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*Culture War, Class War: Occupy Generations and the Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths”* (2013) by Michael Adzema. Free. Downloadable. Complete book.

Complete and Downloadable, with my compliments. **Culture War, Class War: Occupy Generations and the Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths”*   (2013)  by Michael Adzema, Book 1 in the Return to Grace Series.

Also by Michael Adzema

From the Return to Grace Series:

Culture War, Class War: Occupy Generations and the Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths.” Volume 1. (2013)

Apocalypse Emergency: Love’s Wake-Up Call.Volume 3. (2013)

Apocalypse NO: Apocalypse or Earth Rebirth and the Emerging Perinatal Unconscious. Volume 4. (2013)

Wounded Deer and Centaurs: The Necessary Hero and the Prenatal Matrix of Human Events.Volume 5. (2016)

Planetmates: The Great Reveal.Volume 6. (2014)

Funny God: The Tao of Funny God and the Mind’s True Liberation. Volume 7. (2015)

Experience Is Divinity: Matter As Metaphor.Volume 8. (2013)

Falls from Grace: The Devolution and Revolution of Consciousness.
Volume 9. (2014)

Prodigal Human: The Descents of Man.Volume 10. (2016)

Psychology of Apocalypse: Ecopsychology, Activism, and the Prenatal Roots of HumanicideVolume 11. (2018)

Back to the Garden: The Psychology and Spirituality of Humanicide and the Necessary Future.  Volume 12. forthcoming

The Necessary Revolution.  Volume 2. (forthcoming)

Primal Return: Renaissance and Grace.  Volume 12. (forthcoming)

Primal Renaissance.  Volume 13. (forthcoming)

From The Path of Ecstasy Series:

The Secret Life of Stones: Matter, Divinity, and the Path of Ecstasy.   Volume 1. (2016)

Dance of the Seven Veils I … Primal/Identity Psychology, Mythology, and Your Real Self … Adult to Toddler.Volume 2. (2017)

Dance of the Seven Veils II … Prenatal/Perinatal Psychology, Mythology, and Your Divine Self … Infant to Prenate. Volume 3. (scheduled 2020)

Dance of the Seven Veils III…Periconceptional/Transpersonal Psychology, Mythology, and Your Original Face…Cellular to Soulular. Volume 4. (scheduled 2021)

Return to Grace, Volume 1
MICHAEL ADZEMA


Copyright © 2013 Michael Adzema
All rights reserved.
ISBN-13: 978-1492864028


To “My Generation” and to Occupy movements everywhere in the world.
.
.
CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION
Acknowledgments
Culture War Is Class War Disguised
xi
1
5
Chapter 1
Smoke, Lies, and Revelations — 1950s Through 1970s
7
Chapter 2
Matrix Aroused — the Sixties
24
Chapter 3
Drugs and Generations, Opposing Worlds — WWII, Fifties, and Sixties Generations
32
Chapter 4
Drugs and Generations, Concocted Worlds — Gen X and Millennial Generations
52
Chapter 5
The King Won’t Die — An Aborted Changing of the Guard
73
Chapter 6
Culture War Allegory
89
Chapter 7
Cultural Rebirth, Aborted
100
119
Chapter 8
Creating an American Mind
123
Chapter 9
Creating an American Life
137
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Erosion of Reason, Self-Confidence
Reality Transplant, the Media
Only the Game Remains
The Great American About Face
Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago?
Money Madness
The Fall of “Obvious Truths”
Notes
About the Author
158
179
189
202
213
238
264
274
308
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
.
I wish to acknowledge the love and support of my wife, Mary Lynn Adzema. Truly her thoughts are threaded into everything I write and elevate the tapestry of words everyone sees.
I am grateful for the help of my history mentor at Sonoma State University, Peter Mellini, who, in 1993-1994, was in on and gave input into the earliest drafts of Part One of this work. I want to thank Rob Sydor and Occupy Eugene for the use of the cover photo. I want to thank all those on Facebook and Twitter who interacted with and provided input on every part of this book, from text to cover, over the last two and a half years as I posted and shared its parts. The final work is much better for the thousands of minds that have thought it with me.
Finally, I wish to give a shout out to my family. I want to mention my Dad, Joseph Adzema, who inspired my work ethic and attention to detail and taught me the value of things. I am grateful to my Mom, Margaret Adzema, who demonstrated how a family could stay afloat and happy in any financially inclement weather and taught me the value of feeling and emotion. I especially want to express my love and appreciation of my brothers and sisters, Joseph Adams, Mary Ann Lewis, Chuckie Adzema, Peggy Pritchard, and James Adzema. They are responsible for my sense of fundamental belonging and provided me the experience of my first “union.” Surely, from them I learned the meaning of we’re all in this together and that what we do, we do for all and everyone.
.





INTRODUCTION
CULTURE WAR IS CLASS WAR DISGUISED
Class War is disguised as Culture War. The 1%especially the wealthiest of them, who have been termed the Filthy Rich — foment Culture War among the 99% to distract and cover their real economic motives.
Culture War, Class War explores the resulting cultural divide and how it was instigated and kept alive for fifty years in America by certain elite powers and how and why they chose to benefit while tearing families in two and keeping America paralyzed.
Of course, class war has been going on since the beginning of civilization; it is inevitable with hierarchical societies.
But some eras are more harmonious than others. One might think that enlightened principles of democracy, freedom, and human rightsnormally associated with Western societies in recent centurieshad made modern times one of them. One would be wrong.
While the rise of unions in the early decades of the Twentieth Century and the post-Depression initiation and expanse of programs to benefit the common good might have made the America of the Forties, Fifties, and to some extent, Sixties, one of them, that trend in America and that era of relative class peace has been totally reversed. Hostilities have resumed since the Sixtiesespecially beginning in 1971until currently there is all-out class war that is becoming increasingly bloody and one way or another is taking a toll in lives of the American people.
Culture War, Class War is about how that reversal happened and what has transpired in the last Fifty years to bring us to this crisis. In particular it focuses on the story not told about that — the story the 1% has made sure you would not hear.
This book looks into why America’s “privileged class”its “royalty,” “blue bloods”started a “culture war” against the middle class, working class, the poor … and the educated, artists, and humanists … in the early 1970s. We discover how their fear of Sixties activism panicked them into an all-out assault against elements that threatened their wealth and privilege in all institutions of American societymedia, education, medicine, government, politics, publication, religion, especially higher education, and so onand restructured them for their ends.
We see how this culture war/class war continues today: blatantly so in the Tea Party movement, the Republican Party, the Wall Street giveaways at the expense of jobs, tax cuts for the “filthy rich” and corporations, budget battles and cuts in government services and entitlement programs, rampant anti-environmentalism, and anti-minority, anti-immigrant laws and attacks.
For example, we see rabid culture war/class war in the abortion debate; attacks on unions in Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, and many other states; ever shrinking civil and human rights, including the suspension of habeas corpus signed by George W. Bush; assaults on voter rights; runaway imprisonment of minorities and free-thinkers through egregious anti-drug and anti-sex/anti-gender laws; indefinite imprisonment without trial and torture of political prisoners; ongoing budget, debt, and tax battles; and much, much more.
We saw it in 2010 with politicians like Congressman Barton who kowtow to corporations shamelessly defending British Petroleum from having to pay for its atrocious oil spill. Culture war, class war was visible to all in the candidacyRepublican of coursefor the Arizona Senator’s race running on a platform of doing away with Social Security and Medicare.
We have seen it since 2010 in the all-out attack on the poor and middle class by the wealthy 1%, who succeeded in getting an additional half trillion in tax cuts at the end of 2010 from President Obama and have been using that money to take away free speech and democracy by clubbing their critics mute in the public arena of discourse and orchestrating the legislative and electoral processes. And we see the fight back from the grass roots in the form of the Wisconsin union uprising and the worldwide Occupy movement. There has been an Arab Spring and an American Autumn to get or restore those basic human rights and move toward economic justice in societies around the globe.

One of the biggest recent battles in that class war was waged in the U.S. presidential election of 2012. The 1%, having gained an unfair advantage to use their vast wealth unrestrainedly to further their ends electorally, had managed to pollute the electoral process so much that one of its most visible membersMitt Romneywas able to be one election away from being the most powerful person in the world. Almost one half the American people somehow did not see how that would be a Waterloo for the forces of the 99% and they were okay with that happening. To make things worse, this came on the heels of the one percent’s ongoing effort to dial back the ninety-nine percent’s ability to have a say in their governing with fantastical redistricting outlines and by limiting and harassing voter participation throughout the U.S. with draconian registration requirements and purging of voter rolls. The fact that Mitt Romney lost is in indication of the “fall of obvious truths” that will be discussed in the latter part of this book and which is the hope abundant in the advance of generations.

Still, the never ending budget battles— which included, incidentally, a shutdown of the U.S. Government because the Republicans do not want to allow health care coverage in America (Obamacare) — and the filibustering and gridlock in Washington during the Obama years on virtually all legislation needed for American advance indicated that the Romney battle, though won, did not end the war.
And we all know what happened in 2016, when a worldwide cartel of billionaire oligarchs headed by Russian President Vladimir Putin, and in collusion with moneyed interests in the United States, was able to put into power the billionaire puppet Donald Trump. The culmination of all the voter suppression, redistricting, and voter registration manipulation previously, and now employing a massive hacking and misinformation campaign, was that the 1%, through Trump, was able to hypnotize a huge swath of the American population that their middle and working class interests would be advanced by a person born into money, who had displayed anything but a nature of largess, let alone compassion, previously.
They managed to convince a goodly number that an autocratic personality, who gloried in surroundings of gold, would somehow benefit *their* pocket books. They somehow orchestrated the media to convince many that an ostensibly authoritarian (“You’re fired!”) and acknowledged sexist personality would benefit their freedom and human rights. And that someone who advocated nuking Iran, and using nuclear weapons with North Korea would somehow be better for peace. This book will help you to understand how they were able to pull off that major accomplishment, after having fertilized the minds of Americans with lies, in a full out and conscious assault, since 1971.
Indeed, then, this one-time “cold war” between the 1% and the 99% — begun in the Seventies — has heated up fast. Let us start by looking at its beginnings.


PART ONE
CULTURE WAR — TRUTH AND GENERATIONS
 


CHAPTER 1
SMOKE, LIES, AND REVELATIONS — 1950s THROUGH 1970s
I was born just before the collapse of certainty and traditional truths in America during the 1960s. Culture War, Class War is far more than my story, however. I can say I watched the developments that this book unveils and that I was an avid participant in many of its events. But this is America’s story, America’s untold story. I could not have witnessed all the things that are brought out here, nor could anyone. For much of this was hidden, and that is the first point.
But what is also here is much that many people have seen. But much of it is not remembered. It is discouraged from being thought about, because it is a reality inconvenient to those who orchestrate events. This book reminds us of truths we should not forget.
But when brought to mind, these truths lead to obvious conclusions. This book sheds light on these “inconvenient” but obvious realities of America’s past and present. We begin in the past, the 1950s in America.
Politics, Truth, and the Furious Market in Enlightenment Lobotomies
For many the Fifties, with the Cold War as the backdrop, was a time of confusion. The traditional bellwethers for morality and behavior had been undermined from several fronts. Honesty and truth had been — since the McCarthy era of the early 50s — shaky, uncertain, and vulnerable. With the rise of the power of huge corporations during this period, and with competition and profit rapidly eroding all values and making truth the servant of the (always hidden) agenda, truth and honesty were the first of life’s pillars to be invaded and occupied. While it was gradual, secretive, and so went largely undetected, some astute observers were not fooled and even tried to warn the nation.
Dark Visions, Dire Warnings
Books were written in the Fifties about the changing values influenced or directly the result of the amassing of power in these huge corporations. These exposes increased in number during the early Sixties: Organization Man (1956) by William Whyte; David Riesman’s The Lonely Crowd (1950); C. Wright Mill’s trilogy on power — The New Men of Power (1946), White Collar (1951), and The Power Elite (1956), along with his obviously relevant Character and Social Structure (1953). Books like Erich Fromm’s The Sane Society (1955) and Presthus’s The Organizational Society (1963) made arguably more serious criticisms that the psychological map of Americans were being negatively affected in important areas.
Prophetic, prescient presidential address
The most significant warning came from the President of the United States who had presided over this post–World-War-Two rise of corporations. Dwight D. Eisenhower, in his final televised address to the nation before leaving office, warned against the power and influence of the military-industrial complex.1
Prophetic and prescient, his words — often quoted over the decades since — included “we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex….”
“Resistance is futile”
With Americans caught between opposing evils of confusion and anomie, on one side, and being assimilated by corporate culture (“resistance is futile”), on the other, many suffered through, or clung to traditional ways, especially the elderly, and ignored the assaults on the credibility of these institutions over time.
There was an astounding era of unity and enthusiasm during the Kennedy years, where corporate culture was subsumed under lofty ideals, which included both technological advance — and thus harnessed corporate energy in a positive direction — and social and intercultural advance, as for example with the Peace Corps. Fragmentation and anomie were forgotten as America believed it was involved in higher causes emanating out of the times that seemed powerful enough to propel everyone into the future with all the fragmentation following and somehow working itself out eventually.
The dream is over
When President John F. Kennedy was murdered, arguably by the Mafia but either in collusion or under pressure from powers aligned with that military-industrial complex of which Eisenhower spoke, the floor fell out from beneath aspiring Americans, leaving them empty, directionless, and therefore vulnerable.
Almost immediately after JFK’s murder, Johnson escalated the war and funding for it. America had its first coup, its first massive cover-up and Big Lie. Republicans would take over soon enough and over the next forty-six years would hold onto Executive Power for all but seventeen years, including Johnson’s five years. The tendencies that began in the Fifties — involving the gathering of power into fewer and fewer hands, and the use of that power to influence the beliefs, ideals, and even psychology of the masses — increased and became more severe, pervasive, and threatening, up to the point of the outright lunacy and obvious deceptions and manipulations that were evident under George W. Bush.
Only at that point, with year after year throwing up scandals, corruptions, misgovernment, several stolen Presidential elections, an unnecessary war, runaway deficits, and most significantly, right from the start, another massive transfer of wealth upward to benefit that small elite and increase their power, were Americans finally beginning to open their eyes to the ways they had been lied to, used, and robbed by the rich and powerful. It took all that, which played out on the media nightly, year after year, with no recourse even for impeachment because of an ill-timed agreement between the parties about impeachment that had come out of the debacle of the impeachment attempt on Clinton, to create the cracks in the Matrix, or web of Big Lies built up over nearly fifty years. So that finally an authentic man, a man not of the powerful elite, could win the Presidency handily.
The face of mine enemy, 1984
However, before that last event and over the course of those decades Americans saw essentially the rise of a one-party government, a consolidation of the mass media and its subservience, along with the government’s, to that same small group of people and powers, aligned with the huge corporations and serving their interests for profits and for enrichment of the already filthy rich. With most powers and most institutions, including education and publishing, orchestrated to the ends of a mighty few, there existed a pervasive — however very slick and clever — propaganda and cover-up apparatus constantly at work to fill or bend the minds of Americans along lines not in their interests, but rather those of these hidden powers with their corporate and political fronts. So pervasive and overwhelming was this effort at mind control and misinformation that it mirrored that of the Soviet Union during the Cold War.
Since it provided no comfort, motivating people through the strategic use of terror and the incitement to hatred, it left that aspect wanting and many people — pushed to desperation and irrationality because of the continual terror and hatred campaigns — ran to traditional religions or clung feverishly to any one of the many alternatives offering easy one-stop full-service truth — whether evangelical, political, ideological, or traditional.
Enlightenment Overthrown (No Smarts for YOU!)
In this context at no time was there an opening for the kind of rational or thoughtful, peaceful and considered pursuit of truth, insight, or enlightenment that had characterized the eras that had actually led to the birth of America and its system of democracy, freedoms, and rights. By this I mean that since 1973, there was little room in America for any of the elements that characterized the Reformation, the Renaissance, the Age of Reason or Rationalism, or the Age of Enlightenment — whose adherents and tenets spawned the American experiment.
Can’t have liberal arts, it’s got the word “liberal” in it
Indeed, I personally observed the downfall of the ideal of education in the liberal arts. A liberal arts college education had been regarded, since the birth of America, as a preeminent basis for further education and for life and career in general for those who would be among the educated and eventually the leaders and decision-makers of society.
Its ideals came directly out of the Enlightenment and Renaissance ideals of a well-rounded, diversely educated, and broadly knowledgeable individual and citizen. It was wisely considered that such broadly knowledgeable and broadly thinking leaders would benefit society in the wisdom, social consciousness, and moral conscience, indeed, selflessness, and social service ideals that would be part of that kind of exposure to diverse views.
But the Vietnam War had seen increasingly larger degrees of complaint, criticism, resistance, and defiance to its pursuit from these liberal arts campuses. I was on campus and was part of it. I also saw how the campuses were purged of the liberal thinkers — professors were fired, departments of philosophy, religious studies, history, and the other liberal arts were cut back, often to be eliminated entirely. It had become clear to the people at the top that they could better manipulate the masses without free thinkers in the way. They did not want smart people noticing, that’s for sure.
We stormed the administration building and found the documents — the letters from wealthy benefactors and alumni
The Vietnam War protests brought the suppression/repression out in the open. They actually fired professors on my campus, not because they were radical or speaking out against the war, but because they were cutting back departments that had anything to do with the humanities — even the social sciences, religious studies!!! … anything that involved encouraging students to be independent thinkers or to learn anything different from the elementary and secondary school propaganda we had been taught before.
Students at my university stormed the Administration building and found the documents — the letters from wealthy benefactors and alumni insisting on this change or they would stop their funding. This was a concerted effort by the wealthy elite that hit all the liberal arts institutions/universities in America at the exact same time—the spring and summer of 1971. We gathered in front of the Administration building and demanded the Dean appear and answer to the charges and respond about the documents, as a condition of our leaving the building. He showed up, and standing on the steps of the building he sheepishly mealy-mouthed his way through his responses to our evidence. He never denied it.
Afterward, some students chipped in (what little they could) to pay for some professors to continue teaching the next semester. We could not use any facilities; we sat on the grass, outside. Of course, we could not afford to continue to do this; nor could the profs get by on the $1 — $25 voluntary donations!
The result was that the Sixties Generation was the last educated generation. The result was that free-thinking generations would no longer be. They would not be encouraged; they would not be fostered; they would not be tolerated; they would not be allowed.
People like to dismiss efforts such as mine and those of my cohorts at this time as trying to dredge up the battles of the Sixties, to relive or redo the past. This ignores the fact that this battle has not gone away at all but is simply being ignored … and consciously dismissed. It is as much here as 200,000 people were there in Wisconsin not long ago, though the media ignored and dismissed that in keeping with their insidious obedience. It is as much here as that we are currently surfing the tsunami of a WORLDWIDE OCCUPY movement addressing all the issues of this culture war, class war. Meanwhile the media exaggerates every Tea Party twitch involving handfuls or at the most hundreds of people and broadcasts far and wide every trivial pronouncement coming from their gang of cartoonish figures.
So yes, we are still fighting this culture war. For not only did it never go away, not only has our side not been heard, not only has the other side pounded our positions into rubble; and shouted down, ridiculed, slandered, and misconstrued our points to their own malevolent ends, but …  We ain’t won yet!
Filthy Rich, Nobility, Peasants, Slaves
And before the corporations there were the rich of other economies — the filthy rich nobility that kept the peasants as virtual slaves.
The point, I guess, is that we are all taught something quite different about America, from kindergarten on up. So since it is all untrue, I wonder how different it is from the brainwashing and propaganda that we heard that totalitarian societies engage in, especially the Communists in the Soviet Union that were used as examples for most of my life.
But is it corporations that do these things, the enslaving? Let us say it exactly so we can pinpoint who are really the actors. Is it not the people who own/run the corporations? So, that, in my opinion, makes it what one network (CNN, I think) who did a documentary a couple years ago on the obscenely increased wealth and power of this class (occurring during the Bush Administration) termed “the Filthy Rich.” I think it is high time we started being specific about who is running America into the dirt.
White-Collar Slavery and Rat Racing
At the same time, it was deemed a good idea to train people for corporate niches that were becoming increasingly complex.
So liberal arts ideals were bulldozed away to make room for the career tracks leading directly into positions in management, medicine, law, and many new and highly specialized niches — usually the kind of specialization that would not occur until the postgraduate years, or after graduation directly on the job. I’m talking, for example, about such tracks as international finance and the like, where formerly the major would have been the more broadly encompassing and social-science-related study of economics.
Students were no longer taught the great ideas of the millennia, ideas that had stood the test of time and influenced numerous societies and nations and individuals. Rather, if corporations were seen or heard to be needing, say, people knowledgeable in inter-managerial, mid-corporate, communicative intercourse and response, well entire four year programs were built around that. Add that kind of narrowly focused citizenry with its ephemeral knowledge and you have the kind of population that will do the bidding of the overseers and be happy for their fat paychecks — until their narrow niche of “knowledge” becomes obsolete because of the development of a new way of approaching or handling things, equally as ephemeral, but more efficient or something, and itself to become outmoded eventually.
Slaughtering Smart Folks
They will be happy for their paychecks, not knowing of any higher ideals than greed and accumulation. They will not know of their manipulation, would not know of the historical predecessors to it or the like. They would not have training in original thought but rather in training in decided upon processes and procedures and the jargon accompanying it. So they would become rote learners of narrowly applicable and short-lived “knowledge.” This would remove the educated class as a barrier to any kind of totalitarian efforts.
So we can consider ourselves to be better in America. For totalitarianism — as, for example, under Stalin, Mao, or the Khmer Rouge — is usually accompanied by the slaughter of the educated. In my own lifetime, in Cambodia at least one million were killed wantonly, anyone with education was slated for death.
Enlightenment Lobotomies
But in America, we are better because we just seduce folks away from higher aspirations of the soul to the lower base impulses that are satisfied with what money can buy. The corporations buy their talent and their potential for high achievement and all the rewards that come with rich lives of insight and personal growth. In exchange for their moneyed positions they receive an enlightenment lobotomy.
Should people feel dissatisfied — as we psychologists and liberal arts thinkers know they will sooner or later — others of their kind who took the medical or pharmaceutical tracks have conveniently produced the sedatives, palliatives, and opiates to keep them numb. I guess you could say these are the “breathing holes” that Kurt Cobain talked about. They may put you in a jar, but they’ll give you “breathing holes,” and you’ll think you’re happy, he sang.2
1984 Comes to America — Slick, Gradual, and Perfect
So this look into American history notices a decades-long and increasing suppression of truth.
Since Kennedy’s time and because of the Vietnam War protests, I have seen an increasing web of deceit cover this land. I have witnessed things with my own eyes that have been changed when reported to the country and written into history books. I have watched the 1984 of George Orwell creep into America unnoticed — slick and gradual and perfect — as only the best minds, paid handsomely by the people with the wealth, can concoct.
American Dictatorship
A well-regarded book about Bush’s America published shortly after George W. Bush left office, and tallying the actions and events of the W’s eight years, concludes without equivocation that America had become a dictatorship.
I believe that to be true. But even if it did not rise to that level, whatever it did rise to did not happen overnight and just because of one administration. Bush’s dictatorship was the end result of the slick suppression of truth and manipulation of the masses that had its roots in the Fifties, took the helm after killing Kennedy, and went into all-out war stance when confronted by the backlash of the educated in the late Sixties and very early Seventies.
Truth’s Solitary Journey
As for what follows from here in this narrative: This is the story of one person’s informed take on those times. This is the perspective of one person intimately involved in those times. For, Forrest-Gump-like, I found himself caught up in all the major trends over the last sixty years either through first-hand observation or through the fact that as a writer and avid follower of the events of the day — in an era that seemed my whole life to be peppered with national and international surprises and upheavals, some positive; others mostly not — I could not look away.
In particular, it is the story of my quest for truth during those times. Through a coincidence of birth, genetics, and upbringing, and because in general a quest for truth requires too much time involvement and is usually not a higher priority over things like family and community, my quest for truth, foregoing family, wealth, and community ties, was unusual for my times. I found few fellow travelers. In my quest for truth, I could feel, and was quite carried along with, the ebbs and flows of the tides of my times.
I had a life different from most — one which took me to live, to study, and to participate with groups and in places around and around the country for forty-odd years. Many of these groups and places and the activities and thinking of them would be considered exotic or alien to most Americans. And when folks heard about these developments, for the average person it was something that was happening far away from them with people they did not know … and was on top of that reported to them in a way to distort and misinform.
I, For One, Can Tell You Why We Stopped Building Nuclear Plants in This Country … I Helped Make it Happen
So many of the events of my life would not be well known, although some of the things I was involved in had major influences on our country. For example, the cessation of the building of nuclear power plants in the early Eighties. Not many people could tell you why or how that happened. I was one of the people involved in bringing that about. I was not one of the major players up front. But I was involved full-time over a couple year period that led up to the events that stopped nuclear power construction to this day. I can tell you what happened.
What is instructive is that at least one of the other persons involved once tried to get the story of what happened published. He was not a writer and nobody cared to publish the story. It is one of those stories that you will only hear from our opponents and for most people it will have been chalked up to some confusing, mysterious, and random events. It was not.
No Nukes is Good Nukes
The cessation of nuclear plant construction was something that was desired, worked for, and hoped for by people who knew the dire consequences of nuclear energy and understood the motives of the people behind nuclear energy who had no concept of that, or conscience. Keep in mind this all happened long before Fukushima happened, just as we predicted something like that would.
To put one leg of this narrative on terra firma I can tell you this at this time: Peter DeFazio, Democratic congressman from Oregon, was one of the players. This happened just before he won his seat; and if memory serves me it was one of the reasons that he won. He was one of the people who came in at the conclusion to play a critical role.
He was my neighbor at this time, too, living in the house across the street from me, in Springfield, Oregon. I personally canvassed him at his house on this issue for the organization I was working for which was tackling this problem, Oregon Fair Share. We had a nice talk about nuclear and other issues. He contributed and was a member of our organization. He is a very, very good man.
I rarely heard of him on TV in the twenty-five plus years since I left Oregon. He is one of the people who would tell you the truth, so obviously he would not be one of those speaking to you on TV. Interestingly, I have seen him on TV a number of times since Obama took office. I don’t consider it to be coincidence in either instance
Comfortable Ignorance of Grade-School Propaganda Gone Forever
As for my life and my quest, I can tell you that the pursuit of truth is a solitary journey. But, as I have alluded, I have an unusual and particular personal history in childhood that turned me a particular way. I also have a very common set of experiences in growing up that led me to the average American’s thorough belief in the transcendence of America, its superiority as a nation and a form of government, and as the leader of the free world, based on individual rights. I was brought up believing that freedom of the press and the other rights and institutions — such as shared powers in government, a balance of powers — gave our country a foundation to provide like no other the discovery and the reporting of events most closely in alignment with the facts, the actual truth. That is the way I was taught; I had no basis or evidence to believe otherwise.
So Much for Being Comfortably Dumb
However, when I had my first personal experience with a major national lie at the age of nineteen — one that involved an obvious collusion of State Department, Department of Defense, and all the major newspapers in America — I was shaken. When I saw that one day later all the local media followed up by headlining stories that further misinformed and that nowhere was the truth ever reported accurately of what one million people experienced on a day that would go down in history, anyway, but “censored,” I was further changed.
Indeed, I have checked the history books and they tell the story of what I saw with my own eyes inaccurately, following the newspaper reports, which followed the reports from unknown sources in the Department of Defense. Even the idea that anyone would take the Department of Defense’s version of the largest anti-war demonstration in history as the basis for the story of that day is telling.
Then I was to find out that the story of that day and its coverage was bigger in some arenas than it should have been. Howard K. Smith lost his job at ABC over the telling of the truth of that day. People remember him from the PBS channel. Some of us who are older remember that he was one of the major anchors at ABC.
What would cause such a precipitous event as his firing? Well, it had to do with the fact that ABC news was scheduled and fully prepared to do dawn to dusk coverage of Moratorium Day on November 15th, 1969. One million people flooded into Washington, D.C., the largest gathering for an event, save Woodstock, in American history, and for the purpose of stopping a war. Mom, Pop, and the kids and the students came from all fifty states. The buses were lined up and I personally saw buses that came from the West Coast, from Wisconsin, from Washington State, and so on. It was phenomenal.3
If a Million People Appeared in DC, and the Media Didn’t Cover It, Did It Really Happen?
Well, before coverage could begin over at ABC, as it turns out, word came down from “on high,” meaning outside of the news department. People like to say that it does not matter who owns a media outlet, like, say Rupert Murdoch now owns the Wall Street Journal. They say editorial policy is not affected by who owns it.
Well that day whoever controlled and owned ABC decided that their personal interests were going to be hurt by showing a gathering of that many people amassing against the war — one out of every 200 people living in America managed to personally show up, how many more would have come if they could, how many more would be at home watching and would be stirred and influenced by such a sight?
When Woodstock saw such numbers it was talked about in the media and it became history.

Media Masters
But the people who pull the strings in this country pulled the strings at ABC that day and changed what would be reported as history. And it would be a lie.
As for the News Department at ABC having independence: Well, Howard K. Smith, veteran and senior news reporter at the time, was so incensed and so insistent on finding out who and how and why this coverage was changed from dusk to dawn to practically nothing that it led to his dismissal. If he was angry about it, angry enough to get fired over it, can you not imagine that the entire News Department was against the change?
Where’d Wisconsin Go?
While this is history not news, it is current news as well … though we cannot call it “headline” news for reasons that have to do with the media. Something disturbingly similar happened more recently regarding media coverage of the Wisconsin pro-union rallies. While the largest rallies in Madison, Wisconsin history were going on — an estimated 100,000 showed up on one day, 200,000 people a week or so after that — hardly anything about them was mentioned in the mainstream media.
Tea Party Patsies
Keep in mind that this same media has covered and continues to promote and “tout” (even) rallies of (often paid) Tea Party proponents attended only by crowds in the HUNDREDS!
Convenient (For the “Filthy Rich”) “Truth”
So who determined what would be the truth that day. Well, it certainly was not news reporters.
The story is only that it came from “on high.” I guess from that you can discern that ownership made the decision that day; and we have no idea how many other times it has done that. We can only conclude that just the threat of interference will keep the media in line with the interests of ownership.
We Decide, You React
We can only conclude that when senior people, household names, are fired on the spot, that it sends a message that only grows stronger with the years, especially as ownership will make the decisions behind the scenes as to the kind of reporters it will even have working for them.
Rather Hear from Dan?
By the way, a more recent example of such a thing happening has to do with the dismissal of Dan Rather. You’ve probably heard the ownership’s slant on that story. You should listen to Mister Rather tell the story some time. It is quite different from the “official” version.
President Al Gore. Sorry, I Was Dreaming About a Democratic America
Dan Rather’s version, if it had not been undermined, might have led to Al Gore, not George Bush, getting the Presidency in 2000 (even with “filthy rich” and Supreme Court support at that time to begin “installing” our presidents). That is another thing to think about when you think that we have a free press in this country; or if you should think that any ownership involvement in the news has little or no consequences.
Back to my story, this incident has to do with my understanding of the truth, and of history as it relates to the media and their coverage. For on the days following what should have been one of the major events on American public record, and should have been influential in the course the war would take after that day, my belief in America’s premier role, because of its supposed rights, such as “freedom of the press,” in being the most reliable in getting to the real story and reporting events as close to actuality as humans are capable of was shattered forever. Never again would I look at a story out of the mainstream press, no matter how widely reported and/or held to be fact, without looking for the possible agendas and forces that would affect the veracity of what was being said.
Things Ain’t Bad Enough? This Leads Me to Uncover the Most Horrific, Hidden in Plain Sight, Truth of All Time
So, again, this perspective is rooted in my life experience. It rises up and out of my personal, passionate quest for truth; and it details a good deal of truth’s many aspects — personal, historical, social, cultural, political, especially spiritual, and so much more.
Unfortunately while this quest was and is personally gratifying, it led me to the most disturbing truth of all time, something widely known, something dire, something so big that most people — in keeping with the times of smoke and lies — are fearfully distracting themselves from, even at the cost of their lives and those of their children.


CHAPTER 2
MATRIX AROUSED — THE SIXTIES: HOW WE BECAME A NATION OF PUPPETS, AND THE HIDDEN PUPPETEERS
“Dirty Hippies!”
Whatever Happened to the Sixties Generation?
Whatever happened to Sixties youth? What became of the values, aspirations, ideals, and energy that manifested in those turbulent but exciting, angry but supremely hopeful years?
There was a time, after all, when the influence of the “baby-boomer” youth generation was everywhere to be found. Their activities were broadcast daily on the TV news. They were making political events. They were setting trends in fashion and style which business did its worst to copy, package, and sell — attempting thereby to cash in on such powerful enthusiasms.
Suddenly, faster than their appearance, this generation of youth faded from significance in the early Seventies. At the time, commentators were falling over each other attempting to fit a rationale to the relative disappearance of youth influence and the comparative placidity of events.
A common explanation that surfaced in those days was that many youth leaders, particularly activists, had begun being disillusioned about the effectiveness and results of confrontational politics.
Some argued that activists were beginning to “look inward” for the roots of problems or were reevaluating and seeking to come up with better ways of eliciting change. As for the less activist sectors of the youth culturethose referred to by the originally pejorative terms “flower children” or “hippies”many had moved out of the cities, often in disgust and equal disillusionment, to the countryside.
There they were reputed to be actively carrying out their “back to nature” values singly, in couples, and in communal groups. As far as the larger culture was concerned, they were invisible.
What happens to a revolution not televised:
Others have asserted that the media played a large and active part in the “disappearance” of this generation. It has been noted, for example, as simply one indicator, that 90% of youth protests were reported by the media in 1969, but only 20 to 25% were covered in 1970-71, and only 1% of such dissident activities could be found in the media coverage of 1972.
One could argue in response to this that demonstrations were becoming commonplace, so they qualified less as news as time went by. But this reasoning does not fully explain the precipitous nature of this decline, nor the resulting virtual elimination of coverage. In respect to comparable events of recent times, such a pattern has elicited the label “media cover-up.”

Killing “The Sixties”
It is therefore much more likely — and there has been evidence and published commentary to this effectthat this decline was part of a concerted effort by the media, in collusion with the threatened established sectors of society, to actively put a lid on student and youthful dissent and unrest.
Keeping the People Down
I myself have knowledge and personal experience of how a similar suppression at exactly this time was perpetrated on university campuses.
Enlightenment lobotomies … again
Specifically, at the college I was attendingFranklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvaniaand other colleges and universities around the country in 1971, wealthy alumni threatened to withdraw funding unless (1) certain faculty members, considered “threatening” to established interests, were fired, (2) certain programsconsidered too innovative, “disruptive,” or “instigative”were cut back or eliminated, and (3) certain “unorthodox,” “undisciplined,” or “publicly disrespectful” student behaviors were discouraged, suppressed, and/or harshly responded to and clamped down on.
The total remaking of society, so such a generation would never arise again
Indeed, such active “blacklisting” of counterculture figures, behavior, and values on university campuses seemed to be part of a general dictum across institutionsincluding publishing, films, TV, education at all levels, medicine and science, and the work placeto actively fight back at what was seen as dire threats to traditional mainstream valuesvalues, incidentally, that were calculated to placate the masses and keep them, as for hundreds of years, feeling nervous, unworthy, inferior, and slavish in relation to the wealthy and powerful.
Culture War and Matrix Beginnings
The Fear We Engendered in the Privileged
Some commentators speculated that established societal powers had been caught off guard by the initial fervor and tenacity of counterculture energy and demonstrations, but that toward the end of the Sixties and early Seventies there had been time to regroup.
Declaration of Culture War
A massively funded attack by “the establishment”
These established forces and economic interests began to implement a well-conceived, hugely funded, well-orchestrated, and highly cooperative counteroffensive against the new cultural values, which in their minds represented a dagger poised at the heart of their very existence.
From this perspective, then, the media’s active refusal to cover events could be seen as a small, albeit influential, aspect of a much larger efforthowever unconsciously carried outat suppression of the new values and reinforcement of traditional ones by the powerful interests that those values, if successful, either directly or indirectly put in jeopardy.
Creating a “conservative backlash”
With these considerations, it is understandable that in 1971 and 1972despite increasing unrest and demonstrations on college campuses, increasing liberalization of values among all age groups and growing liberal and counterculture political powerthere would be a number of books published and widely reviewed which, closing their eyes on all this, instead presented dubious evidence and selectively chosen incidents to make a case for a so-called “conservative backlash,” which there is no doubt the authors earnestly hoped for and fervently sought to bring about in their proclamation of it.
The same tactics are being used today to create a conservative Tea Party “movement.”
This may be seen as the beginnings of the use of “The Big Lie” as a major, sometimes the only strategy, in conservatives’ attempts to fight back against this outpouring of sensitivity to injustice at all levels.
Strong man truth — Big lies!! … big ones
As background: The Big Lie basically amounts to the idea that you can say the most outlandish thing long enough, loud enough, and from the highest pulpit, and eventually it becomes accepted fact. No doubt, its use can be traced to the earliest times of civilized history and is certainly evident in this past century in the tactics of Hitler and Mussolini, where it played crucial and primary roles.
However, its more recent re-emergence in contemporary America and its rise to the heights of skillful political brandishment came in the hands, first, of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
Later it had its most pervasive use, however awkward and skill-less, during the eight years of George W. Bush, where Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, and others took it to such moronic lengths they eventually were seen to be what they werebig lies, with no attempt to educate the public at all; but simply to cover up and to manipulate, like common criminals would.
Nevertheless, these later major uses, in fact the evolution of The Big Lie into the ONLY strategy of Republican politics, may find its beginnings in such publications as these books from the early 70s, as well as to its highly skilled, and much documented, use by Richard Nixon throughout his political career.

Creating Their Own Reality — It’s Their World, We Only Just Live In It
The Success of The Big Lie, and Its Eventual Morphing into the The Big Web of Deceit, More Easily termed The Matrix
The hidden puppeteers
Whereas Sixties youth had only their enthusiasm and their heartfelt passion to allow a world of freedom, and all the other values espoused in our Constitution, they were up against huge entrenched, and filthy with wealth, nameless puppeteers. The wealth of these puppet masters got them any support they wanted for anything.
These wealthy manipulators sensed a threat to the status quo, hearing about idealistic notions of equality, freedom, and such. But they also knew that their positions depended not on the actual enjoyment of the masses of their supposed “freedoms” but only of ordinary folks being convinced they had them.
So it was a huge threat to see masses of people proclaiming their rights and actually daring to use them. They could be slowed down in using their rights by having them violently bludgeoned by police and riled up construction workers in Chicago; they could be taken off track perhaps, by having several of them killed at Kent State; and they could be continually arranged to be misreported in the media and maligned as well. But this seemed to make them only more determined.

Paying the piper, calling the tune
Still, these puppeteers owned the media and therefore controlled what the public would be told; they were the main sources of income for universities across the country, so they controlled what would be rolled out as truth and knowledge. Ultimately they could fund politicians and speakers … and radio and TV show hosts who would speak their Big Lies. They really had all the weapons to roundly put down this band of idealists whose only weapons were truth, and righteous feeling, and passion of youth, and clarity of youthful mind.
No contest
It was no contest, especially as only one side was fully aware that they were at war. Indeed the other sidemost of themhad no inkling of the powers behind the scenes. That reality would of course be left out of the history and sociology books they had readfunded by the puppeteers of course.
Many Sixties youth even began to believe that they had lost and that most Americans were lashing back at them. This would be disheartening to many; especially to those who had seen the coming together of middle class, upper middle class, and working class to join in mass movements like the one million who showed up from all over the country to be at Moratorium Day on November 15, 1969. In this way the media had a big influence on taking the wind out of the sails of many of the youth.
Living Under the Big (Conservative) Lie
Others felt they must have been wrong because they had now, according to the media, become the enemy of those they hoped would see the wisdom of these values that basically came from them! That is to say that young radicals in general had come from middle class liberal family backgrounds. They always felt they were carrying out the values that their parents had taught them.
“First, We’ll Instill Doubt in the Masses, Thereby Creating Division”
These youth saw the country come awake to their values through massive movements like the antiwar movement and the cultural flowering, which older and middle class folks were increasingly taking on themselves. It was therefore disconcerting and confusing to be told they were actually at odds with a conservative majority, a “silent majority.” This wasn’t true, but that would not be obvious to them at the time. So, thinking the country was at odds with the actual following through on the values of their parents and the liberal worlds they grew up in, doubt was palpable.
“Next, We’ll Push Them Into Poverty, Thereby Eliminating Alternatives”
For these youth, their response, unfortunately, was to try to reintegrate with the society they had thrown behind them, but now saw as the only one possible.
“Last, We’ll Compel Obedience”
Still, this cadre of youth retained their values into later life. It became common to hear that these motivated youth decided on a strategy of playing the game to gain entrance to the positions of power and to change the structures of violence and hatred from within. To some extent they succeeded, as we see from the careers of Bill and Hillary Clinton, Al Gore, and Peter DeFazio, to give just four names of many that could have been used.


CHAPTER 3
DRUGS AND GENERATIONS, OPPOSING WORLDS — WWII, FIFTIES, AND SIXTIES GENERATIONS
Drugs and Generations
In continuing our exploration of cultural and generational conflict and the Matrix evolving out of that, it is instructive to focus on an aspect of that conflict that has burned with controversy — drug use. Since drugs affect consciousness and personality and different drugs have different effects, looking at the polar opposite views on consciousness altering substances is especially fruitful.
So for additional perspective on the topic of culture war and the processes of cultural change that have gone on since the 1950s between and because of the different generations involved, let us consider the relation between particular drugs, with each their own unique effects on consciousness, and the generation that uses them … or, one might say … between the prevailing drug use of a time and the generational culture that is created.
This chapter — “Opposing Worlds“ — deals with the World War Two and the Sixties Generations and their drug use. The next chapter — “`Concocted Worlds“ — focuses on the generations since — Generation X and Millennial — and their preferences and cultural profiles.
To begin, I present some salient facts for your consideration:
Drugs and Consciousnesses
Drug Research, Public and Private
While it is common to state that drugs act differently on different people — especially, when referring to the less-mainstream, more esoteric ones, whose effects have not been experienced by the majority of people as yet — there are some obvious generalizations that can be made. For example, we would not say that we could not comment on the effects of alcohol. Its effects on the neurochemistry of the brain and on consciousness have been fully and scientifically explored, and of course its effects have been experienced by nearly everyone in our culture. Similarly, though research on the effects of the less-mainstream drugs have not been as thoroughly explored and documented, there is, in fact, quite an extensive body of scientific and popular literature on this, especially over the last half century.
Because of the widespread drug use of the Sixties Generation, massive amounts of money have been spent to try to determine how and in what way people are affected by the substances they used. Though this research has largely been driven by a World-War-Two-Generation desire to find fault with the drugs, so that the research is biased toward looking for and of course then coming up with findings that would be considered negative, still, the research has a good deal of useful information if you can read “between the lines,” so to speak.
Alongside mainstream research there is also a considerable body of privately funded research, which is therefore less biased, as well as a considerable body of anecdotal research on drug effects. By this last I mean that there is a good deal of literature detailing what people have said they have experienced while under the influence of the various substances.
What follows is based on study of both kinds of research described above, as well as from reports by experiencers related to the author. Last but not least, it is a result of the fact that this author is a member of the Sixties Generation, born smack in the middle, in 1950, and it may be concluded that I share some of the characteristics of my generation. Enough said, or, see below.
Drug Effects — Alcohol
Alcohol numbs pain and creates a euphoric state by blotting out higher-order cerebral-cortical functioning. It reduces access to memory, diminishes physiomotor skills, blocks anxiety, depression, and nervousness.
These effects alone make it the perfect drug to create and sustain a defensive style centered on denial. Indeed, the drug can be said to “block out reality” in that one can be unaware of aspects of reality that could end up being dangerous and harmful while simultaneously enhancing the positive aspects of reality in an almost manic way. One can feel unafraid and unaware in the face of pain and danger, as well as one can feel confident and overoptimistic in terms of one’s evaluations of oneself, one’s capabilities, and the potential consequences of one’s actions.
We can say these are blocks to reality in that very often reality intervenes, through accidents, adverse social reactions, and the reevaluation of grandiose schemes afterwards “in the cold light of sobriety” in which they are seen to be unrealistic in that they did not take into account other aspects which would prevent their success.
There have historically been entire generations (see below) as well as individuals during any period who have kept themselves “under the influence” pretty much all the time, sometimes considering it to be the natural state. For these folks who rarely venture into that state where decisions and plans are evaluated in a sober “cold light,” we know that the effect is a blocking out of reality in that the effect of acting on the drug-influenced decisions and schemes is most often failure. It is actually disastrous, or way or the other, a good deal of the time more than would be the case following soberly decided acts. It can result in acts leading to harm to the person, to others, or to the physical or social environment.
Drug Effects — Nicotine
There are three relevant effects of nicotine: It is a stimulant, it causes an increase in heart rate and blood pressure and can cause sweating from the speeding up of metabolism. This allows it to be used to aid in working situations, where continued or repetitive action is required, beyond what a person would normally wish to do. However, it is not useful in, say, sporting types of action in that another effect of nicotine is a diminished physio-motor capacity. For example, people will sometimes complain of feelings of “wooziness” and/or its affecting one’s sense of balance, particularly if they have taken enough of the drug or are unaccustomed to it.
Nicotine can paradoxically create a depressing effect. This effect on the body can be felt as a relaxation, and sometimes, but only at its onset, as a relatively short lasting feeling of a surrounding warm numbness, which is sometimes termed a buzz. Thus a person can feel relaxed, sometimes to the point of mental depression, but simultaneously be metabolically stimulated. These effects are related to certain psychological effects of taking the drug, if it is taken in the form of smoked tobacco, as in cigarette or pipe smoking.
Arthur Janov — the originator of primal therapy and hence founder of primal psychology — has pointed out how a cigarette is the perfect breast substitute. Not only does it engage the oral sensory gestalt, but the breathing in of a warm and full air simulates the taking in of warm mother’s milk. Indeed, people who smoke have often, in psychotherapy, discovered that they have severe deprivations around nursing during the neonatal and infancy periods. The appeal of cigarette smoking, then, for these people lies in its ability to both engage and to some degree temporarily satisfy the oral craving carried over from infancy as well as to re-create both the desired warm relaxation, which the neonate or infant would have experienced if he or she would have been tenderly held and breastfed, as well as the depression/sadness that actually was experienced in infancy because the need to nurse was not satisfied.
We will see again and again this interesting pattern in drug effects, which helps to explain their appeal, in that very often they both assuage an underlying Pain as well as re-create it, either simultaneously or at different times of the drug experience. Primal and other psychologists have learned, of course, that those are the two motivations that emanate from early Pain. That is, that a person is driven both to run away from and avoid her or his Pain, yet “the body” (as it is sometimes said) pushes the person to re-create the original situation, over and over again, in what may be considered the psyche’s way of trying to resolve it. Put simply, we are psychologically designed to be forever faced with our problems until we handle them … in the case of primal pain, we stay stuck in the patterns and sensations of our past traumas until we resolve them.
A final effect of cigarette use is its ability to repress anger. Considering the above, it can be seen why cigarette smoking would be related to an “oral rage,” which is how some psychologists have described one of the emotional reactions to nursing deprivation. Stated plainly, a baby would be extremely pissed-off to not get the comforting and nourishing experience of breastfeeding that a human is biologically designed to crave. This anger remains inside, like all primal emotions, and is easily and often brought to consciousness, triggered by the frustrations of normal life, if nothing else.
However, the physical and psychological effects of sucking in a “smoke” are those of (psychologically) sucking back, or inside, one’s feelings and anger or reversing the natural push of anger which is to lash outwardly; they are also that of a kind of holding or controlling of one’s breath, which is also related to the attempt to hold back or control one’s anger in that breathing and emotions are connected (let’s not get into that just here); of replacing the urge to anger with the soothing warm intake described above, the deprivation of which (in nursing) helped to cause the rage in the first place; and, last but not least, to create a state of consciousness altered from the one of anger — one in which feelings are hazily confused and not clear and in which thinking and memory are somewhat impaired.
Drugs, History, and Cultures
Medieval Times, Drunken Adolescents at War
The Hundred Years’ War between England and France during the Middle Ages was fought by adolescents whose primary beverage was wine. In fact, there was one campaign in which England was raiding and advancing into France which turned into a precipitous retreat back to England. Because the French turned them back, stopped them? No. There was little resistance to their advance. However, they did run out of wine! Unable to acquire the needed wine in France (for what reason, I do not know), they could not continue.
History also reports that The Hundred Years’ War was ordered and commanded, oftentimes, by royalty and kings in their teens, who considered a daylong, somewhat intoxicated state to be normal; and it was fought by drunken adolescents and teenagers for the most part.

