July 06, 2017

305

Waferinos-

Nothing new to report, really. Last month, the LA Times revealed that since Jan. 1st, there were nearly 28,000 shootings in the US. 6800 people died, 13,500 were injured. The rate of all this will probably increase between now and Xmas. In short, our decline is rt on schedule.

Meanwhile, the progs continue their foolishness, as many of you have noted, and Trumpi continues to damage US standing around the world. These things will also increase over time.

The only thing lacking in my database is the per capita amount of pastrami being consumed in NY on a daily basis. This might be a worthwhile topic for us to discuss in this new thread.

-mb

167 Comments:

Anonymous James Allen said...

Patrimony Schmatrimony, or The Iraqis'll never miss 'em
The Hobby Lobby arts and crafts chain has agreed to pay a $3 million fine and forfeit the objects to settle a case brought by the US Attorney over the acquisition of some 5,500 cultural artifacts thought to have been looted from Iraqi archaeological sites. The objects were shipped to the US identified as "samples" and "ceramic tiles," with Turkey stated as the country of origin.

Don't cry for company owner Steve Green: he still has some 40,000 other artifacts he plans to use in a Museum of the Bible, a $500 million structure that is to open in Washington, DC in the fall.
http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/hobby-lobby-agrees-return-artifacts-smuggled-iraq-n779931

You may remember the Hobby Lobby name from the 2014 Supreme Court case Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.: in a 5-4 decision, the Court decided that privately held corporations could not be required to provide contraception coverage for their employees. The Affordable Care Act stipulates that employers need to provide health care for their employees that covers all forms of contraception at no cost. Hobby Lobby contended that "its religious beliefs prohibit them from providing health coverage for contraceptive drugs and devices that end human life after conception."

10:15 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

Wafers,

Upon recommendation of this blog, I just finished reading Jessa Crispin's "Why I am not a Feminist", and I VERY much advise it to you all. Finished it in one sitting. The issues covered in the book are much larger than taking down modern Feminism and will definitely strike a chord with you. A sneak peak:

"Not every woman, or man, is ambitious. Not every woman is determined to make her mark on the world. Not every woman gets satisfaction out of working 80 hours a week just to watch some young Harvard asshole get promoted to a job above her that she didn't really want but would pay her a little better".

Kanye

10:33 AM  
Blogger Joe Anderson said...

I'd like to get out of the country before someone accuses me of being a Russian spy.

Luckily, I have the resources to relocate before the other shoe drops. Any recommendations? How's Mexico? Do the people in other countries understand what is happening in the U.S. Empire?

My wife is from Vietnam. I met her while teaching ESL in Hai Phong. She seems to think things are mostly fine here, as she grew up in Vietnam in the 1980s (when there still wasn't enough food).

Anyway, I've been offered jobs in Costa Rica and Uruguay. I also like Ecuador, and I suspect I could find something there fairly easily. I would consider New Zealand, but I don't think my family can afford to stay there. Also, it would be hard to find work there for me.

Currently tying up our "lose ends." Should be ready to leave in September, but we could leave now if SHTF.

Thoughts?

11:51 AM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Just another day in the homeland of brotherly love...


https://abcn.ws/2sJzG4t

12:50 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Regarding the damage to U.S. standing around the world--the sick part, from what I read in that Common Dreams article, ds that our standing is back to about where it was at the end of Chimpy Bush's term, but it was much better all during Obarfa's presidency despite the fact that if anything the latter wreaked even more havoc around the world thanks in large part to his psychotic first Secretary of State. Of course, progs in their infinite wisdom are eager to whip up these kinds of stories to try and make Trump look bad without ever reflecting upon their own role in not holding the great black savior accountable.

Relatedly, I did note one funny thing in relation to the 4th. This dingy old bat in our neighborhood whose house always has an American flag hanging outside of it wrote a post on the community's Wastebook page complaining that there were almost no other houses flying the flag for the holiday, unlike past years. She and her husband are, of course, big time Republicans in a neighborhood full of progs where most people either work for the federal government or for government contractors. Two days later, the post had exactly one "like." I so wanted to respond to her and say that if you have to ask the question, you really don't want to know the answer.

1:13 PM  
OpenID rsuusa said...

Spent the 4th on a nearby lake in a kayak watching grossly obese, not mildly overweight, people on monstrous jet skis and powerboats roar by in one direction and then turn around with much shouting and hooting and roar back to where they started. Sometimes they lost their balance and fell into the water with their huge plastic tankards in hand; at which point there was a moment of stunned silence and then the party roared back to life and they resumed their circuit. Bizarre behavior really. Not at all sure what is fun about any of it. There were some people fishing as well and not catching a thing. No wonder given the noise they make. Very odd people these "Americans".

1:52 PM  
Blogger C. J. Timmins said...

Add another to the list. Last week, in my home town, a man shot an 18 year old girl in the head while merging at high speed. Road rage + white shooter + black victim = YAHTZEE!

In the face of such violence, Americans retreat further into their phones and televisions for fantasy and escape. And what do they find there? Reflections of our culture's psyche and preoccupations: power struggles (House of Cards, GoT), boot strap stories for the hollow American hustle (Mad Men [advertising/materialism], Breaking Bad [drug dealing], Sopranos [organized crime]), violence and debased sexuality (Sons of Anarchy, Game of Thrones), superficial values (Kardashians)--not to mention online porn, MMA/UFC, and the NFL.

@Megan - We WAFers often find ourselves channeling McLuhan (rightfully so!). One of my favorite behaviors of the past 10 years is how Americans "binge watch" their TV shows and justify the behavior by saying we're living in the "golden age" of television. TV is still TV, and Americans only fulfill the needs of their id/reptilian brain with the empty calories. No transcendent beauty to be found. Shows with tenderness like Mister Rogers' Neighborhood and Joy of Painting with Bob Ross were outliers decades ago. Now there's zero appetite for them. This is why television will never reach the heights of classical music, Renaissance masterpieces, modernist literature, French cinema. No one wants it to. You can't lose the tender touch you've never had.

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

@ Al-Qa'bong, continuing the USA could have been Canada discussion from the last post.

Yes, Gopnik doesn't seen to know or remember colonial, pre-independence US history. basically the American character was set in stone by the time the War of Independence broke out. The Boston Tea party is a major clue into this: the Americans would rather pay higher prices to the Dutch East India Tea Co. than pay tea taxes to the mother country, which saved their ass in what is known to us as the French and Indian War. Not that the conduct of the Empire towards the Americans didn't help except to further distort and "refine" the American character. Other clues are Bacon's Rebellion and the war of extermination against New England's first nations, otherwise known as King Philip's War.

A good book to read on the development of the American character is Carrol Smith-Rosenberg's This Violent Empire: The Birth of an American National Identity. Here's an excellent review by Neil Godfrey. I'll give you an excerpt: "Deeply divided along religious, ethnic, economic, and cultural lines, the founding generation (and, indeed, all subsequent generations) had no common history to 'stabilize, to fix … [or to] guarantee an unchanging oneness or cultural belongingness.'”

It explains a lot.

5:13 PM  
Blogger pg said...

GSWH,
Yr Lordship--I don't live in NY (State) any more (I did 2003-06) so I cannot tell you about pastrami consumption levels. I CAN tell you that the cost for snausage has gone up.... for "ends" from $3.69 to $4.69.

9:42 PM  
Blogger Sarasvati said...

This is the result of not enough pastrami being consumed:

https://www.google.com/search?q=cartoons+death+of+conversation&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8

8:25 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Joe-

Costa Rica, terrific.

Wafers-

I just started rdg this:

https://www.amazon.com/Class-Lucinda-Rosenfeld/dp/0316265411/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1499433044&sr=1-1&keywords=class+novel

It's a portrait of progs in their natural habitat. Funny, also revolting.

mb

9:12 AM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Something I have realized recently is that the "isolationism caused WWII" narrative, which is used to justify reckless "intervention" today, is complete bullshit. The way I see it, WWII had 3 main causes.

1. The end of WWI failed to create a lasting peace.
2. The rise of Nazism in Germany as a "national religion."
3. The fact that Western elites were sympathetic to Hitler and fascism until it became obvious how dangerous Hitler was.

The third point is especially revealing IMO. The Western power elites were afraid that communism would spread outside the Soviet Union and threaten their own wealth and power. Therefore, they saw Hitler's model of fascism as a way to preserve their power.

9:28 AM  
Anonymous Mike Kelly said...

Hi Wafers,

I've found a new hobby that will carry me into my upcoming retirement. I get a lot of calls from Private Caller. I used to ignore them, but lately I've found it fun to answer them and speak with Private Caller. I received a call from the Democratic Congressional Committee Something, and I told Private Caller that I could see no difference between the two major political parties. I told her that it would take a microscope to tell the difference. I told her Obama did nothing for average people and that neither party serves us. Private Caller was silent. Another Private Caller asked me if I was pro-life or pro-choice. I told her that I was pro-death and that abortion should be mandatory for stupid people. Private Caller hung up on me. How rude! My only question is: when will Private Caller be promoted to Corporal Caller?

PS: Pastrami yay! In northern New York, we have the added benefit of Montreal Smoked Meat and the engaging ongoing controversy about which is better. You decide, America!

10:08 AM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Another verklempt american moment:

An Indianapolis firefighter who shot his neighbor four times in the chest will not face charges as it was for self-defense. Firefighter Dean Keller and his neighbor Jeffrey Weigle engaged in a heated property line argument on June 27 along a small section of fence which ran along Dean Keller's property line.

The office said the situation escalated when Weigle adjusted a portion of the fence then drove away on his riding lawnmower. Keller then approached the fence, reversed his riding mower and drew a gun from his pocket and shot him 4 times.

usa! usa!

10:46 AM  
Blogger alyosha said...

Joe -

it's important to be far away physically but also financially. I've considered Costa Rica (lovely) but it's monetarily too tied to the USA.

Even if you're stuck physically in America, you want to uncouple yourself from the financial system (dollars) as much as possible. Investigate how a country's finances and money actually works.

I believe Uruguay is less coupled to America than Costa Rica, and NZ probably even more so. I'd want to get on the other side of the planet, but then you start to come under the influence of the other major powers, such as China.

11:11 AM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

@ rsuusa,

Fishing and not catching a thing! I think the fish were scared into all the nooks and crannies of the lake b/c of all the other people having motorized "fun" upon the lake.

In my neighborhood in inner city New Orleans all the neighborhood kids went and set off fireworks in the vacant lots and streets. This never happened when I was growing up, and is in addition to the public fireworks being exhibited up by the river.

I agree with you--very strange people, these Americans.

