HomeArticleSchrödinger’s President

Schrödinger’s President

Right-wing pundit Ann Coulter went on a surprisingly vitriolic anti-Trump rant the other day, calling the president a “complete blithering idiot”, an “actual retard”, and “the most disloyal human God ever created” for his treatment of Jeff Sessions and his failure to build the border wall per his campaign promise.

“Coulter is right,” comedian Tim Dillon tweeted in response. “Trump doesn’t really care about immigration or the wall, it was just the way to win. He likes winning. You don’t live your entire life being a Hollywood star who hangs with the Clintons and Jeffrey Epstein and then decide you actually like people from Ohio.”

Which is true. Trump and his handlers understood that rising anti-immigration sentiment in America was a key to winning the presidency, but he never cared about immigration and never had any intention of going out of his way to do anything about it (which is why even his deportation numbers are still below Obama’s). Just one of the many ways where the popular narrative about Trump–the story everyone’s telling about him–differs wildly from the reality.

It is normal to have multiple contradictory mainstream narratives running about a president at the same time, and for none of those narratives to be accurate. Obama was simultaneously a progressive champion of sanity and a socialist Muslim from Kenya hell bent on America’s destruction, none of which was true but both of which were believed with equal fervor by either side of the illusory partisan divide.

What’s unusual about Trump is that there are multiple contradictory narratives running about him at the same time, within the same political factions. His own base is able to hold the belief that Trump is a brilliant strategic mastermind who is commanding a covert counter-coup to overthrow the Deep State, for example, while simultaneously excusing all the many, many establishment capitulations that he makes as being beyond his control. Much like Schrödinger’s proverbial pet Trump exists for them in two mutually contradictory states at once: a skillful hero who is taking down the Deep State, and a hapless victim who can’t control what happens in his own administration because it’s all being controlled by the Deep State.

On the other side of the imaginary partisan divide, Democrats spent years advancing the mutually contradictory narratives that Trump is at once (A) idiotic, (B) mentally ill, and (C) running a covert operation to sabotage America in the interests of Russia–but cleverly evading detection under intense scrutiny. They also hold him as simultaneously presenting an unprecedented threat to American democracy and also perfectly safe to keep voting in support of continuing and expanding his military and surveillance powers.

None of these narratives have anything to do with reality, yet they consume an immense amount of oxygen in US political discourse while Trump continues and expands the many depraved agendas of his predecessors.

Trump is not a populist champion of the little guy, nor a closet Nazi working to establish a white ethnostate, nor a Kremlin asset, but is in fact nothing other a miserable rich man from a miserable rich family who did what it takes to get elected to the presidency of a racist, corrupt, bloodthirsty empire and remain there for a full term. Everything else is narrative which is wholly divorced from reality.

The reason we can have wildly popular narratives dominating mainstream political discourse for years on end without their containing a shred of actual reality is because human experience is dictated by mental stories far more than most people realize. Establishment power structures, who have their hands in both parties of America’s two-handed political sock puppet show, stand everything to gain and nothing to lose by using narrative control to keep the public debating fake nonsense instead of the actual horrible things this administration is doing like imprisoning Julian Assange for journalism, vetoing attempts to save Yemen, inflicting starvation sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, and initiating cold war escalations against two nuclear-armed nations.

If people truly understood the extent to which mental narrative dominates their experience of life, propaganda, advertising and all other forms of psychological manipulation would be regarded by our society similarly to physical assault or property theft. For anyone who is interested in the pernicious ways narrative manipulation is used to keep people confused and conflicted while powerful people roll out toxic agendas, Trump is a very interesting case study indeed.

If humanity is to survive, people are going to have to evolve beyond the sticky relationship with mental narrative which enables establishment spinmeisters to keep an entire nation transfixed by fake stories about a very conventionally evil president instead of pushing for the real changes we’ll need to make if we’re to overcome the existential hurdles looming on our horizon. Learning to distinguish reality from narrative will send the whole prison crashing down.

________________________

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Latest comments

  • ‘Much like Schrödinger’s proverbial pet Trump exists for them in two mutually contradictory states at once: a skillful hero who is taking down the Deep State, and a hapless victim who can’t control what happens in his own administration because it’s all being controlled by the Deep State.’

    Excellent analogy..and so true. Trump is a Deep State minion.

  • George Orwell Sock Puppet Theatre: https://youtu.be/5gHpsu3R9XM

    • Dig a bit deeper, Eric. Sessions took advice/direction from get-Trump-out-of-office DOJ holdovers—from Obama’s administration. // Ann Coulter wisely has remarked, ‘women ought not to be allowed to vote‘ (( most are driven by emotion, not logic )). -Rick

      • This is village’s idiot logic. Who let you out of the mental institution? You are not taking my vote away from me. You can only have it if you kill me.

        • Heather:
          Your sex voted Adolf Hitler into office. What TERRIFYING events followed that tragic, female vote? \\ Yes, Heather, no one can take your vote away—but the long term outcome of WOMEN (and “men” who EMOTE just like them) HAVING the VOTE, is total destruction of high-culture civilization . . . an end to your and everyone’s franchise and general well-being. VOTE on! -Rick

  • Minnesota Mayor Threatens to Arrest Churchgoers
    38,385 views•May 23, 2020
    —————-
    The best narrative ever. THE GREATEST STORY EVER TOLD.
    Rorate Caeli – Catholic Gregorian Chant Hymns
    Petrus Josephus
    https://youtu.be/-EjHCYLukRY https://youtu.be/d9pl_Z5aAAM
    https://youtu.be/1pyF2aFMI_4
    Drop down ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness:

    We have sinned, and are as an unclean thing,
    and we all do fade as a leaf:
    and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away;
    thou hast hid thy face from us:
    and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.

    Behold, O Lord, the affliction of thy people
    and send forth Him who is to come
    send forth the Lamb, the ruler of the earth from Petra of the desert to the mount of the daughter of Sion
    that He may take away the yoke of our captivity

    Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord,
    and my servant whom I have chosen;
    that ye may know me and believe me:
    I, even I, am the Lord, and beside me there is no Savior:
    and there is none that can deliver out of my hand.

    Comfort ye, comfort ye, my people,
    my salvation shall not tarry:
    why wilt thou waste away in sadness?
    why hath sorrow seized thee?
    Fear not, for I will save thee:
    for I am the Lord thy God,
    the Holy One of Israel, thy Redeemer.
    Complicit Clergy
    6.82K subscribers

    UPDATE: Minnesota Governor Capitulates On Discriminatory Religious Restrictions
    https://www.complicitclergy.com/2020/

  • It is apparent the overlords of all things media have a running bet that their control over the minds of “quite enough” people did some time ago progress to the point they can ultimately pick two of their own choice from a pile of the most vile historical scoundrels to meet in a glorious celebration of freedom and democracy AKA the election process. The free citizens of the world who wish to participate in a one or two party dominated, very controlled, somewhat corrupt political system may each periodically cast a vote in an attempt to elect one such carefully selected and groomed scoundrel as as a temporary leader, of sorts, to the extent that deliberate ongoing opposition allows (if at all). As such, the term “lesser of two evils” has been coined. It could only be more entertaining if the loser of such election could be lowered slowly into an active volcano, to be then followed by the winner at the end of his, her or its pre-defined term limited service. I realize the volcano thing has been used, but we must admit it does have some appeal.

  • Caitlin wrote last week “All we have to do is inform each other about what’s really going on.” I beg to differ. As someone wrote above: “The fact of the matter is that reality is unattainable except for the wise.” But only perhaps 1 % of the population are wise, not completely wise, but a little more so than the rest. Don’t blame people for their ignorance and indoctrination. Blame those who brainwashed them. Read more of this here: http://www.wisdompage.com/2013%20Articles/Molyneaux%20essay.pdf

  • Too bad René Girard is no longer with us, for I would have loved to hear his take on the classic scapegoating of Donald Trump. My formerly balanced, intelligent liberal friends have gone insane with an urgency to complete the ugly ritual, to get it on. It’s like a blood lust for them, wild, crazy, driven. And they cannot entertain the notion that their current insanity has been seeded, fostered, and promulgated every step of the way by the mass media. All they know is that they must, must, must get rid of Trump as soon as possible and by any means necessary. Their eyes glaze when they speak of it; it’s as if they’re hypnotized. They have turned into zombies.

    • I been thinking/feeling: I’m entirely alone here! You have nailed it, S. Black. Thanks, -Rick

      • Anyone who believes that technology is able to correct problems caused by technology has obviously no idea that there is no technological solution to environmental problems – at least not at the scale proposed.

        Does anyone with even an inkling of engineering really think that the production of millions of wind generators ,the production of millions of square meters of solar panels, the increases needed in transmission infrastructure is in any way not environmentally damaging?

