Archive for the ‘AMERICAN POLITICS AND SOCIETY’ Tag

JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: MORE SECOND AMENDMENT NONSENSE – AMERICA’S PATRIOT RELIGION AND THE EMBRACE OF GUNS – ROLE OF FEAR -WHY WHAT IS NEEDED FOR CHANGE CANNOT POSSIBLY BE PROVIDED BY AMERICA’S GOVERNMENT – NOTE ON THE MEANING OF “RIGHTS”- AN AMERICAN MANTRA WITH AS LITTLE MEANING AS “PRIVACY” – A TOPIC RESEMBLING CHILDREN DESCRIBING SANTA CLAUS   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

COMMENT TO A RE-PUBLISHED ARTICLE BY THE LATE ROBERT PARRY IN CONSORTIUM NEWS

 

“More Second Amendment Madness”

https://consortiumnews.com/2019/08/10/more-second-amendment-madness/

 

“… false notion that the Framers of the U.S. Constitution incorporated the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights so an armed population could fight the government that the Framers had just created.”

 

The historical truth in a nutshell.

However, when you are dealing with fanatics and ideologues – literally, adherents of a secular religious cult such as American Patriotism – truth has about the same impact as pointing out the absurdity of Lot’s wife or Noah’s Ark or Jonah and the whale or the loaves and the fishes.

There is a fundamental divide in human beings when it comes to matters of belief, and especially intensely-held and fear-forged beliefs. Rational argument, evidence, and logic all get tossed, rejected vehemently because they conflict with what the adherent wants to believe, the adherent perhaps not even fully conscious about why it is he or she so desperately wants to believe.

It is just a fact that an awful lot of Americans want guns. They have paranoid fears, and guns make them feel more secure. They are conditioned by a national history and mythology literally built around the importance of guns, in everything from the frontier and cowboys and cavalry and Rough Riders to Prohibition and threats of communism and terror. And today’s vast American military and empire only provide a constant reinforcing sense of how important guns are in the affairs of state.

This issue is one of those which mark the limits of human rationality.

Considering that we are descendants of animals related to chimpanzees, it perhaps really should not surprise anyone.

Just think of how charming and appealing a chimpanzee can be with its big eyes and smile and stunts and remarkably human child-like intelligence.

And yet we now know from long and careful studies in the wild that part of the chimps’ basic behavior includes clans marching out for surprise attacks on neighboring chimp clans, fracturing skulls and driving the living from their homes and food supply. Sound familiar?

The problem around guns and violence in America is the country’s existing form of government. What the early government, so admirable in high school civics textbooks, began morphing into not many years after its creation.

You have an aristocratic, imperial form of government, itself hostile and belligerent to so many things in the world. It governs an empire built on violence, both inside the continental United States and outside in its possessions abroad.

It is truly incapable of dealing with many domestic matters. It is not really interested or concerned, except for a brief show of mollifying speeches to constituents and meetings after some terrible mass killing. Then it’s back to business as usual.

America’s government responds to money and power, and not to ideas or ideals or human appeals. It pretty much lets “the people” continue in whatever unpleasant social situations they find themselves – violence, injustice, lack of medical care, poor public schools, immense poverty – while it wheels and deals in the lives of still other people living abroad.

Just think about it. What could you actually expect at home from the kind of politicians who created Vietnam, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Somalia, and dozens of coups and blockades and interventions, killing and maiming millions? Hurling millions from their homes as desperate refugees? Refugees then often despised and ridiculed by the very same politicians? That, sadly, characterizes the very fabric of American government.

The kind of politicians who tolerate, and even praise as “restrained,” the behavior of Israel at Gaza where it literally ambushes unarmed crowds, week after week after week, demonstrating for rights? And the kind of politicians who continue arming Israel, heavily, even in violation of their own “showcase” laws concerning the use of exported American weapons?

No, you cannot expect much at home from a government displaying that kind of behavior abroad.

And, no, you cannot possibly have rational gun laws in the domestic chaos of jurisdictions that is American society. Where any one local jurisdiction even tries – as in some cities responding to their desperate residents – it is surrounded by a sea of gun-running and legal sales from neighboring jurisdictions. It can achieve nothing, except providing the true Patriot fanatics with yet another example of how gun control fails, something for them to smirk at.

