Posts Tagged wealth creators

“The Secret of Men: What Patriarchal Cultures Never Tell Women, or Themselves — The Elders’ New Clothes and the Lie of It All

“The Secret of Men: What Patriarchal Cultures Never Tell Women, or Themselves — The Elders’ New Clothes and the Lie of It All

Which is Chapter 37 of *Dance of the Seven Veils I* by Michael Adzema

 

37

 

The Secret of Men:

What Patriarchal Cultures Never Tell Women, or Themselves — The Elders’ New Clothes and the Lie of It All

 

 

“…a big inducement they had for coming forth with the truth was the guilt they felt, in the rites, at having to follow through on inflicting suffering and torturing the younger men, all the time knowing the truth and the fact that there was no reason to be doing it. They said they simply could not bear the guilt, or the burden of lying anymore.”

“With their sights no longer in the heavens, they could finally observe the tribesmen before them.”

 

This overall masculine and controlling pattern of behavior — exhibited in our religious, transpersonal, and scientific priesthoods — has remarkable parallels to something which happened in recent history … several decades ago … among a particular culture. When I was in graduate school, pursuing a doctorate in psychological anthropology, in one colloquium I attended, an esteemed professor in the department — Don Tuzin, and this was at the University of California at San Diego, in the year 1987 — presented to the department, faculty and grad students, on an experience he had upon his last visit to his particular place of field work. This was a group in Papua New Guinea.

His story was fascinating for what it displayed that no one had ever ever come across. It was an example of cultural change unlike anything ever written in ethnographies, or histories.

The Secret of Men

The particular tribe of which Tuzin spoke had from time immemorial perpetuated a sequence of male rites of passage beginning with adolescents of a certain age. The rites were especially brutal and humiliating, including the infliction of physical pain and deprivation and repetitive oral sex to be performed by the initiates for the pleasure of the elders.1

They conducted many of these rituals throughout a man’s life, beginning at puberty. The good professor had participated in them to some extent, as part of his participant observation, which anthropolo­gists do. These rites were merciless, but in the course of them, the initiates were led to believe that great value would come from their endurance of the humiliations. For they would be given certain aspects of “secret” knowledge. At each one the participants were let in on some, a little each time, of the “secret knowledge,” had by only the eldest males in the tribe — the ones who had completed all the rites.

Furthermore, they were informed of the various other stages in the rites, which they would need to go through in the course of their life. Each of which would be excruciatingly painful. Yet each of which would be rewarded with a little more of the secret knowledge until, near the end of one’s life, one would be instructed into the highest knowledge of all: This was the knowledge that was the possession of only the most elderly males, the most “advanced” in said knowledge, in the culture.

The practices were severe, and women were not only left out of them, they were in danger of death if they were ever to learn any of what the men did or what they were taught … if they were to discover any of the “secret knowledge.” It follows that the whole truth was only known by the elders of the tribe.

 

The Elders’ “New Clothes”

Now, this anthropologist observed these ceremonies, studied them, and was let in on particular aspects of them. He could not be told “the whole truth” of course; for that was reserved for the elite, the elders — only those who had successfully completed all the stages of the ordeal, only those who had sufficiently suffered. Doctor Tuzin studied other aspects of the culture and returned again and again over the course of several decades.

However one time when he returned after a several year absence, he was to find everything changed.

The elders no longer ruled with an iron hand, in fact they were despised and openly rebuked, especially by women. The initiation ceremonies were no longer carried out. The women had more power … the elderly men were in shame. What had happened was that the elders — the ones who knew the “whole” truth — had confessed publicly, in a gathering of all the tribe, that there was no secret knowledge. There was none; there had never been any; it was all a ruse. The last secret to be conveyed in the final ritual was that there was no secret. It had all been a charade that had been carried on from time immemorial as part of the elders’ way of wielding power in the group and abusing and manip­ulating the younger men, keeping them subservient and afraid. No doubt also it served the function of keeping women as second-class citizens — in fear and under their thumb.

 

The elders revealed that the entire deception of “the secrets” had been maintained for the purpose of getting younger men to go through the ceremonies — with the inducement of greater and greater rewards — and in order to ensure their power and status in the community. Essentially, these elder men “fessed up” that the only last secret to be told was that there was no last secret; that it was all a sham; that the entire foundation had nothing beneath it — like a house of cards built in the middle of the air; that the center of the onion, after peeling back layer after layer, was in fact nothing.

Now, how do we know the elders were telling the truth this time? The elders confessed with all manner of shame. And they admitted that they were driven to reveal the truth because they could no longer bear the guilt of abusing the younger men, in these rites, knowing it was all a manipulation. They could no longer keep up the pretense.

Not only did they know it was a fraud, but the rest of the story is that the culture had been increasing its contacts and ties with the outside world, which held other beliefs — beliefs completely different from the ones that directed their own lives. One of those was a cargo cult that had become popular in their region.2 There were other signs to the community of another world out there beyond that of their tribe, as well.

Apparently the elders, knowing that reality did not have to be construed the way it had been for them and the way they had been impressing it on the younger — that is, knowing there were alternatives to their cultural beliefs, which were just as credible, or more so, than their own — and tormented by their secret feelings, come of their own aversion to inflicting punishment and suffering on the younger ones, gave in to their guilt about it all, came clean.

When I first heard this story, I could not help but think about its striking parallel to my situation in graduate school, where I happened to be at the time as a first-year doctoral student. Most of all this story reminds me of what Roger S. Jones (1982), a physicist, wrote about his colleagues — those scientists who through the suffering of years of tortuous graduate study and the equally challenging hoops of research, obtaining grants, and university tenure tracks are led to face the foundations of their beliefs as being as equally insubstantial as those tribal elders knew theirs to be. In this respect, Jones’s book, Physics as Metaphor, in which he revealed that secret, is practically the Western equivalent of such a confession as those tribal elders put before their people. Indeed, his feelings at carrying around the lie, the “deception” or “swindle,” are remarkably akin to those of the guilt-ridden tribal elders, so many thousands of miles and so many millions of cultural beliefs distant.

Anyway, for the Papua New Guinea elders, well, afterwards, rather than the respect they had enjoyed for practically forever, they were openly rebuked by one and all, including women.

In this light, it was speculated by anthropologists that this awareness of realities other than that of their own culture — the one that they were indoctrinated and tortured into accepting — may have had something to do with their losing faith in their way of doing things. It was suggested by such observers of the phenomenon that this had led to the elders finding themselves having remorse about such things as hurting other people. For they would now know that there are other ways of living and being; that everyone does not believe and live as they do in their own culture. Hence that the torture and suffering they inflicted were not absolutely necessary … as they had once rationalized, and then continued to convince themselves. It might be said that losing ultimate, or “Divine,” justification for their actions caused them to view their cruelties in the human context of the here-and-now relation. With their sights no longer in the heavens, they could finally observe the tribesmen before them.

Transformative Power of Multiculturalism

Before continuing, I want to point out the congruence of this pattern with the example I was giving before about the ways that religions are able to espouse life-negating beliefs, and the actions emanating from them, by positing another realm where the good is made bad (like hell) and the bad, good (like heaven). Only in this case in Papua New Guinea the justification of the bad, which made it “good,” was to be had at that time, not in an afterlife, but at the culmination of the rites when the secret would finally be revealed that there was no secret. Suffering was made okay in the present through it being said to be the only way to a greater good.