911 and Phantom WMDs, Gulf of Tonkin, Pearl Harbor, Sinking of The Maine … But at the Start There Was the Wyoming Valley “Massacre”
I have mentioned how The Hundred Years’ War was fought by intoxicated teenagers. It can be added that other wars, including America’s own War of Independence were fought by inebriated soldiers. For example, “in a severe battle, General Putnam, who was almost perforated with bullets, complained most of all, that a shot had passed through his canteen and spilt all his rum….”
Moreover, major events in colonial times were brought about by alcohol-saturated actors. The Wyoming Valley Massacre, in which a handful of colonists were killed by Native Americans, was precipitous in the American’s involvement in the extermination of established Native American cultures and nations — Mohawk, Seneca, especially the Iroquois. The reaction to the “massacre” was a crusade up and around the Hudson Valley in which the Iroquois, among others, were largely eliminated from the face of the Earth. “If they surrendered, they were killed … if they fled, they were killed,” it was said of the nature of this campaign.
What is not very well known is the nature of the precipitating event, the Wyoming Valley Massacre. The true story is that while a number of adult settlers in their prime were off fighting in the Revolutionary war, a group of older, elderly, and fringe citizens gathered one night. Under the heavy influence of spirits the group riled each other up with fiery rhetoric against the nearby Native Americans.
This resulted in a hastily put together, drunken assault against their native neighbors. Naturally these elderly inebriated attackers did not fare very well in their attempt, and the Native’s response had the colonists retreating to their fort. Not everyone made it. About four were captured by Natives. It is said the stragglers’ screams could be heard that night from inside the wall of the fort as they were killed by the Native American defenders.
This “massacre” was built up and slanted against Native Americans for propaganda reasons to garner the colonists’ full-handed participation in the war, with its extermination of Native peoples, as mentioned. It was quite successful in accomplishing that. Consequently, also, the true version of the events that led to such genocide would never be related in history books. And who would ever want to believe that the formative events of great nations … or the calamitous, genocidal events of other nations … could be instigated by a rash action from a small group of idiotic old men in a full-on state of intoxication?
World-War-Two Generation, Driving — Wars and Culture — “Under the Influence”
The World-War-Two Generation grew up in a time in which alcohol use was considered fashionable and elegant. It was common and acceptable for men to carry in their shirt or coat pockets flasks of potent whiskey or other hard liquor, from which they could publicly imbibe a swallow here and there throughout the day. When the World-War-Two Generation came of age, cigarette smoking also became fashionable.
We can see evidence of both of these in the movies that were produced in the Thirties, Forties, and Fifties. Any unpleasant occurrence or announcement could be followed by “I need a drink” or “Sounds like you could use a drink.” And offering a drink of hard liquor was considered the first rite in the normal ritual of hospitality. Also, offering someone a cigarette and/or offering to light another’s cigarette were considered a normal part of genteel behavior.
Elegant accouterments accompanied these rituals as well. Ornate, elegant, and often finely crafted metal flasks were purchased and used. In the same way, elegant crystal and glass containers for holding the liquors as well as elaborate and ritually designed glasses into which the alcoholic beverages were poured were commonly owned and used in genteel culture. It was considered fashionable to have a “bar” area in one’s living room containing these liquors, each in separate crystal containers, and the glasses for serving them.
Many a conversation in the movies of the era were shown to be conducted at or near these home bars, following upon the alcoholic bonding ritual of pouring and imbibing the drink. This ritual conversational imbibing of a beverage has its analogies in the water-cooler, coffee klatch, and coffee/espresso-house rituals of other eras and subcultures.
Pointing out the normality and ritualizing of alcohol use in this era is important because it is an indication of the pervasiveness, at any time of day, of the state of consciousness — that is to say, intoxication — that this potent drug produces. Since this cultural behavior is still somewhat with us so that its anomalous quality may not be readily apparent, it may be helpful to keep in mind that current drunken driving laws of nearly all states would apply to everyone of that era involving themselves in only a modicum of that alcoholic ritual.
That is to say, those folks, imbibing only one drink, would be considered “drunk” by our standards today, and sufficiently into an altered state of consciousness as to warrant their receiving severe criminal penalties, including jail time, should they put themselves into the driver’s seat of a car.
Yet in that era, normal cultural, business, and social intercourse was often conducted in such a state. Heady decisions concerning war, peace, and everything else were influenced by this culturally accepted drug use.
World War Two, therefore, was conducted and fought by a generation who grew up to believe that alcohol and cigarettes (nicotine) were an acceptable answer to unpleasantness — whether inside or outside of themselves. Alongside this and supporting it were an attitude and beliefs that negative — that is, unpleasant — emotions and feelings were harmful and should be kept out of consciousness.
Thus, denial was the predominant defense in use; and it is no coincidence that “positive thinking” (popularized by the late Norman Vincent Peale), which is the keeping out of negative thoughts and the striving to focus always on positive ones, became such a rage near the end of their era — the Fifties, early Sixties.1
Drug Effects — Marijuana
Initially
The effects of marijuana are more diverse than those of alcohol and nicotine. Yet there are a number of things that can be said about its effects in general. The effects of marijuana are more subtle than the two drugs mentioned thus far. In fact, there are some people who cannot feel the effects of marijuana; and very often it takes several times of using it before one begins to realize its effects. Yet it is not an ineffectual or weak drug by any means.
The reasons why some people cannot feel marijuana’s effects appear to be related to their having very defended personality types, or, one might say they have a great deal of repression. The reason this would affect their ability to feel the drug’s effects are easy to understand when we consider the fact that repression of feelings of trauma would include repression of the ability to feel things in general. A repressed person is a more neurotic, more defended person; and more defended persons are basically defending against painful feelings. But feelings cannot be separated and to repress feelings of Pain means also to repress the ability to be sensitive to other feelings. Hence highly defended or repressed persons can smoke a great deal of marijuana and yet not “get off” or they may just feel feelings of relaxation.
Janov has said that marijuana acts to kind of “bend” defenses, which allows repressed feelings to surface, for those who are not in the category described above, which would include the majority of people. Since we all have some degree of primal pain, we all have defenses to being fully feeling, so the effect of marijuana for the majority of people is to open them to some of the pleasurable feelings that have gotten repressed along with the repression of Pain.
Therefore some widely noted effects of marijuana concern its enhancing sensory ability and therefore pleasure. Listening to music, being in Nature, watching a movie, or sex can all be quite enhanced and different while experienced under the influence of marijuana. Aspects of these experiences that were always there but were never noticed can be explored. One can seem to be experiencing something on many levels at once, or to be fully immersed in the experience so that aspects of it that formerly seemed more “walled off” from one can seem almost tangible in one’s ability to experience it; one can become so immersed in experience that complexities of it can be taken in and enjoyed, which one never even noticed before.2
Part of the reason for this type of effect of “pot” is that it lowers blood sugar and thus causes the normal cortical defenses to be less effective in blocking out experience. Related to this is a feeling of timelessness — a feeling of being in the Now — which can also be related to the diminished cortical functioning which is goal-oriented and related to linear time. Which brings up another effect: It reduces one’s feelings of needs to achieve or to be goal- or achievement-oriented. The sensory world is what is initially enhanced in the course of one’s experience with this drug; and the experience of the sensory world in its own right does not engage more complex, more “inward,” and more individually unique goals, feelings, scripts, dramas, scenarios, or motivations.
Eventually
Robert Masters and Jean Houston, in their book, The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience, provided an architecture of the psyche, derived from their study of the effects of LSD, that is useful in understanding what can happen eventually with continued use of marijuana. They conducted “depth soundings” of the LSD experience and discovered that there were four levels of the experience: the sensory, the recollective-analytic, the symbolic, and the integral. While marijuana is not as powerful in its effects as LSD, it has a similar effect on consciousness; one might say it acts in the same direction as LSD. In contrast to drugs like alcohol and nicotine, which serve to aid repression and to help to numb or reduce one’s perception of both inner and outer reality, both marijuana and LSD have the effect of opening or enhancing one’s awareness of inner and outer reality.
However, the effects of marijuana are complex because they do not as consistently open one to inner realities as does LSD. Pot opens or enhances one’s experience of the sensory world initially, and as long as it does just this it can be used as a drug of avoidance of painful (inner) reality just like alcohol and nicotine do. That is, one with sufficient repression and defenses can use marijuana to flee from inner pain, depression, or whatever, into an enhanced, pleasurable sensory world that does not trigger one’s pain. At this stage, only, pot can be used to defend against pain and can be psychologically addictive in providing a palliative to pain. Once again, it can do this because it serves only to “bend” not to bust one’s defenses against one’s pain.
Yet for some people this effect of marijuana changes with continued drug use. It is as if the continued “bending” of defenses can eventually lead to a “loosening” of them, and with that loosening comes the deeper level of experience described by Masters and Houston and termed the recollective-analytic. At this level, enhanced sensory experience opens the door, so to speak, to enhanced inner awareness. This enhanced inner awareness can include the awareness of the underlying motivations of oneself and others, and this is mostly not pretty.
Because the normal person is motivated mostly by past, or primal, pains or traumas and is acting out scripts or roles that are pathetic attempts to re-create or struggle with events that happened a long time ago, the normal person is not really IN the present. The person is, as the great religions have described it, in ignorance, in samsara , in dukha, and is basically unreal. The person, as humanistic psychologists have described, is inauthentic and is acting out games or scripts, which they are totally unconscious of. They have identified with these scripts, roles, goals, and motivations — the outgrowth of a completely unique set of past experiences of pain and trauma — and haven’t a clue as to their arbitrary character, let alone of the fact that other people are similarly acting out their own unique roles which are just as arbitrary and, well yes actually, pathetic.
However, pot, just like LSD, can eventually (sometimes even initially for persons who are, perhaps because they are young, or whatever, are unusually undefended, more sensitive, and more open to actual reality) open one to the horrifying perception of the inauthentic and unreal nature of ordinary social behavior. In this state of heightened awareness of the inner world of oneself and others, one perceives oneself and others as puppets or windup dolls, pathetically seeking to satisfy very old needs, which are totally irrelevant to the present context, with others who are similarly and robot-like also seeking to satisfy very different past deprivations. In common parlance, it is said that most actions of people are just “games.” So, part of the horrifying nature of this perception, on the recollective-analytic level of awareness, is that indeed people are not truly relating to each other at all, that they are like people trapped in spacesuits trying to communicate with each other through the layers of barriers between them.3
What follows from this perception is the conclusion that people are basically “phony,” or “plastic;” that life is unreal; that normal motivations in pursuit of normal social values such as achievement, status/popularity, and pleasing appearance are meaningless rituals — games — that are totally irrelevant to the true nature of one’s being or reality; and that one is trapped in this prison of unconscious scripts, with no chance of release or true perception of reality.

The “Beats” — “Phoney Baloney,” So, “YOU do it!”
The “Beat Generation” of the Fifties used marijuana and caffeine, predominantly. Their culture included the rise of existential belief, the glorification and poetification of angst, and the belief that their contemporary society was characterized by alienation, conformism, inauthenticity, and, most tellingly, “phoniness.” The normal life of the World-War-Two Generation was seen as a “rat race,” motivated by such high ideals (sarcasm intended) as “keeping up with the Joneses,” and pervasive materialism and consumerism.
Yet activism was not the Beat Generation’s response to this perceived negative social context, as it would be only a generation later. Passivism, apathy, pessimism, and defeatism were the most common attitudes expressed. This is what one would expect as a result of marijuana use.
Nonetheless, art was deemed a weapon, however impotent, with which to rail against what seemed an overwhelming, huge mainstream ignorance or unconsciousness. So the only apparent activism of that time is found in rebellious poetry, folk music, and fine arts of all kinds, especially literature, theater, painting, and some film.
Drug Effects — LSD
The preeminent researcher on the effects of LSD on consciousness is, without question, Stanislav Grof. In his many works, he concurs with Masters and Houston’s early work that the initial phases of psychedelic experience are predominantly enhanced sensory awareness. It is this type of experience that is usually related to the use of LSD as when the experience is expressed in colorful and swirling images, which has been called psychedelic art. And for many people who used LSD, the experience remained on this level of surface, enhanced sensory awareness. Thus they could use it for “recreational” purposes.
But more often with LSD people accessed deeper levels of the mind, so that the recollective-analytic (Grof calls it the biographical or psychodynamic level) is reached, as well as levels beyond it. These levels were accessed even when the drug was used “recreationally,” because of the relative potency of the drug as compared with marijuana.
So it was that while Grof and other researchers like Masters and Houston were studying the drug’s effects in controlled settings and with sessions guided by researchers who had experience with accessing deeper levels of the experience (as, for example, Grof himself), there was some degree of access of the deeper levels of the experience even by people using it in uncontrolled situations and with no guidance. It is for this reason that there were some calamities that occurred under the influence of the drug, which gave it the bad reputation that caused it to be banned. Yet for every disaster, there were many more whose experience of LSD was transformative, simply due to the fact that, even without a guide, the psyche’s normal tendency is toward growth and resolution; so, many people were able to flow with and be taken to deeper, more transformative levels of the experience.
For example, Stanislav Grof terms the third level of psychedelic experience the perinatal, meaning “surrounding birth.” It is equivalent to what Masters and Houston termed the symbolic level — the difference being due to the fact that perinatal material is initially experienced in highly symbolic ways, and it is only in later sessions with the drug that the birth material becomes more apparent. Since Masters and Houston’s research method was to study the effects of one session of the drug on over two hundred subjects and Grof’s method included its use with some individuals over a number of sessions, it is understandable why Masters and Houston did not discover the birth material laced through the encounters with their “symbolic” level.
But beyond the symbolic level the researchers concur once again, with Masters and Houston calling the deepest level integral, and describing a number and variety of spiritual experiences that can happen at that level, and Grof terming the same level the transpersonal , and presenting in exquisite detail in his works a vast array of “spiritual” type experiences at that level.
With this in mind, I wish to point out that the Sixties Generation did not know of these levels and, for the most part, were totally unaware of the research that was coming up with these typographies or architectures of the psyche, or of at least the drug experience. Nevertheless, those of us who lived through that period and either participated in LSD use or heard the stories of psychedelic experiencers can attest that transformative spiritual experiences were quite common, even when the drug was used just for the “fun” sensory part, and people also described experiences of curling up in fetal position and reliving their births, long before anyone even heard the term perinatal. As concerns the spiritual level, it was not uncommon to hear of people who saw Jesus, or who went to a place they could only describe as “heaven,” and this is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of the varieties of spiritual experiences that were had.
For our purposes here, however, it is important to keep in mind that LSD had the capacity to take one to deeper realities than the horrifying recollective-analytic one. One might say that the recollective-analytic perception is a cognitive view, an intellectual view, or an existential view, and it is certainly an alienated one; but that most of all it lacks the aspect of “the heart.” In other words, it is only when one goes deeper into the psyche and “feels” the Pain of that estrangement, or in psychedelic terms goes deeper into the actual reliving of the traumas that caused the creation of those alienating scripts (as happens on LSD when the biographical or psychodynamic level is reached; and even more so when the perinatal level is worked through, relived), that one can go beyond the horrifying reality of estrangement to a reality in which one’s “heart” is opened and one can catch a glimpse of a reality beyond the normal one — one in which we are all spiritually connected, in Love.
It is significant to point out that LSD has this capacity beyond the use of pot so we might understand the differences between the Beat Generation’s reaction to their perception of the unreality of existence, obtained in their use of marijuana, and the Sixties Generation’s quite different reaction to that perception of social phoniness, who were influenced by the use of both marijuana and LSD.
Vietnam-Era Generation — “Wow, Man!” “Just Do It” “Go With the Flow”
The Vietnam-War, or Baby-Boomer, Generation was noted for their use of a number of drugs. Marijuana, wine, “speed” (amphetamines), “downers” (for example, “ludes” or qualudes, also “reds” — that is to say, barbiturates), LSD, other hallucinogens such as mescaline, “magic mushrooms,” psilocybin, and peyote were all in use. It was a culture of experimentation in all areas, including drugs, which grew out of beliefs (following in the footsteps of the Beat Generation) that normal life/people were characterized by phoniness (plastic was the Vietnam-era Generation’s word for it), alienation, conformism, robotism, and lack of feelingness … and hypocrisy.
Though the Sixties Generation (another term used for this generation) experimented widely with drugs, their predominant drugs of choice were “pot” (marijuana) and LSD. Alongside this sort of drug use were attitudes of activism, free love, love as the ultimate value and/or as equivalent to God, pacifism in regards to the war, the valuing of openness, authenticity, “real” communication, and passion and/or feelingness, including sensory awareness or heightened perception of the physical world.
It is easy to make the connection between the spiritual access capable with LSD and the emphasis on feeling, community, communication (‘rapping”), transcendence, and sensory enhancement that characterized the Sixties Generation. On the negative side, there was sometimes apathy and defeatism, like the Beat Generation, associated with marijuana use.
Marijuana “Cocktails,” History, and Culture
Once the pot experience opens to the second level of awareness — the recollective-analytic, which is deeper and more real than the initial enhanced sensory awareness — there is no going back. That does not mean that people will not try to recapture the earlier type of experience. Very often it is at this point that the person will begin mixing the pot with other drugs, in particular, alcohol, because they will try to block out the deeper awareness with these other drugs that diminish awareness.
Indeed, we saw this happen on a massive scale in the Sixties. Initially, pot users were disdainful of people who used alcohol, calling them “juiceheads.” They were disdainful of alcohol use because they were aware that it reduced awareness and that it had served that purpose for their World-War-Two-Generation parents, who they saw as in great denial of obvious realities — about themselves and the world — as people who did not “walk their talk,” and were … a charge leveled like an arrow at the heart of the WWII Generation’s values and world … “hypocrites”! Thus, regardless the cost the one thing the Sixties Generation did not want to do was to end up like their parents; thus, the disdain for the use of alcohol.
Booze Was the “Apple” in the Psychedelic Eden
However, it is said that the movement changed, exemplified by the differences between Woodstock and Altamont. Woodstock epitomized the height of euphoric use of mind-expanding substances like LSD and marijuana, undiminished by awareness-diminishing drugs like alcohol. And Woodstock was, of course, noted for the fact that it brought together a million people for three days of peace and harmony, a model of nonviolent behavior under adverse conditions that, it was said, was never before exemplified by the alcohol or “juicehead” celebrations or gatherings of the past.
By the time of Altamont — another huge musical event held in California after Woodstock — the change was apparent. Alcohol was now being used, with the other drugs, in abundance; there was no disdain for its use; and violence and death at the event coincided with this change. It might be concluded that the “honeymoon phase,” let us say, of marijuana use had passed for many who were using it, that the heightened sensory awareness was now opening more and more people to the deeper awareness of horrifying psychological realities, which needed to be blocked from awareness by mind-diminishing drugs.
At any rate, the other response to the deeper awareness of horrifying inauthenticity that pot was revealing was for people to stop using marijuana. Indeed, a great many “potheads” abruptly discontinued its use.
And they dealt with the horrifying reality that it had revealed to them in a number of ways, oftentimes turning them into activists to change the social reality, into psychologists or personal growth facilitators to change it on the individual level; but sometimes they tried to retreat into traditional values and culture, only doing it one better — becoming “Jesus freaks,” for example; or they hid away in career and family; or they attempted to build utopian and “authentic” communities of relationship, sans pot.
Some took up the use of cocaine or amphetamine, finding that the reality that speed revealed hid the horrifying reality of pot, replacing it with an avid and manic identification with one’s roles and scripts. In fact, some used speed with alcohol, then added pot, for a “twist,” and in this way sought to regain the initial innocent sensory euphoria. As the popular song described it at the time, “Just give me weed, whites, and wine….”
Nevertheless, some people simply never had the experience of the horrifying inner inauthenticity of normal existence. Being very defended, they were able to continue to use pot for pleasure, and some of them are able to continue to use it this way to this day. Older folks — middle-aged and up — are especially well-defended and repressed in general. As Janov has pointed out, such persistent and long use of defenses against reality reinforces and strengthens them to such a point as to make them inaccessible to change. Their defenses against painful perceptions cannot be brought down by primal therapy OR pot. In common parlance, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” and older people are more “set in their ways.” So it is that when some of these, having missed the “party” during the Sixties, use pot hoping to get a taste of what they missed, they almost never experience anything but the initial sensory awareness and relaxation, that is, if they are able to experience the drug’s effects at all.


CHAPTER 4
DRUGS AND GENERATIONS, CONCOCTED WORLDS — GEN X AND MILLENNIAL GENERATIONS
Drugs and Generations
Drug Effects — Cocaine, Speed
Drugs in the amphetamine class are stimulants. This includes cocaine, methamphetamine, “meth,” “crystal,” crack cocaine, “crack,” speed, amphetamine, uppers, “whites,” and so on. They repress Pain extraordinarily well.
Building castles in the sky
They are euphoriants and cause one to have the feeling that one’s mental capacities are expanded. One feels that one can envision projects and outcomes precisely. So one expends oneself in organizing and preparing for great achievements, which rarely are embarked on.

Free from fear, reckless, overconfident, risk-taking
Since these drugs repress Pain, creating an amped state of mind more than normally able to fend off unwanted emotional material, they repress the normally present residue of fear, with its attendant caution in the face of activities outside of one’s comfort zone requiring forethought and anticipation. One does not feel constrained by normal fears or apprehensions, so one throws oneself into new activities with reckless abandon. One feels overly confident in one’s abilities and engages in all kinds of risk-taking — financially, sexually, interpersonally, legally. These activities have one embarking on dubious schemes which rarely pan out.
A land of light and darkness
Despite these negatives the corollary of this mental activity is that one’s ability to think and see more clearly on some issues is enhanced, just because one’s fears can pollute one’s perception and apprehension of things.
It is enlightening to remember that Sigmund Freud, among other notables in history, experimented with cocaine. At one point, Freud was heartily endorsing its use to his colleagues; he was waxing expansively about its benefits for mental life and clarity of consciousness. Of course, he changed his position on this later. No doubt his use led him to see its face of darkness as well.
Glimpses of clarity
Nonetheless, concerning the positive aspects of cocaine, it can be mentally enhancing partly because of its repression of fear. For fears, as mentioned, are both of the helpful-cautionary as well as the oppressive types. Being released from the oppressiveness of fears, being freed of the constraints of “fearful thinking,” can result in seeing one’s reality more clearly. Feeling fearless can lead one to acknowledging truths and realities normally defended against — thus being therapeutic even, getting a glimpse of reality outside of one’s fears.
Reckless
Being freed from normal caution, however, can lead one into reckless activities with consequences far beyond one’s ability to handle in either a normal, or drugged, state. It is no coincidence that these drugs have seen heavy usage by wartime participants — notable are their use by fighter pilots and by Vietnam warriors.
A land of empathy and insensitivity
Lastly, since these stimulants repress feelings, they can lead to insensitivity toward others. But since they can repress fear which blocks truer perception of and appreciation of others they can lead, paradoxically, to feelings of love toward others and a feeling of finally really seeing others and appreciating them for who they are, not simply in the way one has cast them (“pigeon-holed” them) to fit into one’s scripts, agendas, ego projects, or desires.
Matrix Manifesting
The Eighties
The Eighties saw an epidemic of use of cocaine. This was commonly attributed to Yuppies, which is the popular term for the Young Upwardly-mobile Professional character of this era and is contrasted with the idealistic, activist, and anti–Vietnam-War Yippies (Youth International Party, whose founder and most famous member was Abbie Hoffman).
Reagan, Yuppy-Kay-Yo-Kay-Yay
Yuppies came in at the same time as Ronald Reagan into the White House and, indeed, exemplified much of what Reagan stood for. They were seen as greedy, over-achieving, materialistic, narcissistic, and societally and environmentally insensitive careerists.

“Love is all you need” turned into “Money is good!”
They were portrayed in film; one in particular that sought to delineate the attitudes of this character type was “Wall Street,” in which Charlie Sheen plays the role of the Yuppie, mentored by the Fifties Generation character, Gekko, played by Michael Douglas. Together they give a portrayal of complete self-centeredness and insensitivity to the ways their Machiavellian strategies harm others or the environment. They are driven solely by a value that “Money Is Good!” — a slogan completely the opposite of the previous generation — the Sixties Generation — whose attitudes were expressed in lyrics like “I don’t care too much for money; money can’t buy me love” and “Love is all you need”; who bought and lived by books with titles such as How to Live on Nothing, The Greening of America, and Back to Eden; and whose most famous slogan was “Tune in, Turn on, Drop out” (or it was sometimes said, “Turn on, Tune in, Drop out” — I’m not sure anyone in the generation knew which was the “proper” way to say it).
“Me Generation”
In any case, another term used for the Yuppie Generation was The “Me” Generation. Thus it was that from the late Sixties, early Seventies (the height of Vietnam-Era Youth’s influence on society and culture) to the late Seventies and most of the Eighties — within a period of a mere decade — the prevailing, media-amplified cultural values of our society swung, pendulum-like, a hundred-and-eighty degrees from where they had been.
Matrix Manifest and The Big Lie
This change had a great deal to do with the efforts of the World-War-Two Generation — in total horror at the way their sons and daughters seemed to be reversing the values they had lived, and fought, for — to “take back” society. The WWII Generation did this by putting pressure, as well-to-do alumni, on universities and colleges across America to turn their curricula away from liberal arts and toward job-oriented curricula, and by using their positions of power in the media to influence the flow and content of the information to be fed to the mainstream public. For example, in the early Seventies, the WWII Generation’s money and power directed the press to declare that a “conservative backlash” was occurring in America, when in fact the opposite was occurring.
But eventually their “Big Lie” tactics won out so that people began to believe and then to create what they had been repeatedly told … the opposite view having, as part of the strategy, been censored in the media.1
Thus, the Yuppies were the creation of the WWII Generation in their attempt to reverse the course of society that their own daughters and sons, as “Sixties Youth,” had put it on.
Scapegoating an Entire Generation
Coinciding with and supporting the strategy just described, and because the World-War-Two Generation during the Eighties were still in their triumphant phase — a psychohistorical term meaning they were at the stage of their life in late adulthood in which they had pretty much gained control of the reins of society — they furthered their cause by managing to plant a fantasy in the collective consciousness of American culture concerning the origins of Yuppies which persists to this day.
Designer generation
In obvious denial (again, their predominant defensive posture) of the fact that they had helped to “create” the Yuppies and so of the similarities between their own values and those of the Yuppies, as exemplified by the similarities between the (World-War-Two-era) Reagan-Bush political agenda and that of the Yuppies — who indeed helped elect Reagan and Bush — yet aware of the criticism that their very own values, taken to the Yuppie extremes, was generating in the independent press as well as the negative publicity there about the cocaine use of the Yuppies, the World-War-Two Generation saw an opportunity not only to defeat but also to “get back” at their opponents, the Sixties Generation, by ridiculing them.
In the predominant World-War-Two Generation fashion of scapegoating (the accompaniment of denial), which they had been directing from the outset at the Sixties Generation (who had of course incurred the wrath of the WWII Generation by opposing and confronting them on the Vietnam War in sometimes harsh and hostile ways), the Yuppies, with their cocaine use, were portrayed in the WWII-Generation-paid-for media as former Sixties hippies who had simply grown older but — consistent with their alleged “narcissism” — were still selfish, only now, materially so, thus the appellation, The “Me” Generation.
So the Vietnam-era or Sixties Generation began being denigrated in the press with the accusation, “The ‘Me’ Generation,” and Sixties values were also denigrated — the scapegoating of the Sixties Generation continuing — despite the fact that it was a different age group in society, the younger Yuppies, who were actually the ones triggering the attack.
Opposing Worlds
The hypocrisy of the charge becomes even more blatant when considering that the values of the Sixties Generation included such selfless acts as risking, sometimes incurring, violence and personal harm, jail time, and a lower standard of living for the sake of their idealistic beliefs in peace, environmental restoration and preservation, and selfless communitarian living, among others — none of which have any overlap with Yuppie careerism, consumerism, materialism, and individualistic greedy selfishness.
Despite the success in our society’s collective consciousness of the fantasy of Yuppies being former hippies — once it had been planted in the popular culture by the WWII Generation sitting comfortably in front of American society’s steering wheel — the truth is that these Yuppies were predominantly the generation that shadowed the Sixties generation, arising as youth in the aftermath of the Sixties cultural revolution.
Yuppies — Products of the WWII Generation’s Todo List
Their values become understandable, then, in that they were in secondary schools and universities during the Seventies when the “Conservative backlash” Big Lie was being promulgated. For as I’ve mentioned at that time universities were cutting back funding from courses in liberal arts, philosophy, psychology, literature, politics and government, and the like and were turning themselves into career-factories dedicated to producing compliant business persons, engineers, physicians, and scientists who were not being educated to think for themselves but how to achieve and make money in a culture the World-War-Two Generation was comfortable with.
Yuppies — Children of Fifties Generation Parents
The values of the Yuppies are understandable, furthermore, in that they were the sons and daughters of a generation between the World-War-Two and Baby-Boomer Generations, who are rarely talked about. It is often said that the World War Two Generation was followed by Boomers and that Generation X were the children of Boomers. Nothing could be further from the truth. The generation that followed the WWII Generation and the actual parents of Gen Xers were born 1925 to 1945 and came to adulthood during the somnolent Fifties. So we might call this overlooked generation the Fifties Generation, or the Eisenhower-McCarthy Generation, or the Elvis Generation, or the Happy Days Generation … a more cumbersome but more accurate term for them would be the War-Born Generation. They have been called the Silent Generation, and this does say something about them.
They have been invisible but running things from behind the screen, since they took over conservatism and greed from the WWII Generation and upped the ante. They have been accurately represented by the Gekko character in the movie Wall Street, played by the Fifties Generation Michael Douglas (born 1944) whose protege, correctly enough, was played the by the yuppie-Generation Xer, Charlie Sheen (born 1965).2
Not So “Happy Days”: The War-Born Generation — Fifties, Eisenhower Generation
The media tends to focus on the big trends and to ignore or miss the lesser ones. The way our recent history was portrayed, you would think that just because there was a huge number of babies born in the decade and a half after World-War-Two’s end — the much discussed Baby-Boomer Generation — that there were no babies born during the War … almost as if every man in America was overseas fighting or that, when home on leave or whatever, they simply would not or could not conceive!
Marinated in the Womb of War Fears
However, of course these ridiculous notions are not true, so there is a pre–Baby-boomer Generation who happened to be born during or shortly before WWII, that is to say, between about 1925 and 1945. And the Yuppies were predominantly the sons and daughters of this — let us call it — Fifties Generation. Marinated in the womb with Great Depression and war fears and born around the time of the war, the Yuppies’ parents then had their formative adolescence and young adulthood during the Fifties.
Abandoned, overlooked, fearful, resentful, rooted in conservatism
So their beliefs are rooted in the cultural soil of Fifties conservatism, the Cold War, Elvis Presley, McCarthyism, Eisenhower, traditional religion, belief in the economic primacy of capitalism and the evil of communism, and the early “schmaltzy” rock and roll (for example, “Teen Angel,” “Leader of the Pack,” and such).
Their roots reaching deep into war fears — hot and cold, many would feel jealous and angry about the freedoms and openness of the generation immediately after them. They would, as well, heartily resent all the attention being showered on the much larger cohort of Baby-Boomers.
Yuppies, Fifties Nostalgia, Materialism
And it is the worldview of this Fifties Generation that was passed on to their children, the Yuppies. It is no coincidence that when these Gen X Yuppies were teens and young adults (mid-Seventies through the Eighties) we saw also a lengthy period of Fifties nostalgia alongside the caricaturizing and ridiculing of Sixties lifestyles, values, and beliefs. It is easy to see that the materialism the Fifties Generation members were nurtured in after World War II — as a reaction to the fear and uncertainties their parents had because of the Depression, the war, and The Bomb — would be replicated in their children.
Only the fear and uncertainty their children would try to amass wealth against was the tumult, anomie, violence, and confusion of the decade of the Sixties — the era the Yuppies would experience swirling around their roots and upsetting the stability of their nurturant years.
The Eighties Began, Ominously, with Reagan’s Election and John Lennon’s Assassination
The Eighties began, significantly enough, with the death of John Lennon and the election of Ronald Reagan. Concurrent with the epidemic of cocaine use was a manic economy, massive military expenditures, and a tripling-plus of the National Debt. It is relevant to note that the huge increase in the National Debt was caused by a tax cut for the rich, which of course benefited those of the World-War-Two Generation who either inherited or earned, with a lifetime behind them, their wealth, as well as those upwardly mobile, materialistic Yuppies. The rationale for the tax cut — which was characterized by some commentators as “Robin Hood in reverse,” because it also coincided with cutbacks in social programs — was a “voodoo economics” (George H.W. Bush’s term) with a “trickle-down” theory of investment and economic growth.
That Voodoo That They Do So Well
This economics is based on a belief that a “dollar,” metaphorically speaking, given to a rich person will be more wisely invested, creating more jobs and wealth for everyone, than will that same “dollar” given to a middle-class or poor person.
This view, however, ignored human psychology, the standard economics of marginal returns, and the common observation that, simply put, for a person with a little or a moderate amount of money, that metaphorical dollar will have more value … because it will represent a much larger increase, percentage-wise, in their financial situation … than it will for a rich person, for whom its value is only marginally related to a rather large “purse,” so to speak.
Trickle-Down Ignores Human Psychology
Therefore, common sense tells us that “dollar” will be more conscientiously and thoughtfully spent or invested, creating more jobs and wealth for all, by the moderate-income person, who of course will attempt to maximize its benefit to him- or herself so that he or she can also rise to the ranks of the wealthy. To the moderate income person that “dollar” represents an opportunity for a rise in economic status; hence it will be invested, sweated over, and monitored intensely. In general, he or she will attempt to squeeze every possible ounce of benefit out of it, very often starting businesses of their own and thereby creating new jobs, opportunity, and wealth in the process. Whereas for the already wealthy person, that “dollar” is only a dollar alongside many others, and is only marginally relevant, reaping only marginal, or minor, returns.
And Of Course It Didn’t Work, Still Didn’t Work, Still Didn’t Work.…
Voodoo economics did not work, of course, as indicated by the tripling of the National Debt. Another important indication of the falsity of its premises was the huge expenditures of money, during the Eighties, on luxury items, like yachts, works of art, expensive cars, and so on. Art items and artifacts were being bid through the roof and the prices they were going for were making headlines in newspapers and stimulating commentaries on the tube. Along with this was the overinvestment in spurious business transactions, including “junk bonds,” soon-to-be-left-unrented commercial buildings, and unwanted real estate. Much has been said about how these manic and ill-considered business transactions led to the lengthy recession of the late Eighties and early Nineties. Along with this is the connection with the Savings and Loan scandal — the S&L Scandal — which was behind the plethora of boondoggles and ill-advised investment.
The Manic Mentality and Mindless Waste
But there are two aspects of it that are especially relevant here for a discussion of drugs and generational cultures. They are the manic quality of the times — the go, go, go, buy, buy, buy mentality of the investing — and the obvious proof it gave to marginal returns theory: In other words, the money, given to the rich, was valued little and was mindlessly blown on trivialities; it was said that the Eighties was a huge party for the rich.
So rather than creating wealth for the wealthy, which would “trickle down” to the less well off, Reaganomics, as it was also called, turned into an unparalleled failure. It was called the largest shift of wealth in America’s history, taking it from the poor and middle class and benefiting the richest, top two percent of Americans.
More than that, it led to a debt that will be adversely affecting the well-being, lifestyles, and financial pictures of several generations to come.
The Hypocrisy and Materialism
Going into such detail about the intricacies and results of the economic policy promulgated by the WWII Generation, in alliance with the Yuppies and their parents, the Fifties Generation, is important because of the hypocrisy it demonstrates in the charge leveled at the Baby-Boomer Generation of being a “Me” generation and of being narcissistic. Again, we see the WWII Generation’s same tendency to denial, projection, and scapegoating.
To continue, however, other elements in the Eighties cultural arena, existing alongside the epidemic of cocaine use, was the aforementioned careerism and materialism among the Yuppies (comprised primarily of the youth in their twenties and early thirties who followed behind the Vietnam-era Generation), whose mantram was to get rich, get powerful, erect and maintain “family islands” which they saw as competitive with the rest of society (quite unlike the communitarianism of the Sixties Generation), and to retire early … social and environmental problems be damned.
The Necessary Mean-Spiritedness — Hating on the Kumbaya
Other standouts of the cultural scenery of the time included a rise of mean-spiritedness, for example, cutbacks in social programs and charities, which, as it was said, had one effect of emptying the mental hospitals into the streets. It became fashionable to sneer at and blame (often scapegoating) the more unfortunate ones of society — the poor, helpless, mentally ill, children, the powerless — making some time for that alongside of outright snickering and smugness directed at the “hippie-dippie” values and “kumbaya” visions of the generation older than them.
Generation “X”
Was Disconnected from The Sixties
The next generation to wander into the cultural limelight has been termed Generation X. Whereas Yuppies came of age during the Eighties, Generation X came into adulthood in the Eighties and Nineties. As I have been saying, Yuppies were the earliest contingent of Gen X.
Predominantly these are not the sons and daughters of the Sixties Generation as the values of the Vietnam-era Generation included marrying late and having children late so that their children are mostly younger than and not among Generation X.
This value concerning marrying or having children later in life tied in with the Sixties folks’ belief in personal freedom, but it is more closely related to the hypocrisy they perceived in the marriages of their parents, those of the WWII Generation. They not only perceived their parents’ marriages as being false and loveless, they perceived themselves as being the victims of poor parenting, wherein they felt they were not understood and were not accepted for who they were or supported in what they uniquely wanted to do with their lives.
Furthermore, they saw the social and global context as a negative and highly dangerous one. For one thing, having been children during the “drop and roll” and bomb-shelter, nuclear-shadow era of the Fifties, and having seen the assassination of idealistic values in the deaths of John and Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King during their teens and young adulthood, they had great doubts about the future of the world. Though of course the Sixties Generation is noted for its idealism and for its attempts to fight these perceived dangers and injustices, underneath there has always been for them an uncertainty that success is possible, so that bringing a child into this particular dangerous and unjust social context was seen as possibly not a good thing for the child.
Parented by a Fallow Generation
So it is that Generation Xers are predominantly the sons and daughters of the Fifties Generation as well as those less idealistic of the Vietnam-era Generation who had, more often than not, opted for the traditional route of career, home, and family and thus had started having children many years earlier than their more socially conscious counterparts.
This Fallow Generation, let us call it, would conceive the children who would be called Generation X — who are noted for their apathy and lack of distinctiveness.
But keep in mind that the Fallow Generation is not a true generation in the sense that it is composed of two age groups — the Fifties Generation and those of the Baby-Boomers who opted for a family instead of the social activism, college education, and establishing a career before raising a family decisions of their more heralded peers.
Hence Generation X’s lack of a unifying cause, value, or characteristic may have to do with their being children of parents from two different age groups and generations.
Drugs and Generations: Generation X Returned to Booze
At any rate, and understandably because they are mostly not children of the idealistic segment of Sixties youth, the drug use of Xers strayed back to the use of alcohol and cigarettes — the drugs used by their Fallow Generation parents, including the smaller number of them who were Boomers and who did not make either the cultural or drug changes of their peers. Alongside this “traditional” drug use, Generation Xers are noted for their pessimism, defeatism, and fascination with death — as, for example, in their selection of black clothes, their tendency to ripped jeans, tattoos, and the insertion of all sorts of pins and studs, as adornments, into virtually all parts of their bodies, and, in the extreme ones among them, a fascination with vampirism.
Drug Effects — Ecstasy
This drug is very similar chemically to the amphetamines. Ecstasy has an hallucinogenic aspect, which distinguishes it, however. But it more reliably elicits the opening to love for others and the favorable perceptions of others and sense of unity with them as described above as occurring for amphetamines also along with the drivenness of speed that is more characteristic of it.
Ecstasy came into use in the late Seventies and in the Eighties; and it has had continued appreciation of its effects through to the present. In fact, it is considered the drug of choice at raves — psychedelic and musical large-scale parties, which are one of the more recent generational phenomena. The growth in popularity of raves maps nearly exactly on the increasing appreciation for Ecstasy. It would be hard to view that as coincidental.
Disco Yupp
So the free love and communalism of the Sixties was superseded by a disco phase in the late Seventies. The disco phase emerged and grew immediately upon the waning of use in the psychedelics, the increasing use of marijuana as a “cocktail,” mixed with alcohol, and the predominant use of cocaine by the Yuppies and Me Generation — the early contingent of Generation X.
Rave on, Millennials!
Raves became an emerging phenomenon following somewhat upon the fading of the disco phase — a decline which occurred in the late Seventies, early Eighties. So raves were a phenomenon coincident with the rising use of Ecstasy and primarily affecting the generations following the Yuppie/Me-Generation, that is to say, specifically, Generation X and the Millennial Generation.
Baby-Boomer Echo Generation
For some reasons that may be obvious by now and until just recently, little had been said in the media about the daughters and sons of the Sixties Generation. This generation is currently in their twenties and thirties, though some are still in college and even junior and high school because of the tendency for some Baby-Boomer parents to postpone having children, often waiting till the very end of a woman’s reproductive years, just before the age of forty.
This generation has been called an “echo” of the Baby-Boomers in that just as the Baby-Boomers represented a significant population increase, conceived in the post-WWII euphoria and stability, these children of Boomers also represent an incoming population wave, due to the numbers of their parents. There was a wave of increased school attendance during the Nineties and post-millennial years. Universities more recently have been attending to their needs.
Just as in every other generation mentioned, this Echo Generation, also called Millennial Generation, shares many of the characteristics and values of their parents.
Similarly, they mirror the drug use of their parents. There was a great to-do in the press during the Nineties about the increase in drug use among the young, particularly in high school. Furthermore, in typical WWII-Generation style, the media and Republicans in Congress attempted, during the Nineties, to scapegoat Sixties-Generation President Bill Clinton on this issue of drug use.
For though during the Nineties the WWII Generation was in the process of leaving the scene, those elderly of them left were conducting a fierce rearguard battle to save what they could of the culture they knew and created. In their desperation, they risked any cost in terms of outlandish scandals, government costs, and loss of social progress and governmental effectiveness. They were helped by a Fifties Generation entering retirement with a lot of wealth who, as I have said, were extremely jealous of the attention paid to the larger Boomer generation who came after them.
Nevertheless, the truth of the matter is that the increase in drug use among the young — which significantly enough involves predominantly an increase in the use of marijuana and, as they say: LSD … It’s b-a-a-a-a-ck! — had to do with the fact that the parents of these young people are indeed the people of the Sixties who themselves experimented with these substances.
Lest I be misunderstood, I am in no way saying that parents, in general, actively teach their children to take drugs — whether we are talking about the alcohol and cigarette use of the WWII Generation or marijuana and LSD use of Boomers — yet children are influenced by what their parents do or have done, even if just in the fact that the parents are more tolerant of such usage, having done it themselves. I say this because it could be countered that even the Sixties Generation, as parents, were engaged in the public antidrug campaign. Yet when they did so they were doing it out of a fear for their children’s physical welfare, not from a severe moral perspective that these drugs are the royal road to hell or from such other paranoid attitude, as was most often the case in the parents of the other generations discussed so far.3
Politics — Activism. Values — Idealism
To return to the point, though not enough has been said or written about this “echo” generation, these are some of what has been noted about them: Beginning in 1992, with the election of Bill Clinton, the youth vote has swung back to going for the Democrats. There has been an increase in activism and idealism among the young in the last two decades, surprisingly this increase was noticed as early as when this generation was in high school and grade school. Polls done on their attitudes as children and adults showed a strong increase in their concern about social and global issues.
In fact, the issues that appeared to concern them the most have to do with racism and the environment. It is no coincidence that in the peak of their influence as young adults, there was an astounding wave of participation in Obama’s campaign, largely by this cohort, that resulted in the first African-American to attain the presidency.
This group also has fears that the future might not be very bright or as good as it was in times before them, particularly in terms of a ruined ecology due to environmental assault and/or nuclear disaster, yet they, like their parents, also are more likely to activism and taking up causes in the face of such dire possibilities.
These values of the Echo Generation are understandable, not only in that they reflect those of their parents, but also in that in the most recent decades the Sixties Generation — and indeed it would tend to be the more idealistic of them that would opt for the low pay that teachers currently get — predominates as the teachers and administrators in the primary and secondary schools that taught the Echo Generation.
The same, however, cannot as much be said of the universities, with Millennials attending, for reasons having to do with cutbacks in educational funds, the lingering success of the WWII Generation in turning universities into career factories as opposed to truly educational institutions, and, with the cutbacks in funding, the lack of job openings for Sixties Generation applicants and the resulting continued influence, bolstered by the institution of tenureship, of pre-Sixties professors — those of the Fifties and Fallow Generations, and a few remaining, very old, WWII folks.
Still, the Sixties Generation influence on these youth in college existed because of several contrary trends. The Echo Generation’s numbers swelled university attendance, requiring additional hiring somehow, whatever the funding constraints, and those of the generations preceding the Sixties Generation passed from the universities into retirement, or the beyond.
The candidates for the openings that did come about at the university level would be, not as much those of the Fallow Generation, the Yuppies, or Generation Xers, but instead members of a Sixties Generation who alone, among the generations mentioned, valued education over money and careerism. They had been waiting a long time, diplomas and experience in hand, for their chance to return to the universities — this time as the instructors and administrators — and eager to change its course back to true education, as it was when they were students in the liberal-minded Sixties.
We see the effects of this in Obama’s election and the phenomenal numbers of demonstrators coming out to fight back union attacks and budget squeezes in Wisconsin and throughout the US. Though these are not attracting media attention these outpourings are continuing unabated. My analysis provides insight into why this is occurring now.
Different Drugs, Different Worlds
This has been a brief overview of salient characteristics of generational cultures of some past and current generations alongside a description of that generation’s predominant drug use. I simultaneously unveiled in some detail what we know about the effects of these particular substances on consciousness and attitudes. Finally, I discussed the behavior and beliefs that can coincide with the use of these drugs, as they affect consciousness in different ways, creating different kinds of consciousnesses, different perspectives, indeed entirely different and distinct ways of perceiving the self and the world.
This discussion of drug use and generational cultures might be complete enough at this point. Any of the many connections not specifically made should be readily apparent and the information being brought together this way is suggestive of much more. What I do not think needs to be spelled out is the obvious: For example, how alcohol and nicotine use could be correlated with a generation that could put a Hitler into power, create a holocaust, and carry out the most destructive war in this planet’s history. It should be obvious how marijuana use could be correlated with the alienation, pessimism, and defeatism of the Beats. It should be abundantly clear how the use of LSD and marijuana among Sixties youth could correlate with a disgust with normal society and culture and thus the creation, from scratch, of a counterculture, with a pacifism in regard to war, with a reemergence of a lived and individual spirituality, with an emphasis on real communication, with an attempt to create real community and relationships, and with much more that has been associated with them. And it should need no explanation how cocaine use could be correlated with a manic economy and irrational, overoptimistic schemes, and failed business ventures.
Painting the Faces of Generations
Lest there be any misunderstanding, I should point out that, except for the WWII Generation whose drugs were legal and easily available, the above is based on generalities and trends of a minority of the people in the generations mentioned. Yet it is that distinctive minority of any generation that paints the face that generation presents to the world. It is the differences in generations and the new ideas and perceptions that make up the intellectual currency of a period and which rise above the familiar scenery to be spotlighted by the media and press.
The “Beats” did not comprise the majority of their generation and not all of them took marijuana or even had the horrifying perception of our normal unreality that is possible on that drug, yet a number of them, larger than any previously in any other generation, did exactly that … and those who did were often compelled to express those perceptions and the accompanying ideas, in literature, poetry, theater, and the like, that would influence the reality constructions of the rest of their generation and would come to characterize the palpable ideas of the era.
So it is as well with the Sixties Generation, the Yuppies, and even Generation Xers and the Millennial Generation. It is the differences between generations that is worthy of discussion. And it is my point that those differences are unusually correlated with the distinctive drug use of that generation and the effects that those drugs have on one’s perceptions of reality — a point that I have not seen explored before.
Drugs and Culture War
Finally, I wish to emphasize that these drug-influenced perceptions create the worldviews of generations out of which they create their generational cultures — the stark differences of which can fuel culture wars.