Gun control must be national, but what are the chances of that in America?

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Response to another comment who used the term ‘snowflake’ to describe the concerns of Consortium News with guns:

 

Truly, for those aware of the realities of history, few expressions are more devoid of meaning than “rights.”

It remains a favorite American refrain, but it is about as meaningful as “privacy” is today with the NSA and intrusive corporate internet monopolies.

Such words resemble those of a child about Santa Claus.

Talk about “snowflake.”

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2019/04/12/john-chuckman-comment-a-few-observations-on-the-idea-of-rights/

 

https://chuckmanwords.wordpress.com/2016/04/22/john-chuckman-essay-the-illusion-of-rights/

 

Posted August 10, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: ON RE-OPENING THE KENNEDY ASSASSINATION INVESTIGATION – WHY IT WOULD BE A WASTE OF TIME – THE NATURE OF TRUTH WHERE EMPIRE OR GREAT POWER IS INVOLVED – SOME TRUTHS ABOUT THE FBI, WHO BY THE WAY DID ALL THE INVESTIGATING FOR THE SHABBY WARREN COMMISSION   7 comments

John Chuckman

EXPANSION OF COMMENTS POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN CONSORTIUM NEWS

 

“A Call to Reinvestigate American Assassinations”

 

While I am completely in sympathy with the idea that the major American political assassinations need re-investigation, I know, at the same time, that it is pretty much a waste of breath to advocate for it.

Why were the original investigations, endowed with large resources of money and personnel, so badly handled?

And, as a long-time student of the John Kennedy case, I can say flatly that the investigation of his assassination was more than badly handled.

It was deliberately and consistently mishandled. It was manipulated.

Who had such power to see that it was mishandled?

Well, those same interests have not gone away. There are new names a couple of generations later, of course, but the interests remain.

Indeed, I think it easy to argue that those interests have only become more powerful inside American society, a society where the disparity between the great bulk of citizens and the privileged has grown immensely since John Kennedy’s time. The country, in many ways, is not recognizable as the same place, the place in which I grew up. Hopes, aspirations, and opportunities have all been blunted or diminished for the bulk of Americans while the privileged establishment has burgeoned to become more powerful than ever.

All of the evidence we have about the American power establishment’s reinvigorated efforts to dominate the globe (following its quiet, grim recognition that America’s relative economic position in the world has seriously deteriorated since the halcyon decades after WWII) – its efforts to pursue “full-spectrum dominance,” its efforts in the bloody Neocon wars, its efforts against Russia and against China, its efforts in Latin America, and its horrific level of spending on the military and on security, including an entirely new kind of security involving the compromise of every single American’s intimate privacy – tells us that the interests which deliberately mishandled investigating Kennedy’s assassination, and did so in two major efforts, are very much still around.

America’s power establishment today lies pretty much around the clock about many subjects. It is simply a way of life for those pursuing great power and undertaking many dark deeds.

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2018/07/13/john-chuckman-comment-the-first-genuine-information-in-the-kennedy-assassination-records-release-to-give-us-some-genuine-information-about-what-happened/

_______________________

Response to a comment about Americans must not surrender but demand the truth:

Oh, yes, I certainly do see a lot of Americans fighting for this, or any other, truth.

Sorry, but your rhetoric achieves little beyond raising your blood pressure.

Americans, in general, today seem quite indifferent to truth of any kind. From embracing nonsense claims about “healthy stuff” and burying their minds in “social media” to accepting the almost continuous military atrocities abroad by America and its close allies.

Americans, for the most part, couldn’t care less about what America does in the Middle East and in other distant places. They certainly don’t want to hear about what really causes all those unpleasant, desperate refugees in the Middle East or in Central America – that is, the activities of their own armed forces. They certainly don’t want to hear about all the massive amounts of death and destruction, none of which would have happened without America’s efforts. And America’s press accommodates the wish completely, never honestly investigating such matters, always supporting the establishment’s “narrative.”