As I said, looking cross-culturally is a great assistance to seeing beyond such flawed understandings and to bringing one’s understand­ings of things in line with one’s natural conscience, rooted in quite ordinary, and profound, empathy. As an example, religions that encourage war, clitoridectomy, witch-burning, lynchings, and pogroms, viewed in multicultural context, lose their potency in driving such behavior when their rationalization that such atrocity is rectified, indeed made superlative, in some bizarro afterlife where the bad is made good (wars, witch burnings, clitoridectomies) and the good is made bad (sexuality, for example) are seen in contrast to the beliefs of other peoples. Given alternatives, through multicultural understanding, and diluting the power of an unassailed belief system to force compliance of cultural atrocity, one is left to rely on simple conscience and fellow feeling. And this changes everything … and for the better.

Another parallel to Western culture that I see is to that which happened in the Sixties, at the beginning of the postmodern era. For indeed that was a time when the truisms of Western material culture and capitalist-imperialist worldwide hegemony, married with conventional religious orthodoxy, would be broken down and left in tatters in its confrontation with a multicultural world and an influx of scientific findings which challenged all orthodoxies. The international event that would precipitate this awareness would be the Vietnam War, of course.

Here also it was the exposure to an outside world of many cultural understandings that was the precipitating event. And, it would have a similar result: People knowing that alternative ways were possible would question old ways that involved violence that their consciences cringed at but which previously they carried through on when they thought there was no alternative. What followed that reevaluation was an extravaganza of national finger-pointing and soul searching and a quest to find deeper foundations for right action and life purpose.

Truth Is Liable to Break Out

Anyway, getting back to Papua New Guinea, this is a true story. Still, it can be seen as a parable or metaphor for many things currently arising and especially so in the sciences. In addition to what it tells us about knowledge and epistemologies, the last part especially might be telling us a lot about the effects, one might say benefits, to be wrought, in terms of truth, by this century’s increasing mixing of cultures and races and by the worldwide emergence of a multiculturalism as a common basis of global belief.

We might also relate its message to the inauthentic nature of ritual and of initiation. For such rites bring about individual actions contrary to one’s desires, intents, or conscience; and they substitute those of culture and society, especially the elite sectors of that. Without such brutal insistence by outside forces, these actions would not come forth. They simply would not happen under the aegis of one’s empathy, conscience, and fellow feeling. This story also says something about how when belief and ritual are removed, real feelings, authentic feelings are possible.

This might be considered a directly opposite interpretation of the normal explanation of ritual/religion/beliefs and their relation to feeling, by the way. The usual explanation is that without such traditions of ritual, religion, and beliefs, people are left at the mercy of their aggressive and incestuous inner natures. Thus, when religion breaks down, all hell breaks loose — and then the situation in modern urban societies is usually pointed to, to bear this out.

However my interpretation is that belief/religion/ritual keep real feeling from happening. They also keep truth from happening. They keep spontaneity and authenticity from happening. Therefore, when religion breaks down, all truth is liable to break loose. And this is bound to be a bit disruptive at first — as it is true that any dam that holds a river in check is going to see that river explode across the countryside at first until it finally comes to rest in its normal stable peaceful courseway!

“Alternative Facts”

In several other of my works,3 I expound on the story of Gilgamesh — the ancient hero of mythology, exalted in what has been called the first true classic of literature, The Epic of Gilgamesh, predating even The Bible. I point out that in the story, Gilgamesh is portrayed as a murdering, raping king, and that he is allowed to be that way by a fearful populace and a set of codes and “morality,” sanctioned by “the gods,” that justified and allowed anything he would wish to do. I contrasted that with the “natural morality,” as I termed it, of his counterpart, Enkidu, who was a man of Nature. In the story, Enkidu’s inclination is to block Gilgamesh from harming and raping another, to fight him so as to protect the innocent.

What I bring out in my exegesis on the narrative is that nowhere, among all the scholars over the course of thousands of years — all being patriarchal ones, and that is significant — has there been any question of Gilgamesh’s supposed “right” to rape and murder. Like the murdering and raping of king’s and rulers throughout history and in their many campaigns of violence and wars, the assumption of thinking people in patriarchal cultures is that kings have the right to destroy and use others for arbitrary ends; much as one overlooks those caught in the crossfire of police shootouts, or those killed and maimed in police chases, or innocent women and children murdered in war as “collateral damage.”

This is analogous, as well, to the way the unprivileged voters in modern America allow the wealthy patrons of politicians to benefit themselves with tax breaks and corporate subsidies of extravagant amounts at the cost of their own lives and happiness at the lower end on the totem pole. It is akin to the way powerful authorities in society — usually men — are allowed, without consequence, their use and abuse of those below them in status. Much as the fact that Donald Trump being a sexual predator and promoter of sexual assault against women was of no consequence in blocking his ascendancy to the most powerful position in the world, just recently.

And as for the toadying academics throughout history, the literary critics of the renowned epic? Quite frankly, scholars have simply bought into the rationalizations within the story itself and expressed confusion as to why Enkidu would even consider blocking Gilgamesh from engaging in rape. Saying what amounts to, “Doesn’t Enkidu know that the gods allow Gilgamesh that right?” they show their inability to buck the justifications put upon them by patriarchal rulers from time immemorial. One notices here also a similarity with the way scholars, hiding behind a dogma of “cultural relativity,” rubber-stamp the oppressive tactics, rites, and rituals of cultures who suffocate their young and lowly along lines to benefit only that society’s elites, as we looked into previously.

My point here is to say that just as we saw through Gilgamesh’s conscious or unconscious wielding of directives from the “gods” allowing him to go raping women … ahem, “requiring” him to … everywhere about us there are elites supporting their power upon the backs of untruths, slight truths, outright lies … or, the more current phraseology, their  “alternative facts” … much as those conniving and lying elders from Papua New Guinea.

In any case, this story about cultural change and the secrets of men from the other side of the world stayed with me throughout the decades as a powerful metaphor of what I observed all around in patriarchal cultures:

The secret of men?

Well, it’s a lie.

There is no secret of men.

 

The Secret of the Wealthy

Lest one think the above is only an isolated incident, I wish to bring to mind how this is acted out daily on our news programs where the agendas and policies of the elite — the “men,” the patriarchs and elders of our culture — are laid out for us, are imprinted on us.

“Obvious Truths” — “Wealth Creators”

We hear in the commentary and talk show segments of such programs this common assumption that those with power and money are, in the words of media pundits and political personalities, “wealth creators.” This “obvious truth,” as I pointed out in my book, Culture War, Class War: Occupy Generations and the Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” is a lie. Not only has it never worked out that way, when the wealthy have had heaped upon them all kinds of riches — as for example in the low taxes during Hoover’s time, the tax cuts of Reagan, or the surplus giveaway through tax cuts of George W. Bush. But each time it had horrible consequences for one and all — including them! The results were the Great Depression, the Reagan-Bush recession of the late Eighties and early Nineties, and the Great Recession beginning in 2007 after Bush’s slicing of tax rates and mishandling of the nation’s wealth during his reign.

That it did not and never works is another example how — just like wars that never produce prosperity or gains, but only deplete a nation’s resources and set them back decades — still these gambits are put in motion. For the wealthy are every bit, if not more, driven by their unconscious pain — their prenatal and perinatal dynamics — as the rest of us. That they do their failing on a grand scale and — never learning from their mistakes — make their ludicrous pronouncements with the loudest of speakers only gives the rest of us examples in plain view of our own “normal” irrationality.