        Does anyone really think that the production of batteries capable of storing mega to to gigawatts of energy are really environmentally friendly? Look at the impact of Lithium extraction.

        The much hyped of hydrogen production for fuel is one of those even more idiotic examples considering the energy needed for the production of a secondary energy source demanding quite complex technological solutions regarding storage that in itself are less than environmentally friendly.

        There are other approaches, they however cut into the “convenience ” factor of mega projects by the usual suspects who just use “green” energy as a new market slogan to further enhance the exploitation of resources and labour.
        https://climateandcapitalism.com/2016/09/30/are-renewables-really-environmentally-friendly/

        https://www.pnas.org/content/114/26/6722 (referring to the Jacobson et al study)

        “Many previous studies of deep decarbonization of electric power illustrate that much can be done with wind and solar power but that it is extremely difficult to achieve complete decarbonization of the energy system, even when using every current technology and tool available, including energy efficiency and wind, hydroelectric, and solar energy as well as carbon capture and storage, bioenergy, and nuclear energy (1⇓⇓⇓⇓–6, 8⇓–10). In contrast, ref. 11 asserts that it is cost-effective to fully decarbonize the US energy system primarily using just three inherently variable generating technologies: solar PV, solar CSP, and wind, to supply more than 95% of total energy in the proposal presented in ref. 11. Such an extraordinarily constrained conclusion demands a standard of proof that ref. 11 does not meet.”

        https://consciousnessofsheep.co.uk/2017/05/17/the-irony-that-gives-the-lie-to-green-energy/

        • You possess a fine, rational mind—so rare, these days! Thanks, -Rick

    • The transformation that Trump haters underwent has been a frightening thing to watch. People who used to be rational, thoughtful and reasonable human beings have indeed turned into zombies. You can’t talk to them, many have disowned family members over Trump, and they go through each day, all day, in a state of bitter hatred that cannot help but do harm to themselves, but they don’t see it and won’t even consider the possibility. Worse, they have politicized every aspect of our lives; everything bad is blamed on Trump, and there will not be anything good in our lives until he’s gone. Like Antifa says, “by any means necessary.” Truly frightening.

    • HA HA HA – Trump does or says something stupid. The media reports it. The liberal side castigates it. The conservative side defends it! And it’s Liberals that have become unbalanced!! LOL

  • Trump has made America Great Again!
    The news flashes around the world. America is Number One!
    America Leads the World!
    …. in coronavirus deaths. And, also in number of infections. Isn’t that great!
    America is Number One!
    America is Number One!
    America is Great Again!
    and, it turns out that those evil government beauracrats have been trying to hinder our great leader in his quest for greatness by massively undercounting the number of coronavirus deaths. How dare the try to hide our Great Leaders Great Accomplishment!
    States are now trying to differentiate between those who officially die of coronavirus, and those who just happen to die while having coronavirus. If you have a heart attack while your are fighting for your life because you can’t breathe, then you’ve died of a heart attack and not of coronavirus. They deny our Great Leader his Great Credit for making America number one in killing its own citizens.
    And, now people are digging into records and discovering that there has been massive fraud in reporting these deaths. While America can rightly and properly claim one hundred thousand dead from coronavirus, it turns out record numbers of people have been dying of pneumonia this year. More that ever before. States are saying that people are dying of pneumonia at up to FIVE times the normal rate. This is obviously a plot against our Great Leader. They are trying to deny our Great Leader his Great Accomplishment of killing more Americans than any other of those wimpy leaders of those shithole countries that can’t compare with America for Greatness.
    America is Number One!
    America is Great Again!
    ….. too bad we won’t live through it.

  • “Let all compounds be dissolved.” (But can we all become Mr. Spock?)

    http://www.sirbacon.org/links/4idols.htm

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/998321.A_Nation_Of_Sheep

    http://www.jayhanson.org/loop.htm

    The current technoplex may collapse but humans will remain humans and “narratives” will always be with us as they always have been. If the technoplex does collapse, at least we may be returned to days when we humans were not so powerful (and hence dangerous to ourselves and other lifeforms) and when there were not such vast power differentials ( social-economic inequalities) that enable a few to dominate the many (Yes, largely by controlling “narrative”).

    Collapse (sharply and deeply reduced GDP that never recovers) could be a very good thing indeed…to save us from ourselves. Maybe we’re in collapse now but the process may require at least a generation to be complete, and it won’t be fun times while the technoplex that keeps 99+% of us alive falls apart. For sure, every effort, and all sorts of narratives, that can be made will be made to keep the thing going. Better to try to walk away from it if there’s any way you can, and let it fall apart. Forget about doing anything to transform it.

  • For many years I used to read John Michael Greer’s blog, The Archdruid Report https://thearchdruidreport-archive.200605.xyz/2017/05/index.html . He is a very deep thinker, and one of his interests was long-term history. Patterns in the rise and fall of civilisations, that sort of thing. He used to track the unfolding geopolitical processes and compare them with the many other similar times in the past.
    .
    What we are going through now is a late stage of a collapsing civilisation, and part of what happens is that the dominant narratives become untenable, and there is a general lost of faith in the established institutions of the civilisation. A crisis of legitimacy. In part it’s because the narratives no longer track very well with the unfolding reality.
    .
    At a time like this, many people are lost in confusion, not knowing what to think (or even how to think), but for a few it is a moment when the fact of the narrative becomes easier to see. So there is an opportunity to consciously move beyond the narrative and construct a different one. Much harder than you might imagine. And few people are able to do it. Eventually (provided the species survives) reality itself imposes a more realistic set of narratives and the process recycles (the same, but different).
    .
    I am not sure there is much evidence that clear-minded thinkers are able to sway the panicking masses, although such people are always of help in a crisis. In the end it seems to be that things work out, people muddle through and something new gradually emerges. With the ever-present possibility of outbreaks of death, misery and mayhem.
    .
    Although John Greer would probably disagree, (he predicts a slow process of collapse with occasional hard bumps), I do think that this time it’s different. We are in real danger here, and the time seems short.
    .
    What to do?
    .
    Caitlin, I fully concur that people need to awaken, and shake off the burden of propaganda/power narrative. I wonder whether it is possible. As RON CAMBELL says below, “but [?where] is [?the] magic wand or a pill to use on these people that are forever stuck in their illogical thinking. They love their confusion and they wallow in it.”
    .
    Also, for example Jordan Peterson claims that the narratives we hold are actually in part hard-wired through millions of years of evolution (starting before humans), so they are not just something we get to redesign as we go along. (I do believe, however, that it’s possible to detach from the process and become aware of it, and I suspect that Jordan himself has done something like that).
    .
    So, again, what to do?
    .
    I can only hold to the faith that action is meaningful. To act without being attached to the outcome. To act with good motivation. That’s a kind of power.
    .
    cheers, Glen.

  • “If humanity is to survive,…”
    .
    –It’s an interesting question, since we’re clearly a failed species. For example, look to whom we give nuclear weapons, the means of species and even global death.
    .
    Will we depart the planet before destroying it, and manage to survive off-Earth by developing a technocratic, high IQ, second civilization? It’s possible, certainly. Will we evolve our successor species, an artificial intelligence that supplants us, or with which we merge? Almost certainly, and if you combine polls of Nobelists, we’ll probably accomplish one of those within the next two centuries.
    .
    The brains of most of us are too small, too limited to evolve the way Caitlin believes is necessary, at least not in the time left to us before our weapons become far more destructive than our current crop of nuclear weapons. That level of human evolution takes millennia. We just don’t have the time.
    .
    We’ll need to take another route, one of those I mention, and success will probably involve a great deal of luck.
    .

  • I agree fully with what has been stated in this editorial about Trump!
    Trump is a lying deceitful, and smelly peace of dog crap. What comes out of the man’s mouth is dog crap, just as it was from Obama’s mouth. Lies lies and more lies! Both men are war mongels, both fill the pockets of themselves and their Corporate buddies, as proved by the wealth gain from this recent hand out by the US Fed, to the Corporate Giants such as Boeing, whom recieved alone, 25 Billion, whilst the other multi-billinare Corporates received HUNDREDS of billions, and let us not forget the Tomahawk Missile attack on Syria, whilst eating chocolate cake with the Chinese President!
    Trump is a swine, just like the rest of them, and my belief, is joined at the hip with the Democrates, not to mention the Israel Deep State.

    • True Stephen, I knew in 2016 that lame duck Donald Trump was a pieced of crap. Back then I read all about his sordid selfish life, his crimes, money laundering and cheating on his wives and knew what was coming.

