The sigh of the oppressed creature

Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought. (JFK, Yale graduation, 1962)

If newscaster ‘facts’ land in your lap and you uncritically accept them as true; if you find yourself siding with one or another pundit in a televised debate; if you repeat talking points; if you’ve never looked at the hard evidence of the major events of our times, accepting official explanations as true; if you have ever ridiculed someone who does not accept official truth….

You’re an American. A thought-controlled, behavior controlled, no-threat-to-anyone-in-power American.

American public opinion is under complete control of the state. You, as a Democrat, might vociferously disagree with Republicans. That’s allowed, even encouraged, and the state will even furnish the issues you are allowed to vociferously disagree about. (Abortion, gun control, etc.) Once elected, they are the same people. But if you stray beyond the bounds of party politics, you’ll be ostracized, marginalized.

Think of what they do now at political conventions: They erect fenced areas, force demonstrators inside them, and then ignore them. They are called “free speech zones.” I am not kidding about that. This is what they are called.

That’s a nice metaphor for party politics. But there are real jails too. Eugene Debs campaigned from a prison cell in 1920, and Ralph Nader was arrested when he appeared at the two-party “debate” in 2000. We are only allowed freedom within the fences. Stray outside, the gloves come off.

Once every two or four years you get to throw the bums out. It does not change anything, but validates you. That is why we have elections. Otherwise, we might have real change, real progress, which is not allowed.

If the man or woman you support enjoys wide media coverage and is welcomed at newspapers editorial board meetings for serious scrutiny by serious journalists, and gets to ride on floats and is touted as a “front-runner” … move on. You’re supporting an apparatchik. Your candidate has already been vetted and found acceptable to insiders.

American party politics is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.

10 thoughts on “The sigh of the oppressed creature

  1. With 27% turnout in Montana’s 2014 primary I’d say interest in fake elections is waning. At what point should an election be declared void for failing to attract enough voters? Compared to most previous elections here and around the globe this is not a good sign.

    On another first amendment related note, not much news lately about Russian-Exxon deal for Arctic and Siberia oil and gas. Sanctions are the latest hot “news,” so, perhaps something important is happening in that shadow.


  2. Swede, who’s story are you going to believe about the downed Malaysian Boeing 777 passenger jet over Ukraine? Will you wait for an investigation, or “shoot from the hip?” The spin is already quite impressive, like somebody had talking points ready to go at just the right moment.


    1. Frankly Steve, all I’ve seen is a bunch of people falling all over themselves waiting for the talking points while facts that America doesn’t control come out. Joe Biden delayed his speech at Netroots Nation more than a half hour so he could present at least the latest official WH line. At current rate, it’s gonna take a full 48 hours of the news cycle before everyone has their marching orders. That really doesn’t suggest that anyone had their talking points ready to go.


    2. American news reporting will be worthless. On NPR All Things Considered tonight, some reporter speculated that NATO is watching Russian troop movements, and so might have an idea of the source of the missile. It never occured to her that NATO is a suspect. These people are paid not to think critically. That’s why they get hired.


      1. Mark, the western news media hasn’t seemed to have a clue what’s happened. NATO probably is watching Russian troop movements, because they (NATO) haven’t the first clue what’s going on. It isn’t bad reporting. It’s incomplete reporting. You can suggest that NATO is suspect all you like. But the incompetence of the response does not favor a conspiracy. It favors opportunism.


        1. Russian troop movements are a moot point, as the whole of the Russian threat against Ukraine is made up nonsense, made up in DC or Langley and repeated by American newscasters. Whether or not something is a conspiracy is a moot point, as in fact American journalists are selected based on their cluelessness. It must be so. The empire cannot endure real journalism.


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