In fact, the wealthy are even more likely to make this mistake in that they are wedded to the mythology of a patriarchy, necessarily, whose values are those of domination and power. Not only would that preclude their ability to come up with stratagems and financial goals that would involve empathy with the downtrodden others, however much it would benefit themselves (Warren Buffett is one of the few in modern times who bucks that tendency). But also, to them, it is power and kingly royalty that are values. The well-being and financial security, let alone happiness, of any other than them is not even a factor in their equations.

Also, their values in this respect come of being aligned with “the father,” and his values, which involve this idea of superiority, a corollary of domination. Inherent in this idea is that power alone — their power in particular — is what is effective. Even if it is not. Their vision is of a patriarchally led society, with corporations and wealthy titans creating what is needed using the resources of all below and raining bounty upon all about … well, they’ll get around to that eventually they tell themselves. It is no wonder it was called “trickle-down economics.”

They truly believe in the power of masculinity to create; that it is the only power that can do that, the only fount of affluence and wealth. The idea that the masses — which to them represent the disorganized, the rabble, chaos, the natural, the feminine, and so on — can create, like a bounty of flora arising naturally from the multitudinous nutrients and potentiality of the Earth, is not only inconceivable to them, it is overlaid with outright contempt. Not only do they hate the feminine, for the reasons I have brought out, but they see only a top-down, a managed, a controlled, a made-to-happen creation of anything to be what is possible. For patriarchal is also authoritarian, controlling, dominating, enforcing, and Ego. They cannot see it otherwise.

The natural rising up of wealth out of the unorganized and self-interested efforts of the conscious decisions of the millions making up the masses is not only not conceivable to them, but, since it is not something controlled and smacks of uncontrolled Nature, anarchy, and the processes of the feminine such as birth, it is thought to be impossible. “Nothing comes from nothing.” “There is no free lunch.” These are sayings of the patriarchy, where there is no “feminine” grace, bounty, or unworked for rewards. Contrasting greatly with the worldview of the gatherer-hunters who see the world-at-large as the bounteous and freely giving Mother, or Goddess, these spawn of hierarchy, wealth, and patriarchy see nothing of any good that is not made to happen. We see the manifestations of Ego in that. By the way, such values never come up against the knowledge that their wealth to begin with is inherited and not earned. Such is the way Ego rationalizes to its own advantage, denying facts that might challenge or be contrary to what benefits one in believing it.

The Fall of “Obvious Truths”

As I pointed out in Culture War, Class War (2013), the rich are hardly wealth-creators for the reasons of simple psychology and commonly understood economics. Economically, the theory of marginal returns tells us that as wealth is attained, each additional dollar spent on the outer edge of its growth brings back less return … diminishing marginal returns it is called. In terms of wealth and jobs that breaks down to the fact that riches given to the already wealthy, i.e., “marginally,” has less return of jobs or more wealth. Why? Well, for the simple psychological reason that the wealthier one is, the less one is motivated to increase that wealth. So the less one is motivated to invest that wealth in a way that would increase employment.

While the science of economics is based on a model of an “economic man” with infinite wants, it fails to include that humans have limited ability, time, energy, desire to bring about the fruition of those wants. Thus there are actually limitations on wants, which never show up in economic models. For it would be too unwieldy to try to include psychological factors into sterile and discompassionate economic models. Yet the model showing diminishing returns demonstrates this psychological tendency to have less desire for more when one already has so much.

What is left out of their models is that for the wealthy there is less at stake. There is also increasingly more work involved in controlling the movement and management of wealth, at the extremes. Hence, increas­ing effort at the ends of the spectrum, combined with diminishing returns for that extra effort, why, that is the reason the wealthy fail at being wealth-creators. That is why throwing more dollars at those who already have plenty benefits only the few.

Whereas, as I pointed out in the book, using my own father as an example, a poorer person, not having achieved yet a “comfortable” status, is exceedingly more motivated to bring back as much as that person can from that same dollar that is casually overlooked by a wealthy person. Each dollar, for someone who has little, is sweated over and maximized. The specter of failure, which is outlined by that of concern about survival itself, is a much stronger motivation for focus and effort than is any motive involving additional power and wealth for those who are already “comfortable” in their financial circumstances, not to mention way beyond that.

So it is that, for the wealthy, such extra dollars were, historically, and still are, thrown away on luxuries and passive investments — art, yachts, rare objects and artifacts, and the like — none of which create wealth. Many of which are only embellishments to their egos, visible evidence of their claimed superiority over the rest of us.

Regardless, we hear endlessly how they are wealth-creators, better money-managers, and so on; and the majority of us swallow it whole. We do not question their wealth-making ability, not seeing these emperors have no clothes.

Thus, the wealthy and powerful attribute to themselves special power and special knowledge, and clearly we underlings fall for it; even more shamefully than those tribe folk duped in Papua New Guinea. For we could, if we wanted, know better. Nevertheless, we are told they are better than us, wiser, even godly; and most of us bend our knee.

However, none of that is true, relatively speaking. We see this in the way the wealthy bust their budgets and balloon the deficit, while claiming all the while, that they — Republicans in this example — are not only better for business but that they are better money managers and are “fiscal conservatives.” A prime example is American president, Ronald Reagan, whose election in 1980 was driven by a pledge to balance the budget. Whereupon, after his election and his enactment of a “Robin Hood in reverse” tax scheme, he fattened the wallets of the wealthy and elite of which he was a member. Did his policies create wealth? Hardly. Between he and his protégé, Bush the elder, his policies nearly quadrupled the National Deficit in a mere twelve years and set off one of the most severe recessions America has ever had. We are still paying interest, through our taxes, for that money given to the filthy rich back then, for their “partying.”

Meanwhile the Democrats — claimed by Republicans to be fiscally irresponsible and budget-busting, allegedly tossing money away on unneeded liberal programs — created, under John F. Kennedy and using the same high tax rates that had caused prosperity in the Fifties, the most prosperous America that has been so far, in the Sixties. A few decades later, Democrat Bill Clinton actually succeeded in Reagan’s supposed goal of balancing a budget. Indeed more than one. He created, actually, a budget surplus, lowered the National Debt, and left office with such a surplus that a topic of discussion among the talking heads and powerful in America at that time was what to do with all the extra money.

So, the wealthy? They are not wealth-creators they are wealth-spenders. The only wealth they create is borrowed from future genera­tions to pay for their fatter bank accounts, extravagant parties, and frivolous spending today. They are wealth-keepers, they are wealth-grabbers, is what all their actions are geared toward. And those actions, like the elders of Papua New Guinea, include any and all lies — facts and statistics and history be damned — that increases their power and wealth.

So, the secret of the wealthy?

It’s a lie.

There is no secret of the wealthy.

 

 

The Secret of the Powerful

So, we are told that the elite, the wealthy, have this “special knowledge,” which is like a special personal power or charisma, accruing to the powerful, to bring things about that ordinary folk cannot. Apparently, humans have a psychological tendency to impute spiritual or magical power to those who wield secular power. We see this in the way it was once thought spiritual power resided in the bodies of those at the top of the social pyramid in ancient times. It comes out as a belief in the kind of mojo that was thought to build up in the bodies of chieftains in the South Seas. The Polynesian word that was used for it is mana. It was a power that could be both transferred, through touching the person, but could also be harmful with which to be in contact. The more powerful the person, the stronger the mana, thus the greater danger and benefit that could accrue through proximity or touch.

