earth thought to be corrupt and the lofty airy pure spirit thought to reside in the afterlife. And, it was this schism between his carnal instincts such as to fight or fuck and his spiritual aspirations of meditation in seeking union with the divine that drove my dad to the point of despair and ruin, since he ultimately knew that he couldn’t escape these inborn and ingrained attitudes and behaviors attributed to his lower/animal self. How might he atone, therefore? Punishment or karma was due, in his mind to atone for these transgressions. And, as a result, he bore his pain both with a heavy but also somewhat masochistic heart in that (in his mind) he was working off the karma of falling short of his higher spiritual self…of not being free of his creature-liness as it were.

What if there isn’t such a hard and fast dividing line between matter and spirit, Earth and Heaven, tangible and intangible, Animal and Man, or even Man and God? What if we exist on a continuum of the gradual increasing of qualitative spiritual awareness relative to our animal friends and need not give up earthly pleasure to attain eternal life, since we are eternal? Is God’s love so possessive that he would have us give up the simple pleasures of life in order to seek the kingdom exclusively? Or, is the kingdom within as Christ said, and we can be still be stewards of the Earth at the same time as being rays of the divine invisible sun?

I began this blog by paraphrasing what I think is an old Irish prayer, which I got from the last Sydney Lumet movie “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead“. Go watch this movie, if you haven’t already. It’s a brilliantly constructed movie about a jewelry store robbery gone horribly awry and the toll that it takes on two brothers, who learn that the love of money tears families apart. The older brother is played magnificently by the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, who also carried a larger inner burden than he usually let on about. Most people in our celebrity and fame-obsessed society can’t fathom someone as famous and successful as Hoffman being depressed and dying from a heroin overdose. Huge success, fame, and certainly wealth come with the very heavy expectations of the world of maintaining it, and the stresses that this false idolatry and adulation brings are often greater than one man, one man with inner demons and doubts can withstand.  Interestingly enough, he’s a heroin addict in the movie as well. Not to spoil it for you, but there’s a great scene where the father of the two boys discovers a dark secret about his own son with an old Jewish jewelry dealer, who tells him- “The world is an evil place. Some people make money from it, and others are destroyed by it.” The world, the fabricated artificial world of our greedy and corrupt civilization, is indeed an evil place. And, my father didn’t make money from this fact but was in the end destroyed by it. However, it doesn’t have to be like this. After all, the Earth (for all its dangers and perils) is basically a hospitable and good place for this life, in this incarnation, and in this body. And, the world need not be evil, since the world is going to be whatever we make of it.

 

RIP

Bob Matthews

Bob Matthews (November 10th, 1934 – June 29th, 2014)

 


Stanley Kubrick’s Genius, “Eyes Wide Shut”, and his Artistic Legacy 15 Years After his Death

Imagination of Stanley Kubrick

For me, today is an auspicious and important anniversary. That is because today (March 7th, 2014) marks the 15 year anniversary of the tragic and mysterious death of the man that many consider to be the greatest film director ever (myself included), Stanley Kubrick, who died on March 7th, 1999. Given what an enormous artistic influence Kubrick has been on me and the countless others that admire and respect his work, I felt compelled to write a few words in commemoration and in memory of his superb body of work and of the man himself, whom even the legendary Orson Wells once quipped- “has always appeared as some kind of giant to me.”

The $64,000 question that I suppose those for whom Kubrick has remained either a puzzling enigma or simply just another director might very well ask, “Just what was it that made Stanley Kubrick so unique in the annals of filmmakers?” Were I to have to give a short declarative answer to what is sure to be a much more complex answer, I would have to say that (for me), “Kubrick was unique precisely because he was a purist and perfectionist of the movie medium, for whom film was not merely a commercial commodity for Hollywood escapism so much as an art form in its own right…collaborative, to be sure, in the sense that all the elements had to come together under the exacting eye of the director whose aesthetic vision must predominate.” Ultimately, it is (or rather should be) the director of a picture that has final cut, and for it to have integrity and/or unadulterated merit as a work of art should not be meddled with by producers, third-party hatchet re-writes, test audiences, or the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). And, for the most part, Stanley Kubrick maintained a rather unique relationship with Warner Brothers, wherein his films weren’t unnecessarily meddled with, particularly after his arguments with Kurt Douglas in the shooting of “Spartacus”. This is why in practically every film that followed…Stanley Kubrick was able to direct, shoot, write, and edit films his way more or less.

