Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Edward Bernays, Freud's favorite nephew saw it clearly, already in the '20s, 30 years before Huxley. At that time, neither Bernays nor anyone else thought it was exceptional that the "best" minds would do all the thinking, and didn't regard it with anything other than calm pleasure:
"“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. ...We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. ...In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons...who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”
It is interesting to consider these two leading thinkers' (Bernays and Huxley) explanations of essentially the same phenomenon: The "manufacture of the consent of the governed."
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
How yer ol' perfesser Seezit: Sen Yertle's behavior as an active agent for the Corporatz' and Oiligarchs' agendae is approved--likely heartily endorsed--by his constituents, because it is so successfully camouflaged by/as racism, both his own and the culture's. He can and does frame his lickspittle fealty to the Corporatz' anti-worker. anti-democratic, anti-humane agendae in the guise of an attack on that "Damn NEGRO in the Whitehouse."
Framed like that, there's is NOTHING those "Saltine-Murkins" won't excuse.
This is consonant with my theory that those same constituents are willing, indeed delighted, to bear a small inconvenience or deprivation if by doing so they can assure the denial of ANY benefit to those whom they view and detest as inferiors.
Re: Prez Lowbar and his "promise?"
Woody'z sad to hafta tell ya, at this late date: "Obama" was NEVER a "promise."
He was ALWAYS a brand.
His campaign won an award that year for the 'best new brand."
He was NEVER what the rhetoric pretended he'd be.
The GOPhux threw the election to put this cypher in office, but he was NEVER gonna be anything but a political palate-cleanser, an interval between successive bouts of "sanitary" GOPhux fascismo.
How could anyone with the intellectual acuity of a sponge NOT have known that the Owners of the country would NOT turn the management of their operations over to ANYONE who posed the tiniest SCINTILLA of a chance of CHANGING anything?
What the fuck WERE they thinking?
Thursday, October 9, 2014
Yer ol' perfesser thinks Pres. Lowbar didn't understand the "all-out, no-holds-barred, bare-knuckles, tooth-and-nail, no-quarter, gouging-and-biting, hair-pulling, I'm-gonna-fuck-you-up" nature of the opposition arrayed against him, their ferocity and ruthlessness. And their glee!
Prez Lowbar unaccountably din't ever actually seem to foresee and imagine that the GOPhux would so totally abrogate the underlying ethical/political principals which had mad 'democracy' work for the previous 200+ years. He was, somehow, naively, unprepared for it. For some reason, I think HE thought they'd play fair. Wrong-o!
Lowbar's misadventujres basically just illustrate how fragile had the system been. It had ALWAYS been "possible" for some faction to tyrannize the rest of the system; it had just never been "thinkable." There had been intimations during the Newtster's furious attacks on "Clenis" Bill Clinton. That impeachment fiasco was nothing but a power play.
But with America's First Black President in the White house, suddenly, not only was it THINKABLE, but it was DOABLE. In his presidency, because of the simmering, barely repressed rage of disentitled White voters, and their barely suppressed fear and loathing of the growing, non-White demographic, the Righturds had an unprecedented opportunity to pursue their long-term (remember John Birch?), historical, anti-democratic, anti-popular, anti-social agenda under the cover of (acceptably) attacking the "illegitimate," dark-skinned "pretender." It was "the perfect storm."
Interestingly, it was never--as the mobsters inna Godfather mutter as they strangle the life out of a rival--"poysonal; jis binness, youse knows?"
Monday, September 29, 2014
The fundamental issue is structural.
Ya know why and how THE FUCK the GOP can get away with 252 filibusters in only SIX years? How they can subvert the entire system on a whim? Bring the wheels of gummint grinding almost to a halt, at least where the most vulnerable are concerned? Halt Climate Change mitigation efforst in their fuuking tracks?
Yer ol' perfesser sez it's NOT merely because of Prez Shamwow F. Lowbar, though that is (no small) part of it--they did it with Clenis Clinton, too.
You prob'ly got it by now: It's a "class" thang...
It's cuz the GOPhux are the SENIOR (legislative) partners in the "old firm," regardless of their numbers.