The same peculiarity regarding the powerful and famous is to be found everywhere and always; we see it in modern societies in the cult of celebrity. Check out any of the magazines — People magazine, for example — in your supermarket check-out line. Also, you only have to notice how often folks will boast about having seen, rubbed shoulders with, shaken hands with, stood in a picture with … touched … some entertainment or political celebrity. They are saying that makes them important — you are to see them as a little more powerful for the incident — as if some of that personal electricity was transmitted to them through contact.

Of course, there is the obvious corollary of the presumptuous royalty of history identifying themselves as gods. More accurately it is analogous to the fact that the masses would fall for such a pretention. Perhaps the people demand it of their rulers, according to the analysis I am giving. Why would plebeians be so ignorant as to want their rulers to be superhuman, you ask?

Well, for many reasons, including the cognitive dissonance come of being subjugated and humiliated and at the same time seeing the obvious flaws, if not downright cruelties, of the overlords. Commoners are not merely frightened into looking away from the faults of their emperors, they know that to acknowledge the foolishness of their idols would be to concede their own stupidity, and cowardice, in not having seen it sooner. (Queue Donald Trump supporters, again.) The confusion, the cognitive dissonance of trying to hold both those facts in mind at the same time can be resolved if one attributes godly status to the ruler. Then, not only does the ruler not have to make sense but even his punishment and cruelty can be rationalized as some kind of warped “blessing.” His “rod and his staff,” oh, “they comfort me.”

It is no coincidence that civilizational theologies have gods like that, as well, thus priming the populace to sycophantically bow to unjustified abuse from their secular potentates. This reason is a popular one, as well, for it is exactly what we, most of us, do at the time of the primal scene. This is what we will look at in the next part of this book, Veil Three, having to do with “Infancy and Childhood, the Split … the Primal Scene.”

Another reason ordinary folk want to attribute godly status to their rulers is the “escape from freedom” come of a subservience that is embraced. It simplifies one’s life to not have to make major decisions and instead to let a higher up, like was the case in one’s authoritarian family growing up, do that for you. This one in particular we see in Trump supporters today, for they are practically defined by the fact that they embrace authoritarianism as the way to go since that was what they were required to accept in their childhoods.

Quite simply they do not want the responsibility of a life with choices; they want daddy to tell them what to do. Not only can they get “patted on the head” that way, they do not have to deal with the confusion come of the “philosophical bands” … we will come to that topic in the next part, too, the next Veil. The philosophic bands of consciousness arise with the split at the primal scene which has people — having abjured their real self with its bodily felt directives — feeling confused and beaten and in a situation where they would otherwise need to deal with difficult questions of “who to be” … if one were not told what one has to be.

Still another is the benefit, if one is lucky, of being physically close to that power and of having some of it accrue to oneself by proximity. Consider how fortunate Kellyanne Conway feels now with her newly acquired status and fame. One can “ride the coattails” of power and celebrity for which one has not risked nor brought about oneself, yet still — as sycophants everywhere think — garner some of the prestige and be the first dog in line for the scraps falling from the table.

We see it as well in the importance people put upon family names, upon lineages. As if there is some magical power inherent in what someone is called. As if they do not fasten their overcoats one button at a time like the rest of us. As if their underwear does not also need laundering. But when we look more deeply into their lives, we see they are as vulnerable, crass, morally challenged, and human as the rest of us.

So, the secret of the powerful?

It’s a lie.

There is no secret of the powerful.

 

 

 

 

— from Chapter 37, titled “The Secret of Men: What Patriarchal Cultures Never Tell Women, or Themselves — The Elders’ New Clothes and the Lie of It All”

 

— of *Dance of the Seven Veils I: Primal/Identity Psychology, Mythology, and Your Real Self* by Michael Adzema, as of December 2017, now available in print and kindle/e-book versions at Amazon at

 

 

 

Click for a free downloadable copy of this excerpt from Dance of the Seven Veils I, with my compliments.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR, Michael Adzema. Video below … interviewed by Michael Harrell

 


— see also other recent published versions of these ideas….

 

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

At Amazon —https://t.co/WMyo609jCi

 

 

 

And  *Prodigal Human: The Descents of Man* (2016).

At Amazon at

https://www.amazon.com/Prodigal-Human-Descents-Return-Grace/dp/1530838134/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1485034667&sr=1-1

 

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

At Amazon at

https://www.amazon.com/Wounded-Deer-Centaurs-Necessary-Prenatal/dp/1499653999?ie=UTF8&ref_=asap_bc

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

At Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Funny-God-Minds-Liberation-Return/dp/1499504845/ref=sr_1_7_twi_pap_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1485034771&sr=1-7

 

 

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

At Amazon — http://amzn.to/2anYVzi

 

 

 

 

 

and Experience Is Divinity: Matter As Metaphor  (2013).

At Amazon — http://amzn.to/2aeeZUA

 

 

 

and *Apocalypse Emergency: Love’s Wake-Up Call* (2013).

At Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Apocalypse-Emergency-Loves-Wake-Up-Return/dp/1492810355/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

At Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Apocalypse-NO-Return-Grace-Book-ebook/dp/B00FG09NNE/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr

 

and *Planetmates: The Great Reveal* (2014). At Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Planetmates-Great-Reveal-Return-Grace-ebook/dp/B00JZ418DA?ie=UTF8&ref_=asap_bc#nav-subnav

 

 

See Michael Adzema at Amazon for any other of the ten books currently in print.

At https://www.amazon.com/Michael-Adzema/e/B00J7F0URC/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

 

 

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PSPS:

 

DEC 13th THRU DEC 31st… Free copies (e-book/kindle) of *Funny God*, *Wounded Deer and Centaurs*, and *Apocalypse Emergency* by Michael Adzema. 3 of the most recent and recommended.

 

*Funny God:  The Tao of Funny God and the Mind’s True Liberation* is free Wednesday 12-13 thru Sunday 12-17.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Funny-God-Return-Grace-Book-ebook/dp/B00UV83F7Q/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

*Wounded Deer and Centaurs:  The Necessary Hero and the Prenatal Matrix of Human Events* is free 12-20 thru 12-24

 

https://www.amazon.com/Wounded-Deer-Centaurs-Necessary-Prenatal-ebook/dp/B01D3PL1Z6/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

*Apocalypse Emergency: Love’s Wake-Up Call* is free 12-27 thru 12-31

 

https://www.amazon.com/Apocalypse-Emergency-Return-Grace-Book-ebook/dp/B00FIV984U/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

 

Go to Michael Adzema at Amazon to get the books

 

https://www.amazon.com/Michael-Adzema/e/B00J7F0URC/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_11

 

Go get them, now!

 

 

 

If you appreciate these gifts, and you like the books and you want to show your appreciation, you can do this simply by spreading the word and, even better, by leaving a comment about any of them over at Amazon.

 

Enjoy, with my compliments.

 

*FUNNY GOD: THE TAO OF FUNNY GOD AND THE MIND’S TRUE LIBERATION* is a composition in three movements. It is activism, a prophecy, and a vision — integrated by the idea of Funny God.

 

“The Tao of Funny God” (Part One) unveils the necessary hero and understanding to face the imminent problems of humanity — environmental, political, and social … issues of peace and war, planet and life. Lunar and solar theologies and the rise of the Goddess and its meaning are brought into focus.

