Tag: democracy

Skulduggery

Caitlin Johnstone reports on the skulduggery of the DNC, and the media blackout of the lawsuit in the wake of the sabotaged Sanders campaign.

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Les Enfant

Infants naturally depend on adults for instruction and protection, but infantile behavior in adults leaves them vulnerable to manipulation. Dependence on private equity media, vacuous Hollywood stars, or the corrupt non-profit industry for ideas means self-identified progressives will not be effective in fighting the fascist movement in the US. Habitually lazy, they will continue to protest and complain, but they will not make an organized effort to understand and attack the enemies of democracy, because that requires doing research, the results of which might challenge their habitual opinions.

Moment of Truth

As Center for World Indigenous Studies chair Rudolph C. Ryser states in his op-ed at IC Magazine,

I have been working with indigenous leaders for decades and arguing that indigenous nations must take the initiative to take back that which is and always has been theirs: land, resources and freedom to move… Asking for rights from those who have no interest in recognizing those rights is a defeated policy. Taking back your land and resources they stole, as Chief George Manuel urged, is the only alternative to self-destruction.

He goes on to say,

During the last four years, many UN member states have switched from liberal democracy to reactionary fascism as global economic collapse stirs deep fears among the working class and billionaires who willingly give autocrats and dictators license to rule… Fourth World nations have three alternatives: become chameleon nation’s to hide from attacks; join the scapegoating; or form coalitions with other nations and with states to establish defenses and take control of lands and their wealth.

Sounding a note of dire warning, Dr. Ryser observes,

Virtually all of the work by indigenous leaders in the United States to build constructive relationships with states and central governments and the United Nations are now utterly at risk of collapse and reversal. Trumplicans will likely become the ultimate “Anti-Indian Movement” in the United States since leaders of that movement now hold seats in Congress, the Senate, the Supreme Court and the Executive Branch as well as thirty of the fifty states.

Group Wisdom

Democracy is a discursive process, where citizens discuss public issues and social challenges. Whether they gather in their local church, school, or online, it is the discussion of ideas and events that enables them to arrive at group wisdom–something we see in the jury system.

Through letters to the editor, and comments on news stories and editorials, this exchange of ideas and perspectives facilitates the examination of beliefs and values, leading to clearer understanding. Sometimes, by reexamining what we think we know to be true, we discover that we were mistaken.

In today’s media of recycled press releases posing as news, there is a lot of propaganda, but little journalism. This creates a lot of heat, but little light.

Habitual opinions in this social environment–created by public relations (PR) marketing firms–are thus commodities, acquired in the same manner as other consumer goods. These competing commodified narratives are consequently similar to rival cheer-leading squads, espousing slogans for their team.

In The Creation of Discursive Monoculture, I discussed how the power elite (Wall Street) controls public consciousness through their ownership of the PR firms serving government, media, and the non-profit industrial complex. As a result, all narratives, including those on social media, serve Wall Street.

To break free from the narratives of privatized mass communication, that now dominates public opinion, we have to break free from financial and psychological dependence on handouts from Wall Street–whether in the form of foundation grants from the power elite, or in the form of paid advertising and PR.

Otherwise, Wall Street will continue to set the civil society agenda, and consolidate social engineering through social media, leading to an environment where nothing of importance is ever discussed in public. What I have described as ‘a world of make believe’.

Boldly Pursuing the Truth

Fighting back to defend democracy against the right-wing is a laudable goal that few live up to in American society. Those that do usually find themselves marginalized, often by those who pay lip service to democratic values. Paid ‘activists’ mostly engage in show business.

The evisceration of journalism by private equity media ownership is partly to blame, as liberals and conservatives alike are severely misinformed. A dearth of institutionalized mentoring, due to an absence of available resources, as well.

Hostile takeovers of the non-profit industrial complex, i.e. Amnesty International, is yet another reason. Blatant fraud among social media NGOs, created by billionaire philanthropists and the military industrial complex, i.e. Avaaz, doesn’t help.

Self-censorship and self-promotion by non-profits dependent on the financial elite, i.e. Soros, Gates, Ford and Rockefeller, creates a situation where benign neglect toward those who make the sacrifice is commonplace. A lack of generosity and reciprocity between those funded by foundations and authentic grassroots leaders is the norm rather than the exception.

Honor and respect in our country is almost non-existent. Volunteer defenders of democracy are all alone.

Consumerism teaches us to cede our duties of citizenship and unthinkingly follow celebrities, i.e. Naomi Klein, who are in bed with the financial elite. Self-organized democratic renewal in this scenario is not only unattainable, it has become unimaginable.

Mustering the courage to boldly pursue the truth and not back down is extremely rare. The 2015 Paul deArmond Citizen Journalist of the year, Sandra Robson, exemplifies these attributes, as did Paul.