CHAPTER 5
THE KING WON’T DIE — AN ABORTED CHANGING OF THE GUARD
America Getting Free, Breaking Out
What do these events have in common? The popularity of Democrats since the Nineties, with Obama’s favorability ratings high despite US entanglement in several wars; the astounding progress in race relations exemplified by ever increasing numbers of African-Americans elected and appointed to the highest posts in US government since the Nineties, highlighted by the election of the first ever black President in the most lopsided victory in decades;
… the wild success of the Occupy Wall Street and Wisconsin union movements; massive demonstrations around the U.S., attended by hundreds of thousands at times, in favor of liberal Democratic causes and opposing Republicans and showing people carrying signs displaying the peace symbol; outpourings of peaceful pro-freedom and democracy protesters throughout the Middle East and North Africa; the reborn popularity of the “peace sign” — two fingers extended in a V-like shape, for those who don’t know — including saying “peace” while extending it as a greeting (most often these days, when leaving);
… renewed interest in the book, Catcher in the Rye; the nostalgia for Sixties and Seventies cultural accouterments as exemplified by the TV show, That 70s Show ; the resurgence of fashion items like bell-bottoms and, on women, clunky high-heel shoes; the movies Pleasantville and The Truman Show; the popularity in the Nineties of shows like Ally McBeal and The X Files;
… one-time Sixties activist Bill Clinton’s sixty-some percent approval rating throughout almost the entirety of the White House Sex Scandal alongside the pundits’ complete and total befuddlement as to the causes for it; the strong presidential run by a woman, also with roots solidly in Sixties activism, Hillary Clinton, in the 2008 Presidential race … significantly only beat out, and barely, by an African-American;
… the passage of medical use of marijuana laws in a number of states and legalization of marijuana initiatives; the return to ballad-style, Dylan-esque music embracing and expressing social, philosophical, and extremely intimate personal views and experiences….
We’ve also seen, in California, the passage of Proposition 10 — the ballot measure that imposes a fifty-cents tax on cigarettes to fund programs for young children … which ballot measure, significantly enough, was begun by Sixties-Generation representative Rob Reiner — formerly Meathead from All in the Family! The passage of single payer health insurance in Vermont.…  I could go on.
America in Chains, Breaking Down
On the other side of this we have seen, in the last two decades, several “Republican revolutions” taking the opposite side on women’s issues, union and worker’s rights, environmental policy, health care and education, budget and economic issues benefiting the poor and middle class, and all other “liberal” causes;
… the rise of a media-supported Tea Party movement, heavily funded by wealthy and corporate interests, espousing wildly reactionary and regressive measures like eliminating Social Security and Medicare, gutting environmental policies to give corporations a free hand in despoiling the environment, anti-union measures, deep budget cuts in social programs, and the showing in this movement of demonstrators hoisting signs with racist images and slogans and gleefully applauding the acting out of a slave auction depicting an African-American president, Obama, and his supporters in Congress and his administration as bloodied slaves in chains;
… the popularity of a news network promoting, in blatant and mostly dishonest form, reactionary issues and figures; the resurgence in the careers of Pat Buchanan, right wing propagandist out of the Nixon administration turned talk show pundit, and Newt Gingrich, reactionary culture warrior during the early Nineties; extreme pro-gun positions and actions, including openly carrying weapons to political rallies and events and proposing the allowance of children to bring guns to schools; thuggish attacks on left-leaning activists and demonstrators; the murder of physicians on the pro-choice side of the abortion/women’s rights issue; and attacks and threats against progressive politicians and legislators, including the nearly successful assassination attempt on Democratic Congresswoman, Gabriel Giffords…. I could go on.
Most folks would see nothing connecting these issues on either side. What I believe we are seeing is a resurgence of the underground “culture war” that has been going on in the US since the 1960s between the Sixties Generation — those whose adolescent and young adulthood, formative years were influenced by the events of the Sixties — and the World War Two Generation — those whose equivalent times of life were forged in the Forties, during and around the time of World War Two.
Generation Gap and Counterculture
The huge ravine separating the views of these two generations was most apparent when those of the Sixties Generation were in their youth, engaged in the process of discovering and exploring their values and therefore expressing them blatantly and with all the indiscretion, lack of subtlety, confrontation, and rebelliousness that characterizes the inexperienced. Thus, terms like generation gap and counterculture were bandied about, analyzed, and fervently discussed. The differences were “on the table,” in full view; and because the views and values of the youth were so “counter” or opposite to those of the WWII Generation, much debate and analysis was spawned in the media to try to explain — for the most part to the WWII Generation — how this could be so.
But these terms of generation gap and counterculture, which highlighted the great disparity of views, would fade mostly into disuse. This was because, later, the Sixties Generation would learn to keep their private views and values more hidden, for practical reasons having to do with making a living, advancing in their careers, being able to raise their children, and so on; but this did not mean their values had changed. They were biding their time, waiting — sometimes hopeless that it would ever arrive — for a reversing of the pendulum and a return in society to the ideals and visions of a better world that had so inspired them in their earlier years.
For the most part, these Sixties adherents did not know about the psychohistorical tendencies I will be describing here — as for example in the evolution of child-caring and the triumphant phase of generations. For most it was just an awareness that something so strong and so right could not simply have completely vanished from the Earth, that with time comes change, and therefore there had to be a time, again, when the mood of the country would swing in the direction they felt to be healthiest and more ideal. For some of these people their hopes were based on the simple rules of gambling: Eventually, at some time or other, with the passage of time, the dice just had to roll their number, if just out of pure chance or randomness.
Others had a slightly more reasoned view buttressing their hope for a return to idealism. These folks were those of the Sixties Generation who had applied themselves to implementing the values they learned in the Sixties in the jobs and careers they held, in whatever small or not-so-small way that they were allowed by their older generation superiors, bosses, managers, or supervisors. Never knowing that they had allies among their generation who were doing the same kind of thing in their separate fields, they followed through, the best they could, on simple conviction, born of experience, of the rightness of the more idealistic ways.
Lastly, there were those of the Sixties Generation who identified themselves completely with their youthful idealism. In putting themselves “out front” this way in their values and beliefs they found others who were doing the same. They would together become the “New Age” movement, actively engaged in bringing about the better world their generation had envisioned in the Sixties and early Seventies. They would wonder, as decades passed, why it took so long for the rest of society to catch on to what they felt was an inviting and appealing evolution — one both necessary and therefore inevitable as well.
But these last, the New Agers, would be marginalized and scapegoated by the mainstream of society — a mainstream whose outlines, of course, were determined and inscribed by the mainstream media, which was, in turn, controlled by the wealthy elite of the World War Two Generation (more about this to come). Examples included Jerry Brown labeled “Captain Moonbeam,” the family dynamics in the TV show Family Ties, the burnt-out hippie depiction of cabdriver, Jim, in the Taxi television series, and thousands of other instances where those holding New Age views were labeled “flakes.”
An Aborted Changing of the Guard — Attack of the Body-Snatchers
Another reason these terms depicting cultural division, specifically, generation gap and counterculture, went into disuse was due to the mobilization of the World War Two Generation — after their initial phase of somnolent confusion over the events that were emerging in the Sixties which left them paralyzed and watching, growing in irritation and anger — into a comprehensive counterattack against the Sixties Generation, using all the Nixonian-like tactics in their arsenal … understandably, since Nixon was of that generation and his tactics were typical of the defensive style of his contemporaries.
Lassoing the Universities
In the early Seventies, the World War Two Generation used their power and wealth, being themselves in the triumphant phase of their lives, to put pressure on colleges and universities, nationwide, to discontinue the programs, courses, and the professors that they felt were responsible for the youth’s rebellion. Their targets for destruction included such noteworthy “dangers” as liberal arts programs in general, and especially “highly revolutionary” philosophy, religious studies, anthropology, and humanistic psychology courses. A transformation of colleges and universities into “career mills” — whose primary function was to prepare the young for practical and skill-oriented jobs and professions — was called for … or else! Or else these World War Two alumni would discontinue their contributions to these educational institutions. The “bottom line” being threatened in this way, no university administration, to my knowledge, withstood their demands for very long, if at all.

Cloning Themselves … WWII Generation Creating an 80s Generation of “Mini-me’s”
The youth produced by these institutions would hereafter be dissuaded from thinking for themselves and from “questioning authority” — as the previous generation had been encouraged to do — so part of the lapse in the terms of division between the generations — counterculture and generation gap — had to do with the fact that the wave of youth that followed the Sixties Generation would be molded, in their college years, into distant replicas of World War Two Generation members. They would be termed the “Me Generation,” since selfishness, greed, money-as-god, and upward mobility were characteristics of the WWII Generation that they were able to instill in their youthful clones.
Thus, we saw the rise of Young Republicans on campus in the late Seventies, the return of ROTC to campuses, and the seeding of fertile young minds with the values that would later be verbalized — in the movie Wall Street — in the mantram “Greed is good!” At the height of this phase, periodicals were declaring how similar the “youth of today” — meaning those of the late Seventies and Eighties — were to their parents, how close they were to their parents in the beliefs and values they held, and how the generation gap had inexplicably closed. Such was the success of the WWII Generation in cloning themselves in producing Eighties youth.
In sum, beginning in the early Seventies institutions of higher learning turned away from their idealistic goals of “bringing out” from the students their inner truths and wisdom (the original meaning of the term educate), which is the avowed role of liberal arts programs, and instead turned hard, to the right, onto a path of churning out engineers, MBAs, hard scientists (even in the field of psychology, where humanistic psychology was shunned), medical professionals, lawyers, and the like. My liberal arts, semi–ivy-league college — founded, by half, by Benjamin Franklin — turned from the idealistic studies that typified Franklin and those of his time and swung from being a bastion of energetic inquiry into all controversial realms — political and spiritual and societal — a virtual “Plato’s Academy” of inquiry, into being a career mill centered around a “pre-med” program.
Harnessing the Media
Similarly, these frightened and wealthy WWII “conspirators” (however unconscious their alliance) would use their leverage to ensure that books and the media — TV, radio, magazines, and newspapers — would expound their views predominantly, would present events through the particular psychological lenses and filters with which they were familiar, and would eschew viewpoints, and even coverage of events, that would in any way strengthen the stance of the, by this time, scapegoated Sixties Generation. The media declared, with much fanfare, in the early Seventies that a “conservative backlash” was occurring; and they published books documenting this event. Meanwhile they ignored the polls and the events — specifically the ongoing and growing antiwar and other counterculture “demonstrations” — that would show the lie to this idea, and they rejected and refused publication of the kind of books and articles, still being effusively churned out — that would support the counterculture movement. Controlling the media in this way and saying it long and loud enough, the “big lie” of the “conservative backlash” began to be accepted as truth. And even many in the counterculture and among the youth began to believe it.
Interestingly, those on the extreme right did not forget that the great divide in views was still with us. In the Nineties, Pat Buchanan and Newt Gingrich said a “culture war” was going on. More recently we see WWII- and Fifties-style Tea Partiers going up against huge rallies of Sixties style pro-union demonstrators and massive recall efforts.
So those on the right decry such massive outpourings against them, but they are correct that it is a “culture war.” Obviously they can see that the world has changed from the Fifties-style “Pleasantville” that they had imagined and wanted it to be.
Culture War — The King Must Die
But the World War Two Generation could not maintain control forever. For one thing, people die. And being older than the Sixties Generation, eventually their numbers had to dwindle. Their numbers dwindling, they had to be replaced by those younger — some of whom were of the Sixties Generation and were now in what psychohistorians call the triumphant phase of life — that is, the time of life when a generation is in its “prime,” when it is most influential, when it takes over the reins of society, when it gets behind the wheel of the cultural bus.
From this perspective, we can view a remarkable film, Pleasantville, released in the late Nineties at the peak of the Sixties Generation’s triumphant phase, and see that it is a metaphorical review of history from the early Fifties up to that time — one which shows the Sixties Generation, in the end, finally realizing their vision of a more colorful, alive, open-to-new-experience and to change, growthful, changeful, passionate, unregimented, truthful, sensual, feeling and emotionful, and less determined, ritualized, and preordained existence. More about this later.
The Generational Changing of the Guard
First let me point out that this change in power, evident by this movie and the other recent cultural items I’ve mentioned, is a change as old as our species. Every generation, at some point, leaves or is removed from their seats of power when they are at or near the end of their arc of effectiveness and prowess by a younger generation that is coming into or — as in the unusual case of the Sixties Generation for the reasons unique to this time to be mentioned below — is fully in the prime of its life.
Myths, fairy tales, stories, historical tales, and legends the world over depict this change of power. The myth that is most transparent in its depiction of this change is the one in which a monarch, despot, or ogre controls and rules the land, keeping the people miserable with oppressive and selfish decrees and policies. A young prince emerges and, after a period of trial … in the case of the Sixties Generation, an unusually long period of trial … in which the prince proves himself worthy, he takes up the cause of the people and overthrows the old king and takes his place. Thus the saying “The king is dead. Long live the (new) king.”
The triumphant phase of the Sixties Generation had been delayed, however, longer than any other generation in history because of the advances in modern medical science, which served to keep the World War Two Generation alive and kicking longer than any previous generation. The average life expectancy in the last sixty years (since the time when the World War Two Generation were in their youth or young adulthood) has increased remarkably. Hence the Sixties Generation had to wait longer than the World War Two Generation to get a chance behind the wheel of society. It is strange and ironic that at a time when the speed of cultural change is greatest because of an ever increasing speed of technological change, at a time when the elder generation’s worldview becomes obsolete sooner and faster than ever before, at such a time when it would seem the younger generation’s view would attain relevancy and effectiveness faster and sooner than at any previous time, at such a time we had the reverse occurring, that is, the younger generation’s ascendancy was delayed and the older one’s stranglehold on power was extended.
But this rapid change and increasing rate of obsolescence may just have had something to do with the WWII Generation’s desire to hang on and their vehement struggle against change. For, as mentioned before, there is a gap — greater than ever before — between the views of the younger and those of the older. This gap is wrought of the different technological worlds and the corresponding sociocultural worlds that each experienced. It is widened by different, more advanced on the one side, child-caring of children as well as by different drugs used and the contrasting world views they would elicit — as explained in Chapter Three.
So the WWII Generation might be said to have been more threatened than any previous one by the generation to succeed them, because the ascendancy of the next generation appeared to overturn and oftentimes reverse so much of what they believed, valued, worked and sacrificed for.
Because of the unprecedented technological change and corresponding change in material culture, catalyzing in ways too numerous to mention a myriad of sociocultural and psychological changes in their successors, there is less overlap than ever before between the worldviews of the generation handing over power and the generation coming into power. It follows that it would seem to the generation in power, even as they approach the end of their mortality, that less of what they are and were will live on after them than has ever been the case in the history of generational succession.
This being so, such a generational succession represented a previously unheard of personal invalidation and undermining of the self-esteem of those of the World War Two Generation and a corresponding unprecedented attack on the usual delusions of immortality (themselves living on in some fashion in their successors) that older generations are allowed in exchange for their relinquishing power.
Culture War — The King Won’t Die
At any rate and whatever may be the reason, the fact remains that the World War Two Generation used their longevity for all their worth to block the ascendancy of their successors. They used their longevity to amass wealth and power — wealth greater than any previous generation before and, because of their actions, likely to come.
For example, their actions led to a situation, currently, wherein they were taken care of in their old age by a Social Security and Medicare system funded by the work of the Baby-Boomers, aka Sixties Generation, at the same time that predictions abound that that same Social Security and Medicare system will be depleted just as it is the Baby-Boomers’ time to belly-up to the bar. One might also note the WWII Generation’s environmental and ecological decisions making it that no generation after them will enjoy anywhere near the benefits — health and quality of life among them — of clean environment, abundance of natural resources, and ecological balance that they enjoyed. Finally, their decisions regarding arms buildup and proliferation may deny life itself to the generations following them. Other unprecedented ogre-like — greedy, selfish, and uncaring-of-succeeding-generations — actions can be numbered against this generation.
Generational Changing of the Guard, Aborted
So the World War Two Generation used their unprecedented wealth and power to wage a war against the generation who would be taking over from them, keeping them and their values under attack and away from the centers of power and influence in society as long as they possibly could.1
Desperate Stand: The Battle of the Bill (Clinton)
It is enlightening to consider in the Nineties the persistent attacks on Bill Clinton (similarly, on Al Gore and Hillary Clinton, continuing) — the first Sixties Generation U.S. president — ever since he took office. The Monica Lewinsky scandal is a typical example of the extent to which the World War Two Generation so effectively controlled the views and values expressed and subtly expounded in the media ever since it took conscious control of the society’s “collective consciousness” in this way in the early Seventies. By this I mean that in the entire time of the scandal, it was assumed that sex is bad, or at least that sex outside of marriage is bad. It was assumed that Hillary must be horribly pained and angered by the revelation of her husband’s affair(s).
Make Love, Not War
It is as if the slogan “Make Love, Not War” was never a generational outcry. I don’t believe you will ever find in the history books paid for/published by World War Two Generation owned publishing houses mention of the fact that slogan was ever used. Indeed, with all the talk by pundits, analysts, and commentators on literally hundreds of TV shows during the entire time of the Lewinsky scandal and impeachment drama, that slogan, “Make Love, Not War,” was practically never mentioned. I am aware of only one time — when I heard it slipped in unnoticed by a participant in the middle of a talkin’-all-at-once brouhaha on the TV show Politically Incorrect, whereupon it was totally ignored. Even more astonishing, those same pundits discussed, ad nauseum, this scandal and all the myriad ramifications of it yet never, to my knowledge, made note of Clinton’s generational status and the views, exemplified by “Make Love, Not War,” which my generation espoused. It has simply been assumed that all of the Sixties Generation “grew out” of that kind of “nonsense” and had adopted the views of the WWII Generation … again, polls on values and viewpoints be damned.
Rewriting History
Most telling of all in the attacks on Clinton’s behavior is the assumption that such a stance on open marriage and uninhibited sexuality is a product of uncontrolled lewdness and the sexual license exhibited primarily by the young, which naturally everyone grows out of in order to adopt the constrained and secretive sexual views of the old. The sexual revolution’s parallel growth in the Sixties with expanding civil rights, women’s rights, and individual liberty is completely ignored. Its roots in an idealism about final and complete gender equality is totally vanquished as if it were never so.
In fact, I doubt you, the reader, know of this. Yet hordes of Sixties youth shared with each other, conspiratorial-like, the Sixties novel, The Harrad Experiment by Robert H. Rimmer, which portrayed — in poetic and highly intelligent fashion — an evolution to a radical equality between the genders, to an elimination of neurotic suffering around sexuality as, for example, in painful jealousy, to an ending of sexual violence as in spouse abuse, and a final and complete solution to a gender war existing for all time with incalculable casualties and near infinity of suffering on both sides. It was a story about non-monogamy and open relationships … “free love.”
Neither did the pundits point out that Bill Clinton is of a generation who made a book on “open marriage” a bestseller. The clinch on the media by that older generation has been so complete as to have, apparently, completely dismissed or erased from the minds of the pundits the facts that those ideas and books ever existed. Another thing erased from history since the Seventies: the “sexual revolution.” Remember that? When was the last time you heard that talked about? All of the energy that had surrounded these controversial ideas has, because of media manipulation and repression of these views, been channeled into and reduced to a fight over a woman’s right to choose, that is to say, the abortion issue, and more recently to fights over union rights and budget issues.
Abortion Wars
Incidentally, it is no coincidence that the issue of abortion has taken on such importance for so many in the electorate, for it is the last remaining battle of the “culture war” directly continuing from the Sixties. Prior to the Sixties, women’s bodies could not be considered their own, in many ways; a prominent way was the illegality of abortion, which made outcasts and corpses out of untold numbers of women. It was reversed by Roe v. Wade in the Sixties. But the battle never went away and is the major front in a Gender War that has been going on for millennia.
And your position on the abortion issue is the closest thing to a military uniform indicating on which side of the culture war you have enlisted. Specifically, I am saying that there are few of the Sixties Generation who would not classify themselves as “pro-choice.” Meanwhile, the anti-abortionists are found to be comprised primarily of those of the WWII Generation, their Eighties Generation clones, and the Eisenhower-Presley-McCarthy — and now we might add “Pleasantville” — Fifties Generation. (For a definition and explanation of Fifties Generation see the previous chapter, “Drugs and Generations — Concocted Worlds”)
World War Two and Fifties Generations Just Don’t Get It … Never Have, and Never Will
Of course, I am saying that the War on Clinton was, in its essence, an unacknowledged but desperate battle in the Culture War that has been going on since the Sixties — despite these attacks not being framed or talked about this way — between the World War Two and the Sixties Generations. The World War Two Generation, especially after the elections of November 1998, learned that it was way off in some of its assumptions, that their analysis of what had been happening in this country was woefully miscalculated. They were like the deluded schizophrenic who believed passionately in the world he himself created coming up against some of the hard, harsh, and indisputable facts of existence which undermine his world. The World-War-Two-Generation–minded — whatever the individual’s age, and especially now, their underlings of the Fifties Generation — have been fighting back, since the Nineties, with all the firepower they can muster against realizing the harsh realities around them of their waning ideals. They have been in total and absolute denial of the direction of the American, indeed the world, consciousness; and they have been flinging all their wealth into the mix to try to repress the emerging truths.
When I first published on this topic in 1998 I wrote, “But we shouldn’t be surprised if we see some of those in their ranks — wealthy and facing their inevitable demise — merely increasing the ferocity of their war waging … humiliating themselves and seeming ever more pitiful in the minds of the majority of observers, who increasingly, as time continues to decimate their WWII ranks, are younger than they and thus do not share their delusions.”
I am sorry to say I was more correct than I could ever have dreamed as we have faced, since the change of the millennium, neo-con wars built on lies and confused tea-baggers railing against their own interests.


CHAPTER 6
CULTURE WAR ALLEGORY
Not So Pleasantville
The film, Pleasantville, is a postmodern sociological allegory or fable released in 1998. It begins in then-current time against a backdrop of the usual violence, chaos, and turbulence that we are conditioned by the media to believe characterized the Nineties in America. Two high school teenagers, David and Jennifer, played by Tobey Maguire and Reese Witherspoon, are planning their evening.
A Tale of Two Siblings
David is planning to watch the Pleasantville marathon on television and to participate in the trivia contest that will be part of it. Pleasantville is an old sitcom from the 1950s in the Father Knows Best, Leave It to Beaver, My Three Sons style which has attained a cult-like following and is shown regularly on a cable channel similar to the “Nick at Nite” one that we know of which specialized in reruns of old sitcoms. It becomes clear that David is an ardent devotee of the show in part because it compensates for the lameness of his real life. Unlike his sister, who is portrayed as a real “firecracker” of a young woman, he doesn’t date or participate in the school scene. It is implied that he may be using the sitcom as an escape from not only a boring life but a threatening one and that he longs to live in the kind of ordered, safe, and unchallenging reality that the sitcom depicts. David is such an avid follower of the show that he is shown to be a master of Pleasantville trivia and is primed and eager for the contest on Pleasantville trivia.
But his sister, Jennifer, is planning for a hot date at home … their parents being away for the weekend providing an opportunity for her to be unchaperoned with her guy … which she eagerly anticipates. At odds over what will be played on the TV — Jennifer wanting to watch instead an MTV concert with her date — they wrestle over the TV remote and end up breaking it. However all is not lost as at just that moment and completely inexplicably a television repairman played by Don Knotts drives up in his truck, knocks on the door, and imposes his services on them in fixing the problem.
Don Knotts — perfectly cast, in a Jungian sense, for it is often the impish or normally overlooked and unnoticed element that initiates sweeping changes in people’s lives — indeed does introduce the magical element into the film. He produces a different kind of remote control, which he claims has special effects saying, “You want something to put you right in the show!” Sure enough, in checking out the remote they hit a mysterious button and are transported into the TV and thus into the sitcom and the town that is called Pleasantville.
To Follow Or Not to Follow “The Script”
After their initial confusion, they realize what has happened and try to return, but do not know how to. David — who it becomes apparent has been thrust into the role of Bud in the sitcom — advises his sister — Jennifer who has become Mary Sue in the TV series — to go along with events until they figure a way to get home. Since he knows all the plots of every show of the sitcom, his idea is that they act out the events as they are supposed to happen and that they do what the two characters — the teenage son and daughter of the parents in the sitcom, Betty and George Parker, played superbly by Joan Allen and William H. Macy — are known to do in the different episodes he has seen.
Essentially, then, David as Bud is advising his sister to “follow the script.” And of course it is not hard to discern at this point that we are beginning to see a metaphor for psychological realities and that “following the script” has a broader meaning for a choice that everyone must make in life in growing up, specifically, to follow the script laid out for oneself by one’s parents and society in general or to follow one’s inner direction and inner guide in asserting one’s individuality and expressing one’s unique self.
The rest of the movie is the story of how these two characters — transported magically from the future as well as from the real world as opposed to a made-up TV world — introduce change into the town and thereby color. Mary Sue, formerly Jennifer, does it consciously. Rebelling against her brother’s admonishments to follow the script, she goes on a date with someone she is not supposed to according to the sitcom script and then — horror of horrors for a 1950s world — engages in sex with him at the local “lover’s lane” — where the farthest that anyone goes, according to “script,” is holding hands. We find later that her date describes this unheard of experience to his classmates, and, like ripples emanating from a pebble dropped in a pond, her action results in a number of the school youth engaging in sex and thereby becoming, to everyone’s amazement, colorized!
The brother also introduces change, and therefore color, but it is done unconsciously at first. As mentioned, he tries to get his sister to follow the script. Still, in a metaphorically powerful scene, when he is late for work at the local malt shop — this is unheard of as well because Pleasantville is a world where no one is ever late for work — he inadvertently introduces change himself. In fact, he introduces the most insidious element of change because he explicitly advises — without realizing what he has unleashed — that his boss think for himself!
In this scene Bud, formerly David, finds his boss and coworker, Mister Johnson, played by Jeff Daniels, stuck at the end of the counter, cleaning away with a wash cloth, like a stuck record, at the same spot, even as the surface of the counter is rubbing away.
When the soda jerk, Mister Johnson, explains confusedly that the normal regimen would have required Bud to arrive at work before he, Mister Johnson, could go on to the rest of his chores, Bud simply suggests to Mister Johnson that in the future he continue with his next chore even if Bud is not there.
So simply in being himself, coming from a future in which people react to change by thinking out new responses and thereby adapting to them, Bud, aka David, introduces a totally new element into the soda jerk’s script. This has far reaching consequences as the movie progresses and Mister Johnson begins thinking for himself and having ideas about other things as well. In this way, the soda jerk, soon to be artist, too ends up “colored.”
Blue Meanies
The 1998 movie, Pleasantville, thematically, is remarkably akin to the 1968-released movie Yellow Submarine put out by the Sixties Generation rock group The Beatles.
In Yellow Submarine there is a region ruled by the Blue Meanies. These Blue Meanies, especially their leader, are depicted as powerful and cruel, yet sniveling, insecure, weak, and selfish underneath. Their angry and oppressive personas are shown to reveal poor little whining babies behind them. Their actions are shown to be those of “big babies,” whose gruff exterior must remain intact at all costs, lest their hidden sniveling and hurt little selves be revealed. The analogy the Beatles are making to those of the WWII Generation — at that time the parental generation, those “over 30″ — is impossible not to make.

“Nowhere Man”
The movies are so similar in theme that the only major thematic difference between Pleasantville and Yellow Submarine is that it is music that is not allowed in Yellow Submarine whereas in Pleasantville it is color. But the idea behind them both is the same: Music and color both represent deep feeling, aliveness, thinking for oneself, and change. In Yellow Submarine, the man without music is Nowhere Man, who “knows not where he’s going to, doesn’t have a point of view.” In Pleasantville, the men without color act in the same ways, performing the same actions, day in, day out, without change, zombie- or robot-like — like characters in a 1950s-style sitcom in which nothing unpleasant, different, new, or too emotional is allowed to occur.
And above all, the black-and-white men do not think for themselves. This is graphically portrayed in the scene mentioned where the owner of the town malt shop, Mister Johnson, portrayed by Jeff Daniels, is left cleaning the same spot of the counter for hours so that its top is rubbed away because his coworker is late and the routine they use to close up cannot be completed in the way it is done, every day, in exactly the same way. Confronted with this small change, he shows himself to be the “Nowhere Man” and like a needle stuck on a record, he is rigidly stuck repeating the same action, not having the power to think of an alternative action in response to a change in the usual routine.
“The Awakening” — No Longer a Distant Vision
The differences in the years of the release and the different artistic modes used to express the themes of these two movies have something to say as well. In 1968 the changes in culture of the New Age were a vision and a hope. It is appropriate and telling that Yellow Submarine was expressed in animated form. Like a dream that would take a long time to realize, it needed to be expressed in cartoon-like fashion, for the time of its emergence in reality was too far off.
By contrast, Pleasantville blends a fantasy world — appropriately it is a TV sitcom, which has more similarities with reality than an animation — with the actual reality of postmodern times. The advance toward reality is patent in the evolution from an animated form — indicating the change is far off, a fantasy, a wish, a hope — in the 1968 movie; to a black-and-white form involving real actors, real people; and then to a colorized version involving real people in what is supposed to be real time and real cultural reality, in the movie released thirty years later. One might say that what was a fantasy over forty years ago is, however unconsciously, being heralded as, hopefully, emerging and coming into being now — in actual, black-and-white or colored, real time and place.
Reversing the Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Concerning the movie, Pleasantville, noted movie critic Roger Ebert quite astutely pointed out that it was “like the defeat of the body snatchers” (from his excellent review, “Pleasantville”). One might also say that it is one in which Holden Caulfield, the character in J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, wins out and children do not grow up to be adult “phonies.” Another analogy would be that it is a depiction in which Peter Pan stays young, when he succeeds in keeping the children from ever growing up and thereby losing their capacity to “fly” — representing the capacity to dream, to envision, to be open to new possibilities, to adventure.
What It Is That Makes One Alive
Against this backdrop of lack of real aliveness, the introduction of color into the town of Pleasantville through the introduction of sex is not seen as something bad at all. Similarly, in recent history, despite the increasing drum beating of the Religious Right in the last three decades, those of us who grew up in the Fifties know that the introduction of sex — in the Sixties, as in the “sexual revolution” — was a step forward from the hypocritical sameness and plodding repression of the Fifties.
Other elements introduced into Pleasantville that produce colorization in the participants include thinking for oneself (Jeff Daniels in his role as the soda jerk), intellectual passion (the sister), questioning the way things are supposed to be or, in Sixties terms, questioning authority (when the brother finally becomes colored), artistic and creative passion (Jeff Daniels again), and even the passion of honest rage (the chairman of the Chamber of Commerce). These elements arise in Pleasantville just as they arose into the collective consciousness of those of us living in the Fifties and Sixties.
Of course I am not naively saying that these elements never existed before the Sixties. The underlying factor that was introduced into the movie causing color and that was also introduced into our society causing all the sociocultural changes that we, usually, complain about is the factor of choosing something different than what is expected by society, than what is expected by the outside. What is introduced in the movie — as it was introduced in our culture — is the preeminence of inner authority in making decisions, as opposed to outer authority.
A New Psychohistorical Era!
In psychohistorical terms this difference is marked by Lloyd deMause as a difference in a mode of child-rearing. The black-and-white Fifties Pleasantville is a representation of a mode of child-rearing — which characterized the Fifties — wherein the role of the parents is to “mold,” model, and guide children along paths that the parents have deemed to be correct — called the socializing mode of child-rearing. The child is expected to be a clone of the parents, a mini-me, or at least to represent the parents’ ideas of proper behavior, ideals, and mode of living, regardless of whether the parent models them or not. And when not, the phrase “Do as I say, not as I do” and the term hypocrite as applied to the parents are apropos. The basic nature of the child is considered to be sinful and evil or at least bestial; the classic novel Lord of the Flies depicts this view of human nature. Therefore the child needs to become other than itself and conform itself to something outside of itself in order for she or he to be considered “good” and to receive good responses in turn from parents and society.
By contrast, the colorized Pleasantville represents the mode of child-caring that came out, big time, beginning in the Sixties, wherein the parents’ role is that of “bringing out” from and supporting, encouraging, and helping the child to discover what the child’s talents and inherent abilities, feelings, and proclivities are, and then encouraging the child to “believe in him/herself” in the expression of those inherent and inborn good qualities and values — termed the helping mode of child-caring.1
This mode contains a radically new view of basic human nature. Humans are seen to be essentially good (even “divine”). It is evil and painful events impinging upon the child from the outside — family and society — that are deemed causative in taking the child from its natural state of innocence and goodness and inherent unique talents to one wherein the child is corrupted and thus becomes bestial and lacking in inherent good qualities and talents.
Therefore the solution is to protect the child from traumas coming from the outside, especially the huge one of feeling unloved through not being seen or respected as a unique individual … as opposed to being seen as a mere outgrowth or mini-me of a parental entity. And in so doing the parents’ role includes helping the child to discover his or her uniqueness and dispensing unconditional love, that is, love that is given freely, without the requirement, as in the socializing mode, that the child do and be what the parents want before the child is accepted or shown approval or any emotional warmth.
In representing this advanced mode of being (and child-caring) the “colorized” people in Pleasantville open themselves to possibilities that were never before considered; they stray from the earlier mode requiring strict conformity to parental scripts. Robert Kennedy’s Sixties quote comes to mind as expressing this: “Some people look at things as they are and ask, why? I think of things that never were and ask, why not?” This means, then, a capacity to experiment and adventure in one’s life, which, at bottom, involve a belief in questioning authority and thinking for oneself in Sixties terms or, in Carl Jung’s words, a belief that we are, each of us, “experiments in truth” in our sojourns on Earth. And just as these elements and beliefs became more and more a part of America’s collective consciousness in the Sixties and Seventies and ever since then, they also gradually develop in Pleasantville.
“Love My Uncertainty”
One reviewer described the ending of the movie as “not at all easy and tidy, but rather very, very messy” (“Pleasantville” by Chris A. Bolton). Ebert — more astutely but not quite correctly — wrote that the determining factor in whether someone became colored was the factor of change. The first reviewer, like someone with one foot still in Pleasantville or one who is still not fully colored, does not understand that the ending, wherein the characters proclaim that they do not know what is going to happen next, contains exactly the essential message of the movie. The ending can only be “messy” if one expects a particular ending.
The reviewer is very much like the critics of Occupy Wall Street who claim the protesters do not have a message, or a leader … essentially do not know where they are going. He is wrong for the same reasons those critics are.
The whole point of change is that it is always something one does not expect. Likewise, when people act out of inner rather than outer authority, one can only expect that what happens will be unique, like people are when they are not conforming to external expectations. So there could be no pat or predicted ending. The moviegoer could not leave knowing whether Betty Parker, the Stepford housewife turned liberated woman, returns to her husband, George, or takes off with the soda jerk turned artist, Mister Johnson, because that would destroy the uncertainty inherent in change, growth, aliveness, and so on. So the ending is exactly what it has to be.
And this ending expresses the spiritual razor’s edge each of us must cross during our life’s sojourn. Whenever we try to put life, or love, into a box, package, or a gilded cage, it dies or stagnates — just like a boring black-and-white sitcom world. Real change and spiritual growth means letting go and opening oneself to the unexpected and the unknown. So it is in this vein that the spiritual teacher Sathya Sai Baba tells his followers, “Love my uncertainty,” in helping them to deal — after the usual “honeymoon phase” at the beginning of their spiritual path — with the trials, changes, tribulations, and suffering that his devotees experience later on, along their path to greater purity of heart and compassion, and eventually spiritual liberation.
The Scenery of Healing
One of the reasons the movie, Pleasantville, so appealed to me is that its view of current events is so akin to that which I have been expressing in other of my more recent writings — for example, the books Apocalypse NO, Apocalypse or Earth Rebirth and the Emerging Perinatal Unconscious and Apocalypse Emergency, Love’s Wake-Up Call — wherein I make the argument that recent events are not evidence of a downfall of civilization, as conservatives like Newt Gingrich and Pat Buchanan would have us believe, but are the necessary “birth pains” of a new age being born.
In Pleasantville, indeed, though everyone smiles and there is no crime or unpleasantness — which is supposed to reflect the view of reality presented in Fifties sitcoms like Father Knows Best and Leave It to Beaver — it is inherently flawed in that it is lacking in “color.” Those of us who lived through the Fifties know that the lack of color is an apt metaphor for exactly the way it was at that time. It was a back-and-white world — a world that covered up its underlying nastiness and evil by repression and denial — psychological defense mechanisms that characterized the World-War-Two Generation especially.
New Mantram: “Thinking for Oneself Is Good!”
The point in the movie, which is so appealing, is that it causes us to look again at the changes in our society that have occurred because of the various “revolutions” of postmodern times — civil rights, student antiwar, women’s rights, sexual, and so on — and to stop bemoaning the “messiness” that comes with freedom. We have more choice, more freedom now than ever. And this freedom allows us the opportunity for a higher spirituality — some would say the only true spirituality — which involves the harrowing path of deciding for oneself, based upon one’s ability to intuit or “feel” the correct path, and experiencing the consequences of one’s choices, as opposed to the preordained religiosity of following a script.
Though many would argue this, one has only to look, as this movie forces us to do, back at where we started. And from that perspective, with that stultifying, hypocritical, dishonest, and phony kind of supposed “living” in mind, we can easily see the changes and progress made in individual freedom and, dare I say, genuine spirituality, and accept the uncertainty, emotional pain, apparent evil, “messiness,” social and political turbulence, and all the rest that comes with it.


CHAPTER 7
CULTURAL REBIRTH, ABORTED
The paramount theme in Pleasantville — which is that thinking for oneself and following one’s own unique path and being open to the change that comes with that brings “color,” truth, and aliveness to one’s life — is truly a Sixties Generation idea. Again, it is not that it has never been thought of before. All great ideas have been thought before, but that does not mean they have been implemented on a sociocultural, macrocosmic level. Many ideas have remained in the realm of the solitary pursuits of philosophers and mystics and been exemplified only in individual lives. But the Sixties was such a time of turmoil because the values of individual freedom, personal passion, feeling and experience, questioning authority, and thinking for oneself were shared by so many Baby-Boomers and were so contrary to the values of the generation in power.
It’s a (Not So) Wonderful Life — WWII Generation
An excellent example of how opposed the Sixties values are to those of the WWII Generation is found in that beloved movie of all time, It’s a Wonderful Life, starring Jimmy Stewart. In that film, the main character is prevented by circumstances from following his dreams. One event after another keeps him from leaving his home town. His story might be called The Truman Show in reverse for he comes to accept the loss of his dreams. He is rewarded for giving up his yearning for adventure with the warmth of a loving family and friends.
Nonetheless, he has been reduced to someone who simply follows a script or role and when it appears that he might fail in that role he considers killing himself.
Reassures a Generation
The movie is beloved and timeless, no doubt, because it reassures an entire generation and all those who have had to give up their dreams for whatever reason that their sacrifices were for a higher good and that it is a wonderful life after all.
Will never know what might have been
It provides a rationalization against the painful feelings of knowing that one will never know “what might have been” by pointing out the truth that one’s life affects others and has meaning regardless of whether or not one has been fortunate enough to actualize one’s deepest desires, talents, aspirations, and dreams.
War Compels Dashing of Dreams
As mentioned, It’s a Wonderful Life calls out to and epitomizes the experiences and attitudes of the World War Two Generation in particular. They were called upon to fight a war, after all, which no doubt would derail many a young man’s (and woman’s) dreams. As in It’s a Wonderful Life, the circumstances that arise to prevent their following through on their dreams are imposed from the outside — the state of being at war and being called upon by a draft to enlist or else be enlisted. For the women, as well as the men who stayed behind, the war’s influence on their lives and the carrying out of idealistic schemes and dreams are only a little less pronounced. For, as in It’s a Wonderful Life, the war created a society heaving with needs and pain, which only the truly heartless (who would not have any dreams anyway) could not help but feel compelled to respond to.
Growing up too fast
In one way or another, the situation in the Forties, with the war effort and afterwards, created a generation who, except for the rare individual or one of unusual circumstances, was called upon to step up into mature responsible tasks long before the idealism of their youth would have preferred that they do so. And their generation is scarred for having missed this opportunity. They are individuals deserving of our sympathy; yet crippled they were nonetheless.
Mashing Butterflies and Drowning Kittens
This is not to say, however, that the generations before the WWII Generation were allowed their dreams and that the WWII Generation was unique in being crippled in its development. For we know that earlier child-rearing modes required the submission of children and youth to parental wishes.
Therefore, dreaming or envisioning an adventurous life was not the norm. For much of the history of the world and in most cultures, indeed, even the selection of one’s spouse was decided by the parents. So much has our history — in both Eastern and Western cultures — been marked by the assassination of youthful dreaming, idealism, and choice that Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet can be said to be a revolutionary work in even depicting that this assassination of dreams is a tragedy!
Roaring Into Life
Still, the WWII Generation can be said to have been especially affected by this slaying of self, for they did, after all, experience the heady freedom of the “Roaring Twenties” and the dreaming that preceded the Great Depression. In the Twenties, victorious in World War I and with it now put behind, America was coming into its youthfulness and was heady with its achievements. Unbelievable accomplishments and inventions in all areas of life were speeding up sociocultural change causing some to believe that a new era was around the corner, just within reach, an era unlike anything the world had ever known. This was the atmosphere in the Twenties when the WWII Generation were in their childhood or adolescence. It could not help making a very strong, because of its being early, imprint on their expectations.
Suddenly Depressed
However, these dreams would be dashed in the Great Depression, during which time they would be adolescents and young adults, and they would be harnessed into struggling like their parents had to earlier and were now again struggling.
Getting a New Deal … Light at the End of a Tunnel
Still, as time wore on the dreams of a new world would be reignited with the idealistic union movement and the Franklin Roosevelt changes in the social contract that rescripted the relation between the society and the individual, creating a symbiotic one which enhanced them both as champions of each other. Folks would magnify the power of the person when united with others. They would dream of a fairer world in which the rich did not dominate with their wealth because the poor could balance the scales with their strength in numbers, adding to their individual power by joining in unions and by combining their votes in elections. They could begin to envision the light at the end of the tunnel of the Great Depression in which they might realize the freedom and adventure they’d glimpsed around them as children in the Twenties.

War. Shot Down Again
So it is understandable that they would not wish to enter World War II when it began. And Pearl Harbor Day, when their fate was inevitably forged, when it became clear that for the second time the light of individual freedom would be extinguished, would become an important marker in their lifetimes — a day almost as much to be memorialized as their birthdays.
We Are the Centaurs (My Friends) — Sixties Generation
Sitting on the Shoulders of One’s Ancestors
For this we can pity the World War Two Generation. As in John Updike’s The Centaur, the World War Two Generation is depicted as a generation that was required to give up its dreams and do its “duty,” above all. It was required to carry out a script given to them by their society, not allowing them to follow their natural youthful ideals. And as in Updike’s novel, they are beaten down in a life that is regimented and has no “color,” spark, life, idealism, or dreams. They have become the robot-like residents of Pleasantville. But Updike points out in his novel that their sacrifice, despite the personal tragedy of it on the individual scale, is both necessary and noble in that it makes possible the realization of dreams by the generation that they gave birth to.
The Sixties Generation Arrived
It is significant that the protagonist of change in the movie Pleasantville would be a young male, Bud (David). This is in keeping with legends of old where a young prince comes bearing the new knowledge. But in postmodern style, wonderfully so, he is drawn only reluctantly into this role and we see that it is women who are the real instigators, the least threatened by change. At first, David/Bud opposes his sister and argues for the status quo, maintaining that his sister, who is actually the first one to “break the rules” and thereby to bring color to the town, must abide by the script.
The Prince in Exile
The Prince is schooled in tradition
The “young prince” knows the rules well. This fits with legend, where the new ways are brought by a prince who is not ignorant of tradition; in fact the prince is the one who has excelled in training in traditional ways.1
In the movie, David is in fact a Pleasantville trivia whiz. He knows exactly the way things are supposed to unravel, the way events are supposed to go.
The Prince is reluctant to break with tradition
So when his sister first introduces color by introducing sex, he admonishes her. And when he also is tempted to a change in the “script,” he refuses at first. This is when Bud is offered homemade cookies by the young woman who would be his romantic partner. He refuses because he knows that, according to script, it is another young man who is supposed to get the cookies and end up with that particular girl. Despite his attraction for the young woman, his strong sense of maintaining the status quo, not rocking the boat, causes him to try to refuse the cookies. It takes a great deal of forcefulness on the young woman’s part to get him, reluctantly, to accept the cookies that he actually does want. So, again, it is a young, significantly “colorized,” woman who tempts him into a change in the script.
The Prince brings change, without realizing it, just being himself
It is not that the young man does not have the makeup for accepting change. In fact, even before his sister blatantly brings about change, and therefore color, by rebelliously introducing sex, he has already sown the seeds of change, although unconsciously, when he suggests to his boss, Mister Johnson, that he think for himself, instead of following a rigid script. This he does unconsciously and out of selfish motives in that he by nature is different from the character he is supposed to portray and so he does not play his role exactly as it is “supposed” to be played. Specifically, because he is not really the robot character he has replaced, he ends up being late for his job — which heretofore was a totally unheard of event.
Cultural Rebirth
The Hundredth Monkey
It is also significant that it is the young that are the first ones in the town to become “colored.” As in the hundredth monkey phenomenon, it is first the young, especially females, who are open to new experiences, ways, and ideas. Then it is adult females — in this movie exemplified by Betty Parker, the mother of Bud and Mary Sue — who are next to consider alternatives and new ways. Adult males are the last to turn to color, but among them it is the sensitive of heart, exemplified by the artist/soda-jerk character, Mister Johnson, who “turn on” initially.
Good Old Boys, the Last to Learn
Last to become colorized — that is to say, to be open to change and thinking for oneself — are the “authorities” of the town, in this instance, those on the Chamber of Commerce. And among these the most recalcitrant of all is their leader, Big Bob, played by J.T. Walsh, in his final film role before his passing away. Though Big Bob displays a pleasing and affable persona on the surface (for this read “good old boy”), there is an insidious Hitleresque quality to him which provides the suspense at the climax of the movie where he presides over the fate of the artist, Mister Johnson, and the “young prince,” David/Bud.