2:46 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike K-

But is it *le vrai* smoked meat?

mb

3:18 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Hola MB and Wafers,

Isabel Martinez, accused of stabbing her husband and children to death, flashes a bizarre thumbs-up in court:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/07/us/georgia-stabbing-court-thumbs-up/index.html?sr=fbCNN070717georgia-stabbing-court-thumbs-up1220PMVideoLink

MB-

I believe the 'MB' that El Kabong referred to in the Mishra book is for the late Marxist scholar, Marshall Berman.

Turkey-Buster-

Many thanks for the "This Violent Empire" book. Sounds like it's along the lines of one of my favorites: "What is America?: A Short History of the New World Order," by Ronald Wright.

Miles

7:05 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Flight Attendants are now PUMMELING passengers!! Everyone is getting in on the action these days!!!


http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/386c25518f464186bf7a2ac026580ce7/Article_2017-07-07-US--Flight%20Attendant%20Assault/id-5611bccc88924308a2349da0b23f6cbe

7:47 PM  
Anonymous Bruce Bennett said...

Dr. Berman -
Good to hear your comment about Costa Rica. That is the country I am seriously considering moving too. I visited there once in 1979 when I was meeting a sailboat in Puntarenas that would take me all the way to Tahiti and I remember how beautiful the country was. It is many years later and 1/4 of the country has been set aside as national forests, etc. and there seems to be a strong environmental ethic in place. Costa Rica is a stable democracy and it has no army to drain the country's resources.
Also, as I am on a limited retirement income I appreciate the low rents for some really fine places to live. Usually the casitas are furnished and many come with utilities including wifi as part of the rent.
I have also heard that Ecuador is a good place to consider. The recent presidential vote was decided in favor of the socialist candidate and not the former banker. The Ecuadorian government actually welcomes expats and they provide discounts for them on many items once they have settled in with their legal residency.

9:26 PM  
Blogger comrade simba said...

Facebook is kinda like church, y'know
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/26/mark-zuckerberg-compares-facebook-to-church-little-league.html
Went to a local deli today as my part of the pastrami topic. The whole place was sandwiches in one hand, cellfone in the other. Praying, I guess. God help them, lol?

11:13 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Great observation, C.J. Timmins. I used to watch many of those earlier HBO series while they were originally airing about a decade ago, but I gave them up as I matured intellectually and my aesthetic sensibilities likewise matured. There is a certain quality lacking in American film and television that you find in foreign cinema—I don’t know that I’d call it innocence or tenderness, but maybe just sincerity. You watch a film by Eric Rohmer, say, and right away you can just identify with the characters because they seem human. I think if you have some sensitivity about you, there comes a point where you lose your appetite for bustle and melodrama and long for something quiet. I’ve been watching a lot of Japanese films from the 1950s and 1960s, some set in contemporary times, some in antiquity, because they have that understated quality to them. Ultimately, even this is just a form of escapism, though—a poor substitute for viscerally connecting with someone in the real world, but what can you do when everyone is mesmerized by the colorful costumes, the gore, the intrigue, too wrapped up in the lives of the pretty people on the screen to feel anything themselves?

12:55 AM  
Anonymous Megan said...

CJ Timmins,

I agree with you entirely. So funny that you should mention this strange phenomenon of "binge watching" TV shows. I was actually thinking about that the other day. I don't know, but it seems to me that there is something terrifically vulgar about the whole concept! At the very least, it's just another seemingly "harmless" thing that ends up taking over our lives. And it's a shabby deal when we give up community, nature, beauty, joy--and all the other good things in life--for mere anesthetization and distraction. It's also kind of scary when you think that you can watch some of these series for 80 hours straight. I'm guilty too, but lately I've been trying to cut down drastically on my own TV-watching, and do more wholesome things, like bird-watching, taking walks in the woods, etc. In any case, this life goes by all too quickly, so it's good to occasionally remind ourselves to wake up and seek something better.

2:38 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

comrade-

First Dolt American Church, I guess.

Bruce-

Scroll back: there's an article by some mom who moved to Ecuador with her kids, and says it's the best decision she ever made.

Jeff-

That makes sense. I believe Mishra will cite my work when pigs fly.

Just finished bk by Lucinda Rosenfeld I referred to above. The bk is rather weak as a novel; ending is contrived. But until that pt, it's a sad and astute portrait of America and Americans, similar in some ways to "Freedom" by Jonathan Franzen. "Class" is the wrong title; shd have been "Douche Bags on Parade," or perhaps "Progs in Hell." You wince on every page. How empty these people's lives are, how devoid of any happiness whatsoever. I'm thinking I shd start a new publishing house called Waferbooks. To be on our list, necessary conditions are (a) demonstration of Americans as bad jokes, and (b) commitment to a declinist position, i.e. belief that the country is going down the toilet. Regarding this last pt, I'm 100 pp. into "The Road to Ruin," by Jas Rickards. I already read the Conclusion, and strongly recommend it to all Wafers. Author is a true declinist--refreshing!

mb

11:24 AM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

Strong movie recommendation- Visioneers

http://m.imdb.com/title/tt0833557/

Only worthwhile project from the US since 2008. Totally prophetic a decade later.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

Another quote from bio of Geo. WA.:
"Some Englishmen came away from the war (French/Indian) with a bitterly gained conviction that the colonials were a despicable people - hardly worthy to call themselves the king's subjects. Their cowardice in battle was boundless, their greed and dishonesty no less conspicuous. Americans were so wedded to their own little provinces, so jealous of their neighbors, and so addicted to making money that they were incapable of working for the good of the empire as a whole."

The American response? "The Americans became conscious of their distinctiveness. They gloried in it. They began to believe in their own moral superiority."

"Vanity of vanities...a generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever...is their a thing of which it is said, "See this is new?" It has been already in the ages before us. There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remberance of later things yet to be among those who come after." Ec. Ch 1:1-18

1:39 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

MB-

Many thanks for the bk suggestions, MB. I just finished "Butcher's Crossing" based on yr suggestion, BTW. Superb novel.

MB, Wafers-

All's well in Trumplandia dept.:

You heard it here first: WE'RE LOOKING AT AN EIGHT-YEAR TERM FOR TRUMPO.

The Democratic Party hasta be the lamest political organization since the Guns and Dope Party (ca. 1980s). The other night I was talking to a couple of solid Democrats (man & woman, early fifties) at a cocktail party who brazenly continued to defend Hillary's "brilliance" despite her faults as a candidate and a person. "Trump's the one who's brilliant," I blurted out, "all Hillary did was come up w/the silly and conceited 'I'm With Her' sign." This went completely over their heads... For fuck's sake, a party still this deluded and filled w/a farrago of idiots like this deserves to be doomed.

Miles

3:09 PM  
Anonymous Mike Kelly said...

Dr B,

Yes, le vrai fume viande is what we call smoked meat south of the Quebec border. There is a place right across the border in Hemmingford, QC that makes the real deal. It's worth the trip.

Here's a good article about the differences between fume viande and pastrami.

http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/06/difference-between-pastrami-smoked-meat-katzs-schwartzs-mile-end.html

Come up sometime and I'll buy you a sandwich.

4:36 PM  
Anonymous AS said...

Bill Hicks -

The global polling done every year by the Pew Research Center reveals that the international community is just as preoccupied with identity politics as Americans, and that much of the world's supposed 'opposition' to the US is largely dependent on who the head of state happens to be at the time. Most people - regardless of nationality - are fairly vapid, in my experience.

4:37 PM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

In your weekend update of news from Cascadia, the wine bottles were flying on a Delta flight from Seattle to Beijing as the perpetrator withstood repeated bottle pummeling and required massive response to be restrained. Do you suppose Hudek IV was suffering an episode of existential strain?

http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/crime/florida-man-charged-with-interfering-with-crew-on-seattle-to-beijing-flight/

And in another apparent case of existential strain, this time in yours truly’s backyard, a guy got his wish for “suicide by cop” as a Washington State Trooper on Interstate 5 granted his last wish:

http://www.theolympian.com/news/local/article160278344.html

4:47 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

Americans who can’t afford their homes up 146 percent.

http://www.nbcnews.com/business/real-estate/americans-who-can-t-afford-their-homes-146-percent-n774106

Score another one for the ancients. Why modern mortar crumbles, but Roman concrete lasts millennia.

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/07/why-modern-mortar-crumbles-roman-concrete-lasts-millennia

5:37 PM  
Anonymous JRS said...

Hi Dr Berman,

More Carnage in academia. I've read a few articles this week of faculty resigning because of PC puritanism.
Sadly, I think this is the tip of the iceberg.

https://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/michael-bonesteel-resignation-saic-henry-darger-comics/Content?oid=27428790

I find your blog the most enlightening one I've read. It also makes me laugh a lot when I feel I need a good cheering up.

I hope all is well with everyone.

Julie

7:28 PM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

americans are very kind and polite- "vous-type" people.

William Adams, Priest, 35yo, was arrested in a road rage incident on Palm City, Florida Wednesday after pulling out a gun, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

According to an FHP report, Adams - a priest at Calvary Episcopal Church in Fletcher, NC -- was driving a red Chevrolet Corvette when he attempted to brake-check another vehicle, a Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck, that was closely following his Corvette.

As the victim attempted to pass the Corvette, the Priest pointed a semi-automatic hand gun at them. The Glock 22 was taken to the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office and submitted as evidence.

Priest Adams was arrested and charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

The next time you cannot get an aaaamen, perhaps, take out the glock!

8:18 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Here is Maine's Conservative DUMB Governor saying that the US would be better off if print media went away...that's because these dummies do not read.


http://nbcnews.to/2tvsKFb

10:58 AM  
Anonymous Golf Pro said...

There's quite a good Camille Paglia interview about Trump etc. here, in case anyone hasn't seen it:

http://www.weeklystandard.com/camille-paglia-on-trump-democrats-transgenderism-and-islamist-terror/article/2008464

If Trump is symbolic of decline, the fact that his opponents are incapable of a rational or coherent response to him is even more symbolic, imho.

11:23 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Julie-

I confess, I get a kick out of American institutions shooting themselves in the foot (or is it the head?). Whee!

Mike K-

Actually, I thought it was viande fume. I usta live in Montreal; for some odd reason, they haven't invited me back. Tabernak!

Ed-

Cdn't run it. The software recognizes only Turkey-Buster. Try again.

mb

12:56 PM  
Blogger Mister Roboto said...

If Trump is symbolic of decline, the fact that his opponents are incapable of a rational or coherent response to him is even more symbolic, imho.

That's why I'm glad I found this place. I was starting to feel like I'm the only person who sees and understands what's really going on and everybody else was just guzzling down the delusions as though it were sweet nectar from Olympus on high.

2:01 PM  
Anonymous El Alamein said...

as for TV -

1 - the majority of Americans are not watching these shows that dominate the cultural conversation. they are watching American Idol, real housewives etc.
2 - As I've argued here before, I think the Sopranos is as WAFER a show that's ever been aired. if you've ever seen David Chase interviewed you'd think it was the esteemed MB talking at times.
3) I would recommend "Better Call Saul" - unlike some of the other shows mentioned, it has great humanity and empathy, all while largely stepping out of the realm of power fantasy and into the life of the run of the mill American douchebag.

