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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.

Wow. After reading some of the comments on this post, I was surprised to be accused of hating my country. Nothing could be further from the truth. I doubt someone who hates their country would sleep (very little) on concrete in a public park - in the elements, be threatened by angry members of NYPD, temporarily give up income, bathe in sinks, be ridiculed by stuffed suits who gauge life on how fat your wallet is (aka debating employees of Wall Street firms) and stand for hours on Broadway educating tourists on the evils of ALEC and private campaign finance. All with an already bad back.
You have to love your country to sacrifice comfort in order to improve it. Anybody can sit at a computer and rant about their pet peeves. It takes courage to give up money; hot showers and a warm, clean bed to help shake the masses out of an apathetic stupor of ignorance. In conclusion, I'd like to say that the people who took part in the Occupy Wall Street movement did not fail. All those who DIDN'T stand up and make their voice heard failed us all.

Poll

How dumb is the U.S.?

40%91 votes
16%37 votes
20%47 votes
3%7 votes
5%13 votes
2%5 votes
2%5 votes
9%21 votes

| 226 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (24+ / 0-)

    Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

    by ashiftinconsciousness on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:09:36 PM PDT

  •  It Was Founded on Astronomical Surpluses of (12+ / 0-)

    resources and territory, and on remoteness from enemies.

    You could go back and install the stupidest form of government ever devised by kindergartners in place of the framers' Constitution, and we may well have turned out as well or even better than we have with their system, given the immense advantages our peculiar position in space and time awarded us.

    Corporate media are the product of press freedom, the single most catastrophic blunder in the history of democratic system design.

    Freedom from civilizing checks or balances for global information warlords. What could go wrong with that?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:18:53 PM PDT

    •  "We the willing, led by the unknowing, are doing (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Major Kong, Hillbilly Dem, Smoh

      doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much, with so little, for so long, we are now qualified to attempt the impossible with nothing."

      "We are a Plutocracy, we ought to face it. We need, desperately, to find new ways to hear independent voices & points of view" Ramsey Clark, U.S. Attorney General.

      by Mr SeeMore on Mon May 13, 2013 at 10:30:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Dumbest Country? (0+ / 0-)

      "Freedom from civilizing checks or balances" is due to the religion of Capitalism helping to create the Corporatocracy that has infected what once was at least something of a democracy. The "blunder" has been allowing ourselves to be misdirected from what's important in life and busying ourselves with mindless entertainment while human rights are slowly eroded by the predatory class.

      Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

      by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:59:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yup. (8+ / 0-)

    Even among the ones who read and vote, it's a stupid, docile lot that can be bought and sold for a song. That goes for a fair number of Democrats who like to think they are on top of things.

    From here on out, no one can escape the havoc wrought by the unmitigated Class, Climate and Terror Wars.

    by Words In Action on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:20:21 PM PDT

    •  Dumbest Country? (0+ / 0-)

      Exactly. No intelligent person could just sit by and see what goes on in the U.S. and mindlessly obey every whim of the corporate predators - at their own expense.

      Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

      by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:53:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    poco, gffish

    Maybe long-term exposure (from birth on) to levels of CO2 higher than 300 ppm makes people stupid.

  •  As a gaggle of assertions go, this is par. n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pico, Murphoney, Smoh
  •  Except for those in Continent of Europe? (0+ / 0-)

    In country after country, voters ask for less Europe, not more.

    Yet, the pols continue to enact policies which give Brussels a larger say.

    What's the end game?

    Barroso's brazen enough to admit it:

    Federal Europe will be 'a reality in a few years', says Jose Manuel Barroso

    A fully fledged federal Europe may seem like "political science fiction" today but will soon become reality for all European Union countries whether inside or outside the euro, Jose Manuel Barroso has said.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/...

     The president of the European Commission has fanned the flames of British debate over EU membership by insisting that fiscal union in the eurozone will lead to "intensified political union" for all 27 member states.

    "This is about the economic and monetary union but for the EU as a whole," he said.

    .....

    "Further economic integration would transcend the limits of the intergovernmental method of running the EU and the eurozone in particular," Mr Barroso said.

    Docile Americans?  Uneducated Americans?

    For all our faults, we would not allow the transfer of sovereign power that country after country is allowing in the continent of Europe.