“You Can’t Legislate Morals”
With the support of the Chamber of Commerce, we know Big Bob has the power to do whatever he will with the two on trial. And since the events preceding the trial have included mob actions, as in a book burning, the attack and destruction of the malt shop, and the cornering, physical intimidation, and physical attack of “coloreds” by gangs — images common to modern times which has seen these sorts of events in actuality occurring in the civil rights and anti–Vietnam-War movements, and currently in democracy and freedom uprisings in the Middle East, America, Turkey, Brazil, and throughout the world in Occupy movements — the fate of the prisoners is imagined to include the ultimate penalty of death.
“Conservative Backlash”
Indeed, this ominous possibility is promoted by the actions of the soda-jerk Artist who, at the trial, pitifully pleads for a compromise. This is pitiful since we know that his art is his life, that it is the one thing that has truly enriched his life and made it worth living.
Sitting at the Lunch Counter
We know of its importance in that, even after the attack on his malt shop, he defied the “rules” laid down by the town’s authorities, which outlawed art and color, by working with the Prince through the night to produce a colorful mural on the outside wall of his shop depicting the current events of the town and the feelings swirling about inside its residents.
This defiant act by the artist is reminiscent of antiwar demonstrators, who got fired upon at Kent State, of civil rights demonstrators, who police attacked with dogs, and of Tiananmen Square demonstrators, who were rolled over by tanks, shot, and killed, and most recently of all the courageous men and women of the Middle East risking their lives for freedom and of the Occupy heroes throughout the world putting their bodies in front of, arguably, the most dire, widespread fascism ever to exist.
Since this character, recently so courageously defiant, is intimidated into pleading for a compromise in which he would be willing to use only certain colors or where he would submit for approval by the Chamber’s leader his ideas for painting beforehand — a compromise which his body language and facial expressions show, wonderfully acted by Jeff Daniels, is one near up against the very death of his soul — we know he fears for the loss of his physical life.
“Just Sign This Confession”
The compromise is too much like the compromises we have witnessed being offered and come to expect being offered to some of the Tiananmen Square and other political prisoners of recent times wherein they are required to do something along the lines of admitting their guilt, apologizing to the State for the trouble they have caused it, and promising to never again to engage in such activities … and only in the most benevolent of circumstances being allowed to continue anything like their former activities; but, if so, only under the supervision and with the approval of authorities with veto power over their proposed actions.
The Religious Wrong
So Big Bob and the Chamber of Commerce represent in the current social framework the Religious Right (sometimes referred to as the “religious wrong” and sometimes about which it is noted that the Religious Right is neither). Big Bob’s Chamber of Commerce represents Republicans, Tea Partiers, and those in general in our society who have succumbed to the rewards and threats of the World War Two Generation to live a regimented, robot-like, unfeeling, passionless life; to become one of J.D. Salinger’s “phonies,” to abide by their misconstrued idea of “family values,” and above all to “behave” and not do anything to rock the boat of the status quo which might threaten the privileges of those currently enjoying power and wealth handed down, mostly, by heredity.
Civil Rights Movement
It is highly significant that in the courtroom scene the “colored” would be sitting in the balcony, above the black-and-white men. One might say this represents their status as being an elevated state, something to aspire to, and yet not on the level where matters are decided. But even more so, this scene is important in that it is a near exact replication of the courtroom scene in To Kill a Mockingbird, wherein the balcony of the courtroom is filled with African Americans — another kind of “colored.” This makes it clear that when the movie is dealing with the conflict between the adult males of the town and the “colored” it is referring to the Civil Rights movement.
Cultural Rebirth Aborted
The American Tiananmen Square
The events in China’s Tiananmen Square more than twenty years ago so affected and still affects some of us here in America because we know at some level that we have experienced it before. What happened in China two decades ago is so much like what happened here four decades ago, somewhat less graphically, around the Vietnam War demonstrations. Let me explain.
Standing before tanks, flowers in barrels
For one thing, the images of the demonstrations in China, for example, the lone man standing in front of the tank, were so like those of Sixties demonstrations, as in Sixties youth blocking the paths of soldiers and placing flowers in their gun barrels.

Revenge of the octogenarians
And the result of both was the same: In both cases the opposition, the youth movement, crushed —  violently in China, subtly and behind the scenes in the US — at the command of an octogenarian generation, clinging desperately to power as much as to their waning physical frames.
The King Won’t Die
Assassinations — character and otherwise
We see the same pattern of violent versus subtle played out in the US as well where we no longer assassinate our president as we did with JFK, we character assassinate instead, as we did with Clinton and which the Tea Party and the wealthy right are trying to manufacture against Obama. One might say that, in America, the WWII generation and its protégés have gotten more finesse, with practice, in its beating back sociocultural change not to their liking and that the Chinese geriatric set didn’t have as much practice with it.
The King refuses to die
Nevertheless the results in both countries are the same. They involve the ultimate victory of sociocultural change in both instances being delayed until the dying off of an elderly generation in power — a generation refusing to die or hand over the controls at the proper time like the generations before them. Simply, the king won’t die!
Time is running out
Time is running out for the octogenarians and ninety-somethings on either side of the Pacific.
The expected, supposedly inevitable defeat of the WWII Generation — their dying off — is portrayed in Pleasantville by Big Bob, head of the Chamber of Commerce, ending up fleeing the scene in the courtroom. (Strange coincidence, the actor actually died after making this film.) There are many ways his defeat could have been played out in the movie. I think it is highly significant that he runs away, never to be seen again, just as in the current context the dying off of the WWII Generation is a literal leaving of the scene, not an outright defeat or some other means of change of power.
The King on Life Support and The Consequences of an Abomination: America Since Its “Pleasantville”
With these factors in mind, what have we experienced in the last two decades, as the Sixties Generation finally got its turn? As expected, it was at first quite different from what the WWII Generation had been serving up during its forty-plus years’ reign.
The Nineties
We saw the beginnings of cultural enlightening and progress during Clinton’s term in the Nineties. In retrospect it was a colorful time; it was an enthusiastic time.
The Nineties were bookmarked between the economic wreckage left by Reagan-Bush and their voodoo economics throwing money at the rich leading to a huge recession and a financial scandal — S&L Scandal — that involved, for that time, an extraordinary price tag for the country. And the other end was the assignment by the Supreme Court of the election to George W. Bush over Al Gore — a battle of a Sixties Generation member against a WWII Generation paid-for concoction, the W.
A culture war raged
In between those two markers a war was waged, a culture war, whose battles — economics, abortion, sexuality, cultural expression, war/peace, child abuse, spouse abuse; and whose personalities — Clinton, Gingrich, Lewinsky, OJ Simpson, Pat Robertson, Jerry Brown, Ross Perot — were detailed and rehashed endlessly via the daily news mills.
The W
At the end, the installment of the W represented a resurgence, in typical Culture War style, of the dominance of WWII-type oppression and manipulation of the masses.
The King Propped Up Mechanically
It was the abortion of the changing of the cultural guard that was naturally occurring. It was the King propped up mechanically, robot-like carrying out the dictums of those who once lived but were no more. It was an abomination of the natural order.
The consequences of an abomination
And its consequences during the first decade of the Twenty-First Century were exactly what would be expected from an abomination like that.
Monsters don’t really die in horror flicks
The WWII Generation — like the endings of horror flicks, which leave always a hint or part of the monster living on somehow, thus setting up a possible sequel — left behind part of itself in the form of the Eighties Generation clones and the Fifties Generation. And these folks ain’t going away any time soon! They are here in the Tea Party; they are here in the wealthy right; they are here in the ownership and guiding principles of the mainstream media, now become principal propagandist of the American patriarchy (the “filthy rich”).

Millennium’s Second Decade — Good News, Bad News, and Hope
Same Old Culture War
Currently, in the second decade of the new millennium, the Culture War has erupted in Nineties fashions, pitting Obama now against the cultural regressives.
The Wisconsin-style anti-cutback, pro-union uprisings and the worldwide Occupy phenomenon have brought the lingering issues out into the open in a style not much different from the rebellious Sixties.
It is the same old culture war/class war, now brought to furious and fiery life, as a struggle suppressed by a decade of domination by untruths would be, as it emerges even angrier for having to wait.
However much we cannot know the future, and despite the seeds of WWII Generation values left incubating in the minds of Eighties and Fifties Generation members and emerging under tea-bag hats, we can hope that the vision of Pleasantville will eventually hold out.
Hopeful News
People fight harder to keep what they have … for good things they’ve experienced.
Just as in the movie, Pleasantville, when after everyone has experienced color there is no semblance of a wish to return to a black-and-white world, so also we might hope that as our society turns more and more away from war-making, selfishness, race- and sexism, ecological destruction, and all the other WWII Generation evils left behind, and turns more and more toward economic prosperity, peace-keeping, loving our children and having honest relationships, and the reclaiming of our natural environment and ecological balance, there will be fewer and fewer who wish to turn back the times to the unreal black-and-white world of the “Blue Meanies.”
Reason for hope
We see evidence of this in both the elections of Obama and the high popular ratings for him in office. Earlier we observed it in the great support for Clinton even during the assassination attempt on his character.
People of hope
The approval ratings of both of these Sixties-side-of-the-Culture-War Presidents certainly is not comprised only of Baby-Boomers. Sixties Generation values are infectious because they offer so much hope. African-Americans of all ages supported Clinton overwhelmingly; of course they support Obama. We can certainly see that African Americans and people of color in general would not wish a return to the black-and-white world that included discrimination and violence against them.
Women of all ages, for the same reasons, would not be expected to wish a return to a less individualistic status, to a subservient state. And the young will always be idealistic if they are shown any ideals, which is what we can expect the Sixties Generation to be doing for them, as they continue taking their seats in the Wise Elders section of the parliament of sociocultural creation.
Last ditch battle
We have seen examples of this change all around us. In fact the current frenzied attack from the Right — the Tea Party rebellion — can be seen as a desperate last ditch battle in a war they will inevitably lose. That is the good news.

Bad News
How bad the aftermath, the devastation left behind
The bad news is that, similar to the way the Republicans cleaned out the Treasury and left huge deficits and several wars on the desk of the incoming Democratic administration in 2009, thus hobbling it before it began, we have no idea how great will be the destruction left behind from these culture-war waging, albeit waning, authoritarians in the current context.
Heavy with gold
With their gains in stealing from all classes of society below them in their last dying clingings of a dying old guard, a king who simply won’t die, they are heavy with gold. They have the means to buy much more influence than their numbers.
Their power is magnified
The multitudes are growing in size against them, but with their wealth and with the technology and science available now multiplying further their abilities, their capacity to control the minds of much of the population is magnified beyond anything previously and beyond anyone’s abilities to calculate or foresee.
Zombie apocalypse?
So despite the trends toward a natural evolution like we have seen in the past, we might witness a strange aberration — a “zombie apocalypse” created out of the thinking of a time long gone comprised of sick ghostly fantasies of a black-and-white golden age that never was. Such things have happened before; cultures have indeed stagnated for hundreds and even thousands of years. The Middle Ages is one such example of stagnation beneath an oppressive deathly authority that would never renew.
Still, despite the scientific and technological monkey wrenches that might permanently upset a natural order of progression, it is more likely that things will work out as they have most of the time than that we will see an aberrant development. There is, after all, at least as much technology and science catalyzing progressive change as is not.
The Positive … Good News?
And the evidence for a natural development is there for all with eyes to see. With so much change needed, it is easy to forget how much has changed for the positive since the Sixties. Still, with no inclination to see it, no amount of listing of the evidence will bring them into view.
What might be helpful, though, is to note some other analogies from the movie Pleasantville which can provide insight as to what may be on the horizon or at least be considered food for speculation:
It takes a village; we are a global village
Whereas the black-and-white Pleasantville ends at the town’s borders and turns round again to the center of town, the post-color Pleasantville roads continue going, connecting Pleasantville with the rest of the world. Thus, with color and by inference imagination and thinking for oneself, Pleasantville has become part of a larger world, one in which Pleasantville citizens can participate and in which they can travel and take up residence. This represents the global village, the coming together of the interests of all nations — the emerging “global economy.”
We have what really brings down tyrants — the power of individuals is also magnified by technology
But perhaps most of all, this connection to a larger world represents those factors of modern telecommunications and travel that have made the world open to the eyes of all, which is the real reason the Iron Curtain fell, the real reason apartheid was overthrown, the real reason democratic revolution is coming to the Middle East and may yet be causative in bringing democracy to places like China and Iran, despite their oppressive propped-up elder-archies, their kings who will not die, their frozen non-renewing social processes.
The W’s legacy finally overthrown by the WWW?
And the most potent analogy of all: the World Wide Web, bringing together all peoples of the world into a collective consciousness sharing ideas and together shaping a world, not just a neighborhood, with true democratization of information, uncontrollable by any wealthy elite of any country or any generation.
Stay Tuned
Finally, the image at the end of Pleasantville is the most apt for what we may next expect: The only thing we know for sure is that it will be different.


PART TWO
CLASS WAR — THE RISE AND FALL OF “OBVIOUS TRUTHS”
In Part Two we look at how the Big Lie continued in the past five decades of America. We look more deeply into the class war that has been behind the culture war as laid out in Part One. We see the fifty-year invisible “family” revealed — the “community” that surrounded all Americans and affected every aspect of their lives, including, and intentionally, the basic components of one’s personality and the erosion of reason, soul, and independent thought or action.
“Obvious Truths”
Part Two of Culture War, Class War, this part on “Obvious Truths,” delineates the history of the American Republican Party’s incredibly disciplined, relentlessly persistent, and amazingly cohesive — seemingly coordinated — nearly fifty-year campaign to gain advantage and wealth for their benefactor corporations and the “Filthy Rich,” through totally concocted untruths. These falsehoods were introduced carefully, slowly, and therefore invisibly, over time, one-by-one with persistent, relentless repetition replacing reason or rational persuasion; along with a coordinated campaign whose goal was the creation of an American Mind eroded of rationality and confused and made fertile and desperately receptive to these fabrications seamlessly portrayed as truths.
These “obvious truths” were employed together with an exact and strategic use of misinformation precisely targeted and measured for the achievement of specific ends. These were combined with their campaign to physically and financially weaken the American public through the simultaneous, and equally slow, meticulous, and perfectly coordinated introduction of policies, which though not invisible were cleverly packaged and perfectly timed to confuse the obvious step-by-step and year-by-year connections of these policies with their cumulative, increasingly successful results.
The intended goal was the castration of the power of all Americans except for the “filthy rich” and the Republican leadership, their lackeyed public faces. Coincident with this goal, what was sought were the lessening of Americans’ power to act constructively to alleviate even their clearly felt and increasing suffering; the slow but comprehensive elimination of rational thought and ability to reason in the American Mind; and the creation of an American consciousness clouded and afog in confusion and thus forgetful of its past as a point of comparison.
What was desired was an American personality splintered and disintegrated and desperate for something however irrational to cling to. Along with such a fractured and weakened psyche, the campaign sought the dismantling of any solidarity of Americans on any large scale. They reasoned this disunity of purpose would be the natural consequence of the average person’s confused state and its inability to discern obvious aspects of reality which, otherwise and in times prior to the campaign, would have been obvious organizing principles giving rise to passionate resistance.
In the past, passionate engagement in action to change one’s circumstances could occur because of the former unconfused clarity in witnessing big events and pervasive, blatant, and universal patterns of change and making the obvious and easy correct interpretations. This clarity created conviction in one’s beliefs, rooted in first-hand observation. And in the past these convictions were reinforced virtually universally by the great majority of Americans, who also witnessed the obvious same things and made the apparent and doubtless interpretations that cried out from them.
In contrast to the former American personality, this campaign by an American, and increasingly global, elite worked to create an apathetic, neutered American easily manipulated to the ends of wealthy overseers.
Our Invisible “Family”
This reveals the fifty-year invisible family and community that surrounded all Americans and affected every aspect of their lives, including, and intentionally, the basic components of one’s personality, and the erosion of reason, Soul, and independent thought or action.
I explain how only because of increasingly cocky and greedy acts and extreme over-reaching “in broad daylight,” before the entire world, did this malevolent surround become visible. These brutish and thievish over-reaches displayed an incredible disregard for, disrespect of, indeed, an actual literal inability of the “Filthy Rich” and their Republican puppets to SEE American People, who were the recipients of these attacks.
Together these reveals — displayed unintentionally however blatantly and unknowingly by the Republicans and the “Filthy Rich” …  and before the entire world — disclosed to the masses of Americans some “cracks,” “stains,” or textures in the “dome” of unreality they’d existed in, which had made them blind to Reality itself, and had kept them in a near zombie-like dream reality.
As this awakening continued, some began remembering events, the memories of which had been “bleached” out of awareness until just then, and then with remembering they realized how they had been trained like animals their entire lives for the uses, whatever they would be, of the “Filthy Rich,” and been trained then to forget that.
It is clear that the “Filthy Rich” had an absolute certainty of their success because of their unmitigated power. What is also evident is the absolute inability of the “Filthy Rich” … which was the shocking thing they’d carelessly let out and therefore displayed to the World … the absolute inability of the Republicans and the “Filthy Rich” to actually notice — let alone view or act towards — Americans as anything even living or having sentient ability, let alone as humans, people, or individuals.
And as for the term “fellow Americans” often employed by Rich-publican politicos in addressing the masses, if that thought even crossed your mind for a second as being anything but a device, you are not fully appreciating just how literally I mean for my words to be taken. You may very well, in fact, be deeply dreaming and have missed the crack in the dream state that had shone the light in the eyes of a sufficiently large segment of the world population as to cause them to come out of trance and begin to untie their formerly invisible bonds, so that they could try looking around, which led to the realization of the reality that had been blocked from view, and the beginnings of investigations into the real truths of their existence, and to this series of expositions, among others, delineating the actual, formerly invisible profile of the actual actors in Americans’ lives and their processes of control, as well as the things in their lives that were determined for them by the “Filthies,” though ordinary folks thought they had been making decisions for themselves.
And the last aspects of this series delineates the real factors in our lives and the outlines of the real intentions for us these puppet masters have had, and have even now in mind.


CHAPTER 8
CREATING AN AMERICAN MIND
Creating an American Mind and Personality: The Power of Money to Persuade … When You Happen to Be Poor
“The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths’” discusses the history of the American Republicans’ incredibly disciplined, relentlessly persistent, and amazingly cohesive, seemingly coordinated nearly fifty-year campaign to gain advantage and wealth for their benefactor corporations and the “filthy rich” through totally concocted untruths.
Changing the World?
This started when I was reading over a post I had written. The title was relevant, and it triggered this whole thing. The title was “On Cultural Change, Consciousness, and Music.” And I described it as so: “The perfect confluence of context, moment, and person makes history … Obama’s astonishing rise to the Presidency, for example. But the perfect alignment of a nation’s or world’s deep mood, the moment, and a musician or artist can change the world forever. For example, The Beatles.”
Times weren’t always like this
After reading that, I imagined someone else viewing it, and I considered how chances are it would be someone younger than me — for I am old enough. That is part of what this is about. I am old enough to have seen some things, and I remember some things that people growing up in this day and age would have no conception of. Those more recently coming of age are used to a particular American setting somewhat different than the one I knew. Growing up in a particular context, naturally they would think that is the way things are and how they have to be; they could not know any differently.
“Obvious truths” is about how I saw things change
I was born in 1950, so I am aware of other ways that America has been. This part of the book, on “Obvious Truths,” is a lot about how I saw things change. Specifically, I look at the changes in the way we view ourselves, our lives, and authority; I have yet to hear anyone else mention these kinds of changes.
But, really, change the world we did
Getting back to that younger person reading that description, I imagined this other person seeing what I wrote about the Beatles and all that, about changing the world … changing the world! In the harsh light of their cold-hearted reality and the comfortable assuredness of their beliefs, I figured they would consider me naive, if not more. How could that person understand? But, really, change the world we did.
Music’s Power to Persuade
Addressing that younger person, I started writing, “If the title’s claim sounds silly or trite to you then you are operating out of a social prejudice we carry from childhood, particularly around status. And you haven’t stopped to evaluate and compare.” Now, I know that sounds kind of harsh, but it comes together, you’ll see.
For one thing, leaders and politicians, even great ones, can only alter the course of events slowly and meticulously. Sweeping changes cannot happen by fiat as they depend on the people’s passionate involvement, which you cannot create. In the case of a dictatorship — for example, Hitler’s Germany, or Kim “Big Little Man’s” North Korea — that passion might be faked, probably it would need to be faked. Still, even in a free society, politicians can only use words; and no matter how stirring those words, they can reach only so deep inside. It is with great difficulty that political leaders try to move the soul of a nation; most of that mood is untouchable to them.
Sergeant Pepper
Meanwhile music, in particular, more potently than any other art form, has the capacity to alter consciousness. I will explain that later; it is an area I have done a lot of study in. It is a part of my profession.
Anyway, music affects your feelings and so it affects your consciousness. So its effects will really stay with you more than words will. Music is a more powerful thing, and it has been used consciously to try to sway the spirits of humans ever since the times of shamans.
But music is a much more powerful thing when the perfect combination of mood, context, and music come together. If you think music is not so powerful then explain why music is required at virtually any social gathering … particularly, when there is involved any attempt to persuade the feelings of the attendees. Have you ever noticed that? What is truly shocking is how music can even be more powerful than vast piles of money put against it.
I said, can be. In talking about music’s power to persuade I am reminded of political rallies and such.
The Persuasive Power of Money … When You Happen to Be Poor
On the other side from the power of leaders’ words of inspiration, which is limited, of music’s more effective persuasions, and the potency of passion and heartfelt feeling naturally arising in people, consider the power of money. Money in the hands of the “filthy rich” is used in a variety of ways and obviously has tremendous persuasive powers of its own.
And here is what I am getting at: Money — as arrayed against music, passion, and social movements — is especially more powerful in a situation where the people have been put in financial jeopardy because of the prosperity of the rich. As an aside, I remember a time in America’s past when people were more prosperous and confident about their abilities to manage their lives. I do not believe it is a coincidence that in those days money wielded by the wealthy had less power to persuade and people were less easily bought than today. It was said that people then were wont to question authority more than they were likely to bow down to it. I will get back to this later.
Anyway, these are the things I was thinking about when this started.

“Obvious Truths” — The True Sounding Untruths — in the Creation of the American Mind
The True Sounding Untruths. (Hell! It’s Obvious the Earth is Flat!)
Then I started thinking about that: the “filthy rich,” specifically, the power of the “filthy rich” and their money. I began to consider it more deeply. Remember this is called the rise and fall of “obvious truths.” I was drawn to looking into those commonly accepted truisms — truth-sounding but not true; let us call them “obvious truths.” Not true but sounding true: Think of how correct it must have sounded at one time to hear that the Earth is flat. So, an “obvious truth” is something unthinkingly accepted as true but is not actually true when thought about or looked into. I considered some of these errant habits of thinking and looked at where and why they arose and why they would take hold and have power despite having no foundation in reality.
Doing so, I came up with this description of “obvious truths” and the context birthing them:
These untruthy truisms arise out of the American Republicans’ disciplined, relentless, persistent, cohesive fifty-year campaign to gain advantage and wealth for their benefactor corporations and the “filthy rich” through totally concocted untruths, which are introduced carefully, slowly and therefore invisibly, over time….
Just accept my word for it for now; I will explain….
These untruths are introduced carefully, slowly and therefore invisibly, over time, one by one, with persistent, relentless repetition replacing reason or rational persuasion, as part of a coordinated comprehensive campaign whose goal is the creation of an American mind eroded of rationality and confused and made fertile and desperately receptive to these fabrications of the Republicans seamlessly portrayed as truths.
Precise and Strategic Use of “Obvious Truths” in the Creation of the American Mind
I know this is sounding pretty wild. But, you’ll see. Hang in there and see if I can support it. As I was explaining,
Their goal
The Republicans’ goal, to be precisely and inexorably attained, is the creation of an American mind eroded of rationality and confused. And this mind is to be shepherded by the exact and strategic use of misinformation specifically targeted and measured for the achievement of specific ends. This seeding of minds is to work dialectically with their campaign to physically and financially weaken the American public with the simultaneous and equally slow and meticulous and precisely timed introduction of policies….
I said, I can support this….
Their means
This introduction of policies, which though not invisible are cleverly packaged, is to be perfectly timed to confuse the obvious step-by-step, year-by-year connections of these policies and their cumulative increasingly successful results.
Now, again, bear with me….
Their intended results
These results are the castration of the American … of Americans in general — except for the “filthy rich” and the Republican leadership which are their lackey public faces. So, the intent of this long campaign, employing “obvious truths” as munitions, is the crippling of Americans’ power in particular to resist even the inexorable increase in the clearly felt suffering heaped upon them as these years went by.
I’ll give you a hint, alright? I remember living in a time that was not so economically depressed. I watched it slowly get worse, and worse, and worse; and I saw people suffering more, and more, and more, okay? But I did not hear people complaining more, and more, and more. That’s a hint.
Their vision
Okay, so what we have is Americans’ power monkey wrenched through policies directed at them and sustained by “obvious truths” pushed by Republicans whose purpose is to diminish people, to reduce their power, and ultimately to bring them down financially while raising the wealthies higher.
Recipe for The Matrix: Misinformation, Repetition, Impoverishment
Weaving the Matrix
Getting back to the truisms themselves, remember, as I said, these totally concocted untruths are designed to be surreptitiously introduced — carefully, slowly and therefore invisibly over time — one-by-one. They are to be planted through persistent relentless repetition, not by rational persuasion, and are intended to replace reason and independent thought.
They are meant to do their work within an invisible matrix as part of a coordinated campaign whose purpose is the construction of an American mind lacking in its ability to reason and confused. Lastly, this mind is to be made fertile and desperately receptive to these fabrications seamlessly portrayed as truths through the exact and strategic use of misinformation precisely targeted and measured for the achievement of specific ends.
Alright? I said bear with me, I’ll be able to give you some examples of this … or I’ll make a fool out of myself, that’ll be your choice …  
These specific objectives are also to be brought to fruition through a massively funded, all inclusive, and strategically targeted campaign to financially weaken the American public through incremental changes in national fiscal policy as well as — note this — in national culture. National policy changes are to be achieved through the simultaneous and equally slow, meticulous, and precisely timed introduction of policy initiatives. Though these national initiatives could not be invisible, they are to be cleverly packaged as well as sneakily introduced and are to be perfectly timed to confuse the obvious step-by-step, year-by-year connections of these policies and their cumulative, increasingly successful results.
Okay? I’ll get into the policies, soon. But I am starting with a conclusive statement, and it might seem over the top. You may think it too bold, but I think I can back it up.
Again, those sought for results include the emasculation of the average American through sabotage of her or his powers to act in an effective way in any and all aspects of their lives. To be achieved at the same time is the fortification of the power and wealth of the filthy rich puppeteers and their lackey public faces in the Republican Party.
Instrumental in strengthening the wealthy class of insidious directors is the weakening of the remainder of the population’s abilities. And in particular and ultimately the intention is to cobble the ordinary person’s power to get out from under or to alleviate for very long the inexorable increase in their clearly felt suffering as the years go by. For this suffering and the helplessness about it is crucial to the directors’ success.
Bear with me….
The Creation of Confusion, The Stifling of Conviction and Thus Passion
Now, the key to all this being brought about is the creation of an American consciousness clouded in fog and confusion and thus forgetful of its past as a point of comparison. In this way splintered … we’re talking about the American mind … splintered, and disintegrated, it is desperate for something however irrational to cling to.
Along with or coincident with the orchestration of the American mind was the dismantling of any solidarity of Americans on any large scale. This follows, because of the confused state that the average American would normally have and its inability — the person’s inability or the American mind’s inability — to discern obvious aspects of reality and distortions of it (lies) which in times prior would have provided obvious organizing standards around which would be passionate resistance. This is what could and would happen in times previous to the Republicans’ campaign.
For example, I went through a time where people would go into the streets and there were people who complained. Recently we have talked about Bush … there is a book out about how Bush actually created a dictatorship during his eight years.

It’s amazing to me that we all knew that, the corruption was so rampant it was like on a daily basis we were hearing things that in a former time — the Sixties, the Fifties, anytime — would have caused Bush to be tossed out on his ear. This time, somehow, it’s like there was nobody in the streets. People went about their lives as if ignoring what was going on….

Even more recently, we saw Republicans take over the Supreme Court by refusing to do their Constitutional obligation in approving a Supreme Court Justice, when Scalia died. Any other time, we would have had mass uprisings at this mini-coup de etat. And right now we are watching a goober president, beholden to a Russian oligarchy, as he not only benefits himself and his cronies financially through his (stolen) office but slowly unravels the fabric of the largest and most long-lasting democracy on Earth, before our very eyes. While he tightens the screws on people’s ability to complain, attacking the press and removing freedom of speech in all kinds of ways, including removing net neutrality, folks stand by in fascinated and terrified awe at this train wreck gradually flying apart in all directions before us.. With only a handful of Democrats as yet ready to call for impeachment, and the rest, along with society, putting their heads under their pillows hoping it will all somehow, please, just go away.


Okay, so there I’m giving you a taste, alright? anyway …  

So, I said that in a previous time there would have been passionate, a passionate response. Now I say it’s passionate because of the former unconfused minds’ clarity in witnessing big events and pervasive, blatant universal patterns of change and making the obvious and easy correct interpretations. So what I’m saying is clarity of thought creates sureness of action and sureness of one’s feelings, whereas confused minds lends itself to apathy or misguided self-destructive acts. In just a bit I’ll get into how these minds get confused and I think you’ll begin to see some of those things inside of yourself because I think we’re all feeling some of it.
Anyway, so this clarity, of seeing these things happening, created conviction in one’s belief which was rooted in first-hand observation. I have in Part One shared some of my first-hand observations of events, especially those happening in my formative years. The conviction of my thinking is rooted in such events.
At the time, I also experienced much confirmation and affirmation of my views on these events. So, in general, in times previous to the one we’re in, this clarity and conviction born of first-hand observation was reinforced virtually universally by the great majority of Americans around them who also witnessed the obvious same things and made the apparent and doubtless interpretations that cried out from them.
An example, okay. America once had a president who was much despised, though he was actually not as bad as Bush. But the American people were unfettered in their feelings about this president’s actions, and their refusal to put up with his despicable acts caused Nixon to resign.
So, first off, we have former American minds capable of seeing obvious wrongness, injustice, illegality, untruth, deception, or worse. In our example, this might be the suffering and/or death of innocent young men or the unspeakable horror being inflicted on the bystanding innocents in the conflict they are engaged in — the Vietnam War is one such example.
Once with clarity seeing, then about it gathering with great conviction — undoubting and unconfused conviction — and passion in large numbers and in solidarity and sameness of purpose to right these obvious wrongs, or their like.
It all starts with clearly identifiable rallying points in obvious view of the great masses of Americans, however.
Too many people are unaware or forget that there was a great union movement in America, there was a great antiwar movement in the country …  okay? You don’t see much of that action these days. So, this is what I’m getting to, there’s been a change.
So when these great masses of Americans were clearly in solidarity about things they saw were obviously wrong they effected change. Think about it. Go back to the Depression. People knew they were poor and they put Roosevelt in power. Okay? They did something about it.

Anyway, so in times past you might have this clarity of what’s wrong and of your own suffering around it. You are not confused about blatant happenings in the reality around you. And the people around you, they see it as well. And they confirm it in you. Then you’re pretty sure what the heck’s going on. I mean it’s hard to deny your own reality. But it’s even harder to deny it when other people see it too, and they’re experiencing the same thing.1

The Media’s Capacity to Confirm, Or Deny … Any Wonder Why Americans Are So Confused, or Dumb?
We have former American minds capable of seeing obvious wrongness, injustice, illegality, untruth, deception, or worse: Once with clarity seeing, then about it gathering with great conviction — undoubting and unconfused conviction — and passion in large numbers and in solidarity and sameness of purpose to right these obvious wrongs, or their like. The examples I gave were the union, antiwar, suffragette, and civil rights movements; we could add the Revolutionary War itself and the abolitionist movement. And I mentioned how people rose up for a New Deal and elected Roosevelt during the Great Depression and how Nixon was hounded out of office, yet Bush the Dubya’s crimes — far worse, including “dictatorship” — were not enough even to bring people out into the streets.
It all starts with clearly identifiable rallying points in obvious view of the great masses of Americans, however. In times past you might have this clarity of what’s wrong and of your own suffering around it. You are not confused about blatant happenings in the reality around you. And the people around you, they see it as well. And they confirm it in you. Then you’re pretty sure what the heck’s going on. I mean it’s hard to deny your own reality. But it’s even harder to deny it when other people see it too, and they’re experiencing the same thing.
The Media’s Capacity to Confirm, Or Deny
But what if the media is saying that it ain’t happening? Does that said familiar? At all? It ain’t happening? How about an economic collapse that began years before anybody publicly mentioned it. I remember at the time it was being called a “goldilocks” economy. Yep. As for any collapse,  not happening. Right now I’m not going to say a lot about this as it will appear in a big way beginning with Volume 2 in the Return to Grace series of books.
So anyway, in former times, people came together in solidarity and sameness of purpose to right obvious wrongs, or the like. They had clearly identifiable rallying points visible to the great masses of Americans. These things were talked about in the newspapers, on TV, there was no denying what was obvious.
Now, with solidarity of purpose …  and this is the important part … solidarity of purpose, with Americans united, feeling the same way, wanting change, their feelings were powerful and so significantly altered major events.
You even see that recently. We have a Democrat, Obama, elected to the presidency of the United States. But, look what it took: eight long years of Bush! Wow.
So anyway, solidarity of purpose gives ordinary people combined strength equal or greater to that of the “filthy rich.” The “filthy rich” are the would-be puppet-masters, the deciders and initiators of the events that have been witnessed so widely, including by the masses. These egregious acts, happenings, or developments brought the masses together in singleness of purpose to decry the source of the wrongs. Crucially, they needed to know the perpetrators of unhappy happenings; it needed to be clearly pointed out who were those responsible for the wrongs universally observed and condemned.
These things known, the result could be the massive gathering of intentions, a movement, perhaps a great social movement, united in purpose, against the observed wrong, seeking justice on the perpetrators and some sort of social or cultural change that might possibly or would definitely prevent future events of the same or similar sort of wrongness.
Now, these things did happen in America, folks. Not long ago in historical time but before our day in America, food used to come out from corporations and got people sick or dead. So Americans created a Food and Drug Administration to remedy that. People created a government entity to represent them as a counterweight against the power of the corporations.
Why did this happen? It was because people were pissed, and it was because it was obvious what was going on.
But when things aren’t obvious and you have massive lies being told and you have comprehensive, pervasive media exposure to those lies — those untruths in direct conflict with people’s own observations — people can get confused. Confused, people’s power gets dissipated.
So I’ve kind of told you part of it, haven’t I? I just felt I was giving you too much and without any grounding.
Now let’s take a look at how the minute daily elements of our American way of life were orchestrated for ends not our own.
.


CHAPTER 9
CREATING AN AMERICAN LIFE
POWER VERSUS PASSION, MONEY VERSUS AUTHENTICITY — OPPOSING WAYS OF CHANGING AMERICA
In the last half century, Americans have experienced unprecedented changes in their lives, their lifestyles, in what it means to be alive and human in America in these times. Rarely have societies experienced this kind of change. What is even more astounding is the way the changes send us shooting dramatically in one way and then in the other direction.
Of course it is amazing that people are able to manage these kinds of change. But we don’t do this easily.
Let us look at the side-to-side careening of American life in that time and where we are today in that.

Creating an America Worthy of its Name
In introducing “Obvious Truths,” I talked about how politicians and leaders can only do so much and that the effects of their words are often fleeting. I said that social change that’s either reinforced or carried forward, or even initiated, by something like music or something that affects your feelings, can be greater and longer lasting. The powerful feelings that are stirred this way can affect people for their whole lives and even have influence for generations. I mentioned that these emotional influences reach more deeply into people because feelings exist at a deeper level of the brain undergirding words, thought, or even reason.
Finally, keep in mind that this is titled the rise and fall of “obvious truths.”
Obvious “Truth” — “Money Changes Everything”…. Really? … Only?
So I’m gonna start looking over what has transpired so far. I said at the beginning there was a title, one that pointed to the power and grandeur of these social movements. I wrote at the time that if the title’s claim — casting ordinary folks, along with revolutionary art, as the instigators of grand movements … the people of the Sixties and the music of bands like the Beatles, for example — sounds silly or trite to you that you are operating out of social prejudices we all carry from childhood, like most people do, particularly around status.
And by that I meant we have a tendency to assume that it is money that changes everything and that ordinary folks have little power without it.
For example, we assume that artists and musicians can’t affect anything. They more often arise from non-affluent beginnings; we have the term, starving artist, for example. Their power in society is considered to be as minimal as their finances.

“Real World” Versus “Flaky”
But this is not true — that is what I’m getting at. For, has the power of people been created with money, solely? Well, I think there’s a tendency to think it is.
Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Not long ago, America and I went through such a change arising artistically from the masses. The Beatles affected us in such a great way that we were changed forever, and society’s traditional momentum in a direction benefiting its moneyed royalty was stopped and even reversed. Their music and that of those like them changed the world in terms of the way we saw peace. The way we saw love. The way we saw drugs. The way we saw tolerance of other people … the way we looked at other people.
Status and money, more than ever, determining what is “real”
But I’m not going to go too far there, because that’s all coming up, too. I’m just saying that we do have these preconceptions about status and money that affects what we think is more important or powerful. It affects what we think of as “real” and “real world” versus what is considered silly or superfluous … “flaky” … “kumbaya.”
I was talking earlier about how, these days, it seems like only people with money have power. Everybody knows that and assumes it can only be that way. This is so because many people today have not had the experience of seeing it being different than that.
The Exception That Reveals the Rule
There is one exception and as it happens this exception does reveal the rule.

The Blue Meanies dissed, dismissed
For Obama’s rise to the presidency was startling, shocking even, because it was a unique phenomenon for this time. It was a grand and sweeping phenomenon because people got a chance, for the first time in a long time, to see that ordinary folks getting together could effect massive change … without the power of gobs of money. We can recall how his campaign was largely done over the internet and with small contributions. People could feel again, some for the first time, that they had the power in their passion and numbers to throw off the shackles of the filthy rich. Unbelievable.
Creating an America That Is Not: Stolen Elections, Complacent Electorate
Obama’s success was astounding, but look what it took! Look at what had to happen before a Democrat, Obama, and the first African-American ever, could win the presidency. It only came about after a long time of national suffering, disgrace, war, loss of life, incompetence, cronyism, scandal, atrocity, erosion of rights, squandering of money, tragedy, and more. Bush was in the presidency for a full eight years; he actually got to steal a second election.
The Blue Meanies — Stolen Election
It is clear that Bush’s first term was not won fairly. Even putting aside the intimidation of black voters in Florida and similar unfair and illegal practices perpetrated by Republicans, we still have the fact that Bush was given the presidency by a decision of the Supreme Court. Our history records how vote counting was stopped before the outcome could be determined; the Supreme Court decided on a winner, Bush; and subsequently the vote tally came out that Gore had actually won the presidency! These are simply the facts, the things not in dispute.

The Rule Itself — Money Changes Everything.
The facts of Bush’s second election are less well known; in fact they are more assiduously covered up. Still, in the vote tally against John Kerry it should not have even been close … but for more obscure reasons.
There is plenty of documented public evidence that the electronic voting machines were fixed, making the outcome fraudulent. The machines were owned by Diebold Corporation, a firm solidly in the Republican camp, the head of which promised the Republicans, before the election, that he was going to get Bush elected. I mean, seriously. Isn’t that pretty much an admission that the voting machines were going to be fixed?
And in fact this is what they discovered to have taken place.
Now, is this not the kind of thing that in the past would have brought people out into the streets?1
Anyway, it was confirmed, to some extent even prior to the election, that even a person walking by with an iPhone or something similar could hack into these electronic voting machines and change the votes. That is, if they had the correct access information. And the only ones who had that and therefore could decide the vote tally were the Diebold Corporation in league with the Republicans. Is it any wonder Bush “won”?
The Battleground for America
“Only people know just how to change the world.” — J. Lennon
So the two things of relevance in this example are that in previous times this would have brought people out into the streets, would have caused people to rise up in outrage against authority when it was found out.

The Duty, and Failure, of the Press
Which brings out the second relevant point: The public’s power could be stirred only by these facts coming out and becoming widely known. This information did come out; entire popular books were written describing how and that it was done. It came out in the broadcast media as well.
It is unlikely that you know that, however. That can only be because it wasn’t told enough in the media, that it was downplayed in the media, covered up, or the media directed your attention away from it. And that is the problem I’m getting at.
Changing America by Changing its People
But you see there’s another thing that happened. Even with a responsible media you have to have a citizenry that is open to this kind of information and able and willing to process it and draw conclusions from it. That is what I will be addressing now.
Your Mind Made Fertile for the Planting of Lies
Going back, I was saying we all have these prejudices regarding what is deemed powerful and important. We all have stuff from childhood that makes us shrink before authority, cower before money, status, and power. We all have irrational ideas magnifying the power of our oppressors, telling us to obey, to not question, to go along with that which others would have of us but which is not in our own interest and in fact brings suffering into our lives. And on top of all that, these early imprints and social teachings would have us rationalize our subjugation and deny our felt experience ever fending off inner and outer information, clues threatening to our precious conscious untruths and instilled self-sabotaging beliefs and notions.

Thinking About There Not Being Enough Time to Think
But you know sometimes you have a chance to kick back and not be caught up in the struggle to survive. You have a chance to reflect on your circumstances, your prejudices, and to re-evaluate matters. You have leisure time in which to do more than survive, to actually re-create, re-new yourself, and to grow in wisdom so you are not so blinkered by the blinders of the comfortable ignorance of grade-school propaganda and other early conditionings, prejudices. So society benefits both through your productivity but also through the fact that you have leisure time to become a wiser social actor. You have this leisure time….
Or, do you?
Well, not too long ago we had more leisure time, let’s put it that way. We had more leisure time; we had more time to pause and reflect. So some things might occur to us that were different than what we originally thought … than our preconceived notions; we might actually change our mind about things if we thought about them. I am not saying that was what everybody did all the time or anything like that. I am saying it could happen, and it happened more. So I’m saying that a lot has changed.
Well, you don’t think we have less leisure time? If you are much younger than me, you probably don’t know. But I am old enough to know that I have never seen Americans so busy … so busy and so preoccupied.
Climbing Down the Ladder of Your Todo List
Backing up, so imagine you or somebody like you is saying, “Ah, naw naw naw, naw, y’know, musicians, ordinary folks, they can’t do anything; they’re not politicians, they’re not powerful, they’re not rich!” Okay? But this person or you may not have had occasion to actually pause your life … to step back from the twenty-four hour climbing down the ladder of your todo list to success. Y’know?
How long is your todo list by the way? Busy, busy all the time is now required for survival concerns. There was a time in which you might be really motivated … you’d see people that were really striving  … trying hard to be a big success or something like that. But it wasn’t required.
Forms Fill Up Free Time … “Fax It Over, I’ll Look At It”
There is also the increased paper load, the mountains of red tape, which is also filling up the supposed “free time” of the average American. Man! What the hell is with that!?
Now they can blame it on computers; they can say it’s because we have more information and they can store larger amounts of it electronically, and they can put more …  aw, c’mon, it’s people deciding that you have to fill things out and that you have to get and give more and more and more and more information, this is a lot of time!
Did you ever buy a house? You sign that Sisyphian hill of documents? I can only just imagine the day when there was just a deed, signed over. I’m not that old.
So, with exorbitantly more paperwork, there’s less time for thought, less time to think. We’re busy, and we’re nervous. Why? We got a lot of red tape, we got a lot of things to do. We’re under stress….  
Taxes to Twist You With
And part of that paperwork … probably the worst part, if you’re like me, is due to the complex and contradictory tax codes. Part of the leisure time lost disappears into the black hole around tax forms. Seriously, I am old enough to have seen taxes get more contradictory and complex over the years. In fact the tax codes are rather convoluted abominations twisting themselves to benefit corporate special interest, with little or no rationale even presented to explain why these special interests should be benefited. And this sort of corporate special interest input into tax codes has just exploded over the years.
In previous times, such things as benefits to any special interest were usually presented to the legislature, and the public, in a particular way to justify them. You can just imagine like, in some kind of bargaining session in Congress, they would say, “Well, if we provide a break here, that’ll result in benefits over in this sector … ” Or they might say, “ … and it benefits our economy as a whole, which will … ” and they might add a few elements into the equation before the inevitable, “it’ll benefit the average American or be a boon to our society as a whole.” And the reaction, we imagine, would be like, “Aw, yeah, yeah … okay.” Then it’s good; it’s approved.
Crazy-Making Social Processes Aid Manipulation
But over time, even this linking to the common good was not necessary, so the tax codes got exceedingly more convoluted and hopelessly contradictory, essentially lacking any reason. We all know that. It’s a dead document, so to speak, which would never, ever, ever be able to be brought back to rational health, so riddled with myriad kinds of cancers which are special interest convolutions of its elements so that it would be impossible to excise them all.
You have probably all heard the story. You call up the tax adviser, you have a question about how to fill something out … how to do something. And you’ll ask one person and they’ll tell you one thing; and then you call back and you get a different person and they’ll tell you something entirely different; then if you call again, somebody else will tell you something again … all different. Well, this is crazy-making.
And that crazy-making takes up your time; and it makes you worry more … and, well, it works itself into your time to ponder things, especially important things.
So, the tax code is hopelessly brain dead, and everyone knows it. Any former link to fairness, reasonableness, or coherency has been severed; it has become a coffin into which anything can be thrown and in which any corporate wish can be granted. So the country has now turned completely into the hands of the corporations, okay?
The Money Changing Everything — The Planting of Lies
And with corporations firmly backing Republicans, the Democrats in every election that I can recall, especially in the presidential elections, always were way underfunded and the GOP overfunded because the Rich-publicans were carrying the wishes of those corporations into the board rooms of Congress along with their huge amounts of money.
Corporations Invest in America (Government)
But these payoffs were small investments to corporations, relative to the benefits they would get in the changes in government policy which affected them. Republicans were — It was obvious … it was all on public record — were getting huge amounts of money going into their campaign coffers and were way overfunded. One hell of a lot of money was put toward putting and keeping Republicans in office. It was not even a fair fight.
Democrats Not Wanting to Be Totally Disarmed
So with no hope then … and this is what I saw happen … Democrats, who were still wanting to work for a better America and therefore better government, were forced into a choice of either continuing to rely only on contributions from the American people … as for example unions, keeping them woefully underfunded, and therefore losing … or to accept what was being offered them also by corporations.
So you began to have some Democrats making compromises with their principles and accepting some corporate money. Though even then it remained true that for the most part Democrats are funded by unions and organizations dealing with issues, like education, health care, seniors, jobs, and so on that affect the average American.
Now, this is where I get to one of those Big Lies, one of those concocted untruths that end up everyone just knowing to be true.
The Lies
Obvious “Truth” — Politicians Are Like the People We Want Others to Think We Are Like (But Aren’t) … Like Who We Pretend to Be
To make this point, I need to back up to that thing related to convoluted tax codes and corporations. I was saying that eventually it was getting to where a huge increase in that problem could be attributed to corporations not even having to justify that the paybacks they wanted were good for America anymore. How did this happen?
Breaking news — politicians are human
Well, we have the situation mentioned where eventually Democrats were virtually required to accept corporate money or else they had no chance to win election. Naturally then, they had to produce at least a little for their benefactor corporations as well.
People can still be good, even if not Mother-Theresa good
It is crucial to keep in mind the fact that Democrats were not getting near as much money from corporations as Republicans, by and large, and they remained largely staying afloat through contributions from unions and from organizations of masses of people pushing issues of overall social benefit. So Democrats were backed for the most part by actual people not corporations; still they had to produce something for the overlords.
Alright, so it happened that Democrats would seek to strengthen their overall hand to accomplish beneficial things for society by tossing occasional bones of tax concessions to their corporate backers. They would go to their gop counterparts and would want something in the tax code, for example. And the Republicans would say, “Well you want that? Well, I’ll give you that, you give me this.” So it could not help but happen that taxes and public policy got more and more convoluted in conforming to these complications and outright contradictions. We saw this increasingly over the second half of the Twentieth Century.
Obvious “Truth” — Both Parties Funded by Special Interests
But Republicans were always seen, rightfully so, as the ones who were representing various corporations and what were called the special interests — defense, big agriculture, big oil, the Chamber of Commerce, insurance companies, big pharma, and so on.
But then this is what also happened: This huge lie was created, becoming a big part of the Matrix, the Matrix of confusion that was being put out to cover up truth. This lie was impossible to make out, blocked out by an omnipresent media saying all the same thing, in rather like this monotone voice almost like Pravda in the old days of the Soviet Union. I saw this happen too. You no longer had differences of opinion you just had the same thing being said.
Anyway, this Big Lie, firmly woven into the fabric of the Matrix as to be both invisible and therefore unchallengeable even by rational arguments … this lie, and I’m sure you’ve heard it is that: Well, both parties are funded by special interests!