As the melodramatic, much-quoted movie-script line goes, “You can’t handle the truth!” Interestingly, that script line and the movie from which it comes were themselves dishonest defenses of Pentagon interests. So constant and penetrating so deeply into society are the establishment’s efforts to propagandize that popular entertainment is enlisted to the task.

Truth in America has become a rhetorical, argumentative word, devoid of any real meaning. It is even often used pejoratively.

In an empire where wars, coups, dirty operations, and assassinations are part of the week-to-week efforts of government – always lying as it does its dirty work – there is no such thing as truth. There is only “controlling the narrative,” getting our “story out there,” and countless big and little lies. The best of literature, art, music, and certainly science honors truth. Politics and the pursuit of power tend to avoid it completely.

Much of the rhetoric in the American “fake news” controversies is on the level of Baptist tent preachers blubbering about Satan rather than saying anything genuine about truth. Truth, despite all kinds of twisted arguments and insincere discussions, in most cases, actually isn’t that difficult a concept to understand or to adhere to. There really is something of the elegant simplicity of Keats’ lines about truth being beauty and beauty truth.

Something either happened or it didn’t, and honest investigators, whether journalists or criminal investigators or special commissions, either report it or they don’t. But it should be obvious that where whole areas of potential information are simply ignored – as in the Middle East today where never once is the Syrian or Iranian or Russian point of view reported or discussed. Always, the same sources are quoted on almost everything. It should be obvious there is no honest effort to report truth.

But most humans are just built that way. Whether in religious, political, or social matters, the original endowment of understanding and point of view provided by society from birth is not questioned and certainly not deeply investigated. The limited number who do question or investigate end up being regarded as eccentrics or kooks or geniuses not understood by most.

Going back to Kennedy’s death, a great many witnesses and valid pieces of evidence were simply ignored while, in a number of cases, lesser witnesses and highly dubious, even compromised, evidence was admitted into the record. Of course, that is only a fraction of what was done badly in the Warren report.

It is the same for every aspect of America’s imperial involvement in the world. Interests totally overshadow truth. Truth indeed becomes quite “inconvenient.”

The Kennedy and King assassinations revolved around this same central gravitational mass. Kennedy’s assassination was about American establishment concerns with Cuba, and to a lesser extent with Russia, and King’s was about an establishment frightened at the prospect of millions of young black men being mobilized against wars and for greater justice at home.

If you doubt that assertion about establishment concerns with King, just look, all these decades later, at the huge bellowing, angry noise in America over some black football players briefly, respectfully kneeling at a game during the national anthem in protest against police violence on the streets, where American police kill about three people every single day, people who are mostly unarmed, many of them being black, and the police involved almost never are charged with anything.

King was okay, could be tolerated at least, when he just gave “Sermons on the Mount,” so to speak, about justice and equality. But when he later began actively opposing a major war and made fiery speeches to striking black workers in various cities, well, that became a very different matter. With his fame and eloquence, he was starting to challenge the interests of those who really ran America.

The same establishment was furious about Castro, whose magnetism appealed even to some young Americans, and who very much challenged the traditional American Plantation System in Latin America, and great resources were spent by CIA trying to do everything from killing him or toppling his government and to sabotaging the economy and demonizing his words and acts. Unless you go into the literature of the time, it is hard today to appreciate the fierce intensity of that reaction. And those horrible Russians, imperial America’s damned Carthaginians, were actually helping him.

The only acceptable response was the square-jawed, fierce-eyed, ready-to-kill one displayed by innumerable American players of the time – Guy Bannister, J. Edgar Hoover, Lyndon Johnson, or Richard Nixon kind of stuff. John Kennedy completely lacked that quality, even though he delivered some pretty martinet-sounding speeches at times which I found rather unsettling.