Clearly, “Lolita” posed some problems for him with the MPAA, in terms of how much he could show audiences in the early 60s, which were more restrictive sexually than they are today especially as it was in the Vladimir Nabokov novel. You can learn more about Nabokov’s thinking with regards to his controversial masterpiece, Lolita, by reading the Playboy interview he had with Alvin Toffler. However, certainly by 1971 and the release of the ultra-violent subversive movie, “A Clockwork Orange”, these earlier strictures had given way to the more libertine experimental artistry of the 70s and what I consider the true “Golden Age” of cinema with the freedom afforded by studios such as United Artists, which allowed the filmmaker far greater leeway in making movies his/her way prior to the blockbuster gold rush that began with Spielberg’s “Jaws” and Lucas’ “Star Wars” two years later in 1977.

Clockwork Shadows

In analyzing the Kubrick mystique, we can see that is wasn’t necessarily the subject matter that he chose (that while variable would inevitably touch upon similar themes of existential alienation, Murphy’s Law like contingencies, and dehumanization such as that brought about by control and war as depicted in “Full Metal Jacket”). What always stands out as the most dynamic characteristic of his oeuvre is the nature of his masterful cinematography technique. For the uninitiated, this technique will perhaps be unconscious, but it is there nonetheless guiding the eye shot by shot in every mise-en-scene. It is there in the long tracking shot through the trenches of WWI in “Paths of Glory”, in the perfect symmetry of the enigmatic black monolith in “2001”, in the dynamic steadi-cam work following Danny on his trike as he rides through the labyrinth-like hallways of the Overlook Hotel in “The Shining”. So much of Kubrick’s choices in cinematography and skillful use of sound compel the viewer into rapturous attention and (on occasion) into a dreamy trance-like state due the languid, decadent, and richly-hued color palate that Stanley Kubrick uses in his pictures.

Kubrick's Odyssey Part 2

This was particularly evident in his last movie, “Eyes Wide Shut”. It is this swan song of Kubrick’s that I would like to focus on in particular, since it is my belief that Stanley was releasing certain key aspects of the power elite (primarily in the scenes involving a sinister secret society) that got him into very hot water with the same. This has been speculated about on certain websites like Vigilant Citizen, and in order to have a proper understanding of just what is taking place…a working and cogent knowledge of occult ritual, symbolism, mind-control, music, history, and human psychology are all going to be exercised. So, given that this is merely a ode to the memory of Stanley Kubrick, I won’t delve into the entirety of my symbolic and theoretical analysis of this film but rather mention but a few elements that will point towards just how deep this rabbit hole goes.

EWS Official Movie Poster

First, let’s consider the names. “Eyes Wide Shut” is based on the novella Traumnovelle and deals with the inherent artifice and falsity of marriage and a sexual odyssey of sorts that results from an admission of sexual desire by the woman played by Nicole Kidman in the movie. However, the title makes no logical sense were one to stop with this nominal plot outline and appears as a kind of linguistic paradox. You want to complete the phrase “eyes wide open”, but if they’re open…how can they also be shut? Again, Kubrick is employing paradox, not simply as trickery or in the Zen sense but, to inform the audience as the proceedings that follow, insofar as they will “look” at the sumptuousness of the movie (especially with regards to the explicit sexuality), but they will not “see” beyond this to the heart of what is actually being relayed about the thin veneer of civilization’s masks that people wear in so-called polite society behind which lurks the raw pursuit of greed, power, and lust. The Hartfords are being initiated.

Bill Being Led to Where the Rainbow Ends

This is my take on it, and I’m not presumptuous enough to think that my word is final or even wholly correct. However, I merely suggest it as something to consider, particularly when you watch the Red Cloak character confront Bill Hartford at the Somerton mansion. Now, look at the characters, and you’ll see that the almost caricature nature of their persona is by design in order to act as symbolic stand-ins for what Kubrick intents to say about the falsity and pathology of consumer society in using a young, beautiful, “well-to-do” couple living on the Upper West Side of New York City. Clearly, Nicole Kidman’s character, Alice Hartford, is the more complex and sexually honest of the two, and that is why she is named “Alice” as in the Lewis Carrol heroine Alice in Wonderland. She’s the one that will lead her husband, played by Tom Cruise, out of his rigid, patriarchal normalcy and stodgy bourgeoisie lifestyle and into one that must, by necessity if their marriage is to survive, become more thoughtful and self-examined. In the “Eyes Wide Shut” special features section on the DVD, you can watch Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, and Steven Spielberg speak about their memory of Stanley Kubrick. Tom Cruise comes off as fairly self-absorbed (as he usually does), Spielberg is naturally very complimentary but rather boring, and Nicole Kidman (to her credit) is the only one that shows what I would characterize as real genuflection and heart-felt emotion for the loss of Stanley Kubrick, who had become something of a father figure for Kidman. This will perhaps become important in a future article but for now, take note.