Real truth: Democrats funded by a special interest — people
Now, of course, you know you’ve got Big Oil and Big Coal, and you’ve got the Pharmaceuticals and the Defense Industry and they’re funding the Republicans, and they would come back and say, “Special interests?! Well you Democrats have them too. What about your unions? You’re being funded by them!”
Well let’s just take the unions for starters, okay? Seriously, the unions as special interests? The unions?
Real truth: Republicans funded by non-people — corporations
Okay, let me step back. We got corporations, which are a few people getting rich and it’s not even benefiting people. They’re not even including the people who work at the corporations, because they’re union people, maybe, or else they’re non-union people but they’re certainly not making any money off of what the corporations are getting in laws and benefits from their paid-for Republican representatives.
Obvious “Truth” — Unions Are a “Special” Interest
So, what is a special interest now? Okay, so, is the American public a special interest? Wait, I thought the government was supposed to be for the people. Now if the people are workers, primarily; and at one time there was a lot of them that were union workers, okay? But even if they’re not union workers, aren’t the unions aiming for benefits for their membership that also carries over to the non-union workers? If the unions are able to get medical benefits, for example, which is one big thing that they pushed for, well then it became common for all workers to get medical benefits.

Is it a “special” interest if it benefits virtually everyone?
Okay … that’s a special interest? I thought special interest was something that was against the interests of the American people and it was only going to benefit a certain small segment, a certain handful of people. That’s why it’s called special, isn’t it? But there’s the Republicans saying, “Oh, they’re unions, workers benefits are for unions.” And I just wonder if the unions are just a handful of people, who the hell is making all the stuff in America, who’s building the buildings, who’s … ? Geez! I think you got the point.
For, I’m sure you’ve all heard it, and I’m sure you’ve all accepted it that “unions are special interests.” But I just don’t get it how … well maybe I don’t have a high paying job, or anything like that. But I work … doesn’t everybody? … I’m a working person and unions aren’t against me. I just wish there were more unions, so that whenever I would have a job or something like that I could have one to represent me against the powerful corporate owners.
Put out to cover up and confuse
So here, quite clearly, we have one of those obvious “truths” put out to cover up and confuse clear thinking: “Unions are a special interest.”
Obvious “Truth” — Education Is a “Special” Interest
But what else is a “special interest” for Democrats? Oh, it’s the teacher’s union or stuff like that, or, education.
Oh, great! So, what is that again? So education is for who now? Okay, now that’s a special interest. Mmmm hm. That’s a special interest? Does that mean that there are like only a few people that have kids that need education?

Education is a “special” interest … it is only for those who own brains
I’m starting to get sick here. I don’t quite get it. I mean I’ m getting confused, you know what I mean. This is what I’m talking about, this is that irrationality: Special interest, education? Aw, c’mon, c’mon, I want to say.
An America without people is an America that doesn’t need education
I mean, c’mon, aw, c’mon, somebody, somebody point out that education is not a special interest. It’s …  Jesus! We won’t have an America in the future unless we have kids!
Don’t need education …  it doesn’t matter if stupid people make our corporate and governmental decisions. *sarcasm*
Not to mention how can it be a special interest if were we to give more money to education, we would have better educated people growing up … these people would even benefit the corporations by being better corporate employees. They would, in fact, benefit all of society by making better decisions.
I kind of think we have an idea of what a big difference intelligence makes …  what a big difference it is when you have intelligent people running things and when you don’t.
We kind of know how that works (stupid people running things)
For didn’t we have a kind of a little contrast there; didn’t we have a kind of a little experiment in that recently? I believe it had to do with C-student Bush … if you remember some things like Katrina and things like that … or maybe what hits you is something about a huge costly war that … well, it was gotten into on false grounds, illegally, we were lied to … but the whole matter and even the conduct of it, wasn’t it all rather … stupid what happened?

Bush gets presidency — kind of like he won the lottery
Such things that happened under Bush are incompetencies that never happened before. Never! Not even under Republicans. We got Bush here, taking more time off from the presidency than any president in history … it was kind of like he thought he won the lottery or something. Didn’t even bother to look like he had a job to do. Wasn’t his first press conference something like ten months after he was sworn in?
Obama gets presidency — kind of like he got a job!
Now, contrast that with Harvard Law Review editor Obama. How many press conferences did he have after taking office? How frequently have you seen him on the job? He’s handling some of the biggest problems this country has ever had. And people are impressed that he can do it. And there’s so much of it. So, isn’t intelligence kind of a good thing for us all?
Anyway. You get the point. Education a special interest? Seriously now.
Obvious “Truth” — The Sick and the Elderly Are “Special” Interests
How about medical care? Health and life are not for the common good. God, no, we don’t need medical care, that’s a special interest, that’s just for them people who get sick … and I’m starting to get sick here, I mean, y’know, for people who get sick? C’mon!
Health care is a special interest … it’s only for people who have bodies
And, it’s like, “Oh, no, no, it’s not just for those people who get sick, it’s those people who have to pay medical bills.” Oh, I see, then that must be just for…. Who’s gotta pay medical bills, again? Well none of us have to pay medical bills, it’s all free, right? Nooo, it’s not.
The elderly are a special interest … it only benefits those who are affected by time
And is it really necessary to point out that seniors and the retired are not a special interest? I suppose if you’re thinking the current group is the last humans ever to reach an advanced age it would limit their numbers some.
So unless we all suddenly stop getting older, help to the elderly and the retired is help to us all; it is not special. Am I not right?
Obvious “Truth” — Democrats and Republicans Are Equal
So, where do you hear anybody pointing this out? I don’t know but if you’re hearing the same media and TV coverage that I am, you’re hearing that they’re equal. The Democrats and Republicans are equal because they’re equally funded by special interests, and the special interests…. What are these special interests again? Well, sometimes it’s like, “What are those special interests?” “Well, it’s the union, and the education, and it’s the medical care.” Oh, geez, just listen sometimes.
Obvious “Truth” — Corporations Fund the Elections of both Republicans and Democrats
And by the way, I said this was the rise and fall of Obvious “Truths.” The idea that both parties are funded by huge corporations, what they call large donor contributors, was blatantly revealed as the lie it is during the 2008 presidential election.
Remember, contrasted with Republican McCain’s funding from those real special interests — that related to Big Business and Defense … what Eisenhower termed the military-industrial complex … Democrat Obama ran a campaign in 2008 where the donations were voluntarily capped at an unusually low level. The upper limit was set at $1,000, which meant that his backing would have to come from numerous small contributors not special interests benefiting only a group. And, amazingly, he received a record amount of money to support him. It was said he had all kinds of money more than McCain, even though McCain was backed by corporations.
Then I must be a corporation, because I gave to Obama
Now, how did that happen? Well it could only have happened because the masses of Americans wanted to give, even if it was $5, $10, or whatever … whatever they had. It required that donations come from a huge number more of people than contributed to McCain. I gave. My wife gave … several times. Didn’t you give, too?
For a change, in recent memory, this demonstrated that strength I was talking about before — that strength that’s of so many people feeling the same way, therefore acting in solidarity with each other. Surprisingly this happened despite them not being in face-to-face contact with each other, in general. This was one of the interesting things about this development: that it was largely accomplished just through the power of the internet.
It’s the Internet Versus the Matrix
So the internet kind of brought folks together in solidarity of purpose the same way maybe a rally or demonstration in the past would have brought people together.
It was significant that most of this happened from the actions of people sitting alone in front of computers, not buoyed up by the effusiveness of a demonstration. It showed an unexpected power of social media.

In the past, face-to-face, like demonstrations, were where people connected with people like themselves
Remember, in demonstrations in the past … and I’ve been to them … you would go and you would share your feelings of outrage and hurt, you would be affirmed in the importance of your concerns and be instilled with hope of a change in them, most of all you would have your sense of what was going on expressed out loud. Previous to that, you may have been reading the newspapers, say, and feeling, this is wrong, this is an outrage. This would have motivated you to attend a demonstration, and there you would have found other people who were feeling the same things. So you would be confirmed in your beliefs that it was wrong.
In the past, face-to-face, like demonstrations, were where people learned and grew in understanding
Nowadays, social media and the internet have provided a similar thing where you can express your concern and rage and find others who feel the same way you do and so confirm your beliefs, and even expand on them with more information. So you can grow in your understanding of events and in your knowledge of what you can do about them.
This function of developing your insight and your effectiveness was provided by the rallies and demonstrations in the pre-electronic eras. The point is that over the election of Obama people connected again; and it was people not loads of military-industrial money that got him elected.
Bush brought us all together….  
Well, that’s one thing that Bush gave back to America. He united us. He united us around at least one obvious rallying standard. He made our minds finally clear that … it’s true he’s an idiot! It’s true Republicans can’t handle government. It’s true that they will claim to be fiscally responsible and yet … what happened? Well the largest economic collapse in American history second to the Depression … and it was the largest collapse in the economy of the world. So, thank you, George W. Bush!2
Obvious “Truth” — Republicans/ Conservatives Are Fiscally Responsible
So this financial “meltdown” is coming from the people who are supposed to know so much about economics. But at the same time, like McCain said, “I don’t know too much about economics.” He don’t know too much about economics! Who does McCain think he is, the Herman’s fucking Hermits!? Anyway, McCain kind of spilled the beans there. Some of the actual truth came it: About conservatives and fiscal matters … Republicans “don’t know too much” about it.
Coming Up — Watch Black Be Made White, White Be Made Black! Oh, Those Rascally Magical Republicans!
Okay, that’s it for Part One of “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’” — Chapters Eight and Nine in this book.
Part Two is available here too — Chapters Ten through Thirteen. And in Part Two I go more into how they were able to get American people — including the media and the pundits and everybody — to accept this obvious unreality which is that both parties are funded by “special interests”; and you probably believe that yourself.
Oh, The Things They Do
But I think if you hear what I have to say, I think I’ll convince you of how amazing it was that they were able to pull that off. I think it will shock you to see how they could get so many people thinking irrationally about something that is so obviously not true. And there’ll be other things like that too.
Watch ‘em Turn Black into White!
There’s a pattern I’ll be talking about where … it’s like black is made white, white made black, where things are turned around. For example Republicans might have a proposal to help with the health care problem, for as they say, and we all know, the costs of health care are high and people are not getting covered. But their proposals end up accomplishing the exact opposite of what they say they will. And they know they will do that even when they propose them.
It is a matter of record that these sorts of swindles have been proposed and pushed by Republicans fully knowledgeable of what they were accomplishing. These things happened; we see they continue to happen. Taking health care again: Obviously we were left a very, very bad health care problem by Republicans. The point is that right from the beginning — you can go back to Nixon on this — they knew what they were doing. They knew how it would turn out, and there’s proof of this. We have their very words.…  
A Glimpse Ahead
The last thing to be disclosed in this series: the Why. The actual events that led these people to decide on this path toward us all, and moved them to increase and add and elaborate those initial moves to the levels of the most comprehensive totalitarian controls over a people ever attempted, let alone succeeding, as far as we know right now.
.


CHAPTER 10
EROSION OF REASON, SELF-CONFIDENCE
Reprise … The Campaign
This is the second of three parts detailing the history of the Republican Party’s incredibly disciplined, relentlessly persistent, and amazingly cohesive nearly fifty-year campaign to gain advantage and wealth for their benefactors, the corporations and the “Filthy Rich,” through totally concocted untruths.
The Matrix
It continues the exposition of this incredible phenomenon of decades-long and increasing intentional misrepresentations used by one party representing a tiny segment of the electorate to weave a fabric of falsity over the eyes of the American public. Similar to a kind of hypnotic trance, it is a widely accepted but unreal and mostly opposite mental state acting like a filter to reality, blocking out the truth and substituting a fantasy quilt woven of verbal constructions.

The “Obvious Truths”
These constructions — the “obvious truths” — are designed to please the ear, rationalize the urges, and comfort the ego, so that they will become acceptable substitutes for reason and honest perception in a population which has also been intentionally burdened, stressed, and busied through policies intended to keep them submissive and fearful.
The Perpetrators and Their Motive of Fear
This coordination of policy and mantra is a strategic effort, emanating essentially from a sliver of the population, as a terrified reaction initially to a rapid series of popular developments and mass movements with global reach, with the apparent power and possibility of overthrowing a multigenerational structure of power, wealth, privilege, and dominance.
The Fall of “Obvious Truths”
The acceptability of this substitute narrative was shaken only in recent years as it collided dramatically with the system that it had spawned, exposing its roots in the minds of a class and its utter lack of foundation in reality. The story of this lengthy and comprehensive intentional deception, its dramatic collision, and the gradual awakening of the population to the real forces behind the events of their lives and times, revealed in the shock of the disruption, continues.
The Campaign
In Part One of “Obvious Truths” — Chapters Eight and Nine, I talked about the fifty-year Republican campaign to convince the media and the American people of certain truisms that had nothing to do with the truth, in fact were almost one-hundred percent of the time the opposite of the truth. It’s pretty amazing what they were able to do.
It’s quite a story what a campaign it was, involving such things as getting people poorer and poorer, requiring them to work longer hours and so on so that they would have less time to think about things. It included other elements such as the way in which people’s minds were either stressed or made busy, and also the way they wore down the American people’s resolve to fight back against injustice
Repetition Makes It Possible to Control
The Republican untruth, no matter how contradicted by observable reality, was endlessly repeated in the exact same way, by each and every Republican. Always and everywhere when reason would be called on, instead the hypnotic truism would be brought out. Pounded home in this manner, the “obvious truth” would eventually take root, sadly, without fail, for lack of anything else countering it able to be remembered.
Democratic Efforts on Deaf Ears
The Democrats, meanwhile, were of course on the opposite side of this seamless coordination of Republican effort. Since their motives were not to enslave, their instinct was to respond, for their part, with reason and explanations that step by step delineated the causes of things. However all those words could not be remembered or take root in the minds of the befuddled masses, surrounded by such a barrage of an organized, disciplined ongoing assault of “talking points” against them.
Policy Was Added to Words to Bring into Unconscious Complicity the New Mental Territories Invaded
This mesmerism was combined with carefully crafted and timed Republican policies which succeeded beyond all expectation in eroding leisure (and importantly, pondering) time, financial power, physical strength, sleep and pleasure time.

The Result
Together they created increasing worry and stress time, overwhelmed and busy moments, and mindless paperwork time. It brought in confusional realities and mental “supports.” This precarious mental state left people defenseless against the major thrust of verbal repetition, comprised of simplistic, simple-minded, irrational, then increasingly irrational, but perfectly concocted verbal phrasings that elicited the precise proportions of fear, apprehension, uncertainty, feelings of paternal comfort and of being approved of, unimpeachable direction, comprehensive reinforcement and support, pleasing reward, and congratulation so as to manage, direct, and control the populace.
That’s all I’m going to say now, but, if you didn’t read the previous two chapters, that will give you a little jumpstart on this. Part Two picks up from the end of Part One, and continues now.
Erosion of Reason
A Herman’s Hermit of Economics
So, like McCain said, “I don’t know too much about economics.” So he kind of spilled the beans there. Some of the truth actually came out.
Smear Campaign
So how did that happen? This idea of a special interest, and it being equal for both? It’s basically a smear campaign against Democrats who were trying to do things for Americans. And Americans were being told something different. By who? Well on the TV, on the news media.
So who talks on the news media. Well, it’s the supposed journalists, the pundits, and so on. And they’ve been saying that for decades now, I’ve heard them …  “special interests” … that the Democrats have their special interests. So therefore how does anybody know the truth? And you’ve heard it, I’m sure. They say, ”Well, the Democrats and Republicans are the same; there isn’t any difference between those parties.”
How is it that working to benefit people and working to benefit corporations are the same?
Now, how did that happen? How did it happen that Democrats who were trying to do things for the average American, for Americans in general, how did it become that they were the same as the Republicans, basically who were doing things for a handful of people in one corporation or a handful of people in the other corporation … or on behalf of some industry … all at the expense of the American people? And I’ll get to that last part later.
Answer: Start with an unthinking media
There’s something really wrong when you have a media that doesn’t have the ability to reason enough to point out the irrationality of these concocted untruths. For they are broadcast endlessly, repetitively, over and over again, by one after another of Republicans, whenever they get on TV, whenever they get on the radio. Then they are repeated by their lackeys in the media, like Rush Limbaugh or whatever. I wonder how many of you out there are actually thinking: “Yeah, that’s what that is … yeah, unions, environment … those are special interests.”
Then paint everyone with the same brush
I pointed out that Democrats have taken money, much smaller amounts than Republicans, from this or that corporation. But every time there’s a scandal, every time some of this practice leaks out, that is not what we hear.
There was a huge example of this in recent times with the Abramoff scandal. Abramoff was a lobbyist funneling huge amounts of cash into Congress for favors. It was largely Republicans that were involved. Only one of the top eight recipients was a Democrat; the rest were Republicans.
Cover up the culpable
But was that detail important to the media? No, no, they couldn’t have it sound that way, like we have one particularly despicable political party. It might upset people. So Abramoff gave to both parties we were told — technically true, but deceptive, certainly not informative.
Cobble people’s ability to discriminate, think, act.
And as I discuss later, without clarity on events and in particular who’s at fault, when the waters are muddied and any talk of specific people responsible is covered in social niceties and generalities with relevant details only in the fine print, well, people are hamstrung in their ability to do anything to right any wrongs.
You’d Have to Be Abraham-Lincoln Noble
Back to the scandal, so we have one Democrat out of the eight politicians who made off with the most loot. One Democrat and seven Republicans in the top bunch. Do you see that picture? I doubt the percentage of ordinary folks cheating on taxes is that small — one out of eight.
Can we not discriminate differences? Is that too much hard work?
So can’t we make a comparison as to who a better party is, what group is more trustworthy based upon 12 % of the most corrupt being Democrats and almost 90% being Republicans? Does that not sound like the one party made out like bandits and this other guy, a Democrat, was in the room at the time?

“Free computers time!”
I mean, Jesus, if I see a truck fall over in the street and it’s got all these goodies, and they come rolling out … I don’t know, maybe it’s typewriters…. I told you I was old. Let me change that, maybe it’s computers or something. Everyone around me is taking some, taking free computers, and I’m thinking, “Hey, it’s free computers time!”
I mean, c’mon. How noble do you have to be to resist almost nine out of ten people around you? You gotta be pretty damn noble. I’m talking Abraham-Lincoln noble, right?
Dumb and Dumber
So anyway, can we have a little rational thought, or comparison?
Treating people like they’re dumber
Or do we just, as media, cavalierly toss out clichéd thoughtless truisms as if the masses don’t matter … as if they are not real and thoughtful deciders in our collective drama but merely pawns to be placated or riff-raff to be kept down. If we find something wrong with one party, why must we paint both parties with the same brush? Isn’t that what is done?
Is it any wonder then there is apathy? Any wonder there is confusion and self-sabotage among so many?
Doesn’t the media have any way of discerning any differences?  … and that’s what I was setting up at the beginning, wasn’t I?
The dummies in front of us
There’s been an erosion of rationality, and it’s not just of regular Americans. It’s also of those Americans who are in front of us on TV, soothing us with comfortable truisms, which I think many of them half believe.
And by the way who arranges for the televising of these pundits and the news shows and programming like that? Geez, isn’t it like really, really big corporations and rich people who own them … General Electric, Rupert Murdoch, and folks like that?
This new app for creating the news
The result is a situation where it is doubtful there is much reason involved in what is told. Hardly any common sense or thought into it, it is as if the scripts are cobbled together by computers from random clichés that are currently about and, of course, the always handy “obvious truths.” In the example of bribes paid to politicians, and the Abramoff one is typical, isn’t the media’s take on it slanted? No doubt they would want to derail public anger toward the masters of the troughs they feed at.
The Result
So lacking in the most minimal analysis, the insinuation that goes out is that the Democrats, well, they get a little bit of money from a corporation and much more from the American people but that little bit is going to corrupt them equally as much as the tenfold amounts that the Republicans take in.
Democrat “bosses”
This also in disregard of the fact that the far bigger “bosses,” if we can call it that, of Democrats is the ordinary folks, often, as in the issue-oriented organizations as mentioned in Chapters Eight and Nine — those “special” Americans seeking to be heard through unions and groups whose concerns are education, the environment, the elderly, public health, liberty, justice, civil rights, consumer protection, world peace, integrity of government, media accountability, the welfare of the helpless and the poor, and so on.

Democrat “special” interests
Here are some examples of what I mean about Democrat “special” interests. I list the special interest followed by the “small” group benefited by it:
  • workers — only people who work
  • education — only people who think
  • environment — only people who breathe, drink, eat … who don’t want to die
  • elderly — only people who get older
  • public health — only people who get sick
  • consumer protection — only people who buy anything
  • liberty — only people who want to decide things for themselves
  • justice — only people who would not like to spend their lives in jail for no reason and with no recourse
  • free speech and free press — only people who have anything to say to others at any time
  • civil rights — only people who are not part of any group whatsoever and also do not have a conscience
  • world peace — only people who do not want their families, themselves, to die and who don’t have a conscience
  • integrity of government — only people who would like things to go well and to avoid unnecessary misery
  • truth in the media — only people who would like to avoid living in confusion
  • media accountability — only people who want truth in the media, who would like to avoid living in confusion
  • social security — only people who want to avoid being beaten to death by poverty
  • welfare of the helpless — only people who know for sure they are never going to have bad luck and who don’t have a conscience
  • welfare of the poor — only people who know they will never, ever lack money and who don’t have a conscience
    [Hint: Consider the ones who actually fit this last category to find the ones who would be a Republican “boss,” would never favor Democrats, and would want to confuse you on all the above. This is a point that will elaborated even further as we continue.]
Media mollifying us that Republicans would actually bite the hand that feeds them
On the flip side, whereas the media insinuates that Democrats are enslaved by the relatively meager amounts of corporate money directed to them, for the Republicans, who are receiving the tenfold amounts and are virtually exclusively funded by corporations … their entire paycheck paid by the rich folks … the media implies that these folks, miraculously defying human nature, are actually going to go out there and day after day point out the corruption in America that is ever the product of this bloated elite, their sole benefactors.
Talking Points and Chanted Misinformation
“To … Catapult the Propaganda” — G.W. Bush
C’mon, c’mon, a little bit of rationality, folks! But however inconsistent with common sense these insinuations and outright assertions from the media, when you have something that’s repeated over and over again, mantram-like … man! Especially if you’re in a confused state, or a stressed state … it’s gonna be the only thing you can think of when you’re coming up with opinions.
These untruths are so firmly woven into the fabric of the Matrix — you’ll see there are others you’ll recognize — that when hearing them you’ll probably say, “Oh, yeah, that’s true.”
That’s what they’ve accomplished. And these nonsensicals are so perfectly knitted into the blanket of that matrix that they’re both mesmerizing and invisible, therefore unchallenged, even by the pundits. They are even, by rational argument, unchallenge-able.
Talking Points = “Obvious Truths”
Now, what do I mean by that … ”unchallenge-able”? Republicans at a point in my lifetime included in their coordinated daily attacks on clarity a kind of chanting in coordinated fashion. By that I mean they were repeating the same, as they call them now, talking points.
“You got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the [un’]truth to sink in” — G.W. Bush
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but remember, if you did tune in for any of Bush’s debates, when he was running for president either time. He’d be asked a question.
And he’d never give an answer to the question. It would be used like a jumping off point to say what he really wanted to say. It had the intended effect of distracting the viewers from any clear thought on the issue or subject.
It also freed up that time to be used, once viewers were led off track, for the seeding of those now assailable minds. Specifically, Bush was able to use the time allotted for answering questions instead to pound home the talking points Rich-publicans were trying to turn into some new (untrue) “obvious truths” (of course also to reinforce the old ones).
Palin: I’m not going to let the media set me up to answering your questions, I’m going to brainwash you instead!
Oh by the way we had a really good example of that, more recently, with the Republican vice-presidential candidate in 2008. I don’t know how many of you saw it, but Sarah Palin, in the vice-presidential debate, she was so …  incredible … in a way … in her brazenness. She’s up there alongside Biden who’s answering questions. And at her turn, she’s saying (paraphrasing) “I’m not going to let you media folk set me up here, so I’m going to talk to the people directly.”
And that’s how it went the whole hour, hour and a half, whatever it was. Whatever the question was, she’d totally ignore it and recite a monologue instead. Well, basically she’s repeating again and again her favorite, most lucrative mantra, her most delicious untruths.
Attacks on our reason … i.e., Republicans to public — “You’re a dumb shit, I’m not going to answer your questions!”
But what if you really wanted to know something? She wouldn’t answer you. So it was also like a one-way conversation.
Here we have politicians, who are always telling us what the truth is, but who will not answer our questions so that we can add our own thinking to the matter. We are prevented from coming to our own conclusions, so also making our own decisions.
Well that’s really an attack on our reason, isn’t it? I mean we can’t ask questions, but you can just tell us what the truth is? And that’s basically what was going on.
Chanted Misinformation
So it is sort of like a coordinated chanting. It doesn’t matter what the issue or topic is, from the gop side you just keep hearing the same phrases about it — phrases intended to replace reason.
It doesn’t either matter which Republican is talking or what TV show they are on, they are repeating the same phrases. Like Sarah Palin, they are using any question, as in a television interview, as a launch point into a rehearsed nicely knit together, truth-sounding, package of untruths. You see this one Republican saying something here, say, then there’s another Republican over there, and if you compare you notice she or he is repeating basically the same thing almost in the exact same words.
Postmodern Mesmerism
And there’s a certain power in something that’s said over and over again in the exact same words. We know this. We’ve seen that power conspicuously in recent times. We can hear Hitler, in Nazi Germany, repeating the same thing over and over again … and using this rhetorical device in targeting Jews, getting people all riled up and such. On recordings from this era we hear their … ”Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil!” There’s a certain kind of comfort in not having to think, all you have to do is chant. And you can rely on these chants because everybody’s saying them, so they have the power, of like, wow, they must be true, because, well, everybody’s saying them, everybody around you. Well that’s a sad state of affairs.
This is your brain. Now, this is your brain on deception….  
So what does this do, this omnipresent repetition of phrases in response to questions? This chanting of untruths instead of having rational discourse, when people are hearing this year after year and even decade after decade, what does it do?
Well, it adds to the smokescreen of confusion and misinformation that was effectively castrating and making Americans easily manipulated to whatever end the Republicans wanted. I mean after all you’re not getting reasoned answers, you’re just getting slogans, and that leaves you confused, especially if it’s combined with a lot of misinformation which challenges the facts on everything, when everything is turned backward and they’re lying about everything.
I’m sure you haven’t forgotten how flagrant that intentional deception was over Bush’s eight years. And isn’t that gonna make you confused? I remember a time when the facts were not so much in dispute so there wasn’t such a huge divide between the Democrats and the Republicans about what the issues were. What was debated could then be what you do about those commonly acknowledged problems.

Equal Time For Idiots
Denial of a Problem … Yeah, That’s Gonna Solve It
So this confusion over the issues has birthed an increasing polarization of opinions over the years about what the issues are. You see, we’re being told by some Republicans that there’s no global warming going on. Nooo. Wow. They are saying that issue, and for that matter virtually every environmental issue, does not exist! Certainly we’d all like to believe that, so even at their own peril adherents will be found for this obvious denial.
A convenient “truth”
And who do they have to back up that refusal to look at the problem? Well keep in mind, first, it is virtually one hundred percent of the reputable scientists studying global warming that are in agreement on the dire reality of it, regardless of the “inconvenience” of that view. Meanwhile, to oppose that position, from the Right they get, say, someone who’s got a degree from a Bible Institute and he says, “Aaaah, there’s no global warming.” And his opinion is equal to that of all those scientists, in the world?
Would you really think it’s debatable if…?
So this misinformation I’m talking about is put out there. And you don’t have the media telling you, “Well these are 100 scientists saying this, all writing statements, and studying these issues. And on the other side of this issue, we have this person who’s studying theology and he got his information from the Bible. And the Bible says there’s no global warming.” Now, if they were to put it to you that way, would you really think there was a debate? Would you really think that it’s like “Ah, maybe there is global warming, maybe there isn’t?” Naw, I don’t think you would. But that’s not the way it’s presented.

“Fair and Balanced”?
At a certain point in my life I saw how the media changed its way of presenting topics. They would say they are just providing “equal time” (or that they are “fair and balanced”?), but this was not about candidates at all.
Recipe for “accurate” reporting — start by mixing equal amounts of truth and lies…. (It’ll be fun seeing if the public can figure it out!)
They claim that their position on reporting is rooted in the equal time restrictions we have for elections. This appears to be a convenient rationalization for a more insidious intent.
What they began doing is, okay, let’s say that the Democrats basically thought the sky looked blue. But there were some Republicans that were in the camp of the yellow sky movement, the pink sky movement, whatever. And what reason do those Republicans give for saying that? Well maybe it’s because the Bible says it or something. (An aside: that might be the reason they’d give, but typically their real reason would be that an industry that is supporting them is spewing something into the atmosphere making the sky more and more yellow or pink.)
Giving stupidity a chance … the only thing about which we’re compassionate these days
Now, what do the journalists do here? Well, they figure there’s two opinions on this thing. Honest to God, that’s what happened.
And this method of reporting was actually debated when it started to happen. There were more seasoned journalists who were pointing out, “Hey, this is not giving equal time! We don’t give equal time to an idiotic argument just because it challenges, just because it is the opposite of the truth.”
Erosion of Action
Doubting the Obvious, You’re Paralyzed
But if they do follow this Recipe for the Advancement of Idiot Persons (RAIP), it’s because of what? It happens for the reason that you have journalists thinking that’s what they’re supposed to do, or maybe they are being told to do that, or maybe they’re being paid to do that, or maybe they’re getting benefits to do that, or maybe they’re being liked if they do that.…  By you know who? By people up above them. And people above them happen to want to be liked by people above them. And people above them want to be liked by people above them. And people at the top are, y’know, the filthy rich. So … confusion.
So what happens? When you’ve got this kind of smoke screen and this misinformation, it’s debilitating. I mean I felt it.
And what does it do? It makes you doubt the truth about obvious things. And if you doubt the truth about obvious things, then are you gonna take any action? No! You’re powerless, you’re gonna stand still and you’re gonna go, “What am I supposed to do?” It’s kind of like a castration.
Surrounded by Untruth, You’re Easily Swayed
Powerless against the tides
Also, you’re easily manipulated. You’re standing there. Now if you’re just standing there not knowing what to do, and somebody starts pushing you in a particular direction, you’ve got no reason not to go in that direction. Basically that’s putting it in physical terms, but if you don’t have any ideas about what the truth is, you can be told anything. Well, that’s been pretty dangerous in the past.
We’ve had many, many people killed … whether it’s in Nazi Germany or Cambodia or whatever. They were easily manipulated, and they were not fighting back. And they were confused about the truth. That’s what Hitler did.
Why wouldn’t you want a Brooklyn Bridge?
So that you’re easily manipulated to whatever end the Republicans want. And, we’ll get more into what they want, if you haven’t already figured it out. You’re also easily persuaded into firmly believing any untruth the Republicans would contrive. When at any turn they will see an advantage or benefit worth pursuing that requires a change of public opinion, then Americans would be more easily convinced.
Those Magical Republicans Turning Darkness into Light
I’ve even got an example of this from Nixon … I said it’s been going on for fifty years. Nixon was horrid even compared to the Republicans at the time. It’s only when he’s compared to Bush and the even more larcenous Republicans currently that he is seen to have any positive qualities.
The example, however, pertains to the establishment of HMOs — Health Maintenance Organizations — as a solution to the health care problem. He is the one who brought the profit motive into health care, jumping onto the HMO bandwagon after learning, through Ehrlichman, from Kaiser Permanente’s CEO, Edgar Kaiser, that “All the incentives are toward less medical care, because … the less care [we] give them, the more money [we] make … and the incentives run the right way.” Explained this way Nixon was sold on the idea; we hear him saying on the recording tape, “Not bad” and “Well, that appeals to me.”
Nice trick, Dick!
So, is that the way Nixon presented it to the American public — ”I’ve got this great way that will insure you will suffer more when you’re sick so that my filthy rich friends can wallow deeper in dough”? Hardly.
A few days later Nixon rolled out his health care “solution.” In his speech he stressed how this managed care would expand medical care and coverage and be a tremendous boon to the overall health and longevity of Americans.
Giving a helping hand … to your assailants
And Nixon’s minions in his Republican party and the media took it from there: They turned his deception into talking points and ultimately into “obvious truths.” The American public believed this truism that managed care would lower overall costs. They missed the part that they would not benefit from lowered costs, that lowered costs meant profits that would go into unseen hands, who would then go even further in denying medical care and increasing overall suffering and tragedy so that they could gather even more booty.
From today’s perspective of accelerating medical costs and such widespread denial of coverage and benefits as to require massive corrective legislation, we can see just how well Nixon’s plan to lower the cost of health care and expand coverage worked out for us.
So we see how one Republican molded the American mind to make it complicit in its own abuse, to cause average folks to participate in the very assaults on them.
I will return to this example of Nixon and what actually happened with him later on, because there’s more to be said about it.
Mind-Gaming
Repetition makes it possible to control
I just want to finish the thoughts about how this process works, this confusion, making people more manipulated, keeping them stressed and so on so that they will be more receptive. And as I was pointing out, when the Republicans need a change of public opinion or want people to believe a particular thing, the Big Lie is employed; in its repetition it makes it possible to control.
Anyone remember the wmd’s in Iraq? The supposed weapons of mass destruction? Okay. So the persistence in selling an invasion into Iraq was so effective … that persistence of repeating the same thing by all the Republicans was an unqualified success due to its masterful coordination. Republicans are known for this cohesion of action.
Having the sole aim of making money keeps a party focused
By contrast, the joke that goes around is the statement by an opponent, “I don’t belong to any organized party, I belong to the Democratic Party.” There is this feeling among those up against Republicans because of the radical individualism, the radical differences of opinion that Democrats have.
Whereas Republicans can keep it simple and be that much more persuasive. There can be no disagreement or confusion about an aim so singular, so clear — to benefit themselves and the people that are paying to get them elected. That keeps them pretty consistent and gives them a lot of solidarity.
Getting a kick out of those rascally Republicans
Good examples of this acting in lock-step abound in the last few years. How many times have we seen Republicans in perfect array going up against Obama, Pelosi, Reid, the Democrats? Those rascally conservatives were so pleased with themselves. They couldn’t be more proud when not a single one of their hundreds in the House voted for either the Democratic stimulus or budget in Obama’s first year.
“Wtf! Are you in grade school?”
They were so proud of that: they “stared down” Obama (What the fuck are they in grade school?). We had Arlen Specter, only at the end of his career become a Democrat, who voted in the Senate for the stimulus plan along with the lone two Republican senators — two women, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins from Maine.
Now that I think about it … they’re being so cohesive and so disciplined … you just got to wonder if some of them tried to take ol’ Arlen Specter out to the woodshed and that’s why he ran to the Democrats.
The Fall of “Obvious Truths”
How do they get Republicans to be so disciplined? Well, one of the things is, they’ve all got the same aim.
Whereas if you’re a Democrat, you’re going to have all kinds of concerns; the party allows you to have them. Some Dems might be more interested in health care, and some might be thinking education is the answer….
But with Republicans it’s all the same — corporations, you must help the corporations out …  “I’ll help you help your big corporation and you’ll help me help my big corporation, and we’ll all continue to get reelected and get plenty of money.”
Republicans in plain sight hidden
So that’s a good way of viewing their differences. But most folks would hardly know that, because Republicans are very effective in avoiding any talk about anything that might give them away. I mean none of the Republicans want to be showed up for what they are really in office for.
But it’s no longer crazy talk
Of course, this abject distinction between the major parties has become most pronounced over the course of the last fifty years. What I’m saying now doesn’t sound as crazy as when I learned it, when I saw it happening and first spoke of it. I saw this increasing corruption of Republicans to the point of it becoming overt and blatant in the last ten, twenty years … the fall of “obvious truths.”
Naked Republicans
So this viewpoint that Republicans are an owned and paid for subsidiary of corporate behemoths is a more frequently expressed perspective … especially since Bush’s ignoble slide and abject economic and diplomatic failure. Around the end of Bush’s “regime” Republicans had declined twenty percent in numbers, and there was talk of them becoming extinct. They had been showed to be who they are. Finally people were starting to realize that, yeah, yeah, you can be lied to … there was a decline of “obvious truths” corresponding to the light that was dawning and the naked Republicans that could be seen scurrying for the doors.
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CHAPTER 11
REALITY TRANSPLANT, THE MEDIA
The Puppet Strings (The Media)
But the Republicans had their help; believe me they had their help. Okay, so who helped them? Well, like I was saying.…  The first thing is you have politicians with the Big Lie, and they’re repeating it endlessly. And that persistence is so extremely effective and comprehensive.
Lying Down on the Thinking Job … or … Thinking Is Down on the Lying Job
The next thing is the paid pundits. You would think a pundit’s job would require more than the exposure to facts and the time allotted for that, but also some time for thoughtful consideration and analysis of those facts. Isn’t part of their job to think? Don’t they have that duty, and get that privilege, unlike a lot of people, who might be working two jobs and taking care of the kids and such and so don’t have time to ponder anything? But these are pundits who are supposed to give opinions. And you would think that their salaries includes time both to be on TV as well as to study issues and to think about them. But why is it then that they are so complicit, even cooperative?
Everybody Has One … Except Those Paid To
Backing up, being handsomely paid to do so, you’d think TV commentators and pundits would bring some thoughtful consideration and analysis to the issues. You would think they would have some understanding and therefore conclusions and therefore opinion on these issues, for isn’t that what they as pundits are required to have? They’re called pundits, they are opinion-makers, they are opinion havers.
Everybody Needs a Little Understanding.…  
Perhaps we can understand their complacency and complicity by considering their situation. They are immersed in this barrage of irrationalities that is coming out constantly from the Republicans over all kinds of airways, radio, TV, what have you.
And don’t forget a pundit’s job requires they take it in; they can’t just tune out; they have to be on top of these things. They have to be on top of what people are saying, including and perhaps especially the Republicans.
How Long Could You Maintain Your Sanity If…?
So perhaps they’re more brainwashed than others. Perhaps they are since they hear the lies more than the rest of us. I don’t know. That’s a kind way of saying that they didn’t do their job, too, though … the one about seeking out the truth behind the barrage of lies, if they still remember it.
I need also point out that they’re working for huge corporations, virtually all of them these days. Only on the internet is there the possibility of unbiased thought. And we know who owns the corporations … it ain’t me or you or the average jane. So I don’t think it accidental they’re unlikely to speak for us.
The Ladder of Status
So whose view is being rained upon us by these storm-clouds of “obvious truths”?
The Great Suck UPward
Well, there’s a tendency, like I said, going right down the line: The wishes of the upper echelons are sycophantically served by those just below them. For those a step down are repelled by the idea of losing their lives of moneyed comfort and becoming, god forbid, like the “unwashed” below. They also, like everyone, have a craving to be “liked” and approved of by someone above.
Take my word for it, this jonesing is something in each of us, even those of very high status. It is an urge we all carry forward from our earliest experiences of life. So even those sitting smugly above us are cravingly desirous of the approval of those above them. And so it goes right down the ladder of status. Those of each level sucking up pathetically to those above them while patronizing those just below.
Dandified Little Pups
And at one of those levels are the pundits and journalists. You have to remember that they, also, from a certain perspective, can be seen as the pathetic little boys and girls they are, still wanting daddy’s approval. They don’t have a clue that they are coming across as smiling tail-wagging pets eager to please in the foppish performance of their cultivated tricks.
Dancing to a Long Ago Tune
So I’m not sure, but maybe that’s it. Maybe that’s why the pundits shy from the cool light of truth. Maybe it’s part of it. Maybe they can’t see it because they are become one with it, not seeing the forest for the trees. Maybe it’s that they’re dancing to a long ago tune, accepting approving smiles as payment for their jig.
Or maybe it’s some of both …  and perhaps something more? Who knows? What matters is they were not doing their job, as we see now.
The Corporate Feast
So I saw over time this slow, steady stream of pundits and journalists adopting Republican mantra as obvious facts. And that was very sad. Like I was saying before about the special interests … Democrats are accused of having special interests of their own. It is often heard that unions are a special interest, that education is a special interest.
“Persons R Us. Corporations R Not”
And even though Democrats would say, but, you know, doesn’t everybody get the benefit from education? I never heard the pundits or the moderator say, “Well, that’s true, and, Mister Republican, what do you have to say to that? What do you mean, ‘special interest’? You’re promoting the coal companies. Are the coal companies benefiting everybody? By your trying to get them profits, trying to create tax breaks for them, is that going to benefit the people … in any way?”
When You’re Feeling Pissed On, They’d Like You Thinking It’s Really Money Coming Down
I’ll get to that later, but obviously, you can try to make a case that somehow money to corporations will benefit ordinary people, but it’s easier and more honest to show how it is actually at people’s expense. So the payoffs to the corporate hogs are hardly indirect contributions to the common weal.
Shall we review recent events and remember the gluttonous corporate profits, with their CEOs sitting down to enjoy hundred million dollar banquets? Bonuses, paychecks, jets and yachts to feast on. Even the stockholders only receive crumbs from that table.
CEO with Fifty Cookies to Tea Party Bloke with One: “That Union Guy Wants Some of Your Cookie”
And with all their girth, getting hundred-million-dollar “at-a-boys,” you see them giving money away? With all these people having problems, and having foreclosures and everything, do you see them giving money away? I mean … no.
So anyway, the pundits and journalists are seen adopting the Republican mantra as obvious facts and as unnecessary to ponder or question as if … well, probably they couldn’t help it after a while of continual, coordinated, and irritating repetition, I don’t know … so not “as if,” it is clear they rolled over.
Disposable Truth, Reality Transplants
It was as if these pundits hearing so many gop lies — tax and spend Democrats and such — had undergone a reality transplant. Somehow they disposed of their knowing that it was the Republicans who tripled, nearly quadrupled the National Debt under Reagan-Bush.
GeorgeOrwell-land — Fun New Capitalist Theme Park!
The truth that it was Bush the W who doubled the Debt mysteriously ended up in the trash.
Smoke and lies around tax and spend
We’re in such bad economic shape now because of these Republican spendthrifts. Yet there would be the pundits repeating, even after Reagan-Bush and the recession they caused, “it’s the tax-and-spend Democrats.” America’s “thinkers” would forget that Clinton had balanced the budget for the first time in decades during his terms. They would not remember that those supposed “tax and spend” Democrats left to the Republicans who stole back the presidency in 2000 a surplus, which they promptly handed over to the rich.
I recall how during the Nineties, tax and fiscal policy was so carefully managed by Clinton’s administration. It was touch-and-go maneuvering out of the fiscal ditch; few people thought they could do it. How could anyone, let alone Democrats, balance a budget, let alone reverse the huge National Debt at that time? But with Robert Reich at the wheel they did.
So what happened? Just as soon as the Republicans enter the White House, they issue a tax cut for the rich. The surplus was no more. Wow! And, still, pundits didn’t saying anything. People didn’t say anything.
Disposable Truths
How do you explain this barrage of historical malfeasance? How do you explain this lack of reaction to obvious wrongness, unfairness? It’s supposed to be a country of, by, and for the people. And most folks still think it is, even despite all the evidence of their eyes.
Maybe Americans cannot learn from, even remember, recent history because their perceptions and memories are not validated around them. If on the media their feelings are not confirmed, folks are going to doubt themselves; they’re going to be confused.

Reality Transplant, The Media
Are They So Immersed in Republican Culture?
Why commentators would be so easily forgetful and then complicit is the question. We were wondering if perhaps it is the continual bombardment of untruth they are under. In such a setting, required to stay immersed in Republican culture so much more than the rest of us, maybe they would find it nearly impossible to be as questioning and confrontational as would be required if they were to truly do their job in helping to clarify events.
Besides, they know these Republican mouthpieces socially; they play golf, have drinks with them, and more in their off hours. Of course these media types want to be seen as civil people, too. So they don’t want to say, on their TV program, “Aw, c’mon. That’s bullshit, man!” They’re not going to say that. They might think it’s bullshit, but they’re not going to tell us!
Are You Reeling in the Years?
And it’s going to keep the American people confused. If the obvious lies of the right-wing politicians and propagandists are not pointed out by the reporters who are questioning them, well then you only have the Democrats to counter these untruths.
And if these pundits are also saying that the Democrats and the Republicans are equally the same and that all politicos are corrupt and such, well, after a while, when you hear that enough, you’re not going to have really any basis for discerning the truth. You’re not going to be seeing what’s actually been going on over the years.

What They’ve Succeeded in Getting Us to Forget
In the last century, Democrats were responsible for the most influential and most popular public policy developments: they brought in Social Security, Medicare; they supported the unions and minimum wage measures that boosted the lifestyles of the American worker. So consider the right wing and media achievement in getting Americans to forget all that? Wow.
Narrative for the New History … Why That’s One Dumb Republican!
We even had one Republican, Steve Austria, who not long ago found himself in the spotlight. He was an elected Congressional representative … god only knows how that happened. He was talking on economic policy. He was changing history to fit his argument … which they do, you know.
But this guy really believed it! He was saying how it was Roosevelt who caused the Great Depression! He actually maintained it was Roosevelt who was in power when the Great Depression hit. He said the Depression was caused by tax and spend.
No, it was Hoover. Monetary policy favoring the rich caused and kept the Great Depression going; tax and spend, for example, Social Security, is what got us out of, not into, the ditch. Roosevelt was not even in office when the Great Depression hit, or before it. He was voted into the Presidency many years later and so as to fix it. All this is part of history that is practically — except for you, Steve — common knowledge. There were what were called Hoover, not Roosevelt, camps full of the poor unemployed. Wow.

