Softpanorama

May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
(slightly skeptical) Educational society promoting "Back to basics" movement against IT overcomplexity and  bastardization of classic Unix

1984

News

Classic Books

Recommended Links

Animal Farm

Brave New World

The True Believer

Pope Francis on danger of neoliberalism

The Good Soldier Svejk Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass Inverted Totalitarism == Managed Democracy == Neoliberalism  Resurgence of neofascism as reaction on crisis of neoliberalism and neoliberal globalization Big Uncle is Watching You The Irony of American History The Power Elite

The Deep State

Winner-Take-All Politics

Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners"

The Rise of the New Global Elite

Parkinson Law

The Peter Principle

Humor


Introduction

 

Adapted from Wikipedia articles Nineteen Eighty-Four and George Orwell 

Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950),[1] who used the pen name George Orwell, was an English novelist, essayist, journalist and critic. George Orwell know something about propaganda. He participated in Spanish Civil War and during the Second World war worked at BBC.  That's why 1984 despite viewed typically as a depiction of the USSR and similar communist regimes is actually much deeper and is a novel that researched ultimate limits of propaganda (aka brainwashing). Orwell's work continues to influence popular and political culture, and The adjective Orwellian connotes an attitude and a policy of control by propaganda, surveillance, misinformation, denial of truth, and manipulation of the past.

Many of  his neologisms, such as cold war, Big Brother, Thought Police, Room 101, memory hole, doublethink, and thoughtcrime became common English words. Newspeak is a simplified and obfuscatory language designed to make independent thought impossible. Doublethink means holding two contradictory beliefs simultaneously. The Thought Police are those who suppress all dissenting opinion. Prolefeed is homogenised, manufactured superficial literature, film and music, used to control and indoctrinate the populace through docility. Big Brother is a supreme dictator who watches everyone. Orwell may have been the first to use the term cold war, in his essay, "You and the Atom Bomb", published in Tribune, 19 October 1945. He wrote:

We may be heading not for general breakdown but for an epoch as horribly stable as the slave empires of antiquity. James Burnham's theory has been much discussed, but few people have yet considered its ideological implications;— this is, the kind of world-view, the kind of beliefs, and the social structure that would probably prevail in a State which was at once unconquerable and in a permanent state of 'cold war' with its neighbours.[122]

As a yong man George Orwell has first hand experience with the security apparatus of British empire and its intelligence agencies. Working as an imperial policeman In Birma  gave him considerable responsibility while most of his contemporaries were still at university in England. When he was posted farther east in the Delta to Twante as a sub-divisional officer, he was responsible for the security of some 200,000 people. At the end of 1924, he was promoted to Assistant District Superintendent and posted to Syriam, closer to Rangoon.  A colleague, Roger Beadon, recalled (in a 1969 recording for the BBC) that Blair was fast to learn the language and that before he left Burma, "was able to speak fluently with Burmese priests in 'very high-flown Burmese.'"[27]   Later, he wrote that he felt guilty about his role in the work of empire and he "began to look more closely at his own country and saw that England also had its oppressed ..." In imitation of Jack London, whose writing he admired (particularly The People of the Abyss), Blair started to explore the poorer parts of London.

In 1927 he  resigned from the Indian Imperial Police to become a writer. He drew on his experiences in the Burma police for the novel Burmese Days (1934) and the essays "A Hanging" (1931) and "Shooting an Elephant" (1936). At the outbreak of the Second World War, Orwell's wife Eileen started working in the Censorship Department of the Ministry of Information in central London, staying during the week with her family in Greenwich. In August 1941, Orwell  obtained "war work" when he was taken on full-time by the BBC's Eastern Service. He supervised cultural broadcasts to India to counter propaganda from Nazi Germany designed to undermine Imperial links.  In September 1943, Orwell resigned from the BBC post that he had occupied for two years. In November 1943, Orwell was appointed literary editor at Tribune, where his assistant was his old friend Jon Kimche. Orwell was on staff until early 1945, writing over 80 book reviews[81] and on 3 December 1943 started his regular personal column, "As I Please", usually addressing three or four subjects in each. Animal Farm: A Fairy Story was published in Britain on 17 August 1945, and a year later in the US, on 26 August 1946. In March 1949, while in sanatorium due to deteriorating health, he was visited by Celia Kirwan. Kirwan had just started working for a Foreign Office unit, the Information Research Department, set up by the Labour government to publish anti-communist propaganda, and Orwell gave her a list of people he considered to be unsuitable as IRD authors because of their pro-communist leanings. Orwell's list, not published until 2003, consisted mainly of writers but also included actors and Labour MPs.[95] In sanatorium Orwell received more streptomycin treatment and improved slightly. In June 1949 Nineteen Eighty-Four was published to immediate critical and popular acclaim. Early on the morning of 21 January 1950, an artery burst in Orwell's lungs, killing him at age 46.[97]

As he wrote in the conclusion to his 1940 essay on Charles Dickens,

When one reads any strongly individual piece of writing, one has the impression of seeing a face somewhere behind the page. It is not necessarily the actual face of the writer. I feel this very strongly with Swift, with Defoe, with Fielding, Stendhal, Thackeray, Flaubert, though in several cases I do not know what these people looked like and do not want to know. What one sees is the face that the writer ought to have. Well, in the case of Dickens I see a face that is not quite the face of Dickens's photographs, though it resembles it. It is the face of a man of about forty, with a small beard and a high colour. He is laughing, with a touch of anger in his laughter, but no triumph, no malignity. It is the face of a man who is always fighting against something, but who fights in the open and is not frightened, the face of a man who is generously angry—in other words, of a nineteenth-century liberal, a free intelligence, a type hated with equal hatred by all the smelly little orthodoxies which are now contending for our souls.

George Woodcock suggested that the last two sentences characterised Orwell as much as his subject.[106] Orwell's writing pierced intellectual hypocrisy wherever he found it

Nineteen Eighty-Four is a the second classic dystopian novel by George Orwell (the first was Animal Farm). It was published in 1949 several month before his death.  Orwell managed to predict two negative development after WWII:  the emergence of the  National Security State and stratification of the society into several "parallel" strata with low upward mobility. With the upper strata ( top 0.01% ) possessing almost absolute power over the rest of society by controlling the governing party. He predicted 24x7 total survellance (see Snowden revelations) long before technical capabilities for this were available and only first steps toward it made in Nazi Germany, Stalinist Russia and wartime Britain.  He essentially predicted the situation "Privacy is Dead – Get Over It" that exists today.

His second major achievement is that he predicted emergence of the states,  where the truth didn't exist as such, but is replaced by "artificial reality" created by propaganda picture and systemic, all encompassing brainwashing. The total control of the global mass media has made it possible when desired to portray white as black and black as white.

Truth is what the "Big Brother" said. Rewriting of history is systematic and all-encompassing, to fit the current political needs. Much like in most modern states. The state depicted is a totalitarian one and reminds more Nazi dictatorship, Latin American Junta with death squads, Stalinist Russia or Maoist China then modern Western states, as Orwell did not live to experience Inverted Totalitarism.

But the ideology of inverted totalitarism and its attempt to control the discourse via controlling the language and creation of artificial reality including artificial history was predicted brilliantly.

The book was written near the author death, and that probably partially explains the uncompromising stance that the author demonstrated in the book. Orwell wrote most of it in rather short period of time on the Scottish island of Jura, from 1947 to 1948.

The Last Man in Europe was one of the original titles for the novel, but in a letter dated 22 October 1948 to his publisher Fredric Warburg, eight months before publication, Orwell wrote about hesitating between The Last Man in Europe and Nineteen Forty-Eight.[11] Warburg suggested changing the main title to a more commercial one. Throughout its publication history, Nineteen Eighty-Four has been either banned or legally challenged as subversive or ideologically corrupting, like Aldous Huxley's Brave New World (1932); We (1924), by Yevgeny Zamyatin; Kallocain (1940), by Karin Boye; and Fahrenheit 451 (1951), by Ray Bradbury.

 It was published on 8 June 1949, six months before the author death (21 January 1950). By 1989, it had been translated into sixty-five languages, more than any other novel written in English at the time.

In 2005 the novel was chosen by TIME magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005. It was awarded a place on both lists of Modern Library 100 Best Novels, reaching number 13 on the editor's list, and 6 on the reader's list.[5] In 2003, the novel was listed at number 8 on the BBC's survey The Big Read. Literary scholars consider the Russian dystopian novel We, by Zamyatin, to have strongly influenced Nineteen Eighty-Four.[16][17]

The novel demonstrates stark predictions in several  aspects. In the novel England is now the province of Oceania called Airstrip One. Oceania with the center in the former USA is in perpetual war with other two global states and its alliances are constantly shifting. 

The total control of population

The title of the novel, its themes, the Newspeak language, and the author's surname are often invoked as a warning against excessive control and intrusion by the state,  made possible by modern technical means and computers.

The adjective Orwellian describes a totalitarian dystopia characterized by total surveillance that crashes any resistance, compete government control and subjugation of the 99% of the people in the interest  of the top 1% (the elite).

On August 17, 1975 Senator Frank Church stated on NBC's Meet the Press without mentioning the name of the NSA  (Church Committee - Wikipedia ):
In the need to develop a capacity to know what potential enemies are doing, the United States government has perfected a technological capability that enables us to monitor the messages that go through the air. Now, that is necessary and important to the United States as we look abroad at enemies or potential enemies. We must know, at the same time, that capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left such is the capability to monitor everything—telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn't matter. There would be no place to hide.

If this government ever became a tyrant, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology.

I don't want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.[11]

Omnipresent government surveillance, public mind control, fake leaders

Surviving population is suffering from omnipresent government surveillance, and public mind control, dictated by a political system euphemistically named English Socialism (Ingsoc) which is run under the control of a privileged Inner Party elite (the term which instantly reminds me the term nomenclatura) that persecutes all individualism and independent thinking as thoughtcrimes.

With NSA washing our every step we can say that modern technology exceed the dystopian picture provided by the book. Surveillance in modern societies is really omnipresent due to the fact that most communications are now electronic. As for social system the only replacement that reality made to the book is that this new political system is called neoliberalism. See Henry Giroux On the Rise of Neoliberalism As a Political Ideology . Other then we can state that omnipresent government surveillance, and public mind control rules the day.

After Prism program was revealed in June 2013, Nineteen Eighty-Four became a bestseller on Amazon. As of June 15, 2013 it was #87 in Fiction. As one Amazon reviewer put it:"Note to US Congress and house of representatives: This is a fictional book, not an instruction manual..."

In November 2011, the United States government argued before the US Supreme Court that it wants to continue utilizing GPS tracking of individuals without first seeking a warrant. In response, Justice Stephen Breyer questioned what this means for a democratic society by referencing Nineteen Eighty-Four. Justice Breyer asked

 "If you win this case, then there is nothing to prevent the police or the government from monitoring 24 hours a day the public movement of every citizen of the United States. So if you win, you suddenly produce what sounds like 1984...."[59]

The tyranny described in the book is headed by Big Brother, the quasi-divine Party leader who enjoys an intense cult of personality, but who may not even exist. Much like modern heads of states, who are essentially placeholders, actors hired for the ruling financial oligarchy clans. Big Brother and the Party justify their rule in the name of a supposed greater good. We can say in the name of democracy ;-). 

In this respect too the reality provided to be amazingly close to the fiction. Obama is often described as " a pawn of the moneyed interests before he even took office.  He didn't sell out;  he was a well engineered product with a well targeted brand, selected and groomed for it. " Actually it is interesting to compare the picture of political system in the book with the picture of the political system provided in the post Why The Democrats Got Their Clocks Cleaned (Jesse's Café Américain, Nov 09, 2014)

The Democrats failed to make the most of a great moment in history because there was no Democrat brave enough, independent enough, to energize their party around the mandate for reform given to them overwhelmingly by the people in 2008.

Remember when everyone thought that the Republican party was dead, completely and utterly repudiated in 2008?  And how they have risen from the dead!

Obama was a pawn of the moneyed interests before he even took office.  He didn't sell out;  he was a well engineered product with a well targeted brand, selected and groomed for it.  

Less a politician than a thoroughly modern manager, Obama's primary objectives are to please his shareholders, whomever those may be.   And they were certainly not the people who voted for him.   He is not any kind of progressive or reformer once one scratches the surface.

That became clear in his first 100 days with his appointments.  And in his defense, the Democrats on the whole have been throwing their constituents under the bus for the sake of Wall Street money since 1992.  So Obama was not so much a betrayer as a fake, a member of the Wall Street wing of the Democratic party.  He is always fumbling, and making excuses, but at the end of the day, he did as he was told. 

The Democratic leadership has tried to bridge a gap between representing the people and fattening their wallets, and have ended up pleasing few.  They won't become the party of the moneyed interests because they cannot sell out more deeply than their counterparts.  And as for their traditional constituency in the working class, the only rejoinder is, 'the other guys are worse.'  And the other guys say the same thing to their base about them.  And no one is getting served, except the one percent.

I think that the 'other guys' are going to be worse, and people are just going to have to see how bad things can get, again, before they can get any better. 

From an FDR 1936 campaign speech in Madison Square Garden:
"For nearly four years you have had an Administration which instead of twirling its thumbs has rolled up its sleeves. We will keep our sleeves rolled up.

We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace—business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering.

They had begun to consider the Government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.

Never before in all our history have these forces been so united against one candidate as they stand today. They are unanimous in their hate for me—and I welcome their hatred.

I should like to have it said of my first Administration that in it the forces of selfishness and of lust for power met their match. I should like to have it said of my second Administration that in it these forces met their master."

The concept of Ministry of Truth and modern MSMs

The protagonist of the novel, Winston Smith, is a member of the Outer Party who works for the Ministry of Truth (Minitrue), which is responsible for propaganda and historical revisionism. His job is to re-write past newspaper articles so that the historical record always supports the current party line. Smith is a diligent and skillful worker, but he secretly hates the Party and dreams of rebellion against Big Brother.  His daily task is revising historical records to make the past conform to the ever-changing party line and deleting references to unpersons, people who have been "vaporised", i.e. not only killed by the state, but denied existence even in history or memory.

The picture of modern MSM and the level of brainwashing is less intrusive but no less effective, and journalists proved to be willing accomplices of the regime (Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism in the Service of the Powerful Few)

The smokescreen of propaganda is so think that it is impossible for common people of discern the reality.

They live in artificial reality.

Orwell's invented language, Newspeak, satirizes hypocrisy and evasion by the state. For example the names of the  the ministries became classic and nicely illustrate the concept: 

Many of its terms and concepts became common words in English and other languages. The effect of Nineteen Eighty-Four on the English language is so profound that there is a large set of works that were derived directly from the novel, but now entered common usage.

Among them the concepts of Big Brother, Room 101, the Thought Police, thoughtcrime, unperson, memory hole (oblivion), doublethink (simultaneously holding and believing contradictory beliefs) and Newspeak (ideological language) have become common phrases for denoting totalitarian authority. Doublespeak and groupthink are both deliberate elaborations of doublethink, while the adjective "Orwellian" denotes totalitarian state with omnipresent propaganda machine engaged in not stop brainwashing of citizens. It became apt depiction of official deception, secret surveillance, and manipulation of the past by a modern neoliberal state with the "Oceiania" as the most prominent of them.  The practice of ending words with "-speak" (e.g. corporate-speak) is also stems from the novel. For example Doublespeak.

The social  system

In describing the future social system George Orwell was strongly influence by the book The Managerial Revolution. This book  written in 1941 book in former Trotskyite James Burnham  described World War II as the first in a series of conflicts between managerial powers for control over three great industrial regions of the world—North America, Europe, and East Asia. The geographic scheme and condition of perpetual war are reflected in Orwell’s novel by the ceaseless struggles between Oceania (America with its Atlantic and Pacific outposts), Eurasia (Russian-dominated Europe), and Eastasia (the Orient). The Managerial Revolution itself appears in 1984 as Emmanuel Goldstein’s forbidden book The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.

The Managerial Revolution, attempted to theorize about the future of world capitalism based upon observations of its development in the interwar period. Burnham argued  that capitalism was a temporary form of organization currently being transformed into some non-socialist but Totalitarian rule, strongly influenced by national socialism.

The events depicted in Nineteen Eighty-Four are set in Oceania, one of three inter-continental super-states that divided the world among themselves after a global war. Most of the action takes place in London, the "chief city of Airstrip One", the Oceanic province that "had once been called England or Britain". Posters of the Party leader, Big Brother, bearing the caption "BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU", dominate the city, while the ubiquitous telescreen (transceiving television set) monitors the private and public lives of the populace.

The social  system of Oceania consists of three classes:

As the government, the Party controls the population with four ministries: the Ministry of Peace (Minipax), which wages wars, the Ministry of Plenty (Miniplenty), which deals with economic affairs (rationing and starvation), the Ministry of Love (Miniluv), which deals with law and order (torture), the Ministry of Truth (Minitrue), which deals with propaganda (news, entertainment, education and art)

The Plot

The story of Winston Smith begins on 4 April 1984:

"It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen"; yet he is uncertain of the true date, given the régime’s continual rewriting and manipulation of history. His memories and his reading of the proscribed book, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism, by Emmanuel Goldstein, reveal that after the Second World War, the United Kingdom fell to civil war and then was absorbed into Oceania. Simultaneously, the USSR conquered mainland Europe and established the second superstate of Eurasia. The third superstate, Eastasia, comprises the regions of East Asia and Southeast Asia. The three superstates wage perpetual war for the remaining unconquered lands of the world, forming and breaking alliances as is convenient.

From his childhood (1949–53), Winston remembers the Atomic Wars fought in Europe, western Russia, and North America. It is unclear to him what occurred first: the Party's victory in the civil war, the US annexation of the British Empire, or the war in which Colchester was bombed. However, his strengthening memories and the story of his family's dissolution suggest that the atomic bombings occurred first (the Smiths took refuge in a tube station), followed by civil war featuring "confused street fighting in London itself", and the societal postwar reorganisation, which the Party retrospectively calls "the Revolution".

Oceanian society: Big Brother atop, the Party in middle, the Proles at bottom, in 1984. The story of Winston Smith presents the world in the year 1984, after a global atomic war, via his perception of life in Airstrip One (England or Britain), a province of Oceania, one of the world's three superstates; his intellectual rebellion against the Party and illicit romance with Julia; and his consequent imprisonment, interrogation, torture, and re-education by the Thinkpol in the Miniluv.

Principal characters in the book are inston Smith—the protagonist, is a phlegmatic everyman. Julia—Winston's lover, is a covert "rebel from the waist downwards" who publicly espouses Party doctrine as a member of the fanatical Junior Anti-Sex League. Big Brother—the dark-eyed, mustachioed embodiment of the Party who rule Oceania. O'Brien—a member of the Inner Party who poses as a member of The Brotherhood, the counter-revolutionary resistance, in order to deceive, trap, and capture Winston and Julia. Emmanuel Goldstein—a former leader of the Party, the counter-revolutionary author of The Book, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism, and leader of the Brotherhood. He is the symbolic Enemy of the State—the national nemesis who ideologically unites the people of Oceania with the Party, especially during the Two Minutes Hate, and other fearmongering by the Inner Party. It is unknown whether he is real or a fabrication of the Party itself for the purpose of propaganda.

Winston Smith

Winston Smith is an intellectual, a member of the Outer Party (middle class), who lives in the ruins of London, and who grew up in some long post-World War II England, during the revolution and the civil war after which the Party assumed power. At some point his parents and sister disappeared, and he was placed in an orphanage for training and subsequent employment as an Outer Party civil servant. He lives an austere existence in a one-room flat on a subsistence diet of black bread and synthetic meals washed down with Victory-brand gin. He keeps a journal of negative thoughts and opinions about the Party and Big Brother, which, if uncovered by the Thought Police, would warrant death. The flat has an alcove, beside the telescreen, where he apparently cannot be seen, and thus believes he has some privacy, while writing in his journal: "Thoughtcrime does not entail death. Thoughtcrime IS death." The telescreens (in every public area, and the quarters of the Party's members), have hidden microphones and cameras. These devices, alongside informers, permit the Thought Police to spy upon everyone and so identify anyone who might endanger the Party's régime; children, most of all, are indoctrinated to spy and inform on suspected thought-criminals – especially their parents.

At the Minitrue, Winston is an editor responsible for historical revisionism, concording the past to the Party's ever-changing official version of the past; thus making the government of Oceania seem omniscient. As such, he perpetually rewrites records and alters photographs, rendering the deleted people as "unpersons"; the original documents are incinerated in a "memory hole." Despite enjoying the intellectual challenges of historical revisionism, he becomes increasingly fascinated by the true past and tries to learn more about it.

Julia

One day, at the Minitrue, as Winston assists a woman who has fallen down, she surreptitiously hands him a folded paper note; later, at his desk he covertly reads the message: I LOVE YOU. The woman is "Julia," a young dark haired mechanic who repairs the Minitrue novel-writing machines. Before that occasion, Winston had loathed the sight of her, since women tended to be the most fanatical supporters of Ingsoc. He particularly loathed her because of her membership in the fanatical Junior Anti-Sex League. Winston fantasises about making love to her but he would want to kill her at the moment of climax. Additionally, Julia was the type of woman he believed he could not attract: young and puritanical. Nonetheless, his hostility towards her vanishes upon reading the message. As it turns out, Julia is a thoughtcriminal too, and hates the Party as much as he does.

Cautiously, Winston and Julia begin a love affair, at first meeting in the country, at a clearing in the woods, then at the belfry of a ruined church, and afterwards in a rented room atop an antiques shop in a proletarian neighbourhood of London. There, they think themselves safe and unobserved, because the rented bedroom has no apparent telescreen, but, unknown to Winston and Julia, the Thought Police were aware of their love affair.

Later, when the Inner Party member O'Brien approaches him, Winston believes he is an agent of the Brotherhood, a secret, counter-revolutionary organisation meant to destroy the Party. The approach opens a secret communication between them; and, on pretext of giving him a copy of the latest edition of the Dictionary of Newspeak, O'Brien gives Winston the Book, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism, by Emmanuel Goldstein, the infamous and publicly reviled leader of the Brotherhood. The Book explains the concept of perpetual war, the true meanings of the slogans WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH, and how the régime of the Party can be overthrown by means of the political awareness of the Proles.

The Thought Police capture Winston and Julia in their bedroom and deliver them to the Ministry of Love for interrogation. Charrington, the shop keeper who rented the room to them, reveals himself as an officer of the Thought Police. O'Brien also reveals himself to be a Thought Police leader, and admits to luring Winston and Julia into a trap used by the Thought Police to root out suspected thoughtcriminals. After a prolonged regimen of systematic beatings and psychologically draining interrogation, O'Brien, now Smith's interrogator, tortures Winston with electroshock, showing him how, through controlled manipulation of perception (e.g. seeing whatever number of fingers held up that the Party demands one should see, whatever the apparent reality, i.e. 2+2=5), Winston can "cure" himself of his "insanity" – his manifest hatred for the Party. In long, complex conversations, he explains the Inner Party's motivation: complete and absolute power, mocking Winston's assumption that it was somehow altruistic and "for the greater good." Asked if the Brotherhood exists, O'Brien replies that this is something Winston will never know; it will remain an unsolvable quandary in his mind. During a torture session, his imprisonment in the Ministry of Love is explained: "There are three stages in your reintegration... There is learning, there is understanding, and there is acceptance," i.e. of the Party's assertion of reality.

Confession and betrayal

In the first stage of political re-education, Winston Smith admits to and confesses to crimes he did and did not commit, implicating anyone and everyone, including Julia. In the second stage, O'Brien makes Winston understand that he is rotting away; by this time he is little more than skin and bones. Winston counters that: "I have not betrayed Julia"; O'Brien agrees, Winston had not betrayed Julia because he "had not stopped loving her; his feelings toward her had remained the same." One night, in his cell, Winston awakens, screaming: "Julia! Julia! Julia, my love! Julia!" O'Brien rushes into the cell and sends him to Room 101, the most feared room in the Ministry of Love, where resides each prisoner's worst fear, which is forced upon him or her. In Room 101 is Acceptance, the final stage of the political re-education of Winston Smith, whose primal fear of rats is invoked when a wire cage holding hungry rats is fitted onto his face. As the rats are about to reach Winston’s face, he shouts: "Do it to Julia!" thus betraying her, and relinquishing his love for her. At torture’s end, upon accepting the doctrine of the Party, Winston now loves Big Brother and is reintegrated into Oceania society.

Re-encountering Julia

Some time after being restored to orthodox thought, Winston encounters Julia in a park. It turns out that Julia has endured a similar ordeal to Winston, and has also been purged of rebellion. Each admits betraying the other:

"I betrayed you," she said baldly. "I betrayed you," he said. She gave him another quick look of dislike. "Sometimes," she said, "they threaten you with something – something you can't stand up to, can't even think about. And then you say, 'Don't do it to me, do it to somebody else, do it to so-and-so.' And perhaps you might pretend, afterwards, that it was only a trick and that you just said it to make them stop and didn't really mean it. But that isn't true. At the time when it happens you do mean it. You think there's no other way of saving yourself and you're quite ready to save yourself that way. You want it to happen to the other person. You don't give a damn what they suffer. All you care about is yourself." "All you care about is yourself," he echoed. "And after that, you don't feel the same toward the other person any longer." "No," he said, "you don't feel the same."

Throughout, a song recurs in Winston's mind: Under the spreading chestnut tree I sold you and you sold me— The lyrics are an adaptation of ‘Go no more a-rushing’, a popular English campfire song from the 1920s, that was a popular success for Glenn Miller in 1939.

Conversion

An alcoholic Winston sits by himself in the Chestnut Tree Cafe, still troubled by false memories which he is convinced are indeed false. He tries to put them out of his mind when suddenly a news bulletin announces Oceania's decisive victory over Eurasia for control of Africa. A raucous celebration begins outside, and Winston imagines himself a part of it. As he looks up in admiration at a portrait of Big Brother, Winston realises that "the final, indispensable, healing change" within his own mind had only been completed at just that moment. He engages in a "blissful dream" in which he offers a full, public confession of his crimes and is executed. He feels that all is well now that he has at last achieved a victory over himself, ending his previous "stubborn, self-willed exile" from the love of Big Brother — a love Winston now happily returns.

Secondary characters

Aaronson, Jones, and Rutherford—Former members of the Inner Party whom Winston vaguely remembers as among the original leaders of the Revolution, long before he had heard of Big Brother. They confessed to treasonable conspiracies with foreign powers and were then executed in the political purges of the 1960s. In between their confessions and executions, Winston saw them drinking in the Chestnut Tree Café — with broken noses, suggesting that their confessions had been obtained by torture. Later, in the course of his editorial work, Winston sees newspaper evidence contradicting their confessions, but drops it into the waste disposal pipe. Eleven years later, he is confronted with the same photograph during his interrogation. Ampleforth—Winston's one-time Records Department colleague who was imprisoned for leaving the word "God" in a Kipling poem; Winston encounters him at the Miniluv. Ampleforth is a dreamer and an intellectual who takes pleasure in his work, and respects poetry and language, which traits and qualities cause him disfavour with the Party. Charrington—An officer of the Thought Police posing as a sympathetic antiques-shop keeper. Katharine—The emotionally indifferent wife whom Winston "can't get rid of". Despite disliking sexual intercourse, Katharine continued with Winston because it was their "duty to the Party". Although she was a "goodthinkful" ideologue, they separated because she could not bear children. Parsons—Winston's naïve neighbour, and an ideal member of the Outer Party: an uneducated, suggestible man who is utterly loyal to the Party, and fully believes in its perfect image. He is socially active and participates in the Party activities for his social class. Although friendly towards Smith, and despite his political conformity, he punishes his bully-boy son for firing a catapult at Winston. Later, as a prisoner, Winston sees Parsons is in the Ministry of Love, because his daughter had reported him to the Thought Police after overhearing him speak against the Party whilst he slept. Mrs. Parsons—Parsons's wife is a wan and hapless woman who is intimidated by her own children, who are members of the Party Youth League and represent the new generation of Oceanian citizens, without memory of life before Big Brother, and without family ties or emotional sentiment; the model society moulded by the Inner Party. Syme—Winston's colleague at the Ministry of Truth, whom the Party "vaporised" because he remained a lucidly thinking intellectual. He was a lexicographer who developed the language and the dictionary of Newspeak, in the course of which he enjoyed destroying words, and wholeheartedly believed that Newspeak would replace Oldspeak (Standard English) by the year 2050. Although Syme's politically orthodox opinions aligned with Party doctrine, Winston noted that "He is too intelligent. He sees too clearly and speaks too plainly". After noting that Syme's name was deleted from the members list of the Chess Club, Winston infers he became an unperson who never had existed. Goldstein's book says that "Between the two branches of the Party there is a certain amount of interchange, but only so much as will ensure that weaklings are excluded from the Inner Party and that ambitious members of the Outer Party are made harmless by allowing them to rise." It is unknown whether Syme has been killed or promoted in the Inner Party in another province.

Ingsoc

 (English Socialism), is the regnant ideology and pseudo-philosophy of Oceania, and Newspeak is its official language, of official documents.

Ministries of Oceania

In London, the Airstrip One capital city, Oceania's four government ministries are in pyramids (300 metres high), the façades of which display the Party's three slogans. The ministries' names are antonymous doublethink to their true functions: "The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation". (Part II, Chapter IX — The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism) Ministry of Peace (Newspeak: Minipax) Minipax supports Oceania's perpetual war.

The primary aim of modern warfare (in accordance with the principles of doublethink, this aim is simultaneously recognized and not recognized by the directing brains of the Inner Party) is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living. Ever since the end of the nineteenth century, the problem of what to do with the surplus of consumption goods has been latent in industrial society. At present, when few human beings even have enough to eat, this problem is obviously not urgent, and it might not have become so, even if no artificial processes of destruction had been at work. Ministry of Plenty (Newspeak: Miniplenty) The Ministry of Plenty rations and controls food, goods, and domestic production; every fiscal quarter, the Miniplenty publishes false claims of having raised the standard of living, when it has, in fact, reduced rations, availability, and production. The Minitrue substantiates the Miniplenty claims by revising historical records to report numbers supporting the current, "increased rations". Ministry of Truth (Newspeak: Minitrue) The Ministry of Truth controls information: news, entertainment, education, and the arts. Winston Smith works in the Minitrue RecDep (Records Department), "rectifying" historical records to concord with Big Brother's current pronouncements, thus everything the Party says is true. Ministry of Love (Newspeak: Miniluv) The Ministry of Love identifies, monitors, arrests, and converts real and imagined dissidents. In Winston's experience, the dissident is beaten and tortured, then, when near-broken, is sent to Room 101 to face "the worst thing in the world" — until love for Big Brother and the Party replaces dissension.

Doublethink

Main article: Doublethink

The keyword here is blackwhite. Like so many Newspeak words, this word has two mutually contradictory meanings. Applied to an opponent, it means the habit of impudently claiming that black is white, in contradiction of the plain facts. Applied to a Party member, it means a loyal willingness to say that black is white when Party discipline demands this. But it means also the ability to believe that black is white, and more, to know that black is white, and to forget that one has ever believed the contrary. This demands a continuous alteration of the past, made possible by the system of thought which really embraces all the rest, and which is known in Newspeak as doublethink. Doublethink is basically the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.

— Part II, Chapter IX — The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism

Perpetual War: The news report Oceania has captured Africa, 1984. Three perpetually warring totalitarian super-states control the world:[30] Oceania (ideology: Ingsoc, i.e., English Socialism); its core territories are the Western Hemisphere, the British Isles, Australasia and Southern Africa. Eurasia (ideology: Neo-Bolshevism); its core territories are Continental Europe and Russia, including Siberia. Eastasia (ideology: Obliteration of the Self, i.e., "Death worship"); its core territories are China, Japan, Korea, and Indochina.

The perpetual war is fought for control of the "disputed area" lying "between the frontiers of the super-states", it forms "a rough parallelogram with its corners at Tangier, Brazzaville, Darwin and Hong Kong",[30] thus Northern Africa, the Middle East, India and Indonesia are where the super-states capture and utilise slave-labour. Fighting also takes place between Eurasia and Eastasia in Manchuria, Mongolia and Central Asia, and all three powers battle one another over various Atlantic and Pacific islands.

Goldstein's book, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism, explains that the super-states' ideologies are alike and that the public's ignorance of this fact is imperative so that they might continue believing in the detestability of the opposing ideologies. The only references to the exterior world for the Oceanian citizenry (the Outer Party and the Proles), are Minitrue maps and propaganda ensuring their belief in "the war".

The Revolution

Winston Smith's memory and Emmanuel Goldstein's book communicate some of the history that precipitated the Revolution; Eurasia was established after World War II (1939–45), when US and Imperial soldiers withdrew from continental Europe, thus the USSR conquered Europe against slight opposition. Eurasia does not include the British Empire because the US annexed it, as well as Latin America, southern Africa, Australasia, and Canada, thus establishing Oceania and gaining control over a quarter of the planet. The annexation of Britain was part of the Atomic Wars that provoked civil war; per the Party, it was not a revolution but a coup d'état that installed a ruling élite derived from the native intelligentsia. Eastasia, the last superstate established, comprises the Asian lands conquered by China and Japan. Although Eurasia prevented Eastasia from matching it in size, its larger populace compensate for that handicap. Precise chronology is unclear, but most of that global reorganisation occurred between 1945 and the 1960s.

The War

See also: Perpetual war

In 1984, there is a perpetual war among Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia, the super-states which emerged from the atomic global war. "The book", The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism by Emmanuel Goldstein, explains that each state is so strong it cannot be defeated, even with the combined forces of two super-states—despite changing alliances. To hide such contradictions, history is re-written to explain that the (new) alliance always was so; the populaces accustomed to doublethink accept it. The war is not fought in Oceanian, Eurasian or Eastasian territory but in the arctic wastes and a disputed zone comprising the sea and land from Tangiers (northern Africa) to Darwin (Australia). At the start, Oceania and Eastasia are allies combatting Eurasia in northern Africa and the Malabar Coast.

That alliance ends and Oceania allied with Eurasia fights Eastasia, a change which occurred during the Hate Week dedicated to creating patriotic fervour for the Party's perpetual war. The public are blind to the change; in mid-sentence an orator changes the name of the enemy from "Eurasia" to "Eastasia" without pause. When the public are enraged at noticing that the wrong flags and posters are displayed they tear them down—thus the origin of the idiom "We've always been at war with Eastasia"; later the Party claims to have captured Africa.

"The book" explains that the purpose of the unwinnable, perpetual war is to consume human labour and commodities, hence the economy of a super-state cannot support economic equality (a high standard of life) for every citizen. Goldstein also details an Oceanian strategy of attacking enemy cities with atomic rockets before invasion, yet dismisses it as unfeasible and contrary to the war's purpose; despite the atomic bombing of cities in the 1950s the super-states stopped such warfare lest it imbalance the powers. The military technology in 1984 differs little from that of World War II, yet strategic bomber aeroplanes were replaced with Rocket Bombs, helicopters were heavily used as weapons of war (while they didn't figure in WW2 in any form but prototypes) and surface combat units have been all but replaced by immense and unsinkable Floating Fortresses, island-like contraptions concentrating the firepower of a whole naval task force in a single, semi-mobile platform (in the novel one is said to have been anchored between Iceland and the Faroe Islands, suggesting a preference for sea lane interdiction and denial).

Living standards

In 1984, the society of Airstrip One lives in poverty; hunger, disease and filth are the norms and ruined cities and towns the consequence of the civil war, the atomic wars and purported enemy (but quite possibly self-serving Oceanian) rockets. Social decay and wrecked buildings surround Winston; aside from the ministerial pyramids, little of London was rebuilt. The standard of living of the populace is low; almost everything, especially consumer goods, is scarce and available goods are of low quality; half of the Oceanian populace go barefoot – despite the Party reporting increased boot production. The Party claims that this poverty is a necessary sacrifice for the war effort; "the book" reports that this is partially correct, because the purpose of perpetual war is consuming surplus industrial production.

The Inner Party upper class of Oceanian society enjoy the highest standard of living. O'Brien resides in a clean and comfortable apartment, with a pantry well-stocked with quality foodstuffs (wine, coffee, sugar, etc.), denied to the general populace, the Outer Party and the Proles, who consume synthetic foodstuffs; "Victory" gin and "Victory" cigarettes are of low quality.[31] The brand "Victory" is taken from the low-quality "Victory" cigarettes (also known as Vs), made in India, that were widely smoked in Britain and by British soldiers during World War II when American cigarettes could not easily be imported across the U-boat-infested waters of the North Atlantic. Winston is astonished that the lifts in O'Brien's building function and that the telescreens can be switched off. The Inner Party are attended to by slaves captured in the disputed zone. O'Brien has an Asian manservant, Martin.

The proles live in poverty and are kept sedated with alcohol, pornography and a national lottery, yet the proles are freer and less intimidated than the middle class Outer Party, and jeer at the telescreens. "The Book" reports that the state of things derives from the observation that the middle class, not the lower class, traditionally started revolutions, therefore tight control of the middle class penetrates their minds in determining their quotidian lives, and potential rebels are politically neutralised via promotion to the Inner Party or "reintegration" by Miniluv; nonetheless Winston believed that "the future belonged to the proles".[32]

Themes

Nationalism

Nineteen Eighty-Four expands upon the subjects summarised in the essay Notes on Nationalism (1945) about the lack of vocabulary needed to explain the unrecognised phenomena behind certain political forces. In Nineteen Eighty-Four, the Party's artificial, minimalist language 'Newspeak' addresses the matter.

Positive nationalism: Oceanians' perpetual love for Big Brother; Neo-Toryism, Celtic nationalism and British Israelism are (as Orwell argues) defined by love. Negative nationalism: Oceanians' perpetual hatred for Emmanuel Goldstein; Stalinism, Anglophobia and antisemitism are (as Orwell argues) defined by hatred.

Transferred nationalism: In mid-sentence an orator changes the enemy of Oceania; the crowd instantly transfers their hatred to the new enemy. Transferred nationalism swiftly redirects emotions from one power unit to another (e.g., Communism, Pacifism, Colour Feeling and Class Feeling). This happened during a Party Rally against the original enemy Eurasia, when the orator suddenly switches enemy in midsentence, the crowd goes wild and destroys the posters that are now against their new friend (Eurasia) and many say that this must be the act of an agent of their new enemy (and former friend) Eastasia, even though many of the crowd must have put up the posters before the rally. The enemy has always been Eastasia.

O'Brien concludes: "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power."

Futurology

In the book, Inner Party member O'Brien describes the Party's vision of the future:

There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always-do not forget this, Winston-always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face-forever.

-Part III, Chapter III, Nineteen Eighty-Four

This contrasts the essay "England Your England" (1941) with the essay "The Lion and the Unicorn: Socialism and the English Genius" (1941):

The intellectuals who hope to see it Russianised or Germanised will be disappointed. The gentleness, the hypocrisy, the thoughtlessness, the reverence for law and the hatred of uniforms will remain, along with the suet puddings and the misty skies. It needs some very great disaster, such as prolonged subjugation by a foreign enemy, to destroy a national culture. The Stock Exchange will be pulled down, the horse plough will give way to the tractor, the country houses will be turned into children's holiday camps, the Eton and Harrow match will be forgotten, but England will still be England, an everlasting animal stretching into the future and the past, and, like all living things, having the power to change out of recognition and yet remain the same.

The geopolitical climate of Nineteen Eighty-Four resembles the précis of James Burnham's ideas in the essay "James Burnham and the Managerial Revolution"[34] (1946):

These people will eliminate the old capitalist class, crush the working class, and so organize society that all power and economic privilege remain in their own hands. Private property rights will be abolished, but common ownership will not be established. The new 'managerial' societies will not consist of a patchwork of small, independent states, but of great super-states grouped round the main industrial centres in Europe, Asia, and America. These super-states will fight among themselves for possession of the remaining uncaptured portions of the earth, but will probably be unable to conquer one another completely. Internally, each society will be hierarchical, with an aristocracy of talent at the top and a mass of semi-slaves at the bottom.

Censorship

A major theme of Nineteen Eighty-Four is censorship, especially in the Ministry of Truth, where photographs are doctored and public archives rewritten to rid them of "unpersons" (i.e. persons who have been arrested, whom the Party has decided to erase from history). On the telescreens figures for all types of production are grossly exaggerated (or simply invented) to indicate an ever-growing economy, when the reality is the opposite. One small example of the endless censorship is when Winston is charged with the task of eliminating reference to an unperson in a newspaper article. He proceeds to write an article about Comrade Ogilvy, a fictional party member, who displayed great heroism by leaping into the sea from a helicopter so that the dispatches he was carrying would not fall into enemy hands.

Surveillance

The inhabitants of Oceania, particularly the Outer Party members, have no real privacy. Many of them live in apartments equipped with two-way telescreens, so that they may be watched or listened to at any time. Similar telescreens are found at workstations and in public places, along with hidden microphones. Written correspondence is routinely opened and read by the government before it is delivered. The Thought Police employ undercover agents, who pose as normal citizens and report any person with subversive tendencies. Children are encouraged to report suspicious persons to the government, and some even denounce their own parents.

This surveillance allows for effective control of the citizenry. The smallest sign of rebellion, even something so small as a facial expression, can result in immediate arrest and imprisonment. Thus, citizens (and particularly party members) are compelled to absolute obedience at all times.

The Newspeak appendix

Main article: Newspeak

"The Principles of Newspeak" is an academic essay appended to the novel. It describes the development of Newspeak, the Party's minimalist artificial language meant to ideologically align thought and action with the principles of Ingsoc by making "all other modes of thought impossible". (For linguistic theories about how language may direct thought, see the Sapir–Whorf hypothesis.)[35] Note also the possible influence of the German book LTI - Lingua Tertii Imperii, published in 1947, which details how the Nazis controlled society by controlling language.

Whether or not the Newspeak appendix implies a hopeful end to Nineteen Eighty-Four remains a critical debate, as it is in Standard English and refers to Newspeak, Ingsoc, the Party, et cetera, in the past tense (i.e., "Relative to our own, the Newspeak vocabulary was tiny, and new ways of reducing it were constantly being devised", p. 422); in this vein, some critics (Atwood,[36] Benstead,[37] Pynchon[38]) claim that, for the essay's author, Newspeak and the totalitarian government are past. The countervailing view is that since the novel has no frame story, Orwell wrote the essay in the same past tense as the novel, with "our" denoting his and the reader's contemporaneous reality.

Some sources for literary motifs

Nineteen Eighty-Four uses themes from life in the Soviet Union and wartime life in Great Britain as sources for many of its motifs.

The statement "2 + 2 = 5", used to torment Winston Smith during his interrogation, was a Communist party slogan from the second five-year plan, which encouraged fulfilment of the five-year plan in four years. The slogan was seen in electric lights on Moscow house-fronts, billboards, etc.[39]

The switch of Oceania's allegiance from Eastasia to Eurasia is evocative of the Soviet Union's changing relations with Nazi Germany, who were open adversaries until the signing of the Treaty of Non-Aggression. Thereafter, and continuing until the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union, no criticism of Germany was allowed in the Soviet press, and all references to prior party lines stopped.

The description of Emmanuel Goldstein, with a goatee beard, evokes the image of Leon Trotsky. The film of Goldstein during the two-minutes hate is described as showing him being transformed into a bleating goat. This image was used in a propaganda film during the Kino-eye period of Soviet film, which showed Trotsky transforming into a goat.[40] Goldstein's book is redolent of Trotsky's highly critical analysis of the USSR "The Revolution Betrayed", published in 1936.

The omnipresent images of Big Brother, described as having a mustache, evokes the cult of personality built up around Joseph Stalin and Adolph Hitler.

The news in Oceania emphasised production figures, just as it did in the Soviet Union, where record-setting in factories (by "Heroes of Socialist Labor") was especially glorified. The best known of these was Alexey Stakhanov, who purportedly set a record for coal mining in 1935.

The tortures of the Ministry of Love evoke the procedures used Gestapo and NKVD in their interrogations, including the use of rubber truncheons, being forbidden to put your hands in your pockets, remaining in brightly lit rooms for days, and the victim being shown a mirror after their physical collapse.

Orwell's "Spies", a youth organization taught to look for enemies of the state, appears to be based on the Hitler Youth

A poster showing young Pioneers as future Komsomol members. The "Junior Anti-Sex league" was based on the Young Communists; the komsomol and Bund Deutscher Mädel (the League of German Girls).

The random bombing of Airstrip One is based on the Buzz bombs, which struck England at random in 1944-1945.

The Thought Crime motif is drawn from Kempeitai, the Japanese wartime secret police, who arrested people for "unpatriotic" thoughts.

The confessions of the "Thought Criminals" Rutherford, Aaronson and Jones are based on the show trials of the 1930s, which included fabricated confessions by prominent Bolsheviks Nikolai Bukharin, Grigory Zinoviev and Lev Kamenev to the effect that they were being paid by the Nazi government to undermine the Soviet regime under Leon Trotsky's direction.

The song "Under the Spreading Chestnut Tree" ("Under the spreading chestnut tree, I sold you, and you sold me") was based on Glenn Miller's 1939 song of the same name ("Under the spreading chestnut tree, Where I knelt upon my knee, We were as happy as could be, 'Neath the spreading chestnut tree.") The song has its origins in the 1920s, when it was a camp song, sung with corresponding movements (like touching your chest when you sing "chest", and touching your head when you sing "nut"). The original title was 'Go no more a-rushing'. Under these lyrics, the song was published as early as 1891.

The "Hates" (two-minutes hate and hate week) were inspired by the constant rallies sponsored by party organs both in Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia.

The contractions of words, in which "Ministry of Truth" was shortened to "Minitrue" and "English Socialism" to "Ingsoc" was inspired by the Soviet habit of combining words. Smert Shpionam ("death to spies", a sub-division of the NKVD) was shortened to "Smersh". Dialectical Materialism was similarly shortened to "DiaMat", and The Communist International was referred to as the Comintern.

"Vaporising" criminals (a metaphor for execution) is based on the Soviet word "liquidation" a vague term that usually meant execution or "Internal Exile" to the gulag labour camps. Nikolai Yezhov, walking with Stalin in the top photo from the 1930s. Following his execution, Yezhov was edited out of the photo by Soviet censors.[44] Yezhov became an "unperson".

Winston Smith's job, "revising history" (and the "unperson" motif) are based on the Stalinist habit of airbrushing images of 'fallen' people from group photographs and removing references to them in books and newspapers. In one well-known example, the Soviet encyclopaedia had an article about Lavrentiy Beria. When he fell in 1953, and was subsequently executed, institutes that had the encyclopaedia were sent an article about the Bering Strait, with instructions to paste it over the article about Beria.[46]

Big Brother's "Orders of the Day" were inspired by Stalin's regular wartime orders, called by the same name. A small collection of the more political of these have been published (together with his wartime speeches) in English as "On the Great Patriotic War of the Soviet Union" By Joseph Stalin. Like Big Brother's Orders of the day, Stalin's frequently lauded heroic individuals,[49] like Comrade Ogilvy, the fictitious hero Winston Smith invented to 'rectify' (fabricate) a Big Brother Order of the day.

The Ingsoc slogan "Our new, happy life", repeated from telescreens, evokes Stalin's 1935 statement, which became a CPSU slogan, "Life has become better, Comrades; life has become more cheerful.

Influences

During World War II (1939–1945) Orwell believed that British democracy as it existed before 1939 would not survive the war, the question being "Would it end via Fascist coup d'état (from above) or via Socialist revolution (from below). Later he admitted that events proved him wrong: "What really matters is that I fell into the trap of assuming that 'the war and the revolution are inseparable'".

Thematically Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) and Animal Farm (1945) share the betrayed revolution; the person's subordination to the collective; rigorously enforced class distinctions (Inner Party, Outer Party, Proles); the cult of personality; concentration camps; Thought Police; compulsory regimented daily exercise and youth leagues. Oceania resulted from the US annexation of the British Empire to counter the Asian peril to Australia and New Zealand. It is a naval power whose militarism venerates the sailors of the floating fortresses, from which battle is given to recapturing India, the "Jewel in the Crown" of the British Empire.

Much of Oceanic society is based upon the propaganda strategies that emerged after WWI and fully florished during WWII. A similar thing also happened during the French Revolution in which many of the original leaders of the Revolution were later put to death, for example Danton who was put to death by Robespierre, and then later Robespierre himself met the same fate.

In his 1946 essay Why I Write, Orwell explains that the serious works he wrote since the Spanish Civil War (1936–39) were "written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic socialism".

Nineteen Eighty-Four is a cautionary tale about revolution betrayed by totalitarian defenders previously proposed in Homage to Catalonia (1938) and Animal Farm (1945), while Coming Up for Air (1939) celebrates the personal and political freedoms lost in Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949). Biographer Michael Shelden notes Orwell's Edwardian childhood at Henley-on-Thames as the golden country; being bullied at St Cyprian's School as his empathy with victims; his life in the Indian Burma Police – the techniques of violence and censorship in the BBC - capricious authority.

Other influences include Darkness at Noon (1940) and The Yogi and the Commissar (1945) by Arthur Koestler; The Iron Heel (1908) by Jack London; 1920: Dips into the Near Future[53] by John A. Hobson; Brave New World (1932) by Aldous Huxley; We (1921) by Yevgeny Zamyatin which he reviewed in 1946;[54] and The Managerial Revolution (1940) by James Burnham predicting perpetual war among three totalitarian superstates. Orwell told Jacintha Buddicom that he would write a novel stylistically like A Modern Utopia (1905) by H. G. Wells.

Extrapolating from World War II, the novel's pastiche parallels the politics and rhetoric at war's end-the changed alliances at the "Cold War's" (1945–91) beginning; the Ministry of Truth derives from the BBC's overseas service, controlled by the Ministry of Information; Room 101 derives from a conference room at BBC Broadcasting House; the Senate House of the University of London, containing the Ministry of Information is the architectural inspiration for the Minitrue; the post-war decrepitude derives from the socio-political life of the UK and the USA, i.e. the impoverished Britain of 1948 losing its Empire despite newspaper-reported imperial triumph; and war ally but peace-time foe, Soviet Russia became Eurasia.

The term "English Socialism" has precedents in his wartime writings; in the essay "The Lion and the Unicorn: Socialism and the English Genius" (1941), he said that "the war and the revolution are inseparable... the fact that we are at war has turned Socialism from a textbook word into a realisable policy" - because Britain's superannuated social class system hindered the war effort and only a socialist economy would defeat Adolf Hitler. Given the middle class's grasping this, they too would abide socialist revolution and that only reactionary Britons would oppose it, thus limiting the force revolutionaries would need to take power. An English Socialism would come about which "... will never lose touch with the tradition of compromise and the belief in a law that is above the State. It will shoot traitors, but it will give them a solemn trial beforehand and occasionally it will acquit them. It will crush any open revolt promptly and cruelly, but it will interfere very little with the spoken and written word".

Adaptations in film, radio, television, and stage

Amazon Reviews

Gregg Silk - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)

Official Strategy Of Mandatory Poverty Through Eternal War, June 14, 2013

This review is from: 1984: 60th-Anniversary Edition (Plume) (Paperback)

The key part of the book is near the end where O'Brien is brainwashing Winston and explaining how the system works.

The Party's main problem is to keep the middle and lower classes hungry and fearful, and to make sure that the products of automation don't supply them with comfort and leisure.

The only way to do this is through eternal war, so that all excess production goes to weapons that are blown up or sunk in the ocean. It doesn't even matter if the war is real or not - the obsolete weapons are scrapped anyway. The important thing is to keep people poor so the class structure survives with the party on top.

The other key is to keep the population in a constant state of screaming enraged hatred. Anyone that looks "foreign" will get rounded up and executed. The country is saturated in phony "patriotism" over a war that probably doesn't even exist.

The government also pushes a national Puritanical drive to stamp out sex. And of course they use torture on a massive scale, and they apply it more or less randomly to get false confessions.

The only thing that make the book more anti-communist than anti-Fascist is that the Christian churches have been closed. The Nazis did not close churches, only synagogues.

Orwell was a life-long socialist but not a pacifist.

Julie - See all my reviews
The History Lesson You Wish you Had, March 3, 1998

George Orwell's final novel, 1984, was written amidst the anti-communist hysteria of the cold war. But unlike Orwell's other famous political satire, Animal Farm, this novel is filled with bleak cynicism and grim pessimism about the human race. When it was written, 1984 stood as a warning against the dangerous probabilities of communism. And now today, after communism has crumbled with the Berlin Wall; 1984 has come back to tell us a tale of mass media, data mining, and their harrowing consequences.

It's 1984 in London, a city in the new überstate of Oceania, which contains what was once England, Western Europe and North America. Our hero, Winston Smith works in the Ministry of Truth altering documents that contradict current government statements and opinions. Winston begins to remember the past that he has worked so hard to destroy, and turns against The Party. Even Winston's quiet, practically undetectable form of anarchism is dangerous in a world filled with thought police and the omnipresent two-way telescreen. He fears his inevitable capture and punishment, but feels no compulsion to change his ways.

Winston's dismal observations about human nature are accompanied by the hope that good will triumph over evil; a hope that Orwell does not appear to share. The people of Oceania are in the process of stripping down the English language to its bones. Creating Newspeak, which Orwell uses only for examples and ideas which exist only in the novel. The integration of Newspeak into the conversation of the book. One of the new words created is doublethink, the act of believing that two conflicting realities exist. Such as when Winston sees a photograph of a non-person, but must reason that that person does not, nor ever has, existed.

The inspiration for Winston's work, may have come from Russia. Where Stalin's right-hand man, Trotzky was erased from all tangible records after his dissention from the party. And the fear of telescreens harks back to the days when Stasi bugs were hooked to every bedpost, phone line and light bulb in Eastern Europe.

His reference to Hitler Youth, the Junior Spies, which trains children to keep an eye out for thought criminals -- even if they are their parents; provides evidence for Orwell's continuing presence in pop culture. "Where men can't walk, or freely talk, And sons turn their fathers in." is a line from U2's 1993 song titled "The Wanderer".

Orwell assumes that we will pick up on these political allusions. But the average grade 11 student will probably only have a vague understanding of these due to lack of knowledge. It is even less likely that they will pick up on the universality of these happenings, like the fact that people still "disappear" without a trace every day in Latin America.

Overall, however, the book could not have been better written. Orwell has created characters and events that are scarily realistic. Winston's narration brings the reader inside his head, and sympathetic with the cause of the would-be-rebels. There are no clear answers in the book, and it's often the reader who has to decide what to believe. But despite a slightly unresolved plot, the book serves its purpose. Orwell wrote this book to raise questions; and the sort of questions he raised have no easy answer. This aspect can make the novel somewhat of a disappointment for someone in search of a light read. But anyone prepared to not just read, but think about a novel, will get a lot out of 1984.

1984, is not a novel for the faint of heart, it is a gruesome, saddening portrait of humanity, with it's pitfalls garishly highlighted. Its historic importance has never been underestimated; and it's reemergence as a political warning for the 21st century makes it deserving of a second look. Winston's world of paranoia and inconsistent realities is an eloquently worded account of a future we thought we buried in our past; but in truth may be waiting just around the corner.

Plom de Nume "Rob" (Wolverhampton, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews

1984 is the most "contemporary" book around - read it now!, November 2, 1999

Having just re-read 1984 it struck me that, whilst the quality of the writing is "timeless," (Orwell constructs a better sentence than most "literary artists"), the book's themes get more and more frightening as Western culture decays toward the millennium. My first school reading was in the days when 1984 was literally "the future," (even though Orwell had always intended it as a satire on contemporary Britain, with "1948" the originally intended title); in England today the resonances are especially profound, and what looked "old-fashioned" to `sixties and `seventies sci-fi readers has gained a new and bleaker realism. We're beginning to catch up with the US when it comes to presidential-style "leadership" and "spin," whilst the rewriting of history - with its horrible parallels with the politically correct mythologies espoused in transatlantic universities and the like - is already being implemented, with particular regard to the guilty denial of the achievements of the British Empire, (whilst the Roman and Greek civilisations still manage to escape trendy censure).

The worst shock comes with the realisation that everything 1984 says about the manipulation and reduction of thought by language-control, (Doublethink and Newspeak, respectively), is demonstrably happening right now. Things you can't say become thoughts you can't think, and an attempted conversation with most contemporary English youths on the street will reveal how hard it has become for our ill-educated masses actually to formulate rationale thought: what you get is a monotonic patois recitation of received simplistic opinion - or a boot stamping on your face, followed by a law-suit for your assault on them! One recent encounter left me with the reflection that we are so far from Shakespeare one could weep; then I read 1984 again, where Orwell has Winston wake up one morning with the name on his lips, a fleeting memory of a better past. The book is brilliantly written, shockingly painful and horribly, horribly relevant! (It's also fantastically entertaining and often very funny). Read it, read it again, and read it to your children!

Barry C. Chow (Calgary, Alberta Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)

Consummately Wrong, October 10, 2004

Orwell wrote 1984 at a miserable juncture in history. The Second World War had just ended, the Europe of his memory was in ruins, the full horror of the holocaust had been laid bare and the victorious powers seemed bent on completing the destruction the planet. The best of optimists would have quailed, and Orwell was no optimist. Surrounded by this stark despairing landscape, he wrote a stark despairing speculation. It was his damning indictment of the dark places of our souls.

It has been called a masterpiece; one of the twentieth century's greatest prophecies; a visionary dystopia that will speak for all time.

I beg to differ.

I do not question the brilliance of Orwell's writing. It exactly conveys the utter dejection and despair that he felt in the aftermath of the war. It is an incredibly taut development of character, theme, setting, and plot that strikes our psyche like a fist to the stomach. It attains exactly the right balance between storytelling and polemic.

It is also all wrong. It felt wrong thirty years ago when I first read it. It feels just as wrong today.

If we ever manage to create hell, it won't be Orwellian. Humans are far more amenable to seduction than oppression. Why spy into every household when one can be persuaded to spy on oneself? Why use techniques as inefficient as torture when far more can be accomplished by appealing to our basest pleasures? Why need doublethink be forced when we will freely embrace it where it is invested with enough allure? And why would the denizens of a misbegotten future bother to listen to voices of discord when their every waking hour can be filled to excess with titillation, shallow ecstasy, and unending bombardment of the senses? The dystopia of the future will not be one of oppression, but of gluttony.

An observant person, looking at the here and now, might conclude that hell has already arrived. But it has arrived via Huxley, not Orwell. We already have the Brave New World of test tube babies, mass pacification, casual sex, and broadcasted voyeurism. The key to keeping a society docile is to make docility so pleasant, so seductive, that we will freely and willingly embrace it over the rigours of a well-examined life. The road to hell is paved with syrup, not vinegar.

Orwell was a brilliant thinker and writer, not just of fiction, but of social and personal commentary. His essays are probably the finest since Montaigne's, and his powers of human observation and his sheer intellect are overwhelming in their stature. This is what makes 1984 so difficult to understand. Such a keen mind should have arrived at very different conclusions from those exposited in this book.

In a really hellish future, there will be no need to destroy malcontents; they will simply be irrelevant.

Doug Vaughn - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)

Control language; control the world, December 8, 1999

So much has been written by others on this classic text that I will limit my comments to that aspect of the book I feel is still the most important - the manipulation of language to control behavior. Orwell understood how crucial meaning and communication is to social and political behavior. The Bolsheviks first and then the Nazis both went to great lengths to manipulate meaning, creating an acceptable vocabulary of politically positive words and images and an equally negative vocabulary for that which was to be vilified and destroyed. Attempting to channel behavior into patterns predefined by these limited modes of expression represents the greatest part of the state propogandist's art. Orwell reduced the complexity of this enterprise to something that could be seen for the con game it is. His invention of 'newspeak' demonstrates the reducto ad absurdum of such verbal restrictiveness.

In our day, whether Big Brother is really watching or not, we suffer from some of the same contraints of limited language and, in term, limited behavioral options. On the one hand we suffer from a language of polictical correctness that strives to offend no one, but makes speech clumsy and artificial. On the other extreme we suffer from the limited categories that the professional news media use - the narrow meanings available to them for understanding and communicating what is considered 'news'. Since politicians contribute to this limited vocabulary and play off of it, it saves them from facing much real in depth analysis and critique and limits the public to shallow expositions that distort reality and make meaningful political choice impossible.

So 1984 has come and gone and we haven't fallen into the dramatic pit that Orwell pictured, but the language we use to deal with social and political issues has been so attenuated that we are in danger of becoming slaves to a limited set of possibilities because we cannot even articulate any alternatives.

Stephen Pletko "Uncle Stevie" (London, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)

WAR IS PEACE; FREEDOM IS SLAVERY; IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH, September 16, 2005

This novel by George Orwell (whose real name was Eric Arthur Blair, 1903 to 1950) is about the effects of totalitarianism. Totalitarianism is a characteristic of a government or state in which one political party maintains complete control under a dictatorship and bans all others.

This story, which takes place in London in 1984, follows one man (named Winston Smith) and his love interest (Julia) as they struggle against this totalitarian party ("The Party") whose leader (actually dictator) is "Big Brother." The Party political orthodoxy rules the giant country of "Oceania" (in which London is located).

At the heart of this party's political orthodoxy is the process of controlling thought through the manipulation of language and information by the use of "Newspeak" which utilizes what is called "doublethink."

Newspeak is the official language of Oceania (but is not the only language spoken). It is a language that eliminates unnecessary words and is designed to diminish rather than help expressive thought. For example, Newspeak states that there is no good and bad but only good and "ungood." Doublethink is the ability to simultaneously hold two opposing ideas in one's mind and believe in them both. The three Party slogans that title this review are examples of doublethink. Another good example is that (2+ 2 =4) and (2 + 2 = 5).

The Party keeps everybody in line through Newspeak and doublethink. But they also have other methods. For example, they have the "Thought Police" that investigate "thoughtcrimes." These are "crimes" of just having negative thoughts about The Party. Another example are telescreens that watch your every move even in bathroom stalls. Thus, "Big Brother is watching you" at all times.

Winston and Julia are discovered to be guilty of thoughtcrimes by O'Brien (who is the personification of The Party). O'Brien also represents those leaders who use cruelty and torture as their primary method of control (like Hitler and Stalin did). He makes them pay for their "crimes."

This novel clearly shows how totalitarianism negatively affects the human spirit and how it's impossible to remain freethinking under such circumstances.

This novel also contains an appendix written by Orwell. Here he explains various aspects of Newspeak and to my surprise he states that by the year 2050, Newspeak will be the only language that anyone will understand. Why does he state this? He wanted to keep the fear of totalitarianism alive in his readers well past the year 1984. (Thus, this novel is still quite relevant for today!)

This novel is in a word fascinating! It is well written and is filled with symbolism and imagination. It begins slow but gradually picks up speed. And the story is very interesting.

Finally, after reading this book, I recommend watching the 1984 movie "1984" starring John Hurt and Richard Burton (his last movie role).

In conclusion, this novel is a masterpiece of political speculation that serves as a warning to us all. Read it for yourself to see why it brought Orwell world-wide fame!!

(first published 1949; 3 parts or 24 chapters; 325 pages)

Melkor "Lord of Darkness" (Angband) - See all my reviews

Among the Literary Greats for Reason, September 14, 2005

It seemed so innocuous, just sitting there wedged between two other books on the shelf, collecting dust with the others on my "yet to read" list. I may have passed it by altogether had it not been for the fact that I needed to complete my three hundred pages for the second quarter of my junior year. Besides, I'd read this author's work before and knew that I enjoyed his writing fairly well. So, without realizing what I was plunging into, I picked up George Orwell's 1984; the most unceremonious beginning for a most extraordinary event.

As I unconsciously flipped the pages, not realizing that I was still me and not Winston Smith, the story's protagonist, barely cognizant, in fact, that this was a book and not reality, I was dimly aware that this was something special; something far beyond what I had been expecting. If Animal Farm was a slightly humorous, if morbid, look at communism, then 1984 was a ghastly, apocalyptic vision of a demented future. After reading the first twenty pages, I determined that this was the single most quotable book of all time.

The infamous Party slogans:

Chilling words from what could have been, from an averted catastrophe in which the human race subjugates itself through ignorance. Yet who's to say this could never come to pass? None can honestly look another straight in the eye and say, "That is not the future." To presume so is vanity manifest.

The one enemy man need truly fear is himself. The notorious Big Brother, the faceless autocrat in charge of Orwell's nightmare world (incidentally, it is never established whether Big Brother is a single man or a surreptitious group superciliously dealing justice to the masses), mercilessly dominates life on Oceania, one of three nations in existence. These countries, Oceania, Eurasia, and Eastasia, are continually in a state of war with each other, in which Oceania and one of the others are allied against the last. Big Brother's control over his people is absolute, executed through a methodical censorship that keeps the façade of truth as a contorted mask. Big Brother has the power to efface any record of an event or person - to rewrite the past as he sees fit.

Perhaps less relevant as a prophecy today (1984 has come and gone and no dictatorship has arisen to consolidate the Americas and the United Kingdom into a single communist entity), 1984 remains a very real piece of culture, with its own voice in the way it challenges one's preconceived notions and ideals. My English teacher perhaps said it best, when comparing 1984 to Animal Farm: "Animal Farm hits you with gloves on; 1984 just smacks you bare-fisted." And it's no slap, no half-hearted jab; it is an in-your-face, force of a moving train blow to the jaw from which the reader reels for weeks, even months after. It is an illustration, as well, of the need of consolidation and the hopelessness that such a government can be beaten: Winston, after waging a personal crusade for his secret freedom, winds up a brainwashed pawn of Big Brother.

In the end, Orwell proves that, if the government so wills it, two and two really make five, not four, and no amount of protest is going to change that. This book was a life-changer for me in many ways, but mostly because it made me see a broader view of the world and made me appreciate life as I know it just that much more.

"He gazed up at that enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark mustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast. Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was alright, everything was alright, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother."

Quotes taken from George Orwell, 1984, copyright 1949 by Harcourt Brace Javonovich, Inc.

The "squirrelMaster" (BROUSSARD, LA United States) - See all my reviews

A masterpiece, misunderstood by many., July 1, 2004

A lot of readers seem to miss the point of this novel (especially the people who gave it 1 star, that's just weak). It's not about Orwell guessing what the world would be like in 1984 or really even a poke at communism.

Orwell presents an exaggerated and seemingly impossible not-so-distant future to the reader and supports it magnificently with parallelisms to religion and ideology. He addresses whether freedom of the mind is intrinsic to the human conscience and whether or not free thought is necessary for human happiness. It also questions what is real or true. Does 2+2=5? If you believe it and everyone else believes it, than why in the hell wouldn't it be so. The novel left me more afraid of the masses and the susceptibility of the human mind than the government. The people can take back control at the drop of a hat and they are the ones who allow it to get out of control in the first place.

