Time to Tell the Truth

“There is a level to which one can descend when trying to find common ground for communication that is just too far.”

This is true when discussing religious arguments against science and especially arguments ‘against’ evolution. This is true when considering human impact on the earth’s ecosystems. And it is true when growth based economic behaviors are represented as our only options for our future. There are other examples, but these have the most far-reaching consequences.

• An argument against evolution could only be an empirical one: ‘Dr. Xyz has demonstrated, in peer reviewed and replicated studies, that genes don’t actually produce the proteins that are the basis for the form and function of the organism; furthermore, genetic material is not passed on from one generation to the next dependent on the success of an organism to function adaptively in an ecosystem.’

To say that “Evolution is just a theory!” is simply a misunderstanding of how ideas function to form increasingly veridical concepts. Descending the argument to a level of ‘the meeting of minds’ infantilizes and trivializes the argument to a point of absurdity. A baseball fan would not even consider talking to someone who, in an equivalent way, was so tragically ignorant of baseball.

And yet we are supposed to give such failures of education, comprehension and curiosity the standing of a fully developed and worthy system of thought. It is quite simply ridiculous: it is foolish to listen to the opinion of someone who doesn’t know where the shortstop should position for a left-handed hitter who routinely pulls toward right field or who would put a player 3rd in the batting rotation who has a 250 average. My uncle would have just said it, “Shut up! You don’t know your ass from second base.”

• Human impact on the earth’s biosphere includes, but is not limited to: salinization of millions of acres, cutting of millions of acres of forest, creating large regions of ‘artificial climate’ in and around cities, industrial areas and agricultural areas, putting chemical industrial products and wastes into every cubic inch of the earth’s air, water and soil, increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels from about 200 ppm to over 350 ppm in the last 200 years, using nearly half of the total photosynthetic product of the earth and increasing population (and consumption) exponentially by more than a hundred thousand percent over what is but a brief moment in geological/evolutionary time. These are not the actions of a species that is so limited in power that we need not even consider its impact.

Rather than the baseball metaphor, this is more a matter of straight up, outright denial. No one sitting in traffic on a six lane city loop-road with nothing but the tops of buildings for miles in all directions can fail to recognize human impact unless they are just batshit crazy; and many many of us are. Anyone who drinks bottled water because they are afraid of pollution or germs can’t say that humans are not impacting a world where streams were once safe to drink from; but they do. It is impossible to read the data on human use of the earth’s productive capacity without realizing our impact; but it is possible to not read the data.

• The dominate economic design, in function and in law, requires an increase in the use of materials and energy, and then distributes the wealth created by the increase to those who are said, in law, to ‘own’ the materials and energy.

Here is what is obvious:

It is obvious that every living thing has as much ‘right’ to a place to be and the sustenance to prosper as any other living thing. ‘Ownership” is a function of force, not some abstract right.

It is obvious that the proper role of law, as a counter to raw force, is to effectively distribute the excess accumulations of material wealth, beyond what is required by the members of the community, based on the simple assumption that it is the community that creates the wealth by its education, cultural history and support of the individuals who, acting as agents of the community, perform the greatest acts of accumulation.

It is also obvious that without compensating the taking of material and energy from the environment in such a way that the environment is sustained, that all life in a given space would be endangered.

And lastly it is obvious that the most common experience, once a community is broken into those with wealth and those without wealth, is that those with wealth use it to control community law and power dominating the rest with force and fear – and today with propaganda as a thin layer over force.

While all of these things are obvious if given a moment’s thought, it is also clear that the idea of private property has become the central madness of our economic system and that this madness drives growth economics so powerfully that no other idea is even allowed. How to comport the kinds of economic growth considered essential with the biophysical realities of zero-growth exchanges (compensations) and the absolute limits that are put on uncompensated takings by the evolutionary functioning of ecosystems is so far from inclusion in deliberation that those in power find such suggestions ludicrous.

But what is, however, beyond all credulity is that so many could have gotten so disconnected from the biological basis that allows the living state to exist; that those who are seemingly directing the human enterprise see essential reality in geopolitics, economics, weapons, money and power, electronic media, and not in biophysical cycles of water, nitrogen, carbon, oxygen; not in biodiversity’s essential role in environmental ‘free services’, the dangers of perturbing natural stabilities and so much more.

*****

So why do we encourage these uninformed and ridiculous opinions by listening to them, even trivializing sound thought and learning to try and communicate with these levels of misinformation? There are three basic reasons: (1) the fabrications and distortions are the basis of political and economic power, (2) elite power actively perpetuates the ignorance of the Many and (3) vast numbers of people are consequently very poorly informed.

But, you can bet (and win) that the children of the economic elite are not going to schools that reject the teaching of the very best science and math available. You can also be sure that these elites are making practical preparations for climate change and other dramatic effects of human impact. And they also are acutely aware of the consequences of growth economics, the opportunities to redistribute the tiny bits of wealth held in billions of hands using governmental taxing powers (or simple corruption) as the last great entrepreneurial act before closing down growth for the Many as the last and only means to retain a livable environment for themselves.1

What is truly unthinkable is that the Many should become thoughtfully aware of the desperate position that we are in. And yet, reasonably accurate opinions keep bubbling up from the fetid pool of media propaganda.

I, for one, am tired of trying to find common ground with the uniformed, the ignorant and the societally insane. Those who have been poisoned by the information cyanide cannot be allowed to take our time. The elites may or may not have adopted the strategy with intention, but like wounding soldiers depletes the ranks more than killing outright, the confused are more demanding than those fully demented.

We need to speak out forcefully, with the full strength of the message. ‘Fixing’ the language to the form and presumed understanding of the confused only confuses more, allows misinterpretation and provides open ground for counter attack.2

My message: institutional religions are the centers of societal insanity, human action is leading to a major extinction event and the most basic assumptions of our economic behaviors, private property and growth, are the greatest possible crimes against human life and the living earth. There are people who are ready to hear these things, ready to be told the truth. The fully demented are KIA, the confused have to be left for now. It is time to tell the truth and gather the informed.

  1. US hegemony, in the form of the G8 and G20, has now made it official; the economic and power elites have committed to the support and survival of the economic behaviors destined to conflict with biophysical reality. They have, in the simplest terms, chosen their team. It is as though the New York Yankees had decided not to play on the league schedule or by the game’s rules, but rather to arm themselves with automatic weapons and take on the other teams in one grand finale.

    The elites have made their calculations and seem to have decided that it is time to gather up the wealth, both abstract and substantial; that their best chance is to call and play their hand with as much devastation as is required to maintain their superior position. The goal of cutting global deficits in half is code for removing the titular middle class. A significantly large educated class with goals that include controlling and inhibiting the power of an elite has been an obstacle to elite dominance for 200 years. It would appear that the economic elite believes that obstacle can now be overcome. []

  2. I am using violent imagery for the simple reason that we must understand that we are entering a period of violence; done to us, and soon enough, done by us. []

James Keye is the nom de plume of a biologist and psychologist who after discovering a mismatch between academe and himself went into private business for many years. His whole post-pubescent life has been focused on understanding at both the intellectual and personal levels what it is to be of the human species; he claims some success. Email him at: jkeye1632@gmail.com. Read other articles by James, or visit James's website.

82 comments on this article so far ...

Comments RSS feed

  1. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 9:13am #

    Oh yes James that was very good although there maybe more that know than we think.

  2. MichaelKenny said on June 30th, 2010 at 10:45am #

    “Institutional religions are the centers of societal insanity”.
    That may well be true, but could Mr Keye refer us to the peer reviewed and replicated studies which demonstrate it?

  3. bozh said on June 30th, 2010 at 11:13am #

    I am glad that JK echos my view that the division of people into wealthy and non-wealthy is iniquitous.
    Perhaps he may agree with me that that had been the root cause for all evils that had been happening to us on interpersonal and inter-group levels over the last 10 to 15 k yrs.

    And peculiar science or school of thought, called religions, had always played a negative role.
    And as JK says, the wealthy people– or as i say: clerico-plutocratic people– control us by waging wars, poverty, profusions of injustices, demonization of people who think differently, torture, fear, and miseducation.
    So, it does seem that JK and i agreed on the basics. tnx

  4. bozh said on June 30th, 2010 at 11:22am #

    Another fair observation and conclusion by James Keye: Rich people are aware of global warming and are ensuring that they do not suffer because of that.

    Or as i say, they are now buying land in novaya zemya. It wld be m mighty balmy and still pristine-virgin in 50 yrs.

    Bns wld fry slowly or quickly. And they are the quietest and least concerned. And why alert them and to share earth’s riches with them?
    American #1 will always do better than an american # 2, 3, 4, 5,6. tnx

  5. Deadbeat said on June 30th, 2010 at 12:10pm #

    I generally agree with the main point of Mr. Keyes’s article that it’s time to tell the truth. In the response section of his last article his reply to me about Capitalism and Socialism he writes ….

    Mr. Deadbeat, While I broadly agree with your angst, and do see capitalism as destructive, simply improving the incentive system and not finding the deeper forces driving our out-of-control relationship with biophysical reality is a ship already missed.

    Socialism is not a mere adjustment or improvement to the incentive system it is a radical altering of how humans beings produce and live. Private property is eliminated. Some advocate the entire eradication of money. As Socialism is democratic this means that human needs as well as the environment are considered first and foremost. Therefore I am in agreement with your statement …


    And yet we are supposed to give such failures of education, comprehension and curiosity the standing of a fully developed and worthy system of thought. It is quite simply ridiculous: it is foolish to listen to the opinion of someone who doesn’t know where the shortstop should position for a left-handed hitter who routinely pulls toward right field or who would put a player 3rd in the batting rotation who has a 250 average. My uncle would have just said it, “Shut up! You don’t know your ass from second base.”