  • If you actually look at Trump’s actions on immigration, they’ve been much more brutal and have effected large swaths of the population.
    — He rescinded previous rules putting priorities on who gets deported. That family living on the corner that’s got steady jobs and their kids in school were previously not a priority for deportation. Trump changed the rules so they were. Now they have a fear that always rests in their heart, that they didn’t have before.
    — Trump tends to go for showy actions. And to the American right-wing, the more brutal the more showy. Thus, the large public raids. Brutal, to make the sadists happy. Showy, to make Trump happy.
    — There are humanitarian groups in America that try to work in the deserts along the borders in order to keep the death toll down. They do things like leave containers of water in some of the deadly areas that migrants try to cross in desperation. Trump has been prosecuting these people. They haven’t actually broken any laws, and juries have upheld that. But Trump still drags them into court and scares them and makes them pay big legal fees for being a decent human being.
    ———-
    Its easy for ivory tower liberals to sit back and look at statistics about how many deportations occur under each President, then to launch into rants that have the ultimate end point of saying that oh, its not all that important to defeat Trump. But. I have to live here. I see the fear in people’s faces. I see what happens when you tell people they can go to a charity and get help, but they are too scared of ICE to get the help they need. I’ve seen families torn apart. I speak to mothers trying to raise children after ICE grabbed the father, and what had been a stable, safe family gets shattered. Trump must go.
    And guess what, we’ve already seen that Trump gets worse everytime he gets a little win. After the impeachment try, he’s been firing whistle-blowers and opponents left and right. Trump must be defeated because if he wins he’ll be ten times worse than he is right now. But, maybe that’s ok if you live in Australia and none of this really effects your life.

    • Is this richest family on Earth – the Rothschild family – LEFTIST or RIGHTIST? Is Soros leftist or rightists? Is rich man Bezos liberal or conservative. // This 50-years-plus student of social/cultural/political movements – an psychology-based study – is concerned about posters, here, MISTAKINGLY believing our rule-the-world OLIGARCHS are politically/socially/culturally conservative! They’re brain-blind, I suspect; that is, they haven’t much access to historical records and the LOGICAL side of their brain. -Rick

  • “if you can heal the symptoms
    but not affect the cause
    it’s quite a bit like trying to heal
    a gunshot wound with gauze

    if you instead attempt to wrest
    the pistol from the hand
    then I would not be able to
    equate my life with sand”
    — “Sand” by Phish

  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is facing new criticism after the Associated Press reported Friday that a state directive led to over 4,300 still recovering coronavirus patients being sent to New Yorks “already vulnerable nursing homes.”
    “It was a death sentence,” tweeted Daniel Choi, a doctor at the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra-Northwell. He called the directive a “horrendous idea” and “definitely not something any doctor taking care of nursing home patients would have signed off on.”
    Covid-19 sure has made it very clear that the United States is woefully devoid of any political leadership. This article is just one of many that proves that these people do not have a clue on how to lead our society!
    Cuomo Order That Sent Estimated 4,300 Covid-19 Patients to Nursing Homes Denounced as “Single Dumbest Decision Anyone Could Make” by Andrea Germanos!
    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/05/22/cuomo-order-sent-estimated-4300-covid-19-patients-nursing-homes-denounced-single

    • Cumins—mass murderer?

      • Cuomo—mass murderer?

    • Shitbags like Andrew Cuomo—now there’s a fantastic example of much of what is wrong with American politics in one family: dynastic political power combined with narrative control through the media. Who’s excited for ‘Cuomo 2024’ ? We are. And a message to Fredo: We hope your sniffles weren’t too bad, and that your tooth is OK—I’m sure you can use your high-quality private health insurance to get it fixed, you’ll be a pretty propagandist once more—we want you healthy so we can use you like the tool you are. Using fever dreams to peddle your authoritarian bullshit—what an asshat.

      And we won’t even get into Fredo’s wife, other than to point out that her peddling of pseudoscientific nonsense just reinforces the fact that this entire family is a fantastic example of what is wrong with this society. Their kids are probably little spoiled shits too. And no, sorry, the kids of the elite are not off limits, if that offends anyone, perhaps you would prefer the “revolutions” of AOC or Bernie.

  • “It is normal to have multiple contradictory mainstream narratives running about a president at the same time… Learning to distinguish reality from narrative will send the whole prison crashing down.”

    In the Multiple Worlds quantum view of reality and in Quantum Superposition, there are infinite versions of everything that exists including people. Through observation and choices, these infinite versions collapse down into a single version that we routinely experience. If this is true, there are infinite versions of each President. Some (somewhere) are even rather human and likable. Hard to believe, but there it is.

    President (whoever) is in all possible states of being until he/she is observed and thus collapses into that single state of being.

    So we keep getting various versions of a certain cut of leader/human type out of the infinite number of possible ones. Is it because we keep looking for that kind? Left or Right politics, it doesn’t matter. Does the World keep expecting a certain kind of leader and so that is what we are summoning ourselves from the Multiverse? Are we truly getting what we deserve as these… “public servants”?

    Like everything else in life, we see what we choose to see and ignore everything else that doesn’t fit that. But that doesn’t make that other stuff go away. It’s all out there churning away around us. President (whoever) IS this and IS that (and something else) ALL at the same time. We’d all be better off if Schrodinger’s cat was running things.

  • The pandemic has provided a vehicle for Donald Trump and the obsessively aggressive military-industrial complex in Washington,D.C. to confront China. It all adds to profits, with the bonus of steering public attention away from Donald Trumps pathetic mismanagement of the countrys reaction to the shattering effects of the Covid-19 virus.
    The pretentious panjandrum in the White House is full of self-importance and convinced that he does not have to justify any of his actions. He is revving up tension around the world, energetically aided by the venomous Mr. Pompeo and the profit-hungry military-industrial complex. The future is dark, and not just because of the Covid-19 pandemic. This highly relevant article can be read here:
    Washington,D.C. Prefers to Ignore the Pandemic and Ramp Up Confrontation by Brian Cloughley!
    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/05/26/washington-prefers-to-ignore-the-pandemic-and-ramp-up-confrontation/

  • Hi Caity. By dint of their huge connections and campaign contributions, the ultimate conclusion of this article is pretty much what I’ve been saying in simple terms.
    The oligarchs own and control nearly all of the Washington, D.C. politicians. They foment the fighting between the two parties and their followers, because it is human nature to take sides – and all of the fighting, like a magician’s distractions – is what prevents most people from seeing that those at the top are stealing more of our country, the world and our freedoms on a daily basis.
    Of course, there’s much more to it, but everything exists within a sphere in which both parties are led by people with the same goals and aspirations – to both retain and grow the wealth and power already acquired. What those taking sides never realize is that each of us , regardless of side, has more in common with every one on the other side than any single one of us has in common with any single oligarch.
    As our freedoms evaporate, I am left to wonder whether the majority of Americans will simply permit the slow side toward totalitarianism to continue, or whether they will finally shout, ‘Enough,’ and revolt. I fear the former, because even the poorest Americans are unwilling to give up what little security they have. They can’t even see the possibility of a better future for all.

    • Sorry for the typo – it should read ‘slow slide toward totalitarianism,’ not ‘slow side.’

      • Much light in your assessment, Harry. // This scribbler has raised many alarms, beginning in the late 1980s, about evil oligarchs’ behind-the-scenes machinations. // What you may not know is, they are left-wing totalitarians, hell-bent on enslaving us under what I’ve coined as: One-World Global Economic Socialism ( Rothschild-sourced machinations ). -Rick

        • Ah shit, here we go again with diuchebag ascribing left wing motives to people who enact right wing policies. Dumb as fuck. Just go jump in a lake, fool.

          • Yeah, you’re clueless while writing ANGRILY. // Read a history book—or two. -Rick

            • Is there a History book that says Mao brutally raped 40,000 young girls, because you have made that claim here. I’d like to see if you have any evidence to back up that claim.

              • Word-search “Mao rape cultural revolution”. -Rich

                • There’s no proof of anything in any of that, least of all your crazy claim that Mao brutally raped 40,000 young girls.

                  • Okay, let’s say . . . 40? . . . 400? . . . 4000? // Now, let it go. -Rick

                    • You said it was 40,000. Now you say it wan’t. Were you lying tthen or are yu lying now?

                    • I was mocking you, for your inability to search the issue. // One would think, that you’d be more concerned about enemies of Mao hanging naked in mess halls, being sliced and diced for food—and not having anything to do with famine. -Rick. //

  • What we are facing today is the consequences of education systems which do not do more than provide cogs for the capitalist machine. The levels of ignorance which exist in a world with unprecedented technology prove to be a deadly combination. Ending this ignorance entirely is a utopian affair. But we can begin to make a dent today.

