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Despite knowing how pathetic many people in our government can be, I was still surprised to see two particular Senators plea for aid for the victims of the tornadoes that ripped through Oklahoma recently. What? How could that be? Of course we need to help victims of severe disasters. Well, there's a catch. Those same two Senators voted against federal funds for victims of Hurricane Sandy, the same hurricane that was responsible for severe damage throughout the Northeast U.S. - as well as six other nations - and numerous deaths. The same one that was the largest hurricane on record to come off the Atlantic Ocean - approximately 1,100 miles wide. Obviously, their concern for cutting the federal budget applies only to people outside of their home state. As it turns out, Jim Inhofe and Tom Coburn didn't mind taking credit for Oklahoma receiving federal disaster aid in 2007 for severe ice storms and in 2008 for "severe weather". And, in 1999, Oklahoma received $67.8 million in federal relief funds due to severe tornadic activity. (Climate change? What climate change?)

Naturally, I believe that money was deserved. I'm simply questioning the humanity of people who try to prevent the federal government from helping to alleviate some of the intense suffering caused by a horrible natural occurence. (I wonder what they thought of the Occupy Sandy relief effort. Were they still condemning OWS as possible terrorists?)

The following is an essay I wrote about the moral integrity of that bastion of civilization known as "the greatest nation on Earth".

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Language. We all use it every day, but how many of us realize when we are being used by it? Does that sound like a silly idea to you? The financial terrorists (they prefer “elite”) who currently rule society know how to use language to help them redirect other peoples’ money into their possession, keep that money and divert the attention of most of the population away from how they do it. Does it still sound like a silly idea?

Did you ever notice, for example, that negotiations between business owners and those they employ are referred to as “labor” disputes (as opposed to “management” disputes) and that management will “make concessions” while workers “make demands”?

Hmmm, interesting. How often do you hear that social programs that feed and clothe poor people are called “reckless” and “careless”, but billions of dollars wasted on unnecessary and unused weapons are “necessary for security”? Why is an economic policy that costs so much in terms of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness called “free” trade? And, why is it that people unable to find work need to “pull themselves up by the bootstraps” and avoid the embarrassment of receiving welfare, but when corrupt and/or incompetent millionaires and billionaires receive billions of dollars in taxpayer money it’s called a “bailout” or a "subsidy" and considered necessary?

We need to avoid the trap of being caught in a battle that cannot be won. The class warfare waged by these virtual cannibals against the rights of people everywhere starts with a war of words. It’s insane to remain in a battle using a playbook written by those who are fighting against your best interests. So, why do we allow a small group of people who care nothing about anyone other than themselves set the framework of discussion on all political and social issues? Why do we allow them to tell us what we want, when we want it and how hard we should work to pay them for it?

Why are poor immigrants called “aliens” while wealthy immigrants are called “entrepreneurs”?

Why do we have “high hopes” – but “low expectations”? Are we being set up to accept defeat and, thus, acquiesce to control by the “rulers” of society – the “successful” people?

Speaking of “successful”, why is someone who was born wealthy and never worked one day considered a “success” while the worker who provides a necessity in the community and earns a modest income considered a “loser” by many people?

It sounds insane, doesn’t it? So, what gives? Well, to begin with, most people have decided (or not decided?) to stop thinking for themselves. They allow others to choose what is important to them. It sounds like the behavior of an obedient, abused young child. How do these predators do it? Are they that much smarter than the rest of us? Or is it that they have no moral guidance to let them know when they’ve gone too far in taking advantage of others and use cunningly charasmatic people to get their message across? As for the seemingly comatose masses, just how does an adult with a functioning brain get to the point of not wanting to think anymore? Interesting question. There are several possibilities to explain these phenomena…