Ahmed Ayad (Redmond, WA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)
A must read for all, October 26, 2005

This is the most depressing tale I have ever read. Though I know it to be fiction, I still can't take myself out of its ending. Although you KNOW for certain how the story will end, one could even imagine writing the plot exactly as it is only half way through the book, you could still not imagine the profoundness in which it was written and the mood it puts you in. It is also one of the most mentally exhausting reads. Taking you from logical absurdities to the haziness of dream worlds to metaphysical discussions.

Ok, so why am I giving it 5 stars despite all this?

Because in doing it the way it is, Orwell has succeeded in transferring to you his absolute HATRED of mental bondage, and of absolute unchecked human authority, and anything and everything that can lead to them. The rate at which the story is advanced towards the darkness and viciousness, the way he never for a moment leaves a prickle of hope in you heart or your mind about the final outcome of the protagonists or the world in which he lives, all reflect in no uncertain terms this hatred. Sometimes you think to yourself reading this "ok, I get it, why all this darkness"? Then, you realize what he was doing. He is shouting with the top of his lungs to all of us to NEVER EVER let things even approach the conditions of "Airstrip one".

What I have found most amazing in the novel towards the end is his resolution of a question that kept lingering in the protagonist's mind throughout the story; the "why?", why would the "Party" or the people in it do that? I have seen few reviewers allude to it. His answer was as simple and unexpected to me as it was to Winston - the protagonist, yet was perfectly inline with the extreme world Orwell built. There is no "why", there is no logic to explain it. Power is an end, not a means. In the words of the party members: "GOD is power". There is no reason for such attrocities but a sheer animalistic lust for power. Again, he is in a way saying: "don't ever try to rationalize it to yourself or others".

What sets "1984" apart from its famous sibling "Animal Farm", which by the way was also very depressing, is that it is not tailored to the history of the Communists. You could see, in a sense, the development of Orwell's thought while writing these two pieces. He started with the first to document one of the worst forms of collectivism that he witnessed, then - seeing at that time no sign of it being defeated or abated - took it to its extreme form. Such a form was sufficiently general to cover all types of mind slavery, to the extent that it can be applicable everywhere. I belive he might have even hinted at that in the part where he recounts the "history of the world" that he imagined from the his time to 1984. In this history, ALL of the globe, is ruled the same way albeit with different names and insignificant changes in ideology.

It is impossible to read 1984 without drawing parallels between contemporary events and something that is taking place in the novel. Indeed, one might never find a place where this kind of world exists. Yet, there is always something to draw parallels upon. Here, in the States, when you here the words "spin masters", you can't help but think of the principle of "doublethink"; in which one can not only muster the ability to consciously think of something and its opposite at the same time, yet somehow be able to believe both of them. You hear the word "alternate reality" in which people hear, read, and see the facts yet still are able to fit them into their worldview. A view in which internment is justified, the poor are robbing the rich, dissent is treason, torture is patriotism, failures are successes, and everything you think is true is a lie fabricated by the an enemy called "the main stream media". Then, you can't help but think of the "Ministry of truth" and the "Ministry of love".

Orwell is a champion of freedom at all levels, but most importantly in "1984", he is a champion of common sense.

"Freedom is the ability to say that two plus two equals four".

1984 is a must read for all.

A.J. (Maryland) - See all my reviews

A great year for the defense industry, June 18, 2001

George Orwell's "1984," published in 1949, projects a parallel world 35 years into the future in which all nations have been combined into three major superpowers in an eternal state of unrest. London still exists, but it is now a part of Oceania, governed by an entity called the Party, headed by a sovereign figure known only as Big Brother. The Party's one goal is power -- power over everybody and everything in Oceania. Surveillance is administered constantly; devices called telescreens are placed in people's homes to monitor thoughts and actions and broadcast Party propaganda continuously, with no way for the resident to turn his off or change the channel. Free thinkers are not tolerated, and roving bands of "Thought Police" are sent to sniff out transgressors. The Party is developing an official language called Newspeak, whose goal is to simplify language by eliminating as many extraneous words as possible and reducing vocabulary to a small number of basic words, thus narrowing the scope of thought.

But there's always a rebel. The protagonist is a man named Winston Smith who works at the Ministry of Truth as a sort of professional history revisionist. His job is to revise newspaper articles and documents in which Big Brother made predictions or statements that did not agree with the actual outcome of events; in other words, to maintain the public illusion that the Party is infallible and omniscient. Unhappy with his state of being, Winston would like to overthrow the Party but is powerless to do so. Teaming up with his love interest Julia, another Party worker, he colludes with a high-ranking Party official named O'Brien, who reveals himself as a secret member of a society called the Brotherhood who are planning to destroy the Party. O'Brien gives Winston a subversive book explaining the ideals and motivations of the Party: The upper classes (the highest Party members) need to retain their economic status, so it is important to control the minds and bodies of the lower classes, and wars are waged constantly only so that capital will be spent on the production of war machinery instead of being converted into wealth which could be distributed to the lower classes.

Winston knows that if he is caught as a dissident, he's dead. The Thought Police are everywhere, and can he trust Julia, O'Brien, and the friendly old shopkeeper Mr. Charrington to be who they say they really are? Predictably, he is apprehended, but the Party's plans involve not killing but reprogramming him, which unfortunately for poor Winston could be a fate worse than death.

"1984" is not strictly an anti-communist rant. (For that, see Arthur Koestler's "Darkness at Noon.") Rather, it attacks the complacency of all people and nations who would let a small number of idealists have their way and take command over the rest of the population. Semantics aside, Communism and Fascism, as practiced by certain Twentieth Century world powers, are essentially the same thing: the individual loses all his importance for the benefit of the nation, which really means the ruling Party. If democracy requires eternal vigilance, "1984" illustrates the consequences of apathy.

New Age of Barbarism "zosimos" (EVROPA.) - See all my reviews

Big Brother Is Watching You., September 23, 2007

_Nineteen Eighty Four_, first published in 1949 by George Orwell (pen name of Eric Blair), is a horrifying dystopian novel of a world in which the individual human being has been completely degraded and deprived of his fundamental humanity that reflects the totalitarianisms of the day, particularly communism and Stalinism. George Orwell (1903 - 1950) was the pen name of the British author Eric Blair, who developed an early enmity towards those in power and their abuses of power. Orwell was a socialist but came to witness the horrors of the Soviet state and the betrayal of his ideals by Stalinists. As such, Orwell came to loathe totalitarianism in general and wrote novels showing the degrading effects such societies had on people. Throughout this book, one can witness the underlying hatred of Orwell and those imprisoned by the system for the totalitarian state and bureaucracy which completely controls their lives and existences. This book in particular shows that rage in the main character of Winston Smith, a mere pawn in a totalitarian society. Orwell's books are indeed prophetic and show us a world in which the very life-force has been sapped out of mankind by those in power. Orwell imagines a highly efficient totalitarian state, capable of enforcing political correctness at the highest levels, tampering with the memories of men, and maintaining a total disregard for the truth. Orwell shows how under such regimes the very notion of truth becomes suspect and the individual can no longer distinguish between fact and state propaganda. This particularly applies to the Soviet Union under Josef Stalin, which is the primary setting for Orwell's stories.

However, Orwell's books are also applicable to the West of today, where the constant menace of totalitarian ideology exists.

1984 gives us a whole slew of new terminology to describe the situation as it exists in a totalitarian state in which political correctness is enforced. The book introduces such terms as thought police, thought crime (and thought criminal), doublethink, memory hole, Ingsoc, and Newspeak. Such terms reflect the complete disregard of the totalitarian state for the truth and the active promotion of propaganda within society. They have also largely entered into our culture as expressions to describe the enforcement of political correctness.

1984 focuses on the main character Winston Smith, a member of the Outer Party who lives in England and works for the Ministry of Truth. As it turns out, the Ministry of Truth ironically is responsible for spreading propaganda, and as all ministries mentioned by Orwell has a purpose exactly opposite to its stated purpose. The world of 1984 is a very bleak one indeed, run by a single party and its ruling leader "Big Brother", in which all individuals are subject to surveillance by the state should they commit a "thought crime". All expressions of individuality in 1984 have been wiped out and the human being is totally degraded living a pathetic existence of total subservience to the party. Sexuality has been suppressed as part of the "Anti-sex League" as well as religion. Truth itself is highly malleable and memory is constantly distorted, reflected in such ironical and oxymoronic sayings of the party as "War Is Peace", "Freedom Is Slavery", and "Ignorance Is Strength". Further, the nation of Oceania is constantly at war with either Eurasia or Eastasia, varying from day to day and reflected in the official propaganda of the state bureaucracy.

All party members revere their leader "Big Brother" (perhaps reminiscent of Josef Stalin or other totalitarian dictators) and despise the rebellious "Goldstein" (perhaps reminiscent of the Soviet hatred for Leon Trotsky). Further, the party exists in a caste system in which the "proles" (the proletariat) live underneath the party members (who are divided into the Inner and Outer Party). Winston Smith works for the Ministry of Truth but begins to keep a diary (which is strictly forbidden to party members) in which he reflects his hatred for "Big Brother". His work involves developing propaganda for the party. At work he meets up with Julia, who he initially believes is a strict orthodox member of the party. However, eventually he comes to realize that Julia is in love with him and they have a secret encounter in the countryside. Eventually Julia expresses to Winston her complete loathing for the party, though she publicly maintains a persona of utter obeisance and orthodoxy and belongs to the "Anti-sex League". Together they find a new hiding place in a shop in a part of the city where the "proles" live and attempt to re-discover the past of England. Throughout this period, however, the two live in constant fear of the thought police, should they catch onto their affair.

Eventually, Winston meets up with O'Brien at work, a man who he believes is a member of the Resistance, and is given a copy of Goldstein's book which explains the rise of the party and the need for perpetual war. Orwell quotes extensively from Goldstein's book which reflects much of the social thinking of the time, in particular the theory of managerial elites. However, Winston and Julia are captured by the party and it turns out that O'Brien is in fact a member of the party. While taken captive, both are tortured and made to recant their original beliefs about the party. In a particularly disgusting scene, Winston is taken to Room 101 where he must face his worst fear. There he ultimately betrays Julia (as she has already betrayed him) to save himself from being tortured by rats (the worst torture that he can imagine).

Eventually, Winston is completely re-educated and made to love "Big Brother" while his relationship with Julia is forever changed after their mutual betrayals of each other. Thus, ends in the most horrifying of manners Orwell's classic novel. Orwell concludes with an appendix on "The Principles of Newspeak" which effectively shows how even the language itself can be put to the purposes of propaganda within a totalitarian state.

1984 remains a classic dystopia reflecting the darker side of human existence within the Twentieth Century as it played out in the totalitarian dictatorships of the age. Throughout this novel, the very notion of truth remains problematic, as the party re-defines history to reflect its own agenda and thus even memory itself becomes distorted. Orwell shows the sheer degradation that the human being undergoes within such a surveillance society, to the eventual point where a man can be tortured by the powers that be to such an extent that he will eventually even renounce his love and embrace the figure he hates the most. While the novel is made to reflect Soviet society and Stalinism in particular, it also reflects the modern world in general, in which large-scale and efficient bureaucratic structures rob man of his humanity. Orwell's novels prove particularly prescient warnings to mankind to avoid the dangers of totalitarianism. As such, they should be read by all thinking individuals who seek to understand the horrors that can be inflicted upon the human being through totalistic societies.

A Customer

reality then v reality now, January 9, 2004

You've probably already read the other reviews on this site, so i'll just concentrate on my opinion on the relevance of this book in our contemporary society 1984 is a stark warning against totalitarianism. Written in 1948, Orwell's depiction of a government-controlled society seemed absurd when published, contrasting the innumerable amount of people that've said how real it seems now than it did then in western society

One interesting factor is the geography of the planet. We are told very little and all we're told is that there're three 'super-states', Oceania, Eastasia and Eurasia. Oceania is constantly at war with a vague and distant enemy, and is always switching between being allies and enemies with Eurasia and Eastasia. Comparing it to today, just what is this 'war on terrorism, and how threatened do you really feel about it (disregarding media opinion)?. America and Britian, both independantly throughout the years and in allegiance with each other recently, are constantly at war with an enemy. WWI, WWII, Cold war, Korean war, Vietnam war, Falklands War, Gulf war I and more recently Gulf war II. Societal opinions + perceptions are influenced by media, but who are we at war with? The "War on Terror" clearly highlights the fact that there is no tangible enemy anymore. Explained more clearly in Goldstein's passage in the book, we are constantly at war because it keeps us united, and stops us fighting one another, stops us fighting the government.

Another interesting factor in book is the issue of government surveillance. 'Telescreen' in homes, Cameras everywhere you walk, Microphones even in the countryside to detect rebellious behaviour. Although key issues stated in the book aren't as extreme, the power the government now has to keep tabs on people and spy on them has reached limits it has never reached before. The 'Party' explain that this surveillance is for the benefit of the people (note: animal farm) and they constantly reassure the citizens, or 'comrades', that life was worst off before they came along. Similarly, our governments are constantly re-assuring us how much better our lives are because of them. I.D cards are being proposed under the pretence that they will 'eliminate terrorism and benefit fraud', which are something the people are 'persuaded they want' because they media tells them they do.

The third, conclusively and i think most importantly, is the way this book challenges the fact we (society in 1948) take our freedom for granted. One passage in the book which sticks out in my mind specifically is when the main charactor walks through a lower-class area, and is terrified that the police patrols might stop him and ask him questions; 'what are you doing in this part of town? is this your usual way home'? etc. Similarly, if someone was walking down the street at 2am in a dangerous part of town for no particular reason, it would be deemed socially strange, thus encouraging this person not to do so, and do what everyone else does. If someone dresses in clothes that you do not usually see, he/she would be regarded as a weirdo, a social outcast".My point is, how free do we really think we are as a society these days? How easily are we opinionated by the media?

Our society is edging closer and closer to the reality that is 1984, and i recommend that you read it, it will change the way you perceive news articles, and you'll question all these erosions of civil liberties that have been happening.

By the way, Orwell didn't intend for this vision to be reality in the year 1984. He wrote it in 1948, so he just switched the last 2 letters around.

Valentin (Philadelphia) - See all my reviews

Remarkable, January 30, 2009

This excellent book is about life which was deprived of all meaning, whose primary goal was a constantly increasing productivity motivated by an ingeniously designed social system that advocated "love and peace."

I was born in the Soviet Republic of Ukraine. I recall the anxiety that tormented my family during the preceding months that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union. I was seven and lived in my own universe, but I was sort of aware that the Soviet Empire was seeing its last days. Karl Marx must have been doing somersaults in his grave.

I don't remember much about living under communism - except that daily life was "by the book" - but I've talked plenty about it to my parents and grandparents. When Stalin went six feet under, it became a bit more tolerable, but it remained totalitarianism nonetheless. Orwell did an exceptional job at depicting the essential aspects of that kind of state, more precisely Soviet regime.

The detail that he told is fascinating; as if Stalin or Beria had let him in on the juicy stuff. Some of it he exaggerated, some he understated, but fundamentally he was accurate. Also, it is imperative that the reader keeps in mind that it was published in 1949. A vast majority of people in Russia and Europe were isolated from this kind of knowledge - the government made sure of that through an intricate system of secret police - so this book was a revelation. Of course we now know that, aside from the fictitious names, he essentially portrayed reality. The indoctrination that is described in the book still lingered when I attended school in Ukraine in the `80s. Soviet propaganda machine was thorough indeed.

The history of totalitarian states is complex and enormous amount of time and literature has been dedicated to it. This book, however, is a good substitute if one cannot wrestle with a lengthy 700-page tome. It won't make you a political scholar, but it'll educate you on what Soviet Russia was. It's written in a lucid manner; however, one has to read it as nonfiction to truly appreciate the author's vision. George Orwell is a genius and his "1984" will be read for a long time.

Aleksander Coho (Athens Greece, from Albania) - See all my reviews
History of The Communist World, February 20, 2001

No amount of positive reviewing will do justice to the importance and beauty of this book - you have to read if for yourself. What I really want to review are the reviews of some reviewers from Wstern countries. They like the book, but their reviews are of the kind 'This is a book about a hypothetical totalitarian dictatorshp, ..., etc.' What is wrong, is the word 'hypothetical' This book could have been titled 'Bits of the History of the Communist World (albeit a little allegorical)'

I don't know what people born in the West understand in this book. Not much perhaps. The very fact that Orwell is the ONLY Westerner I know of to have written an accurate description (though a bit allegorical) of communism in practice, suggests that most Westerners couldn't understand what was happening in the communist world. I suggest that they read it for what it is: History cast into an allegorical novel.

Now an example or two. There was a famous picture in history textbooks in communist countries. Lenin in a podium holding a speech, his hand streched to the masses listening. On his left you could see Stalin. Everyone of my age has seen this picture. What most people haven't seen, though, is an older version of it: Lenin holding a speech, and on his left, Trotsky. (Winston's job right)

Now my country (Albania) was great friends with USSR, until 1961, that is. Albania broke up with USSR (considering USSR a traitor of real socialism), to advance real socialism together with China. Not for ever of course - in 1978 China became a traitor of real socialism, too, having in fact never been really socialist. There was a famous picture in Albanian history textbooks. The Albanian B.B. (Enver Hoxha) was denouncing the betrayal of real socialism by the Soviet leadership. I have seen all three versions of this painting: In the first one, Enver Hoxha had Chou EnLai on one side and Mehmet Shehu (Albanian Prime Minister) on the other. This was valid between 1961 and 1978. When China betrayed socialism in 1978, Chou Enlai disappeared from the painting, and someone else took his stead. This second version lasted until 1981. That's because in 1981 Mehmet Shehu became a traitor, and 'was suicided'. So he disappeared from the painting, too. This is the last version of it. By the way, the painting stood in the Albanian National Art Gallery. Many people must have seen all three versions of it in original.

I could wrie a book longer than 1984, describing how accurate 1984 is.

Read 1984 as a history of the communist world; it is valid even for the four decades after Orwell's death.

Aleksander Coho

"skaven264" (Rochester Hills, MI United States) - See all my reviews
Through a dark mirrior, George Orwell's world of 1984, December 7, 2003

There are many different types of books out there: fiction, non-fiction, science fiction, fantasy, horror, history, and biography. But only a few of them have the same impact that George Orwell achieves in his book 1984. It seems part paranoid fantasy, part tribute to the malleability of the human psyche, and part historical allegory.

The issues, even presented in the outdated means that they are, still ring true for our modern society. The line between patriotism and nationalism is a thin one, and one that Americans look at each day. But in Orwell's world that line was crossed, and the result was a totalitarian government beyond anything most of us can imagine. With the government controlling all jobs, information, deeds, and actions, even to the smallest thought of their peoples, his world is stark and horrible to those of us used to a freedom. But the steps into that world are not that far away from our modern media control. In his world of 1984 the media serves the purpose of brainwashing the populace at large, and an ongoing war keeps the pressure on. And while some may claim that the media in our own country has the same control over us, in his world, the media is the government, and has no other agenda than that which the government sets forth.

The strange part is that all of this occurs to us, through the eyes of the main character, Winston Smith, as he falls in love with a young woman named Julia. In Oceania, the nation-state in which Smith lives, love is not allowed, and not tolerated. Winston Smith is, in essence, an insurgent in his own nation. He sleeps each night knowing that something is wrong, but not being able to say exactly what. As a reader we can see exactly the horrors to which he is made to endure, and though they might make us scream and shout, he is unmoved. But love draws him out of that sheltered reality, and into open insurgency against his own nation.

This is the beginning of the end for Wilson, as the romance, and the pleasures, are short lived. Like a terrible wave the police of the world he inhabits come crashing down upon him to break his spirit. The way they torture him is gruesome, and should offend anyone who values our human rights. But in the end, Wilson himself comes to love "Big Brother" the face of the state of Oceania. He forgets his insurgency, through a conscious adaptation of his logic processes. He has to know that whatever the nation does is right, even when it contradicts what he has experienced in the recent past. In Orwell's words, Doublethink.
These are just the surface issues that come across in Orwell's vision world the deeper issues are buried. As in, how could such a world come to exist? Well, he explains that after World War 2, there came a mighty nuclear war that wiped out most of the population centers of the world. And that out of the nuclear ash arose a political methodology that swept the nations, a kind of socialism that blended into totalitarianism. This totalitarian regime took hold and great purges, on the scope of the great purges in the early communist USSR, ran across the world as we know it. 3 stable nations were born: Oceania (The Americas, the Pacific Islands, Australia, and England), Eastasia (China, Mongolia, The Indonesian Peninsula, and Japan), and Eurasia (All of Europe save England, and all of the Former USSR). The rest of the world was in a constant state of conquest by one of these 3 super-nations, with the captured populations used as slaves. The constant state of war between the nations served to keep control over the people within the nations.

This is a world devoid of hope. Indeed, devoid of any emotions except hatred, fanatical delight in the war effort, and the obedience to the governments of the nations. This is the worst vision of what the Nazis in Germany hoped to accomplish in their conquests. A world without any laws, but what the government states to be true at that moment. A world where people disappear, but no one notices, or even cares, a world of total devotion to the state as a whole, without regard to creed, race, or social status.

It isn't often that the characters in a book become common usage in the world at large, but the phrase "Big Brother is watching you" has become synonymous with the government watching over its citizens. It shows up today in almost everyday speech. Especially when people are talking right to privacy issues. This seems apt, as privacy is one of the things that Wilson Smith never had, and will never have. Big Brother (the government) watched his every move of his life, recorded his every word, and rifled through his belongings at their leisure. This book is the origin of that phrase.
Orwell gives us a black and white view of the virtues of that world, and its drawbacks. The astounding thing is that it isn't still more talked about. We have, most of us, read this book. But how many too the time to understand the social and political ramifications it speaks of? I will from now on, that is for sure.

Mike H "Livin in the Past" (Reno, NV USA) - See all my reviews
What More Can You Say: An Abiding Classic That Demands To Be Read, September 21, 2012

It's nearly impossible to reduce what George Orwell achieved with "1984", but here are some good examples: First, that of the nearly 1,800 reviews of this book, it's likely nobody managed to say anything really different than anyone else; yet Orwell managed to do it throughout an entire novel -- and he did it nearly 70 years ago.

Further, Orwell was incredibly prescient and insightful. Take his "telescreen" for instance, which closely mirrors our giant-screen TVs today and soon-to-be two-way viewing technology that we enjoy with our computers. The little helicopters buzzing around spying on everyone could just as easily be drones and satellites today.

And take the ever-changing alliances between the United States, Russia and China -- which could easily be called Eurasia, Eastasia and Oceania. There's always a war somewhere and when you turn on what passes for news today and it's all double-talk spin -- not so much concrete reality than it is flip-flop opinion. The world has yet to degenerate to thought control or "thoughtcrime", but the increasing constraints of political correctness has us edging that way.

And when it comes to our economic system, Orwell nailed that too -- "oligarchical collectivism," a system made by the few for the few. The Orwellian lexicon lives on: "Big Brother."

In the end, it boils down to the book itself. In short, it's a once-in-a-lifetime novel that begs to be read. An enduring classic. It's a book you can read time and again -- I know I have. One man resisting authority. The quest for freedom of thought and speech and liberty.

And I've said nothing no one else hasn't said already. You may as well quit reading what people have to say about this great classic and find out for yourself.

P. L. SORUM "Ricia" (FL) - See all my reviews
I attended parochial school as a teen and this book was a huge "no-no." I read it anyway and understood why those who seek control over others are very uncomfortable with this book. Personally, I think it should be required reading as it helps to define manipulative behaviors. It's a great book about a lousy world where thought is actively curtailed and the powers that be are only satisfied when the soul is utterly destroyed.
Carolyn Blades (Dexter, MI) - See all my reviews
Our world today and to come, January 29, 2009

Once science fiction, now daily reality: constant war, newspeak, doublethink, surveillance by hidden cameras (and now satellites), TV sets humming 24/7 in many homes, political cover-ups, repression, restriction of language and the concomitant impoverishment of thought, manipulation on many levels. If you only read this in high school, read it again.

Tikhonov Alexei "nabludatel" (Suwon, South Korea) - See all my reviews

1984 by Orwell, January 3, 2007

As a person who lived at socialism and now at capitalism in Russia and outside Russia I can say... '1984' is still actual, regardless of a political system. UNFORTUNATELY.

A lot of mind controlling methods, may be not as cruel as in '1984' described, but still same unhuman, are applied all over the world.... I strongly recommend to read this book to younger generation and don't think that it is about gone away Stalin's Russia... IT IS ABOUT OUR TODAY...In Russia and elsewhere. It is not too easy to read it, but when you MUST THINK it is always not easy....

James E. Egolf (Florida) - See all my reviews

A Description of the West from 1948 to the Present, March 27, 2006

George Orwell (1903-1950) wrote 1984 in the late 1940s,and the novel was published in 1949. This book was a description of a negative utopia,and served as a warning to the West of not only future events but events that had already occured in Western Europe and the United States. In fact, the original title of 1984 was 1948, but Orwell's publishers thought a futuristic title would increase sales of the book. There are three basic warnings in this book.

The shifting of political alliances in 1984 has an all to familiar ring. Note that during the first had of the decade of the 1940s that the Soviets, Chinese, etc. were gallant allies. On the other had, the Japanese, Germans, and the Italians were the forces of evil beyond redemption. Yet, by 1948, or 1946, the scene dramatically changes. All of a sudden, the Soviets were the evil "Gremlins in the Kremlin." The Chinese suddenly became wicked. The previously defined wicked Germans, Japanese, and Italians were now suddently "good guys." One should also that those who clearly wrote about this in any honest context were badly smeared or condemned for being honest.

Another part of 1984 which should be closely examined is the corruption of language. The politically approved words such as democracy, world peace, etc., are part of the media's cowardly effort to avoid truth. Political hacks use these approval words in a flimsy attempt to pose as experts assigned to explain the changes of "allies" and power shifts. Orwell was always aware of the corruption of language and, in turn, the corruption of thought. The examples Orwell uses in 1984 should attract the attention of thoughtful men.

Orwell was one of the few who saw the connection between war and economics. He was one of the first who saw war production as an economic engine to maintain something close to full employment. He lived through the Great Depression and realized that wars are started not so much to defeat the enemy as to maintain political unity and full employment on "the home front." If a "war" can be prolonged, the better attempt to maintain war production and full employment. While living standards were not good, workers have the illusion that they are reasonable well off and are busy with important work.

Orwell's 1984 should be required reading for any teenager. The political lessons derived from this book are important, and, as some have mentioned, one can learn good prose. Reading 1984 can help explain the shifting of alliances since the start of the Cold War and can help explain phony international tensions from the end of W.W. II to the present. One should reflect how many "enemies" and allies the Americans have had during this time as well as reflect on how enemies quickly become allies and vice versa. This reviewer would not recommend 1984 to anyone who is immune to reason.

john b (Concord, NC) - See all my reviews

2+2=5, December 30, 2005

Too often people summarily dismiss anything with the word 'classic' on the outside of it as something that is either too deep to understand or too tame to be interesting. 1984 defies the second mold and blows away the first, roaring off its pages as an untamable black-hearted novel about society.

That's where the ability to define the novel stops. Undoubtedly, when the reader finishes 1984, the last four words are going to draw a line for them; that line will be the one that demarcates whether the reader is a socialist (that the power of production in society lies in the hands of the state) or a capitalist (that the power of production in society should lie in individuals). The brief bio at the beginning of the novel states that Orwell himself was a socialist...this is a strange thing to have to hear because you get the feeling that the novel is not pulling for that side, nor the other.

Because that is the strange greatness that is this novel -- it pulls for nothing, gives no easy answers, and least of all holds back on the literary punch that it delivers. Some novels put forth a question then attempt to answer it (Dostoevsky's 'The Idiot' is one such attempt) and they are great for their own pattern. 1984 is of the other milieu, giving us only a large, unanswered question which is bound to divide us as much as it helps us to see the problems which we all face.

I've not talked much about the plot of the book, nor the characters to this point. To this I must simply say: why should I? The plot and characters, the whole course of the book...they are all contained in what I've already said. This is not a book, it is a problem, a deep philosophical/sociological one which cannot be pinned down. The novel uses its characters and their situations to stake out the nature of its presentation, and then leaves the reader to wade through it on their own once it is finished. It is a disturbance in the mind, one that is significant more so today than ever before- What is the nature of government and its intrusion into life (the NSA situation)? What controls should be placed on the individual (abortion, censorship, euthanasia)? What form should punishment take (torture in the US run detention camps)?

By the time you finish the book, you're going to be thinking about these questions and several more. Hopefully you will want to find answers, though doing so is no easy task; these are intentionally hard questions, aimed at all strata of society, ones that will stick with you the older you get, facing you every time you look at your pay stub and think about where your effort goes.

And again, the cultural significance of this novel cannot be understated. It has already pervaded our daily lives in such a way that we might take for granted; from the lyrics in songs (who controls the past now, controls the future), to the shows on television (Big Brother), one cannot help but to see 1984 all around us, so ingrained into our lives that we might overlook the impact it has made.

Bottom line: this is required reading in many schools for a reason. Every person should be made to read this book.

-LP

Chris (Washington state, USA) - See all my reviews

A fine piece of work, August 5, 2004

Oceania, with the British Isles, the America's and other lands, and London as its capital is a totalitarian state. Winston Smith works on changing past newspapers and other documents to make them doctrinally consistent with the short term needs of the party running Oceania, INGSOC. Thus documents are changed to make it seem that Oceania has always been at war with one of the two other nations of the world, Eurasia and in an alliance with EastAsia, the other nation; similarly is the construction when Oceania goes to war with EastaAsia. Similarly documents will be changed that have some INGSOC official uttering an inaccurate prediction about economic performance so that the official will have originally made an accurate prediction.. Documents are changed to eliminate mention of former favored party members after they fall out of favor and are sent to a forced labor camp or are "vaporized." Winston and other bureaucrats throw doctrinally inaccurate documents into the "memory hole", a chute, attached to his cubicle where they are sent down to the inner recesses of the government building to be burned.

Party members have in their homes and offices "telescreens" where they receive propaganda, are led in mandatory morning exercises but through which are also watched by officials for suspicious facial expressions, or any activity that might indicate independence of mind or feelings of love, enthusiasm or any other human emotion that are not directed at Big Brother, the possibly non-existent ruler of Oceania. People who exhibit such tendencies towards "thought crimes" are immediately arrested, executed or released back into society brainwashed and then rearrested and shot or sometimes sent to a forced labor camp.

INGSOC indoctrination ensures that its party members will not be able to not think logically and instead be completely subordinated to their emotions, which are completely engrossed in worshipping Big Brother. "Doublethink" is what is called the ability of the INGSOC party member to somewhat recognize the logical fallacies and outright falsehoods the party propagates as truth. At the same time such fallacies and falsehoods are accepted as the truth because one's emotions are trained to accept the party's pronouncements as truth whatever common sense says. Thus, it is easy to accept that two plus two equals five when logic says two plus two equals four. Or to not see anything wrong in the Ministry of Torture being officially called "The Ministry of Love," The ministry of truth management/propaganda, etc, where Winston works, as "The Ministry of Truth, and so on. Or to have the party denounce the original ideals of socialism while declaring itself to be a repository of socialist purity. Logic seems to be only tolerated when examining the crimes of official enemies of Oceania.

The bigger one's vocabulary is, of course, the more one can utilize it to articulate opposition to the party; so INGSOC wants to keep Newspeak-the language it is developing--and the remaining use of "Oldspeak"-old standard English-- as small as possible. In Newspeak there is no bad to good. Instead bad is called "ungood," "very good" in oldspeak is called "doubleplusgood." INGSOC indoctrination and throwing old documents and dictionaries down the "memory hole" has made "freedom" have no political connotations but only is defined as in the sentence "She was now free from the illness." Most documents before 1960 are sent down the memory hole or like the Declaration of Independence, altered to express doctrines of INGSOC.

Orwell is not just talking about Stalinism in this book. He sort of touches on elements of our own society. The bottom eighty five percent of Oceanic society, the non-party members are called "Proles", for Proletarian. The Proles are far less constrained by party discipline than INGSOC members produces for them and encourages them to consume dumb popular songs, pornography, trashy novels, play lotteries.. They are encouraged to jingoist frenzies where they attack foreigners and watch parades where they can jeer at foreign POW's and so on. All this distracts them from organizing to seize economic and political justice for themselves. They are still economically enslaved as they were under capitalism.

The sort of Trotsky of the story, Goldstein, notes that Oceania's rulers want to keep throwing resources into war-making so as not to have to divert them to making an equitable standard of living for the masses. \

Erich Fromm notes in his 1961 Afterward notes a few examples of how we in the U.S. practice "doublethink." He gives the example of the person who works for Corporation A and defends its products and everything about it as perfect regardless of what one's common sense might say. However the person will attack his employer's rival corporation B, trying logically to look for flaws in the latter's products and so on. Then the person might switch to employment in corporation B., thus switching loyalty to the latter, and attack the flaws of Corporation A., its former employer. Fromm also notes how American propagandists described U.S. allies as part of the Free World even though it contained viscous Latin American military dictatorships, apartheid South Africa, Salazar's Portugal, Franco's Spain, and so on.

As a piece of literature, this book is excellent. The structure, the parts of the story, are well put together and flow together well. Winston's struggle to maintain his intelligence and impendence is very realistic and well told. I liked the views of life among the Proles as seen by Winston. How Winston and Julia make contact and their first meeting where they end up fornicating are all a little unreal.. But despite this the Winston-Julia love story is very charming, full of real feeling. Winston's experiences in the last part of the book are described vividly, if being slightly incredible.

1984 (Signet Classics) George Orwell

Amazon.com Books
Julie on March 3, 1998
The History Lesson You Wish you Had

George Orwell's final novel, 1984, was written amidst the anti-communist hysteria of the cold war. But unlike Orwell's other famous political satire, Animal Farm, this novel is filled with bleak cynicism and grim pessimism about the human race. When it was written, 1984 stood as a warning against the dangerous probabilities of communism. And now today, after communism has crumbled with the Berlin Wall; 1984 has come back to tell us a tale of mass media, data mining, and their harrowing consequences.

It's 1984 in London, a city in the new überstate of Oceania, which contains what was once England, Western Europe and North America. Our hero, Winston Smith works in the Ministry of Truth altering documents that contradict current government statements and opinions. Winston begins to remember the past that he has worked so hard to destroy, and turns against The Party. Even Winston's quiet, practically undetectable form of anarchism is dangerous in a world filled with thought police and the omnipresent two-way telescreen. He fears his inevitable capture and punishment, but feels no compulsion to change his ways.

Winston's dismal observations about human nature are accompanied by the hope that good will triumph over evil; a hope that Orwell does not appear to share. The people of Oceania are in the process of stripping down the English language to its bones. Creating Newspeak, which Orwell uses only for examples and ideas which exist only in the novel. The integration of Newspeak into the conversation of the book. One of the new words created is doublethink, the act of believing that two conflicting realities exist. Such as when Winston sees a photograph of a non-person, but must reason that that person does not, nor ever has, existed.

The inspiration for Winston's work, may have come from Russia. Where Stalin's right-hand man, Trotzky was erased from all tangible records after his dissention from the party. And the fear of telescreens harks back to the days when Stasi bugs were hooked to every bedpost, phone line and light bulb in Eastern Europe.

His reference to Hitler Youth, the Junior Spies, which trains children to keep an eye out for thought criminals- even if they are their parents; provides evidence for Orwell's continuing presence in pop culture. "Where men can't walk, or freely talk, And sons turn their fathers in." is a line from U2's 1993 song titled "The Wanderer".

Orwell assumes that we will pick up on these political allusions. But the average grade 11 student will probably only have a vague understanding of these due to lack of knowledge. It is even less likely that they will pick up on the universality of these happenings, like the fact that people still "disappear" without a trace every day in Latin America.

Overall, however, the book could not have been better written. Orwell has created characters and events that are scarily realistic. Winston's narration brings the reader inside his head, and sympathetic with the cause of the would-be-rebels. There are no clear answers in the book, and it's often the reader who has to decide what to believe. But despite a slightly unresolved plot, the book serves its purpose. Orwell wrote this book to raise questions; and the sort of questions he raised have no easy answer. This aspect can make the novel somewhat of a disappointment for someone in search of a light read. But anyone prepared to not just read, but think about a novel, will get a lot out of 1984.

1984, is not a novel for the faint of heart, it is a gruesome, saddening portrait of humanity, with it's pitfalls garishly highlighted. Its historic importance has never been underestimated; and it's reemergence as a political warning for the 21st century makes it deserving of a second look. Winston's world of paranoia and inconsistent realities is an eloquently worded account of a future we thought we buried in our past; but in truth may be waiting just around the corner.

Geekier than thou TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 25, 2000

Big Brother is watching you - read this book and see how!

George Orwell's classic was incredibly visionary. It is hardly fathomable that this book was written in 1948. Things that we take for granted today - cameras everywhere we go, phones being tapped, bodies being scanned for weapons remotely - all of these things were described in graphic detail in Orwell's book.

Now that we have the Internet and people spying on other people w/ webcams and people purposely setting up their own webcams to let others "anonymously" watch them, you can see how this culture can develop into the Orwellian future described in "1984."

If you've heard such phrases as "Big Brother," "Newspeak," and "thought crime" and wondered where these phrases came from, they came from this incredible, vivid and disturbing book.

Winston Smith, the main character of the book is a vibrant, thinking man hiding within the plain mindless behavior he has to go through each day to not be considered a thought criminal. Everything is politically correct, children defy their parents (and are encouraged by the government to do so) and everyone pays constant allegiance to "Big Brother" - the government that watches everyone and knows what everyone is doing at all times - watching you shower, watching you having sex, watching you eat, watching you go to the bathroom and ultimately watching you die.

This is a must-read for everyone.


Top Visited
Switchboard
Latest
Past week
Past month

NEWS CONTENTS

Old News ;-)

[Jul 09, 2021] New government program helps you snitch on your family members

Jul 09, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

By Simon Black via Sovereign Man

Elizabeth Packard disagreed with her husband on religion.

While this might not seem like a big deal today, when you were a woman married to a preacher in the mid-1800s, it was a HUGE deal.

me title=

https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.470.1_en.html#goog_47688554

me scrolling=

Elizabeth became increasing bold in stating her religious opinions openly -- as well as her anti-slavery views and support for abolitionist John Brown.

So in 1860 her husband exercised his legal right to have her committed to an insane asylum.

Elizabeth spent three years in the asylum before being deemed incurable. She was released back to the custody of her husband, who locked her in a room and nailed the windows shut.

But with the help of a friend, Elizabeth managed to take her husband to court over the confinement. A jury took only seven minutes to decide that she was healthy, sane, and deserved her freedom.

Sadly, her case was not unique.

The records from one mental asylum from the era still survive, and they show vast amounts of cases in which women were diagnosed as insane because they did not accept the prevailing views of society, or of their husbands.

A common diagnosis was to rule a woman "insane by religious fantasy." In other words, she did not believe in the exact same religious principles as her neighbors and family members.

Behaving and thinking independently was more than enough to deem a woman crazy and totally ruin her life.

And everyone in her social circle -- friends, neighbors, family members, and even her own husband -- was able to rat them out to the authorities for their dangerous, aberrant behavior.

You'd think this sort of custom would have gone out of style long ago.

But thanks to a new program being developed by the White House, you too can soon report your 'insane' friends and family members who don't express approved social views.

Recently a senior White House official announced a "National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism".

And this new strategy includes programs for people to "seek help" from the government on behalf of anyone they "perceive to be radicalizing".

Their objective here is to prevent violence and domestic terrorism. That sounds noble enough.

But even basic truths about violence are completely tainted by ideology and politics.

Angry, menacing rioters rampaging through the streets, torching cars, looting stores, and destroying property? They're "mostly peaceful", hence this White House program doesn't apply to them.

But the man who grabs a weapon to defend his family against those angry, menacing rioters? He's a violent radical who should be reported.

Then there's Dr. Aruna Khilanani, who earlier this month lectured at Yale University about her fantasies of killing white people.

Again, though, she's neither considered radical nor potentially violent so she doesn't fit into this new White House program.

Saying, however, that "a man cannot get pregnant," which was enough for Twitter to ban a Spanish politician recently, is absolutely considered radical.

The rules are terribly confusing. Fortunately the US government will be bringing in the Big Tech companies to monitor our behavior and keep us all in check.

It's also notable that the federal government is spending boatloads of taxpayer dollars teaching US government employees about Critical Race Theory, which asserts that everyone is racist and that you are either a victim or an oppressor based on your skin color.

I say this is notable because they don't spend those same taxpayer dollars on the principles taught by Martin Luther King, i.e. that we should strive for a society where people are judged by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin.

But MLK's view is now considered outdated by the woke progressives in charge.

And they even have 'science' to back up their assertions.

For example, the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association published an article last month explaining that whiteness is "a malignant, parasitic-like condition".

And as we've all been told, you gotta trust the science!

This is rapidly becoming the accepted social view, and any departure from this thesis is considered 'radical'.

It's ironic that most of the bureaucrats and politicians mandating this training don't have the first clue what they're talking about.

Recently General Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress that teaching Critical Race Theory and "white rage" to military cadets at West Point (my alma mater) was important.

Yet he simultaneously acknowledged that he doesn't know the first thing about Critical Race Theory, referring to it as "whatever the theory is. . ."

And that pretty much sums up institutional leadership these days in the Land of the Free.

Politicians in government, business executives, and now even military generals, are only concerned about appearances, not substance.

They know nothing about Critical Race Theory. They just want to give the appearance that they're doing something especially when everyone else is doing the same thing.

Just about every big company and organization, from Coca Cola to Disney to Major League Baseball to the Central Intelligence Agency, has jumped on board the Woke train and embraced these idiotic principles.

Hardly a single so-called 'leader' has stood up to say 'I agree there are problems to solve, but this approach is totally absurd and I'm not going along with it.'

These executives have too much to lose -- power, prestige, paychecks so they fall in line and do what everyone else is doing.

Standing apart from the crowd, risking your reputation, and raising a voice of dissent takes courage -- something that is sorely lacking in political and corporate leadership.

This weak, pitiful leadership is the reason why the entire woke movement has snowballed out of control: no one with any real power is willing to stand against it anymore.

It's also the reason why looting Nike stores and rioting in the streets is seen as 'mostly peaceful'.

Yet anyone with conservative views is considered "radical", worthy of being committed to modern-day digital insane asylum (i.e. censored by the Big Tech platforms).

Frankly, if history is any guide, this trend is most likely going to become much worse. But one day it will subside.

It may take years. But the woke Twitter mob will eventually run out of people to hate and start feeding on its own fanatics. It's like the Soviet Union: sooner or later the entire idiotic ideology will collapse on itself.

y_arrow 1
Greed is King 18 hours ago

The Hitler Youth were encouraged to "snitch", and they did, on their parents, their teachers, everybody. The NAZI Concentration Camps killed Aryans as well as ****.

Welcome to the Elite`s brave new world.

_Conax_ 15 hours ago

Insane, huh.

The soviet communist party used their mental hospitals to silence and punish their critics. I never trusted shrinks because their profession is based on the hack theories of bearded hare brains. Everyone either hates their father or want to boink their moms according to those quacks.

The treatment involves zombie pills.

Are our leftists so weak they can't face the free thinking in the war of ideas?

Umh 18 hours ago

It could have been worse.

https://allthatsinteresting.com/rosemary-kennedy-lobotomy

steve2241 15 hours ago

Absolutely horrifying. And that was in the 20th century, not the 15th!

indus creed 14 hours ago (Edited)

One NY judge tried to commit Dinesh D'Souza to a mental hospital during his campaign finance hearing. They are gonna declare all old school thinking as insane.

jakevee 18 hours ago

Sounds like North Korea.

Dr Phuckit 12 hours ago

Snitching was a major part of 1984, you got rewarded with a few bread crumbs.

Baby steps until one day you realize ....

Obamanism666 7 hours ago

Bring me the person, we will find a crime

JustSayNo 5 hours ago (Edited)

Sometime this weekend, I'm going to have to find the time to post a little write up I'd found on the persecution of the Ulster Scots in Northern Ireland in the late 1600's- early 1700's. This included crucifixion of their Presbyterian ministers, tossing their babies alive into pots of boiling water, hunting the men down and murdering as in the style of an English fox hunt. This occurred at the hands of the English, and though just one example of the atrocities spurred by the English aristocracy and bankers of the times, the fate of the Ulster Scots was probably the worst of it. The Ulster Scots migrated to the US in droves at the time. They tended to push out into the American wilderness, getting as far away from the systems of English rule and governance in the American cities as possible. Justifiably, they hated the English. It seems, that the English aristocracy and bankers are still after the descendants of the Ulster Scots today- labeling them "domestic terrorists", blaming them for slavery (which was really to the profit of the English banking system and investors in trade of the times, and was not of benefit to the average American ). To the Ulster Scots and others who had suffered in Europe, and some other parts of the world, at the hands of the English, slavery probably seemed rather tame, and pushing out to the wilderness and frontiers the way that the Scots did, slavery of Africans was likely not much a part of their universe . What the Ulster Scots cared about, was freedom from the rule and governance of the despicable English aristocracy. And with good reason. They also tended not to talk about what had happened to them, as our Irish-American ancestors tended not to talk about what had really happened at the hands of the English. Its time to start talking about the Ulster Scots. Much of the our ideas about freedom, about our relationship to government, property. about the second amendment and the importance an ability of the people to protect itself from government, come from the Scots. We need a reminder as to why the Scots felt this way, based on experiences. Their experience of exactly what government will do to a people when that people is unable to defend itself, and that government is controlled by Khazarian and other bankers.

ebear 8 hours ago

"It's like the Soviet Union: sooner or later the entire idiotic ideology will collapse on itself."

Ozarkian 2 hours ago

The media narratives no longer work. The movers and shakers are losing control and it should scare the hell out of them. They might actually have to work for a living.

Aireannpure 14 hours ago

Do not comment on social dogma, rhetoric and platitudes dudes.

[Jul 03, 2021] Neoliberal game with "Oppressive Language" is a pure Orwellian linguistic madness

You need to drink a lot of "woke coke" and wearing exclusively "woke Nike" to digest those recommendations without laughing.
History repeats, first as tragedy, second as farce. White Guard rebels during Russian civil War called Bolsheviks "Tovatitcshi"(Comrades) as they prohibited to say Sir to the officers.
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less." "The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."
Jul 03, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

As George Orwell has taught us, language manipulation is at the frontline (yes, I have just broken one of the cardinal rules of his " Politics and the English Language ," but not his final injunction to "break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous") of politicised mind-bending. The sort of language we are permitted to use circumscribes the thinking that we shall be allowed to engage in. The assault on language is, therefore, an integral component of the unrelenting warfare being waged for the conquest and control of the mind. Word elimination and reassignment of meaning, as Orwell also presciently noted, are essential elements of the campaign to reformat the mind and eventually to subjugate it.

A breath-taking example of how this process works was recently unveiled by the thoroughly brain-washed students of the once prestigious Brandeis University who, this time without prompting from their faculty elders and betters, voted to ban from their campus such odious words and phrases as "picnic" and "you guys," for being "oppressive". "Picnic" is prohibited because it allegedly evokes the lynching of Blacks.

The precocious young intellectuals took pains to produce an entire list of objectionable words and phrases, shocking award-winning novelist Joyce Carol Oates who tweeted in bewilderment: "What sort of punishment is doled out for a faculty member who utters the word 'picnic' at Brandeis? Or the phrase [also proscribed – S.K.] 'trigger warning'? Loss of tenure, public flogging, self-flagellation?"

Oppressive Language Possible Alternatives Explanation
Killing it Great job! If someone is doing well, we
don't need to equate that to
Awesome! murder!
Take a shot at Give it a go These expressions needlessly use
imagery of hurting someone or
Take a stab at Try something.
Trigger warning Content note The word "trigger" has
connections to guns for many
Drop-in people; we can give the same
head's up using language less
connected to violence.
Rule of thumb General rule This expression comes from an
old British law allowing men to
beat their wives with sticks no
wider than their thumb.
Pknk Outdoor eating Tlie term picnic is often
associated with lynchings of
Black people in the United
States, during which white
spectators were said to have
watched while eating, referring
to them as picnics or other terms
involving racial slurs against
Black people.
Go off tlte reservation Disagree with tlie group, defect This phrase has a harmful
from the group history rooted in the violent
removal of indigenous people
from their land and the Itorrible
consequences for someone that
left the reservation.
_arrow
Not Your Father's ZH 8 hours ago (Edited)

"Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. " ― George Orwell

Not Your Father's ZH 8 hours ago (Edited)

Like Water for Coca-Cola by Theodore Dalrymple . . . Google, the 21st Century Oracle at Delphi.

I Consume, Ergo Sum.

"Each new generation born is in effect an invasion of civilization by little barbarians, who must be civilized before it is too late." ― Thomas Sowell, A Conflict of Visions: Ideological Origins of Political Struggles

Read more quotes from Thomas Sowell Happy 91st Birthday to Thomas Sowell

Lordflin 10 hours ago

The constant reconstruction of language is a highly effective tool when employed against weak minds... as most folks have only a loose association with the words in their heads...

As meanings of words are changed the ideas associated with those words change... consequently a society can be transformed into a different society without ever answering a single argument...

Not Your Father's ZH 8 hours ago (Edited)

"I suspected I was just part of a racket at the time . . . My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of higher-ups." ~ War Is A Racket, by Major General Smedley Butler, 1935

A_Huxley 7 hours ago

Maoism.

zorrosgato 10 hours ago

picnic (n.)

1748 (in Chesterfield's "Letters"), but the thing itself apparently was rare before c. 1800 as an English institution [OED]; it originally meant "a fashionable social affair (not necessarily out of doors) in which every partaker contributed something to the general table;" from French piquenique (1690s), perhaps a reduplication of piquer "to pick, peck," from Old French (see pike (n.1)), or the second element may be nique "worthless thing," from a Germanic source.

As in many other riming names, the elements are used without precision, but the lit. sense is appar. 'a picking or nibbling of bits,' a snatch, snack .... [Century Dictionary]

The word also turns up 18c. in German, Danish, Swedish. Later "pleasure party the members of which carry provisions with them on an excursion, as to some place in the country." Figurative sense of "something easy" is from 1886. Picnic basket is by 1857. Picnic table is by 1858, originally a folding table used for outdoor dining.

https://www.etymonline.com/word/picnic

MoonWatcher 5 hours ago

Meanwhile the top Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Indian etc. schools concentrating on STEM are laughing their asses off.

John Grady 6 hours ago

Activism is now a career path so to differentiate yourself as an activist you have to have an angle so you look busy. Endless bickering about minutia makes it look like they're doing something.

amerikan 6 hours ago

"Mission Creep" for creeps

[Jul 03, 2021] The Descent Into (Utter) Orwellian Madness

Jul 03, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Stephen Karganovic via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

Little wonder that here and there sanity nostalgia is gripping the Western world, at least those isolated portions of it that are not internalising the sinister "new normal." But it is seemingly to no avail. All commanding positions are firmly in the hands of lunatics, who are determined to turn a once great and exemplary civilisation into an asylum.

As George Orwell has taught us, language manipulation is at the frontline (yes, I have just broken one of the cardinal rules of his " Politics and the English Language ," but not his final injunction to "break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous") of politicised mind-bending. The sort of language we are permitted to use circumscribes the thinking that we shall be allowed to engage in. The assault on language is, therefore, an integral component of the unrelenting warfare being waged for the conquest and control of the mind. Word elimination and reassignment of meaning, as Orwell also presciently noted, are essential elements of the campaign to reformat the mind and eventually to subjugate it.

A breath-taking example of how this process works was recently unveiled by the thoroughly brain-washed students of the once prestigious Brandeis University who, this time without prompting from their faculty elders and betters, voted to ban from their campus such odious words and phrases as "picnic" and "you guys," for being "oppressive". "Picnic" is prohibited because it allegedly evokes the lynching of Blacks.

The precocious young intellectuals took pains to produce an entire list of objectionable words and phrases, shocking award-winning novelist Joyce Carol Oates who tweeted in bewilderment: "What sort of punishment is doled out for a faculty member who utters the word 'picnic' at Brandeis? Or the phrase [also proscribed – S.K.] 'trigger warning'? Loss of tenure, public flogging, self-flagellation?"

All three punishments will probably be applied to reactionary professors who go afoul of the list's rigorous linguistic requirements.

Not to be outdone by the progressive kids on the East Coast, avant-garde California legislators have passed a law to remove the pronoun "he" from state legal texts. The momentous reform was initiated by California's new attorney general, Rebecca Bauer-Kahan, who after looking up the job requirements made the shocking discovery that the law assumed that the attorney general would be a man.

Upon review, it turned out that the state code and other legal documents were enabling unacceptable concepts by using pronouns "he," "him" and "his" when referring to the attorney general and other state-wide elected officials. Appalled, Ms. Bauer-Kahan denounced these linguistic lapses for not representing "where California is and where California is going." She inarguably was right on that score at least, which has perhaps also something to do with the massive exodus of California residents to less complicated parts of the country.

When lawmakers of a state which is rapidly turning into a North American Calcutta have no concerns more pressing than to revise the use of pronouns in official documents, that sends a clear message where that state is going, exactly as the smart and thoroughly up-to-date woman said.

But as a Pakistani immigrant father in Seattle, state of Washington, discovered to his chagrin, the linguistic clowning can have very serious personal and political consequences. After checking in his 16-year-old autistic son for treatment in what he thought was a medical facility, Ahmed was shocked to receive a telephone call where a social worker explained to him that the child he had originally entrusted to the medical authorities as a son was actually transgender and must henceforth, under legal penalty of removal, be referred to and treated as a "daughter."

Coming from a traditional society still governed by tyrannical precepts of common sense and not accustomed to the ways of the asylum where in search of a better life he and his family inadvertently ended up, the father (a title that like mother, now officially "number one parent," is also on the way out ) was able to conceive his tragic predicament only by weaving a complex conspiracy theory:

"They were trying to create a customer for their gender clinic . . . and they seemed to absolutely want to push us in that direction. We had calls with counsellors and therapists in the establishment, telling us how important it is for him to change his gender, because that's the only way he's going to be better out of this suicidal depressive state."

Since in the equally looney state of Washington the age when minors can request a gender-change surgery without parental consent is 13, the Pakistani parents saw clearly the writing on the wall and, bless them, they came up with a clever stratagem to outwit their callous ideological tormentors. Ahmed "assured Seattle Children's Hospital that he would take his son to a gender clinic and commence his son's transition. Instead, he collected his son, quit his job, and moved his family of four out of Washington."

Perhaps feeling the heat from the linguistic Gestapo even in his celebrity kitchen, iconic chef Jamie Oliver has come on board. Absurdly, Jamie vowed fealty to the ascendant normal by dropping the term "Kaffir lime leaves" from his recipes , in fear that the alleged "historically racist slur" would offend South Africans. No evidence at all has been furnished or demanded of complaints from South Africa in that regard. But it speaks volumes that someone of Jamie's influence and visibility should nevertheless deem it prudent to anticipate such criticism even though, should it have materialised, it of course would not originate from South Africa but from white Western political correctness commissars.

Jamie is now busy, but not just cooking. He is going over his previously published recipes in order to expunge all offensive references to kefir leaves. Orwell aficionados will recall this precious passage from 1984 : "Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered." And now every recipe as well. The dystopia fits, does it not, to a tee even something as seemingly trivial as a cooking show?

But it is not just recipes. Children's fairy tales are also fair game for 1984 revision. Hollywood actress Natalie Portman ( Star Wars , The Professional , Thor ), inspired apparently by the new cultural normal, has taken it upon herself not to write, but to re-write, several classic fairy tales to make them "gender-neutral," so "children can defy gender stereotypes." Predictably, pronouns were again a major target:

"I found myself changing the pronouns in many of their books because so many of them had overwhelmingly male characters, disproportionate to reality," quoth Natalie as she put her linguistic scalpel to such old favourites as The Tortoise and the Hare , Country Mouse and City Mouse and The Three Little Pigs .

Need we go on, or does the sharp reader already get the general drift? How about State University of New York student Owen Stevens , who was suspended and censured for pointing out on his Instagram the ascertainable biological fact that "A man is a man, a woman is a woman. A man is not a woman and a woman is not a man." (Owen was snitched on by fellow students, readers from the former Eastern bloc will be amused to learn.) Or the Nebraska university basketball coach who was suspended for using in a motivational speech the mysteriously offensive word "plantation"? Or the hip $57,000-a-year NYC school that banned students from saying "mom" and "dad" , from asking where classmates went on vacation or wishing anyone "Merry Christmas" or even "Happy Holidays"? Or female university student Lisa Keogh in Scotland who said in class "women have vaginas" (who would be better informed than she on that subject?) and are "not as strong as men", who is facing disciplinary action by the university after fellow classmates complained about her "offensive and discriminatory" comments? Or Spanish politician Francisco José Contreras whose Twitter account was blocked as a warning for 12 hours after he tweeted what some would regard as the self-evident truth that "men cannot get pregnant" because they have "no uterus or eggs"?

As Peter Hitchens noted recently "the most bitterly funny story of the week is that a defector from North Korea thinks that even her homeland is 'not as nuts' as the indoctrination now forced on Western students."

One of Yeonmi Park's initial shocks upon starting classes at Colombia University was to be met with a frown after revealing to a staff member that she enjoyed reading Jane Austen. "Did you know," Ms. Park was sternly admonished, "that those writers had a colonial mind-set? They were racists and bigots and are subconsciously brainwashing you."

But after encountering the new requirement for the use of gender-neutral pronouns, Yeonmi concluded: "Even North Korea is not this nuts North Korea was pretty crazy, but not this crazy." Devastatingly honest, but not exactly a compliment to what once might have been the land of her dreams.

Sadly, Hitchens reports that her previous experience served Yeonmi well to adapt to her new situation: "She came to fear that making a fuss would affect her grades and her degree. Eventually, she learned to keep quiet, as people do when they try to live under intolerant regimes, and let the drivel wash over her."

Eastern European readers will unfailingly understand what it is that Hitchens meant to say.

ay_arrow
Plus Size Model 9 hours ago

No worries! We're talking about two different things. You explicitly mentioned meanings of words in your initial post. Now you're also alluding to what a psyop officer would describe as manipulating the cognitive environment of a target group. Cognitive manipulation is a much larger toolbox and involves things like perception management, information management, memory retrieval, what old timers refer to as symbol manipulation, etc.

In psychological warfare literature, symbols are somewhat of a mental bookmark. You can really mess people up by altering the bookmarks slightly or changing around the files they reference in a prolonged campaign.

The Nazi swastika is probably the most successful symbol manipulation campaign ever. It means different things to different people and these meanings have evolved substantially over time. Each new generation and is indoctrinated with different presentations of the swastika. The wide latitude of interpretation and extreme views associated with it have consistently created huge social flash points over the past 90 years.

Lorenz Feedback 9 hours ago

I think somethings are being overlooked on this point, Semantic prosody concerns itself with the way unusual combinations of words can create intertextual 'resonance' and can suggest speaker/writer attitude and opinion. Consider the difference with using very powerful versus utterly compelling when presenting an argument. Some words shape narratives better than others and trigger a response well known to advertisers and propagandists...and help shape public opinion.

https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/55272357.pdf

Lordflin 9 hours ago

Yes... changing the context of words has a huge impact...

ie the word white is now seen in the context of numerous pejoratives...

Cautiously Pessimistic 10 hours ago

I fit in here in America less and less with each passing year. I feel like a stranger in my own country at times. I am sure that is by design.

Max Power 9 hours ago

On the other hand, as soon as people encounter real problems like hunger, bankruptcy, or homelessness, all this ivy league brainwashing evaporates in an instance. Just a stupid game played by wealthy white libtards believing in fairytales.

[May 15, 2021] On The Hypocrites At Apple Who Fired 'Chaos Monkeys' Author by Matt Taibbi

At lease Garicia Martinez got a huge advertizemnt for his book Chaos Monkeys- Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley
As for Apple, let's start with the statement that most Apple product are overrated and overpriced. Despite price, they are more of a fashion statement then technology marvels. Owning Apple is a lot like using Chanel por Dolche and Gabbana perfume. This is a statement that you are special.
Now by adopting "woke bolshevism" Apple will inevitably slide deeper into mediocrity.
May 15, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Matt Taibbi via TK News ,

I'm biased, because I know Antonio Garcia-Martinez and something like the same thing once happened to me, but the decision by Apple to bend to a posse of internal complainers and fire him over a passage in a five-year-old book is ridiculous hypocrisy. Hypocrisy by the complainers, and defamatory cowardice by the bosses -- about right for the Invasion of the Body Snatchers -style era of timorous conformity and duncecap monoculture the woke mobs at these places are trying to build as their new Jerusalem.

Anti-tax-avoidance protesters in France.

Garcia-Martinez is a brilliant, funny, multi-talented Cuban-American whose confessional memoir Chaos Monkeys is to big tech what Michael Lewis's Liar's Poker was to finance. A onetime high-level Facebook executive -- he ran Facebook Ads -- Antonio's book shows the House of Zuckerberg to be a cult full of on-the-spectrum zealots who talked like justice activists while possessing the business ethics of Vlad the Impaler:

Facebook is full of true believers who really, really, really are not doing it for the money, and really, really will not stop until every man, woman, and child on earth is staring into a blue-framed window with a Facebook logo.

When I read Chaos Monkeys the first time I was annoyed, because this was Antonio's third career at least -- he'd also worked at Goldman, Sachs -- and he tossed off a memorable bestseller like it was nothing. Nearly all autobiographies fail because the genre requires total honesty, and not only do few writers have the stomach for turning the razor on themselves, most still have one eye on future job offers or circles of friends, and so keep the bulk of their interesting thoughts sidelined -- you're usually reading a résumé, not a book .

Chaos Monkeys is not that. Garcia-Martinez is an immediately relatable narrator because in one breath he tells you exactly what he thinks of former colleagues ("A week before my last day, I had lunch with the only senior person at Goldman Sachs who was not an inveterate asshole") and in the next explains, but does not excuse, the psychic quirks that have him chasing rings in some of the world's most rapacious corporations. "Whenever membership in some exclusive club is up for grabs, I viciously fight to win it, even if only to reject membership when offered," he wrote. "After all, echoing the eminent philosopher G. Marx: How good can a club be if it's willing to have lowly me as a member?"

... ... ...

At one point, as a means of comparing the broad-shouldered British DIY expert favorably to other women he'd known, he wrote this:

Most women in the Bay Area are soft and weak, cosseted and naive despite their claims of worldliness, and generally full of shit. They have their self-regarding entitlement feminism, and ceaselessly vaunt their independence, but the reality is, come the epidemic plague or foreign invasion, they'd become precisely the sort of useless baggage you'd trade for a box of shotgun shells or a jerry can of diesel.

Out of context, you could, I guess, read this as bloviating from a would-be macho man beating his chest about how modern "entitlement feminism" would be unmasked as a chattering fraud in a Mad Max scenario. In context, he's obviously not much of a shotgun-wielder himself and is actually explaining why he fell for a strong woman, as the next passage reveals:

British Trader, on the other hand, was the sort of woman who would end up a useful ally in that postapocalypse, doing whatever work -- be it carpentry, animal husbandry, or a shotgun blast to someone's back -- required doing.

Again, this is not a passage about women working in tech. It's a throwaway line in a comedic recount of a romance that juxtaposes the woman he loves with the inadequate set of all others, a literary convention as old as writing itself. The only way to turn this into a commentary on the ability of women to work in Silicon Valley is if you do what Twitter naturally does and did, i.e. isolate the quote and surround it with mounds of James Damore references. More on this in a moment.

After trying the writer's life, Antonio went back to work for Apple. When he entered the change on his LinkedIn page, Business Insider did a short, uncontroversial writeup . Then a little site called 9to5Mac picked up on the story and did the kind of thing that passes for journalism these days, poring through someone's life in search of objectionable passages and calling for immediate disappearance of said person down a cultural salt mine. Writer Zac Hall quoted from Apple's Inclusion and Diversity page:

Across Apple, we've strengthened our long-standing commitment to making our company more inclusive and the world more just. Where every great idea can be heard. And everybody belongs.

Hall then added, plaintively, "This isn't just PR speak for Apple. The company releases annual updates on its efforts to hire diversely, and it puts its money where its mouth is with programs intended to give voice to women and people of color in technology. So why is Apple giving Garcia Martinez a great big pass?"

From there the usual press pile-on took place, with heroes at places like The Verge sticking to the playbook. "Silicon Valley has consistently had a white, male workforce," they wrote, apparently not bothered by Antonio's not-whiteness. "There are some in the Valley, such as notorious ex-Googler James Damore, who suggest this is because women and people of color lack the innate qualities needed to succeed in tech ."

Needless to say, Antonio never wrote anything like that, but the next step in the drama was similarly predictable: a group letter by Apple employees claiming, in seriousness, to fear for their safety. "Given Mr. García Martínez's history of publishing overtly racist and sexist remarks," the letter read, "we are concerned that his presence at Apple will contribute to an unsafe working environment for our colleagues who are at risk of public harassment and private bullying." All of this without even a hint that there's ever been anything like such a problem at any of his workplaces.

Within about a nanosecond, the same people at Apple who hired Antonio, clearly having read his book, now fired him, issuing the following statement:

At Apple, we have always strived to create an inclusive, welcoming workplace where everyone is respected and accepted. Behavior that demeans or discriminates against people for who they are has no place here.

The Verge triumphantly reported on Apple's move using the headline , "'Misogynistic' Apple hire is out hours after employees call for investigation." Other companies followed suit with the same formulation. CNN : "Apple parts ways with newly hired ex-Facebook employee after workers cite 'misogynistic' writing." CNET : "Apple reportedly cuts ties with employee amid uproar over misogynistic writing."

Apple by this point not only issued a statement declaring that Antonio's "behavior" was demeaning and discriminatory, but by essentially endorsing the complaints of their letter-writing employees, poured jet fuel on headline descriptions of him as a misogynist. It's cowardly, defamatory, and probably renders him unhirable in the industry, but this is far from the most absurd aspect of the story.

I'm a fan of Dr. Dre's music and have been since the N.W.A. days. It's not any of my business if he wants to make $3 billion selling Beats by Dre to Apple , earning himself a place on the board in the process. But if 2,000 Apple employees are going to insist that they feel literally unsafe working alongside a man who wrote a love letter to a woman who towers over him in heels, I'd like to hear their take on serving under, and massively profiting from, partnership with the author of such classics as "Bitches Ain't Shit" and "Lyrical Gangbang," who is also the subject of such articles as "Here's What's Missing from Straight Outta Compton: Me and the Other Women Dr. Dre Beat Up."

It's easy to get someone like Antonio Garcia Martinez fired. Going after a board member who's reportedly sitting on hundreds of millions in Apple stock is a different matter. A letter making such a demand is likely to be returned to sender, and the writer of it will likely spend every evaluation period looking over his or her shoulder. Why? Because going after Dre would mean forcing the company to denounce one of its more profitable investments -- Beats and Beats Music were big factors in helping Apple turn music streaming into a major profit center . The firm made $4.1 billion in that area last year alone.