    If the goal is revolution then as you infer there needs to be clarity. Communication, education, and comprehension is our only real tool for change. I see no reason why there should be an avoidance of a critical analysis of Capitalism and why there should be an abandonment of the tenets of Socialism.

  6. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 1:07pm #

    Kerry, Lieberman Offer to Further Weaken Climate Bill

    The bipartisan sponsors of the main Senate climate and energy bill say they’re now willing to further weaken their measure to win Republican support. Senators John Kerry and Joseph Lieberman made the pledge Tuesday following a meeting with President Obama and other lawmakers at the White House. Kerry said he and Lieberman are prepared to scale back their bill on top of initial compromises. Democracy now

    Scale back is it watered down and this is about the whole ball game. Remember the bill in the first place is a joke on the human race and now that must be scaled back. A real try and only a start tax carbon and or nationalize the assholes. Oh there not assholes sorry I was trying to be nice. This is just batshit crazy.

  7. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 1:18pm #

    http://www.freakyweather.com/

    Let’s see what this site tells us by Just November and as of today take a look.

  8. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 1:43pm #

    http://www.columbia.edu/~mhs119/UpdatedFigures/SolarIrad.pdf

    Again there it is and by 2013 or there about’s oh crap. They’re now willing to further weaken their measure to win Republican support I guess we are about to find out then what. Oh maybe some information will kind of be harder to get along with war is peace and just more ignorance is strength. Is it just me or does it seem we are starting to see who is selling there soul to the highest bidder. Always’ been that way no this time seems different.

  9. Cameron said on June 30th, 2010 at 5:15pm #

    Deadbeat, you’re right. I believe Mr. Keyes misunderstands socialism. The media has made a concerted effort to distort to the meaning of socialism. We probably need to say anti-capitalist socialism to be clear that it’s not a refinement of capitalism but rather a radically different economic system where private ownership of means of production is abolished. Those who produce own what they produce unlike capitalism in which those who don’t produce appropriate goods made by those who produce.
    The capitalist class is very well aware of the destruction of the environment. It’s that class that is converting natural wealth such as water, fertile land, mineral deposits, etc. to profits. Converts use value into exchange value. Capital has one goal and only one: maximize profit. To that end capitalism cannot save the environment and will continue the destruction until the end. Even if it’s willing it is not capable and we have seen its attempts in Kyoto and Copenhagen. So it’s either exterminism or anti-capitalist socialism. Socialism has never been more relevant and more urgent than now. There is no other alternative. Either the continuation of capitalism leads to complete economic and ecological collapse or anti-capitalist socialism.

    I’m one of those that would argue that in the second phase of anti-capitalist socialism where all traces of capitalism are gone there will be no need for money.
    Money is the only measure of value and exists because of supply and demand imbalances. Supply and demand imbalances exist because of the competition.
    When we reach the phase when we produce to satisfy needs then supply and demand will be in equilibrium.
    I’d argue that during the initial phase of anti-capitalist socialism there will e traces of capitalism. Inequalities exist (Critique of Gotha’s Program by Marx). Labor value system is on its way out but still exists and is gradually phase out until the second phase when there will complete equality.

  10. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 6:48pm #

    I just watched a special on CNBC Americas crude Reality. After watching this I remembered what James Lovelock said.

    I don’t think we’re yet evolved to the point where we’re clever enough to handle a complex a situation as climate change. We’re very active animals. We like to think: “Ah yes, this will be a good policy,” but it’s almost never that simple. Lovelock

    After watching this special he is 100% correct. Boone Pickens Texas oil man said we will need oil and I guess coal for fifty years and John Hofmeister said we will be using more oil in ten years not less and I guess coal. Much of the talk was of market based solutions and at least these humans have not evolved to the point where there clever enough to handle a complex a situation as climate change. Not one word about taxing carbon yes cap and trade did come up and as we know a joke on the human race a watered down joke on the human race. It was said 16 billion for research that should do the trick. Yes maybe on the planet Zenon not Earth. Is CNBC fair and balanced no more on the lines Capitalism is the best path to prosperity here is where a prison for the mind comes into play. We will be on oil and I guess coal for fifty years mind boggling in it’s madness with what we now know and they get away with it. Like the Gulf oil spill there is no amount of money on Earth to fix what we see same with climate change I guess these un evolved humans just can’t think the unthinkable tell the truth and how do we know when they are not telling the truth when there lips start moving.

  11. Don Hawkins said on June 30th, 2010 at 6:59pm #

    Cameron well put simple and to the point as simple as possible but not simpler. The hard part is beginning.

  12. Late Revolution said on July 1st, 2010 at 12:21am #

    Here’s a news flash for you, Don: If you’re watching the lying, distracting corporate news channels, you haven’t got a brain in your little “I vote Democrat” head and you’re part of the problem. Try picking up a subscription to Mother Jones, The Progressive, or any of a number of nonprofit, unbound-to-corporate-control news sources that are going to tell you the truth about what the hell is really going on in the world. You seem to be just another clueless politically correct American who doesn’t realize that the Democrats are just as much the ‘bad guys’ as the Republicans, and the news channels are bullshitting you and withholding important facts ’round-the-clock. Step One to be deserving of an opinion is to not be led by the nose by the very corporate powers that are screwing you on a daily basis.

  13. Don Hawkins said on July 1st, 2010 at 3:18am #

    Do you think am being led by the nose by the very corporate powers that are screwing me on a daily basis. Well maybe prozac or would Lithium be a better choice. Maybe baby steps little baby steps am witting this comment then go have coffee and then read Glenn Beck’s new book maybe join the tea party sorry baby steps slow down you move to fast you got to make the morning last got to run the wife will be up soon I have to fix the kitchen cabinet door today ever see that commercial on TV by the AARP sick.

  14. Don Hawkins said on July 1st, 2010 at 4:31am #

    Alan Greenspan is on CNBC this morning and I sent this to them the new Commercial from the good people at AARP and the kitchen cabinet door you have to see it to understand just how far the thinking of a few has gone. I guess they just enjoy planting the seed so to speak. Fight back the truth the knowledge.

    Ok,
    I wonder as Alan did change his mind on how the World work’s any new thought’s on say building the motor not for profit. Maybe sail off into the sunset a better choice that is if he’s not say fixing the kitchen cabinet door.

    Don

  15. James Keye said on July 1st, 2010 at 7:32am #

    Don, almost always the thief has to disclose at some point to carry out the theft; even the embezzler tires of the intrigue and runs off to Belize. There is just getting to be less and less reason to hide intentions as the power to carry them out successfully matures. We will continue to be amazed at the blatant obviousness of the oligarchs as it becomes just as easy (or easier) to steal in the light of day as in the dark of night.

    MichaelKenny, since religion has a deductive structure, it doesn’t respond to inductive arguments: just the opposite of science in that regard. It is actually more complicated than that, but for the moment… “insanity n. 1) mental illness of such a severe nature that a person cannot distinguish fantasy from reality.” Religion by its very nature is fantasy. Present religious fantasy is so disconnected from the realities of the world’s functioning that it is seriously dangerous. This deductive form does impact religion.

    Deadbeat and Cameron, I am not completely ignorant of socialism. What concerns me about your argument is what seems almost a religious zeal for a utopian interpretation of socialism. To the extent that socialism doesn’t speak to the growth of population, consumption and total economic activity it will not meet our true need – to find ways to live in adaptive integration with biophysical reality. It could well be that socialism, as it is generally understood, might be a social-economic form better able to lead to that end, but I don’t see it as the end itself.

  16. bozh said on July 1st, 2010 at 8:07am #

    james keye,
    U may be aware of the fact than an ism, is not an ism applied. In ur post above u do not mention this fact; thus, my wonder ab that!
    And to repeat for ab 10th time, let’s ignore all the isms for time being and simple note that of a necessary and desirable dictum-teaching, there is an optimal regime of living.
    Optimal for all biota, that is. Surely, no one cld object to search for best living for all people and biota.

    Socialism, and however that may be explained by anyone [and each person having the right to do so] is hated by at least 90% and as high as 99% of all people in christian lands.

    I am talking ab socialism of my understanding and not necessarily of anybody else’s. Regarding some lands that are not christians, i cannot venture a guess ab how they feel ab the word socialism.

    In my understanding of socialism, i include not only a timocratic democracy-schooling, but also holding referendums.

    So, i am splitting the governance into three ilks: a demo-timocratic, demo-theocratic, and democratic one; or a demic and aristocratic one. tnx

  17. observing said on July 1st, 2010 at 9:33am #

    Once more, we examine those three little words Mankind finds so hard to say…

    I DON’T KNOW.

    All foundational religious beliefs and even much scientific theory which are used to justify the status quo social structures, when rationally examined, should at some point produce these words.

    And again, it is OK not to “know” these things. In fact, “believing” specifics about God, reincarnation or even how gravity works is counterproductive to finding true knowledge. By definition, once a belief is accepted the search for the real knowledge must stop.

    No more Chrystal Spheres holding the planets in perfect orbits, no more Onward Christian Soldiers, no more Jihads, no more Gods hurling thunderbolts.

    Are humans now brave and wise enough, that when we reach the limits of what we DO know, to merely say “We don’t know”.

  18. bozh said on July 1st, 2010 at 10:02am #

    Observing,
    I add to ur accurate-adequate observation: it is not in vain tha pols and clergy use the word “believe’ to lead on people that they “know”, but avoid like plague tu use it.
    And as u say they also avoid to say :i don’t know [?and possibly never will know] tnx

  19. bozh said on July 1st, 2010 at 10:27am #

    How’s honesty or socialism gonna work anywhere on planet with ALL of us being dishonest and thieves?

    OK! Kids, have u noticed a deliberate and extremely serious blunder in the above paragraph?
    I said, WE ALL ARE DIHONEST….
    And that is not true! What i have done is criminal. Here’s the correct description of our panhuman behavior: we AREN’T dishonest nor have we BECAME dishonest– WE HAVE LEARNED to behave in an dishonest and robbing way.
    The latter linguistic structure proffers us an option to LEARN HOW TO BEHAVE in some other way.