 

“Breaking News” (Part Two) is prophecy and good news framed as fiction … and some comedy. We see a coming together of heaven and earth unfold in the near future. With the pulling back of the curtain on the No-Form state of existence, brought about by very real near-death and death-death experiences, humanity finds itself on the brink of re-union with the rest of the consciousnesses of the Universe, which is revealed to be a Universe of Experience, shared.

 

“The Mind’s True Liberation” (Part Three) is vision — philosophy, spirituality, and the answers to the questions and problems of Existence mixed with humor. It describes and elicits an attitude and understanding of life and action that is good-hearted, transcendent, and liberating. You will find yourself saying, “My God, that makes sense! Why have I never heard that before?”

 

This book will leave you changed and smiling, at least. Some will taste enlightenment; others will sense liberation; and many will feel inspired and enthusiastic about participating in some of the grand and singular undertakings of our current age — an age that Funny God reveals to be affording an opportunity for a life of fulfillment and wonder unlike any since the beginning of time.

 

“these times are the coming together of heaven and earth….

 

“we walk in realms of the mythical, the archetypal….

 

“we are embraced by arms of Divinity … and find ourselves as fingers of God Herself….

 

“we are the myths in motion … are witness to secrets of eternity finally revealed….”

 

“we are players in epic stories of ends of days and beginnings of time….”

 

https://www.amazon.com/Funny-God-Return-Grace-Book-ebook/dp/B00UV83F7Q/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

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*WOUNDED DEER AND CENTAURS:  THE NECESSARY HERO AND THE PRENATAL MATRIX OF HUMAN EVENTS* is about the environmental crisis, activism, and psychology. It presents a major new theory in psychology, specifically in prenatal and perinatal psychology. This new understanding is the one crucial to saving our planet, our children, and ourselves. This book, also, reveals the ones — people probably like you — who are here now and destined to save this planet … or die trying.

 

This book is about the environmental crisis, activism, and psychology. It presents a major new theory in psychology, specifically in prenatal and perinatal psychology. This new understanding is the one crucial to saving our planet, our children, and ourselves. This book, also, reveals the ones — people probably like you — who are here now and destined to save this planet … or die trying.

 

For this book, Wounded Deer and Centaurs, confronts a situation in current times where we are on the brink of an apocalypse of unimaginable dimensions. We are bringing about both a suicidal-style ending of humans on Earth, a humanicide, as well as are taking down with us all other life on this planet … we are committing an ecocide.

 

This impending eco-humanicide requires of those currently alive to sacrifice on a scale previously uncalled for to forestall the consequences of the actions of generations of ancestors. This book deals with these elements of sacrifice; it shows where we have gone wrong; and it reveals where we could finally, after thousands of years of failure in righting the wrongs of evil, greed, injustice, war, and barbarity, finally, finally get it right.

 

We can finally understand the roots of the evil that lies within humanity. We can see how and why they come into being within humanity … and within humanity, alone, of all species. And we find those discoveries of the causes of evil in humanity lie alongside the happy revelation that that evil within humanity is not part of our deepest humanity, so it is not inevitable that we act it out! Humanity can do better. And we need to!

 

Luckily, there is a movement afoot in global humanity giving rise to individuals uniquely qualified, able, and willing to be the self-sacrificing ones required right now. This book introduces these personalities — these ones who, rather than act out the traumas and pain handed down for thousands of years, instead say “Let it end with me.” These wounded deer and centaurs are spotlighted in this book.

 

Generation after generation of humans have passed down their personal pain and trauma, in some form or other, onto their offspring. Back into unrecorded history this vicious cycle has perpetuated itself. But many of us in these extraordinary times, and goaded on by the specter of global catastrophe, are saying, “Let us not continue this madness any further!” Attempting to break the cycle of hurting and then inflicting hurt, attempting to halt the prevailing insanity, we make the Gandhian effort to take the energy into ourselves, to change ourselves lest we, also, be like the generation before — forever passing on the insane legacy.

 

This book reveals the deepest roots of that human insanity that would end our species. They are found in the experiences in the womb and at birth. We see here how they have led to the atrocities and wars of all time, and how they can be finally gone beyond.

 

We discover, in these chapters, how these earliest of human experiences set humans up to be the species separate from Nature. We can understand through these pages how and why exactly we as humans are insisting on self-annihilation. We can grok why we do not heed the warnings and continue depleting the Nature upon which we depend, even though it guarantees the end of humanity and the likely death of our children before their times.

 

Revealed here are the origins of the rapacious greed infecting hierarchical societies, from the beginnings of civilization, which today has created a two-tiered global society of haves and have-nots, with 1% shoring up their wealth at the expense of the lives and livelihoods of the remaining ones.

 

In these pages we can behold what needs to be done, how we can save our children, our planet, and even ourselves. Herein we receive the encouragement and spiritual conviction to take up our roles as the necessary heroes of our times — to right all these wrongs, to protect our precious Earth and its inhabitants, to save the lives of our children

 

https://www.amazon.com/Wounded-Deer-Centaurs-Necessary-Prenatal-ebook/dp/B01D3PL1Z6/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

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*APOCALYPSE EMERGENCY:  LOVE’S WAKE-UP CALL* is about a frightening global predicament that everyone seems to be aware of but which few people are giving the attention and seriousness it deserves. Why people would do that and why the media would be inclined to shy away is understandable.

 

We simply have no way of comprehending the magnitude of what is happening—the end of life on Earth—nor how fast it is occurring—likely in our lifetime—since no living thing on this planet in its multibillion year history has had to face what we are.

 

The environmental collapse now occurring can be compared to a trillion-alarm fire with everyone looking the other way. We need to respond to it with the urgency of being in a world war, marshaling all available national and world resources and not with the complacency of a boy-scout litter pick-up campaign.

 

“Love’s Wake-Up Call” goes back and forth between the horrors that are possible and this unique situation with the potential so strong to bring humans to raise themselves up and be led by their better angels more than any other time. At no other time in the history of the world was the truth of the saying “we’re all in this together” more patently true.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Apocalypse-Emergency-Return-Grace-Book-ebook/dp/B00FIV984U/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

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To purchase any of Michael Adzema’s books, currently there are ten of them, available in print and e-book formats, go to Michael Adzema’s books at Amazon.

 

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_14?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=michael+adzema&sprefix=michael+adzema%2Cstripbooks%2C269&crid=1EQBOA6ZD0HHA

 

 

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Money Madness and the Rise of “Obvious Truths” … Around Taxes, the Wealthy, Job Creation, Democrats, Republicans, Generations, Your Life, and You: When ALL You Hear Are Lies, You Think It HAS to Be Truth

Foolin’ the People … About Money, About “Us” (The 1%), About Taxes, About Job Creation, About Democrats, About Republicans, About Generations, About Your Life, About You: Choose the Red Pill

Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fifteen: Money Madness

Tax the Wealthy, You’re Taxing Me … Foolin’ the People About Money

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Obvious “Truths”—Fiscally Responsible Republicans and Tax and Spend Democrats

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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.”

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Obvious “Truth” – Tax the Wealthy, You’re Taxing Me

norquistBut 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?

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That’s a Small Business?

Tax Cut & Budget Deficitimages (12)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 smallbusiness? 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.

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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.

wealthydietSo, 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!”

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Obvious “Truth”: The Democrats’ Want to Take Your Money.

689024238The 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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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That’s a Lot of Money.

