Brainy Quote of the Day

Sunday, April 20, 2014

A Nation of Warring Tribes...

See previous: "Weaponized Pseudoscience" yesterday. Quoting part of the post: "we're in the aftermath of 'created realities,' and I fear this self-willed ignorance of science is slowly unraveling our nation." We are the sum of the stories we tell of ourselves, some noble; some salacious; some shameful. Some of them are best left unsaid...
Post 2012 election tweets

This is the eventual culmination of pseudoscience run amok - it metastasizes as a weapon: societal instability reaching for an "ideal" that never existedThe rude, reintroduction of  pseudo social science hack Charles Murray as adviser to Gregg Abbott in Texas politics; the so-called "debate" on climate change; the age of the universe (6,000 versus 13.8 billion) and evolution versus "intelligent design" are not designed to enlighten: they are to evade, obfuscate inducing ignorance, an effective method of control. When science and critical thinking skills are properly taught, you ask questions of authority, and authoritarians don't want that. They'd rather you memorize a Bible verse (many they've never read, but their marketing departments find useful in their machinations); they'd rather you repeat a Jingoism/slogan/talking points - thinking is out of the question since it will begat questions. This is no better than the "conspiracy theories" that bloviators use to whip their audiences on right-leaning AM talk radio to frenzied mania, high profits and a spot on network news.

These are the "chickens coming home to roost" of the "Southern Strategy," this is what dog-whistle politics reaps after it's sown in the wind. This is when your ratings are dependent on making everyone afraid of "the other," and that larger-than-life other happens to occupy 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. "I want my country back": the 'good old days' for some; the bad ones for everyone else that they don't give a damn about. Meanwhile, we have two years to obsolescence on the global stage when "Made in America" becomes a rarefied artifact.

Never mind that human life originated in Africa; that the oldest known footprints of Homo Erectus happens to have been found in Kenya. It makes us all African, this expressed malady over class, place and pigmentation a form of melanin-envy and self-loathing.

Never mind that hate is not an election-winning strategy and that Karl Rove waisted a lot of billionaire's money trying to throw the election from "We the People" to the oligarchs.

We worship money as a national deity, and no other god really. We're supposedly divided between "makers and takers" and the self-labeled makers seem to have no problem taking another tax cut. Their recipe for job creation has so far equaled Marie Antoinette's famously attributed comment (actually by Maria Theresa 100 years before in Spain): "let them eat cake." There is no room at the oligarch's Inns, mansions, wealth seminars or dinner tables.

Princeton and Northwestern now says the previous experiment in self-governance is over, and is at its inevitable conclusion: we are an oligarchy, well before Putin could reestablish it in Russia. It explains why the authoritarians here so admire his veracity; his bare-shirted cowboy diplomacy - to hell he might cause World War III:

Cliches like, "itchy trigger finger" and "tall in the saddle" and "riding off or on into the sunset." Cliches like, "Get off of my planet by sundown!" More so than cliches like, "he died with his boots on." Marine tough the man is. Bogart tough the man is. Cagney tough the man is. Hollywood tough the man is. Cheap steak tough. And Bonzo's substantial. The ultimate in synthetic selling: A Madison Avenue masterpiece ? a miracle ? a cotton-candy politician...Presto! Macho! (Gil-Scott Heron, "B Movie")

THIS IS A MENTAL DISORDER and psychological warfare foisted writ large on the American public through echo chambers and so-called "think tanks" under the clever auspices of "maintaining traditional values" while in the full spirit of Orwellian doublespeak, annihilating  them. On the day Jared Lee Loughner was sentenced to 7 consecutive life sentences plus 140 years (gees), we'd be mindful that this information age may be overloading weaker minds (he was told "don't retreat: reload" and that he did to disastrous effect). Thus, birth certificates in short or long form; Harvard transcripts and passports demanded by bloviating reality-show hosts that could spend $50 on a good toupee versus 5 million on an empty stunt are irrelevant when you've already a made-up mind that what facts don't agree with your skewed worldview will be judged false. Fear is a political motivator, but moribund when you actually try to run a country on it as well as magical thinking. It worked really well up to 2008 (being facetious), and I'm not inclined to see if repeated, it will self-correct in 2014 or 2016. I end paraphrasing Albert Einstein's observations on the nature of insanity, and quoting verbatim Nietzsche:

“Sometimes people don't want to hear the truth because they don't want their illusions destroyed.”

― Friedrich Nietzsche

TPM: Harder to Handle; More on the Fox Effect, Josh Marshall

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