- “Reality has a way of intruding . . .”
- “They’re all denying climate change . . .”
- “They [other nations of the world] kind of count on the United States being on the side of science. And reason. And common sense.”
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Or go here.
Or go here.
According to the media, two Palestinians were shot dead this morning [24 March 2016] after stabbing a soldier in Hebron. The soldier sustained medium-level injuries. Video footage shows one of the attackers lying on the road injured, with none of the soldiers or medics present attending to him. A soldier is then seen shooting him dead from close range. Extrajudicial killings are the direct result of inflammatory remarks by politicians and a public atmosphere of dehumanization. The message is clear: attempting to injure an Israeli means a death sentence. The footage shown above was released by B’Tselem, a nonprofit Israeli organization promoting human rights in the occupied territories and in Israel at large.
We love evocative commercial writing and think the most exciting stuff to read on line is full of creativity, wittiness, and energy.
(Source: Craigslist/Atlanta, notice for a copywriter in Duluth, Georgia)
Mark Allan Takano (born December 10, 1960) is an American politician who has been the United States Representative for California’s 41st congressional district since 2013. A member of the Democratic Party, Takano also has served on the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees, in Riverside, Calif., since 1990. Upon taking office, Takano became the first openly gay non-white person in Congress.
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From 2014, the shooting of Christopher Ross Michaels-Martinez, or: “A rudderless bunch of idiots in government”
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“Craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA”
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In the 36 years since the election of Ronald Reagan the values of American culture have been reduced to a single factor: cash.
Everything in our lives is valued and judged only in terms of its quantifiability as money. Our morality is sordid. If a thing cannot be expressed numerically, if it cannot be converted to a number in a cell of the Great Spreadsheet Of Life, it does not exist. God does not exist in America today. Your conscience does not exist in America today. Your soul does not exist in America today.
At least, not to the people who own America.
The results speak eloquently all around us. Item: At one point in 1968, the #1 bestselling book in the United States was a novel by William Styron which received the Pulitzer Prize. Forty-six years later, the #1 fiction bestseller, “print and ebook,” was a Harlequin Romance.
Our National Rifle Association represents gun manufacturers, that is, people who make guns for money. That is all that our NRA represents. It does not represent good old boys in pickup trucks who carry guns, listen to Rush Limbaugh, and vote Republican. These are the people — fundamentally and almost uniformly decent working people — these are the people our NRA exploits.
The issue of the role of guns in America is not about “the security of a free State.” Guns are a “good” business. “Good” means “make a lot of money for the people who manufacture them.” Such is the morality of the owners of the gun “industry,” who are a subset of the 1 percent you’ve heard so much about. Their weapons are so lucrative, then, that for the good of the economy — the only good known in America anymore and the only justification for anything we do — we invest our children — and ourselves.
There is a name for a power that requires the sacrifice of children to its own glorification. That name is Moloch.
Moloch — the NRA and its masters, and their equivalents in the other near-airless upper reaches of the American economy — Moloch values money more than life. Moloch, today, is the foremost expression of America — and Moloch is a perfect spreadsheet creature: without God, without soul, without conscience — a perfect zero, an all-devouring vacuum.
These words accurately describe our NRA; that is to say, they describe the American ruling class.
Christopher Michaels-Martinez died for the good of the economy of the rich.
America is ruled and Americans led by a sparkling, sophisticated, well-dressed, depraved group of people who worship a fiction, originally devised to facilitate the exchange of property, as if it were a god — as if it were the god, the ultimate arbiter of the worth of everything our lives, and the lives of our young.
The NRA, and the wealthy men and women who control it, puts a quite literal price on the life of every child, woman, and man in the United States. And in their overweening pride, selfishness, and vanity they decide, again and again and again, that that price is eminently worth paying. It is paid to them.
But only so long as we pay it.
Perhaps the people behind our NRA — Colt’s Manufacturing, U.S. Repeating Firearms, other makers of guns and ammunition, along with flunkies like Georgia’s Nathan Deal and trained apes like Charles Krauthammer and William Kristol — will see the sense of regulating guns when they and their children begin to be shot to pieces while getting a burger and some fries, with a banana shake on the side. As George W. Bush said of Saddam Hussein, maybe these people simply need “to be taken out.”
Opponents of gun control, such as Georgia’s governor and his fellow Republicans, are monsters of cynicism, cowardice, hypocrisy, and selfishness. Their vile character stinks up our air. They are base. Their immorality is without limit, and they need, and more than deserve, to suffer for that immorality.
And sooner or later they will. History teaches that the longer such a class continues to make money from the murder of the members of the class below them, the more of that class eventually will suffer, and the worse their suffering will be. What kind of revolution do you suppose Wayne LaPierre would rather have? The American, the French, or the Russian? Because one of these — or worse — is on its way, and it’s travelling on a global itinerary.
Another way to look at that is to compare our present governing class with those of colonial America, 18th century France, and the empire of Russia of 1917. Do you see anybody on the evening news who reminds you of Ben Franklin? Louis XVI? How about the prize boob of the 20th century, Nicholas II? Can’t you really imagine hearing Eric Cantor saying, “Let them eat cake”?
The wholesalers of fear at the Department of Homeland Anxiety and the National Paranoid Agency — who make money peddling the same bogus “security” that was “protecting” New York City on Sept. 11, 2001 — these guardians of our “freedom” to die for free enterprise and entrepreneurship in a hail of automatic-weapons fire regard the foregoing language as a “terroristic threat.”
It is not. It is a rational, cold-blooded prediction and a sober warning. The NRA’s masters have got the guns, but We the People have got the numbers. A word to the wise is unnecessary.
Sure, Jacqueline Suzanne was on the bestseller list in those days, too. But some of the money made on that kind of trash fiction also supported the kind of fiction that merits literary prizes. Now, it only gets spent on more trash fiction, while our supposed “literature” consists of Mighty Fine Artists of finely-wrought words and carefully composed observations that wouldn’t offend Jack the Ripper, let alone the kind of ghouls of capitalism who make their (tons of) bread selling murder weapons to homicidal lunatics.
This is because the only measures of literary worth in America today are money and snobbery. We have a culture of Straw Men and Women, all graduates of the University of Oz, equipped with certificates of expertise (aka “advanced degrees”) in an ever-extending list of “disciplines” from “creative writing” to “international relations.” And what makes all this stuffed-shirted fakery? How did we get here? Money.
Police in Stockton, California, arrest a black teenager for “jaywalking.”
c. 1400, “to brand, cauterize; stigmatize,” originally of criminal marks or cauterized wounds, from brand (n.). As a means of marking property, 1580s; figuratively from c. 1600, often in a bad sense, with the criminal marking in mind. Related: Branded; branding.
Old English brand, brond “fire, flame; firebrand, piece of burning wood, torch,” and (poetic) “sword,” from Proto-Germanic *brandaz (cognates: Old Norse brandr, Old High German brant, Old Frisian brond “firebrand, blade of a sword,” German brand “fire”), from root *bran-/*bren- (see burn (v.)). Meaning “identifying mark made by a hot iron” (1550s) broadened by 1827 to “a particular make of goods.” Brand name is from 1922.