    The people of Europe ask for less Europe.  Their pols give them more Europe.

    And the voters are too afraid to do anything about it.

    Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

    by PatriciaVa on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:34:19 PM PDT

    •  Oh c'mon. They want less PIIGS (0+ / 0-)

      and more Germany, France, and Scandinavia.

      Meanwhile the diarist's question is best answered in the example of George W. Bush: When we do dumb things, like electing him (twice!?)  the world suffers the greatest dumbness possible due to our oversized global influence.

    •  Take away 95% of armaments of the USA (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      reflectionsv37, sweettp2063

      and you won't be left with much.

      The USA is "#1" (what a joke that is) because we
       (we = Corporate USA) take what we want or start a war to get what we want.

      It's always in somebody's best interest to promote enemies, real or imagined.

      "We are a Plutocracy, we ought to face it. We need, desperately, to find new ways to hear independent voices & points of view" Ramsey Clark, U.S. Attorney General.

      by Mr SeeMore on Mon May 13, 2013 at 10:22:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  English workers don't want less Europe, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NYFM, Mortifyd, Smoh

      they want to keep EU worker-rights standards  that the Conservatives want to abolish. That's what I read, anyway.

      "The war on drugs followed by the war on terror has eliminated protections we have had since the Magna Carta." -Horace Boothroyd III

      by mookins on Mon May 13, 2013 at 10:23:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I must disagree with this... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      unfangus
      For all our faults, we would not allow the transfer of sovereign power that country after country is allowing in the continent of Europe.
      Fact is, we have and we do. Citizens United? The continued running of our democracy by corporations? The suppression of votes and activists with whom the paymasters disagree?

      Our ”sovereign  rights” were transferred long ago. At least in Europe, they might be able to vote for them

      This sig is self-aware. It is not only aware that it is a sig, it is aware that it is aware that it is a sig. It is beyond meta. It is Om.

      by Freelance Escapologist on Tue May 14, 2013 at 04:36:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kim Kardashian. That's all I have to say on the... (8+ / 0-)

    matter.

    'If you want to be a hero, well just follow me.' - J. Lennon

    by Clive all hat no horse Rodeo on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:54:05 PM PDT

  •  Dumbest industrialized democracy. n/t (3+ / 0-)

    "Michael Moore, who was filming a movie about corporate welfare called 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' sought and received incentives."

    by Bush Bites on Mon May 13, 2013 at 09:56:56 PM PDT

  •  Stupid is as stupid does. Guess it does make (0+ / 0-)

    'ya wonder?   Personally, I'm siding with history and working for our very best.

    Living the austerity dream.

    by jwinIL14 on Mon May 13, 2013 at 10:48:23 PM PDT

  •  No. (0+ / 0-)

    Somalia. They are very stupid there.

    If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

    by Bensdad on Mon May 13, 2013 at 10:57:27 PM PDT

  •  No! We're not dumb! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exlrrp

    We're just selectively smart.  

    "The erudite are not wise and the wise are not erudite." - Lao Tzu

    by TheKost on Mon May 13, 2013 at 11:40:50 PM PDT

  •  After reading Shock Doctrine and Howard Zinn's (4+ / 0-)

    The People's History of the US, we certainly are one of the cruelest! The way the European White men killed and tortured the native Indians, the slaves, women, the Mexicans all for the 'greatest country on earth' for freedom and liberty etc., etc., to spread corporate interests, I mean to spread 'democracy'....We sure have been fed a bunch of historical lies and now in Present Day the GOP and Corporatists are STILL doing the same thing-all over the world.

    The US is doing the same thing over and over again- so my conclusion the U.S. is an insane country.  It's always been the Bad Rich vs the rest of us...

    "Time is for careful people, not passionate ones." "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

    by roseeriter on Tue May 14, 2013 at 01:11:03 AM PDT

    •  Dumbest Country? (0+ / 0-)

      That's two brilliant writers. You might like an essay I posted on my blog: ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com titled  "Cooperation or Competition? (Aka Evolve Or Die)". It's not at the level of those talented writers, but I think you'd like it. Thanks for your comment.

      Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

      by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:41:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  well we are surely the dumbest nation that (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shifty18, misslegalbeagle

    1: landed on the moon
    2: freed Europe from the Nazis
    3: saved people from Tsunamis and other mass destruction

    •  talk about some laurels... (2+ / 0-)

      1. 43 years ago.  Now we have to battle in court to teach science.