Dogma for the New Religion. “Obvious Truths” from On High
How did people become so dumb all of a sudden? Anyway, I think a lot of it has to do with these things being repeated over and over again until people think they’re true. And it’s unnecessary to ponder or question them.
It seems as if the pundits felt this way after a while, to the point that when the Republican or conservative would say her or his talking point, it was almost as if that frequently heard statement was gospel. Seeing the media’s response, you would think that drivel had been carried down from Mount Sinai, engraved on a stone tablet. It didn’t have to be reasoned about; it was given down from “on high.” Over and over and over again.
Smoke and Lies Around Unions. Truth Taken Out at the Knees — Unions Are the New Rich Fat Cats
So the lie, the mantram, the notion at one time in my life, was nonexistent. At another time, quite the opposite, it was all pervasive.
At one time folks believed that unions represented working people like themselves, more than anything else. At the later time and now, the exact opposite of the truth — that union workers are the wealthy and their leaders are now the fat cats, to hear people tell it.
The truth — unions represent otherwise powerless workers
But well, of course it was the original view that was true: It is the American worker who is represented by unions, for they carry their voices.
The Republican line, the lie, that unions are entities equally as small and distinct from our society of people as are corporations, and are therefore “special,” and that what is good for unions is bad for people, for ordinary citizens, somehow given Frankensteinian life, jolted large and menacing by incessant repetition into zombified minds, blotting out the truth like a monster would the sun, and terrorizing, so they run away and fight, the very folks that now muddied truth would lift up.
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CHAPTER 12
ONLY THE GAME REMAINS
Reason and Action Eroded, The Game Is All That Remains
Note to Ordinary Folks: Ordinary Folks Are Out to Get You
Well since they believe a loving God would condemn them to endless suffering, don’t see why we can’t convince them their own biggest enemy is to be found in a mirror.” [What Republicans must think]
But the Republicans were at one point cornered by justifiable attacks about being backed by special interests, so they concocted this idea that the Democrats were too.
Everybody’s Doing It
They couldn’t deny it was true about them, so they just made it like, well, it was everybody. That way they avoided being revealed as bad people. For what they did wouldn’t make them bad. It would just make them politicians.
An added benefit for them in “democratizing” the guilt this way is that folks thinking all politicians are the same, that they’re all taking money, means they would be unlikely to vote. They would say, “Ah, they’re all crooks.” Is not that what we’re hearing? Isn’t what we’re hearing that there is no such thing as an honest politician? And keeping the masses, who are helped by Democrats, away from the polls can only help Republicans engaged in swindling them.
The Really Special Interests: What They Want Is at Our Expense
But once the term special interest meant something very specific, and it was hardly confusing. We need to go back to the time before the whole subject became so muddled and full of misinformation that even the pundits didn’t know what they were talking about anymore. Back when the term was coined, the special interests were thought of as the interests of the very small numbers of wealthy people and their financial arms, big businesses, who sought favors from government that were at odds with the welfare of the masses of less moneyed Americans.
For example there might be a group from, say, the coal industry, whose interests would be higher profits for being allowed to spew extra amounts of toxic fumes into the atmosphere. That would be the kinds of things they would want: something that benefited them at the expense of the majority of folks. Consider: If what was sought would benefit most other people as well, it would not need to be lobbied for solely by this small group, this business concern. Such a change would be advanced on behalf of the greater number of people and would succeed that way.
So a really special interest would push for something that would bring them greater profits in spite of the fact that it would hurt the majority of Americans. In this example of air pollution, it would be felt negatively by all Americans, eventually the whole planet, including people of other countries, and even the plant and animal life, in which species in existence thousands of times longer than us would be gone forever. This is why an interest might be “special.” It would be special in that its benefits would be singular, not shared.
To the contrary, the common good would be reduced for the temporary financial benefit of a relatively small group of individuals, in this case, coal barons. Keep in mind also it would only be the rich capitalist owners in these industries who would see the benefits. That is the real meaning of special.
Religion of Capitalism — The Game Is the One Truth Faith
And Then the Great Threat
In a clear-headed sense, a boon to a special interest would involve some sort of legislative help to the profits of, basically, these special rich capitalist owners; and it would be given, very often, at great cost to all those others I have been mentioning who were not in the Congressional bargaining room. So how could such a thing be justified? Well, here is how it works, beginning with another great lie, delivered as a threat.
The threat would amount to this: That unless these favors are granted, say, as in the example, if you didn’t let us put that stuff in the air, we’re gonna have to have layoffs. The threat of workers losing their jobs is always, always, the gauntlet thrown down to jimmy profits into the hands of a few.
And saving workers’ jobs is always, always thrown out to the public as the justification for granting these singular boons. So the American worker is indirectly threatened with the loss of a job and a paycheck.
The part that will rarely be spoke is the cost of this legislative largess to the general population. In our example, what will not be mentioned is that some people’s lives will actually be ended — there is always some of this, though this is the biggest unspoken — for the granting of this wish. What is recklessly ignored is that when this regulation easing, as in our example, goes into effect, it will actually kill some people; it will diminish people’s lives; it will increase diseases, cancer and emphysema for example; and overall it will result in more suffering for thousands or millions of times more people than the few that will benefit. Do you begin to see how really special a real special interest is?
But as for these costs to us ordinary, non-special, people, they will not be mentioned by either side of the bargaining. This will hardly even be a chip in the negotiations. What will be put on the table is workers’ jobs. That threat is that unless these favors are granted, well, we’re gonna have to have layoffs. And then they would say, “Well, American workers will suffer.”
And that’s the magical meaningless mantram — “American workers will suffer” — which is another one of those lies again added to create fog, to create confusion, in this case a smog of misinformation, stifling the reasoned understanding of what is actually at stake.
And Then Outright Extortion
In fact we had a conspicuous example of this, the way … let’s call it what it is … extortion was employed by the banks not many years ago. The filthy rich, in the guise of investors, pulled off one of the biggest extortions in American history and got away scot free. Even the Democrats could not see through it (still don’t).
Well, in any other instance of such a tactic, in any other instance by anybody in America doing what was done, it would have been criminally prosecuted. But not so in the case of these special rich people, represented by these bank executives.
How spectacular this oversight in singling out the guilty is rarely brought out. But truly massive is this miscarriage of justice. Consider that there are vastly more ordinary Americans than there are in the tiny group of filthy rich. So there will, of course, be far more instances in the general population of any crime you would think of. In this case we are looking at extortion, and virtually every instance of such a crime committed among the general population would attract the intense attention and the full wrath of justice there. Naturally, the harm to the victim or even victims would be constrained to the tiny number of people affected, and the limited amounts of money involved, in any particular case.
On the other hand here we had a much tinier group of people — the filthy rich and the heads of the banks that represent them. And the percentage of that group involved in such an extortion is far greater than the incidence of that crime in the greater population, another way of putting it, they represent a high crime zone for such malfeasance and a much bigger danger when their crimes go unpunished and can continue unfettered. Such small groups with higher rates of crime, when there is smaller mounds of money to protect them, are labeled as “criminal gangs,” “hoodlums,” “organized crime,” “gang-bangers” and the like. But not so when the perpetrators dress in such fine suits and stink with money.
Further, the scale on which these crimes are perpetrated is that of the entire population of the United States and expands itself to include harm to those in other nations and even among the unborn — future generations. So the magnitude of the crime is infinitely larger than could ever be pulled off by an average American. Still, the smaller scale, less harmful instances of this crime are ruthlessly sought out and punished. Whereas the immeasurably larger crime of the super wealthy is let go … and this in spite of the fact mentioned that the future threat is larger and considerably more likely if the current wrong is not addressed.
With these things known, how mind-boggling is it to notice this blatant extortion not pointed out, not labeled as such, hardly addressed?
Their Kind of “Sharing the Pain” — My Problems Will Be Your Problems, They Say
Well here we have, in this case, the banks, the preeminent fronts for the organized filthy rich, demanding extortion money, which if not received … here we go again … eventually would result in their inability to do business and would affect people. This threat is one of their ploys.
Just like the coal barons in the example above who would ask for concessions saying if they did not get them they would be forced to lay off American workers, the banks would have their way of trying to convince that they should be helped or it will affect great numbers of people. In their case, they would say it would affect their ability to do business and to serve the American people.
One way or another the idea is to obscure the reality that help to the banks will help primarily this small group, in this case, of bankers, and to make it that their problem is seen as our problem, the public’s problem. This increases the pressure on politicians to grant the favor. For it is spun that it is not the wealthy investors whose welfare is at stake but the public at large.
So there is the extortion, you see. Unlike coal barons threatening to fire workers, essentially bankers threatened to stop providing loans. They would hold them back if not paid. The degree to which this was untrue is shown by the fact that after they did get the bailout, they used it to feather their nests and to expand their bank’s market share. Chase Bank, for example, sat on the bailout cash they received, with the intention of using it to buy out other banks that would fail, which is exactly what they did with the money. Banks also gave out those high bonuses like I’ve discussed.
Meanwhile the public was not served. Money remained tight. There arose a big hue and cry over the fact that the money was covering bankers’ losses (in other words, going into their pockets) but the public was not getting the loans they needed. So in retrospect that money would have been much more wisely spent going somehow directly into the people’s hands who needed it, not by funneling it through the hands of gluttonous banking institutions.
And what about their threat of it affecting society at large if they were not placated? Well, society did pay dearly, did suffer, even though the banks were paid their extortion money, handsomely too. And since so much of that loot went to the folks who didn’t need it, overall the economy ended up worse off. Short term the problem was swept under the rug, but in borrowing from the future to help rich people today it guaranteed the problem would get a permanent installation in America’s economy. Seriously, this problem cannot be calculated or even imagined away, so Americans will suffer its results forever as far as we know.
So this is the extortion and the lie that sits in the middle of the threat that it is the American workers who will suffer if the wealthy don’t receive their payola.
For it is never the workers or, in this case, those needing loans who would suffer if the extortion is not given in to, it is the fat cats, coal barons, filthy rich, 1% who would suffer, and for that matter, not even all that much compared to the suffering inflicted on the public by their greedy practices, whether or not the extortion money or concession is provided.
The Game Is to Lie
Anyway, the game is to claim that the pain of those with wealth is really the American people’s pain, so as to make it seem a large number of people would be helped. That’s one of their lies that gets by; this is how they seek to “share the pain” … “spread their burden.” It is a banking problem, in this instance, something that has had disastrous effects on the economy and on people’s lives, but it would be better handled by society if the problem of the people involved would be addressed, not the problems — money lost, investments gone under — of the filthy rich.
The upshot is that over and over we hear these big lies of how “the American people” … one of those huge buzz words … “the American people are going to be hurt.” Or, it became, “the working people of this country,” or in the example of the coal barons, above, that a huge group of coal miners would see massive layoffs. In light of what has been said, I hope it is clear what b.s. that is.
How They Try to Convince That Their Problems Are Ours
We see the threat; we see the extortion; we see the crime and its magnitude, and we see the lie that gives life to it all. Let us look more closely at the manner of the making of this spectacular ruse.
First … some of this has been said, but watch how it unfolds … you’re starting out with a group that is a minute segment of the population as a whole. But they maintain they are identical with or equivalent to society as a whole, making it that it is not the magnitude of their money but of their numbers which raises their voice above all, which is not true of course. I was talking earlier about how they would do that in making up the tax codes. Recall, they would say, “Well, society as a whole will suffer if you don’t.… ”
So they would always package any benefit to them as being not for them, really, at all but for a great number of people. And if they could pull that off, if they could make that magical equivalency, then it was like they had a home run. They would say the working people of this country would be affected, that a huge group of coal miners would see massive layoffs, for example.
Then here is how they make that number bigger: These people, in this example the coal barons, not to be underestimated, would assert that because of their layoffs naturally there would be more of these layoffs by other coal companies. And then, they’d say, these layoffs would affect all the shopkeepers, retail merchants and so on who service the impacted regions; which in turn … gotta keep making it bigger and bigger, more and more and more people … which in turn would affect all the industries making the products that won’t be sold because of the layoffs; and of course a pullback in demand for products means fewer workers needed to make what is needed, thus an increase of unemployment in all other sectors would ensue; which unemployed workers on a grander scale would have them unable to buy from their local merchants; which equals the losses to the manufacturers in an ever more expanding array of products and industries; requiring they let people go; thus even more, ever accelerating rates of layoffs and widening unemployment; well , those laid off would not be buying the products in their local shops; which leads to … well, armageddon, the way they would have it.
So it just gets bigger and bigger; it goes around and around and around.
To Win at All Costs
But They Will Say Anything to Win
Just a hint though, this is one of those seemingly rational analyses that although appearing to make sense is not grounded in the real world; it is speculative and made up. Its roots are solely in the dark hearts and motivations of those attempting to push through their argument, to give it added weight, to basically win at any cost.
That’s a lot of what the difference is. It is that some people will wager with any amount of harm to others; they will say anything, will make up anything. They don’t have to have any facts; they don’t have to know if that’s the way it works. As McCain said, “I don’t know much about economics.” This is the guy who was popular among the corporate crowd of the country, the same group making that simplistic argument above.
What’s Truth Got to Do With It?
So basically their game involves winning at any cost to others, being willing to assert anything, with no thought that truth should even come into a bargaining situation. I mean, really, the attitude is that, what the hell does truth have to do with it? It’s like, we can make a good argument; we can convince people; we can persuade people; we can fool enough people into thinking it’s true … and that’s all that matters.
So you see they’re getting kind of cocky; they don’t even think they have to have truth … any actual facts or evidence backing up their arguments. Then you have your whole attitude of, “What the hell, why is anybody bothering to bring any truth to this?”
So they don’t bother even to come with any evidence to be laid out on the table; it becomes the most elegant spectacle in sophistry imaginable.
Unlike Monopoly These Results Are Real
What it becomes then for these special interests and their Republican representatives is something with about as much gravity as a board game. They’re seeing these matters, which are of dire importance to most of society, about the way we do when playing a game of Monopoly, in which we compete without consequences and try to win without remorse.
Though the differences should be noted. There’s nothing at stake in a game of Monopoly among friends; it is just simple play with light-hearted risks. There are no real families having to move out if one player buys up all the land and houses of another; there’s nobody even paying rent of $40 if they land on Boardwalk, nobody suffering when you’re told to pay a doctor bill … or to go to jail.
Going Directly to Jail, Not Passing Go — The Only Part That’s Really Like Monopoly, for the 99%
This point, however, keep in mind as increased perspective on the real world actions of these wealthy folk. In Monopoly you try to win. And you would consider deception. You might hide how much money or property you have … if you’re asked, for example, you might not tell the truth. And this dissembling would be considered a good ploy and harmless. Even the other players might admire such a deception.
But is this the way it is in the bargaining of the special interests through their lackey paid-for Republican representatives? No. The consequences of their cavalier play are being felt somewhere. But they cover up their unconcern through the pretense of acting on interests not of their own, but of that reliable home base of the society at large.
We’re Not Supposed To Be Monopoly … Or the Wild West
So, there’s Monopoly, then there’s the real world, where things like deception, or whatever, for the purpose of winning have real world effects on people. But we’re supposedly living in an era that is not like the old Wild West. We purportedly have a democracy with the aim of benefiting the majority of people, or at least as many people as possible. And we claim our intention is to do this without unduly punishing any particular group or having any persons inflicted with unnecessary grief. It’s supposed to be fair; government is supposed to serve people.
This Game’s Not For You
So that’s why I was saying, in the early days when there was bargaining in Congress by the special interests, they maintained a pretense of caring about people. After all, we maintain that government is supposed to be representing the American people.
Getting to Home Base, in Their Baseball Game
So moneyed interests would garner these special breaks, in the tax codes or wherever, because basically they would get to the point where they would convince enough deciders, even if it wasn’t true, that such a change, in the tax code or policy, or whatever, would benefit society at large. As I said, that is kind of like reaching home base for them. You got it then; you’re home free if you can make that link. For that is the touted purpose of our elected deciders, it is to benefit the society at large.
Now, nobody can benefit all the people all the time, so that’s as close as you can get … society at large … it’s as near to a home base as you can get.
Anyway, that was the thought involved on both sides of this whole game for a long time. And I stress — if you haven’t gotten the point already … I’ve been leading up to it — that this was the thinking on both sides of this game. It’s like a game for the Republicans, just like Monopoly for us.
And, how was it played? Well the thoughts were, if you were able to get to home base — which is equal to proving a benefit for average Americans, society at large or as a whole, or the electorate — then you score.
But Supported by “Obvious Truths” — Those Untrue Truisms — It Is Now Easier for Them to “Score”
But that thinking has changed over time. This difference in particular shows the effectiveness of the brainwashing resulting from the repetition of Republican lies over time … the enshrinement of “obvious truths.”
I noticed that over time … and this is a development folks younger than me don’t know about … that the terms formerly used in the game were no longer used. No longer were phrases like “society-at-large,” the common good, government of and by the people, the welfare of the majority, government “caring” for people, anyone’s suffering being eased, and such even brought in.
“It’ll Benefit Society-at-Large? What Are You, a Wuss?”
Words like suffering, compassion, ease, good, benefit, the people, were not uttered anymore. In fact they were felt to be counterproductive. They were considered deal breakers if let into the conversation on matters that were deemed, well … “real.”
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CHAPTER 13
THE GREAT AMERICAN ABOUT FACE
You don’t know what I’m getting at. But this is the indicator of the gradual change in our country that would be missed by those younger than myself. I only see this glaring discrepancy because of having lived many years in an America whose values were different, and who thought differently, more compassionately than today. I know of an America where even that last big word that I used, compassionately, wasn’t the dirty word that it is today … or the certain game loser, deal breaker if uttered.
What’s Love Got to Do with It?
No. See, what’s happened today is that it’s not even society at large that is supposed to benefit. Compassion is not a goal, or even a value, when negotiating. The scornful repetition of those words, “bleeding heart liberal,” has had its intended effect. No, no, it’s not the function of government to care about anybody anymore.
It may be hard for you to realize what a huge change this is from, like, Roosevelt days. The Great Depression went on for a long time, crushing hopes and aspirations, shortening lives, increasing suffering. People lived beneath this yoke for a time that must often have felt interminable. They came out of this darkness only slowly, and with great effort.
There Was a Time When Kindness Was a Noble Thing
So, yes, in those days, the easing of suffering was a value, compassion was a noble thing, not indicative of weakness like today. This is the way it was then and for most of the decades afterward, not much changing. Even Eisenhower, a Republican …  he wasn’t, y’know, at war with the common good in the Fifties; he didn’t think government was not supposed to be compassionate, that it wasn’t their job or anything, that they couldn’t give anybody a helping hand or anything like that. But starting with Reagan and slowly since then it has become that.
People Suffering, People Dying … And This Guy Thinks It’s a Card Game!
Perhaps you’ve heard it too. At the time of it, you would see it discussed all over. There was Rick Santelli on CNBC. This was at the time when it first got out that Obama might just — with millions of foreclosures, people living in tent-cities and everything — might just present as part of his overall policy to deal with the problem something to help … okay, there’s one of those words (help), a certain game-loser; so you know what’s coming next … something that might “help” people who are heading into foreclosure, people losing their homes. The idea was to renegotiate deals with the bank, to recalculate the terms of their mortgage to make it workable to both sides again.
Don’t forget the banks had before that been given huge amounts of money by the American people. So in this plan, instead of proceeding with a foreclosure the banks were asked to be willing to accept slightly less money on the loan than the original terms called for.
It was thought, what would that hurt? After all the banks aren’t going to lose. At the expense of the American people they’ve made out like bandits … in fact, they’ve been bandits … they used extortion to get that money out. With this policy they would get some money out of the loan instead of none in the case of the foreclosure; they would even still make a profit. The only thing they wouldn’t be able to do is to add that note to the pile of losses they would be claiming as part of the government bailout. An aside, that last part — making less money than if they could claim it a loss — is the key to understanding the uproar about Obama’s plan to help financially strapped home owners.
So we saw Rick Santelli, a highly visible financial commentator for CNBC, someone I saw every day for years. He stood in front of the camera on the floor of the stock exchange; CNBC broadcast it to the world. He was against Obama’s plan to “help” mortgage-holders … they should probably have used a different word than help. As he put it “In America, a card laid is a card played.” He said, “This does away with contract law!”
Yes, We’ve Made This Mistake Before
Well, yeah, yeah, they used to say those things back in Hoover’s day too, alright? And then when everybody was hurting, and there was thirty to forty percent unemployment and nobody was making any money including the rich fat cats and they were losing their shirts in investments and no longer making money in the stock market, then … then … all of a sudden, okay, then it was okay to help out people who were starving.
But Why Do We Insist on Making It Again?
Well, why did it have to get to that? And why has it gotten to that again, even to where it’s back to where it was … again … at the beginning of the Great Depression: No compassion allowed.
What is that? It’s like “Oh, these people are all deadbeats here.” Oh, yeah, all those millions of people? Doesn’t have anything to do with all that money that went to the rich people? Nothing to do with the fact that over the course of all these years we’ve seen the tax rates for the very wealthy go from eighty-some percent in the Fifties to where it is down below thirty-five percent now?
To offset those huge cuts in revenue, did we get any more prosperous in that time? Did those increasing cuts in taxes for the wealthy increasingly stimulate the economy? I repeat, did we get any more prosperous in that time? Did the tax cuts work the way the fat cats said they would?
Well, No.
Well, I was there. No, they didn’t … and we didn’t … didn’t get more prosperous. We’re a lot worse off. Y’know, when I was growing up in the Fifties and Sixties my father was poor. But only he had to work! He might bring home fifty dollars a week, with six kids. But my mother didn’t have to work. Believe me, fifty dollars in that day, it wasn’t like it was worth a thousand dollars or something today; there wasn’t that much difference.
Kumbaya. My Lord!
So there used to be this idea of benefiting society-at-large. There was this thing put out — even though it was a sham on the part of Republicans — that if you could somehow convince the Democrats that what you wanted was going to benefit the “society at large” they might come over to your side. Republicans still found it useful to promote the idea that they were representing the people.
What “Extra” Kitchen?
But no, no, no. If you say now that something is going to benefit somebody…. Like Rick Santelli said, “Well, a card laid … contract law’s all important … blah, blah, blah…. Do any of you people out there … ” He was talking to the stock exchange people; he said, “Do any of you want to pay your hard-earned money so that the guy next door can have that extra kitchen that he put in?”
Now, where the hell did that come from? I hardly think that many of the people losing their homes were out there spending all their money on “extra” kitchens. So what’s the implication? The implication is that we’ve got a bunch of losers, spendthrifts, who are throwing their money away and they don’t deserve a break.
More Likely It Was Your “Extra” Kitchen, Rick. And, Thank You Very Much but We’ve Already Paid, and Dearly, for It
Duh! Doesn’t that sound like the banks? “Extra kitchen” … Doesn’t that sound like the stock broker people, doesn’t that sound like the people who are talking about the other people this way? Wow.
Anyway, it was played over and over again. There were even people, even some pundits and governmental folks in public who were saying, “Yes, he was expressing what a lot of people are thinking.” What the hell is that? That nobody can catch a break unless you’re rich? See, that’s what happens when something is repeated over and over and over again …  self-benefiting mean-spiritedness like this can be spoken of as being, somehow, reasonable.
A Broken Person Is Preferable to a Broken Rule in This Game
And what is it that was repeated over and over and over again? Well, let me just put it this way … because I was there. You know the real issue here … when you say that it’ll benefit “society at large” or you say it’s going to help or benefit real people, or you indicate in some way that it’s gonna ease the suffering of a lot of people. The real thing insinuated has to do with that thoroughly maligned idea — “bleeding heart liberal” — and things like that.
Worse than that, these days, is when that human touch somehow gets in, it’s no more considered a game! “It’s supposed to be a game,” that’s what they’re thinking, now. And it’s like, “Aw come on you’re trying to benefit people instead of playing a game.” That’s where that contract law comes in, it’s like, “No, that’s breaking the rules.” Well we’re supposed to be running a government for the people not for the rules, aren’t we?
You Value People Over Rules? You’re No Doubt a “Hippie”
So you don’t even hear goodness coming in anymore. Or if you do hear the word compassionate it’s at most the naive utterance of someone that’s wet behind the years … some newbie or hippie … some “soft-headed” person who might have used it in a question in a town meeting, or the like.
And that’s another thing. A hippie? What the hell’s a hippie? Well this hippie can tell you. That is a definition I’ve watched change over the years. The definition in these strange days and among these current cold-hearted people is way different than originally.
In looking at this change in the meaning of hippie we bring into view another aspect of the overall argument I am making. I can tell you now that at the end you will see it all comes together neatly.
It all makes sense because of some basic human feelings, which are even present in large groups. Unfortunately those widely shared feelings are completely at odds with another set of commonly held basic human feelings that can be present and shared in another large group. That might sound complicated.
Compassion = “Hippie”
Mean-Spirited = The “Real” Reality of The Game
What I’m trying to say is, who might that hippie be? Basically, these days, if you are one of those who uses words like compassionate … you‘re a hippie!
And on the other side of this, the side that is presented to all, promulgated to everyone, and the only one considered “real,” we’ve got these mean-spirited feelings. They are at war with the idea that we have government that’s there to at all benefit, be on the side of, or even be for its citizens.
Like earlier I brought up the example of the Food and Drug Administration as something that benefits everyone, actual people, though it puts constraints on businesses. Government seen this way exists to protect American people in situations where they would otherwise be powerless. And that is based on this old-fashioned notion that it is a good thing to save people from dying or from suffering in situations where a single individual is helpless against a cultural or societal wrong.
Government could be seen this way because one preeminent value was that life was precious and good, that people dying was not good, that it was important to prevent that to the extent one could … more important than money or profits or the comfort and pleasure of people with riches. Those turn-of-the-century “hippies” valued life over arbitrary rules, people over profits, the common good over the capitalist game.
But I guess nowadays they’d say, “No, no, no … those people paid for that food!” And, you know, let the buyer beware. A dollar laid is a dollar played, after all….
“Obvious Truths” Parts One and Two Reprise
Coming up, is the third and final part in this series delineating the history of the American Republicans’ incredibly disciplined, relentlessly persistent, and amazingly cohesive … seemingly coordinated … nearly fifty-year campaign to gain advantage and wealth for their benefactor corporations and the “Filthy Rich” through totally concocted untruths.
All in the Family
We are seeing here revealed the fifty-year invisible family and community that surrounded all Americans and affected every aspect of their lives, including, and intentionally, the basic components of one’s personality, and the erosion of reason, Soul, and independent thought or action.
American Awakening
I am showing how only because of increasingly cocky and greedy acts and extreme over-reaching “in broad daylight,” before the entire world, did this malevolent surround become visible. These brutish and thievish over-reaches displayed an incredible disregard for, disrespect of, indeed, an actual literal inability of the “Filthy Rich” — the 1% — and their Republican puppets to SEE American People, who were the recipients of these attacks. Together these reveals, displayed unintentionally however blatantly and unknowingly by the Republicans and the “Filthy Rich” …  and before the entire world … disclosed to the masses of Americans some “cracks,” “stains,” or textures in the “dome” of unreality they’d existed in, which had made them blind to Reality itself, and had kept them in a near zombie-like dream reality.
“They’re so cute when they jump for their treat”
As this Awakening continued, some began remembering events, the memories of which had been “bleached” out of awareness until just then, and then with remembering they realized how they’d been trained like animals their entire lives for the uses, whatever they’d be, of the “Filthy Rich,” and been trained then to forget that.
“From here, they look just like ants”
It is clear that the “filthy rich” had an absolute certainty of their success because of their unmitigated power. What is also evident is the absolute inability of the “Filthy Rich” … which was the shocking thing they’d carelessly let out and therefore displayed to the World … absolute inability of the Republicans and the “Filthy Rich” to actually notice, let alone view or act towards, Americans as anything even living or having sentient ability, let alone as humans, people, or individuals.
All We Have to Do Is Dream
And as for the term “fellow Americans” often employed by Rich-publican politicos, if that thought even crossed your mind for a second as being anything but a device, you are not fully appreciating just how literally I mean for my words to be taken. You may very well, in fact, be deeply dreaming and have missed the crack in the dream state that had shone the light in the eyes of a sufficiently large segment of the world population as to cause them to come out of trance and begin to untie their formerly invisible bonds, so that they could try looking around, which led to the realization of the reality that had been blocked from view, and the beginnings of investigations into the real truths of their existence, and to this series of expositions, which delineates the actual, formerly invisible profile of the actual actors in American’s lives, and the processes of control, and the things in their lives that were determined for them by the “Filthies,” though ordinary folks thought they had been making decisions for themselves.
What The 1% Want to Do With Us
And the last aspects of this series delineates the real factors in your life and the outlines of the real intentions for our lives these puppet masters have had, and have even now in mind.
Processing the Populace
In Part One of “Obvious Truths,” Chapters Eight and Nine, I talked about the fifty-year Republican campaign to convince the media and the American people of certain truisms that had nothing to do with the truth, in fact were almost one-hundred percent of the time, the opposite of the truth. It is a pretty amazing story of a campaign involving such things as getting people poorer and poorer, requiring them to work longer hours and so on so that they would have less time to think about things. It included other elements such as the way in which people’s minds were either stressed or made busy, and also the way they wore down the American people’s resolve to fight back against injustice.
Part Two, Chapters Ten through Thirteen, elaborated on these parts of the campaign, which together resulted in an erosion of reason among Americans. I discussed how this erosion of reason resulted in an erosion of action as well and why this would be desirable by the societal puppet-masters. Next, I discussed the means of the manipulation — the media, the puppet strings employed by the masters.
The Great Hustle (Cool Hand Gipper)
After that I talked about the way our lives were focused away from human concerns and reduced to the level of a game, contrived by the elite and which was geared toward their ends, suited to their abilities, and in which they dominated. This game was most of the time camouflaged in positive, civic sounding phrases and terminology that made it seem that it was an endeavor for the betterment of all, but I explained how it actually was played and what the motives and ends really were.
$$$ 666 The Great Religion
Last, I bring out how even this ruse of societal welfare was ever more let go of, as the puppet-kings gained in strength and in success in converting mass minds to a belief in the dogma of the game that they controlled.
Dogma Keeping Out Pesky Saviors
They channeled people’s inclinations away from their own priorities and from human concerns to be in alignment with the overseer’s non-humanistic, alien ones. Human concerns such as life, easing of suffering and the like were seen as silly and laughable.
And Then The Awakening
As they gathered power, they became more blatant and reckless in their machinations. The game was successfully installed as the focus and preeminent value of life itself; but in this headiness of accomplishment they became complacent about their subterfuge. Reckless in their maneuvers and ever more careless in concealing it, they risked being exposed.
Nightmare Apparent
Aspects of their self-benefiting game play and the cockiness with which they pursued them are further disclosed here in Part Three, Chapters Fourteen, Fifteen, and Sixteen. We see how this creates a condition of such extreme suffering in the populace that stimulates them into awakening from the dream. The matrix is glimpsed. How the masses awaken and behold in horror the shackles and blinders upon them is described beginning here and in subsequent parts of Culture War, Class War.
Parts One and Two are intended to be read before this one, but if you haven’t done so this review will gave you a platform from which to view what follows.
“Brother, I Do Not Know Thee”
Part Three continues from the end of Part Two where I was describing how the brouhaha around Rick Santelli’s callous comment revealed a wholesale and disturbing change in American’s sensitivities toward each other and in particular a callousness about each other’s suffering. Part Three continues from here.
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CHAPTER 14
BETTER OFF THAN FIFTY YEARS AGO?
Foolin’ the People About History
Obvious “Truths”:
  • Reagan “saved” America.
  • Reagan rescued Americans from an oppressive tax burden.
  • Reagan brought down the Iron Curtain, the Soviets, Berlin Wall.
  • In America we were far better off than the Soviets were because …
    • We are the richest country in the world. In America we only get better.
    • wealthier.
    • don’t have to work as hard.
    • can take better care of our children.
So these days you have the attitude, “A dollar laid is a dollar played”; people’s suffering is irrelevant to the game.

Reagan’s Great Ruse
We have seen a lot of change over the last five decades. And many new thoughts have become truisms that are actually not true. In the real world they’re nonsensical.
The Eighties Changed Everything … The Great Swindle
Unfortunately they abound because of the cultural change initiated by Ronald Reagan that lowered the standard of living for everyone except for the rich who were the beneficiaries of that switch. It was the greatest shift of money upward, to the higher classes, in history, at that time. Bush in the last decade outdid him though.
The Republicans pulled off this transfer of wealth under the banner of capitalism. The huge tax cuts for the seriously rich, which was how this relocation of money was accomplished, began with Reagan. When it was proposed during the 1980 presidential race Bush the Elder called it “voodoo economics.” This was before he was invited on the ticket with Reagan.
Voodoo economics gradually brought the highest marginal rate of taxes down below thirty percent from the seventy percent it had been when Reagan took office. This should be compared with the ninety-some percent it was under Democratic and Republican presidents — Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennedy — in the 1940s through 1963. Reaganomics took corporate tax rates down to forty percent from the fifty percent that it had been previous to that beginning in the Forties.
Keep in mind that these were times — Forties through Sixties — when America’s economy boomed, turning the US into the wealthiest country in the world. Remember also that the last time, previous to Reagan, that marginal tax rates were below forty percent was in the Twenties, prior to the Great Depression. Not coincidentally at that same time, preceding the Depression, corporate tax rates were also at their lowest and were down in the teens. History records how well those low corporate and private marginal rates worked out. This did not stop the Reaganites from opting to repeat the previous debacle.
The Face of the Enemy, Ours
Overall, this bonanza for the rich — along with union-busting and other anti-worker practices by Reagan — had the effect of gradually lowering the standard of living for the vast majority of Americans. The result could not have been more ironic. These pro-capitalist, fervid anti-communist Republicans like Reagan and his supporters began the process that would make us mirror images of Soviet Russia in several hugely important ways.
At One Time, “Women Don’t Have to Work”; At Another, “Women Are Free to Work”
Reaganomics brought in the two-salary family. This had been one of those major propaganda points for the anti-communists in the Fifties: We were horrified finding out that behind the Iron Curtain both parents had to have jobs to support their family. It was thrown out as one of the ways we were superior in our capitalist way of life — American wives and mothers did not have to work and were able to spend their time instead raising the children.
The anti-communist Reaganites also brought in institutional child care, for now this was needed because both parents were working. Someone had to take care of the children, and they would begin that at earlier and earlier ages.
At One Time, “Strangers Take Care of Their Kids”; At Another, “Child Care Teaches Social Skills and Enhances Multicultural Awareness”
Again, extramural child care was one of those elements of Soviet life that in the Fifties was pointed out to us disdainfully and which we were grateful not to be subject to. It would be thought inhuman, if not barbaric, for children to be cared for by strangers, while the mother was working. There was something dangerous, if not lascivious, insinuated to us by propagandists, about pre-school children not being with their mothers, not receiving her protection and love during that vulnerable and needy time, but being instead “in the hands of strangers” … (god forbid!)
But after Reagan this dreaded feature of Soviet culture became the norm in American culture as well.
So Reagan’s economic policies pushed Americans into a lower standard of living — fooling them in all kinds of ways that this was not the case — which was evident in major changes in American culture which mirrored that of the Soviets such as the virtual requirement of two-salary families and along with that the necessity of child care outside the family at earlier and earlier years. But these Soviet-like changes did not also bring with them Communist benefits of job security, free child and medical care, guaranteed lifelong support, and so on.
Obvious “Truths”:
  • Americans are innovators and problem-solvers.
  • There’s nothing Americans can’t do, no problem we can’t solve, once we put our minds to it.
  • Things just keep getting better in America
  • Republicans are for small business.
So unfortunately, after Reagan instituted “voodoo economics,” with prices on health care and pharmaceuticals going through the roof along with the sudden unexpected increases of other necessities of life, you had that lowered standard of living we have now become accustomed to for the great majority of Americans. You had a population that was poorer, in relative terms, and got increasingly poorer.
Over time, over the course of my lifetime, though we might ostensibly have appeared to prosper we did not. The apparent rise in standard of living was a result of the glut of new consumer items produced in an increasingly technological and complex culture. You might be able to afford plenty of cheap trinkets and toys; but for things that pertained to your well-being and quality of life, such as health and medical care, good schools, wholesome food, higher educational opportunities, a clean environment, recreational opportunities, fuel and energy, leisure, family, and quality time, and so on, we were ever more wanting.
Peaking in the Sixties
In retrospect I can see we prospered in the Fifties and Sixties. The records show that Americans achieved a peak of affluence in the Sixties and that since then, and rapidly accelerating since the Eighties, we have been on a downward slide.
Poor Mothers Could Afford to Stay Home and Take Care of the Kids
I can see the ways we, living in the Fifties and Sixties, were as a culture fairly well off, though personally my circumstances were anything but that. My father made only fifty dollars a week for a time. But my mother never had to go to work. She actually did get a part-time job much later in life for the enjoyment of it. Can anyone today imagine that?
How Much for That House? Okay, Let Me Get My Wallet
My father never made over a hundred dollars a week until later in his life when he actually started his own small trucking outfit … that’s another story about who are the real job creators in America that I get into elsewhere. Yet he bought his home with cash he had saved up. Eight thousand dollars smack on the barrelhead in 1953. He never had to work three jobs to get by either, like some folks have to today. No mortgage on his house and he bought every car he owned — roughly once every five years — also with cash he had saved.

College Educations for Free in the Sixties and Seventies. #occupycollege Today
No loans, never in debt and yet five of his six children attended at least some college and two attained at least Master’s degrees. I was talking with my older brother about his college education, which mirrored my own, and we both remember getting by with very little or no debt afterward. We both received enough to cover all college plus living expenses most years just on scholarships and grants — mostly state and federally funded — yet we both attended private, somewhat prestigious, colleges.
I know, Millennial Generation, but don’t blame us, we’re on your side. #occupycollege.
What’s Health Insurance?
My family didn’t have any health insurance, had never even heard of it. We were not well off, but we like most people could afford to go to the doctor. And similar to others we could even normally pay hospital bills, for maternity and so on. If anything very serious developed that required more money no one ever imagined that they would be turned away at a hospital. The Mercy Hospital in my city, run by a religious order of Catholic nuns and funded by contributions, was a place one could always go regardless of one’s means. Sounds unbelievably quaint, doesn’t it? I know. I can hardly believe it was once that way myself.
Foolin’ the People About America
Obvious “Truths”
  • There is an abundance of food in America
  • There is a huge problem with obesity in America because folks actually have too much to eat.
  • People are overweight because they eat too much.

Starving for Prosperity
“Have Some More, There’s Plenty!”
And my family never starved back in the Fifties and Sixties. The dinner refrain was “Have some more, there’s plenty.” Though we were fairly poor by the standards of that time, I never, ever, ever imagined there being a lack of or limitation on food. There were big restrictions on sweet treats and goodies, but not on wholesome food. So it shocks me to see how much more concerned parents are today about how much their children will eat, as well as how precisely they mete out their gustatory offerings when entertaining.
“You’re Not Leaving This Table till You’ve Eaten All Your … Ketchup”
When not that long ago I worked in a group home for troubled boys I was shocked and distressed to see the controversies over the food portions given and the restrictions on when they could eat. This was a government-funded group home and had to abide by all kinds of minimal standards in nutrition. Still, ever since Reagan determined that ketchup qualified as a vegetable serving, I have noticed this public stinginess about food.
Where I worked, sugared-water drinks qualified as juice, and peanut butter consumption was limited to a thin layer like that of butter that’s spread on bread. Cheap sugar this and thats and nutrient-low, colon-clogging baked goods, noodle dishes, and pizza were the at-hand substitutes for wholesome, more substantial offerings. The resulting blood-sugar swings and erratic, aggressive behavior were handled with drugs and listed within their case histories.
“Please, Sir, Some More?”
There was much more like this but suffice it to say that I could hardly believe the happenings in this Oliver Twist world. My heart went out to those young boys who in this once wealthy land and still surrounded by plenty in this post-millennial, rich suburban California stood near the kitchen with plate in hand, their eyes pleading if they might “please have some more.”
This miserliness about food seems a prevalent thing throughout the culture as it is evident in school lunch programs also. Whereas at the grammar and secondary schools I attended while growing up I enjoyed complete wholesome meals on a par with and sometimes surpassing the enjoyable repasts at home and even seconds were allowed, what is considered a decent school lunch today is shocking. Corporations have taken over as suppliers. Can you believe we had a Joe the Cook in grade school who concocted home-style offerings, which were ladled out by those of our mothers, including my own, who had volunteered?
The Beloved School Cook — Pepsico
Today the school meals are akin to that in fast food restaurants and just as monotonous … pizza, chicken nuggets, spaghetti, greasy burgers, hot dogs, fries. They are not “cooked.” From what I understand, they are taken from freezers, popped in microwaves, and dealt out to pupils like one would cards. The epidemics of obesity and diabetes in our country attest to how much worse is the nutrition for young folks today.
Your Medical Payment or Your Life
What else is different now than fifty years ago? Well, there’s people who can’t pay for health care …  can’t get health care? …. Now that’s something new for me too. Can’t get health care. Wow. You mean you’re sick, you’re gonna die, but you can’t get help in the medical system? Unbelievable. That used to be unheard of.
I know. You’re thinking, “But we passed universal health care in recent years.” Remember though, we passed universal health care “coverage” … not care. Everyone has to be insured does not mean everyone gets taken care of.
At any rate, none of this “universal health care” has “trickled down” to the very needy as far as I can tell. Now, I don’t know if folks are being turned away from hospitals like they were before it was passed. Folks got refused care for lack of coverage in recent decades. And sometimes they died. (I wonder how many others died while struggling to fill out the forms to apply for health care for the needy? *sarcasm*)
Regardless, health care that is delayed, rationed out, or cut back and denied for certain conditions can be just as much a death sentence as being turned away at a hospital door. Example? After we passed “universal” coverage Governor Jane Brewer of Arizona allowed a change in policy in their state-funded health care to deny organ transplants to those folks who could not afford it otherwise. These were organ transplants needed to save their lives. These people would have received them under some other coverage, but falling through the cracks and being poor — some of them born too disabled to be able to work at a job — they were essentially told, “We can’t afford to keep you alive (we’ve got tax cuts for the rich to pay for).” So they did. They died. Republicans clamored about “death panels” in opposing health-care legislation; then promptly implemented one as soon as they could after it was passed.
Isn’t this the kind of health care the opponents of “socialized medicine” say we would get if we went to single-payer? Well, we’ve got it folks — delays, rationing, denials, complications … and stress! — without any of the benefits of “socialized medicine.” I’ve watched it take two weeks to get a prescription in Riverside County, California, when it should have taken 45 minutes or less. The folks there handling health care for people who include poor folks on Medi-Cal are so overworked and stretched thin that you need to stand in line, literally stand in line for sometimes four hours or more to get a prescription filled. Think I’m exaggerating? I’m aware of at least one elderly gentleman who collapsed while waiting and was removed on a stretcher. I felt like I was in a scene from the movie Soylent Green, wondering where they were taking this one who had fallen by the wayside.
And the answer is no. No to the other question in your mind: “Don’t they have places you can sit down?” I know of no other place where you have to stand to get your prescription, you’re REQUIRED to stand. But then this is a huge county hospital catering to the poor. It handles many poor people … and it does it poorly. The unwritten rule is, “You’re asking for health care at a discount!? Well, WE’LL MAKE YOU PAY … ONE WAY OR THE OTHER, DAMN YOU!”
Starve the “Beast”
You don’t think this attitude trickles down to the masses from policy on high? Well, you tell me what the policy makers of the 1% are thinking when they say they are going to “starve the beast” of government … continually cut back funds for government services … as a back door way of making government smaller. This is the exact wording they have used, since Reagan, for their policies of tax cuts for the rich that require massive spending cuts on services for poor and middle income folks.
But think now: Just who do they imagine is really that “beast”? And why use the word, “starve”? Yes, the “beast” of the masses, the riff-raff, is being “starved” — being made to suffer for lack of sufficient money for systems and workers so folks can be served faster. With money stretched thin for humane processing systems and employees to implement them, people are refuse … mere “beasts” … having to stand and suffer.
I wonder how this is not simply a more undetectable way of eliminating in America the handicapped, disabled, and/or mentally challenged than the way the Nazis did it to the same sort of “riff raff” when they got to power during the time of the Third Reich.
And Do You Get a Doctor?
Do you get a doctor, though? Not in this decade you don’t. When I was a child we went to the doctor’s office and paid $7 for a doctor’s visit. Even on my Dad’s $50 a week, that was affordable; and that was the least he made. When you now have doctor’s visits that cost a hundred to three hundred dollars if you pay out of pocket (or more), do you realize how much you’d have to make for it to be as affordable as it was for my Dad? Figure $700 to 2 to 3 thousand a week. Some people make that nowadays, but not the poor. Remember, my father was dirt poor, getting by on $50 a week with six kids.
House Calls in the Past; “Pretend” Doctors Today
But we got to see a real doctor. We even got a doctor who made house calls. Today? Well you get a pretend doctor who confers, along with a gaggle of other pretend doctors, with an actual physician, then gets back to you as you wait … and wait some more.
And You Wait
Recently, it took four hours for the visit and another four hours to get the prescriptions in another place at the same hospital … and the prescriptions didn’t all come through until after two weeks and a number of phone calls, as at one point they had to order a common prescription and then lost the order (had no record that it had ever been made; though on several phone calls they referred to it) and had to make it again. And this experience has been common. I’ve experienced it a number of times. I’m trying to acquire health care elsewhere, believe me.
You Get an “Assumed” Doctor
Did I get a doctor? No. Oh, they call themselves doctors. The last one was more honest and announced when he came in that he was so and so who was a “student doctor.” I didn’t hear him correctly. My mind scanned thousands of files in an instant and what it came up with I just had to ask. I said, “Did you say you are an ‘assumed doctor’”?
And You Like It
And being “processed” like a piece of meat this way, you get a different “assumed doctor” every time. There is no continuity. You don’t bother to keep track of their names, for it doesn’t matter. You start all over on every visit. The only thing they know of you is what has been electronically recorded from previous visits; nothing human or relational is carried forward. They will tell you it is because all the “assumed doctors” are equally competent and qualified, so it doesn’t matter. Of course that is a rationalization for a system so “starved” of funding the personal touch has long ago been squeezed out in favor of assembly-line efficiency.
Or You Choose to Die
So what is the upshot of all this? It is that many folks have to weigh getting health care in America — which is claimed to be “available” — against the complications and time of getting it. I don’t have a job, so I was able to persevere. What of folks who have to work full time or more? I was well enough to stand around and coherent enough to make notes and make phone calls. What of folks who are sicker than that?
The Unspoken Costs of Health Care
The upshot is that many folks are weighing THESE costs of health care when choosing whether or not to seek help. And their decision is leaving many of these folks dead. I know of a number of people who have made such a decision; many of you also do.
Some are choosing a “soylent green” escape
I know of one instance where it was even done consciously, for the person did not want to spend what might be her last time on Earth struggling with an insensitive and mean-spirited medical system, so she just opted to let her cancer take her in the serenity of her home and surrounded by loved ones. (Why am I thinking of that movie Soylent Green again? Well, maybe you remember that scene as well.)
Others are risking it
I know I myself weigh these costs in time and suffering and inconvenience whenever I feel I might need to be looked at for something. And very often … most of the time actually … I put off being looked at. I postpone doing tests that are made more time consuming and painful for poor folks (don’t get me started on that); and I often give up in pursuing the treatments and medications that I am prescribed … figuring that putting up with the suffering of the ailment is better than the suffering incurred in its cure. And I am not alone. Will it cost me my life? Perhaps.
Universal health care in America? Don’t make me laugh..
America — Best Health Care in the World
… Before Them
Now, compare all this with the way it was fifty years ago. A friend of mine on Facebook shared how her brother was treated when he had a life threatening injury. This was that long ago and she relates they were poor. She says, they flew in a specialist from Australia to perform the delicate operation. I repeat, they were poor. But then this was all before Reagan … and Nixon. I’m getting to that.
The Compassion Gap: With the Excuse of “The Game,” Small-Hearted Folks Can Now Flaunt Their Mean-Spiritedness
So what happened to our country? We were supposed to be a country that valued human life, for example, but is now valuing contract law over that.