3:18 PM  
Anonymous excluded-dissent said...

Alan Watts - "Any law that tries to enforce by the power of the state private morals or your own business in looking after your own nervous system is in fact an unenforceable law. All unenforceable laws lead to blackmail and public demoralization."

http://charleshughsmith.blogspot.com/2017/06/proximity-is-destiny.html

The stupid cultures of self-destructive interest, education, religion, corps, lobby cartels of lawyers, banking - I couldn't tolerate any of it since elementary school and I still don't understand how it's even possible. People in high positions enforce the caste based class warfare. That banks can profile for sociopaths, AIPAC successfully destroys any non-Zionist politician, the health insurance racket, politicians fake forum robo-calls, pick your poison the cruelty is everywhere. If you criticize any of the viral corruption you're excluded and impoverished. It's all one matrix pyramid of privatized power and wealth extraction - increasingly unforgiving to people. The wealthy are the last to ever help.

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Okay, MB! :^)

Not exactly the same way I posted it before, but here goes:

It turns out that the Pentagon has been censoring content in movies and TV shows for quite some time---so they won't look bad.

I wonder how the original Star Wars came to acquire the story line it got. It's basically a reprise of the US War of Independence from the British Empire, with a Second World War dogfight and Naziesque elements thrown in for the Galactic Empire for good measure. In the original, second and third drafts of the script, this Empire was attacking and occupying two small, outlying worlds, each with its own peculiar lifeways, customs and traditions that were not congruent with the Empire's own non-negotiable way of life. It's something that makes you go, hmmm...

Then again, Lucas could have made the changes on their own cause he knew it'd make the movie more popular.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

http://www.chieftain.com/news/pueblo/widow-claims-husband-casualty-of-ice-crackdown/article_d534d353-6343-57d7-bf08-bf5ffdb7c226.html

http://www.chieftain.com/columns/henson/henson-an-american-story-that-makes-us-uncomfortable/article_028ec549-138b-52a6-b530-19e937243d08.html

Stories like these just make me sad and wish for the end. ICE tricked the poor man who lived in our "community" for 20 years and now he's dead.

On another note I checked out WAF from local library thru interlibrary loan. It came to me from the U.S. Air Force Academy library...hmm are there air force officers out there who understand? Or did they read it with derision?

Agree Visioneers is an excellent movie!

5:21 PM  
Anonymous Bruce Bennett said...

I want to let the WAFers know that there is a fine article by Andrew O'Hehir on Salon about the rise of Trump and the decline of the West. It is currently located on the right side of their home page. O'Hehir used to be Salon's movie critic but he switched over to sociopolitical columns and they have had real insight into the many idiocies that we are confronted with these days. I remember how he described Trump last year before the "election" - "a fake candidate, running a fake campaign, in a fake country".

8:27 PM  
Anonymous Mike Kelly said...

A preview of decline and even a hint of how people might survive post-collapse.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jul/09/what-happened-when-walmart-left

12:05 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Bruce-

"Fake country" is indeed the issue. Beyond the Wafer community, who understands this? Last few yrs have seen publication of a # of bks by serious historians arguing that the American Revolution was a mistake.

Gunnar-

The question is whether the USAF will fly a drone over my house and rub me out.

mb

10:49 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

You never know when your number's gonna be up: a 13-year-old Hammond, Indiana kid, playing basketball with friends on July 1st, was struck by a falling bullet; he died six days later in a Chicago hospital. The police speculate that someone nearby had fired off a weapon "like a firework," with the ultimately fatal result. Police hope someone who might've observed such behavior will come forward.

http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/boy-struck-by-falling-bullet-dies-hammond-indiana-433464053.html

11:16 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Mike Kelley -- I'm just shaking my head at this quote from the Walmart closure story:

“I went to Walmart for the walk,” she says. “I went early and I got a cart and I walked all over the store. I loved walking around it. I would walk and talk, talk and walk. I could walk the store all day.”

I love hiking, and living in NOVA as I do I've been out to West Virginia many times. There are so many beautiful places to walk in the woods out there that I can't imagine why anyone would want to spend all day in freaking Walmart. I used to have to drive an a couple of hours to do what that idiot woman could do from her front porch.

That whole story is a real eye opener as to just how helpless and pathetic most Americans are. You would think that the closure of the worst thing to ever happen to local businesses in the area would present an opportunity for people to reordering their community and making it a better place to live. But no, most of them have no ability to imagine a different world where people don't drive to a big ugly box store full of cheap garbage from China to stock up on the "necessities" of life. Hats off to the few the article mentions that are now raising their own food--why they weren't already doing so before the Walmart closed is another matter.

12:04 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Hate in America is increasing as the country continues its decline and fall.


https://usat.ly/2u7pqDj

2:02 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

jj-

This is gd pummeling!

Bill-

Rest assured, there are (many) more of her than there are of you. They live in the Wal-Mart of the mind.

mb

2:38 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

I hate to be the bearer of good news, but here's a little bright spot in contradistinction to the accelerating decline of the USA: In Chelsea [MA], coalition aims to save lives on the verge of unravelling.

Rest assured, though, that this program was adopted from a model developed in Canada by the city's municipal employee townies--most of them hispanic--and not by any progressives. Being your typical stupid American, and worse yet IYIs, they'd sooner reinvent the wheel!

4:58 PM  
Anonymous voiceless-labor said...

Tongue and cheek joking seems almost gone due to political correctness which keeps people from being kept honest and further hollows out the vitality of the culture of tolerating the intolerant (who are doing the privileged based privatizing), also furthering the culture of ignoring and emotional invalidation which is abusive in so many ways.

All this may be a symptom of proximity to privilege and wealth inequality which absorbs all the values into a standard system like corporate hiring practices which have so many methods of vetting for discrimination. Pretty hard to grow and be competitive in such exclusive privatized environments.

The servicing of non-restructured toxic debt (e.g. financializing the economy) has forced austerity on labor and production - forcing companies to hire ready made employees to avoid the expense of training which makes it harder to get experience and keep skills after being laid off. HR became an extension of management and employee grievances are rarely addressed - polit-bureaus everywhere.

Other than the internet where are the places to express discontent - particularly if you're poor or unemployed or poorly employed and over-taxed?

5:35 PM  
Anonymous troutbum said...

Dr. MB and all Wafers worldwide:

Regarding Dr. MB's opening for this posting, don't miss the occasional updates to the "Gun Fail" series, here's the latest:

https://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/7/3/1655623/-GunFAIL-CCXLIII

And, here's an article which clearly calls out the existential future of climate change, that is to say, the possible extinction
of life on the planet. It's quite compelling, I think it's a must read.

It's titled : "When Will the Planet Be Too Hot For Humans? Much, Much Sooner Than You Imagine."

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/07/climate-change-earth-too-hot-for-humans.html



7:04 PM  
Anonymous marianne said...

Bruce,

The article by Andrew O'Hehir you recommended was very good. His accounting of US history was the piece I enjoyed the most. It's the fake country, indeed.

Marianne

7:07 PM  
Anonymous Chopped Liver BH said...

Dr. Berman,

Would you please give us some of the titles of books written by the historians who think the American Revolution was a mistake. I'd love to read them.

11:54 PM  
Anonymous DioGenes said...

@AS

"Hoi pleistoi hoi kakoi"

"Most people are bad."

- Menander

You can elect a con man king... But there still ain't nothing like the real thing!

https://youtu.be/DUKaRpSMuAA

2:44 AM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

@El Alamein,

I agree with you about The Sopranos. I think most people watched it for the sex and violence but if you pay attention to the underlying message of the show it is a pretty scathing depiction of American culture.

I have not been watching too much TV lately but I did see the 1973 film The Exorcist for the first time and I was surprised by how good it was. I was expecting a simplistic gross-out horror film but it was really more about spiritual conflict than anything else. I don't know if I would classify it as a WAFer film but The Exorcist is interesting in that it takes its theology seriously and this gives it a certain power that modern movies seem to lack.

2:47 AM  
Blogger Esteban Allende said...

Teens kill endangered birds, setting back conservation efforts 10 years:

http://jacksonville.com/news/national/2017-07-05/teens-kill-endangered-birds-setting-back-conservation-efforts-10-years

3:33 AM  
Anonymous Dale said...

“The Evolution of God,” by Robert Wright is a very good runner up to your "Wandering God", professor. It has a nice and sturdy sociological spine to it. Anticipating his new book on meditation https://www.amazon.com/Why-Buddhism-True-Philosophy-Enlightenment/dp/1439195455/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_sims?ie=UTF8

I also got thru his "The Moral Animal" and "Nonzero" a few years ago.

5:51 AM  
Anonymous Nathan said...

Scientists uncover St Columba's cell on Iona
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-40556985

A moving story

6:15 AM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

Americans continue to demonstrate their helpfulness in times of distress:

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/rescuers-robbed-at-gunpoint-trying-to-aid-distressed-hiker/ar-BBEcwpA?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartandhp

Meanwhile, closer to home in Cascadia, an Olympia man’s existential strain finally boiled over as he mailed his severed finger, bullet, and marijuana joint to the IRS in Ogden, Utah. Seems Normand Lariviere has been angry at the IRS for the last 20 years since his layoff in the 1990’s from his job as a contractor to the military:

http://www.theolympian.com/news/local/crime/article160647969.html

And in Vancouver, WA, there was a close encounter of the law enforcement kind as a mom is threatened with confiscation of her kids for leaving them in the car for 20 minutes while she was shopping. Watch the video and see if you can spot the existential strain:

http://www.theolympian.com/news/nation-world/world/article160307384.html

10:10 AM  
Anonymous Dan said...

Saw a mother leaving school with her 4-5 year old boy. I assume she was signing him up for kindergarten. She held his hand while crossing a rather busy street but also in the same hand was her I-phone. Gee, think you can better signal to your child that you're really not all that important to me? Of course, parents on i-phones while with their kid (s) has become almost de rigueur in the US. The great justice will be when the parent needs the assistance of their children, they will be too engaged in I-crap to even notice.
I also happened to hear a mother say to her child, "I'm thinking of getting angry." So is this what discipline in the 21st century looks like? Of course, I'm not encouraging brutality but what's wrong with "I'm angry"? Finally, read Pilger's piece in today's Counterpunch. He tells of Israeli soldiers defecating on Palestinian children's art pieces. Your tax dollars at work.

10:30 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Chopped-

Sorry, I've read the revs, but didn't keep a list. Alan Taylor is one, I think. Also check out the Gopnik article in the New Yorker I referred to a short while back (scroll back). And try putting American Revolution into Amazon.

mb

10:46 AM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

It's damn hard to chose which stories to post there are so many of them. I'm new to this so I hope I'm tracking. Whether or not I'm on the right road I have enjoyed other's posts/comments.