      2. That's not exactly how the rest of the world looks at it... watching a bit of Hitlery channel lately?  Hitler was overextended on several fronts and we didn't even enter the war until it got personal at Pearl Harbor.  We would have happily let Germany walk over the rest of europe otherwise.

      3.When did we do this?  We've been hit with hurricanes and tornadoes of pretty disasterous proportions - and we have no technology to stop them - so how do you figure this?  Sending aid is not the same things as saving people from natural disaster or "mass destruction."  If we really wanted to save people - we would stop starting wars.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Tue May 14, 2013 at 03:44:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I actually feel sorry for you (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Shifty18

        1) 43 years ago, so what?  who has done it since?

        2) How the rest of the world looks at it?  Are you for real?  I know when the war started and when we entered.  I know about the Russians and all that jazz.  Nobody was happy the Russians "freed" them, and no one in who was there thinks Europe could have been saved without America.  

        3) What are you talking about?  We have sent men, material, and Billions to help those who have suffered man made and natural disasters.  You think we have not saved anyone?  Then you need to read more, and read BETTER.

        https://www.youtube.com/...

        •  Really... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Kingsmeg

          1. A lot of people actually - you'll notice the ISS captain who just landed was Canadian, not American.  We aren't the only ones in space and never have been - and we have consistently shit on our space program ever since we "beat" the CCCP to the moon.  It's amazing NASA does as much as they do with the pennies we give them. Imagine what we could do if we gave them nickels and stopped basing our program on "beating" enemies that don't exist anymore... and given that we DO have to fight in court to teach basic science to our children - we aren't doing well in that department at ALL.

          2. I'm sorry, have you ever lived outside the US?  I did, courtesy of the US Army.  Our version of WWII is not the same as the rest of the world - and we give ourselves a LOT more credit than they do.  This is not to say our efforts were unneeded or unnecessary - but they are not the end all be all of WWII as people who watch a little too much Hitlery Channel and only went to American schools might think.

          3. Sending such after the fact is not what the words you typed actually MEAN.  We did not SAVE people FROM tsunamis, we helped them recover afterward. Without someone else looking and congratulating us - we don't do shit.  

          Whole parts of new Orleans are still not rebuilt because there is no international acclaim to helping our own poor and displaced. Our national infrastructure is falling apart because we are in wars on multiple fronts we can't win and were lied into - so we don't have that money to spend for our national NEEDS.

          We STILL cause more destruction through our poorly thought out and structured wars than we fix through international emergency aid - while treating the veterans of our failed wars (and our civilian population by wasting money on loser fake reason wars) like dogs.

          Clearly, YOU need to read more and take off the MURICA F YEAH glasses.

          And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

          by Mortifyd on Tue May 14, 2013 at 06:05:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have lived outside the US, and not on an Army (0+ / 0-)

            Post.   I have lived with the locals.  But when someone hates their own country, there is no point arguing with them, so I bid you adieu.  

            •  I never said I lived on base (0+ / 0-)

              I said I went there courtesy of the army.  I was a student in international schools, not just American ones - I was in the Navy, my DAD was Army.

              And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

              by Mortifyd on Tue May 14, 2013 at 11:08:21 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Well Said Mort! (1+ / 1-)
            Recommended by:
            Mortifyd
            Hidden by:
            TurkeyCreek

            1) who won the space race.....the ones who landed on the moon, or the same ones who now have to rent seat space off the nasty commie swine who still have a functioning manned space mission?

            2) Screw you TurkeyCreek....you have the same level of IQ and historical perspective of WW2 as a clucking bird. America did not win WW2 - a coalition of ALLIES did. While the US sat on its arse the Brits fought the Battle Of Britain, all but destroyed the Luftwaffe, and turned Hitler back at the Channel (causing the cancellation of Op Sealion). Spout your stupid opinion in any Brit pub and you would get the following thrown back at you (probably accompanied by a pint in the face) - You don't get to say you have saved the world and claim the victory parade when you turn up 3 years late for the kick off....twice.

            3) Really TC - well bugger me....I never knew you Yanks could stop a Tsunami, Earthquake or Volcano going off. And if you are so fecking great at sorting out natural disasters, how come you seem to be so crap at dealing with ones that hit the USA?