Bill Hartford is the one whose eyes are “shut” to the sexual fantasies of his beautiful wife’s inner psychic depths as well as to the covert and dark power that lies behind the wealthy clientele of this rather boorish doctor’s house calls to Eastern Establishment aristocracy men like Ziegler. Incidentally, Ziegler (played by the late Sydney Pollack) means “Mason”. Could Kubrick have used this character as a leitmotif in order to depict the dangers of Freemasonry? In the case of the Bill Hartford character, he is totally materially-oriented and uses the power of his wallet to impress upon others his “status” as a doctor to open doors at every turn and pay the “Bill”. However, for all his money and success, his wealth is but a pauper’s pittance compared the opulence of the super elite that he comes into contact with at the private masked orgy. Again, symbolism is predominate throughout, and he ends up fearing for his life (and that of his family’s), when he tries to pursue his nocturnal discoveries the following day.

Caricature in Triplicate

Kubrick, as always, gives no easy answers as to what it all means. What exactly happened to the girl that stepped in to “redeem” him? Why is the costume shop owner pimping his daughter out to cross-dressing Japanese men after having acted so outraged at catching them initially? And, just who (as Ziegler puts it) are these “not just ordinary people”? All is left for the audience to attempt to decipher for themselves, as it ought to have to, in order to finally open their eyes to what is really taking place. Also, there are questions concerning the final film not yet being completed. Given that Kubrick showed a “work in progress” to Warner Bros. execs 4 days before his death and was still editing the film when he died, we can be fairly certain that the movie wasn’t completely finished, and (unfortunately) we’ll never know what the completed film would look like. We do know that the MPAA apparently forced Warner Bros. to install CGI people into the orgy sequence in order to garner an R rating, which is an obvious desecration to the film that was released without the CGI tampering for the European market.

Usually, you go into a movie with preconceived biases, expectations, and the barest attention needed to see everything you need to with the typical formulaic Hollywood fare. They’re usually at least somewhat entertaining, perhaps comfortingly sentimental, and fairly predictable, with the mind getting no more of a workout than if you were playing checkers. Contrast that with a Stanley Kubrick film, where you are confronted by a master film craftsman, a multi-layered storyline with often unsympathetic characters, and a gorgeously-composed film that nonetheless sometimes utilizes an unnerving use of color, sound, and camera work and hides more than one can perceive upon a first, second, third, and maybe even fourth glance. That is surely the lasting legacy and testament of Kubrick’s idiosyncratic style, wherein you go in thinking checkers and end up having to play 3-D chess.

Kubrick Face at Time of Death


The Hidden Functions of Schooling and a Population Engineered for Obedience

Ivan Illich What School Is

The avenues whereby man may elevate his consciousness to, as Rene Decartes would say, “Know Thyself” as something truly unique in the world and apply himself, diligently, patiently, honestly in the pursuit of greater happiness and service to his community, his tribe, his nation, his race of fellow human beings is a noble pursuit to be sure. And, I have no problem with that function, if you will, of education. I do have a very big problem with the the insidious institution of modern public schooling, though. Besides the fact that the US public school system is an utter and complete failure, in every imaginable way and standard of measurement, nobody ever seems to ask whether or not the abject failure that every new teaching program, standardized testing regimen, and methodology imposed by government bureaucrats instituted is actually meant to fail, since the true function and purpose of public schooling hasn’t been discerned by the greater part of the population of this country. Is it really complete heresy to suggest that whatever the government sets up…it gets, or else it wouldn’t continue with it?

I’m not even talking about the notion of academic failure, although the US is known to rank towards the bottom or a mediocre middle of the industrialized world in nearly every conceivable category. What I’m referring to is really a failure of imagination, both our own as adults and the crippling of our children’s innate imagination to envision an idyllic and magical world where their parents see only money, duties, and the desire to control every aspect of their kids’ behavior. However, as ignorant and inhumane as many parents are in the US, they at least love their children even if they don’t always show it. And, while their methods are often faulty, conditioned, and laden with neurotic baggage, one could argue that their heart is in the right place. They want what is best for the kids in life or at least what they think is best.