    Remember, you are morally justified in using force to keep a child from running into a busy street. And even if you don’t particularly like the kid, they could cause an accident and hurt someone else.

    HELP WANTED: Wranglers and Dent-Makers

    November 2024.

    We are coming. Expect us.

    Let’s make one hell of a dent:
    http://www.mediafire.com/file/k1omyaf0r73shvk/Twenty-Twenty-four.pdf/file

    • Have you studied leftist/libertine/hedonist/atheist Bolsheviks’ history of RAPING and BUTCHERING humans – adults and children! – in pursuit of an IMPOSSIBLE Utopia? // What childhood trauma instilled a wish for such blood-letting savagery, Infinite Onion? // Read Roy’s post, as that’s a classic expression of BPD: Borderline Personality Disorder. // There is a cure for that: Learning to appreciate and love a puppy (( no matter the age, all dogs are P U P P I E S !!! )), as puppies teach otherwise angry/hateful/vengeful men: Platonic love. // Canines are healers of the universe—and of the Roy’s in this world. -Rick

      • Your fantasy stories often involve rape. What do you suppose Freud would think about that?

        • He’d think you’re P R ONJ E C T I N G. -Rick

          • Do you have intrusive thoughts? Hear voices?

            • Still projecting? —Rick

              • Hoping you’ll get help before becoming the nerxt school shooter

                • You’ve serious psych issues. You may not know, you’re being watched. -Rick

                  • Do you really believe that Mao brutally rapes 40,000 young girls?

        • P. R. O. J. E. C. T. I. N. G.

          • I like website that let you decide to personally block and not see the most obnoxious trolls. I wonder which right-wing billionaire oligarch is paying him to post his nonsense?

            • Is this richest family on Earth – the Rothschild family – LEFTIST or RIGHTIST? Is Soros leftist or rightists? Is rich man Bezos liberal or conservative. // This 50-years-plus student of social/cultural/political movements – an psychology-based study – is concerned about posters, here, MISTAKINGLY believing our rule-the-world OLIGARCHS are politically/socially/culturally conservative! They’re brain-blind, I suspect; that is, they haven’t much access to historical records and the LOGICAL side of their brain. -Rick

            • Normalizing censorship is always a bad idea. Text is the least intrusive medium for experiencing ideas which one does not like.

      • Striving for utopia means admitting your ignorance—and acknowledging that mistakes will be made.

        Friend, people die horrifically every day. They suffer, they struggle—needlessly. Because people made choices.

        We love our people enough to attempt a revolution in the United States. But we are no saints, saints get slaughtered by these men who hold power (along with many of those canines you discuss). Remember, saints come later. The people’s monsters are the only thing that have ever freed them from their oppressors. And we’re better than most of those who came before because we recognize that we are simply ignorant monsters and that our best will not be our children’s best.

        There are political options and there are dirtier options. We have our preferences, but we leave ALL on the table.

        • Speaking of “Friend,” InOn, it had been Quaker/Friend women’s blood-lust driving them to unrelentingly pester, cajole, embarrass and taunt Abraham Lincoln towards bloody war, which he was disinclined to effect. // Women – and “men” who emote just like women – cause the bloodiest wars—serving that REPTILIAN brain in them. // You may not know any of that, as my library may/might be much bigger than yours. Google-search “Quaker women Civil War”—it might still be there. -Rick

  • Caitlin, A N A R C H I C A L emoting strongly hints of mental . . . disturbance, resulting from childhood trauma: parents’ divorce? molestation/rape? witnessing some awful situation? possibly a head injury? genetics? sibling rivalry? a traumatic past life carry-over into this one? // Whichever the case, you’re serving the dark side by your both-sides-are-evil fence-sitting. -Rick

  • One of Obama’s last actions in office was to lift the ban on domestic government propaganda. This was probably done for a specific reason; somebody must have had some propaganda in mind, but I never see it discussed.

  • Caitlin Johnstone wrote:
    > Learning to distinguish reality from narrative will send the whole prison crashing down.
    .
    “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free…”

    • — maybe. But often, if people are deprived of one fable, they seek out or make another. Reality is a tough mother.

  • This is a unique time, because politicians have lost their normal feedback loop. Typically, a politician with the skills required to become National Leader is extremely sensitive to political opinion. They thus tend to correct mistakes quickly. They can sense they’ve made a mistake, and before lunch arrives their minions are out ‘correcting’ and saying what the National Leader really meant to say was “Blah, Blah, Blah ….”
    In this age of cornoavirus, this is not true. So, a politician can be incredibly stupid, and not get the feedback on how stupid they are being until months later.
    Trump and Bolsonaro are the examples of this. Both are incredibly stupid on this virus. If anything, their feedback sensitivity leads them into being stupid, then doubling down on being even more stupid. When they are stupid about this virus, their crowds cheer. Its easy to rail against public health orders that change people’s lives. People don’t like to have their lives changed. So, the politicians supporters cheer when the stupid politician comes out against public health orders for the common good. This is especially true for the right-wing politicians that constantly rail against the common good and say that only greed is good.
    But, now we are seeing the results of that stupidity. The USA and Brazil lead the world in virus cases and virus deaths. And with their continued stupidity and the month-long time lag between stupidity and death, they continue to be stupid. The virus deaths mount and climb, and for the stupid politician they find that the only way to prevent it was to be less stupid a month ago.
    Thus, there is a longer time lag than normal between stupid actions and the public anger that so many have died because of the stupidity.
    But still, politics has not been repealed. Both Trump and Bolsonaro will be headed out of office before the end of the year.

    • Trump is not stupid about knowing what he wants and how to get it. He does not care how many people get sick and die of coronavirus or anything else, as long as he knows how to shift blame. Are those who vote for him stupid? Sure. People like to be stupid because it’s easier than thinking and learning, at least in the short run.

      • Anarcissie: Do you subscribe to any newspaper or visit news sites? Are you from Pluto—an extraterrestrial, possibly? Trump wants people to die??? // Oh, maybe you’re just exaggerating, in order to express your H A T E D. -Rick // P.S. Caitlin instructs us to be more loving, in order to halt the madness. Take her advice, please. -thanks

        • Thanks for helping us understand Caitlin’s “instructions”.

    • Here’s what we do know, and what was known since the beginning: older people are at highest risk of succumbing to this virus while young people, especially those under ~40 years old, tend to handle it very well, with many being asymptomatic.
      ————————–

      What did governors do with this information? They forced nursing homes to take COVID patients, even when the nursing homes tried to refuse these patients. As a result, many thousands of people needlessly died. This was THE biggest mistake made during the pandemic. This decision had nothing at all to do with Trump.
      ———————–

      You’re proving Caitlin’s point with your post. Many mistakes have been made — the CDC’s contaminated tests, the orders to NOT wear masks (even for senior citizens when they were going out in public), forcing people into stores instead of helping/making stores prioritize online ordering, suggesting that this virus wasn’t airborne and couldn’t be transmitted from person to person, grossly overstating the fatality of the virus, etc. None of these things were related to Trump — the highly vaunted “experts” were responsible for most of these things — but all you’ll hear about in the MSM is how Trump was somehow responsible for the virus (some in the media actually saying that we should call it the Trump virus).
      ——————–

      People need to stop listening to what the media tells them to think. Instead, they need to look at the raw data for themselves to see what makes the most sense. Do genuine research and listen to as many possible perspectives as possible. That is the only way to know what is closest to the truth.
      ————–

      A government that tells you where you can go, when you can go, with whom you can go, what you can do…and then encourages citizens to spy on each other, uses drones and other technology to track and surveil citizens, and forbids people from working and earning a living , etc. is NOT a benevolent government; it is a tyrannical government. Nearly every single time when mass atrocities have occured throughout history, the changes were introduced as being “for the good of the people.”

      There are ways to encourage safe behavior, but tyranny is never the answer. People should always be alert to propaganda. We are eyeball-deep in it right now.

  • BY FAR, the shortest and sweetest piece I’ve read on Trump and American politics in general. “Learning to distinguish reality from narrative will send the whole prison crashing down.” There the solution lies in a nutshell, and if you want more background for this stunningly simple observation, check out “Hate, Inc.” by Matt Taibbi. I would differ from Caitlin’s take on the mess we’re in (why we’re in it, how to get out) by offering the suggestion that what we need is a new narrative based upon reality, as best we can glean it. Human beings are inherently storytellers IMHO and thus are unable to function fully and act effectively without one.

    • Which is why the first part of our book is entitled “Making You”—stories make us who we are and also who we will become.

      This book is a story. You need a story to displace a story. Metaphors and stories are far more potent (alas) than ideas; they are also easier to remember and more fun to read. Ideas come and go, stories stay.