            Birchbagger Murikah Numbah Wun!!!

            •  you are out of line (0+ / 0-)

              you deserve the troll rating.  I would give the TR if you treated any fellow Kossack that way.

              btw, why do you guys think hating on America is some kind of progressive merit badge.  And for the record, neither of you have a clue about WW2, and from what I can tell, much else.

              •  recognising national failure is NOT (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ashiftinconsciousness

                "hating on America." It's recognising national failures.  Both of us have a very good clue about WWII - and WWI as well - and America was late for the ball and then claimed we did everything.  Funny, no one else remembers it like that.

                But you go on and get back to your FOX nation and Hitlery channel - what else do you have going for you, really...

                And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

                by Mortifyd on Tue May 14, 2013 at 11:12:48 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  uprated to counter the bitter troll HR /nt (0+ / 0-)

              Of course Russia isn't communist any more - it's ruthlessly capitalistic and run by the 1% and the former KGB.  Ayn Rand would be right at home there now.

              And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

              by Mortifyd on Tue May 14, 2013 at 11:15:51 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  We can pretty much rightly claim to have (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TurkeyCreek, Mortifyd

        freed France. The rest of Europe not so much. BUT... and this is a HUGE BUT.

        Why does it seem like everyone forgets that the Pacific Theater was a thing?

        •  not racism (0+ / 0-)

          but certainly Eurocentrism.  I admit, I fall into it too.

        •  Dumbest Country? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mortifyd

          Helping to free France in WWII can be looked at as payback for their help during the Revolutionary War. Without their help, we'd still be a colony of Great Britain. (By the way, what is your actual point?)

          Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

          by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:28:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  My point is that (0+ / 0-)

            there was the implication that the US really didn't do all that much in WWII because Stalin was doing the lion's share in terms of wearing down Hitler. The Allies' achievements in Asia were almost entirely due to the U.S. Slightly OT, but a necessary rant all the same because people seem to think these days that the 'world war' stretched from Paris to Poland

  •  You are somewhat wrong on your history (3+ / 0-)

    because you need to remember several things about  the Bill of Rights

    1.  It was not part of the original Constitution, in part because Madison was worried that if we guaranteed some rights, some idiots would argue that whatever was not specifically listed was not guaranteed.  He was persuaded by others, including the strong opposition of George Mason to ratification absent a Bill of Rights, to commit to one - a commitment that was necessary to get Virginia to ratify the Constitution.  Madison's original reluctance is one reason you have the 9th Amendment.  One reason for Madison's reluctance was his own experience in Virginia, whose Declaration of Rights had been written by Mason before the Declaration of Independence, and a state light Pennsylvania whose 1776 Constitution began with a Bill of Rights.  

    2.  The Bill of Rights placed guarantees only against action by the Federal government, which is made clear by the first word of Amendment I -  Congress.  

    3.  At the time of the ratification of the Bill of Rights in 1791, about 1/2 the states had state-supported religions, including most of the New England states.  

    4. While it is true that the notion of free exercise was pretty wide-spread and accepted, as seen in the guarantee in the Northwest Ordinance for the territory that would eventually become the states of OH, IN, MI, IL and WI, it was not absolute.  Thus Maryland' famous Act of Toleration originally had prescribed death for anyone who denied the Holy Trinity and the state continued to bar non-Christians from public office until the passage of the Jew Bill in the mid 1820s.  Pennsylvania's Constitution was hostile to atheists.  

    One could argue that since the oath of office in Article VI of the US Constitution applied to state officials, the no religious test for any office under the Constitution that appears in the same article should also have applied, but it was not seen that way.

    Our current notions about the First Amendment provision on religion came to be accepted over time, with Massachusetts being the final state to disestablish its religion in 1833, even before the idea of the doctrine of selective incorporation came to be used by the Supreme Court in applying the protections of the Bill of Rights against the states through the 14th Amendment.  It is worth noting that one sitting Justice, Clarence Thomas, has argued (wrongly in the eyes of most legal analysts) that the no establishment clause has not been properly incorporated against the states so that an action such as that recently attempted in North Carolina is not constitutionally barred.

