Wednesday, June 28, 2006

If I Only Had a Plane



Strawman, going straight to the devil
Strawman, going straight to hell - Lou Reed

It hasn't been a month since Salon's Farhad Manjoo declared case closed on 2004 election fraud. (The abbreviated argument, via Sadly, No: "There may have been widespread election fraud in 2004, but what really gets me steamed is the zany conspiracy theory that it might have affected the election.”) But he's already back to slay another conspiracy dragon with "The 9/11 deniers." And yes, that's the implication: to dispute the finding of the Kean commission is to make yourself a fellow traveller with Holocaust revisionists. (Though truthfully, we need to be careful about what company we keep.)

Is Gerald Posner glancing anxiously over his shoulder? The 28 year old Manjoo seems to be making a run for his title of Alpha Debunker. His prejudicial deference to authority, his selection and deselection of evidence, his strawmen and his sarcastic disdain for contrary thought should grease his way to great success. And conventional wisdom's eager-to-please houseboy has already come a long way since his 2000 graduation, "with apparently no advanced degrees in social science or political science."

Predictably enough, Manjoo's representative text of 9/11 conspiracy is the flypaper Loose Change, which he calls "something like a film version of a highly contested Wikipedia page." (Suggesting a certain shallowness of thought Manjoo's wiki fixation runs deep, as demonstrated by his cut and paste blog, What I Learned on Wikipedia Today.) Manjoo's critique of Dylan Avery's work is almost wholly borrowed from Jim Hoffman's "Sifting Through Loose Change", and though he credits Hoffman, he also studiously ignores Hoffman's far more credible case for conspiracy.

Following Salon's RFK Jr hit piece, Bob Fitrakis wrote that "Manjoo is much like the Tobacco Institute or the people they used to send around to show us film strips about 'Readi Kilowatt' back during the Cold War. They are individuals who have developed a cottage industry as debunkers and denialists. And in a society famed for Know Nothings an anti-intellectualism, of course an opportunist like Manjoo would come forward."

True. And much the same could be said of Dylan Avery. The 9/11 movement remains a creature of the general culture that rewards style and flash over substance and reflection. The dumbed down is raised up, and a scattershot of distortions and faulty assumptions is too often mistaken for argument. (Avery even shares Manjoo's wikipedia fixation, citing it with authority in Loose Change.)

Debunkers and disinformation artists aren't always found in the alphabet soups of intelligence agencies. Often, they're just working for themselves, trying to establish their names in whatever fields they've staked out by launching them into the prevailing winds. And frequently, Looking Out for Number One means you've got the Company's back whether you know it or not. Manjoo and Avery deserve each other. Now, how about the rest of us?

75 Comments:

Anonymous Quanah said...

Salon.com is a soothing balm for America's liberal bourgeouisie, with its veneer of intellectual-lite, complete with damaged souls like the alcoholic who dispenses his nuggets of hard-fought wisdom in the form of advice and the no-nothing sports writer who refuses to acknowledge Ichiro Suzuki as one of this generation's great baseball players because all he does is "slap singles all over the field." (Tell it to Mendoza, pal. Or to all those Dominican and American sluggers who played in the World Baseball Classic.) In their world, Bush is to fault for everything and once "we" beat them, fair and square, America will once again regain its promise and allure.

Thanks, Jeff, for reminding us of what a bunch of strawmen these losers really are.

6/28/2006 08:45:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

6/28/2006 09:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Devil's Advocate said...

My goodness, Jeff, you sound almost... err... annoyed by poor Farhad Manjoo.

Is it -- maybe -- because salon.com is a much more popular destination on the web than rigorous intuition? Or is it because Farhad Manjoo has pointed out that 99.9% of all conspiracies out there are total and complete bunk? Including, I have to say, the satanic cult of child rapists which is the bread and butter of rigorous intuition?

But enough nasty snapping at you, poor struggling canadian writer. Here is some food for thought...

1. In any other country in the world, receiving a PDB (Presidential Daily Intelligence Briefing) with the title of: "Bin Laden determined to strike the US" would be cause for concern. Even alarm. But not in the USA.

2. In any other country in the world, events like 9/11 would have sent heads rolling in the gutter, starting with the heads of the difference intelligence services, and proceeding upward from there. But not in the USA.

3. In any other country in the world, starting a useless war against an almost defenceless country, under the false pretext of "Weapons of Mass Destruction" would have provoked the population to either riot or eject the President at the first opportunity. Or both. But not in the USA.

It reminds me of these famous quotes by some famous people:

"The government consists of a gang of men exactly like you and me. They have, taking one with another, no special talent for the business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office."
-- H. L. Mencken

"The typical American of today has lost all the love of liberty, that his forefathers had, and all their disgust of emotion, and pride in self- reliance. He is led no longer by Davy Crocketts; he is led by cheer leaders, press agents, word mongers, uplifters."
-- H. L. Mencken

"The worst crimes were dared by a few, willed by more and tolerated by all."
-- Tacitus

"The cure for the evils of democracy is more democracy."
-- H.L. Mencken

"America is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to degeneration without the usual interval of civilization."
-- George Clemenceau.

And, with this, I exit, stage left.

6/28/2006 10:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, if the Devil's lawyer says that 99.9% of conspiracies are bunk, without any supporting evidence, then it must be true. Especially if he backs it up with Mencken quotes.

In defense of Salon, they did post an 8-page story about how the family who owns the Ringling Bros. Circus CONSPIRED to subtly derail a woman author from writing about the family because they were afraid she would uncover several scandals.

Their methods were really creepy too. They had someone hire her to right a book about something else just to avoid having her right about them. They were so subtle it was frightening.

She had no clue about any of this until a disgruntled operative for the family came forward and told her about it after he filed suit in federal court against the family for some grievance.

Look it up on Salon, it's worth the read.

You'd be surprised what you can find in the oddest of places. Kind of like finding the call-boy scandal on the front page of the otherwise frequently worthless Washington Times.

The popular capacity for denial never ceases to amaze me.

Here's some food for thought:

Your parents, if they are Christians, will lie to you when you are a child and tell you that Santa Claus exists and that he is the source of your presents.

If you try to investigate this independently by staying up late, they usher you off to bed.

However, if you are persistent and catch them in the act, they will admit they were lying to you the entire time.

And then there are the rubes who need to be told by their more enterprising peers. Of course, some still don't believe it and run home crying to their parents.

So I guess you could say we have issues with myths and the truth in this country.

6/28/2006 11:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW - Sorry about the hominyms.

6/28/2006 11:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW 2 - Oh, and let's not forget how mad people get if you debunk the Santa Claus myth to their children. It's like you were raping them or something.

6/28/2006 11:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW 3 - Here are the links to the salon stories:

Part I

http://archive.salon.com/news/feature/2001/08/30/circus/index.html

The Greatest Vendetta on Earth
Why would the head of Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey hire a former top CIA honcho to torment a hapless freelance writer for eight years?

[I like how they describe her as hapless. She's a VICTIM, not someone in a screwball comedy.]

Part II

http://archive.salon.com/news/feature/2001/08/31/circus/index.html

Send in the clowns
How Ringling Bros. minions tormented a freelance writer for eight years.

[Well, at least she's not hapless anymore. This and other stories, like the Dyncorp pedophilia stories, redeem Salon.]

6/28/2006 11:23:00 AM  
Anonymous buck fush said...

you have to admitt the slow mo replay of the "disapearing plane" shows just how fake the footage was. Google ufo @ WTC some cool footage from a guy who recorded 5 hrs of CNN on the day of the attacks. when he looked at no hidden footage he saw all kind of crazy orbs and reflections This reminds me of an essay from Gerard Holmgren:


Imagine that "Mr. 9/11 Truth"* is prosecuting in court. He is asked to provide evidence of the defendants guilt and he replies "The WHO and WHY behind a criminal conspiracy are much more important than the HOW -- the method used to enact the conspiracy. Whether a criminal murders someone with a knife or a gun is much less important than the fact that the crime has been committed, and much less important than the identity of the criminal and the motive for the crime."

The judge looks at him quizzically, and says ""Mr. 9/11 Truth", first we need to establish the facts of the event, in order to determine that the defendant is in fact guilty of the crime at all.

To which Mr. 9/11 Truth replies that this "is entirely peripheral to the core issues of the event, which are: 1. Who did it? 2. Why did they do it? 3. What do they intend to do next? 4. What is the endgame they have in mind? *HOW* they did it is relatively a minor detail"

To which the judge replies "Case dismissed".
----------------

There is also the matter of who "they " are.

"Mr. 9/11 Truth" presumably restricts "they" to the Govt – and of course Israel.

However, the fact that the media showed us cartoons of fictional planes flying into buildings means that the definition of "they" must extend to include the media in a generic sense.

"Mr. 9/11 Truth" suggests that this crucial piece of evidence should be ignored, thus allowing the media to get off free.

The only way to identify **all** of the perps is to present **all** of the facts about how it was done – to the extent that we able to, of course.

We have established as irrefutable fact that the media was instrumental in selling the psy op through the method of airing cartoons and passing them off as news – in a premeditated manner.

This of course still falls short of identifying the exact individuals who perpetrated the planes hoax, who in the media was genuinely fooled themselves, and who was complicit after the fact. But it does establish the media – in a generic sense – as being equal partners with the govt –- in a generic sense.

More importantly, the exposing of this hoax tells the ordinary person a lot about how the world actually works. The media is not just distortion. It is often total fiction, cartoons presented as reality. Jurassic Park, but just with a "news" label on it rather than a "movie" label on it.

"Mr. 9/11 Truth"'s attitude is equivalent to suggesting that as long as we manage to prosecute the guy who grabbed the cash from the vault, then who cares who placed the explosive to blow the door, and drove the getaway car?