4223And 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. Police_Occupy_Protest_CartoonAnd 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. every_gop_2012_candidate-460x307And 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.

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Chase Didn’t Use the Money for What It Was Intended.

317486_10150357184771862_526281861_8706445_629664980_nGoldman 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.

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Obvious “Truths” – Tax and Spend Democrats

yaltasBut 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.

starveTheBeast

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. tumblr_lugzb6cRh11qfjo8fo1_500And 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

220px-Ronald_Reagan_televised_address_from_the_Oval_Office,_outlining_plan_for_Tax_Reduction_Legislation_July_1981But no, it wasn’t about the truth anymore, it was about how you made it to home base, how you got money for yourself. Mitt_Romney_Corporations_Are_PeopleAnd 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. grover_norquists_stunning_tax_heresy-460x307I 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.

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The Wealthy Are the Creative Sector All Right … Creative in Stealing Our Money

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Obvious “Truth”—The Wealthy Are the Job Creators

Botero

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.”

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Obvious “Truth” – Rich People Create the Jobs

Obvious “Truth”—The Wealthy Are Society’s Creative Sector.

3001217305_fc96d11d48_bYes, 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.

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They’re Creative All Right.

They’re the creative people, huh? Yea, 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.

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That’s not the kind of creativity I’d like to have. As far as creating jobs. Who creates jobs?

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Excess Wealth Given to the Rich Created High Art Prices, Not High Employment.

MetroTimesTaxwealthy-people1Here’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.

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mTigKNSThe 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?

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Real Truth—The Rich Will Squander or Sit on Extra Money.

lap-dancing-smallearn-money-game-testerI 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.

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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.

cash_mob_hawaii_the_sourceWhereas, 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? DSCN6340_edited-1You 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. LIQUOR-03_1314983701And 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 such opportunities till he finally came across one.

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Billionaires Are Not Highly Motivated to Become Millionaires.

img_20110619_14435620100226_momandpop_18So 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.

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But Nobody Will Point This Out!

82183663AW003_Meet_The_Pres495px-Donald_Trump_by_Gage_SkidmoreSo 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 5192217_f520propagandacountered 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.

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Makin’ People Foolish – Foolin’ the People About “Us” (The Rich)

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Makin’ Foolish People – Foolin’ the People About “Us” (The Rich)

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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.

occupy-wall-street

Confused People Take Comfort in Stupidity

When ALL You Hear Are Lies, You Begin to Think It Has to Be the Truth.

2009059026So, 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.

BUSHQ-UAEDA-q-IRAQI myself am that way. I was told that we should go into Iraq because there was weapons of mass destruction. I didn’t hear anybody saying anything differently. So I believed it. Well, that turned out to be a lie.

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dumbestgeneration381403781_348626541815889_100000056392831_1428618_1287915522_nIt’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.

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Democrats Feel Like They’re Talking to a Wall; They’re Talking to the Weary.

imagesdIt 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.

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17gore3-1906a00d834515edc69e200e55074c1e48833-800wiBut 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, “Ok, Mr. Democrat, Alan-Grayson-Die-Quickly-Signwhat 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. PepperSprayMoran1They’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.”

Thousands turn out at the State Capitol to rally against Obama policies, huge deficits, bigger government and higher taxes.  Corneliu Constantinescu (CQ) wears tea bags on his hat at the rally on the steps of the Capitol.</p><p> Photo by Doug Beghtel/ The Oregonian

But what the hell does that mean?

Confused People Retreat Into the Stupid.

talking_pointsWell, 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 images (9)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.

images (7)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.

imagesFrom 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.

21883Not 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. Medicare-keep-your-hands-off-my-medicareThey 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.

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GOP Priorities Exposed

And Burdened People Become Confused People—That’s Their Plan

20111130_foxnation_missionaccomplishedht_pepper_spray_meme_05_nt_111121_ssvSo, 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 can not 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.

healthcaredeniedSo 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.

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Rational Thought Replaced With Slogans … How Can Anyone Know the Truth?

How Can Folks Unite Against Injustices Hidden From Them

NKlkMI2SRL0IQlPdkbgbNQ 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.

3397681586_5618507954_oHow this expresses itself came out in a discussion yesterday 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. Michele_Bachmann_Census_Worker_CemetaryMy 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? fruitloopsCheese.”

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?

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How Can Folks Protect Themselves From “Wizards” Hiding “Behind the Curtain”?

Police_Occupy_Protest_CartoonKu-Klux-KlanPeople 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.

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1220-fox-news-misinformation_full_600FREESPEEMedia 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. megyn_kelly_essentiallyAnd, as I pointed out earlier, equal time turned into something where, no matter what lie is put PepperSprayCop_Magritteout 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?

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A Rising Tide Lifts All Yachts … The Rich Are Getting Richer and the Workers Are Getting Humiliated

Increasing Humiliation of Working People, the Rich Get Richer at Our Expense

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Obvious “Truth”:

  • A rising (economic) tide lifts all boats .

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Real Truth – The Rich Get Richer at Our Expense.

Life Has Gotten Harder – Real Truth

169007433_6c6845aa50crppdSo 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.

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Real Truth – Our Suffering Has Paid for Even Greater Obscenities by the Wealthy.

american_slaves36And to create this super-rich class where did that money come from? Well, it’s come at the cost of average people like us. slavesinegyptAnd 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.

RichestPulledAway

tumblr_ll9s8ivSVj1qjab9ao1_r8_500studentsAnd 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?

United-States-Incarceration

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?

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Well, he worked in retail so maybe he even ends up working for the same department store hat pushed him out of business. So what does that do to your self-esteem?

walmartpepper

oil-profit-sign-300x300Financial_Wealth_1There’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.

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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.

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Hippies, Yippies, Yuppies … How the 1% Diluted the Progressive Movement by Slandering Boomers to Foster Culture War Between Them and Gen Xers and to Distract from Their Own Looting

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The Yuppies Were Hardly Boomers … But This Idea Supports a Right-Wing Agenda by Pitting Progressives Against Each Other … Try the Red Pill Instead

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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.

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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.

Opinion - Moratorium demonstration

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 first hand. 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. [Footnote 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 any one 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 now 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 and The Big Lie About Yuppies Being Hippies.)

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. 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 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, they never understood or at least never mentioned that in using those terms for their “debates” they 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 vs. Yuppie” was a leftist debate about tactics. Today it would be considered a discussion of liberal vs. 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—i.e., 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 over seas.

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? [Footnote 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 91% range, not at 35% as today, and the country was prosperous. (See The Myth of JFK as a Supply Side Tax Cutter.) 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? [Footnote 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 from only last week. 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.

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. [Footnote 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.

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Finally a most visible example of the right-wing/Republican Fifties Generation – Gen X alliance was shown in the last 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.

Continue With Culture War, Class War, Chapter Sixteen: The Fall of “Obvious Truths”

Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fourteen: Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago?


The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Three – an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part Three,” click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below.

http://ecdn0.hark.com/swfs/player.swf?1305835355


Footnotes

1. A lot of confusion about Boomers, Yuppies, And Generation X has been generated by the Census Bureau and main stream 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

Lynch Armenia Five generations.pngStrauss 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.[16] 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.[17] Surveys show that Boomers also strongly identify with their own age cohort.[18]

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.[19]

From Strauss-Howe generational theory

Meanwhile, the U.S. Census Bureau definition of Boomers is different. See Baby boomer.