His gross failures – as judged by the square-jawed set of powerful American figures – in the Bay of Pigs invasion and in the Cuban Missile Crisis, made him a marked man. His firing the CIA’s top three men, all establishment darlings, after Kennedy’s being humiliated by the CIA’s fiasco at the Bay of Pigs didn’t help. Nor did his angry promise to one day splinter the CIA into pieces, especially when combined with the fact that he made concessions to Russia over Cuba – my God, a promise never to invade again! Can you imagine that? – and established back-channel communications with Khrushchev during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

It was all even further fired up by insider knowledge of Kennedy’s intimate relationship with Mary Pinchot Meyer, an eastern establishment family dissident and non-conformist artist-type, and his reportedly having been introduced to some drugs by her in their trysts. She was, we learn from later accounts, the only woman with whom he had a relationship of equals and perhaps the only woman he ever came close to loving, and she was what later would be called very much a peacenik.

Truth and bloody empire cannot coexist. Lies are an inherent part of all the killing and oppression required by imperial enterprises, and since America’s enterprise is global in extent, its crimes and lies are many. We see this clearly in the contemporary case of Israel with its efforts to establish itself as a kind of miniature replica of imperial America in its region. Some of its many ruthless efforts do get recorded, but it is only some, and a compliant Western press minimizes what they report and uses all the euphemisms they can muster. The participants in empire always avoid, as much as possible, direct observation or reporting of their efforts. Always. That’s why secret security services are called secret and why classifying things is virtually an industry in Washington.

That’s why we can still look at old photos of Winston Churchill and think of him as that great cherubic-faced defender of democracy and all good things Western. He was in fact a dedicated imperialist, a man ready to do anything from machine-gunning revolting peasants to making ugly deals with criminals. The only reason he was not willing to do a deal with Hitler, who offered him one around guarantees for the British Empire, was his inability to accept having one country dominate the Continent, reflecting a very long-standing, basic principle of British foreign policy, and his own vanity – and he was immensely vain – in regarding himself as a greater figure than Herr Hitler, as he called him in his memoirs. He was not an enemy of tyrants in general. He was certainly not a defender of human rights in general. And he often laughed at aspects of democracy. In his World War II memoirs, you can clearly sense, too, some admiration of Stalin.

I don’t care which aspect of American government you talk about, it’s always the same. The FBI is a perfect example. The history of that organization is extremely dark and unpleasant. Yet today, we get all these assertions, during the controversy concerning Trump and the FBI, about this or that besmirching the FBI’s reputation. The FBI, in fact, has no reputation, beyond one manufactured by its public relations organization and the ever-supporting main-line press. The arguments about it all are phony.

Below is a piece about the FBI I wrote years ago, and nothing has really changed. It could readily be updated to double its length with a variety of tales.

Now, apart from other matters, they are in the business of trying to influence American elections, but even that is not new. It was learned just the other day in an interview with a former senior FBI official that a regular part of the FBI’s counterintelligence operations inside the United States involved working to prevent any seriously progressive or leftish politicians from being nominated for seats in Congress.

https://chuckmanwords.wordpress.com/2009/05/26/the-dreadful-record-of-the-fbi/ 

Here are a few other points:

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2018/02/09/john-chuckman-comment-i-am-amazed-at-how-some-americans-get-so-worked-up-only-now-about-an-fbi-that-has-always-been-political-and-corrupt-americas-stasi/

Here is a brief discussion around one of the only truly valuable documents ever released by government on the John Kennedy assassination.

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2018/07/13/john-chuckman-comment-the-first-genuine-information-in-the-kennedy-assassination-records-release-to-give-us-some-genuine-information-about-what-happened/

Yet there has been no public controversy or big discussion about the document, which contains, unmistakably, threads of the real truth. It has been all but been completely ignored by the press.

The authorities releasing this were so confident in the public’s unquestioning mindset that they weren’t concerned when they did so, and it appears they were right to think that way. Either that or they blundered, but it still had almost zero impact.

Which is to say, that none of this historical stuff, the stuff that would be pored over in yet another investigation, can make any difference unless the structure under which investigations must operate, the very structure of the way America is governed, is changed, and just what are the chances of that?

Here is a good summary of what I mean:

https://chuckmanwordsincomments.wordpress.com/2018/07/22/john-chuckman-comment-how-american-politics-really-work-why-there-are-terrible-candidates-and-constant-wars-and-peoples-problems-are-ignored-why-heroes-like-julian-assange-are-persecuted-and-r/

 

Posted January 23, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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