School administrators, psychiatrists, and teachers (on the other hand) have no such stakes in the futures of the children in their charge. It’s usually just a “job” for them. And, while many take on the roles of surrogate mommies and daddies during school hours, they don’t have the time to compensate for what’s lacking at home, and at best they’re merely glorified baby sitters. Most Americans are so totally clueless about what is being done, it would be comical almost, if it didn’t involve so many millions of lives being mentally impaired. That’s what former New City and New York State “Teacher of the Year” several years running said about the function of public schooling. I’m speaking of course of the illustrious and quite erudite former teacher turned author/speaker/activist against schooling, John Taylor Gatto. He makes the case that the function of public schooling is to “reduce children’s capacity to think”. Other functions of “schooling” include prolonging adolescence (even the term itself didn’t exist prior to the advent of compulsory schools) as well as the “adaptive” principle, whereby the mind and behavior of the child is molded to fit the designs of governmental/corporate/psychiatric interests. If you question this, by all means be sure to read John Taylor Gatto’s superb article that he penned for Harper’s Magazine several years ago that explains these functions far more eloquently than I have.

And, to accomplish these goals, schooling has introduced such Pavlovian measures as the “bell system”, which breaks a child’s concentration in his/her studies in one class so they can be shuttled off to another one. No inter-disciplinary understanding takes place, naturally, between subjects that are even obviously linked such as History and Political Science. Questioning is reduced to a bare minimum, and the grading system creates an artificial and irrelevant barometer that is used in the stratification among good, mediocre, and bad students with all the idiotic stigmas that those “labels” imply. In essence, crucial elements in the full flowering and development of the child such as creativity, independent  discernment, higher-order thinking, multi-age cooperative learning, and the achievement of “real world” goals are screened out of the curriculum…assuming they were ever there to begin with. And, these are substituted with rote-memorization drills, multiple-choice testing, and the boring tedium of being forced to take notes based on ramblings of some dim-witted teacher giving a practically, socially, and philosophically-irrelevant lecture that will be largely forgotten about by the next day of class. As a general rule, the teacher’s college is usually the least rigorous and easiest academically of all of the departments and as such tends to both draw and produce the most boorish bunch of neurotic nitwits imaginable to “teach” your kids. Is it really any wonder that the US education system is in crisis?

How did it get to this obviously lowly status and point? As Gatto explains, the American version of the social engineering of minds in the public school system came into existence towards the middle part of the 19th century, when the country of, what was then, Prussia decided to regiment their society according to the Hegelian dictates of the state. Through a system of mandatory enrollment in state-run schools, Prussia would force previously free-thinking children to orient themselves to operate as an obedient, collective tool for the state. This would then preclude many in the population, who in adulthood might abandon the state when they fought another war, as they were often doing. So, Prussian schooling was really a psychological indoctrination program, whose purpose was to ensure plenty of cannon fodder for the state. And, it worked like a charm.

This in turn was the system that was praised, celebrated, and finally implemented in the US by pedagogs such as Horace Mann and John Dewey. By the early part of the 20th century, modern public schooling began to take shape, albeit with another function in mind. It was around this time that the Industrial Revolution was coming into full swing and the industrial corporate business class decided that public schools should become the breeding grounds for a new kind of man, who would be willing to give up simple agrarian life and commit himself to the repetitive tasks that industrial labor would impose upon the worker of the 20th century. School was to act as a coercive adjunct not merely of the state but also of the corporation, whose ascent has made it the dominant institution of the last 100 years.

State control isn’t necessarily mutually exclusive from corporate control. They’re merely different masks of authority and domination over an individual’s life, and what the state always seeks is to create a sense of general collectivization among its ranks just as a corporation desires for its low-level workers to collectivize themselves around the principle of obedience to the productive edicts of the corporation. They standardize, regiment, and homogenize experience just like an army might do only for different purposes…one for war and the efficient slaughter of foreign peoples and the other for the peaceful consumption of consumer goods. Therefore, is it really just a coincidence that “Universal Public Schooling” just so happens to be one of the planks of the Communist Manifesto? Now might be a good time to ask- “Was the US hijacked by a communist agenda?” This is a difficult question to answer definitively, but one could argue that while transnational corporate elites exert the traditional influence from behind the scenes in government as they always have…even so-called communist nations aren’t purely communist in the sense of everyone being equal in status and material goods. However, both capitalists and communists would agree that in order to maximize profits for corporate capitalists and fit individual cogs into the cold machinery of state bureaucracy, strict obedience of the masses is key. And, while the cop can always hold a bludgeon over the heads of the unrelenting, longevity depends on mass mind-control and propaganda, particularly of the youth that will inherit it all.