    The verb TO BE stands for essence of people and things and does not imply that such an essence can ever be changed.
    Children, seems to me, appear particularly vulnerable to such thinking; some adults also!
    In add’n, everything appears as a process and not as a steady and unchangeable matter.
    Hope appears as a process also. Hopelessness today cannot ever be hopelessnes tomorrow or in millennia.
    So, it wld be beneficial to people to stop using such structures as: he’s a thief, liar, deceiver, evil, stupid, schizo, short, smart, etc. tnx

  20. teafoe2 said on July 1st, 2010 at 11:57am #

    “Socialism” means different things to different people. To be a useful term in the context of these verbal exchanges on DV, I think it is predictably going to give rise to misunderstanding, based on the different meanings one or another attaches to it.

    If you detach it from all its historically acquired baggage and reduce it to the simple proposition “abolish private property in the means of production”, it would seem that even James Keye views the idea favorably.

    Of course, even that simple idea, if actually carried out, necessarily implies some alternative system of production and distribution. There would need to be provision for adjudication of disputes, for Family Law courts, noise pollution ordinances, etc.

    Some system of public investment in making information of public interest available to the public would be needed. An educational system.

    Of course, and this is the rub, well maybe just one of many but probably the biggest one, is that those who find the currently accepted property laws satisfactory will put up a lot of resistance to change, and if change is made, will try by any means available to change things back.

    So some forethought must be given to that set of scenarios.

    The classic formula is that the Working Class and their allies will overthrow the Dictatorship of the Capitalists aka “the bourgeoisie”, and replace it with the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, i.e. the Working Class broadly defined as all those unable to live off their investments.

    The biggest problem I see with this idea is that the Working Class is so numerous and so diverse, that I don’t see how “it” could ever successfully organize itself to exercise such a “proletarian dictatorship” without some segments of the class plus class allies taking advantage of the situation to push the particular interests of the segments they belong to, to the detriment of the interests of the majority.

    ??? Or, as the man said, “I don’t know”:)

  21. Don Hawkins said on July 1st, 2010 at 12:20pm #

    George Carlin:

    Some people see the glass half full. Others see it half empty. I see a glass that’s twice as big as it needs to be.

  22. Cameron said on July 1st, 2010 at 2:26pm #

    James Keyes and teafo2, I must say the sentence “simply improving the incentive system” made me think that what’s meant by socialism is an extension of capitalism. If that’s not the thinking then I stand corrected.
    Property relations is the root of every mode of production. That property relations will create laws, culture, etc. to protect the interests of property owners. Explosion of population arises from the need of capital to grow. Now socialism will not try to satisfy the needs of capital. It, as you know, will try to satisfy the needs of people. Capitalism is an unnatural and irrational system. Socialism is natural and rational and will have to find ways for humans and all other living to be in harmony with nature. That is what I believe. We don’t know what laws and culture will be like just as those who lived in fuedalism had no clue what it’ll be like under capitalism.
    History of human kind is history of class struggle and revolutions. What our we seeing in Greece, Spain, etc.? Yes demands are economic in nature. But with capitalism unable to solving the crisis/depression due to it’s nature those demands will eventually escalate to political demands. It’ll evolve to that point. My fear is that the crisis may lead to another devastating world war.

  23. teafoe2 said on July 1st, 2010 at 3:56pm #

    I confess the point about “improving the incentive system” made very little sense to me.

    To take up Cameron’s last point first: from what I can see via internet news, Link TV, DN, al Jazzera etc, it looks to me like there is a devastating world war going on right now. Lucky me, I’ve found a place here considerably behind the frontlines. It’s considered a Safe Area, because most of the killing that happens is not done by the Security organs of the State but by persons acting in civilian capacity, mostly while operating motor vehicles but also in the course of assaults, some initiated for gain, others because of emotional states.

    The reason it seems more like “Peacetime” than like “Wartime” ala WWII is that the sides are so unequal, with the weaker side taking all but a tiny fraction of the casualties.

    “Revolution is not a dinner party”; those who have something to lose fear the revolution. Which includes me; I do enjoy a measure of peace and quiet nowadays, at least when the kids aren’t running the trunk-mounted subwoofers. God I hate that infrasound.

    It’s more than an aesthetic objection since I know it’s doing physiological damage every second it continues. BTW there’s a site, “LowertheBoom.org” (if I have it right?) which has all the latest medical info, about disintegrating your bone marrow & other negative effect on the human phys. But I disgress.

    Anyway we kibbitzers need to keep in mind that global class warfare is happening NOW. (I’d have put that in italics instead of caps, don’t mean to shout but did want to add emphasis)/
    I believe that the one-half of the human population of our planet who subsist on less than one US Dollar per day are unlikely to share my worries about the eventual course of a group offering itself as The Socialist Alternative. I think most will take the “caint be no worst than this here bunch” adjustment.
    So I don’t think it’s up to people like us DV trolls to decide whether there will be a revolution, since it’s happening while we type or read as the case may be.
    There is some question whether those involved can put differences aside long enough to achieve a degree of unity in action adequate to the challenge of the conjuncture.

    But the question for most of us troll types is whether to align ourselves actively with the struggles of the most oppressed segments of the global public, or not.

    If we answer Yes, a host of questions immediately arise.
    If your answer is No, I won’t be wasting time on you.
    But you who answer with a “Maybe” or a “well yes but…”: experience tells me most of you really mean No, Hell No, but you don’t want to come out and be frank about it.
    However we must not assume to read minds on the basis of stastistickle evidence, so let the Dialog proceed:)

  24. Don Hawkins said on July 1st, 2010 at 4:39pm #

    I saved James’s write and the comments and in a few months as the United States Senate passes a watered down climate bill or not I will read all of it again as they just might have to throw the switch on the Internet as I have a feeling the you know what is going to hit the fan and of course the problem itself we show itself more boring this will not be. Many minds know I don’t think they will stay silent. Capitalism is an unnatural and irrational system. Oh that’s not true oh yes it is as we now see kind of hard to miss.

  25. Max Shields said on July 1st, 2010 at 5:05pm #

    The problem with this talk of Capitalism and Socialism is the very notion of production and distribution. Where is the question: To what end? What is a job? Why must we create them? Why do we produce things we don’t need by people who we call workers and produce nothing of value and take their lives and nature and toss it all into the mix?

    Very simply put, this is more finance than economy. It is absent the most fundamental law, stated by Sir Albert Howard: “the law of return”. A just economy, one that has meaning to real human beings in a world filled with living creatures and molecules (not meant merely for the few plutocrat billionaires) would follow the order set by Wendell Berry: First is nature, then economies of land use, then manufacturing economy and lastly consumer economy. Put in this order there is no socialism or capitalism. There is sustainability, a just economics as if PEOPLE MATTER.

  26. Don Hawkins said on July 1st, 2010 at 5:40pm #

    Let’s see the United States Senate may or may not pass a climate bill. The bill cap and trade will not work even if it isn’t watered down. So a bill that will not work in the first place will then be watered down then they can pass it maybe and tell us it’s the best they can do. There is something very very wrong here.

  27. Don Hawkins said on July 2nd, 2010 at 2:24am #

    Glenn Beck does have some of this figured out except he kind of leaves stuff out on purpose. The climate bill cap and trade will not work a joke on the human race and why you ask because on the third planet from the Sun we have what’s called supply and demand. Demand that’s all of us we the people and supply is fossil fuel corporations well it’s really the Earth but don’t tell anybody. If the price for fossil fuels is cheaper than renewable’s they will be used. Oh refer to James Hansen and a few more on what is now happening and will happen if we keep burning fossil fuels Al Gore who I guess is now a sex muffin kind of sold his soul to the highest bidder think environmental group’s and a great example will be this weekend of the little problem the temperatures in the Northeast rather warm as so called leaders and we the people do stuff the so called leaders some of them will go on talk show’s make-up, lighting and talk shit as we barbecue and maybe go to Wallyworld maybe fix the kitchen cabinet door thank you AARP sick. So why even have the bill cap and trade well it will make some much money/debt and make people think we are doing something when we really are not. Yes but now it has to be watered down or maybe not even pass correct remember the fat cat’s a great example is BP please note how they think again sick. Now the dirty big secret is tax carbon and return the tax back to the people to kind of keep things going although on a slower scale as we now see and why does this never come up to make a long story short it’s called Universal deceit, greed and a boat called Bob. Do any of you find this nut’s oh that’s right it’s the best they can do with the law of supply and demand it’s the law stupid. How does this all play out not well not well at all so Glenn Beck if you do read DV just maybe you need a few more players on your blackboard a great place to start would be your boss. I guess many will find this not only amazing but funny. Well in a few years as that train coming down the track is right in our face funny it will not be. We could try and make everything as simple as possible but not simpler but yes the un evolved among us find this to complex or just maybe to simple.

  28. Don Hawkins said on July 2nd, 2010 at 3:21am #

    The battle for the mountain top is about to start well it has already started the only problem so far is the players are nut’s. Even watch the History Channel last night a little on West Virginia and the early day’s of coal and the battle for the workers to get a living wage and what a battle is was. What has changed not much the workers are still getting screwed and it is still about the money, jobs. With what we now know coal will send us all down the drain. Again start in West Virginia, Pennsylvania renewable energy above ground job’s and who will control the production the people that’s who oops the fat cat’s will probably not like this idea well beware there just maybe a new sheriff in town who’s pay comes from the fat cat’s. Well if the truth be known that is the way it is now think judges and right up the ladder to the top. The G20 comes to mind. Yes boring this will not be you see the problem itself that many seem to think is 100 years away well they are off by 100 years.