One is that there is a “financial elite” controlling virtually all of the media in the U.S. (as well as other nations) and that they use this formidable power to convince a large percentage of the population of the desirability of using their time merely to attain possessions and engage in mind-numbing entertainment. These insidious schemers have learned that an effective way to make obscene amounts of money – and keep it – is to control as much of the behavior of a captured population as possible through clever manipulation of emotions. Sickeningly large amounts of money are appropriated by reliably predicting what useless possessions people will obsess over if the proper buttons are pushed. Manipulation of language in advertisement is a powerful tool in that endeavor. Studies are done to evaluate what particular words are most effective at eliciting a desired response in people. These words – or usually phrases – are shrewdly placed in ads to tell people what they “need” and “want”. Interestingly, because of the subliminal nature of these messages many people who arrogantly think they are immune to this tactic are the most susceptible. This is because they aren’t aware that their subconscious accepts the message and creates a “manufactured need” that they will believe they initiated themselves. The seemingly endless repetition of these ads results in outrageous amounts of money flowing into the bank accounts of corporate executives in the advertising and media industries.

Now, if people were more comfortable with their environment, they probably wouldn’t be as receptive to such evil deceptions. However, the cleverness of these callous conspirators is multi-layered. The cold-blooded way in which they have cultivated a lottery mentality among the population not only enables them to predict behavior, it allows them to spread feelings of desperation in people causing them to think they must take advantage of others to avoid being taken advantage of themselves.

“It’s a dog eat dog world out there.”

“Take care of #1.”

“Nice guys finish last.”

This sets in motion a merciless machine-like system that has people fighting each other for a small “piece of the pie” while ensuring the wealthy keep the largest share for themselves. Working class people who struggle for a barely tolerable existence see the wealthy and are told that they can attain great wealth if they follow the rules set up by these “entrepreneurs”, these saviors of the deserving from the despair of mediocrity. These scam artists paint a beguiling picture of themselves successfully “making it to the top” and living a spectacular life. In actuality, they are nothing more than high dollar swindlers playing and preying. They play on people’s manufactured dreams and prey on their gullibility.

It’s been said that “words can be molded until they clothe ideas in disguise.” A concept of evil intent said by an evil man – Josef Goebbels, the infamous Nazi Minister of Propaganda. But, it could easily have been said by Rupert Murdoch, the Australian-born Global Minister of Propaganda who owns media throughout the world – including an incredibly large amount of satellites orbiting the planet.

Murdoch has built an empire that manipulates public opinion in nations throughout the world. He and his fellow corruptors mold viewpoints and create the illusion that a majority of a given population support a particular idea or legislation that will ultimately separate people from their hard-earned money. They usually succeed and, in doing so, increase the obscene profits of corporate charlatans who can’t seem to get enough wealth to satisfy their diabolical desires.

In an interesting twist of logic that works on a subconscious level, we are told in romantic stories (a make believe world) that to think of others before ourselves is valiant and heroic. Meanwhile, we are shown in every day life (the "real" world) that to think of others before ourselves is foolish and unproductive. This sends us the dictinct message that idealistic, utopian thoughts are childish and unrealistic. Obviously, those involved in making a fortune off misfortune have much to gain by using malicious manipulation of language to control behavior.

The war of words very likely has a long history, but it was brought to a very disturbing level during the 20th century. From the inception of behavior modification by Edward Bernays to the exploitation of perceived needs and hungers by executives on Madison Avenue and in Hollywood, people have been led by their monkey minds to act in whichever ways are desired by the devious salesmen running these obscene casinos of mindless possession. If you don’t believe you are wearing the chains of virtual slavery, you are serving a death sentence. If you have the sense to see the chains around your arms and legs, then they are not around your heart or mind. If we are to evolve beyond blindly obeying the relentless attacks of these brutally savage masters of deception, we must avoid falling for the automatic responses they are successfully managing to evoke in us. No matter how alluring. No matter how tempting.

We can pretend we are satisfied with a system of holding individual freedom over the collective well-being of society, but how long can we pretend we are satisfied with a system that is fueled by dissatisfaction? Since the engine of Capitalism is greed and striving to achieve, then we cannot succeed without taking advantage of others. And, we cannot possibly achieve. Otherwise, the system breaks down.