Furthermore, "Mr. 9/11 Truth" suggests that we should deny the fact that there even was an explosion to blow the door or anyone driving a getaway car. We start and finish the story with the guy who grabbed the cash out of the vault, and angrily dismiss any notion of an explosion or a getaway car on the basis that it will distract from discussion about why the guy grabbed the cash, and what he will do next.

Is "Mr. 9/11 Truth" seriously suggesting that we could build an indictable case – legal proof of who organized four events (plane crashes) - when in fact these events never happened ?

We only need to look at the early emperor's clothes research to see how this strategy is doomed to failure from a legal perspective.

Let's review.

Working on the assumption that the plane crashes happened basically as per the official story, TENC produced a very tight **deductive** case that the air force was stood down to allow the planes to reach their targets.

At the time, many people, including me, thought that this had basically cracked the case from a public information POV, but knew that it did not present a legally admissible case.

Why? Because you can't convict in court a particular individual of standing down the airforce on the basis of deduction alone that somebody high up must have issued such an order. You actually have to produce the stand down order or overwhelming witness testimony from people in the military that they were ordered to stand down and who issued the order.

And so many of us , believing that a stand down had happened, thought that it was only a matter of time before somebody spilled the beans and started a trail which led to the order itself.

It never happened.

Why? Because you can't find an order which was never issued. And the reason that one was never issued is because there weren't any off course planes and therefore no need to issue a stand down order. TENC did a brilliant deduction job, but unfortunately, based it on a fundamentally flawed assumption to begin with.

So what use was their work ?

From a legal POV – absolutely zilch.

But from the POV of general public education, its value was immense, in that exposed the first layer of lies and inspired a lot of people to start looking deeper.

Which shows that something can be legally useless, but still valuable in terms of public education.

Then Gary North blew the hijacker story open. Which got us all thinking about remote controlled planes. Why was legal proof of a remote control program for the planes never brought to light?

Because that didn't happen either. Because there weren't any planes.

So what use was North's work from a legal POV ?

Just like TENC's – nothing. But from a public education POV, very valuable because it moved us one step closer.

And then Meyssun and WF discovered between them that there weren't any plane crashes.

This can be proven in court as we have the video and the forensic proof to show that it is irrefutable.

The problem is – you can't indict "the Govt" or "the media" in a generic sense. You have to charge specific individuals. So although we have now reached the stage of proving what happened and who was guilty in a generic sense, we are still short of evidence for specific indictments.

But we are a step closer at least now know why any attempted indictment of Myers or Cheney or Bush for standing down the air force would have been laughed out of court.

But more importantly , we have learned from a common sense POV that the corruption of the system is so massive that no one is ever going to be indicted for this in the traditional way.

Along the path of this discovery journey, there have been twin aims. One has been to indict the guilty. The other has been for public education, even if indictments are never achieved.

It is now apparent that the first aim will most likely never happen, because the depth of the conspiracy is greater than most of us could have imagined back in Nov 2001. The legal system is just as in on it as the media.

But that does not invalidate the second aim.

Would anyone here argue that the high level of awareness that JFK was an inside job has been an utterly worthless exercise ? Just because no-one was actually indicted for it? That we might as well have everyone believing the official story ? That it's indictment or nothing ?

That if no one is going to be indicted for TWA 800, then we might as well let everyone believe the official story ?

So the no planes proof raises the level of public awareness – a valuable result in its own right, plus it brings us closer to indictments, should such a thing ever be possible, something which I very much doubt.

In some ways the opening up of an obvious schism between what people know to be true and what is officially acknowledged and acted upon is extremely valuable

6/28/2006 11:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

That is so damn true about the Santa Claus thing....and the Tooth Fairy. I'm ashamed that my wife and I have facilitated it with our two children. I am trying to convince my wife that we need to level with them now, or risk losing their trust, or worse, indoctrinating them into a society wrought with lies and deceit.

Jeff, I know you have recently had a child. I urge you not to make the same mistake. It's a trap. Once you go the Santa Claus route, you're ensnared.

Wikipedia's a favorite of the false skeptics over at IIDB. Everybody needs a Bible, and that's the Skeptic's/Atheist's Bible. The funny thing is, the majority of the dipsticks over there are every bit as religious as the bible thumpers they deride and chastize. Bunch of hypocrits, if you ask me.

6/28/2006 12:00:00 PM  
Anonymous prunes said...

I'm ashamed that my wife and I have facilitated it with our two children. I am trying to convince my wife that we need to level with them now, or risk losing their trust, or worse, indoctrinating them into a society wrought with lies and deceit.

Oh, it's not so terrible, and not nearly so shattering when kids find out as you might think. They already know, but they don't intentionally differentiate between "imaginary time" and "real time" like we do (and the implications of THAT...)

I think the best way to tell them is to explain that Santa Claus is a game that parents and kids like to play together. Present this as a clarification of fact, not a dramatic tearful revelation. Also be sure to tell them NOT to spoil the joke for "littler kids", they like to feel grown-up.

Just my off-topic opinion.

6/28/2006 12:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good to see you're back on the 9/11 trail, Jeff. I just got the link to new posts today.

I strongly recommend this new site to all Rigorous Intuition readers:

http://www.truthmove.org

Taking a wider scope of a "Truth Movement," we cover a wide range of deception, and underreported stories, including assassinations, false flags, etc. We are also very much focused on the psychological aspects of social control and awakening.

See here our pages on cognitive dissonance and optimism:

http://www.truthmove.org/psychology/cognitive.html

http://www.truthmove.org/psychology/optimism.html

6/28/2006 12:45:00 PM  
Anonymous nomo said...

Ah, so there were no planes? Nothing really did happen? What's next, you gonna tell us there never were any WTC towers either? And thus, no controlled demolition either, because if there were no buildings, there were no explosions either! Brilliant! Love it!

6/28/2006 01:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

prunes,

I disagree. It's a deceitful indoctrination, and I wish I would have viewed it this way 7 years prior. We're going to level with them, and we will do it in a way that covers all of the issues.

There are so many problems with the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus.

1.) Many children will find out the truth from their peers, rather than their parents, thus diminishing the bond with the parent and replacing them, somewhat, with the peer group as the source of truth and knowledge.

2.) What about the the disparity of generosity from Santa and the Tooth Fairy? Some of my daughter's frineds are getting $100 Bills from the Tooth Fairy. My daughter gets a $5 Bill which I think is ridiculous and exhorbitant.

3.) These legends, myths and traditions have been usurped for ignoble purposes. It's not only an indoctrination into lies and deceit, but also a prolonged initiation right for the Church of Consumerism/Materialism.

6/28/2006 01:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

nomo said...
Ah, so there were no planes? Nothing really did happen? What's next, you gonna tell us there never were any WTC towers either? And thus, no controlled demolition either, because if there were no buildings, there were no explosions either! Brilliant! Love it!


Yeah, no kidding. This whole debate is becoming so completely absurd and insane. It's exactly what they want. Keep debating each other whilst we slap some more Jeff Gannon cock up your collective asses.

Most of us here, if not all, can agree that the Official Story is a crock of shit, and that 911 was orchestrated by the PTB. No reason to argue any further. There will be no indictments. There will be no trials. There will be no convictions.

We have to combat this in other ways, and move on, and by move on I don't mean vote the Dems in office and then settle back comfortably in our Lazyboys right smack in the middle of Bloggerville Square.

6/28/2006 01:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's the difference between Apathy and Ignorance?

"I don't know and I don't care!"

WEW - Give Too Much

6/28/2006 01:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

from the Beg to Differ department:

Devil's Advocate, you wrote:

"1. In any other country in the world, receiving a PDB (Presidential Daily Intelligence Briefing) with the title of: "Bin Laden determined to strike the US" would be cause for concern. Even alarm. But not in the USA."

WELL.......Not in the U.K. either, whose MI6 shares all intel reports with CIA/NSA.

"2. In any other country in the world, events like 9/11 would have sent heads rolling in the gutter, starting with the heads of the difference intelligence services, and proceeding upward from there. But not in the USA."

NOT in the U.K. either (throw in 7/7 to your premise)

"3. In any other country in the world, starting a useless war against an almost defenceless country, under the false pretext of "Weapons of Mass Destruction" would have provoked the population to either riot or eject the President at the first opportunity. Or both. But not in the USA."

NOT in the U.K. or Australia, the two primary members of the "Coalition of the Killing", where Tony Blair and John Howard were re-elected by comfortable margins after "mission accomplished."

What IS it about the English speaking world, hmmmmmmmmmn?

You Canucks speak French, right?

6/28/2006 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger Brook said...

lets get back on track. i love what jeff writes b/c it's about Manjoo and the state of "alt.journalism." Manjoo is a hack in the worst sense and jeff makes this point in spades. it's a hack subject position of the alt press to try and debunk anything and everything that disputes dominant myth. it's practiced everywhere and Manjoo is the current poster child for this intellectual illness.

as an aside, i posted a link to this at DU and within seconds it was moved to the September 11 torture chamber. we MUST separate these issues. jsut b/c this piece references 9-11, it's seen by the alt.press as some sort of conspiracy IN ITSELF. ain't that sumthin?

as if 9-11 were Manjoo's only huckleberry. election fraud is his sweetness. so, the reducto ad absurdum is:

9-11 is bunk.
therefore Manjoo is sterling.
therefore election fraud is bunk.
and anything else Manjoo decides to focus his 28 years of wisdom on.

bleh, i say.

6/28/2006 02:39:00 PM  
Blogger reprehensor said...

"Look, I appreciate the careful attention to detail that people like Manjoo apply when they criticize 9/11 skeptics like Dylan Avery… but where the hell is this scrutiny when it comes to the Bush Administration’s official narrative of 9/11 which has the consistency of Swiss Cheese?"

"Et tu, Salon?"
http://www.gnn.tv/B16343

Manjoo was preceded last week by John Gravois at the "Chronicle of Higher Education"

Mobbing 9/11; Gravois as Screech Owl (P.1)
http://www.gnn.tv/B16149

Mobbing 9/11; Gravois as Screech Owl (P.2)
http://www.gnn.tv/B16163

--------

What's Manjoo gonna unsuccessfully tackle next?