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.[10] The baby boom has been described variously as a “shockwave”[11] and as “the pig in the python.”[12] 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.[11] 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.[13]

From Generation in Wikipedia.

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? 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 Bureaus including as Boomers those born at those end years of 1961 through 1964 when the number of births was decreasing, not “booming”?

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

This supports what I’m 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 wouldn’t be so confused if he placed the generational divide where it belongs, at 1961, not 1965. Boomers were born between 1946 and 1960, as shown in the chart below, which also shows Generation X beginning in 1961.

The Boom Generation defined by Howe and Strauss, as shown in the chart above, 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 assasinations 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 article. 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 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 Generation Jones, which is the term given for those born 1954 through 1964. They are seen to be very different from the Boomers. They did not confront the same social realities as did Boomers. They even came of age after the Vietnam War. They missed the counterculture movement. It is ludicrous for generationalists to include these with Baby Boomers as especially the second half of these have an entirely opposite world view from Boomers. Their stalwarts include Rick Santorum (born 1958), Sarah Palin (born 1964) and Eric Cantor (born 1963)…hardly Boomers. Notice that it also includes Rand Paul (born 1963), who as expected is the son of a Fifties Generation parent with whom he is allied, Ron Paul (born 1935).

See also the write up on Generation X in Wikipedia, which addresses this confusion as to where the dividing line between Boomers and Gen X is as well.

Finally, see Baby boomer, which discusses this confusion and adds two important considerations: The person who coined the term “baby boomer” described them as those born between 1943 and 1960. So why did the Census Bureau change it? The second point discussed is that many theorists have two distinct generations during this supposed period of Census Bureau Boomers—Boomers and Generation Jones, which are said to be those born 1956 through 1964. So this latter group is not included with Boomers.

Is all this not confusing enough? Does it not play into the right wing agenda to dilute their opponents power by confusing their opponents profile, so they can lob any charge against them? Or attribute any self-congratulatory trait to them, as they wish?

Most of all, this strikes me as devious in that it allows right wingers to blame Boomers for the cadre of youth, the Yuppies, who were actually their creation—that of the 1% and those reactionary culture war forces—and were in no way influenced by, so should hardly be included in, “my generation” of Boomers, the Sixties Generation.

2. BLAM!! From the site, Gallup Politics, of May 8, 2009. Even though continuing the misinformation that Boomers were born up till 1964, going with the Census Bureau definition, Gallup Poll data still solidly support the premise that Boomers are predominantly Democrats, as well as the fact that Millennials are as well.

Democrats Do Best Among Generation Y and Baby Boomers

Republicans do better among Generation X

by Frank Newport

PRINCETON, NJ — Although Democrats currently enjoy a party identification advantage over Republicans among Americans at every age between 18 to 85, the Democrats’ greatest advantages come among those in their 20s and baby boomers in their late 40s and 50s. Republicans, on the other hand, come closest to parity with Democrats among Generation Xers in their late 30s and early 40s and among seniors in their late 60s….

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Demographers and social observers have made attempts over the years to classify Americans into generational groups based on the social, political, economic, and cultural environment of the years in which they grew up and “came of age.” The most clearly delineated such group is the baby boomers, generally agreed to be those born between 1946 and 1964 — or roughly ages 45 to 63 today. Generation X follows the baby boom and is generally considered to be those born between 1965 and 1979 — or roughly between ages 30 and 44. Those younger than Generation X have been labeled Generation Y or the “Millennials,” who are 18 to 29 today. There are various ways of grouping those who preceded the baby boom generation, including the famous sobriquet “The Greatest Generation” used by Tom Brokaw in his book of the same name, but it is convenient to label those who today are 64 and older as seniors (even though some in this group would no doubt resist that label).

From Democrats Do Best Among Generation Y and Baby Boomers.

Notice here that not only are arbitrary birth figures used to stipulate Boomers and Generation Xers, but everyone older than a Boomer is classified as part of the World War Two Generation—”The Greatest Generation.” So they would have everyone born in the forty-five year period from 1901 through 1945 to be WWII Gen even though some were born during the war and had their coming of age after the war and in the decade of the Fifties—those born 1925 through 1945. Elsewhere this generation has been termed the Silent Generation or the Eisenhower-Presley-McCarthy Generation…I’m calling them the Fifties Generation for convenience sake. Still, the study does find Democratic tendencies among Boomers, however wrongly defined, and Millennials. And it finds Republican leanings among Generation Xers, however wrongly defined, and the Fifties Generation, however wrongly defined again, as shown by the graph below:

The current data suggest that political party identification in the United States today follows these generational patterns to a perhaps surprising degree.

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· Generation Y (18 to 29) clearly is skewed fairly strongly in the direction of being either independent or Democratic in political orientation. This group constitutes a significant weakness for the Republican Party.

· Generation X (30 to 44) includes some of the strongest support for Republicans. For whatever reasons, the Democratic over Republican gap among Generation Xers, particularly those ages 37 to 43 at the heart of this generation, is on a relative basis much closer to parity than for any other age group with the exception of those in their late 60s.

· Baby Boomers (45 to 63) skew Democratic in their political orientation, with the Democratic advantage reaching a peak at ages 58 and 59.

· Seniors have a more mixed pattern of party identification, with Republicans gaining on a relative basis among those in their late 60s, but with Democrats doing better as Americans age into their 70s and early 80s.

Bottom Line

Democrats have a significant advantage over Republicans today in terms of overall party identification, and the data reviewed here show that this advantage holds at every age between 18 and 85.

At the same time, there are clear ebbs and flows in the degree of this Democratic advantage across the age spectrum. Democrats have the greatest advantage vis a vis Republicans among Americans at the very youngest voting age and also among members of the fabled baby boom, particularly those in their late 50s. Republicans do relatively better among those who are in Generation X, including in particular those in their late 30s and early 40s. Republicans also show greater support among older Americans in their late 60s….

There is…the hypothesis that the differences are explained by the unique circumstances that surrounded the coming of age of the generations. Baby boomers, as is well known, grew up in the tumultuous age of civil rights, Vietnam, Woodstock, and Watergate. It is certainly possible that these events have marked this generation in a more Democratic or liberal direction for life. Many Generation Xers came of age during the Reagan-Bush years (1980 to 1992) or the “Republican Revolution” marked by the 1994 midterm elections. Today’s Generation Y has reached maturity in a time period largely marked by the administration of George W. Bush, and certainly for many the nascent Obama administration is a major formative factor in their political orientation….

From Democrats Do Best Among Generation Y and Baby Boomers.

Now contrast what above is said in the Gallup Poll about Boomers with what is said here about “late Boomers,” or who Howe and Strauss and other social scientists would call Generation X, and I would call Gen X-Yuppies:

the 1980-1988 run where young Late Boomers broke heavily for Republicans in the three Presidential landslides of that decade. When that generation grew to political maturity, it resulted in by far the most Republican-identifying generation in over half a century, the 1994 Republican landslide, and the general sense of creeping conservatism the country experienced through the 1990’s and first half of our current decade

From The Importance of Generation Y.

The article above also describes the Democratic voting patterns of the Millennials, or what they call Generation Y.

On the idea that the Millennials being the sons and daughters of the Sixties Generation/Boomers, as I continually point out, I offer the following definition of Millennials from WhatIs.com

Millennials, an abbreviation for millennial generation, is a term used by demographers to describe a segment of the population born between 1980 and 2000 (approximately). Sometimes referred to in the media as “Generation Y,” millennials are the children of the post-WWII baby boomer generation.