Since I previously called this guy my choice for celebrity douchebag:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/onpolitics/2017/07/10/dwayne-johnson-the-rock-for-president/465900001/

Another cell phone 'mishap?'

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/07/11/texas-girl-electrocuted-while-using-cellphone-bathtub/467225001/

Chris Hedges knocks it out of the park imo,

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/eating_our_way_to_disease_201707091

I took his suggestion and watched Cowspiracy on Netflix came away thinking damn we're fucked try getting Texas cattlemen to stop producing beef! I like Mr. Hedges he is to me an honest and true reporter/journalist and seems to me equally willing to after liberals as conservatives (not that either live up to their professed convictions)

10:53 AM  
Anonymous Cierra said...

https://www.livescience.com/59633-2017-report-on-world-happiness.html

+++
Costa Rica, 83
Panama, 82
Philippines, 82
Uzbekistan, 82
Ecuador, 81
Guatemala, 81
Mexico, 81
Norway, 81
Chile, 80
Colombia, 80
Costa Rica, 83 Panama, 82 Philippines, 82 Uzbekistan, 82 Ecuador, 81 Guatemala, 81 Mexico, 81 Norway, 81 Chile, 80 Colombia, 80

The United States ranked 38, with an index score of 75, tying with eight other countries: Luxembourg, Germany, Bolivia, Brazil, Austria, the United Kingdom, Mali and South Africa, Gallup reported.
+++

TO PARAGUAY !

11:48 AM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Jeremy McNack, 25, partially naked, his hands covered in feces, robs a gas station in Kansas City, MO:

http://abc11.com/news/naked-man-accused-of-robbing-gas-station-damaging-cars/2175004/

Brissa Dominguez, 25, arrested for kicking police officer while nude:

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/crime--law/new-naked-instagram-model-jailed-after-kicking-florida-officers/hOtW6NTBnoLhoQj9HjTjON/

Lately, my mind has been preoccupied w/the annals of American douchebaggery, Hall of Fame version. I would very much like to know if Tracey McCloud ever discovered some decent Chinese food in the greater Cleveland area? Did Lorenzo Riggins finally receive his seven McDoubles? Did Rachel Butterbaugh get to have sex w/a willing husband despite his bite scars when he refused her amatory exertions? Has Brittany Carulli been rehabilitated, released, and placed back into American society? Did she get a new hairdo? And what about cute little Erin Schmalz? Did she ever get promoted at Shooters Grill in Rifle, CO? Has Freddie Wadsworth figured out that there are more important things in life than fucking goats? The list of unanswered questions are many, Wafers.

Miles

12:28 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Esteban-

Americans are wonderful people, teenagers included.

Cierra-

Apparently there are more than one world happiness indices, as the ones I've read over the past few yrs put Mexico at 5.

Jeff-

I confess, I too ponder these crucial questions, several hrs a day.

mb

1:05 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Hi all-

A few days ago The Independent reported that Noam Chomsky stated that "urgent and dedicated" direct activism is needed to combat Donald Trump's policies, particularly on nuclear weapons and climate change. He also said that "ridicule is not enough." I go further in that pussy hats, street marches, late night comedy and Russia, Russia, Russia! are totally counterproductive. But will the progs listen to either me or Chomsky? Hell, no!

Now on the domestic non-political front, a woman woke up the morning after she had a row with her husband only to find he passed away on the couch she ordered him to sleep upon.

He had been working too many hours, basically working himself to death, even "working extra shifts as a carpet cleaner so that he cold save money to take her to Prague for their anniversary on July 3." Yet Americans still think that hard work is an unalloyed good. Go figure.

2:52 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

Just how far gone is America? So far gone that the Department of Defense has denied any responsibility for providing medical care to the military personnel who responded to aid the Japanese after the 2011 tsunami who have become sick due to exposure to radiation leaked from the Fukushima nuclear facility. The Japanese themselves have become so embarrassed by America's lack of responsibility for its own soldiers and sailors that the former prime minister has personally set up a private relief fund:

“I felt I had to do something to help those who worked so hard for Japan,” he said. “Maybe this isn’t enough, but it will express our gratitude, that Japan is thankful.”

https://wemeantwell.com/blog/2017/07/11/abandoned-by-u-s-government-irradiated-servicemembers-turn-to-japan-for-help/

Countless billions being wasted on weapons systems that don't work and to fight losing wars so defense contractors can get rich, and not one cent to help in this case. It should be noted that this one isn't on Trump, as the Pentagon made its decision back in 2014 when Obama will still president:

"In a final report to Congress, the Department of Defense claimed personnel were exposed to less radiation than a person would receive during an airplane flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo."

5:00 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Chris Christie's next occupation..."Talk Radio Douchebag."


http://www.cbsnews.com/news/chris-christie-calls-constituent-a-bum-after-he-was-called-a-fat-on-radio-show/

5:12 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Sri Berman,

Below is a good column by Jim Kunstler on the dysfunction of America's thinking class. His column is centered around the concept of "the Overton Bubble".

http://kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/good-people-really/

Overton Bubble column:

http://thefutureprimaeval.net/the-overton-bubble/

Himanshu

6:52 PM  
Blogger comrade simba said...

Wonder if progs wanna put their money where their mouth is and support a progressive tax?
http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/seattle-council-to-vote-today-on-income-tax-on-the-wealthy/

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Rorschach said...

Hey Morris, I'm currently putting together a reading list, and I think, in the near future, you should make a blog post listing your most highly recommended books. You had written about Immoderate Greatness a few years back, and afterwards, I purchased it and found it to be an extraordinary read. I would've never known about the book if you hadn't written about it. So I think it'd be of benefit to future readers if you made a list of what you consider to be "must reads". You can do as you please of course, I'm just throwing that idea out there.

PS: You ever get around to reading Road to Ruin by James Rickards?

4:03 AM  
Blogger Nesim Watani said...

@Gunnar Burton

The Cowspiracy documentary is nothing but vegan bs with some kernels of truth. The factory farming method is destructive, however, so is the mono-crop of modern day agriculture. Much of the American Prairie land has been destroyed to produce grains. Because polyculture cannot produce the yields the land is devoted to huge monoculture plots that are incredibly vulnerable to pests and disease.

Monoculture in and of itself is completely unsustainable. It destroys the soil, it destroys the land, and destroys the biodiversity of the ecosystem. People who advocate for the end of eating meat are completely oblivious that the only reason our monoculture agri-businesses are even alive and States like California haven't been reduced to a desert is due to fossil fuels. Since, Monoculture destroys the soil and farmers have to rely on more and more chemicals and fertilizers which cause more soil erosion.

The hard truth is that lifestyle changes are not going to change the world. That neoliberal garbage infects even the left who claims to be against Neoliberalism. The fact is the commodification of food is the real issue. Turning the production of food into a for-profit system has destroyed much of the land of the world and that vegan propaganda won't save a thing.

8:46 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Ror-

Yes, I recently finished Rickards. I made the same prediction in 2009, that we wd have another crash and that it cd possibly finish us off. Except that he has a lot of evidence for that view.

mb

9:46 AM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Esteban: That shit really drives me nuts, the kicker is this:

"...implicated six students and recent graduates of a prestigious Honolulu prep school whose alumni include former president Barack Obama."

It wasn't a bunch of rednecks shootin' crows after drinkin' a case of Icehouse, rather the elite of the preppy elite and their compassionless and cold-blooded kids.

9:59 AM  
Blogger Eric Green said...

Interesting, even if it concludes with the usual hope-n-change pablum:

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/07/why-young-chinese-people-are-abandoning-ambition-for-sang-culture

10:35 AM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

Someone commenting on that Kunstler article complained that poor spellers receive exemptions in schools now. Here's part of her comment: "What’s worse? – a child who doesn’t right his paper at all..."

Sorry Nesim Watani, we herbivores are not oblivious to the destructive consequences of monoculture. I'm not sure why you're suggesting that vegans and vegetarians somehow support Big Agriculture, but your insinuation is nonsense.

About a year ago I tried posting a few times (my posts didn't make it to Belman's fortress of solitude) about The Mandibles and Riddley Walker, which I had just read. While Shriver's forecast seemed plausible, her method was painful. What George Orwell in Nineteen Eighty Four accomplished with a wisp of dusty wind an an odour of boiled cabbage, Shriver attempted with page after page of economists sitting around the supper table, discussing financial policy.

Riddley Walker was far more compelling, if only for its invented language. What I found most interesting is that Hoban decided that the brand name "Rizla" would be one of the few English words to survive centuries without change.

11:15 AM  
Anonymous Matt S. said...

Dear dr. B,

One of the thing I think makes Americans stupid is the inability to communicate in a foreign language. The Fake News media is real from both progressive and conservative sides. The mainstream media in English (esp. from American sources) is absolute brainwashing. They are telling lies and more lies with such vigor that rivals any great propaganda machine in the history. Everything that is written out there only aims at making apologies for capitalist ideology and to defame every foreign regime that doesn't do it like America. I dread reading newspaper nowadays.

11:48 AM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Well DJT Jr's emails with or about Russians are out and the foreign policy bureaucrats and the p.c. liberal progressives are dancing on Donald Trump's grave while he's still alive and kicking. So here are two YouTube vids (yes, I know they come from prog sources, but when they're right, they're right) that illustrate how the Donald's problems have just increased hyperbolically. The decline is accelerating and Putin or his cronies apparently had given us a push.

Why Donald Trump Jr's emails change everything.

Ex KGB Spy Jack Barsky Is MIND-BOGGLED By Email Trump Jr Received Before Meeting W Russian Lawyer

Now we get to see the disabling of the United States as a major power on the world stage, at least until the Christian Talibanner Mike Pence gets into the Oval Office. And it could be worse. :^)

Onward and Downward! :^D

12:46 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

@ Nasim Watani appreciate reply, even if lifestyle change ended climate change tomorrow 0.0001% of population would probably comply.

I am poor, I live amoug the downtrodden, don't own a car rely on bike, bus, and walking (a far healthier lifestyle). In my post industrial hometowm probably 1/3 are employed 1/3 retired and the rest on some kind of public assistance. Of course my class of people are the least able to lead social revolt/societal change. Yesterday on bus I witnessed a glimmer of decency. A woman in obvious pain borded the bus to go to hospital driver told her he couldn't help her offered to call ambulance. She got on anyway. When we got to the stop outside hospital she couldn't get off the bus. A man and woman in front of me took her in their arms and escorted her to the ER. Human kindness hasn't been completely driven from all of us it's rare but when I see it usually it exists amoung the poor.
Emily Dickenson had it right:

Much Madness is divinest Sense-
To a discerning Eye-
Much Sense-the starkest Madness-
‘Tis the Majority
In this, as All, prevail-
Assent- and you are sane-
Demur- you’re straightway dangerous-
And handled with a Chain

Most poor folk face this dilemma the better of us probably demur but though we assent we can still remain kind.