Fraudulent stories about Fearless Leader's National Guard service?

Please! Save us!

6/28/2006 03:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Steven Lagavulin said...

I always think it's interesting to see people with no power or wealth argue strongly against "conspiracy theorists". I suppose it's the same hubris that leads armshair-quarterbacks to imagine they know how to coach a professional game.

I mean we actually hear every day about people, companies, organizations and such who openly conspire to bring certain events about. Why then do we find it in any way dubious that some number of them would also secretly conspire to bring certain events about?

I've been in the conspiratorial seat myself with a non-profit I sit on the board of. A group of us felt we knew what was best for the organization, but a small number of people were adamantly against it. So we sought rather secretly to consolidate our supporters, and to undermine the arguments of our detractors, and we pursued our agenda anyway quite "clandestinely" to hide it from the naysayers. And all this was amongst a group of highly respectable people! In fact it was all quite ordinary--very prosaic really--although it made me feel terrible.

Politics itself is just an amplified version of this same game. Politics is professional conspiring. It's not even called "conspiring"...it's called "politics" or "playing politics". Heck, our most massively funded government defense agencies are patently entrusted with enacting subversive events against other people and nations who don't support their cause.

And it's the same in the business world, which is why you almost never find individuals with real ethics in either Big Politics or Big Business anymore. They find the whole thing far too distasteful to get involved in.

That's also why we suffer from a dearth of real leadership in our global economy. The trunk of our cultural tree is largely gutted of people with strong character and vision. Those people have mostly gone underground in various ways.

There's obviously no shame in trying to deny a particular conspiracy theory, but to even hint that conspiracy theorists should be discredited is a patent admission to foolishness of one kind or another. I guess it's as Jeff has pointed out in the past: the only real crime in this regard is not making your conspiracy too audacious to be believed.

6/28/2006 03:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

.
Notes from the Juggernaut Church of Consumerism & Materialism:

Perhaps you know that in the U.S. and England, fully one half of all retail sales for the entire year occurs during the Christmas shopping season. Most retailers can’t even show an annual profit until the day after Thanksgiving. Without this to drive the engine, these economies would quite literally collapse. And it is getting to be more that way in Canada, France, and the rest of Europe. And, minus Christmas, the Trojan Santa Clause is being wheeled into muslim countries as well. Witness:

In the muslim world, during the twenty-nine nights of the month of Ramadan, drinking (water, juice, milk, coffee, etc.) and eating are allowed only after sunset, and before the first light of dawn (about a ½ hour prior to sunrise). It was originally intended to be, and it mostly still is, an interesting time of bonding and increased piety, peacefulness and prayer, charity and kindness, deepening of friendships and deepening of one’s faith, if one is not faithless. And there are not a lot of faithless, nominal muslims, though obviously there are some.

There is beautiful melodic chanting of the Qur’an sung almost continually in many of the mosques during the day, and from midnight until dawn. From the dustiest village to largest inner city megalopolis, the prayerful music which is so hauntingly and wistfully beautiful comes from all directions, overlapping, and wending its ways inside and around various songs and calls.

It gives it an air a bit like the Christmas season with its Christmas carols, only it feels more genuinely brotherly and sisterly without all of the frantic buying and consumptive frenzy of the yuletide. There is an inward journey to parallel and enhance the outward solidarity and intensified communality that comes with the shared sacrifice of the fasting - which has as one of its original intents to deepen empathy, especially with and for those people who are without food, money, and so on.

One of the duties during Ramadan is to give charity, or Zakat. One is supposed to distribute 2.5% of one’s earnings from the previous year to those most in need. If you haven’t earned anything, you are free from the obligation, and can reasonably expect to recieve zakat from your muslim “brothers and sisters.” It is a very different kind of giving than that at Christmas, coming instead mostly from those who have and going to those who do not, or who have less, or least. And there is no stigma in the receiving, rather great joy and gratitude with prayers of thanks being offered. And the majority of the zakat is given anonymously to those who receive it. You give me your money to distribute and I give you mine, for example.

Another very lovely part of Ramadan is the evening meal after sunset, called fitr, pronounced f’toor, which literally means “breakfast.” So people talk about where or with whom are you going to have breakfast? Meaning ‘dinner tonight.’

And these dinners are a time to share and visit and eat incredible food. Then people go to mosque at midnight and sing special, utterly beautiful musical forms of the Qur’an. Some keep on singing all night. Many more people return to sing before dawn. It is really an amazing experience for a month. With it comes a kind of flipping of day and night.

As some people, in addition to going to mosque, or in lieu of it, also stay up late in the cafés and drink tea and espresso at midnight, or til 2 or 3 in the morning, so then, between the devotional singers and the prayers, and the mild carousing (a few people do both), nobody gets much work done the next day. So, for the entire month of Ramadan, all schools, businesses, gov’t offices, et cetera, are on shortened schedules. Everything starts later in the day and ends earlier, and only about half the usual hours, or amount of work, gets done.

In my opinion, this is one of the reasons why the muslim world is behind the rest of the world economically - Ramadan. One month out of the year almost everything comes to a near screeching halt. Except for singing and giving thanks, and having good meals and staying up late with your friends. Not really a bad tradeoff at all, from my view.

But contrast that with the shopping season of Thanksgiving through New Years, when everyone is madly running about, working overtime, and buying like crazy. You can see how one cultural practice leads to cultivation of the self in relation to the Divine, and to one’s friends and family, and the other is more about keeping the economy going full tilt.

Interestingly, sadly, increasingly, in some muslim countries, this very materialism has crept into the Eid al Fitr, the three day holiday at the end of the month of Ramadan. People now are pressured by newspaper and tv advertising, and glossy mailings of brochures from stores, to buy presents for their families, most particularly to buy things for their children during this holiday. It has created a major pressure of expectation. There is quite a frenzy, although only in larger cities at this point, of a kind of forced buying of especially toys for kids, but also of electronic appliances, in this period of a couple of days.

You see in a few places, in certain stores and neighborhoods where there is more money and a lesser degree of poverty, crowds of fathers with their kids, also couples and whole families, pushing and shoving to find and buy generally shoddy, overpriced toys made in China, just to have something to hand over, in keeping with the advertising-generated expectations. It is pretty sickening and worrying, and very un-islamic, if I may say so.

It’s a disheartening push of destructive imperialism, resulting in the cynical corruption of traditional cultures, clearly undermining the original purpose of the fast to build empathy. And it is the going without water which is by far the hardest part. Especially in the scorching summer. Try it from dawn to sundown, for just one day. Without the support of a like-minded community it is very difficult to do, impossible for most people to do by choice. A cohesive community where everyone looks out for everyone else, that is the original purpose of the fast of Ramadan. Not pushing and shoving in a crowded store to buy over-priced useless, unwanted junk that will be broken tomorrow.

But it is not just about frantic buying and wasting of money for shoddy trinkets among the poor, but also the buying of big-ticket luxury items among the better healed. Now most large merchants in muslim countries during Ramadan heavily advertise and promote sales of large home appliances, from fridges and stoves, to stereos and plasma screen tv’s. And for the moderately well off it is flatware, cookware, clothes and crockery, alongside fancily bound Qur’ans for the more pious, or one’s who wish to think they are so.

In some places, you now see pictures of Santa Clause in store windows at this time, elves, and even “Christmas trees”, which of course really represent a Druidic pagan tradition of mid-winter. So very bizarre, really, for this to be imposed upon a muslim feast celebrating the revelation of the Qur’an, which, in the muslim lunar calendar, rarely occurs in early or late winter - no less near the solstice - but takes place only in spring, summer, or fall in 25 out of every 33 years. Not even in keeping with Xmas’s mid-winter pagan roots!

Maybe the global merchants will try and morph the muslim Santa buying scam into a Jesus’ birthday celebration for muslims, for whom Isa/Jesus is a beloved and highly regarded prophet, second only to Muhammad. And Jesus enjoys a uniquely elevated status for muslims. Jesus/Isa is designated by the Qur’an as not the Son, but the “Spirit of God.”

No doubt the drones of corporate globalisation and their pimping profiteers are hard at work on the problem as I write this.

You may have heard of Samuel P. Huntington. He is a Harvard professor whose thesis on the so-called “Clash of Civilizations” has helped fuel the neocon war-mongering in the past 30 years. He wrote a cover story for Foreign Policy magazine in 2004, about the “threat” of Latino culture in America, their “refusal to assimilate”. The cover layout was of a Latino pledging allegiance to the U.S. flag, with the headline sobriquet: “José Can You See?”

One of the supposedly damning data Huntington prominently cited in this article as evidence of “their” fundamental difference from “us”, is that Latino, or “Hispanic” families in the U.S. spend more money on children’s clothing than they do on personal electronic devices.

He said this was a dangerously deviant practice or trend!

One has to wonder, how could this constitute a “threat” to the PTB? Because it limits the venues for Latinos to receive propaganda? Because they want to attend to their children’s actual needs, rather than help make them into doublethinking ADD automatons? Could it be?

“For more than a century, ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as 'internationalists' and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure - one world, if you will. If that's the charge, I stand guilty." David Rockefeller, "Memoirs" (autobiography) 2002.

Now click the heels of your ruby slippers together and repeat after me:

"It's not a conspiracy. It's not a conspiracy. It's not a conspiracy."

6/28/2006 03:32:00 PM  
Anonymous prunes said...

These legends, myths and traditions have been usurped for ignoble purposes. It's not only an indoctrination into lies and deceit, but also a prolonged initiation right for the Church of Consumerism/Materialism.

Studying history reveals both the mythic/magical origins of Santa AND the heretical origins of consumerism/materialism as a religious belief, e.g. Comte and the Positivist Church.

I hadn't really thought about it from this point of view; you have a very good point!

6/28/2006 03:39:00 PM  
Blogger foist lastus said...