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Tue May 14, 2013 at 03:27:56 AM PDT

    •  Dumbest Country? (0+ / 0-)

      The point of the essay wasn't so much Constitutional theory or history as much as making a point about societal priorities today. It seems a large number of people in the U.S. value the right to bear arms as more important than exercising free speech and individual desires as more important than the well being of society as a whole. To rant about the right to own automatic weapons while we lose the right to freely express ourselves and to vote seems insane. Thanks for your comment.

      Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

      by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:25:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nah, we're right in the middle. n/t (0+ / 0-)

    You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

    by Rich in PA on Tue May 14, 2013 at 03:43:41 AM PDT

  •  Diaries like this make me wonder (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shifty18

    Happy just to be alive

    by exlrrp on Tue May 14, 2013 at 04:12:53 AM PDT

  •  Considering I did not have to kill my breakfast (0+ / 0-)

    this morning or kidnap someone to pay the rent, I'd say no.

  •  Dumb? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fauxrs

    I would use gullible,hubristic and incurious as better descriptives of our collective personality. We also appear to be ignorant by preference, so we are intellectually lazy as well. All these traits taken together will lead to our downfall, both metaphorically and in reality. We suffer from Terminal Complacency exacerbated by advanced Schadenfreude.

    Our nation is filled with people who were fed a myth at an early age about how we were and are the freest, the bravest, the boldest, the smartest nation that ever has existed. Mixed into the myth is a large dose of Horatio Algerism - that every single person in America has an equal opportunity to be a self-made success who is limited only by their own vision or lack thereof. Additionally, we were founded by a band of seemingly extraterrestrial geniuses who foresaw every possible challenge of future generations.

    As a result of this myth being so successfully imprinted upon us, we literally DO NOT CARE if a government and people somewhere else does something differently and better than we do - the fact that it's origin is outside of our borders makes it inherently inferior.

    Healthcare is an obvious example. It can be empirically proven that many other countries have better outcomes expending fewer dollars and cover all of their citizens. Again, WE DON'T CARE. Those Democratic Socialistic European Cheese Eating Furren Language Speaking Countries can take their Single Payer systems and shove it! No one has the ability to interfere with our God-given right to kill and bankrupt ourselves.

    Since we have no will adjust and evolve even if it will make us richer and healthier, what possible success can there be for other areas of social policy?

    I'll touch briefly on the Schadenfreude aspect. Horrible things are fine to Americans as long as they happen to other people.

    We can watch people suffer from natural disasters and not get aid (Sandy) We can watch sick people being denied cancer treatment,hungry people being denied food stamps and little kids being tossed out of preschool.(Sequester)

    We can watch people lose their homes through fraud and swindle with no attempt at justice for the homeowners.(Foreclosure crisis)

    In all of this, the underlying ethos is: Anything is ok, as long as it doesn't happen to me.

    Far from guiding us away from these worst traits in our national character, our leaders lately seem to have embraced and embodied them.

    If we don't get some prominent people changing the course of our national dialogue and EDUCATING AND INSPIRING people about what they could and should expect from a responsible and compassionate government founded on a Rule Of Law, then we are well and truly f*#Ked.

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Tue May 14, 2013 at 05:59:48 AM PDT

    •  Dumbest Country? (0+ / 0-)

      Well written. It's a difficult problem to overcome. We need to educate the masses, but with a virtual corporate lockdown on media, it's nearly impossible. We need to end private campaign finance to get back our election system to diversify our media to educate the people to get them to see why we need to end private campaign finance to...
      It's a vicious cycle that needs a lot of energy and a completely different way of thinking to repair. Thanks for the comment.

      Doing my part to break the Capitalist Indoctrination Process. Here's where I rant: www.ashiftinconsciousness.wordpress.com

      by ashiftinconsciousness on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:11:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The United States was not founded (0+ / 0-)

    on the theory that states should not be able to establish official religions.  It wasn't until after the Civil War (and the passage of the 14th Amendment) that it became clear that states couldn't do this.  

    Those in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.  

  •  Possibly (0+ / 0-)

    Then again mate, I can assure you we have some pretty gold standard pig ignorant dumbasses this side of the Atlantic as well.

    Thing is... we don't elect them to Parliament.

    This side of The Pond, stupid and religious looses an election.

    Your side its Bachmann, Gohmert, Cruz, Graham, Paul 1 and 2, and on and on and on.

    Go figure.

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