2:22 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Eric-

Check out my bk on Japan for similar situation.

Gunnar-

Pls watch length, thank you.

mb

2:51 PM  
Anonymous Sonny Abraham said...

Re: Rickards' book

Ordering this now. I thought his previous book "The Death of Money: The Coming Collapse of the International Monetary System" was incredibly provocative.

Hadn't heard of this new work, thanks guys!

2:54 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

jardi-

Word has it that MB, Minister of Total Collapse (MTC), designated Chris Christie to be the Official White House Food Taster
(OWHFT).

Wafers should make Jared "answer to a higher authority":

http://jewishnews.timesofisrael.com/fox-news-makes-jared-kosher-blunder/

Bucket O' Urine dept.:

Leigh Ann Sepelyak, 38, sets fire to her boyfriend. She then uses her own urine to douse the flames:

http://www.post-gazette.com/local/east/2017/07/10/leigh-ann-sepelyak-Penn-Hills-woman-douses-boyfriend-with-urine-after-lighting-him-on-fire/stories/201707100155

Miles

3:23 PM  
Anonymous George said...

The Jewish Chronicle describes 'The Strange Death of Europe' as 'Timely and important - an engrossing read.'
A sort of WEFer tome [read: why Europe fails]
https://www.thejc.com/culture/books/book-review-douglas-murray-1.441286

3:36 PM  
Anonymous Harry said...

Are you still writing a study of symoblogy, Professor Berman?

- HD

4:30 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Harry-

I didn't know that I was. Keep in mind, however, that I'm at an advanced age and fairly senile.

George-

Thank you. But the name is Wafer, spelled exactly like that. When people write in Wefer or WEFER or WAFer or even WAFER, I weep. Meanwhile, the JC review 'blames' Muslims for the death of Europe, when in fact 2 world wars fairly polished it off by 1945, sans Muslim immigration. Many argued at that pt that Europe had self-destructed, and had no purchase on moral or Enlightenment values.

Jeff-

Leigh Ann: my kinda gal. Anyone stashing urine away in those quantities is deserving of the highest Wafer respect. Wd have been better, however, if she had applied it to Hillary's shoes.

mb

6:54 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Eric- These Sang youth sound like the hikikomori in Japan or the kids going into the Zhognan mountains to become hermits. What I don’t understand is why they throw themselves into video games and anime rather than more purposeful pursuits. If you’re going to reject society, don’t be half-assed about it. Take up art, music, organize yourselves and create something of a small-scale neo-traditional society to serve as an example for the masses still toiling away in the system hoping to “improve their lot in life” but getting nowhere. Imagine building on the values embodied by these modern-day hermits and creating a society based upon mutual respect and meaningful activity.

George- That article is little more than the same old anti-immigrant tripe being peddled by the right. Rather than look in the mirror, Europeans, much like Americans, would rather scapegoat a couple billion people, forgetting that there would be no need for Muslims to immigrate to Europe had the US not been bombing their countries and destabilizing their governments for decades. It’s the same old story: 80 years ago it was the Jews; today it’s the Muslims. If your way of life is predicated on consuming all the world’s resources and exploiting the labor of those who have nothing, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise when the gravy train finally comes to a stop.

10:01 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

We are descending back to the DARK AGES.


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4688194/Evangelical-pastor-prays-Donald-Trump-Oval-Office.html

10:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Waferinos-

A wonderful feminist film: "Queen to Play" (Joueuse, in the original French), with Sandrine Bonnaire and Kevin Kline. It's abt class conflict as well. This is a real gem.

mb

10:11 AM  
Blogger Nesim Watani said...

@ al-Qa'bong

-Sorry Nesim Watani, we herbivores are not oblivious to the destructive consequences of monoculture. I'm not sure why you're suggesting that vegans and vegetarians somehow support Big Agriculture, but your insinuation is nonsense.-

Obviously, you do not because you just responded with a typical "I have no argument so I am just going to dismiss.". The Vegan argument has been for a long time that a vegan diet would save the world. This is the ENTIRE argument of Cowspiracy, is that vegan diet will save the world and meat production is killing the world. It is a lie. A bad lie at that. Second, in order to have a world built upon a vegan diet, it can only exist because of Big Ag.

Do you want to know why? Because you simply cannot produce the amount of food needed for such a diet on polyculture. Monoculture requires Big Ag because it REQUIRES an entity that has the resources to pour into fixing the destructive practices of monoculture. Polyculture will not create the yields, it will not be as profitable, and it will not solve the issues.

History has proven that agriculture depends fully on fossil fuels and the worst part is we haven't even gotten into water issues.

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Hi all!

On latest contretemps of Russiagate: it turns out the handful of Russians who had contact with DJT Jr, Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort had their own ideas: that the Trump team would lift certain sanctions that Obamabush imposed in 2012. Apparently Trump & Co. couldn't or wouldn't deal--by the evidence we have, they were expecting the Russians to just fork over the dirt on Hillary! Dumb, really dumb. So in the end they got nothing. So what do we have besides a big fat nothingburger for this scandal? Only the condiments... what Russian dressing is to a Reuben sandwich (yum!). So where's the rest of the damn sandwich?

Well Greer now has started a series of monthly blogposts on climate change and global weirding. He capped off his first article on the subject with a huge whopper... that in 200 years or so Magnolias will be growing in Ohio and Appletrees will be growing in Greenland. Even though the climate zones seem to be moving north that quickly, the science is established that the biomes cannot keep up.

2:39 PM  
Blogger Himanshu said...

Dear Dr. Berman,

A few echoes of Ch-4, WAF in Fred Reed's recent column titled "Fun with Slavery: Dark Spots in a Shining Sea of Twaddle":

https://fredoneverything.org/fun-with-slavery-dark-spots-in-a-shining-sea-of-twaddle/

Himanshu

3:53 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

No need to expound on this:

https://www.cdc.gov/mentalhealth/basics.htm


Except to say I wonder where you find the 17%? I'm guessing it isn't where most people look.

4:31 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Monoculture is one of the most destructive practices when it comes to long-term impact on the environment and our food supply. Monoculture destroys soil biodiversity and results in the spraying of numerous chemicals. This causes in a domino effect that moves up the food web/chain, impacting both autotrophs and heterotrophs.

Personally, I am a vegetarian who eats eggs and milk. My diet is purely for health purposes. In modern food production, heterotrophs accumulate a higher concentration of toxins due to being higher up in the food web/chain.

4:41 PM  
Anonymous Harry said...

I do apologize, sir. The subject I meant to refer to, was Surrealism:

"You know, I've been thinking abt possibly doing a book on the Surrealist movement, so recently read a # of bks on that subject. Best of the lot: Calvin Tomkins' biography of Marcel Duchamp. In fact, I'm halfway thru my 2nd read."

Taken from the comments section from blog posting 12/8/2014. Although I'm sure symbology would be baked in there. In what way were you to cover surrealism?

Anyway, I was just happy to see the mention of Duchamp, rather than the typical Dali. I was always more charmed by the surreal visions of say, Max Ernst or Joan Miro, or Kahlo or Magritte. These seemed more in touch with something like folkloric vision, whereas Dali seemed to be this explosive Raphael rock-star. He was also obsessed w/ making $$$, by any means. Would sign and sell blank canvasses so someone could sell anything as a "Dali"

https://www.thelocal.es/20170713/salvador-dali-to-be-exhumed-july-20th-for-paternity-test

9:43 PM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

Interesting analysis of the 2016 election.

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/06/new-study-shows-what-really-happened-in-the-2016-election.html

In my opinion the most interesting results state that people who are classified as fiscally conservative and socially liberal are overrepresented among the wealthy elites who set the political agenda while “populists” who are classified as fiscally liberal and socially conservative are a much larger group but are underrepresented in politics. Trump won by dominating the populist vote.

Also, there are few libertarians among the voting populace but the movement has a lot of funding and hardcore activists so they have a bigger voice than their numbers would seem to warrant.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Sarasvati said...

Paul sent this link to me - NBC News - Earth Goes Wild:

http://www.nbcnews.com/pop-culture/celebrity/beyonce-posts-first-photo-newborn-twins-earth-goes-wild-n782841

Cynical as I am, I found this hard to believe so I found another article, one which said that the parents, Beyoncé and Jay-Z, filed trademark applications for the twins’ names: Sir Carter and Rumi.

O&D

11:23 AM  
Blogger Esca Dreg said...


Does amerikn (verb) make people stupid? Is there something in the water here?
http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us-canada-40600272/why-are-iraqi-christians-facing-deportation-from-us
http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/05/us/undocumented-husband-deported/index.html

Himanshu, good article by Fred Reed on the false narrative of Civil War and the folklore of emancipation of slaves.
Wafers would like 'The Empire of Necessity: Slavery, Freedom, and Deception in the New World' -by Greg Grandin.

​"​I have a lot of beliefs and I live by none of ’em. That’s just the way I am. They’re just my beliefs. I just like believing them. I like that part. They’re my little “believies.” They make me feel good about who I am. But if they get in the way of a thing I want, or I want to jack off or something, I fuckin’ do that.​" ​~ ​Louis CK

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Daddy Issues said...

On the topic of surrealism, "Twin Peaks, The Return" has been exceptional. The show is an entertaining mix of surrealism, satire, and horror.

Here's a taste. A must if you are a fan of The Platters.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRy4Agi1jxw&t=416s

2:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

I'm getting tired of constantly waiting for the world to catch up with me. What's a Great Seer to do?:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/14/globalisation-the-rise-and-fall-of-an-idea-that-swept-the-world

More than 20 yrs ago, I was giving lectures to the effect that globalization was the latest religion, and a pile of horseshit. Typically, I was politely dismissed as a nut case. In Guadalajara, Mario Vargas Llosa sat 3 meters in front of me and glowered at me during the entire lecture. His son, Alvaro, ran around in a 3-piece suit, his eyes glazed, promoting the "new truth." In the fullness of time, the true believers (see Eric Hoffer) proved to be a collection of turkeys, and the "nut case" rt on target. When will they learn, O Lord? I tell you, being a seer is no easy job.

mb

3:04 PM  
Anonymous Tim Lukeman said...

Harry, there's a reason that Andre Breton renamed Dali with the anagram "Avida DOllars" ...

Latest in the annals of Selfie Selfishness:

http://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/whats-hot/woman-destroys-dollar200000-worth-of-art-in-pursuit-of-a-selfie/ar-BBEoJg6?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=spartanntp

While I haven't posted here in awhile, I have been reading the posts. It's just one damn thing after another, isn't it?