Whats in a name?
Manjoo = Man jew
His response : its all bunk go back to sleep little robots

6/28/2006 03:59:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A website that offers up alien chtulu octopus men as the puppet masters behind the rise of the Bush Cabal really shouldn't push too hard on Avery and Loose Change's credibility.

Criminy.

6/28/2006 04:05:00 PM  
Blogger ericswan said...

Anonymous..one of the best posts I've read in quite some time. Wish you would put some lipstick on that pig.

Parental guidance on issues of tooth fairy.. make sure you dole out more for a good report card..share the wealth..little people have needs too

on Santa.. It's a "good thing" if the parents don't agree on how to handle this situation. In my household, I chose to "disclose" the truth. It has left me isolated and alone. So much the better.

Loose Change..911 is an anecdote. I think we move on. Let it stand as a question mark and let it remind us to question.

Manjoo vs. R.I.. never heard of em..

conspiracy theorists and their counterpart..see WMR...

Jeff...I will be posting your link around and about.

6/28/2006 05:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Karl Christian Rove (born December 25, 1950)

Pimp your Santa.......

6/28/2006 11:23:00 PM  
Anonymous Richard said...

Yes, yes, yes....let's take those Xmas lights out of our kids eyes. Give them a nice big push into being as miserable as we are with that huge fucking reality fist we've all got shoved up our asses.
Right.
Good plan.

Then they can join us here as we babble on about space aliens & satanic rapists & mushrooms that stand up & talk & then, instead of Easter Egg hunts, we can organize a great big Rigorous Intuition Skinwalker Hunt to cap off the festivities.

Christ, now I know why I choose fucking solitude. Adults are a miserable lot who fall all over themselves to spread their misery like rancid butter on a fresh baked muffin.
Like that feller a few threads back who invalidated everything Henry Rollins ever said because Hank likes Ted Nugent.
& then had to explain that Iggy & the Stooges weren't hippies as if it were this great big revelation he felt compelled to make because Iggy rolling in broken glass or masturbating on stage or fucking ramming a spike into his arm wasn't obvious enough.

You want to give your kids a nice big dose of reality don't bother with the widdle park or the local science center, just hustle the little dickens off to the cemetary. Yes, son, this will be you're eventual destination. You could also spend a rollicking afternoon perusing medical textbooks for cool pics of the more common diseases or maybe let them wipe the blood out a cancer patients ass as he bleeds out. Then there's the old folks home where he/she can see where their kids will abandon them. Maybe let them change a few soiled adult nappies just for a thrill. Hell , after a lifetime of thought police from both sides of the aisle telling them what to think, the grave & its run-up will feel like cool relief.

Y'know, I think I've found that special place where liberalism & conservatism intersect...

...you're all little more the fevered egos aching to remake the world in your own image.

No fucking thanks.

In fact, just to spite the 'boo-hoo, mommy & daddy lied to me about Santa' contingent, I'm gonna go tell my kids that Santa just contacted me & he thinks that, since you kids have been extra good so far this year, next Wednesday's going to be an extra special mid-year present day just for you.

Ho-fucking-ho-ho-ho!

6/28/2006 11:28:00 PM  
Blogger Brook said...

richard,

there's this thing called ativan.
ask your doctor.

6/29/2006 12:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Robert Wilson said...

Devil's Advocate's premise is that "in any other country, [bla bla bla] would have provoked the population to [bla bla bla] -- But not in the USA."

Yet Devil's Advocate opens his argument with the Golden Standard that "Jeff must be annoyed because Salon.com is more popular than RigInt."

See a contradiction in standards?

Thanks, Jeff, as usual, for setting the standard in blog excellence. A fantastic entry. It's more than a blog for me.

P.S. I'm mailing you a copy of Carl Bernstein's original Rolling Stone article from October 25, 1977, "The CIA and the Press," which revealed Operation Mockingbird.

Wonder what Farhad Manjoo & Devil's Advocate & the Debunker Apparatus has to say about Carl Bernstein's bombshell, swept beneath the waves of American amnesia.

6/29/2006 01:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Raul said...

"just hustle the little dickens off to the cemetary. Yes, son, this will be you're eventual destination."

Fucking hilarious.

I just found out (sic(yes I've siced myself, myself))aboot this neat thing called gabbly.com It's an instant chat room for any site.

Just enter:

http://gabbly.com/rigint.blogspot.com

or any other URL and it will open a chatroom on the side of the page--very cool. If anyone wants to test it out, I'll be on it for a minute (a long while to those not hip to the slang).

And when is the meet and greet? I propose Toronto as I've never been, would love to go, and it would be convenient for the guest of the hour.

6/29/2006 03:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

In fact, just to spite the 'boo-hoo, mommy & daddy lied to me about Santa' contingent, I'm gonna go tell my kids that Santa just contacted me & he thinks that, since you kids have been extra good so far this year, next Wednesday's going to be an extra special mid-year present day just for you.

Ho-fucking-ho-ho-ho!



Yeah, you do that, Richard, and pretend some poor, miserable, abused Chinese kid didn't make those presents you bought at Wal-Mart for your children.

I have to say, though, your massive Strawman is certainly in keeping with the theme of the thread, though.

I'm sorry you think the path to happiness is The Yellow Brick Road, but that's the way it goes, I suppose. You can't just undue years of conditioning with a wave of the hand.

By the way.....I still love ya, just like I like Sweet & Sour Chicken.

6/29/2006 10:28:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

American amnesia

I'd say more like a genetically coded state of dememtia.

It would be easier for me to handle being a sheep if I didn't know I was a sheep.

6/29/2006 10:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

And when is the meet and greet? I propose Toronto as I've never been, would love to go, and it would be convenient for the guest of the hour.

Nope, I've already suggested Whistler. I think it's the perfect spot, and I'm sure you will agree once you've been there. The setting is much more metaphorical.

And, just for Richard, I'll wear a Santa outfit.

Santa.....Dead Iraqi Kid With Extremities Blown Off.

Santa......Dead Somalian Child Raped And Skull Crushed By The Butt Of A Rebel Gun.

Santa......10 Year Old Chinese Child Working 14 Hours A Day Seven Days A Week Making Worthless Shit.

Santa Loves You More Than Them Children Because You're Special. You're Better Than Them.

6/29/2006 10:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...

Well Shrubageddon, since I know that you live a monk-like existence in a sparsely furnished mud-floor Quonset hut that uses only recycled paper as its fuel with a lone goat as your only companion. & every morning you arise & politely ask said goat if you may please pretty please palm her teat for your days sustenance & promise to give burnt offerings to the special goat shrine you have set up in your Quonset hut so said goat doesn't feel under-appreciated & violated by her daily teat squeeze, I'll excuse your anti-Santa fetish.

I'm also quite sure that you're so anti-materialist that, instead of a costly 3rd world manufactured computer that the majority of the starving chineese kids you weep for couldn't afford on their best day, you just RV yourself into the internet. &, on those days when the old concentration isn't quite up to snuff, you've managed to cobble together an eco-friendly computer out of a bank of Leydan jars, tin foil, a recycled tv & a recycled typewriter.

This all reminds me of this very liberal very vegan very preachy young lady my wife used to work with. Anytime she spied someone masticating a hunk of animal flesh she'd launch into an uninvited rant about how bad, how very very bad, meat masticating was.

Then she started getting busted.

One Xmas party she was hunkered down in a cubicle gnawing on some salami.

Another party found her hunkered in her cubicle gnawing on a hot dog.

But only after I caught her hiding outside a wedding reception with a plate of beef tips did I take off the kid gloves & have myself some fun.

So now, every time I have the pleasure of sharing a meal with miss morality ,I make sure I I park my carcass right across the table from her with a nice juicy hamburger or a nice thick steak & lip-smackingly display my extreme culinary enjoyment as she sits enraptured in herbivore wanna-be wonderland with her plate of celery lettuce radish slices & parsley snips.

Great great fun to say the least.

If your looking for a perfect world pal, good fucking luck.

BTW, before you take offense, I remind you that I did fess up to being a total & unapologetic dick.

BTW pt duex, what crystal ball do use that's showing you what those presents will be?

I ask because you were ripped off. Your psychic viewscreen is just a hunk of glass that quite obviously tells lies.

Ask for your money back.

6/29/2006 11:33:00 AM  
Anonymous tal said...

Wonderful rant at 11:28, Richard!


Sybil's mother employed a similar justification when she sexually abused her daughter: Men are going to be sticking things up you when you're older, so you might as well get used to it now...


My kids were well past puberty by the time they realized that Santa/St Nikolas/Father Christmas requires human help to manifest the qualities of love, charity, kindness, forgiveness etc into the material realm. No trauma.

If people don't want their kids to grow up to be materialists, they'd better figure out how to introduce them to spirituality because those are the only choices...

6/29/2006 12:10:00 PM  
Blogger sfmike said...

Dear Anonymous 3:32: Thanks for the Ramadan essay, which was fascinating. The fact that Muslims also take the prohibition against usury seriously (which prohibition is also present, but ignored, in the Judeo-Christian religions) is probably another factor keeping them from being immoderately rapacious about wealth.

6/29/2006 01:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

Interesting comment, Tal. We have to nefariously show our love to our children via a corpulent child molestor referred to as Santa. Get over there and sit on Santa's lap you little bastard!! I don't care if he's drunk, drooling and has a hard-on, I paid good money for this, and you're going to sit on his lap and play out this pseudo sexual molestation ritual whether you like it, or not!!

Funny thing is, my kids have more fun with the boxes the toys come in than they do with the toys the boxes held. Same goes for the card board paper towel cylinders. They can play with that shit for hours. The toys....well, they play with them for a few minutes and quickly become bored. See, kids like to use their imaginations, and it's healthy and natural for them to do so. They only need the simplest of props to activate their beautiful minds......the more complex the prop, the less imagination they have to use, and the more you turn them into a witless sheep.