  29. Don Hawkins said on July 2nd, 2010 at 3:50am #

    If this could happen what about the fat cat’s what will there job be?
    Well because they have been sitting high on the hill and letting other people
    do the dirty work there hands are weak. So if we the people control the
    production heck they can do the paper work write the checks so to speak and
    yes at first some will try funny stuff so they get to go work on the floor
    with the boy’s and girls who do do the work. The first part of there training
    will be a cup of coffee and some conversation. Shocking well my thought’s
    exactly and darn it where are the Hatfield and McCoy’s when you need them
    kind of on the same side this time around.

  30. James Keye said on July 2nd, 2010 at 2:07pm #

    In a comment to Deadbeat from another essay I said, “(I) do see capitalism as destructive, (but) simply improving the incentive system and not finding the deeper forces driving our out-of-control relationship with biophysical reality is a ship already missed.”

    I am not saying that socialism is an extension of capitalism, rather that some of the economic incentives would be improved. But the deeper incentives to produce and consume excessively are not necessarily improved by moving from a capitalist social economic model to a socialist economic model – unless one includes expectations not normally associated with socialism. We must pay attention to the structural incentives that work on the level of immediate functioning of daily life; these do not necessarily come with an ‘ism’ attached.

  31. James Keye said on July 2nd, 2010 at 2:16pm #

    Don, I am of the Hatfield and McCoys. Part of my father’s family lived on the mountain between them. And there is still some of that rigid sense of direct “justice” coursing in the veins of my kin. Even have photos of cousins standing on the porch of a clapboard house with guns in hand. I remember, however, those folks as pretty mean spirited.

  32. Max Shields said on July 2nd, 2010 at 2:28pm #

    James Keye has the issue by the tail. Until we see the totality of the problem and remove ourselves from the old “class struggle” is the issue rather than a symptom we’re doomed to stay on the course.

    The human systems are all just that “human” devices. They exist because we will them into being and than struggle with their imperfections and make up long narratives about one class vs another. It’s not to say that there are not oligarchs, despots, and plutocrats exploiting at every turn. But these are not born strictly out of capitalism. They pre-date capitalism. And socialism is an attempt to counteract, but too frequently sets up a never ending struggle between the haves and have nots. We almost seemed wired for this meaningless struggle, but these are not wired. It is our inability, at times, to see through to the problem because there is a vested interest in keeping the problem going.

  33. Deadbeat said on July 3rd, 2010 at 2:29am #

    In a comment to Deadbeat from another essay I said, “(I) do see capitalism as destructive, (but) simply improving the incentive system and not finding the deeper forces driving our out-of-control relationship with biophysical reality is a ship already missed.”

    That’s cool but you AVOID saying that in your articles. I don’t understand that while the world is in the midst of an extreme Capitalist crisis that you would avoid describing the situation as such. Such an honest description and depiction of Capitalism goes right to your theme of your current article regarding truth and clarity. I point this out because this has been a chronic problem due to the Left’s decades long avoidance of describing these problem as endemic to of the Capitalist system. In fact many writers frame these problems as though they are isolated and atomized issues. This misleads and disservice their readers by making these issues appear disjointed, disconnected and individualized.

    I am not saying that socialism is an extension of capitalism, rather that some of the economic incentives would be improved. But the deeper incentives to produce and consume excessively are not necessarily improved by moving from a capitalist social economic model to a socialist economic model

    Your notion that Socialism relates to excessive consumption is incorrect and seeks to conflate CAPITALIST production with Socialism. That SIR is an incorrect ASSUMPTION and why I criticized your aforementioned framing of Socialism. This seems to be a chronic misunderstanding common among “environmentalists” who claim to be against “industrialization” yet still desire to maintain the private property relations and the modern comforts derived from technology. Socialists on the other hand seeks to APPROPRIATE modern technology and comforts to place them for the benefits of all.

    Perhaps it is your lack of understanding of Socialism is why you avoid mentioning Socialism. That is understandable. I would suggest improving your understanding of Socialism because the one person who seem to speaking most about Socialism is Glenn Beck primarily as the Left seems to be abandoning the fight for Socialism.

  34. Deadbeat said on July 3rd, 2010 at 2:40am #

    Max Shields writes …

    The human systems … pre-date capitalism. And socialism is an attempt to counteract, but too frequently sets up a never ending struggle between the haves and have nots. We almost seemed wired for this meaningless struggle, but these are not wired. It is our inability, at times, to see through to the problem because there is a vested interest in keeping the problem going.

    This is 2010 Max and you’ll need a time machine (Oh no! technology) and fight Feudalism which pre-dates Capitalism. I’m sorry to break the news to you Max but Capitalism is the current system and it is the struggle of this epoch.

    But I understand Max that you have trouble identifying epochal struggles. It is the same difficulty you have when you incorrectly describe and attribute the current Middle East policy as “U.S. Imperialism” due to past epochal influences which are clearly different from today’s epochal influences.

  35. Max Shields said on July 3rd, 2010 at 7:58am #

    Actually I don’t think this is “capitalism” per se though we refer to it as such just as we refer to our finance system as the “economy. Both are clearly adrift and have created an immoral system of exploitation as they’ve grown particularly due to the industrial revolution which detached humans from their work and created efficient machinary to concentrate wealth into the hands of a few growing monopolies. But this is a distortion of incredible magnitude.

    We see this distortion everywhere. The “struggle” has to do with the corruption of nature as primary, land use as secondary, manufacturing (which has been largely outsourced and off-shored) and than consumption. The corruption begins with an “economics” based primarily on finance and money for nothing and flipping around the order whereby consumerism drives the engine with commoditized use of nature and all its gifts.

    The alienation of man from his work, the struggle is found in this topseyturvey view and the reduction of economics (central to quality of life) to high finance which is the destruction of life.

    We can daddle about capitalism but in the end, the real issues are deeper than a label.

  36. Max Shields said on July 3rd, 2010 at 9:08am #

    Deadbeat not sure if you’ll get the points Mr. Keyes is making because the struggle is within your paradigm that forbades entry of what he (and to some extent I) have been trying to postulate. These points, however, are not academic or high concept notions of ideology. They are on-the-ground perspectives, local and human scale that Keye’s is attempting to articulate.

    The problem with ideological templates (even when revised to incorporate a 21st Century of thinking) cut off basic priniciples that deprive one from anything but replacement without fundamental transformation. So you can argue that socialism is green or that it would reduce the ever destructive nature of industrialism, but you don’t need “socialist” dictums to transform to a more moral economics embracing economic justice. Understanding the problem, not simply as “Capitalism” but as the conditions around which we’ve built these civilizations, the utter exploitation of nature to an end that ultimately serves a few, is essential. “Socialism” is a word with many meanings and thus illusive.

    Illusive cures are dangerous; as we’ve seen (and as Mr. Keyes has noted) with religion.

  37. Hue Longer said on July 3rd, 2010 at 12:34pm #

    I think it was Jack London who in his socialist circle didn’t understand why the machines needed to go and called for their continued use for the benefit of everyone’s comfort. This of course begs how they would continue to be produced.

    DB, do you see yourself scoring a Lexus when socialism begins?

  38. teafoe2 said on July 3rd, 2010 at 12:36pm #

    Hilarious, if it wasn’t so sad. Deadbeat nailed it:
    “…your…framing of Socialism…seems to be a chronic misunderstanding common among “environmentalists” who claim to be against “industrialization” yet still desire to maintain the private property relations and the modern comforts derived from technology.”

    If you want to change the current system and replace it with something more in accord with the needs of organic life on earth and human aspirations, you have to begin by developing a description of the current reality. Which is that there is a structure, a social configuration, which serves the interests and does the bidding of a small segment of the human population. The cornerstone of this structure is the sanctity of Private Property. Which is a concept native to the Capitalist era.
    The “Glorious Revolution” in glorious England climaxed the process which had been making progress during preceding centuries, and made Private Property the basis of the British legal system, overturning the legal primacy of Feudal relations.
    The American Republic and US Constitution were based on the sanctity of Private Property from the outset. Which meant that everything including land, labor, and human beings could legally be bought and sold, as long as the seller possessed Legal Title to same.
    Which also means that he who has legal title to the means of distributing information is free to control what is distributed.

    “Socialism” is a word which refers to an IDEA, the idea of abolishing the dominance of human society by the idea of Private Property.

    Those who babble about Class Struggle being a relic of a previous time are serving the purposes of the Oppressing Classes and configurations. Class Struggle is going on now, today. From Gaza to the Lacondon to the upper Amazon to Detroit to AfPak to P.I. to P.R to the US Gulag, what Rudyard Kipling called “War, War, Bloody War, North-East-South and West” continues. Only those with there eyes firmly fixed on their own navels and their noses thrust heavenward fail to see it.

    Wake up, dummies.

  39. Don Hawkins said on July 3rd, 2010 at 2:31pm #

    Oh yes good and evil and the in between we had better figure out this little energy problem or we just might not answer those questions. All dressed in the finest clothes and gold and diamonds and the talk is of the little people wait do you hear that that laughter off in the distence it seems to be getting louder.

  40. Max Shields said on July 3rd, 2010 at 2:58pm #

    teafoe2 Your quote from Deadbeat describes a narrow-mindedness that argues through connections never through common sense, particular values or basic principles.

    For someone to make the argument that industrialisation and environmentalists (whatever that bull shit is) somehow desire so-called modern comforts from technology…blah blah blah, is imagine a world where some creatures called “environmentalists” exist and demand their I-Pod or is it P-Pod? It is the logic of Lewis Carol on LSD. It is the same fiction that rails against “Leftist” creatures who could be anyone from Obama to Chavez….the mind is left to wander and wonder.

    So, I’m so glad you so the nail (perhaps in the coffin) teafoe2…it’s all in the eye of the beholder.