Certainly, one of the more interesting interviews in this regard ever conducted was an interview that G. Edward Griffin, author of the definitive history of the Federal Reserve The Creature from Jekyll Island, had with Norman Dodd right before he died. This interview is an important puzzle piece in the annals of history and is certainly germane to the history of American schooling. Norman Dodd was an investigator for an extensive congressional inquiry into the role and agenda of tax-exempt foundations. And, he was able to discover that one of the primary objectives of the Rockefeller Foundation was to spread the tenets of “collectivist doctrine” through the institutions of American life with a specific focus on controlling the curriculum of the public school system, so that the US could be turned into a collectivized psycho-civilized state. Foreign countries would be targeted using the Carnegie Endowment, which is named after the steel baron Andrew Carnegie. I encourage all of you that haven’t seen it to go watch the video to this excellent interview on YouTube. If you haven’t got to patience to watch the whole hour, however, I suggest you skip to the 28 min mark, where he talks about what I just did in relation to the control of the public school system. Certainly, if you do have kids, be a “smart” parent, pull them out of the public schools, and either home school them yourself or enroll them in a small alternative like Summerhill, where children actually get to choose what they want to learn and aren’t forced to learn what they couldn’t care less about and isn’t applicable to their lives.

Why You Have to Go to School


The Primacy of Honest Discourse and the Failure of the American Mind to See Beyond Itself

Aldous Huxley Propagandist Job

While there is no shortage of juicy para-political stories floating around in the digital netherworld of the worldwide web, I wasn’t exactly sure which one was calling out to written about the most. And, there wasn’t anything (in particular) that I was passionate about covering in the recent weeks since my last post. One could argue that my peculiar regard for conspiracies had reached a point, where the usual suspects aren’t nearly as interesting as they had been prior to my having discovered them. However, novelty is a tricky trail to follow, given the obvious pitfalls that befall the erstwhile researcher in attempting to make a case where specious evidence is available. I’d much prefer to set the standard for what future historians might come to regard as cutting a swath through the matrix of media lies, propaganda, and subterfuge than fall for easy sensationalism or the faddish addiction for controversy.

Granted, nobody (myself included of course) has a monopoly on truth, and it is my fervent desire that this blog be a forum for politically-sensitive ideas, philosophies, neglected nuggets of history, and other aspects of para-political thought that probes some of the darker corners of geo-politics, skullduggery, mind-control, conspiracies, and secret societies that have largely remained hidden from public scrutiny. Unlike the corporate-controlled media and alphabet governmental agencies that I cover, I welcome peoples’ comments, ideas, criticisms, suggestions, and radical departures from so-called acceptable public discourse. Before the late, great comic Bill Hicks died- he had pitched an idea about a television show to the UK that he wanted to call the “Counts of the Netherworld“. It would provide a sort of Socratic salon, where he and a good friend of his would discuss various ideas that deviated from the social norm. Knowing Bill, it would have been philosophic, counter-cultural, satiric, and no doubt funny, given Bill’s obvious witty comedic talents. Alas, it was not to be…and Bill Hicks succumbed to pancreatic cancer in the early part of 1994. As I sit at the bohemian coffee shop, Spider House, the song “Only the Good Die Young” plays appropriately over the speaker system. Indeed, in so many incidences, this has played out as essentially true over the centuries…particularly if one considers the Dionysian archetype. The “Queen of Conspiracy” even made an excellent case that the early deaths of 1960s rock stars and counter-cultural icons such as Jimi Hendrix, Phil Ochs, Mamma Cass, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, and others of that era were killed as part of a government plot called “Operation Chaos” to neutralize the more radical elements of the hippie movement from challenging the status quo and US institutions.

Before you think this rambling discourse mere lazy journalism, though, allow me to implore you once again to consider a few relevant issues, which are germane to anyone who would be a seeker of truth, albeit in the subjective sense. Great and profound truths need not be too complex, as Zen and the aphorisms of Confucius will attest. However, neither are they simplistic. More often than not, truth appears quite suddenly like a radiant gem shining among gray rocks under the light of focused attention, where prior to said attention it wasn’t even noticed. Is this not the role of the academic scholar? Unfortunately, his diligent studies are often too narrow and specialized to see anything except fossilized bones studied under the microscope of an eye that is just as often fogged, as William Blake said in his quote about the “mind fogged manacle”. This statement relates to what we have been conditioned to believe. And, it is this conditioned mindset that is so cluttered with so-called authoritative thoughts from parents, teachers, celebrities, corporate spokesmen, media talking heads, politicians, scientists, and other conditioned minds that keep us collectively regurgitating what our particular cultural civilization wants us to regurgitate. Pretty soon, our conditioning becomes so complete, so thorough, so ingrained into what we call our personalities that we become walking caricatures of television/movie characters…animated mannequins or mechanical animals.