      The act of writing is an act of attempted comprehension, and, in a childlike way, control; we are so baffled and exhausted by what has happened, we want to imagine that giving words to the unspeakable will make it somehow our own. We are narrative creatures, compelled to make sense of our surroundings through stories, and the stories we tell matter. Perhaps most important of all, the stories we tell ourselves matter.

      A novel, a story, a myth, or a tale, all have the same function: they spare us from the complexity of the world and shield us from its randomness. Myths impart order to the disorder of human perception and the perceived “chaos of human experience.”

      The written word is far more powerful than simply a reminder: it re-creates the past in the present, and gives us, not the familiar remembered thing, but the glittering intensity of the summoned-up hallucination. Anthropologists know that the written word is not merely an echo of a speaking voice. It is another kind of voice altogether, a conjurer’s trick of the first order.

      Somebody who’s writing has part of their motivation to impress themselves and their consciousness on others. There’s an unbelievable arrogance about even trying to write something. But you’ve also got to be arrogant to believe you can destroy an empire—and we certainly do.

      Let’s end the empire, friend.

      • I may be an old and feeble remnant of the 60s, but when it comes to ending the empire, I’ll date myself even more by shouting “Right On!” as I hobble into the battle.

        • Is this richest family on Earth – the Rothschild – LEFTIST or RIGHTIST? Is Soros leftist or rightists? Is richman Bezos liberal or conservative. // This 50-years-plus student of social/cultural/political movements – psychology-based study – is concerned about posters, here, MISTAKINGLY believing our rule-the-world OLIGARCHS are politically/socially/culturally conservative. They’re brain-blind, I suspect; that is, they haven’t much access to historical records. -Rick

        • “Onward, ever onward, bear our crosses until we can take the weight no more, and then summon up our justified rage, and carry onward, ever more. They cannot stop the march, they have killed so many, but onward, ever onward, we have risen from the ashes like the phoenix. We show our scars, they merrily gloss over theirs. Onward ever onward, my brothers and sisters, our fights continue, it is more urgent than ever that we march, onward ever onward.”

  • And such will continue to be the case as long as we continue the fantasy that we require a gang of Psychopaths In Charge (aka government) to survive and prosper. We can govern ourselves or be governed by monsters, as has always been the case. The Constitution of the US is the one and only time that a government has ever been established with a clear purpose of liberty and benefit for its citizens at large. And here we are.

    • Not so much the U.S. Constitution, I would say, but the Declaration of Independence. Its Preamble is perhaps the most succinct and elegant expression of the highest Enlightenment values. Of course, those values began to be violated as the ink dried on the signer’s signatures.

      • It is kind of odd to write ‘All men are created equal, and endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights… life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,’ when you hold and work slaves, like Mr. Jefferson. Maybe the ability to do that is a special kind of Enlightenment.

        • You apparently are unaware, Anarcissie: All tribes in the world, at that time, practiced slavery: African blacks, Jews, Arabs, Native Indians . . . // So, your focus on Jefferson is grossly, politically self-serving and myopic. // You’re so out-of-step on the matter, you give no care to the massive degree of slavery HERE and N O W!—which degree Glenn Beck likes to point out: far exceeds the extent of slavery when Jefferson had began constructing a system that eventuated ending of it here. -Rick. // P.S. Find and expose and charge those Arabs/Islamists keeping slaves in America, NOW! This scribbler awaits your expression of outrage, and your demand for correction. Please post it here, in Caitlin’s blog. – thanks

          • You’re a hoot, young man!
            The way you dig in almost makes me wonder if C.J, has an alter ego?
            Almost; your tony gives it away, Rock on!

            • Marching through my Seventies is “young”? Thanks, as I embrace that thought for a moment. -Rick // P.S. I’ll bet mine is much larger than yours . . . my library, that is.

        • It’s shortsighted and self-defeating to shit on the statement of sublime truth because the speaker himself is a hypocrite. That all men (and women) are created equal; that they accordingly have certain inherent rights like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that governments are created by the people to achieve equality precisely by securing such rights; and that any government which fails to do so should be altered or abolished and replaced by one which does–this is about the highest level of political thought ever expressed by the human race–so high, in fact, that it has yet to be even remotely implemented by political action. So why throw out the precious baby of idealism with the fetid bathwater of hypocrisy? As the saying goes, is not the latter the homage paid by it to the former?

          • Women and men are INHERENTLY equal? You’re driven by left-instilled EMOTIONAL triggers (( probably public schooling ))—rather to engage the LOGICAL-side of your brain. // Your responses are both vulgar and nonsensical. // Really! Best Regards, -Rick

            • Men and women are inherently equal. Inherent means essentially equal. They are not completely equal for then they would be a man. There are differences but with equal rights.

              • Khatika: “[E]ssentially equal”? // I’m unable to become pregnant and give birth to a wombed baby. // You’re unable to impregnate a woman—naturally, I’m guessing! // I’m able to climb and limb a 70-foot pine tree (( takes upper-body strength most females lack )). // I can piss into the wind standing up. // You can’t do that, can you? // Women and men are far, FAR from “essentially equal” in biological expressions— both mentally and physically (( BTW, on the curve: far more men rate as GENIUS in STEM, even though females now out-grade and out-graduate males—mostly due to 40 years of STRONG anti-male messaging, both in this Marxian popular culture and by those don’t-call-on-males-in-the-classroom FEMINIST/MARXIST teachers—both “male” and female )). // You’ve been programmed to deny REALITY, here. -Rick

                • Let me go dust off my club from the closet and use it to go get me a wife

                  • You’re more clever than that. Try again. -Rick

    • Three million people lived in the United States when the new constitution became law. Only 43,782 were able to cast votes in the first presidential election. By the time Jefferson beat Adams the number had grown only to about 62,000. The Founders’ concept of liberty is related only by a trick of language to what we consider freedom today. To believe an landowning aristocrat like Washington or Monroe thought himself the political or social equal of say a blacksmith would be the greatest of revisionist follies. And the first ten amendments were based on the 1689 English Bill of Rights, some borrowed verbatim from those civil protections enjoyed for nearly a century by the pre-revolutionary colonists.

      • “Psychopaths in Charge”—mean those left-wing oligarchs destroying our world?: Is this richest family on Earth – the Rothschild family – LEFTIST or RIGHTIST? Is Soros leftist or rightists? Is rich man Bezos liberal or conservative. // This 50-years-plus student of social/cultural/political movements – an psychology-based study – is concerned about posters, here, MISTAKINGLY believing our rule-the-world OLIGARCHS are politically/socially/culturally conservative! They’re brain-blind, I suspect; that is, they haven’t much access to historical records and the LOGICAL side of their brain. -Rick

  • Great commentary as always, Caitlin. Ann Coulter made the right call when she predicted Trump’s victory and almost no one else did. I hope she bet plenty on it, because she has no other cause to be happy about her support of Trump. She is a fantasist who sometimes gets a good smack in the face from reality. I am indifferent to immigration as an issue though I like the immigrants I know and have even sponsored individuals for immigration. In 2016 and even before I did say with respect to Trump that no one should trust the anti-immigration credentials of a mass employer of immigrants (including illegal ones) and a serial marryer of immigrants.

    • Right or wrong Ann Coulter says what she thinks. Whether you agree with her or not it is refreshing for someone to speak their mind in an atmosphere of spin and deception.

      • A lot depends on what’s in her mind when she speaks it. Once in awhile it may be refreshing, more often amusing for its absurdity, more often still just bewildering. Coulter is a living illustration of why it’s better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt. That said, she’s not always wrong and she’s far from the most dangerous commentator around.

        • I agree completely. I dont always agree with her but at least i know what she truly believes unlike all the others.

  • “using narrative control to keep the public debating fake nonsense instead of the actual horrible things this administration is doing like imprisoning Julian Assange for journalism, vetoing attempts to save Yemen, inflicting starvation sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, and initiating cold war escalations against two nuclear-armed nations.”

    The implication is that nuclear weapons, unlike Trump, are to be taken seriously.

  • One of the few intelligent pieces I have read about Trump and his presidency. Come to think of it, it is probably the only one. And this is an indictment against our main stream media, which without exception, do no longer report but barely focus on propaganda. Thanks Caitlin!