The Word’s More Important Than The Life
So the word has become more important than the person, and better that people sleep in the gutters or lie out in the park than to lend them a hand. And god forbid when you have children, that one of them get sick, someone have an accident, or someone get killed….
Rules (Made Up to Benefit the Wealthy) Are Now More Important Than Life
Goddamn it. Y’know, here you’ve got Rick Santelli saying, well they must have put in a kitchen or else they wouldn’t have gotten foreclosed on. Where does he get that? That’s not a fact. That’s a made up thing, just to get people angry.
And that’s the game. A game that’s not founded on any facts, only played to be won, and it’s won by making the best argument to arouse the most passions, the most negative passions in people, and to find scapegoats.
Stop War? Don’t Be Silly
And this is the kind of thing that was brought up year after year over the decades to the point where it became that the things that I heard being valued growing up were laughable: compassion, if you were caring about people, or not wanting people to die.
Say, there was a war or something and there was agony over the loss of life. And all these people would gather together out of their concern. I’m sure you’ve heard about it. People anguished and horrified by other people’s deaths and sufferings … reaching out to help them, help each other, comfort each other, pray together … hope … weep.

Oh My Lord, Kumbaya
Yeah, a great big kumbaya moment! Wow. And I’m sure that’s what you heard, too. So I get it. Okay, so you shouldn’t have any feelings toward your fellow suffering brother or sister. Is it, what, silly? Uncool? Weak? Wussy? Sappy? What?
What is it you’re trying to prove to others with that?
What is it you’re hiding about yourself?
…  What would Jesus have said to that …  
It seems more than the standard of living was lowered since those days. And I’m sure they are in many ways connected…. I’ll get into that later.
Health Not-Care
Getting back to the change in the physical standard of living that Reagan wrought, though, let’s take for example the increase in health care costs. This is one of the necessities of life, and it’s been climbing out of reach, putting a burden on people, okay? …
Humbug for the Poor
As I explained in Part Two of “Obvious Truths,” Chapters Ten through Thirteen, Nixon addressed that problem in the Seventies. He was supposedly helping out the people, the poor…. Uh. But, no, he would never say that. He would never say he wanted to help the poor! Previous to him, in Johnson’s time … The Great Society and all that, yes. That was surely a time when you would hear talk like that. There was actually a War on Poverty then.
But by the time of Nixon….
So, I guess that’s when it started happening.
You couldn’t say you were actually going to help out the poor anymore. Because the truism, which I’m sure you all agree with, whether you admit it to yourself or not, is that the poor people deserve to be punished because obviously they’re lazy. Think about that; isn’t that the same stuff that, back in the day, they were saying about African Americans?…
Democratizing the Hate
So isn’t it kind of like that racism has become classism? It’s kind of like a hatred that’s not been eliminated because they’re still saying that about people of color, but it’s been expanded. It includes more people — whites and blacks … and all other kinds of colors. All the poor, they’re all now lazy, deserving what they get.
The Middle Class — The Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About
So instead what you hear today is like the “middle class”! Well, supposedly the middle class are okay people. They’re not deadbeats; they didn’t put in that kitchen they can’t afford…. Actually they’re the ones who are owning homes, so some of them actually are the ones getting those new kitchens.
Nixon Cared About Health … Healthy Profits
So Nixon’s answer to health care, to help the middle class, he started the move toward HMOs. And remember how it came about. There were actual White House tapes, an actual taped phone conversation of it. You hear Nixon talking to Ehrlichmann. And they are discussing the matter, health care. Nixon is told that Kaiser, and this is the guy who started Kaiser Permanente, one of the top HMOs. He is told that Edgar Kaiser is proposing a “for profit” system of health care.
Now here we have people who can’t afford health care and now you want to have a system that’s going to add to the costs of it. How’s that you say?
Some People Just Wanting to Get Sick Again and Again!
You say HMOs lower health care costs by reducing overhead? Maybe, but to all necessary costs that are already there, HMOs add the cost of profits to go to the owners of that health care system. Okay?
Also, Kaiser pointed out it would discourage “overuse” of medical treatment. Wow! So, here we go again.
So now we see that people who need medical treatment are just like those deadbeats, they’re like poor people, they’re overusing medical care. My god! They’re getting sick too much. And if you had a for-profit system, well, they could deny people coverage. And they could deny people medical treatment, no doubt, because they would naturally want to increase their profits.
GOP-Think. GOP, Think! GOP … Think?
So guess what? So, Nixon replied, “Well, now that I like.” This is a true story. So this is a look into how Republicans think.
Well not long afterwards, Nixon gives a speech to present his sweeping new health care proposal. What does he say?
Remember, there is this obvious disdain for certain groups of people who might be getting too much health care. On the other hand, Nixon is wanting to see that certain other groups of people will make out big time from profits that will be involved.
But his speech doesn’t go like that. Nixon is recorded giving a speech, proposing a big solution, purportedly to answer the problem of the rising health care costs that are beginning to be felt at that time. He will emphasize that his proposal would be a great benefit to the middle class.1
Make It to the Middle Base and You Score
Keep in mind as I was saying in Chapter Twelve, there was a time in which influential groups would consider they “had a home run” when they could make a case that their proposal was going to benefit the American people. But by this point, because of the culture war and mean-spiritedness being stirred up in the country by Republicans, it had become necessary to single out the middle class as the only ones receiving the benefit, because, y’know, poor people … they’re not Americans.
Foolin’ the People About America: Nixon’s Big Idea — HMOs
Thanks for the Health Care Savings, Dick
So Nixon says he is going to lower health care costs. Well, you can see how right he was about that. Just look at Michael Moore’s movie on American’s health care system if you can handle knowing how bad it got. The documentary, Sicko, lays out in brutal detail how devastating it was to inject the profit motive into health care.
“I Was a Hit-Man for the HMO”
There is one especially disturbing example of this. A former employee of a huge HMO testified before Congress. Crying and tearful she related how she was rewarded for denying an operation that would have saved a man’s life. It would have cost the HMO a half million dollars. Instead, he died; they increased their profits.
In another situation an HMO employee received bonuses upwards of $20,000 for cancelling coverage on people who were costing the insurer a lot of money. She cancelled hundreds of policies, including for those who were scheduled for life-saving procedures. In one “particularly good” year for this person, she saved her employer $6 million. I don’t know offhand how many folks died in exchange for her dutiful and lucrative actions and am not sure I want to. This is hard to look at, isn’t it?
The upshot is these HMO-persons were rewarded for taking people’s lives; and they are in no way untypical. Linda Peeno, the physician who testified before Congress, admitted as much; she admitted her action amounted to a murder, for which she should have been charged but wasn’t. She pointed out how perverse it was that instead the system rained rewards upon her. Now you show me the moral dividing line between these actions of professionals of the HMO and “professional” assassins … mafia hit men. For I don’t see it.
Pay Us Now. We’ll Think About Covering You Later
Now you might argue that saving money on costly care means there would be more help for others.
But, no. That’s not the rationale. That’s another part of it. They can deny health care on any basis. They can deny it on any basis but they went out and they found more ways to make even greater profits. If you were going to cost them a lot of money, if what you needed to live was medical treatment that they might consider too expensive, well what they would sometimes do is hire people to look into you. These people would be paid to research your background, to see if they could find something that could be used as an excuse to deny your costly procedures to you.
Michael Moore records in his documentary at least one such researcher who explains, with remorse, what he had been paid to do and how he would go about it. He, and people like him, would pore over your records to look for something, even slight, that they could hang a denial of coverage on. They would in particular look into your childhood for any care that they could say indicated the presence of a medical condition for you at that time.
When they found something, they would be able to say that you had a pre-existing condition and so they were not liable for your care now. They would claim that you lied on your application in not listing such an ongoing ailment so that they could drop you from coverage and let you die.
So people were being left to die, killed in this manner. Does this not amount to more “hits” put out on people by the HMO?
Buuuut It’s Contract Law!!
Did you, at any point in the past, pre-exist this application?
Buuut it’s contract law!  … dollar laid, dollar played, y’know. And it’s contract law that is stretched to benefit the people with the most money and who have the better lawyers and who can, y’know, twist things better in their favor. Here you have a situation, where, let’s say, somebody is dying and they’re dying of emphysema. I don’t know enough about medicine to know if that would be the kind of thing that could entail very costly care, but let’s just say it did. So this person very ill with emphysema might be informed that it had been discovered, let’s say, that they had a bronchial condition as a child … maybe to them, they were prone to get colds. But they would make the determination that your frequent colds shows a preexisting condition for you. Now you tell me how a person who is dying is going to be able to fight that.
Over Your Dead Body Getting Paid
We’ve all heard Obama’s story about his mother and what she had to go through prior to her death. She spent the last months of her life arguing with the medical insurers over the bills. She was being told they didn’t have to cover her. Are those the kind of final days you would want for a loved one of yours? How does that prospect fit your own view of your last days?

One-Stop Larceny
Getting back to Nixon, at the time of his health care proposal he said huge managed care systems, which he touted as being one-stop medical systems, were going to lower health care costs. This was so, he claimed, because cost sharing and lower overhead would rein in the price of providing medical care. He said these lower expenses would benefit the whole system.
Apparently he forgot to mention the for-profit part, which ended up funneling all those benefits, those lower expenses, into the pockets of the owners and shareholders. That is what happens when you put profit-hungry businessmen in charge of care. Gradually, America’s medical needs were primarily the purview of business, big business.
Remember, again, that the health care law that went into effect under Obama was to make sure everyone would receive coverage, not health care. It remains to be seen how effective this health care reform will be in reducing these sorts of abuses by insurers. No doubt it is better than what existed before. But it leaves intact the profit motive in American health care. So any regulation and prohibitions of abuses are likely to amount to tying down a ravenous beast with bungee cords. It is hard to believe this monster created by Nixon will not break free whenever it can and wreak much havoc before being stopped again … but again with piles of dead Americans in its wake.
You Mean You Care … And You’re Not Paid To?? (Oh, Kumbaya)
Previous to all this with big business put in charge of the life or death decisions of Americans, much of what was involved in caring for the sick had been attended to by religious and charitable organizations. These concerned social institutions might be dedicated to idealistic or religious principles, for example, which included compassion and caring for the sick as one of their values or one of their religious ideals. So, much of health care had been in the hands of charitable entities and people dedicated to the idea of service, caring for the sick, getting them well, caring for your fellow person, your fellow man or woman, and so on; naturally the type of care you received was infused with such ideals.
But with Nixon all that changed. And Nixon loved it.
The Monopoly Game Again: HMOs Drove Out Private Physicians
So then also, these businessmen with their HMOs are having near monopolies; they’re the only HMO providing health care in many areas. The only alternative is privately paid physicians. And these medical providers have costs that have gone up because of their reduced client base, their patients having been siphoned off by the HMO.
“Buy One Appendectomy, Get a Second One for a Dollar!”
So private care physicians have the same overhead, and now they’ve got less clientele. In addition to that, now with their making less money and having higher costs, they also have extra costs, of competition, advertising for the first time.
“I Need to Take Two Aspirin … I’ll Call YOU in the Morning”
But that’s only one of the many costs that occur in a situation where you have a small market, with the same number of providers. You have a scrambling with other private small medical practitioners over a smaller pile, which increases not only the competitive costs involved in having to put oneself out there to win clients from competitors and thus further increases the cost of private care, it also increased pressures and tensions on private physicians who now are required to have two jobs. They have to be medical provider and business person. They have to work longer hours because of this too.
Of course you can imagine what a boon this was for medical care in our country. Now you not only have to pay more for private care but also compared to not so long ago it is being increasingly performed by angry, stressed, tense, overworked, underslept professionals. Well what happens when you’ve got those kind of people providing you medical care on the private side?
So, on the one side — the mega-care side, you have them denying you medical care even if you’ve paid. You’ve got them denying you coverage if you have anything wrong, or if you’ve ever had anything in your life and you admit it. You either don’t get covered at all, or you may have paid premiums for years but when you get sick you don’t get treated so you die.
“Take Two Aspirin and Call Me After Tax Time”
On the other hand, you can pay the higher costs for private care out of your pocket. And these people are overworked, spending much of their time trying to drum up business and trying to take care of all the increasing paperwork of a competitive business enterprise and that of an ever increasing number of payers. So they’re making more mistakes.
And more mistakes equal what? More mistakes in medicine means more people dying, by mistake, or having the wrong procedure done, or having the wrong limb removed. The extra stress will push some physicians to “operate under the influence” of alcohol or the readily available prescription mood drugs glutting the market.
You get the idea that things may have been getting worse over the years in a lot of areas?
So with all the extra pressure on medical practitioners, we begin to hear more and more about malpractice. So, another cost is introduced. And medical malpractice insurance for physicians has ever increasing premiums. This adds even more to the price of private care.
The Kind of Care That Increases Suffering
So you can see that the suffering of the masses, in both health care systems, is going up. As for the doctors themselves, well now they’re either out of business because they made a mistake or they’re keeping up with the competition and trying to make a living. But now they have these huge malpractice insurance payments. This is a cost HMOs can easily absorb, but for private physicians, it adds even more to their costs of business, their need to increase their fees, their loss of patients, their financial stress.
So what happens? They’re forced out of their professions. Or, they’re minds are filled up with financial considerations and they are burdened with concerns … and now they’re gonna treat you!
Foolin’ the People About America: Republicans Are for Small Business?
Making It So You Need a Car to Do Anything
Well, I’ve been around long enough, I saw this before. This story of HMOs taking over from private practitioners is the same pattern we know so well of the big guys gobbling up the little ones. It’s the story of creeping corporate insertion into every aspect of your life that you keep seeing over and over again in America. And it’s changed America.
Back in the Time of Neighborhoods
There was a time when there were no supermarkets in America. I remember that time. You used to be able to walk up to the corner, walk down the street, and you’d see bakeries, drug stores. There were penny candy stores, there were meat markets…. There was a wonderful ambiance of community about it … it was a garden of delights … people smiling and everything.

Drive to the Store, Get a Loaf of Bread
And now they have these huge mega supermarkets. And I saw the way it slowly changed; it didn’t happen overnight.
Republicans — On the Side of the Mom-and-Pop Walmart
Those supermarkets — run by hourly wage workers — could beat mom-and-pop prices. Gradually over the years we don’t have meat markets, bakery stores….
And Republicans say they are for the small businesses, the backbone of the middle class. Well, this is an example of just what a lie that is because, no, supermarkets are not small businesses. It’s all those meat markets, bakery stores and all that — those are the small businesses, they are the mom and pop, those are the average Americans trying to be self employed. Self-employment is not huge corporations.
.


CHAPTER 15
MONEY MADNESS
Obvious “Truths”:
  • Tax the wealthy, you’re taxing me.
  • Democrats tax and spend, they bust the budget, balloon the National Debt.
  • Republicans are fiscally responsible, fiscally conservative; they balance budgets and are careful about the National Debt.
  • Rich people create the jobs.
  • The wealthy are society’s creative sector.
  • That “class warfare” stuff “just doesn’t work.”
Obvious “Truth” — Tax the Wealthy, You’re Taxing Me
But when you hear the same things again and again, even black-and-white facts can be put up for dispute. For example, during the 2008 presidential race and prior to Obama’s first budget, the Democrats’ tax proposal was explained as a tax cut for the middle class and no increase on any Americans making less than two hundred thousand a year. This was a black-and-white fact, part of the public record, not in dispute. But how did the Republicans explain it?
That’s a Small Business?
I certainly heard it, over and over again; I bet you did too. Republicans were saying the tax proposal was going to affect small businesses. So we have small businesses that are making over two hundred thousand a year in pure profit? And that’s a small business? That’s a small business? I think if you’re making, after all your deductions and everything and you’re still making two hundred grand, I think that you’re not a small business. I think you can afford extra taxes. But that’s what we are told.
We’re All Rich. Somehow I Missed That Memo
So apparently we got a group of people who think that people are really rich. The assumption is that most Americans are rolling in dough so that any tax increase on the wealthy is an attack on all Americans.
So, you can’t tax that sliver of the very, very wealthy a little bit more so that the majority of Americans might benefit. Benefiting the majority of Americans used to be how you got to “home base.” But now, it’s like, “No, you can’t tax Americans; we are Taxed Enough Already!”
Obvious “Truth”: The Democrats’ Want to Take Your Money
The way this “obvious truth” is phrased now … no way to get around it, it’s a flat out lie … goes, “You can’t tax the very rich, cause that’s … ” and they’ll just say it right out, “that’s gonna affect all Americans, that’s taxing everybody.”
Well how did it get to that conclusion when actually it’s going to lower taxes? And they were saying it over and over again: “No, we don’t even need to know what the plan is; we just know he’s a Democrat and that he’s going to raise taxes,” they would say of Obama … or for that matter of any Democrat at any time in recent history.
Now, how did that become true? Well because … he’s a Democrat and well haven’t you ever heard the term tax and spend Democrats? And there we go again.
Obvious “Truth” — Fiscally Responsible Republicans
Pointing Some Fingers Already
Alright, let’s go back. Pre-Roosevelt turn of the century initiatives so common and familiar now, such as the Food and Drug Administration, are the kinds of things Democrats brought in that added to government. Yet, Republicans spout misinformation; they get people angry about “evils” of such “big government.”
Misplaced Credit
The Democrats are the ones who brought in the FDA, worker’s rights, workman’s compensation. They’re the ones who put in Medicare. They’re the ones who put in Social Security.
Misplaced Blame
And we remember the Republicans are the ones who created the Great Depression, created poverty for everybody at that time. They’re the ones who did it again with Bush, who tripled and nearly quadrupled the National Debt under the twelve years of Reagan-Bush, then more than doubled it under George W. That’s a lot of goddamn money.

That’s a Lot of Money
And then the Republicans were giving away seven hundred billion dollars to rich people who afterward were giddy in their ingratitude. This giveaway, keep in mind, came at the end of Bush’s terms. And you would hear CEOs bragging how they’re not going to spend any of that on people; they’re not going to use any of that money to loaning any of it out, which was supposed to be the purpose.
And even afterward, all Congressmen were agreeing that’s a huge amount of money, which at the time was the biggest amount of money being spent at one time, in such a short period of time on anything. And how could we forget that they just took the money and did whatever they wanted with it? They paid off debts to other rich friends; they went overseas and invested in other countries.
Chase Didn’t Use the Money for What It Was Intended
Goldman Sachs used sixteen billion of what it received to pay off an outstanding debt to a German bank. The head of Chase bank is known to have said he wasn’t going to use the money to increase credit. In fact, he said he was going to keep that money and he was basically going to feather his nest with it and keep Chase solvent so that when other banks went under he could buy them up with it. That’s the money of the taxpayers he’s playing “Monopoly” with, mind you.
Obvious “Truth” — Tax and Spend Democrats
But stacked up against the facts we have this idea of tax and spend Democrats. It’s been repeated, going back many decades. It basically goes back to Roosevelt who ended the Depression and benefited virtually all Americans. And now that’s somehow a bad thing, brought up to get you mad about the tax and spend Democrat. And they’ve got all Americans convinced that if you vote for a Democrat, they’re going to take your money, they’re going to tax it, and they’re going to spend it on somebody else. Well, that has nothing to do with the truth.
Social Security, Medicare, and Surpluses, Oh My!
It has nothing to do with the truth. Certainly Roosevelt benefited all Americans with Social Security and so on; certainly Medicare, brought in under Lyndon Johnson benefited the vast majority of Americans. All these things the Democrats did. And Clinton raised taxes on the very rich a few percentage points and balanced the budget. Clinton created jobs and prosperity, balanced the budget, reduced the National Debt, and created a surplus that could have gone into creating a better America for all Americans. But, no, that was considered bad, because they said it hurt all Americans when the extremely wealthy had to give a little more in taxes.
The Fun Times Anticipating the Surplus
Never mind the facts, never mind that fact that we had a surplus that we were talking gleefully about how we were going to spend it. If you can remember, we were discussing investing in better roads and infrastructure that would have benefited even the businesses.
Stealing Home
But no, it wasn’t about the truth anymore, it was about how you made it to home base, how you got money for yourself. And it didn’t matter anymore if you just skipped all the bases, and you started at home and went to home … if you just took the money. I mean, after a while the Republicans could just do that; tax breaks for the wealthy just because they were wealthy. Because, after a while, after all those years of repeating it: They could get away with, If you tax the wealthy you’re taxing all Americans. Wow.

Obvious “Truths”:
  • Rich people create the jobs.
  • The wealthy are society’s creative sector.
  • Poor folks don’t create jobs, don’t invest their money.
  • That “class warfare” stuff “just doesn’t work.”
Obvious “Truth” — Rich People Create the Jobs
Obvious “Truth” — The Wealthy Are Society’s Creative Sector
Yes, I have actually heard it said this way; a good chance you have too. Here’s how it works: Raising taxes on the wealthiest is gonna hurt all Americans because by taxing that sliver of the upper two percent of Americans, you are inhibiting the creative sector’s ability to create jobs. Rich folks are society’s wealth creators. The wealthy are the creative people in our country.
They’re Creative All Right
They’re the creative people, huh? Yeah, they’re creative in stealing from us. They’re creative in fattening their wallets at our expense. They’re creative in getting people elected who are liars and things like that.
That’s not the kind of creativity I’d like to have. As far as creating jobs. Who creates jobs?
Excess Wealth Given to the Rich Created High Art Prices, Not High Employment
Here’s the facts. You know all that money that was given to the rich people? All those tax incentives given to the rich people by Reagan? Well, It didn’t create jobs so much as it created a lot of excess wealth that went into, well, people were buying yachts, and they were investing in art objects that were being bid through the roof.
The wealthy were scrambling; they had so much money they were fighting over art objects. And the art objects — paintings and so on, famous paintings — were making headlines in being sold for so much. During the Eighties under Reagan it was common to hear of 39 million dollars for such and such … 58 million, 82 million. Of the 25 most expensive paintings ever sold, only two did not come at a time when tax cuts of either Reagan or one of the Bushes were in effect. And because what? Because the rich had so much extra freakin money. Now you tell me how many jobs money tied up in art objects created?
Real Truth — The Rich Will Squander or Sit on Extra Money
I mean it isn’t rocket science. It’s very simple … simple psychology. This has to do with facts: You give money to rich people who don’t need it, they’re the ones who are going to squander it; they’re the ones who are going to spend it frivolously, or not going to spend it just let it sit. They’re not going to benefit society with it; they’re not going to multiply it; they’re not going to invest.
In economics this is called diminishing marginal returns. Simply put, it means that food eaten by a hungry person will reap greater reward than the food consumed later when the person is satiated. The same amount of money funneled into projects, or people, will have a greater percentage return when sorely needed than when not; a dollar will go far toward feeding a hungry African child and will be as nothing for a rich American. You simply cannot throw money at folks or ventures and expect to get as much, let alone more, return or reward later when the person is less “hungry” or the project less “starved” for funds.
Obvious “Truth”: Non-Wealthy Folks Don’t Create Jobs, Don’t Invest Their Money
Real Truth: People With Less Money Will Sweat Over and Multiply Money, What They Can
Whereas, you give a fraction of that money to a poor person, a tiny amount of that to a poor or moderate income person and what will they do? You have any idea how somebody who is poor will make a little bit of money go a long long way?
I saw my father do it. He is the same person making the meager fifty dollars a week at one point. And he wasn’t making much more, but he eventually got a truck driving contract with the U.S. postal service. He was able to own several trucks and to hire several workers.
So, why did he do that? Because he didn’t have a lot of money. And by taking those chances and becoming a businessperson, taking that little bit of money he had, he created jobs for a few other people. Because he was motivated, he was desperate. And for him it was all about a chance to raise himself out of being poor. He spent his life scanning for and working for such opportunities till he finally came across one.
Billionaires Are Not Highly Motivated to Become Millionaires
So you have people who would take any money coming their way to better their situation in life, the real American way. They would really love to be millionaires; they would risk their very lives for that. They would work their asses off. But those folks aren’t the people who are already billionaires.

But Nobody Will Point This Out!
So you’ve got these inanities thrown out there. They’re being said over and over again … “Rich people create the jobs; they’re society’s creative sector.” These obvious untruths are not being countered by journalists and pundits. There is really no one pointing out that anything is a lie, there’s nobody saying out loud that these self-serving pronouncements are untrue, or that what is being said is vastly different from the facts.
Obvious “Truths”:
  • Things you hear a lot are true.
  • Simple “truths” are real truths.
  • Democrats think they’re better than everybody; they’re snobs, elitists….
  • Unlike Republicans who are regular people just like me, folks I could sit and have a beer with … who’d understand me.
Confused People Take Comfort in Stupidity
When ALL You Hear Are Lies, You Begin to Think It Has to Be the Truth
So, what happens? What is the result of these things being heard long enough, with nobody countering them or anything? It’s natural, if you hear something said enough, you don’t question it.
I myself am that way. I was told that we should go into Iraq because there were weapons of mass destruction. I didn’t hear anybody saying anything differently. So I believed it. Well, that turned out to be a lie.
It’s just natural that if you don’t hear anything to counter something, you’re going to believe that the only thing being said is the truth. And that certainly has increased over time … through the years.
Democrats Feel Like They’re Talking to a Wall; They’re Talking to the Weary
It is not that these lies weren’t countered; they were … by progressives and Democrats … and the few, the brave of commentators. In later years, MSNBC emerged and could be counted on for straight talk. Comedy Central became the “real news” for the young educated for being willing to throw light, albeit hiding behind the built-in denial mechanism of a comic façade, on the inanities of the Wingnuts and Well-Funded.
But that has not been the reality touching the lives of ordinary Americans. What I observed is that the great majority of pundits weren’t any help in clarifying things for people. Journalists would say, “Okay, Mister Democrat, what do you have to say about that?” And The Democrat would respond with a reasoned argument, laying out all these things that made perfect sense if you’re familiar with the issue.
And pundits wouldn’t delve into their argument, tease out its elements so as to enlighten.
And keep in mind that now more than ever people need that. We have people listening to this who are working two jobs, tired, overworked, worried about their health care, stressed. They’re not going to be able to follow an argument very well. In fact they’re going to forget what all those words meant and how they all fit together.
So after a while a lot of these folks are going to say … I’m sure you’ve heard them, they’re Republicans and the ones who vote for Republicans … they would say, “Aw geez , that’s just a bunch of words, it don’t mean anything.”
But what the hell does that mean?

Confused People Retreat Into the Stupid
Well, it means that all these words can’t be remembered, they can’t take root in their mind after the lies they’re always hearing from the other side. They are surrounded by the organized disciplined ongoing assault against them by the Republicans. They are filled up with talking points benefiting the wealthy comprised of simplistic simple-minded irrational mantra … irrational, repetitive, simple slogans.
So, the result is that Democrats don’t end up having a lot of power; they don’t get elected. I saw it happen in presidential election after presidential election. I saw Reagan saying simplistic things, getting all the people pissed off about poor people and about the Soviets.
From the other side, I heard his appealing to the worst in people countered by reason, by sensible explanations and realistic proposals of a Dukakis, a Carter, and a Mondale. And then at the end it was … it didn’t mean a damn thing. Because people just felt more comfortable around somebody who kept things simple, who said simple words, and seemed angry like they were.
Not that Reagan said anything indicating any of his policies were going to benefit average folks. No, actually he screwed them, but they still liked him! Because Reagan, like other Republicans, are able to confuse people into thinking that any screwing up, of any time, must have been done by Democrats. They will tell you your poverty now is caused by Democratic policies of the past which actually got us out of depressions, recessions, and created surpluses. They will tell you your lousy health care now is caused by money going to the Medicare that you like. They will tell you that the financial squeeze you feel is because of the “penny” going to a poor person not the bundles of loot they are taking.

And Burdened People Become Confused People — That’s Their Plan
So, the electorate is swimming in these simple irrational things that have been made to sound reasonable. And they are unable to see through them because they have been kept in this situation of increasing pressure to produce, produce, produce; of less leisure time and no time to think; of worries, medical care, all kinds of things you have to put out money for. They can hardly see through the swindle since they are distracted by the threat to their lives from insurance companies — those folks who may or may not pay you if you need it though you have faithfully paid them.
We’ll Insure You, Up to the Time You Need It
It’s gotten to the point where you have insurance but you dare not ever make a claim. You live with the risk of unexpected loss to your home at any time that you cannot cover, because if you make a claim you may not get it next time. You risk losing home insurance and threatening your home. What the hell kind of insurance is that? You are insured, but they can deny you? They can deny your claim; or as it happens all the time, you have one or two claims, and you no longer have an insurance company.
So if your payments are not making them a profit, if you are one of those few who are costing them more to be a member or to be covered by that insurance company, if you’re costing them more, they’re not going to take it out of the profits of all those who are costing them less, so, you’re eliminated. So why do we even have insurance companies? Most people have insurance just in the hope that they’ll be covered.

Rational Thought Replaced With Slogans … How Can Anyone Know the Truth?
How Can Folks Unite Against Injustices Hidden From Them
Who has the time to think clearly or reason confronted by all this other uncertainty, this other insanity? So we have all these pressures and then there’s these slogans put out and people are not able to follow rational arguments.
How this expresses itself came out in a discussion I vividly remember on Facebook. One rational type was trying to reason with a supporter of Mitt Romney, who was convinced everyone knew all the “true facts,” EVERYONE knew about all the “failed” and horrible things Obama had done … as she’d learned from Glenn Beck among others. My earnest and reasonable friend finally threw in the towel saying, “It’s like talking to a random thought generator. What do you think about foreign policy? Cheese.”
That is the result of factoids, “obvious truths,” replacing reason in burdened and confused minds. So how could these people possibly, without being able to see clearly, how could folks like this ever be united against the REAL injustices against them … which they don’t even realize are happening … their minds filled with the fake stuff?
How Can Folks Protect Themselves From “Wizards” Hiding “Behind the Curtain”?
People do not even know who the perpetrators are, for the pundits won’t tell them. Folks cannot figure it out for themselves; and the pundits absolutely refuse to point out who’s responsible for the things that add misery to their lives.
Media types say they cannot do that because they say it has to do with, something about equal time. But that was supposed to be for elections. And, as I pointed out earlier, equal time turned into something where, no matter what lie is put out there or would be put out, no matter what truth is put out there, the media will find somebody, they could find anybody, who would be willing to say a lie and sound reasonable for the purpose of confusing things.
With all this, how can anybody know what the truth is?
Obvious “Truth”:
  • A rising (economic) tide lifts all boats .
Real Truth — The Rich Get Richer at Our Expense
Life Has Gotten Harder — Real Truth
So we have this increasing deterioration of our prosperity, of our standard of living, of our joy of life. Life becomes more and more of a struggle, and who benefits? Well we see who benefits. We now have a new super-rich class which is above even the very rich. It’s called the filthy rich, as I’ve pointed out.
Real Truth — Our Suffering Has Paid for Even Greater Obscenities by the Wealthy.
And to create this super-rich class where did that money come from? Well, it’s come at the cost of average people like us. And I can tell you this because I lived through it all. I’m old enough to have seen the changes. I was born in 1950. I’ve been there to know, things are much harder than they used to be.
And our rights and our freedoms have changed. Because of their successes in the Culture War/Class War, because of Reagan and Bush, the Patriot Act, the neo-con takeover, and everything, our rights to speak out and to live without harassment have been diluted. Out of all the civilized countries in the world we have the greatest percentage of our people in jails. So what does that say?
Humiliation … Increasing Humiliation of Working People
We have these huge corporations taking over, and it’s humiliating to people. I mean in times past we had the small retailer. Perhaps this person had a small coin shop, bakery, drugstore and pharmacy, shoe shop, maybe a corner grocery store. Now, there aren’t any small stores like that. And where does that person end up making a living?
Well, he worked in retail so maybe he even ends up working for the same department store that pushed him out of business. So what does that do to your self-esteem?
There’s example after example of people like that in recent years; it’s something that went into high gear under Bush. There are ever more people who are losing their jobs, well-paying jobs, because they’re being sent overseas; and they are sometimes actually forced to train the people who are taking their jobs.
I can say I feel fortunate to have lived many years in an America quite different from what most people in America being younger than me have been growing up with.
Obvious “Truths”:
  • Yuppies are former hippies.
  • “Flower children” abandoned their idealism and became greedy careerists focused on money.
  • Former young radicals saw the error of their ways and became more conservative politically as they got older.
  • The “Me” Generation is the Sixties Generation
  • Sixties youth turned from free love and a sexual revolution to conservative sexual values and evangelical religion.
  • “My Generation” gave up their idealism as everyone does with greater age and maturity.
  • The Woodstock generation turned from pot and visionary thinking to booze, cocaine, and disco dancing a decade later
  • The “free love” generation settled down and focused on family and jobs, centered around monogamy.
  • “My Generation” is currently filling up the suburbs and feverishly maximizing their portfolios, at any and all cost.
Real Truth — All the Above Are Lies … Propaganda to Further the Motives of the 1%, the Filthy Rich
I can say I feel fortunate to have lived many years in an America quite different from what most people in America being younger than me have been growing up with.
I watched in the early Eighties the lies about a “Me Generation” coming out. Republicans brought that out to beat people down with. The idea was planted that people who wanted anything for themselves were selfish, for after all only the wealthy should ever benefit.
And it’s funny too, how they were able to use their own spawn to make this case. You could look around and see a new cadre of young folks — Gen X Yuppies — who had bought into the WWII values, who had been deluded by the untruths the 1% of that WWII generation had been using against the masses. The rich elite had succeeded in convincing those younger of mind that the wealthy folks interests where actually their own.
The 1% of the WWII Generation’s response to Sixties activism on campus, as I showed earlier, led to their taking over the universities in the early Seventies and turning them away from the humanities and social sciences and into career mills; I was there and observed it firsthand. The success of this is what created the Yuppies in the Eighties — young upwardly mobile professionals — who were the first batch of Generation X — who are those born 1961 to 1981, who therefore left high school beginning in 1978.1
So these Gen X Yuppies were coming onto the scene in the early Eighties, when the first of them were leaving the universities. The turnaround in education, away from free thinking and towards conservative careerist values, was in full swing by the time they reached college in 1978 on. And its effect on them was patent when they began coming of age. They were what the WWII Generation wanted: money-oriented and compliant … greed had been made “good” again. Standouts of this generation today are Sarah Palin (born 1964), Eric Cantor (born 1963), Rand Paul (born 1963), and Paul Ryan (born 1970).
So then the WWII Generation, fully in charge of society, could point to these yuppie spawn as examples of the obscenity of greed, thus deflecting attention away from their own, WWII Generation, me-spiritedness. To further their ends, they also claimed the origins of this unseemly greed lie in the failed, unrealistic values of the Sixties generation and their idealism.
This was one of their most amazing feats. They were able to take their values of greed and conformity, sow them in another generation, point to those values and criticize them, blame them on the hippies, all the while hiding their own espousal of those values. They perpetrated, denied, criticized, scapegoated, distracted, and obfuscated all together! They thoroughly convinced Americans that the Me Generation and Yuppies were those who formerly were flower children.
Whereas this actual Me Generation, these Yuppies, were predominantly a bunch of reactionary young people who said to hell with this idealistic stuff, and of helping out, and kumbaya, and all that stuff. They said, we’re for money, to hell with anyone else. And somehow the WWII-Generation-owned media, assisted by a Fifties Generation now in their prime, convinced folks that these careerists out only for themselves were the one-time visionaries. Of course they only pulled this off because they owned or controlled all the major organs of expression in America — the newspapers, magazines, TV, radio, education, book publishing. I’ve delineated how they did this in one of the earliest all-out assaults, after their initial setbacks in the Sixties, of the Culture War/Class War they have been waging on the 99% since that time.
The media flooded American minds with the idea that the Me Generation was My Generation (I’m “talkin’ bout my generation” here) in the Eighties. They had prepared the ground for that lie, as there had been constant slander of my generation in the press since the beginnings of our activism in the Sixties, exactly like they are putting out against the Millennials and those in the Occupy movement today. Beginning in the Seventies, owning the publishing and media industries, they concocted the lie that there was a conservative backlash going on. (See “Chapter Two: Matrix Aroused—the Sixties.”)
This supposed conservative backlash was merely a continuation of Nixon’s laughable claim that he was supported by a “Silent Majority,” which he had used since the beginnings of his term in 1969 and which was obviously false, as demonstrations grew in size and support swung away from him throughout this period; and eventually he was forced to resign. But Republicans always claim there are a majority of real folks out there — “real Americans” as Palin and her kind say today — who support them but are doing it secretly. (btw, lol!)
Anyway, by the Eighties the powers-that-be were able to place this idea of a selfish “Me Generation” of Sixties youth, which they had been saying for a while, as being the ones on the campus at the time or recently out, the Yuppies. It fit their narrative. But it was a lie, and virtually all my generation knew it and thought it laughable. We stopped laughing after a while as over the years, it became clearer they had done such a good job of preparing the ground and repeating the lie that it stuck in the minds of those other than my generation — the Fifties Generation ahead of us and Gen X behind us — and the right wing, who of course saw this as red meat to further their causes. The media controlled by the 1% said the Sixties generation had gone from idealism to just wanting money, thereby discrediting their opponents, us who were consistently representing the 99%. At the same time they gave credibility to their claim of the superior veracity of their own values of greed, materialism, ruthless pragmatism, ego above all, and even me-spiritedness. Also, it validated, even glorified their personal traits of conformity, hard-headedness, cynicism, compliance, and even mean-spiritedness .
The Lies About Jerry Rubin
They could only give one example, Jerry Rubin; and even about him they lied and slandered. First off, neither Jerry Rubin, or Abbie Hoffman for that matter, were Boomers or Sixties Generation members. They were Fifties Generation, born in 1938 and 1936 respectively. Boomers were born in the post-WWII baby boom from 1946 through 1960. So that is enough to discredit what they said about “my generation.” But taking it as an attack aimed at the counterculture, let’s examine it:
They said Jerry Rubin was engaged in trying to make money. And they never mentioned what he was trying to make money on …  but God forbid anyone but them should try to make money anyway. You see, what the 1% do is drive people into lowered standards of living and poverty where they experience desperation for money at times. Then they can point to that grasping to survive as proof that their values of money above all else are legitimate and that it is not possible for humans to have any other values higher than that. They create the conditions that they can use to support and validate themselves … how convenient.
But telling the whole truth would never allow them to do that. They didn’t mention about Jerry Rubin that he was engaged in selling health supplements; he was trying to help people out with their health. He was involved in multilevel marketing, so he was into facilitating people in becoming self-supporting by having them own small businesses. He was an early investor in Apple Corporation, helping to foster the cybernetic revolution that progressives depend on today and which has strengthened our movement incredibly with Facebook and Twitter aiding us in overthrowing dictators in the Mideast and joining us in support of the Occupy Wall Street and Wisconsin union movements.
He traveled with Abbie Hoffman in doing “Yippie versus Yuppie” debates, that is true. Since it did not fit the narrative of their discrediting their opponents in the Sixties generation, the owned media never understood or at least never mentioned that in using those terms for their “debates” Hoffman and Rubin were continuing their tradition of fucking with their opponents’ minds by flaunting the terms that had been used against them. Critics don’t get, and opponents conveniently overlook, the heavily ironic and playful way my generation, and Yippies in particular, present themselves. “Yippie versus Yuppie” is supposed to make you think; it is a hook; and it is funny to those of us in the know. Believe me, I have the same problem with people sometimes misunderstanding my intent for the opposite of what I believe because of the amusingly ironic titles I sometimes give my writings.
But Rubin’s position in this “debate” — which was actually a discussion of different ways the Sixties values might succeed, not be overturned — was that the POOR COULD BE HELPED by promoting programs to create wealth in their communities. I quote:
Rubin’s argument in the debates was that activism was hard work and that the abuse of drugs, sex, and private property had made the counter-culture “a scary society in itself.” He maintained that “wealth creation is the real American revolution. What we need is an infusion of capital into the depressed areas of our country.”
Someone who knew him well, Stew Albert, said this of Jerry in eulogizing him.
Jerry was always a rebel, but then he was always a rebel within the rebellion. He was always sort of rebelling against the norms of the rebellion.
And,
Jerry changed costumes, and he changed rhetoric, but he never changed his heart.
Does that sound like someone promoting the interests of the 1%? Or like someone just out for himself, as Yuppies really are? Remember that at the time, militant, even violent revolution had been in the air for a while — with the Weather Underground, the Black Panthers, and the Symbionese Liberation Army and such. So “Yippie Versus Yuppie” was a leftist debate about tactics. Today it would be considered a discussion of liberal versus progressive views … hardly conservative, Yuppie, or Republican views. And Jerry Rubin’s putting on a suit made him about as conservative as it made Bob Dylan a conservative when he picked up an electric guitar at the Newport Festival of 1965. Dylan got booed for what was only considered unusual alongside some very high, and strict, expectations about purism in music having nothing to do with political ideology or musical quality but simply technology. Rubin’s wearing a suit was the same kind of thing at the time he did it … and it had nothing to do with ideology but simply tactics — that is to say, revolutionary technology.
Also, at the same time as Rubin was doing all this and supposedly a Yuppie, he was running a legal and civil rights office in an artsy/alternative part of L.A., Echo Park, where he also lived. When he died he was on his way to dinner in the company of Fred Branfman of the Making a Difference project, whose purpose was to bring money into poor communities by helping inner-city youth learn how to start their own businesses. Does that sound like a Wall Street careerist? Does that sound like he turned over his ideals and bowed to the god of money? So, lies, lies, lies. And these lies become instituted and they’re not challenged after a while, after you hear them for decade after decade after decade….
You have to be older to know that it wasn’t always the way they tell you it is. It helps to have lived in different times and places and to have seen things with your own eyes to be able to see through these inane “obvious truths” that people take as absolute truths. It helps to have had experience with the things they are talking about to know what are actual facts and what are complete fabrications.
Setting the Record Straight on Boomers
Boomer — Generation X Culture War
A friend who supports the Occupy movement, and who happens to be a Gen Xer, recently shared this with me,
As a Gen Xer, I have to say we were outnumbered as a Generation with half the numbers of the boomers and the previous traditional generations.
… the boomers cut taxes on the wealthy and wages for the middle class to create the world’s largest debt, our dependence on dirty foreign oil grew as our manufacturing base got shipped overseas.
You Boomers call Gen X a slacker generation while doing all that?
It is the boomers who are the dead beat generation now.
If this person were correct, then why have the Boomers voted consistently Democratic?2
The Gen X/Yuppie — Fifties Generation alliance was responsible for getting Reagan, Bush I, and Bush II elected. Boomers voted against Republicans, especially these; it’s all in the public record. Reagan, Bush I, and Bush II are the ones who did the tax cuts. Whereas Clinton — a Boomer and a Democrat — raised taxes on the 1% and balanced a budget for the first time.
Indeed, all Democratic candidates and Presidents going back to Roosevelt at least, with the one small exception of Kennedy, favored and fought for raising taxes on the 1%, not cutting them, so as to relieve the burden on the 99%. The right likes to use Kennedy as an example of a Democrat seeing the wisdom of cutting taxes to improve the economy, but Kennedy’s proposed tax cut for the 1% was when the marginal rate was in the 91% range, not at 35% as today, and the country was prosperous. (See “The Myth of JFK as a Supply Side Tax Cutter,” online.) Also it was not instituted until Johnson began his term … which was incidentally when the huge deficits began. So Kennedy’s tax cut had nothing at all to do with the prosperity we enjoyed during his term, indeed its institution marked the beginning of increasing deficits.
Even today, it is Democrats — supported heavily by Boomers — who are opposed to tax cuts and favor reining in the greed of the 1%. This includes Obama, who incidentally is a Gen X-Boomer cusper, born 1961. Note that he has surrounded himself with Boomers — Biden, Clinton, et al. And they are engaged in that same Democratic struggle of decades past of trying to get the 1% to pay their fair share in taxes. Meanwhile Republicans supported by that Fifties Generation (the Koch Brothers, John McCain, Dick Cheney, Mitch McConnell, et al) — Gen X/Yuppie (Palin, Cantor, Ryan, Rand Paul) alliance oppose Boomer-Democratic tax and other progressive initiatives at every turn.
So to accuse Boomers, who voted predominantly for these Democrats and their policies, of cutting taxes is grossly misinformed or a lie. And for a Gen Xer to do this blaming is either ignorant, a denial, or delusional … but is in any case a product of that misinformation I’ve been talking about.
For to address that Gen Xer’s charges of Boomer’s causing the dependence on dirty foreign oil, the Sixties Generation started the environmental movement. I know a little about this; as I explained previously, I was one of those who helped bring nuclear plant construction to a halt in America, which we did in Springfield, Oregon, in the early Eighties. We, Boomers … I was born in 1950 … supported Democrats who fought for environmental legislation, alternative energies, and reduced dependence on dirty energies against Republicans, supported by the Fifties-Gen X alliance, who watered down those policies and legislated a rape of our natural resources and our environment to benefit big business, Big Oil, Big Nuke, Big Coal, and the 1%.
As for the accusation that Boomers sent our manufacturing base overseas and caused a lowering of middle class wages, how can that possibly be true alongside the more than obvious knowledge that Democrats are the ones who consistently push for and favor raising the minimum wage and are the union supporters? Can this OWS person not be aware of the parallel Wisconsin union movement which has Democrats and union folks up against Republicans and Gen X/Fifties Gen Koch-supporters? Or is he somehow unaware of the fact that Boomers have consistently voted in greater numbers for Democrats than Republicans over all these decades?2
Well, this shows the amount of success the WWII Generation and Fifties Generation enjoyed in shifting the blame for their policies and their theft of the national wealth. And, by the way, it was the WWII Generation that had the greatest retirement wealth per person and who instituted Social Security and other benefit programs for themselves … making themselves the wealthiest as well as the “Greatest Generation.” Probably with the tax cuts, the current Fifties Generation who in their retirement years are raping the wealth of the country to fatten themselves, are bettering them. Whereas the Sixties Generation, scapegoated again, is facing cuts in Social Security, Medicare, and other benefits at the exact time as they need it and are facing or entering retirement — being beaten down, harassed, and scapegoated by the Gen X–Fifties Generation alliance again.
You think this is ancient information and is irrelevant to what is happening today? Remember that the comment I quoted above from my Gen X friend and fellow Occupier was made not long ago. He has his sights set on my generation as the perpetrators of the problems; these ideas have caused a split between Gen X and Boomer Progressives. I can tell you that his comment is not atypical from others I hear from Gen X in their attitudes toward Boomers.
Similarly, to some extent the Millennials believe Boomers are at fault also — this is what they have been taught. They are simply misinformed and so are not so committed to the lies as the Gen Xers. The Millennials are open to the fact they have been deceived. After all their Boomer parents are models of the fact that these “facts” are actually lies. The Millennials have been made to believe, simply, that their own parents and those of their friends are somehow just different from those “bad Boomers” out there who are really the selfish and tax-cutter ones.
Occupy Generations
Lies and toxic misinformation are not healthy, at all, for a movement that is predominantly an alliance of Millennials and Boomers, with some Gen Xers (notably, few Fifties Generation folks). After all, how do you think a progressive Boomer feels, after fighting his entire life with his generational cohort for the changes that we are still fighting for with the OWS and Wisconsin union movements, and after hearing his entire life the made up lies, the slander, the scapegoating about himself, his generation, and his beliefs? How do you think she feels seeing those same lies being pulled out again and thrown against OWS supporters, for example, continuing therefore to throw salt into old wounds? And finally how do you think she feels to hear from her friends and allies in the movement that she has been the problem all this time, not the solution? It is disheartening, to say the least.
In this antagonism against Boomers, the other side — the WWII-Fifties Gen alliance, supportive of the 1% and their Tea Party sycophants — have won again.3
For these WWII–Fifties-Gen lies have thrown discord into progressive ranks. And they have thrown off the aim of our movements as to who the perpetrators are, giving the 1% a convenient fog of confusion behind which they can continue unfettered their actions against us.
Finally a most visible example of the right-wing/Republican Fifties Generation – Gen X alliance was shown in the 2008 presidential election with a Fifties Gen, McCain, matched with a Gen X — Palin, born in 1964, coming smack in the middle of the Yuppies (1961 through 1970). This is the generational alliance and the generational values we should be targeting, not Boomers, and Progressives would do better to know that.
The “Truth Dividend” of Having Been Around
So, in understanding what might be the truth and what are obviously lies, it helps to be older, for you can know that it wasn’t always the way they tell you it is or has to be. It helps to have lived in different times and places and to have seen things with your own eyes to be able to see through these inane “obvious truths” that people take as absolute truths. It helps to have had experience with the things they are talking about to know what are actual facts and what are complete fabrications.
And with that seeing comes the knowledge that over the course of the last fifty years America descended into a deep slumber of untruth from which it could not awaken … regardless of all the righteous efforts of many true-seeing progressive activists who did their best to sound alarms.
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CHAPTER 16
THE FALL OF “OBVIOUS TRUTHS”
So, we have these Big Lies, these “obvious truths,” which are actually not true, and they are all-pervasive. It makes it virtually impossible to know what is actually going on.
Lies Are Being Called for What They Are
Until just recently. For now the truth’s being told again. And the Republicans are on the run. They are being found out to be the liars they are. That term, lie, for the first time in my lifetime is being used for what they do. They are being discovered to be who they are and what they have been doing all those years is being told. All the things they like to do — the undermining of unions and the collective bargaining system, the ever increasing giveaways to the rich — are being brought into the light.
The Republican Lie About JFK Being a Supply-Sider
America was prosperous in the Sixties under Kennedy. And Republicans like to refer to his cutting taxes on the wealthy as support for their policies. They like to point to the good economy then as being the sort of thing that happens with their voodoo economics of shoveling money into wealthy hands, and they dare to imply that he would be in agreement with them.
But Rich-publicans have been extracting far more from America than the modest gain they had under Kennedy. What they’re not telling you is JFK reduced taxes to percentages in the seventies. The tax cut was actually not implemented until Johnson took office, so the prosperity we remember from the JFK’s America happened with the marginal rate above ninety percent. They’re not pointing out that America boomed under Eisenhower, a Republican, when the marginal rate was also in the nineties. They’re avoiding the fact that their hero, Reagan, took JFK’s levels to the twenties and caused a recession.
The Republican Lie That Cutting Taxes Creates Prosperity
So Republicans are comparing a small reduction enacted during prosperous times — the early Sixties — with huge cuts in times that are precarious — currently. And they’re failing to point out how lower taxes in the Twenties before the Depression, in the Eighties before Reagan-Bush’s recession, and in the last decade under Bush all devastated the economy.
Despite these dire consequences, they would opt for the highest bracket of taxes to be in the low thirties even now when they can hardly be afforded, and they pushed Obama into continuing their tax cut at the end of 2010 and are blaming him for the economy not responding since then. So Republicans firmly maintain that Matrix of misinformation and switching the blame whose purposes are to confuse the other-than-wealthy and thus keep them helpless.
It Is Now Clear That Their Intentions Are No Less Than Those of the Nobles of Old
They would keep us helpless for lack of a clearer understanding, as well as to keep us disintegrated and disunited. No big union movements, no big antiwar movements, no big environmental movements, and no movements for the poor and economic justice.
The misinformation overlay has become so pervasive, the masses have lost the solidarity that they had enjoyed only a decade or so earlier when issues were clearer. Even Clinton’s America was a time when the truth was easier to make out through the concerted Republican campaign to enrich themselves and to keep the average American confused, poorer, poorer and poorer, helpless, and thus dumber and more controllable, easier to manipulate, and overworked because of crazy-making ways of doing things.
“This Is Not the Way America Is Supposed to Be!” — OWS Protester
What does their consistent, daily, pervasive and unrelenting repetition and lies accomplish? What does all that amount to? Their intentions are no less than those nobles of old, to keep people in servitude and serfdom, essentially to bring people into compliance with their totalitarian will.
But I refuse to believe that is the only possible fate for workers and the masses of people. I still actually believe in those things we were all taught about America in our schools. I still think of what we are supposed to be.
We’ve Brought Down Soviet Oppression … Only to Raise It Ourselves
But in our propaganda and lies we have become the Soviets in many ways. But we’ve done it in a much slicker way that has got everybody confused.
Well, I did say this was about the rise and fall of the “obvious truths.” And I talked at length about those lies and those obvious “truths” that were never challenged. I hope I made my case.