Speaking of profits: selling iPhones is a pretty good business. It made Apple $47.9 billion last year, good for 53% of the company's total revenue. Part of what makes the iPhone such a delightfully profitable product is its low production cost, which reportedly comes from Apple's use of a smorgasbord of suppliers with a penchant for forced labor -- Uighurs said to be shipped in by the thousand to help make iPhone glass (Apple denies this), temporary "dispatch workers" sent in above legal limits , workers in "iPhone city" clocking excessive overtime to meet launch dates, etc. Apple also has a storied history of tax avoidance, offshoring over a hundred billion in revenues, using Ireland as a corporate address despite no physical presence there, and so on.

Maybe the signatories to the Apple letter can have a Chaos Monkeys book-burning outside the Chinese facility where iPhone glass is made -- keep those Uighur workers warm! Or they can have one in Dublin, to celebrate the €13bn tax bill a court recently ruled Apple didn't have to pay.

It's all a sham. The would-be progressives denouncing Garcia-Martinez don't seem to mind working for a company that a Democrat-led congressional committee ripped for using " monopoly power " to extract rents via a host of atrocious anti-competitive practices. Whacking an author is just a form of performative "activism" that doesn't hurt their bottom lines or their careers.

Meanwhile, the bosses who give in to their demands are all too happy to look like they're steeped in social concern, especially if they can con some virtue-signaling dink at a trade website into saying Apple's mechanically platitudinous "Shared Values" page "isn't just PR speak." You'd fire a couple of valuable employees to get that sort of P.R.

When I was caught up in my own cancelation episode, I was devastated, above all to see the effect it had on my family. Unlike Garcia-Martinez, I had past writings genuinely worth being embarrassed by, and I felt that it was important, morally and for my own mental health, to apologize in public. I didn't fight for my career and reputation, and threw myself on the mercy of the court of public opinion.

I now know this is a mistake. The people who launch campaigns like this don't believe in concepts like redemption or growth. An apology is just another thing they'd like to get, like the removal of competition for advancement. These people aren't idealists. They're just ordinary greedy Americans trying to get ahead, using the tactics available to them, and it's time to stop thinking of stories like this through any other lens.


nobaloney 4 hours ago

[neo]Liberal white women are the worst. The death of America.

Nicholi_Hel 2 hours ago remove link

The main thing that " is on it's way out" are all of your "smart" schizophrenic liberal hags. They are fleeing the big cities (especially CA) in droves because their psychopathic politics turned their states into crime ridden, dangerous ****holes with costs of living they can no longer afford.

Unfortunately they are flooding into red states like Texas bringing with them stale Marxism, tired feminism, couched slogans, sad cliches and of course their anti depressants and genital herpes.

gregga777 4 hours ago

Au contraire, mon ami! Look at how wondrously successful they've made US corporations like General Motors and The Boeing Company! /obviously sarcasm

SummerSausage PREMIUM 3 hours ago

Let's not forget the wonderous leadership of Carly Fiorina (HP), Elizabeth Holmes (Theranos) and Marissa Mayer (Yahoo)

McGantic 4 hours ago (Edited)

I completely disagree.

I find liberal women of certain other races to be far more offensive.

Nothing is worse than loud, uncouth jogger women with their in-your-face screaming and howling.

The definition of unsophisticated and to be avoided at all costs.

These liberal white women at least have some semblance of manners and intelligence.

espirit 3 hours ago

Just different tribes of howler monkeys...

rawhedgehog 4 hours ago

precisely the sort of useless baggage you'd trade for a box of shotgun shells

I think that covers about 90% of the surface population currently, not just Bay Area fems.

Agent Smith 3 hours ago

Not sure how many you'd get in exchange for an obese whining vaccine damaged genetic mutant. Maybe you could tout them as self propelled food?

Fool's Gold 3 hours ago

Made me laugh 😅

Notenoughtoys 4 hours ago

Matt Taibbi is brilliant - Wish all the ZH articles were as well written as this !

Seriously_confused 3 hours ago

Taibbi is half and half. He wants to tell the truth, but he wants to keep his woke friends so he often whimps and whiffs. He can write, but he has his head up his behind in much of his thinking. Every once in a while he comes up for air and writes something like this. The rest is wankerific

rawhedgehog 4 hours ago (Edited)

The company releases annual updates on its efforts to hire diversely

Yet where is their annual report on their use of slave labor in China and how that makes for a more inclusive and bright world. **** THIS CULTURE OF MORONS AND THOUGHT PUPPETS!

Matt, I enjoyed this article of yours but you need to make more noise exposing how slavery and the commoditization of human lives is the bedrock of modern tech.

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2021/may/11/apple-continues-use-china-slave-labor-report-shows/

M.C. 1215 4 hours ago

"They're just ordinary greedy Americans trying to get ahead, using the tactics available to them, and it's time to stop thinking of stories like these through any other lens."

That about sums it up.

Calculus99 3 hours ago

What a miserable place Apple must be to work in, always having to watch yourself for fear of the mob (even if you're part of that mob).

The internal moral in these giant corps must be shot to pieces.

skippy dinner 2 hours ago

Lots of other corporations sell cool gear. There is no need to buy Apple stuff.

It's only because of conformist acquiescence to peer-group pressures that people buy it.

look-at-them-apples.jpg (1679×797) (wp.com)

mendigo 3 hours ago (Edited)

No, the problem is not the employees at Apple.

The problem is the ahoLes who buy sht from that fing company - AppleFaceBookGoogle.

It is so easy to dump thEm - it is literally no effort.

Problems is there are a lot of people who dont care - about anything.

Nicholi_Hel 3 hours ago

I have no sympathy for the peter puffers that worked or work for Goldman Sachs, Facebook and or Apple.

This pickle smoocher worked for all three, now we are supposed to break out the tissues and violins because a group of vicious, screeching Bolsheviks ankle bit one of their own.

Boo hoo.

[May 12, 2021] Roger Daltrey - The 'Woke' Generation is Creating a Miserable World

Actor and Grammy Award winning musician Donald Glover says that television shows and movies are becoming increasingly boring because "people are afraid of getting cancelled." ZeroHedge
May 12, 2021 | summit.news

The Who legend Roger Daltrey says the 'woke' generation is creating a miserable world that serves to stifle the kind of creative freedom he enjoyed in the 60s.

The iconic frontman made the comments during a recent appearance on Zane Lowe's Apple Music 1 podcast.

"I don't know, we might get somewhere because it's becoming so absurd now with AI, all the tricks it can do, and the woke generation," said Daltrey.

"It's terrifying, the miserable world they're going to create for themselves. I mean, anyone who's lived a life and you see what they're doing, you just know that it's a route to nowhere," he added.

The singer noted how he was lucky to have lived through an era where freedom of speech was encouraged, not silenced.

"Especially when you've lived through the periods of a life that we've had the privilege to. I mean, we've had the golden era. There's no doubt about that," he said.

[May 11, 2021] I Hope We All Survive It -- Dave Chappelle Warns About Cancel Culture

Highly recommended!
May 11, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

The phenomenon of "cancel culture" is a toxic one metastasizing into a woke revolution war empowered by Big Tech and Big Business. Those unfamiliar with being canceled involve publicly shaming others and boycotting celebrities and companies. However, the art of canceling has progressed well beyond canceling public figures and is now used to garget average folks. The result can be devastating for ordinary people who may face the consequences of losing their jobs, losing friends and family, or having their social media accounts terminated.

Comedian Dave Chappelle partook in a video interview with Joe Rogan on "The Joe Rogan Experience" podcast about cancel culture. He told Rogan that he recognizes the change people are attempting to bring through activism and accountability for prominent folks but denounced cancel culture:

"I'm very lucky to be able to see people who are great at things up close," Chappelle said. "Even on this podcast ... it's one of the joys of my life getting to know these people and knowing and seeing them be human."

Chappelle said, "I hope we all survive it," while referring to the cancel culture storm gripping society. "That's why that cancel culture shit bothers me. I'm not even opposed to the ideas behind some of these cancelations. I get it."

Rogan said, "the inclination, all of it, is to make the world a better place." He said social media and public shaming have "gotten abused and misused by the wrong people and bad actors, but at the end of the day, the thing they think they're trying to do is eliminate bad aspects of our culture."

Last year, Chappelle criticized cancel culture, saying audiences have become "too brittle," adding that "everything you say upsets somebody."

Chappelle hasn't been the only well-known person to speak out against cancel culture, Curtis Jackson, known as "50 Cent," recently said cancel culture is " unfair " and "targeting straight men" who "don't have any organizations to back them up."

Jackson said he wouldn't get canceled because "hip-hop culture loves things that are damaged. It loves people who are already broken from experience."

A study by a top education think tank, Civitas, found that free speech at the world's leading universities is being eroded at a rapid rate due to "cancel culture."

Cancel culture may have had good intentions to hold people accountable for things they did or say. Instead, it has backfired and produced a toxic environment that limits freedom of speech and alienates anyone with opposing views. Society can't move forward if liberals cancel anyone they don't like - there needs to be an open forum where all voices are heard.

[May 07, 2021] Huxley and Orwell's protagonists could only dream of what Bezos and Gates do. The latter overthrew the US President and installed one they prefer

May 07, 2021 | www.unz.com

Huxley and Orwell's protagonists could only dream of what Bezos and Gates do. The latter overthrew the US President and installed one they prefer, and for good reason.

The combined net worth of the top 100 ultra-rich people in the US has skyrocketed by $195 billion since Biden took office, according to Bloomberg's calculations . These giants control the minds of billions.

Nations hock their lands and industries to purchase their patent medicines. These giants know our faces, our names, all about us, even the cells we are made of, down to the last protein. Gods have been defeated, gentle Christ and mighty Sabaoth, not to mention angry Allah. Is that a thing of which it is said, 'See, this is new'? (Eccl 1:10)

No, my jaundiced ancestor was right -- it has already been done in the ages before us.

[May 07, 2021] Historical Memory As Culture War Weapon by Rod Dreher

Notable quotes:
"... Live Not By Lies ..."
"... This sort of thing makes me think about what it will take to preserve important cultural memories. The digitalization of knowledge is, in this regard, actually an incredibly grave threat due to the way that digital records can easily be found and altered, essentially instantly. ..."
May 03, 2021 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Listen to the clip. She talks about how her ancestors were enslaved, and how she grew up under segregation (also true: she was born in 1952, and grew up in a northern suburb of Baton Rouge). But she goes from that awful true history to the "1619 Project" slander. This is important stuff. If white supremacy really is "weaved into our founding documents and principles," then the US founding is fatally compromised. You may have been under the impression that slavery and Jim Crow were failures of the US to live up to the promises of liberty in the founding documents -- and you would have been right! We fought a civil war over this. The Civil Rights Movement was launched as a great moral crusade to make those promises real for black Americans.

Now, though, history is being rewritten before our eyes by the Left.

This is going to have major repercussions. Please read historian Stanley Payne's essay on how the Spanish Left has revisited the historical settlement that allowed that civil war-wracked nation to live in peace and democracy, and is weaponizing it. Payne is one of the leading Anglophone historians of the Spanish Civil War. Excerpts:

In January 2020, the Socialist government of Spain, led by Pedro Sánchez, proposed a bill of profound cultural and political significance: a "Law of Historical and Democratic Memory." If adopted, this law will bring to completion a twenty-year effort on the part of the Spanish left to limit speech and reshape civic life. It would establish a national "Council of Memory," an organ of state comprising public officials as well as professional "experts" and representatives of nongovernmental but politically reliable organizations. It would elaborate a comprehensive state policy to promote a left view of Spain's early and mid-twentieth century. The bill mandates a search for the remains of a number of the "disappeared" on the Republican side in the Spanish Civil War of 1936–39 and the creation of a "National DNA Bank" to help identify them. It prescribes the placement of "memory plaques" throughout the country to identify sites and personalities associated with "democratic memory" -- the memory of radical opponents of the Franco regime, comparatively few of whom favored democracy. The "Law of Historical and Democratic Memory" calls on the Spanish government to identify and honor alleged "victims," without regard to the fact that many were likely involved in mass killings and extra-­judicial executions.

The proposed law is highly punitive. Symbols, meetings, or statements judged to approve of the Franco regime and the victors in the civil war are deemed infractions against "historical and democratic memory." Proposed penalties include an elaborate schedule of fines ranging from two hundred to a hundred thousand euros, the closing for a period of six months to two years of any entity found in violation, and the confiscation of the means or goods involved in any such activities. That this law will dramatically restrict freedom of expression and thus violate the Spanish Constitution is apparently irrelevant to the Sánchez government.

The Law of Historical and Democratic Memory is the most dramatic, arbitrary, and punitive proposal concerning discussions of history anywhere in the Western world. Yet the attitude it reflects is fairly common on the left, which increasingly uses governmental or nongovernmental means to restrict and punish speech that defends rightwing views, movements, and figures past or present. Politicized interpretations of history are, of course, not new. But Spain's proposed law is a stark sign of the way the contemporary left seeks to weaponize history to achieve its goals and silence all dissent.

If you think some version of this is not coming here, you are dreaming. We may not have a law -- which would violate the First Amendment -- but the complete hegemony the Left enjoys within the academy, publishing, and media will create a situation within a decade, perhaps less, in which historical opinions that run contrary to the 1619 Project claim will be seen as "problematic," and suppressed. More Payne:

The proposed law in Spain, however, marks a new tendency to weaponize history on behalf of demonstrably distorted and falsified interpretations that are politically useful rather than intellectually credible. This tendency is the product not of ignorance but of intense partisanship. It reflects a millenarian mentality that seeks to purge society of influences and attitudes stemming from the past in order to achieve a kind of purified utopia. Fundamental to this quest is the unrecognized search for a substitute to religious faith. This new political faith seeks to build a world of perfect equality and harmonized values. It imagines that progress can be made toward this immaculate world by presenting politically correct figures as martyrs who died for the coming utopia. This requires, in turn, scapegoating and driving out their supposed victimizers, who are alleged to be authors of the evils that assail society in its present, unredeemed state.

The tendency to weaponize history has always been strong in ultranationalist movements and is prominent as well among neo-traditional forces in the non-Western world. In the past, it has been employed by revolutionary movements of diverse stripes. Only recently has it been adopted by important sectors of major Western political parties -- a sign of their radicalization and their turn toward repressive measures of social control, even mind control.

The pandemic has stalled further consideration of the "Law of Historical and Democratic Memory." Spain has suffered proportionately the greatest devastation of any Western country, due in part to the incompetence and irresponsibility of its government. For the moment, the extreme left seems more fixated on delegitimizing the parliamentary monarchy established by the 1978 constitution, hoping to replace it with a Latin-American-style radical republic. The proposal to institutionalize "democratic memory" nonetheless remains. It is the most elaborate project in the Western world for the systematic weaponization of history. It confirms the penchant of the Spanish left, first expressed two centuries ago, for adopting the most extreme versions of leftwing ideas. It is a sign of where leftwing movements across the developed world will head if they are allowed to ­advance unopposed.

Read it all. It's important.

Establishing control of the historical narrative -- as opposed to allowing various competing narratives to flourish -- is a hallmark of a totalitarian regime. From Live Not By Lies :

No culture, and no person, can remember everything. A culture's memory is the result of its collective sifting of facts to produce a story -- a story that society tells itself to remember who it is. Without collective memory, you have no culture, and without a culture, you have no identity.

The more totalitarian a regime's nature, the more it will try to force people to forget their cultural memories. In Nineteen Eighty-Four, the role of Winston Smith within the Ministry of Information is to erase all newspaper records of past events to reflect the current political priorities of the Party. This, said the ex-communist Polish intellectual Leszek Kołakowski, reflects "the great ambition of totalitarianism -- the total possession and control of human memory."

"Let us consider what happens when the ideal has been effectively achieved," says Kołakowski. "People remember only what they are taught to remember today and the content of their memory changes overnight, if needed."

We know from the history of communist totalitarianism how this can be achieved through a total state monopoly on information, including ideological control of education and media. Laura Nicolae's experience at Harvard, where the next generation of American and global elites are trained, suggests how this can be accomplished even in free countries: by teaching those who aspire to leadership positions what it is important for them to remember, and what does not matter.

Again, a law like the one proposed in Spain is not really possible in the US, because of our Constitution. But the unwritten law of the culture, and the gatekeepers of culture, can achieve much the same thing. Dan-el Padilla Peralta, a black professor of Classics at Princeton and a leading revolutionary voice in the discipline, has called for considering "the demolition of the discipline itself" to achieve "reparative intellectual justice." You do not have to have a single law passed by any legislature for the radical Left to achieve the capture of cultural memory.

Oprah Winfrey and Lionsgate studios optioned the 1619 Project for film and television projects. Get used to the narrative that Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield puts forth in her address to Al Sharpton's group. It's going to become standard soon enough. Still, I would like to know if the President agrees with his UN Ambassador that the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution are embodiments of white supremacy.

C. L. H. Daniels 6 hours ago

This sort of thing makes me think about what it will take to preserve important cultural memories. The digitalization of knowledge is, in this regard, actually an incredibly grave threat due to the way that digital records can easily be found and altered, essentially instantly.

We won't need a hundred thousand Winstons, sorting through physical records and altering (or destroying) them.

All we will need is AI. Winston's role is already well within our technical capabilities to design and implement. All that is needed, essentially, is the agreement and active connivance of academia, social media, news media, and the major publishing companies to open up their digital databases to centralized access and editorial control. This does not seem like such a high hurdle, especially given recent examples such as Amazon's delisting of gender-critical titles and the apparent efforts by hundreds of CEO's to coordinate political action, etc. All it would take is a few such organizations getting together and agreeing that some sort of technologically centralized political censorship regime is desirable, and then collaborating to set up an umbrella organization that can be expanded over time to make it happen. No need for government involvement at all.

In the face of such things, what can dissidents do? Well, it's fairly essential to collect and archive as many physical copies as possible of important work, and even of things like daily newspapers. Digital editions can be manipulated at will; not so with print versions. But I think it is also important to wage digital guerilla warfare, given our likely inability to reproduce physical editions in anything approaching volume. It should be taken as given that the corporate-controlled infrastructure of the internet will not be available to help (and will, in fact, be in active opposition), which means resorting to means such as peer to peer networks to distribute tracts containing thought crime. Dark websites accessible only via the TOR browser can be set up to distribute news and information while making it difficult to trace traffic to and from them. These sorts of things are the 21st century equivalent of the sorts of things communist dissidents did with their underground printing presses.

It's frankly amazing to be thinking about such things.

[May 06, 2021] Aldous Huxley on lust for power

Notable quotes:
"... "Within the next generation I believe that the world's rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience." ..."
"... all those responsible for this plandemic are guilty of crimes against humanity. ..."
May 06, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

ebworthen 15 hours ago

"Within the next generation I believe that the world's rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience."

Indeed. Dr. Fauxi is a quack and the medical establishment has lost all credibility.

GoodyGumdrops 15 hours ago

Fauci is an evil psychopath and all those responsible for this plandemic are guilty of crimes against humanity.

[May 06, 2021] Aldous Huxley Foresaw Our Despots - Fauci, Gates, The Vaccine Crusaders

This is starting to look really like staging of "Brave new world..." Today's society is closer to Huxley's "Brave New World" than to Orwell's "1984". But there are clear elements of both. If you will, the worst of both worlds has come true today.
May 06, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Patricia McCarthy via AmericanThinker.com,

In 1949, sometime after the publication of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four , Aldous Huxley, the author of Brave New World (1931), who was then living in California, wrote to Orwell. Huxley had briefly taught French to Orwell as a student in high school at Eton.

Huxley generally praises Orwell's novel, which to many seemed very similar to Brave New World in its dystopian view of a possible future. Huxley politely voices his opinion that his own version of what might come to pass would be truer than Orwell's. Huxley observed that the philosophy of the ruling minority in Nineteen Eighty-Four is sadism, whereas his own version is more likely, that controlling an ignorant and unsuspecting public would be less arduous, less wasteful by other means. Huxley's masses are seduced by a mind-numbing drug, Orwell's with sadism and fear.

The most powerful quote In Huxley's letter to Orwell is this:

Within the next generation I believe that the world's rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience.


Aldous Huxley.

Could Huxley have more prescient? What do we see around us?

Masses of people dependent upon drugs, legal and illegal. The majority of advertisements that air on television seem to be for prescription drugs, some of them miraculous but most of them unnecessary. Then comes COVID, a quite possibly weaponized virus from the Fauci-funded-with-taxpayer-dollars lab in Wuhan, China. The powers that be tragically deferred to the malevolent Fauci who had long been hoping for just such an opportunity. Suddenly, there was an opportunity to test the mRNA vaccines that had been in the works for nearly twenty years. They could be authorized as an emergency measure but were still highly experimental. These jabs are not really vaccines at all, but a form of gene therapy . There are potential disastrous consequences down the road. Government experiments on the public are nothing new .

Since there have been no actual, long-term trials, no one who contributed to this massive drug experiment knows what the long-term consequences might be. There have been countless adverse injuries and deaths already for which the government-funded vaccine producers will suffer no liability. With each passing day, new side-effects have begun to appear: blood clots, seizures, heart failure.

As new adverse reactions become known despite the censorship employed by most media outlets, the more the Biden administration is pushing the vaccine, urging private corporations to make it mandatory for all employees. Colleges are making them mandatory for all students returning to campus.

The leftmedia are advocating the "shunning" of the unvaccinated. The self-appointed virtue-signaling Democrats are furious at anyone and everyone who declines the jab. Why? If they are protected, why do they care? That is the question. Same goes for the ridiculous mask requirements . They protect no one but for those in operating rooms with their insides exposed, yet even the vaccinated are supposed to wear them!

Months ago, herd immunity was near. Now Fauci and the CDC say it will never be achieved? Now the Pfizer shot will necessitate yearly booster shots. Pfizer expects to make $21B this year from its COVID vaccine! Anyone who thinks this isn't about money is a fool. It is all about money, which is why Fauci, Gates, et al. were so determined to convince the public that HCQ and ivermectin, both of which are effective, prophylactically and as treatment, were not only useless, but dangerous. Both of those drugs are tried, true, and inexpensive. Many of those thousands of N.Y. nursing home fatalities might have been prevented with the use of one or both of those drugs. Those deaths are on the hands of Cuomo and his like-minded tyrants drunk on power.

Months ago, Fauci, et al. agreed that children were at little or no risk of getting COVID, of transmitting it, least of all dying from it. Now Fauci is demanding that all teens be vaccinated by the end of the year! Why? They are no more in danger of contracting it now than they were a year ago. Why are parents around this country not standing up to prevent their kids from being guinea pigs in this monstrous medical experiment? And now they are " experimenting " on infants. Needless to say, some have died. There is no reason on Earth for teens, children, and infants to be vaccinated. Not one.

Huxley also wrote this:

"The surest way to work up a crusade in favor of some good cause is to promise people they will have a chance of maltreating someone. To be able to destroy with good conscience, to be able to behave badly and call your bad behavior 'righteous indignation' -- this is the height of psychological luxury, the most delicious of moral treats ."

- Crome Yellow

Perhaps this explains the left's hysterical impulse to force these untested shots on those of us who have made the decision to go without it. If they've decided that it is the thing to do, then all of us must submit to their whims. If we decide otherwise, it gives them the righteous right to smear all of us whom they already deplore.

As C.J. Hopkins has written , the left means to criminalize dissent. Those of us who are vaccine-resistant are soon to be outcasts, deprived of jobs and entry into everyday businesses. This kind of discrimination should remind everyone of ...oh, Germany three quarters of a century ago. Huxley also wrote, "The propagandist's purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human." That is precisely what the left is up to, what BLM is planning, what Critical Race Theory is all about.

Tal Zaks, Moderna's chief medical officer, said these new vaccines are "hacking the software of life." Vaccine-promoters claim he never said this, but he did. Bill Gates called the vaccines " an operating system " to the horror of those promoting it, a Kinsley gaffe. Whether it is or isn't hardly matters at this point, but these statements by those behind the vaccines are a clue to what they have in mind.

There will be in the next generation or so a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude and producing dictatorship without tears , so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them but will rather enjoy it.

This is exactly what the left is working so hard to effect: a pharmacologically compromised population happy to be taken care of by a massive state machine. And while millions of people around the world have surrendered to the vaccine and mask hysteria, millions more, about 1.3 billion, want no part of this government vaccine mania.

In his letter to Orwell, Huxley ended with the quote cited above and again here because it is so profound:

Within the next generation I believe that the world's rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience.

Huxley nailed the left more than seventy years ago, perhaps because leftists have never changed throughout the ages. 61,497 173


Fat Beaver 14 hours ago (Edited)

If i am to be treated as an outcast or an undesirable because i refuse the vax, i will immediately become someone that has zero reverence for the law, and i can only imagine 10's of millions will be right there with me.

strych10 14 hours ago

Welcome to the club.

We have coffee in the corner and occasional meetings at various bars.

Dr. Chihuahua-González 13 hours ago

I'm a doctor, you could contact me anytime and receive your injection.

Fat Beaver 13 hours ago (Edited)

I've gotta feeling the normie world you think you live in is about to change drastically for the worse...

sparky139 PREMIUM 10 hours ago

You mean you'll sign papers that you injected us *wink *wink? And toss it away?

bothneither 2 hours ago

Oh geez how uncommon, another useless doctor with no Scruples who sold out to big Pharma. Please have my Gates sponsored secret sauce.

Unknown 6 hours ago (Edited)

Both Huxley and Orwell are wrong. Neoliberalism (the use of once office for personal gains) is by far the most powerful force that subjugates the inept population. Neoliberalism demolished the mighty USSR, now destroying the USA, and will do the same to China. And this poison dribbles from the top to bottom creating self-centered population that is unable to unite, much less resist.

Deathrips 15 hours ago (Edited) remove link

Tylers.
You gonna cover Tucker Carlsons show earlier today on FOX news about vaxxx deaths? almost 4k reported so far this year.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIJQuk-qK2o

19331510 14 hours ago (Edited)

https://www.openvaers.com/covid-data/death-stats

AGE Deaths

0-24 23

25-50 184

51-65 506

66-80 1164

81-100 1346

U 321

R.I.P.

Joe Joe Depends 13 hours ago

India up in arms about mere 1%

spanish flu was 3%

JimmyJones 9 hours ago

Is the population of india up in arms or is the MSM?

Nelbev 10 hours ago

Facebook just flagged/censored it, must sign into see vid, Tuck also failed to mention mRNA and adenovirus vaxes were experimental and not FDA approved nor gone through stage III trials. Beside deaths, have blood clot issues. Good he mentioned how naturally immune if get covid and recovered, better than vaccine, but not covered for bogus passports. Me personally, I would rather catch covid and get natural immunity than be vaccinated with an untested experimental vaccine.

19331510 14 hours ago

Covid19 links.

Websites:

https://www.americasfrontlinedocs.com/media/

https://covid19criticalcare.com/

https://childrenshealthdefense.org/

https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/

https://www.constitutionalrightscentre.ca/category/news/

https://doctors4covidethics.medium.com/

https://www.flemingmethod.com/

https://gbdeclaration.org/

https://www.lifesitenews.com/

https://healthimpactnews.com/

https://www.mercola.com/

https://drleemerritt.com/

https://www.drtenpenny.com/

https://principia-scientific.com/

https://standupcanada.solutions/canadian-doctors-speak

https://thehighwire.com/

https://vaccinechoicecanada.com/ https://vaccinechoicecanada.com/links/general-links/

Video Sharing : https://www.bitchute.com/ ; https://brandnewtube.com/ ; https://odysee.com/ ; https://rumble.com/ https://superu.net

Healthcare Professionals :

Dr. Jayanta Bhattacharya; Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche; Dr. Ron Brown; Dr. Ryan Cole; Dr. Richard Fleming; Dr. Simone Gold; Dr. Sunetra Gupta; Dr. Carl Heneghan; Dr. Martin Kulldorff; Dr. Paul Marik; Dr. Peter McCullough; Dr. Joseph Mercola; Dr. Lee Merritt; Dr. Judy Mikovits; Dr. Dennis Modry; Dr. Hooman Noorchashm; Dr. Harvey Risch; Dr. Sherri Tenpenny; Dr. Richard Urso; Dr. Michael Yeadon;

A list of Canadian doctors: https://standupcanada.solutions/canadian-doctors-speak

Lawyers : Dr. Reiner Fuellmich; Rocco Galati;

Drug Adverse Reaction Databases:

http://www.adrreports.eu/en/index.html (Search; Suspected Drug Reactions Reports for Substances) COVID-19 MRNA VACCINE MODERNA (CX-024414); COVID-19 MRNA VACCINE PFIZER-BIONTECH; COVID-19 VACCINE ASTRAZENECA (CHADOX1 NCOV-19); COVID-19 VACCINE JANSSEN (AD26.COV2.S)

https://vaers.hhs.gov/data.html

Research papers :

https://cormandrostenreview.com/report/ (pcr tests)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7680614/ (face masks)

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/eci.13484 (lock downs)

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc2026670 (child/teacher morbidity)

https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.11.01.20222315v1 (transmission by children)

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7010e3.htm (masks/restaurants)

https://www.mdpi.com/1648-9144/57/3/199 (biased trial reporting)

Covid19 links.

Websites:

https://www.americasfrontlinedocs.com/media/

https://covid19criticalcare.com/

https://childrenshealthdefense.org/

https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/

https://www.constitutionalrightscentre.ca/category/news/

https://doctors4covidethics.medium.com/

https://www.flemingmethod.com/

https://gbdeclaration.org/

https://www.lifesitenews.com/

https://healthimpactnews.com/

https://www.mercola.com/

https://drleemerritt.com/

https://www.drtenpenny.com/

https://principia-scientific.com/

https://standupcanada.solutions/canadian-doctors-speak

https://thehighwire.com/

https://vaccinechoicecanada.com/ https://vaccinechoicecanada.com/links/general-links/

Video Sharing : https://www.bitchute.com/ ; https://brandnewtube.com/ ; https://odysee.com/ ; https://rumble.com/ https://superu.net

Healthcare Professionals :

Dr. Jayanta Bhattacharya; Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche; Dr. Ron Brown; Dr. Ryan Cole; Dr. Richard Fleming; Dr. Simone Gold; Dr. Sunetra Gupta; Dr. Carl Heneghan; Dr. Martin Kulldorff; Dr. Paul Marik; Dr. Peter McCullough; Dr. Joseph Mercola; Dr. Lee Merritt; Dr. Judy Mikovits; Dr. Dennis Modry; Dr. Hooman Noorchashm; Dr. Harvey Risch; Dr. Sherri Tenpenny; Dr. Richard Urso; Dr. Michael Yeadon;

A list of Canadian doctors: https://standupcanada.solutions/canadian-doctors-speak

Lawyers : Dr. Reiner Fuellmich; Rocco Galati;

Drug Adverse Reaction Databases:

http://www.adrreports.eu/en/index.html (Search; Suspected Drug Reactions Reports for Substances) COVID-19 MRNA VACCINE MODERNA (CX-024414); COVID-19 MRNA VACCINE PFIZER-BIONTECH; COVID-19 VACCINE ASTRAZENECA (CHADOX1 NCOV-19); COVID-19 VACCINE JANSSEN (AD26.COV2.S)

https://www.openvaers.com/

Research papers :

https://cormandrostenreview.com/report/ (pcr tests)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7680614/ (face masks)

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/eci.13484 (lock downs)

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc2026670 (child/teacher morbidity)

https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.11.01.20222315v1 (transmission by children)

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7010e3.htm (masks/restaurants)

https://www.mdpi.com/1648-9144/57/3/199 (biased trial reporting)

Ultramarines 15 hours ago (Edited)

His making of the gamma and delta workforce was quite prescient. We are seeing it play out now, we all know gammas and delta. There was a really good ABC tv movie made in 1980 Brave New World. Excellent show, it shows the Alphas and names them Rothchild and so on. Shows what these people specifically want to do to the world. I wonder if the ruling psychopaths actually wait for science fiction authors to plan the future and then follow their script.

Mineshaft Gap 10 hours ago

If Huxley were starting out today no major publisher would touch him.

They'd tell him Brave New World doesn't have a diverse enough of cast. Even the mostly likable totalitarian guy named Mustapha turns out to be white! A white Mustapha. It's soooo triggering. Also, what's wrong with a little electronic fun and drug taking, anyway? Lighten up , Aldous.

Meanwhile his portrait of shrieking medieval Catholic nuns who think they're possessed in The Devils of Loudun might remind the leftist editors too uncomfortably of their own recent bleating performances at "White Fragility" struggle sessions.

Sorry, Aldous. Just...too...problematic.

[May 05, 2021] The people tearing down statues and being "woke" at every little thing seem to wander about and flop around in a state of perpetual confusion. They have no guiding principles or the hand of righteousness to steady them. They are hollow !

May 05, 2021 | www.unz.com

Marckus , says: May 5, 2021 at 1:38 pm GMT • 4.9 hours ago

The people tearing down statues and being "woke" at every little thing seem to wander about and flop around in a state of perpetual confusion. They have no guiding principles or the hand of righteousness to steady them. They are hollow ! Every waking hour of their lives is consumed with all this nonsense.

They want to smash everything without really knowing why. They are happiest when all is ruin and then look around in dismay at what they have done and what they will now have to live with. This fills their emptiness because there is nothing else to do so. Folks like this burn out either destroyed by others, frequently destroying themselves, first the soul, then the body. What kind of a jackass torches his own neighbourhood, in effect shits in his soup bowl ?

The woke and cancel culture do ! It must be fun for them but after the laughter comes those tears.

Zarathustra , says: May 5, 2021 at 4:58 pm GMT • 1.5 hours ago

Cancel culture? What is cancel culture?
Cancel culture is only another stupid new name for dictatorship.

[May 03, 2021] The NYT is simply a propaganda organ of the corporate oligarchy. Whenever the US does something bad, it is always "alleged". When opponents of US hegemony are accused of doing something bad, it is never "alleged"

Apr 27, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org
Gerald Smith , Apr 27 2021 9:00 utc | 7

The NYT is simply a propaganda organ of the corporate oligarchy. Whenever the US does something bad, it is always "alleged". When opponents of US hegemony are accused of doing something bad, it is never "alleged" - for example, you won't read about the "alleged Douma chemical attack" in the NYT.

Just a small point about English grammar: "alleged burglar", "alleged miracle" and "alleged conspiracy" are all correct, because "alleged" is being used here as an adjective. "Alleged antique vase", on the other hand, is incorrect because what is being alleged is not that the object is a vase; what is being alleged is that the vase is antique. Because it is being used to describe an adjective (antique), it is being used adverbially: therefore the correct usage is "allegedly antique vase".

This reminds me of John Michael Greer's formulation: the "allegedly smart phone". I use it all the time, to imply that intensive users of mobile devices may not be quite as intelligent as is generally believed. Note that what is being is alleged is not that it's a phone, but that it's smart!

Otter , Apr 27 2021 12:10 utc | 20

NYT does use "alleged" correctly. In the land of truth, one need merely state one's statement. In the land of lies, one must insert "alleged", so that others know the statement is truth.

There was a Soviet aphorism to this effect.

[May 03, 2021] The parody on Bolshevism is here: higher education now means subsidizing the political activists who have hijacked it by John Ellis

May 02, 2021 | www.wsj.com

An advanced society functions by creating a series of institutions, telling them what it wants them to do, and funding them to do it. Institutions like the police, fire departments, courts and schools do the jobs society creates them to do. But one American institution -- higher education -- has decided to repurpose itself. It has set aside the job given to it by society and substituted a different one.

Higher education had a cluster of related purposes in society. Everyone benefited from the new knowledge it developed and the well-informed, thoughtful citizenry it produced. Individual students benefited from the preparation they received for careers in a developed economy. Yet these days, academia has decided that its primary purpose is the promotion of a radical political ideology, to which it gives the sunny label "social justice."

That's an enormous detour from the institutional mission granted to higher education by society -- and a problem of grave consequence. For the purpose that academia has now given itself happens to be the only one that the founding documents of virtually all colleges and universities take care to forbid pre-emptively. The framers of those documents understood that using the campuses to promote political ideologies would destroy their institutions, because ideologies would always be rigid enough to prevent the exploration of new ideas and the free exercise of thought. They knew that the two purposes -- academic and political -- aren't simply different, but polar opposites. They can't coexist because the one erases the other.

The current political uniformity of college faculty illustrates the point. It meets the needs of the substitute purpose very well, but only by annihilating the authorized one. Analytical thinking requires exploring a range of alternatives, but political crusades require the opposite: exclusive belief and commitment. That's how far off course academia has gone in its capricious self-repurposing.

Though most Americans aren't happy about this, academia has no qualms. No matter how many times the lack of intellectual diversity on politicized, one-party campuses is decried as unhealthy and educationally ruinous, the campuses won't listen. There was once internal debate about higher education's direction between traditional academic scholars and radical political activists, but that debate is long over. The activists, now firmly in control, have no interest in what the dwindling ranks of scholars have to say.

... ... ...

[Apr 28, 2021] Biden Administration To Ban Menthol Cigarettes... Because They're 'Racist'- - ZeroHedge

Creepy Uncle Joe claims that regular flavored cigarettes don't kill as many black people as menthol cigarettes and will henceforth be canceled...
Apr 28, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Menthol cigarettes are racist. Regular flavored cigarettes don't kill as many black people as menthol cigarettes and will henceforth be canceled. Because black people will ever only smoke menthol cigarettes and never smoke regular flavored cigarettes, right?

Washington Post:

On menthol, African American health groups and researchers say it is clear that Blacks have been disproportionately hurt by the cigarettes, which studies show are more addictive and harder to stop using than non-menthol cigarettes.

In the 1950s, only about 10 percent of Black smokers used menthol cigarettes. Today, that proportion is more than 85 percent, three times the rate for White smokers . African Americans die of tobacco-related illnesses, including cancer and heart disease, at higher rates than other groups, according to studies.

I smoked 3 packs of cigarettes a day most of my adult life and I can tell you without hesitation or qualification that anyone who believes canceling one kind of cigarettes will get people to stop smoking should be fired for rank stupidity.


GodEmperor0fMankind 1 hour ago

He cant even get his son to stop smokin crack

ted41776 47 minutes ago

while naked in bed with underage relatives? allegedly

Hedgehog77 1 hour ago

But smoking meth and ****ting on the sidewalk is just fine.

onasip123 1 hour ago

When Menthol cigarettes are outlawed, only outlaws will have Menthol cigarettes.

dukeofthefoothills 1 hour ago

Biden: "If you smoke regular cigarettes, you're not Black, man."

Nature_Boy_Wooooo 1 hour ago

This is so awesome.

awake283 1 hour ago

When I smoked, I really only smoked menthols. Does that mean I was appropriating black culture?

-- ALIEN -- 1 hour ago

Reparations need to be made!

Gentleman Bastard 1 hour ago

Looks like a black market opportunity for menthol cigarettes just opened up.

HRH of Aquitaine 2.0 1 hour ago

Yep great minds think alike.

Lord Raglan 39 minutes ago (Edited)

Oregon legalized cocaine but they've outlawed straws.

Must be frustrating.

There's classic liberal logic for you.

holmes 1 hour ago

Blacks like menthol cigs better. So these cigs are racist. So does that make fried chicken racist also?

the6thBook PREMIUM 1 hour ago

Shouldn't blacks be upset that they are banning their cigarettes? Trying to make blacks smoke white cigarettes?

cowdiddly 37 minutes ago

Well, Obama did warn you that this Dotard was dumb as a rock.

I Believed him.

[Apr 22, 2021] Pastors as black Bolsheviks: some black churches try to hold Home Depot hostage

"History Does Not Repeat Itself, But It Rhymes" -- Mark Twain (attributed). This is a naked fight for political power using very questionable means.
Marxist ideology revolving around class and special role of "proletariat" as the oppressed class which strives for liberation and overthow "oppressors" in order to build more a just society, is more or less replaced by race. In woke movement, blacks are the new proletariat.
Apr 22, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Corporations, especially those headquartered in Georgia, have come out against the legislation signed by Governor Kemp. Republicans describe the bill as one that addresses election integrity while Democrats call it a voter suppression law – "Jim Crow 2.0". Coca-Cola and Delta were among the first to make a point to virtue-signal after the governor signed the bill, only to be exposed as taking part in the process and giving input into the legislation. Both were fine with the law until the governor signed it and grievance activists did their thing. Coke soon discovered that not all of its consumers think that companies should be making policy – that 's the job of lawmakers- and now it is trying to clean up the mess it made for itself.

Churches have increasingly played a part in American politics and this is an escalation of that trend. Evangelical churches have shown support for conservative and Republican candidates while black churches get out the vote for Democrats. This threat of bringing a large-scale boycott over state legislation is a hostile action against the corporation. It's political theatre. Groups like Black Voters Matter, the New Georgia Project Action Fund (Stacey Abrams), and the Georgia NAACP are pressuring companies to publicly voice their opposition and the religious leaders are doing the bidding of these politically active groups.

When SB 241 and HB 531 were working through the legislative process, the groups put pressure on Republican lawmakers and the governor to abandon the voting reform legislation. They also demanded that donations to any lawmakers supporting the legislation be stopped. The Georgia Chamber of Commerce tried to remain bipartisan while still voicing support for voting rights but then caved and expressed "concern and opposition" to some provisions . At the time, several large Georgia companies were targeted by activists, including Aflac, Coca-Cola, Delta Airlines, Home Depot, Southern Company and UPS.

The Georgia Chamber of Commerce previously reiterated the importance of voting rights without voicing opposition against any specific legislation. In a new statement to CNBC, the Georgia Chamber said it has "expressed concern and opposition to provisions found in both HB 531 and SB 241 that restrict or diminish voter access" and "continues to engage in a bipartisan manner with leaders of the General Assembly on bills that would impact voting rights in our state."

Office Depot came out at the time and supported the Chamber's statement. The Election Integrity Act of 2021, originally known as Georgia Senate Bill 202, is a Georgia law overhauling elections in the state that was signed into effect by the governor and we know what happened. Office Depot has not delivered for the activists as they demand so now the company faces boycott drama. The religious leaders are taking up where the activist groups left off.

African Methodist Episcopal Bishop Reginald Jackson said the company has remained "silent and indifferent" to his efforts to rally opposition to the new state law pushed by Republicans, as well as to similar efforts elsewhere.

" We just don't think we ought to let their indifference stand ," Jackson said.

The leader of all his denomination's churches in Georgia, Jackson had a meeting last week with other Georgia-based executives to urge them to oppose the voting law, but said he's had no contact with Home Depot, despite repeated efforts to reach the company.

Faith leaders at first were hesitant to jump into the boycott game. Now the political atmosphere has changed and they are being vocal. Jackson focused on pressuring Coca-Cola first. After that company went along to get along, before it realized its error, Jackson moved his focus onto other companies.

"We believe that corporations have a corporate responsibility to their customers, who are Black, white and brown, on the issue of voting ," Jackson said. "It doesn't make any sense at all to keep giving dollars and buying products from people that do not support you."

He said faith leaders may call for boycotts of other companies in the future.

So, here we are with Home Depot in the spotlight. There are four specific demands leveled at Home Depot in order to avoid further action from the activists.

Rev. Lee May, the lead pastor of Transforming Faith Church, said the coalition is "fluid in this boycott" but has four specifics requests of Home Depot: To speak out publicly and specifically against SB 202; to speak out against any other restrictive voting provisions under consideration in other states; to support federal legislation that expands voter access and "also restricts the ability to suppress the vote;" and to support any efforts, including investing in litigation, to stop SB 202 and other bills like it.

" Home Depot, we're calling on you. I'm speaking to you right now. We're ready to have a conversation with you. You haven't been ready up to now, but our arms are wide open. We are people of faith. People of grace, and we're ready to have this conversation, but we're very clear those four things that we want to see accomplished ," May said.

The Rev. Timothy McDonald III, senior pastor of the First Iconium Baptist Church, warned this was just the beginning.

"It's up to you whether or not, Home Depot, this boycott escalates to phase two, phase three, phase four," McDonald said. "We're not on your property -- today. We're not blocking your driveways -- today. We're not inside your store protesting -- today. This is just phase one."

That sounds a lot like incitement, doesn't it? Governor Kemp is speaking out, he has had enough. He held a press conference to deliver his comments.

"First, the left came for baseball, and now they are coming for Georgia jobs," Kemp said, referring to MLB's decision to move this year's All-Star Game from Atlanta over the new laws. "This boycott of Home Depot – one of Georgia's largest employers – puts partisan politics ahead of people's paychecks."

"The Georgians hardest hit by this destructive decision are the hourly workers just trying to make ends meet during a global pandemic. I stand with Home Depot, and I stand with nearly 30,000 Georgians who work at the 90 Home Depot stores and 15 distribution centers across the Peach State. I will not apologize for supporting both Georgia jobs and election integrity," he added.

"This insanity needs to stop. The people that are pushing this, that are profiting off of it, like Stacey Abrams and others, are now trying to have it both ways," Kemp said. "There is a political agenda here, and it all leads back to Washington, D.C."

The governor is right. The activists are in it to federalize elections, not to look out for Georgians, who will lose jobs over these partisan actions. The law signed by Kemp increases voting rights, it doesn't limit them .

[Mar 31, 2021] False Assertions, Misleading Quotes, Fake Sources - How The NYT Writes Anti-China Screeds

Notable quotes:
"... New York Times ..."
"... New York Times ..."
Mar 31, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

Canadian Cents , Mar 31 2021 17:28 utc | 5

This, from yesterday's New York Times , is supposed to be a news piece:

An Alliance of Autocracies? China Wants to Lead a New World Order.

Written by Steven Lee Myers, the NYT 's bureau chief in Beijing, the piece is full of false and unsupported assertions. It changes explicit Chinese statements in support of democracy and human rights into the opposite. It is also untruthful about the sources of its quotes:

China hopes to position itself as the main challenger to an international order, led by the United States, that is generally guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law.

Such a system "does not represent the will of the international community," China's foreign minister, Wang Yi, told Russia's, Sergey V. Lavrov, when they met in the southern Chinese city of Guilin.

In a joint statement, they accused the United States of bullying and interference and urged it to "reflect on the damage it has done to global peace and development in recent years."

There is no evidence and no quote in the piece to support the assertion that the unilateral "international order, led by the United States" is in fact "guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law." The wars the U.S. and its allies have waged and wage in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen and other countries are, in fact, not in adherence to the rule of international law nor are they executed with respect for human rights or the principles of democracy.

The Wang Yi quote in the second paragraph is taken completely out of context. By placing it after his false assertions the author insinuates that Wang Yi rejected the "principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law."

Wang Yi did not do that at all. He did in fact the opposite.

Here is the original quote from the report of Wang Yi's meeting with Russia's foreign minister Sergei Lavrov:

Wang Yi said, the so-called "rules-based international order" by a few countries is not clear in its meaning , as it reflects the rules of a few countries and does not represent the will of the international community . We should uphold the universally recognized international law.

The there is the Joint Statement from the Lavrov-Wang Yi meeting which contradicts the New York Times insinuation:

The world has entered a period of high turbulence and rapid change. In this context, we call on the international community to put aside any differences and strengthen mutual understanding and build up cooperation in the interests of global security and geopolitical stability, to contribute to the establishment of a fairer, more democratic and rational multipolar world order.
  1. All human rights are universal, indivisible and interrelated. ...
  2. Democracy is one of the achievements of humanity. ...
  3. International law is an important condition for the further development of humanity. ...
  4. In promoting multilateral cooperation, the international community must adhere to principles such as openness and equality, and a non-ideological approach. ...

The Chinese Foreign Ministry report about the issuance of the above Four Point Statement quotes Wang Yi as saying:

Today, we will issue a joint statement on several issues of current global governance, expounding the essence of major concepts such as human rights, democracy, international order, and multilateralism, reflecting the collective demands of the international community, especially developing countries. We call on all countries to participate in and improve global governance in the spirit of openness, inclusiveness and equality, abandon zero-sum mentality and ideological prejudice, stop interfering in the internal affairs of any country, enhance the well-being of people of all countries through dialogue and cooperation, and jointly build a community with a shared future for mankind.

In no way has China rejected human rights, democracy or the rule of law. The New York Times author simply construed that.

The third NYT paragraph quoted above is likewise false. The Joint Statement did not urge the U.S. to "reflect on the damage it has done to global peace and development in recent years." There is nothing in there that could be construed as such. The U.S. is not even mentioned in the Joint Statement.

The quote the NYT author uses is not from the official Joint Statement, as falsely claimed, but from a Chinese State TV's summarization of a press conference :

Both foreign ministers said that the international community believes that the United States should reflect on the damage it has done to global peace and development in recent years , stop unilateral bullying, stop interfering in other countries' internal affairs, and stop pulling "small circles" to engage in group confrontation.

Unsupported assertions about the motives of the "U.S. led" order, out of context quotes that turn the actual statements by the Chinese foreign minister into their opposite and missattribution of a news summary as a diplomatic statement is something that one would not expect from a news outlet but from a propaganda organ.

That is then, obviously, what the Times has become.

Thanks b, for bringing this to light.

Without your posts, most of us - even those of us that try to dig into things more than most people - would not be aware of these things.

Western mainstream media will, of course, never inform the public of those important excerpts from the Lavrov-Wang Joint Statement and the Chinese Foreign Ministry that you brought to our attention.

In our so-called "democracies", the electorates are not just deliberately kept in the dark, but in fact shaped, not into informed voters, but disinformed voters.

-

Again to translate from the Orwellianism/Newspeak of our Western establishment news media, when they say "international order" what they really mean is the "Western deep-state-run order" or "Western neocon-run order."

"Generally guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law" can be translated to "generally guided by hypocrisy, Orwellianism, special interests, gangsterism, treachery, and mockery of rule of law."


Bernard F. , Mar 31 2021 17:31 utc | 6

Thanks b., ohne dich alles war still.

fallacia non causae ut causae
Eristische Dialektik: Die Kunst, Recht zu behalten / Arthur Schopenhauer 1831
[The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument]

Steven Lee Myers, the NYT's bureau
chief in Beijing just use a really classical and poor way to manipulate.


"an international order, led by the United States, that is generally guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law."

International order is not international law. LED by USA not by law. Generally (... No comment), principe of... (again)

Yes. Really pure Propagandastaffel.

But a good news. Why is NYT in a need to manipulate?

jo6pac , Mar 31 2021 17:35 utc | 7

Welcome back b

China is done rolling over Amerikas propaganda.

Chinese Foreign Ministry calls on WHO to address possible coronavirus leaks from US labs - World - TASS

A.L. , Mar 31 2021 17:54 utc | 9

...On a different note, i believe Steven Myers is just milling for a free ticket home and a promotion which he'll surely get once he's expelled from China for fabricating fake news.

Even during the worst of the cold war there were some respect and integrity on reporting facts. MSM of today is fully weaponized and had gone full goebbels.

peter , Mar 31 2021 18:32 utc | 10

"that is generally guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law"...

I haven't decided yet to either cry about the existence of such idiocies and such propaganda driven Idiots and what it says about the human condition or scream because the hypocrisy displayed continuously without shame and any twinge of self-awareness' becomes unbearable.

karlof1 , Mar 31 2021 19:25 utc | 16

Okay, then what can we infer from this lie-filed screed? I suggest that the NY Times and its manipulators are against all the highlighted portions of this point b highlighted from the 4 Point Joint Statement:

"Today, we will issue a joint statement on several issues of current global governance, expounding the essence of major concepts such as human rights, democracy, international order, and multilateralism, reflecting the collective demands of the international community, especially developing countries . We call on all countries to participate in and improve global governance in the spirit of openness, inclusiveness and equality, abandon zero-sum mentality and ideological prejudice, stop interfering in the internal affairs of any country, enhance the well-being of people of all countries through dialogue and cooperation, and jointly build a community with a shared future for mankind ."

All the bolded text is what the Outlaw US Empire, its vassals and its propaganda organs are against, as in opposed in a very proactive manner up to and including physical war waged on nations that try to promote any of those bolded items. The one main feature the Outlaw US Empire is dead set against occurring is the construction of a global community aimed at promoting a shared, equitable future for humanity for that's a Win-Win outcome, not a Zero-sum last man standing, winner take all outcome Neoliberalism demands. In other words, the NY Times is serving as a sort of American Pravda by detailing what its actual policies are without actually declaring them to be policies.

Ever notice that within US culture there's not one sport or game that has a shared outcome between several different participants, that there's only one winner (team or individual) and that its entire political-economy is modeled on that concept? That equality of outcomes is always subsumed by equality of participation? That if there's not going to be any equality overseas then there won't be any equality at home? And I can list many more. That all such arrangements are promoting a domineering authoritarian ethos never seems to dawn on far too many--I'm the head of the household so you must do as I say. We don't care if 80% of the public demand universal single payer health insurance, an end to forever wars, clean water for our communities, clean air to breathe, freedom from mass shootings, freedom from police riots, and so forth and so on. The NY Times and its controllers don't want anything of the sort for the US public or for anyone else on the planet. And that's the message it delivers every time it publishes an article filled with lies, falsehoods, innuendo, fabrications, etc., which is daily.

The NY Times ought to be called The Projector and sold with the tabloids.

Mike O , Mar 31 2021 20:14 utc | 18

Thanks b, when you wrote: "The New York Times author simply construed that."
I would change to: "The New York Times author maliciously construed that."

Obviously this crap is for domestic consumption.

Erelis , Mar 31 2021 20:15 utc | 19

Well, one thing for sure, non-stop propaganda works.

Polls say Americans report record low opinions of China

https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/26/us/americans-polling-china-public-opinion/index.html

Canadian Cents , Mar 31 2021 20:29 utc | 20

The "Five Eyes" countries, who just happen to all be Spawn of Perfidious Albion, seem to be more and more infected with the virus of Orwellianism (itself an idea of Anglo culture). Perhaps parallel to the out-of-control "Five Eyes" apparatus, or as a subset of it, there is an unspoken out-of-control "Five Mouths" apparatus, of which the NYT is a key outlet ...

Let's hope other countries do everything they can keep that virus out of their systems, and inoculate themselves and their populations well.

Jen , Mar 31 2021 22:48 utc | 32

Uncle Tungsten @ 23:

Steven Lee Myers used to work as a NYT correspondent in Moscow and Baghdad. He is the author of the tome "The New Tsar: the Rise and Reign of Vladimir Putin", the title of which alerts you to the tone of the garbage that wasted an entire plantation of pine trees.

You may wonder how Myers got the job as NYT bureau chief in Beijing. Wonder no more, the NYT's own advertisement for some lucky geezer to fill its bureau chief vacancy in Nairobi some years ago tells you the NYT only hires for such esteemed positions people whose heads are firmly stuck in a rabbit hole of Captain Biggles fantasy:

"Our Nairobi chief has a tremendous opportunity to dive into news and opportunity across a wide range of countries, from the deserts of Sudan to the pirate seas of Somalia, down through the forests of the Congo and the shores of Tanzania. It is an enormous patch of vibrant, intense and strategically important territory with many vital story lines, including terrorism, the scramble for resources, the global contest with China and the constant push-and-pull of democracy versus authoritarianism.

The ideal candidate should enjoy jumping on news, be willing to cover conflict, and also be drawn to investigative stories. There is also the chance to delight our readers with stories of hope and the changing rhythms of life in a rapidly evolving region."

Myers certainly knows how to jump on propaganda often and hard enough to turn into something faintly resembling ... news.

Ah, here we go: New Roles in Beijing Bureau

"... Steve moved to Beijing in 2016 and quickly built a portfolio that was as powerful as it was eclectic. His old world combined with his new one when he explored Russia's fury over China's hunger for timber. He detailed Beijing's spreading crackdown on Islam, analyzed China's exploration of the far side of the moon and reported on Hengdian World Studios, an outdoor movie and television lot scattered over 2,500 acres in eastern China. He also landed a rare interview with the Chinese actress Fan Bingbing after she was embroiled in a tax scandal.

At each stop along his journey, he has taken to heart the advice of the former executive editor Joe Lelyveld, devouring the local literature of his new home, not just the books by foreign correspondents. Lately, he has been reading Yan Lianke, the author of "The Day the Sun Died," and "Lenin's Kisses." He has an equally voracious appetite for Chinese cuisine, which he is offsetting by training for his eighth marathon ..."

And here's our own Chris Buckley who joined Myers on his arduous tour of duty in Beijing:

"... Chris [Buckley] is our resident China expert, having spent the past 20 years reporting on the country. He went into journalism essentially as an excuse to hang around China.

Born in Australia, he decided to abandon a law degree and went to Beijing to study Communist Party history at the People's University of China. After a half-hearted attempt to start an academic career, his odd jobs in teaching and translating turned into occasional fixer work for journalists, eventually in our own Beijing bureau.

He worked for Erik Eckholm and Elisabeth Rosenthal covering corruption scandals, political infighting, the SARS crisis and the outbreak of an AIDS epidemic in rural China. When they left, he worked for a while under a couple of obscure correspondents, Joe Kahn and Jim Yardley.

After a seven-year stint as a correspondent at Reuters, he returned to The Times in 2012. He spent the first three years waiting in Hong Kong for a visa, camping out at the Harbour Plaza Hotel for reasons that are unknown. From that perch, he wrote about the rise of Xi Jinping, his corruption campaign, his directive declaring war on liberal values, as well as the Umbrella Revolution. Since returning to the mainland, he has been a force behind our coverage of the crackdown on the Uighurs in Xinjiang and the country's shift toward authoritarianism, while also taking on a more personal quest about Sichuan food."

Do you get the impression that these fellows jumped onto these cushy jobs for the food junkets?

uncle tungsten , Apr 1 2021 0:14 utc | 39
Jen #32

Thank you, that explains these scribbling cowards. Give me Wilfred Burchet and his integrity any day.

Not one of these has any more substance than the shadow of Wilfred Burchet.

Piotr Berman , Apr 1 2021 0:17 utc | 40
"... international order, led by the United States, that is generally guided by principles of democracy, respect for human rights and adherence to rule of law.
Such a system "does not represent the will of the international community," according to the Chinese.

We throw this statement into spectroscope to check if there is any weasel content, phrases that sound nice but are capacious enough to cover not so nice meaning. Would it be even better if the much tutted "international order" was not BASED on principles, rather than GUIDED BY principles, and even weaker, GENERALLY GUIDED? Going further on that path we can be INSPIRED by principles, GENERALLY INSPIRED, and then we can make a bold step to VAGELY INSPIRED. Going further, OCCASIONALLY VAGUELY INSPIRED.

[Mar 31, 2021] As Orwell foresaw, Airstrip-1 will always be allied with Oceania

Mar 31, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Apr 1 2021 0:32 utc | 41

snake @38--

The "England never lost control of its American Colonies" is a very long running theme. Yet, does it really matter which is the King of the Outlaw Nations? Certainly there are many shared attributes beyond language, elite conception of exceptionalism being a major trait. Neoliberalism certainly arose in England first and was exported here. And there are clearly linkages in the development of WW1 propaganda to get the USA to enter the war along with the post-war Anti-Communist Crusade that became the Cold War. But it was the CIA/NSA that developed the 5-Eyes, but prior to that there was Echelon and many other programs that went against the UK's interest. And as Orwell foresaw, Airstrip-1 will always be allied with Oceania. It serves the same purpose next to Europe that Japan does next to Asia. The UK's occupied, but few ever note that anymore. As sinners and murderers, both are pretty equal, but they aren't Siamese Twins either where one will die if separated from the other. As things now stand, both should hang together.

[Mar 31, 2021] The "Five Eyes" countries, who just happen to all be Spawn of Perfidious Albion, seem to be more and more infected with the virus of Orwellianism (itself an idea of Anglo culture)

Mar 31, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

Canadian Cents , Mar 31 2021 20:29 utc | 20

The "Five Eyes" countries, who just happen to all be Spawn of Perfidious Albion, seem to be more and more infected with the virus of Orwellianism (itself an idea of Anglo culture). Perhaps parallel to the out-of-control "Five Eyes" apparatus, or as a subset of it, there is an unspoken out-of-control "Five Mouths" apparatus, of which the NYT is a key outlet ...

Let's hope other countries do everything they can keep that virus out of their systems, and inoculate themselves and their populations well.

rico rose , Mar 31 2021 22:57 utc | 33

@canadian cents Orwellian is not an english invention. Actually Orwell translated the book from the russian original We by Jewgeni Semjatin. Written 1920 in St. Petersburg. Maybe its the best translation in history of literature. He translated not by word or even plot points. He managed to translate culturally.

He took more than 15 years for that and expressed his admiration for the book before by saying, he wishes the book will get the best translator in the world. Booth books are brilliant. I really recommend to read the original. You will understand very clear, where Orwell see the differences between anglo and russian.

For the rest, i am very agree with you. I can see fractals of the book now everyday and everywhere.

[Mar 27, 2021] New York Times Does Public Relations Work for the Pharmaceutical Industry by DEAN BAKER

Mar 21, 2021 | cepr.net

The industry needs some good PR right now. After all, its refusal to share its vaccine technology could end up costing millions of lives in the developing world. In addition, it could mean trillions of dollars of lost output as countries need to shut down large segments of their economy. But the NYT is there to help. It ran a lengthy article about the issue, which contains much useful information, but it maintains a framing favorable to the pharmaceutical industry. At the end of the piece, after giving the argument for broader sharing of technology and over-riding the industry's government-granted patent monopolies, the piece tells readers: "But governments cannot afford to sabotage companies that need profit to survive."

If the reporters/editors had read their piece, they would know that the companies in question had already made large profits, through being paid directly for their research and building manufacturing facilities, as was the case with Moderna and BioNtech (Pfizer's German partner), or with advance purchase agreements. No one is suggesting that these companies should not make a profit, so it is not clear on what planet this assertion originated.

It is possible to make profits directly on government contracts, as major military contractors like Lockheed and Boeing could explain to the New York Times. The advantage of having direct contracts for biomedical research is that a requirement of the contract could be that all findings are fully open-source so that researchers all over the world can benefit from them. (I discuss a mechanism for direct funding in chapter 5 of Rigged [it's free].)

... ... ...

It is probably worth mentioning inequality in this piece. The NYT, like most intellectual types, has done considerable hand-wringing over inequality in recent years, both overall and racial inequality. It is a safe bet that giving more money to pharmaceutical companies will mean more inequality and certainly benefit whites far more than Blacks. It might be useful if the paper paid a little attention to the policies that create inequality instead of just bemoaning it as an unfortunate feature of the economy.


mary s 5 days ago ,

Yes, the NYT is really good at covering the impact of policies that increase inequality and perpetuate structural racism but avoids drawing any lines to the policies themselves -- and the politics that create these policies -- by treating the status quo as a kind of state of nature.

Rath R. Weird 6 days ago ,

Innovation in vaccine design comes from advances in fundamental science, which is funded not by companies, but by NIH and NSF (predominantly). Pharma employs scientists trained using federal funds, freely uses federally funded resources, open access publications and open source software paid for through federal funds, buys up commercializable technologies in form of startups that grow out of federal science and funded by SBIR and STTR grants, kills most of them and overcharges taxpayers for the product. That's rarely mentioned. As is the fact that pharma actually sucks at the only thing that they are supposed to be good at - manufacturing. Quality problems have been plaguing AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Moderna - something that is discussed in trade publications and FDA meetings but doesn't make it to the NYT or TV news.

Alicia Carrot Rath R. Weird 5 days ago ,

This is spot on! Taxpayer funded research, yet the conglomerates are holding the patents and making a fortune off of open sourced information.

[Mar 26, 2021] There's too many options available to make ignorance enjoyable

If you are using Fakebook you are part of the problem. I am pretty tired of people who use these antisocial media platforms complaining when these platforms do what they do by their very nature.
Notable quotes:
"... The "reality police" have infiltrated down to the lowest levels now to look for "new normal" violators anywhere. ..."
"... I am pretty tired of people who use these antisocial media platforms complaining when these platforms do what they do by their very nature. ..."
"... Remember when Eric Schmidt got his panties in a twist because some enterprising soul had done some digital digging into his private life? ..."
"... All social media Big Tech platforms are SARPA surveillance programs that added some cool logo, a young captured jew type as Boss and some marketing to morons and lemmings. ..."
"... The sheer narcissism and desperation on these platforms is disgusting and disturbing. Big data and pedophiles love Facebook. ..."
Mar 22, 2021 | www.unz.com

L8917 , says: March 22, 2021 at 2:53 pm GMT • 2.5 days ago

Last week I did a web search for a quote by Goebbels concerning truth and found one regarding TheState and TheBigLie on TheJewishVirtualLibrary. After posting it to Fakebook, I was notified that the quote violated "community standards" and wouldn't be seen by anyone else (except the FBI, or local LEOs perhaps).

Being who I am, I posted the same quote with a link to where I found it [TheJewishVirtualLibrary] and was notified no one would see any of my posts for a week.

Again, being who I am, I posted a video from TheBabylonBee that illustrated the danger of likening everything to Nazis, and was notified of a month-long ban.

I then downloaded my data in two formats and deleted the account.

Living life stupid might be inclusive and entertaining, but there's too many options available to make ignorance enjoyable.

Jake , says: March 22, 2021 at 5:55 pm GMT • 2.4 days ago

...It is partially Brave New World with a dash of 1984 and a healthy helping of Mordor, all of which is brightened and made more alluring and addicting with Sexual Revolution.

Hockeyguy , says: March 22, 2021 at 6:35 pm GMT • 2.4 days ago

The "reality police" have infiltrated down to the lowest levels now to look for "new normal" violators anywhere. If CJ thinks he's a nobody, then I am a sub-sub-sub-nobody, yet I have had my user account suspended twice now at an obscure news aggregation website, Fark.com , for making comments that apparently constitute "Covid misinformation."

Once was when I commented on a story that stated that there is a need to vaccinate even those that have recovered from actually having Covid. I said something like, "Why would you need to vaccinate someone whose immune system is functioning properly and already did the job naturally?" Apparently, even mentioning that humans have an immune system is now verboten, and thus my comment was deleted and my account was suspended for 24 hours. The next time I was suspended was just over this past weekend when I commented on a story about someone ignoring covid rules.

I stated something to the effect that we should ALL be ignoring the public health "experts" who are petty tyrants. Well, they have now suspended my account for 72 hours again for "covid misinformation."

Despite being amused that my opinions are somehow "misinformation," it's certainly enraging that speaking plain common truth is becoming more and more difficult.

This will not end well.

bj0311 , says: March 23, 2021 at 1:47 am GMT • 2.1 days ago

I am pretty tired of people who use these antisocial media platforms complaining when these platforms do what they do by their very nature. They weren't set up to help us they were set up to enslave us. Get a clue, Farcebook and Twatter et al are not your friends!

Simon Tugmutton , says: March 23, 2021 at 7:26 am GMT • 1.8 days ago
@El Dato

...Remember when Eric Schmidt got his panties in a twist because some enterprising soul had done some digital digging into his private life?

steinbergfeldwitzcohen , says: March 23, 2021 at 7:34 am GMT • 1.8 days ago

All social media Big Tech platforms are SARPA surveillance programs that added some cool logo, a young captured jew type as Boss and some marketing to morons and lemmings. Absolute joke. The sheer narcissism and desperation on these platforms is disgusting and disturbing. Big data and pedophiles love Facebook.