  • http://www.johndayblog.com/2020/05/origins-of-covid.html
    I’m borrowing too much of this article, but It’s all I can do.
    This is excellent, and we get lied to so much.
    If I’m being disobedient, then at least I’m being civil about it.
    This is the NOT LIES.
    ​ ​On December 9, 2019, long before the world knew anything about it, a video interview took place with one of the key players in the COVID-19 drama, Dr Peter Daszak, President of the EcoHealth Alliance, who inadvertently may have provided indications of its true origin.
    ​ ​Much of that discussion centred around the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS) epidemic of 2002-2004, which was believed to have originated in bats, although civets may have acted as an intermediate host.
    ​ ​While circulating in animals, the SARS virus mutated, acquiring the ability to infect humans, which it was assumed to have done so, infecting workers in a Guangdong, China animal market.
    ​ ​That explanation became the narrative now being promoted by the Chinese Communist Party, the media and some Western scientists to convince the world that COVID-19 was a naturally-occurring outbreak.
    ​ ​Beginning at 27:49, Dr Daszak explains the basis of the naturally-occurring narrative and the collection of over one hundred bat coronaviruses capable of infecting humans, but untreatable with drugs or vaccines. Those coronaviruses are presumed to be stored in Chinese laboratories.
    ​ ​“So, we did a couple of things with it. So, one is around SARS. We focused on SARS coronavirus emerged from a wildlife market. And whilst the first pandemic of this century. So, it’s big event. And, so we started to trace back from the wildlife market, which species carried the virus, that came into those markets. We found that it was bats, not civets, was the original idea. So, we started looking where did they come from. And we went out to southern China. And did surveillance of bats across southern China. And we’ve now found, after six or seven years of doing this, over one hundred new SARS-related coronaviruses, very close to SARS. Some of them get into human cells in the lab. And some of them can cause SARS disease in humanized mouse models. And are untreatable with therapeutic monoclonals [antibodies] and you can’t vaccinate against them with a vaccine.”
    ​ ​At 29:51, Dr Daszak describes bioengineering of those viruses by inserting components of one coronavirus into another.
    ​ ​“Well, I think, coronavirus is a pretty good, I mean, you’re a virologist [the interviewer], you know all this stuff, but the, you can manipulate them in the lab pretty easily. Spike protein drives a lot of what happens with the coronavirus, zoonotic risk. So, you can get the sequence, you can build the protein, and we work with Ralph Baric at UNC [University of North Carolina] to do this. Insert it into a backbone of another virus, and do some work in the lab. So, you can get more predictive, when you find the sequence. You have this diversity. Now, the logical progression for vaccines is, if you are going to develop a vaccine for SARS, people are going to use pandemic SARS, but let’s try to insert these other related and get a better vaccine.”
    ​ ​In 2015, Ralph Baric from the University of North Carolina and Zheng-Li Shi, the “bat woman” from the Wuhan Institute of Virology jointly published a scientific article describing the combination of the receptor-binding spike protein from a newly isolated coronavirus (SHC014) and the “backbone” from SARS-CoV, the coronavirus responsible for the 2002-2003 pandemic.
    ​ ​That experiment produced a novel virus, chimera SHC014-MA15, which showed “robust viral replication both in vitro [cell cultures] and in vivo [animals],” using models adapted to test human infectivity.
    ​ ​The scientific consensus claims that COVID-19, like SARS, originated in bats.
    ​ ​There is conclusive scientific evidence, however, that COVID-19’s receptor binding domain within the spike protein is structurally closest to that of pangolins (scaly anteaters), not bats, and it was the result of a recombination, not convergent evolution.
    Yet, pangolins have been ruled out as the intermediate host for COVID-19.
    ​ ​Even Dr Ralph Baric in a March 15, 2020 interview, beginning at the 27:40 time point, stated unequivocally, that pangolins were not the source of COVID-19:
    ​ ​“Pangolins have over 3,000 nucleotide changes – no way they are the reservoir species [for COVID-19], absolutely no chance.”
    ​ ​It is, therefore, logical to conclude that the recombinant event resulting in a pangolin receptor binding domain within a bat coronavirus backbone must have occurred in a laboratory, in a manner similar to the experiment conducted by Ralph Baric and Zheng-Li Shi in 2015.
    ​ ​Furthermore, COVID-19’s S1/S2 furin polybasic cleavage site, a distinctive feature widely known for its ability to enhance pathogenicity and transmissibility in coronaviruses, does not appear in any of 45 bat, 5 human SARS, 2 civet, 1 pangolin and 1 racoon dog coronaviruses, that have S1/S2 junction structures otherwise identical or nearly identical to COVID-19.
    ​ ​There is no credible scientific evidence that the furin polybasic cleavage site evolved naturally, although the methods for artificially inserting such cleavage sites are well-established.
    https://www.wionews.com/opinions-blogs/tracing-the-origins-of-covid-19-300766

    • ​ ​”There is no credible scientific evidence that the furin polybasic cleavage site evolved naturally, although the methods for artificially inserting such cleavage sites are well-established.”

      You link to a obviously immensely qualified epidemiologist and virologist…a retired US Army hack. How confidence inspiring. Now this shill links to an article I have read before, claiming that: “There is conclusive scientific evidence, however, that COVID-19’s receptor binding domain within the spike protein is structurally closest to that of pangolins (scaly anteaters), not bats, and it was the result of a recombination, not convergent evolution.”
      Now the article published by: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0820-9 clearly states: “Thus, the high-affinity binding of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein to human ACE2 is most likely the result of natural selection on a human or human-like ACE2 that permits another optimal binding solution to arise. This is strong evidence that SARS-CoV-2 is not the product of purposeful manipulation.”
      The other article linked to also states nothing regarding “engineered” virus: “However, there is a segment of high amino acid similarity between human SARS-CoV-2 and a pangolin isolated strain, GD410721, in the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the spike protein, a pattern that can be caused by either recombination or by convergent amino acid evolution driven by natural selection.

      Either the author relied on people too lazy to actually read the articles he cites as evidence or he himself was too lazy to read. In any way, quite a shoddy exercise on citing an article full of shoddy “journalism”. You do your credibility no favour with publishing this trash.

      • Don’t worry, this same guy was telling everyone just a number of weeks ago that this virus was no big deal and daily doses of Vitamin D3 would keep it away and that even if it didn’t that chloraquine was a miracle cure.
        This virus is an interesting test of which humans can distinguish truth from reliable sources, and which humans believe whatever they read on the internet or that a politician like Trump, Johnson or Bolsonaro tells them. The ability to distinguish truth from reliable sources has now become a life-or-death factor that influences future evolution.

  • As many have said before me, the effects you have described represent the use by the powerful of humanity’s instinctive tribalism. We all know about “divide and conquer” (or rule). And many of us see how the control of modern media allows its owners to provoke endless tribal conflict responses in the masses. So, many subgroups focus their emotional gotta-fight responses on each other instead of recognizing their real enemy.

    But we are so immersed in the inherited tribal swamp that a satisfactory-to-the-rulers fraction of the population always fails to notice who the true enemy is. Much less do they see how to throw off those chains. After all, talking this way is offensive to so many who believe in tribal stories that raise us far above the level of animals who have instincts.

    I highly recommend an Evonomics piece by Blair Fix that explores the background of what I’m saying at https://evonomics.com/tribalism-in-science-and-economics/ , even providing experimental evidence. Aside from some need of proofreading (said this proofreader), it is a brilliant exploration of this very human characteristic. If only more people would use logic consistently across the scope of what is known, instead of only in the areas deemed “okay for logic” by their tribes . . . .

    • Mr. Parsons swings his hammer well here. A square blow on the nail drives it home. This is, indeed, the essence of our predicament. We are divided into squabbling tribes of irrational apes, arms flailing, beating chests, and screaming ape-screams of pure hysterical irrationality/emotion, even slinging feces, (each has a handy supply), at one another.

      …..
      …..

      Ape scene, from ‘2001 Space Odyssey’: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=strWmj-vZ88

      …..
      …..

      Look at the apes drinking, (in the ‘Space Odyssey’ scene), before they sense the other tribe’s approach. This is our elemental human nature, the base animal nature of our Human Condition. This is what we ‘naked apes’ do. This is our base human nature. In spite of the capacity to Reason we have evolved, this is how humans behave.

      …..
      …..

      Ms. Johnstone writes:

      “If humanity is to survive, people are going to have to evolve beyond the sticky relationship with mental narrative …. ”

      …..
      …..

      In anthropological terms, I think the ‘evolution’ that Ms. Johnstone evokes is a matter of ‘culture’. People must ‘awaken’ into an awareness of the craziness itself. Is self-awareness a ‘psychological’ term? Is it ‘scientific’, or is it ‘spiritual’, in nature?
      Isn’t it both?

      …..
      …..

      Off to the side, apart from the screaming confrontations of the primitive ape tribes, from an elevated vantage point from which the broadest human existential panorama can be seen, our Enemy tries to remain calm, surveying reality as it unfolds, pulling every lever, adjusting every dial, trying to maintain power and control.

      …..
      …..