So, fuck Santa, and I'm no liberal, and I don't appreciate the implication that I am, however, I will say this, Richard. You better thank your lucky stars the liberals created a little thing called Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, and have fought to keep those programs in place. See, considering you are a smoker, chances are Open Heart Surgery is just around the corner for you, and healthcare will become an increasingly pertinent issue for you. In fact, it will become a matter of survival. So, when that time comes, I would hope you think fondly of the liberals who helped make your surgery possible, and continue to fight to keep it possible.

Finally, I'm not sure I understand you have a point in this discussion. I admittedly am part of the system and hooked into the grid, but are you saying I should not care that I am and just go with the flow and mind my own business? Sorry, but I can't and won't do that. Until my dying day, I will continue to say how fucked up it is. I will do what I can, within practical limits, to reduce my footprint, and hope upon hope that one day, man will live in harmony with his surroundings.

See, I'm a cynic, not a pessimist. I don't think it's impossible to stop the crazy train on our own before it crashes, but it's highly unlikely, and your hostile attitude is a shining example why.

Oh, and no offense taken. I mean, how could I take offense from spiritual individuals such as Tal and Youself?

6/29/2006 01:51:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lived in Riyadh. During Ramadan people would simply shop after sunset, well into the night. The ecomomy did not suffer. And there was plenty of "pushing and shoving in a crowded stores to buy over-priced useless, unwanted junk that will be broken tomorrow"- Arabs basically buy the same things everyone else buys.

Yes, Jeff's site does have strange "spam-like" characteristics- long obscure trolling entries, mega-posters repeatedly using gratuitous profanity, split personalities argueing off-topic amongst "themselves", and shills dropping unsubstantiated propaganda bombs here and there. I guess it just means Jeff's posts are on target.

---

Someone here once said they have personal litmus tests for swinging lunesta lies put in front of them.

One example is the "Democrats vrs. Republicans" sheepskin. Of course you know that not one Democratic Senator would support an investigation into voting anomolies that gave the presidency again to the "Republicans" in 2004 (Only one Senator was needed, so a few desparate black House Reps pracically begged on the Senate floor, for naught...).

http://www.verifiedvoting.org/article.php?id=5590

And a strawman example: Yesterday Colbert had an "ex-CIA operative" on, hawking a book explaining to us all how Osama met up with an Iranian to promote terrorism, yet of course doesn't mention that Osama is/was on the CIA payroll just like himself, that Al-Queda was/is a CIA operation, that the CIA repeatedly let Osama "slip through the net"...

The November 1, 1998, the British 'Independent' reported that one of those charged with the 1998 bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, Ali Mohammed, had trained "bin Laden's operatives" in 1989.

These "operatives" were recruited at the al Kifah Refugee Centre in Brooklyn, New York, given paramilitary training in the New York area and then sent to Afghanistan with US assistance to join Hekmatyar's forces. Mohammed was a member of the US army's elite Green Berets.

The program, reported the Independent, was part of a Washington-approved plan called "Operation Cyclone".

In Pakistan, recruits, money and equipment were distributed to the mujaheddin factions by an organisation known as Maktab al Khidamar (Office of Services - MAK).

MAK was a front for Pakistan's CIA, the Inter-Service Intelligence Directorate. The ISI was the first recipient of the vast bulk of CIA and Saudi Arabian covert assistance for the Afghan contras. Bin Laden was one of three people who ran MAK. In 1989, he took overall charge of MAK.



Maybe the wizard will give the strawman brains, maybe he had them all along....

6/29/2006 02:01:00 PM  
Anonymous RollickHooper said...

If you keep asking the question Jeff, maybe someone will hear you. Devil's Advocate makes a good point, heads should have rolled by now but they haven't and it doesn't look like they're going to. What do we do about it, besides chat? Come on boys, let's try to stay on topic, because it is the one answer that needs finding, and the sooner the better.

6/29/2006 02:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

sfmike said...
Dear Anonymous 3:32: Thanks for the Ramadan essay, which was fascinating. The fact that Muslims also take the prohibition against usury seriously (which prohibition is also present, but ignored, in the Judeo-Christian religions) is probably another factor keeping them from being immoderately rapacious about wealth.



I second that notion. It was a wonderful essay, and it correlates nicely with my essay I posted several threads back entitled The Last Crusade.

The price you pay for not worshipping Santa, the God of Consumerism. He knows when you've been nauty and he knows when you've been nice. How creepy is that? And, of course, there is always the anagram of the name. Isn't that special, and merely a coincidence, of course.

6/29/2006 02:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

Yes, Jeff's site does have strange "spam-like" characteristics- long obscure trolling entries, mega-posters repeatedly using gratuitous profanity, split personalities argueing off-topic amongst "themselves", and shills dropping unsubstantiated propaganda bombs here and there. I guess it just means Jeff's posts are on target.


And then, of course, there are the sane, rational, erudite and composed posters such as yourself who are well traveled (Riyadh - you go girl). Yeah, just a regular chummy fella/lass who is above the fray.

6/29/2006 02:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

RollickHooper said...
If you keep asking the question Jeff, maybe someone will hear you. Devil's Advocate makes a good point, heads should have rolled by now but they haven't and it doesn't look like they're going to. What do we do about it, besides chat? Come on boys, let's try to stay on topic, because it is the one answer that needs finding, and the sooner the better.



We have to start by agreeing to refrain from debating the minutia of the reality they have created, and begin creating our own realities that forces their reaction. Otherwise, we are just playing into their hands.

6/29/2006 02:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also am wishing "shrubageddon" and richard would camp out on some other blog....

(jeez- 11 worthless comments here so far by shrubageddon", with richard starting to catch up. What a couple of pathetic idiots.)

6/29/2006 02:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Apparently, there is a lot of internal editing going on on this post that is invisible to the reader. My last post disappeared so here is a reconstruction of it as closely as I can make it:

To Anonymous 2:01, if you ever did in fact live in Riyadh, it must have been in the foreigners enclave, huddled together with all the other Americans and Europeans

I have never seen any Arabs "shopping till midnight" in any muslim country on earth at any time of the year [But then, of course, I've never been to Dubai - though that isn't strictly speaking a country on its own]. Even the heavily tourist-focussed shopping districts in the old medinas and the new towns alike wind down in late even, by 9 or 10 at the latest, during the rest of the year.

During Ramadan, the shopping peaks in the late afternoon, when all the Arabs, as well as any expats or tourists who know that by dark everything will be closed up tighter than a clam, are out buying last minute foodstuffs for the evening meal, the fitr that breaks the fast. After the meal, and evening prayers, the cafe's will reopen, but that's about it. Your image of jostling shoppers is a fantasy, at best. Yes, indeed, as you yourself wrote, there are trolls and shills hereabouts.

During Ramad

6/29/2006 02:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re my post above, I forgot to mention the notable exception of Beirut, the Middle East's own version of Las Vegas.

6/29/2006 02:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ buck fush

The wrong assumption in the convenient way you lay out the example of a court case is that the prosecutor would be going at it with the exact same evidence now available via the Internet. In fact, getting 9/11 into court would have first involved a grand jury or state attorney's investigation; that in turn would have meant (assuming the prosecutor was honest and serious) subpoenas of documents and questioning. The discovery process would be aimed at getting information of how (of which we have precious little, whatever your complete speculations here, apparently involving a "no plane" scenario). By the time there were indictments, there would be ample usable evidence of the "how." Meanwhile, the whole point is to establish probable cause that a crime was committed; that is what is required at this stage. No who or how is necessary; only a habeas corpus. If you can show there were crimes for which perpetrators are still on the loose, even if perpetrators and exact method remain unknown, that can get a grand jury; the rest would be up to the prosecutor and discovery. So yes, the plausibility arguments of TENC are very powerful, at the stage we are (still) at, and the fictions of the "no planers" are useless.

"Mr. 9/11 Truth"

6/29/2006 04:58:00 PM  
Anonymous humblenotry said...

Yeah. 911 man said that plane bad. Other 911 man said plane good. Must mean me bad good man. I contact Rush Limbaugh to find truth. Wikipedia say Limbaugh help.

I see the disinformation battles over the 911 tragedy puts a tint of glitter on a most repugnant situation. The War On Muslims. Reconstruction of Iraq is going on as planned. U.S. soldiers die and are permanently disabled every day there. Iraqians killed and disabled every day. Depleted Uranium for all the happy people there to be exposed to. The best part of this situation is the peoples of Russia, the Middle East, China, India, Brazil, Mexico, and Cuba are beginning to hate American people more everyday. At least 3 billion people. Few Americans realize that China has sent men into space and that their engineering is far more advanced than Americans are being told. Always a good thing.

When the soldiers on both sides of this conflict return to their families in one piece do they celebrate the fact that all this information about 911 has come out? Maybe. If so I hope the wives stay clear out of punching bag range. Then again maybe one of the wives is actually Sun Tzu in drag and is the mastermind behind the 911 terrorism. Who can tell? It's sick.

6/29/2006 05:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

FLASH: One of the Miami/Liberty City 7 is a Rothschild. No kidding.

"As details of the supposed plot and the identity of the alleged conspirators came more sharply into focus, however, the media backed away. Not only was the Chicago skyscraper in no danger, there also existed no plot, much less the means of carrying one out. The entire government case was so manifestly bogus that not even the right-wing fabulists at Fox News could sustain it.

Nevertheless, the initial sensationalism and fear-mongering had an effect. By the time public defenders were appointed for the seven men indicted in the case, the attorneys’ protests that their clients were victims of blatant government entrapment received a minute fraction of the attention given the government’s “terror” charges at the outset.

Who are the seven young men—Narseal Batiste, 32, Patrick Abraham, 26, Burson Augustin, 21, Rothschild Augustine, 22, Naudimar Herrera, 22, Lyglenson Lemorin, 31, and Stanley Grant Phanor, 31—whose mug shots were broadcast into millions of American homes as the supposed new “face of terror?” They include a former Federal Express driver, two Haitian immigrants—one a legal resident and the other undocumented—and several other individuals from Miami’s deeply impoverished and predominantly black Liberty City neighborhood.