[Mar 06, 2021] When I read "Brave New World" by Aldous Huxley I considered it an improbable fantasy. But it certainly does seem now that something of the kind is in our future

Mar 06, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

zeta , Mar 5 2021 16:34 utc | 10

@James joseph | Mar 5 2021 14:55 utc | 1

Given that we no longer trust the intentions of most public and private institutions, i am looking for signs of a new phenomenon, which i call "Fear of new developments in science or technology". ...due to the belief that said developments will only be used against us, either by the state or oligarchy. Anyone have thoughts on this?

When I read "Brave New World" by Aldous Huxley I considered it an improbable fantasy. But it certainly does seem now that something of the kind is in our future, if the "best people" have their way. Another good treatment of the subject is the short story "Welcome to the Monkey House" by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

[Mar 05, 2021] How Democracy Dies- Big Tech Becomes Big Brother - ZeroHedge

Mar 04, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Leni Friedman Valenta with Dr. Jiri Valenta via The Gatestone Institute,

"Digital giants have been playing an increasingly significant role in wider society... how well does this monopolism correlate with the public interest?," Russian President Vladimir Putin said on January 27, 2021.

"Where is the distinction between successful global businesses, sought-after services and big data consolidation on the one hand, and the efforts to rule society[...] by substituting legitimate democratic institutions, by restricting the natural right for people to decide how to live and what view to express freely on the other hand?"

Was Mr. Putin defending democracy? Hardly. What apparently worries him is that the Big Tech might gain the power to control society at the expense of his government.

What must be a nightmare for him -- as for many Americans -- is that the Tech giants were able to censor news favorable to Trump and then censor Trump himself . How could the U.S. do this to the president of a great and free country?

Putin made these comments at the Davos World Economic Forum, in which he and Chinese President Xi Jinping, sped on by the "Great Reset" of a fourth industrial revolution, used enlightened phrases to mask dark plans for nation states in a globalist New World Order. Thus did Xi caution attendees "to adapt to and guide globalization, cushion its negative impact, and deliver its benefits to all countries and all nations."

In March 2019, Putin signed a law "imposing penalties for Russian internet users caught spread 'fake news' and information that presents 'clear disrespect for society, government, state symbols the constitution and government institutions.'" Punishments got even heavier with new laws in December.

Meanwhile, opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been sentenced to prison for more than three years (with a year off for time served), in part because he revealed photos of a lavish Russian palace allegedly belonging to Putin on the coast of the Black Sea. Its accouterments supposedly include an $824 toilet brush . Many of the thousands of people protesting Navalny's imprisonment have since been protesting Putin by waving gold-painted toilet brushes.

How nice that American Big Tech companies is pushing democracy in Russia -- even while it is denying it at home. Do you notice how many leaders in Europe have risen to condemn censorship in America even though many in Europe are censoring their citizens as well, and are not exactly fans of the person who was being censored, former President Donald J. Trump? Like Putin, they probably do not want Big Tech competing with their governments, either.

The power-sharing of the U.S. Federal government with Big Tech appears a recipe for unharnessed power and corruption. Navalny caught on right away, saying:

"This precedent will be exploited by the enemies of freedom of speech around the world. In Russia as well. Every time when they need to silence someone, they will say: 'this is just common practice, even Trump got blocked on Twitter.'"

What watchdog, if any, is now restraining Big Tech in America? It has become quite clear that Big Tech's censorship may well have cost Trump the election, even if one ultimately finds that election fraud did not.

Big Tech took it upon itself to censor an exposé -- published by the New York Post on October 24, 2020, as well as follow-up exposés -- reporting that Hunter Biden, Joe Biden's son, had sold his influence to China and Ukraine, and had raked in millions for the family.

The Media Research Center (MRC) found that "One of every six Biden voters we surveyed (17%) said they would have abandoned the Democratic candidate had they known the facts about one or more of these news stories". That information might well have changed the outcome in all six of the swing states Biden reportedly won.

Last August, Twitter also undertook censoring the trailer of an explosive documentary entitled " The Plot Against the President. " The film, narrated by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) with commentary by leading members of the Republican Party, exposes leading members of the Democratic Party and their deep state allies, many of whom knowingly used phony evidence to frame President Trump and some in his circle to try convince Americans that he and his campaign had colluded with the Russian government to win the 2016 election.

The film claims, using with recently declassified information, that President Barack Obama, as well Hillary Clinton , were involved in an almost four-year attempted coup incomparably more undemocratic than any riot at the Capital Building on January 6.

Rep. Devin Nunes, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, claimed in August 2020 that Biden also knew of the ongoing efforts to unseat Trump. Nevertheless, Trump did not target them, perhaps to avoid dividing the country even further.

According to the Washington Times , the Twitter account of the movie, which debuted in October 2020, attracted 30,000 followers . Twitter blacklisted it for a day, but after a public uproar, put the popular documentary back. Our question is: How many blacklistings did Twitter not put back?

The January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol was a pivotal event for Trump and the Republican Party. Prior to January 6, President Trump had offered to deploy 10,000 troops to the capitol, according to his former Chief-of-Staff Mark Meadows. The Pentagon and the Department of Justice had also offered help but were also reportedly turned down by the US Capitol Police The problem, apparently, was " optics" -- about a Capitol now surrounded by barbed wire and thousands of troops, which the current Administration now seems to like .

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for further details about the event were also rejected -- it is not clear by whom. It is ridiculous, therefore, for anyone to frame the riots, ugly as they were, as a seditious "insurrection," particularly in light of what appears to be a massive security failure that could have averted the violence. One thing is certain: the timing of the event could not have been more perfect for opposition groups, which is probably why it had been planned for weeks before January 6.

What these efforts and the media did achieve was an end to all attempts to ascertain election fraud at a time when Vice President Mike Pence was counting Electoral College ballots, and allowing speeches from those supporting that claim. Some politicians even called for the resignation of Senators Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley, and referred them to the ethics committee for even suggesting an election audit of battleground states, despite questions having been asked -- with no objections -- concerning the results of the 2000, 2004 and 2016 presidential elections.

Ultimately, the result of the latest "witch hunt" against President Trump, as it has been called , was a contrived impeachment attempt to bar Trump from a future presidential bid -- a kangaroo court devoid of due process, hearings, witnesses, and evidence. The prosecution, however, was undeniably eloquent in evoking "democracy" for a totally undemocratic procedure that justly resulted in Trump's acquittal.

Meanwhile, Facebook and Twitter banned Trump and some of his supporters from their cyber domains. An alternative social media platform, Parler, was banned from the Apple and Google app stores, and then completely closed down by Amazon .

Meanwhile, mainstream social media platforms were reportedly used to rally and organize carry out riots in American cities last year. No one was penalized.

Do not, however, expect such slackness now. According to Fox News:

"People like Obama-era CIA Director John Brennan and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., have made various public statements labeling Republicans as extremists -- with Ocasio-Cortez claiming the GOP has 'white supremacist sympathizers' within its ranks, and Brennan claiming 'domestic violent extremists' in the form of far-right supporters of President Trump are more dangerous than Al Qaeda."

Columnist and radio host Jeffrey Kuhner warns that a new bill, H.R. 350, "is the liberals' equivalent of the Patriot Act redux. This time, however, it is not aimed at Islamic jihadists. Rather, it directly targets Trump patriots." Kuhner writes that the bill "has the full backing of the Democratic congressional leadership, the Biden administration... Big Media and Big Tech."

"The bill empowers the Deep State to monitor, surveil and spy on American citizens' social media accounts, phone calls, political meetings and even infiltrate pro-Trump or 'Stop the Steal' rallies.

"Conservatives who are deemed potentially 'seditious' or 'treasonous' can be arrested and jailed, fined and/or lose their employment. The goal is simple: to crush all dissent to the Biden regime."

Moreover, last month the new Secretary of Defense, Lloyd Austin, ordered a "stand down "of the entire military for 60 days, "so each service, each command and each unit can have a deeper conversation about this issue [extremism]." Normally stand downs last only a few hours or days and do not involve the entire military. Austin, in addition, has pledged to "rid our ranks of racists and extremists."

These are words that can be applied to anyone dreamed up, including Trump supporters, and based, of course, on nothing but propaganda.

Austin's plan is therefore needless, divisive and dangerous, considering the foreign dangers now circling their prey. This punishment of the regime's "foes" makes one wonder what is next. Are we already marching in lockstep with Russia and China? The way to unite and strengthen the United States is not through suppression and punishment but through political power with checks and balances, a free press and closer adherence to the Constitution.

But here, again, there seems to be. a problem. The Federalist wrote in July:

"According to a new Quillette survey released last month, 70 percent of self-identifying liberals want to rewrite the U.S. Constitution 'to a new Americans constitution that better reflects our diversity as a people.'"

Oh, so that is what we lack: diversity!

What can Americans Do? We are presently at a tipping point in America. Communist China is working hard and is focused on global domination; we are just messing around. In an increasingly digital world, the war against infringements on our freedoms most probably needs to be fought largely in the digital and cyber-space. That is why ending censorship in both the traditional and social media is such an important priority. First, break up the Big Tech companies. Let them become the utilities they originally claimed to be, or else be liable to lawsuits as other publishers are.

We do take some comfort that whereas dictatorships in authoritarian countries such as China and Russia is vertical -- from the top down -- in America, the central government shares power with the states from the bottom up, and with powers separated: the executive, the judiciary and the legislative. Fortunately, governors such as Ron DeSantis in Florida, Greg Abbott in Texas and Kevin Stitt in Oklahoma are now moving legislatively to counter federal laws that may have adverse effects on freedom of speech, jobs, election integrity, the energy industry, the first or second amendments and general constitutional rights.

This does not speak, however, to the major issue here -- that democracy cannot survive in a country where a few technocrats and oligarchs can choose to deny access to information or platforms to candidates running for office . It is simply unacceptable that they alone -- unelected, unappointed, untransparent and unaccountable -- can deem what is "harmful" to society. The job now for all of us is to prevent the United States from slowly becoming a full-blown tyranny.


holdbuysell 21 hours ago

The irony of Apple and the '1984' commercial they ran couldn't be more resounding.

Max21c 12 hours ago (Edited) remove link

The power-sharing of the U.S. Federal government with Big Tech appears a recipe for unharnessed power and corruption ...

This is nothing new. It's just wider spread and they're more blatant and open about their secret police criminality, war crimes against civilians and oppression.

The terrorists and tyrants in the CIA, FBI, military secret police have always created & abused secret police powers to rule over America, rob & cheat people, take other people's property & intellectual works & intellectual property, sick the secret police on innocent American civilians, engage in political persecution of innocent American civilians, engage in economic warfare & industrial espionage, enrich & empower themselves and their kind, and essentially wage a war of persecution & oppression & thievery against targeted American civilians.

BDB 20 hours ago (Edited) remove link

We never had a democracy.

When elections are a media processes and presidents are appointed by central bankers and not elected? Using the ideology of democracy( " rule by the people") is another way govt belittles us.

The democracy dogma is another mind control meme for power over others.

https://notpublicaddress.wordpress.com/2021/02/22/the-uns-pseudo-pandemic-has-hit-the-rocks/

GoGiveCrypto 21 hours ago

Big Tech (Corporations) and Big Brother (Government) are joined by a revolving door of jobs and corruption already. There is no becomes. It has already became. Like since before I was born.

Ranger4564 15 hours ago

There is no separation, and there really is no door, it's the same damn organization, just different outfits and an alias to hide the identity.

Think of it as the subsidiary of a subsidiary of a holding company that is owned by a venture capitalist, that is controlled by the cabal.

In fact, most companies people think are independent corporations are actually owned by the cabal in such a structure. I don't even need to fabricate this.

JohnGaltsChild 12 hours ago remove link

Big tech + Banks = Slavery

OldNewB 13 hours ago

Game over for freedom. When corporations take over and have more power than your own elected government, greed and power wins out over freedom. America sold itself to the highest bidder.

Max21c 12 hours ago

That's because the crazy people from the intelligence community and secret police community have basically completely taken over after 911 with the willing collaboration of the puppet press, puppet journalists, and puppet judges & puppet political class... and they've established what is openly & blatantly a puppet government.

Also note that they lost in Hong Kong and got beat badly by a Bus Driver in Venezuela. And they're being routed and defeated and outclassed and out maneuvered all over the globe.

[Feb 27, 2021] Cancel Culture is a Dress Rehearsal for Mass Murder

Feb 27, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

Dogon Priest , Feb 26 2021 16:50 utc | 12

Interesting

Cancel Culture is a Dress Rehearsal for Mass Murder | Stefan Molyneux
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=9L0dPKpfHRA

Jackrabbit , Feb 26 2021 21:26 utc | 20

Dogon Priest @Feb26 16:50 #12

Cancel Culture is a Dress Rehearsal for Mass Murder

I simply coined it the new book-burning.

!!

[Feb 25, 2021] Peace is Forever War

Feb 25, 2021 | www.unz.com

Peace is Forever War

Now let's move to another oracle, a self-described expert of what in the Beltway is known as the "Greater Middle East": Robert Kagan, co-founder of PNAC, certified warmongering neo-con, and one-half of the famous Kaganate of Nulands – as the joke went across Eurasia – side by side with his wife, notorious Maidan cookie distributor Victoria "F**k the EU" Nuland, who's about to re-enter government as part of the Biden-Harris administration.

Kagan is back pontificating in – where else – Foreign Affairs, which published his latest superpower manifesto . That's where we find this absolute pearl:

That Americans refer to the relatively low-cost military involvements in Afghanistan and Iraq as "forever wars" is just the latest example of their intolerance for the messy and unending business of preserving a general peace and acting to forestall threats. In both cases, Americans had one foot out the door the moment they entered, which hampered their ability to gain control of difficult situations.

So let's get this straight. The multi-trillion dollar Forever Wars are "relatively low-cost"; tell that to the multitudes suffering the Via Crucis of US crumbling infrastructure and appalling standards in health and education. If you don't support the Forever Wars – absolutely necessary to preserve the "liberal world order" – you are "intolerant".

"Preserving a general peace" does not even qualify as a joke, coming from someone absolutely clueless about realities on the ground. As for what the Beltway defines as "vibrant civil society" in Afghanistan, that in reality revolves around millennia-old tribal custom codes: it has nothing to do with some neocon/woke crossover. Moreover, Afghanistan's GDP – after so much American "help" – remains even lower than Saudi-bombed Yemen's.

Exceptionalistan will not leave Afghanistan. A deadline of May 1st was negotiated in Doha last year for the US/NATO to remove all troops. That's not gonna happen.

The spin is already turbocharged: the Deep State handlers of Joe "Crash Test Dummy" Biden will not respect the deadline. Everyone familiar with the New Great Game on steroids across Eurasia knows why: a strategic lily pad must be maintained at the intersection of Central and South Asia to help closely monitor – what else – Brzezinski's worst nightmare: the Russia-China strategic partnership.

As it stands we have 2,500 Pentagon + 7,000 NATO troops + a whole lot of "contractors" in Afghanistan. The spin is that they can't leave because the Taliban – which de facto control from 52% to as much as 70% of the whole tribal territory – will take over.

To see, in detail, how this whole sorry saga started, non-oracle skeptics could do worse than check Volume 3 of my Asia Times archives: Forever Wars: Afghanistan-Iraq, part 1 (2001-2004) . Part 2 will be out soon. Here they will find how the multi-trillion dollar Forever Wars – so essential to "preserve the peace" – actually developed on the ground, in total contrast to the official imperial narrative influenced, and defended, by Kagan.

With oracles like these, the US definitely does not need enemies.

Sirius , says: February 22, 2021 at 7:11 pm GMT • 3.1 days ago

The multi-trillion dollar Forever Wars are "relatively low-cost"; tell that to the multitudes suffering the Via Crucis of US crumbling infrastructure and appalling standards in health and education

Spot on. It's amazing that anyone gives voice to Kagan's lack of credibility whatsoever. That Foreign Affairs does says more about its own unreliability as a source of valuable opinion. But apparently the "Forever Wars" depiction is bothering the neo-con Zionists, so we can expect a lot more propaganda from them or worse, false flag attacks to revive their awful agenda.

[Feb 25, 2021] The West becomes more Stassi-like daily

Feb 25, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

Karl Sanchez , Feb 24 2021 19:48 utc | 29

The West becomes more Stassi-like daily ...

This was predictable given the ever decreasing returns for the Empires as they get hollowed out by their parasitic financial systems. Somehow, I doubt Orwell would be at all surprised.


Norwegian , Feb 25 2021 6:30 utc | 69

@vetinLA | Feb 24 2021 20:57 utc | 42

Who needs outright censorship when you can just willy-nilly change a words meaning? Or, is that just another form of censorship?

Yes, I am sure you have read 1984 where the Ministry of Truth took great pride in constantly issuion new revision of the official dictionary, each issue thinner than the previous one. This is what is going on now, in addition to change the meaning of words asyou rightly point out. In my country they have also changed the names of provinces and eliminated counties just to make people disorientated and confused, thus easy to control.
ak74 , Feb 25 2021 4:32 utc | 65
Do not undermine faith in the NATO alliance and its stability.

Do not amplify narratives that are aligned with the Russian government.

Do not undermine faith in the NATO alliance and its stability.

Everyone got that now?

Alan MacLeod actually tweeted about this:

"This is not a joke. Twitter has deleted dozens of account for the crime of 'undermining faith in the NATO alliance.'"

https://twitter.com/AlanRMacLeod/status/1364548110521876480

Undermining faith in the North American Terrorist Organization (NATO) is a Thought Crime of the highest order!

The punishment for this crime is being forced to watch a conga line of Anglo-American media mouthpieces blather about whatever is their Moral Outrage of the Month--Clockwork Orange style.

Welcome to the United States of Oceania.

ak74 , Feb 25 2021 4:53 utc | 66
More from Alan MacLeod about Twitter's censorship:

Twitter Deletes Dozens of Russian Accounts for "Undermining Faith in NATO"
https://www.mintpressnews.com/twitter-deletes-accounts-for-undermining-faith-in-nato/275641/

[Feb 15, 2021] Institutions based on distrust and fear usually do not last. That's why fascist states eventually collapse

Feb 15, 2021 | www.unz.com

Richard B , says: February 14, 2021 at 7:44 am GMT • 8.5 hours ago

...Leaving that question aside

"So settling on this penny-ante, trivial bullshit -- tattling, hall monitoring, speech policing: all in the most anti-intellectual, adolescent and primitive ways -- is all they have. It's all they are. It's why they have fully earned the contempt and distrust in which the public holds them."

It's also why the institutions they and those who think like them control won't last. With social institutions come problems, with problems comes problem-solving, with problem-solving comes a set of skills that these child-people do not have. Unfortunately, neither do a lot of people who complain about them. They're all deposits of Dunning-Kruger Nation.

Not to underestimate the damage they can do, especially since it seems to be the only thing they're capable of, but the fact is, the best they'll ever manage is a Pyrrhic Victory. So, let's call this The Pyrrhic Victory of Dunning-Kruger Nation .

John Hagan , says: Website February 14, 2021 at 1:13 pm GMT • 3.0 hours ago

I am continually amazed that Americans miss the obvious. The answer to bigotry is satire of that same bigotry. From Shakespeare onwards satire was the weapon that most angered and frightened the bigots. George Carlin and today Jimmy Dore were and are satirists.

[Feb 14, 2021] They simply substituting stuff, narrowing choice and freedoms, while pretending to be expanding them.

Feb 14, 2021 | www.unz.com

Rahan , says: February 14, 2021 at 7:31 am GMT • 8.7 hours ago

Many people feel like this speech police apparatus has been implemented overnight. They feel that we went from being a relatively free society, to a society where people are jailed for memes and hunted down by journalists in private chat rooms for saying banned words.

On a larger scale, this substitution is taking place via a process of moving from "constraints A" to "constraints B", with an intermediate period of loosening of constraints. A temporary "near total freedom", which peaked circa 2000 – 2010 mostly, before going into decline.

As was with race. At first, one was supposed to view people as individuals, and view them in a color-blind manner. Today, viewing people as individuals in a color-blind manner is already defined as "racist" by GloboHomo, and we're back to mandatory viewing of people through a racial group filter, but not the old "filter A", but a new "filter B".

Race used to be a "social construct", as did gender, but now both are again being presented as manifestations of a transcendental reality, only a redefined one.

Like with sexuality. Everybody screwing everybody turned out to be a temporary transition from "fascism A" to "fascism B", and now this transition is over and there are even more rules and traps in the mating ritual, than back in the 19th century.

And gender and fetish-wise, people are now "born this way", sometimes "into the wrong body", as society has regressed all the way to bronze-age metaphysics. But use modern tech to enforce them.

Same with censorship. For a number of decades there was less and less censorship, in the west, then this temporary period of freedom peaked, and now it's also all regressing back to 19th century levels of censorship, but through a new filter, applied by the new hidden elites.

Another excellent gas-lighting misdirection by GloboHomo -- those normal liberals who want back the political and lifestyle freedoms of the 1990s are "the fascists". Bravo. Just like every time urban blacks with illegal pistols chimpout, this means it's all the fault of white peasants with legal rifles.

The autogenophylia mental-beakdown-promoting sissy hypno porn of today also works like this. First it promises "infinite pleasure and freedom" by deconstructing the vulnerable user's current personality, and then after this transitional freedom from restrictions and resulting waves of dopamine, starts building up forcefully new structures, even more rigid than the initial ones, thus producing a new artificial personality. Thus a mostly functional depressed autist is first dismantled, and then reconstructed by a computer program into a psycho who maintains a permanent manic phase through relentless use of drugs and dildo riding, and if during the inevitable depressive crash he off himself -- then this is simply proof how fascist this cruel world is. Kek.

**

The larger misdirection: who are the elites and what is the system? Apparently the institutional, corporate, creative, academic, and media components of the system are all constantly fighting the system. Neither Harvard, nor Google, nor Parliament, nor ministers, nor governors, nor CNN, nor NYT, nor CNBC, nor the mayor, nor the chief of FBI are "the system, no, they are all in fact "fighting the system". Who is them this mysterious system? Why, it's the white provincial. He is "the system" somehow, and everything is his fault. And after you finally put this filthy kulak in his place (or "deprogram" him from his fascism), then the injustices and inefficiencies of life will evaporate.

The larger transitional freedom phase: In a sense WWI was the culmination of the dismantling of the old "king-and-aristocracy" based world order. This was followed by a period in which "all sane people" promoted democracy based on transparency of institutions, rotation of elites through fair elections, freedom of speech, all that jazz. Now, however, a new layer of unelected elites has taken the place of the old pre-WWI unelected elites, with all that entails. The 20th century was to a large extent a larger transitional phase of temporary freedom from "rigidity A" to "rigidity B", with many smaller cycles taking places, especially after WWII.

**

Everyone is on constant alert already, and speaking out against these people just draws their attention. They are soulless monsters, fixated on power. People who have accomplished nothing in their lives, these failed novelists, failed poets, failed comedians, failed whatevers are, via this tattletale mercenary work, able to exercise the power to destroy the lives of people who have accomplished things.

Back in Soviet times if one is a dissident this is impossible, thus one is either a) clinically insane, or b) a foreign agent, or c) a domestic terrorist. At certain times it was more fashionable to label people foreign agents, in others -- insane psychos.

To this day people get lost in the cloud of bullshit how "private censorship" is OK and "state censorship" isn't (although in places like the UK and Canada the distinction is already mostly imaginary). Like with any cloud of bullshit, you just take a step back and look at the facts, and do not allow GloboHomo to change definitions and descriptions.

You take a step back, and from outside the cloud of bullshit you ask: "Can a person tell off-color jokes and state their political or religious values in this country without being censored and punished? Yes or no? No but no if. Yes or no?" If the answer is yes, then this is a free society. If the answer is no, then this is not a free society, and it doesn't matter in the least what mechanisms the system uses to achieve this un-freedom–"private" institutions or "state" institutions, "hired bullies", or "activist volunteers".

Lesson 1: private companies above a certain size become political actors. They should be treated as such. Possibly defined by a mix of variable including annual profits, budget, reach, direct and indirect employee number. Those definitions should be anchored by the state and reviewed say once a decade.
Lesson 2: private companies have the right to enforce dress, speech, and behavior codes inside their offices, within reason. They cannot have the right to enforce the same when their workers are not at work, and certainly can't be allowed to punish workers for how they dressed or talked when not at work.
Lesson 2a: private companies should have the state-protected right to refuse service in non-essentials (who to bake a cake for), but not have the right to refuse essentials (staple foods, electricity, water, banking). What is essential and non-essential should be decided via public debate and anchored to specific rules about once a decade.
Lesson 3: the right to freely expressing political opinion must be recognized as a basic human right protected by national and international law. It is not a privilege, it is a right. If it is not a right, then this is not a democracy, or even a modern civilization, but actual neo-feudalism.

**

Jesters like Trump and Farage, God bless them, forced the new system to stop with the pretense, and shift from the slow boil to high speed, so that every sane person could finally also stop pretending and accept what is taking place.

Now the new elites-not elites finally stopped also pretending that the masses are "citizens" and began treating them for real like "dumb filthy serfs".

Did you really think you can just simply vote any way you want to?
Did you really think you can just simply say what you want to say?
Did you really think you can just simply have freedom of faith and morals?
Did you really think you can just simply protest in front of Parliament?
Did you really think that constitutional mechanisms will simply remain functional?
Did you really think the media will just simply be neutral and truthful?
Did you really think you can just simply tell any joke you want?
Did you really think you can just simply remain middle class with normal incomes and private property?
Did you really think the police will just simply protect you from looters and arsonists?
Did you really think you can just simply defend yourself if the police doesn't interfere?
Did you really think you can just simply decide what is democratic and what isn't and what state institutions can and can't do?
Did you really think you can just simply decide what is and what isn't a monopoly, and what corporations can and can't do?
Did you really think you can just simply get to have a say in how much money we'll print and which businesses get to be propped up?
Did you really think you can just simply have a say in what gets taught in schools?
Did you really think you can just simply have your kids not snitch on you to the authorities?
Did you really think you can just simply decide which medications to take and which not to take?

**

They're going big time now. This is no longer just political censorship. Now, you can be censored for "disinformation," which means "disagreeing with the media at all."

This moving of goalposts and renaming things is a very important part of GloboHomo's instrumentarium.

Moving goalposts : (especially in terms of various "minorities") from "we are totally like you let us have equal rights" to "you're the pathological ones, now we get to control your life".
Changing names and meanings : especially terms like "fascism", "racism", "terrorism", "hate", "radical", "rape", "abuse" and such, and constant fluidity of what these terms mean is not harmless, far from it.

Because once the branders brand you as one of those, the system reacts as a whole to punish you. Once definitions are not anchored, but constantly reinterpreted by the modern equivalent of self-appointed "Old Testament judges", you've just lost your civilization. They'll even define what is a political opinion or religious belief and what is "unhinged hate", and the system will react to you according to their definition.

Lesson: any sane society must have a) anchored major goalposts that can only be changed through referendum; b) must have language purity rules and laws that do not allow definitions to be changed willy-nilly, and those who do are shamed and fined. Any change in definition must be debated and approved by some body such as a national academy of science.

The agenda is to somehow silence half of the population of the United States. They obviously can't single them all out for humiliation, professional destruction and prison, so they are going to freeze targets, personalize them, and make examples of them. This is called "a chilling effect," and it is the current core plan of the ruling class to maintain control over a population that views them as illegitimate masters.

Hopefully this produces the effect of them being increasingly seen as just "a dangerous part of life", a permanent external irritant that exists on the spectrum from "annoying" to "lethal". Thus in turn means a total loss of any moral authority they may have wielded even just 5 years ago, so that's go.

Let's hope they have not succeeded in poisoning culture to the extent of the inevitable reaction backlash actually being fashy.

These journalists are not simply tools of the ruling elite, enforcers of a bizarre set of ever-shifting rules about what you are allowed to think, and they are not simply anti-intellectual witch-hunters lashing out at things they can't hope to understand. It is deeper than that. These odious fiends are fundamentally destroyers of creativity. They seek to smash the imaginative spiritual energy inside of men, that piece of God that was breathed into us.

This is also why you matter, Mr. Wang Lin. Your stuff is so real it instantly becomes alive, and becomes part of the noosphere. Whereas they are servant of death and cannot create. On a wider scale, this is why every institution they touch collapses. They cannot create their own institutions -- they can merely infiltrate existing ones and kill them from the inside.
On a more narrow scale, this is what they do with the media environment as well.

Which is also why the new dopamine freedoms they promote come at the expense of older traditional liberties. Again, it's a cannibalizing effect. They are not creating additional stuff. They simply substituting stuff, narrowing choice and freedoms, while pretending to be expanding them.

Lesson 1: Freedoms -- when you promote certain freedoms, do they expand the existing pool or liberties, or do they come at the price of extinguishing older liberties. If the new freedoms you promote expand the overall pool of liberties, you are helping the traditional democratic socium survive and evolve. If the new freedoms you promote come at the price of extinguishing older liberties, then you are a destroyer who pretends to be a creator.

Lesson 2: Institutions -- if when promoting new rights, freedoms, and identities, you are capable of building new institutions for them, and these institutions mesh in a positive manner with the pre-existing institutions of your society -- you are a builder and a force for good. If, however, you an only infiltrate and overtake already existing institutions in order to promote your new rights, freedoms, and identities, or your attempts to build new institutions come into conflict with preexisting ones -- you are a destroyer.

Do you add, or do you subtract? Did life become more free or less free because of your actions? Do you build or do you destroy? Are you a dopamine-addicted slave of chaos, or are you capable of enjoying the pleasures of life while also being a builder?

**

Anyway, thank you for doing what you do, Mr. Wang Lin.

Back when in the days of your high-octane performance art persona that attempted to counteract through shock-humor the overtone window hijacking by GloboHomo, the humorless malignant drama whores couldn't tell when you're serious and when not, or perhaps they pretended to not being able to tell.

Today, with the outrageous clownish persona toned down into mildly edgy deadpan mode, the saner adults start not being able to tell what's what.

But those of us who can tell salute you.

[Feb 14, 2021] the Empire civilisation is Franco-German ice with some Arabic Latino input. The gene pool and common name history clearly show the English of the UK, the Europeans and the US are one civilisation. Orwell called it Oceania.

Feb 14, 2021 | www.unz.com

,

Digital Samizdat , says: February 11, 2021 at 11:48 am GMT • 3.1 days ago
@BlackFlag

Maybe the US and EU should be viewed as a unified block. After all, they share the same ideology.

Exactly. Both the EU and the US are puppets of the same globalist hidden hand.

[Feb 05, 2021] The NYT readership wasn't ever that big, the subscription base was rarely much over a million, but NYT has the power to set the agenda and it all that matters

Feb 05, 2021 | www.ineteconomics.org

Chris Hedges:

If you go back and look at manufacturing consent, Chomsky and Ed Herman's great work on the press, you see that the old paradigm no longer functions, that in the digital age where there are a multiplicity of sources, the media has essentially siloed itself. It doesn't seek with the old monopolies. Remember we used to have just one major network that the power of the New York Times and I know because I worked for The Times for 15 years, was not the readership, the readership wasn't ever that big, the subscription base was rarely much over a million, but it was the power to set the agenda so that when I was overseas, all of the networks, now these were the big kind of media stars that appeared on CBS or NBC, would actually come and knock on my hotel room at night and ask me what it was I was filing the next morning because they knew their editors would then send them out to do a story based on what I had reported.

That was the power of the New York Times. All of that's gone and it's been replaced by partisan divides and it has transformed publications like The New York Times into partisan outlets. The Pew Research Center did a poll last summer where they polled readers and viewers so 91% of the people who read The New York Times identify as supporters of the Democratic party, that's 87% for national public radio, 94, 95%, I can't remember, for MSNBC. Then you have the other side of the divide where 95% of the people who watch Fox news, I hate combining Fox with the word news, identify as supporters of the Republican party. That has been commercially successful and even politically successful because on all of the major issues, trade deals, endless war, wholesale surveillance, austerity programs.

[Feb 05, 2021] Calling For An American Ministry Of Truth - The US Media's Dystopian 2021 - ZeroHedge

Notable quotes:
"... The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation. These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from from ordinary hypocrisy. They are deliberate exercises in doublethink. ..."
"... What the self-styled newspaper of record calls "misguided beliefs" are indisputable facts important for everyone to know. ..."
"... A real "national reality crisis" exists because of Big Government in cahoots with Big Media – like the Times -- serving privileged interests exclusively at the expense of most others. ..."
"... "To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which canceled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it (…) To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality“ - George Orwell ..."
Feb 05, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

The New York Times never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity for truth-telling as it should be.

It's a notion long ago abandoned in deference to providing press agent services for powerful interests.

At the same time, the Times finds new ways to disgrace itself.

Calling for a US Ministry of Truth headed by a "reality czar" sounds ominously like what Orwell described in his dystopian 1984 novel that's no longer fiction, saying:

The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation. These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from from ordinary hypocrisy. They are deliberate exercises in doublethink.

Along with Big Brother mass surveillance and newspeak, Orwell's Ministry of Truth was all about controlling the message, eliminating whatever conflicts with it, memory holes used for this purpose. The Times and other US major media operate this way now -- a collective ministry of truth as described above. Featuring the official narrative exclusively, alternative views are filtered out and suppressed, free and open expression banned in their reports.

In 1984 , unnwanted material went down memory holes to "be whirled away (in) enormous furnaces devoured by the flames," said Orwell, adding:

"(T)here were the directing brains who co-ordinated the whole effort and laid down the lines of policy which made it necessary that this fragment of the past should be preserved, that one falsified, and the other rubbed out of existence."

In the US and West, no Orwell-style memory hole is needed, no furnaces, no ceremonial book-burnings. Big Media in cahoots with diabolical government officials censor and eliminate truth-telling on what's vital for everyone to know. What Times fake news called a US "reality crisis" amounts to urging greater state-sponsored censorship than already.

What it called "the scourge of hoaxes, lies and delusions" are hard truths about US imperial wars, hazardous covid vaccines to be shunned, stolen Election 2020, unelected/cognitively impaired Biden unable to serve in any public capacity, the anti-Trump Jan. 6 Capitol Hill false flag, and other cutting-edge issues. What the self-styled newspaper of record calls "misguided beliefs" are indisputable facts important for everyone to know.

A real "national reality crisis" exists because of Big Government in cahoots with Big Media – like the Times -- serving privileged interests exclusively at the expense of most others.

As a collective lying machine, truth-telling is their moral enemy, what they're hellbent for eliminating in whatever form it shows up. In today's America, Big Brother mass surveillance, police state control, and ministry of truth Big Lies are part of the national fabric. That's the ugly reality suppressed by the Times and other Big Media. The nation I grew up in long ago no longer exists. Growing tyranny heading toward becoming full-blown replaced it. That's the ugly reality establishment media like the Times suppress - to their disgrace.

Plus Size Model 1 hour ago (Edited)

Representative Gillett, commenting on the Creel Bureau (WWI propaganda Committee responsible for selling the war to the public):

That is the great danger of such a bureau as this, because we must all admit that if any administration has in its power a Bureau of Public Information, as it is called, but really an advertising bureau, a propaganda bureau, a bureau of publicity, to exploit the various acts and desperations of the Government, it is a very dangerous thing in a Republic; because, if used in a partisan spirit or for partisan advantage of the administration ,it has tremendous power, and in ordinary peace-time I do not think any party or any administration would justify or approve it.

U.S. Congressional Record 65th Congress, 2nd Session, P. 7915

Umh

There was a time, long ago when I considered myself a liberal. I don't think I changed very much, a bit of real world experience perhaps. Then the leftists changed the meaning of liberal. These people don't even have a clue what they are setting up.

JoePesci

I am a liberal too. An SF burning man attending acid loving atheist, drive my gf to PP, South America backpacking peace loving hippie and i hate these fvcking people. They are fascists and not in the slight bit liberal. They are the same warmongering, corporatist, racist, hypocrites that were neocons under george bush. The very same, just switched parties

balz

If you enjoyed 1984, try reading We by Yevgeny Zamyatin, which was written in 1920 (first book banned by the USSR!) and which Orwell reviewed a couple of years before writing 1984. The book also inspired Ayn Rand.

SilverCoinLover

Agreed! A fantastic book, written even before Huxley's Brave New World.

I remember reading it in high school in the 1970s, still have a copy.

Im4truth4all

It takes no genius to see the parallels between George Orwell's "1984" and the democrat/marxists and its agents. Their philosophy was so accurately described by George Orwell and is as follows:

"To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which canceled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it (…) To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality“ - George Orwell

[Feb 02, 2021] Ministry of Truth returns in new incarnation: NYT Calls For Biden To Appoint "Reality Czar" To Fight Misinformation by Paul Joseph Watson

Notable quotes:
"... In the book, the Ministry of Truth decides what is "truth" in Oceania no matter what the actual truth may be, and exercises this monopoly over reality by falsifying the nature of historical events. ..."
"... "truth" becomes whatever the government-approved version of events is in that moment. ..."
"... What the "experts" cited by the New York Times are calling far and what Orwell portrayed in his book are so similar, even Kevin Roose admits, "It sounds a little dystopian." ..."
"... the most harmful "conspiracy theories," – such as Saddam Hussein's non-existent WMD's and supporting "freedom fighters" who were actually jihadists in Libya and Syria – are always exclusively peddled by the mainstream media. ..."
"... The corporate press pushing these two whoppers created the consensus for war that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people and an international migrant crisis. ..."
"... New limited edition merch now available! Click here . In the age of mass Silicon Valley censorship It is crucial that we stay in touch. I need you to sign up for my free newsletter here . Support my sponsor – Turbo Force – a supercharged boost of clean energy without the comedown. Also, I urgently need your financial support here . ..."
"... "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act" - George Orwell ..."
"... they can't sell what they're peddling so they have to control the narrative so they can push out propaganda to terrorize the citizens. ..."
"... JFK: For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence--on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. ..."
Feb 02, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Paul Joseph Watson via Summit News,

The New York Times has amplified claims by "experts" who are calling for Joe Biden to appoint a "reality czar," prompting critics to compare the idea to the Ministry of Truth in George Orwell's 1984.

In an article entitled 'How the Biden Administration Can Help Solve Our Reality Crisis', the NYT's Kevin Roose cites "experts" who are calling on "the Biden administration put together a cross-agency task force to tackle disinformation and domestic extremism, which would be led by something like a "reality czar."

The job of this "reality czar" would be to head up "a centralized task force could coordinate a single, strategic response" to things like COVID-related and election fraud "conspiracy theories."

"This task force could also meet regularly with tech platforms, and push for structural changes that could help those companies tackle their own extremism and misinformation problems. (For example, it could formulate "safe harbor" exemptions that would allow platforms to share data about QAnon and other conspiracy theory communities with researchers and government agencies without running afoul of privacy laws.) And it could become the tip of the spear for the federal government's response to the reality crisis," states the article.

"Ah, the Ministry of Truth. I've been waiting for this one," responded Raheem Kassam.

While the Orwell comparison has become something of a cliché, in this instance its the best available. In the book, the Ministry of Truth decides what is "truth" in Oceania no matter what the actual truth may be, and exercises this monopoly over reality by falsifying the nature of historical events.

The Ministry of Truth also uses this power monopoly to redefine the very word "truth" under the rubric of Newspeak, so "truth" becomes whatever the government-approved version of events is in that moment.

What the "experts" cited by the New York Times are calling far and what Orwell portrayed in his book are so similar, even Kevin Roose admits, "It sounds a little dystopian."

But if "conspiracy theories" really do pose a deadly threat to society, who is responsible for pushing the most egregious disinformation?

As we have exhaustively documented – the most harmful "conspiracy theories," – such as Saddam Hussein's non-existent WMD's and supporting "freedom fighters" who were actually jihadists in Libya and Syria – are always exclusively peddled by the mainstream media.

The corporate press pushing these two whoppers created the consensus for war that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people and an international migrant crisis.

The New York Times was one of the most prominent outlets that amplified both these damaging deceptions and yet they faced no consequences whatsoever. Such lies are also far more harmful to society because mainstream media networks have the biggest platforms, they are amplified by rigged social media platforms, and they share a common consensus narrative with each other, meaning there is almost no room for questioning or debate.

If there really was a truly independent "reality czar," the media would be big trouble because its entire raison d'être is predicated around distorting reality.

* * *

New limited edition merch now available! Click here . In the age of mass Silicon Valley censorship It is crucial that we stay in touch. I need you to sign up for my free newsletter here . Support my sponsor – Turbo Force – a supercharged boost of clean energy without the comedown. Also, I urgently need your financial support here .


StuffyourVAXX 49 minutes ago (Edited)

How the eff did I become an extremist? I work, pay taxes, own a home and have a family, and all I asked for was a fair election.

Moron Tagger 46 minutes ago remove link

That last bit.

Faceberg 43 minutes ago (Edited)

WTF? The lockdowns were ********, but I laughed at the sheeple. The ministry of truth idea scares the **** out of me. I think I'll go do an inventory now.

son of sam 38 minutes ago (Edited)

**** gittin really real now! Reality constructs handed out like 'masks' - "reality up," or you must go to quarantine camp and be 'reality-re-educated' - could mean wearing "google goggles" 24/7, and enforced 'selfie-taking' every 6 hours so as to prove to the THOUGHT POLICE that you are not deviating.

USA. It was fun, cool, and good while it lasted. Flic your bics, and shed a tear, as they drive ol Dixie down, for the very last time

Moron Tagger 48 minutes ago remove link

Reality is for people who can't handle drugs!

ted41776 51 minutes ago (Edited)

i nominate Brennan or Comey, they'll get the job done

edit: actually, now that i think about it, Eric Holder or Loretta Lynch would do a damn fine job too

so many good candidates

Faceberg 30 minutes ago

Lol. Those people are famous, but they're basically amateurs. If you want the varsity squad, you need Anti-Defamation league and the Southern Poverty Law Center. That's who's going to be running the interference, just like they do for Facebook, Google, YouTube, and Twitter.

As a happy cohencidence, but they have all of the IT infrastructure already built and ready to go. Talk about serendipity!

The First Rule 41 minutes ago

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act" - George Orwell

We are THERE.

Foe Jaws 31 minutes ago

That is why Pedo Joe's Sec of Defense has 30,000 troops guarding DC. It will be interesting to see how long they can keep them there and what will happen once they leave.

yerfej 29 minutes ago

Every fascist regime ends up where the US is right now, they can't sell what they're peddling so they have to control the narrative so they can push out propaganda to terrorize the citizens. Think about it, the US roams the world with its military and CIA terrorizing everyone and it does the same domestically, kind of funny how they seem to only have one function.

balz 35 minutes ago remove link

Those people are so sick they are beyond any therapy. Just wish I had a time machine to send them back to USSR in 1934, to see what is the end point of their sick ideology.

learnofjesuits 10 minutes ago

JFK: For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence--on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed.

[Feb 02, 2021] Orwell fiction comes true: Wikipedia is rewriting history on a daily basis

Feb 01, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

DanausPlex 4 hours ago

Orwell's 1984 predicted all this in 1948. Wikipedia is rewriting history on a daily basis, education is stifling young minds, free speech controlled, double standard legal system, burning books next?.... It's all there, 1984 is upon us.

But, remember our ancestors were considered terrorists by the by the controlling British at the time.

PEACEFUL revolution starting with 75+ million Americans will work.

[Feb 01, 2021] Would You Be Considered A Domestic Terrorist Under This New Bill

Jan 29, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Robert Wheeler via The Organic Prepper blog,

After 9/11, the entire country collectively lost its mind in the throes of fear. During that time, all civil and Constitutional rights were shredded and replaced with the pages of The USA PATRIOT Act .

Almost 20 years later, the U.S. has again lost its collective mind, this time in fear of a "virus" and it's "super mutations" and a "riot" at the capitol. A lot of people called this and to the surprise of very few, much like after 9/11, Americans are watching what remains of their civil liberties be replaced with a new bill.

The DTPA is essentially the criminalization of speech, expression, and thought . It takes cancel culture a step further and all but outlaws unpopular opinions . This act will empower intelligence, law enforcement, and even military wings of the American ruling class to crack down on individuals adhering to certain belief systems and ideologies.

According to MI Congressman Fred Upton:

"The attack on the U.S. Capitol earlier this month was the latest example of domestic terrorism, but the threat of domestic terrorism remains very real. We cannot turn a blind eye to it," Upton said. "The Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act will equip our law enforcement leaders with the tools needed to help keep our homes, families, and communities across the country safe.

Congressman Upton's website gives the following information on DTPA:

The Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act of 2021 would strengthen the federal government's efforts to prevent, report on, respond to, and investigate acts of domestic terrorism by authorizing offices dedicated to combating this threat; requiring these offices to regularly assess this threat; and providing training and resources to assist state, local, and tribal law enforcement in addressing it.

DTPA would authorize three offices, one each within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), to monitor, investigate, and prosecute cases of domestic terrorism. The bill also requires these offices to provide Congress with joint, biannual reports assessing the state of domestic terrorism threats, with a specific focus on white supremacists. Based on the data collected, DTPA requires these offices to focus their resources on the most significant threats.

DTPA also codifies the Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee, which would coordinate with United States Attorneys and other public safety officials to promote information sharing and ensure an effective, responsive, and organized joint effort to combat domestic terrorism. The legislation requires DOJ, FBI, and DHS to provide training and resources to assist state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies in understanding, detecting, deterring, and investigating acts of domestic terrorism and white supremacy. Finally, DTPA directs DHS, DOJ, FBI, and the Department of Defense to establish an interagency task force to combat white supremacist infiltration of the uniformed services and federal law enforcement.

Those who read the bill aren't so gung ho to shred the Constitution

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard has some serious reservations. In a recent interview on Fox News Primetime, Gabbard stated that the bill effectively criminalizes half of the country. (Emphasis ours)

"It's so dangerous as you guys have been talking about, this is an issue that all Democrats, Republicans, independents, Libertarians should be extremely concerned about, especially because we don't have to guess about where this goes or how this ends," Gabbard said.

She continued: "When you have people like former CIA Director John Brennan openly talking about how he's spoken with or heard from appointees and nominees in the Biden administration who are already starting to look across our country for these types of movements similar to the insurgencies they've seen overseas, that in his words, he says make up this unholy alliance of religious extremists, racists, bigots, he lists a few others and at the end, even libertarians."

Gabbard, stating her concern about how the government will define what qualities they are searching for in potential threats to the country, went on to ask:

"What characteristics are we looking for as we are building this profile of a potential extremist, what are we talking about? Religious extremists, are we talking about Christians, evangelical Christians, what is a religious extremist? Is it somebody who is pro-life? Where do you take this"

Tulsi said the bill would create a dangerous undermining of our civil liberties and freedoms in our Constitution. She also stated the DPTA essentially targets nearly half of the United States.

"You start looking at obviously, have to be a white person, obviously likely male, libertarians, anyone who loves freedom, liberty, maybe has an American flag outside their house, or people who, you know, attended a Trump rally, " Gabbard said.

Tulsi Gabbard is not the only one to criticize the legislation

Even the ACLU , one of the weakest organizations on civil liberties in the United States, has spoken out. While the ACLU was only concerned with how the bill would affect minorities or "brown people," the organization stated that the legislation, while set forth under the guise of countering white supremacy, would eventually be used against non-white people.

The ACLU's statement is true.

As with similar bills submitted under the guise of "protecting" Americans against outside threats, this bill will inevitably expand further. The stated goals of the DPTA are far-reaching and frightening enough. It would amount to an official declaration of the end to Free Speech.

Soon there will be no rights left for Americans

In the last twenty years, Americans have lost their 4th Amendment rights, and now they are losing their 1st. All that remains is the 2nd Amendment , and both the ruling class and increasing numbers of the American people know it.

Dark days are ahead.

[Jan 30, 2021] On the glorious victories of our GloboCap Overlords over the Great Orange Hitler/Satan and his deplorable hordes in the Jan 6 Insurrection

Notable quotes:
"... Despite four years of dire warnings by the corporate media, the Intelligence Community, Hollywood celebrities, the Democratic Party, faux anti-fascists, fake-Left pundits, and pretty much every utterly deluded, Trump-obsessed liberal with an Internet connection, there was no Hitlerian "Reichstag Fire," no Boogaloo, no Civil War II, no coup, no white-supremacist uprising. Nothing. The man simply got on a chopper and was flown away to his Florida resort. ..."
"... I know, you're probably thinking "Wow, how embarrassing for the GloboCap 'Resistance,' being exposed as a bunch of utterly shameless, neo-Goebbelsian propagandists, and liars, and hysterical idiots, and such!" And, in any other version of reality, you'd have a point but not in this one. ..."
"... No, in this reality, "Democracy Has Prevailed!" Yes, it was touch and go there for a while, as there was no guarantee that the Intelligence Community, the military-industrial complex, Western governments, the corporate media, supranational corporations, Internet oligarchs, and virtually every other component of the global-capitalist empire could keep one former game show host with no real political power whatsoever from taking over the entire world. ..."
Jan 26, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

gm , Jan 25 2021 16:13 utc | 124

@oldhippie | Jan 25 2021 15:14 utc | 114

Hopkins? I got the latest Hopkins ( C.J. Hopkins , that is) on the glorious victories of our GloboCap Overlords over the Great Orange Hitler/Satan and his deplorable hordes in the Jan 6 Insurrection, right here:

https://www.unz.com/chopkins/thats-all-folks/

As they used to say at the end of all those wacky Looney Tunes cartoons, that's all folks! The show is over. Literal Russian-Asset Hitler, the Latest Greatest Threat to Western Democracy, the Monster of Mar-a-Lago, Trumpzilla, Trumpenstein, the Ayatollah of Orange Shinola, has finally been humiliated and given the bum-rush out of Washington by the heroic forces of the GloboCap "Resistance," with a little help from the US military. The whole thing went exactly to script.

Well OK, not quite exactly to script. Despite four years of dire warnings by the corporate media, the Intelligence Community, Hollywood celebrities, the Democratic Party, faux anti-fascists, fake-Left pundits, and pretty much every utterly deluded, Trump-obsessed liberal with an Internet connection, there was no Hitlerian "Reichstag Fire," no Boogaloo, no Civil War II, no coup, no white-supremacist uprising. Nothing. The man simply got on a chopper and was flown away to his Florida resort.

I know, you're probably thinking "Wow, how embarrassing for the GloboCap 'Resistance,' being exposed as a bunch of utterly shameless, neo-Goebbelsian propagandists, and liars, and hysterical idiots, and such!" And, in any other version of reality, you'd have a point but not in this one.

No, in this reality, "Democracy Has Prevailed!" Yes, it was touch and go there for a while, as there was no guarantee that the Intelligence Community, the military-industrial complex, Western governments, the corporate media, supranational corporations, Internet oligarchs, and virtually every other component of the global-capitalist empire could keep one former game show host with no real political power whatsoever from taking over the entire world.

And here was GloboCap's dress rehearsal in Berlin last summer for the Jan 6 Capitol Reichstag show:

https://consentfactory.org/2020/09/02/new-normal-gleichschaltung-or-the-storming-of-the-reichstag-building-on-29-august-2020/

On March 21, 1933, the Nazi-controlled Reichstag passed a law making it a crime to speak out against the government. The "Regulations of the Reich President for Defense from Treacherous Attacks against the Government of the National Uprising" made even the slightest expression of dissent from Nazi ideology a criminal offense. This new law, among other totalitarian measures, was part of a process known as Gleichschaltung the process of achieving rigid and total ideological coordination and uniformity in politics, culture, and private communication by forcibly repressing (or eliminating) independence and freedom of thought and expression.

GloboCap hasn't done anything that heavy-handed in the course of rolling out the New Normal totalitarianism, but that's mainly because they do not have to. When you control the vast majority of the global corporate media, you don't need to pass a lot of ham-fisted laws banning all dissent from your totalitarian ideology. This isn't the 1930s, after all. Over the last ninety years, the arts of propaganda, disinformation, and perception management have advanced to a point that even Goebbels couldn't have imagined.

The skill with which GloboCap and the corporate media delegitimized the anti-New Normal demonstrations in Berlin, London, and other cities last weekend is a perfect example of the state of those arts. I'll focus on Berlin, as that's where I live, and the so-called "Storming of the Reichstag" incident, but it works pretty much the same way everywhere. I believe there was a curious incident involving a person with a fascist flag in London, and that the UK media have now officially chosen David Icke to be the movement's figurehead.

In Berlin, in the days leading up to the protests, government officials and corporate media propagandists did what officials and propagandists do they relentlessly repeated their official narrative, namely, that anyone protesting the New Normal (or doubting the official Coronavirus narrative) is a "violent neo-Nazi extremist," or "conspiracy theorist," or some other form of existential "threat to democracy."

[Jan 29, 2021] How To Survive -Cancel Culture- When You Have Unpopular Opinions - ZeroHedge

Jan 29, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

How To Survive "Cancel Culture" When You Have Unpopular Opinions BY TYLER DURDEN THURSDAY, JAN 28, 2021 - 19:30

Authored by Terry Trahan via TheOrganicPrepper.com,

Well, hello there. I don't know if you've noticed, but we live in a vastly different worl d than the last time I posted here . The social landscape, political, and, it seems, everyday life is trending vastly different since 2020, Covid, and the national elections.

Daisy recently sent out an email explaining the shift away from discussing politics in light of cancel culture and the like. I want to expand on those thoughts, but from an underground, guerrilla angle.

A huge part of survival, prepping, and Nomad Strategies is getting done what needs to be done with minimal interference or notice from those around us . The more eyes on your project, the more people that can foul up our plans, throw a wrench in the works, or, nowadays, ruin your life.

Have a secret identity.

So, we turn to lesson number one from the great bastion of literature: comic books.

What does almost every comic character have? A secret identity. And why? So they are not having to fight, protect their family, and hide from the public all the time. That is a mighty wise course of action. Life is not a movie. There are rarely times to take a bold, public stand that will put you or your people in danger.

It is a blessing to live in the time and place we do that enables us to engage in such vociferous debate levels with no real consequences. That is not the norm throughout history, and, as we can see, it is changing in front of our eyes. All one needs to do is look at the world outside of the U.S. for current or very recent historical examples. Take a look at where Selco comes from or Belfast just a couple of decades ago. Look at many areas of the Middle East, Syria , or Asia for current displays of enforcement.

You don't have to share your opinions with everyone.

Keeping a low profile as long as possible is a crucial OpSec practice .

Note: I am not saying you are not allowed to have opinions. But, I am a firm believer in only discussing them with known associates in private. It is also easier to keep seeing the other party as still human if you do it in person. *Othering is a nasty thing to do and nastier to be on the receiving end of. Remembering that the other side is not the devil incarnate helps to identify actual enemies easier. Instead of jumping at every boogyman brought to your attention, save your energy for real, in your face threats.

*The term Othering describes the reductive action of labeling and defining a person as a subaltern native, as someone who belongs to the socially subordinate category of the Other.

Choose your battles wisely, or don't battle at all

Another reason for concentrating on the mission: it's a waste of your time. Leave the arguing and name-calling to others. Arguing lessens your productivity and may alienate potential allies that could assist you. (Except for those pesky Facebook posts you made, calling their kind evil and stupid.) Choosing not to participate in arguments and debates shows that you have mental toughness, compassion, discernment, and, most importantly, self-control.

In case you aren't aware, those and your integrity are essential things to keep intact. Both for our own well being and for cultivating good, successful relationships. Keep your ego intact, and if you can exercise the self-control required to not argue points with others that don't matter in the day-to-day.

You will be more peaceful.

Fewer distractions = more time to work on numero uno

As Toby Cowern's recent article asks: Are You Maintaining the Most Vital Resources in Your Preppertoire? And what is that resource? YOU. Are you making sure that self-care is the most important part of your prepping plans?

We want to give ourselves as much time as possible to work on various aspects of ourselves that need the work.

Distractions from this can be costly. It can be costly in terms of time wasted on a needless post, and at its worst, it can literally cost you everything you have worked for and built up.

Stop throwing chum to the internet sharks.

An important but often overlooked aspect of any successful underground work is the ability to escape notice. Therefore escaping issues that will negatively impact your ability to move forward will help you complete whatever the mission at hand is.

Rather than willingly compromising your future, stop engaging with the sharks. Instead of spending time engaged in activities that are not beneficial, use your time wisely. Allocate the majority of your time to doing the work. Use your downtime to recharge, find the good, relax, and keep your eyes on the prize.

There may be a time in the near future where we must elevate to a more offensive posture. But now is not that time. What we do now is an important step in keeping us more even-keeled and ready. Don't volunteer yourself for the enemies list. There are already plenty of people that will gladly put some of us there.

1 hour ago (Edited) remove link

"Political correctness is fascism pretending to be manners."

-- George Carlin play_arrow


Patmos 17 minutes ago

Ahhhh... George Carlin.... Back when liberals were liberals, and not "woke" regressive morons.

Banker415 PRO 1 hour ago (Edited) remove link

1. Get off Facebook

2. Delete your Instagram

3. Stop using douche apps like Snap and TikTok

4. Don't use WhatsApp--switch to Signal and Wickr

5. Migrate off of Google apps and Apple-related apps

6. Kill your Twitter

knopperz 1 hour ago remove link

Jack Dorsey is in cahoots with Signal.
He celebrated on Twitter when it went #1 after the Parler Ban.

Rather use Telegram.

Banker415 PRO 1 hour ago

I agree with you on Signal... but it's a short-term solution until better apps are available. Telegram is ok but its subject to the same MITM attacks as the others.

Foe Jaws 1 hour ago

I have been using DuckDuckGo for a few years it is a fine replacement for Google.

AnonymousCitizen 58 minutes ago

You might want to look into the management team of DuckDuckGo. It may not be the search engine you're looking for.

Onthebeach6 1 hour ago remove link

Sounds like the author is preparing to be a very quiet mouse and accept the coup d'etat and the new illegitimate regime.

The new regime will consolidate quickly to eliminate any chance of organized resistance - they may also try to make it impossible for states to secede.

Ted K. 6 minutes ago (Edited) remove link

So, is this where we're at? Now that we know 'political correctness' has grown up into 'cancel culture' with this takeover of the USA and Western society (because that's what it is), we're simply reduced to understanding 'how to survive' in it?

For real? Really? REALLY?!?!

No fight at all? We're all just gonna lie down and show our bellies and accept this?

No way. Die on your feet.

[Jan 28, 2021] Contraband By Walrus

Notable quotes:
"... The Walrus law applies: "All governments achieve the reverse of their stated intentions". This Act, and associated DOJ enforcement, will do more to radicalise white males than the KKK in their wildest fantasies could imagine. It is bad law - bad for America - all of it. It makes us all poorer and less free, everyone, even the left wing will suffer and it will drag down our economy. It will increase stress tension and expense. ..."
"... The Capitol invasion is being used as the foundation for a kind of Dolchstoßlegende - the excuse that was spun into the mythical rationale for persecuting German Jewry in the Nazi era. In America's case this consists of the cooperative media (one which would make Goebbels proud) painting all Trump supporters as potential insurrectionists/terrorists and thus enemies of the state. This will not end well. ..."
Jan 28, 2021 | turcopolier.typepad.com

We are entering an era where "White Supremacist" is the ultimate dirty word, at least according to the Domestic Terrorism bill of 2021. Read the Act. Guilt is determined by a committee of..... the Department of Justice. This is an Orwellian development.

The Walrus law applies: "All governments achieve the reverse of their stated intentions". This Act, and associated DOJ enforcement, will do more to radicalise white males than the KKK in their wildest fantasies could imagine. It is bad law - bad for America - all of it. It makes us all poorer and less free, everyone, even the left wing will suffer and it will drag down our economy. It will increase stress tension and expense.

As Australia's pre eminent Rabbi, John Levi, said yesterday (Australia Day): "plurality (of ideas) strengthens us". A PC monoculture blaming racist white males for everything that is wrong hides the true causes and hinders problem solving.

Furthermore radicalised white males are going to respond and the result will be further polarisation.

I add a tiny cup of fuel to the fire by adding the link to some soon to be contraband below. Lynyrd Skynyrd is soon to be proscribed. Count on it. Download this while you can. Teach yourself and your kids the words and to hum it or sing it. It's your identification code.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zup5Pg98m5U&list=RDGMEMJQXQAmqrnmK1SEjY_rKBGA&start_radio=1


Fred , 27 January 2021 at 08:34 AM

You left out a link to the actual bill, sponsored by some expected members, however none or the Squad, or any women, have cosponsored this as yet. I blame the sexism of the original sponsors. Shame on them.

https://schneider.house.gov/sites/schneider.house.gov/files/DTPA%20of%202021.pdf

"'hate crime incident'' means an act described in section 241, 245, 247, or 249 of title 18, United States Code, or in section 901 of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3631);"

Looks like a lot of laws already in place.

Fourth and Long , 27 January 2021 at 09:42 AM

Nancy wants to eliminate the word "mother" from mention in the Congress of the United States:

https://nypost.com/2021/01/04/sorry-pelosi-eliminating-official-use-of-mother-isnt-inclusive-its-waging-war-on-women/

Also, of course, "father," "brother," "sister."

I guess a foolish consistency really is the hobgoblin of little minds.

blue peacock , 27 January 2021 at 10:41 AM

There's the perfectly Orwellian HR-1 that Ms. Pelosi intends to bring to a floor vote as the first legislative act of the Party of Davos.

To expand Americans' access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, strengthen ethics rules for public servants, and implement other anti-corruption measures for the purpose of fortifying our democracy, and for other purposes.

https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-bill/1/text?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22hr1%22%5D%7D&r=1&s=2

This legislation if it becomes law will essentially end elections as we have known it in the past where States run all elections and make the "steal" permanent.

Diana Croissant , 27 January 2021 at 11:05 AM

Will they ban the word "redneck"? I come from a very large family of rednecks--women and men--who worked the fields on farms their entire lives. There is a very large number of rednecks in this country.

Thanks for the music.

Fourth and Long , 27 January 2021 at 12:25 PM

Walrus,

"Sweet Home .. " would be my choice for the national anthem of the United States of America.

Way things are going you might advise people to download ZZ Top too:

Sharp-Dressed Man:
https://youtu.be/7wRHBLwpASw

Legs:
https://youtu.be/eUDcTLaWJuo

How long will Natali's version of "Takovo Kak Putin" (A Man Like Putin) remain safe?:

https://youtu.be/hUh9pThGdm4

Opening guitar lick in Sweet Home Alabama is unrivaled. Thanks.

Barbara Ann , 27 January 2021 at 01:11 PM

Walrus

You warned in a previous post how far and how fast the tide would go out - to use the Shakespearean analogy - once the Dems took power. You were right and I think anyone who could not see this coming has been deluding themselves. The Left is at war with Deplorables and it looks very much like they are willing to develop a full blown police state in order to help prosecute it. This should not be a surprise.

The Walrus law may apply in this case. My only reservation here is the question as to whether or not this legislation is intended to further radicalize the enemy (white conservatives). Congress is clueless, as usual, but the more unhinged totalitarian minds could be hoping for this very outcome (John Brennan I'm thinking of you).

Ever since that fateful day when HRC categorized a large section of the electorate as "deplorable" it has been obvious that the Dem establishment sees a good portion of the citizenry not as a constituency to be won over, but as a barrier to Progress. The 2016 election served to confirm to the globalists that Deplorables were capable of derailing their project. Now that they are back in power, Deplorables must be demonized.

The Capitol invasion is being used as the foundation for a kind of Dolchstoßlegende - the excuse that was spun into the mythical rationale for persecuting German Jewry in the Nazi era. In America's case this consists of the cooperative media (one which would make Goebbels proud) painting all Trump supporters as potential insurrectionists/terrorists and thus enemies of the state. This will not end well.

As I said in a recent comment on another post, I think we are entering the phase where accelerated feedback will quickly harden attitudes on both sides. Can this descent be stopped or even reversed? I am by no means confident, but would very much like to hear optimistic, yet realistic counter arguments - as the future looks bleak indeed.


As an aside, I've just noticed that clicking on the "Walrus" category to find your tagged posts yield none. Not sure whether this is a TypePad error or something I'm doing wrong. Other category searches work fine.

[Jan 27, 2021] Once programmed, people will only change their mind if their understanding of the world becomes untenable

Notable quotes:
"... People are really suffering from neo-liberalism, and suffering people tend to complain and lash out at the wrong targets sometimes. ..."
Jan 27, 2021 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

ChrisFromGeorgia , January 27, 2021 at 2:35 pm

Once programmed, people will only change their mind if their understanding of the world becomes untenable

That one is a keeper, I will borrow it myself in the future. Your number 2 is also very important, I think. People are really suffering from neo-liberalism, and suffering people tend to complain and lash out at the wrong targets sometimes.

[Jan 27, 2021] We are immersed in propaganda and live in a literally Orwellian world (forever wars with interchangeable enemies, total surveillance all the time, internal enemies neutralised). So false flags, grotesque fabrications, relentless repetition of obvious falsehoods and contradictory stories, are commonplace.

Notable quotes:
"... Re Trump vs democracy I say the democracy train left the station a long time ago, now it's mostly theatre. ..."
"... Re Biden being the saviour I say I hold little hope because in the past he has been a total supporter of forever war and Wall Street and I see little to indicate he has changed. ..."
"... "Man is not a rational animal; he is a rationalizing animal." ..."
"... I was reading a post in Ritzholtz about studies of cognitive dissonance. It was about the people who believed a spaceship would come and save them before the earth was destroyed. One point that was made that I think gets overlooked is that these people had jobs, relationships, they fully understood how the world worked 99.999 percent of the time. ..."
"... They were wrong about 1 major thing. I try to remember that I can't be right in everything either, and if I am wrong, how do I know it? ..."
Jan 27, 2021 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Keith Newman , January 27, 2021 at 10:50 am

Here is what helps me understand:

  1. We are great apes, 95% non-rational, with a thin veneer of rationality. We crave hierarchy.
  2. Life is becoming increasingly difficult materially and emotionally for many many people.
  3. Media-promoted division is very profitable, and our rulers want us divided and weak, so division is sown endlessly.
  4. We are immersed in propaganda and live in a literally Orwellian world (forever wars with interchangeable enemies, total surveillance all the time, internal enemies neutralised). So false flags, grotesque fabrications, relentless repetition of obvious falsehoods and contradictory stories, are commonplace.

What I do:I live within the progressive side of things where the 4 points above abound – especially Trump derangement syndrome and extreme identity politics. With people I almost never see or don't care if I never do again, I challenge them (respond with comments along the lines of points 3 and 4).

With people in my close world I am much more careful and usually quite restrained. I determine how resilient I think the person is. How much challenge they can absorb. I keep in mind Caitlin Johnson's point that, once programmed, people will only change their mind if their understanding of the world becomes untenable. I know my few comments will not achieve that. Re Russia-gate I say the hard evidence seems very weak to me and the story barely believable.