And, more important, do we honestly want to be remembered for the time civilization gave up on what being human is all about? Do we want to be reviled by future generations as the people who decided that life wasn’t worth living – that merely existing in technological dependence and ignorant apathy was enough?

People say money talks. They also say talk is cheap and you get what you pay for. I guess we’re getting what we pay for.

I’d like to leave you with something to dwell on. It's not about language, but adresses the issue of what direction we're heading as a society. They are sacred words from the heart – instead of heartless words from manipulative minds:

“Treat the Earth well. It was not given to you by your parents. It was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”  – An ancient Native American proverb


How successful has the Capitalist Indoctrination Process been in creating an obedient, submissive population?

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Watching what is presented as "news" these days, caused me to think about an essay I wrote recently about an event a few years back that should have been a call for revolution in the streets. It pains me to see so many people blind to the fact that there is an obvious conservative bias in the corporate media.  

To believe there is a liberal bias in the media is one of the most pathetic things I've ever heard ascribed to human beings. Where was the outrage in the media when peaceful protesters were beaten by rabid members of NYPD during the Occupy Wall Street movement? Where were the pleas of tyrannical persecution when internal documents revealed the length members of the FBI and Homeland Security were going to in order to spy on OWS members? I saw outrage for the IRS when it was revealed that they closely scrutinized conservative groups requests for tax-exempt status leading up to the 2012 election. A "head" had to roll, despite the fact that it was revealed that not only was it also done to liberal groups, the only organization to be denied tax-exempt status was a liberal group!

This story is about the pre-eminent conservative propaganda organization in the land effectively legalizing lies and deception in the "news". The fact that what they broadcast doesn't have to be factual would inherently mean it isn't news, but in the land of milk and money...

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Maybe. Maybe not. It’s tough to know. It’s especially difficult to figure out considering there are a couple of countries that are too closed off from the rest of the world to know what they’re talking about. And, the fact that the corporate media in the U.S. is so selective in what they ALLOW us to hear about is another impediment.

If there was a tournament for dumb, I’m pretty sure we’d make it to the Final Four. (Come to think of it, March Madness would be a good name – but it would cause too much confusion.)

The United States was founded on a few basic concepts. One of them is freedom of religion – including freedom FROM religion, but a recent poll found that approximately one-third of U.S. citizens questioned said they support a state religion in the U.S. It sounds like a bad joke – but apparently it’s an authentic poll result. And, extremely embarrassing. Here’s how the First Amendment starts: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” Oh well, so much for a state religion.

Another basic concept behind the forming of the United States is the freedom of expression  (unless you’re Muslim, Native American, Black, Brown, gay, poor, middle class, homeless, a strong woman, disabled, elderly, a progressive activist, a Socialist… the list goes on.) Here’s a continuation of the First amendment: “… or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…” Damn, I guess we’re really not supposed to stop people from expressing how they feel, either.

Another right guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution which is associated with freedom of speech is the right to publically protest policies you feel are unfair and need to be addressed by the government. The Occupy Wall Street movement was a blessing to everything that the U.S. used to stand for. People arrived from around the country to peacefully assemble and make the voice of the less privileged heard. The enthusiasm quickly spread as “occupations” popped up around the world. However, no one would have know about their true intentions by the way the corporate media blasted it as a bunch of lazy, unemployed bums who wanted a free lunch, to steal from the wealthy and to be able to walk around dirty while begging for money. Never mind the fact that it was generated by a genuine concern about economic injustice, racism, sexism and corporate control of our government – among other issues. More of the First Amendment: “…or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Oh, that damn Constitution again getting in the way of those sociopathic predators who wish to push their petty, distorted version of what’s “proper” on the remainder of the country.