Why is this important? It’s important for quite a lot of reasons, but for one thing…it’s important to the extent that any deviation from the norm is sharply beaten down not merely by government agencies spying on our every move (though that can happen) but ourselves. In other worlds, we become our own policemen, our own NSA, our own bullies promoting nothing so much as the sterile, unimaginative, conformity of the status quo. We are then, quite literally, in a conspiracy against ourselves…namely our own uniqueness of attitude, of ideas, of behavior, or anything else that constitutes our soul-given character. This homogenization is then easily manipulated by the propagandists, the corporate hucksters, the fear-mongering media, the psychiatric brain butchers, and the agents of political and psychological repression in whatever way they choose to direct and mold it. As the Minister of Propaganda for the Nazi Party, Joseph Goebbels, said- “The bigger the lie, the better the chance that people will believe it.” Lies, fear, diversion, misdirection, manipulation, and other techniques of psychological control become the currency of the state and the means to political repression in more ways than ordinarily thought of.

So, for instance, the very word “conspiracy” has been demonized to such an extent in the minds of the public by the media framing it within the context of “crazy theories” that it is rare to find an individual, who has escaped this mechanism of this linguistic pejorative to recognize what is actually being said on their merits. Even the objective pretensions of mainstream science has been shown, on occasion, to be subject to political and corporate ulterior motives. Just look at the obvious collusion of the FDA swearing off on GMOs as being considered equivalent to normal produce as just one example of this corrupt collusion taking place, despite plenty of evidence to the contrary. However, to question science’s often reductionist ideological bias, greed-driven considerations, technocratic leanings (and hence anti-environmental bent), and myopic compartmentalized and often militaristic focus is to invite cries of communist, luddite, and probably even terrorist in these post-911 days of fear-based hysteria.

Science, for all the good that its done, has on the whole failed the human race for these very reasons however. Let’s not forget that medical science (despite its laudable advancements in emergency care) kills around a million people a year, if you factor all the unnecessary surgeries, hospital super viruses, misdiagnosis of illnesses, body destroying radiation and chemo treatments for cancer patients, and deaths from all the prescription drugs out there given how toxic these drugs actually are. And, our energy science hasn’t advanced all that significantly in the past 100 years given our current dependence on oil (that wars are fought over), coal (that pollutes our air and waterways), and nuclear power (that thanks to the Fukushima catastrophe could spell the end for millions of people globally just as it already has for the Pacific marine life).

Are these facts of history the mere result of the fallible but always genuine striving of the human race to improve civilization, or are there more nefarious considerations afoot? While it has been said that “to err is human”, one might rightly ask- “how many times must we err about the same things before we realize that it goes beyond human err and into what we could call a conscious desire to keep the human race enslaved, broken, fragmented, fearful, sick, and under the thumb of those handful of powerful men that make the real decisions that will affect the lives of billions of people often to their detriment?” Most people, on average, therefore are generally well-meaning. They want to live happy, prosperous lives, take care of their families, and all the rest. However, as well-meaning and good intentioned as they might be, they have failed to enlighten themselves about just about everything outside their own banal and superficial lives. They sense an overall failure in their given institutions, but they can’t quite figure out why. And, they’re generally not that interested in figured it out through focused study and certainly not by organizing an alternative. They are often disenfranchised by the systems that govern their lives, but this alienation lead them stupid addictions be it alcohol, drugs, pornography, food, etc.

In other words, there is never a comprehensive accounting of not only their own purposeless lives but also the aimlessness by which society leads its collective lives. Instead, the newer generation cares for nothing save itself and its gadgets, as I’ve alluded to earlier in my comments about gadget fetishism. It needs constant entertainment, anxiously seeks further diversionary thrills, and can’t really focus all that well on building a solid framework by which to grow a viable base of knowledge whether of a practical, esoteric, or spiritual nature. It wants nothing so much as to gratify its appetites and vices, but it has lost its sense for community, for principles, for wisdom, for eloquence, for a shared ethic and purpose by which to evolve both individually and collectively as an intelligent species.