What will happen to them? Despite the transparent attempts by both the government and the media to “lower expectations” in relation to the case, and the near unanimous view of the legal community that the case is at best “thin” and at worst a crude exercise in state provocation and entrapment, the seven defendants remain in federal lockup. They face the very real threat of spending the rest of their lives in prison for the sole “crime” of having allowed themselves to be drawn into supposedly incriminating conversations with an undercover FBI informant/agent provocateur."

Well.......sort of. But still, a Nuwaubian Rothschild semi-wannabe terra-ist. Pretty rich.

6/29/2006 07:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff said:

"Debunkers and disinformation artists aren't always found in the alphabet soups of intelligence agencies. Often, they're just working for themselves, trying to establish their names in whatever fields they've staked out by launching them into the prevailing winds."

I don't think that's a thesis that is really supported by any evidence that we've seen about

- the amount of money thrown into such debunking (how much has Bush illegally spent on 'poisioning the waters' of the already toxic coporate U.S. media?, in the GAO report on his government propoganda and buying off various media heads? It's something like over a billion dollars!),

- the hiring of revolutionaries to discredit revolutionaries (The "Chicago CIA 7"; The Strawberry Statement, by Koren; "non-Stokley Carmichael" Black Panthers),

- and the high level that "professional conspiracy" (as the definition of politics, (thanks for that definition above) and

- that Rockefeller "of course I'm an international conspiracist out to destroy you, wake up already" quote, above.

Besides, granted Jeff's idea is true, it still fails to explain the selection factor of picking and choosing. In other words he may be right that they are autonomous, though they are selected and popularized as "useful idiots" just because they are autonomous in a paradoxical manner (when the choosing of them in such corporate media places like that guy Moojou (or whatever) is the paradox that makes them not autonomous at all.

Here's a quote I saved about this very phenomena:

"With our great influence in publishing and publicity we are able to selectively popularize theorists whose views are incidentally beneficial, compatible, or at least not in conflict with our own goals. This way we obtain sincere, energetic activists to propogate our desires without having to reveal our [financial] motives even existence....[Thus], the brillian researchers and experimenters who make most of the break-throughs earnestly believe that their techniques are destined strictly for the betterment of mankind." --Anomymous, Transcripts of the Global Elite

The issue is how to reframe basic reality for others--to be innately about conspiracy and be aware that governments want to warp the culture game to their clientelistic benefit. A lack of conspiracy in the very fabric of most clientelistic state cultures would be the odd thing instead of visa versa though definitely one of the goals of the aforementioned "global elite" to support from its earnest "autonomous" writer hacks.

There is a lack of relish for those brought up in the previous clientelistic lie about disguising a political reality that is closer to a political and consumer non-flat billard table that innately engineers a culture to ignore the tipped table and play the game anyway ("yes, Virginia, there is no Santa Claus, though believe it since your father is the CEO of the mall, and tell your friends at school that he has hired Santa to visit them all there one week before Christmas").

To adopt a view that places most historic politial reality as innately skewed by omission and selection toward state clientelistic conspiracy and jury-rigging of the cultural fabric is perhaps a more accurate way to view reality for most of human history.

The desires of those with tremendous political and financial power--like that of the traitors that pulled off the 9-11 attacks in the U.S. government--is one example of how the whole idea of an offial (cultural) story is entirely a state creation.

Certain bad shots across the table by drug sotted brain-decayed morons like Bush keep going in over and over, despite his lack of skill simply because the table is warped gravitationally to deliver a higher level of "good shot, sir!" affirmations (who remembers the pained disinfo of "Bush has gravitas now" bullshit that was spun around?) even though they can see that the tilted table pockets more than he ever could.

Bush is so much a creation of the crony USA insider trading cryptocracy--and its endless stash of 'get out of jail free' card usages, mixed with business failures, public bailouts, that his whole life resembles more the effects of the Borg on someone that he resembles a human being at all.

Meanwhile, skilled knowledgable players against this Borg are forced to attempt to guage how to shoot uphill in strange arcs or high risk bank shots toward a goal, and are hounded by those decrying their lack of skill who ignore the tilted table, or simply ignore that they are even playing the game at all (like the U.S. press's "non-responses" to Nader running for president, for instance or blithe attitude toward systemic e-vote fraud and unauditable elections).

As others can shoot "downhill at society" toward their goals in the culture at large, others are shooting uphill across a torturous path.

Telling the truth about innate conspiracy of the present world is innately part of shooting uphill.

I read a nice quote here that I don't really know if I agree with its jocular simplicity:

"Really addressing the problem of climate change will require many small-scale adjustments (no more heated towel racks) and also a great many more substantial ones: changes in energy consumption, energy production, patterns of land use, transportation systems, international relations. Rather than assume that Americans haven't done anything about global warming because they are sceptical about the threat, one could just as plausibly argue that they are sceptical about the threat because they don't want to do anything."

It implies that instead of information becoming a basis of action, that people have already chosen their desired action and are looking for information to justify the (in)action, as the case may be.

Let's apply that inverted logic to the 9-11 information:

Rather than assume that Americans haven't done anything about government perpetration of the events of 9-11 because they are sceptical about the threat, one could just as plausibly argue that they are sceptical about the threat because they don't want to do anything."

However, who is really to blame?

Elites in our present skewed up societies require a basis of people "believing in no conspiracies" to allow their conspiracies to operate successfully.

Particularly given the amount of social engineering that went on in the U.S. school system (founded by a coterie of German Prussian inspired hyperrich and politically connected Bonesmen; Carnegies, and Morgan connected (British!) Peabody Foundations as well; and look up those Rockefeller educational "occassional letters" while your at it where they talk of wanting to sculpt a whole society 'to willingly allow them to be putty in their hands' in so many words).

They have for several generations intentionally--for these are their stated goals--to intentionally raise a nation of horn-less bored and easily dominated sheep. In other words, I doubt that there is really anything 'naturally' called the sheeple. Most examples of the present day sheeple or sheeple actions are really "Sheeple, Inc." effects--a factory farm environment that endlessly requires a large amount of maintenance from all quarters to keep the fences mended, the horns cut off, or bred out, or the food of low quality, etc.

In other words, "not believing in conspiracies" may have its mental-religious advantages for some, as they see it. However, taking the longer view, this belief and desire is highly social engineered and is a conspiracy at the fabric of culture to make them politically inert.

Engineered credulity and gullability of course makes such conspiracies possible in the first place.

The U.S. is perhaps one of the only places in the world barely cresting the 50% figure (Zogby poll, June 2006) for "Bush did it" as the real story of 9-11. Everyone else rose past that long ago.

Besides, exactly what is (titter titter...) questionable about Dylan Avery's Loose Change anyway, except its a non-sponosred non-corporate view that allows people to see the Emperor halfwit and his team have no clothes and that the official story never really was? (And Loose Change didn't even get into the really juicy stuff. There's so much more. The interesting bit is viewing the earlier part 1 and 2 small segments of Loose Change on Google Video, and seeing what they decided to add and remove from certain discussions. The little bits earlier are even more earnest in some parts about plane substitutions and other things, which dropped out of the larger 80 minute Loose Change.)

Enough for now.

I will say though for up and coming parents out there, be warned: I always thought my parents were really stupid and it lowered my estimation for them hugely for expecting me to believe in Santa, and I found it insulting that they would really dupe a child on such things, to force or foster a belief that they obviously didn't even believe in the first place, on someone else. It will only distance you from your children instead of bring you closer to make a lie the basis of your socialization with them.

And yes, thanks for the Ramadan/Eid discussion. Islam is really far more progressive socially than Roman Christianity's gilded cardinals, tax-farming bishophrics and starving poor for centuries ad nauseum. The "double tightening of the screw" with Calivinst/Protestant leadership's popularization of the innate damning of the poor and the Rich as a Religious Elect was even worse than Roman Christianity ever was. Calvinism is closer to being in line with the social structure of a Jewish theocracy of rich priests actually.

Islam gets a bad rap in the selfish West, because at heart in its doctrine it is not an economically selfish religion. All social comeraderie and local autonomy of sharing is a direct affront to a NWO driven manical world that wants material as well as ideological conformity that wants to crush everyone down to a singularity addicted to centrally programmed and easily changed TV/radio purchasing behaviors.

I just had a funny image pop into my head: the Kabba cube wrapped up in green, red and gold like a Christmas boxed present. That's what the West wants to do to it. May it ever remain as black velvet and gold mysterious as it is now..

6/29/2006 08:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff's intro quote from Lou Reed's song "Strawman", from (appropriately) the album New York. Mostly "unemotional as concrete" Lou Reed really gets into this song by the way.


We who have so much
to you who have so little
to you won don't have anything at all
We who have so much
more than any one man does need
and you who don't have anything at all
Does anybody need another million dollar movie
Does anybody need another million dollar star
Does anybody need to be told over and over
Spitting in the wind comes back at you twice as hard

Strawman, going straight to the devil
Strawman, going straight to hell

Strawman, going straight to the devil
Strawman, going straight to hell

Does anyone really need a billion dollar rocket
Does anyone need a $60,000 car
Does anyone need another President?
or the sins of Swaggart--parts 6, 7, 8 and 9
Ah, Does anyone need another politician
caught with his pants down
and money sticking in his hole!
Does anyone need another racist preacher!
Spittin' in the wind can only do you harm

Does anyone need another faulty shuttle
blasting off to the Moon, Venus or Mars
Does anyone need another self-righteous rock and roll singer
whose nose he says has led him straight to God
Does anyone NEED YET ANOTHER BLANK SKYCRAPER
If you're like me I'm sure a minor miracle would do!
A flaming sword!--or maybe a gold ark!--floating up the Hudson!
When you spit in the wind it comes right back at you

Strawman, going straight to the devil!
Strawman, going straight to hell!