  41. Don Hawkins said on July 3rd, 2010 at 3:06pm #

    Nothing new under the Sun we just might want to rethink that one under the Sun as in a few years boring this will not be. I have questions is Fox New’s fair and balanced did human’s walk with the dinosaurs is the Earth 6 thousand years old is Obama a Socialist was oil made from dinosaurs was coal made from dinosaurs is the moon made of green cheese if you drink the same kind of alcohol you will never get drunk or just beer is there more than one Universe or the wrong way to look at it is there a God is there more than one God is God a he or a she can human’s go backwards in time ever look at the Stars or the Sun I can’t see I can’t see this to shall pass. Little beams of light eight minutes blasphemy go shopping.

  42. Don Hawkins said on July 3rd, 2010 at 4:22pm #

    Oh man am in trouble now well come to think of it I think we are all in deep do do. How’s the oil spill it’s only a mile down no pressure and BP the friends of man are on the job and Tony where did he go and why would anybody name a boat Bob strange. Are we making any progress on the money supply or how’s the old cap and trade bill coming along. No new tax’s let’s all join the new and improved tea party. We could tax carbon and return the tax back to the people no much to simple and a few very few I don’t think like that idea. What’s a double dip I’ll bet human’s made this up.

  43. Don Hawkins said on July 3rd, 2010 at 5:06pm #

    Time to tell the truth and what is the truth? Red is grey and yellow white and they decide which is right and which is an illusion? I mean talk about get cared away with one’s self. Fill that glass sir can’t you see am talking where do they find these people? He used to work on Wall Street it’s a long sad story they say you can find him late at night on Wall Street dressed in a suit singing over and over,

    See it with your eyes;
    Earth re-energized
    By the sun’s rays every day.
    Take a look out there,
    Planets everywhere.

    He’s coming back be nice he’s always’ on time never misses a day.

  44. Deadbeat said on July 3rd, 2010 at 11:57pm #

    Hue Longer writes …

    DB, do you see yourself scoring a Lexus when socialism begins?

    No Hue, I see myself riding around in a Bentley.

  45. Deadbeat said on July 4th, 2010 at 12:07am #

    Oops I also forgot to add with a Cuban cigar.

  46. Deadbeat said on July 4th, 2010 at 12:24am #

    Teafoe2 writes …

    If you want to change the current system and replace it with something more in accord with the needs of organic life on earth and human aspirations, you have to begin by developing a description of the current reality

    Teafoe2 puts it succinctly and why I won’t waste my time responding to Mr. Shields. Mr. Shields arguments is representative of the Left’s failure to identify and speak clearly and truthfully about the current reality (of the Capitalist system) and is a major reason why the Left is totally impotent to confront the current crisis. The impotence of the Left due to its corruption by both Zionism, Capitalism, and “middle class” tendencies is why we’ve seen the rise of “Tea Party” politics. The formation of the Tea Party was completely infantile and that is why it was so easily co-opted by the Glen Becks and Sarah Palins.

  47. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 4:22am #

    http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/goes/east/carb/rb-l.jpg

    Well look’s like a little more than firework’s on the way this day in old twenty ten. I watched people on the beach in the Gulf playing in the oil on CNN this morning, Johnnie don’t step on the tar ball’s and don’t pick up any dead fish, PR. I see they have a large ship the big skimmer the answer and the moon is made of green cheese. Mr. President you have to tell the American people we will have to blow it up. About a 30K should do the trick not much radiation tell them it’s a trade off, PR. Oh and people on the Gulf we will set up camps inland we could call them motel Hell just kidding sort of reeducation camps. Sir we have to go tee time is in one hour. O beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of crude. Is this football or baseball season, oh look Johnnie is making a tar ball castle what a kid he got that from you.

    Castle
    A fortified residence, especially that of a prince or nobleman; a fortress.

    Next year let’s go to the Arctic and Johnnie can watch the glaciers melt and crash into the ocean. Hay am tired of farming and doing floors maybe I can work in a PR firm.

  48. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 5:44am #

    Just walked the dog’s and the old GM dealer that has now been closed three years well there are vines growing up the front. Last year they cut them not this year. Now it’s to bad that building this very day could be changing over farm machinery over to natural gas yes you have to use your mind and at the same time tax carbon return that tax back to the people and let’s not forget research on a grand scale along with some very large project’s like mass transit low loss power lines and here’s a big one conservation a little cut back on all we do. Now some will not like that last idea, ok.

  49. Max Shields said on July 4th, 2010 at 9:30am #

    Deadbeat you’re lapses into delusion are humorously benign. As mentioned, getting it requires rethinking your old wasted dogma and extreme abstractionism. To you there’s a world of abstract groupings, faceless, with but a few names to use as temporary guideposts…you breath air and eat what is grown from the earth, and yet you call some group “environmentalists” as if there is a clique somewhere who uniformally represent the biosphere and ecosystems on the planet while holding onto the technology of endless growth and destruction. But how does one connect this contradiction you cling to? You probably think these nameless, faceless beings are Chomskyites…or would find some Zionist common ground. One can only imagine.

    It’s a made up narrative; a Rocharch test in the hands of the uninitiated. A blot of words hoping something will stick. Chom…sky + Zion…ism + Le…ft and Soc..ial…ism + Marx…ist + Rac…ism and whip it up into a batch of alphabet soup… toss it in the air…and type it out and voila!!!! The magic of synapses, neuron to dendrite to dendrite to neuron in sparks of excitement and formed…is an incoherent Escher sketching, a stair way to nowhere.

  50. teafoe2 said on July 4th, 2010 at 12:19pm #

    Max Shields shields himself from truths he finds unpleasant by throwing up smokescreens of confusion. Why simple facts accepted by all sides in contemporary political and academic debate frighten Mr Shields so much is puzzling, since by rejecting them he closes out any real possibility of participation in the collective effort to change conditions to something closer to what he claims he wants. Attempting to wig out Mr S’s personal psychological quirks seems not too promising, but it is pretty simple to penetrate the smokescreens & dispel the confusion.

    Example one: “The human systems are all just that, “human” devices. They exist because we will them into being…”
    “WE”? Who the hell is “we”?

    Slapsie Maxie, I got news for you: this fucking capitalist system was IMPOSED on us. It is kept in place by the capitalist State, which now has evolved into a global system. A multi-tentacled, many faceted system exhibiting three main subsystems: political, economic/financial, and ideological.

    It will probably come as shock to good ol’ Max, but his writings on this site over the last couple of years clearly show that on balance, his writing activity is a very minor component of the Capitalist Ideological State Apparatus. (cf. Althusser & Balibar).

    In his defense we must also note his praiseworthy remarks about Zionism, the I/P & ME issues. How he is able to maintain a separation in his mind between Zionism and the Capitalist context in which it arose, which formed the prerequisite for its emergence and and persistence…well it baffles me, but since I’m neither a shrink or a clairvoyant I’ll have to let somebody else explain that one.

    Something else I CAN explain, or at least dissect:
    Max Shields said on July 1st, 2010 at 5:05pm

    “The problem with this talk of Capitalism and Socialism is the very notion of production and distribution. Where is the question: To what end? What is a job? Why must we create them? Why do we produce things we don’t need by people who we call workers and produce nothing of value and take their lives and nature and toss it all into the mix?”

    Let’s take this nonsense step by step: “The problem with this talk of Capitalism and Socialism is the very notion of production and distribution. Where is the question: To what end?”

    Astounding, no? That an individual capable of displaying such astounding ignorance of basic facts presumes himself capable of propounding about “Capitalism & Socialism”?

    Okay Maxie, let me try to break it down so even you can understand it: in the currently dominant Capitalist Mode of Production — oh, no, that term is too technical, assumes some education — in a society ordered by Capitalist laws and principles, Production and Distribution is carried on for the end of Making a Profit. In the absence of a perceived opportunity for a capitalist to make a profit, production and with it distribution grind to a halt.
    “What is a job? Why must we create them?”

    Again, who the fuck is “WE”? Actually, Max’s use of the plural first person says a great deal to me about his state of mind. It tells me that he identifies with, considers himself one of, the class of people who make societal decisions. Yes it’s an Ad Hominem argument, but anyone who thinks Max may be making sense should keep it in mind.
    In this kind of society, i.e. under Capitalism, jobs are created by Capitalists for capitalist ends. Sometimes by governments run by Capitalists for capitalist ends.

    “Why do we produce things we don’t need by people who we call workers and produce nothing of value and take their lives and nature and toss it all into the mix?”

    Again the telltale “we”. “Nothing of value” is an exaggeration, and an oversimplification since much of what’s produced actually has negative value, but let it stand. Let’s attend instead to Max’s assumption that “we” take workers lives and nature & toss “it” all in the “mix”.
    Max wants us to believe that “we” are all equally responsible for the current deplorable state of affairs, for the “corruption of nature”. Does he believe in the fable of Pluralist Democracy?
    In this society, a relatively small fraction of the population makes all the major decisions, then sells them to the broader public via the Ideological State Apparatus, i.e. the schools, churches, & “entertainment industry” which prepare the mind to accept more particularly focussed snowjobs like the “War On Terror”, war on drugs, swineflu epidemic etc etc.

    If we want to change the kinds of decisions that are made, we have to change the kind of people making them. We have to make it impossible for private wealth to influence the kind of information made available. Make it impossible for private wealth or considerations of private profit to influence the choice of persons given responsibility for making decisions which impact the public.

    The first step is to abolish the sanctity of Private Property, abolish it in all the forms it takes, whether in real estate, plant and equipment, financial instruments, inside knowledge or any other form.
    The Public, excluding the just or about-to-be expropriated Capitalist Class, must act as a unified Power and pre-empt the possibility of any group setting itself up as a power configuration able to act independently of the overall public interest. This presents a lot of problems. You could even call it a problematic notion. But it must be accomplished. The question is HOW.
    It is this question which demands attention.