Let me recommend the 2001 novel "Scorch" by A. D.Nauman, described thusly:

"In the future world of Scorch, America is run by a 'corporacracy.' Three conglomerates have taken control not by force but by manipulating common beliefs and values through the media, and particularly by playing on Americans’ fears of Big Brother. Consumerism and privatization have run amok in this landscape of flashing screens and subtle brainwashing, a world where even city streets and public schools are run by big business."

Where have I been? Spending more & more time in Nature, or reading poetry, or making art, or writing to friends by hand (my cursive skills have returned very nicely), and even gearing up to try & learn to play a musical instrument. I want to try & get back my high school Spanish & go beyond it, too. Wish me luck!

3:56 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Oops, forgot the link: http://www.ecosophia.net/july-2017-stormwatch-climate-change/

The Boston Globe finally wakes up to the obvious... but they're still crying, "Russia, Russia, Russia!"

Fools and Hucksters Are Governing this Country. Here's the money quote:

"But no matter the legal fallout, this is an American tragedy. Not for Donald Trump or his son Donald Trump Jr., or his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, all of whom have consistently shown themselves to be contemptuous of the rule of law, America’s political traditions and values, and the American people themselves. They will get what they deserve. The tragedy is that a man of such ill repute could ever have been elected president and will — with the complicity of gutless congressional Republicans — remain there for the foreseeable future."

I have to say, though, that the American people got what they so richly deserve--this country is now governed by the type most Americans actually look up to!

4:14 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Of course...it makes perfect sense...
because singers, actors, and athletes are automatically fully qualified to hold political office and execute the required duties.


http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2017/07/13/kid-rock-confirms-senate-run-people-are-sick-and-tired-of-the-bullshit/


https://www.thewrap.com/kid-rock-us-senate-michigan/

5:16 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

The No Shit Sherlock Institute has just released the results of a study that shows using a dumbphone while walking leads to accidents:

"More than 50 percent of the people polled in the study say they use their phone while walking to talk, text or read."

http://www.kiro7.com/news/local/study-says-accidents-caused-by-distracted-walking-on-the-rise/559930426?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

Meanwhile, watch and enjoy as a fucking douchebag destroys $200,000 worth of art while taking a selfie. The exhibitor, however, is not completely blameless:

...the Los Angeles Times ran a preview of the show back in May that was headlined “Oh, the selfies you’ll make at L.A.’s 14th Factory, where the art is so social. Our Instagram tour.”

http://gizmodo.com/watch-a-woman-destroy-200-000-worth-of-art-while-takin-1796906705

5:16 PM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr B:

Here's a story that gripped the Philly area for the past week- two cousins are charged with the murder of four men: "With his cousin Sean Kratz, 20, of Philadelphia, he burned three of the bodies in a metal tank he called 'the pig roaster' then buried them on his family’s Solebury Township estate, according to court filings released Friday."

http://www.philly.com/philly/news/pennsylvania/bucks-missing-men-sean-kratz-conspirator-20170714.html

5:23 PM  
Anonymous al-Qa'bong said...

Hello Wafers:

I just finished reading George Grant's lectures on Nietzsche, entitled Time as History.
I'd recommend it. I've seen Grant mentioned here a few times - Wafers would like his slant on things.

@ Daddy Issues I find that the best way to watch Twin Peaks is to forget about trying to figure it out, but to just let it wash over you. I played the Ink Spots' version of "My Prayer" on my last show...and threw in a "Gotta Light?" as part of my intro to it.

6:02 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/epidemic-of-violence-against-health-care-workers-plagues-hospitals/

Who needs sci-fi? Is this what it's like to provide medical care to a zombie? Oh, how much worse it's going to get...

6:53 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

Dearest MB-

Lonely is the head who wears the Great Seer hat, MB. You saw the unforeseen consequences of the flawed neoliberal consensus when nobody wanted to see it; now we are witnessing the possible crack-up and collapse of the fuckers who run the world. You hafta luv that, no? Perhaps you'll get invited to Davos next year. Imagine the Gucci's you could hose down.

Miles

ps: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/07/13/nyc-subway-rider-wakes-up-to-man-urinating-on-her-face.html

7:01 PM  
Anonymous Stefano said...

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/13/us/texas-sword-knives-law-trnd/index.html

open carry sword laws in TX

6:28 AM  
Anonymous Moishe Pupik said...

Anybody else remember Fred's Pastrami King from Brooklyn?:
https://www.city-journal.org/html/my-political-reeducation-15318.html

Moishe P.

11:09 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jeff-

If only it had been Hillary! Talk abt a waste of gd urine.

Birn, Bill-

Along with the urine incident, I hafta say: Americans are a great people! They are fundamentally kind and intelligent. I love them.

Turkey-

Check out post entitled "Finally, the class war..." And keep busting those turkeys!

Tim-

Welcome back, and gd luck with Spanish and guitar. I continue to work at both.

mb

11:19 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: Speaking of turkeys:

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/07/11/ending-ronald-reagan-lie

What an asshole that guy was. And regularly, on polls that ask Americans who their favorite president is, he comes out on top.

11:21 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Turk-

Cdn't run it (24-hr rule).

Moishe-

Gd to have u back. I don't remember Fred's, but I'm wondering if your pupik is lint-free, these days.

mb

2:47 PM  
Anonymous social-skills said...

MB - I'm getting senile too. I like to think possibly latent autism and just a harmless idiosyncracy but you never know.

4:38 PM  
Anonymous Transatlantic said...


One of the thing I think makes Americans stupid is the inability to communicate in a foreign language. The Fake News media is real from both progressive and conservative sides.
------------------------------------------------------
It doesn't help, but it's I don't think it is in the top 5 even. One of the greatest factors is the propaganda pushed out by US MSM and their partner organizations elsewhere.
I moved to Germany 10 years ago and I no longer recognize what I read in Zeit or Sueddeutsche anymore. They aren't issuing retractions every other week like CNN or NYT, but the influence from the latter is strong, right down to the buzzwords and talking points. In the case of the US, a continually misinformed populace that never learned to critically think is doomed, regardless of how many languages they speak.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Gunnar Burton said...

Went to a Sunday school class people were asked their favorite historical figure a lady replied hers was Reagan because "he was such a spiritual man who told the truth what we needed to hear." Walked out will never go back.

6:44 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

MB -- while I totally agree with Sachs about Reagan, I noticed he couldn't avoid a little delusional prog speak at the end:

"My own belief? We will soon swing back to an era of grass-roots democracy, led especially by young people, in which public activism will trump big money in politics. Stay tuned."

What's he smoking, anyway? We know most Americans are dumber than the asphalt under a dumpster and will vote for whomever the teevee tells them to vote. Then you have that survey I posted here a few months ago which showed that millennials were MORE open to the idea of replacing democracy with military rule than any other age group.

7:17 PM  
Blogger jjarden said...

When are parents going to start having to do hard time for raising Crazy children?


https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/07/14/world/europe/london-acid-attack.html?referer=

7:33 PM  
Blogger Sarasvati said...

Morris, I went to the Common Dreams link about Ronald Reagan, and the following article caught my eye:

"Trump Bet Americans Would Like His Un-Presidential Antics. He May Be Right. Is America one big con game?"

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/07/14/trump-bet-americans-would-his-un-presidential-antics-he-may-be-right

Quote: “Of course, no one wants to come right out and say that America is a land of hustlers….”

Except for you, of course. Unfortunately the writer didn’t credit you, but one of the commenters, DonMidwest (DM, are you here on this blog under another name?) discusses your work and your blog.

7:39 AM  
Anonymous Birney Zouave said...

Dr. B:

The author in this opinion piece wonders, "Is America one big con game?" Well, duh. Interestingly, he includes a quote by Walter McDougall- “Americans take it for granted that ‘everyone’s got an angle,’ except maybe themselves.”

http://billmoyers.com/story/donald-trump-learned-pt-barnum/

7:41 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Turkey buster,
Yes, Trump and company are fixed on destroying the government or as Bannon put it, the administrative state. Americans should feel lucky that that's the only thing being destroyed. The US actually destroys people, bridges, water supplies, agriculture, communication networks, leaving in place right wing death squads and/or total chaos. In short, the karma doesn't go nearly far enough. But then again the way people treat each other here the US experiences a kind of holocaust everyday but subtle.

7:56 AM  
Blogger Kanye Cyrus said...

I hope Amazon drivers worldwide take example on their UK colleague, especially if around Hillary's neighbourhood:
http://gizmodo.com/amazon-delivery-driver-drops-off-a-bag-of-poop-on-famil-1796950900

12:27 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Hi y'all!

MB - thanks! :)

This from upscale Hingham, Mass.: Multi-town SWAT team causes death of a 26-year-old son of affluent parents in their affluent neighborhood. The Hingham police said they were doing everything by protocol--hence the overkill and the denial by the police to let the parents be within view and earshot of their son. Here is the choicest comment: "ET207/15/17 08:25 PM, Protocol versus common sense. Nice job Hingham."

I know, I know, why didn't they shoot the parents... and the family dog? Because they haven't started that in minority communities, yet, I suppose.

Dan-

I wish it was the Deep State that was being destroyed, instead. But once it gets kicked off the world stage I predict it'll wreak the same sort of havoc here.

3:44 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Gunnar-

Cdn't run it (24-hr rule). You seem to be having problems observing this, and I can't keep reminding you. In future, I'll just delete messages that violate the rule.

mb

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Danny Ellsberg said...

Reminds me of what a friend said the other day: "Is it just me, or it more difficult to live in America than other places?"

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Vincent in Auvers said...

Turkey- Actually, according to this article, the police kill a dog in America every 98 minutes. I'm sure the parents would have got it too if they happened to be a shade off white. Pretty interesting to see this stuff happening even in the affluent suburbs. Reminds me of Goya's Third of May or Picasso's Massacre in Korea, only now they're doing it to themselves.

Here's another instance of things not being quite as they appear up at the top:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/15/business/lawyers-addiction-mental-health.html

Danny- It's only difficult because there really isn't much of a middle ground for normal human beings to occupy. You're either an insular workaholic making a killing but living a soulless existence in a rich enclave or you suffer with the wretched underclass created by the former. The whole country is essentially one giant factory farm. I recently saw Woman in the Dunes by Hiroshi Teshigahara and thought it could probably serve as a pretty apt summary of life in modern-day America.

12:52 AM  
Blogger jjarden said...

That must have been one HELL of a Fart!!


http://wncn.com/2017/07/16/passed-gas-forces-passengers-from-plane-at-rdu-spokesperson-says/

5:16 AM  
Anonymous Tom Servo said...

A rise in narcissism could be one of the main causes of America’s political and economic crises.

http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2017/06/28/a-rise-in-narcissism-a-root-of-americas-crisis/

8:26 AM  
Anonymous James Allen said...