Strawman, going straight to the devil!
Strawman, going straight to hell!

Straw-ah-aw-man!

6/29/2006 09:05:00 PM  
Anonymous silverfox said...

Since I see no one has mentioned the news of yesterday's "Patriotism Survey" in which the US quite decisively took first place among 34 other nations surveyed, with Venezuela of all places breathing down it's neck in second, here it is...

"Americans Rank No. 1 in Patriotism Survey (AP)

CHICAGO (AP) - When it comes to national pride, Americans are No. 1, according to a survey of 34 countries' patriotism.

Venezuela came in a close second in the survey, released Tuesday by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago.

People rated how proud they were of their countries in 10 areas: political influence, social security, the way their democracy works, economic success, science and technology, sports, arts and literature, military, history, and fair treatment of all groups in society.

In the U.S., ``the two things we rank high on are what we think of as the political or power dimension,'' said Tom W. Smith, a researcher at the university. ``Given that we're the one world superpower, it's not that surprising.''

Patriotism is mostly a New World concept, the researchers said. Former colonies and newer nations were more likely to rank high on the list, while Western European, East Asian and former socialist countries usually ranked near the middle or bottom.

The U.S. ranked highest overall and in five categories: pride in its democracy, political influence, economy, science and military. Venezuela ranked highest in four categories: sports, arts and literature, history, and fair treatment of all groups in society.

Eric Wingerter, a Washington spokesman for the Venezuelan government, said many Venezuelans believe President Hugo Chavez has helped create a new sense of national pride. ``There's been a real emphasis on rediscovering what it means to be Venezuelan,'' he said.

Chavez rails against the U.S. government and the Bush administration in particular.

Ireland came in at No. 3, followed by South Africa and Australia.

Cultural differences might explain the lower rankings for the three Asian countries on the list - Japan (18th), Taiwan (29th), and Korea (31), Smith said.

``It is both bad luck and poor manners to be boastful about things there,'' Smith said.

Countries that were part of the former Soviet Union or in the former Eastern Bloc ranked lower because they are still struggling to find new national identities, Smith said. Hungary was the highest Eastern European country on the list at 21."
*****

Should we find this surprising? Or perhaps not so surprising?

Such surveys are, of course, undertaken pretty much in a vacuum since most people have very little to actually compare or contrast with their daily experience.

On the other hand, in many very progressive nations that do set and maintain particularly high social standards for themselves there is always a serious and steady drive for improvement. The idea that things both can and should be "better" than they are.

The better you actually are and know you are the far more irritating and frustrating any such failings and inadequacies actually do become...hmmm?

I think that's probably a far more plausible explanation for Western Europe's hesitancy to wave their own flags or pat themselves on the back since they know quite well that their overall political and economic structures or the quality of life they enjoy is just about as good as it gets on this planet, not to mention considerably better than it is, or ever will be for a vast majority of Americans.

I have a sense here too that ordinary Americans are quite fixated with the idea that irrespective of how things actually are, they couldn't possibly be better let alone be better anywhere else...hmmm?

Simply inculcated with the idea that any such a suggestion is just patently impossible and disregarding anything or anyone that might cast some doubt on that.

I'm curious to know how this squares with the general state of affairs in the US and how that sits with other posters here, particularly Americans ones and what they make of it.

6/29/2006 10:24:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

FLOYD HERE

IM WATCHING Dead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The GroveDead At The Grove

6/29/2006 11:02:00 PM  
Anonymous opensaysme said...

floyd - maybe you ought to quit watching for awhile, aye.

6/29/2006 11:07:00 PM  
Anonymous lll said...

fwiw....

right after the 04 election, i submitted a comment to manjoo's nonsense that salon actually posted online. there was then a volley, and manjoo ultimately visited cannonfire after joe there posted a scathing takedown of his many errors and inconsistencies. after more volley, in which manjoo exposed the most abundant ego sensitivities and amazing proclivity for pompous patronizing pap, i finally suggested to brad friedman that he have manjoo on his radio show for a debate on the 04 election fraud.

interestingly, manjoo declined, saying that he really didn't feel qualified.

???

i swear, that's what he said.

ya gotta wonder just why salon is so determined to keep him on this story, let alone keep him on staff. and then they cut him loose on other topics he knows nothing about?

whatever. in any case, manjoo's idiocy was THE reason i droped my scrip to salon.

6/29/2006 11:17:00 PM  
Anonymous silly rabbit said...

silverfox--

You might like this
article, which provides an interesting example of the way patriotism in America seems to've become confused with militarism.

As an added bonus, I'll throw in two thoughts from an american-- 1) that Americans have a cultural pressure to take pride in this country. This is especially evident when you see right wingers taunting the left, accusing them of hating America and wanting to hand it over to "the 'Moslems' and the illegals." The more educated righties use more refined phraseology, but the sentiment is the same.

2) America is a nouveau riche country. Old money has the tasteful, understated wardrobe and speaks in quiet tones. The ones who got lucky, or had to fight for their money, like to crow about it and throw their weight around and have whatever "the best" is, because they can afford it, and they feel as though they deserve it, even if they haven't developed the sense to recognize what things really cost, and which things really matter. America seems like that.

6/29/2006 11:52:00 PM  
Anonymous yesferatu said...

Anyone want to identify what the similarities are between these three gatekeepers: Manjoo, Cenk Uygur, and Kos?

Meaningless, I'm sure.

But still odd.

6/30/2006 12:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Silly Rabbite, you said that right wingers bait the (falsely dichotomous, pseudo-)lefties by saying they want to turn the U.S. over to the Moslems???

Provocative "observation." I have heard a lot of leftie-baiting but I've never heard that one, other than from you. As an old Arab folk wisdom states: "He who repeats an insult, insults me."

You also wrote: "Old money has the tasteful, understated wardrobe and speaks in quiet tones."

Uh, yeah......Riiigght: Like, uh, Prince Harry in Nazi drag? Or his father Charles declaring his wish to be a tampon? Or maybe you meant Gloria von Thurm und Taxis and her blue mohawk hair?

And those are minor examples that give the lie to your claim. But maybe you meant the hush hush understatement of generations of pederasty and incest. Yeah, I guess that must be what you meant...

6/30/2006 12:29:00 AM  
Anonymous silly rabbit said...

a) All sound like characters from Final Fantasy

b) All incredibly conceited

c) All defenders of Official Truth

d) All hail from Squaresville-- Kos from the military, Cenk from business school, Manjoo was business and technology writer.

6/30/2006 12:59:00 AM  
Anonymous silly rabbit said...

But maybe you meant the hush hush understatement of generations of pederasty and incest. Yeah, I guess that must be what you meant...

No, I don't know about the closely guarded private lives of old money folks-- I just know how they dress and how they behave in public-- but it sounds like you have some inside information.

6/30/2006 01:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, I do.

6/30/2006 01:35:00 AM  
Blogger slomo said...

Wikipedia has its limitations, but can be enlightening if used in unconventional ways.

6/30/2006 01:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm the poster of the Santa comment. I thought Richard's reaction was interesting.

Reality apparently sucks, so we must all dwell in, and perpetuate fantasies.

You know what? I don't care how "bad" it gets; it used to be a lot worse relatively speaking, and frankly its a gift to be alive. I mean, what else would be doing? Not existing? Is that preferable?

Mortality makes life precious. If we were immortal it would be a drag.

My point was, lying is engrained in our culture. We lie all the time about myriad things. This isn't a novel observation, many have pointed it out and written articles, essays, and books on it.

I personally think that if everyone faced more reality, it would improve because people would deal with their problems rather than run from them, ignore them, misdiagnose them, or declare them nonproblems.

Too many don't do that because it allows them to maintain a certain lifestyle.

I don't hate Santa in particular, but he is an early, common example of institutionalized lying one faces in one's life.

The rest takes place from the usual suspects; TV, School, Church, Work, Society, etc.

And another thing, I thought about death a lot when I was a kid because I knew it was coming, and I made my peace with it years ago. It's inevitable and I learned to deal with it. I don't sit around obsessing about prolonging my life indefinitely. Other things as well. I thought about serious, adult things, because it just seemed appropriate and that's how I was raised.

But I find that most of my peers are escapists who don't know the costs of things, or if they do, don't think about them very often, and don't care about change, or if they do, have no clue how to implement it. Instead, they are more interested in their lifestyles. Perhaps they'll grow out of this, or be yanked out of it by economic circumstances.

6/30/2006 03:00:00 AM  
Blogger Sounder said...

Jeff, do you mean, what do we deserve? We deserve to live under the constraints of cause and effect reality.

Fate and Fortune. Something happened, the question now is, are we up to the task of bringing the positive out of it?

The great advantage of the prevaricators is that they all support each other, and general pretences that maintain the status quo. This creates a large support group for a static picture of reality.

Our advantage is that reality is not static. If we create a community that can better define a proper dynamic relationship to reality, then we may yet pull our Asses out of the fire.

6/30/2006 07:26:00 AM  
Anonymous silly rabbit said...

Anonymous reply:Yes, I do
Hmmmmmmm. . .

Well, suffice it to say that on a regular basis I hear from people who condemn "commies"and "people who hate this country." The "Moslems and illegals" rant came to mind because it's a direct quote from one of the most recent pieces of hate mail I came across.

You made a good and relevant point when you wrote that the left / right construct was a false dichotomy. The fact that Arianna Huffington herself used to be on the "right" should indicate to anyone paying attention that wealthy people don't really concern themselves with sides.

But I think you missed my point, which is that Republicans, conservative Christians and other people who identify themselves as on the right have pretty much cornered the market on patriotism in America. And like the left / right debate, it's more about perception than reality.

6/30/2006 09:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

You made a good and relevant point when you wrote that the left / right construct was a false dichotomy. The fact that Arianna Huffington herself used to be on the "right" should indicate to anyone paying attention that wealthy people don't really concern themselves with sides.