  51. Max Shields said on July 4th, 2010 at 12:43pm #

    teafoe2: “The human systems are all just that, “human” devices. They exist because we will them into being…”
    “WE”? Who the hell is “we”?

    Max’s response: It would seem your question is answered in the statement you quote.

    Here’s another one by teafoe2: “Let’s take this nonsense step by step: “The problem with this talk of Capitalism and Socialism is the very notion of production and distribution. Where is the question: To what end?”

    Astounding, no? That an individual capable of displaying such astounding ignorance of basic facts presumes himself capable of propounding about “Capitalism & Socialism”?”

    Max’s response: His argument “Astounding, no”. Deadbeat said you were succint. No sir you are verbose because your arguments are based on an hperbolic assumption: that a reader would see what you think is obvious. Of course as a expounder of a vague ideology you actually think that what you state is obvious when it is just flakey word games (by the way, my last post was an ironic twist on the emptiness of Deadbeat’s “thinking”, and you seem to be following suit – me almost thinks you are Deadbeat).

    By the way teafoe2, who are the people you’d have replace what we have?

  52. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 3:05pm #

    Carcosa is a fictional city in the Ambrose Bierce short story “An Inhabitant of Carcosa” (1891). In Bierce’s story, the ancient and mysterious city is barely described, and is viewed only in hindsight (after its destruction) by a character who once lived there

    The King in Yellow
    The city was later used more extensively in Robert W. Chambers’ book of horror short stories published in 1895 entitled The King in Yellow. Chambers had read Bierce’s work and had also borrowed a few other names (including Hali and Hastur) from Bierce’s work.
    In Chambers’ stories, and within the apocryphal play (also titled The King in Yellow) which is mentioned several times within them, the city is a mysterious, ancient, and possibly cursed place. The most precise description of its location given is that it said to be located on the shores of Lake Hali in the Hyades. The descriptions given of it, however, make it clear that it must be located on another planet, or possibly even in another universe.
    For instance:
    Along the shore the cloud waves break,
    The twin suns sink behind the lake,
    The shadows lengthen
    In Carcosa.
    Strange is the night where black stars rise,
    And strange moons circle through the skies,
    But stranger still is
    Lost Carcosa.
    Songs that the Hyades shall sing,
    Where flap the tatters of the King,
    Must die unheard in
    Dim Carcosa.
    Song of my soul, my voice is dead,
    Die thou, unsung, as tears unshed
    Shall dry and die in
    Lost Carcosa.
    —”Cassilda’s Song” in The King in Yellow Act 1, Scene 2 Wiki

  53. Deadbeat said on July 4th, 2010 at 3:15pm #

    Teafoe2 writes …

    Slapsie Maxie, I got news for you: this fucking capitalist system was IMPOSED on us. It is kept in place by the capitalist State, which now has evolved into a global system. A multi-tentacled, many faceted system exhibiting three main subsystems: political, economic/financial, and ideological.

    Again Teafoe2 is concise in his arguments. The system was IMPOSED on humans not the other way around. Authors who speaks of the Capitalist system in terms of “humanity” are apologists, indoctrinated, confused, or deceitful.

    Which brings me back to Mr. Keyes excellent observation …

    And yet we are supposed to give such failures of education, comprehension and curiosity the standing of a fully developed and worthy system of thought. It is quite simply ridiculous: it is foolish to listen to the opinion of someone who doesn’t know where the shortstop should position for a left-handed hitter who routinely pulls toward right field or who would put a player 3rd in the batting rotation who has a 250 average. My uncle would have just said it, “Shut up! You don’t know your ass from second base.”

  54. Max Shields said on July 4th, 2010 at 4:14pm #

    Deadbeat you are truly funny. Mr. Keyes in a nice way has put you down and then you proceed to make it seem as if he agrees with you (“Which brings me back to Mr. Keyes excellent observation …”).

    You are a funny little “man”.

  55. Max Shields said on July 4th, 2010 at 4:25pm #

    Teafoe2 what have you done to change the conditions of the Capitalist State? I mean something beyond your prattle here? Just one or two…come now you must have done something…no. Like deadbeat you haven’t done a thing except make up a little story you tell yourself and pretend that you’re part of a vanguard of some sort. You think because you toss words like socialism around that you are a believable change agent. You call yourself “teafoe” as if that has some meaning for your life, like my reason for being is to be a foe of the teaparty or some nutty thing. You two are like the infiltrators into a rally…all yelping and yelling to stir the crowd….

  56. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 5:35pm #

    DB ever read any of this………….

    http://www.wcpa.biz/english/constitution/earth_constitution_executive_summary.html

    1. Broad functions of Earth Federation are the following:
    1.1. to prevent war; 1.2. to protect universal human rights; 1.3. to end poverty; 1.4. to regulate international processes; 1.5. to protect the environment and ecological fabric of life, that is, the biosphere; and 1.6. to devise solutions to world problems beyond the capacity of national governments.

  57. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 5:43pm #

    PREAMBLE
    Realizing that Humanity today has come to a turning point in history and that we are on the threshold of an new world order which promises to usher in an era of peace, prosperity, justice and harmony;
    Aware of the interdependence of people, nations and all life;
    Aware that man’s abuse of science and technology has brought Humanity to the brink of disaster through the production of horrendous weaponry of mass destruction and to the brink of ecological and social catastrophe;
    Aware that the traditional concept of security through military defense is a total illusion both for the present and for the future;
    Aware of the misery and conflicts caused by ever increasing disparity between rich and poor;
    Conscious of our obligation to posterity to save Humanity from imminent and total annihilation;
    Conscious that Humanity is One despite the existence of diverse nations, races, creeds, ideologies and cultures and that the principle of unity in diversity is the basis for a new age when war shall be outlawed and peace prevail; when the earth’s total resources shall be equitably used for human welfare; and when basic human rights and responsibilities shall be shared by all without discrimination;
    Conscious of the inescapable reality that the greatest hope for the survival of life on earth is the establishment of a democratic worldgovernment;
    We, citizens of the world, hereby resolve to establish a world federation to be governed in accordance with this constitution for the Federation of Earth

  58. Don Hawkins said on July 4th, 2010 at 6:25pm #

    And to the brink of ecological and social catastrophe

    Real time
    http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/goes/east/carb/rb-l.jpg

  59. teafoe2 said on July 4th, 2010 at 6:53pm #

    Apparently something I said got Maxie upset, since he’s stopped offering nonsense psuedo-analyses and resorted to mindreading.

    “Assume Nothing”, Mr Shields. You have no knowledge of what I may or not have done outside this forum, so don’t try to pretend that you know one way or another.

    I could provide references if I thought it would be appropriate, but what would be the point? Many people with great records of Left or/and “Green” activity still cling to false ideas about what’s going on. So I prefer to let my arguments stand or fall on their internal coherence and correspondence with observable fact.
    Do you, Mr Shields, dispute my assertion that the Capitalist system of social relationships in the course of production and distribution of the material necessities of human life has been imposed by force, violence and deceit?

    It is YOU, Mr Shields, who is tossing words around. Did I not offer an explanation of the core meaning of the word “socialism”? If you think my exegesis inadequate, why don’t you correct me? If you have a better one to offer, be my guest. Nobody’s purfekt, & I certainly don’t pretend to know everything, so if you know better than me, by all means pull my coat?
    Yes, yes, by all means, please do explain what “socialism” means to you? Why its appearance on the page disturbs you so?

    I suspect that it is because the prospect of the abolition of Private Property is for you a frightening one. If my suspicion is incorrect, please enlighten us? Is it true that you would have nothing to lose personally if a movement based on the propertyless classes was to come to power in the USA?
    Scrolling down a bit, we find you posted this on July 4th, 2010 at 4:25pm: “You call yourself “teafoe” as if that has some meaning for your life, like my reason for being is to be a foe of the teaparty or some nutty thing.”

    The curious grammar of your curious sentence took me a while to figure out, but assuming I have correctly grasped your intent (?), do you truly believe that opposing the “teaparty” is “some nutty thing”?

    BTW, what is it that caused you to jump to the false conclusion that my choice of nom-de-troll had anything to do with you? Maybe you’re not old enough to remember the once-popular tune “Tea For Two”? Strange that you’ve never come across it in TV reruns… Don’t you like Ginger Rogers?

    Are you suggesting that opposition to the Tea Party movement and the racist ideology at its core is an unworthy endeavor? Are you a Teabagger yourself? Is that why you are at such pains to project confusion into the discussion on this website? If not, just say so. I’m just asking because I’m finding it hard to avoid drawing that conclusion.
    As far as I’m concerned the emergence of this Tea Bag business onto the political scene is an extremely dangerous development, one reminiscent of the emergence of the National Socialist Deutsche Arbeiter Partei. Do you disagree? If so, please explain why?

    Jumping back to the essential point at issue: you said at at 12:43pm… no wait, let me post this much, and continue in a moment…

  60. teafoe2 said on July 4th, 2010 at 7:14pm #

    at 12:43pm Mr Max Shields posted a sentence from which I excerpt the following: “…you haven’t done a thing except make up a little story…”.

    So tell me, Mr Max — I’m not disputing your claim to be able to read my mind at a distance, or that you’ve been able to access my FBI file — but do tell me, do you really believe the imposition of capitalism, of the capitalist legal system, of the capitalist concept of private property, is a little story I made up all by myself? Do you really mean to assert that the recorded history of Primitive Accumulation, of post-Columbian colonial conquest and enslavement, of the Enclosure Movement, of the Opium War, of the Atlantic Slave trade, to note only a few major events in the bloody history of the capitalist mode of production, that all this is “a little story (I) made up”?
    Or that all these events were brought about by Society As a Whole, acting in accord with a consensus reached via wholly democratic processes?
    Well, let’s see what absurdity Max comes up with next:)

  61. teafoe2 said on July 4th, 2010 at 7:37pm #

    Max fires a parting shot: “By the way teafoe2, who are the people you’d have replace what we have?”

