Chris Hedges in “Killing Ragheads for Jesus: On Watching 'American Sniper'” writes:
The culture of war banishes the capacity for pity. It glorifies self-sacrifice and death. It sees pain, ritual humiliation and violence as part of an initiation into manhood. Brutal hazing, as Kyle noted in his book, was an integral part of becoming a Navy SEAL. New SEALs would be held down and choked by senior members of the platoon until they passed out.
On August 21, Chris Hedges wrote a great post called “Bradley Manning and the Gangster State.” It is consonant with my own thinking, and, more importantly, it makes one focus on the most important issue facing democracy today: “Is there a democracy in the United States anymore, or have we already evolved into a form of totalitarianism?” And if we have, then is there any return from this, a counter-evolution or revolution, that will restore our political liberties and our ability to change our political regime?
”The most spied upon, monitored and controlled population in human history”
Here's Chris's opening statement:
”The swift and brutal verdict read out by Army Col. Judge Denise Lind in sentencing Pfc. Bradley Manning to 35 years in prison means we have become a nation run by gangsters. It signals the inversion of our moral and legal order, the death of an independent media, and the open and flagrant misuse of the law to prevent any oversight or investigation of official abuses of power, including war crimes. The passivity of most of the nation’s citizens—the most spied upon, monitored and controlled population in human history—to the judicial lynching of Manning means they will be next. There are no institutional mechanisms left to halt the shredding of our most fundamental civil liberties, including habeas corpus and due process, or to prevent pre-emptive war, the assassination of U.S. citizens by the government and the complete obliteration of privacy.”
Some may object to the passionate and evaluative tone of this opening, and may want to quibble about whether Americans are “the most spied upon, monitored and controlled population in human history,” seeing this as glossing over the extreme conditions existing at the height of the Nazi, Stalin, and Mao regimes in Germany, the USSR, and China. But nevertheless it is hard to deny that in the areas of concern to the National Security Surveillance State, including not just foreign policy, “homeland security,” and the big media, but also in maintaining the dominance of the FIRE, Energy, military/industrial, and health insurance sectors of the economy, this statement is, sadly, true. Read more about Are We There Yet?
Chris Hedges calls out the “vast subterranean network of governmental and intelligence agencies from around the world dedicated to destroying Wikileaks and arresting its founder, Julian Assange.”
According to Hedges, on Hans Crescent Street in London is a red-brick building housing the Ecuadorean Embassy and in some of its rooms lives the “world’s best-known political refugee.”
Julian Assange was offered sanctuary there beginning last June. Read more about Being Julian Assange
Chris Hedges’ eloquent, heart-breaking account entitled “The Crucifixion of Tomas Young” is worth a full reading.
Hedges recently traveled to Kansas City to visit the disabled 33-year old Army veteran, Tomas Young, who had been the subject of a movie documentary entitled “Body of War” and whose paraplegic body since then has deteriorated to such a degree Young has decided to put an end to its horrifying regression.
Here's the link to "In Depth."
[I attempted to make this video "embeddable" by copying it from the C-span archives (through Google) to YouTube, then to my Twitter Account. Obviously, it did not work.] Read more about Election Day Video Treat [02:59]--C-Span "In Depth" Interview With Chris Hedges [Link Fixed]
I'm still processing Hedges' rant on TruthDig - I was so struck by his endorsement of violence in Greece and his condemnation of violence her in this country. I found an interesting essay at Viewpointmag.com via a comment on SMBIVA and this passage struck me as something that we should all chew on: Read more about Thinking About Oakland
(539 Obama-dumping days until 2012 election-Hugh's Obama's Scandals List)
Chris Hedges recently interviewed Cornel West in The Obama Deception: Why Cornel West Went Ballistic about his personal and political experiences with Obama. West is described by Hedges as “the Class of 1943 University Professor of African American Studies and Religion at Princeton University.”
Hedges launches his West-Obama narrative as follows: Read more about Obama’s Personal and Political Betrayal of ‘Brother’ Cornel West
Our consumer society and celebrity culture foster a frightening historical amnesia. We chatter mindlessly about something called the “American Dream.” And now that the oligarchic elite have regained control of all levers of power, and that dream is being exposed as a cruel hoax, we are being shoved back into the cage. There will be hell to pay to get back to where we were.
Saturday, March 19, 2011, the anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, will be an international day of action against the war machine.
March 19 is the 8th anniversary of the invasion and occupation of Iraq. Iraq today remains occupied by 50,000 U.S. soldiers and tens of thousands of foreign mercenaries.
This is just a quick hit, but I think Chris Hedges' article from 1/3/11 nails it (with a big assist from perpetually controversial Ralph Nader). (Please note: I am committed to non-violence. I don't know if Hedges is or not, but I do think we can take our country back peacefully.)
Here is a choice excerpt: Read more about Chris Hedges and Ralph Nader Nail It To the Wall
How to persuade the reader that the actual direction of contemporary politics is toward a political system the very opposite of what the political leadership, the mass media, and think tank oracles claim that it is, the world's foremost exemplar of democracy?
-- S.S. Wolin