This is, from my standpoint at least, quite a disturbing trend that I see only getting worse before it gets any better (assuming of course that it ever does). I want nothing to do with it and doubt that I ever did. In a very real sense, I am at an impasse wherein the desire to want to fulfill the epitome of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs of self-actualization that necessitates playing a purpose-driven role within society has given way to feelings of despair in the future should we fail to gain our collective bearings. Alas, I will continue the best that I can to aid in the betterment of my fellows, while attempting to keep my cynicism to a minimum. But, I wonder if people can even be saved this late in the game or perhaps more profoundly whether or not they even should be.

Bill Hicks

Bill Hicks (Photo credit: Morgacito)


The Psychopathology of Civilized Life – A Brief Primer on Native Solutions to Modern Problems

Home of the SlaveWe are, it seems, being strangled as a heterogeneous society by a rope tugged upon by the political and corporate elites of our day and made stronger by an academic and scientific establishment, who fashion the vise-like threads that bind us. Whether these nooses around our collective necks are made of steel cables as they are in fascist states or velvet ropes as they are in so-called democratic ones- it makes little difference in the long run given the restrictive lack of latitude of thought and action either way.

After all, what earthly good is it to think and envision more utopian modes of living in the US when we are under the iron rule of bureaucratic governments, who along with the economic necessities imposed by the monied cartels of banks and everyday finance enslave all to a life of wage slavery or neo-feudalism? Such is the implicit law of the urban jungle, where the fattest cats live and prosper by devouring the weaker and smaller prey beneath them in a fierce competition for finite resources. That over half the world’s population lives in abject poverty working 16 hour days very often to support the voracious appetite of the comparatively wealthy few is considered “just the way things are”, as if to say that this kind of life is not only fair but normal.

One could make a very convincing argument that “psychopathy”, which is the mental disorder whereby one has an inability to feel empathy or compassion for other people, is becoming somewhat enshrined as a value in today’s society. After all, we are taught from a very early age in fact that violence is the way to solve your problems, that the poor deserve to have nothing, that compassion is a sign of weakness, that indifference to the suffering of others is “normal”, that winning at all costs by being the most aggressive and vicious competitor in sports, jobs, dating, and life, in general, is the only way to succeed and thrive. Hollywood movies, TV shows, internet chat groups, video games, etc. all promote this kind of dog-eat-dog world, where “only the strong” survive. This isn’t to say that a certain amount of friendly competition isn’t good and healthy in games and life, but only to suggest that constantly stressing this reptilian-brain “fight or flight” mode of Darwinian existence all the time when most of the necessities for survival (at least in places like the US) have been met is not only unnecessarily stressful, it’s downright stupid and counterproductive.

Clearly, Western corporate and financial elites see little to concern themselves with this state of global affairs. The only real disputes are centered around which countries, or rather powerful elites, get the lion-share of the spoils from various wars waged against countries with rich resources to exploit, ideologies to suppress, or indigenous peoples to slaughter. This, after all, is the business of the “march of progress” made up of mostly light-skinned people against the darker races of people, and to question the foundation tenets upon which this system operates is tantamount to heresy in this civilization. It isn’t merely racism, sexism, and religious bigotry that fuels this kind of world, however, but rather these xenophobic tendencies spring from an ingrained and indoctrinated psychopathology that runs counter to our ingrained sense of “fair play” and conscience later on in life.

Children, for instance, are taught to hate..they don’t come out of the womb like that. Look at children before the age of around 5 or 6, and you’ll still be able to see the wonderment, the joy, and compassion in their eyes. Now, look at those same kids 10 years later, and it will almost certainly be completely gone…replaced usually with a look of resentment, anger, and cynicism. Where did their joy and love of life go? While the innocence of youth is usually thought of a naivety and ignorant folly in today’s neurotic society, adulthood isn’t meant to be equated with intolerance, hatred, bigotry, and psychopathy. Quite the contrary. The ego-centrism of childhood is supposed to give way to more altruistic and compassionate feelings in later adulthood, as it did for the native Americans (for instance) before the missionaries taught them shame and guilt.

Now, parents and religious strictures teach shame and guilt to children about their “dirty” bodies, about the “sinful” nature of sexuality, about their opinions, etc. Parents, claiming to love their children, are taught to beat their children…so they do. This  in turn creates a dichotomy of emotions within their children, who rely of mommy’s love on the one hand and fear her wrath on the other.Daddy’s wrath is, if anything, even greater and more bewildering, since it is often slow to build and irrationally unleashed with brutal consequences later in life. This doesn’t even touch on the obvious forms of child abuse that include things like torture, abandonment, and sexual abuse. However, I suspect that it is a lot more common than we have any inkling of in our “Hear No Evil, See No Evil” way of life.