During the reign of George II – Bush, that is – the government took advantage of the grief and anger over the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks to pass quasi-martial law legislation called the Patriot Act. (A more ridiculous name could not have been used as Jefferson, Madison and Franklin are still rolling in their graves.) Part of the Patriot Act includes “sneak and peek warrants” which allow law enforcement to enter private premises without consent or even the knowledge of the homeowner. Now, you’d think that it would be used (still wrongfully) against people under suspicion for terroristic activities with substantial evidence of violent intentions. No, that’s not the case. Even misdemeanor offenses can be the subject of sneak and peek warrants – also known as “enhanced surveillance procedures”. Now, from the Fourth Amendment: “Protection from unreasonable search and seizure. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers or effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue…”.

Now, these are important concepts contained in what some consider the most crucial document in the forming of the United States. And, apparently, the majority of the people who are supposed to be “protected” by these basic civil rights don’t seem to care much about them. But, there is one part of the Bill of Rights that millions of people are obsessed with: the good ‘ol Second Amendment. Every time Congress introduces gun control legislation, a segment of the U.S. population goes berserk accusing the government of trying to “gut the Second Amendment” by hiring their decadent, liberal secularists with their “God-hating, anti-gun agenda” to “attack the personal freedoms of law-abiding Americans”. People rise from their well-worn couches, grab the remote control to pause their indoctrination machine, hop in their gas-guzzling vehicles and gather at rallies to proclaim the right to own a gun as the quintessential aspect of what being a U.S. citizen is about. There’s even a gun appreciation day. Seriously. It seems that ”they” can take away our Miranda rights, lock us away in prison indefinitely without bringing criminal charges, use “enhanced interrogation techniques”, censor our media and beat us with batons for assembling in public to bring attention to injustice  - but don’t force us to fill out a form and wait to buy a gun.

Corporate media brings us images of smooth talkers warning us of the dangers of gun control: background checks will lead to a national gun registration which will lead to guns being forcibly taken from us which will lead to us being crushed by a tyrannical, oppressive government bent on controlling every aspect of our lives. What do these people think they’d do against the U.S. military if there was an armed rebellion led by the NRA and militias? Do they think they’d hold their own against the most formidable army ever assembled? Not only is a military incursion against the U.S. people an unlikely scenario, there is another serious breakdown in logic here. Having a stockpile of weapons isn’t the answer to tyrannical rule. Especially when you allow the national debate to be about automatic weapons, flag burning, a state religion and preventing a large section of the population to get married while drumming up ignorance, fear and hatred.

These are all ways that our attention is misdirected by corporate manipulators and their ignorant, self-centered lap dogs on the payroll to prevent us from repairing a seriously broken system. They dumb us down and get us to talk about nonsensical non-issues rather than addressing racism, sexism and the disparity in wealth between the rulers and the masses while they erode important civil rights such as freedom of speech and the right to vote.

Ben Franklin once said “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Hopefully, one day we’ll learn that enforcement of civil rights will protect us from tyranny – not guns.


How dumb is the U.S.?

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Thu May 09, 2013 at 01:41 PM PDT

The Curse of Infotainment

by ashiftinconsciousness

After the recent happenings in Boston and Texas, my mind started wandering through the cold-hearted landscape of mainstream media. This is where it landed:

A section of a U.S. city on lockdown during a huge manhunt for criminals suspected of a bombing. SWAT teams searching everywhere and reporters tripping over themselves to get entertainment – uh, I mean information - out to their customers. ANY information – whether true or not. It’s a disconcerting thought in a society that purports to be a democracy. I couldn’t help wondering why that much attention and that many resources aren’t expended on educating the public on the destruction of the U.S. Constitution – something that affects everyone in the U.S. in a big way. Or why stories on the sad state of the less fortunate in society aren’t on the front pages of newspapers and featured on television news programs. I wondered if the corporate media would give so much airtime if Muslims or young Black and Latino men were being murdered. Or, if homeless people were being cut down in the streets.