      This Enemy itself comprises a ‘tribe’ that is as totally and irrationally self-biased as any other ‘tribe’, (and even more so in some crucial sense), but the Enemy is more culturally sophisticated, and thus is able to quell its own emotions enough to apply Reason to a cold-hearted plan to maintain power and control.

      …..
      …..

      Somewhere there is a ‘Goebbels Committee’. We will likely never know where or how it meets. Mostly digitally, I would assume, assisted by the most advanced satellite communications technology. Do they ever meet face to face? If they do, I’d imagine that it’d be somewhere within less than an hour’s helicopter shuffle from a regional jet port. In some wilderness aerie castle … an overnight shuffle, (with comfortable bed in flight), from anywhere in North America, or even ‘offshore’.

      …..
      …..

      This Goebbels Committee, however/wherever it meets, is being advised by the most brilliant minds our nation produces. The most brilliant minds in mass psychology are “fully advising” in the use of Mass Media to ‘engineer’ the population into compliant form, which means divided into as many “arms flailing”, mutually hateful tribal groups as possible.

      …..
      …..

      A relative handful of people have captured power over the levers of social control. The power of modern Mass Media is the power of social engineering. People are ‘molded’. The Mass Media Barons who rule over us do not merely control what people know, and therefore what we think, and therefore what we believe … They control who people ARE. They control what people want. They manipulate elemental human appetites and desires … They manufacture Desire to be set loose from our most elemental human foibles, including from the deepest darkest “angels of our nature”, (–A Lincoln).

      …..
      …..

      The Enemy knows that its own predicament is desperate. But this Enemy is very capable. It did not garner the power it has by being unaware or unskilled. The Enemy uses the tools they control with consummate skill. They know how to stimulate, and then manipulate, our base animal motivations, instincts, and emotions.

      …..
      …..

      They have us ALL, every ONE of us, exactly where they want us.

      …..
      …..

      Our ‘salvation’ lies for each to find within. We must cross the most basic borderline, beyond which self-awareness begins.

      …..
      …..

      We must, EACH of us, see ourselves from other perspectives besides our own. Self-Awareness in the ONLY path that leads to a solution to our predicament. Self-Awareness requires that we learn the skill of inhabiting other perspectives besides our own. We must “see ourselves as others see us”. (–R Burns)

      …..
      …..

      There is, as yet, no ‘side’ to join to. There is no ‘tribe’ that yet exists that I would join. The insanity of tribal bias, every ‘side’ as ‘crazy’ as any other, surrounds us. We are not merely surrounded by it, but we ourselves, our own ‘spirits’, (our energies of motivation), have been infiltrated by the General Cognitive Insanity the Enemy has succeeded in creating and disseminating throughout all society.

      …..
      …..

      There is as little haven in The Right as in The Left. Any which way we turn, insanely self-centered bigotry assaults us. Reality itself thus becomes very ‘tenuous’. Does anyone really ‘know’ anything ‘true’ anymore? Hasn’t perception of ‘reality’ itself come to require constant judgment between probabilities? The General Insanity consists of severe and generalized cognitive dissonance. No one really ‘knows’, (in the ‘scientific’ sense), what is true.

      …..
      …..

      That must be our first premise. No one, NONE of us, really ‘knows’ what is ‘true’, beyond the scope or her or his own ‘vision’. And most people’s ‘vision’ is being cunningly shaped by the hostile tribal loyalties that are being deliberately propagated by Mass Media.

      …..
      …..

      We have to start with ‘the basics’. No carpenter would set out to build. house without a plan. Truth must be our ‘plan’. We must create something ‘true’.

      …..
      …..

      All terminology must be examined. A common vocabulary of ‘terms’ and basic ‘assumptions’ must be established first.

      …..
      …..

      Right Wing? … Left Wing? … Eh? … Somehow the plane keeps flying … Doesn’t that imply a pilot? Do these terms ‘right’ and ‘left’ really have any useful meaning?

      …..
      …..

      Liberal. Conservative. Individualism. Collectivism. Socialism. Capitalism. So many people mean so many different things when we use so many different terms that meaningful conversations are difficult to carry on. This ‘discombobulating’ of language and terminology itself is a major element of the Generalized Insanity/Cognitive Dissonance.

      …..
      …..

      Gotta go. Daily chores to do … Feed and water the animals, who are growing restless in their coops and pens. Maybe more time later.

      • Helpful commentary here by Caliban on other helpful commentary by Tom. This is precisely what makes this blog shine, as readers take Caitlin’s often astute and incisive observations and run with them.

        “The power of modern Mass Media is the power of social engineering. People are ‘molded’. The Mass Media Barons who rule over us do not merely control what people know, and therefore what we think, and therefore what we believe … They control who people ARE.” Bingo. Our problem has become existential, amply demonstrated by the panic that has suddenly overcome us over the simple fact that death has always been part of life.

        “There is, as yet, no ‘side’ to join to. There is no ‘tribe’ that yet exists that I would join. The insanity of tribal bias, every ‘side’ as ‘crazy’ as any other, surrounds us.” I feel precisely the same way, like a man without a party. How much better I now understand Jesus’ saying that while foxes had holes and birds had nests, he had nowhere to lay his head.

        “Does anyone really ‘know’ anything ‘true’ anymore? Hasn’t perception of ‘reality’ itself come to require constant judgment between probabilities? The General Insanity consists of severe and generalized cognitive dissonance. No one really ‘knows’, (in the ‘scientific’ sense), what is true.” Albert Schweitzer made a similar assessment of the limits of our knowledge, there being more and more to learn, more and more disagreement about it from so-called experts, and less and less time and energy available to the laity to try to sort it out. We won’t even get into Kant and things epistemological.

      • There is an obvious problem with belonging to a completely psychopathic tribe (party, organization, group, gang) however clever they may be and however advanced their technology. I doubt if I have to spell it out.

        • Welcome to the H U M A N condition, E V E R Y O N E !, following – presently – about 200-million years of evolutionary SLINGING of crap. // Nobody here is above the SLINGING thingy, as Caitlin well demonstrates. // Comparatively, you non-Whites live in UTOPIA in the West—as all non-WHITE races/tribes scramble – by hook or by crook – to get into any Western nation-state, but mostly to America. // This scribbler laughs at the new arrivals‘ often-repeated false claim of having greatly sacrificed in leaving their ancestral, (sewer-of-a-culture) homelands. Then, once well-anchoed here (and far too many on the dole), target WHITEY as “evil,” rather than, say, giving to him – in fair exchange? – a simple: T H A N K YOU. -Rick

      • That will probably do for the next few days … Thanks and take it easy.

  • Too true. The political establishment just shovels gobshite to a populace with a hopeless attention span. Morrison in Australia is Trump-Lite in his actions, and in the UK the disgraceful excuses of Dominic Cummings mean that the populace is held in contempt.

  • About your conclusion : “…people are going to have to evolve beyond the sticky relationship with mental narrative which enables establishment spinmeisters to keep an entire nation transfixed by fake stories about a very conventionally evil president instead of pushing for the real changes we’ll need to make if we’re to overcome the existential hurdles looming on our horizon. Learning to distinguish reality from narrative will send the whole prison crashing down.”

    The fact of the matter is that reality is unattainable except for the wise.
    – In Buddhist terms the wise means the Buddha who has pure consciousness (amala consciousness) and has thus freed (him)herself from kharma
    – In Daoist terms the wise is the one whose life is non-action (wu wei) and by surfing on the Dao is free of want and desires.

    The fact of the matter is that the wise are rare to say the least. So “learning to distinguish reality from narrative” is at best a myth that is inaccessible to humanity. So I humbly suggest that your conclusion better recognize that narrative is the human way to approximate reality. Having said that narratives are not equivalent.

    Whatever humanity undertakes is always undertaken by sharing a common narrative. What we need presently is a narrative so powerful that :
    – it repulses the individuals from the power narrative
    – it coheres the individuals in a common vision of the whole of reality
    and it enables us to perceive our interconnection with all particles in the whole.

    It is this type of narrative that is sorely needed in our world today.

      • But isn’t that also a narrative, a story?

      • “The fact of the matter is that the wise are rare to say the least.” This is true from simple observation.
        .
        “The biggest barrier to awakening is the belief that it is something rare.” This is saying that holding onto that belief is a barrier to awakening.
        .
        I don’t see these as mutually contradictory.
        .
        I think an important milestone is when the following are established in the mind:
        1. a belief that awakening is possible for oneself
        2. a decision that awakening is worthy and desirable
        3. a decision to act and to persevere.
        .
        It is because people don’t reach this point that wisdom is rare.
        .
        Once a person comes to that point, wisdom is assured.
        .
        This is how I see it.