Re Trump vs democracy I say the democracy train left the station a long time ago, now it's mostly theatre.

Re general Trump derangement syndrome say I policy-wise he is a standard Republican, but personally a jack-ass.

Re Biden being the saviour I say I hold little hope because in the past he has been a total supporter of forever war and Wall Street and I see little to indicate he has changed.

Then I let it go. Well, I try

vlade , January 27, 2021 at 11:28 am

"Man is not a rational animal; he is a rationalizing animal."

ChrisFromGeorgia , January 27, 2021 at 2:35 pm

Once programmed, people will only change their mind if their understanding of the world becomes untenable

That one is a keeper, I will borrow it myself in the future. Your number 2 is also very important, I think. People are really suffering from neo-liberalism, and suffering people tend to complain and lash out at the wrong targets sometimes.

fresno dan , January 27, 2021 at 6:05 pm

Keith Newman
January 27, 2021 at 10:50 am

agree completely – very well said. I always try to remember what I used to believe but no longer do. I believed it than, and I don't think I had less respect for the truth than – I was just wrong. I could be wrong now.

I was reading a post in Ritzholtz about studies of cognitive dissonance. It was about the people who believed a spaceship would come and save them before the earth was destroyed. One point that was made that I think gets overlooked is that these people had jobs, relationships, they fully understood how the world worked 99.999 percent of the time.

They were wrong about 1 major thing. I try to remember that I can't be right in everything either, and if I am wrong, how do I know it?

David , January 27, 2021 at 11:05 am

Interestingly enough, my very liberal neighbor considers me a Trumpist who harbors these views simply because I'm not a Biden supporter (you're with us or against us, somehow Biden is labeled as good). I've tried to explain that I would have voted for a Dem if Tulsi had been allowed to run, but once the DNC deemed her unwelcome, so to did they deem me unworthy. Of course my failure to place Obama on the throne of divinity shreds any remaining moral values I may have. It would seem as though any position short of hard left justifies the label of deplorable. I find I have adopted the strategy of many I know, just keep it to yourself, dare you temp team cancel.

Donald , January 27, 2021 at 11:37 am

I think a big part of the problem is that it is sometimes genuinely hard to tell the difference between crackpot conspiracy theories and, well, true conspiracy theories. And as most of us know, the mainstream press can't always be trusted.

So here are two examples. What the heck was going on with Epstein? Not just his death, but his whole life? I won't go into any of the various conspiracy theories because I don't have evidence, but I strongly suspect there was some intelligence agency or agencies involved. But anyway, that story has vanished and as far as I know, nobody really knows what was going on.

Second, I follow Aaron Mate and tentatively believe he is right -- the OPCW is probably corrupt and lied about the evidence regarding what happened in Douma. If so, that is a gigantic scandal, made worse by the fact that the press has largely chosen to ignore it. More generally, I think we got a hugely one- sided and distorted view of the Syrian War. I don't doubt that Assad is a war criminal, but I think the war crimes of the people we supported ( and our own crimes in the bombing of Raqqa and of Mosul in Iraq) were mostly downplayed or ignored. In the mainstream US press I think Robert Worth is probably the best reporter. He doesn't downplay anybody's crimes. But most of the coverage isn't like that.

One could go on and on. I gave up trying to figure out what parts of Russiagate were true. But my attitude is that even if the Russians did steal the emails, releasing them was a public service, and for Americans to get hysterical about Russian interference given what we do all the time is nothing more than a joke.

So anyway, Qanon aside, I don't feel always blame people who believe false conspiracy theories because it really is hard sometimes to figure out what is true when our mainstream sources are often unreliable. The NYT has a lot of resources. Imagine what they could be doing if they really were interested in following a story no matter where it led. But I suppose if they were like that they probably wouldn't have gotten to be such a powerful institution in the first place.

Reality Bites , January 27, 2021 at 1:08 pm

I think you are quite correct. I know a number of people that are Trumpists. Only one of them fits the standard stereotype pushed by the media (no college education, rural, poor, white male). The rest are all PMC types that are very pro-gun and and anti-tax. One was all about blue lives matter until Babbitt was killed. He was perplexed when I was not angered she was killed while storming the capitol building. I tried to explain but nuance is simply not done.

The bigger issue is, as you say, not whether you believe in conspiracy theories but which ones. Russiagate is a block of swiss cheese as hole-filled as Pizzagate. However, simply blowing it off as a conspiracy theory is not easy when stories like Epstein cannot be explained away. There is probably near-universal disgust of the current ruling class but it is all being craftily misdirected so as to prevent change. But that sounds curiously conspiratorial

Samuel Conner , January 27, 2021 at 6:17 pm

> But that sounds curiously conspiratorial

"Class consciousness" means never having to "breathe together".

[Jan 27, 2021] The new brave world is virtual, like most of Biden's inauguration. It is ruled by digital companies fronted by old senile politicians by Israel Shamir

Jan 27, 2021 | www.unz.com

At 78, after a prolonged illness and without recovering consciousness, Joe Biden succumbed to the Presidency. The last hopes of the last QAnon believers vanished like smoke in the night, with Biden assuming the mighty US throne. This is truly a dark day for America and for the world, as the US example will be followed by many. It is also a farewell to the real world we were brought up in. The new world is virtual, like most of the inauguration. It is virtual and dark, ruled by digital companies fronted by old and tired politicians.

[Jan 24, 2021] War Propaganda- The Cult of Militarism by Rod Driver

Jan 24, 2021 | www.globalresearch.ca

War Propaganda: The Cult of Militarism Part 15a of 'Elephants in the Room' series By Rod Driver Global Research, January 20, 2021 Region: USA Theme: Intelligence

7

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/like.php?action=&app_id=&channel=https%3A%2F%2Fstaticxx.facebook.com%2Fx%2Fconnect%2Fxd_arbiter%2F%3Fversion%3D46%23cb%3Df13572e6ce6e3e4%26domain%3Dwww.globalresearch.ca%26origin%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.globalresearch.ca%252Ffb8fa1c6f48058%26relation%3Dparent.parent&container_width=0&href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca%2Fwar-propaganda-2-cult-militarism%2F5734876&layout=button_count&locale=en_US&sdk=joey&send=false&show_faces=false

https://apis.google.com/u/0/se/0/_/+1/fastbutton?usegapi=1&size=medium&count=true&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca%2Fwar-propaganda-2-cult-militarism%2F5734876&gsrc=3p&jsh=m%3B%2F_%2Fscs%2Fapps-static%2F_%2Fjs%2Fk%3Doz.gapi.en.L7mys-cL6BM.O%2Fam%3DwQE%2Fd%3D1%2Fct%3Dzgms%2Frs%3DAGLTcCPymG0XQrEqIOsFKina7y-Dy-g0lQ%2Fm%3D__features__#_methods=onPlusOne%2C_ready%2C_close%2C_open%2C_resizeMe%2C_renderstart%2Concircled%2Cdrefresh%2Cerefresh&id=I0_1611462901916&_gfid=I0_1611462901916&parent=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalresearch.ca&pfname=&rpctoken=35829895 10

This is the second of two posts about war propaganda, and the last of four posts about propaganda more generally.

"War will exist until the distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige as the warrior does today" (John F.Kennedy(1))

War Propaganda Runs Through Our Culture

Hollywood movies about war or spying tend to portray the US military, or James Bond, as the 'good guys' involved in 'goodies vs baddies' conflicts, with little discussion of the crimes of the US and British militaries and their spy agencies. The US military cooperates closely with these productions provided that they have final script approval, and can change scripts or scenes that they do not like. Where movies have tried to say anything negative about the US military, cooperation has been refused. They expect to have a generally patriotic view of the US, with the military portrayed as heroes, always with good intentions. These films actually help to recruit people for the military. The US navy provided planes, pilots and warships for the 1986 movie 'Top Gun'. This led to a big rise in applications for people to become US fighter pilots. A more recent development has been the use of internet adverts for Hollywood movies, which deceptively take people to disguised army recruitment websites.(2)

One of the best examples of CIA propaganda is their manipulation of the film version of George Orwell's book 'Animal Farm.' The book highlights the fact that politicians in both capitalist and communist countries can be corrupted by power. The CIA bought the film rights, knowing that it could be used as a propaganda tool. The CIA's film version omits the most important part of the ending (which criticises capitalism) creating the impression that it is only a criticism of communism.(3)

The developers of many computer video games work closely with the US military. There is increasing use of drones in the military, piloted by soldiers thousands of miles away. What they see on their control screens is indistinguishable from a video game. The content of some games involves overthrowing governments in countries such as Venezuela.(4) Evidence from wars in Afghanistan and Iraq indicates that US soldiers participate in war as if they are playing a video game, and therefore they can convince themselves that their actions have no consequences.

Never Question The Soldiers

One of the strongest parts of any pro-war propaganda system is convincing everyone that whatever criticisms they make, they must always support the troops. But the job of a British or American soldier has nothing to do with freedom or democracy. They are trained killers whose job is to invade and occupy other countries, and kill anyone who gets in the way. Britain's military is much smaller than that of the US, but British propaganda plays an important role in generating support for war.(5) Military veterans are always praised on television when they appear at public events. When large numbers of people are being slaughtered in Iraq, there is a big difference between saying 'The valiant British and American soldiers in Iraq were viciously attacked by terrorists, but successfully defended themselves' and 'The British and American occupation forces murdered large numbers of Iraqi people'. Variations of the first comment appear in US and British media regularly, but the second is a more honest way of describing what is going on.

Groups of former soldiers, such as 'Veterans for Peace', are now coming forward to explain that basic training is a form of brainwashing, and that the version of war that they experience, which is the mass slaughter of innocent people, is completely different from the propaganda.(6)

Brainwashing Begins In Childhood

Children's comic books about World War 2, such as Commando and War Picture Library, were very popular for decades after the war. They had a strong focus on patriotism and heroism. They stereotyped people from enemy countries as cruel or cowardly, and used derogatory terms such as jerries, huns or krauts for German people, eyeties for Italian people, or nips for Japanese people.(7) A generation of children grew up with a very distorted view of the war and people in other countries.

Astute readers will have realised that the materials in these blogs are not taught in schools. Most young people reach adulthood with no understanding of how the world really works. This is because governments do not want citizens to understand the crimes they commit.

In 2007 the British government decided to increase its military propaganda in schools and society more generally. It is encouraging more schools to have cadet forces. Sports competitions for injured soldiers, such as the Invictus games in the UK, and the Warrior games in the US, are intended to present former soldiers as heroes.(8) The link between the military and the British Royal family also plays a propaganda role. More recently, Britain's cybersecurity agency, GCHQ, started running courses in schools teaching hacking skills, and inviting young children to visit them.(9) One campaign group noted:

"Armed Forces Day, Remembrance Day, Uniform to Work Day, Camo Day [where people wear camouflage], in the streets, on television, on the web, at sports events, in schools, advertising and fashion – the military presence in UK civilian life is increasing daily"(10)

All of the activities described above are forms of militarism, where people are encouraged to see the military, and spying, in positive terms; to think of violent, military solutions as the best way to solve international disagreements; and to ignore peaceful alternatives. There is no discussion of British and US war crimes, or the illegal spying activities of GCHQ(11) and its US equivalent, the NSA. Encouraging children to play with military vehicles and weapons, and to watch military parachutists or airshows, is intended to indoctrinate them. School trips to war museums have a similar effect. Ideas learned at a young age come to seem like common sense, as opposed to propaganda intended to serve the interests of rich and powerful people. These activities play a direct role in recruiting soldiers, but just as importantly, they recruit a large number of people to support militarism unquestioningly.(12)

The Power of Patriotism

The military activities mentioned above also indoctrinate people into thinking about patriotism and nationalism, which are incredibly powerful propaganda tools.(13) Putting the head of a Monarch or an Emperor onto coins was one of the earliest forms of propaganda, and stamps with the Queen on them have a similar purpose. Royal pageants and processions are celebrated as major national events. We are encouraged to think of our country as a single entity, to be proud of it, and to forget, ignore, or be unaware of the crimes of our government, and the fact that most people have little in common with the billionaires and millionaires who dominate political decision-making. It makes it easy for decision-makers to generate support for foreign wars, and to describe others as 'the enemy'.

The Basic Principles of War Propaganda: The US Lies About Every War

Propaganda Works on Politicians Too

It is important to realise that some government propaganda is targeted at politicians. This is where the intelligence services come in. Most people think that intelligence services exist to provide accurate information. This is only partly true. Some parts of the intelligence services have a secondary role, which is to present information that supports policy. The US decided to invade Iraq a long time before the invasion actually happened. From that point onwards, they were trying to find intelligence that would give them a good excuse to invade. Intelligence officers in Britain were told that if they did not sign up to a dossier on Weapons of Mass Destruction, that they knew was untrue, that would be the end of their careers. In the US, whole new departments were set up. The Office of Strategic Influence was set up in 2001 to support the war on terror through psychological operations (PSYOPs), which includes creating fake stories and propaganda. The Office of Special Plans was set up in 2002 specifically to 're-interpret' data to create a case for war. If the data did not support war, officers would be told that this was not what their superiors wanted to hear, and they should try again until they came up with the 'right' result.(14)

Anti-war opinions are being censored – Manipulating Information on the Internet

The internet is becoming increasingly important as a source of information, particularly for young people. Wikipedia began as an online encyclopedia that could be edited by anyone. On some non-political topics, it is a useful source of information. Unfortunately, most edits are now made by a small number of people. There is strong evidence that some of these people are not honest, independent researchers. They work to protect the establishment against its critics.(15) Critical websites such as The Grayzone have been blacklisted by Wikipedia, even though it has an outstanding track record of investigative journalism.(16) Many anti-war activists, including the former ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, discovered that their Wikipedia entries had all been changed hundreds of times in very negative ways by a single individual (or, more likely, a group of people operating under a single username).

Critical writers have noted that Facebook and Twitter censor their output, and Google manipulates search results so that critical work does not appear on the first page of results. This means that it is becoming more and more difficult for people to find information that challenges the mainstream view.

Some Propaganda is More Subtle – Newspeak and Euphemisms

Most of the war propaganda discussed so far is reasonably obvious, once people have been made aware that it is propaganda. However, as with other forms of propaganda, war propaganda actually permeates our society.

We saw in an earlier post about the weapons industry that the word defence is actually a euphemism for invasions, occupations, mass murder and maiming. There are many other words that are intentionally used to give a misleading impression of what's going on. The following is just a short selection of the more obvious ones:

George Orwell, the author of '1984', used the term 'Newspeak' to describe how the government and the media use language as a weapon to limit the range of ideas that people consider reasonable, and to distort our understanding of important issues. For example, politicians such as Jeremy Corbyn, who object to invasions or drone assassinations, are labeled as 'soft-on-defence' or 'soft-on-terror',(17) when in fact they are objecting to serious crimes by our government. If you watch any mainstream news program, particularly on the BBC, you eventually realise that Newspeak is being used all the time.

[Jan 24, 2021] One of the nuggets to be mined from the wholesale cancelling of politically unapproved speech by the Tech Oligarchs soon to be empowered by government oligarchs by Eric Peters

Notable quotes:
"... Consider the religious tenets of the Sickness Cult; specifically, the dogma that requires all to wear a Face Burqa within a privately owned business, even if the owner isn't religious and isn't interested in proselytizing to his customers, much less insisting they show respect for a religion he doesn't subscribe to. ..."
"... "It was a bright, cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen" ..."
Jan 24, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Eric Peters via EricPetersAutos.com,

One of the nuggets to be mined from the wholesale cancelling of politically unapproved speech by the Tech Oligarchs – soon to be empowered by government oligarchs, if the "kraken" doesn't somehow prevent it – is how obvious their pathological dishonesty has become.

Amazon, Facebook and Twitter have asserted that, as private businesses , they have the right to decide with whom to do business – and not do business with. But do they feel the same way about the right of other private businesses to practice what they preach?

Only when it conforms with what they preach.

Consider the religious tenets of the Sickness Cult; specifically, the dogma that requires all to wear a Face Burqa within a privately owned business, even if the owner isn't religious and isn't interested in proselytizing to his customers, much less insisting they show respect for a religion he doesn't subscribe to.

It is a private business, is it not?

Why then must this private business be forced to conduct its business according to the religious tenets of people who don't own the business? Isn't that a violation of the owner's rights, just the same as the rights asserted by Amazon, Facebook and Twitter?

... ... ...

These Despicables want to enjoy the right to cancel, close – and decree – to others while at the same time denying the right of any other privately owned business to set its own terms and conditions.

The Despicables cannot stand the idea of freedom of religion when it comes to the wearing of the Face Burqa, for instance. The Holy Vestment must be worn everywhere, even within privately owned businesses and irrespective of a businesses' private property rights.

... ... ...

RedDog1 18 hours ago remove link

"It was a bright, cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen"

George Orwell/1984

[Jan 23, 2021] Big Tech, Big Brother, The End Of Free Speech by Frank Miele

Jan 22, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Frank Miele via RealClearPolitics.com,

In George Orwell's "Nineteen Eighty-Four," members of the Outer Party of Oceania engage in the Two Minutes Hate ritual against Emmanuel Goldstein, who is supposed to be the enemy of the people but may actually just be a fabricated symbol to distract the people from their real enemy -- Big Brother.

In Nancy Pelosi's "Twenty Twenty-One," members of the Democratic Party engage in the Two Hours Hate against Donald Trump, who is supposed to be the enemy of the people, but may actually just be a fabricated symbol to distract the people from their real enemy -- Big Tech.

Two hours of hate -- er, debate -- was held in the House of Representatives last Wednesday for the avowed purpose of removing a president of the United States. That's all it took. Two hours. That should tell you everything you need to know about the state of democracy in our country.

More time is routinely spent on picking wallpaper. But let's face it, most families wouldn't trust Congress to pick out wallpaper for their living room, so why should we trust these self-appointed moral arbiters to pick our president?

Well, we don't. Not all of us.

Rep. Doug LaMalfa, a Republican representative from California, put it plainly in his 90-second speech when he said the "second annual impeachment" of Donald Trump "isn't really about actual words spoken at a rally. No, this is all about the unbridled hatred of this president [by Democrats]. You use any extreme language and any process to oppose the core of what he has really fought for. You hate him because he is pro-life, the strongest ever. You hate him for fighting for the freedom of religion. You hate him for Israel. You hate him for defending our borders. You hate him for putting America first."

They certainly shouldn't hate him -- or impeach him -- just for telling a rally crowd that "everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard." But that's what they did. In two hours.

And before they ever got around to impeaching Trump, they de-platformed him. With stunning suddenness, Trump went from the most powerful man in the world to a cornered, desperate fugitive. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google -- they all came for him. Most importantly, they came for us. Everyone who sided with the president, everyone who agreed with the president about the questions of election fraud, we are all now guilty by association, and Big Tech has turned its sights on all of us.

https://lockerdome.com/lad/13084989113709670?pubid=ld-dfp-ad-13084989113709670-0&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com&rid=www.zerohedge.com&width=511

"Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?"

Those were the words that terrified millions of Americans in the 1950s when Joe McCarthy and other senators tried to purge the United States of what they considered a subversive movement designed to overthrow the government.

In that case, of course, it was conservative senators -- both Democrat and Republican -- who were trying to expose what they called a communist conspiracy. In their zeal to protect the nation, they trampled on the civil liberties of individual Americans and tried to strip them of their jobs, their reputations and in some cases their very freedom.

What was the crime most of those Americans had committed? They had either attended a meeting of the Communist Party, donated money to the Communist Party or signed a petition on behalf of the Communist Party. In other words, they had exercised their First Amendment rights of speech and assembly. They had used their own minds and reached unpopular opinions. That was all it took for McCarthy to try to ruin their lives.

Apparently the American left never forgot what was done to them, and now that they have achieved absolute power, it looks like they want revenge.

In the lead-up to the impeachment vote, Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts put Trump defender Jim Jordan "on trial" for the new crime of having a dissenting view on the 2020 presidential election. The question McGovern barked at Jordan in a congressional hearing last week could be repeated in job interviews for years to come:

"Will you admit that Joe Biden won fair and square and that the election was not rigged or stolen?"

Jordan avoided a direct answer, but of course he and millions of other people don't believe that Biden won fair and square. In a free country, they could say so, but in Pelosi's "Twenty Twenty-One," you say so at your own risk. To begin with, you can lose your Twitter account or your Facebook account, but who's to say that you won't lose your bank account next? China has a "social credit" system that deprives citizens of certain rights if their score falls below a certain level of acceptability -- meaning if they don't follow the party line in their thinking and their public persona. You might lose your job. You might be denied a ticket on a train or a plane. The only recourse is to do what the party tells you to do -- even if it means accepting that 2+2=5.

Now, in modern America, we are precipitously close to duplicating the monolithic control of information that Orwell predicted in "Nineteen Eighty-Four" and that the Chinese Communist Party has perfected.

In the last two weeks, we have seen the power of Big Tech unleashed mercilessly. With the complicit assistance of Big Media, the Silicon Valley oligarchs not only neutered President Trump as a political leader by taking away his bully pulpit but also effectively crushed dissent by demanding that only social media companies that censor unpopular opinions can have a platform on the Internet. Bye-bye, Parler. You can also make a reasonable case that Democrats in Congress would never have impeached President Trump from public office so hastily were they not goaded into action by Twitter and Facebook taking the first step of banning him from public life.

In a sense, Big Tech has taken cyberbullying to its logical conclusion. When 13-year-olds are entrusted with cellphones and Snapchat accounts, they can use them to bring shame on innocent children and even destroy their lives. Often, this involves spreading false rumors about the person or discrediting them for something they espouse, like their religion, their political beliefs or their sexual identity.

Tell me how this is different from what Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have done to Donald Trump and, by extension, the more than 74 million people who voted for him. This group of post-pubescent cyberbullies in Silicon Valley doesn't like Donald Trump. They feel justified in calling him names like white supremacist and Nazi and racist. They don't care whether it hurts him or not. They don't care whether it is true or not. They are strangely enlivened by what they perceive as their ability to hurt him, to weaken him. Like the mob that they have attempted to link the president to, these bullies act in mindless concert, emboldened by each other to see who can strike the deeper blow, who can make the victim hurt more.

And over what? Differences of opinion, for the most part. Strong border or no border? Mask or no mask? Globalism or Americanism? Carbon credits or fracking? Abortion or no abortion? And then the last straw -- fair election or fraudulent election?

These should be legitimate subjects for debate in a free society. But not anymore. Big Tech has banned debate about government policy on the coronavirus, and any discussion of election fraud is treated as if it were a crime. But wait? It's only a crime to question the government in a totalitarian system, like that in communist China or Orwell's fictional Oceania, right? In America, we have the right and obligation to question our government, don't we? Because, if we don't have that right any longer, then what are they afraid of? What are they hiding?

Bottom line: At some point in some election, the allegations of election fraud have to be real. It can't always just be the figment of some right-wing president's imagination. And if we aren't allowed to have free speech, then how do we fight back? If Big Tech and Big Government have their way, we don't. Just keep your head down and your nose clean -- and never ever question what you are told.

Remember, 2+2=5. play_arrow


sgt_doom 8 hours ago (Edited) remove link

NTD TV now on cable!?

NTD TV and Epoch Times about the only Real News in America today!

Rolling Stone reports antifa is being "demonized"!

The New Yorker reports that antifa is protecting Portland from "white supremacists"a

RISE IMAGES feeds videos to the networks --- RISE IMAGES is a commie ghost site!

gaaasp 16 hours ago remove link

Two hours of hate? Try 4+ years of constant hate.

J J Pettigrew 5 hours ago remove link

So a person can not ask...

"Who shot Ashli Babbit?"

or

"Did Chris Wray just blackmail Joe Biden?" (Wray get's to keep his job, and Hunter's laptop)

sunra 11 hours ago remove link

'big tech' is a result of 9/11, banks and the patriot act meeting stupids.

big tech has become the power tool and real time dashboard of banks and politicians to rule the sheeple.

LouTurks PREMIUM 3 hours ago remove link

Einstein's Island is opening under new management! Thank you Joe

africoman 11 hours ago remove link

Trump Impeachment & Capitol Riots

Following the January 6th riots at the Capitol in Washington DC, Donald Trump became the first president in US history to be impeached twice after being charged with �incitement of insurrection�. Trump was also banned from Twitter and DE platformed from other sites. We examine this decision by Silicon Valley , as well as the domestic terror laws being pushed by Democrats, as some warn that recent events could be used to increase authoritarianism and expand the surveillance state.

You can't separate Silicon Valley giants from the security state, Welcome to Crazyville

William Dorritt 4 hours ago remove link

ADL-FBI 'liaison' revives COintelpro

Federal Bureau of Investigation and the corresponding regional offices of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith ( ADL ). But, the FBI is running a coverup of the full dimensions of its criminal collusion with the ADL , arguing that other documents must be protected because of Executive Orders and because the ADL is an important source.

https://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1990/eirv17n27-19900629/eirv17n27-19900629_058-adl_fbi_liaison_revives_cointelp.pdf

[Jan 22, 2021] Any resemblance to Orwellian 'unpersons' is entirely deliberate.

Jan 22, 2021 | off-guardian.org

Edwige , Jan 15, 2021 3:13 PM

Forget Twitter, Trump can't even be present in a film he made over two decades ago:

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/macaulay-culkin-among-those-who-want-donald-trump-removed-from-home-alone-2

Any resemblance to Orwellian 'unpersons' is entirely deliberate.

[Jan 19, 2021] We are beyond fiction we are well into the rewriting of history

Jan 19, 2021 | off-guardian.org

Moneycircus , Jan 17, 2021 3:47 AM

We are beyond fiction we are well into the rewriting of history.

Edwige , Jan 17, 2021 8:58 AM Reply to Moneycircus

Napoleon said "history is a set of lies that people have agreed upon". This isn't just a pithy aphorism or a metaphor, it's a literal and deep truth.

Same as when another freemason, Mark Twain, said, "if you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed". Master Mason of the Scottish Rite Samuel Clemens was telling the truth but in such a way it would't be perceived as such.

Umbrellas as freemasonic symbols, they're very fond of an arch.

The Trump prject was all about identifying the populists i.e. those plebs who would vote for what the oligarchs don't currently want. 'Populist' is elastic as 'kulak'. They are the ones currently being "impeached", not Trump. Their guilt is assured. Anyone who, for example, fancies going on a march against vaccinations will discover they were in the dock too. Anyone not down with the plan is a violent insurrectionist now and can expect to be policed as such. . .

[Jan 15, 2021] Wealth and Want- Foreword to -Brave New World-

Jan 15, 2021 | www.wealthandwant.com
Foreword to Brave New World, second edition -- circa 1947
Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)

Here's my abridgement:
In the meantime, however, it seems worth while at least to mention the most serious defect in the story, which is this. The Savage is offered only two alternatives, an insane life in Utopia, or the life of a primitive in an Indian village, a life more human in some respects, but in others hardly less queer and abnormal. ... Today I feel no wish to demonstrate that sanity is impossible. ... If I were now to rewrite the book, I would offer the Savage a third alternative. Between the utopian and the primitive horns of his dilemma would lie the possibility of sanity -- a possibility already actualized, to some extent, in a community of exiles and refugees from the Brave New World, living within the borders of the Reservation. In this community economics would be decentralist and Henry-Georgian , politics Kropotkinesque cooperative. Science and technology would be used as though, like the Sabbath, they had been made for man, not (as at present and still more so in the Brave New World) as though man were to be adapted and enslaved to them. Religion would be the conscious and intelligent pursuit of man's Final End, the unitive knowledge of the immanent Tao or Logos, the transcendent Godhead or Brahman. And the prevailing philosophy of life would be a kind of Higher Utilitarianism, in which the Greatest Happiness principle would be secondary to the Final End principle -- the first question to be asked and answered in every contingency of life being: "How will this thought or action contribute to, or interfere with, the achievement, by me and the greatest possible number of other individuals, of man's Final End?"

.... and here is the Foreword, in full:

Chronic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrong-doing. Rolling in the muck is not the best way of getting clean.

Art also has its morality, and many of the rules of this morality are the same as, or at least analogous to, the rules of ordinary ethics. Remorse, for example, is as undesirable in relation to our bad art as it is in relation to our bad behaviour. The badness should be hunted out, acknowledged and, if possible, avoided in the future. To pore over the literary shortcomings of twenty years ago, to attempt to patch a faulty work into the perfection it missed at its first execution, to spend one's middle age in trying to mend the artistic sins committed and bequeathed by that different person who was oneself in youth -- all this is surely vain and futile. And that is why this new Brave New World is the same as the old one. Its defects as a work of art are considerable; but in order to correct them I should have to rewrite the book -- and in the process of rewriting, as an older, other person, I should probably get rid not only of some of the faults of the story, but also of such merits as it originally possessed. And so, resisting the temptation to wallow in artistic remorse, I prefer to leave both well and ill alone and to think about something else.

In the meantime, however, it seems worth while at least to mention the most serious defect in the story, which is this. The Savage is offered only two alternatives, an insane life in Utopia, or the life of a primitive in an Indian village, a life more human in some respects, but in others hardly less queer and abnormal. At the time the book was written this idea, that human beings are given free will in order to choose between insanity on the one hand and lunacy on the other, was one that I found amusing and regarded as quite possibly true. For the sake, however, of dramatic effect, the Savage is often permitted to speak more rationally than his upbringing among the practitioners of a religion that is half fertility cult and half Penitente ferocity would actually warrant. Even his acquaintance with Shakespeare would not in reality justify such utterances. And at the close, of course, he is made to retreat from sanity; his native Penitente -ism reasserts its authority and he ends in maniacal self-torture and despairing suicide. "And so they died miserably ever after" -- much to the reassurance of the amused, Pyrrhonic aesthete who was the author of the fable.

Today I feel no wish to demonstrate that sanity is impossible. On the contrary, though I remain no less sadly certain than in the past that sanity is a rather rare phenomenon, I am convinced that it can be achieved and would like to see more of it. For having said so in several recent books and, above all, for having compiled an anthology of what the sane have said about sanity and the means whereby it can be achieved, I have been told by an eminent academic critic that I am a sad symptom of the failure of an intellectual class in time of crisis. The implication being, I suppose, that the professor and his colleagues are hilarious symptoms of success. The benefactors of humanity deserve due honour and commemoration. Let us build a Pantheon for professors. It should be located among the ruins of one of the gutted cities of Europe or Japan, and over the entrance to the ossuary I would inscribe, in letters six or seven feet high, the simple words: SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF THE WORLD'S EDUCATORS. SI MONUMENTUM REQUIRIS CIRCUMSPICE.

But to return to the future . . . If I were now to rewrite the book, I would offer the Savage a third alternative. Between the utopian and the primitive horns of his dilemma would lie the possibility of sanity -- a possibility already actualized, to some extent, in a community of exiles and refugees from the Brave New World, living within the borders of the Reservation. In this community economics would be decentralist and Henry-Georgian, politics Kropotkinesque cooperative. Science and technology would be used as though, like the Sabbath, they had been made for man, not (as at present and still more so in the Brave New World) as though man were to be adapted and enslaved to them. Religion would be the conscious and intelligent pursuit of man's Final End, the unitive knowledge of the immanent Tao or Logos, the transcendent Godhead or Brahman. And the prevailing philosophy of life would be a kind of Higher Utilitarianism, in which the Greatest Happiness principle would be secondary to the Final End principle -- the first question to be asked and answered in every contingency of life being: "How will this thought or action contribute to, or interfere with, the achievement, by me and the greatest possible number of other individuals, of man's Final End?"

Brought up among the primitives, the Savage (in this hypothetical new version of the book) would not be transported to Utopia until he had had an opportunity of learning something at first hand about the nature of a society composed of freely co-operating individuals devoted to the pursuit of sanity. Thus altered, Brave New World would possess artistic and (if it is permissible to use so large a word in connection with a work of fiction) a philosophical completeness, which in its present form it evidently lacks.

But Brave New World is a book about the future and, whatever its artistic or philosophical qualities, a book about the future can interest us only if its prophecies look as though they might conceivably come true. From our present vantage point, fifteen years further down the inclined plane of modern history, how plausible do its prognostications seem? What has happened in the painful interval to confirm or invalidate the forecasts of 1931?

One vast and obvious failure of foresight is immediately apparent. Brave New World contains no reference to nuclear fission. That it does not is actually rather odd, for the possibilities of atomic energy had been a popular topic of conversation for years before the book was written. My old friend, Robert Nichols, had even written a successful play about the subject, and I recall that I myself had casually mentioned it in a novel published in the late twenties. So it seems, as I say, very odd that the rockets and helicopters of the seventh century of Our Ford should not have been powered by disintegrating nuclei. The oversight may not be excusable; but at least it can be easily explained. The theme of Brave New World is not the advancement of science as such; it is the advancement of science as it affects human individuals. The triumphs of physics, chemistry and engineering are tacitly taken for granted. The only scientific advances to be specifically described are those involving the application to human beings of the results of future research in biology, physiology and psychology. It is only by means of the sciences of life that the quality of life can be radically changed. The sciences of matter can be applied in such a way that they will destroy life or make the living of it impossibly complex and uncomfortable; but, unless used as instruments by the biologists and psychologists, they can do nothing to modify the natural forms and expressions of life itself. The release of atomic energy marks a great revolution in human history, but not (unless we blow ourselves to bits and so put an end to history) the final and most searching revolution.

This really revolutionary revolution is to be achieved, not in the external world, but in the souls and flesh of human beings. Living as he did in a revolutionary period, the Marquis de Sade very naturally made use of this theory of revolutions in order to rationalize his peculiar brand of insanity. Robespierre had achieved the most superficial kind of revolution, the political. Going a little deeper, Babeuf had attempted the economic revolution. Sade regarded himself as the apostle of the truly revolutionary revolution, beyond mere politics and economics -- the revolution in individual men, women and children, whose bodies were henceforward to become the common sexual property of all and whose minds were to be purged of all the natural decencies, all the laboriously acquired inhibitions of traditional civilization. Between sadism and the really revolutionary revolution there is, of course, no necessary or inevitable connection. Sade was a lunatic and the more or less conscious goal of his revolution was universal chaos and destruction. The people who govern the Brave New World may not be sane (in what may be called the absolute sense of the word); but they are not madmen, and their aim is not anarchy but social stability. It is in order to achieve stability that they carry out, by scientific means, the ultimate, personal, really revolutionary revolution. But meanwhile we are in the first phase of what is perhaps the penultimate revolution. Its next phase may be atomic warfare, in which case we do not have to bother with prophecies about the future. But it is conceivable that we may have enough sense, if not to stop fighting altogether, at least to behave as rationally as did our eighteenth-century ancestors. The unimaginable horrors of the Thirty Years War actually taught men a lesson, and for more than a hundred years the politicians and generals of Europe consciously resisted the temptation to use their military resources to the limits of destructiveness or (in the majority of conflicts) to go on fighting until the enemy was totally annihilated. They were aggressors, of course, greedy for profit and glory; but they were also conservatives, determined at all costs to keep their world intact, as a going concern. For the last thirty years there have been no conservatives; there have been only nationalistic radicals of the right and nationalistic radicals of the left. The last conservative statesman was the fifth Marquess of Lansdowne; and when he wrote a letter to the the Times , suggesting that the First World War should be concluded with a compromise, as most of the wars of the eighteenth century had been, the editor of that once conservative journal refused to print it. The nationalistic radicals had their way, with the consequences that we all know --Bolshevism, Fascism, inflation, depression, Hitler, the Second World War, the ruin of Europe and all but universal famine.

Assuming, then, that we are capable of learning as much from Hiroshima as our forefathers learned from Magdeburg, we may look forward to a period, not indeed of peace, but of limited and only partially ruinous warfare. During that period it may be assumed that nuclear energy will be harnessed to industrial uses. The result, pretty obviously, will be a series of economic and social changes unprecedented in rapidity and completeness. All the existing patterns of human life will be disrupted and new patterns will have to be improvised to conform with the nonhuman fact of atomic power. Procrustes in modern dress, the nuclear scientist will prepare the bed on which mankind must lie; and if mankind doesn't fit -- well, that will be just too bad for mankind. There will have to be some stretching and a bit of amputation -- the same sort of stretching and amputations as have been going on ever since applied science really got into its stride, only this time they will be a good deal more drastic than in the past. These far from painless operations will be directed by highly centralized totalitarian governments. Inevitably so; for the immediate future is likely to resemble the immediate past, and in the immediate past rapid technological changes, taking place in a mass-producing economy and among a population predominantly propertyless, have always tended to produce economic and social confusion. To deal with confusion, power has been centralized and government control increased. It is probable that all the world's governments will be more or less completely totalitarian even before the harnessing of atomic energy; that they will be totalitarian during and after the harnessing seems almost certain. Only a large-scale popular movement toward decentralization and self-help can arrest the present tendency toward statism. At present there is no sign that such a movement will take place.

There is, of course, no reason why the new totalitarianisms should resemble the old. Government by clubs and firing squads, by artificial famine, mass imprisonment and mass deportation, is not merely inhumane (nobody cares much about that nowadays), it is demonstrably inefficient and in an age of advanced technology, inefficiency is the sin against the Holy Ghost. A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude. To make them love it is the task assigned, in present-day totalitarian states, to ministries of propaganda, news- paper editors and schoolteachers. But their methods are still crude and unscientific. The old Jesuits' boast that, if they were given the schooling of the child, they could answer for the man's religious opinions, was a product of wishful thinking. And the modern pedagogue is probably rather less efficient at conditioning his pupils' reflexes than were the reverend fathers who educated Voltaire. The greatest triumphs of propaganda have been accomplished, not by doing something, but by refraining from doing. Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth. By simply not mentioning certain subjects, by lowering what Mr. Churchill calls an "iron curtain" between the masses and such facts or arguments as the local political bosses regard as undesirable, totalitarian propagandists have influenced opinion much more effectively than they could have done by the most eloquent denunciations, the most compelling of logical rebuttals. But silence is not enough. If persecution, liquidation and the other symptoms of social friction are to be avoided, the positive sides of propaganda must be made as effective as the negative. The most important Manhattan Projects of the future will be vast government-sponsored enquiries into what the politicians and the participating scientists will call "the problem of happiness" -- in other words, the problem of making people love their servitude. Without economic security, the love of servitude cannot possibly come into existence; for the sake of brevity, I assume that the all-powerful executive and its managers will succeed in solving the problem of permanent security. But security tends very quickly to be taken for granted. Its achievement is merely a superficial, external revolution. The love of servitude cannot be established except as the result of a deep, personal revolution in human minds and bodies. To bring about that revolution we require, among others, the following discoveries and inventions.

All things considered it looks as though Utopia were far closer to us than anyone, only fifteen years ago, could have imagined. Then, I projected it six hundred years into the future. Today it seems quite possible that the horror may be upon us within a single century. That is, if we refrain from blowing ourselves to smithereens in the interval. Indeed, unless we choose to decentralize and to use applied science, not as the end to which human beings are to be made the means, but as the means to producing a race of free individuals, we have only two alternatives to choose from: either a number of national, militarized totalitarianisms, having as their root the terror of the atomic bomb and as their consequence the destruction of civilization (or, if the warfare is limited, the perpetuation of militarism); or else one supranational totalitarianism, called into existence by the social chaos resulting from rapid technological progress in general and the atomic revolution in particular, and developing, under the need for efficiency and stability, into the welfare-tyranny of Utopia. You pays your money and you takes your choice.

-O-

You might also want to look at somaweb's piece, Aldous Huxley: The Author and his Times - http://somaweb.org/w/huxbio.html

[Jan 15, 2021] Huxley's Warning- Totalitarianism in the 21st Century by T.R. Clancy

Jan 12, 2021 | www.americanthinker.com

me title=

In the foreword to the 1946 edition of his novel, Brave New World , Aldous Huxley anticipated the continued emergence, perhaps in novel forms, of statist totalitarianism:

There is, of course, no reason why the new totalitarianisms should resemble the old. Government by clubs and firing squads, by artificial famine, mass imprisonment and mass deportation, is not merely inhumane (nobody cares much about that nowadays), it is demonstrably inefficient and in an age of advanced technology, inefficiency is the sin against the Holy Ghost. A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude. To make them love it is the task assigned, in present-day totalitarian states, to ministries of propaganda, news-paper editors and schoolteachers. But their methods are still crude and unscientific.

Because, in 1946, the world had yet to witness the horrors of Red China, North Korea, Cuba, and Cambodia, Huxley guessed wrong that artificial famines, mass imprisonment, and political executions would go out of fashion. Totalitarianism is impossible without brute violence. And, from our brave new world of 2021, where Big Tech's promiscuous deployment of tools like Machine Learning Fairness and shadow banning prevent users' exposure to wrongthink, his estimation of propaganda methods as "crude and unscientific" is badly out of date.

But how chilling is Huxley's prescience about propaganda ministers, news editors, and schoolteachers training generations of serfs to willingly obey "political bosses and their army of managers"?

https://lockerdome.com/lad/9371484590420070?pubid=ld-8832-1542&pubo=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.americanthinker.com&rid=www.americanthinker.com&width=610

Just like the truism that "generals always fight the last war," Huxley's point that there's "no reason why the new totalitarianisms should resemble the old" calls for both vigilance and imagination on our part; our next totalitarian enemy isn't limited to patterns of twentieth-century Nazism or Soviet-style Communism.

For instance, the suffocating blanket of censorship and suppression of free speech, which seems to defy any constitutional remedy because it's not directly traceable to government action, remains a problem without an obvious solution. Regardless, it's an open secret that the corporate executives in media, Big Tech, and Hollywood managing this suppression are acting on behalf of a single political party -- a party that, due in large part to that interference and suppression now have near total control of the federal government. Townhall's Matt Vespa quotes even a liberal reporter, Michael Tracey, warning that the "absolute authoritarian lunacy" of Twitter's decision to ban President Trump isn't about "'safety,' it's about purposely inflating a threat in order to assert political and cultural dominance." Warns Tracey, "The new corporate authoritarian liberal-left monoculture is going to be absolutely ruthless -- and in 12 days it is merging with the state ." [My italics].

Glenn Greenwald, another committed progressive, also complains " that political censorship has 'contaminated virtually every mainstream centre-left political organization, academic institution and newsroom.'" In October, Greenwald, co-founder of The Intercept news site, resigned after they refused to publish his article about Joe Biden and Hunter's shocking influence-peddling, unless Greenwald first removed "critical points against the Democratic candidate."

In reality, standing alone with election fraud notwithstanding , last October's lockstep decision by an entire news industry to suppress the starkly headline-worthy scandals around Hunter Biden's laptop, along with all other negative stories about Joe Biden, accounts directly for 17% of Biden voters who would have abandoned him " had they known the facts about one or more of these news stories." Because those lost votes "would have changed the outcome in all six of the swing states won by Joe Biden," re-electing Trump, burying those stories was first-degree election interference.

Huxley foresaw this, too:

The greatest triumphs of propaganda have been accomplished, not by doing something, but by refraining from doing. Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth. By simply not mentioning certain subjects, by lowering what Mr. Churchill calls an "iron curtain" between the masses and such facts or arguments as the local political bosses regard as undesirable, totalitarian propagandists have influenced opinion much more effectively than they could have done by the most eloquent denunciations, the most compelling of logical rebuttals.

In 2020 alone, news outlets systematically misinformed, or kept uninformed, scores of millions of voters whose only news sources are either mainstream media or the occasional de-contextualized sound bite. Corporate news, in addition to disappearing the Hunter Biden story:

But Fake News is only as powerful as its consumers are gullible. Knowing that, PJMedia's Stephen Kruiser was able to predict in advance that a Biden win would be "the complete triumph of decades of public education indoctrination ," which is no longer education, anyway, but "more of a leftist catechism class." Journalist William Haupt III reports that 12 years of Common Core "has resulted in 51 percent of our youth preferring socialism to democracy." It's also why "[t]wo thirds of the millennials believe America is a racist and sexist country and 40 percent agree America is 'the most unequal society in the world.'" In fact, in 2011 Chuck Rogér traced this decline to the sixties, when teachers' colleges began churning out "[s]ocial justice-indoctrinated teachers [who] instill resentment in 'non-dominant' (minority) children and guilt in 'dominant' (white) children. Judging by the abundance of guilt-ridden white Americans, the tactic is working its magic well." At present a reported 3,500 classrooms across fifty states are incorporating the New York Times ' specious 1619 Project , which teaches that every accomplishment in America's history came out of slavery . The purpose of this all this falsified history? Not education, but more generations of Americans "unable to discern fact from fiction ."

Now that progressives have complete control of Washington, they'll escalate their lies -- of commission, and especially of omission -- to gain a tighter and more permanent grip. Still, Truth remains their real enemy. It explains social media's current blitz of de-platforming conservatives, trying to drop an "iron curtain," just as Huxley predicted, to separate the people from undesirable facts.

Likewise, fidelity to truth is our best defense; that, and continuing to refuse their lies. That's one positive action Solzhenitsyn was able to offer his comrades who felt powerless against the repressive Soviet system, "the most perceptible of its aspects" being lies: "Personal non-participation in lies. Though lies conceal everything, though lies embrace everything, but not with any help from me."

T.R. Clancy looks at the world from Dearborn, Michigan. You can email him at trclancy@yahoo.com .

Image: John Collier

Help Support American Thinker

In today's climate of political correctness and economic uncertainty, ad revenue only goes so far to keep an independent voice like AmericanThinker.com going. If you enjoy our articles, please consider supporting us with a direct contribution of as much or as little as you can give. Your donation will ensure that we continue to bring great pieces from our outstanding columnists.

[Jan 15, 2021] If Orwell had seen what's so popular now

Jan 15, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Now Voyager 1 hour ago

If Orwell had done what's so popular now and written a prequel to 1984 he would pretty much have described us.

amaericeltoi 1 hour ago

Huxley's vision seems more likely than Orwell's. Of course both dystopias have intrusive governments, but Huxley's view of the technological aspects of the oppression were much more prophetic. Genetic engineering, mass drugging, and planned consumption/consumerist economics being the key to the planned technocracy. The evidence may be the widely heralded use of genetic manipulation, unparalleled "pushing" of drugs to control every aspect of emotional/intellectual well being and subtle but effective marketing through data mining.

I'm saving my Complete Works of Shakespeare and laying low . . .Brave New World be hanged!

[Jan 15, 2021] Collected works of Geroge Orwell. Download for free

Jan 15, 2021 | www.fadedpage.com

Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950), who used the pen name George Orwell, was an English novelist, essayist, journalist and critic. His work is marked by lucid prose, awareness of social injustice, opposition to totalitarianism, and outspoken support of democratic socialism.

Orwell wrote literary criticism, poetry, fiction, and polemical journalism. He is perhaps best known for his dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) and the allegorical novella Animal Farm (1945). His non-fiction works, including The Road to Wigan Pier (1937), documenting his experience of working class life in the north of England, and Homage to Catalonia (1938), an account of his experiences in the Spanish Civil War, are widely acclaimed, as are his essays on politics, literature, language, and culture. In 2008, The Times ranked him second on a list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945".

Orwell's work continues to influence popular and political culture, and the term Orwellian -- descriptive of totalitarian or authoritarian social practices -- has entered the language together with many of his neologisms, including, but not limited to, cold war, Big Brother, Thought Police, Room 101, memory hole, doublethink, and thoughtcrime.--Wikipedia.

[Jan 15, 2021] A Message To Anyone Who Feels Like 'Winston' In Orwell's 1984 by Simon Black

Jan 15, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Simon Black via SovereignMan.com,

"The ideal set up by the Party was something huge, terrible, and glittering... all thinking the same thoughts and shouting the same slogans, perpetually working, fighting, triumphing, persecuting - three hundred million people all with the same face."

That was a quote from George Orwell's seminal work 1984 - a masterpiece that describes life in a totalitarian state that demands blind obedience.

The 'Party' controlled everything - the economy, daily life, and even the truth. In Orwell's 1984 , "the heresy of heresies was common sense."

"Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered."

"And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right."

If you were ever caught committing a thoughtcrime -- dissenting from the Party for even an instant– then "your name was removed from the registers, every record of everything you had ever done was wiped out, your one-time existence was denied and then forgotten."

Now, our world obviously hasn't become quite as extreme as Orwell's dystopian vision. But Big Tech, Big Media, and Big Government certainly seem to be giving it their best effort.

70,000 thought criminals have already been purged from Twitter. Facebook and Reddit are feverishly removing user content. Apple, Google, and Amazon have banned entire apps and platforms.

Undoubtedly there is plenty of wacky content all over the Internet– misinformation, ignorance, rage, hate, violence, and just plain stupidity.

But these moves by the Big Tech companies aren't about violence. If they were, they would have deleted tens of thousands of accounts over the last few years– like the mostly peaceful BLM activist who Tweeted "white people may have to die".

Or the countless others who have advocated for violent uprisings against the police

Then, of course, there's the #assassinatetrump and #killtrump hashtags that has Twitter has allowed since at least 2016. Or the #killallmen hashtag that's allowed on Twitter and Instagram.

This is not about violence. It's about ideology. If you hold different beliefs than the 'Party', then you risk being canceled or 'de-platformed' by Big Tech.

Icons like Ron Paul– who spent years criticizing the current administration's monetary and national defense policies, and had nothing to do with the Capitol, have been suspended or locked out of their Facebook pages.

The hammer has dropped, and it is now obvious, beyond any doubt, that you better watch what you say– your livelihood, your social life, and your safety may just depend on it.

Or else, you will be purged, canceled, deleted from the Internet, denied payment processing by Visa, PayPal, and Stripe, and expelled from domain registrars like GoDaddy.

The message is clear: behave and think exactly as we tell you, or you will lose everything you have worked for, in the blink of an eye.

Sure, the 'Party' may give lip service to tolerance and unity. As long as you fall in line. Otherwise it's more rage and ridicule.

They act like you're a crazy person because you have completely legitimate questions and concerns– whether about Covid lockdowns, censorship, media misinformation, etc.

It's extraordinary that after so much deliberate misinformation and bias, the media still expects people to take them seriously. CNN seems to believe that think anyone who doubts their credibility is a 'conspiracy theorist.'

All of these trends are probably making a lot of people very nervous. Even scared. Despair has undoubtedly set in, much like in Winston Smith, the main character in Orwell's 1984.

So, for all the Winstons out there, the most important thing right now is to remain rational. As human beings we tend to make terrible decisions when we're scared, sad, or angry.

Have confidence in knowing that you have MUCH more control over your own life, livelihood, and future than they want to you believe.

But you absolutely will have to make some deliberate, potentially difficult decisions.

For example, if you're fed up with Big Tech, you can de-Google your life. No one is holding a gun to your head to have a Facebook account or use gmail. There are plenty of other options out there that we'll discuss in future letters.

More importantly, you might find that your hometown isn't safe anymore– especially if you live in a big city controlled by politicians intoxicated on their Covid powers.

It's really time to consider your immediate environment – if the local schools are brainwashing your kids, the dictatorial health officials shutting down your business, or nosy neighbors ready to turn you into the Gestapo for having family over for the holidays, then you might think about moving.

That might simply mean moving a few miles to a new county. Or a new state/province. Or potentially overseas. We'll help provide you with information on plenty of options.

It might also be time to reconsider some of your business infrastructure– to have backup web servers and payment processors, for example, if you have an online business.

It might be time to consider some new financial options as well, lest the banks jump on the band wagon and start 'canceling' accounts for heretics.

But that's the silver lining: we've never had more alternatives than now. Everything– technology platforms, financial institutions, and even our personal residence– it's all replaceable. All of it.

We have never had more control over our own privacy, data, livelihood, and environment as long as you have the willingness to take action.


2banana 2 hours ago remove link

GAB and Brave browsers,

rumble and bitchute video,

Signal for voice and messaging,

Session for messaging,

Epoch times for news,

Fastmail and ProtonMail for email,

Duchduckgo and dogpile for search,

And use a paid VPN like private internet access

Leave the phone at home as often as you can and pay cash.

Southern_Boy 1 hour ago (Edited) remove link

Use https, not http exclusively and don't use any web site that won't take it.

Fastmail is owned by Opera and its mail servers are located in the US, so it will not protect you from subpoenas.

The GAB browser is called Dissenter.

Consider TOR for infrequent forays into the "dark web".

Don't forget that BitCoin (BTC) is traceable.

Use a free version of CCLEANER after every browser session to erase as much of your tracks as you can.

Signal is a suspect because of its controlled ownership community

Using the same vendor for VPN as Anti-Virus is against IT security best practices

Paying for anything with your bank card is a red flag. Whoever you give your credit card to now has your identity, including ZeroHedge. Consider creating an LLC or other identity (preferably offshore) to fund a "burner" credit card or get a refillable debit card that you can fill up using cash. Then you can pay for VPN, email and paid content subscription services using an assumed name or LLC cover name. Assume that any payment to any tech service with your personal card will be used for identification purposes.

Pay with money orders if possible.

Change cellular phone companies every 1 to two years. Avoid data usage on cellular phone, consider using multiple WiFi hotspots for calls.

Consider 2-3 cheap used phones with cheap, pay as you go services and swap them regularly and randomly.

Do not have contact lists on your cell phone and reset to factory settings every 6 months to wipeout any data.

Reload from bare metal your laptop or desktop PC OS every 6 months.

Send random gibberish as an encrypted email every month or so and check if it's unusually slow to be received or if any vendor calls or asks you about anything. If they do, you are being tracked. There are no coincidences.

Make infrequent but regular phone calls with your multiple phones to law enforcement, federal "three letter agency" main switchboards, politicians and random people. Just tell anyone who answers it was a mistake and an improperly dialed number. If you get hold music, then stay on as long as you can because traffic analysis will not know if your actually talking to someone or not. If anyone is investigating or tracking you, your signals traffic (CDR) will automatically confound them and involve unwanted parties that will confound and scare the hounds.

If you are technically competent, consider getting any open source product you use and then compile it yourself after reviewing the source. Check for hidden open doors or reporting communications that aren't needed.

Fateful Destiny the Book 2 hours ago

1984 was prophetic for its time, but Fateful Destiny is the new dystopian benchmark novel for what is to come. Get yours now: https://amzn.to/3owM5Sh

TheLastMan 1 hour ago

The media filter is dominant. Control the narrative, control the world. The official narratives are perpetually meshed into daily consciousness. You must know it is literally spellbinding.

Similar dangers exist on alt media sites like zh. Beware the narrative. Look for at least three sides to every story - his side her side and maybe the truth

OpenEyes 1 hour ago

As much as possible, now is the time to start 'going grey' (if you haven't already started).

One example: I see a lot of people, understandably, saying to delete your facebook account, gmail account, twitter account etc. My recommendation, DO NOT do this. You don't think "they" aren't keeping track of those who are doing this, especially right now? By taking those actions you are pinning a big red flag on yourself.

No, my advice, just simply abandon your account. Stop commenting, posting, reading, etc.. simply walk away and stop using those accounts. It will take some time for 'them' to notice that your account is inactive, if they even do. And, an inactive account will likely be treated far less seriously than an actively deleted or cancelled account.

Keep your heads down and your family safe. Best wishes to all.

Misesmissesme 3 hours ago (Edited) remove link

If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face -- forever. - George Orwell: " An Instruction Guide for 2021 "

Cardinal Fang 2 hours ago (Edited)

Like that scene in The Graduate where the guy leans in and tells Dustin Hoffman 'One word...Plastics' I am going to lean in and say 'One word...Wearables'

So Google just completes their acquisition of 'FitBit'...even though the Justice Dept has not finished their anti-trust investigation...

Anyhow, it's all coming clear. The next stage in our Orwellian nightmare is Covid will be the excuse to make you 'wear' a device to prove you are Covid free in some way. It will be your permission slip, plus they can spy on you in real time even if you leave your phone home, because you will not be able to leave your home without your 'Wearable'...

Then, in short order, you will get tired of your 'wearable' and beg for the chip implant.

You will beg to be vaccinated and chipped like sheep.

They literally can't help themselves.

Jim in MN 2 hours ago

All new and improved ankle bracelets!

Only $299.99 and yes, it is required or else.

Batteries, monthly surveillance fees and random fines not included.

Dr.Strangelove 2 hours ago

I just watched 1984 and it is scary similar to the US political environment.

We are all Winston.

SullyLuther 1 hour ago remove link

Huxley will be proven correct. Z O G doesn't need a boot perpetually on our necks, when we are so passive and ignorant.

Workdove PREMIUM 1 hour ago

They just need to make narcotics and psychedelics free and his vision of the future will be complete. Orwell was correct too. We got both.

NIRP-BTFD 3 hours ago

Now, our world obviously hasn't become quite as extreme as Orwell's dystopian vision. But Big Tech, Big Media, and Big Government certainly seem to be giving it their best effort.

This is just the beginning. The technocrats at the WEF are planning to control your thought with chips and brain interfaces. Now tell me what is neuralink that Musk is workign on? I'm sure DARPA has technologcy that can allready do this.

seryanhoj 2 hours ago

It's hard to believe USA is now headed to a society like the worst days of the USSR.

Back in the fifties , paranoid Senator McCarthy used similar extreme methods to cancel all those who he considered to by stealth communist sympathizers, or anyone who had been within 100 feet of one. Ironically his methods resembled those of Joseph Stalin.

He was finally discredited by an outstanding and brave news man who took the risk of persecution by denouncing senator McCarthy's methods as unamerican .

So this kind of thing is not without precedent in USA.

[Jan 14, 2021] FBI is soliciting people to identify people involved with the rumble on Capitol Hill. This is very 1984ish.

Highly recommended!
Jan 14, 2021 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , Jan 14 2021 1:25 utc | 72

Digital Spartacus @66--

IMO, it's a combination of those plus, a la 1984 , and distractions, sports particularly. I was taught early that knowledge is power, then picked up Socrates admonition: The unexamined life is not worth living; which later led to this formula: Gnosis=Logos. Then there's defending against Machiavelli's Prince, which requires knowledge. Plus the Enlightenment-based premises upon which the USA was founded. And most importantly, if you're to be part of a self-governing nation, one must be informed as many Founders observed. I'm well versed on what an ignorant life is like as there was a time from my late teens to my mid 30s when I lived that way, with my 50-60 hour per week job, chasing women and having fun taking precedence. I do often wonder if my efforts are useful. Maybe not so much anymore since the trolls seem to have stopped trying to smear me.

Tom , Jan 14 2021 1:31 utc | 73

FBI is soliciting people to identify people involved with the rumble on Capitol Hill. This is very 1984ish. The FBI must have the best facial recognition software in the land. Really? This is heading to a dark place. (My man of the year is the Trump rebel with the Trump hat waving holding the podium. He would be a rich man if he could get a copyright on that photo. They really had to go this far to catch him? LOL)

https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/washingtondc/news/press-releases/fbi-seeking-information-related-to-violent-activity-at-the-us-capitol-building-010621

[Jan 08, 2021] The proles in 1984's London and today's USA

Jan 08, 2021 | thesaker.is

Ken Leslie on January 06, 2021 , · at 8:17 pm EST/EDT

The proles were more or less happy in 1984's London because they were supplied with cheap food, booze, fags, records and cheap tabloids and pulp books. They had everything they needed (and could afford it) to live their working-class lives and would never rise up – therein lies Winston's frustration – revolution is simply beyond their mental horizon.

Trumproles on the other hand have not been looked after very well by their Very Big Brother and are unhappy – but remain proles – creatures of low consciousness and intelligence and little understanding of the world beyond their fence. "America has most freem in the world! If America goes down, the World is doooomed!" (that was one "patriot's" lowing outside the Capitol). No, old chap, if you dispose of yourselves peacefully, the world will rejoice and thank you forever. Thank you for the music though – some of it will live on forever.

To expect any meaningful revolutionary action from them is a tad optimistic. Even a chaotic mass action is beyond them because they do possess a healthy survival instinct and a certain low cunning which middle-class observers often overlook.

Ultimately of course, if Iranians are our allies, let them enjoy this moment when a tormentor-in-chief of their nation sinks in oblivion.

Poppadop on January 06, 2021 , · at 8:59 pm EST/EDT

Fair points, Ken, but there is another difference between now and "1984" which requires the prole class to have more than "low consciousness and intelligence and little understanding of the world." Orwell wrote, "Everywhere there is the same pyramidal structure, the same worship of a semi-divine leader, the same economy existing by and for continuous warfare When war is continuous there is no such thing as military necessity. Technical progress can cease and the most palpable facts can be denied or disregarded."

The people of Oceania can be ignorant and insane because Eurasia and Eastasia operate on the same level. However, can that be said of today's Russia, China, Iran, etc.? If the "Western" prole class is too far below those opposed to our Orwellian overlords, then the dystopia loses. Yet needing to raise their level makes them liable to oppose the dystopia themselves.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 6:12 am EST/EDT

Perhaps that is what makes things worse. Here in Britain, they would rather let the people go without or risk bad vaccines than talk to Russians about using theirs. And of course the attack on China is exploding. Perhaps they are trying to prevent what you are talking about. If people started to cooperate, there would be no room for the criminals currently ruling the West.

Poppadop on January 07, 2021 , · at 8:38 pm EST/EDT

Yes, Ken, the banker gangsters are trying, and Orwell said they would try, too. "There should be no contact with foreigners If he were allowed contact with foreigners he would discover that they are creatures similar to himself and that most of what he has been told about them is lies."

However, the banksters could not prevent that. Orwell's Eurasia, the Soviet Union, was collapsing, so Brits were needed to help fill the void left by Bolshevik-brand Communists. Orwell's Oceania, which includes the US, was protesting and fragging corrupt officers over the continuous war in Vietnam, so Brits were needed to help build up Orwell's Eastasia, which includes China, as a replacement super-state. Yet as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi recently said, "We don't need a world where China becomes another United States."

If Eastasia is never really coming and Eurasia is never coming back, doesn't it stand to reason that Oceania will likewise fail ?

Cynthia on January 06, 2021 , · at 9:34 pm EST/EDT

You vastly underestimate the working class American's intelligence.Those of all races.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 6:07 am EST/EDT

I am not talking about working-class (although I conflate occasionally) but PROLES that Saker talks about. And trust me, I'm not. Anybody who could have voted for the dismantling of the American industry and social networks under Reagan can't be very bright!

Vladimir on January 06, 2021 , · at 11:50 pm EST/EDT

Hello my friend, what a sad day for the ideal of a democratic and free republic it is. If Americans rise up, it will not be for the sake of Donald Trump or his Presidency. It will be when it is clear that if they don't rise up against tyrants and usurpers, the American Revolution as an ongoing proposition is over for good. There hasn't been enough pain just yet.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 5:51 am EST/EDT

Dear friend,

As somebody whose life has been enriched by American music and other things I wish the American people all the best in their struggle but please ask them to stop bringing immense harm and pain and suffering to the world. American military (thank you for your service) and state apparatus have killed between 30 and 40 million people since the end of WWII (Johan Galtung). In the words of Professor Galtung:

Galtung has stated that the US is a "killer country" guilty of "neo-fascist state terrorism" and compared the US to Nazi Germany for bombing Kosovo during the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia.[26][27]

According to Galtung, the US empire causes "unbearable suffering and resentment" because the "exploiters/ killers/ dominators/ alienators, and those who support the US Empire because of perceived benefits" are engaging in "unequal, non-sustainable, exchange patterns". In an article published in 2004, Galtung predicted that the US empire will "decline and fall" by 2020. He expanded on this hypothesis in his 2009 book titled The Fall of the US Empire – and Then What? Successors, Regionalization or Globalization? US Fascism or US Blossoming?.[28][29]

Do the Americans see this?

Donald Wijsenbek on January 07, 2021 , · at 7:03 am EST/EDT

Hello Ken Leslie, You mention Johan Galtung the Norwegian peace researcher.
Can you give me the exact places where I can find your quotes? especially the quote of about 30 – 40 million people killed by the US State apparatus.
Thank you for putting me in touch with this special man.
Keep safe, Donald

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 7:24 am EST/EDT

Hi, Donald,

I am pretty sure a number of 30 million is mentioned somewhere (and I have exaggerated) but for the time being:

EXCLUSIVE: US has killed over 20 million in 37 countries since end of World War II – Prof. Galtung

https://dailypost.ng/2017/02/06/exclusive-us-killed-13-million-people-since-end-world-war-ii-prof-galtung/

Here for the quotes:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johan_Galtung

Thank you,

Ken

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 8:22 am EST/EDT

For all their unspeakable beastliness, the Germans did their slaughter while fighting (at least some of the time). Most of the deaths caused by the USA have been caused to innocent civilians or vastly inferior opponents. If I were to factor in the risk involved in mass killing and multiply by it, the magnitude of the US crime would at least double.

Vladimir on January 07, 2021 , · at 1:38 pm EST/EDT

Well, I see it for sure, not confident that others will, as Americans as a society have never been particularly self-reflective.

I have an identity though that is grounded in natural and spiritual truths that predate 1776 AD, and will last after America is gone in it's present form. On that note, I say;

Christ is Born, Glorify Him!

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 4:13 pm EST/EDT

Merry Christmas, Vladimir – thank you and all the best!

Serbian girl on January 07, 2021 , · at 2:15 am EST/EDT

Hi Ken,
I don't disagree with your description of the proles, however they are not our enemy.

Our true enemy are the people who act and talk like gentlemen, those who speak of lofty ideals and then use their bombs and cruise missiles to murder civilians halfway across the globe. Give me proles, who mind their own business, any day over those guys.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 5:42 am EST/EDT

Thank you,

Perhaps but I'm not sure why people are convinced that "working-class" Americans – ultra right-wing bordering on fascist can provide a solution. Trump caused more damage to peace than most other criminals-in-chief and these American proles (I'm in so sod the world) have always voted for right-wing reprobates such as Reagan and Bus(c)h. Why should they change now?

John Hagan on January 07, 2021 , · at 5:50 am EST/EDT

I have had recently a severe disagreement with a close friend who was a Australian Viet Nam vet. In his opinion the US is/was the cornerstone of world order and its moral actions over the years has kept the world in order by its muscle.

This is not a light matter as he is friend whith whom I said in reply 'you must be kidding'. Minutes later the divide became real and we have not spoken for a few years. He no doubt saw some things in his time in service that formulated such an opinion and I would hazard a guess he is not Robinson Crusoe in that regard.

So neither of us is young and we both have travelled the world for many, many years since with a similar view on most things moral or newsworthy.

So the destruction of empire I found to my cost has ramifications on a personal level if not otherwise.

Remember for artists with limited attention span the personal is often more critical than the general.

Davi on January 07, 2021 , · at 7:25 am EST/EDT

Agreed Serbian girl, Or distill it a bit further; give me normal humans over psychopaths any day.