    Well Max, just in reference to the USA I’d start with James Petras, Cynthia McKinney, Glen Ford, Jeff Blankfort, Phillip Weiss, Margaret Kimberley, Gladys Cespedes, Bruce Dixon, Mary Ratcliff, “our own” Kim Petersen, Hatem Bazian, just off the top of my head. I think this group could be trusted to set up a democratic process via which to select a more representative body to determine the next step. Of course there are others whose names didn’t come to mind immediately; I’m open to suggestions.
    There is a dialectic between the need for representation of the popular will, and the need for qualified leadership. Between the need for the fullest expression of the democratic principle, and the need to prevent “social democrats” and other capitalist stooges in sheep’s clothing from taking over the movement to construct an alternative system of social cooperation.

    But many more sophisticated minds than mine have wrestled with these problems. Robert Jensen of the U of Texas is one, Michael Lebowitz is another. The Louis Proyect website is a good place to find links and citations, as is the Mondoweiss page.

  62. lichen said on July 4th, 2010 at 7:38pm #

    Max is right–the insane anti-environmentalism and overall blind ideological ignorance displayed by some here is gross. You cannot think outside your own little box, cannot comprehend or respect the independent left who combine struggles and don’t feel the need to conform to outdated ideology. Right wing earth-killing marxism is not an answer; it too will implode. That DB venerates the verbal/emotional abuse and lack of communication skills of his uncle is highly indicative of his own character. End of story.

  63. teafoe2 said on July 4th, 2010 at 8:44pm #

    Mr Lichen, since your angry outburst follows my own posts critical of Max Shields views, am I correct to assume that you intend to target myself and my comments along with Deadbeat and his views?
    Deadbeat seems capable of defending his views himself, so if you didn’t mean to attack what I just got through telling Max, I’ll stay out of it.

    However I wonder what you mean by “outdated ideology”? Do you mean it is outdated to notice that capitalists need to make profits and accumulate more capital, on pain of being driven to bankruptcy and swallowed up by bigger and more successful capitalists?
    Are you saying that the Profit Motive is outdated? Do you mean that Businessmen and Business women nowadays ARE
    “in business for their health”?

    And who are some of the leaders of this “independent left” you mention? I hope you don’t have in mind any of the pseudo “Left” figures/outfits who use erudite “marxist” analysis to justify support for the Democratic Party? Who encouraged members of the “progressive” movements to jump on the Obama bandwagon? Who continue to peddle the Two State Illusion, the fantasy that “given goodwill on all sides”, a negotiated solution to the I/P problem will sooner or later be achieved, we just have to show a little patience?
    I hope you aren’t one of those who contends that “the state of isreal has a right to exist”?

    I’ll let Deadbeat speak for himself, but all I’m asking Max for is that he be consistent in argument. That he be logical, rational, and not try to substitute unfounded assertion and namecalling for rational argument. I mean I don’t mind a little invective if it’s imaginative enough to be entertaining, but without a semblance of a rational peg to hang it on it falls flat.

  64. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 2:37am #

    http://www.wunderground.com/tropical/tracking/at201096_model.html

    Here we go again battling the elements for the elements and the winner is………………..

  65. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 2:50am #

    Is this what a few are so worried about. Number three as we head for the Stars ET phone home.

    The inhabitants and citizens of Earth who are within the Federation of Earth shall have certain inalienable rights defined hereunder. It shall be mandatory for the World Parliament, the World Executive, and all organs and agencies of the World Government to honor, implement and enforce these rights, as well as for the national governments of all member nations in the Federation of Earth to do likewise. Individuals or groups suffering violation or neglect of such rightst shall have full recourse through the World Ombudsmus, the Enforcement System and the World Courts for redress of grievances. The inalienable rights shall include the following:

    Equal rights for all citizens of the Federation of Earth, with no discrimination on grounds of race, color, caste, nationality, sex, religion, political affiliation, property, or social status.
    Equal protection and application of world legislation and world laws for all citizens of the Federation of Earth.
    Freedom of thought and conscience, speech, press, writing, communication, expression, publication, broadcasting, telecasting, and cinema, except as an overt part of or incitement to violence, armed riot or insurrection. Number three
    Freedom of assembly, association, organization, petition and peaceful demonstration.
    Freedom to vote without duress, and freedom for political organization and campaigning without censorship or recrimination.
    Freedom to profess, practice and promote religious or religious beliefs or no religion or religious belief.
    Freedom to profess and promote political beliefs or no political beliefs.
    Freedom for investigation, research and reporting.
    Freedom to travel without passport or visas or other forms of registration used to limit travel between, among or within nations.
    Prohibition against slavery, peonage, involuntary servitude, and conscription of labor.
    Prohibition against military conscription.
    Safety of person from arbitrary or unreasonable arrest, detention, exile, search or seizure; requirement of warrants for searches and arrests.
    Prohibition against physical or psychological duress or torture during any period of investigation, arrest, detention or imprisonment, and against cruel or unusual punishment.
    Right of habeous corpus; no ex-post-facto laws; no double jeopardy; right to refuse self-incrimination or the incrimination of another.
    Prohibition against private armies and paramilitary organizations as being threats to the common peace and safety.
    Safety of property from arbitrary seizure; protection against exercise of the power of eminent domain without reasonable compensation.
    Right to family planning and free public assistance to achieve family planning objectives.
    Right of privacy of person, family and association; prohibition against surveillance as a means of political control.

  66. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 2:59am #

    Most precious element on Earth:
    Beside a crystalline isometric polymorph of carbon (diamonds), the most precious element on earth is CLEAN water.

    Intelligent Visitors from Outer Space:
    Infrequently

    http://www.nationsonline.org/oneworld/earth.htm

  67. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 3:14am #

    In the first world any oppressed or underprivileged victim of a state and just who or what is this so called State if we look behind the curtain

    The Fourth World has also been used to designate:
    the poorest, and most undeveloped states of the world;
    any oppressed or underprivileged victim of a state

  68. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 3:51am #

    Let’s see the great minds of our time so called leaders at least here in the States will be back in session tomorrow and on the agenda will be unemployment benefits and I guess cap and trade or did they change that name as now we need a watered down bill it’s the best they can do. Again ET phone home and don’t forget those boot’s as the call may take a few light years in spacetime or another way of looking at it is spaced out man. Boring this will not be and that’s a for sure dude.

  69. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 4:34am #

    Don Hawkins writes …

    DB ever read any of this…………. http://www.wcpa.biz/english/constitution/earth_constitution_executive_summary.html

    Don thanks for the link. I just skimmed the material and didn’t give it a deep read. But I will later. I’m sure there are part that I agree with, parts that I’m not sure I agree with or can see where some problems could arise but I thank you for at least understanding that there need to be radical reconfigurations and challenging the property relations.

    I think the biggest problem is getting everyone to understand that the Capitalist system does not work in the best interest of humans and the environment. We in the West has been indoctrinated to “love our masters” which is why you have these deep debates and disagreements regarding Capitalism. And as you remind us there not enough time to continue squabbling . Folks are going to have to shit or get of the pot.

  70. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:12am #

    teafoe2 writes …

    As far as I’m concerned the emergence of this Tea Bag business onto the political scene is an extremely dangerous development, one reminiscent of the emergence of the National Socialist Deutsche Arbeiter Partei. Do you disagree? If so, please explain why?

    Here’s my thoughts on the Tea Party. At first I thought it was a creation of Fox News but after reading Petras latest article and because my lack of trust in the Left I’ve had a rethink.

    I think the original formation of the Tea Party was a response to the bank bailout to the tune of 12 trillion dollars or $40,000 per citizen!
    There needed to be response however the response was infantile meaning that it lack a real Marxist basis. That lack of a Marxist basis is directly related to the Left failure during the past 40 years to defend Socialism.

    There was a great critique of the ISO by WSWS that speaks to the “middle class” nature of its politics.

    Part 1: The ISO and the American middle-class left

    Part 2: The ISO and the American middle-class left

    While I don’t fully agree with the critique I think WSWS raises an important problem about the Left that has caused the Left to withdraw from Marxism — the “middle class” tendency.

    The “middle-class” tendency is why you get the perspective that is being touted by Mr. Shields and Mr. Keyes and why they fail to critique the Capitalist system. This VACUUM is why you have the emergence of the Tea Party who undeveloped political critiques are full of contradictions that leaves them vulnerable to being co-opted by the Glen Becks and Sarah Palins. IMO the co-opting of the Tea Party by the opportunistic Right-wing that will steer them in a fascist direction is the real danger rather than the Tea Party itself. The Left bears a great deal of responsibility for this outcome and IMO welcomes the opportunistic Right in order for the Left to scare progressives and especially people of color in order to give the illusion of alliance. In the end however the Left remains weak and impotent and the working class remains divided and played like fools.

  71. mary said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:15am #

    Don Hawkins. I think less is more. You have posted half of the comments in the left hand column. You message has come over loud and clear by now.

  72. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:22am #

    teafoe2 writes …

    Well, let’s see what absurdity Max comes up with next:)

    The serious of Mr. Shields is again a reflection of the lack of defense of Socialist ideas by the Left over the past 40 years. This is the net effect of Chomskyism who the Left anointed as its intellectual leader. People thought they were getting an education from Chomsky when in reality what they were hearing were axioms that was presented in a vacuum due to the withdrawal from Marxist perspectives by the Left.

    Max’s rhetoric sound absurd when placed in a Marxist perspective but unfortunately it is not so absurd when placed in the Middle-class Chomskyite context. This is why we have Tea Parties, Coffee Parties, and a middle class health care “movement” all doomed to failure.

    Max may be pesky but his perspectives unfortunately represent mainstream Chomskyism.

  73. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:30am #

    lichen writes…

    Right wing earth-killing marxism is not an answer; it too will implode. That DB venerates the verbal/emotional abuse and lack of communication skills of his uncle is highly indicative of his own character. End of story.