Just another night in middle America. Sorta. This time, it was a white woman who was not protected and not served.

A 911 call Saturday night in Minneapolis ended with the caller dead; she'd heard a disturbance coming from the alley behind her house. The officer riding shotgun--there's an apt expression for you--shot the woman as she approached the driver's side to report what she'd called about. As it turns out, neither officer's body camera was turned on during the incident.

http://m.startribune.com/woman-killed-in-officer-involved-shooting-in-south-minneapolis/434782213/

9:31 AM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

James--one little tidbit I noted in your police shooting story:

"The woman, Justine Damond, from Sydney, Australia, and her fiancé lived in the 5000 block of Washburn."

This is why Trump is doing the world a favor by instituting his travel ban. If a white woman from Australia can be summarily executed in a place like Minnesota while just trying to report a crime, what hope is there for a Muslim or a person of color? I just hope Trump broadens the travel ban to include every other country as quickly as possible.

Meanwhile, did you guys know "car surfing" was a new fad? Let's hope it catches on like wildfire:

http://www.king5.com/news/local/serious-crash-blocks-southbound-i-405-lanes/457269634?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

1:00 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

While Americans continue to kill each other off at an alarming rate, often assisted by the police, I still feel the #s are too low. We are not a nation of wimps, after all. I have written Trump asking him to institute 2 practices, assuming he approves my plan of arming every individual living in the US, regardless of age, with a small arsenal.

1. Once a week, say every Saturday, anyone living in the US is encouraged to kill as many people as they want, w/o there being any criminal charges or legal consequences. While they can use guns or AK-47's, we suggest using drones or nuclear devices.

2. Also once a week--maybe Wednesday, to liven things up--the police have license to shoot anyone they please; again w/o incurring any criminal charges. They are not restricted to people on the street. If they want to enter someone's house and gun them down like a dog, they shd feel free to do what makes them feel gd.

Trumpi is a gun-oriented individual, so I am expecting a positive response. Stay tuned for further developments.

mb

3:17 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: I forgot to add, that it is required, when you rub someone out, to yell, "For the Cause!"

In addition, I think we need a Love Thy Neighbor Day. Stats indicate that most Americans have no idea who is living next door to them and don't give a shit anyway. The idea of LTND, say every Sunday, is to go next door w/a machete in hand, and when yr neighbor answers the door, lop his head off, while yelling, "Take that, you fucking twit!"

God, I'm cooking with Crisco.

mb

3:37 PM  
Anonymous senility-update said...

So after talking geo-politics with Americans the last few years I've been accused several times of having Asperger's syndrome - god to think I thought it was latent autism that was throwing people off. I think we can see where this is all headed - early onset dementia morphing into full blown schizophrenia - i.e. less cognitive dissonance from the political circus.

5:49 PM  
Anonymous James Watrous said...

Dr. Berman,

As much as I hope you are wrong about America being in decline I fear that you're probably right. Also, I just sent my brother THE TWILIGHT OF AMERICAN CULTURE for his birthday. Hopefully he reads it.

6:33 PM  
Anonymous Capt. Spaulding said...

Thought you might find the following interesting. Notice that nowhere in the article do the authors of the academic piece ever discuss evaluating the quality of said research, only the identity of the scholars.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2017/07/16/feminist-scientists-say-citing-research-by-straight-white-men-promotes-a-system-of-oppression/?utm_term=.8863248b85bc

6:48 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps2: Americans are unhappy w/themselves and their lives. They eagerly bought a load of dogshit abt the American Dream and it didn't work out, so now they sit around in a condition of suppressed rage. The intelligent thing to do is to explore that: do meditation, psychotherapy, or whatever, so that you can figure out where it hurts and why. Studying a bit of American history also wdn't hurt. But Americans won't do this because they are not very intelligent, and the usual pattern they follow is to project that pain outward onto other people (Jews, always the convenient target, but we can certainly include blacks and Hispanics; and then there are Muslims and Chinese people...). What I am proposing in these let's-kill-everyone scenarios is that we cut to the chase: simply recognize that our fellow-countrymen aren't going to do any historical study (which typically involve the use of Big Words, very difficult for the avg American to grasp) nor any inner work, so that we might as well take a short cut and get right down to acting out. It's already happening, of course; my idea here is to just accelerate it a tad. Americans will thus feel better, having discharged their rage; plus, in the fullness of time, there won't be too many Americans left to sit around suffering. I believe in pop psych they call this a win-win solution.

Capt.-

Clearly, the content or quality of the work doesn't matter. The issue is whether the person doing the research has a vagina. I say, bring it on. As in the case of Evergreen (what ever happened to that?), the dumber the nation, the faster the decline. This decline is also accelerated by the substitution of political correctness for real politics. Ya gotta love them progs!

Jas-

I share yr hope. It's just that in my experience, it's not very likely. But then I don't know yr brother, and miracles do happen, once in a great while. Keep us informed; let's make this a case study.

mb

7:26 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Front Page News Dept.:

This was listed as a "Top Story" by the Boston Globe:

https://www.boston.com/news/food/2017/07/17/mayo-or-butter-that-is-the-question-for-lobster-roll-enthusiasts

The real issue, I think, is how the editors of the Globe came to have lobster rolls inside their heads.

mb

10:01 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

The sufferings of the rich dept.:

https://www.boston.com/culture/celebs/2017/07/17/chris-evans-trolls-ann-coulter-on-twitter-over-airline-saga

10:04 PM  
Blogger comrade simba said...

A friend of mine says there is no situation that calling the police can't make worse. The news does tend to support this idea, eh?
Are cops fair game on FTC Day?

10:10 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

One of my favorite Jews is Asher Ginsberg, aka Ahad Ha'am. Ca. 1891 he wrote a bk called "Wrestling with Zion," in which he urged the Jews "not to provoke the anger of the native people [i.e., the Arabs in Palestine] by doing them wrong...we should be cautious in our dealings with a foreign people among whom we returned to live, to handle these people with love and respect and, needless to say, with justice and good judgment. And what do our brothers do? Exactly the opposite! They were slaves in their Diasporas, and suddenly they find themselves with unlimited freedom... This sudden change has planted despotic tendencies in their hearts, as always happens to former slaves. They deal with the Arabs with hostility and cruelty, trespass unjustly, beat them shamefully for no sufficient reason, and even boast about their actions. There is no one to stop the flood and put an end to this despicable and dangerous tendency. Our brothers indeed were right when they said that the Arab only respects he who exhibits bravery and courage. But when these people feel that the law is on their rival's side and, even more so, if they are right to think their rival's actions are unjust and oppressive, then, even if they are silent and endlessly reserved, they keep their anger in their hearts. And these people will be revengeful like no other."

Why is it that the greatest thinkers, the most prescient, get ignored?

mb

10:44 PM  
Blogger Janus said...

I haven't posted in a while, so apologies if somebody sent this through already.

But, I had the opportunity to hear photographer Lauren Greenfield speak to my place of employment (located in the US capital city of hustling, no less) about her new photography collection entitled "Generation Wealth." It's a lengthy compilation of years of work spent capturing Americans' pursuit of luxury and status, and also contains a more subtle critique of American values and priorities. I wouldn't call it a Wafer work, but it's not outside the realm. Chris Hedges makes an appearance, and there are numerous allusions to spiritual emptiness and the meaninglessness of much of American life. We also get a brief discussion of the fallout from the Reagan presidency.

Anyways, some really fascinating photographs and interviews. May be worth checking out if you can get your hands on it somehow.

http://www.thestoryinstitute.com/generation-wealth

http://archive.instituteartistmanagement.com/?49800532755136778403&EVENT=WEBSHOP_SEARCH&SEARCHMODE=OFFER&OFFER=1273

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/lauren-greenfield-generation-wealth-photos_us_58c18bc3e4b0d1078ca4cba4

12:07 AM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

Israel is, fundamentally speaking, very similar to America.

It started out as a colony created to advance Anglo interests. The Israeli Jews adopted an ideology similar to Manifest Destiny (i.e. Greater Israel). The natives (i.e. Arabs/Palestinians) are being killed off in an attempt to turn this ideology into reality.

Whether Israel will ultimately succumb to the same fate as America remains to be seen.

12:16 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Gig-

The US didn't begin w/a program of Manifest Destiny, and neither did Israel. All that came later. But in any case, the future doesn't look bright for either country.

Janus-

Loved this opening quote from Fran Lebowitz:

“Oh please, Americans do not hate the rich; they want to be them. Every American believes that they are the impending rich, and that will never change.”

I have been saying that over and over again, for yrs now; and this certainly goes a long way to explaining who we are, and why Trump Is Us.

mb

12:45 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

The digital life...no life at all:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/what-libraries-lost-when-they-threw-out-the-card-catalog/2017/07/07/5432821c-632f-11e7-a4f7-af34fc1d9d39_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-cards_hp-card-arts%3Ahomepage%2Fcard&utm_term=.e3c455c8ca2c

2:17 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Quite amazing, this:

http://hotair.com/archives/2017/07/17/minneapolis-police-shoot-unarmed-woman-pajamas-bodycams-off/

And yet, there have been thousands of killings of unarmed civilians by police since 2001, people who were doing nothing more than existing. This is of course random, not some kind of coordinated effort; and yet, it does put residents of the US on notice, that they can be killed at a moment's notice for no reason whatsoever. We live, now, in terror.

As for myself, I have never been afraid of any place I've been in Mexico, or while walking the streets of Mexico City. Not once in 11 years.

mb

2:41 AM  
Anonymous TINO said...

http://www.thedailybeast.com/president-trumps-air-war-kills-12-civilians-per-day

More unrestrained war crime

8:14 AM  
Blogger Michael Burgess said...

Hi Dr. Berman and Wafers:

According to Thom Hartmann, indentured servitude has been on the rise since the Reagan administration and neo-feudalism could very well be the future for the American people. The highlighting by the media of misbehavior by labor's leadership over the decades and the lack of a larger social/communal vision, hampered by fantasies of wealth and fame just around the corner, have combined to give organized labor a very bad reputation. I feel most Americans adults deserve neo-feudalism, after all we seem to be able to adapt to anything as long as the fantasy of great wealth and fame [American Dream]remains alive, rather than facing life as it is. Hopefully I won't live to see this coming system fully developed. I just really feel for young children who will grow up and have to endure this.

Mike Burgess

http://www.alternet.org/labor/indentured-servitude-returns-america?akid=15877.1923546.ikDniI&rd=1&src=newsletter1079817&t=5

9:16 AM  
Blogger Jack Lattemann said...