Ugh... on January 07, 2021 , · at 4:51 am EST/EDT

The dismantling of a neo-liberal world order from within the US would have a profound effect on the rest, who espouse the same ideology. Also, the economy of the US is intertwined with a large portion of the world. A US collapse will have a negative effect on many people, just as the collapse of the Soviet system devastated the average person who lived within its system. Yes, the world is tired of their perversions, stupidity, and violence inflicted upon other nations. What should be hoped for is a more peaceful slide into a multipolar economic system and a return of US Constitutionalists to power. Most regular people have committed no crimes and shouldn't suffer from the crimes of corrupt, spineless scum that have made a mockery of their own nation States.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 5:35 am EST/EDT

Yes, Ugh, and this calls for a slow peaceful implosion and not a "revolution" which could bring another madman to power. No?

Ugh... on January 07, 2021 , · at 6:46 am EST/EDT

Last thing the world needs is another madman in power. The famous "mad" leaders were able to come to power due to grave injustices. Usually, from a second State that has an axe to grind. Violence begots violence for sure. I don't know if US has the environment for a classic type of madman to grab power. Though it can be argued most of their modern leaders are mad for starting criminal wars and deserve punishment. However, no use leader has the spine or charisma of such leaders. I agree with you, though the likelihood of it is less likely in my opinion. As for a soft implosion and a rebuild with the true vales that united all people of the country be reestablished. It's always darkest before the dawn.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 8:18 am EST/EDT

Despite its Satanic foreign policy since WWII (I mean this literally – the demon of the Third Reich simply swapped bodies), I don't think that anybody really wishes ill to the broad palette of humanity that inhabits the USA. What we do ask is for a good slap that will awaken them to the harm their sons (and increasingly daughters) have caused to the world (thank you for your disservice!).

Fortunately, it appears that the slap will be self-administered – although I can see the CIA troglodytes blaming China and Russia for the yesterday's farce.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 5:33 am EST/EDT

Dear all,

Thank you – I don't mean to disrespect any group of people but really don't believe that some kind of revolution can come from this particular demographic. It is the curse of successful propaganda – they believe so much in "America the exceptional" that it is difficult for them to try and dismantle it. Please look at the clashes – it's nothing like real or colour revolutions – lots of swearing and "patriotism" and then home to wide screen TVs and narrow beer bottles.

Second, what would be the cause of the revolution? That the USA has reached its natural apex and is now slowly sinking? Why, the British and the Soviets could have done the same but did spare the world their drama – latter at a considerable cost. I have a feeling that many (me included) buy into the "exceptional" lie – which has now come to haunt the Americans. Yes, they were betrayed but they enjoyed every minute of it while the rest of the world groaned under their sanctions and bombs.

Disaffected on January 07, 2021 , · at 7:51 am EST/EDT

Agreed. We don't need a revolution, we need a resignation. Resigned to the new facts on the ground in the 21st century. The US was never the one "indispensable nation" that we were all led to believe, but regardless of that, we're certainly not anymore. We need to resign ourselves to that fact and then demand that we resign from the odious task of pretending to be the glorious imperialist hegemon that our politicians and lying media tell us we are. No more glorious leaders and no more delusional ideas about ever becoming "great again." The entire world will be better off once that happens, and who knows, the rest of the world might even still be willing to forgive us our multitude of sins committed these past many years if we do it now. But that's going to take a level of maturity, fortitude, and humility that's currently nowhere in evidence.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 8:24 am EST/EDT

Dear Disaffected,

Thank you for a mature and forward-looking post. That is exactly the posture the Russians assumed and are coping ok. If there is even a small number of American people who believe this – there is hope.

Ken Leslie on January 07, 2021 , · at 9:51 am EST/EDT

Shame that most people will ignore your deep insight. To survive, America must join the world as an equal – prepared to prosper and suffer like everybody else. Otherwise the suffering will be Boschian and like nothing we have ever seen.

[Jan 01, 2021] The age of the wokeTard and progressive / liberal Jingoism is has arrived.

Jan 01, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com


1 play_arrow

San Pedro 16 hours ago remove link

The age of the wokeTard and progressive / liberal Jingoism is has arrived.

Procrastin8 4 hours ago remove link

See my above comments about Gulag Archipelago. Look at Soviet history. Many of the original revolutionaries were assassinated, or merely swept aside if they were very lucky. The Soviet Union managed to imprison on flimsy pretexts, work to death at slave labor, or just shoot, millions of their own citizens. And for what? To prop up a bloodthirsty, paranoid regime, fearful that any person could be an enemy, that every shadow contained a lurking threat. Mapped to our modern world: if things got that bad here (let's hope they don't), even if you were the world's best Democrat, you supported and contributed to the campaigns, you marched with MLK and BLM, whatever, when the time comes, they will come for you and none of your past will be of any avail. The mere fact that you are White, or if you were Black, you once voiced approval of Whites, will be enough to condemn you.

[Jan 01, 2021] I've just finished Solzhenitsyn's famous Gulag Archipelago. Once in the prison camp, a prisoner may become convinced that everyone else is guilty; that he is the only innocent man

Jan 01, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com


play_arrow

Procrastin8 5 hours ago (Edited)

Your opening sentence reminds me of something. I've just finished Solzhenitsyn's famous Gulag Archipelago. Once in the prison camp, a prisoner may become convinced that everyone else is guilty; that he is the only innocent man. Gulag should be required reading for everyone. Another prime lesson: no matter your political ideology, no matter how "pure" you were, even if you were a true revolutionary, you are still elibile for being shot/slave labor, once the bad guys get into power (Lenin, Stalin played these roles in the Soviet Union.) At some point, any pretense of law or civil procedure is tossed aside. Steal vegetables from a job site because you're starving. Theft of state property, ten years. Did you make a off-color joke or comment about the Leader in an unguarded moment? Anti-Soviet agitation. Ten years. Were you captured by the enemy during the war? Then clearly you were collaborating with the enemy. They could get you on any pretense, or just because they had a quota to fill that month.

"Can't happen here?" It already is -- in slow motion.

[Jan 01, 2021] Biden's Brave New (Woke) World

Jan 01, 2021 | www.zerohedge.com

GlassHouse101 17 hours ago (Edited) remove link

They are going after conservatives now, as "dangerous vigilantes". My RINO governor today canceled his inauguration, due to "fear of right wing protestors", and "my family's safety comes first". . . Re-education camps are next, folks.

ZENDOG 17 hours ago (Edited)

Is it time, for vigilante justice ????

Because the ussa DOJ, is nowhere to be found.

NoDebt 17 hours ago

Saw this coming a ways off. That's one of the reasons I registered as an Independent in 2016 (the other was the Rs shameful lack of support for their own presidential candidate). This year I might just flip to Democrat.

Not that it matters for voting reasons because I'm never participating in that fraudulent process again.

But, one must consider that some "political camouflage" might be advisable in certain areas of the country.

Procrastin8 4 hours ago

See my above comments about Gulag Archipelago. Look at Soviet history. Many of the original revolutionaries were assassinated, or merely swept aside if they were very lucky. The Soviet Union managed to imprison on flimsy pretexts, work to death at slave labor, or just shoot, millions of their own citizens. And for what? To prop up a bloodthirsty, paranoid regime, fearful that any person could be an enemy, that every shadow contained a lurking threat. Mapped to our modern world: if things got that bad here (let's hope they don't), even if you were the world's best Democrat, you supported and contributed to the campaigns, you marched with MLK and BLM, whatever, when the time comes, they will come for you and none of your past will be of any avail. The mere fact that you are White, or if you were Black, you once voiced approval of Whites, will be enough to condemn you.

[Dec 17, 2020] No worries

Dec 17, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

ak74 , Dec 16 2020 20:05 utc | 152

No worries.

The Biden regime will be a mass murdering war criminal American regime--just as surely as the Trump regime is a mass murdering war criminal American regime.

In an Orwellian democracy like the Land of the Free™ (or other capitalist nations), changes in the ruling political party are used to disguise continuation of the same malignant America Way of Life itself.

Indeed, there is only one political party in the USA: that of the American Evil Empire.

And all the fake "partisan political differences" exist only to promote America's Fake Democracy in general.

Did Your Favorite War Criminal Win?
https://leecamp.com/moc-9-did-your-favorite-war-criminal-win/

Bomb Libya and take its oil: Biden budget chief pick Neera Tanden agreed with Trump
https://thegrayzone.com/2020/11/30/trump-neera-tanden-libya-oil/

After Trump leaves, US and Israeli aggression against Iran remains
https://thegrayzone.com/2020/12/04/after-trump-leaves-us-and-israeli-aggression-against-iran-remains/

PATRICK LAWRENCE: Empire with a Human Face
https://www.greanvillepost.com/2020/12/16/patrick-lawrence-empire-with-a-human-face/

A Biden Administration Will Be Dominated by More U.S. Aggression
https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/11/23/biden-administration-will-be-dominated-by-more-us-aggression/

VIDEO: Top Biden advisors Flournoy and Blinken promise smarter, more secretive permanent war policy
https://thegrayzone.com/2020/11/20/biden-advisors-flournoy-blinken-permanent-war/

[Dec 10, 2020] The past was erased, the erasure forgotten, the lie became truth.

Dec 10, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Tested 'Positive' For COVID-19- Be Sure To Ask This Question - Zero Hedge


4 hours ago remove link

The past was erased, the erasure forgotten, the lie became truth.

George Orwell - 1984

[Nov 23, 2020] An Invitation to Seeking Truth in a Country of Lies OffGuardian

Nov 23, 2020 | off-guardian.org

My concerns have been those of many writers throughout the ages -- poets, rebels, journalists, philosophers, passionate writers of every stripe, desperados for truth and a peaceful world of love and kindness. Those I have admired the most, believers or unbelievers -- it is often hard to tell the difference, nor does it matter -- were those who dismissed categories, distinctions, or labels, but who wrote freely because for them to write freely was to live freely and not to be caged by anyone's restrictions as to what they should be saying or how they were saying it.

For them truth was their God, and through the weaving of words down a page they were always seeking to disclose what was hidden from common sight. They used language to open up cracks in the consensus reality that the great poet and writer Kenneth Rexroth called the "social lie":

Since all society is organized in the interest of exploiting classes and since if men knew this they would cease to work and society would fall apart, it has always been necessary, at least since the urban revolutions, for societies to be governed ideologically by a system of fraud."

Indeed, we live in the era of massive fraud where the trans-national wealthy elites, led by the American war and propaganda machine, continue to try to convince the gullible that they are saviors of humanity even as they lie and cheat and murder by the millions.

So what follows are my efforts to unearth the fraud, while celebrating the beauty of life and telling little stories here and there that I hope exemplify its comedy and tragedy. I am always experimenting every time I sit down to write. Not consciously, since I let inspiration guide me. Often, as I think is evident in many pieces, thoughts come to me when walking, and from those initial thoughts comes the path I follow, not knowing exactly where I am headed. Some of these essays are highly intellectual and structured; some, straightforwardly political; others are meanderings that seek to express essential truths I sense in the telling.

... ... ...

The unspeakable is a term coined by the Trappist monk Thomas Merton in the mid-1960s. He meant it to point to a systemic evil that permeates American society that defies speech:

It is the void that contradicts everything that is spoken even before the words are said; the void that gets into the language of public and official declarations at the very moment when they are pronounced, and makes them ring dead with the hollowness of the abyss. It is the void out of which Eichmann drew the punctilious exactitude of his obedience "

It is, in other words, the plague that is us when we live in the nest of the unspeakable as obedient servants of the American Empire. Douglass makes the plague manifest in order to give us hope, and in speaking the unspeakable, he shows us both the radical evil and the redemptive courage that we are all capable of.

[Nov 23, 2020] Orwell's 1984 Is Prophetic -- How Neoliberal Oligarchy is Trying To Erase President Trump Change History by Sara Carter

Nov 23, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Orwell's 1984 Is Prophetic: How Leftists Are Already Trying To Erase President Trump & Change History

Authored by Sara Carter,

I'm literally sickened by the actions of some in the main stream media, leftists and their minions in the education system that are seeking to rewrite history and ostracize anyone that supported President Donald Trump . Regardless of where anyone stands politically, everyone should oppose these un-American tactics and disinformation war against the Commander-in- Chief.

The media, however, along with the help of powerful tech giants, are d oing everything in their power to control the narrative of the Trump administration and by doing so change the history of our nation.

Sharyl Attkinson's book Slanted: How the media taught us to love censorship and hate journalism, lays it out perfectly. She, like others who are concerned about censorship and the media's devolving role in our Republic, compared the situation to George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984. She describes the protagonist in Orwell's book, Winston Smith, whose job is to edit history for the Ministry of Truth. Of course, Orwell naturally was describing a society that was rewriting history with lies and a world where Big Brother was watching everyone.

It is essentially happening to our country now, but not by the dystopian government described by Orwell but by a complex network of ideologists that are now in control of some of the most essential industries to America's freedom.

Look at this headline from Yahoo. It is the first headline from the publication's Friday story revealing Donald Trump Jr's diagnosis with COVID-19: Former reality TV show host's son tests positive for COVID-19 , by Patrick Gomez.

What an insult to the American people and to President Trump. Yes, he is still the president of the United States. What was the point of this headline and others like this but to slowly rewrite history and to erase this President and the administration's achievements.

Benny Johnson is right "the media is already trying to erase the fact that he is President."

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1330197074105802757&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com%2Fpolitical%2Forwells-1984-prophetic-how-leftists-are-already-trying-erase-president-trump-change&siteScreenName=zerohedge&theme=light&widgetsVersion=ed20a2b%3A1601588405575&width=550px

This is a REAL HEADLINE from @Yahoo about @DonaldJTrumpJr testing positive for Coronavirus.

They refer to @realDonaldTrump , the sitting President of the United States as "Former reality TV show host"

The Media is already trying to erase the fact that he is President. pic.twitter.com/IQZewLsd5d

-- Benny (@bennyjohnson) November 21, 2020

This didn't just start after the 2020 election.

This has been happening since Trump became the Republican candidate nominee in 2016.

Think about the last four years of Trump's presidency. Think about the onslaught of lies against him in the media. In fact, the outrageous lies that were perpetrated against Trump, his campaign and the White House before, during and after his 2016 election. The Russia Hoax was truly a conspiracy against the President by former senior Obama Administration officials who didn't want him in office. They weaponized both federal law enforcement and the intelligence community against him and then used the media to spread the lies that were later proven to be false by investigations conducted by those of us who believed in seeking the truth.

This is the truth about the 2020 election: 73 million Americans voted for Trump, the most of any Republican President in history. Moreover, if you, like me, believe that there may be a significant chance that this election was plagued with enough fraudulent behavior that only a thorough investigation could ever uncover, then he may have garnered the most votes of any American President.

If Americans don't start demanding better we will only have ourselves to blame for what will come in our future.

It's not going to end with President Trump. Others will be the target of these actions in what is truly becoming a new dystopian world. Republicans and Democrats alike that don't fit the mold of this new shadow government will meet a similar fate.

The actions of these leftists Marxist ideologues embedded in our nation's schools, combined with left leaning social media platforms and their virulent spread of these unAmerican ideas is what we have been witnessing.

I certainly hope we wake up, expose it and stop the infection before it kills our liberty and shreds our Constitution.

palmereldritch , 12 minutes ago

The Neoliberals could never recognize themselves in the works of Orwell today because that would require critical thinking skills, self-awareness and basic literacy, all things (among others) programmed by their 'education' to be missing from their abilities.

[Sep 29, 2020] The Meaning of War Is Peace, Freedom Is Slavery, and Ignorance Is Strength in Orwell s -1984 by NATALIE FRANK

Notable quotes:
"... I'm not sure that this is an original idea, but I've always thought that people missed the point about 1984 in that it is not about the evils of Government, so much as it is about the the Inner Party. The Government, represented by the Outer Party, is simply a tool that the Inner Party uses to maintain control and implement its agenda. The Inner Party is the real enemy, not the Government per se. The Outer Party is simply a means to an end. Right? ..."
"... Political correctness trying to rewrite history, continuing to try to keep a whole area of our population on a guilt trip (the South) while totally ignoring the warts on the rest of the country, focusing on the wealthy while calling the poor "parasites" are just a few of today's attempts at Doublethink. Something to think about. ..."
"... Excellent, to the point, and very well explained so even I can understand it. Begs an association to current events in America. The Democratic Party comes to mind. This is even more applicable to me since I grew up in socialism/communism in Eastern Europe. Until you know what living under limited freedom means you do not know freedom. ..."
Mar 26, 2020 | owlcation.com

Natalie Frank has a Ph.D. in Clinical psychology. She specializes in Pediatric Psychology and Behavioral Medicine.

At the beginning of the book 1984, these words are presented as the official motto of the nation of Oceania:

War is Peace

Freedom is Slavery

Ignorance is Strength

-- George Orwell, 1984

These slogans were created by an entity known only as "The Party," which consist of those in charge of the country. The words are written in enormous letters on the white pyramid of the Ministry of Truth, which considering that they are obvious contradictions, seems to be an odd place to put them.

The fact that this motto is written on a government building for a department called the Ministry of Truth suggests that the author is trying to convey that these statements are somehow true for the society he has constructed. These are just the first in a series of contradiction written throughout the book and they serve to represent the nature of the society and how it is held together through the way in which these opposites function.

Orwell opened his book in this way on purpose in order to introduce the reader to the concept of Doublethink , which is what allows the people of Oceania to live with constant contradictions in their lives. Doublethink is the ability to hold two opposing ideas in one's mind simultaneously.

The Party develops this ability in it's citizens by undermining their individuality, independence and autonomy and by creating an environment of constant fear through propaganda. In this way, the Party breaks down their ability to think rationally and makes citizens accept and believe anything they tell them, even if it is entirely illogical.

The book is filled with similar contradictions like the ones seen in the opening quote. For example:

These contradictions keeps the citizens constantly off balance, so they are never sure of themselves or each other and must rely on the party for guidance as to how to live their lives.

The fact that the national motto of Oceania is just as contradictory as these other examples emphasizes the success of the Party's campaign of psychological mind control. The government has become able to maintain the apparent veracity of these opposing statements because the functions they serve which make them a reality in the society of Oceania.

What Is the Meaning of "War Is Peace" in 1984 ?

The first slogan is probably the most contradictory of the three. The people of Oceania believe that the saying War is Peace means that in order to have peace one must tolerate the horrors of war. It does not equate the two as the statement might otherwise suggest. The people fully believe that war is bad and peace is good.

Yet, as in real life, the people have come to the understanding that sometimes one must make terrible sacrifices in order to have a peaceful nation. The war does not take place on the soil of Oceania but instead, somewhere far from it so they don't see the horrors of the battle, the destruction, the wounded and dead in front of them. They only hear about it through the daily announcements made by the Party.

While this contradiction may seem like a logical reality at first, it becomes less so when the reader realizes that there is actually no war occurring at all. It is a made up fiction created by the Party just to keep the people in line. It is intended to keep their attention focused elsewhere, so that they do not realize how the Party is controlling their every thought and action.

The motto War is Peace indicates how having a shared enemy unites the people of Oceania and helps them remain on a common course. It gives them something to worry about external to the way the country is being run, that is happening somewhere else. It helps to prevent them from becoming consciously aware of the obvious problems in their own society. This mentality, put in place for the benefit of the Party, gives the people someone other than the government to blame for their problems, making them easier to rule.

A state of constant war demonstrates that people are sacrificing for the greater good of the society, pledging their effort and money to the war, and devoting themselves to their country and government. From the Party's point of view, all of this is good in that the more people that invest in and commit to their nation and government, the fewer problems they will perceive.

This saying focuses the people's attention, preventing them from being consciously aware of the obvious problems in their own society, where they are being actively manipulated and controlled. If people find themselves having thoughts counter to accepted government rhetoric, they can quickly distract themselves by thinking about the war and worrying over the possibility of attack.

What Is the Meaning of "Freedom is Slavery" in 1984 ?

The second motto, Freedom is Slavery, represents the message that the party imparts to the community that anyone who become independent of society's control is bound to be unsuccessful. A society that is based on free will result in chaos and the devolvement of the society. Since the slogan is commutative, if freedom is slavery then slavery is freedom. Here, the Party communicates the message that those who are willing to subjugate themselves to the collective will or the will of the society which by definition is the will of the Party, will be freed from danger and wanting what they can't have. Society defines what is good, what is acceptable, what is desirable. Those who focus on those things and on fulfilling the will of the society will be free from despair and will lack nothing, at least nothing that society, or the Party, condones.

The Party embodies the idea of a paternalistic structure for those who live in Oceania. Hence, the idea of the Government surveilling it's citizens being presented under the guise of "Big Brother." Adherence to the ideals and rules are ensured by this individual, who is presented as a family member and who is supposed to only have the best interests of the people in mind.

In order to survive in this society, the citizens must ignore the clear reality that Big Brother is certainly not a family member showing concern, but is rather the government spying on everything the citizens do in order to control them. The Party even interprets facial gestures and nonverbal communication and the people can be tortured as political prisoners because of behavior interpreted as subversive.

The obvious contradiction here is that it is only by enslaving yourself to the government and whatever they condone that you are free from harm and imprisonment. Freedom in Oceania means the freedom to do and think what the Party wants without deviating from their rules and regulations.

What Is the Meaning of "Ignorance is Strength" in 1984 ?

There is also the need for the citizens to subvert their will and their awareness to accept the contradictions the government puts forth. They are expected to bury the truth and accept irrationality such as is demonstrated in the three statements. Ignorance is therefore strength as it is the willing ignorance of the people who ignore obvious contradictions. They fail to investigate such inconsistencies as a non-existent war with an ever changing enemy.

It is this ignorance that maintains the power of the government and the seeming coherence of the the society. It is only through ignorance that people can find the strength to live in a totalitarian society where the government oppresses them even while communicating to them how fortunate they are.

When first reading these three slogans, most people scratch their heads wondering how conflicts that can arise from equating two opposites. But the idea of contradiction is one of the main themes of the novel. In particular, specific themes include:

All of these themes are contradictory, yet they power the plot of the novel.

Shifting Definitions of Freedom and Enslavement

One idea presented in Orwell's book is expressed in the saying:

"Absolute power corrupts absolutely."

The government has grown to become omnipotent, writing its own version of reality by changing the content of history books, and making the people too fearful to think critically.

The Party is so powerful that when it says 2+2=5, the people accept this and come to mindlessly believe it. When the Party declares that Oceania is at war with Eurasia, they distribute heaps of propaganda and edit records so that the people accept that this is how it is and has always been. When the government then says Oceania is at war with Eastasia and has always been at war with them, the people allow their reality to be changed and accept this as true. Not only that, but they accept that Eurasia has always been their ally.

Even so, the people do not perceive any of these contradictions as a type of enslavement. They willingly let the Party tell them what to think, what to believe, what to value, and how to act. They allow the government to change these ideals whenever they choose, believing the new propaganda as fact and repressing the previous reality.

The people must be aware on some level that they are accepting clear opposites, reversals of what is presented as fact, and revisions of history. Yet they have come to accept this as a small price to pay for safety from their assigned, feared enemy.

It is almost as if the government sometimes changes reality just because they can. There is no need to change a fictional enemy, as the entire war is made up anyway. Creating a new contradiction for the people seems sometimes to be done just because the Party is able to do so, and because it keeps the population on its toes. The government has not only come to rule completely, but has reached a point where it takes pleasure in enslaving people so they do, say, and believe whatever their master tells them.

The nature of the relationship between the Party and its citizens is very much like slavery. The people must serve the government, and any attempt to "escape" with independent thought is brutally punished. The people are valued only insomuch as they benefit the government.

In 1984 , Winston, the protagonist, and Julia, his lover, secretly attempt to escape from the mind control of the government in a room they rent above Mr. Charington's shop. They believe the old-fashioned room has no telescreen, a device through which the Inner Party surveils the population.

But in fact the room does have a telescreen hidden behind a painting, and Mr. Charington is actually a member of the thought police. The notion of freedom cannot be maintained as Winston and Julia are attempting to define it. They cannot be free just because they remove themselves from their normal environment and go to a different room. There is no escape.

As the book comes to a close, Winston's idea of freedom has changed. He no longer has a sense of individual self, he has, in essence, become selfless, a part of the greater society. Now, he is not only compliant with the Party's dictates, but he wants to be compliant. He loves Big Brother and has no difficulty rejoicing when he hears about a tactical victory in Africa. The author then states that he slips back into a blissful dream where he perceives himself to have a soul as white as snow as he confesses and reports more people to the thought police.

The novel ends by saying that the long hoped for bullet entered Winston's brain. This does not mean he actually died, but that the independently-minded Winston, whose idea of freedom was freedom from Big Brother and the dictates of the Party, died. This suggests that Winston was willing to give up all that he had fought for and accept being subservient, controlled, and manipulated.

In today's complex world, it can sometimes feel as if having others take responsibility for making decisions for us would be freeing. We wouldn't have to struggle with different options or accept the consequences of bad decisions and situations we can't control. For different people, different degrees of autonomy, responsibility, and consequences contribute to the way freedom is defined. Some may feel free when they have more control over their life, even if it means they have more responsibility. For others, the stress of responsibility hampers their sense of freedom.

More choices may be construed as freedom, while numerous options may paralyze. Thus, freedom may be perceived in different ways by different people. As we see with Winston and Julia, this is even true in the dystopia of 1984.

Trust, Loyalty, and Betrayal

The twisted nature of trust, loyalty, and betrayal is a recurring theme in the novel 1984. Winston is betrayed by Mr. Charrington, O'Brien, and Julia. He also betrays Julia as well as himself. Yet the novel explores the nature of trust and how it plays into loyalty and betrayal. Without trust, there can be no loyalty or betrayal, and trust is almost non-existent in the novel. The characters can never know if they are being observed, either in person or through the telescreen.

It is also impossible to know who is a member of the thought police, and even those who are not part of the thought police often betray others by turning them in. On multiple occasions those closest to one other–such as spouses, siblings, parents, and their children–may betray each other. Yet this is what is expected of the members of this society. Citizens report one another with zeal.

Prior to their arrest and torture, Winston and Julia believe the only true betrayal is the betrayal of the heart, as this is the only kind of betrayal they have control over. They learn that they actually have no control over this type of betrayal either, as in the end they have no choice but to betray each other and themselves. What establishes their loyalty to each other is trust in something outside of the Party and Big Brother, but this idea is eventually broken.

They aren't traitors, though, until the Party makes them traitors through torture, when they confess to betraying the entire society and are forced to further betray anyone toward whom they may feel loyalty. The Party seeks to eliminate potential betrayal at the root by getting rid of all trust and loyalty.

So, the contradiction exists whereby trust and loyalty to other citizens is deemed bad, while trust and loyalty to the Party is deemed good. Moreover, betrayal of the Party is deemed bad, while betrayal of others is deemed good. The irony is that when all loyalty toward other citizens is destroyed, no true loyalty toward the Party can exist either. Still, loyalty based on fear and manipulation is satisfactory to the Party.

Winston believes that despite knowing they will turn against each other and tell the Party what they want to hear about each other's sins, as long as they continue to love one another this will not be betrayal. This is an idealistic and naive viewpoint, since he clearly tells Julia that, once they are captured, there will be nothing they can do for each other.

Truthfully, they can remain loyal to the other by not giving up information. But neither of them consider this an option. When you cannot put another over yourself, or stop yourself from saying something that could harm the other, true or not, not only can there be no trust and thus no loyalty, there can be no love.

The Appearance of Reality vs. True Reality

In the novel, O'Brien tries to teach Winston about the nature of reality under the Party through torture, manipulation, and fear. Winston attempts to hold onto his belief that there is a true reality that cannot be controlled by the Party, especially in relation to the past, which is fixed and a part of people's memories. O'Brien points out that the Party controls all documents as well as people's thoughts, so the Party truly can control the past.

This absolute control leads to the assertion that whomever controls the past controls the future, and whomever controls the present controls the past. O'Brien is arguing that the Party's version of the past is what people believe, and what people believe is truth even if it has no basis in true reality. This is related to the Party slogans in several ways.

O'Brien wants Winston to let go and allow himself to be torn down so he can be reconstructed as a citizen that is loyal to the Party. This ties into the reversal of the traditional idea of freedom and enslavement, as it is only in allowing oneself to become enslaved by the Party, by fully accepting it and its ideals, that one can get rid of the stress and strain involved in fighting against it.

Once one accepts the Party, they no longer have to worry about what to think, how to act, or what to do with their lives. It is all done for them, and they are free from the burden of self-determination. By waging war against self-determination one can find peace. The easiest way to do this is through ignorance, which provides a person with the ability to accept anything the Party wants them to believe. This allows them to be a model citizen, and in this world, that is a strength.

Concluding Thoughts

In today's world we all too often fail to notice that we are allowing ourselves to be enslaved as well. Sometimes this is due to propaganda and the lack of alternative information that is easy to obtain. Other times it may be do to shear laziness and the failure to seek the truth or to let ourselves realize that we are contributing to our own slavery such as when we turn over personal information online without thinking twice.

We register brief outrage when learning of the government's intrusion into our private lives such as with hidden wires that allow them to access our mobile conversations and data. But we just as quickly let it go without demanding redress, with the excuse that we can't do anything about it or that that the company in question must deal with it. We let government officials change reality with false facts and fake news and again give lip service to our anger and disbelief but allow them to remain in office saying that is what politicians do and we have to accept the bad with the good.

In other words. we are letting those who lead, those in power, define our reality, at least in part. This is done through whatever means will help them retain power as opposed to what is in our best interests. We accept propaganda that reverses itself similar to the war propaganda in 1984. For instance, whether Libya is our staunchest enemy or ally has depended on if there was benefit to one vs. the other at the time.

We can accept that a nation is our friends one day and our enemy the next, largely by allowing ourselves to remain ignorant. We fail to learn everything we can about the situation, instead, simply believing the position the government tells us to believe. We allow ourselves to be led to wage war on what we know to be reality that is based on manipulated collective memories of events.

This may seem like peace since we don't have to work to undercover the truth of situations, but it is taking the easy way out and allowing others to define our past, present and future. The only way to find true freedom, peace and strength is to refuse to blindly accept whatever we are told just to keep things simple and non-confrontational.

We need to come to the conclusion that it is time to wage war on such automatic acceptance of manipulated reality. We can take a stance and follow our words with actions, demanding there be consequences for those who attempt to feed the public lies dressed up as alternate facts or who rewrite history according to their own best interests. This is ultimately what will lead to true strength, the abandonment of ignorance and ultimately freedom and peace.

If you found this article useful or interesting, please share on Facebook or Pinterest.

Related Articles

If you enjoyed this article, you might enjoy these, as well:

Related Articles Related Questions What Are the Four Ministries in 1984 ?

Ministries in 1984 are the departments of the government that maintain the status quo. Each of the ministries has a different responsibility. The four ministries and their functions are as follows.

Ministry Function

Ministry of Truth

Alters official documents to reflect the artificial reality dictated by Big Brother. Distributes propaganda, controls the flow of new information, and alters documents from the past to make them align with the present.

Ministry of Love

Enforces the rules of the government by carrying out surveillance of Oceania's citizens. Employs the thought police to spy on and capture potential offenders. Carries out the imprisonment and torture of political prisoners.

Ministry of Peace

Carries out all matters of war, including the creation of armies and the creation of weapons.

Ministry of Plenty

Carries out the production of goods like food, clothing, appliances, and equipment.

What Is Facecrime in 1984 ?

Facecrime in 1984 is committed when a citizen of the Party reveals that they are committing thoughtcrime through the expression on their face. It may also be something that indicates abnormality such as a nervous tic, a look of anxiety, muttering to oneself, for example. Anything that suggests someone has something to hide.

Facecrime can be detected using telescreens, a citizen spy, or a member of the thought police.

What Is Thoughtcrime in 1984 ?

Thoughtcrime in 1984 is committed when a citizen of the Party thinks "deviant" thoughts, which would include any thoughts that have to do with individuality or freedom. A citizen can be charged with thoughtcrime for simply thinking about thoughtcrime.

Thoughtcrime is detected with telescreens installed throughout Oceania that have both microphones and cameras. Thoughtcrime can also be detected by the inflection of one's voice or the micro-expressions of their face (called facecrime ). Members of the thought police, an organization within the Ministry of Love, or a citizen spy may catch someone committing thought crime which leads to the individuals arrest and interrogation.

What Is Doublethink in 1984 ?

Doublethink in 1984 occurs when a person knows that something is not true, but believes it to be true anyway. One example of the citizens of Oceania using doublethink is if Big Brother were to say that 2+2 equals 5. While mathematical fact says that 2+2 equals 4, through the use of doublethink, 2+2 can equal 5.

Doublethink is a fact of life in Oceania, and must be used everyday in order to survive. The best citizens in George Orwell's dystopian universe are those who have mastered the art of doublethink.

What Is Duckspeak in 1984 ?

Duckspeak in 1984 occurs when someone speaks without thinking, like a quacking duck. In Oceania, saying that somebody is using duckspeak can be interpreted as either good or "ungood" depending on who is speaking and what they are saying.

If a citizen is saying something in line with the parties ideals then it is good. If they are carelessly saying something against the Party doctrine then it is "ungood" and results in their arrest and interrogations.

What Does it Mean to Be Vaporized in 1984 ?

To be vaporized in 1984 is to be captured by the thought police for a crime and eliminated. Being vaporized means you not only cease to exist, but have never existed. Once you have been vaporized by the Ministry of Love, the Ministry of Truth goes to work removing every trace of your existence.

Often, those who are vaporized are not even told of their crimes. Instead, they are simply abducted one day, taken to the Ministry of Truth, tortured until they admit to some wrongdoing, asked to implicate others, and vaporized. The cycle continues endlessly, and keeps citizens vigilant when it comes to enforcing Big Brother's rules and ideologies.

In one scene from the book, Winston, is his job at the Ministry of Truth, has to edit an article from the past about a man who was recently vaporized. Since he is now considered an unperson , Winston fills the hole left by this man by creating an entirely fictional character, a decorated war hero. Other departments in the Ministry of Truth go to work making a face for the man, taking pictures of him in professional studios that make it look like he is in some far away, war-torn land. Once this work is finished, the real man is gone, replaced by a fictional one.

What Is an Unperson in 1984 ?

An unperson in 1984 is a person who has been vaporized and no longer exists (and has never existed). This is the term the Inner Party uses to refer to those they have had removed from society through vaporization.

A large part of Winston's job at the Ministry of Truth is to fill the gaps in history that are left in the wake of unpersons.

Questions & Answers

Question: Is the statement, "War is Peace" a paradox or an oxymoron? Also, what are some examples of paradoxes and oxymorons in literature?

Answer: Many people confuse oxymorons and paradoxes. Both can be recognized in everyday conversation as well as in literature. However, they are not the same thing and have different purposes.

A paradox is a statement or group of statements that may on the surface appear to embody contradictions or seen absurd but upon further reflection be seen as true or at least as something that makes sense. They are contrary to what we normally believe and can make us think about things in different ways or more deeply. They, therefore, are frequently employed as literary devices. An oxymoron is comprised of two opposing or contradictory words that are used for dramatic effect.

War is peace seems like a contradiction and an absurd one at that. War is the most brutal act we can carry out against each other. It is far from peaceful. Sometimes war is necessary to ensure that peace can occur.

Consider the situation where a country is constantly launching missiles at another country, going on stealth raids or other types of limited attacks that may be months apart and each a single occurrence but which still result in the loss of life, property, the constant fear or another attack that causes the population to have to change the way they live to protect themselves from harm and terror when the attacks occur.

This is not a state of peace. So to stop all this, the country being attacked launches a war against the other nation to render it impossible for them to continue the attacks both materially and based on the conditions of either a cease-fire or final agreement. The country that had been previously attacked wins the war following which they now have peace and are free from fear of further attack.

In Animal Farm, also by George Orwell, there is a cardinal rule set forth for all the animals. Part of it states:

"All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

This statement seems like it is impossible. First of all, equal is equal; it's an absolute without a related quantity. You can't have something that is more equal or less equal. So then, if all the animals are equal, you can't have some that are more equal. This would imply that some are either better, have more power, have more of a right to make decisions or deserve more resources than others. Again this would not suggest equality.

But in the novel, the government has never treated everyone equally even while stating that everyone is equal. It is akin to the separate but equal doctrine that once justified systems of segregation and the dual education system in the south. It was determined that as long as black children were provided with equal facilities as white children, segregation didn't go against the Constitution. But these separate schools were anything but equal.

In another, example, In Shakespeare's Hamlet, Hamlet states, "I have to be cruel to be kind." Again being cruel and being kind are considered to be opposite and mutually exclusive such that an action that is cruel cannot be kind and vice versa. We typically don't see someone who is cruel to us as a kind person.

In this example, Hamlet is speaking about his mother, and his intention to kill Claudius, his Uncle. It will be a tragedy for his mother, who is Claudius's wife, but Hamlet thinks that killing his father's murderer will ultimately be the best thing for this mother. So in the greater scheme of things, while it may seem cruel initially, Hamlet feels that the kindness he is doing is far greater.

In another Shakespeare work, The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, it says,

"The earth that's nature's mother is her tomb;

What is her burying grave, that is Rainbow in her womb "

The lines are at once describing the birth, with the earth being the birthplace, and death with the same earth housing Juliet's tomb. The second life, juxtaposes the idea of a grave, again alluding to death, with a womb, which is associated with birth.

In the poem, My Heart Leaps Up When I Behold by William Wordsworth, is the line:

"The child is father of the man "

This line seems reversed for it should be the man who is the father of the child. But thinking about it more carefully, it can be seen that childhood and everything that happens during this stage sets the stage for what comes after. So childhood is the basis for adulthood and thus, childhood "fathers" the man or adulthood.

There are numerous examples of an oxymoron in literature, but probably the most obvious one is from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet:

Why, then, O brawling love! O loving hate!

O anything, of nothing first create!

O heavy lightness! Serious vanity!

Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms!

Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health!

Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!

This love feel I, that feel no love in this.

Romeo learns he has fallen in love with an unavailable woman and feels as if he has descended into chaos. All his hopes and dreams have been shattered. Shakespeare portrays this sense of discord through the use of opposites that don't make sense much the same as Romeo's life no longer makes sense to him. This is communicated through phrases such as loving hate, heavy lightness, serious vanity, feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health, waking sleep.

© 2018 Natalie Frank

Comments

CommonCents on October 18, 2019:

Natalie said: "Given everything that is going on in the world today and our current President in the U.S. I think so many of the things Orwell wrote about have already come to pass in our society. "

Well Natalie, you are clearly drinking the INGSOC Party Kool-Aid if you think the current president represents the worst of 1984... the previous president (Obama) and his party see 1984 as their bible.

Daniel on May 28, 2019:

Hilarious that both 1984 and Brave New World predicted the future. Even more hilarious that us proles are still allowed to read them as a token freedom of "and what are you going to do about it?".

Natalie Frank (author) from Chicago, IL on September 15, 2018:

No, you have that reversed, jnjerrynelson. The Inner Party rules Oceania, making up 2% of the population. They are the ones that have the power and make the decisions for the society. The outer party is essentially the middle class and composed of the more educated members of society. They are largely responsible for implementation of the Party's policies (though this is actually carried out through spying and reporting on each other often aimed at gaining a bit more safety from being arrested) but they have no say in anything. They have strict rules applied to them. The proles are the lower class and have the same rules applied to them they just have less resources and lower level jobs. The inner party is the government.

jnjerrynelson on September 12, 2018:

Hi Natalie - I read the great 1984 many years ago and think about it all the time these days. I'm not sure that this is an original idea, but I've always thought that people missed the point about 1984 in that it is not about the evils of Government, so much as it is about the the Inner Party. The Government, represented by the Outer Party, is simply a tool that the Inner Party uses to maintain control and implement its agenda. The Inner Party is the real enemy, not the Government per se. The Outer Party is simply a means to an end. Right?

Derek on September 07, 2018:

Actually,1984 is NOT pessimistic -- everyone ignores the Appendix, which is clearly written in Oldspeak -- after the novel's events. It begins-''Newspeak WAS (my italics) the official language of Oceania'', and later-about a slogan-''it was believed with a fervour it is impossible for us to understand today'' -- implying the Party has been overthrown. Also, don't forget the idea that maybe Julia really was an agent of the Thought Police, with her access to quality tobacco, chocolate, etc.

Natalie Frank (author) from Chicago, IL on September 04, 2018:

Naum, Thank you for interest and your comment. I agree with you that the war is real from the standpoint of the people of Oceania. I hope I made that clear in the article. The point I was making as since from the standpoint of the government the war is made up and the people already believe in it, what does it matter who the enemy is? It causes the government added to work to suddenly change the enemy - they have to then ensure all of the people are on the same page, make announcements, change all sorts of documents and all the textbooks every time they do this.

So it would seem in the governments best interests since the war is always somewhere far away with the people only having a vague idea where so they'll never to near and find out the whole thing is a lie, to keep the enemy the same. It would serve the same purpose of unifying the people and make them willing to sacrifice resources, freedom, privacy etc. on behalf of the war effort.

My opinion is that the reason they change what is already a fictional enemy - meaning that while Eurasia and Eastasia, exist Oceania isn't at war with either - is for the purpose of doublethink, control and power. The government wants to get the people engaging in doublethink as much as possible so it is automatic. This is the main source of power for Ingsoc.

It also means the government can tell them blue is red and up is down then immediately say no, red is green and down is sideways and the people will have no problem switching from the first set of illogical statements to the second, fully believing each in turn. This makes them easy to control as they stop thinking for themselves, and let Ingsoc do all the thinking and decision making for them.

This allows the government to remain in complete control, to have all the power and different from most real life situations, they don't have to worry that the people will overthrow them - it takes a thinking population to first see things differently from the way they are told to believe and do what it takes to carry out a revolt.

Thanks again for reading the article and taking the time to comment. I hope you return to take a look at some of my other articles.

Naum Shuv on August 29, 2018:

Thank you for this extremely interesting article.

However, I cannot agree with one of your statements. Just one.

"There is no need to change a fictional enemy, as the entire war is made up anyway."

In my opinion, the war in the novel is absolutely real. I mean, it is artifical, of course, but it is not fictional. Unfortunately, war is real in our life too, and loss of dozens or even hundreds human lives is of no importance for politicians.

Natalie Frank (author) from Chicago, IL on August 21, 2018:

The more I look into it, the more similarities I see between what Orwell predicted and warned us about and the society we live in today. It really is an amazing parallel in a lot of ways. Thanks for reading and for commenting, Linda.

Natalie Frank (author) from Chicago, IL on August 05, 2018:

Dora - I'm glad you found the article interesting and relevant. Given everything that is going on in the world today and our current President in the U.S. I think so many of the things Orwell wrote about have already come to pass in our society. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Natalie Frank (author) from Chicago, IL on August 05, 2018:

Hi Doris - You are so right about what you said. We may not call it doublethink but that's not to say we don't do it a whole lot. We read 1984 and can't imagine living in such a world but fail to see that many of the things he warned us about have come true in spades. Just the fact we are accepting the idea of fake news and alternative facts, perhaps giving lip service to being outraged but at the same time we are letting leaders stay in power who are actually admitting to doing this as well as responsible for coining the terms in the first place. I'm sure what you saw in Russia was even worse as these things are certainly not limited to our country and have been going on elsewhere a lot longer. But seeing it actually develop under our noises with our awareness and ultimate acceptance or at least refusal to do anything is frightening and frustrating. Thanks for stopping by and for the comment. I am just finishing another article on other similarities between our world and 1984 - I hope you'll check back for it and take a look once it's published. I'll look forward to your response.

Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on July 09, 2018:

I agree with your analysis on 1984. Good job! I read this book back in the dark ages when I was a college student and found it so frightening that I thought it too ridiculous to even consider the possibility that it could come true. Today, I'm not so sure, and that is what really concerns me.

Political correctness trying to rewrite history, continuing to try to keep a whole area of our population on a guilt trip (the South) while totally ignoring the warts on the rest of the country, focusing on the wealthy while calling the poor "parasites" are just a few of today's attempts at Doublethink. Something to think about.

I like Tom's' comment mainly because I spent two weeks in the Soviet Union in the late 80s. Although I enjoyed traveling through a couple of major Russian cities, I could not wait to get back home to my own country, the land of the free and the home of the brave. HA!

Tom S on July 06, 2018:

Excellent, to the point, and very well explained so even I can understand it. Begs an association to current events in America. The Democratic Party comes to mind. This is even more applicable to me since I grew up in socialism/communism in Eastern Europe. Until you know what living under limited freedom means you do not know freedom.

Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on May 04, 2018:

Excellent analysis of Orwell's 1984. I read the book during my sophomore year of college in the 1960s, and it has stuck with me all these years enough to see a parallel with today's propaganda being spoon fed to us through both professional and social media. It doesn't matter whether we are losing elections allegedly due to fake news sourced from Russian hacking or whether Southerners are being fed a constant barrage that they are bad people because of something their ancestors did over 150 years ago. The result is still the same, and it stems from the same premise of mind control as was evident in the dystopian novel. Just as in 1984, people are accepting this form of mind-control as truth and allowing it to stir up hate for each other. In today's society, as was then, there seems to be a preponderance of the absence of love.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on May 03, 2018:

This is a very interesting and thought-provoking analysis, Natalie. 1984 is an impressive book that contains some fascinating ideas. I enjoy reading people's thoughts about the story and its implications for today. BY NATALIE FRANK

Related Articles

HISTORY Why Did Orwell Choose Freedom Is Slavery, Instead of Slavery Is Freedom as the Second Slogan in 1984?

LITERATURE A Different View of Women in Orwell's 1984 LITERATURE How Has George Orwell's Novel 1984 Come True Today? HISTORY A Historical Analysis of George Orwell's 1984 LITERATURE Analyzing Dystopian Fiction: How George Orwell's '1984' and Fritz Lang's 'Metropolis' Explores Oppression LITERATURE George Orwell's "Nineteen Eighty - Four": Summary and Analysis LITERATURE "Down and Out in Paris and London" by George Orwell - Book Review HISTORY Pax Romana: Peace During War

[Aug 01, 2020] Everyone working in academia, the non-profit sector, and journalism is aware that there are many ideas broadly held which people hesitate to say because they are worried a group of their strident colleagues will try to destroy their career

Highly recommended!
Free speech is not a dimmer switch, its on or its off – you can’t have it both ways. Cancel culture is a reincarnation of Stalinist purges, or McCarthyism.
Notable quotes:
"... The sort of "lose your job for engaging in speech" thing happens in other contexts, too. Companies routinely censor their employees' speech in ways small and large, and this includes completely non-political speech about purely technical matters. ..."
"... the government severely punishes employers whose employees speak in ways the government/the identity politics left (they are working together here) dislike, and so effectively outsources speech regulation to employers. ..."
"... The concern about cancel culture is in my observation largely driven by this dynamic: the frequent tagline right-leaning speech is violence, while left-leaning violence is speech" reflects the fact that getting some particular approach to a topic defined as "discrimination" ..."
"... Think about Rebecca Long-Bailey's recent demotion from the Labour shadow cabinet over a tweet she made. Last month, she retweeted a newspaper interview with prominent Labour-supporting actress Maxine Peake, calling her an "absolute diamond." The interview included an inaccurate claim from Peake ( based apparently on information in a Morning Star article, and which Peake subsequently withdrew when she was challenged on it) that the specific knee restraint used on George Floyd had been taught to Mineapolis police by Israeli secret police consultants. ..."
"... Long-Bailey lost the Shadow Education role, and her political career is likely over, ostensibly on the basis of this one tweet. ..."
"... The RLB case also throws a spotlight on language. The various rationales for cancelling listed in the OP -- racism, transphobia, or (in this case) antisemitism -- are rarely clear-cut in real-world instances ..."
"... This, I would suggest, is also related to power. The purpose of an accusation like this is to demonstrate the power or dominance of the cancelling agent, and to intimidate others by example. ..."
"... These concepts are capable of apparently endless linguistic elasticity. Indeed, it's when they're at their most extended or diffuse, that these grounds for cancellation seem to have the most signifying power. ..."
"... Everyone working in academia, the non-profit sector, and journalism is aware that there are many ideas broadly held which people hesitate to say because they are worried a group of their strident colleagues will try to destroy their career ..."
"... it is unquestionable that "canceling from the left" is a bigger threat from the right. ..."
"... Remember that the academic institutions in which controversies about 'cancel culture' exist are bourgeois institutions, pretty much like corporations. It is a world of authority, hierarchy, and carefully controlled behavior. ..."
"... As the power and prestige of the bourgeoisie shrink, the inmates of that particular cage will fight more fiercely for what's left. One way of fighting is to get someone's job by turning up something disreputable, such as the use of an apparently racist epithet. ..."
"... It seems to me that "cancel culture" is based on the infosphere's equivalent of the technological progress that now allows a small group of determined people with AK-47s to render a region ungovernable. ..."
"... The arms dealers don't care – they sell to everyone, and the more ammunition they sell, the more you'll need. ..."
"... Whether justified or not, a significant minority of Americans, across multiple lines, are fearful that their political opinions could endanger their jobs; this suggests the problem might be more than just people getting "bent-out-of-shape that they can't be raging bigots" . ..."
"... Purveyors of what-aboutery will probably appreciate that Steve Salita now makes a living as a bus driver ; I have no reason to think that the Harpers Letter signers (even Bari Weiss) would regard that situation as any more just than other examples. ..."
"... My position on this is that individuals shouldn't face public opprobrium unless there is 1) Clear and convincing evidence they are motivated by fundamentally malicious ends and 2) They have no remorse about it. Even when these conditions are met the opprobrium they receive should be clearly proportional to the wrong they've committed. We should relax these rules somewhat for celebrities, and a great deal for politicians, who have implicitly agreed to face criticism as a consequence of their role. ..."
"... In that testing sense, cancel culture can be seen as a type of supplementary social defense mechanism compared to the standard immune system response of trying to prove the political cult wrong in the eyes of unbiased observers; in too many historical cases, the immune response is weakened by factors such as adverse economic or geopolitical circumstances (e.g., a lost war) ..."
"... Cancel culture then works as (a) tracking and removal in the form of boycotts and ostracism, in that the infected cells(individuals) are removed from positions of influence, and (b) as a type of lockdown measure (censorship) that is warranted when the infected individual is transmitting patently false versions of current events or past history, and is starting to infect others around him. ..."
"... As to Peter's argument that cancel culture disfigures the left, I would add that the only cases where the radical left has seized power took place in the brutal aftermath of right-wing pandemics: e.g. the hyper-nationalism that led Germany and Russia among others to war in 1914, or KMT/warlord attempts to violently and brutally suppress peasant demands in the case of China. In such situations, it is no surprise that the radical left becomes infected with political cultism. ..."
"... Between those two positions there's a large space where people get harassed, threatened, ostracised and silenced for minor slips, reasonable disagreements, details that were lost in translation and failures to recite the correct thought-terminating cliches with sufficient conviction – basically, things that don't threaten anyone else's ability to speak. ..."
Aug 01, 2020 | crookedtimber.org

J-D 07.30.20 at 9:16 am

When I read this, I got the idea that there'd been a related discussion here at Crooked Timber before, and indeed there was!

https://crookedtimber.org/2016/08/27/the-university-of-chicago-is-nothing-more-and-nothing-less-than-a-complex-of-safe-spaces/


Tim H. 07.30.20 at 11:21 am ( 8 )

Racism from my perspective, looks like an unwillingness to evaluate people on an individual basis, whether it's from sloth, contempt or disability and it's a terrible look for an intellectual.

CHETAN R MURTHY 07.30.20 at 1:08 pm ( 11 )

JQ @ 1: The sort of "lose your job for engaging in speech" thing happens in other contexts, too. Companies routinely censor their employees' speech in ways small and large, and this includes completely non-political speech about purely technical matters.

I know of a case where a famous chip designer got up at a conference and said "none of you people talking about Itanium [Intel's ia64 chip that was the future of microprocessors once upon a time] actually think it's going to succeed -- why don't any of you admit it?"

Within moments he was covered in PR and lawyers basically taping his mouth shut. When I worked in global enterprise IT, I didn't post blog comments (neither political nor technical) b/c it was clear that there would always be the possibility of career repercussions for making statements that would have post-hoc repercussions

Companies censor their employees speech before-and-after-the-fact for lots of reasons, sometimes political. This is a fact of life, and you're very right to point out that if people actually cared about this [as opposed to getting bent-out-of-shape that they can't be raging bigots] they'd support strong unions.

SamChevre 07.30.20 at 1:25 pm ( 13 )

This is mainly a problem in the US because of employment at will.

Employment at will may contribute, but a larger part of the problem is that the US laws around free speech are odd. Technically, the government cannot regulate speech at all (with very limited exceptions, not relevant here.) In practice, though, what has happened (via so-called "antidiscrimination" law) is that the government severely punishes employers whose employees speak in ways the government/the identity politics left (they are working together here) dislike, and so effectively outsources speech regulation to employers.

The concern about cancel culture is in my observation largely driven by this dynamic: the frequent tagline right-leaning speech is violence, while left-leaning violence is speech" reflects the fact that getting some particular approach to a topic defined as "discrimination" means that it is severely punished by government, at second-hand.

Musicismath 07.30.20 at 1:42 pm (16 )

One thing that might be useful is distinguishing "cancel culture" as a phenomenon from cancellation more narrowly defined as a tactic . So many of the discussions I've seen recently about the issue seem content to operate at the big-picture level, asking whether such a thing as cancel culture even exists (the New Statesman approach) or (if it does) whether it's a good thing or a bad thing. Focussing in on actual cases, and thinking about who (precisely) benefits from individual instances, might instead help us think about the specific function of cancel culture, and the role that language plays in it.

Think about Rebecca Long-Bailey's recent demotion from the Labour shadow cabinet over a tweet she made. Last month, she retweeted a newspaper interview with prominent Labour-supporting actress Maxine Peake, calling her an "absolute diamond." The interview included an inaccurate claim from Peake ( based apparently on information in a Morning Star article, and which Peake subsequently withdrew when she was challenged on it) that the specific knee restraint used on George Floyd had been taught to Mineapolis police by Israeli secret police consultants.

Long-Bailey lost the Shadow Education role, and her political career is likely over, ostensibly on the basis of this one tweet. This, to me, is a fairly clear instance of cancellation at work, but it would be inadequate to leave it at that. The complete lack of commensurability between the transgression and the outcome would be incomprehensible without asking how RLB's cancellation fits into Labour Party politics; that is, the function of cancelling in this specific instance. Absolutely no one I know thinks this tweet proved Long-Bailey was genuinely antisemitic, or that it was even the primary reason she was demoted. Instead, it's been broadly (and, I think, correctly) interpreted as a signal from the Starmer wing of the party that the Corbyn faction with which RLB is aligned has no future in Labour. Cancellation, in this case, is a naked piece of power politics: a way of getting political opponents out of the way.

The RLB case also throws a spotlight on language. The various rationales for cancelling listed in the OP -- racism, transphobia, or (in this case) antisemitism -- are rarely clear-cut in real-world instances. In fact, there's a kind of homeopathic logic at work, where the more tendentious the attribution is, the more cut-through it often seems to have.

This, I would suggest, is also related to power. The purpose of an accusation like this is to demonstrate the power or dominance of the cancelling agent, and to intimidate others by example. ("If RLB got cancelled for this , then how little would I need to do to suffer the same fate?") As Jonathan Dollimore has pointed out, there's a certain in-built "linguistic imprecision" in many of the terms that cancellation depends on, and it's from that imprecision that the capacity for intimidation or fear generation stems from.

These concepts are capable of apparently endless linguistic elasticity. Indeed, it's when they're at their most extended or diffuse, that these grounds for cancellation seem to have the most signifying power.

Anon For Obvious Reasons 07.30.20 at 5:31 pm (
23
)

I find this deliberately misleading. "Cancel culture" in practice refers to the idea that you shouldn't be ostracized by your peers, friends, or professional field for holding and voicing ideas that are essentially mainstream.

Everyone thinks that if you insult someone with a racial slur, there should be consequences.

But after that, what should be the proper "bound" that discourse should not cross? I would argue that "any idea which can be studied rigorously" and "any idea held by a reasonably broad cross section of society" is clearly within the bound, and we do ourselves a huge disservice by refusing to countenance ideas in those sets. Further, as a commenter above notes, most people in the world are not left-wing activists. Setting the norm that you shouldn't be friends with/work with/hire/buy from people with ideas you find acceptable, but which are not extreme, will be and has been a disaster for gay people, atheists, and many others.

Everyone working in academia, the non-profit sector, and journalism is aware that there are many ideas broadly held which people hesitate to say because they are worried a group of their strident colleagues will try to destroy their career. The Shor example comes up because, as Matt Yglesias pointed out yesterday, it is so obviously ridiculous to lose your job for linking to a paper in APSR by a prominent (young, black) political scientist, and yet there really are many people in that world, progressive political campaigns, who would refuse to work with you if you hired Shor . It wasn't just his boss or "workplace protections" – he was kicked out of the listserv that is the main vector for finding jobs in that sphere, and his new employer remains anonymous on purpose!

And yes, this is not just a lefty thing. I'm sure that right-wing media sites, and church groups, and the rest all have similar cases. Trump clearly "canceled" Kaepernick, with the NFL's help. Yet we all agree that is bad! And in the sphere many of us are in, academia, it is unquestionable that "canceling from the left" is a bigger threat from the right.

Anarcissie 07.30.20 at 8:35 pm ( 30 )

Trader Joe 07.30.20 at 2:17 pm @ 17 --
Remember that the academic institutions in which controversies about 'cancel culture' exist are bourgeois institutions, pretty much like corporations. It is a world of authority, hierarchy, and carefully controlled behavior. Obviously there is little expression which may not have adverse consequences.

As the power and prestige of the bourgeoisie shrink, the inmates of that particular cage will fight more fiercely for what's left. One way of fighting is to get someone's job by turning up something disreputable, such as the use of an apparently racist epithet.

This didn't start yesterday. There is a certain spillover into popcult as students emerge from academia into the outer, also declining world and repeat the patterns which they have observed. Numerous stories are available, but I'll spare you. Anyway, Mr. Taibbi has been ranting well, and you can go there.

kinnikinick 07.30.20 at 9:08 pm (
34
)

Surprising to see so little emphasis on social media as the main catalyst. Tribalism is the driver of "engagement" online, and if righteous anger at the out-group gets the clicks, so be it. Consider how any Twitter post can become a tiny gleaming tableau, a battle flag, an allegory of sin or virtue. Context and interpretation cannot be arbiters, and must only serve the self-evident cause of loyalty to one's synthetic tribe. Faith and bad faith merge; that's just optimal use of an app's system of influence. "We shape our tools and then our tools shape us".

It seems to me that "cancel culture" is based on the infosphere's equivalent of the technological progress that now allows a small group of determined people with AK-47s to render a region ungovernable. This does not imply that the region's current government is a good one. It does not imply anything about the group's views, except that debating them is not likely to be on the agenda when they visit your village. There will no doubt be some unpleasant people among the casualties; perhaps that counts as a silver lining.

The arms dealers don't care – they sell to everyone, and the more ammunition they sell, the more you'll need.

Kiwanda 07.31.20 at 12:00 am ( 45 )

John Quiggin:

"But the fact that the same example (David Shor) is cited every time the issue is raised " here is one attempt to tabulate cancellations, at least on the left identitarian side; I am not endorsing any particular example. (NB: Sophie Jane in this case, not Sophie Grace.)

I would be curious about whether Henry approves of the suppression of speech as much as the OP does.

Whether justified or not, a significant minority of Americans, across multiple lines, are fearful that their political opinions could endanger their jobs; this suggests the problem might be more than just people getting "bent-out-of-shape that they can't be raging bigots" .

Purveyors of what-aboutery will probably appreciate that Steve Salita now makes a living as a bus driver ; I have no reason to think that the Harpers Letter signers (even Bari Weiss) would regard that situation as any more just than other examples.

J-D 07.31.20 at 12:05 am ( 46 )

There have been occasions in my life when I have justly and rightly experienced adverse consequences as a result of things that I have said. The proposition that nobody should ever experience adverse consequences as a result of statements made is utterly indefensible.

de Pony Sum 07.31.20 at 2:16 am ( 48 )

Discussions over "cancellation" can make things unnecessarily difficult because it's a very hard term to define- exactly how badly does your public reputation have to be before you are cancelled. All too often debates turn into "well so and so wasn't cancelled because they still have a job/they still have a platform/they're still living their life." (Although your post does avoid this by describing it in terms of an attempt instead of outcome) So to avoid ambiguities that attend "cancellation", I prefer "opprobrium"

My position on this is that individuals shouldn't face public opprobrium unless there is 1) Clear and convincing evidence they are motivated by fundamentally malicious ends and 2) They have no remorse about it. Even when these conditions are met the opprobrium they receive should be clearly proportional to the wrong they've committed. We should relax these rules somewhat for celebrities, and a great deal for politicians, who have implicitly agreed to face criticism as a consequence of their role.

I support this anti-opprobrium position because being shamed publicly is extremely painful. I would rather lose a limb than be widely publicly shamed and reviled, and I think a lot of people feel the same way, so, by the golden rule and all of that

In terms of the position you outline it seems to me that we're going to agree on a lot of issues. Pre-meditated use of racial slurs, for example. But I think there are a lot of instances of cancel culture that we won't agree on.

Here's some people I think have been unfairly subject to vast amounts of pubic opprobrium that some people would call cancel culture:

The p**nstar ( I won't spell it out because I'm at work) who killed herself in part because of the criticism she received when tweeted out (homophobically) that she didn't want to work actors who had done gay male scenes. While criticism would have been appropriate, the torrent of backlash she received was disproportionate.

The woman who went to the Washington Post's cartoonist party in blackface in a very misguided but not malicious attempt to satirize blackface and subsequently lost her job when the Washington post named her in their paper. Natalie Wynn of Contrapoints – for many different things.

Glenn Greenwald over the age difference between him and his partner

Now I'm picking cases of opprobrium that came from the left broadly construed, because I think of this as an internal conversation on the left. However, one thing that frustrates me about this debate is that no one is acknowledging that the right are masters of excessive opprobrium. Some examples:

But maybe my position amounts to a silly apolitical wish that people would be nice to each other, unless there's a very, very good reason not to.

Andres 07.31.20 at 3:07 am ( 49 )

Chris: An interesting case can be made in favor of cancel culture if we start thinking of most political cults including communism, fascism, maga-Trumpism and other types of fake populism as pandemics.

For starters, there is the testing. A positive test result is indicated by

(a) the talking points or analysis are exclusionary toward one or more social groups that are being "othered" based on any common aspect other than political actions that are unethical by some well-defined criterion; the extent indicates the severity of the symptoms, and

(b) the speaker or commenter is repeating someone else's talking points or writing rather than their own attempts to understand the issue; the extent indicates the degree of infectiousness.

In that testing sense, cancel culture can be seen as a type of supplementary social defense mechanism compared to the standard immune system response of trying to prove the political cult wrong in the eyes of unbiased observers; in too many historical cases, the immune response is weakened by factors such as adverse economic or geopolitical circumstances (e.g., a lost war).

Cancel culture then works as (a) tracking and removal in the form of boycotts and ostracism, in that the infected cells(individuals) are removed from positions of influence, and (b) as a type of lockdown measure (censorship) that is warranted when the infected individual is transmitting patently false versions of current events or past history, and is starting to infect others around him.

I am not in complete agreement with the above political cults-as-pandemics theory, but it has some compelling aspects in exceptional situations. Normally, the political-economic-cultural discourse is sufficiently healthy that the standard "cure for bad speech is more good speech" response is sufficient. Commenters above such as Peter Dorman are assuming that the "body politic" has a healthy and undisrupted immune system, but I would argue that is far from being the case right now; the U.S. is afflicted by oligarchic politics, highly unequal and quasi-feudal economics that make appeals to the free market laughable, and by standard of living deterioration in a large number of inner urban areas as well as mid-tier and small cities. So the patient is immuno-compromised and additional interventions are called for.

As to Peter's argument that cancel culture disfigures the left, I would add that the only cases where the radical left has seized power took place in the brutal aftermath of right-wing pandemics: e.g. the hyper-nationalism that led Germany and Russia among others to war in 1914, or KMT/warlord attempts to violently and brutally suppress peasant demands in the case of China. In such situations, it is no surprise that the radical left becomes infected with political cultism.

The important thing is to know when to apply cancel culture (and other resistance measures including mass disobedience) to left-wing movements that are "infected". Post-1989 Eastern Europe is a good example, though now it is right-wing pandemics that are taking hold. That is, cancel culture is not just for Lost Cause racism and proto-fascism, but for all political movements that cross the border into cultism and "othering".

Aubergine 07.31.20 at 3:14 am ( 50 )

CB:

Much of the pushback against cancel culture has come from prominent journalists and intellectuals who perceive every negative reaction from ordinary people on social media as an affront.

I don't think this is fair. As EB says @22:

The (wealthy, high profile) signers of the Harper's letter were not complaining on their own behalf; they were complaining on behalf of the millions of people with no power or money who are also threatened with mobbing if they voice divergent (not racist, not transphobic, not misogyist) views.

JK Rowling is pretty hard to cancel; she has a mountain of cash, and her books are still selling. But people who don't have a mountain of cash are going to look at examples like children's author Gillian Philip, who appears to have been "let go" by her publisher after being targetted by a cancellation campaign for tweeting "#ISTANDWITHROWLING", and think very carefully about whether they can afford to stick their head over the parapet. Personally, I've made a number of comments on Crooked Timber which I don't think were at all outside the bounds of acceptable discourse – certainly not in the same category as the racist speech you refer to (and at least one moderator must have agreed, because they were posted) – but which I simply couldn't risk making without a pseudonym.

I often detect a bit of motte-and-bailey in the anti-anti-cancel culture argument. The outer bailey is something like "cancel culture isn't the problem it's made out to be; it's just how norms of acceptable behaviour are worked out these days"; the motte is "it's okay to deplatform hardcore racists and holocaust deniers".

Between those two positions there's a large space where people get harassed, threatened, ostracised and silenced for minor slips, reasonable disagreements, details that were lost in translation and failures to recite the correct thought-terminating cliches with sufficient conviction – basically, things that don't threaten anyone else's ability to speak. Often this is done with the assistance of the false-flag social media "activist" accounts that right-wing agitators use to pick away at fault lines on the left.

Even when there are no serious real-world consequences this tends to create a narrow, stifling intellectual environment, which is what a large part of the opposition to "cancel culture" is trying to prevent. You do realise, don't you, that Crooked Timber's willingness to acknowledge heterodox views, on certain subjects, from the broad left puts it radically out of step with most of the "progressive" Western Internet?

(There are other parts where cancel-culture tactics are used against different targets, such as apostates and feminists in general (not just the wrong kind of feminists), which hopefully we can all agree is not good.)

Basically, I don't think it's an adequate response to critique of cancel-culture to pick out the cases where relatively mild tactics were used against acceptable targets, without acknowledging that the critique is much broader than that.

[Jul 24, 2020] At Animal Farm, all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

This all deflection from the oligarchy rule
Jul 24, 2020 | www.youtube.com
Tucker- There are two versions of the law - YouTube

America's shutdown exposed huge double standard.


I M , 1 month ago

I never understood why Americans are so protective of the Second Amendment and their right to bear arms. I get it now.