But What Did It Take for Such Truth to Be Revealed?
It is our good fortune for these lies to become clearer in recent years and for the perpetrators to become more visible. But what did it take for those guys to be seen for what they are? It took a lot of suffering by the American people. For eight long years, it took a lot of being abused by the powerful. The Republicans got so cocky, they took so much money, they were so uncaring of the suffering, of the dying of Americans. They were so obviously not caring … not even putting up a pretense of being for the American people, who they were supposed to be representing and who they were claiming to be on the side of. They were obviously the wealthiest of us and those fighting for those interests of the filthy rich, but they were insinuating that they were all people, that what suited them was a benefit to us all.
Arrogance Comes Before the Fall
But you see you can get so cocky that you can lose your discipline, and then you start to say things that people can see through. And then you have a war and people are dying. And then you finally have a collapse, an economic collapse that was based upon taking away regulations that people and good thinking Democrats and so on had instituted to protect people from having their life savings taken away from them … regulations that were also put into effect to level the playing field with the rich and anybody else playing the stock market.
We had such regulations, but then they go and take them away. We see that lapdog for the filthies, Alan Greenspan, saying we have come into some bright new era when corporations no longer need restraints for they are (magically) now self-regulating.

Their Thievery Blatant, Cocky
And we saw what happened. The rich people … they went crazy, they went amok. Even at the end they took 700 billion dollars out of the American Treasury, and got away scot free.
I was making the point earlier how that was extortion on such a grand scale. I brought to mind how extortion happens a lot more among the hundreds of millions of Americans but when they do it on a tiny scale they go to jail, but when this elite does it on a large scale, well they just talk about it as if it is history. And It’s like, “That’s too bad. We gave all that money to them, and they didn’t do what they said they were going to do. Hmmm. Too bad. I mean there’s nothing we can do.”
The American Awakening — The 99% Rising … in a Plundered Land
However people did start to see through the “obvious truths,” finally, through all of the haze of omnipresent untruth. Maybe it was because so many people were out of work they had some time to think. I don’t know.
99% Rising
And then Obama came along. He spoke plainly. He spoke like one of us, because he was one of us. Like Bill Clinton, who incidentally was also raised by a single mother, Obama had a middle class background and humble origins. His mother was said to be a “hippie” of sorts; she was certainly internationalist in her perspective, not jingoistic. She died owing medical bills and, sadly, struggling with insurance companies. Obama’s origins have nothing in common with those of, say, a Romney … or a Bush. He wasn’t cradled in wealth, and his family had no ties with Nazis like the Bushes.
You couldn’t say he wasn’t one of us; you couldn’t make Obama out to be an elitist. Of course, they tried to; they got so cocky there is nothing the filthy rich and their Republican lackeys would not speak to see if they could get away with it. Obama was called “elitist” when he was campaigning, and when in office they changed that to “socialist” and un-American. He had the same kind of pejoratives thrown at him that the 1% have always drummed up against any of us radicals, “hippies,” activists, or any of us coming up from the 99%. He forgo taking up some lucrative position in the corporacracy after his university years and instead worked as a community organizer. I personally can appreciate that having done something similar at one point in my own life.
But, no, he spoke like us. He made sense. He used rational arguments like his Democratic predecessors, but unlike them he could weave that logic with examples and words from our lives. Perhaps Clinton is the only president in recent memory who could really do that as well. And, being black, he obviously didn’t look like our usual American overlords.
Certainly, they tried to make him into some rich person. It is amazing how the filthy rich will paint their opponents with the brush that belongs to them. One of the big lies they always put out there is that “The Democrats are the ones who are rich.” And they’d say, “Well the Kennedys were…. ” Seriously, they do this. It is so typical.
Nowadays they bring up the name, George Soros. They find the one billionaire on our side. They don’t tell you that he’s got one-tenth the wealth of the Koch Brothers who fund the Republicans and the extreme right. With Soros’s billions dwarfed and insect-like up against the mountains of gold behind Republicans, they still make him out to be some kind of source of all evil. Unbelievable.
But that’s what the Republicans and the right-wing-nuts do. They will find one example of anything. Always just one example will they be able to come up with, but they will use that to make their crazy “truth.”
Indeed, Obama chose a running mate, Joe Biden, who also had unprivileged beginnings. Biden grew up in the unassuming city of Scranton, in the center of the one-time Pennsylvania coal region, only ten miles from where I happened to have been raised. Biden was one of the least moneyed if not the actual poorest of any of those in the Senate. He ran his first campaign on a shoestring budget and was still taking the train to Washington at the time of his nomination to the vice-presidency. You can argue the policies of these Democrats all you want, but what you cannot do is include them in the ranks of the 1%.
The Awakening
So by the time of the 2008 election and after a sorry eight years of the reign of a foolish Bush, these “obvious truths” — such as that you give money to the rich and it’s gonna create prosperity — well, they were falling. They came out into the light and began being seen to be the lies that they are. Not all of them, of course. But some, at great cost to Americans during eight years and more of suffering, were swept like cobwebs from the minds of an awakening populace in America. The American Awakening began.
It began in reaction to an idiot “king” and on the shoulders of a new committed generation of Millennials. It swept the first African American ever into the office of the presidency of the United States. Within three years, and knowing Obama’s election was not enough to throw off the vines of tyranny that had grown over America during a full fifty years of “obvious truths,” it caught the headwind of an Arab Spring and sailed into a Wisconsin union movement and an American Autumn. Between the Occupy Wall Street and Wisconsin uprisings, America saw the largest outpouring of revolutionary fervor since the Sixties. Not only did the throngs of demonstrators mirror, perhaps surpass, the numbers that rose up in the Sixties, but the movement this time was world-wide; the cause was the same, world-wide. A Global Awakening had begun.

Their Legacy Remaining
But the fields upon which we arose had been burned and the earth in which we tried to take root had been salted. There had been that massive transfer of wealth upward to the coffers of the already stinking-with-it since the Eighties, over the course of some thirty years. It had been going on full throttle since the Republican coup that put Bush into power in 2000, which, without blinking an eye, swallowed up the Budget Surplus that had tediously been built over the eight years of the Democrat, Clinton.
All that money squandered on those not needing it could have paid for child care for everybody in America, could have given everybody in America solar power, so that we would be completely energy independent in that way, not worried about terrorism or anything.
No, but all that money was just thrown at the rich people. These very important life and death issues were tossed aside as irrelevant in the game. The players were intent on winning, and it was like nobody really cared anymore if anybody got hurt.
After all, once you start telling people that poor people deserve to be poor and that they are responsible for any misfortune that others heap on them … even if they get hurt or killed … you’ve opened the door for much more. It’s like “Oh, yeah, it’s the gangs they’re in. They’re having gang wars, they can’t control themselves, they’re not like the rest of us, they’re always starting trouble, they can’t be helped, they’ll always be poor, the poor we always have with us….”
And once you start saying things like that, you’re speaking their talk. You’re helping to keep the rich in control of you, because you’re helping them to cover up what they do. You’ve allowed them to distract you from their nefarious game to focus on some other group. You begin having it out for some easy scapegoat and begin to think of those unfortunates as not part of the “real” Americans.
The wealthy have you thinking after a while about this scapegoated group the way they think of you. They do not think you are as human, as deserving of a nice life as them. They want you thinking that there is some group … Jews, blacks, hispanics, gays … who are responsible for your problems and are not as deserving, are not as American as you. So they create all kinds of lies so you’ve got someone to blame that is not them, that is not the actual perpetrators of these things.
The Fall of “Obvious Truths”
So this is what is meant by the rise and fall of “obvious truths.” We see through their bombardment of inanities and lies, yet they have desperately stepped up their assault … as frightened actors can be expected to do. This proves we are winning. Yet they increase their control of the dialogue in America with a virtual media monopoly, spinning their line, their narrative almost exclusively and leaving the internet the only unconquered land outside their broadcast hegemony.
And I can only hope that the truth will continue to come out, that it will really come out and continue to awaken people to their own interests instead of them working against themselves and each other. Obama is an intelligent person; he’s doing as good job as might be expected in the plundered land that’s been left him. And I hope it’s not forgotten what he is doing.
I saw what a good job Clinton did, and I saw how that was covered up, how we were distracted to seeing only a scandal. Oh, yeah, so he had sex. Our leader had sex, how horrible. So all of the people who died because of the Bushes and Reagan, all the suffering caused by rubbing people’s faces in the dirt of poverty are not to be mentioned. But Clinton had sex with some woman; that’s a cause for outrage. Wow.
But you hear that enough and you don’t have any real perspective any more. You cannot weigh the gravity of one wrong against the other, or in this case a supposed wrong against real ones.
But Americans are starting to know again what is really important. Pushing against the media tides, they are connecting outside of the public limelight. They are using the internet to exchange views. They are learning and taking action, gathering by the hundreds of thousands in rallies for change and to speak out against what is continuing to be imposed on them to benefit the well off. They are doing this despite being ignored by the media, the media continuing its policy of trying to make some realities to go away while blowing up the ridiculous and the insignificant into matters of great and pressing portent.
So in spite of it all I think Americans have started to get back their solidarity. I think they are starting to get back their ability to reason.
I just hope that we’re going to get back some jobs too … and some money  … and be able someday to enjoy some of that prosperity I remember from the past.
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END
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NOTES
Chapter 1
1. Eisenhower gave this address only days before his term was to end. The significance of Eisenhower waiting till he was about to leave office to inform the American public just hit me.
We wonder what has happened to Obama since he took the presidency. We wonder what happened to his ideals, his promises, the change he promised. We suspect something dire, for we have watched as Democratic president after Democratic president — especially Clinton, to some extent Carter — changed once they assumed the presidency. Jesse Ventura, speaking on CNN, two years into Obama taking office, said Obama was no doubt “taken out to the woodshed.” It just never occurred to me till now that those unseen hands might have even been there in 1961, too.
Certainly the forces of the military-industrial complex were not as powerful, bloated with power, as they are now. Still, why else would Eisenhower not speak about this until his term was just about over? If he did not feel pressured (threatened?) previously, why would he not have been making this an important issue? It was, after all, the summary statement, culminating viewpoint, of his eight years.
Also, if he did feel pressured (threatened?) not to reveal or let some truth be known during his time in office, yet felt it was something of extreme, even dire, importance, might he not have “risked” it at the very end, for the good of the country? … feeling that his conscience needed to relieved as he saw the end of his influence and of his own life in sight (he had gone through several health crises during his term that could have been terminal), that his legacy would be completely blackened, his influence totally skewed in a way he did not wish if he did not “spill the beans” at some point … the end being his last chance to come clean and the only time, perhaps, that he could feel he could go through with it without immediate personal, or some other kind we do not know of, repercussions? There may be much more to this warning to the nation than had previously been brought out.
2. These are the lyrics to “Sad” by Nirvana:
Rare song by Nirvana titled “Sad” or “Verse Chorus Verse.” Also known as “Sappy.”
Lyrics:
And if you kill yourself,
You will make him happy
And if you save yourself
Then you will make him happy
He’ll keep you in a jar
And you’ll think you’re happy
He’ll give you breathing holes
Then you’ll think you’re happy
He’ll cover you with grass
And you’ll think you’re happy
Now
You’re really in a laundry room,
You’re really in a laundry room
Conclusion came to you, oh….
And if you cut yourself
You will think you’re happy
He’ll keep you in a jar
Then you’ll make him happy
He’ll give you breathing holes
Then you’ll think you’re happy
He’ll cover you with grass
Then you’ll think you’re happy
Now
You’re really in a laundry room,
You’re really in a laundry room
The clues that came to you, oh….. (x2)
And if you fool yourself
You will make him happy
He’ll keep you in a jar
And you’ll think you’re happy
He’ll give you breathing holes
Then you will seem happy
You’ll wallow in your shit
Then you’ll think you’re happy
Now
You’re really in a laundry room (x3)
Conclusion came to you, oh …  …
3. While history records only 100,000 to 200,000 attended Moratorium Day in Washington, D.C., Wikipedia reports the preceding month’s nationwide actions and the D.C. event as follows, giving a figure of 500,000 for the November event. I explain in the text why I think even that figure is way low.
The Moratorium to End the War in Vietnam was a massive demonstration and teach-in against the United States involvement in the Vietnam War that took place cross the United States on October 15, 1969, followed a month later by a large Moratorium March on Washington.
The Moratorium developed from Jerome Grossman‘s April 20 1969 call for a general strike if the war had not concluded by October. David Hawk and Brown, who had previously worked on the unsuccessful 1968 presidential campaign of Eugene McCarthy, changed the concept to a less radical moratorium and began to organize the event as the Vietnam Moratorium Committee with David Mixner, Marge Sklenkar, John Gage, and others.
As with previous large anti-war demonstrations, including the National Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam‘s April 15, 1967 march on the United Nations and their 1967 March on the Pentagon, the event was a clear success, with millions participating throughout the world. Boston was the site of the largest turnout; about 100,000 attended a speech by anti-war Senator George McGovern. Future U.S. President Bill Clinton, then a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, organized and participated in the demonstration in England; this later became an issue in his Presidential campaign
The first nationwide Moratorium was followed a month later, on November 15, 1969, by a second massive Moratorium march on Washington, D.C. which attracted over 500,000 demonstrators against the war, including many performers and activists on stage at a rally across from the White House. Most demonstrators were peaceful; however, late in the day conflict broke out at DuPont Circle, and the police sprayed the crowd with tear gas. Over 40,000 people gathered to parade silently down Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House, where protestors walked single file all evening, each calling out the name of a dead soldier as he or she reached the sidewalk directly in front of the White House. The people of Washington, D.C. generously opened schools, seminaries, and other places of shelter to the thousands of students and others who converged for this purpose. A daytime march before the White House was lined by uniformed police officers, some flashing peace symbols on the inside of their jackets in a show of support for the crowd.
President Richard Nixon said about the march, “Now, I understand that there has been, and continues to be, opposition to the war in Vietnam on the campuses and also in the nation. As far as this kind of activity is concerned, we expect it, however under no circumstances will I be affected whatever by it.”
Activists at some universities continued to hold monthly “Moratoria” on the 15th of each month.
At the Moratorium, a quarter of a million demonstrators were led by Pete Seeger in singing John Lennon’s new song “Give Peace A Chance.”
Chapter 3
1. Just as in the alcohol use, the “positive thinking” fad continues — both of them much abated, of course, since the World-War-Two Generation gradually leaves the scene. Astonishingly, even in this postmodern era, one World-War-Two Generation author admonishes, in huge text no less, in the title on the cover of his popular book: “You Cannot Afford the Luxury of a Negative Thought”! (yipes!)
2. An extremely funny exposition of the effects of marijuana is contained in an album put out during the Sixties titled “Child’s Garden of Grass.” While its intent is completely comedic — at which it succeeds masterfully — it succeeds more than anything else I know of in depicting, to both the experienced and inexperienced, the most common effects of this trickster drug. “Child’s Garden of Grass” was available on youtube last I checked and could be accessed by doing a search there.
3. “Like people trapped in spacesuits trying to communicate with each other through the layers of barriers between them” is the way one person described it, as reported in a book by Kenneth Keniston titled The Uncommitted, which delved into the psychology of one segment of Sixties Youth.

Chapter 4
1. The events and statistics about this concerted effort are detailed in my book-in-progress titled The Once and Current Generation: Regression, Mysticism, and “My Generation” … stay tuned.
2. I’m not the only one to notice this generation or to see the swings in political leanings from one generation to the next. Kevin Drum, writing in The Political Animal, on January 5th, 2008 called this generation the Eisenhower generation. He places this generation in time between the World War II generation and the “counterculture generation of the sixties.”
He describes the swings from Democrat to Republican — World War II gen, Democrat; Eisenhower gen, Republican; Sixties gen, Democrat; Generation X, Republicans; Gen Y (boomer Echo generation, Millennial Generation), Democrats. And he predicts a political coming of age for Gen Y in that year’s presidential election (2008), which is exactly what happened.
What I add to that is the obvious point that these swings coincide with the parents of each generation of these youth. Specifically, counterculture generation members voted Democratic like their World War II generation parents; Gen X youth went Republican like their Eisenhower generation parents; Gen Y or Echo youth are solidly Democratic in line with their Sixties generation parents.
He describes it as follows:
Democrats and the Youth Vote
Voters, like other consumers, develop brand loyalties early in life. The World War II generation, which came of age during the New Deal and cast its first votes for FDR and Harry Truman, sustained a Democratic majority for decades. Likewise, the Eisenhower generation that entered the workforce during the fifties remains Republican to this day; the counterculture generation of the sixties and seventies remains a Democratic stronghold; and “Gen X,” the famously angst-ridden generation that started voting in the eighties, continues to vote Republican as it enters middle age.
And today’s youth? Surprise! It turns out it’s a Democratic powerhouse. In the early nineties young voters began shifting rapidly toward the Democratic Party and haven’t looked back since, even after a Republican won the White House in 2000. Today, twenty-somethings lean Democratic by 52%-37%, an astonishing advantage of 15 percentage points. It’s a bigger gap than any other generation currently alive, and it’s already showing up in the voting booth. Last year, not only was turnout up, but young voters cast their ballots for Democratic congressional candidates by 60% to 38%.
All of this might be no more than a temporary blip if it were caused merely by a combination of George W. Bush’s historically dismal disapproval ratings and dissatisfaction over a grinding, unpopular war in Iraq — both of which will eventually come to an end one way or another. But that’s not what the evidence suggests. After all, the Gen Y movement toward the Democratic Party began in the early 90s, long before either Bush or the Iraq war had taken center stage. What’s more, in a recent New York Times/MTV poll of 17-29 year olds, young people were actually more optimistic about the war in Iraq than the rest of the population. It’s true that they don’t like President Bush much, but the war really isn’t the driving factor.
So what is? The most likely, and ironic, answer is a different war: the culture war that was originally stoked by the Christian Right and then taken up as electoral salvation by Republicans starting in the early nineties. Bush’s chief strategist, Karl Rove, famously believed the Christian Right to be the key to victory in 2000 and 2004, and recent Republican leaders from Newt Gingrich to Tom DeLay have embraced it with open arms.
But young people aren’t buying. Quite the contrary. For the most part, they’re turned off by the sex and gender fundamentalism that animates so much of the modern Republican Party’s social agenda. Polls show that most young voters are OK with abortion remaining legal. They have openly gay friends and are far more comfortable with gay marriage than their elders. They think that legalizing marijuana for personal consumption is common sense, not a sign of moral decay and the breakdown of western civilization.
So when Pat Buchanan declares that there’s “a religious war going on in our country for the soul of America” — as he did in prime time at the 1992 Republican convention — or when Jerry Falwell goes on national television and blames “the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians” for bringing on 9/11, young voters cringe. And when the Republican Party embraces their agenda, they go off to vote for Democrats.
Over the past 20 years Democrats have found themselves consistently on the wrong side of conservative campaigns based on social wedge issues like these. But although these campaigns have produced short-term gains for the GOP, they seem to have done so only at the expense of long-term ruin. A generation that’s more secular, more sexually at ease, and more tolerant is increasingly casting its lot with the Democratic Party and is increasingly showing up at the polls to prove it. And unlike changes in the voting patterns of independents or soccer moms or other favorites of the political sociologists, this change is likely to be permanent. If Gen Y acts like previous generations, keeping its political loyalties essentially for life, it means that the past 20 years have produced a time bomb: an enormous reservoir of new Democratic voters who are just beginning to flex their electoral muscles. 2008 will be their coming out party.
3. For a look into this reality, check out the youtube video of prototypic millennial, Jeffrey Lewis, performing his inspired “The Last Time I Did Acid I Went Insane.”
Chapter 5
1. For pics and additional information, see the chapter, The King Won’t Die, on my blog, Culture War, Class War at https://culturewarclasswar.wordpress.com/
These examples include,
For World War Two Generation
For Conservative Fifties Generation Followers, Fawning Fallow Fascist Generation
  • David H. Koch, born 1940
  • Charles G. Koch, born 1935

For Yuppie Freak WWII Gen Clones. Examples:
  • Eric Cantor, born 1963
  • Sarah Palin, born 1964
  • Rand Paul, born 1963
  • Paul Ryan, born 1970
These examples are meant to be illustrative, not exhaustive. See also “Balance the Budget on the Back of Billionaires” at the bottom of Life Vs. Matrix at https://culturewarclasswar.wordpress.com/chapters-complete-21/ch-27-life-vs-matrix/
which is on my blog, Culture War, Class War at https://culturewarclasswar.wordpress.com/
Chapter 6
1. See  “The History of Childhood As the History of Child Abuse” by Lloyd deMause on the Primal Spirit site, online.
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
1. On how people are made confused, intentionally, so they can be used for the profits of others, at extreme, dire cost to themselves, you might want to check out the video, “Doubt.” At the time of publication it was available on youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37c9KQLZEH4
It is a fantastic video. I encourage everyone to wait for it to get past the cigarette stuff at the beginning. That is only used to make a much bigger, more profound point a little further in.
For the video is actually about climate change … and what they are doing to confuse people about it, which will end up killing billions at least, if not all life on this planet, imo. (is that important enough for ya?)
Chapter 9
1. Helen Caldicott compares our complacency in the face of dire happenings — such as Fukushima — to the parents who respond emotionless when she has to tell them their child has leukemia. She says, “Get mad. Get emotional.” She urges us to take back our governments from these mad perpetrators of the darkest doom imaginable. And, in the least, occupy! She proclaims,
It’s time you took your country back…. Use your bodies like they did in Wisconsin. Do a Tahrir Square here. Take back New York. Take back the Congress. Invade the Congress! Those people belong to you. They are your representatives, and you are their leaders. But you’ve got to have some guts! And stop being so goddamn polite all the time! And don’t need approval. Step up to the plate….
We’ve got to be emotional…. It’s time we used our emotions and become incensed! Otherwise we’re not going to make it.
You may want to check out the video of this, which is available as of time of publishing at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCN-c4yd2LM under the title, Dr Helen Caldicott Protests Nuclear Reactors @ No Nukes Rally
2. You might want to step back and enjoy the humor in this as I did. This is my little, oh, “thank you note” to George W. Bush. The text is below, and the video of it is available on youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1wSvf1nWafw under the title, “Why Thank You George Bush.”
It is a satirical piece. A supposed admirer-fan-chum of George W. Bush encourages thank-yous for Bush’s “accomplishments,” which, described glowingly by the fan, sound quite the opposite to the listener. The fan has the most admiration for the great caper Bush “pulled off” at the end.
This comedic monologue combines the actual facts of recent history with a simple, unspun speculation of them, coming from the mouth of a fawning admirer who, for that reason, is allowed to elaborate on the shady dealings. So Bush, it is intimated, basks in the glory of having his ideas for illegal dealings praised as clever and awesome, or even cute.
This is political satire that will have you laughing from the total incongruity and irony of the monologue, but it will also leave you more informed and thinking. This is provocative, funny stuff.
[From February 2, 2010] Yesterday the airwaves were abuzz re: the CEO of Goldman Sachs taking $100 million in bonuses and thumbing his nose at Obama in doing so. Other reports this week are confirming the sleight-of-hand and shadiness surrounding the TARP bailout of the banks: Specifically, that TARP money handed out by Paulson was not recorded, let alone accounted for or monitored; and therefore it cannot be traced or even determined whether it went to benefit American corporations, let alone Americans, and not foreign corporations or even private interests or parties.
With these recent developments coming to light, along with the tea-baggers and Republicans continued blaming of Obama for everything from being born, daring to take the oath of office with unpresidential skin pigmentation, to daring to reverse the direction of the country from the cliff that Bush had so clearly left us heading for, it seems it’s time to revisit those days of yore, those nostalgic last glimmerings of a time when we had a government solidly on the side of the people, that is, helping them in keeping them comfortably distracted from the sight of the truckloads of loot being removed from the Treasury to the coffers of the filthy rich and the huge, oftentimes, foreign or international corporations.
Let us return, then, to December, 2008, and President Bush’s last couple months in office, and recalling those halcyon days, render our gratitude anew:
A Big “Thank You” to George W. Bush, with Admiration for “The Great Bush-Paulson-’Filthy Rich’ Caper”
C’MON EVERYONE, JOIN IN NOW!: “Why, Thank you, George Bush!”
This is my little, let us say, oh, “thank you note” to George Bush for all his “hard work.”
Also, in appreciation of the “Paulsie Scam,” which we will be dealing with forever….
luckily it’s been arranged that won’t be too long….
“Thanks George W. Bush for all your efforts and “hard work” which have led,
your decisions and your Administration solely to blame —
thank you for being “THE DECIDER!” by the way —
to leave us in the midst of so many dire and rapidly expanding problems, so that many people are not just wondering if they will have a job or money, but that even if this planet will make it through another fifty years.
So, hey, thanks for all the hard work and for relieving us and all our grandchildren of any money, and….
oh, I see, there probably won’t be any planet for the little dears to live on.
And everyone dead and all….
Why, gosh, Mister W., you’re so smart, you probably knew that!
So that’s why you and your cronies went so far as to commit grand larceny even at the end, scraping out the last of any money in the Treasury — wasn’t much left for Obama to do with anyway, after your eight years of partying on high with your Halliburton and your god-only-knows faceless “filthy rich,” gang.
Must’ve felt like the ol’ times, eh, except for the cocaine. . . Er, I mean, I didn’t mean to presume, I mean, you can have cocaine, who am I…
Oh! What a relief, glad to hear you did not partake like the others. It’s just that….
I mean George, friend, my Man here, c’mon there were some pretty weird dancing and stuff and things — right at the end there — that had me wondering and worrying….
Oh, I get it, no cocaine, but wink, wink, you’ve got your ways you say? Hmmm? Finding things better than cocaine and getting away with it?

Well, heh heh, I’m not about to judge. I mean if we can have Rush Limbaugh asking for drug users to be hung up by their finger nails, even as he’s got a constant drip for a codeine fix, and he gets away scot free, why shouldn’t you have your fun? You always said it was haaaard work.
But I gotta get back to that stunt with the Treasury at the very end. I mean many, many a lesser, “criminal,” shall we say, mind would never go back again and again, let alone in broad daylight and in front of the entire world! Gad!
Was this all your idea to totally take everything while you could? Somebody else’s?
Anyway, it was brilliant. First, you enlist the support of that guy Paulson. Er, now that I know more about him, being worth $700 million, like and, getting bonuses of $37 million in 2005 and then 16.4 million the next year before he came into office with you….
Why, could it actually be that he was the one that talked you into it!!! Naaaaaaw?
Certainly, he’d have to be characterized as one of them “filthy rich” that you helped to create, making people wonder who’s really calling the shots in Washington.…
But, never mind, even if it was his good idea — and now I understand he’s had plenty of experience — being involved with the folks who did Watergate and all … way back in his early days …  with Ehrlichman and all — so that — no doubt he’s got lots of good ideas, ya gotta give him that.
But, hell, don’t want to take any shine off your apples. No, it was you who chose him. And despite his background, managed to get him on your side and portrayed as one of the most well-respected men on Wall Street, at the time …  I remember that well…. I’d never know about his background, and I was most respect … everybody said it was a big … a good pick for you? ‘Course that was the old Wall Street; ‘cuz we now know those bonuses and stuff aren’t too popular right now.

Anyhow, brilliant move, you put this man of yours on task for the high-pressured auto trading that you knew would be required to pull off such a heist.
So you had your guy Paulson, former head of Goldman Sachs … coming to take this position of Secretary of Treasury for you. And now we find out that none of that money went where it was intended to go and it did not change the situation but rather exacerbated it! Brilliant! More on that later, but.…
more on that later, but, Jesus! I gotta say though … pretty incredible!!? I mean, Paulson himself, gets like, uh, what was it … 50 some billion to a German bank? That then owes … Goldman Sachs 16 billion, and so he makes off with 16 billion on top, is that like.…
What a crackup this guy is being! I mean he had everyone fooled, and, in fact, there is nothing at all being said about his involvement or his possible effects on what happened, even to this day.
That’s smoothness even you and I could learn from , y’know, Mister W and … stay away from him, man…. He’s just tooo smart for all of us, okay, I think he’ll have …  Heh, heh, I think he’s already had his hands in all of our pockets, heh, heh, I figure …  (I’m sorry bout that) …  But anyway….

Naw, c’mon, let’s, let’s … we wanta go over your accomplishments tonight, Mister President, I mean…. I mean … the whole thing … y’know, going to Congress, there…. Getting them to tally up that un-be-leiv-able sev-en hun-dred bill-ion dollars!  … like almost a trillion dollars…. I mean they could not get that high, I mean….
Anyway … so we heard how you guys gathered these guys together in Congress … I mean how it was done, y’know, it was like … well musta been like one of those movies … like Ocean’s elev … like an Ocean’s 33, yeah! And. Anyway, so you gathered those suckers, those guys, in Congress together, who had the money, huh?
And, heh, heh, heh, y’know, like, we heard afterwards how you guys gathered, Congressional Leaders … and … without explaining exactly how it would happen — of course Congressmen could not be expected to understand the workings of economics and high finance like a Paulson could. So, kindly Paulson and his deputies explained using analogies, how nice of them to bring it down to their level, so sweet of them….
Y’know analogies … like this is like this, this is like this, y’know, and … yeah, like that….
I just want to say how cute you are, W…. I mean, it was just, soooooo you….
Anyway, the analogy they used was that if Congress didn’t cough up the dough pronto — perhaps those weren’t the exact words, my bad. But anyway, that the consequences — and tell me W. this was all you, right? — The consequences would be that of a “GLOBAL ECONOMIC MELTDOWN” (tell me, that part was you, right?) a terminal global economic meltdown that would …  (wait, I’m getting an inkling here … was this next part, Cheney’s?) “End modern civilization as we know it for the foreseeable future.”

Wow! It gives me shivers just hearing it. I mean there ain’t no auto salesman in his wildest fantasies that could come up with something so absolutely, well, disabling.
You guys really took those suckers in Congress “out by the knees”! How could they have had a chance!
And, boy, there’s that implied nuclear thing again … “the meltdown”; yeah. Doesn’t have to make any sense; I mean economics melting, but hey close enough. How clever! I mean that whole image of a mushroom cloud, why it just worked stupendously to get us into a war. And now, this being economics.…
Oh, my God, I see it; it’s like a Fifties movie — “Oh, please help, we’re meeee-ee-llll-tiiinggg. It’s the economics mel-ting!” Yeah, super scary. Heck, anything like that from Fifties horror flicks … just good stuff. Heck, you know that most people believe that stuff anyway. So, I see, you feed them what they always feared anyway. Brilliant. Brilliant.
But that’s my George, the W himself, going with what he knows. And, hey, why bother coming up with anything else, that card’s a winner for you, my man….
And c’mon, level with me, I just gotta know, won’t tell anyone else …  Was that Cheney with the “end of civilization” part? C’mon, he’s already living the Wild West out there in Wyoming, he’s probably thinkin Mad Maxin it and everything …  I mean, c’mon…. C’mon, it’s got to be him, that’s just sooo Darth Vader, who else could think like that?
Please tell me I’m right … I feel like I know this guy and that is…. Well, that is just sooooo him!…
Chapter 14
1. For a humorous, hard hitting aside on this callous attitude of Republicans, on behalf of the rich, and as contrasted with Democratic efforts, check out an online audio monologue of mine, “‘You’re Turning Down my Money for ME!…To Stare Down…Who?!!’: Likely Constituent’s Response to Republican Governors Who Turned Down Unemployment Money from Stimulus to ‘Score Points’ Against Obama,” below.
The four and a half minute clip is taken from a longer, 35-minute audio, “Naked Republicans Blue Meanies Fleeing or Looking Foolish.”
About the audio:
[From July 2009] What a riot these Republicans are. There was Louisiana, Alaska, Arizona, South Carolina, and Texas governors refusing stimulus money to “show up Obama.” Then they turn around and ask for it secretly, or as in the case recently with Texas, which turned down almost 550 million in unemployment extension money at the time, only in this last week (7/14-7/18) to ask for a loan from the federal government for about 440 million, get this, to pay for extensions on unemployment. HA!
Well, in this clip, I play a constituent of the Louisiana governor who went nationally to say he was going to turn down the unemployment money from the stimulus. Now, if you’re a Louisianan, and you’re on unemployment…hmmm…just imagine how freaking happy you’d be to hear that! Well, that is what I express in this clip.
Keep in mind this happened just after this governor had given the (horrible) Republican “response” to Barack Obama’s unofficial “State of the Union” address in January. And this governor, Governor Bobby Jindal, at the time was being touted big time as a presidential front-runner for the Presidency in 2012.
You’re gonna love this response to the self-serving “more principles-than-brains” political one-upsmanships at the expense of their constituents by these Republican x@#&%$%#@@# governors.
And the text of the “You’re Turning Down my Money for ME…” audio:
Okay, so now I’m one of those “constituents.” I’m thinking…
Thanks a lot, bastard, you think I got it easy? You jerk! Who the hell you think you are down there in Louisiana, Mister freaking Governor who don’t need no additional unemployment money. No, idiot! You GOT a job! It’s me that can’t find work and that’s worried about my kids getting sick and, well, now the almost certainty, by the way because of your stupid-assed spiteful action to turn down my money for me. Now, I ‘m gonna lose my house, worry about my kids staying healthy, but you’ve done what? You’ve stood up to Obama (the guy who was gonna give me money?) You’ve said we don’t need no stinkin’ money and made yourself a spectacle on the national stage and, you think (here’s that lying again. You screwed us over and then you’re thinking you can tell us that we were better than that or something or other of a slick confusing fog of insanity.), and you think that this will give you a leg towards the Presidency.
Well, Mr. Jerk-off turning down my money for me like it’s my pride your fighting for, do you really think we are still that stupid, still that happy to be burdened and crushed for your aspirations, which obviously don’t include, you’ve made that damn clear, doing anything for any person, any “constituent,” any citizen, no, not anyone, and it’s clear that our burdens are so meaningless to you that you will heap misery on us to do, now what was that again? You “stood up” to Obama? What the fuck, are you in grade school? Do you think I give a shit who’s staring who down? I’m trying to live a life; a life that you have just put a cloud of unhappiness and worry over that will not go away for many many years; in fact I may never own a home again.
But I won’t go on about things that cause your eyes to glaze over. Just let me ask you this Mister, wise-potato? You “stood up” to the guy who’s gonna give me money, and hold out his hand to me. Okay, Mister more principles-than-brains, what’s your next big plan? Oh, I see, you’re gonna stand up to, well, Santa Claus. Oh, yeah, I hear it all right. Out on the National stage; spoutin out as if you’re talkin our mind; shit, you ain’t even one of us. But I hear you:
“Nope, Mister Matthews, you see we’re Louisianans? Not beggars. We don’t need Christmas. We can take care of ourselves. Let you folks out there have Christmas. I mean, if you’re so weak. So you’ve had it your whole life and now you’re kind of like addicted to it. Well okay. I’m not going to talk down any on those who are obviously so weak and needy.
“But, you see, Mister Matthews… Mister Matthews, well let me put it this way, you ever come down to Louisiana? Ever? To visit or anything? You have? So you’ve met with some of our citizens, have you? You have. Well, then you know what a strong-willed, strong-spirited, and PROUD people we are down here, don’t you? You agree. So you see that’s why. I knew you would agree because it’s so obviously true about the folks that live down here, I didn’t see how you’d miss it.
“So that’s okay, let Santa go somewhere else where he’s, you know, where they’re the folks that need to have a handout and can’t get by the year without having a good time. No, my constituents are strong-willed, and they wouldn’t have me letting any squirrely funny-suited guy out here prancin around and lookin foolish. Well, not us. We’re not foolish. We’re PROUD.”
Chapter 15
1. A lot of confusion about Boomers, Yuppies, And Generation X has been generated by the Census Bureau and mainstream media. A generation, see below, is defined as a cohort of people occurring roughly every twenty years who share some common viewpoint and experiences.
This is what a generation actually is:
Defining a generation
Strauss and Howe define a social generation as the aggregate of all people born over a span of roughly twenty years, or about the length of one phase of life: childhood, young adulthood, midlife, and old age. Particular generations are identified (from first birthyear to last) by looking for cohort groups of this length that share three criteria. First, members of a generation share what the authors call an age location in history: they encounter key historical events and social trends while occupying the same phase of life. Because members of a generation are shaped in lasting ways by the eras they encounter as children and young adults, they also tend to share certain common beliefs and behaviors. Aware of the experiences and traits that they share with their peers, members of a generation also tend to share a sense of common perceived membership in that generation. For example, in a 2007 Harvard Institute of Politics survey, Americans born 1982 to 1989 (whom Strauss and Howe define as the first-wave cohorts of the Millennial Generation) identified themselves as belonging to a “unique and distinct” generation, with an outlook different from people in their 30s or older. Surveys show that Boomers also strongly identify with their own age cohort.
Strauss and Howe base their definition of a generation on the work of diverse writers and social thinkers, from ancient writers such as Polybius and Ibn Khaldun to modern social theorists like José Ortega y Gasset, Karl Mannheim, John Stuart Mill, Émile Littré, Auguste Comte, and François Mentré.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Census Bureau definition of Boomers is different. See “Baby boomer” online, in Wikipedia.
Why would it be different? That is the crucial question. The Census Bureau’s definitions of Boomers and Generation X is as follows:
The Baby Boom Generation is the generation that was born following World War II, from 1946 up to 1964, a time that was marked by an increase in birth rates. The baby boom has been described variously as a “shockwave” and as “the pig in the python.” By the sheer force of its numbers, the boomers were a demographic bulge which remodeled society as it passed through it. In general, baby boomers are associated with a rejection or redefinition of traditional values; however, many commentators have disputed the extent of that rejection, noting the widespread continuity of values with older and younger generations. In Europe and North America boomers are widely associated with privilege, as many grew up in a time of affluence. One of the features of Boomers was that they tended to think of themselves as a special generation, very different from those that had come before them. In the 1960s, as the relatively large numbers of young people became teenagers and young adults, they, and those around them, created a very specific rhetoric around their cohort, and the change they were bringing about.
Generation X (also known as the 13th Generation and the Baby Busters) is the generation generally defined as those born after the baby boom ended from 1965 to 1981. The term generally includes people born during all or part of the 1960s: According to Strauss-Howe generational theory, 1961 is the starting point, though other sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau, consider it to have started in the mid-1960s. It ends in late 1970s to early 1980s, usually not later than 1981 or 1982. The term has also been used in different times and places for a number of different subcultures or countercultures since the 1950s.
From “Generation” in Wikipedia, online.
So why are those born 1961 through 1964 considered part of the Boomer Generation by the Census Bureau, which has informed much of the discussion on this in American media circles? Why is the Census Bureau attributing only 17 years to Generation X but 19 years to Boomers, when in fact the Boomers were born in a World War II “baby boom” that had them being born in a distinctly shorter period. Whereas Generation X was born of the Fifties Generation during a more languorous, hence longer period? Why is the Census Bureau including as Boomers those born at the end of the boom, in the years 1961 through 1964, when the number of births was decreasing, not “booming”? Why are they including as Boomers those who did not share or face the same historical and cultural markers that those who identify themselves as Boomers did?
I don’t know the answer, but I do know this decision by the Census Bureau has served pundits and right wing commentators in giving more weight to their positions by diluting the distinctly liberal voting record of actual Boomers. As I have been stating above, there was a concerted effort to scapegoat Boomers and to confuse them with Yuppie–Gen Xers. This confused definition by the Census Bureau is part of that. It has allowed pundits to slander the Sixties Generation, as I said, by attributing qualities to them that were actually a part of the WWII Generation’s Culture War Attack of creating a generation different from and more compliant than the Sixties Generation/ Boomers.
At any rate, that is why we have the discrepancy shown in this description of the Pew Report findings on “Boomer” voting patterns. Let’s look at a few relevant findings:
Of greatest interest to BTS are the Pew Research Center survey findings about Boomers.
  • In recent years Boomers increasingly call themselves conservatives. They voted for Republican candidates in 2010, but are still on the fence for the 2012 Presidential Election.
  • Older Boomers tilt Democratic while younger Boomers tilt Republican. When asked to name the best President during their lifetime, Boomers were evenly divided between Clinton and Reagan.
  • Younger Boomers and Generation Xers have been one of the most reliable Republican voting groups.
From “The Baby Boomer Voting Bloc” online.
This supports what I am saying about generational voting patterns. The difference lies in that this author has to differentiate between late Boomers and early Boomers. They are opposite in their voting patterns. This person would not be so confused if he placed the generational divide where it belongs, at 1961, not 1965. Boomers were born between 1946 and 1960, with Gen X beginning in 1961.
The Boom Generation defined by Howe and Strauss, born 1946 thru 1960 are the ones who vote consistently Democratic. They are the ones who shared common events and experiences growing up and were shaped by them, notably the Vietnam War; the JFK, RFK, and MLK assassinations in 1968; the sexual revolution; the explosion of the use of LSD and pot as drugs; and the counterculture. These events were not on the cultural map that faced the ones born 1961 through 1964, for they were too young. Yet how can one define a Boomer-Sixties Generation that does not include these as formative experiences?
So this discrepancy is an example of what I’m talking about in this chapter. For it continues the confusion about Boomers and contributes to the scapegoating and the denigration of Boomers as being a Me Generation and Yuppies being former hippies by simply getting confusing results by including some from Gen X — some actual Yuppies. To include those born between the four years, 1961 through 1964, you end up getting the confused results this author gets. You are including the likes of Sarah Palin and Eric Cantor, fer Chrissakes! I’ve never heard anyone mistake them for my generation. It would have Barack Obama, born 1961, categorized as a Boomer, as if there is not an obvious generational difference between him and some of the notable Boomers in his administration, like Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton. But by seeing that Obama is a Yuppie-Gen Xer, it helps explain the differences between him and the actual Boomer president, Bill Clinton.
For more on this, see “