    “Right wing earth-killing marxism” You mean like the United States? When did the USA become Marxist lichen?

    Now perhaps you mean the elitist environmentalists who support the Capitalist property relations and the technological comforts like the computer you used to type your ridiculous ad hominem attack. If you are such an “environmentalist”" you would never be on the Internet since it was created by the Department of Defense (DARPA). And computers lichen? You own one right? Of course you do? What kind lichen a laptop? a PC, a Mac? You can tell us. Don’t be embarrassed lichen. We won’t call you a hypocrite.

  74. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:38am #

    lichen writes …

    You cannot think outside your own little box, cannot comprehend or respect the independent left who combine struggles and don’t feel the need to conform to outdated ideology

    Again this statement is reflective of middle class Chomskyite ideology caused by the Left embrace of the private property relationship and the creature comforts of the living in Capitalist USA whereby elitist “environmentalists” have the leisure to contemplate their navel thereby rejecting working class Marxist analysis.

    Marxism is not outdated. Marxism is very relevant and its relevancy is being seen every day as more people standard of living declines as unemployment rises, as wealth continues to concentrate, as the environment continue to get polluted, and as POWER continue to collect in the hands of the Capitalist class.

    The ad hominem of Marxism being “outdated” has been the unfortunate and dominate rhetoric of the middle-class Chomskyites.

  75. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:40am #

    teafoe2 writes …

    And who are some of the leaders of this “independent left” you mention? I hope you don’t have in mind any of the pseudo “Left” figures/outfits who use erudite “marxist” analysis to justify support for the Democratic Party? Who encouraged members of the “progressive” movements to jump on the Obama bandwagon? Who continue to peddle the Two State Illusion, the fantasy that “given goodwill on all sides”, a negotiated solution to the I/P problem will sooner or later be achieved, we just have to show a little patience?
    I hope you aren’t one of those who contends that “the state of isreal has a right to exist”?

    The answer … Chomskyites.

  76. Don Hawkins said on July 5th, 2010 at 6:08am #

    Ok Mary just one more a true story. My Son has a small farm blueberries and the price from the middleman is like way down. So my wife said ok let’s pick the berries and sell them ourselves in the city the hell with the middle man she watch’s CNBC. This last time as she was off to the city she got back and the shit started. Money and who get’s it now the wife it was her idea and did pick most of the berries as my Son has another job because of the middle man. Oh we did have two other people who helped pick so we need to add that to the mix. Yesterday the Son and his wife and my wife got into it. I listened for 15 minutes then did a little rant so to speak. “Have you even heard of Socialism this is now a Socialist farm, first of all it was your mothers idea and she made it happen yes to each his need and you all spent all year growing the berries. The two people who helped pick got fair money and your mother was just testing you, you failed you all don’t need a farm go work on Wall Street for the Capitalists the middle men and women yes give them your money so they can go golfing. We work together here on the Socialists farm. To each his need and your mother and I were going to go to Cancun but another hurricane appears to be coming and then the Gulf was our second choice but your need is greater so you pay the two that helped and be wise with the money. Your mother and I are going fishing and if you don’t like telling people you now have a Socialists farm just say you work together”. Build the motor or at least hope like hell we can build the motor and remember more is not better just more.

  77. James Keye said on July 5th, 2010 at 8:26am #

    I claim innocence for the subsequent argument and ask only that my views be represented by a fair reading of the original essay.

  78. Max Shields said on July 5th, 2010 at 9:01am #

    I don’t think of myself as a “leftist”; certainly not anything like the wannabe fantacies on socialism that Deadbeat depicts. Deadbeat tries to label posters and package their statements in convenient dismissives. I am not a Chomsky(ite). I think I agree with the recent posts of Mr. Keyes in that it comes from a place I’ve been noting on DV for two – three years. It is an attempt to look at root causes and solutions rather than on ideology.

    The “leaders” teafoe2 lists are commentators I for the most part have agreed with. I don’t think of them as anything other than what they’ve been which is commentators. Lichen and Hue Longer seem to see through Deadbeats mishmash. I don’t speak for them, nor Mr. Keyes.

  79. teafoe2 said on July 5th, 2010 at 2:34pm #

    Mr Shields, do I understand you correctly? Do you really intend to describe Cynthia McKinney as nothing but a “commentator”? Do you really see Petras and Blankfort’s pioneering efforts to expose the Zionist Fifth Column in the US as nothing but “commentary”?

    Time out, I need to take a moment to applaud Don Hawkins for posting that list of top priority values. I agree with every item, thanks again Mr Hawkins.

    Time in again, Miraglo! Miraglo: Max has posted some words I find agreeable… but alas has placed them in a context I can’t accept. “… an attempt to look at root causes and solutions rather than (at) ideology” would get my approval, but in my view does not accurately describe Mr Keye’s often insightful contributions.

    My own assessment of Mr Keye’s writing is that he often comes up with startlingly perceptive descriptions of particular manifestations of the social pathology we are all forced to live with, and also of the ways said pathology induces pathological symptoms and behaviors in individuals/families/groups. He is obviously very knowledgeable in the field of Psychology, also I think in Anthropology and aspects of Sociology. But when he essays to propound about matters in the purview of Political Economy… well I wish he wouldn’t. I wish he’d stick to stuff he knows something about.
    Or else make a real study of the field of Political Economy. Maybe if he really applied his obvious intelligence to it he could make a real contribution. ???

    Tangential observation: it’s interesting that most rich reactionary republicans, central banksters and their pundituted thinktank gunsels have no problem describing the current system as capitalism, in fact they boast about it, praise it as a boon to “mankind”. So why do these “environmentalists” have such a problem calling a shovel a shovel?
    Beats me; I really don’t understand it. I’m pretty sure it has something to do with these person’s location in or/and identification with certain “intermediate” levels in the US socio-economic pyramid. They all seem to see things from a determinedly middleclass perspective.
    It is not in itself a crime to find yourself enjoying middleclass status in Capitalist America. Indeed, some of my best friends are Middleclass:) The question is, what are you going to do with it?
    Politically, members of the “intermediate strata” inevitably find themselves, during periods of social instability and historical flux, faced with an unavoidable dilemma: whether to ally themselves with the class forces occupying the portion of the pyramid above them, or with class forces from lower down.

    For those of us at or near the bottom things are relatively simple: those at the top are the enemy. It’s less easy for us to know what to expect from those in the middle. But when we hear people trying to tell us that the class struggle is “outmoded”, we know they have something in mind other than OUR best interests.

  80. lichen said on July 5th, 2010 at 3:26pm #

    Good luck with your blueberries, Don. You could try selling them at a farmers market or doing a U-pick to get rid of those middling fools.

    Being independent means perhaps you can have a cooperative movement, without celebrity “leaders” for people here to constantly bash. There are “elitist capitalist democrats” in every single category you can name–including in the black community, so it is really stupid to bring up that and think you can win an argument that way. A true environmentalist wants to change the overall system in the world, and therefore would use the internet as a tool to connect with people–because it isn’t just about whether the individual recycles or uses the best light bulbs, but ending the mining of oil, coal, natural gas–but grounding the air planes and stopping the production of stupid junk. And of course I do live a very green lifestyle but choice, to the extent that I don’t feel the need to flesh it out. I’d be quite happy with the bare minimum-no electricity, just living on an organic farming cooperative/commune in the mountains. There is no comfort in the toxic wasteland the earth is becoming.

  81. Deadbeat said on July 5th, 2010 at 5:11pm #

    teafoe2 writes …

    But when [Mr. Keyes] essays to propound about matters in the purview of Political Economy… well I wish he wouldn’t. I wish he’d stick to stuff he knows something about.

    I agree with teafoe2 and appreciate his ability to find the correct words.

  82. teafoe2 said on July 6th, 2010 at 3:13pm #

    Oops, stop & back up a ways: turns out on closer rereading that Jas Keye’s take is closer to my own than I’d realized. I don’t know why he doesn’t start his essay by stating the main points instead of with all the preamble, but maybe that’s necessary in order to reach the kind of people he knows? In my case it made it easy for me to miss what he said that I find important. For instance:

    • The dominate economic design, in function and in law, requires an increase in the use of materials and energy, and then distributes the wealth created by the increase to those who are said, in law, to ‘own’ the materials and energy.

    This is a roundabout way of putting it, but basically reflects reality. I’m not sure if “dominate” was a typo or some kind of funny approach to grammar so I leave it as is. ?? Marx said the same thing much more simply and directly.

    “…it is obvious that the most common experience, once a community is broken into those with wealth and those without wealth, is that those with wealth use it to control community law and power dominating the rest with force and fear – and today with propaganda as a thin layer over force.”

    Well, I don’t think I’d call it a “thin layer”, more like a manure-slide about the thickness of the polar ice-shield, but the basic idea is correct. This is the basic reality of class society, updated to include “propaganda” where previous versions of the ruling state utilized religion as their primary ideological apparatus.

    “…While all of these things are obvious if given a moment’s thought, it is also clear that the idea of private property has become the central madness of our economic system and that this madness drives growth economics so powerfully that no other idea is even allowed.”

    Which is exactly what Deadbeat and myself have been saying, and what Max S has been at such pains to deny. Proudhon who wasn’t even a Marxist put it in the classic nutshell: “Property Is Theft”.
    However it took Marx to explicate a bit later exactly how the enshrining of the Private Property concept as the cornerstone of the bourgeois state made “growth economics” imperative for each capitalist and for the class as a whole. Actually, once production for sale on a market becomes the predominant form of economic activity in a society, the rest follows. And continues until those who own no income-producing property unite & put a stop to the madness.

    Well I think Prof Keye said some other good things but I have chores to do. Just one observation: seems to me there is considerable divergence between Keye’s take and Mr Shields’ version? No?