Victor Del Prete , 1 month ago

Tucker is the last best journalist in the U.S.A.

Stephen Tumlin , 1 month ago

If someone is treated special all the time, when they get treated normally, they feel oppressed.

blurglide , 1 month ago

At Animal Farm, all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

Metal Faced DOOM , 1 month ago

Tucker Carlson is vilified by leftists but his viewership is skyrocketing. Has to mean something

lil doe , 1 month ago

Trump didn't create the hate in the left. He exposed it

Tommy Brackett , 1 month ago

"To argue with someone who has renounced all reason, is like administering medicine to the dead"

See the Light , 1 month ago

When all else fails, there's still the Second Amendment. Why do we have a Second Amendment? In case all else fails.

Paul collins , 1 month ago

you talk from the heart and you never cave. Free speech is a rare thing these days and must be protected.

Lorry Camill , 1 month ago

No one ☝️ is above the law only Antifa and Pelosi and Maxine Watters 😂😂😂😂and there rioters

Casinoman , 1 month ago

The only truth teller on cable right now.

GutteralEviceration , 1 month ago

If we fall there will be "nowhere to escape to" - Ronald Reagan This is the last stand on earth.

danny adventurer , 1 month ago

I hope Tucker will be able to continue with his message. He's the only one left to communicate the truth.

Flamethrower82 , 1 month ago

The Democrats want their slaves back.

Martin Coté , 1 month ago

Am I the only one who hears the urgency in Tucker's voice, we are in real trouble and it's only going to get worse!!!

droneultimatum , 1 month ago

When a criminal shoots someone the left blames the gun. When a cop shoots a criminal the left blames the cop.

Loco Motives , 1 month ago

"No one is above the Law" Translation: 'You are not above the Law and... We, Are The Law'

Edward Oliver , 3 weeks ago

"All animals are equal. But some are more equal than others..." 🐖 🐕🐑 🐎🐄🐐🐓

Jackie Eastom , 1 month ago

ONCE AGAIN! THEY ARE "ELECTED " REPRESENTATIVES! NOT LEADERS!

FmnstsRDumb MAGAMAN , 1 month ago

It's hilarious hearing democrats say "no-one is above the law" as they cheat the system becoming multi millionaires via insider trading and selling their influence.

Andrey Kravets , 1 month ago

Over these last few weeks Tucker has been one of the few people to stand up to the mob and refuses to give in. Tremendous respect for people who refuse to give up their dignity.

[Jul 19, 2020] The "cancel culture" proponents who actually do the most damage are the pro-Israel types

Jul 19, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

the pair , Jul 18 2020 19:38 utc | 24

The "cancel culture" proponents who actually do the most damage (as opposed to twitter spats and maybe blocking speakers from a college campus here and there) are the pro-israel types. frum's presence alone brings up that question and i'm sure greenwald's positions on palestine were a major factor. chomsky is ostensibly anti-imperialist and anti-racist but let's not forget he lived on a kibbutz for a while and still thinks the two state solution is a good idea whereas BDS supposedly isn't. greenwald has also backed taibbi to some degree in his anti-cancel stance so that didn't help.


donkeytale , Jul 18 2020 20:12 utc | 34

"Cancel culture" is an outgrowth of the social media culture in real life.

Let's ban everyone who has a disagreeable opinion.

Peter AU1 , Jul 18 2020 20:21 utc | 36

"The forces of illiberalism are gaining strength throughout the world and have a powerful ally in Donald Trump, who represents a real threat to democracy."

This sacred cow of illusion is being threatened from all directions it seems. Democracy is great for whoever owns it, and whoever owns the media owns democracy. A cow well worth milking.

time2wakeupnow , Jul 18 2020 21:05 utc | 45

@the pair:
"the "cancel culture" proponents who actually do the most damage (as opposed to twitter spats and maybe blocking speakers from a college campus here and there) are the pro-israel types. frum's presence alone brings up that question and i'm sure greenwald's positions on palestine were a major factor"

Exactly this! Greenwald has been a major irritant to many of the letters signatories. You mentioned Frum, but also it would include the hyper hypocritical "cancel culture" queen herslf: Ms. Bari Weiss - who recently 'resigned' from her last pro Zionist platform: the NYT's.

[Jul 19, 2020] Most of those who signed Harper letter, especially neocons like Weiss and Frum are interested in free speech for themselves and those like them

Jul 19, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

michaelj72 , Jul 18 2020 21:21 utc | 51

Jonathan Cook has one of the most cogent, nuanced and accurate critiques of this Harpers letter at than anyone I've read. Very long and well reasoned, with three additional updates too. He takes many of the signers to task, especially in their noted over-whelming support for Israel, for which many of them are now 'suffering' criticism

https://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2020-07-09/letter-cancel-culture-free-speech/

....It is easy to agree with the letter's generalised argument for tolerance and free and fair debate. But the reality is that many of those who signed are utter hypocrites, who have shown precisely zero commitment to free speech, either in their words or in their deeds...

....The array of signatories is actually more troubling than reassuring. If we lived in a more just world, some of those signing – like Frum, a former speechwriter for President George W Bush, and Anne-Marie Slaughter, a former US State Department official – would be facing a reckoning before a Hague war crimes tribunal for their roles in promoting "interventions" in Iraq and Libya respectively, not being held up as champions of free speech.

....Chomsky signed because he has been a lifelong and consistent defender of the right to free speech, even for those with appalling opinions such as Holocaust denial.

...Chomsky, importantly, is defending free speech for all, because he correctly understands that the powerful are only too keen to find justifications to silence those who challenge their power. Elites protect free speech only in so far as it serves their interests in dominating the public space..."


And then Cook says, most importantly:

...By contrast, most of the rest of those who signed – the rightwingers and the centrists – are interested in free speech for themselves and those like them. They care about protecting free speech only in so far as it allows them to continue dominating the public space with their views – something they were only too used to until a few years ago, before social media started to level the playing field a little...."

[Jul 19, 2020] Likudnik Weiss and cancel culture

Notable quotes:
"... The New Republic ..."
"... The New Republic ..."
"... How to Fight Anti-Semitism ..."
"... How to Fight Anti-Semitism ..."
"... The Grayzone ..."
Jul 19, 2020 | consortiumnews.com

While Sullivan does not share the Likudnik politics of Weiss, he enjoys some notable institutional and personal links to her political network. As the former editor of The New Republic , Sullivan worked under the direction of the magazine's fanatically pro-Israel former publisher, Marty Peretz, who has since relocated to Tel Aviv . Peretz's daughter, Evgenia, published a fawning profile of Weiss in Vanity Fair in April 2019, portraying her as an inspiring new talent who was "genuinely fueled by curiosity, the desire to connect, to cross boundaries and try out new things."

During the time Sullivan and Peretz ran The New Republic , the magazine was funded by the pro-Israel businessman Roger Hertog. Hertog also plowed his fortune into the Shalem Center to launch a training institute for young pro-Israel pundits in 2002.

Among the first interns to pass through the Shalem training school was a Columbia University student named Bari Weiss. (Weiss' editor at the Times , Rubenstein, had also been involved in the Hertog Foundation) .

Whether or not Weiss plans to join Sullivan at a new outlet for disgruntled anti-SJW [social justice warrior] centrists, the circumstances surrounding her self-expulsion reveal her resignation letter as an insincere whitewash.

Besides the possibility that Weiss' departure was a PR stunt, there is the fact that she has spent a large portion of her adult life working to cancel Palestinian academics and left-wing politicians while howling about the rise of a totalitarian "cancel culture."

Self-Styled Free Thinker Campaigns to Silence Left-Wing Dissenters

Before Bari Weiss branded herself as an avatar of free thought, she established herself as the queen of a particular kind of cancel culture. The 36-year-old pundit has dedicated a significant portion of her adult life to destroying the careers of critics of Israel, tarring them as anti-Semites, and carrying out the kind of defamation campaigns that would result in her targets losing their jobs.

The pundit has shown a particular obsession with Palestinian-American scholar Joseph Massad and the New York City-based Palestinian-American activist Linda Sarsour. Other targets have included Keith Ellison, the Minnesota Attorney General who was the first Muslim elected to Congress, and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, an ardent opponent of U.S. regime change wars.

There is also ample evidence that while at Columbia University, Weiss helped bring down the dean of Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs, Lisa Anderson, for inviting Iran's then-President Mahmoud Ahmadenijad to speak on campus. Anderson's son has pointed to Weiss as a key factor in her resignation:

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-3&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=971771299629592576&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fconsortiumnews.com%2F2020%2F07%2F17%2Fdid-neocon-cancel-queen-stage-nyt-exit-to-fuel-her-next-move%2F&theme=light&widgetsVersion=9066bb2%3A1593540614199&width=550px

In her resignation letter, Weiss found space to castigate the Times for publishing an interview with renowned African-American author Alice Walker , whom she casually defamed as "a proud anti-Semite who believes in lizard Illuminati."

Weiss also flexed her bona fides as a proud neoconservative activist, saying she was "honored" to have given the world's most prestigious media platform to a slew of regime-change activists from countries targeted by the U.S. national security for overthrow, including Venezuela, Iran, and Hong Kong, along with notorious Islamophobe Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Chloe Valdary – a fellow Israel lobby product who previously worked as an intern for Bret Stephens .

In her three-year career as an editor of the opinion section of the newspaper of record, Weiss devoted a significant chunk of her columns to attacking her left-wing critics, while complaining endlessly of the haters in her Twitter mentions (which is risible given her lamentation in her resignation letter that "Twitter has become [the Times '] ultimate editor").

In her 2019 book, Weiss condemned the pro-Palestine left as a whole. She insisted the idea that Zionism is a colonialist and racist movement is an anti-Semitic "Soviet conspiracy;" that the UK Labour Party under leader Jeremy Corbyn was a "hub of Jew hatred," and that "leftist anti-Semites" are "more insidious and perhaps existentially dangerous" than far-right "Hitlerian anti-Semites."

It is worth reviewing this historical record to show how Cancel Queen Bari Weiss' apparent change of heart on cancel culture might more appropriately be described as an opportunist career choice.

Campaigns to Cancel Massad, Sarsour & Ellison

In her 2019 book "How to Fight Anti-Semitism," Weiss revived her condemnations of Massad, whom she first targeted at Columbia University after interning at the Hertog-funded Shalem Center.

Weiss also argued that New York University (NYU) was rife with anti-Semitism . Her proof? An individual student was told some stupid anti-Semitic comments, and -- much more disconcertingly for Weiss – "In December 2018, the student government successfully passed a BDS resolution," and "NYU gave the President's Service Award, the school's highest honor, to Students for Justice in Palestine."

Massad was hardly the only victim of Bari Weiss' compulsive cancel culture campaigns. The neoconservative pundit wrote an entire New York Times column in 2017 dedicated to trying to cancel Palestinian-American activist Linda Sarsour .

Rapping progressives over the knuckles for purportedly "embracing hate," Weiss characterized Sarsour as an unhinged anti-Semite because of her criticism of the colonialist Zionist movement, and worked to disrupt the Women's March, which Sarsour helped to found.

Then in a tag-team cancel campaign with feverishly pro-war CNN host Jake Tapper (who has his own questionable history with racial issues ), they portrayed Sarsour as an extremist for expressing support for former Black Panther leader Assata Shakur, whom they jointly demonized as a "cop-killer fugitive in Cuba."

Next, Weiss turned her sights on the Democratic Attorney General of Minnesota Keith Ellison, claiming in a 2017 column that he had a "long history of defending and working with anti-Semites."

Attempts to Cancel Tulsi Gabbard

Bari Weiss' cancelation rampage continued without a moment of self-reflection.

In an interview with podcaster Joe Rogan in January 2019, the pundit tried to cancel Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard because of her work advocating against the international proxy war on Syria.

When Rogan mentioned Gabbard's name, Weiss scoffed that the congresswoman is "monstrous," smearing her an "Assad toady," in reference to the Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. Confused, Rogan asked Weiss what exactly that meant. The bumbling New York Times pundit could not answer, unable to define or even spell the insult.

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-4&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1087776024929226752&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fconsortiumnews.com%2F2020%2F07%2F17%2Fdid-neocon-cancel-queen-stage-nyt-exit-to-fuel-her-next-move%2F&theme=light&widgetsVersion=9066bb2%3A1593540614199&width=550px

Claims 'Leftist Anti-Semitism' Worse Than 'Hitlerian Anti-Semitism'

Bari Weiss' most extreme views on Israel-Palestine and the left can be seen in her 2019 book How to Fight Anti-Semitism . In this tome, the neoconservative writer set out to cancel the pro-Palestinian anti-racist left as a whole by arguing that supposed "leftist anti-Semitism" is more dangerous than "Hitlerian anti-Semitism."

Weiss wrote:

"Hitlerian anti-Semitism announces its intentions unequivocally. But leftist anti-Semitism, like communism itself, pretends to be the opposition of what it actually is.

Because of the easy way it can be smuggled into the mainstream and manipulate us – who doesn't seek justice and progress? who doesn't want a universal brotherhood of man? – anti-Semitism that originates on the political left is more insidious and perhaps existentially dangerous [than on the right]."

When she says "leftist anti-Semitism," Weiss almost invariably means progressive criticism of Israeli apartheid, racism, and brutality against the indigenous Palestinian population.

If that wasn't already obvious, Weiss spelled it out:

"If you want to see the stakes, just look across the pond, where Jeremy Corbyn, an anti-Semite, has successfully transformed one of the country's great parties into a hub of Jew hatred.

Corbynism is not confined to the U.K. Right now in America, leftists who share Corbyn's worldview are building grassroots movements and establishing factions with the Democratic Party that are suspiciously unskeptical of genocidal terrorist groups like Hamas and actively hostile to Jewish power and the state of Israel."

In her book, Weiss insisted the idea that Zionism is a colonialist and racist movement is the product of a "Soviet conspiracy" spread by USSR in order to destroy Israel. She expressly ignored the words of the father of Zionism himself, Theodor Herzl, who wrote that Zionism "is a colonial idea" and requested help from British colonialists, including colonial master Cecil Rhodes.

"Progressives have, knowingly or unknowingly, embraced the Soviet lie that Israel is a colonialist outpost that should be opposed," Weiss lamented.

"In the most elite spaces across the country, people declare, unthinkingly, that Israel is a racist state and that Zionism is racism, without realizing that they are participating in a Soviet conspiracy, without realizing that they are aligning themselves with the greatest mass murderers in modern history," she bemoaned.

Not mincing her words, Weiss concluded, "When anti-Zionism becomes a normative political position, active anti-Semitism becomes the norm."

With these passages, it became clear that her How to Fight Anti-Semitism was a book-length attempt to cancel anti-Zionists as a whole, by conflating their opposition to Israeli apartheid as anti-Semitism.

Anyone who disputes that Israel is "a political and historical miracle" is secretly a Jew hater, Weiss has argued. She effused, "That I can walk the streets of Tel Aviv today as a feminist woman in a tank top," she marveled, "that it is a free and liberated society in the middle of the Middle East, is an achievement so great that it is often hard for many people to grasp."

As with much of the content Weiss produces, her gushing praise for Israel's supposedly "liberated society" could have been lifted from a propaganda pamphlet distributed on campus by a pro-Israel lobbying outfit. But it was never quality writing or original ideas that won Weiss the attention she sought, and which has virtually ensured she will be "cancelled" into a new, high-profile position in the mainstream commentariat.

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, including best-selling " Republican Gomorrah ," " Goliath ," " The Fifty One Day War ," and " The Management of Savagery ." He has produced print articles for an array of publications, many video reports, and several documentaries, including "Killing Gaza ." Blumenthal founded The Grayzone in 2015 to shine a journalistic light on America's state of perpetual war and its dangerous domestic repercussions.

Ben Norton is a journalist, writer, and filmmaker. He is the assistant editor of The Grayzone , and the producer of the " Moderate Rebels" podcast, which he co-hosts with editor Max Blumenthal. His website is BenNorton.com and he tweets at @ BenjaminNorton .

[Jul 16, 2020] Numerous other figures of lesser rank have been purged, their careers and livelihoods destroyed for Tweeting out a phrase such as "All Lives Matter," whose current classification as "hate speech" might have stunned even George Orwell.

Notable quotes:
"... Indeed: In some ways, our 'normal' is more insane than anything in Orwell's fiction. ..."
Jul 16, 2020 | www.unz.com

Jake , says: July 15, 2020 at 3:07 am GMT

Numerous other figures of lesser rank have been purged, their careers and livelihoods destroyed for Tweeting out a phrase such as "All Lives Matter," whose current classification as "hate speech" might have stunned even George Orwell.

Indeed: In some ways, our 'normal' is more insane than anything in Orwell's fiction.

[Jul 16, 2020] America is channeling its Inner George Orwell

Jul 16, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

ak74 , Jul 16 2020 2:14 utc | 53

@ vk

"So, in this case, I think there is a significant portion of the American intelligentsia who genuinely believe in this mad thesis that perpetual war will always solve positively all the domestic problems of the USA. I don't think this is pure cynicism: many of those Cold War living fossils really envision an even better America for their children and grandchildren by promoting an all-out war against China, Russia, Iran, North Korea et al - even in the stances where USA proper is attacked and Americans directly die because of it."

America is channeling its Inner George Orwell, as the only solution the Americans have to deal with their fading global hegemony and domestic national implosion is to recycle their old Cold War tactic of Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace.

The United States of Oceania has always been at war with East Asia or Eurasia or Osama Bin Goldstein!

America is truly a sick country, and its worse than any COVID-19.

[Jun 26, 2020] Every record has been destroyed, every book rewritten, every statue and street building has been renamed... nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right... by Giulio Meotti

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Antiracism has been transformed... At the time of the great migration, it is no longer a question of welcoming newcomers by integrating them into European civilization, but exposing the faults of this civilization ..."
"... He referred to "self-racism" as "the most dismaying and grotesque pathology of our time". Its capital is London. ..."
"... Vandalism and self-hatred are quickly gaining ground. The epic of great discoveries associated with British Empire has become shameful. The protests are not about slavery. No one in the UK today would cheer that period. It is rather a call for cultural cleansing of all the works contradicting the new mantra: "diversity". ..."
"... "A new form of Taliban was born in the UK today" , wrote Nigel Farage, referring to two giant ancient Buddha statue that were blown up by the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001. ..."
"... This movement of hating the West -- which has, as all of us do, an imperfect history -- seems to have begun in British universities. In Cambridge, professors of literature asked to replace white authors with representatives from minorities to "decolonize" the curriculum. The student union of London's prestigious School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) asked to remove Plato, Kant, Descartes, Hegel and others from the curriculum, because they were "all white" -- as if the color of our skin should be the sole determinant of our thoughts. In Manchester, students painted over a mural based on Kipling's poem "If". ..."
"... A scholar of colonialism, Nigel Biggar, said that a "climate of fear" has returned to British universities. The University of Liverpool recently agreed to rename a building honoring former prime minister William Gladstone. At Oxford, meanwhile, the statue of Cecil Rhodes, philanthropist and founder of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), risks being the next to go. ..."
Jun 23, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

"Every record has been destroyed , every book rewritten , every statue and street building has been renamed ... nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right ..." - George Orwell, 1984.

Authored by Giulio Meotti via The Gatestone Institute,

"Antiracism is no longer the defense of the equal dignity of people, but an ideology, a vision of the world," said the French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut, son of Holocaust survivors.

"Antiracism has been transformed... At the time of the great migration, it is no longer a question of welcoming newcomers by integrating them into European civilization, but exposing the faults of this civilization".

He referred to "self-racism" as "the most dismaying and grotesque pathology of our time". Its capital is London.

" Topple the racists " consists of a map with 60 statues in 30 British cities. The removal of the statues is being requested to support a movement born in the United States after a white policeman, Derek Chauvin, killed a black man, George Floyd, by kneeling on his neck.

In Bristol, a crowd pushed the statue of philanthropist and slave-owner Edward Colston into the harbor. The act was followed in London by protests vandalizing statues of Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi and Abraham Lincoln. London's Mayor Sadiq Khan, after removing the monument to Robert Milligan, a Scottish slave trader, from outside the Museum of London Docklands, announced the creation of commission to review tearing down statues that do not reflect "the city's diversity". Two more statues were ordered to be removed from two London hospitals.

Vandalism and self-hatred are quickly gaining ground. The epic of great discoveries associated with British Empire has become shameful. The protests are not about slavery. No one in the UK today would cheer that period. It is rather a call for cultural cleansing of all the works contradicting the new mantra: "diversity".

"A new form of Taliban was born in the UK today" , wrote Nigel Farage, referring to two giant ancient Buddha statue that were blown up by the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001.

"Unless we get moral leadership quickly our cities won't be worth living in".

The list of statues to be removed includes the names of Oliver Cromwell and Horatio Nelson, two major figures in British history, as well as Nancy Astor, the first woman to be elected to the British Parliament and take a seat in 1919. Also on the list were the names of Sir Francis Drake, Christopher Columbus and Charles Gray (the prime minister whose government supervised the abolition of slavery in 1833).

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, expressing opposition to the removal campaign, said :

" We cannot now try to edit or censor our past. We cannot pretend to have a different history. The statues in our cities and towns were put up by previous generations. They had different perspectives, different understandings of right and wrong. But those statues teach us about our past, with all its faults. To tear them down would be to lie about our history, and impoverish the education of generations to come."

British post-colonial guilt is, however, having repercussions far larger than statues. There is, for instance, still total silence about persecuted Christians, according to a UK bishop leading a government review into their suffering. There is also, notably, a retreat from the world's stage.

"When the West loses confidence in itself, because of excessive or misplaced guilt over colonialism, it turns to isolationism", noted Bruce Gilley, a professor of political science.

"We are afraid that anything we do is colonial. There's plenty of countries willing to step into that global governance gap: China, Iran, Russia, Turkey".

Post-colonial guilt is also suffocating freedom of speech in the UK. The former British "equality watchdog" chief, Trevor Phillips, was suspended from the Labour Party after allegations of "Islamophobia". Phillips' guilt? Being critical of multiculturalism. According to Phillips:

"In my view, squeamishness about addressing diversity and its discontents risks allowing our country to sleepwalk to a catastrophe that will set community against community, endorse sexist aggression, suppress freedom of expression, reverse hard-won civil liberties, and undermine the liberal democracy that has served this country so well for so long."

Phillips also claimed that British politicians and journalists are "terrified" of discussing race, thereby leaving multiculturalism to become a " racket " exploited by some to entrench segregation. A man of Guyanese origin , a Labour Party veteran and an equality commissioner spoke the truth to the multiculturalists.

The activists who campaign to remove the statues want radically to change the look of the British capital. The clash seems to consist of, on one side, violent censors who bully everyone, and on the other side, cowardly, appeasing politicians, who are afraid and bow to the vandals. Monuments are a vital and visible part of a global city; they embody their place in the history of a city, otherwise only bus stops and Burger Kings would remain there. These protestors appear to wish for a revised, sanitized history. If we do not quickly understand that, if we erase our past, as the former Soviet Union tried to do, it will be easier for people to create their vision of our future with no rudder to anchor us or our values. We will be left with nothing in our hands but shattered pieces of our history and culture.

This movement of hating the West -- which has, as all of us do, an imperfect history -- seems to have begun in British universities. In Cambridge, professors of literature asked to replace white authors with representatives from minorities to "decolonize" the curriculum. The student union of London's prestigious School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) asked to remove Plato, Kant, Descartes, Hegel and others from the curriculum, because they were "all white" -- as if the color of our skin should be the sole determinant of our thoughts. In Manchester, students painted over a mural based on Kipling's poem "If".

A scholar of colonialism, Nigel Biggar, said that a "climate of fear" has returned to British universities. The University of Liverpool recently agreed to rename a building honoring former prime minister William Gladstone. At Oxford, meanwhile, the statue of Cecil Rhodes, philanthropist and founder of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), risks being the next to go.

"There is a bit of hypocrisy," Lord Patten, the chancellor of Oxford, commented , "in Oxford taking money for 100 scholars a year, about a fifth of them from Africa, to come to Oxford, and then saying we want to throw the Rhodes statue... in the Thames" .

He said that his own view remained the same as one "expressed by Nelson Mandela at a celebration of the Rhodes Trust in 2003": that despite the "problems associated with Cecil Rhodes in history, if it was alright for Mandela, then I have to say it's pretty well alright for me". But not for the revisionists.

Western history is seemingly being remade to portray all of Western civilization as just one big apartheid . It is as if we should not only pull down statues but also pull down ourselves. But a successful democracy, cannot be built on just erasing the past.

The statue in London of Churchill -- who stood against the Nazis during the Second World War and saved Europe from barbarism -- was covered up by the city authorities during recent protests. Its visual erasure reminds one of the nude statues in Rome covered up by authorities to please Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, or the "disappearance" of portraits in the former Soviet Union, of people whom the Politburo decided had fallen out of favor. There is a falsity in erasing one's history. One may not have a perfect history, but it is one's history, nevertheless. As the historian Victor Davis Hanson wrote , a country "does not have to be perfect to be good." Excising the distasteful parts does not change what happened; they may even be replaced with parts that are more distasteful.

Some London museums already adopted this covering-up and self-censorship a while ago. The Tate Gallery in London banned a work by John Latham that displayed a Koran embedded in glass. The Victoria and Albert Museum showed, then withdrew, a devotional art image of Muhammad. The Saatchi Gallery featured two works of nudes overlaid with Arabic script, which prompted complaints from Muslim visitors; the museum covered the works. The Whitechapel Art Gallery purged an exhibit containing nude dolls.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary just revised the definition of "racism" to include "systemic racism", presumably meaning that the entire society is guilty and unjust.

The censors seem to want to control our mental universe, as in George Orwell's novel, 1984 :

"Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right".

This process of Western self-abasement began long ago. The Labour Party councils in the UK, for example, began to examine all the statues under their jurisdiction. The mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees, instead of defending the rule of law, called the violent removal of the statue of Colston an act of " historical poetry ". When vandals started to destroy statues, many applauded. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called it " politically correct iconoclasm ".

A week before the statues row, people in the UK knelt in the name of George Floyd. It was as if there was a collective claim that Western society as a whole had to repent. It seemed a form of ideological hysteria, not so distant from that of the Inquisition or the Salem Witch Trials: those who knelt were presumably supposed appear as if they were more moral, on the "right side" of justice. There were even British policemen kneeling, as, in the US, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats knelt to their overlords. Both were acts of irresponsibility and capitulation. A few days later, the British establishment kowtowed to the new Taliban.

What is this macabre ideological game aimed at accomplishing? Not taking down monuments as such, like the statues of Christopher Columbus which have been torn down or beheaded . It is more than that. It is a power-grab to create a cultural revolution, to prevent anyone from saying that cultures are not all the same; to put Europe's past on trial; to instill perennial remorse into consciences, and to spread intellectual terror to advance multiculturalism.

How many people will refuse to go along with this coerced suppression of history? If many kneel to this new totalitarianism, who will have the courage to stand up for Western history and culture?

[Jun 23, 2020] Thoughcrimes and blogs

Jun 23, 2020 | angrybearblog.com

likbez , June 23, 2020 5:15 pm

@EMichael June 23, 2020 8:00 am

The local Thinkpol is claiming that I committed thoughtcrime :-) Nice role, is not it?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thoughtcrime

It looks like the USSR managed to bite the USA from the grave and infect plenty of people here who developed a strong allergy to any opinion different from their own. Kind of political COVID-19 virus.

Performed by you farce of playing Jewish Commissar in a leather jacket in this blog should probably be stopped.

You have neither IQ nor moral standing to judge others the way you do. And your political and other preferences are far from being interesting to anybody here.

[Jun 20, 2020] 1984 -- The writer of Truth rewrites history to fit whatever they want. Read the book. That's the news media today.

Jun 20, 2020 | taibbi.substack.com

Sean Carson Jun 12

The toxicity that Matt writes about isn't just due to Trump - it's due to the left abandoning traditional liberal values in favor of political correctness and identity politics. This new Red Guard of ideological purity is the natural - shocking - evolution of that....

Lekimball Jun 13

1984 -- The writer of Truth rewrites history to fit whatever they want. Read the book. That's the news media today. A warning leftists: Stalin and Hitler controlled the media. It's not TRUMP controlling the media. Or ignoring the truth. And it should scare the hell out of every American.

Sherry Jun 13

The twitter lynch mobs have a great deal to answer for, except they never do answer for it.

TheMadKing59 Jun 13

Crazy times indeed. It is reminiscent of the Hollywood Terror. A tipping point will come when enough people are sickened of their arbitrary and capricious cultural fascism.

Horatio Flemm Jun 13

Mr. Taibbi fires a warning shot to alert us that the "instinct (in the American media) to shield audiences from views or facts deemed politically uncomfortable has been in evidence since Trump became a national phenomenon." I would say not "since" -- that vile instinct has merely been more in evidence. The media's fear and hatred for diversity of opinion, for the freedom of speech, has doubtless worsened ...

[Jun 14, 2020] America looks like a hybrid of Stephen King, Brave New World, and 1984 and the US elites and intel agencies love it.

Jun 14, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

AriusArmenian , Jun 13 2020 19:27 utc | 22

This is looking like another 1960's type insurrection that will end up the same way: it will be used by the rich and powerful elites (notice how the corporate controlled media has gone on one knee for BLM and has gone outright anti-white?), there will be a back lash that will crush it (right after the election), and its leaders will be either absorbed into the establishment or offed.

America looks like a hybrid of Stephen King, Brave New World, and 1984 and the rich and powerful US elites and intel agencies stroke it and love it. Notice that the US super rich have been raking it in since January 2020? While at the same time Trump is busy making the US a vassal state of Israel and accelerating the roll-out of Cold War v2 which is just fine with US elites that will not change with the election of moron Biden (if the people elect Biden they are electing his VP as Biden will not last long; he is a lot like Yeltsin that was pumped up on mental stimulants and nutriments to perform for short periods until the next treatment).

What a country, what a ship of fools.

[Jun 08, 2020] Global Crisis- The Convergence Of Marx, Kafka, Orwell, Huxley -

Notable quotes:
"... This is where Orwell enters the convergence , for the State masks its stripmining and power grab with deliciously Orwellian misdirections such as "the People's Party," "democratic socialism," and so on. ..."
"... Orwell understood the State's ontological imperative is expansion, to the point where it controls every level of community, markets and society. Once the State escapes the control of the citizenry, it is free to exploit them in a parasitic predation that is the mirror-image of Monopoly capital. For what is the State but a monopoly of force, coercion, data manipulation and the regulation of private monopolies? ..."
"... Aldous Huxley foresaw a Central State that persuaded its people to "love their servitude" via propaganda, drugs, entertainment and information-overload. In his view, the energy required to force compliance exceeded the "cost" of persuasion, and thus the Powers That Be would opt for the power of suggestion. ..."
"... "My own belief is that the ruling oligarchy will find less arduous and wasteful ways of governing and of satisfying its lust for power, and these ways will resemble those which I described in Brave New World . ..."
"... As Marx explained, the dynamics of state-monopoly-capitalism lead to the complete dominance of capital over labor in both financial and political "markets," as wealth buys political influence which then protects and enforces capital's dominance. ..."
Jun 08, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com

Global Crisis: The Convergence Of Marx, Kafka, Orwell, & Huxley by Tyler Durden Mon, 06/08/2020 - 16:45 Twitter Facebook Reddit Email Print

Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,

The global crisis is not merely economic; it is the result of profound financial, sociological and political trends described by Marx, Kafka, Orwell and Huxley.

The unfolding global crisis is best understood as the convergence of the dynamics described by Marx, Kafka, Orwell and Huxley. Let's start with Franz Kafka , the writer (1883-1924) who most eloquently captured the systemic injustices of all-powerful bureaucratic institutions--the alienation experienced by the hapless citizen enmeshed in the bureaucratic web, petty officialdom's mindless persecutions of the innocent, and the intrinsic absurdity of the centralized State best expressed in this phrase: "We expect errors, not justice."

If this isn't the most insightful summary of the current moment in history, then what is? A lawyer by training and practice, Kafka understood that the the more powerful and entrenched the institution and its bureaucracy, the greater the collateral damage rained on the innocent, and the more extreme the perversion of justice.

We are living in a Kafkaesque nightmare where suspicion alone justifies the government stealing from its citizens, and an unrelated crime (possessing drug paraphernalia) is used to justify state theft.

As in a Kafkaesque nightmare, the state is above the law when it needs an excuse to steal your car or cash. There is no crime, no arrest, no due process--just the state threatening that you should shut up and be happy they don't take everything you own.

All these forms of civil forfeiture are well documented. While some would claim the worst abuses have been rectified, that is far from evident. What is evident is how long these kinds of legalized looting have been going on.

Taken: Under civil forfeiture, Americans who haven’t been charged with wrongdoing can be stripped of their cash, cars, and even homes. Is that all we’re losing? (2013)

Stop and Seize (six parts) (2013)

When the state steals our cash or car on mere suspicion, you have no recourse other than horrendously costly and time-consuming legal actions. So you no longer have enough money to prove your innocence now that we've declared your car and cash guilty?

Tough luck, bucko--be glad you live in a fake democracy with a fake rule of law, a fake judiciary, and a government with the officially sanctioned right to steal your money and possessions without any due process or court proceedings-- legalized looting .

They don't have to torture a confession out of you, like the NKVD/KGB did in the former Soviet Union, because your cash and car are already guilty.

This is where Orwell enters the convergence , for the State masks its stripmining and power grab with deliciously Orwellian misdirections such as "the People's Party," "democratic socialism," and so on.

Orwell understood the State's ontological imperative is expansion, to the point where it controls every level of community, markets and society. Once the State escapes the control of the citizenry, it is free to exploit them in a parasitic predation that is the mirror-image of Monopoly capital. For what is the State but a monopoly of force, coercion, data manipulation and the regulation of private monopolies?

What is the EU bureaucracy in Brussels but the perfection of a stateless State?

As Kafka divined, centralized bureaucracy has the capacity for both Orwellian obfuscation (anyone read those 1,300-page Congressional bills other than those gaming the system for their private benefit?) and systemic avarice and injustice.

The convergence boils down to this: it would be impossible to loot this much wealth if the State didn't exist to enforce the "rules" of parasitic predation.

Aldous Huxley foresaw a Central State that persuaded its people to "love their servitude" via propaganda, drugs, entertainment and information-overload. In his view, the energy required to force compliance exceeded the "cost" of persuasion, and thus the Powers That Be would opt for the power of suggestion.

He outlined this in a letter to George Orwell :

"My own belief is that the ruling oligarchy will find less arduous and wasteful ways of governing and of satisfying its lust for power, and these ways will resemble those which I described in Brave New World .

Within the next generation I believe that the world's rulers will discover that infant conditioning and narco-hypnosis are more efficient, as instruments of government, than clubs and prisons, and that the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging and kicking them into obedience."

As prescient as he was, Huxley could not have foreseen the power of mobile telephony, gaming and social media hypnosis/addiction as a conditioning mechanism for passivity and self-absorption. We are only beginning to understand the immense addictive/conditioning powers of 24/7 mobile telephony / social media.

What would we say about a drug that caused people to forego sex to check their Facebook page? What would we say about a drug that caused young men to stay glued to a computer for 40+ hours straight, an obsession so acute that some actually die? We would declare that drug to be far too powerful and dangerous to be widely available, yet mobile telephony, gaming and social media is now ubiquitous.

... ... ...

Last but not least, we come to Marx. As Marx explained, the dynamics of state-monopoly-capitalism lead to the complete dominance of capital over labor in both financial and political "markets," as wealth buys political influence which then protects and enforces capital's dominance.

Marx also saw that finance-capital would inevitably incentivize over-capacity, stripping industrial capital of pricing power and profits. Once there's more goods and services than labor can afford to buy with earnings, financialization arises to provide credit to labor to buy capital's surplus production and engineer financial gains with leveraged speculation and asset bubbles.

But since labor's earnings are stagnant or declining, there's an end-game to financialization. Capital can no longer generate any gain at all except by central banks agreeing to buy capital's absurdly over-valued assets. Though the players tell themselves this arrangement is temporary, the dynamics Marx described are fundamental and inexorable: the insanity of central banks creating currency out of thin air to buy insanely over-priced assets is the final crisis of late-stage capitalism because there is no other escape from collapse.

Having stripped labor of earnings and political power and extracted every last scrap of profit from over-capacity (i.e. globalization) and financialization, capital is now completely dependent on money-spewing central banks buying their phantom capital with newly printed currency, a dynamic that will eventually trigger a collapse in the purchasing power of the central banks' phantom capital (i.e. fiat currencies).

When there is no incentive to invest in real-world productive assets and every incentive to skim profits by front-running the Federal Reserve, capitalism is dead. Paraphrasing Wallerstein, "Capitalism is no longer attractive to capitalists."

We can see this for ourselves in the real world: if "renewable energy" was as profitable as some maintain, private capital would have rushed in to fund every project to maximize their gains from this new source of immense profits. But as Art Berman explained in Why the Renewable Rocket Has Failed To Launch , this hasn't been the case. Rather, "green energy" remains dependent on government subsidies in one form or another. If hydropower is removed from "renewables," all other renewables (solar, wind, etc.) provide only 4% of total global energy consumption.

Japan's stagnation exemplifies Marx's analysis: Japan's central bank has created trillions of yen out of thin air for 30 years and used this phantom capital to buy the over-valued assets of Japan's politically dominant state-capitalist class, a policy that has led to secular stagnation and social decline. If it weren't for China's one-off expansion, Japan's economy would have slipped into phantom capital oblivion decades ago.

Kafka, Orwell, Huxley and Marx called it, and we're living in the last-gasp stage of the cruel and unsustainable system they described. So sorry, but investing your phantom capital in FANG stocks, Tik-Tok and virtual-reality games will not save phantom capital from well-deserved oblivion.

[May 23, 2020] The wristband and microchip sound fab for children under 18 so we monitor to ensure their safety

May 23, 2020 | discussion.theguardian.com

fredmb , 11 Apr 2019 06:49

The wristband and microchip sound fab for children under 18 so we monitor to ensure their safety, especially in educational settings and on school trips. It would enable them to be located if lost or snatched. If it can be used to monitor language and aspects of behaviour then they could not be falsely accused of of antisocial actions. If they don't comply then child care benefits or access to higher education could be withdrawn as a sanction. It may even improve road safety if they drive illegally or badly. Any chance of a tiny electric shock feature to the microchip?

[May 21, 2020] Orwell's career was a lot more complicated than that. Basically, he came from a relatively prosperous middle-class family, which allowed him to play the game of the writer, when it worked, and to come back to the family when things were thin

May 21, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 , May 20 2020 18:51 utc | 26

If you thought you knew everything about Eric Blair/George Orwell, I suggest reading this essay as a test. Hopefully, you'll discover many facets not known before as I did.

H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 21:40 utc | 33

Posted by: oldhippie | May 20 2020 20:23 utc | 30

Orwell's career was a lot more complicated than that. Basically, he came from a relatively prosperous middle-class family, which allowed him to play the game of the writer, when it worked, and to come back to the family when things were thin. Of course he exploited his own experiences, as every writer does. That doesn't detract from the great creations. Animal Farm and 1984 don't have direct origins.

Posted by: Laguerre | May 20 2020 21:39 utc | 32 @Posted by: karlof1 | May 20 2020 18:51 utc | 26

That essay is a real shame, an impossible intend of whitewashing and redime Orwell, just another intent on rewritting of history, and try to paint what is black as white. Neo-language
This intent could be inscribed along the rescues of Stepan Bandera and the Forest Brothers as new heroes of NATO world in their offensive against reviving socialist ideas.

That Orwell did not change even a bit after returning from Burma is proven by the fact that he came to Spain, and strolled around there with the Trotskyites of POUM, to elaborate black lists of communists which then were provided to Franco, at result of which many people was tortured and summarily executed. He, this way, contributed greatly to decimate the resistance in the side of the legitimate republican government, and thus, to help the fascists in their way to power, well supported by the US with arms and fuel and by the air forces of fascist Italy and Nazi Germany.

... ... ...

https://twitter.com/ciudadfutura/status/1263150511412346881

Orwell: Sneak sighting of British secret services in the Cold War (is declassified by MI-5 and documented). Its function: to expose communists. He even betrayed Charles Chaplin, exiled in his native England for FBI persecution. "Referrer". "Always loyal"

https://twitter.com/ciudadfutura/status/1262794482963091460

Albert Escusa: Who was George Orwell really? Orwellian myths: from the Spanish Civil War to the Soviet holocaust

H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 22:08 utc | 36

@Posted by: H.Schmatz | May 20 2020 21:40 utc | 33

In the essay by Alert Escusa linked above, it is studied the historical context in which Orwell published his most famous works, at all innocent, debunking the legend on that he was kinda an outsider and was about to self-publish Animal Farm , being the checked reality that he had full support of the birgueoisie to publish his influential works when the time was more propice for the capitalists.

As a sample, a button:

What was happening that year of 1943, while Orwell was writing his Animal Farm? It was not exactly, as Pepe Gutiérrez says "the distribution of the world", but something quite different that he hides from us: the Nazis had invaded the USSR two years ago, exterminating millions of Russians and devastating much of the country. The greatest battle of the war, Stalingrad, had taken place, and it was not yet known who would win the conflict, whether Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union. No one could safely predict that Nazism would be extirpated from Europe, the Nazi death camps had not yet been discovered, but Orwell was obsessed with his anti-Soviet writings. What did Orwell want to portray with his Farm Rebellion? Nothing more and nothing less than the following: "The specific purpose Orwell threw into it with a sense of urgency was the desire to exploit the "myth" of the Soviet Union, as a paradigm of the socialist state".

There are plenty of comments about it. It is only worth reflecting on who benefited from Orwell's position in 1943. The victory was precisely achieved by the Soviet people and the Red Army at the price of innumerable human sacrifices, also easily forgotten in the West, where the true character of the anti-fascist war is hidden. It is logical that the USSR, which had suffered a war of extermination unprecedented in history, and which also defeated the collaborationist and fascist regimes of Eastern Europe, along with the popular and communist guerrillas, was seen as a liberating power by broad sectors of local populations. In addition, the communist guerrillas, ideologically linked to the USSR, had come to have great prestige throughout Europe: so much so that, in the first French general elections after Nazism, the French Communist Party was the most voted party, achieving more out of 5 million votes representing 30% of the electorate [7]. As we will see later, the USSR had very well-founded reasons to believe that a new war was being prepared against him, this time with the country devastated, so it was logical and legitimate that he try to win allies against the possibility of a new world war. This is a long way from "distribution of the world" and trying to equate imperialism with socialism, as will be seen later.


karlof1 , May 20 2020 22:47 utc | 42
I must say the replies to my 26 go in many directions. As to Martin Sieff's essay, it's fundamentally a well deserved critique of the BBC that segues into a discussion about how George Orwell would easily recognize its Fake News for what it is that draws on Finding George Orwell in Burma for some of its content. (A very short preview's available at the link and it can be borrowed if you're an Archive member, for which there's no excuse as it's free.) IMO, the comments fit Sieff's intent quite well. Judging from book excerpts offered here , the book's more a critique of Myanmar than Orwell, although the additional sources provided at page bottom leads to credibility questions. I also note that most websites promoting Finding lead with the NY Times jacket blurb which is more about dissing Myanmar than revealing what was found regarding Orwell. Sieff says he knows the author but doesn't speculate on why he chose a female nom de plume; I too wonder why as I don't see what purpose it could serve unless it's anti-Myanmar propaganda that Orwell would recognize or something similar.

Curious--an innocuous comment becomes a can of worms. Also curious how Orwell and his writing still generate an intense level of controversy.

karlof1 , May 20 2020 22:47 utc | 42 H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 22:52 utc | 43
@Posted by: H.Schmatz | May 20 2020 22:08 utc | 36

A bit more from the must read essay linked, even related to current events...

2. THE HISTORICAL ENVIRONMENT OF "ANIMAL FARM" AND "1984"

What events were taking place in the western world at that time, which caused a favorable change of attitude towards Orwell's publications, of those who were previously reticent? Neither more nor less than the imminent offensive against socialism, which had already lost almost thirty million lives during the anti-fascist war and had suffered appalling material destruction.

While the first copies of Animal Farm were being printed and bound, some extremely disturbing events were taking place. Just at the end of the war, Nazi spies and war criminals were being recycled by the American spy services, such as the German SS General Reinhard Genhlen, whose spy network passed entirely to the Americans and was used in Eastern Europe to promote the anti-Soviet uprisings in East Berlin in 1953 and Hungary in 1956. Clandestine networks were created to evade thousands of Nazi criminals towards Latin America and the USA. Later, with Japan defeated, the operation was repeated with the Japanese scientists who are experts in bacteriological weapons, responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of allied prisoners, but who were secretly brought to the United States. Meanwhile, during the 1945 Potsdam conference, which brought together Hitler's victorious allies - where the alleged "honeymoon" took place to "divide the world" - US President Truman and English Churchill had speculated before Stalin about the power the western allies had with a new secret weapon. On August 6, 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. According to Ian Gray, Stalin's biographer: "Stalin and the majority of Russians immediately understood the terrible meaning of this fact ... Stalin realized that the Americans had used the bomb mainly to impress and threaten Russia". Stalin and the Soviets were right: the American Secretary of State, James Byrnes, recognized that the bomb was necessary not against Japan, but "to make Russia moldable to Europe".

As the historian Pauwels has explained, the initial will of the Soviets in Europe was not to have like-minded regimes and their own zone of influence, but to intervene in Germany to prevent it from engaging in a second war, this time together with its former allies against the USSR. This is demonstrated by the fact that until well into the post-war period, the Soviets did not help to make any political-social change in the liberated countries. It was Truman's nuclear policy that forced the Soviets to stand face to face with the Americans in Eastern Europe, thus deterring American aviation: from this way they would have to carry out a long trip until arriving at the Soviet cities where they had to drop their bombs. This caused the political and social changes in Eastern Europe to accelerate, which, however, were already taking place autonomously since the end of the war thanks to the triumph of the popular anti-fascist forces. This fact not only saved the USSR from a new war and enabled socialism to survive: stability in Eastern Europe laid the foundations for a development of national liberation struggles and for socialism throughout the world: in 1949 the victory of the Chinese Revolution heralded the triumph of many others, putting all capitalism in danger of death.

In parallel, just after the Cold War started by imperialism, the conservative British leader Churchill theorized about the need to build an Iron Curtain to contain the communists and allegedly asked the American President Truman to attack the USSR with the atomic bomb by means of a preemptive attack. Churchill was not just any character, but one of the most influential leaders of the British Empire, champion of English colonialism and the participation of his country in World War I, therefore responsible for many millions of deaths and suffering of peoples.

That was the real reason for the delay in publishing Animal Farm . Orwell, naturally, during the anti-fascist war could not see his anti-Soviet work published until the end of the conflict, since it would have been quite awkward for the Western governments allied to the USSR, who were risking their lives against the Nazis, to criminalize in this way a friendly government. On the other hand, at that time, from the Orwellian model, it would be difficult for western and world public opinion to understand how it was possible that the Soviet people fought with such a degree of sacrifice and heroism, expelling the Nazis from Europe: all the other bourgeois regimes, where there was freedom, had collapsed rapidly and had collaborated with the Nazis.
It was in connection with these events that the first copies of Animal farm were placed on the shelves of bookstores. Precisely the publication coincided with the end of World War II and the dissolution of the anti-fascist alliance between England, USA, and the USSR. The first edition is exactly from 1945 in England, published by Secker & Wargburg, from London, and from 1946 in the USA, published by Harcourt, from New York. The capitalist governments, which were imminently going to promote Animal Farm , were evaluating different options to attack the USSR: from rearming German units as shock brigades to attack the Soviets, to the launch of "preventive" atomic bombs. The prestige that the USSR had among all the workers of the world, fundamentally the Europeans who suffered the Nazi atrocities, was enormous, as well as among the intellectual and popular sectors, whose reflection could be followed in the great influence that some communist parties had. It was necessary to dismantle this prestige to sweep the opposition of the world public opinion to an armed aggression against those who liberated Europe from Nazism, and Orwell's novels came as a ring to a finger for this purpose, since they were a good instrument to spread among the so called mass culture, just as later were the film versions of his works.


H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 22:59 utc | 46
@Posted by: karlof1 | May 20 2020 22:47 utc | 42

Albert Escusa, gives in his essay a good semblance of what kind of person could Orwell really be:

Orwell was above all a great individualist, with some important personal contradictions and prejudices that led him to oscillate along various paths without being able to commit himself in a stable and permanent way to anything that was not himself, in such a way that, when he became disenchanted with some social processes that he was unable to interpret correctly and scientifically, ended up ranting against what he believed to be the object of his anger.

We can see it in Corbière's sharp description: "Who was Orwell? A sniper, a skeptic who devoted his efforts to Manichean criteria describing the great social and political contradictions of our time. Anarchist, Semitrotskyist in Spain, Labor in England, free thinker, undercover anti-Semite, his real ideas reveal a kind of elitism.

He had an intense imagination but his methodology of thought was restricted, one-sided.

H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 23:05 utc | 47
@Posted by: Kerry | May 20 2020 22:44 utc | 38

No that I am aware, but, if interested, you could translate it with a translator.
Since the essay is quite long, you could translate paragraph by paragraph, then read the whol thing once assembled.

A bit complicated, but worth the effort, the essay is a well researched work, wu¡ith several referecnes as weel worth reading, like a disection of Orwell, his epoch and motives.

oldhippie , May 20 2020 23:13 utc | 48
Oh dear. Relatively prosperous middle class means descended from Earls of Westmorland, family tree of Fanes, de Veres, Grosvenors, at a little reach basically related to the entire peerage. True, Orwell's father was a bit of a dope, he did manage to contract a marriage to a very wealthy woman. Jacintha Buddicom's memoir, Eric and Us, about growing up living next door to the Blairs, will tell you what 'middle class' life was like.

Orwell maintained the friendships from St. Cyprians and Eton for life. Pretty much everyone on the roster could be considered as spooks and agents. All of them tied to old money, old family, government service. Government as MI6 and CIA.

I think he's a great writer. My copy of the four volumes of Collected Essays Letters & Journalism is still right here next to the fireplace. All the rest of it around here somewhere, even the minor novels from the 30s. But no illusions what team he is on or what station he was born to.

Winston Smith means 'maker of Winston', as in broadcasting from Room 101 and forging the myth of Winston Churchill. Orwell was a big boy when he did that and was far past having any illusions. He created the myth that Room 101 of Broadcasting House was the worst place in the world. And talked of how the war years were the best years of his life.

H.Schmatz , May 20 2020 23:31 utc | 49
@Posted by: oldhippie | May 20 2020 23:13 utc | 48
I think he's a great writer

Not even so, more proper a plagiarist and propagandist at the service of Western totalitarian imperialism.

Since we are in the task of deconstructing Orwell, let´s go to the end...

In addition to the Animal Farm , one of the works that most influenced the construction of Western totalitarianism against the Communists was 1984 . It shows an overview of socialism in the USSR similar to a delusional totalitarian and monstrous drama, with a Big Brother (Stalin) who had absolute social control over the individuals under his rule, through a sophisticated mind control mechanism. This work became a must-read for CIA officers and a dependent body called the Council for Psychological Strategies, in addition to the fact that NATO used the entire vocabulary of this novel during the 1950s in its anti-communist strategy.12 It is interesting to know how He conceived this book, since it was apparently a plagiarism Orwell did to another disenchanted of Bolshevism, in this case a Russian writer, in the opinion of the writer Emilio J. Corbière: "Orwell's was a conscious plagiarism, since he explained it himself in another of his works. The plot, the main characters, the symbols and the climate of its narration, belonged to a completely forgotten Russian writer of the beginning of the century: Evgeny Zamyatin. In his book We , the Russian disillusioned with socialism after the failure of the 1905 revolution, devoted his efforts to anathematizing the Social Democratic Workers Party founded by Jorge Plejanov. When the October revolution happened - in 1917 - Zamyatin went into exile in Paris, where he wrote his posthumous anti-communist work"

This opinion is also shared by the historian Isaac Deutscher in his work The Mysticism of Cruelty , an essay about 1984 , where he states that Orwell "borrowed the idea of ​​1984, the plot, the main characters, the symbols and the whole plot situation from the work We of Evgeny Zamyatin"

We see how behind the image of a great writer, lies the reality of a plagiarist of stories, which served to elaborate theoretical and academic models on the functioning of socialism in the Soviet Union totally adjusted to the requirements of imperialism in the anti-communist Cold War. The impact of 1984 was tremendous among the population, creating an atmosphere of anti-communist and anti-Soviet paranoia that was very effective among the masses, as the disturbing personal testimony of Isaac Deutscher demonstrates: "Have you read that book? You have to read it, sir. Then you will know why we have to drop the atomic bomb on the Bolsheviks! With those words, a miserable blind newspaper vendor recommended me in New York 1984 , a few weeks before Orwell's death".


arby , May 20 2020 23:45 utc | 50
H. Schmatz.
I am not a good book reader but I did read 1984 and it definitely seemed to be a veiled critique on Communism.
However it seems the story is now more fitting to capitalism.

[May 21, 2020] How the British Empire Created and Killed George Orwell by Martin Sieff

May 20, 2020 | www.strategic-culture.org

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), happily amplified by the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) in the United States which carries its World News, continues to pump out its regular dreck about the alleged economic chaos in Russia and the imagined miserable state of the Russian people.

It is all lies of course. Patrick Armstrong 's authoritative regular updates including his reports on this website are a necessary corrective to such crude propaganda.

But amid all their countless fiascoes and failures in every other field (including the highest per capita death rate from COVID-19 in Europe, and one of the highest in the world) the British remain world leaders at managing global Fake News. As long as the tone remains restrained and dignified, literally any slander will be swallowed by the credulous and every foul scandal and shame can be confidently covered up.

None of this would have surprised the late, great George Orwell. It is fashionable these days to endlessly trot him out as a zombie (dead but alleged to be living – so that he cannot set the record straight himself) critic of Russia and all the other global news outlets outside the control of the New York and London plutocracies. And it is certainly true, that Orwell, whose hatred and fear of communism was very real, served before his death as an informer to MI-5, British domestic security.

But it was not the Soviet Union, Stalin's show trials or his experiences with the Trotskyite POUM group in Barcelona and Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War that "made Orwell Orwell" as the Anglo-America Conventional Wisdom Narrative has it. It was his visceral loathing of the British Empire – compounded during World War II by his work for the BBC which he eventually gave up in disgust.

And it was his BBC experiences that gave Orwell the model for his unforgettable Ministry of Truth in his great classic "1984."

George Orwell had worked in one of the greatest of all world centers of Fake News. And he knew it.

More profoundly, the great secret of George Orwell's life has been hiding in plain sight for 70 years since he died. Orwell became a sadistic torturer in the service of the British Empire during his years in Burma, modern Myanmar. And as a fundamentally decent man, he was so disgusted by what he had done that he spent the rest of his life not just atoning but slowly and willfully committing suicide before his heartbreakingly premature death while still in his 40s.

The first important breakthrough in this fundamental reassessment of Orwell comes from one of the best books on him. "Finding George Orwell in Burma" was published in 2005 and written by "Emma Larkin", a pseudonym for an outstanding American journalist in Asia whose identity I have long suspected to be an old friend and deeply respected colleague, and whose continued anonymity I respect.

"Larkin" took the trouble to travel widely in Burma during its repressive military dictatorship and her superb research reveals crucial truths about Orwell. According to his own writings and his deeply autobiographical novel "Burmese Days" Orwell loathed all his time as a British colonial policeman in Burma, modern Myanmar. The impression he systematically gives in that novel and in his classic essay "Shooting an Elephant" is of a bitterly lonely, alienated, deeply unhappy man, despised and even loathed by his fellow British colonialists throughout society and a ludicrous failure at his job.

This was not, however, the reality that "Larkin" uncovered. All surviving witnesses agreed that Orwell – Eric Blair as he then still was – remained held in high regard during his years in the colonial police service. He was a senior and efficient officer. Indeed it was precisely his knowledge of crime, vice, murder and the general underside of human society during his police colonial service while still in his 20s that gave him the street smarts, experience, and moral authority to see through all the countless lies of right and left, of American capitalists and British imperialists as well as European totalitarians for the rest of his life.

The second revelation to throw light on what Orwell had to do in those years comes from one of the most famous and horrifying scenes in "1984." Indeed, almost nothing even in the memoirs of Nazi death camp survivors has anything like it: That is the scene where "O'Brien", the secret police officer tortures the "hero" (if he can be called that) Winston Smith by locking his face to a cage in which a starving rat is ready to pounce and devour him if it is opened.

I remember thinking, when I was first exposed to the power of "1984" at my outstanding Northern Irish school, "What kind of mind could invent something as horrific as that?") The answer was so obvious that I like everyone else missed it entirely.

Orwell did not "invent" or "come up" with the idea as a fictional plot device: It was just a routine interrogation technique used by the British colonial police in Burma, modern Myanmar. Orwell never "brilliantly" invented such a diabolical technique of torture as a literary device. He did not have to imagine it. It was routinely employed by himself and his colleagues. That was how and why the British Empire worked so well for so long. They knew what they were doing. And what they did was not nice at all.

A final step in my enlightenment about Orwell, whose writings I have revered all my life – and still do – was provided by our alarmingly brilliant elder daughter about a decade ago when she too was given "1984" to read as part of her school curriculum. Discussing it with her one day, I made some casual obvious remark that Orwell was in the novel as Winston Smith.

My American-raised teenager then naturally corrected me. "No, Dad, " she said. "Orwell isn't Winston, or he's not just Winston. He's O'Brien too. O'Brien actually likes Winston. He doesn't want to torture him. He even admires him. But he does it because it's his duty."

She was right, of course.

But how could Orwell the great enemy of tyranny, lies and torture so identify with and understand so well the torturer? It was because he himself had been one.

"Emma Larkin's" great book brings out that Orwell as a senior colonial police officer in the 1920s was a leading figure in a ruthless war waged by the British imperial authorities against drug and human trafficking crime cartels every bit as vicious and ruthless as those in modern Ukraine, Columbia and Mexico today. It was a "war on terror" where anything and everything was permitted to "get the job done."

The young Eric Blair was so disgusted by the experience that when he returned home he abandoned the respectable middle class life style he had always enjoyed and became, not just an idealistic socialist as many in those days did, but a penniless, starving tramp. He even abandoned his name and very identity. He suffered a radical personality collapse: He killed Eric Blair. He became George Orwell.

Orwell's early famous book "Down and Out in London and Paris" is a testament to how much he literally tortured and humiliated himself in those first years back from Burma. And for the rest of his life.

He ate miserably badly, was skinny and ravaged by tuberculosis and other health problems, smoked heavily and denied himself any decent medical care. His appearance was always abominable. His friend, the writer Malcolm Muggeridge speculated that Orwell wanted to remake himself as a caricature of a tramp.

The truth clearly was that Orwell never forgave himself for what he did as a young agent of empire in Burma. Even his literally suicidal decision to go to the most primitive, cold, wet and poverty-stricken corner of creation in a remote island off Scotland to finish "1984" in isolation before he died was consistent with the merciless punishments he had inflicted on himself all his life since leaving Burma.

The conclusion is clear: For all the intensity of George Orwell's experiences in Spain, his passion for truth and integrity, his hatred of the abuse of power did not originate from his experiences in the Spanish Civil War. They all flowed directly from his own actions as an agent of the British Empire in Burma in the 1920s: Just as his creation of the Ministry of Truth flowed directly from his experience of working in the Belly of the Beast of the BBC in the early 1940s.

George Orwell spent more than 20 years slowly committing suicide because of the terrible crimes he committed as a torturer for the British Empire in Burma. We can therefore have no doubt what his horror and disgust would be at what the CIA did under President George W. Bush in its "Global War on Terror." Also, Orwell would identify at once and without hesitation the real fake news flowing out of New York, Atlanta, Washington and London today, just as he did in the 1930s and 1940s.

Let us therefore reclaim and embrace The Real George Orwell: The cause of fighting to prevent a Third World War depends on it.

[May 11, 2020] What If The Crisis Is One Without End... Like George Orwell's Perpetual War by Luke Eastwood

May 10, 2020 | www.zerohedge.com
Submitted by Luke Eastwood Notions of Freedom

We are living in strange times indeed, this crisis raises many questions about the nature of freedom and what our expectations are, or should be. Everyone has their own notions about what freedom means and how far that should extend to oneself and indeed, to everyone else.

I want to start with a look at where we've come from before I look at where we are now, as I feel it gives a better understanding of our definitions of freedom and a better context for viewing where we are, at this moment in time.

Society probably started with the tribe – maybe not even having a leader if the numbers where small enough, say 10 people. Tribes of scores or more obviously became hard to manage and so, undoubtedly, this led to the idea of a leader or a group of leaders – a chief, or a council of chiefs. Such a system seems to have worked well, so long as the chiefs acted in the best interest of the tribe, and not in their own best interest. Tribes and early kingdoms often had a mechanism for dealing with a poor leader – the symbolic marriage of the leader to the land and the right to depose, or even execute, a leader that failed to live up to expectations.

Such concepts of leadership are ancient but have survived in various places into the modern era, including Ireland where I live. Although the practice associated with this custom is long gone, knowledge of it remains vaguely in the public consciousness and more definitively in the realms of scholarship and Celtic Neo-Paganism. However, societies across the globe began to move beyond this cherished accountability millenia ago – with the rise of despotic monarchy, something that still exists as an unfortunate anachronism even now.

As tribes grew into countries and countries grew into empires, monarchs became decreasingly accountable to their citizens, or rather subjects – those who are subjugated. While many monarchs felt an obligation, both 'divine' and moral to behave with care and responsibility, others acted in pure self interest, free of any accountability for their actions. With the backing a large army or, sizeable personal guard, it became increasing difficult to hold monarchs accountable and one had to rely on goodwill in most cases, rather than enforcement.

Of course, there have been countless deposing of monarchs, by the people or by rival claimants, although the latter didn't always turn out to be beneficial. Probably the most famous of these is that of Galus Julius Caesar, the Dictator for life of the final years of the Roman Republic, who gave his name to the title Caesar, Czar and Keiser. He was brutally murdered by Brutus (hence the word brutal) and we all know how that turned out the for Roman Republic.

The republic itself was a form of democracy, based on an earlier model from Greece, a civilization that had immense influence on Rome. Of course, Athenian democracy was nothing like what we now regard as democracy. The right to decide how government was organised and what it did fell to the hands of an elite group - demokratia , or "rule by the people" was only for citizens and of these, only the men could vote. At the time (507 BC) this meant 40,000 men, out of a much larger population, but in reality no more than about 5000 men could attend assemblies, due to other commitments. Still, it was a ground-breaking step, so long as you weren't a foreigner, criminal, woman, child or a slave.

It is from these Greek origins that we get the word democracy and the notion of rights and freedom for all. Over time there have been variations on this model that have been tried out – constitutional monarchies, republics, socialist states, fascist states and communist states, which have varying levels of input for the masses. The masses might also be referred to as 'plebeians' as the Romans liked to call ordinary folk, a corrupted form of which still exists as a minor insult - pleb.

However, through most of recorded history, the most common system has been monarchy, although one could hardly describe it as the most popular. Simpler than a democracy and easy to enforce – notions such as corruption, fairness and accountability do not come into play, as divine rule (e.g. the divine right of kings) gives the ruler carte blanche to do whatever they god-damn like, unless their despotism provokes a revolt. Of course, revolt has happened, from time to time, throughout history and one of the most famous ones is that of the barons in England against king John.

The Magna Carta (Great Charter, of 1215) is considered by many as the bedrock of Western civilization and democracy, despite the fact that it only gave limited concessions to a very small number of nobles. It was a start at least, and perhaps enabled further inroads into the monarchic monopoly on power. The Peasants' Revolt of 1381, against Richard II of England was a major shift. Led by a commoner (Wat Tyler) it was a great embarrassment for Richard, who did not have a standing army on hand. He was forced to pretend to negotiate with the rebels, who camped at Blackheath, while he secretly ordered the Mayor of London to raise an army to disperse and execute the protestors.

There are countless other examples of rebellion against monarchs across the world, but most of them are forgotten. Perhaps the best remembered rebellion is that of the French paupers, against the Bourbon monarchy and the entire aristocracy of France. This violent and bloodthirsty revolution sent shudders of terror across the monarchies of the world and precipitated a programme of reform, based on fear of similar events occurring.

Of course, some countries carried on regardless – Russia and America being particularly sad examples, as Russia only abolished serfdom in 1861, while USA only abolished slavery in 1865. One could justifiably say that the lives of these ordinary people, who were now 'citizens' hardly improved as their freedom was pretty much nominal. This, in Russia, led to the revolution of 1917, due to the intransigence of the Czar/Tsar (Caesar) Nicholai II Alexandrovich Romanov II. The overthrow of the Russian system, inspired by the ideas of Marx and Engels, led to a Bolshevik government headed by Vladimir Lenin. Whatever notions the Soviets had, Lenin was a de facto Tzar in waiting and Stalin was certainly that, if not an uncrowned heir to Ivan The Terrible.

Post World War II, we supposedly have a new age of democracy and freedom, but that only applies to some. In truth, almost the whole world collection of governments has learned the art of propaganda - thanks to the astounding upskilling efforts of the National Socialists (Nazis) of Germany, who took this to new heights (or lows rather), turning it almost into an artform. While we have been led to believe that we are free and democratic, we have never been more exposed to lies and propaganda than we are now. The biggest lie of all is that we live in a democracy, when in fact we actually only get to choose a new set of corrupt and self-serving narcissists, every 4 or 5 years.

Democracies, the world over, have been bought – lobbyists have far more power than the electorate could ever hope to achieve. What we in fact have is the illusion of democracy – state agencies act without oversight, individuals have no say over the manifesto and policies of parties in power and have no mechanism to undo or prevent undesirable actions by governments. The only mechanisms available are the occasional referenda (instigated under pressure), protest (peaceful or otherwise) and violent overthrow.

In most cases, the effort and risk of violent overthrow is considered too much for the majority of people – it takes dire poverty, starvation and horrific coercion before the 'plebs' are pushed to the brink. Governments are aware of this and generally apply the 'boiling frog' method of restricting people's freedoms and the removal of privacy and general rights. However, they do on occasion overstep the mark or fail to adequately conceal their stealthy nefarious actions – which inevitably leads to protest or insurrection.

History has proven that violent insurrection usually fails, but it is rather foolish of authoritarian governments to take a gamble on this not happening. What is far more effective for us 'plebs' is non-violent insurrection, in the form of non-compliance - this worked wonders for both Gandhi and for Martin Luther-King, two of the most inspirational leaders of the 20th century. Nelson Mandella is another fine example of someone who led a monumental change, in South Africa, while also avoiding a catastrophic bloodbath, again through advocating of non-violence and showing exceptional leadership skills.