A few things about millennials:

  • According the U.S. census bureau, around forty percent of the millennial generation is African American, Latino, Asian or of a racially-mixed background.
  • There are about 76 million millennials in the United States (based on research using the years 1978-2000).
  • Millennials are the last generation born in the 20th century.
  • Twenty percent have at least one immigrant parent.
  • A number of studies, including one by the Center for American Progress, anticipate that millennials will be the first American generation to do less well economically than their parents.
  • Millennials are also sometimes called the Net generation because (at least according to some people) they don’t remember a time when there was no Internet.
  • As a result of growing up with the Internet and associated devices, millennials are often said to be the most technologically savvy generation to date.

Finally a most visible example of the right-wing/Republican Fifties Generation – Gen X alliance was shown in the last 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.

3. There is some scapegoating done by Millennials out of this misinformation. The following was published a few days ago, on June 17, 2012. It is further validation of the antagonism against Boomers regarding the issues of the movement—OWS and Wisconsin union:

The War on Boomers

9/11 and the “war on terror” became part of common jargon. Recently, the “war on women” and the “war on religion” are hot political topics. Now, I’m thinking there is a “war on boomers”….

I was sitting at a reception party table politely nibbling on a too-sweet slice of wedding cake chased with lukewarm burnt coffee when a recent graduate seated at the table started whining about how unfairly life was treating him. First, he believed that four years of (sheltered) college life entitled him to a first-class ticket to affluence with a side-trip on a guaranteed career path. And, now there were no job tickets to be had and (worse) he was expected to pay back all the money he borrowed to get in on this total sham. Life was so unfair! His debt should be forgiven – because it was only fair to be compensated for this bait-and-switch.

He continued his tirade. Boomers should be retiring to make room for all the recent grads that deserve jobs now. It’s only right. On top of this, these boomers with all of their massive wealth were actually going to bankrupt Social Security – a heartless action since they don’t actually need it. The injustices just keep piling for the new graduates with their superior skills and up-to-date knowledge. Down the road he had nothing to look forward to — once he finally got that plum job that he had a right to based on his attendance at an institution of higher learning – except huge national debt and no Social Security or Medicare, an unwanted and unwarranted gift from self-centered boomers.

And, now I’m starting to pay attention to what seemed idle conversation. I glance at the Count who gives me a look that says, “Don’t go there –– please!” I concentrate on my cake that is now too dry to choke down without more lukewarm burnt coffee; and wonder if Clueless thinks those seated at the table are in our 30s (or perhaps our 80s!) and am amazed at how he can find it acceptable to disparage all boomers while sitting among them. Generously, I wonder if maybe he just has a sarcastic sense of humor. However, Clueless continues. I smolder some and then catch the Count’s glance again. He slyly places his thumb and first finger on either side of his mouth pulling a smile into place – and I reluctantly accept his wisdom. But, the Count did get an earful on the way home.

  • I think about Julie, a single mother, who helped two kids through college while working 40 hours per work as an administrative assistant, selling Avon after work hours, and running a food concession stand at weekend events during the summer. Julie has little in her nest-egg, but her children do have a chance at the American dream – although it will always require some effort.
  • I suspect that John, another co-worker, was on track to fund his retirement. Unfortunately, at about the same time the 2008 financial crisis cratered his retirement savings his father was diagnosed with Alzheimers. John knew he should avoid using his tax-deferred savings at the bottom of the financial market, but his father’s healthcare bills had to be paid. John’s plan to retire at 62 is a dream lost to reality.
  • I bumped into Mary Beth at the greenhouse when we were buying our bedding plants. She pointed us to the “spikes” that the Count insists on adding to the geranium-filled pots on the patio. As we caught up on gossip about former neighbors, she confided that plants have always been her hobby and that this “green” job was perfect. This temporary part-time job was crucial to replacing the family income lost when Jerry was laid off from his welding job – months ago. And, she laughed when she acknowledged that, in fact, “work” was a respite from a house now over-crowded since her daughter and family are living in the basement. I’m pretty certain that Jerry and Mary Beth — both boomers, planners, and savers – no longer have the luxury of maximizing their tax-deferred retirement savings accounts (or even the ability to set aside savings) as they approach the age they used to believe would be the end of their full-time working careers.

With investment portfolios and home values shrinking, medical expenses and LTC costs rising, financial worries for some boomers are dire.

  • A May 2010 Pew Research survey found that 60% of Americans age 50 to 61 believe they may need to delay retirement because of the recession. Plus, the highest percentage of any generation, 57% of boomers, said that their household finances have deteriorated in the past few years.
  • In 2010 the ERBI reported that only 13% of workers age 55 or older are “very confident” that have enough money to live comfortably in retirement.
  • Some have labeled the boomer generation the “sandwich generation”, a group dealing with healthcare issues of their elderly parents at the same time they are backstopping the impact of the stagnant economy on their boomerang grown children.

Aiming fingers and lobbing blame doesn’t solve anything. We are all in this together since our generations are linked in complex ways. We are all fighting the same war of financial and economic uncertainty, just not at on the same battlefield – as determined by our stage of life. A war on anyone does nothing but divide us – when the ultimate victory is prosperity for everyone.

From The War on Boomers

Continue With Culture War, Class War, Chapter Sixteen: The Fall of “Obvious Truths”

Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fourteen: Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago?

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The Wealthy Are the Creative Sector All Right … Creative in Stealing Our Money: Money Madness … Foolin’ the People About Money, Part 2

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Money Madness … Foolin’ the People About Money, Part Two: Obvious “Truth”—The Wealthy Are the Job Creators

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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.”

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Obvious “Truth” – Rich People Create the Jobs

Obvious “Truth”—The Wealthy Are Society’s Creative Sector.

3001217305_fc96d11d48_bYes, 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. 

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They’re Creative All Right.

They’re the creative people, huh? Yea, 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.

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That’s not the kind of creativity I’d like to have. As far as creating jobs. Who creates jobs?

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Excess Wealth Given to the Rich Created High Art Prices, Not High Employment.

MetroTimesTaxwealthy-people1Here’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.

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mTigKNSThe 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?

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Real Truth—The Rich Will Squander or Sit on Extra Money.

lap-dancing-smallearn-money-game-testerI 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.

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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.

cash_mob_hawaii_the_sourceWhereas, 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? DSCN6340_edited-1You 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. LIQUOR-03_1314983701And 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 such opportunities till he finally came across one.

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Billionaires Are Not Highly Motivated to Become Millionaires.

img_20110619_14435620100226_momandpop_18So 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.

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But Nobody Will Point This Out!

82183663AW003_Meet_The_Pres495px-Donald_Trump_by_Gage_SkidmoreSo 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 5192217_f520propagandacountered 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.

..

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Continue with Makin’ People Foolish – Foolin’ the People About “Us” (The Rich): Money Madness … Foolin’ the People About Money, Part 3

Return to Tax the Wealthy, You’re Taxing Me: Money Madness … Foolin’ the People About Money, Part 1

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The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Three – an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form below, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part Three,” click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below.

http://ecdn0.hark.com/swfs/player.swf?1305835355



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Continue with Makin’ People Foolish – Foolin’ the People About “Us” (The Rich): Money Madness … Foolin’ the People

Return to Tax the Wealthy, You’re Taxing Me: Money Madness … Foolin’ the People About Money, Part 1

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