Good day Wafers and Waferettes everywhere from Cascadia. More news coverage appeared overnight of the cop shooting of an Australian woman in Minneapolis. Here is an example of how Australians view the “American Dream” these days:

http://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/australians-stunned-by-minneapolis-police-shooting-of-woman/

Meanwhile, at Evergreen College, professor Bret Weinstein made his first public appearance since the June campus turmoil and spoke to the college board of trustees:

http://www.king5.com/news/local/olympia/professor-talks-protests-with-trustees/456171108

9:33 AM  
Anonymous Pastrami and Coleslaw said...

More on the assassination by cop (took place only a few miles from where I live). The shooter was a rookie that shot through the door of the police car, he's also Somali. There is a shit-storm coming on this one.

I also here-by induct the victim's step-son honorary WAFer status:

“Basically, my mom is dead because a police officer shot her for reasons I don’t know, and I demand answers,” the slain woman's stepson-to-be, Zach Damond, said in a video posted to Facebook. “I’m so done with all this violence. It’s so much bull----.

“America sucks. These cops need to get trained differently. I need to move out of here.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/07/17/an-australian-family-tries-to-understand-why-an-american-police-officer-killed-their-daughter/

9:46 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Wafers-

Thank u4 yr input. All of this is truly horrible. There is only one upside to it, and that is that the US increasingly loses credibility in the eyes of the rest of the world. That cd turn out 2b an important factor in our decline.

mb

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Mike R. said...

Needles Everywhere! Heroin needles are winding up everywhere--must be from all that greatness and opportunity.

They hide in weeds along hiking trails and in playground grass. Some found in school classrooms, public restrooms too. They wash into rivers and float downstream to land on beaches. They line baseball dugouts, fast-food play areas, park benches, sidewalks, cafeterias, and streets. Syringes left by heroin users are turning up everywhere.

Moreover, in Portland, ME, officials have collected more than 700 needles so far this year, putting them on track to exceed the nearly 900 gathered in all of 2016. In March, San Francisco collected more than 13,000 syringes, compared with only about 2,900 the same month in 2016.

usa! usa! O & D.

10:08 AM  
Blogger alyosha said...

I worked for an Australian company, that was trying to become a world presence, by opening an office in California. For years, I'd heard about Australian attitudes toward the US, and got to experience them firsthand.

Aussies traditionally are great admirers of America, and view getting to America as making it in the Big Leagues (the office is California is an example). This is a long-standing attitude that only in the last few decades has come up against an America that's increasingly nuts and gun crazy, making them question, just a little, this ingrained admiration. I'm sure the killing in Minneapolis has sent the whole Australian continent into "WTF?" mode regarding this long standing admiration for America.

I teleconferenced almost daily with my coworkers Down Under. What came through is a people who are basically happy and carefree, even though they are on board with the whole idea of the American hustle, just not ratcheted up as fully as it is in the US.

11:15 AM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Mike R-

An impt part of pummeling is self-pummeling.

mb

1:56 PM  
Blogger Rosegarden said...

While waiting my turn at the audiologist's office yesterday, I was looking at the display case of things to care for my hearing aids (drying cases, cleaners, etc.) One of the items was a two inch yellow sticker with some paper work. You fill out your health information and put the paper in the glove compartment. The suggestion for the hearing impaired was to write “I can not hear you well. Look at me. Speak slowly and clearly.” The yellow Dot goes on the back windshield of your vehicle. The program is in conjunction with the State Police, local police, EMS workers, senior citizens groups, and the state of Pennsylvania. Supposedly everyone is now trained to look for the sticker on the back left windshield and the paperwork in the glove compartment. A small handmade sign on the shelf said:

Don’t Get Shot
Show the Dot

2:25 PM  
Anonymous Turkey-Buster said...

Hi y'all!

Today on The Automatic Earth there was a bit of discussion on ObamaCare and the US Senate's decision to just repeal it. No-one in DC is even talking about seriously controlling costs... that would require a health cares cost control board, a single-payer insurance scheme or even a more serious method of controlling costs, a national health service. But neither of these will ever be entertained by the pickpockets in Washington because that's socialism! No, Communism! Besides, the shoddy care doled out by the VA in recent years tells us exactly what to expect if we had an NHS here in the USA.

And apparently there are some links between the Steele Dossier the Clinton campaign and Russian intelligence.

Vincent in Auvers-

Turk, Turkey-Buster or Buster, please. Thank you. :^)

I read that article from the NY Times: very sobering. The USAian culture of working to get ahead is only fueling the addiction.

2:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Turk-

Just a note to say that all of us Wafers are grateful 2u 4 all the turkey-busting you've been doing in recent wks. Pls, don't stop!

Yr rt abt the NHS. It has its problems, but generally works for the Brits. Here, it wd be a disaster--like everything else--because it wd involve Americans. Several yrs ago, the late Ronald Dworkin published an article in the NYRB in which he asserted that there wasn't a single institution in the US that wasn't seriously corrupt. With turkeys at the helm, what else wd one expect? This is why yr busting work is so impt.

Rose-

The dot probably won't help much. American police like to kill people, and they hardly need a reason to do so. It may be a substitute for sex, I dunno. Furthermore, if you have this paper in yr glove compartment and reach for it, they will assume you are reaching for yr gun and blow u2 kingdom come.

mb

2:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

ps: This is a gd article, but it contains 2 major flaws:

1. Author doesn't understand that in terms of the course of history, Trump is doing exactly what he's supposed to be doing.

2. He thinks cascading into the abyss is a bad thing, when in truth--again, historically speaking--it's precisely what's called for.

I suppose he's a prog. Whatever. Anyway:

http://edition.cnn.com/2017/07/18/politics/trump-president-6-months/index.html

mb

3:10 PM  
Blogger Bill Hicks said...

The Minneapolis police shooting dramatically illustrates how misguided the Black Lives Matter campaign is. According to statistics, a slight majority of those killed by the police are white. Blacks do indeed get killed way out of proportion with their percentage of the population, but police harassment, abuse and unjust shootings are a problem that all Americans ought to (if they had anything in their skulls other than dogshit) be outraged about. By turning it into a race issue, BLM made it easy for authoritarian minded assholes to whip up a backlash that guarantees nothing will ever be done to stop it.

Let's also never forget that douchebag Obama let this issue fester for his entire second term while doing NOTHING. The only time he spoke up, it was on behalf of a black Harvard professor who merely suffered a little police rudeness, proving once again that the only people that fucking asshole ever cared about was his fellow elites.

Meanwhile, what's a babysitter to do when a 3-year old wets his pants? Why, break his arm, of course:

http://www.wftv.com/news/florida/baby-sitter-accused-of-breaking-arm-of-boy-3-who-wet-pants/562687596?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

3:38 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Bill-

Well...the penal system IS loaded against black people. As u pt out, they get killed way outta proportion to their % of the population. Ditto for incarceration. Penalties for smoking crack are much more severe than for snorting the powdered stuff. Blacks get the death sentence much more than whites--and so on. In short, much of it is indeed a race issue. The problem I have with BLM is the same one I have with pussy hats and virtually all protest movements here: no staying power. It's just the politics of orgasm, or instinct--over in a flash. Americans of all colors, genders, whatever, have no notion of how to build a political movement, and they have the attn span of a Trumpi. I wdn't be surprised if 80% or more of the black population wd not be able to say who Dylann Roof is, or Philando Castile--tho I cd be wrong. Political protest in America consists of getting excited over a specific event, screaming, jumping up and down, and then going dormant until the next event. This is the behavior of children.

4:10 PM  
Anonymous Cel-Ray Tonic said...

Haven't seen it yet, but:

http://www.avclub.com/article/let-us-compare-idiots-burn-after-reading-idiots-tr-258186

4:42 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Cel-

I did see it, many yrs ago. Very funny, really. Now, just a day in the (political) life.

mb

6:03 PM  
Blogger Miles Deli said...

Greetings MB and Wafers,

"For the Cause!" dept.:

Larry Bates, 46, blows away his neighbor because he believed his neighbor's dog crapped in his yard:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4669048/Neighbor-kills-man-dog-argument-dog-feces.html:

Oscar de la Cruz, Jr., 30, takes out his neighbor when he attempted to stop an argument:

http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/local/Man-is-Dead-After-Trying-to-Stop-an-Argument-427807123.html

Miles

6:11 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Jeff-

Regarding the Georgia killing: not clear if the dogshit was warm or cold. This strikes me as being a crucial pt. Meanwhile, check out Larry Bates' face: if this ain't the face of America, I dunno what is.

Together with the Ft. Worth shooting, all of this is evidence of more pummeling mounting up. We really need to start a Wafer newsletter called The Daily Pummel. Lots to report on, and there will be much more as time goes on.

mb

7:36 PM  
Blogger Gigalax said...

BLM is like Occupy Wall Street. It is not a protest movement but a temper tantrum. BLM is simply inchoate rage mixed with an injudicious use of violence.

A legitimate protest movement is well thought-out, has clearly defined long-term goals and uses violence in a judicious manner if necessary. BLM fits none of these criteria.

Getting to the heart of racism in America means confronting the paradoxes which underpin that racism. Black Americans, like all Americans, are too stupid to undertake such an intellectual journey.

11:51 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Gig-

Well, some black scholars have done that analysis, or made that journey. A particularly brilliant example is

https://www.amazon.com/Code-Street-Decency-Violence-Moral/dp/0393320782/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1500443877&sr=1-1&keywords=code+of+the+streets+by+elijah+anderson

And there are others. Turning these analyses into a legitimate protest movement is, of course, a different matter.

mb

2:06 AM  
Blogger jjarden said...

Expat Life...

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/expat-retirees-enjoy-a-life-reminiscent-of-an-earlier-time-2017-07-17

4:20 AM  
Blogger took_the_red_pill said...

Wasn't there something in Why America Failed about empathy being near-zero among American youth? Well, here's more evidence (as if you needed it):

Teens filmed laughing watching a disabled man drown

"Authorities in Florida say a group of teens ages 14 to 16 broke no laws when they were filmed [as] they watched a 32-year-old disabled man drown...'The kids were at the park that day smoking marijuana and apparently saw him walk into the water,' said Yvonne Martinez, Cocoa Police Department spokesperson...

"Even when it became apparent that [he] was [in trouble], none of the boys called 911...When [he] loses his struggle to stay alive in the water, one of the teens is heard in the video saying: 'Oh, he just died.' The entire group is then heard breaking out in laughter...

"Dunn's body was extricated from the pond three days later."

Whether or not a state has a Good Samaritan law, I always thought there was a legal concept known as "depraved indifference". Apparently, that concept doesn't exist in Florida.

11:24 PM  
Blogger Morris Berman said...

Pill-

Well, amigo, you come late to the party. 1st, always send messages to most recent post. No one reads the old stuff.

2nd, WAF isn't really abt empathy, and in addition, the studies about it were not done that early--I was writing the bk in 2009-10.

Finally, we have discussed that topic on this blog over the last few yrs, from time to time, since the empathy research became available.

Hope that helps.

mb

11:40 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home