Naturally, parents have been conditioned by their culture to “civilize” their children…that is to say “tame” them by making them behave a certain way that society thinks necessary for them to join the ranks of the walking wage slave dead. So, they follow the will of society’s expectations and punish little Billy for talking too loud, for getting dirty in the yard, for playing when he’s supposed to study, for not paying attention, for being rowdy and rambunctious, for saying a swear word he probably heard from dad, for jumping on the bed, for breaking a glass, for laughing about something that’s crude, for playing with his wee-wee, for not coming immediately when called to, for not keeping still at the dinner table, for belching, for acting too spontaneously, for being silly, etc.

Of course, these actions (in and of themselves) are merely the expressions of a child’s spontaneous actions, which imply no malice or evil whatsoever. However, they run counter to society’s expectations and hence parental expectations. So, they are yelled and beaten out of them. Later on, when the child becomes an adolescent, little of their true self remains intact, and their fragmented selves are fraught with neurosis, resentment, and occasionally psychosis. But, this is “normal”, right? If they continue to express themselves against societal norms, they are usually put a regimen of psychoactive drugs such as Ritalin, Prozac, Zoloft, or some other Class II pharmaceutical medication in order to modify his unruly behavior and get him to obey his/her authority figures, who know what’s best. And, if that still doesn’t work to brow-beat him/her into submission- they’re usually locked up in some psychiatric prison or sent to some penitentiary somewhere. And, yet hardly anyone questions this form of child rearing in our supposedly enlightened society, a society that is getting progressively more psychotic mind you.

And yet, question it I must as a matter of conscience and philosophic integrity as a human being. Is not there a common humanity among us? Should not we find that shared ethic as sentient creatures of a common ancestry, if not in biology at least in spirit? The civilized countries would claim they are sophisticated and benevolent in bringing their supreme culture, religions, educational institutions, medicine, and technology to the barbarous heathen native peoples, who live like ignorant savages. That is what we are taught about them, at least, and it is as much a part of our popular imagination as our own smug sense of superiority. And yet, native peoples didn’t have prisons, psychiatric wards, juvenile delinquency, drug addiction, rashes of teenage suicides, mental breakdowns, etc. that so-called “civilized” nations do, especially the US that leads the world in prisoners by far. Our solution, therefore, to problems is to make war on them…”The War on Drugs”, “The War on Terror”, “The War on Poverty”. Did we ever stop to think that perhaps it is our collective propensity to “make war” that might be one of our problems in the first place?

Naturally, it never occurs to us that our monotheistic religions are just as superstitious and certainly more pathologically hypocritical in their blood lust practiced by men claiming virtuous divine authority. Nor are we conscious of indigenous peoples’ ability to heal themselves quite readily and effectively using plants, herbs, and natural remedies devoid of the often debilitating emotional and physical side-effects that allopathic Western medicine has on man, including some 100,000 deaths per year from the recommended dosage of prescription drugs.

Our culture is driven to incessantly chase money, materialism, status, and amusements of every sort, and its inherent artificiality and hollowness of substance along with the rapidity with which it’s being foisted on us is killing us (death by a million cuts as it were). Most people at least feel that things aren’t right with us, some have even taken steps to remedy their own lives, but very few have understood what we can do to cure the greater societal ills and collective psychosis, since it is much larger and pervasive than one individual. This isn’t to say that people are homogenous..far from it. Everyone brings their own individual personalities, experiences, and enculturation to bear upon their unique circumstances in life. Clearly, some are more adaptive and versatile than others just as some are more rigid and ignorant.

However, I am interested in how homogenous environments affect different people to the extent that certain trends and patterns can be perceived and determined to exist within society. That is to say- “To the extent that our environmental context remains very similar, if not the same, and our conscious perception relatively the same given our biology and cognitive function, how does our civilized and by now highly artificial environment affect us on an emotional, physical, and psychic level?” Can we look dispassionately and detached enough from our own cultural conditioning to even begin to make an informed and observant diagnosis of homo-civilus’ pathology? Or, are we doomed to look at such a question through the collective hypnosis that this term implies?

While I am in no way free completely from the totality of my culture’s insipid programming (who is?), I often find myself radically questioning the pillars of Western civilization with a zeal and fierceness that I rarely hear reflected in others. Perhaps others are much more critical in private, but unless we openly and quite publicly question, challenge, and even rebel against these implicit assumptions of civilization- we won’t advance and evolve beyond what I see are the major obstacles to human consciousness and liberation.