It’s very sad that we seem to vary the values we place on human life depending on where they fit into society – as if life were a commodity. Oh yeah, that’s right. We live in that heartless system called Capitalism. Everything has value, with a number attached to it. How could I forget? We sell good health to those wealthy enough to afford it. We sell indoctrination and call it media, entertainment and education. People pay for an education and get tamed. Corporate media’s purpose is to soothe the beast of creativity. Obey and you might “succeed”. Observe protocol and climb the corporate ladder.

Since we allow pharmaceutical corporations to get away with mass murder by marketing unsafe drugs and fast “food” establishments to reap billions selling toxin-laden snacks to a mostly unsuspecting populace (especially in poor neighborhoods), do we really care about one another? Or do we like a good story? Would we find the resources to track down criminals preying on “undesirables”? Or are the ratings too low for prime time?

Now, I’m not talking about any specific subject in the media - racism, religious intolerance or poverty – as important as they are. I’m talking about the way that corporate media jumps on the bandwagon of controlling information in a way that keeps attention riveted on certain issues. There are two aspects to this strategy. And, it IS a strategy. Don’t fool yourself that it’s some natural process. One part of the strategy is that it diverts attention from the fact that OUR government has been purchased – at a discount price – by corporations and, specifically, away from the horrible deregulation corporations purchase from corrupt politicians to bypass important legislation designed to protect people. From environmental disasters to manipulation of elections to disposing of safety and fairness regulations, corporate criminals are feasting on the carcass of our former democracy while the working class pay the price.

For example, the corporate media went at the Boston bombing that killed 3 innocent people like rabid mongrels who’d been starved for days. Why was there relatively so little attention paid to the explosion in West, Texas in which at least 15 innocent people were killed (the majority first responders) and over 200 injured? It left a crater 93 feet in diameter and 10 feet deep. Isn’t that entertaining enough, America? Of course, I’m not dismissing the horrible tragedy in Boston. Any time people are senselessly murdered and maimed we need to express the love and compassion necessary to move forward with healing. It’s an extremely painful process that takes time, patience and understanding. I just can’t help being concerned with why we don’t care as much about a PREVENTABLE disaster like an industrial accident as we do about the “disasters” that wealthy people want us to pay attention to. And that brings me to the second aspect of the manipulation of information by corporate media. They spend much more time on the disasters that corporations can profit on instead of the disasters these predators need to show responsibility for. It’s about the money, the driving force behind most of what goes on in this selfish, possession-obsessed world we live in.

Why do we allow this to happen? Why don’t we like to question our masters over their deranged fascination with deregulation? Some people think; ‘Well, what’s wrong with corporations taking care of corporations? They’re people, too, right?’ Is it because we’re too busy worrying about people from other societies “attacking our way of life”? The way of life in which people are thrown away if they are too disabled, too poor or too old? The one in which almost the entirety of society is expected to work most of their lives to provide comfort and luxuries for a few people who rule over them? And then, after decades of paying their due, have to worry that their small, ineffectual safety net is going to be stolen by purchased politicians doing the bidding for those same people? The way of life in which more than 16 MILLION children live in poverty and where about 10,000 people die each year due to gun violence? We’ve all got to do our part to protect this system where human life is a commodity exchanged on the big board Monday through Friday from 9 to 5.

How long will people continue to believe we live in a civilized society? How long will we stay blind to the savagery of a system in which guns are better protected than some people? And, where many disabled are left to fend for themselves. In which some children are forced to go to school without proper nutrition and be relegated to the darker corners of society for not being able to compete with those given what EVERY CHILD NEEDS AND DESERVES. I’m not sure what’s worse – that these things exist or that so many people aren’t aware of it.

Mohandas Gandhi was once asked about “Western civilization”. His reply was “I think it would be an excellent idea.” Unfortunately, things haven’t changed much after all these years in the land of the “me” and the home of the enslaved.


How corrupt is corporate media?

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