At this moment in time, we are held hostage by a virus and the fear of what it might do to humanity. While public safety has to be a priority, one has to ask the question – what is this really about? Is this a manufactured crisis or is it is just opportunistic governments capitalizing on their best chance to roll out new draconian measures? Temporary emergency powers is one thing, but if there is no rollback after the crisis is over, what then? What if the crisis is one without end – like George Orwell's perpetual war in his novel 1984?

We have come to expect freedom, we are told that we live in the 'free world' yet we see our rights and freedoms and privacy being eroded by government legislation, corporate invasive technology and data collection. Where do we draw the line? When do we say enough is enough? Strangely, the same technology that enables our surveillance monitoring is also the most powerful tool at our disposal. Internet and telecommunications enables us to share information, just as the 'system' collects information about all of us. For many, it has opened our eyes about government agendas, methods and operations as we now have unprecedented access to worldwide information, often in real-time, or within minutes and hours of events happening.

Many believe that a new era of oppression is being rolled out, right now as we sit in our homes, enabled by the high-power, high-speed and low latency 5G network, worldwide by a hidden agency. Conspiracies aside, there are many questions to be asked about our rights, what our freedoms should consist of and what the limits of government and corporate actions should be. We need to ask those questions, we need to demand answers and show the 'powers that be' that the thirst for true democracy is still alive and kicking. If we volunteer to be imprisoned or to become our own jailors then there is no hope for humanity. As in the past, humanity needs to assert itself, in order to remain free of despotism and it has never been more urgent than now. Corny as it may be, the simplest way to express this is for me to repeat the words of the late Bob Marley - "Get up, stand up, stand up for your rights!"

Read more work by Luke at lukeeastwood.com

[May 04, 2020] Death A Simple Idea with a Powerful Punch by Edward Curtin

Notable quotes:
"... There is little doubt that the modern cult of power worship is bound up with the modern man's feeling that life here and now is the only life there is. If death ends everything, it becomes much harder to believe that you can be in the right even if you are defeated . I would say that the decay in the belief in personal immortality has been as important as the rise of machine civilization. ..."
"... Since society is held together by this myth system – the beliefs and values people live for and live by – that sustains it, societies have always had to offer symbolic "answers" to death. For without a meaningful symbolic for coming to terms with death, human action would be stymied and people would be reduced to what the psychiatrist Allan Wheelis termed "intense, preoccupying yearning." ..."
"... When leaders speak, the children hear the inner voices of their parents telling them to be careful, be very careful, the bogeyman is everywhere, so listen and obey. Freud, the Jewish atheist, and Dostoevsky, the Russian Orthodox Christian, were in agreement about people's desire to give up their freedom to authority figures who would allegedly shelter them within their warm embrace. ..."
"... The easiest way to do this is to convince people that death is stalking them, for the bogeyman is always death in one form or another. ..."
"... It works to get people to support the terrifying sadism of wars against fabricated "others, ..."
"... It works to get people to give up their freedoms out of fear of "terrorists," who are said to slide and hide in the interstices of everyday life, ready to pounce and kill at any moment. ..."
"... For the Grand Inquisitor represents those power elites across the world who wish to cower people into accepting their dicta on Covid-19 as truth without questioning its logic or rationale. ..."
"... The use of technology to control behaviour by denying holidays to people, denying promotions etc all based on credit scores and similar monitoring has to be seen by the wealthy as a model of what can be achieved by the combination of ruthless force and control over information. ..."
"... All are brainwashed from birth. Its not "capitalism" its is a parasitic banking cabals economy . ..."
"... When the education system has been designed to eliminate the use of critical thinking and the purveyors of propaganda control the vast majority of the MSM, academia plus the creation of a veneer of democracy, it is little wonder so many people have swallowed this lie. ..."
"... many who call themselves atheists worship science( but not science as knowledge as it originally meant) ..."
"... The cabal wants only their narrative( lies as the truth) they want the truth of who we are and that we are co creators in this world unknown to us . ..."
May 03, 2020 | off-guardian.org

Since death is one idea that has no history except as an idea and not a reality any of us have experienced, it is the most frightening idea there is and also quite simple. It is the ultimate unknown. It has always haunted human beings, whether consciously or unconsciously.

It lies at the root of war, violence, religion, art, love, and civilization. The good and the bad, the beautiful and the ugly, why we like to win and not lose, pass and not fail, "pass on" and not die. It is so funny and so sad. We would be lost without it, even when we feel lost when thinking about it. And it is fundamental for understanding the action and reaction to Covid-19.

Societies have always been people banded together in the face of death. And since people are not just physical beings but symbolic creatures who can think and imagine the past and the future, societies are necessarily mythic symbol systems whose job is not only to protect people physically, but symbolically as well.

Sometimes, however, the protection is a protection racket with racketeers holding people hostage to fabricated fears that keep them locked in a living-death.

Thus death, this most potent imaginative idea and reality that doesn't exist except as a mystery about which anything we say is speculation, can be used for good and evil, depending on who controls society.

Death is the great fear, the human haunting that hangs by a thread over life like the sword of Damocles.

In 1944 in a newspaper column, George Orwell made an astute remark:

There is little doubt that the modern cult of power worship is bound up with the modern man's feeling that life here and now is the only life there is. If death ends everything, it becomes much harder to believe that you can be in the right even if you are defeated . I would say that the decay in the belief in personal immortality has been as important as the rise of machine civilization.

Beliefs, of course, like "personal immortality" and all others, such as the recent rise in the belief in atheism, which is as much a belief as belief in God, are, partially at least, relative to time and place, and develop out of social storytelling. The "hard facts" on which many feel their lives and security rest are themselves dependent upon the symbols which give them legitimacy.

Reality is indeed precarious with society suspended by a web of myths and symbols. It is through cultural and social symbol systems that society's meaning is transmitted to individuals, and it is within the symbol systems that the control and release of action resides.

In today's electronic mass media world, those who control the mass media that control the narrative flow – the storytelling – control the majority's beliefs and actions.

Since society is held together by this myth system – the beliefs and values people live for and live by – that sustains it, societies have always had to offer symbolic "answers" to death. For without a meaningful symbolic for coming to terms with death, human action would be stymied and people would be reduced to what the psychiatrist Allan Wheelis termed "intense, preoccupying yearning."

Today we can hear such yearning everywhere.

Shortly after Orwell made his prescient comment in The Tribune, nuclear weapons were developed and used by the United States to kill hundreds of thousands of innocent Japanese civilians. With those weapons and their use, the ages-old symbolic narrative of life and death was transformed in a flash.

"The significance of the possibility of nuclear death is that it radically affects the meaning of death, of immortality, of life itself," wrote Hans Morgenthau.

The traditional symbolic sources that once served to allow humans to transcend death were fundamentally undercut, and the search for new modes of death transcendence was carried on beneath the portentous covering of the nuclear umbrella.

A qualitative transformation in the meaning of human existence was thus brought about as humans, who had the weapons, replaced the belief in God as the holder of the power over life and death, since nuclear war could result in the extinction of human life, leaving no one left to die.

This is our world today, and it is where the Covid-19 story takes place. A world not just of nuclear fear, but a host of other fears constantly inflamed by the mass media that hypnotize people through the conjuring of death-fear.

In his great work on group psychology, Freud showed us how it was not just mental contagion and the herd instinct that got people to join in group behavior. People could be induced to become little children and obey their leaders because they have "an extreme passion for authority."

When leaders speak, the children hear the inner voices of their parents telling them to be careful, be very careful, the bogeyman is everywhere, so listen and obey. Freud, the Jewish atheist, and Dostoevsky, the Russian Orthodox Christian, were in agreement about people's desire to give up their freedom to authority figures who would allegedly shelter them within their warm embrace.

The easiest way to do this is to convince people that death is stalking them, for the bogeyman is always death in one form or another.

It works to get people to support the terrifying sadism of wars against fabricated "others," who are always portrayed as aliens who are out to kill the good people.

It works to get people to give up their freedoms out of fear of "terrorists," who are said to slide and hide in the interstices of everyday life, ready to pounce and kill at any moment.

And it works to get people to obey orders to protect themselves from terrifying viruses that are lying in wait everywhere to strike them dead.

In his novel The Brothers Karamazov , Dostoevsky said that people want miracles, mystery, and authority, not freedom. His Grand Inquisitor, while a fictional creation, lives on in reality.

For the Grand Inquisitor represents those power elites across the world who wish to cower people into accepting their dicta on Covid-19 as truth without questioning its logic or rationale.

To question has become an act of insubordination deserving death by censorship or the defiling of one's name via the term "conspiracy theorist," a name used by the CIA to dismiss anyone questioning its murder of President Kennedy. Death comes in many forms, and the fear of it has always been used by the powerful to render the common people speechless and obedient.

How can any thinking person, anyone not totally crippled by fear, not question what is going on with the coronavirus disaster when reading what Peter Koenig, a thirty-year veteran economist of the World Bank and World Health Organization, writes in his article The Farce and Diabolical Agenda of a 'Universal Lockdown' :

The pandemic was needed as a pretext to halt and collapse the world economy and the underlying social fabric.

There is no coincidence. There were a number of preparatory events, all pointing into the direction of a worldwide monumental historic disaster. It started at least 10 years ago – probably considerably earlier – with the infamous 2010 Rockefeller Report, which painted the first phase of a monstrous Plan, called the "Lock Step" scenario. Among the last preparatory moves for the "pandemic" was Event 201, held in NYC on 18 October 2019.

The event was sponsored by the Johns Hopkins Center for Public Health, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and the World Economic Forum (WEF), the club of the rich and powerful that meets every January in Davos, Switzerland. Participating were a number of pharmaceuticals (vaccine interest groups), as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s of the US and – of China.

One of the objectives of Event 201 was a computer simulation of a corona virus pandemic. The simulated virus was called SARS-2-nCoV, or later 2019-nCoV. The simulation results were disastrous, killing 65 million people in 18 months and plunging the stock market by more than 30% -- causing untold unemployment and bankruptcies. Precisely the scenario of which we are now living the beginning.

The Lock Step scenario foresees a number of ghastly and disturbing events or components of The Plan to be implemented by the so called Agenda ID2020, a Bill Gates creation, fully integrated into the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) – target date for completion – 2030 (also called Agenda 2030, the hidden agenda unknown to most of the UN members), the same target date for completion of the Agenda ID02020.

I ask the question but I am afraid I know the answer: miracle, mystery, and authority usually defeat evidence and simple logic. Fear of death and free thought scare children. The Grand Inquisitor lives on:

But man seeks to bow before that only which is recognized by the greater majority, if not by all his fellow-men, as having a right to be worshipped; whose rights are so unquestionable that men agree unanimously to bow down to it.

Death: A simple idea with such a powerful punch.


JoeC ,

It isn't just about the fear of death. It's also the fear of being responsible for the death of others. It's no accident that they've chosen a contagion as our imaginary enemy. We become the visible enemy if we refuse to wear face masks, abide social distance, wash our hands every 30 seconds or refuse a vaccine when it comes to it etc etc. Hence the laws that will follow. We will soon be public enemy number one. The new terrorists. I'm not scared of dying but I'm petrified of being persecuted for not believing this shit. What sort of life is that?

a belief. The author adds his on baggage to an otherwise lucid article, which rather diminishes the other truths he mentions ?

BigB ,

Excellent stuff, with plenty to think about as usual. As a proviso: Ed's sociology and ethnography needs tightening up though.

The big cultural repertoire of myths and symbols has a name; several names actually nomos, Weltanschauung, Weltansicht (cosmographic worldview or wide world sight), and *sensus communis* (the consensual common sense). Which is the consensus of views everyone shares.

The last is from Giambattista Vico: who also said: "Verum esse ipsum factum" ("What is true is precisely what is made [up]"). Which is the verum-factum principle of worldviews. The ideal eternal cosmological history is subjectively made up, culturally constructed, as a consensually maintained worldbuilding and world-maintaining mythological storytelling.

To which the individual is socialised not once – from birth through education – not twice – in the workforce – but continually as a process of cultural individuality making. Which is not all one way, top-down traffic of obedience and control – but a reflexive and causal circularity. The big bunch of historically specific myths and symbols make and maintain the person: just as the person makes and maintains the big bunch of historically specific myths as a consensually maintained worldbuilding and world-maintaining mythological storytelling. The individual self is itself a cultural constructivism.

It cannot be any other way: otherwise there can be no common ground for communication and there is only communication. Or participatory sense-making: no one can have their own language or behavioural repertoire maintained far from the socially regulated consensus and continue to make sense. Maintaining the dictionary definition of words (intension) and the encyclopaedic repertoire of social norms and modes of behaviour is critical to the meaning of the overall order. And there is only the order. Very uneasy order.

The individual finds themselves historically situated in the ordinate nexus of thinking, speaking, and acting in a constrained, shared, and lawfully regulated landscape of language, culture, society, state and market economy. There is no 'outside': except for the retreat into solipsism and ahistoric flights of imagination. We make our own history: but not autonomously and not in circumstances of our own choosing.

Cultural construction and reproduction – and the worldview maintainence of socially constructed reality – is a permanent process. Following the basic processes of social constructivism – as laid out by Berger and Luckman. Which are: habitualisation by subjectivated externalisation and reification by objectivated internalisation as a recurrent, resonant, and reflexive lifelong process.

We are part of the tissue and fabric of socially constructed reality. And socially constructed reality is part of the tissue and fabric of us: the flesh of the cultural worldview.

http://perflensburg.se/Berger%20social-construction-of-reality.pdf

Of course: the biggest lie of the principle of cultural constructivist storytelling is that what is told is naturally objective, true, and real. And some of it is lawfully authoritative (like this old computer epidemiology model I had lying around). Which is what gives the story its universal regulative ordinate control and constative overpower.

I mean, who would want to self-admit they were regurgitating institutionalised and habitualised false beliefs and mistaken abstractive assumptions about the objective nature of things that were just a bunch of made up and recycled socialisation and pacification rites of a cultural constructivist performance?

Truth, self, and social reality itself is constructed by such rites.

And what if the nomos – the ordered and naturalised ordinate principle – which is a cultures own talisman against chaos, indiscipline, and made up shite about virology turns out to be chaotic, restrictive, petrifying and rapidly fossilising as a permanent order of fascising bollox and corporatist control?

If the fossilising order is worse than the disorder it symbolically wards off and guards against: and the culturally created fear of death worse than the natural process of dying then what?

Is it better that the institutionalised and institutionalising lawful ordering is in principle false and an unjust draconian social realism? Or that it is objective, rational, and scientifically real? And eternally and universally valid?

What if a society had been rationalised and institutionalised into a universal analytical reasoning, an empiric objectivity, a historically contingent subjectivity, and a nomological scientific principle that were in fact falsely constructed? And just habitually and consensually maintained as a lawful, juridical, and regulatory idealism of an eternally natural cosmological order? Which just happened to turn out to be totalitarian fascistic co-participatory dumbfuckerry?

That culture would find itself in a headfuck situation of a nomological breakdown of its worldview and its interwoven individual identities most of which would want to shelter in the pretence of being ahistorically situated outside of language, culture, and thought in a nomological no mans land. Which is exactly the abnegation of cultural creativity that precipitated the meaning crisis and breakdown of order.

I'm so glad I do not live in such a culture. That would indeed be terrifying.

😱 😱 😱 😱 😱

aspnaz ,

An interesting article that reminds me of the difference between westerners and the mainland Chinese whom I believe are the model that will used to create the future world.

I am not talking about communism, the Chinese gave up communism ages ago, they are now the world's premier imperialists, using capitalism to drive their influence across the globe. But their control over people is surely the model aspired to by any person wanting to rule the world.

The use of technology to control behaviour by denying holidays to people, denying promotions etc all based on credit scores and similar monitoring has to be seen by the wealthy as a model of what can be achieved by the combination of ruthless force and control over information.

The response of the Chinese to the virus – the lockdown – was seen in the west as China caring for its people, but here in HK it is still commonly seen as China panicking because it thought that the people would be afraid and would turn on the government for not protecting them. It was riot control, not virus control, hence the arrest of people spreading virus rumours.

tonyopmoc ,

Edward Curtin, what you wrote is completely brilliant, in the few minutes it took me to read it, you took me through the vastness of time, and my entire physical and spiritual existence. thank you. tony

Hugh O'Neill ,

Another thought-provoking article, Ed. I was reminded of four quotes:

1. G.K. Chesterton: "When a man ceases to believe in God, he doesn't believe in nothing; he believes in anything"
2. On the dropping of the first atomic bomb, Oppenheimer quoted from Hindu scripture: "Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds"
3. JFK's favourite poem was Alan Seeger's "I have a rendezvous with death". Seeger died in 1916
4. Whatever the merits of the poem, JFK was no stranger to death. Likewise, he had adopted Lincoln's prayer: "I know there is a God – and I see a storm coming. If he has a place for me, I believe that I am ready."

RobG ,

Edward, how people can be so easily fooled is an age old question. One hundred years ago they queued up to be slaughtered in the trenches. It was all so senseless it was beyond belief.

"Over the top lads, for King and Country" (the Black Adder comedy programme really captured this).

I'm not sure what else I can say about the stupidity of the human race.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vH3-Gt7mgyM

We are at this point again, and people need to fecking wake-up.

Richard Le Sarc ,

People in the West are brainwashed from birth. They have NO idea that the capitalist system is incompatible with Life on Earth, that it is a form of cancer, that the USA is the greatest force for Evil in history and that businessmen, politicians, MSM presstitutes are psychopaths at best, dullards and ignoramuses at best. And the worst are those that deny death in belief in various 'Gods' who all hate each other and compel them to kill and destroy in his name. The system is collapsing, and that is finally dawning on the brain-dead 'consumers', who will now proceed to consume one another.

Calamity Jane ,

All are brainwashed from birth. Its not "capitalism" its is a parasitic banking cabals economy .
Its a monopoly you've just always believed as a debt slave its capitalism and you're free.
They are resetting it, those that understand the minds of the manchild.

charming ,

best book on life i've read https://www.amazon.co.uk/Denial-Death-Ernest-Becker/dp/0285638971

Dungroanin ,

Good stuff Edward,
Most of the 'plan' has been on these boards for months- the one missing is Whitney Webbs latest which exposes the dumb fucks plan to close the 'AI Gap with China'.

'THEY' have never let a good crises go to waste to further their agenda and plans.

Another old adage is about not being able to fool all of the people all of the time.

Death and politicians and media narrative control can also lose their grip. It starts by laughing at them. It's started:

https://twitter.com/altmann_tim/status/1256690738294857731?s=20

THEY will not succeed this time – the narrative is a shattering mirror, that reveals their plans – the BS isn't sticking any more.

crank ,

Confronting our exaggerated fear of dying is the only way out of this prison. Thanks for this article Edward.

John Deehan ,

When the education system has been designed to eliminate the use of critical thinking and the purveyors of propaganda control the vast majority of the MSM, academia plus the creation of a veneer of democracy, it is little wonder so many people have swallowed this lie.

Doug Stillborn ,

The cabal beleives that the truth is irrelevant and that whatever appears to you as truth is what is true to you and the only truth. This is false. The truth is not relative. Einstein knew this and said, time is an illusion albeit a persistent one. If you propagate the idea of atheism and science what you are actually doing is you are relinquishing any responsibility/accountability.

Calamity Jane ,

I don't think so Doug . The ideas of " atheism and science " are out there.
But what has happened is that many who call themselves atheists worship science( but not science as knowledge as it originally meant) so its mostly theories taken a facts, pseudoscience. Agree though that time is an illusion.

The cabal wants only their narrative( lies as the truth) they want the truth of who we are and that we are co creators in this world unknown to us .

[Apr 24, 2020] Orwellian fiction is steeped deeply in the actual ways that WASP Empire operates to grind its own citizens and ue them as mindless pawns to make Anglo-Zionist Elites ever richer, ever more entrenched in power.

Apr 24, 2020 | www.unz.com

Jake , says: Show Comment April 23, 2020 at 12:52 pm GMT

Let's place a couple of things together:

1. "The US political culture is that 99.99% of Americans will believe literally ANY lie, no matter how self-evidently stupid, about the rest of the world rather than accepting any unpleasant truth about the US. "

2. "Eventually, and inevitably, this strategic PSYOP upped the ante and FOXnews (logically) aired this true masterpiece: "Sen. Hawley: Let coronavirus victims sue Chinese Communist Party". Truly, this is brilliant. "I lost my job, let the evil Chinese commies pay me back" is music to the ears of most Americans."

This is what Anglo-Zionist religious/political culture produces. And it is not restricted to jingoistic blaming of the peoples of other nations; it also features blaming those who are citizens of the nation but are more outsiders to the WASP Elites that the group doing the blaming. That pattern keeps the non-Elites from ever seeing that their enemy is the national/imperial Elite they serve.

For example, the horrors the Brit WASP Elites and their system inflicted on Lancashire factory workers would have made any real life Simon Legree giddy at the possibilities. And those abused masses could be counted on at every turn to retard their own demands any time the Elites could turn the conversation to how the Irish or Highlanders would come in and take their jobs for even less and ruin their delightful communities. Or how the evil empires on the Continent were causing trouble and to save lives of British soldiers the factory workers must be reasonable.

Orwellian fiction is steeped deeply in the actual ways that WASP Empire operates to grind its own citizens and ue them as mindless pawns to make Anglo-Zionist Elites ever richer, ever more entrenched in power.

[Apr 19, 2020] It was the first time that I had seen a person whose profession was telling lies -- unless one counts journalists

Apr 19, 2020 | twitter.com


Alex Berenson ‏ 4:33 PM - 18 Apr 2020

1984 and Animal Farm get the attention, but Homage to Catalonia - Orwell's non-fiction on the Spanish Civil War - might be his best. Wow, did he hate reporters: "It was the first time that I had seen a person whose profession was telling lies -- unless one counts journalists..."

Alex Berenson ‏ 4:34 PM - 18 Apr 2020

2/ And this: "I do not suppose I should exaggerate if I said that nine-tenths of it is untruthful. Nearly all the newspaper accounts published at the time were manufactured by journalists at a distance, and were not only inaccurate in their facts but intentionally misleading..."

Alex Berenson ‏ 4:37 PM - 18 Apr 2020

3/ I guess one might say that the groupthink and lies Orwell saw in Spain *informed* his writing in 1984 - which was published in 1949, 11 years after Homage to Catalonia. Apropos of nothing, of course.

Cú Chulainn ‏ 4:36 PM - 18 Apr 2020

sounds like media coverage of NATO war on Syria, or the Yugoslav war as depicted here: https://www. imdb.com/title/tt028350 9/

Moron Rehab ‏ 4:38 PM - 18 Apr 2020

Wow! Not much has changed.

ScottyG ‏ 4:39 PM - 18 Apr 2020

Well, then, at least they've been consistent over the years 🤷‍♂️

Rob ‏ 4:42 PM - 18 Apr 2020

"inaccurate in their facts but intentionally misleading" inaccurate in facts: misinformation intentionally misleading: disinformation

Todd the Californian Conservative ‏ 4:47 PM - 18 Apr 2020

Okay, I'll be adding this book to my list of books to read after I graduate and take my big exam.

B Ekdahl ‏ 5:06 PM - 18 Apr 2020

❤️ ❤️ ❤️The part of that book that I've thought of with hope during this chillling time is how Orwell noted that the Spanish were incompetent even with fascism. Let's hope that US is even more incompetent.

R.R. Reno ‏ 5:30 PM - 18 Apr 2020

I don't think we can underestimate how many reporters have been so panicked that only a few are outside their homes in New York reporting on what's actually happening.

Will ‏ 6:21 PM - 18 Apr 2020

https:// twitter.com/GKCdaily/statu s/1224368540049821697

Alex Berenson ‏ 4:33 PM - 18 Apr 2020

1984 and Animal Farm get the attention, but Homage to Catalonia - Orwell's non-fiction on the Spanish Civil War - might be his best. Wow, did he hate reporters: "It was the first time that I had seen a person whose profession was telling lies--unless one counts journalists..."

Will ‏ 6:27 PM - 18 Apr 2020

If you haven't heard of Udo Ulfkotte's story, you should check it out: https://www. paulcraigroberts.org/2019/10/14/jou rnalists-are-prostitutes/ His initiation into big time media was watching fellow reporters pour gasoline on burnt up tanks & film it, replete w/ soldier actors, like war was happening. Audio tracks added later.

[Apr 01, 2020] This is the problem with the Democrats: people are more interested in class issues, and economic equality then identity politics by Rod Dreher

Notable quotes:
"... This is the problem with the Democrats. You might be interested in class issues, and economic equality, and not at all interested in wokeness. But what you're going to get is wokeness, because that is what the power-holding class in the Democratic Party really cares about. As James Lindsay, the left-liberal professor who does heroic work fighting wokeness, told me in our recent interview: ..."
"... Of course [Social Justice Warriors] going to find ways to use this crisis to their advantage. They go around inventing problems or dramatically exaggerating or misinterpreting small problems to push their agenda; why wouldn't they do the same in a situation where there's so much chaos and thus so much going wrong. My experience so far is that people are really underestimating how much of this there will be and how much of it will be institutionalized while we're busy doing other things like tending to the sick and dying and trying not to lose our livelihoods and/or join them ourselves. ..."
"... It's very important to understand that "Critical Social Justice" isn't just activism and some academic theories about things. It's a way of thinking about the world, and that way is rooted in critical theory as it has been applied mostly to identity groups and identity politics ..."
Mar 31, 2020 | The American Conservative
George Scialabba has a wonderful essay about Orwell in Commonweal . Though Scialabba writes in it about Orwell's criticism of the right, this passage jumped out:

Might Orwell's sensitive nose have detected a whiff of cant anywhere on the contemporary left? I suspect he would have cast a baleful eye on identity politics. He would, I think, be dubious about "diversity." Why do every college and corporation in America have a fleet of "diversity" officers? What is gained by ensuring -- at enormous expense -- that every student or employee is proud of his/her culture and that every other student or employee respects it? According to Walter Benn Michaels in The Trouble with Diversity, what is gained is the avoidance of class conflict. "The commitment to diversity is at best a distraction and at worst an essentially reactionary position . We would much rather celebrate cultural diversity than seek to establish economic equality."

Orwell was moderately obsessed with class. He would probably have noted that the explosive growth of inequality in the United States over the past four decades has closely paralleled the explosive growth of the diversity industry, and would have drawn some conclusions. He might have asked: If there were two societies with the same Gini coefficient, but in one of them, the proportion of billionaires by race and gender matched that of the general population, would that society be morally better than the other? Or: If the ratio of CEO to median employee earnings was the same in two societies, but in one of them the proportion of CEOs by race and gender matched that of the general population, would that society be morally better than the other? I'm pretty sure that most diversity bureaucrats would answer "yes" to both questions, and that Orwell would have answered "no."

Orwell was fearless, so a tribute to him shouldn't pull any punches. I think he would suggest that there was something irrational about the way we enforce our most sensitive taboo: the N-word. From the wholesale banning of Huckleberry Finn to the many times teachers and civil servants have been censured, and in one case fired, for using the word "niggardly" (which has no etymological relation to the N-word) to the resignation under pressure recently of a Cambridge, Massachusetts, school committeewoman for using the N-word in a discussion of a proposed high-school course about the N-word, we have often made fools of ourselves and done disadvantaged African Americans no good. As the school superintendent summarized the Cambridge case: the committeewoman "made a point about racist language and used the full N-word instead of the common substitute, 'N-word.' Although said in the context of a classroom discussion, and not directed to any student or adult present, the full pronunciation of the word was upsetting to a number of students and adults who were present or who have since heard about the incident." No one, however, as far as I am aware, has publicly expressed hurt feelings over the fact that the average net worth of African Americans in the Boston area is $8. (Eight, no zeros.) As Benn Michaels observes: "As long as the left continues to worry about [respect], the right won't have to worry about inequality."

Read it all.

I wrote earlier today about actually existing conservatism being more of a "folk libertarianism" than anything resembling philosophical conservatism. But what about actually existing liberalism?

The surprising triumph of Joe Biden, the most normie Democrat in America, tells us something about actually existing liberalism. Illiberal progressivism dominates in academia, the media, and in corporate America's human resources departments. A reader sends in this abstract from a paper published by a Penn professor at the Ivy League university's Wharton School of Business (Trump's alma mater!) in which she argues that the state should

forbid identity-based discrimination but permit refusals of service for projects that foster hate toward protected groups, even where the hate-based project is intimately linked to a protected characteristic (as with religious groups that mandate white supremacy). Far from perpetuating discrimination, these refusals instead promote anti-discrimination norms, and they help realize the vision of the morally inflected marketplace that the Article defends.

You could say that Biden's (not yet assured) victory in the Democratic primaries shows that actually existing liberalism is much less interested in wokeness than in bread-and-butter issues. After all, the more self-consciously woke candidates in the Democratic race didn't get anywhere. I would like to read it that way. But would Biden actually stand up to any wokeness? After all, this is the man who tweeted:

Let's be clear: Transgender equality is the civil rights issue of our time. There is no room for compromise when it comes to basic human rights.

-- Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) January 25, 2020

This is the problem with the Democrats. You might be interested in class issues, and economic equality, and not at all interested in wokeness. But what you're going to get is wokeness, because that is what the power-holding class in the Democratic Party really cares about. As James Lindsay, the left-liberal professor who does heroic work fighting wokeness, told me in our recent interview:

Of course [Social Justice Warriors] going to find ways to use this crisis to their advantage. They go around inventing problems or dramatically exaggerating or misinterpreting small problems to push their agenda; why wouldn't they do the same in a situation where there's so much chaos and thus so much going wrong. My experience so far is that people are really underestimating how much of this there will be and how much of it will be institutionalized while we're busy doing other things like tending to the sick and dying and trying not to lose our livelihoods and/or join them ourselves.

It's very important to understand that "Critical Social Justice" isn't just activism and some academic theories about things. It's a way of thinking about the world, and that way is rooted in critical theory as it has been applied mostly to identity groups and identity politics. Thus, not only do they think about almost nothing except ways that "systemic power" and "dominant groups" are creating all the problems around us, they've more or less forgotten how to think about problems in any other way. The underlying assumption of their Theory–and that's intentionally capitalized because it means a very specific thing–is that the very fabric of society is built out of unjust systemic power dynamics, and it is their job (as "critical theorists") to find those, "make them visible," and then to move on to doing it with the next thing, ideally while teaching other people to do it too. This crisis will be full of opportunities to do that, and they will do it relentlessly. So, it's not so much a matter of them "finding a way" to use this crisis to their advantage as it is that they don't really do anything else.

To be honest, I don't have a lot of confidence in predictions about what valence wokeness (or right-wing culture war themes) will have in this fall's election, given the economic destruction upon us now. I do have confidence, though, that if the left gets into power, this professional class of woke activists will march triumphantly through the institutions of government, and implement their identity-politics utopianism. Do I think that most Democratic voters do, or would, favor that? No, probably not. I imagine they would be voting Democratic primarily to oust Trump, and secondarily because they are more interested in income inequality...

If Orwell were alive today and writing with his superlative critical pen about them, he would struggle to find publication in one of our major liberal journals.

UPDATE: Just now:

I'm sure Critical Social Justice isn't quietly reorganizing things that might matter because of the pandemic Or so I keep being told. https://t.co/LEzvjqbu2B

-- James Lindsay, staying home (@ConceptualJames) March 31, 2020

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative . He has written and edited for the New York Post , The Dallas Morning News , National Review , the South Florida Sun-Sentinel , the Washington Times , and the Baton Rouge Advocate . Rod's commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal , Commentary , the Weekly Standard , Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming , Crunchy Cons , How Dante Can Save Your Life , and The Benedict Option

[Mar 24, 2020] Coronovirus and Yevgeny Zamyatin dystopian novel We

See We (novel) - Wikipedia
Mar 24, 2020 | off-guardian.org

We is set in the future. D-503, a spacecraft engineer, lives in the One State,[3] an urban nation constructed almost entirely of glass, which assists mass surveillance. The structure of the state is Panopticon-like, and life is scientifically managed F. W. Taylor-style. People march in step with each other and are uniformed. There is no way of referring to people except by their given numbers. The society is run strictly by logic or reason as the primary justification for the laws or the construct of the society.[4][5] The individual's behaviour is based on logic by way of formulas and equations outlined by the One State.[6]

Francis Lee ,

Sounds very much like Yevgeny Zamyatin – We . But we never thought it would happen!

[Mar 23, 2020] Dystopian books and coronavirus

Mar 23, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jay , Mar 23 2020 18:34 utc | 14

In the case of "Brave New World", the establishment knows how to cure pretty much any conventional disease. Then if you're in approved society you die around age 60 because of everything that's kept you alive and looking like 40.

I just read the book last month for the first time in 30+ years. It does belong on that diagram. And "1984" doesn't either, since it really doesn't deal with anything like infectious diseases--reread that about 2 years ago.


I've not read the other 2 outer books ever, but the movie of "Fahrenheit 451", which I just watched and Bradbury certainly had a hand in writing, has nothing to do with infectious disease.

There might be something in Camus' "The Plague" though. Haven't read that since the 1980s.

There aren't food shortages so not sure about the "Soylent Green" reference, yet at least. "Long's Run" is about killing people off at age 35, which I guess overlaps with "kill 80% of the poor workers", something the likes of Charles Koch certainly supports. So indirectly there could be a "Logan's Run" connection.

Gattica is just about favored people with the right genes, so an update of "Brave New World", without the highly literate "savage" as the main character.

I don't see how "The Matrix" relates, that's more about the material world's completeness being an illusion.

"Clockwork Orange?" A thug suppressed with mind control?

Haven't read "Lord of the Flies", but don't the kids worship a god of the island, and justify the horrors they commit based on that conception of god or a god?

[Feb 22, 2020] I understand "social media" literally in the Orwellian sense, it is "social" media just like war is peace. The true meaning is "asocial media" which prevents real interaction, and is under complete control by big brother: you can become a non-person at any moment.

Feb 22, 2020 | www.moonofalabama.org

Norwegian , Feb 22 2020 19:12 utc | 66

Posted by: Bemildred | Feb 22 2020 13:41 utc | 20
The "social" is "social media" is in contrast to "professional" or "business" or "commercial" media, i.e. the MSM and other commercial media.

I understand "social media" literally in the Orwellian sense, it is "social" media just like war is peace. The true meaning is "asocial media" which prevents real interaction, and under complete control by big brother, you can become a non-person at any moment.

[Jan 02, 2020] The Ministry of Minority-Worship Gay Rights and Goals of Globohomo by Tobias Langdon

Aug 30, 2019 | www.unz.com

Totalitarian ideologies live by lies and contradiction. For example, the slave-state of North Korea , ruled by a hereditary dictatorship, proclaims itself a Democratic People's Republic when it is neither democratic, popular, nor a republic.

In Nineteen Eighty-Four , Orwell wrote of how "the names of the four Ministries by which [the oppressed population is] governed exhibit a sort of impudence in their deliberate reversal of the facts. The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation.

These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from ordinary hypocrisy; they are deliberate exercises in doublethink ."

Defending the death-machine

You could, then, call GCHQ and the NSA part of the Ministry of Morality. While breaking laws against surveillance and trying to destroy freedom of expression and enquiry, they pretend that they're caring, ethical organizations who defend the oppressed and want to build a better world. In fact, of course, GCHQ and the NSA are defending the death-machine of the military-industrial complex , which has been wrecking nations and slaughtering civilians in the Middle East (and elsewhere ) for decades.

They're also defending the traitorous Western governments that first import millions of Third-Worlders , then use the resultant crime, terrorism and racial conflict to justify mass surveillance and harsh laws against free speech .


OzzyBonHalen , says: August 29, 2019 at 6:54 am GMT

Quote: Orwell didn't foresee the celebration of homosexuality by totalitarians, but he did explain it.

If you read Anthony Burgess' The Wanting Seed he writes about the roles of gays in dystopia. He also talks about race, two things that Orwell and Huxley didn't. The Wanting Seed is just as important in the world of dystopia as Brave New World or 1984.

Reg Cæsar , says: August 29, 2019 at 7:49 am GMT

one way George Orwell got the future completely wrong

That assumes he was writing about the future. He was mocking the Soviet "justice" system in the recent past. The man was a satirist, after all. How did Stalin's men treat sexual deviation?

... ... ...

Walter , says: August 29, 2019 at 9:40 am GMT
NSA needs to revisit their grammar studies. They may benefit from attention to the correct use of commas.

"At NSA, talented individuals of all backgrounds, contribute to something bigger than themselves: national security. #PrideMonth."

The globo-sodomy is one thing, but the torture of grammar! Ye gods!

MarkU , says: August 29, 2019 at 2:03 pm GMT
A few points.

1) The iniquities of the members of one skyfairy cult are not evidence for the virtues of another such organisation and never will be.

2) It seems likely to me that homosexuality is a feature of overpopulation and may be a natural population control mechanism. Experiments have shown that rats kept in overcrowded conditions exhibit homosexual tendencies and also become more violent towards other rats. I doubt that it is purely a coincidence that homosexuality first became notable round about the time that humans started living in cities.

Other species have means of controlling their populations, rabbits for example can reabsorb their embryos if the population count is too high, seals can freeze the development of their foetuses etc.

I see no rational purpose in demonising homosexuals and I am certainly not going to let the purveyors of ancient superstitious claptrap do my thinking for me. Cue howls of outrage from both skyfairy cultists and from queers (if they are happy to use the word I don't see why I shouldn't)

3) It seems to me that the Zionist bankers have essentially bankrupted the western world in an attempt to bring the rest of the world under their control, they have failed. They are now attempting to mobilise any and all sections of the population that identify as minorities as allies against the majorities in those countries, importing as many more as they can get away with. What sense does it make to reinforce their narrative that it is heterosexual whites v everyone else? because that is exactly what some people are doing. The Zionists are making their following as broad as possible while attempting to narrow ours, why play into their hands? Opposition to immigration for example does not have to be presented as a racial issue, many people here in the UK were opposed to mass immigration from eastern Europe on purely economic grounds, Poles and Lithuanians are not a different race and hardly even a different culture. Do you really think that Blacks and Latinos that have been in the US for generations are uniformly delighted about a new influx of cheap labour? Do you really believe that Muslims are the natural allies of Jews or of homosexuals? If you actually put some thought into the struggle rather than relying on superstitious claptrap and bigotry you might be able to start pushing back.

Liza , says: August 29, 2019 at 3:50 pm GMT
@Bardon Kaldian

So, Western civilization is going to collapse because of a few fairies & fag hags?

Yes, it looks as if it will collapse. Not because the fairies and fag hags are all-powerful, but because we have had it so good & easy for so long that we've gotten weaker than any determined, focused fairy or hag.

Astonished , says: August 29, 2019 at 4:00 pm GMT
@MarkU I agree.

Leftism in general, which I characterize as a mass adoption of a "mental map" (the gross oversimplification of infinite reality people use to navigate their lives) highly estranged from underlying reality, is Nature's "suicide switch" for an organism that has grossly overgrown its ecological niche.

Today people believe palpably unreal things, in incredibly large numbers, with incredibly deep fervor. The poster-child is the belief in the efficacy of magical incantations (statute legislation) to change Actual Reality. If "we" want to end racism (however we define it in the Newspeak Dictionary) then we just pass a law and "pow!" it's gone. (When that doesn't work, we pass another law, and another and another and another, always expecting a different result.)

Ditto the banking (and monetary) system. Money used to be basically a "receipt" for actually having something IN HAND to take to the market and engage in trade. This was the essence of Say's Law, "in order to consume (buy something) you must first produce."

Some clever Machiavellians figured out that if you could "complexify" and obscure the monetary system enough, you could obtain the legal right to create from thin air the ability to enter that market and buy something, which stripped to its essence is the crime of fraud.

Banking has been an open fraud for a very long time, certainly since the era of naked fiat money was introduced in the 1960's. But as long as everyone went along with the gag, and especially once Credit Bubble Funny Money started fueling a debt orgy and rationalizing an asset price mania, everyone thought "we could all get rich."

Today we have vast claims on real wealth (real wealth is productive land, productive plant & equipment and capital you can hold in your hands, so to speak.) But we have uncountable claims on each unit of real capital. The Machiavellians think that they will end up holding title to it all, when the day comes to actually make an honest accounting. I suspect that they lack the political power to pull that off, but only time will tell.

When this long, insane boom is reconciled, a lot of productive capital will turn out to be nothing but vaporware and rusting steel. Entire industries arose to cater to credit-bubble-demand, and when the bubble eventually ceases to inflate, demand in (and the capital applied to) those industries will collapse. How many hospitals do you need when no one has the money to pay for their services, and the tax base has burned to the ground?

Nature's suicide switch.

gwynedd1 , says: August 29, 2019 at 5:36 pm GMT
Simple formula. Liberalism was the defense of the individual against the group.

All one needs to do is a simple substitution. Minorities , environment , animals etc are a means by witch one can make individuals into the institutionalized oppressor. Even better is the so called intersectional mini oppressions which make nearly all victims which in turns makes all guilty. State intervention must increase .Guilty people , as all religions of the world understand, are easily dominated and controlled.

The power the individual is destroyed by its own momentum.

Ris_Eruwaedhiel , says: August 29, 2019 at 10:25 pm GMT
@Digital Samizdat The Bolsheviks first pushed "free love" – easy divorce, abortion and homosexuality. There even was serious discussion about whether or not to abolish marriage. They reversed themselves and by the time WWII broke out, the official culture of the Soviet Union was more socially conservative than that of the US. Even in the 1980s, the Commies were tough on gays, lesbians and druggies.

[Dec 10, 2019] The revealed face of the the USA ruling class during Trump impeachment is Neo-Orwellian.

Dec 10, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

clarky90 , , December 9, 2019 at 7:06 pm

The MSM is reporting the "impeachment" as if it was a serious (approved by expert academics) endeavor. However, the veil is lifting. The revealed face of the ruling class is Neo-Orwellian.

"Nadler's committee will likely vote to impeach Trump. In a report defining what it considers impeachable offenses, the committee states that even if Trump did not actually break any laws in his supposed "quid pro quo" dealings with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, he can still be impeached for his unstated motives.

"The question is not whether the president's conduct could have resulted from permissible motives. It is whether the president's real reasons, the ones in his mind at the time, were legitimate, " it stated."

https://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13980918000328

Certainly they are working on mind wave tech, to scan us for "unstated motives" as we live our day to day lives?

[Nov 21, 2019] The Origins Of Thought Police... And Why They Should Scare Us

Notable quotes:
"... Finally, the Thought Police were also inspired by the human struggle for self-honesty and the pressure to conform. "The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe," Rudyard Kipling once observed. ..."
"... The struggle to remain true to one's self was also felt by Orwell, who wrote about "the smelly little orthodoxies" that contend for the human soul. Orwell prided himself with a "power of facing unpleasant facts" -- something of a rarity in humans -- even though it often hurt him in British society. ..."
"... In a sense, 1984 is largely a book about the human capacity to maintain a grip on the truth in the face of propaganda and power. ..."
"... The new Thought Police may be less sinister than the ThinkPol in 1984 , but the next generation will have to decide if seeking conformity of thought or language through public shaming is healthy or suffocating. FEE's Dan Sanchez recently observed that many people today feel like they're "walking on eggshells" and live in fear of making a verbal mistake that could draw condemnation. ..."
"... When the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, it was revealed that the Stasi , East Germany's secret police, had a full-time staff of 91,000. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but what's frightening is that the organization had almost double that in informants, including children. And it wasn't just children reporting on parents; sometimes it was the other way around." ..."
"... Movies like the Matrix actually helped people to question everything. What is real and not. Who is the enemy, and can we be sure. And when Conspiracy theories become fact, people learn. The problem is in later generations who get indoctrinated at school and college to not think, not question. Rational examination is forbidden. ..."
Nov 21, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

The Origins Of Thought Police... And Why They Should Scare Us by Tyler Durden Thu, 11/21/2019 - 20:25 0 SHARES

Authored by Jon Miltimore via The Foundation for Economic Education,

There are a lot of unpleasant things in George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984 . Spying screens. Torture and propaganda. Victory Gin and Victory Coffee always sounded particularly dreadful. And there is Winston Smith's varicose ulcer, apparently a symbol of his humanity (or something), which always seems to be "throbbing." Gross.

None of this sounds very enjoyable, but it's not the worst thing in 1984 . To me, the most terrifying part was that you couldn't keep Big Brother out of your head.

Unlike other 20th-century totalitarians, the authoritarians in 1984 aren't that interested in controlling behavior or speech. They do, of course, but it's only as a means to an end. Their real goal is to control the gray matter between the ears.

"When finally you surrender to us, it must be of your own free will," O'Brien (the bad guy) tells the protagonist Winston Smith near the end of the book.

We do not destroy the heretic because he resists us: so long as he resists us we never destroy him. We convert him, we capture his inner mind, we reshape him.

Big Brother's tool for doing this is the Thought Police, aka the ThinkPol, who are assigned to root out and punish unapproved thoughts. We see how this works when Winston's neighbor Parsons, an obnoxious Party sycophant, is reported to the Thought Police by his own child, who heard him commit a thought crime while talking in his sleep.

"It was my little daughter," Parsons tells Winston when asked who it was who denounced him.

"She listened at the keyhole. Heard what I was saying, and nipped off to the patrols the very next day. Pretty smart for a nipper of seven, eh?"

Who Are These Thought Police?

We don't know a lot about the Thought Police, and some of what we think we know may actually not be true since some of what Winston learns comes from the Inner Party, and they lie.

What we know is this: The Thought Police are secret police of Oceania -- the fictional land of 1984 that probably consists of the UK, the Americas, and parts of Africa -- who use surveillance and informants to monitor the thoughts of citizens. The Thought Police also use psychological warfare and false-flag operations to entrap free thinkers or nonconformists.

Those who stray from Party orthodoxy are punished but not killed. The Thought Police don't want to kill nonconformists so much as break them. This happens in Room 101 of the Ministry of Love, where prisoners are re-educated through degradation and torture. (Funny sidebar: the name Room 101 apparently was inspired by a conference room at the BBC in which Orwell was forced to endure tediously long meetings.)

The Origins of the Thought Police

Orwell didn't create the Thought Police out of thin air. They were inspired to at least some degree by his experiences in the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939), a complicated and confusing affair. What you really need to know is that there were no good guys, and it ended with left-leaning anarchists and Republicans in Spain crushed by their Communist overlords, which helped the fascists win.

Orwell, an idealistic 33-year-old socialist when the conflict started, supported the anarchists and loyalists fighting for the left-leaning Second Spanish Republic, which received most of its support from the Soviet Union and Josef Stalin. (That might sound bad, but keep in mind that the Nazis were on the other side.) Orwell described the atmosphere in Barcelona in December 1936 when everything seemed to be going well for his side.

The anarchists were still in virtual control of Catalonia and the revolution was still in full swing ... It was the first time that I had ever been in a town where the working class was in the saddle,

he wrote in Homage to Catalonia.

[E]very wall was scrawled with the hammer and sickle ... every shop and café had an inscription saying that it had been collectivized.

That all changed pretty fast. Stalin, a rather paranoid fellow, was bent on making Republican Spain loyal to him . Factions and leaders perceived as loyal to his exiled Communist rival, Leon Trotsky , were liquidated. Loyal Communists found themselves denounced as fascists. Nonconformists and "uncontrollables" were disappeared.

Orwell never forgot the purges or the steady stream of lies and propaganda churned out from Communist papers during the conflict. (To be fair, their Nationalist opponents also used propaganda and lies .) Stalin's NKVD was not exactly like the Thought Police -- the NKVD showed less patience with its victims -- but they certainly helped inspire Orwell's secret police.

The Thought Police were not all propaganda and torture, though. They also stem from Orwell's ideas on truth. During his time in Spain, he saw how power could corrupt truth, and he shared these reflections in his work George Orwell: My Country Right or Left, 1940-1943 .

...I saw newspaper reports which did not bear any relation to the facts, not even the relationship which is implied in an ordinary lie. I saw great battles reported where there had been no fighting, and complete silence where hundreds of men had been killed. I saw troops who had fought bravely denounced as cowards and traitors, and others who had never seen a shot fired hailed as the heroes of imaginary victories; and I saw newspapers in London retailing these lies and eager intellectuals building emotional superstructures over events that had never happened.

In short, Orwell's brush with totalitarianism left him worried that "the very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world."

This scared him. A lot. He actually wrote, "This kind of thing is frightening to me."

Finally, the Thought Police were also inspired by the human struggle for self-honesty and the pressure to conform. "The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe," Rudyard Kipling once observed.

The struggle to remain true to one's self was also felt by Orwell, who wrote about "the smelly little orthodoxies" that contend for the human soul. Orwell prided himself with a "power of facing unpleasant facts" -- something of a rarity in humans -- even though it often hurt him in British society.

In a sense, 1984 is largely a book about the human capacity to maintain a grip on the truth in the face of propaganda and power.

It might be tempting to dismiss Orwell's book as a figment of dystopian literature. Unfortunately, that's not as easy as it sounds. Modern history shows he was onto something.

When the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, it was revealed that the Stasi, East Germany's secret police, had a full-time staff of 91,000.

When the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, it was revealed that the Stasi , East Germany's secret police, had a full-time staff of 91,000. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but what's frightening is that the organization had almost double that in informants, including children. And it wasn't just children reporting on parents; sometimes it was the other way around.

Nor did the use of state spies to prosecute thoughtcrimes end with the fall of the Soviet Union. Believe it or not, it's still happening today. The New York Times recently ran a report featuring one Peng Wei, a 21-year-old Chinese chemistry major. He is one of the thousands of "student information officers" China uses to root out professors who show signs of disloyalty to President Xi Jinping or the Communist Party.

The New Thought Police?

The First Amendment of the US Constitution, fortunately, largely protects Americans from the creepy authoritarian systems found in 1984 , East Germany, and China; but the rise of "cancel culture" shows the pressure to conform to all sorts of orthodoxies (smelly or not) remains strong.

The new Thought Police may be less sinister than the ThinkPol in 1984 , but the next generation will have to decide if seeking conformity of thought or language through public shaming is healthy or suffocating. FEE's Dan Sanchez recently observed that many people today feel like they're "walking on eggshells" and live in fear of making a verbal mistake that could draw condemnation.

That's a lot of pressure, especially for people still learning the acceptable boundaries of a new moral code that is constantly evolving. Most people, if the pressure is sufficient, will eventually say "2+2=5" just to escape punishment. That's exactly what Winston Smith does at the end of 1984 , after all. Yet Orwell also leaves readers with a glimmer of hope.

"Being in a minority, even a minority of one, did not make you mad," Orwell wrote.

"There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad."

In other words, the world may be mad, but that doesn't mean you have to be.


Cardinal Fang , 40 minutes ago link

Frank Zappa asked this very question decades ago...

Who Are The Brain Police?

https://youtu.be/DuABc9ZNtrA

sbin , 1 hour ago link

Was raised reading

Nice that an author referenced Orwell but if you do not understand the original works then the authors reference is meaningless.

HRH of Aquitaine 2.0 , 1 hour ago link

" When the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, it was revealed that the Stasi, East Germany's secret police, had a full-time staff of 91,000.

When the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, it was revealed that the Stasi , East Germany's secret police, had a full-time staff of 91,000. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but what's frightening is that the organization had almost double that in informants, including children. And it wasn't just children reporting on parents; sometimes it was the other way around."

Confidential informants should be illegal.

How many people are employed by the various Federal intelligence agencies, of which there are 17 the last time I heard. Hundreds of thousands of Federal employees, protected by strong government employee unions.

When this shitshow goes live, it will only take a small team to shut off the water that is necessary to keep the NSA servers cool in Utah.

New_Meat , 2 hours ago link

"Unlike other 20th-century totalitarians, ..."

I offer DPRK and in many ways PRC as counter-examples.

Thom Paine , 2 hours ago link

Movies like the Matrix actually helped people to question everything. What is real and not. Who is the enemy, and can we be sure. And when Conspiracy theories become fact, people learn. The problem is in later generations who get indoctrinated at school and college to not think, not question. Rational examination is forbidden.

[Oct 09, 2019] George Orwell assumes that if such societies as he describes in Nineteen Eighty-Four come into being there will be several super states. These super states will naturally be in opposition to each other or (a novel point) will pretend to be much more in opposition than in fact they are

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... This is the direction in which the world is going at the present time, and the trend lies deep in the political, social and economic foundations of the contemporary world situation. ..."
"... Specifically the danger lies in the structure imposed on Socialist and on Liberal capitalist communities by the necessity to prepare for total war with the U.S.S.R. and the new weapons, of which of course the atomic bomb is the most powerful and the most publicized. But danger lies also in the acceptance of a totalitarian outlook by intellectuals of all colours. ..."
"... Two of the principal super states will obviously be the Anglo-American world and Eurasia. If these two great blocks line up as mortal enemies it is obvious that the Anglo-Americans will not take the name of their opponents and will not dramatize themselves on the scene of history as Communists. Thus they will have to find a new name for themselves. The name suggested in Nineteen Eighty-Four is of course Ingsoc, but in practice a wide range of choices is open. In the U.S.A. the phrase "Americanism" or "hundred per cent Americanism" is suitable and the qualifying adjective is as totalitarian as anyone could wish. ..."
"... Pretty much explains the SDP and NuLabourInc and his name sake Blair and our political landscape of the last 50 years, don't you think? ..."
"... Also pay attention to the 'parody phrase. ' ..."
Oct 09, 2019 | off-guardian.org

Dungroanin -> MikeE Oct 9, 2019 12:46 AM

That is my down tick.

Because i feel that some agenda is at play. I'm not going to accuse you of trolling, or even a bit of gas lighting, but it seems like a slide into classic red scaring and recasting of Eric Blair

By way of explaining my emotion and since you mention Warburg, here is an example of Orwellian post humous attribution. He never said "imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever."

'from a post-publication press release directed by publisher Fredric Warburg toward readers who "had misinterpreted [Orwell's] aim, taking the novel as a criticism of the current British Labour Party, or of contemporary socialism in general." The quotation from the press release was "soon given the status of a last statement or deathbed appeal, given that Orwell was hospitalized at the time and dead six months later."

You can read more at georgeorwellnovels.com, which provides a great deal of context on this press release, which runs, in full, as follows:

It has been suggested by some of the reviewers of Nineteen Eighty-Four that it is the author's view that this, or something like this, is what will happen inside the next forty years in the Western world. This is not correct. I think that, allowing for the book being after all a parody, something like Nineteen Eighty-Four could happen. This is the direction in which the world is going at the present time, and the trend lies deep in the political, social and economic foundations of the contemporary world situation.

Specifically the danger lies in the structure imposed on Socialist and on Liberal capitalist communities by the necessity to prepare for total war with the U.S.S.R. and the new weapons, of which of course the atomic bomb is the most powerful and the most publicized. But danger lies also in the acceptance of a totalitarian outlook by intellectuals of all colours.

The moral to be drawn from this dangerous nightmare situation is a simple one: Don't let it happen. It depends on you.

George Orwell assumes that if such societies as he describes in Nineteen Eighty-Four come into being there will be several super states. This is fully dealt with in the relevant chapters of Nineteen Eighty-Four. It is also discussed from a different angle by James Burnham in The Managerial Revolution. These super states will naturally be in opposition to each other or (a novel point) will pretend to be much more in opposition than in fact they are.

Two of the principal super states will obviously be the Anglo-American world and Eurasia. If these two great blocks line up as mortal enemies it is obvious that the Anglo-Americans will not take the name of their opponents and will not dramatize themselves on the scene of history as Communists. Thus they will have to find a new name for themselves. The name suggested in Nineteen Eighty-Four is of course Ingsoc, but in practice a wide range of choices is open. In the U.S.A. the phrase "Americanism" or "hundred per cent Americanism" is suitable and the qualifying adjective is as totalitarian as anyone could wish.

If there is a failure of nerve and the Labour party breaks down in its attempt to deal with the hard problems with which it will be faced, tougher types than the present Labour leaders will inevitably take over, drawn probably from the ranks of the Left, but not sharing the Liberal aspirations of those now in power. Members of the present British government, from Mr. Attlee and Sir Stafford Cripps down to Aneurin Bevan will never willingly sell the pass to the enemy, and in general the older men, nurtured in a Liberal tradition, are safe, but the younger generation is suspect and the seeds of totalitarian thought are probably widespread among them. It is invidious to mention names, but everyone could without difficulty think for himself of prominent English and American personalities whom the cap would fit.'
http://www.openculture.com/2014/11/george-orwells-final-warning.html

-- -- -- -

Pretty much explains the SDP and NuLabourInc and his name sake Blair and our political landscape of the last 50 years, don't you think?

Also pay attention to the 'parody phrase. '
'
As i wrote earlier, perhaps Blair of Eton ultimately saw how clearly hist talents had been misused by the 'totalitarians' before he died.

I understand that some of his works are still censored and others never published. As are his state employment in propaganda on which he probably based his 'parody' on.

[Sep 28, 2019] Orwell vs Jack London

The Iron Heel is a dystopian[1] novel by American writer Jack London, first published in 1908.[2] Generally considered to be "the earliest of the modern dystopian" fiction,[3] it chronicles the rise of an oligarchic tyranny in the United States.
In The Iron Heel, Jack London's socialist views are explicitly on display. A forerunner of soft science fiction novels and stories of the 1960s and '70s, the book stresses future changes in society and politics while paying much less attention to technological changes.
The novel is based on the fictional "Everhard Manuscript" written by Avis Everhard... The Manuscript itself covers the years 1912 through 1932 in which the Oligarchy (or "Iron Heel") arose in the United States. In Asia, Japan conquered East Asia and created its own empire, India gained independence, and Europe became socialist. Canada, Mexico, and Cuba formed their own Oligarchies and were aligned with the U.S. (London remains silent as to the fates of South America, Africa, and the Middle East.)
In North America, the Oligarchy maintains power for three centuries until the Revolution succeeds and ushers in the Brotherhood of Man. During the years of the novel, the First Revolt is described and preparations for the Second Revolt are discussed. From the perspective of Everhard, the imminent Second Revolt is sure to succeed but from Meredith's frame story , the reader knows that Ernest Everhard's hopes would go unfulfilled until centuries after his death.
The Oligarchy is the largest monopoly of trusts (or robber barons ) who manage to squeeze out the middle class by bankrupting most small to mid-sized business as well as reducing all farmers to effective serfdom . This Oligarchy maintains power through a "labor caste " and the Mercenaries . Laborers in essential industries like steel and rail are elevated and given decent wages, housing, and education. Indeed, the tragic turn in the novel (and Jack London's core warning to his contemporaries) is the treachery of these favored unions which break with the other unions and side with the Oligarchy. Further, a second, military caste is formed: the Mercenaries. The Mercenaries are officially the army of the US but are in fact in the employ of the Oligarchs.
Jack London ambitiously predicted a breakdown of the US republic starting a few years past 1908, but various events have caused his predicted future to diverge from actual history. Most crucially, though London placed quite accurately the time when international tensions will reach their peak (1913 in "The Iron Heel", 1914 in actual history ), he (like many others at the time) predicted that when this moment came, labor solidarity would prevent a war that would include the US, Germany and other nations.
The Iron Heel is cited by George Orwell 's biographer Michael Shelden as having influenced Orwell's most famous novel Nineteen Eighty-Four . [4] Orwell himself described London as having made "a very remarkable prophecy of the rise of Fascism ", in the book and believed that London's understanding of the primitive had made him a better prophet "than many better-informed and more logical thinkers." [5] ( The Iron Heel - Wikipedia )
Sep 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

As writer or thinker, Jack London can't touch George Orwell, but he's nearly the Brit's equal when it comes to describing society's bottom. To both, being a writer is as much a physical as an intellectual endeavor. Wading into everything, they braved all discomforts and dangers. This attitude has become very rare, and not just among writers. Trapped in intensely mediated lives, we all think we know more as we experience less and less.

At age 14, London worked in a salmon cannery. At 16, he was an oyster pirate. At 17, he was a sailor on a sealing schooner that reached Japan. At 18, London crossed the country as a hobo and, near Buffalo, was jailed for 30 days for vagrancy. At 21, he prospected for gold in the Klondike. London was also a newsboy, longshoreman, roustabout, window washer, jute mill grunt, carpet cleaner and electrician, so he had many incidents, mishaps and ordeals to draw from, and countless characters to portray.

London's The Road chronicles his hobo and prison misadventure. Condemned to hard labor, the teenager nearly starved, "While we got plenty of water, we did not get enough of the bread. A ration of bread was about the size of one's two fists, and three rations a day were given to each prisoner. There was one good thing, I must say, about the water -- it was hot. In the morning it was called 'coffee,' at noon it was dignified as 'soup,' and at night it masqueraded as 'tea.' But it was the same old water all the time."

London quickly worked his way up the clink's hierarchy, to become one of 13 enforcers for the guards. This experience alone should have taught him that in all situations, not just dire ones, each man will prioritize his own interest and survival, and that there's no solidarity among the "downtrodden" or whatever. Orwell's Animal Farm is a parable about this. Since man is an egoist, power lust lurks everywhere.

During the Russo-Japanese War a decade later, London would approvingly quote a letter from Japanese socialists to their Russian comrades, but this pacific gesture was nothing compared to the nationalistic fervor engulfing both countries. Like racism, nationalism is but self love. Though clearly madness if overblown, it's unextinguishable.

Jailed, London the future socialist stood by as his gang disciplined a naïf, "I remember a handsome young mulatto of about twenty who got the insane idea into his head that he should stand for his rights. And he did have the right of it, too; but that didn't help him any. He lived on the topmost gallery. Eight hall-men took the conceit out of him in just about a minute and a half -- for that was the length of time required to travel along his gallery to the end and down five flights of steel stairs. He travelled the whole distance on every portion of his anatomy except his feet, and the eight hall-men were not idle. The mulatto struck the pavement where I was standing watching it all. He regained his feet and stood upright for a moment. In that moment he threw his arms wide apart and omitted an awful scream of terror and pain and heartbreak. At the same instant, as in a transformation scene, the shreds of his stout prison clothes fell from him, leaving him wholly naked and streaming blood from every portion of the surface of his body. Then he collapsed in a heap, unconscious. He had learned his lesson, and every convict within those walls who heard him scream had learned a lesson. So had I learned mine. It is not a nice thing to see a man's heart broken in a minute and a half."

Jailed, you immediately recover your racial consciousness, but London apparently missed this. In any case, a lesser writer or man wouldn't confess to such complicity with power. Elsewhere, London admits to much hustling and lying, and even claims these practices made him a writer, "I have often thought that to this training of my tramp days is due much of my success as a story-writer. In order to get the food whereby I lived, I was compelled to tell tales that rang true [ ] Also, I quite believe it was my tramp-apprenticeship that made a realist out of me. Realism constitutes the only goods one can exchange at the kitchen door for grub."

Informed by hard-earned, bitter experience, London's accounts resonate and convince, even when outlandish, for they are essentially true about the human condition.

London on a fellow prisoner, "He was a huge, illiterate brute, an ex-Chesapeake-Bay-oyster-pirate, an 'ex-con' who had done five years in Sing Sing, and a general all-around stupidly carnivorous beast. He used to trap sparrows that flew into our hall through the open bars. When he made a capture, he hurried away with it into his cell, where I have seen him crunching bones and spitting out feathers as he bolted it raw."

Though London often uses "beast" or "beastly" to describe how humans are treated, this fellow appears to be congenitally bestial, with his all-around stupidity. As for the other prisoners, "Our hall was a common stews, filled with the ruck and the filth, the scum and dregs, of society -- hereditary inefficients, degenerates, wrecks, lunatics, addled intelligences, epileptics, monsters, weaklings, in short, a very nightmare of humanity." Though many are wrecked, others are born deficient, addled or weak, but in our retarded days, morons must be smart in other ways, and raging monsters are merely oppressed into mayhem or murder.

ORDER IT NOW

But of course, society does oppress, then and now. Remember that an 18-year-old London was sentenced to 30 days of hard labor for merely being in a strange city without a hotel reservation. Another inmate was doing 60 for eating from a trash can, "He had strayed out to the circus ground, and, being hungry, had made his way to the barrel that contained the refuse from the table of the circus people. 'And it was good bread,' he often assured me; 'and the meat was out of sight.' A policeman had seen him and arrested him, and there he was." Well, at least Americans are no longer locked up for dumpster diving, so there's progress for you, but then many must still feed from the garbage, with that number rapidly rising.

Though London was a worldwide celebrity at his death in 1916, his fame faded so fast that Orwell could comment in 1944, "Jack London is one of those border-line writers whose works might be forgotten altogether unless somebody takes the trouble to revive them."

London's most enduring book may turn out to be The People of the Abyss, his 1903 investigation into the abjectly impoverished of London's East End.

Dressed accordingly, London joined its homeless to see how they survived. With a 58-year-old carter and a 65-year-old carpenter, London wandered the cold streets, "From the slimy, spittle-drenched, sidewalk, they were picking up bits of orange peel, apple skin, and grape stems, and, they were eating them. The pits of greengage plums they cracked between their teeth for the kernels inside. They picked up stray bits of bread the size of peas, apple cores so black and dirty one would not take them to be apple cores, and these things these two men took into their mouths, and chewed them, and swallowed them; and this, between six and seven o'clock in the evening of August 20, year of our Lord 1902, in the heart of the greatest, wealthiest, and most powerful empire the world has ever seen."

Having mingled with many homeless in cities across America, I can attest that the food situation is not as bad in that unraveling empire, but the squalor is just as appalling, if not worse. A Wall Street Journal headline, "California's Biggest Cities Confront a 'Defecation Crisis'." There's no need to import public shitting from shitholes, since there's already plenty of it, homegrown and well-fertilized with smirkingly cynical policies.

Trump, "We can't let Los Angeles, San Francisco and numerous other cities destroy themselves by allowing what's happening," but he's only talking about the unsightliness of it all, not its root cause, which is a deliberately wrecked economy that, over decades, has fabulously enriched his and our masters. This, too, is a controlled demolition.

Ensconced in some leafy suburb, you might be missing this beastly, raving, zonked out and shitty transformation. Jack London, though, never recoiled from society's diarrhea. My favorite passage of The People of the Abyss is his account of bathing, so to speak, in a workhouse:

We stripped our clothes, wrapping them up in our coats and buckling our belts about them, and deposited them in a heaped rack and on the floor -- a beautiful scheme for the spread of vermin. Then, two by two, we entered the bathroom. There were two ordinary tubs, and this I know: the two men preceding had washed in that water, we washed in the same water, and it was not changed for the two men that followed us. This I know; but I am also certain that the twenty-two of us washed in the same water.

I did no more than make a show of splashing some of this dubious liquid at myself, while I hastily brushed it off with a towel wet from the bodies of other men. My equanimity was not restored by seeing the back of one poor wretch a mass of blood from attacks of vermin and retaliatory scratching.

If other men had to endure that, why shouldn't London, especially since he was trying to understand these wretches?

Many moons, suns and saturns ago, I taught a writing course at UPenn, and for one assignment, I asked students to take the subway to a strange stop, get off, walk around and observe, but don't do it in the dark, I did warn them. Frightened, one girl couldn't get off, so simply wrote about her very first ride. At least she got a taste of an entirely alien