But I think you missed my point, which is that Republicans, conservative Christians and other people who identify themselves as on the right have pretty much cornered the market on patriotism in America. And like the left / right debate, it's more about perception than reality.



Very true, silly rabbit.

Hillary Roddam (sp?) Clinton was a Goldwaterite once upon a time, and now she's labeled as a flaming liberal.

Guess what, Sheeples? She's neither.

With Us Or Against Us.

Either/Or

Us and Them

And afterall, we're only ordinary men.

6/30/2006 10:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

Then they can join us here as we babble on about space aliens & satanic rapists & mushrooms that stand up & talk & then, instead of Easter Egg hunts, we can organize a great big Rigorous Intuition Skinwalker Hunt to cap off the festivities.


Richard, I have to compliment you on this. I thought about it on the way to work today, and I burst out in uncontrollable laughter. You have quite a talent, and that's why I love you. We may disagree, but I can't help but enjoy your style. Of course, people were looking at me as though I was crazy.....sitting there at the stop light laughing so hard tears were rolling down my face......fuck them and the Santa they rode in on.

6/30/2006 10:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Richard and Shrubbageggdon, get your own blogs and get out of here. Your posts are pretty much off topic, useless, and distracting.

6/30/2006 11:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Luposapien said...

Barely enough time to read through these threads, and never enough time to craft an adequate response.

I used to be very taken with Salon, back when I was still laboring under the old left-right false dichotomy. This was before the theft of the 2000 election, when I started to dig a little deeper, and then, of course, 9/11/01, when the mask slipped off completely. I still feel like I'm a bit of a newcomer to many of the ideas presented here, but it's all strangely familiar just the same. I suspect that we all pick up the signals, wether or not we process them consciously.

Slomo: I was pretty floored by your memetic analysis of apocalypse. Reason being, just yesterday morning, as I was sitting through the beggining of a rather boring staff meeting, I was jotting down ideas of how to construct just such a network. I was really more focused on creating a web of connections surrounding specific individuals and events connected with the conspiracy/high-wierdness type situations that get discussed here, and not apocalyptic thinking specifically. I was imagining a web that could distinguish between different types of relationships (financial, philisophical, romantic) and also indicate the direction that power flows in particular connections. My main probelm being that I have neither the technical skill, time, or means to produce such a work (I have no computer at home, only at work). Ah well...

6/30/2006 12:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Shrubageddon said...

Anonymous said...
Richard and Shrubbageggdon, get your own blogs and get out of here.


Why the hell would I get my own blog, and who the hell are you to tell anyone to get the hell out of here?


Your posts are pretty much off topic,

How could anything be off-topic at this blog? Seriously, you have to be kidding, aren't you.

useless,

That's your opinion. I don't think anything anyone has to say is useless, whether I agree with them or not.


and distracting.

Distracting from what? I would really like to hear the answer to that one. If you don't like what Richard and I have to say, then skip to the next post. How difficult is that?

I think the whole Santa line of reasoning was, and is rather elucidating, and apparently others here did, as well.

It's amazing how the movie One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest manifests itself metaphorically time and time again. I'll let you explain what I mean by that if it's not too over your head.

6/30/2006 01:26:00 PM  
Anonymous jules said...

richard and shrub, could you please leave now. There is not enough fascism in the world and you absence could really help with RI's contribution on that front.

I saw a show about Cicero last night.

It got me thinking.

Who burned the Reichstag, did anyone ever prove anything?

In the public atmosphere of the forum, Cicero made his reputation by challenging the equivalent of Dick Cheney in court. Cicero defended a man accused of a heinous crime, a man for whom the bell had tolled already.

He exposed a great conspiracy, but that wasn't enough.

He challenged the conspirators publically and in the process appealed to what was best about the Roman system. (Pre ceasar).

The same supoposed freedoms and protections that we have here. (Read into that what you like).

They were not enough (neither was his evidence), until he inspired the crowd with what was good about those freedoms - the protection they offered from corruption. He inspired the crowd to defend what was most important, he inspired the judges of the case to remember that they had power representing the public who were at the case, and anyone else absent.

@000 years latert idiots still bring him up because of it.

In neither of these cases (Cicero defending Sextus, and the reifchstag fire), was the conspiracy at the heart of the matter ever formally resolved.

however in both these cases the prevailing mood of the population, what they believed seemed to be vital for the poutcome of the result. In the sense that the publics attitude to their city/nation and how it was run, how those in power represented them, was the deciding factor in who got away with what. (Perhaps ancient Rome was easier, with a dictatoship underway following a civil war people were aware they had absolutely no say and those in power did serve their own ends.

That thought is interesting and a little scary in light of the patriotism comments.

"The U.S. ranked highest overall and in five categories: pride in its democracy, political influence, economy, science and military. Venezuela ranked highest in four categories: sports, arts and literature, history, and fair treatment of all groups in society."

Its scary to see the US has fallen in love with the products of its power. It is losing itself in the chaotic and riotous joy that follows surrender to a greater power. Nothing there to celebrate what its individual citizens do.

Compare that to Venezuela.

7/02/2006 08:44:00 PM  
Anonymous jules said...

About Santa.

I read once about this idea that the reason we get our kids to believe the little lies like santa, the easter bunny and the tooth fairy, is so they can believe in the big ones.

You know, justice, honour, truth and all that.

All those things that don't exist unless we make them exist.

Just a thought.

PS Heres a Lou Reed song from New york.

He wrote it 17 years ago.

Lou Reed - There Is No Time

This is no time for Celebration
This is no time for Shaking Heads
This is no time for Backslapping
This is no time for Marching Bands

This is no time for Optimism
This is no time for Endless Thought
This is no time for my country Right or Wrong
Remember what that brought

There is no time [x4]

This is no time for Congratulations
This is no time to Turn Your Back
This is no time for Circumlocution
This is no time for Learned Speech

This is no time to Count Your Blessings
This is no time for Private Gain
This is a time to Put Up or Shut Up
It won't no time to come back this way again

There is no time [x4]

This is no time to Swallow Anger
This is no time to Ignore Hate
This is no time to be Acting Frivolous
because the time is getting late

This is no time for Private Vendettas
This is no time to not know who you are
Self knowledge is a dangerous thing
The freedom of who you are

This is no time to Ignore Warnings
This is no time to Clear the Plate
Let's not be sorry after the fact
and let the past become out fate

There is no time [x4]

This is no time to turn away and drink
or smoke some vials of crack
This is a time to gather force
and take dead aim and Attack

This is no time for Celebration
This is no time for Saluting Flags
This is no time for Inner Searchings
The future is at head

This is no time for Phony Rhetoric
This is no time for Political Speech
This is a time for Action
because the future's Within Reach

This is the time [x3]
because there is no time

There is no time [x4]


Is it that we are too late, he was talking about the late 80s here. or that these ideas are timeless. there is no time. Do it now.

7/02/2006 08:51:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

During Ramadan, the shopping peaks in the late afternoon, when all the Arabs, as well as any expats or tourists who know that by dark everything will be closed up tighter than a clam... Your image of jostling shoppers is a fantasy, at best. Yes, indeed, as you yourself wrote, there are trolls and shills hereabouts.

-Actually, everything OPENS after sunset during Ramadan, and indeed people stay up late. Here's one of many sources available on the internet:

"After sunset, streets and squares all over the Muslim world are thronged with people out buying food after the long day's fast, or visiting friends, or preparing for sahur, the last meal of the night, which will be taken before dawn. It is then that young Cairenes, allowed to stay up late because of Ramadan, traditionally gather in groups of three or four to go out among the crowds, swinging their glowing lanterns and chanting their ancient song of Ramadan..."

http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/199202/ramadan.s.lanterns.htm

(This pechant of some people to either romanticize or villify Arabs is interesting.)

7/11/2006 02:09:00 PM  
Blogger Bruce said...

Today,we are proud to announce the launch of the new wedding support service sell ffxi gil,packed with features sure to sell ffxi gils delight adventurers across Vana'diel looking to exchange eternal vows with their beloved!Responding to player demands for greater customization,the new service will grant brides and grooms freedom in choosing location,timing,dialogue,and sell Final Fantasy XI Gil more for their ceremony,allowing them to create a truly memorable event all their own.Information on all the features,including in-game sell ffxi gil item vendors and wedding certificates,can be found on the new wedding support site,so head on over sell ffxi gils and get started planning the wedding of your dreams sell Final Fantasy XIGil!

12/05/2009 10:05:00 PM  
Anonymous wolfet said...

The home of the infamous european toxic clan, psycho urban fraggers that pawn the virtual return to castle wolfenstein enemy territory battlefields.

7/19/2010 08:25:00 PM  
Anonymous justpub said...

Just Pub, a dumb return to castle wolfenstein enemy territory comic strip by feuersturm.

7/19/2010 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger polo shirts said...

History of polo ralph lauren. Polo fashions had its humble beginnings in 1968 when tie salesman Ralph Lauren gave it a kick start. By 1969 he had a boutique polo ralph lauren factory stores within the Manhattan department store Bloomingdale's. ... Brands and luxury standard. Since Ralph Lauren's first brand, Polo Ralph Lauren, was launched, the company has expanded to include a variety of luxury brands such as Polo Golf, Polo Denim, Polo Sport. You can buy cheap Ralph Lauren Clothing at Ralph Lauren outlet.Also We provide polo shirts
Ralph Lauren polo shirt, 50% OFF! polo ralph lauren outlet online is your best choice!In 2006, polo ralph lauren outlet became the first designer in Wimbledon's 133-year history to create official uniforms for the tournament. As part of this year's event, which starts next week, polo ralph lauren sale will introduces the first ... determination to maintain and enhance the values for which our two brands are famous throughout the world. The rugby ralph lauren brand brings to Wimbledon the look of timeless elegance, drawing on our rich history and traditions

8/08/2010 08:29:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Google