The Dims are, by default AND by definition, the 'Junior" members. Probationary. Perennially.
They're not (and never gonna be) "vested." They're always gonna be "juniors." They don't and won't have the 'status' to act like such total dicks.
You can ONLY do that when yer the nominal representatives of the "Owners." Representing "nigras an' messkins," other minorities, poor folks, the ill and injured, the homeless, the despised like the Dims A9are supposed to) do, doesn't get you ANY of the RIGHT kind of "F*CK-YOU" juice.
You cannot act like the Party of Petulant Pricks if you're (allegedly) representing the poor.
Only when your prime constituency is the Oligarchs can you get away with that kind of crap.
If the "second-rate" Dims tried it, they'd be pilloried on EVERY CorpoRat media in the country.
Only consider the ways public treatment of Louis Gohmert and Allan Grayson varies. Gohmert, who babbles like a prairie snake-handler, never hears a word of censure from the mass of the SCUM/MSM/CorpoRat "press." Grayson, on the other hand, is handled as if he were from outer space.
Monday, September 1, 2014
From A. Lincoln's 1861 "Address to Congress" (a precursor to the SOTA):
"It is not needed, nor fitting here [in discussing the Civil War] that a general argument should be made in favor of popular institutions; but there is one point, with its connections, not so hackneyed as most others, to which I ask a brief attention. It is the effect to place capital on an equal footing with, if not above, labor, in the structure of government.Marx recognized in Lincoln a "fellow traveler" and wrote him a congratulatory letter from London when AL won re-election in 1864. It had not arrived yet, by April 15, 1865, when Lincoln died.
"It is assumed that labor is available only in connection with capital; that nobody labors unless somebody else, owning capital, somehow by the use of it induces him to labor. This assumed, it is next considered whether it is best that capital shall hire laborers, and thus induce them to work by their own consent, or buy them, and drive them to it without their consent.
"Having proceeded thus far, it is naturally concluded that all laborers are either hired laborers or what we call slaves. And further, it is assumed that whoever is once a hired laborer is fixed in that condition for life.
"Now, there is no such relation between capital and labor as assumed, nor is there any such thing as a free man being fixed for life in the condition of a hired laborer. Both these assumptions are false, and all inferences from them are groundless.
"Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. Capital has its rights, which are as worthy of protection as any other rights."
Thursday, August 14, 2014
In recent broadcasts, the utter, doddering dolts of #IgnorantFukStix (aka Faux Nooz) have been eager to deflect attention away from the stench of racism which pervades the events in Ferguson, MO.
They have therefore resurrected the "race hustler" canard and tried to smear Rev. Al Sharpton.
In yer ol' Perfesser's humble opinion, unlike Sean Hannity, Falaffel Bill-o, Roger Ailes, The Rupe and the rest at #IgnorantFukStix, Sharpton actually is a member of an oppressed minority and speaks with some authority on such matters.
He has actual, lived experience with the easy, confident racism of supremacist whites.
He has EARNED to right to comment and be critical about the vicious, ever-present racism of Whites in Murka.
He gets shit from mainly cracker/redneck/asswhole whites who are made (even unconsciously) uncomfortable by their complicity in the perpetuation of white supremacism.
He is NOT a "race hustler"; he's the despised conscience of the witless, blind, but nevertheless culpable White Majority.
Tuesday, August 5, 2014
While stopping short of accusing the illustrious Dr/Prof Tyson of conscious intellectual dishonesty, still--no matter how smart he is--Tyson's in exactly the same position as Reich and Krugman vis a vis economics: they cannot be heard to say that the official orthodoxy is in any way "false," or insufficient or incomplete.
Tyson's got "permission' to be a gadfly, but not to attack the firmament of commercial mythology. He's (possibly unconsciously) bought the party line.
The primary danger of genetically engineered crops is not to the digestive systems of thye consumers, it is to the reduction of the range of plant genetic diversity.
As Upton Sinclair observed 100 years or so ago: It is hard to get a man to see that which his paycheck depends on his being ignorant of.
The salary at that Planetarium is NOT insubstantial...
(P.s.: Bennett's hand is unmistakable, innit?)