        • Hey, all you ANARCHISTS posting here (( this is in response to Glen’s positive/supportive quote about non-hierarchical systems )): That quote demonstrates the default position of all LEFTIST systems: to L I E—in order to persuade that UTOPIAN equality is possible on this plane of existence—that NON-hierarchical systems even are possible (( e.g., erase the natural hierarchy of child/parent, of man/woman, of village-genius/village-idiot, of homosexual male couple’s dominance vs. submission sexuality, of doctor/patient, of floor-sweeper/library-keeper, of . . . )). // THERE’s NOT O-N-E idea in that quote which even hints at any truth, as it’s an absolute fabrication, avoiding u-t-t-e-r R E A L I T Y. // Communists used ANARCHICAL violence in pre-Nazi Germany — and, note, that those nasty “brown shirts” were established by a cabal of pro-communist homosexuals (( this scribbler had documented that in several essay, in the late Nineties, after reading a Jewish historian’s detailed account )) — which caused man-on-the-street Germans’ heavy reprisals against them. -Rick.

      • The biggest misconception is that our thinking molds the times when in actuality it is the times which mold our thinking. We will become aware when our present reality is stripped away and laid bare by war, pandemic, famine, revolution, etc. Take your pick. We will only begin to rebuild after the present system is destroyed.

        • Khatika, I’ve a university researcher’s study, which finding identifies a general inclination in women to create hardship and war—in order to F E E E E L more deeply, to feed that dark place in her brain: REPTILIAN brain. // But I can’t find that study and give you a citation. -Rick // P.S. It’s that same brain-place causing so many women to send marriage proposals to incarcerated serial rapists/killers.

    • Good to have an humble expert in Buddhism and Taoism here … nothing is defiled and … and … and … nothing is pure!

    • I think Caitlin is sometimes coming from a deeply spiritual perspective with awakening as the goal, and sometimes it is a societal perspective with a more earthly goal, and the language sometimes overlaps .
      .
      In this particular article, “learning to distinguish reality from narrative” just means not being trapped by the specific propaganda of our time. As you say, narratives are not equivalent, so a shift towards a more reality-based narrative would be helpful in terms of the survival of this species on this planet. Reality-based here just means a conceptual understanding that is in accordance with appearances arising. “reality” for short.
      .
      I think the second of your points could be relaxed a little. “it coheres the individuals in a common vision of the whole of reality and it enables us to perceive our interconnection with all particles in the whole” is not necessary for a better world. Perhaps “a common vision of life on our planet and the interconnection of our activity with the world we live on/in”? Something like that. As you point out, “reality is unattainable except for the wise”, and the wording you use suggests something unattainable for the unwise (which is most of us).
      .
      One of Caitlin’s goals is to have people awaken to the narrative, not just replace it by another one. If you are saying that we must have a narrative, then is there a narrative we can share that makes us more aware of narrative?
      .
      I am not sure what to make of “So “learning to distinguish reality from narrative” is at best a myth that is inaccessible to humanity.” You quote Buddhism and Daoism, and surely both of these paths teach that awakening is possible (definitely Buddhism does). So “learning to distinguish reality from narrative” is a real thing (or whatever words you want to use). And it’s accessible to humanity.
      .
      Buddhism uses various stories to inform the earnest and help them into a place from which the necessary skills are developed, leading to wisdom. It’s a body of tradition, together with a practice and a sangha to keep it anchored in truth. Narrative is only part of it.

  • Ah, the Buddha Ms Caitlin speaks the unadulterated truth; but there is magic wand or a pill to use on these people that are forever stuck in their illogical thinking. They love their confusion and they wallow in it.

  • I think we’ve got to the point where the narrative is meaningless – pretty much all of the time. It is about making noise, causing distractions, sowing confusion, and keeping as many people as possible as dazed as possible. While all this is going on, the people with the real power (call them what you like, it doesn’t matter) are quietly pursuing their own interests at the expense of whomever and whatever. These people are the ones that really don’t care what happens, who pays, who gets hurt or dies, and how it affects the future.

    • Too true. The political establishment just shovels gobshite to a populace with a hopeless attention span. Morrison in Australia is Trump-Lite in his actions, and in the UK the disgraceful excuses of Dominic Cummings mean that the populace is held in contempt.

  • Trump is both mentally and physically ill. All the signs and symptoms are consistently present in hispublic appearances.

    • Good thing we have Biden to vote for against Trump. He is so much more mentally and physically fit. No where in society do we want 75 to 80 year olds doing almost anything. Why do we seem so determined to have them running our countries.

  • I enjoy your essays as often as I can, and usually find you right on target in terms of political shenanigans. However, one thing I haven’t seen in your comments about Trump is coverage of his environmental record, which is absolutely deplorable. Why do you leave this out? Maybe you’re not reading the relevant reports?
    In these days of climate change, the 6th mass extinction, a pandemic, and the future of life on earth as we know it at stake, this is certainly one of the most important issues – one in which Trump is not just doing nothing, but is actively furthering the cause of death and destruction.

      • Agree. Green Agenda is only a bandaid agenda used to increase control. Not to actually do anything of worth. Politicians could care less about the planet. They simply want to reduce population to slow down the use of resources. Not to rescue the planet.

        • COULD NOT care less, Khatika [[ You’re more clever than that. Try again. ]] -Rick

      • I suppose it’s justifiable to use artistic license to push for a paradigm shift and systemic change. When I have to get in the car and drive somewhere to participate in an Extinction Rebellion event, there’s something inherently wrong with that picture.
        Yet, I feel it’s a mistake to trivialize or ignore the monumental struggle that the environmental movement continually faces in dealing with the Trump administration – an administration that ignores, defunds, and flies in the face of every incremental change for the better that we have fought so hard to make.
        On the personal and local level, we are seeing the results of his administration’s policies, appointments, and executive orders.
        A petroleum pipeline is cutting a wide swath through our countryside, ignoring a fragile karst aquifer that harbors endangered species and supplies drinking water to millions of people, a pipeline which is destroying personal properties and is opposed by virtually every local government and authority – all as a result of Trump, his skewed priorities, and his extreme championing of corporate power at the expense of any social and environmental justice.
        Fanaticisms empowered by the example and excesses of the Trump administration, the ignoring of science, civility, and even sound financial judgement have had a cascade effect through society. We have seen this quite dramatically even on a local level where I live.
        Is a Biden administration and the same old capitalist agenda the solution to the problems we face? Definitely not. Thank you for pointing out his obvious dementia so eloquently. But Trump is Sauron unleashed. The border wall project that you say he doesn’t really care about is in fact ongoing and expanding beyond the Bush years, desecrating sacred sites and indigenous lands, national wildlife refuges, and monuments. Perhaps this doesn’t get as much media attention as his most recent idiotic behaviors and incomprehensible babblings.
        The Trump administration’s flagrant disrespect for facts, purging of any public servants who disagree with him, his miserable score in environmental matters, suspension of federal laws, and support for the most repulsive and nasty elements of society is not a scenario that helps matters. The delusional, aggressive ignorance and irrational schoolyard bully approach he represents is not something to minimize or to try to explain away.

        https://biologicaldiversity.org/w/news/press-releases/new-drone-footage-shows-damage-from-trumps-wall-in-remote-arizona-wildlands-2020-04-28/

        https://biologicaldiversity.org/w/news/press-releases/lawsuit-challenges-trump-administrations-72-billion-transfer-for-border-wall-construction-2020-05-12/

        https://www.borderreport.com/hot-topics/the-border-wall/largest-yet-1-3-billion-contract-for-border-wall-awarded/

        https://www.borderreport.com/top-stories/exclusive-border-wall-surveyors-expected-friday-on-wildlife-refuge-borderline/

      • One book shall completely change your mind, Caitlin—re climate change having any source in human activity: “Not by Fire but by Ice,” by Robert Felix. // Find a copy and read just one page—the last page, which slams the reader with many astronomical event occurring, now, at the same, and causing potentially catastrophic EARTH changes. -Rick

        • ‘At The Same Time,’ I meant. -Rick

    • check this documentary about grren energy directed by Michael Moore and you will learn how we are close to end of civilization

      https://planetofthehumans.com/

  • The USA is run by cannibals hell bent on eating every healthy human alive today that isn’t also a cannibal. End of story anyone who can’t be bothered to save themselves or their families from that fate is hardly worth eating, but will make great tree fertilizer. You’re great Caitlin but like than not a lost cause. They have a saying down south, ‘Aren’t you going to thank me for saving you from that shit eating dog? Pretty much sums up what Americans are all about.

  • Unlike Schroedinger’s cat, Trump can be recycled by putting him back in the box and closing it again,
    after you define his state.
    It’s a fresh go around each and every time.
    Fun for the entire family!

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